<Miho-chan, do you think that Hayasaka-san will be recognized when we come to the Cave tonight? >

Miho looked at Ping and frowned, <Probably, it won't matter though. The Cave is a cutting edge sort of place. Hayasaka has been out of the limelight for several years now so I doubt that she'll have any problems.

Miho suddenly stopped, they were near enough to her home now that she could see it. But something didn't smell right. She put her hand on Ping's arm and looked at her, <Ping, are you carrying that pistol that my brother let you have? >

Ping looked at her strangely, <Yes, I always keep it with me. It's not safe to leave something like that just lying around. Why do you ask? >

Miho glanced back toward her home, <I believe that there may be someone waiting for me. I can smell them. > Ping smiled and nodded, <Okay, what should we do? > Her smile broadened as Miho laid out her plan.

The big man waited patiently in the alley for the girls to come home. He had seldom felt fear in his life but right now he was on the verge of panic. That girl was dangerous and she was made even more so by the support of the robot. He leaned heavily on his expensive cane and began a series of breathing exercises to calm himself. This meeting had to go well and it had to be face to face, he couldn't even risk a cell phone call first.

The man straightened up as he heard footsteps approaching. It was Ping. She turned to walk up the alley and stopped three meters away from him.

<Hi, are you waiting for someone? >

His mouth was dry as tried to answer but no words came out. Ping had pulled the SOCOM .45 from her backpack and was attaching the silencer to the muzzle. She continued to smile as her earblades flashed red. <Don't mind me, I just don't want to disturb the neighborhood if you should be some sort of pervert looking for young girls to molest. >

There was a fluttering sound in the air as Miho dropped from the rooftop to land beside Ping. She landed in a squat and stood to face him. Miho was not smiling.

<Why aren't you dead? >

Miho's sudden appearance seemed to break something loose in his head. <Inspector Sonoda owed me some favors. He has access to…unconventional medical treatments and they were able to resuscitate me. I was pronounced dead in the ambulance. Five more minutes and I'd have been a vegetable. >

Miho blinked rapidly as tears filled her eyes, <Is your name still Junpei, or did they take that away too? >

Ping scowled at Junpei and then looked uncertainly as Miho, <Why isn't he talking funny? That can't be Junpei, you broke his neck and fractured three of his vertebra. If he lived he should be in a wheelchair. >

Miho looked at Ping in horror, <How do you know that? I never told you about that. >

Ping shrugged; <The Sisters now have full access to the Police Database. They gave me all the files on Largo; Junpei's death is part of that. >

Both Junpei and Miho stared at Ping; Miho broke the long silence that followed this revelation <The police knew? >

Ping nodded, <They knew ahead of time. They knew that the Head Ninja had contracted you for discipline of a rogue Ninja. > She sighed; <Sonoda must have files outside of the main database. We'll have access to those very soon though. >

Miho shook her head; <We'll get to that later. Right now I'd like to know what he wants. > The two girls turned to face Junpei once more.

He looked down; <I want to know what happened to L33t Master. That's all. > He looked up at Miho; <Can you help me? >

Miho nodded, <I know where he is but I don't think that you'll want to see him. He's changed. >

Junpei looked into her eyes, she suddenly realized that he was a very handsome man without the mask. <I do want to see him. If only to tell him that I'm sorry. I should have stopped him from doing the things that he did. >

Miho looked at Ping then back at Junpei; <Ping will have to be the one who makes that call. The Sisters can get you in with Ed's good graces. I can't. > Finally she smiled, <So, where did the good grammar come from? >

Junpei smiled back, he could finally feel himself relaxing as Ping put the heavy handgun away. <It was like the mask, a Ninja thing. > He sighed deeply, <I'll have to hunt a job soon and I can't give my old job as a reference. >

Miho walked over to Junpei and hugged him; she could feel the body cast under the long leather trench coat he wore. He stiffened briefly then returned the hug. She looked up at him and smiled, <I'll bet that I can find something for you to do. I have connections. >

As she broke away from the embrace her mind raced ahead, she'd have to find a safe place for him to recuperate from the retrovirus. Junpei would understand of course, nothing in this world is ever free

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