You’ve either pissed someone off or begged like Keith Sweat to be given the start to your HOW career that you’ve had. First Jatt Starr and then, ME? You’ve drawn the two biggest Icons in this industry. Two Hall of Famers who have won it all and are still capable of winning championships and carrying this company on their back. You’ve been given a great honour, to be honest with you. There’s a lot of guys, and gals I guess, who would give their right arm to have the opportunities you’ve been given so early on. If nothing else, you can look back at your wrestling career, one day, and smile as you remember the time you had the honour and privilege to share the ring with an artist like me.
But you’ve been set up to fail.
For you? This match is a yardstick to measure yourself against. You’ve already fallen to Jatt and now you’re about to get the Gold Standard. I never gave myself that name, Lee did. You know why? Because when it comes to being the whole package I am the bar that he measures everyone against. I am that good. When I’m at the top of my game I am the greatest. The fucking GOAT. There isn’t a World champion, past or present, who hasn’t felt their nerves staring at my name next to theirs on a match card. Your excitement is understandable, but it is also naive. It’s clear that you’re not tucking your tail and running, and instead trying to learn from your loss and move forward. I’ve lost count of the amount of flakes who have walked through that curtain, eaten their first loss and fucked off back to smaller company’s with fisher price titles and plastic Hall of Fame rings.
But you’re moving onto ME! I feel I need to make that clear because you’re not going to bounce back. No, instead I’ll give you the best wrestling lesson you’ve ever had in your life. A little bit of fear wouldn’t go amiss. If you come at me pumped up to the eyeballs with an all or nothing attitude then I will have you in the palm of my hand. I control that ring. I dictate every aspect of it. I’m going to twist you into shapes not even your favourite porn stars have managed to get themselves into. I’m going to push your pain threshold to its limit. Most importantly? I’m going to test your resolve. You will learn more about yourself from a loss to me than you have ever learned over your entire, shitty, career.
This match is a Tune up!
Lee has given me the honour of demoralising Eric Dane at Rumble at the Rock and putting him out of his misery once and for all. But you see, I haven’t had a singles match in well over a year. I need someone to shake the rust off against. And that, Mi amigo, happens to be you.
A perfect fool? Please. Don’t think I’m taking you lightly, I’m not. Seasoned vet, remember? I’ve learned from my mistakes in the past and taken all the hard lessons the ring has ever given me. I’ve taken people for granted far too many times and come unstuck.
Hi Isaac Slade..
You got a lot of heart to pick yourself up and dust yourself off like you did, talking all that shit to me to get yourself amped up. But who are you trying to convince? Me? Or yourself?
You will get the respect you deserve as a competitor. I’m not ignorant. I know any man can win on his day. But Saturday will not be that day for you. You gave Jatt a good match. But if you think you’re going to ‘bounce back?’ And score a victory over one of the greatest World and Icon champions of all time, then you’re high off your own ass, Pappa. This isn’t your break out moment. This won’t be your redemption song. This isn’t the match that shoots you into the path of relevance. This isn’t going to be a Saturday night, feel good, moment for the you and the five fans who actually know who the fuck you are. This is all about John, Fucking, Sektor returning to singles action and dusting off the cobwebs against HOW’s newest curtain jerker. This is the part of your career where you pay your do’s by giving me the opportunity to sharpen my claws and oil the gears.
On Saturday night you will be playing the role of a less talented Eric Dane and I will hit you hard. You’ll be doing me a favour. A nice little test to tell me where I’m at and what I need to do before I head to Alcatraz and do some business with the ‘Lonely Star.’ You will find out what a sadistic, and ruthless, piece of shit John Sektor really is. Look what I did to Kostoff. The most respected and oldest vet that ever graced the, HOW, squared circle. I put him on the shelf, probably for good. No professional courtesy. No sentiment for a friendship we once had. No respect and certainly, no remorse!
You think you know me? You don’t fucking know me. You haven’t got the faintest clue who I am or what I’m capable of. No amount of dusty, retro, VHS tapes can teach you what I’m about. You can sit in your black-light man cave all day and all night, drinking G-Fuel, watching my old matches and you’d still be a mile off the pace. I’m in a league of my own.
But after Saturday night?
You will know John Sektor!
JATT STARR: Enough..(gasping)..Time..time out!
Jatt makes the letter ‘T’ with his hands, gasping heavily as he plants them on his knees and doubles over. By his side is his partner, John Sektor, who is also adopting the same position and hoovering up the ‘Windy City’ air into his lungs. Both men are drenched in sweat, wearing matching, grey, “StarrSek Industries” t-shirts that how now turned a gun metal shade from the buckets of sweat that have emptied from every pour. Sektor and Jatt had no interest in having pin up bodies again. All they want is to get themselves in the best shape possible. Both men look weathered, truly showing their age, which is still only considered young for a professional wrestler. However, being away from the ring as long as they had caused the muscles to tighten, joints to seize up and all the wear and tear over the years of being bounced off a wooden canvas, dropped on your head and stretched into unnatural positions to rear their head.
‘Sid’s Yard’ is the name given to a converted warehouse on an old industrial site in Chicago. It’s owned by Sid, believe it or not, who is a personal trainer hired by HOW’s hottest duo. He prides himself on maximising his clients physical conditioning with a combination of circuit training and impact exercise to result in optimised cardiovascular fitness. He had been putting Sektor and Jatt through hell the entire morning, forcing them to drag huge wagon tires, do laps of the yard carrying weights, perform sit ups, press ups, burpee’s, lunges, jumping jacks, russian twists, planking…the list is endless.
SID: Guys! Come on..
Sid, with his chiseled and flawless physique, stands opposite them looking disappointed as he plant’s his hands on his hips like a drill instructor. He’s mid twenties, with a blonde slicked up style haircut that matches our World champions merosexual look. His muscle vest looks as though it’s been spray painted onto his body as you can literally count every ab, not a single bit of fat. His crystal blue eyes glisten with their youth as he seems to take personal pleasure in the hurt he has instilled upon his clients.They’re currently inside the warehouse which has been laid out with various equipment and weights to form a circuit. It has that rustic feel to it, dirty and old to remind them that they’re there to get their hands dirty.
SID: This isn’t the time to rest! You come to my yard you fucking, WORK! Now MOVE!
As he barks his instructions at them, Jatt looks at Sektor with pleading eyes and begins to whisper.
JATT STARR: Sek, I think I’m going to die. Please make it stop..
Jatt literally looks as though he could cry any minute and Sektor isn’t looking too clever either. His skin has turned a waxy grey as his blood stream is filled with lactate. Both men look dangerous close to suffering a serious coronary event. A pain burns in Sektor’s chest, which he can only hope is caused by the lack of oxygen in that area, which happens to house his major organs. The duo had been on the receiving end of true beasting, and it is clear they still have some ways to go.
This will be nothing compared to the walls of pain he will have to push through when he goes to war with Eric Dane at Rumble at the Rock, and perhaps even Kevin Capone this Saturday. Strength, speed, heart, skill, experience? They all mean nothing if your body cannot do what you want it to do.
SEKTOR: Sid, we need a minute, okay?
The Gold Standard has to pause for breath which has an audible, droning, wheeze to it.
SEKTOR: My heart is going to burst out of my chest and we’ve been at this for hours.
SID: Hey, this is what you signed up for. Do you wanna be in peak physical condition or not?
SEKTOR: I do, but I’m still in my forties and out of fucking shape! Plus, I’m the one paying you so If I say we need a minute, then we need fucking minute.
Sid rolls his crystal blue eyes and lets out a sigh.
SID: You got five minutes!
With that, he turns and heads towards the large open doors of the warehouse. Jatt calls after him, holding up a trembling thumb.
JATT STARR: YOU ARE THE MAN, SID!
As the personal trainer heads out of ear shot, Jatt quickly snaps his head in the direction of his partner.
JATT STARR: That man is a sadist!
The word sadist gurgles out of the back of his throat.
SEKTOR: I know…I know..I’m dying too!
JATT STARR: We should fire him, like, right now!
Sektor smirks, still too out of breath to let out an audible laugh so instead his upper abdomen just shakes a little.
SEKTOR: Quit being so soft. This is what we need!
Jatt clenches his eyes tight, again looking like he could cry. Sektor begins to walk towards a bench at the side of the warehouse and Jatt follows. Both men walk as though they’ve just been brutally sodomised as every muscle in their body burns and aches in a torturous manner.
JATT STARR: You’re gonna have to explain this to me, Ke-mo Sah-Bee..I’m all on board with getting fit, but this? This is too much, even for the Jatt-I Knight! I don’t even have a freaking match this week!
Sektor is too busy trying to regulate his breathing to respond immediately. As they reach the bench, the Technical Wrestling Machine picks up two bottles of water and tosses one to Jatt, who of course fails to catch it. His eyes well up as he looks down at the bottle, realising that he will have to go through the agony of reaching down to retrieve it. With a grimace of agony Sektor sits himself down on the bench, pouring water into his mouth and then all over his head which is beaming with heat.
SEKTOR: If the past few weeks has taught us anything? It’s that you and I are in terrible shape.
Jatt glances down at his gut and starts aggressively tapping it, happy that there is no belly “jiggling”.
SEKTOR: The only reason I didn’t blow up in our tag match was because I was able to rest regularly in the corner. And on Saturday, you looked a little grey at times against Capone..
Jatt waves a hand dismissively.
JATT STARR: Bah, I barely broke a sweat..
With a bemused smirk Sektor raises an eyebrow at his partner, analysing his expression to see if he is joking.
SEKTOR: Jatt, the mother fucker almost had you at one point..
Jatt’s back straightens up as he takes exception to that statement, but he feels a twinge in his lower portion, forcing him to nurse it with his right hand and grimace.
JATT STARR: Poppy-cock and hogwarts! Nearly…NEARLY had me…The only reason he got near me was because of that mooncalf, Connor Fuse. You try staying focussed when some little weirdo is twirling his thumbs on a game remote whilst you..
SEKTOR: Look! All I’m saying is that we’ve been getting by because of our vast experience and knowledge. But inevitably our bodies are going to catch up to us and we’ll come unstuck. I know for a fact that I wont be at my best against Kevin Capone. Not even close. Which is why I am grateful that Lee has given me this, tune up, match to shake off the rust. I’ll get the win, but I’ll probably stink out the ring. But that’s fine, better to do it now than at Rumble at the Rock where performances really count. But unless we do something about it, now? Unless I can trust my body? I won’t stand a chance against Eric Dane, as much as I hate to admit it. And I cannot let Lee Down. Plus..
Sektor smacks the back of his hand off Jatt’s shoulder, waking him up as he still dwells on Sektor’s analysis of his last match.
SEKTOR: ..you and I have the tag titles to look forward to. HOW needs us to carry those belts and I want to make sure that everything is perfect when that time comes. We WILL rule this company once again, Jatt. We just have to go through this grind. Face it buddy, we’ve gotten lazy.
Jatt nods, knowing that Sektor speaks the truth. While Sektor takes another drink of water, Jatt starts to chew his bottom lip as he contemplates discussing something with his partner that he knows will likely invoke a negative reaction. Sektor notices the conflict in his expression out of the corner of his eye, removing the bottle from his lips with a gasp and wiping the residue off of ‘Slick Daddy.’
SEKTOR: Out with it!
The Sultan of SeaJattle’s eyes shoot to his teammates, taking a deep breath as he prepares for what he is about to say.
JATT STARR: You and I are best friends now, right? Soul Brothers? Bosom Buddies? Compadre’s? MEJORES AMIGOS!
He shouts, extending his arms for dramatic effect while Sektor just raises a curious brow, wondering where he is going with this. Jatt then stands up, burning with passion as he continues.
JATT STARR: We’re like Romy and Michelle. Thelma and Louise. Blair and Serena. Tootie and Natalie.
SEKTOR: Why are all these examples women?
Jatt pauses, his eyes looking up to the right corners to activate some more creativity.
JATT STARR: Okay, we’re like Woody and BUZZ! Spock and Kirk..Han and Chewy…Butch and Sundance…Wallace and Gromit…
With a roll of the eyes Sektor rolls his hand to signal Jatt to ‘wrap it up,’ stopping his never ending list of famous, on screen, best friends.
JATT STARR: And….Sam and Dean Winchester. They’re not just best friends, they’re brothers.
SEKTOR: Fine, we’re best friends, what’s your fucking point? And please, for the love of Christ don’t get all mushy on me again like that time you got all teary eyed over that fishbowl we shared in that cocktail lounge..
Jatt smiles softly, slipping down closely next to the Gold Standard and draping a sweaty arm around Sektor’s equally saturated shoulders. Sektor shifts uneasily, never one to enjoy physical contact, especially from another man.
JATT STARR: Thing is, buddy, you’re right. If we do want to get back to our best then we have to be in great physical shape. But we also have to get this..
He says, tapping Sektors forehead.
JATT STARR: ..and this..in the right shape too!
He continues, this time planting a firm hand, palm first on the centre mass of Sektor’s chest. Sektor, quickly, bat’s Jatts hand away with a spark of aggression.
SEKTOR: The fuck are you talking about, Jatt?
JATT STARR: John, as best friends we have to look after one another’s emotional and psychological well being too..
Sektor shakes his head rapidly, showing complete denial to that notion.
SEKTOR: No we don’t! We just get hammered together and score chicks and talk about sports! None of this sissy shit Jatt, I fucking mean it!
There’s an awkward silence shared by the two as Jatt smiles at him, trying to look like a supportive friend but instead giving Sektor the creeps.
JATT STARR: John, we need to talk about her..
Sektor’s teeth and jaw clench as a firm finger raises up to Jatt’s face.
Jatt continues to smile softly, closing his eyes and shaking his head slowly like one of those guidance counselors that’s over friendly and thinks he knows what you want to hear.
JATT STARR: We need to talk about Chloe..
Sektor leaps up as a surge of adrenaline, fueled by sheer anger, rifles through his veins. He even kicks the open bottle of water across the warehouse.
SEKTOR: God-DAMNIT, JATT! Did you not get the hint last time?
Sektor glares at his friend, cocking his head to the side as he grimaces with wrath.
SEKTOR: I don’t want to talk about her. I don’t want to hear about her and most of all? I dont want to fucking THINK about her. You know why? Because when I think about her? It makes me sad! And I DO NOT have time to be sad right now.
With his teeth clenched together, the Gold Standard rags a hand through his greasy black hair and pants heavily. His tone changes as he continues to speak. Quieter now, more controlled and monotone, a hint of sadness textured into it.
SEKTOR: The Minister has her, now. That’s the end of it. She has nothing to do with me and I have nothing to do with her. It’s best for both of our sakes that it stays that way.
Jatt is completely perplexed by this notion, shaking his head as though to clear the mist of confusion in his mind.
JATT STARR: Screw that nonsense, my daughter ran out on me to be with her mother who was supposedly dead for six years! You know where your daughter is and I’m sorry, but I fail to see how being under the care of Max Kael can be what’s best for any child?
Sektor’s eyes close, his expression softening as he tries to desperately keep a lid of the bottle of emotion he keeps locked away deep within him.
SEKTOR: She’s no child any more. Besides, any damage he’s done is no more than I have over the years. So please, I’ll ask you one last time, as my friend? Just let sleeping dogs lie, okay?
Jatt smiles softly and walks over to his partner, placing a reassuring hand on his shoulder.
JATT STARR: Alright, buddy…but remember sleeping dogs wake up and poop in your yard.
SID: Erm, you pansies need another minute or you ready to get back to work?
They hadn’t noticed the personal trainer return to the warehouse. Sektor shoots Jatt a look and shrugs his hand off his shoulder, raising his chin to Sid and giving him the nod.
SEKTOR: We’re ready!