Toaru Majutsu no Index:NT Volume4 Afterword
To those who have bought the volumes one at a time, it’s been a while. To those who bought them all at once: nice to meet you.
I’m Kamachi Kazuma.
It’s the fourth book already!! This volume didn’t use the old chapter concept of the past. This was to create an effect where the reader won’t be able to predict what will happen next or know who would die, and created a rule to reveal everything near the end. This little gimmick that requires one to think drove the entire story this time.
This time, the main theme was about the relations between micro and macro. But as the story isn’t divided into individual chapters this time, it may be difficult to comment on different episodes. Thus, this time, I’ll break the rules and describe the characters that appeared. I will then use the understanding of these characters who drove the story to conclude this story again.
A researcher working on the development of chemicals that affect the brain. I created this character by looking from the angle of what kind of skill was needed to create the #5 Five Over.
The skill itself was rather complicated, but he was the most mentally sane amongst the Kiharas that appeared here, and was someone who would easily understand people. He was in the middle-low tier of his family, and worked by looking at the people who were watching a sports ceremony and considering about those things. It would be very lucky of him if he could get any information as a Kihara.
There were lots of extreme real illusions in this story, but he was originally skilled at controlling emotions of a certain kind. For example, he could use a command like 'I don’t know why, but the door handle just feels strangely scary → I don’t want to go out’ to limit his target’s movement before killing them off with a gun or a knife. This was his fighting style.
He himself said that he felt that real illusions were made to kill time as it’s too boring to suppress the enemy early.
…In the end, he met someone with a similar ability, and was finally bound in that loop of illusions like he was facing a mirror.
She looked like…damaged goods from the Kihara family, but in fact, she was a girl who used her intelligence to rise to the top of the group. Graphs did appear around Enshuu on the monitors, and that’s the function of the smartphone hanging on her neck which could add on to the information semi-automatically.
My initial concept was to make a Kihara robot. But as I thought about it, there was no robot that could talk in the exact same manner as a human, so I made some changes to her design (though it’s like observing a world where microbes on Mars are talking to each other in Japanese…). If I couldn’t let her think like a human, I might as well set her up as a human. On first glance, it looked like humans were using some program to create this ability. But if it’s not a girl, the person using it would become like a person that was controlled by the program… In fact, there are cases where people end up in such a situation due to over-reliance on things like weight control appliances and fortune-telling sites. In the end, is it still considered a curse?
On a side note, my final impression on Kihara Enshuu is that of an extremely ordinary girl who’s able to transform glamorously with the power of the Kihara!
She has often been called an aunty, but she’s a big sister wearing pajamas… What age will the so-called 'aunt' in light novels nowadays be? This is a character who liked to play sick, full of mysteries, and also a boss character born from the Japanese tradition of transformation. I like a powerful foe that’s tough to beat and something I can use to rest my back on, so her trait was the phase adjustment to deliberately show that she couldn’t stand up. It’s this reason that Kihara Kagun would keep his guard when around her. This time, she used the power of the #2. But even without using his power, she could just use the knowledge and skills of a Kihara and modify her own body rampantly.
In the end, Kihara Byouri was basically formed from the change of phase with the anticipation of the attack from the science side. So if she was attacked by something out of science, that battle strategy which required transforming a few times and slowly becoming stronger wouldn’t work.
The ace this time. He wasn’t just limited to working on near-death experiences originally, but also about everything related to life and the soul that wasn’t supernatural. He explained them through scientific means and tried to conclude that a human’s life really existed, and that it wouldn’t change in value because of standings or sudden changes in situation (basically, this Kihara’s aim was good…just the aim). However, during his experiments, he created the skill to easily turn a human life On-Off, and realized that if he continued with his experiments, even if the value of human life never changed, it would be held at a very low baseline, and thus will be researched.
As a researcher, he undoubtedly killed the most number of people amongst the Kiharas. But the total damage he had done was 0 for he revived the dead, which made him someone with such amazing experience.
He looked…thoroughly like a kind teacher who ran off to seek revenge. But after thinking through it, this guy may have gotten the power to take revenge, but he did agree with the Radiosonde Castle and the Hawaiian Islands incidents. He helped the audience at Baggage City, but he also did take part in the action in Baggage City. He can be considered to be like the other Kiharas when it comes to achieving a good objective and destroying everything to achieve the means… In other words, this Kihara was released because he protected the children from the killer on the road, but finally couldn’t control his own actions.
…Thus, because such a thing happened, Kumokawa Maria concluded that the 'sorry' wasn’t said to her, but to others. In fact, Kumokawa Maria was one of the others. That’s because the teacher she spent so much time to find no longer existed.
We’ll be giving a cross-analysis to distinguish him from Kihara Kagun. As he had a defensive spell that completely nullifies fatal wounds, he was a problematic character who didn’t mind about other people’s personalities or habits and would interfere through small actions. Logically, if someone with ordinary emotions ended up in such a situation, the mind would collapse first. However, I avoided the above-mentioned problem by stating that his research became useful in such an attack.
He could nullify all fatal attacks, but he also had a sword spell that increases its destructive power every time he was attacked. Thus, when facing a fierce attack by the enemy, he could use a spell that has an infinite ceiling. This is different from Accelerator in that it's not the control of just one attack, but that the thing that’s worth noting is that once the power increases, he could maintain such destructive power when fighting the enemy in the future. As his name suggested, he really was an inflating bastard.
However, he wouldn’t be able to fight skillfully if his attack power wasn’t fine-tuned. Thus, he’s not used to attacking others. It’s because of this that he used his fists to fight in the beginning. This could be somewhat seen from the way Kihara Kagun wished to fight with his target on equal grounds until death.
On a side note, Kihara Ransuu and Útgarða-Loki, who were dealt with easily at the beginning, would be the natural enemies to Bersi.
The illusionist on the magic side. Like Sigyn and Marian, he was originally a magician who wasn’t supposed to take part in direct battle. As for why such people were gathered in Baggage City, I suppose everyone understood from the explanation of a certain plan in the ending of the book? In other words, Gremlin didn’t want to win. What’s important was to accurately adjust the environment in Baggage City that got involved in the battle.
To Gremlin, they had no need to take action in Baggage City, but the Anti-Academy City Science Guardians said that they wanted to replace Academy City and create a global standard for supernatural powers, and brought their weird interests into this discussion and made use of them.
The person who was defeated at the start of the battle. She originally could not only give suggestions to her allies, but also give wrong suggestions to the enemy and cause them to self-destruct. She can choose between which method to use .
Instead of magic, she’s actually more apt at analyzing the opponent’s logic and fill in the holes like an expert in debating. Her skill in making up for logic could also be used for magic, and that's how she got in to this industry (?).
She would just suggest, and then only claim responsible when it succeeds. It’s because she continued to remain so irresponsible that she wouldn’t have any hesitation to betray her allies when she has such a weak sense of camaraderie even if she didn’t end up like what happened in the volume. This was a character that should surprise the audience because she didn't get modified into a chair or table by Marian, whom we’re about to talk about.
The culprit who brought the level of bloodiness in this story to this level. A fanatic at modifying human bodies… But one can tell from the drama when she pulled out Dáinsleif that she originally didn’t specialize in modifying human parts.
It’s mentioned in the work, but deliberately modifying the enemy's human parts into terrifying shapes was a strategic choice in battle to shake the enemy’s will to fight.
Thus, she could modify everything that’s not human too. She could modify them into handsome men and pretty ladies. If she just wanted tools, she could make it out of minerals, if she wanted something to have calculation capabilities like a missile, then she would make it out of lifeforms. Anyway, it’s roughly those kinds of rules, I suppose?
…But since this is a girl who finds solace in using those kinds of tables and chairs, if she would make beautiful men and women according to her senses, it would be something very shocking I suppose.
Through the explanation of Dáinsleif in the text, lots of people will be thinking that ‘if that’s the ability of the item that came with it, what’s the actual ability of the item itself?’ But like what Stiyl said in his Side Story, if they could randomly create a powerful spiritual item, it’ll be impossible to achieve balance if they don’t control it. Try to use these words to understand. On a side note, the Dáinsleif mentioned here is different from the Gungnir mentioned somewhere else. In the original legend, it was prepared for a human king to use. Thus, there’s no need to view it as a connecting spell for gods to use gods’ weapons and link it to the holy tool Mjölnir.
Able to modify people that freely yet succumb into panic when her partner Bersi died…that’s her trait. She had an extreme personality of having a clear line between friend and foe and was somewhat insane at times. Even so, what if the final road really becomes her redemption…?
The most normal person amongst the competitors in the Natural Selector fighting tournament. A person who simply used wrestling moves. The current 1-versus-1 gimmick of the global martial arts tournament lost its luster with the psychic interference from Academy City (Esper powers were viewed in part as a form of entertainment in the Daihaseisai). She came all the way to Baggage City simply to find sponsors.
Thus, her aim wasn’t to win the Natural Selector, but to do whatever she can to shine in this tournament filled with many people with strange powers, in order to leave an impression on those rich enterprises and investors. Thus, even though the stage shifted from an official tournament to street-side fighting, and eventually turned into a war between science and magic, her attitude did not change at all.
From the way she’s concerned with the refreshing feeling that comes with destruction, perhaps she has a personality which makes her focus on show business ethics in her original profession?
Looks like a 10-year-old, but this is only because of things like the Clostridium botulinum bacteria. She’s actually a 30+ aunty. A ninja with a cheerleader outfit, a school bag, and a gardening trowel as her main weapon, her traits are a mess. This was a measure to deliberately stand out and attract the enemy’s attention… But it really brought a lot of trouble to the illustrator. Even though I call it messy, but if it's actually drawn as messy, it would be really embarrassing. However, if it was too neat, it would deviate from the intent of the text. I feel that designing her image was a difficult C+ different.
Normally, characters of this kind would be of a low level (expendable). Genins should be in charge of protecting the Jounin of the higher levels (that’s why the management could survive and built on such accomplishments to achieve their standings). However, Oumi Shuri herself overturned such a theory. She didn’t get abandoned, but also made an amazing feat of surviving.
Naturally put, she still focused on protecting her allies and subordinates, but as the forces that first appeared were eliminated, she was running around berserk and far from her original thought process… The Kouga themselves secretly had people in Academy City, but they had a vastly different target from the ones here. From this, we can tell that the Kouga were largely divided.
Fresh blood, illusions, human modifications, a ninja that tried to act young, a biological weapon, a shape shifting boss, the absolute cold of -20 degrees Celsius… In such a rampant hell, she was the ever important oasis. The panties-servicing younger Kumokawa sister. She’s armed with a fighting style of Capoeira, breakdance, and pole dance. But even though she gave such an impression, there wasn’t much mention in the text. Most likely, it’s because she was worried that she would be exposed. The few illustrations of her caused a change in the hell in this volume!...But this girl looked like she was suffering, which was the jumping feeling or the moving weight or whatsoever.
Her ability’s called Violence Doughnut, an ability to increase the centrifugal force in her by 0.5 to 2 times, and she’s a Level 2. Centrifugal force, one of the basics when fighting, increases destructiveness, but her bones and muscles are as only tough as a human's, so her trait was that her bones will snap if she punched really hard.
She was often saying some amazing things, but Kumokawa Maria wasn’t really active. However, that’s likely a characteristic she shares with her older sister Seria. From the point mentioned in New Testament 2, that she couldn’t do anything to prevent the 20,000 clones from dying even after knowing about it, one can understand the standpoint of these two sisters.
As everyone knows, he’s safe as he’s the protagonist. However, one of the main themes this time was to break the rule that with Kamijou around, all his allies will be saved. Thus, the key term, Kamijou Touma, was used for all sorts of things. Even in this story, there were lots of emphasis on the term itself.
However, I beilieve the boy’s existence that appeared at the end had an obvious difference to the Kamijou Touma from before. The fact that the 'ordinary chapter format' only making a reappearance there was because of the meta reasoning that the rule of the icy world that controlled this place was replaced by something else.
…Although there is actually more shocking 'damage' lying in wait for him further down the road.
As for the character who appeared as a Boss-level opponent and caused the damage, I’ll deliberately abstain from commenting. That’s a twist which’s for the benefit of the development of the series and for those important characters to continue to appear.
I’d like to express my thanks to my illustrator, Haimura-san, and my editor Miki-san. After I came up with the gimmick, Haimura-san probably spent a lot of thinking time to choose which illustrations to use for which scenes. The designation of the RPG-style shape shifting boss-type which would have meaninglessly increased the illustrating difficulty would have him yelling "NO!". I’ll have to really thank him this time.
Also, I’d like to express my thanks to the readers. As I selfishly used my thoughts to break out of the safety zone and nearly caused the pillar of support sustaining the story to collapse, I faced this problem which a series would have when it runs on for too long but isn’t going to be resolved easily. I’ll give my heartfelt thanks to everyone for giving me the courage to tackle this problem.
And so, this volume ends with this page.
It is time to close the pages for now while praying that the pages of the next book will be opened.
And I lay my pen down for now.
A Valkyrie appeared, but I’ll explain it in this volume, so please relax.