This is Tokyo, where their disasters are planned weeks in advance and it isn't uncommon to find two or three giant robots fighting Godzilla on the highway. Have you ever wondered what their high schools could be like? This is Tokyo High.
"Get him offa my tail! If he gets any closer, he'll fly up my exhaust!" A giant mech flew through the skies above Tokyo, followed by a monstrous, flying, fire-breathing turtle. Another robot flew after the turtle and pelted it with laser blasts.
"Look, I'm tryin', okay? Just shut up and keep him distracted." The robot in chase opened up and let missiles fly from its fuselage. They homed in on the turtle and detonated against its shell, barely scathing it. "Stupid turtle! I'll bludgeon 'im to death!" The mech dove down and tore a giant steel bottle of sake off the roof of a liquor store, and continued his pursuit of the crazed reptile. Using the bottle as a weapon, he slugged the turtle out of the air and into the side of a hotel. "The power of alcohol knows no bounds!"
"Property damage! You're under arrest!" The first mech nose-dived the turtle in the chest, drilling it into the ground. With its laser cannon in the back of the thing's head, the robot proceeded to handcuff the monster with several steel girders. The other robot looked around and tried to reason with the owners of the hotel.
"Look, folks, I'm sorry about the building. Just call up the police station and ask for the Disaster Intervention Division. They'll help you out." It leaned over and tapped its associate on the shoulder. "You know it's time for school, right?" The pilot looked at his wristwatch.
"Aw, heck! It's already seven thirty! We gotta go!" He dropped the turtle on its face in the rubble, and then shot away from the dazed civilians. "Sorry, folks! We'll pick him up later!" The two pilots boostered off towards the mountains to get to school on time.
At Tokyo High, two boys ran through the gates, hurriedly tearing off pieces of their armor and gadgetry.
"I told you it was a bad idea to take the job, Hikari! I told you that we'd be late!" Hikari shrugged.
"What? It's not like we're that late. We just missed first bell by a few minutes, Kaze. Besides, we'll get paid extra for working so early. Think of the bonuses, man! I can smell a raise with our names on it!"
"Oh, never mind… by the way, where did you park the mechs?"
On a humble city block, two giant battle robots each took up fourteen parking spaces in the McDonald's parking lot.
In class, the two boys sat as quietly as possible. They were being watched from across the room.
"Oh my god. They are so hot." Several of the classroom girls were crowding each other for the best view of the two boys.
"If you ask me, they're not that impressive." A massive student, well over seven feet tall, with biceps that would have made our Governor balk, sulked in the corner.
"Oh, shove off, Denki." A young android girl, EV-7, sat behind him and threatened him with the .45 millimeter that ejected from her arm. "Let them fantasize. It's all that bimbos like them have."
"Rrrrgghhh… the giant shifted his weight, making his chair creak. "They get all the attention. What's with them? It's not like it's some big secret that they work for the mech division in the DID."
"Yeah, well, I think that their mechs could use a tune-up. They're a bit out of date." A giant machine, bigger than the already boggling Denki, sat across from the android. A young girl was attached to the mechanism, her arms connected to circuit boards and her body from the waist down completely hidden within the machinery. A pair of virtual specs donned her face, and the word KARAKURI was emblazoned across her machine's chest. "I, myself, enjoy surrounding my being with only the best technology. I couldn't handle that old model."
"That's a given," EV grunted.
"What are you guys talking about?" A portion of the wall split open in a trans-dimensional shift, letting another student step through. He shut the split after passing through it. "Anything interesting going on?"
"Just the two class heartthrobs, Fushigi," said Denki.
"Oh, it's alright, then. I'll see you guys later." The boy walked through another self-made shift and appeared across the room, sitting in his seat. Immediately following Fushigi, a boy wearing heavy goggles and a set of headphones slung his arm around Ee-Vee.
"H3y, b4b3, y0ur h34d'5 5p4rk1ll." Ee-Vee sent a crushing blow into his face that pummeled him across the room.
"Game Guy, you lay a hand on me again, and I swear to god that I will rip those headphones off your face and shove them down your throat." The boy got up and sat down at his seat, pulling out a pocket game system to distract him from the pain.
"R0x0r OMG! Wh4t'5 up w17h h3r?"
The teacher, Ms. Aburi, soon entered the class and quieted the room.
"Good morning, class. Today we have some new students, just transferring into Tokyo High. The first is a young Solarian girl from the Betelgeuse solar system. Please introduce yourself, dear." A girl with pixie-like features and two antennae stretching from behind her ears stepped into the room and blushed.
"Hello… Um, my name is–" She made a high, screeching sound followed by a guttural growl that made Ms. Aburi cringe.
"Pardon me, but is there some nickname you might have that we could pronounce? I'm afraid that your language may be… a bit difficult to pronounce." Ms. Aburi rubbed her temples and shut her eyes.
"Oh, I'm sorry… you can call me Chiga, if that's easier." She blushed again and went to her new desk. The class promptly introduced themselves to her, trading names and cell numbers. Ms. Aburi rapped on her desk.
"Class, we still have more students to introduce. Our next transfer is a werefox from Los Angeles; she and her family just moved to Tokyo." A furry stepped up to the desk and waved to the class.
"Hi, everyone! My name's Kitsune, but you can call me Kit. I like long walks on the beach and small rodents." Game Guy stood up and pointed at her face.
"OMG! 17'5 4 FL1PP1ll' W3R3W0LF F/RRY!!!" It was too late to take back what he said. In an instant, the foxgirl had crossed the room in one bound and planted her claws deep into his desk.
"You MORON! Can't you tell the difference between a werefox and a werewolf? Werewolves are shaggy and disgusting, eat people, and drink from the toilet! At least we comb our fur!" She raked her claws across the top of his desk, tearing deep chunks of wood out of it. Game Guy sat back down, sweating and babbling l337 in long strings of code. Kit took her things to her desk and sat in a huff, sheathing and unsheathing her claws as she attempted to calm her unstable temper. Ms. Aburi continued.
"Well, it seems that we have some spirit in Miss Kitsune. Oh, and Kit? Don't worry about Game Guy. He's had it coming ever since he rigged the PA to play Final Fantasy tracks for seven hours straight. Thank you." She smiled and looked at her list. "Oh, yes. Our next transfer came from Tokyo's Correctional Facility for Girls, which she bribed her way out of with her vast fortune. Come in, dear." A girl wearing only black and pink entered the room, toting an electric guitar and her book bag. A teddy bear hung from her shoulder. Half the class gasped when they realized that they were standing in the midst of the one and only Umegaki, the greatest J-rock idol in Japan! Game Guy launched himself at her feet, beating his classmates in a rush for free CD's.
"1'm ll07 w0r7hy! N07 w0r7hy!!!" He was silenced as forty pounds of electric guitar shut him up.
"I've had practice with fanboys. Call me Ume." The girl slung her guitar over her shoulder, stepping over Game Guy and going to her desk.
"Well, today's turning out to be very eventful, hm?" Ms. Aburi checked her list and announced, "Class, we only have one more transfer student. He was recently resurrected and is now joining Tokyo High. Some of you may remember him before he deceased; he used to be a resident of the city." As she said this, a ghostly apparition melted from the floor in front of her desk. His head slung to one side as he looked at them.
"Hello. My name's Inochi. I was hit by a car just a week ago, but that's okay. It wasn't your fault. You weren't driving it- you didn't step out in front of it to chase your dog across the street… it didn't splatter your organs all over the city block…" Ms. Aburi interrupted him.
"Class, you may have to get used to Inochi. He's a chronically depressed ghost."
The two boys were sitting through another boring class, counting sheep and giant, maniacal turtles. All of a sudden, the bomb siren went off and several huge explosions rocked the school. A look out the windows revealed a fleet of alien warships coming to level Tokyo.
"Excuse me, Ms. Aburi?" Hikari raised his hand. "Uh, Kaze and I need to use the bathroom. Really bad. Seriously." Ms. Aburi peered over her glasses at the two innocent-looking teenagers.
"During a bombing raid? Eh… all right. But be sure to take your hall passes." The boys grabbed their cards and sprinted out of the door. As soon as they left, Ee-Vee's arm shot up.
"Uh, sensei… doesn't it strike you as odd that they both need to go at the same time, and during a nuclear apocalypse?" Ms. Aburi looked at her without wavering.
"I believe I recall you taking a bit of a long trip the last time you went on a break."
"My battery cell died in the middle of the hall! What was I supposed to do?" The teacher laughed.
"That's no excuse."
Outside, two giant robots could be seen bashing alien ships left and right in the skies. One happened to fly off-center after being hit by a barrage of laser blasts and careened into the side of the school. Several horrible monstrosities exited the craft and began filling the room with white-hot beams of death. Their advance soon ended after the teacher's chain gun ripped them all to shreds.
"Alright, kids, everyone evacuate outside. Be sure to arm yourselves- don't let the little buggers get too close."
"I resent that," Chiga huffed.
EeVee's hands shifted into place as dual .45s, Denki pulled a pair of brass knuckles the size of Kaiser rolls from his backpack, Karakuri tugged a pair of miniguns from her back compartment, and other students pulled whatever weaponry they had brought from their book bags and loaded it.
The battle was soon over. The two mechs were assisted with backup, and none of the students had any problem handling the invasion; they had past experience with not only aliens, but also zombies and KISS band clones. Ms. Aburi, covered in soot and blood, released the students to go home.
"It'll take about an hour to build a new East Wing of the school. Today's classes are adjourned. Remember that you all have a test tomorrow- 'how best to build advanced laser technology.' Don't forget! Have a good day!"
Hikari and Kaze began their walk back to where they hid their mechs while discussing the events of the day.
"God, today was boring." Hikari folded his hands behind his head and stared at the sky. Kaze laughed and replied,
"What, not enough action for you? I was content. We put a giant turtle into custody, annihilated an entire fleet of warships, and got some new classmates. 'Course, I could go for a snack about now." Hikari pulled a pack of Instant Cup Ramen from his book bag and handed it to him.
"I brought an extra today. You can have it."
"Thanks, bro!" Kaze pulled the pin from the bottom of the cup and a bright flash erupted from the lid, followed by a small trail of steam. "Ooooo, miso. My favorite!"
"Kaze, every flavor's your favori–" He was stopped in mid-sentence as they rounded the corner to the old aircraft hangar that they kept their mechs in. He slapped his arm across Kaze's face and slammed him back into the fence that separated them from the hangar. "What the– how did they find us?" Hikari, spitting out chunks of noodle from his nose, peeked around the corner. He screamed, thereby alerting the mob of girls standing in front of the hangar to their presence. The ground began to rumble as dozens of schoolgirls rushed the fence, slamming into it with full force.
"THERE THEY ARE!!!" a girl squealed. The impact against the fence threw the boys into the street, dazed and stunned. Kaze was the first to stand, still clutching his ramen cup in his shaking hands.
"STAMPEDE! RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!!" He sprinted away, followed close behind by his brother Hikari and an unmatched destructive force: teenage girls. The two boys ran for all they were worth, which if they didn't speed up, would be a nickel less than nothing.
Racing away as fast as they could, the boys rounded a corner into an alleyway and ran straight into Kit, the young werefox from school. Kaze's ramen cup flew through the air and came to rest on Kit's head, soaking her fur with broth and noodles. Kaze froze.
"Oh… my… go–" She grabbed the two of them by their necks and slammed them into the wall. Pulling them from the cracked concrete, she ground their faces into the street. Stunned and dazed again, they felt themselves being dragged and thrown into a dumpster. Kit picked the dumpster up with her bare hands and drove the thing into the asphalt, crumpling and maiming it. She didn't notice the horde of adoring fangirls that rushed through a separate alleyway behind her. Merely seconds after the stampede had ended, she tore the mangled dumpster in half and fished out the brothers. Hikari, rubbing his bleeding head, looked around and listened to the sound of footsteps fade off into the distance.
"Hey… Kit, you saved us!" She stopped her claw-filled hand in midair.
"What? Are you blind? I'm trying to kill you, you morons." Kaze pulled a chunk of rotting burger from his hair.
"No, no, from the girls. They were chasing us. Probably would have messed us up pretty bad if they caught us, too."
"Why were they chasing you? …What did you do to them, you sickos?!?" She pulled her arm back up in the air, unsheathing her claws and ready to strike. Hikari inched back a bit from her range.
"We didn't do anything. We're just popular."
"Completely unintentionally, of course," Kaze added. Kit huffed.
"What makes the two of you so popular?" Hikari scratched his head.
"I don't know."
"Our good looks?" Kaze suggested
"The fact that we're stinking rich?" Hikari added.
"Our dad is the Commander of the DID?"
"Our mechs and great piloting skills?" Kit watched the two of them with wonder– at their stupidity. "You know, it actually isn't that hard to figure out, once you think about it," Hikari said. "And by any chance, could you stop maiming us?" Kit looked at them and laughed.
"You morons stole my thunder. I'm done." She brushed noodles from her fur and growled. "But you know I'm gonna get you for this." Kaze moaned.
"You haven't already?" Kit laughed again.
"No, just kidding. I've had my fun." She picked up her book bag and walked off.
"Well, Hikari, did that spruce up your day enough for you?" Kaze rubbed at a bruise on his cheek as his brother bandaged his bleeding leg.
"Oh, yeah. I think I've had enough fun for one day. Race you back to the mechs, though."
"You're on!" The two teenagers hobbled away, grateful to have made peace with perhaps the deadliest student in class.
The next morning, the boys were flying their mechs to school and recapping on the events of the previous day.
"You know, when you think about it, Kit's kinda hot." Kaze grinned behind his mic.
"Well, I'll give her credit for having spirit." Hikari gingerly touched a bandage on his forehead.
"And she's hot!"
"And she has a great sense of humor…"
"Kaze, shut up." The boys amped up the speed, nearing an old warehouse they had chosen as their new hiding spot. A missile narrowly grazed one of Kaze's boosters, sending his mech into a barrel roll to avoid the explosion.
"Who the heck shot that at my baby?!?" The brothers scanned the area, trying to find the attacker. Out of nowhere, a massive mech pummeled Hikari out of the sky.
"Seniors! Run, Kaze!" Hikari plummeted to the ground, smashing their warehouse under the robot's bulk. Kaze made a dash to help his brother, but was stopped as his fuel dropped to 0, his boosters choked, and his missile compartments fused shut. Kaze's mech fell to the ground, crashing near Hikari. The Senior inside the enemy mech flicked his exterior P.A. on.
"What's wrong, Freshmeat? Can't have a little fun on the way to school?" The mech descended and landed in front of them, opening the cockpit to reveal a teenager only a few years older than them. His age, however, did not do justice to his physique; he could easily have pounded either Hikari or Kaze flat.
"You Seniors think you can get away with anything! We're gonna sue you so much, your mech's gonna go to the scrap heap to pay the whiplash!" Hikari would have said more, but his cockpit shuddered and crashed shut in his face. A faint "ouch" could be heard from inside. Kaze climbed out of his mech and rode a zipline to the ground. In an instant, the zipline's metal alloy string rusted and snapped, sending Kaze to the asphalt. A teenage girl, probably the same age as the Senior boy, stepped from the shadows.
"Oh, dear. It seems you've been having some bad luck." She touched her left index finger to her forehead and pointed her right at a billboard. In seconds, the metal posts crumpled and the sign crashed on Hikari's mech. She checked her watch and yelled at the other Senior, "Hey, Aku! School's starting! We should get going!" Aku groaned and shut his cockpit canopy.
"Oh, well. I guess we'll have to continue this later. Come on, Jinx! Later, Freshmeat!" Jinx climbed onto one of the mech's gauntleted hands as the boosters kicked in and shot the robot out of sight.
The boys limped into school nearly an hour late, still administering gauze and Neosporin.
"That jerk even opened up the cuts I got from yesterday," Kaze whined as he rubbed at a bandage on his arm.
"Well, we should have been more careful. There's been a lot of violence between the Freshmen and Seniors lately. Remember last week? Ee-Vee came in missing an arm."
"Yeah, and Fushigi got mugged, too. I'm gonna do a search query on those two- Jinx and Aku, right?" Kaze nodded. They made it to the doors and hobbled inside.
"What the heck happened to you two? I didn't mess you up that bad, did I?" Kit was walking to lunch with Kaze and Hikari. She tugged on a gauze strap hanging off the back of Hikari's head.
"We got jumped this morning. Seniors caught us off guard while we were flying to school and pounded us into the dirt." Hikari pulled his laptop out and logged into the student server, punching in the names of their attackers. "Here they are- student # 3957, Mitsurugi Aku; and student # 2945, Jinx. Her last name isn't listed. Aku's been held back twice- once in the eighth grade and then in his first Senior year. He's been on probation fourteen times, was taken to Juvenile twice, and made four teachers quit their jobs. He's a brilliant mechanic, though- his mech that we fought was almost completely built by him. Let's see… ah, Jinx. The server doesn't have information on her age, family, or past schools. She just joined Tokyo High her Sophomore year. It's like she just popped out of nowhere. She's also caused the resignation of three teachers; it says they quit due to two cases of extreme paranoia and one of insanity. She also has a reputation for causing bad luck; last year, two of her boyfriends were hospitalized because of freak accidents while they were with her." Kara interrupted when she sat her suit down next to the three of them.
"Hey, guys, whatcha doin'?" She looked at the computer screen and gasped. "What are you trying to find out about her? That… she… I…" Kara started to hyperventilate. Kit leaped to her side as Hikari punched in a command on her suit that regulated her oxygen limit.
"What's wrong, Kara? What's going on?" Kaze tried to calm her.
"She… that girl… I know her… she almost killed me!" She sobbed. "It was last year, when I was in the eighth grade. It was before I was stuck in this…" She touched her suit's armor. "I was walking home one day after school, and a little boy was running from something. He was screaming, 'she's after me,' over and over again. I ran after him to try and calm him down, and then she stepped out of the alleyway. She just stood there and looked at me, and then at the little boy. Then she pointed her finger straight at him and smirked… I don't know what happened, but the building he was standing next to started crumbling, and the whole wall began to fall apart. I ran and shoved him out of the way, but a brick fell on my ankle and broke it. I couldn't run away- the wall fell, and the debris crushed my legs. That girl just walked right on past me, like she didn't even care. After she left, I passed out- and woke up in E.R., attached to this." She brushed her hand against the suit.
"Kara, I'm sorry..." Kit sat down next to her. Before she could say anything else, shadow fell over the four of them.
"Awww... such a sad story. It brought a tear to my eye..." Jinx tapped the edge of the table and stepped away as it split and broke. "But it's okay, isn't it? I thought that we were over that..."
"Get the hell away from me." Kara's massive arm slipped open to reveal a hidden minigun. "Or I will personally kill you here and now." She was breathing heavily, sweat dropping from her face.
"Okay, okay, I get the picture. I'll leave...for now." She sauntered off, tripping another Freshman carrying his tray full of food.
After she had gone, the four had gotten back to talking to try and relieve the tension in the air. Kaze was in the middle of throwing ketchup-covered straws at the ceiling when the P.A. squealed at him, throwing his toss off-center.
"Dear students, may I have your attention please..."
"Wait a sec- that sounds like Aku on the P.A...."
"I regret to inform you that the Senior class has made a rather rash decision. I had hoped it wouldn't come to this, cough but we have decided to officially declar war against the Freshman class. As for the Sophomore and Junior classes, we give you our apologies for being caught in the middle of all of this. Have a nice day."