"The family is worth millions! If we just put him up for ransom, we could…"
"No, the people who paid us for this job were very specific and if we free-lance we could wind dead."
"Alright, alright. So the eldest male, he just goes to work and home usually. He participates in functions though to help his company but he is always surrounded by security. At work there are at least three guards around his office and at the entrance of the building. At home I don't even want to think about what he has. Plus, when he's driven places, the driver always carries a nine millimeter and has a back up car for support."
"What about the woman?"
"She mostly stays at home, but when she does go out, there are two guards in plain clothes. I really think our way in is with the son. He just goes to work, walks home alone, maybe stops at a convenience store on the way, or goes to the library. He doesn't have any security around him all. He left his family's company about nine months ago and when he did he lost the protection his parents have."
"And let's face facts. The best leverage, is threatening the life of a couple's child," the man smile sinisterly as he gazed at a photo of a brunette.
Onodera sighed. It had been a long day at work. Between having to be on authors asses for their deadlines and seemingly always running for faxes and copies, and not to mention getting another Isaka san related celebratory party thrusted upon him, because he was the newbie, Onodera was beat.
"You look tired," commented a familiar voice behind Onodera. Onodera whirled around to see his next door neighbor, boss, and sort of kind of special romantic, fuck buddy, not really friend, Takano san.
"What do you want," Onodera barked.
"To go home, obviously, but you're blocking my way."
Onodera felt his face turn red at this as he quickly turned heel and ran towards the convenience store nearby. As he entered one of the aisles, Onodera heard the door ring again. "I hope you're not planning on eating another TV dinner again tonight," came Takano san's voice.
"They have other stuff I need like detergent!"
"Hmm, detergent, yes everyone needs detergent, but in my experience people usually find that in the detergent aisle and not in the snack aisle."
Onodera looked around and saw that Takano was right; he was in the snack aisle. If his face was red before, it was now the color of a tomato. Takano chuckled, "You know if you need to do laundry you can use my washing machine and if you're hungry," Takano grabbed Onodera's arm and started dragging him out of the convenience store. "I have some chicken hibachi already made."
"Thank you for the offer but I have other plans," Onodera tried to reason as they exited the store. The street was quiet. There was only one car on it, a black van.
"Mmmm, sounds like a load of crap," Takano smiled. "Can I get your opinion."
"I'm curious about what you think."
"Uhh, okay shoot."
"What do you think about the new temp, Tashouru Miroku?"
"He's okay, I mean you can tell he's nervous. I mean he dropped three stacks of papers this morning within ten minutes," Onodera replied, thinking back on the twenty-three year old brunette with the cinnamon eyes. "Why do you ask?"
"Something about him bugs me."
"Well he was transferred to us from the BL department, anyone who's worked there is bound to be a little weird."
"That's not what I meant," Takano sighed.
"It's just that I checked some of his references from before he started working a Marukawa Publishing, and the people I talked to said that they had never heard of him."
"What? Are you serious? Have you talked to Isaka san about this?"
"No, I thought I would talk with him first. Just... see if there was a mistake on his resume."
"Still, that's pretty serious."
"Yah, well, everyone deserves the benefit of the doubt, otherwise a person can end up with ten years' worth of regrets." Onodera had no comeback for this remark so he just continued to walk on and pray that he'd reach his apartment soon. That's when Onodera realized something.
"You know, if you really want to talk with him, he did just move to the first floor of our apartment complex."
"He what? When was this?"
"He told me he moved in a few months ago. Said he liked the area."
"Liked the area? That's ridiculous there are no parks in our area or anything remotely interesting. People move there because it's close to work," Takano replied flabbergasted.
"Anyways, if you wanted to talk to him, you could wait in the lobby or outside. I bet he takes the same way home as we do," Onodera cut in.
Takano and Onodera turned the corner when suddenly, Takano got hit in the head with a baseball bat.
"Uhh," Takano groaned.
"Takano san no," Onodera yelled as he punched one of the assailants in the face, breaking his nose. The assailant staggered backwards from the blow, but his partner went up to Onodera and grabbed his arms, while placing a cloth of Onodera's nose and mouth. Takano could Onodera's eyelids droop as he fell into unconsciousness.
"I thought you said he doesn't have security," screamed the man who had put the cloth on Onodera's mouth.
"He doesn't… Ufff," the other man groaned as Takano had gotten up and planted his foot into the man's backside. The other man released Onodera and came forward and slugged Takano in the gut.
The man reached into his pocket and grabbed the cloth again, before pressing it against Takano's mouth. "Forget it, we'll take him too. We can't have any witnesses anyways." Suddenly a black van pulled up to the curb where the four men were. The injured man loaded Onodera first. Just as both men started to hoist the almost unconscious Takano into the back as well, they heard yelling.
"Hey, hey…HEY!" The last thing Takano saw before everything went dark was the man he and Onodera had just been talking about. Tashouru Miroku.