Turn around

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You can feel his stare on the back of your neck.

He’s not in the same room as you, he’s not even inside the house. But you know with full certainty that if you turn from the kitchen counter, away from the overripe tomatoes you are chopping and towards the full glass doors that form the only barrier between you and him, he will be there, watching. His eyes will flit from your face, down to the sharp knife in your hand as the tomato juice drips from its point, pooling and splashing onto the slate tiles beneath your feet. His gaze will return to yours and your own eyes will stare right back, transfixed, stuck in the proverbial headlights in perpetual fight or flight mode.

Pasta over-boils behind you, spitting and splattering a shower of water over the surfaces as the steam rises, ready to trigger the smoke detector at any moment.

And as its shrill beep begins to ring out, the spell is broken, you are able to move.

Knife is returned to chopping board, stove is turned down, pan is temporarily removed from the heat.

His eyes remain on you, watching.

You hear him, even though he speaks no words out loud.

Turn around. Turn around.

Do you?

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