The moon wasn't out, but a low bank of clouds refracted the city lights and recast them around me as a dingy glow. Only chirping crickets and the occasional hum of a passing car in the distance broke the silence.

After looking around to make sure there were no other furtive visitors (or visitants) to marble town tonight, I opened the flask of whiskey I'd brought along, took a swig and settled in. From my carefully chosen perch I could see the grave of novelist Yukio Mishima between two imposing tombstones. This wasn't a vigil — it was a stakeout.

I was chasing a rumor that yakuza and right-wingers sometimes visit Mishima's grave in the dead of night, and from the fresh flowers and various libations left by his headstone, I surmised he had regular visitors. But in the lonely gloom, I hoped any callers that night would be of the corporal variety.