Title: The Road Back.
Featuring: Sam Horry
Date: Two weeks ago
Location: MGM Grand

MGM Grand—Las Vegas.

 

Sam’s entrance to the cage had been magnificent.   He was carried in on a royal sedan, while some of the Las Vegas showgirls fanned him with giant golden fans.  The reigning, defending, undisputed WMC, IFA, WFO, and F!ght Magazine World Champion took it all in stride.  His elaborate entrances are customary, as his pro wrestling background dictates that a champion should have an air of showmanship to highlight a title defense.    

He’d been an unlikely contender for the Mixed Martial Arts’ organizational top crowns, as he had been largely relegated to ‘that wrestler’.  His antics both in and out of the wrestling ring, ranged from mockery, to concern that the reckless former Defiant, was an out-of-control circus show determined to soil the "purity" of Mixed Martial Arts.

Wanting to humiliate the former Trios title holder, the #1 ranked contender for the WMC, IFA, and WFO, Augusto Vargas begged Sam for a fight that saw Sam submit Augusto via Kimura and by Anaconda Choke in their rematch.  A flash knockout via roundhouse kick to the temple of the World Champion Warren ‘Chip’ Harrington, not only gained Sam the WMC, IFA and WFO belts, but begrudgingly set Sam as the premier athlete in the sport.  F!ght Magazine, crowned Sam as the World Champion when his Vale Tudo background surfaced, establishing Sam as the lineal World Champion.  

His momentum continued, including a 4th round TKO of former Champion Warren ‘Chip’ Harrington winning ‘Fight of the Year’ honors.  The rigors of pro wrestling conditioned Sam to embark on a grueling defense schedule fighting every 6 or so weeks.

Tonight, DeShawn “One, Two” Jenkins, a severe underdog, through limited actual engagement which is a nice way of saying, ‘running away’ had managed to do what none of Sam’s opponents had done: survive, and not just survive, but with a chorus of boos cascading down was declared the winner and new World Champion by a stunning unanimous decision.

Sam shoulder bumped promoter Duke Washington as he left the ring, with Jeanie in tow.

 

[_+_]

 

Earlier that week.

 

“…I just don’t know if I agree with this, Sam.”  Jeanie said to Sam from their front row seats.  “Those MMA governing bodies want you under contract to them and them alone.  Duke wants you under contract.  And since you haven’t given them any indication of where you’re leaning, showing up at a pro wrestling event is just throwing fuel on the fire. “

“Duke need me, baby-girl.”  Sam turned towards her with a smile.  He put his arm around her chair.  “No contract talks, no money talks, lets just enjoy ourselves tonight.”

“But you know how they feel about wrestling,”   Jeanie pressed.  “They barely accept you, and you’re the champ.  So what’re….”

Sam raised his index finger to interrupt her sentence.   “What’d you just say?”

“What?  You’re the champ?”

“Yeah.”  Sam flashed an electric grin.  “Say that again for me, mami.”

“Wow Sam, really?” Jeanie folded her arms.

Sam squeezed her leg, winking at her.  “Come on, Jeanie.  Say it again.”

“You’re such a brat, you know that?”  She shook her head, then rolled her eyes.  “You’re the champ, Sam.”

‘The Champ’ pulled her in, tickling her; kissing her right underneath her ear.

“Dejame, Sam.”  She giggled as the bell rang.  “Mira, we’re in public!”

No sooner than when she finished saying that, did Lance Warner approach Sam and Jeanie.  Sam stood up and opened his blazer to reveal the ‘#HailtheQueenRT’ logo on his t-shirt.  A small “Horry” chant started, and Sam chopped a fan across his chest, before hi-fiving that same fan and his friends.  

Seeing the gleam in her client’s eyes, Jeanie mumbled to herself.

“Here we go again.”

 

[_+_]

 

Sam emerged from the shower and into the silence of the locker room.  He sat there in his towel, staring at the championship belts which were now just props, as their value had transferred to DeShawn “One, Two” Jenkins.  Jeanie let herself in eventually standing directly in front of him.

“Sometimes I’m right, Sam.  They saw you on DEFIANCE and went into panic mode.  But this here tonight is bull.”  Jeanie began.  Her eyes caught his.  “Now look, I can draw up paperwork.  We can fight this in court, I’ll—“

The former champion shook his head.  “Nah, I’m good.”  He offered a weak smile.

Jeanie sat on Sam’s toweled lap.

“You sure you’re okay?”  She ran her fingertips on the back of his bald head.

Sam nodded.

“Okay, so Duke wants a meeting between you, me, and him this week.”  Jeanie stood up and adjusted her skirt.  “We cool to set this up?”

“Yeah.”  Sam stared at the now meaningless championship belts.

Jeanie pulled out her tablet, and strummed her fingers on it.  Sam grabbed his clothes and began to get dressed.  Soon he was wearing a black button-down shirt, and gray slacks, and black shoes.

“You with Sam, Jeanie?”  came from Jeanie’s tablet.

“He’s right here, Ryan.  Go ‘head.”  Jeanie turned the face of the tablet to Sam.

“Yo, I just saw what happened, dude.  That’s bullshit.”  Ryan said to a nodding Sam.  “He fuckin’ ran from you the whole night; he didn’t even get a takedown!  All they’re talking about on the forums and ESEN is how you got robbed, man.  F!ght Magazine already issued a statement saying they still recognize you as World Champion.”

“Silver linings, I guess.”  Sam shrugged his shoulders.  “Me and Jeanie are gonna get outta here.  We’ll probably be out there sometime next week.”

“Keep your head up, homie.  Peace.”  Ryan ended the call.

 

Sam and Jeanie headed into media-heavy hallway.

 
[_+_]
 
 
"Sam? Over here, Sam! Can you talk about tonight's judges decision?" A reporter asked.
 
"Are you looking for a rematch?" Another reporter called out.
 
"What was with the shoulder bump to Duke Washington? Was he in on tonight's decision?"
 
Sam did his best to ignore the questions as he and Jeanie navigated the hallway.
 
"Hey Sam, there's always DEFIANCE.... y'know if you're willing to perform better than you did here tonight."
 
 
Enter Jake Donovan.
 
 
Jake and his Cheshire Cat-grin stared down, the brewing storm that is, Sam Horry.


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