“So Jack, how have your exercises been going?”
Fade in, as High Flyer lays back first on a velvet plush sofa. He stares up at the ceiling fan, gently twirling above. Scholastic bookshelves cover the walls like wallpaper, as only framed doctorettes break up the monotony of a makeshift library. Flyer wears black slacks and a white collared shirt, with the top button undone. A bowtie hangs crooked dangling from his neck. Sitting across from Flyer with her legs crossed is the emerald frame of Dr. Clarissa Cambridge. She wears a dark green skirt suit that would make Mary-Lynn jealous.
High Flyer: Good. I think? I dunno. It’s weird.
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: How is it weird?
High Flyer: Y’know. I’ve spent a career making money off my anger. It’s strange suppressing it, but it seems to be working lately. I got the win over MJ.
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: What about your personal life?
High Flyer: Oh, that’s a dumpster fire. But it’s smoldering, not ablaze.
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: That’s good for you.
High Flyer: Kate and I… I dunno. There’s still passion there but she doesn’t want me wrestling anymore. And I’ve only got a few more years, at most left in this ol’ body.
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: I don’t think Kate wants you to be unhappy Jack.
High Flyer: Then why does she want me to retire?
Cambridge leans forward, tilting her glasses to the tip of her nose as she looks at Flyer. Harmen makes sure to lock and maintain eye contact.
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: Jack, she doesn’t like the man you become when this business consumes you. She doesn’t want to see that. Again.
High Flyer: So, you really think I can have my wife and my career?
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: I think it’s worth trying. Don’t you?
Flyer bites his lower lip.
High Flyer: What if I lose both?
Dr. Clarissa Cambridge: Well… at least you’ll know…
**MULTIPLE BURSTS OF STATIC interlaced with pictures of Dan Ryan being a family man**
The same white room as before. Can’t even see the grout in the tiles. The puddle of red blood has pooled and congealed by this point. Now, however, Jack Harmen sits indian style in the center, staining his snow white trunks. The towel he used to cover his battle scar is now stained red, like a single color tie dye. His hands sit on his knees, a sense of quiet meditation. One eye looks up to the camera, the other covered from shame.
High Flyer: Anger, is such a powerful emotion. I’ve fed off it for years. I’ve made a career out of anger. People called me crazy all this time, a lunatic, but really?
I was just angry.
Flyer looks away from the camera, so the towel covering his eyes seems to cover his entire face.
High Flyer: And what did that anger get me? A volatile chance at glory. It lost MJ the LSD title. It lost me the tag titles for the Industry. It lost me… everything and everyone I’ve ever cared about… It lost me every title I’ve ever held. It’s lost me every alliance I’ve ever had. It lost me my wife… Before I came to HOW, I was alone. Now? Hell based off what I’ve heard spew from D-Ry and MJ… Maybe I am again?
Flyer looks down.
High Flyer: …but at least I know this time…
Flyer looks back up to the camera. His busted eye playing hide and seek with the camera as the towel sways in the wind.
High Flyer: … It’s not my fault.
Flyer sits up from his Indian position in a quick lunge. Almost like a pirouette. He cracks his neck once.
High Flyer: Dan Ryan wants me angry? Mt. Vesuvius, the temper of a Lunatic, fiery fury that scorches the earth and everything it touches? Of course he does. Of course he wants me thinking through a fog of rage. Angry me makes mistakes. I know it. Always have. Listen. Angry me? He loses, just as much as he wins.
Flyer rubs his clean shaven chin.
High Flyer: In the end? Anger loses me more than it gets me. But see… I’m done being angry. I’m done being the bad man. The mad man. Doing the same thing, over, and OVER. I’m over it. See, I’m honestly trying, first time in my life, I wanna be good… and I know, you think you’ve been playing the part of good man for months and blame it for your short comings. You find the value in fury and determination, I understand more than most… but all I see is the Egobuster having his ego burst and deflate over a sense of impotent frustration. The eMpire beat us. Simple. That’s on us, all of us, but most of all?
Flyer raises his hand.
High Flyer: It’s on angry me.
Pacing a moment, Flyer lowers his hand and carefully chooses his next words with a hint of hesitation.
High Flyer: So of course Dan Ryan wants to fight me angry, get me all furious and blustered with meaningless bravado, seeking vengeance without the conviction to back it up. Of course Dan Ryan wants that. He wants me to mess up… because, just so you all know out there in TV land…
Flyer winks at the camera with his good eye.
High Flyer: That’s the only way he keeps his ICON title.
High Flyer: He makes me lose my temper? Not only do I lose a shot at the ICON title, I probably wind up handicapping myself in the LBI in my quest to face off against maybe the greatest champion I’ve ever seen, Mr. Cecilworth Fart. Who knows what’d happen if I don’t tie both hands behind my back? Or if I don’t give in to my anger? A clear headed High Flyer is smarter than a bloodthirsty lunatic.
Flyer leans down into the pool of blood he’d been sitting in, and grabs a bit. He raises his hand so the blood drips down, past his wrist. It soaks into his pores and drips all over his clean white tights.
High Flyer: The Lunatic is not a man. That monster has spilt more blood, he is a weapon, one you point and spray, hoping you don’t get caught up in the crossfire. There’s no nuance. There’s no… focus.
Flyer clutches his hand into a fist.
High Flyer: And I know, I feel it in my bones… that’s what I’ve been missing. I took my shots, waited, patient… the first opportunity against MJ? I squeaked out a win.
High Flyer: Cause a win’s a win.
Flyer throws his hands up in the air, and sighs shortly after.
High Flyer: I know where I stand with you Dan. I know we were never the best of friends. We hardly ever got along. And I will relish… absolutely FEED off of being in the ring across from you. You’re a LEGEND. From one to another. This match could implode the wrestling universe, sell out the Tokyo Dome if we wanted!
Flyer pauses, a sense a remorse, as his head hangs just a little lower than before. The energy sucked out of the room.
High Flyer: … but you don’t want a match. You want a war.
High Flyer: War? With Dan Ryan? I am absolutely DELIGHTED! We will RIPPLE across the wrestling industry, TEAR the wrestling world APART! As long as we don’t do the same to the Industry… After we make HISTORY together Dan… after I’ve taken your ICON championship, and take ALL my momentum up against Lee Best’s illegitimate son…
The camera cuts to an extreme close up. The towel covering his eye falls, revealing his battle scar and his determination.
High Flyer: I’ll still have your back D-Ry.
High Flyer: Long as you don’t stab mine.
Flyer laughs, and then pats the imaginary belt over his shoulder he begins to mime holding.
High Flyer: Then again, maybe you’ll just take that blade and hit your ol’ ICON strap. And you’ll realize, anger and fury loses you everything. In the end, it’ll finally remind you… FURY, does not keep championships.
With a deep inhale and his head held high, Flyer takes his blood covered hand and draws five streaks down his face. When his hand dips out of frame…
High Flyer: Conviction does.
Listen, here’s the truth.
I want to fight Dan Ryan. I need to know which one of is better.
But I don’t want to destroy the industry. I need to be careful.
I need to focus. Dan is angry boy.
God. I’m tired of being alone. I can’t lose another family because we’re hot headed stubborn bulls batting horns. I’m tired of traveling the road by myself, city to city, looking for cheap lodging because I don’t need more than a ten year old mattress and a flat pillow.
This whole writing things down thing has REALLY been helping my sanity.
Helps me focus.
I’ve got fire. I’ve got passion. But I best not let it consume me. I’m too old, I’ve used up my Phoenix lives.
They’re like cats’ lives but you get seven, cause lucky.
I better use that fire to light the tinder of those around me. Focus the flame, light the rocket, shoot to the stars.
Make sure we keep the Industry alive.
Kill Mike Best.
That’s the important thing.
And the ICON title.
I want it.
That’s more important than anything…
… this may be harder than I think…