Chapter Sixty Nine
Wednesday October 14th, 2010: Mid-Afternoon
Rodriguez Residence / Jog to Fit Athletic Club
“Mr. Lawrence! Hey, it’s Randy Rodriguez here!” He had a smile on his face and his arm wrapped tightly around Kolleen. She was sliding her fingers up and down his chest and abdomen as he continued the conversation. “I need to discuss my return to the ring.” He stated. “It’s nice to hear your voice Randy. How do you think you’re ready to come back? You were gone for a week now and from what I’ve heard, you were walking with the aid of that cane.” Mr. Lawrence’s skepticism was fully apparent in his voice.
“That I was sir; that I was! But things have changed. I don’t honestly understand how this worked but I don’t need a cane anymore!” “How’s that?” Randy kept his gaze locked on Nelson, who was now being handcuffed by the cops. “You’re under arrest for breaking and entering as well as the attempted murder of Diana Rodriguez. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be held against you in the court of law.” A dark tan officer stated. “I was told to do this! He told me to do this!” Nelson yelled.
They dragged him outside and tossed him into the police car. “Was that a man being read his Miranda rights?” Mr. Lawrence asked. Randy sighed and then gulped hard. “Yes sir, it was. A man by the name, Nelson Orasheno broke into my mother’s house, while I was gone, and tried to strangle her to death. I don’t know why, and frankly, I just want this to be over.”
“Jesus Randy, I had no idea! But how does that explain why you can walk?” “That’s just it, sir, I don’t know.” Randy mustered up the strength to retell the story another time, followed by a minute pause from his boss. “Y…You can even verify it by sight, if you wish to meet up with me sometime soon.” Randy saw Kolleen’s head resting on his side as she fell into a peaceful sleep. He looked over at his mother who was being tended to by Penny and Dr. Farber.
“If what I hear is true, then I must meet up with you. Hmm… How about you come by the Valley View Casino Center tomorrow? We’ll be holding one more event there before packing up and moving to New York. If you seem fit, I’ll give you the week to work out and get back in the game then I’ll bring ya back for your return match.” These words felt like music to Randy’s ears. “Thank you so much sir! I’ll be there tomorrow.” “You’re welcome Randy. I’ll send your driver, Jack over to pick you and if you wish, Kolleen can come. See you then.” Mr. Lawrence said before hanging up.
Chills were running up and down Randy’s spine. He slid his phone back into his pocket and continued to watch Penny and Dr. Farber. The entire day had felt as if it were put into overdrive but according to the clock it was only three thirty-five P.M. Randy couldn’t help but feel excited. He got up and rested Kolleen’s head gingerly onto a pillow. She grabbed a hold of it and cuddled it tightly. “What’s going on Randy?” Penny asked him. She saw him as he walked up slowly towards their mother.
“I don’t know. I’m honestly baffled by today’s events. It’s just mind boggling.” He hopped on the ends of his feet for a short while. Diana was fast asleep now, and her heart monitor was beeping regularly. A police officer tapped Randy on the shoulder causing him to look back. “Yes sir?” Randy asked. The man was as tall as he was, with a wide jaw and chin as well as a wide head. He was bald and had green eyes. “My name is Dylan Jose, I am from the San Diego Police Department and wanted to ask you a few questions.” He replied in a raspy voice.
“Absolutely sir, but could we do this outside? I don’t want to wake my mother and my girlfriend’s finally asleep after God only knows how long.” Dylan nodded and guided Randy outside onto the front lawn. “Please, take a seat.” He said. Randy sat down on the front steps and looked directly into the man’s eyes. “How did you come to find Mr. Orasheno?” Dylan asked. “I’m so overwhelmed…”
“That’s understandable sir, but I need to know how the events unfolded.” “Sorry officer. I came into the house, and with all my strength, I launched myself on top of Mr. Orasheno.” Randy continued on with the conversation, explaining everything in blow by blow detail, even though he thought the explanations were over. When he finished, Dylan seemed both impressed and nervous at the same time. “That seems both accurate and a bit weird. The whole pins and needles thing.” Dylan said.
“Believe me Officer, I know.” He got to his feet and stretched his legs a bit. Dylan put his notepad away and nodded at him. “I’ll head back to the station and report what I have to the Chief, thank you for your time.” “You have yourself a good day Officer!” Randy stated. He walked back inside and ran up to his room. For some reason he felt like running and working out so he changed his clothes to a pair of jogging pants and a baggy long sleeved shirt.
He then wrote a quick note stating that he was heading to a fitness gym named: Fit Athletic in down town San Diego. He copied the note and stuck one to his mother’s bed, and the other onto the arm rest near Kolleen’s head. He verbally told Penny where he was going and then headed out the door. The day was still young even though the sun was already preparing to set. He pulled out his cell phone and opened the GPS. “The quickest jogging route to Fit Athletics, down town San Diego.” he said into it. “Fit Athletics is a half mile away, take right at the end of Hillside Drive.” his phone replied.
He had an armband on that held his phone in place and started jogging. He couldn’t believe how alive he felt. Within a very brief period, Randy was already at the end of the driveway and was jogging down alongside the road. He barely felt his heart beating, meaning he was still very well in shape. His mind had been buzzing with the hope of returning to the ring which seemed to push him harder than ever before. “Take a left on eighth avenue in about thirty feet.” his cell phone said. Randy could see directions on these big signs written in dark blue and white lettering. It read: Fit Athletics and had an arrow pointing to where his GPS stated.
He jogged in place and gazed down the road. Just down at the opposite end was another one of those signs so he checked for traffic and sprinted across, heading towards the next sign. His spirit was soaring higher than it ever had before. He never thought in a million years he’d be able to do what he was doing now. Randy jogged past a bunch of people who stopped and stared at him. Some even took their phones out and began recording him or snapped pictures. He had jogged by a bunch of stores a couple of delis and a bakery, at the very end.
Once he gazed down the road the gym came into focus. The entire front was made of multiple glass windows with a black circle above the front door. The word: fit was stamped into this circle. Randy decided to jog a bit slower to try and lessen his heart rate, and got to the gym within a minute. Once there, he noticed someone behind the main desk. The young woman who operated the front desk seemed familiar to him. She had long dark hair hazel eyes and a thick lipped mouth.
“Randy Rodriguez, how nice it is to see you here!” the woman said. “Do you know me from somewhere?” he replied. He walked up to the desk and wiped the sweat from his forehead. “I’m Leslie Froge; Laura Froge’s sister? Well twin sister to be exact but I’m not gonna fret about technicalities.” Leslie replied. Randy felt a bit awkward around her, right from the get go. He held onto the edges of the counter and then noticed she was twirling her hair. She had also been chewing on some gum, and breathing in hard to make her chest pop out.
She had a black sports bra on as well as a pair of tight black yoga pants. “I’m a trainer and receptionist here, if you were wondering. There’s a strength and muscle toning trainer just in the back room here who can start on you as soon as you say the word.” Leslie stated. Randy nodded, rubbing his eyes a bit. “I could use some training. I’m not gonna lie, twenty four hours before now, I wouldn’t have even expected to set foot in here, but I did.” Leslie had already been withdrawing some forms and had set them in front of her.
Randy went to reach for it and saw her slide her fingers across the back of his hand. “Everyone’s gotta start somewhere honey.” A shiver ran down his spine before he went to sit down. The way Leslie was throwing herself towards him, made him shudder. The forms asked him to sign a waiver as to not sue them unless injuries were sustained due to faulty equipment. They gave a hundred percent guarantee that the equipment was inspected every week. Randy signed and dated each paper and then got up to hand them back.
“Just leave em’ on the desk sugar, I’ll have your stuff set up soon.” Leslie stated. She was in the back room, rummaging for things. Just then a very bulky man came out with skin that was as dark as dark chocolate. He had a black muscle shirt on as well as matching shorts. His hair was black and buzz cut and his ears were tiny. He had wide cheekbones, a wide jaw, slightly wide mouth and thick lips. His nose was long and slightly widened. “Hello, my name is Milo Sachet and I am gonna be your strength trainer here at Fit Athletics.” he said.
Milo’s voice was very low and naturally booming. He shook Milo’s hand and then replied. “Hello Milo, I’m Randy! It’s very nice to meet you.” “Likewise man, likewise. I hear that you are an amazing wrestler, hell I KNOW you are! I watched that match with you and Marcos against Blood and Bruiser. My god, I’ve never and I mean never seen Blood pass out like that. The way you locked that modified sharpshooter on him; ugh, it was awesome!” he said. He gave the brightest smile that Randy had ever seen.
Leslie returned from the back with a duffle bag that had the gym’s logo on the side. “In this bag is a complimentary water bottle, two fit towels, a complimentary sweat band for your head and wristbands. We will measure and weigh you before your training so we can get you a some training shorts and shirt, unless you can tell me your sizes now.” Leslie said. “I’ve got a twenty seven inch waist, and a large shirt will fit me snuggly.” Randy replied. “Right, be right back.” Leslie disappeared back into the room behind the counter once again.
Randy looked back at Milo who was just gazing deeply back. “I can’t believe the famous Randy Rodriguez; The Phantom is here in our gym. I heard about your head injury and was checking your status throughout the last few days or so. I’m honestly astounded that you’re even standing!” Randy checked the clock on the wall. It was already four twenty P.M. “Don’t worry dude. We stay open until ten P.M. on the weekdays, you’re alright.” Milo told him. Randy nodded in his direction and then saw Leslie re-entering the room.
“We did in fact have a large shirt as well as shorts that will fit around your waist perfectly, and leave some room for your legs to move.” she said. She handed over the outfit and then the duffle bag. “The matter at hand now, is the fee. How will you be paying us today? Cash or credit?” Leslie asked. There was an ATM just a few feet from him, so he went to withdraw money. “Hold on a second.” A minute later, he was back with a few hundred dollars. “How much is a yearly membership?” He asked. Milo answered him this time.
“It’s about seven hundred and twenty bucks per year or sixty bucks a month.” He said. “That actually seems reasonable. Most people can afford sixty bucks a month, especially for a place like this. I’ll tell you what. Here is three hundred dollars. That should give me full access to this gym from now until March fourteenth, two thousand eleven.” Randy stated. “Right you are. Here’s your membership card.” Leslie said. She handed over a pure black card with the words: Fit Athletic Club V.I.P. Card. “That will give you full access to the gym, the workout areas, the pool and the refreshment room.” Leslie told him.
Randy stuffed the card into his wallet and then followed Milo to this oak wood door to the far left. Once they left the main lobby, Milo guided Randy into a locker room, which was the first door to the right. “Step inside please.” He stated. Randy did as he was told and entered, and was almost blown away by the craftsmanship of this room. The lockers were all jet black and set up in the main room. Down the left side wall was a long mirror and then a huge open doorway that lead to the shower room.
“Please, sit.” Milo stated. Randy nodded and sat down. Milo sat as well and looked Randy deep in the eyes. “The training you’ll be undergoing is going to be very tough and very brutal. I’ll be making you move to the point where you can’t move anymore and then push you past that. I’m going to start you off with some protein powder that helps build muscle mass as well as this smoothie guide that will help you maintain your endurance and stamina.” Milo stated. He got up and unlocked a door that lead to an area in the back.
It wasn’t that big; it was slightly bigger than a janitor’s closet. All around the walls were containers upon containers of various protein powders. “Seeing as though you appear pretty fit already, I’ll give you the maximum protein formula.” Milo said. He picked up a huge container with a black lid on it and handed it back to Randy. “Take this powder and mix it with milk. The powder has a cocoa base so it will turn the milk chocolate. Trust me, it tastes amazing and helps build that muscle mass fast.” “Thanks man.” Randy replied.
They exited the room and then stood by the lockers. “I’ll let you get changed and then we can begin your training. Here’s a free pint of milk. Add it to your container there and two scoops of the formula. When some of it’s down, come to me out in the hallway and we’ll get you weighed in and your measurements one hundred percent straight.” “Will do.” Milo nodded and left the room. Randy felt excited and a bit scared at the same time. He stripped off his clothes and slid on the shorts and shirt. He then prepared the protein shake and drank half of it down. With his mind focused and will determined, Randy exited the locker room.