Part one: The interview
A stately room seems to be the scene for today’s show. Set up in a similar way to anyone that had ever seen a one on one interview with a member of Britain’s royal family. Red and gold hues adorn the walls, looking similar to the backdrop within Buckingham palace. Two comfortable looking high-back chairs sit in the middle of the room, surrounded by lighting and cameras. One was already filled with a well dressed woman, looking sharp as hell in her grey, pinstriped pants suit. Blonde hair tied up into a tight bun atop her head, half moon glasses perched on the edge of her nose. She seems to be having a hushed conversation with one of the cameramen operating the large tv cameras.
The conversations stop as a door at the end of the room opens up, and Danny B steps through. Dressed to the nines himself in his tradeblack three piece black suit, accompanied with a pristine white shirt and baby blue tie. A slight shiner shows through on his right eye, but besides that slight blemish, he looks to be the picture of wealth and luxury. Draped over his shoulder, shining in the bright lights of the room, is the newly won Paramount Championship title.
He takes a moment to shake a few hands, exchanging a few pleasantries before taking a seat in the chair opposite the interviewer, undoing his jacket and resting the championship against his midriff, ensuring that it would be seen when the lights were on him.
Another minute of hushed conversations pass, and finally, she is counted in and is ready to turn on the questions.
“Good morning America, Alicia Dees here coming to you live for Entertainmen-TV, and today we finally have someone that we have been trying to get on this show for a long time. Coming off a hot win in which he won the CWF Paramount Championship for the first time in his career, the man known as ‘The Brighton Beast,’ please welcome, ‘The Ripper’ Danny B.”
The view pans from Alicia to Danny, wearing a trademark cheesy grin on his face.
“Now, I guess the easiest thing to start with is to ask how you’re feeling?”
Danny’s face contorts into mock thought as he takes a moment to come up with an answer he didn’t need a second to think about.
“If I’m being honest Leesh, can I call you Leesh?”
She opens her mouth to respond, but he continues speaking before she had a chance, leaving her looking a little affronted by his gall.
“Thanks Leesh. If I’m being honest I have some mixed emotions right now about the whole thing. Yes, don’t get me wrong, sitting here with a belt with my name on it feels exactly right, honestly going into that match there was no other outcome.
However, there is so much that doesn’t feel right. Like the fact that I was in that match in the first place when we all know that I should have been in the main event, a main event that would have had the exact same outcome. That aside however, there is something else that is on my nerves as we speak. Duce Jones.
See the world is now alight with scuttlebut. Whispers and comments that say I wouldn’t be sat here with this gold right now if it wasn’t for him. That kind of shit gets on my nerves.”
Alicia flinches at the cuss word that escapes Danny’s mouth and moves to remind him that this is for daytime TV, but is unable to get a word in edgewise as he just keeps on talking.
“Duce Jones was nothing more than a distraction for me. The idea that the only reason I won that match is because of what Duce did when he decided that he couldn’t be asked with the match anymore? Really people? That yellow-bellied hunk of crap realised that he couldn’t in a million years ever layeth the smackethdown on the greatest to ever lace up a pair of boots and vamooshed when his senses finally caught up to him.
To anyone thinking that Duce was the one who is responsible for me sitting here with this belt right now, I urge you to go back and watch the match again. There wasn’t a moment in that bout where I wasn’t the center of attention, where I wasn't the one everyone was watching. The whole damn time, bell to bell, I was the star of that match, just as I am in every match I’m in.
This whole narrative that Duce is responsible for my win can go the way of the dodo, anyone that thinks otherwise can step inside the ring with me and we can see just who is the baddest bastard on the planet.”
He leans back, a little bit of annoyance etched on his face.
“Danny can I please remind you not to swear during this interview? With that said, it was rumoured that you weren’t planning on sticking around with the CWF once the Alpha and Omega tournament had come to an end. What is your status with the company, and indeed as an active competitor?”
He stays relaxed for this question, looking almost nonchalant as he speaks.
“I’m working out of contract, have been the entire time during this run. Truth is I could have and still could disappear at any time. Simple fact of the matter is that the CWF doesn’t have enough money to tie me down to a contract. That said, unlike most of the chumps that lace up a pair of boots these days, I take being a champion seriously. For the time being for the very least, while I hold this belt, I ain’t going nowhere, as much as some people would like to see me gone.”
“OK, thanks for that, I’m sure the CWF fans will be appreciative of your dedication to the title.”
He sneers at this comment, his friendly demeanour slipping further away with every word she speaks.
“With that said, the tournament is well and truly over now, can I get your thoughts on the eventual winner and the brand new world champion, Silas Atoria?”
He actually rolls his eyes at this question. A deep sigh proceeds possibly the most half-assed answer so far.
“Who? Are you trying to say that while you have me sat here, and you could ask any questions about anything I have done over the last ten years in this business, you’re going to focus on what I think of the most overrated twat in the entire fucking company? I tell you what I think of that idiot. I think he just beat someone who I trounced a number of weeks back. Someone who couldn’t hold a candle to me. Now we’re supposed to celebrate the fact that he squeaked past Styles? Go and ask him how he’s feeling, and if he answers anything other than ‘I’m just thankful I didn’t have to beat The Ripper’ then he’s lying out of his ass.
Don’t get it wrong girl, it doesn’t matter who holds what belt, I am still the top draw in this company, the master of the mat, and the single most dangerous SOB to ever step between the ropes in a CWF ring. Let me tell you one thing, and listen bloody carefully, while I still feel like stepping through that curtain, I will go out that and break every one of your damn heroes. Frankly, there will come a time that that kid in the office has no choice but to give me the title shots, because I will leave no one else behind. I have no problem holding all the gold and showing everyone just why I am who I say I am. Are we done here? Good.”
And with that he simply rises from his chair, and without saying another word carries his belt out of the room.
Stunned, Alicia turns back to the camera.
“Well, I guess that’s our interview with CWF Paramount Champion Danny B… join us next time when we sit down with CWR Eternal Champion Sara Storm. I’ve been Alcia Dees and you’ve been Entertained.”
Part 2: The Story
It was a snowy day in New York City, forcing a distinctive change in appearance for The Ripper. The traditional suit was covered by a heavy looking winter coat, his long blonde hair hidden underneath a beanie hat. The weather might not have been the greatest, but the want to walk through Times Square had grabbed hold of him, and for reasons even he couldn’t explain, he found himself taking a stroll through the hustle and bustle of Christmastime New York City.
Between the regularly grumpy commuters, the shoppers and the ever-present tourists, this probably wasn't the best time for a little walk, but he needed it to clear his head. These past few weeks had been exhausting. His mind and body were tired, and at this point, all he needed was some headspace. He was going to lay over at JFK before heading straight to Pittsburgh, but then the announcement had come through that his scheduled rematch with Amy Jo Smyth had become a Paramount title match without him being told.
The anger, the rage, the betrayal, the exhaustion. It was all starting to build up. Without some time to settle down and take stock of his own life, it would boil over. That wouldn't be good for anyone.
To make matters worse, he hadn't heard from any member of the Family since that day in Egypt. Understandable of course, but it was still an issue for him.
It had all built up to the point where he needed somewhere he could be at home, and be invisible. So much of his career, both in the ring and in business ventures had been linked the apartment on the Upper East Side. That is where he had lay his head after many long nights, long meetings and long flights. That was the place he would soothe his aching muscles, treat his wounds and lay out his battleplans. He may have given it over to Claudia and Lexi, but something told him that neither would be there at the moment, and he was right to think so.
So, he had his home, he had his ability to vanish into plain sight, so what about his chance to clear his head? That one wasn’t so easy. As he weaved in and out of manic native New Yorkers and tourists alike he attempted to gather his thoughts, but each time was like trying to keep a captured snowflake. Every time he thought he had got something straightened out, it melted away, causing him to lose the chain of thought.
Truth was, he didn’t want to work through it all, he didn’t want to get to the bottom of it, the only thing he wanted was to put all of this behind him and move on with his life.
I mean, his personal life was falling apart around him and in his professional life he wasn’t being challenged in any way or form. What was the point in immediately after winning a match he couldn’t possibly have lost, was he put into a match with someone that he should have embarrassed into early retirement if she had any common sense?
Snow was falling, all around him, children were playing, having fun, it was the season for love and understanding, but a Merry Christmas, this was not. That’s when it hit him. Literally.
A leaflet from FAO Schawrz had flown through the air and smacked him in the face, true comedy style. A brief moment later, a smattering of laughter started up around him as those who had seen the incident couldn’t contain their mirth at the obviously ridiculous set of events that had unfolded before them. For a second or two, Danny stood stock still, not reacting in anyway shape of form. Then, as another gust of wind blew the thing away from him and down the street, he did something he hadn’t done in a very, very long time. He broke into down in a fit of laughter.
The sheer ludicrousness of the whole thing overtook him and he just wailed away, bending over double as he was unable to catch his breath. He proved infectious, as those around him who had been unable to hold it in also couldn’t help but laugh again, and for a brief moment, on that small stretch of pavement, outside the Capital One Bank in NYC, a group of complete strangers were all sharing a wonderful moment of true, unadulterated joy. That moment lasted what seemed to be forever, but eventually, as all good things do, it came to pass and people began to carry on with their day. Still snickering in their own little groups, walking in different directions, turning different corners. Throughout that day they would remind their friends, tell new family members, share the story with colleagues.
That one little insignificant moment in the grand scheme of things would end up bringing joy to so many people in such a miserable time to be a human on this Earth. He too walked away, still letting lose a small smirk every now and again. His spirits felt higher than they had in a long time, because he reminded himself of the most important fact in his life. When he wanted it to, he could make the world revolve around him. He never needed anyone before, so why start now?
This thought cheered him up so much that he decided to head to Starbucks, grab a festive coffee and then enjoy Manhattan as a tourist for a while. Wasn’t something he got to do much anymore, and there are few better places in the world for the wealthy to just go and have a good time.
Part 3: The Promo
He’d forgone the whole single chair in a dark room troupe for this particular case. No, instead he’d set up in his old East Side Apartment. The long white open plan room looked utterly unused from the last time he was there. The same bottles were still on the countertop, the same (now not so pleasant) food was in the fridge. Neither Lexi nor Claudia had been back since he picked them up to head to Mexico.
He did wonder where they were, and indeed if they were OK, but that wasn’t the focus right now. No, his focus was on the camera that had been set up facing the long white leather couch against the back wall of the room, upon which he was sitting, tumbler in hand, ready to tackle his latest opponent.
“Do you ever get that feeling of Deja Vu? You know when the same thing happens twice in a short space of time? Because I have that right now, I have that feeling of having to talk about a match I was only talking about a couple of weeks ago.
Do you know why that is? Because I am literally talking about a match I had a couple of weeks ago.
In that incidence, I spent a long time detailing the history I have with Amy Jo Smyth, analysing how we had changed as people, how each of us had grown since the last time we had met inside the ring, yet how we had both managed to remain strong, unstoppable forces within this business.
The first time we fought we were both untouchable, both undefeated, we were the immovable force and the unstoppable object. Neither of us could budge, until you did Amy.
This past time, we weren’t quite riding the same highs as before, but recent events had brought a lot of intrigue to our roles as competitors, because instead of being the undefeated monsters, we had been the ones to take them down. When Freddie Styles and Zolton fell at our hands, the world was suddenly paying attention to a true clash of the titans. Yet, when push came, there was no shove. There was no return, no fight. You checked out Amy, and fell to me in one of the most disappointing squashes of my career.
I find myself pushed up against a wall here. See, due to how things played out before, you have a fresh opportunity to use any and all barbs you have been saving for years, a fresh perspective. I find myself unable to retread old waters, unable to use the same phrasing, the same history. It does seem that you’re the one with a distinct advantage in that case.
So, I say this with all the confidence in the world Amy Jo. Come at me with everything you have, use everything you never had a chance to use before. I will spend my time formulating new quips, I will spend my time fletching new arrows to which I will apply my poison.
I considered you my most formidable challenge in the tournament, so much so that I overlooked so many others, a fault that cost me my shot at the top. I phoned it in the whole way until Freddie, because you were the one in my sights.
Was that a mistake? Certainly seems so now doesn't it? You will talk about a consolation prize, but where was mine? What? This shitty white belt that says that I am one of the best?
This belt I now hold used to be for up and comers, those who hadn't yet found their feet. To hold it in this company, with the experience I have, with what I have done? That's a fucking insult right there.
Do you know what else I find insulting? Is that only a few weeks shy of whopping your ass all over Cacun, I have to fight you right here and now. What the actual fuck have you done to deserve another shot at me?
Amy, you're always going to be remembered as the chick who couldn't get it done. Always fell hard when it mattered.
What happens when I beat you this time? Are you just going to get shot after shot at making something of yourself because people feel sorry for you?
We've been around this rollercoaster before, and I have thrown everything I have at you. You've tried to come back at me, tried to avoid what I have for a chance to throw something in return, but you miss in both cases every single time.
How many times have you got to lie bleeding and broken on that canvas, listening to my music play before you realise that it's time to back all the fucking way off and leave me be?
The triple-crown career woman. The cop turned scientist turned wrestler. How many more career choices must you embarrass yourself in before you just fuck off and leave good people alone?
Fuck the poison arrow mentality, fuck the slow death by destruction methodology. This time Amy Jo, I cock the Colt and I drive a .45 right through that dead heart of yours.
Come at me with your 'flashy' offence and well thought out 'game plan.' Use some of that 'determination.' Fight as hard as you think you can. This fucking fantasy of yours ends this week. I'm done with you. We are all done with you.
I want no more excuses, no more politicking. Being your fucking A game girl, because when I rip your very fucking soul out in front of the world, I want to watch as your eyes beg for it all to end. I want to watch as you realise that every fucking word I have said about you is true.
You are nothing. You have always been nothing. You will always be nothing.
This is no longer a friendly competition, this is no longer a contest between rivals. You crossed Hell's gate with your middle finger raised one too many times. You've got the devil on your back with the Angel's blade focused squarely on your chest.
Tie that pretty little blonde hair of yours in a tight knot, paint on a face of a warrior, and prepare to fail. This experiment, has come to it's natural conclusion. The. Fucking. End.