By: Ricky Rodriguez
Date: 25th Aug 2021
As soon as he finished filming for his Margarita Mix promotional video against Brett Daniels and Chris Madison, Ricky Rodriguez stepped off of that stage and into the backstage area. He walked through those hallways before arriving at the dressing room that was assigned to him. Once he opened that door, he was greeted with open arms by his confidant, Big Ass Bobby. The much larger man firmly patted Ricky on the back, a look of impression showing on his features.
Bobby: You’re sounding better and better every time you’re in front of a camera. Really finding your rhythm a lot quicker than I see most people do.
A look of pride grew across the young man. Nodding his head firmly, Ricky listened intently as Bobby continued to speak.
Bobby: That was what got me. I can wrestle for days but put me in front of a camera and that’s where I really struggle. But with you, there was some struggle in the beginning but you’re just getting better and better. And now look at you, you’re right around the corner from your first professional championship match. Not just that but you and Sebastian win this next match and you’re in the finals. Win that? Everybody will know the name Ricky Rodriguez.
Once that last word left Bobby’s mouth, Ricky nodded his head once again. Taking a step back, Ricky took a seat on that black leather chair, adjusting in it to get a bit more comfortable. His head resting against one arm while his legs laid draped across the other.
Before Ricky could get too comfortable, a notification sound emitted from his phone. Digging his hand into the pocket of those black jeans, he pulled out that phone so he could see what it was. After reading it, Ricky slowly nodded his head before returning it to his pocket. Turning his head, he looked over at Bobby with an indifferent expression showing across his face.
Ricky: It’s official. Amari dropped. In a Triple Threat Match for the title now.
Bobby nodded his head in acknowledgment. He walked over before ruffling the hair of Ricky causing him to laugh out, knocking his hand away. A look of seriousness took over Bobby’s face as he focused on Ricky.
Bobby: The match doesn’t matter, it never did. Just the goal. The title. That’s where your head needs to be. It’s okay to do your research, know your enemy and all that. But the only thing that matters is you walking out with that on your shoulder. How you do it? Means to an end. Don’t think twice. No hesitation. You take every opening, every advantage you can. You do whatever you have to do in order to win this match.
While Bobby was giving his speech, Ricky had raised up to a seated position, crossing his legs beneath him. He listened to every word, the determination growing with each moment that passed. Once Bobby finished, Ricky nodded his head firmly before getting up off of that couch and onto his feet.
Ricky: You’re a hundred percent right. This is my shot and I’m not gonna miss.
A look of impression flashed across the face of Bobby as he slapped Ricky on the shoulder.
Bobby: That’s what I want to hear. I need to head out, though. Finish up here and we’ll link up later and close a few places out.
The two shared a nod and a high five before Bobby made his way out of that dressing room. As soon as that door closed, Bobby adjusted his collar and began to walk down that hallway. Before he could make exit from the building, his phone began to ring. Pulling it out from his pocket, he saw the caller ID displayed across the screen of the phone. A smile grew across his features as he answered the call while walking.
Bobby: Alessa, hi.
The inaudible voice on the other end of that call asked but a single question. Just the sound of it caused the smile of Bobby to broaden as he stepped out into the parking garage.
Bobby: Things are going exactly as they should be. It shouldn’t be long now.
Within that increasingly better decorated apartment, Ricky Rodriguez was on the ass end of a phone conversation with Austin Ramsey. After ending the call, Ricky pocketed the phone before walking over towards that living room. As he looked upon that new black and red leather couch, loveseat, and chair set he had just got delivered, a look of impression grew across his face. Taking a seat on that couch, he thought back to a question Austin had asked himself, Samuel, and Laroux.
Ricky had played it off, like it really wasn’t a thing but truth be told, the whole situation was a disaster. The way Austin came at Ricky and the things he had said had almost brought them to blows on more than one occasion. However, all it took to quell the situation was for the two of them to just talk to one another, as adults.
Thankfully, that was the case and the two of them were able to hash things out. The phone call they just had was one of their venting sessions, Ricky being the one who needed to vent. Once, they hurled the worst insults at one another and now they were helping one another get through those times when their thoughts just get to be too much.
The look on Ricky’s face showed that the problem was solved. Those thoughts were taken care of and now Ricky could get his focus back to where it needed to be: On the now changed Brooklyn Championship Match. Scooting to the end of that couch, Ricky opened up the laptop on the coffee table in front of it and set up the webcam to start to record. That was where the feed began.
As soon as it did, Ricky slapped his hands together and began rubbing them on each other. A grin broke out across his face as he reclined back against that couch and started up with what he had to say.
Ricky Rodriguez: First and foremost, I have something to say to my opponents, both Mason Alexander Vanderbilt and ‘The Enforcer’ Anthony Cross. See, once I knew this was official, I knew there was something you both needed to say to me. But the kinda guy I am? I don’t need to hear it. Instead, I’ll just say it: You’re welcome.
The grin Ricky wore grew much larger as those last two words rolled off of his tongue. He brought his hands up, lacing his fingers behind his head as he rested back against that nice new couch.
Ricky Rodriguez: See, the match that was signed was Ricky Rodriguez versus Amari Kent for the Brooklyn Championship. Amari bailed, that’s on him. If he couldn’t show up for the match, that’s a forfeit. But more importantly, that would’ve made it MY title. But see, those fans, they wanted to see me at my best. They wanted to see me win my biggest match yet. They wanted to see me get that big win and capture my first championship at this level.
Who am I to deny them that? I mean, it is our job to give those people what they want. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do what we love to do. Whether they boo me or not, believe me, I know exactly how important those people are. It’s on us to give them everything they want to see. And what they want to see is Ricky Rodriguez get announced as the Brooklyn Championship after such an awesome match. That’s exactly what they’re going to get.
A slow nod was given off by Ricky. Relaxing even further on that couch, his legs spreading apart while his bare feet rested upon that carpeted floor. There was a moment of down time following his loss in the Margarita Mix so Ricky was making the most of it, bumming it up in a white tank top and black gym shorts. Unlacing those fingers, he reached over to grab the silver dab pen off of the end table next to the couch and took a long drag off of it.
Ricky Rodriguez: Sure, holding the championship woulda been great either way but defeating the two of you? That’s gonna be so much better. That’s just the kinda guy I am. Call me arrogant. Call me a smart mouthed little punk. Call me whatever but never doubt my fight. I don’t care who it is or what they’ve done here, there, or anywhere, I will get right up in your face and I will fight you with every ounce of fight I got in me. Don’t believe it? Look at my performance in this last Margarita Mix match I was in.
My partner was down and out. Choked out. I mean, eyelids straight shut. It was essentially a Handicap Match. But did that stop me? Fuck no, it didn’t. Instead, I came in and I showed out. I gave TWO Hall of Famers damn near more fight than they could handle. Lemme assure you, they’ll remember who the fuck I am. Just like you two will. And unlike those two? Y’all ain’t walking out with anything but empty hands and unfulfilled expectations.
As he talked, Ricky would take another couple drags off of that pen and the effects showed more and more with every moment that passed. His eyelids lowered more and more with each word he spoke. The body language he displayed was the epitome of relaxation.
Ricky Rodriguez: This is a huge upgrade for the two of you. Instead of y’all kicking the shit out of one another for just a chance, now you get to fight for the real thing. That’s something I’ve been ready for from the go. Before? I needed to send Amari a message. It wasn’t just about taking his title, it was about more than that to me. I’m not to be ignored. If you have a problem with me then bring that problem to me, don’t whisper shit behind my back. That’s a bitch move.
But now? I don’t need to send any messages. I have a whole different point to prove and all I gotta do in order to prove it is to just pin one of you two. And if history tells us anything? It tells us that pinning either one of you is something that’s very easily done. But that is another story for another time.
He flashed a wink towards that webcam as he leaned forward, closing that laptop and ending the feed. It wouldn’t be but a moment before the next one picked up. Right outside of a local comic shop, there was a pretty large crowd of people waiting patiently. Toxic Tag is right around the corner and in an attempt to build hype even more than it already was, there was a signing event today at this very comic store.
A rather unassuming black four door car pulled up, catching the attention of everyone attending. The vehicle turned off and out stepped none other than one of the men fighting for the Brooklyn Championship: Ricky Rodriguez!
There was a rather mixed reaction from that crowd but it didn’t shake the confidence of Ricky in even the slightest amount. Instead, that smirk shined bright as Ricky looked out across that crowd. He was decked out in a pair of faded, tattered denim jeans with a solid black t-shirt and a black leather jacket over it. To top his look off, he also wore a pair of black sunglasses.
That smirk of his only grew as he took another look out at that crowd. Turning his attention to that car, he stepped up onto the bumper before hoisting himself up onto the hood. From there, he carefully made his way up onto the top of that car. The view always was better from the top, after all. Ricky brought his arms out, almost presenting himself which made the cheers more electric and made the boos more hate filled.
No matter the reaction, Ricky loved it. Letting his arms stay extended for a few moments as he literally basked in the feeling of it all. Finally letting them drop, he began to speak up.
Ricky Rodriguez: Next time y’all see me like this, I’m going to be a..champion. The Brooklyn Champion, as a matter of fact. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, they’re both some pretty big dudes. But that doesn’t dissuade me, nah not at all. If anything, it pushes me. It pushes me to find ways I can use my skills to counteract that size difference. I’m not gonna get too into that tho, I wouldn’t want them to know what to expect.
Nah, this is gonna be a surprise for those two. They won’t see it coming. All I need is that slightest opening, that one inch and I’ll take a mile. I’ll take any hope they have of winning this championship and let them know who the hell Ricky Rodriguez is. And lemme tell you. That? That is something neither one of you will ever forget.
Whether loved or hated, those in attendance were eating up everything Ricky had to say, hanging on his every word even.
Ricky Rodriguez: But just who am I facing? Let’s start with Mav. Mason Alexander Vanderbilt. Which, by the way, is the most generic rich boy name I have ever heard in my LIFE. I mean, that’s exactly what he is. You see the type come and go, in this business and they’re all exactly the same. Mason ain’t any bit different than them. Might have a different face but everything else? No different.
Sounds the same. Talks the same. Acts the same. And I see Mav making the same kind of exit they all make. It takes a bit longer for some than it does for others but eventually all the rich boys learn the most important lesson y’all will ever learn: No amount of money makes a fist to the face hurt less. And this match? Consider it a crash course.
Taking a couple steps around the top of that car, Ricky laughed out, a look of disappointment flashing across his face.
Ricky Rodriguez: See, you’ve been here before, haven’t you Mav? You went in there with Amari on the first Venom for this same title. And what happened? Amari put you down. Amari was better than you. He walked out with that Brooklyn Championship and left you in the dust. Now here you are, clawing for that second chance.
First chance I had? I put Amari on his ass. I laid his ass out and got that one, two, three.
As he spoke those last three words, he would bring his hand up, holding up a finger for each number he counted off.
Ricky Rodriguez: As a matter of fact, Amari ain’t the only one who proved better than you, is he? Nah, see I did a little lookin around and lo and behold: Enforcer himself has handed your ass to you. The one person you have beaten here? Dude is happy bout bein a loser. He’s turned losin into somethin to be happy about. How are you gonna brag bout beatin a guy like that? Let’s be real here. You can’t.
Just listen to how it sounds. Oh dude, I just beat the total shit outta some guy who gets off on gettin his ass kicked. See, that’s just not a good look at all.
His expression straightened out, giving off the whole yikes feeling as he walked towards the edge of that roof. Lowering himself to a seated position, Ricky laughed out.
Ricky Rodriguez: And don’t think I’ve forgot about you, Anthony Cross, The Enforcer, Sasha Foote’s whippin boy. But that last one only applies when Ryder ain’t there to save you from the big bad Sasha. She’s really got your number, doesn’t she, Enforcer? Korrupt. Dude’s put you down just the same as Sash did. Remind me, what happened when I stepped into the ring with Korrupt? Oh, that’s right! I kicked the shit out of him.
You’re called Enforcer, for a good reason. That’s exactly what you are, an Enforcer. A tool. Used to strengthen someone else. That’s where your talent is, Anthony, backin someone else up. But when it comes to backin yourself up? The cracks in that armor show. Sasha proved that. Korrupt proved that. And I’m going to prove that. You’re gonna fail winnin this title just like you failed winnin the Pride Championship.
Bringing his arms back behind him, he pressed his open palms onto the surface of that vehicle’s roof. Leaning back against them, he looked to the left and then to the right. Pushing off and landing on his feet, Ricky let the bulk of his weight be supported by that car as he leaned against it.
Ricky Rodriguez: Neither one of them wants this more than I do. Neither one of them are hungrier than I am, coming into this match. I have so much more to prove than they do. And the people I have to prove myself to? The motivation I have for this match has only grown more and more since the start. When that bell rings, you two are gonna experience somethin you’ve never experienced before.
Hate it if you want but the confidence I got? It can’t ever be shaken. Not by just another generic rich boy. Not against a bodyguard pretending he can be successful on his own. Not. Anybody. Like I said before, the match bein changed doesn’t change anything but the match. The result will be as it was always going to be..
Shoving off of that car, he brought his hands up before cupping them at the sides of his mouth and yelling out loudly, at the tops of his lungs.
Ricky Rodriguez: Your winner and NEWWWW Brooklyn Champion..
Letting his hands drop, he quickly turns to face the man who had been recording all of this. Walking up to him, he grabbed the camera by both sides and forced focus on the growing seriousness in his features.
Ricky Rodriguez: Ricky Rodriguez. Get ready. It’s my time now.
Releasing that camera, Ricky turned his back to it. Without speaking another word, the arrogant young man made his way inside of the store to get ready for the signing. As soon as that door closed, the scene faded away.