Asuka wiped the blood away from her eyes. A flying superman punch grazed her brow. She quickly dodged it, but not fast enough. She felt the gloved fist slicing her head, a tiny itch like a mosquito bite. Then the sweat and the blood began to mix in her right eye, blocking out her vision on her right side. Sarah Cortez could have struck again taking advantage of this new development. Asuka quickly cleaned her eye, keeping her left arm up to block any more mischief. Her internal clock reminded her there was two minutes left in the round.
The blood kept trickling in, swirling with sweat and stinging her eye. Asuka ignored it, trying to focus on the advice screamed at her from her side of the octagon; Dan Parnell screaming at the top of his lungs, trying to pierce through the dense noise of the crowd.
“Keep you hands up, close the gap. Close the gap.”
Asuka was about six paces away from Sarah with her back almost against the fence. Bad move with Sarah “The Terminator” Cortez closing the gap with a quick low kick and a few jabs. Asuka kept circling, keeping the hands up. She wanted to strike, but she couldn’t. Her body wouldn’t, it was holding her back.
She was afraid.
A left leg swung at her midsection. Asuka bent low to guard her ribs. The leg smacked her right arm with the full force of ten years of Muai Thai training. The impact was like a steel bat had hit her. Asuka’s elbow dug into her ribs with the full force of the kick. She cried out through her mouthguard. She moved quickly away, but Sarah kept coming. Now she knew why Sarah got the nickname, she absolutely would not stop, ever, until Asuka was dead.
One minute left.
Her ribs hurt, blind in her right eye and her heart pounding against her chest. Still, Asuka’s body seized up, refusing to attack. She heard Dan cry out, “Fucking attack, get in there. Attack!.”
Goddamnit, Dan, I want to. But, if I get close she’ll fucking murder me. I can’t win.
Sarah’s hard brown eyes locked in with Asuka’s. Asuka thought she saw a quick smirk cross the woman’s lips. She knew what Asuka was thinking. That’s right bitch, just try to attack. Can’t stop the terminator. Sarah pounced, leaping into the air like a tiger on the attack, a flying roundhouse kick. Asuka almost didn’t notice, the movement was too fast, to swift for her body to calculate how to react.
All she did was ducked.
The foot flew over her head; Sarah landed right in front of her.
Now’s your chance!
The tension was gone, the force that held Asuka back had receded. She looked right into Sarah’s eyes, staring deep into the wide pupils as her right fist fell on Sarah’s jaw. Asuka dropped her punch like she was Thor summoning all the might of Noer for one mighty blow. She drove into the jaw, pushing her body against Sarah’s face, almost losing her balance in the process. The crowd roared at the turn of events. The underdog had upsetted the script, now she was the attacker, the one in control. Sarah wobbled, her legs like stilts now, the glassy look in her eyes like she didn’t know where the fuck she was.
Asuka charged at the Terminator, knocking her ass on the floor. They tumbled to the ground like wrestlers. Asuka was on top, got past Sarah’s guard and pressed her legs tight against Sarah’s body. The face was open and Asuka began raining fist like she was beating up her pillow when she was young. Punch after punch finding their mark, bashing against Sarah’s face. Boom, boom, boom, boom.
“Stop, stop, stop!”
The referee pulled Asuka away from Sarah’s, waving his arm in the air. The bell rang three times; the chime of victory, the chime of defeat.