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Revolution 206

 

Voice: Don’t you think I want that!?

Other Voice: I think you want it too much and that’s the problem! You’re not thinking straight.

The feed fades up to reveal a camera locked on Lennox Ferguson, SHOOT Project Chief of Staff, and Dan Stein, SHOOT Project COO, in the midst of a heated confrontation inside Stein’s office.

Lennox Ferguson: I don’t believe this. If it were your son-

Dan Stein: It’s been ALL of our sons; or don’t you remember the attack on Molly that started this whole thing? You’re tired. You’re angry. I GET that, but that means you’re also making irrational decisions.

Lennox Ferguson: Like what?

Dan Stein: Like what? Like your attack on Ayumi. And then letting your pride prevent you from having her draw NC-17 out from the shadows. You’re too close to the situation! Besides, why is it you think Josh assigned me to this role?

Lennox Ferguson: You wouldn’t like my answer.

Dan scoffs, leaning on his cane and shakes his head, making his way around to the other side of his desk, before sitting down.

Lennox Ferguson: Meanwhile, you seem to forget that it was me who booked NC-17 tonight for the Premier Championship. He’s too prideful to NOT show up; and when he does-

Dan Stein: You’ll what, Lennox? Go out there with a baseball bat and beat the shit out of him? Launch an attack like Miranda did? This… group; no, let’s call them what they are: these terrorists have been a step ahead of us — ahead of YOU — since this all started and if we are going to take control of this situation we need to strike now and with everything we have.

Lennox Ferguson: And you think I sound tired and angry.

Stein slams his fist on the table.

Dan Stein: You need to stop with the petty bullshit, Lennox. Or else.

Lennox raises his eyebrows.

Lennox Ferguson: Or else?

Dan stands up again from his desk, slowly, but forcefully. He walks over to Lennox — the Lights locking eyes with the Ox.

Dan Stein: We are going to get Daihm back, Lennox. You have my word on that; but in order to do that-

Lennox Fergsuon: In order to do that you’re going to need me out of the picture.

Dan Stein: Don’t make this sound like some sort of mob hit; come on. You’re still employed; at least, unless you do something stupid. That was the or else. But it’s become clear that you came back from your voluntary leave of absence too soon and so now that leave is mandatory.

Lennox nods, clicking his tongue in frustration, as he shakes his head and turns to walk away. Dan reaches out to put a hand on his shoulder but Lennox flings it away violently.

Lennox Fergsuon: Don’t touch me, Stein. Don’t you dare.

Dan pulls his hand back, genuinely shocked and hurt by Lennox’s response. He watches as Lennox makes his way to the office door and begins to open it to step out into the hallway. The Ox turns to look at the Lights and points firmly at the COO. 

 

He looks like he is about to say something to Stein but seems to think better of it before shaking his head in disappointment one last time and closing the door behind him.

Backstage

I DON'T BELONG HERE

 

Flaco Cortez–The Kid–is pacing.  We really get an opportunity to see how this young man approaches things in these moments.  His hair is a deep black, cut into a fashionable mullet.  He is fresh faced, possessing wide features and big eyes that seem constantly saucered-open, as if he cannot believe any part of where his life has gone.  He’s also tall as fuck, and the camera actually has to angle upwards to catch him breathing into his clasped hands. 

The Kid: The honest truth is, I’m pretty sure like…I don’t belong here.

He throws up his hands like he’s on defense, gulping nervously, scurrying to get in front of an imagined verbal lashing. 

The Kid: I don’t mean in wrestling!  I’m pretty decent at that, at least that what Paria and Bennett say–King Oso says that me and everyone my age are…well, insults.  It’s a bad word that I don’t personally like repeating. 

He shakes his head, placing his hands on his hips, looking to the floor. 

The Kid: But a match for a belt?  This soon?  I know, I know, I know.  I’ve won some things!  So I shouldn’t like, be…I dunno, down on myself? 

His eyes level with the camera, his brows raised in worry. 

The Kid: But yo, legit, I’m scared.  I’m a big enough guy to admit that.  I’m so used to being in there with older partners.  They can fix everything I do wrong on the fly and bail me out when I’m stupid and don’t do right.  Now I don’t have any of that.  King Oso said it’s important for me to do this one on my own, and Bennett agreed, so that’s how I knew it was a good idea. 

He walks off frame, clearly a bundle of nerves, then walks back in, hand on his chest. 

The Kid: But I tell you.  Hand to God.  I really hope NC-17 shows me little mercy. 

Finally, Flaco shakes his head and begins jumping a little in places, moving his arms, exhaling deeply.  He closes his eyes, raises his head, and begins repeating something that seems like a very common set of words.  A mantra. 

The Kid: Ugh!  Okay, okay.  Out of your own head.  Remember to visualize.  Empty your mind.  You’re strong enough, fast enough, good enough.

He stops moving.  Lowers his head, softly counting to himself.  His breathing slows down.  Flaco may actually be calm. 

Then he raises his head and opens his eyes and ruins the illusion.  He’s just as worried as before. 

The Kid: Aw man, I’m gonna get killed in there…

With that rueful claim, he walks out, making less words as much as worried noises.  We cut away…

FLACO CORTEZ Vs. NC-17 (c)

PREMIER CHAMPIONSHIP

Singles Match

POST MATCH

The crowd is on their feet at the conclusion of NC-17 and Flaco Cortez as both competitors have retreated to their corners, but there is no question that the reigning Premier Champion isn’t looking to relish his victory with the entire arena ready to riot.

Eryk Masters: NC-17 is a tough competitor for sure, but I don’t like the odds of 1 against 8,000.

Jason Johnson: 8,001, Eryk. I’m done letting this twerp get away with his bullshit.

Eryk Masters: Hey wa-

Before one half of the world’s best ringside announce team can close the distance, the crowd turns and looks to see Miranda DC speeding down the rampway! And IMMEDIATELY behind her is Chick Grillbreast! AND JACK JOHNSON!

Eryk Masters: The cavalry’s here! The cavalry’s here! LET’S GO! The ENTIRE arena has turned its ire NC-17 as Miranda, Chick, and Jack slide themselves directly into the ring! They are looking to get their hands on the man who has caused so much chaos in this company over the last six months and NO ONE is going to stop-

SCREEEEEE!

The audio feed cuts abruptly into static and the arena lights begin to strobe wildly. Then, suddenly, two ropes drop from the catwalk to the mat with a pair of masked figures then quickly sliding down to even the score!

The lights and audio return to normal just in time for the fans to fully grasp the scene. A battered and bruised, but aggressive NC-17 is flanked on either side by a figure in a white suit and white-and-black demon mask and another figure in a red suit with a red-and-black demon mask. The two masked figures step forward to protect their ally while the trio of Miranda, Jack, and Chick are suddenly reassessing the situation.

Jason Johnson: I’m back and not a moment too soon! I’m not getting in the middle of that shitstorm, Eryk.

Eryk Masters: Glad to have you back, JJ.

Jason Johnson: Don’t call me that!


YOU’VE GOT THE TOUCH!

YOU’VE GOT THE POOOOWWWWER! 

 

“The Touch” by Stan Bush blows out the Epicenter speakers and gets the fans who weren’t already out of their chairs onto their feet as Dan Stein emerges from the back, pushing himself forward as quickly as he can with the assistance of his cane in one hand and a microphone gripped tightly in the other.

Dan Stein: HEY! HEY! Cut the shit right now! We’re not doing this tonight!

The fans turn salty, beginning to boo as Dan catches his breath and points down towards the ring in clear frustration.

Dan Stein: I’m sick and TIRED of these damned GAMES and so help me I am going to put an end to this crap NOW.

A seething Stein grips the microphone even tighter.

 

Dan Stein: Miranda, Chick, and Jack; I know you want your chance to claim your retribution and you will have it, but not tonight…

The fans begin to boo.

Dan Stein: Instead you EACH will have your shot at Warrior’s Code! AND not only that, but this group here likes to say that their actions are due to the sins of those of us in SHOOT who are Fathers…. but until all the members of this sick, twisted TERRORIST group reveal themselves, then THEIR sins will be cast entirely upon NC-17!

The fans ERUPT as a shocked NC-17 looks around, confused and somewhat terrified.

Dan Stein: That means, NC-17, unless you can convince your partners to reveal who they really are before the pay-per-view, you will be facing Miranda DC, Chick Grillbreast, AND El Paria in a single evening! You want to spread the wealth? Then speak the truth and tell us who is doing this bullshit!

NC-17 begins to yell profanity at Dan Stein, held back by the two masked figures while Miranda, Chick, and Jack all have the biggest smiles you’ve ever seen emerge on their faces.

Dan Stein: Nah, shut it, Teen! You had your chance to talk last Revolution and now it’s MY TURN. I don’t care if you exit up the ramp, through the crowd, or into the damned rafters, but you ALL need to get out of SHOOT Project’s ring because we still have a show to put on and bills to pay. HOWEVER!

Dan takes one last look at NC-17 and the masked figures at his side.

Dan Stein: Let me make one thing extremely FUCKING clear. Daihm Ferguson…

The crowd ROARS at the mention of THE DRAGON.

Dan Stein: If Daihm Ferguson is not returned to his father. If he is hurt in any way…. If he is… if you have done ANYTHING to harm him. Then, I don’t care WHO you are — for what you did to me and my career, for what you did to Jamie Johnson, and for Daihm’s sake… it will be my personal mission to see each of you personally and professionally EXCOMMUNICATED from this industry.

 

The fans roar in excitement as Dan lowers his microphone and turns to leave. As he does, Miranda, Jack, and Chick glare back at NC-17 and the other masked figures before briefly talking to each other and then stepping backward, eventually rolling out of the ring, choosing to wait until Warrior’s Code for their chance at revenge.

Eryk Masters: Thank GOD for Dan Stein. We may finally get some closure on this whole affair.

Jason Johnson: I… I hope so, Eryk. For Jamie’s sake and God only knows about Daihm. I just want this over with.

 


Eryk Masters: Amen.

ATOMIC PUNKS VS. THE PATRIOT ACT

Tag Team Match

POST MATCH

A KNIFE TO THE HEART OF AMERICA

Johnny Patriot and Boyd Walton help each other up as their match ends. The fans cheer the showing against the Atomic Punks as The Patriot Act stands in appreciation of the fans approval, but are quickly confused when the fans start booing.

 

Eryk Masters: Here comes The Punchline from out of the crowd!

 

The Punch Line, Roy Vezina, and Ryan Samuels emerge from the crowd, hitting the ring. Roy has a hockey stick that is painted like the Canadian flag. As Ryan Samuels grabs Johnny Patriot and throws him out of the ring. Johnny lands hard, hitting his head against the barricade, knocking him flat. Vezina catches Boyd on the back of the knee with the hockey stick, knocking him to his knees hard. Boyd clutches the knee Vezina struck, but Vezina continues to hit him. 

 

Jason Johnson: Man, the Vezina crew is NOT taking their little war with The Patriot Act lightly.

 

The Punch Line and Ryan Samuels join in the beating, stomping mudholes on Boyd between hockey stick shots. Rick Hull eventually pulls an American flag from his trunks and proceeds to wrap it around the throat of Boyd, choking him. Harv Norris and Roy Vezina continue attacking the knee of Boyd, but seeing the American flag being used as a weapon actually seems to cause some pause from Ryan Samuels.

 

Eryk Masters: Ryan Samuels doesn’t seem super thrilled about the defilement of the American flag.

 

Jason Johnson: And Boyd Walton doesn’t seem thrilled about having his knee shattered by a bunch of Canadians.

 

Harv turns away from crushing Boyd’s knee and begins to ask what is wrong with Ryan Samuels. Rick and Roy continue to choke Boyd and crush his knee with no help in sight. Once Boyd’s knee seems fully destroyed, Roy drops the hockey stick and calls for a microphone.

 

Roy Vezina: Listen boys, when you mess with the bull, you get the horns, eh? Johnny Pattycakes, CICADA, you boys wanna step into our barn, well screw you. This is my team, my house. Give your balls a tug, cause you dusters are gonna face off against my guys at Warrior’s Whatever, eh? Oh yes you Canada! 

 

At the mention of CICADA, Ryan looks immediately unsettled. To save face, he boots Boyd Walton in the ribs. All four men grab each other by the arms and raise each other’s hands in a showing of victory as Patriot stirs on the outside and Boyd screams while clutching his knee. The fans boo the Canadians.

 

Eryk Masters: Sooo…did the Punch Line just effectively create a handicap match at Warrior’s Code? 

 

Jason Johnson: It looks to be that way. It also might be even more of a handicap situation, as you may have noticed that CICADA is nowhere to be seen right now.

ARTHUR PLEASANT VS. NEMESIS

Singles Match

ELSEWHERE

COMBATE A MUERTE

The camera abruptly opens to the floor. The lower image quality makes it clear that this is a smartphone camera, not the usual TV camera used by SHOOT. As the image jumps around and swings about, all we can figure out is we are in a lavish room. As the camera finally finishes adjusting, we get a much better image of the scene. We are in a well decorated, clearly wealthy bedroom with a glass door in the background that opens up to the outside, light cascading in. Maximo Fisico walks into frame, wearing a pink mesh t-shirt, nothing underneath, and lime green denim shorts that are SHORT. He sits down on what can only be described as a golden throne, gaudy and far too expensive, with his Sexiest In SHOOT Title slung over his shoulder. Despite the lavishness and ridiculous nature of his outfit, he seems fairly serious.

 

Maximo Fisico: I won’t take much of your time. I’ve been on a bit of a vacation since…well…the Coltons know. Currently, I am in Colombia visiting my family, so you won’t be finding me Benny and Denny.

 

Maximo wipes his nose, scoffing.

 

Maximo Fisico: Despite the…grotesco fawning that my partner displayed, I do not have the same respeto that my partner has for you two. It is…nothing personal, I don’t have that respeto  for anyone. 

 

Maximo puts extra emphasis on the Spanish equivalent of respect.

 

Maximo Fisico: I saw you beat up my sweet partner. I am not angry. He was foolish for showing up to the taping. He was foolish thinking he could talk to you. I mean, I assaulted your brother. It doesn’t matter what El Niño Lucha knew about or didn’t know about. You were getting your pound of flesh either way.

 

Maximo sighs.

 

Maximo Fisico: With what I did, you’re going to want to hurt me very badly, I expect. So, I’m going to give you that chance. Let us not have a regular match at Warrior’s Code, tagging back and forth, ending some kind of simple pinfall or submission. How…anticlimático. Let us engage in combate a muerte, a deathmatch. Barbed wire ropes, tornado tag rules. Let’s get a little…asqueroso…a little nasty.

 

A smirk appears on Maximo’s face.

 

Maximo Fisico: I think that’s what little Nate would have wanted.

 

With that, Maximo stands up, walks over to the camera, and turns off the camera.

Ryan Samuels Vs. Joshua Breedlove

Singles Match

Backstage

EIRE'S RETRIBUTION

The scene opens with a close-up of Archer Quincannon, The Fist of Eire, standing in a dimly lit room. The remnants of the attack are still visible; his expression is one of pure, unbridled fury. He steps forward, the intensity in his eyes burning brighter than the lights around him.

 

Archer Quincannon: Last week, under the guise of the night and the cowardice of shadows, Elijah Starborne and his so-called Celestial Order decided to make a statement. A statement drenched in what they thought would break me, cover me in shame and humiliation. But let me tell you, Elijah, all you did was fuel the fire that’s been raging inside me since the day I stepped into this ring.

 

Archer’s voice grows louder, his Irish accent thickening with each word.

 

You think dropping that red, blood-like mockery on me, leaving a grotesque smiley face in the center of the ring was going to do what? Humble me? Scare me? Oh, it did neither. It pissed me off. It showed me and every single person watching exactly what you are—a coward hiding behind theatrics and mind games.

 

He paces slightly, his fists clenched.

 

You and your Celestial Order are nothing but a bunch of spineless charlatans, using smoke and mirrors to distract from the fact that you don’t have the guts to face me like a man. Well, hear this loud and clear, Elijah; your little stunt didn’t weaken me. It didn’t make me fear you. It made me despise you.

 

Stopping, Archer stares directly into the camera, his message pointed and clear.

 

So, here’s what’s going to happen. I’m not waiting for another sneak attack, not sitting back and letting you think you’ve got the upper hand. No, I’m coming for you, Elijah. I’m coming for you and every single member of your precious Celestial Order. You want to play games? Fine. But remember, I don’t play by the rules. I make them.

 

His tone becomes menacing, a promise of retribution.

 

This isn’t just a fight anymore, Elijah. It’s war. A war you started with that pathetic display, but one I’ll be damn sure to finish. You’ve awakened the beast, and trust me, you won’t like what comes next. I’ll wipe that smile off the mat and off your face if it’s the last thing I do.

 

Archer’s gaze is unyielding, his resolve as clear as the day.

 

So, prepare yourself, Starborne. Gather your Order and look over your shoulder, because I’m coming for you. And when I find you, the entire world will see who truly stands with the cosmos and who’s just playing in the dirt.

 

He steps back, his message delivered, his anger palpable.

 

The Fist of Eire doesn’t back down, doesn’t cower. I fight. And Elijah, I’m bringing the fight to your doorstep. Be ready.

 

The scene fades to black, the echo of Archer’s words hanging heavy in the air, a promise of vengeance and a showdown that no one will want to miss.

 

LEXI GOLD VS. LAURA SETON (C)

WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP

Singles Match

POST MATCCH

SETTING THE TABLE

As Laura Seton rolls up to her feet and Lexi Gold exits the ring, the lights in the arena dim until golden pyro showers down from the uppermost portion of the Epicenter arena. This is the preamble… the prologue to the arrival of the one, the only…

 

MAKE WAY FOR THE KING

 

The crowd comes to their feet, with Laura Seton moving to and leaning on the top rope facing the ramp. The crowd’s in a frenzy, the music’s playing, and the number one contender makes himself present. 

 

Jason Johnson: Well there he is, ladies and gentlemen! The guy that’s going to take a crack at winning his third world title in the SHOOT Project. The inimitable JOSHUA BREEDLOVE.

 

Eryk Masters: Breedlove and Laura have been pretty cordial to each other despite the fact that he’s about to try to take something she’s taken so, so long to obtain. What do you think that’s about? 

 

Jason Johnson: I think there’s a healthy level of respect there, legit. I think he knows what kind of competitor Laura is, he knows what she brings to the table, and most importantly, he knows that he has never beaten her.

 

Eryk Masters: Ever.

 

Jason Johnson: Right, ever. There are so few people in this industry who can say they’ve got a perfect record against Breedlove. I think it’s really just her… and Azraith. Legends. 

 

Having showered and cleaned up from his match against Ryan Samuels, Breedlove walks half way down the ramp with a microphone in his hand, clearly with something on his mind.

 

Joshua Breedlove: First up, shoutout to Ryan Samuels for the workout earlier. Didn’t expect it to be easy, and it wasn’t. That guy’s a future champion, especially if he can pull his head out of his ass.

 

The crowd laughs.

 

Breedlove: But that’s not why I’m out here. I’m out here to congratulate Laura Seton on her first, and hopefully only, World Heavyweight Championship defense, because at Warrior’s Code? That belt? 

 

He points.

 

Breedlove: That belt is coming home to the Empire, home to me.

 

The crowd boos, which causes Breedlove to smile. He raises his hands as if to say “I know, I know”.

 

Breedlove: I get it. Y’all love Laura Seton and I don’t blame you. She’s everything that a SHOOT Project wrestler should be or should try to be, except for one quality… one thing she’s missing. 

 

She’s not Joshua Breedlove.

 

He laughs, part of the crowd cheers, the other part boos.

 

Breedlove: I have assembled the greatest collection of talent that any group in the SHOOT Project has ever seen, and I’ve done so because I’m the greatest collection of talent the SHOOT Project has ever seen, and frankly? 

 

Real recognizes real.

 

So at Warrior’s Code? You and me are gonna do this. We’re going to step into that ring together one more time, and I’m going to correct the record when it comes to Breedlove Vs. Seton. I’m getting that one win. The one DUB that I need, and it’s going to be the most important win in my career to this point.

 

It’s the win where I ruin your perfect record against me.

 

It’s the win where I tie the record for number of World Championships held.

 

And I think you know by now, Laura, that it’s not personal. I really like what you represent and how you carry yourself in this business. In another world, I’d be recruiting you to be amongst my great collection of talent, but this is not that world. 

 

This is my world.

 

And that’s my title.

 

See you at Warrior’s Code.

 

Black.