Master of the Ring
Anthrocon 2002 Chairman Choice Award Winner
His manservant looked up from the finely crafted shirt he was working on, "Yes, master?"
"Are you done with that shirt yet?" he looked at his servant beckoning for the answer to be yes.
Andres, "Just one more pressing."
A fine mist of water snorted out his nose as an angry frown burst onto his muzzle, "Hurry up boy, my PUBLIC awaits me." He looked back at the fogged mirror, watching his slowly appearing stern faced black muzzle reflect back. "I'm waiting!"
Andres finished his last press and checked for any lasting stitch. Eduardo looked back over his shoulder giving an impatient stare, "I haven't got all day!"
Andres silently slid a box next to his master's massive hooves and stepped up to his massive frame. Eduardo lowered his arm and let Andres easily slide the jacket onto him, with a gruff Eduardo stood tall again, moving his jacket into its final resting place.
Andres scurried and snipped the sides of the tassels on his fine master's clothing. Quietly working Andres thought, and a question came into his mind, a question that he never thought to ask. "Sir can I ask you a question?" Eduardo stood quiet and Andres didn't expect an answer. Eduardo doesn't work like that. He was ALWAYS quiet before a match, he didn't even pause in his work he quickly snipped off the remaining strays of golden strings, not thinking his master would ever answer.
In silence, Eduardo cocked his head and looked back at his timid servant as he hurriedly worked on his massive outfit. Eduardo waited in silence until his eyes met the timid raccoon, "You can speak boy." His voice bellowed and echoed in the tunnel.
Andres timidly looked away from his master, not knowing if he should say anything. His master looked back admiring his muscle bound self in the mirror. The pressure away Andres knot in his voice removed and the words timidly came out, "Why do you do this, why do you fight every week?" Andres looked into the mirror watching Eduardo's proud facial expression become more thoughtful, "No one has asked me that question." He pondered and thought as his servant quickly made his suit as perfect as his own body, "I was young, just like you. On the streets, living in a box, unable to make enough to even feed my body. One night a man came to me, he saw me living in my cardboard box and took me in. He fed me, he taught me how to live, and he showed me life." He looked back at Andres and he smiled and nodded at him. "And he taught me how to fight. At first I didn't like it but I watched him a few matches, and I reluctantly watched and learned. But alas, his biggest fight, his most grandiose fight was not for him" Eduardo paused, and he looked up. He sniffled and wiped away the solitary tear flowing from his eye, "On the night of the grand fight, on that faithful day I was ushered to his bed side. He lay there weak and frail, a shell of the man that he had been," He turned around and looked at Andres, "He looked me straight in the eye and asked me with his final breath to take his place, to fight the good fight and become the master of the arena!" Eduardo stood up proud, "I went out there and fought the fight he couldn't do. And I won it for him. And on that night I promised as long as I can carry his name I would fight for him, fight for his memory, I fight for his honor!"
With that he proudly grabbed his red cape and threw it over his shoulder, walking past Andres, ignoring his insignificant presence. Walking into the bright sunlight, the crowd instantly went wild over his massive presence and perfect body. They wildly responded to the legend, ladies throwing flowers, the men chanting, and the children cheering. Eduardo moved his head slowly watching the spectacle in front of him, smiling, letting their warm glowing love flow. The air filled with roses, he snapped the best rose, the most perfect rose that floated by. Slowly and deliberately he raised his snout to the crowd and a hand in the air waving at his friends, his admires, his soon to be lovers living among the crowd.
All the while Andres looked out at the spectacle shaking his head mumbling, "Utter bullshit - He never left his mansion till he was 18 who does he think I am, an idiot!" Andres looks out at Eduardo, proudly standing, waving, a walking legend soaking the love, the utter spotlight of the ring. Andres smiled and took one last look at his master, "It didn't matter how he got there, he is the master of the ring."
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