Alright guys, here's the deal: I'm stuck in the story right now. Believe me, I wanna write, but I just can't find the right idea right now. So, here's my first attempt at a short little filler to hopefully keep the readers entertained whilst I try to come up with some ideas as to what I can do to bring out another semi-decent chapter. See if I can't give you a little background on Sato's past (or lack thereof, whichever way you wanna look at it). Anyways, it's a short deal about his dad, hope ya like it!

Filler 1 - The Art of War

***********************************************************************

Kiyoshi looked out across the vast expanse of desert land in front of him. The city looked almost completely barren. How could anybody possibly survive out here?

"Hey rookie," Kiyoshi pulled his attention away from the city and back to his squad mate. This was his first actual experience out in the field, and he had to admit, it was making him a little nervous. "Step it up, will ya? We don't have all day."

"Sorry, it's just-"

"You're nervous. It's natural; the first time out onto a battlefield, everybody gets nervous. Come on; squad's waitin' on us." He nodded and caught up to his comrade. They were going into the city; their mission was to neutralize the resistance forces in the area. A simple task, Kiyoshi had gone through plenty of training, he was positive he could handle it.

Thirty minutes later, Kiyoshi found himself making the move into the city; into the urban combat zone. This was it, what he had been trained to do. The squad was moving slowly, not wanting to draw unwanted attention. It was a good ten minutes before they met the first batch of resistance. Kiyoshi stopped dead in his tracks, hands trembling as he raised his rifle and stared down the barrel at the resistance fighter in front of him. The soldier hadn't noticed him yet, and he wanted to keep it that way; but he couldn't pull the trigger.

"Rookie, fire!" The voice caught the soldier's attention, he spun and began to raise his rifle when a burst of shots zipped through the air and into his face. Kiyoshi lowered his rifle, staring in disbelief at his squad mate who had just killed the man. He hung his head, not wanting to meet his comrade's gaze. He hadn't been able to pull the trigger; he couldn't just extinguish another person's life. All the training in the world couldn't prepare him for the grim reality of killing.

"I- I'm sorry. I couldn't do it." His comrade nodded; he wasn't angry, but he wasn't happy either. Kiyoshi looked up at him.

"I know. But that's part of the reality of war. Unfortunately, killing is one of those things that just gets easier the more you do it. You have to pull the trigger, because all that matters in war is survival. Above all else, you have to survive. And in order to do that, you have to be able to kill. Those men staring down the opposite end of the barrel are ready to give their lives to kill us. We have to be just as ready to do the same." Kiyoshi nodded. It was a grim reality indeed, but it was one he had to live with.

"Hit the dirt!" One of the other squad members cried. Before Kiyoshi could figure out what was going on, there was shrapnel flying everywhere. He fell back, shielding his face from the exploding metal. When the explosion died, he quickly pulled himself up to his feet and look at his squad. His CO was lying on the ground; shrapnel was buried in his leg.

"Rookie, watch out!" Kiyoshi turned to see a group of three resistance fighters running down the street towards them. He raised his rifle and aimed for the first one, but again he couldn't shoot.

"What are you waiting for!? Shoot!" Again, Kiyoshi's hands were trembling. It was too hard, how could he be expected to just take another person's life without just cause? What if these men had families at home waiting for their safe return? Children waiting for their father to come home.

"I can't!"

"If you don't, we're all dead! Fire, rookie! Don't think, just fire! Do it!" Kiyoshi squeezed his eyes shut and forced himself to pull the trigger. The assault rifle jerked in his palms, but he kept it steady; sending a spray of bullets down the street towards the attackers. He continued firing until his clip ran dry and he heard the click of an empty weapon. When it was over, he opened his eyes again, surveying the aftermath of what he had just done. All three of the resistance troops lay sprawled out on the ground, dead or dying. It was done. Just like that.

**************

"Just like that, it was all done. I think I killed a part of myself that day too. Now look at me." Kiyoshi looked down at his hands. That had been four years ago, he had been transferred out of the military almost two years later. Into this organization; OBURA. This wasn't the life he wanted for his son. Not for Sato, he didn't want Satoshi to have to be exposed to this brutal side of life. As it was, he made it painfully clear that he didn't want Sato to know he was working for the organization. As far as his son was concerned, he was just in a branch off the military. His son was three now, Kiyoshi had kept telling himself he was going to quit the organization so he could have time to be with his wife and child. But there was something about it that he couldn't leave. Maybe it was the action, or the rush that came with risking his life. Or maybe, it was the killing. He wanted to deny it, but he couldn't. Part of him felt alive every time he pulled the trigger. And it was in his blood, he was a born soldier whether he liked it or not. That worried him, he hoped against hope that the blood of a soldier didn't also flow through his son. Perhaps after he finished this mission he'd do some more thinking on the subject.

"Damn, what the hell am I doing? I've got a job to do." He clutched the dog tags around his neck, they were his good luck charm; he never went on a mission without them. Kiyoshi checked his Beretta as he moved out of the safety of the shadows and deeper behind enemy lines. Simple infiltration, not anything he didn't think he could handle.

****************

"Yes, yes, of course I have the weapons. We'll make the exchange tomorrow, at-" Nabura cut off as he felt cold metal placed against the back of his neck.

"Put the phone down and raise your arms, slowly." Kiyoshi jammed the barrel of his Beretta into the back of his neck. Nabura slowly did as he was instructed, raising his arms above his head.

"You know, they're using you Kiyoshi." Kiyoshi raised an eyebrow and tilted his head slightly.

"Yeah? What would you know? Just keep quiet and come with me." Nabura did as he was told.

"They have your son. Right now, as we speak." That caught his attention. Kiyoshi spun Nabura around, grabbed him by the collar, and slammed him into a nearby wall as he jammed the gun into his neck.

"What the hell do you know about my son!?" Nabura chuckled, despite the uncomfortable situation.

"OBURA, they have your son. I have the proof if you want it. Right over there on my computer." Kiyoshi glanced over at the flat screen monitor and tossed Nabura toward it.

"Show me. That is, if you want to live." A smile crossed Nabura's lips as he moved towards the computer and did as he was told. It took a few moments to find, but he did. What he brought up was a camera view of the outside of Kiyoshi's home. Kiyoshi growled and began to yell at the man, but cut off when he saw movement on the screen. Somebody dressed completely in black moving into the house from the backyard. He heard faint cries from inside the house after the figure moved inside, then two gunshots. The cries were silenced. His wife, the man had just murdered his wife! And even worse, Sato was inside.

"Sato!" Kiyoshi pushed Nabura out of the way of the screen as he watched the man emerge from the home with a small child in his arms. He growled as the video cut off. He turned to Nabura and was greeted with a single gunshot. The bullet hit him in the stomach and caused him to reel back.

"Depressing isn't it? To know that your own employers would be plotting against you behind your back." Kiyoshi winced, and glared at Nabura.

"You bastard! How do I know it wasn't you killed my wife!? I want my son," He pointed his gun at Nabura menacingly. "Give him to me now!"

"I don't have your son. You OBURA lap dogs are all alike, too blind to see the truth." Another bullet hit him in the gut. Kiyoshi cried out and fell back.

"And you had the nerve to attempt to infiltrate my home!? Do you know who I am!?" Kiyoshi looked up at Nabura as the man moved to stand over him. All he could think about was Sato. He prayed that it was all a lie, that his wife was still alive and well and taking care of their little boy. Before he could speak, Nabura fired off another shot, and then another, and another. Kiyoshi's body convulsed with each shot until Nabura finally stopped firing.

"Sato, I-" Before Kiyoshi could finish his sentence, Nabura fired another shot. The bullet tore through his skull, silencing his voice and ending his life. Nabura scowled down at the dead man as he tossed the gun away. His security came rushing in a few minutes later. Nabura reached down for the dog tag around Kiyoshi's neck, pulled it off, and tossed it over to the guard.

"Send that back to OBURA, tell them that's what happens to those who cross Black Asp. Oh, and clean up this mess, I don't want the blood to stain the carpet." The guard nodded and picked up the lifeless body before leaving the room.

*************

"Where's momma!? I want momma!" Sato screamed between sobs. He had been taken away from his home, and for what? Where was he? More importantly, why was he there?

"Your mother isn't coming," A tall man clad in a military outfit came striding into the room. He looked intimidating, which only added to the fear Sato was feeling. "From this day forward, OBURA is your family."

*************

Sato squeezed his palm shut around the dog tag as he lay in his bed. He was fifteen. Both of his parents were dead, and he was nothing more than a tool now. A weapon to do with as OBURA saw fit. He couldn't complain; it was the only life he really knew. The dog tag was the only constant reminder he had that he, at one time, had been a part of an actual family. He had been too young to really know his father, but he could never get over his death, or his mother's. OBURA had kept him in the dark about his mother's death; all he knew was that she was dead. He didn't question them; he never questioned anything they told him. Who was he to question his superiors? Not like he really needed to know, all that mattered was that she was dead and that he was alone. He took a long look at the dog tag again before rolling onto his side and falling into a dreamless slumber.

**There, not an actual update, but I've been wanting to put some kind of background about Sato's dad in for a while. Hopefully it was enjoyable. Just bear with me, I'll get a new chapter up ASAP, I promise.