The scrawl on the envelope told her she’d been found. It didn’t matter that she was in a foreign country or that it had been awhile since the last letter. He’d pursue her to the end. She thought for a moment about alerting the authorities. In case he tried to enter the country. But they told her before there was nothing they could do, until he actually commits a crime. They told her to relax. People like him, they said, are more bark than bite. But she knew better. He could be here already. He might have even watched her take the letter from the mailbox.
She shut the blinds. She packed an overnight bag with shaking hands and tried to think. It was an hour until school pick up, when the streets would be busy again. She’d go then, hop on a bus to the train station, head south. She’d keep to bigger towns until she got to Sydney.
There was money in a shoe box in the closet, enough to keep her comfortable for a while. She opened the lid. Next to the envelope of cash was stack of letters identical to the one she just received. There were so many.
Half an hour until she could leave. She made a cup of tea. At the kitchen table, she took out the letter. It was strange to see her latest name in his handwriting. She cut open the envelope and read:
I am not irritated with you even though this life is not what I thought it would be….I am not because I do not empower you to irritate me…. I come with good intentions…I come as me…no disguises….it was meant to be goodness and it was not goodness for you…..nor for me…but I’m not disturbed by all this…..when things don’t work for me I have my way of dealing and you have yours…..as far as your comment that day about me being incomprehensible…. your inability to understand is your problem……I know a lot about you…. a lot…if you only knew something about me…how I angst over every word….intention and reception…I think one has to have serious scars in their being to be as careful as I am…but remember this, while you pronounce judgements so shall you be judged…..I gave you more than you were entitled to….and I don’t forget…emotional abandonment is a thought that comes to mind…you left a lot of people with emotional disruption and you never returned to the scene of the crime…..no goodbyes…..no remorse….not even a friggin postcard…. this is the third edit and the brakes are coming off… I think you confuse the difference between exile and escape… you don’t know where I am….but I know where you are….If all this comes under the heading of nonsense…buy a dictionary or go back to school….I know all about anger…it can be for lack of another tool… a way to get through the day…. too bad you don’t get my jokes….I don’t get yours…I don’t get you at all…maybe I never did….but I know what compelled me to stay with you…and you have no idea why you were there…the world doesn’t need any more people in denial…..all this sounds like an escape clause if I ever saw one… I know a lot about you…… I know you need to expand your horizons….open that steel trap of yours….and for G-d’s sake …get a friggin sense of humour….it’s such a good friend to have…like I was a good friend… and don’t forget, I come as me….no disguises….and I know where to find you
Before opening the front door, just in case, she tapped the number for emergency into her cell phone and tucked it in her pocket within easy reach. She stepped outside into the sunshine, locking the door behind her, and there it was, the blade against her neck.