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SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN



SCHOOLBOY DAYS

IN JAPAN



BY



ANDRE LAURIE



TRANSLATED BY LAURA E. KENDALL




Ellustratrti



BOSTON
ESTES AND LAURIAT

PUBLISHERS



CARPENTJCR

Copyright, 1895,
BY ESTES AND LAURIAT.



Typography and Printing by

C. H. Simonds 6* Co.
Electrotyping by Geo. C. Scott & Sons-
Boston, U. S. A.



CONTENTS.



CHAPTER PAGE

I. THE DAIMIO'S CASTLE 9

II. A GENERAL BATH 21

III. M. DUPLAY AND HIS FAMILY 35

IV. Two RIVAL QUEENS OF JAPANESE SOCIETY ... 46

V. THE DAIMIO'S REVELATIONS 58

VI. INCREASING DISCONTENT 74

VII. INOYA'S FLIGHT 85

VIII. A NEW FRIEND 97

IX. IN TOKIO 107

X. THE IMPERIAL UNIVERSITY 118

XI. OBJECT-LESSONS . . 131

XII. A BIT OF HISTORY 141

XIII. THE BEGINNING OF INOYA'S SCHOLASTIC CAREER . 151

XIV. VARIED AVOCATIONS 166

XV. SHAKESPEARE REAPPEARS 178

XVI. A CHILDREN'S PARTY 189

XVII. A Music -LESSON 204

XVIII. THWARTED! , . , . 216

XIX. THE MIKADO'S VISIT 225

XX. THE FALL OF THE CHIRO 237

XXI. A PRISONER . 244

XXII. THE LAST HARA-KIRI CONCLUSION 258



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.



Frontispiece.

PAGE

HEAD -PIECE TO CHAPTER 1 9

ALICE INSTANTLY EXPERIENCED A SENSATION OF RELIEF . . 13
MARUSAKI POINTED TO A TINY GARDEN AS FANTASTIC AS IT

WAS CHARMING 29

MME. DUPLAY HAD BECOME QUITE RECONCILED TO HER NEW

EQUIPAGE 43

MME. YARITOMO INTRODUCING HER FRIENDS 47

DAILI-RICHITA'S SOMBRE VISAGE RELAXED INTO A SMILE . 61

SHAKESPEARE DREW OUT His NOTE-BOOK 79

INOYA DID NOT EVEN THINK TO DRAW His LINE OUT OF

THE WATER 87

THE Two TRAVELLERS REACHED A SMALL VILLAGE ... 101

"AND THAT Is FUJI, THE SACRED MOUNTAIN!" .... 115
THESE STUDENTS WERE OF ALL AGES AND CONDITIONS IN

LIFE 127

THE MOVEMENT COMES SIMULTANEOUSLY FROM THE SHOUL-
DER, ELBOW AND WRIST 137

A TERRIBLE CIVIL WAR BROKE OUT 145

HE BEGAN TO DRAW A BIG DEMON 159

THE NIPON BASHI, THE FAMOUS BRIDGE, WHICH Is CON-
SIDERED THE CENTRE OF THE EMPIRE 169

THE CARE BESTOWED UPON THE SILK-WORM 181

THEATRE STREET 195



Vlll LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

PAGE
WITH AN IMPERIOUS GESTURE HE MOTIONED HIM TO THE

DOOR 213

"SURRENDER THE KEYS OF YOUR CASTLE!" 221

THE IDEA OF SEVERING A ROSE FROM ITS STEM, OR OF
STRIPPING IT OF ITS LEAVES, NEVER EVEN OCCURS TO

THEM 227

THE DAIMIO STILL HELD His ANTAGONISTS AT BAY . . . 239

"LEAVE US FOR A LITTLE WHILE, CHILDREN." 251

"I CONDEMN You TO LIVE," ADDED THE MIKADO .... 265

TAIL-PIECE TO CHAPTER XXII 270




SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN.



CHAPTER I.



THE DAIMIOS CASTLE.

"T""\O come on, Shakespeare ! If you persist in lagging
1 J behind and pulling on the rope in this manner,
your weight will send your heels over your head pres-
ently ! "

This warning seemed by no means superfluous. The
party was ascending Mt. Ravacha, one of the highest
peaks in the northern part of Nippon, the principal island
of the Empire of the Rising Sun, or, in other words, of
Japan.

The organizer of the expedition, M. Duplay, a French
savant, noted for his extended travels through Asia, his



10 SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN.

geographical and geological researches generally, and his
treatise upon the Oriental languages, had consented to
take with him not only his son, Gerard, and his daughter,
Alice, but a Japanese youth, the son of a prominent Tokio
magistrate, who, being an ardent admirer of everything
European, had burdened his offspring with the ambitious
and high-sounding name of Shakespeare, a cognomen
doubly unfortunate in the present instance, inasmuch as
it is pronounced even more incorrectly in Japan where
people say Chexspile than in Paris, where they call it
Chexspire.

The region was wild and almost uninhabited, it being
far removed from the railroads, which have increased with
marvellous rapidity of late years in other parts of the
kingdom; but Alice and Gerard, accustomed from their
earliest childhood to accompany their father on his long
tramps, and even on his mountaineering expeditions,
found the ascent neither difficult nor arduous. Such was
not the case, however, with the young Japanese, who
seemed to have engaged in the undertaking without duly
considering the consequences. He appeared, too, quite
as timid as he was awkward, for he paused at the slightest
obstacle. Before beginning the ascent, M. Duplay had
taken the precaution to fasten securely around his own
body a long, strong rope, which was attached to the belts
of the three children, and of his valet, Omar, and, lastly,
to that of the native guide who preceded them. But this
precaution, though of considerable service to the more
experienced tourists, proved a positive source of danger
to a laggard like Shakespeare, inasmuch as the rope was
likely to throw him down at any moment by reason of his
hesitating movements and sudden pauses.

The same danger threatened the entire chain of human



THE DAIMIO'S CASTLE. II

beings of which he formed a part, and which was neces-
sarily affected by the movements of each of its members,
and M. Duplay began to regret not having left our young
and inexperienced friend, Shakespeare Yaritomo, in Tokio,
under the eye of his doting parents.

The catastrophe he had apprehended came at last.
Forgetting entirely the warning he had so recently
addressed to his rear-guard, and deeply engaged in an
examination of some volcanic rocks that strewed the path,
he paused to break off a small piece of one with his steel
hammer, and deposit it in his box of specimens, when a
sudden jerk made the hammer fly from his hand, and
before he could realize what had happened, he found
himself, together with all the other members of the party,
hurled headlong down the steep bank that bordered the
path. Below this bank yawned a frightful precipice ; but,
fortunately, the abyss was overhung by huge azalia bushes
in full bloom, thus affording a support as trustworthy as
it was beautiful. One could cling to them indefinitely
without the slightest danger of falling, and all fear being
at an end, the situation became simply ludicrous.

Gerard broke the silence by a hearty peal of laughter.

"We look like a row of birds roasting on a spit ! " he
exclaimed, taking advantage of a clump of grass to locate
himself more comfortably.

" Is any one hurt ? " inquired M. Duplay, who had
risen, in his turn.

" I believe I've broken something ! " groaned Shakes-
peare, dolefully.

"His skull, perhaps, though dear knows it is thick
enough ! " muttered Omar, the valet, sotto voce.

11 Alice, my child, you do not speak ! " exclaimed M.
Duplay, suddenly springing toward his daughter, who



1 2 SCHOOLBOY DA YS IN JAPAN.

remained silent and motionless in the same position in
which she had fallen. She was pale, her eyes were
closed, and she seemed to have lost consciousness.

"Alice, my dearest!" cried M. Duplay, lifting the
girl's golden head tenderly; "don't you hear me? Are
you hurt, my darling ? Omar, untie this rope, I beg of
you. How unfortunate that I ever thought of using it !
Good ! her pulse is all right. See ! she is opening her
eyes now."

The Japanese guide had already taken one of the young
girl's hands.

"There's no great harm done," he said, in his native
tongue. " A few drops of sake will make the young lady
all right."

He handed M. Duplay a small flask containing some of
the brandy of the country, made from fermented rice, and
so powerful that it was only necessary to moisten the
girl's lips and temples with it to restore her to conscious-
ness, and enable her to smile upon her father.

Almost simultaneously a series of dismal moans and
groans diverted the attention of the party. These came
from Shakespeare, who, having recovered from the shock,
now felt desirous of receiving a little attention, as well as
a sip of sake. In the twinkling of an eye Omar satisfied
himself that the "big booby," as he irreverently styled
the lad, had broken no bones, so his lamentations passed
unheeded.

As for Alice, she was soon seated on a clump of grass,
entirely restored to consciousness ; but her left foot pained
her terribly, and, on examination, M. Duplay found the
ankle sprained, or at least the tendons on the inner side
badly strained.

The immediate effect of this discovery was a sudden




"ALICE INSTANTLY EXPERIENCED A SENSATION OF RELIEF.'



THE DAIMICTS CASTLE. 15

cessation of Shakespeare's howls; for, feeling himself to
blame for the accident, he dared not utter another word.

M. Duplay, deeply annoyed, and even a little alarmed,
set to work to bandage his daughter's foot with a
handkerchief soaked in brandy ; but fresh, cool water in
abundance, together with absolute and prolonged rest,
would be needed to effect a complete cure ; and how could
these be secured in this lonely and desolate region ?

" I am sure there is plenty of water down there in the
ravine, where the shrubbery looks so fresh and green,"
remarked the guide ; " but where we are to find a suitable
shelter for the young lady is more than I can tell."

" Let us begin by going in search of water," responded
M. Duplay, with the prompt decision of character that
never deserted him in critical moments.

As he spoke, he took his daughter in his arms, and,
preceded by the guide, directed his steps toward the
little valley below, the other members of the party follow-
ing in gloomy silence.

After fully a quarter of an hour of arduous effort, they
reached the goal, and M. Duplay, well-nigh exhausted,
deposited his precious burden in the shade of a clump of
trees. The guide was not mistaken in his supposition.
Trickling from a crevice in the rocks down upon a big
stone below, which had been hollowed out into a sort of
basin by the action of the water, was a cool and limpid
stream. Into the basin thus formed Alice plunged her
injured foot, and the sensation of relief was not only so
instantaneous, but so marked, that she began to laugh
and jest, so anxious was she to reassure her father.

Almost at the same instant, as if the girl's silvery
laugh had evoked the guardian spirit of the spring, the
bushes that surrounded it parted, and a wondering and
astonished face peeped out.



1 6 SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN.

The face alone was visible, but it was a remarkably
bright and winning visage, surrounded by a fringe of
short, black hair, with a shining white circle above, where
the hair had been shaved from the centre of the head, but
surmounted by a large tuft, formed from the hair on the
back and side, which was turned up and knotted with
string on the top of the cranium, in the old-fashioned
Japanese style. Black, velvety eyes, sparkling with
animation, but veiled by long curving lashes ; thin,
highly -arched brows, a pale -olive skin, a delicately -cut
straight nose, and thin lips, which disclosed teeth of
dazzling whiteness, all formed a singularly original and
piquant combination.

M. Duplay, thinking it quite likely he might obtain
some assistance from the new-comer, addressed him in
Japanese, whereupon the shrubbery opened still wider,
and a lad about twelve years of age, clad in a gay kimono,
or long robe, confined at the waist by a broad silk sash,
sprang out.

As soon as he had been informed of the situation of
affairs, he darted off without wasting any time in further
parley, returning a few moments afterwards, accompanied
by two men carrying a kago. This small basket-work
palanquin, suspended from a long pole borne upon the
shoulders of two men, was formerly the commonest mode
of conveyance in Japan, but its use is now confined almost
exclusively to mountainous districts.

Alice was placed in the kago with the utmost care, and
the little caravan started on its way, for the young
Japanese announced that he had found the two kago-
bearers in a neighbouring rice-field that belonged to his
father, a Daimio, named Dai'li-Richita, who would be
delighted to welcome the illustrious strangers.



THE DAIMIO'S CASTLE. \J

" If he could not be of service to you," remarked the
lad, as they proceeded, " I could not promise you a very
cordial reception, for my father is not fond of foreign-
ers, 'barbarians,' he calls them, but the minute you
ask his assistance, he will be only too glad to serve you."

There was no option in the matter, so M. Duplay
submitted himself to the guidance of Inoya, their new
acquaintance, who was evidently charmed with the ad-
venture.

It seemed to be impossible for him to scrutinize the
Europeans closely enough, or to sufficiently admire their
costumes, the like of which he had never seen before ;
and not suspecting, apparently, how much better his rich
brocade robe and broad silk sash became him than
Shakespeare's gaudy waistcoat and checked trousers
would have done, he gave free vent to his profound
admiration and his longing to be similarly attired. He
evinced, too, a strong desire to enter into conversation
with Gerard, and as the latter already spoke Japanese
fairly well, they were soon chatting quite familiarly.

Inoya very naturally made some inquiries in regard to
the party and the object of the expedition, and on learn-
ing that Alice was his new friend's sister, expressed his
astonishment that she alone wore mourning, and not her
father or brother.

"Mourning?" exclaimed Gerard. "Alice is not in
mourning."

" Then why does she wear a white dress ? " replied
Inoya. "White is the mourning colour."

Gerard explained to him that this was the case only in
Japan ; and Inoya, who was evidently very much inter-
ested in Alice, went into ecstasies over her golden hair.

" I thought when I first saw her that her head was



1 8 SCHOOLS O Y DA YS IN JAPAN.

covered with sunbeams," he remarked; "and even now I
can't believe that her hair is not spun gold."

Gerard, much amused by these comments, informed the
young Japanese that Alice was no more favoured in this
respect than thousands of other European damsels ; and
Inoya, in his surprise, relapsed into a sort of reverie, in
which Alice figured as one of those wonderful fairies with
which Japanese legends teem.

The kago and its escort kept in the middle of the
ravine for some time, following a narrow path bordered
by flowering shrubs, among them the camelia, which
flourishes luxuriantly throughout the entire kingdom;
then the path began to wind in and out upon one side of
a spur of the mountain, and the scenery became more and
more wild and picturesque every moment.

The bearers of the kago walked briskly on, apparently
almost unconscious of the slight burden supported on
their sturdy shoulders. M. Duplay walked by his daugh-
ter's side, while Gerard and the little Japanese, already
the best of friends, gambolled along the road as if they
found the distance too short for their energies. Omar,
Shakespeare and the native guide brought up the rear.

At a turn in the path, Inoya paused abruptly, and
extending his slender arm, draped in a full, hanging
sleeve, and pointing to a gloomy pile dimly visible some
distance above their heads, exclaimed,

" Look, there it is ! "

M. Duplay gazed in the direction indicated, and saw one
of those old feudal castles which are already becoming
rare in Japan, and of which he had encountered only a
few specimens in his extended travels. These are, or
rather were once, veritable strongholds, substantially built
of stone on carefully chosen sites, and so formidable in



THE DAIMIO'S CASTLE. 19

character that the Japanese Government, since the last
revolution, has had most of them levelled to the ground.

The one toward which little Inoya was guiding our
travellers stood upon a small eminence, surrounded by a
broad moat, like the castles of European barons in the
Middle Ages, and as they drew nearer, M. Duplay could
see that the massive walls of masonry which enclosed the
fosse were of the real Cyclopean type, that is to say, they
were composed of immense stones, smoothed only at the
corners, and laid without the aid of mortar; but he could
also see that the chiro was a ruin without roof or windows,
a mere pile of crumbling walls, within which he could
detect no sign of human occupancy.

He made some remark to this effect, whereupon Inoya
smiled ; but the expression of his face said so plainly that
it is not well to judge from appearances, that M. Duplay
did not insist.

The nearer he approached the castle, however, the
more strongly he became convinced of the correctness of
his first impressions ; and the little party had not only
reached the moat, but had walked some distance along
the edge of it, and until they reached the south side of
the castle, before he changed his mind, for not until then
did M. Duplay discover that the lower story, or rather the
basement of the chiro, might be inhabited, for two or
three windows that opened almost on a level with the
waters of the moat were adorned with boxes of flowering
plants.

A little further on, a broad plank served as a draw-
bridge across the moat, giving access to an old postern,
which opened in turn into a small vegetable garden, laid
out on ground which must once have been the inner
court-yard of the fortress. At last, after traversing this



20 SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN.

garden, one came to an arched doorway, which seemed to
lead by a rickety stairway to a vaulted casemate below.
The general appearance of the place was poverty-stricken
in the extreme, and the dilapidated condition of every-
thing most depressing.

Under the influence of this impression, M. Duplay
thought it advisable to stop Inoya as he was about to
enter the doorway, and say to him that they might per-
haps be able to find a place of shelter in some other
part of the ruin, and camp there, and thus avoid
inconveniencing the owner of the abode unnecessarily.

The lad lifted his head proudly. " Daili-Richita, my
father, would not permit any stranger to cross his thresh-
old, or establish himself under his roof, except as a
guest," he said, almost haughtily. " Daili-Richita's castle
is old and dilapidated, it is true, but, thanks be to our
gods, there is still room in it to shelter a host of
strangers."

And as he spoke, the young Japanese proudly led
the way down the stone stairway to the apartment below.



CHAPTER II.

A GENERAL BATH.

THE hall into which Inoya first conducted the party
was furnished with mediaeval simplicity, for it
consisted merely of four walls ; there was not even a
mat on the floor, and, in fact, absolutely nothing to
indicate that the place was even inhabited.

Inoya requested the travellers to wait there a moment,
and then vanished, like a ghost, through a sliding panel
in the wall. This gave M. Duplay an opportunity to
examine more attentively a room which had impressed
him as being utterly forlorn upon his first entrance, and
he perceived that the walls were covered with a lacquer-
work of almost priceless value. Upon a rich reddish-
brown background, superb designs, darkened and tar-
nished by time, wandered capriciously. The designs were
worked out in gold, silver, bronze, and some metal of a
greenish hue. Restored to their pristine splendour, these
panels would certainly have formed a decoration worthy
of the costliest palace.

After a few minutes the panel moved noiselessly back
again, and Inoya reappeared, preceding an elderly man of
lofty stature, whose long queue of iron-gray hair reached
nearly to his heels. His face, though proud and refined,
wore an expression of indomitable firmness ; and eyes that
glowed like coals of fire and seemed to read one's



2 2 SCHO OLE OY DAYS IN JA PA N.

very soul, gazed out from beneath heavy brows of inky
blackness.

This was Dai'li-Richita. In spite of the stringent law
against carrying weapons, he wore two sabres, according
to the ancient custom. A kimono, with immense sleeves,
hung in ample folds about his tall form ; and the richly-
wrought handles of his short swords glittered in the left
side of his broad silk sash. At his right side hung a
tiny pipe-case and tobacco-pouch. In short, there was
apparent in each and every detail of his costume a
scrupulous regard for the observance of all the ancient
customs of his country, and a profound abhorrence of
everything foreign.

M. Duplay stepped forward, and addressing him in
Japanese, gave a courteous explanation of the accident
which had led to this intrusion. Dai'li-Richita seemed
amazed, at first, to hear a European speak the Japanese
language with such purity. Up to that time he had not
supposed such a thing possible, and, ignorant that M.
Duplay had made Asiatic tongues the chief study of his
life, he deemed this knowledge almost supernatural. At
all events, it was evident that his national pride was
much gratified, and when the unexpected guest ceased
speaking, his host's countenance was illumined with a
smile that transformed it completely, and, laying his hand
lightly on his son's shorn head, he said in a clear, well-
modulated voice,

" Inoya did quite right to bring you here. He knows
that my home, though plain and humble, is entirely at the
disposal of those who need a shelter. Such as it is, I
beg this illustrious traveller to make use of it as long as
he may find it convenient and agreeable to do so, and
until his noble daughter has entirely recovered from her



A GENERAL BATH. 23

injuries. My daughter, Marusaki, will be only too happy
to have her for a companion. She will now give us some
tea, and afterwards conduct the honourable young lady to
an apartment where she can rest."

As he spoke, the Daimio stepped aside, and motioned
his guests to precede him into a smaller and more
cheerful apartment. A fine matting, so scrupulously
clean that one hesitated to set foot on it, covered the
tiled floor. The walls were of highly -polished white -
wood, and on one side of the room was a sort of alcove
containing a low platform. This alcove is dignified with
the name of " Toko-no-ma, "-which signifies, literally,
the "place of the bed." It is here the taste of the owner
generally displays itself, and from it one judges whether
or not he has profited by the lessons in decorative art
which form a part of every person's education in Japan.

In Dai'li-Richita's domicile the walls of this alcove
consisted of the most delicate though elaborate lacquer-
work, only the daintiest hues of the Japanese palette
having been employed in their ornamentation. Two tall,
white Satsuma vases, each containing a large spray of
cherry-blossoms, formed a most effective decoration, and
between the vases was the rack intended as a receptacle
for the Daimio's sabres when he wished to divest himself
of them.

M. Duplay had Alice in his arms, and Da'fli-Richita
conducted them at once to the platform, upon which M.
Duplay and his son and daughter seated themselves in
European fashion, while their host, with the utmost
gravity, squatted down upon his heels, and clapped his
hands.

A charming vision appeared in answer to the sum-
mons, a lovely girl, about sixteen _years of age, who looked



24 SCHOOLBOY DAYS IN JAPAN.

as if she might just have stepped off a screen or Japanese
vase. Her slender figure, supple as a reed, was grace-
fully draped in a gay robe of beautiful though fantastic
pattern, folded across the breast, thus leaving a consid-
erable portion of the neck bare, and confined at the waist
by a broad silk sash, wound several times around her
body, and then tied in an enormous bow behind.

The open corsage disclosed to view a number of folds
of silky crepe, overlapping one another, and shaded with
the most exquisite taste. The jet-black tresses of the
girl seemed too heavy for her small head, and her slender
throat drooped beneath their weight, like the stem of
a lily drenched with dew ; while her clear olive com-
plexion, arched almond-shaped eyes, and delicately-curved
scarlet lips, would have excited admiration anywhere. In
her hands, which were as transparent and delicate as the
famous porcelain of her native land, she held a lacquer-
tray, upon which stood exquisite cups, thin as egg-shells,
and filled with fragrant tea of a pale golden hue.

The Japanese are taught the art of making and serving
tea from infancy, and proficiency in this household duty
is considered a great accomplishment. It was evident
that the charming Marusaki possessed it in an eminent
degree, for never was better tea offered by more delicate
hands ; and M. Duplay's evident admiration, and the
deferential manner in which he thanked the young girl,
seemed to greatly please Dai'li-Richita, whose stern
countenance relaxed more and more.

"Your noble daughter must require rest," he said,
courteously. " Marusaki, conduct her to your apartment,


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