After a quick banter, Misaka Mikoto and Shokuhou Misaki gather their thoughts about the aftermath of the 48 Hours to Restore Order. Although most of the students of Tokiwadai were unhurt by the incident, it caused disillusionment among some students about their reasons for participating in the Power Curriculum Program and the fear associated with discovering the repercussions of having an esper ability. Then, Mikoto decides to open a completely different topic, this time involving the Anti-Art Attachment.
To Touma's confusion, Maika manages to regain her consciousness after the mysterious attack against her. But, as they try to assess the nature of the attack made against Maika, a mysterious being appeared and attempted to attack them. Touma instinctively attacks using Imagine Breaker, only to find himself in an "attack" that lacked the associating threat. Tsuchimikado Motoharu soon identifies the concept of karma in the actions of the mysterious being—based on karmic retribution, any action is returned by an appropriate reaction. In the case of Touma's attack, it triggered more of the "karmic beasts" appearing before Touma and the others. With even Fran's magic malfunctioning before the karmic beasts, Motoharu decides to hijack a crane truck that Touma and the others use to escape. However, the beasts continued to phase in and out of existence in an attempt to pursue them. Motoharu then warns them that Aleister is the type of person that revels in leading results in a certain direction as they drive to School District 7.
Using a surface opening, Motoharu and the group drive into the ruins of Kihara Yuiitsu's base under the Windowless Building, and used the crane along with a boost from Motoharu's onmyoudou to climb further into the building. As a result of this, Motoharu suffers from the side effects of using magic as an esper. Regardless, he pushes the group to continue moving.
Misaki brings Mikoto to a fastfood restaurant outside of the School Garden, where Mikoto starts to talk about having the cope with discovering a new power in the Anti-Art Attachment. Misaki thinks that since the side effects of the A.A.A. cannot be diagnosed by conventional medicine, the only way to deal with the A.A.A. is analyzing it herself. She already knows that Mikoto is planning to do the same thing despite resorting to asking her for advice. Despite this, she decides to play along because Touma might be involved in Mikoto's problem.
Upon reaching a massive opening inside the Windowless Building, Touma continued their ascent by taking the stairs. However, the building mysteriously continued upwards without end, and Touma is fighting the unease caused by the karmic beasts and the lack of threat in Maika's condition. Suddenly, Touma slipped and fell off the staircase and, separated from Othinus, finds himself in a "world of fog", where he witnesses reenactments of various events in the life of a certain "Edward", before finding himself at the same staircase where he "fell". Still dazed at what just happened, Touma is once more confronted with karmic beasts at the end of the staircase, with a third appearing beside the previous two. Then, one of the beasts exploded only to reveal a man wearing a green surgical gown. This man then unleashed a force that not only destroyed the two other karmic beasts, but also tore through Motoharu's barrier, splitting the force among his entire group and knocking back Touma down the stairway.
Between the LinesEdit
Criticisms against practitioners of magic by the Christian Church continued even as the traditional witch hunt was taken down due to complaints of inhumanity. Instead, it came in the form of scathing propaganda about the use of living subjects for magic. As a result, magicians adopted a rule that prohibits the use of living creatures for magical experiments.
However, this prohibition did not stop anyone from breaking the taboo. One of these people, on a trip to Africa, used the blood of three pigeons to create a magic circle for a spell designed for the user to pass from one sephira (see Kabbalah) to another. This allowed that person to gain contact with a being whose name has eight letters that begin with C.
By order of appearance:
- Misaka Mikoto
- Shokuhou Misaki
- Tsuchimikado Maika
- Kamijou Touma
- Tsuchimikado Motoharu
- Index Librorum Prohibitorum
- Karasuma Fran
- Aleister Crowley
- Imagine Breaker - Kamijou Touma
- Astrology-style magic - Karasuma Fran
- Onmyoudou - Tsuchimikado Motoharu
- Unnamed type of magic - Aleister Crowley
- Misaki: "…It’s all perfectly normal, but it’s a frightening normal. Their ability allowed them to easily survive during the scorching heat wave and the ferocious Elements, but now that they know they’re bringing that same ability into their peaceful everyday lives, they can’t help but feel afraid."