A/N Alrighty, I'm only doing this once, because, well, after that it's just flat out pointless. Disclaimer: I own only the characters I myself create and their personalities. So, there's that. Also! For the most part I will use wrestlers real names. As of now the only one I think I'll stick with the ring name is Evan Bourne. I mean really? It just sounds better then Matt Korklan. And now, without further ado, I give to you Love of a Tigress.
Chapter One--Cirque de Animal
"Catalyn!" Dave Finlay shouted down the corridor backstage. The taping had just ended and he was trying to get the attention of a young woman who looked rather lost down the hall. He had only recognized her for the brilliant flame red hair with unruly curls that was pulled back into messy ponytail.
Her head whipped around and a huge smile spread across her features. The young woman barreled down the hallway and launched herself into Finlay's arms. She smiled happily, "Uncle Dave!" She kissed his cheek with a happy laugh.
As the two hugged a small group of wrestlers had formed around them. Finlay smiled and turned to his colleagues, "Gentlemen, this is my lovely niece, Catalyn Reidy. She's me sister's little girl." Catalyn smiled and shook hands with everyone. Finlay continued, "Kitten, this here is Tommy Laughlin, Greg Helms, Jay Reso, and Evan Bourne." Before the men stood a woman any of them could easily depict as Irish. She had wild, unruly, curly red hair, creamy skin with a slight dashing of freckles, and the classic green eyes.
Catalun grinned, "It's a pleasure to meet yah. Uncle Dave talks about his work here in the WWE all the time and that I had to visit at some point." She reached a hand. She turned to each wrestler in turn and spoke to them in order of how they were introduced to her, "Tommy, I've been a big fan even since I was a kid. I've always wanted to meet you. And Mr. Helms, I loved you as the Hurricane. Jay, it's a right pleasure." Lastly she turned to Evan. She gave him a small grin and tiled her head down as a tiny, but slightly noticeable blush came across her cheeks, "It's great to meet yah Evan, aside from my uncle you're my favorite." There was one thing each wrestler noticed about Catalyn above everything else, though. If someone thought Finlay had a thick Irish accent, Catalyn's was even more predominant.
Evan smiled, "Thanks. It's a pleasure to meet you as well." He just barely saw the touch of pink on her cheeks and mentally smirked at it.
Catalyn turned to her uncle, "Uncle Dave ye are comin' tomorrow aren't ye? Please say ye are!"
Finlay shrugged, "I don't know. My flight is at six an--"
Catalyn gave him puppy dog eyes, "Oh please! My part of the show will be over by five! I promise! Please Uncle Dave! Please!!!"
Christian laughed, "What is Catalyn beggin' you for, Finlay?"
The Irish Brawler chuckled, "Kitten has a show tomorrow and it ends just before my flight out of here. I might not be able to make it."
Greg tilted his head to the side, "What show?"
Catalyn smiled proudly, "I'm a part of Cirque de Animal. We're a circus of sorts, but in every act we work with animals. We've got a show here in town tomorrow and I really want Dave to go because I don't know the next time it would be even half as convenient."
Tommy smiled, "Ah c'mon Dave, if you miss your flight you can always reschedule." Catalyn beamed a smile at Tommy who smiled back at her. Now all eyes were on Finlay expectantly.
He huffed, "Alright, I'll go, and only because I know if I say no you'll bound and gag me and drag me there." Everyone laughed at his overdramatic remark.
Catalyn smiled at the others, "Do any of yah want to come?"
Christian shook his head, "I would, but my flight is at noon."
Greg nodded, "Same here."
Tommy huffed, "Lucky…I've got to get to the hotel anyway and pack, my flight is at midnight." The guys gave Tommy their sympathies. Midnight flights were never fun.
Evan gave Catalyn a grin, "I can go, my flight isn't until eight tomorrow night."
Catalyn beamed happily, "Great! I'll just have to put ye name down. When you go to enter just tell 'em your name and that's all it takes for ye two to get in." The three stood and chatted for a bit longer until it was late. Catalyn had to get back to where Cirque de Animal was performing for one last practice run before the performance the next day. Evan and Finlay just had to get sleep. Everyone spent the next day getting ready for shows or flights.
As the evening approached Catalyn was in her dressing room getting ready. She adorned her ring attire and worked her unruly hair into sleek curls down her back. With skillful hands she worked her makeup and adorned her jewelry. Stepping back, she looked in the full length mirror. A smirk fell over her lips. When someone thought of a 'lion tamer' they thought of the classic black and red suit with a top hat accompanied with a whip and chair, not what Catalyn looked like. She wore a tiger print bikini like outfit that faded from orange to white with black stripes with a sheer, champagne colored wrap around her waist. She was barefoot and wore symmetrical jewelry. Two anklets, two bracelets, a necklace, two pairs of earrings, and a glittering gem in her belly ring.
Someone knocked on her door, "Cat! You're on in five!"
With one last look at herself in the mirror Catalyn slipped out into the hall and gave a nod to one of the stage hands. The show had been going for a while already and her act was next. Walking out to the curtain she waited and watched was a monitor.
Out in the stands Evan and Finlay sat in the center of the front row with a perfect view of the stage. Suddenly the lights went dark and everything was black. Finlay chuckled, "Oh no! Mark is here!" He whispered to Evan, who started to snicker. With a flash one spot light came on to illuminate a single person to the side of the stage. It was the ring master. He tipped his hat to the crowd and a bit of fog began to play over the ground, "Ladies and gentlemen, from the rolling hills of Ireland and the thick jungles of India Cirque de Animal proudly shows the beauty of both animal, and human." The spot light cut off and when the room began to lighten ever so slightly into a green haze the ring master was gone.
Now, center stage, stood Catalyn. Her head looked down and to the right. Her feet were lost in the mist. From somewhere music began to play. It was slow and soothing and even the most novice of music lovers could tell you it was traditional Celtic music playing. In the center of the stage Catalyn began to move with the music. Her body bending and twisting in perfect time with the beat of the music. She seemed to move flawlessly as she danced around the perimeter of the ring.
Glancing away from Catalyn for just a moment, Evan could see that the entire male population had their eyes locked on the young Irish woman. When he looked back he realized they had all right to. Evan wasn't going to say it, mainly because he had a feeling Finlay would maul him if he did, but he couldn't help but think that Catalyn had that kind of beauty that you saw everyday and when the woman changed her mood, her beauty changed with it.
Suddenly the crowd gave a gasp and jumped a little. No one had seen the tigers begin to pad softly into the arena and began circling around with Catalyn. When she made her way back to center stage and looked up at the crowd for the first time in her performance the entire crowd counted the tigers. Six in total. Six large orange and black cats, three to each side of Catalyn. Then as Catalyn made an arc with her arms each big cat began to give a low grumble like purr. When the room hummed with the sound the whole troupe gave a step forward, still in time with the music. They had taken three steps before halting. Out of the mist a large white tiger just seemed to materialize. The tiger moved to stand in front of Catalyn. The eight figures stood alone for just a few moments before the music began to pick up speed and soon the music could be recognized as classic River Stomp music.
Catalyn grinned happily as she placed her hands on her hips and began to step. Even barefoot she could step it out perfectly. The tigers around her leaped and jumped in time with the music. Soon the people in the audience understood. They were dancing! She and the tigers were all dancing together!
Finlay nodded his approval in the stands and turned to glance at Evan. His eyes were locked onto Catalyn as she spun and danced the dance she had known all her life. As the old Irish man gazed around he could see that his niece had the attention of every man in the room in a way that peeved him just a little. But this was her job, and by the look on her face, she loved what she did.
Soon the music played out it's last couple beats Catalyn and the tigers got back into their line. Three normal tigers to each side of Catalyn and the white one in front of them. She through her head back and held her arms wide. The tigers all at once let out a roar that shook the arena. Catalyn bowed and the tigers dipped their heads.
The crowd applauded with a standing ovation. After one more bow Catalyn and the tigers left the ring. In the stands Finlay gave Evan a nudge, "C'mon you, we're headed backstage now." Evan just nodded. The two stood up and walked from their seats and made their way to the backstage entrance.
The guard stopped them, "Where do you think you're goin'?"
Finlay gave the man a look, "Catalyn Reidy is my niece. I'm Dave Finlay."
The guard looked him over before pulling out a walkie-talkie, "Yeah Jim, I've got a Dave Finlay here, says he's Cat's uncle." "Yeah Cory, I'll go confirm with Cat. Tell 'em to wait." Cory nodded to Finlay, "Wait a minute please." The three stood in silence before Cory's walkie-talkie beeped and a voice came on, "Cory love, I thought I told ye if my uncle came 'round to let him in no questions asked? Let him in and if he has an Evan Bourne with him, he can come back too." Evan chuckled at they heard Catalyn from the other end. Cory chuckled, "Uh, sorry Cat, I forgot." He opened the door and nodded Finlay and Evan back.
The two made their way through the few halls until they found Catalyn's room. Finlay knocked, "Kitten?"
"It's open! C'mon in!" Opening the door Finlay and Evan stepped into her dressing room. Catalyn was at her vanity pulling her hair back. She had already changed and was back in a pair of jeans. She smiled at them, "Enjoy the show?"
Finlay smiled, "I did, but I don't like that outfit you prance around in."
Catalyn gave his cheek a kiss, "I'm sorry, but I can't dance in anything else and I don't want to bring dance in the traditional garb and such." She smiled at him, "Anyway, at least I'm not some pole dancer. I've got me values and they keep me from sinkin' that low." She then turned to Evan, "So, did you enjoy the show?"
Evan smiled, "Yeah, how did you train the tigers to move like that?"
Catalyn shrugged, "I didn't, they just know. When I came to America and a scout from here recruited me to see if I would be able to work with any of the animals. I just took to me tigers and they took to me."
Finlay smiled, "That's me girl. Now, I'm sorry, but I've got to go, my flight is soon."
Catalyn frowned, "Alright." She gave him a kiss on the cheek, "I just hope I get to see you sooner then last time." Finlay nodded, gave her a kiss on the cheek, and left. Catalyn sighed heavily and turned to Evan, a smile coming back onto her lips, "Hey, you don't have to leave for a while, right?"
Evan smiled and nodded, "Yeah. Why?"
Catalyn snatched his hand and pulled him down the hall, "I want you to meet me girls." Evan, confused, just let her tug him along. Her…girls? Then Evan realized what she meant when they passed through a door into the large outer enclosure the troupe had for all the animals. She meant the tigers!
The red head grinned, "Now, they may be a bit shy at first, but I can assure you they are sweethearts for sure." She lead him over to an enclosure within the enclosure and opened the gate. Pulling him in after her she clicks her tongue, "Girls!"
Grumbling sounds were made as the seven tigers filed out of a little 'cat house' of sorts on the far end of the enclosure. The white on led the group as they approached Catalyn. Suddenly, she stopped and gave a nasty hiss at Evan. Catalyn rolled her eyes, "Be nice!" The tigress calmed down and approached them cautiously.
Evan took a little step back. He wasn't afraid, it was more the fact that these cats had to weigh a good three hundred or more pounds and those odds meant he was at a disadvantage. Alright…that's not the whole truth…Evan was quite scared of the big cats.
Catalyn knelt down and stroked the white tigress's head, "Let me introduce ye. This here is my baby, Calypso." she stood up and pointed down the row of tigresses from front to back, "That's Venus and her sister Aphrodite. Behind them is Terra. That smaller one is Irene. The pretty one with the funky stripes across her eyes is Persephone. The last one is the youngest of them all is Minerva. Before I came here the lady who worked with the tiger's was a huge Greek and Roman fan so they all have Greek and Roman names that are the same as a goddess. All but Calypso, she's named after a nymph."
Evan reached out a careful hand. Venus stepped forward and sniffed his hand before giving him a nuzzle. Her sister Aphrodite and the little one Irene stepped up next. Soon all the tigresses were enjoying Evan's presence. Evan smiled as the big cats began to purr loudly as they nudged their heads against him and licked his fingers.
Catalyn smiled, "See, I told you they were sweethearts. Me girls haven't raised a paw to anyone in a long time."
Evan looked up to her, "After one of them caught you?"
Catalyn, who had been walking towards the little 'cat house' stopped dead. She turned back to him, "What do you mean?"
He shrugged and scratched Terra under the chin, "During your performance I saw a scar on your hip…Not that I was lookin' or anything! I-I just saw it, that's all."
He watched as Catalyn turned her back to him and looked inside the house, "That happened about a month after I got here. I didn't quite realize that at the time Calypso was pregnant--I hadn't been told--and I got too close when giving her a bath. She caught my hip in her claws and dug in deep. It didn't hit bone and I was lucky that she missed all the important stuff in there…" Her hand fell down to her hip, "It was an accident and I don't hold anything against her. I love me Calypso. Ever since then we've just been really close." She gave a little chuckle, "That's why I wear that wrap. It's supposed to hide it so people don't see. If I didn't have it…well…I would actually wear something else. Flouncing' 'round in a bikini is a little slutty." She reached into the house and tapped the floor, "C'mere babe."
Evan watched closely. Was there another tiger that wasn't in the performance? He was answered when a small meowing sound came and a little tiger came out. The tiger was small and a very pale orange with chocolate stripes.
Catalyn picked him up and held him. He was bigger then a house cat, the size of a medium dog or so, but Catalyn had no problem holding him, "And this is Calypso's son. She had had three cubs, but sadly Arawn and Dagda died a little after birth, leaving my Cuchulainn as an only child."
Evan tilted his head to the side, "Arawn? Dagda? Cuchulainn?"
She smiled, "Irish gods. They are more like heroic figures and all. Cuchulainn was a tough-guy. He was the hero of legends and adventures." Evan gave the little tiger a stroke on the head. Calypso walked up and gave a little mrroow. Catalyn put Cuchulainn down and Calypso began cleaning her son. She smiled, "The father is in another enclosure with our males. We keep them apart and when Cuchu gets old enough he'll go live with them. Until then he lives with the girls." Calypso and "Cuchu" as Catalyn had nicknamed him began to play around and soon all the tigers began to play.
Evan and Catalyn left the tigers to themselves and headed back to her dressing room. Sitting in her dressing room the began idle chit chat to pass some time. They talked about everything from wrestling to the Cirque to the weather and places they had been then to Catalyn's home in Ireland and Evan's home in St. Louis. Nothing seemed to escape their conversation. Soon, however, time called upon Evan and he had to leave in order to catch his plane on time.
As he walked out of the dressing room he stopped, "Hey Catalyn?"
She looked up at him, "Yes?"
He gave a smirk, "Do you have a cell phone?"
She chuckled, "Yes, why?"
He smirked, "Think I could borrow it. Mine's in the car and I need to text someone real quick."
She shrugged and pulled her phone from her bag, "Sure." She tossed her phone to him.
Evan clicked away on the buttons for a few seconds before handing her phone back, "Thanks." With that he left.
When Catalyn looked at her phone she saw that she had a text…from herself…Checking her text it read a simple message: Chek ur contacts. Being curious she did as the text said to and smirked. She had a new contact. Evan Bourne. With a smile she grabbed her bag and pocketed her phone. She left the arena with a big smile and headed back to her hotel room for the night.
A/N So, what'd yah think? You like? You don't like? Please tell me via message or review!!! Also, if any of those reading this know of my Only Time Will Tell story I'm taking a break from that one. I'm a little brain dead on it and a new, fresh idea will get my ideas flowing!