A heavily pregnant woman is determined to work right up until her baby arrives – as a sword swallower!
Veronica Hernandez, 27, performs the wince-inducing act on stage in Knox City, Texas, and says she's addicted to the rush of the danger.
She told The Dallas Morning News: "It's kinda like a danger factor, I love the adrenaline. I'm also a believer the body can do so many crazy things you have no idea."
In an eye-watering video for TV news, the mum-to-be – with her bump very much on show – gingerly lowers a 14-inch blade down her throat and then pulls it back out again.
The shocked news presenter said Veronica only appeared to have slightly watery eyes after the stunt.
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And Veronica is very much unfazed, despite it curling the toes of many viewers.
She said: "This is real. You know, a real blade is going inside my oesophagus and down."
Veronica said it took her two-and-a-half years to learn sword swallowing from another experienced performer.
She uses a blunt blade but the sword could still have a potentially fatal effect.
As the steel implement slips down her throat, it passes by her heart and between her lungs and into her stomach.
However, pregnancy has meant she's had to adapt a little and so she's changed the way she stands so her vital organs are aligned in the correct way.
Veronica already has one child, though she stopped sword swallowing during that pregnancy.
However, after being coached by another performer and with advice from a chiropractor and doctor, she decided it was safe to continue and she'll perform at World Sword Swallower's Day on February 28 in Grand Prairie - that's if her baby doesn't arrive early.
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