By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. These ensure the smooth running of our services. Learn more.

30 December 2006

Short Novel: The Flight to Tokyo, Chapter 1

A story of a B-29 pilot who time-travels from the war-time Tokyo to present-time.

At midnight of March 10, 1945, James Austin was flying over the enemy's capital, Tokyo.

He was in US Air Force's bomber aircraft, B29. The mission was to bomb the city to give the enemy shock and owe. This is important mission to end the war.

Austin was 21 year old pilot, from Conneticut. Over there his parents, Tom, Jane and 10 year-old sister who had been suffering from asthma live. His parents told him his sister would die before he would come back home. That was what the docter told them. So he had to survive in the war. He would be the only child in his family.

Grisping control gear, he was thinkng of his sister, whom he called Katie. She had had problems with her health since she was born. He and his parents had known that she wouldn't live long.
He gave her a present before he joined the army. It was a doll. Very pretty doll like Katie. Katie named the doll "Clara."
He remembered Katie said "Jim, please come back alive. I will live too." Then he promised he would live and when he comes back he would give her another doll as the sisiter for Clara. Katie said she would be excited to meet Clara's sister. Katie told Jim Clara needs something common with her sister. That means Jim had to buy a doll that fits the condition for Clara's sister, which Katie requested. But there is no hope for Katie to meet Clara's sister.

No hope to live. The same words should be delivered to the people beneath him. He and his colleagues in the army called them "Japs." His plane was going to drop firebombs onto their residents. Wooden houses that are easily burned down. Women and children are part of the target. But for the army, they are enemy Japs who do not deserve their lives.
Jime never thought it was cruel thing to do. Jim read the newspaper articles which describes how brutaly Japanese army slaughtered Chinese civilians including women and children by bombing from the air and on the ground. Bombing of Chongqing, and Rape of Nanking. Japanese army have done such terrible things. Japan attacked Pearl Harbour. It was a sneak attack. They killed thousands of American soldiers. 

Now none of the people below him should be considered non-combat personels.

"Open the hatch. It is show-time." The captain said. The plane was in the formation of air-raid with hundreds of planes dropping the bombs. As co-pilot of the plane, Jim pulled the lever to open the hatch. But he found something is strange. The plane is not dropping the bombs.
The hatch is not open. He pushed back the lever and tried pulling it again. But it didn't work.
"What is wrong?" said the captain.
"The hatch is not open. It cannot work, sir." Jim replied.
"Ok. maybe we should lower the altitude, then that should work when the hatch is a little more strained."
"But sir, we shouldn't get away from the formation. And it is dangerous. It would be easier for the enemy to hit us by their ground fires." Jime felt fear.
"Are you saying we should go back home with heavy bombs loaded while others fly back with empty stomach?"
"We are soldiers, we should accomplish this honorable mission. We cannot get away from it."
"All right, Captain." said Jim. He agreed with Captain's words. Totally. The whole crews should risk their lives for the cause. To end the war and bring the victory for the United States of America.  
The plane with 11 crews including co-pilot, Jim, Captain and other members lowered the altitude. Of course they turned off from the formation so that the plane wouldn't be hit by the bombs coming from the above.
They confirmed they were in the right position. What they saw above through the ceiling window was only dark sky. What they saw beneath through the floor window was burning city. A lot of houses and building seemed to be on fire. Jim wondered if they should drop any more bombs onto the ground when the city had got already enough damage.
Jim pulled the gear. He heard the big sound. The sound of hatch opening and bombs dropping.
The whole crew were relieved to hear the sound. They have accomplished the mission.
Then it was the time to go back to where they came from.
But suddenly they heard another big sound, Bang. Then they felt the plane was shaking and smelled the fire. Right after that, they felt the heat. They found their plane was burning.
Jim realized the sound was made by ground fire hit on the plane.
The plane lost the balance. Soon the fire surrounded Jim and Captain.
"Oh, my god." said the Captain. "We got hit."
Jim saw the captain burning beside himself. Then he realized fire was covering on him.
He pressed the bottom as he learned at Air Force Academy. It was what a pilot should do to evacuate the plane. Then he did.
He escaped from the plane. Soon he found himself floating in the air by the parachute.
He was going down slowly. He saw the plane that he was in falling down burning. Of course it was dropping very quickly because it had no parachute with it.
He had no idea of what to do next. Where he would land was the enemy line. The enemy's capitol. After he would land on the ground, he would be caught or shot by the enemy, Japs.

He saw what was beneath his feet. Fires. Very hot he felt. It was getting hotter and hotter.
He thought he would be dead before the enemy would find him.
The worse thing happened. The leashes of the parachute were suddenly cut off.
He fell down with no parachute. But strangely he did not fall not as quickly as the gravity pulls.
He felt something was trying to absorb him. He did not know what it was.
He felt he was going to land with no harm.
Then he landed. He was alive with no injuries. He bent his knees putting his hands on the ground, actually it was wooden floor. He found himself in a house. He then found himself surrounded by the fire. He felt very very hot.
"Oh, no, I am in the burning house. The house of Japs." He shouted in his mind.
He stood up and trying to find a way to get out of the house.
Fire and smoke were the only thngs he could see.
"Tasukete, tasukete." A voice of woman was heard to his ears. He couldn't understand what she was saying but he easily assumed it was a cry for help.
He looked around. He saw a woman lying just a few steps from him. Then he also saw the doorway to get out of the house. He wanted to run away as soon as possible. There is no time to take care of a woman, especially the enemy's woman.
But he realized he had to because he was a gentleman. He held up a woman with his arms. He then ran to the doorway.
He suddenly got out of the house and the fire. The outside was much cooler. He felt winter air.
He got on the road. He then found himself surrounded by the people looking at him very seriously.
"Oh my god, Japs are looking at me." He said to himself in his mind.

He thought that he was going to die. Then he fainted. A woman on his arms was dropped. Jim lied down beside her on the road.

To be continued to Chapter 2.

The story is updated monthly, basically. Sometimes delayed.

This novel is copyright of author of this blog, Masagata.

09 October 2006

The Blog novel "Japanese and Wars"

The below is the novel I am writing in my Japanese blog.

This is translation of Prologue of the novel. I wonder if you might be interested.

Please try.




Pentagon, Washington, USA,   July, 1944


A 44 year-old man named Richard Whiteriver was sitting in front of the old lady aged around 60, named Ruth Benedict. They were alone in the room. He was told that she was one of the most authoritative scholars for cultural anthropology. She started to talk about her mission assigned by the Department of Defense.

“Thank you for coming here from so far away. You may be surprised that a woman like me is part of war-time intelligence mission. I have to do the research on our enemy, oh sorry, it is my country.”

She seemed hesitant to use “our” because she was informed that a man was ex-Japanese national.

“No, ma’am, that is fine. In fact Japan is not my country from the beginning. The fact of the matter is I was not born in Japan. I wasn’t even raised in Japan.”

“Oh, really, I was told you were a journalist for Japan’s mainstream newspaper. Then you became a political advisor for the prime-minister prior to Pearl Harbor Attack. You  have witnessed Nanjing Massacre and then Pearl Harbour Attack. You have quite experiences for my project to complete.”

“Actually, my father was Japanese. But my mother was exiled Polish. I am mixed breed. The place I was born was Shanghai. I grew up there until 15 years old. Then my family moved to Japan later.”

His explanation seemed convincing to Dr. Benedict. He just looked like a pure white American man, but if his hair color is changed from light brown to dark black. He might look like a Japanese man.

“All right, Mr. Whiteriver, oh how should I call you? May I call you “Richard” like American way?”

“Oh, please call me by first name. You can even call me “Richey.” That was what I have been called.”

“Even by Japanese?”

“Yes. That was my nickname.”

“What was your name when you were Japanese before you became American citizen?”

“Shirakawa Ryuichi. The family name “Shirakawa” literally means “white river” in Japanese.”

“Interesting” she said.

Dr. Benedict stood up and walked to the sideboard. Richey and Dr. Benedict looked at two objects placed on the sideboard. One is chrysanthemums arranged on frog in flat vase. This kind of flower arrangement is called “Ikebana” in Japan. The other is traditional Samurai’s sword. Richey asked her why such things are placed on the side board.

“Because they seemed represent the nature of Japanese personality. The beautiful chrysanthemums arranged like this represent gracefulness. The sword represents aggression of military which we are fighting against. Japanese soldiers are so barbaric but easily to surrender themselves. I have collected and read so many things about Japanese culture and politics. But it is not good enough for me to make a complete book of Japanese culture which is to submit to the military intelligence. That is why you come in. I need your help.”

“Why does military assign you the mission like this? It is almost certain that sooner or later Japan would surrender. You do not need to interview with me for knowing Japanese culture. You’ve read so many documents, books, films and so on. The two countries have had almost a century long relationship. You’ve had enough sources.”

Richey talked laughingly.

“The military is thinking about what to do after the war. How to occupy Japan. You can’t just conquer the enemy. They should always be afraid of rebellion. In order to gently control the enemy land, you have to know what they are always thinking. Interviews are important because it is part of field work which I cannot do, as you know I am too old to get in the enemy field.”

Dr. talked as laughingly as Richey did. Then they both smiled each other.

After a moment of silence, they became serious and started talking.

“Well, first of all, tell me more about yourself. Things other than written on reference I was given” said Dr. Benedict.

“What would you like to know?” Richey said.

“How did you become a journalist for the newspaper? What was a lead?”

Her question started to remind Richey of his last month spent at the house in Kobe city, Japan. That was one of most shocking events of his life although he had worse later.

It was March 1918, Kobe City Japan, when Richey was only 18 years old.

A 18 year-old Shirakawa Ryuichi was looking out of the window viewing the whole of Kobe city. His house stood on the hillside of the city. He was also overhearing the record played in his father’s study, which is next to his room. The music was Italian opera, which was his father’s favorite.

Then he heard the sounds someone was knocking on the entrance door. The knocking sound was very loud.  


If you are interested in what will happen next and can read Japanese, please go to this page.  

21:50 Posted in My novel | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: journalism, war, literature