It was finally time to be seated. Each was left to chose his place, and all were seated with neither deference nor contention. Professor Hirota, contrary to his leisurely nature, was first to stake out a place. Yojirō and Sanshirō sat together at the foot of the table. The rest of the party mixed themselves accordingly, trusting the choice of neighbors to chance.
Between Nonomiya and Professor Hirota was a critic in a striped haori. Opposite was a scholar named Shōji. This was the doctor, a man of influence in the literature department, of whom Yojirō had spoken. He cut a dignified appearance in his frock coat. His hair was unusually long. Under the light of the electric lamps, it appeared as dark coils. His appearance was in marked contrast to Professor Hirota's close-cropped look. Haraguchi had seated himself at a distance. He was on the far corner, fully opposite Sanshirō. Over his folded collar he'd tied a broad band of black satin. Its loose ends were draped across his chest. Yojirō informed Sanshirō that all French artists wore similar attire. Sanshirō mused, as he sipped his bouillon, that it closely resembled a waist band knot.
The guests began, gradually, to converse. Yojirō drank his beer. He was less talkative than usual. Among this company, even Yojirō seemed restrained by a sense of respect. Sanshirō asked in a quiet voice, "No 'de te fabula' tonight?"
"I'm afraid not tonight," Yojirō replied.
Yojirō then turned and engaged the man next to him. He remarked that he had seen the other's essay and learned a great deal from it. He continued to express his appreciation for the work. The essay in question, however, was a work that Yojirō had disparaged thoroughly in Sanshirō's presence. Sanshirō was left bewildered. Yojirō turned back to him again.