My mother, of course, knew what my father had contracted and knew of its terrible nature. She was also aware that she herself was infected. It's still not clear to me, however, that she really believed she would lose her life. The words she spoke when feverish, though coherent and concise, often vanished from her memory without so much as a trace. Accordingly ... but I've digressed from the topic at hand. This tendency to dissect thing so, to turn them round and scrutinize every facet, was at that time already ingrained in my being. I think it's important to tell you this up front. This account, which is hardly vital to the story I intend to relate, perhaps will serve to illustrate this tendency at work. Please read it in this light. I'm disposed to viewing the conduct and actions of others through the lens of my own ethics, and over time I believe this has led me, more and more, to question people's decency. This has certainly contributed, in no small way, to my discontent and distress. Please bear this in mind.
For the sake of coherence, I'd best set my story back on track. As I prepare to write at length, I believe myself, for a man in my situation, to be relatively well composed. The echo of the trains, that reaches one's ears when the world is sleeping, has now ceased. Outside the shutters, at some point, the insects have started their faint and doleful song, evoking thoughts of the dew-covered autumn chill. In the next room, oblivious to my endeavor, my wife is resting peacefully. The tip of my pen scratches out these characters one by one. With feeling of calm I work the page. If my pen goes astray, it's only for want of practice, not for want of a quiet mind.