Komazawa, the factory owner, is feudal and new rich (if such a thing is possible); totally uncool. He runs his factory a bit like Willy Wonka runs his: lots of singing, no one being aloud out at night, everyone being patted on the head when the Big Man does his tours.

Murakawa, sophisticated, owner of well-cut suits and a huge black Mercedes, is an heir to the zaibatsu. Old rich, European breakfasts, American management techniques; he hates Komazawa.

Okano, with a shady ultranationalist past, is now a shady ultra-capitalist who makes his money as a go-between on huge, shady deals between the heirs to the zaibatsu and government ministers. He loves German existentialists and manipulating people into doing things that aren't good for them (i.e. fucking with people).

Kikuno wants to retire from her Kyoto geisha life and Okano manipulates her into deciding that she wants to work at Komazawa's sad factory on the shores of Lake Biwa.

Otsuki is the strong youth in a white windbreaker. Okano manages to manipulate Komazawa into making life really tough for Otsuki and for Otsuki's girl. Evil Okano then puts Otsuki in touch with weird labour union pals...

An enjoyable read, but it's not very sexy. It's rusting machinery in polluted fields next to dirty lakes. It's those old Japanese offices: damp, crammed with dull grey metal furniture, yellowing photographs on the wall, a mouldy stuffed animal in a dusty case.