Prologue - Separated
The black-haired boy sat in his desk, staring out the window. Clouds covered the sky, so only a minimal amount of sunlight reached the classroom. His blue eyes stared vacantly outside, his mind wandering. He paid no attention to the lesson being held while his fingers tapped absently on the notebook on his desk.
“Oi, Accelerator. Are you paying attention?”
The voice of a woman brought him out of his peaceful thoughts. He turned his head to look at the teacher, Yomikawa Aiho. She was holding an open book in her hand labeled “English”. Her back was to the board and she stood behind a podium. Her dark hair was pulled into a ponytail and her blue eyes stared at him.
The teacher’s words had the entire class staring at the boy.
“You know, this is going to be on the test, so you should-“ Aiho was cut off by the boy’s next words.
“Yeah, yeah. I’ll pay more attention.” Accelerator said with a dismissive wave.
“Listen here…” Aiho started before she was cut off by a tone signaling that the class had ended. She closed the book in her hands and began to walk out. “Start paying more attention.” She said on her way out, but the boy paid her no mind.
Accelerator picked up his notebook and pen and put them back into his bag and stood up. He looked to his right as a girl approached him.
The girl’s shoulder-length brown hair swayed as she made her way over to him. Her short uniform skirt swayed with her hair as she walked over. It was his childhood friend and classmate – Misaka Mikoto.
“You know,” Mikoto started as she stopped in front of the boy. “You should really pay more attention! We’re in high school now, so you should act like it.” Her hands were held behind her back as she looked up at him with those brown eyes of hers. Her silver hairclip glinted in the small amount of sunlight that reached them.
“I am acting like it.” Accelerator countered. “I just know this stuff already, so why should I have to take notes and listen to his boring lectures? Besides,” He mumbled. “You’re in the middle school section. You’re just taking high school classes.”
“Look here…” Mikoto said with a twinge of annoyance in her voice. “We were very lucky to make it into Nagatenjouki Academy. It’s a privilege to be able to attend this school. Not many people get in here. You need top grades and a lot of money or a scholarship to get in.”
Accelerator sighed as the girl continued her lecture on how he should act more mature. He sighed. This was a conversation they had already had many times. They had only been in school for a little over a month and yet this was the fifth time Mikoto had given him this lecture. Finally, he smiled and placed a hand on her head.
“Look. I promise I’ll pay more attention, so stop lecturing me already, okay?” He ruffled her hair with his hand gently.
“I’m just worrying about you.” Mikoto said as she looked down.
“Come on, if you look like that, you’ll make me sad.” Accelerator said as he removed his hand from her head and returned it to his side.
Mikoto smiled up at him. “Good!” She said.
“Now, go grab your bag and let’s grab something to eat on the way home.”
“Right!” Mikoto ran back over to her desk near the center of the classroom and picked up her bag. Accelerator grabbed his bag and walked over. “Let’s go!” Mikoto said energetically as she led the way out of the classroom, the boy following closely behind her.
They walked down the hallway, which was usually packed with students, but since it was Friday, most of them had rushed out of the school. The only exceptions being those who had club activities. Meetings on Friday’s was one of the reasons Accelerator had chosen not to join a club. He preferred to have his weekend free so he could hang out with friends or do whatever he wanted.
“So, Mikoto,” Accelerator said, getting the girl’s attention. “Should we go alone, or get somebody else?” He could think of several people who would enjoy going with them.
“I wonder…” Mikoto said as she put a finger to her lips in thought.
Just then, a blonde haired boy with dark eyes tapped Accelerator on the shoulder as he matched his pace. “Hey, Accelerator, Mikoto.” It was Kakine Teitoku, a boy the two had met in their early years of middle school. The three had quickly become good friends.
Accelerator turned and smiled. “Hey, Teitoku. I was wondering when you were going to show up.”
“Hey, Teitoku.” Mikoto said with a smile.
“So, what are you two doing to do?” Teitoku asked as they continued their walk down the hallway. They reached a set of stairs and began their descent.
“We were just thinking about grabbing something to eat.” Mikoto replied. “Do you want to come with us?” She kept pace with Accelerator down the steps while Teitoku ran down them and waited, looking up at the two.
“Hm… It’s Friday, so why not? It’s not like I have any plans or anything.”
“Good.” Accelerator said as the two reached the boy. “So, can you think of anybody else who would like to come?” The three began to make their way towards the school’s entrance.
Teitoku thought for a few seconds. The groups footsteps echoed off the walls off yet another empty hallway. “How about Misaki? I’m sure she would love to come.”
“Ah, good idea.” Accelerator said, taking out his cellphone. “I’ll give her a call.”
The three reached the empty entrance and switched their shoes. Accelerator went through his contacts for a few seconds before reaching the one he was looking for. He clicked the call button and brought the phone to his ear as the group walked out of the school.
After a few seconds a voice answered from the other side.
“Hello?” Accelerator heard a girl’s voice say.
“Hey, Misaki. It’s Accelerator.” He replied.
“Oh, Accelerator! Hey! Is something up?”
“Teitoku, Mikoto, and I were just going to grab a bite to eat. Do you want to come along?”
“Yes! I’d love to!” The voice replied from the other side. “I left with some friends, but I can meet you there. Where are we going?”
“The usual.” The boy replied.
“Okay! I’ll be waiting!” Accelerator heard the sound that signaled that the girl had hung up.
“Well,” Accelerator said as they walked through the school grounds. “Looks like Misaki’s up for it.” They exited the school grounds and made their way through the streets of the city.
The friends lived in Academy City. Its name was derived from the amount of middle schools, high schools, and universities that filled the city. Out of 2.3 million people living in the city, 80% were students. Academy City was also unique in another way, the technology in the city was around 20 years more advanced than the rest of the world. This city in Japan had another unique quality to it. All of the students in the city were Espers. An Esper was a person who had been injected with chemicals and had other procedures done to their bodies in order to acquire supernatural powers.
However, these supernatural powers do not make a person all-powerful. Espers can only use their powers for a small period of time before they need to recharge again. Also, the person needed to go through complex calculations in their mind to actually use their power efficiently. How efficient one is with their power, along with the amount of time they are able to keep it active for, determines the Esper’s level. The levels range from level 0, which are those with no powers, to level 5, which are those who are incredibly powerful. As of now, there are only seven level 5’s in the entire city.
The most time a person has been able to activate their power for is thirty minutes, and that person is…
Accelerator looked up as the group walked down one of the various streets. They walked by many shops and stopped a few times for Mikoto to look in the window to see what they had. After taking a good fifteen minutes more than they should have, the group arrived at the restaurant.
Accelerator pushed the door open and allowed Mikoto and Teitoku to walk in before he entered.
A waitress ran up to the three. She looked like one of those new, overly-positive waitresses. “Just 3? Would you like a table or a booth?” She asked with a kind smile. The girl looked kind of young to be a waitress. She had dark blue hair and eyes to match. She wore a blue skirt with a blue shirt and a nametag that said: Tsuchimikado Maika.
“Actually,” Teitoku said. “We’re meeting somebody here.”
“Heeey! Over here!” A voice called out, drawing the group’s attention.
They looked over to see a girl waving at them from across the restaurant. The three walked past the waitress and made their way over to the booth she sat at. The booth was large enough to fit three people on each side, so Accelerator and Teitoku sat on one side, while the girls sat on the other.
This girl, Shokuhou Misaki, has long blonde hair that fell below her waist. She had eyes that were a nice shade of yellow. She also wore the Nagatenjouki uniform and carried a small white purse with her.
“Hey, Misaki.” Teitoku said as they took their seats. “Sorry we kept you waiting. Mikoto here had to stop and take a look at every shop we passed by.”
“Hey!” Mikoto said before Misaki put her hands up to try to calm her down.
“It’s okay, really. I was only waiting for a few minutes.” She smiled at the group. “Which reminds me!” She said suddenly, making the three look at her. “I invited Gunha, so he should be here soon as well.”
“Oh yeah.” Accelerator said, thinking. “I was thinking about inviting him, but it slipped my mind.”
“Nice to know you think about me!” A voice said from the side.
The group looked over to see a boy with black hair and black eyes approaching them. The boy, Sogiita Gunha, walked over to the table and sat down next to Teitoku.
The group greeted him and Maika walked over, asking for their orders. After they had placed their orders, the group relaxed some.
“Man, I’m glad it’s the weekend.” Teitoku said. “School’s so boring. I wish we didn’t have to attend.”
“I know what you mean.” Accelerator said.
Maika walked over and placed drinks in front of them before bowing and taking her leave.
The group leaned forward and took began to drink from their respective cups. They all leaned back and Mikoto opened her mouth to say something when a loud noise stopped her.
The door was kicked open, breaking some of the glass and a man with a mask on walked in. He held a gun in his right hand which he aimed at the ceiling and shot once, causing some women in the restaurant to scream.
“Everybody stay quiet and don’t move!” The man yelled out. He walked over to Maika and pointed the gun at her. “Take all the money out of the register and put it into this!” He shoved a brown bag into her hands. “Now!” He yelled.
Maika began to do as she was told and started putting the money into the bag. Gunha slid out of the booth, followed by Teitoku and Accelerator.
Accelerator walked forward. “Let me handle this.” The two nodded at him as he walked forward.
The robber turned to point the gun at him. “Hey you! I said don’t move!”
Accelerator continued to approach the man, not even the slightest hint of fear on his face. “And what are you? Some petty robber with no ability?” He smiled. “That’s just sad. You really shouldn’t be hurting the weak.” He stopped a safe distance from the man.
“No ability!? I’ll show you, you asshole!” He held out his left hand and a ball of fire formed in his right hand. “Die!” He yelled as he threw the ball at Accelerator, who made no attempt to dodge it. The ball hit the ground in front of him and erupted into flames all around him.
The group of friends watched from the booth.
“That’ll teach you!” The man said with a smile. “Now…” He turned back to Maika.
“Is that really all you have?”
“Wha-?” The robber turned back to the flames just in time to see them start swirling in a torrent. The boy could be seen in the middle of the torrent. The flames spun around him for a few seconds before disappearing, leaving behind a small amount of smoke.
Accelerator stood there, his hair now white and his eyes red. He was completely unscathed and he had a bored expression.
“If that’s all you have,” Accelerator started. “Then you’re more pitiful than I thought.”
“What the hell!?” The robbed yelled as he took a step back.
“What’s wrong? Never fought someone as powerful as me before?” Accelerator smiled. He started to walk towards the man.
The robber once again pointed the gun at Accelerator, this time aiming for his head. He pulled the trigger and sent a bullet flying at him. The bullet sped towards Accelerator and the second before it made contact with him, it flew back, hitting the man’s gun out of his hand and sending it spiraling towards the door.
“Is that all? Now then…” Accelerator said as he took a step forward.
The man reached into his pocket, probably to get another weapon out, but Accelerator didn’t give him the chance. Accelerator planted his foot and pushed forward, shooting himself at nearly the speed of sound to stop in front of the man. He grabbed the man’s arm with one hand and hit the back of his head with the other, stunning him for a second. Accelerator used this second to kick the man’s feet out from under him, letting the man land hard on his back.
The man looked up at the boy and managed to get some words out. “Who… are you?”
“Me?” Accelerator asked, putting a hand to his chest. He frowned and returned his hand to his side as he walked to stand over the man. “I’m Accelerator.” He said and kicked the man in the head, making the man lose consciousness.
Accelerator sighed and his hair returned to its normal shade of black except that now, the tips of some of the hair that hung around his neck were a dark shade of grey. His eyes also returned to their normal blue. He walked back over to his friends, ignoring to cheers from the patrons of the restaurant.
“Well, I guess that’s that then, huh?” Teitoku said as he clapped Accelerator on the shoulder.
Gunha did the same. “Good job.” He said with a smile.
The group took their seats at the boot again.
“That was nice of you.” Mikoto said with a smile.
“You were really good.” Misaki said with her own smile.
Accelerator looked away. “I just don’t like people who hurt others.” He said.
In the end, the group got their meals for free and got a thanks form the manager. The group left quickly when they heard that a news crew was on their way to report on the incident.
The group made their way to the dorms and stopped at the entrance.
Accelerator looked down. “So, have you guys already filled out you’re transfer forms…?”
The rest of the group looked down as well.
“Yeah.” Mikoto said. “I really wish I could keep going to Nagatenjouki… I wish they weren’t closing the middle school section.”
“Yeah, we’ll be going to Tokiwadai Middle School.” Misaki said.
“I’ll be going to some other high school. I don’t even know why they’re transferring me.” Teitoku replied.
“Yeah.” Gunha said. “It’s not fair. We should choose where we go. I’ll be going to some other high school as well.”
“I wonder…” Accelerator said, getting their attention. “Is it because we’re the only level 5’s in the city?”
“That excludes numbers four and six.” Teitoku reminded them.
“Who cares about them?” Mikoto said in a depressed voice. “I don’t want to be separated from you guys.” She looked like she was on the verge of tears.
“Calm down.” Accelerator said. Today may have been your last day at Nagatenjouki, but that just means that we’ll have to have a ton of fun this weekend, right?” Accelerator was the only one staying at Nagatenjouki Academy. He figured that they wanted to separate the level 5’s for some reason. Mikoto and Misaki would be attending the same school, but that was probably just because it was the best all-girls school.
“That’s right!” Mikoto said with a smile.
“Yeah!” Misaki said cheerfully.
“Of course!” Gunha said.
“You got that right!” Teitoku said.
“Alright then.” Accelerator said. “How about we meet at the usual meeting spot?”
After they all agreed and figured out a time, they went to their dorm rooms. Accelerator’s room was right next to Teitoku’s, so they walked together. Accelerator put his hand on the door knob.
“Hey, Accelerator.” Teitoku said, stopping him.
“What is it, Teitoku?” Accelerator said, but he already had an idea. Teitoku had already realized what was going on before Accelerator brought it up. The rest of them probably still thought it was a coincidence that they were being separated.
“This isn’t a coincidence, is it?” It was more of a statement then a question, but Accelerator replied anyways.
“Probably not.” Accelerator answered.
“I have the feeling…” Teitoku said, drawing Accelerator’s eyes to him. “That the higher ups are planning something.”
“Yeah.” Accelerator said. “There’s no way that they just so happen to transfer you guys out and close the middle school section at the same time. It’s too suspicious.”
“Well… it’s not something to worry about right now, is it?”
“I guess not.” Accelerator opened his door. “Good night, Teitoku.”
“Yeah.” Teitoku said. “Good night, Accelerator.”
With that, Accelerator walked into his room. Teitoku opened his door and did the same, both closing their doors behind them.
Accelerator walked over and laid on his bed in the small dorm room. He looked up at the ceiling and said his thoughts out loud.
“What’s going on?”