Jisei Suzuto joins the Ishiins as they are caught up in the final war with the Insurgents.
-Kaizen Academy Grounds-
-Graduation Day, Early February-
-Mid Morning; 11 am-
"Take these three to the nearest hospital around here right now! They're about to die any second now!! Call me right me afterwards on their condition later!" I shouted as our backup agents inclined with my order and rushed, as they had them inside their black SUV on the parking spaces on the right of the whole school. I stared unto the academy's grounds.
They were filled with multiple emergency first aid huts with backup medics helping the affected victims that needed them, multiple parents and guardians gathering and accompanying their children as the agents assisted them along with the police officers. Multiple other backup agents went inside to check for more infected students to obliterate their foreign aura, the snow falling harder all around us as I grabbed a snowflake slowly falling down. I grabbed my neck with my hand as my mind thought...
Kaizen Academy... one of the many schools affected by an Insurgent attack... and not just any Insurgent... It was someone we knew, Kokko Yano. A former comrade and teacher, an Ishiin like us... it's rumored that she didn't resign of her own volition, but was forced to. Now all she is... is a shell of her former self... A sadistic manipulator, supposedly brainwashed by the old Insurgent remnants of more than 200 years ago... by "Those" bastards...
I sigh as I see multiple students taken by multiple ambulances, police and private vehicles of our own... the collateral damage we took here, will be nothing if we don't start being more prepared... for whatever they have planned...
I felt something tug at my shoulder as I see the shorter blue haired student of mine.
"What's the matter, Rushiko?" I asked him as we looked at the Academy's surroundings. Filled with all of the people such as the affected victims, their parents or guardians, the medics, our own men along with the police... and the worst problem right now.
I sighed louder as I got closer to a police officer and asked him.
"Why are there still this many reporters around here!? They're halting our progress and causing more problems than we need right now!" I said as he scratched the back of his head, his face frowning.
"We know! We're trying to escort them out without threatening to arrest them... but I think we don't have a choice but to..." he says this as he reports to the other officers around the area.
"We'll have them out of the crime scenes! and also! we'll deal with the victims here and in the other affected schools! we'll be done by later at probably 2-3 pm sir!" he said this as I bobbed my head, Rushiko following me as we walked over to my car. A normal black SUV pretty much perfect for any situation (the uniform vehicle for us).
"Senpai... what'll happen to Jisei and the other two?" He asked as the both of us got in my car. I started the engine as the snow completely covered the view of the windshield, I activated the wipers as I replied.
"They're going to be fine! it might take them a week or two to get better, before we can let them train. I do hope they would want to be Ishiins... I mean they've already awakened their abilities. And it takes years or even decades for actual Ishiins to get theirs (you know how hard it is to awaken one...) they have massive potential to be better than even me! (probably hehe) I just hope that they'll accept us..." I stated as we left the academy, the SUV leaving multiple marks on the snow covered road.
"But before we get too excited to meet our new friends... we need to deal with this incident first and inform their parents... that'll be the hard part of it all... which is convincing them" I gulped as Rushiko looked at me, his look never changing... he stayed silent for most of the trip. I looked at him, his face facing the right window near him. I brushed his hair as he grabbed my hand, his face slightly frowning.
"Jeez... you don't need to do that..." he softly said as I chuckled, he lightly punches my shoulder.
"Yeah... I know what happened must've been a lot for you... seeing Ko-chan like that... We'll have to meet her sooner or later... Rushiko, remember that she isn't the same person as you've known. Don't be comfortable knowing you can change her back... she's long gone now..." I said as Rushiko groaned, I patted and held his back.
"There's a "reason" as to why she did all of this... we'll find out eventually..." I said as we got closer to a neighborhood of houses, multiple shops and residences were in our view as I stopped and stepped on the brakes.
We were finally at the "Suzuto" residence...
"Alright Rushi-kun... let's do this" I said as he nodded, his face determined. I grabbed his head as we got out of my car. The Suzuto residence right in front of us, its surroundings the same as any of the houses here. A normal looking house with a front yard and a first floor, multiple windows sticking out of the front side. The only difference being the sign with their family name on the front of the yard, its kanji representing their name.
We both walked towards the main door, across the ice-capped grounds of their main yard. I coughed and cleared my throat as we both faced the front door. We looked at each other... as we beckoned and agreed, I stretched out my arm and ringed the doorbell with my hand. We waited a delay that felt like an entire century until we saw it open, its creaking noise ringing as we saw a grey haired short girl expose the insides of their home as she responded.
"Umm... who are you two? sirs?" she said as we heard a deep familiar voice (familiar to me) ask the short girl.
"Natsuno? Who's at the door?" the deep female voice asked as she replied.
"There... are two of them, one of them's wearing a military jacket mom... what's happening?!" she loudly said as she stared at me, I chuckled as I pulled out my ID and so did Rushiko.
"We're both Ishiin Agents! don't worry! you didn't do anything wrong, we just have news for you and your mom! it's uhh... not pleasant though" I coughed as Rushiko strongly bumped my arm, I scratched my head as we saw a middle-aged woman rush out to the front door. Her face worried as she held my hand.
"Suzushii-san... did something happen?" she asked as my throat dried up, I gulped down. Rushiko had his hands inside his pockets as I said.
"Jisei was involved with the Insurgents attacks on the Academy... and he's severely wounded..." I said bluntly as she dropped my hand. Her eyes on the ground as she paused. She grabbed the short girl's hand, her face tense and her voice slightly faint.
"Please go inside, I'll make some tea" she said as she dragged Natsuno and told her to go inside her room, we complied as we went inside the main hallway leading to the main hall. On our left was the living room and on our right was the kitchen as she went and had the kettle boiling. The short girl looked at us with her eyes squinting a little as she went upwards the stairway in front of us, the mother loudly said.
"Please sit down inside the living room... I'll have the tea ready!" she exclaimed as we sat down at the nearest coach on the middle of the living room, it was facing near and in front of the kitchen as Rushiko tapped on my shoulder.
"Senpai? Are you sure we should bring that up, that we want Jisei as an Ishiin... especially since we don't even know where Atsushi-san is..." he silently said as replied.
"We should tell her... don't worry! we'll find Atsushi, it's one of our main priorities to... he's too valuable to lose... and he's one of my oldest friends... I won't let him die! and for that plan of mine to work... we need Jisei for it!" I said as she got near us and placed the tray on the coffee table in the middle of the multiple coaches and arm chairs surrounding it, the tea's heat steaming outwards as she placed two sugar cubes on all of the three tea cups. She mixed it as she gave us the tea cups on small plates along with small cookies with diamond shapes.
"So... Suzushii-san, can you please tell me what happened to my son?" she asked me as both of my hands started to sweat, my forehead covered with it and my voice hesitating to speak.
"Inari-san, I'll say it clearly..." I said as I prepared myself for the mental anguish I will give her... this is not gonna look good...
"Jisei was a part of the recent Insurgent attacks on a number of schools around Tokyo, he's in critical condition as he volunteered to fight a student who went berserk and was controlled by the perpetrator. He fought with another student named Manaka Yukinari, his best friend or... lover of sorts? Well because of the result of their battle... both of them have suffered worse injuries than the girl who went berserk... he had the injury on his stomach..." I said as Inari's eyes broadened as she stood up and grabbed me by my collar, her eyes glaring at me...
"Please tell me! he's going to be alright!! I don't even know what happened or where my husband is! Please don't tell me I'm about to lose Jisei too!!" she shouted as she tightened her grasp on my collar, her eyes filled with watering tear drops and she sobbed while she let go as she knelt on the floor.
"Please Inari-san! I know it's hard but please bear with me! Jisei-kun's going to be alright, along with the other two girls. We had them be admitted right away to the nearest hospital and now they're currently under surgery for their wounds... we'll be able to see them later this evening..." I said reassuring her, she looked up at me with her eyes sore and her voice shaking.
"I don't want to lose my family... they're all I have left..." she replied still sobbing, Rushiko's face tensing up as he squatted down and rubbed her back.
"Please don't let them die!!!" she screamed at me, my hand tightening as I crouched and grabbed her face. She looked at me as my lip twitched while she closed her eyes, I confidently said.
"I won't let Jisei-kun die! I have a promise to keep and I'm not gonna break it... Inari-san, I have a plan to find Atsushi-kun... but the plan needs Jisei for it to work! He needs to use his abilities and grow as an Ishiin agent to fight them off! Please... I know you've been through so much, so I'll protect them no matter what! Please let Jisei become an Ishiin!" I said as she looked at me, her eyes expanding as she wiped the tears off her eyes. She stood up and embraced me, her warmth wrapping around me as she said.
"Take care of Jisei then... and promise me you'll find Atsu-kun! Our family needs him... I need him... promise me you'll protect our family... you're the only one who can..." she softly said as I embraced her back as I tightened my arms around her, I nodded as I brushed my hand over her hair.
"I promise! I'll find Atsu-san! And I'll protect both of them! He's one of my best mates after all..." I said as she let go, Rushiko looked at me as his lips started to coil into a light smile. Inari sat down as Natsuno peeked near the living room, Inari noticed her and soughed as she waved her hand. Natsuno got closer and sat down near our coach (who was at our left, the coach was also facing the coffee table) She berated Natsuno for not listening to her as Rushiko sat down and whispered to me.
"Yeah... I still had a hard time though... she was sobbing and screaming at me... I really pity her... I can't let their family breakdown like this! we'll need Atsushi... we'll need Jisei and all of the new recruits we can muster... to beat the Insurgents in the final war... to finally end all of this!" I stated as I grabbed the teacup and the plate under it and took a sip, it's delicious minty taste refreshing my thirst and my mind.
"Inari-san... you can talk to us, if you ever need our help just give us a call or a message! We'll be there for you!" I said as I sipped more of my tea, Inari patted Natsuno's head as her hair got messy.
"Thanks... I will, I hope this will all end soon... so we can have our families back, so we can stop all of this madness..." she said as she hugged Natsuno, Rushiko sipped his tea and grabbed pieces of the cookies. And ate them, his face changed as he reacted with the largest smile I've seen, his mouth shaking from its sweetness as he gobbled all of them up. I chuckled as both Inari and Natsuno giggled.
"I'm glad you like them! We've been working on that recipe for days now! It's pretty satisfying seeing that kind of response!" she said as she sipped her tea, I arched my back on the end of the coach as I crossed my arms.
"The Insurgents have started their attack... that's why all of us have been scrambling on missions, trying to gather intel and also secure the locations affected by their assaults. Atsushi-san was sent on a mission to deal with one of their high ranking leaders, we haven't heard from him in 4 weeks now... or that's what they keep telling us, they keep saying most of the details are classified... that's where my suspicion comes in..." I said as I opened my crossed arms and held a finger upwards, as they watched me.
"They did it on purpose... they wanted to use Atsushi as bait for the stronger leaders who had grudges on him, so they can focus on all the weaker fodder... so that they don't use up of all our grade A and S Ishiins on them... yet... I do have an idea of where he is, but I'll have to go alone. I can't have inexperienced Ishiins go up against possibly grade A or S Insurgents..."
"Suzushii-san... why are you telling us this?" she asked as they waited for my response.
"Because the type of situation he's up against... is impossible for both him and me, we only have a slight chance to fight that many enemies with that type of caliber. And even then... I'll still need help. I'm telling you this because you need to know what your husband is facing, and let me say... he's not gonna last for any longer, that's why by tomorrow. I'll leave and find his whereabouts!" I stated as Inari started to fidget as she tightly embraced Natsuno, who wasn't understanding any of what we were talking about. She stayed quiet as Rushiko replied.
"Suzushii-san... I can't train them all for too long... I'm not that powerful yet, I won't be able to teach them that many techniques or principles. We need you Sensei!" he said as I got up and stood in front of him.
"Remember, these are the same Insurgents that caused not only the beginning of this war, but multiple ones like the Osaka Conflict and the most infamous event... the Fukushima Incident, where they completely decimated not only all of the populace there but left a huge crater with nothing but dust and bones... you know what "we" had to face don't you? Rushiko, I'm about to face these overwhelming forces... So please don't rely on me for too long, I want to you to grow on your own..." I said as he grabbed my hand and tightened his around mine, he painfully exerts his frustration on my hand.
"But if you know anything about me... I'll obliterate them, no matter what..." I coldly said as his face tensed up, his skin getting chills all over. As I got closer to him.
"I won't leave you Rushiko, just promise me. That you'll train your new comrades for me, that you'll show them what I've taught you..." I soothed his worries as he slightly jerked his head, he got up as we faced Inari.
"Inari-san, unfortunately; we'll have to leave now. We've got to inform both Manaka and Koyo's parents now too, but you should go to Kenko Private Hospital later evening by 6:00 pm. Just mention Jisei, and they'll let you see him" she and Natsuno both got up as Inari replied.
"Thank you Suzushii-san... for sacrificing so much for us all... please don't die!" she said sadly, I grabbed her hand and shook it.
"Don't worry about me! I'll get Atsushi-san back! just... please watch over Rushiko and the others for me!" I spouted as I smiled at her. We bowed and thanked them for their hospitality, as both of them did the same. We walked down the main hallway to the front door as we left, their voices bidding us goodbye as I carried my promise and their trust on my back.
After informing Inari-san. We went downwards the slope of where Jisei's house was, just 5 mins away by car. We arrived at Manaka's residence, it was a bigger house. It was wider and had more of an emphasis on wider space than having that space on another floor. As we rang the doorbell, we heard the rustles of movement. Gasping and weird sounds... and then!
It opened, we saw a tall middle-aged man with glasses as he read the papers he was holding. The living room behind him was a mess, as another person sighed and picked up the mess of papers covering most of the floor, a dog was alongside him.
"Jeez! can't you at least clean up your paperwork after dealing with them!?" the voice of a young girl loudly said as he chuckled.
"Yeah... sorry about that, got kinda carried away with work... hehe" he squatted down and petted their dog as it wagged its tail in joy, he got up and stared at us for a little while. He shifts his body backward, taken aback by what he saw.
"Umm... Suzushii? what are you agents doing here?" he asks us as we flashed our ID's. He slowly nods and invites us inside, we followed him towards the couches facing the main hallway of where we were at. We sat on the same couch, the young girl scratching her head proceeds to sit in another coach near ours. She whimpered in seeing us, he opened the mini-fridge near the tv and got a cold bottle of water. He grabbed the glasses atop the fridge and placed them on the coffee table in front of us as he poured them.
"Is this related to any of my work for the ICA?" he asked me as he drank his glass.
"It isn't Fuyu-san... how do I say this... it's related to "the incident" at Kaizen Academy..." I instantly drank all of the water, my thirst quenched from its coldness. He took off his glasses and dropped them, his eyes staring at the floor. The young girl's whimpering getting louder.
"Don't tell me..." he faintly said, I wiped the sweat off my forehead. The young girl started to fidget as I hesitated to tell them. But still, they have to know regardless! even though... it's their own family member who's affected...
"Yes... Manaka was one of the victims of the incident, she helped in taking out the aura that was affecting the students... but... she fought the student who went berserk alongside Jisei. But in fighting Koyo, the girl who was controlled by the suspect. Both Manaka and Jisei suffered severe wounds from fighting her, she had them all over her body..." I said this as he laid his arms on his legs and crossed his fingers, he closed his eyes and sighed.
"Kakomi... is my daughter going to be alright?" he said worryingly as both he and the young girl looked at me, waiting for my response. Rushiko looked as well, as he drank his cold water. The ice shaking around his glass, I crossed both of my arms as I replied.
"She's going to be fine! all three of them are currently at Kenko Private Hospital under surgery as we speak! she'll recover in less than 2 weeks' time... it's just..." I stopped talking as I was reluctant in what I wanted to say... I looked at Rushiko, as he paused a bit. Then he proceeded to nod as to say "Just ask him already!"... well here goes nothing...
"I haven't seen it myself... but Manaka had aura residues all over her body and prominently her hands... clearly "almost" all three of them have their awakened Ishiin abilities, and Manaka was willing to risk her life for Jisei on their battle... I just want to make sure... as her father. Will you agree to let her become an Ishiin?" I said this looking straight at his eyes, his face got closer towards his crossed fingers as he held his face with his fingers. The young girl suddenly intervened.
"But! Dad I don't-" she got up and shouted, but the father raised his hand. The girl saw this and instantly sat down and stayed silent, He replied.
"I know the factors and conditions of being an Ishiin agent... and of the dangers, it imposes... but I, no "we" can't force her to be what she wants to become... only Manaka can decide what she wants... all we can do is support her..." he then grabbed the bottle and got another glass for the girl, then he filled all of ours. Grabbing his glass, he raises it near his face as he said.
"The thing is... Manaka isn't exactly inexperienced in fighting... she probably has more than both Jisei and the other girl's combined... well I don't want to delve into all of the details. Let's just say, she wanted to feel; what she couldn't. She's made decisions, that she isn't proud of. But after what Jisei's done for her, for what he's taught her. For what I couldn't do... I just want her to choose her own path..." he said this as he gulped it all down, slamming the glass at the coffee table. The young girl was looking away as he continued on.
"Me and her... we're not exactly on intimate terms, she resents me... and... I can't blame her for it. I just want you to know if she does want to become an Ishiin. Please take care of her, because I wasn't able to... I just don't know... if I even know what's best for her." he got up and stood right in front of me, his face strained and his eyes looking straight at mine.
"Be the father, that I wasn't for her... Suzushii-san." He held my shoulder as I paused to think... I really want to help all of them... I've got to! I nodded as he let go, we all got up and bowed as we thanked each other. The young girl looked at me and got closer, her hands grasped my jacket and tightened against it. Her frown piercing through me, she said.
"I know you're "the Suzushii Kakomi", but I don't trust you! but... if you can help Sis and Dad then... whatever! just do your job..." she spouted as she ran towards the right leading to another hallway, the father sighed as he said to me.
"Forgive me, for Kana's behavior. She still doesn't believe in you... or any of the Ishiins..... ahem! thank you for letting us know about Manaka, we'll be there at the hospital later." he shook my hand as I did the same.
Fuyuki Yukinari, an assistant Ishiin; and associate. His work is extremely beneficial to the conflict, as we don't get a lot of these types of Ishii abilities anymore... without his intel and many others like him, we'd be at a very strong disadvantage...
As we left through the main hallway, I grabbed my phone and called "the number". We got in the SUV as the line was instantly answered, a formal and professional voice is heard.
"Please state your callsign." the voice said.
"This is Kilo Alpha Kilo Oscar Mike India, Grade S, Special Countersign: The Reckoner" I stated.
"Welcome back, Kakomi-san. What is your status?" the voice asked, Rushiko moving closer to listen to me.
"I've successfully taken care of the infected student's foreign aura, all across the affected schools by the Insurgent attacks. My student: Rushiko Hirotsu, dealt with the attack on Kaizen Academy alongside two other students who fended off the female berserk student controlled by the suspect. We've evacuated all the schools of their victims and now I and Rushiko are informing the parents of the three students, we'll attempt to recruit them later!" I stated as the voice didn't say anything for a whole minute, as he recorded my "status statement" which felt like ages. He replied.
"Affirmative, what is your request (if any) to the HQ?" he asked me, I immediately uttered.
"Request for a CSAR (Combat Search and Rescue) operation, the main objective is: to find Atsushi Suzuto, and the other objectives are: to relieve of the Insurgent threats in his area and to protect and evacuate the civilians affected in the said area." the voice took another minute to respond, with him confirming my request over with the higher-ups. Rushiko and I anxiously waited for the response because they were the ones that sent and made him "bait" in the first place! they wouldn't want to resc-
"They have greenlit the operation! however, you will only get two other ICA agents as backup for the said CSAR operation, they'll contact you by tomorrow please regroup at the ICA Headquarters by the next day... good luck Reckoner" he said as the both of us looked at each other and nodded, our determination finally pulled through. I replied.
"Also one more request, please call "Yanou Sato" and tell him to go to Kenko Private Hospital later this evening at 6:00 pm to check up on her daughter: Nayumi Koyo" he paused a bit, confirming the intel we have on him.
"Yes sir! we'll have the call be processed in a few minutes" he mumbled his notes and then I replied.
"Thank you Musen-san! The Reckoner out" I exclaimed as we finally left the neighborhood, we drove all across the area, finally stopping at the hospital of where they were at. Rushiko looked at me with confusion.
"Senpai, why are we at the hospital, isn't it a bit early to check on them?" he concernedly asked me.
"I know, but I want you to not only keep them company. But to wait here, since I'll be making preparations for the operation today. Though I'll be there later this evening... you'll have to get closer and know them, since you'll be mostly training them while I'm gone. Don't worry you'll have a fellow Ishiin you know personally to help you out... and umm" I paused as he got closer and waited for me to continue.
"You shouldn't worry about me... I won't end up like Kuroke, I won't let any of that happen ever again... just trust me..." I said as he nodded and embraced me, his arms tightly wrapped up against me. His light groaning against my chest, he let go as he said.
"I will Senpai, I always have... see you" he softly said as I patted his back. He left the SUV facing the huge mass of white concrete that was the hospital, its height casting a shadow over us as the clouds cleared up with the sun clearly showing. He walked over to the main entrance over my position, the revolving doors at the middle slowly spinning as he and many others went in.
I left the hospital as I went to the ICA Headquarters, to plan out what and how to deal with tomorrow's ordeal. To extract Atsushi Suzuto out of Sendai... which is near... Fukushima...
-TO BE CONTINUED-