April 01, 2020, 03:48:12 PM

Author Topic: Ride Once More  (Read 101 times)

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Offline Mariano Fernandez

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Ride Once More
« on: February 04, 2020, 03:19:21 PM »
Beau Von Braunís interference had cost Mariano the match, and his reckoning would come at Retrograde. But the Pay-Per-View, and his title defense, was one show away. For the moment he had to wait, but now Logan Traeger had come back to 4CW. It was always nice to see a friend, but Mariano had more pressing concerns to take care of.

He wasnít going to let this Main Event, OR Beau Von Braun, be his undoing.

He would saddle up again.

ďWe ride once more, Logan.Ē

A glorious early afternoon sun was shining over the spotless sky, and amidst the dusty wind stood the 4CW Pride Champion, leather jacket on his back and clad in blue jeans, leaning on a jet black motorcycle - nothing but a desert open road around him with the exception of a solitary building - a solid concrete and steel structure whose letters and symbol made no mistake as to what it was, a staple of hardened people who live on the saddle and on the road, and no matter what, always ride forward. A long-standing American icon, and proud heritage of the city of Milwaukee.

The Harley-Davidson Museum, in front of which DA #TROLL GUY is standing, a line of motorcycles of the eponymous name parked behind him, and at his side, one of his own.

ďWeíre going to be seeing a lot of each other these days, mang, here and in Southside, but while you ARE able to fall back on your glory in Miami, itís here where you have, you NEED, to fight as if your life depended on it, because thatís how Iím taking every single god damned match. You said so yourself, did you not? The beast is different, the competition is stiffer, the sacrifice is grander. Here you have had me for months making the god damned GRANDEST sacrifices of my entire life, and now we come across each other once again in 4CW.

And yet, for all your eloquent and powerful words, does it MEAN that much to you, Logan? When it comes to deeds, how MUCH are you willing to sacrifice? Another round, you called this match on social media, but while our last one was a happier time, now there is a point to make, for both of us.

We do this not for animosity or bad blood, not for grudges real or imagined. But we do this, after all, to rise up and ride once more, and that has to be, is GOING to be, what drives it all forward. And THAT, Logan, is what sets it apart from it being just ďanother roundĒ.Ē

Mariano raises his eyebrows as a sly smile appears on his face. Perhaps it did make sense that they be booked against each other, but he wasnít oblivious to why it was - and therefore, why he would be the victor.

ďAfter all, coming back from the god damned depths is what we both do, isnít it? We make the comeback despite it all and against all god damned odds. We start from nothing and make our MARK in the world. We throw ourselves in the tides and stand against the undertow, refusing to budge - these were your same exact words. You did it in Southside, will do it again there soon if I donít stop you there this time - and Iíve done it here in 4CW. You know this story by heart - you said as much to the fucking parasite that now holds the 4CW Title.

And you know, Logan, it was because just like YOU want to be, I AM a stubborn son of a bitch - the kind that keeps banging head first against the gates until they finally open, no matter HOW much I have to bleed, or nurse long-lasting wounds, to do so. This is not ďanother roundĒ, Logan, this is what warriors endure! You want to claim those words, you want the entire world to know you as the wounded dog, the warrior coming for war that will go for the throat first chance - and you want them to buy into it.

In Traeger We Trust.Ē

The Pride Champion shakes his head, this time a serious look on his face. For his part, nothing was more aggravating than seeing words go unfulfilled - especially if they were his own. How Logan could still carry on this way he would never understand - but he would not stand for it, and he would voice his thoughts accordingly.

ďBut WHAT force can be behind those words when every time you come to 4CW, you keep looking for that start that never arrives? You throw yourself at any opportunity, you go against anything and anyone, ALWAYS looking for that spark, always making promises, and commendable as it is, you CANíT stop in there alone, mang. So far, promises and more promises are all we have, all we have had at this point, and Iím god damned sick and tired of having to promise - of having to see my story reflected in yours, Logan. I canít afford, after this time and effort spent, to keep promising - to ask people endlessly for trust. I canít afford to keep throwing words that will bounce into nothing and get lost in thin air.

Because Iíve already suffered that shit before and itís a god damned torment - one Iíve worked my god damned hardest to break out of and that even now is not yet over. So I see you, with your track record elsewhere from Southside, and especially here in 4CW, and I remind myself THATís not where I want to be any more, Logan, and never wanted to in the first place. Not again.

Not EVER the fuck again.Ē

Mariano leans his head, looking at the camera as if his gaze were to pierce and shatter the lens. Wherever his road would lead him - at least the words he said were fully meant.

ďWhat Iím here to do is to fucking EARN IT - and I say this as a current Champion, overall Triple Crown Winner, and one of the more established names in this company. I say this as a guy who had the very god damned Champion right THERE only to have the win snatched from him. Itís fucking UNACCEPTABLE. Itís a god damned insult and an injustice I donít deserve - and one Iím going to get back at. Whether at Beau Von Braun at Retrograde, at Anastasia Hayden in a 4CW Title match.

But the road to that, Logan, is going to start with you.Ē

Mariano lets out a frustrated sigh - not at Logan himself, he wasnít the problem. But he would find the way to get the vindication he deserved, even if he had to go against a friend to start.

ďThink of these words as I say them, and figure out, what does THIS mean for you, Logan? You claim you want to be felt? You want them not to understand but to relate? Then come at me with the force of conviction, the strength of the MEANING behind the words you say that make that feeling known, for this is the strength that I want 4CW to FEEL. I want every single god damned person looking to this match and what comes next to feel the impact of every single word I say, and every single blow I lay, rocking them to their VERY god damned core, Logan.

Thatís what you need to bring forth to 4CW, to this match, and to me, mang. Because here again, after only one win against Luke Jones in your entire run since these Four Corners came back, is a chance anew for you. Another opportunity for redemption in the shape of another guy that came out the winner - the very beacon of hope, the one you hold onto as I do even after all this time. Granted, you didnít get an easy road - you have faced big names AND put yourself in the Warzone. Youíve felt the impact of all of that, and youíve had your time to recover. Now itís on you to make it count.

Picture, therefore, in your head, how worth this is for you, mang, because THATís how much it is to me. Because while youíve had time to rest, I have kept rolling on. Sunshine, rain or snow, Iíve saddled up and come to ride every time as the bikes at my back do, and I continue to do now. I may have been robbed of my win versus Anastasia Hayden, and I may have been on a bad losing streak before that - but I had no time off until 2020. I clawed back from Fright Night to now with every fiber of my being, mang. While you were resting up from the match against Ana, I was coming off my last defeat to Bexs, and I fought for my literal god damned life atop that god damned scaffold. And while you didnít partake in Winter Wasteland, I was getting my Pride Title back, after two months in literal hell.Ē

The chilly whisper of the wind in the deserted landscape, and the slight shadow of an echo that follow, only serve to accentuate DA #TROLL GUYís silence as he put one leg over the bike, then another, to mount its seat. Indeed, Logan hadnít come through an easy path, but neither had himself, and through it all heíd come victorious. Even if justice had been denied, he would get it back - or die trying.

But every ride began with a kickstart - and this would be his.

ďBut see, Logan - even in THAT hard path, Iíve proven that I can stand tall. I was in your position too once, when I failed to beat Dakota Smith in 2018 in the South Beach Brawl Cup. But while the Butcher got the best of you, I was the one to rip the two belts he had away, becoming double champion in the process, and casting him back to the hell he came from. While you fell against Laughlin - and I remember your comparison to myself vs. Bronx fondly -, I was the first one he lost to. And while Chris Madison beat you, Tommy and I were the ones to take him and Elena DeDraca out of Bad Company. Discount all of those if you must, but thereís the most important truth you wonít be able to deny, mang. When you and I went at each other, at the height of your glory as Excellence Champion in Southside, I beat you.Ē

Mariano displays his classic Trollface smirk, and his eyes, though without a hint of malice, are as serious as the steel in the museumís beams, and the handlebar to which his hands hold on to.

ďBut when I beat you, though double champion, I refuse to believe that was the top, the limit of my glory. Even now, twice Pride Champion, I want a higher goal. Thatís why I went towards the 4CW Champion determined to kill her, and god DAMN if I donít want to finish the god damned job.Ē

This time, a flash of anger crosses his face. The Main Event wasnít supposed to have ended that way, and now he would have to pick up the pieces. He would do that, yes.

And then he would break everyone elseís.

ďThatís why Iím angry, mang. Thatís why Iím going to rise the fuck again. Thatís why Iím going through EVERY single person standing in my way as I did after the losing streak, and thatís how I took the belt back from Cartier. And even NOW this match serves to do that, Logan. Even now weíre pitted together to see who makes the rise again. And after having risen back to a title, itís not going to be a god damned Champions Showcase stolen from me that knocks me down again. And, friend or not, isnít going to be you either.

Madison might have seen something in you, the people out there perhaps MAY trust Logan Traeger - but with Mariano Fernandez? Itís not just trust - they donít need to hold on. Itís a god damned reality, and thereís records and titles and a legacy to prove it. They may feel Logan Traeger, but they HAVE FELT Mariano Fernandez. Come Adrenaline theyíll feel it again as the wind hits your face as you glide through the open road, and YOU will have the privilege of feeling it again once more.

Itís not just you who will, mang. Because Retrograde is coming, and so is Beau Von Braun - and after last week, Iím going to send HIM a god damned message. Iím going to show him whatís in store for him at Retrograde, not just for going at the Title I hold, but for having interrupted my chance for justice. Iím going to make it clear, beyond ANY and ALL doubt, that luck and ONLY luck was what saved the 4CW Champion from losing at my hands.Ē

The Pride Championís face hardens, as hard as the asphalt below his feet, and the glint of his eyes as black as the fuel tank of the Harley-Davidson between his feet.

ďBut most importantly, Logan, Iím going to show you ONE more time how you rise from the abyss youíre plunged into. Because the next time thereís a Logan Traeger vs. Mariano Fernandez match here in 4CW, I want it to be a title match. Pride Title, North American, 4CW Title - it doesnít matter. The next time I face Logan Traeger I want a Logan Traeger that isnít looking for a comeback but for god damned glory, and I want THAT guy that resides in you to face a Mariano Fernandez whose glory has surpassed itself.

You want to be a general coming for war - Iím the bomb that makes it happen. The first strike that precedes the invasion. The rumble of the engine that precedes the bike arriving. In this city of Milwaukee and birthplace of one of the biggest icons in American culture, Iím coming to give you but a sample of the power youíre looking for. The very god damned road warrior you WANT to be, and perhaps will someday be in this company.

We both ride once more, but Iíll be the one riding in front.Ē

With that said, DA #TROLL GUY stands on the bike, and gives it a swift, clean, perfect kick start - the deafening rumble of the engine drowning the wind. As Mariano lifts his feet off the floor to place on the bikeís pedal, he grips the accelerator, and gives the camera a final look.

ďLetís ride.Ē

His hand grips the accelerator, and after a 360į turn and a cloud of smoke and dust, he speeds away, riding into the sun, as the scene fades to black.


- Special thanks to Kestrel for the avatar and signature