Poppet is murdered.
Last night was the school's fall festival. Yesterday was full of errands in preparation. This time, I was gone for inside of an hour. I returned to find her lying on the ground, her shattered wand thrown into the street. She lay in the sunlight, in a litter of smashed pots and cigarette butts.
The gate was kicked open, the small lock broken. Around the house were angry stories---vines torn from the windows, the grill tumbled on its side, other pieces broken. There were no signs of attempts to enter the house. This house can't be entered so easily. At least there's that.
But Poppet lay brutally broken. This was personal.
I know who did this. Breaking up is hard to do, the song says. Breaking up with an unstable person can be dangerous. I've learned that most creative people have oddities. That seems to go with the territory. But some of those people have oddities that run deep. They aren't revealed until they have no more reason to hide them. I've acquired a new phone, changed my other numbers, secured my house.
His oddities include violently blaming others for troubles he created. Now it appears to be my turn to shoulder this blame. In his heart of hearts, I'm not the one he's angry at. This is the stuff at the center of many stories of demons and monsters. A human at war with himself.
And now poor poppet is murdered.
Be careful, dear readers, whom you let into your lives. Some things cannot be uncovered even with background checking. They must be found by other methods, beginning with looking past the glamour of love. I saw signs. In retrospect, I see they were flashing neon ones. I rationalized past them. It's me, after all. Things are different with me. Yes, be careful. Otherwise you'll be where I am now, deeply shamed for my gullibility, blaming myself for someone else's actions.
I carried her back to the spot where she'd stood under the trees and laid her gently down. Her spirit very likely still lives and now I must create a new place for it and see if it moves in.
Take care. Really, take care.