That’s Bossy’s grandfather in the center. He’s 5-year-old Walt, and this was the year he went to live with his grandparents. He doesn’t know it yet, but growing up in this household is the best thing that could ever happen to him. As his elbow indicates, this is mostly due to his grandfather Adrian on the left, the Chief of Police. Adrian is interesting, gregarious, and loves his grandson with his whole heart. His grandmother Hannah is on the right. She’s nurturing but a little more serious, and troubled over her son’s domestic situation. She’s also a loner.
Over the next decade Adrian will teach young Walt how to play marching band paradiddles on a dishpan using ebony sticks as hard as iron. And pointing to the family’s large oil painting representing his drowned brother’s schooner, Adrian will explain the significance of the boat’s rigging and sails until young Walt can sketch these intricate details of a tall ship from memory. And Adrian will use his police department influence to get Walt in—and out—of plenty