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Dark Water

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Язык: Английский
Год издания: 2018 год
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      Dark Water
Koji Suzuki

A selection of deliciously spooky short stories from the Japanese master of suspense, the acclaimed author of RING. The film DARK WATER is based on the first story in the collection.Suzuki demonstrates the power of his psychological insight into the mechanics of fear in this highly atmospheric collection of stories unified by the theme of water.Following her divorce, Yoshimi Matsubara lives with her five-year-old daughter Ikuko in a depressing and damp apartment block on reclaimed land in Tokyo Bay. But when a child’s red bag keeps turning up in unexpected places, Yoshino’s sanity seems to be threatened, and she soon begins to fear that her daughter’s life is at risk.Kensuke Suehiro jumps at the chance to visit a restricted island in Tokyo Bay, about which he once heard a rather strange story. But when he arrives, he finds far more than he bargained for.Fisherman Hiroyuki is embittered and unhappy in his marriage. But getting rid of his wife turns out to be anything but easy, especially when his own boat seems to be against him.Family man Sugiyama finds himself trapped in an underwater cave. Can he find a way to communicate with his beloved son one last time?Just four examples from this beautifully crafted collection of stories filled with suspense, tension and drama. A perfect introduction to one of Japan’s top literary stars.

Dark Water

KOJI SUZUKI

PROLOGUE (#)

Whenever her son and his family came down from Tokyo to spend time with her, Kayo would take her little granddaughter Yuko out on early morning walks. They always made their way to Cape Kannon, the easternmost tip of the Miura Peninsula. It was just the right distance for a stroll, the walk around the cape and back to the house measuring less than two miles.

On the spacious observation platform provided for a panoramic view from the cape, Yuko would point far out to sea at whatever had aroused her curiosity, excitedly tug on her grandmother’s hand, and buffet her with a flurry of questions. Kayo answered each of them patiently. Yuko had arrived the day before—she was on summer vacation—and was to stay for another week. The prospect of spending time with her granddaughter was, for Kayo, simply exhilarating.

The view of the furthermost recesses of Tokyo Bay beyond the Tokyo-Yokohama industrial area remained hazy. You rarely got a clear view all the way across, for Tokyo Bay was larger than people thought. In contrast, the mountains of the Boso Peninsula seemed to rise up immediately across the Uraga Waterway, and a high and distinct ridge snaked from Mt Nokogiri to Mt Kano.

Yuko let go of the railing and stretched her arms out as if trying to grasp something. Cape Futtsu, whose long, slender sandbar lay on the opposite side of the bay, appeared to be almost within reach.

The imaginary line that connected Cape Futtsu and Cape Kannon was the threshold of Tokyo Bay, and a stream of cargo vessels proceeded in and out in two neat columns through a corridor of water. Yuko waved to the lines of freighters, which looked like rows of toy boats from where she and her grandmother stood.

The tide flowed rapidly in the shipping lane, and striped patterns sometimes appeared on the water. High tide flooded the bay with water from the open sea, and the low tide emptied the bay. Perhaps for this reason, all the debris in Tokyo Bay was said to wash up at Cape Kannon and Cape Futtsu. If Tokyo Bay was a huge heart, the capes jutting out on each side functioned like valves filtering out waste from the seawater that circulated by the gentle pulse of the tide.

But it was not just the circulation of the sea. The rivers Edo, Ara, Sumida, and Tama all supplied fresh blood to Tokyo Bay like so many thick arteries. The variety of trash washing ashore ranged from old tires, shoes and chil-dren’s toys to the remains of wrecked fishing boats and wooden doorplates bearing addresses from as far away as Hachioji. Some of the things made you wonder how they ever ended up in the sea: bowling pins, wheelchairs, drumsticks, and lingerie…

Yuko’s attention turned to the pieces of driftage bobbing amid the waves.

Driftage can spark the beachcomer’s imagination. The sight of a motorcycle’s side cover can conjure up the image of a biker skidding off a pier into the sea, while a plastic bag stuffed with used syringes has a whiff of crime. Each item of debris has its own tale to tell. Any particularly intriguing thing you may come across on the beach is best left untouched—because it begins to tell its tale to you, as soon as you pick it up. Fine if the story is heartwarming, but if it curdles your blood, things will never be the same.

Especially if you love the sea, you ought to be mindful. You pick up what looks like a rubber glove and find out it’s really a severed hand. That sort of thing could keep you off the beaches forever. The feeling of picking up a hand is probably not too easy to shake off.

Kayo would say such things matter-of-factly to frighten her granddaughter. Every time Yuko begged for a scary story, Kayo responded by weaving a tale around a piece of driftage.

The young girl would probably ask for scary stories on every morning walk in the coming week, but Kayo had plenty of stories to tell and then some. Ever since she’d picked up that thing by the sea, one morning twenty years ago, when she’d just started taking her walks, her imagination had only been growing more active. Now, she could freely draw forth from articles of driftage the bizarre tales that littered the water’s edge.

‘No treasures?’ Yuko wanted to know if nicer things ever washed up, perhaps from some faraway land, instead of just the scary stuff.

All kinds of vessels, from tiny boats to giant ships, busily plied the narrow sea-lanes down there in the bay. Why shouldn’t a chest of gems plop from a ship’s cabin into the water now and then? So reasoned Yuko.

‘I wouldn’t say I’ve never found any,’ Kayo replied ambiguously.

‘May I have it?’ Though Yuko didn’t know exactly what this treasure was, her desire for it was spontaneous.

‘I could give it to you,’ said Kayo, hinting that the offer was conditional.

‘If what?’

‘If you’ll keep me company for the whole week, on my walks.’

‘Of course I will!’

‘Then you shall have your treasure on the morning of the day you go back to Tokyo.’

‘Promise?’

To seal the bargain, they performed a pledge that was popular among children. Perhaps Yuko wouldn’t like the treasure—or even agree it was a treasure. To make sure the girl wouldn’t feel cheated, Kayo needed to keep weaving more tales, so that the setting from which the words had sprung would be vivid in Yuko’s mind.

For Kayo, one thing was certain. In the long life that Yuko had ahead of her, the moment was bound to arrive when the treasure would reveal its worth.

Table of Contents

Cover Page (#ua21f2b8c-1FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Full Title Page (#ua21f2b8c-2FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Prologue (#ua21f2b8c-3FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Floating Water (#ua21f2b8c-5FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Chapter 1 (#)

Solitary Isle (#ua21f2b8c-6FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Chapter 1 (#ua21f2b8c-7FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Chapter 2 (#ua21f2b8c-8FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Chapter 3 (#ua21f2b8c-9FFF-11e9-bcb1-0cc47a5203ba)

Chapter 4 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 5 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 6 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 7 (#litres_trial_promo)

The Hold (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 1 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 2 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 3 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 4 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 5 (#litres_trial_promo)

Dream Cruise (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 1 (#)

Adrift (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 1 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 2 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 3 (#litres_trial_promo)

Watercolors (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 1 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 2 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 3 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter 4 (#litres_trial_promo)
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