Black Knight Kun Volume 1 Chapter 7

Chapter Seven: The True Nature of Power, the Return of the Monster

Measuring Katsumi’s abilities.

It involved having him transform with the suit and fight multiple virtual enemies, recording his vitals and ability values as data.

The place for it was a large training area built underground at the Justice Crusaders headquarters that we also use for self training, and he was standing there.

“Whoa, this must have cost a crazy amount… We’re underground right? It feels like I time slipped into a futuristic world…”

The training area walls can change the scenery according to settings.

The scene now making Katsumi act restless like a puppy brought in for vaccinations, was a bare sandy place like an old mine site without any plants.

“Black Knight’s inner workings are a black box to us.”

We were in a room overlooking the training area from above.

In this spacious area beside us were about ten staff members, and us three Justice Crusaders members.

And the man who had been eagerly anticipating these measurements more than anyone, our commander, scientist, and president kanazaki Reima, opened his mouth while looking down over the training area.

“Your suits have a system to remotely monitor the wearer’s vitals, energy output, and condition. But the Proto Suit… No, Justice Crusaders Prototype Zero’s suit doesn’t have that.”

“Why not?”

“Because I forgot to install it.”

Everyone’s gazes gather on the president.

Even with exasperated looks from the staff who always support us rather than us, his confident expression doesn’t falter.

“With that device I could check even your three sizes, wait, joking. So don’t point the shock gun at people. You know right? At max output it’s incredibly painful… Oh, Yellow? That kyuiiiiin sound just now was that right? Max output?”

“””…………”””

Since nonsense like this is an everyday occurrence, while exasperated we put away the self defense weapon given to us, the ‘Shock Gun’.

“Hmph, don’t worry. I don’t have even a shred of interest in you as the opposite sex.”

“Isn’t there a better way you could say that?”

“Don’t lump me together with humans.”

“What’s with that appeal of not being human that comes out from time to time…?”

Does he mean not to lump him in with ordinary humans?

There’s no way he’s actually declaring himself non-human.

“Now then, the foolish brats have interfered but… Katsumi, are you ready?”

“Yeah, I’m ready, Reima.”

“””Ha?”””

Did Katsumi just call this perverted president by his first name despite us being here?

“I’m not worried but don’t try to escape. …What’s with those unpleasant looks, we’ll talk later.”

Waving us away annoyingly, the president speaks into the mic to him.

“I repaired your suit while measuring it but installed a program to forcefully cancel your transformation if you show signs of trying to escape. If you make any movements to escape, we can immediately activate it here.”

“Okay, got it.”

“Then transform on my signal please.”

Taking the mic from his mouth, he turns to us who are dumbfounded.

“What is it? Spit it out so we can start the measurements already.”

“Why are you being called by your first name…!?”

“Did you buy his permission…?”

“Brainwashing…?”

“Now I see how you’re looking at me.”

Katsumi called the president by his first name.

It’s not a way to address your elders, but for him who refuses to call even us by first name no matter how much we ask, this is an extraordinarily irregular situation.

“Geez, as expected of the useless Justice Loveless Rangers. It’s sad to watch. I know your youth belongs to the monsters and Black Knight but…”

“Part of why that’s the case is your fault ya know!!”

He has a point, he has a point, but what is this unsatisfied feeling?

“Movies.”

“Huh?”

“I prepared a list of things he wanted and gave him movies.”

I can’t grasp my thoughts at the unexpected talk.

Huh, why does watching movies let you call each other casually? Did you have him watch romantic comedies?

“I happen to like movies too. In the course of personally handing them to him, well, naturally we got somewhat close. Basically during the day he does exercise, studying, and messing with the PC a little bit. I thought it would be good for him mentally to have other times occupied too, so I started giving him things like movies.”

“””…………”””

“And I interact with him as a researcher affiliated with the organization so he doesn’t know I’m the one who created the suits.”

Th-this president…!

He understands if Katsumi knew he made the suits, they wouldn’t be able to interact normally…!

“The company staff have also given him various gifts with good intentions. I’ve kept it within common sense of course. …That’s enough right? I want to start the measurements already.”

Glancing at the mic, seeing we aren’t saying anything, he takes it.

Perhaps because he sees us as rivals, there are difficulties getting close…

Gugu, I absolutely won’t give up…!

“Sorry for the wait. Go ahead and transform.”

“Got it.”

We look at his figure displayed on the monitor.

He holds up the black watch-like bracelet on his arm, the ‘Proto Morpher’, in front of his chest and presses the side button three times in succession.

Along with the Morpher activating, a special field expands around him, the suit’s particles cover him from the neck down, and the mask that covers his entire head is equipped.

Our transformation ends there but his isn’t over yet.

From there, armor-like dull colored plates and chest armor are equipped onto him as if adding on.

“CHANGE PROTO TYPE ZERO…”

With the noisy simple voice, he completes his transformation, waving at us while testing his condition.

It was my first time seeing Katsumi transform but while the initial transformation process is the same, what comes after is completely different.

Our transformations finish in one sequence but his seems to have an extra step.

“We’re measuring his suit, what do you think?”

The president calls out to one of the staff.

“Energy output, vitals, all other values are stable. But considering the Proto Suit data, the numbers are abnormal.”

“I see, so the aptitude values themselves are outstanding huh. The Proto Suit’s performance is… Hmm, it’s drawing out the capabilities I assumed were its original specs, no, more than that!?”

Staring fixedly at the monitor, the president takes a deep breath as if to calm himself.

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“Stay calm…leave the analysis for later…. Virtual enemies, level max.”

“Understood. Virtual enemy level 10. …How many?”

“Start with ten.”

As the staff inputs commands at the console, humanoid robots appear before Katsumi.

These beat us up pretty badly at first but now we can defeat them easily.

While I watch the screen with distant eyes, the president takes the mic.

“Katsumi, try facing them as practice. Level max, it might not be enough for you but please.”

Nodding lightly at us, he jumps lightly facing the virtual enemies.

As if warming up, he jumps rhythmically then powerfully stomps the ground and disappears from the spot in an instant.

“Wha!?”

“What happened!?”

A female staff member raises a startled voice.

At the same time we’re surprised, the speaker sounds something breaking.

Looking, the scene of him swinging his leg and bisecting multiple virtual enemies jumps into view.

“Output exceeded limits instantaneously! No, it’s going back…? Ah, it exceeded the limits again…”

I compare his screen fighting with the staff’s screen.

Each time he attacks the enemies the gauge spikes then returns.

Honestly I don’t understand what this screen is measuring but I can tell something abnormal is happening.

“…Send out more enemies.”

“Ye-yes?”

“Send them out!”

At the president’s excited, shaking voice, they nod and more virtual enemies appear.

Having defeated all the initial ten, seeing the newly appeared enemies, he tilts his head then dives in with enough force to make the ground explode, landing on the shoulder of the robot at the very front as if kicking a soccer ball, smashing its head apart.

With a light bang! the robot loses its head.

Not even glancing at their broken comrade, the surrounding robots take aim and fire paintballs.

Katsumi smoothly moves from that spot, extending his fist to pierce through the robot’s chest.

Using it as a shield, he proceeds to destroy the virtual enemies at an outrageous speed with fists and kicks.

“The robots are getting crushed like snacks…”

“He’s strong as expected, Katsumi.”

“That would have came flying at us as enemies.”

While we have that reaction being somewhat used to the sight, the president and staff are all continuously moving their hands busily.

“The Proto Suit isn’t a defective model, it simply hadn’t met someone who could draw out its true power…? The output is either zero or max, no, that’s wrong. Is it tearing through the limit values from zero and forcibly drawing out power beyond that? The Proto Suit has the highest durability and heat resistance since it’s an experimental model. With the suit’s self repair feature it shouldn’t break almost at all but…even so that kind of output is… So that’s the aptitude!! But wait, no matter how much it exceeds the limits an alert should definitely pop up…I must have installed that function in the prototypes as well.”

“U-um, president…?”

The president muttering up a storm nearby.

When I hesitantly call out, he directs a sharp gaze.

“Ngyasharap! My brain is spinning at full power analyzing this!!”

He seems really flustered.

After intently watching Katsumi obliterate the virtual enemies at full force, the president suddenly makes a realization, dropping the hand on his chin limply.

“Oh, I see…that’s how it was. It’s too unlikely for me to have considered but…because he doesn’t fear his own death, he can step forward with his full power…”

“…Huh?”

Doesn’t fear his own death…?

“No, forget that. I misspoke.”

It’s not like I don’t have an inkling he’s somehow indifferent about his life.

When we captured him, he tried to self-destruct.

Normally you wouldn’t take action like that if you feared your own death.

“Most likely from the beginning.”

“Hm?”

“He wasn’t wearing the Proto Suit. The Proto Suit was being worn by him. Just as a servant can’t harm their master…he was the Proto Suit’s perfect match. That’s why he can handle its functions at full spec…”

“In other words, what does that mean?”

Then the president who had been excited nearby turns this way, raising his gripped fists as if appealing.

“The suit I should have made for Katsumi wasn’t Justice Crusader Number 4 but Proto Zero Mark II!”

“I don’t understand what you mean!”

“Why don’t you get it, Earthling!!”

I’ve been told something extremely unreasonable.

Instead of suits like ours he’s saying it would have been better to improve his original suit?

As I’m wondering that in puzzlement, further irregularity occurs in the nearby frenzied president.

“Uiii, uehehehe!! I’ve solved you, Black Kniiight! No, Katsukuuun!! You’re my hope!! The supreme wearer!!”

“Uwah, he’s tripping…”

“A grown man making an ecstatic face is seriously hard to watch…”

I’m exasperated at the president making weird laughter.

While it also means he cherishes the suits that much, it’s still hard including that.

“Uu, th-thank you. For using the Proto Suit I made…”

“Now he’s crying…”

“This old man is way too scary…”

“Too emotionally unstable…”

I’m kind of feeling ruined…

But Katsumi right now seems somewhat lively.

Is it because he can move his body all-out?

“It’d be good if he could get permission to go out, but that’s still impossible huh.”

Even though his identity was partially revealed when his mask broke in the final battle, since you can’t see his mouth or nose he shouldn’t risk being found out.

An ear-piercing alarm echoes from the ceiling along with our Justice Changers vibrating.

“Monster alert issued!! Monster alert issued!! Justice Crusaders prepare for dispatch!!”

“””!?”””

Surprised, when I look at the president he also has a startled expression.

“Oi oi, of all times it comes now! Ruining the mood completely!! Utterly inconsiderate monster!!”

“President! Could Omega have revived!?”

“No, it’s different. This is…”

Taking out a terminal from his pocket, operating it and grasping the situation, he presses his forehead exasperatedly.

“I told you about it right? The incident where I temporarily approached the then still unidentified existence, Black Knight, for cooperation a year and a half ago.”

“Oh, that super secret…”

“Yeah, it’s awakened. That pain with ‘invincibility’ as long as it’s on land.”

The image with Katsumi switches to another one.

Video of some sea somewhere.

At the center of the sea surface, large amounts of steam erupts and inside it you can see a red light emitting humanoid figure of sorts standing on the water surface.

“The magma monster Katsumi threw into the Pacific has regained its power and floated up!!”

A monster appearance after several months.

The sensation of our everyday, peaceful life being painted over with crisis.

While enduring that sensation I hadn’t felt in a while, we reaffirm our will to fight.





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