Blackwater Days, is a collection of seven linked short stories set in and around the Blackwater Psychiatric Hospital in New South Wales' Hunter Valley. The stories, inspired by Shaun Tan's painting 'Black Water', were written in a creative burst in mid-1996.
Corinne's just published her book on how she profiled the Harbourside Killer, and she holds a combined launch and thank-you party. Invited are her consulted psychiatrists, editors, close friends, and George Faye, who had reviewed her first book.
As the evening progresses, Corinne finds herself captivated by the house across the street's curtains, which seemed to beckon as they moved in the breeze. George comes to find her and notices them, too, which Corinne resents, wanting some privacy, especially as she and George had unresolved romantic tension.
Finally alone after the party, Corinne finds herself comparing her nightly routine to the neurosis the Killer had been victim to; she wakes in the middle of the night and sees the curtains again. Despite her attempts to ignore it, over the next few days, her attention is drawn back to them again and again. Eventually she pretends she is looking for a lost cat, wanders up to the shed, and touches the curtains.
Even so, she can't shake the feeling of being watched.