Chapter 1: The Tokyo Branch
Team One, Portland Oregon, USA (Headquarters):
- Grifter – N/A
- Hacker – Alec Hardison
- Hitter – Eliot Spencer
- Mastermind – N/A
- Thief – Parker
Team Two, Syracuse New York, USA:
- Grifter – Meggie Collins
- Hacker – Chaos
- Hitter – Quinn
- Mastermind – James Sterling
- Thief – Archie Leach
Team Three, Moscow Russia:
- Grifter – Kazumi Ryouko
- Hacker – Momohara Ai
- Hitter – Yuri Arbatov
- Mastermind – Mikhail Arbatov
- Thief – Yoh
Team Four, Tokyo Japan:
- Grifter – Liu Feilong
- Hacker – Suoh Kazumi
- Hitter – Asami Ryuichi
- Mastermind – Kirishima Kei
- Thief – Takaba Akihito
❤❤ It's So Good To Be Bad ❤❤
Parker frowned as she took in their four men before her. They had requited them well over five months ago. Since than, they has come very far. Proving to be even better than their reputations claimed. The Tokyo branch of Leverage Incorporated was in good hands.
Kirishima Kei was smart. A genius. He was strict with his rules and kept his crew in line. His men respected and gave him their loyalty though they had known each other less than a year. Not one of the jobs under his watch had yet to fail in the last five months. He had been a good choice for a mastermind.
Suoh Kazumi had been another good choice. He was tall and heavily muscled. People often mistook him for being slow and stupid. Something the computer genius enjoyed using to his advantage. The man could hack anything from your grandma's computer to Japan's military and everything in between. As her husband, Alec Hardison was so find of saying: "It's the age of the geek."
For their grifter, they had Liu Feilong. Liu Feilong was beautiful with long silky black hair. He had light brown eyes that were fringed with long thick eyelashes. Feilong was tall and slim of build. And could totally kick your ass. Feilong was a master of multiple types of martial arts and other types of fighting. Feilong's skills were great. He could seduce any mark into giving him what he wanted. And though he was completely male, Liu Feilong cold play the role of a female as if he were one and the mark never knew the difference.
Last there was Asami Ryuichi. The hitter. Asami had impressed Eliot and Quinn with his skills. Both men had taken on the young Japanese man in a practice fight. The practice fight had quickly turned into a full out sparring natch. The three men enjoying themselves and bonding over bruised knuckles and split lips. Not much was known about this one. He was the most quiet of the four. Often watching and observing. He was silent and quick. Parker and Hardison had speculated if the man was really a ninja. Eliot had once pointed out that Asami resembled the samurai of old.
The Tokyo team was good. Very good. But they could be do much better. They needed one more person. Someone who complimented them. They needed a thief. Sadly, there was no one that seemed able to fill this role. She had sent over many thieves for the Tokyo team and each one had stormed off. Complaining about so many things, that Parker couldn't even count them all. They had to find that one thief who would complete them.
Chapter 2: Thief
He could not believe it. Him of all people. Asami stormed into his room, locking the door behind him. He tool out his laptop. In less then a minute, Asami was viewing every street camera in Tokyo. Suoh had hacked into them months ago.
Focusing solely on the cameras in the area he'd been traveling through, Asami looked for he culprit who had stolen his wallet. An hour later, Asami was sitting back with a sigh. It had been no use. Asami had been trained since birth to keep a low profile. Staying out of sight of cameras was second nature to him. This of course meant that the thief too, was out of sight of the cameras.
Somewhere not to far away sat a young cheeky blond in a tree. He grinned happily as he went through the wallet he had snatched. There were no credit cards, just cash which he pocketed. Pulling out the ID, he read out loud.
"Moya Ransuki. What kind of made up name is that?" Oh he was very aware of the wallet's owner's real name.
"Age twenty five." He couldn't help the snort of disbelief that escaped him. "Only in his dreams. Height, six foot nothing. Only if you cut off from the knees down. Weight, 120 pounds. Yeah right. He's far to big. Eyes, brown. Nope, I'm pretty sure that their golden. Hair, red. I'd shoot myself if that's true. He just wouldn't look good with red hair. Nope! Naha. Never."
It may have been have been years since he had last seen his "older brother' but he still remembered him in all his perfection. He also remembered that love he had for Ryuichi.
Faces were glum that morning. It was hard to swallow down the fact that their compound had been broken into sometime during the night. No clue had been left to identify the intruder. Not a single sight of the intruder could be seen on the cameras. There were no finger prints, fibers, hairs or foot prints. Nothing.
One of Suoh's precious computers was taken. Antique daggers had been taken from Feilong's room. Sending the beautiful Chinese man into a fit. The man really was a drama queen. Kirishima had lost files. Asami was the only one to not have lost something. Wallet not included.
After hours of searching and putting in new safety measures, everyone pasted for their own rooms. Asami headed straight for his ensuite bathroom. The hot water of the shower cascading down his tired, sore body was heaven. His golden eyes closed and a sigh of pleasure left him.
His body was just beginning to relax when he sensed it. Someone was watching him. Asami kept his eyes closed and continued on with his shower. Not allowing for the intruder to realize that Asami was aware of him. He left the shower and made his way into the bedroom. Shock stopped him in his tracks at the sight on his bed.
"Akihito…" Asami's voice was a breathless whisper
Chapter 3: Reunion
"Hello Ryuichi. Long time no see. Hmm... Perhaps I should call you Moya Ransuki?" Akihitio held up the wallet he had stolen the previous day.
Asami ignored the taunt. "What are you doing here Akihitio?"
"My job of course."
"Get out of here Akihitio."
"How rude. Is that anyway to treat your newest team member?"
"Don't you 'Akihito' me."
Akihitio jumped up from the bed and marched over to Asami. Standing on tiptoe, Akihitio wrapped his arms around Asami's neck. Pressing himself against that hard wet body.
"I've missed you Ryu."
Akihitio pressed his lips against Asami's the older man resisted and in retaliation, Akihitio bit his lip hard. Drawing blood.
"It's been twelve years since we last saw each other Ryuichi. Haven't you missed me?"
Asami sighed. "Yes Akihito, I missed you too. How have you been?"
"Baby. It supposed to be, 'how have you been baby'.
"Your still such an ass! Ghah, I can't believe you! No change at all!"
Akihitio stomped from the bedroom. Not caring about his lack of clothing, Asami followed behind. Akihitio marched all the way to the living room and plopped down on the couch. Asami stared down at the younger man, arms crossed over his naked chest. Shortly after their arrival, Kirishima, Suoh and Feilong entered. The large screen clicked on and their three bosses appeared on the screen.
"Good evening Tokyo branch." Parker's voice was bright and cheerful. As always.
"I see you have already arrived Akihitio. I trust that all was well in your travel?" Elliot spoke.
"Members of the Tokyo branch, I would like to introduce your newest member and theif; Takaba Akihitio. Take good care of him. He won't let you down." Hardson informed them.
"Bye." Parker waved. And with that, the screen went blank.
Chapter 4: The Beginning
Twenty three years ago...
The wailing of a babe is what woke him from his slumber in the silent forest. Slowly he opened his eyes and allowed to adjust to the darkness. Laying motionless, he scanned the forest. Looking for any sign of unnatural movement. The wailing continued. It was not an animal - it was the wrong time of year for that. So it was human, but it shouldn't be. This forest was hundreds of miles away from any human civilization.
The sound of a twig snapping drew his a attention to the right. A young girl - no more than 18, ran out into the space beneath his tree. She was breathing hard and he could smell the fear rolling off her in waves. In her arms was the wailing baby. One tiny arm popped out of the blanket the baby was wrapped in.
His eyes narrowed. What was she doing here? How did she come to even be here? This forest was sacred. No humans were allowed to venture into it but for his own family. The thundering of many feet caught his attention. Twenty men stormed in the area beneath his tree. They were armed and had the air of seasoned killers about them. The men surrounded the woman, guns trained on her. One kicked her in the back of the knees, sending her crashing down to the forest floor. Babe still clutched tightly to her chest.
Another man stepped forward. This one held no weapon and wore a well tailored suit. Despite the twenty well seasoned killers, this man held a far more dangerous air. He was the kind that killed with words instead of weapons. He took what he wanted without asking and would stab his own mother in the back just because he could. And the twelve year old boy up in the tree knew him well.
Takaba Haru was a villain unlike any other. He was single handedly responsible for the death of the many members of the Asami clan. The clan the boy was a part of. Asami Ryuichi had only been five years old when men stormed his family's home. They had murdered his parents and elder sister right before Taka Haru's feet. The bastard had laughed, enjoying their deaths. Ryuichi had escaped only because his sister had hidden him away in a hidden room before joining their parents in battle. It had saved him, but it hadn't stopped him from seeing their lives ended. He had stayed in that room for over a week before his grandfather found him.
Ryuichi and his grandfather were the only Asamis left in the world. So many had died because of Takaba Haru. The man wanted their land. The land they had held for thousands of years. Stupid, evil, greedy politician that he was.
"Oh Lydia, did you really think that you could escape me?"
"Please, please just let us go. I won't tell anyone."
"Oh I know you won't tell anyone Lydia. Now give me my son and we'll all go back home. Forgetting any of this even happened."
Lydia clutched her son tighter. "No. I will not let you harm him."
"Harm him?" Takaba Haru pressed a hand to his chest as if hurt. "Lydia, why wou—"
"I know what you plan to do to my son. What you did to all the others who came before him. I won't allow it."
"You have no say in it Lydia." He nodded to one of the men. The man aimed his gun and fired. Lydia fell dead to the forest floor. Her child clutched to her still chest.
Ryuichi saw red. Rage boiled beneath his skin. Without thought, he acted. Stalking his pray as he made their way through the forest. One by one, he slit their throats until Takaba Haru was all that remained.
Sneaking up behind his enemy, Ryuichi shoved a knife into the back of each of the man's knees. Takaba Haru collapsed, the babe falling from his careless limbs. Ryuichi paid no mind to the angrily wailing babe. He approached his pray once again. He struck without being seen. Slicing through flesh as if it were butter. Takaba Haru screamed but Ryuichi did not stop until he had slowly bled the vile man dry.
Coming back to himself, Ryuichi picked the wailing babe up carefully. He checked the boy over, relieved when he found no sign of injury. He wrapped the babe up once again and retreated back to where Lydia had fallen. As the night passed, Ryuichi worked. He built a carrier for the babe and a stretcher for Lydia. As the first hour of a new day struck, Ryuichi found himself in the deepest part of the forest. There, stood a large shrine built to honor the forest. It had been built centuries ago by the Asami clan. Many great Asami clan leaders and warriors had been hurried there.
Laying the now slumbering babe upon the shrine's table. Assuring the babe would not fall or be injured, Ryuichi set to building a small pyre for Lydia.
~ ɩt'ى ɠɷɷɖ tɷ bҽ baɖ ~
The sun was just edging up over the horizon as Ryuichi set fire to Lyda's pyre. He held the whimpering babe, rocking him and whispering soothing words. The wind was gentle, like the caress of a mother upon her child's cheek. It took the ashes of Lydia of into the forest to join with those of the ancient Asamis. He had not known her, she had not been an Asami but she had fought and died to protect her son.
As the last of the flames burned out, Ryuichi gathered his things and the baby boy, ready to head home.
~ ɩt'ى ɠɷɷɖ tɷ bҽ baɖ ~
Ryuichi stared at the young blond man standing before him. Had it really been twelve years since he had last seen him? When his grandfather died, Ryuichi had left his family home and everything that went with it behind him. Akihito included. Akihito had sobbed as he watched his older brother - his mentor, his father walked out the door. His small twelve year old body trembling with his sobs. He had begged, but Ryuichi did not stop. He couldn't stop. He had to leave it all behind.
He walked out and left all that was the Asami clan in Akihito's all to small hands. The long, ancient history of the Asami clan. All the warriors, samurais, ninjas, daimyos, shoguns, traditions and land. All of it was Akihito's to bear and teach to the next generation, if Akihito were to have any children.
Ryuichi swallowed hard as his gaze was met with fire filled blues.
Chapter 5: Settling In
Akihito was given the open room located right next to Ryuichi's. Kei, Feilong and Kazumi welcomed their new their with open warmth and acceptance. Ryuichi however, was an entirely different matter. He was grumpy, gloomy and forever glowering at everyone. He was not pleased to have Akihito there and he let everyone know it. He had immediately called Hardison, Parker and Elliott to pitch a bitch fit, as Akihito called it. They turned def ears to him. Leaving Ryuichi to go pout in his room.
A month in...
It was their first mission for all five of them. A young couple had come to them in the hopes they could retrieve the couple's grandmother's statue. It was an family heirloom passed down each generation to the eldest daughter. The lady's mother had died many years before and so the statue was to go to the young lady. However, her grandmother had recently had her items valued for insurance and last will reasons. The company who was in charge of overseeing the valuing was well known and seen as the best in their field.
Or so it would seem. In reality, the company was owned by a notorious rare items collector. The collector, Harmond Neil was a half Japanese half British businessman. He had lived in Japan most of his life and had dominated the business world for many years. He was not well liked, but many women were after him anyways. Where there was money, there were those who wanted it. Harmond Neil used his company as a way to find those rare gems he coveted. Such is what happened to the young lady's grandmother.
So tonight as all the rich, powerful and famous gathered in Harmond Neil's large mansion; so did they. Kazumi kept to his office at the headquarters, running everything from there. Feilong went in as Chamon Emily-Rose, a beautiful Chinese heiress. With Ryuichi acting as her overly stuffy bodyguard and chaperone. Kei stayed behind the scenes as one of the many nameless wait staff hired for the evening. He watched over his team and directed them as well as made adjustments to the plan as needed. As for Akihito, he played back up. In case Harmond did not fall for Emily-Rose.
However, it would seem that all was going according to Kei's plan. Harmond fell for Feilong's fake persona and he fell hard.
Ever the professional, Feilong did not allow his eyes to roll as the mark's hand once again squeezed his ass. Instead he his his mouth as he giggled cutely at the man's actions. Pretending to enjoy such misbehavior. Feilong placed one hand upon Harmond's chest.
"Oh darling Neil! I heard you have a most dazzling private collection. Please allow me to see it." Feilong batted his lashes enticingly.
Harmond's eyes glazed over with lust. "Of course my beauty. Just this way."
With his hand around Emily-Rose's waist, Hsrmond Neil entered his personal office. He went straight to the large safe in one wall. "I hold my favorite prices right in here."
Smiling, he spun the dial. Unlocking the safe. Walking into it, he led Emily-Rose to his newest addition. A statue of two little girls sitting in a meadow. It was made of gold but did not look tacky for it. It was obviously very old and had been lovingly made. It was just what Feilong wanted. Moving fast, Feilong slid a needle into Harmond Neil's neck. The man fell to the safe floor unconscious. Smiling happily, Feilong took the statue and headed off for home. A job well done.
Hazel eyes watched as Feilong left the safe and office. Office door closed, deft feet stepped onto the floor without a sound. No one had seen him hidden up in the rafters of the office. Ignoring the open safe, he made his way silently to Harmond's desk. Knealing, he slid thin metal rods into the ancient safe's lock he found there. With a snick, the lock popped open. Reaching in, he took the only thing that was to be found there.
Chapter 6: Fear
SO I HAD WISHED TO DO THIS STORY MORE ALONG THE LINES OF LEVERAGE. SADLY HOWEVER, I HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO CAPTURE THAT WORLD. SO IT IS FOCUSED AS A FINDER STORY SET IN LEVERAGE'S WORLD WITH MY OWN TWIST OF AN ALTERNATIVE UNIVERSE. I HOPE EVERYONE WILL STILL ENJOY IT THOUGH.
Time went on. Missions came and went. Ryuichi settled into having Akihito a part of the team. His mood eased and he began to smile in a way he had not done in many years. He had forgotten just how happy Akihito made him. The silly antics the blond was capable of. His jokes and his simple cheerful demeanor. They were things Ryuichi had missed far more than he was willing to admit to.
So two years later, when Akihito failed to return home after a simple mission; Ryuichi cracked. He had tried to remain calm. Tell himself that Akihito would often disappear. But one day turned into another then soon, an entire week had gone by.
Kazumi checked every camera feed in Japan, as well as ones in other countries. However, as a member of the Asami clan, Akihito wouldn't be caught dead on a camera. They were no records of Akihito or anyone fitting his description being arrested - something that was possible as Akihito was a cheeky brat you loved to cause trouble. Nor were there any signs he was in a morgue. Which left only one option. Takaba.
Ryuichi had killed Takaba Haru twenty five years ago. Along with his men. That didn't mean the Takaba family was no longer a threat however. No. The remaining Takaba family was just a big a problem as Haru had been. The men were vile. Taking advantage of the young, lost and weak. They were greedy and murderous. Dipping their fingers into every single dirty pot available. After bringing Akihito home, Ryuichi had begun to dig into the Takaba family businesses and history. His grandfather helped, but they found little past what they already knew.
In the end, they were left with the knowledge that if the Takabas learned of Akihito's existence, they would take him back. And that would not be good at all.
Chapter 7: Trapped
Akihito glared at the men standing before him. The men were far taller than any human had the right to be. Muscle was packed so tightly on them that they looked like a bubbling mass about to explode. Like something out of an anime. They all had bald heads and gun metal eyes. Akihito found himself eternally grateful that he had not ended up like these bastards.
He did not feel pity for them however. No, every last one of these ugly, inhuman men had a good life. They were the sons of the Takaba family after all. Bred upon innocent women and underaged girls, who've been kidnapped and sold upon the flesh market. Some had even been kidnapped by the Takaba family personally. The woman and girls were brought to the Takaba family mansion, where they were held captive. From documents he had stolen, Akihito knew that they under went intense medical examination. Those who failed, were executed. The ones who passed, were locked up and used as broodmares for the Takaba men.
The children born in that world were tested for imperfections. If an imperfection was found, the child was killed and tossed away. As if it were unimportant. If a healthy child was born male, they were biologically modified until they became like the abominations standing before Akihito now. Healthy girls were kept locked away. The only records of their existence locked away in the documents of the Takaba family. The documents he had stolen never stated what happened to them, but Akihito could guess.
The door leading into the room he was in, opened. An elderly man with solid gray hair, brown eyes and of average height entered. He wore a pair of slate gray pants, a hideous pale pink shirt and way too expensive shoes. Akihito recognized him instantly. Takaba Haideki. Father to Takaba Haru, head of the Takaba family and Akihito's grandfather.
Akihito showed no emotion as the old man walked a circle around him. The man ran a finger along one of Akihito's cheeks. He didn't flinch, despite the disgust raging in his stomach. Takaba Haideki came to a stop in front of Akihito. His brown eyes holding insanity deep within them.
"I would introduce myself, but I am quite sure you already know who I am. We have been looking for you for some time number five one six.
"We Takabas were devastated when your traitor of whore mother kidnapped you and ran off. We had thought you dead for some time after we learned of your father Haru's death. It was not until one of our spies finally located the Asami clan home, that we learned otherwise.
"We Takabas have worked hard to eradicate the Asami clan." The old man sneered. "They are vile, worthless creatures!" Hatred blended in with that insanity shining in Takaba Haideki's eyes. "We were so surprised to learn that youngling Ryuichi had a son. Especially a son a mear twelve years younger than himself. So we investigated.
"Imagine our surprise and seething anger when we did a DNA test on on you and learned you were one of ours. That bastard of a child had stolen you with the aid of your traitor mother. He then claimed you as his own son and raised you!" Takaba Haideki spit as he spoke. So enraged, he was.
"But that no longer matters. Here you are. Returned to us and your rightful home. All on your own." The old man smiled and hugged Akihito. Ignoring the iron shackles binding him to a chair.
When the muscle head guards grabbed him and his shackles, Akihito did not resist. He had an agenda and would see it through. No matter what came his way.
~ ɩt'ى ɠɷɷɖ tɷ bҽ baɖ ~
It was not a place one wanted to find themselves in. Deep beneath the Takaba mansion was series of subbasements. The first of the subbasements was a training center for the modified Takaba males. One floor beneath that, were the offices for the doctors and scientists Next floor was the nursery for the male born babies. The forth subbasement held the biological modification rooms.
So proud of the Takaba family's work, Haideki took Akihito on a grand tour of all they had. Akihito watched as a series of scientist dissected an unconscious baby boy. Placing all kinds of weird looking instruments inside him. It was like a scene from a horror sci-fi movie. It made Akihito's stomach churn and twist upon itself.
The fifth floor held Takaba babies born female. The young girl's ages ranged from newborns to eight years old. They all wore pink hospital like gowns and looked well kept, yet they were all locked away. As if they were in a jail cell or some kind of backwards mental hospital. None of them spoke nor looked their way. A few coward away as a few males approached them.
"These here inferior creatures were fortunate to be born of Takaba blood. As such, they are useful and superior to any other unfortunately born female. However, being female still makes them a lower organism. As such, they receive no form of education. Silence is enforced and no form of communication is taught to them. Those who do not stay in line, have their tongues removed as punishment. They are forbidden from learning to walk or crawl. Any movement will be done by the male they are assigned to. It is the hope of the Takaba family to one day be rid of any and all females."
The smile Takaba Haideki gave sickened Akihito. He once again thanked his mother for being strong enough to save both her and him. Akihito refused to allow shame to have come from this family to claim him. Born to them, by them, he may be. But he had not been raised by them. He had been given a chance at a true life, and he held fast to it. Everyday was an adventure and a chance to learn and do something new. It was no his mission to end the Takaba family's sickness upon this world.
When they reached the lowest floor, Akihito learned that his birth family was far worse than he had ever imagined. Rooms lined the subbasement. Each one containing a woman or girl of child baring age. Some of those woman and girls were Takabas. Haideki was gleeful in his telling of how when the Takaba females were of age, they were sent down here to begin their life as "birthers", as he called his female prisoners.
"Each female born Takaba is assigned a male born Takaba. As you saw upstairs, that make is responsible for the female. They feed them, cloth them, wash, dress and medicate them. When the female comes of child baring age, they are sent here. The male continues his responsibilities of care, but he now has a new duty. To breed his assigned female until she is to old to do so. Once that female becomes to old, she is disposed of and the male is assigned a new female. Now, if the male dies, the female is simply assigned a new female."
Reaching the end of the tour, Haideki had reached a decision He had thought to train this boy - number five one six- as one of their soldiers, but he had not been raised by them. He had become tainted by the outside world, and corrupted by that vile Asami clan. He was no better than a traitor. Just like that whore who birthed him. Still, number five one six was of Takaba blood. They could not waste that. The boy never saw the needle coming. He gasped as it stabbed into his neck. Hitting the plunger, Haideki sent the seditave speeding through his returned grandson.
~ ɨt's ɢօօɖ tօ ɮɛ ɮaɖ ~
Time continued to pass with no sign of Akihito. Ryuichi knew that Hus worse fears had come true. He did not speak of it to the team however. It was not their concern, not their fight. Or so he thought.
As a month passed, Ryuichi headed from the headquarters. Only to be stopped by his team. Each wore a serious look on his face. "I need to leave. Move." Ryuichi growled.
"No." Kei spoke softly. "Akihito is a part of our team. He is family to us."
~ ɩt'ى ɠɷɷɖ tɷ bҽ baɖ ~
The world was a blur as he came to. His stomach cramped with hunger and his throat was dry. His head was pounding. He shifted, trying to figure out where he was. He couldn't remember anything after entering the Takaba mansion on the arm of some politician.
"AAAAAAHHHHHHHH!" Akihito screamed, his eyes closing. Tears formed in his eyes and he panted from the pain.
When he regained consciousness, Akihito found himself in a tiny room - a cell, wearing a pink hospital gown. He swallowed, knowing that pink gown meant something, but he just couldn't remember what it was.