Somethin hasta change.
By: Ricky Rodriguez
Writing Prompt: No
Date: 31st Oct 2021
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘Have you ever just felt..lost? Not like physically lost, I know where I’m at right now. But like..’
The body of Ricky Rodriguez floated atop the surface of the water filling the pool he was in. His eyes were half open and gazing up at the clear blue sky. A light breeze blew through the gated area causing Ricky to sigh out softly.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘For the entire first season, from Blood Money, Toxic Tag, and to Ascension, I’ve made mistake after mistake after mistake. I’ve put my trust in the wrong people. I’ve second guessed the one I should have been listenin to from the start. I fucked up in and out of that ring and look where it got me..
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Completely and totally fucked? Used, abused, and tossed to the side? Lied to? Abandoned? As your friend, there’s a pretty long list of things that can follow that statement.’
As Ricky was enjoying the calming feeling brought about by the pool water, Bobby had chosen to lay sprawled out in a large lounger chair. A pair of black sunglasses covered his eyes while the rest of his attire consisted of just a pair of tropical designed swim shorts. After hearing the words of his oldest friend, Ricky transitioned from that lying position into one that had him upright, allowing him to shoot a sideways glare at Bobby.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘Tell me how you really feel, why dontcha?’
Propping himself up ever so slightly, with his elbows supporting him, he let those sunglasses drop just below eye level, returning that glare in Ricky’s direction.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘You put yourself into the position to get fucked over by Joe and he took full advantage of that. He said so himself, he was going to do whatever it took to take it to Sahara and anyone in their right mind knows that how things went down with you at Ascension really hit her where it counts.’
There was a silence emanating from Ricky as Bobby spoke those words. That was clearly a touchy subject with Ricky. He knew the shape, both physically and mentally, Sahara was in after the event. It was something Ricky had no idea how to approach.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘And when it came down to it? Look at the true colors Paul showed. He knew he was fucked and instead of going down with a fight, like you, Toddy, that bitch Michelle, and even Joe did, he just gave up. Every one of you fought with everything you had in you and Paul chose to protect his own ass. What kind of leader was that? People can talk all they want. Make all the promises in the world. They can call you family. A little brother. They can tell you that you have nothing to worry about. Straight up lie to your face.’
Pushing himself even further up, Bobby moved into a full seated position. He brought his legs up and crossed them in front of himself, sitting on them slightly. The expression Ricky wore showed exactly how much it bothered him to hear those words, especially from someone who has the place in his life that Bobby has.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘But not me. Those people, they’ll throw you under the bus without a fucking second of hesitation to save themselves or to benefit themselves in the slightest. I’m not one of those people. When your parents thought they couldn’t have children, they took me in. Then their miracle happened and it became my duty to keep you safe. To make sure you were having the best life possible. Like I told you, Ricky. We tried your way. I’ve sat back and let you do everything how you’ve felt you should do.’
With every word Bobby spoke, Ricky listened more and more intently despite how rough it was to hear. Once he finished, Ricky nodded his head knowingly.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘You’re right, I know. Sahara was right. I’ve listened to and put trust into all the wrong people. I’ve said it over and over again.’
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Exactly, you have. But now you have to stop saying it and actually doing something about it. Show that you’re not going to make the same mistakes you did before. Show you’re better than that now. What you need to do is focus on what’s in front of you. You have to be able to block out all the other bullshit and do what you need to do.’
Parting his lips, as if he was going to say something, there was a moment of hesitation which caused Bobby to speak back up.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘See, that’s just what I’m talking about. There should be no hesitation. No doubt in your mind about what you need to do. Take that match with Todrick you just had for the Manhattan Championship. You went out there, looking to have the match of the night with one of your best friends. That’s where you fucked up. You should have been out there to win that championship by any means necessary.’
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘I tried my best.’
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Bullshit, Ricky.’
The sudden interruption caused Ricky to close his eyes, a soft sigh slipping free from behind his lips. Bobby shook his head before scooting down towards the edge of that lounge chair.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘I saw more than a couple moments where you could have capitalized on Todrick and you just chose not to. Respect and honor are one thing but are you really putting them ahead of your success? Are you really going to hold yourself back like that?’
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘This isn’t like how it was before. This is a whole new stage, a whole different kind of people we’re dealing with.’
Big Ass Bobby: ‘So?’
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘So? So what if I’m not good enough to be at this level? What if that is as far as I’m gonna get? I’ve thought bout that a lot and it scares the fuck outta me. What if that is as good as I can be? What if I don’t belong here? Should I just pack it up and head back home?’
With that, Bobby stood up from his seat before walking across that concrete floor until he got to the edge of the pool. Taking a seat there, he let his bare feet dip into the comforting waters as he spoke up.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Thinking like that is exactly why you’re in the spot you’re in, Ricky. I see how hard you work. I see the effort you put into this and there’s absolutely no reason why you should have lost at Ascension. Like you said, you’re putting your trust into the wrong people. The only person you need to trust in this business is yourself. You think Todrick would have hesitated a second before putting you down? You already know what Joe did. And don’t even get me started on your boy Austin.’
It was clear that the last bit of what Bobby said hit Ricky the hardest. The slightest hint of a scowl flashed across the face of Ricky.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘How are things with that, by the way? In all honesty.’
Shaking his head, Ricky brought his hand up out of that water to run down the features of his face. The events at Ascension had really struck Ricky at his core and because of that, he had mostly pulled back from hanging out and partying with everyone like he had been before. The same people he used to spend nearly every night with, he now couldn’t even look at them like he did before.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘I’ve been keeping my distance from mostly everyone, honestly. Been hanging out with other people. Maybe it’s better to keep things like that separate? It’s kinda hard to have fun knowin the people you’re havin fun with will turn on you at a moment’s notice, y’know?’
Bobby nodded his head knowingly before reaching forward to ruffle the hair of Ricky as he would when the two were growing up.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘You don’t have anything to worry about anymore, Ricky, not since you’ll have me in your corner. I’m going to make sure you’re able to do what needs to be done to be just as good..no, better than anyone else in Fight. I know you may not agree with my methods but just look at your rollercoaster record. My way really can’t hurt anything, now can it?’
For just a moment, you could tell that Ricky was really thinking deeply upon it. It goes back to his fear of not being able to keep up at this level. Everyone has been telling him that he needs to stop worrying about how people see him and how he does things when that sort of mentality only holds you back in the long run. He finally agreed, giving the larger man a single nod of acceptance. To say Bobby was happy about this would have been an understatement. He clapped his hands together, rubbing them against one another vigorously.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Perfect! Now, we have to work on our new plan of attack. When we’re done here, we have to go get packed and ready for the cruise. Totally new for you, yeah?’
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘Yeah it is. I mean, I’ve been on boats and shit before but never something big enough to host a whole ass wrestling event. It’s kinda overwhelming, honestly.’
Bobby shook his head, piefacing Ricky back into that water.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘What you meant to say was that you’re ready to put all of the bullshit that happened at Ascension behind you. You’re refocused, rejuvenated, and ready to step across the line that separates the good from the great.’
Ricky closed the distance caused by Bobby’s push by swimming across that water.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘Ascension really opened my eyes on a lot of things. Who these people really are and where I stand with them. I’ve really tried bein the best person possible to everyone around me. Nine times outta Ten, that’s bitten me in the ass. And yet, the one person who everyone told me not to trust turned out to be the single person I should have been trustin and listenin to from the beginnin.
But that changes at Venom. No more bein nice and respectful to people who don’t deserve it. To people who would sooner throw you over a puddle and use you to keep their shoes dry. I have to start puttin me and my success before the feelins of people whose job it is to do the exact same thing. And that begins, sadly enough, with one of the newest signees to Fight NYC: Lycana. To say the least, this is gonna be a hell of a match. I’m sure she’s gonna bring a new and unique fight that I haven’t faced before. I’m really lookin forward to it.’
Big Ass Bobby: ‘No.’
Once more, Bobby shook his head, his eyes focused on Ricky, clearly disagreeing with what he said.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘What you mean is that Lycana certainly brings something to the table but it’s something that so many others are bringing as of late. She’s a carbon copy of people just like Tara and Jennie Fenix, only much less interesting as a person and even less skilled as an athlete. It’s really sad to see, when you think about it. You get someone like Lycana and they see the success someone like Tara has and they think..Hey, if I look like that and act like that, maybe I’ll be as successful as that.
But it doesn’t happen. People like Tara continue to grow more and more successful and it causes comparisons. Lycana, you’re never going to be as successful as they are. And that’s not even just Tara that I’m talking about either. You’re never going to be as good as them. You’ll always be nothing more than a cheap imitation. The Sam’s Cola to their Coke. Cheaper. Not as good. And something people settle for when they can’t afford better.’
Ricky just remained in that water, kind of taken aback by the rather harsh words spoken by Bobby. He kept quiet even as Bobby continued.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘Lycana, you’re going to receive one hell of a welcome to Fight at Venom. My boy Ricky here is coming in, being pushed by betrayal and the feeling of being absolutely fucked over. He’s got so much more to prove than anyone really knows. This is the best platform to do it on too.
It’s actually doing you a favor, Lycana. You get to know the truth from the start. You don’t know what these types of people are capable of. You won’t have to worry about being lied to for months and months before finally seeing the truth of it all.’
Keeping a straight faced expression about him, Ricky kept his mouth shut for the time being, letting Bobby do the talking.
Big Ass Bobby: ‘By time that bell rings, Ricky will finally be ready to reach his full potential here in Fight. Quicker than lightning, he’s going to run circles around your badly applied Splat dyejob of a head. In this match, you’re going to be pretty worn down already but that’s the risk you so happily chose. And it’s th..’
Before Bobby could continue with what he was saying, Ricky pressed his hands against the solid edge of that pool and propelled himself upwards, out of that water, and into a seated position upon the edge of the pool.
Ricky Rodriguez: ‘The past few months have been a crash course for me, to say the least. With every win, every high point, that confidence builds a little more. With every loss, every low point, I find new ways to pull myself back up and keep goin. You may not be completely unknown or untested comin into this match but it’s still your first match here and that’s still a big pressure point on your nerves, Lycana.
I’m very well aware of who you are and what you’re capable of. Nothin Bobby said can take anythin away from who you are and what you can do. But I will not be the guy who’s gonna stand there and hold the door open for you. I won’t let you in at my expense. However, I will be the guy who slams it shut in your face.
I’ve bounced back from everythin. All the bullshit, I’ve never let it keep me down. I’m stronger cause of it and I plan on usin every last bit of that strength to put you down and start this season off right. Cause after last season? Somethin hasta change.’