to make sure heâs okay.â
âHe just fainted, Lori. Heâll be fine.â
The next day, Glenn confronted her.
âWhat the hell happened here last night?â
âYou fainted. Everythingâs fine. It happens all the time. Itâs no big deal, Glenn.â
âJesus. What the . . . ?â
âYouâre fine. But listen, donât tell anybody about it, okay?â
In his naivetyâor perhaps denialâGlenn let it go.
Oddly enough, just a week before, Gilbert had called the family veterinarian. She said that their Labrador, Mindy, suffered from car sickness. âCould I come in and get some Acepromazine? Weâre taking a car trip pretty soon.â
âSure,â the doctor said.
Gilbert showed up some time later and picked up five twenty-five-milligram tablets of the drug.
Acepromazine is similar to Valium. Itâs a stimulant for dogs that are stressed out. It can also be used to prepare an animal for an operation; it stabilizes the rhythms of the heart. An overdose, given in one large dose or over an extended period of time in smaller doses, will drastically reduce the heart rate of an animal or human being.
In time, it will cause death.
Glenn Gilbert later recalled that they werenât planning any road trips at the time. They may have been planning on getting divorced, but a trip was the last thing on their minds. Also, he said, Mindy had been in the car plenty of times, and not once had she ever gotten carsick.
James Perrault sat down one evening and decided to write Gilbert a letter. He knew the only way he could get her full attention was to put his thoughts down on paper and read the letter to her aloud the next time he saw her. If Gilbert didnât like where a conversation was headed, she had a way of manipulating it so it swung back in her direction. Perrault wanted to make sure that didnât happen.
The next morning, he met Gilbert for breakfast at a local mall.
After they got a cup of coffee and had something to eat, Perrault told her to sit down.
âWhat is it, Jimmy?â
He pulled out the letter and read it aloud from beginning to end. It said that he wasnât happy with the way things were, or where they appeared to be heading. He urged her to move out of her house so they could see if there was anything between them. The way things were now, he couldnât do it much longer.
âYes, Jimmy. We could have a future together,â Gilbert said, taking the letter.
As she read it, Gilbert began to cry. Perrault had mentioned in the letter that he would end the relationship if something wasnât done soon.
âDonât . . . Jimmy . . . donât . . . please,â Gilbert begged.
From Perraultâs point of view, it was do-or-die time for Gilbert. She couldnât have it both ways any longer.
âIf you donât leave Glenn, Kristen, Iâm leaving you,â Perrault said.
Gilbert jumped up from her seat and took off toward a pay phone.
âIâm calling Glenn right now,â she screamed.
Perrault went after her.
âIs Glenn there?â Perrault heard Gilbert say to whoever was on the other end of the line.
After a pause, Gilbert said, âItâs me. I just want you to know that I am not happy anymore. Itâs over. I want a divorce.â
Perrault was impressed. She was finally taking charge.
âWhat?â Glenn asked on the other end.
Gilbert hung up, turned toward Perrault and smiled. She began crying, hugging him as if theyâd just hit the lottery.
Several days later, Glenn proposed counseling. He said he still loved her and wanted to save the marriage for the sake of the children. Seven years was worth a counseling session or two, if only to get directions on how to end the marriage.
They went to counseling one time. When they got home, Kristen lashed out at him.
âYou move out!â she said. âIâm not leaving this