Private: Darin Zion
The lights come back on, and Darin Zion can now see clearly after the soul crushing defeat at the hands of Kenny Freeman. As per usual, he’s sitting in the trainer’s room, getting checked for a post-match concussion. As the trainers approach him, Zion sits up, and whines. “I can’t afford healthcare right now. I’m waaaaay too poor to handle the weight of these bills. Now if you excuse me…”
“But Mr. Zion…” the trainer exclaims out loud, however, Zion has completely tuned him out. He’s made it completely down the hallway, rushing down towards the locker room. As he’s strolling down the arena hallway, PRIME top interviewer Angelica Brooks the rushes up alongside him. As she’s parting her hair, she’s carrying a notebook, trying to secure an interview with artist formerly known as REAL LOVE.
“Mr. Zion, if you could give me a moment of your time. I’d like to discuss…”
“NOT INTERESTED!!!!” Zion barks out with authority before slamming the door in her face. Zion slowly saunters to his locker room, opening to find the tattered hoodie, a few pieces of spare change, and his ragged old duffel bag. He takes a deep breath before heading down the halls, trying to sneak out the back of the arena. As he leaves, he secures himself a couple of pieces of cardboard.
“Millions of peaches! Peaches for me!” howls a homeless man at the Clarksville homeless shelter. The exhausted, warmed down, now patchy Darin Zion keeps tossing a rubber ball into the air repeatedly, emotionally fading away from the world. The glow in his eyes has completely faded into a rough, darkened scowl. More facial hair donned his face than usual. His hair looks even more oiled and tattered than it did 3 weeks ago. He no longer has that usual zeal in his spirit.
Zion’s jeans look ripped and frayed; barely hanging together by a thread. His hoodie is filled with holes. His complexion looks rather tan and olive from the dirt and grime. He’s no longer carrying a duffle bag with him. Off to the side of his bed is his brindle filled with whatever belongings he can take with him. Tears fill his eyes as he lays down on the cot trying to sleep. He longs to yell out and put the other hobo in his place—but this community has treated him like a human being. Zion’s had 3 square meals a day. He’s haggled for rum to block out the pain. He’s completely numbed what pain he’s felt.
As Zion looks up towards the sky, his eyes meet a calendar.
“CRAP! He exclaims at the top of his lungs. “I’ve got 3 days left until the next PRIME show.” Zion stores his ball in his bag before he slides out the back in the middle of the night. In the back of his mind, he begins to wonder how he’s going to make it to the arena. He pulls out a pocket harmonica and begins to play an old tune that comes to his mind.
His thumb goes out. In the back of his mind, he’s praying he can make it to the arena somehow. Suddenly wheels squeal near him, almost running him off the road. The lights from a giant Ford F-150 blare straight in his face. He stands their rather perplexed, not questioning the situation before a local with buck teeth walks over to him.
“BAH GAWD IT’S THAT DURRIN ZION FELLER! GOLLY, Y’ER MY FAVORITE…”
Zion tunes out the man’s annoying country drawl. He almost sounds like the horrible Clay Byrd promos Lee Best subjected him to over the course of his HOW career. Zion blindly nods; his eyes almost rolling back into his head from the hunger pangs. As the man asks to give him a ride, Zion’s ears perk up.
“Yes! Yes! I’ll give you and your family free tickets to the PRIME event. Just get me down to fucking MEMPHIS STAT! Thank you for the fuckin’ help.”
The ole’ country bumpkin shakes Zion’s hands violently as Zion steps into the truck., praying to God he wasn’t about to be abducted.
One day to go before the PRIME show and Zion’s sleeping on the stairs of the FedEx center during the daytime. He’s hiding in the back corner, hoping not to be noticed both by security and by PRIME event staff. As he’s closing his eyes, he sees a couple of nice loafers in his line of vision. He tries to ignore them, hoping to fade away into an afternoon nap, but the suit continues to block his sunlight. Darin Zion sits up, glaring at a man dressed in a tuxedo, judging him.
“What the fuck do you want, sir? Can’t you see I’m trying to get my afternoon nap, asshat.” Zion barks at the man, wagging his finger. Zion’s slurring his words as he stumbles back to his feet, reeking of alcohol.
“I’m Alan Pritchard, Attorney at Law and on behalf of my client…”
“You’re client my ass, I can rest here any fuckin’ time I want, dickhead. I’ve got a First Amendment right to plant my ass in front of this arena and take a nap. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and all the bullshit.” Zion cuts off the mid sentences, pulling a flask out of his bindle. Zion barely can contain himself, about ready to splash some rum on the man. Zion continues.
“I don’t give a shit about your client…”
“Honestly, he doesn’t give a shit about you and your napping quarters. But you’re using his name.”
The perplexed Darin Zion scratches his head before smashing his finger into the suit’s chest. “What do you mean, his name? Darin Matthews-Zion is my God given name, asshat. No one can…”
The man produces a piece of paper with a trademark with DARIN ZION on the front of it. Zion’s shoulders sink as he bats his eyes. Alan explains the situation to Zion like he’s a dumb third grader. “Your accountant quit. Before he left he sold some of your wrestling trademarks off. My client…”
“FUCK HIM!” Zion yells, cokcing back his fists. “I own my fuckin’ name. No one can fuckin’ touch me. I’ve owned this name for 15 years and…”
“Now it’s no longer yours sir.” Alan says before serving Darin Zion the Cease and Desist letter. The lawyer walks off, leaving the dejected Darin to reflect on his terrible life decisions. Tears roll down his eyes as the scene fades to black.