There is a palpable tension at Mousillon Memorial Stadium as the M.M.L. enters into Week 4. Following a disappointing tie versus The New Orcland Grunts in Week 3, this week’s match-up against The Champions of Valhalla, with a surprisingly 2-1 record, has already taken a “do or die” mentality among the Morningstar players and staff. None more so than with the enigmatic Morningstar owner, Archibald Drumph (cue the ominous music).
Drumph: “That Grunts’ game was a travesty that I will not see repeated this season. I’m drawing a “line in the sand” against the entire MML The stink of corruption, from the teams to the league Commissioner, is so pungent that not all the “Dignity Soap” (#DignityHasNone) could wash away the stench.”
I had arrived early at the Morningstar morning practice hoping for some unobstructed access to the players and staff. But no Morningstar player or coach would even acknowledge my presence, let alone answer any questions. The Morningstar players did sport black arm bands, one would guess for their fallen team mate, Nobody Likes You Pedro, who perished in battle against The Grunts last week.
Just as Morningstar security was escorting me away from the suddenly “closed” practice, news of the “Valhalla Message” hit the CabalVision feed. It was the first team-conjured video spell targeting an opposing team in the MML I quickly watched it on my portable crystal ball as security left me waiting for Mr. Drumph in his enormous office. Waiting for him afterwards felt like an eternity.
Drumph: “So sorry to keep you waiting, My Dear. Running a business empire can be SO time consuming. Busy, busy, busy! At least you were fortunate enough to spend some time in my luxurious inner sanctum. Did you see my imported tapestries? Nothing in all the Olde World can compare…”
April: “Mr. Drumph, have you seen this morning’s CabalVision newscast? I really think you’ll find it fascinating viewing before we get our interview started today.” (*giggle giggle*).
D: “If you insist my Darling. Anything for such a beautiful woman.” (*wink*)
At this point, Drumph shouts some commands and four servants roll in the largest Scrying Orb I have ever seen. Drumph watches the “Valhalla Message” in its entirety in silence. He shows little emotion except the smarmy grin he entered the room with turns to a formidable scowl by the end of the broadcast. Then, Count Drumph explodes.
D: “This is what the MML has been reduced to; Slanderous lies trying to invoke…what…Rebellion? …Who is this Shadow-person anyway? What’s even the point?” Drumph Spat as he raged!
A: “Well, Shadow is the Player/Head Coach of your opponent this week, The Champions of Valhalla. And his point is that he thinks that your use of the Team Apothecary (or lack thereof) on peasants reflects your contempt for the lowest caste on the Morningstars.”
D: “Listen, Honey. You think I don’t know who we’re playing this week? You think that I care what some mankini-wearing, Challenge-League whoever says about how I’m supposed to run MY TEAM? I mean, wear some pants you stinking barbarians!””
A: “Actually, your Worshipfulness, I do think you care what everybody thinks about you and your organization. But what I want to know is what do you think your players and fans feel about that spell-cast? Will they continue to support you and the Morningstars?”
D: “Baby, you see my clothes and stadium? I’m an important (eg. rich) and loved (eg. feared) man among the Bretonnian people! The peasant players know exactly what they signed up for by joining my team. I even let them have the team tradition of naming themselves after “respected” MML coaches. They seem to like it. Why? I don’t know?( and I don’t really care?) It keeps them happy (and distracted) from their humble ( and miserable) lot in life. ”
A: “So you’re saying that the peasants are less important than the higher castes on your team?”
D: “Sweet-ums, I think you just answered your own question.”
A: “Mr Drumph, would it be possible for me to ask your players directly how they feel about you and that policy?”
D: “Boo-Boo Child, all my players sign a lengthy non-disclosure agreement, in perpetude of any communication with any member of the press, or other person…or persons…or beastmen… and dwarves… Ratmen (eww)…etcetera, etcetera… down the evolutionary ladder to low elves (#DignityHasNone)… and below that (I guess Norse, this week)…in perpetuatuity (Is that a word?)… in regards to Morningstar business…So…No. In fact, April, you have been very unfair with me today, so I don’t think we’re going to talk anymore.” (Mwah-Mwah)
A: “Actually, Mr. Drumph, your contract to compete in the MML states that you MUST allow press access… at least to yourself as “Official team spokesman”…specifically to the highest-rated reporter… which is me. So, I’ll be visiting you again this week to follow up before the big game on Sunday.”
D: *Mutter, Mutter. Grumble, Grumble*
Mousillon hosts The Champions of Valhalla this Sunday at 1 P.M. (EST).
#Making Bretonnia Great Again