One Thousand Mornings: Chapter 2: Rebirth
Rutted wheels gritted against metal grooves as the large hospital door eased itself out of sight. Clenching the long, steel door handle, Kawamura stood facing the back of Chiasa. The curtains were pulled aside, and the sun; slowly falling from its peak in the sky, shone a warm light through the window. Illuminating Chiasa’s frame and melting away as it stretched closer towards Kawamura’s feet.
“Hey! We’re escorting you to the precinct, you’re going to be kept under our safety.”
Chiasa casually reached down to fasten her shoelaces. With a calm tenor she asked, “Don’t I get to go home first?”
“No, not right now,” Kawamura firmly stated.
“What about my mother? What if I’m not the only one that needs your babysitting?”
“Don’t get yourself worked up. We contacted local authorities in Kyoto. If there’s anything to be concerned about, we’ll take care of it.”
“I guess you know more than I do, right?”
“As a matter of fact, I do.”
Observing Chiasa as she languidly stood to her feet and began creeping over towards him, Kawamura saw a faint resemblance of his wife within her.
“Chiasa, you have to trust somebody. It’ll help if that somebody was me.” The words rolled off his tongue in an unusually empathetic tone; but Chiasa only gave an unfretted glance, before slowly making her way around him.
They both crept into Kawamura’s office. The room felt more independent and quieter than Chiasa had expected. “Take a seat. I’ll be back soon,” Kawamura suggested.
Just as he exited the room, a familiar face made its way inside. “How are you holding up?”
Chiasa tossed her handbag on top of the table placed in the center of the room and plopped her body onto the chair beside it. Looking back at Lee as he slowly pushed the door closed behind him, she replied, “I feel like we’re wasting time.”
“I can understand, it’s a lot going on. And you’re right. If you’re not trying to do too much, then you’re probably not doing anything at all,” he quickly keyed.
Lee then worked his way over towards a chair placed at the backend of the room. Rolling it in between the center table and Kawamura’s desk, he now sat directly in front of Chiasa. “A lot of people didn’t make it out of your apartment last night; that’s reality. But we’re willing to put that all on our shoulders, if that means keeping you safe, and bringing both Reiko and Yuki back home.
“I promise you; we’re going to figure this out, and they will be alright.”
Chiasa peered up at the ceiling, which like the rest of the room, was a dull shade of tan. Splicing in yet another statement, Lee urged, “In the meantime, think of anything that these kidnappers could possibly want from you. That way, we won’t be ‘wasting any time’.” Chiasa, however, simply kept staring upwards.
Kawamura marched through swaths of men and women in uniform, before resting at the desk of a tall, slender officer flicking through files on his computer. “Hey, do me a favor, give me a background check on Yuhna Kim”
“And tell me when you’ve fished everything out of Fujioka’s apartment.”
“The last batch of stuff just came in a little earlier actually… considering the number of things we pulled from every crevice and corner, it’ll take a while to figure out what it all means.”
“Then I’ll get every open hand in this precinct to pitch in if I have to. Time isn’t our friend here.”
“Yea, good luck with that. Everyone’s’ hands are as filled as is”
“Then they better grow a few more.”
Just as Kawamura made an about-face turn, he was greeted by yet another officer in uniform. “Hey, Chief wants to see you in his office.”
“I think he wants you there now.”
“What makes him so pertinent all of a sudden?”
“I dunno, but Interpol just walked through the door about ten minutes before you got here.”
Kawamura dropped his head and placed his hands onto to his waste. With a blank stare, he exclaimed, “Oh, fuck!”
Detective Kawamura and Detective Lee convened in the Chief’s office. They lined up, side by side to one another, as they acknowledged themselves within the Chief’s presence. Standing beside them, was a lady dressed in a rather casual attire.
“Gentlemen allow me to introduce you to Agent Saori. She’s here on orders from Interpol.”
Kawamura and Lee turned their attention towards her, as she did them. She had light brown hair, and almond shaped eyes. She stood at about 164cm tall; with a slim, but curvaceous frame. She wore black slim fit chino pants, sneakers, and a navy button-up blouse. She had soft facial features and looked rather young to be brandished as an Interpol agent. But what struck the men the most, was her firm expression.
“So, there’s only one of you?” The words fell right out of Kawamura’s mouth.
“Were you expecting an army?”
“More like an explanation.”
The Chief panned his eyes across the horizon from Saori to Kawamura and then to Lee. Particularly targeting Kawamura, he continued. “She’s here to assist in the kidnapping case. As you may already know, Interpol has a ton of resources that could be put to good use and help end this mystery as soon as possible.” With his hands held out wide, gesturing with every word he said, the Chief addressed everyone in the room. “I think we can all agree that this bizarre case is best handled sooner than later.”
“Sir, with all due respect. Are you sure she’s here to assist, or to stick her nose where it doesn’t belong?”
“I’m sorry, but did I do anything to deserve this?”
“Not really, but your title does carry around its own chip on its shoulder. You’ve now inherited the disputation.”
Lee nudged at Kawamura, who was busy scorching Agent Saori with a penance stare. “Hey, what are you doing?” he whispered; but before either one of them could get a word in—
“Hold your tongue, detective!” the Chief ordered, yet again.
However, just like clockwork, Kawamura stood his ground. “I just don’t understand why Interpol would be interested in a kidnapping case.”
“Maybe, because it’s not just the kidnapping.”
“Two abductions, and one attempted abduction. Allow me to correct myself, ‘serial’ kidnapping.”
“We found connections that can tie your apartment fiasco to the building collapse. If so, then this case of yours falls under terrorism. Which is something that we handle better than you.”
Following the end of her statement, Saori tauntingly stuck her tongue out at Kawamura; who was thrown off by her sudden childish backlash.
“Well tell me agent, where’s the connection?”
“You should know, you ran the information.
Finally, there was a standstill. Kawamura couldn’t find a witty comeback this time around, and for once, decided to take the backseat.”
“Kouto Fujioka,” she stated. “He was in a relationship with Reiko Honshou and was last seen at the Kawasaki complex on the same day it went down.”
In a last-ditch attempt, Kawamura interjected, “Ever heard of a coincidence?”
“I don’t believe in them.
While relaxing her posture a bit, she continued. “To call Mr. Fujioka’s lifestyle a coincidence would be an understatement. We’ve been tracking him for a while.”
“Then you already know that he was underneath the rubble before Reiko went missing. How could he have anything to do with this case?”
“That’s what I’m here to find out. I know about his apartment as well, so first thing tomorrow I would like to go take a look for myself.”
“No need, I’ll compile a report for you to keep beside your bed at night.”
“If you want this situation dealt with before any more of our officers gets killed, then you best learn how to work out your circumstances.”
“Good! Now if you could please fill Agent Saori in on the current state of the ongoing case.”
“No offense Chief, but in my history of dealing with Interpol, I’ve come to realize that the less they know, the better.”
“You know detective, I think you’re missing the point.”
“Oh yea? And what’s that?”
“That none of this is about you.”
“She’s right detective, calm your attitude or I’ll take you off the case. That’s final”
Saori peered over at Kawamura with an instigating smile on her face. To which, Kawamura closed his eyes and turned away from. All the while, Lee stood quietly off to the side.
“Since we’ve gotten that out of the way. You three get to work!”
Unwittingly, Kawamura remarked, “aye, aye captain!”