PrologueHe walked inside, his shirt ripped, his face bleeding, and his back red from the blood. She was baking again. The only thing a stressed woman could do when there was nothing to stress-eat. Stress-baking. Stress-baking for stress-eating. He groaned, barely inhaling the sickeningly sweet scent of blood and cake. His eyes were puffy and welled up with uncried tears. She hadn't noticed him walk in. The world was dangerous. He should be more careful. He leaned against the wall, the only thing keeping him up. His wife was still baking.
"Are the kids asleep?" He rasped.
She jumped and nodded, barely glancing at him.
"Good - they can't see me like this..." He murmured.
"What- oh, my God..." She covered her mouth with her hands, turning off the oven. "We need to get you to the doctor..." She stressed, grabbing a freshly baked cookie from the counter.
He shook his head. "Here. Bathroom. Help." He muttered as she held out her arm. He took it gratefully, leaning his head on her shoulder as he walked.
"I don't think she's asleep..." He glanced at his daughter's door.
"Shhh, you need help. Don't speak." She shushed him, sitting him down on the bathroom stool. She closed the door and he shrugged off his ripped shirt, leaning his head into the sink. She trailed her finger down the bleeding scratches on his chest.
The door opened. Their daughter walked in. She quietly gasped.
"Daddy, what happened to you?!"
Everything else started to get fuzzy.
"Dylan, go to your room."
"Dammit, Dylan, just go to bed!"
And for Jazz, everything went black.