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The Dragon King's Palace: A Novel

By Laura Joh Rowland

On a whim of the shogun’s mom, a procession has left the sweltering warmth of Edo, certain for the cooler weather of Mount Fuji. between her touring partners are Reiko, the gorgeous spouse of Sano Ichir_, the shogun’s so much Honorable Investigator of occasions, occasions, and folks; Reiko’s buddy Midori, 9 months pregnant; and woman Yanagisawa, the deranged spouse of the shogun’s strong second-in-command. None of them wait for the journey. yet their problems have in basic terms began whilst their procession is stopped unexpectedly on a abandoned highway. the total retinue is viciously slaughtered and the 4 girls are certain and brought away, imprisoned through a mysterious kidnapper.

Sano now reveals himself confronted with crucial case of his occupation. The shogun calls for quickly motion, and lower than the specter of dying, Sano is compelled to paintings together with his sour enemies---Chamberlain Yanagisawa and Police Commissioner Hoshina.

The girls are in approaching possibility, and the supply of a ransom notice simply complicates matters---forcing either Sano and Reiko to take determined measures. once more, Laura Joh Rowland’s outstanding mixture of historical past and storytelling attracts us right into a luxurious and treacherous world.

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She heard the lads bustle away, a door bang close, and the clank of iron bars shedding into iron latches. Footsteps retreated down the steps. Tears flooded Reiko’s eyes as she mourned the misplaced chance for get away and cursed her personal weak spot. yet she squandered not more power on remorse; her quandary shifted to her comrades. With palms that felt thick and awkward Reiko tore the hood off her head, the gag from her mouth. She squinted at light, meager gentle that got here from vertical cracks within the shutters of home windows set within the 4 partitions of a sq. room during which she lay.

The wind carried a sour tang of gunpowder. Sano’s center sank simply because he discovered what had occurred. “It turns out that somebody has overwhelmed us here,” Yanagisawa acknowledged. Suspicion and recollection edged the gaze he mounted on Sano. “I haven’t noticeable your leader retainer in recent years. ” “I despatched him and detectives to track the women,” Sano confessed. “He used to be purported to come again to Edo and file their whereabouts. ” “Apparently, he made up our minds to try a rescue instead,” Yanagisawa stated, “and he’s combating a struggle with Dannoshin.

I’m past due for my assembly with Chamberlain Yanagisawa. ” “I’m convinced that the homicide of Anemone is the homicide that the ransom letter refers to, and the cause at the back of the kidnapping,” Sano acknowledged. “And you recommend we examine your idea that the mysterious Black Lotus follower is the Dragon King? ” stated Chamberlain Yanagisawa. “I do. ” hour of darkness had handed whereas Sano rode from Ginza to Edo fort. Now he and Yanagisawa sat within the chamberlain’s property, in an workplace whose partitions have been hung with maps of Japan.

Sano pounded his fist at the ledger as triumph exhilarated him. “This needs to be the homicide at the back of the abduction plot! Anemone is the drowned girl within the poem within the ransom letter. on account that she used to be by no means stumbled on, she’s nonetheless within the lake, below the water—in the palace of the Dragon King. ” “But Hoshina didn’t kill Anemone,” acknowledged Toda. “Her husband did, in keeping with his personal confession. Why could someone call for Hoshina’s execution for Anemone’s drowning? It is senseless. ” “Maybe Hoshina nonetheless performed a task within the murder,” Sano stated.

He wailed, “But we needs to do anything! ” “May I suggest a substitute for the military? ” Chamberlain Yanagisawa acknowledged deferentially. “Police Commissioner Hoshina and i've shaped an elite squad of troops who're expert to address harmful, delicate missions. we will be able to hire them to discover and rescue the ladies. ” The very inspiration repelled Sano. He knew these troops have been assassins whom Yanagisawa hired basically to maintain himself in energy. notwithstanding Sano revered their ability, he didn’t belief them. “I’ll lead the squad,” Hoshina stated, his face alight with eagerness.

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