He won again. He got the victory, but did it mean anything to him?
That's what was wondering in Silas' head as he patiently waited outside Dr Leggett's temporary office inside the arena, waiting to be called in as the good doctor finished filing an assortment of paperwork; all weekly and some daily reports as required of his job.
She had ruined another crowning moment. He should've ascended into the spotlight to once again claim the main event crown he had a brief dance with.
Instead, the story coming out of the match was that Silas got into the WCWA title match by way of disqualification. It doesn't scream "champion" or "dominant." It screams "weak" to Silas, hence why he shied away from such tactics in recent months. He didn't like being a proxy competitor, getting to his spot via sheer numbers. He wanted his victories to mean something.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Silas?
Silas turned to see Dr Leggett peering through the door, smiling politely at the Canadian.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: You can come in now.
Dr Leggett disappears back into the office, as Silas simply looks up and sighs deeply. He follow them through, closing the door behind him as Dr Leggett approaches the chair behind his desk.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: It's all good news. You've got some standard bruising, especially on your head from that chair shot you got, but there is no sign of any serious injury that'll hamper your performance. Dexterity is still at it's peak, and any pains and aches you have now will subside quite quickly.
Silas quietly sits down, looking off slightly to the side without acknowledging the doctor.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: You've got a long PPV potentially in two weeks, so I advise a good interval of training and rest. Don't want to gas yourself out, don't want you to easily inj--
Dr Harmon suddenly stops as he finally takes notice of Silas' absent and pale look. The optimistic doctor drops the look.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: The match still bothering you?
SILAS ARTORIA: I was once told by my father that if you want a rival business or venture to go bust, it's best not to sabotage them, but to simply draw everyone away from them through legitimate means. Your rival's can't complain, and you get a long term benefit.
Silas looks at Leggett.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: I'll take that as a yes, then?
SILAS ARTORIA: If by 'bothered' you mean 'justifiably furious', then yes. Hollow, the feeling is.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: What's done is done, Silas. Think of the positive--
SILAS ARTORIA: Ah, ah--no no no. There is no positive here, just a giant note pinned to my back saying, "here by technicality." I don't like that. Not one little bit--do you have any drinks here?
Dr Leggett nods negatively.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Just my prescribed mixture.
He leans forward.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: What do you want Silas? Let it all out, between you an me. Won't leave this room. It's my job to make sure you are ok.
SILAS ARTORIA: I know doc. I know. I know.
Silas leans forward and sighs heavily.
SILAS ARTORIA: You've watched me for a long time, right Harmon?
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Since before you arrived here.
SILAS ARTORIA: You know my specific desires here, favorite spots, favorite people to dance around.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: I'm sure Tara Robinson would love to hear that.
SILAS ARTORIA: Well just like that, you know that there are very few things that just put me over the goddamn edge. Can you list a few?
DR HARMON LEGGETT: I'm guessing authority is one of them.
Silas hand waves it.
SILAS ARTORIA: Nah. It thought it was, but that's just me throwing the toys out of my pram during that period.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: You did intimidate the production crew to lowering the cell.
SILAS ARTORIA: But I didn't hurt anyone...well....other than myself and Shadow but that's just part of the job.
SILAS ARTORIA: Reputation...insults...disrespect...
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Autumn?
SILAS ARTORIA: Especially Autumn.
He looks down, scrunches his lips, and continues.
SILAS ARTORIA: It's like whenever I finally get away from the triggers, one of them creeps up and immediately sets the others off, domino effect. And at some point there's always a culmination of episodes. Distancing from Autumn, coming from The Lost Boys and our failures. Attacking Tara, big blow up over having the worst streak in the company. That match in Japan, lots of misconceptions to the point that it was the only way to vent all our frustrations out on each other.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: And yet the sequence continues to happen. Do you think this is all your fault? Do you think any of it is your fault?
SILAS ARTORIA: I'd imagine so. You tick off the wrong person or make the worst choices in life, you have to deal with the consequences. But this!? This association with someone leagues below me is biting my ass because I have the compassion to rescue her from irrelevancy!? And now I am forced to hold her hand again as punishment for having the audacity to defeat one of the competing manager's "chosen boys"?
DR HARMON LEGGETT: I wouldn't approach it with that attitude, personally, but it's something I can at least have a grasp of. It's natural to have a defensive response during an undesirable situation. It's normal. Just let it all out.
Silas took off his hat and flowed his hair through his fingers, trying and failing to massage any stress conjured up from the announcement. It helped, but not enough to equal a single percentile of the weight added to his shoulders. His arms drop down hopelessly, as frustration once again built up within.
SILAS ARTORIA: A few weeks ago, I was on top of the world, reveling in the attention that comes with being in the main event; having championship matches and headline grabbing bouts, the likes of which I've never had before. It's intoxicating, just getting a sniff at it. I had the admiration and respect from the goddamn champion. Not that garbage that comes with fighting an entity where you begrudgingly admit that they have a good punch. No! This was genuine respect to the point that they said that they wanted me back in the ring to face them while I was in the hospital!
And then my psychotic best friend shows up to shadow me to continuously nibble away what I've built during that time, over a mistake--honest mistake I made nearly a year ago; one that got her out of the slump she was in. So please excuse me if I'm not exactly in the right attitude, doc! Because I am once again put into a situation where it feels like the entire world is against me!
Out there I was, taking on Jimmy Allen for an opportunity to fight against whoever at some other company for a WCWA title! I had him in a simple airplane spin when my poor head is nearly split back open! Once again, my generosity catches up to bite me in the ass and could've put me back on the goddamn shelf! Sure, I got the win, but now there is a big asterisk next to my name that says, "by DQ".
That doesn't look good on my resume! And the hard work I've been building up has come crashing down, all because of a goddamn chair! A chair! I'm surprised the CWF hasn't already come to me to ask for a rematch against Allen, to ensure that the result is a clean victory!
He exhales and calms down, with a hint of ire still present in his body language and vocal tone.
SILAS ARTORIA: I guess it's because the match is sanctioned by WCWA. Up to them I guess, if they can be bothered to change the card. I still have a match to prepare for after Northern Crown. It's going to be an uphill battle; carrying Autumn to a serviceable showing and maybe dragging her into the next round. Maybe that'll show her who was carrying the union I founded, then maybe she will realize that clinging onto my shoes is doing no one any favors.
I got a mystery opponent, doc. How do you prepare for that!? Exercise and pray to the lord above that maybe the Danger Boyz show up to once again make a complete ass out of themselves? It's laughable, every time they face us; makes you think if booking them against us is punishment for running over a kitten or something.
He leans forward, looking at Dr Leggett in the eyes while shuffling through his coat.
SILAS ARTORIA: I've got something to prove, doc. I'm not going to leave Autumn behind, only if it's to save face, because I am sick and tired of being put through the meat grinder every time I get a hint of momentum. Do you know how the Autumn association has hurt my future prospects? I took a look at the forums when the full card was finally announced, and I came across a juicy little nugget.
Here, I'll read it.
He fiddles with his phone for a moment, tutting to himself as he scrolls down his internet browser history. Doesn't take long, he found it just moments ago, and it was enough for him to enter the doctor's office peeved.
SILAS ARTORIA: Ahh! Here we are.
He clears his throat.
SILAS ARTORIA: "Prediction. Mystery Team vs. The Harbingers of Death"--me and Autumn--"Mystery Team is a very busy team of late, so I'm going with them."
He looks back at the doctor with an upset look in his eyes, and his face beset from the comments.
SILAS ARTORIA: A goddamn MYSTERY OPPONENT have better odds of winning than the ANNOUNCED TAG TEAM PARTICIPANTS WITHOUT ANYONE KNOWING WHO THEY ARE!!
He slams him phone to the ground, shattering it in a variety of pieces of different shapes and sizes.
SILAS ARTORIA: They mean to tell me that if The Unstoppable Force waltzed back into the promotion, they would have better chances of winning than the people COMPETING FOR THE TOP TITLE FOR THE GOOD PART OF THREE MONTHS!?? That is disgusting! Maybe if it was against The Shadow's lot or Hostile Takeover...yeah, maybe; likely actually! But to assume that giant toddlers would have a better chance of winning is vile. It's an insult of the highest order, and I would happily love to drag that guy by the ear into the ring to show what a pathetic mistake they've assumed. I would love to be able to drag everyone, every team, every stable through the circles of hell, just to make sure they know that I am not to be taken lightly.
He gritted his teeth, and leaned back into the chair, trying to once again relax and calm down.
SILAS ARTORIA: I'm trying, doc. Trying to improve my standing within this company through a competitive spirit and making amends to the people I wronged, but how can I when I am assumed to be dead on arrival when it comes to the big matches? That's why I disobeyed you, to prove a goddamn point! I hate being in this state of limbo, being presumed to be an easy win for whomever is facing me, and I've got to change it.
He curls his lips, then his head bows in near defeat.
SILAS ARTORIA: I'm going to try. Try and plow through this disadvantage with pride, and if it means defeat, so be it. At least I can hold my head I and proclaim that I at least proved to be an athlete not to brush under the carpet.
He grunts to himself, as Dr Leggett keeps his eyes on him, smiling politely.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: You done?
Silas takes a long breath out.
SILAS ARTORIA: Once I am done with this tournament, yeah. I'll be done, with her I mean. Am I cleared?
Dr Harmon's smile widens.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Yes. Same conditions.
Silas says nothing else, and just stands up and makes his way to the exit.
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Please don't do anything stupid to Autumn. You wouldn't want to add more work onto me, would you?
Silas opens the door, looking back at the doctor as he passes through the arch.
SILAS ARTORIA: For you doc, sure. Just for you.
Another deep sigh.
SILAS ARTORIA: I want to be good, doc. But all this mounting against me--
DR HARMON LEGGETT: Then turn it into a positive. Worst thing you can do is let it get to you.
Silas smiles again in response, warmly, before finally leaving. He closes the door and beelines for the exit, weary of those around him. None of the crew members really batted an eye for the man, as they had become use to Silas' odd and sometimes dangerous outbursts. He whispers as he looks at his hand.
SILAS ARTORIA: Not now, not now.
PASSENGER: I'm started to get impatient.
SILAS ARTORIA: I'll find a way, give me time.