Private: Ned Reform
From the desk of Benedict F. Reform, PhD:
My dearest Melinda,
It shames me to admit this. The impossible has happened. I believe my spirit – my indomitable will – my mental fortitude – has been broken.
The professional wrestling business has claimed another victim.
Woe… is me.
Dr. Ned Reform
“Yo, Doc. It’s me – it’s Levi. I just wanted to again say how sorry I was for the whole misunderstanding the other day… hoping to hear from ya soon… uh, anyway… give me a call, okay?”
“Hey, Doc. I was scrolling through YouTube and I just happened to come across this TED Talk. It’s about finding yourself or whatever. Seems like the kind of thing you’d, uh, like. I texted it to you but didn’t hear nothing back. Just checking to see if you got it. Anyway, give me a call.”
“Hey Doc, it’s Levi. Wondering if I should get a flight to Orlando? I see what we’re… er, you’re booked for the PRIME show. Haven’t heard from ya. Would really like to be in your corner as you beat on Zion, you know? Anyway, give me a call.”
“Hey, Doc. Levi again. My phone got a call from an unknown number. Just seeing if it was you. Anyway, give me a call.”
“Hey, Doc. Hey – I think I forgot to tell ya that I have a twin brother. Yeah! I totally screwed up – I think it was him that tried to pin you in that six way match! I told him off, don’t you worry. I… yeah, this is stupid, huh? No way you’re going to buy this. You’re like… a super genius. Sorry for lying… I just feel real bad. I’d like to make it right, okay? Give me a call.”
“Hey, Doc. Just calling to say hi. Anyway, give me a call.”
“Hey, Doc. I saw that Abe fella is looking for a fight! Calling you his ‘blood feud partner’… whatever that means. Anyway, he’s got some back up, so I figured I’d better be there for ya! We got this, Doc. Just like old times, right? Anyway, give me a call.”
“Dunno, Doc. More I think about it, the more Abe Lipschitz needs to be dealt with. Guy like that, running his mouth? Not on the Honor Society’s watch, am I right? Anyway, give me a call and we can figure out how to shut that guy up once and for all!”
“Doc! It just occurred to me! You’re facing Darin Zion! I mean, you know that… but he’s another HOW guy! Just like the two guys that beat… uh, nevermind. Anyway, we know how tricky, those guys can be right? Best to have someone watching your back so you can really teach em a lesson, right? I’ll be there! See you in Orlando, Doc!”
…anyway, give me a call.”
“You chknow what, you bald motherfucker? I DON’T CARE! I DON’T CARE ANYMORE, SCHOUUU GUY! Ignore me if you want! (hiccup) I’ll be JUST FINE WITHOUT YOU!
…(sob) NO I WON’T! You taught me everything I know! I wasn’t worth a damn in this sport until you started to guide me! I don’t know what TO DO!!! I NEED YOUR HELP!!! PLEASE!!! (sob) AND YOU… IF YOU REFUSE ME, GO FUCK YOURSELF!!! (sob)
…hanywchay, gifffe me a call.”
“Hey, Doc. Really sorry about that message last night. I know what you say about booze. Trust me, I’m paying for it today! Ha ha!
Anyway, I hope we can just forget that happened. I really need to get things back on track. Looking for some guidance. Anyway, give me a call.”
“Good news, Doc! I’m gonna be in Boston on Wednesday! I’m sure we’ll see each other there and put all this nastiness behind us! Boston, right? I remember you saying you lived there for a while, back in the day. Almost like a homecoming. We’ll re-connect in Boston and then maybe we can fly out to Orlando together? Same flight? I call window! Ha ha! Just kidding – I know you love the window seat. Anyway, see ya in Beantown! Give me a call!”
The phone plays that last message out loud over the speaker… and then the screen goes dark. It rests on the arm of a comfy office chair. The chair sits in a dark room.
And in that chair is Ned Reform.
The fact that there are no lights on doesn’t seem to bother him. His bald head is illuminated by the little moonlight that shines through a nearby window. In his hand, he briefly swirls a snifter of brandy before taking a grimace-inducing sip.
He sits alone.
For a while.
Finally, after a grunt and with what seems like great effort, he reaches over to the nearby desk. It’s hard to see in the moonlight, but he picks up a small, silver dart.
Suddenly, the man who has been a corpse this entire scene springs to life. With a primal yell, he turns and hurls the dart at his nearby door. That being done with, he collapses back into his chair, once again a stoic and unmoving hunk of human flesh.
The dart, meanwhile, hits its intended target perfectly.
A dartboard – with a picture of Darin Zion over it.
From outside the window, the hoot of an owl.