Episode 10: Nihonbashi’s detective
Kaga and Matsumiya ask Kiyose, who has the motive and also no alibi, to come voluntarily to Nihonbashi Police Precinct as a material witness for the murder of his ex-wife, Mineko. Katsuya has destroyed Kiyose’s alibi, but is also in the process of destroying his own. He has been covering up his actions on 13 April, the day that the murder took place … He said that he last met Mineko six years ago when his son was born, but in truth, he had seen her on 13 April. What is he hiding? And on 14 April, Katsuya had received money from Kiyose. Was that money the reward for his help in Mineko’s murder?
Kaga stops Matsumiya, who has asked Katsuya to come voluntarily to the police station for questioning. “Katsuya-san, you are not the murderer,” Kaga says. Kaga has seen through Katsuya’s many lies and wishes to speak to him.
To begin with, Katsuya had visited Kiyose’s company on 14 April to remove graffiti which had been drawn on his car at an event on 13 April. The truth is, Katsuya is hard-pressed for money. Kaga, who sensed that Katsuya’s credit card had been stopped when they had lunch together, perceived that Katsuya had borrowed money from Kiyose to buy the ‘Diamondman’ figurine.
Katsuya had failed in his investments. However, he could not change his extravagant lifestyle, and had visited Mineko’s house to borrow money. Katsuya finishes his story and is badgered by his son, Shota, to spin the top, but he is still unsuccessful. Kaga passes him the new top that he has brought, and it spins brilliantly. Why did the other top not spin? It had been brought by Katsuya’s father, Kishida, on 15 April.
Kaga hears from Misaki of the handicraft store ‘Hoozukiya’ that she had sold one top on 15 April. ‘Chidoriya’, another toy store in Ningyo-cho, also carries tops but had been hit by a shoplifting incident on 13 April. Is there a connection between these two tops?
Katsuya’s alibi is proven because Kiyose acknowledges that he had lent Katsuya money, and Kiyose is the only person left as a suspect. However, the twisted cord found in the store building is not the murder weapon. Nevertheless, Kojima sees Kiyose as a suspect.
Kaga is obsessed with the cardboard boxes in the cleaning company’s store building. Matsumiya realises what it is, and rushes out to confirm. Kaga, who has been left behind, notices a resignation letter in Kojima’s pocket, but Kojima says that is not his. Whose resignation letter does Kojima have?
‘The Art of the Theatre’, a book of essays on British theatre that Koki is reading, had been a gift by his mother. Koki had told Mineko, who had thought it would be easy for him to study English if it was his favourite theatre book, “I have no interest in English” and did not attempt to read it. In response, she had said, “There is no such thing as a life without meaning.” Now, as Koki reads the book, he thinks of his mother who has been murdered and his father, the suspect in the murder …
Seeing Koki like this, Ami develops a feeling that Kiyose is the murderer after all. However, the police have not been able to obtain conclusive evidence … Kaga pushes her to “cover the case until her pen ink runs out”.
Matsumiya exposes Nagai’s statement that “Kiyose was not inside the store building at 6.30 p.m.” to be a lie. It is because he realised the cardboard boxes were empty from the difference in the sound when Kaga had tapped on them during an earlier visit.
Nagai had entered the store building at 6.15 p.m. to steal industrial-strength cleaning liquid. Noticing that the door was open, Kiyose had come in to take a look. Nagai had fled while Kiyose went out of the building to get ready to wipe up the split cleaning liquid. This gives Kiyose his alibi. Who is the real murderer?
Kaga, who has turned his attention to the top that Kishida had brought, finally finds out the reason. It is because the top and the cord were separate merchandise, and it was a braided cord bought at ‘Hoozukiya’, that Kishida had given to Shota on 15 April. However, the original top had been stolen from ‘Chidoriya’, and the cord that came with it was twisted cord.
After shoplifting the top from ‘Chidoriya’, Kishida had called Mineko from the public phone, and murdered her. However, on his way back, he stopped by at Katsuya’s house. Shota found the top, and Kishida had to buy a new cord because he could not hand over the cord that had been the murder weapon.
Kishida cannot to refute Kaga’s deduction, and admits that he is the real criminal in Mineko’s murder.
It began when Mineko consulted him about Yuri. Could she seek alimony if Kiyose and Yuri had been lovers before the divorce? That is why Mineko had asked about the other company’s account that was in her name. Fearing that his embezzlement of that company’s money would be discovered, Kishida decided to murder her. He says he had gambled that money away but Kaga sees through the lie.
Kaga believes that Uesugi, who is also a father, is the only person who can make Kishida tell the truth. In truth, Kojima had not accepted Uesugi’s resignation letter. Uesugi rejects Kaga, “I have to take responsibility for my son.” However, Uesugi learns that his son, Kazuhiro, had decided to leave the motorcycle gang because he cared for his father. With these words from Kazuhiro, Uesugi tries to make Kishida see what he should do as a “father”.
Kishida had embezzled money from Kiyose’s company because Katsuya had misappropriated company money and came to beg him in tears. He had kept silent to the end in order to protect his son. However, if he had really been concerned about Katsuya, he would have told the truth and not continued to lie. Both Katsuya and himself should pay for their crimes … Kishida confesses the facts of Katsuya’s embezzlement for the sake of his son, and Katsuya is also taken away by the police to atone for his wrongdoings for the sake of Shota.
Kiyose, Yuri, Koki and Ami take on the cleaning of Mineko’s apartment. Ami finds the translated text of the book ‘The Art of the Theatre’ on the bookshelf. Mineko’s dreams as a translator, and her feelings for Kiyose and Koki are written in the afterword. It spoke about her realisation of the importance of family only after the family had broken up. Kiyose also regrets that the murder had happened when he reflects on the family. However, he is saved by this afterword.
And so, Mitsui Mineko’s murder case comes to a close …
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