June 28, 2017, 02:48:11 AM

Author Topic: An Intriguing Opportunity (Iron Fist Title Promo)  (Read 250 times)

Cross Recoba

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An Intriguing Opportunity (Iron Fist Title Promo)
« on: December 07, 2014, 06:26:21 PM »
The players sat down at the table without saying much of a word to each other beyond the awkward small talk one makes with strangers before they attempt to take them for all the money they are willing to give you. For most this was the highlight of their month, the weekend away from the wife, the sales commission cheque that would go from mediocre to grandiose if the luck was with them.

The barman walked over with a tray of drinks and flawlessly delivered eight different drinks to the correct places around the table. That wasn’t much of a surprise, this wasn’t part of The Sands public-facing facade. Far away from the incessant noise generated by the grandmothers on the penny-slots and keno machines so that the inhabitants of this room could gamble in peace.

Strictly speaking this shouldn’t be the case - on paper this room was filed as a private bar for hire, and tonight that was no different - except instead of a celebration taking place this bar was being hired purely for the interest of a poker game.

            
*******

We come to Master of the Mat and lo and behold - someone got themselves a title shot. Funny, huh? That in my time in SHOOT that I’ve run roughshod over each and every challenge laid in front of me . Marz and Miles - gone. I outghta charge SHOOT extra just for the promise that fans see me end careers EVERY TIME I STEP INTO THE RING!

Not just ending careers but putting on a spectacle - just ask the crowd from when I faced Miles - I could have kept it simple, kept it in the ring and gone for the path of least resistance but that wouldn’t have gotten my point across - that I am the best prospect SHOOT has seen since as long as anyone cares to remember.

I didn’t just methodically break down Miles; I eviscerated him with speed, ruthlessness and hell, I’ll say it - grace, just go watch the YouTube replay of that Million Lira dropkick and nod in agreeance - the fans don’t despise me just because they dream of a day when their $12.95 an hour job affords them the grandeur of my own, they don’t hate me  because I live out their dreams in the ring, they loathe me because I do it all with the agility and technique that they can only use when it comes to making last call.

It serves me well though because I’m facing one of the few people in SHOOT that actually cause me to admit I respect. That’s right, Winter, you got me right - I’m a fan. I’m not going to deny it - maybe in another time we’d set the world alight as the greatest tag-team to ever pick up the titles here but this isn’t that time, but you knew that already.

This match for the Iron Fist Championship wouldn’t work with any other participants, two of the most hated people in SHOOT? The fans would turn over to whatever they could find to make them feel better about their empty lives, but us? The crowd’ll split, not in adulation but sheer hatred, and that’s cool with me - neither of us are going to be hung up or distracted by the crowd, it truly will come down to who is the better man on the night.

I get why this division is something you’d be acclimatized to, I won’t mince my words, you’re a sadist. You get off on thinking of the most vicious and bloodthirsty ways to end a match,  but that’d be selling you short - I know you’ve got a better submission game than me if we’re going to look at who knows more match-ending holds, I know that you’ve got a body of work that screams medical bills. I’m not going to take that away from you, because I don’t need to.

That’s why I’m going to go out and say that of all the matches I’ve had in the ring this...THIS is the match I’m looking forward to the most...why? Maybe it’s the fact that you’ve only got my word and a five minute match to judge me on, maybe it’s the rules of the match that appeal to my nature, or maybe it’s the opportunity to prove to you that I’m not some kid just grateful to step in the ring with Billy Winter, but I’m the guy who’ll look down at the belt in a month’s time and really, really admire the craftsmanship on the new faceplate you fitted on my title-belt


******
The barman went back behind the bar and started to fix an Old Fashioned, he heard the door open and looked up to see Cross Recoba enter the room. He seems relaxed, considering in a few short days he’ll be stepping into the ring for a title fight with Billy Winter - a guy who even Recoba calls sociopathic.

Cross grabbed his cigarette case from his pocket and the barman placed an ashtray on the bar. Recoba rapidly flashed a quick smile, clearly distracted by something that didn’t involve carcinogens and health warnings.

“Jay, did you remember to stock the Oxley on the bar?” Jay was taken off-guard by the question - he knew he’d stocked it but still looked over his shoulder to make sure the bottle hadn’t somehow wandered away on non-existent legs.

“Yes, Cross, it’s right behind me”

“Good, I presume Alex’ll be here shortly, you may as well go ahead and make up a gin and tonic, he’s not going to want to wait around - he’s a busy guy”

The bottle of Oxley was the same one that was here the last time Alexander Beasant dropped by The Sands. A London gin that kept all the regular botanicals in the spirit but added vanilla, aniseed, and meadowsweet - obviously difficult to get hold of but, Jay thought, that was half the reason Alexander drank it; it wasn’t the taste of the drink but the fact that you could be heard to be drinking it that made it his gin of choice.

The door swung open and Alexander Beasant appeared, he uncurled his scarf and slid off his overcoat, draping both over his lead arm.  Recoba stood to greet him and Cross motioned for Alex to take a pew at the bar.

“How was your flight?”

“Fine, I was in California so it was less than an hour. It gave me time to put this proposal into about a ten minute pitch. You’ll love it.”

Jay placed the gin and tonic down in front of Alexander who slid a $20 bill out of instinct as a tip.

“Alex, the bar’s on me.”

“Oh, okay. It’s still a tip - what’s the occasion?”

“There isn’t really one but - “ Cross dropped his voice “with the big fight I figured I could do with some form of entertainment” Recoba motioned to the poker game which was now in full swing. “Seven of those guys are great poker players, one of them I bankroll when he comes here - he’s average but he’s entertaining.”

            
*******

You were almost bang on the money though when describing us, we’re pretty much cut from the same cloth, just with one vital difference - your money was a birthright, an assurance from the moment you took your first breath. Everything I own, I possess, I control - I had to fight to get there. Costello is a father figure to me, he took me in when I had no other opportunities as a favor to my family, taught me how to survive in this world but that was it - it was the bare essentials, nothing more and nothing less. Lesson one - if you want this lifestyle you can’t coast, you can’t take it for granted, and you can’t forget that round every corner there’ll always be someone trying to take you for it.

That’s what you’re going to learn at Master of the Mat, that whilst you might be a man who is used to getting what he wants but, like Jagger once lamented, we can’t always get what we want and I’ll have no problem reminding of you of that once the bell rings.

You see, you’re so now it hurts, you’re bleeding edge, you innovate with every match you post into the annals of SHOOT history but this isn’t your time to steal the show! I’m going to use every edge I can think of, in my line of work it’s an added bonus to your skillset - just how creative can you be, and let me tell you - I’m pretty fucking good at it. Since my hand was raised after taking down Miles I’ve thought of every possible way I can win this match, how I can keep you down for a ten count, how I can force the man who drove Donovan King packing to not be able to answer a ten count.

You know which one I really want to see if it works as well as I think it will? Try a Top Rope Staten Island Drop. Tell me, Billy, how if I deliver what is in effect a top rope front face suplex to you across the ring apron, will you rise by 8? If I were to prop your head onto a chair seat and then leap and deliver a top rope bulldog legdrop - would you be able to answer the count? Lastly, I meant to ask - have you ever considered a rope-assisted triangle or guillitone hold, do you think it’ll work? Let’s find out…

You see, this has worked out pretty well for me - I get to take the title from someone I actually rate on the roster and you, and the SHOOT roster, can find out about the finer details about my other work, whether the hushed whispers that echo about how I truly earn my paycheck at The Sands are justified or just tattle on the Strip!

            
******

Alexander rolled his eyes clearly accustomed to Recoba’s unconventional methods. He pulled out one of his phones and placed it on the bar.

“I didn’t travel here to watch poker, Cross….”

“I appreciate that, so what is this opportunity we ‘can’t miss out on’”

“You know the world’s changing - by 2017 there will 268 billion app downloads accounting for $117 billion in revenue. Those are astronomical figures, the kind that the man in the street wouldn’t be able to comprehend, or want to for that matter. It’s an area of business that everyone needs to look at. We all use them, Christ, it’s impossible not to now…”

Cross took a drag from his cigarette and cocked his head

“The reality is though that the vast majority of them are going to be duds, there just isn’t any escaping that because once people smell money they chase it - whether there is a good idea or solid market behind it or not. I should know, I hear the stories in the city about this being like the ‘Dot Com boom’ fifteen years ago. People have plans scrawled on bar napkins and apps built  in China from ideas that they came up with somewhere between the half-time toilet break and the moment they cracked open their fourth beer of the afternoon.”

“So, what are you telling me?”

“That a market exists, even these fly-by-nighters will make some form of return at the moment but they’ll soon drop off when someone smarter works out how to make it bigger, better, and cheaper. What I’ve found is an opportunity that is 85% of the way towards a certainty to succeed. The idea is there, the market exists, and the only thing holding it back is that the founder isn’t champion at selling the idea, or the opportunity, unless you tease it out of him.”

Cross killed his cigarette and took a sip of his Old Fashioned.

“How did you find out about it?”

“I was at a dinner party where I saw it in action, or at least the result of it”

“Al, this doesn’t really sell it to me…”

Alexander winced at the Americanization of his name, something he’d never been able to shake in all his time in the country.

“Let me explain it from the start. Culinaire, that’s the app, harnesses three emerging trends - the use of drones to cut down on transportation costs and overheads on the back-end, the exponential growth of disposable incomes within the Bay Area and Silicon Valley, and the need for people to produce or procure food that is of restaurant quality.

The demographic for this app isn’t going to include the gas attendant or the plumber, nor most of the Working Joes. That’s part of it’s beauty. It caters to those who either need to project or maintain an image, to those who use the word artisanal as an aspirational buzzword, the sort of people who will only settle for the very best when it comes to the food they eat or that they appear to eat to the wider public….”


Cross lit another cigarette and his eyes had lost the languid appearance they had possessed moments earlier.

“You download the app, enter in your credit card information and then you can either go off a list of recipes or, use it as a place to do your grocery shopping. You pick your window for delivery, or drop-off, and then your account is charged upon delivery. Don’t worry, this isn’t going to Walgreen’s these are sourced from the finest markets and produce vendors in California.”

“So I couldn’t use it now?”

“No, not in Vegas - the press saw this as a rising star at the start of the year but, as I said, the founder’s business acumen is what let’s the venture down. He can cover the Bay Area and Silicon Valley but that’s something that we can change - I’ve already got a few ideas for how we can instantly make this a far more attractive proposition than it currently is.”

“I’m not making any decisions this side of Master of the Mat…”

“I don’t expect you to, I’ll set something up for next week - the three of us can do lunch - I’ll bring in chefs and use the app so you can see the quality behind this potential venture.”

“Fine, with that agreed - let’s see if we can’t find some of your old haunts in this town.”

               
*******