Part 1: Takatora's Past Edit
It was midnight, and Takatora was leaning on the desk of his father's as there were several books and documents were right in front of him, sleeping. The entirety of those documents involve of his father's projects regarding Yggdrasil Corporation, which he is obviously aware that among those included human experimentation. The older Kureshima kept himself locked for a long period of time trying to expose all the remnants of his father's legacy alone, the reason he kept himself isolated onto his father's room is to prevent his younger brother Mitsuzane to find out the truth about their father.
Suddenly, a knock from the door woke him up. When Takatora hears it, he draws out his Melon Energy Lockseed as if he senses an intruder. But, it turns out to be Samus alone.
"Oh, it's you." Takatora said in relief. "Close the door."
"You have kept yourself confined here the whole day." Samus said as she intently looked onto Takatora's eyes. "Is something bothering you?"
"Yes. If you look all the documents I brought out to the table." Takatora points out all his father's paperwork. Samus read each one of them. "Those were all my father's hardships..." The older Kureshima nodded, not only Samus have commended their father being hard working, but she is also shocked to hear that the Kureshimas' father, Amagi was in fact using children as human experiments.
"That's terrible." Samus' expression transitions into sorrow and sympathy to Takatora. "How could he use innocent children for his own personal gain? Was he turning any of them into bioweapons?"
"Bio- what?!" something rang a bell into Takatora's mind.
"Bioweapons." She explains about the concept of bioweapons from her world. "Bioweapons, as what you people today call it, weapons of mass destruction, are augmented through genetic enhancement, or to an extent genetic alteration or mutation. Using those weapons are obviously illegal, and but on the shadows my employers from the Galactic Federation are secretly creating bioweapons."
"What?!" Takatora is shocked about the implications about his father upon interpreting Samus' sentiments, and brings up one particular example. "I see. Among those he had experimented on was a household maid of ours. But the years have passed, he was killed by one of his own guinea pigs. That same guinea pig whom I considered a friend and I endear the most in my younger years."
"What did they do to her?" Samus asked sternly as she feels the gloomy state of the older Kureshima.
"Like what I said, father used those children as his mere pawns to become potential members of Yggdrasil Corporation. Akatsuki Touka, the maid hired by father, was among those. They used her to gain ability to control Cracks and the plants of Helheim, with the use of a Lockseed called a "Ringo" Lockseed. But, she went rogue, to the point assassinated my father and targeted other members of Yggdrasil." Takatora brought up regarding the history of Yggdrasil, along with his father's involvement. And a moment later, he also asked how many times Samus had her DNA being altered. "And how about you, you almost contracted a parasite that almost killed you. But, the Federation came up a cure coming from the infant alien you saved before."
"Yes. I was injected with a vaccine containing a Metroid's DNA - the baby's DNA. As a result, I was able to subjugate X Parasite-infected foes with ease. The downside is, the Metroids were susceptible to sub-zero temperatures... And I am also affected by cold temperatures."
"So, Metroids are also prone to cold." Takatora concluded. "You know, whenever your body feels abnormally cold, it's hypothermia."
"Who told you that?" the bounty hunter jokingly asked.
"A friend of mine. He was a researcher for Yggdrasil." Takatora answered, while bringing up his former friend, Ryoma Sengoku. "He was the brains of both the Sengoku Driver and Genesis Drivers. Apart from that, what are other organisms in your world that were being exploited for bioweapons?"
"X Parasites, Phazon, as well as Metroids." Samus answered. "I destroyed all the Metroids in the planet of SR388, leaving one that clung beside me until it met its end on Planet Zebes. I was almost corrupted by Phazon, its monstrous energy puts a strain on my suit to the point it nearly took over my entire body. And the X Parasites were my last battle before coming here." Samus brings up her experience regarding other hazardous effects that she had come contact to
"So, your body is able to withstand upon coming contact with other dangerous substances and other organisms in your world?" The older Kureshima asked, rolled his eyes at Samus.
"And if I didn't, I would be left but stardust in the galaxy." Samus replied with an opposite sentiment. "But, I did thank the people who raised me for providing me the instincts."
"Let me guess, the Chozo." Takatora answered. "And that old bird is among them, I presume. He saw you how you integrated your body at Mitsuzane and your soul to me using that ability. And for a second, we already had a chance destroying that Space Pirate before he escaped"
"That's why you finally understand that you know who really I am." Samus' face softened as she feels the acknowledgement of Takatora's feelings.
"For the time being, can I ask you a favor?" Takatora said before Samus could leave the room. "First, about what we are talking about our father... You must not let Mitsuzane or anyone else know about this. Ever since after the aftermath of the Helheim incident, Mitsuzane has been emotionally stressed for all the sins he had committed - until now, that guilt the dwell in his heart continued to haunt him, despite my efforts to encourage him to move on. If Mitsuzane hears all about this, he would instantly fall into a fit of insanity. That's why we have too keep this in the dark to ourselves. And secondly, in order for all of my father's secrets to be kept permanently in the dark, you have to destroy the research facility where he had been administering human experimentation."
"Why me?" Samus looked angry, as if she is letting Takatora to ask her to do his dirty work.
"No, you're missing the point." Takatora continued. "I'm not saying that you would destroy the research facility alone, I'm going with you!"
"What? Are you really sure about this? Your father seems to be disappointed at your own decision." Samus seems feeling disapproved with the older Kureshima's intent.
"My father had disappointed me its not because of all the secrets he kept from us, its because I never seen him eye to eye. And now, Mitsuzane and I were but a mere shadow of our father. All that it left us is the sorrow and pain that takes forever to heal! I'm not doing this for my sake, I'm doing this for Mitsuzane's sake for him to move on, and for all the victims my father had subjugated so they can find peace."
"Takatora..." Samus knew the stance of Takatora's intent to atone for his and for Mitsuzane's sins. It was in fact true that Takatora lived at the shadow of his own faher, only for him to be betrayed by his co-workers. Mitsuzane also shared the same fate; with the main difference that the Over Lord Inves did play a part on the youth's downward spiral.
"So, will you help me, Samus? This is my only way to move on from the atrocities we committed in the past, and I am left without a choice of doing so." Takatora once again convinces the bounty hunter with this mission, with Samus herself reluctantly accepted his request out of empathy.
The older Kureshima will explain on the following day what they will do regarding her mission. When its already late, Takatora went to bed. A few minutes later, when Takatora already slept, Samus unwittingly crept close on the older Kureshima's side, as she likely slept with his side.
In Takatora's point of view, his dreams reveal flashbacks about the time he learned of his father's death, and the household maid who returned to them.
- "Takatora: Mitsuzane... How did you feel about what happened to father?
Mitsuzane: I don't feel anything right now. But, I have other important things to do besides mourning our father's passing.
- ―A flashback from Takatora's dream when he and Mitsuzane learn of their father's death.
Then another flashback recalled when the Kureshima patriarch, Amagi introduced their household maid to his children, Akatsuki Touka. But, the worse part comes the time where the Kureshimas' home being infested by Helheim's plants thanks to an Armored Rider who can control Cracks.
Here, Mitsuzane was almost attacked by an unknown assailant, only for Takatora to come for the save; when he attempted to transform, his Melon Energy Lockseed was taken away. Then, another flashback laps into where Takatora is betrayed by his cohorts when Ryoma Sengoku transformed into Kamen Rider Duke in front of him, and the scene where he almost fall to his "death", followed by when he confronted Mitsuzane when the latter revealed his true motives when he was using Zangetsu Shin's powers. However, Takatora woke up, realizing it was just a dream, and was startled upon noticing Samus on his side, unwittingly sleeping beside him!
"Oh, it's just you!" the older Kureshima groaned, as he faced directly to Samus. "How long are you going to cling yourself up to me?"
"I'm sorry." Samus said. "I don't usually know what I'm doing, as much I needed to be alone, I longed to have company with others. Sorry for being a bother."
"I see. It has been boorish for you to keep you alone, despite that loneliness you have in your heart." Takatora remarked.
"Takatora, since how did you even know how to say that line?" Samus looked intently at the older Kureshima's face, when she recalled the time when he said the line from Commander Adam Malkovich, "Any objections, lady?" during her first encounter with Kamen Rider Faiz.
Takatora simply answered only as a means to fully know her. Takatora also revealed at the moment Samus stayed with him and Micchy, Adam already told them to look after her in his place. That's why Takatora began to fully learn things about the bounty hunter. He briefly hang his head low in his sleep, as Samus turns away, as she converse with the older Kureshima.
"What good things that you learn from your father?" Samus whispered. "There is something that your father taught you something growing up."
"True. There is one important thing that what my father taught me - noblesse oblige. Those who own power and privilege have a duty to be fulfilled, even if it means getting your hands dirty. Given the fact you are not even familiar of aristocratic concepts, I guess there are people that you know owe you a debt of gratitude." Takatora even explained to her about the concept of noblesse oblige, an obligation of nobility.
"The Chozo did owe me a lot of debt of gratitude for them, they raised me after I was left orphaned after Space Pirates attacked my home colony." Samus brought up her upbringings during her tutelage with the Chozo. "They embedded me with their blood, resulting me gaining my suit. I will never forget those days."
"I gotta admit... Your countless battles in your world earned the respect of those who need a peaceful place in the galaxy to live." the older Kureshima said, commending Samus' experiences. "Since the time you come into this world, where you are given a mission to gather the Kamen Riders to battle the ominous threat in your world... The only thing I want to say is, you have to believe in yourself, as the long road ahead is deep. From what Kazuraba used to say, people can change. A best way to convince other Kamen Riders is you showcase your willingness to protect humanity, and even the slightest act of self-sacrifice."
"Any objections, lady?" Takatora said it again, when Samus turns her attention directly at him, she almost slaps him on the face, but lets her hand touch the older Kureshima's face. But, still, Takatora couldn't help but chuckle and finds himself captivated by Samus' beauty and abilities. Nevertheless, her friendship with both Micchy and Takatora were proven to be invaluable, as the brothers will continue to help Samus' mission on the long road ahead.
Three days later...
Samus and Takatora arrived in the Zawame's Children's Nursery; it was still dawn, the institution still remains isolated as it is today. Even the Restoration Bureau could not complete their demolitions job due to the isolated facility now a haven for monsters - despite the fact that the Inves are no longer on Earth, and already migrated onto the Helheim Planet. Just when they about to open the gate, they see a Bat Imagin, along with a flock of Raydragoons flying right above them.
"Just as I suspected. This place is now crawling full of monsters, not just Inves." Takatora said, as he already saw the presence of monsters inside the facility, as seen when a Zebraskull emerging from a mirror; associated to Kamen Rider Ryuki, and more Imagins when their bodies take form in the surface through the sands of time; associated to Den-O.
"Looks like we are going to clean house. Takatora, let's do this." Samus is determined to clear the facility out of monsters.
"Well, let's go." Takatora said as he equips his Sengoku Driver and Melon Lockseed as they prepare to open the gates.