The bathroom. In a home, it is the only place where privacy is guaranteed. In the public restrooms in an arena such as the Toyota Center, such solitude should not be expected. So, a pantsless Jatt Starr, standing next to the row of sinks, should not have been surprised when the door swung open and his Co-World Champion, Dan Ryan entered.
The sight of the Jattlantic City Idol scrubbing his black and red pants in the sink caused Dan Ryan to stop, his face expressionless, as if he was processing the image before. Jatt Starr looked up and through the grimy film (and the rather colorful phrase “I Love Rockets in the Ass-tros” in red marker) on the mirror and a smile formed across his face. Yes, making friends has always been a struggle, even as a wee lad in the schoolyard, so when he has a friend, he holds on to them (although, in the back of his mind, there would be that lingering fear that his supposed friend could possibly turn on him, a la Sektor during War Games 2021 and, as he washed his pants, he was still bitter about that). So, as one would do with friends he gave Dan Ryan a friendly nod. A friendly nod that was not reciprocated. A slight etiquette faux pas that the Starrabian Knight would forgive. Instead, Dan Ryan offered up a question, a question incredulous in tone.
DAN RYAN: What is this?!
To someone passing by the still open door to the men’s room in the backstage area of the home to the Houston Rockets, that question could have referred to a multitude of different circumstances that he was witnessing: Jatt Starr cleaning a brown stain on the buttocks of his pants in the men’s room sink. Or the fact that he was not wearing any pants. Or, in the Baron of Boca Jatton’s mind, Dan Ryan may have been referring to his leg accessories.
JATT STARR: What? My sock garters?
The Champion of Jattanooga raises his leg towards Dan Ryan and showed off the garters on his wrapped around his calf. The clasps keeping up his green, officially licensed “Canada Dry” socks in place. An impulse purchase made a couple of days ago, his little way of showing solidarity towards his immensely attractive and totally Canadian wife.
DAN RYAN: No! What— Why? I’m so confused.
JATT STARR: They hold up my socks.
DAN RYAN: No. What are you doing and why aren’t you wearing any pants?
The question had been asked. The truth behind the stain on his pants was a harrowing one. It would take the Jatti Master’s complete focus to properly tell it so he released his pants. A soaking pant leg flopped off the side of the sink, a small soapy puddle began to form drip-after-drip-after drip.
JATT STARR: There I was, enjoying a Mackintosh’s Toffee Bar, when I came across this young man with a smoking hot date. It was probably his sister, there was some resemblance. Heck, we are in Texas, maybe he was dating his own sister. I did not ask and, looking back, I do not think I would have wanted that bit of information. Creepy. Anyway, the guy asked me for my autograph. The Jattinum Standard is always there for the adoration of the Jattlantian Army. Except, this douchenozzle was wearing a Scott Stevens t-shirt. I didn’t even know they made Scott Stevens t-shirts! And you know my unbreakable code when it comes to my autograph. I only sign my name for fans wearing….
DAN RYAN: …Wearing Jatt Starr….
JATT STARR: ….Jatt Starr or Jatt Starr related merchandise.
DAN RYAN: I’m aware.
JATT STARR: I mean, who did this blunderbuss think he was asking for the Rembrandt of Wrestling’s autograph while wearing the Yahoo Serious of the HOW’s t-shirt? Obviously, he was asking for whatever it was that I was going to do.
DAN RYAN: Obviously. He was a nerd. He had it coming.
JATT STARR: So, I put my Mackintosh in my back pocket and I signed his shirt. I put the first thing that popped in my head. I wrote “Scott Stevens Licks Sagging Old Man Scrotes”.
I put my Mackintosh in my back pocket and proceeded to sign the back of this guy’s shirt. And of course, I am immediately put on blast as that statement implies that licking old man balls is a bad thing and it is suggested that it may have been an insensitive comment. What” Would it be more acceptable to say that Bobbinette Carey licks wrinkly old man testes? It was total poppycock. Naturally, I rebutted with the fact that my fanbase is forty-two percent gay men between the ages of thirty-five and fifty-four. Well, that was the wrong thing to say, even though numbers do not lie, so this chick with mohawk and an HOW polo shirt walks by and accuses me of using that particular fanbase to excuse my apparent “insensitivity”. Now, granted, I was maybe still perturbed by the Scott Stevens t-shirt and I may have called this young lady a “Fem-Nazi”. Apparently, calling someone a “Nazi” is no longer a viable insult.
DAN RYAN: The world’s changing. Get to the point.
JATT STARR: Maybe I could have avoided all this mularkey if I had just signed it something lame and unoriginal like ‘Scott Pee-vens”or “The Turtleneck Penis” or something. How do we even know what I wrote is an insult? I do not know Stevens like that. He might love licking droopy ball sacs, it might be his favorite thing to do! It’s not an insult unless he takes it as one. Who knows, maybe—-
DAN RYAN: Will you get on with it?
JATT STARR: Fine. Long story short, the Thane of Starrkarth did the mature thing and walked away. And yeah, it riled me up that I was being verbally assaulted by some Scott Stevens nerd, his sister-date, and some punky hippie fascist chick so I forgot all about my toffee bar in my pocket, which may have gotten a bit warm, and I sat on it. And now, my pants look like I pooped in them, hence, why I am here cleaning them.
DAN RYAN: With cheap restroom soap?
JATT STARR: It’s not like the Earl of GlouStarr is constantly carrying around those Tide pens.
DAN RYAN: Can you at least put some pants on?
Considering the circumstances, it was not an unreasonable request. One should not have friendly conversations in public restrooms without pants on (Jatt Starr after all believe in his firm no talking while using a toilet/urinal in a public restroom, he found it creepy). However, Jatt Starr found one logical argument to Dan Ryan’s reasonable request.
JATT STARR: I can’t. They are completely soaked.
And so, the Scourge of Starrpathia yanks out a couple of paper towels from the dispenser on the wall and continues to attempt to scrub out the candy stain (to no avail).
DAN RYAN: We need to work on a War Games strategy. There’s no way I’m walking out of Mexico a loser.
JATT STARR: Oh, yeah you are.
DAN RYAN: Excuse me?
JATT STARR: Yeah, we are not going to win “War Games”.
DAN RYAN: You might have a low opinion of yourself and your chances at “War Games”, don’t lump me in with that. I’m looking to win that thing.
Jatt Starr stopped scrubbing and looked over at Dan Ryan, the deluded and naive Dan Ryan with his HOTv Tag Team Championship belt over his shoulder, the intense and incredibly talented Dan Ryan. Dan Ryan who had no idea how War Games worked. The Savior of Starrkham let out a long, exacerbating sigh and shook off the suds on his hands from the cheap soap that had begun sucking the hydration from his normally perfectly smooth hands.
JATT STARR: Do you know why the Duke of Jattmandu clobbered that popped zit, Charles de Whatever?
DAN RYAN: You thought you might lose, he said something about your daughter, he looks like a massive tool, maybe you just don’t like the guy, I don’t know.
JATT STARR: The Ruler of Jattllantis had penned a little public letter with some rather not-so-nice things to say about Lee. It was an emotional response. An ego driven proclamation. The thing is, though, I could say that Lee Best likes to whack off to National Geographic specials about the mating habits of pelicans and he will not do a damn thing about it, you want to know why?
DAN RYAN: I don’t really—-
JATT STARR: Because he knows I know what the bigger picture looks like. Sure, call me egotistical, arrogant, neurotic, Leisure Suit Larry, whatever. At the end of the day, I know what’s what. I bludgeoned that poor sap with that cane tonight, it was to send a message. A message of understanding. The Sultan of SeaJattle is willing to take a loss in order to make the other side weaker. I am talking about sacrificing myself for the team. And, to be clear, I am not talking about Team Behemoth with you, me, Bobbinette Sasquatch, and Azula. I am talking about the Alliance, bro.
DAN RYAN: Winning War Games—-
JATT STARR: Would be a Hall of Fame move for you, my man! The Starrson City Icon gets it! I am in no way slandering your ability and talent. You, me, either or both of us could win the whole enchilada but….should we? Think about it. Steve Solex and Evan Ward are the two Final Alliance War Games Captains. If we win, we win representing Clay Byrd. You know what that means? The captain dictates who the HOW Champion will be. Why give him that power? We should maintain the status quo. Let Evan Ward and Christopher America squabble over who gets to be the HOW Champ if their team wins. Let Steve Solex strut around like Mario Maurako with the strap around his waist, slapping ladies asses and telling them who their Alpha Daddy is. Our job is to make sure none of the dweebs win.
DAN RYAN: That makes no sense. You’re saying we’re just being used?
JATT STARR: No! We are soldiers, Danaconda! We are fighting for the greater good! And that might mean certain War Games teammates of ours might need to catch some friendly fire in the name of this greater good: The ginormous “B” emblazoned on our jackets.
The letterman’s jackets were a gift bestowed upon them by Lee Best, a man who does not believe in gift giving. Jatt Starr, proud that he was donning the “B” of the Final Alliance leaned towards his HOTv Co-World Champion to emphasize what the Grand Overlord of Jatturn was fighting for. Jatt Starr knew Dan Ryan might not buy into what he was saying, Dan Ryan, after all, had an Alaska sized chip on his shoulder since the scandal that nearly had him blackballed from professional wrestling. But maybe Jatt was wrong. Maybe Dan Ryan would put his competitive nature aside and buy into the idea that their goal was to prevent a Non-Final Alliance member from winning at all costs…..
DAN RYAN: I’m calling bullshit on that. You wanna sabotage the nerds on our team…Clay, Nettie, and Xander, assuming he wins his match, and throw the match, that’s on you. But….I’m going to win this thing with or without you.
JATT STARR: Look man, I respect your decision. If you want to go for the win, I will not stop you, in fact I will support you. No matter what happens, I hope you know, I have your back. One hundred percent.
DAN RYAN: Thanks.
JATT STARR: However….
The Marquis of MadagaStarr almost sighed the word. Jatt Starr knew he would be asking a lot of his HOTv Tag Team partner especially considering their conflicting views on how to approach War Games. And he most certainly did not envision he would ask Dan Ryan for this courtesy wearing his “StarrSek Industries” briefs while attempting to clean his pants (which were not cheap, by any means).
DAN RYAN: This can’t be good.
JATT STARR: There is one little thing….
DAN RYAN: What is it?
JATT STARR: More of a favor, really.
DAN RYAN: A favor…..
JATT STARR: A small one.
DAN RYAN: It’s not sounding very small.
JATT STARR: It is something supereasy.
DAN RYAN: What are you asking me to do?
JATT STARR: Nothing.
DAN RYAN: Nothing?
JATT STARR: Nothing.
DAN RYAN: I don’t get it.
JATT STARR: There is a favor….
DAN RYAN: Right, you want me to do something which is really to do nothing but if I am supposed to do nothing then why even bring it up?
JATT STARR: Because if you don’t know what I am asking you not to do then you might end up doing it.
DAN RYAN: I’m lost. Let’s start over. What, specifically, are you asking from me?
JATT STARR: Nothing.
DAN RYAN: I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU’RE SAYING!
JATT STARR: You know my wife….
DAN RYAN: No.
JATT STARR: Natalie.
DAN RYAN: Yes.
JATT STARR: You know her.
DAN RYAN: Not personally. We have never been introduced.
JATT STARR: You know I am married and my wife’s name is Natalie.
DAN RYAN: Yes.
JATT STARR: Her son is Conor Fuse.
DAN RYAN: Right.
JATT STARR: Which now makes me his father.
DAN RYAN: That poor bastard.
JATT STARR: Prick.
DAN RYAN: A joke, relax.
JATT STARR: Speaking of pricks, he’s on Mike Best’s team.
DAN RYAN: So?
JATT STARR: As his father and, given the fact that his mother, my wife, is astonishingly limber and absurdly hot—
DAN RYAN: An opinion you love to express to anyone that will listen.
JATT STARR: Fact. Not opinion.
DAN RYAN: Either way, you express this “fact” a lot. It’s getting tiresome.
JATT STARR: Sorry, I did not know I was being such a jerk off about my insanely ravishing wife. Okay, yeah, maybe I do go a little overboard….but she’s HOT!
DAN RYAN: And that’s fine. We just don’t need to hear about it twelve times a day.
JATT STARR: Fine! I will work on it. Anyway, I feel a level of responsibility for the lad. Given the serious nature of War Games, I was hoping you could do me the favor of just…ignoring Conor at War Games. Let him be someone else’s problem.
DAN RYAN: No.
JATT STARR: Why not?!
DAN RYAN: It’s WAR GAMES!
JATT STARR: Exactly why I am coming to you with this favor. He could get crippled or worse.
DAN RYAN: Didn’t he almost win one a couple of years ago?
JATT STARR: Yeah! He’s older now! He’s not as spry! Look, can you promise not to lay a finger on him, for me? For your fellow HOTv Co-World Champion?
DAN RYAN: What if he lays a finger on me?
JATT STARR: If you have to defend yourself, so be it. BUT…no permanent or career ending injuries, can you promise me that?
DAN RYAN: I can promise to….think about it.
JATT STARR: Fair enough.
DAN RYAN: Regardless of our differing viewpoints, I think it’d be important to get together and work out a strategy that would benefit both of our, whaddyacallit, philosophies. Preferably, a time where you have pants on.
JATT STARR: I am wearing underwear, you know. It’s not like I’m flopping my dong all over the place.
DAN RYAN: We’ll talk next week.
Without saying another word, Dan Ryan turned around and exited the restroom. Jatt Starr stared at the door for a moment before his attention returned to his soaked pants. He picked them up and opened them up. The brown splotch remained, covering the whole ass of his pants.
JATT STARR: Ah, crap.
The Ruler of Jattlantis let out a resigned sigh as he walked them over to the air dryer attached to the wall. With a little more force than he probably needed, the Jattinum Standard struck the large button on the air dryer which then came to life with an eardrum shattering whirring. As his pants slowly dried in his hands, Jatt Starr’s mind began wandering. He had a flight to catch early the following day: Houston to Toronto with a four hour layover in Denver. Then, a week with Natalie. He planned on spending the next five days with his wife, spending zero time thinking about the Nerds, Mike Best, Clay Byrd, Bobbinette Carey, or that lying, conniving, criminally perverted Joe Bergman. As far as Conor was concerned, he asked and that was all he could do. The young man was family now and should be treated as such, even though his personal feelings for his new family clashed with business (i.e. Lee Best and the Final Alliance). Those would be thoughts he would focus on next week, for now, he dreamed of a much deserved stress free break from the HOW. It was going to be splendid!