An original fiction by Wax.
It happens in an isolated city, surrounded by a forest at the north and a gaping hole in the bottom. The city itself is cut in half by a landslide-caused fissure, now literally separating Downtown from the Upper-City.
This work presents examples of:
- Badass Crew: The Black Squadron starts as a villainous example.
- Death-Activated Superpower: Three of them, the Downtown Commissary and the Imperator eventually causing the City's demise.
- Downer Ending: The fic ends with the City entirely destroyed and its ruins fallen down the bottomless cliff. Only W Ord Of God confirms anyone but Ryoku as a survivor of the city going down.
- Egopolis: The Imperator makes the city this progressively with time in Part 3.
- Everyone Is Related: The society is somewhat inspired by feudal and pre-revolution France, and the social standards as well as the inbreeding of nobility is kept there. Every single character descends from two persons (quite the Tangled Family Tree since four Official Couple pairings are brought up).
- Five-Man Band: Each arc has one for the villain. Each Big Bad is killed.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Most teams that appear. Though, they are not always together.
- Go-Karting with Bowser: To a degree, though in the Upper City important stakes are put on Mario Kart style racing duels.
- Leeroy Jenkins: In the beginning to Part 2, Yuuzou, Mei and Souki all directly strike back at the Star League. As the middle of it proves, they all lost.
- The Mafia: There is a Downtown Mafia. Sometimes they're just called "the Families". Though, the Mafia is only background and gives much less trouble to the heroes than the Downtown Police.
- Rotating Protagonist: In the first part, Ryoku and Yuuzou switch main protagonist status. Every time one rescues the other, he gets captured for his trouble.
- Solid Gold Poop: Blonde hair is so rare that the few blondes in the setting (Ryoku, Ikura) are sometimes assulted for it and/or hide it.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Averted: Season 2's Elite Mook Joudan has an Early-Bird Cameo at the very beginning and has his inner magic fully mastered, being nearly on par with the Imperator. Kasaru, his superior and The Dragon, is weaker than him until the end to Part 2.
- Storming the Castle: The ending Part 2 is the invasion of Star League HQ, the Wand Tower. Part 3 mimicks it with the invasion of the Imperator's palace.
- Traumatic Superpower Awakening: It's a rule here, with the deeper the trauma, the more powerful magic you can use. One's inner magic is only fully unlocked by near-death experiences, but emotional trauma or Training from Hell can partially unlock it.
- Un-person: The Imperator attempted to do this with the entire Star League in Part 3.
- Wacky Racing: The local form of lawful duelling.
Ryoku Sudou note
- The Hero. A Downtowner ever since he was conscious, he was abandoned at the age of one. His difficult life left him to handle himself from a very young age, working within the Mafia network to ensure himself a stable money income. His craftiness and magical power left him with great success in infiltration as well as force deployments, leaving him with an incredible reputation.
- Awesome, but Impractical: His first fight with the Black Squadron, has him meet quick defeat because his hand-to-hand approach to fighting is this.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Ryoku is the source of most kills in this fiction, despite being the nicest guy around.
- Expy: To Himura Kenshin. Same ponytail, Nice Guy who you shouldn't piss, and even the orange hair when under the influence of his Primal Magic.
- Mr. Fixit: He built a kart himself with stolen spare pieces and metal chunks he melted himself. And he's 17.
- Ninja: As "the One with the Mask". He drops the mask very early though.
- Power Dyes Your Hair: From blonde to orange when influenced by his Primal Magic..
- The Power of Love and The Power of Hate: His inner Primal Magic works on emotions, making it run on both tropes.
- Superpowered Evil Side: His Primal Magic-influenced self is cold and murderous, a persona which Ryoku constantly repressed during his childhood or with the Mafia. Though it's actually Ryoku's repressed self acting up.
- Teen Genius: As a mechanic. He just manages as a fighter, a racer, and a magician. Until he finally "learns" his inner Primal Magic.
- Took a Level in Badass: Each part has him take one. In Part 1, Mei teaches him about some magic elements, Level Grinding him up to par. In Part 2, he's able to rescue Yuuzou all by himself while previously he had to have Mei's support to get Yuuzou out of here at his own expense. And in Part 3, he gets his Primal Magic form.
- The Lancer, a cynical fugitive, constantly on the run in and out of the jail. He is out to settle a score in the Upper City, which is why the Black Squadron is consistently after him ever since he was thrown Downtown.
- Foil: Cynical, earthly, and tall in contrast with Ryoku's small, daydreaming, idealist nature.
- Hell-Bent for Leather
- Justice Will Prevail: Despite his cynicism, he's determined to make one thing right.
- Limited Wardrobe: He's been wearing the single same outfit for two years, as a souvenir of the Upper City.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: During the last arc, he leaves the City with Mei after Joudan blew up the Big Mall and did the same, because the power struggles will destroy the City like Downtown.
- Shock and Awe: Gets his inner magic, which is this, in Part 2. Irony wanted his near-death-experience to be due to Electric Torture.
- Tall, Dark, and Handsome
- A mysterious but benevolent and very powerful magician bound to Yuuzou for a long while, released by Ryoku and Yuuzou from the Police's grasp at episode 2. She backs Ryoku and Yuuzou up until she regains her strength, at which point she enters their struggles and starts joining the fights.
- Big Good: For a big portion of the first arc, when she's able to be Mission Control via telepathy but still unable to fight.
- Limited Wardrobe: Same as Yuuzou, she hasn't changed clothes since she was thrown Downtown to not forget about what she was, and what she wants to reclaim.
- Obfuscating Insanity: She faked the success of the Star Magister's brainwashing on her.
- Pimped-Out Dress
- Psychic Powers: She uses them to track Ryoku and Yuuzou, teach the former about magic, and when she recovers she uses them for battle.
- Purple Is Powerful: Her eyes.
- Squishy Wizard
- Tragic Keepsake: She was lost into the City at a very young age. Her necklace is the only souvenir she has of an older brother, though with time the photo that was inside has long faded.
Type-0 / Souki note
- A young girl dumped by the Star League across the bridge that separates the two parts of the City. She was sent Downtown to be executed, but she was rescued by Mei before the Police got their hands on her.
- Cloning Blues: She's a twin of the first clone of her series.
- Flower in Her Hair: The evidence that her inner magic is Plantlife is that it grew naturally after her would-be death.
- "Hell, Yes!" Moment: When Yuuzou and Mei not only realize that she's also capable at fighting, but that she has a bone to pick with the Star League, they start to see the end to their trouble.
- Meaningful Name: The "ki" in her name is a counter for objects, and "sou" is her "number", as in: she's the twin of the first.
- Nice Girl
- Super Prototype: As she demonstrates by defeating Shiki by herself.
- White Mage: With Green Thumb instead of light magic, but it is her main role. She even provides food for the four Konvicts.
The Black Squadron
- A Downtown Police captain, and the Commissary's daughter. One of Downtown's most trained fighters, she excels at identifying and manipulating Battle Aura. She is the one to identify Ryoku and get the huge bounty he had on his head, but as she didn't manage to keep him jailed, she's threatened of execution by her father.
- Braids of Action
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Hands one of those to Ryoku, his Mafia boss, and outside karting she can pretty much beat almost everyone.
- Dark Action Girl: Notably stronger in hand-to-hand fighting than any single other girl in the setting. And with magic in her arsenal, she's capable of quick kills on Mafia heads as her first appearance suggests.
- "Well Done, Daughter" Girl: She wished her father would express pride over anything she does instead of wanting her dead for failing him even once.
- Mei's rival for longer than even Yuuzou remembers, she was sent to guard her in Downtown's jail until Mei was dead. She tries to undermine Mei directly rather than having to do with any of the other Konvicts, but she tends to break from Kuraj's orders to do so.
- Elegant Gothic Lolita
- Fiery Redhead: Though most of her hair is dyed black.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: To Mei. Except during Mei's brief return in the Star League.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Girly Girl to Ikura's Tomboy. Despite her fiery attitude in contrast to Ikura's cool-headed demeanor, she is the one who takes care of her appearance and wears dresses.
- A former indicator of Kuraj, he's a street crook who lived by himself. Famed in the streets for his strength, he's unknowingly to all cooperating with the Black Squadron. He beat up Yuuzou several times already, but the Konvicts realize his affiliation a bit late.
- The Brute: He's as much of an asskicker as Ikura, except he knows his stuff about racing too.
- Loophole Abuse: He has the right to drive without license if he's on a Black Squaddron operation, which is why he's bad at driving.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: In contrast to his more-educated teammates, he's even worse than Yuuzou in regards to etiquette. Which is why he's never speaking to the Police aside from the Black Squadron.
- Tattooed Crook: Not that he shows off the tattoo, but he has it.
- Black Squadron leader, and one of the highest-rankers in the Downtown Police. He's often at odds with the Commissary due to his choice of companions. Tall and imposing, he tries to intimidate the Konvicts out of action while he investigates about the reasons they get so much focus from the Downtown Police.
- Aerith and Bob: The only one with a very unreal, non-American, non-Japanese name. His name is a butchering of the word "courage".
- Anti-Villain: In Part 3, he reforms the Black Squaddron under the Imperator by his orders, but tries to undermine him from his position. He eventually succeeds in killing him.
- Bastard Understudy: It's a known reason why the Commissary doesn't like him, not that he can do anything about that. Subverted when he does pull off the kill on the Imperator as he fully announces a rightful order to everyone in the Imperial Stadium. Though, the Imperator had other plans.
- A Father to His Men: He protects his Black Squadron at all costs, providing Gouhei and later Ikura immunity to death sentence through threats.
- Nerves of Steel
- The Starscream: He has been this to three persons: the Downtown Commissary, the Burgmaster, and Rangiku.
The Star League
- An emotionally-unstable Star League magician, she's actually mind-controlled by a parasite (which is the thing named Juuki, not the girl), her real personality only surfacing in brief lapses. When brainwashed, she disguises as the Steel Serpent, a poison-wielding mass murderer who spreads terror through the working class sector of the Upper-City. She is actually Ryoku's long-lost twin sister who was kidnapped and forced comatose by the Star League.
- Ax-Crazy: In the second part, where she's an antagonist.
- Brainwash Residue: Her first semblance of speech is her parasite's trademark hissing sound.
- Demoted to Extra: The third part has her get raised by Kasaru since, her parasite killed, she's essentially a teenage girl with the mind of a one-year-old kid.
- Demonic Possession: A parasitic symbiote is the actual thing named Juuki, and is often in control of her until Kasaru kills it just before doing so on the Magister.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: She forgets a lot when her parasite is killed, to the point she barely remembers how to talk.
- Long-Lost Relative: She's Ryoku's long-lost twin sister.
- Poisonous Person
- There Are No Therapists: To his credit, Kasaru tries hard. The Magister himself has worked against him though.
- A gung-ho Star League agent, he promptly reveals himself as the leader to the pillagers that used to ransack Downtown. Despite looking frail, his raw magic power is quite high. In his tender youth, he used to survive with Ryoku in the No Man's Land until he eventually snatched a pillaging squad leader's quad and followed the others.
- Combat Pragmatist: If he can't achieve victory in a straight-up fight, he always packs Star Grenades, ready to throw them to sow destruction as a way to escape lost battles.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Ryoku's last mission with the Mafia was to snatch the latest Predator 3-wheel scooter model, but Joudan promptly roflstomped him and left Ryoku with the older model he had used to beat him with.
- Disaster Scavengers: The Star League pillagers he leads. Ryoku even meets him in a flash once, but both forgot who the other was.
- Evil Laugh: Fond of delivering those.
- Irony: The most immoral and assholish of all characters has Dream magic as his inner magic.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After the Star League is destroyed. Unlike Kasaru, Shiki and Juuki joining together, he just blasts his way out of the town, proving that nothing could punish him.
- A cunning and gifted Star League high-ranking mage, as well as Juuki's personal therapist. He tries to get her to open to him as he knows something's wrong with her. He's actually biding his time to take over the Star League, and kills the Magister after the Konvicts defeat him, only then learning the truth.
- Anti-Hero: Takes this role in Part 3 after Yuuzou and Mei leave.
- Deceptive Disciple
- Klingon Promotion: Despite Shiki being the Magister's next-in-line, he leads the remains of the Star League after his murder of the Magister.
- Manipulative Bastard
- Playing with Fire
- Red Eyes, Take Warning
- Secret Keeper
- The fourth clone of an experiment by the Magister to make the most powerful mages, she's the next-in-line to inherit the Star League. Arrogant and snobbish, she's also strong enough to beat Mei in direct magic power, which is what led her to her high status. As Kasaru finds out in the secret Star League documents after the Magister dies, she's genetically a Child by Rape and was almost killed at birth.
- Above the Influence: She refused to obey to the Star Magister Death-Activated Superpower mind control.
- An Ice Person: Not in behavior.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Next-in-line to inherit the Star League, because she's so powerful. Outpowering Mei's magic proves it.
- Black Magician Girl
- Daddy's Little Villain: To the Star Magister, though when he dies she quickly copes with it and unites with Kasaru against the Imperator.
- Little Miss Snarker
- Secret Weapon: In a way, she was the Star League's trump card, and few actually knew her.
- Spoiled Brat
- A noble from the nearby region named Kitamori, she's the daughter of a local duchess who was forced to commit suicide. She flees murder attempts by going south, but it only leads her to the City. She's tricked by the Star League at first, but eventually joins the Imperial Magus Division against them.
- Black Sheep: Besides Mei, she's the only person to not descend in a way from the Imperator's father.
- Genre Blindness: Didn't expect the Star League to fool her.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Wandering south wasn't the best idea given what kind of a Crapsack World awaited her.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Technically duchess of another city, but nonetheless is able to fight.
- World's Most Beautiful Woman: Claims to be so.
- A young hermit, renowned for defending the Imperator against a planned coup two years ago. He lives within a cave hidden in the sole lake the city has.
- Big Damn Heroes: How he saves Hijiri from the Star League's betrayal of her.
- Ineffectual Loner: He is with the Imperials In Name Only, and is especially wary of Ban and Rangiku.
- Old Master: Behaves like one despite being only 19. Given the Crapsack World the City is, everyone is perfectly fine with him being experienced at only 19 years of age.
- Puppet King: Defied. Shisui refused the Imperator's promotion of him to the Burgmaster's place.
- Real Men Wear Pink: He has pink hair.
- An Imperial Magus in-training, he is also the Burgmaster's son, and a local TV star with his own show: "Ban's Ban", which mainly consists in him making humorous failures. Behind that hides a cunning mind and a wide network of relations.
- Boisterous Bruiser
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: His own show features him getting roughed up or failing hilariously at everything he does. Nobody expected him to be even remotely competent, and he proceeds to make the Star Magister's death wish completely useless all by himself.
- Kung-Fu Wizard: Powerful both physically and magically, and able to endure beatdowns as proven in his show since he doesn't take stunt doubles.
- Magic Knight: His title as an archmage, though he doesn't use weaponry, taking him out of this trope to the above.
- The Worf Effect: Inflicts this on all of Shiki and Souki's sister-clones. While Shiki broke out by herself and Souki was snapped out of it by Mei, there were still about six of them murderously targeting the Imperator. He kills all six, and even takes the effort to add some more flashiness to his action, much like killing one with a Spinning Piledriver.
- The Princess herself, since she's the oldest of the Imperator's offspring. Kuraj is her bastardized younger brother. She plots to take over the throne "early" because of the Imperator's growing unpopularity, and of course she doesn't want the Konvicts to interfere.
- The Dragon: Despite being a Dragon with an Agenda, she still tries to "protect" the Imperator against the Konvicts.
- Extra-ore-dinary: A master of Metal Magic.
- Magic Knight: Has the power to create steel weapons and other kinds of powers to go with it.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Her reaction to the death of the Burgmaster and her discovery about his intentions.
- Rich Bitch
- Worthy Opponent: Considers the Konvicts as such, all but Souki. Souki makes her swallow her pride in the end.
WARNING: Spoilers ahead!
- A Downtown Mafia and a fighting aficionado, he was "The Man With The Mask"'s last employer. He organized street fights in Downtown, but Ryoku only ended up seeing him meet his death.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: For all the talent he claims to have, Ikura killed him off in two attacks.
- Killed Off for Real: At Chapter 1, no less.
- Solid Gold Poop: The one enforcer of this trope. When blonde Ikura steps up to fight him, he immediately thinks of taking her hair.
Type-1/Ikki, Type-2/Niki, Type-3/Sanki, Type-5/Goki, Type-6/Rikki, Type-7/Shikki, Type-8/Hakki, Type-9/Kuki
- Clones from the Star League that also double as the Star Magister's Bodyguard Babes. Products of the same cloning experiment that created Souki and Shiki.
- Bare-Fisted Monk: Type-5 was just physically strong, and rioted in the rich district of the city in order to reach the Imperator on a formal visit. Ban proved he was stronger than her and gives her a Spinning Piledriver for her trouble.
- Cloning Blues
- Cold Sniper: Type-3. She ends up sabotaging her own plan by going in the open and attempting to shoot the Imperator, but Ban kills her quickly.
- Death by Origin Story: Type-1 and Type-7 both long-dead.
- Type-1 was siamese with Souki, and when they parted both, she died instantly.
- Type-7 was murdered by Shiki during a test training.
- Noble Demon: Type-9 defied openly the whole Tops Police to battle. However, Ban came along, shielded the few shots directed at him, and buried her.
- Suicide Attack: Type-2's plan of choice is crashing her kart right in the Imperator at high speed. She crashes into a wall of dirt summoned by Ban and dies in the accident. Type-8's plan was to infiltrate the High Palace and explode when the Imperator sat on his throne. Ban found her before the Imperator did and bashes her head in.
- The Worf Effect: They're talked up as potential threats to the Imperator himself by Shiki considering they're six, but since each works on her own and progressively gets crazier, Ban single-handedly kills all of them.
- You Got Murder: Type-6 disguised herself as a delivery girl to hit the Imperator by surpise. Ban came to receive her and killed her.
- Death-Activated Superpower: All have one, with relatively important effects.
The Downtown Commissary note
- The Imperator's youngest son, left to manage the entire Downtown. Since he doesn't care about his territory, he does almost nothing for the people, leaving the Police out of most things. Though, it's matters from above that eventually claim his life, with Yuuzou and Mei's attacks leaving him open to be assaulted and killed by Ryoku. With him, the whole Downtown dies.
- Disc-One Final Boss And a somewhat easily-defeated one at that. Ryoku kills him, even without Primal Magic.
- Evil Overlord: Concerning Downtown. He's actually just a Sinister Minister under the Imperator.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Hates the fact that he's been sent to Downtown with the garbage.
- It's All About Me: He sees Downtown's people as garbage essentially, despite having been demoted to one.
- Manipulative Bastard: Has the Police do his bidding, though both parties being openly distrustful doesn't help him.
- Super Strength: The sole power he gets to show.
- Taking You with Me: He attempted this with his Death-Activated Superpower, but failed.
Baron Sudou note
- Leader to an underground resistance, he was supposed deceased for 16 years. Only Yuuzou gets to meet him, because the moment he hears one hint about his abandoned twins son and daughter, he wanders the street to meet them, meeting his untimely end at the hands of Juuki who, unknown to him, is his daughter.
- Black Sheep: The only good guy who descends from the City's Founding Father.
- Felony Misdemeanor: He was blacklisted and marked for death for his attempt to reinstate family names (when he adopted Sudou, the name of the manor he lived in, as his family name).
- Nice Job Breaking It, Yuuzou: If Yuuzou didn't note the physical resemblance between him and Ryoku, he wouldn't have wandered in the open and died.
- Offing the Offspring: Victim of the inversion of this trope.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: He dies less than 1 day following his first appearance.
The Star Magister
- The leader of the Star League, and the Imperator's little brother. He runs various experiments to increase his magic power and become eternal, in an attempt to outlive the Imperator and take his place.
- Ax-Crazy: What his Death Wish eventually made everyone affected.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Shiki mentions having gone through that at his hands to unlock her inner magic. She's scarred enough to remember it, and it happened immediately following her birth.
- Evil Old Folks: 55 years old, and probably the biggest jerkass of the whole family.
- Mind Control: His Death Wish. However, since he's dead, he's unconscious and therefore the results become unpredictable and based on his last desire, to kill the Imperator.
- Psychic Powers: His main power. Even beyond death, he has all his daughter-clones attempt assassination on the Imperator, though with his grip on life gone, screws progressively go loose.
- Take Over the World: Intends to have the Star League take over the Imperial Magus, then using them to strip the Imperator of his powers by threat and/or kill him. Joudan and Juuki unwittingly drew too much attention to the Star League instead.
- The Imperator's oldest son, and the leader to the Tops Police. He opposes the Konvicts' messing with the order, but is also mounting a coup against the Imperator.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Got at his place by beating his two brothers: the Downtown Commissary and Baron Sudou. Bad news for him: Part 3 pits him against Primal Ryoku.
- A Father to His Men: He issues an open one-on-one challenge to the Konvicts to avoid too many deaths in the Tops Police.
- Noble Demon
- The Starscream: Though nobody knew of his intentions before his death.
- The self-glorified major figure of the City. He legally changed his name to Imperator to signify his status. He plotted to assume absolute control over his city, which he seized from his father.
- Badass Grandpa: Fights Primal Ryoku to a draw after having seemingly killed Shisui.
- Big Bad: One of the most archetypal.
- Despotism Justifies the Means
- The Emperor: The "Shadow Emperor" subtype.
- Evil Old Folks: 58 years old.
- Evil Overlord
- It's All About Me
- Meaningful Rename: He legally changed his name to his position.
- Non-Action Big Bad: Subverts this by giving a race-battle to Ryoku.
- Orcus on His Throne
- Royal Blood: And so few people stand against him because they don't have it... Ryoku being his nephew.
- Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: He ruled out family names so that his offspring and the rest of his family couldn't get anything from him.
- Evil Is Petty: That's the sole reason he left Baron Sudou for dead 16 years before the story: he tried to instate Sudou as his family name.
- 0% Approval Rating: He's almost there, but nobody can find people who could replace him.
The City's Founding Father
- The founder of the City, he isolated his population from everything and built the City aside a huge cliff.
- Assimilation Plot: Had a good part of the population under a form of Mind Control that forbade them from even thinking anything bad about him before the Imperator, who wasn't under this stranglehold, killed him.
- Death by Origin Story: Imperator putsched him and threw him off the cliff in what would become Downtown.
- Evil Old Folks: Apparently, even the Imperator was more popular than him, to the point that the Imperator wasn't hated but beloved for killing him.
- No Name Given: He's only referred to as "Father", or as his full title.
- Sequel Hook: His backstory links him with the Alkatos, from Inside the Cluster, an obscure fiction from my brother.