Chapter View

What Has Gone Before

Pregame Warmup

Welcome to PRIMETIME!


Lawrence Stanley vs. Troy Douglas


Hornet vs. Nova

Zeroing In

Brotherly Love

Champion's Challenge Tag Match


Kevin Watson vs. S.A.T.

Good Cop?

Dan Ryan vs. Eron

Brotherly Love

Kevin Watson prowls in solitude down the coliseum's corridors, fluorescent beams of light twitching across his path, the mosaic of excited cheers trumpeting far off into some unknown distance as some foghorn letting Watson know just where he doesn't want to be. Draped across his left shoulder is a run-of-the-mill duffel bag with no distinguishing endorsement other than a few scratches and smudges acquired from years of unkempt care, the outer pocket threading its lips in some incestual fashion, a small tear down the front reflects a little bit of gold; draped across his right shoulder is the wall.

Booming echoes of pre-game hyping resonate throughout the hollow hallways but Watson doesn't seem to pay them any notice, and, in fact, the expression on his face might have been one that most of us would wear to the funeral of a friend of a co-worker's; a succinct awareness of the sacredness of one's situation, but absent of any true emotional emphasis on any significance. Kevin's legs lackadaisically drag after each other, but somehow this procession has the feeling of importance; as though if the hallway was full of people they would split like the red sea to allow his journey to go uninterrupted.

If Watson heard the faint piano gently carrying Chopin's "funeral march" through the air his face never acknowledged it, and he doesn't seem particularly concerned with any origin at all as he presses open the somewhat ajar door to his dressing room. Sitting in an invitingly comfortable leather chair that looks ridiculously out of place amongst the generic issued furniture occupying the rest of the room is Nemesis with a glass of red wine in his right hand. He wears a rather expensive looking leather trench coat, as well as an intricately bordered white button-up shirt; his shoes look Italian. Nemesis' eyes are closed and he seems to be caressing the music with his free hand, giving the impression that he would look better suited at some Italian opera with the exception of some very noticeable scar tissue across his face. Kevin doesn't seem to notice him as he tosses his duffel bag over his shoulder and onto one of the more modest pieces of furniture, a standard wooden bench, and only seems to acknowledge any alien presence by walking over to the radio and sharply turning it off.

Kevin: Well if it isn't…

Nemesis: Nemesis: a righteous infliction of retribution manifested by an appropriate agent. Personified, in this case, as a horrible c***.

Kevin: Yeah … I saw Snatch too.

Nemesis has a bit too hearty of a laugh as he swirls the glass of wine in his hand before bringing it to his lips. Kevin merely eyes him briefly as he opens his duffel bag, removing several rolls of tape from in and around the crevasses between the bag's edges, a few folds of clothes, and the centerpiece of the Greensboro Championship title belt.

Nemesis: True enough, but I just get amusement out of life imitating art; or is it the other way around?

Watson, completely uninterested in the entire scenario, merely grunts a reply and begins wrapping his knuckles in the medical tape while still standing. Nemesis observes curiously with an eyebrow slightly raised questioningly.

Nemesis: Do you want to know why I'm here?

Kevin: …don't care.

Watson tersely retorts without looking up from his task.

Nemesis: Right you are, and I imagine you're interested anyway; you can pretend not to care all you like. Would you like a glass of Chianti?

Watson looks up briefly to see a bottle of Chianti, uncorked and sitting on a dilapidated table next to the classily upholstered chair. The table looks as though at least one of the legs was ready to break off if the air conditioning turned on. Given the surroundings the wine, Nemesis, and the chair were in the scene almost seemed as though someone had placed a diamond necklace on some corpse ravaged by war and weather. Watson finishes one last lap around his left wrist, tosses the roll of tape on top of his bag, and grabs the bottle off of the table, ignoring the empty glass, and takes a few swigs straight from the bottle.

Kevin: So where'd you pick up such classy tastes? The crackhouse or the madhouse?

Nemesis(chuckling): I ran into some people in the last few years who felt that life was a work of art, and that each moment should be used to create a masterpiece.

Kevin (wiping some wine from his grizzled face): So, people who don't know what starving means, huh?

Nemesis: They had very different ideas, from you and I, about what suffering is.

Kevin: You mean no idea.

Nemesis: More or less.

Nemesis motions to Watson for the bottle and he tosses it with about as much care as you'd expect from tossing a can of the cheapest beer.
Nemesis snatches the Chianti from the air, cradling the momentum with his arm movement and fluidly tilting the neck to fill his glass.
Nemesis brings the glass to his lips, breathing deep the aromas, and drinking in the wine. Handing the bottle back to Watson, Nemesis shifts his weight in his chair, leaning slightly to his left.

Nemesis: You've given a lot of blood to your life; most of your days are filled with it. I've personally seen your blood spilled on the ground of almost every hemisphere this Earth has to offer: barbs burying into your muscles in Japan, glass gripping to your scalp in Mexico, fire encasing your muscles in Canada, and many scars earned throughout these United States. Through the miracle of satellite TV, your blood has stained the retinas of millions of psyches world-wide.

Kevin: What's your point?

Watson takes an enormous gulp from the bottle and sets it down on the table. He grabs the roll of tape from his bag and apathetically plops next to his bag and begins wrapping his right hand.

Nemesis: You have heart. But you pass it off as a lack of concern for your body. These friends of mine that introduced me to such ostentatious opinions didn't have heart; they had imagination. That's one of the reason they enjoyed me. They had always had the means to create artwork out of life, but before I came around their sculptures were hollow, and the dust gathered around their canvases too quickly; always a new piece.

Kevin: So, what? You're coming out? You're leaving to go work at an art museum? What? You could have ****ed off without coming to tell me about it.

Nemesis laughs to himself, and draws more wine from his glass, thinking about how to make his point.

Nemesis: Years ago, before I disappeared, we often grouped together in our fighting; forming an alliance and giving birth to chaos at every opportunity. Gold, riches, championships, and other's envy were constantly our prize; infamy quickly becoming not just our identity, but a part of our personality; a state of being. Cameras weren't requested, but they had to be there because we were the ones creating what was newsworthy, and the whirlwind of passionate living were our days. Now I find you purposely ignoring almost everything around you, even hiding your championship belt with your gym socks.

Kevin: This path suits me just fine. You were always the one bedazzling the world with your wit, remember? I'm more than satisfied with fighting for blood, and I don't need you to tell me what to do with my ****ing belt.

Nemesis: I've known a few spies in my day, and do you know what they say?

Kevin, though not missing a beat in his tape wrapping, craned his neck slightly to look at Nemesis sitting in an inquisitive fashion.

Nemesis: They say you have to put a tremendous amount of effort into being nobody. It's almost harder work than the actual espionage, to study and become so unremarkable that no one could think of a distinguishing characteristic to separate you from the pack. Blending in, surprisingly, is next to impossible if you want to acquire something out of this life. You're not a spy are you?

Kevin: **** off.

Nemesis (slightly chuckling): Then why go through so much work to appear as if you aren't there? I'm not a fan of the me-better-then-you diarrhea of the mouth that infects most people in our profession, but, come on, your lawyer has the brains of a public defender; and the horrible taste in suits and cologne of one too.

Watson actually chuckles a little to himself as he holds his right hand up to his face and squeezes his fist a few times to test the tape.

Kevin: So, what? Are you here to offer me a personality or something? You're pretty boring for a crazy man, you know that?

Nemesis: We're brothers, and I forget that sometimes. Throughout my various concussions and psychotic episodes I have to be told, sometimes, that I held the US Championship in this league…

Kevin: Twice, moron.

Nemesis: Really?

Nemesis blinks a few times in a more previously common found expression of confusion, but then shakes it off and tries to continue his train of thought.

Nemesis: The point is I once was lost…

Kevin: And now are found? Don't ****in' sing me Amazing Grace you schizophrenic bitch. I've got **** to do … if you haven't heard.

Watson spits with about as little emotion can be possibly executed while spitting a phrase, as he takes the Greensboro Championship belt out of his bag and tosses it over his shoulder. He doesn't even glance in Nemesis' direction as he heads out of the door and onto his title match.

Nemesis: Your anger fuels you well, but unless you know where the keyhole is, you're just rattling your cage.

Kevin: …go **** yourself.