This Is What Progress Looks Like (Kunzite)

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This Is What Progress Looks Like (Kunzite)
Date of Cutscene: 14 May 2017
Location: Somewhere in Tokyo
Synopsis: Kazuo and Hiroshi Takeba are going to visit Akemi Takeba. Since she's been dead for twenty-some years, the trip is morbid as well as awkward.
Cast of Characters: Kunzite, Hiroshi Takeba

"Why did you agree to come?"

The silence following the question held court for a moment; Kazuo debated not answering it at all. But Endymion wanted him at least to make an effort at dealing with the man. "Because I don't remember where the family grave is."

Hiroshi gave him a skeptical sidelong glance. "You've known where it is since you were four."

"I traded in the seizures for memory problems. Stable now, but I lost some specifics." Kazuo faced ahead, pretending to disregard the look. "Chiba thinks I should try to get them back. He has an irritating habit of being right."

"Mn." Hiroshi walked for perhaps half a block in silence. "He claimed something like that, yes. Ridiculous story. The young man has enough on his side, I don't know why he chooses to invoke these bizarre fantasies as justifications."

Kazuo did not pick that one up; he let his expression go casually immobile, the stone mask that had always served him in these conversations. That one he remembered from the gut, without a need for the specifics Beryl had tampered with.

The silence lasted a block and a half this time.

Hiroshi broke first. "You should find a girl, you know. Even if you're not worried about yourself, she should have someone to take care of her after you."

The urge to turn and shove the man face-first into the nearest wall rose; Kazuo regarded it and let it pass. So far as he knew, he'd managed never to offer his father violence. He intended to keep to that, whether or not he ever remembered the reason why. "The only girl I can presently conceive of 'finding' in that regard is in high school." He thought. He hoped. "I have no intent of pursuing that until at the very least she reaches a reasonable age. Nor is there any guarantee that either of us will retain any interest in the other, or necessarily be able to sustain a relationship even if we both want to. I suggest you put that line of thought on hold for at least five years."

"In five years," Hiroshi said, "you'll be past thirty."

"I'm aware."

"Your mother died when I was thirty-one." Hiroshi's turn to look straight forward, this time, not looking aside at Kazuo at all. "You shouldn't wait too long."

Kazuo turned that one over in silence the rest of the way to the cemetery. This time, Hiroshi said nothing.

For all Kazuo's fractured memory could tell him, that quiet might have been the most positive interaction they'd had in twenty years.