The Unexpected Guest


It was a cozy little gathering. Such a lovely house, well decorated, stylish but not overstated. Tasteful. I was the last guest to arrive for, what seemed, an interesting and entertaining dinner party. What was it they call it? A Soiré?

There was Daphne, slumped languidly, in an armchair. She looked ravishing. The same name as my Mother. Red, it was the perfect colour for Daphne. It suited her, a contrast to her blonde, flowing hair. Red had suited my Mother too.

Then there was the ridiculous Thompson. Always surly, silent and morose, even at such a jolly gathering like this. And that ridiculous wig. What was it they called it, a toupé?. So obvious, I mean, it wasn’t even on straight. Laughable vanity of the man.

The couple, I did not know at all. He sat on the sofa, with her beside him. What can I add, I was not acquainted with them, all I can say is that red did not suit her quite as well as it looked on Daphne.

I do not think I had been expected, they had all seemed a little surprised to see me. I sat there now, in an atmosphere of polite silence. It did not unsettle me, I was quite used to quiet and had never been one of those gregarious animals that slotted smoothly into social situations. The hostess and her husband were in the kitchen. They were quiet too. I like the quiet.

Their two children had run upstairs, they had not come down. I had noticed after finishing them off how drab the décor was in the upstair rooms. It is all appearences with these people, just like Mother. Ironically, it had been one of the boys who had run in from the back garden where he had been chopping wood and had failed to close the back door. I had entered that way, picking up the wood axe on my way along the garden path, bordered with the first spring flowers of the year.

And now I sat there, waiting. There would be a search, the hospital would have missed one of their most dangerous patients by now. Alarms. Panic. I could see Doctor Thompson, red faced and sweating, his silly little wig all askance, fretting about what my escape would do to his eminant career as an expert on the criminally insane. Well, this little dinner party wasn’t going to look good on his record was it?

Is that the sound of police sirens? Probably.