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MEMBER's Baba Yoshio finds himself between a rock and a hard place. His emergency shelter, Academy City's "Summer Resort" suddenly undergoes an emergency shutdown, closing in himself several hundred meters underground in District 22. What's worse is that water is rushing in to make his escape impossible, and with the only available operative of MEMBER now abandoning him, he eventually descends into hysteria.
In the outer walls of District 11, BLOCK's Teshio Megumi and Saku Tatsuhiko are waiting for their 5000 mercenaries to sneak themselves into Academy City. Meanwhile, Unabara Mitsuki continues to blend in as BLOCK's Yamate, and he listens to their plan, which involves exploiting the disabled security and the rotations done by the city's security robots to sneak in the mercenaries they need to push through.
Soon, the "security gap" they need begins, and while BLOCK is busy watching over the infiltration procedure, Unabara is busy thinking what is the most effective target for his Spear of Tlahuizcalpantecuhtli. He decides to aim for a parking garage and use the spear to create a hole in the ground to hide into. With his move, his cover is now compromised, and while he returns to the identity of Unabara Mitsuki, the chaos he sparked spirals out of control when Academy City's HsAFH-11 "Six Wings" are deployed.
While the AI-controlled Six Wings destroys the mercenaries that were sneaking into Academy City, Unabara is rescued by Accelerator, who discovers the commotion after connecting the dots of events that are going on.
Soon, Unabara and Accelerator meet up with fellow GROUP operatives Tsuchimikado Motoharu and Musujime Awaki on the headquarters of BLOCK. After Unabara is briefed about what he had missed, they discover that the situation is not yet finished. In fact, BLOCK is still on the move, with a certain facility in District 10 as their target.
In fact, BLOCK is aiming to take Awaki's comrades and use them to be able to negotiate with her. There, she discovers that her job as Aleister's "guide", and they needed her teleportation ability to sneak in a install a special kind of bomb that would destroy the Windowless Building... and possibly end the war before it begins.
The job suddenly becomes Awaki's personal business, and GROUP decides to join along without any complaints. Their next target is District 10, and they would still face about 100 of BLOCK's mercenaries.
GROUP soon travel to District 10, and while on their way, Tsuchimikado tries to obtain a floor plan of their target facility by hacking. They think that Awaki's comrades might be hidden from plain sight, and they need to expect enemy fire since BLOCK has the same authority as GROUP and their intervention is expected.
Also, they are expected to lose their powers in the mission, since the entire facility is equipped with AIM Jammers, devices that render espers' powers severely weakened if not unusable.
They soon reach the target, but they instantly discover that there's no noise that they expected from mercenaries from BLOCK. GROUP discovers that they are all killed in various ways — more specifically, killed by their own weapons — and the culprit is an operative from MEMBER. And Unabara discovers that the culprit is closer to him that he had thought; the girl is none other than Xochitl, a girl who is on a personal mission to kill him — whose real name is Etzali — for betraying the organization where they belonged in the past.
The fight between Etzali and Xochitl is inevitable, and while BLOCK's remaining mercenaries push on, the other members of GROUP decide to pursue them and leave the personal battle to the two.
Tsuchimikado and Awaki rush to the hidden cells of the facility, but BLOCK's Saku Tatsuhiko and Teshio Megumi are already there, preparing a batch of C4 and starting a negotiation for the safety of the ones inside the cells. However, Teshio thinks that blowing up the hostages will not help them in their target. Although Saku is stubborn to let go of his own plan, a powerful punch from Teshio forces him to reconsider. Then, she asks Awaki once again involving her cooperation to their plans to kill Aleister.
Meanwhile, Etzali experiences the effects of Xochitl's magic, which involves borrowing the destructive power of one's weapons and using it for that person to commit suicide. It was the same spell she used to take out BLOCK's mercenaries without even holding a weapon herself, and he was shocked to see such a spell from her arsenal.
Etzali only knew about Xochitl's magic as someone who could retrieve the will from a dead person, and she was never involved in destructive magic. This caused him to question the decisions of the organization he left a long time ago. However, Xochitl was not ready to answer questions, and calls forth a macuahuitl to attack Etzali with.
Xochitl manages to hurt Etzali with it, but as a person who is not used to dangerous weapons, she is not able to slice through Etzali. After a retaliatory kick to the gut, Etzali decides to leave behind Xochitl.
Although a one-versus-two fight, Teshio Megumi still manages to fend off Tsuchimikado and Awaki's attacks using her own style of fighting. The two espers can barely keep up with her physical strength. However, Awaki manages to stall Teshio by asking her about her intentions of confronting Aleister. Teshio's main motive was to ask Aleister about the "truth", a seemingly cliched motive that reminds Awaki of a similar wish she had in the past, and her decision to abandon it altogether.
In an unexpected move, Awaki takes out the device keeping her mentally stable when using her powers and decides to fight Teshio even with the anti-esper devices still activated. She fights Teshio in spite of the injuries she got from misalinged teleports, but she was successful in knocking out Teshio,
Outside, Etzali is shocked to discover Xochitl's condition; her body is slowly crumbling like ash, and he discovers from Xochitl herself that she has been in contact with a Grimoire... in fact, parts of her body were turned into a powdery substance which she controls through magic to perform her ability — it was the essence of her magic. Etzali wanted to save Xochitl, and the only way to do it is to take in the grimoire into himself. It was a tough decision, but he has decided to push through.
The fight of Tsuchimikado and Awaki against BLOCK's Teshio Megumi and Saku Tatsuhiko (who was taken out by Teshio earlier) has finished, and after a warm exchange of words between her comrades, Awaki marches with Tsuchimikado and they find Accelerator and Unabara Mitsuki, both unscathed.
With their respective fights finished, they head off.
Between the LinesEdit
In the streets of Academy City, a woman contacts a certain man on the phone regarding the incidents happening in Academy City, especially the battle between the underground organizations. News of BLOCK being taken out by GROUP is heard, and the woman wonders, now with BLOCK out of commission, if SCHOOL will suffer the same fate as well.
Transmission data from UNDER_LINE:
GROUP: All members active.
ITEM: All members active.
SCHOOL: "Boy with goggles" status unknown. Remaining members active.
MEMBER: All members inactive.
BLOCK: All members inactive.
By order of appearance
- Baba Yoshio
- Etzali (as Yamate, later as Unabara Mitsuki)
- Teshio Megumi
- Saku Tatsuhiko
- Tsuchimikado Motoharu
- Musujime Awaki
- Xochitl (as Girl in Crimson Uniform)
- Redirection, Accelerator
- Appearance borrowing, Etzali and Xochitl
- Move Point, Musujime Awaki
- Calendar Stone magic, by Xochitl
- "Summer Resort", District 22, Academy City
- "Reformatory", District 10, Academy City
- The macuahuitl is a traditional Aztec weapon which is made up of pieces of obsidian lined up to resemble a saw's edge. Because of its limitations as a non-metal weapon, it can only be used by experts.