Overly Affectionate Woman.

The most bewildered occupation I ever had was a housekeeping job at John and Madison’s rented house. John was a physician. He was practical in the extreme, and had no patience with faith. He scoffed openly at any talk of things not to be felt and seen and put down in figures.  Madison was an obedient, imaginative and soft woman with overall affection from her husband. “Jennie,” called John. “You must very well take care of Madison while we live here for three months. She has nervous breakdown I want her to take rest as much as she can”. Madison looked fabulous when we entered the old mansion. She would listen to him in every step he told her to follow; after all he was a physician. Her brother was a physician too.

John looked worried but confident that he could help cure Madison from the nervous breakdown through his medical practition. Being John’s sister, I would try hard to make them happy. I felt that Madison would recover soon from her nervous breakdown since poor John had tried his every possible option.

All for the benefit of Madison’s fast recovery, John brought Madison to this old mansion in order that she could breathe better air and rest as comfortable as she could. There were some legal issues, the mansion was empty for years and John could rent at a cheap rate. The house was three miles away from the village so the place was quite lonely, standing isolated on the far side of the road. It looked calm but not the calmness that any people would want. For the first few weeks, I had difficulty adjusting to the place as most people usually did.

“Jennie, please follow her schedule in case if she gets carried away on her imaginative things.” said John walking hurriedly towards the door. John had scheduled Madison’s prescription for each hour of the day. He let her exercise, drink tonics, journey, catch more fresh air and never let her do any sort of work specially writing which he thought would pressure her mind with more fancy ideas. John said I am supposed to keep watch on Madison if she ever touches any paper.

There were many rooms for maids and guests on the ground floor, but they chose to take the room on the upper floor, the room is big, airy, the whole floor nearly, with windows that look all ways, air and sunshine bountiful. The wallpaper had few scratches; maybe previous landlord’s children must have played around a lot.

John wanted to repaper the wall, but later dropped the idea because they were only going to be here for few months and if he starts, there will be never ending repairs to be done for three months. He said that nothing was worse for a nervous patient than to give a way to such fancies.

She felt uncomfortable whenever I entered the room to clean it. When I caught her several times her face changes to flush like a blending style of chameleon. I could see her hand move swiftly to set aside the book. I always look straight forward to grab the book and advice her that it would be detriment for her health.

During the second month, Madison seems physically better. But her eyes looked tired in the morning whenever I serve the breakfast. I could understand that she had not slept well during the night.

Madison always faced the wall that has scratches on it. It seemed like she always meditates on that wall. She does walk around but mostly she concentrate for much longer time as if her soul has been stuck on that fancy wall. When I enter the room in those first weeks, Madison would describe that there’s something unique about that wall.

Most of the time, John would come very late. During the day Madison would never come out of her room for hours. In those first two months, she was collaborating with us, following the schedule set by her husband. Those provisions really improved her physically but not mentally. She seems abandoned from the present world and kept herself sticking her eyes to that wall much longer than usual.

Near the last week of third month, I was busy cleaning up and putting back things where they belong in the first place. We took things up and down to embellish the room, rearrange the position but now it’s time to move everything back to normal position. Madison would never come out of her room. I noticed in the morning that she had scratched the wall little bit.

Although it’s the last day, I heard John scream at the door. “Open the door, my darling!” Madison had locked herself inside. John could not find the key to get inside the room. I walked up the stairs and let John know that I am available for any help. Madison replied in her gentlest voice. “The key is down by the by the front step, under the plantain leaf” John was very nervous and his body was shaking.

We could hear from outside what was going on inside.  She was peeling off all the papers and tearing down whatever she could reach like a cat scratching the couch. John got frustrated looking for some way to break-in. I found the key and he snatched it from my hand. He nervously put the key into the door’s lock, the door hesitated to open, but with a final shove he got through.

“What is the matter?”   he cried. “For God’s sake. What are you doing!” She was still scratching the wall, she looked at John over her shoulder through disheveled hair. John ultimately fainted on the ground. I wondered what had gone through her mind. She was so soft and yet she absorbed everything inside herself.


Is my narration consistent throughout this piece and does it flow well?

Here comes Richard and Josephine I haven’t seen them in quite some time and they are here together. This is truly weird for they have no reason to visit me today. They came wearing grim faces and portraying sad eyes. In my heart I know that something terrible has happened, I wonder if it has anything to do with the terrible ruckus down at the telegraph station today I swear it was like a complete mad house there. Then they start talking and I can barely believe what I am hearing. “Jessica my sister” she says “I there has been a terrible accident on the rail. It has been most disastrous and families have been thrown into turmoil.” “Death has come and we will get through this as best as we can because we are family and that’s what family does” she continued to speak but I had long stopped listening to her and came to the horrible realization that he was gone. DEAD for that is what he is dead and gone according to Robert. My poor Brently taken away from me in a disastrous culmination of steel and fire on that beast of iron he worked on. I am blinded by the grief for my eyes have been bathed in the wetness of my tears and I have nothing else but sorrow in my heart. I now weep for he whom I lost the man that I love.

In a fell swoop it is gone I feel nothing and need to be alone, my room beckons calling me into the peaceful abyss of my abode. Gone is the light for the sky has turned dark with rain as if somehow the gods feeling my sorrow wept with me and have become spent. The darkness that is there is dissipating slowly like the sobs wrecking through my body. In this moment I am truly lost but just as quickly clarity comes to me as the light starts peeking through more and more through the sky. I remember a time when I was happy and young and beautiful, a time when life was so simple. Then I realized that I was free to go back to being that girl. I was no longer tied down to the dead man I was “FREE” truly free and I am going to love it.

Ecstasy has set in and my heart is pounding my realization has thrown me for a loop and I have accepted that I am truly free. I no longer need to worry about pleasing the dead man I have only myself to worry about. Pure happiness has filled my once dreary heart I feel like new life has been breathed into me and it is intoxicating. I feel alive more so than I have felt in a long time. I can hear her out there shouting in riotous anger Josephine my sister asking me to come out and talking to Robert at my conversation but she doesn’t understand, neither does he. They can’t begin to understand the feelings shooting through my very soul.

I have come to a conclusion that I am better because of his death but at the same time I truly loved that man that wonderful kind man who sheltered me through the years where I was his. I will truly miss him and when I see all that is left of him I will weep again but for now I will relish in my freedom. Because even though he was my love, love was not present all the time and I am happy I am not burdened with loving him anymore. There she is again yelling “Open the door Jessica who are you talking to stop these rambling thoughts before you make yourself sick.”  Sick what does she know she is no doctor she is a question bathed in mystery to me has been all my life.

I have had enough of her pleading and I care not for her talking. I open the door and in she rushes taking me by the hand and pulling me downstairs gently like I am made of glass and liable to break any time soon. I see Robert standing in the foyer looking expectantly at me as if I were there to present him with something. Then I hear it the jingling of the lock and the rattle of a key and in swings the door. Standing there is a ghost a ghost of my husband. I look again and see it’s not a ghost but the real thing. Gone is my freedom gone just as quickly as it came. I am no longer free. There is a pain a stabbing pain in my chest. They are all talking I can tell because their mouths are moving whether from shock I know not. All I hear is the clashing of a bell and the chains dragging me back in he’s alive and I am dead.