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~Lightning and Wind~ Chapter Nine

Chapter Nine

 

Kamijou hung by the railing of the boat. He and Accelerator decided not to get Mikoto involved any further and took action accordingly. She would probably never forgive him, but he’d rather her be alive and hating him, than dead.

Lessar sat on the mast of the boat—despite it moving using a motor—dangling her legs in the air. She had dressed in her New Light outfit, with her bag that could store nearly anything in a hammer space. The rest of New Light would not be participating in the battle, but they gave her several new spiritual items to assist her and Mikoto. Lessar had been oddly silent to Kamijou, but in truth she was holding a telepathic conversation with Misaka Mikoto and Eight, who were in her bag, floating around in what seemed like endless space.

Kanaloa. He’s a major god of their pantheon, who is symbolized by an octopus and commanded the seas, winds, and seismic activities. He was the opposite of the highest power of the Hawaiian Pantheon, Kane, playing as his counter-balance. He was painted as the god of the Underworld and evil harbinger of death, but that wasn’t the case originally.

That element was introduced once Missionaries tried to recast them in the image of the Christianity Trinity, along with him playing Satan. It’s basically the same as I told you about the Norse Pantheon. Milu was the original god of the Underworld; but whether he was evil or not is still undetermined. Kanaloa wasn’t evil, otherwise he couldn’t counter-balance K­ane.

So, if this guy who took Milu’s name is using the…what was it?

The Eye of Kanaloa, which represents his throne; using the symbol as a medium to reach him, he intends to summon Kanaloa to this plane. Using that core-thingy that your sister had as an energy source, he might be able to sustain it indefinitely. Although, would the symbol alone be enough to reach a god, even based on the idol theory?

Misaka reports that the core was not in her pouch when she awakened. Only the M.E.S.D.O, Misaka says while floating in the pocket dimension of this small bag.

So they may have it already? Either way, can he control a god? Mikoto asked.

I don’t think so, Lessar responded. Fiamma was a special case with the Archangel. But given their nature so far, would GREMLIN need to control it? Or would they just transport it near the headquarters of the Science Side and let it run wild?

So, if they could control it, they’ve got a weapon that can be focused on a target, but if they couldn’t then it would just be a bomb that would destroy everything around it indiscriminately?

It’s actually worse. If they summon Kanaloa in his original state, he would probably be non-aggressive and attempt to return to his throne, which might be bad. But if they summon him as he was painted by the Missionaries…well, it’d be worse than the Archangel, who only attempted to get back to its proper place in heaven. It’d bring about the end of the world…

Mikoto gulped at the scale of what she was getting involved in. And that spiky-haired idiot gets involved in this all the time? How is he alive?

Made of iron, great allies, and some fairly decent luck—despite what he claims. Lessar chuckled. That right hand too. There have been rumors going around that it’s of divine origin.

Mikoto was about to say something else when her electroperception began acting up. It felt like numerous dots were waiting in the water below, made of metal and giving off faint electrical signals, almost like…

Lessar, stop the boat! There are mines in the water!

Lessar yelled for them to stop the boat, which made Birdway slightly angered at the delay, before she dived into the water, disappearing beneath the surface for several minutes. When she resurfaced and climbed back on the boat, she said, “There are mines all along the path to the island. Science Side.”

“Mark, can you do something?” Birdway asked. Her abilities would probably cause more destruction than the mines themselves.

Mark Space shook his head. “Not for all of them. I’d suggest flying as an alternative, but…” he looked over to Kamijou’s right hand. That alone would end the attempts at flying. Accelerator probably could have used his abilities to part the ocean like the Moses, but there was a much simpler solution.

Lessar opened her bag, and Misaka Mikoto and Eight emerged.

Birdway had a look on her face that basically said she expected them to come along anyway, Accelerator looked annoyed, Kamijou looked shocked, and the rest were generally uninterested. Mikoto stared at Kamijou; her right hand was not only electrically charged, but filled with some sort of eldritch energy that made Orsola and Sebastian seem on edge, while Birdway pulled out a camera and gave it to Mark Space, telling him not to miss the next shot, and she took notes on this fascinating energy.

Mikoto followed up on her vow.

She slapped him.

***

In England…

“Ow,” several members of Neccessarius cried at a sharp sting on their faces.

Even the Saint, who was with her friend—the washing machine—was not immune.

***

In Academy City…

“Wah!” a child-like teacher cried, with tears in her eyes.

“My face hurts,” a girl who was barely noticeable said while rubbing her cheeks.

“W-what was that?” an artificial angel in human form commented.

“What the hell?” a certain—accused—shota-con teleporter looked around for whatever hit her.

“Wow,” the brain behind a director said, staring at a piece of chocolate she had bitten on. “These things have a kick!”

“Why do I have the feeling that idiot is behind this?” a girl with an obsession with health goods thought out loud.

“Meow!” the new beast heroine cried.

***

On the boat…

“Myougah!” Index let out, “I-Is this sympathetically linked magic? But Espers can’t use magic!”

Orsola was silently rubbing her own red cheek, Mikoto had also winced on delivery, and Eight mentioned that the entire Network had suddenly felt pain—except Worst, who was laughing her butt off, and Last Order, who preferred Accelerator. Birdway was the same as Worst.

“Damn,” Lessar mumbled, “even I felt that one…she could give Bayloupe lessons.”

Kamijou had been knocked overboard with the slap.

“Leave me behind, will you!?” Mikoto yelled.

Fukou da…were his final thoughts as he sank beneath the waves. Accelerator just walked to the other end of the boat, probably afraid he was next.

***

“Now that that’s out of the way,” Birdway said before chuckling at the handprint left on Kamijou’s face, “can you deal with the mines?”

Mikoto complied, reaching out with her senses and feeling the cold steel of the floating mines in the water. As if countless hands extended from her, the mines were raised out of the water slowly. The numbers were small at first, but as more surfaced, they quickly passed the triple digits and further. GREMLIN probably had no intention of retrieving them once they summoned Kanaloa. If someone else had stumbled into the island’s waters by accident, there’s no doubt they’d have been sunk.

Index’s eyes widened at the presence of magical energy at work. Looking at the sky above, an army of black dots were arriving—all Kapua being controlled by the enemy. Lessar pointed Mikoto in their direction, and the countless hands of magnetism threw every last mine at the dots. The sky briefly became orange, followed by a rain of feathers.

“Well, they know we’re coming,” Birdway mumbled before turning to Mark Space. “Mark, punch it!”

He set the boat into high gear and they tore through the waves, cutting them as they made their way to the island. They were nearly in sight of the island, when the water in front of them was hit by a cyclone. It intertwined with the water and became a mini-hurricane. It would soon engulf the boat.

Lessar and Mark Space commanded the wind, releasing a cross-blade of razor sharp wind that split the hurricane apart. As a final trial, a blue gem fell from the sky and into the water, which swirled around to take the form of giant, humanoid figure. It tried to bring its colossal hand down on them, to sink them into the deep waters below, but streaking orange trail penetrated the giant’s core. The following gale disrupted its body and the water parted, allowing the boat safe passage.

They could see the island dead ahead, and beach was swarming with various Kapua seen during Birdway’s battle. There were at least a few hundred gathered where the boat was going to land, and the island was covered with more. Kamijou sighed and said, “Fukou da…those are bad odds…”

“For them,” Accelerator said, as he flipped the switch on his collar and leapt off the boat—at least a hundred feet in the air—and gently landed in the gathering of Kapua. Upon contact with the ground, it immediately created crater nine feet deep—one that shifted the ground of that half of the entire island despite only having a radius five times that of the crater itself. Earth was overturned and a fearsome wave of air and earth blasted all the Kapua aside. Some tried to resist, but they were torn to pieces that were scattered by the force nevertheless.

Accelerator jerked his head inwards, telling them to land the boat there, before he stomped the ground and vanished, undoubtedly looking for Milu. The boat slid passed the water and onto the ground, shaking vigorously to the point that it nearly threw Index overboard until Kamijou grabbed her and pulled her in.

“Well,” Lessar crouched on the railing, looking at the gathering Kapua that were crashing through the shrubbery of the island, coming after them she was sure. “It looks like we’re storming the place.”

***

When Lessar said storming, she wasn’t kidding. Out of all the people on their side, Kamijou, Index, Orsola, and Eight were the only ones who were still at the level where they could be considered humans. The rest were monsters.

Birdway had her Western Broadsword out instead of her staff, slicing through even stone with what seemed to be no friction, Telesma coursing through her blade from a ritual she performed after the battle yesterday—between tormenting Kiak, who was regretting his words to her—making the weapon on similar to those wielded by minor angels of war. It was safe to assume there was no material on earth it couldn’t cut.

Mark Space was using his Tarot cards to the same effect he had during the previous battle. A few of them were infused with Telesma from the last time he called upon Uriel, but those were for emergency use only. Just in case they couldn’t prevent the Kanaloa from rising, Telesma would become a necessary weapon.

Mikoto had no hesitation against Kapua. Upon landing on the beach, she immediately carved a deep gash into the beach with her personal reality, creating iron sand en mass to be used as her primary weapon. It swirled around her like a twister, as she used her power over magnetism to create a platform for her to fly on, carrying her sister and Lessar—she tried to make a separate one for Kamijou, but he kept accidently cutting the link between her and it, making it falling apart.

Poor Kamijou had to travel on foot.  Eight on the other hand, was using the Network to reconfigure the M.E.S.D.O for anti-personnel use rather than anti-army, which cut her connection with the Network, based on the simulations ran by Last Order. It was still under development, so she wasn’t really focusing on the battle—it wasn’t like Mikoto needed help, and Lessar had jumped down to get in on the action herself.

When she unlocked the sphere and saw what was at the center, she finally figured out what happened to the perpetual energy core. It was powering the M.E.S.D.O, which was how it could have such a high output at full power. Meanwhile, Accelerator was basically off doing his own thing, killing a few of the puppet masters that tried to attack him, and whatever else got in his way.

At some point, Sebastian possessed the largest Pokaku he could find—a towering giant of thirty feet—and proceeded to literally smash the smaller ones under its feet. Index and Orsola were riding on his shoulders, with Orsola casting a spell that shrouded the two women divine protection. Sebastian wasn’t cutting completely loose because he didn’t want to throw them off, but he was still pretty wild.

From behind a bush, an explosion occurred as Kamijou passed it, tripping a wire. It was a claymore, releasing a mass of ball bearings that would tear apart the Imagine Breaker’s body. Time slowed, as Kamijou’s senses entered hyper-awareness, but his body couldn’t keep up. It seemed like his death had come.

Time moved normally again and the ball bearings flew fast as bullets, meeting with a wall of compressed, thick iron sand rather than soft flesh. He was saved. Mikoto’s eyes weren’t on him, but the moment she sensed the claymore, she willed the iron sand to protect him. The wall exploded outward into multiple tendrils that launched themselves at the rest claymores hidden above and underground, destroying them before they could harm anyone else, and gathering the ball bearing, which were grinded by the vibrating iron sand and mixed in.

While Mikoto was essentially splitting her mind in order to effectively protect Kamijou and fight, she used her hands to control the tendrils of iron sand, which branched out and pierced nearly five dozen Kapua at once. A few Ahi tried to mimic Pel, super-heating it to render the magnetism null, but a sharp gale of wind—followed by several more—sliced and diced them to pieces that were blown away. Lessar had been busy building a high Kapua body count of her own.

Birdway had finally found three of the puppet masters, her broadsword drawn. The three looked at each other, and then pulled out sub-machine guns and opened fire. What they seemed to have forgotten was that Birdway had once fought against a Saint on even ground, and she was just as fast; the bullets only flew through empty space, as a soft tap on the ground was the only sound she made when she landed behind them, her sword covered in what served as their blood. They fell apart into slightly less than a dozen pieces each.

The Kapua that were around her were no longer under control, but they were still hostile. She tossed the sword into the air—where it rotated several times—before she caught the handle and slammed the Telesma infused blade into the ground. An explosion of white energy incinerated the immediate area in an updraft.

Sebastian put down the two girls once he ran into several Pokaku in the same weight class as him. He used his massive legs to deliver a kick to one’s chest, placing one of the creatures on the ground, and grabbed it by both legs before twirling it around and slamming it into the second one. The third one managed to land a blow on his face, but Sebastian quickly raised it into the air, and dropped it on his knee. It broke in half and the rest of it was stomped on—repeatedly.

“Oh my,” Orsola muttered, “we really must work on his temper.”

Meanwhile, Eight finally finished reconfiguring the M.E.S.D.O. The hexagons broke apart—leaving the core levitating in her hands—and began circling them using a magnetic field, each firing individual bolts of lightning while moving in a robotic pattern because of the immense calculation power of the Network. Anything that was missed by the iron sand was caught by lightning from multiple angles.

The slaughter went on, until a massive Kapua that stood on even ground as the mountain it was next to emerged. Everyone looked up at it. It was as if they were simple ants staring at a very tall basketball player. The sound of shattering glass quickly ended that though. Kamijou walked past it as if it wasn’t even there and touched it with his index finger. They had no more time to waste on cannon fodder.

***

“Any sign of this Milu guy, or the Descendants?” Birdway asked once they all gathered, minus Accelerator. “We need to find them?”

“I’ve been tracking the source of the energy being used for the ritual,” Index pointed towards the mountain on the island, “it’s coming from in that mountain. There are three points, the majority of it being focused on the top.”

So they ventured into the brush and towards the mountain.

***

Mikoto and Eight were invaluable. Their abilities allowed them to destroy the various traps hidden in the brush around the mountain. By the time they reached the base of the mountain, they all had to take a quick rest. Accelerator was nowhere to be seen, but occasionally they heard explosions coming from around the island, so they assumed he was just mopping up the rest of the Kapua.

Mark Space got off his cell phone and said, “They’ve had no luck in finding the core back on the main island.”

Mikoto had forced all the metal and iron sand that she gathered into a container as small as her coin holster—reverse engineered using the same technique as the bag Lessar carried—for use later. You never know when you were going to need a little help. Lessar was stretching on the other hand, with a smile on her face from the battle—it had been awhile since she could cut loose. Eight was standing at a cave mouth that presumably led towards the two minor magical energies that Index had sensed.

“About that, Misaka says while—” whatever Eight was about to say was cut off by a fierce gale with hurricane force. Lessar was swept off her feet and crashed into Misaka and Eight, sending all three girls into an open cave mouth, which was immediately sealed off by a wall of thick ice. The wind died, and Kamijou’s right fist shattered the ice, but the cave mouth collapsed on itself, sealing them in.

The girls slid down a smooth rock surface like a water slide, until they encountered a split and were separated. Eight and Mikoto went to the left, and Lessar to the right. The pathway twisted and turned, until they were dropped into a forty-foot fall from above. Mikoto released the gathered iron sand and used it to cushion her and Eight’s fall, while—in another chamber—Lessar landed on the ground—covered in snow—without much problem.

Red electric streamers were all around Mikoto and Eight, coming from the figure standing in front of them. It was Pel, who stared at them and said, “Pele339—the one who reigns over volcanoes.” Heat poured out of her to the point it was a visible red aura.

Lessar faced Poli, who frowned before reciting her sorcery name, “Haukea993—the one who invites others to a gentle, eternal sleep.” Frost and snow turned the chamber into a winter land.

Lessar pulled out her Steel Glove and proudly pronounced her sorcery name, “Vindr159—one who stands with the wind.” This battle was now for keeps.

 

Notes:

  • GREMLIN uses both science and magic, so I figured they’d have a couple of science weapons in the arsenal. Pel and Poli won’t because they are pure magicians; they have a disdain for science in general.
  • Kamijou was only slightly useful with so much going on, I mean Imagine Breaker is great for small numbers, but with everything going on, he’d get hit by a stray attack or interfere.
  • Pele and Poli’s sorcery names were “Volcanoes” and “White Snow” in Hawaiian, while Lessar’s was “Wind” in Norse. I figured rather than give them Latin sorcery names I’d stick with more exotic names.
  • Okay we’re approaching the final battle now. No one gets away unscratched.

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