I step outside onto the sidewalk, an icy wind rushes against my cheek. I pull the coat tight around me, turn my face to the ground, and walk into the wind. The sound of leaves in the wind follows me as I make my way down the dark street, barren of all life, save for my own.
I heard the sound of the trees branches swaying in the wind, creaking with every powerful gust, threatening to snap at any moment. The wind hits me again, this time stopping me where I am with its cold fingers searching for my skin. The air becomes crisp and my lungs hurt to breathe. It’s too cold outside. I continue my walk, and turn the corner of the next block. Waiting for me is a darkness I cannot see into. No streetlights illuminate the path before me. The wind howls in my ear and threatens to freeze the air from my lungs. The skin that is exposed screams for warmth, for shelter from this bitter wind that follows me wherever I go.
I make my way forward, one staggering step at a time. The darkness swallowing me in its heaviness, shielding the light from entering to aid me in my journey. The rain begins to fall. Slowly at first, gentle and soothing. Then the rain falls harder, colder than it should be, actively pursuing me to fold under its strength. The rain falls onto my face, causing my skin to become numb to its touch, taunting me as it fades and returns, even stronger. The wind and the rain acting together to keep me from reaching my destination. My hair is soaked, water drips down my face, my teeth are chattering. My eyes water from the icy feel of the wind and my coat no longer protects me from the water that is falling upon it. I’m cold, I’m numb, and I’m losing my fight very quickly.
I turn another block. The wind pushes against me as I struggle to gain each step forward. The rain falls harder, blinding me from what lays ahead. I cross the bridge and turn left down an empty street. Tree limbs begin to fall from their owners in response to the winds call, snapping and breaking free and falling onto the path that I walk. I side step the first, step over the second, and the third falls right behind me barely missing my arm.
I jump out of the way and freeze, terrified of what hunts me. I begin to run, as fast as I can against the icy wind and the freezing rain. I run and run until I cannot breathe. I reach my destination, charge the door, and burst into a room filled with soft light and warmth. I remove my drenched coat and drop it to the floor. I remove my shoes and make for the warm carpet in front of the fireplace.
The fire is warm and inviting and soothing to my cold and sore muscles. The feel of the icy wind is fading. The rain that clings to my clothes and hair begins to disappear. My pursuers have left me, my journey is ended. I have escaped the bitter winter and retreated into the warmth that is my home. Tomorrow, I make the journey again. Another battle saved for another day.