Coming May 25th to TBM Plaza!
The Legendary Japanese Band:
Wolf Noise (狼の騒音)
Lead Guitar/Vocals: Kensuke Takahashi
Bass Guitar/Backup Vocals: Toshiki Handa
Drums: Hirofumi Tagawa
For tickets, contact TicketMinstrel before they’re sold out!
—A flyer in English announcing an upcoming band tour visit in the Philippines.
Kato’s scalped itched and his stomach flipped again. He shared a surprised look with Xan, then they both looked back to the arguing boys.
“That fucking pervert?” Takahashi yelled.
“Watch your mouth you little shit!” Handa yelled as he moved aggressively close to Takahashi.
“Toshiki!” Xan exclaimed as he slammed his hand on the table with a loud bang. He then stood up.
Handa didn’t move but continued to glare down at Takahashi, who was busy returning the glare. Kato didn’t know what to do so he sat silently.
“What the fuck is your problem?” Takahashi asked. Then a look of realization came over his face and a smirk. “Don’t tell me Father Jacobs was busy fucking you, too?”
Quick as lightning, Handa swung at Takahashi, but he must have been anticipating it, as he was faster and ducked the jab. He put his shoulder into Handa’s midsection and shoved him back with a tackle as they both fell to the floor, knocking a table over and sending chairs and games flying.
Kato shot up out of his chair, but Xan was quicker. Xan bolted over to the boys and yelled “Stop!” He reached down and started to pull the struggling Takahashi off Handa, who had him in a bear hug, trying to squeeze the life out of Takahashi.
“Toshiki! Let him go!” Xan yelled.
“Fuck!” Handa sounded wounded but he let go as Xan pulled off the squirming Takahashi.
“Ken, just stop! All of you just stop!” Kato yelled out.
Xan was sitting on the floor with a panting Takahashi. Handa, also breathing hard, sat up, glaring at both Takahashi and Xan.
“Toshiki! Would you just tell us what the hell happened?” Xan asked.
“He fucking took away Father Jacobs from me and then got him fucking fired!” Handa exclaimed.
“I didn’t fucking take him away from you!” Takahashi yelled back.
“Yes, you did! He said you had a better voice, that you play guitar better, and he wanted to focus on training you. He liked me first! He was the only one who ever gave a damn about me!”
Handa got up in a huff. This caused Xan and Takahashi to stand up too. He began to tick off his fingers, saying, “He stopped taking me places, stopped playing guitar with me, stopped spending time with me.” He balled his fists and said, “He told me he gave that fucking guitar to you. My fucking guitar! He gave it to me first. That was mine.”
Takahashi let out an angry scoff. “I sold that fucking guitar when I was living on the street.”
“What?” Handa turned a shade darker but Xan quickly stepped between them with his hands up. “Don’t,” he said.
Kato went over to Takahashi and stood next to him. “Ken,” he said as he grabbed Takahashi’s arm.
“Let me get this straight,” Takahashi said. “That pervy old man was busy fucking around with me and you’re jealous?”
“Fuck you,” Handa said.
“He was just using me, dumbass!” Takahashi snapped.
“Alright, enough! Stop!” Xan said. When he was sure both boys were listening, he said, “The man used both of you. Neither of you are to blame for this.”
“But, he—” Handa pointed at Takahashi.
“Toshiki, stop it,” Xan said, interrupting him. “It’s not his fault. And it’s not your fault. You two are enemies because what that guy did,” Xan said.
Handa glared at Xan, then at Takahashi. “I’m fucking out of here,” Handa said, shrugging off Xan’s hand as he turned to the door to leave. Kato hadn’t noticed it before, but there was an audience of boys just outside the door. “Fucking move!” Handa bellowed as he exited the door, causing boys to scurry away.
Xan sighed heavily, then followed Handa out the door.
Takahashi watched Xan leave. Then he asked himself aloud, “If he fucking knew what that pervert was doing to me, why didn’t he stop it?” His voice laced with hatred and bitterness.
Kato leaned his head against Takahashi’s shoulder.
With a deep breath, Takahashi asked, “You broken again?”
“Yes,” Kato said.
Takahashi let out a snort. “Now I’m sorry I came to play cards.”
Kato looked up. “What were you going to do if you hadn’t come?”
Takahashi smiled a little. “I was working on some music.” Then he became serious and said, “If you have any problems with Handa-san, you can flee and tell the old lady at the desk.”
Kato nodded in assent. “I’m just glad she’s not on duty yet. All that noise and you might have gotten in trouble again.”
Takahashi wrapped his arm around Kato and gave a small hug. “It’s almost time for me to get back to my wing. I’ll see you tomorrow.”
Kato reluctantly let go as Takahashi pulled away, sad to see him go. Kato left the game room and noticed the hallway was empty. As he went back to his room, he saw that the door was closed. Approaching the door, he could hear some loud arguing inside.
“I just want to fucking kill that little bastard!” Handa screamed.
“Yeah? Then what? Spend the rest of your life in jail?” Xan yelled back.
“I don’t give a fuck anymore!” Handa bellowed.
After a minute of silence, the door opened and Xan walked out. He glanced at Kato, then turned back to face the room. “We will talk about this more tomorrow night when we swap,” he said with conviction.
“Don’t fucking bother. Just leave me alone,” Handa said. Kato’s heart suddenly sank. Tomorrow night they were supposed to swap for his one-month anniversary with Takahashi.
Xan frowned. “Stop pouting. And we are swapping, whether you want it or not.” Handa didn’t say anything further and Xan glanced back at Kato with a slight nod then walked away.
Kato felt a bit sick to his stomach at the thought of spending the rest of the evening with this crazy, wounded wolf, but he had no other option. He peeked into the room and saw Handa lying on his bed, facing the wall. He entered, and quietly shut the door. Then he grabbed his whaling book, sat in the furthest chair from Handa, and started to read the same paragraph over and over.
After a few minutes, he heard a sniffle. He thought he imagined it. It seemed to come from Handa. A few seconds later, he heard another. Fuck me, is he crying? Kato wondered. He knew that he had never been all that great at consoling people. He instead felt a tiny bit of panic and wanted to escape. So, he got up and grabbed some stuff and left the room quietly to go brush his teeth and clean up for bed. He figured the best he could do was leave Handa to weep in peace.
“Hey, Kato-san,” said Higashihara, who was at the sink.
“Oh, hiya,” Kato replied with a smile. He went over to use the one next to Higashihara. It appeared that they were the only two currently in the bathroom.
“Just so you know, the whole damn wing pretty much heard everything that went on in the game room.”
Kato felt sick again. Now everyone knows what that pervert did to Takahashi, he concluded. He said nothing as he started brushing his teeth. Higashihara did likewise. They brushed in silence, but after he was done, Kato asked, “Did you know Father Jacobs?”
Higashihara looked at Kato in the mirror. “Yeah,” he said, no emotion showing on his face.
Kato broke eye contact and looked in his own mirror to feign interest in a stray lock of hair. “What was he like?”
“Hmm.” Higashihara was silent or a few moments. “Well, charismatic, but too touchy-feely for my tastes. Good at music and funny.”
Kato was quiet for a few moments, then asked, “Did he—”
“No,” Higashihara interrupted. “I was never targeted by him.”
“Oh,” Kato replied.
“I heard rumors that he was doing stuff with some students, but it was all jokes. Nobody that I know of actually said he was for real.”
Kato grabbed his stuff, almost sorry to have asked and starting this disturbing conversation. As he was about to leave, Higashihara interrupted him. “Hey, I’m sorry to hear about what happened to Takahashi-san.”
“Yeah,” Kato replied. He hoped that since people now know what happened, it might be a positive thing and people would lay off of Takahashi. Even more so, he hoped that it wouldn’t make things worse for his wolf.
When he entered the room. Handa was still lying on the bed, facing the wall. Kato felt like he was walking on eggshells. He tried to be super quiet so as not to disturb the wild wolf. He grabbed his book and climbed up on his bunk.
He spent a while staring at the page and thinking about all that went on this evening before he ended up falling asleep, being glad that not another word was shared between the two that night.
Wolf Noise: 狼の騒音, Ōkami no Sōon, (oh-kah-mee noh soh-ohn) – A completely fictitious Japanese band, not representative of any actual band. 騒音 literally means a loud and disturbing noise or a racket.