Rain lashed at my face, tearing the very skin from my bones, or so it felt. The waves I was swimming through rose high above my head, threatening to drown me. But I made it to the rocks, I was a good swimmer, strong. Slipping on the rocks, I sustained a deep cut to my arm. The stinging did not bother me anymore, I was used to it.
Jack,my three legged whippet was barking half at me, half at the thunder roaring outside as I came in.
"Down boy." I hushed him and staggered into the front room. Candles cast my collected worthless treasures into golden shadow. Jack whined impatiently as I rummaged in a box, finally pulling out a strip of cloth. One handed, I wound the material around the wound and tucked the end in. It would not get infected, it never did.
I stuck a bashed in kettle full of water over the fire and gutted three fish. Jack had his two raw. I had mine cooked.
I ate in silence, my only company the roaring fire and the howl of the wind. My long labored over shutters banged open and shut in the gale.
"It's no good, Jack. I'll have to tie 'em down." I said, gulping the last of my fish down.
Donning my raincoat made out of an old black tarpaulin, I wrenched open the door. Assaulting rain came at me from all directions, obscuring my vision and restricting my movements. Shielding my eyes with one arm, I staggered round to the windows. Each shutter required heaving my whole weight against them to tie them to the walls with string and steel hooks I had hammered in there long ago.
Having achieved my goal, I leapt back inside. Jack helped lick me clean as I toweled my hair dry. My hair was a lot longer than other men of my age, unrespectably so, or that was what they thought anyway.
One of the many tattered books that were piled around the front room found its way into my hand, so I sat down and opened it. I did not take note of the words. I could not read or write. It was just something to do. Another peal of thunder crashed and Jack, yelping, jumped onto my lap.
"Jack!" I scolded but ruffled his ears. He just looked up at me with trusting eyes, his tongue lolling out stupidly.
"Bedtime?" I asked. He barked excitedly.
Jack said it was bedtime, so it was.