The Fighting Finnegan's Ch. 02bydavidpaul©
This is a work of fiction. Please note that the story is based in Australia and is written in Queen's English therefore my American audience will notice subtle differences in wording or phrases. This is the story of a family deeply involved in the world of boxing and how decisions can change the course of many lives.
Copyright© 2009 by David Paul
Peter Johns was delighted with his number one man Billy Finnegan. Ernie Johnson now had the trainer he wanted and even better Jack Finnegan would be coming onboard in a matter of days.
"Billy you've done some fantastic work. Many people would say this was a given because Gary is your father but not me. It was all the harder because he was your Father and the situation with Jack didn't help."
"Well Peter IMG is in the big leagues of boxing now. We have Ernie and Dad with Jack soon to follow."
Both men laughed and toasted their success each with a tumbler of scotch.
Gary Finnegan tried Jack's phone again without success. Why had Jack turned off his phone? Gary hoped he had done the right thing and felt he had. This opportunity meant good things for Jack.
A competitive Middleweight in Ernie and reconciliation with Billy. Gary Finnegan decided to head over and see Matt and tell him the good news.
Jack anxiously waited for the arrival of Cathy. He really didn't feel like seeing Cathy in the flesh but the news sounded ominous. She had broken his heart and then shattered it when she started dating Billy. He thought he was starting to get over her and now this.
Bidgee heard her first as the dog started barking at the approaching vehicle. Sure enough it was Cathy's red Toyota heading down the driveway. Jack braced himself for the confrontation.
Cathy exited her car and Bidgee came bounding up to her. She sure missed Bidgee but Jack even more. Cathy was nervous but steeled herself for the inevitable talk.
"How are you?"
"Look Cathy let's cut the bullshit and small talk. What do you have to say?"
"Well can I at least come in?"
"Sure follow me."
Jack led Cathy into the cabin and offered her a drink. She accepted a beer, Jack stuck with water.
"Jack I'm sorry to barge in on you like this but something has happened today."
"Ok what happened?"
"Billy signed Ernie Johnson to IMG."
"Well good for Billy, Ernie is a great fighter."
"There's more...much more. Ernie has requested your father to be his trainer and Gary has agreed."
"Ok... I guess I can live with that as long as Dad can juggle the both of us fairly."
"Jack you don't understand. Billy dazzled your father and he signed a contract with IMG today."
"Oh Shit......I can't believe it. Why the hell didn't Dad call me?"
"Jack...he tried as did I. Have you checked your phone?"
"No I haven't. I had a meeting today and switched it off."
"On a Sunday?"
"Yeah it was a last minute thing."
"Cathy I need to call Dad. Can you excuse me for a minute?"
Gary arrived at Matt and Vera's and was hoping his old friend would be happy with his decision. He knocked on the large oak door and it was promptly answered.
"Gary. How are you old buddy?"
"Good Matt, How's Vera."
"Yeah she's good Gary actually she is visiting her mother at the nursing home. So I'm glad for the company. Come on in"
Matt grabbed a couple of beers for both of them and they sat down on the couch.
"So Gary great fight on Friday. The boy is getting better and better. He'll go to the top with your guidance. I'm just glad Firepower Sports' will be along for the ride."
"Well Matt I've got even better news that will be great for all of us."
"Really what is it?"
"Guess who the new Trainer is for Ernie Johnson."
"Gary not you?"
"Yes me my friend."
"Holy shit well done, how has Jack taken the news?"
"Well mate I haven't been able to get hold of him but he'll adapt. It's great for Jack as he will now be sparring with a boxer on the same level as him."
"I see but will you be able to handle the two competing egos?"
"It'll take time but it will work. I just can't believe I have the 2 best middleweights in the country. Both are world class."
"Gary how did this all happen?"
"Bloody Billy lined it up via IMG."
"Ok....What's the catch?"
"Well I had to sign with IMG."
"Shit that can't be good for Jack! You know how he feels about IMG."
"Look Matt it's all good I can still train Jack and he can remain independent. Billy knows it's up to Jack if he goes with IMG or manages himself. It's a win win situation for everyone. Hopefully my boys will get their act together and start speaking to each other again."
"Gary you need to get hold of Jack now."
"Trust me just call him before its too late."
"Too late for what?"
"Just call him."
Jack tried the home phone but only got the answering machine. Jack then tried Gary's mobile but it was engaged. He had just put the phone down when it rang.
"Dad...I just tried calling you."
"Son I've got some news."
"I know Dad I heard about Ernie."
"Yes but please tell me you didn't sign with IMG."
"Well yes I did Son but its ok I have assurances that I can still train you as an independent fighter. You don't have to join IMG. Won't it be great having Ernie to spar and train with?"
"Dad...we are screwed!"
"What do you mean?"
"I signed with Rankin Management today."
"WHAT! Why the hell would you do that?"
"It was for us Dad. How did I know you would sign with Billy? I just wanted to get IMG off our backs and Scott is the most honest agent in Australia"
"Oh Christ what are we going to do?"
"Dad...knowing Billy there's probably not much we can do."
"Look son I'll call Billy and get back to you."
Jack knew it was over. The boxing would continue but without his father by his side.
Billy was a snake and hell would freeze over before he would let his Dad out of the contract. Jack could possibly get out of his contract but he didn't want to go with IMG. Plus IMG would hound him if he remained independent. For the first time ever Jack felt truly alone.
"How did it go with your Dad?" Cathy asked
"The Fighting Finnegan's."
"What do you mean?"
"I signed with Rankin Management today. Dad is with IMG. Our partnership is over."
"Oh God. I'm so sorry."
"You better be going back to toast your success with Billy."
"You know what Jack...FUCK YOU. I came here to help, all you Finnegan's can go to hell!"
With that Cathy stormed out of the cabin and jumped in to her car. She roared off and was soon gone. What the hell was wrong with that woman? She had Billy, had Billy's money, and had Billy's love. What did she want from him? Whatever it was it was too little too late.
"Come on Bidgee let's go for a swim" Jack said to his faithful dog.
Gary made a call to Billy. What had happened? What did they say 'the way to hell is paved with good intentions'? Billy answered after a few rings.
"Dad speak of the devil. I'm sitting here with Peter toasting our good fortune."
"Son...there is a problem."
"What's the problem Dad? Let team IMG fix it for you."
"Don't tell me he's upset about Ernie."
"No son it's about his training."
"Dad...I told you, you can continue to train him as an independent fighter."
"Son...Jack just signed with Rankin Management."
"It's a done deal son."
"Well tell him to undo it! Fucking Scott Rankin that dirty bastard!"
"What happens if he remains with Rankin?"
"Dad...you are part of IMG. Rankin Management is our rival and you can't train Jack as now he isn't an independent."
"Jesus how did it come to this? What about my contract?"
"Dad...its iron clad. You walk and there are major ramifications. Court action for one."
"It's over isn't it Billy."
"No Dad. Not if Jack can get out of his contract with Rankin."
"Son...I've gotta go. I'll speak to you in a few days when we meet with Ernie."
Gary knew it was all over. Jack would not sign for IMG even if his life depended on it. God dammit! The Finnegan's had really dug a hole for themselves this time.
Jack's phone started ringing just as he got back from his swim. He figured it must be his Dad.
"You son of a bitch!"
"Billy...What do you want?"
"You signed with Scott Fucking Rankin! You traitorous dog. Get out of the contract and do it now."
"Go to hell Billy. I'm with Rankin Management now. "
"Yeah well Dad's with IMG. See you on the other side of the ring."
The phone went dead. Well that was what Jack had expected. Maybe it was for the best. It would have been difficult for his Dad juggling 2 fighters in the same division. What's done was done. Jack just had to move on.
Jack placed a quick call to Scott and informed him of the situation.
"Thanks Jack but I received a call from your Brother. I won't go into specifics but he made his feelings clear. Look Jack if you want out of this contract because of your Dad, no hard feelings and consider it torn up."
"No thanks Scott. I'm sticking with Rankin Management. I'll need your help in finding a trainer and a place to stay. It wouldn't be appropriate to stay with Dad anymore as knowing Dad; he'll get Ernie to move in so he can monitor his diet."
"Look...leave it with me. I have to go away but Eve is making you top priority. We'll call you tomorrow."
Billy was furious! His best laid plans had evaporated. He felt good giving hell to Rankin over the phone. What a smug bastard. At least he had Ernie and his Dad. Jack was in for one hell of a surprise in the Middleweight division with Ernie Johnson entering the fray.
Arriving home the apartment was dark. Where the hell was Cathy? He needed some release. Billy had to smile to himself, how this must piss off Jack with him having Cathy. Wait till he married her then the fireworks would really begin.
Billy made himself another drink then another until he passed out on the couch. Billy awoke to the sound of movement and a clicking noise. He stumbled from the couch and made his way to the master bedroom. Cathy was busily packing her suitcases.
"What are you doing?"
"I can see you are packing but why?"
"I'm leaving you Billy. I'm going to stay with my Mother."
"Look Billy we helped each other out at a difficult time. We had some good times but it was never really going to work out."
"I love you Cathy."
"Well I'm sorry Billy but I don't love you and quite frankly I don't even like you anymore."
"What the fuck do you mean by that?"
"You've become a power driven asshole, only interested in success and destroying everyone in your way...even your own family."
"You bitch! You loved spending my money."
"Yes and for that I'm sorry I used you Billy. I gave my heart away a long time ago."
"Well you are nothing more than a whore."
"Yes I guess I am."
"Well you aren't leaving slut."
With that Billy grabbed Cathy's bags and placed them back on the floor.
"I'm going Billy, with or without the suitcases."
Billy had reached his breaking point. Screwed over by his brother and now his lover. He let out a roar and gave Cathy a mighty backhander to her cheek. Cathy collapsed to the floor in shock.
Billy hauled her up and dragged her to the bed. He tore off her dress and undergarments then proceeded to rape her.
Once it was finished she quickly picked up her clothes and changed. Without interference this time she grabbed her suitcases and left. Cathy was done with the Finnegan's...they could all rot in hell.
Money and power can change the outcome of most any given situation. Billy had been drinking fairly heavily since the fight with Cathy. Being drunk made the most irrational ideas seem like perfectly good ideas. Billy jumped in his car and decided to win back Cathy.
Hell, he was the best negotiator at IMG; he could sell ice to Eskimos. Cathy would be a pushover. The first mistake was trying to drive drunk, weaving along the road at excessive speed will warrant attention.
Billy got that attention in the form of a police vehicle. His second mistake was fighting with the police and verbally berating them. The third and final mistake was refusing a breathalyser test. Billy was locked up charged with drink driving and assaulting a police officer.
It didn't make the news. Peter Johns knew the right people in the right places and Billy walked with nothing more than a slap on the wrist. Money, power and corruption sit well together.
Jack had an easy drive back to the city. He needed to talk with his Dad and then find a place to rent. He knew the Rankin's were helping but it never hurt to try yourself. Gary wasn't home. There was a note saying that he was out at a meeting and they would talk later.
Jack decided to go for a long run. The run felt great and Jack knew he should continue training even though everything was in limbo. Just some running and swimming for a week or so to start off.
Jack was just passing the Reilly's house nearing home when he saw Cathy sitting on the steps. He wanted to ignore her but unfortunately, Bidgee wouldn't. Cathy got a scare as she had been in deep thought when suddenly a tongue was licking her face.
"Bidgee! Calm down girl."
Cathy looked up and saw Jack with a small smile on his face. Dammit she still loved Jack Finnegan but she had betrayed him and nothing would put things right. She started tearing up but used all her willpower to stop them.
"Bidgee leave Cathy alone."
"It's ok Jack I don't mind."
"Cathy look I just wanted to apologise about my comment yesterday. It was mean spirited but I was in shock."
"Well you Finnegan's can sure be mean spirited."
"Ok...Let's go Bidgee."
"Wait ...Jack I'm sorry. It's been a rough few days."
"Ok Cath, what's wrong?"
"Are you just visiting your mum?"
"Sort of...I'm living here again."
"I left Billy and I'm home. Now that's all that needs to be said. Look Jack I've got to go."
"Hey Cathy wait just a minute...what happened to your face?"
"Nothing Jack I ran into a door. I've gotta go. Bye Bidgee."
Interesting Jack thought to himself as he made his way home. Billy must have really screwed up to lose Cathy. However, it was none of his business but he had to admit the bruise looked like it had come from a hand and not a door. Billy didn't hit woman though, that was one thing Jack was sure of.
Gary had a very productive meeting with IMG. Ernie had attended and Gary had laid out a training plan along with a list of possible fights for his debut in a couple of months. Gary had inquired on whether Ernie would like to live with Gary and Jack. Ernie jumped at the chance and would move in next week. Harry's Gym was being outfitted with new equipment and would be closed for a couple of days. Gary headed off home to speak with Jack.
Jack was watching a movie on TV when he heard Gary's car pull in. Well here we go thought Jack. Gary came through the front door and found Jack at the dining room table
"Hey Dad. How was the meeting?"
"Good Son. Ernie looks like he will be a good worker. We start training next week."
"I'm happy for you Dad."
"Dad before you say anything let me say something. I love you Pop and believe me I don't hold any grudges about how things have panned out. It was bound to happen one day, you've made me the boxer I am but it's time to move forward. You always taught me a contract is a contract and it should be honoured."
"Son I'm so relieved. If I had my time over again.......but I won't unfortunately."
"Dad I just want to let you know that I'll be moving out soon."
"It'll just be easier. I need to make my own decisions now."
"Ok Son I understand. Ernie is moving in next week. I think he'll be disappointed you aren't around but he'll survive."
I hope I will survive Gary thought to himself.
"Let's fire up the barbeque and cook a couple of steaks. What do you reckon Dad?"
"Sounds like a plan Son."
Scott had wrapped up everything up in a couple of days. Bloody thug footballers he thought to himself. One of his clients had gotten himself into trouble and had been accused of assaulting a prominent Member of Parliament's son. The initial security video footage from the nightclub didn't bode well for the football player.
However, one of the patrons of the nightclub had videotaped the fight close up and it showed that the other person had thrown a drink onto the football player and had racially slurred him. All assault claims were dropped with that evidence.
The footballer was lucky but it would be an interesting time for the Member of Parliament who was the acting Indigenous Affairs Minister. He would have to explain his son's actions. Thank God for mobile phone cameras Scott thought.
As Scott was lined up at the Airport, trying to arrange a flight home his phone rang.
"Hello Scott Rankin."
"Scott it's me."
"Eve how are you baby?"
"Scott you won't believe this.........David Angelo just called."
"The David Angelo"
"Yes he saw the press statement on Jack and wants to talk to you."
"Look I'm getting a flight back now to Mayson. Can you call ahead and arrange a convenient time to talk to David."
"Will do Scotty. Love you."
"Love you too babe."
Scott made it to the check in counter and was in luck as a plane to Mayson was leaving in 45 minutes. Scott got his seat assignment, boarding pass and checked his luggage in. He had about 20 minutes to kill. Scott grabbed the local paper and sports magazines and by the time, he got to the gate the plane was boarding.
Scott found his seat and sat back thankfully there was no one assigned next to him. Scott started to think about David Angelo. It could only be good news for Jack. Scott was smart enough however not to assume anything. He started making a few notes on David Angelo from his own limited knowledge.
David Angelo was a very well known American boxing trainer. David had been a very skilled Amateur Boxer who had to retire early due to a bad back injury caused in a motor vehicle accident. David did his initial tutelage under Hall of Fame trainer Liam Derry. David then broke away and worked out of the famous Camden Gym near Florida.
David had produced over 20 champions in his time with the only trainer more successful to Scott's knowledge was Emanuel Stewart. David Angelo would be around 58 years old but the strangest thing was that he had quit training boxers over 3 years ago. This was going to be an interesting conversation.
Billy was putting together the final touches on his proposal to Peter Johns about the recommendations for Ernie Johnson's debut fight. He liked the look of Jason Driscoll who looked tailor made for Ernie. Driscoll was a journeyman boxer and fought indiscriminately. Most of the time he worked as a builder's labourer. Ernie would once and for all end this guy's pitiful career.
Scott walked in the door around 4pm and as he entered, he got a big hug from Eve.
"How did it go Scott?"
"Yeah I got our client off but I think this won't be the last time. He really is a Neanderthal. More importantly did you get to speak with David Angelo?"
"Baby please don't torture me."
"Of course I did Scotty you can ring him 6pm our time."
"Ok... want to mess around for a couple of hours then?"