Not the most restful sleep ever. Risa spent most of the night sobbing, but I don’t think any of us really slept. Ayako has been strangely normal this morning. I understand that she’s being strong for her daughter, but it’s even harder to guess what’s really going on under her stoic expression than usual. I really feel for them. They’ve lost so much already. We should have taken more care. I am going make sure they get out of this alive. There’s no more room for mistakes or oversights. They don’t deserve this and I’ll do what I can to look after them.

AltarThis morning, before the rest of us got out of our futons, Alex actually did manage to find a sword. It’s only a short one and it’s a little blunt, but he found it. It was hidden on a little shelf above the Buddhist altar. From first appearances you couldn’t see that the gap in the wall that held the altar extended upwards, but it did. By reaching up above the altar, he found it in it’s scabbard. It must be a family heirloom from a long time ago, but it’s beautiful. Technically it’s illegal without a license, but I’m led to believe that a lot of people didn’t want to give them up, and some families, especially in rural areas have continued to pass them down. I hope we don’t have to use it, but at the moment it’s impossible to know.

On a similar note, I got another email from the guy who has been staying with a group in Mie Castle. They have been out scavenging a little lately, and it sounds like they are really setting themselves up well. They’re working at setting up some vegetable gardens, and have recently been practicing with some of the weapons that were in the castle’s exhibits. They are actually teaching themselves to throw shuriken (ninja stars). I don’t know how effective they would actually be, as they were actually more commonly used to deliver poison or distract someone, but it is still pretty cool. They seem to be doing alright at the castle. It’s not a huge group, but plenty more than us, and they seem to be very supportive of each other. They have stated venturing out of the castle further to get supplies, as well as materials for their gardens. It’s really good to hear that they are doing so well there. I really wish we had more in the way of good news for them, but things haven’t been so well for us lately.

I hadn’t quite realised it, but by coming to Shingu to see the SDF at the power station, we’re actually coming around the bottom of the peninsula and getting closer to the Wakayama-Mie border. They are at Iga castle, which is actually at the northern end of Mie, but it’s only about a 3 hours drive up to there, as long as things go okay. I’m not sure, but it might be possible to head up to the castle if the SDF can’t take us out of the country.

Anyway, we need to get ready to leave now, so I’ll leave it there.



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