Tale of Genji - Akashi -

Topics: Love, Emperor, Heian period Pages: 2 (776 words) Published: March 5, 2008
Chapter 10: Akashi

In this chapter, Genji is 27 years old, and by the end of the chapter, he is well into his 28th year. Genji, being stuck in the middle of storms and typhoons, was exhausted. One night full of furious winds and rains, he falls asleep and has a visitor from the past. The old Emperor comes to him and advises him to leave immediately to find refuge. Soon after this dream, an unknown boat arrives on the shore of Suma, where Genji is currently residing. Realizing that his dream has come to life, he gets aboard the small boat and travels to the shores of Akashi.

When he arrived in Akashi, it reminded him of Kyoto, where he used to live. He enjoyed his new life in Akashi very much because of the conversations that took place with the Old Monk. These were accompanied by the beautiful sounds of the Koto, an instrument commonly played in Heian Japan. Genji discovers that the Old Monk has a daughter, Akashi, who knows how to play the Koto very well. He hears that her skill is parallel to her beauty, but still feeling obligated towards Murasaki, he hesitates. Genji and Akashi begin to exchange letters of poetry. Akashi does not have the same level of social skills that Genji does, however, she does have qualities he appreciates in women. She is at first resistant and uninterested in Genji's underlying intentions, but begins to be captivated by his charm.

Being from a time when there were no restrictions on how many women a man could marry, he could not simply ignore the desires and affections that he began to feel for Akashi. However, still in love with Murasaki, he notifies her of the newest woman he is infatuated with. Then, during the night of the 13th of the third month, he finally decides to go to Akashi's house. As he approaches, he hears the harmonious sound coming from the Koto. The beautiful song only further provokes his interest in her, although he has yet to see her face. No longer able to contain himself, he visits Lady Akashi...
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