Soon after, Yama Arashi arrived. His nose was purple and swollen, looking like it should be surgically drained. It may have just been vanity, but it seemed to me that his face was considerably more damaged than my own. We were close colleagues with desks side by side. And unfortunately our desks faced directly toward the entrance. Two odd faces were lined up together, and any fellow with idle time was certain to look our way. They commented sympathetically on our misfortune, but no doubt they took us for a couple of fools. Otherwise, why all the whispers and smirks? I was greeted with applause in the classroom, and several students even cried banzai. I don't know if this was sincere enthusiasm or ridicule. In the middle of all this attention, Red Shirt approached nonchalantly to console us on our terrible misfortune. He felt very sorry about our situation. He had discussed the newspaper article with the principal, and they were taking steps to request a correction, so we needn't be worried. "My brother invited you to attend, and this is what happened. Words can't express my regret." He continued, half apologetically, to ensure us that he would make every effort to manage the fallout. The principal appeared from his office after third hour with a worried look, remarking how the paper had stirred up a hornet's nest. For my part, I wasn't worried in the least. If I were to be dismissed, then I would simply resign before they dismissed me. However, since I'd done nothing wrong, my resignation would only embolden the newspaper in its impertinence. I felt an obligation to stand my ground and demand a correction. I was inclined to stop by the paper on my way home to press the matter, but the school was taking steps to force a retraction, so I decided to hold off.