My Last Day Without You
Chapter 12: Breaking News from Gawker!

by Quinn D.K.

These articles are excerpts from Gawker and Deadspin published on the following morning of February 14:


The Viking Scored Last Night (In More Ways Than One)

9:41 am, February 14

Well, uh, Happy Valentine's Day?

To recap for our readers who were marooned on a desert island or stranded on Mars yesterday: the saga of 'Hezra' came, saw, and conquered. An (accidental?) bedroom picture of Portland Knights team captain Henrik Ford cuddling up to former PopViral writer Ezra Grayson leaked on Twitter and oh, the pearls that were clutched.

What followed was an unpredictable, manic shitstorm of aggressive public behavior, corporate confrontations and frenzied paparazzi dodging that put Toronto - Ezra's hometown and the setting of this 24 hour debacle - in an utter tailspin. (That poor city. Hadn't they suffered enough under the former mayorship of Rob Ford?)

Last night at approximately 8:04 pm EST on TSN, Henrik Ford apologized to his paramour Ezra in front of the entire country (of Canada, plus us Americans who snuck a livestream link to watch). Immediately and abruptly after, Henrik dashed out of the press room and stole a paparazzi-captured smooch with Ezra on the street outside the hotel. A grand gesture worthy of the greatest romcoms.

Confused? Well, so were we. According to sources, Henrik and Ezra hadn't been on speaking terms following a brief trip to North York late yesterday. No one quite knows what the schism was about - though it wouldn't take a Harvard degree to guess that intense media scrutiny played at least some part in it. (Guilty as charged, we suppose...)

We're just gonna come out and say it: we've been rooting for these two since they came into the public eye. Henrik's speech took some serious cojones. And even if we're missing the entire picture, we're just glad they ended up together. We think. For now. And we very much look forward to that picture of Hezra making out in the street to take on a life on its own - the LGBT equivalent of the iconic sailor and nurse V-J Day kiss, maybe?

Much has been quiet from Team Hezra since their public kiss-and-makeup last night and neither party has responded to requests for interviews. May we take a guess as to what, ahem, has been keeping them occupied?

Go on with your bad selves, Hezra. This Valentine's Day is for you. You deserve it.


PopViral Stand-off Signals Growing Problems Within Online News Industry

10:17 am, February 14

Several current and former employees of online news giant PopViral have written to Gawker since yesterday's very public schism between Ezra Grayson and PopViral editor-in-chief Heather Cassidy.

Ezra's tiff (or rant, depending on how you saw it) inside PopViral's head office in Toronto leaked in full on YouTube last night and caused quite the stir. It appears that his complaints only scratch the surface of an organization that utilizes questionable journalistic practices and shoddy treatment of its interns and staff. One employee described the company's work conditions as "soul crushing" and "exploitative".

We are working to compile a full list of complaints from all sources that have contacted us. If you are currently or formerly employed by PopViral and would like to share your story, please email us ASAP. We promise full anonymity.

In related news, the 'Hezra' picture that started it all (you know the one) has disappeared from PopViral's Twitter account where it originally appeared yesterday. When reached for comment, a representative noted that deleting the tweet was an internal decision. They declined to elaborate.

PopViral has also refused to comment on the nature of this article.


Trouble for the Viking? (UPDATE: Maybe not)

10:56 am, February 14

Woo. Are you tired of all the Hezra news yet? Last one for today. We promise. Maybe.

Apparently, Henrik Ford's now infamous apology on TSN wasn't supposed to address Ezra or even reference him at all. Our sources say that a representative from Klein & Ally Partners (that's one of New York's biggest and scariest PR firms, for all you peons) had actually written out an apology for Henrik to read verbatim. That would definitely explain the little white card he tore up (several GIFs of that awesome moment are already on Tumblr, if you're curious).

So what does this act of rebellion mean for the brawny Viking? Has he been jousted from the Knights? Possibly for good?

An earlier version of this article indicated that yes, higher-ups in the league were considering harsh punishments for Henrik's little sorry-switcharoo. But we've recently spoken with the NHL about his possible penalties, and you might be surprised to hear the conclusions they came to.

"Henrik Ford is a talented athlete and a kind, generous individual who's well known within Portland for his philanthropy," said Sheila Conrad, Executive VP of Communications for the NHL. She went on to note Henrik's enthusiastic involvement with Portland's Stand for Children Leadership Program, which he's been part of for the last six years.

But what of the rumors that several sponsors threatened to pull support from the Portland Knights in light of the 'Hezra' kerfuffle?

"While it's true that a few corporate partners had expressed concern, in review of Henrik's speech on TSN and his personal track record, all sponsors will remain with the Portland Knights through the duration of the season, as per their contracts."

Speaking of hockey season, there's been an awful lot of murmuring that Joseph Taggert (the Knights' notoriously bullheaded coach) will bench Henrik for the rest of it...

"Player discipline of that nature is handled by that specific team's management, not the NHL. I cannot comment on that, no."

Hmmmm. Looks like the Viking dodged quite a few sidechecks. The Knights have yet to release an official statement regarding Henrik's availability for the remainder of hockey season, but fear not, we'll update as soon as we hear them from them.

Until then, just enjoy your god damn Valentine's Day. Alright?

End of Chapter 12
To be Continued

(One more chapter to wrap things up! Keep reading!)

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