Something To Prove
Date: 25th Aug 2021
Sunday, August 22, 2021
Paint & Sip Studio New York
New York, NY
Todrick is at a sip and paint event by himself. The theme of the night was Farmhouse Daises, and the class was a two-hour class. This was a date because it was $50 and included one glass of wine. That was New York for you, though. Usually, he would be there with his girlfriends, but they were all busy, and he needed to get out of the house. Surprisingly it wasn’t because he needed a break from Austin Ramsey’s antics. They had been going to couple’s therapy, but he went to his own sessions with the doctor. He wanted to set the example for Austin, who hated therapy, and it was working. Austin had been keeping his appointments, and they made progress with his dosage of medicine. This had led to almost three weeks of peace in the Ramsey household.
The doctor recommended that Todrick start doing things without Austin because he felt like he was losing himself lately. He needed a separate identity outside of him. The only time they were apart was when Austin was training his clients at the gym. Austin was also growing an unhealthy attachment to Todrick, which is why Todrick’s matches with FIGHT! NYC had been such an issue. Austin finally admitted to intentionally deleting Todrick’s promotional work and causing him to miss Venom because he couldn’t stand the sight of someone putting their hands on him. Austin thought what he was doing was for the greater good, and Todrick retorted with, “what else is new?”
Austin had good intentions, but they did not align with Todrick’s in this instance. The issue was dead, and Austin vowed to support Toddy’s wrestling career. They had even been training together. They still needed to work through managing each other at ringside, but Toddy was glad for the partial victory. He took a sip of his wine and looked at some of the other ladies’ paintings. Some were quite good, and he looked at his blank canvas and began thinking.
Todrick Tabor-Ramsey: ”My wrestling career has been like this blank canvas lately. Everyone knows there is a masterpiece waiting to be painted and marveled at by all who see it. Why have I allowed the brush to sit here untouched and the paint to remain undisturbed? I am quite the colorful individual, but that has not been showcased to my fellow wrestlers and my fans since Blood Money, where it all began. I could sit here and blame my husband, who did play a significant role in my fall from grace, or I could put on my big girl panties and accept responsibility. All I had to do was check behind him and make sure he backed things up and posted them after editing my recordings.
The doctor is right; I am too dependent on him. He knows the technology stuff, but I couldíve watched him and learned so that I could do it myself. When he was having his “freakouts” so we wouldnít go to Hearst Tower in time for me to perform, I shouldíve seen right through that. Have we gotten to the place where I make excuses for his actions? Have I become one of those girls I sit and judge for being naÔve because they are “dickmatized”? When it comes to love, looks, affection, and definitely sex, he has all that nailed, but itís all the other challenges that come with him that have me exhausted.
I chose to say “I do,” but in addition to wrestling, The Life, and Cooking with Toddy, that Austin can be another full-time job. Iíve met a lot of his personalities, but who knows if I have met them all. There are the primaries, but when faced with certain situations, sometimes I meet someone new. They are all kind and affectionate with me, even the dark ones, but itís still a full-time job. Between filming, training, and trying the be the perfect wife. She is tired, honey. Everything seems so focused on him, though. Look at me now; Iím supposed to be sipping this wine and painting, but who am I thinking about? Get it together, girl.”
Todrick picks up his brush and begins to paint. He looks at the example and takes a sip of his wine, and goes to work. He shuts off his thoughts and feels free as he continues to work. He never really gave way to these thoughts outside of his therapy sessions, but this was progress for him. He finishes and looks at the beautiful painting and marveled at how good it looked. He fell into his routine and began thinking about where he could hang it in the house that Austin would agree to. He shook his head at himself and knew that Rome was not built in a day, so he would keep working on his every thought, not being consumed with Austin.
Monday, August 23, 2021
Austin and Todrickís house
“Try It On My Own”
Todrick walks into the house and hangs his keys on the hook. Duke and Domino look up at him and then lie back down on their Daddyís lap. Austin has on his headset and is playing X-Box. It sounded like he was playing with his friends, and they were drinking and talking shit as usual. He takes the painting and goes upstairs. He decides to hang the artwork in one of the guest bathrooms, and he gets the picture hanging tools and does it himself. This small act of independence made him feel good. Not only had he decided where to put it without asking Austin, but he hung it all by himself. Normally, he wouldíve nagged Austin to hang it but not this time. Baby steps and all. He turns the light off and goes to the shower in the master bedroom. He steps in, and the water feels good, cascading down his skin. As if he had an automated sensor, Austin was in the shower right behind him.
Austin Ramsey: Did you have a good time tonight, babe?
Todrick Tabor-Ramsey: Austin, how did you even know I was home? You all were deep in that game, and I thought you couldnít pause it because you were online?
Austin Ramsey: You canít pause it; I got off the game when I smelled your perfume. I missed you.
There was the man that he fell in love with. This is why he stayed despite all of Austinís antics. Austin liked having friends, but he put all that aside for Todrick. Moments like this, he felt safe and loved, and all the problems in the world went away. Someone loved him and accepted him for who he was. When you go through life the way Todrick had, that mattered. Life was so difficult because of gender norms and roles growing up. There was no material about this on television or the internet. He was always told that he was a freak. Some days he felt like a boy, and some days he felt like a girl. Pronoun usage was never correct, and his dad had tried to beat the gay out of him.
His mom did the best she could and never judged him. She knew life would be hard for her little boy, and when she walked in on him in one of her dresses, heels, and make-up, she did what she could to protect him and teach him to be careful. Austin would never let anything happen to him, and that was the security that he still sometimes needed. He knew that everyone would not understand him, and some would never take him seriously. Austin always made them take him seriously. The one thing neither of them could control was his opponents taking him seriously in the ring.
Todrick was not the traditional wrestler in any sense, and there had been a petition online to force him to wear pants instead of gear that resembled female wrestling attire. He always handled every comment with dignity and grace so as to not embarrass FIGHT! NYC, but it angered Austin beyond words. That made forgiving Austin for his actions easier. He now had something to prove to the entire roster and every fan or hater of the company. He deserved to be on the roster, and he deserved to be a part of the Manhattan Championship Eliminator Four-Way Dance Match at Toxic Tag. He definitely had his work cut out for him because he would be facing Kasey Winterborn, Valkyrie, and JJ Starfire. All were fierce competitors in the ring, and this would be no walk in the park. That was a problem for later that day during training. For now, Austin wanted his attention, and he was going to give it to him.
Monday, August 23, 2021
World Of Unpredictable Wrestling
“Training With The Beast”
Austin Ramsey: Todrick, if you are going to do the axe kick split on your downed opponent, you need to do it right. That looked fucking sloppy. Again!
Austin was a tyrant during training. As part of getting Austin to come around to the idea of Todrick in the ring, Todrick had to agree to train with him. This definitely was not #NiceAustin.
Austin Ramsey: I see that look on your face, and I donít want to hear it. Just get your shit together. Also, donít plan on using that move during your match because you have two other competitors in that match that will knock your block off if they see the opportunity. I only want you taking risks when they are all down, or two of them arenít in the ring. Understood?
Todrick rolled his eyes and nodded yes. Austin ran him through more drills, and Todrick wanted to take a break, but Austin pushed him harder. He finally let him have a water break. Todrick was pissed, but he knew that Austin meant well. Austin never blurred the lines when they were training and was not compassionate or affectionate even during breaks. They glared at one another and sat in silence. Todrick hopped off the ring apron and headed towards his gym bag. He picked up his phone, and before he could open it, Austin took it away.
Austin Ramsey: No. Breakís over, get back in the ring, and letís run more drills.
Todrick said nothing and turned around, and got back into the ring. Though he didnít like it, Austin was correct. He couldnít help but wonder if this was how couples trained or if they even trained together at all. Austin made him pay for his mind wandering, and he found himself flat on the mat on his back.
Austin Ramsey: What the fuck, Todrick!
He didnít call him Toddy; when Austin said Todrick, he meant business, and he was upset about something.
Austin Ramsey: What are we doing here? Pay attention, dammit. That couldíve been the thing that one of your opponents capitalize on. You canít do that shit during any match. Let alone with opponents as seasoned as the ones you will face at Toxic Tag. Focus, so you win or donít fucking go at all. And if you fucking cry, Iím walking away. Get it together, right fucking now.
Some of the other students at the school had gathered to watch The Ramseyís in the ring; they had seen them in F2B, OPW, and now on FIGHT! NYC. They looked up to both of them, and Todrick knew he had to hold it together. Austin was right, and he could never fall apart in the ring. Thatís what the privacy of your dressing room was for. Todrick shook it off and began again. This time he was focused and did everything correctly. Austin grunted and transitioned to bump drills. Todrick was extraordinarily flexible and had terrific counters in the ring, but he would undoubtedly have to take bumps. Valkyrie was always known for her ruthless aggression in the ring, and she could put on some pretty violent matches. Kasey was excellent in her own right and had put on some fantastic matches, plus who knew if she was training with the great Shawn Warstein, who would only make her that much better. Then there was JJ Starfire, he had been in the business for quite some time, and he put on wrestling clinics during some of his matches.
When they finished, Todrick knew he was going to be good and sore. He pushed through it all, and they stopped to talk to the small crowd that had gathered. Performing in front of an audience came naturally to Todrick. He had been a cheerleader, and all eyes were on him. The two hit the showers, and Austin exhaled and was back to his usual self. They got dressed and headed out to the car. Austin carried Todrickís bag and opened the door for him. The two headed out for massages and a meal.
Monday, August 23, 2021
“Role Model Behavior”
Just like any other day, the couple had been together all day, but Austin knew he had been pretty rough on Todrick, so he wanted to take him on a Ferris Wheel to make up for it. Austin secured the tickets, and Todrick browsed on Instagram. It was a lovely night, and the background was perfect to go live to talk about his match. He didnít always want to film that in the house. He considered another Cooking With Toddy segment, but this was too beautiful to pass up. Austin walked up and took his hand, and led him inside Denoís Wonder Wheel Amusement Park.
Todrick Tabor-Ramsey: Babe, would you mind if I went live while we are here to talk about my match at Toxic Tag?
Austin Ramsey: Why would I be mad about that? This is your night; whatever you want to do, we will do. This is “hell week” at the gym. I will be a complete dick when we train, but it will make you better, I promise. Give me your phone, and Iíll record you.
Todrick hands him the phone and opens his purse, and checks out his make-up in his compact. Once he is satisfied, he puts it away and hands Austin his purse. Austin gives him the thumbs up that he is live.
Todrick Tabor-Ramsey: Hey Rockstars! Tonight was so beautiful that I had to share it with you. As you can see, behind me is a giant Ferris wheel, and much like my career, round and round it goes, where it will stop, no one knows. First, Iíd like to thank all of my loyal fans who have stuck with me through each wrestling venture, episode of The Life, and my new show Cooking With Toddy. There is no me without you and all your love and support. Thank you for all your support recently with the death of my cousin. Many of you have been asking about Amari Kent, but he did not handle the death well. Right now, all we can do is continue to love and support him. Amari is a fighter. He is resilient and will bounce back from this. As you know, he took some time off from FIGHT! NYC and I know that he did what he thought was best for him.
That isnít what is best for me. As my granny used to say, “I need to keep my hands busy.” So I will continue to press on and put on matches that you all will talk about for many years to come. Now you have not seen me since Blood Money, but I can promise you that I am coming back a changed girl that will give the rest of my opponents something to think about. They are all phenomenal competitors, but Toxic Tag is not going to be their night. I am going to fight my heart out to honor my family and, most importantly myself. I know that some people have already counted me out when they saw the names of my opponents. But like I told Denzel Porter, Iím have something to prove, and I will have to show everyone what Iím made of.
Underestimate me at your own peril. Take your eye off the prize, and I will seize the opportunity and look absolutely fabulous doing it. I will bring the fight to each of you and prove that I deserve to be here just as much as anyone on the roster. No one thought I would make it as far as I did at Blood Money, but I continue to knock down barriers and be the person that every gender-fluid kid out there can look at and feel comfortable in their own skin and confident in their strength. I am going to make sure that no one ever underestimates Todrick Tabor-Ramsey ever again. See you at Toxic Tag, my loves. Muah.
Austin stops the live and immediately ensures that Todrick sees him post it. He copies the link and puts it through a web converter. He downloads it and saves it, and uploads it to Twitter. Todrick watches him do it all and memorizes what he is doing. Austin hands him back the phone and smiles. He grabs his hand, and the two turn and head towards the giant Ferris wheel to enjoy the rest of their night.