Mercutio, furious that Romeo refuses to stand up for himself, challenges Tybalt. They draw their swords and begin to fight. Romeo steps between them to stop the fighting, but Tybalt stabs Mercutio under Romeo's arm. Tybalt and the Capulets rush off. Mercutio dies, cursing both Montagues and Capulets: "A plague o' both your houses" (3.1.86).