Kergan steps forward into the ring. Alois is bouncing back and forth on the balls of his feet. Kergan puts her feet shoulder width apart and puts her fists in front of her cheeks. They move in a circle, too far apart to even touch. Alois throws out a taunt with his hand. But Kergan doesn’t react.
A random voice from the crowd yells out, “Aye, this ain’t a dance—you gonna fight or what?”
The rest of the crowd cheers, agreeing.
Cadyn cups her hands over her mouth and yells, “Attack, don’t retreat!”
Kergan pushes forward and tries a couple of punches but is easily blocked by Alois. She takes another swing, and before Kergan knows what happened, she’s flipped over on her back. She blinks her eyes rapidly and sighs through her nose.
Alois leans over her and tries to pick her up by the hair. Kergan responds by punching Alois right in the chest. It’s hard enough to stun him, buying Kergan time to nip up. She attacks with a series of jabs and kicks. One or two land, but mostly they wear her out. Alois sweeps Kergan to the ground and starts trying to stomp her, forcing Kergan to roll almost out of the ring.
Kergan pops up and gets her bearings. Then Alois charges at Kergan, who shifts her body to the right. As she shifts, she catches him with her leg.
Micel raises a fist in the air. “There it is, girl!”
Cadyn stands with her arms crossed and shouts a simple instruction. “Pounce!”
Kergan jumps on Alois’s back and wraps her arms around his neck. It was like a hold Cadyn used whenever she spared with Kergan. Alois collapses to the ground, frothing at the mouth, gasping for air. Kergan can’t even hear him yell, “Linnan!” She holds tight until Kergan and Micel pry her off.
Kergan is shaking, her eyes wide. Cadyn holds her by the cheeks and looks into those same eyes. “Relax your breathing.”
Finally, Kergan begins breathing normally.
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