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What comes to mind when you hear the word “ninja”?
Maybe you are picturing shuriken, kunai, smoke bombs, and cloths made to blend in with the wall. You might even imagine someone clasping their hands in front of their chest and reciting some strange incantation.
But none of that is accurate.
A ninja has electronically-controlled multipurpose goggles and an outfit made from bulletproof and bladeproof spiderweb fibers, chemical winches made from a high-polymer water-absorbing gel or electric-potential-elastic belt cylinders.
That was considered the bare minimum these days.
In the abandoned B3 underground plaza of a large train station, Sugiyado Souha, a 17-year-old boy with a scar on his face, was crouched down while holding a metal cylinder the size of a large water bottle with lots of holes in the side. He wore a half-sleeved dress shirt, loose pants, and a large scarf. It was all old and worn out.
The boy was facing two fighting groups of kunoichis.
On one side was Kuhou Ouka. She was a girl of 13 or 14 with her long chestnut hair worn in twintails. She wore a special fiber outfit that fit snugly to her young bodylines and she held a hunting gun with two stacked barrels, a bayonet, and a multipurpose sight that resembled binoculars.
On the other side was Shirazaya Guren and Suiren. Those identical girls of 16 or 17 had semi-long blonde hair. They could only be distinguished by the white or red extensions attached next to one of their ears and by the flower decorations in their hair. The two slender girls each held a special-steel ninja sword and a kusarigama.
They both wore skintight full-body suits with kimono-like attachments worn on top to hide what would otherwise show through. They way the fluttering cloth drew the eye every time they moved may have been one of the weapons long used by the female ninjas known as kunoichis.
None of them needed to say anything at this point.
Without any signal, all three girls moved in perfect unison, as if they had stolen each other’s thoughts. With their very first step, they kicked off the ground, flew through the air, and kicked off the station’s pillars and walls to flip around.
Each time Ouka swung her bayonet, liquid nitrogen or flamethrower blades would fly out as if to slice across the entire plaza, but the twins Guren and Suiren still pressed closer with their sleeveless white kimono tops and short pleated skirts giving them a cheerleader-like silhouette. The flashy and astonishing attack was a bluff. The stacked-barrel hunting gun could select between types of ammo, so the twins used their special-steel blades to accurately cut down the bullets meant to actually hit them. Their point-blank range exchanges continued from there. Both sides were only young girls.
Their spiderweb ninja suits were several dozen times as strong as steel, but a direct hit from one of those killing moves could still slice their slender bodies in two. After all, they had trained their bodies, chosen their equipment, and come here for that purpose.
Sugiyado could not stand it any longer, so he shouted to them.
“Stop this! Keep this up and you’ll die!!”
Both sides briefly came to a stop.
No, for a brief moment, Kuhou Ouka and Shirazaya Guren and Suiren’s killer intent was diverted elsewhere.
“Who do you think we’re doing this for in the first place!?” shouted those cutting-edge kunoichis. “And whose side are you on anyway!!!???”
Ugh, thought Sugiyado Souha while looking up toward the sky.
He lamented to himself while confirming the sensation of the sealed poison gas container in his hands.
How did I find myself in this mess?
It all began just a few days earlier.
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