Arthur Flynn was huddled by the fire as the storm roared, coming down on The Forest in huge torrents of wind and rain.
As I predicted, he thought with a weary sigh. No one was there to witness his premonition of the storm. No one was ever there. Not since the Fire of the Pines. Not since his beautiful wife and children were claimed by the treacherous Elements. Taken from him.
Just like that. Widower at thirty-two.
He had a face of a man past his years. The heart of a man weary of the spiral of life. And the mind of a man with a sight into matters others could only guess at.
Sitting in the warm glow of his fireside, he still had the feelings...
The storm had hit. That was certain. Yet his senses told him something more was coming. Something so completely earth-altering that it couldn't take shape or form in his mind.
And that was when there was a crash - much louder than the reigning thunder. Flynn feared a tree had been toppled by the ferocious wind, possibly injuring somebody - or worse.
As he opened the door of his cottage to the howling black night, he was thrust back - but he held the doorframe firmly. Behind him, the wind tore plates from the cupboards, smashing them on the floor, dragged the curtains from the windows - flying like a gaggle of invisible vandals through his living room.
But before him... Before him was a much more compelling sight.
Squinting, Flynn made out a pair of tiny eyes on his doorstep. His heart immediately ached. He reached quite instinctively towards the baby, scooped it into his arms and held it tight as he gazed further into the darkness.
"HELLO?" He roared with the strongest voice he could muster, feeling the baby's tiny heartbeat racing closely to his own. He stumbled forward against the wretched wind. "Who are you..?"
His eyes fell to the baby in his arms. Her face was scrunched in distress at the wind and rain that whipped at her face.
Glancing around one last time for his mysterious visitor, Flynn retreated to his thrashed, windswept - however, warm and dry - cottage.