SA: The Privileged; MISSING HEARTS
Kurutan: Ah! Crap! It's you. Don't scare me like that.
Motoko: You called me. Pretty unusual for this time of day.
Kurutan: Don't give me that. You haven't even bothered to show up when I've invited you over, lately.
Motoko: So, what's up?
Kurutan: Um, well, there's something weird going on. This little girl underwent heart transplant surgery last month. Her parents were overjoyed that she was lucky enough to find a compatible heart. And they apparently asked who the donor was in order to offer their personal thanks to them.
Motoko: So far, it sounds like one big happy ending.
Kurutan: Hm, well, the organ was donated by a boy who coincidentally was in my care. A decision was made to replace portions of his body with prosthetics as part of his treatment. That would've put a huge strain on his heart, so it was replaced with an artificial one. But his parents claime that they don't recall offering to donate their son's organ.
Motoko: Could be... the boy's parents are pair of habitual liars, or it was an administrative flub, postoperative delirium confuses many.
Kurutan: I know. But the kid's mother, as I'd heard, went to the police about this, but the detective who was assigned to the case was hospitalized after some mishap, and now the investigation's been put on hold. I don't know if this sort of thing is in your jurisdiction, but it's got me worried. You see, she needed a transplant after a sudden accident, so her folks were ready for a prosthetic body unless an organ was found. But the strain she'd suffer from body replacement as she ages would be terrible, plus with all the future maintenance and the cost of prosthetics, I think she was really fortunate to find a heart donor. ......Huh?
Motoko: How old...is she?
Kurutan: Well, it seems this little girl just turned six.
Motoko: All right, Chief. That's the whole story. It's not much to go on. So, what do you want us to do? Head back to the office?
Aramaki: No. Head to Meditech. It's the place that handled the transplant organs for the girl. When Ishikawa and Borma are finished investigating the money trail, I'll have 'em join you.
Motoko: Is something about this bothering you?
Aramaki: Are you familiar with those mass kidnappings that have been occurring lately in this country, that are connected to overseas Mafias?
Motoko: Where they sell their victims' cyberbrain devices and organs on the black market?
Aramaki: The odds are that this case could have ties with domestic black market routes as well. Verification is what I need.
Togusa: Let's roll.
Secretary: Hello. We've been expecting a visit from. Iwasaki, the Chief Executive Officer of Meditech, welcomes you.
Togusa: Thank you. I'm Togusa from Section 9.
Secretary: No. This is Mr. Iwasaki, sir. I'm his secretary android.
Iwasaki: Hehehe, don't you fret none, partner. Happens all the time. Folks just can't seem to wrap their heads 'round these Jameson-types, let me tell you. My wife 'n kids are mad as wet hens at me, sayin' my taste in prosthetics ain't normal. Shucks. It's just one of them manly quirks every fella's got, dang it. Heheheh!... Uh.. sorry. Anyway, y'all need some you want me to verify, right? Hey!
Secretary: Yes, sir.
Togusa: This is it.
Iwasaki: Okey-doke. Let's take a gander. Yep, sure as shooting, this here is a statement of delivery from us, all right. Funny, though, 'cos we don't coordinate shipping and handling here. it's kinda surprising to see paperwork like this. Anyhoo, if y'all want to poke around feel free. Mi casa es su casa.
Motoko: It's your company that has the ads slogan "Give us your spare genes, and we'll grow you some spare organs," right?
Iwasaki: You're darn tootin', little lady. We splice our customers' genes into pigs and grow whatever organs they want. We harvest the organs and deliver them in case there's ever an emergency.
Motoko: Any money in organs?
Iwasaki: Money? Put it plainly, missy, well, it's a cash cow! Hey, you oughta deposit some genes and raise a hog for yourself. I'll tell you what, act now, and I'll cut you a humdinger of a deal on our five-organ Standard Plan! What do you say?
Motoko: Togusa is the one who's flesh and blood.
Togusa: Er, I'm good.
Iwasaki: Heck of a deal, son. See, if the organs aren't used in the hog's lifetime, you can sell them through a distributing agency that lines up buyers who want 'em. Say, If you folks are the investing type, I'd be much obliged if y'all put your money into the Meditech. Hey, even cyborg ladies can spare a little cash to invest, isn't that right, darling.
Iwasaki: Y'all just help yourselves now, you hear?
Secretary: Should you have any needs, let me know.
Togusa: Thank you. Time marches on, but there'll always be "folksy" guys, I guess.
Motoko: What? You mean like that carny baker? What kind of cheap knock-off is that? Forcing that lame Texan accent. It can't be real. It's probably just a put-on.
Togusa: Hard to believe the one running the largest artificial organ outfit in the world is a cyborg using a Jameson-type body. Considering what a gung-ho company guy he is, I bet he sold off his own organs.
Motoko: Hm. And now he's the man in the can? That's not surprising at all.
Ishikawa: Hey. We're here to take over for ya.
Ishikawa: I found something strange when I was tracing the money flow. The organ fees from the Crime Victims Relief Fund were paid out to Meditech. There's the amount shown in their records right there. But here, zip. Data communication fees and business files don't jibe with that figure, either.
Motoko: Tampering from an outside source, you think?
Ishikawa: It's probably something along those lines. This company may be a big enterprise, but their internal data security is a joke.
Motoko: Togusa, let's pay a visit to that detective in the hospital. Later, Borma.
Togusa: Have fun!
Doctor: I believe it was last weekend. He was rushed here after he collapsed while working on an investigation. Our examination showed evidence of a drug of some type. Minor memory confusion was detected as well... Huh? Wait!
Togusa: Are you all right? They beat us to it!
Motoko: Hurry up and get in.
Motoko: Save the excuses for later. Tachikoma, are you there?
Tachikoma: I'm on the hospital's roof, ma'am!
Motoko: You better keep up with us!
Kokita: That was close.
Med Student 2: I was sweating bullets. What you took so damn long in there.
Med Student 3: Excuse me? If you hadn't been a greedy bustard, you wouldn't have forgotten to switch the stincky labels, you sap!
Kokita: Relax. We wiped that detective's memory, we should be okay then, right?
Med Student 3: But the point right now is... who was that?
Kokita: Who knows. Could be a detective who work with him.
Motoko: Tachikoma, can you catch up with the target vehicle?
Tachikoma: I could glue myself to their car, Major, but that might attract attention.
Motoko: Follow us along the rooftops. And get their license plate number.
Motoko: Togusa, set up the long-range radio to omnidirectional. I'm gonna send out a probe virus, you'll gauge the echo of it.
Togusa: What? But that's in violation of the telecommunications bureau.
Motoko: I think in a emergency, it qualifies.
Togusa: Will do. We'll transmit once we're out of the tunnel.
Togusa: Ready to transmit, Major. Go! I've got it. I've identified the getaway car. I have an ID on the registrant, too. Like I thought, looks like the perp's a med student intern. OK, what now?
Motoko: They're probably planning to lay low in the warehouse district by the port. Looks like it's time to call Batou.
Motoko: Keep tailing the getaway car until further orders. I'll meet up with Batou in Tachikoma.
Med Student 3:We are in over our heads, guys. We ought get down while we can. Let's dump it all!
Kokita: The only crime we're guilty of selling some organs cheaply to average folk who cannot afford prosthetics that are high price. Besides, even if we were arrested, I'll just call my dad and he'll fix it.
Med Student 2: Yeah. For now, though, what do you suggest putting these?
Kokita: We'll simply hide the car and stuff 'til things calm down. This place is nothing but junkyards and warehouses, right? We got one little car. Nobody won't notice if we ditch it here for a while.
Med Student 3: The man at the hospital, he just opened fire on us. What if he's part of that overseas Mafia we're hearing about the one behind all those abductions?
Kokita: Don't worry about it.
Med Student 3: Oh my god! He's gotta be! It's because we're butting in on their turf! If they catch us, they'll vivisect us and sell us for parts, won't they? Shit, the Mafia... We're history. We are so dead...
Kokita: Hey, will you shut up, you putz?
Med Student 3: It's them. It's them. All right...
Med Student 2: I think... we might really be in trouble here...
Motoko: Batou. You read me?
Batou: Not only that, I see you. I'm waiting in an ambush at the location you designated.
Motoko: Herd their car to point D-3. You can spook 'em, but don't kill 'em.
Batou: Whoa, you mean it? We can actually have some fun for change?
Motoko: Knock yourself out.
Batou: Hahaha! Yeah, now that's more like it. Tachikoma!
Tachikoma: Here goes!
Batou: Hm. That was them. All right, don't hit anything human, Tach.
Tachikoma: Just leave it to me.
Med Student 1: Hurry! Get clear of the car! Let's get out of here!
Batou: Woo-hoo, they don't give up easy. Okay, now hit 'em again!
Tachikoma: Now don't mind if I do!
Batou: Hey! So, what do you think? Is this dazzling style or not?
Motoko: Job well done.
Togusa: Oh, man. They went a little overboard.
Med Student 2: Easy on us!
Togusa: Med students, knew it.
Batou: Knowing that a bunch of morons like you could be poking around inside of my head some day really disgusts me.
Tachikoma: Mr. Batou! Look. See what I found.
Togusa: I'd say by the look of things, they've been switching labels of organs left over from cyborg operations because they sell them without consent.
Motoko: Wasn't there one more?
Batou: Oh? Stubborn damn kid, I'll secure him.
Motoko: No. Let me handle this. They picked a sick way to make their spending money. If we hand 'em over to the police, they'll only get a slap on the wrist and a warning. I'm gonna teach them a lesson.
Batou: Whoa, pretty scary. Say, what's up with her?
Togusa: Don't know.
Med Student 3: Eh!
Batou: Hold on! You guys will answer to me now.
Med Student 3: Aaagh! Spare me, please! Just don't take my organs.
Togusa: That mug of yours has yakuza written all over its ugly self. Hm?
Med Student 2: Uhhh...
Togusa: You think... I'm one?
Kokita: Ah, ah... Huh? What the... ? What the hell is that thing!? A way out!
Motoko: From what I see, your body is 100% natural. I can make buku bucks, selling you piecemeal on the black market.
Kokita: You're with... Hey, wait a minute. I've got distribution routes! It's really easy money. Uh... You wanna partner? My father can set you up with cars and storage. You don't have to worry about funding. C'mon, that's not a bad deal, is it?
Motoko: You think I'm dealing with the amateurs like you and your brain-challenge friends? Oh, I'll take over your distribution routes and then I'll take care of you. Dividing up your organs will eliminate evidence and net a tidy profit. Two birds with one stone.
Kokita: No, no, wait. I, I know! Want money? My dad can give you off the cash you want! No questions asked! Huh? A deal? Wha, what do you want?
Motoko: You're little game's gone too far. You and your friends have stuck your noses into a world, heh, you can't back out of.
Kokita: I'm sorry! Please! Let me go! I'll never do it again! Ever again!
Motoko: You're damn right!
Motoko: You're lucky I'm not the Yakuza.
Med Student 3: Huh!
Motoko: The heavy hitters in the underworld are not the types who can be reasoned with. Reassess your lives while you still can. You've got money and good educations, with all your body parts still intact.
Tachikoma: Major! I'm stuck!
Motoko: Just stay put. When we come back, we'll try to pry you out. We're handing these boys over to the police right now.
Tachikoma: Yes, ma'am.
Tachikoma: Oh, it's Mr. Batou!
Togusa: Hey, Big Guy. Don't you think the Major was behaving kind of funny today?
Togusa: Well, it seemed to me, I just happened to notice, but she wasn't acting the way she usually does.
Batou: You know she went full-cyborg around the same age as that girl who had transplant. This case probably dredged up a lot of unpleasant memories.
Batou: Any more on your mind?
Togusa: No, not really. It's just ironic. There's a little girl out there who fate dealt a rotten hand and was forced to have a heart transplant, then there's the CEO who wanted to be a cyborg so badly he got rid of his body parts.
Batou: Yeah, and so between the two, the organ business makes a profit, natural organs go for a premium, and the country's economy keeps goin'. Folks that aren't restricted by religion and the bank accounts so the only ones who get their powers on prosthetics that are high-performance top of the line...Mmm!...like Section 9. What's wrong, little guy? You got a heartache? 'cause you think you work for profiteers? Hm?
Togusa: No, it's not that. I was simply wondering which side of it the Major's on.
Togusa: What? But that's a totally different game! ...Ah?
Motoko: What are you fellows up to? Batou, not more weight training equipment. Blowing your pay is one thing, but you're wasting your money on stuff like this.
Batou: Am I really? Major Macho, why don't you stop trying to look female on the outside and switch over to a male chassis already? You'll be stronger and have more authority.
Batou: Let's do it. Hm-hum. Heh? Mgwhh!!
Motoko: So long as you can turn an opponent's over-amped aggression against him, the female model is just fine. Batou, I look forward to reading your report for today in which you state that you properly utilized all of the muscles in your head.
Togusa: You okay there, Big Guy?
Batou: Didn't...feel a thing...!