Champion Moves

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Chapter 12

Fight night. The smell of sweat and blood. The grunts and groans of the fighters. The sound of flesh crashing into flesh. God how she loved it! Sitting in her dressing room, Lyra zoned out with her fight night playlist blaring through her earbuds. Her eyes were closed as her uncle got her prepared for her bout. Hitting her zone, she went through her rituals, feeling the adrenaline begin to buzz through her veins. Dante stood behind her, rubbing her shoulders. Martin tapped her shoulder, signaling it was time. Bouncing on the balls of her feet, she exited the room and made her way to the ring.

“Our first contender tonight is a young woman hailing from Chicago, IL in the United States. Making her debut here in the UK under the Maxwell Group banner, she packs a punch as the niece of the legendary El Diablo! Entering the ring at five foot ten, one hundred thirty pounds of solid badass, I give you Lyra “La Diabla” Salvadooooooor!” Mateo had chosen Nonpoint’s Ruthless as her entry music. Nice choice, Tio, she thought to herself. With a feral grin, she descended the gangplank and entered the ring, fists in the air. Tossing her robe to Martin, she threw her long braid over her shoulder and prepared to meet her opponent.

“Her opponent tonight is the reigning UK women’s bantamweight champion, your favorite and mine! Coming in at five foot nine, one hundred thirty five pounds of ‘kick your ass’, Kate “Death Strike” Crenshaaaaaaaw!” Kate made her entrance to I Prevail’s Come and Get It. Lyra smiled. Winking at Lyra, Kate strutted around the ring getting the crowd in a riotous uproar. Oh yeah, this was going to be a good fight! The women met in the center of the ring.

“Let’s see what you got, Yank,” Kate said with a grin in her thick Cockney accent. Tapping fists, the women separated and the fight began. Mateo paced back and forth, watching Kate intently. The women tested each other, dodging and feinting to try to gauge any weaknesses. They danced for a few minutes before Kate threw the first punch. Lyra blocked it and followed up with a jab to Kate’s ribs. Circling again, Lyra cracked her neck and rolled her shoulders. It was time to get this fight started. She zoned in on Kate like a hungry wolf and went on the attack. The speed of her punches surprised the other fighter. Kate hadn’t expected Lyra to move with such speed and agility. She’d heard La Diabla was fast but this was insane.

Before she could move into an offensive position and get a hit in, Lyra had her against the ropes delivering a series of punches in rapid succession, leaving her breathless. Thankfully, the bell rang and the fighters separated. Round one was done and now Kate could catch her breath. They took their spots in their respective corners, listening to their coaches and refreshing for the next round.

“She relies on her right hook too much,” Mateo said. “Stay on her left. You have equal strength on both sides.” Lyra nodded, slammed her mouthpiece back in and headed back to the center of the ring.

“She is fast,” Kate breathed through the blossoming pain in her ribcage. She would be sporting a sizeable bruise later. “I didn’t realize anyone could move that fast!” Her coach snorted.

“Well maybe if you would pull your head out of your ass and actually fight, you might win.” Chuckling, Kate put her mouthpiece back in. In a breath, she whirled and planted her famous Death Strike move on the man who’d been her coach for five years. His head snapped back and he crumpled to the ground.

“By the way, you’re fired,” she said. Rolling her shoulders, she slammed her fists together and joined Lyra in the ring. A renewed vigor saw her lunge at Lyra, throwing precise kicks and punches to her midsection. Lyra blocked them but Kate was quick with her legs. She grazed Lyra’s cheek with her heel, sending Lyra slightly off balance. But Lyra quickly righted herself and rounded on Kate.

Termine isso!” Mateo shouted from the corner. That’s all Lyra needed to unleash her fury on Kate. She delivered a punch to Kate’s sternum, sending her flying back into the ropes. Kate was winded and struggling to regain her balance. Lyra went in for the kill. Catching Kate on the chin with a roundhouse kick, Lyra dropped her opponent unconscious to the mat. Raising her fists in the air, she roared like an ancient warrior because that’s what she was. A warrior through and through. Breathing heavily, she knelt down beside Kate to check on her. Kate took a deep breath and opened her eyes, letting loose a loud groan.

“Holy hell, girl!” she chuckled. She took Lyra’s hand and both fighters rose together. “You have got to show me that move! I thought an elephant hit me in the chest! That was brutal!” Laughing together, they hugged with Kate raising Lyra’s hand as the winner. She grabbed the mic from the emcee. “Well deserved win by an ace fighter! But,” she said, side eyeing Lyra with a wicked grin, “I’m going to want to get that belt back.” Kate produced a heavy belt and fastened it around Lyra’s waist.

“Any time, girl. You’re a hell of a competitor.” She accepted the win with grace, just like she always did. Mateo crashed into the ring, lifting her in the air in victory. He was so excited he was speaking Portuguese. Lyra threw her fists in the air as he carried her around the ring. Finally setting her down, she took Kate’s hand and the two women walked out out of the ring together as friends. Lyra suddenly found herself lifted off the ground again by strong tattooed arms and her lips captured in a deep primal kiss that took her breath away. Pulling away, she rested her forehead against Dante’s.

“You were fucking amazing, baby!” She didn’t pay any attention to the camera crews zoning in on her lip lock with the sexy beast who was holding her. The lights from the camera flashes were a blur because all she saw was him. She giggled and wrapped her legs around his waist, kissing him to oblivion. He carried her off to her dressing room with her laughing uncle and coach in tow. Mara and Cherry were waiting for her and pounced on her the minute Dante set her down. Mara was also speaking rapid fire Portuguese. The Salvador siblings often did that when they were overcome with extreme bouts of anger or joy. Lyra was glad this time it was joy.

The MacGregor boys stepped into the room elbowing their way to Lyra where they promptly sandwiched her between them.

“Oi hands off my woman!” Dante growled with a big grin. Lyra could feel the heat starting in her core. Hearing him call her his woman in that sexy accent of his was doing funny things to her libido. The twins laughed and placed sloppy loud kisses on her cheeks. Swatting at them, they left the room but not before Riordan grabbed hold of Cherry’s waist. He tossed her over his shoulder and carried her giggling form away. Looks like Lyra needed to have a conversation with the pint sized pistol about a certain redheaded fighter.

Mara slipped into mother mode and began shooing the men from the room. “Come on, gentlemen. Let’s give Lyra some room to breathe. She needs to shower and get ready for the after party. Shoo! Out!” Dante gave Lyra a sweet kiss and left with Mateo. Martin winked at Mara, causing her cheeks to stain pink.

“Well, well, well,” Lyra teased. “Looks like my coach has a thing for my mother. Whatever will I do?” Mara rolled her eyes, then burst out laughing.

“Come on, you. Go get showered and ready. We’ll be waiting for you outside.” Walking toward the door, she gave a sly smile over her shoulder as she opened it. “I can’t help it if I’m irresistible.” With a wink and a girlish giggle, she exited.

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