The place is so tranquil, with the occasional breeze rustling through the leaves of differing shades of green being the only thing to be heard. The sun is bright, the weather is that of a typical Summer day. We flip shot to SCW superstar Brandon Hendrix sitting alone on the end of a walkway sticking out into the lake. The type which people use to board small boats. Brandon sits quietly, almost silently with his feet hanging off the walkway, much more pensive than usual.
'When we are young, we come into this world a blank canvas, influenced by nothing and believing in nothing. The world we live in changes us, moulds us around our experiences and the trials and tribulations we endure as human beings. The person we become as an adult is the result of every experience, every decision, every significant moment we experience in our lives. Am I proud of everything I have ever done to get here? I'd be lying if I said that was the case. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't cut a corner, taken a deal or acted unceremoniously to become the man I am today. What counts however, is that it got results…"
We join a local Wrestling show mid-match, the shot focussing on a much younger Brandon Hendrix. He runs out of a turnbuckle, ducking a clothesline from his opponent, leaping to the second rope in the opposite corner, executing a backflip before landing horribly. His knee crumbles beneath him and instantly all play stops. The referee hesitates for a moment to make sure it isn't part of the show before throwing up the familiar "X" signifying a problem before the match ends. Confusion in the crowd as Brandon holds his knee in agony...silence.
We go forward a few minutes. Hendrix is being helped to the back by two fellow babyfaces in an effort to maintain character. He is lowered into a chair in the corner, before the First Aider on call for the show starts to take a look at him. Mike, Brandon's trainer paces nervously.
"How you feeling, mate? That bump looked ugly!"
"Man...it feels like my knee just fucking exploded. I've landed that shit a thousand times picture perfectly."[/color]
Hendrix grimaces as his knee is poked and prodded by the examiner. His pain, both physical and mental are obvious to everyone. This was to be his big night. The night that punters from around the area, as well as a Talent Scout for another company were to witness him winning the Championship. This was to be the start of a big push for a lad who had worked so hard to receive a break. Giving up his job, time at home and missing countless engagements with his girlfriend. The examiner tapes up Brandon, advising him to stay off it for a while before disappearing.
"So what? It doesn't look great right now. I'm off home to wash down a few painkillers with a couple of beers and see how I feel in the morning. I'll keep you posted."
With that, Hendrix throws his stuff into his bag, puts his coat on and hobbles out of the back entrance to the venue in the best way he can.
"Many people like to judge what they see before them. The man that graces their venues, their TV screens and their homes. They think because they paid their money or sat down with an oversized bag of crisps each, that they know me. They know what shaped me. The fact is that no one ever asked. No one ever wondered why I make the decisions I do. Am I just a dirty player? Or is there something else?"
We come back to a house in Walsall. Brandon Hendrix is walking to the door. His knee appears to be better. His rehab was a success. He has his kit bag on his shoulder. Maybe he has just come home from the big comeback show that his girlfriend was too sick to get to. A shining title belt adorns his other shoulder, just catching the moonlight on the clean, metallic plates. His family witnessed it, even his elderly Grandfather. It was the first and last time he ever got chance to see Brandon in action. He puts his key in the door and unlocks it, expecting to see his girlfriend in her familiar seat in the lounge, watching some late night crappy TV show. Nothing. The lights are off and there are no signs of life down here.
Brandon hears a sound upstairs. He moves towards it and starts to head up the stairs, before tripping on a pair of shoes he doesn't recognize. Switching on his phone to gain a bit of light, he sees that the shoes aren't the only thing on the stairs. Discarded trousers, shirts and his girlfriend's familiar underwear, the set she bought to wear for him as a Birthday surprise last year are cast along the floor on the landing. Now we know what those sounds were. Hendrix creeps up the stairs. He wants to catch them in the act. On reaching the door, it seems he hasn't been noticed. He hesitates for a second. The other side of that door, the girl he had been with for five years was with another man. He seems to ponder the consequences of his actions. Seconds seem like hours right now.
*In thought* I have two choices. I break this door down and we see what whoever it is inside my missus is really made of. That's not like me. I prided myself on being a good guy. That's what won her over when I met her. I wasn't like the other jerks and dickheads that hit on her. But the nice guy act isn't what she's into at this minute right? This could change my life. What's the alternative? I leave them to it? Offer them a cuppa for afterwards? Shit, maybe she wants the sheets changing. That's our fucking bed!! I'm...no....cuck!
Brandon's foot thunders against the wooden door. The door flies open, smashing into the dresser behind it. Makeup flies all over the place as Brandon's girlfriend and a man sit bolt upright. It becomes apparent as Hendrix's eyes adjust to the light that the man is none other than his own best friend Ray! The guy he has been best friends with since pre school! The man that was there in the Hospital as Brandon was told that if the operation didn't work, he was finished. What a fucking betrayal!
Brandon looks heartbroken. In one night, the night that was supposed to be his greatest night and the culmination of years of hard work, his whole world had come crashing around him. He leapt across the bed, tackling Ray to the ground. Ray is rocked, dazed by the speed of the guy who two months back couldn't make the stairs. He hits the wall hard. Hendrix is on top of him, raining down lefts and rights into his face. His nose explodes, covering the beige carpet in bright red blood. The contrast is astounding. Ray manages to wriggle free and gets to his feet as Brandon gets up.
"Man I'm sorry! It meant nothing!"
"NOTHING?! This woman was the woman I was to marry, and you of all fucking people, the man I told about the plan to propose next month, the man I was going to ask to be my best man tears it all down for fucking NOTHING??!"
"Look, I'm sorry! Man, come on! You're not being yourself!"
Ray is backing away from Brandon. Pleading with him to stop the onslaught as he tries to gather his clothes. Brandon reaches onto the shelf above the bedroom door and pulls down a black bat that they stored there in case of intruders at night. The purple tape on the handle makes it look somewhat familiar. He grasps it tightly in both hands and takes a swing at Ray as he is putting on his trousers!
Ray drops to the ground. Holding his head in pain in a semi conscious state. Again, the bat comes down.
Down onto the left knee of Ray. The same knee Brandon injured himself three months prior. Was this when this all started?
"Get up, prick!"
Hendrix hauls Ray to his feet, forcing him up against the wall at the top of the stairs. The moonlight coming through the window catches the look of sheer hatred and intensity in Brandon's eyes. Similar in emotion to the slightly dazed fear emanating from Ray's eyes. One push was all it took. Ray tumbled down the stairs clumsily, trying to grab a rail on the way down, to no success. Ray hit the floor, trying to get back to his feet to thwart the next attack. Hendrix is bearing down on him. His girlfriend is in hysterics, screaming and begging for him to stop. If only he wasn't right by the trousers her phone was in, so she could call for help. He hits the bottom of the stairs and Ray is frantically trying to open the door.
Another swing connects with the hand Ray has against the door, breaking two fingers. Ray screams in agony as he collapses to the ground. His fingers pointing ways in which fingers shouldn't point. Brandon casually kicks the clothes Ray didn't manage to collect away from him, so he is positioned bat in hand between Ray and his clothes.
"Well, Ray. You have about three seconds...The times it's going to take me to warm another swing up to get the FUCK out of this house. If I ever see you, hear from you or even hear your name, trust me...this will be just a fucking warm up for what you'll get."
"Brandon, man I'm sorry! Come on!"
"You want me to finish this count?!"
Ray high tails it to his car. Fumbling with the lock, hopping in and in seconds he has gone. Brandon stands in the doorway of the house that just played part in his personal destruction. Picking up his title belt and his kit bag, still bat in hand he walks out of the house, slamming the door behind him. He gets to his car, throwing his bag and belt onto the passenger seat. He takes a look at the bat, decorated with the fresh, warm blood of his former friend.
"Well I guess you need a name...How about the name of the one woman it appears I can rely on...I'll call you Beth."
"Now I stand here… I don't know honestly. After this, my personal life went to hell. First suffered from my heart condition, then gotten screwed out of a wrestling company, and nearly took myself out of wrestling all in general. Then, a few things happened. I found an amazing woman named Carina who has kept me strong throughout everything I've been through. When I was… just carted out of her."
FEW MONTHS AGO
Brandon shoots up from his sleep: head drenched in sweat, his breathing rapid, his heart beating at an uncomfortable rate. He clenches his chest, taking deep breaths to calm himself down, but to no avail, his heart continues to ache and ache until he couldn't handle it any longer. He scurried his hand over to his phone and retrieved it, dialing 911.
"911 what's your emergency?"
"I… I need… ambulance.."
"What's your address you're calling from sir?"
Brandon proceeds to tell his address, in a state of deep panic.
"Okay, an ambulance has been dispatched to your address. What seems to be the situation?"
"M-my heart… I have… heart condition… it's… not.. good."
"Okay just stay on the phone until the paramedics arrive."
"I'm battling my own demons." Brandon taps a spot on his left pec, signaling his heart. "This fights me everyday. Some days I wake up and I think it's my last breath I ever take. I step inside this ring, my HOME, and I could collapse dead in this ring. This demon ruined everything I had. Everything I spent months of work on. Demon nearly cost me my career, let alone life. The pain of not knowing what could have been drives me to this day. Because instead of thinking of the "what ifs" I think about the "I wills".
I WILL be victorious in this fatal four way match. I saw who I got in this match: two former World Champions and another talented possible former world champion. Hell, who am I in this match? I'm just some muscled up punk who lost his debut match. Why am I in this match and why should I win? I can't answer why I'm in this match, but as for why I'm going to win this match is what I can answer: I need to win this. I set the goal that anywhere I go, I was going to make an impact and be a wrestler that fans can be proud of. How if a guy that can drop dead at any moment can do this and be successful, that they can do it too. Jack Washington, Austin James Mercer, Ken Davison, are you prepared to have to put down a man to beat him? Because that's what you're going to have to do to me in order to pin me. And don't worry…"
Brandon lifts his arm up, with "Beth" coming into view.
"Because I'm willing to do the same to you three. See you on Climax Control."