Grace met Jack in a park, where her younger sister (who has down’s syndrome) is dancing alone. While other people were staring at Millie, Jack approached them and danced with Millie. Grace found it hard to find a man who could accept that she has responsibility with Millie (because their parents don’t want her). Jack was everything she was looking for, and she fell in love with him immediately because he was so perfect. When he asked her to marry him, there was no doubt she said yes.
Millie fell down the stairs (which Millie then told Grace that Jack pushed her down the stairs). They pushed through with the wedding while Millie was at the hospital. After the wedding, they went to Thailand for their honeymoon, and that was when Grace found out who Jack really was.
Jack only married her because he wanted someone he could torture, someone whom no one is gonna look for – Millie was that someone and Grace was just a way of getting Millie. Grace had several attempts to escape, but Jack always outsmarted her. She never found the chance to run for a year, and she was pressured because it would just be a few months until Millie lived with them. When Millie lives with them, Jack will then start torturing her.
Every time Grace tries to escape, she is punished, either by being prohibited from seeing Millie, taking away privileges, or being locked in the basement. Still, she tries her best to escape. One Sunday, when Mrs. Goodrich asked to see both of them because Millie was having trouble sleeping. She has then prescribed sleeping pills. When Grace saw Millie again the next week, Millie handed her the sleeping pills she gathered every night. Millie just asked her to kill Jack, and Grace made her believe that she flushed the drugs in the toilet, but the truth was she kept it in her shoe, thinking how she’d get Jack to drink it.
Grace finally had the chance to let Jack drink the pills. She crushed it secretly and then poured it into Jack’s whiskey. She was having drinks with Jack regularly because as per her request, but on the day Jack lost his case for the first time, they drank together, and she added the crushed pills in his glass. It knocked him off and gave her enough time to go to Thailand. Both of them were planning to have a vacation in Thailand. Since she didn’t know how to go to the airport, she ended up asking Esther. Esther picked her up from home and dropped her at the airport.
While in Thailand, she kept on leaving messages to Jack, asking him to call her. She told the people she met in Thailand and the receptionist that Jack would just be a few days late since finishing some paperwork for the case. As days passed, she left more frantic voicemails to Jack.
Since she no longer received any calls from Jack, she called his friend, Adam. Adam looked for Jack but found no trace of him. Together with the police, they went inside the house. They found Jack’s body in the basement. Grace was then informed in Thailand, and she came rushing back home, nervous about how she’d handle the situation, to make sure that no one would suspect that she killed Jack by sneaking sleeping pills into his whiskey.
From Thailand, Grace was picked up by Esther. Grace doesn’t want to talk to Esther because Esther is very observant. During dinners with her before, she always asks questions and constantly reaches out to Grace, like she’s looking for any sign of imperfection.
Esther insisted that they have coffee first before talking to anyone else. She informed Grace that Jack didn’t die of a drug overdose, but because of dehydration – because he was locked inside a basement that can only be opened on the outside. Esther also asked Grace about the cellar, painted red, with battered portraits of women hanging on the wall. Esther clarified this with her because Jack mentioned Millie would have a Red Room, but she said that her room would be Yellow when they met Millie.
Grace was anxious because it looked like Esther had figured out what she had done. However, Esther said that the two of them were the last ones who saw Jack alive when he waved by the window — and Grace realized that Esther was helping her.
Author: B.A. Paris
Finished reading this on July 26, 2018
The End of Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris.