Focusing on his work has been a daily struggle for Kuroda ever since he was stripped of a certain club membership, and possibly for the first time in his career, he is losing touch with several important deliverables. Absentmindedly, he simply nods and replies that he will delegate the matter to a senior project manager from the Ministry of Finance.
As soon as Mitsuda has left the office to fetch the daily newspapers and the adverse media screening reports, Kuroda is distracted again. He is pondering how best to achieve his sweet revenge over Shoko. It is a fundamental obstacle that he knows neither her exact address, nor even which neighborhood she lives in. He has spent quite a few of his office hours trawling through all available data on Mori Tower in the Central Register of Buildings and Dwellings to which he has privileged access via the Cabinet Office intranet. Interestingly, private residential tenancies are only available on a single floor in that enormous building, the remaining floors being reserved for commercial leases such as office and retail space. Having deduced that she lives on the 33rd floor does not solve the problem, however. He does not know her surname, and it is a distinct possibility that she is not even registered as the tenant. Yakuza members are probably not prone to advertising their whereabouts in public records. Hmm. Luckily, he knows someone who is just as eager to settle the score with Shoko as he is himself. Seeing her climb the Hashimoto family ladder, he did a thorough background check on her a while ago. He learned that there are certain other people whose toes she has clearly stepped on in the past. People who would gladly assign their thugs to a time-consuming stakeout at the foot of Mori Tower, making them patiently wait until their surveillance operation pays off. Digging for dirt on potential opponents is always wise, as is hedging your bets.

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