[End Time] Chapter 2: Making Friends May 19, 2018 22:08:14 GMT -5
Post by Kenshin on May 19, 2018 22:08:14 GMT -5
“What the was your plan again? Reina?”
She emphasized her name like a parent would their child, which of course made the woman in question roll her eyes. She eyed the bottle of Jack she had in her hand with some longing before she tabled it on the dusty counter in her empty gym. The amount of attention she’d garnered after choking out a single person was honestly staggering, and while she didn’t regret it Reina certainly would have given her actions a few more seconds thought if she knew it was going to be this bad. She held the phone up to her ear and rolled her eyes, wishing the recipient could see the mannerism.
“Trish, please...” Reina deadpanned in a manner that could only be described as ‘unapologetic’. “Kevin already gave me the stern talkin’ to. You think I need this from you?”
“Yes, I do,” Trish responded, barreling through any response from Reina by talking louder. “WE HAD a plan Reina. A nice, solid plan that you ruined with your bullcrap attack. I mean, what’s your follow up? A snide promo on how the WFWF ‘has no competition for Reina Kenshin’, or something similar?”
Voice indignant and more than a little childish, the martial artist and definite adult hung up the phone and tossed it away. She’d call back in a few minutes and apologize, and Reina had until that long to decide if she wanted to forgive her. Not for her comment, of course, but because Trish was right. Had she really gone so mediocre that even someone like Trish VanReardon could call out her playbook like that? That told her something, but it wasn’t an easy problem to fix. She wasn’t the best at cutting promos. Reina Kenshin was the period at the end of sentences, the one that put that trash talking crap to sleep. She liked to think she had decent spit game in her but…well, it had been a long time since she’d had to put much effort into anything. Her stomach knotted with anticipation. She wanted this fight and it gnawed at her that time wasn’t moving faster.
“Ha, she gotcha didn’t she?” Reina looked up to see Kevin O’Neil walk in from the back, indicating he’d somehow got through that particular locked door. She would have asked how, but decided she didn’t need any more of a headache. “Told you.”
“Whatever,” Reina muttered, looking towards the phone she’d tossed with some apprehension, then looked back to Kevin. “Am I that bad?”
“Predictable,” Kevin shrugged. “God knows we’ve worked with worse. You got game, no one doubts that. But I think the idea we got will get the juices flowing, though since you gone and decided that making friends was out of the agenda it’ll be rougher waters.”
“Why do you, any of you, think that making friends is an idea at all?” Reina raised a questioning eyebrow at her ‘friend’, who was currently setting up an area in the corner of the derelict gym, though Reina guess he picked that area since it was the least dusty and grimy. “I don’t know what part of my personality screams ‘please let’s hug it out’ or whatever, but ya’ll need to give it a rest.”
“Well, we do have contingency plans,” Kevin muttered as he went about his business. He held up a finger to stop Reina’s indignant reply and quickly walked to the back, then came back a few minutes later with more equipment. “No arguing, Reina. You agreed to do this our way when the CTN signed you on. Granted your…‘debut’ wasn’t what we would have liked but it is what it is. We’ll keep you more in the loop so you don’t make any more…rash decisions.”
The martial artist decided not to cave Kevin’s head in with a well-placed kick. She had far too much need for his expertise and presence, and while motivated to get in that ring to fight there wasn’t much else Reina was motivated to do. So, while he was probably just repeating the usual CTN bullcrap jargon, she decided that harming him would probably harm her in the long run.
“…it won’t work like that, you know,” Reina said, her tone low. Kevin stopped what he was doing and looked at his charge, his head tilted. “Your rules. Your…stipulations. I do what I want. I’ll follow along, for now, but the attosecond I find what I want at odds with what you bungholes need, believe you me I’m gonna go for what’s best for me.”
“We know,” Reina and Kevin look to entrance of the gym to where Trisha VanReardon was standing, having just arrived. Her gaze held thinly veiled disgust of her surroundings, but Reina didn’t hold it against her. It was obvious, just from her appearance and gait, that Trisha as a person that was used to a certain way of living. But what Reina appreciated about her was that she wasn’t afraid to get her hands any kinds of dirty if it meant getting the job done. “You weren’t chosen to lead the CTN to main stage glory because you’re…‘stable’. But Kevin and I are professionals, and we’ll work around your game. You need to focus on two things; the ring, and just how bad you want to get in that ring with Tyler Draven and rip him apart.”
There was a moment of silence as both Kevin and Trisha stared at Reina, who set her eyes on one, then the other before shrugging, her indifference radiating off of her. Trisha clapped her hands.
“Excellent. Now…” she took out her phone. “Let’s get this trash heap cleaned up. The world needs a good impression of you before we get into this.”
“Into what?” Reina growled, hands on hips.
“Why…your close-up, Ms. Kenshin.” Trish smiled coyly, and Reina paled.
The scene opens up to a rather clean looking gym, with obviously new equipment and a full sized ring taking up most of the front area. The camera pans over the area before landing on two figures at a table. One is the ever radiant Trisha VanReardon, while the other, slightly more grumpy looking individual, could only be Reina Kenshin. The camera settled in front of the round table they sat at, and the busty blond gave a flashy smile and bright eyes to start the show.
“Welcome, everyone, to CTN Insider. I am your ever lovely host Trisha VanReardon. Today, and for several episodes of Insider, I will be talking to Reina Kenshin, one of Japan’s most controversial female wrestlers. In her time there she racked up a body count like no other and now she’s moved on to the WFWF, with her eyes set on more than just gold. Reina, welcome.”
“Yo.” Trish had told her before the show started that the best way to handle an interview was to be yourself. Which was good because Reina didn’t know how to be anyone else. Still, her abrupt response to Trish’s sweeping intro was met with a close flash of Trish’s blue eyes, and Reina sat up in her chair a little, hopefully hiding her hard swallow. “Thank you for taking the time. I know you’re busy.”
Trish beamed. “So, the wrestling world has been on pins and needles, wondering what you’re going to do next. Are you going to attack another legend? Challenge some title holder for a shot at glory? It’s hard to say if you have any competition, but the odds seem dipped in your favor at this point. So, tell us…what does Reina Kenshin want?”
For a moment Reina looked at the ground as if contemplating it before she looked up at Trish, her whiskey-on-the-rocks tone firm and confident. “I want a fight.”
“A fight?” Trish tilted her head slightly, though she brought it back as she leaned in closer to Reina. “With who?”
“Whoever.” Reina shrugged. “A fight is a fight is a fight. That’s what I wanted in NJA. That’s what I craved, but no one could give me. Sure, there were some that came close. But none of them could give me a fight. Could make me…” Reina pursed her lips and looked away, holding up a finger to pause the conversation momentarily before she came back, her countenance bright as she came up with the right word. “No one could make me sweat. No one could make me really worry about a match.”
“And what about Tyler Draven?”
“What about him?” Reina answered dismissively. “Beyond the fact that dude looks like he belongs in a homemade porn called ‘emo twinks gone wild’, I don’t know anything about the guy. Personally, I like it that way. Keeps me on my toes.”
“So you don’t know anything about him?” Trish tapped a finger to her chin. “Do you think that’s wise?”
“Maybe not. But I look at Tyler Draven and…” Reina shakes her head in mock sadness. “I don’t sweat. I don’t feel much of anything, really. Does pity count?”
“But how will you go about defeating someone you know nothing about?” Trish asked, her tone adamant. “There is information out there about him. You could learn his tactics, his ways…”
“Not my deal,” Reina shrugged, and Trish nodded. She didn’t seem angry, though she was probing and Reina couldn’t tell what for. “I mean, why? If you plan for a fight, if you see how your opponent moves, how they flow, what moves to look out for, how to counter them…man, not only does that sound like a lot of work, but isn’t that boring? Wouldn’t people rather see two people clash in that ring and figure out, on the fly, just how they’re gonna go about defeating their opponent? That’s fighting. That’s living.”
“Like your last match in NJA?” Reina opened her mouth to respond but stopped and closed it slowly, a motion noticed by anyone that was paying attention. Trish certainly was, and she pressed. “Your opponent wasn’t able to walk for two months.”
“She agreed,” Reina growled. “She agreed to the match and the stipulation. Not my fault she couldn’t hang. By the end of my time there they knew what I was. They knew what they’d created by denying me what I wanted. She thought she could hang with me. ME. And that was her true crime, if you really wanna know. Thinking you could possibly give me a sendoff match worth my time and effort, after everything that happened in that place, the disrespect, I…”
Reina trailed off, then leaned back in her chair as she and Trish seemed to engage in a staring contest for a few moments before Trish brought her microphone to her lips. She was about to speak before Reina raised a hand to cut her off.
“Let’s judge some books by their covers, eh? I, and probably most of the world, can tell just by looking at Tyler Draven’s broken, ass nasty face that everything that dude has ever accomplished, in his career or life, has absolutely radiated with mediocrity. I just don’t have it in me to respect my fellow wrestlers until I’ve gotten in that ring and felt what it is to fight them, to push them to the limits. I…I need to feel that fight. And, as long as we’re judging books by covers, Tyler Draven doesn’t look like he’s up to snuff.”
“And what if he is?” Trish’s irritated reply came right as Reina ended her speech. “What if goes into that match and beats you?”
Reina snorted, the noise loud and annoying. “I mean, okay. Let’s say we get in that ring and he…puts up a fight. I can give him that one.”
“But you’re judging books by covers.” Trish looked a little more irritated. “Tyler Draven-”
“Is my next opponent.” Reina finished, then stood up. “And after him, someone else, then someone else, then someone else...Tyler Draven is meat, Trish. The minute he was put in a match with me he became just another product added to the grinder.”
When Reina turns to leave the scene, the camera cuts and fades to black.