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 being held high in the air by the World Champion X-Calibur, followed closely by him locking Trey Willett in the Bite of the Basilisk.
You need to think fast
Tanya Black and Cade Sydal are shown sauntering down to the ring quickly intercut with Maya Nakashima defeating Mason Pierce to become Rule of Surrender Champion. Jonas Coleman standing toe to toe with Kenji Yamada is shown next.
This is our first but I guarantee it’ll be your last!
The Bad Ass Brotherhood are shown with the World Tag Team Championship belts around their waists before we see Isaac Entragian wrapping his arms around the hooker he paid to help destroy Diamond Del Carver.
Got news if you think you bad
Diamond Del Carver going for the Diamond Cutter on Donovan King is shown quickly intercut with Azrael Goeren going face to face with Patrick Kidd. Briefly, we see Crazy Boy staring at the camera, a grin on his face.
All your other battles make me laugh
El Asso Wipo is shown breaking some fool’s back before we see Corey Lazarus mugging for the camera, holding the lens directly at his face.
You need to start runnin’…
The Gunslingers are shown double teaming Goeren before we get to see Dan Stein flying off the ropes with a springboard before we see Jean-Gerard Baptiste with Anarchy behind him.
You’re standin’ on the tracks and the train is comin’!
Laura Seton standing with Jaime Alejandro, who is quickly shown hitting Crazy Boy in the face before we see Johnny Napalm locking up with Lunatikk Crippler before it cuts to Crippler holding the Sin City Championship high in the air.
NOWHERE TO GO
We see Maya tying his bandanna across his nose before we see Thomas Manchester Black punching a punching bag, sweating pouring down his face. Quickly, we see Danny Corsair slapping hands with the fans as he comes down to the ring.
You need a miracle!
Diamond Del Carver tagging out to Patrick Kidd is shown before we see Donovan King stalking the fallen 3M’s bloody body. Without warning, we get to see Obsidian pulling his hood over his head, his beady eyes penetrating deep into whatever heart the viewer has.
Nothing’s gonna save you
Azrael Goeren’s arrival is shown followed by Jun Kenshin hitting the Heaven’s Blade on Corazon.
And I’ll scream it from the top of the world!
Donovan King is shown catching Dan Stein with the Dealbreaker.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
The Hierarchy is shown en mass during the Redemption Rumble, having torn through the people in the ring with them.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
Mason Pierce looking over the fans with Piper Fury in tow is shown.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Project:SCAR is shown, the four of them preparing for war, shrouded in darkness.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
X-Calibur leaning over a podium during a press conference, grinning his evil grin for all to see.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
We see Tony Lorenzo hold the World Heavyweight Championship to the camera for all to see.
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
The empty SHOOT Project ring.
Whatcha gonna do when it’s just me and you!
Whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do!
Cut to the ring, where Samantha Coil stands tall in its center, raising the microphone to her mouth.
Samantha Coil: The following contest is scheduled for one fall with a 30-minute time limit!
Lynyrd Skynyrd’s "Gimme Back My Bullets" cues up, bringing forth Henry Gordon from behind the curtain. He receives a polite reaction, to be fair, and stretches his massive frame out at the top of the ramp, briefly jogging in place for a moment.
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, he weighs in tonight at 320 pounds and stands at 6 feet, 2 inches tall…
Gordon reveals a huge smile on his face, showing that he’s just happy to even be here tonight, and jogs down the ramp, slapping the few outstretched hands for him along the way. He hops up onto the apron with a knee, quickly pulling himself to his feet, and then looks out over the crowd, wiping the bottom of his boots off on the apron.
Samantha Coil: …hailing from Harrisonburg, Virginia…
Gordon steps between the ropes, walking into the center of the ring and holding a hand up as he backs into his corner, referee Dennis Heflin following him in to pat him down quick.
Samantha Coil: …HENRY…GORDON!!!
"Gimme Back My Bullets" dies along with the houselights, replaced by the soft glow of the VideoWall as an old fashioned, black and white film countdown begins rolling, the film flickering and a beep heard after every digit to a solid mixture of cheer and jeers.
Slayer’s "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" cues up at the start of the first verse, prompting Corey Lazarus and Gregory Price to push themselves out from behind the curtain, a spotlight focusing on Corey as he immediately drops to a knee at the top of the ramp, his arms stretched out to his sides with a wide, confident smile on his face.
==DON’T YOU KNOW THAT I WANT YOU?==
Samantha Coil: Introducing next, he weighs in tonight at 232 pounds and stands at 6-foot-1…
==DON’T YOU KNOW THAT I’LL ALWAYS BE TRUE?==
Corey jumps to his feet as the pre-chord guitar lick plays, shaking out his limbs, and then begins casually strutting down the ramp, stopping for a brief moment to grab the nearest camera and blow a kiss directly into the lens.
Samantha Coil: …being accompanied to the ring by Gregory Price, he hails from Hollywood, California…
==OH, WON’T YOU COME WITH ME==
==AND TAKE MY HAND?==
Corey sprints the rest of the way down the ramp…
Samantha Coil: …he is "The Premier Attraction"…
==OH, WON’T YOU COME WITH ME==
==AND WALK THIS LAND?==
…dives under the bottom rope, tumbling to a knee in the center of the ring as the guitars divebomb…
==PLEASE, TAKE MY HAND==
…and then bangs his head to the beat of the drums, jumping back to his feet with arms widespread when the main melody of the song returns.
Samantha Coil: …COREY…LAZARUS!!!
"In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" dies out as Heflin pats Corey down, now, and Laz does little more than slide his gold-rimmed Ray Bans off, handing them through the ropes to Price at ringside. The houselights return to normal, and Heflin calls for the bell.
**DING DING DING**
Henry Gordon steps out from his corner as Corey stays in his, staring at him from across the ring with disinterest. Heflin signals for the two to begin, prompting Gordon to step further into the center, unsure of how to position his arms.
Other Guy: It looks like Gordon isn’t quite sure if he should look to out-wrestle Lazarus or try to stand up and fight him, judging by him randomly holding up a fist or crouching forward with open hands.
Eryk Masters: A veru astute observation, OG. Corey, meanwhile…well…
Heflin again signals for the two to begin, with Corey slowly pulling himself up to take a seat on the top turnbuckle, arms crossed over his chest. He feigns a yawn as Heflin walks over to him, a bit annoyed at the blatant display of arrogance by the Hollywood Kid.
Eryk Masters: …let’s just say he doesn’t seem to take this one too seriously.
Corey stands up on the middle rope, holding his hands out to the side, forcing a pop from the pro-Laz section of audience and boos from everybody else.
Other Guy: Really?
Heflin chastises Corey for not engaging in the bout, having already wasted a minute with this act, and all he receives for it is Corey making a jerking motion with his left hand at about waist level, smirking all the while.
Eryk Masters: That’s just downright rude.
Heflin’s had enough, apparently, and points out that Corey, technically, isn’t in the ring.
Heflin: Get in the ring! 1! 2! 3!
The awfully quick count has Corey hop down to the canvas, stretch out over the top ropes, and then casually stroll to meet Gordon face-to-face in the center. Henry backs up, leaving some space between them, and offers his hand.
Other Guy: A sign of respect from the young newcomer to this industry…and Corey accepts it.
Laz shakes Gordon’s hand, nods, and the two back off, circling one another. Gordon looks to surprise Corey by shooting in for an amateur takedown, but Lazarus replies by quickly stepping back and pivoting on his left foot, spinning around the drive the sole of his boot directly into Gordon’s face. The impact rocks Henry to the mat on his side, clutching at his face, and he rolls to the floor, checking his nose for any signs of blood.
Eryk Masters: Not even 5 minutes in and there’s already a chance that Gordon’s nose could be broken.
Other Guy: It wouldn’t surprise me if it was, actually.
Heflin slides out of the ring himself, immediately walking over to Gordon and checking on him, as Corey backs into his corner again, reclining over the top ropes. Price jumps up onto the apron beside him, rubbing his shoulders briefly, and they jaw quickly about something, the content of which the cameras don’t pick up. Heflin rolls back into the ring as Gordon walks over to the ring steps, rubbing the bridge of his nose, and Corey quickly drops down from the top ropes and speeds towards him, causing Gordon to jump back onto the floor, holding his arms up in defense. Corey, though, sits on the middle rope and pushes the top rope up, motioning for Gordon to re-enter.
Other Guy: See? It’s great that such a huge movie star like Corey FUCKING Lazarus is willing to hold the door open for the common man.
Hesitantly, Gordon complies, walking up the ring steps and slowly stepping through the ropes, not once taking his eyes off of Corey. The two back up and meet in the center of the ring again, Laz with his hands on his hips and Gordon with one hand ready to grapple and the other ready to throw fists. Corey, tonguing the inside of his cheek, shrugs his shoulders, and then extends a hand of his own, looking to the crowd for approval.
Eryk Masters: Some respect by the self-proclaimed Living Icon…
Henry slowly reaches out and shakes it, quickly stepping back as Lazarus stomps the canvas. Corey drops to a knee, arms widespread, and flashes his trademark devilish grin to Gordon, prompting the Lazarus supporters in the crowd to chant for him.
Lazarus Fans: L-A-Z!! L-A-Z!! L-A-Z!! L-A-Z!!
Corey jumps up to his feet and backs up, ready to fight, and Gordon, this time, puts his hands on his own hips, nodding and letting out a little chuckle.
Eryk Masters: Oh, just get the match going already!
Other Guy: It’s all part of his gameplan, Eryk! Psyche Gordon out, make him keep guessing what’s going to happen, and then? Strike!
The two circle one another again, and, once more, Gordon dives in for a takedown. Corey, though, leapfrogs over him and slaps him on the back, the sound echoing throughout the arena. Gordon winces as he rises slowly, turning to face the L-A-Z, and Corey begins moving in slow motion, looking for an amateur takedown on an imaginary opponent towards a neutral corner before rolling forward and kipping up to his feet. He gives Henry a thumbs up and a quick golf clap, though, and the two circle once more.
Eryk Masters: Neither man wanting to make the first mistake tonight, though an argument could be made that Gordon’s already made one or two.
This time it’s Lazarus being the aggressor, as he shoots in for a takedown on Gordon. Henry’s weight advantage is apparent, though, as Corey barely budges him. Gordon quickly shows off his strength advantage, too, by lifting Corey off of the canvas and throwing him across the ring to a big POP. Corey scurries under the bottom rope to the floor, kicking the ring steps over, and paces with heavy feet, shaking his head.
Price rushes over to his client, and the two begin talking strategy.
Price: Listen, Core, you’re a whole lot faster than he is, right?
Price: And probably smarter, right?
Lazarus: Yeah, yeah, I dig…
Price: So use those features, man!
Corey playfully pinches Gregory Price’s cheek, giving him a wink, and then rolls into the ring, quickly rising to his feet.
Other Guy: Sometimes? All a man needs is a little reassurance from a good friend.
Eryk Masters: Especially if that good friend handles all of their business ventures for them.
The two men circle one another AGAIN, with Corey stopping briefly to throw a quick low kick into Gordon’s thigh, sending the husky southerner backing away with a limp before he shakes it out. Both men go in for a collar-and-elbow tie-up, but Laz faked it, proving so as he ducks under Henry’s arm and pops back up with a pair of elbows to the side of Gordon’s head. Henry gets rocked with a third elbow to the head, and Corey whips him into the ropes.
Eryk Masters: Off the ropes, Gordon ducks a back elbow, reversal with Corey off the ropes now, back body drop telegraphed by Gordon and Laz flips over him, whip into the ropes by Corey…
Laz goes for a high roundhouse kick that Gordon ducks, quickly turning and charging forward with a lariat as Henry rebounds off the opposite set of ropes. Gordon ducks under that, as well, and turns just as Corey does, snapping off a picture-perfect powerslam before hooking the leg.
Corey kicks out, turning away from Henry and holding his lower back.
Eryk Masters: A poor move by Corey Lazarus, offering up his back to Henry Gordon.
Henry wastes little time, reaching forward and locking on a reverse chinlock, wrapping his free hand around his wrist for leverage purposes. The camera zooms in on Corey’s face, the look of self disappointment apparent more than any kind of pain that Gordon may be inflicting.
Eryk Masters: He cannot be too happy with himself for that one.
Other Guy: It’s a complete rookie mistake, Eryk, and with 12 years under his belt? I’m surprised Corey made it.
Gordon re-works his hands, locking them together and cranking on Laz’s neck a bit as he leans forward, pulling himself to a knee in the process.
Other Guy: And it looks like Henry Gordon may be making a rookie mistake of his own by not cinching the chinlock in as tight as he should.
Gordon, apparently, has super-sensitive hearing, as he turns his hips and interlocks his fingers to really lock in the reverse chinlock as Lazarus begins pushing himself up to his knees, forcing Henry up in the process. A pair of elbows to Gordon’s midsection don’t break the hold, though, but it does allow for Corey to reach up and hook Henry by the back of the head with one hand as he pushes out on Gordon’s nearest leg with the other, rolling to his side with Gordon in tow and locking him down with an inside cradle variation, hooking Henry’s legs with his own.
Eryk Masters: And Gordon just manages to kick out!
Both men quickly get to their feet, and Laz’s eyes fill with rage at the rookie’s insolence, resulting in some bad intentions.
Other Guy: Laz looks PISSED!
BAM! A straight elbow to the face sends Gordon reeling back into the corner, followed by Laz charging in with a running Yakuza Kick, letting the bottom of his boot scrape across Gordon’s cheek. Corey grabs the top rope to steady himself and unloads with high roundhouse kick after high roundhouse kick to Henry’s face and chest.
Dennis Heflin: Get him off the ropes! 1! 2! 3!
Laz backs up a few steps and nails a rolling solebutt to Gordon’s ribs.
Dennis Heflin: 4!
Corey grabs Henry by his hair and pulls him out of the corner, driving a pair of clinch knees into his face, and then holds Gordon by the back of his head, bending him over as he unleashes step kick after step kick to his forehead and cheek, firing them off in rapid succession.
Other Guy: HOW IS GORDON EVEN STILL STANDING?
BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! Henry drops to a knee and Laz backs off, quickly catching his wind before he hits the ropes, charges forward, and uses Gordon’s raised knee as a springboard to spin around to his back, drilling his own knee into the back of Henry’s head.
Eryk Masters: Coming Attractions!
Henry falls forward as Corey stretches out his leg and walks around in a circle quick, a minor limp in his step before he dives onto Gordon, shoving his forearm into his face.
Gordon kicks out!!!
Other Guy: That was just a plain old-fashioned sign of disrespect after that insane kick flurry.
Eryk Masters: It looks like Corey could have possibly done some damage to himself with it.
Henry rolls to his side, his eyes merely floating in his skull, but he finds the clarity of mind to then roll out to the floor, collapsing at the bottom of the entrance ramp and holding his head.
Eryk Masters: It may have been worth it, though, because Gordon looks COMPLETELY out of it.
Other Guy: What the hell is Price doing?
Gregory Price pushes one of the ringside attendants off of their chair, takes it, and slides it into the ring as Dennis Heflin starts his count.
Dennis Heflin: 1! 2!
Corey picks the chair up and unfolds it, positioning it near the ropes by the bottom of the ramp.
Dennis Heflin: 3! 4! 5!
Other Guy: It looks like Corey’s talking to Air Traffic Control…
In the ring, Lazarus uses his hand like the brim of a hat, shielding light from his eyes, as he measures the distance between the ring and Henry Gordon on the outside. He holds his arms out to his sides as he backs up to the opposite set of ropes…
Dennis Heflin: 6! 7!
…and then charges forward, using the chair as a springboard to soar over the top rope…
Other Guy: …because HOLLYWOOD AIRLINES is cleared for take off!
…and corkscrews his body in a full 360-degree rotation as he somersaults forward, connecting with a somersault plancha onto Gordon that sends both men down to the floor.
Fans: HOLY SHIT!! HOLY SHIT!! HOLY SHIT!! HOLY SHIT!!
Eryk Masters: For as arrogant as he is, nobody can doubt the athleticism of Corey Lazarus.
Heflin, bewildered, is forced to break his count, as per the time-honored rules of professional wrestling refereeing. Corey rises to his feet on the floor, walking off whatever damage he’s sustained with his slight limp aggravated, and then rolls back into the ring, sitting backwards on the chair like he were AC Slater to catch his breath.
Dennis Heflin: 1! 2! 3!
Gordon stirs on the floor, crawling over to the nearest barricade.
Dennis Heflin: 4! 5!
Henry pulls himself up to his feet, stumbling up against the ring apron.
Dennis Heflin: 6! 7! 8!
Gordon rolls into the ring as Corey rises from the chair, tossing the furniture back out of the ring to Price. Gordon rises to his hands and knees and crawls towards Laz, but Corey nails a swift soccer kick to the crown of his head, stunning him even more so than he already was.
Eryk Masters: Did you HEAR that contact?
Other Guy: Yeah. It was pretty brutal.
Eryk Masters: Henry Gordon could even have a concussion after that one.
Laz leans down and applies a front facelock, looking to drag Gordon to the center of the ring, but Henry throws some wild rights that connect with Corey’s ribs, weakening his hold, before tripping up Corey by hooking the back of his knees, rolling forward with a jackknife pin.
Other Guy: And a DEFIANT kickout by Laz.
Using the momentum from him kicking out, though, the Hollywood Kid locks another front facelock on Gordon, rolling over so that both men are on their stomachs before bridging forward, cranking Henry’s neck back at a disgusting angle. Heflin gets in close, asking Gordon if he wants to submit, but Henry refuses.
Dennis Heflin: Do you wanna give up?
Henry Gordon: NO!!!
Corey loosens the hold and then tightens it again, the extra cranking forcing grunts of anguish from Gordon’s throat.
Eryk Masters: Oh, c’mon, Corey, he’s just a kid! He grew up watching your movies!
Other Guy: All the more reason for Laz to rough him up a bit. Not all of your heroes are going to be noble or ideal, Eryk.
Gordon, however, proves himself wise beyond his lack of experience would suggest, displaying one facet that even the most wily of veterans can forget: ring awareness. Henry reaches out to his side, grabbing the bottom rope and forcing the break.
Dennis Heflin: He’s got the ropes, break it up! 1! 2!
Corey refuses to yield, though.
Dennis Heflin: Break it! 3! 4!
He does, though, but quickly rolls back over to the starting position, locking on another front facelock. This time, however, he doesn’t bridge forward, but uses his control of Gordon’s head and neck to bring him to his feet.
Eryk Masters: It looks like he may be going for a Brainbuster…
Corey barely lifts Henry off of his feet before having to put him back down. He throws a pair of fists into Gordon’s midsection, looking to knock some of the fight out of him, and then goes for another lift, but Henry, again, fights it off, throwing his weight back and landing on a knee. Corey backs up a step but can’t manage to cover up as Henry rises with a BRUTAL collection of rights and lefts, a final right hook sending Corey spinning around so that his back is to Gordon.
Eryk Masters: Laz is out on his feet!
Gordon quickly runs the ropes and connects with a STIFF lariat, sending the Hollywood Kid flipping over himself and landing on the canvas with his stomach. Gordon doesn’t cover, though, as Corey immediately forces himself to a knee, still completely dazed.
Other Guy: Gordon off the ropes again…LARIAT NUMBER TWO!!
Once more, the impact causes Corey to flip backwards, but this time Henry drops to a knee, holding his head and neck, catching his wind for a moment.
Eryk Masters: Aaaaand…Gordon covers!
3…LAZ KICKS OUT!!!
A POP of surprise from the fans, neither in support of Laz nor Gordon, and Henry can’t believe it, looking wide-eyed at Dennis Heflin.
Eryk Masters: After the impact of those lariats I’m surprised Corey even knows what year it is anymore, let alone kicked out!
Other Guy: Henry’s making some rookie mistakes tonight, quite honestly, and it’s not against somebody else who’s inexperienced, it’s against a 12-year veteran.
Henry gets to his feet and drops a pair of boots to Corey’s head and chest each, followed up by an elbow drop and another lateral press.
Corey gets his shoulder up and rolls onto the apron quickly, holding the middle rope as he pulls himself up to a seated position.
Other Guy: Smart move by Laz. You can’t be pinned if you’re not in the ring.
Eryk Masters: But you can get counted out, if you’re not paying attention.
Gordon saunters over to the ropes, reaching over the top and grabbing Corey by the head. He brings him to his feet and plants a fist between his eyes, earning a quick scolding from Heflin about the use of a closed fist, and then goes for a suplex back in, but Corey floats over and lands behind him, driving a pair of elbows into the back of his head before turning him around and whipping him into the corner.
Eryk Masters: He could be looking for the Reel to Reel…!
Laz charges in but gets caught off-guard as Gordon rushes him, catching him with a quick release overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Corey quickly rolls up to his feet from the impact and gets drilled with a pair of rights.
Eryk Masters: Henry Gordon with the whip to the corner, NO! Laz reverses!
Gordon gets sent back-first into the opposite corner, the impact shaking the whole ring, and Corey charges in, connecting with a leaping Busaiku-style knee to Gordon’s face, the impact of which sends Laz tumbling onto the apron, barely able to land on his feet.
Other Guy: REEL TO REEL!!
Henry stumbles out of the corner, dropping to a knee for a moment before forcing himself to his feet, clutching at his jaw, and then turns as Lazarus springboards off the top rope, soaring through the air towards him.
Other Guy: Diving forearm…!
Eryk Masters: GORDON CATCHES HIM!!
Henry ducks under Corey’s forearm and catches him over his shoulder, quickly charging into the corner and smashing Laz’s back against the turnbuckle pads before turning around, driving Corey down HARD with a vicious spinebuster.
Eryk Masters: OKLAHOMA STAMPEDE-STYLE SPINEBUSTER!!
Gordon wastes no time here, hooking Corey’s leg and putting his weight on his chest.
3…COREY KICKS OUT!!!
Other Guy: I thought for SURE that it was over with that one.
Gordon rises up to a knee, wiping sweat out of his eyes, as Heflin makes it a point to let him know that Corey kicked out at 2. Henry nods, catching his breath, and brings Corey to his knees as he, himself, stands up straight.
Eryk Masters: Gordon back on the offensive after that Stampede-style Spinebuster…
A pair of quick jabs meet their mark on Corey’s face before Gordon brings him all the way up to his feet, locking his right arm in an overhook and stepping behind him to get Laz in an abdominal stretch. Gordon fumbles a bit with his leg placement, trying to make it so Corey has no way of escaping.
Eryk Masters: For somebody as overall inexperienced as Henry Gordon is, fans, he’s shining bright in this match by using what few skills he already has.
Gordon still looks for proper leg placement as Corey begins moving, trying to get out of the predicament he’s in. Luckily for Henry, though, he still has the standing armbar locked in place, prompting Heflin to ask Laz if he submits.
Other Guy: While that may be true about him, don’t overlook the fact that this is now the second submission hold that Gordon’s looked to win with that he hasn’t been able to lock in fully.
Just as OG finishes his sentence, though, Gordon locks his leg around Corey’s, preventing him from going anywhere. He then leans back, stretching Laz out, and Corey lets out a scream of torment before gritting his teeth.
Dennis Heflin: Laz, do you give up?
No reply from Corey, though, as he desperately tries to focus on being elsewhere, ignoring the stretching and possible tearing of his abdominal and pectoral muscles. A growing chatter of noise emanates from the crowd nearest the entrance curtain, causing many heads to turn in that direction.
Eryk Masters: What…oh, c’mon, what’s he doing out here?
The cameras cut to the top of the entrance ramp as Thomas Manchester Black stands still, his arms over his chest, with a smug look on his face at Laz’s pain. Back to the ring, and Gordon’s REALLY wrenching the abdominal stretch in, leaning back to increase its effect. Gordon starts to lose his footing, though, and loosens the hold just enough for Laz to place a quick back heel kick into his shin with his free leg, causing Gordon to loosen the hold even more. Corey takes advantage and twists into Gordon with a flash elbow to the jaw, breaking the hold and allowing him to take Henry down, floating over with a jackknife pin.
Gordon emphatically kicks out at 2, allowing both men to scramble to their feet, and Henry meets Corey with a pair of big right hands before dropping him to a knee with a STIFF forearm to the jaw.
Other Guy: …that may have been a bad move…
Corey jumps up and drives an even STIFFER elbow into Henry’s face, sending the bigger man reeling back a few steps, but it doesn’t end there. Lazarus unleashes with elbow after elbow, throwing in a pair of European uppercuts and some clinch knees, forcing Gordon into the corner, covering up. Corey stops for a minute, piefacing the young lion, and backs up.
Corey Lazarus: COME ON, HANK!! FIGHT!!
Elbow. Elbow. Knee. Elbow. Heflin admonishes Corey for keeping Gordon on the ropes and Laz pulls Henry out of the corner and kicks him in the knee with a low thrust kick, followed up by a mid roundhouse to his ribs, and then rocking him by sandwiching his head with a knee to the jaw and a downward elbow to the crown of his head.
Eryk Masters: COMBO #5!!
Corey quickly hooks him in a side half nelson and cradles his inside leg…
Eryk Masters: Box Office Bomb…NO!!!
…but can’t lift Gordon up for it! Lazarus backs off, holding his ribs, and drops to a knee.
Other Guy: It looks like that abdominal stretch took more out of Laz than we all thought.
Gordon recovers from the barrage, though not fully, and charges forward as Laz rises to his feet. Corey ducks under a lariat attempt and pivots as Henry does, leaping up with a beautiful Boomerang Kick attempt…
Eryk Masters: END CREDITS!!
…that misses the mark, wholly due to Gordon ducking under it. Corey scrambles to his feet, looking to block whatever Gordon may throw at him, and Henry charges in for another lariat attempt, but Laz launches forward with a thrust kick to the shoulder, the impact causing Henry to stumble backwards against the ropes nearest the ramp. TMB slowly, casually, makes his way down the ramp, his eyes focused on Corey. Lazarus finally sees TMB coming towards the ring, though, and charges towards Gordon, but Henry ducks down and drops Corey over the top rope and onto the floor.
Other Guy: THIS…this can’t be good.
TMB cracks his knuckles as he makes his way towards Corey, but Gordon turns and sees him coming, rolling out of the ring and rushing over to him.
Eryk Masters: What’s Henry Gordon doing?
TMB looks to cock back his fist as Corey rises to his knees, but Gordon gets in between them, holding up a hand to Black.
Henry Gordon: Wait! Wait! Not like this! I ain’t gonna let this happen, man! Please! I got ‘im where I want ‘im, lemme do it myself, okay?
Thomas hesitates as Corey gets to his feet, backing up to the apron. He shrugs and crosses his arms over his chest, nodding.
Other Guy: It looks like Gordon just convinced TMB to not get him disqualified!
Eryk Masters: Good. TMB and Laz have had issues since Corey returned to SHOOT Project, some of them stemming from former SHOOT Soldier and common friend Eli Storm, and there hasn’t been a Revolution since that hasn’t seen either man get involved with the other one. Henry wants to win on his own, he doesn’t want TMB to get involved, and that’s a great thing about this aspiring youngster.
Other Guy: It could also be an incredibly stupid thing, at least for tonight.
Corey rolls under the bottom rope and Gordon does the same, with both men rising to their feet in the middle of the ring. Lazarus looks up the ramp at TMB and then at Gordon, nodding, and the two quickly shake hands to a respectful applause from the crowd. Laz then drills Gordon with a forearm to the jaw and Henry fires back with huge right hand. Forearm by Corey. Right hand by Gordon. Back elbow by Laz. HEADBUTT by Gordon. Lazarus unleashes a series of forearms to Gordon before grabbing the back of his head, popping out a pair of clinch knees, and then going back to the Kawada-style step kicks to his face. After about five of them, though, Gordon catches Laz’s foot, forces himself to his feet, and nails a HUGE right hand that sends Lazarus reeling back against the ropes.
Eryk Masters: What a turn of events! Gordon’s getting the upper hand in a strike exchange with the former Iron Fist champion!
Other Guy: Don’t speak too soon, Eryk!
Lazarus rushes off of the ropes with a PERFECT Yakuza Kick, sending into the opposite ropes. He comes charging out with a BIG forearm to the jaw, dropping Corey to a knee, and then hits the ropes again, drilling a gnarly BIG BOOT to Corey’s face that sends him down flat to the canvas. The fans are firmly behind Gordon now as he hits the ropes again, rebounding and dropping back-first across Corey’s midsection with a perfect and nasty Senton.
Eryk Masters: MASSIVE Senton Splash by Henry Gordon!
Other Guy: COREY KICKED OUT!!! COREY KICKED OUT!!!
Eryk Masters: AND GORDON CAN’T BELIEVE IT!!
Corey rolls to his side, clutching at his ribs as he curls into a fetal position, and Henry wastes little time, grabbing Laz by the head and bringing him up to his feet before doubling him over with a boot to the midsection, placing Corey’s head between his legs.
Eryk Masters: He’s going for a powerbomb!
Henry muscles Corey up and snaps him down onto his back with a SICKENING powerbomb, backing away to catch his breath, and the fans go wild for him.
Fans: HEN-RY GOR-DON!! **clap, clap, clapclapclap** HEN-RY GOR-DON!! **clap, clap, clapclapclap**
Other Guy: Can you believe these people are cheering for him?!
Eryk Masters: After the kind of fortitude he’s displayed since debuting in SHOOT Project? Oh hell yes I can!
Fans: HEN-RY GOR-DON!! **clap, clap, clapclapclap** HEN-RY GOR-DON!! **clap, clap, clapclapclap**
Henry smiles, legitimately joyed to be cheered by so many people, and then crawls forward, dropping across Corey with a lateral press.
Other Guy: LAZ KICKED OUT!!! LAZ KICKED OUT!!!
Eryk Masters: THIS, though, I can’t believe!
Henry wastes little time, though, and rises back to his feet, holding up a finger, signalling for one more.
Eryk Masters: One more should do the trick!
Gordon grabs Laz by his head again, bringing him and hunching him over. He lifts Corey up for another powerbomb attempt, but…
Other Guy: COREY SLIDES OUT!!
Gordon, amazed, can’t get his hands up in time to block a stiff FACE CHOP, the impact of which turns him around the other way. Laz drills him with a stiff elbow to the back of the head, dropping him down to a knee, and Corey hooks him for a cradle backdrop suplex, quickly lifting him and spiking him on the back of his head and neck to the mat.
Eryk Masters: CINEPLEX!!
He covers, hooking both legs.
TMB stops standing by and rushes into the ring.
**DING DING DING**
Corey stands up, clutching his ribs, and Heflin hoists his arm up in victory as "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" cues back up. No sooner than that happens, though, and Thomas Manchester Black clubs him from behind, sending Corey sprawling.
Samantha Coil: The winner of the match…COREY LAZARUS!!!
TMB stomps boot after boot into Corey’s back and head as the L-A-Z desperately tries to cover up, but to little avail.
Eryk Masters: Black is just DEMOLISHING Corey right now!
Other Guy: Of course he is. He’s easy pickings after a match like that!
TMB locks Corey’s legs in an Indian Deathlock variation, eliciting several boos from the crowd as they know what’s coming next. He looks around the arena, shaking his head with a condescending smile forming on his face, and then reaches down to grab Corey’s arms, slapping him on the ribs first to cause an involuntary reaction of bringing his arms towards his body.
Other Guy: Queen City Stomp…
Eryk Masters: …BUT GREGORY PRICE HAS SEEN ENOUGH!!!
Price rushes into the ring and punches TMB in the side of the head. It has little effect on TMB, causing him to merely recoil from instinct, but it serves its purpose: getting TMB off of Laz.
Thomas Manchester Black: Really, motherfucker? REALLY?
TMB goes after Price now, grabbing him by his tie as he rears back his fist…
Other Guy: I’d be careful, if I were TMB. That tie has got to be worth at LEAST a pair of Benjamins.
…but Henry Gordon grabs his arm!
Eryk Masters: Gordon’s…defending Laz and Price?!
TMB turns and Gordon lets his arm go, giving him a quick push. TMB, bewildered, shakes his head as Gordon stands his ground.
Eryk Masters: Laz is getting back up…
TMB shrugs and takes a swing at Gordon, but Henry ducks it, leaving TMB open for a surprise high roundhouse kick to the side of his head from the barely-with-it Corey Lazarus. TMB goes down and rolls out of the ring, standing up on the floor and holding the side of his head as he backs up the ramp. Gordon turns to Laz and Laz to Gordon with Price checking on his prized client. Laz pats Gordon on the shoulder, nodding, and the Hollywood pair exit the ring, their focus switching between TMB as he nears the entrance curtain and Henry Gordon in the ring, recovering from the match he just had.
We find ourselves back in the arena, and there is no cut to the entrance. In fact, music is already playing and is dying out. In the center of the ring is the feature of our, and the fans’, attention: Laura Seton. She has on her pink "PG Princess" shirt, white shorts and matching Nikes. Her hair is down and around her waist sparkling with every different camera angle is the Sin City Championship and in her hands a SHOOT mic. The crowd’s cheers give her a satisfied smile, though the cheers too fade out as she lifts the mic.
Laura: I come out here tonight when I really don’t have to. What I have to say may not have THE utmost importance and could have been done in the back, but you know what? It’s been quite awhile since I’ve been able to converse with you all. So tell me Las Vegas; how the heck are you?
A loud cheer erupts from the crowd.
Laura: It’s been awhile since I’ve had a legit reason to come out here and speak. I don’t really find it worth running my mouth when I’m on the short end of the stick repeatedly. After all, it becomes rather difficult to believe someone saying they’re top notch when they’re flopping around at the bottom of the barrel.
She brushes her hair to the right as she looks up and all around the Epicenter, almost in awe.
Laura: I heard a line yesterday watching the big auto race and I think it’s worth paraphrasing because it’s true. SHOOT Project… is… "The Greatest Spectacle in Wrestling."
Again a healthy cheer goes up, but Laura lifts her empty hand to quickly quiet them.
Laura: That’s why I’m proud to stand before you as Sin City Champion once again. It takes quite an athlete to compete here and blah, blah, blah. You’ve heard it all about the competition level. It’s why being a champion here means more than anywhere else. Being a champion here means you’re working your backside off. Even after my hot start here, things became difficult. Now, I may sound like some inspirational speaker for a minute, so I apologize.
She chuckles before starting to slowly pace around the ring.
Laura: If you ever wondered about stagnating at your job and feeling like you suddenly mean nothing, don’t. I was on a horrible cold streak. I was better off finding a needle in a haystack than finding a win. I could have easily thrown a fit. I could have gotten up and walked out. However, I was taught better as a kid. I was told that in the end, everything works out. You just have to believe in yourself. You have to keep working hard in the off-hours to prove you want to keep that job. That’s exactly what I did. I learned more moves and refined what I already had. I got the message I had to find a way to start winning and show I could keep up here. I knew I had to earn everything back again. I fought hard against Jaime in March. I was rewarded with a Sin City Championship match against Dan Stein. Fighting the odds, I won.
The fans lightly cheer, knowing she has more to say. Yet, she stands quietly for yet another few seconds before speaking with a softer tone.
Laura: Stagnation isn’t the end IF you can be patient and do the little things. People will notice and you’ll get your just due. A number of people thought that win was a fluke and I’d be exposed during the battle royale. I fought with my "20 Minutes of Terror" a couple weeks ago, and I retained. While I probably wasn’t a true favorite—
Her voice tails off while she glances in to the crowd. Patches of cheers and shouts of support for her are heard, as the rest of the audience awaits her next words.
Laura: After reviewing it, the consensus seems to say I’m back. People have been saying that my effort was deserving of the win and that I more than deserve to be Sin City Champion. I’m happy to see I’m still appreciated by fans—all of you that is. It’s with that appreciation in mind that I’m going to act with class. It’s an honor to wear this belt—but I feel it’s bush to try using the belt to draw attention to yourself. There’s no need for anything like that. I’ll let the belt speak for itself with it’s shiny glimmer as I wear it around my waist to the ring. I’ll let my actions in the ring speak to my being champion. I’ll raise it after a victory to celebrate but otherwise, I’ll be a class act with it. So with that all said, I’m sure you’re all wondering whom I’m going to call out.
Another cheer sounds, as the fans eagerly await hearing what great match they can expect for the SCC.
Laura: I don’t mean to disappoint, but I’m not going to do that. I’ve never been about calling anyone out. Ever. If someone wants ME? They can charge after me. Otherwise, it’s open game. Piper. Laz. We can invite back Dan Stein. We can open things up and have a go with Kenji or we can try coaxing Loco Martinez out of retirement again—
Having booed at all the prior evil names, the crowd erupts at the Loco mention, giving Laura a smile and laugh.
Laura: I wouldn’t bet on Loco, but you never know. No matter what, this is wide open and if someone wants it, they can try to get it. Whomever tries had best be careful. You enter the ring with Laura Seton, you better ready for "20 Minutes of Terror."
The scene fades in on the titanatron. The crowd begins to boo loudly, as it’s Jester Smiles seated on the edge of a hotel bed. He wears the "Long Live The King" shirt with faded jeans, and he simply grins at the camera.
Jester Smiles: Soooo, I’m not going to be at the show this week. No real reason. I did some stuff to Crippler, he did some stuff to me, I think we are pretty good for a bit, right? I mean, what, I could ruin his match with Roddy Piper or something, but nah, I’m gonna let him have that one.
The crowd boos again.
Eryk Masters: Surprise surprise. Probably too afraid to face Crippler again after being forced to tap out.
Jester Smiles: Sooo, here’s the deal guys. Crippler got me good last week. I mean, I’m kinda shocked at myself for thinking I was actually going to have my full match with El Asso Wipo. But, you know what, meh. I got the win, thanks to Crippler. Sure, he beat me up a bit, but a W is a W, amirite?!
Of course I am. So, no, Crippler, you don’t have to watch your back. You don’t have to be afraid. You can have your match tonight. I won’t do a damn thing to you. I’m gonna watch your match from the comfort of my own hotel room. I’m gonna watch you, more than likely, destroy Peter Piper or whatever, because, let’s face it, you’re really good, and she’s…well, I don’t even know who the fuck she is.
But keep something in the back of your head, while you are SOOO focused on me and only me. No matter what you do tonight, no matter what you did last Revolution, and no matter what you do at RISE, more on that in a second, you have already lost.
You got me to tap out. Congrats. Good for you.
I’ve opened your wife’s eyes to the business you are in. I’ve planted seeds of doubt in your marriage. I’ve hurt something real, something beautiful in your eyes.
I’ve corrupted something of yours.
So, no matter what, who really wins here,Crippler? Who’s really got the upper hand? You could get even. You could do more than make me tap out. You could injure me. Cripple me. Kill me.
You could attack what family I have, because I do have loved ones.
But if you did, you’d be like me. Like the man who assaulted your wife. Like the man who planted seeds of doubt in your marriage
The crowd is booing loudly, so loud in fact that they have to turn the speakers up so that the screen’s audio can be heard.
Jester Smiles: Here’s what’s gonna happen at RISE. It’s gonna be Lunatikk Crippler in one corner and Jester Smiles in the other. No cages or ladders, nothing like that. However, there are no rules in this match. Do whatever you have to do to beat the other man and keep him down for a three count.
Or make him quit.
You want to win, Crippler. Show me how much you want to win. Show me how nasty you can get. Show me how much you want to kill me.
And prove your wife right.
Jester winks at the camera as it fades to black.
Samantha Coil: The following contest is scheduled for one fall…. introducing first, from South Bend, Indiana… weighing in at two hundred thirty eight pounds… he is the Whole Fucked Up Show…LUUUNATIIIKKK… CRRRRRIPPLER!!!
The familiar strains of "I Wupped Batman’s Ass" blast from the arena’s sound system and the man behind the music emerges from the curtain.. but something seems a little off tonight. He’s definitely not his usual self, his gait toward the ring one of absolute focus and determination with more than a touch of anger in his eyes. He seems to be ignoring the fans as he makes his way into the ring, leaning on the ropes and looking at the ramp.
Eryk Masters: You know, I’ve seen the former Sin City champ focused and fired up, but tonight he seems a lot more so. The question is- where exactly IS his focus? Is it on his opponent tonight, or on Jester Smiles, the man who has been spending a lot of time in Crippler’s head, the man he’s going to be getting into the ring with at RISE?
Other Guy: Tell ya what, E.. if he’s not focused on his opponent tonight, he’s in for a world of hurt. This is no lame-duck enhancement talent he’s going to be staring down. He’s got his hands full tonight for damn sure. And as for Smiles, when those two finally mix it up at RISE, it’s gonna be violent, it’s gonna be bloody and it’s gonna be freakin’ B..E..A.. yooooutiful.
Samantha Coil: And his opponent… from Los Angeles, California… weighing in at two hundred twenty pounds… PIPERRRR….FUUUUUURY!!!
The staccato chant erupts over the speakers…
The pounding opening rhythm of "Six Times Dead (16.6)" erupts as Piper Fury emerges from the back, holding Precious high over her head in her left hand. Her eyes are fixated on Crippler as she makes her way down the ramp.
Eryk Masters: And here comes the hellcat herself, Piper Fury. Someone who’s got her own demons to deal with right now. Namely the rumors that one Johnny Napalm has got his eyes on her. After what she did to him, I wouldn’t blame him for wanting to show up and get some payback- especially with the challenge Fury laid out not all that long ago for the two of them to meet at RISE.
Other Guy: And just like her opponent, she’s got to put all that out of her mind if she wants to walk away with the W in this one. Lunatikk Crippler’s no Johnny Napalm. He’s a former Sin City champ and a legend in his own right within the SHOOT Project. You come into a match against the Whole Fucked Up Show at less than a hundred percent focus, you’re screwed. Royally.
Both competitors stare each other down from opposite ends of the ring, neither one saying a word. Piper places Precious outside the ring and motions for Crippler to come closer, almost as if taunting him. Referee Dean takes this as a sign that both wrestlers are ready and he calls for the bell. Both Piper and Crippler waste no time in clashing like two rams jockeying for dominance in the middle of the ring. Crippler gets a quick upper hand with a pair of jabs that rock Piper slightly off-guard, but she fires back with an elbow to the side of the head that staggers the former Sin City champion, leaving him open for Piper to catch him with a hiptoss that sends him to the mat and Piper gripping the arm and trying to manipulate the joint into an armlock… but Crippler quickly regains his vertical base and sends her into the ropes! Crippler waits for his opponent to rebound, laying her out with a thunderous clothesline! He doesn’t waste any time in grabbing her by the hair and pulling her vertical, hooking her head and trying to get her up for a suplex.. but Piper counters and elevates Crippler, taking him over with the same suplex he was trying to execute! Piper quickly jumps on the offensive, mounting Crippler and raining down a series of vicious forearm shots to the forehead, but it doesn’t take long before the wily veteran catches a split second of relief and manages to turn things around, catching the arm and trying to hyperextend the elbow!
Eryk Masters: Crippler’s going for an early submission in this one! He wants to finish Fury off fast, but it might be way too early to be looking for the killshot. From what we’ve seen of Piper Fury, something tells me it’s going to take a lot more than an armlock to finish this hellion off.
Other Guy: Never underestimate the power of the armbar. Go ahead.. ask Miesha Tate if she ever recovered from the last one she was on the receiving end of. It may be early, but he’s playing it smart- he’s working on that wing right off the bat. Piper’s got some mad striking skulls, but it’s tough to throw a wicked punch with a wounded arm.
In the ring, Piper has managed to get herself vertical and throws a couple of haymakers, getting Crippler to release the armbar. She shrugs her shoulder, getting the feeling back into the arm, her eyes widening. She charges Crippler, but he’s a step ahead and kicks her in the midsection, hooking her quickly and executing a textbook suplex, rolling through and getting back up to his feet before taking Piper down with a vicious DDT! Crippler mounts Piper’s back and grabs her by the hair, yanking her head up and locking in a nasty crossface, leaning back and putting immense pressure on her neck and back… referee Dean quickly intervenes, admonishing Crippler for the use of the hair and ordering him to release the hold. Crippler shakes his head and Dean starts counting… 1…. 2… 3…. at the four count, Crippler releases the crossface, but punctuates it with a forearm to the back of the neck! He starts to yell "HOW DO YOU LIKE THAT, JESTER?" as he lays a pair of wicked stomps onto Piper’s back! Crippler pulls Piper up to her feet and scoops her up, looking at the corner as if thinking about setting her into the Tree Of Woe.. but Piper manages to slide off and sends Crippler into the corner hard, waiting for him to turn around before charging and rocking him with an elbow to the side of the head, following it up with a bulldog!
Eryk Masters: Okay, now I’m convinced.. Lunatikk Crippler has finally gone off the deep end. Calling Piper Fury Jester? What the…
Other Guy: Best not to go there, E. Just let it be.
Piper shakes off the cobwebs and waits for her opponent to get up to his feet, which he’s doing quite slowly right now.. and as he does, Piper is waiting to whip him into the ropes, launching herself at him with a Thesz press that sends the former champ right back down to the mat, Piper on top assaulting him with a wicked flurry of rights that are definitely softening Crippler up! Dean is right in the thick of things, giving Piper a warning and starting to count… 1… 2.. Piper seems to be ignoring the warning… 3… 4… just before the five count, Piper finally throws the last shot and pulls a dazed Crippler to his feet, kicking him square in the breadbasket and hooking him for a wicked gutwrench suplex that she turns into a cover…. she gets the one count before the kickout! Piper grabs an arm and is looking to lock in a Kimura, but Crippler manages to wrench free and reverses the move, turning it into a German suplex that sends Piper over the top rope and to the floor! The crowd is roaring right now as Crippler gets to his feet and takes a few deep breaths, getting his bearings as Dean starts the count… 1… 2… without any warning, Crippler mounts the turnbuckles and measures the recovering Piper, launching himself off the ropes…
Eryk Masters: Crippler’s looking to hit a Hail Mary right here!
Other Guy: Hell of a payout if he makes it, hell of a pain if he doesn’t!
Crippler hits the cross-body, sending Piper hard into the barricade! Piper’s clutching at her back, and Crippler’s picking up on that, whipping her hard into the ring apron and charging, landing a thunderous clothesline! Dean has restarted the count… 1… 2… 3… Crippler’s eyes widen and he whips Piper toward the ring post, but she turns it around and sends Crippler into the ring stairs! Crippler’s dazed and Piper is building up a head of steam…
Eryk Masters: She’s looking to hit the W.M.C!!!
Other Guy: It’ll be curtains for the Crip if she does.
Crippler gets out of the way at the last second, sending Piper into the ring stairs knee-first! 5… 6… Crippler grabs Piper and throws her into the ring, following right behind to end the count before Dean can make the ten. The former Sin City champ slowly approaches his fallen opponent, picking her up and hooking her leg, taking her over with a fisherman’s suplex! He’s got the cover.. 1… 2.. KICKOUT!!! The crowd is on its feet now, and this seems to get Crippler’s attention as he sends Piper into the ropes, bringing her down with a wicked spinebuster! Instead of going for the pin, he drags her to the middle of the ring, trying to lock in an armbar…
Eryk Masters: He’s going in for the kill!!!
Other Guy: Is Piper Fury about to be Bitchified??
Before he can lock it in, Piper swings a leg up and catches Crippler right behind the head, catching him off guard just long enough for the California hellcat to escape the lock and maneuver behind him… she clamps on a Dragon Sleeper, but she can’t sink it in enough to finish the job and Crippler gets to a knee and then pivots, clamping his arms around his opponent and taking her over with a German suplex! Piper slowly gets to her feet, but Crippler is there ready to floor her once again with a standing dropkick that sends her into the ropes, where Crippler sets himself to fire off a clothesline to send her over the ropes once again- but Piper ducks underneath and elevates Crippler, sending him over the rope- but his arm’s caught in the ring ropes!! Piper’s eyes widen and she sees the advantage, grabbing that trapped arm and clamping her legs around it, leaning back and torquing the elbow with everything she’s got…
Eryk Masters: Referee Dean’s got to step in and break this before that arm’s permanently damaged!
Other Guy: Crippler’s just dangling outside the ring, trying with everything he’s got to get some sort of traction- if he can just get his feet planted, he can lessen the potential surgery. Damn, when Piper said she was going to soften him up for Jester, she wasn’t kidding.
Sure enough, referee Dean quickly gets in and forcibly breaks the hold, working Crippler’s arm free from the ropes, sending him crashing to the floor. Piper gets to her feet and wastes no time getting in the face of the official, who’s not backing down in any way, shape or form. He orders Piper away from the ropes as he starts the count.. 1… 2… Crippler is slowly getting back to his feet, trying to work the circulation back into that ravaged arm and wincing in obvious pain. 3… 4… Piper’s not about to let this end with a countout, sliding underneath the ropes and making her way over to where Crippler is regaining his bearings.. she charges.. but Crippler’s telegraphed it and he launches himself into the charging Piper!!!
Eryk Masters: BLOOD DRIVE!!! He nearly broke Piper Fury in HALF!!!
Other Guy: Gutsy move on his part, but how much damage did it do to him at the same time?
Both wrestlers are down on the floor as Dean’s count is up to three… four…. five… six… Crippler is the first to his feet and he slides back into the ring… 7… Piper is up now and on rubber legs, but she gets back into the ring before the count to keep this match going. Neither one is anxious to charge into the fray once again, as both of them are regaining their bearings. But after a moment, they slowly engage once again, exchanging punches and forearm shots.. Crippler lands a stunning elbow and follows up with a DDT, planting Piper onto the canvas! He goes for a cover… ONE!! TWO!! THR- NO!! Piper gets a shoulder up at the last possible second…
.. and just as she manages to get to her feet, Crippler is getting himself into position.. he grabs Piper’s arm and lifts, inverting her for the split second before he drops her with THE CROSS!!! He goes for the cover.. ONE!!! TWO!!! THREE!!!
Samantha Coil: Here is your winner…. LUUUNATIKK… CRRRRIPPLER!!!!
Eryk Masters: What a Cross from out of nowhere! A hard-fought victory for the former Sin City champ, but a well-deserved one. Gotta give Piper Fury credit, she took everything he could dish out and returned it in spades, but in the end it just wasn’t enough. Very few have ever gotten up from that gutwrench tombstone.
Other Guy: True enough.. but the lingering question right now is- what kind of shape is Crippler going to be in for RISE? Especially with the damage inflicted on that arm of his- Piper just handed Jester Smiles his gameplan on a silver platter. She said she was going to soften him up for Smiles, and she might have done just that.
All of a sudden, the lights go out in the Epicenter, causing a stir among the crowd. The JumboTron flickers with static before the strains of Hollywood Undead’s "Been To Hell" boom throughout the arena. A man in a mask appears on the screen- a very familiar one with the SHOOT faithful. Considering who’s in the ring, this is definitely no coincidence.
Hello there, Piper… did you miss me? I certainly hope you didn’t think you had put me on the shelf for good. I’m much more resilient than you might think. I have been watching, listening, waiting for this moment for a long time- the second the karma comes full circle and I get my payback for everything you have done to me. You may have gotten the first shot, but rest assured you won’t get the last.
The lights come back on as the man is standing behind Fury wielding a baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire! He removes the mask to reveal the scarred face of Johnny Napalm!! His eyes are a picture of some seriously violent intentions as he sets himself to take a home-run swing with the bat- but just as he’s about to unload, Piper spots him out of the corner of her eye and dodges the swing! Napalm sets himself for a repeat, but Piper has already made her way out of the ring and is standing at the ringside area. Piper’s quickly snapped up Precious and has her left hand gripping the shaft of the brutal weapon tightly. Napalm motions to one of the attendants at ringside to toss him a microphone.
Johnny Napalm: That’s right, Piper. Run. Get away with whatever dignity you’ve still got. I have been waiting so long for this- a chance to finally pay you back for putting me in the hospital. You want to know what got me through it? Knowing that one day I was going to come back and make you pay for it all. And now here we are once again, only this time you’re on the outside watching ME. You won’t be able to avoid me forever, Piper. No, not at all. You see, you and I have a date. One on one at RISE. Oh yeah, I went to the boss and demanded he put that one together. And he was hardly in the position to say no. But you see, there’s another little kicker. At the next Revolution, there’s going to be a little match. A tag team match. Seeing as how you seemed to be having so much fun with the Lunatikk Crippler, perhaps he and I will join forces against you and anyone who might have the guts to even think about wanting to team up with you. In a Sin City Street Fight.
Napalm pauses for a moment to let the impact of his statement sink in. On the outside, Piper doesn’t seem all that worried.
Johnny Napalm: I wanted to go an extra step further at RISE, you know. I wanted to put you through the hell that you so happily put me through in a match of my own choosing. But unfortunately the illustrious Mr. Johnson felt he had to be fair. So he made a counter-proposal, and I couldn’t help but accept. Our date at Revolution? There’s a carrot at the end of the stick. If you and whoever you manage to strong-arm into being your partner- that is, provided you CAN find a partner- somehow manage to defy the odds and win the match, then you get to pick the stipulation for our showdown at RISE. But on the other hand, when Crippler and I win, and we WILL win, I will get you in a match more vicious, more brutal, than anything you could ever imagine.
Piper stands on the outside of the ring, her arms wide open as if taunting Napalm to come and get her. She motions for a microphone of her own.
Piper Fury: Seriously, Johnny- is that REALLY the best you can do? All this time you’ve been throwing up these little videos trying to get inside my head, and when the time finally comes, you show up with THAT little twig? Trying to channel your inner Mick Foley in the hopes that it’ll scare me? Pal, you are not.. even.. CLOSE. That’s not a weapon. Now THIS..
Piper raises Precious up.
Piper Fury: THIS is a weapon. One that I didn’t have to pull out of a closet somewhere just to try and look intimidating. Now while we could sit here for hours comparing the size of our wood, there are some more important things to take care of. This match at RISE.. it was your idea? You’re going with that? Especially when I laid down the challenge weeks ago? Geez, if I didn’t know better, I’d swear that little love tap I laid on your melon did a lot more brain damage than I anticipated. As for this little match you’ve gone and apparently set up?
Right at that moment, the opening riff of "Dragon Mistress" roars from the speakers. A song that hasn’t been played in this building in many years.. but the wrestling fans in Vegas definitely remember. They erupt as the roar of an engine echoes throughout the Epicenter and all eyes go to the entrance ramp, where a large, muscular man decked out in blue jeans, black leather boots and matching jacket, sunglasses and a red bandanna stands, his arms crossed. A slight smile crosses his lips and he makes his way down to the ring..
Other Guy: You have got to be fucking JOKING. After all these years?
Eryk Masters: You know who that guy is? I sure as hell don’t.
Other Guy: By reputation, my good man. A lot of wrestling fans here in Vegas talk a lot about the old guard- and we’re getting a look at one of them up close and personal. Kevin Stone has come back to the building- and judging by the sounds of things, these people haven’t forgotten. From what I’ve heard, he was one of the biggest names in this building before SHOOT came around.
Eryk Masters: They’re giving the guy a hero’s welcome, for crying out loud… on a SHOOT Project broadcast!
Stone stops at the ringside area and motions for a microphone. He stands beside Piper and stares right into her eyes for a couple of moments before giving her a huge hug.
Johnny Napalm: Oh, well now isn’t this special.
Stone raises the microphone to his lips, sending the crowd into a frenzy once again, with chants of "STONEWALL… STONEWALL…" coming from the stands.
Kevin Stone: So you’re the guy that Piper busted upside the noggin, huh? Nice wrap job on the bat, by the way. My twelve-year-old niece can do a better job in her sleep. Anyways, I heard you out here laying down a challenge. Something about a tag team match and daring Piper here to find herself a partner. You’re looking at him. The guy who taught Piper pretty much everything she knows about wrestling. Now I admit, it’s been a while since I’ve been in the ring, but you know something? When you’ve been doing this as long as I have, it’s like riding a bike. You never forget. And I can tell you with one hundred percent certainty- I may be getting a little long in the tooth these days, but I’m still in good enough shape to get in there and kick your ass back to wherever you came from.
The crowd cheers and Stone looks at Piper.
Kevin Stone: Whadda ya say, kiddo? We gonna show these guys how we used to do it back in the days?
Piper Fury: Hell… YEAH. It’s ON.
Piper and Stone start to head back up the aisle when she suddenly stops and turns around, a smirk on her face.
Piper Fury: Oh, yeah. I almost forgot. Not sure if you noticed, but your little surprise was spoiled earlier. The second little Sakura walked into the building, we kinda figured out that you were going to show your mug and chances are you were going to try something. Nice to see that we were right. So we figured we’d give you a little something to chew on from now until we mix it up next time…a little motivation to make sure you don’t go thinking about trying anything underhanded.
The JumboTron comes to life and splashed over the screen is an image of Sakura Lee, bound, gagged and squirming inside the open trunk of a car. The hatch is slammed shut and Mason Pierce is staring into the camera. He turns and slams the trunk three times, a signal for the unseen driver to take off into the Vegas night.
The scene opens in the smoky confines of a small basement boiler room. It’s dark down here, and the only light to be found comes from the grill of an old furnace burning diligently in one corner of the room.
Two brothers in blood occupy this room, looking like nightmares spit up from the deepest depths of Hell. Entragian paces from one end of the room to the other like a caged lion, his wet white hair hanging about his face. He appears feverish with anger, almost like a man infected with the rabies virus.
Kenji Yamada stands to one side of the room, totally still and unmoving. Compared to Isaac’s own deranged demeanor, Kenji appears almost like a corpse, emotionless eyes staring forward at the albino, his face as cold as frigid gravestone.
Isaac finally stops pacing, and he steps up to stand before The Sociopath Pioneer.
Entragian: Do you remember how it all began, Kenji? The birth of SCAR. We built this together, erected this group from the sweat off our own backs and the blood of many a fallen foe. This was once an idea in its infancy, and now it’s grown into a pack of beauty-seeking wolves. I’m proud of that. I’m proud of SCAR…
Isaac’s head tilts, white hair covering half his face so that only one venomous green eye can be seen.
Entragian: Jaime Alejandro is threatening what we built. He spits on our construct. He means to hurt me, Kenji. He means to dig his grubby little hands into my past and drag it out like a bloated corpse for all the world to see. He wants me to suffer. He wants me experience the kind of pain that digs through my head like a railroad spike. The pain of forgotten days and buried memories…>
Isaac’s eyes fall to the floor for a moment, his gaze dark and glimmering.
Entragian: I can’t have him until RISE. But tonight….you have him. You know pain, Kenji. When it comes to pain, you’re a visionary. I want him to experience pain tonight. I want him to suffer for his curiosity. I want to see him bleed, and I want to hear him cry. I want you to beat Jaime Alejandro like he’s a fucking DOG.
Entragian takes a deep breath in through his nostrils, his own poison green eyes floating up to meet Kenji’s empty blue eyes.
Entragian: Will you do this for me, sweet brother?
Kenji’s eyes are distant and clouded, his mind racing in a far-away place. He leans forward, a feverish orange shading his face from the furnace, reflecting the mirage of a fire in his eyes. He tilts his head downward, the fire subsiding in his eyes.
Kenji: You felt the need to ask me this?
Entragian: I did. I know as brothers we always stand united and mow down our enemies together, but this is a special case. This is different. This man crossed a line, Kenji. He crossed my line. There’s no going back. There’s no forgiveness in the cards for him. That’s why I ask this of you. He has me backed into a corner, and only my brothers can help me out of it.
Isaac grits his teeth together, just the thought of Alejandro filling him with disgust.
Entragian: I ask this of you…because I want special treatment for him. I want his torture to be….exquisite, and apart from myself, there is no one I would trust with this honor aside from you. It would be a personal favor to me…
Kenji: You are my brother in this world of ours. You have always stood beside me. But the reason Alejandro is given such special treatment tonight is not because of your request.
Kenji turns his palms upward, staring at the various cuts and malformations on his hands. The glow of the furnace seems to accentuate the lines and various shades of reddish destroyed tissue.
Kenji: The reason is my own, brother. Do not take it to heart, any other time I would honor you by spilling his blood. But this time… the reason is my own. Jamie is complacent with his normal life. Complacent doing nothing but preaching to the masses, never once actually doing what he says. He was once allowed a free pass by Obsidian, he could be immobile in a wheelchair pushing himself along at the speed of his mouth blowing… but he was given a free pass. A chance to try again, to reshape himself either in our image or amass a proper army to try to defeat us.
He did neither.
Isaac digests Kenji’s words for a moment, then he offers a simple not of the head.
Entragian: That’s good enough for me, brother. The reason for his evisceration is not important to me, it’s the act itself that really matters. His suffering…will satisfy the both of us. Rest assured, I’ll enjoy the show.
Kenji nods his head in reply, and then he walks out of frame. A large grin appears on Isaac’s face. He’s so caught up in his own self-satisfaction that he doesn’t even notice the figure standing in the gloom, watching him.
She’s clad from head to toe in black latex, wearing that same mask with purple button eyes and the zipper across the mouth. She watches a moment longer, and then she slips back into the smoke of the boiler room and vanishes from view without making a sound.
We cut to the ring, and Chance Ryan is standing in the middle of it it, awaiting his opponent this evening.
Samantha Coil: Ladies and Gentlemen, the next match is scheduled for one fall! Currently in the ring, he is a former two time SHOOT Project Tag Team Champion, Chaaaaaaance Ryaaaaaaaan!
Ryan pulls on the ropes, getting himself loosened up for the coming fight. He stops short and stares towards the entrance ramp, as familiar music comes on.
I WANT IT ALL
I WANT IT ALL
I WANT IT ALL
AND I WANT IT…NOW
Before the song goes any further, it is interrupted by "Back In The Saddle" by Aerosmith, which sounds throughout the arena as the fans rise to their feet. Out from the back emerges SHOOT Project World Tag Team Champion CHARLES BRANDON MAGNUS. He appears to be all about his business as he glares at Chance Ryan, already in the ring.
Samantha Coil: And his opponent…from somewhere AMAZING…he is one half of the SHOOT Project WORLD…TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS…he is CHARLES…BRANDON…MAAAAAAAAAAAGNUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUSS!!
Magnus is wearing his SHOOT Project World Tag Team Championship belt around his waist as he saunters down to the ring. Before he enters the ring he unbuckles the title and lays it down on the ground for a ring attendant to take care of. He wears the usual black BAB biker vest and his black trunks, kneepads, and boots with black wrist tape to match. He rolls into the ring as "Back In The Saddle" continues.
Eryk Masters: One half of the current SHOOT Project Tag Team Champions, about to go one on one with a former two time Tag champion. This should be one hell of a match.
Other Guy: The Bad Ass Brotherhood have held the Tag titles longer than anyone ever here in SHOOT, and Magnus is looking ready as he’ll ever be for tonight.
The music shuts off, and Magnus stares straight ahead at Ryan, and meets his gaze. The bell rings, and the match is underway. Or is it?
Eryk Masters: The bell rings, and now Chance Ryan bails from the ring!
Other Guy: Don’t worry, I’m sure this is just a ploy by Ryan to frustrate Magnus. Take him off his game.
The crowd rains boos down at Ryan, and smirks. A fan leans in, yelling insults at Chance, who jaws back at the fan.
Eryk Masters: Whatever it is, Ryan doesn’t seem too keen on getting back in the ring.
Dennis Heflin leans over the top rope, warning Ryan to get back into the ring. Ryan waves him off, taking a leisurely stroll around the ring.
Ryan doesn’t pay any attention, turning his back on Heflin and raising his arms to the crowd, to another chourus of boos.
Another fan leans in, yelling at Ryan, who flexes his bicep at him.
Eryk Masters: What is this? Ryan needs to get back into the ring!
Ryan rolls back into the ring at this point, breaking the count. Magnus tries to rush him, but Heflin holds him back. Ryan shoos Magnus away, further infuriating the Tag Team Champion.
Other Guy: If the point is to anger a member of the Bad Ass Brotherhood, he’s doing a very good job.
Heflin makes sure that the two combatants are seperated before motioning them towards each other, telling them to start the match. Magnus starts forward, ready to lock up, and Ryan goes to meet him, but at the last possible second, he ducks under Magnus’s reach, and hits the mat, rolling under the bottom rope, and back to the arena floor.
Eryk Masters: Again, Ryan leaves the ring, avoiding contact.
He waves at Magnus, still in the ring, which causes the Tag Champion to try and leave the ring after him, only to be held back by Referee Dennis Heflin. Ryan wanders over to the announce booth, and takes a cup from in front of Other Guy.
Other Guy: My diet soda!!
Chance Ryan takes a big drink from the cup, and sets it back down in front of OG. He gives a very exaggerated sigh of delight after swallowing the drink, as the crowd continues to boo.
Eryk Masters: This is ridiculous! Ryan is making a mockery of the current Tag Team Champions, refusing to get in the ring to face Charles Brandon Magnus!
Magnus back up, obviously steamed, and Heflin is warning Ryan to get into the ring again. Ryan scratches his chin, mockingly thinking about whether or not he wants to get into the ring.
Heflin begins his count again, ready to count Ryan out before the match can even begin.
Other Guy: It’s coming, Eryk! Ryan’s master plan is about to unfold!
Eryk Masters: If his plan is to be a coward, it’s been a smashing success.
Ryan climbs up to the apron, but still doesn’t get into the ring.
Magnus tries to rush Ryan on the apron, causing Heflin to stop his count to hold him back. Ryan laughs, and steps back through the ropes into the ring as Magnus is backed up into the opposite corner. Ryan charges across the ring, hoping to take Magnus off guard, but Magnus ducks a clothesline attempt! Ryan turns around to face Magnus, who picks him for a side slam, but then swings him over his head, his arms under Ryan’s armpits.
Eryk Masters: Iconoclasm!! Magnus plants Ryan down to the mat!
Magnus hurries for the cover, hooking the far leg. Heflin slides into position.
The bell rings, and the fans absolutely EXPLODE!
Eryk Masters: I….I don’t believe it! This one’s over!
Samantha Coil: Here is your winner…Charles…Brandon….MAAAAAAAGNUS!!!
Other Guy: Chance Ryan’s plan didn’t work, and Magnus wins!
Eryk Masters: The crowd is estatic, Magnus sat through all that stalling, and puts Ryan down quickly!
As the match ends and the fans drown the arena in pure noise we barely hear the sound of Eryk Masters and Other Guy as they watch the monitors.
Eryk Masters: What a match! This issue between the Brotherhood and the Syndicate is heating up and may just burn down the tag team division right along with it.
Other Guy: Gods you are starting to sound like Tanya Black. Thank God her threats from last week got her a major threat from the boss. He wants no backstage staff or even worse fans getting bloodied up for no reason.
As Charles Brandon Magnus stands up and looks out to the fans, the sounds shift as Cade Sydal slides into the ring right behind Magnus and Ninjaguris Magnus with a look of sadistic satisfaction on his face. Listening to the fans boo he seems to consider stomping Magnus’ skull in.
Eryk Masters: Cade Sydal! Damn him!
Other Guy: Someone call Buck Dresden!
As Cade’s foot hangs over the unconscious Magnus, we pan to the ramp where out from the back races Tanya Black causing a wave of boos as Sam Gideon and Cassi Ryan follow, Chance meeting them on the ramp as he shakes off his pain from the previous match. Sliding into the ring Tanya shoves Cade away and screams at him not to ruin their title match. Cade just smirks gesturing for Tanya to do it instead as Tanya looks at Magnus with a contemplative face.
Eryk Masters: Oh God. Tanya has that vicious concussion kick she has used to put folks out of commission. That thing is worse than a Ninjaguri.
Other Guy: Jason Johnson didn’t tell Tanya not to touch a wrestler. Will she get her blood tonight?
Before Tanya can decide what to do Buck Dresden hauls ass from the back knocking over Gideon and Chance with his massive frame and a swinging chair that Cassi barely ducks herself. Buck slides into the ring and glares at the two wrestlers. Tanya smiles and holds up her hands in surrender trying to talk to Buck who looks ready to take someone’s head off.
Eryk Masters: Listen to the fans! Take Cade’s head off!
Other Guy: Buck has to get through Tanya Black first and she seems to want to chat it out. But would she have taken out a helpless Magnus?
Buck starts to lower the chair though he keeps a firm grip on it as Tanya begs off. Suddenly the fans let out a roof-shattering cry of hatred as Cade Sydal hits a perfect Ninjaguri knocking Buck Dresden out right on top of Charles Brandon Magnus. Tanya looks upset and snatches up the chair demanding Cade Sydal leave the ring. Cade just laughs and tells her to use the chair on the Brotherhood. The tension mounts as Tanya Black seems unwilling to put the champions out for good, when Cassi rolls in the ring holding up the tag team titles causing the fans to boo even louder than ever. Tanya Black stares at the championship belts and drops the chair seemingly mesmerized. Taking one of the belts she places a long, loving kiss on the faceplate before draping it over Buck’s head.
Eryk Masters: It’s like a spell or something. That witch just loves the idea of being tag team champion. I hope she doesn’t molest it like she did the Sin City Championship. This won’t end until those titles change hands.
Other Guy: It’s called obsession. Tanya Black will forgive Cade’s schemes if it makes her one half of the tag team champions. She just may forgive anything for gold. Maybe now someone can get help for the Bad Ass Brotherhood who have been humiliated by Cade Sydal tonight.
With that the entire Sinister Syndicate leaves the ring, Tanya still gesturing that the belt will soon be around her waist as Chance hugs Cassi who winks at the grinning Cade, Sam Gideon silently watching to make sure the tag team champions stay down.
"DIM scene" by the Gazette starts to play on the overhead speakers, heralding the arrival of The Sociopath Pioneer. The arena is bathed in darkness, and red strobe lights pulse at the head of the ramp like the beating of a human heart.
Kenji Yamada steps out from the curtains while the SHOOT Video Wall showcases a throbbing human stomach with the word "SCAR" carved into it.
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, he hails from Kyoto, Japan, he weighs in at 220lbs….representing PROJECT: SCAR, THE SOCIOPATH PIONEER, KENJI YAMADA!!
Other Guy: It gets no more lethal than Kenji Yamada, ladies and gentlemen. This is a cold-blooded individual, and violence is his calling card.
Eryk Masters: The Architect of SCAR, OG. It took a truly unhinged mind to conceive such a group of monstrosities, and we’re looking at the owner of that mind right now.
Kenji strides down the ramp without looking at anything but the ring, his eyes cold and totally devoid of human emotion. He climbs into the ring and casually cracks his neck to the side while awaiting his opponent.
Other Guy: It’s so hard to read Kenji. His features are always so…deadened. He’s like a corpse hell-belt on shredding anything that gets into his way.
Eryk Masters: You also have to consider his opponent tonight. Jaime’s been playing a few mind games with Isaac Entragian as of late, and that can’t be sitting well with Kenji.
Other Guy: Valid point. Kenji & Isaac build SCAR from the ground up, and those two heartless bastards are as thick as thieves. You’ve gotta believe that Kenji wants to punish Jaime here tonight because of the tactics he’s been using against Entragian…
"Bad Company" by Five Finger Death Punch starts to play, and Jaime Alejandro pushes his way past the curtains. Jaime is dressed in camouflage with black military style boots, and there’s the slightest smirk playing across his face. He holds an old, cracked leather belt in one hand…and a microphone in the other.
Samantha Coil: Introducing second, he hails from Mexico City, Mexico…weighing in at 265lbs….JAIME ALEJANDRO!!
Eryk Masters: And here comes the soldier of fortune. If you want tough and fearless, then look no further, because Jaime is all of those things and more.
Other Guy: What’s with the old belt he’s got in his hand there?
Jaime begins walking down to the ring, and while he does so, he speaks into the microphone.
Jaime Alejandro: Hey ALBINO! I know your big, pale ass is back there watching….so I just wanted to give you a little message.
Jaime whips the leather belt against the palm of his hand, his good eye shining with confidence.
Jaime Alejandro: Recognize this old belt, Isaac? You should. When I found that shithole farmhouse you grew up in, I picked this up as a souvenir. It’s the same belt your drunken daddy used to use to beat the shit out of you and your little brother with. If you look close, you can even see a few old bloodstains…
A dry smile appears on Jaime’s face as he examines the belt.
Jaime Alejandro: Just so you know, I’m bringing this belt to RISE. The scars on your back may have healed, but I know the scars in your mind and still just as fresh as ever. You’re gonna feel the sting of this belt again, Isaac. I’m gonna whip that pale skin until it turns red….and we’ll just have to see if your inner child comes out to play.
Jaime climbs up onto the apron now, and Kenji shakes his head in disgust at the message Jaime is directing at Isaac.
Jaime Alejandro: At RISE…I walk into the arena with this old belt. But when I walk out of the arena….I’ll be carrying the Iron Fist belt. Keep that in mind, albino.
Jaime tosses the belt and the mic into the corner, and then he steps into the ring to face off against Kenji.
Eryk Masters: Wow. This issue Jaime has with Isaac is bringing a darkness out in the man, it’s almost like Jaime is resorting to SCAR’s own nefarious tactics to bring the fight to their doorstep.
Other Guy: All I can say is Jaime has managed to get into Isaac’s head like no other person has ever been able to do, and he just keeps twisting the knife in deeper and deeper. It makes me look forward to that Iron Fist Title match at RISE more and more…
The bell rings with a loud clang, and the match is OFFICIALLY UNDERWAY!
Kenji runs in with a quick burst of speed, but Jaime stops him dead with a barrage of hard-hitting knees aimed at Kenji’s abdomen. Jaime slams those big knees into Kenji’s gut over and over again, driving him into the ropes…and then he grabs Kenji’s wrist and sends him off with an irish whip.
Kenji rebounds and Jaime catches the smaller competitor and SMASHES him into the canvas with a powerslam. Jaime keeps hold of the leg for a pinfall.
Yamada kicks out quickly, and Alejandro starts to get back up to his feet.
Eryk Masters: Well this one started off fast and brutal, Jaime using that tremendous strength to keep Kenji off balance with some knee strikes.
Other Guy: Helluva powerslam, too. That was just as fluid as can be…
Jaime reaches down to bring Kenji back up to his feet, but Yamada responds like a feral animal, snapping his hands around Jaime’s neck and forcing him to the canvas. From there Kenji mounts the former soldier and begins to slam fists down on his face, rights and lefts, twisting his fists at the last moment so that his knuckles dig in as deeply as possible.
Jaime tries to throw his forearms up to block the barrage, but Kenji immediately stops with the punches and snaps up to his feet, only to start BLASTING karate-style kicks into Jaime’s ribs and torso. Jaime struggles, trying to roll away from the harsh kicks…and he finally manages to fight up to his knees.
The Sociopath Pioneer scouts his movement though, and after measuring Jaime for a moment…Kenji UNLEASHES with a buzzsaw kick that drills the hell out of Jaime’s temple. Alejandro’s big body crashes down the canvas face first, and Kenji falls atop of him, pulling him onto his back and going for a cover.
Eryk Masters: And that’s how quickly the momentum can shift when you’re in there with an animal like Yamada. He doesn’t even need to smell blood, he’s happy to DRAW blood first…
Other Guy: That kick sounded like it would cave a normal man’s skull in…
Jaime is slow to get up, using the ropes to find his feet. Kenji backs up and waits for him, and when Jaime finally becomes vertical, Kenji races forward while looking for a clothesline…
BUT JAIME CATCHES HIM WITH AN OVERHEAD SUPLEX!!
Kenji lands HARD, cradling his lower back….but to his credit he pops right back up and comes back for more…
Jaime catches him once more though…this time with an EXPLODER SUPLEX!!
Kenji rolls across the ring, his face showing obvious pain, and this time he’s much slower scrambling back up to his feet. Jaime goes to Kenji this time, proceeding to wrap a big arm around his neck….and he follows through with a HUGE dragon suplex!
The Sociopath Pioneer shivers against the canvas, and his body becomes momentarily still. Jaime goes for the pinfall.
Kenji shoulders out at the last moment, much to Jaime’s chagrin.
Eryk Masters: Talk about an ONSLAUGHT! Jaime is SHOOT Project’s suplex machine, this man will hit you with just about every suplex known to man…and he’ll do it well.
Other Guy: I wouldn’t be surprised if Jaime actually invented a few suplexes. Kenji is The Sociopath Pioneer, but Jaime certainly seems to be The Suplex Pioneer.
Jaime pulls Kenji up to his feet, looking for another suplex, but Kenji PISTONS a throat thrust into Jaime’s adam’s apple. Alejandro stumbles backwards while gagging, and Kenji takes that moment to hit the ropes and PLOW into Jaime with a running STO. Jaime goes down hard, the back of his head slamming against the canvas.
Yamada rudely snatches up both of Jaime’s big legs, and he twists him up and forces the soldier of fortune into a cloverleaf submission hold. Jaime GASPS as pain shoots up through his legs and back, and he starts to claw against the canvas, trying desperately to make it to the ropes.
Kenji’s face is pulled down into a horrific snarl, and he practically growls as he applies even more pressure.
Eryk Masters: This is a crucial moment in the match. Kenji is one of the best submission artists in SHOOT Project, and when he wants to twist somebody up into a pretzel, you can be certain of the fact that he’ll make it as excruciating as possible.>
Other Guy: Jaime’s hurting right now, that’s for sure. He could be reaching his breaking point…
Alejandro continues to dig and scrape across the mat, and he’s finally starting to find purchase, slowly but surely dragging himself to that bottom rope. After a moment of utter desperation…his fingers finally close around the bottom rope.
Kenji has no choice but to break the hold, and when he tries to drag Jaime up to his feet Jaime manages to throw a discus elbow into the side of Kenji’s head, knocking him down to the canvas. Jaime then just leans against the ropes, testing out his legs after being locked in that cloverleaf for so long.
Jaime finally seems to find his balance, and he goes over to one of the turnbuckles, proceeding to climb his way up to the top rope.
Eryk Masters: We don’t see Jaime go up top too often. I wonder what he has in mind here?
Alejandro waits for Kenji to rise, and then he LEAPS with both hands locked together, looking for an axe handle smash….
BUT KENJI YAMADA KNOCKS HIM RIGHT OUT OF THE SKY WITH A YAKUZA KICK!
Jaime’s head whips to the side and spit flies out of his mouth, and he crashes down to the canvas like a downed aircraft. Kenji throws all of his weight down on Jaime’s chest in a pinfall attempt.
Jaime finally manages to kick out, but his eyes are still misty as though he’s barely aware of his own surroundings.
Eryk Masters: Damn near kicked the man’s head clean off his shoulders! That knocked about a quart’s worth of saliva out of Jaime’s mouth…
Other Guy: Who needs a dental plan when Kenji’s Yamada’s around?
Jaime crawls over to the ropes and starts to pull himself up, and Kenji goes to meet up….big Jaime leaps up into the air and sends a MAMMOTH dropkick into Kenji’s chest. The force of the dropkick sends Kenji ALL the way across the ring, and he lands while struggling to draw oxygen into his chest.
Eryk Masters: Holy SHIT! Awesome to see a dropkick busted out by a big man like Jaime.
Alejandro carefully gets back up to his feet, and he goes over to Kenji, proceeding to pick the man up and place him across his shoulders in a fireman’s carry. Jaime turns his body so that he’s facing the camera, and a wicked little smirk draws up the corner of his mouth.
Jaime Alejandro: FOR YOU, ALBINO!
Jaime then throws Kenji up into the air and SLAMS him down gut first against his knee with a massive gutbuster!
Other Guy: Did I just see that?? Jaime used Isaac’s own finisher….THE DISEMBOWELER!!
Eryk Masters: That is a DIRECT message to the Iron Fist Champion, OG. The head games continue…
Jaime falls atop Kenji and pulls back HARD on a leg.
At the last possible second, the referee sees that Kenji’s hand has floated up to grip the bottom rope, effectively breaking the pinfall attempt.
Other Guy: That was too close for comfort there. I gotta believe Yamada would have been done if not for that bottom rope to grab onto.
Eryk Masters: You never know with Kenji….it takes an insane amount of damage to put him down for the count.
Jaime moves in to pick Kenji back up, but Yamada surprisingly snaps Jaime up by the legs and rolls him up with a schoolboy pin attempt!
Samantha Coil: Here is your winner, representing Project: SCAR…THE SOCIOPATH PIONEER…KENJI YAMADA!!!
Other Guy: Holy crap….Kenji just stole one!
Eryk Masters: That was INCREDIBLE quickness on Kenji’s part. He pinned Jaime before Jaime even knew what was happening.
Other Guy: I feel like this one could have gone either way, but Kenji leaves Las Vegas tonight with a victory thanks to that roll-up.
Yamada rolls out of the ring under the bottom rope while snarling, and Jaime remains in the ring on both knees while staring down Kenji, kind of nodding his head as if to say "you got me that time."
The chunky opening riff of Adrenaline Mob’s "Undaunted" boom from the speakers… and the trio of Mason Pierce, Leona and Piper Fury emerge from the back. Piper’s got a wicked scowl on her face and Precious on her left shoulder. Pierce looks out at the crowd, his eyes obscured by a pair of designer sunglasses. The trio make their way down the ramp toward the ring. Leona pauses at the ringside area and commandeers a pair of microphones, handing one to Mason after the three of them have entered the ring.
Eryk Masters: There’s been a fair bit of buzz concerning this power trio ever since the last Revolution. Mason Pierce made his return to a SHOOT ring and dropped one hell of a bombshell on the Epicenter fans- that he would be the sixth man to compete for the SHOOT Championship at RISE. Neither he or Leona have been answering any phone calls when asked for comment, but we were told just before the show that they’d address the issue tonight.
Other Guy: And it looks like that time has come. There’s a lot of speculation going on right now, and it all centers around Mason’s allegiance to X and the Hierarchy. This is the guy that X-Calibur practically bought and paid for, and now all of a sudden Jason Johnson flips the Fixer with a better offer? Something doesn’t sound right. And Piper looks like she’s ready to chew nails and spit thumbtacks.
Eryk Masters: Here we go…
Leona: Ever since we’ve arrived here in SHOOT, we’ve gotten nothing but ridiculed and mocked by each and every one of you. Hell, Piper was wrestling here before half of you even knew there WAS wrestling on this end of town. And you know something? I finally get it. I finally get why. I think it’s safe to say I speak for the three of us when I say the light bulb has come on and, to be honest, we’re wondering why the hell we didn’t realize it sooner. Oh, I’m sure part of it probably has to do with the fact that Mason and I aren’t afraid to tell things the way they are, and that is something that I can guarantee you we are NOT going to apologize for, so if that’s what you’re waiting for, you’ve got a better chance hitting the Megabucks with a dollar bill in your pocket. But you see, we’re not here tonight to go off on you, the audience – even though you probably deserve it. Not this time. You see,
we’ve got some much more pressing business to deal with.
She nods and Mason takes the microphone, pausing to remove his sunglasses and place them in the inside pocket of his leather jacket.
Mason: That’s right. At the last Revolution, as some of you may recall, the SHOOT champion, X-Calibur, was standing right in the middle of this ring pretty much calling out the big boss man of the whole place, practically daring him to find someone else to fill that slot at RISE that Jonas Coleman had the misfortune of surrendering thanks to his injuries- injuries that I will, right here and now, tell you all that I had NOTHING whatsoever to do with. Believe me, I’ve been hearing the whispers and the rumors, and it’s like I told the champ- the fact that he’s still breathing should be proof enough that it wasn’t my work. You see, I finish what I start. I’ve seen the video, and to be completely honest, I’d be embarrassed to put my stamp on that shit job. Coleman’s gonna come back one of these days, no doubt about that. But it ain’t gonna be yours truly that he’s gunning for. Don’t know who did it, and quite frankly, I don’t give a damn who it was. It wasn’t me, wasn’t Piper- was it?
Mason looks at Piper, who shakes her head.
Mason: Didn’t think so. Just had to check, ya know. Anyways, it’s like Leona said, there’s some more pressing business to deal with right here and now.
Leona: As I was saying, I think it’s safe to say we found the reason you all have had a stick up your ass where the three of us are concerned since we really found our footing here. And it has to do with the SHOOT Heavyweight Champion. X-Calibur himself. He sold us one hell of a bill of goods, promised us the world if we’d sign on the dotted line and become part of the Hierarchy. And not really knowing a hell of a lot better, we took the jump. The money was good, the work seemed like something we could handle. And it was getting done. Hell, Piper took care of Azrael Goeren’s dirty work quite nicely. But you see, we got to thinking. Why exactly WAS X so damned insistent on getting us into the Hierarchy? I mean, let’s look at things for a second. When X and his goon squad were lacing into Trey Willett backstage, we were in the building. Did he come to us? Nope. I don’t think we’re the only ones that noticed that whenever X wanted something handled, he decided to either do it himself or call his brain-dead goombahs to handle it for him. And you know something? We were more than happy to let it slide. As long as he was sending the checks, we were quite content to sit on the sidelines until he called for us. And then, at Reckoning Day, Mason goes down with an injury. Where was X when Mason was having his shoulder popped back into place? When he was being put under the knife so that they could fix the damage that Maya inflicted? Out at his Lake Las Vegas retreat with his boys, celebrating his victory. No visit, no phone call. All of a sudden, it’s like when Mason lost his Rule Of Surrender Championship, we became irrelevant to him.
Mason: And then things got interesting. Real interesting. While I was out taking care of our business, I got a nice little surprise. Imagine my shock when I head to the bank one day only to find out that the last check you wrote us was made of rubber. Now THAT, Eryk, was something I sure as hell wasn’t expecting. And I’ll be honest- it pissed me right the hell off. I know I cut my hand somethin’ fierce on the mirror that happened to be the closest thing handy for me to put my fist through. So first thing I do, I get on the horn to Vegas. I want to know what the hell’s going on. Your manager, or whoever the hell picked up the phone, told me that everything would be taken care of. That’s the only thing that kept me from coming back here earlier and putting you right in the fucking ground with a nine-millimeter slug coring out your skull cavity. Well, that and the fact that I really can’t take care of business proper if I’m sitting in some jail cell waiting on murder charges. Let’s face it, pal- you may be many things, but worth a murder rap? Nah, I have better ways of dealing with you.
Mason pauses for moment, pacing the ring.
Mason: And then what happens? I get the call from Double J. The big boss man. Tells me he wants my services. He’s willing to pay whatever price it takes to make sure you don’t walk away from RISE with that belt around your waist, and as a nice little bonus, he puts me right in the thick of things. Didn’t sit too well with you, did it, X? Of course not- because your first reaction was to turn off the phones and go back to yer little bunker, hang your head because your own actions have turned every person you’ve come to call an ally against you, and you figure you’re gonna just pull the plug on the Hierarchy. Call it quits. Cut everyone loose, like dissolving the group is going to be enough to get us off your back. And in doing so, you’ve gone and proven every single word we’ve said here. You’re no leader, Eryk. You’re a coward. Bail out before the ship goes down, was that your plan all along? Well, I got news for ya. We’re not gonna let you scamper away. You want to disband the Hierarchy? Fine. Go ahead. All that means is that all of a sudden, you’re on your own. One mouse against five hungry predators. And at RISE, you’re gonna have to deal with every damn one of us. Me, Kenji, Kenshin, King…
ALL OF THE LIGHTS
Without warning, "All of the Lights" kicks in the PA system, bringing the fans to their feet. The entourage in the ring stop what they’re doing and watch as out from the back emerges DONOVAN KING. King stands there, wearing a pair of dark blue jeans, black Timberland boots, and the new LONG LIVE THE KING t-shirt. After a while, he stalks down to the ring and enters it quickly, the fans cheering loudly as he does so.
Eryk Masters: Oh man…this is going to get very interesting!
"All of the Lights" dies down and King stands there, microphone in hand, looking over at Mason and his entourage. Slowly, King points out to the audience…and the cheers begin yet again. After a while, it fades.
Donovan King: Do you hear that?
King nods to the fans.
Donovan King: LAS VEGAS! STAND…UP!
The fans respond, cheering HARD.
Donovan King: THAT…that…is our life’s blood. It’s what we live for…it’s what we die for. Without them pumpin’ in…an’ out…in…an’ out…of this Epicenter, we’d be declared dead. But here they are…night after night. They’re here for me…they’re here…for you. You an’ me? We ain’t met yet. I’m Donovan King. You…you’re Mason Pierce. Hired gun, mercenary, now…former Hierarchy, am I correct?
Before Mason can respond, King stops him.
Donovan King: No disrespect, because I know you…but when a man meets another man, he introduces himself.
Mason Pierce: Well, well. Donovan King. I was wondering when you were gonna show up. Let me guess.. you’re coming out to tell me how you’re gonna kick my ass at RISE? Or you got something else on your mind? Considering you’re just slightly outnumbered right now, I highly doubt you’re looking for a fight.
At the mention of a fight, Piper grips Precious a little tighter, but Mason quickly shakes his head.
Mason Pierce: Hold off, Piper. Let’s hear the man out first.
King eyes Mason for a moment.
Donovan King: Y’know…the numbers game…it works on a lotta folks, but for me? If I wanted to lay hands on a guy…I’d just lay hands on him, regardless of the ass whippin’ finna come my way because of it. But you’re a smart guy, Mason. Might not have the best scruples, but as long as your bank account’s full, you’re the perfect weapon. You stay aimed at the right guy, an’ the rights things’ll happen.
King takes a step towards Mason.
Donovan King: See, I don’t agree with you. I don’t agree with this mercenary Dog the Bounty Hunter bullshit. I think it smacks uh dishonorable talk. I sat there after I made Trey Willett tap out last week an’ I thought about what part you play in all this. Originally, I was gonna hunt you down after RISE since you sided with that sorry, no good, low down mother fucker X. Then, I hear tell about your new gig for Jason Johnson an’ now? Now I sat in the back an’ I listened to you talk about X-Calibur with a disgust that made all that irritation an’ aggression inside me…go away.
Donovan King: You never liked that son of a bitch, did you?
Leona seems to take some exception to one of those remarks.
Leona: Whoa, whoa… hold on a second.. you come out here and compare Mason to that no-good bounty hunter hack? Are you TRYING to get your ass kicked? Seriously? Do you have any idea who you’re talking to?
Mason puts his hand on Leona’s shoulder.
Mason Pierce: Easy, Lee. Easy. Let me handle this. We’ll forgive him that little slip for now. Especially since on at least one point, he’s bang on the mark. The part about having no love for the champ. You’re right. I’ve never really cared much for the bugger. Us being a part of the Hierarchy? It never had anything to do with loyalty or friendship. It was all about the money. He was willing to keep us on the payroll, and we were happy as hell to answer his call. Honor? That was never a part of the equation. Never has been, never will be. You want to know what honor will get you these days? That and five bucks might get you a latte down the street at the Starbucks. Honor got me blackballed in my OWN FUCKING COUNTRY. I’ve got no use for it, and it sure as hell has no use for me. Go ahead, call me a mercenary if you want. I’m not ashamed to admit I do what I do as long as the money’s good. I’ve got my own motivations, just like you’ve got yours. I don’t take kindly to being thrown out like the trash when I no longer fit into someone’s agenda- as was the case with our current champion. That’s why when the offer came in from Double J, I was more than happy to take it. I get a chance to settle a couple of scores and make some bank in the process. And walking out with the championship- well, that might just be the icing on the cake.
Donovan King: Okay, one?
King motions to Leona.
Donovan King: This is professional wrestling. You got no idea how many people call me a dumb gangsta thug, so we talk in broad stereotypes. My bad…Leona? Leona, yeah. And two?
King looks over to Mason.
Donovan King: I’m not here to fight you, Han Solo. I don’t give a damn why you want in on this match, how you’re in it, or whatever else. All I care about is you want a piece of X-Calibur’s dumb ass, an’ what you an’ me finna do to one another at RISE…it ain’t nothin’ but business. As long as you on this side of the fence, you want back up, you got it. Kenji Yamada, X-Calibur…they some foul mother fuckers…an’ with Jonas Coleman among the missin’, I for one believe one of those two know what happened. Shit like that can’t keep happenin’. Not now, not anymore.
King extends his hand.
Donovan King: We’ll give each other bruises some other time, pimp. Tonight’s the night we take aim at what needs to die…not at each other.
Mason stares at the outstretched hand for a moment and then into the eyes of King…. before shaking it.
Mason Pierce: Sounds like we have us an understanding, then.
This little revelation seems to be getting a reaction from the capacity crowd in attendance.
Eryk Masters: Wait a second… are there actually people in the crowd cheering for Mason? Could he actually be winning the favor of the fans? Quick, someone turn on CNN, because I think they’re about to show footage of Hell freezing over.
"All of the Lights" kicks back in as King nods to Mason and grins at Leona before he exits the ring.
Other Guy: Something like this has been a long time coming- I know a lot of insiders have been wondering just what the hell has been happening with the Hierarchy, and now we’re finally starting to see the big picture- and for the champ, it’s definitely not a pretty one.
The camera catches King slapping a hand as he walks up the ramp.
Eryk Masters: Things were put in motion at the last Revolution when Mason announced he was a part of the big main event at RISE thanks to the favor of Jason Johnson, and we all wondered if this was just a big ploy by the Hierarchy to walk out with the belt. This is the first time we’re really seeing some serious rebellion in the ranks.
Mason Pierce: One more thing.
"All of the Lights" cuts off as King stands at the entrance stage. Mason, however, is staring at the camera.
Mason Pierce: Now X, I know you’re sitting back there, getting all worked up for your match tonight with Kenshin, and I really hope, for your own sake, that you come out here and show that there’s a fire lit under that inflated ego of yours- that you actually DO give a damn about staying at the top of the mountain. You don’t, Kenshin’s gonna leave you as nothing more than a splatter stain on the canvas- and he could very well do it again at RISE. Bottom line, champ- it’s gut check time. Nut up or shut up. You want to stay king of the hill? Time to quit talking a good game and bring it. We’re watching ya, champ. We’re… ALL… watching you.
The fans LOVE it, and they POP in response. Meanwhile, the camera cuts to King, who is grinning from ear to ear, clapping his hands in respect. "Undaunted" starts up again as Mason drops his microphone and replaces his sunglasses. The trio exit the ring and start making their way up the ramp….
Eryk Masters: And now it’s time… for the main event.
Other Guy: I have been looking forward to this one all week.
Eryk Masters: You and me both. Both are seasoned veterans of the SHOOT Project and have had their equal share of gold.
Other Guy: In fact, both men, at one point in time, had claimed to be Kings of the Iron Fist division.
Eryk Masters: It is the former SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion taking on the current reigning SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion. It is the SHIELD vs. The REDEEMER.
Other Guy: Don’t go anywhere, folks! This one is kicking off… right now!
"The Fire" by John Legend and The Roots hits the speakers and before long Jun Kenshin comes waltzing out from the back. Rotating his shoulder and cracking his neck, the look of intensity in his eyes is matched only by the willingness to inflict pain from his knuckles. Adorned in classic white with emerald trim, a white Muay Thai style robe with the words "THE SHIELD" written in gold on the back. Stopping just before the ring, he looks out at the audience, nodding with appreciation.
Samantha Coil: The following match is scheduled for one fall, making his way to the ring f-
Eryk Masters: LOOK OUT!!!
Before he even realizes what is happening, none other than Gavrilovich Mikael Yurinov CHARGES down the ramp-way and BLASTS Jun Kenshin from behind with the full force of his 350lbs frame!
Other Guy: What the hell?! Yuri looked like a Russian FREIGHT TRAIN the way he ran down that ramp! I don’t even think I’ve ever seen him run before!
Eryk Masters: This is not good for Jun Kenshin.
Kenshin flies forward awkwardly like a rag doll from the impact of the Russian Assassin. Refusing to give Kenshin a moment to recover, Yuri reaches down with his 5X size hand and palms Kenshin’s face, lifting him back to his feet with one arm! TEARING his robe off of his body, Yuri then shoves Kenshin hard into the edge of the ring apron, Yuri actually motions for the Perfector to try and defend himself.
Eryk Masters: Don’t even play into this, Jun! He WANTS you to make a m-
Other Guy: Too late.
Kenshin reaches out with a foot extended for the Heaven’s Blade… but Yuri catches the base of his foot and SWATS it away like a fly! With Kenshin off balance, Yuri grabs the back of his head and guides him toward the ring post… and slams him head first into the steel!
Eryk Masters: Good freakin’ GOD his head hit that post hard!
Other Guy: That was disgusting. Where’s X-Calibur? You KNOW he’s the one who orchestrated this.
Peeling Kenshin off of the post, Yuri grabs onto the back of Kenshin’s waist line and spins him around to pick up a bit of momentum, then THROWS him right back into the ring post in a flipping motion, causing him to land dangerously on the back of his neck right on top of the steel steps! Causing the audience to wince in utter agony for their SHIELD, Yuri removes what looks to be his old potato sack of shame out from inside his leather jacket, and holds it up for the crowd to see.
Eryk Masters: No… he’s not…
Other Guy: Yes… he is.
Pie-facing Kenshin as he tries to get up – toying with him like a lion would its prey – Yuri kicks over the top layer of the steel steps with an inextinguishable rage about him. Reaching down, he places the potato sack on Kenshin’s head, drawing equal parts ire and applause from the Kenshin fans and smart marks alike. Then, setting Kenshin up for a powerbomb, Yuri lifts him up and immediately SNAPS him down spine first across the base of the steel steps… and holds on!
Eryk Masters: DAMMIT!
Other Guy: That was BRUTAL… OH MY GOD HE HELD ON?!
Keeping Kenshin in position for another power-bomb, Yuri lifts the Perfector up into the air and SMASHES him back down for a second power-bomb on the steel steps… and holds on yet again!
Eryk Masters: Somebody for the love of God STOP this guy.
Other Guy: I’ve never heard someone make the steel steps echo through the Epicenter like that before.
For the third time, Yuri heaves Kenshin’s lifeless, potato-sack wearing frame up into the air… and ANNIHILATES him with a THIRD powerbomb across the steel steps! Finally letting go, Yuri snarls like an untamed beast, reaches down and scrapes Kenshin’s carcass off of the steps and rolls him into the ring!
As soon as he does this… a familiar guitar riff is heard through out the Epicenter.
Eryk Masters: That dirty, rotten, no good son of a BITCH!!
Other Guy: Easy there, padre. He might hear you!
Eryk Masters: I don’t give a multi-colored shit! There was NO call for that! I’m SICK of seeing garbage like this go down!!
As Lorenzo checks on Kenshin, who hasn’t moved since being unceremoniously rolled into the ring, X-Calibur makes his way down to the ring while "Change(in the house of flies)" DUBSTEP Remix Feat. CLAW by the Deftones explodes onto the house speakers. With the original SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Championship draped over his shoulder, he wastes little time sliding underneath the bottom rope and into the ring.
Other Guy: For those of you who didn’t see it earlier this week, X-Calibur has given his personalized World Heavyweight Title to Yuri as collateral for a future payment.
Eryk Masters: I hardly think anyone gives a damn about that right now, OG. Kenshin is as good as dead in there. All thanks to that big Russian bastard. And X. That… damn… X.
With the music cutting off, Kenshin lies motionless on the mat as X-Calibur motions over to the time keeper’s table for a microphone.
X-Calibur: Look at you, Jun. So… weak. The SHIELD of the SHOOT Project, ladies and gentlemen. Lets all give him a ’round of applause!
He starts clapping with the microphone, generating DEAFENING boos from the capacity crowd.
X-Calibur: They also, once upon a time, called you the Undeniable. And when you came back, they started calling you the Perfector. Well you know what, Jun? I thought of an even BETTER one. From this day forward… you will have another moniker to add to your seemingly endless collection of nicknames.
Behold… Jun Kenshin: The Broken.
Pausing, he kneels next to Kenshin. Removing the potato sack, X slaps Kenshin’s face a couple of times.
X-Calibur: Get up, Jun. I’m not through with you yet. Not by a LONG shot.
Kenshin slowly rolls over, holding the back of his neck and clutching his ribs. X simply slaps him in the back of the head. The disrespect oozing from his flesh.
X-Calibur: I SAID… GET… UP.
Lorenzo comes between X and Kenshin, and actually pushes X back a few feet. Laughing at this, X holds his free hand up while he continues into the mic.
X-Calibur: Sure, T-Lo. No problem. I wouldn’t want to give myself the unfair advantage!
Eryk Masters: Ugh. I think I’m gonna PUKE.
As Lorenzo checks on Kenshin, he shakes his head and waves his arms as if the match is not happening.
X-Calibur: Oh… oh yeah? That’s it? Just like that? Sure, call it off. I’ve already beaten this sack of fucking shit before, so I don’t need to waste the space on my belt with a second notch from Jun Kenshin. Besides, The BROKEN is too much of a PUSSY to get up anyway…
Hearing this, Kenshin grabs the bottom rope and helps himself sit up. Seething with rage, grimacing in pain, Kenshin tries to pull himself together as some of the fans begin chanting his name to try and rally him to get up.
LET’S GO KEN-SHIN!*clap, clap, clap-clap-clap*
LET’S GO KEN-SHIN!*clap, clap, clap-clap-clap*
LET’S GO KEN-SHIN!*clap, clap, clap-clap-clap*
LET’S GO KEN-SHIN!*clap, clap, clap-clap-clap*
Chanting with them, X shouts into the microphone.
X-Calibur: LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN! LET’S GO, KENSHIN!
Their chanting subsides to boos as X-Calibur’s own chanting kills the effect they were going for.
Pulling himself the rest of the way to his feet, Kenshin quakes with rage as Lorenzo asks him if he wants to go through with the match anyway.
Jun Kenshin: Damn right I do.
The crowd POPS.
Lorenzo asks him again, just to be sure.
Jun Kenshin: RING THAT DAMN BELL!
They pop even HARDER.
X-Calibur: As the Broken wishes.
X-Calibur drops the microphone and kicks it out of the ring. Shaking his head, Lorenzo shakes his head and calls for the bell… and like a shark smelling blood, X charges towards Kenshin and SMASHES him against the ropes with a double axe-handle! Sending him to the mat in an awkward heap, X lays the boots to Kenshin’s body until Lorenzo pulls him off.
Eryk Masters: I can’t even BELIEVE Lorenzo has agreed to let Kenshin go through with this match.
Other Guy: Agreed. It was a pretty bad judgment call if you ask me.
Once again putting his hands up, as if he was "doing the right thing", X taunts the capacity crowd to elicit an absolute tidal wave of boos. As Kenshin slowly picks himself back up and out of the corner, he limps his way forward, clutching his ribs, and motions for X to get on with it.
Obliging him, X boots Kenshin in the gut. Setting him up for a three-quarter necklock bulldog, X motions for the X-Terminator.
But out of NOWHERE, Kenshin slips out of it, drops down to the mat and rolls up X!
Eryk Masters: OH MY GOD!
Other Guy: NO WAY!
THREE- NO! X SHOULDERD OUT JUST BEFORE THREE!
Eryk Masters: DAMN… that was so close. Son of a…my heart skipped a beat!
Other Guy: This whole AUDIENCE thought it was over. I never saw a sold out crowd jump to their feet so quickly in unison before… only to be completely deflated of their excitement.
Realizing he almost got himself beat, X gets up off of the mat with eyes full of fury. Looking out at the audience before looking at Kenshin, who is struggling to get up, X drops a knee into Kenshin’s ribs as he drives him to the mat. Maneuvering his shin just below Kenshin’s windpipe, X criss-crosses his foot with his other leg, completing the gogoplata submission hold he has perfected in the SHOOT Project. Ripping down across the back of Kenshin’s head, X screams at him to tap.
Eryk Masters: Bite of the Basilisk… this one’s over.
Other Guy: Let’s be real here. This one was over before it even BEGAN, Eryk.
Struggling momentarily to try and find a way out, it isn’t long before Jun Kenshin’s body and mind give out on him and he simply taps out. Lorenzo immediately calls for the bell.
Samantha Coil: The winner of this match by submission… the SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion… X-Calibur!
Eryk Masters: What a farce this match was.
Other Guy: Well, to Kenshin’s credit, he damn near BEAT X with a rogue roll-up.
As he lets go of the deadly submission hold, X dips out of the ring momentarily, picking up the microphone he previously kicked out of the ring. Climbing back in, X kneels down next to Kenshin while looking towards the back.
X-Calibur: You know… this whole situation? It’s getting really… REALLY fucking silly. Donovan… is all mad at Trey simply cause he tapped out to ME and thereby let everyone down at Reckoning Day. Trey… is mad at Donovan because he knows Donovan’s right. Kenji… is distracted with this little Project: SCAR gangbang on poor defenseless Maya.
Pausing, he dodges a cup of soda. Ignoring this as best he can, he continues.
X-Calibur: Jonas… is bleeding out of his asshole in a gutter somewhere. Mason… has stepped in Jonas’ place and decided to take an opportunity he doesn’t deserve, and in the process has turned into such a selfish little cockgobbler.
And now Kenshin? Kenshin is about to be put into a coma.
With Kenshin out of it after suffering through Yuri’s brutal attack and X’s Bite of the Basilisk, X face washes Kenshin with his boot, causing him to fall back to the mat after having gotten to his hands and knees.
X-Calibur: It’s like… it’s like a bad fucking SOAP OPERA around here, folks. All we need now is for Laura Seton to serve me with paternity papers and Lunatikk Crippler to fall down an elevator shaft. Ever since Reckoning Day… shit has gone COMPLETELY south around here. And… there’s a reason why it has, folks.
It’s because of one man.
And his name? His name is Jason Johnson.
The crowd boos at this declaration, obviously not believing a word he is saying.
X-Calibur: Jason Johnson hates me. He, quite literally, hates everything about me. He hates everything I STAND for. Through this… this unadulterated HATE, he has become lost. He has become a bungling MESS of a CEO who is completely incapable of making rational decisions. And because of this, we are burdened with the wretched "Operation: GET THE TITLE OFF OF X BECAUSE NO ONE IN SHOOT IS GOOD ENOUGH TO BEAT THIS GUY ON THEIR OWN."
There is a roar of approval at this.
X-Calibur: Right. And somehow I’M the one trying to sink SHOOT Project into this quagmire of bullshit?! Right, Donnie?! Yeah… he would certainly have all of you believe that.
But the truth is… I am the LAST one to blame around here for the problems arising in SHOOT Project.
As it turns out, this place doesn’t NEED my guidance to help raze it to ashes. No. Even with the Hierarchy trimming its ranks as of late and not as, shall we say, omnipresent as it was a year ago, the SHOOT Project seems to be doing quite the remarkable job at killing itself all on its very own. And the more you bitchy cunts squabble with each other over who’s the bigger quitter, the more you prove my fucking point.
At RISE? I’m going to give that final… little… push… and watch every one of you back there fall into oblivion.
He pantomimes pushing something over the edge.
X-Calibur: I’m going to put the final torch to the highly flammable walls of this place and burn the ugliness right out of this motherfucker.
Oh, I know what you’re all saying back there. Soooooo many people have made their hollow promises to do precisely that. From the Sinister Syndicate to that long forgotten faction of EMO faggots The Forsaken. Everyone, at some point in time, has made idle threats to take the SHOOT Project down to its barest foundations.
But, as you can see, the difference between myself and all of them? NONE of them are in my position, and NONE of them ever will be.
I am the REDEEMER of the SHOOT Project.
And I am the SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion.
Let me say that last part again in case any of you out there couldn’t hear that.
I AM… the SHOOT Project… WORLD… HEAVYWEIGHT… CHAMPION.
And when the end credits start rolling at RISE? Trust me when I say…
He pauses for a moment, then climbs the ropes in the corner. In a hushed whisper with his eyes closed and his head pointed upwards…
X-Calibur: …I still will be.
He lets that marinate for a few moments, and before long, "Change" begins playing again, signaling his exit.
But as the fans grow tired of X’s antics and words, and MORE projectiles hit the ring, X suddenly opens his eyes and grins. Suddenly, X hops down from the middle turnbuckle he was perched on and begins wagging a finger as he shouts into the mic.
X-Calibur: WHOA, WHOA, WHOA. Did I SAY I was finished?!
YURI… we have a job to finish.
He looks down at Kenshin, who has started getting to his feet again.
X-Calibur: I told everyone what would happen if Jason wielded his shield at me.
Yuri makes his way out to the ring again. X’s smile grows crooked. He mounts Kenshin, who is still out of it after those triple power-bombs. Yuri meanwhile, stalks his way towards Samantha Coil and the chair she sits on. Screaming as he gets closer, Yuri doesn’t even wait for her to get up before shoving her back against the guard rail onto her fine bottom. SNAPPING the steel chair shut with a vicious growl, Yuri climbs back into the ring. Handing X the steel chair, X holds it up with one arm like a sword on top of Jun Kenshin.
X-Calibur: Let who will boast their courage in the field, I find but little safety from my shield, nature’s, not honor’s law we must obey… this made me cast my useless shield away.
Dropping the microphone, he grabs the chair with both hands and JAMS the point of it down into Jun Kenshin’s forehead and throat. REPEATEDLY.
Six or seven precision executed shots later, he dismounts from Jun Kenshin and starts BASHING his face in with the seat of the chair. Kenshin’s forehead opens up as Yuri joins in by lifting him up into a seated position, holding his arms out at his sides with a knee in his back, exposing his face entirely. Winding up, X slams the chair directly into his skull in such an unsettling manner that the entire audience gasps with fright. Yuri lets go and Kenshin’s eyes roll to the back of his head as he collapses lifelessly to the side in a twisted manner. A river of red flows from the large gash in his head down to the mat, and X looks down with an emotionless stare.
Throwing the chair down like a used object he wanted no part of, X holds his arms up in the air in triumph. Yuri picks up the SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Title, turns Kenshin over and simply presses his bloodied face against the gold plate. Removing it, he drapes the blood stained championship over the shoulder of X.
Like a badge of honor.