Through the brave actions of two of her sons and some extraordinary luck, the life of a Melbourne woman stabbed 25 times with a sharpened screwdriver was spared.
Alerted by their mother's screams, the teenage twins found their father on top of her on a couch, stabbing her in the head, chest and arms with the tool.
"You're going to kill me," she screamed at her de facto husband of 19 years.
"Yes. That's what I want to do," he chillingly replied.
One of the boys grabbed his father and held him back long enough for his mother to flee to a neighbour's home.
"It appears certain he would have killed her then and there had the boys not bravely intervened," a Victorian judge said while sentencing him to more than 11 years behind bars on Thursday.
"Next he did something half decent - apologised to his sons and said he'd have to hand himself in."
But it was a promise the now 45-year-old did not live up to - instead he followed the bleeding woman next door.
He pulled her hair and shouted for her to look into his eyes when he spoke.
Then, turning from bully to coward, he fled in her car and was arrested by police later, the judge said.
The woman suffered life-threatening injuries in the June 2019 attack, including six stab wounds to the chest that caused a collapsed lung, and required surgery for a full thickness split in her lip.
The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had been in a "less than useless state" in the previous decade.
He was unemployed and on a disability pension after a workplace injury and had taken to smoking vast quantities of ice.
He had been on a days' long ice bender before the attack and had a history as a family violence perpetrator.
"It seems that he was set off by something as trivial as (his partner's) suggestions that he should leave if he was going to continue smoking an ice pipe in bed," the judge said.
"By exploding with terrifying violence over nothing on this occasion, he betrayed the trust proposed in him in a most profound way."
He said the ice-fuelled behaviour was as breathtaking in its savagery as it was miraculous in its outcome.
It's understood the victim has suffered no long-term physical effects
He said the man wasn't without his own story. His family fled war-torn Iraq and lived for years in a Syrian refugee camp before coming to Australia.
He has PTSD and a major depressive disorder.
The judge said he was satisfied the man was ashamed of his actions and assessed his rehabilitation prospects as guarded.
The man will be eligible for parole after serving at least eight years of an 11 year and four month sentence.