When the Rain Stops: a New Short Story by Bryan Washington
Brought to you by the so-fi daily podcast. Did you know thirty. Seven percent of americans would struggle to cover unexpected four hundred dollar expense. April is national financial literacy month. Which means it's time to expand your financial knowledge and that all starts with having the right information for facts analysis and updates related to markets and financial awareness. Listen to the so-fi daily podcast every weekday search for s-o-f-i wherever you get your podcasts. When the rain stops a new short story by. Brian washington by brian washington. We heard about the storm a week before the rains. Manny figure. they wouldn't be a problem. J. disagreed the news called it a minor inconvenience of flash flood at most but we'd learned not to lean too deep into forecast in the morning. Houston felt sticky are. He'll slapped across the floorboards. We plotted around the house. Yawning and stretching and tugging at our boxers went straight for the vegetable garden but jay took his time with breakfast. Stirring a pan of eggs. Slipping everything inside pieces of toast between mouthfuls of sandwich. He swore we'd ended up packing everything growing out back anyway. There wasn't really a point attending them now. Our states seen eleven straight years of record breaking hurricanes. Houston's caught like eight of them and even though the government calls it's cyclical locals. No better rain start earlier. wins only ever increase. If you're in the loop then you'll likely end up halfway underwater and if you've got cash then you're probably safe but if you actually had money then you'd already probably left still though we prepared. Boarded the cauliflower. Shed and pack the cucumbers that we could. Manny drove into town for water because jay hated the highway and i stooped beside him boxing and boarding the beans and the broccoli and the kohlrabi. A few hours later we hunched over the season spread. I asked jay if he thought this would be a big one nor the big one or just another one and j shrugged before he asked me. If it honestly mattered. but we'll manage. He said rubbing a turnip and this is when manny pulled into the driveway blasting his music yelling about the traffic on fifty nine north. I met jay and manny accidentally years back. I've gone out for a drink in montross before another storm cruising for sex before everything shut down and after i ended up following them home the rain started falling. And it just didn't stop for like nine days. The couple put me up for the night. One night became to a week later. I thought they'd kicked me out or the things might turn jealous and cold. But they didn't and they weren't manny and jay made space at their dinner. Table tossed me cushions on their sofa. I'd lean barefoot over there sink waddling naked from their bathroom to their bedroom and pack until one day. Eventually they felt this much of a part of my life is anything else. They been farming in a leave for nearly a decade. Manny's family owned a tortilla ria in the heights. Jay had fled at tech gig up in austin in bed with two of them. We fit together like matchsticks and manny snored loudly. So i buried my ears in jay's chest when the rain stops i said i'll go home and the two of them laughed. Good luck with that. Said manny really said jay. The forecast worsen the next few days. And i just sat out of the storm's way and then it's trajectory found us. The storm widened until it became a tropical threat and then a hurricane and then a deadly one the morning before it reached land houston stood square in the centre. So many join j. In me and the yard grumbling under his breath and some neighbors dropped by two congregating before the first clouds fell. Fernando leaned against the fence asking what we thought about the reins when julie passed by dropping off a jar of broth. She nj gossiped in korean. While manny and i fondled tomatoes mabel brought us a casserole plate which she traded for a set of jumper cables and letitia offered us extra batteries which we accepted gratefully eventually my son called out from the sidewalk asking if we had extra water and j mumbled about that under his breath but manny always made sure to spot their family and extra case. This was another thing that has changed back when i was a kid. Everyone in the city weathered the storms on their own. You made it through or you didn't rebuilt with what you could. But with storms only getting worse working together became a necessity. It was how you made it to the next storm and we didn't have to ask our neighbors for help. It was just something that we did that night. The wind picked up. Our house began to shiver and the sidewalk. Started to patter but it wasn't long before my son rang. The doorbell again holding tupperware full of warm to choi as a thank you before the kid could sprint back home. J. asked if he wanted to share it and the four of us stood in our doorway spooning bites from the plastic tin and grinning under the drizzle rain arrived gradually blanketing the block. then it simply didn't move cascading across the city. We heard the wind. We saw the water and it didn't rise or fall it simply never stopped. No one knew when it would in bed. The three of us huddled together whispering at some point are snores and the rain became indistinguishable. We'd eaten stewed pinto beans that evening tucked inside of the hallway half listening to the radio and flexing our toes against the rug. We all knew that living in the by was a contract. If you wanted to enjoy the city then you had to deal with its woes. Manny said we'd find a way through the worst of the storms to come and nj called it inevitable that we'd have to leave one day but i knew that either way the problem was if but when there would be no inbetween. Eventually there wouldn't even be a question at all and then the water stop falling a few hours later. I tiptoed across the patio saw the usual debris mangled branches and overturn plants. Stray piles of trash strewn across the road. The air was almost unbelievable. You couldn't help but inhale bales of humidity walking down the block. I waved at mabel. And i saw julie staring at her porch taking stock of the damage. My and her son walked the block. To and i waved their way and they wave back. I wandered through the neighborhood. Patches of folks popped up from st street. We all wore the same face a blend of awe and disbelief. When i made it back home. Jay and manny were outside rummaging the shed leaned from the brunt of the wind but despite everything it stood upright j. reached through the door searching for vegetables to salvage and manny told him to relax. Because we've been lucky considering but jay kept digging until eventually. He pulled the plant from the rubble. It looked a little ugly but still it was a miracle a bright shining thing and despite myself i cheered and manny did to j held the tomato up beaming for the sun urging it to grow.