copyright circa April 2009


'Ursa. That is, U...R...S...A, like for Ursula'.

I knew how it was spelt, but I'd just wanted to hear her tongue roll sexily over the Eastern European vowels again.

'Is mean, 'Little She-Bear', she smiled, raising her arms and giving off a mock roar, before giggling to a stop.

I laughed too, glancing back at her resume on the table between us. I could hardly believe it, but she was just what I was looking for. The latest Eastern European sensation - 23 years old, 5'7, about 135 pounds, stunningly pretty with perfect, tanned skin and sleek, dark brown hair . Ursa was wearing a baggy red sweater, white sneakers and a black Nike baseball cap to protect her eyes from the blazing sun outside the club. The sweater hung low, almost covering the black hotpants she was wearing, creating the impression on several of the club's patrons that she might be naked from the waist down. It takes a confident girl to walk down Tottenham Court Road on a weekday dressed like that. Occasionally I heard a shuffling and crisp swish of skin on skin as she re-crossed her long, toned, tanned legs beneath the table - for all her stunning looks and physique, Ursa was clearly nervous.

She really had no reason to be. According to her resume (which I'd verified with the companies on the before meeting her), she had an impressive record in her native Hungary. Thirteen matches (lucky for some), comprising twelve wins and only one draw. That had been against legendary Belgian bodybuilder Noni, who had had several years experience, two inches and over fifteen pounds on her - they'd fought each other to a standstill, one submission apiece and the Belgian had admitted it was probably the toughest match she'd ever had. Of Ursa's other matches I had no doubt that some of them would have been against the usual wannabes and makeweights, but an unbeaten record is still an unbeaten record - plenty of others were clearly established circuit veterans who would have been no pushover.

Another soft swish as she crossed her legs again. One of her sneakers brushed my leg - I couldn't tell if it was intentional or not. I looked up and she was gazing at me apprehensively.

'You think is good, yes?' she said.

'I think it's very, very good, Ursa', I smiled. 'This is one of the most impressive records I've ever seen.'

She blushed, putting a hand to her mouth in shock. She genuinely seemed amazed at how good she was. 'Wow! Really? I am, like, super star?'

'Not yet, Ursa, but I really think you could be', I said, withdrawing the contract and pen from my inside pocket and pushing them across the table towards her.

Her big green eyes widened, she stood up and almost staggered out of our booth with surprise. 'Gosh!' she gasped, 'you don't even need see me wrestle?'.

I smiled and shook my head. With the right management and marketing she could be huge, even in London, where the industry was so much more competitive then Hungary. She had it all - looks, technique, strength, sweet nature - and though I was obviously going out on a limb, I had a good feeling about this girl and my instincts hadn't let me down yet.

After a minute or two she calmed down, took the pen in a still-trembling hand and signed on the dotted line. I gestured towards the bar and the celebratory cocktails I'd ordered for us were brought over. To my surprise she waved hers away.

'You don't feel like celebrating?' I said.

'Oh yes, yes of course', she laughed, 'but I have arranged match for you tonight. If I drink before wrestle I get get cramps.'

In the centre of the club was a dance floor, but it wasn't often used for dancing. Instead the staff would fix down a couple of large gym mats on nights when wrestling matches had been arranged. This was what Ursa had done. Having only recently moved from Hungary, she hardly knew anyone in the UK, so she had posted an open challenge on the club's website, all so that I could see her wrestle for myself.

'And someone's responded?' I said.

She nodded.

'And you don't know who it's going to be?' I inquired, already protective of my new charge and not wanting her to get in over her head.

'Is fine, honey', Ursa smiled, 'she is beginner. Nice girl, over there.'

She pointed across the club to a booth opposite us. In it, sipping a Coke and reading a TV listings magazine, was a dark-skinned black girl in a grey tracksuit and flip-flops. She glanced up and gave us a nervous wave when she saw us looking at her.

'She is called Ammi, from Peckham', Ursa whispered to me. 'She want to get into this business too, but she only wrestle her brother and is bit... you know... bootylicious, yeah?'.

For Ammi's sake I stifled a snigger. Ursa smiled and shrugged, 'Luck of the draw, huh?'.

The lights in the club dimmed to a large spot over the mats in the centre. The piped music stopped, and a voice announced through the speakers that this afternoon's match was about to start. Ursa pushed her bag across the table to me.

'Okay for you to look after, yes?' she said. I nodded and Ursa stepped out of the booth, peeling off the red sweater. Underneath she was wearing an orange woven-look string bikini top, which she must have picked especially, since it complemented her skin tone and hair perfectly. A murmur passed through the watching patrons as the Hungarian's gorgeous body was revealed for the first time in the UK - I felt we were watching history in the making. She kicked off her sneakers and took a step towards the mat, then, after an endearingly comic pause, tucked her thumbs into the waistband of her hotpants and slipped them off. If I hadn't seen it myself I wouldn't have believed there was space for anything under them, but somehow she also had on a tiny orange string thong which matched her bikini top. The rest of the club seemed, like me, to feel this was a real 'where-were-you-when' moment. Lastly she took off her cap, placing it upside down on the table and shaking her shimmering dark hair loose to her shoulder blades, before she stepped towards the mat and into the spotlight.

Ammi had already arrived there, almost unnoticed by the crowd. In the light, only feet from Ursa, I was able to get a proper look at her. By my guess she was seventeen, with thick black hair stretching down to the middle of her back. She was giving away at least three or four inches to Ursa, and wasn't in as good condition. Her bum and thighs were thick, not yet flabby, but seemingly developing into a classic Afro-Caribbean bottom-heavy shape already. I guessed correctly, however, that this meant both girls would be about the same weight. She was very daringly dressed in a black and pink flowery bra and matching neon pink string thong, with, oddle. Her attempt to steal the show was commendable, but I could read in her face that she was wondering what she'd gotten herself into.

As they were announced they did a few stretches on the mat, as much to scope each other out as to physically ready themselves. Ammi seemed more and more ill-at-ease, like an unwilling participant in the school sports day as Ursa's body glistened and rippled with muscle under the light. Across the club I saw one man, seemingly enraptured by the powerful Hungarian, remove a £50 note from his wallet, glance at his companion and seemingly offer a wager, which, to my surprise, was accepted.

A small silver trophy was placed on the bar top next to the ring, alongside a roll of notes. Ursa glanced back at me and gestured to the cup.

'My first prize in UK, yes?' she grinned. I felt self-conscious for Ammi, but couldn't really not smile back.

The club manager stepped forward to introduce best-of-three match between the two girls. Ammi received polite applause and tried to look calm and composed. A much louder ovation greeted Ursa, who blew the darkened throng a kiss.

The manager stepped off the mats to indicate that start of the match. Ursa and Ammi circled each other, the strong light shining off their skin, the deep brown and light bronze giving an interesting contrast. Both sets of eyes flickered as they scanned the bodies of their opponents, looking for opportunities for victory and reasons to be cautious.

Ammi's nerves eventually got the better of her and she lunged suddenly, downwards and to her right, aiming to hook Ursa's leg. The Hungarian was far too quick for her, however, twisting out of harm's way and throwing an arm down around Ammi's neck, pulling her into a side headlock. The black girl grunted, already outmaneuvered, and grabbed at the toned arms constricting her airway. With her arms locked firmly in place, Ursa took the opportunity to parade Ammi around the mat, her large black bottom now looking even larger as the bigger wrestler bent her over.

After a quick circuit of the ring Ursa suddenly twisted, hip-tossing Ammi to the mat with the headlock still tightly applied. Now lying across her chest, the brunette gave another hard squeeze on the black girl's neck. I could see Ammi's biceps bulging as she tried to pull herself free, but failed to make any impression on the Hungarian's hold. Ursa rotated her body so she was lying flush across the teenager, her legs straddling Ammi's waist to avoid her legs. Her arms suddenly flashed as she released the headlock and grabbed for Ammi's arms. Groggy from the hold, Ammi was slow to react and found her hands pinned firmly to the mat above her head.

Ursa tilted her head upwards - she was looking right at me. She grinned like a schoolgirl, clearly hoping I was enjoying watching her dominate her opponent. After a couple of seconds she looked back down, only a few inches from Ammi's face, which was grimacing at the frustration and pain of having the other girl on top so early on.

Ursa did a flourish with her long legs and they swished down, brushing the mat with a hiss and hooking themselves around Ammi's neon pink anklewarmers for a textbook grapevine. Ammi squealed in pain - whatever the chunky black girl was built for it clearly wasn't flexibility. Her legs were already trembling in the python-like grip of Ursa's, her hips were writhing with pain and her pink thong was being dug into her groin - she looked like a rag doll that Ursa might at any moment rip in half.

'FFUUUUUUUUCK!', Ammi groaned, her voice reverberating around the club as Ursa's legs started to do a serious number on her. I saw her mouth gape red white and black as her body arched and spasmed with agony. Ursa raised her head a little, flicking back a strand of hair with a twitch of her neck - the shadows made it hard to be certain, but I thought she winked at me. I saw her taut, glistening buttocks flex, eliciting a fresh squeal of anguish from the black girl beneath her.

'AAAAAAAOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWW' - a full-blooded scream from the teenager as Ursa split her past ninety degrees - 'STOP STOP, LEMME GO, LEMME GO!'.

'Give, yeah?' Ursa nodded, smiling right into Ammi's face.

'YEAH I GIVE YEAH, FUCK OFF ME!' squealed the black girl, grimacing with pain and anger.

Ursa unhooked the vine, sitting up astride Ammi and then rolling off to the side. The room filled with applause and wolf whistles as the manager awarded the first fall to the pretty Hungarian. Ammi slowly sat up, a hand on the inside of each thick black thigh, probing for damage. I really felt for her, but turned to Ursa, smiling, congratulating her on her first submission in the UK. She was beaming, delighted at how pleased I was - it was all I could do to keep her from bubbling over.

'Take it easy, superstar', I said as she squeezed my hand. Glancing over her shoulder to Ammi, who didn't appear to have brought anyone with her, I said' You okay?'.

Ammi looked up, trying not to make eye contact with Ursa. 'Yeah, I'm fine thank you', she mumbled, struggling to her feet.

'You gonna be okay to go on?', I said.

'I'll be fine, yeah, thanks', Ammi replied, shifting her feet uncomfortably and adjusting her thong. She turned back to the mat, one of her ankle warmers drooping down her leg.

Ursa shot me a petulant look. 'Hey, you my manager or hers?' she said loudly, before grinning broadly at me and planting a kiss on my cheek.

Both girls returned to the mat as the manager announced the second round. There was a definite spring in Ursa's step as she circled Ammi, psyching out the teenager, trying to unsettle her into an error.

The Hungarian's strategy seemed to pay off almost immediately. She made a feint to her right which suckered Ammi enough for Ursa to hook and hand behind the black girl's right knee. Jerking hard, Ursa sent the teenager tumbling backwards to her arse on the mat. Ammi was quicker to see the danger this time, though, and lashed out sharply with her right leg, not connecting, but doing enough to keep Ursa at bay. In the process her ankle warmer flew off, trailing a neon pink arc over Ursa's shoulder to the mat behind her.

Both girls circled again, hands raised, the tension crackling between them until they simultaneously darted at each other, locking up at the shoulders, each prepared to match their brute strength against their opponent. Ammi's back arched almost immediately - pushing upwards against the taller woman, she was in the weaker position. The light brown soles of her feet showed against the mat as she thrust desperately into the Hungarian, who, with a wide stance and her arms fully raised, seemed in total control. They rotated a little, Ammi seemingly tottering, wilting in the face of Ursa's strength, her contorted mouth contrasting starkly with the calm, impassive confidence of the brunette.

Ursa made to shift her right leg by a couple of inches when suddenly it flew out from under her, her foot slipping on something neon pink. She fell to one knee right in front of Ammi, the lock-up vanishing as she flung out her arms to the sides to steady herself. For a fraction of second Ammi gawped, unable to process what was happening as Ursa seemed to simply prostrate herself before her and I thought Ursa's bizarre slip would go unpunished, but just as quickly the black girl grabbed the back of Ursa's neck and thrust it between her rippling black thighs. Reaching down, taking hold of Ursa's body, Ammi rolled sideways to the mat.

The turnaround was unbelievable. From a position of dominance, Ursa was now trapped in a headscissor by the teenager, her waist encircled from behind by Ammi's black arms, linked in a bearhug. Ammi's head was resting on one of Ursa's thigh, safe from the flailing legs and looking like she still couldn't believe what was happening. Ursa was being bent backwards like a bow, her long, toned arms reaching around Ammi's legs and straining at them, the muscles in her torso rippling in the light as she was stretched in what must have a murderously uncomfortable position. The room was totally silent, the only noise a few muffled grunts as the Hungarian battled to free herself.

I'd just recovered my senses when Ursa tapped out, fingers pattering against the tensed muscle of Ammi's thick thigh. Although some people were clearly shocked at how quickly she'd submitted, I wasn't too surprised - however flexible she was, the shock and sudden pain of the hold would have been a lot to deal with and she still had another fall to go. Ursa showed the maturity that came with her experience - a more raw wrestler would have wasted precious energy and risked injury trying to free themselves from an impressively well-executed hold.

Ursa rolled to her front on the mat, both hands immediately clasping her neck, breathing heavily. Ammi kneeled up above her, eyes still wide, seemingly shocked by what she'd done.

'Holy shit, are you alright?', she asked, moving a little closer to the prone Hungarian. Ursa flicked a hand at her, motioning her away, and then started to kneel up.

'Don't worry, is fine', said the brunette, her face flushed and hair ruffled, 'is just my neck, you know, I slip over, you so quick and you twist a little'.

The manager stepped onto the mat, picking up the ankle warmer on which Ursa had slipped. Recognising me as her manager he called me over to where the girls were sitting.

'Not sure what you want to do here', he said. 'We can replay that round if you'd prefer, as it's pretty harsh on your girl'.

Ursa started shaking her head and cut in before I could reply. 'No no', she said, 'is okay, I should maybe watch where I step - you think is okay?'.

The last question was directed at me. Again I was pleased by her professionalism, she clearly wanted to make a good impression on the audience too. A replay would have been a little unfair on Ammi, who clearly looked relieved.

'That's fine by me', I said. The manager nodded and took Ammi aside. I turned back to Ursa, who was still massaging her neck. 'Sure you're okay?' I said.

'Yes, better now', she smiled, 'now I finish her - show how real scissor is done.'

Both girls returned to the mat. Ammi had taken off her ankle-warmers altogether and, if anything, looked even more nervous, presumably at the though of what Ursa would do to get back at her.

Once more they circled, gradually drawing closer and closer, each wary of the other with the match so delicately poised. I could see their lips moving and could hear indistinct snatches of words - I'd have killed to be able to hear what they were saying and so would everyone else in the room, you could cut the tension with a knife.

The first move was made with a flash of tanned skin as Ursa brought her arms up around Ammi's neck, audaciously swinging herself forwards into the black girl with her legs spread. Ammi was slow this time, probably not expecting such a full frontal assault. She grabbed Ursa's arms, pulling at them even as the Hungarian's legs wrapped around her waist. The weight caused her to lose her balance and she toppled to the mat with Ursa wrapped around her like a python.

The impact of landing caused Ursa's arms to slip from Ammi's head, but she still had the scissor tightly applied on the teenager's sides. Righting herself to a sitting position, she planted her hands on the mat behind her and squeezed. The luscious bronzed legs stretched; the taut, perfect buttocks lifted slowly off the mat; her torso arched athletically towards the ceiling; sheets of defined muscle stood out down her legs as she applied pressure to the black girl kneeling before her. The sexiest thing of all was the way Ursa was gazing evenly into Ammi's face - I'd seen this look so many times before I knew exactly what it said: "Got you now, haven't I? I'm going to make you pay for even stepping in the ring with me. By the time I'm done you'll have no doubt who's the better woman, but until then I'm going to make you wish you'd never laid a finger on me - and you can beg all you like but there's no way you can stop me."

As Ursa's thighs clenched around her waist, the response was written just as clearly on Ammi's horror-stricken face: "Oh God, no, please, not that, stop, stop, she's so strong, I can't break this, it's just too much, help me, please God get me out of this, I don't have the strength, it's going to kill me".

'UUUUWWW FUUUCK!", was all Ammi said out loud, her brown palms clasping the Hungarian's tanned legs and pushing for all she was worth. The muscles in her arms, shoulders and neck bulged as she strained upwards, as if trying to free herself from a particularly strong and lethal quicksand. This tableau felt like it went on for hours, the silence broken only but Ammi's guttural grunts, gasped curses and increasingly laboured breathing. She wriggled like an animal caught in a trap, her face a mask of despair as she started to wilt and fall sideways. Ursa was the consummate professional, making sure she kept on squeezing until her opponent had literally nothing left, tilting herself further off the mat as Ammi went to her side, deflating like a rubber doll with a puncture.

Even to a seasoned audience member like me, the vision was hypnotic. This was why not even I noticed Ammi's leg swish out from under her and around Ursa's body, giving the black girl enough momentum to roll both her and the Hungarian over to their fronts. Ursa didn't make a sound - perhaps she'd anticipated this, or maybe she simply didn't want to acknowledge her surprise - either way the scissor was now harder for her to hold. She was facing away from Ammi, who was now kneeling up, reaching behind her to where Ursa's legs curved up like a scorpion's tail, the ankles only a few inches behind her head.

Ursa's hands were clasped, her head bent downwards as if in prayer, calling on more strength to keep the scissor tight around Ammi's waist, even in this position, but it didn't seem that anyone was listening. Ammi's arms fumbled, but finally found the tensed, tanned calves behind her. The stubby dark fingers slid blindly up the taut muscle towards Ursa's ankles, gripping and pulling with the desperate strength of someone knowing this is their only chance.

Again the tableau, seemingly carved in stone, even though the two bodies were perceptively shaking with effort. Ammi's bottom with resting on Ursa's and I was entranced by the contrast - smooth tanned skin rubbing against dimpled black skin; expensive, deep orange, knitted thong touching cheap-looking, slightly frilled, pink bottoms; tensed, sun-kissed cheeks mashing into wide, fleshy, chocolate-coloured buttocks.

A gasp of 'Aaaaaah' echoed around the club. It could have been Ammi, as she finally levered Ursa's ankles apart to relieve the pressure on her waist. It could have been Ursa herself as she felt her potentially match-winning scissor pried apart. To me it seemed so loud it must have been both at the same time.

Suddenly Ammi's bulging, coffee-coloured arms whipped, snaking around Ursa's lower legs and pulling them tight into her sides. Then Ammi twisted once more, rolling over again onto her back on the mat. Her grip on Ursa's legs pulled the Hungarian over with her, also to her back, her midsection positioned right on top of the black girl's hips. Somehow Ursa didn't realise her danger until it was too late - Ammi's legs slid out neatly either side of the Hungarian's body and coiled up around the tanned waist, feet linking high in the air, thick thighs growing even thicker as they tightened into two solid slabs of muscle and squeezed either side of Ursa's toned abs.

I was stunned. This was a hard maneuver for anyone to pull off, let alone a teenager who had apparently only ever wrestled her brother. Ursa must have been just as amazed as I and the rest of the audience were, but she didn't show it. She reached out with her arms, hands grasping the surprisingly developed muscles down the back of Ammi's thighs and starting to push, as if it was the most natural thing in the world that she should have the tables turned on her like this. Her head was facing away from me, towards the thighs clasped around her like the fingers of a huge black fist, so I couldn't read the expression on her face.

I could read Ammi though. Many times I'd seen a girl pull off a stunning reverse to completely change the complexion of a match and as soon as they'd achieved it the first thing they did was try to catch the eye of their opponent. Ammi was craning her neck, looking around her legs into the eyes of the woman she was scissoring, a faint smile playing around the corners of her mouth. She was saying: "Enjoyed squeezing me, did you, bitch? Thought I was a weak little girl who'd just scream and give you whatever you wanted? Well, I got out of your legs just fine and I think my legs are too strong for you. You're trapped, tough girl, you're never getting free until I say so. How does it feel, big strong muscle lady, getting squeezed out by a little black girl?"

Ursa's body was gently writhing in time with the bulging of her arms as they pushed on Ammi's legs. A sheen of sweat was forming on her skin, almost as if the teenager was squeezing it out of her. Ammi's legs stretched a few millimeters towards the ceiling and Ursa's head slowly tilted backwards. I could now see her face. To the casual observer she still seemed to be giving nothing away, seemingly committed to forcing open the teenager's legs and stepping out like it was the easiest thing in the world.

The big green eyes met mine, her mouth opening slightly, struggling to keep back a howl of anguish and anger. Somehow she knew she was looking into my eyes even though the glare from the spotlight would have made it all but impossible. Without speaking she was sending a message to me: "I'm scared, oh God, I'm so scared. Somehow she's turned us over and got me in her fat legs and I can't get out. I'm trying - I'm trying really hard but they're not moving. She's seventeen for fuck's sake, how is she so strong? I don't understand! Oooooooh, this hurts so much! Help me - Jesus, please help me, what do I do?".

I gazed back at her: "You have to give, Ursa - she's got you good and you can't get out of there. I know she's only a teenager but her legs are too strong for your arms to open - please submit, love, she's going to break your ribs if you stay there - no one will think less of you."

Ursa's head twitched side to side. Bravely and stupidly she was determined to get free of Ammi's humiliating bodyscissor. She breathed in deeply, stomach contracting, breasts straining at the fabric of her bikini, then pushed hard on the thick black thighs engulfing her waist.

Ammi held on easily - Ursa hadn't budged the black girl even an inch. I could Ursa starting to panic - her movements became spasmodic and frantic, she even clawed a little at the tensed flesh of Ammi's backside. The Hungarian wriggled in Ammi's grip like a gazelle caught helplessly by a predator and waiting only for the kill, her hourglass waist seemingly shrinking even further under pressure from the teenager's scissor. I saw the man who'd made the bet, his face like thunder as he reached into his wallet and passed a note to his smirking friend, before they both got up and left. The manager came over to the booth where I was sitting.

'Your girl's in a lot of trouble - she's been stuck for over three minutes now, the black girl's really doing a number on her'.

'I know', I said, swallowing.

'If she's still there after five minutes we call a constructive submission and she'll forfeit the round - we discussed this before they started. It's for her own protection, so she doesn't hurt herself trying to get out. She's got another...' he checked his stop-watch, 'seventy seconds, but as her manager you can call it before then if you think it'd be best'

He moved away and I forced myself to look back at the mat. Ursa was still gazing at me, knowing what I'd been told, pleading with me not to call her submission. I could see her lips trembling, her eyes sparkling as tears started to form. In the background Ammi's legs bulged around Ursa's waist, immoveable, thick and about to score an unlikely victory over the more muscular girl - Ammi's eyes flashed, still glaring at the woman who, only minutes ago, had been dominating her.

My mouth opened, my throat dry and coarse, it felt like my voice was coming from somewhere else: 'Okay, she gives, let her go, please Ammi'.

At my words Ursa's face contorted with pain for the first time and her mouth opened wide with a wail of 'nnnnnoooo...'. Ammi slowly lowered and opened her legs. Ursa spilled out sidways onto the mat like a heap of cloth, rolling to her front and curling into a foetal position, her arms across her belly. The remaining audience members applauded, some rising to their feet to acclaim Ammi's stunning win.

I got up and made my way towards Ursa, who was still supine on the mat. On my way someone grabbed my sleeve and I turned - it was Ammi, grinning from ear to ear just like Ursa had when I'd signed her up. You could almost feel the adrenaline pouring off her as she jiggled excitedly, her boobs almost bouncing out of her pink and black bikini top.

'Oh my God, you're her agent, aren't you? Holy shit, I'm so excited, I know, like, two moves and I won with both of them. I don't want to, like, piss on her or anything, even though I kinda did', she laughed and straightened her thong, 'but I was wondering are you looking for anyone for your wrestling books at the moment, coz I love it, it's my dream, and also I'm like, a real girl and I think I could really connect with the community at the moment, not like, you know, all these like, supermodel types, I think I could really inspire people so it's like, a really good opportunity for you.'

'Why don't you give me your number', I cut in, handing her a pen from my inside pocket, not meaning to be rude, but wanting to get her out of the way as painlessly as possible. Ammi snatched it and scuttled over to the bar to scribble her number on napkin. As she moved aside I saw Ursa staring at me with a look of betrayal that cut like a knife.

'Ursa, look, I was just-', I began, but suddenly Ammi was back, thrusting the napkin and pen into my pocket.

'That's so cool, call me, yeah?', she beamed, then glanced behind her at Ursa. 'Bad luck, honey,' the black teenager purred, 'need some practice on that scissor, yeah, now I've shown you how it's done'.

Ammi blew Ursa a kiss, placed a real one on my cheek and skipped off to the foyer, where the manager was waiting to photograph her with the trophy and the money.

I turned back to Ursa, but she had already grabbed her bag and was stuffing her clothes into it.

'Ursa, please, let me explain...'

'No!', she snapped, 'I understand, this how you treat your girls! Why do not you and her go and practice her scissor, yeah!'

She turned and stormed out of a nearby fire exit. I followed, angry with myself for letting this happen.

In the alley outside I glanced around - Ursa was bending over, leaning on the wall with on hand. She retched and vomited into the gutter, then collapsed, her hands wrapped around her waist.


At the hospital they told me that Ursa had cracked both her floating ribs. I didn't say exactly what she'd been doing - too many awkward questions.

When I saw her I explained what had happened between Ammi and I. She seemed to believe me, wincing a little as she nodded her acceptance, a large bandage around her taut, tortured midsection which still didn't quite cover the bruising.

'But one thing, right, I not understand', she said. 'You're my manager, yet you submitted me to that girl - why?'

'Ursa, look at you - look what she did to you. If she'd squeezed much harder she could have punctured your lung. Why didn't you just concede the match?'

'I don't concede - I'm Hungarian', snorted Ursa indignantly.

I smiled with relief - a little she-beat with an attitude like that could bounce back from anything.