The Kabuki Dancer

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 12 (v.1) - Part One: The Miko - Chapter 11

Submitted: October 30, 2016

Reads: 171

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Submitted: October 30, 2016

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Okuni and I went to cleanse ourselves in the steaming bath in the back of the house.  It was just as well, for no sooner had we exited then her mother entered the house.  She regarded us with a smile, embracing her daughter, saying, “It is so nice of you to visit, Okuni.  I thought you would be busy with the Kagura dance and preparing for the festival tomorrow.”  Okuni smiled back and gracefully said, “Well, I had a few moments, and I wanted to spend them with my family.” 

Nakamura-san smiled and indicated for us to sit at the table.  Soon tea was served and we were talking about issues at the Shrine and day to day life.  Every once in awhile, Okuni would stroke my leg with her foot beneath the table, or I would let my fingers trail up her arm to just beneath the sight of her mother.  The two of us shared grins that only we could interpret, that signaled our love for each other.

Suddenly, the front screen of the house banged open.  Nakamura-san shrieked and Okuni and I stood abruptly, whirling around to face whoever was in the door.  A shadow stood big and bulky in the doorway, and as my eyes adjusted, a demon from my past took form.I pressed my hand to my mouth to avoid shrieking.

Standing in the doorway was my sister’s destroyer and molester Kurosami.He was considerably older, and had gray in his hair.Yet his black eyes still burned with a lust for me, and I trembled before him.I managed to gasp out, “Kurosami, what are you doing here?”  An evil grin crossed his face as he said, “I believe my daughter can tell you that.”  I gaped as Kumiko sidled in from the street, dressed in a gaudy pink kimono with cranes rather than her usual apprentice miko garb.Kumiko went to her father’s side and grinned wickedly at me, saying, “Here she is father.  Just like I told you.”  She did not seem to notice her father’s wolfish grin that devoured my full figure.

Apparently Kumiko had no idea that her father and I had a past and that he had tried to marry my sister.  It had never been discussed in front of me that Miyuri would have been his second wife, not his first.But this was the last thought on my mind as I shielded Okuni and her mother with my body.  “What is the reason for this invasion and how did you find us?” I stammered.  Kumiko smiled a wicked smile and looked me in the eyes.  “From my dear sister, of course.”  I clenched my fists, saying, “She is mine and Okuni’s friend, she would never tell.  She swore an oath to me.”  Annoyed, Kumiko looked at her father, and Kurosami cracked his knuckles aggressively.  “Sometimes,” he stated, “When you cannot get the truth out of someone, it becomes necessary to use force on them.”

Okuni gasped from behind me, blurting, “What did you do to Hana-chan?”  I held her back with my arm, and Kumiko removed a fan from her sleeve, tapping it open and fanning herself in the heat of August.  “Let’s just say my dear sister will have to learn to play the shamisen with nine fingers instead of ten,” she minced.  In that instant, I saw red and lunged for Kumiko.

Kurosami roughly grabbed me, taking careful care to turn his rough touch into a fondle.  I pulled back, clenching my arms around me like claws, and ground out from between my teeth,  “You will pay for this.”  Kumiko held a hand to her forehead and feinted, saying, “You see father?  What did I tell you?  She is a defiler of women and practices unnatural vices.  Even now, when she is standing here faced with the truth of her crimes, she still cannot contain her lust, and wishes to come for me and do unspeakable things to me.” I spit at her feet, stating, “Don’t flatter yourself, Kumiko.” 

She pulled herself up to her full height, addressing Okuni behind me.  “It is a good thing that I got here when I did, Okuni-san.  Can you imagine what would have happened had Umi here been able to have her way with you, or forced herself upon you.”  Her fan moved faster as she spoke.  “I mean, if it had happened, there would be no way to protect your purity and you would need to step down as a miko within the shrine.  Unless …” she paused for dramatic effect, letting her words sink in, “… something untoward has already occurred.”

I turned around to face Okuni, who was being clutched by her mother.  Nakamura-san’s eyes were wild as she looked between me and my daughter.  “Okuni, is this true?” she asked desperately, her voice shrill.Okuni looked between her mother and me, and opened her mouth to respond.  Before she did so, I spoke up loudly.  “Okuni had nothing to do with this, this was all my doing and within my own mind.  Okuni knew nothing of it, she is innocent.” 

Okuni’s eyes filled with tears and she made to respond, but her mother got to me first.  Reaching me first, her hand slapped hard across my cheek, snapping my head back.Her nails cut into my flesh and left thin sharp red lines on my face.She growled at me, now seeming to be more oni than woman.  “I knew it was a mistake to let an eta into our home,” she spat, sending spittle into my face.  “You would defile my daughter with your perverse ways, to what end?  To rob her of a happy future?  I am disgusted that we ever let a viper like you nest within the bosom of our home.”  She then spat in my face with full force.  Okuni’s hands went to her mouth, as her face became one of sorrow. 

Kurosami came up behind me and tied my arms behind my back.  I struggled, but did not put up much resistance.  Kumiko watched all of it with a look of glee on her face, and once I was tied up strode over and kicked me in the stomach with her sandal.  I fell to the floor, and spit a small bit of blood up.  “I told you not to cross me, eta,” she sneered.  I looked up at her and Kurosami, and hate made my blood hot with rage. 

Kumiko then seemed to remember she was in the presence of a miko, as she bowed quickly to Okuni, saying, “If it pleases you, Okuni-san, my father and I will take this … filth from your home and we will jail her at our house until after the Tanabata Festival concluded.  After all …” I swore I could hear the smirk in her voice, “You do have a Kagura to perform, and any distraction would most clearly distract you from doing your best job.”  Okuni made as if to protest, but a sharp glance from me silenced her.  She looked at me with pain in her eyes, then said softly, “Yes, I feel that would be best.”  Inside I smiled at her for following my instructions, but on the outside I let pain and hurt shine through.  Kurosami pulled me roughly to my feet, and whispered in my ear, “When we get to my estate, eta, you will know what true pain is.”  He then dragged me from the room, as Okuni dissolved into tears and Nakamura-san rushed to comfort her.

Outside, Kurosami thrust me into a wooden cage, my side scraping against the hard wood and leaving ugly red welts.  He then climbed up onto the cart, with his daughter beside him and Rather than fight, I lay back within the filth crusted straw as the cart pulled away, tired and resigned to my fate.  As we did,  I saw Okuni rush outside, her mother following close behind.  I watched as tears rolled down her cheeks as we pulled away, until we turned a corner and her face was lost to the maze of buildings in Izumo.


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