January 16, 2012
The next morning, Sutekiko awakens and starts going through her morning. While checking her email, she finds she has received several responses to her inquiry about contacting Travis Touchdown. Apart from random claims that he has been seen, most people agree that he has not been seen since the 2010 ranking match. She then continues about her morning until it is time to meet Donald Flanagan in the afternoon. Upon her arrival at the warehouse, she meets with Donald to discuss her boxing technique. He says that she is welcome to train here, and he also asks if she would be interested in boxing at one of the underground matches. She says yes, and he says he’ll get in touch with the promoter and see what’s happening.
Sutekiko spends the rest of the afternoon training, meeting up with Frankie the Fist to see if he can give her any tips. The two decide to start training together. Donald also lets her know that the local fight promoter should be available tomorrow afternoon, in case they want to meet.
After going home and going to sleep, Sutekiko awakens in the night. She does not remember the dream she had — only that it was warm and soothing — but a sense of urgency at the end awoke her. She grabs her staff and investigates the apartment before returning to sleep.
The following afternoon she meets Donald Flanagan at a set of apartments near her own to meet with the local fight organizer, Pamela Durnin. Donald explains that Pamela was once an underground boxer herself and has since become a fight promoter. Rumor indicates that she was propelled to fame after she killed a man in the ring, and despite her laid-back style and flip attitude, her signature maneuver is called the “Rage Fist.”
Donald and Sutekiko go upstairs and knock on the door to be greeted by a man in a suit who tells them that Pamela is in her office. The office itself is simply an apartment converted into a sparse office environment. When they go into the back and knock on the door, Pamela tells them to enter.
After introductions are made, Pamela asks Sutekiko a little about her experience and what she’d like to do. At Donald’s request, Pamela decides to switch out Donald’s previous man with Sutekiko as a last-minute substitution. To make everything a bit more lucrative, Pamela wants to play up Sutekiko’s look as a small Asian girl. Sutekiko decides to go with the Japanese school girl thing, and will call Pamela when she decides on a pseudonym to use. The primary benefit lies in trying to downplay Sutekiko’s combat readiness; if they can do that, they stand to make a killing in the betting circuit. Sutekiko agrees with all this, and after finalizing everything, they indicate that they will see each other at the fight this Saturday.
Upon leaving, Donald also tells Sutekiko that any flirtatious glances she may have received relate to the long-standing rumor that Pamela is bisexual. Just for information. Donald also asks if Sutekiko could do another job for him — could she take his nephew to a school dance? He’s an anime nerd who doesn’t have a date yet. She agrees, and Donald says he will introduce the two later in the week. Sutekiko also goes back to the warehouse to train. That evening, she decides on the name “Chiyo ‘Chiyo-chan’ Mihama” and calls Pamela to let her know.
The following day, Sutekiko goes to work at Kawaii Corner and orders her school girl outfit. She also takes the opportunity to work out at the warehouse.
The next day is fairly busy. She awakens in the morning and checks the news to find that Janet Strom’s mutilated and exsanguinated corpse has been found dead outside Sutekiko’s apartment. Sutekiko is fairly certain this is Sally’s work, and makes a mental note to keep an eye on the news for further developments. Sutekiko also receives correspondence from her government contact, Agent Murach, saying that he has a job, and can they meet around 2:00 PM in the park out behind the Dinosaur Museum? Sutekiko agrees.
At 2:00 PM, Sutekiko meets with Agent Murach in the park, who explains that a last minute change requires her to aid in the climax of a ten-month investigation. An illegal uranium smuggling operation is making a delivery in a couple of weeks, sometime around February 4th. While operations are taking place in the city, they need someone to secure the frigate with the radioactive cargo. It should be guarded, but what they really want is the smuggling ring’s leader, the mysterious “Flying Dutchman.” Never reliably seen, the “Flying Dutchman” is said to be identifiable by a tattoo or brand of the letter “T” on his face. The job is worth $200,000 if she secures the ship and captures the Dutchman, $150,000 if she captures the ship and kills the Dutchman, and $100,000 if he flees. Sutekiko says she will ponder this and get back to him within a day.
Later in the day, Sutekiko also speaks to DJ Inazuma, who asks what she is doing that weekend. When she says she is busy, he asks if they can meet for lunch on Saturday, and she agrees. Donald also calls, inquiring if she can meet his nephew tomorrow. She says she’s available, and they agree to meet at her work, Kawaii Corner, in Trenton. Later in the evening, Sutekiko emails Agent Murach and tells him she should be available for the job.
The next day, Sutekiko drives out to Trenton in the evening to meet Donald and his nephew, Artie Shelton. Sutekiko introduces herself by her real name, Sakaki O’Brien, shooting a look to let Donald know to not repeat it to anyone, and she and Artie get to talking. Artie recognizes her from her job at Kawaii Corner, and it turns out the two have a lot of common ground when it comes to anime. After introductions are made and chatting commences, the groups part, and Donald indicates he will see her the following day. Perhaps they’ll meet for dinner and then go to prepare.
On Saturday, Sutekiko gets lunch with DJ Inazuma. DJ Inazuma starts by indicating that he heard the news about the body outside her apartment, and is she okay? She says she is. After discussion, she indicates that she can’t attend his show tonight because she is participating in an underground boxing match. She explains what she knows, and Inazuma indicates that he’s sad that he probably can’t make it, but he’ll see what he can do. She says she’ll inform him of whatever’s happening, and if they don’t meet this evening, they’ll have to gather again soon.
Then, Sutekiko gets her things together — Donald informed her that things sometimes get chaotic, so she might want to bring her gear — and meets Donald for dinner. They return to the warehouse and make their last minute preparations. Then, they go over to Ricky’s Eatery — fights take place in the basement — and Sutekiko changes and gets her hands taped. She also texts Inazuma to let him know where and when to expect her, if he can make it. Then, she waits.
After the two fights before her are complete, she hears Pamela introducing the fight. She announces veteran fighter Mark Flaherty first, then Sutekiko as “Chiyo-chan.” Sutekiko, trying to come across as an enthusiastic but naive Japanese school girl-type, enters the ring. After announcements are over and the referee calls the fight, they commence.
They start by circling before battle is joined. Sutekiko, maintaining her persona as “Chiyo-chan,” tries her best to go for slaps and jabs. In general, she launches several jabs at Mark while he goes for singular, powerful strikes. The fight only lasts around thirty seconds; despite taking several notable hits and almost losing consciousness, Sutekiko knocks out Mark Flaherty. She is announced the winner of the contest to a mixed response from the crowd, though the overall impression is that she gave a good fight. An enthusiastic spectator even shouts, “Show us your goods!” prompting Sutekiko to flash her panties. Pamela slaps her ass before continuing with her narration, when Donald tells Sutekiko that trouble is coming. A suited man surrounded by three red-headed thugs pushes his way through the crowd, yelling that Donald knew his fighter was experienced simply to throw the fight. Donald tells him that he’s just mad because his fighter was beaten by a little girl, and the man responds by siccing his goons on Sutekiko. They draw knives and clubs while Sutekiko grabs her staff and activates it. The three men launch themselves at her, and each is felled in turn. The last drops his club and goes for a gun in his jacket, but Sutekiko fells him before he gets a shot off. Sutekiko and Donald ask if anybody else would like to cause trouble, and with no takers, they return to Sutekiko’s makeshift dressing room to rest.
With Sutekiko having bet $500 on herself before the fight, Donald goes to collect and returns with $3,000 dollars. She may have made more, but apparently some audience members saw through her ruse and withdrew their bets before the fight started. Donald also pays her $10,000 for her trouble. After everything has been done, Donald sees to it that she gets home safely. Sutekiko also finds she has a text from Inazuma, who apparently saw her bout; she tries to call, but only gets his voicemail. When she gets home, she falls asleep.
The next day, she awakens with the same start as she has the weird dream-impression of warmth followed by an urgency that awakens her. She finds that it is 2:00 PM, and that she has slept for about 12 hours. She checks her messages, and sees that she has a voicemail from Inazuma at about 4:00 AM the previous night, just saying that he saw her fight. She calls him back and he asks how she’s doing and if she needs anything. He offers to get her soup and come over, and she agrees.
In an hour, Inazuma shows up with soup, and indicates that he saw the end of the fight before hers, and then he saw her fight until she was declared the winner. She explains about the ambush at the end of the show, and indicates that she is feeling all right despite her remaining bruises. They hang out and watch television before he takes his leave to let her rest some more, though they say that they will hang out again soon. Before leaving he does make a comment that she ought to wear the sailor suit again. Exhilarated, Sutekiko settles down to rest in the evening.