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i think ive been up since two or something writing this because inspiration just sorta hit me and now its fo in da moanin and i'm zonin' they say i'm posessed it's an omen anyways here have thing -------------------------------------- "You're up, kid. Show them how it's done." No need to tell me twice, I think, my only vocalization a grunt as my begins to play, and I start forwards, heeding it's call. Unlike the high-energy rap/country mix (that was a thing?) that my opponent had chosen, mine was simple, calm, and soothing. Catered more to easing my nerves than firing me up. The jitters were bad enough, this was my debut here. No need to tack on extra buzz to burn myself out with. Save that for when it becomes another day at the office. My face is decidedly poker as I enter the stage itself, jaw tightening in something that probably resembled apprehension just as much as it seriousness. Crazy how full it already is, I marvel, eyes darting to and fro about the contents of the small (but not really) arena, before finally settling upon those eight walls of six-foot high plastic-coated steel cage. Usually it was still a bit sparse this early on in the card. But really, that didn't matter. I can't let the pressure get to me here. Not now. I've come too far. Trained too hard, sunk too much time and effort to even consider turning back from here. Don't get the wrong idea, though. No self-respecting fighter of any caliber would go so far as to actually voluntarily back down from a fight, on the day of no less. No, what I meant was that I could not-- WOULD not, allow myself to perform at anything but my best and give anything less than my all. While I'm busy making these vows, I suddenly found myself in front of the Cut man and one of the refs. Athletic Commision staff making the final bits of physical preparation for me as make my own in my head, about to march to war. My shirt comes off, revealing a lithe, somewhat muscular but not exactly big physique-- not that I have any care in the world how aesthetic my body was at the moment. Context is everything, after all. My gloves get a quick tape job around the wrists--Blue, same as my corner. Did that mean I was the underdog here? I couldn't remember, and decide not to waste time worrying over it even as the ref applies vaseline to key areas on my face--reducing their chance of becoming nasty cuts on a grazing blow from a glove. Heavy on the borws and nose, that made sense. Where was I? Helpfully, the ref points me towards the cage's open door. I nod my thanks and in spite of myself, grin. That's one answer. As I make those three normally space yet simultaneously massive steps, I remind myself of one important fact. I didn't come here to worry about whether or not some random people were under the impression that I was going to lose. In fact, I came to do just the opposite. I greet the canvas with a hearty stomp, and its light springyness welcomes me cordially as I begin to circle, getting a feel for the unique sensation of soft spring under the balls of my feet. The mats they use in an octagon are hard to replicate the feeling of, and hey, getting familiar with your terrain is never a downside. I stop in front of my corner, bringing it to a rest, and watch the announcer take the center of the octagon. Then the cage door closes. Then the lights hit. Ooooh boy. The pressure is here, people. Thankfully I can keep my outward composure, but even as the announcer screams our names into the microphone with wicked enthusiasm, I feel my heart begin to pump and my legs go heavy. As the referee draws us together and does the usual "we've been over the rules, obey my commands at all times, fight a good clean fight" deal, I can see him staring straight into me with hard, unforgiving brown eyes. Sizing me up. And I knew that even through all the pressure I was feeling in that moment, I was doing the exact same to him. Sizing him up. Planning. We touch gloves at the ref's prompt and go back to our corners, his eyes never leaving me and mine him. He was about my height, but a bit more sturdily built. If I remembered right, there was no one area he truly excelled at, but he could do everything pretty well and had the guts to get after it with wild abandon. Combination like that suits me just fine The ref points to me "Are you ready?" I nod. To my opponent. "Are you ready?" He nods. A clap followed by a sharp chop downward. "LET'S GET IT ON!" We both advance, meeting eachother in the center and beginning to circle, back and forth, feeling eachother out. My head sways back and forth as I bounce on the balls of my feet in my stance. Not exaggeratedly so, of course, that'll just throw you off balance, but just enough to make it a more difficult target for him to hit. My guard is disciplined and high, right hand always near my chin and left out further, ready to parry, gauge range, be the leader in the dance. After what feels like an eternity of this, I elect to make the first move, ficking a probing jab towards his face. He's aware and parries it with his rear hand, stepping in and slamming a lead left hook into my guarding forearm in return an instant later. Not to be outdone, I counter that with a low kick, which unfortunately isn't the type that would do serious damage right away due to the distance, but still, my shin smacks into his newly presented thigh with enough force to make him think twice. And that's got the scales tipped in my favor. I move laterally a little bit, cutting angles left and right and every way in between, trying to work out a good one for an attack, but the other man is diligent and keeps track of me all the while, typically cutting me off and slowly inching me to the fence, peppering me with jabs and one-twos of his own to keep my defenses busy. "Combinations kid, combinations! Keep working that leg!" my coach calls, and nod mentally. It's a good way to go. I circle right, then jerk left and duck as he gets impatient and wings a big overhand right that whiffs over the top of my head. Coincidentally, I had also found my window of oppurtunity. He re-orients himself as quick as he can in my direction, but by that time I've already pounced upon him with a jab that catches him square in the nose, interrupting his thought processes just in time for the following cross, picture perfect with all the straightness and hip rotation a man could ever ask for, to come crashing home into his chin, wobbling his legs and putting him, in scientific terms, "On Queer Street." But I don't let up here. No, I don't even pause to admire my handiwork mid-combination. Even as his knees buckle from the shot before and his hands cover his face to avoid any further rattling, my left hand stabs upwards and into his right side-- a shovel hook, it's called, and straight into the liver. His eyes fairly bug and he, a guy known to be tough and gutsy as any of them, is visibly wincing and fighting to not crumple right there. A testament as fine as any to how much a good hit to the liver hurts. At this point, it almost seems like the beautiful doozy of the leg kick that finishes off the particular combination I was throwing is a tacked-on afterthought, despite the frankly excellent technique involved. The lead foot is turned outside, drawing the massive rotational power hips into it, the guard stays on point throughout even though it isn't even necessary, the shin collides mightly with the meat of my opponents thigh... everything was done right. A shame I couldn't always throw it that well. I quickly reset my stance as he begins to circle out to my left, attempting to escape the onslaught. I am disciplined in my pursuit of the finish, but no less ruthless because of it. I step my lead foot outward, squaring up to cut his movement off, and uncork a merciless lead left hook of my own onto him. His hands come up, but a tad too late, and the powerful blow drills through and hits, albeit unclean. In a panic, he tries the other way out, hoping that I would try and chase after him. I have no need. My foot twists outward a smidgen once more, and with practiced fluidity, the all too terribly tough right shinbone of mine scythes upwards and cracks him straight in the dome, removing him from his consciousness and sending him crumpling, limp like a ragdoll, onto the canvas. Lights out. No doubt about it. I raise my hands even as the ref leaps in to wave the fight's official closure, and all at once a wave of sound sweeps me away as I suddenly realize Oh Holy ###### I just got a First-Round Headkick Knockout in my debut is this real? It all took a grand total of three minutes and seventeen seconds. I walk over to the other man, unable to help the smile plastered upon my face as he comes to, and help him up as we trade small well-wishes, "good job"s, "great fight"s and the like. Violent though they may be, these were called combat sports for a reason. I always respect my opponents, in victory, and in defeat. Besides, I don't think I have it in me to be angry or nasty at anything right now. All that pressure melting away has left me light as a feather. -------------------------------------------------------- So yeah leave feedback and heartfelt questions as to why here praise yeezy