A yellow cab lurches to a stop outside the HSBC Arena, the back door swinging open almost instantly. Ben Jackman steps out of the taxi, shoulders his bag and slams the car door closed behind him. His right hand reaches toward the driver blindly with a pair of folded up bills as his eyes scan over the arena in front of him looking for the backstage entrance.
Jackman waves off the driver’s offer to wait, and begins to walk quickly but purposefully toward a small door tucked into a corner of the arena’s outside wall.
Jackman’s hand wraps around the door handle but before he has a chance to pull the door open it explodes outward almost throwing him off balance. Someone has been pushing their way out through the door just as Jackman had been pulling the door open and that very same person runs straight into Jackman’s chest.
Cade Sydal: What the hell!? Watch where you’re going! Can’t you see The Champ is coming through?!
Jackman laughs under his breath, his eyes settling on a suddenly visibly unnerved Cade Sydal.
Cade takes a step backward, the lock of shock at unexpectedly running into Jackman quickly fading from his face and just as quickly its replaced by his patented cocky grin.
Cade Sydal: Well if it isn’t Bert Jerkman. How are your eyes?
Jackman smiles broadly, as he pushes the door open behind him and turns sideways to give Cade the opportunity to pass.
Ben Jackman: They’re fine, Cade. I think you were headed outside, right?
The nervous look returns to Cade’s face and as much as he tries he can’t quite hide his discomfort.
Cade Sydal: No. No, I wasn’t. Must have me confused with someone else.
Jackman’s eyes twinkle at Cade’s discomfort.
Ben Jackman: Didn’t you just push this door open?
Cade Sydal: What if I did?
Ben Jackman: What if you did? If you need to step outside, be my guest.
Cade looks at Jackman nervously, and shakes his head.
Cade Sydal: Nice try, Ben Jobben. But I’m pretty sure Cassi is waiting on me back in my locker room…
Cade turns and is several feet back down the hallway before the words finish leaving his mouth.
Jackman straightens the bag on his shoulder and steps through the doorway, a smile curling the ends of his lips as he watches Cade retreat up the hallway.
Ben Jackman: This is going to be fun…
The screen goes black, revealing once again the SHOOT Project Helmet, looming ominously over the skyline of Las Vegas, Nevada. "Miracle" by Nonpoint begins to play as the camera flies down onto the SHOOT Project Epicenter.
WHOOOOOOOOOA You better blow the whistle, ring the bell
The sound of a bell is heard, revealing the empty ring in the center of the SHOOT Project Epicenter Arena.
Train a little harder than you can or ever will
The opening shot is of the SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Championship belt. A second shot of Stellar Insanity is shown, standing proudly at the entrance. A third shot of Tanya Black can be seen, a smirk on her face as she winks at the camera.
You need to think fast
Cade Sydal is shown taking Ben Jackman down, before it flashes over to him holding his World Championship high. That is followed quickly by a shot of Thomas Manchester Black, pounding his fists together in the middle of an empty ring.
This is our first but I guarantee it’ll be your last!
Ichiro Seppuku, snapping an ASP down, ready to strike, Azraith DeMitri behind him. Mirage is shown lording over his fallen foe, the mask fresh off of his face.
Got news if you think you bad
The next image is Akuma Satsui screaming at the camera, blood pouring down his face. It takes the viewer a moment to realize the dark shadow of Dave Dymond is standing behind Akuma, holding his monster back while Damage Control looks on.
All your other battles make me laugh
Jonas Coleman is up next, his face a bloody crimson mask. He is screaming a primal scream at the camera, which switches quickly to Charles Brandon Magnus and Buck Dresden, holding the World Tag Team Championship belts high in the air.
You need to start runnin’…
Alex Cruz measures up Dina Bryce in the ring, circling one another before it switches to Ben Jackman, glaring at the camera.
You’re standin’ on the tracks and the train is comin’!
Frontline II TURBO celebrate a victory in the ring as the camera shifts to Isaac Entragian spearing Lennox Ferguson through barbed wire to the ground. Next we see Donovan King’s head slowly lift up, his eyes staring into the camera.
NOWHERE TO GO
Project:SCAR glare down at the ring, this time Kenji Yamada and Adrian Corazon looking at The Bad Ass Brotherhood. We quickly shift to Laura Seton holding the Sin City Championship, shouting out at the fans with a smile on her face.
You need a miracle!
The Hierarchy is shown putting the Potato Sack of Shame on Yuri’s head.
Nothing’s gonna save you
Stephen Rawlings flashes with a quick image of VAS before we see Lunatikk Crippler, grinning at the camera.
And I’ll scream it from the top of the world!
Jacob Mephisto is shown in the ring, looking over his shoulder at the fans before it switches to The Gunslingers taking Donovan King down while Azrael Goeren looks on. X-Calibur hitting the X-Terminator on Donovan King is shown.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Donovan King nailing the Dealbreaker on Azraith is shown.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
Alex Brooks locks in his submission on Kenji Yamada.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Del Carver slowly withdraws a cigar from his mouth, smoke billowing around his face.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
Crazy Boy and Cronos Diamante lock up.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Jester Smiles staring across the ring at The Real Deal.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
The arena is shown fully, the fans screaming as loudly as possible as the SHOOT Project Helmet is shown one final time.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
As Laura Seton and her sister Madison walk down the hallway they turn a corner to see Tanya Black standing there polishing her red lead pipe as she listens to her MP3 Player and sings along to it.
Tanya: I’ve got a feeling you could use a little smile,
Hoping you could stay there for just a little while
Making a lot of noise up there, throw your hands up in the air
I don’t want to waste my time on simple little things
I’d rather stay here all the night with everyone who sings
Madison: …That’s not my point. I’m saying—fantastic…
Madison sounds rather unthrilled as the sight of Tanya catches her eye.
Madison points towards Tanya and Laura turns her head to see her. She shrugs.
Laura: Tanya Black. So?
Realizing that she is no longer alone in the hall Tanya pauses her song and pops the earbuds off. Looking up she smiles sweetly though her eyes are locked only on the golden belt on Laura’s shoulder.
Tanya: Well hello there Miss Seton. Good luck on your match. I really do want you to win tonight. I’ll make sure to cheer nice and loud from backstage.
Laura gives a polite smile.
Laura: Thank you. Good luck to yourself later.
Laura and Madison continue past Tanya. As they go to pass, Tanya’s arm shoots out and stops perfectly so that the lead pipe is resting against the face plate of the belt but there is not even the slightest ding on it.
Tanya: One more thing. You aren’t allowed to get injured either. There is no point in you winning just to vacate the belt or worse. Lose it later on because you were hurt and not able to be the best possible Laura Seton. Only one hundred percent Laura is worth fighting. Anything less and I might end up being a simple bully. We can’t have that.
Laura: Whatever happens, happens. I’m not holding back just for the sake of not getting injured. If I win and, say, I rip up my knee? That’s my problem.
Laura reruns Tanya’s few words through her head.
Laura: What do you mean by simple bully?
Madison: She’s just trying to sound like a b*tch.
Laura turns towards Madison.
Tanya turns her focus and stares at Madison for a long moment. Her face a mix of confusion and intrigue. Finally she speaks after measuring the other woman.
Tanya: I’m sorry but this is a conversation between important people. The Sidekicks Longue is out back by the Outhouses.
Madison: F*ck you!
Madison has a step towards Tanya, but Laura quickly gets between the two.
Madison: Take your stupid little pipe and shove right up your *SS!
Tanya: Leash your pet ringrat Laura or she might end up in the ring with me. I don’t do the whole backstage brawl thing. It’s an insult to the art. But in the ring, on the sacred ground? I’ll hurt anyone who is in there with me. Trained Wrestler or not. Not for pleasure, not for myself. But for the higher cause. That’s why I can’t let this business between us go Laura. There is something unsettled here. It disturbs the waters. Afterwards, when we have both paid the price then we can go our seperate ways and have long successful careers here in SHOOT Project.
Tanya smiles again but this time it is the smile of a predator sizing up it’s next meal as she makes a point of not once looking at Madison, the threat too minimal as Laura seems confused.
Laura: What "business?" What "waters?"
Tanya stares in disbelief for a long moment. The anger rises as her whole body tenses, self-control fading away as thoughts swirl in her head and clash demanding action. Finally Tanya calms down and laughs, a great joke having spread throughout her body.
Tanya: That’s right. Miss Seton is beyond bad behavior isn’t she? She lives in the land of Make-Believe where there are no consequences for her actions and no one is allowed to think bad of her. If they do they are automatically wrong.
Laura: Noooo—people have free will. If there’s a few out there, so be it. I just don’t think you’re making sense right now.
Tanya: Or is it that you aren’t really a wrestler and so have no damn clue.
Laura: I’ve never claimed I was a ‘true’ wrestler…
Tanya: Either way at Redemption I will teach you. No Rules. No Mercy. The TRUE Sin City Champion will stand tall. No matter who wins I will get one thing I want: You will recognize how you hurt Jester Smiles and myself. How you wantonly destroyed something precious to both of us. This time it’s you who doesn’t have a choice "Champ"
With that Tanya Black puts her earbuds back in and turns on the MP3 Player. Giving Madison a look of complete disdain Tanya leaves as she begins to sing again.
Tanya: You tried to manipulate, well now this is your fate.
Cause piece by piece, I’m gonna tear you down.
Can’t hold the secret now. Find out what I’m about
Did you think I’d let you have your way, well you don’t know me.
Laura turns to Madison with a state of wondering.
Laura: What provoked THAT?
Madison: I dunno. Jealousy you’re a champ and she’s not?
Laura: Heh, I guess. Well, let’s go. I’ve got my match. I’ll worry about this later.
The two sisters start making their way down the hall once again as we cut away.
Samantha Coil: The following contest is set for one fall with a 30-minute time limit, and it is a Triple Threat match for the Sin City Championship!
FUCK THE AMERICAN DREAM!
Alex Cruz emerges from the back, in his usual grey hooded sleeveless shirt, hood over his head. The crowd pops a little, but nothing too major as Alex makes his way to the ring, slapping a few hands, but mostly keeping his eyes on the ring.
Samantha Coil: First, the challenger, weighing in at ONE HUNDRED and SEVENTY-FIVE pounds…he is ALEX…CRUZ!
Alex Cruz goes up the steps and stops on the entrance ramp, looking out at the crowd and smiling. He then leaps over the ropes and stands center ring, performing no taunts and simply watching the entrance ramp.
Eryk Masters: Alex had some downright nasty things to say about Lunatikk Crippler this week. I wonder if we’ll see Laura Seton catch a break as Alex Cruz goes after The Whole F’ing Show.
Other Guy: If he is smart, going after the most experienced person in this match would not be the strategy he’d go for. However, I’m not sure he’s very smart.
The Rio De Janeiro fans erupt with cheers as "I Wupped Batman’s Ass" by Wesley Willis cues up, producing Lunatikk Crippler from behind the curtain. Luna jumps up and down a few times, pointing to every section of the crowd while doing so.
Samantha Coil: Introducing next, he weighs in at 238 pounds and stands at 6-foot-1…
Luna sprints down the ramp, slapping as many hands reaching over the crowd barricade as he can before he slides into the ring, rolling right to his feet before bounding onto the middle turnbuckle, screaming indecipherably while pumping both of his fists, drawing the crowd into a frenzy.
Samantha Coil: Hailing from South Bend, Indiana, he is "The Whole Fucked Up Show"…
Luna steps off of the middle turnbuckle and bounds across the ring, jumping onto the middle buckle of the opposite corner and doing the same routine.
Samantha Coil: …THE LUNATIKK CRIPPLER!!
Eryk Masters: The Infamous Lunatik Crippler is in the house and ready for gold!
OG: True but over-confidence may be his downfall tonight. We’ve seen how humility helped Laura Seton at Salvation.
With only one introduction left to make a good half of the crowd goes insane with cheers as the first notes of The Radio’s remix of "Whatever Gets You Through Today" hits the P.A. and Laura Seton leaps out from behind the curtain to a huge pop! With a huge grin on her face, she runs down to the barricades to slap hands with as many fans as she can, taking her time as the noise dies down enough for Coil to continue.
Samantha Coil: … weighing in tonight at one hundred seventy five pounds, she is the Sin City Champion LAURAAAAA SETON!!!
Eryk Masters: The Champ Is Here!
Other Guy: Never say that again. Ever. At Salvation Laura captured the title but while she was enjoying the celebration, these two stepped up and took out some equally tough competition.
Laura slides between the ropes and gets checked over by the ref, grinning as she hears a "MILK AND COO-KIES" chant build up in the audience. Formalities complete, she waits in her corner, dropping down to make sure her high-tops are laced tight.
The bell rings and all three face off each eyeballing each other. After a tense moment Cruz springs on the attack and begins hitting Crippler with forearms staggering the veteran as Laura watches and waits for her opportunity. Crippler soon blocks a forearm and begins hammering back with his own shots, until Cruz ducks one and lands three quick kicks to Crippler’s left knee causing him to stop long enough for Cruz to hit a headbutt followed by an elbow to the face but before he can take advantage Laura spins Cruz around and hits a Eurpean Uppercut followed by a snapmare.
Eryk: No one has the obvious advantage in the opening minutes but Alex Cruz seems hell-bent on hurting the Lunatik Crippler early on.
OG: Can you blame him? That man is beyond unpredictable and that spells dangerous.
Recovering from his headshots Crippler ambushes Laura with a stiff shot to the temple before causing a huge pop from the fans as Crippler locks Laura into a headlock and unleashes a brutal… NOOGIE! As Laura squirms Crippler transitions into the Indian Arm Burn laughing as he gets both arms glowing red. Laura staggers back as she tries to figure this out only to hear the fans laugh as Crippler hesitates on the verge of unleashing his trademark Purple Nurple. Eyes wide at the implications of his intent Laura slaps him hard in the face only for both to be sent crashing to the ground by Cruz and his running double clothesline. Without taking a moment to relax Cruz kicks Laura in the head a few times for good measure before mounting the second turnbuckle and hitting the rising Crippler with an axe-handle sending him sprawling back down.
Eryk: There we go folks! Crippler just cost himself by taking his eyes off Cruz.
OG: Well Laura Seton is laid out as well.
Cruz goes up high for a big move as he measures Crippler and waits for the moment. Feeling it he dives towards Crippler only for Laura to knock him out of mid-air with a superkick out of nowhere as the fans go nuts. However Crippler immediately grabs Laura and T-Bone Suplexes her, sending Laura crashing halfway across the ring. Stalking Laura, Crippler waits for it and explodes in the Blood Drive breaking Laura in half. Hooking the leg as the referee dives into position Crippler smiles.
At the last second Cruz hits a baseball slide dropkick to Crippler’s head breaking up the pinfall and sending Crippler to the mat in a heap. With Laura dazed Crippler sets her up agains the turnbuckle and hits a sick enziguri, dazing her long enough for Cruz to toss the champion outside the ring. Turning his wrath back to Crippler, Cruz hits the front dropkick to the seated Crippler as the fans get louder feeling the momentum shift.
Eryk: This is incredible. Someone is earning their title tonight.
OG: Alex Cruz is showing a lot of determination tonight but it’s far from over.
As Cruz and Crippler battle inside the ring, Laura gets up outside the ring and begins chastising herself, mumbling something just short of audible when she hears a fan in the front row cheering her on and trying to reassure her. Smiling Laura composes herself and dashes into the ring, hitting Cruz with a reverse DDT before attacking the still stunned Crippler with a vicious leaping clothesline. The crowd begins to chant Milk and Cookies as Laura smiles and waves to them. Grabbing Cruz she goes to German Suplex him but Crippler springs to life and grabs Laura causing a chain of German Suplexes with the referee counting until Cruz gets a shoulder up, then counts Laura until she pops up. Crippler stands up and looks at the referee a bit confused that no one was pinned. Grabbing Cruz he hits an elevated DDT before turning on Laura and nailing a code-breaker. Crippler goes to pin Cruz as Laura lays on the mat.
Sighing Crippler goes to pin Laura this time making sure to hook the near leg as he dives on top of her.
Frustrated Crippler looks around for a moment as both wrestlers start to recover. Staring at the referee who insists they were fair counts, Crippler surprises everyone in the arena by pulling the referee into a school-boy rollup only to let go and look dissapointed that no one counted.
Eryk: Okay. Lunatik Crippler may be an idiot.
OG: I blame his parents. Not enough mediciation. Or too much. Still if he can get focused the Sin City Championship will be his.
Grabbing Laura, Crippler screams to the fans before nailing a perfect The Cross only to turn into a hurricarana by Cruz however Crippler counters it into the elevated Texas Cloverleaf. Cruz fights it for a long time as the fans cheer him on, not wanting this contest to end. Cruz refuses to tap out and finally Crippler lets go only to turn straight into a desperation Superkick from Laura who falls back to her knees in pain as she tries to find her third wind. As the fans cheer and chant, Laura reaches her hands up and gestures for more noise. Drowning in their chants Laura rises to her feet and faces off with Cruz. Cruz goes for a wild punch but Laura ducks into the Split Punches followed by her trademark modified jawbreaker. The fans become unglued as Laura turns to Crippler and hits a series of forearm shots before a vicious enziguri that sends Crippler sprawling through the ropes. As soon as Crippler staggers to his feet, Laura hits the Buzzer Beater crashing into Crippler and sending him slamming against the security wall. Standing up Laura looks pleased with herself only to be taken down by Cruz hitting a Plancha, landing right on top of Laura with an audible thud that sets off a ripple effect of cheers across the arena.
Eryk: We’ve gone outside and no one is quick to their feet.
OG: Everything has been unleashed in this match. I doubt anyone will be doing much moving tomorrow.
Slowly all three stand up and get their bearings. Cruz goes after Crippler hitting him with a stiff kick to the chest before jumping up on the railing and coming off with a cross body knocking Crippler down. Rising to his feet he catches the charging Laura with a drop toe-hold that sends her crashing into the security wall face-first. Turning his attention back to Crippler, Cruz is surprised by a Rib Spreader that sends him down. Crippler picks Cruz up and tosses him into the ring before grabbing Laura and slamming her face first into the ring apron three times then rolls her into the ring. Climbing a turnbuckle Crippler waits for his moment and hits a frog splash on Laura. Crawling over Crippler goes for the pin but is laid out by Cruz hitting a second-rope leg drop to the back of Crippler’s neck. Dragging Crippler to his feet Cruz sets him up in the corner and unleashes a series of punches to the body and head. Rearing back for a knockout blow he is caught by Laura who hits a splash crushing Cruz between her body and the prone Crippler. Laura looks at both of them and nails Cruz with a hurricarana before moving to Crippler. Laura sets him up on the top rope and calls out to her fans who respond in kind. Hooking Crippler up for the superplex, Laura is surprised when it is blocked by a reviving Crippler. Feeding him a couple shots to the skull Laura goes to try again but Crippler headbutts her in the chest several times before shoving back with all his might. Laura falls hard onto the mat and as she staggers to get up, Cruz launches himself off Laura’s back and nails Crippler with a roundhouse kick to the head causing Crippler to fall to the outside far below as Cruz lands in the corner.
Eryk: I am beyond done with trying to pick a winner.
OG: I agree. Cruz keeps getting up and doing something suicidal. Laura refuses to stop fighting and Crippler is a storm of offense.
Laura and Cruz face off in the ring, both locking up and trying to get the advantage. After a tense stand-off Cruz starts to get the strength advantage but Laura scores a surprise knee to the gut and follows it up with a scoop slam followed by a quick elbow drop. With Cruz down Laura takes a second to make sure Crippler isn’t about to ambush her, then Laura locks on the Camel Clutch. The fans hold their breath in anticipation as Cruz fights gamely to get out of the move even though he is stuck in the middle of the ring. Finally as Cruz seems on the verge of tapping out, Crippler comes in and nails Laura with a knee to the back of the head followed by a Double A Spinebuster. Looking like he is ready to finish things Crippler grabs Cruz and lifts him up, gesturing to the fans that it’s all over. Some of the fans cheer at the thought of him taking the victory but a good number boo this turn of events as well. Shrugging his shoulders Crippler sets up but Cruz wakes up and hits a series of punches to Crippler’s gut before setting up the Cruz Control, however at the last moment Crippler counters it into the Lunatikk Sweet causing a massive HOLY SHIT chant from the surprised crowd.
Eryk: Alex Cruz won’t die but Lunatikk Crippler won’t let him win either!
OG: These two men pissed each other off and neither wants to lose to the other now!
Seeing Cruz knocked out on the ground Crippler dives in for the pin but is immediately hit by a kick to the spine by Laura. Grabbing him up Laura quickly locks on The Cookie Cutter as the fans pop huge. Out of instinct Crippler rolls out of the ring on impact causing Laura to fume until she sees Cruz still laid out. Quickly she hooks both legs as the referee goes to count.
Samantha Coil: Your Winner Via Pinfall and STILL SIN CITY CHAMPION LAURA SETON!
Eryk: The Champion Retains! Laura picked the bones and pins Alex Cruz again!
OG: The master of hardcore wrestling is not going to be happy but all the credit in the world. Everyone had several chances to win it!
He sits in the darkened locker room that belongs to Greg Allocca, his gargantuan frame seated on a steel chair in the corner, a small circular table sitting before him. At home in the absence of light, he simply waits, eyes locked on the door.
Pale hands are busy ripping thin, narrow strips from a stack of booking sheets. The sound of the paper tearing seems to soothe his charbroiled soul, allowing him to a slip into a state of catatonic timelessness. His head lowers, his hands moving slowly, drawing out that unpleasant sound…making it last.
A pile of shredded paper surrounds his white boots, the pile growing larger with each strip torn from the stack.
After what seems like a long time to him, Isaac is finally brought out of his trance by the sound of the door creaking open. His head raises, sharp green eyes taking in the silhouette of The Angel of Violence.
Greg runs his hand along the wall, searching for the light switch. A voice cuts him off, freezing him in place.
Entragian: “Leave the light off, old friend.”
We hear the sound of Greg wetting his lips as he takes a step towards the voice.
Greg: “Who the fuck is in here?!?”
That pallid hand reaches out again, snapping a small lamp on in the center of the table. A dim, shadowy dome of illumination spreads through the room. Isaac doesn’t move after turning on the lamp, his expression grim as he focuses on nothing more than the ripped up sheet of paper in his hands.
Greg steps forward, closing the door behind him, his eyes wide and cautious.
Greg pauses here, as though he’s at a loss for words, not sure of how to continue. Entragian breaks the silence, his voice hollow, his gaze still downcast.
Entragian: “I’d heard the rumors, but for the longest time, I refused to believe them. The Angel of Violence RISEN from the ashes, now a member of the SHOOT Project roster…”
There’s no emotion in Isaac’s voice, it is strangely empty. His hand moves down a sheet of paper, and he tears it carefully.
Entragian: “See, I thought you were gone forever, Greg. You dropped off the face of the planet all those long years ago, back when you and I were blazing through LEGACY like meteors on the rise.”
Entragian: “You were troubled then, that much I know. I thought the worst had occurred. Perhaps an overdose. Hell, I thought maybe you just laid down in an alley somewhere amongst the garbage and the rats, hoping to die the slow, painful death of a rabid dog…”
Very slowly, Entragian rises up out of his seat. The sheet of paper slips from his hand and floats down to the floor. The albino takes a few steps towards Greg, still not making eye contact with Allocca.
Entragian: “Yet here you stand, looking revitalized…looking like an Angel reborn from hellfire, spat out by the heavens to walk the sour ground of this world once more.”
Greg doesn’t know how to take all of this, his eyes scanning the pale monster for any sign of a motive, yet he finds…only blankness.
Isaac closes the distance even more, until he’s mere inches away from Allocca.
The seven footer looms over the much smaller man, looking down at him from behind a veil of white hair. There’s a moment of uneasy silence, a moment where you fear Isaac may try to rip Greg’s head from his shoulders, but then something UNPRECEDENTED occurs.
Entragian’s face breaks out into a GENUINE, warm smile, and he embraces Greg roughly, hugging him like a long lost brother. Greg is so astounded by this that he doesn’t even move against Isaac’s titanic arms. One of Isaac’s pale hands trails along the back of Greg’s shaved skull as he whispers, snake-like, into Greg’s ear.
Entragian: “It’s been far too LONG, brother. I feared you’d be lost forever. Yet here you stand, the man who helped me to grow to new heights in this industry…the ONE man who stood at my side when no else would.”
Finally Entragian steps back, releasing Greg, his smile still bright on his face.
Entragian: “Welcome home.”
Greg Allocca seems more than a little creeped out by this turn of events. He takes a few steps back from the gigantic Entragian, gazes up at the man for a moment, then shakes his head violently from side to side, as if trying to shake the memories from his head.
Greg: "That…..that was a long time ago, Isaac."
Entragian’s smile slowly disappears, as he doesn’t seem to understand what Greg is saying.
Greg: "Look, I don’t bear you any ill will. In your own way, you were a friend to me back then. But I….I wasn’t myself at that point in my life. The war with X-Calibur….it left wounds on my soul that never healed, even to this day."
Entragian smiles again, that unsettling smile of sharpened teeth. He shakes his head slowly.
Entragian: "You don’t have to worry about that anymore, brother. I have friends here, friends who would be glad to take you under their wing with my recommendation, and when you glimpse our vision of the new SHOOT Project, those old wounds, they will heal. I promise you that."
Entragian nods sincerely, poison green eyes scanning Greg’s troubled features.
Entragian: “You can become one with SCAR, Greg. It could be just like the old days again…only better.”
Greg runs his hand over his shaved head, and then his face goes blank for a moment as if he’s not even there. Eventually, recognition creeps back into his face, and he speaks.
Greg: "I’m not sure your kind of healing is what I need right now, Isaac. A lot of things have happened since the time when you and I stood side by side. I’m not the same person anymore. I’m not the….the monster that I was."
The smile fades from Isaac’s face, replaced by an incredulous look.
Entragian: “…Are you trying to tell me that you’ve redeemed yourself, Greg? Turned over a new leaf? I can’t believe what I’m hearing…have you found Jesus Christ, Angel of Violence? What the fuck is going on inside of your head right now…”
Isaac scoffs, his voice becoming a purr laced with temptation.
Entragian: “I’m offering you POWER, Greg. Once in SCAR, you’re untouchable in SHOOT. You’re practically a blood-soaked GOD when you join our ranks; I know you can’t honestly tell me you don’t want that…”
Greg is getting anxious with the way this conversation is going, his feelings made visible to all by the trembling of his clenched fists.
Greg: "You’re offer is tempting, Isaac. More than you could possibly know. It would be…SO easy…for me to join up with you again, and let my demons run free, but that’s not what I want. The last time you and I stood side by side, it almost destroyed me. It almost destroyed who I was. You might not understand it, but I broke into this business when I was 18 years old, and I had a dream. My dream was to be a hero, not a monster. But the things I’ve done in my life, in and out of the ring….especially the things I did in LEGACY…I’m not proud of them.
I may not have found Jesus Christ, and I may not have redeemed myself, yet. But redemption is definitely what I am looking for, and I won’t find it rubbing shoulders with you and the psychopaths you associate with."
With that, Greg steps out of the way, to allow Isaac free access to the door.
A look of legitimate hurt crosses Isaac’s pale face, for a fleeting moment it humanizes the monster, but the moment doesn’t last. Once the hurt fades, black, malignant hatred floods in to replace it.
Entragian: “You’d betray me, then? One of your oldest friends. One of your ONLY friends.”
Isaac doesn’t allow Greg to reply, he makes a beeline for the door, stopping with his back turned to Allocca. His head tilts around, looking back at Allocca over his shoulder.
Entragian: “You have changed, Allocca. NOT for the better. I never forget a betrayal, and this one in particular will stay with me FOREVER.”
Isaac’s hand takes hold of the door, one last, acidic statement falling from his forked tongue.
Entragian: “Consider your opportunity flushed, Allocca. It lies atop piss and shit now, deep within a sewer. You don’t want to be a part of SCAR? Then you’re just meat. And sooner or later…you will get eaten.”
Isaac slams the door HARD as he exits, the doorframe rattling violently. The Angel of Violence is left looking frazzled and disturbed, his eyes lingering on the door.
Other Guy: I’m getting word that we are about to have a special announcement…
Eryk Masters: That’s weird; I don’t remember being told about that.
Other Guy: That’s why it’s special announcement and that’s why they had me announce it… because I’m awesome.
Eryk Masters: No you’re not dude, don’t lie…
The lights in the arena go out…
…and then suddenly come back up in a swath of gold… then the color quickly changes to a dark purple… then quickly turns to blue. Then again. Then again. Then again, the colors changing so rapidly it’s dizzying.
Other Guy: This isn’t funny! I’m an apoplectic!
Eryk Masters: I think you mean epileptic.
HEEEEERE WE ARE!
The strobing lights explode into a bright white light as fireworks go off at the top of the stage.
BORN TO BE KINGS!
Eryk Masters: I stand corrected…
WE’RE THE PRINCES OF THE UNIVERSE!
Eryk Masters: Is this a new Hierarchy entrance? Those assholes are really full of themse-
As the fireworks begin to recede, three figures stand with their hands behind their backs at the top of the stage, heads down.
Other Guy: What is this? I don’t even…
HERE WE BELONG! FIGHTING TO SURVIVE! IN A WORLD WITH THE DARKEST POWERS!
All three men raise their heads and standing there are Lennox Ferguson, Ichiro Seppuku and Azraith DeMitri – each with a big grin on their face as the music begins to pick up and all three men begin to clap in unison before pumping their fists to the crowd and making their way down the ramp to the ring.
Meanwhile the crowd sits and stares, dumbfounded at what they are watching.
Other Guy: Wait… is this the theme from ‘Highlander’?!"
Once at ringside, all three men slide into the ring and then leap into the air for a collective high-five before the music cuts out and they turn around to face the crowd which, after an awkward several second silence… begins to boo.
Lennox Ferguson, obviously annoyed, is the first to speak.
Lennox Ferguson: Really!? REALLY!? You’re going to boo that? That took literally MINUTES to coreograph!
And do know how much fucking money it cost to get the rights to that song from both Queen AND Lions Gate?
This only gets the fans more upset, prompting Azraith DeMitri to grab the microphone and yell:
Azraith DeMitri: SHUT THE FUCK UP!
The crowd immediately does as they are told to which Azraith feigns surprise before smirking and handing the microphone to Lennox, who gives Azraith an annoyed glance.
Lennox: Alright. Now listen up. We have a very important announcement to make…
Eryk Masters: This better be good…
Other Guy: Hey, this is Grade A wedding reception entertainment right here. Don’t knock it.
Lennox: …right Ichiro?
Lennox looks up toward Ichiro, handing off the microphone as the former SHOOT Project Champion nods in agreement.
Ichiro: Exactly my friend… you see, as I’ve explained already, and as I showed tonight, Kenji Yamada is a dead man walking. And the longer he waits to be put into the ground, the harder it’s going to be for him when we finally gets to meet his maker.
Ichiro smiles broadly.
Tonight was only a taste of what I have in store for Kenji until he finally agrees to face me in a match here in SHOOT Project.
Ichiro smiles devilishly.
Ichiro: But that’s just ONE part of the story… right Azraith?
Ichiro turns and hands off the microphone to Azraith, who takes it and surveys the crowd once before lowering his towards the microphone.
Azraith: Y- Your right… and I…I gotta apologize. I didn’t mean to snap like that y’all. I’m sorry. It’s just that I haven’t been around recently, and I wanted this to be special…not the lazy-eyed, derp special you people usually have to deal with. No, I wanted to be a part of something truly…fuckin’ awesome. You know? Something for those guys in the back.”
Az points back to the back row of the main floor, where a group of guys stand up and cheer out wildly, holding up a bunch of signs with font too small to read. Az grins broadly as he continues.
Azraith: Speaking of being away…y’all are probably kinda wondering about that, huh? It’s pretty simple. Cade got hot-shotted to the front of the line, I lost, and after that I had shit to do.
Azraith looks around.
Azraith: Although, it really wasn’t shit at all. It’s a little boy. An adorable little fucker by the name of Michael Damien Nemesio. Little Mikey has the blood of kings in him, and the name of warriors long his senior. He’s still small…but I place a wager when I’m long gone he’ll be standing on the aftermath of my legacy, looking to make a name for himself, just like I did.”
The crowd cheers slightly at the formal announcement of Az’s child, and DeMitri chuckles a bit before nodding.
Azraith: Now that I got that sappy shit outta the way… the question you’re probably all asking is ‘why these two’, right?
The answer is pretty simple. Me and Ichiro? We go way back. I heard he was doing a little… hunting, and he heard I had some experience on his prey. Mutually beneficial relationship, ya dig?
Az smirks and cocks his thumb backwards.
Azraith: As for me and Lennox over here…I’ve never been hesitant in saying this kid has all the tools in the world at his disposal to make a long, LONG lasting impact here in SHOOT…and as of right now looking over this roster, I gotta say I’d much rather have these two looking over my back than anyone else here.”
Ichiro and Ox exhange subsequent eye rolls as the former SHOOT Project Champion continues:
Azraith: Aw c’mon y’all. You know it’s the truth!
Azraith stops and lifts a finger to his lips.
Azraith: There’s that word again…Truth. Something I’ve always been a pretty big proponent of. I’ve told you when you’ve been wrong, haven’t I?
Azraith: See? You wouldn’t react that way if I was lyin’. It’d be that fake-ass applause you give to people like Lunatik Crippler or Tanya Black. I’ll take an honest boo over a cheap pop anyday.
We three? We’re on the same level about that. We ain’t here to make ya smile, we’re here to win.
Whether it’s seeing Kenji squirm… or whether it’s seeing if I can goad some other ‘brutal…inhuman’ activities out of some people around here…
Crowd ROARS at the implications of that, and Az barely contains his smile.
Azraith: …and what better way to assure those things than announcing our own entry into the ranks of SHOOT’s tag team division?
The crowd roars in approval.
Azraith: In fact… let’s bring those motherfuckers out! YO! ADRIAN! KENJI! ISAAC! Bring your asses down to the ring right now!
Now the crowd goes ballistic as Ichiro steps up beside Azraith, both looking intently at the rampway…
Oh, there ain’t no rest for the wicked…
Ichiro and Azraith look confused as Cage the Elephant begins to play over the loudspeaker.
Other Guy: Hey! That’s Manchester Black’s music!
And sure enough, a slightly injured-looking Thomas Manchester Black appears from behind the curtain and begins to make his way to the ring, microphone in hand.
TMB: Woah. Woah. WOAH… you two need to shut the fuck up right now.
The fans roar in support.
TMB: You can do whatever the fuck you want to Project SCAR… once you deal with ME.
Manchester Black slides into the ring to a growing roar of applause.
Eryk Masters: Looks like Black is still upset at the blindsided attack he and Jaime Alejandro faced at the last Revolution!
Other Guy: Wouldn’t you be Eryk? And since The Saint isn’t out here I can only imagine JUST how badly he must be hurt after those repeated shots with that asp that he took to the face at the hands of Ichiro Seppuku.
Azraith looks at Ichiro and then back to TMB.
Azraith: Alright then. Which one of us would you like to kick your ass?
The crowd’s excitement gets kicked up a notch.
TMB smirks, feeding off of the crowd, as he looks from Ichiro to Azraith once again and raises the microphone to speak…
…but before he can, Ichiro leaps forward and absolutely CRACKS an asp across Manchester Black’s jaw.
Other Guy: That’s a move straight out of Mortal Kombat!
Thomas Manchester Black manages to see the attack in enough time that he misses the full force of the blow, which would have otherwise broken his jaw, but he still staggers backwards, struggling to find his bearings. Unfortunately, he quickly stumbles into the open arms of Azraith DeMitri, who hooks Manchester Black’s arms and lifts him into the air!
Eryk Masters: NO!
Upon impact, TMB’s head whips up and then immediately snaps back down onto the mat.
Quickly, Ichiro Seppuku and Lennox Ferguson gather around the unconscious Manchester Black, eagerly anticipating him getting up – but he doesn’t. Azraith brushes off his pants as now he too stands up, helping to form a circle around TMB as Ichiro lifts the microphone Azraith had dropped before hitting the Extinction.
Ichiro: Sorry about that Tommy… you want us? You’ve got to face BOTH of us.
If you can find a replacement for that worthless sack of meat Jaime Alejandro, then consider it my and Azraith’s first official tag team match in SHOOT… if not, then I guess we’ll be seeing you in a handicapped match.
The fans are booing furiously.
Ichiro: Either way Tommy boy, you’re going to have to come face to face with The Truth… and trust me… The Truth is going to HURT.
Ichiro drops the microphone as “Name of the Game” by The Crystal Method hits the speakers and all three men step away from the unmoving Thomas Manchester Black and salute the crowd before the video feed cuts away.
Eryk Masters: Our next match is a tag match featuring The Gunslingers vs. RTanya Black and Dina Bryce. This is a follow up to a singles match between Tanya and Stan at Dominion 4.
Other Guy: Tanya made Stan tap, and I have a feeling she’s going to do it again.
Eryk Masters: Stan was distracted by VAS making an appearance.
Other Guy: Stan isn’t making any excuses he admitted that he tapped out, stop try to make excuses for him. Maybe it’s time for the old man to hang up the boots, or the hat as it were.
Samantha Coil: The following match is scheduled for one fall with a 30 minute time limit. Introducing first from Boston, Massachusetts, TANYA BLACK!
You Don’t Know, You Just Don’t Know Me At All
The lights dim down for a moment and the video wall springs to life showing various images of men and women being laid out and taken out with one person being a constant. Seeing the video the fans begin to focus their excitement as the speakers spring to life.
As You Don’t Know Me continues to play sending a wave of excitement across the arena Tanya Black emerges out of the back singing along to the verses for a moment before waiting at the top of the ramp for her partner.
Samantha Coil: Her tag team partner "Daredevil" Dina Bryce.
"One Second Of Insanity" by The Butterfly Effect plays and Dina comes out from behind the curtain jumping and full of energy. She meets with Tanya and they make their way to ringside shaking hands with the fans. Tanya slides into the ring while Dina takes the time to take off her bandanna and give it to a little girl in the front row before following he rpartner into the ring. The two go to their corner and discuss strategy while they await their opponents.
Samantah Coil: Their opponents, Stan Erichson and Jacob Fisher, THE GUNSLINGERS!
A series of gun shots ring out and "Hillbilly Bone" by Blake Shelton blares through the speakers as Jacob and Stan step out onto the ramp. Stan is still wearing his black stetson cowboy hat as they make their way to the ring, Stan at a steady pace while Jacob seems more laid back. Both men walk up the steps and wipe their feet off on the top step before stepping onto the apron. Stan is about to enter the rign when Jacob says he’ll start and steps into the ring. Stan sets his hat on the ring post right in front of him. Tanya nods to Dina and Dina exits the ring. Jacob and Tanya meet in the center of the ring and shake hands before the match. As the ref calls for the bell someone steps from behind the curtian and starts to walk towards ringside.
Eryk Masters: That’s Alex Cruz, what’s he doing here?
Other Guy: He’s been seen backstage talking to Dina earlier today, maybe he’s here to make sure the Gunslingers don’t try to take advantage of the young ladies.
Alex Cruz grabs a chair and sets it up on the arena floor in the corner of the Dina and Tanya. Dina looks at Cruz for a moment before focusing back on the match, meanwhile Tanya never takes her focus off her opponents. They two lock up in the center of the ring and Jacob immediately takes control and pulls Tanya into a headlock. Tanya wiggles her head free and pushes Jacob into the ropes, Jacob rebounds and jumps over Tanya who dropped flat on the mat. Tanya then gets to her feet and leap frogs over Jacob and rebounds off the other side of the ring and then stops short in the center of the ring.
Eryk Masters: What is she doing, she seems to just be going through the motions, she hasn’t attempted an attack on Jacob yet. Maybe she really does like him?
Jacob turns to Stan and shrugs like he’s not sure what’s going on. Stan doesn’t even blink and gestures with his hand to hit her. Before Jacob can turn around Tanya hits him a bulldog luckily Jacob was close enough to his corner and Stan tags himself in.
Other Guy: See women are the master of the mind games Tanya knows just how to distract Jacob, Stan isn’t going to fall for those tricks.
Eryk Masters: She has another plan for Stan.
As soon as Stan steps through the ropes he is hit with a dropkick sending him into his corner, but he shakes it off and walks towards Tanya. Tanya throws a few kicks towards Stans legs but he blocks them and whips her into the ropes when she rebounds he lifts her up and delivers a spining slam that shakes the ring. He takes a step back and drops straight down delivering a sicking headbutt. Stan shakes his head as he gets to his feet as Tanya rolls around on the mat holding her head.
Eryk Masters: Talk about Excedrin headache #9.
Stan waits for Tanya to start to get to her feet than drops to a three point stance and takes her clear off her feet with a three point stance.
Other Guy: Stan really taking it to Tanya looking to get revenge for his loss at Dominion 4.
Stan takes a step back and goes for a rolling knee drop, but Tanya rolls out of the way and makes a tag. Tanya is on all fours trying to gather her wits as Stan starts to get to his feet. Dina hops into the ring runs jumps off of Tanya’s back and hits a flying cross body sending Stan into the corner. Dina hops to the second rope and attempts to pull Stan out of the corner with a top rope bulldog, but Stan just lifts her and tosses her forward, but Diana lands on her feet and sends a mule kick back as Stan comes out of the corner and sends him over the top rope to the outside. Luckily Stan is aware of his surroundings and tags Jacob as he goes over the top to the outside. Dina didn’t see that Stan made the tag so she steps takes a few steps back and runs forward and launches herself over the top rope as Stan gets to hsi feet she takes him right back down again with a suicide plancha. Jacob stands in the ring over seeing the carnage as the crowd starts to boo.
Eryk Masters: "Daredevil" Dina Bryce with a a crazy suicide plancha, but that must be the first time I’ve heard the fans boo a high flying move like that.
Other Guy: I don’t think they are booing Dina. We’ve got company. It’s like a party out here.
VAS jumps over the guard rail and grabs Stan’s black Stetson hat off the ring post. Jacob is about to go after them when Jay reveals a huge set of garden shears. Stan gets to his feet and sees VAS with his hat and takes a step forward then sees the giant scissors and stops. Meanwhile, Alex Cruz has gotten up and picked up his chair and is walking towards VAS when Ray sees him and Jay opens the sheers. Stan motions for Cruz to back off.
Other Guy: We’re at a stand off in the middle of our schedule match because of an old cowboy hat. What makes this hat so damn special? Does it hide magic rabbits? Does it tell us that Azrael Goeren belongs to Slytherin?
Jay slices through the hat anyway making multiple quick jagged cuts and letting the ruined hat fall to the ground. They then jump back over the guard rail and run off into the crowd. Jacob and Cruz immediately go after them, while Stan stops and looks at the hat like someone just ripped out his heart and then hops the rail and takes off after VAS.
Other Guy: Do they realize the y are chasing after a guy holding a large pair of razor sharp garden shears? Why does Alex Cruz even care?
Eryk Masters: Something tells me after what they just did they could have a rocket launcher and Stan would go after them. I think Cruz is just letting VAS and everyone else know he won’t stand for these kind of shenanigans.
Other Guy: Is this match a no contest?
Eryk Masters: Dina is in the ring it looks like the ref is making the ten count.
Jacob sees Stan and Cruz going after VAS and stops and changes direction and runs full speed back towards the ring. He hops the guard rail and slides into the ring at the refs nine count.
Eryk Masters: Jacob has returned to the ring and this match is set to continue, but now it looks like we have a handicap match.
Dina grabs Jacob’s arm and locks in a hammerlock and goes for the pepsi twist spinning around and leveling him with a short arm clothesline, but Jacob bonuses back to his feet. With the adrenaline running through his veins and the size of Dina he is able to shake off the move for the most part. Dina Whips Jacob into the rops and makes a quick tag to Tanya. Tanya leaps off the top rope with a clothesline while Dina sweeps Jacob’s legs out from underneath him with a variation of the total elimination. Tanya goes for the cover.
When Jake starts to get to his feet Tanya whips him into the corner and follows up with a big Splash. Tanya makes a quick tag out to Dina. Jacob stumbles forward and Dina jumps to the top rope and jumps off and nails Jacob with a flying dropkick.
Other Guy: Look who’s back Guess he didn’t catch up with VAS.
Stan climbs back over the guardrail and picks up his mutilated hat staring at it for a moment before setting it down in his corner and climbing up on the apron. Dina’s dropkick unfortunately for her sends Jacob in the direction of his corner and Stan tags himself in. Stan quickly gets in the ring and runs forward nailing Dina with a knee to the face as she got up. He quickly picked her up and threw her across the ring into the corner. When she steps out of the corner Stan throws her over his shoulder with a high back body drop.
Eryk Masters: Stan is back, but he’s still pissed and now he’s taking out that aggression on Dina.
Tanya leans in to attempt to make a tag Stan runs to get momentum for the lariat as Dina starts to get to his feet, but when he hits the ropes he bumps into Dina and knocks her off the apron and she hits her head on the guardrail. Alex Cruz returns to ringside and is hoping over the guardrail on the other side just in time to see Stan level Dina with a vicious lariat. Stan immediately drops and hooks the leg.
Samantha Coil: You Winners, Stan Erichson and Jacob Fisher, THE GUNSLINGERS!
Stan rolls off and goes to his corner and picks up his hat again jsut staring at it. Alex Cruz slides into the ring to check on Dina, while Jacob has already went around to the other side of the ring to check on Tanya at first she pushes him way punchign the ringside mat but then lets him help her up and they both get back into the ring where Cruz has helped Dina up to her feet. Dina has one hand on the back of her head but offers the other to Jacob who shakes it than shakes Tanya’s hand. Stan seems to snap out of gaze and gives a nod to Tanya who returns it. He offers his hand to Dina who hesitates than shakes it. Alex Cruz looks on seemingly annoyed that he went to help Stan and Stan came back and manhandled his friend to get the win. Stan than turns and leaves the ring and at the bottom of the ramp he puts the remains of the shredded hat back on his head before heading up the ramp. Tanya looks at Jacobs and Jacob rolls out of the ring and goes after Stan.
Other Guy: VAS have officially gotten inside Stan’s head, but I’m not sure they know what they have gotten themselves into.
Eryk Masters: Someone needs to buy him a new hat…
The shot opens in the SCAR locker room, only two members of the diabolical faction present at the moment. Corazon sits on a bench in the middle of the room, holding up a black-handled screwdriver for Isaac to see.
Entragian sits across from him on a steel chair, his feet propped up on the edge of the bench. The Iron Fist Championship rests in Isaac’s lap, and he’s unconsciously running his fingertips over the faceplate, liking the texture of the dried blood staining the belt.
The Ivory Terror’s eyes are locked on the screwdriver, and then his gaze floats up to Corazon’s face, looking at him with rapt interest.
Entragian: How did it feel when you did it?
Corazon smiles, and shuts his eyes, thinking back to that moment in his then young career.
Corazon: I am not sure I can find a word to describe it, Isaac. It was…
Still with his eyes shut, he runs his fingers along the screwdriver, still smiling.
Corazon: It was euphoric. Gouging Del Carver and then putting him out of this business until a time when I feel it okay for him to return… that… that is something that is pure euphoria. It was magical. Sometimes… when I think back to that moment, that is when I truly realized what I was… what I would become.
He chuckles, and opens his eyes to look at Isaac Entragian.
Corazon: That feeling… that euphoria, that is what drives me to do the things I do. That is why I seek to raze this place… for that feeling of euphoria. That feeling of beauty. That magic.
Isaac smirks broadly. He raises up his hand and Adrian tosses him the screwdriver. Entragian marvels at the instrument for a moment, treating it like some delicate artifact.
Entragian: Just touching the item that slew Diamond Del Carver sends a shiver up my spine. I bet the old vulture screamed in the end. I would have LOVED to have been at your side to hear it…
Suddenly the door swings open, and both Isaac & Adrian look up to see Kenji enter the locker room. A palpable silence falls between SCAR’s Black Death & The Pale Rider, both men studying Yamada carefully. It’s an almost uncomfortable silence…
Kenji breaks the uncomfortable silence by crashing his fist against the wall. His eyes are not motionless and devoid as usual, they seem to vibrate with uneasiness. Shaking his very core with an unseen insanity. A sneer barely overcomes his face, for but a second, but given the amount of emotion Kenji usually shows it seems an eternity. He doesn’t say a word. He walks past both Issac and Corazon, his eyes not even shifting to look at them. He sits on the far end of the locker room, creating an invisible divide between himself and his brothers. Not a word.
Isaac shoots Corazon a confused look, and then he focuses on Kenji, calling out to the obviously furious Sociopath Pioneer.
Entragian: Someone’s blood is running hot, I see. I love me some mindless rage, gets me all excited! Hell, I think the wall looks better that way…
Adrian nods, a smirk touching his lips.
Entragian: Care to share your woes with your kin, oh’ brother of mine?
Kenji practically leaps out of his seat like a feral beast. Hunched over and with his hands outspread like talons pointed upward.
Kenji: Is this a joke? My…WOES? Look at the two of you. Drenched in gold like it means something. Worshiping those belts like they actually MEAN something. When was our end goal BELTS? I don’t want the belts of the heroes and beautiful of SHOOT. I want their beauty, I want the beauty that makes them infinitely more fortunate than we EVER were. But you two…every other word out of your mouths seems to be about those irrelevant lumps of metal. That being CHAMPION of a SHOOT Project is a GOOD thing.
This place isn’t beautiful yet. There should be no PRIDE in being its champion.
Isaac removes his feet from the bench, his body transitioning from a relaxed state to a fully attentive posture as he places the Iron Fist Title down on the bench in front of him.
Entragian: Are you BLIND, Kenji? What have we been doing since we arrived here in SHOOT? We’ve been defiling heroes LEFT AND RIGHT, we’ve been crushing fucking skulls, we’ve been bathing in the blood of the GOOD and the JUST. Already we’ve carved a slice of beauty from this company, and that hole grows larger with each passing week!
The monster leans forward, his eyes starting to boil with frustration, one pale index finger pointed at Yamada.
Entragian: You know I hate the perfect, privileged pieces of excrement that hold roster spots in SHOOT just as much as you do, and considering that, I see NOTHING wrong with stealing their titles. Adrian & I PERVERT these championships; the very fact that we hold them is a hideous scar on the face of this company’s prestige.
Isaac exhales through his open mouth, hot breath blasting forth past his razor-sharp teeth.
Entragian: Don’t you see that? We WARP everything we touch, including these belts. They’re not just lumps of gold, they’re totems of SCAR’s power…they command the same respect of severed heads placed on pikes…these belts DRAW the victims to us…
Kenji: That’s not good enough, Issac. I’d have rather seen you decapitate the holder of that belt and lose it. I’d rather you broke every bone in his body than take something as MEANINGLESS as that damn belt. TAKE SOMETHING THAT MEANS SOMETHING! Everyone loses a belt, you two are no exception. I am no exception. They pass as surely as time itself. But, when you steal something so precious and cut something so deep that the visage of that deed never…EVER…heals?
Then I will greet you with a smile. Then I will embrace your ego. THEN we will succeed.
Everyone gets over losing a title. Everyone gets back up. Everyone comes running back for more. When both your former champions come back running…you had better assure me that they don’t get back up. That they are left beautiful. That they are left as we are now.
Isaac crosses his arms, a mask of threadbare composure on his face, but beneath that, it looks like storm clouds are brewing.
Entragian: Maybe it’s just me Kenji, but as of late, it seems like NOTHING is good enough for you. You don’t have to worry about us; we’ve been loyal to the cause since DAY ONE. All three of us have our own ways of spreading beautiful corruption, that’s what makes SCAR unique, it’s what makes us strong.
Isaac motions towards the Iron Fist Championship, his eyes full of barely restrained lunacy.
Entragian: And when it comes to that title? I took it because I WANTED it. In this business, I TAKE whatever the fuck I want, WHENEVER the fuck I want, and no one will ever tell me otherwise. That’s the way it’s always been, and that’s the way it’ll always be.
Isaac falls eerily quiet after having said this, his face becoming stony and cruel.
He looks to SCAR’s Black Death, who has remained silent during much of this exchange, waiting to see what Corazon has to say on the matter.
Corazon looks at Isaac and then at his Laws of Survival Championship, and then finally to Kenji Yamada.
Corazon: My brother… I find your lack of faith… in us… in our cause… somewhat concerning. We hold these championships, not because of a desire for gold, or glory… and not for notoriety of fame. We hold them because it allows us the leverage to move about the SHOOT Project and scar and maim who we wish, when we wish.
Corazon: And quite frankly… my "hero" has already checked out. Mike Dexter? Pfft… he has done what everyone expected of him. Got in over his head, and now where is he? Injured, at the hands of myself, and then punctuated by Cronos Diamante. He will not be back. He has been removed. Lanced, like a putrid boil. You see? Our mission remains clear, and we remain strong. We remain dominant. That is why what we do what we do, and why I have been carrying out our mission even before yours, and Isaac’s arrival here.
Corazon looks again at the Laws of Survival Championship, and then again to Kenji Yamada.
Corazon: I know you are struggling with your inner workings, and we are here for you. We will scar the beautiful. We HAVE scarred the beautiful.
Breathing in heavily, Corazon shuts his eyes once more, still with a smile on his face.
Kenji eases up, his spine straightens out, his arms go limp at his side. He brings up a single hand to cover his face, shaking it, not at anything that was said. A light groan can be heard.
Kenji: Ever since…ever since he…
Kenji throws his hand down.
Kenji: No, nevermind, forget it.
Kenji storms out of the locker room, almost at a run. Without saying another word.
Isaac watches him go, something almost like pity shining in his eyes. The albino glances at Corazon, and then shakes his head from side to side.
Entragian: I think I know exactly what’s bothering him. A certain blue-haired butcher from days long since passed, I’d guess. A butcher that will need to be dealt with…soon.
Entragian trails off here, a smile of white razor-blades blooming on his face. Adrian returns that smile while twirling his screwdriver between his fingers, giving us the idea that he can hardly wait.
The scene fades out on this.
A quick percussion of drumsticks comes over the speakers as the fans all turn to watch and, in perfect sync with a roaring guitar riff, The Angel of Violence, Greg Allocca, burst from the backstage area, taking in the favorable crowd reaction.
Samantha Coil: “LAAAAAADIES AND GENTLEMEN! The following match is for one fall with a 25 minute time limit.”
“Losing All” by Down continues to play as Allocca cocks his head from right to left, a weak smile forming on his lips which quickly disappears as he refocuses his attention on the ring and begins his walk down the rampway.
Samantha Coil: “Introducing first, he is the ANGEL OF VIOLENCE… GREG ALLOOOOOOOCCA!”
Allocca jumps onto the side of the ring and then quickly leaps up again, positioning himself quickly onto the top rope before launching himself backwards into a perfectly-executed backflip into the center of the ring, much to the approval of the crowd.
Allocca motions to the crowd before grabbing a hold of his shirt, pulling it off and swinging it around several times before flinging it into the crowd where a group of drunk-looking locals immediately begin throwing punches in order to claim their prize.
Allocca begins to chuckle but almost immediately the lights in the arena go out as jubilation turns into aggravation.
A roar of boos begins to surface as the sound of a heartbeat begins to pulse through the speakers, a white flash of light crashing in like a cymbal on each thump. The sound of violin and guitar then begins as “DIM Scene” by the GazettE is played through the arena.
The words “PROJECT: SCAR” flash onto the SHOOT Project screen, the letters looking like rotted, bleeding hamburger meat as the pulsing, throbbing strobe lights crash on, full blast – almost blinding the arena in white before the lights burn out, leaving a single spotlight on the rampway which a determined-looking Kenji Yamada steps into from the darkness.
Samantha Coil: And his opponent, representing Project: SCAR, he hails from Kyoto, Japan… KENJI YAAAAAAMAADA!
The fans boo as the spotlight literally follows Kenji’s slow procession into the ring until, finally, he is up and over the ropes and all the light in the arena return to their normal levels – just in time for the crowd to see Greg Allocca and Kenji Yamada locking stares and sizing each other up.
Eryk Masters: Every time a member of Project: SCAR comes out, it’s like there’s a temporal disturbance, like it’s the Goddamned Bermuda Triangle!
Other Guy: Forget the triangle Eryk, look at the squared circle! Kenji is trying to play mind games with Allocca!
Indeed, Kenji is whispering something to Allocca whose face immediately loses color.
Dennis Heflin signals for the bell and Kenji catches Allocca off guard, immediately hitting a Yakuza Kick which sends Allocca staggering backwards much to the obvious pleasure of Kenji Yamada.
Allocca regains his balance and then quickly puts up his defenses, waiting to see what Kenji does next.
Other Guy: OH! Quick start here by Kenji, and is it just me or does Allocca look a bit cautious?
Eryk Masters: He does OG, but I have no idea why.
Kenji just laughs as he rushes at Allocca who looks to dive out of the way but Kenji is a step ahead as he wraps his arms around Allocca’s neck, looking for a Bulldog, but ALLOCCA REVERSES!
Allocca reaches up and literally FLIPS Kenji Yamada head over heels onto his back and follows Kenji down to the mat with a head lock!
Kenji thrashes wildly, then quickly regains his composure, balling up his right hand into a fist and SUCKER PUNCHING Allocca in the jaw, forcing the Angel of Violence to let go of his hold.
Allocca still has the dominant position on Kenji, however, and rather than go for another submission attempt, he leaps up into the air and dropkicks the recovering Kenji Yamada into the ropes – which Kenji uses to push off and gain momentum into a cross-body block which sends both men to the mat!
Kenji with a quick cover!
Allocca kicks out and quickly scrambles away from Kenji who is now motioning Allocca to come at him.
Allocca shakes his head ‘NO’, to which Kenji drops his head and runs full speed at Allocca, who spins out of the way, but once again, Kenji is ready, wrapping his arms around Allocca’s waist, rolling him backwards into a pin.
Allocca sends Kenji flying forward with the force of his kick out and he quickly regains his own footing, bouncing off the ropes and running at the prone Kenji who rolls over onto his back and lifts his feet, looking to return the favor to Allocca but Allocca cuts sharply to the left, hops up onto the second level of ring ropes, leaps into the air and drops a SICK looking fist drop from a 450-spin into the THROAT of Kenji Yamada who recoils immediately, clutching his Adam’s apple and struggling for breath.
Eryk Masters: That was the Metalfist! INTO HIS THROAT! What a move!
Other Guy: Yeah, but Allocca is keeping his distance still, he doesn’t want to get into a ground-and-pound situations with someone like Kenji Yamada!
Allocca makes a quick decision to hop onto the nearby ring post, and as he does, the fans roar in approval, which, in turn, alerts Kenji to the fact that his opponent is now flying above him!
As Allocca looks to hit a swanton bomb on the Project: SCAR member, Kenji makes a quick decision, rolls backwards and lifts his boot into the air as Allocca is descending…
Eryk Masters: Oh God! I think Allocca’s neck is broken!
Right before Kenji’s boot connects with Allocca’s face, Allocca sees it and tries to make a mid-air adjustment, which only serves to give Kenji’s response a bigger impact as Allocca’s chin connects squarely with the heel of Kenji’s boot and sends Allocca’s neck twisting in an unnatural direction before he collapses in a heap onto the mat – half of his body hanging limply toward the outside.
Even Kenji is surprise as he stands up and admires his handywork.
Other Guy: Did you hear that sound!? What was that?
Kenji smirks as he goes to reach down and pull up Allocca but before he can, Allocca falls out of the ring like a slinky.
Heflin rushes over to the side of the ring but Kenji is already hopped up on the ropes, looking down to see where Allocca’s body fell … ONLY TO FIND HIS HEAD HOOKED BY THE HANDS OF THE ANGEL OF VIOLENCE!
The roar of the crowd is deafening as Kenji’s arms flail wildly, trying to escape as Allocca kips back up onto the ring mat before dropping outside onto his knees and SNAPPING Kenji Yamada’s head and jaw backwards like the ropes were a slingshot.
Other Guy: Was Allocca playing possum?! I thought he was dead!
Eryk Masters: You and me both OG!
Kenji stirs, trying to get up but Allocca is already back in the ring and helps Kenji up instead. Kenji swings instinctively but Allocca pivots, hooks Kenji’s arms, and To ASHES!
Allocca bridges Kenji into a pin!
Eryk Masters: How in the world!? Allocca had Kenji dead to rights!
Allocca thinks so too as he stands up and begins to pester Heflin, signaling three but Heflin yells back, holding up two fingers, to which Allocca just throws his hands up in disgust. He looks down and Kenji is still struggling to get back onto his feet.
Allocca grabs a hold of Kenji’s hair and viciously slams the SCAR member’s head into the mat as the fans count along!
Heflin steps in and demands that Allocca stop, much to the consternation of the fans, but Allocca merely sidesteps Heflin, making a quick break for the ropes, pushing off and jumping up into the air for a leg drop but Kenji rolls out of the way and Allocca slams down hard on his tailbone!
Other Guy: OUCH!
Kenji grabs a hold of the ropes and looks FURIOUSLY at Allocca who is attempting to get back to his feet, hand on his back, but Kenji slams a boot into his shoulders that sends Allocca sprawling forward, sliding along the mat on his wrists.
Kenji screams at Allocca to stay down as he slams the heel of his boot into the base of Allocca’s neck, prompting a muffled scream of pain and cough from Allocca.
The Project: SCAR member grabs a hold of Allocca’s hair, quickly yanking him upwards before locking him in a stranglehold!
Allocca thrashes violently as Heflin rushes over to keep watch on Allocca’s vital signs. Kenji leans backward, leveraging as much weight as he can on Allocca’s neck while Heflin asks Allocca if he gives up, to which Allocca can only hiss out a “NO” while Kenji suffocates his airways.
In a desperation move, Kenji lifts his legs and locks them around Allocca’s waist, driving both men to the ground as Kenji locks in a rear naked choke hold!
Heflin falls to the mat as Allocca’s eyes begin to flutter shut. The fans begin to stomp their feet and clap for the Angel of Violence.
Fans: DON’T TAP OUT! DON’T TAP OUT! DON’T TAP OUT!
Eryk Masters: He might not tap out but Allocca runs the risk of losing all oxygen to his brain at this point!
Sure enough, Allocca’s shoulders sag and Heflin reaches over and raises Allocca’s hand, and lets it drop.
The fans cheer louder for Allocca as Heflin lifts his hand again, and it drops.
As Heflin goes to raise Allocca’s hand a third time, Kenji lets go of the hold and rolls away from the scene, leaving Allocca gasping for air on the mat.
Eryk Masters: Kenji may have just had this match won! What…
Other Guy: There’s your answer.
Kenji lifts Allocca’s body up and then swings the backside of his arm across his opponent’s face, dropping him back down to the mat as the fans begin to boo viciously.
Eryk Masters: Kenji is a sonofabitch! He just wants to HURT people out there. He doesn’t care about winning this thing at all!
Other Guy: Allocca knew that coming into this match Eryk! If it’s anyone’s fault it’s his, not Kenji’s.
Eryk Masters: You’re actually defending THIS!?
Kenji throws back his head and laughs, and once again misses Allocca clawing his way out of the ring.
Other Guy: I’ll give Allocca this, he’s pretty damned tactical.
Kenji looks down to see Allocca missing again and his expression immediately turns cold. He backsteps and rolls out of the opposite side of the ring, slowly walking back towards the side where Allocca sits in wait.
The fans roar, trying to warn Allocca, who has his hands grasped on… a STEEL CHAIR!
Eryk Masters: Don’t do it! Don’t sink to that bastard’s level!
Kenji smiles as he watches Allocca looks up and then back down to the chair before shaking his head and tossing the chair away, standing up looking to see what happened to Kenji.
Eryk Masters: LOOK OUT!
Allocca doesn’t turn around in time to avoid Kenji Yamada, who is running at full speed, hitting a HUGE spear which sends both men slamming into the steel steps and sending the steps a good five to ten feet away from their original position as both men are laid out on their backs.
Fans: That was Awe-some! * clap clap clap * That was Awe-some! * clap clap clap * That was Awe-some!
Other Guy: And look at the fans Eryk, PROVING Kenji right that they just want violence! They were just booing Kenji seconds ago and now they are cheering him for nearly killing Greg Allocca!
Meanwhile, Dennis Heflin has begun to count both men out.
Kenji is the first to get to his feet, but he’s still woozy while Greg Allocca hasn’t moved an inch.
Kenji once again picks up Greg Allocca and drives him head first into the ring mat!
The SCAR member lifts and pushes Allocca into the ring first before quickly rolling in after him as Heflin just barely gets to an eight count and as the fans begin to cheer and clap that the match can continue.
Kenji wipes some spit and blood out of his mouth and then flings it down onto Allocca’s back before driving a kick into Allocca’s face for good measure.
He lifts Allocca up by the neck and points to the crowd before dragging a thumb across his neck, dropping the arm in between Allocca and lifting him up!
Other Guy: EVERLASTING SCAR! IT’S OVER HERE!
Kenji lifts Allocca up and SLAMS him to the mat, HARD, wrapping a leg over his neck before pulling back and pinning Allocca’s shoulders to the mat!
Samantha Coil: “Your winner! At a time of 21 minutes and 4 seconds… KENJI YAMAAAADA!”
Heflin signals for the bell, but Kenji doesn’t release the pin. The fans boo relentlessly as Kenji actually tightens his hold, locking his legs around Allocca’s throat, trying once again to drain the life from his opponent!
Eryk Masters: Somebody STOP THIS!
The bell rings again and, as it does, all of the lights in the arena go dark.
Other Guy:Oh shit. Now look what you did.
The fans become restless, screaming and hollering as the darkness pervades for about 10 seconds, but then the darkness slowly lifts into a deep purple glow, covering the entire arena.
Eryk Masters: Dear God!
The fans scream in horror, rather than anger, as they see Kenji Yamada… hanging from a noose!
Eryk Masters: GET HIM DOWN! JESUS!
Other Guy: SECURITY! MEDICS! WE NEED SOMEONE DOWN HERE!
Dennis Heflin is flabbergasted as Kenji is being lifted off of his feet and pulled into the air!
Now a good five inches off the ground, Kenji is suddenly awake and frantic, trying to pull the noose of his neck before, suddenly, all of the slack in the rope gives and Kenji crashes down to the mat and just like that, the purple lights are gone and everything returns to normal…
…except for Kenji Yamada, who is panting and… screaming in the middle of the ring.
Not just screaming, Kenji is running around frantically, clawing at the noose around his neck, trying to get it off as Heflin watches, still in a stunned shock. The crowd, too, is deathly silent while watching the spectacle, as security and EMTs begin to rush the ring to check on the panicking Kenji Yamada, his screams clearly echoing throughout the arena.
The scene goes backstage, where we see Jason Johnson sitting behind a desk, sifting through a big stack of papers. He glances at the computer monitor in front of him, then back at the stack of papers. Jason picks up a pen from the desk and scribbles his signature on a couple of the documents.
Suddenly there is a knock at the door.
Before Jason can answer, the door swings open and the two massive identical twins known as Damage Control enter the room. They are dressed in their black suits, and are wearing their black sunglasses. Neither man speaks, but one looks at one side of the room, while the other checks out the other side.
From outside the office, we hear the voice of Dave Dymond.
“Is it safe? Any sign of Coleman?”
Clubber and Stomper both shake their heads silently. Dave Dymond strides into the room, beaming confidently. Jason Johnson looks at Dave Dymond and groans loudly. Jason shakes his head sadly and then puts his head on the desk.
“Dymond, I really don’t have time for your nonsense tonight. If you’re here about your medical insurance, I told you I’m not in charge of approving claims. Even if I was, I really don’t think you caught Typhoid Fever from the drinking fountain at the SHOOT Epicenter.”
Dave Dymond gets an insulted look on his face.
“Jason! How could you think I would ask you to interfere in any of my 13 lawsuits against your Medical Insurance company! My lawyers at the firm of Dewey, Screwem and Thensum are handling my insurance claims! That’s not even why I’m here!”
Jason Johnson looks up skeptically.
“Then what DO you want, Dymond? And make it quick. I don’t have time for your crap tonight.”
Dave Dymond keeps the hurt expression on his face.
“I’m just here because I am worried about my client, Akuma Satsui. The man has a living to make, and your incompetent and corrupt referees keep disqualifying him and counting him out! You and I both know that Buck Dresden is going to cheat tonight. I have it from a good source that he actually plans to try and smuggle the axle from his pickup truck into the arena, and use it as a weapon against Mr. Satsui! He might even bring his entire pickup truck to the ring!”
Jason Johnson does not look particularly concerned.
“Is that right.”
“Yes! So all I’m here to do is ask that this match be declared a No Disqualification Match, so my client is not judged unfairly should he have to defend himself from a violent assault by that illiterate hillbilly.”
“And I’m sure that it has nothing to do with you planning to interfere in the match, or have your two goons here do it for you.”
Dymond looks shocked – as if he had never even considered that.
“Why Jason, how could you…”
Jason Johnson cuts Dymond off and waves his hand in the air dismissively.
“Fine, no disqualifications, whatever! Just GET LOST and take your shaved apes with you!”
Dave Dymond smiles the least sincere smile possible, and bows.
“Thank you, Jason.” Dymond turns to Damage Control, who have been standing there silently, with no expression on their faces, and their arms crossed across their chests the entire time. “Clubber, Stomper – let’s go!”
The three men leave the office, closing the door behind them.
Jason Johnson shakes his head in disgust, and goes back to signing papers, but as he does so, we can hear him muttering under his breath.
“Whatever, Dymond. If Dresden does bring his pickup truck tonight, I hope he parks it on your head.”
The arena is dark, and a lone spotlight hits the middle of the ring, where Samantha Coil stands, holding the microphone. “Crucify Me” by Bring on the Horizon starts to play, and there is a loud reaction from the Brazilian fans, and it should be noted that many of them are females.
Samantha Coil: This match is scheduled for one fall with a 20 minute time limit! Introducing first, making his way to the ring, from Biloxi, Mississippi, weighing 227 pounds, this is CRAZY BOY!
The cheers are loud and long as the pumped up Crazy Boy charges down the aisle and vaults himself to the apron, then flips over the top rope and holds his arms over his head.
“Devil’s Dime” by Black Label Society booms over the Public Address system and the entire arena goes dark.
The Videotron turns on to reveal the popularized red and black devil with triangular goatee holding a human skull. The devil takes a deep breath, breathing fire on the skull and instantly the entrance way is engulfed with fire and bright red pyrotechnics shoot high into the arena at the edges of the ramp.
Eryk Masters: Seems like Cronos has finally invested in a flashier entrance than the normal red pyro.
Cronos emerges from the fire, having walked through it and saunters his way down to the ring sporting a new tattoo on his right shoulder; the very same devil once on the Videotron. Cronos’ demeanor prompts the entire arena to erupt with jeers and boos which only serves to force a smirk from the devil himself.
Samantha Coil: His opponent weighed in at 290 pounds and hails from The Bronx, this is CRONOS DIAMANTE!
As his name is announced, Cronos ascends the stairs, steps through the middle rope and takes a deep breath, soaking up the negativity, prompting the crowd to reign down an even heavier chorus of boos upon him. Cronos Diamante grins and stands in the middle of the ring, taunting the crowd some more as he awaits his opponent.
As if on cue, Crazy Boy charges at Cronos Diamante at full speed. At about three-quarters of the way across the ring, Crazy Boy launches himself into the air, and flies at Cronos, connecting with him, and driving him right back against the corner with a flying splash!
Cronos looks shocked at the attack from Crazy Boy. Crazy Boy starts to rain down huge punches to the head of Cronos Diamante, hammering him with lefts and rights as the fans cheer. Crazy Boy is swinging madly, peppering the head of Cronos with repeated shots from both of his hands. Cronos is rocked.
Finally, Crazy Boy backs up and folds Cronos up with a boot to the gut. The Crazy One steps back a few inches, reaches through and secures Cronos’ arm, and then heaves him over the top rope in a huge hip toss! The crowd erupts as Cronos sails over the top rope and lands flat on his back on the floor outside!
Eryk Masters: Crazy Boy came charging right out of the gate, and nailed Cronos with that running splash, and now he’s tossed him over the top rope!
The Other Guy: He did that because he’s scared shitless. He has already taken a beating from Cronos recently, and he saw what Cronos did to Mike Dexter last week. Crazy Boy is fighting like a crazy man because he’s motivated by plain old FEAR.
Crazy Boy quickly looks down, measures Cronos off, and then grabs the top rope, and slingshots himself over the top rope to the outside, nailing Cronos with a slingshot bodypress! The shocked fans cheer loudly at the sight of Crazy Boy flinging himself over the top rope and falling all the way to the floor outside on top of the stunned Cronos Diamante.
Crazy Boy gets up first, reaches down and pulls Cronos to his feet, and then runs with him, and fires him face first into the steel ring post! Cronos is propelled into the ring post and hits it hard. Cronos staggers backward, dazed. Crazy Boy wastes no time in grabbing Cronos by the back of the head again, and running full speed, propelling towards the ring steps!
The veteran, SHOOT Hall of Famer reverses!
Cronos propels Crazy Boy right into the steel ring steps! There is a loud crash as Crazy Boy collides roughly with the steps, and somersaults over, landing on his back on the other side. Austin Linam has been standing at the ropes ordering the two men to get back into the ring this whole time, and Cronos finally complies and rolls Crazy Boy back in.
Crazy Boy is still a bit dazed as Cronos pulls him into a sitting position in the middle of the ring. Cronos stands over Crazy Boy, grabs him by the back of the head with one hand, and with the other he starts to fire a rapid barrage of punches right into the face of Crazy Boy, over and over again. Crazy Boy is rocked by the hammer-like shots to the head.
Finally, The Legend stops punching, backs up and measures Crazy Boy off, and then boots Crazy Boy right in the face with the bottom of his boot! The Crazy One’s head snaps backward from the impact, and his whole body goes limp as he crumples flat on his back. The SHOOT Hall of Famer quickly makes the cover, and hooks the leg…
Right before the count of three, Crazy Boy lifts his shoulder from the mat, as the fans cheer the close call.
Eryk Masters: That was a close one!
The Other Guy: Cronos looks calm and focused. He’s being a bit violent, but he went for a pin there. That’s not good news for Crazy Boy. That means Cronos is thinking, and when this guy has a strategy, he is a dangerous man. When he’s focused, Cronos Diamante can beat anybody, believe it.
Crazy Boy shakes his head, trying to clear his thoughts. Cronos pounces on Crazy Boy, and pulls him to his feet. Cronos locks Crazy Boy up, and fires him quickly backwards with a suplex. Crazy Boy hits the mat at full speed, and bounces with the impact.
Cronos locks Crazy Boy up again, and pulls him to his feet. Cronos grabs Crazy Boy by the wrist, and throws him into the ropes. Crazy Boy comes off, and Cronos attempts a clothesline, but Crazy Boy ducks! Crazy Boy puts one hand on The SHOOT Hall of Famer’s shoulder and spins him around, and then starts firing rapid-fire right hand closed fist punches directly to the face of the man known as The Devil himself. The Legend’s head snaps back violently from the impact of the shots from Crazy Boy. Finally, Crazy Boy grabs one of Cronos’ flailing arms, and pulls him in quickly with a short clothesline. Cronos hits the mat.
Eryk Masters: The pendulum has swung again, and now Crazy Boy is back in control!
The Other Guy: Crazy Boy is fired up for this match, and he is doing a hell of a lot better than he did at the Pay Per View, but I keep looking at the face of Cronos. He’s not angry, he’s patient. He’s thinking. If I was Crazy Boy, I’d do whatever I had to do to get the win right away, because the more Cronos thinks, the worse it will be for Crazy Boy.
Crazy Boy circles around behind Cronos and crouches, waiting patiently, as Cronos slowly gets to his feet. In an incredible display of athleticism, Crazy Boy leaps into the air from a standing position, and locks his legs around the head and neck of Cronos in a reverse huracanrana! Crazy Boy then flips backward into a victory roll small package for a cover!
Cronos sharply kicks out, but barely in time. The fans are now on their feet cheering the incredible move they just witnessed from Crazy Boy, and the announcers show a replay on the monitors. Meanwhile Crazy Boy gets to his feet, comes off the ropes, does a somersault in the air, and then drops a leg across the chest of Cronos. Instead of covering, Crazy Boy applies a scissor lock on the arm of Cronos with his legs…and falls backwards while holding The Legend’s arm. Crazy Boy grimaces, and applies pressure by pulling down on Cronos’ arm, so his elbow is hyper extended across Crazy Boy’ body.
Eryk Masters: Armbar! This move applies incredible pressure to the arm and shoulder area!
The Other Guy: He’s got that locked on pretty good…
Cronos grits his teeth, and tries to pull free from the submission hold. Crazy Boy has the hold sunk in, and is applying full pressure. The fans are on their feet, cheering in suspense, wondering how long Cronos will be able to hold on in this submission maneuver.
Cronos looks to his left, and measures how close he is to the ropes. The SHOOT Hall of Famers digs his fingernails into the mat, with his free hand and starts to pull himself, inch by inch towards the ropes. Crazy Boy does his best to stay in place, but Cronos slowly drags the two men over to the ropes, inch by painful inch. Finally, Cronos reaches up, strains, and grabs the bottom rope. Linam orders Crazy Boy to break the hold.
Crazy Boy pulls The Legend to his feet, and he grabs Cronos by the back of the head, and runs towards the corner. Crazy Boy smashes Cronos Diamante’s head off the top turnbuckle, and then does it again. Crazy Boy starts to repeatedly ram his head into the turnbuckle over and over again, as the fans count along. When Crazy Boy reaches ten, he lets Cronos go, who collapses to the mat.
Eryk Masters: Crazy Boy is throwing everything but the kitchen sink at Cronos here, OG.
The Other Guy: Crazy Boy looks frustrated. He’s trying his hardest, and Cronos is staying alive. Did you see the expression on the face of Cronos while he was in that armbar? He didn’t look like he was in pain, he looked like he was playing chess and was planning his next move!
Cronos lays on the mat, Crazy Boy slowly climbs to the top rope, and then comes off with a flying fist drop into the head of the stunned Cronos Diamante. Crazy Boy makes the cover…
Cronos kicks out. Crazy Boy cusses in frustration, and then pulls Cronos to his feet. Cronos shocks Crazy Boy with a quick uppercut to the midsection, knocking the wind out of him. Crazy Boy doubles over, and Cronos hoists him into the air and drops him throat first across the top rope! Crazy Boy is repelled backward from the impact, and he hits the mat, flat on his back and choking and coughing.
Cover by Cronos!
Crazy Boy kicks out. Cronos starts to pick Crazy Boy up, but Crazy Boy reaches up, loops his hand around the neck of Cronos and rolls him up in a surprise small package pin attempt!
Cronos kicks out with all his might, breaking the small package up, as both men go sprawling. Crazy Boy and Cronos both get to their feet and the same time, and stumble towards each other. They lock up, and Cronos locks Crazy Boy up in a front face lock, and then twists him around and with a violent amount of torque, he snaps Crazy Boy to the mat with a neckbreaker!
Crazy Boy hits the mat and Cronos covers…
Cronos gets up, and quickly goes behind and slaps Crazy Boy in the full nelson! Crazy Boy is fighting for all his worth trying to find a counter. Cronos puts Crazy Boy back in the full nelson; he takes him backward with a Full Nelson Suplex, with most of the weight landing on the neck and head of Crazy Boy. Cronos performs a bridging cover…
Crazy Boy kicks out, and Cronos gets up and slowly climbs to the second turnbuckle, he measures the fallen Crazy Boy off, and leaps off with a fist drop – but Crazy Boy rolls out of the way and Cronos hits the mat like a ton of bricks.
Both men slowly get to their feet. Crazy Boy reaches out, and grabs Cronos by the wrist, whipping him into the ropes. Cronos rebounds off the ropes, and Crazy Boy leaps into the air, and nails The Legend right on the jaw with a picture perfect high dropkick!
Cronos collapses as the fans erupt at the sight of Crazy Boy hitting the highflying maneuver perfectly. Crazy Boy heads to the apron, and then leaps to the top rope, measuring Cronos Diamante off.
The fans are on their feet, expecting something big from Crazy Boy off the top rope. They are not disappointed, as Crazy Boy hurls his body into the air and executes a 450 Splash! Just as the body of Crazy Boy spirals towards the mat, Cronos lifts his boot into the air…
The jaw of Crazy Boy collides with the upraised boot of The Devil, and Crazy Boy’s head and neck snap backward in a sick looking contortion. The crowd groans in sympathy at seeing Crazy Boy collide with the boot of Cronos, all the way from the top rope. Crazy Boy falls to the mat next to The Legend, holding his neck in pain.
Cronos gets to his feet and takes stock of his situation, knowing he only has precious few seconds to take advantage. Cronos pulls the injured Crazy Boy to his feet and locks him up and the hoists him high into the air for a suplex!
The fans start to buzz, as Cronos just holds Crazy Boy high in the air, upside down, in suplex position. Suddenly, Cronos releases Crazy Boy, and walks away! Crazy Boy drops to the mat like a rock and lands right on the top of his head! The neck and head of Crazy Boy snap off to the side, and there is a loud gasp from the crowd.
Cronos looks down at Crazy Boy, and then calmly and casually makes the cover…
Austin Linam raises the arm of Cronos Diamante in victory, and his theme music starts to play. Cronos slowly gets to his feet and holds both his arms over his head. Crazy Boy rolls out of the ring, holding his neck and head. He does not look happy at all. As Crazy Boy heads up the aisle, The Devil stays in the ring, as Samantha Coil makes it official…
Samantha Coil: HERE IS YOUR WINNER: CRONOS DIAMANTE!!!
The announcers show a slow motion replay of Cronos dropping Crazy Boy right on top of his head, which sent The Crazy One’s neck twisting to an unnatural position.
Eryk Masters: Cronos Diamante does it again, fans! He gets a big and convincing win here tonight!
The Other Guy: What did I tell you, Masters? Crazy Boy got some good licks in, but once Cronos started working on the head and neck of the high flyer, it was basically all over. He was just relentless, focusing on that one idea, and he nearly crippled Crazy Boy in the process!
The shot goes back into the ring, and we see Cronos Diamante staring directly into the camera, not blinking. It is as if Cronos is staring directly into the eyes of the viewers, and after a moment, the intimidating shot fades.
The shot goes to the back to see Cade Sydal and Cassi Ryan, hand-in-hand, walking through the hall. The SHOOT Project World Title belt over Cade’s right shoulder, on the outside of the couple. His eyes continue to glance over his left shoulder, looking behind them.
Cassi Ryan: Relax, he won’t come looking for us down he–
Before Cassi can continue, she squeezes Cade’s hand and makes him look in front of them to see Ben Jackman round a corner, some twenty feet ahead of them, and go the other way. They quickly look to a door to their right and walk into it, closing it behind them before Jackman can turn around and spot them.
Cade Sydal: I’m no so crazy now, am I? He’s fucking everywhere!
Tanya Black: I’m sorry. Can I help you?
The shot pans out a little more to see that the room the couple have barged into to make their escape is Tanya Black’s locker room, where the former Sin City Champion is stretching in preparation for her match.
Cassi Ryan: No, in three minutes we’ll be out of your hair.
Tanya takes a moment to stretch her arms and shoulders until they are nice and limber before looking up at the couple.
Tanya Black: First of all Miss, if you were ever in my hair you’d know it because I’d extract you violently. I’m not very keen on folks barging into my locker room without an invitation especially right before a match. However, out of respect for the fact that Mr. Sydal is not just our World Champion, which I have yet to do i n my career, but has also successfully defended his title you will have your three minutes of hide and seek.
Her face clouding up with a mixture of annoyance and rage Cassi starts to open her mouth to respond, but Cade quickly puts his hand up, waving it before Cassi can even finish forming a word quickly dissolving a potential situation as Tanya shoots Cassi a nasty glare in kind.
Cade Sydal: Actually, you shouldn’t have asked if you can help me but…can I help you. You’ve got a lot of promise, you’re just…not living up to your potential.
Adjusting her weight Tanya begins sliding down into a split eventually getting all the way down to the ground. Her eyes never leave Cade, suspicion obvious on her face.
Tanya Black: Potential? Heh, be fair Cade. I’ve only been in like, what, four matches in SHOOT? I’m two-and-two. From what I’ve heard from the road agents that’s a decent record. If it weren’t for some front office shenanigans I’d have also regained my belt.
Tanya turns her body and starts to stretch toward her right foot.
Tanya Black: But they like to stall me by insisting I finish my side business with the Gunslingers first. Its either that or actually take nights off, like I’m some other lazy female around here. Hell, if the front office had simply doe what U asked and respected my status as champion, Laura wouldn’t be running around as a false prophet with MY Sin City Championship!
Standing up Tanya walks over to Cade and shows no fear of the top ranked wrestler in SHOOT by staring him directly in the eyes without blinking. Cade smirks comfortably in her face.
Tanya Black: So unless you’re talking about teaching me how to turn the office into a bunch of wish granting genies without some seedy shit like the Heirarchy, cheating, or even worse being within smelling range of Dave Dymond?
Tanya scrunches up her nose, as if to make her point.
Tanya Black: I don’t think there’s anything you can do to help me and my potential. I earn my glory by rising above the petty games of people like Jester Smiles, as you’ve already seen. Now show me the Ace in your hand, or again — and I do mean this respectfully — take the Joker in your sleeve and leave.
Cade’s smirk slowly grows to a grin.
Cade Sydal: You worry about the wrong things. I could help you in ways you couldn’t even begin to imagine.
Cassi pulls on Cade’s arm.
Cassi Ryan: We should get going…
Cade Sydal: In just a moment. First, some words of advice for our…gracious host. Everything I’ve ever wanted, I reached out for and I took it. If you ever want to touch the belt on my shoulder? Maybe you’ll learn to do the same…if you want your precious title back, go and get it. It’s as simple as that.
Cade turns to the door and turns the knob. He slowly pulls it open and peeks out. He turns to look over his shoulder again, smirking to Tanya.
Cade Sydal: You should take my advice with a lot more than a grain of salt. Unless, of course, you’re afraid of greatness.
He winks before stepping out into the hallway and pulling Cassi Ryan behind him, but not before she can shoot Tanya Black her own narrow-eyed glare.
The camera shifts to the back where we see Mary Kelly standing in front of the SHOOT Project Helmet. Behind her we see Charles Brandon Magnus pacing with his SHOOT Project World Tag Team Championship belt on his shoulder.
Mary Kelly: Ladies and gentlemen, I am back here tonight with one half of the World Tag Team Champions. He is a member of the Bad Ass Brotherhood. Ladies and gentlemen…Charles Brandon Magnus.
Magnus barely acknowledges the camera.
Mary Kelly: Now, Mr. Magnus. Tonight you’ve been banned from ringside to help your partner Buck Dresden against the monster Akuma Satsui. And it’s not so much that you were banned…but Buck asked you to stay back. How does that make you feel?
Charles Brandon Magnus: How do you think I feel, Mary? Buck tells me he wants me and Jonas to sit this one out and watch from the back while he goes into the belly of the damned beast itself!
Magnus shakes his head.
Charles Brandon Magnus: I love my brother, I do. But he’s lost his damned mind if he doesn’t think these psychos don’t have a plan to make his life hell. To top it all off, what would happen if those fools in Frontline don’t come after him? Or me?
Charles Brandon Magnus: We stay…UNITED. If Dave Dymond or his monsters want us, we need to be together. If Frontline II TURBO wanna take a pot shot at us, what’s to stop them? Me? Jonas? We’re gonna do what we have to…we’re gonna do what Buck asks…but Dave? Dave, I hope you’re watching me.
Magnus glares at the camera.
Charles Brandon Magnus: Regardless of your feelings towards me…or to Jonas or to Buck. If you harm him to prove some kind of damned point…we will do all we can to take you down. Do you understand me? We are the Bad Ass Brotherhood and by God, Dave Dymond…we do NOT run alone.
He storms off, leaving Mary Kelly alone.
Samantha Coil: Ladies and Gentlemen, this next match is scheduled for one fall, with a 30 minute time limit!
“Brotherhood of Man” by Motörhead starts to play, and there is an loud surge of jeering that rises from all over the arena. Both members of Damage Control step into the aisle, and look around, before stepping aside. Dave Dymond appears between them, and he starts to walk down the aisle toward the ring, with Clubber and Stomper flanking him on either side.
Behind Dymond and his bodyguards, we see Akuma Satsui. He has a crimson colored towel draped over his head, and he is shirtless, with dark blue karate-style gi pants, and a crimson sash around his waist. We cannot see his face due to the towel over his head, but we can see that he has a sharpened wooden stick clenched between his teeth.
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, being led to the ring by his manager, Dave Dymond! Hailing from Japan, he weighs in at 350 pounds, this is Poison Spike from the Pacific Rim, the Terror of Tokyo, the Narita Nightmare: AKUMA SATSUI!
Dave Dymond and his entourage make their way to the ring as the music continues to pound over the sound system. As they pass, the fans hurl garbage, most of it at Dave Dymond. The group reaches the ringside area, and Damage Control remain on either side of Dave Dymond, who takes up his position in Satsui’s corner. Satsui tosses the towel down, and takes a sumo style stance in the ring.
Akuma Satsui’s music fades and is replaced by “Indian Outlaw” by Tim McGraw. The boos for Dymond and Satsui are replaced with enthusiastic cheers. Buck Dresden appears at the top of the ramp, decked out in his usual ensemble of jeans, chaps, a vest and cowboy hat. He also has one of the SHOOT Project World Tag Team Championship title belts slung over one shoulder, and a length of bullrope, complete with a large steel cowbell at the end, hanging over the other shoulder.
Samantha Coil: His opponent hails from Hazard, Kentucky, USA and weighs 230 pounds. He represents the BAD ASS BROTHERHOOD, and is currently one half of the SHOOT Project World Tag Team Champions, this is: BUCK DRESDEN!
Buck Dresden marches towards the ring, slapping high fives enthusiastically with the fans as he makes his way to the ring. Dresden makes a full circuit around the ring, high fiving the fans as he does so. When he reaches the time keeper’s table he lays his belt down, and then climbs the steps into the ring. Buck Dresden points at Satsui, then hangs his bullrope over the ringpost in his corner. His music dies down.
Eryk Masters: This should be interesting, OG. We’ve got one of Jonas Coleman’s best friends taking on Coleman’s arch enemy, a man that dealt Dave Dymond’s Empire a serious loss last week, in Buck Dresden.
The Other Guy: Yeah, and if you don’t think Dave Dymond is stewing over that loss, you’re kidding yourself. He wants revenge, and now he’s in a position to get it.
Buck Dresden throws his hat over the top rope to the ring attendant, and the bell rings. Dresden makes the “longhorns” hand signal to the fans, and then he gets ready for action. Dresden falls back into the ropes and comes off with a shoulderblock. He runs into Akuma Satsui, who stands his ground firmly. Dresden stumbles backward from the impact, but he doesn’t go down. He jogs across the ring, comes off the far rope, rebounds and comes at Satsui again.
Akuma Satsui turns around, and aims a high savate style kick at the head of Dresden. Buck Dresden ducks and keeps going. Dresden comes off the far ropes, and now he has tons of momentum on his side. He leaps into the air, and smashes Akuma Satsui right into the face with a flying shoulder tackle! The fans roar in appreciation.
Akuma Satsui careens backward, his arms comically flailing in the air, but he does not go down! Satsui falls back into the ropes, and then grabs them to steady himself. Buck Dresden looks at Satsui in shock. Satsui smiles, and calls Dresden on. Dresden shakes his head, and steps forward, firing a huge overhand punch at Akuma Satsui. The punch lands perfectly, hitting Satsui right between the eyes. Satsui staggers backward, but then answers with a blistering knife-edge chop, right across the torso of Buck Dresden.
Eryk Masters: Buck Dresden holding his own against a man who outweighs him by almost 100 pounds, but now things are starting to get a bit more violent.
The Other Guy: Satsui doesn’t know how to do anything without violence, Masters. I hear he stabbed his own Granny just for fun, at the last Satsui family Thanksgiving Dinner.
Just like we have seen so many times with Jonas Coleman, Akuma Satsui and Buck Dresden start to brawl wildly, back and forth. Dresden is throwing wild overhand shots which are landing squarely on the head of Satsui, who is answering back with wicked chops, slapping the chest of Dresden. The two men stand toe-to-toe in the middle of the ring, slugging and chopping each other back and forth. The fans are eating it up and they come to their feet in unison, cheering their hearts out.
Finally, Buck Dresden dodges a chop from Satsui, lifts one of his feet up, and rams the heel of his cowboy boot down on the bare foot of Akuma Satsui. Satsui bellows in pain, and falls to the mat! Buck Dresden starts kicking and stomping the prone Satsui, as the fans cheer their approval.
Akuma Satsui rolls onto his back, rears back with one of his legs, and drives the flat of his foot into the left knee of Buck Dresden! Dresden shouts in pain and surprise, and he collapses to the mat, not far from Akuma Satsui. Satsui slowly gets up, takes aim, and leaps into the air, landing an elbow smash across the torso of Buck Dresden.
Buck Dresden absorbs all 350 pounds of Akuma Satsui’s impact across his chest, and he shakes from the impact. Satsui stays on top of Dresden for the cover…
Buck Dresden kicks out with authority.
Eryk Masters: Satsui throws that elbow smash like a meat cleaver.
The Other Guy: Maybe so, but it wasn’t enough to keep Dresden down. Not even close.
Akuma Satsui gets up, grabs Dresden by the hair and yanks him back to his feet. As he does so, Dresden fires a kneelift into the gut of Satsui, knocking the wind out of him. Satsui doubles over. Buck Dresden stands up straight and starts to smash his elbow over the back of the head of Akuma Satsui, over and over again. This time, Akuma Satsui goes down and he falls to his knees, overwhelmed.
The fans erupt at the sight of the pummeling that Dresden is putting on Satsui, and once again Dresden gives fans the longhorns hand signal, before he grabs Akuma Satsui by the back of the head, and pulls him to his feet. Buck Dresden grabs Akuma Satsui by the wrist and whips him into the ropes. Akuma Satsui rebounds across the ring, and Buck Dresden plants himself dead center, and throws a vicious looking lariat clothesline.
Akuma Satsui keeps going, and comes off the far ropes. Buck Dresden whirls around, and faces Satsui, but not in time to get his defenses up, and Satsui hits him with a full bodyblock, sending the cowboy staggering back first into the ropes. Akuma Satsui charges again, but Buck Dresden ducks down, and back bodydrops Akuma Satsui over the top rope!
Eryk Masters: HOLY CRAP! That’s a lot of weight flying over the top rope!
The Other Guy: Yeah let’s see that one again! Dresden tossed Satsui over the top rope like a bag of garbage!
Akuma Satsui lands unceremoniously in a heap outside the ring, as the crowd goes nuts at the sight of Dresden tossing 350 pounds over his shoulders like nothing. Incredibly, Akuma Satsui gets back to his feet at lightning speed, and he reaches into the ring, and grabs Buck Dresden by the ankles, and pulls.
Buck Dresden collapses in the ring, and Akuma Satsui pulls him outside by the legs, with an evil look in his eye. As soon as Dresden hits the ground, Akuma Satsui throws a headlock on him. Akuma Satsui steadies himself, keeping the big headlock on Buck Dresden.
With his free hand, Akuma Satsui reaches into the folds of his karate pants, and emerges with one of his famous sharpened wooden sticks – what he calls his “Kagyaku Sticks.” Satsui brandishes the stick like a knife, and starts to repeatedly jab it into the top of Buck Dresden’s head!
Eryk Masters: I thought Satsui might be reeling from getting dumped over the top rope like that, but he’s back on the attack already.
The Other Guy: Yeah, and now he’s using Dresden’s head as a pincushion.
The fans are incensed. The men are jeering and hurling verbal abuse and some trash at Satsui, while audible screams can be heard from the female contingent in the crowd. Buck Dresden is struggling, but he is having a hard time escaping the headlock of his huge opponent. Satsui is laughing manically as he continues to stab the head of Buck Dresden.
Buck Dresden plants both his feet into the ground solidly, and then places both his hands on the back of Akuma Satsui, and shoves as hard as he can. Satsui is hurled forward, head first, straight for the steel ringpost! Akuma Satsui’s skulls cracks into the post loudly, and he falls to his knees, knocked for a loop. The fans cheer in relief.
Buck Dresden falls to his knees. He has been busted open on the top of his head, and blood is dripping down his forehead into his face. We can see that Akuma Satsui has been busted open as well, where his heavily scarred forehead smacked into the post. Both competitors are on their knees, bleeding outside the ring, while the referee looks over the top rope helpless.
The shot switches over to the opposite side of the ring, where we see Dave Dymond standing in between Damage Control. Dymond has his hands on the shoulders of Clubber and Stomper, and he is talking a mile a minute. Both men are nodding. Finally, Damage Control walk away from Dave Dymond, and jog up the aisle toward the back!
Eryk Masters: What the hell is this now? Where are those two goons going in the middle of the match?
The Other Guy: I have no idea, but I can bet it’s nowhere good for The Bad Ass Brotherhood.
Dave Dymond is now alone at ringside. He reaches under the ring, and pulls out a paper bag and some sort of object. Dymond pulls a pair of black sunglasses out of the bag and puts them on. There is also a one of those “Hello My Name Is” stickers, and Dymond places the sticker on his chest. The sticker reads “Hello My Name Is JONAS COLEMAN.” Dymond pulls the other item up. It is a white cane, the kind that blind individuals use.
As the fans go absolutely berserk, Dave Dymond comically stumbles up the steps into the ring and staggers around, pantomiming as if he is blind. Dymond is waving the white cane everywhere, and reaching out with his free hand as if he is trying to feel his way around. Dave Dymond starts to poke and prod the referee with the cane.
Eryk Masters: This guy is one sick son of a bitch. He’s mocking Jonas Coleman, making fun of the fact that Coleman was blinded – when Akuma Satsui is the one who blinded him!
The Other Guy: This is pretty much the textbook definition of “adding insult to injury.” Masters. Satsui and Dymond blind the guy, and now they mock him. Dave Dymond has spent the past four months making Jonas Coleman’s life a living hell.
Outside the ring, Akuma Satsui is shaking his head, trying to clear the cobwebs. It is obvious he was knocked for a loop when his head hit the steel post. Buck Dresden looks into the ring, and sees Dave Dymond stumbling around, pretending he is a blind man. Dresden shouts something very loud – but thankfully unintelligible, since it was most likely cursing. Buck Dresden slides into the ring, and charges at Dave Dymond. Dresden has murder in his eyes.
Dave Dymond sees Buck Dresden charging at him and shrieks in fear. Dymond scurries out of the ring on the other side, but Buck Dresden is hot on his trail and is still charging after him. The ringside microphones have no problem picking up the sound of Dave Dymond screaming in terror, as he runs around the ring, trying to get away from Buck Dresden.
Dymond makes a sharp turn around one of the ring posts, and Dresden follows. As soon as Dresden comes around the corner, he is met by a savate kick to the jaw from Akuma Satsui, and he goes down like a ton of bricks! Dave Dymond keeps running, until he is safely away from Buck Dresden on the far side of the ring.
Eryk Masters: Buck Dresden just fell victim to one of the oldest tricks in the book, unfortunately.
The Other Guy: Yeah for sure. Dymond led him right into a trap, but you can’t blame Dresden for that. He saw Dave Dymond mocking one of his best friends, and he went after him. He wasn’t even thinking that Satsui would be waiting for him around the corner, he just wanted to get his hands on Dave Dymond.
Akuma Satsui rolls Buck Dresden back into the ring, and follows him in. Satsui pulls another sharpened wooden stick out of his pocket, and falls on Dresden, and starts stabbing him in the forehead again. Referee Austin Linam tries to grab Satsui’s arm, but Satsui ignores him.
Dave Dymond rolls into the ring, and he is brandishing a steel chair. With one swing, he brings the chair down over the skull of the referee, Austin Linam! The fans boo loudly and Linam crumples to the mat. Mark Kendrick rings the bell, since attacking the referee is the only guaranteed disqualification in SHOOT.
Satsui drops his Kagyaku stick, and slaps a rear chinlock on Buck Dresden, who is now bleeding even more profusely from his forehead. Dave Dymond reaches into the pocket of his jacket and produces a pair of handcuffs! As the fans continue to shower Dymond and Satsui with abuse, Satsui drags Dresden over to the corner and Dymond handcuffs him to the bottom rope!
Eryk Masters: This is bad, OG. This is really bad.
The Other Guy: I am betting we’re going to see Magnus, and maybe even Coleman at any second now. They’re not going to sit there and let Dymond and Satsui work their teammate – a guy they call their brother – over, and not do a damn thing about it.
The shot changes to the backstage area.
We see both members of Damage Control, Clubber and Stomper. They are standing on either side of a dressing room door.
The door is labeled “BAD-ASS BROTHERHOOD.”
Suddenly, the door flies outward, and we see Jonas Coleman, The Butcher. He doesn’t look well, he looks beat up and tired, and his forehead is bandaged. He still has the cast on his hand, and the skin around his eyes is red and mottled – but Coleman runs straight ahead, toward the entrance ramp.
Coleman runs so fast out of his dressing room, he doesn’t even see Damage Control crouching on either side of his door. Damage Control lets The Butcher go, but as soon as he is gone, we see the shadow of Charles Brandon Magnus in the doorway.
Damage Control leap into action, and slam the door shut!
As soon as one of them has the door shut, the other one grabs a steel chair and wedges it under the door handle. He disappears for a second, and then comes back into the shot, pushing a garbage dumpster, on wheels! The member of Damage Control (we can’t tell which one it is) pushes the huge dumpster in front of the Bad Ass Brotherhood dressing room door, blocking it!
The other member of Damage Control exits the shot for a moment, and then appears again, holding a huge steel ballpeen hammer. As one man holds the dumpster in place, the other one smashes the wheels of the dumpster, right off with the hammer!
Eryk Masters: Oh SHIT! Damage Control were waiting there! This is a SET UP! They waited for Coleman to head to the ring, and they have barricaded Charles Brandon Magnus in his dressing room!
The Other Guy: With those goons knocking those wheels off the dumpster, it’s going to take at least five or six guys to move that damn thing, Masters.
We can hear Magnus cussing and yelling, pounding at the blocked door. The door does not budge, as the massive dumpster is blocking the door and it isn’t moving now that the wheels are gone.
Damage Control look at each other and nod. They dust off their black suits, and start to jog towards the entrance ramp.
We switch back to the live shot in the arena.
Akuma Satsui and Dave Dymond are taking turns stomping, kicking and mocking the handcuffed Buck Dresden. Dresden is bleeding buckets, and bravely swinging his free arm, trying so hard to get a shot in, but Dymond and Satsui are out of his reach.
Suddenly, the fans go CRAZY!
We can see Jonas Coleman charging down the aisle at full speed! Coleman is almost a blur as he slides into the ring, and grabs the white “blind man’s” cane from the mat. The Butcher leaps into the air and brings the cane down over the head of Akuma Satsui!
The sound echoes throughout the whole arena, and Akuma Satsui falls into a heap. Jonas Coleman holds the cane over his head.
It is broken!
Eryk Masters: YES! THE BUTCHER IS HERE!
The Other Guy: Hahaha! He just busted that cane right over Satsui’s big fat melon head!
As the fans come unglued, The Butcher turns to Dave Dymond, and points straight at him. Dymond shakes his head and screams. Jonas Coleman has a look of pure murderous rage on his face, as he advances on Dave Dymond, brandishing the broken cane. Coleman is pointing at his eyes and shouting at Dave Dymond. We can’t hear what Coleman is saying, but it’s obvious he’s pissed.
Suddenly, the fans shout out as Damage Control reach the ring, slide under the bottom rope, and simultaneously tackle Jonas Coleman to the mat! The cheers that were erupting from the fans turn to deafening boos. Damage Control get to their feet and start to stomp away at Jonas Coleman.
Clubber and Stomper are both well over 6 feet tall and around 250 pounds each, so The Butcher is basically being methodically stomped into the mat by 500 pounds. Coleman is trying to fend off the attack, but before he can do anything, Dave Dymond joins the fray and starts stomping on Coleman too. Akuma Satsui gets back up, and he joins the attack!
Dave Dymond, Akuma Satsui, Clubber and Stomper are all laying the boots to a defenseless Jonas Coleman, 4 on 1. Charles Brandon Magnus is trapped in the dressing room, and Buck Dresden is busted open and handcuffed to the rope. Even though he is soaked in blood, Dresden is weakly trying to reach over and help The Butcher, but he is not even close.
Eryk Masters: This is sick. Four men, basically swarming Jonas Coleman – who is already badly injured. This is nothing more than a mugging. SOMEBODY STOP THIS! Can we get some security out here? More referees? ANYBODY? Somebody get Magnus out of that dressing room!
The Other Guy: I hate to say this, but I have to give it to Dymond. He planned this. He sent Damage Control backstage to trap Magnus. He lured Coleman out, and now he and his troops are basically beating The Butcher half to death.
It is not a pretty sight.
Garbage and debris is being hurled at the ring, and the ground is practically shaking from the boos and jeers, as the four men continue to kick and stomp on The Butcher Jonas Coleman. Jonas looks totally out of it, as the men brutally lay the boots to him.
The arena lights go out.
Eryk Masters: What the hell?
The Other Guy: Maybe they killed the lights to try and break this up, I don’t know…
“How I Could Just Kill A Man” by Rage Against The Machine starts to blast out of the speakers in the arena.
The tension is so thick, you could cut it with a knife.
One word appears on the huge Videotron in the arena, illuminating the entire arena.
The fans go nuts, as pyro goes off.
The lights go back up, and we see in the ring, Dave Dymond, Akuma Satsui and Damage Control are looking around wildly.
They don’t have to look far.
Standing on the top rope, brandishing a steel chair is none other than…
The fans are going absolutely bananas, as Diego leaps HIGH into the air from the top rope, and comes down, smashing the chair right over the head of Akuma Satsui! Reyes has hit him so hard that the chair actually bends!
Dave Dymond screams and flees the ring, leaving Damage Control in the ring with Diego Reyes. Reyes kips up, and leaps into the air, locking one of the members of Damage Control around the neck, and then spiking him right down into the mat with a huracanrana! Reyes kips up again, and faces the other member of Damage Control with a look of rage on his face.
Outside the ring, Dave Dymond is having a conniption, jumping up and down, screaming and shouting, and pounding his fists on the apron. The remaining member of Damage Control takes a wild swing at Reyes, but Diego ducks it easily, and smashes the bigger man with a sidekick, right in the gut.
Eryk Masters: DIEGO REYES IS BACK! The other member of Perdition is here, and he’s cleaning house! Listen to this crowd!
The Other Guy: He’s back and he caught Dymond totally off guard! You can tell Dymond thought he had this whole plan worked out, he planned for Dresden, Magnus and Coleman, but he never figured on Diego Reyes!
Suddenly the crowd gets even louder! Buck Dresden has struggled back to his feet and with an insane swing of his arm, he BREAKS the chain holding his arm to the ropes! Dresden grabs his bullrope from his corner and screams in rage, as he swings the rope over his head.
Diego Reyes goes to one knee to check on Jonas Coleman, and now both members of Damage Control are left to deal with one VERY pissed off cowboy! Both twins have struggled back to their feet, when Dresden attacks!
Buck Dresden swings the huge coil of rope downward, and the massive steel bell at the end connects with the skull of one of the members of Damage Control, who is knocked down and out! Dresden pulls the rope back towards himself, and then hurls it back towards the other member of Damage Control.
The rope lashes around the neck of the bodyguard, and he starts to struggle and turn purple in the face. Dresden gives the rope a huge yank and sends the big man to the mat. Buck yanks the rope free, swings it over his head again, and brings it down, lashing both members of Damage Control.
Eryk Masters: That has to HURT! You know how much bullrope weighs? And that rope has a huge steel bell at the end, and Dresden is whipping Damage Control with it!
The Other Guy: Look at Dymond! He’s had enough! He’s screaming at Satsui and Damage Control to retreat!
Dave Dymond is leaning under the rope, bellowing at his troops. Both members of Damage Control roll out of the ring on the far side – looking MUCH worse for wear, thanks to Buck Dresden. Akuma Satsui is still half conscious thanks to the chairshot from the top rope by Diego Reyes, but he blearily rolls out of the ring as well.
Dave Dymond marshals Satsui and Damage Control in one spot, and orders them up the aisle. The group looks beaten and defeated, and Dave Dymond turns back towards the ring, points at Dresden and Reyes and screams something unintelligible.
Rage Against The Machine is still playing as Samantha Coil grabs the microphone outside the ring…
Samantha Coil: LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, REFEREE AUSTIN LIMAN HAS DISQUALIFIED AKUMA SATSUI DUE TO OUTSIDE INTERFERENCE…YOUR WINNER OF THE MATCH…BUCK DRESDEN!!!
Dresden makes the longhorns symbol again to the fans, as Diego Reyes helps Jonas Coleman to his feet. Coleman finally gathers his wits about him, and opens his eyes. As soon as he sees Diego Reyes standing in front of him, he looks thunderstruck. Coleman and Reyes embrace and then hold each other’s arms in the air, as Buck Dresden stands off to one side and applauds.
At the top of the ramp, Akuma Satsui and Damage Control disappear into the back. Dave Dymond looks towards the ring one last time, screams something out, points at Coleman and Reyes and then pulls his thumb across his throat in the “throat cutting” gesture. Dymond disappears into the back, as the camera shot goes back to Perdition, reunited in the middle of the ring.
Cronos Diamante and Keichi Kawada sit at a table backstage drinking a celebratory shot of Sake. The win over Crazy Boy was expected but it marks a new chapter for Cronos.
Keichi Kawada: Now what?
Cronos looks at Keichi quizzically.
Cronos Diamante: Now what, what? We’re enjoying Sake at your request and celebrating. This was your idea, you know? Was there something else you wanted to do?
Keichi Kawada: I shall rephrase. Now who?
Cronos Diamante: Always business with you, isn’t it? Even when it’s sitting down to celebrate. And we can’t even celebrate without those four hired Yakuza goons over there following us around. Can’t we just sit here in peace and enjoy the victory? Smell the roses and shit.
Keichi Kawada: You’ve been on quite a roll. It was a pretty good win out there.
Cronos cockily nods his head.
Cronos Diamante: It was, wasn’t it? It’s only three wins though. When I see five or ten wins, I’ll get excited.
Keichi Kawada: So let’s go get that fourth victory. Who’s next on the list?
Cronos chuckles and looks over at Keichi then pats him on the head.
Cronos Diamante: Something will come along, Keichi. Patience, grasshoppa.
Just then Rule of Surrender Champion, Alex Brooks walks past Cronos and Keichi. Cronos winks at Keichi and holds up two fingers then makes a waving motion forward and two Yakuza goons hop to and block Alex’s path.
Alex Brooks: Excuse me, can I get through?
The younger of the two Yakuza looks Alex up and down and speaks something in Japanese obviously making fun of his ring attire. He points at the black tights and makes a flip of the hand gesture that is often seen from gay men. Brooks, oblivious to the insult tries to step around the Yakuza, but they move to keep his path blocked.
Alex Brooks: Guys, can I please get through, my locker room is just over there.
Alex points to the door less than one hundred meters behind the Yakuza. The older of the two, having not taken his eyes off Cronos from under his dark sunglasses nods his head and slips the Rule of Surrender Championship off Alex’s shoulder and tosses it at Cronos’ feet. As Alex turns around he is kicked in the gut, the younger Yakuza making the first strike. They back off a moment to allow Brooks to "get in the fight" so to speak. Alex stands up holding his midsection.
Alex Brooks: Guys, I don’t want to fight you.
Alex turns around, takes a step away from the goons and bends down to pick up the Rule of Surrender Championship belt off the floor in front Cronos.
Cronos Diamante: Behind you.
The younger Yakuza kicks at Brooks again but he ducks it this time and fires back, driving his shoulder into the midsection to double him over. Brooks then hits him with a knee into the face of the Yakuza sending him down to the ground. With him down, the older of the two charges at him and connects with a kick to Alex’s already hurting midsection. Alex goes down to one knee but rolls forward, taking the brunt of a punch away from his jaw and to his knee. The young guy is back up and both are on him. Brooks is covering his head from the blows being dealt to him. The two Yakuza pause for a small moment to insult their victim in Japanese and taunt him for covering up and not fighting back. Brooks seizes this opportunity to lash out with his fists blindly. He connects right on the point of the jaw of the older of the two men, knocking him backwards. This freezes the younger of the two, who falls victim to a vicious kick to the knee from Brooks. Brooks gets to his feet just in time to catch the older Yakuza charging at him. Thinking quickly he hits the running man with an elbow stopping him cold in his tracks. The younger of the two men attacks again, but his slight limp gives Brooks more than enough time to slam him into the nearby wall. Brooks looks at the two Yakuza writhing on the floor.
Alex Brooks: I told you I didn’t want to fight.
Brooks starts looking around the hallway for his Rule of Surrender Championship belt but doesn’t find it. Instead he averts his eyes to Cronos who is holding it in his right hand and now standing. He takes a step toward Alex, smiling.
Cronos Diamante: I apologize about that Mr. Brooks. They’ve been away from Japan for a long time. It tends to get to them. They get rowdy and want to brawl.
Cronos jerks his head to the right and Keichi sweeps past Alex to his fallen men.
Cronos Diamante: Is there anything I can do to make up for this indiscretion?
Alex Brooks: It’s ok, Mr. Diamante. If I could just have my title back, I’ll just be on my way. I hope your friends will be alright, but I did tell them that I didn’t want to fight.
Cronos nods his head.
Cronos Diamante: Of course.
Cronos hands Alex his Championship belt and pats him on the shoulder.
Cronos Diamante: My apologies again, Mr. Brooks. Have a good night.
Alex Brooks: That’s ok, Mr. Diamante. Thank you for my title back.
Alex turns his back and begins to walk away. He makes it two steps before he’s tripped and lands face first on the title he was carrying in his hands. Brooks quickly pushes himself up and spins around only to eat a vicious right kick from Cronos, the momentum of which sends him into a nearby Pepsi machine. Cronos having no mercy punches Alex in the throat as he rolls onto his back. With Alex gripping his throat and gasping for air, Cronos picks up the Rule of Surrender Championship and has a gander.
Cronos Diamante: Never turn your back on the devil, Mr. Brooks. I think I’ll be keeping this.
Cronos throws the title over his shoulder and kicks Alex in the temple, forcing him back into the Pepsi machine and effectively knocking him out.
Cronos Diamante: I told you something would come along, Keichi.
The shot goes to the back, just as Ben Jackman walks through the halls. Given the large boxes of production equipment lining the walls, it is likely safe to say he’s near the gorilla position as he keeps up his casual pace.
Other Guy: Look at him, just pacing the hallways all night looking for Cade!
Eryk Masters: And he’s not in a hurry either, he knows Cade’s here already and he knows he’ll find him again.
As Jackman continues his casual stroll, a door cracks open about a dozen feet ahead of him.
Cassi Ryan: Shhhh, I think he’s close.
The door slowly opens a little more, opening away from Jackman though he can recognize the voice hidden by the door and grins.
Cade Sydal: Well I don’t see him. I say we haul ass and go.
Cassi nods her head in agreement and pushes the door open the rest of the way, turning to head down the hall. The same direction that Ben Jackman is standing in. Her eyes open wide, as his grin grows larger. Cade is right behind her, and runs into her back before he looks into the eyes of Ben Jackman.
Ben Jackman: This has been a fun night.
Jackman starts to stalk toward the couple, who both begin to nervously back up.
Cade Sydal: Look, can’t we just talk about this?
Cassi Ryan: Yeah, you’re both reasonable men an–
Ben Jackman: Can it. The time for talk is over.
With those words Jackman explodes into motion, and Cade immediately turns and starts running the other way, pulling Cassi behind him by the hand!
Eryk Masters: He’s running from him!
Other Guy: Do you blame him?!
Jackman laughs as he gives chase, following the couple through the nearby gorilla position.
Ben Jackman: You can run and hide all night, but that’s not going to stop this from happening…
Jackman follows the couple up the steps that lead to the top of the stage, just as they burst through the curtains themselves. With Jackman hot on their tails, they continue to bolt down the ramp, the fans in Rio De Jinero showering them with boos! Cade turns at the bottom of the ramp, as Jackman slows his pace to a quick walk instead of a run, Cade puts both hands in the air to try and reason with Jackman, as Cassi continues to move around the ring and climb over the barricade, she quickly flees through the crowd.
Cade Sydal: C’mon, Bernie…you’re not seriously holding a grudge still, are you?
Ben Jackman: I’ve told you before…you talk too damn much.
Cade backs up, moving around the ring himself, he looks over his shoulder to see that his girlfriend has already made her getaway, and he takes the opportunity to quickly hop over the barricade himself, prompting Jackman to resume his run!
Eryk Masters: Look at that coward go!
Other Guy: He’s just following his lady! I’m sure he’d stay and fight if he didn’t need to look after her safety!
Eryk Masters: Keep telling yourself that. Whatever helps you sleep at night.
Cade runs through the sea of fans, and Jackman stops at the barricade, watching Cade run he shakes his head before turning toward the timekeeper’s table and grabbing a microphone from Samantha Coil. He climbs in the ring and raises the mic to his lips.
Ben Jackman: You know, Cade you can play this game of cat and mouse until you’re blue in the face but that isn’t going to stop be from coming after you. And when I do catch you, and believe me I will? I’m going to fuck you up. I’m going to hurt you in unspeakable ways. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Jackman drops the microphone with a grin, before he rolls out of the ring and jumps over the same barricade Cade did, apparently allowing the SHOOT Project World Champion a headstart before resuming the chase.
The sound of a heavy heartbeat begins to assault the HSBC Arena, a reptilian thump that sets a huge percentage of the South American crowd on edge. A dark red strobe light accompanies the heartbeat, flashing brightly near the head of the ramp.
The image of a human chest is seen on the SHOOT Project Video Wall, the chest rising and falling with the intake of fearful breaths. Suddenly a needle and thread appear, and in a bloody flash, a single word is SEWN into the flesh of the chest, white stitch dripping with warm plasma.
The stitches spell out the word “SCAR” in repugnant detail, and as soon as this image fades, a single incredibly bright spotlight falls on the head of the ramp.
The curtains flutter, and as Tool’s “Jambi” starts up at full volume, SCAR’s Pale Rider finally rears his ugly head.
“HERE FROM THE KING’S MOUNTAIN VIEW.”
“HERE FROM THE WILD DREAM COME TRUE.”
“FEAST LIKE A SULTAN, I DO!”
“ON TREASURES AND FLESH, NEVER FEW.”
Entragian tosses the curtains aside, stepping out to stand in the spotlight. The pallid monster wears his usual white tights, adorned with black tribal serpents coiling around both legs. His torso is bedecked in maroon-stained Iron Fist gold, and his arms are covered from elbow to wrist in white wrist tape. Alabaster strike gloves cap off his attire.
Upon seeing him in all of his scarred glory, some of the younger fans are stunned into uneasy silence, and the other half of the arena SHOWERS Isaac in a raucously negative response. Isaac’s head turns slowly, as though on a swivel, his white hair hanging about his face as the boos and jeers rain down on him from all sides of the stands.
The pallid titan’s expression seems almost to shimmer, and then his crocodilian mouth flies open, forked tongue spewing venom as loud as he possibly can, all of it directed at the fans.
Entragian: “GIVE IT TO ME! GIVE IT TO ME! Give me your fucking HATRED, I GORGE myself on it!”
Isaac throws up his arms, spinning in a delighted circle, motioning with both hands that he wants MORE! And the fans are happy to oblige him…
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, he represents Project: SCAR, he is THE IRON FIST CHAMPION, THE IVORY TERROR, ISAAC ENTRAGIAN!!!!!
Other Guy: I swear, this man has the uncanny ability to turn any fun-loving crowd into an angry mob. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you look at this guy, Eryk?
Eryk Masters: I think he’s the craziest motherfucker I’ve ever seen in my life.
Other Guy: Well…I appreciate your honesty!
Entragian walks slowly down the ramp, the spotlight following his progress, and about halfway through his stroll he casually throws up both hands and favors each side of the ramp with a pale middle finger, his eyes never leaving the ring he’s approaching.
The fans roar even MORE at this blatant disrespect, Isaac just smiles, climbing up onto the apron and stepping over the top rope. Once inside the ring, he turns his attention to the ramp, his head cocking at skewed angle.
Other Guy: You know, when I was just a little OG, I had myself the sweetest damn German shepherd. One day he tore into a raccoon, and he ended with rabies. There’s a similarity that has been dancing on the tip of my tongue, but I hadn’t thought of it until just now…
Eryk Masters: What similarity is that?
Other Guy: The look in that dog’s eyes just before my dad blew it’s brains out is the same look I see in Entragian’s eyes every time he walks down to this ring.
Eryk Masters: Okay. Certifiably creeped the fuck out, THANKS for sharing, OG.
Suddenly “Learn to Fly” by The Foo Fighters starts to rock the arena speakers, and the entire vibe of the arena changes. A wave of loud, emphatic cheering travels through the crowd, as if on cue, Alex Brooks bursts forth from the back.
The young man zig-zags to either side of the ramp, jumping up and down, a bright smile on his face. The crowd practically HUMS with excitement, and you can hear the delighted shrieking of several young girls in attendance tonight.
Samantha Coil: Introducing second, he is the RULES OF SURRENDER CHAMPION, ALEX BROOKS!!!!
Alex runs down the ramp, slapping hands with one side of the stands, before racing over to the other side to high five a few more fans. Brooks immediately stops about ten feet away from the ring, and a look of extreme nervousness crosses his face as he sizes up the titanic Pale Rider.
Eryk Masters: Would you LISTEN to this crowd? Alex has IGNITED this arena; these people love this young man.
Other Guy: Especially the girls. Did you see the front row? There’s a whole group of blondes and brunettes with signs spelling out the word “BROOKS!”- There’s no doubt that the Rules of Surrender Champion has captured the hearts of thousands worldwide.
Eryk Masters: Alex came out here like a barrel full of energy, but suddenly he’s become very cautious while gazing in at Entragian, and I can’t blame him one bit. That pale bastard is a foreboding sight to behold…
Brooks carefully slides into the ring under the bottom rope, never allowing his bright blue eyes to stray away from his massive opponent. Alex then stands up, sweeping his blonde hair out of his eyes, and very carefully he removes his dental plate and his championship, handing them off to the referee. Meanwhile Isaac unsnaps the Iron Fist title, thrusting it into the arms of the official as well.
Eryk Masters: Keep in mind folks, this is scheduled to be a NON-TITLE match, and I think it’ll be a great dynamic here to see a champion vs. a champion.
Other Guy: And as we just saw, Alex is now forced to wear a dental plate thanks to a hellacious shot from Kenji Yamada that knocked a tooth CLEAN out of his mouth. That alone is a testament to how SCAR does things…
With both competitors in the ring, the official twirls a finger towards the timekeeper, and the bell immediately clangs, signifying that the match is OFFICIALLY UNDERWAY!
Alex stays close to his corner, rocking on the balls of his feet, giving us the idea that he doesn’t want to get into a brawling predicament with Isaac. The Ivory Terror remains stoic for a moment, then he steps forward to the very center of the ring…and he EXTENDS one pale claw towards Brooks, a politician’s smile blooming on his porcelain-colored face.
Eryk Masters: What the fuck? Is Isaac looking for a handshake here? Alex tried that with Yamada, and Kenji just stared at him.
Other Guy: Maybe a gesture of good sportsmanship from Isaac? I honestly doubt it though, if anything the monster is just baiting Alex in…
For a moment Brooks looks dumfounded, then he swallows deeply, gazing down at Isaac’s hand. After a moment of contemplation, he steps forward, returning the show of respect by placing his hand in Isaac’s hand.
Isaac looks into the young man’s face, pumping his hand once, and then his smile grows into something purely murderous. Brooks tries to withdraw his hand, but it’s too late, Isaac YANKS him in close by his arm, and with his other hand he PALMS Alex’s face, digging his fingers into his flesh with a brutal-looking Iron Claw!
Eryk Masters: There’s your first lesson Alex, NEVER trust a snake, because you will get bitten!
Other Guy: And hot damn, would you look at that Iron Claw? A submission like that is DEADLY when utilized by a man of Isaac’s size; he could very well crack a cheekbone with that monstrous grip.
Alex flails against Isaac’s grip on his face, his breath snuffling out in muffled gasps. He bats at Isaac’s tree limb-like arm, trying to break the hold, but Entragian’s grip is like iron. Alex staggers backwards, and Isaac follows him in, not letting up even a bit. Finally Alex backs into one of the turnbuckles, and he wraps his arms up in the top rope, forcing a break.
Entragian doesn’t even wait for the count to begin, he quickly releases, and then he UNLEASHES with an uppercut that catches Alex on the underside of the jaw, sending a shockwave through the young man’s body, his feet flying up from the canvas.
Alex slumps down a few inches, his face beet red with indentations left from Isaac’s fingers. Isaac keeps the pressure on, setting his feet while CRUSHING body shots into Alex’s abdomen, his white strike gloves finding their mark with sickening intensity over and over again.
Other Guy: This fucking Isaac is like a MACHINE, he is literally one of the most dangerous individuals I’ve ever seen compete in a SHOOT Project ring.
Eryk Masters: You’re not kidding, OG. When I see this guy compete, I see shades of Sammy Rochester, shades of Obsidian, shades of Roland Caldwell. It’s like Entragian is made up of pieces of all of those monsters, and he is one effective motherfucker if you ask me…
The Ivory Terror finally backs off, stalking to the opposite turnbuckle, and then he gets up a huge head of steam and BLAZES towards Brooks, looking for a big turnbuckle clothesline. Alex scouts it though, and using that uncanny speed of his, his ducks the clothesline, and Isaac SMASHES violently into the buckles, bouncing back slightly from the impact.
Brooks sees his window of opportunity, and he immediately SNAPS a karate-style kick into the back of Entragian’s knee. Isaac hobbles forward, hissing in pain, and Alex circles the monster, taking hold of his thick neck before dropping down to both knees with a jawbreaker.
This staggers The Ivory Terror even more, his head craning to the side as he holds the side of his jaw, and Brooks goes in for the kill, dropping down before swiftly using one leg to sweep Isaac’s legs out from underneath him. The albino crashes down like a skyscraper, the wind cleanly knocked from his lungs.
Eryk Masters: Now THAT masterful chain of moves is why Alex Brooks is the Rules of Surrender Champion, this young man can adapt to an opponent so quickly….and he successfully took that big bastard down!
Other Guy: Definitely impressed. Alex needs to rely on his quickness in this match; he has the capability to outpace Entragian and scoop up a HUGE win for himself.
Alex seems to consider Isaac’s location on the canvas, and then he hops up onto the second rope, and with the crowd screaming in support Brooks flings himself downward with a well-placed fist drop, knuckles digging into the pale forehead of Isaac Entragian!
Eryk Masters: Kansas City Shuffle! Beautiful aerial maneuver, I think it’s safe to say it founds it’s mark…
Other Guy: Alex is a creature of SUBLIME agility, damn he can move in there!
Isaac shakes his head from side to side on the mat, trying to jar the cobwebs free. Brooks makes a beeline for the monster, grabbing him by a handful of his long white hair, using all of the strength he can muster to try and pull the three hundred pounder to his feet.
Alex gets him about halfway up, and then Isaac takes over, rising up on his own only to BURY a gigantic knee into Alex’s gut. Brooks doubles over, holding his stomach, and Isaac pulls him violently into a headscissors predicament.
SCAR’s Pale Rider pauses for a moment to smooth his hair back, and then he PULLS Brooks up into the air, steps to the side, and DRILLS the smaller competitor into the mat with a powerbomb. Alex moans as pain assaults his back, but Isaac DOESN’T let go, instead he rips him right back up into the air, and powerbombs him into the canvas a SECOND time!
Brooks grits his teeth together, blonde hair pasted to his forehead with sweat as he tries weakly to fight out of the albino’s grasp, but Isaac is undeterred, and he brings him up into the air a THIRD time.
This time Entragian takes two big steps towards the center of the ring with Alex still on his shoulders, and then he sits out, BLASTING Alex’s spine into the canvas for the FINAL time with a sit-out powerbomb!
Other Guy: Jesus Christ, a trio of powerbombs from the titan known as Entragian! I don’t want to even THINK about how jarring and painful an assault like that can be on a human body…
Eryk Masters: Brooks CANNOT afford to take many more high impact moves like that from Isaac, he’ll be worn down in no time and this match will end abruptly.
As the cameras zoom in on Entragian we can see that he’s roaring curse words at Alex, spittle flying from his pale lips. Isaac leans down, DIGS his hand into Brook’s blonde hair, and then he just blatantly STEPS on Alex’s thigh, keeping him in a forced sitting position.
With his free hand Isaac holds Alex’s head stationary, and then he twirls a few locks of hair around his knuckles, and PULLS as hard as he possibly can. There’s nasty tearing sound as the chunk of hair is YANKED clear of Alex’s scalp, and a small amount of blood starts to ooze down from Alex’s hairline to wash over his handsome features.
Meanwhile The Ivory Terror raises his hand HIGH, showing off the lock of hair he ripped from Alex’s head. A dark, shit-eating grin has spread across Isaac’s face, and after displaying his prize he tucks the lock of hair into the waistband of his tights.
Brooks stumbles up to his feet, proceeding to take a wild swing at Isaac, but the monster sidesteps easily and RUNS towards the ring ropes. Alex is slow to turn around, one hand working to swipe blood out of his eyes, and when he finally does turn around his EATS a ring-rocking spear courtesy of The Ivory Terror!
Three hundred pounds of white muscle SMASHES into Alex’s gut at tremendous speed, and Brooks is literally carried across the ring in midair several feet before being DRILLED down to the canvas. Alex rolls against the mat while cradling his belly after touching down, his eyes WIDE with anguish.
Eryk Masters: My god, first Isaac RIPS a piece of the man’s hair out, and then he practically KILLS him with that gore!
Other Guy: Every time I see Entragian hit that spear I am literally in AWE, to see a man of that size hit a move of that magnitude is scary as HELL.
Isaac climbs up to his feet after delivering the gore, his eyes starting to sparkle with a desire for sadism. Very carefully, he walks over to the Rules of Surrender Champion, who’s still writhing on the canvas and practically dry retching.
Isaac stares down at this sight for a moment, his grin stretching at his face. Almost gently, Entragian places his boot on Alex’s stomach, and then he just starts to GRIND down with his heel. Brooks starts to cough violently, his blue eyes bulging out of his head and clearly watering.
The Ivory Terror’s head tilts back, a chuckle shaking his giant chest as the crowd ROARS with disapproval. The voices of females are clear in the cacophony, countless girls in the arena screaming for their fallen idol.
Eryk Masters: Oh come on, this is just SICK! How about you go for a pinfall, Isaac? You’d rather torment a man when he’s down…
Other Guy: He’s just playing with him, Masters. Isaac is like a kid with a magnifying glass taking pleasure in burning an ant; he gets OFF on shit like this…
Entragian finally eases up, and then he leans down, clamping a hand around Alex’s throat and forcefully dragging him up to his feet. Once up Brooks holds one fist against his damaged abdomen, but in a surprise burst of strength, he sends a STRAIGHT kick into Isaac’s knee, knocking himself free of the monster’s grasp.
The Ivory Terror stumbles back a step, and Alex marks his man, then he LEAPS into the air and sends both feet right into Entragian’s shoulder socket with a textbook dropkick! The dropkick catches Isaac completely off guard, and the force of the maneuver spins him to the canvas, his huge frame crashing down violently.
Eryk Masters: WOW! Just when you thought Alex was in a bad way, he shocks the world!
Other Guy: Gotta admit, that dropkick was damn near perfect. So crisp, so precise, he used leverage to take the monster down.
With the albino down on his back, Alex quickly runs the ropes, and once he gets to Isaac’s prone body he leaps yet again, getting INSANE HEIGHT before allowing his body to smash down against Isaac’s torso with a mega-sized senton!
A hiss of air escapes Isaac’s pallid lips, his crazed eyes squeezing shut against the pain. Brooks wastes no time, he scrambles atop SCAR’s Pale Rider, hooking one gigantic leg.
Entragian kicks out before three, his chest heaving as he struggles to get some fresh oxygen into his lungs.
Alex looks down, obviously frustrated that he couldn’t get the pinfall. The young man scrubs at his face, wiping away sweat and blood, and then he gingerly rises up to his feet. Brooks makes an attempt to bring Isaac to his feet, but in a flash of pallid claws, Entragian snakes an arm around Alex’s leg and whips him down to the canvas, and then the monster tightens his grip on Alex’s ankle just begins to GRIND at the bone.
Other Guy: Oh SHIT! BRITTLE BE THY BONES! Entragian has that patented ankle lock cinched in TIGHT!
Eryk Masters: This is a BAD place for Brooks to find himself in right now; he’s going to have to use every ounce of willpower he has to fight this…
Entragian rises fully vertical, making it a STANDING ankle lock. Entragian begins to just THRASH at the ankle with all of the ungodly strength in his body, his mouth stretched into a snarl, his eyes liquid pools of VICIOUS determination.
Alex absolutely SHIVERS in pain, his eyes wide and desperate, his hands literally clawing at the canvas in an effort to find even a little bit of purchase.
Isaac easily drags him back towards the center of the ring, effectively destroying the hope of reaching the bottom rope. Alex BURIES his face against the canvas, trying to contain his excruciation as best he can, but finally he can hold out no longer, and he gives voice to his pain, SCREAMING until his vocal cords are raw!
Entragian: “I’LL BREAK IT IN HALF, ALEX! I’LL BREAK THIS ANKLE RIGHT IN FRONT OF ALL OF YOUR LITTLE FANGIRLS! TAP THE FUCK OUT, BOY!”
The official asks Alex if he wants to give, but he vehemently shakes his head from side to side, his face an ALARMING shade of dark red. Spittle covers his bottom lip, and a little rivulet of snot has burst forth out of one of his nostrils.
Brooks seems to gather EVERYTHING he has inside of himself, and then he tucks his head and he ROLLS forward. The momentum catapults Entragian into the ropes, forcing him to break the hold. Isaac’s throat connects with the top rope, an audible gasp escaping his mouth.
Other Guy: I thought it was OVER! I have no doubt that if Isaac had kept that ankle lock on much longer, Alex’s ankle would be nothing but BONE SHARDS right now.
Eryk Masters: Brooks DUG DEEP to break that hold, and I’m pulling for this young man, he showed a ridiculous amount of heart to even withstand that for as long as he did!
Alex pushes PAINFULLY up to his feet, limping slightly as he rises. Meanwhile Isaac spins around, holding his throat, and in a burst of speed he races forward, throwing out one huge boot in an effort to take Alex’s head off.
Brooks sees it coming at the last possible second, and he drops down to his belly, and Isaac SOARS over him only to CROTCH himself across the top rope!
Other Guy: Ohhhh! Entragian was unable to score with MARK OF THE BEAST there, missed his bicycle kick and now he sits uncomfortably astride the top rope…
Brooks sees his opening, and moving carefully while favoring his foot, he jumps onto the second rope and springboards towards Isaac, only to SNAP a nasty-looking kick right into Isaac’s temple! The albino tumbles back into the ring like a sack of bricks, falling down to the canvas on his back, eyes misty.
Alex sees an opening, and he ascends the turnbuckles, looking down at the monster’s body laid across the canvas. The fans ROAR in support of Brooks, and after a brief pause, Alex HURLS himself skyward, looking for a shooting star press!
Shockingly, Entragian BOUNDS up to his feet and JUMPS, meeting Alex midair with a MASSIVE uppercut! Alex’s jaw takes the uppercut mid-flip, and a gusher of spit flies from his mouth, and then his body SMASHES to the canvas in a jumbled mess of limbs.
Other Guy: OH MY GOD!! DID YOU SEE THAT?!?! Isaac knocked Brooks right out the fucking SKY!!
Once Alex touches down his body is completely still, his eyes firmly closed, a little drool leaking out from the corner of his mouth. Entragian makes a beeline for his fallen carcass, SCRAPING Alex up off the canvas by the arms. Isaac positions Alex so that their backs touch, and then he JUMPS again, landing in a sitting position and CRUSHING Alex’s skull and neck into the canvas with a career-shortening vertabreaker!
There’s a horrible CRUNCH sound as Alex’s spine is compressed, his neck snapping back awkwardly as he lands.
Other Guy: SPINAL DOOM!!! This is the first time we’ve seen Isaac use that finishing maneuver in SHOOT…just take in the aftermath, Brooks looks DEAD!
Entragian immediately makes the cover while digging the point of his elbow into Alex’s throat.
Samantha Coil: Here is your winner, the IRON FIST CHAMPION, ISAAC ENTRAGIAN!!!!!
Other Guy: I swear, the brutality if Entragian is just out of this world, with a man like that representing SCAR, how can ANYONE stop these guys?
Eryk Masters: He is a force of CRUEL nature, OG, no doubt about it. And on this night, he’s a victorious force of nature too.
Isaac approaches the official, and then he promptly RIPS the Iron Fist Title into his arms. Entragian then stalks over to Alex’s unmoving carcass, and he kneels down beside him, pulling him up by the hair.
Alex’s face is sad sight to behold, his charming features smeared in blood and perspiration. Entragian grins, and then holds the Iron Fist Title up right next to Alex’s face. He shouts to a photographer standing close by on the outside, his voice commanding and harsh.
Entragian: “Hey, fat boy! Snap our photo. I want to remember this moment…”
Isaac poses with Alex like he’s a deer carcass after a successful hunt, a sharp, winning smile shining on the albino’s face.
The stocky photographer has no choice but to comply, he gets close to the ring, and then a flashbulb pops. After the picture has been taken, Isaac chuckles and SLAMS Alex’s head back to the mat.
The Ivory Terror exits the ring then, the crowd serenading him with verbal disgust.
The SHOOT Project video screen comes to life. It’s a series of heavy static with applicable noise. The scene briefly comes to life, the static noise disappears, and the word “SAVIOR” etched roughly in white against a dark grey background appear. The screen goes back to static and fuzzy noise, before returning to a similar picture, this one saying “SMILES”. The crowd begins to boo loudly, having figured out who is going to appear on the video screen. The screen returns to static.
Eryk Masters: So, I guess we’ve got a video message from Jester Smiles here. Wonder what he is going to whine about today.
Other Guy: What you might call whining, some might call a valid point. Just sayin’, Eryk, you really gotta watch your bias.
The screen comes back to life. The room is solid white. There are no other colors, no discernible anything, except solid, blinding white. Sitting in the middle, clothed white dress shirt with black pants and a black tie is none other than Jester Smiles. He leans back in a white chair, grinning ear to ear. His face is only half painted. The left side of his face is painted white, his eye outlined in red with wavy streaks running down his cheek. There is a ride smile coming from his half red painted lips. He is completely bald, so the entire left half of his head is completely white.
Jester Smiles: My eyes are open. I can see, I can feel…everything.
The crowds booing gets louder.
Jester Smiles: I had a realization at Revolution 74. When I came out, everything I said was truth. Pure and simple fact. But it was truth being spoken by my old self. My old skin, so to speak. I have since cast that skin aside. You see, there was a dark hole in me. I was searching for something in others, a hero, as you all know. That darkness was overtaking me, and I was trying to fill it with lots of things. Faith in others and drinking mostly.
And then I realized something. I would never find what I needed in others. Not in SHOOT Project. Not in this world. People are weak. Foolish. Sheep.
The boos get even louder.
Other Guy: Okay…the hell is Jester talking about now?
Jester Smiles: SHOOT Project doesn’t need a hero. It needs a savior. It needs a cleansing fire to burn away all the old habits. Habits created by the so called ‘legends’ that have been making their ‘great’ returns to SHOOT Project. A cleansing fire to burn away the old, broken, and weak. The useless. The slime and viruses that have been plaguing this company as of late.
But someone must start the fire. The flaw in my plan was I was looking for someone to start the fire. I was looking for someone to take the torch from me.
But why search for a torch bearer when I already have the torch? I’ll still be looking for the future stars of SHOOT Project to rise up, and I’ll still be looking for someone to pass the responsibilities on to. We still need heroes.
But first we need a savior. So, you are looking at him. No longer the Jester Smiles of old. No longer am I the man I ONCE was. I have become something more. Fate has laid in motion my path, and I see it clearly. I am destined to lead this company to a better future. A brighter future.
Many will fall along the way. The first will be Real Deal.
The grin Jester was wearing grows even wider.
Jester Smiles: You see, when I came out last week, I was not speaking to Real Deal at all. My words were not meant to be taken by a man that I respect as much as I respect Real Deal. I had hoped for a challenge from the REAL problems of this new ‘old’ culture. I had hoped Loco Martinez or Rocky Stellar would come out. I was hoping that The Devil himself, Cronos Diamante would step out of mediocrity to face me. Hell, give me the one I’ve longed for for SO long. Give me the returning, and probably soon leaving, Azraith DeMitri.
But you came out, Real Deal. The poster child of SHOOT Project. The man who built the house that we all live in now. A REAL legend, not someone who just throws the title around to make their dick feel bigger.
I’m sorry it was you, Real Deal, I really am. But another half of me is glad. Another half of me is thrilled you answered the call. Because you will be my first message, and it will be a grand message. When I destroy you at Redemption, the world will see just how dangerous I am. The filth that I stand against will begin to tremble in their boots at the horrors that await them.
And SHOOT Project will see that their Savior has risen.
I am Jester Smiles.
I am destined to be your Savior.
Prepare to be cleansed.
Jester unbuttons the first few buttons of his shirt and ripes it open, revealing “SAVIOR” written across his chest in big black letters. The scene fades out to an image, simple black letters on a white background, that reads “Revolution 76: The Cleansing Begins”.
Eryk Masters: So Jester Smiles thinks he’s some kind of Christ-like figure now. What does all this mean?
Other Guy: I think anyway you spin it, Eryk, it’s probably not good for anyone.
We go to the announce table where we see Eryk Masters and the Other Guy sitting. Masters begins hyping the next contest, OG gets up and takes off his headset, and begins putting on a poncho. This clearly distracts Masters, but he continues on professionally.
Eryk Masters: Our Next match features one of SHOOT’s most heated rivalries. The Hierarchy and Stellar Insanity have been at each other’s throats for months, and with the addition of Mirage to their ranks, the Hierarchy have never been more dangerous.
OG gets the poncho on and puts the headset back on quickly.
Other Guy: That’s right, Eryk. And TONIGHT Stellar and Martinez get a chance to exact some revenge on the man who peed in the cheerios the night of their return, in Mirage.
Eryk Masters: Too true, and for the first time in a LONG time Mirage will be inside a SHOOT Project ring… OOOOOkay… can I ask? what’s with the poncho?
Other Guy: I’m hedging my bets. I had my suit dry cleaned twice last Revolution and I STILL didn’t get all that damn glitter from Loco’s entrance out.
Eryk Masters: But this is a Stellar Insanity entrance.
Other Guy: Still… better safe than sorry.
The arena’s lights dim and we hear:
"JUST A SMALL TOWN GIRL…
LIVING IN A LONELY WORLD"
The Jumbotron springs to life with: iC0n + Freak$h0w = $i as Journey’s "Don’t Stop Believing" rips through the arena. The crowd ROARS for Stellar Insanity in Rio.
Rocky Stellar walks out first, wearing a blond mullet wig and dressed like "The Rockers" from the 80’s – frilly Red, orange and black parachute wrestling pants with streamers hanging off his arms. Stellar sways to the music on the stage, before Stellar turns and doesn’t see his partner. He stops for a second, walks into the back, then comes out, dragging Loco behind him. Loco is dressed exactly the same, but his mullet is skewed to the side of his head because he refuses to wear it.
Other Guy: Oh my God, it looks like wrestling from the 80s just threw up all over Stellar Insanity.
Loco makes a bee line to the ring, clearly not happy about what is going on, while Stellar stops and sways to the music some more, clearly in his element. Loco gets into the ring and rips off his mullet, throwing it out to the crowd. Finally, after an uncomfotably long time, Stellar finally gets in the ring and climbs a turnbuckle and thrists his arms into the air, posing for the fans.
Eryk Masters: In Loco’s defense, while he may have picked music Stellar didn’t like? At least he didn’t make Stellar dress up.
Samantha Coil: Making their way to the ring, at a combined weight of 467 pounds. They are THE ICON, RRRRRRRRROCKY STELLAR. THE FREAKSHOW, LLLLLLLLOCO MARTINEZ. SSSSSSSSTELLLLAR IN..SSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAANITY!!!!
At that point, the glitter cannons go off in the corner, taking Stellar completely by surprise. He gets blasted in the face buy a metric ton of glitter, while the glitter balls in the other three corner explode up, then fall exactly as planned. Stellar shakes his head for a second, then turns back pissed off at Loco. Loco, though, is on the mat cracking up as he looks at Stellar, who’s face is completely covered in gold glitter.
Other Guy: Hah! Looks who’s not gonna be covered in the "Glizzard" this time?
Eryk Masters: So Stellar just received a glitter facial, much to his surprise, and Loco’s amusement.
Other Guy: So he received a "glacial"?
Eryk Masters: Kind of… you know… only that word already exists.
"Don’t Stop Believing" fades away as Stellar Insanity walk to their corner and loosen up while talking last minute strategy.
Darkness befalls the entire arena and the screaming Rio De Janeiro fans shift their adulation into sheer hatred once the SHOOTron explodes into a sheer white background. Moments later, the white background turns into a familiar progression of percentages.
Eryk Masters: Kill me now.
Other Guy: It’ll be okay, E.
A nanosecond flash of Azrael Goeren.
Another flash, this time of X-Calibur.
A third flash of Hierarchy’s newest member, Mirage, in the eerie looking mask that he debuted in.
The lights explode back on and The Hierarchy, X-Calibur, Mirage, and Yuri, all stand at the beginning of the entrance ramp looking poised for battle. After a momentary "huddle", both Mirage and X slowly make their way down the ramp, with Yuri on their heels. Looking up at Stellar Insanity, Mirage removes his black and purple trench coat. X, removing a brilliantly crafted t-shirt that simply says "HI" on the front and "ARKY" on the back, rolls into the ring.
Other Guy: Oh God. That… that shirt… is AWESOME.
Eryk Masters: Seriously? Hi-Arky? Are you fucking KIDDING me? I don’t think ANYBODY in that group can spell a fucking word.
Other Guy: YOU SPELL YOUR NAME WITH A "Y", ERYK.
The music fades and the referee calls for the bell.
Eryk Masters: X and Loco will be starting off. The two of them are really jaw jacking one another.
Other Guy: yeah, for any kids watching at home? Ear Muffs!
Eryk Masters: There is a lot of history here. Stretching for years before the two of them landed inside a SHOOT ring.
The bell rings and Loco takes off for X. X swings a wild clothesline, but Loco ducks it and bounces off the ropes, but X is just step quicker and takes a few steps towards Martinez and leaps with a high knee that levels, Loco. Loco writhes on the mat clutching at his face. X-Calibur winds up and stomps down on Loco’s torso viciously. He delivers another boot and then drags Loco to his feet. Scoops him up, and drives Loco down with a body slam. X grabs him again and takes Loco over with a nice vertical suplex. X pops his hips and rolls Loco over, and they end up standing, X pulling Loco tighter and adjusting his grip and launches Loco back with a northern lights suplex. He bridges!
Two…NO! Loco shoulders out just after two.
Other Guy: That was like watching the Evolution of Wrestling.
X smirks at his opponent, dismissively. He walks to his corner and tags in Marcus Mirage. Mirage steps through the ropes as a decent group of long time SHOOT fans pop for the legends return to a SHOOT ring. He circles Loco and as Loco gets to his hands and knees he buries his shin into Loco’s ribcage. He follows by dropping down, putting his shin across the throat of Loco, who is flailing with his inability to breath. The referee starts his 5 count…
4… Mirage stands up. Loco gasps. The Crowd Boos. Mirage laughs as he puts his hands up innocently, and then viciously drops down and wraps his right hand over Loco’s throat. Leaning with all his might. The referee doesn’t even start the count, he goes to pry Mirage off Loco, and as he does. Mirage levels an icy glare, and points at the ref as a nonverbal warning of "Keep your damn hands off me."
He turns his attention back to Loco who drives a boot straight into Mirage’s shin. Mirage winces, and favors the leg for a few minutes as Loco attempts to get his breath.
Eryk Masters: A school yard tactic akin to stomping on a bully’s foot to gain a few precious seconds.
Loco gets to a seated position and slides himself back into the corner. Stellar begins urging for Loco to make a tag, the crowd starts clapping in time with Stellar banging his fist on the top turnbuckle. Mirage stalks Loco. Walking with malice in his eye.
Other Guy: EVERYTHING Mirage does is with a purpose.
Loco again lashes out striking at Mirage’s shin, which drops him to a knee. Loco pops up quickly and drives a knee into Mirage’s masked face. He swings around behind him and buries his shin in between Mirage’s shoulder blades. He bounces off the ropes and drives a wicked low drop kick to Mirage’s forehead that sends him down to the mat hard. Loco gets up, still winded, and heads to his corner. The crowd and Stellar urging him on, he’s on his he’s inches from the tag.
X-Calibur hopped in the ring and leveled Martinez with a running forearm shiver to the back of the head.
Other Guy: Shades of the Lex Express, right there.
Eryk Masters: Only with a healthy dose of cheating.
The referee tries to regain order. He starts to usher X out of the ring as Loco again begins to crawl his way to the corner.
Crowd: Lets go Lo-Co! *Clap clap clapclapclap*
Stellar is desperately extending his hand. Loco is inching his way there painfully. Loco reaches his hand out, and its short! Mirage has his leg, and is keeping him from making the tag. Mirage smirks, but Loco doesn’t hesitate he leaps and levels Mirage with an enzuigiri. The crowd erupts as Loco stumbles to his feet and makes a leaping tag.
Crowd: Stel-lar! Stel-lar!
Stellar is in and mounts Mirage and begins raining rights and lefts down with wreckless fury. Stellar gets up, bounces off the ropes and drops a knee across Mirage’s chest. He makes a cover, but the ref who FINALLY got X out of the ring gestures wildly.
Eryk Masters: NO…
Other Guy: The ref didn’t see the tag! Classic!
Eryk Masters: Insert your "blind ref" joke, here, folks.
Stellar looks wide eyed and frustrated as the referee gestures and explains that Stellar isn’t the legal man. Stellar tries to explain that he DID in fact get the tag from Loco, but it falls on deaf ears. The ref tells Loco to get back in the ring, and as Loco steps between the ropes Mirage, who has recovered during the chaos, runs over and punts the middle rope that goes right up into Loco’s crotchel region, and causes the MoFo to slump down into the ring holding "his boys"
Other Guy: I think Mirage just scrambled Loco’s "eggs"… if you know what I mean.
Mirage scoops Loco up and slams him down with authority. He brings Loco back to his feet and delivers a stiff short armed clothesline. He doesn’t let go. He drags Loco back to his feet. Another even more vicious short armed clothesline.
Eryk Masters: Look at the inside of Mirage’s arm! Its turning red and becoming welted from the impact of those blows.
Other Guy: Welted?
Eryk Masters: You know what I mean.
Mirage still hasn’t let go as he sneers at the crowd who rains their hatred down upon him. He drags Loco up, who is wobbly to say the least. Mirage goes to snap him in for a third short armed clothesline, but Loco snaps down and slides between Mirage, popping up behind him and delivering a quick Pump Handle Slam. The crowd loses it!
Other Guy: Shades of the late great, Road Dogg with that pump handle slam!
Eryk Masters: There is SO Much wrong with that sentence, OG.
Other Guy: I know, but Loco asked for me to work a "late great Billy Gunn" reference into his match for his birthday, and after watching him get his ass kicked? This might be the closest he gets.
Loco is down. Mirage gets to a knee holding his back. Mirage looks to Loco who has started to move a bit. Mirage gets up and walks over to tag X back into this match.
Eryk Masters: Man the Hierarchy has done a superb job of cutting off the ring. Keeping Loco in the ring and wearing him down.
Other Guy: They’re two incredibly gifted long time students of the game.
X stalks Loco who has finally gotten to a knee. X smirks at Martinez who gets to his feet and gestures for X to "bring it". The crowd roars at this act of defiance. X charges and levels Loco with a clothesline. He brings Loco up, and sets him up in a reverse DDT position. He looks at Stellar and mouths "This one’s for YOU". But before he can reverse DDT Loco, Loco reaches up and grabs X by the back of the head and pulls down while bringing his left knee up into X’s forehead. X is staggered, and Loco quickly flips both legs up from standing on the mat and brings them up on either side of X-Calibur’s head and rolls foreward with a head scissors take down. The crowd cheers wildly as X lands draped across the middle rope, his head sticking out towards the crowd. Loco gets up and buries a punt to the ribcage. He looks at the referee and with a lot of sarcastic rage yells "LOOK", right before reaching out and tagging the hand of the Stellar One. Rocky gets in the ring quickly and drops X-Calibur with a running clothesline. X is up quickly, and Stellar bounces off the ropes and nails another violent clothesline. Brazil chanting "Stel-lar", "Stel-lar", and getting behind the Icon.
Eryk Masters: Stellar Insanity finally has a little momentum in this matchup!
Stellar brings X to his feet and whips him off the ropes, and catches him with a Ron Simmons styled standing spine buster. Stellar drops down and makes a cover.
Th-NO! X shoulders out.
Stellar stays on the offense. He grabs X from behind, and delivers a nice side suplex. He goes to follow that up, but is met with a thumb to the eye by X.
Other Guy: An eye for an eye! Last week Martinez blinded herr Goeren. This week? Turnabout is fair play.
Stellar clutches at his eye and X takes a moment before delivering a nasty looking and sounding headbutt to the bridge of Stellar’s nose. He winds up and delivers another UFC illegal headbutt. X is up and drops Stellar with an STO take down. He makes a quick cover.
NO! Stellar shoulders out.
X slaps the mat in frustration, but stays on the offensive. He bring Stellar up with him and rocks him with a right hand, before whipping him on the ropes. He goes for a clothesline that Stellar ducks, and runs to the other side of the ropes. X drops down and Stellar runs over top of him. Stellar off the ropes again, and X takes him up and over with a deep arm drag.
Eryk Masters: Shades of Ricky Steamboat, right there.
X holds on, torquing Stellar’s arm.
Other Guy: With Stellar’s arthritic shoulder this must be excruciating.
Eryk Masters: Stellar has arthritis in his shoulder?
Other Guy: At his age I’m assuming he has arthritis all over. Thank you, Rio! I’ll be here all week.
X twists the arm and really digs his knee into the back of the joint. Loco tries to rally the crowd by clapping. They start, but suddenly the lights flicker as the Hierarchy’s entrance music is pumped into the arena. X looks at Mirage, confused. Mirage half shrugs. X wrenches back, and reaches out and tags Mirage in. Mirage buries a boot to the shoulder of Stellar.
The lights in the arena suddenly go dark, the fans instantly booing.
Eryk Masters: Oh no…what new nonsense do they have up their sleeves?!
The video screen lights up with a familiar percentage symbol countdown.
Other Guy: We’re so close to civilization, do you think we might find ourselves some broadband?
Other Guy: Tee hee!
Eryk Masters: Shut up.
A trumpet sounds, as the screen freezes on 99%. The air is growing more and more electric as the trumpet continues to sound. The screen goes black, putting the entire arena in darkness. The trumpet stops. The war in the ring stops for just a moment, as the two teams try to get their bearings about them. The camera catches X’s face, as he looks at Mirage, the two men confused. He tags Mirage in and steps out onto the ring apron, staring at the entrance.
THE APPLICATION HIERARCHY.EXE HAS FAILED.
The fans begin to cheer.
ALL OF THE LIGHTS.
"All Of The Lights" by Kanye West begins to play as we see Yuri near X at the ring apron. Mirage turns his attention away from Loco and Stellar, who seem just as confused by the interruption.
Turn up the lights in here, baby
Extra bright, I want y’all to see this
Turn up the lights in here, baby
You know what I need
Want y’all to see everything
Want y’all to see ALL OF THE LIGHTS
The arena is suddenly and powerfully BATHED in the brightest of white lights as there is one single word on the SHOOT Tron.
The fans go apeshit as X struggles to get his eyes focused from the harsh white of the lights coming back up full blast. Standing at the entrance ramp? You guessed it.
Eryk Masters: IT’S HIM! DONOVAN KING IS IN THE BUILDING!
King stands still. He says nothing. He does nothing. His music continues to play. He is dressed in a pair of black and green work out pants and a black wife beater. He has a full beard and he stares a hole through X-Calibur, Mirage, and Yuri. All three members of Hierarchy are focused now, only for Rocky Stellar to wrap Mirage up in a schoolboy! He stacks all his weight on Mirage and the referee counts and the fans are counting right along with him!
The bell rings, the fans ERUPT as X turns around to see Rocky roll away from Mirage, who is dumbfounded he was just pinned. Yuri and X continue to try to divide their attention as King walks slowly to the ring, picking up speed with each step he takes!
Other Guy: HERE WE GO!
The referee dives from the ring as King clubs Yuri from behind, YANKS X off of the ring apron, and slides into the ring! King is in the ring with the quickness and IMMEDIATELY begins to tear into Mirage! The music stops as the fans are cheering this all on! Yuri slides into the ring and he is immediately greeted with a HARD shoulderblock from Stellar as Loco quickly hops to the top rope and NAILS Happiness on him! Yuri clutches his chest as X stares at the carnage in the middle of the ring. He walks over to Yuri and pulls him from the ring as the two of them glare at King, who is perched over Mirage’s body.
Other Guy: I guess those rumors about Donovan King being out for the count are just that!
King slowly picks Mirage up and holds him so he can take a good long look at his partner on the outside. Mirage reaches for his partner, only for Donovan King to SNAP him to the mat with DEALBREAKER. King is up, standing between Mirage and X-Calibur!
Eryk Masters: That’s a Dealbreaker! Not an X-Terminator, but a Dealbreaker! And it looks like Donovan King’s made one HELL of a statement here tonight!
Loco and Stellar slowly pick Mirage up and drag him over to the ring apron, King glaring at the two of them as they do so. Stellar pushes Mirage off of the ring apron and to the floor with his boot as Loco makes the motions as if he were wiping his hands off. The two of them look at King, who has turned his attention back to X-Calibur and Yuri. At the top of the ramp, Azrael Goeren has come out now, furious at what he sees before him.
Eryk Masters: He looks a LOT healthier than he let on!
Stellar Insanity looks on as Donovan King takes the microphone from Samantha Coil.
Donovan King: The winners of this match…as a result of Hierarchy gettin’ FUCKED UP…
King looks at Rocky Stellar and then to Loco Martinez.
Donovan King: The ICON…Rocky Stellar…The Greatest Show on Earth…Loco Martinez…STELLAR…INSANITY!
The fans pop BIG as King throws the microphone down. "Don’t Stop Believin" picks up, the fans continuing to cheer. King looks over at Stellar Insanity, who merely look back at him. He steps out of the ring, standing on the floor as Hierarchy is united on the stage. Stellar Insanity remain in the ring, holding their arms up in victory, as Donovan King continues to remain focused. The SHOOT Project Helmet appears on the screen as we fade to black.