4. Machine Head

Trapped in the café, Priss finds herself at the mercy of the rogue waitress boomer, now hideously mutated beyond its original form. Without her hardsuit, Priss has no effective way to fight back, and finds herself relying on AD Police officers Leon and Daley to save her- that is, until the other Knight Sabers show up.

Reaching the scene, Linna and Nene prepare to take on the rogue boomer, but find it a lot faster and stronger than they expected. Despite this, Linna is determined to prove herself, and impresses even Sylia with her first assault on the boomer. However, while Linna may be ready for combat, her hardsuit is not; in short order she finds herself trapped in the boomer’s crushing embrace, with no power left in her hardsuit’s battery. The outcome seems inevitable- the reserve battery will open the suit, and an exposed Linna will be killed!

It looks like the Knight Sabers have finally messed up, and Leon and Daley decide to take the chance to take down a rogue boomer and reel in the troublesome vigilantes. With Linna caught in the crossfire, and Nene’s power insufficient to stop the boomer, it could be the end for the team….or maybe not. Having been told by Leon to leave the café, Priss met up with Sylia (waiting outside in the mobile pit) and suited up. Jumping into battle with her usual skill and strength, Priss punches into the boomer and crushes its core.

The boomer may be down, but the AD Police are still a problem. Leon and Daley want to arrest the Knight Sabers, but unfortunately for them, their fellow officers rush into the café and start shooting everywhere. In the smoky confusion, Nene, Linna and Priss are able to leave the scene and return to the mobile pit.

In the mobile pit, Linna is convinced that she has messed up her first battle and her chance to be a Knight Saber, but Nene and Sylia disagree. Even though they were impressed by her performance, Priss is not; a rookie like Linna should never have been sent into battle in the first place, and especially not with a malfunctioning hardsuit.

Later that day, Linna comes to Priss’ trailer to apologise. Priss was right- she should never have gone into battle untrained and unready. Linna explains that she was motivated by her excitement at becoming a Knight Saber, and her desire to help people. Priss seems unmoved, and Linna can’t help wondering why the rock singer would risk her life when she seems to care so little for the Sabers’ cause. Priss counters that maybe she just likes the danger, or the money- and after all, a “cause” is worthless without a clear goal. Linna does have at least one goal, however- she wants to replace Priss as the top fighter on the team.

Meanwhile, Sylia ponders thoughts and regrets of her own, until she is interrupted by a message from Nene. Nene has uncovered a secret group that has documented a list of boomer serial numbers. The list includes all the boomers which have gone rogue, and some which haven’t; could it be that these are the serial numbers of boomers which will go rogue in the future? It seems a likely hypothesis, but Sylia is unwilling to believe it. Surely her father’s boomer designs wouldn’t allow for such tampering?

But it could well be that Sylia is wrong, for at a nearby factory, another boomer is about to get a “makeover”. Two men have penetrated a secure area in the factory, and after disabling the boomer they find there, one of them takes a mysterious cylinder out of his pocket. Is he about to attempt the very tampering that Sylia believes is impossible?

Linna is determined to get back into shape for her next fight, and takes to the gym for some intensive training. Meanwhile, Priss finds herself in for an unwelcome surprise after her performance at the club. Preoccupied with the woman from the café, Leon has tracked her down, and seems interested in a chat- perhaps Priss could even thank him for saving her life earlier. Priss, however, has more important things to worry about. A rogue boomer has been detected at a factory, and both Priss and Leon have been called into action…