Dragon Reborn (Daniel Gate)
Éponine’s eyes met Daniel’s and a torrent of images flooded his mind unbidden.
“Ah,” said the old man, “that is not the form of payment I had in mind.”
Daniels face burned with embarrassment. The man just smiled as he took a chain and pendant from the box.
“Do you know what this is, Gate-san?”
The pendant was an exquisite obsidian dragon. It was looking back and blowing a jet of ruby flame between jade wings.
“Sou omoi-masen,” said Daniel with regret.
“You speak Japanese. A common skill for a delivery boy?” asked the man, but continued without waiting for an answer. “It’s a Black Dragon.”
Daniel’s heart skipped a beat. “The Kokuryū-kai. An ultra-nationalist wing of the Yakuza. Terrorism and assassinations. They disappeared completely after World War II.”
“Hai. Now it would appear that they are back and we have much to discuss,” he said as a serving girl appeared, “what will you drink?”
“Kohhi gyunyu kudasai,” Daniel replied. Sake may be called for, but the coffee would keep him alert.