Now there are a lot of questions here so feel free to ignore most of them and just comment on the ones you want to comment on (if indeed any at all!) Imagine a new friend has been stabbed in the back between his shoulder blades right in front of you. He asks you to pull the knife out and insists he is fine, he is barely bleeding and refuses to go to hospital. How would you react? What would you be thinking? This new friend has let you stay in his home rent free to avoid homelessness. His only conditions : 1) that you must lock your door at night, he says this is because he sleepwalks and has been prone to violent outbursts in the past and 2) You must never go into the basement. How do you react? Would you be afraid? What if he tells you that he is tube fed and he keeps all of his medical supplies down there? He doesn't like people seeing it because he doesn't want people to treat him differently? Is that a reasonable justification? Do you believe him? Finally, your new friend has another medical condition, you've seen the rashes on his skin caused by exposure to the sun. He says the doctors couldn't give him a diagnosis. Put that together with all of the above are any alarm bells ringing in your head? Now I know what I'd be thinking about all that myself, but as it's a choice between a roof over your head or being stuck on the street in the rainy season I know what i'd probably opt for. I'm trying to drop gradual hints to the reader as to what's really going on until it builds up to the climax but it won't work if the reader thinks the secondary character is totally naive, and it won't work if the reader guesses what's going on too soon! Any thoughts are much appreciated.