After Northern Crown has ended
The smell of pyro is still strong in the arena as I walk slowly down the ramp, the arena crew is still sweeping up the garbage left behind by fans and wrestlers alike. The ring has long since been taken down but I stand where it was just a few hours ago. The metal folding chair that I had carried with me is now open. I sit in that chair with one of the two tag team belts draped over my shoulder. I begin to adjust it but then take it down and rest it across my lap with the plate plainly visible.
“When I said it didn’t matter who stood across from us in the ring. I was mocked, and ridiculed by many but at the end of the night. Yes, at the end of the night, who is it that gets the last laugh so to speak? The punchline is….we hold the majority of the titles that matter around here. Pretty funny isn’t it? The thing is, the so-called heroes around here, they don’t think it’s quite so funny right now do they?! No, as they travel home or go hang out at whatever bar to drown their sorrows. We toast them for a valiant effort, we toast them for having the temerity to think they could rise above their station in life. We toast them for thinking once again that they were good enough and falling well short of that once again.”
I flash that well known toothy smile, but the smile is as fake as when my father uses it. Inside the words kept rebounding in my head. Trent Steel had told me I had to apologize to Dorian for the things I had done. My father; the legend Mac Bane, told me I had messed up and needed to make it right. For all my smiling and grandstanding, the victories of this team….it simply felt hollow to me. It all just felt wrong, especially the way that Loki had captured the CWF belt. I’m not okay with that level of evil, sure I cheat to get what I want, but that….that was ugly beyond anything I’ve even seen in this business. I don’t dare vocalize that right now though, the things I had to do could not be revealed to the audience at home or to my so-called teammates. So I continue with the fake gloating.
“So, now, you finally have the hero's you all deserve. Now, you will fully understand exactly what we are capable of. We take no prisoners as you all witnessed during this tournament. As you watched on in horror as Loki took the thing from Flair and the fans that mattered most. She took your hope and ground it up under the heel of her boot. Here, let me shed a single crocodile tear for you all. We told you what was going to happen, yet you mocked us. We delivered on those promises and we did so without hesitation or remorse. You’ll find no feelings of guilt or remorse among us. The only thing you’ll find is...champions.”
I stand up, leaving the chair behind I begin walking up the ramp. My phone buzzing in my pocket stops me and I dig it out. A text message from Jon Stewart, “Congratulations, you face Trent and your father on the next evolution. Good luck….you’ll need it….ahahahahahahaha”.
“Fucking perfect, I really do need to do something about that clown.”
I continue to walk up the ramp, championship belt over my shoulder as the scene fades.
The Next Day
The sun was high in the sky as noon approached, the day felt warm in spite of the breeze. I had the old man’s leather jacket with the “AoV” patch that covered the back as I strode towards the complex. The Monaco Apartments near uptown in Dallas had a reputation for being very high end and that’s exactly what I’d been looking for. I no longer had time for home ownership, and so the apartment made the most sense. The attendant met me at the door to the office where I would sign my lease.
Attendant: Mr. Allen, so good to see you again sir.
I smiled and shook his hand sliding him a twenty dollar bill.
Jimmy Allen: Thank you Joshua, is Miss Ingraham in her office?
Joshua slides the twenty quickly into his pocket and shows me the way to her office. Showing me the way really wasn’t necessary but he liked being tipped so he kept up the facade. Her door was open but I politely tap on it to get her attention. She looks up from her laptop and slides the glasses she wears up higher on her face. Monica Ingraham and I go back a ways, we went to high school together. She’s also my sister in law ironically enough. She beamed a smile at me and comes from around the desk and we embrace briefly.
Monica Ingraham: As I live and breath….James Allen Walker!
I smile at her and we each take a seat opposite each other, with her going back behind the desk and me occupying the guest chair in front of her desk.
Jimmy Allen: How’s my little brother doing?
She smirks at the thought of anyone calling Erick “little”, now twenty two years old, Erick is nearly seven feet tall and pushing three hundred and eighty pounds.
Monica Ingraham: Same as always, bad tempered and eating us out of house and home.
We both laugh, growing up it was hard to out eat him that’s for damn sure. Hell of an athlete, I just never could convince him to go into wrestling like Dad and I did.
Jimmy Allen: Still pursuing the body building thing?
She nods with a slight frown that mars her beautiful face ever so slightly.
Jimmy Allen: What’s wrong?
Monica Ingraham: He’s done something….unexpected.
I cringe, when he does something unexpected it’s usually bad.
Monica Ingraham: I should probably let him tell you but he’s not available at the moment. He’s in Japan. He’s at the dojo that you studied at.
My jaw, it literally falls….I’m shocked when I look down expecting it to be bouncing on her desk. I hear her giggle and I close my mouth.
Jimmy Allen: Wait..what?! Erick is in wrestling school?
She beams me another smile but holds up her hand forestalling more conversation from me.
Monica Ingraham: Not a word to your father, it’s a christmas surprise.
Speaking of surprises; imagine mine when I discovered the old man was under contract in CWF. Imagine my surprise when I found out he was teaming with Trent Steel. The same man that thinks I had something to do with the disappearance of his son. Then to compound things, either Milenko or Stewart arranged a tag team match so I can face my father. It’s a non title match, so no big deal right? Wrong, this is a bigger deal than those looking in from the outside can possibly imagine. Why my father would even consider an association with anyone even loosely connected to Stewart is beyond my imagination. He knows all too well the kind of problems Stewart can create.
Correction, will create. Unlike your current Ataxia who’s floating around the rafters it would seem. Stewart, when he puts on the mask as my old man well knows can burn a company to the ground. He’s done it many times, no matter what he claims, he’s not here for the sake of Taxi. He’s here for himself, and I’m going to stop him no matter what it takes. No matter who gets caught in the crossfire, I’m going to end Jon Stewart once and for fucking all!
As far as Trent Steel and Mac Bane, this is a young man’s game gentlemen and neither of you qualify. I get it though, you old men have a legacy to think of, you’ve both been champions. You’ve both been tag team champions as well as world champions. We have our work cut out for us, just not as much as you two do. Where you’ve teamed together for two matches, we have many under our belt. There’s a reason that we swept through the tournament. We have each others backs, can you say the same about each other?
I watched your matches, you barely escaped Bloodsport Incorporated and lost in the second round. Us? We dominated every match we were in. We epitomize what tag team wrestling is all about. We know what it takes, and we deliver, every single time we wrestle as a team. It’s never a matter of if we will win, it’s just a matter of when. Take a look at our matches, you never know when the end is coming for the opposing team, you just know it’s coming. We take no one lightly and we communicate better than any other team in the company. My partner is the uncrowned CWF champion, he is legit the best technician in this company bar none. He is a wrestler, he’s not some roided up brawler that doesn’t know a wrist lock from a wrist watch.
Individually we’re amazing, but as a team?
We’re Fucking Hostile.