The little group that Yaichi has pulled together has never seemed terribly cohesive, though they do watch out for each other. Matsukichi has been acting a bit oddly lately and has seemed less interested in the group as a whole than usual, causing others to be a bit more wary of him. Little things start to surface that cause the others to view him a little more critically and he even finds himself not coming to Umezo's place anymore after a very restrained falling out with Okitake. When Masanosuke goes to visit him at his home with some pickles given to him from Okinu, Masanosuke notices that some things just don't fit in there, particularly the brooch that Matsukichi won't let him get near in the slightest.
As it turns out, Matsukichi is finding himself indebted to the owner of the Kiku-ya for things in the past and that has him getting involved in situations that don't help, even after being told by the owner to stay out of it because he can be reckless at times. The situation has Yaichi feeling a little less than thrilled at what may happen when one of his guys starts doing things like this and that pushes him towards nudging Masanosuke and Umezo into investigating it a bit more for him so he can keep a bit of distance from everything.
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