①『To the most elusive man in Japan, master of all that the world contrived to carry off the island, Herv Joncour attempted to explain who he was. He did so in his own tongue, speaking slowly, not entirely certain whether Hara Kei was able to understand. By instinct he abandoned all caution, and recounted in simple words the entire truth, inventing nothing, omitting nothing. Small details and crucial events he laid out before him in the same flat monotone and with minimal gestures, as though rehearsing the joyless, neutral, hypnotic cadences of one reading a list of objects that have survived a fire.』
②『 Hara Kei listened, not a flicker of expression disturbing his features. He fixed his gaze on Herv Joncour’s lips as though upon the last lines of a letter of farewell. All was so silent and motionless in the room that what next occurred, though nothing in itself, seemed quite momentous.
opened her eyes.』
③『Herv Joncour continued talking but instinctively lowered his eyes to her and what he saw, as he continued talking, was that his eyesdid not have an oriental slant, and that they were fastened upon himwith a disconcerting intensity: as though this is what they had been doing from the start, from beneath lowered lids. Herv Joncour turned his eyes elsewhere, as indifferently as he was able, and tried to pursue his narrative without betraying the smallest alteration in his voice. He broke off only when his eyes lit upon the tea cup placed before him on the floor. He picked it up in one hand, carried it to his lips, drank slowly. Then he resumed his narrative as he set the cup down before him once more.』