Chapter 1
The Highway

The Third World War began in 1992 with the explosion of a new type of bomb over Japan. Thirty-eight years later the world is at last recovering. But in Neo-Tokyo, near ground zero of the original destruction, a strange encounter takes place. Kaneda — young, restless, committed to defying authority — nearly runs down a child with his motorcycle. A child with the wizened face of an old man. A child with powers beyond physical science. The child is Number 26. He is the harbinger of deadly events that sweep Kaneda into a struggle between powerful and secret forces. At the center of this struggle is something feared and prized for the potential to shake the recovering world. Someone or something known only as…AKIRA.