:::SCENE: St. Ignatius Catholic Church located approximately seven miles from Jatt Starr’s abode and bunker. The large, heavy wooden doors swing open and the HOW Tag Team Champion and HOW Hall of Famer, Jatt Starr enters. Jatt is sporting a charcoal gray hooded sweater and tan jeans, both of which were on sale at Old Navy. Behind him, looming large, is Hugo Scorpio, who is wearing his Indianapolis Colts knitted cap with the blue and white pom-pom, a black hoodie over a black and green checkered flannel shirt. Over Hugo’s shoulder is a red Santa sack that reads toys.
Jatt Starr removes his purple fingerless mitts as he takes in the ambiance of the church. The faint aroma of myrrh, frankincense, and benzoin still lingers in the air. The red carpet, which has likely not been changed since the mid-90’s, shows some scuffing and dried discolored stains. To the left of them there is a room adorned with candles. Some are lit. Ahead of them are three pairs of wooden double doors, not quite as large as the entrance, which lead to the nave. The nave contains six rows of pews containing about twenty-five pews per row. There are three rows to the left and three rows to the right of the main aisle leading to the altar.
A man in his early-to-mid thirties wearing a light blue dress shirt and black dress pants shaking the hand of one elderly parishioner. He has reddish brown hair, a perfectly trimmed beard, and dark brown eyes, the right one seemingly looking more to the left than the other. As the elderly woman leaves, the man approaches the Sultan of SeaJattle.:::
MAN: Welcome. I don’t recall seeing you two here before. I’m Dave, I’m a deacon here.
JATT STARR: I’ve been here before.
DAVE: I think I’d remember you. I’d definitely remember him.
::::Deacon Dave points to Hugo Scorpio.::::
JATT STARR: I went to AA here.
DAVE: I meant in service.
JATT STARR: Me and God, if we were Facebook friends, our status would show a strained relationship.
DAVE: “It’s Complicated”?
JATT STARR: It always is, my man.
::::Jatt Starr pats, nay, slaps Deacon Dave on the arm in a somewhat brotherly way, but with enough force that the wiry church employee nearly falls down.::::
JATT STARR: I believe I need to drop these toys off to Father Stephen…?
DAVE: Oh, Fathers Steve and Conrad are both offering confession right now and the Monsignor is in a meeting with another donor.
JATT STARR: So, what, do we just hand them to kids or drop them off with you, how does this work?
VOICE: As I live and breathe, do I hear the chirping of a Sparrow?
DAVE: Here’s our other donor.
::::Jatt Starr turns and, standing in the doorway (being flanked by two men carrying cameras), is a man, looking younger than his driver’s license would have you believe, good looking in a Hollywood star sort of way, piercing blue eyes, a smooth, tan complexion, and his jet black hair is crewcut with some length at the top. He is sporting an outfit that cost more than the Baron of Boca Jatton’s monthly salary (before taxes). A Fendi sweater with a black and tan zig zag print, khakis, and brown crocodile leather loafers. The King of Grapple from the Big Apple immediately turns back.::::
JATT STARR: Ah fuck-udge.
JATT STARR: My former college roommate. A real phony. Don’t give him any ammo.
::::Jatt Starr turns back and smiles, extending his arm to shake his former roomie’s hand. Bryce prompt ignores it but gives Jatt a wink and turns his attention to the Deacon.::::
JATT STARR: Bryce! How are you?
BRYCE: Simon, hold on. David, a word?
::::Bryce Markinson, in one of dozens dismissive power moves he has executed against the HOW Classic, dismisses him and begins talking to Deacon Dave off to the side. Bryce, Princeton alum, shared a room with Simon Sparrow for a semester and a half. He was born into money due to some adhesive his grandfather invested in forever ago and he still has money today due to some sound investments. As fate would have it, Bryce Markinson purchased a large piece of land in Montana about eight miles from Jatt Starr.
Jatt Starr feels flush in face and feels himself sweating underneath the large red and white coat. So few people have seen Jatt Starr at his absolute lowest. Bryce is one of those people. When they first reconnected, the Marquis of MadagaStarr was drinking more socially, shortly thereafter, he hit the bottle hard. Some mistakes were made. Some humiliations suffered.::::
HUGO: He seems nice.
JATT STARR: He’s a prick-elly fellow. He always finds a way to take a little backhanded jab at me.
HUGO: Don’t worry boss. I got your back.
JATT STARR: Just don’t say anything. I get enough of this condescending bullcrap from Lindsay Troy and Steve Harrison, I don’t need it now.
::::Bryce proceeds to shake the Deacon’s hand and then walks over to Jatt Starr, flashing his pearly whites like a used car salesman on a little old lady who wouldn’t know a carburetor from a key fob.:::
BRYCE: Simon, I have not seen you in ages. Or are we calling you, what? Matt? Matt Starr?
JATT STARR: Jatt. It’s, um, JATT Starr.
::::Bryce lets out an amused, high pitched “HA!” while placing his right hand over his heart. Jatt Starr, on the other hand, looks like he would rather has his face clawed off by a feral cat.::::
BRYCE: How perfectly odd!
JATT STARR: Thanks.
BRYCE: Missy and I are having a little holiday charity gala tomorrow night. Oh, wait. There will be alcohol. Forget I said anything, I know it’s been quite the struggle for you.
HUGO: I’ll have you know, that Jatt hasn’t struggled with anything! He’s drinking at least twice a week.
::::Hugo provides a satisfied nod towards Bryce as Jatt Starr closes his eyes and drops his head in disbelief. Bryce’s lips curling back into a serpentlike smirk.:::
BRYCE: Fell off the wagon, Simon? Oh no! Missy will just have a fit! An absolute fit! I feel terrible, just terrible for you. I should have guessed you were in another inebriated scuffle. I do hope there were no ice sculptures involved this time.
JATT STARR: This is nothing. Don’t worry about it.
::::The Jatti Master looks behind Bryce towards the photographers standing behind him. Bryce turns back to see what Jatt is looking at and then turns back to the Thane of Starrkarth.::::
BRYCE: It is such a burden, I am here doing my part for the children and these media vultures follow me looking to get their story. Consider yourself fortunate that you do not suffer the same level of scrutiny as I.
JATT STARR: I didn’t say anything.
BRYCE: Are you here to drop off some toys for the parish? Do you mind if I have an eensey-weensey peek inside your bag?
JATT STARR: Actually, I would mind—
HUGO: Go ahead!
JATT STARR (to Hugo): What are you doing?
:::Bryce pulls open the canvas bag gingerly with his left index finger and peeks in from a distance as if the bag was contaminated with the bubonic plague. Meanwhile, Jatt Starr is shooting daggers with eyes at Hugo, who looks increasingly uncomfortable as each second passes.::::
BRYCE: Hm. Stuffed toys. We got the children Switches, but I am absolutely CERTAIN that the children will enjoy your……trinkets as well.
::::The pompous tone and attitude of Bryce is starting to grate on the Champion of Jattanooga’s last nerve. Each word out his mouth becomes an icepick that pierces the Jattagonian Giant’s eardrum and into his brain. But he must remain calm. He folds his clenched fists across his chest.::::
BRYCE: Oh, Simon. Are you seeing anyone?
HUGO: He’s happily single!
BRYCE: That’s joyous news. I am so sorry that things did not work out between you and Penelope.
JATT STARR: It’s perfectly alright. It was over four years ago, you don’t have to keep bringing it up.
:::The Sultan of SeaJattle attempts to disguise the simmering violent rage behind his eyes with an empty smile. The HOW Hall of Famer feels himself starting to shake. He reminds himself where he is at. Bryce does not seem to notice.::::
BRYCE: Misty will continue to tirelessly find someone for you but all the women we had asked since prefer their balls in pairs. Oh! I must be running along. I have another stop to make. The Women’s Shelter, we are providing them with designer clothes. That Missy cannot keep clothes for more than one season. Arrivederci!
::::Bryce struts off, the photographers follow him out the door. A burst of cold air enters the foyer from the outside. Jatt Starr, desperate to release his repressed rage, grabs Hugo by the shirt, and pulls him down to his level.::::
JATT STARR: Are you stupid or something? I told you not to say a word.
HUGO: I thought I was helping.
::::Realizing where he is, the Earl of GlouStarr releases Hugo and looks over to the door, seething with rage.::::
HUGO: He took a massive dump on your head and you let him walk out of here.
JATT STARR: I went on one date with that inbred, socialite Penelope and the next thing I know, the one testicle jokes start.
HUGO: I’ve seen you kick guys’ asses for doing a lot less than that.
::::The Jattagonian Giant, looking as stone cold serious as The Terminator, turns towards his disfigured employee.:::
JATT STARR: An LSD Champion does not spill blood in a church.
HUGO: You have more willpower than me. That’s for sure.
JATT STARR: I’m an HOW Tag Team Champion, for heaven’s sake. Do something with these toys.
::::Jatt Starr leaves Hugo with the sack of toys and enters the nave. The anger he is feeling right now is sticking with him, puncturing his stomach. There are a handful of people either kneeling behind or sitting at the pews. On opposite sides of the church there is a confessional. Both shine red light indicating its occupancy. There is line of four people to the confessional on the left and a line of two people for the one on the right.
Stained glass windows are lined on either side depicting the story of the birth of Christ with small pictures in between depicting the stages of his death and resurrection.
The Ruler of Jattlantis sits down in the center of the pew in the second to last row which is adjacent to the confessionals. He has spent the last week in an almost constant state of anger. Sitting down, looking at the decorated twelve foot Christmas tree to the left of the altar, the wreaths hanging on the walls, he hopes to temporarily temper his feelings. Thoughts go to his father, a devout Catholic who—-
“Psst”. He looks around and notices a blonde haired little girl wearing two different shoes, sitting about seven feet from him to his right. She is pointing at her left eye and then points to Jatt. For the briefest of moments, a chill runs down his spine as he ponders whether or not this is some creepy kid who has the ability see directly into his mind a la “The Village of the Damned”.
He tries to ignore her, but she attempts to garner his attention with a louder “Psst!”::::
JATT STARR (whispering): What?
LITTLE GIRL: How’d ya get the shiner?
JATT STARR (whispering): The “shiner”?
::::He notices the little girl has a bit of a black eye of her own over three healed scars going vertical from her left eye. She has a red splotch on her right cheek almost in a “V” like shape. Jatt Starr assumes it’s either a birthmark of some kind or this kid is really messy with the fruit punch.::::
JATT STARR: I ran into a snowglobe being wielded by a giant Norseman named Lars.
LITTLE GIRL: I don’t believe you.
JATT STARR: I don’t blame you.
::::The little girl inches closer to about six feet. The Saviour of Starrkham, looks around, confused, seeking out this child’s parent or legal guardian.::::
JATT STARR: You shouldn’t talk to strangers.
LITTLE GIRL: My mom says nothing bad happens in a church, it’s where God watches us the most.
JATT STARR: I think your mom is making a lot of assumptions. Where is she?
LITTLE GIRL: My mom?
JATT STARR: Yeah.
LITTLE GIRL: She’s in there.
::::The Little Girl throws her thumb backwards over towards the confessional as if she were an umpire calling a runner out. A thought occurs to Jatt Starr, the evidence, after all, is overwhelming when put together into a narrative that he is forming.::::
JATT STARR: Did your mom do that to you?
LITTLE GIRL: No. Molly did.
JATT STARR: Who’s Molly?
:::The Little Girl looks down at her lap, a sad, melancholic look on her face.:::
LITTLE GIRL: A girl in my class. She was making fun of me, I told her to stop—-
JATT STARR: What was she saying?
LITTLE GIRL: She said I should ask Santa for a new face.
JATT STARR: I hope you popped her in the mouth.
LITTLE GIRL: No, she laughed at me and told me she could do and say whatever she wanted and hit me in the face.
JATT STARR: And then you got up and popped her in the mouth.
LITTLE GIRL: No. I got up and ran out, crying while they laughed at me.
:::The Mayor of ManJattan scowls like the Grinch on Christmas Eve. Something about this little girl being treated like a freak does nothing to lessen his fury.::::
JATT STARR: What’s this girl’s name again, the one that hit you?
LITTLE GIRL: Molly.
JATT STARR: It sounds like Molly is a real bitch.
LITTLE GIRL (leaning in and whispering): I don’t think you’re allowed to say that word in here.
JATT STARR: Molly’s last name isn’t Harrison or Troy, is it?
LITTLE GIRL: No.
JATT STARR: Oh. What about Freeman?
LITTLE GIRL: No. Why?
JATT STARR: Don’t worry about it. Did you tell anyone about what Molly did? Your mother? Father? A teacher?
LITTLE GIRL: No.
JATT STARR: Good girl. Always respect the rules of the playground. Especially number one: Snitches get stitches.
::::The Little Girl looks down. It becomes as clear as crystal that perhaps that was not the best thing to say to this kid. Jatt Starr feels a twinge of guilt.::::
JATT STARR: What’s your name, kid?
LITTLE GIRL: Lucy. Lucy Dahlqvist. What’s yours?
JATT STARR: Simon. But people call me Jatt Starr.
LUCY: That’s weird.
JATT STARR: I’m a wrestler, so I needed a name with pizzazz.
LUCY: I don’t see it.
JATT STARR: Lucy, can I let you in on a little secret?
JATT STARR: A lot of people think that I’m a big joke too.
LUCY: I’m not surprised.
::::Jatt Starr is unprepared for this statement from the little girl, all he can do is blink. Finally, he is able to muster a question.:::
JATT STARR: What makes you say that?
LUCY: You have a black eye and you call yourself “Jatt Starr”.
JATT STARR: Kiddo, you should see the other guy.
LUCY: My mom says violence never solves anything.
JATT STARR: Not according to the Code of the LSD Champion.
LUCY: What’s that?
JATT STARR: If someone gives you a black eye, you break their nose. If someone breaks your nose, you break their legs. If someone breaks your legs, you cripple them.
LUCY: I don’t think that’s very nice.
JATT STARR: Lucy, people are going to shit on your head and expect you to thank them for the hat. The Mollys, the Steve Harrisons, the Lindsay Troys of the world, they treat people like total crap and expect to get rewarded for it. And guess what? Sometimes, the universe is unfair and they get everything they want. Meanwhile, people like you and me, we’re looked down on like we’re plebeians.
LUCY: What’s a plebeian?
JATT STARR: It’s a nice word for vulgar, lowlife scum. It’s up to people like us to bring them down a few pegs. What we have going for us, is the fact that we’re a joke to them. They completely dismiss us. That means they underestimate us. The next time this Molly bitch makes fun of you, you ask her “Can I ask you a question?” and before she can answer, you grab her by the hair, yank it back, and karate chop her in the throat. Trust me, she will drop like a sack of potatoes and leave you alone.
LUCY: I don’t know….
JATT STARR: Okay, well, maybe for you, it’s best to wait for her to hit you first and then you throat punch her. You can claim self defense.
:::Lucy nods and looks at her mismatched shoes as she considers Jatt’s advice. Finally, she looks up at him.::::
LUCY: Are you waiting for confession?
JATT STARR: What? No. LSD Champions don’t seek absolution for kicking ass. It’s part of the job.
LUCY: You seem angry.
JATT STARR: That’s because I am angry. I am an HOW Hall of Famer. Yeah, people underestimate me, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. Underdog, my ass. I should be widely respected and not mocked and ridiculed by the likes of an arrogant, spoiled, barren hag like Lindsay Troy, who by the way, is in a relationship with a self-centered muck-spout that gets his jollies by stabbing people’s wives in the eye with a pen and get away with it. Don’t think for one second that she’s not as self-entitled as he is, she might even be worse. I seriously want to pound her perfect little nose so far into her face, she sneezes gray matter.
::::Jatt Starr, his brow is furrowed, his voice cracking on the verge of erupting into a rage filled rant, his stomach is churning. He looks over at Lucy who looks at him, with her big brown eyes.::::
LUCY: You must really hate her.
JATT STARR: You have no idea.
LUCY: I get so mad at Molly that I wanna scream. But I don’t wanna disappoint my mom.
JATT STARR: What about your father?
LUCY: I’ve never met him.
::::The Jattlantic City Idol looks at Lucy and cannot help but think of Gilda at her age, growing up the way she did, in a compound with no one to look after her except for her mother. The choices her mother made, which can be described as dubious at best.:::
JATT STARR: That sucks, Lucy. Speaking of your mother, what is taking her so long?
:::Jatt Starr looks over at the confessional door which still has a red glowing light. The line has grown to seven people.::::
LUCY: She’s usually in there for a while.
JATT STARR: I’m going to be straight with you. I’ve been dealing with a lot of resentment and anger within myself lately. A lot of it has been building for years. A lot of rage, kid. A lot of aggression that needs an outlet. Next week, I can let it all out. I can let it all go in an eruption of savagery and brutality that no one has ever seen from me before. I’m talking about a massive bloodbath here.
You got moxie, Lucy. I am telling you, if you continue to let this Molly bitch continue to dump on you, I assure you, she won’t be the last….and one day, you’ll wake up a lonely middle aged alcoholic with such repressed feelings, no one will want anything to do with you except a seventy year old John Sektor. Bleak, I know. Now is the time to assert your dominance over her. Be the Alpha Bitch.
LUCY: I’ll be the Alpha B-word.
JATT STARR: LSD Champions don’t eat brussel sprouts and they don’t take shit from condescending bitches, got it?
LUCY: Got it.
JATT STARR: Kiddo? Remember to aim for the throat. Or the mouth. Mess up her smile a little bit.
::::The Sultan of SeaJattle stands up and looks down at the little girl and gives her thumbs up.:::
JATT STARR: See you around, kid.
LUCY: Will you?
JATT STARR: If I win the LSD Championship, I’ll be around.
JATT STARR: An LSD Champion always keeps his promises.
::::Jatt Starr stands up and walks out from the pew into the aisle. He looks back at Lucy looking at her mismatched shoes and then at the confessional door where the red light is still illuminated. He exits the nave and enters the foyer where Hugo Scorpio stands, bagless.::::
HUGO: You okay, boss?
JATT STARR: We are going to make it rain blood and viscera at “ICONIC”, Hugo. But first, you have two jobs to do. There’s a little blonde girl back there named Lucy with a messed up face, she has a red mark on it, some scars. Give her a Jatt Starr-Sektor plush.
HUGO: I’ve already given it to the Deacon. Isn’t it like, stealing from a church?
JATT STARR: Take it back. She gets a plush, got it?
HUGO: Yeah boss.
JATT STARR: Next, call Sid. I want a one-on-one session. Tell him I want the most painful regiment possible. There is no way I am leaving ICONIC without that belt.
HUGO: Got it.
::::Hugo walks off to retrieve the plush for Lucy as Jatt Starr opens the door and is hit with the frigid Montana cold. His breath visibly escapes his mouth as he witnesses Bryce Fucking Markinson standing on the sidewalk, now wearing an overcoat, talking to another rich phony wearing a similar overcoat. Just another entitled, arrogant bitch like Lindsay Troy. Just another sleazy, ninnyhammer like Steve Harrison. Just another reason to be pissed.
Fuck him and his gala.
And while we’re at it…..
Fuck Steve Harrison and his Miracles.
Fuck Hughie Freeman for no other reason than the misfortune of being in the match.
Fuck Lindsay Troy and her bullshit family living on 1159 Bullshit Street in Nobody Cares USA.
Part of the Hero of Jattanta wants to walk over, punch that smug asshole’s face over and over until it becomes a hideous, deformed mess that will require no less than a dozen plastic surgeons to reconstruct it. He desperately wants to send a message not to sleep on him. But he tells himself to wait. LSD Champion are patient when they need to be. No, he needs to hold on to the pain and wrath he is feeling, just one more week.
The Ruler of Jattlantis knows, in order for him to win this match, needs to carry as much agony, rage, indignities endured, and rage as he can muster. He must permit himself to be ENRAGED. He’s got to be carnage incarnate. “Starrnage, is that a good nickname?” he wonders. No, it’s not. He continues to stand in front of the double doors of the church, glaring spears at the personification of his ICONIC opponents, Bryce, as the scene comes to an end. END SCENE:::::