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Malice High: The Untitled Series Project
"What do you mean you don't know anymore?" Rubin's tone is furious, his eyes blazing bright, his lips curled back into a sneer.
“I’m done,” my voice slices through the heavy tension, the fog cast day, like a scythe.
“Marlee, I don’t understand.” He says flatly.
“It’s… you’re always constantly distancing yourself. I can’t take it anymore.” My tone is quiet, controlled, composed somehow through all this madness.
“Bull,” Rubin crows, tears streak his eyes, span his suddenly flush face. “Un --- king believable.”
“Whatever, yo. I tried.” I avert his steely gaze. I fish in my bag for the bottle containing my prescription black out drug, Xanax Bars, that whisk away any chance of suffering through hell, another panic attack, a prolonged trip to the Psych Ward.
“What is your reasoning?” Rubin shoots me an accusing look. “Aside from the fact you think ‘I’m too busy’? Is it this?” He knocks the pill out of my hands, and inspects it further.
“It’s everything!” I snap, flustered, throwing my untamable waves into a sloppy bun and stooping to pick up the Xanax bar, popping it into my mouth, and letting it dissolve under my tongue like candy, nearly gagging from its bitter, chalky taste mixing in with my saliva.
Everything’s so loud, whirring, and spinning. My heart’s spasming in my chest. He grips me by the shoulders stunned, his locust eyes boring into my own, it’s like I can read his emotions: scared, angry, lost, depraved.
“Marlee, how could you?” He screams.
“I love you, no matter what.” He draws a deep breath, jamming his hands into the pocket of his skinny’s self consciously, the hands he removed from my body just moments before.
“Stop suffocating me,” I scrape back a battered walnut chair in the too-burnt canary yellow kitchen. It’s hue sickens me. I close in on myself, my mind collapsing, burying my face in my hands, my breaths growing increasingly shallow.
“Marlee,” Rubin joins me in the chair adjacent to my own, studying me. “Marlee, is there someone else… I should know about? For the sake of our relationship, I mean I don’t want you to lie to me, to be lied to.”
Staring straight into his eyes, I look up startled, thinking my eyes must appear pretty shot by now. “Stop assuming s- -t. This has nothing to do with another guy. And even if there was, I would never, ever tell you! Because, now, you suddenly care?! And I am just so overwhelmed with everything right now. God! I don’t need this.”
“Then, why are you still here?” Rubin points out, running his hands distractedly through his shaggy, tousled, dark bed head and fiddling with his lip ring.
“I’m here because my sister lives here. My sister is currently at Oak Grove hospital, after having delivered two twins, through getting knocked up by your brother. That’s why I’m currently sitting in your household. Because, I’m waitin’ for Hunt to give me an update on things.” I grit my teeth, my face scorching red, balling my hands into fists at my sides then reverting to gripping the edge of the bleached white table until my knuckles match the color.
“Ok,” Rubin nods. “Meanwhile you decide to break up with me, for no apparent reason. What the hell am I supposed to think about that?”
Flustered, I tug on a strand of my hair and scowl at him.
“Man, I don’t know anymore.” My tone is harsh, grating, shrill.
“Marlee,” Rubin’s laugh is abrupt, bitter, reeking of self doubt. “If you want out, tell me.”
“I want out,” I confess, dragging my chair back, and rising all of a sudden. I don’t expect it. Maybe Rubin is remembering all he is losing right in that second, but suddenly a glass is frisked, hits the scratched wood floor at break neck speed. It’s just one of the many wine bottles stashed haphazardly behind the stainless steel breadbox on the counter.
“There was no point to that,” I say dimly.
“I was expressing my discontent, sorry.” Rubin says slowly, eyes still trained on mine. “Please, don’t go.”
“My god, Rubin. You are such a petulant child.” I huff, slinging my bag over one shoulder. “I need to figure things out. Give me a break, ok?”
“Don’t go,” he murmurs dully.
He approaches me from behind, steadying his hands on my shoulders, and attempting to whirl me around to face him.
“Get off,” I say in shock, he presses one hand to my face and guides my face toward his insanely startled eyes.
“Goddamit,” I bury my face into his shoulders and then cleanly make my escape, the scent of his AXE mingling. I remove the engraved initial ‘M’ necklace he bought me and place it in the flat of his palm. He closes his long, lean fingers around it, until it snaps under the pressure of his touch.
His guard drops and I have to turn away once more, the tears are hot and thick building up in my throat. The whoosh of the door slamming behind me is deafening. I dash to my Wrangler, open the door, start the engine, inserting the key into the ignition and cranking up some Foster The People, I bite the inside of my cheek to keep from screaming, back out and clip Glady Macintosh’s Subaru pulling in. The crunch of metal on metal satisfactorily wiles away the smart, pain I felt in my heart, all too soon, just moments before.