I shall not go to the cottage ever again.
This time, I shall keep this oath to myself. The cottage is tantamount to weakness; Samurai are everything but. I am not. I may not enjoy the act of killing as such. I enjoy a clean, professional kill, though. I enjoy being a shadow, striking effectively, and disappearing into the darkness again, without leaving a trace. Does my intellectual, detached approach to my work make me less of a warrior? A powerless one?
My fingers are trembling, strewing dry twigs that will burn faster than thin parchment on the wooden floor. They tremble even more, while clanging the flints against one another.
Yet the fire doesn't flare up; my own self-hatred does, as I put out the first flames with my heavy boot last moment.
No Samurai is weak, indeed no one except me.
Seeing this as an established fact, I cross the room with heavy steps, lying face-down on the narrow tatami. There is a thin linen thrown on top of it the only vague admission to us bei