CONCILIO ET LABORE
GLORY GLORY CONOR FUSE
(EVERYTHING LASTS FOREVER – 3)
Dearness Living Community – Boiler Room
Conor Fuse’s Homemade Prison
TWO DAYS AGO
CRACK. CRACK. CRACK.
I hardly move a muscle. The fucking pain rifles down my spine. I can barely hear myself think.
He said I have a shitty personality. He looks at my hobbies as a joke. I thought he grasped what I’m about. Fuck, I wished he understood me better.
No. The champ is angry. Furious. He’s in self-defense mode. He believes I’m here to take something from him when the reality is…
I AM HERE TO ADD, NOT SUBTRACT, CHRISTOPHER.
Yes. I am taking your World Title. No, that doesn’t mean the current #97 is gonna be left empty handed.
I will show him a whole new side to his career. We are going to be tied together for a very long time!
CRACK. CRACK. CRACK.
Need I remind Christopher that I am the good guy. Good guys don’t take. Good guys redeem!
Lovable, adorable, I am-
FFS, this hurts so god damn badly, as I desperately try to emerge from the clutches of The Game Boy. He racks me across his shoulders in America’s version of the Enhanced Interrogation Techniques.
CHRISTOPHER, I want to scream. LISTEN TO ME. I WILL NOT STEER YOU WRONG.
My main hobby, my true love…
Much like you.
Fact check: EXACTLY fucking like you!
Beyond the flag and citizenship lies someone who is devoted to his practice… his craft… who breathes this sport and ultimately wants the most out of it.
YOU’RE JUST LIKE MEEEEEEEE MOTHER FUCKER.
CRACK. CRACK. CRACK.
America’s ability to win at any moment. His strength to withstand an onslaught of pain coming his way.
I will bring pain.
I will bring agony.
For I am calamity!
I scream at the top of my lungs. Game Boy is twice the size of Christopher but much less skilled. The submission he has locked on may not resemble the truth when I get to the World Champion a few days from now. I’m aware this is the minor leagues. Big leagues play on Sunday.
I fly out tomorrow, if I make it. I told Game Boy not to let me down until I tap or pass out.
…Passing out is coming up very soon unless I escape.
I use my free hand to pull at Game Boy’s mask, in a play to break free. However, I stop when I realize this isn’t something I can do if/when America has me locked into his clutches. The World Champion wears no mask.
Gouge his eyes instead, Fuse! I bellow.
And then I dig my index finger into Game Boy’s eyes, continuing my Houdini pledge to break free from this merciless hold.
CRACK. CRACK. CRACK.
This isn’t smart… physically destroying myself a few days before I fly overseas.
But I am young. Capable. Flexible. Easily recoverable.
Finally, I break free! I swing around The Mini Boss’ shoulders and latch onto his head. I would slam him face-first to the cement floor if I wanted to. A DDT emphasizing my escape.
I stop before I throw my weight to the floor. I am not here to hurt my friend. I’ve asked him to hurt me, not the other way around.
I kneel to catch my breath. My right hand attempts to feel my back but I only have sensation through my right hand, not my back. Can’t feel shit.
You’re gonna kill yourself before you have a chance to fight to the death, Conor.
I know what I’m doing.
I need to continue to practice for Christopher America. If I don’t understand his moves, I can’t counter them. If I don’t enter March to Glory with a sound understanding of the World Champion I will let myself down. I’ll let him down.
“Okay, my little buddy,” I announce, raising my head from the ground. Game Boy stands, he looms over me. “Throw me around in some American suplexes.”
I can see the body language Game Boy displays. My mute freak doesn’t want to harm me further but knows he is going to, regardless.
The floor of my prison is made out of cement. These suplexes will severely hurt.
The lock on my cell is secured. There’s no way I’ll be able to escape. Not that I want to. Not that I would.
I am in here for a reason.
Just a few more days to suffer. It’ll all be over soon.
Then the real fun begins.
— — — — —
Why do you fear losing to me? It’s not going to hurt you.
You think you’ll fall into obscurity? You’re one of the most secure names in all of wrestling. You’re about to embark on a year-long World Championship reign. If it’s cut short, it doesn’t take away from you being at the absolute top of the High Octane food chain.
You are the last level, the final boss.
So am I.
And when our worlds collide, yours is not going to end with devastation. In fact, I will hold my arm out as you fall. You are welcome to grab onto it and I will pull you up to safety. I am NOT here to let you die.
We’ll get to that part of the campaign later.
No. I want you as my opponent. I NEED you. It is VITAL we wrestle many times so as a result, it is absolutely paramount I take the World Championship back.
I can give you more in victory than I can provide you in a loss.
You are all the things you think you are and then some. As if you aren’t able to see or understand.
You know god damn well who you fucking are.
Do not fear failure. It is not a step back. It is a move in the right direction. Nevertheless, you will be irate at the setback, I’m counting on it. You won’t fizzle out, either. You’re on every poster Lee makes. You are the March to Glory model.
He creams himself over you.
I’m well aware of what he thinks of me. But even he can’t stop The Vintage now. He’s tried. He’s slowed me down, sure. Lee has stripped me clean… tossed me out, literally tossed me out there at the beginning of WarGames to fend for myself. I go bell-to-bell anyway and walk away with nothing.
I’M THE ONE who’s trying to fix mistakes, Chris, not you.
You have the championship.
I have nothing more than a mere glimmer of hope… to defeat you… to take away your lifeblood… to dangle it in front of you like a carrot and say…
LET’S. FUCKING. PLAY.
Again again again again again again again again again again again.
And I will do this. Oh I promise I will die trying otherwise.
See what losing to Conor Fuse can do to you?
I won’t make you suffer. You’ll live like you’ve never lived before.
I vow to you… I swear on my grave… after I defeat you I will walk out the following Chaos and I will tilt my head into the rafters, close my fists into tiny balls of rage and scream your name to meet me in the center of the ring so we can honestly get this thing started.
Other than the pending match, our only interaction was timing our own individual matches against Brian Hollywood.
Kinda boring in the grand scheme of things.
That CANNOT and WILL NOT be our only interaction.
This CANNOT and WILL NOT be our only singles battle.
You will respect me and you will lose to me. I, in return, may lose to you in the future. But the first step is up to me… snatch what used to be mine and humble you at my feet. Confuse you. How Conor Fuse defeated the great Christopher America. The THREE TIME World Champion who goes back into battle against the NEW THREE TIME World Champion, yours truly.
Losing to me is nothing to be ashamed about but most importantly it is nothing to fear.
It is inevitable.
Because I am.
I have to be.
I absolutely have to.
— — — — —
Outside Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
NOW – MAR10 DAY, 2023 – 07:00
The last time I was in the United Kingdom I was recovering from my mental and physical scars after losing the World Championship to Mike Best. I fled to Britain early, so I could lock myself away and begin to pick up the pieces.
Guess this whole isolation thing is on repeat.
For the record, in 2021 I locked myself in a hotel, not a prison. I also stayed in Scotland where I had spent a few of my younger years chasing this wrestling dream. I’d sit outside the Edinburgh Castle, on the high mountain and work on reframing my mind into a positive space. Mike had previously nailed my hands to a cross. I couldn’t wrestle. Couldn’t play video games. Could barely even sleep. Fucking brutal.
It has taken me a year and a half to return to this exact spot, where I sit, back against the outside of the castle walls. It’s too early for tourists right now, I’ll leave before this wide open location becomes congested.
I may be in a very stable mental frame but my body aches in different ways. I’ve spent the past week being brutally beaten by The Game Boy and I have the wounds to show for it. I’m lucky I didn’t slip a disk with the amount of time I was put into his torture rack. I survived countless suplexes and many other maneuvers which I expect to come my way on Sunday via Christopher America.
In 2021, I was so mentally defeated. It took forever to find the inner strength to move on. I didn’t want to enter the ICONIC Best Tournament. The last thing on my mind was the belief I could win it…
I did win, becoming a two-time World Champion. The next match I would lose… well, it would be at the hands of who I traveled over here to see next.
If I could only tell myself what lies ahead… predict the opportunities that lay before me… walking into ICONIC that year and blowing past the other six of HOW’s best… it would’ve motivated me to heal even quicker.
I wonder what I will tell myself the next time I am in the UK.
I hope it’s something substantial. What mattered to me in 2021 was learning to become a threat. It was the notion of picking myself up when I’m down and never quitting or believing I can’t do it. In other words, it was the generic typical bullshit most wrestlers will tell themselves. Don’t run from your dreams! Embrace the adversity! You will find what you’re looking for on the other side of fear!
The Conor Fuse of today is here for something more.
I mean the fact I am back at the EDI Castle shows that I failed. Failed in the sense I am no longer World Champion and I built a trash WarGames team. But it also means I worked past that failure and went through the clichés I previously mentioned.
I need to defeat Christopher America not for the World Title or to right any wrongs. I need to win so he will chase me and I can have the feud I for so long desired.
In 2021 I learned it takes a while for your mind to heal. My body, while in a very weakened state, will be ready to go on Sunday.
My mind has been focused for a while.
Bobbinette told me to receive counselling because I was acting strangely. Sure, I was struggling. Apparently I thought Blaire Moise was Lindsay Troy. I thought a convenience store was my hotel. I’d giggle and laugh at nothing in particular. It was a mental disposition I developed due to the fact I wanted to inflict real, serious damage on someone who hurt a friend of mine.
Oh, I inflicted that damage.
As a result, I have recently been able to calm my mind. Channel this instability into something that works for me. I believe I am there. You can’t argue with facts. Facts are I won the tournament to be #1 contender and I also pushed Brian Hollywood aside when he wanted to intervene.
I said no.
This is a very different Conor Fuse than the 2021 version. I am focused. I know what I’m here to accomplish.
Today I rest much easier against the Edinburgh Castle. I won’t lie, it’s good to see the sunlight. Being imprisoned in the boiler room of an old folks home has its disadvantages. It’s nice to be let free and wander into the real world again, even if this is only for a couple of days.
When I win the World Championship, I have made prior arrangements already. I know the time inside my homemade prison will be done since my feud with Christopher America will simply be getting started. I’ll grow accustomed to the outside world once more.
I close my eyes and feel the physical pain relinquish from my body.
I am a new and improved Vintage. A wrestler I never thought I’d become.
Look out champion, for I am on route.
— — — — —
What do you have to do with Conor Fuse and the World Championship hanging in the balance?
Absolutely everything, buddy.
When you returned and proceeded to slander me, completely undoing everything I worked so fucking hard for over the past two years… I won’t lie, it was wounding. Cut me deep. There’s physical violence and there’s also the mental game. Rarely does somebody dig their nails into my scalp and start pulling out parts of my neurology. I can normally keep it together.
Not even Mike bothered me like YOU did.
Regardless, I sucked it up. I entered WarGames first on night two. I persevered through your plan until the final three and received the ultimate blow when your little Board member screwed me over. You got what you wanted, the title was pulled out from my arms and your company was “safe”. Fuck that noise, bro. I carried your promotion, I did everything I was supposed to while you were on the sidelines. FTR this was your own fucking fault, Lee. Re: You being on the sidelines. You allowed your son to KO you clean in the center of the octagon.
I can’t help you if you can’t help yourself.
Don’t worry, I got my big boy pants on. I healed and worked my way back. I stuck it out for a friend and now I’m at the top of the singles !RANKings again.
You refereed my match last week. It was really nice to see you up close and personal and those are some killer Jordan 1’s. No sarcasm on the shoes, I should get me a pair. Otherwise get bent. I remain in your company because I do not enjoy taking the easy way out, I am not like the others. I am completely fine to oppose you, too. We don’t gotta get along. Who the fuck enjoys their boss?
Nevertheless, I am determined to earn your respect.
And end your stupid Final Alliance nonsense before WarGames even begins.
You once put stock into Cancer Jiles.
The fucking egg guy.
I’m 100 times better than Cancer Jiles.
Even in his PRIME.
I’m your guy. You’re gonna see it one day. I am the best thing to happen to High Octane since your SON walked through the doors.
I sell out arenas for you.
I throw my body on the line for you.
I suck it up and wrestle hard anytime you tell me.
Yeah, I’m an ADD headcase manchild who can’t STFU for his own good but I’m the exact same in the ring which is a good thing and pretty sure the fans eat The Vintage’s skill set up.
You like money?
Most of this campaign is talking about Christopher America and it damn well should be. He’s the man on my level and the one I can create long standing friction with. But you are the secondary reason, the itch in the back of my mind I can’t quite scratch. Imma scratch ‘til a scar forms.
The way I see Sunday playing out: I take the World Title, YOUR World Title away from Christopher America and he seeks revenge. I rebound off what you stole from me in the first place and I’m sure you’ll be plotting and planning to get me back.
Catch me if you can, Lee.
Spoiler: NOBODY’S GOOD ENOUGH.
I run too fast; I ascend too quickly. I’m back at the top after spending the previous calendar year attending garbage counselling sessions with Bobbie and saying hi to the MOM Squad.
Perhaps as champion I’ll double down and become a member of the MOM Squad.
That’s a joke, Lee. An exaggeration. Trust me with #97 like your brother did. Like the fans trust me.
I’ll never let you down.
You’ll see, Lee. A world of hurt is coming for America, the person. And if you put WarGames in the United States, it’ll come for the country as well.
This is me, telling you, unless you start changing your mind about Conor Fuse, you’re not gonna be happy this weekend.
The funny thing is, I know there’s a part of you that gets it. On a yearly basis you offer me a contract and I ultimately sign on the dotted line. Neither of these things have to happen if you hate me this much. In the end, you’re a businessman. You recognize I draw money but you don’t want me as the figurehead, front and center.
Too fucking bad, BB.
Be the referee again on Sunday for all I care. I know a title change is taking place. It’s happening, I’m walking away champion.
Deal with it. Like Chris will. Stronk. Solex and Clay.
I’ll show you; you’ll see. Brace yourself for frustration, anger and resentment. Your boy won’t be able to get it done. Like your boy Stronk prior to that.
When the dust has cleared, be thankful I don’t stop America’s heart from beating. Can’t be having that this time, I need him for the foreseeable future.
I never forget, Lee. I never forgive, either.
Kinda sounds like you.
I’m your guy.
Think about it.
— — — — —
Dearness Living Community – Boiler Room
Conor Fuse’s Homemade Prison
I can’t stop laughing. On my knees, a pool of blood forms below my mouth. I’m gushing boat loads of plasma in front of my eyes. Most people watching would have concern for my well being… for my mental health abilities, or lack thereof. I promise you I am cognitively sound. I am cool, calm, collected. The laughing part is just a coping mechanism. Yeah, a side effect. A way to manage the pain coursing through my body.
Honestly, I’d scream for MOAR but this time I put my hand up. I can sense The Game Boy taking a step back. He won’t hit me again.
“I think we’re good,” I say, as blood continues to pour. I’m stunned my mini boss was able to understand what I’m trying to convey. I can barely speak. “See you next week when I return.”
Slowly, I lift my head and close my mouth. He exits the prison, locks the door and takes the key. The Game Boy will bring the key back to Walter and I will be locked away for the rest of the night, until I fly out for the United Kingdom tomorrow.
I’ve done all I can in this chamber. I have channeled a killer instinct and I have successfully implemented it. I have soared through the singles division and found my World Championship rematch. Game Boy has beaten the piss out of me for an entire week, preparing The Ultimate Gamer for the most important feud of my career. No doubt a masterclass level of opponent awaits.
When I exit the prison tomorrow, I will be leaving for the last time. I’ve already instructed The Game Boy to dismantle the cell entirely, so I can’t change my mind upon return.
Until now, this has been a successful experiment. I am proud of the work I have done inside these bars.
To my surprise, my mouth has stopped pouring blood at a rapid speed. It’s nice to know I won’t be passing out, I’ll have the last 12 hours of prison life to myself, uninterrupted.
I stand. My back is destroyed. I probably have two black eyes. A concussion is a possibility.
I move to the back of my cell, where the flag still remains.
I fixate on the image. The moment captured forever. The champion’s eyes, knowing he had pinned me mere seconds ago. The title belt is likely to be awarded to him, as Boettcher holds the gold high for everyone to see.
I shake my head with passion. The moment is so inspiring.
I recognize you, Christopher America. I won’t push you into the shadows, I will not cast you away. That’s not my intention, as I intend to oppose you for a very long time.
And now, with the entire future in front of us, while I am barely able to stand, my hands shaking in exhaustion…
I have gone through hell and we haven’t even wrestled yet. Think what I’ll be willing to put myself through on Sunday.
I can’t stop laughing at the thought of it. Blood dribbles down my mouth, I can barely raise my arms.
Here’s to the moment you defeated me, Christopher. And the night I fell to Lee Best.
And I ask of you, my new friend, after all I’ve said and done, after my hopes and dreams are laid out in the open…
Do you still want to play?