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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5. Three - Alec

The Trials are about to begin.
          Bets are normally only meant to start when the Fight Weeks does, but here in the dark and sweaty cellars of The Beggars’ Bones, no one really gives a toss. There’s a large chalk board covering most of one wall with the names of the boys competing and the bets placed on them. With the McFadden name on my back, my father ensured that I would not be fighting against any of the scum, but only the boys whom he was acquainted with their fathers. Many of the higher men (as they like to think themselves) think those on Corpe to be barbaric and themselves on Bloor to be the Class of Cultured Civilisation. To be perfectly honest, I think it all bollocks to begin with, for down here, there are many gentlemen shouting and swearing and jeering their bet on. I know one of the two boys in the ring at the moment, and I know who was winning.
          Thomas Lukewaden is one of the biggest guys in my school, for his grandfather had been from Corpe and the people from there were like massive, meaty, ruddy giants compared to the people of Bloor. Lukewaden is fighting against a skinny, underfed boy, who is already covered in blood, grim and sweat. The boy’s ribs are showing so clearly on his chest that you can count them without too much trouble. His left eye is purple and so swollen that he can hardly see out of it. It is an unfair fight and couldn’t have been going on for less than ten minutes. I watch silently with my hood over my head as the boy falls to his knees after a punch to the head and is out cold. The poor buggar didn’t stand a chance.
          I made my way without drawing too many eyes, past the bar where several harlots were sitting in rather scanty dresses, waiting for their customers after a couple of pints had been craned down the betters’ necks. All of these women had so much make up on that I wouldn’t be able to recognise them without it. I passed by them, ignoring their purrs and fake high pitched voices. I can smell their over-flowery perfume as I walk past and it almost makes my eyes water. I cannot imagine my sister becoming like one of these harlots, sitting there stringy, small pieces of clothing covering their bodies, padded out so that their hunger lines are unnoticeable for their drunk clients. It is disgusting to see so many young lives wasted this way and yet the people I call my own turn their back on it all. They will not accept that some things have to change, and change they must, for if we continue to live in the society that we do today, the situation will just keep getting worse and worse.
          By the time I make it into the little alcove that’s normally used as a toilet and always constantly smells of vomit, the boy who Lukewaden had been fighting is getting stretchered away by two over jolly medics who’d had one too  many to even see straight, never mind bringing this boy back to consciousness. Lukewaden has begun to work the drunken crowd until they are all practically baying for blood and screaming a name at the tip of their lungs.
          Mine.

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