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Ring Around The Rosie

[Many Years Ago.]

[He wasn’t always a bad man.]

[There was a time when I remember him sitting up in my bed with me, my head on his chest, stroking my hair.]

“Ring-a-ring-a-rosies, a pocket full of posies. A tissue, a tissue, we all fall down.”

[It was soothing.]

[I felt love.]

“The King has sent his daughter to fetch a pale of water. A tissue, a tissue, we all fall down.”

[I remember looking up at him with love in my eyes.]

“Pa…” [I’d ask.] “What’s the ring-a-ring-a-rosies song about?”

“Well son, it’s about a plague. Once upon a time in the Slums, a plague of sickness broke out and they wrote this song about it.”

“Could Doctors not help them, pa?”

[He sighed.]

“Not all Doctors are in the profession to help their patients, son. Sometimes they’re in it for other reasons.”

[The Present.]

[Sat in my old bed, at mom’s house.]

[My room almost a shrine to my existence.]

“An apple a day keeps the Doctor away.”

“I’d eat a whole tree full if it meant keeping me away from you, Dr. Death.”

“Back when the Slums had the Plague, Doctor’s like you were brought in to help treat the poor. They believed that the human body had four humours – blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile.”

“They would try to remove the toxic imbalance from the body by bloodletting their patients.”

Bleeding them dry.

“In the modern world, that’s exactly what you do, isn’t it? You bleed your patients dry. Only you’re not there with a needle, but a creditbook instead.”

[There’s no humour in that.]

[There’s no integrity, either.]

“What your patients don’t realize is that the toxic imbalance in their life isn’t in one of four humours, but you – the Doctor. El Mariachi Muerte has come to realize that the toxic imbalance is you, Dr. Death. Nurse Frightengale too.”

“And despite your wild theories on regenerative health, the only thing getting healthier is the balance of your credits.”

“Just like the Doctors of old, who’d have their patients drinking their own urine or baked in an oven, you’re a charlatan. You profit from the misery of others and to call yourself a Doctor is like Doom calling himself a good friend.”

[The song echoes in my head.]

 “Ring-a-ring-a-rosies, a pocket full of posies. A tissue, a tissue, we all fall down.”

“I’m not sick, Doctor.”

“I’m not in need of treatment.”

“I don’t need or want your help.”

“The rest of Old School Wrestling may succumb to Dr. Death and his wildly inaccurate methods of treatment, but I won’t be one of them. I won’t fall down, not next week. You see, Death’s Lament is an apt name, Doctor.”

“Because once we’ve finished with our match, you’ll be the one lamenting ever stepping into the ring with Felix Foley.”

“Only one of us around here does any good.”

“And that’s me.”

For the children.”


Felix Foley