New fiction from a dear friend/fan/contender
FICTION, but based on two very real, very strong women
It was a fantasy I’d long harbored, so when the opportunity presented itself, I didn’t hesitate.
An ex-girlfriend and I were having dinner during one of her first visits back to town in a couple years. During the meal, I found a way to work the conversation around to how, when we were together, we used to wrestle and box.
I reminded Annie (not her real name) how at first I’d thought I’d have to let her win, so she wouldn’t become discouraged and quit. But, in fact, she beat me the first time we boxed — and every time after.
We’re the same height, 5’10”, and though I outweighed her, she was faster. She’d been a competitive swimmer in school, and was proud of her long, powerful legs.
After we’d started our own domestic bouts, she’d taken up some light weight lifting to increase her upper body strength, too.
Over time, Annie got even better. Soon she’d developed a mean left jab, and she wasn’t afraid to punch me — and hard. Most of our fights ended with me flat out on the carpet, unable to continue.
She became pretty cocky, too. Our last fight, before she moved out of state, was a massacre: Before we began, she’d struck a sort of body builder’s pose, showing off her muscles and leaving me speechless. Then she asked, “Are you ready?”
In a flash, Annie then pounded me with a half-dozen punches to the head and belly that left me dazed. She proceeded to smash me senseless, finishing me off with a hard right cross to the jaw.
I was out before I hit the floor.
Talking about these fights during our dinner, I then mentioned I knew this woman here in Michigan who was an excellent boxer, Sybil Starr. In fact, Sybil and I had fought several times, always with her winning decisively, and she’d knocked me out at least twice.
Actually, I continued, Sybil was pretty great in any physical competition we’d tried — she’d beaten me when we wrestled, and easily, and in arm wrestling. In fact, she’d even brought me to my knees in a test of strength. She was unbeatable, I figured.
So would Annie be willing to go a few rounds with Sybil, I asked with as much innocence as I could fake. To my delight Annie, rarely one to resist a challenge, agreed.
What she didn’t know was I’d already made arrangements with Sybil for a match the very next day.
Here’s how I handicapped this battle, having fought each of these gorgeous women. Annie was several inches taller, broad-shouldered, had a longer reach and probably was stronger. She could really hit.
But Sybil was younger and faster, and far more experienced and skilled. And pretty tough herself.
Annie’s punching abilities were powerful but rudimentary; Sybil’s were surgical and precise.
It seemed to me Sybil had the odds in her favor.
So the next day the three of us met at the home of a friend of Sybil’s who had a ring set-up. The two women changed into very fetching bikinis — Sybil in blue-and-white stripes, Annie in black.
They climbed into the ring and, as they put on the regulation boxing gloves, I could tell they were sizing each other up.
“So I hear you can hit pretty hard,” Sybil said, smiling.
“I can probably knock a slender little girl like you out of the ring,” Annie replied.
“Oh, yeah? We’ll just see who ends up teaching the other a lesson.”
Sybil, no longer smiling, lifted her gloved fists. Annie did the same.
“OK,” I said, “if you’re both ready, the rules are you fight until one of you surrenders.”
“Fine by me,” said Annie, who without warning smashed her right fist deep into Sybil’s belly!
Sybil, caught off guard, tried to cover up, but Annie punched her in the belly again! And again!
Then a left, right to the head! Sybil dropped to her hands and knees.
“Not so talkative now, are you?” Annie said, standing over her opponent.
“OK, if you want it like that,” the redhead replied, getting to her feet.
Sybil, a picture of speed, skill and beauty, launched into the taller woman, punching her mouth, chin, jaw and belly repeatedly. Annie was unable to protect herself.
Three more fast punches to Annie’s muscled midsection — wham, wham, wham! — and my ex- collapsed to the mat with a crash.
“Get up, if you’re so tough,” Sybil commanded.
At that point, I figured this was going to be a quick bout. Surely Annie would realize Sybil was a far superior fighter and would concede.
But to my surprise and delight, Annie got up.
“One knock-down each. I’m going to knock you out,” Annie said, lifting her fists.
“You can try,” Sybil laughed.
She then pounded Annie in the belly — 1, 2, 3, 4! Her victim sunk to her knees, moaning.
“What were you saying about who was going to knock me out?” Sybil asked with wicked smile.
Annie slowly stood. Sybil bashed her across the jaw with a mighty right cross. As if in slow motion, the dark-haired woman fell backward onto the canvas — arms spread eagle as if shot.
Sybil lifted her arms over her head — “That was too easy.”
I climbed into the ring and asked Annie if she’d had enough.
Again to my surprise — and joy, as I didn’t want this fight to end quickly — Annie struggled to get up.
“I’ll show her who’s stronger,” she swore.
“You want more?” Sybil taunted, as the two faced off again.
Sybil punched Annie in the belly, chin, jaw, cheek, jaw! What a beating! She muscled Annie, now bleeding from her lower lip, against the ropes, then hammered her right fist into her opponent’s midsection — 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6!
Annie fell face down on the canvas. Sybil strutted around the ring — “Now what do you have to say? Do you give?”
Slowly Annie pushed herself up. “I’m going to beat you senseless for this,” she muttered.
My ex- stood and again lifted her gloved fists.
“OK, you asked for this,” Sybil sighed as she approached.
But as she got close, Annie smashed her right into the redhead’s unprotected belly — wham! “Ufff!”
Again! Again! Then her left, right, left, right, right! Sybil dropped as if shot.
“You’re going to beg me to stop,” Annie practically yelled, lifting her arms and flexing her impressive biceps.
Sybil stood, and the taller woman laid into her, slamming her hard fists into Sybil’s head and gut — over and over! A final right cross to the jaw set the smaller female sprawling across the ring.
Sybil got to her hands and knees, but Annie kicked her in the ribs, sending her to the corner.
Clearly in pain, Sybil started to pull herself up on the ropes. Annie wrapped her arms around the redhead and tugged her to her feet. She then draped Sybil’s arms over the top rope, and punched her — hard — in her exposed belly! Wham! Wham! Wham! Wham!
A left to the jaw, a right to the mouth, two left jabs directly to the face.
“Beg me to stop,” Annie demanded. “Then I’ll KO you to finish this.”
“No,” Sybil said, barely able to catch her breath.
“Fine by me,” Annie replied with a cruel smile, and began hammering Sybil’s midsection with alternating lefts and rights.
It seemed this fight wasn’t going to end as I expected, that Annie had taken everything Sybil had to give but still would triumph. She was just too strong.
Still Annie pummeled her seemingly beaten victim’s belly. Then, a killer right to the jaw — pow! — and Sybil clattered to the mat.
Annie put her foot on her downed opponent’s back and lifted her gloved fists — “I win!” Annie wanted to make sure I was looking at her, at her toned body.
But, still, Sybil wasn’t quitting. She struggled to stand, and Annie removed her foot.
“You’re really, really going to be sorry if you get up,” Annie laughed.
Using the ropes, Sybil pulled herself to her feet.
“We’ll see about that,” Sybil responded, lifting her fists.
The two powerful, good-looking women circle. Annie punched Sybil’s mouth with her fast left jabs — 1, 2! 1, 2! 1, 2! Then a right to the jaw —bam!
Sybil staggered back from the blows. Annie laughed in delight as she closed in.
But Sybil still had her speed. She smashed her right into Annie’s tough abs – wham!
“I barely felt that, you’re so weak,” Annie laughed.
“Yeah? How about this?” Sybil spat back, pounding Annie’s belly again — wham! Again! And again!
Annie tried to cover up, but Sybil was too quick: a left-right to the jaw, a left to the head, another, a right to the jaw! Then lefts and rights to her midsection!
Annie tried to retreat, but Sybil was on her all the way, punching her mercilessly. Another right to the jaw and Annie collapsed.
“Oh, no, we’re not done,” Sybil promised.
Annie tried to get up, and Sybil tugged her to her feet. She punched the taller female repeatedly, eventually hammering her back against the ropes.
“No, stop,” Annie begged. “I give.”
“What? I can’t hear you!” Sybil answered, still pounding the woman as if she were a punching bag.
“Stop, you win ….”
Sybil paused, fists still raised threateningly: “Who’s the winner?”
“You are,” Annie said, her voice barely audible.
“Who’s stronger? Say it,” Sybil continued, lifting her fists and flexing her biceps for her beaten opponent’s benefit.
“You’re stronger than me. Just don’t hit me anymore,” Annie said.
Sybil slammed her right into Annie’s unprotected belly — wham!
“That’s for kicking me,” Sybil said.
Bam! A left to the same place.
“And that’s for thinking you could stand up to me, ever,” the redhead added.
Sybil then cocked back fist and — bam, bam, bam! — punched Annie in the mouth three times in a row. The taller woman staggered, then fell face down.
Down and out!
It was a great fight, and Sybil won by a knockout. The victor then planted her foot on her defeated foe’s back.
Sybil looked over at me, grinning ear to ear.
“Did you have a camera?”