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 Moving Forward

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Faulerro

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PostSubject: Moving Forward   Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:05 pm

“Well, to be fair, it isn’t the most British name I’ve heard.”

Nathan has a point. I have Italian and Hispanic blood in me, far more so than you’d expect from a lad of Manchester. I’m England born-and-bred, however. That much is undeniable and no multicultural name can prove otherwise.

“I wouldn’t let it bother you though,” my rotund companion shrugs, “Homer Cyde is an idiot who honestly believes trivial matters such as that mean anything.”

“An extremely skilled idiot,” I point out, taking a sip of the tea he bought for me, “Besides, I’m not really bothered by it. Just thought it was worth noting.”

I’m sat here at an outdoor table of a small cafe in the city I call my home, with another native resident by the name of Nathan Wallace. A gifted businessman with a silver tongue; this portly, middle-aged bloke used to be my manager, back when I was wrestling for the CWA. Today one could find him promoting a small, up-and-coming independent wrestling group from this area.

Despite his appearance – a stubby, roundish body stuffed into a sweaty maroon suit and a hairline that’s not so much receded as it has flat-out retreated off his scalp - he’s an intelligent and well-off man who is smart enough to keep the money coming in, even while staying in the business.

Too bad more former wrestlers couldn’t follow in his wide footsteps.

“I watched their response video, so I’m aware of the approach they’re taking,” Nathan says, using a napkin to wipe away the crumbs from his scone, “Can’t say I’m surprised on either side; it’s what you’d expect from the duo: Reggie shows respect to those who earn it, whilst his brother takes pot-shots as often as polaroids.”

Joxide, who was happy to join me in my homecoming (after I’d promised him one hell of an indie show and good food), decides to chime in, whilst he lies back casually on his chair.

“They’re both bellends,” he sagely informs us, “I haven’t forgotten what they did to me.”

“Neither has the rest of the wrestling world,” Nathan adds, “The video of that powerbomb is still all over YouTube.”

I can see Joxide shuffle and grumble, sitting up to chug the rest of his lager. You wouldn’t think it was still morning from his choice of beverage, but the time of day has never stopped him from doing whatever he wants.

“Never faced Reggie before,” I note, “Seems like an interesting bloke. Very no-nonsense; I like that.”

“You’ve got a bit in common, you two,” Nathan points out, being quite knowledgeable about those in the business, myself in particular, “Both of you have made mistakes you’ve been paying for your whole lives. You’re also the type of men who won’t make excuses. I’m looking forward to seeing you tangle at the show.”

“Feel free to go after Reginald,” smirks Joxide, “Just remember to leave Homey to me. I’ve got a few new tricks in store for that yank.”

“We’ll see how it goes,” I return the smirk, “Remember, you wanted this to be no holds barred. It’s bound to get chaotic in there.”

“I can handle chaotic,” he says with a stretch, and taps a passing waiter on the shoulder, making a drinking gesture and motioning to his now-empty glass.

“Just remember, you two,” Nathan warns us, pointing a chubby finger in our direction, “Underestimating the Cydes is the worst mistake you could make leading up to this match. Not only are they fantastic in that ring, but they’re brothers. Their respective personalities and styles couldn’t be any different, but there’s an intangible bond between blood. That is just one of the trump cards they hold.”

Again, a valid point by Nathan. He’s been making a lot of them since this rendezvous got under way. One cannot fault his keen logic, and it would take remarkable skill to refute his arguments. He may not have been blessed with the greatest physique, but there are few people out there with as sharp a mind or tongue as his. He always had the right strategy to turn even the gravest situation around in his favour, and could present it in the most convincing manner possible. There was a reason they used to call this man “Mr. Miraculous”.

He was a great associate to have at my side during my early career – it was he who discovered me and introduced me to the powers that be at CWA – and is naturally the person I turned to for advice regarding this challenging match ahead of us.

Though in truth, he was the one who called me. It was the first time I’d heard from him in years. I’d not been approached by my old manager for a long time, but the moment I was announced as Joxide’s partner for the CXA Reunion show I was greeted by his voice on the phone. From how he spoke to me, it was like we’d never stopped talking.

“Homer Cyde is a technician, and even in a bout of this kind he’s going to make very good use of that,” he tells us, running down his proposed strategy for the match, “You have to remember, his grapples, suplexes and holds are strong weapons in themselves; he won’t even need to pick up an object to do serious damage.”

“That’s not to say he won’t though,” he points out, jutting a finger upwards to accentuate this, “In fact, I’m positive that if he does get his hands on something, he’ll find a very violent purpose for it. That mind of his is always working; he was trained to stay one step ahead of his foe and use every opportunity that presents itself. I dread to think what unpleasant move he might improvise with a chair in his possession, for example.”

“He won’t get the chance,” Joxide interrupts to say, nodding in thanks to the waiter as he’s handed a fresh drink, “While he’s plotting some sort of complicated new use of a foreign object, I’ll be whacking him right in the spuds with Moppy.”

“God, foreign object,” he muses before anybody can continue, “Hardly sounds PC, does it? Might as well call it an immigrant object. Feckin’ things, always stealing our jobs.” He takes a sip of his lager, not caring about the people staring at him for that stray comment.

“Easy on with that booze, Jox,” I’m quick to remind him, before he starts a riot.

“Just keep it in mind,” Nathan warns, “He can catch you with one of those throws before you even notice he’s there. Add a table into the mix and you’ll end up rather sore. But I probably don’t need to tell you that.” He gives Joxide a knowing look. The man in question simply shrugs and takes another drink.

“How about Reggie?” I ask, legitimately curious, “How do I prepare for him?”

“As much as humanly possible,” Nathan tells me straight, “He’s unpredictable. Years upon years of barroom brawls and generally being a trouble magnet has made him adaptable too. He’s ready for just about any situation, in or outside of the ring. He’s no slouch when it comes to strikes, so I’d recommend combating those with your karate. Get some kicks in when he least expects it.”

“That’s assuming he goes bare-handed in this fight,” he follows up, “I mentioned his adaptability, and having weapons at his disposal will only highlight that. Whatever he wraps his fingers around will be used, and used effectively. Be careful if and when that happens.”

“Got it,” I reply, mulling those words over as I take in some more tea.

“There’s plenty more I could recommend, but something tells me that you’re not just interested in my advice,” Nathan eyes me from underneath those bushy brows, “Namely the reason I’ve only just called on you.”

“Perceptive of you, Nathan,” I tell him. Joxide raises his eyebrows in surprise.

“Really? I didn’t suspect anything.”

“Of course you didn’t,” I confirm, and I shoot Nathan a serious look, “You haven’t been ignored for the past five years.”

Nathan looks considerably less uncomfortable and sheepish than I would have expected. Then again, he did appear prepared for this.

“I haven’t ignored you, Orland,” he begins to explain, “I’ve let you live your life. Gloria told me of your displeasure the last time I tried to interfere, when you were at the TXA for a cup of coffee. I decided it was for the best to give you breathing room. And look at how much you’ve progressed without me.”

“What about when I lost my face?” I interrogate him, my voice not raised nor stained with emotion: I stay calm throughout, “When I asked you to help me after my friends turned on me?”

“That was long before, and you hardly asked me for help as I recall. You hissed and swore at me; you were delirious. I wanted to assist you, but you rejected it. You rejected everyone back then.”

“What did you expect? I was disfigured by my former allies, of a team you were a part of. It wouldn’t have surprised me at the time if you organised it.”

“That’s ridiculous. You know I’d never do that to you.”

“Do I? Do I really know that?”

Joxide seems a bit taken aback by all of this, but doesn’t seem to mind the back-and-forth. He watches intently, like he’s got front row seats for a talk show.

“Orland, I don’t appreciate these accusations,” Nathan tells me, visibly ruffled, “I won’t lay claim to having lived the most righteous existence. I’ve made mistakes. But I would never betray the trust of a friend. You have my word on that.”

“These aren’t accusations,” I reply, my voice still calm, “I just want answers. I want to know the whole story. I’m beyond holding grudges now. I’m at peace with a lot of what happened to me; and with what I have done myself.”

Nathan adjusts himself in his chair, “Very well. Just know that I always had your best interests in mind, whether I were involved in them or not. I did find you to begin with, after all. You’ve always been as much an investment to me as you are a friend.”

I cannot help but laugh a little. Nathan’s brutal honesty. Always respected that. If you really knew this man, he would tell you precisely how things were. To the public, to reporters, to just about anybody else he was happy to gloss over facts and lie through his teeth - and succeed at doing so - but to me and those in his inner circle he only gave the pure, often ugly, truth. If only I’d thought to ask him for this truth before.

“As for why I’ve called you now, it seemed like the right time,” he adds, “I could tell things were different when I watched the streaming video of the press conference. And not just because of your new face,” he points to my reconstructed features, “You looked ready to move forward.”

“I guess you really do know me all too well,” I find myself having to admit.

“So you’ve come to terms with things, have you?” Nathan probes, taking a more relaxed nibble on his scone, “Is that why you’re back in the public eye instead of hiding away in a broom cupboard somewhere?”

“Pretty much. I’ve let old matters die. Not only did I regain my face, I set myself a new goal.”

“Oh yeah? What’s that?”

I smile, “Redemption.”

“Hang on; are we getting onto a discussion of feelings?” Joxide butts in, “’Cause I think I’m running out of alcohol. If you have any concern for my mental wellbeing, please change the subject.” He makes a comical pleading motion with both hands.

Nathan finally lets a smile creep onto his chubby face, “Alright, fine. Are you two going to be able to make it to the show tonight?”

“Certainly,” I nod, “Would be nice to see some British wrestling for a change.”

“The last time I was at a show like that, I jumped into the ring and ended up with a shitload of bruises,” Joxide comments, “I think just being a part of the audience is just what the doctor ordered.”

“I’ve got some talented lads working for my group, “Nathan points out, “Who knows? You might learn something.”

Joxide looks indifferent, “Doubtful, but we’ll see,” he downs the rest of his pint and hoists himself from his chair, “Well then ladies, as it’s been a long time since so large a fragment of the Deadly Alliance have been in one place, how about we celebrate?”

Nathan shakes his head wildly, “Oh, I couldn’t. They need me at the centre to make sure the show’s running smoothly.”

“Besides, I don’t know if you’d noticed, but it’s still morning,” I remind Joxide.

“Yeah, I suppose so,” he sighs in a deflated manner. Poor Joxide. He must be so used to living by his own schedule.

“How about tonight, then?” he tries again hopefully, “After the show’s done? We’ll go on a Mancunian pub crawl!”

“I don’t think my wife would...” Nathan starts, before descending into laughter at the sight of Joxide’s pathetically overdone ‘puppy dog eyes’ routine, “Oh for Christ’s sake, okay! One more night-out for this group of sad bastards living in the past!”

I have no objections. And so as Joxide shows his enthusiasm and Nathan waves at us on his way to the leisure centre holding the show, I can’t help but feel like life is slowly getting better.

“Not bad, eh?” Joxide chuckles, “Never thought I’d get ol’ Nathan Walrus out on the piss, but look at my handiwork! I’m well-chuffed, mate!”

“I wouldn’t say we’re living in the past, though,” I tell him, regarding Nathan’s last comment, joking though it may have been.

“Nah, we’re all carrying on,” he agrees, “Just taking the odd look back at the road that brought us here.”

“Anyway, enough of that bollocks,” he goes on, “You promised me good food. What does Manchester have to offer my fine tastes?”

“There’s a few fancy restaurants around here that I’m sure you’ll like.”

“They got a KFC?”

“Oh, at least ten of them.”

“Siiiiiiiiick.”

And so I joined an excited Joxide at the nearest grease-infested Kentucky Fried Chicken, thinking the whole time of what lies ahead of me.
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Julius Seizure

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PostSubject: Re: Moving Forward   Wed Mar 16, 2011 2:40 am

Wow, you're a brilliant-RP-producing MACHINE! Nice work as usual
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Mjolnir

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PostSubject: Re: Moving Forward   Wed Mar 16, 2011 6:19 am

ooc: Excellent stuff as always. Love the KFC part as well. Its something I always associate with Jordan.

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