After working my way out of the bamboo grass with considerable effort, I arrived at a large pond. I sat at the water's edge and thought about what to do next. No great insights emerged. After a while, it occurred to me that perhaps if I mewed then the boarding student would come back for me. I tried mewing, but no one came. In the meantime, a wind had picked up over the water, and the sun had started to set. I was famished. Try as I might, I could mew no more. Having no other recourse, I resolved to seek out food. Wearily, I began to round the pond to my left. The going was terribly hard. Persevering, I forced myself to crawl on until, finally, I sensed the presence of humans. Thinking to just approach them, I breached the grounds through a hole in a bamboo fence. Fate is a curious thing. Had that fence not been broken, I might well have perished from hunger out there on the road. The shade of a common tree, they say, brings strangers together. I use this same hole in the fence, even today, to go and call on the neighboring Miké. At any rate, having stolen onto the grounds, it was unclear what to do next. It was growing darker, my belly was grumbling, cold had descended, and rain was beginning to fall. I could afford no further delay. My back against the wall, I made my way toward light and warmth. Thinking back on it now, I must have by that time been already under their roof. At this point, the opportunity to engage again with new humans, other than my boarding student, presented itself. The first I encountered was Osan. This one was unrulier still. At the first sight of me, she grabbed me by the scruff of the neck and tossed me out front. Thinking my cause was lost, I closed my eyes and trusted my fate to heaven. The hunger and cold, however, were too much to take. Avoiding Osan, I made my way back to the kitchen. Shortly, I was tossed out again. Crawling back in, I was tossed out, and being tossed out, I crawled back in. This was repeated, as I recall, four or five times. In the process, I came to dislike this Osan intensely. I stole Osan's mackerel pike the other day as payback, alleviating my long-harbored grudge. As I was being tossed out yet again, the master of the house appeared, demanding to know what the commotion was about. The maidservant, dangling me before him, complained how a stray kitten, though tossed out again and again, kept crawling back into the kitchen. The master, twisting the black hair under his nose, took a moment to study my face. If that was the case, he finally told her, then why not just let it stay. With that he retreated back to his room. He seemed a man of few words. The maidservant, greatly annoyed, dropped me into the kitchen. Thus it was that I came to abide in this house.