Thereafter I set myself to drafting this letter. I'm unaccustomed to taking pen in hand, and it pained me greatly when events and thoughts in my head would not take shape on paper. I came close to reneging on my promise. I laid my pen down many times, but never for very long. Within the same hour I would reach for it again. I may strike you as a man consumed by adherence to obligation, and I don't deny this. As you know, I'm a solitary man with limited social contact. Turn which way I may, nowhere do I face any real obligation to speak of. By design or by nature, I've strived to live a humble and quiet life. Banishing obligation offhand, however, was never my intent. If anything, my deference toward obligation is excessive, and I lack the vigor to withstand its demands. Hence the subdued existence you've come to witness. Once I've made a promise, therefore, it troubles me deeply to renege. In your case, to avoid any such ill feeling, I found myself compelled to pick back up the pen I'd laid aside.
It's also the case that I wanted to write. Obligation aside, I want to explain my past. I believe it's fair to say that my past is my own and unique to me. It would be a shame, would it not, to depart this world without a chance to share it. This too is in part what drives me. I would never share my experiences, of course, with those not fit to receive them. Faced with such choice, I'd rather carry them to my grave. In fact, it's only you that prevents my past from remaining my own, that allows it to serve another, albeit vicariously. Of the tens of millions inhabiting Japan, it's only to you that I wish to convey my past. You're sincere. You confessed to me your sincere desire to learn of life's lessons.