Table of Contents
The Most Amazing, Wonderful, Greatest Performer on Earth
“Make Way for the King” by OHANA BAM EXPLODES over the speakers and the capacity Epicenter crowd comes alive right before transitioning to a SERIOUS amount of boos when they realize what’s happening. Crimson and gold shiny confetti falls from the sky, blurring everything out, confetti everywhere, and then…
“MAKE WAY FOR THE KING”
Crimson and gold pyro shoots out from various places on the ramp, announcing and confirming the entrance of the former SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion, Joshua Breedlove!
Scott Kamura: We’re kicking this show off with the former champ! Gotta say, he’s had a rough run of luck the last few times we’ve been out here, Dutch, and you know he’s looking to turn things around.
Dutch Harris: It’s true. Breedlove’s lost the World title, then he lost in that tag match the last time out. He’s just a loss to Buck Dresden away from going on an actual losing streak.
Scott Kamura: You know that’s not something he’s used to. He’s experienced very little BUT success since coming to SHOOT Project.
Breedlove’s music keeps playing despite the absence of the former World Champion, but fear not, viewers… this is a show of force. Flanked by every single member of the Holy Breedlove Empire, the former champion… appears. Danni Johnson, Ultimo Muerte, Muratagi Hanzo, Cromwell Yarbury, El Paria, Clemson Dean (Admin), Armstrong (Luxury Driver), Enzo Maggiani (Sports Car Driver), Kelvin Breedlove (Gopher), Alexandra Vergara (Social Media Intern), Yves Hazelton (IT), Hiroyuki Nobu (Personal Chef), Hodding Schrotenboer (Head Counsel), Nigel (Butler), Rufus Delmonico (Branding Specialist), Stacia Ng (Costume Designer), Raoul Manchego (Sanctorium Facilities Coordinator), Liam Beauregard (Personal Tailor), Arthur Osborne (Personal Historian), and the man himself… JOSHUA BREEDLOVE (former World Heavyweight Champion, Longest Reigning Sin City Champion, Two Time Villain of the Year, Feud of the Year Winner).
Scott Kamura: I feel bad for whoever’s job it was to transcribe all of those titles, people, and positions…
Dutch Harris: You’ve got that right, so we’ll just… I think we’ll just kick back to the former champ, who has a microphone!
Joshua Breedlove: Guys, gals, and my non-binary pals… welcome to Ruination 27!
He doesn’t wait for the cheap pop, which draws the cheap boos.
Joshua Breedlove: I just wanted to show you and the rest of the world what was going on here, you know? These men and women… they are the team that makes up the DREAM that is the Joshua Breedlove Experience. Please… welcome the HOLY BREEDLOVE EMPIRE.
He continues to not wait for a reaction.
Joshua Breedlove: Tonight, we watch the end of Lindsay Troy’s stalkery quest to get to me, as she ultimately comes up short and FAILS against Ultimo Muerte. Ultimo Muerte, while being the quietest member of the Empire… is blessed with a mystical power of destruction. It gets channeled by some witch or wizard or something and she couldn’t be here with us today and he is exceptionally devastating. I can’t wait to watch him turn Lindsay Troy into a pile of disgusting goo. A direct contrast to the kind of goo that I dropped on her that caused her obsession with me, and for that… I apologize. I’m sorry that I turned Lindsay Troy into a drooling school girl hoping to pull the hair of her crush and whatever else drooling school girls do. I’m sorry that I burned her so bad that she opened her own wrestling company just to feel some tinge of success. I’m a fan of real women, so I traded up. I found myself an Empress.
The crowd boos as Breedlove motions to Danni Johnson, decked out in a fresh crimson and gold outfit, as she walks up behind Breedlove and places a hand softly on his shoulder.
Joshua Breedlove: But that’s not all, right folks? Tomorrow night, I get the opportunity to keep my rematch with our silent, absent World champion a singles affair, when I take Buck Dresden out and ruin his Redemption plans. So, let me throw this out to Buck Dresden.
The crowd pops at the mention of the SHOOT Project Hall of Famer.
Joshua Breedlove: Oh, calm down. Buck, you’re probably one of the smartest people I will ever step into the ring against. You and I know each other really well, despite having only squared off that one time, in which I was victorious. Very victorious. The most victorious, but I digress… you’ve made a very, very dangerous claim, haven’t you, Buckley? You’ve declared that you NEED to beat me. You MUST beat me. You HAVE to beat me. It’s not about… whatever it was you said… it’s about… doing your duty or being a soldier or whatever it is that you say to get these people all hot and bothered…
Joshua Breedlove: …and you know they’re hot and bothered. So, hey, I know you’re up next… I know you want a crack at the REAL World Heavyweight Champion… and you’re going to get it. I just hope you’re every bit the changed man you say you are, otherwise you’re going to find yourself in the same situation that so, so many others have found themselves in, and that’s another notch in my victory belt.
Joshua Breedlove: I actually have several victory belts because I’ve won so much… anyway. Hit my music, we’re done here.
And like that, “Make Way for the King” hits as the Empire’s procession begins to file out, with Clemson Dean shouting “SINGLE FILE! SINGLE FILE!” multiple times, trying to herd these cats.
Scott Kamura: Strong words from the former champion, Dutch.
Dutch Harris: That’s the truth. Breedlove has so many targets on its back it’s hard to keep track of which one belongs to who. He has problems with… Iggy Martin… Lindsay Troy… and Buck Dresden. That’s… that’s a lot.
Scott Kamura: It’s true, but we can’t get hung up on that, as we’re kicking the wrestling portion of this evening off with a SIN CITY CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH as SHOOT Project newcomer Danny V5 takes on Jamie Johnson!
Danny V5 Vs. Jamie Johnson
Enter the Dragon
After the bell rings, El Paria hits the scene in what’s becoming somewhat of a trend, as he runs down and slides into the ring after Jamie Johnson!
El Paria tackles Johnson to the mat and begins just dropping punch after punch into the Sin City Champion, moving to Jamie’s midsection when Jamie goes to cover his face! Paria gets to his feet and Jamie tries to get to one knee, but Paria DRILLS him with just a soccer punt style kick to the head!
Scott Kamura: Oh come on now! This is too much.
Dutch Harris: He said he was gonna, Scott! El Paria is going to get Jamie Johnson in a match by hook or by crook.
A confident looking El Paria stands over a crumpled Jamie Johnson, looking on and ready to strike once again.
When there’s lightning, you know it always brings me down
Dio’s “Rainbow in the Dark” hits the speakers and El Paria stops to turn around. He sees a blue blur erupt from backstage and begins running down the ramp.
Scott Kamura: Yeah! Let’s go! Daihm the Dragon has joined the battle!
Dutch Harris: They may not be Super Smash Brothers, but a unique bond has been growing between the two second-generation stars as of late so it’s no surprise Daihm has stepped up to support Jamie here.
Running full speed ahead, Daihm is about to slide into the ring when BAM!
After sneaking out from underneath the mat, a masked figure rises up – baseball bat in hand – and takes a full-motion swing that connects directly with the stomach of the younger Ferguson, dropping him to the concrete floor gasping for air.
Wearing an Oni-style demon face mask covering their lower jaw, the figure’s purple hair falls over a dark velvet pea coat with green accents. They raise the bat up again, over their head, and then SLAM it into the ribs of The Dragon, causing a scream of pain as Daihm rolls over onto his stomach, holding his side.
The figure kicks him again in the ribs for good measure while the crowd roars in shock and surprise. The masked assailant merely raises their head up slightly, leaning on the handle of the upright baseball bat admiring their handiwork.
Scott Kamura: Who in the WORLD!?
Dutch Harris: Looks like El Paria anticipated someone may finally try and intercede tonight so he brought in some insurance that came very much in handy.
Scott Kamura: Not as much as you might think, Dutch. Look!
In the time that El Paria’s attention was turned towards the masked figure, Jamie Johnson got a chance to recover, winds up and superkicks Paria in the back of the head, sending him crashing to the mat!
The crowd roars as a bloodied Jamie Johnson begins jawing at the fallen El Paria. Quickly, the masked figure makes their way over to El Paria and pulls him out of the ring on their shoulder.
Jamie Johnson: Oh no you don’t!
Jamie wipes blood from his mouth before taking a running stride and jumping over the top rope into an explosive plancha aimed at El Paria and whoever is under the mask. Trying to react, the masked figure pushes El Paria out of the way and goes to life their bat, which catches Jaime awkwardly in the chest.
As he hits the ground, bringing the masked figure with him, his arm reaches out and the force YANKS the mask off the figure, sending it skittering across the cement floor.
The crowd is on their feet cheering on Jamie but also trying to get a look at who is under the mask. After several seconds, the now maskless figure pulls themselves up and stands shakily to their feet, held up by El Paria.
Scott Kamura: IT’S PUNKY! NO WAY! One half of the Pop Punks is out here not only helping El Paria, but quite literally beat her friend Daihm Ferguson down to the ground.
Dutch Harris: Guessing their probably former friends after this, Scott. And I doubt she’s part of the Pop Punks now either – she’s come out here and made a statement by injecting herself into the Jamie Johnson and El Paria feud.
The crowd roars in a mix of surprise and anger as “Punching” Judy Punchinello and El Paria advance on Jamie Johnson and begin to stomp away at the Sin City Champion who is trying to recover from his aerial assault but before they can get too far Daihm is back up and looking on in shock as he sees Judy attacking Jamie Johnson. But after putting two and two together his face contorts in anger as he bum rushes both Judy and El Paira with a DOUBLE CLOTHESLINE that sends the two down to the floor.
Dutch Harris: We’ve got an all-out brawl going on here and FINALLY here comes security to break this thing up!
A troupe of referees and security guards fly down the ramp and begin pulling each of the wrestlers apart – and as they do another figure emerges at the top of the rampway: Lennox Ferguson.
Ox: Alright folks! That’s enough!
While Jamie and El Paria are pulled apart by three security guards each, Daihm Ferguson takes one look up the ramp towards his father and SNAPS, blowing past Judy and heading up the ramp at full steam.
But no sooner than he makes it halfway up does a trio of security guards intercept causing an angry scream from Daihm. Ox looks over at his son for a brief second before shaking his head and looking back over to El Paria and Jamie Johnson.
Ox: I’m sick and tired of these reckless attacks and I’m sick and tired of the damned PAPERWORK you four have been causing me.
Ox shakes his head.
Ox: Paria? You want Jaime in a match? You’ve got your wish at Redemption!
The crowd erupts but Ox holds up his hand signaling he has more.
Ox: But it won’t be for the Sin City Championship. Oh no. Actions like yours don’t get THAT kind of reward. You’ll be going up against each other in a Tag Team Match and these two right here…
Ox points at The Dragon and Judy Punchinello.
Ox: They’ll be your partners.
The crowd yells in excitement as El Paria and Jamie nod confidently at each other, yelling something unintelligible.
Dutch Harris: WOW! What a matchup – not only will we finally get to see the grudge match between Jamie Johnson and El Paria come to a head but you can feel the heat radiating out from Judy Punchinello and Daihm Ferguson right now – this is going to be a barn burner.
Ox looks over at Judy and nods.
Ox: Welcome back, Judy. I trust your training went well?
Judy smirks and Daihm tries to wrestle free of the security guards once again.
Daihm: YOU! YOU DID THIS!?
Ox shakes his head.
Ox: Make sure one of our top talents kept in shape while they needed to be put on leave because your actions – or lack thereof? I guess so. Now I’m just making sure you four don’t interrupt any more matches. We’re already behind schedule and this was the first match of the night! Save it for Redemption and get the hell to your locker rooms before I start leveling fines.
Lennox Ferguson exits and unceremoniously as he arrived leaving a feisty El Paria and Jamie Johnson jawing at each other as security pull them away separately, a smirking Judy Punchinello grabbing her discarded mask and slipping it back on before exiting through the crowd, and a furious-looking Daihm Ferguson being held back from possibly causing patricide.
Nate Robideau Vs. Payaso de la Muerte
Quid Pro Quo
The back door to the Epicenter opens as Ayumi Seppuku enters – pulling the hood from her sweatshirt off of her head as she tries to sidestep members of the crew in the back making her way into the building.
Despite making it through the initial barrage, she can’t seem to shake Mary Kelly, who is poised like a viper ready to strike – a microphone shoved into Ayumi’s face.
The Ronin Wraith continues to walk forward but the intrepid reporter follows.
Mary Kelly: Ayumi. Hi! I understand that you’ve been reinstated after being turned away before your match with the DeMitris against the Family. Anything you’d like to say to your fans now that things seem to be cleared up?
Ayumi smiles forcefully but continues to walk with Mary in pursuit.
Mary Kelly: Okay, so, Ayumi – we understand that the reason you were barred from competing against The Family was due to some sort of assault at a middle school. SHOOT Project Chief of Staff Lennox Ferguson says everything’s been sorted out but would you care to elaborate at all on the situation?
Ayumi: I wouldn’t. No.
Ayumi continues to walk forward while the backstage reporter begins to get frustrated about not getting more content out of one half of the tag team champions, so she pivots slightly.
Mary Kelly: Okay then, let me ask something else. Ayumi… you faced Ultimo Muerte, your partner Lindsay Troy’s competition tonight, last July in a battle royale. Also, we all know Muerte was a bit of a thorne in the side of NC-17, who you befriended before he abruptly ended his career here in SHOOT. Do you think Lindsay Troy has what it takes to beat Muerte tonight and earn a shot at beating Josh Breedlove?
At this line of questioning, Ayumi stops and turns to face Mary.
Ayumi: Well done, Mary. You finally struck a nerve. Fine. Do I think Lindsay can beat Muerte? Unquestionably. Would Lindsay win against Breedlove? They’d both have a fighting chance and I’d put my money on Lindsay because she has more of a chip on her shoulder. Now, can I get going?
Mary shakes her head.
Mary Kelly: Look. I… have to ask. What’s the latest with Ryan A. Reeves Middle School? I understand you’re banned from being within a mile of school grounds?
Ayumi lowers her head and sighs.
Ayumi Seppuku: Honestly just the best for everyone involved. There was no wrongdoing, obviously, just a … difference of opinion about values.
Ayumi goes to leave but Mary persists.
Mary Kelly: But… doesn’t being banned from a middle school make it more difficult for you to be someone who SHOOT Project looks to as a brand ambassador, for lack of a better word?
Ayumi scoffs, now stepping forward and encroaching on Mary Kelly’s space.
Ayumi Seppuku: Mary… what’s this all really about? Who is putting you up to this? You know me as well as anyone. I didn’t take you for a gotcha journalist. If I didn’t know better I’d think you’re moonlighting for TMZ.
Mary lowers her head in a moment of shame, but then persists.
Mary Kelly: People just want to know… what’s next for Ayumi Seppuku?
Ayumi thinks for a second, a calmness falling over her.
Ayumi Seppuku: If there is one thing that I’ve learned about being a role model, a mentor, is that there will ALWAYS be someone out there wanting to tear you down. Unfortunately we are not at a place yet, as a country, where people can be judged for their actions rather than what makes them different. If you want to know what’s next? There’s no question in my mind that I haven’t done enough to be that voice – that role model.
Ayumi lowers her head and then looks up to meet Mary Kelly’s gaze.
Ayumi Seppuku: Look… I want to just get to my dressing room and check in with my tag partner. I know you probably still have a lot of questions, so how about this? Name your time and place and I’ll do a sit-down interview with you. No holds barred. No question off the table. A true SHOOT exclusive.
Mary lowers her microphone and is a bit taken aback but Ayumi just extends her hand.
Ayumi Seppuku: Deal?
Mary reaches out and returns to the gesture.
Mary Kelly: It’s a deal.
Ayumi nods and then quickly turns away to exit the scene as Mary and her camera operator are left alone in an otherwise empty hallway in the depths of the Epicenter.
Spinebuster Island Vs. The Sin City Scoundrels
Got Your Back
It’s nearly main event time as we zip backstage to find Lindsay Troy leaning quietly against a wall near the gorilla position. She looks poised and determined as she affixes the last bit of her arm tape, then stretches out her limbs one final time. She’s been uncharacteristically reserved as of late, choosing to focus her attention on completing the Empire Gauntlet and silently studying tag teams rather than wasting precious energy on the wastrels on Spitter. While she would normally take pleasure in spit-roasting the various shitlords and attention whores on there, the Queen has a job to do, and there’s no time for distractions.
Troy is so focused on her last bit of mental prep that she doesn’t hear footsteps approaching behind her. It’s not until a voice carries through the air and the body it belongs to stops in front of her that her concentration is even broken.
“Damn, girl, you look like somebody done pissed in yer cereal.”
She turns to see Buck Dresden, Big Iron himself. He looks her up and down and nods his head in approval.
Buck Dresden: I like seein’ people ready fer a fight, ‘specially when they got somethin’ on the line. Feelin’ good?
Lindsay huffs out a chuckle as a smirk finds its way to her lips.
Lindsay Troy: I feel like kicking someone’s head into orbit. Suppose Muerte will serve the purpose.
She crosses her arms in front of her, considering the All-American Outlaw for a moment.
Lindsay Troy: You’re booked tomorrow, Buck, so that begs the question: what are you doing here?
Buck Dresden: I was in the neighborhood. I’m a fan of the sport. You knockin’ out another flunky for the Empire is definitely worth a look. Besides…
He stops for a brief moment.
Buck Dresden: …I imagine you’ll be doin’ the same thing come Revolution when I face Josh Breedlove.
She nods; touché, salesman.
Lindsay Troy: Just make sure you leave him breathing for Redemption, would you?
Buck waves it off with a chuckle.
Buck Dresden: He’s too arrogant to die. If there’s a Heaven, God wouldn’t take him and the Devil would think he’d be gunnin’ for his job. Just…hey. You caught me in Master of the Mat and since it looks like we’re on the same tracks right now, if it comes down to you’n me…
He tries to think of what he can say next.
Buck Dresden: …I dunno what I’m tryna say. You’re a good person. You run a whole other damn company. You’re real damn successful an’ kept a good head on yer shoulders an’ that ain’t easy.
The smirk drops, just a touch. Lindsay looks down at the ground, then over Buck’s shoulder to stare at nothing, to try and keep her composure, because the last week has been a nightmare, the last month or so have been filled with headaches, and the last year or two have been heartbreaking. And it’s been so very hard not to just say, fuck it all and walk away.
But these are stories for another time.
Instead, Lindsay’s eyes meet Buck’s and she gives him an easy smile. Not a confident smirk. Just a smile.
Lindsay Troy: I appreciate that, Buck. Means a lot coming from you.
He smiles and offers her his hand.
Buck Dresden: Good luck with Muerte. Until we’re face to face in the ring again, I got your back. Then after that, too. I need more good people in my life.
She takes his hand and nods.
Lindsay Troy: Same.
Lindsay Troy Vs. Ultimo Muerte
After the bell and his loss is announced, Ultimo Muerte has an uncharacteristic temper tantrum right in the middle of the ring, drawing the attention of Lindsay Troy, who immediately moves over to him and RIPS the mask off of his head!
Scott Kamura: No. way.
Dutch Harris: It’s BREEDLOVE. Breedlove wrestled this match to try and thwart Lindsay Troy from getting him at Redemption! Are you serious?! What a BRILLIANT move that unfortunately BACKFIRED.
Ultimo Breedlove immediately retreats from the ring, sliding out underneath the rope and staring daggers towards Troy, his face beet red, and his hair disheveled. He’s yelling unintelligible things at Troy, who holds up Muerte’s mask, points at it, and laughs.
Scott Kamura: You’re right, that WOULD have been a great move if it had worked. Unfortunately, Breedlove got his ass kicked and he suffered ANOTHER loss.
Dutch Harris: He’s officially on a losing streak heading into Revolution! We’re out of time, folks! Tune in tomorrow as Buck Dresden challenges Breedlove for a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship!