CONTENT

Title: Catalyst
Featuring: Bronson Box
Date: Today.
Location: Khan el-Khalili Market
Show: Wrestleshow #46

Egypt

The narrow dusty streets are simply packed with life. A long strip of stalls and booths and carpets with salespeople shouting the benefits of their wares to the flowing river of humanity shouldering by. Khan el-Khalili in the Islamic District of Cairo is always the site of the cities huge sprawling bazaar. In a sea of locals we notice the few white dots of tourists doing their best to move through the crowd. One particularly white spec moves without issue, almost parting the crowd as he strolls right down the center of the street.

Looking like he stepped out of some old Humphrey Bogart flick from the 40’s, the coat of his pinstripe suit draped over his shoulder, his vest and tie undone, a pair of classic black frame Ray Bans on shielding his eyes from the noonday sun. As he stops to fiddle with some trinkets in a nearby stall we notice the unmistakable figure of Bronson’s business manager, Jane Katze, emerge from the throng and wordlessly sidle up beside him. Dressed in tall brown boots, tight tan pants and a flowing white top with her hair loose around her shoulders, out of the norm, but a striking image nonetheless.

Katze:
You had a photoshoot two hours ago at the arena, you know.

Her tone isn’t mad, maybe a little frustrated. But no more than normal. This isn’t a new occurrence. Ever since joining UTA, with their wild world-wide travel schedule Bronson has been prone to… well, wander off and see the sights.

Box:
Didn’t quite feel like goin’ if’n I’m bein’ honest.

His voice is low and gravely, the dry dusty Egyptian air obviously doing a number on the Scottish Strongman’s pipes. He finishes fiddling with a trinket, nodding at the shriveled little man behind the booth and moves on. Katze scrunches her nose in annoyance and follows after him. After a few yards of silence Bronson pipes up, unprovoked.

Box:
I miss this. Gallivantin’ from city to city like this, specially overseas. I been here once, in fact. Was headin’ to a long tour down in South Africa for a pretty penny and made one stop here in Cairo to put on a show with the boys. Tiny little sweat box of an arena across town. Heard it got blown up… shame.

Jane’s frustration melts into curiosity. As they stroll along she lets him continue. It’s not everyday Bronson is in a “sharing mood”... at least not without a few drinks.

Box:
This bloody place, the UTA, far cry from the old outfits I did my wanderin’ with. Old school European promoters and their long winding tent tours around the continent. Nutter South Africans, pinch penny Mediterraneans. Kept me movin’ though. Liked that.

The long allyway all of a sudden opens up into a big sunny square filled with palm trees and bustling groups of people going this way and that, a simply jaw droppingly beautiful mosque stands as the squares centerpiece. Jane’s eyes are drawn away from her charge to take in the shimmering gold inlay and intricate scroll work on the buildings exterior. They stop a few yards away and take a place on a bench near a picturesque fountain.

Katze:
Not a bad view.

Box:
Aye. Buildin’s called Al-Hussein. Built back in the eleven hundred's by some rag wearin’ muckety muck that happen to have all the bloody money at the time. Savage religion but ye’ gotta’ give it to ‘em, they know how to build a gorgeous church.

The two sit in silence for a few moments taking in the architecture, people watching. Box twists his nose and mouth uncomfortably before pipeing back up.

Box:
Sorry I missed that blasted... photoshoot was it?

Katze:
Don’t fret about it. Not important. Whatever you need to do to get in the right frame of mind for Monday, do it. If you need to disappear for the next few days, feel free. Just show up with your dukes up ready to fight. All I ask.

He side steps her statement and points back over his shoulder, back towards the bazaar.

Box:
Ten years ago a man strapped with explosives set himself up right back there. Eight lives includin’ himself snuffed out, just like that. Bloody fascinated by that shite.

Katze:
I’d call it monstrous. Cowardly, even.

Bronson chuckles under his breath.

Box:
Monstrous, yes. Cowardly, no. That’s American patriotic sentiment, right there. It’s easy to call a man like that a coward. Dismisses him. Declare him out of his mind. Makes him small enough to forget. American’s don’t know how to process that sort of dedication to a cause when it’s so antithetical to the way you lot operate. And when I said American’s I include Canadians in that sentiment as well, even the filthy French kind.

Jane gives Bronson a sideways glance.

Katze:
So you’re saying he’s some sort of misunderstood hero?

Box:
To some. The idea of givin’ everythin’, sacrificin’ the self for the greater cause. Whilst his aims might not make sense to you and I sittin’ here… personally I quite enjoy livin’... you have to admire that sort of pure dedication. Even a man perceived as tiny and insignificant as the poor sot who strapped himself with explosives, with enough dedication to his cause, was able to make an impact that rocked a city. A country. The world, even. A whole culture.

Katze:
I can’t believe you’re rationalizing that sort of madness, only you Bronson.

Box:
I ‘aint musin’ about good or evil or mad or sane… just talkin’ about resolve, sunshine. So be still yer’ star spangled heart before ye’ start quotin’ from the bloody constitution. I’ve always been fascinated by how far people can be convinced to push their convictions given the right… catalyst.

Jane just raises a curious eyebrow.

Box:
Take the lads and lass I’ll be squarin’ off against Monday fer’ instance. Every one of them has conviction, hard felt belief willin’ ‘em forward to varying degrees of fame and fortune. This Hopper fellow, older gent lookin’ desperately for another rung of the proverbial career ladder. A few to many losses strung together and the term “has been” starts gettin’ thrown around at his age… formerly successful men dread that as much as death itself. Death though, that’s not the Saudi’s fear… no, his convictions are much more about squeezin’ every ounce of life and not wastin’ a drop. But havin’ his magic carpet pulled out from under him again… watchin’ his hard work at the sport he loves almost as much as his faith yanked away, the idea of FAILIN’ at this pursuit even through no fault of his own scares that little bugger to his core. Bloody typical overachiever if ye’ ask me.

Bronson’s face scrunches up slightly.

Box:
The Fears girl… well, she’s somethin’ else ‘aint she? That’s another thing I’m fascinated by… productive crazy people.

Katze:
Feel a kinship, do ya’? Maybe a stay in a psych ward might do you some good then.

The Wargod gives Jane a narrow smile and carries on.

Box:
Aye. She’s a nutter, but a damned talented one. She and the Saudi might have a good shot at comin’ out of their match if it comes down to pure IQ. But this ‘aint a spellin’ bee and Jesse Kendrix is as sly as they come. So the Saudi and his bloody iPhone app and Ms. Fears and her fancy degree and her fascinatingly dark family history can both stuff it up their collective arses… I want my win back from that fat tongued southerner.

Katze:
Ooooo, bitter are we?

Bronson’s response is less than tempered. To a passer by it might look as though the two business associates were a couple breaking up.

Box:
You’re bloody RIGHT I’m bitter. I ‘aint makin’ any excuses, all I’m sayin’ is I hope that dear Jesse nuts it up like the Guy Ritchie extra he PRETENDS to be and comes out swingin’ against those two over-educated TWATS because he can bank on the man he’ll be facin’ later that night bein’ named Bronson FOOKIN’ Box.

The Original DEFIANT pinches the bridge of his nose, running his hand down the length of his mustachioed face.

Box:
Chris almighty it’s bloody hot…

Katze:
What about CBR?

He raises a sweaty eyebrow.

Box:
What about him?

Katze:
Well… I mean…

Box:
He did all the talkin’ for me. He reminded everyone of the swath of damage I’ve caused in the UTA since I arrived. Reminded everyone who I am, where I’m from, what I’m capable of with the right… catalyst.

A small smile starts to form on Jane’s ruddy lips as her client hits his stride. She settles back to listen to the rest of Bronson’s diatribe.

Box:
Mr. Ranier... if the worst he can lob at me is the fact I stumbled against his Dynasty brother and, like the rest of this lazy lot, toss darts at a promotion who’s name I haven’t muttered in months when here representin’ the UTA… then he REEKS of more desperation and fear than I ever figured. He said it himself… I’m bloody dangerous. And bein’ who he is, lyin’ is second nature… he’s scared alright. Scared because he CAN’T quite figure me out. Not one of these “UTA superstars” has. Much less the five morons involved in this little game they've created ter’ find out which of us gets the “honor” of waddin’ that orange bastard holdin’ the Legacy title into a ball and tossin’ him into the bin.

Bronson gets up from the bench, dusts his jacket off and slides it back on.

His eyes finally meet “us.”

Pupils locked right on the camera.

Box:
I’ve never claimed perfection, you can look at my career win loss record, it ‘aint pretty so ye’ can place that particular club back in yer’ bag, Claude. But I win when it counts. I win when the stakes are just so, ooooo and HOW I win, that’s the fascinatin’ bit. Always is. The same old tricks that’ve kept you and yer’ ridiculous faction afloat ‘aint gunna’ work quite as well against ol’ Boxer. I’m one of a kind. An I got tricks of my own, boy'o.

He smiles. Adjusting his sunglasses in the hot Cairo sun on the bridge of his sweaty nose.

Box:
Ye’ can scheme. Ye’ can call me names and remind me endlessly of my shortcomings, my mistakes. Run through the whole bloody playbook, lad. It ‘aint goin’ te’ change one damn thing about the meatgrinder yer’ about to prance yer’ precious pink panties into come Monday, sunshine. I want Kendrix’s blood… and I want Sektor’s. An’ if that ‘aint gunna’ happen? If you or the old man somehow manage to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and all that bloody rot…

His eyes drift over to the spot he referenced earlier. The spot where ten years ago a man took his own life and the lives of others in a devastating suicide bombing.

Box:
Well…

He chuckles as he pantomimes pressing a detonator with his thumb and fist.

The hard cut to black is jarring as the bright square suddenly becomes an inky black field.

 


Box: V/O
Without bloody hesitation.

 



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