It was 2016
I had left HOW for what I thought were greener pastures in 4CW. However in September of that year I was in a PPV match with a chance at the 4CW World Championship given to the winner at the very next PPV. However it would be Scott Stevens who pushed my then wife Tara and I off the top of the steel structure. In pure instinct I grabbed Tara and shielded her from the damage as we crashed through the announcers table below.
I wrestled one more match against Stevens getting revenge but of course I wasn’t right. Roll to the beginning of the year 2017 and I was on the shelf with a career ending neck injury. My marriage was over because Tara cheated on me with another 4CW wrestler and tried to pass the baby off as mine. I had practically lost everything that I cared about. I drove around aimlessly until I found a church. The parking lot was empty as I stepped out of the vehicle and took in the sight of the building.
I was far from the religious type.
Yet here I was in my neck brace from my fusion surgery heading up the stairs and pulling open the large oak doors of the church. The inside was empty and quiet as the moonlight shined in through the stained glass windows. The pews were lined up neatly and polished to perfection. Candles were lit inside which illuminated the stage of and the large cross that hung on the wall behind it. I walked down the aisle and slid into one of the pews a few rounds back from the stage.
I couldn’t have felt more out of place but it was either this or drown my sorrows in cheap liquor and I had done quite a bit of that lately. My career was over, my marriage was through and I had no idea where I was supposed to go from here. I could always go crawling back to the Indy circuit to see if my name alone was enough to get me a gig as a backstage interviewer or a commentator but was that really all I had to look forward to? Watching other people do what I loved for a living?
I was lost.
I needed guidance.
I was looking for a miracle.
However I would find no miracle on this night. I would spend the next five years at home away from my ex wife, away from professional wrestling. It was the most miserable period of time in my life. No amount of praying, no amount of church visits, or good deeds would change that. I learned an important lesson in those five years and that lesson was simple.
Miracles don’t exist.
It was a typical hospital room that I was waiting back inside of back here in Miami, Florida. I left Atlanta as soon as I possibly could after the grueling battle I waged with Rah but in the end I managed to retain my HOW HOTv Championship belt. Now I was seated on the examination chair with my legs hanging off the edge. I had my shirt off and my midsection was taped up.
However, that wasn’t the reason for today’s visit. Since I had been back wrestling for a couple months now I figured it was time for a follow up with my surgeon to see just how my neck was holding up. I had been taken in for X-rays and now it was just a matter of waiting for doctor Alasfar to come in and give me the verdict on my condition. I hated waiting but this was always the case with doctors. My mind started to drift a bit as I stared down at the HOTv Championship belt laid across my lap.
I started to wonder if this schedule of defending the belt every single week was a smart idea. Especially since I won the belt from Solex I had upped the level of competition for the title. Rah had practically taken me to the limit and now I had to deal with Steve Harrison. If I beat him then who would be next? I also had to think about Bottomline coming up around the corner. I wondered if I would make it there in one piece until a knock on the door was heard before the door slowly opened.
“Good afternoon Mr. Davidson.” Doctor Alasfar walked into the room with a folder in hand. He walked over and shook my hand. “How are you doing today?”
“Well that all depends on what you have to tell me Doc.” I said with a bit of a nervous laugh as I broke the hand shake.
“Let’s get right down to it then, shall we?” Doctor Alasfar made his way over towards the cushioned stool on three wheels and took a seat. He opened the folder in his hands and went over some notes from my previous visits. “So you’re here for a follow up on your neck surgery now that you’ve gone back to professional wrestling, correct?”
I nodded my head. “Yeah I’ve taken everything from clotheslines, to German suplexes. Stunners, DDT’s, powerbombs, and—“ Doctor Alasfar interrupted me.
“Luckily I’m a fan of professional wrestling so I know what you’re talking about.” The doctor chuckled a bit and then cleared his throat. “So basically you’ve been dropped on your head and neck a lot?”
“Yeah and took a fireball to the face.” I said with a sheepish grin as the doctor raised his eyebrow in my direction. “It’s a long story, let’s just say I pissed a guy off pretty badly by almost murdering him so his revenge was a fireball to the face followed by what he calls a McGill bomb.”
“So who did you piss off for that to happen?” The doctor reached into his lab coat pocket and pointed a pen towards my taped up midsection.
“First guy’s idiot friend. I called them all carny bullshit parodies and it didn’t sit well. He tried to beat me for the belt here by powerbombing me from inside of the ring all the way down to the concrete on the floor.” I rubbed my right hand over my right hand as the doctor cringed at the thought of the impact.
“Are your ribs broken?” Doctor Alasfar asked as he adjusted his glasses on the bridge of his nose.
“I hope not but you got the final say on that one.” I sighed and took in a deep breath as Doctor Alasfar nodded his head.
“Let’s take a look.” The doctor reached up and grabbed a hold of his badge and swiped it under the scanner to unlock the computer in front of him. A couple of mouse clicks and some typing later my X-rays appeared on screen. “Hmmm consider yourself lucky cause I’m not seeing any breaks or hairline fractures here. I think it’s safe to say that 25 lbs of muscle you’ve put on before returning to the ring certainly helped.”
“That’s good to know but what about the neck?” I asked nervously as my hands gripped the leather strap of the Championship belt across my lap. “I’m kind of worried about it going into my match this coming week in Memphis.”
“Worried? How so?” The doctor inquired as he spun on his stool to look at me.
“I’m defending my title against Steve Harrison this week. He calls himself the Suplex Saint or something like that. It means I’m going to get dumped on my head a lot.” I hated to admit to my surgeon that a guy that was supposed to be my teammate might put me in a wheelchair. “This guy I’m facing purposely goes after the neck and we both know that’s my weak spot.”
The doctor got up from his stool and began feeling my neck and my trapezius area.
“Have you been feeling any pain? Any numbness in your arms or fingers?” Doctor Alasfar asked as he continued to examine me.
“I’m usually in a bit of pain and sore for a day or two after my matches but nothing too serious.” I replied as he continued to poke and prod at my body. “There hasn’t been any numbness in my arms or hands since the surgery.”
“Good.” Doctor Alasfar began to undo the tape around my midsection to examine my back and ribs as I winced in pain every so often. “I would say you severely bruised your ribs but given a few days and some better wrapping you should be good to go Saturday night in Memphis.”
“Okay, but what about the neck Doc?” I said as I twisted and turned my head side to side. “Can it hold up against the attack from a guy like Steve Harrison?”
Doctor Alasfar sat back down on his stool and rolled his way back over to his computer. He stared at the X-rays for a moment before spinning to look at me.
“As a doctor I would never say it’s a good idea to get into the ring with a man that is purposely going to attack your neck and try to drop you on your head.” Doctor Alasfar folded his arms across his chest. “Now as your friend I can say that your neck looks good. You’ve taken a lot of moves in the ring but I’m not seeing damage to your neck or spine.”
“So I don’t have to worry about it against Harrison?” I spouted excitedly.
“You should always worry. You did have major surgery for a reason.” The doctor commanded. “However, it shouldn’t hold you back in your match. Just don’t let the guy completely have his way with you.”
“That’s all I needed to hear.” I grinned from ear to ear.
“Now let’s get you taped up properly and get you out of here.”
Later that afternoon I returned home with my ribs taped up properly. I had my HOTv Championship belt in my left hand and my car keys in my right hand. I closed the door and headed into the living room. I tossed my keys onto the polished glass coffee table and flopped down onto the plush white couch.
The HOTv Championship rested beside me on the couch as I leaned my head back and sighed. I opened my eyes to find Madison dancing across the room wearing a pair of white shorts and a pink tank top. She had her earbuds in and her cellphone in her hand as she sang along to the song she was listening to.
“Heart and Soul, I fell in love with you. Heart and Soul, the way a fool would do.” Madison sang as she gyrated across the carpeted floor.
I grabbed a hold of one of the pillows from the couch and threw it at her. “Not in the mood Maddie!” The pillow bounced off of her butt and she stuck out her tongue at me.
“Where have you been all day?” Madison asked as she took one of the buds out of her ear.
“Went to the doctors to see about my ribs and if my neck would hold up against Steve Harrison!” I groaned as the shouting just made my midsection hurt.
“And?” Was the one word response from Madison.
“I got severely bruised ribs from the powerbomb to the outside last week but other than that I got a clean bill of health and I’m good to go.” I gave a half hearted thumbs up towards Madison.
“That’s cause for celebration!” Madison moved her thumb along her phone screen then started singing and dancing again. “I believe in Miracles, where are you from? You sexy thing, sexy thing you.”
I grabbed another pillow for the couch and chucked it at Madison’s head this time. The pillow connected and knocked the earbuds out of place.
“Hey, what was that for?” Madison complained as she picked her earbuds off the floor.
“It’s like you’re trying to piss me off.” I grumbled as Madison sat her phone and earbuds down on the coffee table by my keys.
“Someone’s in a bad mood. You need a lap dance.” Madison turned her back towards me and straddled herself over my lap but I pushed her away.
“What I NEED is to focus on Steve Harrison and how I’m going to retain the HOW HOTv Championship belt.” Madison was in full pout mode but I ignored it and pointed towards the coffee table. “Make yourself useful and record the promo I’m about to do.”
Madison grabbed her phone and moved to the other side of the coffee table. I grabbed a hold of the HOTv Championship and placed it proudly over my right shoulder. Madison gave me a thumbs up to signal that she was ready to go as I cleared my throat.
“Another week, another big time title defense. Last week I brought the goddamn best out of Rah but it wasn’t enough to take this title away from me. This week I got fellow Best Alliance member the Miracle Man himself Steve Harrison. The forever HOW World Tag Team Champion along with Cool Cancer Jiles. I bet you’re tired of thumping your chest about that since no one has cared about the HOW World Tag Team Championship belts since Ascended Supremacy held them.”
A smirk evolved on my features. Forever Tag Team Champions my ass. I’m one half of the greatest HOW Tag Team Champions of all time.
“And you had your chance to rectify that just a few weeks ago when you were booked in an HOW LSD Championship match against John Sektor. It was a hard fought match where all week you talked about how, win or lose, you would be man enough to shake John Sektors hand after the match. You did just that of course but it wasn’t as the new HOW LSD Champion. No, it was after tapping out and quitting because you were locked in the Sektor Stretch. It was a telling sign that you showed the whole world Harrison, that you lacked a killer instinct.”
I curled my bottom lip as I adjusted the HOTv Championship belt on my right shoulder.
“One has to wonder that if you weren’t so worried about Best Alliance camaraderie that you would have come at Sektor with more than a butt load of roll ups. Certainly you wouldn’t have tapped out to the Sektor Stretch, passed out maybe, but not tapped out. Now coming off of that one would think that you’d be all piss and vinegar just ready to take someone down. Instead you played referee in a match between Clay Byrd and Cancer Jiles. A match where you tried to make yourself the center of attention and even stole Benny’s bottle of Jack afterwards. I mean is this what the great and almighty Steve Harrison is all about?”
I tilted my head to the side in a questioning manner as I thought about it for a moment.
“A thirty-something year old man with Daddy issues? A man more concerned with being the ‘Heart and Soul’ or the so-called glue that keeps the BA together than he is his own career? It would explain why you keep stomping your feet about how you did all the work to capture the HOW World Tag Team Championship belts. From all the way back there in Cancer Jiles’ shadow. It would also explain why you’ve been thumping your chest on the fact that you were the only one to put a blemish on Teddy Palmer’s record until recently. Seriously man, you sound like Darin Zion flapping his gums about beating me weeks ago in a handicapped match. When in fact I’ve moved onto being a Champion and he can’t even remember that Sutler turned down the Best Alliance.”
I raised my left hand into the air in frustration as I leaned forward in my seat a bit.
“Is that what you aspire to be Steve? The Darin Zion of the Best Alliance? I get it though, you’re ‘relearning yourself’ and finding out who you are as a person. In reality you should be finding out who you are as a professional wrestler. You were such a ‘spectacular’ Tag Team Champion that Lee decided the belts were even needed. You tapped out when you had a chance to take out Sektor and become LSD Champion. Fucks sake Steve, Sektor is so proud of making you his bitch that he’s on vacation smacking asses and pissing on people. That’s two strikes against you Steve and now you get your shot against me and the most desired title in HOW. Are you going to step into the batter’s box and put the ball in play or are you going to strike out looking?”
I leaned back in my seat again and crossed my right leg over my left one.
“Let’s be honest. Sutler defending against Zion is going to be a shit show. So that means we’re in the spotlight, Steve. It means that I have to believe you’re going to take this seriously. I have to believe that you’ve developed a killer instinct now that your back is against the wall. I know what you’re capable of inside of the ring and I know you love to throw suplexes. You’re going to come after my neck to soften me up for It’s a Harricle. Great name by the way, did a fifth grader come up with that for you?”
“A Harricle sounds like a testicle.” Madison giggled from the other side of the coffee table.
“Either way even if I try to protect my neck from you Harrison this wrestling every single week defending the title has begun to take its toll on my body. You can take Rah for giving you an alternative soft spot to go after.”
I reached down and lifted up my shirt to show off my taped up midsection before lowering the shirt back down.
“How much more of an advantage do you need Steve? Hell, if you asked the odds makers they would tell you that it would be a Miracle if I retained the title this week. It’s being served up to you on a tee, Steve. You just need to knock it out of the park in Memphis on Saturday. The so-called Miracle Man should finally be able put some legitimacy behind his little moniker. The problem is Steve, I don’t believe in miracles. Not just because you’ve failed to produce a single solitary one. But because you can complain about time in your life lost. I lost five years of my career and it’s not a miracle that I’ve returned. I had to fight, scratch, and claw my way back to being physically fit to get back in the ring.”
I gripped my right hand into a fist and raised it into the air. I extended my index and pointed it at my chest.
“While you’re standing there with your arms spread wide waiting for a miracle to fall from the sky into your lap. I’ll be training to wrestle this match like it’s my last one because it just might be. One Harricle landed the wrong way and that could be it for me and I know this. However trust me when I say you’re going to need to damn near kill me inside of that ring to take this title belt away from me. You’re not the ‘Heart and Soul’ of the Best Alliance, that’s Lee Best. You’re not the Miracle Man. You’re just a big walking, talking, thumb looking motherfucker that thinks that breaking my neck will be enough to stop me. You’re not anything special Steve, you’re just the guy that sits at the table hocking t-shirts while the real wrestlers perform in the ring.”
I got to my feet and slapped my left hand over the gold plate of the HOTv Championship belt.
“You can joke about stocking up on JPD fire extinguishers all you want because trust me, I’ll go out there and light the FedEx Forum a blaze before I give up this title. And after I stomp your head into the match and squash it like a grape, don’t get up and try to shake my hand. Just pack your bags and escort yourself to Chicago to get to work on designing my newest t-shirt.
Miracles don’t exist.
The King of Everything does.
And you’re going to pray that I let you survive.”