stories

When The Shogun Awoke - Chapter 2 - page 5

"Just a minute" Checking Shimada's attack with a gesture, the chief-of-staff faced Kinjiro again. "I'm second to none in my desire to see you live here comfortably just as before. From your perspective, too, if you stay here you can afford a certain amount of luxury by charging reporters for interviews."
"What? Charging them for interviews?" Kinjiro looked up. "Was I getting money from newspaper reporters?"
"That's right. Mr. Shogun." Kanasugi spoke rapidly. "We charged them from fifty sen to one yen for each interview, and two to three yen if they wanted your picture. One reporter gave us as much as five yen."
"A fortune!" Kinjiro was stunned. "Five yen can buy you a koku of rice."
"Well, prices are higher now. For three yen you can buy a geisha for a night. Oh, my goodness! What did I say?" Kanasugi blushed in a flurry and continued hastily. "Mr. Shogun always handed the money over to me telling me to use it for the other patients. The reporters called him greedy because he squeezed interview fees out of them. But he was extremely generous to us."
Again using the same gesture, the chief-of-staff restrained the nurse, who kept talking with her body leaning forward. He said to Kinjiro, "I would like you to stay at this hospital. But on one..." He cast his eyes down and hesitated. "Condition... I would like you to be your former self, to be Shogun Ashihara."
"What? What?" Shimada reddened in fury. "That means forcing a patient who's come back to normal to fake insanity."
"No, I'm not necessarily forcing him."
Shimada cried shaking a finger at the chief-of-staff, "It's nothing other than forcing. You are threatening to throw him out of the hospital unless he pretends to be insane. That's a violation of human rights." The chief-of-staff turned red and leaned forward slightly. "Now I'm convinced. I suspected you were a communist."
"He is speaking for Mr. Shogun's good." The nurse turned upon the doctor. "How dare you defy the chief-of-staff."
"Shut up! For the good of the Shogun? The truth is it's for your own good!" The doctor rose and screamed. "All you want is the money from the reporters. You, too, bitch! You've been hoarding kickback from the poor madman'"
The nurse shrieked hysterically exposing the red inside her mouth. "When did I get kickback from him? I never spent even a penny on myself. All the money I got from him went to the hospital for the good of all the patients. For the good of the entire hospital!" She burst out crying. "That's too much, too cruel."
"Hey, you! Watch what you are saying," the chief-ofstaff, too, began to shout standing up on his feet. "The money for your research comes from the interviewing fees. You know that very well, don't you'?"
"Each time Shogun Ashihara made a story, they also printed your name as a commentator on his disorder. You've been taking advantage of the madman for your own publicity!" The doctor cried at the top of his voice. "You have no professional conscience as a doctor. What's important to you is your title. That's what you are clinging to."
"You've finally said it," the chief-of-staff shouted back. "You are jealous of me, because they printed only my name, not yours, even though you were the doctor in charge. That got on your nerves. And that's why you find fault with whatever I do."
"Shut up!" Shimada yelled in a frenzy and jumped at the chief-of-staff.
The chief-of-staff began to strangle his opponent, yelling. The nurse kept weeping.
"Stop! Please stop!" Kinjiro covered his ears with his hands to block out the intolerable noise. "My head is ringing. Help! The noise is driving me mad!"