Isner came out of the bathroom break the much fresher of the two, and reeled off three straight points on his serve, including one that finished with Mahut diving to the center of the court. Isner seems to have lightened up some, laughing and smiling with the crowd.
The new looseness is paying off, as Isner forces deuce. At deuce, Mahut pushes his second serve just long to give Isner his fourth match point, and his first in several hours.
But Mahut saved it with his 95th ace, straight up the "T."
The second deuce saw Isner sail a second serve return long, causing him to bite his collar and look to the darkening skies in anguish.
And on his advantage, Mahut hit yet another service winner to Isner's backhand side, giving him the game.
After the hold, Mahut immediately walked to chair umpire Mo Layani and asked him to postpone the match due to darkness. The tournament referee comes out to discuss the situation with the players, as the crowd chants "We want more!"
It is eventually decided to halt play, despite some clear objections from Isner.
And so with exactly ten hours in the books already, Isner and Mahut will continue their first round match into Day 4 of the tournament.
Just because today's story didn't have an ending doesn't mean that it's not one of the greatest in the history of sports.