Seconds Out

Image copyright: J Hardy Carroll

He’s outwardly calm as Jake adjusts the laces on his gloves.

“Not too confident, boy?” says Jake.

“Nah, I know it’s gonna be a fight.”

But he knows he will win, knows he will wear the belt. He has won all the battles in life, overcome all the obstacles: his hapless father, his violent mother, the far too friendly priest. There wasn’t even a fairy-tale rescue by a charismatic and caring teacher at his school.

Nah, nothing, nobody, he can’t cope with. Winning is in his genes, he knows.

He hears the bell. Stands, touches gloves, drops his shoulder. Fights.



Written for Rackerty Wisoff-Fields’ weekly writing challenge found here:

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26 Responses to Seconds Out

  1. athling2001 says:

    Sad he is always fighting, but glad he is still fighting. Well done.

  2. So sad that he has to fight everyone in his life.

  3. liz young says:

    Good story about a true survivor.

  4. Oh what a hard life… and you are right, for him winning is the only option…

  5. Dale says:

    Some just have to fight and claw all their lives. I like to think that with this belt, he can finally rest… but they rarely ever feel it’s enough, eh?
    Well done, Patrick.

  6. I think this is my favorite story this week. So much subtleness balanced by strength.

  7. pennygadd51 says:

    I liked the subtlety of your depiction of the man’s history. You’ve written it artfully enough that even I – who hate boxing – feel sympathy, and a twinge of admiration for your hero.

  8. Dear Patrick,

    The subtle “…far too friendly priest…” slapped me in the face. A lot of story between the lines. I’m betting on his win. Well done.



  9. Sarah Ann says:

    I imagine he will dive and deflect and fool his opponent into being over-confident. Your narrator has been fighting all his life and doesn’t know how to do anything else. A great character portrait.

  10. subroto says:

    Nice one, a gritty story about a survivor. But he shouldn’t get overconfident, there is always someone more ambitious and hungrier.

  11. Iain Kelly says:

    I hope he isn’t over-confident…

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