Author Topic: The Rogues vs. Paragon  (Read 130 times)

Online Boss Joe

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The Rogues vs. Paragon
« on: February 07, 2018, 02:29:41 PM »
Standard Match!
Carnage Wrestling Tag Team Titles

1 RP Limit
4000 Word Limit

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Deadline: Saturday, February 17, 2018 at 11:59pm Eastern

Good Luck!

Offline Dustin i.e. Jack Michaels

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An opening of the Heart...
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2018, 02:23:59 AM »
 

-----
January 21st, 2018
Las Vegas, Nevada
Mean Machine School of Wrestling
10:28 PM
-----



It was late.

-----

For reasons unknown as of yet, Amber Ryan found herself wandering the empty parking lot of the world renown Mean Machine School of Wrestling several hours after the end of Act of Defiance. She walked from her motorcycle methodically and directly, her helmet underneath the arm of her leather jacket and her eyes swollen and confused. Why had he come here?

-----

It was quiet.

-----

Amber’s head was a mess, a large and angry purple lump square in the middle of her forehead was causing her eyes to swell shut. She should of gone to be checked for a concussion but when Jack left... Something seemed very wrong. To be blunt, they had lost and Amber knew it was her fault. Jack just looked at her after they attacked the Rogues and let his eyes drop. He was broken, he was hurt and Amber knew she had caused it.


-----

It was dark.


-----


He sunk through the crowd after their eyes met with a path erratic and confused. The blood on his brow had been ripped through the skin; droplets staining his broad chest and torso. She’d never seen him that way and she knew she had to find him. Tell him that she knew this day would come. That she would let him fall like she had so many others before him.  She had to... Apologize.

-----

The door was open.

-----

She had gone to Jack’s daughter Amber to see if he had checked in with her after the match. Like a good father, he had. He told her that he loved her and that he was going to be at his school for awhile. There was no class this night, no indy show on the card. The arena like school was totally lifeless save for the bloody key pad next to the glass door that flashed on and off. She walked through the door and saw a path of small blood drops that led down the immense hallway towards the heart of the building. Amber found herself in mild awe as pictures, trophies, titles and more filled the halls from near 20 years of MMSW allumni. Banners of Jack Michaels, Jon North, Eli Goode, David Daniels, Derek Daniels, Dutch Clark, Angela Fortin, James Ceno, Alessandro Quagliaterre and more hung from the ceiling as it led way to the main portion of the school. There, the 1300 seat arena had been set up in spectator mode as Amber followed the blood trail towards the ring. On the ground lay Jack’s Paragon jersey as well as bloodied wrist tape. She picked up the jersey and noticed that a small pool of blood had formed on the ground by her feet.

-----

He stood right here. He stood here and just... Bled.

-----

A noise from behind startled her as she saw a light coming from a row of offices. Dropping her helmet and the jersey, Amber walked towards the light and sound carefully. As she walked into the office, she recognized her partner sitting on a desk and watching a large TV on the wall. He was shirtless and alone; an open first aid kit next to him. Amber saw the patch job Jack had done for himself and saw the shine off his cheek where a tear fell from his eye. She turned her gaze to the TV and watched a video dedication to Jack in quiet wonder.



  As the video came to a close, Amber’s heart sunk as Jack just dropped his head. He buried his face into his hands as she tried to find words, any words, for her partner. She took a shuffling step forward as Jack brought up his head slowly. He shifted to look at Amber with bloodshot eyes and etched emotional turmoil. She could read it all on his face...

Anger. Sadness. Disgust.

And the worst of all...

Disappointment.

She tried to find words, any words, to tell him how sorry she was. How she wanted to take it back. How she wanted to push harder. Do better. How she knew she was not the person he thought she was from day one. That she wished she could be the wrestler, the fighter and the human he thought she could be. For the first time in a long time... She felt an emotional urge that went beyond her own self-destructive tendency.

But the words never came.

Instead Jack turned his head back to the TV which was frozen on a shot of him 20 years earlier holding a title belt to his myriad of fans. Jack took a deep breath and broke the silence.


  I was 30 years old when I won my first wrestling world title... But I had only been active in the sport for a few months at that point. I mean I was no neophyte to combat fighting. I started boxing at 14, taking underground MMA matches in my early 20s but pro wrestling.... It was my dream come true.

Jack got up from the desk and walked towards the TV. He put a hand on it slowly as he seemed to be slipping back in time. His eyes shut tight as another tear came down his cheek.

  I could feel them... Every person that night. They chanted my name, Amber. They cheered and cried...  Made me feel like that for one moment I had made a difference in this god damn world... And I knew then and there that I was destined to do something more than be another face in the crowd...

The tears began to flow faster as Jack let his head drop further.

  It was always there for me. Even in my darkest hours, I had wrestling to fall back to. From training the next generation to promoting the next event to fighting the next fight... I kept giving everything I was. And honestly... It gave me so much back. Money, power, fame... But most important was that it gave me my family too.  In 1998... I met my wife. In 1999... I had my daughter. I...

Jack swallows as a small smile came across his lips.

  I had my whole life changed by her. New years eve baby... 5 pounds, 11 ounces. Holding her in my arms was the only thing in my life more amazing than winning gold. I knew also that there was no quit left in me. I was going to push even harder than I ever had before to give her the best life I could. I would be the greatest in the world for her.

Jack turned back to Amber as he spoke a little deeper.

  I never stopped. Do you realize that? I never stopped being who I had to be. The fans wanted me. The pride consumed me. The life... God... Even when my wife became an alcoholic and blamed me for the world... I kept pushing forward. No pain... No stopping... No time to be Jack Michaels the father. Jack Michaels the husband. Jack Michaels the man... Only Jack Michaels the wrestler.

Amber watched Jack as he turned off the TV and looked past her into the interior of his school.

  I gave them my heart... I gave them my soul... I gave them everything I was and in return... They gave me a purpose.

Jack swallowed hard as his breathing became slightly shallow.

  I tried to guide it the best I could. I had to hide my pain... My shame. I got divorced from Valerie in 2005. I got to watch my daughter drift from me as she had to be a fucking caretaker for her Mom. Booze and pills paid for with my fortune. It wasn’t until she slit her wrists that my daughter got her own life and I got my daughter back. But even through all of that... Wrestling was there for me.

Jack chuckled humorlessly to himself as he exhaled lightly.

  I kept telling myself just one more year. One more run. One more time I would fight to stay at the top. If I couldn’t make my own life work... I would do everything I could to keep wrestling the way it should be.

Jack turned back to look at Amber who was transfixed on the older man. She knew she had to say something to him. Anything at all. Just tell him that she knows it’s her fault but...

  You can understand that right? I mean... What else was I supposed to do? How could I just sit back and let the whole thing fall apart? The lack of pride... The lack of respect... The lack of hope. I had to watch it all and god damn it... I kept coming. From my 30s into my 40s and then my 50s. I did everything I could but it just wasn’t enough. I watched the one thing that kept me sane just degrade into some sort of disgusting mess. I had to stop it Amber... 

Jack let his gaze fall away as he shook his head.

  But maybe there is no stopping it. Maybe I am just a foolish old man who needs to stop dreaming of what could be and accept what is.

  Jack... 

  Tonight was a wake up call for me Amber... We went out there with my entire town pushing for us to do what we do best. Instead... We got destroyed and weren’t even involved with the finish of the match.

  I know you are upset but...

  No Amber, I have to tell you this. I was wrong. I was wrong about this whole fucking mess and I just want to say...

  (Together) I’m sorry.

The two partners stare at each other for a second in confusion as Amber is the one who breaks the silence.

  Wait... Why are you sorry?

  It was my fault, Amber. I dropped the ball for our team and let Las Vegas, pro wrestling, Paragon, Carnage and... Most importantly... You down. You are the future of what’s left out there. You deserve so much more than a stupid old man preaching about the past and some senile hope for the future. 

Amber is speechless as Jack turns his head back out towards the school.

  I spent my life looking for something better and maybe the past wasn’t all that great.  Maybe I do look at my history with rose tinted glasses. Maybe I do ignore what was bad and focus on what was good. Maybe... I need to stop dragging you down and go back home.

Time passed slow as Amber tried to digest what she was hearing. After what felt like eons to her, Jack sighed deeply and let his head drop down again.

  Amber... Why are you still here?

Amber stood frozen as the question hung in the air. Why was she here with Jack? Why was she fighting for what he believed in? There was no easy answer for her. For the first time in a long time, she felt a wave of emotion overtake her that she was both unfamiliar and uncomfortable with. Maybe she didn’t believe the world could be made better. Maybe she didn’t believe she was a good person. Maybe she didn’t believe she had anything to offer anyone but disappointment and frustration. Maybe there wasn’t much she believed in at all... But there was one thing she did believe in. She believed it and, at the same time, she couldn’t understand why he did.

  Why do you still believe in me?

Jack turned around and looked at Amber deeply. There were no need to answer either question because words were inadequate to handle the depth of what needed to be said. Instead, Amber walked forward and stood next to Jack. She looked out into his school and shook her head with a wave of her hand.

  Look at what you built... Look at what you have done. You burned a legacy out there and this town... This sport... Loves you for it. The whole world may not know it, but there is something truly fucking amazing about who you are.

Jack turned to look at Amber as a small grin came on her face.

  I don’t know if I ever told you this but I used to watch you as a kid. My Dad... He had this love for wrestling and he showed me what to look for in your heroes. The guys that could make a difference and fought for something so much bigger than what they were. You stood in that ring with a fire that just never gave up. Even when things went wrong...

The smile faded from Amber’s lips as memories came into her mind.

  No matter kind of shit the world threw at me, I knew there was still a constant out there. Guys like you showed me, and a lot of other people, what it meant to stand up for what you believed in. Yeah... I may not share your faith in people at large. I may not think that this business will ever be better than what it is. I may not think we can change the world... But I like knowing that someone out there does.

Amber slowly turned and stared up into Jack’s eyes.

  There aren’t many guys like you left, Jack. In fact, there is probably only one guy left like you. He is the guy who still kills himself in the gym even when people tell him it’s not worth it. The guy who loves his daughter enough to beat someone to death for her. The guy who will stand by the side of a friend no matter how big of a fuck up they are. The guy who I am proud to call my partner and will do anything for out in that ring.

Amber slowly puts her finger into Jack’s chest.

  That guy is “The Blast” Jack FUCKING Michaels.

Jack starts to tear up again as Amber leans into his chest and Jack put his arm around her.

  Thank you baby girl... Just... Thank you.

  For what?

  For just being... You.

----------------------------------------



-----
February 10th, 2018
Las Vegas, Nevada
Mean Machine School of Wrestling
1:28 PM
CW Web Exclusive
-----


As this Carnage Wrestling exclusive goes live, we find ourselves back in the Mean Machine School of Wrestling. It is midday and our angle is that of the top of the bleachers. We notice that groups of potential wrestlers and trainers work throughout the gym but are far away from the ring in the middle of the arena. Instead, a lone figure stands with his back to the camera and leans over the ropes. Sweat bleeds through his grey t-shirt and as we zoom slowly towards him; his calf muscles taut in his shorts. He looks around at the movement in the school before he speaks aloud.


  It’s beautiful isn’t it? Young men and women here because they want to have a shot at being the best. Pushing themselves beyond what they ever thought possible with the hope of one day... 

The man turns around to reveal himself as Jack Michaels.

  ... to be me?

Jack smirks as he seems to question that sentence out loud. He shakes his head and shrugs.

  Who am I exactly? What do you see? 20 years ago... 15 years ago... Hell, even 10 years ago... I’ll tell you what you saw. You saw a man without fear. You saw a man who could stand toe to toe with anybody in the world and not back down. Giants, Luchadores, Boxers, Brawlers, Hardcore Monsters... It just didn’t matter. That man pushed and clawed and fought and bled to stand at the top of the mountain and scream that he was the greatest EVER. Name the place... I owned it. World champion in Ultimate Championship Wrestling. World champion in Real Athlete Wrestling. World champion in the Pro Wrestling Federation... World champion in Whole F’ing Show Wrestling, Classic Championship Wrestling, High Stakes Wrestling, Extreme Wrestling Entertainment.... Every hill, every obstacle, every record... 'I’ beat it.

The smirk fades from Jack’s face as he narrows his gaze. 

  Year after year... Decade after decade... I pushed the bar higher and sat on my throne of broken bones and shattered dreams KNOWING that I was top of our industry. I kept moving faster and faster until I found myself in Carnage Wrestling with the dream that I could keep doing it. I wanted to prove that I wasn’t too old. I wanted to prove that this war horse still had something to give. I wanted to be... Who I used to be.

Jack looks down for a second as he measures his words carefully.

  But things have changed. My bones didn’t want to work the way they used to. My muscles started to soften and become harder to maintain. There was a little more snow on the roof top and a little less fire in the furnace. To be blunt... Father Time had caught up to me and I started to look past what I was facing out here.

Jack looks back up with a fire in his eyes.

  But not anymore.

Jack walks around the ring as an almost manic tone seems to come over his voice.

  I figured I was in Vegas. My hometown. Guys like JC and Trent couldn’t touch the great Jack Michaels. I figured they thought I was too old and too out of touch to do any damage. They would underestimate me and I would run all over them like a freight train.

Jack looks back up into the camera and raises a finger. He points to himself roughly.

  The great Jack Michaels was wrong about that. The Rogues knew who I was and they made the smart decision to avoid Amber and I like cowards. You hear me? COWARDS!

Jack’s voice shakes the ring as we pan around to see the trainers and students stop to stare at him.
 
  Don’t sit back and think for one god damn moment I don’t see what you did. You kept us out of the match because there was fear. There was animosity. You knew you had the former Carnage World champion and one of the biggest legends in wrestling waiting to kick your god damn teeth out and you ran like dogs. JC ties up with Crucifix and runs away to blow up a building. Steel fights like a little bitch with his beer bottles and dick kick city... Meanwhile Amber and I fight like the champions we rightfully are and get screwed like a pair of horny teens on prom night. But wait a sec... Do you think they would have the balls to right their wrong and offer us a shot at the belts like TRUE fighting champions would? No... Their balls roll up like rotted corn turds and then they run away. Way to hold up that Carnage legacy Rogues... You miserable pieces of shit.

Jack spits in disgust before continuing on.

  Do you really think I enjoy having to do this still? Having to call you cocksuckers out because I get a kick out of leading a charge that few can understand? Do you think I like having to stand up for what I believe in because guys like you are such miserable cunts? I mean... Is this supposed to be fun for me? Is this supposed to be how the twilight of my career should go? Is it fun when I get to go to the doctor to get cortisone shots in my knees and back? How about when I have to tell my daughter I have to miss her graduation because I am half-way across the country fighting to keep this dream alive? Maybe the fun is when I get spat on by the Legion because I made something of this sport and they are too god damn dumb to see the gift I am giving them. So much fun... Let the fucking party begin! 

Jack stops pacing around the ring and looks back over his school.

  There is a hunger here that you bastards can’t or won’t understand... And it’s the same hunger that pushes me to do what I do. I also want to clarify something for you... This isn’t sour grapes boys. If I wanted to, screw it, I pack up my bags and head back home. I say to hell with pro wrestling and to hell with every single guy like JC and Trent Steel who piss and moan to make wrestling in THEIR image without the fortitude to see what really needs to be done. I could leave but you know that guys like you are the reason I am still here doing this is.

Jack turns back to look at the camera and tilts his head slightly.

  You can mock me. You can say how you are better that what I was or what I am or what I may be in the future. It’s all fair game... My age... My quest... My purpose... Maybe say how I don’t deserve to be in Carnage Wrestling at all. You can say all that but in the back of your minds... You know the truth. You tipped your hand. You know what we are going to do to you and Chaos 50 is right around the corner.

The camera pulls in even closer as Jack lowers his voice.

  I may be older and worn down... But my heart burns with the knowledge that I can still make a difference in this world. Amber and I... We need to win. There is no tomorrow anymore. There is no third try. I know how good you two can be... But I also know how great we are. Trent... JC... Do you know what you see when you look at me?

Jack leans forward and grits his teeth.

  You see a Paragon.

The camera stays on Jack as we slowly fade to black...

Offline Distorted Angel

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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2018, 07:46:24 PM »
“Nobody lives forever, nobody stays young long enough. My past seemed like so much excess baggage, my future a series of long goodbyes, my present an empty flask, the last good drink already bitter on my tongue.”
― James Crumley, The Last Good Kiss




Undisclosed Rehab Facility
Somewhere in Arizona
09.01.2018
2:17pm




… “Why are you still here?” …

Good question.

Still Amber hadn’t come up with an answer she didn’t hate.

It had been asked from a place of real, raw emotion and she just couldn’t match it in a meaningful way. Jack had spoken from the heart, torn his chest open and her to peer inside perhaps with the hope that she might find a way to do the same- how was she supposed to tell him in that moment that there was little left except for the swarm of locusts that had taken up residence when she’d torn her heart out years earlier.

He’d laid his world on the line and she stood there with two black eyes and a suspected concussion trying to make sense of all the noise.

“Bathos. 10 letters. There’s an I at 4 and a M at 8.”

Amber snapped back to reality with a mental whiplash, she was no longer at Mean Machine watching a man who’d given his life to the wrestling industry question whether he still had a place. No longer was she in Vegas trying to figure up from down as the city seemed to collapse around them.

No longer was she fighting a battle that had long since been won without them.

No, she was in fucking Arizona with bruises in various states of rainbow pigmentation and a throbbing headache, leaning on the back of a plastic chair beneath an umbrella while the woman seated across the table did her very best not to acknowledge her presence by burying her head in a semi-completed crossword puzzle.

“Anticlimax. Oh and hello to you too.”

Miranda Grayson-Ryan said nothing, allowing the scratching of pencil across cheap paper to fill the void momentarily. Anything to avoid the obvious, to avoid the inevitable. To avoid the disappointment that would surely be to come.

“Ignore me all you want, I’m not leaving until you at least acknowledge that I made an effort.”

Spite was genetic and the effort- however minimal- was in vain, Amber lamented as she gingerly dropped into the chair, watching her mother do her damndest to pretend she didn’t exist. Their relationship had been tense for a long time, high-functioning alcoholism had claimed most of the credit while Amber’s choice of occupation had always been on par with a spit in the face of a puppy.

“Fuck knows one of us has to.”

Mumbling under her breath, she knew it didn’t matter if her mother heard or not. She’d just turned 51 only three days earlier, the years of alcohol abuse had deepened the lines on her face while age had bleached strands of familiar auburn to a dullen silver.
Amber was an only child, her father having walked out when she was seven in favour of starting another family across the country somewhere- she hadn’t learned that until adulthood though, until her half sister had made the effort to connect with aspirations of following in Amber’s footsteps.

It wasn’t exactly a secret how that all had ended up.

Every monster had their origin story though- her father loved wrestling, or at least that's what she vaguely recalled. Time and concussions had blurred even the sweetest nostalgia around the edges. Maybe he was just a casual fan watching whatever was on at the godforsaken times of night he’d drag himself back through the door- to a seven year old Amber Ryan though, she only saw that he loved it and even though she didn’t understand it, she made sure that she loved it too.

Perhaps that was part of the reason her mother despised it so much, the reason she saw her daughters successes through a lens of spite and loathing and refused to acknowledge that her daughter had taken what little hope she had and made something of it. That she’d taken tragedy and heartbreak, turning it into something more than she ever had the right to become.

Maybe it was the reason her mother ony saw it as a daughter's vain attempt to cling to memories and the idea of a man who had no intention of coming home.

Methodically Miranda placed the pencil down, deliberately conveying her displeasure at being put into this position without ever having to utter a sound- she’d long since perfected passive aggression, provided she had at least half a flask in her system to think straight first.

“You look well… for someone who’s been through a grinder. I suppose that's normal though for your type.”

Your type. Disgust dripped from every letter as it passed her lips, Miranda refused to call it wrestling. She refused to call it anything for fear that he might somehow be infected with whatever it was that drove anyone to the industry- a sense of purpose perhaps, a reason to drag one's self out of bed when the world seemed too cold and harsh. A fight for something more than just one's pride.

All foreign concepts for a woman who had long since given up.

If Miranda had gotten her own way, she’d have be passed out on the floor of their childhood home with a half bottle of wine dripping onto the carpet while the newest fling collected their clothes and left with a scowl of self-detriment. Instead, she was tucked away safely in one of those high profile ‘rehab’ facilities that never cured anyone but allowed vice in controlled moderation. Alternative therapies they’d called it, basically keeping everyone semi-medicated and contented to seem like progress had been made- vice never cured addiction just like chair shots never helped a concussion.

“What can I say. I work hard to maintain this look.”

Dishevelled, Amber would never admit aloud especially to her mother that she questioned how much more her body would allow, that counting the concussions and broken bones was becoming tougher as the numbers seemed to rise. She’d been doing this madness for 9 years professionally and another 7 in the carnivals- a deathmatch queen with a kamikaze wishlist somehow lasting as those deemed ‘better’ or ‘more qualified’ fell by the wayside.

Those scars, those bruises, the pains only when she moved and when she didn’t... they still meant something even after all this time, though it was becoming increasingly difficult to justify what that exactly was.

“So very typical of you Amber. You’re 28 this year and still you mess around with this… idiocy like a petulant child.”

“I’m 30 this year, but fuck it- I’ll take it as a compliment.”

Was it really idiocy? Granted some of the ridiculous things she’d done and matches she’d accepted bordered on psychopathy and masochism in varying measures- parking lot brawls and street fights, inside chambers and cells and structures designed with only violence in mind… hell she was the last active participant remaining from the only glass table scaffold match she’d ever witnessed. A match she lost and accounted for a lot of the jagged scars she still wore to this day.

Idiocy might have explained it, but so did success. So did innovation, so did sadism, so did proving that someone could indeed make something from nothing.

In truth she preferred any of those things over anything that might ever escape her mother's mouth.

“It’s all just a big game to you, isn’t it? This whole stupid charade you insist on, flouncing around in a skimpy outfit isn’t classified as a sport, it's debaucherous and it's embarrassing that you persist. Frankly I’d prefer you were a stripper cause at least then I wouldn’t have to lie to people about what it is you do.”

Same argument. Different day.

“You know precisely what it is I do- it keeps you tucked away all nice and comfy here instead of throwing up all over yourself between shitty boyfriends for starters.”

Miranda swallowed hard, slamming down the pencil with more authority this time.

“I never asked for this, I never wanted your dirty money or pity to ‘save me’. I’d rather be choking on my own vomit in my living room than spend another hour between these walls but you’ve made sure that won’t happen.
You continue to act as though you’re doing the right thing, that you’re doing me a favour- when you know the only thing I ask is…”


“You want me to settle down with a man I don’t love beyond a white picket fence with a minivan full of kids I’m going to be disappointed in. Cut the speech, I’ve got that one committed to memory. You want for me, what you couldn’t maintain yourself- and because I have aspirations higher than pregnancy and dinner parties, you refuse to accept it as anything more than trash.”

Amber hadn’t realized she’d raised her voice until she caught the stares of a couple near 20 feet away, ogling with the realization that Amber’s conversation was clearly more entertaining than her own.

“What you do… What you do is pretend Amber. You pretend to be tough, pretend to be a hero and you pretend to make a difference.
You don’t though- you don’t do any of those things. Not you, not anyone else in that self-absorbed drug addled wonderland you call wrestling.

I’ve seen what you do- I’m not as ignorant as you might think me. After all, I have a lot of time on my hands and occasionally I turn on my television and I swallow my pride looking for whatever trash company you last put your name to in hopes that I won’t see you making a mockery of decency.
Everytime though, you disappoint me because you’re still there acting like the stupid stunts you pull somehow make anyone care, that this crusade you’re so hell bent upon means more than just a cheap show for idiot fans.

You think you make a difference Amber? … Truly?

Cause the only one difference I see being made is the lightening of people's pockets.”


Leaning across the table, Miranda lowered her voice in an effort to reduce attention. Ashamed perhaps, that the conversation was still taking place.

“Mother’s aren’t supposed to bury their daughters but I can’t help but wish something bad happens if only for you to finally see sense. Tell me Amber, what happens then? What happens when you can’t do the crazy tricks anymore- do you think those people you ‘made a difference’ to will care? That for those who believed it ‘meant something’ will still pay to watch you crippled and retarded still trying to entertain them?

Part of me wishes that day never comes, a greater part of me hopes that it happens sooner rather than later. I wanted the best for you sweetheart, I wanted you to be someone…”


“I am.”

Miranda almost threw herself back in her chair mockingly, the faint lingering stench of alcohol on her breath like a distinct trail left clouded in her wake. Amber bit her tongue, hoping she still had enough self control not to bite straight on through.

“Are you really? Who are you then… Who are you to anyone. Show me one person who can, without a doubt, say that you are anything more than just another wannabe pretty face. Show me one person who thinks that this absurd pursuit of yours is worthwhile.

Coldly Miranda returned to her crossword, breaking the stalemate of eye contact.

“One day you’ll understand that it’s all a fucking sham. A farce that refuses to admit it's wrong. You bought into it hook line and sinker, now you expect the world to follow in kind.”


Amber wanted to scream. She couldn’t.

Words couldn’t convey the sounds that gurgled in her throat and that guttural bubbling of vitriol in her chest felt like a chunk of lead dropped between her ribs in replacement for something more significant. It wasn’t a farce or a sham, it was a game for rubes to lose a few dollars on- it was a fucking livelihood, the only one that she’d had. Without wrestling, where would Amber have ended up- likely in prison or as another statistic on a slab with a toe tag that no one would mourn.

It still fucking meant something. All of it. Good, bad and every moment in between- not only to those who believed in something greater than themselves, but those who saw something beyond just the physical endeavour like a glimmer of hope among the chaos.

People might not care, they might not mourn. Even the great Jack Michaels would likely end up moving on without much of a second thought, but in this moment… he still believed in her. Despite her shortcomings, disappointments and recklessness he still saw something worth beliving in. Even if she didn’t.

Jack wasn’t a sham. Maybe he was the only one.

He wasn’t a showman with a flair for the over dramatic and a convincing right hand. He wasn’t just pretending, going through the motions for an easy pay day and saying all the right things to build an army towards his cause… well that's what she wanted to believe anyway.

What she did, what Jack did, what Paragon did- it meant something.

Although what that was and how she contributed was still a muddle in her head, it still didn’t make alot of sense but sometimes things didn’t need to for them to be worth fighting for.
Jack Michaels believed in something, a better industry and maybe a better world because of it… Everyone else could get fucked if they didn’t buy in.

Could things be better? She wasn’t really sure.

It didn’t stop her wanting to fight for it. Wanting to defend it. Wanting to honour it in the only ways she knew. Sure it was someone else's belief, someone elses dream that they’d tried to forge from thin air into gold… Maybe that's what made it worthwhile.
She didn’t believe in it, she didn’t understand it at times… but someone else did.

That someone cared.

And therefore, so did she.

“Why are you still here?”

Leaning back into the chair, Amber contemplated for a few moments watching the older woman scrutinize her page, her mother would never understand or appreciate and Amber never expected her to. Brushing a couple errant strands of crimson from her face, Amber allowed the pent up sigh she’d been holding to seep through her lips as though the pause did anything to ease the discordance.

Whether Amber liked it or not- it was still a good question. Not that she’d ever admit it aloud, but perhaps now the answer was more simple.

More clear cut.

More meaningful.

“... Cause the things worth changing… ARE worth changing.”



******




“Here we go, here we go… here… we… go.

Rogues vs Paragon, take two. Only this time there’s no formalities with CON cause lets face it- the best thing that ever happened to them was kicking each others asses.
Let's be realistic for a few seconds lads cause I know that's about how long your collective attention spans last- ah fuck, I’ve probably lost you both already and we haven’t got to the good parts.

Never mind, you won’t listen anyway cause you’re the tag champs and fuck all else matters.

Wrong.

Nice try though.

Seriously… going into Vegas, going into the pay per view I think we all knew that the tag title match would end in only one of two very specific ways.
Option numero uno- Paragon beats everyone, walks away with the tag titles and become even more unstoppable with the city of Las Vegas on their heels and gold on their shoulders.

Great visual right- yeah admit it, you saw that in your heads.

Option numero dos- The Rogues beat CON in the turmoil of war and scamper away with the knowledge that their nostalgia run is already on countdown. Paragon try and figure out where in the fuck things went awry and quickly get back into the title picture to proverbially cut out the middle boys on the way to what is rightfully theirs.

Safe to say we all know how it ended up- and your friendly neighbourhood Paragon was left holding their… well, I’m sure you get the idea.

Must have been a small celebration in the back I’m sure- the idea of a Paragon cleansweep must have been terrifying cause then those titles would never go anywhere, would they? Everyone's holding their breaths and wearing their brown pants in anticipation for worst case scenario… only to find the worst is yet to come.

Surprise. Or is it?

Does anyone think we’d just let this go?

That we’d roll over and allow the Rogues to think that they did more than what they proclaim- maybe that's why people don’t like us, cause we tell things the way they are instead of the way they are imagined to be. The rose coloured glasses industry must make a pretty penny from Carnage I’m sure.

See, we made a declaration and while our dates might have been slightly off- the intent remains firmly the same kids. Paragon will be tag team champions- whether we have to be The Rogues, CON, whatever superheroic nonsense Avenger is up to… It legitimately doesn’t matter cause at our best I dare any team to even come close to us.

Oh wait… ‘The Answer’ and ‘The Son Of A Bitch’ beat us when we were at our best.

Lets nip this one in the bud, shall we?

The Rogues beat CON. By proxy, by default, by sheer luck and coincidence, by showing up at the right place at the right time… The Rogues beat Paragon. Go on, brag about those technicalities boys cause it's only gonna make me enjoy kicking them straight back down your necks even more.
Tell me, had CON not imploded so spectacularly- do you truly believe the outcome would be the same, would either of The Rogues have been able to capitalize in the same way and snatch an inevitable Paragon victory from beneath us…

Or would it have gone as everyone predicted, where the smart money really was…

That the Rogues would have taken a great trip down memory lane and basked in their former tag team glory before being soundly and swiftly knocked down a few pegs by Paragon. That CON as sneaky and sewer dwelling as they might have been would have crumbled beneath pressure of facing two actual teams instead of some nobodies thrown together and tag teams that couldn’t find their way to the ring without three assistants, someone to tie their boots and a seeing eye dog.

Think long and hard boys…

Not that.

Perverts.

Think about just what it took to win when there was a scapegoat, when there was an easy target to exploit. How much it took from both of you just to keep up and sneak by… and now start considering what it’ll take when there is no longer the easy way out, when there isn’t dissention in the ranks and a tag team supernova to cash in upon.

Paragon isn’t CON, Paragon isn’t even the Rogues.

We’re proven to be more, we’re proven to be the best. We earned our way into that tag title match, you guys mustered a couple point and stuck your noses where they didn’t belong cause you wanted one more shot at being relevant as a team…

So now it's our turn, now the shoe is on the other foot and full of hornets.

Now you’re the easy targets, the prey and the sitting ducks in the Paragon crosshairs.

Don’t consider this personal, cause that just assumes we care enough about you pair to put any real stake into it beyond the titles. We’re about business and making this place better, not wallowing in what used to be. Nostalgia is just like garbage, it gets stale when it gets old too.

Difference is, you don’t make garbage sentimental. You remember it for what it was and you move on- you don’t drag it out and roll around in it.

Just a thought."


Record:

4CW: 10-6-0
Carnage: 11-2-0
Life: 0-1-0

Offline Trent Steel

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Re: The Rogues vs. Paragon
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2018, 11:26:43 PM »

Online Boss Joe

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Re: The Rogues vs. Paragon
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2018, 11:59:06 PM »
I can't feel anything at all
This life has left me cold and damned
I can't feel anything at all
This love has led me to the end