May 5, 2016
125. HIDEKI NAGAO
Danzo’s Temple, New Japan, Platinum City, USA, Earth (Core Reality); Late 21st Century
Power Rating: 1 – 100
POWERS, ABILITIES, WEAPONS & TOOLS
Hideki is trained in the ancient art of ninjutsu and is an incredibly talented martial artist. He is skilled with a variety of weapons, including nunchaku and blades.
Hideki Nagao was born in Danzo‘s Temple to two Iga Clan members. As a child, Hideki was very shy and often kept to himself. He would study everything and everyone, but from a distance. As a toddler, he marveled at his parents while they trained with their team and together as a couple, mimicking their moves in private and practicing what he saw. This led him to developing a knack for ninjutsu, and at a young age he began progressing past his peers. As a teenager, he was offered a position as an assistant team leader. He would have been second in command for a low ranking group, but it was still an honor nonetheless. However, he declined the position due to his loner personality. Hideki could work well in a team, but he had no desire to lead one.
WEIGHT: 178 lbs.
SKIN: Light beige
After declining the position, his parents thought Hideki might be better suited for the “Iga Assassins Guild”. It was overseen by the master ninja Faceless, and specialized in training elite ninja to conduct solo assassination missions as their primary tasks. Being the son of two existing veteran Iga Clan members and having a young, yet distinguished career already, Hideki would have been a shoe-in. His pension for keeping to himself also made him a prime candidate. So, his parents took it upon themselves to enroll Hideki. Nevertheless, after receiving his acceptance scroll, he declined once more. This left his parents baffled.
Hideki was a quiet soul with a calm spirit. He did not seek action or crave fame through accomplishing feats like most of his peers. He simply wanted to be the best ninja he could be and excel in using discernment when it came to making decisions regarding his life. While every Iga member lived, breathed and bled for the clan, Hideki was different in that he saw their purpose as being much more than just shinobi for hire. He saw the clan as a means to right the imbalances in the world by maintaining an equilibrium. He empathized with both sides of the struggle between good and evil, believing both are necessary in life. He would often tell those who cared to listen that without one, the other becomes void of definition, and without both the scale would eventually topple. Many dismissed Hideki’s words, but a few paid attention. Those Iga were Interface and Danzo. They kept tabs on his progress throughout his fledgling ninja career, letting his parents know privately they admired Hideki for his keen mind and perception. This eventually afforded him the support of his parents to follow his own path as their son always wanted to do.
This path led him to great success, through what some of his fellow clansmen and women considered unconventional means. Then one particular night, his path brought him into an alley in the New Japan section of Platinum City, where he crossed the paths of several individuals who would change his life forever. The first one was the senior citizen super-villain RC Allen. Hideki was walking down the street, dressed as a civilian, when he heard the sound of a man pleading for his life. He turned down the alley to find RC pummeling another older man. The ninja immediately came to the rescue and engaged the the assailant! RC’s ability to create teleportation vortexes made him a formidable combatant and difficult to pin down, but Hideki’s great speed and incredible skill proved too much for the thug. RC was forced to retreat through one of his vortexes.
When Hideki went to check the victim, he was very thankful. But he also had a very peculiar look in his eyes. Suddenly, Hideki fell into a dreary daze. This old man also had powers – telepathic powers – and he was using them on the ninja. A few minutes later Hideki woke up. He was lying on the ground, and his head was still very groggy. The only thing he could remember was the old man telling him that his name was “Confidential”, and that he was planning to sell all of the secrets of the Iga Clan to their mortal enemies, the Platinum City Yakuza. Hideki knew he had to get this information back to his master Danzo, but he was still disoriented and too dizzy to find his footing. So, he sat down and concentrated on channeling his chi to regain equilibrium.
His night, however, was far from over, for as Hideki sat in that alley, meditating, he suddenly felt a ghostly presence. He opened his eyes and saw a female apparition sitting across from him. For a moment he sat there admiring her ethereal beauty; then without warning, the ghost materialized into a solid woman and leaped at him! Hideki ducked, in time to save his own neck from getting sliced by the sword she wielded. He had regained his senses just enough to parry her subsequent attacks as well, but he was still not stable enough to fully engage the skilled femme fatale. His only hope of surviving was to retreat. He was able to counter a sword strike with a kick to the face, stunning his adversary for a few seconds, allowing him to scale the wall of one of the buildings. But just as he reached the roof of the seven-story structure, a bullet ripped through his shoulder. His arm immediately went numb with cold, as he quickly realized he’d been hit with an ice-bullet. He quickly unleashed a barrage of throwing stars with his good arm, and followed that with smashing a smoke bomb to cover his escape. Hideki kept moving and when he turned around, he saw that she was not in pursuit.
The wounded ninja finally made it back to Danzo’s Temple. The Iga Clan healers immediately went to work on him, but once it was reported that he’d been hit with an ice bullet, Danzo immediately came to see him. Hideki told the grandmaster everything that had happened to him. First, he explained his encounter with the old men, and the warning of Confidential’s plan to sell Iga Clan secrets. Then, he told him about the apparition that had suddenly become a solid person and attacked him.
Hideki healed just fine over the next few days with advanced chi healing techniques, but his tale of that night became a source of great concern for Danzo. These concerns came to a head when the samurai superhero Musashi showed up at the Temple with his protégé Yoshi. The samurais and the ninjas had a long, complicated history that included lots of bloodshed, but on this day Musashi had not come to fight. In fact, he and Yoshi were accompanied by the heroic super soldier Lt. Rashard Bonds. Their purpose for being there was to recruit Danzo and the Iga Clan to help with an impending doom prophesied by the Zhibdean leader Hosho, and to fight against evil businessman and criminal mastermind, Edgar Lockhart.
Danzo was knowledgeable of the ancient monks and their history. He knew Hosho’s prophecy was of dire importance. He was also empathetic to the cause of bringing Lockhart down. However, Hideki’s adventure a few nights earlier had brought a pressing set of priorities to the forefront. First, they would have to intercept Confidential before he could sell the Iga Clan secrets to the Yakuza; and then they would have to deal with the ancient evil presence of dangerous entities called ghost orphans.
Hideki had encountered the most lethal ghost orphan of them all, Virginia Ice, and the fact that she had been spotted in New Japan was an omen that could not be ignored. Danzo had first battled ghost orphans over two hundred years ago when a large number of them arrived in old Japan. The human-wraiths had enlisted the violent services of the Matsuzaki Yakuza family, in order to work toward solidifying an evil empire of sorts. With his country in danger of being overrun by the ghastly beings, and the sanctity of his people hanging in the balance, Danzo and other ninja were able to team up with the descendants of a family of noble assassins – known as The Seven Families – who were specially equipped to hunt down and slay the orphans. Together they were able to eventually snuff out the threat. The victory, however, came at great cost, as several members of the Seven Families, as well as a large number of ninja, lost their lives.
A number of ghost orphans were destroyed as well, but the wraith that inhabited the body of Virginia Ice had survived. Danzo was aware of the battles between the orphans and the assassins who hunt them through all these years, but now with Virginia Ice’s appearance in New Japan, he knew it was time for him to join the war once again.
Danzo assigned one of his most trusted warriors, Faceless, the job of intercepting Confidential. Lt. Rashard Bonds and Musashi agreed to assist in that mission, as Lou looked to form a partnership with the Iga Clan, and Musashi looked to establish good faith with his mortal enemies, and an end to their rivalry. Yoshi reluctantly joined them as well. Meanwhile, the supreme ninja himself began prepping a group of elite troops to go after Virginia Ice and the ghost orphans.
For the first time in his life, there was finally a group that Hideki wanted to be a part of.