LESSON FOUR: No Saviors

Blitzkrieg was a military strategy adopted by the Germans during World War II. It involved a huge concentrated attack by using every single military force available to overwhelm the enemy with brutal force and high speed. The beauty of the plan was to keep the attack so fierce & fast, the enemy would remain off-balance and not be able to respond.

Blitz. Brett used to call it blitz. Brutal, remorseless and relentless.

Sean Taylor can feel his world breaking apart at the seams. He hasn’t moved for hours as he’s watching Kandi Reed through her hospital room window. It took 5 hours to make sure that all the splinters were out of her body while trying their best to evaluate her overall condition. Despite their best efforts, Kandi Reed is now in a coma.

He’s been through hell.

The past 24 hours have been the worst of Sean Taylor’s life. As if dealing with the injuries & conditions wasn’t bad enough, he’s now in a conundrum of what to think of his other situation. For now it seems that his past has caught up with him. He’s tried to evade it as best as he could, but not only has it caught up, it’s stared right at him at the face and rattled his very being. Brett Force is back, from the dead. And he just gave him blitz.

Taylor’s mind is so rattled that he can’t think rationally right now. He was just attacked by his deceased mentor, someone who he left when he started out in EUWC. He still remembers the last time he saw him, when he packed up his bags and left. He didn’t want to stay in Brett’s shadow forever. He wanted to be his own man.

“Rules? Are you serious? Kid, the only rules you need in this game are this: the first bell rings, you go blitz, the bell rings again and you’re the last person standing. How complex is that?”

“Maybe that works for you since you don’t want to be caught in a tight spot at your age. But me? I can take a hit and still keep on coming. I can show the best of the best that Sean Taylor is no slouch. Just watch me next year and you’ll know that the rules… the REAL rules… they work!”

“Yeah? Let’s see if that’s what you still think ten years from now. Good luck.”

Ten years. Has it been THAT long? Is this his way of proving his point? Is this Brett Force’s last Ha-Ha? But why now? And more importantly, how? Brett Force is dead, there’s no doubt about it. So who is this person that has rattled Taylor now? An impostor? A crazed fan-boy?

But the worst thing to wonder is just how does he know everything Brett Force invented?

——————————————————————————————-

Since Silver & Briggs made the call, STEALTH has been on the move. The veteran EUWC Superstar knows of Silver’s fondness for Taylor, but right now even he’s feeling sorry for what’s happened. To him, Sean Taylor is someone he holds respect for, but also the man who has the World Championship. Still, champion or not, no one deserved this.

It was only an hour after Mainframe ended that he started driving around Saint Paul to find answers. All throughout the time, he pondered excessively over the whole scenario and can’t come to a conclusion till he sees it for himself. The only thing Silver and Briggs mentioned is that Taylor thinks its Brett Force, but it’s completely impossible. Then again, picking a time when Mainframe was being held in Saint Paul, the city where Taylor trained was well planned.

Which is why a visit to the infamous ‘Dojo’ is in order. The old training center which Force used to run and where he took six years to groom Taylor into becoming a fine athlete. The Dojo has definitely seen better days, but with Force dead it’s been left a derelict monument. While it’s understandable that the streets would be empty at this time of night, this building is now a rotting corpse. No one even bothered locking the door as STEALTH entered. It’s all been pretty much abandoned as STEALTH flashes a light on all the old equipment, rotting away in dust. Yet he feels dread, as if he’s not the only one here.

I’m only going to say this once…

Just then, he’s bathed in white as a giant spotlight shines on top of STEALTH, almost blinding him.

…Old Man…

Out of nowhere, someone leaps at STEALTH but STEALTH manages to flip him over.

…STAY AWAY!

STEALTH heads over to the fallen figure but finds out it’s just a stuffed dummy that was thrown at him. Suddenly, another one is shot right at him but this time STEALTH ducks.

“Is this your idea of sparring? Why don’t you come out where I can see you?”

You shouldn’t be here. Sean Taylor is about to face more tragedy.

Another dummy is shot right at STEALTH which he simply kicks away.

Will you be a part of that tragedy?

Just then, STEALTH is knocked down as Brett Force elbows him in the back.

I hope so.

“Hehehee… for a moment, you even had me fooled. You made me actually believe you are who you say you are. But Force never attacked from behind. And Force is dead.”

Not anymore… to both.

Force attempts a soccer kick but STEALTH blocks and flips Force, however Force lands on his feet. STEALTH gets up and goes for a right hand but Force simply evades.

Sloppy. You’re losing your edge old man.

“You’re one to talk. You stopped breathing 10 years ago. So cut the crap already. You have a lot to answer for and I’m taking you down with me.”

STEALTH manages to grab Force in a bearhug and tightens his grip.

That’ll be a problem. Because first, I’m not finished with Taylor yet.

Force headbutts STEALTH who then has to loosen the grip.

Second, you should realize by now that you can’t beat me…

STEALTH tries to recover but Force back tosses him to the floor.

And finally, you won’t be there to save Taylor.

Force picks up STEALTH and suplex’s him to the concrete floor. He then looks at him in the face.

No saviors. There’s no saving him from me. He needs this. If he needs to break free of the bonds he’s put himself in, he needs this badly.

——————————————————————————————-

“Embarrassed?”

It’s been a while since Taylor moved away from the window. Now in the infirmary, Taylor is listening intently to STEALTH, along with Leo Silver & Michael Briggs.

“You have no idea how much I wanted to beat that punk’s face in Briggs, but really there is something weird about him. It almost feels like a haze around this guy. And there was something else, but I really can’t put my finger on it.”

“So what’s the verdict then? I hope you have something we’re not aware of.”

“Look if you want an expert on Brett Force, you got the wrong guy. I went there for answers only and duked it out with him to see what makes him tick. He’s good, but he’s also using something to get an edge.”

“Like what?”

“Beats me. Anyways, after he left, I did manage to find this among the stuff there.”

STEALTH hands Taylor a small desk photo of a young man who Taylor recognizes instantly as Brett Force when he was young. Problem was, the photograph date on the corner was a little more than 5 years old.

“This… it is him.”

“Are you sure?” STEALTH asks. “If the date on that thing is right, that’s right about the time he was ill. And he couldn’t have looked like that then. Seriously this is getting much too weird for everyone and we’re nowhere near the answers.”

“Let me…” Briggs starts as he takes the picture from Taylor. “I have a few contacts that can help me figure something out. If this isn’t the same person you knew 10 years ago Taylor, then we’ll find out just who exactly he is.”

STEALTH’s right. This hasn’t answered anything for him. Looks like he’ll have to press a lot harder. And why not? It’s not like Taylor’s had any ease so far.

Unfortunately, as Taylor turns to leave, he realizes what he’s about to do is not only desperate, but something he may never forgive himself for.

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