You yawn after placing your indoor shoes back into your shoe locker. Damn those opening ceremonies were boring. You would have skipped out if your folks didn’t send Nuo, your little sister, along with you to make sure you went. You scratch your head through the wild and tangled mass you call your hair and trudge towards the exit.
“H-have a n-nice d-day!” You look down and see Mrs. Chouko, your witch homeroom teacher, waving you goodbye while trembling in what you think is fear. You don’t really blame her. At close to seven feet tall, you dwarf your adult sized teachers with ease. You must seem like a giant to the child-like Chouko. Combined with your reputation of being the biggest, meanest delinquent in town, you don’t really blame her for being a little scared. You reply to her with a grunt and continue your trek to the school gates. You scan the crowd, hoping to catch a glimpse of the little hinezumi you call your sister, but she doesn’t seem to be there. You do notice a large gathering of lizardmen in front of the school gates, but you’re more concerned about your sister’s absence. She should be here by now. You hope she isn’t in any trouble… You decide to head to Nuo’s middle school to check up on her when a salamander separates herself from the lizardmen and approaches you.
“Are you the one they call the Great Lion?” You look from the salamander to the lizardmen and recognize a couple that went to middle school with you. They must have told this salamander about you. You return your gaze to the salamander and nod your head. “Excellent! My name is Shinobu and I am a warrior of justice! I have heard of your past misdeeds, and proclaim that I shall be the one to defeat you and set you upon the path of righteousness!” The lizardmen all cheer at her words and offer encouragement. You don’t have time for this. You walk up to Nobu and bend over to look her in the eye while you grab her shoulders. You give her your best ‘Don’t fuck with me’ look as you squeeze her as hard as you can.
When she winces from the pain you tell her, “Defeat me? Trust me when I tell you this Shiny. You’re a dozen decades too early to even think you’re good enough for me to pound you into the dirt.” You let go of her shoulders and the salamander collapses to the ground. You shoot a glare at the peanut gallery before heading towards the middle school. As you leave the crowd behind, you hear what’s her name start bawling. You hope for her sake that that she hasn’t pissed herself.
As you approach Nuo’s school, you notice a gathering outside of the school gates. It looks like everyone is forming a circle, so you conclude that a fight is in the process of starting. You begin to feel a bit worried and quicken your pace. Arriving at the scene, you find your worst fears have come to fruition. Nuo is standing in the middle of the circle of onlookers along with a dark elf, a minotaur and an ogre. Since she’s the size of a small child, Nuo’s opponents tower over her. At least, you hope they aren’t her opponents…
“You sure got a lot of spunk for a freshman,” the dark elf sneers.
“That’s for sure,” agrees the ogre. “You want us to teach the shrimp a lesson boss?”
“I AM NOT A SHRIMP!!!!” bellows Nuo. Well there goes any hope of this not being a fight. You sigh before approaching Nuo from behind, trying to move through the crowd as casually as you can manage.
“Ha ha, the shrimpy shrimp doesn’t like being called a shrimp,” taunts the minotaur between guffaws. “So how about it boss?”
“Heh, I’m all for…” Having managed to get behind your sister, the dark elf and her goons finally notice you. They stare at you slack jawed as you give them the meanest glare you can manage. You can practically hear the dark elf’s teach chattering as she shouts, “Getting the hell out of Dodge!” All three troublemakers turn tail and run. Nuo, shocked at the sudden development at first, gives a rather pleased chuckle.
“Kukuku. I guess they finally understand the difference in our abilities! Are you doing ok Aimi?” Nuo asks as she turns around to face one of her friends. However, her friend must be somewhere behind you, so you wind up taking up her field of vision instead. Finally realizing that you’re there, Nuo’s cute happy expression becomes and equally adorable frown. “Dage! What are you doing here?”
“Well, I couldn’t find you at the high school, so I figured I’d come here and check up on you,” you reply.
“Are you the reason Kiku and her goons ran off?” Nuo asks with an accusatorial tone. You quickly shake your head, but her frown only grows. “Dage! I told you not to do that anymore!”
“Do what?” you ask in mock curiosity.
“Scaring away my opponents! You always…” Nuo trails off as the both of you notice a unicorn middle schooler approach.
“N-nuo-chan, do you know this gentleman?” asks the timid looking unicorn.
“Oh Aimi! Yeah, this is my da- I mean my aniki,” Nuo responds while turning to face her friend and elbowing your leg.
“Oh my! I wasn’t aware you’d be so big Onii-san! My name is Aimi and I’m ever so glad that you got here in time to stop that dreadful fight.”
“Don’t worry about it,” you say with a nod.
“What do you mean Aimi? Don’t you think I could have took those losers out for you?” Nuos asks, clearly incensed at her friends comment.
“I’m sure you would have given them quite the trouncing Nuo-chan,” Aimi said in an attempt to assuage the mouse girl’s temper. “However Onii-san managed to rectify the situation without anyone getting hurt, so isn’t it for the best?” Nuo stares at Aimi for a moment before turning round and kicking you in the shins.
“Damn! You! Dage!” yelled Nuo, punctuating each word with another kick.
“Don’t worry about it Aimi,” you explain. “She just needs to get it out of her system.”
“O-ok…” mutters Aimi, clearly not convinced. She watches you and Nuo for a moment before saying, “While I would love to stay and converse some more, I unfortunately need to leave.”
“Alright. Bye,” you say as you wave goodbye.
“Ok! See! You! Tomorrow! Aimi!” Nuo says while continuing her assault on your leg.
Aimi gives the two of you one last concerned look before smiling and saying, “Thank you! See you tomorrow!” She then turns around and trots away. With Aimi gone, you look down at your sister. She’s still kicking your shins, but at a slower pace than before. You guess she must be tiring out.
“How do you expect to win a fight with such a low endurance level?” you ask. Nuo stops kicking and looks up at you, pouting.
“How am I supposed to find out if you don’t let me fight?!” You ponder her question for a bit.
“Hmm, you got me there. Tell you what. Why don’t we stop by that restaurant next to the park and I’ll buy you a cake as an apology?” you ask, trying not to sound like you’re begging.
She stares at you, obviously still a little mad. “Two cakes and you’ll spar with me till supper when we get home.”
“Isn’t that a little much? Those cakes are pretty expensive.”
“Then your apology is rejected.”
“Fine, fine. I’ll do it,” you mutter, secretly glad that the price of her forgiveness was so low today. You offer her your hand, but she slaps it away before stomping her way towards the park. You hurry after her and ask, “Are you sure you don’t want a ride?” Nuo’s response is an annoyed humph, which tells you that you’re still not completely forgiven yet. For a while you both walk in silence. Unable to stand the awkward atmosphere you ask, “So why do you want to fight so much anyway?”
Nuo looks towards you, face blushing slightly, and says, “Because I want to be like you dage.” The thought of Nuo as a seven foot tall giant pops into your head and you quickly purge it from your mind.
“Why would you want to do a fool thing like that?”
“Because you’re cool dage! Well, you’re cool when you’re not being a pain at least. You’re always standing up to bullies by yourself and you always win, even if you get outnumbered. It’s so cool!” You let the fact that your sister just call you cool sin in for a moment. To think that she looked up to you that much. You weren’t sure about what she meant by you “sticking up to bullies” though. Sure you were a delinquent, but it was mostly because you did what you wanted like letting your hair grow out or skipping class. You did get into a lot of fights though, mostly other delinquents and mamono looking to prove themselves. You got your reputation as the “Great Lion” because of your size, martial arts prowess and intimidating looks gave you a near perfect winning streak, even outnumbered. Maybe that’s where Nuo got the idea that you fought bullies? Regardless, hearing your sister sing your praises with a smile on her face made you feel all fuzzy inside. You reach over and tussle her hair, to which she responds with a swift kick to your ass.
In good spirits, you both arrive at the park. After spotting the restaurant, Nuo sprints ahead of you. “Last one there’s a stinky cheese!” You grin and pick up speed. Engrossed in your race, you don’t notice the two figures rushing towards you from behind. They both tackle and pin you to the ground. You look up to see a werewolf blindside Nuo and pick her up by her ankle.
“Wow boss! This was a lot easier than I thought!” exclaimed one of the figures holding you down.
“Yeah. You’d think the Great Lion would put up more of a fight!” the other said in agreement.
“We’re not done yet girls,” the werewolf scolded. She signals to someone you can’t see and two more werewolves come out of hiding and go stand on either side of their leader. Recovering from the sudden attack, Nuo begins punching and kicking in an effort to break loose. Unfortunately, due to her small stature, all she manages to do is flail about in the air. The leader laughs at the display. “Aren’t you a feisty little thing? Hey girls, check her out!” All five of your assailants laugh at your sister’s struggles. Your blood boils at the display.
“What do you want?!” Nuo cries out, her voice brave and defiant.
“Well little mousey, we just want to have a little fun with your onii-chan. And you’re going to help us! All right, get off him.” The two assailants holding you down release you and you pick yourself up off the ground. Looks like they want you to put up a fight. If that’s what they’re after, you’re happy to oblige.
“What do you mean? I’d never help you!” spits Nuo.
“Well, we Tumble Wolves have been interested in your brother for a while now. So we’ve been watch…” She never gets to finish her sentence. Sensing an opening, you approach the leader with speeds that surprise even you and punch her in the face. Out of the corner of your eye, you see the werewolf let go of Nuo and pray that she’ll be okay. Before she flies too far, you grab the leader by her collar, then you turn and throw her at the two werewolves that knocked you over, flattening them. Continuing your spin, you throw out your arm and clothesline a fourth werewolf. Once you lose your momentum, you give the last werewolf a withering glare. With her pack mates soundly defeated, she whimpers and runs with her tail between her legs. You watch her run for a momentum make sure she doesn’t try attacking you again before turning your attention to your sister. You rush to her side as she picks herself up, trying not to panic.
“Nuo! Are you alright?! You’re not hurt anywhere are you?!” you ask her as you help her up. Once she’s standing, you quickly look her over for injuries. Convinced that the worse injuries she got were a few scratches, you pull Nuo into a bone breaking hug. “Thank goodness you’re alright! I was so worried! I’m sorry Nuo, I should have seen them sooner!” Easing up on your hug, you hope to find Nuo’s ‘thank you for saving me! I love you’ face. Instead it seems you’ve earned her ‘what the hell are you doing? You’re embarrassing me!’ face. “Something wrong?” you ask tentatively.
“Why didn’t you leave me any?” is your only response.
“I wanted to fight too! It could have been so fun! Fighting the villainous Tumble Wolves! Together! But nooooo! You had to go and beat them all by yourself! Stupid dage!” rants Nuo.
“B-but I just wanted you to be safe!” you protest.
“No excuses!” Nuo spits. Oh no! Your sister hates you! You quickly grovel at her feet.
“I’m sorry! I swear I only had good intentions! Please forgive me oh great Nuo!”
“ARE YOU TRYING TO PISS ME OFF?!?!” Nuo shouts as her face turns a deep scarlet. You can hardly stand the look of disdain she gives you, before she begins to grin. You have a bad feeling about this… “You want my forgiveness? What’s it worth to you?”
“Anything!” you answer without a second thought.
“Anything huh?” she repeats, her smile growing larger and more mischievous. “I’ll forgive you if you let me fight by your side dage!”
“… Couldn’t I just get you another cake?” you quietly ask. Nuo crosses her arms and pouts.
“So much for doing anything.”
“Well, I meant anything but that!”
“… Liar.” Ok, that one stung a little. Maybe you can dissuade her?
“Alright, I’ll do it,” you relent as you get up off of the ground. “However you’ll have to do something for me.”
“Great!” Nuo exclaims with a smile. “And what would that be?”
“You have to let me call you Mighty Mouse again.”
“Why not? It’s cute.”
“I. Am. Not. Cute!” Nuo shouts while adorably stomping the ground.
“Of course you are,” you disagree. You hold out your hand for her. “Let me call you Mighty Mouse and we can fight together. Deal?” Nuo looks at your hand and ponder to herself for a moment. Almost reluctantly, she climbs up your arm so that she can sit on your shoulder.
“Fine, but not in public.” You chuckle, enjoying the slightly embarrassed look on her face.
“Thanks Mighty Mouse.” You laugh some more as Nuo turns a vivid shade of red. “Tell you what. Since the Thimble Wolves were after me, I’ll get you another cake.”
“Whatever, like I care. Idiot…” You chuckle one more time as you make your way towards the restaurant. As you leave, the leader of the Rumble Wolves manages to regain consciousness. On top of her two allies, she watches you and Nuo walking away.
“I-I think I’m in love…” is all she can say before losing consciousness once again.