Finding Murakami

(October 2009)

“You know, Saïd, Tantra teaches that when a man has his pinky in the anus of a woman, his ring finger and middle finger in her yoni, and his thumb on her clitoris, "he is holding one of the mysteries of the universe in his hand".” Isham was wondering why Mr Lee was telling him that while accompanying him toward Jenna's room. Mr Lee... Isham was smiling internally. The whole chain of events who had led him here, where he was now, was so complex, so subtle. And today, he could say the operation was a complete success. The infiltration had been a long, difficult process, but eventually he had located Mr Lee, and, as Saïd, gained his confidence and an invaluable amount of intelligence detailing the fine structure of the organization. During all these years, he hadn't lost his primary objective from sight: find Jenna. “These three girls are in fact a unique person; her name is Jenna. She is what I offer to my closest collaborators, and they are never disappointed.” Mr Lee had told. Sure enough, Mr Lee was the best when it came to give a special treatment to his business partners. It was at that moment that Isham had understood that after so many years, his mission had come to an end. When he would be back in the agency he would be recognized as no less than the best undercover in the world. A unique distinction, that only the inner circle would know about and discreetly praise.

Back to business. His ultimate task was to rescue Jenna. The strategy was simple. Everyone in the place trusted him, it would be easy to escape the island with her. Or rather, with them. The day before, he had prepared the chopper, it was ready to take off.
The guard opened the door. “I wish you a very good evening, Saïd.” said Mr Lee with a smooth smile. Isham entered the room.

In front of him were standing the three most beautiful girls he had ever seen in his whole life. They were staring at him. After a few seconds Isham was convinced it was the same girl located at different places at the same time. It was certainly strange. Jenna had a lewd, lascive look. Isham was drowning in her eyes. Her eyes, they were instilling something in his mind, but what exactly? Hard to say. Uncertainty. Doubt. What was he doing there? What was the purpose of rescuing these girls? What was the purpose of all this operation? All these years, more than ten years, he had built a network, a castle, and he was about to destroy it, in order to accomplish his mission. What was the purpose of his life? To satisfy a bunch of bureaucrats? He could see in Jenna's eyes that anyway he would never be able to convince her to leave the island. It was too late. It had always been too late. Jenna was walking toward him, and he was beginning to realize it was too late for himself too.

Like one can see the stars slowly aligning along the cinematic ballet of the clouds on a sunny day, Isham was seeing God in Jenna's eyes. Freedom. He would not leave Mr Lee. It was the opposite, it was time to say goodbye farewell to the headquarter. He was seeing how his fake, calculated frienships would instantaneously turn into solid, sincere ones, just because he had decided so. He belonged to the dark world, at present. But after all, it wasn't that different, light worlds and dark worlds mutually feed eachother, just like daylife and nightlife do. If Mr Lee knew about the little storm which was taking place inside Isham's head he probably would have one of those smiles.

And it hit him. Tantra. The mysteries of the universe. The smile. Mr Lee had always known. He had such a knowledge of mankind, his desires, his attitudes, his agendas, his deceptive powers. Mr Lee had understood from the very beginning, he had played with him like with a toy. Mr Lee had everything he wanted. If life was a labyrinth he had managed to find a vortex leading to heaven. Hmmm. And now they were going to carry on the business together, and no one would say a word about it. Or could he openly disclose his true identity? It wasn't really an option, confessing would certainly lead to death. In the end, it was so delightfully funny. Isham was now in a joyful mindset, where nothing matters but to enjoy here and now. He smiled to Jenna.

Inspector Anthony Metcalfe was living a terrible day. First he had problems with his wife and his son, then his patrol car had been damaged during the night, probably by a group of drunk teens, and now he was sitting at his desk with this woman in front of him. And what he had to announce wasn't easy to say. He turned the spoon several times in his coffee.
“Misses Larsson, our investigations indicate that your daughters are still alive, and in good physical health. One of our agents located them. However...”
Ilke Larsson's eyes got slightly wider.
“Misses Larsson, I want you to listen carefully, because the news I'm about to tell you are not good. Not good at all. It was a difficult decision for us to take to have you here today. But we owe you the truth. Are you sure you want to hear it?”
Ilke Larsson approved slowly.
“You have been the victim of an extremely powerful criminal organization, who had prepared the kidnapping with an extreme accuracy. We found out that they had infiltrated dozens of other hospitals, and that they had been looking for triplet girls during at least six months. The day they got your echography you became their target, just because they knew you would have triplets.”

“Your daughters are not in the country anymore. Some of our contacts have traced them on an island located in the Pacific Ocean, near the Australian coast. The whole place is owned and controlled by the local mafia, and, I'm afraid to say, so are your daughters. It will be immensely difficult to recuperate them. And even if we succeed, you wouldn't recognize them. They are seven now. They don't talk a word of English. They have received a very specific education, oriented towards...”
Metcalfe emptied his mug in one shot. He looked at Ilke Larsson in the eyes; she seemed to know what he was going to say.
“I understand, she said. There were tears in her voice.”
“This kind of education is, unfortunately, almost irreversible. If you were to face your daughters tomorrow, you wouldn't be able to communicate together. They wouldn't recognize you either. In fact, they probably don't remember you at all.”
“So, what do you... what do you intend to do?”
“As I said, we have a chance to get your daughters back. All I can promise you is that we're going to send one of our best agents to handle the case. He is very talented and will conduct this investigation with great efficiency. You know Misses Larsson, you have nothing to be ashamed of, nothing to be blamed for. The world is a big jigsaw and things should come back in order.” A pause. “Do you believe in a cosmic order, Misses Larsson?”
“I... I do. Yes, I do.” answered Ilke Larsson.
“If it's the case, please be patient, and don't give up. There is still hope.”

Little Neo, 2009