|Outlaw Star: 1st Star: Fire & Ice|
1st Star: Fire & Ice
|Outlaw Star Manga|
|English Title||1st Star: Fire & Ice|
|Trade Published by||Shueisha|
|Trade Release Date||August 1997|
Outlaw Star: 1st Star: Fire & Ice is the first of three collected volumes of the incomplete manga Outlaw Star, written and illustrated by Takehiko Itō. 1st Star: Fire & Ice spans chapters one through four of the then-serialized manga published in Ultra Jump magazine. 1st Star: Fire & Ice was originally published in September of 1996 and released in trade paperback format August 1997.
1st Star: Fire & Ice begins in medias res. Gene Starwind, Jim Hawking and Melfina come face to face with appears to be their first live battle with a fellow grappler ship on their "maiden voyage" aboard the Outlaw Star. Jim fears the worse will happen to them as they are untested in battle, however, a determined Gene tells his friend not to underestimate him. He goes on to say that they cannot be beaten until they become the most famous outlaws in the universe.
Chapter 1: Fire & Ice
Prior to the events of the Outlaw Star's maiden voyage, Gene wakes beside a beautiful woman asking him to stay over at her apartment. As he begins to flirt with her, he is interrupted by the sound of his partner-in-crime, Jim, banging on her door, warning him of approaching trouble. The man he killed six months ago, Wraith, has somehow come back from the dead and is looking to get even with Gene. Jim explains that Wraith was revived using cybernetics and has been calling him a "Space Cherry" all through time.
Angered by the news, Gene readies his Caster and gets dressed. He and Jim face Wraith outside the girl's apartment. Wraith attempts to belittle Gene's inexperience as a spacer against him, but Gene goads Wraith and the Liberty Bell gang into a rage and deflects their gunfire using a light shield.
When Gene finally opens fire on them using this double-barreled shotgun, he assumes they've been killed. However, Wraith and the Liberty Bell gang emerge from the smoke and Gene discovers his bullets have been replaced with fake rounds by the woman he slept with, Wraith's girlfriend. At a disadvantage, Gene and Jim run for their lives and cross paths with mysterious woman in an ally.
In the safety of their home, Starwind and Hawking, Jim and Gene recover from their embarrassing defeat at the hands of the Wraith and the Liberty Bell gang. Listening to police chatter on the radio, Jim overhears that Wraith and his gang were killed by an unidentified person. Jim speculates that space pirates may be behind what spurred on the incident with Wraith and his gang. No sooner than hearing the report, Gene and Jim are approached by a woman needing a bodyguard and nanotech parts. Despite their suspicions, Gene and Jim take the job and meet the woman outside the Virginia space port.
Gene and Jim realize too late that their client is the woman they met in the alley before and that she is being tracked by a group of killers. When Gene kills her hunters, she introduces herself as "Hilda".
Chapter 2: Night of the Sentinel
As more of Hilda's attackers approach, Jim tries to persuade Gene to run away from the situation. Gene refuses, knowing that if they run, they'll continued to be hunted by Hilda's enemies by association. As Gene continues to battle the killers, Jim tells Gene that he overheard a news report on their client, "Hot Ice Hilda", years ago.
After a long and drawn out battle with the Kei Pirate's foot soldiers, Gene and Jim reluctantly decide to help Hilda. She leads them to Mother Ranch 221, where she leads them into a seemingly vacant barn. As Gene demands to know what's going on, Hilda apologizes to her "treasure". Gene and Jim discover a young naked woman in a fetal position inside a giant suitcase. As they leave the farmlands, Hilda considers "rewarding" Gene with someone other than money. Hilda suggests that she take him to into space with her, an idea that frightens Gene. Hilda insists that Gene is more than capable to travel through space and that she was impressed by his skill when he took on Wraith and his gang. Gene insists that he's saving up the money to do so and Hilda promises to help him if he decides to come with her.
Chapter 3: Kaizoku
Gene, Jim and Hilda check into the Hotel Lovers Inn. As they prepare to stay the night, Gene becomes more and more fascinated by the "doll" inside the suitcase. Jim becomes concerned with Gene's interest in Hilda, especially after learning his friend has no money to pay for his hotel room, but decides to trust Gene regardless of the trouble they're likely to fall into. Once they're situated in their rooms, Gene and Hilda shower and get familiar with each other. As she prepares to sleep with him, Hilda reveals that both her arms have been badly damaged and use cybernetic elements.
Curious to know what she's up to, Gene calls her a "pirate", an identity Hilda does not deny or outright confirm. She tells him that she's come to retrieve her "Force". Hilda was forced down onto Sentinel III by the Kei Pirates and forced to abandon The Force in her drop ship. Back at Hawking and Starwind, Jim watches a video feed (captured by Fred Luo's Network) of Hilda's ship being perused by several Kei Pirate ships, and wonders what "Hot Ice Hilda" could be up to.
At the Virginia Space Port, the Kei Pirates, Soi Len, Roi Fong and the Swordsman, have successfully landed and disembarked from their ship. Outside their ship they are confronted by the group, the Eighth Evil Star. A woman named Suzuka tells them that she was ordered to bar them from leaving the space port for the town. However, she decides to allow them passage on the stipulation that should they fail to return at dusk, she will kill them. As they Kei Pirates leave, a member of the Eighth Evil Star demands to know why she let me leave. Suzuka tells them that she didn't like the orders she told to give them, and that the Kei Pirates's command ship, The Itsuhou is well within Evil Star's ASSB weaponry's range.
Sometime after they've slept together, Hilda is working on her arms and notices Gene is awake. Gene is mildly frustrated when Hilda decides not to join him back in bed and appears to have within drawn from him. When he notices the suitcase where the "doll" sleeps, Hilda suggests that he's become fond of her. She explains that the girl is an innocent that they can introduce to the pleasures of the world, as that is her "use". Gene tells her he has little interest in "pure women" and much rather sleep with women like Hilda. When Hilda questions how long he'll want someone like her, Gene tells her "as long as they're together" and promises to protect her "treasure".
Their conversation is abruptly interrupted by the arrival of the Kei Pirates, who somehow tracked Hilda's exact location to the Hotel Love Inn. Hilda and Gene get dressed make for an escape route. When the Kei Pirate's foot soldier's enter their hotel room, they assume Hilda and Gene left the "treasure" behind. Gene detonates the bomb they left in the room and fights the rest of the foot soldiers off as he attempts to escape with Hilda and the treasure.
Chapter 4: Caster
As Gene fights off the Kei Pirate's foot soldiers, Hilda watches from a distance, impressed by his skill. She cannot aid Gene as one of her arms are non-functional. She reflects that her arranged meeting with Gwen Khan did not go as planned because of the pirates, but she intends on having "the last laugh".
With the Kei Pirate's foot soldiers defeated, Gene assumes the intervention of the police will be enough to stop them. Hilda, however, tells him that in order to stop the foot soldiers they have to kill the Tao Masters controlling them. Gene doesn't believe her until the Kei Pirate's use Tao magic to join them on the rooftop of the hotel. Roi Fong, the Tao Master of lightning, attacks Gene using his magic and knocks him off his feet. The Tao Master confronts Hilda and tells her she cannot escape them.
He signals for the "Ultra Misleader" and Gene is attacked by the swordsman Tao Master. Gene barely holds his own against the swordsman as Hilda struggles to dodge the attacks of Soi Lin. When the swordsman appears to have defeated Gene, Roi Fong accuses Hilda breaking their "ban". Hilda, however, states that the ban's stipulation was that no pirate was to touch another's treasure after they've claimed it. Insulted, Soi Len, takes on the task of killing Hilda, believing she'll be unable to defeat three Tao Masters.
Hilda, however, believes as long as she is still armed, she'll be able to kill anyone who threatens to kill her. As she prepares to fight, Gene recovers from the swordsman's blow and demands that Hilda let him take care of the pirates, determined to earn his bodyguard fee. All three Tao Masters are baffled by his survival, Roi Fong declaring that Gene's internal system should've ruptured after the swordsman's last attack. As the swordsman prepares to kill Gene, he taunts the weakened gunslinger and asks if he intends to cry. Gene continues to put on a tough front for another moment before he actually begins to cry about the pain he's in.
When he falls over, the swordsman raises his weapon to land the killing blow. He is taken by surprise, however, when Gene draws his Caster and opens fire on them. The blast from the gun is enough to kill the swordsman and take a significant amount of the rooftop surface with it. When the smoke clears a tattered trail of where the swordsman was blown off the rooftop and a grinning Gene is left behind. Rei Fong and Soi Len are astonished by the strength of attack, while Hilda only beginning to realize Gene used a Caster.
- ↑ Itō, Takehiko (September 20, 1996). 1. "Fire & Ice". Ultra Jump. Outlaw Star (in Japanese) (Shueisha) (7): pp. 3–48.
- ↑ アウトロースター 1st STAR (ヤングジャンプコミックス・ウルトラ)/Outlaw Star 1st STAR (Young Jump Comic Ultra)