Karla runs out the room.
“Relax. Relax.” Marc says to me; his hands raised signaling me to take it easy. He has a towel wrapped around him and nothing else. He’s not in the position to fight. I walk within a foot of him, and like Vivian and Sean, he towers over me. I smell the soap he uses that smells like Christmas in Aspen. I smell spearmint on his breath. I smell that scent that’s distinctly Marc’s. The scent that clings to me after an hour of good fucking. After an hour of me begging him not to stop and still asking him to give me a second to regroup. He never does. I love that he never does. No, he always whispers in my ear.
"No," I tell him.
Whop! It's a hard blow to the head that he wasn't expecting. All the five-mile runs throughout yuppie and buppie L.A. streets, while I'm practicing mindfulness in yoga, can't save him from the unexpected. The blow makes him stumble backward. He reaches out an arm to stop the next blow.
Whop! But not in time. His back slams into the only bedroom window in the room, shattering the glass.
"What was that!" I hear his mother Carmen yell, as though she has a set of badass school kids up here.
"Okay, Rachel," Marc says calmly, regaining his footing. "Okay."
Whop! A blow to the head. Whop! Another blow to the head. And now he's not trying to defend himself; he's trying to grab my arms. I knee him in his abs, and he doubles over, his towel falling from his waist. He tries to grab me to cover himself from Vivian. I make a fist and pound down hard on his back. He lands on the ground. He then scrambles to get out of the room.
Boom! I give him a kick to the side of the head. He falls to his side, shielding his dick.
"Rachel! Rachel!" he yells out.
Whop! Whop! Boom! Whop! Boom! Hits and kicks. Ugh! Shoves. He makes it out of his bedroom and attempts to head into the bathroom. Ugh! One shove of my foot pushes him down the staircase.
Doom! Doom! Doom! He goes down the steps. I follow him, rushing down after him. Whop! Doom! Boom! Ugh!
"What the hell is that noise?!" I hear his mother Carmen yell.
“I think I may know,” I hear Pop say, calmly, as only a teacher from an inner-city Los Angeles high school can. Now people in the house are rushing to the staircase, confused.
"Oh shit!" I hear someone yell out.
"Pop!" Marc yells out to his father. "Grab my clothes!" Whop! Boom! Ugh! Whop!
"Oh my God!" I hear Marc's mother yell. "Rachel! Rachel! Okay, Rachel! Wait, Rachel! Wait!" Marc rushes over to a wall by the front door, still hiding his dick with one hand, attempting to stand.
One big Boom! pushes him through the front door of the house and onto the porch. Everyone snaps their head to the front porch.
"Oh shit!" I hear people yelling. Christmas Just Ain’t Christmas (Without the One You Love) blares from sound speakers.
“Okay, Rachel!” Marc yells. “Okay!”
I begin my routine all over. Boom! Ugh! Whop! Marc stumbles down the porch steps and lands at the bottom.
"What the fuck!" I hear people yell as they run over to the porch. I feel arms—a lot of arms—grab me. Marc's on the ground trying to back away from the porch, his hand still hiding his dick. He's hurt. He's trying to stand, but he's weak. I've hit him in the nose; I'm sure his face has a piercing pain. He's holding his face with his spare hand. He's trying to shake off the pain in his body.
Come on, Marc. You have a gym membership. You can do it.
He’s trying to stand. But I’ve caught him off guard.
"Get off of me, now!" I yell at the men who've restrained me. "Get off of me! Don't touch me!" Sean's holding me on my right. Trev's holding me on my left. They're trying to pull me back into the house. I kick my legs. I twist my arms. They're pulling me back towards the house. "You're hurting me!" I yell out. It's a lie.
“Let her go!” Marc yells.
“Marc—!” Sean yells.
“You’re hurting me!” I yell again.
"Let her go!" Marc yells again, waving Sean and Trev off. Sean and Trev put both of their arms in their air like they're in a stick-up. I charge at Marc again. Confusion surrounds us.
"Pops!" Marc yells at his father. He needs clothes. I rush over to Marc and begin my routine all over.
Whop! Boom! Ugh! Boom!
He swats me away with one arm while holding his dick with the other.
“Rachel!” He yells at me.
Whop! Boom! Ugh! Whop!
He grabs hold of my t-shirt in a fist and yanks me on top of him.
Do you not see that I’m completely fucking naked!
“Rachel,” he whispers in my ear, out of breath. “Okay, I get it.”
Whop! I give him a close-range shot to the side of the head.
“Fuck!” he yells.
“Marc!” I hear Sean yell.
“Don’t touch me, Sean!” I yell back.
“Don’t touch her,” Marc says, out of breath and weak.
Marc releases his grip on my shirt, and so I stand over him. I kick him. I stomp on his chest. I slam a foot into the side of his head. I hear the gasps. I see Trev and Sean standing around, like managers waiting for their fighter to throw in the towel. Marc does his best to block my blows.
“Marc!” I hear Barbie yell. She runs over to him, clothes and Converse sneakers in her hands. She puts them in his hands and rushes away from the fight.
Whop! Boom! Ugh!
I hit. I kick. I shove. Marc frantically slides into a pair of grey sweats. He has to let go of his dick to pull them up. He hurries to do this.
Boooom! My biggest blow to his face yet. It almost sends him flying backward.
“Shit!” I hear both Trev and Sean say.
“Marc!” Sean yells out. Marc puts one hand over his face, in pain, but waves Sean and Trev off with the other.
Don’t touch my wife.
With one hand still over his face, Marc slides on his Converse and then turns over to crawl away. He's defeated.
But he can't make it.
He lands on this stomach, his head resting on the back of his hands.
"Alright, Rachel," I hear Vivian say. Marc puts his hands over his head and gives me the time-out signal.
I feel Vivian take hold of my arm. She leads me away towards her car. And no one says a word. I notice the music has now stopped and no one is making a sound. I turn to see Marc struggling to stand up. Sean and Trev have walked over to him.
I climb into the passenger seat of Vivian's car while she jumps into the driver's seat. We both slam the door just as she's putting her foot on the gas.
We’ve closed out the world and entered the quiet stillness of our own realm.
“Well, that solves that,” she says.
"Mm-hmm," is all I can say because I'm out of breath. I turn to look at Marc one last time. He slowly makes it to his feet, wearing nothing but sweatpants and Converse. Chest and abs sweaty and tense. Trev and Sean stand beside him. They all look towards Vivian's car. I look at Marc's face as Vivian pulls away. He isn't mad. He looks…