Based on what little I knew, I did my best to console her. Sensei's wife, for her part, tried to find comfort in my company. We continued conversing on this same subject. However, I had not yet grasped the heart of the matter. Her disquiet stemmed from misgivings, and those misgivings, in turn, were but as an arrant wisp of telltale vapor. When it came to the true nature of things, there was much that she herself didn't know. What she did know, she was not at liberty to disclose in full. Thus it was that I, who sought to console her, and she, who sought comfort, were like two souls adrift on the waves. To steady herself, she reached out her hand to me, latching on to my equally ungrounded counsel.
Around ten o'clock, the sound of Sensei's footsteps echoed in the entryway. His wife, seeming to brush aside all that we'd been talking of, immediately sprang to her feet. Leaving me behind, she rushed out to greet Sensei, almost bumping into him as he slid open the panel. I followed after as fast as I could. Only the maidservant, who must have been dozing, failed to appear.
Sensei was in good spirits. His wife, however, looked happier still. I recalled how moments earlier her brow had been drawn tight and her delicate eyes had glistened with tears. The transformation was extraordinary. Assuming it was not all a ruse (and I couldn't imagine that it was), then it was entirely possible that I'd been played upon, in some mischievous female fashion, for the sake of my sentiment. In that moment, though, I wasn't wont to view her in such light. The lifting of her spirits, rather, relieved me. I realized that I needn't have been so concerned.