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March 13, 2014
It's been an interesting week for me. The last time I wrote in this book, I was excited to see my father come home from the war. Not too long after I wrote that, another man came to our house, telling us that he's dead. Someone killed him a few days before the battle ended, but no one could tell us what happened until it was over. I've been trying to avoid writing in here, but I get the feeling that dad would be happy if I continued. Maybe he never got the chance to read what I wrote, but it's nice to have some things to look back on. Ever since we received the news, mom has been an emotional wreck. Just yesterday, she threw her dinner plate at Wakato, barely missing him, and I had to be the one to clean the shattered pieces up. As for Wakato, he doesn't seem to be that upset. Maybe it's just a guy thing. Me? I miss dad so much. I wish he wasn't killed. I want to see him more now than ever...but I can't. He's gone forever. Stupid battle. Stupid Gaoling. Stupid everyone that lives in that rich city! If you would have just let us have the rights we deserved, my dad wouldn't be dead!
I close my book quickly, curling myself up into a little ball and quietly sob to myself. Why did I go back to this book today? All it's doing is bringing me internal pain that'll never cease to stop hurting.
Suddenly, my weak door barely holding by the nails opens. Mother barges in my room. Her long, black hair is in a ponytail, but it looks very messy, as if she just got out of bed. She was wearing a new dress that was gifted to her from a friend. It's light green and goes all the way down to her ankles. Her brown boots, which are actually black behind all the dry mud, are starting to show more of its real color. She stomps over to me, and rolls me over so she can face me. She looks like she wants to murder someone.
"WHY ARE YOU CRYING!" Mother asks angrily at me.
"I-I was just thinking about dad again," I explain.
Mother cocks her head at me. It was like her neck had a twitch. "Well, you'll have plenty of time to think about him later! Get dressed! We're going to be late for his funeral!"
Mother storms off out of my room, leaving behind an uneasy feeling in the air. The funeral. I completely forgot it was today. I leave my nice, warm animal pelts and go to my clothing area, picking out the dress mother bought me years ago. She told me I was only allowed to wear it for special occasions. Maybe this day isn't what I'd call special, but it might make her happier to see me wearing it. It's dark green - she said it matches the color of my eyes perfectly. I change out of my regular clothes and put my dress on, feeling strangely fancy. I don't live like the people in Gaoling, and I probably never will, but this dress...it cost so much out of my mom. I feel like an upper class person wearing this. I've worn this dress a few times before, but this is the first time I've been overcome with the feeling of.......wealth.
I grab my comb, made out of a sabertooth lions teeth, and let it go through my silky, black hair. Then, I put on my dark brown boots, which are naturally brown unlike my mothers. I walk out of my room silently and over to my mom who's looking out the window. I place my hand on her shoulder. She looks over to me, startled at first, and then frowns, and slaps my hand away.
"Get your hand off of me!" she yells, staring at me as if she wants to strangle me.
"Sorry...I just thought I'd-"
"What? Just thought you'd what?" she asks loudly as she stands up, our noses almost touching. "Comfort me? Well guess what, Naomi? I DON'T NEED YOU TO COMFORT ME!"
Her yelling booms and echoes off the walls of our house. It was so powerful, it made the trinkets on the dining table shake. I want to speak out, but mother might yell again. She might even hurt me. Before father's death, I would have never thought about mother ever doing something like that to me, Wakato, or anyone. Mother has always been the sweetest soul in town. She's always been there for someone when they've needed her. She's become so furious at just about anything that breathes since father died. I can see the veins on her forehead throb as she thinks to herself. She immediately stands back up, and rushes down the hall.
"WAKATO! WHAT IS TAKING YOU SO LONG? IF WE'RE LATE TO YOUR FATHER'S FUNERAL, YOU'RE GONNA WISH YOU COULD BE DEAD WITH HIM!"
My eyes open widely. What's happening to mother? She's never spoken to Wakato or me like that. I'm almost too scared to even speak to mother right now.
Rushing down the hall comes Wakato, who is dressed in a green shirt and matching pants. His black, fluffy hair is combed back. Mother, is following right behind him and her face is boiling red.
"Get moving! Out the door with the two of you!"
I immediately stand up, and fast walk my way out, right behind Wakato. Mother walks right beside us the entire time from our home to where the funeral will be held. None of us say a word to each other. The funeral is being held outside on top of a grassy hill. Not that many people know us, so there's not so many people here. Mom's best friend, Madoka is already here, a tear going down her face as we approach her.
"Oh, Urara. You look so beautiful today. I'm so sorry for your loss. Takashi was a wonderful man," Madoka says as she hugs mom.
It surprises me that mother actually hugs Madoka back instead of pushing her away. I guess she's not upset with everyone.
I look down the hill, noticing someone running up. It's my friend, Eriko! Before she fully makes it to the top of the hill, I run over to her and hug her as tight as I can.
"Naomi...you're....squeezing...too...tight...." Eriko says weakly.
I let go of her, feeling kinda embarrassed. "Sorry," I reply rubbing my neck with my hand. "It's just been awhile since we've seen each other."
"I know. Too bad it's for a rather delicate occasion. Speaking of which, I'm sorry about what happened to your father."
No it's not. It'll never be okay that he's gone. I just don't want Eriko to feel bad.
A few other people show up. There are men that father fought with in the war, along with some other friends of mom and Wakato. None of my other friends could make it. They always seem to have something else to do. Now that everyone has arrived, mother begins the funeral with telling us all to be silent. Not a word is spoken. Not a sound is heard. The only thing I can sense is the feeling of a gentle breeze blowing against my body, causing my ponytail to move to the right. When the wind stops blowing, a crack of thunder disrupts the silence between everyone here and drops of rain begin the fall. I open my eyes to the sight of my mother looking up at the sky, her eyes mimicking the clouds, and tears flow down her cheeks. Her face goes from sad to angry, her eyebrows narrowing downward.
"Why, universe?" She asks at the sky. "Why did you take my sweet Takashi away? He was the best thing that ever happened to me! The love of my life! He was supposed to return home after the war! Why is he dead?"
Mother falls to her knees, covering her face with her hands as she sobs violently. The rain starts to pour down faster and harder. More roars of thunder boom in the sky, and even some flashes of lightning show in between the dark gray clouds. With a slight hesitation, I walk over to mother, but keep a distance behind her.
"Mom, please. It's raining. We need to go back home," I explain.
Mother doesn't listen. She just continues to cry in her own world.
"Mom?...we need to go-"
Mother stands up, and looks at me painfully. "I KNOW WE NEED TO GO BACK!" She screams as she grabs onto my wrist tightly. I'd fight the grip, but it wouldn't be worth it. She's practically dragging me along as she grabs a hold of Wakato's wrist and marches us all the way back home. She pushes us back inside, and slams the door, all of us soaking wet from the thunderstorm.
"CHANGE INTO YOUR OTHER CLOTHES!" She demands.
Wakato and I silently walk into our rooms. I change back into my normal clothes, and sit back down on my sabertooth lion pelt. Something has changed in mother since father's death. The loving mother I once knew and loved has left. I don't even know who she is anymore. I feel like I haven't just lost dad. I've lost my mother too. There's nothing me or Wakato can do to change her back to the way she was. She's too much for us.
It's clear to me now that Wakato and I have nothing to live for in Chin Village.
We need to leave.
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