In a small corner of Tokyo, two mafia groups occupy the space. The dividing line between the two territories is a set of train tracks. If anyone from the opposite side of the tracks crosses over without permission, their fate lies in whoever catches them, most usually death.
The West side of the tracks has always been considered more defensive than offensive, and the East side of the tracks has always been more offensive than defensive.
Natsuo grew up on the West side of the tracks. His father works directly for the Head of the West Side Mafia. He grew up with little to no hardships, always having enough food to eat, water to drink, and the occasional friend to have fun with. However, he has also been well trained to be able to protect himself in combat, as well as minor training in attack.
____ grew up on the East side of the tracks. With no parents and no siblings, he was taken into the Youth Ward to be raised to fight anyone and everyone, and to survive without a doubt. He was raised to be a soldier against the West side; raised to be a weapon of attack.
One day, Natsuo's father brings home news of the Head's plans for pushing the border and invading the East side to try and take down the Head of the East Side Mafia. He would be oblivious and taken off guard by the offensive move of the West side, and wouldn't stand a chance. But, the reason he's letting Natsuo in on the information is because he has been specially selected by the Head to invade the East side in an attempt with three other specially selected men to bring the East Head to his knees. Natsuo has no choice but to agree.
Somehow, Natsuo manages to breech the borders of the tracks, and succeeds in getting across to the East side. His target is a young man, only slightly older than himself, who is very close to the Head of the East side. All he needs to do is get close enough to him to earn his trust and the whereabouts of the East Head, kill the man, find the Head, and kill him as well.
Except, Natsuo finds out in the process of getting ____ to warm up to him that he's beginning to fall in love. With no way to evacuate the mission, Natsuo isn't sure if he should tell ____ who he really is and risk death, but possible forgiveness, or keep the secret and hide part of himself from the man he's beginning to fall for.
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Katsu's own frustration grew at his lack of a way to get up to the roof. Despite how comical it seemed, he couldn't exactly just hop up over to the top, and it was unlikely that simply a hand would be enough for him to climb up the wall. It was bit of a challenge to even consider.
"It might be best," Katsu began, thinking as he spoke. He wasn't exactly sure what might be best, but he ran over the image of the building layout in his mind. "If you can get inside, maybe you could unbolt this door." Katsu pointed to the door he had previously tried to enter. "There isn't much stable around here to climb up without risk of injury, so I'm pretty much a sitting duck over here." Which I hate, Katsu mentally added.
"If I remember rightly, where you're going in used to be some sort of skylight, so it should open up to a relatively open room, with some machinery in the opposite direction of this door, and large steel panels across the wall on my left. On the right, I'm not sure what may have been done to it, but it is likely that there are old work tables there if they weren't taken away or broken. Other than that, I'm not quite sure what you would find." And aside from that, Katsu was rather curious as to what it would look like. He was getting nervous standing out in the open when they were essentially wanted criminals.
Natsuo watched as the blonde below him pulled out his own gun, then gingerly tossed it up onto the roof. He caught it carefully, pleased with the fact that it hadn't fired when it landed in his hands. As he started back over to the door laying in the rooftop, he gripped the handle of the gun carefully, and raised his arm to line it up with the slab of metal. Shoot the lock? Shoot the chain? He thought as he aimed as best he could, both eyes open, both hands now on the gun. If I shoot the lock, it could easily rebound back at me...or end up somewhere else. Maybe the chain, then. He shifted his gaze and his arms, until he was lined up with the chain. He started with a few deep breaths, settling himself. It didn't matter if he could only make the shot once; he only needed one shot. Another deep breath, and he fired.Okay, well that's good :]
He was half surprised that it actually hit, and half proud of himself for making the shot. Though, shaking it off quickly, Natsuo headed back over to where Katsu was still situated on the ground. He peered back over the edge, down to find the other male investigating their surroundings. He crouched down, watching him carefully. "What're you doing?" he called over to him, catching his attention immediately. He gestured to the gun in his hand with a nod, then over toward the center of the roof. "Should be safe to open now...are you going to try coming up here?" He watched him carefully, before glancing back at the door behind him. "Wait a sec."
Turning, Natsuo strode back over to the door, set the gun down, and brushed away the now-broken chains, along with the lock. He grabbed onto the door's handles, and heaved them up. They were heavier than he had anticipated, but he still managed to pull them open. They stood up straight, pointing to the sky as he stared down into the black hole of the building. He shivered. "How pleasant." he mumbled. Reaching back into the small bag he'd brought along with him, he pulled out a small flashlight, no bigger than the length of his hand, and turned it on. He pointed it down into the blackness of the building, and was surprised to find how little distance there was from ceiling to floor. Thinking back, he remembered how it hadn't been very hard for him to get onto the roof in the first place.
He glanced back in the direction of Katsu, probably still looking for a way up, then turned his attention back to the inside of the warehouse just as a rat scurried across the light. He frowned, but it didn't stop him from looking around more. From his position, there wasn't very much to be seen. "Guess we're going to have to do some exploring." he thought, walking back over to Katsu to see if he could help him up.
Katsu was so far into his own mind, reanalyzing image after image of files in his mind. He knew he had seen something before that could help. Something, anything
. He felt almost pathetic just standing there, stalled because of a simple little puzzle. Of course, there wasn't much of an easier way across the border, and it was likely that any other way would be heavily patrolled. He was quite honestly surprised that this building didn't have a scheduled watch on it.
The sound of Natsuo's voice from up above broke him from his thoughts. "Found something?"
he asked before hearing Natsuo's request. Hesitantly, he unclipped the holster at his side and threw it over the edge of the roof, careful to make sure it wouldn't go off on the landing. There was something about both being in one place so far in the open without moving and being without a gun that made everything seem to be seen in a few darker shades of colour.
While he waited, he looked for a way up. Now that there was a possible way in, he would probably need to get up there to join him lest he decide that he wanted to wait outside any longer to be let inside, and that made him uneasy as it was. As he looked around, all he could really see was unstable garbage, nothing that could really support his weight. The dumpster by the side of the building had a few broken hinges and looked as though it collapsed in the center from someone else thinking that that was a good way up.
His attention was caught on an old, hanging telephone wire, something that was in existence before the whole city went digital and forewent obsolete technology. It was very likely that there wasn't any charge, and with his gloves he could probably maintain a good grip on it.
And yet, that theory was disproved as he made an attempt to grab the wire, only to have the entire length fall at his feet.
it's quite alright ☺ i got more than enough to work with
[Sorry about my crappy post :/]
Natsuo easily hoisted himself up onto the roof with Katsu's help. He had somewhat high expectations as he stood up from his knees after he planted himself, though they weren't exactly...met. As he stood, he looked around himself. To his right was the treeline, hiding the train tracks. To his left was a continuous farmer's field. When he looked out straight, his eyes slid over the rooftop like it was covered in ice, right out to the neighborhood. There was nothing. It was just a flat roof. "There's nothing here." he said in a quiet voice, mostly to himself. He glanced behind him, back down to the blonde male still stationed on the ground. He chewed the inside of his cheek, before turning back.
He started forward, eyes taking in the scene as well as questioning it. When he was almost to the middle of the rooftop, he stumbled. Grumbling to himself, he glared down at where his feet were planted, and paused. A smirk arose on his mouth as he crouched down. "How original." he thought out loud, shaking his head as his finger tips grazed over the top of a metal door situated in the roof. It didn't look like it was very heavy, or like it would be very tough to open. The only thing making him pause was the padlock and chains circling the handles. He jostled them slightly before pulling one of his knives out. He slid it's tip into the keyhole, turned it a bit...nothing. "Well at least they were smart about this." He mumbled.
After a moment's thought, he stood and walked back over to the edge of the building. "Found our door." he called down, smiling. "Throw me up your gun. Let's see if this one-hit wonder can make the shot."
Katsu nodded over at Natsuo, catching the grin but making a conscious effort to not react to it. Instead, he placed his hands forward, creating a foothold with which he could help lift Natsuo up and over the edge of the roof.
Once Natsuo was up, he waited a few moments for Natsuo's observations, adding some more observations to the growing list he already had. The building itself was a good decade or two old, and yet the last people to occupy the building before its raid and subsequent shutdown had only been there for a few months. He hadn't seen the tunnel himself, but had seen reports of it being only wide enough for one person, and relatively low enough to hide behind much of the manufacture equipment and machinery. His main concern was how to get into that, since the reports also said that the entrance had been pressure sealed with reinforced steel.
He made a mental huff of frustration as the images from the files faded from his focus. That wasn't what he was looking for, at least. He wanted a way in, or even a way out depending on the perspective. He mentally pulled up the files again, looking deeper. He saw that the locking mechanism did require a sort of unconventional "key" to keep it sealed so tightly, one that would cause the pressure to drop if it wasn't in an active state. But what was that key?
Natsuo listened as Katsu explained what the building's prior use had been as he started toward the side of the building. There was a thick lining of trees beside the building, and he couldn't see through it. Though, he guessed, a little bit of a walk through those trees would lead you to border of the East Side. He wondered what the border looked like. He'd never been to one, other than the one at the train station with the wire fences, when he'd first broken through the border and come onto this side. He was smart enough to know that they wouldn't be using chain link fences on the border this far away from where the trains were actually accessible. It would be absurd.
Maybe more along the line of a wall? He thought to himself as he rounded the side of the building.
When he reached the back of the building, upon finding no possible way into the warehouse from his side, he met up with Katsu again. He gathered that both sides probably looked identical. He walked over as the blonde seemed to be figuring out a way inside, staring at a slightly indented part of the wall. When he got closer, he realized it was a door. He stared for a moment, before complying to what the other male said as he pointed a gun at the door's handle. He flinched slightly at the sound of metal hitting metal, but it was his first instinct to not get his hopes up. And he was right to not do so. The door was clearly being kept closed from the inside.
He glanced around for a moment, before looking back to Katsu as he spoke. He raised a brow, turning to look up at the roof. He shrugged. "It's not impossible." he said. He walked over to the wall, gazing up at it. "It's not that tall, I guess. Wanna boost me?" he asked, grinning over at the other male. "I'm lighter."
"This building was originally a metalworks factory," Katsu began as he walked around the perimeter, investigating every crack and shadow. "But after an investigation by the East Side, it was found to me a weapons manufacturing plant that was supplying weapons through a tunnel to the West Side. A raid closed it down, and the tunnel, by any official or unofficial records, was never investigated. There was too much fear that investigation would warrant war, and given that we had no idea how long this plant had been here, we didn't want to face a large militia freshly supplied with weapons."
Katsu tested a door on the rear of the building, only to find that it had been barred shut from the inside. But if it was barred from the inside, he had an idea. "So the place was sealed up without further investigation. Everyone found here was taken in for who knows whatever torture they faced for those crimes." Katsu pulled out a gun and a knife and used the knife to cut through the wooden door frame, stopping when it turned to metal. He was partly glad that the building was poorly made despite being a plant, but he supposed that was because of how close it was to the border. He wedge the knife in between the door and the bars, just at the handle. When it was deep enough where it couldn't move forward or backward, Katsu raised his gun and took a few steps back.
"Stand back," he said to Natsu before taking aim and firing. His shot was aimed at the handle of the knife, forcing it forward and breaking the simple locking mechanism on the door. The handle fell forward with the broken pieces of the knife. He pulled hard on the door, but failed to consider that the bars may have been attached to the inside-facing hinges. The door failed to budge, and a low curse escaped from Katsu's lips.
He looked around for a moment, then looked up. "Do you think people would ever think to seal a building completely at the roof?"
Natsuo glanced up at his companion, before a small smile touched his lips. "You're right." he told him. Looking back in front of him, the smile still didn't vanish completely. "Personally, I wouldn't change this."
When the reached what Natsuo presumed to be the warehouse, he paused. Katsu walked on a little ahead of him, but the raven haired male simply stared at the building in front of them. "In all honest, I was expecting something more impressive." he thought aloud, and nearly laughed when he did so. With a soft shrug, he started toward the other male, stopping again when he reached what probably used to be the building's front entrance. He glanced around them, noticing that the area they were in wasn't entirely deserted. Down the street they had come he could clearly make out where houses began, and continued in the opposite direction. So, they had tried to keep the warehouse partially secluded, without making it look entirely suspicious.
"What was this building's original purpose?" he finally asked. He looked back to the male beside him, curiously awaiting an answer. Glancing around them again, Natsuo noticed again how secluded they had become on their small journey to the building. The road ended at the warehouse, and large trees lined the street until they met with the neighborhood further down the road. This would be a great place for an ambush. He thought to himself, though the thought didn't really set him on edge. It more or less motivated him to try and get them inside faster. "Well, let's find a way inside this thing." he sighed, beginning to walk the perimeter of the building. "There's gotta be a weak point somewhere."
Katsu nodded in silence, absorbing the weight of Natsuo's words. He though for himself what he might have done under "normal circumstances." And yet, try as he could, he couldn't fathom that possibly reality. The circumstances that were in place now lead to the elimination of who he was at this very point in time. He had no idea what his emotional state would have been, not his personality or habits. He couldn't tell if he'd be a good person or a distasteful one, if he could be kind, cruel, or as base as he was now.
It was also very likely that he wouldn't have noticed Natsuo, but for more reasons than thought. He wasn't exactly the exploring one. He liked having solid habits and routines, and given that he would likely have been born on this "side" of the country, he probably wouldn't have left to venture elsewhere.
"Then I suppose it's good we're in the circumstances we are in, if I were to be so optimistic," Katsu said with a half smile, focusing a bit more on where he was going so that he wouldn't trip over his own feet. Being so flustered wasn't ideal at this point.
It didn't take all that long to make it to the warehouse, which was more or less abandoned as they approached. Though abandoned, it was sealed with metal frames and bolted. It didn't look like entry would be easy. "Here we are."
Natsuo turned his eyes up to the male beside him when he heard his words, and started considering it even before Katsu rushed in to try and brush off the topic. The raven haired male shook his head, glancing ahead of them again. "No, it's alright." he said, a small smile coming to his mouth. Though, as he thought more, it fell away. What would have happened if they had met under "normal circumstances"? If there weren't any sides at all, or even if they had been on the same side... He wondered. A lot could have happened. They could have become friends. They could have easily brushed each other off. They could have spoken only once, maybe more than once... He wasn't exactly sure. The possibilities were endless.
"I'm not really sure." he finally said. "I mean, since the circumstances aren't like that, we'll never really know..." Shrugging his shoulders, he looked back to the male beside him. "I feel like, maybe, if our personalities were the same as they are now..." he paused, collecting his thoughts before speaking. "That we might not have really noticed each other...I mean, I don't think I would have noticed you, the way I do right now." he stated, though, after a second or two, realized how his words might have sounded. "Um, I don't mean.." he fumbled over words, feeling a light heat come to his cheeks. "I just, um, mean that...we might not have had a reason to come together like we are right now." he corrected himself, and snuck a small glance at the male beside him. "As sad as that sounds..."
Katsu focused most if not all of his energy on maintaining his breathing. As if the contact had triggered something physically, he found his heart racing as though he were physically exerting himself. With that, his breathing began to shorten, and he knew that the longer this kept up, he could find himself hyperventilating. Though there was a bit of comfort in using the silence to regain his composure, he soon found that it was making him more anxious.
He took a deep breath to clear his mind and hopefully calm himself down. It was only holding hands, he continually told himself. Just holding hands. Nothing more than that, nothing more expected from that. He felt like a foolish child for feeling this way, for being so flustered despite the behavioural drills that he was so used to experiencing. It felt like it was all being undone with every moment spent with the young man. At the very least, he hoped it was for the better.
"Can you answer this for me? Honestly?" Katsu asked, breaking the silence once the amount of people around them began to thin. He hadn't seen very many soldiers as they walked, and it wouldn't be long until they were halfway there, passing through the East Side Mall. "If there were no 'sides,' and we had met on other circumstances, all else the same, how do you think that would have went?" Katsu laughed at the question once he had said it. "Never mind, you don't have to answer that. My mind is just running all over the place."
Natsuo nodded to the question, continuing to listen as Katsu spoke about the warehouse and the possibility of it leading over to the West Side. It was a good idea, but he wasn't exactly sure he liked it. If it was designated as a passage to the other side, then the government probably would have checked it out. If it was kept secret that they had done so, even from Katsu, it could mean that it really did lead over to the West Side. Which meant that anyone, at any time, could cross over from where they were to where Natsuo had come from. The thought almost made him shiver, but he pushed down the feeling. As much as he wanted this passage to lead them to his home; to safety...he didn't want it to, at the same time.
As they walked, the silence picked up again. Although, it wasn't an awkward or uncomfortable silence. Not to Natsuo. Instead, he felt it was a much more determined silence; they didn't speak, because they couldn't get caught, and they were so concentrated on getting to this warehouse and trying to find out if they could unseal the passage, and see where it led to. Though, that didn't mean that he still wasn't the tiniest bit distracted. Where they were then, he had never seen that part of the city. He hadn't been in the East Side long enough to have actually seen everything, and he had only actually been there for less than a week, but it was nice to have a change of scenery. And it was...odd. During elementary school when he was little, he could remember being told that the East Side was dump; that it was full of war-crazy people desperate for blood with hatred. And now that he was there, he was actually seeing how wrong those teachers had been.
"Remember the warehouse I helped raid that had the suspicious designs on their weapons?" Katsu asked, his voice low enough so that Natsuo should be the among the only one to hear him. "There was a passageway that was suspected to head to the West Side, but instead of confirming where it went, it was sealed instead. If we could reopen it, we should have a way across if we need to."
Hopefully, Katsu thought, noting mentally that even he hadn't tried to confirm where the passageway went. It was simply chalked up to be West Side-affilliated and closed down without investigation. Of course, it seemed obvious at the time considering that the warehouse was mere feet away from the border, and with the angle of the passageway, it seemed obvious that it went to the West Side. If not, then it was a fool's errand to check it out. Then again, they didn't really have many options.
As they walked, they passed a hair salon. Katsu entertained the idea in his mind for a few moments before discarding it completely. As much as changing his hair colour could guarantee some degree of safety, he couldn't bring himself to do away with it.
Natsuo had to try not to laugh at Katsu's reaction to their joined hands. It was almost cute, how he kept blushing and getting flustered. And, at the same time, the action was having slightly the same affect on himself. He could feel the slight heat in his cheeks, but chose to ignore it, putting it off as just the embarrassment of the situation. As they walked, he noticed that few people were paying any attention to the two of them. They got a few looks here and there, but most seemed completely disinterested in the pair of men holding hands down the street. Now that, he noted, was a difference from the West Side. If they were on the other side, people would have stared at them. They would have stopped whatever they were doing, and he could even imagine the faces people would make. He'd seen it happen before, when out with friends. Though, he'd never understood it. He smiled inwardly to himself. I never thought that I'd find something that I liked over here.
Natsuo's ears perked as the male beside him began to speak, though quickly noticed the soldiers passing by them as Katsu paused his speech. When he resumed, Natsuo looked up to meet his eyes. He nodded. "Alright, sounds good to me." he said. He turned to look back ahead of them, noticing how the city was really lacking in soldiers. Unless, of coarse, they were in disguises as well. He glanced through his bangs around them, but noticed that not one person was looking at them or watching them. They were all too busy shopping and talking to people on the street. Turning back to Katsu, he kept his voice slightly low, just in case he was wrong. "So, what kind of place is it that we're going to?"
/ 6y 257d 4h 36m 1s
"A professional?" Katsu managed to say before his hand was seized by the other young man. A crescendo of heat rose to his face and he looked away for a moment, still holding onto Natsuo's hand. It was a strange sensation, altogether unfamiliar. Lyn was never one to encourage that much physical contact, let alone do so little as hold hands. He didn't think such a sensation could be considered as...nice.
Feeling a bit obvious in the open air, he put the hood of the windbreaker over his hair. His mind was racing, and as they walked, he couldn't think of all that much to say. He wasn't always one to make productive small talk, given that the last few times he blundered through conversation like a blumbering idiot. Perhaps just staying focused on the task at hand would be best.
"So, there is a place in the city that is a bit of a walk away, but should get us across with no problem." He bristled and quieted himself as they briefly passed a few idle soldiers. Once they were back out of earshot, he kept talking. "Sounds like a plan?"
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