Higashi no Wadatsumi, Nishi no Soukai
<The Sea God in the East, the Vast Sea in the West>

Copyright Fuyumi Ono, Koudansya, 1994


~ Chapter One~


Itan looked to his back. Although there are always no other people when Itan and others gather, Itan wants to reconfirm that there are nobody around.

gThat is...h

gInformation from the streets. It was said that Gen Province was getting much wealthier recently. Each month the soldiers from the provincial army of Gen spent a lot of money at the red-light district many times. They came empty handed, but they return to Gen with a lot of luggage.h

gWhat are they stocking up from Kankyuu?h

gThere is no problem on food, so maybe it is weapons?h

gHowever,h Syukou said as he tilted his head.
gI donft think they can raise so many weapons as to prepare for rebellion. Buying so many weapons from the streets will definitely make rumors.h

Syouryuu laughed and turned his head to Seisyou.
gKankyuu has got the weapon chamber of the imperial army, right?h

Seisyou narrowed his eyes. Arenft the managers of the weapon chamber letting the weapons flow out freely? Kyou-ou had raked up an unusually large amount of weapons. Selling the weapons helped supplement the kingdomfs budget, but the outflow of weapons is so large that the weapons became worthless soon afterwards. Therefore, a lot of weapons are piling up at the weapon chamber even now.

gBut, the lord of Gen Province...h

Itan nodded at Syukoufs words.
gIt was said that he hid deep at his residence and didnft came out. When Kyou-ou was alive, he feared of the emperorfs blaming. When Kyou-ou was deceased, he feared of his peoplefs revenge. Now, he feared of your majestyfs dismissal from his post. It was also said he held grudges against your majesty.h

g eCornered rats will even bite cats.f Those who have their minds set are much more scary. Also, the vice lord of Gen Province controlled the provincefs affairs, didnft he. He was a son of the lord of Gen Province... Called Atsuyu (R) or something.h

Itan blinked.

gYour majesty sure knows well.h

gI get my information from the streets. Rumors among the people are not something to make light of.h

gI see...h

Catching a glimpse of Itanfs impressed expression, Syukou cleared his throat lightly.
gMay I suggest a bit more, your majesty.h

gWhat is it?h

gIt would be better for your majesty, with such a respectable position as the emperor of all provinces, to avoid descending to the level of the general public and act like a spy!h

Syouryuu looked up to the ceiling, as if saying, gHere it goes again.h Rokuta laughed, and stood up from his seat.

gWhat are you doing, Rokuta?h

Rokuta turned back as he retreated from the room.
gThe topic turned to something irrelevant to me, so Ifll take my leave.h

-- End of Chapter One --

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