School Fights Part 3: Behind The Bike Sheds
This was probably the biggest fight I ever had with anyone at school.
It was rather different to fighting Chompy The School Bully.
I think this one was a direct result of people knowing that I was fighting in tournaments and stuff, because the only reason he’s given to this day as to why he wanted to fight was: “I dunno, I just wanted a fight.”
Let’s call this one ‘Tompy’. He was one of those ‘almost a friend’ type people – in the same class, we got on pretty well – but were never best friends or anything, nor had the will to be. He was a known ruffian and fighter, and I guess considered one of The Hardest in the school. He certainly was in his High School the year after we fought, anyway!
So I got the message sometime during the school day that “Tompy wants to fight you behind the bike sheds after school!”.
“Umm… why?” I asked, thinking how I didn’t particularly want to have my brains bashed in.
“Err… OK then…” Well, I could hardly find fault with his reasoning, could I?
People spent the rest of the day helpfully informing me how hard he was, and started to avoid the Dead Man Walking again.
After school I went to the bike sheds and he was there already, with an even bigger crowd than when I fought Chompy the year before.
“Are you ready?” He asked me, as I put my bag down on the floor.
“Well… yeah…” I told him, getting ready to get into all the “COME ON THEN!!” stuff again…
What the fuck was that?
It was him, smacking me with a right hook before I’d even finished speaking!
Ok then. We got straight into it – both dancing about, much to the joy of the crowd. I didn’t really want to be fighting still, but that first punch told me I either had to fight, let him kick the shit out of me, or cry like a baby and call it off and never live it down.
I was a hell of a lot better fighting by this stage, and was getting much nastier, having got into some more brutal styles of martial art.
Unfortunately, I was still shitting myself about fighting him, so I was holding back, and more fighting just to stay even and stop him killing me. I don’t know why – guess it was just our good buddies Fear and Adrenaline Dump. Street fighting is a whole new world away from organised competitions, and I was still pretty inexperienced about dealing with my own fear in a ‘real’ fight.
It was an impressive fight – we were using punches and kicks and everything else, and unlike Chompy, Tompy was hitting me hard and I was feeling it.
The fight is still a bit hazy to me, but I remember certain parts of it, either because I’d done something awesome, he’d hurt me, or something surreal was happening.
Now, in competitions, I was a kick specialist, and even to this day I’m an excellent kicker – even though, as back then, I prefer to use hand techniques. He made the mistake of trying to take me on with kicks early on in the fight. I remember after fielding a few of these (and this was probably the first time my sixth sense had kicked in during a fight), he tried a kick, but somehow I not only saw it coming, I actually jumped in the air over his leg and kicked down on top of his kick. He never attempted another kick, and my confidence soared from that point.
A few times, we had to stop fighting because a Teacher was walking past on their way home, and we’d all wander off slowly then leg it back when they’d gone, and it was straight back to the fight.
I managed to grab his hair, intending to pull his head back and drop a hammer fist on his face (my current favourite Nasty Move), but couldn’t quite get his head back so the move failed.
He got me in a head lock, and was smacking me right in my mush with his other hand – fuck knows how he didn’t have my teeth out or break my nose!
Then he tried to throw me on the floor, and I got a hold and took him down but landed hard on my shoulder. We both jumped back up and carried on.
Then, I remember clearly that I was stepping back for a bit of a breather, and threw out two super-fast left jabs. Both connected with his nose, which spread out all over his face and gushed blood. A few punches that I thought were gentle taps and all that damage from them!
He was still fighting, and seeing the damage to him, I’d gained total confidence in myself. This was MY fight. I was in control. The fear had gone.
I asked him if he wanted to stop, to which he quickly said (just like Chompy had) “He wanted to stop – you all heard that!”
Fine by me – but I really was going to go for it after that!
For some fucked up reason, most people said he’d won that fight, and it wasn’t until a few years later when I spoke to those same people that they admitted I absolutely battered him! I guess they were his mates, or wanted to stay on his good side as they went to his High School, and I went to mine.
All I know is that I was the one cleaning his blood off me that night, and I’d found out this time that I really could fight – and I was good! Although that fall totally fucked up my shoulder, so it was probably good that the fight ended there, rather than not long after when I found I couldn’t raise my arm!!!