The baby was crying.
Her mother, blearily, sleepily, padded over to the child’s cradle. The floor was cold against her feet and a winter rain beat down outside, making the air wet and clammy. She pulled the crying infant up into her arms for a feeding.
In the bed behind them, her husband stirred.
“Go back to sleep, dear.”
“No, it’s fine. I’ll just get an early start.” He swung his feet over the edge of the bed and hissed as they made contact with the cold wood.
Pulling on his trousers, he stepped over to the window of their second floor apartment and looked out into the street below. “Quite a torrent. Sky’s black as pitch.”
From the roof, an irregular thumping noise echoed down. His wife looked at him quizzically. “Hail? At this time of year? How peculiar.” She said.
“Yes, indeed.” He responded, squinting out the window. The rain was starting to slack, but there was something strange happening down in the street.
The water was slithering.
“Darling,” he said. “This is most unusual, but it appears to have been raining snakes.”
“Strange.” Shrugged his wife, nonplussed. “I always thought the apocalypse would come on a Wednesday.”
On December 15th of 1877, it was reported by the Memphis Appeal to have, in fact, rained snakes on the unsuspected populace of Vance Avenue. They were a mix of black and brown, most being less than a foot long. Apparently a few were captured and brought in to the newspaper as evidence. Thankfully, this was not a sign of the apocalypse. Or maybe it was, and it is just a very, very slow one.