Williard was alone with the colonel when he wondered
what Kurtz’s family would think if they knew how far gone
he was. Williard said Kurtz broke from them then broke away
from himself. Willard had never seen a man so broken up
and ripped apart. Jey Uso broke away too, from
the Bloodline, his family, at Royal Rumble ’23.
All Chef wanted was to be in New Orleans with his family
and make his sauces. At least he died a soldier’s death
and did not see how home wasn’t what it had been.
What is Jey Uso but a saucier, a master of obscure art,
a homebody happy to never leave his podium? What horror,
what happened to Roman Reigns, big cousin, the Head
of the Table. What grief, what loss to see a preacher disgraced,
suddenly without answers, Mom drunk and unjustified.
No one understood what Jey was feeling except his twin
brother. Jimmy knew just how hard it is to be a sheep
when everything inside you is telling you you’re a lion,
but what would they think—Umaga, Yokozuna,
everyone—if they knew, if they were here?
Drew Buxton is a social worker from Texas. His short story collection will be released this year by With An X Books. His work has been featured or is forthcoming in Joyland, The Drift, Electric Literature, Ninth Letter, and Vice among other publications. Find him at drewbuxton.com.