Ryukazu Akirota - The Story of a Troubled Soul

Ryukazu Akirota - The Story of a Troubled Soul

A Story by Garrett Fitzgerald
"

The story of a Japanese man born into a life that would lock him into a road that many would not be able to walk. The future of this man is yet to be determined, but it will surely be revealed.

"
Minor Note: Notice that this story does not distinguish what language is being spoken at the time. This is because many different languages cross this story and there would be no point in saying what language someone was speaking every time a quote came up.

Minor Note #2: The setup of the text editor on this website is a bit tedious and as I don't write and edit the story using this editor, I copy the story from Google Documents into this and whenever something that is centered, after being pasted, it's changed and it dissects the word and orientates different parts of it in different ways. So down to the point, unfortunately, this story is not as aesthetically pleasing as I'd hope. So I apologize for that.




リュカズ・アキロタ
クユロタイ

Birthing The Luckless

It was a warm pleasant morning. The odor of melted steel and livestock infiltrated the air. The setting was a small village in a remote area of Japan called Kyrotau. The village was owned and inhabited by a clan named the Kyrotai. The Kyrotai were the family that started the clan and they were about to experience an unusual change of events.

Daikumo Akirota was the leader of the clan and the soon-to-be father of a baby that would change not only Daikumo's, but the whole clan's life. Saisume Akirota was the expecting mother who would soon give birth to a small and healthy baby by the name of Ryukazu. It was believed that due to the Ryukazu's size at birth, he would not be fit as the heir of the clan because of the widespread doubt of him being physically and mentally dominant. As a baby, he was a disappointment to the clan however, their opinions would change.



The Molding

Ryukazu had grown in his young years past the expectations of his family. He had also excelled in the clan's favorite pass-time, Machizuke. This fighting style had been created and pioneered by the Kyrotai clan. It was a completely new and unseen fighting style that was practiced by almost everyone living in Kyrotau. The purpose of the martial arts training was not to utilize it with intention to harm anyone else; In fact, the purpose was very similar to Chinese Monks. To train the body, spirit, soul, and to defend their homeland. Ryukazu was well trained in this field; eventually he became so skilled that he began adding new moves and techniques to the fighting style.

Ryukazu, often called Kazu, grew up as an outcast. For the son of the clan's leader it seems unusual that this would happen. The reason being that he did not share the same interest of the other youths in the clan. He had a focus on the future, not on the present. Because of his social neglect he often became stressed. He could never shake the stress until one day when he was at the market a few towns away. He was there to buy clothes for himself; While exchanging currency with the merchant for a shirt, he gazed to the far east side of the market where a two men stood next to a stall that was draped in a black curtain. After stuffing the clothes into his bag, he walked over to the stall examining what had been placed on the cushions. This stall was not the same as the others. This one had a more 'expensive' feel to it. It did not seem to be a normal flea market styled stall. The products being sold were small knives and swords that were placed on a large red cushion with yellow stitching. As he approached the stall he fixed his sight upon a balisong knife, commonly known as a 'butterfly' knife. As he stared a large man wearing a black suit and shades emerged through the black drapes and stood behind the stall looking at Kazu. After seeing what Kazu was so entranced by he decided to attempt talking him into buying the product. He picked the knife up and flipped it open with a few complex looking hand movements before stating in a deep voice: "This is one of our very best balisong knives. It was made in the balisong region of the Philippines. It was hand crafted with a squeeze-open locking latch that stays out of the way when you need it to. It is one-hundred percent authentic and is of the highest quality." As he spoke he demonstrated the features of the knife. Kazu was engulfed in his new-found passion for a simple blade. Kazu quickly returned the explanation with the most important question of the conversation: "How much?" The man replied with a number that seemed too expensive for a young kid such as himself and placed the knife back on the cushion. "This specific knife will cost you thirty-two thousand Yen but it is well worth it." Kazu promptly blurted out “I’ll take it!” before reaching into his bag to retrieve the small pouch in which he carried his currency. He unfolded the top and peered inside with a disappointed expression as he realized he had only a few hundred Yen left after buying clothes. He slowly looked up at the muscular man as a phrase leaked from his mouth in a weak-hearted tone "I don't have enough." As these words escaped his mouth, the two men outside of the stall quickly closed the curtains and the man changed his attractive merchant's expression into one of sheer anger. He hastily grabbed Kazu's shirt with both hands and yanked him closer as he furiously spoke, "You do /not/ come to this stall short-handed. We do serious business here. There is no room here for a f*****g kid to disrespect our business. Now get the hell  out of here and if I see you again trying to short-hand us, you will wish you had never come to this market in the first place." Kazu did not seem intimidated as his training demanded for him to not show fear due to it being recognized as a weakness. Because of this, the man became agitated as he rudely dropped Kazu down and started to grind his teeth together while glaring at him. Kazu slowly got up, brushed himself off, and grabbed the knife. As he did this the man quickly threw his hand at Kazu's neck but Kazu's reaction time was faster as he thrusted the blade across the bottom of his arm. The man yelled in pain as the two men quickly opened the curtain and both produced stilettos from the sheaths they were wearing discretely under their suit jackets. Kazu knew that it was a bad idea to try and disarm them both so he ran. He decided to fake right and sprint left as they quickly followed. He ran straight to a dead end and looked for a way out. Quickly deciding it was no use, he jumped up and stepped upon the counter of the stall in front of him and pushed himself onto the thin roof of it. He found himself running across the multiple roofs of stalls as he tried to quickly make his way out of the market. He finally found himself at the end at which he had come in and quickly jumped off of the roof of a stall and sprinting toward his horse which he had hitched to a nearby tree. He hastily untied the rope and jumped on as he rode away in the direction of Kyrotau. He had not realized it but he had just discovered his next favorite hobby, parkour. He also made a dangerous discovery of an alternate world that his eyes had been blind to.


The Evolution

Finally making it back to his village, he made his way to his family's rather large hut. He walked in nonchalantly and dropped the bag on the ground next to his bed. He sat upon the bed and started to catch his breath. His father, Daikumo, had noticed how hard Kazu was breathing and picked himself up to approach Kazu. "Are you alright, my son?" Without missing a beat Kazu replied "Fine. I'm fine father."
"Then why do you breathe so hard as if you were hunted?"
Kazu hesitated a bit before his father again asked "Well?"
"Because I was, father."
"Explain yourself."
"I was chased at the market today. Some guys. No big deal."
"When men chase you, it's never 'No big deal.' son. So enlighten me. What happened?"
"Well I was at the market and I went to that black stall in the back with the blades. I went and asked the guy how much a knife was because I wanted it."
"And?"
"Well after he realized that I didn't have enough, he was offended and grabbed me. He started to curse at me and then told me to never come back. That angered me so I grabbed the knife and he tried to attack me so I defended myself and cut his wrist. Two guys then opened the curtain on the stall and pulled stilettos out so I ran. I escaped and I'm fine. Like I said, no big deal."
"Son, this is not good. This /is/ a big deal. However it will be taken care of. You won't experience a problem with those men at the market anymore."



Tension Rising

The Kyrotai were not a violent clan. In fact, they were quite peaceful however, many knew of their skills in their form of martial arts; Which is why stalls could be seen closing up as Daikumo passed them followed by his son and three other Kyrotai. Daikumo was unarmed and was being followd by Kazu, who was armed with nothing but his new balisong, and three other Kyrotai all equipped with katanas crafted by the clan's master blacksmith. Almost every merchant closed up shop except for the one in the back. As the group of Kyrotai approached the stall Daikumo's stare burned through the guards' bravery. The guard on the left peeked his head through the curtain behind him and quietly stuttered "B..-Boss!" The muscular man that Kazu had met the other day emerged from the curtain and glared at the men. As the men stopped in front of the stall, everything was quiet. The two groups stood silently staring at each-other in suspense until Daikumo broke the silence after turning to Kazu "I assume this is the man?"
"Yes. This is the man." Kazu said as he morphed his gaze to an angry glare directed to the man. Daikumo looked back to the man and asked him "Do you know who I am Mr...? The man replied with "Mr. Sizouku. And no. Why the f**k should I care? I run s**t around here." One of the guards started to become nervous and leaned over to the man whispering in his ear. "So. I hear you are some badass leader of a big bad clan, hm? Am I supposed to be scared? Ha!"
"Not of me, no. But of him." Daikumo said as he strafed to his right revealing Kazu behind him.
"This damn kid?! He is a p***y a*s thief! He couldn't scare a mouse. F*****g coward." He said while chuckling, obviously undermining Kazu.
"I doubt that is something you would like to say directly to him."
Sizouku walked around and stood in front of the stall looking down at Kazu. He slowly started speaking in an antagonizing tone "You are a worthless piece of s**t and a thief. You will never become anything in life you little maggot."
By this time Kazu has developed an extreme anger but was doing a good job of concealing it. Sizuoku developed a sarcastic smile as he gazed into Kazu’s eyes. "You really don't know what you are getting yourself into, do you Sizuoku? You have just stumbled upon your demise." Kazu said while staring back up at Sizuoku's face. "Oh really? Ha! Funny." Sizuoku said before clenching his fist and throwing it towards Kazu's left cheek. Kazu ducked down as Sizuoku's hand flew over and threw a powerful kick to the side of Sizuoku left leg. Sizuoku lost balance and bent his leg as he let out a painful grunt. The stall guards quickly armed themselves with Wakizashis from the stall. Before they could get in an aggressive stance, two of the three Kyrotais quickly drew their katanas and clashed them against the guards' blades and flung them to the side. The Kyrotai held the swords at the guards' throats. The guards realized they had lost and decided to slowly walk away and flee the market. All of this happening in the blink of an eye as Kazu is found once again glaring into Sizuoku eyes.
"You think because you got a hit on my leg that you are winning?"
"No. What makes me think I'm winning is this." Kazu said as he jumped up throwing a powerful kick into Sizuoku's chest and landing gracefully. Sizuoku let out a powerful grunt as he stumbled back into the stall and onto the blades. Fortunately for him, they were all resting on their sides so they hadn't damaged his skin. Sizuoku decided to grab a knife from the stall and swung it at Kazu from behind the curtain. Kazu, knowing he would try something like that, dodged to his left, grabbed Sizuoku's hand, and thrusted his elbow toward Sizuoku's, breaking it. Sizuoku let out a shrieking yell as he dropped the knife and fell to his knees. Kazu looked down into Sizuoku's eyes without looking away. Sizuoku remained on his knees looking at Kazu knowing he could not escape. He realized that if he tried, he would simply be captured by one of the men accompanying Kazu. Understanding that this was his defeat he smiled menacingly before spitting at Kazu.  "Finish him." Daikumo said coldly overseeing the situation. Kazu nodded as he pulled the balisong from his pocket and flipping it open. Kazu, still staring into Sizuoku's eyes, plunged the blade into Sizuoku's heart and slowly pushed it deeper until he finally removed it in one quick motion. Sizuoku fell to the ground, lifeless. Kazu swung the blade toward the air in front of him and abruptly halted it as a stream of blood flew off of the blade and onto Sizuoku's body. He flipped the blade closed and slid it back into his pocket. He placed his hands together and closed his eyes as he recited a few phrases which were too quiet to make out except for the words kami, urami, and peace. He then turned around to look up to his father. "This is not something many people are subject to but fortunately or unfortunately you will be for the rest of your life." Kazu nodded as he made his way back to the entrance of the market followed by his father and the three Kyrotai. They mounted themselves upon their horses and rode back to Kyrotau.


The Sprouting

Kazu had matured quite a bit throughout the years. He was now an old teenager. He had become close to a woman in his clan named Akiruma. They had spent much time together and were now dating for about four years. The time had also treated his knowledge well. He had taught himself the art of balisong and had helped evolve the art of Machizuke. He had also been taught the technique of the clan's blacksmiths and growing the clan's number one herb, Haka. This herb was not sold as it was. It was something that was only known by the clan itself. They had been the ones to grow it for years with no one else ever discovering it. They had used it for many things: healing, meditation, haka cigars, incense, food, upon many other uses. Kazu had also practiced parkour throughout the years by sneaking out of his village at night and traveling to places that had more structures than his village, such as the market. Kazu had felt somewhat useless with as much knowledge as he held because he did not have the need to utilize it. He spoke to Daikumo about this and he told Kazu that things would soon change for him and he'd be able to use his skills. During the course of the days before this conversation Daikumo had realized that the clan needed to evolve once more. Even though his clan was a peaceful one, others weren't any more. They were becoming what are now known as Yakuzas and to survive, Kyrotai had to do the same. He decided to send the capable youth to the city of Hikiban to establish the clan's new presence there as a Yakuza. Daikumo decided to put Kazu in charge of this movement with Ryjin, Kazu's best friend, second in command. He told Kazu this a week before his engagement to Akiruma. Kazu was somewhat devastated as he realized he had to leave his family and fiancée behind for the city. "Kazu. Do you recall the man you killed at the market when you were young?" Daikumo said to Kazu while sitting on his hammock.
"Yes... Why?”
"He was the leader of a Yakuza known as the Dai-Sungai. And now, they are your enemy. They have already spread a small force into Hikiban. Although they are small, they are fierce. They only have about twenty men. The current leader is a short man who they call Jou-Shi. He is the son of Sizuoku the man you killed at the market. You must understand that they will make attempts on the lives of the Kyrotai as well as try to steal your business and do anything to overcome you. The stall they ran at the market, was just a front for gun and drug trade. However, I expect you to retain the teachings of your culture and only use your katana in the situation of physical conflict unless it is completely necessary that you use a firearm." Daikumo nodded his head motioning to Kazu's own hand-crafted blade as it leaned against the support to his hammock.
"I understand father. However, how am I supposed to make these connections to get the materials needed for guns and drugs?"
"You will not sell drugs. Drugs are the worst thing that can happen to a person. You will sell haka and blades, supplied by us, and guns...- I will leave that to you."
Kazu nodded a few times as he started his way out of the hut. He made his way to Ryjin's and pushed the door open. "Jin? You here buddy?"
"Hm? Yeah. Sorry. I was a bit pre-occupied." Jin said as he wiped his katana with a white cloth.
"I have news."
"Do tell Kazu."
"We are moving to Hikiban with a few other men. We are transitioning to a modern Yakuza. Our economy can not thrive here. So we need to move to the city to build our consumer basis as well as advance our market."
"Good, good. This sounds as if it will be fun. I was looking forward to traveling elsewhere any way." Jin said smiling at Kazu.
"Pack your bags brother. We are leaving in a few days."


We are... Kyrotai!

Kazu had his bags packed with clothes, a suit, a few large wads of money held together with a few rubber-bands, bags of haka, a box of blades, and finally his katana, sheathed and mounted on his back. Jin was by his side carrying probably the same within his bag. Daikumo sidestepped into Kazu's path and held his arms out. Kazu embraced his father warmly as he said "Goodbye father. I love you. I /will/ visit...- often." "I know you will son." Daikumo said smiling. "Bring me back one of those phone devices so that we may speak while we are not together." "Will do." Kazu let go of his father and walked toward Akiruma who was standing a few feet down the path. She was obviously shaken at Kazu's leave. "I am coming with you Ryukazu. I can't just lose you." Akiruma said staring into Kazu's eyes before wrapping her arms around him gently and squeezing him against her. "You won't be losing me Aki. I will come back but you have to trust me when I tell you that what will happen in the city, is much too dangerous for me to have the love of my life subject to." said Kazu before he pulled back and eventually moved his lips towards hers placing a gentle kiss on her lips. He then pulled back and smiled "I'll be fine sweetheart. Don't worry." Kazu raised his hand in the air, stuck his index finger in the air and twirled it in a circle. As he did this the other men followed made their ways behind him and Jin and they made their way out of the village and walked further upon the path toward civilization.

The men approached the train station. They walked up to the ticket booth and Kazu made it his responsibility to tell the man "Fifteen tickets to Hikiban please." He slipped a few bills to the man as he nodded. "Yes Sir." the ticket handler said with a somewhat surprised face. He seemed intimidated by the men as he slid the stack of tickets to Kazu. He took the tickets and turned around to the men smiling. "Are you ready men?" "Hai!" replied the men. Jin moved closer to Kazu "The real question is, Are you ready, Kazu?"
"Heh. Does it really matter? I'm going to have to be, aren't I?"
"Guess so. Don't worry. I'll be by your side all the way through." said Jin with a warm smile.
Kazu turned back to the crowd of men. "Hikiban! Here! Comes! Kyrotai!"

The men boarded the train and all piled into four rooms all next to each-other. Kazu sat down in a room with no one else but Jin. "So. Haka, blades, and guns?" said Jin as he leaned back into the small couch.
"Yeah. We'll need a front for the sales. It's not like we can just sell it on the corner yelling "Cheap illegal products!", ya' know?"
"Well I can get us that. I have a friend who lives in Hikiban. He owns a small two-story building. Few apartments on top and a space for lease on the bottom. All I have to do is make a call and it's ours."
"Jin, what would I do without you?" said Kazu with a smirk.
Kazu lifted himself up and walked toward the door, locking it. He then dropped himself onto the couch and started to fall asleep. Jin decided to start writing out a few plans.

As the men arrived Jin took lead of the group. "Follow me guys. It's just around the way." The men followed anxiously as they walked upon the sidewalks of the busy city. They finally came to a small building with a faded sign attached in-between the top and bottom stories. Jin walked up to the door and knocked on it in an obviously planned pattern. After a few moments an older man in his late thirties answered. "Jin?" Jin chuckled joyfully as he said "Haijun! Long time no see! Oh! Kazu. This is my god-father, Haijun." "Nice to meet you Haijun. I really appreciate you letting us use this place. You have no idea how much it will help." Kazu said while smiling at Haijun. Haijun turned his attention to Jin and adopted a confused expression. "Yeah.... So.... Can we use this place Haijun?" Jin said while he scratched the back of his neck with a nervous smile. Haijun seemed dumbfounded. "We'll pay rent. Everything!" Jin reached into his left pocket and produced a few bills as he pushed them into Haijun's hand. "See?"
"Fine. But whatever you do with this place, /you/ are responsible." Haijun said as he took a few steps back dragging the door backward with him. The men piled into the building all nodding respectfully to Haijun. Haijun sighed and eventually produced a smile. "Heh. F*****g Jin." he muttered as he chuckled lightly.

The men made their ways to the second story and all piled into one room. Kazu took place at the front of the room with his recruits as his subjects. "Men! Do you know who we are?!" Kazu yelled as he smiled proudly. "No one knows?! We! Are! Kyrotai!" Kazu threw his fist in the air above him victoriously. The men all smiled and became more enthusiastic as they started to quietly chant "Kyrotai! We are Kyrotai! Kyrotai! We are Kyrotai!" The men eventually calmed down and made small talk until all heading to separate rooms in groups once again leaving Kazu and Jin to their own room. They all slowly moved their ways to sleep.

Becoming Educated

During the course of a few months, business improved. The restaurant had been flourishing to the group's hopes. When Kazu arrived in Hikiban, he took advantage of his surroundings. He took a liking to many different hobbies and interest. Quite hastily he became extremely knowledgable on the inner-working of both vehicles, and computers. He spent his free time tinkering with his recently bought laptop. He had even become somewhat of a hacker; so much so that when the business needed supplies, he'd order them online and intercept the order form, spoofing the currency details and in turn, getting products for free.
He recently discovered that police officers had a no-chase rule they had to abide by if the suspect had been traveling faster than a certain speed. Kazu took a liking to this rule. It allowed him to do things with his car that not many would be allowed to do. This in conjuction with his parallel interest in the guts of cars had equated to an interest in racing. Thankfully for him, the street racing scene was somewhat lively in Japan, if you could take the time to discover it. After a little while of street racing he had started getting invites to legal, closed course events. The kinds where it wasn't just one race between two cars like he was used to, but instead a large race with multiple cars. It wasn't just racing either. There were the fun events such as drifting, trick-parking, slalom, maneuvering, and the such. After a short while of burning the asphalt, he had been discovered by a somewhat large company by the name of Sparco. They had offered him a small and humble sponsorship which he swiftly accepted with much satisfaction. Sparco got famous for making racing seats and wasn't offering him a substantial amount of money but the simple fact that they had been willing to endorse his racing career was good enough for him.
Kazu's urge for his traditional hobby of parkour had found a new playground in the hustle bustle of the city. All the buildings of multiple different sizes clogging up the air had unlocked a new potential for his talent to fulfill. Many places he had to travel to, he did so using this method instead of motorized transportation seeing to it as the number of cars on the road at any given hour was substantial.

Monopoly

It had been about a year or so since the group had arrived in Hikiban. By this time they had renovated most of the building into a fully-fledged Japanese restaurant. They made a large profit on the business but it was really just a front for selling their haka, blades and the occasional firearm. They made a substantial profit in this market but they needed to step their game up. They had to get a firearm connection. If other Yakuzas, especially Dai-Sungai, owned and sold firearms, Kyrotai needed to as well. One day a man came into the restaurant and sat down as if a normal customer. The waiter came to his table and he asked for the owner. The waiter then walked to the back of the restaurant and retrieved Kazu. Kazu approached the man and asked him "I am the owner of this establishment. How may I help you?" "I have a proposal for you." the man said looking up to Kazu with a blank expression. Kazu motioned the man to follow him and they made their way toward the back room of the business. "Have a seat Mr...?" "Spider. They call me Spider. And thank you." the man said as he slowly lowered himself into the seat that was placed in front of Kazu's desk. Kazu took a seat in his chair behind the desk. "Alright Mr. Spider. So then, what do you have for me?"
"Well. I /do/ know that other groups are dealing with things that are a bit more...loud."
"And where exactly are you going with that statement?"
"What I'm getting at is this. I know you need hardware. Which is why I am here. To offer my services."
"And what are the services you speak of and how much would they cost?"
"I can get you guns. Desert Eagles, AKs, Silenced Pistols, and Shotguns... for a price. You'd pay 70% of street prices."
"Make it sixty and we have a deal as well as a partnership."
Spider nodded while smiling and held his hand out to shake Kazu's. Kazu proceeded to shake his hand with a serious but gratified expression.
"First shipment will be two days from now at three in the morning."
"I'll be ready. Good doing business with you Mr. Spider."

It was three in the morning as the skyline began to dim. Four shadows could be seen moving boxes into the back of the building from a box truck as one shadow was obviously giving orders as he was pointing at certain areas. The next day Kazu ordered his men to start walking the streets and notifying customers of their new market. He told them to offer the weapons at 90% of current street price as to start an black market monopoly.

A few months past and the shipments kept coming through however, Spider was not the delivery boy anymore. This striked Kazu as suspicious. He pondered on this while sitting at his desk within the restaurant one evening. It was late at night and the men were sitting around downstairs. Everyone was simply socializing with each-other as someone barged in the front door that had obviously not been locked. Kazu abruptly stopped speaking to Jin, who was sitting in front of him at the table, and refocused his sight on the door. There stood a short man who was followed by about twelve others. The man in front was obviously the boss of the men. The men walked forward a bit before Kazu stood up and said "Hold up there buddy. We're closed. Sorry. Come back tomorrow." The men stopped as the short man rudely said "Shut the f**k up."
"Who the hell are you to tell me to "Shut the f**k up." in my place of business?!"
"I'm Jou-Shi m**********r. Maybe you know me. You've been stealing guns from me so I'd expect you to."
"The hell do you mean I stole guns from you?!"
"I've been losing gun shipments a lot lately and I have traced them back here. Don't act stupid you f*****g c**t. I know what you do. Now that that has been said, I either expect you to pay me back with those weapons along with... something." Jou-Shi turned to one of the men beside him and asked "What do you think is a suitable payment for an offense such as this?" The man responded with "Either his life, or a few fingers and a large sum of money." By this time, the Kyrotai had been ready for battle. Most of them with their hands already in their suit jackets resting on the handle of what is probably a Desert Eagle. Kazu however, did not want this situation to resort to a shootout. He’d rather simply go one-on-one with this Jou-Shi. Besides, even if Kazu were to reach for his weapon, he’d more than likely be dead within the second.
"So. What would you rather pay?" Jou-Shi said with a smirk.
Kazu glared at him as he adopted an angry frown as he stated "I’d rather pay you with a beating." before dropping down and sweeping his legs out from under him. As he hit the ground, one of his men reached inside his jacket. Kazu assumed for a gun. He didn’t like using firearms; he thought hand-to-hand was the most effective way to handle disagreements. But in a situation like this, where the enemy decides to escalate the situation, he had no other choice. He made a mad dash toward the back of the building. He had to jump over the counter and slide inside the room before grabbing a nearby crowbar and prying open a box. He stuffed his hands inside the hay until he found his head mounted on an M4 assault rifle. By this time the sound of gunfire had infiltrated the air along with muffled shouting. Ryjin had also made his way to the back room and decided to grab an MP5 from a desk that was resting upon a desk right inside the room. "Please tell me you have a plan." Jin said peering out from the door way. "Yeah. We kill these guys and take over Hikiban with a monopoly. We may have to take a few more suppliers out though." Kazu said while loading a magazine into the M4.
"I meant a plan to kill these guys, you idiot."
"Shoot them."
Kazu reached for his belt where a radio was holstered and grabbed it. He pulled it up to his mouth and pressed a button on the left as he spoke into it. "Alright listen up men. Me and Jin are in the back room. We will try to cover you from here. Make your way up the stairs and get to cover. As they go up after you, we will go from behind and squeeze them in the stairway. We'll mow 'em down while you take precise shots that /will/ kill them. Leave the leader alive. Don't shoot him."
The Kyrotai layed down fire until a few of them could run up the stairs. They got to cover but there were still two men downstairs who couldn't get enough cover fire to get up the stairs. Kazu ducked down and walked out of the doorway and took cover behind the counter before blind-firing into the Dai-Sungai's general area. As he did this the remaining two Kyrotai ran up the stairs. The air had been clean and absent of bullets for a few minutes. There were no sounds of gunfire or shouting; only quiet whispering. After a few minutes, the Dai-Sungai tried to slowly sneak up the stairs in a crouched position to surprise the Kyrotai and gain an advantage. However, as slow as they were advancing up the stais, Kazu and Jin had left the back room and began to make their way to the stairs. As they approached the side a few shots were heard and a loud thump before a body rolled down them. A flurry of gunshots then ensued as Kazu and Jin had turned the corner to unload on the stair set. Kazu had decided to fire up into the stairset at the men before walking around the corner toward the entrance to seek out stragglers. As he approached the entrance door, Jou-Shi popped out from behind an over-turned table and aimed his handgun at Kazu. As he did this Kazu quickly raised his M4 to focus the barrel towards Jou-Shi's head. They had both stood staring at aiming at each-other while the sound of gunfire had dimmed down to silence. Jin and six other Kyrotai ran down the stairs and turned the corner to see Kazu and Jou-Shi aiming at eachother. As the men stumbled upon this sight they stopped in place and raised their guns to aim at Jou-Shi. "Surrender Jou-Shi. All of your men are dead. You're the last one. You don't want to die too, do you?" Kazu said while maintaining his aim at Jou-Shi's head. "You think I'm an idiot? I know you're going to kill me whether I surrender or not. I know how these things work. Which is why I plan to take you with me! Jou-Shi shouted as he pulled the trigger. Kazu moved his aim to Jou-Shi's left shoulder and released two bullets from the chamber. Jou-Shi fell to the ground in pain. Kazu walked toward him and kicked his gun away from him before dropping his M4 to sling around toward his back. "Kazu. You're hit." said Jin while pointing to Kazu's left arm. Kazu looked down to his left arm to see two blood-soaked rips in his suit sleeve.
"So I am. Jin. Tie this guy up to a chair and load him into the box truck. Clean this place up and put all the waste in the back of the truck too. I'm going to go get this bandaged up." Kazu walked around the corner and upstairs through the multiple lifeless bodies. He made his way to his room where he took his suit jacket off and dropped it to the floor. He walked toward the dresser and opened the top drawer. He grabbed a small wooden box which he placed on top of the dresser. He opened the box to reveal an assortment of healing items including a roll of bandage, and small towel alcohol, a pair of surgical pliers, and bag of haka. He picked up the pliers which he dug into his gun-shot wounds as he squinted. He eventually ripped the two bullets out of his arm before dropping them to the floor. He wiped the pliers off with the towel and placed them into the box. He then removed the alcohol which he popped the top off of and poured down his arm. He then poured a bit directly into each wound and placed the bottle of alcohol next the box. He then opened the bag of haka and grabbed a few leaves, placing them next to the box as well. He then picked up the roll of bandage and placed an end of it on the bottom side of his arm. Before wrapping it around his arm he placed the haka leaves directly on the wounds. He then wrapped the bandage around his arm a few times and bit the end, ripping the roll from the applied bandage. Kazu then walked toward his open closet and reached inside. His hand emerged with a suit jacket and undershirt hung on a hanger. He unbuttoned both and slipped them off. He then walked out of the room and down the stairs toward the back of the store. By this time there were no bodies left inside the business. He grabbed his katana and a spare from the corner of the back room before stepping through the door to the loading dock. He walked through the doorway to see Jin ordering the remaining six Kyrotai to load the truck with the bodies of the dead Dai-Sungai. The seven fallen Kyrotai had been layed down next to each-other and covered by a few large blankets. The dead Dai-Sungai had all been loaded into the back of the truck along with Jou-Shi who had been restrained to a chair and gagged. Kazu had ordered the Jin to drive him to the docks in the truck and the remaining men to clean the business and clean up the fallen Kyrotai.

Jin and Kazu had driven to a secluded dock and pulled into a deserted warehouse. When inside Jin went to the back of the truck and opened the door. He then hopped into the back and grabbed the chair in which Jou-Shi was restrained to. He then pushed the chair out of the back as Jou-Shi fell on his knees. He let out a strong grunt as he hit the ground. Jin dropped down and re-arranged the chair to an up-right position. Kazu had just stepped out of the truck as he walked toward the back with his katana, sheathed in his left hand, and the spare in his right. He approached the chair and threw the spare katana to Jou-Shi's mouth before removing his gag. "F**k You!" Jou-Shi said before spitting toward Kazu's feet. Kazu shook his head and walked to the back of the chair where he unsheathed his katana and swung it toward the rope that had restrained Jou-Shi to the chair. Jou-Shi quickly grabbed a hold of the katana in his lap and stood to his feet. He quickly turned around and swung it at Kazu in the process of unsheathing it. Kazu raised his katana to Jou-Shi's as a loud *CLANG!* could be heard. Kazu then kicked the chair between them toward Jou-Shi's knees. Jou-Shi strafed left, dodging the chair and threw a high swing toward Kazu's head. Kazu quickly ducked and thrusted the end of his blade into Jou-Shi's right leg. "AH! M**********r!" Jou-Shi said as he fell to the ground, dropping his blade in the process. Kazu slowly walked toward Jou-Shi and placed the edge of his katana on his throat. Jou-Shi swallowed hard before asking "What do you want?" "I want to know who you are working for. And how many other employees that person has." "No one, no one. I work for myself. I was the boss. I took over the Yakuza after my father was killed one day as he was running a stall at a market. I do everything on my own. Just let me go and no one will ever mess with you again." Jou-Shi said while staring at the blade. "Well you see, I can't do that. You came into my business, accused me of stealing, /and/ killed my men. Your life is the penalty for this offense." Kazu applied a mild amount of pressure to the blade as he slid it down Jou-Shi's torso, leaving a large gash behind it. Jou-Shi shrieked in pain as he tried to wiggle his way away from the blade. "And one more thing, I killed your father, you piece of s**t. Have a nice after-life." Kazu said before pushing the blade into the upper-left region of Jou-Shi's torso. Jou-Shi's eyes widened and his last breath could be heard before his body lost all resistance and rested upon the ground, lifeless. Kazu removed the blade before swinging it toward Jou-Shi's body and halting the blade in place as a medium amount of blood flung off of the katana. He then wiped it on a clean portion of Jou-Shi's suit before sheathing the blade and walking toward the truck. He then told Jin to get out of the truck before picking up a nearby brick and placing it on the gas pedal. The box-truck sped off into the harbor with the dead Dai-Sungai still in the back. The duo then walked back to the restaurant and rested for the night.


A New Beginning - A Haunting Past

Kazu had decided to visit his village to report the elimination of the Dai-Sungai. He had left Jin and the six remaining Kyrotai in charge of the restaurant in Hikiban. He had taken a train back with nothing but his suit, a large a amount of money to fund his village, and his katana which was held in a large duffel bag. After he got off the train he departed for the somewhat-long venture back to the village. As he approached the top of the hill that overlooked his village, he saw smoke in the distance. He finally made it to the top and what he saw was not a warm welcome back. Instead he saw the huts, livestock and villagers burnt to a crisp. He further approached the village realizing that this had been a siege. He noticed that the only hut that was not burned, was his family's. As he pushed the door in and walked through he had focused his gaze upon his family and Akiruma. They had been tied to chairs and tortured. His father, Daikumo, had no eyes nor teeth left. He had multiple large gashes all over his body. His mother, Saisume, suffered the same fate. Akiruma however, was humiliated before being put to death. She had no clothes upon her body and had obviously been violated in unspeakable ways. Kazu had not shown any emotion at the sight of this tragedy. He simply walked toward the wall and un-mounted the sword rack which held the clan's symbolic Katana and Wakizashi and placed them into the duffel bag. He then walked out of the hut with a blank facial expression and fixed his gaze upon a small piece of paper that was held to the ground by a knife piercing its corner. The paper had what seemed to be a dark, blood-stained sunflower with two swords crossed in front of it with “Dai-Sungai” overlapping. He ripped the paper up from the ground and stuffed it in his pocket before turning and walking back toward the train station. He was in shock. The sight of his village in ruins and his family killed after such a siege had broken him as a person. To the point where he was emotionally numb for the time being. As he approached the train station he reached his left hand into his pocket and produced a cell phone. He unlocked it and tapped two buttons before raising it to his ear. "Jin. Get the men, and leave. Start new lives. All of you. Separately. This is goodbye. I hope to see you again in this lifetime." Before Ryjin could respond, Kazu pressed the end button and threw the phone into a nearby pond. He then walked toward the ticket kiosk and looked at the map that had been posted in the window. “Give me a ticket to the port. And also, ship that purple car over there to America's West Coast.” He told the teller before placing a twenty-thousand yen bill, a set of keys, and his ID. on the counter. The teller nods and places a ticket and a few papers on the counter before pulling the money in and saying "Will do. The pick-up location and procedure is explained in those papers." Before he has the chance to count the money, Kazu takes the documents and walks off. He walks onto the train and into a room before closing and locking the door. He then takes a seat and leans his head upon the window, closing his eyes.


Eventually the train stops and Kazu is awoken by a loud beep coming from the speakers in the room. He picks up his bag and unlocks the door before departing and making his way to a small area of the docks shrouded in midnight darkness. As he is walking, he sees a small, run-down yacht that is obviously soon to depart, as the captain is untying the ropes. He walks up to the end of the dock and asks the man “Where are you sailing to?”
“America.” The man says with a large smile.
Kazu hops onto the boat and reaches into his pocket before shaking the man’s hand and saying “Take me.” The man unfolds his hand and peers at its contents, smiling, and makes his way to the top floor before starting the engine. Kazu retreats to the cabin and drops his bag before collapsing on what he assumed to be a sofa. After a few moments, he was in a deep slumber.


Journey To A New Life

Awakened by a sharp spike of light, glaring into his eye, Kazu sat up on the sofa and yawned before rubbing his eyes and looking around. The room was absent of life, he thought; apart from himself, of course. The room seemed quite humble as well. He found pleasure in this. It was somewhat of an escape from the busy and overwhelming city life he had become so used to after leaving his village. The room had four doors leading elsewhere. He assumed two of them led to a bathroom or shower of some sort. Another was obviously the entrance from the outside. The fourth however, was a mystery to him. He fell to temptation and decided to get, and see what was inside. He approached the door and turned the handle. Locked. He shrugged and turned making his way outside onto the deck of the boat. As he opened the door, the sound of splashing waves and a calm sea filled his ears. Peering out toward the vast picture of blue, there was nothing but water and the white fluffy clouds that seemed to be blocking the sun from shining on the boat. “Wonderful.”, he thought. “Not much chance of sunburn.” Immediately as this statement ran through his head, he looked down at himself, remembering that he was wearing a suit. “Not much chance of sunburn.”, he thought again with a faint chuckle. He made his way to the stairs and as he ascended, his gaze was filled with both a beautiful picture of which you would assume is what is truly seen by the photographers employed by postcard companies, and a man. The man, somewhat fulfilling the the relaxed ocean feel of the post card, was wearing a straw hat, shorts, a loose tank-top, and no shoes. He was leaning back in the captain’s chair and resting his feet up on the glass that overviewed the controls of the boat. He slowly made his way to the seat near the front of the boat, not knowing whether the man had been asleep or not. After quietly having a seat and examining the man, he realized the man was somewhat older than him. Not in an elderly sense but maybe surpassing Kazu by fifteen or so years. He also concluded the man was asleep seeing to it as his head was comfortably slouched to his left side and his eyes had been closed. After realizing these things, Kazu let out somewhat of a sigh and peered around the boat. "So… You got a name?" The man said to Kazu's surprise.
"Ryukazu, Sir."
"Eh. Don't call me Sir. The name's Ichiro Yakamoto. And it's nice to meet you Kazu." He said with a friendly smile.
"Thank you for taking me Ichiro. I appreciate it."
"No problem, my friend. It's no big deal. There's room and it's lonely so who am I to complain?"
Kazu nodded with a smile. Something he thought he wouldn't be doing for a very long time since his focus was not upon happiness but rather his recent past. "This is a very nice boat Ichiro. I like it."
"You do? I'm glad. It's all I have."
Kazu refocused his stare upon Ichiro's face as he curiously inquired "What do you mean?"
"I mean it's all I have. As in possessions. This boat and that which it contains make up my entire fortune."
"Planning on starting a new life in America?"
"Yep." He said with a quick grin.
"Then we have something in common. Although I highly doubt you're leaving Japan for the same reasons I am."
"I wouldn't be so quick to cross something out. You never know."
"I suppose."
"So as you've dropped the bait in the water, you've peaked my interest and here's the bite. Why're you leaving Japan for the US?"
"To get away."
"Aren't we all." Ichiro said nonchalantly as he turned his head back toward the front of the boat and closed his eyes.
"From people. Or at least take a break from them. I don't plan to escape them but I need to reinforce certain aspects of my life before I decide to take any action."
"People hunting you, you need power, which you don't have because they either destroyed it or took it, and you're hoping to make a temporary escape to America to obtain some form of new power or stability enough so that you may find the men who did this to you so that you may exact some form of revenge on them instead of Cleaning the slate and starting anew in America." As Ichiro said this as if it were normal, Kazu seemed somewhat perplexed and obviously curious as to how Ichiro seemed to know his life story without the two ever meeting before. "How… did… you…"
"Eh the suit gave it away. And the fact that you have tattoos from head to toe hiding behind those dress clothes."
Kazu gazed at him with a continued quizzical look that slowly turned into a somewhat comfortable grin before letting out a small chuckle. "So what's your story, Ichiro? What're you leaving Japan for?"
"Eh.", he shrugged. "Long story short; I ran my own business that was flourishing and was growing by the second. There was a little bit of back room dealing involved in it but it wasn't the primary money-maker of the business. Well one day some a*****e came in there with the normal 'Look at me! I'm a badass criminal and I'm gonna extort you!' bullshit and I didn't take too kindly to it. He got ripe with me and I decided to 'defend' myself and beat him senseless. Then I threw him out on the sidewalk where he, quite honestly, crawled away. Turned out he was a member of a growing yakuza, which I'm sure you're familiar with, and a few guys came in the next day with… terms. Well they wanted an apology, obviously, and also they wanted an outrageous percentage of my profits. I decided to go with the wind and sell the business to them after re-naming it. I got a humble amount of money for it, but they don't know that before I took my belongings and left, I replaced all the products in the building with defects. Stuff that customers wouldn't take to kindly to. They'll probably turn it into a back-room gambling spot anyway. The reason I left, is because I just didn't want to deal with the bullshit. And I was ready for something new so I decided to up and leave. I didn't have much tying me down except for the business so what the hell."
"Hm. Interesting story. Sounds typical of Hikiban."
"I just hope it wasn't your Yakuza I had problems with. But then again, since you're on this boat, and you're leaving for somewhat of a new life, I doubt it'd matter anyway." Ichiro's eyes had still been closed as he finished his statement off with a slight shrug.
"So what's your story, Kazu? I know the general outline of your dilemma in Hikiban, but what about you. How'd you get there and all that."
"Oh. That's a long story straight out of a movie."
"Good. If it's straight out of a movie, it's bound to be more interesting."
Kazu didn't know why, but he felt comfortable talking to Ichiro. For some reason, he didn't see a problem with telling Ichiro his history. Obviously, a story like his is something he'd rather not share to just anyone but Ichiro, for some reason, seemed different.
"Hopefully I won't disappoint. Well I was born out in the middle of nowhere in a village of my family's clan. The Kyrotai. Long life of training in martial arts and living a simple farm life till one crazy day at the market that ended up being a somewhat unfortunate event for a few men running a stall in the back with back-room deals. Well, I ended up having a grudge with the head honcho of the stall and it ended up being a bad day for him; apart from it being his last. Later down the road, similar to you, I found out the guy belonged to a yakuza called the Dai-Sungai; or at least it'd soon become a yakuza called the Dai-Sungai. At the moment it had only been an evolving clan such as mine. The only problem is my clan was peaceful for the most part. The Sungai clan had been somewhat erratic. Naturally, the death of that member was enough to declare war on each other. After a while, my father, the leader of the clan, had decided to send me and a few other high;y-trusted member of the clan to Hikiban to start our clan's city-existence as what would eventually become a yakuza. We were quite successful in our business dealings. I ended up learning a few different trades and concepts that you didn't come by so often in the country-side. I learned a lot of useful things such as computer science and engineering, how to drive and subsequently how to race, business skills, and the such. Well after me and my colleagues became a force to be reckoned with, another competing group intruded upon our business and decided to raise hell. Well it turns out they worked for the Dai-Sungai. To sum up that night, it didn’t turn out too well for him and his buddies. I was under the impression that after this night the Dai-Sungai had been eliminated due to it being such a small force but when I reported back to my village to confirm their demise, it turns out they had laid siege upon my village. Everything burnt to a crisp except for my family’s abode. Upon entry, I discovered my family tortured and killed. And my fiancé violated, and obviously tortured and killed as well. I called up my men in Hikiban to ditch the city and start new lives. And, well, here I am.” Briefly after explaining his predicament, a cloud crawled over his face over pure anguish.
“Well I guess, in a sense, we’re in the same boat!” Ichiro said with a hearty chuckle, obviously making light of his pun. Kazu refrained from showing acknowledgment of Ichiro’s humor and instead focused his eyes on the vast empty sea on the port side of the boat. There was a silence between the two before Ichiro seemingly abrupted with “Aren’t you hot in that dang suit?”
“I’m used to it. I rarely wear anything besides a suit.” Kazu was wearing light beige dress pants and a suit jacket over a white dress shirt that was unbuttoned at the top. “Well it’s about to start raining.” Ichiro said as he reached to a button on the far end of the control panel and tapped it. The boat’s canopy started to slowly raise and fully covered the top floor of the boat just as it started to rain lightly. The sky had started to darken and not just from the rain clouds. “Why don’t you get some sleep?”
“I think I will. I’ll see you in the morning.”
Oh! And make yourself at home. You’re welcome to anything inside the boat.”
“Thanks Ichiro.”
“No need.” Ichiro said with a smile.


Locals Only

After about two weeks of open sea, they gained sight of shore. They had arrived in America. Now the only problem was avoiding coast guard ships; which shouldn’t be too hard seeing to it as America’s west coast is full of recreational watercrafts. Regardless, Ichiro would have to be careful.

Ichiro examined the waters before him. He tried to search for and identify any authoritative watercraft so that he may avoid them. He noticed only a few recreational boaters and two possible coast guard boats which were surprisingly anchored next to each other and stationary. He assumed the crews of each boat were conversing which made it easier for him to slip by them. “Don’t worry. We shouldn’t be noticed. The boat is registered. However, you are not.” He said to Kazu while he stared straight to shore.
“I’ve got a green card. I briefly visited the US by request of my father in case I needed a saving grace such as now.”
“Wonderful! That lowers our risk substantially.”
"Yeah. I never made use of it but now I'm thankful I got one years ago."
Ichiro lowered the speed on the boat as they slowly creeped closer to a small and somewhat secluded dock on shore. He piloted the boat next to the dock before turning the boat off and hopping off to tie the boat to a metal cross on the dock.
"Welcome to America!" Ichiro said melodramatically.
Kazu chuckled a bit before replying "Thanks." Kazu made his way into the cabin and started to retrieve his items as Ichiro busted into the cabin smiling before making his way to the door that Kazu had earlier found locked. Ichiro suspiciously unlocked the door with a key he withdrew from his back-left pocket and slipped inside before closing the door in a way that Kazu wouldn't be able to see inside. Kazu continued to collect his few belongings and picked his bag up before retreating to the exit door as Ichiro quickly exited the room and followed him. The two exited the boat and hopped onto the dock before walking toward shore. As they had neared the front of the dock, they were confronted by a man in an official looking uniform which Kazu had noticed had no emblem or logo on it. Being so, he could not identify the man's intentions by his looks. "Gentlemen. Please halt."
"Is there something wrong… Sir?" Kazu replied somewhat cautiously.
"Where are you coming from?"
Kazu started to speak but was abruptly stopped when Ichiro had crossed his arm across Kazu's chest. "We are coming from Japan. What is the problem here?"
“I'll need to see your papers. Passports, green cards, citizenship papers and such."
The two searched their pockets for the documents before handing them to the mysterious man. He took the documents and appeared to slowly examine each item before raising his head and handing the documents back to the two. "I'm sorry. We aren't allowing immigrants at this moment and you aren't qualified to enter America as right now."
"Surely you're mistaken. We have all the legal documents to permit our entrance to the US."
"At this given moment, you do not. However, you can get the certification to enter America if you pay a fee of three thousand dollars."
"Are you kidding me?! Like I said earlier; We have all of the required documents and certification to enter the US."
Ichiro picked up his bag before starting to bypass the man by walking past him and Kazu shortly followed.
The man held his hands out toward their chests, halting them before saying. "Woah, woah there! You two aren't going anywhere."
"Yes, we are. Get out of our way."
"Alright. You got two options out of this. The easy way, and the hard way. The easy way is to simply give me all the money you have on you right now. Or you can follow through with the hard way which I doubt you'd enjoy too much." Following his statement, the man lifted up his shirt to reveal a handgun tucked into his pants over his left thigh. Kazu dropped his bag as he looked down to the ground while chuckling a bit.
"Why are you laughing? Do you know what this is?! Or are you immigrant idiots that stupid?!" He was obviously confused and in turn, nervous.
Kazu continued to chuckle a bit before quickly halting and jumping up throwing a powerful kick straight into the man's chest. The man fell onto his back and tried to reach for his gun but was interrupted as Kazu jumped on top of him while throwing a flurry of punches toward the man's chest before delivering a powerful strike into his neck. The man was obviously knocked unconscious. Kazu reached for the man's firearm and removed it from his waistband before placing into his bag and picking it up.
"Let's go."
Ichiro was mildly shocked as he awkwardly said "Alright then."
The two followed the wooden walkway to the sidewalk and made their way into the city. "I know this small little place we can stay in for a little bit." Ichiro said as they walked down the city sidewalk admiring the scenery.
"Wonderful. Lead the way."

They eventually found themselves in front of a stubby run-down looking building in which they entered and then made their way up the stairs. After making it to the second floor they approached a man enclosed in a small room with a glass window equipped with a small microphone and opening. "We need a room."
"How many people?" The clerk said with his eyes fixated on some kind of magazine that was obviously focused on American media.
"Just two."
"How long?"
"Not sure yet. What's the weekly rate?"
"I can put you in a two bed apartment room for two-hundred and fifty at the cheapest."
"We'll take it." Ichiro reached in his pocket and slid a few bills through the opening before holding his hand out. The clerk placed a small bronze key in Ichiro's hand. The men walked to the stairs and climbed a flight before opening the door in the stairwell and walking down the hall.
"3C."
"Found it. Here it is."
“Wonderful!”
Ichiro approached the door and placed the key in the lock before turning and pushing the door in. They entered the room and scanned it judging its quality. The room had two small beds with clean-looking sheets and blankets, a love seat, three small doors, presumably two closets and a bathroom and a small kitchen area that was not walled off.
"Cozy."
"Quite."
Kazu dropped his bag next to one of the beds before collapsing onto it and drifting off into a well-needed slumber.


Re-Adjusting

Kazu slowly opened up his eyes as sunlight creeped its way in-between his eyelids causing him to squint. He groaned as he slowly sat up. He wiped his eyes while yawning before shifting his gaze from left to right examining the room as if he hand't known where he was. He looked out the curtain-less window next to his bed and peered out, studying the area outside. His gaze was captured by a large awning-styled sign overviewing a large street which stated "Welcome to Playton."
"Hm. Playton."
Kazu sighed as he stood up from the bed. He walked over to the closet and opened the door before stepping inside. He pulled the string for the light and then started to undress. He hung his clothes up on one side of the closet and stepped out. He made his way to the bathroom where he proceeded to remove his boxers and turn the water on. He reached his hand into the falling water. It was cold. He reached for the knob and turned it counter-clockwise hoping the water would become warmer. He felt the water once again. It wasn't hot, but it was acceptable. He stepped inside washed himself thoroughly quite quickly. He then turned the water off and dried himself before walking back into the room. Ichiro was sitting in his bed, leaning on the headboard reading a book. "Do you by chance have anything I can wear today? My suit is dirty."
"Sure. Just grab something out of my suitcase over there. The main large pocket." Ichiro pointed to the bag leaning on the wall next to the closet. Kazu walked over to the bag and unzipped it before peering inside. He reached inside to retrieve a red button-down shirt and black slacks. He slipped the clothes on and approached his bag. He unzipped the duffel bag and reached inside retrieving a small black satchel and throwing it over his shoulder. "Is there a currency exchange anywhere close?"
"Little Tokyo District, I think. It's not far from here. Walking distance. I can show you the way if you want."
"It's fine. I'll find it. Thanks"
Ichiro nodded in acknowledgment. Kazu exited the room and stopped by the clerk before leaving. "Where is the Little Tokyo District? How do I get there?"
"Exit the building and turn right. Keep walking until you find an area with asian decorations all around."
Kazu nodded. "Thanks."
He opened the door and stepped outside to see a thriving and active urban jungle. People filling the sidewalks, cars filling the roads, buildings filling the sky. He started walking toward Little Tokyo and pondered upon how similar Japan had been to America. Coffee shops, clothes outlets, department stores, apartment buildings. Not too different from any other large city. He finally approached a somewhat busy area with large black, green, and red archways fashioned into asian-themed decorations. Somewhat assigning people of asian descent to that area. He continued through the while scanning the establishments that called the district home. He approached a corner where he spotted a small building with a sign above it that read "NATIONAL CURRENCY EXCHANGE." He approached the door and walked inside to see no-one in line. He made his way through the security maze and finally confronted the teller. He nodded to the teller before placing the satchel on the counter. “I need to exchange a large amount of Japanese Yen into American currency.”
“Alright then. If you’d just hand me the currency, I’ll go to the back to the safe and exchange it.” Kazu opened up the satchel and placed eight stacks onto the counter and slid them toward the teller. She gathered the bills and walked to the back disappearing behind a wall. A few moments passed and she re-appeared with eight stacks of American bills before placing them on the counter. “There you go Sir. Have a good day!”
“That’s all there is to it?”
“That’s all there is to it!” She said with a warm smile.
“Thank you very much ma’am.” Kazu carefully placed the stacks of bills into his satchel and made his way outside. He stopped for a moment, looking left and right. He smiled briefly before carrying on west. He soon found himself near the docks where he searched for a directory or map of some sort. After a few minutes of searching for one, he simply asked the nearest bystander "Where's the dock shipping center, Sir?"
"Uh, I think it's that way" the man said as he pointed behind him.
"Thank you very much."
"Hey, no problem, man."
Kazu soon approached a small building that he assumed to be what he had been looking for seeing to it as there was a sign pointing to it that stated "Waterway Shipping." He entered and approached the teller before reaching into his back left pocket and placing a few folded papers on the counter. "My name is Ryukazu Akirota. I'm here to collect my car shipped from Japan." The lady nodded before unfolding the papers and examining them briefly. She then started typing on the computer behind the counter and quickly printed off a few more papers and a receipt. "Here you go, Sir. Take these papers down to Section A of the docks and hand the man in the blue jacket these papers. He'll take care of the rest." Kazu nodded. "Thank you very much ma'am." He exited the building and approached the sign near the door. "Sections A, B, and C - South. Sections D and E - North." Kazu started south. After about ten minutes, he found himself at a large open area with a giant container ship parked next to the dock. He could see the words "SECTION A SHIPPING PICKUP" fading on the side of the cranes that had scattered the area. He walked closer to ship and approached a small booth containing a man with a blue jacket on. He placed the papers on the counter and slid them closer to the man. The man skimmed through the papers before grabbing the walkie-talkie off of his belt and pressing the button and barking "Container AE57H9. I repeat, container AE57H9. Ready for direct dock pickup. Container transport permission granted." He placed the papers in a shredder next to him and exited the booth. "One Moment, Sir." After a few minutes, a crane carefully placed an orange shipping container directly on the dock. The man approached it and opened the lock before cracking the door open and disappearing into the darkness of the container. Kazu heard a very loud roar as the man started the car within and slowly drove it right up to Kazu. The car was a dark purple that wasn't too many shades away from blue. It was a piece of work. Black, carbon fiber hood and spoiler, full wide body kit, side-running exhaust pipes, hood scoop, roof scoop, the works. It was obvious there was a lot of money invested in the car. The man exited the car and held his hand out toward the seat as if he were a chauffeur welcoming a patron into his limo. "Here you go, Sir. Have a nice day."
"Thanks a lot, my friend." Kazu said before swiftly hopping into the vehicle, slamming the gas pedal and peeling off. Kazu decided to take a bit of a tour around the city before returning to the motel. He spent a half hour driving through the city before something caught his eye. He spotted a clothing shop in the Little Tokyo district. Not a department store or urban-wear store, but a suit shop - The Japanese Gentlemen. Shortly after passing it, he stopped and parked on the side of the road. He exited the car and proceeded into the store. Immediately after entering the shop, he was confronted by a classy looking Japanese male in a suit. "May I help you, Sir?"
"Hai." Kazu said as he nodded. The man smiled warmly and nodded before proceeding, "Aha. From Japan, I assume. Wonderful! Well welcome to an authentic Japanese establishment. Feel free to browse the store and if you find anything you like, just call out for me. The name's Takeo." Kazu nodded while smiling, "Arigato, Takeo. I will definitely do so." Kazu scanned the suit styles in the store a bit and noticed a few he was quite interested in. "Takeo!" Takeo soon approached Kazu with a measuring belt around his neck. "Yes, Sir?"
"I'd like a few suits. A number of them caught my eye." Kazu pointed at a beige suit, two black suits, and a light grey suit. "I like those. How much are they?"
"Well three of those are the same brand and we have a special going on at the moment. Buy two, get one free. Only on the same brand though so that works out just about perfectly. The suits are originally priced at three-hundred though. And that does not include shoes or belts. However, it does include dress shirts and ties for each suit."
"Wonderful! I'll take them."
"Alright, Sir. If you'd just take a step over there in front of the mirror, I'll get you measured for the tailoring." Takeo plucked one of the suits off of the rack and walked toward the mirror, where Kazu had already made his way to.
"Alright. Put this jacket on, and these pants. Use those dressing rooms over there." he said pointing to the back left corner of the store. Kazu took the hanger from Takeo and made his way to the dressing room. Not too long after, he exited the room and made his way back to the mirror. "If you'd just raise your arms up to your sides and spread your legs a bit, I'll measure you up and mark you the suit off." Kazu did so and Takeo started to measure his waist and legs before folding multiple parts of the clothes and pinning them up and marking them with some kind of marker. "So did I assume correctly?"
"You did. I'm from Hikiban. I'm Kazu by the way."
"Nice to meet you Kazu. It's always a pleasure to see another person of Oriental decent going Little Tokyo."
"I'm sure it is. I'm not sure how things will work out here though. I actually just came here from Japan."
"Well if you need anything, Little Tokyo is a community. A family of sorts. There are plenty jobs to be had here as well."
"Thank you. I very well may take you up on that offer sooner than I expect to."
"Alright. You're all finished. I'll get those suits tailored for you and you should be able to pick them up in about four hours."
"Thank you very much Takeo. I'll see you very soon." Kazu went back to the dressing room and changed back into his clothes. He then handed the hanger back to Takeo and nodded to him. Takeo handed him a receipt and he then made his way to the register. He handed the receipt to the cashier and pulled a few bills out of his pocket before placing them on the table. The cashier counted out the money and handed Kazu his change before saying "You got four suits. Go on head back to the back-right corner and grab four dress shirts to go with them as well as four ties." Kazu nodded and made his way to the shelves in the back. "Hm." Kazu said as he pondered on which clothes to select. After a few moments of debating with himself, Kazu left the store with crimson, black, and two white dress shirts as well as a crimson, white, and two black ties. He made his way back to his car and placed the bag full of clothes in the passenger seat before taking off. He drove toward the motel while pondering on Takeo's explanation of Little Tokyo. "A family of sorts." That sounds all too familiar, Kazu thought. There's no way this district survives in one-hundred percent legal economy. No way. It seemed authentic though. The stores and such. They seemed as if they were actually in Japan. Yet everything here is Americanized to some degree, except for this area, he thought.

He parked in a crowded lot a block away from the motel and made his way to his room. He entered the room to find Ichiro not there. He placed the bags on the ground and decided to watch some TV. He laid down on the bed and hit the power button on the remote that was resting upon the nightstand. He flipped through the channels, trying to find something interesting besides the local news. The entertainment in America was much different than back home in Japan. The news had an unfortunate habit of blabbering about every bad incident or accident they could while giving almost no air-time to anything positive. Did people enjoy the negative being spewed at them every day at four? Oh well. It's not like Kazu cared much about it anyway. He enjoyed the comedy channel more anyway. He had always been a fan of stand-up. Although some of the jokes he did not understand seeing to it as they were directed to an American. It was still more entertaining than the news. About an hour after he arrived home, Ichiro walked in the door carrying a paper bag with the words The Sushi Spot written on the side in both English and Japanese. "Want some sushi?"
"Sure. Arigato, Ichiro."
"My pleasure. Here, take this. They call it a California roll here." Ichiro handed him a small box with a plastic lid to Kazu along with a set of chopsticks. "Ah. Americanized Japanese food. Wonderful!" Kazu sarcastically said with a smile before chuckling a bit. He popped the lid off of the box and ate a piece of the roll slowly as to judge the taste. "Not bad. Not bad at all. It's actually quite good. I'm assuming it's from a place within Little Tokyo?"
"Hai." Ichiro nodded. "The Sushi Spot."
"Wonderful. Thanks again, Ichiro."
"Ah. Don't mention it."
Kazu eventually finished the roll and threw the remains away in the kitchen. "I need to go pick up a few suits. Would you like to come?"
"No thanks. I'm going to catch up on some sleep."
"Alright. See you in the morning then." Kazu left the motel and drove to The Japanese Gentleman. As he approached the building and pulled on the door, it wouldn't budge. Locked. Yet there were people inside. Out of nowhere, Takeo came into view walking toward the door. He unlocked the door and opened it for Kazu. "Come on in, Kazu."
"Domo-Arigato." Kazu said as he nodded. "Your suits are ready. Give me one moment." Takeo disappeared into the back of the store and Kazu leaned on the counter while discretely examining the men who had congregated in the left side of the store. They all seemed of Asian descent, primarily Japanese. A few of them, he had seen earlier in the store. He assumed these men were Takeo's co-workers. Takeo soon reappeared with four suit bags hanging from his left hand. He held the bags out to Kazu with a smile. "Now don't hesitate to come and talk to me if you need a job or anything Kazu. I can help you out. It may be a rough start but it's something."
Kazu nodded. "Actually, I was planning on taking you up on that offer. I'm going to need a job eventually, and I thought, what better place to get one than here?"
Takeo's face light up with warmth as he smiled to Kazu's statement. "Wonderful! Can you be here tomorrow morning at, oh say, eight?"
"Yeah. That's fine."
"Good. Be here and uh, dress well." Takeo whispered, smiling.
"Alright. See you then, Takeo. Thanks again, my friend."
Kazu walked to his car and placed the bags in the back seat before driving off toward the motel. He tried to enter his room and organize his suits quietly as to not wake Ichiro. After hanging his suits in the closet, he undressed himself and crawled into bed for the night.


Opportunities, Opportunities

Kazu awoke to a news show blabbering about what he assumed to be some kind of celebrity gossip. He yawned and sat up before stretching his arms out and rubbing his eyes. After opening them, he notices Ichiro standing next to the stove cooking. From the smell, he concluded Ichiro had been cooking eggs and ham. Good thing it isn't bacon, he thought. He couldn't stand bacon. Suddenly he remembered his appointment at eight. He darted his eyes toward the nightstand and inspected the clock. 6:18AM. "Whew. Good." He sighed and slowly raised himself out of bed to get dressed. As he buttoned up his shirt, he pondered on how the meeting may go. He hadn't directly encountered a Yakuza based in America. He didn't know how they conducted themselves, although Takeo seemed nice enough, but deception is an art that many are talented at. He decided to retrieve the gun he had taken earlier and tuck it in his slacks before putting his jacket on. "Want some food?" Ichiro said in between the sounds of a spatula scraping the pan. Ichiro's statement caught Kazu off guard and knocked him out of his state of thought. "Huh? Oh, sure. Thanks."
"You feelin' alright?"
"Yeah. Just thinking. I have an interview for a job in Little Tokyo in about an hour and a half."
"Dang. Haven't even been here forty-eight hours and you're already set up for a job. You work well, my friend."
"Heh. I like to keep busy, I guess."
"Well come grab a plate before your interview. Remember, breakfast the most important meal of the day."
Kazu walked over toward the stove and removed a paper plate from a package that had been laying on the counter before holding it out toward Ichiro. He scooped some eggs up and poured them out onto Kazu's plate before doing the same with a piece of ham. "Thanks. I appreciate it."
"No problem!" Ichiro said with a smile. Kazu chuckled a bit. Kazu sat down on the love-seat and started to eat while watching the TV. After a few minutes of watching the show, he noticed they had talked about either positive or meaningless things. Who wanted to hear what shoe brand was most popular? However, they did give some airtime to stories that weren't based out of an incident or accident. There was a story about a twelve-year-old boy who had saved his mother from drowning. At least it wasn't blabbering on for an hour about how some youth killed a person and how the cause of it was the violent nature of media, video games, television, and how all of these things were corrupting the minds of the public making them all violent, drug-dealing, selfish, blood thirsty killers. From what he had heard so far, the political media aired on TV was a joke as well in his opinion. Focusing on miniscule issues while there are tensions with other countries who are equipped with the means to wage full-on nuclear war with the US and very likely be able to escape the fray with the status of victor and in turn, the dominating force. “It is seven-nineteen A.M. in the morning and sixty-seven degrees.”
“...Dangit. I need to go!” Kazu said, realizing he had been caught in thought once again. “I have to get out of here Ichiro. I’ll see you later.”
“Alright. Good luck, my friend.” Ichiro said, waving while Kazu walked out the door. After making
his way to his car, he retrieved the firearm from his waistband and examined it a bit. It was a Beretta M9 that was painted a matte black with a cherry wood handle. It was surprisingly beautiful but it could very likely be a low quality firearm. He wouldn’t be sure until he used it. Even though he hadn’t known the quality of the weapon, he considered himself fortunate that he obtained it; especially so soon after his arrival. He reached to the passenger seat lifted the cushion up. He unlocked a small compartment under the cushion and placed the pistol inside before closing it and driving off toward The Japanese Gentleman. Upon walking inside, he saw Takeo in the back of the store talking to a co-worker. He approached him but before he could say anything, Takeo patted him on the back and said “Let’s go.” Takeo walked him to the back of the store where they entered a hallway that led to a red door. “Go inside, talk to the guy behind the desk. You’ll be fine.”
“Alright. If you say so.” Kazu slowly opened the door and walked inside to see a mid-aged Vietnamese man wearing a straight black suit and sitting at a rather plain looking empty desk. “Have a seat.” the man barked.
“Thank you, Sir.”
“The name is Vinh. Not Sir. What’s your name?”
“Ryukazu Akirota. But everyone calls me Kazu.”
“Alright then Kazu. I presume you’re here for a job of some sort?”
“Yes, Vinh. Takeo told me th-...”
“Ah. Takeo. He told you that you’d get a job here? Hm. He doesn’t often warm up to people so fast. You must be special. But see, I’m not Takeo. So why should I hire you? Whatever Takeo sees, I don’t.”
“Well, Vinh, I have quite a bit of experience in business. I’ve actually headed a few businesses myself. And the-..”
“Why are the businesses past tense? If you ran them into the ground, I don’t think I’d be very fortuitous in hiring you.”
“Oh no, no. I did not run them into the ground, per say. It’s a long story but the businesses were quite successful. I hope they will find their revival here in America soon.”
“Ah. So you’re from Japan, as I assumed. What did you do there?”
“Well, as I said before, I headed a few businesses. I was a technological engineer and inventor, restaurant owner, professional driver, martial artist, tattoo artist, and a few other things.”
“Well damn Kazu. You sound like a f****n’ superhero.”
“I’ll take that as a compliment.” Kazu chuckled slightly.
“I’ll give you a few days. If you do well, you’ll stay; if you don’t do so bad, you’ll leave. Understand?”
“Hai.” Kazu nodded.
“Good. Now get out of here. You start tomorrow morning at seven.”
“Thank you, Vinh.” Kazu nodded and quickly raised himself from the chair and departed. He was greeted at the end of the hallway by a smiling Takeo. “So?”
Kazu nodded.
“Wonderful!” Takeo smiled and patted Kazu on the back once again.
“Listen. Why don’t you come to the Sushi Spot tonight and celebrate?”
“Uh, alright. I won’t know anyone, but sure.”
“It’s fine. It’s no big deal. You’ll meet people. So it’ll be fun. Nine o’ Clock?”
“Alright. Sounds good to me! I’ll be there.”
Kazu smiled and departed.


A Family?


TO BE CONTINUED...... I am taking suggestions for the name of the fictional city in the USA where Kazu has arrived. It is a city where you would find many different crime organizations of varied nationalities. I am also taking ALL suggestions for Japanese names. Male and female. Either leave your suggestions in the review sections or email it to [email protected]

© 2012 Garrett Fitzgerald


Author's Note

Garrett Fitzgerald
NOTE: /PLEASE/ point out and post corrections to anything you think is wrong or sounds weird. If you feel as if I did not cover enough of his story, tell me! Also feel free to ask questions about the story!

Also, Instead of Gerndale, I am either looking for a better name for a fictional city or a non-fiction city in the USA where you'd be able to find crime syndicates of many different nationalities and gangs of many nationalities as well.

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460 Views
Added on June 17, 2012
Last Updated on July 10, 2012
Tags: Japanese, Action, Gun, Guns, Drugs, Drug, crime, syndicate, organized, asian, man, clan, yakuza, mafia, arms, deal, dealer, dealing, money, corrupt, corruption, gang, gangs

Author

Garrett Fitzgerald
Garrett Fitzgerald

Cary, NC



About
Well currently, I'm a seventeen year old boy. I'm turning eighteen next month (July 18th) so I'm sure I'll have to update this quite soon. I have multiple interests. Some of which are the following: l.. more..