Ethan huddled in the corner of his room refusing to open his eyes despite the certainty of utter blackness surrounding him. He focused hard on the one thought that seemed to allow him to maintain his sanity. The beginning. He knew he had to find it. It was the only chance he had of understanding what was happening to him.
He kept coming back to that rainy day. When was it? A week ago? Two weeks? A sense of time was one of the first things to go as his condition progressed. At any rate, that was when it had started. The question was, what had made it start?
The feel of raindrops on his skin was still with him. Indeed, everything he had seen and heard since that day was still with him. His mind was eroding. There could be no doubt about it. He had stood at the window that morning. That last innocent, carefree morning when it had begun.
He stood there sipping his tea and looking at the blackened sky. Thunderheads so purple and pregnant with moisture, looking bruised and brooding. Then the rain had started. Scattered droplets at first, then a steady downpour. At first he thought his arm was itching. Then the sensation became more intense and persistent until the realization dawned that he what he was feeling was the rain on his skin.
His mind rejected the notion at first. He was indoors; how could he be feeling the rain? The longer he had stood there the stronger the sensation became. He had turned away from the window rubbing his arm; then the other arm had started in. Soon after his entire body felt as it if were being pelted by heavy raindrops. He had retreated to the kitchen not knowing what else to do but remove himself from the sight of the rain. He became aware of the sound of rain on the roof and his body continued to feel the drops. He became scared. The more he tried to calm down the worse the situation got.
It began to drive him mad. In a panic he had ran outside into the driving rain and stood with this arms cast skyward and his head thrown back. It had helped. The unease drained from his mind and the sensation in his body was one with the actual raindrops on his skin. He knew the neighbours must be wondering what he was doing but he didn’t care.
Soon though the rain let up and he no choice to go inside and get out of his wet clothes. The sensation of the raindrops remained with him and he stood shivering and naked, wondering what to do. He couldn’t drive the fear from his mind. It felt like his body had been taken over by a malevolent force. He had opted to take a hot shower. It proved to help, the feel of the water hitting his skin making sense of the sensation that stayed with him.
When the hot water ran out he had given up the shower and dried himself and put clothes on but the feeling of rain stayed with him. He did his best to ignore it, to not let it upset him but as the day progressed and his condition did not change he had called the doctor and told him what was going on. He was told to come in right away.
An examination and blood work provided no clue to what was happening. The doctor had suggested a visit to a psychologist but Ethan would have none of it. He knew it wasn’t in his mind. Little did he know it was only the beginning.
Part 2 Tomorrow