Chapter Eighteen | Accusations

Eiji stared blankly at his daughter for a moment, trying to think of how to respond as he searched for a way past his daughter's venomous façade.

<You…you don't understand,> he finally said. <You can't…you were far too young at the time.>
<I understand fine…Dad,> Miho said, the final word pronounced with a tone that hovered between hatred and sarcasm. <I'm doing fine on my own. I don't want or need your help, if you can call it that.>
<I understand that you've been hurt and that I can never completely heal the wounds I have caused you. I know I've made mistakes…>
<Bull,> Miho interrupted her father. <You don't know anything. You never even tried to understand.>

She looked past Eiji at Lt. Takama, who looked unnecessarily interested in the events that were transpiring. Switching to English, she continued, whispering the next words. "The only reason you're even here is because if I get accused of murder, your precious company is going to suffer in the media."
"You know better than that…" he father replied, stunned once again.

Shinichi tapped Eiji's shoulder now that the Lieutenant couldn't understand what was going on. Eiji broke out of the trance his daughter's piercing words had put him in long enough for him to turn around and face the lieutenant.

<Your family…err…issues,> he said, <while certainly interesting, have nothing to do with this investigation. Is your daughter prepared to cooperate with your blessing, or do we need to bring your wife here as well?>

<My wife…,> Eiji's thoughts drifted for a second, before snapping back to reality. <No, it's fine. She doesn't need my help it seems. My lawyer is in the other room; even if she doesn't want him present, I do…for legal reasons. Those are my conditions to her testimony.>
<I see. Well then, shall we go ahead, Ms. Tohya?>

Miho removed the sheets that were covering her, revealing her bloodstained uniform as she stood up. <Yes, I'm fine. Let's get this over with, shall we?>

She delivered another glare to her father as she walked past him, slamming the door behind her and Shinichi. Eiji stood alone in the room for a second before moving over to the bed his daughter had occupied just a minute earlier and laying down himself. He placed his hand to his forehead, trying to subdue the beginnings of a headache.


Out in the hall, Miho walked down the hall with Shinichi. Miho was choosing to stay quiet, but Shinichi elected to try and talk to the girl after a few minutes of uncomfortable silence.

<Well, your father certainly is an interesting person, Miho-san. Why haven't I met him before?>
<He's nothing but an arrogant jerk.>
<Well, the conversation I had with him didn't make him seem so bad. I think he's genuinely concerned about you.>
<He's just a good business man, Shinichi-san. He's good at feigning his feelings and manipulating others to get what he wants.>
<So…he's a lot like you, then? Look, why don't you give your dad a chance. It's obvious he cares about you and doesn't want to see you in this mess.>

<Why are you telling me this? Do you think I haven't tried?>
<No, I just think you're the type of person who sees the worst in people, rather than the best.> He opened the door to the conference room they had arrived at.

<That's part of why I think you always seem to end up in trouble.>
He pointed inside, where a suited man – Eiji's lawyer – was already waiting. <Have a seat, Miho-san. I'll be with you in a moment. Relax, if you didn't do anything, you have nothing to worry about.>

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