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31 October 2012 @ 02:51 pm
Mental Conflict [#030] [Chapter I]  
Title: Mental Conflict [#030] [Chapter I]
Fandom: Iron Chef (Japan), general
Characters: Masaharu Morimoto (IC Japanese III), random mentions of others
Prompt: 030. There’s a beast upon my shoulder, and a fiend upon my back; feel his burning breath a heaving, smoke oozing from his stack
Word Count: 1104
Rating: PG (language warning)
Summary: Morimoto is stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Author's Notes: This is a little bit longer than expected. I'm officially making this the first of quite a few parts. This is a slightly-fudged account of what happened between then-current Iron Chef Japanese Morimoto and the original Iron Chef Japanese Michiba.

There was always something about my career as an Iron Chef that I just couldn’t explain to anyone. If you saw me on the street, you wouldn’t know that I was having problems. I couldn’t focus on being an Iron Chef. I was struggling in my battles, doing things that weren’t unpredictable. Most of the things I was doing were things that people had seen from me before. It wasn’t as if the judges weren’t happy with my dishes; that was far from the point. Instead, they told me straight up that they could see me having issues. Asako Kishi had to tell me to go home after one taping and just clear my mind from all of the shit that had been going on. The producers agreed with her, and on a plane I went - knowing that I couldn’t have done too much worse than I had done before.

When the plane touched down at LaGuardia, I immediately grabbed my carry-on and ran off of the plane. I was positive that someone had recognized me from Iron Chef, and I didn’t want them to talk to me about my struggles on the show. There were some things I didn’t want to tell them about. There were also some things that I didn’t know about. Like why I was struggling. I was hoping that if anyone had come up to me to talk about the show, I could tell them off with a ‘I don’t fucking know, now just leave me the fuck alone’. It would have been better than trying to explain to them something that I just pulled out of my ass. Of course, I knew that it could have been a better explanation than ‘I don’t fucking know’.

I arrived home and locked the door behind me. My apartment was exactly how I had left it when I flew off to Japan. I keep my stuff as tidy as possible, so coming home to a clean abode was expected. I didn’t live with any pets, so there was thankfully no scent of piss or shit. I did, however, notice that the answering machine was going off. Someone had called me while I was busy hailing a taxi out of the airport. The stupid piece of shit was flashing 01 on me. No doubt about it, folks. I just had to press the button to see who had called me and had no respect.

“Morimoto-san? Sorry about calling you while you were flying home. Please call Fuji TV back when you hear this message. Thanks!”

Oh, you have got to be kidding me. Some douche from the network Iron Chef was on had the decency to at least be polite about it, but she was still a prick about this call. She had to have known that I had to be on a flight and couldn’t make it to the phone until it was too late. Although they didn’t leave a number at the tail end of the message, I knew exactly who I had to call. Someone obviously had something so important to tell me. I deleted the message and picked up the phone. Fuji TV was on my speed dial, so I punched the number on the cordless and hit talk. After a few rings, I could hear someone’s voice on the other end of the line.

“Thank you for calling Fuji TV. If you know your party’s extension, please dial it now. If you do not know your party’s extension, please wait for the next available operator…”

Son of a fucking bitch.

I had to scramble to find myself a piece of paper and a pen. I knew I was going to have to be on hold before I could talk to the operator, and the music I was listening to just wasn’t going to fly with me. It was some classical shit that I really wasn’t in the mood for. Immediately, there was something inside of me that screamed ‘kill the bitch who’s in charge of the on hold music’. But before I could strangle the pen I was holding in my hand, the operator finally spoke on the phone. “Thank you for calling Fuji TV. May I help you?” I was highly surprised that they didn’t screen my phone number before taking my call. How many other Japanese people living in the States calls the network in the first place?

“Hello. This is Iron Chef Morimoto. I know, you probably didn’t recognize me from my voice. Listen, I got a call from someone who works with the show, and I wanted to know if you could trace that call and tell me who it was. And perhaps you could have her call me back?” Oh, that was smart. I felt like a complete fool, having to tell this operator person that I was an Iron Chef. I was surprised to find out that the operator wasn’t screaming that a celebrity had called the network, but I shouldn’t have been. Fuji’s operators were dumb as fuck. But when I heard that they would in fact trace the call, I was elated. It wasn’t until I heard the sound of the lady on the other end - I still don’t think I got her name - that I had a smile on my face for the first time all day.

I explained to her that she had called looking for me as I was probably hailing a cab from LaGuardia in the dead of wintertime, and that I should give my itinerary for the next time I was going to fly back to New York from Japan. She apologized about the situation, then told me that she had some news I should listen to. There was some special thing that was being planned for the show. All I remember hearing was that it was going to involve myself and former Iron Chef Michiba. He was going to come over to the city to help me become more in touch with my inner Iron Chef. If this didn’t work after he left, I would not only be the laughingstock of the show in general, I would be the laughingstock of both Japan and New York City.

Finally, I was relieved. It was probably the first time all day - minus that phone call and the part where I actually talked to the person who called me - that I had a smile on my face. Though if Michiba didn’t know what the hell to do with me, then I don’t think I knew what I was going to do.
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: Alfred Hitchcock Presents