Re: AGGRESSION 76: Eli Flair & Aaron Jones v. Animezing Dragons! (cc) - Non Title
[FADE IN. “The Dragon” is sitting in the lotus position, his eyes closed. He’s wearing workout gear, tracksuit trousers and a plain white T-shirt, and is barefoot. Behind him is a mirrored wall. His deep breathing belies the sweat glistening in the strip lighting. Slowly, subtly at first, some music starts. Something slow, almost a chant, the periodic chime of a small bell… and a smirk appears on the Englishman’s face. He opens his eyes after 30 seconds of the music, shaking his head]
Karl:[calling to off shot] You really can be odd sometimes, you know that?
Otaku:[off camera] Only sometimes? I gotta try harder!
Karl: Please, don’t.
Otaku:[off camera] Whatever! I need the energy for my workout, and you’ve finished yours.
Karl: Yeah, yeah. Sorry, Eli, I had something more impressive, something deep and meaningful for the first time we’ve sparred verbally, but you know how tag partners can go. I think I’ll get the guys to keep this in, it’s pretty good.
Otaku:[off camera] Chortle.
Karl: Next you’ll be saying lol!
Anyway, as I was saying. You want a tag title shot at Wrestleverse. Good. I was beginning to wonder who’d challenge us after so many teams have made claim to a title match since Unleashed. Wolves of the Sea, Point of View, Dirk Dickwood Presents, so many teams.
And Blitz. Who could forget seeing those two for one night again. Seeing the guys I used to travel with. Believe me, that was the one time I’ve been actually shocked in my 10 year career.
The tag team division has been looking threadbare the past few weeks. So I was interested when I heard you call us out, Eli. It reminded me that there are still people out there who realise that the World Heavyweight title isn’t the only world title in this company.
Karl: I know, you wanted a title match at Aggression. Believe me, if it was up to me, I’d’ve booked it that way. But something you said has rung true at the office and it looks like you’ve got to earn the title match. After all, anybody can luck into a title. It takes hard graft and skill to earn your way to the match, and then walk away with the gold. My guess is that’s why you’ve been given this non-title opportunity, although I could always be wrong.
You did say to Cameron that he didn’t deserve a world title rematch because he wouldn’t take it, and that you didn’t deserve a world title match because you hadn’t earned it. That you were going to do that by winning the battle royal. I guess the office took you at your word and want you to earn it.
[He takes a deep breath, changing to a cross-legged position]
Karl: I want to make one thing clear to you before we get to Aggression. To both of you. Spare me the history lessons. Save your breath trying to regale Otaku and I with lore of your career, Eli, and Aaron, don’t try the plucky up and comer bit. Nothing that happens before Aggression 76 means anything to me and in the last two and half years, that’s rubbed off on Otaku a bit, too.
I’ll be honest, Aaron, I know. I’ve wrestled him and he has a tonne of potential. Eli? I’ll be honest, don’t know your history, and don’t really care. Yes, I’ll watch the tapes to see if I can see a pattern, your strengths and weaknesses, but save that for me to find out rather than giving any kind of Cameron Cruise or Rocko Daymon-esque diatribe about past battles fought and glories won.
There’s only one truth at the moment that concerns us. You two want a shot at the world tag team titles. You want to earn it, and you’re going to have to earn it the hard way.
[He nods over to his right, the camera PANNING to show Otaku kicking a heavy bag]
Karl:[off camera] The moments in the ring are what’s going to either give you what you want, or close the door on it.
[Brown comes back into shot as Otaku carries on with the bag]
Karl: Now that’s out of the way, I could bore you into submission with my usual bit about determination, heart, passion.
Otaku: The power of youth!!
Karl: And that. But I’m more interested to see what you two bring to the table. Eli, I’m guessing, you’re hoping to use your experience to bring out the potential in Aaron. The potential I saw in that triple threat match and he’s been trying to showcase. Sometimes it takes an experienced hand, or a cooler head, to bring out the best in someone.
I doubt you just want that warm, fuzzy feeling. You wouldn’t come back to a business that wears out the joints, damages your back, causes you to wake after every match with aches and pains that you thought you’d gotten over when the growth spurts finished, just for the feeling of giving someone their chance.
There’s a certain glow to being called Champion. Even more so in the tag team division where you know it’s not just you in there. If you don’t put your all into a single’s match, it’s only you you’re letting down. Do that in a tag team match, and it’s different. It’s not you you’re letting down, but us. There’s added pressure. It’s why new year resolutions to go to the gym and become healthier often fail, because you’re only failing yourself. If you have someone waiting on you, someone to push you, to drive you, you get that initial kick up the backside in the morning, and someone making you push that little bit harder each time.
It makes you a better person. And being champion? Well, that’s the icing on the cake. It shows that your team is firing on all cylinders. To come back time and time again shows that you’re no fluke. It also reflects very well on you as an individual, showing that you play well with others, that you’re a team player, able to work for the greater good.
Otaku:[holding the bag] Have you been smoking?
Karl: No, reading.
Otaku: Oh dear… Carnegie?
Karl: It passes flights.
Otaku: Whatever. [He swings the bag, smashing at it with kicks and elbows]
Karl: Excuse him, it is his time to train.
I’m not going to insult your intelligence. You know the size of the challenge facing you as much as we know the mountain we’ve got to climb to walk away with the win. This may not be a heated, life-and-death struggle, but you can bet it’s going to be us at our best. Have you got what it takes to earn that title match?
We’ll see. And if you do… well, we’ll have to train harder and give even more next time, won’t we?
Voice: Next time on Animezing Dragon…
Otaku: Hey, Otakuites! Otaku here! Next time on Animezing Dragon, Dragon-domo and I rest up from our long journey in a small village. But is everything what it appears? What is that inn-keep doing? Is that a gold tooth?!
Next time on Animezing Dragon, No Rest for the Dragon. Or Otaku! See you then!
Well, that's all right, Since when has a rhetorical question in this business been taken seriously?
The day before the first day, Eli Flair created God.
And on the eight day, Eli Flair killed God.
That's not blasphemous, by the way - that's an age joke. I'm fuckin' old.
Here's the thing, guys. I know you're expecting me to come out and be all 'What, you don't know me? How dare you not know me!' and you're expecting Aaron Jones to be all 'You don't know what I can do so you won't see me coming.'
Clever to cut that off at the pass.
Well, let me both fill your expectations and blow 'em outta the water at the same time.
What you don't know about my history is fifteen World Championships, over forty secondary titles, and a career of two decades that can only be described with one word.
What you ain't expectin' is that I know, more than you - the fact that these accomplishments mean precisely dick.
What matters is that you guys've got the belts 'n before Jonesey 'n I can take 'em from ya, we've gotta beat'cha one extra time.
You hold all the cards, guys. You've got the advantage. Not only are you the champs, but Jones and I haven't ever teamed up.
So what makes me think we can win?
Like you said.
Aaron Jones has a ton'a potential.
All he needs is someone t'have his back while he lets it out.
I've been in the ring with him too. Multiple times.
Here's that history again, so you can ignore this: after twenty years, I can see where he needs to shore up his offense and defense, and I can see where he can just tweak a few things and be unstoppable.
I guarantee Aaron Jones to have championship gold around his waist by the time Wrestleverse is over.
How's that for confidence, gentlemen?
You've got the advantage in teamwork: you know each other better than any other team in this company, with the possible exception of the mixed teams in the semi - main.
The funny thing?
I don't really care about your teamwork. I dare say I care less about your teamwork than you do about my career up 'till now.
You asked me, Karl... why I'm here. Is it for the warm, fuzzy feeling'a helpin' Jonesey reach his potential?
You talk about the joint wear, the back stiffness, the aches 'n pains as if they're a burden. Are they, Karl?
Then you don't belong here.
They're a reminder that'ch'er still alive. They're a reminder that you can still go out to the ring'n make a difference.
Make an impact.
You can say whatever y'want about the teams you've beat since Unleashed, but the fact remains you're only as good as your competition, otherwise you're just carryin' around a gold belt, waitin' for someone t'take it from ya. And I think one thing I've earned in the past twenty years is a sense'a talent... 'n the losers you've faced off with since Unleashed are substandard 'n beneath the title'a Number One Contender.
Can't guarantee anything that's gonna happen, but one thing.
You're both in for the fight'a your life.
And then you've gotta do it again at Wrestleverse.
If y'can't hack it... there's the door. We won't miss you.
<i>(We fade in on the interior of the gym that’s been the setting for so many such promos. On a bulletin board in the background is a low-res, but still visible with the camera focused in close, image from the Aggression 75 battle royal. It’s a screen-grab of Aaron Jones connecting with a Pele kick on Malcolm Joseph-Jones. A second or two after the image comes into the focus, the camera zooms out a little, and Jones steps into view)</i>
<b>Aaron Jones:</b> I never quite know how best to celebrate the small victories.
That’s not just in wrestling, either. I’m talking about marginally pleasing a tough-to-please boss or coach, or fixing something I screwed up, or bringing a C-minus up to a B in a difficult class.
It’s success, but I know I can do better, and it’s hard to forget it, even for a fleeting second.
I realize that every time I come out here, I look on the bright side, but that’s not exactly a celebration. I suppose it’s just my sunny disposition, or something like that.
As long as I’ve kept at this, I must have a pretty positive outlook on life, right?
That’s all to say that I’m not quite sure what to make of Aggression 75.
Obviously, I didn’t hate making it to the final four. I got to go toe-to-toe with a lot of different competitors, I got to try out some new moves. I might have even turned a head or two.
I certainly got Eli Flair’s attention, which is something.
Even if I didn’t get any eliminations – unless you count one-thirteenth of an elimination of Magnus Destructo – it’s still more success than I might have seen in a singles match that I didn’t win.
But I could have done better.
I’m not competing for an EPW Title shot at Aggression 76. That shot-at-a-shot was the prize we were fighting for and I didn’t win it.
It’s not that Cameron Cruise and Rocko Daymon don’t deserve the opportunity. It’s not that I have a problem with pursuing the Tag Team Titles. The latter, at least, is unquestionably a good thing.
It’s just hard to know how to celebrate it when there was a greater prize to be had.
There are worse things in the world than not knowing how to celebrate a minor victory.
Until I’m tipped off to a more appropriate way to go about it, I’ll keep doing what I planned to do: Use it as a means to get closer to the prize the next time.
At Aggression 76, that prize is a shot at the Tag Team Titles.
It’s a substantial opportunity for me. I’m fortunate to have Animezing Dragons – a couple of guys not known for taking unnecessary liberties with their opponents – on the opposite side of the ring, and I’m even more fortunate to have a living legend like Eli Flair on my side.
And even though I didn’t win, I’m fortunate to have the battle royal under my belt.
If nothing else, it showed me that this seems to work fairly well.
<i>(He gestures up at the screen-grab of himself delivering the Pele kick)</i>
<b>Jones:</b> Who knows? It may just be my ticket to a real celebration.
<i>(Jones looks into the camera for another second before – now having the use of more sophisticated video equipment – we cut to black without his having to come around the side and turn it off)</i>
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