PCW - Conflicted, Chapter 8 - Knives and Bullets Jun 25, 2006 3:26:28 GMT -5
Post by Ris - The Former Lantlas on Jun 25, 2006 3:26:28 GMT -5
Bleeding. Red scarlet drops of liquid dropped to the surface of the earth in the middle of the early morning. The sun was almost ready to rise, and the haze in the air clouded the vision ahead through the numerous trees. Through the clarity and silence of the night, Eldarin could hear the sounds of a raid beginning. Horses being mounted, weapons being distributed, and an angry officer shouting commands.
"Knights! Knights of the Crown! Your brethren lie dead because of this rebel! These creatures have spawned from the depths of Hell below us! What do you say we send them back there?"
A loud cheer of approval is heard from the surrounding knights. Eldarin gasped, as it sounded like many had gathered from surrounding colonies and villages. Even with the skill of Eldarin's warriors, being outnumbered by this much would create a serious problem. That, and they had no idea this raid was coming.
"The fiery depths of hell call their name! I say we do more than invade their little village... I say we burn it to the ground and wipe any evidence of their very existence from the face of this earth!"
More loud cheers arose from the angry mob, and Eldarin turned north for Cathdesalantis.
"To Cathdesalantis... BURN IT TO THE GROUND!"
Eldarin reached around to his lower back, and when he looked at his hand, it was covered in blood. Slightly panicked, he removed his armor and tore his over-shirt in half. While he was tying his clothing around his waist, an arrow flew by his head. Eldarin secured his knot to stop the bleeding, and turned around armor-less with his sword in hand. His face turned white as he dropped his sword and backed up into a tree.
Eldarin was looking at a mirror image of himself, only his eyes were green. The Green-Eyed reflection held the bow in his hand, and he laughed maniacally as Eldarin’s facial expression didn’t change in the slightest.
“What’s the matter,” Green Eyes taunted, “I thought you were the almighty Elven Warrior!”
Eldarin took a deep breath and rose to his feet with the help of his sword. “I suppose I could say the same thing about you,” he remarked.
Green Eyes rolled his eyes and looked away for a second. When he turned back around, he punched Eldarin to the ground and laughed one more time. “It would be an insult to believe that the way you’re acting would reflect upon the name of Eldarin,” he yelled. “A simple invasion with a simple goal; kill all humans in sight. Should’ve been easy, right? Not for the supposed leader of the Elven Warriors, oh no! Look at you! You’re wounded and useless, and the humans are marching off to your village to burn it to the ground! What’s the wounded leader gonna do?”
Eldarin drew his hand away from the side of his face, where now his lip was bleeding as well as his lower back. Rising to his feet once again, Eldarin looked himself in the Green Eyes. “I don’t know if I’m imagining you, or if this is some kind of joke, but either way, you listen here. I am not a failure to my people, and I will not let them die, do you hear me? I will not let them die!”
Green Eyes snorted again as he looked off in the distance. “Well, you better get it in gear, Elfboy. You’re standing here talking to yourself while your people are about to be murdered.”
Eldarin turned quickly and saw how far the infantry had advanced. When he turned back around, he saw nothing. He shook his head, and continued onward, trying to run to get ahead of the Knights. His head began to feel lighter, almost as if someone else were starting to control him. His own eyes flashed green, and suddenly the pain from his wounds was gone.
Devon Drake. With all the things going on, with two matches now involving me at Return to Glory, and with a Genesis rules match on the horizon at this week’s Trauma, for some reason Devon was the only thing on my mind. It shouldn’t have been either; for I knew our relationship had ended a long time ago, and she’d made it abundantly clear that in the past is where that was going to stay. It was probably my fault that it did end, although at one time I would’ve liked to claim otherwise, but the last thing I needed was her Elven alter ego returning to kick the living crap out of me again.
She hadn’t been around much since Kieran had left. It really made me wonder how her internal conflict was going. I knew she’d been struggling with it long before she saw Dr. Virgill about it. Kieran was all but suppressed when we were together, but the sour ending to our relationship sure brought out that dark side pretty damn fast. At the time, I had no idea that her dark side was actually the Kieran I’d known almost my entire life. Maybe things would’ve worked out differently if I’d known all about that.
My memory drifted, thinking about our relationship. Thankfully for the well being of my nerves, not about the bad ending or the horrendous after-effects, but of the first few months we spent together. My HHW career had just started to take off, although I was nowhere near the main event, nor would I be for another two years. We’d met by chance; a fellow wrestler by the name of Logan Vicious was having a get-together, and for some reason had invited me. Being a newcomer at the time, not to mention desperately wanting some time away from my horny brother, I accepted the invitation.
Vicious had a nice place; a small condo in a community well distanced from the city. The party, which I guess was for his birthday, took place in the pavilion in the center of the development. A swimming pool and a wrestling ring were setup nearby, and I could already tell the theme of this party. Some of these guys in the HHW lived their wrestling, and brought it with them everywhere they went. It made me wonder if some of them would ever have a girlfriend.
Not exactly being the social butterfly type, I remained near the corner for a majority of the day. I occasionally conversed with a few of the people I knew, but given my limited time in the area, that didn’t happen too often. Logan and his partner Vince Coldblood were having a pretend match with each other to show off some of their new moves, and I suppose to make a mockery of them in the process. They were the Vow of Destruction; arguably the most dangerous tag team in HHW history, so I let them have their fun and didn’t really intrude too much.
Later that evening, a girl caught my eye. This didn’t happen too often, as my experiences with the other sex were quite limited at this point in time. My upbringing, not to mention being six-seven with long blue hair, didn’t exactly give me the experience every kid had growing up and learning these things. I couldn’t bring myself to talk to her, so learning her name was out of the question. Because of the red streaks in her long, black hair, I dubbed her “Red.” Something about the spring in her step and the smile on her face drew me closer to her. She was spending a majority of her time with Joey Cranston, the President of HHW, and as I would later find out, a childhood friend of Devon. Assuming the two of them were dating, the last thing I wanted to do was get myself fired. Joey had a habit of firing people for reasons such as that.
At one point, the pavilion all but cleared out, and Devon walked in while I was still sitting along the wall. A few seconds passed, and she looked me dead in the eye. “What’s your name?”
She looked towards the entrance for a few seconds, then turned back to me and pulled out her cell phone. “What’s your phone number?”
This took me by complete surprise, and I think it was the first time I’d ever been asked that in a non-professional setting. I quickly gave her the number, and she disappeared before anyone else came into the room. Not sure what to make of the situation, I wondered if she’d just been a fan who recognized me from HHWtv in the last couple weeks. Growing tired, I decided it was about time to leave. I looked in my bag, and there was a small piece of paper protruding from the zipper. I pulled it out, and I found an email address, and a phone number. “Purely Jaded,” I read out loud. “Nice to meet you.”
HHW left Pennsylvania a couple days later for a show in Fort Myers, Florida. The entire plane trip down was usually reserved for planning match tactics and keeping Neovan from getting us thrown out mid-flight by hitting on the stewardesses. This time, Neovan got himself in trouble the entire time. My thoughts were elsewhere, as thoughts of Red kept playing throughout my mind. A new feeling had taken control of my entire body, and as scary as it was, I’d never felt better in my entire life.
On that week’s UNCUT!, we lost a match for the tag team championships against B Styles and Geno when Neovan got himself hit with the Paradox while I was outside the ring. Not that those two weren’t deserving champions, as they’d both been trained by the legendary Danny Zorich, trainer of Al Laiman as well… but my head wasn’t completely in it that night. I was looking forward to the flight home, because thinking about Red had me in a different state of mind, one of a rare comforting feeling … and I wanted more of it.
I paged through my desk files, but I couldn’t seem to find the poem she’d written me when we finally met up a few days after our return to Pennsylvania. I’d written her one as well, and unfortunately I’d never thought of keeping a copy for myself. Never imagined I’d want to look back on it, I suppose.
June 30th, 2003 was the date when we first went out together. We ended up on City Island in Harrisburg. Halfway between the West Shore and the city itself in the Susquehanna River, the small island housed a baseball stadium for a minor league team and other various attractions. That particular night, though, it housed an amazing view of the lit-up city and the Walnut Street Bridge as the sun disappeared over the horizon. A time so intimate that despite our past difficulties, I didn’t believe she’d forgotten it either.
Not a lot of time passed before we were engaged and living together in a small apartment. Although my career suffered for it, I was having the best time of my life with the girl with whom I’d fallen in love. I never believed it would come to an end, but it eventually did a few months down the line, after she’d moved out and things had started to head south. That’s not what was important to me at that moment, however. Just recalling how I felt falling asleep with her at night, and how sharing the most insignificant little nothings meant the world to me. I loved hearing her talk about Chances, the shapeshifter dragon character she’d created for a role-playing game she was into. Sometimes I imagined Neovan meeting her, and Chances wanting to eat that poor sucker alive. Of course, that would’ve meant I’d have to be there too, warning her not to cross that line, no matter how tempting it could be at times.
“Vati!” That cute little voice turned my attention elsewhere. My little girl came into the room and jumped on my lap. I pretended to let out a cry of pain as she tried to make me tap out with a submission maneuver. Then I grabbed her and tickled her till she tapped out herself. I loved her little giggle.
“What’chu thinking about, Vati?” Emerald might’ve been a little girl, but she was certainly intuitive. She somehow always knew when I was deep in thought about something.
“About a friend I used to have,” I replied. I thought the actual story might be a bit boring for the girl, even if she was infatuated with Ace herself.
“Was it a girlfriend,” she taunted in the way only a ten-year-old girl could.
“Actually it was, sweetie.”
“Really? Who was it, Vati? Do I know her?”
“As a matter of fact, you do.” This would blow her mind if she really wanted to know.
“Really Vati? Who, Vati? Who?”
“Aunt Devon and I were together for a very long time a couple years ago,” I explained.
“Aunt Devon and… you?” She almost seemed surprised.
“Something wrong with that?” I inquired.
“Vati and Devon sittin’ in a tree,” she started to sing.
“Don’t even start,” I warned. I knew where this was going, and as much as I loved my little girl, the last thing I needed was torture.
“I sorry, Vati,” she frowned a bit and started to walk off.
“Hey, come here.” I patted my lap, and she came running back into my embrace. She hooked her arms around my head and looked me in the eye. “Aunt Devon and I didn’t work out so well, and it hurts Vati to think about it sometimes.”
“But do me a favor, okay sweetie?”
“Don’t talk about this with Aunt Devon, okay? It’s just between you and Vati.”
“Okay.” She bounced off my lap and gave me a kiss on the cheek. “I love you, Vati.”
“Love you too, Emerald.”
As she skipped off into her own little world once again, I realized Devon was having the same affect she had on me the first time we met… I’d almost forgotten I had a match this week at Trauma. It couldn’t have gotten any more random either. PCW had generated their Genesis division a few weeks ago, and Justin “Stormm” Michaels was one of their highlights. For some reason, it must have been a raffle to whom Stormm would be facing in a Genesis rules match, and I was the lucky winner.
Al Laiman and Non Compos Mentis would headline this event with their Hardcore Hell showdown. Laiman needed to come through with that victory, because of all people, Laiman ended up my tag team partner in the Tag Team Turmoil last week, and to almost no one’s surprise, we got to the finals that will take place at Return to Glory. Our opponents? Ace Anderson and Non Compos Mentis. So not only would I have to face Ace Anderson in the world title rematch, I’d have to face him to determine the new PCW tag team champions as well, and I was sure Ace was happier than hell over his choice of random tag team partner.
Return to Glory would indeed be interesting, but first I needed to get through this week. My streak had returned, and I hadn’t lost a match, legitimately or not, in at least six matches. In those six, I’d managed to defeat three different champions, and win one of those titles. I’d take those six wins over the first fourteen any day of the week. The two wins in the Tag Team Turmoil earned me my twentieth victory, and even while sitting at 20-2, I still couldn’t seem to prove enough to most of the roster. I wondered if Justin would be like NCM and the rest of the doubting roster who’d been adding their two cents since the minute I won the belt. A lot of them still believed that it wasn’t me winning; it was that Ace was slipping. A win under Genesis rules would complete a sweep of the divisions, and I was sure things wouldn’t change in the minds of the roster masses.
Stormm didn’t seem like that though. Despite the victory Laiman and I had over he and Douglas last week in the Turmoil, I couldn’t quite draw an analysis of his talent. He’d hung in the ring with Ace and the Prophet some time ago, and for that he had my respect. I wondered if he’d come out blaming Douglas for the loss in that match, and that would be perfectly feasible, considering I’d owned Douglas every time I’d faced him. However, I doubt Stormm would bother to look back at the records to draw that conclusion. Stormm’s mindset would probably be focused on one thing… Much like Grimm and Non Compos Mentis in the previous weeks, no doubt… Getting a victory over the world champion in order to further advance his own career. Silly little pipe dreams, as it would be for Stormm, no matter how high my respect would be for him.
Genesis rules were pretty much irrelevant to me. No set of boundaries ever prevented me from doing what I needed to do, and this would be no exception. Stormm, NCM, Ace Anderson, and Ace Anderson again, and all the while getting to team with the legend Al Laiman. One word that could never describe the PCW in my case would be “boring”, as they certainly could always find interesting things to throw my way. However, even within the bounds of this rabid excitement, my thoughts again began to drift back to Devon Drake. I wondered where she was, what she was doing…
Wondering if by some weird twist of fate, maybe she was thinking the same things I was. I knew it was unlikely. She’d probably moved on with her life a long time ago without me even knowing. Although she’d not reacted negatively the last time I flirted with her, that was just in her nature. I’d managed to move on from Terry eventually, and I assumed it would take the same effort to do the same here.
Sometimes though, I just wished I didn’t have to see her everyday. Reminders could be a bitch. A painful one.