Saturday Book Club - Fear No Foe Chapter 4
After Shay had put down the phone, he went and told his Mom and Dad, they were so pleased for him.
Shay’s Dad said “Son we are so proud of you, whatever happens in 2 weeks time”.
Shay just replied “Dad what do you mean whatever happens, I’m going to beat him”.
His Dad then said “I know you will son, just don’t want to tempt faith”.
Shay’s Mom didn’t say much she told him that she was proud of him and gave him a big hug. Shay went straight round to Emma’s house to tell her the news, she seemed quite pleased for him, but seemed to want to asked him something.
Shay asked her what was wrong, and then said “I thought you would have been pleased”.
Emma looked at Shay and said “I am pleased for you Shay, but I was just wondering when you will start getting paid for fighting, we got to start thinking of the future”.
Shay looked at Emma, smiled and said “Em if I win this fight and I do well at the Olympics I will be making loads of money”.
Emma smiled at this, but then said “there are a lot of ifs, what happens if you don’t win?”
Shay paused for a second and replied “I haven’t thought about not winning, but if I don’t win then I’ll just turn pro and take it from there”.
Emma gave him a kiss and said “Well you better win then, I love you, but I don’t want to be skint all my life”.
Shay replied “look I love you too and I’m going to win, but if somehow I don’t we will be far from skint, trust me”.
Emma smiled and said “Oh, Well just make sure you win”.
He left her house and went straight to Case’s Gym to see Kenny. Kenny had got his hands on some of Gary Britain’s fights and he wanted to watch them through with Shay. They started looking through Britain’s fights and they could both see how much Britain had improved from the time Shay beaten him 3 years before. Kenny pointed out a lot of his strengths but couldn’t find many weaknesses; Kenny reckoned the Middleweight division suited Britain well.
Shay just looked at Kenny and said “So I’m fucked then Ken, I’ve got no chance”.
Kenny stood up looked Shay straight in the eye and said “I never, never want to hear you say that again, you have come way too far to think like that, yes Britain has improved, but so have you. You have grown in to a man and you have been hitting like one since you were 14”.
Shay replied “But look how good he is, he’s pure class”.
Kenny said with a stern voice “Yeah he is Shay, but so are you, the final is over 4, 2 minute rounds, hand on heart Shay I don’t think he can cope with you for that long and I know he ain’t going to knock you out”. Kenny put his hands on both sides of the chair Shay was sitting on and leant down to Shay and said in a calm voice “You can do this son, I got no doubts”.
Shay thanked Kenny, but before he could say anything else there was a loud knock at the gyms doors. Ken told Shay to go see who it is and tell them they were closed. Shay opened the front doors, there was a smartly dressed man in his 50’s with a big cigar in his mouth, Shay looked at him and said “Alright mate, were closed”.
The man smiled and replied in a cockney accent “Do I look like I have come here to train son, I’m here to see Kenny Case the owner”. Shay asked him “Who shall I say wants him?”
Shay recognized the man from somewhere but just couldn’t put his finger on where.
The man replied “Tell Kenny that Frank Goldsten wants a word with him”, as soon as Shay heard his name he knew who he was.
Frank Goldsten is the top boxing promoter in Britain and a very big influence in world boxing as well. His company had produced loads of British and even World Champions and at this time had 3 British Champions and 1 world Champion in its stable. Frank had put on some of the biggest events in England and around the world promoting his Light Welter Weight Champion and one of Shay’s boxing hero’s Richie Hatter.
Shay apologized for keeping him at the door and called him in, Shay called Kenny to come out of his office.
Kenny came out saying “I told you to tell them we were closed”.
Kenny stopped in his tracks as he saw who was standing there and said “Fuck me Frank Goldsten”.
Frank replied “How you doing Ken, it’s been a long time”.
Kenny walked over to Frank and said “not fucking long enough Frank, what the fuck do you what”.
Frank looked a bit stunned at how hostile Kenny was and replied “Come on Ken there’s no need to be like that, I’m here to offer your lad Shay a pro contract, win or lose at the finals”.
Kenny laughed and said “Have you ever seen Shay box?”
Frank replied “No, but I have had some of my people look at him and they have told me he is top draw”.
Kenny said “Well why don’t you talk to him then he’s standing next to you”.
Frank just smiled at Kenny and said “I know this is Shay, come on Ken what kind of mug do you think I am”.
Frank turned to Shay and said “You alright Shay how you doing, is there some where we can talk”.
Before Shay could reply to Frank, Kenny shouted “You 2, my office now”. Shay looked at Frank and said “Kenny’s office would be good”.
They walked into Kenny’s office, Kenny was sitting behind his desk and said to Frank “O.k. sit down Frank and tell me and Shay what you’re offering”.
Frank sat down and started his offer “What am I offering is a dream ticket out of this place and straight to the big time. If Shay wins the finals and goes to the Olympics and does well I can guarantee Shay a 50 grand signing on fee with Goldsten Promotions and 250 grand for his first 10 fights and if he wins his first ten fights I’ll get him a crack at the British title”.
Shay was just sitting there gob smacked, he could not believe the money Frank was talking about.
Kenny went to say something, but before he could Frank jumped in and continued “I know what you’re going to say Ken, what if he wins a medal or even gold, well if Shay does that it will be the same deal with 10 fights but 100 grand signing on fee and a guaranteed 500 grand for his first 10 fights. I can’t say fairer than that can I”
Kenny lent back in his chair in deep thought then replied “So what happens if Shay loses the finals, what you going to offer him then?” Frank smiled a coy smile and replied “You’re a shrude man Ken, very shrude man, if Shay signs before the finals and god forbid somehow loses, I am prepared to offer Shay a 20 grand signing on fee and a 10 fight contract at 5 grand a fight and if he wins them all a title fight”. Kenny pondered for a second and said “So what have you offered the ‘Golden Boy’ Britain then?”
Frank replied exactly the same Ken, you see I’m not bothered which lad wins as I know I can make both of them money”.
Frank turned to Shay who had just been sitting quietly and said “You do like money don’t you Shay?”
Shay still in a state of shock just said “Yes”.
Frank then said “Well sign with me and you’ll have more money than you could ever dream of”.
You could see in Shay’s eyes he wanted to say yes straight away, but Kenny butted in and told Shay to go home and talk to his Mom and Dad about it. Frank agreed with Kenny, but said he needed an answer as soon as he could. Shay promised to let him know by tomorrow, Frank gave Shay his card and said “I’ll look forward to your call” Frank left the gym knowing in his mind that he had already got Shay.
After Frank had left Shay asked Kenny what he thought, Kenny told him “It’s a good offer Son, it’s a good offer”.
Shay could tell there was a but coming and asked Kenny what it was. Kenny looked at the floor then lifted his head and looked Shay straight in the eye and said “The bloke can’t be trusted; I know that for sure, just be careful if you do sign with him”.
Shay smiled at Kenny and said “I will be Ken and you will be with me mate, I want you to be my manager”.
Kenny laughed and said “Frank will want his own people looking after you, so this will be as far as we go, sorry Son”.
Shay then told Kenny “Well Ken if he won’t have you then he won’t get me, we have both worked hard to get me this far and you’re the only person I want instructing me in my corner. I need you Ken more than ever”.
Kenny looked at Shay shook his head in disbelief at what Shay was saying and said “You would, wouldn’t you Son, you’d walk away from the deal if I don’t agree”.
Shay’s reply was swift “To right Ken, I need you in my corner mate”. Kenny replied with “O.k. o.k. Son, I’ll do it if you can get Frank to agree, now get yourself home and talk to your Mom and Dad about it”.
Shay left the gym and went straight home and told his Mom and Dad, they were overjoyed for him; he was going to live his dream of being a professional boxer. They were even happier when they knew Kenny was going to be managing him. Shay had almost made his mind up to sign, so he call Emma to tell her to come round, he had some great news to tell her. Emma told Shay she would be round later as she had something to do first.
Shay told her it was really important to which her reply was “Well tell me on the phone then”.
Shay said “No Em this is something I have to tell you to you face” Emma could hear his Mom and Dad in the background sounding really excited so she told Shay she would be round straight away.
The next person he called was Kelly; she was already at her accommodations on the university’s campus and was chuffed to bits for him.
Kelly said “I’ll look out for you on telly in the Olympics”.
Their conversation was cut short by Emma’s arrival, he didn’t tell her who he was on the phone to, Shay just didn’t need the hassle.
When he told Emma what he had been offered, she screamed and hugged him. Shay was definitely back in Emma’s good books and she was all over him that night, but Shay had to make sure he didn’t go too far with her until after the finals in 2 weeks time. Shay called Goldsten the next day and said he would sign as long as Kenny coached him, Frank wasn’t too happy, but agreed as he wanted Shay to sign with him.
From then on Kenny took over all the talking with Frank and told him he wanted a copy of the contract so he could let a solicitor look at it before they signed. Frank agreed and said to Kenny “Don’t you trust me Ken?”
Kenny replied straight away with “No I don’t Frank, so don’t try and fuck us over”.
Frank had the contract sent over to Shay, and Kenny gave them to his solicitor to look at. The solicitor gave the contract the thumbs up. Kenny called Frank to tell him they would sign.
Frank said “That’s great Kenny, I’ll tell you what, we will do the signing on the day of the finals. I’ll see you down there”.
Shay trained hard that week, he had a few articles wrote about him in the local papers saying they thought he was going to win the British title and the Olympic spot. Emma even managed to have her own interview with one of the local papers talking mostly about herself and how proud she was of Shay. Emma was trying to break into the modeling industry, so getting a few pictures in the paper wasn’t going to do Emma any harm.
The week of the fight Shay took it easy on the training, just some light pad work and some short jogs. Kenny had been working on the strategy Shay was going to use for the fight, he told Shay he had got a plan to beat Gary Britain, Shay was all ears on the master plan Kenny had came up with.
Kenny started to tell him his plan “It’s quite simple, if you try and out box Britain, and don’t knock him out you won’t get the decision, we both know he’s the ‘Golden Boy’ and the one they would like to go to the Olympics”.
Shay shrugged his shoulders and said “Yeah I know Ken, so what’s the plan”.
Kenny smiled and said “You go out there from the start of the first round and smash fuck out of him and you don’t stop throwing bombs until you stop him”.
Shay looked a bit shocked and said “But Britain’s a proper slick boxer, if I do that he will just make me look stupid”.
Kenny shook his head and replied “No he won’t Shay he’ll expect you to try and out box him, if you catch him cold at the start, trust me he won’t know what hit him”.
Shay said “Well if you think that will work, I trust you ken”.
There was 2 days to go before the final; Kenny got a call off Frank saying to come down the day before the fight as he had booked them in to a hotel near the York Hall. Kenny told Shay and said he would pick him up at midday before the fight. Kenny picked Shay and Emma up from his house and they set off to London. Kenny wasn’t too pleased to see that Emma was coming down with them, but she wasn’t going to miss a night in a hotel in London. They got to the hotel around 3 o’clock in the afternoon and Mr Goldsten was waiting at the hotel to meet them. They were staying at the 5 star Town Hall Hotel; it was less than 5 minutes away from the York Hall where the fight was being held.
Frank was standing next to the entrance to welcome them, “Well Ken, what do you think?”
Kenny smiled and said “Yeah it looks nice Frank”.
Frank then said to Shay “You all ready for tomorrow Son”.
Then Frank clocked Emma getting out of the car and said “And who is this lovely lady with you?”
Shay replied “This is my girlfriend Emma and yeah I’m more than ready”.
Frank smiled and said “That’s what I like to hear and you’re a very lucky man she a stunner, now let’s get you booked in to your rooms”.
The porter took their bags and showed them to their rooms, the rooms were pure luxury. Emma and Shay were sharing one room and Kenny was in the room next to them. Emma was well impressed when they got into the room.
She hugged Shay and gave him a very loving kiss and said “This is how we will be living from now on, you’ve done it Babe”.
Shay just said “Let’s not count our chickens yet, I still got to win this fight”.
Emma smiled and replied “Well even if you don’t we’ll still have money”.
Shay nodded his head and said “Yeah I suppose we will”.
Frank had invited them all to dinner in the restraint in the hotel at 7 o’clock. Kenny and Shay met in the bar just before 7.
Kenny asked Shay “Where’s Emma?”
Shay replied “She is still getting ready; she said she’ll be down in a while”.