The door to Christopher America’s hotel room swung wildly, smacked against the doorstop, and made a sound like a gunshot. Standing in the doorway, holding the HOW World Championship in his arms and his hotel key card was the unmistakable outline of Christopher America. He had used his foot to push open the door before plodding into the room. As he entered, he took a deep breath as he took in his surroundings.
Like a reoccurring nightmare, America found himself once more in a foreign country, right before War Games, reflecting on what was to come.
This time, though, felt slightly different. He was walking in as champion, instead of walking in to become champion. And for the first time, he felt it. That uneasiness in the pit of his stomach. That uneasiness was due to many things, not the least of which was the need to depend on others.
Throughout the years, America tried with tag teams… the AoA, Austin Reeves, Mike Best, but when it came right down to it, counting on himself was where he felt the most comfortable. War Games had tried. It certainly changed other aspects of his look, his style, and his personality. But, when it came to trusting others and being comfortable with relying on others, America ultimately refused to budge.
But the other reason for the uneasiness was something he never told anyone. It was a feeling that he’d been harboring for some time now since returning. And it was time to come to grips with it. Because what mattered at War Games, what happened at War Games, hinged on this.
America walked over and placed his championship carefully down on the table by the wall. He adjusted her slightly as if he were trying to make her more comfortable. When he felt her positioning was acceptable, he sat across from her on the bed.
He had a slight smile on his face as he indulged himself in her beauty. Even in the low light of the hotel room, she radiated. He took in her soft curves, her warm red leather that she was dressed in, and the beautiful jewels that adorned her front metallic plate.
Christopher America: You look beautiful tonight.
America spoke with a softness and sincerity that he rarely ever expressed openly. It was a part of himself that he kept hidden from almost all, only revealing it when pivotal moments seemed to arise. Pivotal moments like now… the prospect of defending her honor inside of War Games.
Christopher America: I… I want to get something off my chest and I just… I just want you to listen. Is that okay?
Only America himself could hear the answer.
Christopher America: I want to let you know that I know… I wasn’t your first choice. If I was then… well, then Tyler and I both wouldn’t have won, would we? You would’ve just chose him, I would’ve won the most War Games and then I could fade back off into the night.
You’d be happy.
I’d be happy.
And HOW would live on… safely, securely… with another Best family member at the helm.
But somewhere along the way, somewhere between the end of War Games and the following Refueled you… you looked at me with those eyes and it felt like… it felt like old times. It felt like… it felt like we rediscovered each other. And when, when you chose me, I had this feeling of… uneasiness… of… of uncertainty… but also one of joy and exuberance.
I got excited at the possibility of what we could be once again.
And… and I know it took a lot out of you.
It took a lot for you to trust me again.
Because before, well… I didn’t respect you for what you were. I didn’t respect you for what you could be. What we could be.
America hung his head.
Christopher America: I took you for granted.
I expected you to elevate me and to make me better. That somehow, you were just going to imbue me with the power to just turn away competitor after competitor. Matches would be won… easily. My opponents would be the best wrestlers on the planet. And I would finally get what I have been seeking for so long.
For so, so long.
America took another deep breath as felt a small sense of relief at finally having said the words out loud.
Christopher America: But it never came, right?
You knew I wasn’t ready.
Not the first time. Not the next and… I don’t know… maybe you don’t feel I’m ready for it even now. But I have to believe that each time, I’m showing you that I am learning. That I am growing. That I am becoming better for you and because of you.
You know… I… I look around this company and I see things that the others have… and I’m jealous.
And I’m angry.
Trust me when I say that I DO take comfort in you. I ease my jealousy and anger just by having you. Just by holding you in my arms. But there are times, if I’m being honest, that I want more.
I want that legacy.
And I’m sorry if I’m getting impatient about it.
Now, I have… I have done everything you have asked, haven’t I? I listened to you and I put down everyone before me. I willingly subscribed and STILL DO to the fact that my legacy is built through your legacy.
America paused as he attempted to gingerly approach the subject.
Christopher America: But what if you’re gone?
What if you’re not there anymore?
What if, come War Games, you choose someone else?
Is that… is that just it for me?
I feel like the day that you’re not there is the day that I’m not in HOW. It’s the day that my legacy is destroyed. And I’m left right back where I was before I came back. Just a… miserable fucking guy with no friends… no family… wasting his days away.
America sighed heavily. He listened to the rumbling of the hotel’s air conditioner as it attempted to pump more cold air into the room.
Christopher America: I feel him, you know.
I feel him drawing ever closer and I… I know my time is coming soon. I’m not going to be like Jatt Starr or Bobbinette Carey or Chris Kostoff. I don’t want to be an aging Hall of Famer who knows that their time has past. I don’t want to hang around just collecting a paycheck. I want to be up there. I want to be considered one of the best there’s ever been. I want to be one of the greatest that HOW has ever had. I want to be on the Mount Rushmore.
And I’m fighting like hell to get there.
But I’m having to fight against Chris Kostoff and his legendary battles against Lee Best. I’m having to fight against Mike Best, both his lineage and his accomplishments. I mean, fuck, a TEN TIME World Champion. I’m having to battle against the likes of Max Kael, who’s deeds in the ring rival his deeds outside of the ring. I mean, just think! The things he’s done to Shane Reynolds, The Best Family, and others. I fight against the owner of this company who took this company from the streets of Chicago to the beaches of Normandy to the battlefields of Ukraine and back again.
I… I have to compete with all of that!
And when I know that… that my time here is… is… being counted down by some force of nature that I can’t conquer or control, it just pisses me off! I guess I hoped and expected that by holding you, I could do it. I could stop time. I could stay there… comfortably… blissfully… in the moments that exist between two ticks of a clock.
But I can’t.
Each victory slows time.
Each victory is another moment.
But they’re just that.
Not lifetimes. Not eternities. Just moments.
America looked at the championship as if she were speaking to him.
Christopher America: I know… I know.
I know it’s stupid. I know I ask and expect the impossible.
But, I feel like if I don’t, I won’t know what’s achievable.
I don’t want my legacy to be conquered. That’s why I don’t want my legacy to be solely dictated by how long this reign was. Because someone, somewhere, they’ll do it. Maybe not now. Maybe not in the next decade. But they will. Eventually. By Tyler, should he return. By Ward. By Byrd. By Ryan. Whomever.
Everything falls in time.
Christopher America: Everything falls to time.
You know it’s funny. Years ago, I never imagined any of the people I work with having kids. And yet, there are multiple people on this roster that have kids of their own. Kostoff’s kid is here now. I have stood in the ring with three different generations of Best Family members. I mean, those are legacies.
And in some ways, I’m sure those parents hope and pray that their offspring will outlive them and succeed where they failed. And maybe they will. Maybe they won’t.
But I don’t have that chance.
I don’t have a son or a daughter to hang my further hopes and dreams on. And I feel like… I feel like my time for that has passed.
That I’m the… I’m the last of the Americas.
America grew silent as the words stayed with him. The realization fully sinking in.
Christopher America: I want my legacy to be defined by you AND me. Together. That we took on the world. That we achieved what people thought was impossible. That we went for over 300 days in a single reign. We looped the pay-per-view calendar year. We turned away gods and monsters. We stepped on the bugs and the worms. We shared memories… that… that I am going to cherish until the day I die.
I want my legacy to be defined by War Games. And HOFC. And my battles with Mike and Solex. From the AoA to the Best Alliance and back again. I want my downfalls… the… the enslavement by Cavanaugh… the near defeat by Azula… even the loss to Bob Jared of all people. I want ALL of that to be weighed and measured by the hands of fate and still… STILL… people point at me and talk about it for years to come.
I want people to point to my career and accomplishments as something that inspired them.
Because I… I NEED a legacy. I NEED THIS. I NEED War Games to be my legacy! I need this reign to be my legacy! I need my battles… my wars… my words… my actions… all of it! I NEED ALL OF IT!
And I… I find myself frustrated because as much as I want a legacy, I also want to keep you forever.
And… if the only amount of time… that I will accept… to prove that my reign is worthwhile… is “forever”, then how do I intend to even have a legacy if my reign lasts forever?
It has to end somewhere, right?
Because even if no wrestler stops me, time eventually will.
So, I need your help.
One last time.
Let’s do it.
Let’s do the impossible.
Let’s achieve what everyone says can’t be done.
Let’s complete the cycle. Let’s go coast to coast. War Games THROUGH War Games.
And become the greatest of all time.
Because I don’t want it any other way.
I’m going to peel back the curtain for the final time.
I’m pissed off right now.
And it’s not for the reasons that you might think.
You see, each wrestling company has a perceived hierarchy. There’s the people that are finding their way, there are those that have steady performance, and there are those that seemingly dominate from the onset. Fans on their shitty little message boards have clever names like main eventers and curtain jerkers. And those labels, they piss me off. And they piss me off because it suggests that each wrestler is stuck into fitting into a particular category. A nice and neat little box so that their puny minds can grasp and understand what they are watching.
No room for the gray. No room for the nuance.
But that’s the fans, right?
That’s not us.
That’s not you… right?
No, see, while the fans may try to group us in boxes where we usually wind up on the card, we as wrestlers place ourselves into different categories. And the worst of those categories are the ones that you fuckfaces come up with for War Games.
Don’t believe me? Then let me lay it out for you.
First and foremost are the ones that are down on their luck, stuck in their feelings, walking around moping, sad at the prospect of what War Games presents for them. They don’t expect to win the HOW World Championship. Instead, they decide that they are going to do something else in the match. And so you may be wondering, what SPECIFIC game plan do they have walking into War Games… and you know what their answer is?
I’m going to do my best to raise some hell.
I’m going to try to create some CHAOS.
I’m going to try to do what I can.
That may be one of the shittiest mentalities I’ve ever heard. If you’re in fucking War Games, you better make sure that you have your eyes on the prizes. The championship belts. And above EVERY SINGLE OTHER CHAMPIONSHIP BELT is the HOW World Championship.
Not a championship. THE CHAMPIONSHIP.
Fuck that bullshit, lackadaisical attitude.
Fuck you, Zack Kostoff. Fuck you, Brian Hollywood. Fuck you, Darin Zion. Fuck you Bobbinette Carey.
That’s not giving your all. That’s not putting everything you have on the line. That’s a pathetic excuse you tell yourself so that when you walk out of War Games with ABSOLUTELY NOTHING you won’t feel bad about yourself. The truth is, though, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You don’t do much because the fans don’t expect you to do much. The boys and girls in the back don’t expect you to do much either. And the reason we don’t expect you to do much is because of the lack of effort shown here… NOW… for this match!
And this goes for the other championship holders.
I understand you want to keep your championship. I understand the need to try to do everything you can to keep your ladies. But my lady, she’s far and way above yours. She’s the pinnacle of this business. Telling yourself that your focus is on your championship is just as fucking pathetic. Why settle for one, when you can go for two? Or three?
It just means that you want to do good enough to retain your championship but piss poor enough that you want to forget the World Championship.
Get the fuck out of here with that.
No. More specifically. Fuck you, Jace. Fuck you for that mentality.
DO WHAT I DID! Win two titles on the same fucking night. Retain your championship and COME AFTER MINE!
The second category of people are the ones that delude themselves into thinking that War Games is going to be their coming out party. That somehow, after months and years of piss poor performances, you’re going to fucking pull a rabbit out of the sombrero and shock the world. News flash for the Scott Stevens and the Scottywoods of the world. It isn’t happening. And do you know why?
Simply look at your track record in War Games.
And before you even open your mouth Stevens. Look…at…YOUR…track record. NOT YOUR TEAM’S… YOUR INDIVIDUAL TRACK RECORD.
You don’t win them.
You barely last in them.
You spend more time trying to prove your toughness to people that won’t set foot in War Games… than those actually in War Games. So go ahead, talk yourself up big to the interviewers, to the fans, to faceless security people, doctors, mystics, deities, or even your own fucking families. It won’t change the fact that you are not walking away with the HOW World Championship. You’ll walk in the same way that you’re walking out. A sad, pathetic, lonely, empty-handed, empty-headed, charisma vacuum. So, fuck you. Fuck your Toxic Stings and your Game Misconducts. Fuck your beer drinking. Fuck your endless losing streak. Fuck you turning over in submission to Mike Best for HOFC like the dogs you are.
The third category are the people that want the World Championship… but for the wrong reasons. They think that this championship is going to somehow validate themselves and finally push them over the top. Even worse are the ones that want the World Championship not because they want to do anything with it. They only want it because they think it will hurt me or it will hurt the Final Alliance.
Is that what you think being World Champion is?
Do you think the HOW World Championship is about sticking it to Christopher America? Or even to Lee Best?
If so… then fuck you, too.
Fuck you for how you degrade this championship. Fuck you for degrading her legacy. Fuck you for degrading those that came before me. Those that put their hearts and souls and energy and EVERYTHING into this championship. EVERYTHING you don’t. EVERYTHING you wish you could give but you’re not able to or you’re too scared to. EVERYTHING they gave EVERYDAY that you want only ONE TIME A YEAR.
Fuck you to the Xander Azulas, Joe Bergmans, Conor Fuses and Clay Byrds of the world. Xander wouldn’t know what to do with the title if he got it. Bergman would lose it after one defense like he always does and then retreat to another part of the world, probably to find a way to latch on to Ted Lasso this time around. Conor Fuse held the title for over 150 days and he did NOTHING to elevate her like I have in the conditions that I’ve had to. He spent more time talking about his video games than he did the championship he held. In fact, I’m pretty sure Conor’s busy talking about Tears of the Kingdom more than this championship. And Clay Byrd, well, he’s probably telling himself for the umpteenth time how this is finally going to be the last time he loses. Just like how the loss to Ward and me was the last time. And ICONIC was the last time before that. And so on… and so on…
And the fourth category is for those of us that care. The members of the Alliance. Members of my own team. Even the Un-American ones.
We are the mighty.
We are the worthy.
None of us deserve her.
We are simply the chosen.
Chosen by Lee. Chosen by her. To be avatars, soldiers, and champions. Chosen to carry out their will and shape this business into what is needed for the next generation and the next. And the next generation will be inspired by and aspire to be like me, a hardened patriot who did the impossible. An eagle owner who carved out his name and his legacy in the War Games cage. A man who clothes himself in the flag after doing some of the most unspeakable things… in the name of freedom.
You want Christopher America in War Games?
You’re not getting him.
You don’t deserve him.
You’re going to get something else.
I burn inside with an anger and a rage and a hate for all of you that are unworthy. I will make you cry out for the sweet release of death inside that cage. I will make you scream in pain and terror. The sort of pain and terror that makes you wish you could leave this very existence behind. A pain and terror that will course through your body in such a manner that your body will contort and convulse. Your muscles will tear. Your bones will bend and break. Your blood vessels will burst.
You’ll scream so loudly that you’ll be frothing blood at the mouth as your vocal cords give out in submission to me.
I’m going to cull this roster.
I’m going to injure and maim you all so that Lee Best will be left with no choice but to trim this roster of the fat, bloated, dead weight Hall of Famers coasting.
He’ll dispatch with the recently signed new hires who think that War Games is just another match, just another event, just another opportunity. Not realizing that it is THE match, THE event, THE opportunity. Perhaps the one and only opportunity they get at the HOW World Championship.
And for those that are left…
Those that are worthy…
You will fight against me. Not Christopher America, no.
You will fight the real devil of War Games. You will fight HOW’s greatest War Games competitor.
And it’s not Lee Best you have to conquer.
It’s not the Alliance.
It’s ALWAYS been me!
And if by luck, or happenstance, or coincidence, or simply because she chose you… you will have to live up to what I’ve done… what I’ve accomplished. Because I’ve shown you what a single opportunity can do for someone like me. I can barely fathom what such an opportunity means to the lot of you.
This match is all about completing the cycle.
I want… I need… I hunger to conquer the last remaining hill…
I need to win War Games again.
To defend the title inside the cage.
To complete ONE… FULL… YEAR… as champion.
AND I WILL GET what I’ve longed for. I WILL GET what I deserve.
The one thing no one can take from me.