I don't remember the exact day I realized he was mad. I only remember the cool, soft breeze across my cheek one Autumn day, as I watched him chopping wood out back. It wasn't so much that he was chopping wood; something he rarely did, but more of how he was completing the task.
Raising the axe over his shoulder and swinging it violently forward, splitting the log in two. The glint from the sunshine nearly blinded me as it reflected off of the blade. Taking yet another log and repeated the process, grunting as he did so.
He looked rougher than I think I have ever seen him and he wore dirty, torn blue jeans, and a red plaid shirt, something I never knew he owned. His long dark curly hair appeared disheveled, and he reminded me of Charles Manson with the scraggly brown and gray beard, that he had grown of late.
He only turned glancing at me only once with bulging blue eyes. They were bloodshot and seemed to pierce through me, and I retreated back towards the house, for safety. Who knew what he could capable of in this state.
Watching from a distance, he continued to chop wood as if we needed it, we did not. We had no fireplace or wood stove in which to burn wood. So why was he so bent on continuing? It was as if he were taking out his frustrations. There were plenty of things to be frustrated about, as he was way behind in painting his latest creation, and that had been before he accepted yet another assignment.
I could hear him screaming from the basement studio nightly. It scared the children at first before they quickly recovered and began to tear the house apart day after day. I tried my best to pick up after them, but it began to be a tiring and hopeless task.
Their appearance changed, and they began to look untidy and unkept, and their hair were as disheveled as his now. Their eyes bulging and bloodshot, as if something had taken over their very souls. They also wore dirty blue jeans and red plaid shirts, and you could see dirty feet peeked out from the bottom of their jeans. From where did these clothes suddenly appear?
It soon became apparent to me that not only was he mad, but them, as well. I searched for a way out as I cooked them dinner one night. If not for me, who would maintain order once again. If this needed to work, I needed to hurry before it was too late.