"Why not try writing once more?"
I would gladly write any number of letters, even to no avail, for my mother's sake. However, the last thing I wanted to do was badger Sensei. Much more than my father's scolding or my mother's disappointment, I feared the loss of Sensei's respect. I was worried I might have perturbed him already, and hence his silence with respect to my request.
"It's easy enough to write a letter, but this isn't something one manages by post. I'll need to get to Tōkyō and do some legwork."
"True, but with your father's condition there's no telling when that might be."
"I'm not going anywhere anytime soon. Until we have an outcome, recovery or otherwise, I intend to stay right where I am."
"I'm afraid you'll have to. One can't leave a man in your father's state to go and roam round Tōkyō."
At first, I was sympathetic toward my mother and her lack of worldly experience. I couldn't understand, though, why she insisted on raising this subject again at this time. I wondered if it was for her a form of diversion. Just as I could forget my ailing father and read quietly, maybe she too could shift her mind from caregiving and think on other things.
"The truth is ..." my mother started again.
"The truth is, I can't help thinking it would ease your father's mind if you secured a post before he passed. It looks like it may be too late, but he's still conversant and his mind is still sound. If only you could manage this one last thing for him."
I was in no position to perform such filial duty. I wrote not a word to Sensei.