Chapter 18:


The Forbidden and the Gifted

[5:51 a.m., August 9th 2048, St. Petersburg, Russia. Hachiro, Daisuke and Natsumi wait in the arrivals section of St. Petersburg’s airport, watching the big board, as a flight from Shanghai flashes with the sign *Cleared Immigration*. Daisuke looks down at Natsumi’s phone, texting the leader of the reinforcements, who were arriving on a separate flight an hour later (Ryo landed earlier, and separately from both groups with his group of three other men). The arrival doors open, with Shin and Naomi being the first two to be seen from the doors, and Natsumi rushes towards them]Bookmark here

Natsumi: Guys!Bookmark here

Naomi: Nats!Bookmark here

Natsumi: Naomi! How’ve you been?Bookmark here

Naomi: Pretty good. Pretty tired after such a long flight. When’d you two get in?Bookmark here

Hachiro [From behind]: You forgetting about me, Mi?Bookmark here

Naomi: Oh yeah, you went with them to ruin their alone time in England!Bookmark here

Hachiro: Well yes, but actually…Bookmark here

Naomi: I don’t wanna hear no excuses from you! You know what you did!Bookmark here

Hachiro: Blame Rina! She sent me! [Pauses, then looks at Natsumi and Daisuke] And you two wouldn’t have even gotten to see Lockwood if not for me!Bookmark here

Natsumi: Huh? What’s that supposed to mean?Bookmark here

Hachiro: Don’t you remember how idiotic both of you looked outside the doors? Those guards would’ve kicked your dumbasses out, you know?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Not my fault – blame Dais.Bookmark here

Daisuke: Huh? How are you gonna pin this on me?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Well, technically speaking, you were the most useless of the three of us in England.Bookmark here

Daisuke: HUH?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Hachi, don’t you agree?Bookmark here

Hachiro: Well, I can’t really debate that one can I?Bookmark here

Natsumi [To Daisuke]: See?Bookmark here

Daisuke: I thought you’d be sticking up for me!Bookmark here

Naomi [Tilts her head, then looks at Daisuke]: Dais, is this true?Bookmark here

Daisuke: No, no, no Mi, they’re lying!Bookmark here

Natsumi: How exactly are we lying pre-tell?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well…Bookmark here

[The shot pans back towards the doors, and Martial, Drift and Shin stand together]Bookmark here

Martial: Who’re these guys? I’d assume one of them is the guy I talked to on the phone – but what about the other two? I presume one of ‘em’s Natsumi, but I don’t know the other one.Bookmark here

Shin [Points to Hachiro]: Yeah, that one’s the one from the phone call. Hachiro’s his name.Bookmark here

Martial: He a combat guy?Bookmark here

Shin: Kinda. He isn’t really a hand-to-hand type of guy; he specializes in long distance combat. I’m surprised you didn’t know that.Bookmark here

Martial: Please, I don’t know all the info on you guys. I just know what I know, that’s it. Bookmark here

Shin: Fair point, we do keep a lot of shit under wraps. [Pauses] The girl though, yeah, she’s the one I was telling you about on the plane. She’s Natsumi, our main negotiator. She’s good at the shit eh?Bookmark here

Martial: I’ve heard rumors of someone in your inner circles being a wizard like that – I’d heard her name tied to that but I never really based anything on that. Hey though, that’s a hell of an asset to have for you guys eh? Who knows, if this chump [Lightly punches Drift in the stomach] didn’t talk to me and she did instead, you guys probably could’ve gotten a better deal out of me eh?Bookmark here

Drift: Oh fuck off, you barely cost pennies anyway you  wanker. Bookmark here

Martial [Shrugs]: Is what it is, I guess.Bookmark here

Shin [To Martial, pointing to Daisuke]: The last one’s Daisuke. He’s kinda a jack of all trades, although he’s good at keeping track of expenses and making sure we got our policies in order. Although, he can throw hands pretty well too.Bookmark here

Martial: Ah interesting, interesting. So, this is the majority of Eastern then?Bookmark here

Shin: More or less, yeah. Bookmark here

Martial: I’m surprised all of you guys could afford to come out here though.Bookmark here

Shin: To be fair, I didn’t think Rina was gonna come with us, but it’s fine. Takuya back home can handle all the information that’s coming in, and we’ll just get onto any minor cases whenever we get back. There hasn’t been anything too major over there in a while, and hell, we don’t often get a lead like this onto an international agency.Bookmark here

Martial: Fair point man. I’m intrigued by Katarov though and whatever the hell his gift is. Sounds sci-fiy and weird as all hell. Bookmark here

Shin: Man, I don’t even care. I wanna kill that bastard.Bookmark here

Martial: Oh yeah, I know, I know. But shit, doesn’t the idea of gifts and all that shit make you question shit? Like I’m out here thinking to myself – this world is crazy man. I mean shit, I’m down for it though – life would just get even more exciting. Bookmark here

Shin: I honestly can’t think of that now. Maybe once this moron is dead and gone, maybe.Bookmark here

Martial: You really wanna shove a knife down his throat, eh?Bookmark here

Drift [To Martial]: That’s his only goal. That’s been his only goal. Bookmark here

Shin: Yup. And I won’t stop till enough of his blood is spilled so that I could paint a canvas.Bookmark here

Martial: Well shit, let’s hope that happens now then eh? Bookmark here

Shin: Oh, you bet your ass it’ll happen now. Bookmark here

Drift [To Martial]: You don’t know shit on what his gift is though eh?Bookmark here

Martial: No shot. All I know is that he is gifted. Gifted enough to have taken down your brother too, nonetheless. Bookmark here

Shin: As much as I love my brother and I know how strong he was – he was only one guy. This time we’ve got an army coming for him. [Pauses] Wait, Natsumi!Bookmark here

Natsumi [Turns away from talking to Naomi and the others]: Yo!Bookmark here

Shin: How’d the talks go?Bookmark here

Natsumi: They went great!Bookmark here

Shin: Really?Bookmark here

Natsumi: We’re 100k in the hole, but we’ve got backup of forty-five men.Bookmark here

Shin [Confused]: Wait… you snagged forty-five guys from them? Really? Bookmark here

Natsumi: Yeah.Bookmark here

Shin [Looks to a bewildered Drift]: Man, there’s no way.Bookmark here

Drift: She’s special ain’t she?Bookmark here

Shin: Tell me about it. Ayo Dais, you got a keeper, eh?Bookmark here

Daisuke [Shakes his head]: I know, I know.Bookmark here

Shin [To Natsumi]: How’re we gonna keep track of em though and know when they get here and all that stuff?Bookmark here

Natsumi: They got our number, so we’ll just direct them whenever we find out where we’re supposed to be going. By the way, do y’all have any leads on that?Bookmark here

Shin [To Karina]: Rina!Bookmark here

Karina [Talking with Ashe, Kohaku and Electra]: Yeah, what you moron?Bookmark here

Shin: Wow, no need to be so rude!Bookmark here

Karina: Says you!Bookmark here

Shin: Anyway, anyway, you got any information on where we’ve gotta go now? Takuya should’ve been able to get something from the information we got him with Aleksander, right.Bookmark here

Karina: Tak processed most of the information on him last night before we got on the flight – it should have been sent out to my email today. [She picks up her phone and opens her email] Yup, it’s here – Tak’s found his most known whereabouts and one of them is near the heart of downtown.Bookmark here

Shin: Okay, that’s good then. Could you send that to Nats too?Bookmark here

Karina: Aw, Nats is gonna be in a separate car than me?Bookmark here

Shin: Oh, I wasn’t even thinking about that – she just needs to get it so she can send it to our reinforcements.Bookmark here

Karina: Reinforcements?Bookmark here

Shin: Hello, weren’t you the one who sent Hachiro after Yuki and Shin? Hello? How’d you forget this quickly?Bookmark here

Karina: Ah, right, right, that. Wait, how many’d we get?Bookmark here

Shin: Do you have a lack of hearing or something?Bookmark here

Karina: Hey now, that’s quite rude. [Pauses] See, this is why I’m never nice to you, shithead.Bookmark here

Shin: Oh, for Gods sake, we got forty five men as backup.Bookmark here

Karina: Forty-five? Really?Bookmark here

Shin: Yeah. Thank Natsumi for that.Bookmark here

Karina [To Natsumi]: Nats you’re the best!Bookmark here

Natsumi [Looks over from Hachiro, Daisuke, Naomi and Yuki]: Thank you!Bookmark here

Karina [To Shin]: You should be more like her, sadist.Bookmark here

Shin: Oh, shut up now, will ya? Send that shit you got from Tak to her before you put your phone away as well.Bookmark here

Karina: Fine, fine, I will. No need to boss me around.Bookmark here

Shin: What battery percentage are you at?Bookmark here

[Karina doesn’t respond]Bookmark here

Shin: That ain’t good, is it? [He reaches into his pocket and throws her a portable charger] Take this.Bookmark here

Karina: Oh wow, you can be nice, eh?Bookmark here

Shin [Smiles, then laughs]: What kind of leader can’t be nice eh?Bookmark here

Karina: You never seize to amaze me with your stupidity, dipshit.Bookmark here

[Yuki then walks away from Hachiro and the others and walks towards Shin]Bookmark here

Yuki: Shin…Bookmark here

Shin: Yukes, what’s up? Oh, don’t tell me you’re hurting, or you’re tired now. Oh, please God no.Bookmark here

Yuki: No, no, it’s not that.Bookmark here

Shin: Then what is it? Why do you look so down?Bookmark here

Yuki: I look down? Really?Bookmark here

Shin: Well, kinda.Bookmark here

Yuki: Well, I sure as hell ain’t down, I’m excited to do this!Bookmark here

Shin: That’s good – but then what did you wanna say?Bookmark here

Yuki: Oh yeah, right. Shouldn’t we go over the plan now? Now that we’ve got everyone round up.Bookmark here

Shin: Oh yeah, we probably should eh? [He looks over to Natsumi] Nats, did you two create a plan or something or do you want me to go with what I’ve got?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Daisuke had one!Bookmark here

Shin [To Daisuke]: Dais, what were odds like on that?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Pretty good, I’d say. I think we all come out of it and we keep a lot of Lockwood’s men alive too as well.Bookmark here

Shin: Is it a guaranteed hit on Katarov?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Nothing’s guaranteed mate.Bookmark here

Shin: I know that, I know that, but I mean like, what do you think? Think there’s a chance?Bookmark here

Daisuke: I think we’ll get to Katarov no issue with this plan, but the modelling can always have glitches and errors in it, right?Bookmark here

Shin: Yeah, I ain’t expecting something with no error, don’t stress. [Pauses] So, what’s the plan then?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well, we were gonna split up with all of us – yeah, all eleven or so of us – using one of the entrances, while the guys that we have on deck would use the other one. Bookmark here

Shin: I’m sorry, what?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yeah, it seems a bit daunting at first – and actually, Hachi, you can go with the forty-five.Bookmark here

Hachiro: Huh? Why me?Bookmark here

Daisuke: You’re our range, you can snipe out defensive guys from a distance. Just don’t be too close to get picked off, alright?Bookmark here

Shin [To Daisuke]: Wait, wait, wait, I’m still not following? We’re divvying up 45-10? Why? I get that we’re probably stronger, but what the hell?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Relax mate, relax. Rina sent me a rough outline of the building before we were sent to London, so I kinda designed my plan around that.Bookmark here

[He opens up his phone to a blueprint of the building]Bookmark here

Shin: Rina! You knew about this?Bookmark here

Karina: Yeah, you just never asked for it. Tak had rough information on what the building would be like, he just didn’t have a clue where it was until we got a hold on that Aleksander scumbag. He said that most of the buildings in Petersburg are similar, after all.Bookmark here

Yuki: They are?Bookmark here

Karina [Points to Daisuke’s phone]: Yeah, apparently there’s a lot of similar designs, and this design seemed the most appropriate for their main hideout. Its spacious and designed with lots of places for defensive ambushes to be set up. Bookmark here

Shin [To Daisuke]: So then, what’s the plan here?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well, we’ll have the forty-five guys attack in waves first. Five waves of nine or so, leaving within a couple of seconds of one another. They’d be going towards this main door… [he points towards the main door on the left side of the page]. Within those forty-five, maybe one or two of us can sneak into the third wave or so… Naomi and Elec maybe? [They nod] Great.Bookmark here

Shin [Confused]: Still, what are we doing here?Bookmark here

Daisuke: The rest of us – besides Hachiro, cause he’ll be supporting those guys from the back, would be going in through here… [he points to a window]Bookmark here

Shin: Eh? A window? You think we’re gonna make it through there?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well, not all of us per-se. We’ll have alarms set off by the fifth wave of the forty-five, who’d break some of the other windows from the outside, while we send in two of our smaller guys… hmmmmm, Nats?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Sure, I’d go.Bookmark here

Daisuke: We’d need someone sensible with her though… hmmmmm… Drift? Bookmark here

Drift [Looks over]: You want me?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Hmmmmmm.Bookmark here

Drift: I’m huge man… and I’m not really that good with fitting into tight spaces. I don’t think you’d want me doing a job like this where I’d need to be small enough to fit through a broken window – all while I’m injured, nonetheless. Y’know, Higuchi would’ve been pretty good at something like this – even though the morons big.Bookmark here

Daisuke: He broke into that place in Jakarta, right?Bookmark here

Drift: Oh mate, not just there, he did it back home with me and Elec as well. But we’ll save the stories for another time. Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yeah… anyone else though? I mean, I could theoretically do it, but… [He spots Kohaku] Oh shit, you! You’re a perfect size!Bookmark here

Kohaku [Blushes]: Oh, why thank you.Bookmark here

Daisuke [Realizes]: Oh shit, shit, shit, not that –Bookmark here

Natsumi: Hey Dais… I thought this was a meeting for your plan?Bookmark here

Daisuke [Looks at Natsumi, waving his hands]: Calm down, calm down! I was saying she’s a perfect size for the window damnit!Bookmark here

Natsumi: Oh, really now?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yes! I swear!Bookmark here

Shin [Looks at Daisuke, ignoring Natsumi, then looks at Kohaku and asks her]: You up for doing something like this?Bookmark here

Kohaku: What do I need to do exactly?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well, we’re gonna need this girl right here, Natsumi’s her name, and you, to jump in through this window – don’t worry, the alarms will already be blasting so you won’t have to worry there. Then, you’ll just have to navigate through the hallway to the door that’s just a couple doors down, and you two would open the door for the rest of us.Bookmark here

Kohaku: That’s it?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yeah basically. Bookmark here

Kohaku [To Martial]: Maki, you think I can do it?Bookmark here

Martial: Well, I don’t doubt you, honestly, you’re probably one of our best bets to make it into a window that small, especially with how agile ya are. Up to you though – if you wanna experience the thrill like me, go for it.Bookmark here

Shin [To Kohaku]: Besides, don’t stress too much. From what I’ve understood, Natsumi, the girl with you, will do all the lock-picking and all that when need be. You just need to be there as her backup, that’s it. Alright?Bookmark here

Kohaku: I’m pretty sure I can do that, yeah. Anything to help y’all out.Bookmark here

Shin: Appreciate it. [Turns to Daisuke] Now, what’s left of the plan?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Well, well, there ain’t too much left. Once we get inside, we’ll throw a few of the smoke bombs and pepper spray containers into the corners where we don’t have vision, then we’ll split, with a few of us ambushing the back half of their defensive line, while the rest of us rush downstairs to where Kat and Fetistof should probably be hiding. Once we wipe the defensive line, or at least turn their focus to us, the remaining men of the forty-five should be able to either retreat or follow us, depending on their numbers. Bookmark here

Shin: Then what?Bookmark here

Daisuke: There should be more bodyguards and shit downstairs waiting for us, so we’ll go in full aggressive, pushing the tempo while trying to single Katarov away from Fetistof and other guards. Bookmark here

Shin: You think we can?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Oh yeah… I’m expecting a pushback, but I don’t think they’re expecting fifty-five guys to ambush them, right? They shouldn’t have insight on our truce with Sybil, so even if they’re expecting us to retaliate to them stepping on our turf, they wouldn’t think we’d turn around this quickly, with these types of numbers. Especially considering their only source of information was Aleks, and he only saw y’all. Bookmark here

Shin: Yeah, fair call. So, who gets Fetistof? We saving him for Yukes, Drift, Rina and Martial?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Woah, woah, you’re gonna need more backup than just Elec and the rest of us, you know that right?Bookmark here

Shin: Listen bud, your plans great and all, but Katarov’s mine. I ain’t letting none of y’all kill this bastard. I’m the one who’s gonna fucking kill him.Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yeah but…Bookmark here

Yuki: Shinzo, ain’t that a bit risky?Bookmark here

Electra: Yeah Shin, especially since we don’t know about his abilities. We just know he’s strong as hell and can beat down on anyone.Bookmark here

Shin [Cunningly smiles]: I don’t give a rat’s ass. I’m gonna kill him, one way or another. That’s what I’ve been waiting all these years for.Bookmark here

Martial [Thinking]: Oh, I really like this guy. He gets it. Living for the thrill of it. Shame he’s gonna kill that guy before we even get to have a bit of fun.Bookmark here

Daisuke [Looks at Shin]: Well, you’re our leader. You do you. I believe in ya. Go shitkick the ever-loving fuck out of him for all of us.Bookmark here

Shin [Chuckles]: You don’t needa tell me that big man. [Regains his composure] Anyway, the plan sounds damn good. Hell, might even be a bit too easy, but we move. Bookmark here

Yuki: Maybe they’re banking on no one getting the location?Bookmark here

Karina: That’s what I was thinking.Bookmark here

Yuki: That’s the only thing that could make sense. Cause this building scheme is pretty orthodox, all things considered. There’s probably a mess of shit in the basement where we’ll be heading but getting in seems like child’s play. I guess we’ll see when we get there though. Bookmark here

Karina: Oh yeah, Nats, let me send you the address so that you can forward it to those guys as well. When’re they landing again?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Hachi, you got the flight number, right?Bookmark here

Karina: Yeah, it’s a chartered flight from Gatwick, should be arriving in twenty minutes time. We should get going, cause they’re gonna get on the ground and head out right away. Do they know the plan though Nats?Bookmark here

Natsumi: I’m gonna send them everything, the location, the building layout, and I’m gonna get Dais to type up his plan and send it to them.Bookmark here

Karina: Do you know the guy who you’re sending this to, or is it just a random one of em?Bookmark here

Natsumi [Looks to Daisuke]: Was it Roy?Bookmark here

Daisuke: No, no, that was the guy helping with the Mikolev thing.Bookmark here

Karina: Oh, y’all got that done too? No way.Bookmark here

Daisuke: You told us before we left, we had to keep our word, y’know?Bookmark here

Karina: So, Lockwood’s gonna be sending another guy to safeguard them then?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Yeah, that’s the Roy guy. Him and a few other guys, just to be safe.Bookmark here

Karina: Gotcha, gotcha. So, you guys don’t know who this guy that you’re gonna be sending the messages to is then?Bookmark here

Natsumi: Nope, Nats just gave Lockwood her number and he got one of his spare phones and rang it up – he told us he’d be giving it to the leader of this squadron of forty-five, but we didn’t get a name from him.Bookmark here

Karina: Eh, that’s fine, if he’s gonna respond and play the part with us.Bookmark here

Natsumi: Oh yeah, he definitely will.Bookmark here

Drift [Interjects]: Should we get going then? We’ve pretty well settled everything down, and we don’t have any bags to collect from the carousels, plus we had two SUV’s booked for us while we were in Shanghai which should be waiting for us outside the terminal.Bookmark here

Shin: Naomi, Elec, Hachi, Dais and Nats in one car, and the rest of us in the other one then?Bookmark here

Daisuke: Sure, us two [Points to Natsumi] will get dropped off a block ahead of the building and will meet up with y’all there. The car will then take the other three to meet up with the rest of the guys from Sybil.Bookmark here

Shin: Sounds good by me. Naomi, Elec, y’all good with that?Bookmark here

Naomi: Yeah!Bookmark here

Electra: I’m game for whatever ya want boss.Bookmark here

Shin: Sweet then. You two take care of yourselves though. I don’t want any deaths on the job, alright?Bookmark here

Electra: Can’t make any promises boss, but I’ll try my best. And I’ll bring Naomi back alive without question – no matter what.Bookmark here

Naomi: Aw cuzzo, you don’t have to talk like that. None of us are gonna die here. We’ll win.Bookmark here

Electra: Yeah. We’ve got Tokyo’s own Yuki with us, and the great Shinzo, after all.Bookmark here

Naomi: Exactly. We’ll be fine! You two though [she points to Ashe and Kohaku], be safe!Bookmark here

Martial [Smiles]: Aw, not me?Bookmark here

Naomi: Your aura doesn’t feel the same as them – even if it’s just your first time, you’re all riled up to do something like this alongside Shinzo eh?Bookmark here

Martial [Lowers his head, then chuckles]: You bet I am. I’ve been waiting for the thrill of my life, and it’s finally here. Let’s do this. Bookmark here

Naomi [To Ashe and Kohaku, again]: You two though, stay safe!Bookmark here

Ashe: We will, don’t worry! Bookmark here

Kohaku: Yeah, we’ll be fine Mi! Thanks for the encouragement!Bookmark here

[The group walks out the Terminal’s entrance doors, to the blazing Sun and the sound of traffic. Two valet signs are labelled for Kohaku Jin, and she speaks to both drivers and gets Karina and Natsumi to give them directions to the targeted destination] Bookmark here

Electra [To Drift]: See ya on the other side, partner.Bookmark here

Drift: Don’t die, dumbass.Bookmark here

Electra: Right back at ya, moron.Bookmark here

[The group then splits off, wishing each other the best, before the two SUV’s leave the terminal. The scene then pans to a room, at 6:51 a.m, where Katarov sits with his feet up on a table, drinking a glass of red wine. To his right stands a woman, with her arms wrapped around his neck, as well as another, lying on his lap. Behind him stands the figure of a muscular, tall man, with a tattoo of the Japanese for ‘death’ on his face and other tattoos inked on his arms. Money lays on the ground, and from the corner of the shot stands Ryo, smiling viciously as he holds onto the door handle]Bookmark here

Katarov [To Ryo]: Yo… been a while since I last saw ya. How was England?Bookmark here

Ryo: Oh lovely, lovely. Those bastards at Sybil never did anything though. Useless pieces of shit. They’re always on such high alert, and for what? Like calm the hell down. And that Lockwood guy, fucking hell, reminds me of that Raphael guy I used to work with.Bookmark here

Katarov: Oh-ho, the guy from Japan?Bookmark here

Ryo: Yeah, the moron who I partnered with back then.. Him and that other guy – God, I can’t even remember the other guys name, that’s how insignificant they were – what morons. If neither of ‘em existed, I would’ve been able to right the ship after you killed Ichigo, but they were too idiotic and only believed in his greatness. So glad I killed both of ‘em. Bookmark here

Katarov: It made you feel good, eh?Bookmark here

Ryo: Hell yeah it did man. I was shocked you’d give me a chance, since it was us that were the ones who planned the Ichigo hit on ya.Bookmark here

Katarov: Ah, yeah man. But Aleks and Fetistof both agreed that you’d be valuable, especially if you were able to orchestrate something like that, no matter the result. And trust me, no matter how strong he was, there was no way he was gonna defeat me. You’ve seen now, haven’t ya?Bookmark here

Ryo: Oh yeah. That gift’s something else to deal with, especially for a guy who’s a close-combat fighter like Ichigo was. [Laughs] Who cares though? That rat Taiki’s dead anyway, and soon his brother will be too.Bookmark here

Katarov: And so I heard, it’s little Shinzo after me. I assume it was your informant who gave him this lead then, eh?Bookmark here

Ryo: He’s not my informant, that piece of shit Takuya. Self-centered piece of shit, only cared about Ichigo. [Shakes his head] It definitely was him though, he’s the only bastard to smell a drop of blood from a mile away. Bookmark here

Katarov: This should be fun though, shouldn’t it? Little Shin’s coming to play with me, after all. Bookmark here

Ryo: Do you really want to expend your energy on that though? He ain’t even much –Bookmark here

Katarov [Throws a knife towards Ryo, which misses, and embeds into the wall. He then stares him down]: That boy’s my prey. Like his brother, he’s coming to do his job, which I respect, and I won’t let you trample over that, even if you work with me. It’s me, and only me, who can give him the eternal rest he needs.Bookmark here

Ryo [Thinking]: Holy shit, Vlar’s right. This motherfuckers crazy. All the better though. I still wanna see how you’ll be able to usurp him though, Vlar, cause holy shit.Bookmark here

Katarov [Stares down Ryo]: Oi, dumbass! You listening? You understand?Bookmark here

Ryo [Zones back]: Oh yeah man, loud and clear! My bad!Bookmark here

[The tall, muscular man comes into view]Bookmark here

Fetistof: Oi, Kat take it easy on the moron here. He’s just back from England, he’s probably tired as hell anyway. Lay off.Bookmark here

Katarov: Oh, you’re right man. Bookmark here

Fetistof [Walks towards Ryo, looks him up and down, then punches him square in the gut]: Still though, you don’t try and fuck with the captain’s orders. Ya understand?Bookmark here

Ryo [Collecting himself]: Yeah. Yeah, I got it man. My bad.Bookmark here

Ryo [Thinking]: No wonder this guy took the number two spot from Aleks. Aleks wasn’t even half of this guy. Jesus Christ. Both of them and Vlar are  deadly. What a great organization, unlike that shitshow in Japn.Bookmark here

Fetistof: Now, shithead. You got any info for us?Bookmark here

Ryo: Oh yeah, right, right. Shin sent three of his lackeys to meet with Sybil.Bookmark here

Fetistof: So, the bastard ain’t all talk then. He’s smarter than his brother then, eh?Bookmark here

Katarov: Smarter… I don’t know about that. Sybil ain’t some masterclass of an organization. They’ve got their presence, but you’ve been around Lockwood enough to know the maximum extent of the support he’d send with these guys.Bookmark here

Ryo: Well, he sent me and a couple other guys to deal with some shit because of a lackey that they were trying to protect – something or the other like that. Bookmark here

Fetistof: Oh, that’s why you told us to get someone to dispose of the car?Bookmark here

Ryo: Yeah. Smelled like shit in there once I got rid of those morons. Hell, it smelled like shit with those English shitheads in there.Bookmark here

Katarov: Anyway, was there anyone else that you know about that was sent here besides ya?Bookmark here

Ryo: Not that I know of. They had some discussions, but they didn’t last for longer than an hour and a half, tops. If I’m a betting man, I’d say he gave em like five to seven of his lackeys, and a collection of weapons that they wanted. Bookmark here

Fetistof: You confident in that, or you playing with us?Bookmark here

Ryo: I’m not saying anything’s guaranteed, that’s just my best guess. They wouldn’t go to Sybil if they were coming up empty-handed though. They probably have some sort of truce with em, or something like that, but Lockwood’s not the type to get pushed around from what I saw at least. He’s a scrooge. Bookmark here

Katarov [Laughs]: Eh, who cares anyway. No extra manpower, ten extra guys or a hundred, who cares? We’ll tear through em all, right Fet?Bookmark here

Fetistof [Chuckles]: Hell yeah man. Just like the old days.Bookmark here

Katarov [To Ryo]: Oh yeah mate. You see Vlar? I told the guy that you were in England and we had some urgent business to attend to here.Bookmark here

Ryo: Oh yeah, I did.Bookmark here

Katarov: What’d he say? He showing up?Bookmark here

Ryo: About that…Bookmark here

Fetistof: Oh, that bastard ain’t showing up, eh?Bookmark here

Ryo: He told me; ‘Kat’ll be fine even if I don’t go. I’ve got better shit to do here’Bookmark here

Katarov [Laughs]: Sounds exactly like him. I ain’t surprised at all. Would’ve liked him back.Bookmark here

Ryo: You think we need him for this?Bookmark here

[Fetistof and Katarov look to one another, then laugh]Bookmark here

Fetistof: You moron!Bookmark here

Katarov: You think we need backup?! [Laughs]Bookmark here

Ryo: Wait, then why’d you say you would’ve liked him back then?Bookmark here

Katarov: Oh, because he loves murdering people man! Come on, even you should know that!Bookmark here

Ryo: I mean, I guess that’s true.Bookmark here

Katarov: For such a new guy, he’s a character and a half eh?Bookmark here

Fetistof: God love him, he’s been so good at doing all those assassination jobs in Western Europe.Bookmark here

Ryo [Thinking]: It feels good to be back here. These guys are strong as hell. Vlar’s strong as hell. This is where I belong. Being near the top here should be damn fun.Bookmark here

Fetistof: Say Ryo, when’dya think those morons are gonna show up?Bookmark here

Ryo: Oh, Eastern? They should be here sometime later today. I don’t think they’re gonna waste time with the hits, I heard those two back in England talking about making a move.Bookmark here

Fetistof: Gotcha.Bookmark here

Katarov: Can’t wait to bash in some heads, can ya Fet?Bookmark here

Fetistof: Oh, my bloods boiling man. I need some action.Bookmark here

[From behind them, a figure walks towards them and slaps Katarov across the face. Fetistof looks towards him angrily, before immediately losing the look and bowing right before him – Katarov quickly also does the same, and Ryo, in a confused manner, follows them. The figure has a medium build, with larger arms and overgrown hair, and when the person comes into the light, he looks older than Katarov, Fetistof and Ryo – and radiates with a different energy than any of them]Bookmark here

Frost: Katarov…Bookmark here

Katarov [Militarily]: Yessir!Bookmark here

Frost: You haven’t forgotten the reason for this battle, have you? You haven’t strayed away from the teachings that I’ve given you over the years, have you? I know Oskar wandered, and he fell away from the path of light. I’m hoping you don’t do the same. We have a reason that we’re doing all of this, right?Bookmark here

Katarov: Yessir, of course sir!Bookmark here

Ryo [Thinking]: Just who is this guy?Bookmark here

Fetistof: You can be rest assured that we won’t falter sir! Not after everything that you’ve done for Katarov in training him, sir!Bookmark here

Frost: Oh nonsense, nonsense. I just awakened his gift and trained him – just like that guy did for me, all those years ago. I’m just doing my part on this pathway of light. That’s all. You guys can knock some sense into those guys for sure, even kill some, I don’t mind.Bookmark here

Katarov: Still sir, we will not fail you. Not this time. Not when we’ve come this close. But that boy, Shin – let me put him to rest. Is that alright sir?Bookmark here

Frost: I see no harm in that. None, in fact. There are four that I see – I do not know who they are, but I see them – who have great potential. The others, not as much. This Shin boy, he falls into that other category. He is free to be fodder for you. Bookmark here

Katarov [Smiles]: Thank you sir. I will do my best and bring them to you.  Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.