The Salvation of Hank Brown, The Desecration of Jayson Price Dec 27, 2020 20:55:41 GMT -5 Corey Black and Stuart Slane like this
Post by Frank Venable on Dec 27, 2020 20:55:41 GMT -5
FPV RP #24 - The Salvation of Hank Brown, The Desecration of Jayson Price
I sat at my dinner table, looking at the face of a traitor as he ate the Christmas turkey I had made for him.
I had always considered Hank Brown both a professional peer and a friend ever since I met him in the early 2010s. To me, he always seemed the perfect portrait of professionalism, even as he was harassed by the people he was meant to interview on a daily basis. But with the collapse of Wrestling Championship Federation, his main avenue of work was closed off. Brown now found himself mostly used by old timers like myself and Odin Balfore in AW promos to provoke senses of nostalgia, and with the (ostensible) final WCF One even fast approaching, it was time for Brown to once again make himself useful and shill himself out to whoever wanted him.
But I had different plans before he was going to shove a mic in my face. No, I wanted him to pay for his transgressions against me. And the saddest part was that he had no idea of the bombshell I was going to drop on him. He just sat there, eating.
Hank Brown: Mmm, this turkey...it's so good. Seasoned to perfection, I'd even say.
FPV: Thanks, I learned the recipe from my parents years and years ago.
Hank Brown: Well it's a damn good one, that's for sure.
We sat in the dining room of my old residence in Reading, Pennsylvania. With the final One taking place in Philly, I thought it would only be appropriate to lodge here instead of my usual hotel routine. It had the added benefit of being someplace familiar to Hank, so he didn't have ask for directions on how to get here. I had prepared a decent sized Christmas meal for the both of us. I know deep down how lonely a man Hank Brown is, and figured an actual Christmas dinner would lure him here while we discussed promotion for my match at One. As far as he was aware, this was all just a friendly business meeting.
Oh, how wrong he was.
Hank Brown: I gotta say, it's so nice for the final WCF show to bring everyone together like this. I get to hang out with old friends like you again and actually get a little bit of work done in the process.
FPV: Right, right. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm one of the few people who've actually brought you in for work...friend.
The tone with which I said "friend" must've set something off in Hank's mind, as he awkwardly chuckled at my sudden shift in demeanor.
Hank Brown: Hehe...I mean, we are friends, right? Right?
FPV: You think you're so goddamned slick, don't you Hank?
I stood up, beginning my slow approach towards him.
Hank Brown: Frank...what's going on here?
FPV: I'll tell you what's going on, buddy. You're gonna explain yourself and admit that you're a disingenuous little shithead, you got that?
Hank Brown: WHOA! Why so hostile all of a sudden?
My voice turned to an angry snarl as I got closer to Hank.
FPV: What sort of dumb motherfucker do you take me for, Brown? You don't think I keep close attention to what my opponents have to say about me? Don't you know what industry you've been in all these years? I WATCH EVERYTHING! Every little promo, every little interview, I watch it all. Explain yourself.
Hank Brown: Explain what?!
FPV: Explain that meeting we had at the start of the year. January 2020, before the whole world went to shit. I invite you over to have a nice little chit chat, to talk about my match against Odin Balfore and Walter for the World Title. We talked about my history with Odin, you said I "showed so much heart against Odin" whenever I fought him. And you know what? I believed you, Brown. I truly believe every word you said to me in that hotel room in Ohio.
I took my phone out of my pocket, the video I was to show Hank already cued up.
FPV: So explain to me why a few days later, I see this clip on Youtube?!
I played the video of Hank Brown and Odin Balfore arriving off a jet in Australia, Odin talking smack about me as always did, waiting for the golden moment where Hank utters the words I would make sure he came to regret.
Hank Brown (on screen): That's great. FPV has been a huge bitch lately. What about Walter?
I stopped the video there and look at Hank in front me. He had the visage of a dear about to become roadkill, and could only talk in stammers.
FPV: Explain yourself, Hank Brown.
Sounds emerged from Hank Brown, none of them words.
FPV: I SAID EXPLAIN YOURSELF, GODDAMMIT!
Now only whimpers came from him. He was as shaken up as I wanted him to be.
FPV: Well if you're not going to explain yourself then hear this. I hate you, and I hate how fake you've become in your retirement. Cozy up to any old WCF vet that'll let you near them and say good things about them. But you're lucky, as there are two men I just happen to hate more than you right now. The first is James Nightingale, and the second...well, you should know, since you're going to interview me tomorrow about him.
So here's what's going to happen. I'm going to walk on set with you tomorrow, and you are going to ask me one question. "How do you feel about your match against Jayson Price?" No more, no less. Do that, and you won't have to worry. But if I hear any word about you schmoozing up to that drunken imbecile Price, I'll have you blackballed all over this industry. Your journalistic integrity will be crushed to bits, and you won't even get a position at TMZ. I have the connections, I can make it happen, don't tempt me. Got it?
He slowly nodded his head up and down, his face still frozen in fear.
FPV: Good. Now finish your meal, I've got some phone calls to make. TPG business. Don't interrupt me. I'll see you tomorrow.
And with that, I walked away from him and into the living room to conduct business. He heeded my words and left without saying anything soon after.
The next day I met Hank at the old WCF Arena, the backdrop for our interview. I stood in front of the backdrop, waiting on him to finish his prep work. We were surrounded by crew, and it all appeared to be business as usual. Flashbacks entered my mind of the old days. The memories were tinted by nostalgia, but even with that filter I had decided that I wouldn't trade my present for the past. I am not a man of the past like Jayson Price. I am a man of the future.
Finally, Hank finished his prep and walked to join me at the backdrop. He was curt and short with me, as I was with him.
Hank Brown: Morning.
As the camera crew motioned that they were almost ready, I whispered something so quiet only Hank could possibly hear it.
FPV: Remember what I said last night, Brown.
He did not respond. Instead, he waited for the light to blink on the camera before switching into "energetic interviewer" mode.
Hank Brown: Howdy members of the WCF Galaxy! I'm your man Hank Brown, joined here with WCF Veteran Frank Patrick Venable on the eve of what is no doubt going to be a historic event, The Final One! Now Frank, you're going up against fellow WCF Vet Jayson Price, tell me what your thoughts on this match up are?
FPV: Well Hank, have I got some feelings on this match. You know I should be hyped for this, I should be jazzed outta my mind for this, the final installment of One. I mean, this should be a celebration of everything that made WCF...well, WCF. But instead, I'm frustrated. I'm frustrated because I'm spending this historic night having to contend with a man who lost his passion for this sport years ago. Jayson. Price.
I mean, don't get me wrong, I can see why management would want to book a match like this. Price and I have had kinda similar career trajectories, we've both won a lot of titles and been double Grand Slam champs. On paper this match up sounds incredible, main event worthy even! But then you have to actually book Price, and then it all falls apart. He either doesn't truly care about the show and the fans and walks off without a word wasting everyone's time, or he gives a half assed performance, gets his paycheck and drinks himself to oblivion. There is no winning when you book this man. This man is not professional. This man should not be trusted to carry a wrestling match by himself. Yet this is the man I have to contend with in my final One performance.
For fuck's sake Price! Had you put in the effort to actually maintain your career this match up would have meant so much more! This could've even been the main event of the show! I know how much you like to brag that you're the only man in history to main event One, Ten and Fifteen, imagine being able to say "Yeah, all those events rocked, but I also got to main event the final One ever." Imagine the prestige that would've netted you and I! This SHOULD mean so much more, but it doesn't. It doesn't, and it's entirely your fault that it doesn't, you fuck. Now we're so far down the card it almost feels like an insult. An exhibition match where everyone already knows who's going to win.
You're a joke, Jayson. I can at least admit when I have even an ounce of respect for someone I otherwise despise, but with you it's nothing but disgust. You've done everything that you could the past few years to make sure that everyone remembers the name Jayson Price not with awe and respect, but with groans and abject laughter. People hear "Mr. Every Title" and tune out altogether. It makes sense that you'd only come out of your groundhog hole to wrestler for a WCF show, since AW knows better than to sully their reputation by associating themselves with you. At least with this show you're burying your career in familiar territory.
You know what I've been up to since WCF closed, Jayson? THREE WORLD TITLES. Charity work. Adoration from the fans. I became a Man Made God and salvaged that tag team from the depths of Price-hell to become the biggest deal in AW. All people know about your stint as a God was getting dunked on by Torture in song form. That is not Prestige. Corey, Graham and I? Now THAT is prestige. THAT is what is it to be a Big Fucking Deal. I was ranked #4 on the AW Top 100 this year because I wanted to be there, I wanted my name associated with greatness. So I put the work in, I clawed my way to the top, and look at me now. #4 for the year, more World Title Reigns than anyone else in AW History, and the respect of my peers. Even if they hate my guys like Odin Balfore, they have no choice but to respect my heart.
I DID THAT. I PUT IN THE WORK, AND I MADE ALL OF THAT HAPPEN, PRICE. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU FUCKING WORKED FOR ANYTHING?
You are the laziest son of a bitch I've ever met in this industry. You show up, give the bare minimum in literally everything you do, then leave. Fuck, you're not even dressing up in suits or whatever to make yourself look presentable, you're just promoting this match with pictures of you in your bathrobe on a yacht drinking your fifth drink of breakfast. Why are you even bothering with this match? Can I even be so blunt as to say that I've not been training for this match as hard as I would for a normal match? Part of that is because no matter what happens I know that I'll win, but part of it is also me wondering if you'll even give enough of a shit to show up to this event and make my prep time worth it. Why even bother? That might as well be your personal creed. You don't bother, so why should I?
So yeah Hank, if I sound miffed that I have to face Price, it's because I am. And let me make it clear. This ain't the booking department's fault, they just want to put on a good show and I understand where they're coming from. No no no, this all lies solely on the shoulders of Jayson Price. The fact that this match feels hollow and empty, the fact that we're so low on the card, the fact that no one in their right mind truly believes that you can be the fourth best wrestler in all of AW, that all lies on you, you Margaritaville motherfucker, you half-assed has-been, you BLIGHT ON PROFESSIONAL WRESTLING.
Do you even want to be here, Price? Are you doing this because you have some bills to pay or something? Do you feel anything in regards to this match. Because from my perspective, you haven't given a shit about this industry for years. So at One, I'm going to do what I always do in AW. I'm going to kick ass. I'm going to kick your ass so hard that your entire career is going to flash before your eyes, you're going to realize how much of everyone's time you've wasted and finally just retire. Then, and only then, can we put this sorry failed Jayson Price experience behind us and move on with our lives. And that's everything I need to say on the matter, Hank.
Hank Brown: Phew, biting words from FPV folks! Will his predictions come to pass? Tune in to The Final One live on Monday the 28th to find out!
The camera's stopped rolling and everyone began moving on to the next shoot of the day. I turned to Hank for a brief moment.
FPV: You followed your instructions. Good man.
Hank Brown: Sure, whatever. Lemme just ask you though, do you really think all of that...vitriol was necessary.
I responded to him with the three words that have singlehandedly defined Jayson Price's entire career. Three very simple, but striking words.
FPV: I don't care.