Ellen’s breathing has become shallow. I detected this fact a while ago. Were I to turn and look at her I’m sure I would see a light film of perspiration on her brow. Her eyes are certain to be darting about the room. These are all things Ellen is prone to when she becomes nervous. She has good reason to be nervous. This is what I know.

Ellen is nervous about David. He has become unpredictable of late. I’m afraid of what David might do. Probably not as much as Ellen, but still, I’m concerned. So it is that I sit here and wonder what will happen next. Just as Ellen does.

You see it all began about a month ago. Things had been good for the better part of a year up until then. David had been so good about taking his medication, just like the doctor said he would. Everyone had been apprehensive about him being let out of the home when he first returned but as the weeks and then the months passed things became more relaxed. Then last month there was an incident.

The neighbour’s dog was found hanging from the apple tree in the front yard. Things had been done to its body. Bad things. Questions were asked. Answers were not forthcoming. Everyone suspected David. The uproar had only just died down when there was another incident. Ellen walked into the bathroom one morning only to find some words written on the mirror. Her screams woke everyone else up. It wasn’t only the nature of the words that had been written that had alarmed her so much; it was the fact that they were written in blood. There were a few other things that happened too.

It’s been quiet around here for a week or so. Still, everyone treads lightly around David. Especially Ellen. I heard her talking to mother and father this morning before they left for their outing. She wanted to go with them. They kept reassuring her that everything would be fine and that they’d be back in a few hours.

I wish I could say that Ellen was being unreasonable with her protestations but I feel the same way she does. David can’t be trusted. Ellen thinks he’s stopped taking his medication. That he only pretends to take it and then flushes it down the toilet later. She doesn’t know that I know this.

I can feel her looking at me now. It’s as though her eyes are drilling holes in the back of my head. She wants me to tell her that everything is fine. That David will behave today. I wish that I could, but as I said, I’m nervous too. Still, I suppose I should at least try to ease her concerns. I’ll just have a word with her.

“Ellen, I know you’re frightened. It’s okay. Everyone has been on edge lately. Just try to relax. It’s a full moon today you know.”

She’s giving me a look. Her eyes have become wide. The colour has left her face. Oh dear, her hands are shaking. All this as I stand and move towards her. But you know something? It’s all an act. David knows what she really feels. David knows she’s mocking him. David doesn’t like being mocked.

“David, please, don’t come near me. Dear god, why are you holding that letter opener like that? David, stop!”

Mother and father were really hoping that David was getting better. They are going to be so disappointed when they get home. The carpet is ruined.


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