Read by Kevin Shen
I find myself in someplace scary: a living room. It’s nothing like the sparse-save-for-spiderwebs tatami mat cottages I’ve squatted in my whole life — it’s nicer, but nowhere as grand as the Emperor’s Palace I once frequented … no longer do.
I feel my kimono on me; gentle, like a shy woman’s embrace … I miss my iron armour. I swerve my right hand to my left side: I still have my sword. I draw it, scan the opaque room for danger: an ugly sofa with a stain that actually adds character, a mantel with smiling foreign faces, two slices of pizza, a can of soda and four fallen bottles of beer float in their own puddle on a mahogany coffee table, and beyond that, against the wall, boxes with flickering lights, and above those … a portrait of … me … on the TV.