Jim woke on the third crow of the cock and lay there trying to open his eyes. Mary had pushed the move out to the country A Brick In The Wallas a way to calm him down, to get him away from his work and what she thought was the pressure of the city. Maybe start a family. But things like that damned chicken howling to wake him up weren’t exactly relaxing.

Rolling to a sitting position he reached out for his meds on the bedside table and amazingly found the bottle without knocking anything over, but it was empty. He sighed and tried to keep his mind together – but that didn’t mean he had to crack his eyelids. Leaning back on the bed he reached out for Mary’s legs but instead stuck his hand in … what? Crap, the dog must have thrown up on the blanket again. Not so stress free this country living. Blinking sleep from his eyes he got up and walked to the bathroom to wash his hand.

The sun was starting to come up so there was a thin beam of light coming in the small window and illuminating the sink and toilet. With his one clean hand he turned the faucet and then glanced down as he washed. He stared at his hands, both covered in blood. That wasn’t dog vomit, it was blood. If his hands were covered in blood, then that must have been blood on the bed. He shook his hands quickly and turned back to the bedroom. He couldn’t see much, but he could see that there was a dark spot on the covers. He reached to the light switch on the wall and flipped it on. And he staggered back.

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