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  • Writer's pictureDexter Hastings

Saturday Book Club Fear No Foe Chapter 2

Here is Chapter 2 of my book Fear No Foe hope you are enjoying it please click on the comment button at the end and tell me your thoughts on the book.

If you haven't read chapter 1 yet just put fear no foe in the search engine on the home page.


Fear No Foe


Shay rushed home after the gym to tell his Mom and Dad the news. Shays Dad was nearly in tears with pride and joy, he said “Son this is your chance to be great, go make us proud”.

His Mom just looked up from the magazine she was reading and said “Well I suppose I’ll have to come to this one seems it’s the final” and went back to reading her magazine.

There was a week to go before the fight and the whole of Newtown was buzzing, all the lads from the gym wanted to go to the show. All the Topside firm was going down to support him and everyone from the pubs that his Dad drank at were going to make the trip down to London for the finals.

The Birmingham Mail, the local newspaper in the city did a really good peace on Shay and his quest for the British Amateur Title. Shay had become a mini celebrity round his area; Case’s gym started to attracted new lads from outside of the area, and also started to get some big sponsors backing it. With Shays new found fame came something that could well distract him, “Girls”. In fact 1 girl in particular, Emma Winehouse a girl from Shays area. she was the same age as Shay 15, but with the body of a 21 year old and stunning looks to match. Shay had fancied her for a while, but had never had the guts to talk to her before. Shays only real contact with girls was Kelly his friend and next door neighbor, but they were best friends and nothing like that had ever crossed either of their minds.

Shay didn’t have to find the guts to talk to girls anymore, the girls wanted to talk to him.

Two days before the big title fight, Shay had gone for a quick run after school when someone called out to him from across the road. Shay stopped to see who was calling him, it was Emma, and shecalled him over. Shay walked across the road nervously and said “Hello”. Emma asked him about his fight and did he think he was going to win.

Shay smiled and said “Yeah I’m pretty sure I can do it, but the lad I’m fighting has won it for the last 2 years, so he is really good”.

Emma just smiled and moved towards him and said “Well if you do win, maybe you could take me out, when you get back, you could take me to the pictures or something”.

Shay very nervously said “Yeah that sounds good to me”.

Emma gave him a kiss on the cheek and said “Well, come and see me after you win”.

Shay continued his run with a really big smile on his face.

Shay was going down to London early in the morning the day of the fight with Kenny and his Mom and Dad. Shay spent the night before the fight with his friend Kelly; all Shay kept going on about was what Emma had said to him and how much he liked her.

Kelly just told him to concentrate on the fight and forget about Emma until after the fight. Kelly knew Emma well they went to the same school, but you wouldn’t call them friends. Emma was one of them girls who was good looking and knew it, if you didn’t have anything to benefit her she didn’t want to know you. Kelly was worried that Emma only wanted Shay for what he could do for her, but she couldn’t say anything to him as she could see Shay was really keen on her.

Shay was up bright and early the day of the fight; Kenny was picking him and his Mom and Dad up at 10 o’clock. The Newtown lads were going down on the train and there was 3 coaches going from the local pub his Dad drank at. Shay, Kenny and his Mom and Dad got to London at about half 12 and went straight to where the show was being held for the weigh in. It was being held at the famous York Hall, Bethnal Green, ‘The Home of Champions’. They were expecting a capacity crowd of 1,200 for this show as it was the biggest night in the British Amateur boxing calendar.

Shay weighed in and was bang on the weigh as usual; Gary Britain had weighed in earlier and was in weight as well. The doctor had gave them the once over to make sure they were fit enough to fight, both of them passed so the fight was on.

As Shay was walking into the main room to have a look around, he heard someone call his name out.

It was his opponent Gary Britain.

Gary came up to him looked him up and down and said “So you’re Shay then?”

Shay replied “Yeah I’m Shay, you must be Gary”, trying to make out he didn’t know who Gary was.

Gary then said “Well I hope you take it all in Shay, I heard how you got here, you’re just a replacement and I’ve beaten Ronnie Docker 3 times before easily, so I don’t think you will be any trouble”.

Shay stared at him just trying to keep his temper as he knew chinning him here wouldn’t be a good idea.

Shay Smiled and replied “Well Gary I may be the replacement, but the reason Ronnie ain't here is because I broke 3 of his ribs in the semi-finals, so you want to watch out”.

Gary looked right back at Shay and in a very cocky voice said “Look I have won this British title for 2 years running and I don’t intend to lose it to some northern monkey like you”.

Shay replied “Northern monkey? I’m from the centre of England you idiot”.

Gary jumped back in with “It doesn’t matter where you’re from;you’re going down mate end of”!

Shay and Gary started to square up to each other, but Shays Mom came just before anything happened and said “Is everything o.k.Son?”

Before Shay could reply, Gary jumped in again. He said to Shays Mom “Hello, you must be Shays Mom, I’m Gary Britain, I was just wishing you Son good luck for tonight, I’m sure it will be a great fight”.

Shays Mom replied “Well nice to meet you Gary and I’m sure the best boy will win”.

Gary smiled and in a very sarcastic voice said “I’m sure he will, it was really nice to meet you Miss Dempsey, good look tonight Shay”. Gary walked away with a very smug grin on his face. Shays Mom then said “What a nice boy that Gary Britain is”.

Shay replied “Yeah Mom he’s great” in a very annoyed voice.

Shays Mom then said “It’s a shame”.

Shay asked his Mom inquisitively “What’s a shame Mom?” Shays Mom replied “It’s a shame that Gary Britain is such a handsome boy and you’re going to smash him up”,

Shay looked shocked at what his Mom had just said and asked “MomI thought you were against all this?”

His Mom replied “Well if you’re going to do it, you best do it right Son”.

Shay hugged his Mom and said “I’ll try Mom. I’ll try”.

Shay, Kenny and his Mom and Dad went off to have something to eat and see the sights of London, Shay had been to London a few times to box, but had never got to see the sights as Kenny used to just turn up at his house after school and say “You fancy fighting tonight”?

Shay would always say “Yes” and off he would go, he sometimes wouldn’t get back till the early hours of the morning.

They went to see the main sights London had to offer, Big Ben, Buckingham palace and London Bridge. They had a real nice meal and Shay seemed well relaxed. They got back to the York Hall, Bethnal Green at about 6 o’clock in the evening, the show didn’t stat till 7, but the doors had already opened. Shay and Kenny went to the changing room to get ready. Shay was on 3rd on the card, so would be on about 8 o’clock. Shay was well relaxed and when Kenny took him on the pads to warm him up he looked sharper than ever.

Kenny said “You’re up for this ain't you Shay”?

Shay replied “To right Ken, he thinks he’s it! Giving me the big one earlier, I’m going to knock the cocky Cockney fucker out”.

Kenny laughed and just said “That’s what I wanted to hear”.

Shay was warmed up and was ready to go; he got the call to come out and walked into the main room. By now the Hall was nearly full, there was a massive roar as Shay walked to the ring, over 200 people had made the trip down from Birmingham to support Shay and were letting the rest of the crowd know who they had come to support.

Shay acknowledged his supporters and stood in his corner waiting for Britain to come out.

Gary came out to a massive cheer from the crowd, he walked up to the ring looking really confident, and he slipped though the ropes and danced around the ring.

Shay just looked at Kenny and said “What a prat”.

Kenny laughed and said” Just focus Shay”.

The Ref brought them to the centre of the ring; he gave them their final instructions Britain was smiling at Shay saying “You’re going down, you’re going down”.

Shay just stared at Britain and though his gum shield said “Fuck you, you Cockney cunt”!

The Ref told them to “Shut up” and they went back to their corners.

Shay came out for the first round with a double jab, Britain just parried the 1st jab slipped the 2nd jab, and hit Shay with a sweet 1, 2. Shay kept coming forward, but Britain just kept on his jab and showed his class.

Shay stayed with it and when Britain went on the attack, Shay slipped under his jab and went to work with some hurtful body shots. Britain reeled back in pain, but stayed on his jab, Shay moved in with a sharp double jab then a straight right to the body. This put Britain onto the ropes, so Shay went for the Case’s gym special, left to the body, then head and a straight right to finish. Shay caught him with the body shot and the left hook to the head, but Britain had done his homework and knew what was coming next and just slipped off the ropes making Shay miss, and caught him with a thunderous right hand counter. Shay was caught clean on the side of the jaw, just under his head guard, but somehow managed to keep it together, luckily for Shay the bell went to end the 1st round.

Shay went back to his corner still dazed; Kenny sat him down and sprayed water in his face.

Kenny said “Right he caught you good at the end of that round, butthe rest of it was close. Just keep it together and you’ll get him”.

Shay replied “He hits hard, the bloke’s pure class”.

Ken just said “But so are you Shay, so are you, so go out there and prove it, out class him”.

Shay got up for the 2nd round still a bit groggy. Shay came out a bit slower than the 1st round; Britain was just circling him looking as fresh as a daisy. Britain was being a bit too cocky and stayed on his jab trying to look good. Shay just kept his distance which gave him time to clear his head. Britain was looking in control and his confidence got the better of him, he stepped in with a 1, 2, but Shay slipped the jab, parried the right and caught Britain with an uppercut from hell. How Britain stayed on his feet was a miracle, Britain moved back and Shay moved in with some hard hooks to the body and head.

Britain grabbed on for dear life and tied Shay up in a clinch; the Ref stepped in and broke them up. Shay was now in control and really took it to Britain for the rest of the round. When the bell went to end the 2nd round, Shay went back to his corner and sat down.

Shay said to Kenny “Was that any better Ken?”

Kenny just smiled and said “That was great kid, but it was still a close round as he controlled the start of it. Just keep it going Shay you can do it this”.

Shay nodded and got up for the 3rd and final round, the Ref called them to the centre of the ring and Shay and Britain touched gloves. Britain didn’t look as fresh as he did for the last round; he got his jab working and was just trying to control the centre of the ring. Shaycame in with a very sharp double jab and straight right that nearly took Britain’s head off. Blood poured from above Britain’s right eye, Shay had cut him. Shay got him on the ropes and pounded away at his body; the Ref jumped in and told them to stop boxing. Shay walked to a neutral corner and thought that the Ref would stop the fight, he didn’t. He called the doctor over to have a look at the cut; the Ref, doctor and Britain’s trainer were looking at Gary’s cut eye.

Kenny shouted over to Shay and said “Shay if they let him carry on there going to give it to him. Knock the fucker out”!

The doctor had a good look at Britain’s cut, chatted to the Ref for a second and said he could box on. There was only 30 seconds of the round to go, Britain had caught his breath and got back on his jab, Shay just went for it. He knew if it went to the end he’d lose, so moved in fast and sharp with a jab and another straight right catching Britain clean again.

Britain fell back on to the ropes, but Shay wasn’t going to leave it to the Ref to step in and stop it. Shay landed a right hook to Britain’s body and then one to the head. Britain crumbled to the floor in agony from the body shot; the Ref didn’t even bother counting and waved Britain out.

The place went mental, all the people who had come down were cheering and screaming with joy. Shay had done it; he was Junior Welterweight Champion of Britain. Kenny jumped into the ring to congratulate Shay.

Kenny hugged Shay and said “Well done kid, I’m proud of you”. Shay replied “Thanks Ken, but I think I’ve broken my hand again”. Ken said “Come on Son, let’s get you out of here”.

Kenny kept the celebrations in the ring short as he could, and got Shay to the nearest hospital as soon as he could.

The x-ray confirmed that Shay had broken his hand again in the same places that he had broken it before. They put it in a cast and Shay, Kenny and his Mom and Dad made the long trip back to Birmingham. Shay was still in high spirits; he had just won the British title and beaten the number 1 boxer in his age and weight division. It didn’t really bother Shay that he had broken his hand, as he had done it so many times before; it was second nature to him. He was turning 16 next week and his Dad had planned a big party for him, and now it would be a double celebration. The day after they got back from the fight, Shay was woken up by his Mom calling him down stairs.

The local newspaper wanted to do a piece on him and take some pictures of him at Case’s gym. They interviewed him at his home and then they all went down to the gym, waiting outside was Shays new number 1 fan, Emma. She had heard that the press were coming to the gym and wanted to be a part of it.

Shay went up to her and said “Hi what you doing here?”

Emma said “Oh I just came to show you some support”.

Before Shay could say anything else, the reporter asked “So Shay who’s this then is it your girlfriend”?

With that Emma put her arms around Shays neck gave him a kiss and said “Yes I’m his girlfriend and I’m so proud of him”.

Shay looked a bit shocked, but as he fancied the hell out of Emma he just went along with it.

They all went into the gym; the reporter interviewed Kenny and took loads of pictures of Shay. 90 percent of the pictures Emma managed to get into, the story was in the next edition of the paper, right on the back page of the sports section.

It read ‘Dempsey “Hammers” Britain’

The story took the whole of the back page with a big picture with Shay and Emma in it with the caption; Champion Shay with his proud girlfriend Emma Winehouse.

Emma had even got a quote in the piece saying “I always knew Shay could do it I’m so proud of him”

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