"No doubt it's a reader's submission, published verbatim. The news staff did nothing to confirm it. There's no shortage of such fodder at Literary Review. Most of what comes in is outright villainous. If you dig deep enough, it's concocted rubbish, some even blatantly so. You want to know why? They're all motivated by desire for personal gain. When I held the editor's pen, these sordid submissions went straight to the trash. That's exactly what this is - the work of our opposition."
"Why my name and not yours?"
"I wonder," Yojirō said and paused for a moment, then proposed an explanation. "That could be it. You're a regular student, and I'm an elective studies student. That's why."
To Sanshirō, however, this explanation was wholly inadequate. He was still put out.
"I should never have used that petty 'Reiyoshi' pen name. I should have gone boldly as 'Yojirō Sasaki.' Who else but Yojirō Sasaki could have authored such a piece?"
Yojirō was serious. He was, it seemed, genuinely upset that credit for 'Great Dark Void' had been usurped from him and assigned to Sanshirō. To Sanshirō, this was all asinine.
"Have you talked to the professor?" he asked.
"That's the crux of it. It's not about who authored 'Great Dark Void,' be it you, me, or whomever. The professor's character is under attack, so I have to tell him. Under normal circumstances, I could simply feign ignorance, say it was some sort of mistake. An essay titled 'Great Dark Void' had appeared in a periodical under an assumed name. It was penned by an admirer, so he needn't worry about it. He'd simply raise his eyebrows and that would be the end of it. I can't do that this time. I have to come clean and take full responsibility. If all had gone well, I'd have gladly denied involvement. To stand silent as all goes awry, though, is sheer torture. After all, I started this, and I can't watch from the sideline as a virtuous man is dragged through the muck on my account. Aside from the issues of right vs wrong, I simply will not see him suffer."
Sanshirō, for the first time, regarded Yojirō with a sense of admiration.