Your boots clicked against the tiled floor as you walked along the corridor of the Quicken Loans Arena. Your head was bent a bit; despite the new championship gold around your waist, a sense of sadness and disappointment filtered through your system. You’d just watched one of your closest friends and a respected colleague get his newly won title snatched right out of his hands by the company COO. All you could think, as you watched Orton RKO Bryan during the title struggle, is: ‘Is that going to happen to me?’
Triple H and the McMahons made no secret of their disdain for you. Each insult to your wrestling ability and your physical appearance came thinly veiled, and you saw right through it. You were good, but you just weren’t the Diva they were looking for to represent the division, Mr. McMahon said. Your body type wasn’t ‘ideal’, as Stephanie McMahon put it. You weren’t ‘the face of the division’, in Triple H’s words.
Their criticisms were bittersweet—you were human, so of course they hurt, but they also served as fuel to the fire. You came into the ring each night and fought. You dealt with the handicap matches; the gauntlet matches; and even the special referee match where AJ Lee used her Black Widow on you after the match was over. You licked your wounds after each bout and bided your time. The McMahons gave in, eventually, and stuck you in a fatal four way at Night of Champions. It was you versus Natalya versus Naomi versus AJ Lee, the champion. None of the McMahons figured you would win. No one in the Universe anticipated you being the first diva to counter out of AJ’s Black Widow. Yet you did—yet you were.
Butterflies occupied your abdomen the moment your music hit. You had to grace the Cincinnati crowd as the newest Divas champion. Each fan stood on their feet, giving you a heartwarming ovation. The sadness and disappointment soon melted into elation. This is what mattered, you thought. The warped opinions of McMahon and Triple H fell like water down the drain; it meant nothing in comparison to the overwhelming reception coming from the WWE Universe.
You got down to the ring, taking the time to slap a few hands on each side of the arena. You were waiting on an opponent when, all of a sudden, familiar phonetic alphabet started up and The Shield’s entrance music pounded through the speakers. Your head snapped up toward the stairs on the left side of the arena, knowing that it wouldn’t be long before the Hounds of Justice made their presences felt. The moment you saw Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins making a beeline toward the ring, a hot rush of nerves spiraled through your body. You had never a reason for a confrontation with these men; you supposed you’d never caused an injustice they needed to correct. It didn’t take you too long to figure out the source of their apparent ire. You looked down at the title wrapped around your waist and then up into the cool blue eyes of Dean Ambrose. They’d hopped the barricade and were surrounding the ring like hungry wolves; like you were a lamb chop ready to be devoured. Your legs shook, until you noticed a microphone in their hands.
“Last night, one of the worst injustices in the world took place…” Dean started, glaring down at your title and then up at you. “…and I think you know what it is, (Y/N).”
You directed your attention to Seth, now, who was almost chomping at the bit. “As much as we’d like to fix it ourselves, we’re going to give you an opportunity to correct the wrongs you committed” he smirked at you in a way that suggested he’d like to do a bit of bodily harm.
“In the name of justice…” Roman started, glaring right through you as if you were paper thin. You tried not to show your fear of the big man. He continued, “…You’re going to hand over that title.”
The fans booed in response to the notion of forfeiting the title. They were so loud you could barely hear what Dean had to say. “Come on, (Y/N), let’s make this easy. Hand it over… you know you don’t deserve the championship,” he said, smirking at you.