- For the corporation, see Atsumichi Cybernetics Inc.
Between roughly 2077 and 2195 they were a threat watching from and lurking in the shadows within their territories. Starting sometime after 2195, the Atsumichi-kai had "come out of the shadows" as a legitimate and violent menace to those who would oppose it.
Since appearing in recent time, those who know of the Atsumichi-kai know them most infamously through its band of sword-wielding cyborg businessmen, internally known as 'Administrators', and the bloodthirsty tactics that they employ in the pursuit and/or defense of their interests. Despite their consistent show of cold-bloodedness, the group has mastered the art of plausible deniability, allowing them to get away with an abundance criminal activities, and even avoiding much of the otherwise nosy government and police interference.
The head office of the Atsumichi Cybernetics corporation, and by extension the Atsumichi-kai, has traditionally been inherited only via blood relation to its founder, Ishikawa Atsumichi, usually from father to son to grandson and so-on. Each CEO has complete and total power over every person underneath them, even bypassing any chain of command in the case that the CEO steps around a direct subordinate or lower. Similarly, a CEO does not have any restrictions on how long they reign for, as long as they do not break the previously-mentioned traditional restriction on who can be the next CEO.
- 1st CEO (2077—2102): Ishikawa Atsumichi
- 2nd CEO (2102—2130): Tanaka Atsumichi
- 3rd CEO (2130—2156): Tetsuo Atsumichi
- 4th CEO (2156—2180): Yousuke Atsumichi
- 5th CEO (2180—2195): Misato Atsumichi
Misato Atsumichi was the first female CEO of the Atsumichi, and also the CEO with the shortest reign, as she only controlled for fifteen years before handing the power down to her son. Misato herself stepped down to a lower, advisory position, where she could give her son advice as well as keep a motherly eye on him.
- 6th CEO (2195—Present): Sugarashi Atsumichi
Sugarashi Atsumichi is the youngest CEO to have control over the company and the syndicate, as he was given the rank and power when he was only eighteen years old. He is known for turning the Atsumichi from a profitable shadow organization into an even more fruitful and extensive criminal business. Since the start of his reign, the Atsumichi have undeniably shown more physical presence and cruel tendencies.
Connection to Atsumichi Cybernetics
It can be said that Atsumichi Cybernetics Incorporated (ACI) and the Atsumichi-kai are the same business, which is not entirely untrue. A significant percentage of ACI takes part in many Atsumichi-kai activities, by far the largest being the Administrators. To those who personally live in the neighborhood of the corporation (commonly referred to as Japantown or J-town), the Atsumichi are an organized crime syndicate under the surface of an otherwise legitimate company. Beyond this neighborhood, they are seen as a legitimate company altogether, with little being known about the underground criminal acts.
ACI has rooted its place in J-town society, as well as having presence in east-asian communities in general, controlling the majority of the J-town's culture and profiting off of it in many symbiotic ways. This has become doubly true with the recent inheritance of the family company going to Sugarashi Atsumichi, who is a rather eccentric yet arguably effective strategist, and who began to utilize more drastic and violent measures than his predecessors did in order to achieve company goals.
Thanks to their main body being ACI, the majority of Atsumichi-kai authorities are cyborgs, with varying percentages of their bodies having been replaced with synthetics.
At their basic corporate interest, the Atsumichi are involved with the technically illegal yet high quality integration of cybernetics into the bodies of individuals for non-medical purposes. Under CEO Sugarashi, the Atsumichi still extend nearly all of the same underground services that the original founder Ishikawa did under his reign, those being outside-the-law business practices offered to smaller businesses as well as individual people in exchange for monetary compensation. They have long since expanded their activities with the addition of loansharking, interrogation, infiltration, espionage, info trading, weapons sales, and many other things, even assassination. Beyond that, the Atsumichi also do business dealing out insurance policies. Especially popular is cyborg insurance, where a person who has a bionic body part can pay ACI for insurance on that part, in a country where the government refuses to or at the very least makes it hard for a person with non-medical bionics to have those parts insured. The Atsumichi has come to fill the void that the common distrust in the AS government constantly leaves.
The Atsumichi have grown quite the large following even outside of their local neighborhood. Sugarashi has managed to create something of a religion behind his promise to bring the benefits of cybernetic integration to the Cyberian people. Atsumichi loyalists can be said to be pro-cybernetics, and are commonly advocates of cyberization. The following started with the administrators, who in turn began to spread the faith around to subordinates and civilians alike. Followers of Atsumichi are prone to anti-government sentiments and actions, unofficially encouraged by Atsumichi, yet detached enough from the company to have its own culpability apart from the Atsumichi-kai's. The Atsumichi often leverage their power over faithful followers to have them carry out a multitude of tasks for a variety of reasons, most often to keep government authorities off their tails.
It can be argued whether or not the Atsumichi have gained a large enough following for their numbers combined to be a credible threat to the Unitary Government of Cyberia.
Before the Company
The founder of the Atsumichi Corporation, Ishikawa Atsumichi, was once part of a street gang comprised of young high schooler, who shared similar views that opposed the Cyberian government's restrictive policies, especially those which were imposed on the public development of artificial intelligence, androids, and cyborgism. Of course, they had little power to change the course of government legislation on their own, so the gang secluded themselves in their own community J-town to live in blissful ignorance of the law.
This gang later built their profits off of organizing gambling playhouses, both public and underground, and later informally branched out into units that covertly sabotaged their competition.
Formation of the Company
When Ishikawa finished his degree and later established the Atsumichi Cybernetics corporation, he never left behind his private support of the street gang that he was once a part of. Ishikawa used his rising status to lift the gang up with him, while keeping up the facade of a legitimate company to keep their underground operations in the dark, away from government eyes. While avoiding detection, he continued to profit off of both legal and underground gambling services, and soon took higher-level control over the now subordinate owners of various gambling houses within the community.
From there, ACI began to recruit people from these subordinate organizations for either legitimate employment in their growing company, or induction as a troop in their smaller yet more lucrative organized crime business.
Later into Ishikawa's reign as CEO, the Atsumichi corporation began to gradually increased their control on the J-town community through expanding their influence over more and more small businesses, advising and occasionally strong-arming them under the noses of the ASC government. Despite the occasional aggression, the general public of J-town began to trust ACI's advice and services more than they trusted the government's own. ACI essentially gained unofficial ownership of the businesses they controlled through its trustworthiness, helpfulness, and reliability, and let the former runners operate semi-autonomously under the corp's guidance, like a pet. Ishikawa's company was paid sums of money in the form of either official donations or unreported bank notes, in exchange for the syndicate's employees dispensing a number of dubiously legal services, including but not limited to business advice, business manipulation, and even retaliation. Recurring payments could also be made in order to receive continuous services such as security, protection, and insurance.
On top of the dirty money, the corp also made legitimately legal profits off of the high-end, high quality bionics used for medical ends, such as replacement of a lost limb, eye, or other such injuries. The company often used these and other legal profits, like donations, to launder the money gained from their extralegal business practices.
At the top of the ACI hierarchy, the high-status members of the company have their own group separate from the lower workers. This group commonly holds mutual respect for one another in high regard as if they were an extended family, even though the majority of them are not blood relatives of the real Atsumichi family. Mutual respect is the way of life within this extended family, even if that same family takes advantage of outsiders on the daily.
Chief Executive Officer
At the very top of the hierarchy, there lies the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Atsumichi Cybernetics, who is the leader of both the public-facing facade, and the corporate gang that they are better known for within certain knowledgeable populations. The CEO position has never been held by anyone other than a blood relative of the Atsumichi family, which is the current established precedent at the company. The CEO of the Atsumichi Extended Family holds actual, absolute power, as opposed to just being a figurehead like those of some other companies. As the most powerful person in the company, they exercise direct authority to dispense orders to employees and groups of employees of any size. The CEO is often referred to respectfully as "father" by subordinates, chiefly Administrators, regardless of differences in age.
Administratorsrepossessing) assets from clients, should problems come up with said contracts. Many of the contracts with civilians are built purposefully predatory in order to consume the person's wealth and being. An Administrator's worth is determined by their proficiency in forming and severing bonds with Atsumichi clients.
Many if not all Administrators have had their bodies subjected to heavy alteration through Atsumichi's biomechatronics. It is not uncommon for each member of the Administrator class to have both arms and both legs completely replaced by top-of-the-line synthetic limbs, granting them highly increased agility and strength compared to even that of the above-average natural person. Some go as far as replacing their own eyes with bionics, and few go even further beyond in the pursuit of even more power. Administrators are among the highest-paid members of the Atsumichi underground, second only to the CEO themselves. These high-ranking men are always well-dressed in clean, tailored business attire, and act accordingly as a sign of their status in J-town.
After Sugarashi inherited ownership the family's company from his mother, he began to take the syndicate business practices into harsher waters. At the order of their boss, the Administrators became increasingly more capable of physical violence, and more willing to use it in the fulfillment of their objectives. They took their otherwise reserved strong-arming tactics and ran further with them, threatening civilians more readily, enacting violent revenge and other acts more often, and even conducting forceful kidnappings for a multitude of different end goals.
Sugarashi had at one point commissioned swordmasters to train his direct subordinates in quick, efficient swordfighting, which was readily enhanced by their transition into cyborgs. Soon after, the Administrators began to appear much more often with a sheathed sword held at or strapped to their side, the specific type of which is subject to the individual company man's preference. These swords are acquired by various means, legal and not, although they are generally issued modern-made training katanas for their instruction. After training, Administrators are usually expected to arm themselves with one or more of their own cutting instrument(s) of their choice, which will directly affect their ability to execute their more violent tasks. They tend to pride themselves on, and compete with one another in regards to the quality, extravagance, sharpness, place of origin, kill count, etc. of their personally acquired weapons. Some of them even collect weapons for use and/or display purposes. The Administrators are known to not be shy in their usage of their swords, especially in the form of confrontation, and the repossession of their cybernetic products. The fact that Administrators are capable of easily cutting their targets down, in a country where guns are so common, lends towards their chilling reputation.
What all current Administrators have in common is extensive training in east-asian, unarmed martial arts, as well as iaidō swordsmanship. This training is expected of and bestowed upon them as one of their first rites of passage to solidifying their place in the Atsumichi extended family. The training becomes progressively harsh and speedy as it advances, ultimately culminating in the necessary performance of their skills learned, including the use of a genuine edged sword. An Administrator's prowess in iaidō accounts for the basis of their extreme precision, accuracy, and lethality with their bladed weapon(s) of choice. Many tenured Administrators possess skill in bladed weaponry such that they can instantly dismember any part of the average person with a single clean, blindingly quick cut. Lesser-capable Administrators still leave very little time for a target to react and defend themselves. Unarmed martial arts are an Administrator's alternative moveset, in the circumstance that their weapon(s) are unavailable.
After completing their common training, Administrators will hone and build upon their abilities using their own styles, weapons, alternative training, etc. This results in individualized skillsets among the Administrator class, and even sparring challenges amongst the brothers. Administrators utilize these learned abilities in conjunction with their heavily modified bodies to operate in an exceedingly lethal and speedy manner as part of their duties expected of them by Sugarashi.
The lawmen of ACI are lawyers of several different kinds, tasked with advising members of the company of all things relevant to Cyberian legislation, be it simple legal advice or how to get away with murder. The lawmen are one of many supporting roles in the Atsumichi corporation, as opposed to the likes of the administrators, who are the physical doers, and are superior to lawmen.
Accountants are Atsumichi members that handle the financial situations in the company, and handle them very well. The accountants not only deal with internal finances and money laundering, but they also supervise the finances of the businesses and individuals who have willingly or unwillingly found themselves under the private umbrella of the corporation. They will be the first ones to inform the administrators and CEO alike about a particular person's or group of persons' failure to pay up what is owed. Accountants have just about the same status as lawmen, at least in regards to being subordinate to administrators.
Little brothers are essentially new recruits of the Atsumichi organized crime syndicate. To other companies, they would be referred to as interns; overworked, and at first unpaid, lower-ranked employees who seek to rise higher in status within the extended family. Despite being burdened with a forcibly fluid schedule and multiple tasks, little brothers are often invited to respectable dinners and ceremonies with higher ranking Atsumichi members as a sign of the mutual respect they expect out of the recruits. Little brothers are regularly tested, whether they like it or not and whether they know it or not. Those higher on the ladder seek to find the little brothers' strengths, weaknesses, and aptitudes, in order to pre-categorize them into future, higher status roles.
Little brothers join ACI for all kinds of reasons, even including those who end up insolvent to the Atsumichi family and must abandon their previous life to work off their debt with Atsumichi. Most, however, come from those who were a part of many lesser street gangs, which the Atsumichi seek to dissolve in one way or another.
Similarly to little brothers being named "little" brothers, the administrators are said to be the "big" brothers.
On the more legitimate side of operations, ACI employs mostly what are called "common workers" by the crime syndicate side. Common workers are the brains of the company; researchers, developers, programmers, surgeons, maintainers, and PR managers. They are what drives the business through the betterment of the field of biomechanical cybernetics. Due to the nature of the ASC government's restrictive legislation regarding the development and implementation of bionics, a large portion of the work that goes into them is put under the legal radar anyways, as it would otherwise be illegal to work on bionics for non-medical purposes.
In the Public Eye
In the eyes of the general public, the Atsumichi corporation is most often seen as quite a noble company that advocates for cyborg rights, in a country where the government tends restricts those rights. Atsumichi company men are almost always seen well-dressed in tailored business suits and in possession of expensive belongings. Some of them even collect swords new and old. Atsumichi status has become a popular public role model in the J-town communities, to the extent that media such as advertisements and magazines have been made featuring their likenesses.
In the Government Eye
The Unitary Government of Cyberia has mixed feelings about the Atsumichi corporation. On one hand, the government dislikes their advocacy of cyborg rights, but on the other hand the government cannot fault their surface-level legality. ACI is known to pay their corporate taxes in full and on time each year, and has never once denied a request for inspection or questioning. Overall, Atsumichi remains in good standing, business-wise. Though government remains suspicious of the Atsumichi corp's internal operations, they are unaware of the expertly obscured hard evidence that is necessary to convict the corporation of any crimes committed. Furthermore, government is in fact not completely informed of the nature of Atsumichi's grand role in the shaping and extortion of the Cyberian J-town culture.
In the Underground
The Atsumichi corporation has long since solidified its role as a major kingpin in J-town communities in most but not all cities in Cyberia. The company's origins had been born out of making a profit off of gambling houses, but eventually evolved into more of a well-organized gang with a company that serves the community it grew up in, even if with a bit of tough love. Those who have become or have always been disillusioned with the Cyberian government often choose to seclude themselves within these very communities; these dense urban jungles, under the authority of the Atsumichi. Much of the crime in Atsumichi's neighborhoods often goes unreported to the Antarctic State authorities, due to the neighborhood public putting more stock in the company's help, rather than the government's. As such, government authorities have become less and less welcome about the place.
The Atsumichi company has these strong ties with J-town's underworld culture and economy through connections made and maintained with the numerous smaller businesses. Every storefront in J-town that a person walks into has a likelihood of being a puppet of the Atsumichi. Those that aren't, are likely a part of one of a select few rival gangs. Atsumichi territory spans large swathes of east-asian enclaves, where administrators openly patrol, assist, and sometimes antagonize the people. At the street-level, the administrators are known to be a blessing and a curse, as they both conduct violence and keep people safe from it, in differing capacities. Common low-level crime is reduced due to the fact that administrators patrol and guard their communities against rival crime and gang activity, even if it is only done so the Atsumichi are the ones collecting the public's money at the end of the day.