The multiverse, so large, so imaginative, so…beautiful in diversity. I have traveled through universes of pure majesty and those constructed of filth. I have seen more than any human is usually granted in their lifetime. I have made friends with creatures of light and darkness. Through it all, I have been one of 20 beings that saved the multiverse from total stagnation. I am Megumi Hishikawa, Queen, Mutant Cyborg, and Kamen Rider. At the moment, I was leaving my history class at After Academy, taught by my House Head, Death herself, after learning about the 13th Tarlaxian King Emperor, Skrandepede. He wasn’t the most popular King Emperor, giving the Tarlaxians a bad rap for centuries as Monstrous Conquerors. It took at least 20 of his successors to dispel that stigma. I had arrived back at the dorm apartment Richard and I had shared on campus and headed on to our bedroom. While I DO like how fluffy the skirt for the girl’s uniform was and how it could allow me to write a paper on it, it DOES get a little heavy after a while. I had changed into a loose skirt and a shirt that exposed my midriff and flopped onto the couch, idly flicking on the t.v. to see my boyfriend and future husband, Sir Richard Saunders, doing his job as a news reporter on MNN, Multiverse News Network.
“…thus ending the strike at the Enchanter’s union peacefully,” he had just finished. “In recent Mad Scientist News, the search for the missing Dr. Linksano has finally yielded results. He has been located on Earth in universe 1-N-T-3-R-N-3-T-R-3-V-1-3-W-3-R, far from his native universe. Dr. Linksano is a version of his current home’s Dr. Insano, a mad scientist that has, on numerous occasions, tormented or killed The Spoony One, or Spoony for short. Unlike Dr. Insano, Dr. Linksano has retired from the evil community and now works for that universe’s champion, Linkara, an internet comic book reviewer, as his scientific advisor aboard Linkara’s spaceship, Comicron One. The ship was once under the command of Lord Vyce, Linkara’s arch nemesis and well-know conqueror. After being bribed with the holo-deck onboard the ship, to which Linkara admits a threat near the end of his offer to join, Dr. Linksano retired from being evil and now works to help Linkara defend his universe. Linkara, a current contestant of the Temlins’ 1,049th Contest of Champions, has been labeled as a Champion after defeating Lord Vyce four times over now, thus allowing him to be invited and accepted into the Contest of Champions. In related news, Pilo has won against…” I switched the t.v. off as Richard went into the Contest of Champions. I never really got into it, not after Ace Corgi: Attorney at Paw lost to Jenny Everywhere. I stretched on the couch, letting my eyes shut. It was naptime. A little later, the phone rang, waking me up. I stretched, then headed to the phone, picking it up.
“Moshi moshi,” (Japanese “hello” over the phone) I mumbled as I held it to my ear.
“G’day, Megumi. Did I wake you?” asked an Australian man’s voice.
“A bit, Joshua, yeah,” I replied, recognizing the voice. “Enjoyed your date with Emily?”
“She was over the moon when she set foot on Sodor,” answered Joshua Williams. “How about you and Richard?”
“We’re doing all right,” I replied. “He helped me buy the F.N.S’ private universe and I helped him buy his car.”
“That’s nice,” commented Joshua. “Anything romantic?”
“A little hanami and a baseball game,” I answered.
“Aces,” cheered Joshua. “Now, about Shocker Rift…”
“Did you find them?!” I asked, whatever sleepiness I had being banished.
“I was gonna ask you that,” replied Joshua. My mood went down as I sighed.
“Hiro only attacked our home ONCE!” I groaned. “With an organization that big, you’d think we’d find him by now!”
“Livia and Mikhail thought at least the Joker would attack the universe they were searching, given the craziness that accompanies it,” sighed Joshua.
“What universe was that?” I asked.
“M-U-P-P-3-T-5,” answered Joshua.
“Whereabouts were they?” I pressed.
“The main entertainment venue, the local theater,” clarified Joshua.
“That venue’s chaos is kind of tame, compared to the Joker’s brand of chaos,” I figured. “What seats did they have?”
“They didn’t have seats,” corrected Joshua.
“I thought you said they were at the theater?” I quizzed.
“I did,” replied Joshua. “Their acts almost brought the house down. Statler and Waldorf tried to finish the job from their box.”
“They were onstage?!” I realized.
“The Muppets were doing a Little Mermaid theme for their show,” explained Joshua. “Mikhail sang Under the Sea, Livia did Part of Your World, and they both did a duet of Kiss the Girl. Livia tried out her new mer-form for the show.”
“Lucky girl!” I cheered. I then went back to business. “So, you and Emily didn’t see anyone from Shocker Rift on Sodor?”
“Sorry,” replied Joshua. “The only thing I saw was a Dalek cosplayer as there was a convention at Knapford, near its harbor. Gordon wasn’t too thrilled. I believe his exact words were ‘Driver, get me out of here and away from that ridiculous thing!’ Gordon’s not the biggest Doctor Who fan, I’ve noticed.”
“I suppose not everyone in Great Britain’s a fan,” I chuckled. “Much like how not everyone in Japan is a Kamen Rider fan.”
“In any case, sorry we couldn’t find Shocker Rift,” sighed Joshua.
“It’s all right,” I replied. “See you tomorrow.”
“Cheers,” bid Joshua. I hung up and idly went to the bedroom. I pulled out a drawer that held a pair of Vortex Drivers. I pulled mine out and grabbed the i.d tag that sat near it. I went back to the living room and held the Vortex Driver to my waist as it made the belt strap and fastened itself around my waist.
“Vortex Driver!” it announced. I then made a fist with my right hand, crossed it over my front, and held my left hand to my hip.
“Henshin!” I called. I then inserted the i.d tag into the belt and the new wardrobe, a blue cylinder that attached my armor pieces and external clothing as my undersuit formed, put my suit on and disappeared in a cloud of blue smoke that I waved off with one hand in one sweep. “Kamen Rider Royal!” I announced to no one. “Evil will ultimately bow to me!” …No one responded as no one else was there. I sighed, then let off a scream of frustration, not hearing the door open. Richard had come in with the groceries.
“Er…did I come in at a bad time?” he asked.
“Two years!” I hissed.
“…Pardon?” asked Richard as he set the groceries on the counter.
“Two years,” I continued, “since Hiro attacked our home universe! Only once! Two years and not a single peep from one of his Combatmen, one of the Daleks under his command, or from one of his newly-christened ‘Hell Generals’! Two years since we were accepted at After Academy and we’re still in our dorms!”
“We all agreed,” countered Richard as he started putting the groceries away, “that living on campus would increase our chances of getting educated and help us find Hiro better.”
“Yes,” I replied, “but I thought he’d do something by now! Not just sit wherever he is while we go to class, then our, admittedly well-paying, part time jobs, then return to our dorms to just do nothing except the occasional date!”
“You were the one,” reminded Richard, “who told us that patience would be a virtue.”
“Yes! A virtue for you!” I argued. “Not me! I hate patience! Patience is for wimps!”
“Need I remind you,” remarked Richard, “that one of our guest speakers, the late Mr. Rory Williams, waited 2000 years for his wife before they married?! Besides, are you telling me you’re exempt from patience?!” I groaned in frustration.
“I simply can’t live like this!” I sighed. “I can’t! I need to be busy!”
“Then go be busy!” snapped Richard. “I’ll watch for any Shocker Rift activity!”
“…All right, good luck!” I cheered as I barreled out the door and out of the dorm complex. I had summoned my mechanical horse and converted it to bike mode, speeding down the street on patrol for any wrong-doing. Just then, my radio tuned into a police call.
“All units, converge on the Beyond Graves Bank!” urged the dispatcher. “An armed robbery is in progress and it looks like the robber originated from the Kamen Rider Universe. Kamen Rider Build could use some assistance!”
“Armed robbery?!” I cheered. “Away I go!” I sped off to After Academy’s bank, the Beyond Graves Bank. When I arrived, Build and the police were at the entrance, leveling their weapons at the door. “What’s the situation?” I asked when they saw me.
“A new Smash was created,” explained Build. “It’s able to go to any place within a 2 block radius from itself about a few seconds into the future. Because of that, it’s called the Chronos Smash.”
“So it’s a time-based Smash,” I simplified.
“Yep,” replied Build. Another Kamen Rider then approached us. He was from the current series, Kamen Rider Zi-O. He wore white armor with what looked like a black and green-trimmed watch strap going down his front. His helmet had a smartwatch appearance and his eyes looked like the katakana for “Rider” (ライダー). His antennae were a pair of clock hands and he had shoulder pads and a green gauntlet on each arm held by watch straps.
“Woz, right?” I asked. The new Rider nodded. “Might I ask why you’re here and not on Zi-O’s heels?”
“Oh, but I am,” replied Kamen Rider Woz. “Who do you think is the Chronos Smash?”
“It’s Sougo Tokiwa?!” yelped Build. “How did he…?!”
“That’s unknown to me,” replied Woz. “What’s important is that we save my King.”
“Right then, off we go!” I declared. As we charged, the Chronos Smash came out of the bank. It was green, had clock hands for arms, and a watch for a face. The Smash was swinging its arms wildly and causing a lot of damage. As we tried to hit it, it vanished, then appeared behind us a few seconds later. I kicked, but the same result happened.
“Brute force isn’t working!” observed Build. Just then, the Smash spoke.
“Help…me!” it strained.
“What, help you rob a bank?” snarked Build.
“That’s not the Smash talking! That’s Sougo!” I realized. “He’s trying to gain control!”
“A Sisyphean effort, I can promise you that!” called a voice. A new Smash then entered the area. It looked like a guy in a brown coat and floppy hat.
“Who are you?!” I demanded. The new Smash laughed like a mad scientist.
“I thought, in Japan,” he cackled, “it was rude to ask questions without introducing yourself! In any case, I’m the Wander Smash!”
“Well, you’re gonna be wandering to the nearest hospital if you’re behind this!” I hissed.
“Chronos Smash, get rid of them already!” ordered the Wander Smash. The Chronos Smash attacked us through no will of his own. He was trying not to hurt us.
“The Wander Smash seems to be the source,” I figured aloud as said Smash took the sacks of cash. I charged at the Wander Smash and decked the back of his head. The Chronos Smash briefly stopped himself, then went back to his assault. “Theory confirmed!” I chuckled. The Wander Smash then recovered from the blow.
“Whatever happened to striking your enemy when he’s facing you?!” he protested.
“This coming from a petty crook,” I argued.
“PETTY CROOK?!” roared the Wander Smash. “I am no mere crook! I am the greatest scientist in all the multiverse! I have conquered time, hypertime, and the worst comic, Warrior! I am…”
“Dr. Insano!” I realized, remembering a few history lessons from Death and a few scoffs about him from Pestilence. “So, decided to use the methods of Evol to turn yourself into a Smash?”
“Excellent guess!” cheered the Wander Smash. “And, with Sougo Tokiwa under my command as the Chronos Smash, I will rule the world!”
“You can try!” I taunted. “I’m gonna desmashify you!”
“Er…desmashify?” quizzed the Wander Smash. “I don’t think that’s a word.” I stopped talking and started hitting. The Wander Smash was keeping me at bay with a staff. I managed to knock it away while switching my i.d tag out for Build’s. I selected his default form.
“Build RabbitTank Steel!” announced the Vortex Driver. The wardrobe came back and attached Build related armor onto me and changed my left eye to a blue color and my right eye red.
“HAGANE NO MOONSAULT!” called the Build Driver’s voice. “RABBITTANK! YEAH!” I went onto a harder offensive and kept up the assault. The Wander Smash was trying to keep his defense up but I found a way around it. I kicked the staff he had been using as a weapon away from him and caused him to lose balance by tripping him up. Once he tried to pick himself up, I spun the wheel, making the Vortex Driver gather energy.
“Final Attack!” announced the Vortex Driver.
“Rider Royal RabbitTank Kick!” I ordered. The Vortex Driver directed the energy towards my foot as an energy graph grabbed the Wander Smash.
“READY, GO!” shouted the Build Driver’s voice from the Vortex Driver as I jumped. As I travelled down the line, the Driver continued. “VORTEX FINISH! YEAH!” My foot connected and the Smash exploded. As I landed, the Smash fell on the ground in green fire, which Build has called the perfect opportunity to get its essence. The new Vortex Drivers have a small bag of holding on each hip, so I could put whatever I wanted into them. I pulled out an empty Fullbottle and pointed it at the moaning Wander Smash, taking its essence and sucking it into the bottle. Once I got it all, I closed the cap as a black web appeared on it. The Smash’s real form of Dr. Insano was a little groggy. He had black hypno-goggles on his face and a white lab coat with “Dr. Insano” on it. He had a stethoscope hanging around his neck and wore gloves, boots, and some sort of harness with a gun on each shoulder. He got up as the Chronos Smash managed to get Woz and Build to stop hitting him.
“Guys, I’m all right!” he said.
“Waga Maō!” (My Demon King!) cheered Woz.
“Sougo! You’re okay!” called Build.
“Not quite,” countered the Chronos Smash. “I’m still a Smash. Is there any way you could take the Smash essence away without kicking me?”
“Okay, THAT’S gonna be tough,” remarked Build. “Maybe sonic vibrations can move the molecules binding themselves to your human form, but it’s never been tested before.” I looked at Insano, checking to see if he was still concentrating on his physical form, which he was, then turned to the three men.
“I think I can help in that regard,” I called. I swapped out the Build i.d tag for the Doctor one and chose her current incarnation.
“13th Doctor Steel!” announced my belt. As the armor attached itself, my blade gained a new function.
“96 decibels SHOULD do it,” I mused as I set the new function. I pressed a button on the blade and the sound of the sonic screwdriver came through the air as I pointed the sword at the Smash. He started vibrating, then became a little misty as Build pulled out an empty Fullbottle, taking the essence. The Smash then reverted back into a young Japanese man, looking like he just got out of high school! This was Sougo Tokiwa. I switched off the sword and Build closed the cap while I handed him the bottle of the Wander Smash’s essence. “You may get a Best Match with those, given that Insano was controlling Sougo here,” I guessed. We then heard insane laughter as Insano picked himself up.
“You fools!” he giggled. “I’m NOT without a back-up plan!” Sougo rolled his eyes as he pulled out a device. It was white with a slot on each side and a screen in the middle. There was a button on top as well. Sougo set the device to his waist and it formed a belt strap.
“Ziku Driver!” it announced. The screen showed the words “Ziku Driver” as they scrolled from Sougo’s left to his right. He then took out a watch which had the year 2018 on the bottom. He turned the face to make a Kamen Rider’s face. The watch’s face had a clock theme as the hands were the antennae and, like Woz, had the katakana for “Rider” instead of eyes. Sougo then pressed the button on top and the watch beeped before speaking.
“Zi-O!” it called. Sougo then inserted the watch into the Ziku Driver’s right hand slot and pressed the button on top of the Driver to make it tilt towards his right. He then let his right hand point towards the ground while his left arm went across his chest as the hand pointed to the sky. A giant analog clock spun its hands behind him.
“Henshin!” he announced. He then spun the Ziku Driver until it arrived back in its original position. The clock’s hands then stopped at 12:00. The Ziku Driver then rang a bell.
“Rider Time!” it called. It then sang “Kamen Rider Zi-O!” His suit formed silver chest armor and a black undersuit with pink gauntlets and greyish-blue boots. The front looked like a watchband went through the head, looking exactly like the face on the watch.
“Iwae!” (Rejoice!) called Woz as he opened a book. “Zen Rider no chikara o uketsugi, jikū o koe kako to mirai o shiroshimesu toki no ōja. Sono na mo Kamen Rider Zi-O!” (The one to inherit all Rider powers, the time king who will rule over the past and the future. And his name is Kamen Rider Zi-O!)
“King nothing!” taunted Dr. Insano.
“Knock it off, Insano!” called Zi-O as we advanced. “We know how this is going to end! We’ll go over there, beat you up, and…!” He didn’t get far as Insano shoved him backwards into a wall, causing some of the building to crumble!
“The Hell?!” I yelped.
“Something wrong, Riders?!” giggled Insano. “You came here, prepared to fight a madman, and instead, you find a GOD!” He then devolved into laughing madly again.
“What are those things?!” I demanded.
“Power enhancing energy gloves,” explained Insano, “the guns on my harness are twin OMG-WTF 9000’s that follow my eye movements so I can shoot at what, or WHO, I see, and the boots… power enhancing rocket boots! Not my designs, really, but I made a few improvements!”
“That’s JesuOtaku’s stuff!” I protested.
“You wanna go a few rounds?!” giggled Insano as he slammed his hands together, causing a shockwave. “Come get some!” He fired from his guns, scattering us.
“We need a plan!” called Build.
“I have an idea!” I replied. “Woz! Build! Flank his sides! I’ll get his backside! Zi-O, Rider Kick on my signal!”
“Got it!” called the Riders. Build and Woz summoned their respective weapons, the Drill Crusher and the Zikan Despear. They kept his glove-based attacks at bay while I snuck around and smashed the powerpack for his harness.
“Break off!” I called. “Zi-O! Now!” Zi-O pressed the watch’s button again.
“Finish Time!” announced the Ziku Driver. He pressed the button on top and spun the driver again. “Time Break!” it called. A series of pink Japanese characters for “Kick” (キック) surrounded Insano as Zi-O leapt into the air. He flew down with his right foot outstretched while all the characters united and imprinted on his foot. His kick connected with Insano’s face, causing the gear to short out and explode. Insano picked himself up, then fell back down, moaning in pain.
After I gave my statement to the police while they arrested Dr. Insano, I was sent back to my dorm apartment and the visiting Riders went back to their own universe. Richard was just about to start dinner. “That’s better,” I sighed as I cancelled my transformation. “Nothing like a little activity to pass the time. How long was I gone?”
“About an hour,” replied Richard.
“And did Hiro do anything?” I asked.
“Nope, not a peep,” answered Richard as he chopped some carrots.
“…I can’t do it!” I wailed. I then shoved my face into the cushions of the couch and screamed, kicking my feet like a petulant child. Richard just sighed and went back to chopping veggies for his signature stir-fry.