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Tales of the Kunoichi – Chapter six

* A tale involving the “other” side of Miss Hermit. Feel free to comment *

I was studying in my room when the signal bell rang. I had installed a windup clockwork from the pigeon coop on the roof to the downstairs to let me know when a bird arrived. It also would close the coop door and dispense fresh water and feed since the bird is usually hungry and thirsty.

“Tasha, please check and see if that is a Temple pigeon.” I figured that someone finally got back to me by now. I wondered who wrote to me first.

Tasha floats down through the ceiling, a normal occurrence here but I am sure it would certainly spook the neighbors, if I had any.

“Mi’Lady, it doesn’t have the usual markings. Could it be a wild one?”

“That is odd. I will go up and check it in a minute.”

I finish reading the passage in the scrolls about spirits who hide from others and go up to the roof. Well, it is a pigeon but not one of ours. Then I see the two scrolls, one on each leg. The larger one of them has the letter “P” written on it. That must be Father. I wonder who has written the other? Tasha is correct in saying this is not a Temple pigeon also. I will let it rest up for a day or so and release it to return home. I carefully remove each scroll especially Father’s. You see the “P” stands for contact poison. To touch it is to die.

Returning downstairs, I neutralize the poison embedded in the rice paper and read that one first. Father knows my predicament and I am sure he will have something to say. I want to save the other for last as it might contain recall orders from the senior monk.

Daughter;

I received your scroll a few days ago and I can honestly say that the clan is not conducting any operations on the local Yakuza gangs. I can not say what the Temple is doing but I think they are not happy that an unused nearby shrine has been taken over by them and converted into a gambling den. The senior monk says not much more than that but perhaps you have channels within the Temple that I do not have. Congratulations on your kill of that samurai. How cowardly can they be. I can not say if that he was connected to the local gangs without seeing the body. But then, I figured you would get rid of it in a sensible fashion so coming to see you would serve no purpose at this time.

I doubt that they will try to send another member of the gang over to try again, it’s not their style to repeat a tactic when it fails. That does not mean they would not use another method. Have you talked to the spirit of the dead samurai yet? He might offer some help since his obligation to the Yakuza is now broken by death.

I shall send a carton of pigeons by local steamer as soon as I can. I will also refrain from declaring war on the Yakuza for now. No need to start a fight until we have to.

This bird came from a relay point station. I did that so it would approach from a different direction. Release it when it recovers.

Stay safe daughter. Watch your back and use the spirits to protect you.

Father

I roll up the tiny scroll and ponder on Father’s words. Nothing concerning the clan but the Temple is upset about a shrine? I also get the feeling that the senior monk did not get his scroll. That makes me feel easier about opening the second one…

Dearest sister miko;

The monks are having me write this as my handwriting is clearer than theirs when writing so tiny. Such old hands as theirs just can not do it any longer. I let the senior monk know we got your scroll. I think he was just as confused about your request as we were. But you asked what is happening around here, so here it goes.

The local Yakuza have taken over an old shrine east of the Temple and are using it as a place to conduct their illegal games. The older monks are in a terrible fit over this and have been marching over there and praying VERY loudly for the Kami to reclaim their shrine and to eject the gang. The local people, who were going there a lot, are concerned that the disturbance will upset the Gods and are staying away. Just the day before I am writing this one of the gang’s enforcers shoved dear old Shoro to the ground as he was praying. That got the people mad and they beat the enforcer with sticks. I fear that the Yakuza will do something to repay the Temple for this insult.

The local government is turning a blind eye to this and proclaims that this is an internal matter to the Temple and that they will not get involved. The monks believe that the officials were paid off not to bother the gang.

Now the papers are reporting the fight and blame the Yakuza boss for ordering the attack on Shoro. I fear this is going to get worse but the monks are staying put and saying this shrine is holy ground and needs to have the stain of gambling removed from it at once.

I am so glad that you are so far away from this Iyou-kun. Please stay in the west and be safe.

Miko Belldandy ^.^

I slowly set the scroll down. I wonder if the shrine attack and my attack are related? Does the Yakuza think that since I am alone in Babbage I am an easy target for their wrath? As I sit in my chair Mac comes in and stands before me.

“What news Mac? Any sightings of him yet?”

“None Miss Hermit. It’s like he was never here. I have never seen the like of this before. I can always find someone when I set my mind to it.”

I lean back in my chair, “I find this really odd myself. Have you heard of anything, anything at all?”

Mac scratches his head, “Well, the only thing a tad different in the stories I got about a ghost all wrapped in rags saying he’s a hero-like.”

Hero….A hero…Suddenly it hits me!!

“Mac, he isn’t saying he’s a hero. That’s his name only it is really pronounced Hiro. Where is he?”

“Sorry Miss Hermit. I don’t know Japanese that good. The story is that he is floating around a small grave yard up in Academy. Do you know where they buried the body? You said that it was found by Miss Book and her friend.”

“I don’t know either Mac. Stay up in Academy and see if you can hear him speaking. You know how the name sounds now that I spoke it?”

“Yes Ma’am. If he’s there I’ll find him.” Mac flashes back through the wall and northeast towards the Academy district.

Hiro…now we have the first name. Can I make the invocation with just that much? I must check with Miss Hienrichs where he was buried. I hope we can contain him. I have quite a few questions to ask…

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3 Comments

  1. Tepic Harlequin Tepic Harlequin March 4, 2011

    Tepic sits back, repleat, against the inside of his crate home.  Now vole was good, there can be no denying that, you can’t go wrong with a good vole, but the occasional plump pidgeon was a nice treat!  He had been lucky, practicing shying stomes up on th Palisade Wall whne this one had landed right by his target – too good an iportunity, and in a trice there was supper, just ready for plucking and claning…..

    Bit strange though, there had been a little roll of paper tied to it’s leg, like it was taking a message, and there was marks on it, like little pictures, a bit like the stuff Miss Hermit put on those lanterns she was giving out.  Still, that didn’t change the taste of the bird, which was sweet and jucy, but…… who does write in white on black paper?

    • Emerson Lighthouse Emerson Lighthouse March 4, 2011

      *Emerson Lighthouse’s jaw drops in shock… poor pigeon!  Emerson hopes, at least, that Tepic takes special care should that scroll be marked with the letter ‘P’*

  2. Queer Hermit Queer Hermit March 4, 2011

    Not to be concerned Mister Lighthouse.  Father’s scroll arrived safety.  Perhaps Master Tepic should consider himself lucky that a relay point pigeon was used for the return message.  But then, kitsune usually are extremely lucky to start with.

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