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> DM me I'm bored, vs Link Rexx
The Dragon
Posted: January 10, 2020 05:27 pm


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Group: Members
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Member No.: 404
Joined: March 04, 2019




Part 1 - Exposed

We are taken to what looks to be a backstage area, that has been crudely made up to look like some form of low-budget talk show. Two folding chairs facing opposite each other are occupied by Gemma Frost, backstage interview for Sin City Underground, and Mark “The Dragon” Cross, it’s current Underground champion. The title belt is seated on a small round table in between them, wrapped around a half-full bottle of Maker’s Mark. Closest to the camera sits two empty glasses.

Gemma Frost: So you've seen a lot of doors close in recent weeks, a narrow defeat to Fenris, missing out on a shot in the Six Pack Challenge, a hard-fought loss against Griffin Hawkins for the Roulette title, THEN your Fire Dragons partner goes down injured, potentially putting the title you did hold in jeopardy too...safe to say you needed that Underground title win huh?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: I needed it?

Mark already shifted his weight forward in the chair, realising this might be more hard-hitting than he first expected.[/color]

Gemma Frost: We've seen plenty of wrestlers disappear into obscurity for less Mark.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Brutal. I get what you’re trying to say, but it wouldn’t have been like that for me.

Gemma Frost: What makes you so sure?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: How many of them could earn their spot back on merit, honestly? I was still wrestling here and there before I came to Sin City, and chances are a lot of my old fans would still have been able to cling onto 'the glory days' but a few years in the shadows is a long time in this game. I came in at the bottom, no expectations, started winning, and got in the picture for the top title. Of both brands.

Gemma Frost: Your point?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: I’ve got enough ability to win a whole bunch of matches, and I’m not one to dine out on my past successes either. Put enough ‘dubs’ in the results column and I can’t get overlooked forever.

Gemma Frost: A lot of wins, but no main brand title to show for it.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Correct.

Gemma Frost: Do you think you're ready?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Maybe...maybe not. If we’re being honest it probably came three months too early. Transitioning back to a full-time schedule, handling the emotional impact of my divorce, making the decision not to throw it all in as soon as my protege recovered from snapping her leg into a couple of extra pieces...getting the level of success, as early as I did, wasn’t really part of the plan. I always had confidence in my abilities to come back in and do damage, even on the main show, but I’m my own biggest critic, and I think I still needed to convince myself that I was good enough to hit the heights. I’ve been through that journey now - I just need a bit more time to fine-tune all the moving parts, then I’ll be looking to build on the foundations I laid in 2019.

Gemma Frost: Let’s go back to your last appearance, that won you that title. You seemed almost disappointed by Valentina's involvement...what can you tell us about that?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: It's nigh on impossible to have a match in SCU without someone running in these days, it's bordering on ridiculous to be honest...but nobody else had any real influence on proceedings other than that moment. If she hadn't stepped in the match was over, along with my title shot, and that's the big issue for me. I've spent the past 6 months being critical of guys that maybe haven't earned their positions as cleanly as they should have, given what was at stake, and now I have to remind myself, every time I look at the belt, that I've become one of those guys, at least for now. Now I have to work out what’s needed to earn back my self-respect.

Gemma Frost: Do you blame her?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: I get she wanted to help her friend, her teammate. There’s nothing wrong with that. I also get that she couldn't possibly anticipate how much of a fraud I feel...my brain works in mysterious ways after all...but by the same token I can't help how I feel either, I just got put in that position by no fault of my own.

Gemma Frost: You could have laid down and let him pin you.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Well, true...but that doesn't mean I can't get myself on the road to redemption. With the ongoing GRIME situation, sometimes the greater good has to become a factor.

Gemma Frost: Ah, so you feel a responsibility to represent the Underground brand more now?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Absolutely - It's the job of the flagship champion to lead from the front, and even if I don't like how the title fell into my hands, all I can do is control how I defend it from this moment forward. I didn't make strides on the main brand to fly the flag for SCU, that was purely for my own gratification...but now my role is more company-wide and it’s important that I embrace. Sin City Underground needs someone to fight with integrity and perform to the highest calibre, and no matter how heavy-handed those that want to tear it down choose to be, they will not have my belt, and won’t get control of anything other than their own little Twitter account.

Gemma Frost: So where does this leave you as far as your double duty with Sin City Wrestling? Do you expect to be utilized less?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Probably. The main brand is quite adept at recruiting fresh blood after Supershows, and I expect the priority is to get those guys in front of the fans first and foremost. I'm available, and I plan to take every opportunity I can to prove I can raise my game and be competitive over there.

Gemma Frost: Any potential opponents? Alex Jones?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: I don't see that, unless there's a belt or a number one contendership on the line, there's not enough in it for Alex to want to take that fight now.

Gemma Frost: You don't think he'd want an opportunity to knock you down a peg or two? He's been one of your biggest critics.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: 6 months ago he might have been tempted, but I've proven that I'm not here to play around in that time. Talking a big game when very few people knew who I was, and even less cared, that’s not much of a gamble, but I’ve put too many strong performances in since then. Nobody wants to be added to the list of the SCU reject's scalps, and since I’ve made it clear that I’m no chump in the ring, it’s probably not worth the risk.

Gemma Frost: How about Travis Levitt? I think a lot of us thought you and Val were...you know...that came right outta left-field.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Did it? I mean honestly I don’t know where you got that anything was going on...Kelli Torres is probably still going to refer to her as my girlfriend...but no, we had a lot of fun keeping everyone guessing for a while. She’s happy, I have my own thing going with a lovely lady I met in New York, it’s early stages but I’m hopeful. No girls were stolen from me, there won’t be any grudge matches, nothing exciting to report.

Gemma Frost: The general opinion that it was when the Fire Dragons became a thing, your career here in Vegas really took off. That’s why I’m surprised you suggesting that someone else from the Dragon's Lair camp might show up for Blast from the Past, who did you have in mind?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Faith Simpson's tour of Japan will be finishing right around then, and it might work out better for another Bombshell to slot in and balance the numbers in my place.

Gemma Frost: You said earlier that your title shot came three months too early. Win Blast from the Past, you get those three months, perfectly timed for a run at the World title. Is a part of you not hungry for that yourself? You could both enter.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: And get matched up against each other? Not ideal for us.

Gemma Frost: You might get paired together.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Not ideal for our opponents.

Gemma Frost: OK figuratively here, Val's injury free tomorrow. Faith's Japan tour has already ended, she gets released from her company in Miami, she's totally free. Who do you choose for the 2020 Fire Dragons squad.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: That wouldn't happen with Faith.

Gemma Frost: Pretend that it did.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: If she got released she'd have offers queuing up in an instant.

Gemma Frost: I said figuratively, answer the question.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: It's a stupid question.

Gemma Frost: Just answer it dude.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Val.

Gemma Frost: Oh my Christ seriously!?!

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: What?

Gemma Frost: If Faith is half as good as you, and from my extensive research, the Internet says she is, why would you not pick her in a heartbeat!?!

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: The whole internet?

Gemma Frost: Pretty much.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Because Faith isn't like...look...and I mean no disrespect here to anyone, truly, but people end up in development territories and "budget brands" for a reason. I'm far better inside of a ring than I am with a mic in my hand or a camera in my face, right? Val showed huge potential as a rookie but there were questions as to whether she'd actually be able to live up to it long term. Underground? This works for us. I win a lot of matches, I don't necessarily sell a load of merch.

Gemma Frost: And Faith?

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: She understands vlogging and Social Media, engages regularly with her fans, has wrestling pedigree in her family and the contacts to go with it, a lot of experience for someone of her age, one hell of a worker in the ring, exciting to watch in and out of it, plus already proven herself as a worthy champion before her injury.

Gemma Frost: There's nothing stopping you from following her lead.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: There is - Me. Look I'm over a decade into this business now, and they say a leopard never changes its spots. All I've ever done is focused on what I do in the ring. I'm damn good at that and I made that my unique selling point. Faith is a golden ticket for any top management anywhere in the US. All I need is to be in the good books of one guy - I can earn my opportunities the hard way from there. You don’t want to hear me chatting away any more than you already do.

Gemma Frost: Well...I guess I can’t argue with that. Mark, thanks for joining me, thanks for the whiskey, congratulations on becoming Underground champion, and best of luck in...feeling worthy of it I guess? I’ve been Gemma Frost - Thanks for watching.

The scene fades to black.

Part 2 - Man Cave

We open to a room that we don’t instantly recognise. On the wall behind the camera are what looks to be framed comic book covers. On the floor below them is a rack filled with five guitars of different shapes, sizes and colours. Sitting in the middle of the shot is a noblechairs Epic gaming chair, black leather with royal blue stiching. Out of the side of the shot, Mark “The Dragon” Cross appears, lowering himself into the chair and addressing the camera.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Hey guys, thanks a lot for joining me! So my ex-wife used to be a dancer, and we converted one of the rooms of the house into a studio of sorts so she could train when she had a show coming up for example. Honestly, it was going to waste since she left, and since I’ve started livestreaming on Twitch a little more, I figured it was time to convert it into a gaming room. Plus, I finally have somewhere to keep all my guitars, rather than leaving them cluttered all over the house, which is another plus. Of course, I’ll be taking this as an opportunity to get destroyed by 12 year olds on Fortnite at some point, but we have more pressing matters at hand, as it’s time to get myself back in the ring for my first Climax Control of 2020.

Mark takes a long drink from the glass of water resting on the desk in front of him, ready to begin.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: DM me I'm bored. The mating call of the horny and the desperate, and about all I can find in the recent history of my latest opponent. This one is going to be fun. I mean look, I understand, itches need to be scratched, I get that. For example since my divorce, I’ve found it hasn’t exactly been on tap, and I’ve had to take active measures to make sure that I’m dealing with the urges, but it’s that last two words - I’m bored. You turn up for your first match at your new company, and you didn’t win. How exactly can you be bored? See here's my thought process when I'm at a loose end. Do my muscles ache? I’m training full-time, YES. OK, is it all of them? If not, I can train the ones that don't while the fibres I’ve torn to shreds get the chance to recover. If they're all shafted, watch footage of an opponent. No match? I'll watch footage of a potential future opponent. That's probably why I have one of these.

Mark reaches down to retrieve the Underground championship, holding it aloft for the camera to see.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Work ethic. Work ethic is what breeds champions, and that is why empty, meaningless sex is for nothing more than an extra cardio workout, or to stop me from thinking about it and becoming a distraction. I don't claim to be higher and mightier, and this isn't a speech about saving myself for marriage, I just make sure it's part and parcel of making me a better wrestler, not something I choose to do instead. Link put on a good show at Climax Control, I'll give him that. After all, first night nerves are a thing after all, companies set up their rings differently and the response underfoot can be different to what you're used to. He has plenty of footage to study on my recent matches too if he chooses. He's probably going to come out an even better fighter this week, and of course I have to be ready for that and respond in kind, even if he hasn’t prepared as professionally as he probably could, or should have.

Having been resting the Underground belt on the desk, he now lowers it back to its place on the floor.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Trouble is for him, I'm maybe more dangerous now than I ever have been. The last time I stepped in a wrestling ring, I won a title belt. It travels around with me like the Double Down tag title did for some time...but that night, that victory, it didn't go down the way I wanted it to, the way it should have done. Every time I look in my bag, or see it sitting on a chair I'm reminded that the victory wasn't clean. Everything I’d done in build-up to it proved that I was worthy to hold it, but on the night, no. I still have to prove that I'm deserving, to those who won't look the other way like it was some kind of perverted justice, and most of all...I need to prove it to me.

Mark clears his throat.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Every victory brings me one step closer to being able to look myself in the mirror every morning again. Every defence of that title makes me prouder to call myself it’s rightful champion. You know I've had a lot of people try and question my thought process - Aren't you being hard on yourself? On your friend for helping you win, after all it’s how you got your tag titles? Isn't this all just you being dramatic...but I tell them no. I'm not. This isn't drama, this is intensity. A lot of people in my position? They'd sit in my pool, soak up the Miami sun, buy faster cars and more expensive watches, live the high life, you know? Turn up and wrestle for whoever's offers to have the most cocaine waiting for them backstage or something. But that's not me. That's why I'm still here, pushing every day to get back to my best, and eventually become the best.

He looks down at the floor for a moment, his voice lowering.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: I'm going through some things right now. This isn't a position I wanted, nor expected to be in, but I'm working it out, and I see the silver lining. I considered that maybe it'd be enough for me, doing the Fire Dragons thing with my compañera, winning a few matches here in the big time, upsetting a few people's days when the wannabe wins again...don't we all hate it when that happens...but I've seen how much importance being a good Underground champion holds for me. A deserving champion. Someone who leads from the front. I know I can carry it now, and this is just the beginning. I want what Ben Jordan has, eventually. I don’t know if I’ll have to take it from him, or someone who proves they have the capability. I don’t know when I’ll get the opportunity. The only thing I know is that I have to earn that right. Either by Blast from the Past victory, or from other means. It isn't lost on me how tough that will be, but if 2019 is anything to show by, when I want something to happen, I do not ask, I earn. I will earn my shot. I will earn my title. I will earn the right to put two middle fingers squarely in the face of anyone who wrote me off as a budget brand pretender, and send them trudging back to the locker room when they come for me.

Mark leans forward, closer to the camera.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: That's what 2020 has in store for me and Link unfortunately you are the first...link in the chain...man I hate myself sometimes...but you're in my way buddy. I don't want your career here to start 0-2, you clearly have talent, but I'm a man on a mission and you’re the first of many obstacles I have to move past if I want to make that happen. I don’t dislike you, and I hope you do very well in your career here in Sin City. Let me tell you that no matter who you speak to, or what you read, there’s no shame in losing to me. Plenty already have, and plenty will again. It’ll be a recurring theme over the next 12 months. My hand raised in victory. Another name added to my list of conquests.

Mark raises a closed fist above his head.

Mark “The Dragon” Cross: Thanks for watching, throw me a follow if you haven’t already, I’ll see you out there!

The stream fades to black. A “Currently Offline” splash screen appears in its place as the stream goes offline.
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