18 November 2012

Chapter 37

"You bastard!" I screamed at Tucker for striking Josh's injured shoulder. I rose from my seat but Jacob yanked my chain, pulling me back down.

"Don't!" I snarled and grabbed the leash, snatching it from Jacob's grip. I stood again and leaned over the safety wall to call out to the fighters.


Josh had rolled onto his side to protect his injured shoulder from another attack. Tucker dropped a knee onto the side of Josh's neck, pinning his head to the ground. He punched Josh in the ribs and barely gave him time to recover before repeating the blow.

Josh curled his knees protectively into his chest but before he could try anything defensive, Tucker grabbed Josh's upper leg and hauled it into the air, pulling him into a groin stretch. Head pinned, leg's stretched wide, Josh lay trapped.

I could see Josh panting, his breath short and sharp as he fought the pain. He swung a fist blindly behind him but there was no power in it. It tapped Tucker's upper arm without creating so much as a flinch.

Tucker pulled Josh's leg up higher, hugging it with both arms now now to maximise the stretch. My eyes watered at the sight of of the enforced leg split.

Josh brought his lower leg up, snapped his legs closed with a sideward arch befitting a gymnast. As his thighs snapped together over Tucker's arms, Tucker jerked back with surprise, allowing Josh to force his lower body down. Tucker unbalanced and Josh palmed Tucker's knee, lifting it off his neck. Tucker fell sidewards and Josh rolled in the opposite direction.

Rubbing his neck, he stumbled to his knees. Tucker rose too and struck out with a karate chop at Josh's throat. Josh ducked, barely escaping the killer blow. He landed a jab at Tucker's underarm in response and followed with a knee in Tucker's chest. Tucker went down and Josh straddled his chest, pinning Tucker's arms with his knees.

He placed his fingers on Tucker's throat and uttered a few unheard words. His face told of the threat he was issuing however. The moment Josh removed his hands from Tucker's throat, the muscleman head-butted his groin. Tucker freed his arms to lock a pec claw on Josh.

Josh stiffened unable to stop himself from being forced onto the ground. Tucker rolled on top, maintaining the hold and smirking as Josh writhed under him.

Releasing one hand from the claw, Tucker punched Josh's injured shoulder again, then resumed the double pec claw before punching the hurt shoulder again. He alternated the moves, determined to exhaust Josh completely.

Josh kneed Tucker's butt and thrashed until he managed to knock Tucker off. He crawled onto all fours, only to have Tucker grab him from behind, pulling him down to a sitting position. Tucker's legs wrapped around Josh's waist and squeezed while his arms were pulled behind him.

Josh's mouth hung open and I could see him trying to pull himself forward.  Tucker was leaning backwards though, using his body weight to force Josh's arms straight up and back. Tucker's thick legs squeezed against Josh's ribs crushing him over and above the shoulder-wrenching arm hold.

Josh planted his feet on the ground and pressed up with his heels, raising himself off the ground and kicking himself over Tucker. He dropped onto Tucker, his arms coming down by side. Twisting his wrists free, Josh attempted to break away but Tucker's legs were still firmly locked around his waist. He fell, face up, onto the ground with Tucker now side-on, squeezing his muscular legs into Josh's stomach and lower back.

Josh winced, his breath cut short by the leg lock around his midsection. Tucker leaned up and punched Josh in the gut. Josh reached out to attack him but Tucker forced his inner arm down, pinning it under his body. Tucker punched again then grabbed at Josh's outer arm, twisting it over Josh's head.  Josh bent sideways at an awkward angle, immobilised and exposed as Tucker went to work on his torso with a combination of pec claws, punches and sharp slaps to the chest with an open palm.

To add insult to injury, Tucker slapped Josh across the face a few times, then reached down and lifted one of Josh's legs into the air, giving Josh even less leverage than before.

Josh used the distraction of applying the new hold to yank his twisted arm free. He swung it over in one smooth movement, chopping Tucker in the side of the neck. Tucker dropped away, clutching his neck as Josh escaped to a safe distance.

Using his advantage, Josh planted a foot on Tucker's throat. Tucker gagged, grabbing it. Josh used his full weight but Tucker lifted more than that. He muscled free, lifting Josh's foot from his throat knocking him off balance with a twist.

Josh dropped to the ground and immediately jumped to his feet, but suddenly he was limping. Tucker had injured his ankle!

"Josh!" I gasped, not knowing if his ankle was broken or just sore. Either way, he hopped as they both circled each other again.

When Tucker launched himself at Josh, they smashed back into the wall of the ring. Tucker pinned Josh's arms to the wall and rammed a barrage of knees into Josh's ribs. With only one foot on the ground, Josh could barely respond, receiving every blow full-force.

Tucker threw him to the ground and Josh struggled to all fours, keeping his injured ankle off the ground. Tucker grabbed Josh by the shoulders, pulling him upright. He knelt on Josh's injured ankle and as Josh cried out, Tucker wrapped an arm around his throat while his other hand wrapped around his chest to begin pounding endlessly into Josh's injured shoulder. Josh screamed and this time it was heard over the crowd.

Without thinking, I dove over the safety barrier into the pit, latching onto Tucker with a barrage of fists to his head and arms. Tucker swung a fist back, hitting me in the cheek. I reeled backwards, stumbling to the ground, barely aware of the deafening shrieks of the excited onlookers. My face throbbed as I faltered to my feet but suddenly strong arms wrapped around me, pushing me down to the ground. Jacob was on top of me, holding me in place.


I struck out at him in desperation, hitting him in the face before he managed to pin my arms to my side with a bear hug from behind. He turned me to face the other battling couple, leaving me helpless while I watched Josh's unfolding demise…

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