The lock came off easily enough, but then again so was remembering the combination. She hesitated, expecting an avalanche of clothes and hair products when she opened the door. When the spill never came, part of her was let down. Unzipping her duffel bag, Batti slowly emptied the locker. She had decorated the inside of the door with Lisa Frank stickers and photos of herself with loved ones. Near the top center was her and Tyrone Blades at a bar, his arm around her and both of them clutching steins of beer. They were smiling their flirty, inebriated smiles behind a froth of amber. Another picture, further down close to the bottom edge of the locker door, was an older image that meant as much if not more than her night out with her boyfriend. Batti folded up her old skirt and placed it in her bag. She eyed the photograph again, her eyebrows furrowed. She was roughly nine years old when she had her name changed. The judge was kind enough to snap the happy family's big moment. Without thinking, she lifted the likeness from the sticky tack that kept it in place. Batti turned it over and read what her adopted mother left. 私はあなたのことをいつまでも愛します She could feel the tears, but she fought against it. There was something else she could have done, wasn't there? That was the hell of it. She laughed and wondered what impact could she have possibly made if it was her arm that was raised. Was there more to be had in this wrestling federation? Batti shrugged and threw her tie into the bag. With her belongings in tow, Batti slung the duffel bag over her shoulder with a strength that surprised her. The last article of clothing, a ball cap, was on the top shelf. She brushed her blonde hair back with her fingers and put it on. Content, she closed the locker door and turned to leave. There were Kingom Come IX betting odds on a whiteboard close to the exit. Batti stared at her match. She was pegged to win, but barely. Along the silver bar below the names were green, red, and black markers. Batti giggled, thinking about the silly, childish thing she could do. Who cares anyways? She thought it over and grabbed the red marker, uncapped it, applied it directly to her mouth, and pressed her lips against the white board. A faded kiss stood as signature behind "Batti vs. King Mussél: I Quit Match". She grinned, recapping the marker and placing it back in its tray. There. A kiss for an adversary. Now her career had symmetry. As she walked passed the doorway and into the hall, she ran into another blonde. Whether Callie Clark waited for her to come out of the locker room or if it was all circumstance, Batti wasn't sure. Her old rival met her gaze; she shifted the Elite Openweight Championship uncomfortably on her shoulder. Before Callie could say anything, Batti hugged her. It was only for a brief moment - she could feel the champion stiffen at being touched. But the damage was done. Callie couldn't speak. Batti couldn't either. The oddball gave her once close friend a quick wink and headed for the lobby. The front entrance was crowded, but in her mind that's for the best. A few cameramen were capturing a promo from someone she couldn't make it with her line of visibility. Such is the pratfall of being short. But curiosity got the better of her and she had to see one last bit of pro wrestling before she made her exit. Batti walked up to the techs and watched him talk about Grindhouse or whoever. She could barely hear him from all the noise. Why they decided to record here was beyond her understanding. When it looked like he had finished, she waited until Ramparte caught sight of her. When their eyes met, silence. To be so long-winded, he really has nothing to say to me now, she thought. He only stood there, half-crossed, half-frozen in what she could only guess was fear. But fear for her? It didn't seem right. Ramparte nodded to her, a faint nod that said "You did what you set out to do since Day 1." She wasn't sure if it was out of respect, but still she raised a cautious hand up and gave a slight wave. He returned the gesture. She turned and headed for the exit. As she went for the door, a man with a prominent beard and cowboy hat was on his way in. He held it open, politely tipping his hat to her like she was a lady from the 1800s. Batti stiffled a laugh. She thanked the man and stepped out into the August air.