Spring to Summer

I was running out of ways to help my Mother and get through to Haruka. The former�s health and mental condition saw no sign of improving anytime soon and the latter still seemed to hate my guts with each passing day. Juriko sat proud and mockingly in the middle while not being much help to me with her laughter and teasing. The three of them were starting to run my sanity downhill. I was going out of my little eleven-year-old mind by that point. Why did women have to be difficult? I decided it was time to turn to some back-up.

�They just are,� Doctor Akai told me after I asked him in May before he went home for the day.

�But why?� I asked. He shrugged.

�If the gods had intended us to know, we would have figured it out a long time ago,� the doctor replied. �Good day.� He picked up his empty bottle of sake and headed down the road. I blinked as I watched him walk away.

�Okay�� I mumbled as I waved goodbye. There were times when the good doctor misses the mark completely. That was one of them, I hate to say. I came to ask him for help and he didn�t have the answer that would help me fix two-thirds of my female problems. I sighed and dropped my shoulders as I took a seat on the grass. My attention turned back to the sky. Now what?

The idea I had been putting off came to me as the inevitable at this point. I didn�t really want to do this, but what else could I do? If I couldn�t get through to Haruka or figure her and Juriko out, then I could at least help my Mother out of her silent spell. I doubted it will do any good, but I didn�t have anything going on for me. I sighed and rolled my eyes.

Well, I might as well suck it up and give it a shot, I thought. But should I tell her now or surprise her with the news? I mulled that question over in my head for a before exhaling what was left of my rationalization that I had at eleven years old. I decided to wait until Mother was relatively in the right state of mind again. Emphasis on the word, relatively. I sighed as I rolled my shoulders around. I got up and went inside the house for dinner.

On June first, 1946, I began my training to become a Shinto priest.