"The nymph's nose seems awfully small." "I'd call it average. But forget the nose. Read what he wrote." What he'd written was as follows. "Long ago, in a certain land, there lived an astronomer. One night he ascended his platform, as he did most every night, to study the heavens. A beautiful nymph appeared on high and began to strum a delicate, unearthly tune. The astronomer listened with rapture, taking no notice as the cold crept through his bones. By morning, a pure white frost coated his lifeless body. The old man, who's known as a teller of tales, insists that this one is true." "What rubbish is this? There's no point to it. This is the work of a bachelor of science? He should try reading Bungei Club. Might do him some good." Hanako rips on Kangetsu. Meitei, at this point largely for his own amusement, offers her a third card. This one has a sailboat printed on it, with some lines as usual dashed off below. "Last night's inn. A maiden of sixteen. Alone with no parents. Plovers on wave-swept rocks. She wakes at night and cries to them. Her seafaring parents lost beneath the waves." "Not bad at all. I'm impressed. Fully intelligible." "It is?" "Certainly. I could put the shamisen to it." "In that case it must be alright. How about this one?" Meitei's still at it. "No, thank you, I've seen enough. He's not entirely uncultured." She's seems to have formed her opinion and has no further questions. "You'll pardon, then, my imposition. I'd prefer you not mention to Kangetsu that I called." She demands to know anything and everything about Kangetsu. Then she turns around and seems to expect that, with respect to her own actions, Kangetsu be kept in the dark. "Okaay." The master and Meitei respond with lukewarm affirmation. "I'll see that it's worth your trouble," she adds for assurance as she rises to go. The two of them see her off and return to their seats. "What was that?" Meitei immediately asks. "What was that?" the master echoes the same words. From the inner room they can hear the wife, no longer able to contain herself, laughing audibly. "That, my good lady, was mundanity in the flesh. Mundanity in such abundance it oozes from every pore. Don't hold back now, let it out with a good long laugh."