A year ago, two weeks less, I stood in the middle of that very same ring I will compete in tomorrow night. I stood in front of that cheering crowd as a young rookie to the business. I had no idea walking to that ring that my match would be for the new Prodigy Championship. I knew that my opponents would be three of the biggest on the roster.
Oh boy did I know. Talk about a crazy Christmas present! Just standing in that corner and looking across either direction. Santa Claus, Uncle Rocky, and Bobby Dean. And then this small woman in over her head.
But, I did it. I managed, not without its own faults, to accomplish my goal of winning the match and becoming the first Prodigy Champion in the UTA. Those faults of course being that it was not on my own doing completely, thanks to Log Habben, and a meme was formed involving Bobby and myself. But, I did it.
And I did it all without getting an ego. Without claims of falsehood about my career and financial situation that seems to befall champions in this industry. A twenty dollar getup like Murray's after all holds more momentum and importance than some thousand dollar suit filled with the wearer's own salty tears. Could make a nice mint bottling that up though.
Tomorrow night I have a chance to be a champion again. At Seasons's Beatings, again. A champion that the fans can look up to, as everyone looks past the UTA Champion.
This time however it is against a man that has been in the UTA for eons. The longest reigning Internet Champion, which is what the Legacy title replaced. Claude has the skill that all three of those men had. He has the veteran status. He frankly has everything that is needed to be a champion and remain as such.
Of course his focus is not one hundred percent forward. Both eyes are over his shoulders. He does not know where or when Mikey Unlikely and his prodigy Kendrix will attack next. If at all.
Dynasty has deep roots and for the first time, in quite frankly, forever... those roots have been snapped. They are no more. The attack on CBR has proven that. However those two remain tightly bound with their own purpose and goal. Whatever that may be. I doubt that involves sitting backstage quietly while we have our match.
This will not be an easy fight, even without them. I know this. And I bet he knows this as well.
I am not the same woman that wondered into that poor girl backstage during a live show.
I have been a Champion.
I have been beaten.
I have been bloodied.
I have been taken to hell and back.
I have lost friends, I have gained rivals, and lost allies.
But at Season's Beatings when I face CBR for the Legacy title... what matters is not the past, not the losses, not the paths that were never taken. What matters is simply this.
I am still here.
"I don't have a heart of gold and I don't intend on growing one."
- Kathryn Velmont Thomas