::::SCENE: Las Vegas. Home of bright neon lights promoting gambling and “GIRLS! GIRLS! GIRLS!” Their flight landed at the Harry Reid International Airport two hours ago. Dan Ryan, in a rare gesture of good faith, brought Jatt Starr to the home of Elvis Impersonators in hopes to build some trust and chemistry for their upcoming match against the Alabama Gang.
The Ruler of Jattlantis remained skeptical of Danaconda’s would be “good intentions” but the second a free trip to Sin City was on the table, he knew there was a Wayne Newton show he had to score tickets to, Danke Schoen very much. They arrived at their hotel at around 6:15 and went to their separate hotel rooms amid the chingling and clanging and the bleeps and bloops of the slot machines in the lobby.
The hotel was nice, not exactly the Bellagio but still quite elegant and luxurious. The Mayor of ManJattan’s room was spacious with enough room for eight people. The bedroom revealed a circular bed with a red velvet bedspread. The bedroom oozed tackiness to the point where he wondered how many adult movies were filmed there. The adjacent bathroom was massive containing a shower, a hot tub, and three sinks. Why would he need three sinks? He was not complaining but this hotel room was, for a lack of a better word, hedonistic. Not a word commonly associated with the Jattlantic City Idol.
After cleaning himself up and putting on his best red and black checkered suit, black dress shirt, and black and red checkered bow tie, he went down to the lobby and waited for his tag team partner.
Dan Ryan kept the Starrson City Icon waiting for nearly twenty minutes.
8:00 PM Pacific Time, the night Jatt Starr would unlikely remember would begin.
When the Duke of Jattmandu woke up the next morning in a hotel room that was not his own, he attempted to piece together the evening. Here is what he could remember…..
He and Dan Ryan had dinner at a nearby restaurant that apparently doubled as a dance club called “Steak Et Danse”. It pretty much outlines the whole experience right there in the title. Dan Ryan ordered the ribeye whilst Jatt Starr ordered the Mahi-Mahi over ravioli. Of course, Dan Ryan would chastise the HOW Hall of Famer for committing the cardinal sin of ordering a fish dish at a steakhouse. You would have thought Jatt Starr slandered his daughter (yes, the same daughter Jatt Starr believes was set up by Joe Bergman and PRIME management. Sure, he could tell Dan Ryan he has the eighth best private investigation firm in Albuquerque looking into the matter, but he does not wish to get his hopes up that physical evidence would be found).
Over dinner they began to strategize over cocktails (for Dan Ryan it was alcoholic, for the Earl of GlouStarr, it was shrimp). They agreed that when they arrived back in Chicago in a couple of days, they would succumb to their more masochistic impulses and carve out some time to watch the Alabama Gang take on the Stevens Dynasty. Dan Ryan would bring the refreshments and Jatt Starr would bring the barf bags (his intention being to take as many of them off the plane as he can carry).
By the time the salad course arrived, the conversation devolved into a debate of which member of the Alabama Gang is more inbred.
Jatt Starr made a compelling argument that R.G. Jenkins does not come from a family tree but a family shrub.
Dan Ryan retorted that Mark Hendry does not have a gene pool but a gene puddle.
The Thane of Starrkarth conceded that point but also mentioned that R.G.’s mother was also his sister.
Dan Ryan responded by stating that Mark Hendry is his own uncle.
A fair point, to be sure. However, the Grand Overlord of Jatturn could not help but state that R.G.’s initials stand for Redneck Genepool. This escalated into a number of different uses for “R.G.” —
Considering the animosity the Saviour of Starrkham had against Dan the Man, he was having a good time. There were laughs. He felt they were bonding especially considering they did not say one word to each other on the plane nor in the Uber ride to the hotel. There was one item that bugged the Rembrandt of Wrestling.
After Dan Ryan’s fourth whiskey, the Sheriff of Jattingham had to tell himself that he was not doing it on purpose. Maybe Danny Boy did not know Jatt was an alcoholic. Maybe he did not know how much alcoholics struggle to remain on the wagon. But then again, maybe he does know and does not give a rat’s rectum about the Champion of Jattanooga’s struggles. There was conflict raging within his mind — Is Dan Ryan an insensitive prick? Is he just a clueless clod? Is it a little bit of both?
The truth is, no matter how he feels about Dan Ryan, as fate would have it, the Hero of Jattlanta is bound to him by way of the HOTV Tag Team Championship. Lee Best wants them to get along and, for most part, they have been. The Starrabian Knight let go of his anger from “War Games” 2021. Hell, aside from him, who really remembers that match? Sutler Kael won it and who gives a flip about him? He is old news like Chris Jacobs, Splinter, and Halitosis.
And yet, Dan Ryan did something unexpected. He acknowledged that if it were not for the Jatti Master holding Joe Bergman back, he might not have become the HOTv Champion. Jatt Starr chooses to hold onto that comment and this guy’s trip.
Besides, Lee Best wants this group to work and, by gum, Jatt Starr intends to make it work.
Talk turned towards the evil that is Joe Bergman and how the Alabama Gang are essentially just his muscle. Dimwitted henchman who happened to luck into the HOTv Tag Team Titles. Well, either luck or via nefarious means be it bribery, corruption, steroids, or mind control. In any case, it boggles both their minds how they managed it. It did not sit right.
It was during a particularly involved theory about how Joe Bergman obtained Max Kael’s time machine and continually traveled back in time making very slight changes in the HOTv Championship match at PWA-01. Did Joe Bergman somehow drug Scott Stevens? Or, perhaps, according to the Ruler of Jattlantis, Joe Bergman and Ray McAvay conspired to pay off Jace Parker Davidson. Why else would he have left Scott Stevens to get pinned and call off STRONKETTE from interfering? Clearly Lee Best had found out about this malicious deception and, in justified retaliation, stabbed the backstabbing windbag right in the eye. It was the only explanation that made any lick of sense.
It was at this point that Dan Ryan downed his fourth whiskey, probably starting to tune his tag team partner out (or maybe it was the louder than it needed to be music coming from the dance floor upstairs – “Rasputin” by Boney M), he happened to turn his head towards the bar and noticed something almost inconceivable. There was an attractive woman looking over in the general vicinity of the man that once referred to himself as “The Professor of Sparrowdynamics”. After all, it was he who pointed this anomaly out to the Sovereign of Starrgentina.
As he laid motionless in the plush, unfamiliar bed, his head pounding as if there were a thousand jackhammers chiseling away at his cranium all at once, the Sultan of SeaJattle was able to recall his exchange with Dan Ryan.::::
DAN RYAN: I think that woman is staring at you.
::::Dan Ryan nudged his head towards the bar, the Ruler of Jattlantis glanced over and, sure enough, there was a slender blonde woman wearing a red sequined top standing between three other non-descript women (at least non-descript to Jatt Starr since he was not focused on them).::::
JATT STARR: She’s not staring at me.
DAN RYAN: She totally is.
JATT STARR: She’s staring through me at someone else.
DAN RYAN: Who?
:::::The Duke of Jattmandu probably would not have remembered which gentleman he had pointed out to his tag team partner if not for the rather portly gentleman’s rather unusual t-shirt which said “I Don’t Sweat Fat Chicks, They Do It For Me”. Jatt Starr could not remember the man’s face but he most definitely remembered the t-shirt.::::
JATT STARR: Him?
DAN RYAN: That guy?! Get the hell outta here! That dude looks like he watch MVW, got depressed at how awful it was and binge ate until he realized he, like Mark Hendry’s father-uncle, can only wash his back with his “washin’” stick. No way she’s looking at Sloth-Boy.
JATT STARR: In case you did not know, I am in a serious relationship with Heidi Vaccarelli, star of “Bikini Chainsaw Car Wash”.
DAN RYAN: Do you even like this chick or do you just enjoy saying you’re dating a B-movie actress.
JATT STARR: Screw you.
DAN RYAN: Seriously, when was the last time you saw her?
JATT STARR: Maybe seen her once in seven months?
DAN RYAN: Go on. Look, she’s still looking. Buy her a drink.
JATT STARR: I do not drink. I am an alcoholic.
DAN RYAN: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Off the soapbox. It’s not for you, it’s for her.
JATT STARR: You did not hire a prostitute and set this whole thing up thinking I am desperate for passengers on the Starrlite Sexpress, did you?
DAN RYAN: Oh God no! The thought of you….and someone else….doing sex things…it’s gross.
JATT STARR: Thank you. I am dripping with confidence now.
DAN RYAN: Just do it! Come on!
JATT STARR: What if Joe Bergman hired a prost—-
DAN RYAN: Quit stalling and go!
::::And go he did and here is where it gets a little foggy. The Thane of Starrkarth remembers walking towards the bar, smoothing his suit jacket. He remembered thinking that Dan Ryan was right, it had been some time since Heidi had responded to his voicemails. Two weeks, maybe three. He had chalked it up to time differences between New Zealand and the United States, maybe she was busy shooting another episode of whatever show for which she had been signed. At the very least, he would get the satisfaction of proving Dan Ryan wrong. Sure, he’s the muscle and many believe him to be the talent in the ring. Just one little dig is all Jatt Starr was looking for. Unfortunately, that was not to be because the woman was eyeing him as he approached, she was smiling as he approached. There was something oddly familiar about her but he was positive he had never met her before.
He sidled up the bar in an attempt to look cool but ended up looking like John Wayne was suffering from a bad sciatica and a steel rod shoved up his rectal cavity. He remembered smiling and nodding at the woman. In the dim lighting of the restaurant-bar portion of the establishment, she appeared to be in her mid-to-late thirties, maybe slightly older as the wrinkles in her eyes became more pronounced as she flashed a wide grin at him. The opening exchange was pretty vivid in the Jattinum Standard’s mind before it just stops like “The Sopranos” series finale.::::::
WOMAN: This is a surprise!
JATT STARR: Yeah!
::::The Jattlantic City Idol vaguely recalled nodding in agreement even though he had no idea what this lady, this very attractive lady, was talking about.::::
WOMAN: This is serendipitous.
JATT STARR: Yeah! Seren-what-you-said!
::::The Rembrandt of Wrestling has a recollection of the woman grabbing his arm, digging her fingers into his arm, looking at him with wide, excited eyes.:::::
WOMAN: Do you believe in fate?
JATT STARR: I….uh….
WOMAN: It’s weird, super weird! I was supposed to meet some friends here. I ran into one but she got hosed pretty early, I think she’s in the bathroom.
JATT STARR: Um, okay?
WOMAN: I was thinking about you the other day and—-
JATT STARR: Me?
WOMAN: Of course, Simon! I was thinking to myself, will we actually meet in person but I wasn’t sure because the divorce is so new, but then I was thinking we, my husband and me, have been separated for over a year, and this whole dating thing has changed. Have you tried these dating apps? It’s humiliating. It’s like you’re trying to pick out a date the same way you would pick out a Kindle on Amazon.
JATT STARR: Wow! That’s fascinating. And crappy. Fascinatingly crappy.
::::The Woman clearly knew him. Part of him thought this was a massive set up, set in motion by the Alabama Gang, if they had a brain between them. No, it would have been Joe Bergman’s doing. But there was something familiar. Maybe the eyes? The facial features? One thing was for sure, she knew him.:::::
JATT STARR: Can I get you a drink?
WOMAN: I don’t drink! I thought I told you that.
JATT STARR: Oh! Yeah! Duh! I forgot! It has been a WEEK.
WOMAN: We haven’t told our kids about the divorce yet.
JATT STARR: We do not have to drink alcohol. I am sure they have some non-alcoholic beverages….
WOMAN: We just figured it would be easier that way.
JATT STARR: …milk…uh, soda….maybe they have sparkling cider….
WOMAN: But I always enjoyed our little chats especially during the separation.
JATT STARR: They were enjoyable for me too….
::::At that point, it would have been downright offensive to say he had no idea who she was. A friend of Heidi’s? A friend of Gilda’s? A friend of Lee’s? Well, definitely not Lee. Lee Best doesn’t have any friends. Their moment is then interrupted by one of the Woman’s friends, if Jatt’s memory serves, it was Lola or Mona or something. She was loud, drunk, and had a high pitched nasally voice with a Bostonian accent that made Jatt Starr want to sharpen a Number Two pencil and stab himself in the ear with it.::::
LOLA/MONA: AHHHHHH!!!!! THEEAH SHE IS!!!!
::::That was when both women began screaming and he was relatively certain Lola/Mona said the woman’s name and he could not hear it. It did not help that the establishment’s management decided to crank up “What is Love” by Haddaway on the bar speakers. After they had a brief conversation about how Kelly, Linda, and Shantel were on the way, the Woman offered a brief introduction.:::::
LOLA/MONA: WE’AH GONNA GET PISSED!!!
JATT STARR: No, thanks! I’m—-
WOMAN: No, I shouldn’t , I haven’t had a—-
LOLA/MONA: Aw hell no! You ah officially a free woman! Tonight’s about gettin’ frickin’ crazy!
JATT STARR: I got a friend over—-
LOLA/MONA: You ahen’t goin’ anywhere, hun. Nawt without one drink.
::::And then it happened, Lola/Mona said the last thing he would remember for the rest of the evening.::::
LOLA/MONA: BAHTENDAH!!! THREE SHAWTS!!!! FUCKIN’ WHISKEY!
::::Eight thirty the following morning, the Ruler of Jattlantis awakened feeling as miserable as he had ever felt in his life. For a moment, he thought he was in his hotel room. This room, much like his own, was on the pricier side as it had it’s own bedroom and adjoining bathroom. This room, as opposed to his own, looked less porny. A wave of panic washed over him as he tried to figure out what happened.
Blacking out is not a good thing. The last time Jatt Starr blacked out like this, he woke up naked in a dumpster. He hoped today would not end with him in the hospital getting a series of shots for any potential disease or infection a night in a dumpster may have given him.
There was a bottled juice smoothie (pineapple, banana, and coconut water) next to the bed on the nightstand with a note.
“Went for a run. Didn’t want to wake you. Love, N”
Who the hell is “N”? What the hell happened?
Jatt Starr grabbed the smoothie and twisted the cap off, the clicky sound of the seal breaking was music to his ears. He proceeded to down the smoothie in one lengthy chug-a-lug-a-lug. He placed the empty back on the nightstand and realized that he was naked. For a brief moment, he forgot about the brain splitting headache and smirked. He got lucky last night. Unfortunately, the details escape him.
Somehow, “Here Comes the Rain Again” by the Eurythmics was going off in his head. And images of someone that may or may not have been Wayne Newton. Did he see Mr. Las Vegas last night, after all? Would he have sung a Eurythmics song? Did they open for him? Should he get dressed and get out of there?
Jatt Starr picked up his clothes and quickly put on his pants. He grabbed his phone which was in his suit jacket pocket and quickly called Dan Ryan who picked up on the third ring.:::::
DAN RYAN: Where have you been, man? I’ve been waiting at the gym for twenty minutes.
JATT STARR: What the heck happened last night???
DAN RYAN: Hell if I know. I saw you hanging out with a bunch of cougars and I was out.
JATT STARR: You LEFT ME?????
DAN RYAN: You looked like you were having fun.
JATT STARR: You are NOT supposed to abandon your partner! Those are not the actions of a Tag Team Champion.
DAN RYAN: Did you get laid last night?
JATT STARR: I am pretty sure I did.
DAN RYAN: You’re welcome. Now get down here.
JATT STARR: No, you don’t under—
::::BOOP! Dan Ryan disconnected his line. Jatt Starr shook his head and resisted the urge to throw his phone against the wall. The Hero of Jattlanta put on his t-shirt and as he picked up his bowtie that was strewn on the floor, the door opened. The Woman, “N”, entered wearing jogging pants and a tight black running top, her blonde hair pulled back in a tight ponytail. Jatt Starr froze for a moment as he tried to figure out what to do. Ultimately, he dropped his clothes onto the floor and crawled back into the bed. “N” came into the bedroom, saw Jatt Starr, and gave a genuine smile. Glistening with sweat, she crawled on top of the bed, slowly, like a stalking cat and placed her lips on his, kissing him.::::
“N”: You okay?
JATT STARR: What? Yeah! Totally.
“N”: Are you having second thoughts?
JATT STARR: About?
“N”: Last night.
JATT STARR: What? No, of course not. I would not have had it any other way.
:::::”N” smiled, flashing her perfectly aligned pearly whites and kissed Jatt again before retreating off of the bed and entering the bathroom, closing the door behind her.::::
“N”: You just can’t plan for everything in life, eh? There’s this vegan bistro down the street, I was thinking maybe we would go out for a late breakfast followed by a couples massage after?
JATT STARR: I have to meet Dan, we have this match this weekend. It is a pretty big deal, Tag Team Championship so—-
“N”: I can’t believe it! Married!
:::::”N” let out an excited scream as she turned on the shower. Jatt, however, began to tie his shoes until the words soaked into his brain.::::
JATT STARR: I know…wait….what—what was that last part?
::::”N” pops her head out of the bathroom.::::
“N”: We probably don’t want to tell Tyler or Conor about this, at least not yet.
::::The pieces of the puzzle began to fall into place and the Marquis of MadagaStarr’s jaw dropped. He grabbed his phone and started fumbling through it. Sure enough, there it is, a photo of “N” and Jatt Starr in front of a Wayne Newton impersonator. Another photo showed them holding up what he can only assume is a wedding license, and another rather explicit photo of them making out on the hood of a sports car, maybe a Corvette, the picture does not specifically indicate the make or model.
And then he saw it. A stainless steel wedding band on the bedside table. He picked it up and noticed the “Wayne Newton-Wed Chapel” engraving on the inner band.
With the overwhelming evidence in front of him, he accepted the fact that he was now married to Conor Fuse’s mother. Conor Fuse’s ridiculously hot mother. Conor Fuse’s impossibly hot mother whom he had nothing more than an occasional texting relationship with.::::
JATT STARR: Hoooooooooooooooo-leeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee shit.
::::Jatt Starr went through a whirlwind of emotions – confusion, shock, excitement, fear. What would Dan Ryan think? What would Lee Best think? Could it negatively impact his career? How long could it last? How doomed is this marriage? Is this the HOW gods rewarding his loyalty? Should he text Dan Ryan and get some advice? What about the Alabama Gang? All he needed was a sign.::::
“N” (yelling from the bathroom over the running shower): You could join me!
::::That was all he needed. Fuck the Alabama Gang and fuck Dan Ryan. The Sultan of SeaJattle popped up from the bed, ignoring any evidence of a hangover, and hurriedly got undressed on his way to the bathroom to continue his (hopefully NSFW) honeymoon with his new bride. However, before he entered the bathroom, he peeked at the ID card on her suitcase next to the window confirming what he did not already know. Natalie! HER NAME IS NATALIE!!!!:::::