Needless to say, my first pursuit of the World Championship did not go as planned. I walked back up the ramp past Milenko as the champ stood in the ring celebrating her title defense. I had watched MJ’s “interview” earlier in the night when she said that Loki was the best of The Hostile Takeover. She seemed to think that Tobias and I were just lackeys or errand boys for Milenko and Loki. I pause next to Milenko and he says to me.
James Milenko: So much for intentions huh?!
I give him a hard look but bite back my comment as I continue up the ramp and thru the gorilla position. I ignore the people who are gathering to congratulate Flair when she comes through the curtain and continue to the locker room that we share as a team. Neither Tobias or Loki are around so I wander over to the bench and sit down heavily. I pick up the towel and scrub my face and my hair somewhat dry before flinging it over my shoulder so that the towel is hanging half in back and half in front of me.
Jimmy Allen: Tonight, your champion, your hero prevailed once again. I’ll make no excuses, tonight your champion was better and smarter than I was. The one thing I noticed is how the fans buy into her bull shit. She will use, how should I say it….controversial means to achieve her goals. Again, not an excuse, just an observation how everyone buys into her hype. No one buys into it more than Flair herself. Not that you asked for it, but some advice going forward….buyer beware. When you get to the point that you believe in your own hype so much that fact and fiction begin to blur. Well, there are….there are consequences for every action. You will definitely be experiencing this first hand very, very soon. You can call it bravado, egotism, misogynistic or whatever you’d like little girl. The next time we are in the ring together I’m going to fucking end you. I will leave you broken in that ring child and I’ll make no apologies for it when I take that world title from you. That is provided you survive your next match. We are far from done little one, the fun is just beginning.
My phone buzzes and I look at the message.
“Leaving for the airport in 30.”
I acknowledge the text and turn towards the shower, grabbing my bag I make my way to the back.
24 hours later
The only constant in my world is that five a.m. and I do not get along, the alarm from my Motorola Z series phone began to play something from Trans Siberian Orchestra as it often does this time of year. Yes, after Halloween I like Christmas music….don’t judge. I slide the bar on my screen and begin the waking up process and all that entails. I sit on the side of the bed feeling everything given the night before at Evolution. It was time to get back to work but first things first….Coffee. I hear the coffee pot chime, letting me know that it’s ready. I walk to the kitchen barefooted and pour my first cup.
Jimmy Allen: Well, good morning Lord Vader
I watch as the heat of the coffee activates the red light saber on the coffee cup and smile. The coffee cup had been a christmas gift from Chloe a few years ago. I go to the laundry room and grab a clean pair of pants, buttoning them up and go back and grab my coffee and the open pack of cigarettes. I had tried to quit smoking several times but the vapes out there just don’t do it for me. I set the coffee and the pack of smokes down and happen to look at the wall where pictures of family hang. Pictures of my mother and father, my sister Jules, her kids and the one that would seem out of place. A picture of me holding a very young Chloe Hawkhurst. The picture had been taken at the hospital roughly forty eight hours after she was born. Swaddled in clean linen, she was adorable and oh so vulnerable. I smile fondly at that picture, and sigh, why couldn’t Dorian just listen I wonder to myself. The team we would have been I think…..
Jimmy Allen: Now is not the time for reflection I muse to myself. No, that ship has sailed and wrecked upon the rocks of professional wrestling. A fantastically unforgiving bitch of a coral reef that we all live in, live for and can’t stay away from.
I take another sip of my coffee, black, no cream or sugar. Then the cigarette, I inhale deeply as an alert comes up on my phone from Yahoo News.
“New Study finds that people who drink their coffee black are psychopaths.”
I laugh as I set the phone back down, dismissing the news article. I take another sip of coffee, followed by another drag off of the cigarette. My phone chimes again, I look at the message from Milenko.
“I’m booking you against Silas Artoria, don’t fuck this up. The winner will be competing at a pay per view put on by WCWA. When Worlds Collide, It’s for their U.S. Title.”
I send him back a picture, a stock photo I have of my middle finger extended.
Jimmy Allen: That’s what I think about that. Moron.
I probably shouldn’t do shit like that, he is my boss after all, but like I give a fuck. I’ve been fired by better and worse men than him. I hear the chime as another message comes in.
Jimmy Allen: It’s fucking grand central station around here this morning.
I check the message, this one is from Jules, my sister is a sweet woman, probably too kind for her own good.
“Can we talk? I hate that you have pushed your family away, and for what Jimmy?”
Jimmy Allen: Because little sis, you can’t walk the path I’m walking, none of you can.
I send her back a response that contradicts what I verbalized just now.
“Sure thing Sis, coffee shop in downtown Wylie work for you?”
A few moments later I get a single word reply of yes and I dismiss the message. My sister lived a couple of towns over in the small town of Lucas, Texas. She would likely arrive before I did. Then a follow up message letting me know she’d be there in thirty minutes. I crush out the cigarette and swallow down the last of my coffee as I head for the bathroom…
Jules and I had been talking for what seemed like hours, the topics ranged from was I still a whore, dating strippers to why the fight between Dad and I happened. Truth be told, the fight was by design, his design to be more accurate. Sometimes cutting the cord was as much virtual as it was literal. I open my wallet and a photo, a replica of the one hanging in my living room tumbles onto the table. Jules picks it up and smiles.
Jules Walker: I remember that day! She was so precious.
I smile fondly remembering the day well. Dorian had been sober, thought that didn’t last too long after she was born. That was a decade ago, times, people and other things had changed significantly.
Jimmy Allen: Now she’s pretentious.
Jules glares at me, then her reaction softens and she pats me on the arm.
Jules Walker: Brother dear, your waffle making skills are lacking. You do realize that right?
I can’t help but laugh and shake my head.
Jimmy Allen: Yes sis, my waffles suck. My fried chicken does not though.
Atlantic City, New Jersey
48 hours later
The Offices of Jonathan Ernst
Mr. Ernst and I had been talking for almost an hour about all the details. He had confirmed what I believed in that Chloe was being put in harm’s way by her father allowing her to be his manager. Then came the moment of truth.
Jimmy Allen: So how much to retain your services then?
After a long silence he finally speaks handing the document back to me.
Jonathan Ernst: I won’t be taking your case Mr. Allen.
The confusion must have been evident on my face as I respond.
Jimmy Allen: Excuse me? I don’t follow, you just told me that you agree with what I’ve told you and that I have a case, but you won’t take my case?
He leans back in his chair and brushes the stray hair away from his eyes.
Jonathan Ernst: That’s right, I will not be taking this on, especially after what I saw you do to one of our own last night. That little girl would be no safer with you than she is with her father.
I shake my head in dismay, I really wasn’t surprised by his attitude about this. The Flair name carried a lot of weight in Jersey, all along the eastern seaboard to be honest. I had known this years ago due to my dealing here with another company. That family was revered almost as much as Christ. A minor set back, like MJ’s family, I know people. I stand up and place the document back in my satchel. I offer a handshake which of course is refused.
Jimmy Allen: Very well Mr. Ernst, have it your way.
I turn and leave the office, satchel in hand, on to the next one. Back into the face of the storm I go. It’s where I like it, where I’m most at home. Some panic in the Chaos, I thrive in it.
I think if MJ Flair is honest about it, she knows that I pushed her to her limits. Whether she admits that or not makes no difference to me. As the old social media meme goes….”Honey Badger don’t give a fuck about that.”. The reason it doesn’t matter is the simple fact that I saw it in her eyes after the match was over. I felt the massive sigh of relief throughout the audience when she beat me. That fear that someone like me, might take that title from her and place it in the hands of James Milenko. That didn’t happen this time, it will happen eventually, it’s all just a matter of time.
Should Tobias fail to dispatch her, the hunt is on again chica. What I said earlier is no brag, no boast, it’s not bravado. It’s a fucking fact. Your days are numbered. I don’t care if you respect me or like the way I conduct myself. At least with me, I’m not pretending to be something I’m not. Everything with me you can take at face value, there is nothing that you have to read into. That shit is reserved for people like you and people like Silas Artoria.
The psychopathic aristocrat.
To be part of an aristocracy, first and foremost you have to be of noble birth. Silas there is not a damn thing noble about you.
You fucking clown.
Of all of the people they could put me against. This will likely be the only time that you will be cheered by a Canadian crowd. Has that realization hit you yet? No, probably not, you don’t seem like the forward thinking type. Some of us, not all but some of us have a plan. You? You don’t have a clue. You have no idea who you are getting in the ring with. Silas, I’m a second generation star in this business. I’ve achieved more in my short career to date than you could ever envision. So our match at evolution, it’s a qualifying match for the WCWA U.S. Title.
A qualifier for the U.S. Championship at the WCWA pay per view, “When Worlds Collide.”. One of us will represent, and the other will sit home wondering what happened. That someone would be you Silas, sitting home and trying to figure out why you lost. Why that kid from Texas kicked your fucking teeth down your throat? Why did he hate me so much, why would any civilized human being do something like that. It’s not terribly difficult to figure out.
That’s the easiest part of this match figure out Artoria
You are a disgusting, putrid, piece of shit. The night that you power bombed Tara Robinson through a table. No matter what people think of me, and no I really don’t care. I would never have power bombed Tara through a table. That’s not enough if she can get up from that and continue to do her job! You honestly believe that you have the chops to represent this company when you can’t put an untrained announcer out of work for a while? I understand you not being able to beat Flair, that shit happens and that chick is on a roll. I also failed to deliver on that score. One of the differences between you and I though. She was only my third loss since I’ve been here. Think about that Silas, think about what that means.
I’ll tell you what it means Silas, I just win matches, I don’t care about consequences. Think about the people I’ve pinned, they are some of the same people you’ve never beaten. The people you can’t beat? Yeah, I’ve beaten them, either in singles or tag team matches. That includes your former girlfriend Crow...canary...whatever the hell her name is….oh right Raven. You couldn’t, no matter how hard you tried put her down for good. Dorian, Ataxia, and the list goes on. I actually come from Wrestling Nobility, unlike you I don’t have to make that shit up. Maybe I should make it a stipulation that when I beat you, you’re no longer allowed to use that moniker. There is another very distinctive difference between us Silas.
Your passenger does speak volumes about you, doesn’t it? What it says to me is that you’re weak. You can’t fight your own battles, although you claim that you are in control. You’re not in control Silas, as your passenger has shown too often in the past. It can take over without a moment's hesitation. So, you’re not only weak physically but mentally as well. Why would this company take the risk of you representing them? You’re unstable, not able to control anything inside or outside of the ring.
And that’s just CWF, they’ve never done a damn thing about you. I guess there’s no rules about consorting with Demons, is there? It is my assumption that’s what I’m dealing with. Maybe I’ll talk to Tobias about this, I wonder if he has anything that I can use to put a stop to that shit. I digress, the point is I’ve wrestled all over the world and seen it all. I’ve gone one on one with people who were crazy stupid, stupid, crazy or on PED users. I can’t say that I’ve ever been in the ring with someone who has a passenger riding along and calling the shots.
Passenger or not, it won’t matter in the end whether you turn it loose or not Artoria. You do realize that the only way to beat me is to turn it loose right? There’s no way to fake an injury and get out of this Silas. When the dust settles, the best always rise up. The best always find a way to win. We don’t make excuses, not for injuries, not for someone breaking the rules, not for any reason. I’ll not allow anyone but me represent the ruling class at the WCWA pay per view. At “When Worlds Collide” arrives, it will be represented by The Hostile Takeover.
End of fucking story….
Audio fades to nothing…