Revenge, Inc. Part 7: A Short Story
Welcome back everyone. I hope that you've enjoyed this series so far as I'm working very hard to post these serials every Friday evening. By all means, it isn't easy for me to do and for you to continue to support me and read me means a lot. This story is certainly taking on its own life and so I want to see to it that it does get completed, first and foremost. Writing this has made me a much more discipline writer. I hope you enjoy this installment and look forward to hearing your feedback. Thank you as always for reading me.
Of course, if you have yet to read the series entirely I recommend that you do, beginning with Part 1. Please click on the corresponding link below to get started. Please enjoy.
I followed this Master Akira with my duffel bag and found that there was no car as a means of transport to wherever we were going. All I could see was an old three-speed Raleigh bicycle like the one my father used to ride when I was a kid. I watched as the jet rev up and barely make a u-turn on the gleaming white tarmac, and take off in big damn hurry, leaving me with this oriental stranger. The thought then occurred to me that there was no escape. I had no idea what the coordinates to the island were, only that we were somewhere in the middle of the Pacific. I didn’t ever recall hearing or reading about this small, tropical island. Up until that moment, I had no idea that Jirai Island existed. I took out my cell phone to check my GPS application and saw that of course I had no signal. I looked up to see that the old man was smiling at me.
“That’s not going to work here, Cody-san,” he said. “No signal.” No shit, I thought. “Throw it away…Useless.” I looked at him and placed the cell phone in the side-pocket of my cargo pants. I wasn’t ready to just give up my cell phone—not yet anyway. The old man then hopped on the Raleigh and began pedaling and moving pretty damn fast. I looked around to see if maybe there was a bike for me, but of course there wasn’t.
“Hey!” I called out to him. “Where are you going?”
“Cody-san! Try and keep up, okay? Long way back…” And just like that, this old man who was about ninety-five pounds soaking wet was already fifty yards or so ahead of me. I struggled to keep up with him. I was running as fast and as hard as my legs could carry me or as much as my fat-ass would allow. “Hey! Keep up, okay? Keep up!” That’s all this little old man said to me whenever I fell behind and out of breath. Each time I stopped, I cursed Peter. He was the one responsible. He brought me here and brought me into the service of this old coot who was deceptively in perfect health. Fucking Peter, I said under my breath while running. I swear to God…I’m gonna kick his ass the next time I see him.
When finally caught up with the old oriental guy after about three miles of running, a clearing opened up revealing an old rickety bamboo house on stilts that reminded me of the houses I saw in rural Laos during my visit, especially up north in Xiang Khouang. Next to it was a pen of three or four wild boar and all around me was a natural fortress of dark green palms swaying in the sun. As I searched around, there was nothing at all that reminded me of Valhalla. The Raleigh bike leaned up against the railing of the stairway to the house and when looking up the steps to the house, which I doubted, I could climb. I was spent from all that running. Suddenly, I felt a pain in the back of my neck and next thing there was dirt in my mouth as I was coming back into consciousness underneath that hot sun. It seemed like an instant. The old oriental guy was looking down at me and I had to squint to see him against the glare of the hot sun.
“What happened, Cody-san?” It was that Miyagi-speak again.
“I…I don’t know. Some jerk-off hit me from behind! Was it you?” The fuck smiled.
“Yes, I am ‘jerk-off’ that hit you. You want to hit me back?” Just as I tried to get up, my head spun again and I felt like I was going to blow chunks and so laid back down again.
“Why did you hit me?”
“Why did you let me hit you, hmm? Ask self this question.” Okay, I was getting pissed. My first thought was to get my katana out of my duffel bag and chop his ass up. “Always must prepare, Cody-san...Never know when next strike come.” He then turned his back on me which then prompted me to rise up. For just a split second, I took my eyes away from him while trying to get my footing. That was a big fucking mistake. Next thing, a goddamn bolt of lightning hit me. It was that fast.
When I came to again, the sun was lower on the horizon but was still just as hot and bright as before I got knocked the fuck out the first time. I immediately shielded my face just as soon as I regained consciousness—call it a delayed reaction. How long was I out and how the hell was this little oriental so fucking fast? It boggled my mind as there was no logic in it. I touched my face and my chin which was now searing with pain. What I thought was a pebble inside my mouth turned out to be one of my molars. I spat it out on the ground along with a mouthful of blood and saliva. Just then, the thought occurred to me: I just let a senior citizen with flip-flops kick my ass…Who the hell was this guy?
“Cody-san!” At the sound of his voice, I flinched. “Go to stream! Fetch water!” A long bamboo stick with two buckets tied to each end then fell by my feet. “Follow path! Hurry up!” So what was I supposed to do? I did what I was told. At the time, I really didn’t believe that I had much of choice.
This would all be redundant the next six weeks. I’d hear the same shit everyday, including: “Pick rice!” “Bring wood!” “Fix fence!” The guy was driving me batty. That’s all I did…Six weeks of absolute hell in what looked like a honeymooner’s paradise somehow turned into the Killing Fields. Somehow or other, I became a slave of this guy like a second-hand car right after that jet took off and left me stranded with this nut. I thought I was going to crack. I cursed Peter’s name over and over again. I cursed his name when I woke up at the ass-crack of dawn and in the evening before I went to bed on my bamboo mat, sore as whore on a Saturday night. I cursed his name often and thought about what I’d do or say to him the next time I saw him.
One day while at the end of six weeks, the first thought of escape came to mind. How I was going to go about it was another thing completely. But that was when I saw Master Akira practicing with my katana, which was very much like a dance, when coming back from the stream bed with our evening’s supply of water. He didn’t look at me continued on as I stood watching him. His movements were flawless and effortless.
“What are you doing here, Cody-san?” He said without looking at me. He parried backwards and counterattacked with a backhand slash at his invisible enemy.
“I’m watching you, Master Akira…What else?”
“No think you understand…What are you doing here, Cody-san?” I paused for a moment and reflected on the weeks leading up to that very moment. The constant fetching of water, the picking of rice, the meditation in the evening hours of the night while the cool breezes of the island coursed through Master Akira’s stilted house like the song of Sirens lolling me to sleep.
“To serve you, Master Akira.” He smiled at me.
“No, Cody-san. I expect much better answer than that.” I was confused. I didn’t know what to say so said nothing in response. “You have choice, Cody-san…Always a choice…To listen, or no listen, to fetch water, or no fetch water…Orders are for animals who only obey because of fear from their masters…He then stopped and brought the katana to rest and sheathed it, while looking at me. “…To avenge or no avenge.” My rage resurfaced. I thought of Haley and of that day I tried in vain to bring her home, when suddenly, I was taken by surprised and brought down. There was nothing I could do. “Peter told me everything Cody-san…Very sad…Broke my heart to hear.” And now it wasn’t rage anymore that crept up my throat. It was hard to suppress. When I looked up, Master Akira was a glassy figure. From the light of the fire that burned atop the open clearing, to me he was disappearing and reappearing over and over again. He placed his hand on my shoulder and looked at me.
“Will you honor her, Cody-san? Will you fight for her until you breathe your last breath?” I nodded my head.
“For everything that I am, I will.” He bowed his head and tightened his jaw. I could see the roaring fire in his eyes.
“Then I will help you.”
© Copyright 2009. All Rights Reserved.
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