Kimagure Orange College - Episode 18
by Stephen Tsai
 
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stsai@netcom.com (Stephen Tsai)

Kimagure Orange College

[Writer's foreword:  This is the eighteenth episode of a fan-fict 
series based on the characters in Kimagure Orange Road.  They are 
intended to take place after the movie, "I Want to Return to that 
Day", and follow the characters Kasuga Kyosuke and Ayukawa Madoka 
as they start the next phase of their lives in college.
	If you missed the previous episodes, notes about the new 
characters, and previous events are listed after the ending 
credits.  In addition, previous episodes are available at the 
wpi.wpi.edu ftp site.
	One thing I would like to say up front:  Although I have 
graduated from college, my experience is in the American college 
system and culture.  The span of my experience in the Japanese 
advanced education system is limited with what I can pick up 
watching anime, reading manga, and consulting with friends, pen 
pals and anime clubs.  Any mistakes, inconsistencies, etc. are 
neither intentional nor are they meant to show disrespect for the 
Japanese education system.  In fact, I would appreciate any 
constructive criticisms, corrections, and insight any readers 
might offer me.  Mail all such letters, praises or flames to 
stsai@netcom.com.]

Episode 18 - A Footnote in History

CONTINUED FROM LAST EPISODE

[The camera pans across the exterior of an old-fashioned wooden 
inn; the wind whistles by, whirling leaves in the air.  A full
moon casts a cold light, reflected off the pond in front.  The 
still night is pierced by a cry.]

Kasuga:  LOOK OUT!

[The shoji* partition is slammed open.]
*Paper wall divider used in a traditional Japanese house or
room.

Fujiwara:  [With alert concern]  Musashi!  What is it?

Kasuga:  Eeehh?!  I thought...I thought...[Puts his hand behind his 
head and sweats.]...your...shadow was him...

Fujiwara:  [Irritated.]  Did I not tell you that Akumu was my 
concern?  [Lowers her blade.]  Do you really think I could allow 
him to catch me off guard like that?  [Softly.]  I could not sleep, 
so I decided to perform some exercises...[Eyes narrow.]  What 
are you doing awake?

Kasuga:  My lady, I...I had a strange dream.

Fujiwara:  ...

[Cut to the next day.  Fujiwara, her hair tied in a bun with a 
grey ribbon, walks the streets of Mikkaichi.  Clad in a grey 
kimono with her swords at her side, she is followed two paces
behind by a tired looking Kasuga.]

Kasuga Narration:  I didn't sleep a wink the rest of the night.  
Fujiwara was walking into a trap...I could feel it.  What could be 
done?  I didn't belong here...I didn't want to be here...and 
Ayukawa...she's probably worried sick about me...

[As they walk down the main road, farmers drag their carts, and 
other peasants shuffle to and fro, always avoiding eye contact 
with Fujiwara and bowing their heads upon passing her.  In front
of a small building, a samurai talks with a kimono clad lady.]

Samurai:  [Solemnly.]  I must go.  My lord has called me to war, and 
even though we are hopelessly outnumbered and our deaths likely, my 
duty is clear. 

Lady:  But what will I do without you?  [Clings to his kimono, looking 
up into his eyes.]  Please...please be careful.

Samurai:  [Holds the lady's hands in his own.]  Ushiko-san, wherefore
art thou Ushiko-san?

Ushiko:  Umao-san, wherefore art thou Umao-san?

[Unseen, a figure stands in the shadows of the building.]

Stranger:  [To himself.]  Hmm...what an interesting line.  I must 
write it down...perhaps it will be useful in a play someday.  [He
takes out a small scroll and begins to write.  As the camera pans 
over his shoulder, it is apparent he has written a few other quotes 
in his travels.
  I)  To be or not to be, that is the question.
 II)  Life is but a tale told by a fool, full of sound and fury, 
      signifying nothing.
III)  Moon prism power, make up. 

[Fujiwara and Kasuga have reached the magistrate's residence.  It is 
a small structure, with the added comfort of a 5 foot tall wooden 
fence.  A slightly overweight man steps out the gate.  He is clad in a 
simple, drab traveling kimono, although he wears the two swords of 
a samurai.  He carries a pack attached to a wooden rod, which he 
slings over his shoulder.  His conical straw hat does not completely 
obscure his kind eyes set in a round, middle-aged face.  Seeing 
Fujiwara, his eyes widen in surprise.]

Samurai:  M...Masako?  Is that really you?  I have not seen you for 
two years.

Fujiwara:  [Bows.]  Lord Yoshimitsu, it is an honor to meet you 
again.  I was seeking you out.  I am afraid I must speak to you 
immediately on a most serious matter. 

Yoshimitsu:  Seeking me out?  [Furrows his brow.]  How did you 
know I was here?  Only a select handful know of my true 
whereabouts!

Fujiwara:  Please, my lord, we need to talk.  All will be made 
clear, but not here in the street.

Yoshimitsu:  [Huffs.]  Very well.  I have just finished checking in 
with the local magistrate.  I was heading to the inn for a room.  
I suppose we can talk there.  [Begins walking towards the inn.]  
By the way, who is your man here?

Fujiwara:  [Before Kasuga can reply.]  He is called Miyamoto 
Musashi, my lord.  He is my servant.

[Yoshimitsu pauses and looks Kasuga over with a baleful eye.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Sarcastically.]  Nice shoes.

Kasuga:  [Bows.]  Thank you, my lord.  [To himself.]  Che*, I 
wish they'd stop picking on me and my Nikes.
*Mild Japanese expression of disappointment/irritation

[As the group approaches the inn, they are being observed by two 
drunken peasant men.  One is tall and thin, and the other is 
shorter and stout.]

Tall peasant:  Hey, take a look at that girl!  What a gorgeous 
body!

Short peasant:  She's (hic) a samurai, you dolt!

Tall peasant:  Who cares?  What an ample bosom!  I bet she could 
bear a lot of children!

Short peasant:  True, true!  Look here she comes now!  Hey, lady, 
I...Urk!  [Falls disemboweled to the ground.]

Tall peasant:  [His mind not yet registering what has happened.]  
Aw, what's the matter, lady?  Your daddy ought to have taught you 
better manners than tha...[His head rolls on the dirt paved 
street.]

Kasuga:  [Shocked at the senseless display of violence before him.]  ...

Yoshimitsu:  M...Masako!  They were just drunken peasants!  They...

[Writer's note:  The samurai had the "right" to kill whomever they
wanted of a lower social class.  The privilege was called 
"kirisutogomen".  In reality, this was handled differently depending 
on the individual samurai.  The calmer, more philosophical ones would 
only do it if deliberately offended.  The touchier ones were known to do 
it for even trivial reasons such as not bowing low enough.]

Fujiwara:  [Coldly wiping her katana on a cloth.]  ...deserved to 
die.  No one insults me or my father in that fashion.  Let us 
enter, my lord.  We have much to discuss.

Yoshimitsu:  [Nods grimly.]  We do indeed.

[As they enter the inn, Fujiwara sheaths her katana and turns to 
Kasuga.]

Fujiwara:  Take care of that mess.  [Gestures to the two bodies.]  
The Shogun and I must talk in private.

Kasuga Narration:  As I stood there, watching what used to be two 
living human beings, I was stunned, but confused too.  I just didn't 
understand Fujiwara...one day she seems sad, maybe even 
lonely...the next day she's a heartless killer.  I knew that the 
inn's servants would take care of the bodies, so I snuck up to 
eavesdrop on Fujiwara.  It was risky, but I just had to know what 
she and the Shogun were talking about.

[Kasuga peers through a crack in the shoji.  Yoshimitsu has taken 
off his hat and is seated on a cushion opposite Fujiwara.]

Fujiwara:  Is the Hana no Gosho* as beautiful as ever?
*Palace of Flowers, Yoshimitsu's residence in Kyoto

Yoshimitsu:  Hai, its gardens improve yearly.  I am planning to 
eventually build my retirement villa in Kitayama.  [Wryly.]  
However, I suspect architecture is not what you were planning to 
discuss with me...so, Masako, how did you know I was here?  Even 
the local magistrate is not aware of who I really am.

Fujiwara:  Your wife told me, my lord.  For months, ever since the 
peace negotiations have been taking place, she has heard rumors 
concerning threats against your life.

Yoshimitsu:  My wife?  Pah, just like her to babble.  Death 
threats are not uncommon, Masako.

Fujiwara:  Believe me, my lord, this particular threat is not 
common.  A month ago she heard a rumor concerning the Yamana 
clan...that they had hired Akumu to kill you.  [Holds up her 
hand.]  Please let me finish, my lord.  She knew that you had 
become concerned enough about these death threats from both the 
Northern and Southern Courts and such to occasionally travel in 
disguise without your usual retinue.  She feared treachery if she had 
sent men from the Bakufu* to find and protect you.  At the time, I was 
residing in Yedo.  Since she could not contact you directly, your 
wife sent me a letter detailing your itinerary for this trip.  She 
had heard that the assassin was to strike on your return trip from 
Yoshino, when you had neared Kyoto, and were alone.  As you know, 
I am...familiar with Akumu.  I am the most qualified person to stop him.  
My other sources informed me that he is planning to kill you here, in 
Mikkaichi.  And yesterday I received this note.  [Retrieves the 
crumpled scroll from within her kimono, and hands it to Yoshimitsu.]
*The Ashikaga Shogunate, based in Kyoto

Yoshimitsu:  [Reads the note.]  So...he really is here.  Don't 
tell me you are actually going through with this?  [Leans forward.]  
It is a trap!

Fujiwara:  [With deadly calm.]  I have waited two long and hard 
years to meet him face to face.  I will not run from this 
confrontation!  He will try something underhanded, but it will 
avail him not!  I will take his treachery and shred his dark soul 
with it.  It is a matter of honor.  I cannot refuse!

Yoshimitsu:  [Gestures with the note.]  He wants to challenge 
you alone in a fight to the death, with the only condition being 
that I have to be there too?  I will not stand for this foolishness!  
What if I refuse to participate?

Fujiwara:  My lord, he will then kill you in your sleep and I will 
not be able to protect you.  I can not watch you constantly, my 
lord.  Sooner or later he will attack.  Here, at least, we know 
when he is coming, and we can be prepared.

Yoshimitsu:  You mean *you* can be prepared.  [Sighs.]  I do not 
suppose you will support the idea of having local troops hiding 
around the inn?

Fujiwara:  No, my lord.  He will see them, and he will never show.  
Please indulge me, my lord.  You know how important this is to me.

Yoshimitsu:  [After a long pause.]  All right.  I will go along 
with your plan.  [He sighs, then gently speaks.]  I remember a 
young girl who once walked the halls of the palace...dressed in 
crimson and white, she was beautiful...but more than that, her 
soul was kind and gentle.  Look at what you have become, Masako.  
I have already lost an old and dear friend to that fiend's 
blade...must you let him destroy you as well?

Fujiwara:  [Long pause, then carefully.]  If you are referring to 
the peasants, my lord, I...

Yoshimitsu:  No, no, it is not just that.  Your father and I were 
good friends, as you well know...ever since we were students 
together studying under Yoriyuki*.  I have known you all your 
life...or at least I thought I knew you.  The Masako I knew was 
not a cold blooded killer.  Killers are easy to find.  Oh, she 
was skilled in the use of the katana...but her martial skills were 
tempered by compassion.  I have heard many tales of your exploits 
within the last two years...I had hoped that they were exaggerated.  
What happened to the Masako *I* knew?  Is she still alive, but 
buried within a steel shell, or has Akumu claimed yet another victim?  
Answer me not.  Only you know the truth.  For your father's sake, I 
pray it is the former.
*Hosokawa Yoriyuki, an ancestor of the former Japanese Prime 
Minister.

Fujiwara:  Have...have you heard from Kiyomori?  It has been so 
long...

Yoshimitsu:  Yes, I have.  [Looks away.]  I...I heard he married 
last month.  I believe the lady was two years younger than 
yourself.  You really left him no choice.  I do not even know if 
your own father would approve of your ronin status.  You and 
Kiyomori, the clumsy fool...[Grins ruefully.]...for the longest time 
I could not figure out what you saw in him.  [Smile fades as he 
turns and sees the stunned look on Fujiwara's face.]  You...you 
made a handsome couple.

[Cut to outside the room.  Kasuga is peering in.]

Child:  Hey, ojisan*, what are you doing here?
*Uncle or old man.

Kasuga:  [Whirls around in surprise.]  Eeeehh!?

[He sees a cute little girl, about six years old, dressed in a red 
kimono.]

Child:  [Brightly.]  You look strange, ojisan.  Where are you 
from?

Kasuga:  [To himself.]  Bratty kid.  [To child.]  That is none of 
your business, child.  Run along to your mother.

Lady:  Oh, there you are, Akiko!  Stop bothering the man and 
return to your room.

Akiko:  But mother, look at his funny shoes...

Lady:  [To Kasuga.]  I am sorry for the trouble, sir.

Kasuga:  S...sure...huh?  [Turns around.]  F...I mean, Lady 
Fujiwara.

Fujiwara:  Done with the bodies?  It took you long enough.  Come 
with me.  Since you will be present you might as well know what 
will hap...[Sighs.]  Take off your shoes, Musashi.

[With Kasuga being led away to an adjoining room, Yoshimitsu is 
temporarily alone.  He turns and unwraps his pack.  He takes out a 
small silk handkerchief, embroidered with a flying crane.  His 
eyes grow hazy...]

[Fade to 6 years ago.  Fujiwara sits in the garden dressed in a 
crimson and white robe, where she has discovered a crane with a 
broken wing.  We have seen this garden twice before, it is the 
garden located in her father's estate.  She is in the act of splinting 
the wing and bandaging it.  In the background, two young men sit, 
unarmed*.]
*The fact that they are unarmed signals they are close friends

Fujiwara:  [To crane.]  Do not worry, Tsuru-san, I will take care 
of you until you are strong and can soar through the sky again.

[Writer's note: A symbol of Japan, "tsuru" means "crane".  The
crane motif is used to represent Fujiwara's gentle side, in the
same fashion that the red straw hat represents Ayukawa.  Ironically,
"tsuru" is also the last name of Ayukawa's voice actress, Tsuru Hiromi.  
This was not realized until the motif had already been written in.]

Younger man:  Haruaki, you must be proud of your daughter.  She 
will make a lucky young man very happy someday.  So cheerful and 
gentle...she will be a wonderful wife.

Haruaki:  [Smiles.]  Thank you, Yoshimitsu.  She takes after her 
mother, does she not?  But beware...she can be headstrong and 
willful at times.

Yoshimitsu:  [Laughs.]  Yes, that is true.  She is not at all like 
the other court ladies who just gossip and talk!  I hear she 
defeated Captain Noritomo in katana practice, and he is one of the 
finest swordsmen I know!

Haruaki:  Ah, I have indulged her too much, I imagine.  That is 
what happens when one has no sons.  [Both men laugh.]

[Fade back to the present.  Yoshimitsu stares at the handkerchief
with moist eyes.]

Yoshimitsu:  Haruaki...I will do my best to insure no harm comes to 
your daughter...but I fear she courts death.

COMMERCIAL BREAK

Voice-over:  Coming this fall...a new series by Bandai!

[Shows the Sailor Senshi in new poses.]

Voice-over:  Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon Double Zeta!

[Shows the Sailor Senshi fighting new youma and other threats.]

Voice-over:  Watch as the Sailor Senshi go up against new threats, 
meet new friends, go to new...[Voice-over grinds to a halt as a 
panda with bunny ears enters the screen pounding a drum.]

New Voice-over:  [As the panda slowly makes his way across the 
screen.]  Still going...nothing outlasts the Energizer battery.

Panda:  [Pounding the drum, spins 360 degrees once, waves the drum 
stick and continues to proceed across the screen.]  
Boom...boom...boom...boom...boom...

New Voice-over:  It keeps going...and going...and going...

[Writer's note:  Standard disclaimer.]

END COMMERCIAL BREAK

[Cut to later that night.  Fujiwara stands in the foyer of the 
inn.  Her hair tied into a bun, she is still clad in a simple 
grey kimono, for she knows that mobility will be essential.  One 
hand rests lightly on the hilt of her sheathed katana.  To the 
rear, separated from her by an open shoji partition, sits 
Yoshimitsu.  He has changed into a dark blue kimono, with two 
swords at his side.  Kasuga stands to his left, wearing baggy 
breeches and a grey jacket.  He has an uncertain look on his  
face.]

Kasuga Narration:  Fujiwara was determined to go through with the 
one-on-one confrontation.  I tried to tell her it was a trap, but 
it was as if she couldn't hear what I was saying.  The dilemma I 
now faced was what, if anything, I could do to prevent her death.  
I knew I shouldn't fool around with history, and yet, would I have 
the nerve to just passively stand by and watch her die?

[Suddenly, out of the darkness a hooded figure emerges.  Clad in 
black from head to toe, he silently enters the foyer.  A relatively tall 
man, the only other physical features seen are his small, cruel eyes.  
He wears a ninjato* slung across his back.]
*ninja sword 

Fujiwara:  [Steely.]  Akumu...

Akumu:  [Bows.]  My Lady Masako...what a pleasure to see you 
again.  [Gaze strays to Yoshimitsu.]  Ah, the mighty Shogun...I am 
glad you could join us.  [Ignores Kasuga.]

Fujiwara:  He is here to witness your death!

Akumu:  Do not be so hasty.  I have taken steps to insure that we 
will not be disturbed.

Yoshimitsu:  What do you mean by that, fiend?

Akumu:  Let us just say that no one else in the inn will, ah, 
bother us, or anyone else, for all eternity.  There was one little 
girl, too...quite pretty.  She reminded me a bit of you, Masako.

Akiko's voice from memory:  You look strange, ojisan.  Where are 
you from?

Kasuga:  [To himself.]  Masaka*...n...not her!?
*Can't be

Fujiwara:  [With quiet rage.]  Monster!  You will pay for all your 
crimes!

Akumu:  I do not think so.

[Before anyone can react, a second hooded man emerges behind 
Yoshimitsu.  Swiftly, he places a dagger at his throat.]

Yoshimitsu:  Un!  You dishonorable filth!

Fujiwara:  [Twirls back.]  My Lord!  [Turns to face Akumu.]  I see 
now your word means nothing.

Akumu:  The Yamana family sends its regards, Shogun.  They 
were...most insistent that I take no chances regarding your 
untimely death.  Why don't you just relax and enjoy the 
spectacle...

Fujiwara:  [With a commanding voice.]  Enough!  [In a ritualistic 
tone.]  I who say this am a descendant of Fujiwara Kamatari, who 
founded a dynasty that ruled Japan for centuries...granddaughter 
of Emperor Go-Kogon, first daughter of the imperial advisor, 
Haruaki.  My name is Masako, my age is nineteen...and I am your 
death.  [Draws her katana.]

[Writer's note:  It was traditional for samurai to state their lineage
before going into battle.]
  
Akumu:  [Draws his ninjato.]  How quaint...your father's katana, 
I believe?  Well, I must say that neither it nor his stellar 
lineage seemed to help him...he was quite an easy kill.

[For a moment the two stand, silently.  Fujiwara's katana glitters 
even by the lanterns' weak light, whereas Akumu's ninjato is 
strangely dark.  Then, they spring together, their sword clashes 
ringing through the night.  The battle doesn't so much resemble a sword 
fight as it does a dance; a graceful, deadly ballet.]

Kasuga Narration:  [With the fight in the background.]  I've never 
seen such a magnificent fight...both sides seemingly equally 
matched, countering move for move...

[Fujiwara and Akumu slash and parry with furious precision, their 
blades just a blur.  She forces him back up against a wall; sparks 
fly, and their sword hilts lock.]

Fujiwara:  [Through clenched teeth.]  It will be a great pleasure to 
kill you...

Akumu:  [Coolly.]  Really?  You do not care about the Shogun at 
all, do you?  All you care about is killing me...admit it.

Fujiwara:  Go to hell...I admit nothing, liar!

[Akumu pushes her back...Fujiwara slashes at his abdomen, but 
Akumu leaps up, flips forward and lands with catlike grace, 
unharmed, behind her...she twirls to meet him...both combatants 
pause to observe the other.]

Akumu:  How does it feel to be a killer, Masako, with no life 
except that of the blade?  It must be terribly cold and lonely...how 
ironic...in your pursuit of me, you have become more like your 
quarry than you realize.  [Condescendingly.]  Do you find it difficult 
when darkness comes and the nightmares begin?

Fujiwara:  [Steely.]  The only dream I have involves your 
death...once I destroy you, this world will be a far brighter 
place...

[Fujiwara executes a lightning quick feint, then slashes down...
Akumu barely parries and suffers a shallow head wound.  Bleeding 
through his hood, he delivers a swift slash to her head...Fujiwara 
ducks...a grey ribbon flies through the air, and her hair falls 
softly down her back.  She slashes at his legs, but he jumps to avoid 
it...the clash continues.  Fujiwara again drives Akumu back, but he 
manages to nick her right arm, drawing blood.  Undaunted, she fights 
on, until suddenly she stumbles and falls to one knee.]

Fujiwara:  Ah!  What...what is this?

Akumu:  [Laughs.]  Why, it is poison, my dear Lady Masako.  You 
will grow weaker and weaker...and then, very soon now, you will 
perish.  I have the antidote, of course...for all the good that 
will do.  You have been quite a thorn in my side for two years...
how long I have waited for this day.  You see, I had something 
very special planned for you, dear Masako.  It was so clever of 
me to place the rumors in the palace...so nice of the Shogun's wife 
to innocently let you know where I was.  [Grins smugly behind his 
hood.]  You see now what you have lost.  I have slain your 
father...I will slay you and the Shogun.  I wonder how your family 
will react when I arrange the evidence to point to you as the 
murderer?  No doubt their shame will be so great that they will 
have no choice but to kill themselves.  [With contempt.]  Samurai 
families, hah!  I also understand you have lost Kiyomori...your 
defeat is total, Masako!

Fujiwara:  [Weakly.]  No, not my family...

[She rises to fight, but in her debilitated state is no match for 
him.  He disarms her, sending her katana skidding across the room.  
He shoves her down roughly.]

Akumu:  [Raising his ninjato for the killing blow.]  Join your 
magnificent ancestors...and do not worry...your family will not be 
far behind.

Yoshimitsu:  [Held in check by the other ninja.]  No!  You...stop!

[Camera pans to Kasuga, standing with a stunned look on his 
face...time stands still.]

Kasuga Narration:  At that moment I fully understood...Fukui-sensei 
was wrong...Fujiwara did not kill Yoshimitsu...she was framed by 
Akumu...that...that monster...Fujiwara...Ayukawa...

[Cut to rapid fire sequence of Kasuga's memories.]

[Kasuga catches the red straw hat...Kasuga saves the 10-year old 
Ayukawa from falling down a cliff...Kasuga and Ayukawa kiss for 
the second time under the tree...Kasuga and Ayukawa walk the 
grounds of the university together...Fujiwara says "...you remind 
me of someone I know."...Yoshimitsu says "I have already lost an 
old and dear friend to that fiend's blade...must you let him 
destroy you as well?"...a six year old child smiles at 
him...Grandpa warns him "If you become involved with someone in 
the past, you will not be able to return!"...Fujiwara lies 
crumpled on the floor...]

[Kasuga looks down at the floor, his clenched fists shaking.]

Kasuga:  [To himself.]...I'm sorry, Ayukawa...I...I just can't 
stand here and do nothing...!  I hope you'll understand...[Looks 
up with a determined glare.]  KUSO*!!
*<Netiquette violator>

Akumu:  [Halts and looks up, as if seeing Kasuga for the first 
time.]  What is this?

Kasuga:  [Powers Fujiwara's katana into his hand, and points it at 
Akumu.]  My name...my name is Miyamoto Musashi...and I will NOT 
let you kill her!  YAAAAAAAAAAA!!

[As he screams, Kasuga lets loose his power, shattering Akumu's 
sword.  He turns and blasts the other ninja away from Yoshimitsu, 
slamming the black clad figure into a corner post.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Draws his katana and attacks the other ninja.]  Die!

Akumu:  [Quickly recovering from his surprise.]  Impossible...even 
ninja do not possess such magic!  [Reaches into his belt and launches 
three shuriken in rapid fire.]

[Kasuga turns back just in time.  Using his power, he deflects
the first as it barely grazes his left cheek.  He stops the other 
two shuriken an inch away from his face.  They fall harmlessly 
to the tatami floor.  Akumu snarls, draws a knife, and charges 
Kasuga.  With another blast of his power, he hurls Akumu through a 
shoji wall into the next room.  His head hits a wooden ceiling 
beam with a sickening crunch...he then falls to the floor and remains 
motionless.  Kasuga drops the katana and runs up to Fujiwara's 
still form.]

Kasuga:  [Desperately shaking her.]  Lady Fujiwara!  Lady 
Fujiwara! 

Fujiwara:  [Softly.]  M...Musashi?  It is so cold...does Akumu yet 
live?

Kasuga:  [Looks across the torn shoji at Akumu.  His head is bent 
at an unnatural angle.]  No...[Pauses in shock.]...he...he's dead...
[Turns back to her.]

Fujiwara:  Then my father's soul is at rest.  He has been avenged, 
and my quest is over.  I will die in peace.

Kasuga:  [Grips her hand and holds it tightly.]  No!  I will not 
let you die...[Runs to the adjoining room and searches Akumu's 
body.  He comes across two small stoppered vials, one white, the 
other black.  He hesitates, then grabs the black* one.  Returning 
to Fujiwara, he kneels beside her and gently lifts her head.]  Here, 
my lady...drink this.  [She does so, then suddenly coughs and lies 
still.  Her eyes close; after a few moments, her eyes flutter open 
and color starts returning to her cheeks.]  *Whew*...
*White is the traditional color of death 
 
Yoshimitsu:  [Walks up to them with a scarlet, dripping blade.]  
Well, that other assassin is no more.  [With concern.]  Will she 
be all right?

Kasuga:  [Bows.]  I believe so, my lord.

Yoshimitsu:  [Relieved.]  Good.  [Looks Kasuga up and down, his 
eyes finally settling on the Nikes.  He shakes his head and 
sighs.]  You possess powerful magic...it must be the shoes.

Kasuga:  [Nervously with his hand behind his head.]  Ah...[To 
himself.]  How am I going to explain this?

[Cut to a few minutes later.  A recovered Fujiwara has picked up 
her katana.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Gestures to both.]  Masako, Musashi, I owe you my 
life.  [Bows.]  I am grateful.

[Fujiwara and Kasuga bow.]

Fujiwara:  It was our duty, Lord Yoshimitsu.  [Turning, she walks 
up to Kasuga and levels her katana at his head, scowling.]  I have 
known from the start that you are not what you had claimed to be.  
Strange clothes and dialect, and now this display of magic. 
[Threateningly.]  What manner of being are you?  I am sick of your 
lies...out with the truth!

Kasuga:  [Gulps.]  I...I can not say...the only thing I can say is 
that I am your friend and sworn servant...I swear I am loyal to 
you and Lord Yoshimitsu.  If you feel this is not enough, then by 
all means...[He bows and bares his neck.]...kill me now.

Yoshimitsu:  [Tenses.]  ...

Kasuga Narration:  At this point I had a lump in my throat the 
size of a melon...my knees were so shaky I could barely 
stand...but somehow, deep in my mind...I knew she would not kill 
me.

Fujiwara:  [Stares, then lowers her katana.]  No...there has been 
enough killing.  You have demonstrated your loyalty today.  I...I 
suppose we all have our secrets.  If you wish to keep yours, then 
so be it.  [Sheaths her katana.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Steps forward eagerly.]  But Musashi, are you ninja?  
You possess powerful magic...I can use a man of your skills in the 
palace.

Kasuga Narration:  I had used my powers to save Fujiwara...I was 
probably doomed to stay in the past forever.  But if I had to stay 
here, I'd much rather stay with...

Kasuga:  [Bows.]  I am sorry, Lord Yoshimitsu, but...[Looks at 
Fujiwara.]...my place...is with my lady.

[Cut to the next day.  Fujiwara and Kasuga sit on their horses in 
front of the inn.  Fujiwara is wearing her armor, but is 
helmetless.  A red ribbon fixes her hair into a long ponytail.  
Kasuga now wears a kimono and winged jacket, and bears a serious 
expression on his face.]

Kasuga Narration:  After a bit of quiet rest, some of the shock over
what had happened during the past two days wore off.  What a brutal,
violent era this was, with so much blood and killing...and I had
personally contributed to it by what I had done to Akumu.  I wasn't
trying to kill him...I just wanted to incapacitate him in some way.
True, he probably deserved to die, but I had never used my power
in such a way before...even when I saved Ayukawa from those
thugs in Disco Moebius*.  I always thought of my power as a 
personal convenience or something meant to help others...I never 
intended to use them to harm anyone.  I was quite disturbed, to say 
the least, about killing Akumu;  not only did it shake my faith in my 
power, I began to wonder just how my actions had changed history...
but I was so glad Fujiwara survived...and I held out hope that
perhaps someday, I might be able to return to my own time.
*In "Hurricane Akane"

Fujiwara:  [Gently.]  I have not yet thanked you for saving my 
life...I am sorry if I had misjudged your intentions. 

Kasuga:  It has been an honor serving you, Lady Fujiwara.  Where, 
may I ask, will you go now?

Fujiwara:  [Looks away wistfully, towards the horizon.]  I will go 
home...I have been away from my family for far too long.  [Turns 
back to Kasuga.]  For saving my life, I would like you to have this.  
[Reaches into a pack and procures a small, red silk handkerchief.  
Embroidered on it is a beautiful white crane.]  I have always admired 
the tsuru...such beauty and grace is truly rare.  [Hands it to a surprised 
Kasuga.]  Thank you...from me and my father...Kasuga-sama*.  
[Bows, then turns away as Yoshimitsu rides up to them, wearing his 
traveling kimono and conical hat.]
*Amataresu's retainer and the legendary founder of the Fujiwara clan.  
In the previous episode, he originally tells her his name is Kasuga, 
but is disbelieved.

Kasuga:  ...

Yoshimitsu:  Well, it took some time but I finally cleared things 
up with the magistrate.  There were fifteen bodies in that 
inn...tragic.  [Brightens.]  You are looking fit, Masako.  As for 
you, Musashi, with a bit of help you now look worthy enough to be 
her servant!  [Wryly.]  You know...[Leans towards Kasuga.]...I could 
order you to the palace to work for me...

Kasuga:  [Pales.]  ...

Yoshimitsu:  But since I owe you my life, I suppose I can live 
with your choice to stay with her.

Kasuga:  [To himself.]  Whew!  [Wipes his brow and leans back, but 
loses his balance and falls into the fish pond.]  Gack!  [Spews 
out a fountain of water.]

Fujiwara:  [Her face softens, and her lips turn up in a hint of a 
smile.]  Musashi, what am I going to do with you?  [Turns to 
Yoshimitsu.]  We will escort you the rest of the way to Kyoto, my 
lord.

Yoshimitsu:  That is well.  Come then, let us depart.

[Cut to later on that day.  The three are slowly riding along a 
road winding through a heavily wooded forest.  Kasuga rides behind 
Yoshimitsu and Fujiwara, who ride side by side.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Sighs.]  Masako, this slow pace grates on the 
nerves.  What say you to a bit of fast riding?

Fujiwara:  I am with you, my lord.  Let us gallop like the spring 
wind!  [Spurs her horse.]  Go!

Yoshimitsu:  Ride!

Kasuga:  Hey, wait I...[As his horse gallops forward, his foot 
slips from the stirrup.]  Whoa, help...[Notices that neither of 
the other riders are paying attention to him.]...I...[falls off 
the horse.]  WHAAAAAAAAAA...

Fujiwara:  [With concern as she turns back.]  Are you all right?  
Eh?  [She looks around as her riderless pack horse trots slowly 
forward.]

Yoshimitsu:  [Begins to look around as well, and starts to get nervous 
as Kasuga is nowhere to be seen.  He turns back to Fujiwara.]  What 
manner of being was this...Musashi?  Wh...where did he go?

Fujiwara:  [Very subdued.]  He...returns to where he 
belongs...[Looks skyward.]  Sayonara, Kasuga-sama...Sewo hayami 
iwa ni sekaruru takigawa no waretemo, sue ni awantozo omou.*

*"Like the waterfall splits and reunites downstream, we may meet 
again in the future (another generation)."  From an old Japanese 
waka (short poem) by Prince Sutoku, pre-13th century.

[Cut to 1988.  In the Butsumetsu History building, Fukui-sensei is 
about to begin his lecture.  As the students pull out their 
notebooks, the class is interrupted by the sound of the door being 
opened forcefully.  As they look towards the exit at the back of 
the lecture hall, Kasuga tumbles down the stairs.]

Kasuga:  [As he falls.]  Oooff!  Ite!  <*BAM!*>  Ah!  Oof!  [Lands 
hard at the bottom level.  He tries to stand up and get his 
bearings.]  Ah!  [Looks around as the rest of the class and Fukui-
sensei stare at him.]  G-gomen!

Yoko:  Look who's back from his two day vacation!  [Staring at his 
clothing.]  What is *that*?

Nakamura:  [Also staring at his clothing.]  Is this some kind of 
class project?

Yuko:  [Amused expression.]  Yeah, who are you suppose to be?  
Miyamoto Musashi?

[The rest of the class breaks out in laughter as Fukui-sensei 
tries to regain the class' attention.]

Kasuga:  [Puts his hand behind his head and sweats.]  
Ahahaha...[To himself.]  Looks like I somehow made it back...

[Cut to a few minutes later.]

Fukui:  Now that we've all settled down, let me start where we 
left off last time.  The treaty unifying the Northern and Southern 
Courts was completed in October of 1392.  As a result, peace was 
restored to the countryside for several decades.  Yoshimitsu 
continued to build magnificent works of architecture, finishing 
his Kitayama villa in 1398.  [Removes his spectacles.]  As an 
interesting aside, he was almost assassinated before the treaty 
was complete.  Legend has it that he was aided by a deity, 
Kasuga-sama.  [Stares at Kasuga as the latter bolts upright in his 
seat, eyes wide.]  Of course, we have our own supernatural being, 
Kasuga, here with us.  His powers?  [Kasuga's jaw drops as 
Fukui-sensei leans forward.]  The ability to disrupt lectures and 
make a fool out of himself in public!  [Grins and winks as the 
students laugh.]

Kasuga:  [Too relieved to be embarrassed.]  Ahaha...whew...

Kasuga Narration:  It was a long time before I was able to fully 
come to terms with my unique experience.  As I sat in class 
reading the dull, dry words of the history text, it dawned on me 
how much was lost when I read the passage.  The emotions, 
personalities, passions and experiences...all reduced to footnotes 
of a paragraph printed on paper.  The struggles, losses and 
victories...long gone.  Masako...and the family she left behind,
forgotten and reduced to dust long ago.  In some ways, I can't help 
but wonder more about that period in history...never to be seen again...

Fujiwara's voice from memory:  ...will future generations remember 
us...?  I think not...

Kasuga's voice from memory:  I...I am sure that someone, somewhere 
will remember...

Kasuga:  [Retrieves the red silk handkerchief from within his kimono.
Then, to himself.]  I will never forget you, my lady...I promise...

[Cut to an hour later.  At the end of the lecture, Kasuga immediately 
gets up and runs out the door.]

Nakamura:  Kasuga-san, are you going to be at Chez...[Watches him 
run out without responding to her.]  Eh?

Yuko:  Where'd he go off to so fast?

Yoko:  With that guy, I have no idea.  He could be returning to 
his own planet for all I know.

[Cut to the Butsumetsu Music building.  The usual assortment of 
students carrying musical instruments is disrupted as Kasuga runs 
from room to room.  The 14th century attire does nothing to quell 
the commotion.  Finally, he finds what he's looking for in one of 
the small practice rooms.]

Ayukawa:  [Setting down her saxophone.]  Kasuga-kun?!

Kasuga:  [Eyes light up.]  Ayukawa!  [Runs right into her arms and 
gives her a long hug.]

Ayukawa:  [With concern.]  Where have you been for the last two d- 
[Interrupted by Kasuga's sudden show of affection.]  K...Kasuga-
kun...[Although surprised and a little embarrassed, she embraces 
him nonetheless.]

Kasuga:  [Almost in tears.]  I'm so glad; I...I thought I'd never 
see you again!

Ayukawa:  Eh?  [The last line catches her attention enough for her 
to fully notice Kasuga's unusual attire.]  What are you wearing?  
[With concern as she gently cups his left cheek with her hand.]
You've been hurt!...What happened?

Kasuga:  [Grasps her right hand with his left.]  What happened...
[Looks more resolute.]...happened a long time ago.

[Cut to the Ginza shopping district.  Hundreds of shops, 
boutiques, bars, lounges, restaurants, and huge department stores 
give the district an ambiance that attracts the thousands of people 
walking and shopping in the street bazaar.  Inside Mitsukoshi
depaato, Ayukawa and Kasuga are shopping for various goods; 
Kasuga has changed to more conservative clothing.]

Ayukawa:  [Picks a dress off the rack and holds it in front of her.]  
How does it look, Kasuga-kun?  Do you like the design?

Kasuga:  [Nods.]  Sure!  [Puts his hand behind his head and 
smiles.]  But the truth is, though, I think everything looks good 
on you...

Ayukawa:  [Smiling lightly.]  Oh, Kasuga-kun, you're no help at 
all...what am I going to do with you?  [Both break out into 
laughter.]

[Cut to a few minutes later.  Kasuga and Ayukawa are browsing 
through a section of the store specializing in ornamental 
decorations.]

Kasuga:  [To himself.]  Being with Ayukawa, even for something  
mundane as shopping, was just the tonic I needed.  Even though my 
experience had helped me appreciate history a little more, it was 
good to be back where I belong.  [Pulls the red silk handkerchief 
out of his pocket and admires the tsuru design.]  Underneath, she 
really was a lonely, sad person.  Thankfully, history didn't 
repeat itself with Ayukawa...

Ayukawa:  [Picks something out of the display case.]  Well, how 
about this?  What do you think?

Kasuga:  Eh?  [Turns around to see what Ayukawa has picked
out, then his expression freezes up.]  Wh...wha...what are
you doing with that?!?

Ayukawa:  [Surprised by his reaction as she holds a samurai sword 
replica.]  Eh?  I just thought it would look good on the wall.

[Freeze frame, the camera pulls back.  Against a black background, 
we see a photo of a surprised Ayukawa holding a katana out in 
front of her.]

Kasuga Narration:  Oh well...I guess history really does repeat 
itself!

END CREDITS

Writer/Historical Researcher            Quincy S. Huoh
New Characters Designer/Co-writer       Stephen Tsai
Doujinshi Artwork                       Tony Jung                        
Pre-readers                             Harold Ancell 
					Robert Carragher
					Andy Combs                      
					Brian Edmonds
					Robert DeLoura                  
					Christian Gadeken
					Takayuki Ito    
					Peter Van Overen
					Jim Ramberg 
					Eric Shen
					Rika Takebe
Very special thanks to                  Hitoshi Doi

A tip of the hat and a deep bow to      Matsumoto Izumi for starting 
the whole thing

If I left anyone off, my apologies.  Any mistakes/embarrassing 
faux pas are entirely my own.  If there is anything here you must 
flame, aim them at me and me alone.

Thank you for taking the time to read this episode of my series.  
If you are interested, previous episodes should be available at 
the wpi.wpi.edu ftp site.  Assuming that I don't get flamed off 
the net, I've got the next episode in the works.  If you have any 
story ideas, or general ideas, please send them.  Any tidbits 
about the Japanese advanced education system will be especially 
looked at (see first writer's note).

Hope you enjoyed it and thanks again!

For the new readers:  I'll be doing character profiles, major 
location descriptions, and situation updates on a rotating basis 
for each episode.  If there is a particular character, place or 
event that you would like to know more about, and it is not being 
covered, don't hesitate to email me and I will send you either a 
note or a copy of the episode it is introduced.

Focus on Ashikaga Yoshimitsu:  b.1358-d.1408  The third Ashikaga 
shogun, he held that post from 1368 to 1394, when he retired to be 
succeeded by his son.  Naturally endowed with personality and 
tact, he brought about the reconciliation of the northern and 
southern branches of the imperial family in 1392.  The treaty 
stated that the branches should alternate rule; for several 
reasons it was never enforced, however, and the northern line 
dominated succession to this day.  Yoshimitsu also established 
diplomatic relations with the Chinese Ming Dynasty.  A patron of 
the arts, he was an ardent fan of Noh.  Perhaps his greatest 
legacy is his works of architecture; the Kinkaku or Golden 
Pavilion, built as part of his Kitayama villa in 1398, still exists 
and is widely hailed for its elegant beauty.  Although the 
assassination attempt is an element of fiction, ninja were used 
quite often in assassinations and acts of subterfuge.  Experts in 
a variety of weapons, their talents are shrouded in mysticism and 
legend.  Among their "magical" powers was said to be the ability 
to control their breathing and heartbeat, as well as saiminjutsu, 
or hypnotism.

If you are interested in the samurai, the events depicted here or
in medieval Japanese history in general, here are a few of the 
books used as source material. 

Cook, Harry:  SAMURAI, THE STORY OF A WARRIOR TRADITION, Sterling
	Publishing Company, Inc., New York, New York, 1993.

This is a very good book that is highly recommended.
It contains a wealth of information concerning history and
the samurai, covering over 1500 years of Japanese history.
Relatively easy to read, it is very well illustrated, with
color photographs and works of art.

    
Dilts, Marion May:  THE PAGEANT OF JAPANESE HISTORY, Longmans,
	Green and Co., Ltd., New York, New York, 1961.

A one volume history of Japan.  Not as comprehensive as Sansom, but
an easy read and a good source of information.


Morris, Ivan(translation):  THE PILLOW BOOK OF SEI SHONAGON, Columbia
	University Press, New York, New York, 1967.

Although written 400 years before the historical events depicted here,
this personal diary of a lady-in-waiting gives a the reader fascinating 
glimpse of Court life in the Heian capital, Kyoto.

 
Papinot, E.:  HISTORICAL AND GEOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF JAPAN, 
Charles E. Tuttle Co., Inc., Tokyo, Japan, Eleventh printing, 1990

A veritable encyclopedia of Japanese historical figures, locations, 
and more.  Although originally printed near the turn of the century 
and therefore at times dated, it contains an enormous amount of 
information.  Highly recommended for anyone interested in 
Japanese history.


Ratti, Oscar and Westbrook, Adele:  SECRETS OF THE SAMURAI, A
	SURVEY OF THE MARTIAL ARTS OF FEUDAL JAPAN, Charles E.
	Tuttle Co., Inc., Tokyo, Japan, 1973.

A comprehensive book concerning Japanese martial arts and
the samurai; including sections on ronin and ninja and various
fighting techniques.

 
Sansom, George:  A HISTORY OF JAPAN TO 1334, Stanford University
	Press, Stanford, California, 1958.

Sansom, George:  A HISTORY OF JAPAN 1334-1615*, Stanford University
	Press, Stanford, California, 1961.

*This second volume contains the information concerning the Ashikaga
Bakufu.  Sansom's works are very comprehensive and as such are not
easy reading; however, they are invaluable for serious students and
locating relatively hard to find information.

-- 
Kimagure Productions| Umao:  Ushiko-san!
    --present--     |
 Orange College #18 | Ushiko:  Umao-san!
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