A/N: For those of you who are true fans of my work - those who read everything I write - I feel like I owe you this caution: This is NOT a normal Queen of Kaos story. First of all, it's AU - meaning it's starring a few faces you know from the WWE, but they're not wrestlers. Also, though most of my stories have been rated M, this one contains adult subject matter, and I don't just mean some fuck words and a little sex. Strong drug themes, as well as death, and what comes after, are discussed in this story. An open mind, and the ability to take yourself out of the world in which these characters usually exist, is essential in reading this piece.
I am incredibly proud of this story and am, in no way, apologizing for any of the content. I just felt that, out of respect for those of you who have supported me thus far, I should, at least, warn you.
As always, your reviews are welcomed. And I hope you all Enjoy!
"Sweetheart, I am so sorry for your loss."
Courtney Lane gave the elderly woman's hand a squeeze and smiled slightly. "Thank you," she nodded graciously. "How did you know him?"
Trying to focus her attention on the same story she had already heard a thousand times over the last few hours, Courtney shifted her weight from one black pump to the other and pushed a strand of blonde hair behind her ear.
Not for the first time in the afternoon, she thanked her lucky stars that she had been raised the daughter of a United States senator. Being brought up a debutant with the best private schooling had taught her well how to deal with people who were bouncing on her last nerve.
And as time wore on, Courtney found that today was all about nerves. The nerve of people who barely knew her husband, all parading past his casket, pretending to be broken-hearted over his death. The nerve of his co-workers, showing up in tears over the loss of man they could barely stand during office hours. The nerve of their families, to stand to her right and left as though they were posing for some social page photo-op instead of grieving the loss of a man they all loved.
As the woman passed by, Courtney looked to her left, smiling at her father. "Daddy, I'm going to freshen up a bit," she whispered.
The senator nodded and patted his only daughter's back gently as she stepped away from the crowd and into a long, dim hallway. Finding her wool coat, she pulled it tightly around her thin frame and slipped out the back door. Three hours of meeting with fake-ass people who pretended to give a damn about her husband was not her idea of an enjoyable afternoon.
Lighting a cigarette, she smiled at the memory of the moment she had first laid eyes on Dave Batista. She had been a third year Communications student at Columbia, prepping for life in her father's footsteps. As a segment producer for ABC news, his first duty had been a piece about Vermont senator Sean Lane.
Exhaling, she chuckled slightly at the way he had slipped her his business card and told her to call if she ever wanted to dish on her famous father. She had called a week later to tell him she was ready to talk, but when they met for dinner, the conversation never quite made it to her dad.
For nearly a year, they kept things low key. She finished school, he built his reputation as one of the most determined and talented producers in television news. And when they finally made an appearance together, at the Emmy Awards, the world took notice. He was one of People Magazine's "Sexiest Men Alive" that year, and he was dating the daughter of the newest Presidential hopeful.
Of course, it was risky. They both knew there had to be a conflict of interest there somewhere, but their attraction to one another was stronger than they cared to fight. They were infamous for working hard, and playing harder. Tabloids couldn't get enough of the politically powerful and stunningly beautiful couple, especially their rumored affinity for strip clubs and party drugs. But nothing had ever been proven, and they often laughed at how the attention didn't seem to hurt their careers.
Sucking another drag on her cigarette, Courtney thought about the night Dave had proposed to her. Her father had lost his bid for the presidency, and she had been more than a little broken-hearted. All of the work she had put in seemed for naught, and there was nothing that would put her glowing smile back in place. Until he dropped to one knee in the living room of their little DC apartment.
They were married fourteen months later, in a ceremony fit for celebrities. Things hadn't always been smooth, but even as she finished her cigarette, Courtney had to admit that there hadn't been a single moment she would have changed. And for all of his faults and flaws, she wouldn't have changed anything about him, either.
"Those things will kill you, ya know," a deep voice sounded behind her. Turning on her heel, she smiled at Randy Orton. He had been Dave's assistant at the station for the last three years, and his sidekick out of the office since day one. He was at their house more than he was at his own, and Courtney couldn't help but smile when he stood beside her and nudged her with his shoulder.
"So will cocaine. But I think I saw you snortin' that last weekend, Orton," she winked.
He shook his head. "Nah, I think you have me confused with your husband," he smiled and then shook his head. "Why does that feel like the wrong joke to crack right now?"
Leaning her head back, Courtney let herself laugh. "Are you fucking kidding? It's true," she sighed, shaking her blonde locks and turning twinkling eyes to the pavement. "I mean, I know there's a level of decorum to be maintained on an occasion like this, but for fuck's sake, man," she sighed, digging into her pocket to light another cigarette. "Dave was a great professional, and a hell of a guy, but he was no fuckin' saint."
Randy offered her a light and nodded his head in concession. "Fucker owed me a hundred bucks," he chuckled.
Crossing her arms, she nodded and rolled her eyes. "What was this one for?" she asked good-naturedly. At least with Randy, she knew she could count on honesty. If anyone at this shindig would remember Dave as he was, not as they wished he had been, it was the man beside her.
"Stupid son of a bitch thought Alexander was gonna run all over Pittsburgh in the Bowl," he laughed, shaking his head and pocketing the cash. "I know it ain't right to speak ill of the dead, but come on, Court," he sighed.
Though she smiled at him, the weight of the past week's events seemed to crash in on her in that moment. With her hands in her pockets, she looked at Randy with wide brown eyes. "The media's gonna have a field day when this story breaks for real," she told him.
Randy nodded. "Does your father know what really happened?"
Shaking her head and raising her eyebrow, Courtney almost laughed. "Are you kidding me? I fully intend to be out of the country before that shit comes down."
She was good at masking her emotions - a true politician through and through. But Randy could see, just behind her eyes. She was hurting, and she didn't know how to express it. "Come here," he said, pulling her into his arms without warning.
Pressed against his expensive suit, breathing in a scent not unlike Dave's, Courtney allowed herself to let go, even just a little. She wouldn't cry - certainly not today, maybe not for a long time - but she would let him see her pain. "What are we gonna do, Orton?" she asked quietly.
"We're gonna live our lives. I can talk shit about Dave all day, but the fucker knew how to live," he whispered, kissing the top of her head.
Stepping back, she nodded and sniffled slightly. "Can you just tell my mom and dad that I'll be in shortly?" He walked back inside the building as Courtney gripped the railing and looked out over the city once more. "I miss you already, Lover," she whispered.
Little did she know, her tiny voice was heard on the other side of the Great Beyond. "Me, too, Princess. Me, too."