Chapter Three: Whoops:
March 11th, 1983.
Kato found himself woken up in the middle of the night by someone pounding at his front door. The older man walked down the hall, mumbling in aggravation.
“Hold your damn horses!” Kato yelled. “I’m coming! I’m coming!” He made it to the front door and slid it open. An eighteen year old boy stood in the rain looking inside. He looked like a high school senior. His blackish brown spiky hair had been neatly cut to his collar. The boy still had on his school uniform. In his arms he held a spelling little ten-day-old baby. This boy held an umbrella over the both of them. Kato looked at him with bags under his eyes.
“What do you want?” he mumbled half-asleep.
“Please sir!” his guest pleaded, “My daughter and I need a place to stay for the night! Can you put us up?” Kato stared on half out of it. His eyes turned to the baby. She looked so little and cute with her pink cheeks. The baby slept peacefully wrapped up in her little yellow and white blanket. Just seeing her stirred something in Kato’s frozen heart. The boy reached into his pocket and pulled out a fist-full of yen.
“Here,” he said, “I’ve got the money!” Kato looked on in silence as he kept his eyes on the baby.
May 8th, 2009.
Anna awoke the next morning to two big surprises. The first one stared her right in the face. The woman found her red backpack sitting before her. A note had been taped to it. Anna took it and read it. “You left this!” was all it said. She looked at the note front and back. No name at all. Anna looked at her backpack again. Something seemed off here. How did her backpack get all the way out here? Who brought it here and why? Anna began to think it was possibly a trap. She definitely decided to check.
A sound outside Daisuke’s office distracted her thoughts. She heard footsteps, not to be mistaken. Anna crept over to the door and peeked out crack she opened. A man stood at the foot of the hall talking to a woman. Judging by his fancy suit and clipboard, he was a real estate agent.
/Kimoto Manor is being sold?/, she thought. Oh, this just took many steps backwards. Anna noticed the realtor and the woman walking closer.
/Oh crap!/, she thought. The woman knew that she had to make herself scarce or she would get caught. She used her memory of Daisuke’s office to hide.
Come on/, Anna thought, /Think genius, you practically spend years studying papa’s office! Try to remember everything! The answer came to her right after that train of thought.
/Of course/, she thought. Anna walked across the room to the wall. She felt along the walls for the hidden sliding door. This was where she hid to spy on Daisuke when she was a kid. The woman found, slid open the “secret closet” as she called it, and slipped inside with her backpack in hand.
Outside in the hall, the realtor showed a young woman and her little daughter around the Manor. For a whole decade, Eastern Noel had been trying sale this manor. Due to the stigma attached to it however, there had been no takers. Everyone believed Daisuke’s death cursed the Manor with the Eda-Kimoto legacy. The realtor became obsessed with selling the property. He had to jump through many hoops to do it. His cleaner girlfriend would really want sex and a ring after this last attempt. He called her in the wee hours just to scrub out the leftover blood in the tatami mats one more time. She really wasn’t happy about that.
“You can’t even get anyone to come out and look at the property!” she nagged him. Her boyfriend refused to give up. This woman and her daughter were his last chance. The realtor took the girls to Daisuke’s office. He slid open the door.
“And here,” he said, “Is something like an office area.” The mother and daughter looked around. Their realtor waited as he fought to keep up the cheerful look on his face.
“Pretty nice, huh?” he asked. Anna waited as the man went on describing Daisuke’s old office. She couldn’t see the people.
/Don’t buy the house! Don’t buy the house! Don’t buy the house!/, the woman thought over and over again. The realtor walked over to Anna’s wall.
“Oh, check out these walls!” he boomed. “They don’t make them like this anymore!” Anna began to panic.
/Don’t open the door! Don’t open the door!/, she pleaded in her mind. Instead, the realtor knocked the door. A low hollow sounded echoed in the room. The realtor smiled at his potential clients impressed.
“Shall we go on?” he asked. Anna breathed out as the people left the room. The Kimoto Manor was really for sell. Anna lowered her head in stress. She hadn’t expected this at all.
The realtor took mother and daughter back to the front door. He smiled as the nervous cracks in his cheerful mask began to show.
“So,” he said. “What do you think? Is the house to your liking?” The little girl’s eyes lit up.
“Yeah!” she cheered. The realtor relaxed behind his upbeat exterior. There was one yes there, now for the young mother. She frowned at him sternly. The realtor fought to keep his nerves intact.
“What’s wrong?” he asked. The mother looked at him sharply.
“Pretty good,” she said, “But… something keeps bugging me about this house.” The realtor’s confident poker face began chipping away.
“What is it?” he asked. The young mother narrowed her dark brown eyes at the realtor behind her silver-framed glasses.
“I know Japan’s economy is bad right now,” she pointed out, “But it’s almost impossible for a house as big as this to be sold at such a low price like it is. Okay, what’s the deal? Leaky pipes? Hidden damages? Terminates?” The realtor began to sweat.
Oh no!/, he thought, /I’m going to lose this deal! The mother an icy look flashed in her eyes.
“Come on,” she insisted, “Tell me the truth. If I stuck with a money pit, I will sue the shit out of you and your company!”
“Mom, calm down!” her daughter yelled as she tugged on her blue jeans. The woman calmed down and went silent. The realtor swallowed hard and dropped his shoulders. No way out now; it was time to tell the truth.
“Okay,” he confessed, “Ten years ago, the previous owner was murdered on Halloween night. Rumor has it that his own family, the Eda-Kimoto clan, killed him as a blood sacrifice. Some believe that this house is cursed because of that.” The mother raised an eyebrow at him.
“That all?” she asked.
“Yes!” the realtor yelped. Silence passed before the young mother’s eyes lit up brightly.
“That is so cool!” she cried. “I’ll take it!” The realtor looked at her surprised and puzzled.
“R-Really?” he asked with big eyes. The woman grabbed him by the hands.
“Of course!” she shouted. “I love the paranormal! This house will be perfect!” The realtor stared at her at first, but then he gave her a real smile.
“Done!” the realtor said. “The house is yours!” They bowed after the woman let go of him. The realtor felt like flying. He finally managed to sell Kimoto manor after all. Good news for him, but bad news for Anna.
Anna wasn’t the one with problems. Tsuzuki realized that he was screwed. He ended up chewed out by Konoe for yesterday’s turn of events. Not only did he bring Anna back from the dead, but he used a Hell Stone to do it.
“Ju-Oh-Cho’s duty is to bring the souls to Meifu and make sure they stay dead!” Konoe yelled. “Kimoto-san is supposed to be here, not back in Chijou! What were you thinking?!?” Tsuzuki lowered his head.
“I was talked into it,” Tsuzuki said with a nervous chuckle. The rage in Konoe’s eyes began to flare.
“And how did you manage that one?” he asked. Tsuzuki bit his lower lip.
“It’s kind of a difficult story…” he mumbled. Hisoka frowned and rolled his eyes.
Idiot/, he thought, /I should’ve come with you. The boy knew something like this would happen. Konoe frowned at them both.
“The worst part is you used a Hell Stone!” he barked. “How the hell did you come across one of those?!?”
“Well there was a man there who claimed that he was a friend to the friend,” Tsuzuki did his best to explain, “He offered it to me as a way to get her to help out with the case.” Konoe and Hisoka turned their attention to him. The chief narrowed his eyes at the oldest Shinigami before him.
“Does this man know anything about you or this investigation?” Konoe asked in a sharp tone. Tsuzuki shook his head as he shrugged.
“He didn’t say, but I figured now that she’s alive again,” he said in a pinch, “We could use her to help us out in some way even if she doesn’t know who killed her.” Konoe raised an eyebrow at him.
“And how do you plan to do that?” he asked. Tsuzuki froze as he ran out of options to save himself serve discipline. Konoe frowned at him.
“I will go to Enma-Daioh to deal with you and her later,” he warned. Now, Tsuzuki was stuck guarding her as punishment for the time being. Was it really worth all of that?
Damn it!/, Tsuzuki thought as he ate his apple pie. /Why did this case have to get so hard? This was all Kato’s fault! No, this was all Kato and Tsuzuki’s own fault. The Shinigami got distracted by her greenish-brown eyes that he hadn’t seen in so long.
Suddenly, Tsuzuki noticed someone sitting next to him in the café. He slowly looked up and saw none other than Kato sitting next to him. He seemed to be smirking to himself about something he found rather amusing. Tsuzuki glared at him crossly.
That bastard!/, he thought. /He put me in this mess! Damn him!
“Good afternoon!” the barista greeted him, “How may I help you?”
“Yes,” Kato said, “I would like an order of freshly made green tea rare cheesecake to go, please, darling.” The barista’s cheeks turned a light shade of pink.
“O-Of course, sir!” she stammered out. The young barista got to work right away and gave the cooks the order. Kato smiled to himself.
/Such an easy cute doll!/, he thought. The man turned to his left and saw Tsuzuki glaring at him still. Iwao smiled at him.
“Well hello Tsuzuki-san!” he greeted the Shinigami, “So nice to see you again!” Tsuzuki became serious and bitter.
“You bastard!” his hissed under his breath, “You nearly got me fired!” Kato smiled as he completely turned around to his “friend.”
“What’s a little conflict between bringing back someone dear to you?” he asked. “Beauty and love come with a little pain. You’ll forget that your boss was even angry with you about Anna-chan!”
“Little conflict?!?” Tsuzuki yelled with a red face, “Who the hell are you and why do you care so much about Kimoto-san?” Kato smiled at him as he put up his hand to calm down the Shinigami.
“Twenty-six years ago,” he said, “An eighteen year old boy came to my door late one rainy night. He had a ten day old baby in his arms. This boy asked me if I would put him and his daughter up for the night. He even tried to pay me for lodging—probably about two months worth of his paychecks.
“I looked at that little baby after he asked this of me. I couldn’t really explain it myself at the time, but I felt great pity for her. So, I told the baby’s father to keep his money and he could stay as long as he liked.” Tsuzuki looked at him oddly.
“I don’t get it,” he said. “Why are you telling me this?” Kato had a dreamy look in his eyes as he shrugged at him.
“That boy was the father of the woman that you resurrected,” he answered. Tsuzuki’s eyes grew big in surprise. Kato’s lips curved into a catlike at him.
“Surprised?” he asked. “It is the truth, after all.” The Shinigami sat there with all words lost to him. The barista returned with the older man’s cheesecake. Kato gave her a charming, flirtatious smile.
“Thanks, darling!” he said. The man took his boxed-up cake and gave her a huge amount of money.
“This is for me and my friend here,” he said, pointing at Tsuzuki. Both barista and Shinigami looked up at him with big, surprised eyes.
“S-Sure!” the barista exclaimed with flushed cheeks. She took the money and got out the change. The young barista began to hand him the change, but Kato held up his hand.
“Keep the change,” he said. The man and barista bowed. As Kato gracefully left, Tsuzuki watched his back. More red flags shot up about that guy. He would now have to keep a good watch on Kato and protect Anna from the Eda-Kimoto clan.
/Damn it, the work and trouble just keep piling up!/, he cursed himself. Yet, Anna seemed to make it worth it.
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