Most people enjoy the sound of rain; they find it calming.
I am not one of those people.
For some reason, the rain has never given me peace.
The sound of water, slow, steady and rhythmic, parades through my bedroom, making it pulsate, and I wake from a deep sleep, reaching my hands across the mattress—searching…
What I’m searching for, I have no idea… but my hands pause when they feel emptiness—nothing.
Just the coolness of the bedspread.
Just the solace of an empty spot.
I feel cold—inexplicably so, and when I turn over to face the window, I see a cloudy sky, scarlet curtains…
And no rain.
Not a single drop from the sky, at least as far as I can tell. The windows seem to be heavily fogged.
But maybe not…
I take a closer look.
A thin film is outstretched over the poorly framed glass, making my vision feel murky.
Grey light filters in through its thin layer, and at this point, I can’t even tell if the sun is shining.
But I can still hear the rain.
Not on the outside, no.
It’s inside somehow, trickling just beyond my bedroom wall.
I sit up straight, bracing my open palms on my bedroom pillows when it occurs to me that the pillows aren’t mine.
In fact, as I take closer look at the bed sheets, I slowly realize… I’ve awakened in a bed that isn’t even mine…
What the flying fuck…
I vault out of the bed, practically diving sideways, as if it were on fire.
A single tumble and my bare feet land on the cold ground near the edge of the bed, simultaneously pacing, taking in the remainder of the room with sluggish eyes and an unsettled mind.
I don’t recognize the silk robe caressing my shoulders. I’ve never before felt the floor rug beneath my feet.
Nothing is familiar. None of it.
Not the room. Not its two rust-colored doors. Definitely not the high ceilings, nor the darkened hardwood floors.
I seem to have gone asleep in one world and awakened in another.
Where the fuck am I, and how in the hell did I get here?
I walk over to the doors, but oddly they won’t open. I walk across the room to stand in front of the thick glass separating me from the world, and I realize that everything around me—the buildings, the people, the marketplace just outside…
I don’t recognize any of it.
And I’m all alone.
How did this happen?
Everything, everyone, appears to be moving in sync, in a motion that speaks of everyday life.
It seems like a normal goddamned day for the rest of the world… but not for me.
I am the oddity.
I press my forehead against the hazy glass, prepared to scream, and just when I start to… the rain that seems to pulsate in the room just stops.
The sound of heavy footsteps follows in its wake, matching the thundering of my now pumping heart—a heart that seems to have leapt between my ears, beating with a panicky pace.
I see the doorknobs turn and through one of the two closed doors, a man enters the room, naked from the waist up, a white towel in one hand and another wrapped near his navel.
And in that instant, my mind goes numb.
He is gorgeous beyond fucking belief.
Gold-green eyes peek beneath a darkly soaked head of hair, and he looks straight at me—his hazel irises expectant, one strong arm outstretched as he dries the wet mane that drips onto his naked shoulders.
Strong broad shoulders.
Shoulders that sit upon a body made of cream-colored stone.
The look in his eyes is intense, and he stares at me as if he is incapable of doing anything else.
I don’t know why… but it thrills me, sets my senses ablaze… and scares me half-to-fucking-death.