Man in the Making
Sequel to The Rest Will Follow
A/N: When we last left poor Randy, he was gettin' his ass dumped on the beach by fair Tatum. This story picks up on his journey six months after that. Hope y'all Enjoy! (Same format will apply)
Welcome back to the Randy Orton Show. Also known as Watch Randy Fuck Up His Life or Can Randy Get It Together This Time or Is He Destined To Be Alone For Eternity? It's weird, cause six months ago, the last time I talked to y'all, things were kinda melancholy. Okay, really melancholy. I had just split up with Tatum, the love of my life, and I wasn't really sure what happened next.
"A toast to the champion?"
I mean, to be honest, who really knows what happens next in life? Even if you have a five or ten year plan for yourself, there are so many variables. You can't possibly know where you're gonna be tomorrow, let alone five years down the road, can you? You can't predict what comes next. So why try?
"Man, where's your head?"
I shake my head when I realize that Cena is at my side with two dark beer bottles. One for him, one for me. Okay, so maybe life isn't so unpredictable. I mean, six months ago, I was hangin' out in bars after shows, thinkin' about how fucked up life was and about unpredictable things were. Here I am, half a year later, doing the same damn thing. I guess that old saying is true, ya know? The more things change, the more they really do seem to stay the same.
I realize he's looking at me for an answer. That's John for ya. Always asking me some stupid question, lookin' at me like he deserves an answer. Like he's my dad. He's my best friend. He really is. But that doesn't just mean that we do everything together and enjoy hangin' out. It also means that he annoys the hell out of me like nobody else. "Just tired," I lie.
He's my best friend, so why is he the easiest person in the world to lie to? Probably because I know he doesn't believe it. It doesn't fucking matter what I tell him - he knows what I mean. Sometimes he calls me on the bullshit. Sometimes he doesn't. I guess that's why we've been friends for the better part of ten years. He just knows when to shut the hell up. Most of the time.
"I am pretty trying on the stamina," he puffs his chest out in reference to the match we had tonight. Bitch couldn't wear me out if he tried, but I'll let him think so. Just for tonight. Just because I don't wanna talk about it right now.
Before I can answer, a long, thin arm drapes around John's neck and his growth, I mean his wife, is at his side, her chin on his shoulder. "Oh yes, you are," she purrs, accepting his kiss when he turns his head.
Aren't couples supposed to get less disgusting after their married? Stop slobbin' each other down in public and shit like that? I don't think these two got the message. "Wow, that's really," I start and shake my head, "Do you have to stick your tongue down his throat every time you see him?"
Maria shrugs and rests her head on John's shoulder. "Sorry," she apologizes in that way that says she's not sorry at all. "I can't help it. I just keep getting carried away," she giggles that happy little giggle that she always has when she's with John. And when she's not. And pretty much all the damn time. Tatum used to say she was convinced that Maria was on some sort of uppers. I'm not sure she was wrong.
"Alright," I can't help smiling when he whispers something in her ear again. "I'm just gonna go get a . . . way," I point toward the bar and walk away before something I really don't wanna see starts up in the corner.
Don't get me wrong. I'm the guy who used to have no problem mounting my girl in a corner booth during a party like this. But it's been six months since I had a girl to get on top of. Really, it's been over two years since I've had a girlfriend I could really do that shit with. Tatum and I spent a year and a half apart, and even when we did get back together, we never quite got back to that point. Not to the 'hanging all over each other in public' point.
I know what you're thinking. It's been six months and I haven't found another girlfriend? How did I do it? Randy Orton didn't find a single woman who caught his eye in that time? Well, I didn't say all that. I've hooked up, but I haven't really had another relationship. For a few months, I was tryin' to do that whole, noble 'workin' on me' thing. After that, I got bored and realized that fuckin' one night stands were a lot more fun than putting myself out there in another relationship. Especially since the only two I've ever had have ended very, very badly.
Doesn't mean I don't notice when a sexy woman is around. And right now, right next to me at the bar, is the epitome of sexy. She's leaning forward on her elbows, her blonde hair flowing over her shoulders. She's not a ring rat - I can tell by the fact that she's wearing jeans and a long-sleeved tee shirt instead of a mini skirt and halter. And by the fact that she barely managed to look at me out of the corner of her eye before blushing and turning back to the bar. Ring rats aren't nearly that subtle.
"Hi," I offer when she steals another look my way.
I'm used to seeing girls blush, but this one's cheeks turn an adorable shade of pink as she raises her eyes. She's surprised that I talked to her. I get that a lot. But it looks good on her, not coy or fake. "Hi," she whispers, barely audible over the eighties rock blaring throughout the hotel bar.
I think I've seen her before. "You look familiar."
She nods as the bartender brings her a tumbler of light alcohol. "Yeah," she tucks her hair behind her ear and offers me an electrifying smile. I've seen her before, but I've never seen her like this. Wow, she's beautiful. "I'm around all the time," she acknowledges, her elbow on the bar as she turns slightly toward me. It's not enough to look flirty. Just enough to let me know that it's okay to talk to her. "My boyfriend works here."
Boyfriend. Right. I know that shouldn't matter. I mean, I just noticed her, for fuck's sake. Not like I know anything about her. Not like I should care. But there's this weird feeling of disappointment in my gut. "Well, I'm Randy," I introduce and she nods as if she already knew that.
Taking the hand that I'm offering, she shakes and her skin is warm against mine. It feels right. As right as a total stranger's touch can feel. "Jamie," she speaks, her soft smile broadening. "It's nice to meet you."
Have you ever met somebody in a bar or at a concert or something? Somebody that you've never met before? Never even really seen before? And yet, you can't help wanting to know everything about them? In that one instant, you just get this feeling that there are a million fascinating stories inside their mind? That's kinda how this feels with Jamie.
Of course, I can't ask anything because a booming voice I would know in my sleep sounds from behind her. "What the hell is this?"
Jamie turns and smiles up at the man who is now protectively wrapping his arm around her waist. "Josh, Sweetie, hi," she speaks in a voice much different than the one she used with me. One of forced happiness that thinly veils fear of getting caught doing something she shouldn't have been doing. "I was just ordering another drink," she shows him her glass as if to prove her point.
To be honest, I can't blame her. I'm not scared of many people in the world, but Josh Lafferty freaks me out a little bit. He's a little smaller than me, but he's notorious for being one of the biggest asses ever to take charge of the WWE road crew. He likes things his way, and he's not afraid to cut a fuckin' kid down in front of everyone. It's not a bad quality to have - he's good at what he does, I guess. He's just a fuckin' dick about it.
"Another one?" he asks, his eyebrow shooting up to his fake-blond hairline. I wonder if he bummed that bottle offa Shelton Benjamin? What color is that anyway? It's such a weird white/yellow color, ya know? "You jealous of your mom's binges? Tryin' to catch up there, James?"
His laugh makes me wanna cringe, but the mortified look on Jamie's face makes me wanna hit something. Preferably his stupid mouth. "Dude."
"What?" he fires back without a beat. His face is suddenly serious, like he wants to fight me in front of everyone. I can't tell if he's drunk or if he's just being himself. "It's a joke," he spits in my direction, clearly not pleased with my presence. Not that I can blame him, I'd feel threatened by me, too, if I were him. "James knows it a joke, don'tcha baby?"
And I don't wanna punch him anymore. I want her to. I want her to haul off and beat his ass for everyone to see. I want her to stand up for herself. But she doesn't. She just smiles that forced, painful smile and nods. "Yeah," she answers with no passion in her voice whatsoever.
And everything I thought I wanted to know about her dissolves into the tense air around us. I spent long enough standing up for somebody who didn't give a shit to stand up for herself. Spent too fucking long trying to save somebody who decided that she could do it better on her own. Fine. She wants to take care of it herself, I'm out. "Whatever," I just roll my eyes and turn on my heel. I've been down that road. And I don't fucking care.
"What the fuck was that about?" Josh's voice carries as I make my way back through the crowd. I'd rather watch Cena dry hump his wife than watch Jamie take that shit from Lafferty. "I was gone for all of thirty seconds," his voice only raises as I move away from them. "I shoulda known you were gonna act like a whore tonight."
I'm not sure what Jamie says in response. She's not shouting for the whole bar to hear. But clearly Josh doesn't like it, because he fires back with, "Oh, now you don't want an audience? You were about suck that fucker's dick in fronta the whole bar a second ago."
My hands ball into fists without any permission from my brain. I don't fucking care, I remind myself as my shoulders stiffen. I don't fucking care enough to go back and beat the shit outta him. Even though he deserves it. I don't fucking care. Even though I'm already turning on my heel to head back and take care of his big, fucking mouth.
Until a hand presses into the center of my chest. "Don't," John's voice advises firmly.
"Don't?" I ask as I watch Josh grab Jamie's arm and drags her toward the entrance of the bar. "Are you not fuckin' seein' this shit?" This shit that I don't fucking care about?
But John just shakes his head and withdraws his hand. "Listen to me for a second." His tone is that serious one that he gets when he's trying to make sure you know he's all business. "You are the champion, man. You have fought your way back from bull shit and every other obstacle. Don't get your ass suspended over a chick you just met. Think."
I take a few breaths and think about what he says. He's right. I've worked too hard to let some shit I don't even fuckin' care about dethrone me now. I'm not gonna let this shit alter the course of my life. That dickhead and his weak-willed girlfriend are not gonna fuck my life up. I've let women do that enough. I don't fuckin' care anymore.
"I'm goin' to my room," I announce, turning around to make my exit. Let John and Maria shake their heads and talk about how sad I've seemed for the last few months. Let them plot how to fix me, how to make it all better. I don't fuckin' care.