Corpe and Bloor

On the rural islands of Corpe and Bloor the annual Fight Week is about to begin in which champions are chosen and lives changed forever. The Fight is between a champion from Corpe and a champion from Bloor. Girls are chosen as prizes for the man who is crowned the winner of the Fight. Faith Rathbone is the unwilling prize of Corpe and the life she had always known is tipped upside down in the form of Alec McFadden, the champion of Bloor. She must decide if she can begin to hope for a life on Bloor but leave her family behind. But her fate is not her own.

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3. One - Alec

My name is Alec McFadden, and I am the second son to Arthur McFadden, boss of six hundred and eighty two starving miners who risk their lives every day to go down into the Green Pits to look for fragmented treasure. It’s not gold, but my people on Bloor price it as such, and it is the main source of income for the more . . . well-off families who live here. The land is all flat and unsustainable, swelling whenever the rain falls and cracks when the sun shines. Hardly anything grows here, except the population. And for that, there has to be more than one way to feed everyone, to get the homeless into homes and the overcrowded slums to become normal houses, with decent sized rooms and only one family living in it at a time. Even though the thought is bitter, the people on the neighbouring island, Corpe, seemed to have managed it quite well, and I do not know how they have. It seems like an impossible and daunting task to be performed and therefore it will probably never happen. No one care here; we all run around in our own little circle and pretend that everything is okay. And if I were to try, no one would listen to the second back-up son of the Great Arthur McFadden.
          I find myself walking towards the rocky beach just to watch the watery, fiery sky drop the sun and pull up the moon; much like a puppeteer might do to his puppets. I know the beach on this side will be empty at this time – not that it is particularly crowded at any other time of the day. No, townsmen tend to avoid this beach, for it is the beach that faces them. It is the beach that faces Corpe.
          Though we are so close, we are so different and somehow, our cultures and societies can leave one another alone and to their own peace. We have to meet once every year, on the very Fight Land that I can see is barely visible to me now, to bring out the islands’ best fighters, for a brawl to the death. Now, some may think that it is completely useless if there is no gain by it, but believe me, the islanders on both sides have every reason to fight. For one, it is like all the anger and hatred the opposite islands felt for each other is all channelled through the two opponents, and by that, it sort of calms the blood lust of the others, to stop war from erupting. This is what has been drilled into my head from the first day I went to school, and they are constantly reminding us since. The second gain is rather the more sensitive one, in which people’s lives are changed.
          The second gain is that two prizes are chosen from each island, and whichever island wins, gets to take the prize from the opposite island, to start a new life in the hands of their captors. They are normally pretty young girls who have barely left school and who know nothing of the cruelties of men and with a blink of an eye, they are whisked away from the only life they have ever known, expected to fit in and act like the natives. I cannot imagine anything worse for a young girl, all alone without anyone in the world to care for them, plunged among the people they have been brought up to hate. To me, that would almost seem close to a living hell.
          Though this year, the name hasn’t been revealed yet, but tomorrow night, there is a competition between the best fighters on the island, and out of those, there will be a champion by the dawn. 

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