Friendships Books

In the short stories, "Separate Ways," by Higuchi Ichiyo, and "Uncanny

Stories from the Scholarís Studio," by SongLing, the two pieces both
demonstrate the limits, high and low, of friendship. Mrs. Chu and Mrs. Heng have
a loving friendship, but not being able to trust is their downfall. Okyo and

Kichizo also have a very loving and caring friendship, but money and riches
overpowers their friendship in the end. Mrs. Chu, and Mrs. Heng, in "Uncanny

Stories..." show a most admirable fulfilling friendship. Mrs. Chu was driven
into the arms of a friend, after feeling deprived of her husband who spent most
his days with his concubine. Mrs. Chu took a liking to Mrs. Heng, a neighbor.

Mrs. Heng has an experience similar to that of Mr. Chu with her husbandís
concubine, although the Hengís never showed any signs of quarrels or discord
in their household. This struck Mrs. Chu with an interest, because she wanted to
know how her relationship with her husband could be brought back to a good
situation. As the weeks and months passed by, the time the two women spent
together increased. Mrs. Heng would give good advice as to how Mrs. Chu should
approach her situation, and what she should do. Mrs. Chu followed all the
orders, and as time passed, everything seemed to be working out as planned. Mrs.

Chu regained the love and affection that she so badly wanted, and she gave all
the thanks to Mrs. Heng. As the years passed, the two remained intimate friends.

In contrast to the admirable friendship the two ladies portrayed, I also believe
their friendship has low limits. The whole time Mrs. Chu and Mrs. Heng were
intimate friends, Mrs. Heng had a secret hidden. "We to like each other as
much as if we had one body...Now however we must part, so I may dare to tell you
the truth. You see, I am a fox spirit...." To me friendship is based on love,
and most of all trust. Mrs. Chu and Mrs. Heng display the loving part of their
friendship, but as for the trusting part, it is obvious their friendship lacks
in that area. After all the years that passed, and everything the two ladies had
gone through, Mrs. Heng didnít tell Mrs. Chu that she was a fox spirit until
the day she had to leave. Mrs. Chu felt very hurt and betrayed when she found
out this news, "Mrs. Chu gripped her hand, and took her leave sobbing." The
whole time Mrs. Chu thought their friendship was true, it was all based on a
lie. Just imagine the pain Mrs. Chu had to go through after Mrs. Heng left, her
intimate friend gone for good. If Mrs. Heng was a good friend in actuality, she
would have told Mrs. Chu from the begging that she was a fox spirit, to save

Mrs. Chu all the hurt and pain. "Separate Ways" is another short story that
demonstrates the limits, high and low, of a friendship. Okyo is a woman in her
twenties who supports herself by sewing. Kichizo is a young boy of sixteen, who
has no family, and works as an apprentice at an umbrella shop. Kichizo is a very
lonely boy, who repeatedly gets taunted day in and day out. Okyo takes a liking
to him, and after time passes, the two become very close. Okyo always lets

Kichizo into her house if he needs to talk, no matter what time of day or night
it is. If he is feeling low, she will give him words of wisdom that always makes
him feel better. When Kichizo has not come to visit all day she says, "You
havenít come to visit me all day. Did something happen? Iíve been worried
about you." The two are so close; Kichizo loves and cherishes Okyo just as if
she was his own sister. Theses are the qualities that display the highest limits
a friendship can achieve. Despite all the high achievements the two have in
friendship, Okyo does something to Kichizo that demonstrates the lowest limits a
friendship can achieve, she leaves him. Without Okyo, Kichizo has nothing. He
looks up to her with a greatness that nobody else could. Even with Okyo knowing
this, she decides that money and riches are the most important thing to her.

"Iím sick off all this washing and sewing...Iím tired of these drab
clothes. Iíd like to wear a crepe kimono, even if it is tainted." Okyo feels
no grief