The narrator used to love the rain, but then the boy attacked, beat, and robbed her in the rain. Ten years later, she’s at a bus stop, watching bus after bus pass by. She doesn’t want to risk getting caught in the rain, even for a little while. She sees a little girl waiting in the corner of the bus stop.
Distilling the plot into everyday language makes it sound absurd. It is anything but. The poetry of the language is rich and deep. Yes, it’s rain, but perhaps it’s something more. Something that once brought joy to someone can drain the same person after trauma. It can be something as commonplace as rain.
The strength of the story is in its use of language and metaphor. While there isn’t a lot of action, there is transformation. The narrator comes to a realization about herself and the world.
I can’t say I enjoyed this sad little story, but I certainly admired it.
Accord to the blurb, author M.K. Hutchins regularly draws on her background in archaeology when writing fiction. She’s the author of the YA fantasy novels The Redwood Palace and Drift, and she’s written over thirty short stories, appearing in Podcastle, Analog, and elsewhere. She lives in Utah with her husband and four children. Find her at mkhutchins.com.
The story can be read here.
Title: “This is How the Rain Falls”
Author: M.K. Hutchins
First published: Daily Science Fiction, May 18, 2020