Supergirl (Kara of Rokyn):

 Tag-Team Terror

 by DarkMark


 Women's wrestling was a big thing on Rokyn, the planet on which Krypton's survivors had settled.  It circled a red sun, whose rays combined with Rokyn's heavy gravity to cancel out the powers Kryptonians wielded on other worlds.  And Supergirl, Kara Zor-El, was the queen of Rokyn's women wrestlers.

 She held the championship belt, which she had wrested away some months earlier from the Black Flame in a terrible, brutal ring fight.  But that didn't mean she always won.  It meant that she hadn't lost a title match--yet.

 When her cousin Kal-El, the Superman of Earth, finally learned what his beautiful relative had been doing for about a year, he hit the ceiling of his Fortress of Solitude--literally.  A chance sportscast from Rokyn, which he monitored on a Fortress viewscreen, had shown a clip from one of Kara's bikini-bouts.  Superman dropped his jaw, leaped up, forgot to negate his inertia, and crunched a hole in the rocky roof of the chamber.  Grousing, he pulled his head out of the hole, repaired the roof, then went to a communicator, connected with Rokyn, and called Kara on the carpet.

 Kara warped in from Rokyn via the WarPort in the Fortress.  She stepped into Earth's environiment and was invigorated by the return of her almost-forgotten superpowers.  It was nice to realize once again that one could move mountains, but it wasn't enough to make her forsake Rokyn for Earth.

 “What is this?”, roared Kal, replaying a bit of the news clip.

 The blonde girl, attired in a green halter and red pants, smiled at her cousin.  “It looks like one of my wrestling matches, Kal.  I meant to tell you about my new career...but time just kinda got away from me.”

 Superman was livid, barely remembering to control his heat vision so as not to burn holes in the wall.  “You...exhibit a freak?  Like a striptease artist in some...”

 “Kal, that will be enough.”  Kara stood firmly before him, her hands on her hips, not budging an inch.  “This is my profession now.  I am a woman wrestler.  I'm very good at it.  Since when do you tell me what I can wear, and what I can do?  Well?”

 Controlling himself, Kal spoke deliberately.  “Kara, I did not train you...even raise become a wrestler.  I did not teach you to show off your body in that manner.  Our status here must be maintained with dignity.  And you have not done--”

 “Our status!” yelled Supergirl.  “What is this 'Our status' thing you're talking about?  We're not some kind of two-man horse, Kal, and don't you forget it.  You're only concerned about your status.  You've always wanted me to work in your shadow.  I've got news for you, cousin.  The sun has shifted position.  I've stepped out into the light.  I'm my own woman now.”

 “You're nothing but a...”

 “Don't you say it!  I'm warning you, Kal.”  Supergirl gave him a baleful stare, one that made even Superman stop in his tracks.

 Superman sighed in frustration, holding out his hands, palms up.  “Kara, we have a responsibility to this Earth.  It needs us.  You're Supergirl.”

 Kara leaned against the wall, perching on one leg and holding her other knee with both hands.  “I'm Kara Zor-El, and then I'm Supergirl.  The world has you, Kal.  It has Superman.  It has the whole Justice League of America, and a jillion other heroes besides.  Don't you see, Kal?  Don't you see?”

 Superman didn't say anything.

 Kara walked about the room, gesturing with her hands as she spoke.  “You wanted me to be your good little heroine, to do what you did with your life.  My dad put me out there in that copy of your suit, with a skirt.  I got the same name as you, except for the last four letters.  You wanted me to fight bad guys, and I did, because you told me to.  You wanted me to have a secret identity, and go through all kinds of hell to protect it, and I did, because you told me to.  You
made me wait a whole frabbing year--”

 “Kara!  Don't use that language--”

 “--A whole frabbing year before letting the world know I existed.  You said it was so that I could learn how to protect my secret identity.  You know what, Kal?”  She stood a foot away from him, her eyes smoldering.  “I think it was just because you didn't want little cousin Kara to steal your precious thunder.”

 Superman slashed his hand out in a gesture of wrath.  “It wasn't like that, and you know it.  Who took you in when that rocket crashed on Earth?  Who was it that bought you your first dress, got you a place to live, taught you what it was like to live on this planet?  Who was it who held you in his arms and rocked you to sleep when you cried over your parents and your friends in Argo City when you thought they were all dead?  Who was it, Kara?  And do you think I did all
of that, and more besides, to protect my precious thunder?  Holy sun of Krypton, don't you think you're editing some memories, too?”

 Kara opened her mouth, then closed it.  She turned away, hugging herself.  Superman stood with an awkward expression on his face.  He didn't have to use his super-hearing to hear her sniffling.

 “Oh, Kara--”  He stepped to touch her shoulders.

 “Go away!”

 “I can't, darling.  You're my cousin.  I love you.”  He held her by the upper arms from behind and nestled his chin against her shoulder.  She was crying, and didn't even attempt to hide it.

 Kal guided them gently to a long seat that resembled a couch and served as one.  He put his arm around her and handed her a box of tissues from an adjacent table.  “Here.  Blow.  But not too hard.”  She did, and then set about getting herself under control.  Superman gently rubbed her back about the shoulder blades.

 “Well, guess things haven't changed so much since the old days, eh, Kara?”  He smiled gently at her.  “Me and you here on the couch, trying to figure out the big wide universe again.”

 Kara wiped her eyes and smiled.  “I remember you used to tell me not to cry too hard.  You were afraid I'd lose control and they'd hear me clear into the next county.”  She laughed softly.  “Some secret identity I'd have then, huh?”

 “Yeah, Karaish.  You're lucky that Dick Malverne guy wasn't as persistent as Lois Lane.  You'd never have gotten out of the orphanage without everybody learning Linda Lee was Supergirl.”  He tilted her head up by the chin.  Kara's eyes were still moist, but she was smiling.

 “Oh, you.  You never give me credit for ingenuity and invention.  Besides, if he really had learned I was Supergirl, I had a secret defense weapon for him.”

 “What kind of secret defense weapon was that?”

 “I'd've stripped naked and he would've lost his mind!”  She laughed so hard she doubled up, jackknifed as she sat on the couch.  Kal was roaring too, and their combined laughter shook the sturdy Fortress room.  It took over a minute for them to bring it down to a series of giggles and grunts that left them with hot stitches.

 “Oh, you know, you know what I wanted to do to Lois one time?” gasped Superman.  “Just once, I wanted to lure her into the Planet storeroom, make believe I didn't see her, turn my back, take off my coat--and have a Flash uniform underneath!”  It set her off again, and she had to lie on the couch and kick her legs (it was barely able to take the punishment).  They had to howl it out for 90 seconds before they could get under control again.  Sonar detectors over that part of the globe registered the sound of laughter to puzzled defense monitor teams.  Well, at least it wasn't an ICBM...

 When they finally got it under control again, they sat side by side, the warmth between them kindled enough to melt the icecap outside.  Kara took Kal's hand in her own and massaged his palm and fingers, smiling at him.  Kal smiled back, and then looked away from her.  “You know, Kara, there's another reason why I made you wait a year before your coming-out party.”
 Silence for two seconds.  “Oh?”

 Superman sighed.  “I've never told you this before, Karaish.  I haven't dared.  I was...I was afraid for you.”

 “Afraid for me?”  She blinked at him in disbelief.

 “Yes.  Afraid for you.  I'd been operating in public, man and boy, for over ten years when you popped out of that rocket in that blue-and-red outfit.  I'd made so many enemies I couldn't even count 'em on a computer.  And every one of 'em was trying to find a sure-fire way to kill me.  A lot of 'em got really close.”  He shook his head.  “When I saw you, I was so glad that I wasn't the only Kryptonian on Earth that I just, well, wanted to swoop you up, take you into the Fortress, and have you stay there forever so that nobody but me would know you even existed.  Just so I could know that you were safe.

 “That crazy Lex Luthor, if he really had hurt you, I don't know if I could keep that oath about not harming anybody.  All those stupid crooks with their rotten little Kryptonite chunks burning holes in their hands, I could see them crowding up to you like moths to a lightpost.  And those Phantom Zone misfits--you hear me out there, misfits?--might try to tear you apart when they got out of there the next time.  I didn't want anybody to hurt you, Kara.  Not anybody.”

 Kara was silent, letting her cousin remove the firewall from his heart.

 “But I, I just couldn't do it.  You had to learn how to live.  You had to grow up.  I couldn't keep you in a bell jar forever.  I had to let you get out there and take some lumps, and learn how to deal with things.  I--Kara.  Do you know I always wanted a sister?  I've always been lonely.  A brother would have been nice.  But do you think...”  He was choking back his own tears.  “Do you think that...I would've stayed single this long...if I'd grown up with a sister?  Somebody who...could teach me about women...?  Do you...”

 And now she was holding him against her breast for the first time, and rocking him.  “It's okay, Kal.  It's okay.  I do understand.  I do...”


 On Rokyn, Nar-Es, Kara's pot-bellied, affable manager, was talking to his charge in his office a few days later.

 “We want to try you in a different venue, Kara.  The one-on-one stuff is very good, but we want a little variation on that.  How's about a tag-team?”

 Kara, in a green tunic and pants, glanced across at Hira, her trainer, a brunette woman about 45 years of age, wearing purple sweats.  “Did you suggest this, Hira?  Or was it his idea?”

 Hira leaned against the wall and smiled.  “We'll share the honors on this one.  We think it'd be a good idea to get you in a mixed tag-team.  You know, you and a guy against another girl and a guy...”

 “I know what a mixed tag-team is, for R's sake,” snapped Kara, running her hands through her hair.  “But who do you have in mind?  I'm not into tagging with just some dummy you want to make into a star.”

 Nar slapped his hands down on his desk.  “Oooh, Miss Temperamental!  Let me remind you, kid, that you were as raw as unpicked h'list before we ran you through our program here, and you came out being able to beat Zora Vi-Lar.  Is there not a little debt here, my dear?”

 Hira sat in a seat facing Kara.  “He's right, honey.  We need a little variety on your usual match.  The public will get bored of even you if we don't throw some surprises into the mix before long.  So let us do a mixed tag with you, and see how it goes.”

 “Besides,” said Nar, “I don't want just 'some dummy' to do tags with you.”  He waited for Kara's reply.

 Warily, she said, “So...who did you have in mind?”

 “I have to tell you?  Who, Kara, is the most famous Kryptonian to survive the big blast?”  He was grinning like a possum.

 Kara jumped up from her chair.  “Oh, no!  Not Kal!  He'd tell us to go to Sheol in a handbasket!  He thinks wrestling is even lower than politics, for Rao's tears' sake!  Besides, he doesn't know how to do it.”

 “Neither did you, honey-hair, before we put you through the program,” murmured Hira, reasonably.

 Nar said, “Look, sweet stuff.  Be reasonable.  A Supergirl / Superman match would knock your career into the exosphere.  It'd be the match every promoter would bargain with Death for.  You gotta at least consider it.”

 “I gotta at least totally ignore it.”  Kara was gripping the seat of her chair like it would take off through the window with her in it.  “I know Kal, Nar.  He was so totally against me wrestling that I didn't let him know for a whole year.”

 “Yeah.  But after that, you tell me he warmed up to it, even asked for some of your old videos.”  Nar knew how to play a fish, if he knew anything.  “Bet you this, Kara.  It's an Adam-and-Eve thing, to use a trope you're familiar with.  Now you've got a piece of glory on the new Krypton.  Now you're a celebrity, a sex symbol, on the world of his people.  Don't you think that might make him a little...jealous?”  He was grinning again.

 But Kara knew he had a point.  On Earth, Superman had always been the big dog, the superior partner, the Big Boss in all the superhero world.  On Rokyn, he was a distant figure, a heroic image, somebody who came to make a speech and tour a city every now and then, and she was the Girl of the Hour.

 It had to have put a burr in Kal's boot.

 “I don't know,” she said, cautiously.  “I just don't know how to break it to him.  I'm not a saleswoman.”

 “I'll do the selling, sweetlegs.  I'll also sweeten the pot.  Let's say I give 25% of the proceeds to a charity of his choice on Rokyn.  We could make it an exhibition match...the Hero of Krypton and the Golden Girl of Rokyn fighting for the Rokyn Children's Fund, or something like that.  He'll probably jump at it.”

 Hira put in her two credits' worth.  “There's more to it than that, Kara.  Your sex appeal brings in a jillion horny males to the arenas.  And a lot of girls come, too, because they admire you.  But we want to give the girls something to lust after, too.  And if you picture Kal's luscious pair of buns in a tight pair of trunks, and nothing else...”  Hira rubbed her hands together and smiled in an estrogen fantasy.  “We'd bankrupt Rokyn's treasury.”

 Kara would have slapped her if she'd been thinking straight.  But she was turning red, burying her head in her hands, and trying to figure out what her next words would be.

 “I'll talk to him,” she said.


 To his credit, Kal-El did not hit the ceiling.  But he gave Supergirl a firm no, and did not intend to change his mind.  He did, however, intend to watch the live feed of Kara's next match.

 That changed everything.

 Later that week, Kara was matched in a non-title fight against a new foe.  Her given name was Jaza Vor-Tonn, but she wrestled under the nom de guerre of Lady Jasmine.

 Both she and the match were a real bitch.

 Jasmine was easily as big an erotic draw as Supergirl.  She wasn't as pretty, but she was definitely sexy.  A dark-complected brunette, Jasmine had gotten into the wrestling game after a career as an athlete, a B-actress, and a model for Kandor's bathing suit emporia.  Her long hair hung to the middle of her back, she sported impressive pecs, had a D-cup bikini top, and had the longest legs in the wrestling ring, easily the alluring equal of Kara's.  Her brown eyes gave off an aura of seduction and arrogance, and when she smiled, she looked dangerous.

 She was a baddie, having learned early on that the audience responded well to a ruthless woman punishing a heroine in the ring.  Besides, she liked doing it.  There really was a turn-on factor in dominating a rival, at least in her mind, and she just loved to hear an opponent groan.  Couple that with her considerable bodily strength and stamina, and her impressive wrestling and fighting skills, and you had bad news all in one very attractive package.

 The wrestling moguls of Rokyn were beginning to see Jasmine as the anti-Kara, and they needed one.  After all, a champion is only as good as his, or her, competition.  And when Zora Vi-Lar had been knocked out of the picture, for however long that might be, they had lost a good chunk of change with her.

 Jasmine was more than willing to grapple with Supergirl.  In fact, the week she had learned of the booking, she'd issued a public brag stating that the Golden Girl of Rokyn was about as soft as gold, too, and she'd prove who was the real “girl of steel” when they got in the ring together.  “Supergirl, get ready to smell Jasmine!” boasted the beauty.

 So Kara, in a white bikini with the red “S” shield on the right breast (she wore the blue-and-red outfit only for title fights now), took on Jasmine in a thirty-minute battle.  It was painful for both women.  Kara was forced to grunt and groan from Jasmine's torture holds, but gave back as good as she got, punishing the vicious brunette with submission holds of her own.  Once, when howling from the pain of a figure-four leglock, Supergirl had to admit to herself that, before she'd learned to take punishment, the hold would easily have made her give.

 But, when Jasmine had gotten Kara on the mat and tried to give her a knee to the throat, the blonde pushed upward, regained her footing, and smashed her foe with an uppercut.  The villainess was dazed from the blow.  Kara took the opportunity to put her in a Japanese version of an abdominal stretch, with one of her legs wrapped about her foe's head, and pressured it hard until Jasmine had finally conceded.  Kara unwound her legs and went to her corner, looking back to see that Jasmine, who was picking herself off the mat, didn't try for a sneak attack.

 The official raised Kara's hand in victory.  But Jasmine gained two things from that night:  a knowledge of Supergirl's moves, and a burning hatred for her.

 Nar-Es turned to Hira and said, “I think we've got one half of the tag-team set.  Let's get the guys.”


 Both women wanted a rematch, but Nar and Hira had gotten together with Jasmine's manager, a woman named Vara Tol-Orri, and sold her on a mixed tag-team for variety.  “We need to build some heat between the girls before we do a title match,” said Hira.  “If there's just one fight before they go for the strap--”

 “Yeah, that's so much potential money down the spout,” agreed Vara, whose polished gold nails sported a real gold coating.  “But you talked about delivering Superman.  How does that work?”

 “It's not a done deal,” admitted Nar-Es.  “But we're working it as hard as we can from our end.  What can you do from yours?”

 Vara's green eyes blazed as she smiled, looking like the ruthless manipulator she was.  “Watch me,” she said.


 The next day, Jasmine appeared on the sports vids, in company with a blonde, 6' 5" bruiser who looked like Adonis via a steroid factory.  In fact, he was a premier male wrestler on Rokyn, and his name was Xar-Von.  Jasmine gave the impression they were lovers in the interview, though they weren't...not quite.

 “That little refugee from Argo City beat me by a cheap trick last time,” Jasmine declared, pointing her finger at the camera in time-honored wrestling tradition.  “This time, it isn't going to be so easy.  There's going to be two of us in the ring, my hunk Xar-Von and me, the Prime Package, against Kara Zor-El and whoever she wants to bring with her!  But she'd better not bring that idiot cousin of hers with that stupid spitcurl, because it'd really be a bring-down for her to see Xar dismember her big famous cousin the way I'm going to tear her apart!  Anyway, he's afraid to fight on Rokyn anyway, because here he wouldn't be able to fly out of the ring...except when Xar throws him out!  So Kara-baby, better get yourself somebody you can rely on, because in that ring next month, I'm going to smash you, I'm going to rip you, I'm gonna give you just a little taste of how you're gonna suffer when I fight you for the title belt!  Get ready,'re gonna smell Jasmine!”

 Xar had done his duty, standing there with crossed arms and stony countenance, saying nothing.  After the taping, he had one question:  “When are we going to do it together?”

 Jasmine had looked at him through half-lidded eyes.  “If we win, darling.  If we win, you're going to find out everything a woman can do for a man, except write his tax forms.”  She ran a finger under his chin.

 Xar smiled wolfishly, clenching his big fists.  “When we win, baby!  When we win!”


 And the day of the tag-team match came to be.

 Kal-El and Kara were in one corner.  Kal had insisted on not being billed as anything but “Supergirl's partner.”  It was all they could do to convince him not to wear a mask.  He wore black trunks and was barefoot, and was (in the opinion of most of the ladies watching) the best hunk of maleness they'd seen in a long, long time.  The video from this one would be snapped up by more women than had ever bought a Kara video before.

 Supergirl herself wore the white bikini with the red “S” shield on her right breast, barefoot and beautiful, a sexy wrestling nymph.  She tossed her hair to tease the crowd and looked coldly and defiantly at their opponents in the opposite corner.

 Jasmine looked just as she wanted to...a wicked turn-on for all the guys, the amoral villainess who could destroy Supergirl and all she stood for.  She wore her trademarked orange mini-bikini and came to the ring with her hair pinned up and confined in an orange headband, which gave her the chance to remove it, free her hair, and let the black tresses flow to the middle of her back, provoking a lusty cheer from the male crowd.  Jasmine gave Supergirl a cruel smile.  She wanted the match to begin, lusted for it.

 Xar, for his part, was a massive rack of muscles, lantern-jawed, golden-haired, green-eyed, in black trunks and bare feet, whose tanned body bespoke great power and whose grim-set face revealed that he knew how to use it.  The women of the crowd took note of another feature he was sporting, guessed Jasmine (or Kara, or perhaps both) was the cause, and loved it.

 There was no referee, but each team would lose points for violations of the rules, and if an injury was inflicted force-screens would materialize and separate all the players from each other.  The bout was to be two out of three submissions.

 Nobody had to be told that, even though Kal and Xar had never met, it was a grudge match all around.

 Kara turned to Kal.  “I'll take the first watch, cousin.  I just want to let you's going to be rough out there.  You're going to see me get hurt at times.  But I don't want you charging in here unless they double-team me.  Got it?”

 “Got it,” said Superman, feeling, for once, in an inferior position to his girl-cousin.

 The bell rang.  Actually, it was just a ringing tone from the arena's amplifiers, but it was the same thing.  The two wildcats in bikinis stepped away from their corners and circled in center ring.

 “Crush her, Kara,” said Superman, under his breath.

 Kara and Jasmine grappled, trading blows or knees to the body for openers, and tumbled to the mat.  The crowd cheered.  Both women were pulling hair and trying to get a scissors lock on each other.  Kara managed to get her legs around Jasmine, but the dark-haired femme fatale separated the limbs, got her own legs up against the blonde's chest, and thrust her away like a catapult.  Another big cheer.

 Kara got to her feet, lurching away from the enemy corner.  She didn't want Xar to get his hands on her and hold her prey for Jasmine's attack.  She had to admit that the black-haired bitch was one of the toughest foes she'd fought.  But Jasmine would probably have had to say the same about Supergirl.

 Kara bulled into Jasmine's bare midsection and got them both up against the ropes.  Jasmine turned her body so it was parallel to the ropes, grabbed Supergirl about the waist, upended her so that her head hung just below Jasmine's pelvis and her legs were dangling above Jasmine's head, and before Kara could form much more than a gee-this-is-gonna-hurt thought, piledrove her into the mat.


 The scream came from Kal, who was just about to enter the ring.  Kara, hurt and dazed, could barely turn her head to look at him.  She briefly shook her head.  In anguish, the hero of Krypton stepped back out of the ropes.

 Jasmine was sitting with her legs over Kara's arms, bending her foe's legs forward by the thighs until Kara's bare toes touched the mat.  It wasn't doing Supergirl's spine any good.  Something had to be done about the matter, thought Kara, and did it by managing to swing her feet together to whack Jasmine's head smartly between them.  The shock loosened the villainess's grip enough for Kara to power up so that she sat briefly on Jasmine's chest, holding her foe's legs
up in similar fashion.  Jasmine thrust out--her legs were spectacularly powerful--and both girls ended up lying on the mat.

 Supergirl got to her feet.  Time for Kal to learn all about taking bumps, she thought.  She sped to their corner and made the tag.


 “Yes?” said Superman, looking back at her as he climbed through the ring.

 “Don't do anything foolish.”

 He gave her an embarrassed look.

 Kal-El stepped to center ring, wondering what to do with himself.  Xar entered, getting a kiss from Jasmine on the way in.  “Break his bones!” she whispered as she stepped through the ropes.

 The two men circled.  Superman knew Klurkor, but deadly martial arts moves were forbidden.  He had learned some boxing moves from Muhammad Ali, and was a pretty fair scrapper, but this wasn't a boxing match.  It was time to put a month's worth of instruction into use.

 Except that Xar grabbed him and threw him to the mat like a sack of mail.

 Kara's hand went to her mouth, and Jasmine saw it, and made sure she saw Jasmine's smile.  The villainess clapped her hands and tried to lead the crowd in a “Xar!  Xar!  Xar!” chant, without much luck.

 Xar didn't seem to need much encouragement.

 He'd applied a stepover toehold to Kal's left leg and gotten the hero in pain.  Kal grabbed his thigh, gritted his teeth, and tried not to groan while looking for a countermove.  Then Xar wound their legs together in a figure-four leglock, lay back, and put enough pressure on Kal's legs to make a stone statue cry.

 It was enough to make Superman groan.

 Jasmine was doing a victory dance.  Kara was yelling for Kal not to give up, but wondering if he should.  Xar was enjoying himself immensely.  Kal was, in turns, embarrassed as hell and feeling like his legs were being crushed between two planets.

 “No!  Uhh--no!” grunted Superman, not wanting to give, but wondering how far he was from it.

 Xar let up, knowing he had to give the rubes a good show.  He unwound his legs from Superman's, and let his opponent get up and face him.  May as well check out what moves this amateur had, if any.

 It was a mistake, kind of.

 An angered Kal-El unleashed a dropkick that took Xar by surprise, bounced him off the ropes, and sent him back into a standing Superman.  Kal whacked him with a clothesline on the rebound--that much, at least, he's picked up, thought Kara--and saw him drop flat on his back.  Kal-El slammed down on his chest in a body press, spread-eagling and covering him for the pin.

 A few seconds later, he realized that there weren't any pins in this match.

 Xar lifted him and threw him off.  He monkey-flipped Kal into the enemy corner.  Jasmine went for his eyes.

 “KAL!” screamed Kara.  Luckily, Jas wasn't using her nails, just covering the bewildered hero's eyes with one arm while holding him across the neck with another.  Xar drew back a fist and planted it squarely in Kal's abs.  A rush of wind went out of Superman's lips.

 Jasmine let go.  Kal stood up, looked around, and stepped forward, to fall flat on his face as Xar tripped him.  The smirking villain then mounted Kal's back and wrenched his head back in a punishing chinlock.  To his credit, Kal did not whimper.

 Kara was clenching her hands so hard she was glad she'd had a manicure the day before.  Her cousin was getting hurt badly out there.  She had to admit it:  in-house training could help you, but nothing could really prepare you for real wrestling except real wrestling.

 Kal was much too far away for a tag.  He couldn't buck free of the hold, though he tried mightily.  Finally, he did the only thing he could logically do.

 “I submit,” he grunted.

 “Louder,” snapped Xar, not giving an iota.


 Xar released Superman, who went flat on the mat.  The blonde warrior held his powerful arms aloft, strutting in the ring.  Then he went to the corner, to collect another embrace and a peck on the cheek from Jasmine.  “Can I collect on this?” he whispered.

 “Don't be silly.  I have to beat the blonde,” she retorted, sotto voce.

 Xar kept his mouth smiling, but his eyes told a different story.

 Kal got up, rubbing his neck, and trudged over to Kara's corner.  He looked at her, not saying anything.

 “You did good, Kal,” said Kara, and meant it.  He was surprised.  “This guy is a tough professional.  You're green as grass.  You made him look bad out there for a few minutes.”

 “I did?”  Superman's shoulders were beginning to square again.

 “Of course you did.  Now, listen.  Jasmine and I are going to mix it up for a bit, then I'll tag out to you.  I don't want you to stay out there very long.  Keep away from his arms, throw him or something, just do something simple like that, and then come back over and tag me.  I'll take it from there.”

 “You got it, Karaish,” said Kal-El, and a confident smile returned to his face.  Maybe this wrestling game was something he could hack, after all...

 Kara positioned herself inside the ring ropes.  As the bell rang, she hoped Rao would forgive her for telling Kal a few white lies.

 The women circled in the ring a bit more cautiously now.  The only fall that could be left to chance was done, now.  Kara and Kal had to take this one, or she'd be on a crow diet for months.

 Supergirl let her foe make the first move, a good spin-kick that Kara took on her forearms.  She responded with a takedown that put Jasmine face-down on the mat, and wrenched the villainess's arm up painfully between her shoulders.  Jasmine cried out in pain.

 “Ready to give, rookie?” taunted Supergirl.

 “Not just yet, blondie!” grunted Jasmine, even as she kicked the mat.

 Supergirl maintained the hold for a half-minute, then tried to get the other arm to make it a double chicken-wing.  Jasmine, who was openly groaning by now, managed to twist free when Kara tried to secure the hold.  A savage chop to the side of the neck hurt Kara and sent her sprawling off.  Jasmine grabbed the blonde's right arm to control it, and wound her sexy but sinewy legs about Kara's middle.

 The blonde heroine couldn't hold back her groans of pain or her grimace.  The girl's body scissors was almost enough to cut her in two!

 Xar was having more luck in getting part of the crowd to cheer “Jas-mine!  Jas-mine!  Jas-mine!” than Jas had with her Xar cheerleading.  Kal immediately broke into a “Kar-a!  Kar-a!” chant that led the greater part of the crowd.   After a half-minute or so, Xar disgustedly broke off his efforts.  Let the bitch fight her own match!

 Revitalized by the crowd's chant, despite the blood rushing in her ears, a gasping Supergirl managed to grab Jasmine's bare feet and twist them apart, levering the girl's strong, tanned limbs far enough for her to slip free.  She got to her feet with the help of the ropes.

 Quick decision time, thought Kara.  Should I take a breather and let Kal have a few licks, or go on and finish up with this floozy now?

 She went over and tagged to Kal.

 Jasmine looked disgusted.  “Oh, yeah!  Gotta tag out to Big Brother instead of fighting me!” she yelled.  Nonetheless, she went to her corner, exited the ropes, and let Xar in.  He smiled at Kal and cracked his knuckles.

 Superman was determined not to make a bad showing this time.  He rushed over to Xar (surprising him; Xar had expected more caution), grabbed him by the head and flung him to the mat.  Then he elbow-dropped right to Xar's forehead.

 Then he groaned and grabbed his elbow, because Xar's skull was a lot tougher than his arm joint.  And he'd hit his funny bone to boot.

 Xar, his forehead hurting, was not amused.  He jumped to his feet, grabbed Kal, and applied a headlock.  The hero's face showed the agony.  Xar was grinding away at his jaw with no pity, and nobody could have blamed Kal if he'd given up.

 But he didn't.

 In one of the good moves he'd made that night, Kal bodily lifted Xar and whunked him across an outstetched knee.  It wasn't forceful enough to do much damage, but it did get Xar's brawny arms off his head and neck.  Kal was gratified by the cheer of the crowd.  Now he'd show little Kara some wrestling moves!

 Kara realized that was just what he was about to try, and clapped both hands to her temples.

 Kal got Xar in a full-nelson and began working the hold.  Xar let out a groan of anguish.  It was pure tonic to Kal, who smiled determinedly and exerted more force.  Xar was still on his feet and walking both of them around the ring.  Jasmine was howling for Xar to get loose and finish him, but Kara guessed that Xar wasn't as badly hurt as he was letting on.

 “Tag out to me, Kal!” she called out.  “Let me finish this up!”

 “No, Kara!  I think I can take...HIIIIMMM!” said Kal.

 That last word was given some emphasis due to the fact that Xar had managed to position himself correctly to leap back and smash Kal back-first into a turnbuckle.  It hurt.  The good guy released his grip enough for Xar to bull free, and he hip-tossed the contender to the center of the mat.  Then he stomped him in the stomach.

 “Kal!  Stop it, you sonofababootch!” yelled Kara.  The fans were wild, not wanting Superman to be disgraced thusly.  But Xar couldn't have cared less.  He was working for a reward that was more to him than money.

 Kal suffered a leg twist, a knee drop to the thigh, and then an airplane spin that ended with a drop across the knee.  This one was a lot more effective than Kal's maneuver.  The loggy Superman tried to get up, shaking his head, one hand to his back.  Xar grinned, grabbed him by the thigh and chin, and hoisted him over the ropes.


 Kara's tan went noticeably paler.

 She rushed to the cushioned mat apron and pulled her battered cousin up to a kneeling position.  Kal-El had seen better days.  “Is it over?  Did we get him?” he groaned.

 “No, Kal.  Kal, listen to me.  You have to get back in there and come over to my corner and tag me.  You have to do that right now, or we lose the match.  Do you understand?”

 “Sure, sure.  I understand.”  Kal mustered his resources, got up, and grabbed the bottom rope.  Xar was in center ring, jumping up and down and waving his hands.  Jasmine was in her corner, hooting and clapping her hands above her head.  Nobody could accuse them of being late to their own party.

 Kal rolled back into the ring and Kara went to her nearby corner.  Xar went over to Superman, lifted his head by the hair, and whomped his face down on the mat.  He was enjoying his work.

 Jasmine called out, “Don't, Xar!  Let him tag out!  I've gotta beat the blonde!”

 Kara caught the notion and yelled up at the mikes, “Yeah, folks.  You wanna see me and Jasmine in action, don't'cha?  Let 'em hear it!”

 That was all the crowd needed.  The chant of “KA-RA!  KA-RA!  KA-RA!” went up as if she was a poltician at a rally.  Supergirl beamed.  Jasmine looked miffed, to have this girl steal her thunder.

 Regretfully, Xar stopped trying to yank Kal's head off and let the weary hero stumble over to his corner and slap Kara's outstretched hand.  Kara vaulted over the ropes and held her arms up high for a moment, playing to the crowd with a smile.  They roared their approval.

 Xar stayed in the ring for a few seconds.  “Well, what are you waiting for, Bizarro-brain?” snapped Kara, hands on her lovely hips.  “I don't do mixed fights!”

 It was just to give Jasmine time to make a more spectacular entrance.  Preening like a working girl on the make, she struck a couple of poses, blew a kiss to some of the wolf-howlers, and posed atop the top turnbuckle with her legs spread wide.  Then she jumped into the ring and Xar got out.

 When she faced Kara, Jasmine was all business.  “I'm gonna knock you outta your panties, babe,” she snarled as they circled.

 “Glad somebody reminded you to wear yours,” retorted Kara.  That got to Jas.  They closed and started pulling hair.

 The catfight tactics turned the audience on, and the howls and foot-stomping were never higher.  The girls rolled around on the mat, Jasmine trying to bite and scratch.  Kara elbowed her hard under the chin.  Jasmine fell back, grabbing at the place where she'd been hit.

 Kara followed up with a hair-mare, a knee-drop to the stomach, and a leg split.  Jasmine was howling in pain.  The blonde couldn't say she wasn't enjoying it, and added to the punishment with an ankle twist, holding one of Jasmine's feet down with her own foot.

 The brunette moaned, her hair spread out like a cloud on the mat.  She shook her head from side to side.  She grasped her head, she grasped her thigh.  She tried to get loose, but Kara wouldn't let her.  And she was too far away from her corner for Xar to try any funny stuff.

 Kal, coming back to his faculties, was cheering Kara on from his corner.  So were the fans.  The Golden Girl of Rokyn, working in a toe-bend, smiled and said, “Better give up, honey.  I can keep this on all night.”

 “!” howled Jasmine.  This witch was a lot stronger and a lot more skilled than she'd expected.  She bit her lower lip, but the pain wasn't lessening.  She couldn't reach Kara effectively from her position.  When she tried to reach up, Kara increased the pressure and Jasmine had to fall back.

 “All right...all right...I GIVE!” shouted Jasmine.  The bell rang, Kara let go and backed off, and the crowd gave the heroic pair a standing O.  Kara went back to her corner and collected a big hug from Superman.  She kissed his cheek and returned the hug.  She made sure the still-shot takers had enough time to get their picture.

 Superman was beaming.  “Everything I said about your wrestling, I take back now, Kara.  You're magnificent.”

 “Thanks, Kal,” smiled Kara.  “Now listen carefully.  You've done enough already, and we're tied up with those idiots.  For this round, I want you to stay in your corner, and let Jasmine and me finish things up.  Okay?”

 “But Kara--”

 “No buts, Kal!”  She gave him a no-nonsense look.  “Leave this one to the ladies.  Understood?”

 Kal sighed.  “Understood, Kara.”

 The freshener spray came down and spritzed both couples, getting rid of the sweat and smell and getting their hair back in manageable condition.  Kara and Jasmine took brushes from ringside kits and made their manes attractive again. Then, looking like beach beauties crossed with panthers, they entered the ring at the bell.

 One thought crossed Kal-El's mind before the action started again:

 If he'd been trying, Antonino Rocca could've creamed me!

 Kara and Jasmine faced off, circling, feinting, waiting for the first good chance.  Supergirl sensed something in Jasmine's eyes, something more than anger and determination and confidence.  She couldn't quite get at it, but she didn't like it a bit.

 The blonde struck first with a shoulder throw, but Jasmine rolled with it and sent Kara down to the mat with a bang.  Then she tucked Kara's arm underneath her armpit and worked over the limb with both hands, putting her foe in a painful armbar.  Kara shut her eyes, grabbed her shoulder, and kicked the mat with one foot.  Jasmine was pleased.

 Jasmine jerked the arm, getting Kara's shoulder off the mat, then got to her feet, still maintaining the hold.  Supergirl was still hurting, trying to get out of the grip.  Instead, Jasmine wrung her arm in a circle, and Kara went off her feet in a flip and back to the mat again.  Jasmine set her bare feet against Kara's neck and armpit in a terrible arm stretch, and the heroine openly groaned in pain and banged the mat with her free hand.

 “This is just the beginning, little girl,” snarled Jasmine as she intensified the pressure.  Kara was trying to roll up onto Jasmine's body and out of the hold, but no luck thus far.  She felt as though Jasmine would pull her arm out of its socket.  Gritting her teeth, the white-bikinied girl got to her feet, with Jasmine still holding on to the stretch, lying on her back.  Supergirl fell back to the mat, unable to break the grip.  “Ohhh...” she groaned, knowing that she was in real trouble this time.

 Kal was clenching his fists and hollering, “Kara!  Get out of it!  Break the hold!”

 Irritated, she yelled back, “It's not that easy, Kal!”

 Jasmine leaned back farther, snickering.  “It sure isn't, blondie.”  Kara howled and kicked both feet on the mat.

 The villainess stretched Kara's hurt arm against the mat, positioned her hands on the girl's wrist and armpit, and jumped up, coming down with her knee on Kara's bicep.  The blonde heroine screamed in pain.  Jasmine let go, and Supergirl rolled away, clutching her arm.

 Supergirl dragged herself up on the ropes.  Jasmine was behind her in an instant, pulling up the hurt arm into a hammerlock, while levering Kara's head back with her other arm.  The pain showed on the heroine's face.  Jasmine's eyes were aglow with a terrible lust.

 Desperately, Kara struck back with repeated elbows to the labonza.  By the third strike, Jasmine was grunting in pain.  But she had a belly Jane Fonda would have envied.  The white-clad blonde was lucky to be able to reach behind her and throw Jasmine overhead to the mat.  It was time to take the offensive.

 Before Jasmine could get off the mat, Kara did a double knee-drop to her stomach.  Jasmine was hurt.  In anger, Kara got on top of her foe and, grabbing Jasmine's head in both hands, banged it into the mat again and again.  The crowd applauded, and began to count them off:  “Three...four...five...six...”

 Around ten, Jasmine raked Kara's eyes with her claws and the blonde beauty lurched off.

 While Kara rubbed her eyes, Jasmine struck with a double axehandle to the back.  The crowd booed.  Kara went on hands and knees.  Looking haughty and grim, Jasmine kicked her hard in the side.  The blonde spun around and lay panting on the mat, feeling as though her ribs had been struck by a maul.

 Ruthlessly, Jasmine grabbed Kara by the hair, dragged her up, and propelled her in a rush to the enemy corner, where Xar was sticking his knee out.  It met Kara's forehead with a crash.  He smiled.

 Kal-El rushed over outside the ring to pursue Xar.  Xar led him a merry chase around the ring, but the officials halted both and got them back in their corners.  Superman glared hot steel at Xar and wished that once, just once, he retained heat-vision powers under a red sun.

 Inside the ring, Jasmine ruled.  She banged Kara's head into the turnbuckle and watched her bounce off and lie flat on her back.  She jumped up and did a guillotine leg drop across her foe's throat.  Kara was struggling for consciousness.  Jasmine wrapped her long, sexy legs around Kara's head and smiled as she applied terrific power to the head scissors.  The blonde girl's struggles were lessening.

 Jasmine sensed that she could knock Kara out with the hold.  She didn't want that.  Nothing but a submission would do.

 Unwinding her legs, Jasmine pulled Kara up, her hands under the blonde's chin, and extended one knee, then dropped Kara so that her crotch contacted Jasmine's knee.  A horrible groan sprang from her lips at the impact.  Supergirl clutched herself as she writhed on the mat.

 Jasmine stood up, smiled, and preened herself for the crowd.  There were boos, but, satisfyingly, a few cheers.  Lots of guys like to see the heroines take a beating, she reflected, and that's what I'm here for.

 The villainess turned the hurting heroine onto her stomach, then grabbed her lovely bare legs, doubled them at the knees, and criss-crossed them at the ankles.  Then Jasmine sat on the blonde's trapped legs, pushing down on her bare feet to increase the torture.  Kara began to moan and groan.  “ more,” she begged.

 In response, Jasmine began to twist the blonde's bare toes.  It made Kara groan harder.  Jasmine threw back her head, her eyes closed and her mouth grinning a grin of terrible delight.

 The toehold torture went on and on.  Jasmine wouldn't get off.  Kara couldn't escape.  They were too far away from Kara's corner for her to tag out.  Kal was beside himself with anguish.  Minute after minute, Jasmine kept pressuring the legs and feet and twisting the toes, sweaty, beautiful, and sadistic.  Kara moaned and groaned, slapping the mat, reaching out to try and drag herself forward futilely.

 She was beaten, but refused to acknowledge it.

 Even Jasmine became concerned.  But she wasn't concerned enough to ease up on Supergirl.  If she had to sit on this all night to make the blonde submit, that was just what the dark beauty intended to do.  And she had to admit the girl's groans of pain were quite...satisfying.

 “No more, no more, I--” Supergirl caught herself.  She bit her lips as she slapped the mat.

 “You what?” said Jasmine, loudly.  She bore down harder on the girl's legs.  “You what?  Say it!”

 “I--I--”  Kara shook her head.  She didn't want to do it.  To be beaten by this bitch was intolerable.  But...

 Jasmine twisted harder, making Kara scream as if both legs had been pierced through and through by pitchforks.

 “I give!  I give!  I--I give!” sobbed the heroine.

 That was it.

 Slowly, Jasmine got off of Kara's back, then bent down and did something only a few fans caught, thinking instead that the victorious brunette was whispering a few words to her beaten foe.

 Jasmine kissed the back of her head.

 Then she stood up, breathing heavily, and regarded the beaten blonde before her.  Jasmine tossed back her head and laughed, long and cruelly.  She motioned for the mikes.

 “There's your champion!  Beaten and crying!  And that's just what she'll be doing the next time we meet, because I demand a championship match!  The next time we fight, Kara Zor-El, I'll take that precious belt from you...and you'll be lucky if you're awake to see it!”

 Kara, her face tear-streaked, massaged life back into her legs, one at a time.  She was going to need some time off before she fought her next foe, and she didn't want to see Jasmine at all for awhile.  Kal was in the ring, at her side, brandishing a fist at Jasmine to keep her away.  Jasmine blew Kal-El a kiss, then pranced over to her corner and gave Xar an open-mouthed smooch that practically levitated him to the ceiling.

 “Can we--” gasped Xar.

 “Yes, darling.  Once we're back in the dressing room.”  Jasmine did a few pin-up poses for the crowd, and then flounced off to the tunnel, Xar and her manager in tow.  Covertly, Jasmine gave Xar a look of disgust.  The things I have to do for this job, she thought.

 The booing was loud, but it was intermixed with some cheers for Jasmine.  Clearly, a segment of the crowd had a new favorite.  Kara registered it, and knew she'd have some work before her in keeping her popularity as well as her number-one spot.  Kal-El, Nar-Es, and Hira were helping her to her feet.  A few newsies were shoving mikes at her.

 “Kara, when do you think you'll fight Jasmine again?” shot one of them.

 “After I stop hurting,” she replied, tersely.

 Another one practically shoved a mike into her bosom, and thundered, “What do you think about Jasmine now?”

 Kara sighed, fixed the guy with a stare, and said, “She's good.  Very good.  But the next time, it'll be just me and her.  And I promise, you'll see a different match than you did today.  Now, goodbye.”

 She turned away, with Nar draping her robe over her shoulders.  The newsies followed the foursome out of the ring, asking, “Will you give Jasmine a title match?”, “Do you think you can take her after today?”, “Give us a date for the rematch, Kara!”, and on and on.  Neither Kara, Kal, Nar, or Hira said a word until they were well into the tunnel.

 Superman noticed none of the questions had been for him.  He wondered if he should be offended, or grateful.

 At the dressing room door, Kara, still lovely in bikini and robe, turned to her cousin and broke the silence.  “Kal?”

 “Yes, Kara?”

 She regarded him, her hand on the door control.  “Next time...leave the wrestling to me.”

 And they all went in, Kal-El bringing up the rear.