He first detected light not through his eyes, but with his entire body. The warmth of the – afternoon sun (it took him a while to remember those words) – embraced his whole body even as he was crouching, his head buried in the crook of his arms. It wasn’t scorching – in fact, whenever he recalled this precise moment when he returned, he could only remember the warmth, the benevolent light he was bathed in. At the moment though, the sensation of light scattering on his body was so foreign that he trembled unwittingly, and shrunk into himself. Behind his eyelids, the flood of light penetrated his eyes and teared them, the pain so searing that he stumbled backwards in a crawl and his hands covered them with harsh severity.
He screamed in a hoarse, beastly voice, surprisingly loud for an organ that had been left unused for ages. As he crawled backwards, eyes tight shut, tears flowing, he bumped into something. An external source of noise was directed at him, and although he couldn’t understand it at the time, he knew now what the first words were that he heard upon return:
Later in his years, when he considered the fact that the first contact he had with fellow humans upon return were swear words, he would chuckle quietly, whimsically. Even the kick he suffered from that first stranger was comforting, the evidence of physical contact, the sensation of physical contact he had been deprived of ever since he plunged into that dark abyss.