"I heard that your
son is starting training with a real sword," the neighbor said,
chosing her words carefully.
"Yes," the lady of the house sighed. "His master said he's much more advanced than the others his age, and wanted to get him started as soon as possible.""So it is true. When I heard Mrs. Nishimura say it, I thought it was just gossip." She took a sip of her tea and contemplated whether or not her next sentence would be proper. "You know I only say this because I care for you and your family... but, even with his talent, isn't he too young to be doing this already?"
The mother smiled, but her eyes still showed worry. "That's what I said to my husband. I guess it's in a mother's nature to worry, but this is good for him. It's the boy's ambition to be a swordsman, and he's so talented... who am I to stand in the way of such a gift?"
The neighbor held her tongue. She'd spoken her piece already; to say any more would be rude.
"Besides," her hostess added after a brief lull in conversation, "He's no ordinary child, Makoto."