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 Before The Fall (Pt.3), Role Reversal
 Posted: Aug 30 2017, 11:08 AM

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It’s Wednesday, and our favourite pair of Socialites are approaching the halfway point of their intensive training regimen, in preparation for the IYH Tag Team Championship Gauntlet Match at The Fall this Sunday night. The days have been harsh, the nights have largely been sleepless, but Kelsey and Rebecca have, thus far, managed to persevere.

But today, they face their biggest challenge yet… Pretending to be each other?!

It’s a cold winter’s morning, as you’d come to expect inside a steel shed at 8am. Rugged up on the couch in a doona (large quilt) is a shivering Rebecca-- Erm, that is “Kelsey” Saint, who is nursing a bowl of Froot Loops and watching cartoons. She has been parked on the couch since 5, committing to the role as best she can.

The actual Kelsey - “Rebecca” Spencer - drags herself out of bed, trudging through the living area as she makes her way to the small bench in the corner.

“Good morning!” Rebecca enthusiastically calls out. “How are you feeling today?”

There’s no response. Kelsey fills the kettle halfway, placing it on its stand before flipping the switch.

“Kelsey? Did you hear me?”

Kelsey folds her arms, staring at her bare feet.

“Kelsey? Kelsey? Helloooo?”

“Oh, for crying out loud!” Kelsey angrily shouts, smacking her open palm on the bench. “If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a dozen times! Don’t talk to me before I have my coffee!”

“Gosh… You’re sounding a bit cranky, Kelsey…” Rebecca sinks back into the couch. “Why don’t you come watch some anime with me?”

“I’m busy.”

Rebecca looks between Kelsey and the television. “But… It’s One-Punch Man!” she declares, in the whiniest voice she can produce.

“I’ll show you one punch in a minute,” Kelsey threatens as she finishes preparing the black coffee. She takes a sip, and recoils with disgust. “You should know I don’t…” she pauses to splutter, struggling with the taste - or perhaps trying to force the words out of her mouth. “...I don’t like watching anime.”

“I’m sorry, I know you don’t,” Rebecca snidely answers, turning to face the television. “Do you think we can start training soon?”

“In a minute,” Kelsey responds, having to fight every basic instinct she has to decline the invite to train. “I just need to finish my coffee first.”

Even though she is able to commit to the bit quite well, Rebecca is really struggling to keep her mood in check. For the longest time she has woken up to a piping hot cup every morning, so skipping out on it this morning has been difficult, akin to a smoker quitting cold turkey or a chubby man abstaining from cheeseburgers.

Once Kelsey has choked down her coffee, the two climb into the ring to figure out how to wrestle each other’s styles - Kelsey has to quickly learn how to put her technical knowledge in the back of her mind, and rely solely on strikes to deal damage. And Rebecca must adapt to neutralising Kelsey’s strikes, wrestle a more defensive style.

“Those shots are good, keep it up!” Rebecca praises, as she deflects stinging closed-fist punches with her forearms. When Kelsey rears back for a haymaker, Rebecca sees her chance… She quickly goes behind and locks her arms around her opponent’s waist. Kelsey’s instinctive reaction is to sweep the legs, but instead, she elbows Rebecca in the side of the head to escape the hold.

Rebecca groggily staggers back, holding her forehead as Kelsey spins around, taking on a Muay Thai fighting stance.

“What’s that stance? You’ve had some training?”

“I learned a thing or two in Ukraine a couple of years back,” Kelsey reveals, jogging on the spot to stay limber. “I went back for a refresher course not long ago.”

“Impressive,” Rebecca praises with a snicker. “Too bad for you the guy who raised me was a Graeco-Roman wrestling expert.” Rebecca gets into a starting position, Kelsey believing it all to be a bluff.

It isn’t.

Rebecca takes Kelsey down with a very impressive Saito suplex, one that you wouldn’t expect to come from a wrestler primarily known as a striker.

“You’re really good,” an exhausted Kelsey compliments Rebecca, before remembering she’s supposed to be playing a role. “I mean… Is that all you’ve got?”

“I bet you weren’t expecting something like this,” Rebecca taunts, trying to channel Kelsey’s cheeky, smartalec attitude. Kelsey’s stomach growls, and she can’t help but reach for it to tend to the hunger pains. “We can break for lunch, if you want. I hope you know that means I win, though.”

“I’m not hungry.”

“You sure? I bet you’re starving!

“I don’t want to eat anything, Rebecca!”

Whether it’s desperation or simply withdrawals from the lack of caffeine in her system, Rebecca decides she’s going to act passive-aggressive. “I’m sorry. I do this a lot, don’t I? I should respect that and stop pestering you to do things you don’t want to do.”

Kelsey picks up on the sarcasm, and takes offense to her mocking statement. She decides to retaliate. “Oh, don’t apologise. If I wasn’t such a cranky poo pants, I might be open to doing things you enjoy for a change.”

“It’s not your fault. I should not try and guilt you into things,” Rebecca snaps back, taking a few steps forward. “You’ve got enough to stress you out already, you don’t need me being an immature little baby when I don’t get my own way!”

“You wanted to break for lunch, right?” Kelsey questions, still maintaining a sense of hostility in her voice. She climbs out of the ring, strides to the kitchen area and rummages through the small cupboard that serves as a pantry. Rebecca hastily follows, arriving as her partner produces a jar of peanut butter. Rebecca watches Kelsey pop a pair of bread slices into the toaster, and becomes nauseated as she unscrews the cap of the jar, filling a large tablespoon with the oily paste. “I know how much you love eating peanut butter, so I’m being a thoughtful friend for once and making you some lunch. But the toast might take a while to cook, so feel free to have a spoonful while you’re waiting.”

If you hadn’t guessed by now, while Kelsey adores the greasy goo, Rebecca absolutely despises the taste. However, as someone who is playing the part of Kelsey today, she has to eat it regardless. It’s only fair - Kelsey had to down the black coffee.

Rebecca’s hand trembles as she lifts the spoon to her lips, before finally biting the bullet and popping it into her mouth. She screws her face up, the paste swirling in her mouth as she chews it, sticking to every nook and cranny it can. One hard swallow later and she’s still left with the irritating feeling of a sticky, dry tongue.

“How was it?” Kelsey asks, slightly impressed that Rebecca actually managed to ingest the paste.

“Delicious,” Rebecca lies through her teeth… As if there were any room for that beyond the sticky peanut butter. “But you’re looking a little thirsty to me.”

Kelsey watches nervously as Rebecca rummages through the bottom cupboard with determination. “We have plenty of water,” she anxiously reminds her.

“Oh, no, this is a different kind of thirst… I know it is.”

Kelsey’s eyes widen, seeing Rebecca has pulled out a big bottle of vintage red wine and a glass. She begins pouring the brick red liquid into the glass, and doesn’t stop until it’s close to the brim. Not a word needs to be spoken - Kelsey knows that’s going to be for her.

“You won’t be joining me..?” Kelsey asks, trying to buy any extra time she can to come up with an excuse to get out of this.

“You know me, I don’t like this stuff.” She hands the glass to Kelsey, who is certainly not eager to drink it. Nevertheless, Rebecca eggs her on. Fidgeting with her eyes and eyebrows to mock Kelsey’s Tourette’s out of spite, she forces another spoonful of peanut butter into her gullet before she continues speaking. “I know it’s a little early, but why wait? Since you are such a colossal bitch it should calm you down. Unless you don’t think you can handle it.”

Rebecca knows which buttons to push to get the highly competitive Kelsey to do what she wants. By eating more peanut butter and taunting her while doing so, she’s saying Kelsey doesn’t have the guts to drink the wine - which is going to get her to do whatever it takes to prove her wrong. Telling Kelsey Spencer she can’t do something is throwing down the gauntlet.

But Rebecca couldn’t have anticipated what happens next - Kelsey downs the full glass of wine in one gulp! It’s enough to stun Rebecca to silence as Kelsey places the now-empty wine glass on the bench, still reeling from the powerful taste. She lets out a loud belch and brings her balled fist to her mouth, trying to make sure that nothing else comes out.

“Are you alright?” Rebecca asks, with slight concern.

“Of course! I’m perfec--” Hiccup! “...tly fine!”

Defeated, Rebecca throws her arms to her sides with a deep sigh. “Look at what we’re doing,” she groans, dissatisfied with how today has turned out. Rather than helping each other learn new techniques and tactics, they’re squabbling like little children. “All we are accomplishing right now is hurt feelings. This is getting ridiculous.” She notices Kelsey teetering in her place, and maneuvers her to the nearest seat. “Are you sure you are okay?”

“I feel a little funny…” Kelsey slurs her words, wobbling back and forth as she clutches her forehead.

“You are in for a long afternoon,” her partner informs her, standing before her with arms folded. “That was a lot of wine to drink in one hit. You should forget about training right now, you need to rest before all of that hits you.”

“No, I’m fine!” Kelsey declares with defiance, jumping to her feet, eager to get back to work. Her body betrays her though, as the sudden movement shakes up what’s inside her just enough for most of it to come back up in a hailstorm of projectile vomit. Rebecca closes her eyes at the sight, waiting for the sounds of heaving to cease.

Spent, Kelsey flops down onto the couch. Rebecca stands over her, shaking her head as she looks to the pool of smelly vomit that has decorated the rug red and brown. “Do you believe me now?” When Kelsey groans and says something incomprehensible, Rebecca covers her with the quilt she’d been wearing earlier. “Rest for now. There will be plenty of time to train when you are not drunk.”

She heads off to work on her cardio, but not before glancing over her shoulder at her best friend. With a guilt-stricken expression, she feels a strong sense of remorse as she quietly whispers at the sight.

“I am sorry for putting you in this mess.”
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