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[CD] Dying a winner


Jan 1, 2000
San Francisco, CA
* The First character development RP.

(FADEIN: The First sitting in a sportsbook in Vegas, in the background we see Green Machine at a window putting in a bet.)

FIRST: (Narrating) About a year ago, I saw Greenie, he’s ubiquitous in the wrestling industry, a gadfly always scamming, always looking for a way to make a buck, and more than willing to gamble other people’s money. He had just hit some monster parlay and the teller was counting off a huge amount of hundred dollar bills. As he collected the pile of cash and tied it up in a series of rubber bands I just had to bust his chops. I don’t know why I felt this way, because I’m normally not somebody who cuts people down, but with Greenie it seems almost universal to give him a jibe of some kind, cause he’s such a nut.

“Big win huh?” I said as I walked over to him. We’d seen each other a few times at indy shows that he’d promote or in Empire, where he was an on-screen talent. He looked up at me with a broad smile and said “Won money is always better then earned money.” As he stuffed the wad of hundreds into his pocket.

“What good does that money do you if you get hit by a bus on your way home?” I asked. I just had to harass him, but to my surprise he was rather quick with a reply. “Then I die a winner” he said. “Sadly that’s not gonna happen and odds are I’m gonna blow all this cash, but for now, I’m a winner, and well, we’ll see if the dice treat me right.” And with that he was off to a craps table.

I think about what he said and think about last night and if I’d never woken up.

I’d have died a winner.

Muse and I landed in Vegas, we got married, she wore all black, I wore all white, cause we’re edgy and all that jazz. After that we hit a tattoo parlor (The camera pans behind First as he rests his hands behind his head, we can see a “M” on his left ring finger.) I got my first ink done, Muse’s name on my ring finger, she tried to talk me into an ankh on my shoulder, but I resisted. “Oh you’ll be an ink addict soon enough, you’ll have full sleeves on both arms and stuff on your back, and it’ll be so sexy.” She told me. She then got “First” tattooed around her ring finger.

Then off we went to a casino, we played Roulette and the ball went our way, the table was jumping, people there were gambling big and some were winning along with us. It was magical, we were in love, we were winning, we were happy. I could not have imagined a better night spent with my woman, now my wife. We lost a couple spins in a row and Muse decided in the most unsubtle of terms that it was time for us to retreat back to our room, and so we did. If only the story ended when we finally went to sleep.

I’d have died a winner.

But I woke up, Muse was in the shower, I debated jumping in the shower with her, and if I had, I’d have been kept blissfully unaware of what was going on. But for some reason I looked for my phone and when I found it, I had 25 text messages and 10 voice mails. I turned on the TV quickly. CNN didn’t have a graphic talking about some lunatic taking a shot at Obama or some major landmark being hit by an act of terrorism, so it wasn’t that, time to check the messages.

It turned out that Will, the man Rozy had been sleeping with since before we got married, and the biological father to the child I thought my was daughter had lost his mind and beaten up Rozy on the front lawn of what used to be Rozy and I’s house. He then dragged her into the house by her arm, neighbors saw what happened, and the police were called and now they were in hour 6 of a stand-off. Police trying to talk Will out of killing my ex-wife and my daughter.

My daughter.

Well not really my daughter, but I raised her as if she was mine, nearly 2 years old now. I felt sick just thinking about the whole ordeal. Muse came out of the shower only wearing a towel, which was a rather impressive display of modesty for her. She knew from the look on my face that things were bad, when I told her she couldn’t stop crying, she blamed us for it causing it all, making Will snap. Blamed herself for us being in Vegas, thousands of miles away from where this crisis was happening, as if we could do anything about it.

“What would I do? Spit green mist in Will’s face and then hit him with a Soulbreaker?” I joked, but she wasn’t having any of it, she was irrational and beyond reasoning with. We sat around for an hour or so waiting for updates, but nothing was happening. Finally Muse got up and said “Fuck this, I can’t stand it, I’m going to go play some roulette and get drunk.” And with that she stormed out of the room. I didn’t chase after her all that would happen is a fight that would only get ugly.

I would have died a winner.

And so I too left my hotel room and now I’m sitting here at a sportsbook, Green Machine had texted me, he was in Vegas as usual and had heard about the problem and wanted to know if he could help. Tragically it appeared that his old buddy Doc Silver didn’t have a private SWAT team to handle such issues, so all Greenie did to help was distract me from the situation by wasting time gambling on dog races, he’d ask me for some amount of money, 210 dollars, 140 dollars, whatever, and I’d just hand it to him, he’d talk about trifectas, quinellas, exactas, supers, wheels, boxes, the gibberish of a hardened gambler is his language. After he had my money he’d leave and return with a bunch of betting slips and tell me to root for a dog or a series of dogs. Then the race would go off and we’d win just enough to make a little profit, or lose the whole bet when our dog did nothing. I really didn’t care if we won or lost cause it was more entertaining to watch Greenie’s reactions to the races than anything else. He was always talking about a dog 'picking up' another dog or screaming about a dog being bumped, then in another race he just kept screaming “Die you fucking 6!”. I wondered how he would feel if the six dog did in fact drop dead on the track, but then I figured he’s such a sick degenerate that he’d just be happy he won his bet, the six dog’s life meant nothing compared to Greenie edging out a profit.

Then my phone rang. The crisis had ended, the police dropped off some food for Will and he stupidly ate it and fell victim to the drugs they laced the food with. Rozy was pretty banged up, broken jaw, dislocated shoulder, but nothing that would be permanent damage. My daughter, or whatever she is, was unharmed.

As I thanked my parents for the good news, I texted Muse and told her what had happened. I really didn’t know what was going to happen in the future, Rozy’s parents and mine would care for Elle while Rozy was in the hospital I figured, I should be involved. Or should I? After the ugliness of the divorce and the paternity of Elle was confirmed does Rozy even want me near her child?

While I was debating these questions suddenly Greenie started screaming. I turned and saw him fist pumping and celebrating. I thought for a moment we’d won enough that I wouldn’t have to worry about wrestling anymore, but it wasn’t that big a hit, hell it just barely got me to even for all the other unwise investments Greenie had made with my money, but it sure as hell made him happy, and I felt a little bit better about things to.

Muse texted me back, she was grateful to hear about what happened, we made plans to eat at the Wynn in a couple hours. I felt a giant weight off my shoulders about the whole situation. I knew the future would be tricky, but it always is. I sat back in my chair and I thought about what it meant to die a winner, what it meant to be a father, what any of us understand about this world or the next. Then I put all those thoughts out of my head.

Because Greenie and I have a Trifecta box with the 1, 3, and 7, and we really need the six to fucking die.


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