This is just the way it goes now. I’m at the bottom of the totem pole. I’m placed into handicap matches with the fuckin’ world champion against Darin fuckin’ Zion. Unbelievable. But it’s not like I shouldn’t have seen this coming. I mean, I’ve lost every match I’ve had in recent memory, and I’m still on the downslope. Losing to Darin Zion…or is it Darin Matthews? I have no fuckin’ idea anymore. One minute he’s this, the next he’s that. Not fuckin’ surprising really, I mean…his best friend is fuckin’ Brian Hollywood. But I can’t be all high and mighty about that either…I’ve lost to Brian Hollywood a number of times this year and last, and what the fuck have I learned from that? Absolutely nothing. I’m supposed to be an Alpha Male, a War Dog, a fuckin’ war hero…but I’m not…I’m fuckin’ worthless at this point. But that’s why Shawn Kutter is here. He’s here to fix me. He doesn’t know it yet, but he is. I’m not Steve Solex anymore. I’m no longer the number one dad, the soldier, or the fuckin’ dad-soldier. I just AM.
He peeks over the top of his book and sends a wink in my direction. Normally, an act like this would piss me right the fuck off. But with Kutter, things are different. I know what he’s doing, and I know that I need him more than I’ve ever needed anybody. I tell him to knock that shit off, but the tone in my voice is more playful than I intended. He throws up a middle finger and tells me to “fuck all the way off” and calls me a little bitch before dropping the finger and securing his book once more.
Kutter reads quite often, but it’s not the type of shit that you’d think. Right now he’s reading The Case for Christ. A book about an atheist who is also a journalist, and is trying to disprove his wife’s new found face in God. Kutter doesn’t know how it ends, but I do. Strobel – the author – can’t seem to disprove his case against Christ, and suddenly is faced with the realization that he believes in Christ and God. I don’t know whether or not Shawn knows how this book ends…but I’m now busy making a Case for Kutter.
Shawn isn’t like any other person I’ve met. He’s tough, smart, witty and unafraid. Lately, I’m none of those things. I’m weak, unintelligent, lost and afraid. But Shawn is here to fix me….and I hope the process is quick.
He drops the books to his lap and laughs out loud. “Only you would recommend a book like this to someone, you dipshit,” he half-shouts at me from across the room. “You know,” he continues. “I don’t think you have one shot at beating this Zion douchebag at all, not even in a three-on-one handicap match. Not even with the HOW World Fuckin’ Champion in your corner. You’re just incapable at this point, Steve. You’re not the man you once were, no matter how hard you try and pretend.” I hold my head down low, those words cut deep. But not in a bad way…I don’t feel worse about myself, I only become more self-aware. Kutter has a prickyness about him, but he’s right. I’m a shell of the man I used to be…I know that shit. I tell him to fuck off in a tone that can be perceived as a joke, but deep down…I don’t mean it at all.
“You know, Steve. If you lose to Zion, Lee Best will have your ass for sure. This will be the end of your time in the Best Alliance, and likely the end of your time in HOW. You’ve lost more matches than you’ve one…you’ve become the Scott Stevens of 2021.” This motherfucker is really starting to get under my skin. I tell him to knock it the fuck off, but he continues. “I really don’t even understand why you stick around anymore. You’re a has been in all of professional wrestling, but in HOW…you’re a never was.” He’s right you know. I hate to admit that, but he’s one-hundred percent right. I haven’t done shit since I’ve come to HOW, however many years ago that was. I should have stayed where I was, but Lee Best has that way of convincing you to follow him into battle while you suffer the consequences of his decisions. I don’t mean that…I’m just making excuses at this point. Lee Best has had my back since day one, and I’ve done nothing but let him down time after time. Darin Zion is better than me right now, I need to learn to accept that. No matter how many times I say it to myself, it still hurts: I’m not the man that I used to be. I’m not the motivated, dedicated, can’t stop won’t stop motherfucker in charge that I used to be. Someone motivate me. Please. I’m begging.
Shawn Kutter will be the one to do it…but I don’t know if I’ll like the process. Kutter stands up and walks at a fast pace across the room and gets eye to eye with me. “Sit the fuck down,” he says, in a tone I haven’t heard since I was six years old and my dad was pulling his belt free from his size 32 waist Levi’s. I comply, but not because I’m scared. But because I need to earn Shawn’s trust, I need to show him that I am indeed trainable and worth fixing. But as soon as my ass hits the fake leather, I question my decision. And I was right to.
“What the fuck, man? You sit down when I tell you to? Just like that? What the fuck is wrong with you?” I don’t know, I tell him. My voice trembles as I tell him why I saw down so immediately, but he sees right through me. “You sat down cause you’re a bitch and Darin Zion knows you’re a bitch, no matter what your Best Alliance buddy’s think.”
“You will lose to Darin Zion. Whether or not you get pinned, it doesn’t matter. He will beat you. You will lose.”