By Dan Rush
A JINPEI FANFIC FROM THE OAV 94 UNIVERSE. All rights of the creators and characters of Gatchaman are respected herein.
Another mission was over, another Galactor base returned to the abyss that spawned it, and another victory chalked up by Gatchaman.
They came off the God Pheonix at Neptune Base in their civies with Jinpei once again in his usual, boastfull, dancing mood
"Did you guys see me drop those goons! Once again the mighty swallow scores!" He yelped out as he continued to strut and dance across the steel floor of the hanger.
Joe was in his usual gruff mood again as usual. " Do we have to put up with this again? God June, your little brother's ego is blasting through the roof again!"
June chided Joe. "Leave him alone Joe! This is the happiest I've seen him yet. You have to admit Jinpei can bust and scare as many Galactor heads as you or Ken ever could!"
Ken heard that! He turned about and frowned. "There you go again, paying faves again June! I thought I was your fave?" He gave her a wide smile, which Jinpei quickly ruined by jumping Ken and June.
"You? Ha! June thinks I'm the most!" Jinpei said as he continued his wild bluster. "Beat you guys to the showers!!" He screamed as he took off like a shot to the end of the passageway and did a wild baseball slide through the locker room door!
"That little psyco!" Ryu yelled as he to joined in the run. But his slide was less gracefull, in fact, he crashed into the door that Jinpei had locked behind him! The whole group broke out in laughter!
The laughter was broken by the sound of Doctor's Nambu's voice. "Commander Washiro. I need you in my office as soon as possible."
Ken answered back, "Yes Hakasie. Be right there." He turned to the others. "You all go ahead and rest for the night, good work today. Joe, I don't want to hear from June that you tied Jinpei to a chair again like the last time, understand?"
Joe frowned. "Oh sure, steal my fun. I guess I'll resort to tying him up like a pretzel."
Ken smirked and threw a punch into Joe's shoulder. "Wise guy. Get out of here!" Ken bid his team mates fairwell and ventured to Nambu's office. In his mind were the thoughts of another boaring after action report or a debrief from a RISAN officer. How boaring a Commander's life when not engaged in deadly mortal combat with Galactor.
As he entered Nambu's office, Ken came face to face with an officer he'd never seen before. The man was dressed in Federation dress blacks. The uniform was perfectly pressed and ribbon festoned. He was tall, slender, built like a rock. His face was smooth as polished marble and carried an air of cold professionalism.
Nambu stood to present the officer. "Commander Washiro, Captain Jotaro Kirokawa."
The man extended his hand in greeting but maintained his serious, hard look. " A pleaseure to finaly meet you and your team Commander. We both do the same work, though under different situations."
Ken returned the greeting. "Your with the intelligence branch Captain?"
The officer shook his head, "No Sir. I'm with the Inspector General's office."
Ken knoded, "I.G.? Not often we see the Inspector General on our end Captain. To be honest, I don't remember ever getting an official audit from your branch before."
"This is not an audit Commander." The Captain said as he pulled a thick binder from his leather brief case. "This is an investigation by order of the Executive Councel. I'm not sure how you'll react to it's subject."
The Captain turned to Nambu. "Doctor, could you leave us alone?" Nambu rose from his desk and without looking at Ken, left the room.
Kirokawa gestured to a chair. "Will you have a seat sir?"
Ken sat and folded his arms. "So, what's so bad about this investigation that I might not like it?" He asked.
The Captain drew a stapled report from the binder and handed it to Ken. " Several senior members of the councel have been closely watching the operations of your team for a long time now. Many of these reputable officials are raising serious questions about a member of Gatchaman. It is their opinion, that your youngest member should not be doing what he's doing."
Ken was taken back by this. "I see, so why is there an investigation?" Ken asked.
"Based apon my findings, your young team mate may be ordered to leave."
Ken was getting angry. 'I see. Who are these officials? I want their names!"
Kirokawa shook his head. "I can not disclose their identities on the basis of the right to anomity."
Ken jumped up in a rage. "That's a bunch of Bull Captain! I can smell a headhunt from a mile away! Jinpei has the right to face his accusers! This investigation is an outright insult by a bunch of fat politicians who sit in their nice protected chambers while a good people are out there dying for their freedom!"
Kirokawa jumped back in Ken's face. " Reguardless of what you consider an insult Commander, my orders are clear! You will help me in this investigation if you value the boy's continued service! I understand your passion for Leutenant Jinpei's prowise but I must carry out my orders, Is that clear!"
Ken was resigned, he huffed a breath and looked back at Kirokawa. "Perfectly." The Captain returned a salute and walked out of the office leaving Ken still smoldering.
He was formatting a thought, trying to figue out a way to explain to a ten year old boy what was coming, before he pressed the button on his comlink.
"Jinpei? This is Ken. Come up to my office right now."
END OF PART I
THE QUESTION part II
Let it be said that children can throw some violent tempers and that's not enough to even describe Jinpei's anger. It was what you'd call a detonation.
Ken wasn't even done with the first sentence before Jinpei exploded. First he threw the chair he was sitting in at the door in Ken's office, then he slamed his fist on Ken's desk! He actualy dented the table top with his rage!
"IT'S BULLSHIT ANIKIE!!" Jinpei sceamed at the top of his lungs as he tried to grab for another object to hurl.
Ken grabbed him up by the shirt and shook him back to life. "STOP IT JINPEI!! SO HELP ME IF I HEAR YOU SWEAR LIKE THIS AGAIN!...Jinpei reacted in shock. Throwing himself free of the grip, he just stood there shaking like a leaf.
" You grownups! You allways treat me like I'm a little kid, like I need my hands held all the time! Nothing I do ever amounts to anything around here! All I get is "Jinpei this" and "Jinpei that!" and now they wana kick me off the team! It's not fair Anikie!"
Ken moved from behind his desk and grabbed the sobbing boy by his shoulders. " Jumping Jinpei, my most dependable and loial fighter a nothing? Do you realy beleave that? If we didn't want you here Jinpei, you'd have been home a long time ago."
Ken brushed he tears away from Jinpei's face. " No one is going to take you away from us Jinpei, you have my word on that."
The boy was moved. He grabbed Ken in a tight hug. "Thanks Anikie Ken." Ken ran his hand through Jinpei's hair and pushed him away.
"Now, you have to understand something Jinpei. While Captain Kirokawa is here you must be on your best behavior. No fooling around, no insults, no tantrums, and no practical jokes!"
Jinpei gave Ken his usual wildboy smirk. "I can't put itching powder in his laundry?"
Ken snarled back. "If you do that, I'll
realy send you packing!"
"Darn....can I bribe him?" Jinpei said with an inocent look.
Ken pointed towards the door. "Get out of here wiseguy, and behave!" Jinpei sauntered out, his small ego properly if not woefully restored.
"Oh God." Ken shook his head. "I've released a little monster." He sat down knowing that this mission was not going to be easy.
The next morning, Captain Kirokawa sat in his temporary office awaiting the first interview. It was a wise move to call the one person first who knew Jinpei better than most. June entered he room and took a seat before the desk, watching the captain type into his destop computer.
Placing a recorder before June, he pushed the laptop to one side and adjusted himself in his chair. "Leutenant Commander I trust you know why your here?"
" Yes, and you may call me June Captain. I'll also make it aware that..."
He stopped her. "You intend to file a formal protest, yes I'm aware of that. But please remember that I am conducting this investigation, not ordering it. Remember that in your grievence." He pressed the recorder button.
Q. How long have you known Jinpei? A. Since he was four. I adopted him
when doctor Nambu came for me.
Q. As one who has seen him in action the most,
how do you rate his fighting skills? A. Superior. He has better Co-ordination than
others his age. He's no different than any
of us on the team.
Q. What about the occasions where he seems
to "grandstand"? There's over twenty odd
instances in the mission logs where he
went in alone, didn't call for backup, and
disobeyed orders. Isn't that a sign of
wreakless disreguard? Maybe a lack of
maturity? A. If you will note Captain, not once in any
log were there violations of "dirrect orders"
There are afterall two types of orders we
use, warnings and dirrections. Most of
the one's Jinpei disreguarded were of
warnings which all of us have violated.
As for not reporting in, many of those
incidents can be justified. There were very
rare occasions where Jinpei didn't report
in and most were ones he easily handled
Q. but there are written repremands by your
commander as to Jinpei's attitude, his
smart mouth, his lack of patience. A. Those repremands were never negitive
Captain. Commander Washiro understands
Jinpei's unique possition on the team. He
get's alot of hassle about his size and age
so you can expect him to blast off whenever
he's overlooked or questioned about his
age. And all those councel reports end in
possitive notes, not negitive remarks.
Q. What's he like at home? Is he the same
there as he is at work.
A. Far from it. When he's away from work,
he's more free wheeling and harder to
control, just as any 10 year old can be.
But he is responsible. He practicly runs
my lounge at the Bayside Hotel. When
he's here at work, on a mission, he's
Q. How's his schooling?
A. He's a strait A student, except for algebra.
he hates it.
Kirokawa smiled. "He hates it? I wanted to
torch my classroom." Both of them laughed
as the tape clicked off. Kirokawa stood up
and thanked June for her statements.
As June walked out of the door, she
caught Jinpei in the hall trying to walk
away. She tapped him in the head and
walked with him to the Recreation room.
"Well sis?" Jinpei asked. "How did it
go? what did he say?" The barrage was
getting on June's nerves.
"Jinpei?" She warned. "You shouldn't
be spying on things like this! You know
better!" She said as his shoulders fell
with an air of disapointment.
"I just wana know what's going on!"
He said as he took a seat. "This stuff
sucks!" He pouted with his hands on his
June just laughed. 'My little brother
the worry wart. Jinpei, have a little faith
and patience for once?" She said as she
tossed a coke in his hands.
She looked at his hair. "I think you
need a haircut on that mop of yours."
"Touch it and you'll die." He grumbled
as he turned to place his head on the
END OF PART II
The Question part III
Ryu knocked on the door next. As the Captain watched fom his desk, the first man to enter the room was a wheelchair bound Sergent from the UN's Special Forces recon unit.
Kirokawa leaned forwards, "Sergent? your not requested by this investigation?"
The man stopped. "I beg to differ Sir. The Leutenant Commander informed me about this investigation reguarding a certain individual who saved the lives of myself and my men."
Kirokawa thought for a moment, then placed his tape recorder infront of him. "Go ahead Sergent."
The Sergent had to think for a few minutes before he could speek. "It was August 17th of last year. Myself and a team of Longe Range Recon were scouting enemy possitions on Planet Rega when we were ambushed.
Our skipper was killed, every man jack wounded, no back up, no escape. We were dead for sure. I grabbed the radio we had and just began to flip channels, calling for help. Then it came, that wonderfull sound of a jet driven Godsend.
The kid was flying this wild looking tank. He straffed those goons with grenades, made them run like hell! Well he can't land near us because of all the fire we were taking, so he lands 60 yards behind us.
I watched that kid make trip after trip across open ground, beating goons up like they were rag dolls. He pulls ten grown men, under fire, to that tank.
I heard later that he got chewed out for disobeying orders, but that kid saved our lives."
Kirokawa knoded to the Sergent. "Thank you Sergent. I will be sure to add that to my report. You have been most helpfull."
Ryu escorted the man out, then returned to his seat before the desk.
" Excellent move Leutenant Commander. You don't know what good you just did by that."
Ryu knoded in thanks. "It's for the good of the boy sir. He's a dam good kid and worth alot to me."
Kirokawa turned his player on.
Q. One question though sir. The sergent said
something about disobeying orders?
Tell me what that means? A. It was a bad situation Captain. Those men
were bait to lure us from our primary mission.
When we reached the site, the Galactot let
us have it with everything they could throw.
We couldn't hover to pick the men up. All
the while, on the radio, you can hear them
screaming and dying.
Jinpei had enough. He took his tank
down there against orders, even after
Commander Washiro told him twice.
That tank was shot to heck when he
came back and Ken chewed him up,
made him cry. However, when those
men began to crawl out of that tank,
the Commander didn't say another
Q. But Jinpei did disobey a lawfull order?
A. Yes sir, and he was repremanded for
it, untill we found out how many lives
he saved. The worst of the repremand
was because Jinpei did not alert the
Commander to his intentions, not
because he took a dangerous risk.
Q. Sounds like a disopline problem to me.
A. No sir. Jinpei is very focused when he
sets out to do something. It's not easy
to swey him from his set course.
Especialy when lives are in danger.
Jinpei will take shots, grab live
explosives, even intercept knives
to save someone else. That's his
Q. How would the team fare without him?
A. It won't....I'll resign and go home. Tell
that to the councel.
(Tape clicks off) "Thankyou Leutenant
Commander Ryu. You may go."
Ryu exits the room and, as expected, Jinpei is once again trying to fein ignorance near the door. Ryu picks him up and swings him across his bulky shoulders.
"Comeon Ryu!! Why can't I listen!" Jinpei protest loudly.
"There's enough trouble around here without you causing more." Ryu says as he playfully tweeks Jinpei's nose.
"Comeon kid, let's go find a mall and
hang out for a while!"
Jinpei kicks in frustration but resigns
himself to being carried around...for now.
END OF PART III
The Question Part IV
Joe's turn came next. He entered the room and looked right at Kirokawa with a deep, very threatening scowl. Kirokawa wasn't usualy moved by such attempts at intimidation, but the Commander wasn't so. There was real hate for him in those eyes.
Even before he had a chance to turn his recorder on, Joe seized Kirokawa's hand. "Tell me first Captain." Joe said with obvious anger. "Who's side are you on?"
The captain looked into Joe's eyes. "No ones. I'm gathering as much as I can for this investigation. If it helps the boy, so be it. If not, so be it also. I'm not playing sides here Commander, so don't try to persuade me with your bluster."
Joe let the hand fall and sat strait as a ram rod in his seat. "Go ahead."
Q. Is it true that you and Jinpei don't get along?
There are reports here that you both have
been in a few fights together. You even
punched him in the face when he was
eight years old. A. It's not true that we don't get along. I tease
him alot, it was heavier when he was first
starting out. The punching incident occured
after a mission when I dogged him out for
making some near costly mistakes. He's
very sensitive about his age and I hit a
good nerve. He landed a good one in
my face so I returned it. And do you know
what happened next?
Q. He punched back.
A. No, he decked me! with a good kick to
the groin. (Laughter)
Q. What about the time you and Commander
Washiro set him up as a traitor? He was
taken in by Glactor. You wern't afraid to
send a 9 year old boy into such danger?
A. Tell me, have you ever heard the story
of Wataru Kosa?
(The following is a true life story in Japan)
A. In Japan, there was a boy named Wataru.
His father was a ninja master who was
killed by the local lord.
Wataru befriended the lord's son for two
years. One night, he sneeks around the
castle, climbs over the false cealing of
the lord's bedroom, and kills him with
poison drops from a string.
Wataru was only 7 years old.
Q. Is there a meaning here?
A. Jinpei is by no means less dangerous.
his age alone gives him great tactical
advantage. Galactor sees him like the
Lord saw Wataru, harmless, weak, and
dumb. Jinpei is no harmless kid and he's
alot smarter than people think.
Q. So you have no reservations about
sending him into a fight?
A. Oh, he's still got alot of growing up
to do, but he won't be able to do it
outside Gatchaman. You tell your
friends in the councel from me....
take him....if you can.
"click" Thankyou Commander. You may
leave. Unfortunatly, I have to strike those
last comments from the record."
"Hmf." Joe snorted as he left. "Jinpei?"
he said as he caught the boy hiding from
him in the doorway down the hall.
"Anikie!" He protested once more as
Joe carried him down the passage to the
hangerbay and tossed him in the backseat
of the Cobra. "This isn't fair!" The boy said
as Joe leaned against the locked door.
"To bad kid. Ken's the last one and
I don't think you'll escape again to hear
what he's going to say. In fact, I dare you!"
END OF PART IV
The Question part V
"Your my last interview Commander Washiro." Kirokawa said as he guided Ken to his seat and sat behind the desk. " Before we start, I must comment about your team sir. They are very loial, especialy to the boy. I hope what's been said here will be enough. I wish to add, that I am supportive of Leutenant Jinpei as well."
Ken gave the Captain a slight bow. " Your support is welcome Captain. May we start?" The recorder came on once again.
Q. Commander, Questions have been raised about the effects of combat on Jinpei, his mental condition under such brutal conditions must affect him. A. I can't lie that they don't. All of us have been touched and hurt by this war in one way or another Captin. But Jinpei has a rare way of dealing with it. He can attach and detach himself very quickly. He could be raiding a base one minute to shooting basketballs and playing baseball the next. It's a rare tallent most of us tend to lack.
Q. How do you know he's not holding it in or
hiding any problems? A. He can't hide it and he knows it well. June
tells me everything. So he releases it in
ways that work for him.
Q. Has he ever been hard to control? A. No parent or close guardian will ever have
total control over a child, certainly not one
like Jinpei. My secret is to steer him when
he drifts off course. Provide the best role
model he can follow behind. So far it's
kept him out of real serious harm while
building him up as a man. I'm proud of
the way he's turning out.
A. Your not to happy with the thought he
may leave are you?
Q. I and my team are totaly against it. If
Jinpei leaves, it will cause nothing but
grief. It'll destroy him. This is his home
and his family and if you try to take
him from it, he will fight. He's proud
to be here and that's the way it should
"That's it Commander, thankyou
for all your help." The Captain said as he
shook Ken's hand. A sudden tap on the
office door, however, caused him to
Slowly, he moved to the door and
whipped it open! There stood Jinpei with
Joe's keys dangling from a finger.
Ken looked at him. "What did you
you Jinpei?" he asked.
The boy gave a wide toothy smirk,
"Oh nothing much. Just locked Anikei
Joe in the trunk of the Cobra."
The captin broke out in a tearfull
laughter as Ken took the keys from
Kirokawa walked over to shake
Jinpei's hand. "So your the great swallow?
Tell me, can you play basketball like
Jinpei took a tough guy's stance.
"You wana find out? I'll kick your ass
for twenty bucks!"
Ken's eyes shot wide. "Jinpei!
Watch your mouth!" He said with a
frown. He paused to look at the
Captain, then back at Jinpei.
" Forget it. You have my orders
Jinpei, kick his ass!"
Kirokawa's eyes dropped! He
thought he was being set up for the
END OF PART V
The Question Part VI
It was two hours later, and the Captain had just lost another basket to his small but swift opponant. "Let's see!" Jinpei blustered. "67 to zip, I told you I'd kick your ass!"
The Captain was indeed impressed by Jinpei's ability to strut and bluster. Indeed the kid had energy and mouth to spare.
"Leutenant, you are something else." Kirokawa said as he took a seat on the bleechers and watch Jinpei fly through a series of dribbles.
" Look. Just call me Jinpei? I hate that military stuff. Besides, you didn' t bring your tape recorder did you?"
The Captain replied, "no. but I want to talk to you anyway. Let you give your side of the story without feeling threatened."
Jinpei dropped the ball and sat next to Kirokawa. " First, you tell me. Why is it I always get harped on by grownups about my age? Why can't they see what I do, not what I look like?"
The Captain shrugged. " It's an old story Jinpei. Adults just view children with an overly protective eye. I think any parent would have a heart attack if they saw their kids doing what your doing now."
Jinpei frowned. "I don't see these same adults giving much of a dam for street kids. More kids are dying out in the streets now than Galactor's own goons. But they don't think those kids are worth as much as one do they? If they did, they'd lay off me and let me do what I have to do and go do what they should be doing."
"For a ten year old, your very smart Jinpei to say nothing of level headed." The captain rose up from the bench. "I'll do what I can to keep them from taking you away from your friends Leutenant, you have my word."
Jinpei mused over the Leutenant rank again as he shook Kirokawa's hand. "Thanks, but you still owe me 20 bucks for losing!"
Kirokawa smiled and dropped a twenty in the boys flinching hand.
TWO WEEKS LATER
Jinpei had been bouncing off the walls ever since Captain Kirokawa had left. Since there was no set time for the councel to meet, it made waiting all the more worse for everyone. June couldn't keep the boy quit for one second before he was up bothering everyone with questions or bouncing basketballs off his room walls back home in frustration.
They were all int he recreation room when Nambu arrived with Kirokawa. June had to fight to keep Jinpei from running him over. "Well, well, well?" he begged. "What did they say?"
Nambu called them all forwards as the Captain pulled the results out of his case. "Leutenant Jinpei. It is the councels expressed
decission that you be ready to leave in two days."
END OF part VI
The Question Part VII
There was a near explosion in the room untill Kirokawa smiled and restored order. "Jinpei. You will report in two days to the acadamy of advanced tactical studies before assuming your new rank as Leutenant Commander, with all rights and privilages accorded to sed rank. You will be retained on active duty with Gatchaman untill such time as deamed fit to end obligated service."
The room exploded, in cheers. But Jinpei had gone into a brief shock. He woke out of it and asked "Well, does that mean I can stay?"
Ken and June tossed him about. "I don't think we'd like it any other way Jinpei!"
The boy wringed his hands. "Well I think a party's in order. Now, if someone would like to play me in basketball and lose with a donation, I'll buy the............"
Everyone walked out.
They left him alone to himself.
Jinpei was once again his merry self as he strutted and danced his way out the door.