16 December 2062
I wish the boat would go faster. I do not think I like
this "security work" so much. The three ork brothers
seem to enjoy strong-arming the rest of the steerage, but
I only do so because I must. Today, I had to help stop several
fistfights. I think the other passengers are as weary of
these dank holds as I am. Kyoto was no longer my home, but
I have already begun to miss it. I would very much like
to be in Seattle, where I can start over again.
17 December 2062
Today was quieter than yesterday, but Master Daizui always
said the ocean grows calm before it rages. I wonder what
the sea has in store for us. The food here is ample, but
I have finally convinced the orks that they do not understand
how to properly cook rice. They are also still trying to
learn the use of chopsticks, but I worry that this skill
may never be within their grasp. They are a gruff bunch,
but the experience of working with them has taught me a
great deal. I hope I am prepared for what the streets of
Seattle have to offer.
18 December 2062
The ocean has revealed her secrets: our freighter was tossed
by the waves of a strong storm throughout last night and
today. Tensions grew stronger down in the holds, but people
seemed too scared to even think of stirring up trouble.
The ork brothers thought there was "something different
in the air". The ship's crew let us know that the storm
was worsened by the presence of magical creatures. Later,
the navigator sent down word that several sea spirits and
storm spirits had been fueling much of the storm, apparently
to drive the ship away from "their land". I do
not know what these strange beings must be thinking; I was
just happy to discover that the resident mage was able to
appease them. I did my part as well by entertaining many
frightened children with yukar, the ancient Ainu hero stories.
These old stories my people still keep proved very helpful
in calming both the children and their distraught parents.
I do not think story-telling will work so well in most tense
19 December 2062
I awoke today with much excitement. Perhaps I am preparing
myself for our arrival in Seattle in two days. Things have
returned to normal on board, now that the storm has passed.
According to the report the crew sent down, we have "clear
sailing" until we reach port. I will soon be learning
many more of these funny English expressions. When I get
to Seattle, I think I will look up my friend Seiji first.
He sent word almost a year ago that his electronics business
was doing well and that he went by the name "Kitsune"
when conducting his street business. I hope that I can find
accommodations at his temple for at least one night. If
I am fortunate, word of my deeds in Kyoto did not travel
far, so his temple should accept me as they would any pilgrim.
I still think of myself as a monk, but I do not think it
wise to present myself as such to this new temple. My ideals
are no longer in complete agreement with those of Zen, so
I must not make my new home in another temple. My home will
be much the same as most people's, and my temple will be
the streets I choose to wander.
20 December 2062
This morning occur when the ship docked. I tried to answer
the questions that people had, but the orks showed little
interest in helping. When I realized how few of their questions
I could properly answer, I was forced to abandon my efforts.
I returned to my normal duties instead and spent much of
the day reading some of my favorite haiku while I wandered
the holds in search of trouble. As the night grew late,
I retired to my makeshift palette behind some crates and
composed this haiku:
Ocean once again serene
Oh! - the excitement
21 December 2002
Many passengers, including me, slept late today in preparation
for our 3 AM arrival time. I am not exactly sure what to
expect when I step off this ship, but I feel that I will
find my way. My sandals have many miles left in them, and
I have a new world to experience. I have eaten well today
so that I will be able to go a little while longer before
I must eat again. The many years I spent on begging routes
as a young monk helps to keep my appetite small, but I may
have to go without food for a couple of days. I would write
more, but there is much more happening today that requires
22 December 2002
I have fallen in with a group of three people who were
sent, apparently at
Seiji's Kitsune's request, to
retrieve me. I have tried to keep track of who they are
Fifi = Ork woman with a French accent. She appears to be
a shark shaman. Cooks well.
Arrow = Elf woman. Very quick. I think she is a physical
adept. Has a shotgun.
Titus = Human man with strange hair. Scrawny, but a capable
mage. Too many cell phones.
I am now indebted to these people, due to the losses they
incurred retrieving me. I intend to honor my obligations
and repay this debt with my services. I am not sure that
a simple street monk is suited to their line of work, but
I think I will learn much by working off my debt to them.
Since I owe much more than 10 k¥, I will probably spend
a long time working with them.
From the disastrous events at the dock, I have already
learned much. First of all, I do not like these LoneStar
"police". They seem like nothing more than mercenaries,
and they are deceitful: they are not from Texas. Croissants
in the morning are good after one has received healing magic
and recovered from many bad injuries suffered at the hands
of LoneStar. I must remember to give back Titus's cell phone
when I get one of my own.
Now, I have been deposited at the gates of Kitsune's local
temple, but I have stopped to write in my journal and collect
myself before entering. Once I decide to enter, I will have
much upon which to meditate. Perhaps the monks can spare
a small bowl's worth of rice.