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By Sujata Massey
A younger girl with a foothold in cultures, Rei Shimura has long past anywhere fortune and her unruly passions have led her all through her chaotic twenties. Now, after the streamers for her 30th birthday party were taken down, the Japanese-American antiques broker and part-time sleuth reveals herself with an project to discover and authenticate an historic center jap pitcher that disappeared from Iraq's nationwide museum.
The piece is thought to be within the arms of a filthy rich eastern collector, whose ardour for attractiveness extends to Rei herself. but if a devastating storm hits Tokyo, Rei is trapped with the thing of her investigation—and with a lot even more than the destiny of an historic pitcher at risk.
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After latching the door, I ventured into the kitchen to determine what sort of provisions Takeo had. He’d anticipated to be staying in his condo on my own, so I doubted he’d have stocked sufficient for 2 humans to get via greater than an afternoon. I additionally knew he wasn’t the sort who believed in canned and packaged meals. now not that he used to be somebody who cooked from scratch; Takeo beloved to reserve eating place foodstuff on the final minute, yet I doubted that the neighborhood pizza and ramen retailers will be making deliveries. i discovered raw rice and some different fundamentals within the cabinet, however the top prospect was once the contents of a procuring bag from Matsuya’s basement meals arcade that i discovered sitting at the kitchen desk. It used to be larger than I’d anticipated, and ideal for a vegetarian like myself: marinated tofu, pickled greens, roasted yams, spinach croquettes, and a petite apple tart. I positioned a saucepan of water at the range to boil for the rice I’d make. Now there will be lots for dinner and maybe breakfast tomorrow. I checked the fridge and located cans of power drink and soy sauce, yet not anything extra. No bottled water. This was once a brand new fear, so I went again to the crowded kitchen cupboard and took out the most important box, an outdated miso jar, and commenced filling it on the kitchen sink. “I suggestion you have been placing away the ceramics, now not taking them out,” Takeo stated whilst he joined me a minute later. “I didn’t see any bottled water on your refrigerator, so i assumed I may still take a couple of arrangements. And this was once the biggest box i may locate. ” “And one of many nicest,” Takeo stated. “You selected a two-hundred-year-old Kyushu piece. ” “I didn’t suggest to take advantage of your oldest piece, yet I didn’t see something better. Sorry! ” “Oh, it’s now not the oldest ceramic in the home, however it has loads of sentimental price. It’s been in our relations a number of generations, you know—” “Do you will have me to place it away? ” He shook his head. “Of direction now not. If it has held miso with out coincidence for a number of hundred years, it may carry water for an evening or . the truth is, I merely have a half-case of bottled water in my vehicle, which we’d greater depart for emergencies. And I’ll open sake this night. Or may you wish wine? ” Takeo pried open the garage compartment that used to be equipped into the heart of the kitchen ground. the place so much eastern could have kept root greens, he had squeezed in a wine rack and a wood sake field. “I—it doesn’t actually matter. I’ll simply have a pitcher of—whatever. Did you replenish the bath with fresh water? ” “Yes, certainly. And what do you suggest, it doesn’t topic? It’s in contrast to you to defer to somebody else approximately flavor. ” Takeo’s voice was once teasing. truly, the bathtub had cozy him. “I’d say an analogous was once precise for you, too, aside from your diplomatic response to the purse portray. ” I smiled at him. “The purse painting—damn! ” Takeo stated. “After all of Emi’s reminders, I nonetheless forgot to convey it. i used to be simply brooding about the shutters. ” “I desire Emi’s no longer too disenchanted. ” I didn’t meet his eyes, yet went as a substitute to the range, the place I observed that the flame less than the rice had long gone out.