Chapter View

Life Support

Keeping the Network Happy

Welcome to SHOWTIME!

Welcome Back

The best laid plans…

Impromptu Main Event!

Too late, the heroes

Match Interruptus


Just... don't.

When you're drunk, every crisis is a PARTY!

I Hear

Unmitigated Disaster

Just... don't.

“So,” said Sammy, as he nudged Buckley with his elbow, “You wanna take this one?”

The arena staff had relocated to the backstage, and while a good number had quietly snuck out the back, most of the senior staff had hung around.

And why not? You could practically make out everything Jim was shouting at Thomas from behind closed doors. The nutcase had been, by intent or omission, making everyone else in the CSWA squirm for years since he seized control of the entire company, it was refreshing to see it come back around.

Except for the person sitting in the middle chair down the hall.

Ivy McGinnis had followed silently behind them after the show was scrapped, and even though Thomas was calm when he asked her to wait outside, there was a look in his eye that made her believe that as soon as Jim was done, she was next.

Even when Buckley sat to her left, and Benson to her right, she didn’t move from her position. She sat there with her glasses dangling in her right hand, while her left cheek, eye, and temple were covered by her left. She shook her head slowly.

“These things happen,” said Buckley, as he patted her on the back.

“Thomas knows you did the best you could,” assured Sammy, as he accidentally patted her burn.

Ivy chuckled.

“These things happen,” she repeated.

“It was all just a lot of bad luck,” continued Buckley, “You couldn’t have planned for any of this.”

“Bad luck,” said Ivy, once again echoing what was just said to her, “Bad luck is a cross blowing up in my face. Bad luck is a gang of flippin’ nutjobs tearing down my arena. Bad luck, Bill, is being locked in a cabin on a ship with people you’ve loved and hated for years.

“Calm do—“

“No, I will not calm down. What happened down there in the arena tonight, I was ready for. We had everything set up, we had everything uplinked and downloaded and whatever else you can think of – we were ready.

“You’re only human, all of us are just individuals.”

“Unacceptable, Sammy. I can’t afford to be ‘only human.’ I have to be better than that.”

“Seriously, this isn’t good for the baby.”

That might’ve been a mistake. Ivy stood up, knocking the back of the chair against the wall with a ‘CLANG’ that made Bill and Sammy, and most of the people who were still trying to hear the argument in the office without making it look like it, flinch in surprise.

“What isn’t good, Sam,” she continued, and he knew he was in for it, “is that this business has gotten so fucked up in the past few years, this company was the single holdover from the ‘boom’ that everyone likes to talk about with such reverence, and we could get there or close enough to it again so easily I can see it, but there’s always one more fork in the road.”

She looked down at Sammy from her four inch heeled boots. “You’re lucky, Sammy… you get to sit out in the arena and be funny. That’s your whole job. Some of us… some of us have a little bit more to worry about.”

Her eyes caught Sammy’s, and they locked their gaze for a few seconds, before Sammy got up and walked away. Ivy watched him for a few seconds, and looked back towards Buckley.

“That was too far, wasn’t it Bill?”

Buckley shrugged. He was not nearly as close to Ivy as Rudy Seitzer, or even Sammy in his own way – he didn’t know what he should say here.

Fortunately, Ivy did.

“Damn. Damn, damn, damn.”