The passing of Taro's grandmother came as no surprise to anyone in the family. Taro didn't even see her during the final days as she had long since stopped recognizing anyone. Everything that had happened for his grandpa's funeral was repeating again.
Taro sat first in the chapel, then rode in the familiar limousine to the cemetery, then stood around the family trying to be quiet as had been asked of him.
Death had been explained in so many ways so far. He'd been told by some that his grandmother was going on a journey, that things would be bright and at the end of that journey she'd see grandpa again. He'd been told his grandmother is going to become an angel and watch over him. He'd been told that she's going to go to heaven and spend all her days playing golf with loved ones who went before her. He'd been told that she's going to be put in charge of heaven's bakery. If all of these things were true, and they must be because adults know these things, then it sounded to Taro like heaven was a really busy place.
Again, even though all the adults said such nice things about heaven and kept insisting to Taro that he didn't need to be sad, they all began to cry as the coffin was lowered in the plot next to his grandpa.
Taro held onto Ky's hand, "Why are dey so sad but dey keep telling us to be happy?"
Ky gripped Taro's hand tighter, "Adults get sad when they don't know something or are worried they might be wrong."
Taro looked oddly at Ky. It seemed crazy to even think that adults might not know something.
As everyone left the cemetery, Taro's dad came up and pulled both Taro and Ky into a hug. He was definitely upset and had been crying quietly, "I don't know what I would be doing right now if I didn't have you boys and your mother in my life. I don't say this often, but I love you both so much."
It was so odd for Taro to see his dad showing any emotion besides being angry or frustrated. He hugged his dad back and almost cried himself. It was confusing and Taro didn't like how confusing everything was being.
For the next week Taro's dad was quiet. He spent most of his time working on things either out in the yard or in his workshop. There was a huge area in the backyard that was fenced in to become a garden. The echoing sounds of hammers and table saws entered the house from the backyard all day.
After several days Taro's mom decided it was time to try dragging her husband back inside from his workshop. Taro and Ky watched from the backdoor as she disappeared into the small shop on the other side of the yard.
Everything was quiet for a few minutes as they waited. From the yard voices started getting louder. The voices were starting to shout.
Ky grabbed Taro's hand and was starting to pull him away from the door when there was a loud bang and a scream. Startled by the sound, both Taro and Ky jumped and looked out the door again.
Taro's mom stepped out of the workshop and started limping quickly towards the house. His dad came chasing out behind her, "Flora, I am sorry, I didn't mean!"
Taro's mom put up a hand to quiet him, "It was an accident, I know, but you need space and that's what we're going to give you." She looked upset, and Taro's dad looked scared.
Once Taro's mom noticed the two boys at the door she pointed further into the house, "We're going to your Nana's."
Ky nodded and dragged Taro quickly to the front of the house as their mom grabbed her car keys and continued her limp march to ushering them out the front door.
"Flora!" Taro's dad tried shouting again from right behind them.
"We'll talk about this later," Taro's mother shut the door behind her.
As they walked away there was another loud bang from inside the house that made Taro jump. His mother shook her head and got both kids into the car and drove off without saying anything else.
Taro was feeling more confused than normal, "What happened?"
"I'll tell you later baby," Taro's mom sounded emotional, but the rest of the drive through town was silent.
Once they pulled into the large yard and the car was turned off, Taro's mom motioned towards the house, "Go let your Nana know we're here."
"Okay," Taro got out and ran towards the house. He knocked on the back door until his Nana answered.
His Nana always answered with a smile when she saw them visiting. Once she looked up and saw Taro's mother limping towards the door though, her expression sank, "Aye hija, que paso?"
Taro's mom tried speaking quickly and in Spanish, probably in hopes that the boys wouldn't understand her, "I'm okay, I got hit in the leg and it hurts."
Taro's Nana immediately started fussing over the wound on his mom's leg, "What hit you?"
"It's my fault," Taro's mom opened with, "I should have just left Jonny alone to whatever he was doing but I tried getting involved."
"Jonny hit you?" Taro's Nana looked shocked.
"No he didn't hit me," Taro's mom sighed, "I tried talking to him, he got angry and started throwing everything off his bench. He didn't mean to throw it at me he was just throwing things, and I got hit with the hammer."
Taro's Nana shook her head as she bandaged the wound up, "He lost his mama, he's just upset."
"I know mom," Taro's mom assured her, "I'll be okay, I just need to give him room for a while."