The ninth episode of Deep of Muscle.
The following is a fan-translation of the Japanese content. 
The dramatic story of a lifelong promise, and unbreakable bond, between childhood companions: Black Hole and Pentagon.
The 4D Killer Combo is a tag-team consisting of Black Hole and Pentagon, who participated together in the Universal Chojin Tag Tournament. Black Hole acts as the team-leader, with his rare ability to travel through space, without concern as to the law of physics, and can appear and disappear at will from the shadows. On the other hand, Pentagon is a master of aerial attacks, and can use the wings on his back to glide and dance through the air; he also has the special ability of time-control.
They are a miraculous combination of two that can control time and space, making them capable of terrifying attacks and the proud name of the "four-dimensional killers".
It was unfortunate that they could not make use of their full potential. They were defeated by the Muscle Brothers - a tag-team of Kinnikuman and Kinnikuman Great - in the Universal Tag-Team Tournament. Despite having lost in the first round, they are an outstanding combination that stood a fair chance of victory based on their fighting abilities.
It is interesting to consider their origins. Black Hole is a Devil Chojin, while Pentagon is a Justice Chojin. They may look similar, but they are from completely opposing backgrounds. So, the question is: why did two men with such different moral codes form a tag-team?
There is a little known fact that the two share a deep and unconditional bond . . . in fact, they share a biological relationship to one another, and have known each other since their childhood.
With that in mind, it makes the relationship between the two an interesting one, but it does bring up a few questions. If they were born with such a close consanguinity, why did the schism between justice and evil occur? Why did then decide to join forces again after so long? There is a secret drama stemming from a childhood promise, which only those two could understand.
This story is about why the 4D Killer Combo formed, looking back on the shared life of the two friends, family, and playmates.
There is a special ring prepared at the base of Mount Fuji.
It is the ring where the first round of the Universal Chojin Tag Tournament will be held, and where the most awe-inspiring tag-team of the world - no, the universe - has just ended their match.
The two chojin fighters are completely fatigued, unable to stand up and only able to lie down. They are side-by-side, but facing in opposite directions. They are both on their backs, with both light and darkness lying prone.
The name of the dark chojin is Black Hole. The name of the light chojin is Pentagon. The two of them joined this tournament as the “4D Killer Combo”, but they have sadly lost the first round.
Despite making the Muscle Brothers suffer, they were knocked out for the Muscle Docking, which would later go down as a famous tag-team technique. In fact, it is such a good technique that they still haven’t recovered even several minutes after the end of the match. They still can’t stand up.
While down, they were still conscious. The body may be broken, but there lingered surprise and pride of experiencing such legendary power, and - beyond that - the humiliation of defeat and the soul-crushing loss of their ambitions. The conflicting feelings were battling in their minds, and this kept them down even more than their physical wounds.
They stared up at the ceiling, while Black Hole whispered to Pentagon:
“Hey, Pentagon. W-Why are we lying down like this?
Pentagon whispers back in the same tone:
“Well, Bro. Far beyond the ceiling above us, there lies the legendary trophy to which we swore we would pull out from where it lies in Tournament Mountain …”
“I never thought our dreams would be broken so soon … life’s a bitch.”
Black Hole shut up after that. The silence lingered for a long time, until Pentagon let loose a small sigh and said to Black Hole:
“Do you remember when we swore we would become the strongest? Do you remember, Black?”
“Well, of course … that’s not something I’d forget, is it?”
“We were both so young back then. It was a simple time; “Justice Chojin”, “Devil Chojn” … those things were nothing to do with us.”
“Huh, it’s hard to believe I was ever that young. We were just kids when we made that promise, and we were so fearless back then.”
“Definitely. Now we’re stronger than we were. Yes, stronger …”
When did the two cousins first meet? Were they always so close? That is something even they do not know. It’s true that they played together as children, but that was just as relatives and not as best friends.
No, at the beginning, when they first met, there was an instantaneous deep and profound connection to one another, but - to understand their relationship - we first must understand the long history of their clan.
The Black Hole Clan is from Bermuda. No, to be exact, they were originally extra-terrestrials. They inhabited an unknown space, beyond Earth. Each time their clan wishes to come to Earth, they open a special wormhole to travel, but it was the Bermuda Islands where they arrive and where they leave …
To those familiar with the occult, you may be familiar with what is called: “The Devil’s Triangle”. It is a mysterious area where ships and aircrafts disappear, and its waters are located in a triangle-shape off the tip of the Floridian Peninsula (United States), Puerto Rico, and the Bermuda Islands (Atlantic Ocean). It is where odd phenomena are commonplace. It has become a place of legend, but the reality is that the phenomena is caused by the Black Hole clan’s wormholes. This is a secret only known to the academics of the chojin world.
The Pentagon clan are from near Seattle, which is located on the western coast of the United States. The ancestors of this clan, however, came from a different dimension deep in outer space, which is the same place as the Black Hole clan. The two clans formed a schism, many years ago, and the Pentagon clan moved to Earth, where they continue living even in modern times.
Despite their move to Earth, the Pentagon clan did not cut all connections; they remained in touch with the head family, who resided in the other dimension in outer-space. They may live in different places, but they often interact with one another and keep a good relationship; so good, in fact, that they often intermarry between their clans. It is thus only natural that Black Hole and Pentagon were related to one another as cousins.
The two families may have a good relationship, but there has been a difference in appearances that has been caused by evolution over time, due to their living in vastly different environments. Evolution is an interesting phenomenon.
All of the head clan, who continued to live in a different dimension, have jet-black skin, but of the branch clan - who moved to Earth - they have experienced changes in their skin-tone after the second and third generations. The current generation is the fifth generation, which Pentagon belongs, and their pigmentation has faded due to evolution to a pure white skin.
It is because of this that when one family visited another, the humans around them - and other members of the clans - were able to tell on a mere glance to which clan the family membered belonged.
The downside is that these obvious superficial differences have led to discrimination. The leaders of the head family, and the leaders of the branch family, remain friendly and are equal in status to one another, and both have taught never to discriminate based on appearance (which they have deemed immoral), but this did not stop growing negative sentiments from the head family towards the members of the branch family.
It is believed that the branch family are criminals, ones who have abandoned their extra-terrestrial home and mothers, all to enjoy a life on Earth. If a quarrel ever occurs between children of the two clans, the adult of the head clan would blame the child of the branch clan and scream:
“Weakling! Coward! Good-for-nothing!”
On the flipside, the branch family often viewed the head family as being a crude, primitive and warlike people. They often mocked and derided what they saw as being barbaric and primitive men …
The branch family were pacifists. They matured on their new world, developing a sense of culture, and were at odds with the ignorant and violent teachings of the head family. They refused to rise to the baseless taunts and provocations from such barbarians …
It is due to this alone, that they were able to maintain a good relationship on the surface and repress any antagonism, even when those antagonistic feelings still brewed beneath the surface.
The two families continued to interact with one another, as they believed that - morally - it was the best cause to pre-empt any potential conflict and eliminate any ill will to one another. Even though they despised each other with all their might, they continued to visit one another. They would go back and forth between each other’s residences, while creating opportunities to meet.
This meant that while Black Hole and Pentagon were cousins of similar ages, that their childhood together was awkward and uncomfortable due to the strained relationships between their clans.
It was around the time when both Black Hole and Pentagon were 12 years old, that the relationship between the two - (who were “more than acquaintances, but less than friends”) - dramatically changed .
It happened on the same day that the branch family, to which Pentagon belonged, was due to visit the other dimension in space, which was the home of the head family. It was part of a regular series of visits.
Pentagon was an only child, thus always very bored, and he visited the other dimension very often from a very young age, but - in all honesty - he always hated those visits … the only cousin of his age was Black Hole. There was no one else to talk with, but Black Hole would always go off to other places alone, even though Pentagon had travelled so far to visit them. It was like Black Hole wanted nothing to do with him.
It wasn’t as though Pentagon wanted to talk to him either, but without him there was no one else his age to talk to …
The atmosphere was always so gloomy, and it caused him great distress to have to abide by the rules of that clan. If he could endure for just a few hours, though, he could return to the beauty that was Earth.
The trouble happened when Pentagon went outside for a walk, as he sought for any kind of distraction. He was strolling through a public park, when he noticed a big fight. There were three black chojin, ganging up on one smaller black chojin, and they were badly beating him up.
“I guess it’s true; the head family are truly barbaric.”
That was what he thought as he tried to pass them by, but an awful realisation dawned upon him and his eyes went wide in shock. The chojin being beaten was none other than his cousin: Black Hole!
“What should I do? This is awful!”
Pentagon couldn’t just turn a blind eye. He hurriedly approached them!
── To be continued
Pentagon looked again at the unfolding situation, feeling quite upset.
Black Hole was always so unfriendly to him, and he really didn’t like the guy, but – at the same time – this was his cousin. He was also the only person the same age as him in this extra-dimensional space. It was true that Black Hole may not have been nice to him, but pride could not let him walk away. There was also three of those guys. If it were a one-on-one fight, maybe it would be fair game, but only a coward would fight someone three-on-one.
“Damn it! He’s such a bothersome bastard!”
After spitting out those words, Pentagon spread his wonderful wings and rushed into the fray. He scooped up Black Hole and soared into the heavens.
Black Hole struggled to make sense of the situation, and he was even more confused to learn that his cousin – Pentagon – was holding him.
“Oi, put me down! I could’ve taken ‘em all on my own! So hurry and put me down! Down!”
Below, however, the trio of dark chojin were screaming loudly at them. It was a stroke of luck that they didn’t seem able to fly, so they were unable to reach Pentagon and Black Hole, and this seemed to anger them beyond reason. Once he put Black Hole down, as he demanded, Black Hole flailed like an octopus in an attempt to get back to the fight.
“Hey, Black, cool your jets! Let’s go to that mountaintop for now.”
With that said, Pentagon ignored Black Hole’s demands, and – holding him close – spread his wings to fly to the mountaintop all the way in the distance. He flew all the way to the general area, and found a large enough space to land and put down Black Hole. Black Hole seemed to have calmed down at last. Since it was an emergency, they had been briefly united together as one, but - now that things were quiet – it was awkward again between them.
“Tch, that was kind of embarrassing,” said Black Hole.
It was difficult to know what to say to one another. Pentagon was concerned by what he saw, and he just hoped that Black Hole wouldn’t sneer and pout and insult him for what he was about to say, but he needed to be direct and get to the crux of the matter.
“Black, I know you might not want to hear this, but . . . it seems like you’re being bullied . . .”
“No way! Don’t be so stupid, you bastard!”
Black Hole vehemently denied it with all his might.
“Those are three brothers called the Bermuda III; I guess you’d call them the neighborhood bullies, they’re in charge of the kids in this extra-dimensional space. They’re not just brothers; they’re triplets, so they’re all the same age.”
“Hmm, well, all three looked just like you, Black. I really don’t get why all people in the head family are like that . . .”
“Are you blind or something?! You’re totally wrong! That’s insane; I’m nothing like those horrible guys!”
It was hard to make sense of his thick dialect, but the sense of pure self-confidence was clear as soon as Black Hole denounced any kind of resemblance or similarity to the Bermuda III.
Pentagon fought the urge to point out that Black Hole’s protests were like the pot calling the kettle black, and instead bit his tongue, as he continued to ask questions in hope of changing topic.
“Sure, I guess I am blind. Sorry. Anyway, why were you fighting that trio of kids alone, Black?”
While waiting for an answer, Black Hole spat back:
“Sheesh, you ask a lot of questions! If you must know, those guys are beyond reason! . . . Those three brothers are famous around here, because they’re together like twenty-four seven. You even see them going to and from school together. They also always eat their lunch together. They even clean their rooms together.”
“That’s nice, isn’t it?”
“Yeah, but it started to get real weird. In the cafeteria, the three of them would eat their curry-and-rice off the same plate. They would confess their love to the same girl. The three of them even used the same toilet stall to do their business.”
“That’s so wrong.”
“It kept getting worse and worse, until now the three of them will beat up a guy if even just one of them doesn’t like him . . . all the other good kids who live around here got the shit kicked out of them by those three, and now it’s just me that is able to stand up to them.”
Black Hole crossed his arms. Pentagon had listened to the whole story, and now said:
“What the heck? That sounds absolutely awful.”
“Yeah, it’s awful, but what can you do? It’s too late for those guys, but they’re expecting me to overthrow those bullies as their last hope. The only thing is . . .”
“Those guys are a united front. I don’t think it’s just for show either. A group of three random friends just isn’t the same when it comes to facing the shared rage of three brothers. Oh, I should just give up . . . if only I had a brother, too . . .”
Black Hole bore an expression of deep regret, but now his eyes sparkled and shone bright on Pentagon, as he smiled warmly and called out:
“Oh, that’s it”
“Eh . . .? What’s it . . .?”
“You can be my brother!”
“Huh? Me? Your brother?”
The large hole of Black Hole’s face gazed into the pentacle of Pentagon’s face, who sat before him. The two thought on matters for a long time, until Pentagon rushed out in denial:
“No, no, no, no! No way, no way, no way! I’m a pacifist, I can’t fight!”
Black Hole refused to relent:
“Nope! I’m going to give you a crash course on how to fight, and you’ll be my valued partner! The only reason you can’t fight is because you guys in the branch family are too stubborn; it’s no wonder the guys in the head family mock you so much!”
“Don’t badmouth my father! We’re really strong if we fight, but we don’t just fight for no reason! We’re different from you barbarians in this backwater dimension!”
“Ha, so you say! Then you can start by defeating me, wimp!”
Black Hole struck Pentagon without any provocation. Pentagon hurried to put his hand to his face, as he touch the pentacle on his face to activate his tremendous technique, and cried out:
“Stop the Time!”
There followed a clicking sound, and Black Hole – who had been about to hit again – suddenly stopped.
By the time Black Hole realized what was happening, Pentagon was behind him. Black Hole was astonished; it seemed to him that Pentagon had teleported behind him.
“Hey, what’re you doing?” Black Hole asked.
“Well, my dad told me not to tell anyone, but I guess you’re not just anyone. Our family can make the pentacles on our face stand out a little.”
It was then that the pentacle on Pentagon’s face popped out a little, in a three-dimensional manner.
“So,” said Pentagon. “If I rotate it a little, like this . . .”
Pentagon rotated the pentacle, at which point two flying birds stopped midair before them.
“So this is ‘Stop the Time’. It’s a technique to – well – stop time.”
Pentagon continued to explain to an astonished Black Hole:
“Not only that, but if I adjust the angle just right . . .”
This time, the two birds started to instantly go backwards!
“This is the Chronos Change. I can even make two different objects swap places; it’s just that good.”
Black Hole was so scared that he turned white as a sheet, as he muttered:
“Hey, are you the only one? . . . Can all of the branch family do this . . .?”
“Of course they can! In fact, my dad’s even more awesome than me!”
This was a technique kept secret by the branch family. It was true that the head family also had mysterious abilities, such as the ability to freely manipulate space, and this power was possible to anyone in the head family that had a hole in their head. They were all able to form a wormhole around the hole, and that’s partly why the branch family – whose holes were filled in – were mocked, as it was seen as a huge disadvantage.
But in reality, the filled-in holes provided a different advantage: they were able to manipulate time instead of space.
After a long explanation, Black Hole finally understood.
“Well, the leaders of your family know our secret, which is why the leaders of both our families try to keep things friendly and avoid ever making trouble for one another.”
Black Hole felt a new revelation dawning upon him:
“So that’s why the leaders of the head family badmouth you, because they know your secret, but the truth is that you guys aren’t weak lame-asses after all. You were able to fly high in the sky to help me escape, and able to stop time to prevent me from attacking you . . . I guess we have more in common than I thought.”
“Huh? What do we have in common?”
“I mean, you guys evolved with a focus on defence instead of offence, and protecting people instead of hurting people. That’s why you have a gentle and peaceful personality. On the other hand, we’re a group of chojin all about the offence and hurting. It’s why I’m always quick to lash out, which I guess probably would look barbaric to someone like you.”
It was a pretty fair point, and Pentagon was impressed by the logic.
“That sounds about right,” said Pentagon. “You’re pretty smart, Black!”
“Yeah, I always get the best grades out of the class!”
Black Hole confidently pushed out his chest and emphasised the ‘BH’ insignia upon it, as he continued:
“That’s why everyone expects me to defeat Bermuda III. So, let me ask you again . . . if we combine your defensive power, and my offensive power, we could easily defeat them even 2 on 3 . . . so why won’t you team up with me and let us defeat them together?”
When he spoke so deliberately, without rushing his words, he was a truly charming guy. Before Pentagon had no interest in this boy named Black Hole, but now his interest was certainly piqued. In response to the request, he said:
“Okay, sure. I was planning on going home today, but I’ll ask my dad if I can stay a little longer. In the meantime, let’s work together to defeat them!”
“Alright, let’s go!”
Black Hole and Pentagon were both 12 years old, and this shared struggle was the start of the 4D Killer Combo.
── To be continued
Thus, Black Hole and Pentagon honed their skills and perfected their tag-team, by continuously engaging in special training with one another. Finally, the day of the fated match arrived.
“Oi, Bermuda III! You three have tormented me all this time! But today, I’m going to beat you guys to a bloody pulp!”
Bermuda III mocked Black Hole in their usual manner:
“Who do you think you are, Black Hole? Good grief, no matter how much you get beat, you always come back for more; I almost admire your spirit. How many times is it going to take for you to learn that you can’t beat the three of us alone?”
“Huh, well, I realise now that I can’t do it alone ,” declared Black Hole with a fearless smile. “That’s why I’ve chosen to challenge you as part of a tag-team. I finally found a partner that with me is just as strong as you three combined!”
The partner was nowhere to seen.
Bermuda III laughed at Black Hole again; laughing and laughing as they mocked:
“Where is this guy then? Are you so wound up that you’ve finally just snapped? Hahahaha!”
“Heh, I’ll show you idiots. Hey, Pentagon! Come on; here we go!”
That phrase was all that was needed; Pentagon suddenly jumped out from the hole in Black Hole’s face, as he crossed through the space-time barrier!
“Take this! Moonsault Attack!”
The rotating chojin went first in their attack, throwing himself at one his enemies and took him off-guard.
“I can keep going! Look, Black! I’ll pound on them like with my Space Shuttle!”
The wings on his back flapped fast and allowed him to fly, and this allowed Pentagon to rain down drop-kicks on the remaining two from all angles! After a successful first round of blows, he quickly made a retreat; he spread wide his wings and soared above. He landed next to Black Hole.
“Let me introduce you to my new partner,” said Black Hole. “This is the guy who’s going to help me defeat you; my beloved cousin . . . Pentagon!”
“Nice to meet you three again,” added Pentagon. “Long time no see!”
The Bermuda III looked to Pentagon, which finally brought back memories of that day. This was the white-winged chojin that rescued Black Hole when he was in most need. The man that seemed to be the leader of the Bermuda III quickly spoke to Pentagon:
“I’d recognise you anywhere. You’re a member of the branch family, right?”
“That’s right! I’m Pentagon; I currently live in a country called ‘America’ back on Earth. It’s a pleasure to see you again!”
“Ha, the pleasure’s all ours! I figured you’d ran away last time to force a stalemate. It’s just like you losers in the branch family to turn tail and run, and if there’s one thing I hate more than you branch bastards, it’s assholes who have to rely on you for help! I’ll crush you. I’ll crush you, you brutes!”
Pentagon refused to acknowledge the threat, as he replied to Bermuda III:
“The only ‘brutes’ are those obsessed with pride, like you and those incompetent fools in the head family, but Black is different . . . he’s simply splendid. He was the first to see the true value of the branch family, and it should be a guy like Black who carries on the name of the head family in future. That’s why I decided to team up with Black against you!”
“Tch! Those are just the boasts of a wannabe-intellectual from the branch family! You’re just hiding your true nature, but I’ll expose you for the weakling you are!” Angry and ready to use his secret technique, the leader of the Bermuda III bellowed out: “Time to act! Go for a Gamma Formation, guys!”
Even while he was still bellowing his command, the other two members of the Bermuda III lined up behind him in a three-person position. The holes in their faces enlarged and connected. It seemed that something truly amazing was about to happen!
“Let’s go! Bermuda III Killer Technique: Triple Black Hole Suction!”
Just as he said that, a tremendous force of gravity emanated from their combined hole and sucked everything in the vicinity inside! It provided a strong gust of wind, which drew everything inside the hole regardless of its size or shape.
“Hahaha, how’d you like this suction power? If you two are such good friends, you shouldn’t mind being thrown several thousand light-years away in the distance! You’ll never come back!”
Black Hole remained calm. He activated a shadow-clone, which was his speciality, and then split that clone into ten other clones. Each of the clones was sucked into the giant hole of the three men, and only when the speed and momentum of those clones reached their peak did Black Hole give the signal:
“Okay, now, Pentagon!”
“Gotcha, Black! Stop the Time!”
The suction by those three men stopped, but the movement of the ten shadow-clones did not stop! They all maintained the perfect position ready for an attack, as Black Hole cried out:
Since the day of Bermuda III’s defeat, it was once again peaceful in the extra-dimensional neighbourhood. The fact that Black Hole and Pentagon had defeated them, despite being two against three, had gone down as something of legend among the local children. They were a big hit overnight.
And something else changed on that day, too.
Due to the talents of Pentagon, there was no longer any discrimination from the children of the head family against the children of the branch family. This was a great relief for Pentagon. It was worth hanging in there all that time with courage and strength.
The defeat of the Bermuda III created a power vacuum among all the bad kids of the head family, and soon Black Hole occupied the number one spot among them. As for Pentagon, after several long days, it was finally time for him to return to Earth . . .
“I really don’t want to leave all my new friends, but I’m sure you can keep things running well here, Black. I’m sure you’ll be even stronger by my next visit, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how you - and everyone else - has changed on my next visit!”
“You can trust in me! Have a safe journey to Earth, but don’t forget me!”
“Of course! I could never forget you or the memories we made!”
“Good, because we’re best friends now!”
Black Hole and Pentagon were devastated to part ways and return to their usual lives, but they kept their promise of never forgetting one another and reuniting with one another.
It has been two years since that day . . .
Pentagon has grown up into a more mature 14 year-old boy on Earth. It was time for the regular family-reunion between the branch family and the head family.
The family reunion . . . that brought back memories. Pentagon had waited desperately for this day to come for two years now, and he thought about his time in the other-dimension every single day. He wondered:
“Are Black, Bermuda III, and everyone else in the family doing well?"
The gate between the dimensions could not be opened without official permission, and so Pentagon could not simply just travel there whenever he wanted to play or socialise. It meant that he was no longer in touch with those in the head family, and why he was so excited for the opportunity to catch up with them.
Before he left, Pentagon thought back on his memories of the past two years, while he wondered about how much the others may have changed: “Even though Black is bloody stubborn, he’s also a pretty earnest guy, so he could easily have made student president at school. Then again, he’s never been one to play by the rules, hahaha.”
With such thoughts in mind, he crossed through the gate into the warmly-remembered other dimension. It was on immediate arrival that someone begged for help:
“Y-You . . . help me! I’ll be killed!”
The boy had the dark skin of someone from the head family, and he seemed approximately the same sort of age as Pentagon. It was when Pentagon looked behind the boy that he saw them; he was being chased by a trio of boys with equally dark skin, and he was stunned to see them as they came closer from the distance towards him.
“Are – Are those guys the Bermuda III?! They’re – They’re not up to their old tricks again, are they?”
The three of them suddenly noticed Pentagon. They stopped and cheerfully said:
“Is – Is that Mr. Pentagon? Long time, no see! It’s us, the Bermuda III!”
Pentagon smiled politely, as he said in a stunned voice: “It’s been a while, hasn’t it? You seem different. Are things okay?”
“Actually, things are going great! I’m sorry we were so rude to you back then, but – now that Mr Black Hole is in charge – our organisation is growing more and more by the day. It’s all very exciting!
“Huh? An organisation? . . . what kind of organisation?”
“Well, I guess you could call us ‘gangsters’, but really it’s more like a gathering of dangerous kids in a criminal ring that even the adults can’t control. So don’t worry, it’s all good!”
While he pondered over their words, the boy that had asked for help said:
“Huh! So you must be the legendary Pentagon. Hi there!
The three boys – who formed the Bermuda III – crowded the boy again and threatened: “You bastard! Don’t you dare address Mr Pentagon so informally! You’re just shoplifting scum!”
The boy was already badly beaten by the Bermuda III, and the idea that he could be hurt any more was more than Pentagon could swallow. He was unsure whether to stop the abuse or not; he was just confused. What happened to this city?
“Hey, Bermuda III,” said Pentagon. “I’d really like to see Black again; can you take me?”
They stopped their fists, which had been pummelling the boy before them, and answered with a smile: “Sure thing! Of course we can! Commander Black is going to be ecstatic! Let’s go! Let’s go!” Bermuda III turned to the boy and added: “Oh, I’ll let you go because of urgent business, but you mess up again and we’ll kill you; bear that in mind!”
“Hyaaaa,” screamed the boy.
Commander . . . what did they mean?
Despite all the questions going around and around in his head, Pentagon was lead by Bermuda III to one of their “gangster” hideouts within the city.
── To be continued
The “hideout” turned out to be a small cave on the outskirts of the cityscape.
“The Commander is in the back,” said Bermuda III. “Please go alone from this point onward.”
“Why aren’t you coming too?”
“I can’t; the Commander wants to talk to you alone, Mr Pentagon.”
Pentagon entered the cave, while Bermuda III stayed at the entrance. The atmosphere inside the cave was gloomy and oppressive, and - the closer he got to the very end – the worse that depressing feeling bore down upon him. It was definitely a cave that most people would not think to approach. He eventually came across Black Hole. Black Hole sat cross-legged and alone, with his back to Pentagon.
“Hey, Black,” said Pentagon. “Long time no see, huh?”
Black Hole snapped out of his meditation on hearing Pentagon’s voice. He slowly stood up straight, while he continued to face away from Pentagon, even as he said:
“I thought it was about time for your visit, Pentagon. What did you think when you saw me? . . . were you surprised?”
“Yeah, I was. I don’t know what to say. To start with, I can’t even believe what’s happening here, let alone that there’s now this big criminal gang with you as its commander-in-chief. What the hell is going on?”
“As you probably know, it was agreed that all the dregs and losers of the kids downtown would assemble under just one organised group. The leader of that group is me.”
Pentagon trembled with anger, as he spat back at Black Hole:
“Why?! You were a good guy, one with a strong sense of justice, when I last saw you! I believed in you, and I worked alongside you, so . . . why?”
“You were too naïve. The world can’t spin on good-will alone.”
Black Hole had been facing forwards this entire time, but now finally looked back. The expression he once wore was one filled with passion and expression, but now that hole in his head was just empty.
“Pentagon, you and I once defeated the cruel Bermuda III, just two years ago, and we were treated as heroes by everyone. I really did think we did good at the time.” Black Hole gave a distant and faraway look. “But then you returned to Earth. For some stupid reason, the children in town started to grow restless and immoral. They engaged in petty fights, shoplifting, bullying, running away, alcoholism, smoking, and glue-sniffing. Finally, they started dealing drugs. Did you expect any of that?”
“That’s awful . . . why did that happen?”
“I guess in the olden days that sort of behaviour stood out like a sore thumb, but things soon changed after that day we beat Bermuda. I guess without someone to dominant them into submission, they just let their inhibitions run wild and lost self-restraint. They just started doing whatever they wanted. That’s when I started to worry. By doing what we did back then, did we help create this degenerate society?”
“That’s impossible! No way would that happen just because –”
“That was when I grew to understand. Justice stems from power. In this world, we must be ruled by an absolute power!”
“Black . . .”
“Sadly, that sort of power is the only kind that the idiots understand; they only obey when it comes to fear and force. That’s why I sprung into action. I would rise to the occasion. I would be the necessary evil! That is why I created the organisation that exists today.” Black Hole lowered his voice to a whisper: “But I’ve had enough of these petty games. It’s why I’m leaving today; I’m handing over the organisation to Bermuda III.”
“What do you mean?”
“Now I see the path that lies ahead of me. This town was so small that it was easy to exert my power, so that no one within it can escape my grasp. Now I want to embark on a journey to greater evils.”
“I guess you have your own ambitions, and your own way of doing things . . .”
“I just couldn’t bear to leave without telling you. I’ve been waiting all this time for you to come, and now that I’ve told you everything, I have nothing holding me back any more. Now it’s time for me to leave!”
Pentagon knew nothing that was said would change his mind, and so said the only thing he could:
“I understand. You seem to have given this a lot of thought, so I won’t stop you, but I still think that controlling people by force and fear is wrong. I won’t deny what happened here was awful, but I refuse to believe that all of the people here are inherently bad. I think there’s another way to make things better, and I’m going to do my best to find that way. So if you really have to go down the path of evil, I promise that I’ll become a top-notch Justice Chojin instead, one that everyone respects. I’ll change the world with goodness!”
“You’re still as enthralling as ever.” Black Hole laughed with his hands on his hips. “Still, I understand. Let’s both follow our own paths, and then one day we’ll meet on the big stage, far from some grotty cave in a dead-end town. There’s nothing left to say now, but I’m sure we’ll one day fight together.”
“Yeah, I truly can’t wait to see you again someday soon!”
“I swear that we’ll meet again. Goodbye for now!”
With that, Black Hole turned his back once more. The two were truly two sides to the same coin, but for now there was no choice except to part ways . . .
It was almost ten years since that day . . .
Pentagon had grown into a talented chojin, one who was selected as the American representative for the Chojin Olympics, and served as a beacon of hope for all Justice Chojin everywhere. However, despite winning in the preliminaries, he yielded a disappointing position among the top eight finalists.
He couldn’t sleep that night after his defeat, but it wasn’t due to the injuries obtained by Warsman or the shame that he bore in his heart. It was that he could not stop apologising to the childhood companion that he held close in his heart: "Black, I'm sorry. I couldn't keep my promise to you ..."
Only a few weeks after his unfortunate defeat, an incident occurred in the chojin world. The Seven Devil Chojin issued a challenge against the winner of the Chojin Olympics: Kinnikuman. Pentagon could not hide his surprise at the sight of one in particular:
“Black! It’s Black!”
If only Pentagon had won the Chojin Olympics, he would be the one to fight them. That thought only made his defeat all the more unbearable, especially as now he was nothing but a loser. While Black Hole had achieved his goal of becoming the ultimate evil, Pentagon stood no chance at fighting him. Even though he could not fight against Black Hole, he watched from the audience and whispered:
“I’m sorry . . . I want nothing more than to fight you, if only it were possible!”
He really wanted to see how much Black Hole had grown. He wanted to fight against him and experience those changes firsthand, but he lacked any right or reason to be in the ring. That mortifying realisation tormented him, as words of apology spilled from his lips, but it did not matter.
Black Hole lost in his match against Kinnikuman.
Pentagon felt his heart torn in two; he was conflicted. He should have supported Kinnikuman as a Justice Chojin, but the promise he made to Black Hole – that each would be the best in their respective roles – was still boiling away within his chest . . . he wanted to see how great Black Hole had become, but the reality was bittersweet. He lost to Kinnikuman. Black Hole had not reached his goal, but neither had Pentagon. Added to that, Pentagon was honestly a little relieved, as he thought:
“He and I are still sharing the same path, so maybe we can walk along that path together . . .”
Pentagon may still have been a little disappointed, but – after that match – he went to the waiting room of the Devil Chojin. He waited and waited, but there was no sign that Black Hole would return. Instead, a chojin dressed in an Egyptian headdress passed by the dressing room, and Pentagon summoned the courage to wave him over. The man went over to him and asked:
“The match was over ages ago; what are you doing here?”
“Hey, you’re one of the Devil Chojin, aren’t you?” Pentagon asked. “I’m an old friend of Black Hole, but he hasn’t returned yet . . . do you know where he is now?”
The Egyptian chojin seemed upset on hearing that and asked back: “You know Black Hole?”
“Ah, is there something wrong?”
“No . . . well . . . I don’t know what to say, but –”
The Egyptian chojin was holding his tongue, as he struggled to answer.
“What’s wrong?” Pentagon asked. “What happened to Black?!”
“Hey, it’s okay. I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you. It’s just that we Devil Chojin vowed to win this battle at all costs, so anyone who loses faces the wrath of General Devil. There’s no two ways about it, and now Black Hole has been defeated in battle, so . . .”
“So that means Black -?!”
“He went right after the match to receive his punishment, yeah . . .”
At these words, the Egyptian grimaced. Pentagon immediately left the venue, while he flew about the skies in a desperate search for Black Hole, all the while the desperately wishing to see him again.
“Black, what have you done?!” Pentagon cried. “I’m on my way! I’ll go to the highest heights for a bird’s eye view, and I’ll not stop flying until I find you! Don’t die on me! I’m begging you . . . I’m begging you to stay alive, so I can talk to you one last time!”
Eventually, he found a jet-black chojin collapsed in a western forest; he was badly hurt. He scooped Black Hole into his arms and spoke to him in a tone filled with ecstatic devotion:
“Hey, Black! It’s me! Can you understand me? It’s Pentagon!”
“P-Pentagon . . . I hoped we’d meet again when I came to Earth . . . ha, it’s been a l-long time, hasn’t it? You always had the worst timing . . . I didn’t want you to see me so humiliated . . .!”
“Oh, you should be embarrassed! You’re still that same guy that wanted to go up the rungs of the evil ladder, and talked a lot of big talk before leaving; you act like that same greenhorn. But . . . I’m the same, too. I haven’t achieved my goals yet either. Maybe together we can achieve our goals, like in the olden days . . .”
“Hey, Pentagon . . . I have to go and take my punishment as a Devil Chojin. It’s the duty of one that sold his soul to Satan, and I’ll probably not make it back alive . . . but I hear rumours that chojin who die in their prime of life can be revived again, so long as they gain approval in the Chojin Graveyard. If that’s true . . . when I come back . . . can we start over again? Together?”
“Ah, I’d love to! Of course I’d want to! I promise to you here and now: as soon as you come back, we’re going to climb the ladder of the chojin world together, and we’ll reach the top as one!”
“Kakaka . . . you’re still a good man. Okay, we’ll say goodbye for now . . . I’ll definitely come back . . . I’ll come back . . .”
With that final word, Black Hole faded away into a different dimension, one in which the Great Demon King, Satan, was waiting for him.
Half a year later:
The two chojin – Pentagon and Black Hole – are lying side-by-side after the first round of the Universal Chojin Tag Tournament. They had reunited as promised, and formed a tag-team, only to be ruthlessly defeated once more. Black Hole stared up at the ceiling, as he said to Pentagon:
“Well, we lost again. I’m starting to get worried. How often are we going to lose like this?”
Pentagon looked up at the ceiling, as he whispered:
“Well, that’s obvious. We’ll keep losing until we finally win.”
"Oh, with this regret, I'm sure that next time ..."
"Oh ... for sure ..."
As the two fell slowly unconscious, they made again a new promise to each other . . .
- Deep of Muscle: 9