It was Yama Arashi who treated me to ice water on my first arrival here, but favor from a two-face can tarnish one's reputation. I only drank one cup, and he only paid one sen and five rin. However, the thought of being beholden to a cheat and a swindler, even for a trivial amount, would unsettle me all the way to my grave. Tomorrow I would go to the school and return his money. I borrowed three yen from Kiyo, and in the five years since I haven't returned it. It's not that I can't return it, it's that I haven't. Kiyo is not eager to have her money back and is in no way dependent on it for her livelihood. A stranger would feel obligated to pay her back promptly, but I don't. To worry about returning her money would be to doubt her sincerity and disparage her noble spirit. I don't keep the money to slight her, but rather to tighten the bond between us. Of course there's no comparison between Kiyo and Yama Arashi, but to receive favor, whether it be for ice water or a cup of tea, is an act of goodwill and a silent offering of one's respect to the giver. To take on a debt of gratitude, when chipping in one's own share would be simpler, is a willful bestowing of honor that money can't buy. Though I may not hold rank or title, I am my own man. When a free man bows to another, he's giving a priceless gift.
I felt that I'd given something priceless to Yama Arashi in exchange for a mere one sen and five rin, and it was he who should be grateful to me. He was a disgraceful rogue for pulling devious stunts behind my back. If he was after a quarrel then a quarrel he was going to get.