There was a time I was fascinated by the vengeance system.
I thought it was the ultimate in impartiality.
But one day, I came to my senses.
Would taking vengeance really give you a sense of exhilaration and accomplishment?
It wouldn’t bring your loved one back to life.
The anger and grief of having a loved one taken from you unexpectedly and unfairly.
So I thought about what you would need to get over your sense of loss.
How about words of remorse from the perpetrator?
I don’t know.
I started writing this book without finding an answer.
While I was writing, 3/11 happened.
My workplace in Tokyo was significantly shaken up.
I was scared and panicking, but I had to protect my manuscript. I desperately grabbed my USB flash drive that had a copy saved on it.
The shaking stopped. I turned on the TV and was met with unthinkable sights and news.
I felt crushed by a sense of powerlessness at not being able to do anything and an overwhelming sense of despair.
I was unable to write for quite some time.
Those days of confusion were a mixture of sadness, anger and regret as I witnessed the plight of the disaster victims on TV.
Some of those people had lost family members.
They would talk about their families in faltering voices.
Listening to those stories, something dawned on me very clearly.
Grief does not abate.
Those people will go on living each day, carrying their grief with them.
That is what it is to be living.
They have to believe that in going on living, one day a day will come when they will laugh again.
I started writing again, with the prayer that one day there will be “hope”.
This story went in a different direction from what I had expected when I started writing it.
I think I wanted people to find that tiny flicker of light.