“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but your words…they’ll destroy my soul.” ― Cassandra Giovanni
I’ll Take the Rain is a little snippet, only 23 pages; a slice of life between the narrator and his boyfriend. The author doesn’t give us any names. My only conclusion as to why is that this could be anyone in a relationship that isn’t healthy. This could be someone you know; it could be you.
My impression is that this is the beginning of a very abusive relationship, before the excuses become warnings and sirens. The narrator’s boyfriend is very distant and cold one moment, then loving and appreciative the next. Their roommate notices the changes and voices concern only to be told to mind her own business. As the story goes on, we see the narrator begging his boyfriend to tell him what he did wrong. He’s always blaming himself. When he does something the boyfriend doesn’t like, he’s banished from the bedroom to sleep on the couch, only to be woken up with loving kisses. Like nothing was ever wrong.
It really took my breath away how the narrator made excuses for his boyfriend’s behavior. I wanted to reach out and shake some sense into him. How does he not see this is a one sided relationship? There is a sense of helplessness as the reader understands that there is nothing we can do to change the outcome; only the narrator can determine his future.
The story ends abruptly, with no knowledge of what happens next with this couple. We are left to imagine what the future holds for them. To take them down a specific path or storyline removes the most powerful part of the story, the anonymity of anyone in this same situation.
For a short story, I’ll Take the Rain is a very intense cautionary tale that will get your heart pumping. Don’t miss it.