THE SILVER CASE: What Is Uehara Kamui?

As I described above, besides slaughtering little girls like cattle, Curtis also sexually exploits the orphans the Immigration Bureau sends him to kill. While Kill the Past stories are rarely concerned with good and evil, Curtis is an especially heinous villain, rivaled in the series overall only by Uminosuke himself. Garcian calls him “as vile as you’re gonna get,” and where Suda writes antagonists such as Kenjiro Matsuoka and Andrei Ulmeyda with some sympathy and respect, Curtis receives no positive characterization. He is dismissed as “just a punk with a gun.” Rather than more ambiguous like Ayame Shimohira, Kurumizawa Kosuke, or Badman, Curtis should be understood as absolutely evil. Travis Bell also emphasizes that he does all of this with government sanction. Curtis’s existence condemns the US just as the Shelter Kids Policy condemns Japan. The Killer7, stooges to the US, pursue Curtis only because he attacks the Immigration Bureau, not for his routine abuse and killing.

Screenshot from "Encounter." Light shines up from below Travis Bell, who stands in the center of the scene, looking down, his shadow projected above him. His tank top bears the words "BEAT ROCK." The subtitles read, "And it's all sanctioned by the government."

The player fights Curtis once but has two much more conventional boss battles against his adopted daughter, “Ayame Blackburn,” who helps him kidnap children from ISZK Land. In an instance of absurd humor, Ayame dresses in a school uniform, wears a jarring anime girl mask, and shouts Japanese phrases like an anime protagonist before attempting to riddle the player character with bullets.

Screenshot of "Encounter." Ayame Blackburn, wearing an anime girl face mask, shouts her name surrounded by emphasis lines and bubbles like in an anime.

Ayame is nonetheless Ayame: a particularly efficient and dangerous assassin and likely the most difficult opponent in killer7. Contrary to normal video game difficulty patterns, the foot soldier Ayame is substantially tougher than the old men the player fights, such as Curtis himself. If Shimohira Ayame is as fast, stealthy, and indestructible as Ayame Blackburn, it seems plausible that she could abduct Fujiwara and defeat Republic in “Decoyman.” After the first battle, Ayame Blackburn escapes with a bus of abducted children that the Killer7 follow to Curtis’s estate. In a second battle in the Large Hall there, the Killer7 kill Ayame. Her body tumbles over, knocking off her mask to reveal that she is the one orphan girl who survived the massacre at the Immigration Bureau.

Screenshot of "Encounter Part 2." In a dark room, Ayame Blackburn lies dead on her back. Her anime girl mask has fallen off, exposing her face, which is rendered in a much more realistic style. Her white panties are prominently visible under a plaid miniskirt. She stares with open eyes.

As I explain below, another Kun Lan ally, Coburn Elementary School, is linked to ELBOW. Based on this, Curtis kidnaps the girl and uses Shelter Kids-style brainwashing to transform her into his Ayame slave. Has he used these techniques on other children as well? Alternatively, the girl has already received an Ayame-style personality that Curtis awakens by “death-filing” her. Alluding to the literal meaning of “Ayame,” in Hand in killer7 Suda describes her as “the flower who bloomed at ISZK Land.”