He never saw it coming. Her left hook landed him on the floor. Bruised cheek, purple nose, swollen lips. She cursed his existence.

You fuck every women in town, she said. Then you come home and you want to fuck me, she threw a piece of China against the wall.

Where do you get your information from? he asked. These are all lies, the old man moved towards the freezer to grab a bag of frozen carrots and peas. He placed the bag of vegetables to the right side of his face. He hoped the swelling would go down. The old man had a date across town later that evening. He didn’t need any questions.

And your drinking, she said. All you do is drink all day and fuck all night. You’re like an animal. You never get enough, she shouted.

Shhh, baby. Let me tell you something. I worked for years to keep a roof over this house. To pay your bills. What have you contributed? he asked. What sacrifices have you made? she wadded her fist up again and knocked him to the ground. God damn you, he said. If I didn’t believe in hitting women, you’d have been knocked out a long time ago.

They looked at each other in silence. He started to smile. She started to laugh. She got down on the floor next to him. Her blonde hair in his face. The woman kissed him on his swollen lips. She kissed his purple nose. She said I love you. He said I love you too,

He didn’t go across town that night.

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