Accused killer Bradley Scott Purkiss' former partner said she had been trying to leave him at the time of the alleged murder, a court has heard.
Mr Purkiss, of Elderslie, and Margaret Anne Otto, of Risdon Vale, are jointly charged with the murder of Ms Otto's husband Dwayne Robert Davies.
Mr Davies was last seen on May 26, 2017 and his body was found just over a week later.
The pair face trial together in the Hobart Supreme Court and have both pleaded not guilty.
The Crown alleged Mr Purkiss and Ms Otto colluded to kill Mr Davies.
Mr Purkiss' former partner Jillian Roberts told the court via video-link at the time of the alleged murder her relationship with the accused was "uneasy" and "challenging".
The pair had entered a relationship three years earlier when they were coworkers and in May 2017 were living together at Elderslie.
"I didn't want to continue the relationship at that stage and hadn't wanted to for some time," Ms Roberts said.
"I did on occasion pack a bag but I didn't act on it. My thoughts were - I shouldn't be driven from my own home.
"He got quite angry and frustrated with the decision."
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Ms Roberts said when she told Mr Purkiss she wanted to end the relationship he withdrew both physically and emotionally.
"He lived in the shed basically," she said.
"For a long period of time we were like ships in the night."
Partner asked to leave 'for own protection'
Earlier in the trial, the Crown alleged Mr Davies was killed in a shed used to grow cannabis at Mr Purkiss' Elderslie residence.
The court heard on Friday Ms Roberts owned this property and had been living there with Mr Purkiss for 12 months prior to Mr Davies' death.
On the night of the alleged killing, the court heard Mr Purkiss asked Ms Roberts to leave the property, suggesting she go out and get dinner elsewhere, because Mr Davies was coming over.
Ms Roberts said she was asked to leave "for my own protection in case things got a bit heated."
The court heard Mr Purkiss was going to confront Mr Davies about how often he visited Elderslie.
"I wasn't exactly thrilled," Ms Roberts said, but nonetheless she left the home and CCTV footage shown to the jury depicted her having a meal at McDonald's in Bridgewater.
The court heard Mr Davies had been visiting Elderslie frequently and at a point in time leading up to his alleged murder he had visited the house for 12 consecutive days.
Ms Robert said she did not approve of Mr Davies' visits.
"It would be nice to actually, when I had a day off, have the house and garden to myself," she said.
"I didn't think it was a healthy thing to do to visit someone with such frequency."
Victim and wife had 'dysfunctional' relationship
Ms Roberts said she and Ms Otto had discussed personal matters together.
The court heard Ms Otto spoke about how her relationship with Mr Davies was "challenging" at times and she felt she was "walking on eggshells".
"His mannerisms, his mood swings. It was easier if he was happy," Ms Roberts said.
"She said things in the last 18 months or so were a little bit harder at home.
"It sounded like what I would describe a dysfunctional relationship."
Ms Roberts said it was "not all doom and gloom".
"I wouldn't say it was deeply negative. Disappointed, maybe."
Mutual interest in tattooing
Ms Roberts said she believed Mr Purkiss and Mr Davies had met though their mutual interest in tattooing.
Mr Davies owned a tattoo parlour, Ink Addiction in Bridgewater, and Ms Roberts said Mr Purkiss had a number of tattoos.
The court heard when Mr Davies would visit Elderslie he and Mr Purkiss would sit in the shed, drinking coffee and smoking marijuana.
"They seemed to get along quite well but Mr Purkiss commented Mr Davies was quite needy," Ms Roberts said.
The trial before Chief Justice Alan Blow continues