There were times when K's rugged and distant demeanor reassured me. At those times, I would scold myself for harboring suspicions and apologize to K in my mind. While growing apologetic toward K, I regarded myself as a lowlife, and I was hit with a sudden sense of shame. Before long, though, my prior suspicions would return with a vengeance, commanding my thoughts and skewing everything to my own disadvantage. K's looks, it seemed, were the kind that women favored. Unlike my own fidgety disposition, his demeanor was appealing to the opposite sex. What faults he had, he compensated for with rugged masculinity, appearing superior, on the whole, to myself. Our areas of study were different, but I knew, of course, that I could never match him in scholarship. -- All his merits assaulted my thoughts at once, and my brief assurance soon gave way to anxiety.
Seeing me so unsettled, K suggested we should return to Tōkyō if I wasn't enjoying myself. This steeled my resolve to stay. The truth, perhaps, was that I didn't want K back in Tōkyō. We circled the Bōshū headland and emerged on the opposite side. Under a blistering sun, we forced ourselves on through Kazusa, whose modest distances proved deceptively arduous. I saw no purpose anymore in trudging so. I said this half-jokingly to K. He stated in response that we were born with feet, and thus we walk. He added that we should cool ourselves in the sea, and he didn't hesitate to do so, regardless of place or time. Afterward, though, the merciless sun would beat us back down, leaving us languid and worn.