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Ruination 56

Who knows?



While it couldn’t be said where he is, it’s clear Pigpen Matsumoto is either in an area that allows smoking, one where it isn’t allowed but no one can find him, or he’s threatened whoever told him he couldn’t smoke with the loss of an eye.  Likely the latter. 

He’s chiefing a Marlboro, having long ago run out of his favored Seven Stars.  He is inserting various weapons into the various places he hides them–the forks go in his booths before lacing, a spike underneath the top strap of one of his massive knee braces, his knuckledusters nestled against his junk.  Not bothering to pull the cigarette from his mouth, he begins to mutter in his gravelly broken english. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: World lie to you. 

Pigpen fiddles with the tape on his left hand, not looking at the camera. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: Mother, father, say to you at night.  Under bed, in closet.  ‘No monster here.’  Tell you world is good place.  Tell you people good.  Lie to you.  World is dark place.  Bad people in it.  People who want hurt you. 

He finally pulls the cig from his mouth, exhaling an absolute cloud. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: World is not place for romance.  No love.  World is not place for dream.  Not real.  You think people good, people nice, people want what’s best for everyone?  People shit.  All shit.  Crime, drug, hate, murder, and you want us believe in good life?  Happy yard, pretty child, barking dog, milkman?!

His veins ar popping and hi neck tendons are in sharp relief.  Matsumoto takes a moment to calm himself, shaking his head, gaze to the floor.  

Pigpen Matsumoto: World lie to you.  Parents lie to you.

His eyes raise to look directly at the camera from under his furrowed brow.

Pigpen Matsumoto: ‘No monster here.’

He scowls and bares his mouth, which is missing more than a few teeth, gritting them and slapping his chest. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: Monster here.  Wakarudesho?!  Monster.  Here. 

Pipgen smiles.  It’s not a fun thing to see. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: PLANET MOTHERFUCKER not want money.  Not want fame.  Not want suckjob from press.

To emphasize this, he makes a dismissive jacking off motion.  

Pigpen Matsumoto: Pigpen Matsumoto will never be happy.  But Pigpen Matsumoto maybe rest once every one of you has been bled dry.  And PLANET MOTHERFUCKER start with Colton brothers.  Bitch brothers.  You will weep to mom Colton, dad Colton.  ‘You said no monsters here!  But Pigpen and Terry Trash gave us new asshole, made our mouth smile too big with knife, tore new nostril in our face.’  Fuck you.

He stands, stiffly, getting to the feet that are attached to legs that long gave up the ghost.  He drops his cigarette to the floor, snuffs it, and fires up a new one. 

Pigpen Matsumoto: Terry Trash!  Maim time.  

From off camera, we can hear a loud, twangy voice yell out “Kanpai!!”  Pigpen grins, then flips the camera off–then grabs it in a clattering bit of chaos before throwing it against a wall at full speed, causing the feed to drop to static.  



Tag Team Match



We head backstage to find the terrifying monster Lars Von Bremen stalking through a garage door entrance to the arena, dressed in a big red leather jacket, a white sleeveless, and black jeans. He lights up a Swisher Sweet, the light from the lighter illuminating his big, ugly head. He breathes a huge plume of smoke, continuing to hunt in the parking garage. 


But wait…what’s this? Out of the corner of his eye, Lars sees one Max Towers…wearing a purple dress shirt and gray slacks, bee-lining it down a hallway. He’s with his girlfriend, the voluptuous Barbie Kellers, who is having the opposite reaction of her beau…in fact, she doesn’t look one iota intimidated.


The spray-tanned beauty stomps directly towards Lars, drawing an anxious Max back around the corner in protest.


Max Towers: Barb, please! Don’t!


Barbie Kellers: Fuck this! If you won’t stand up for yourself, I WILL!


Lars looks amused by it all, but Barbie isn’t playing. She’s dealt with bullies like this her entire life.


Barbie Kellers: Hey fatso! Yah, I’m talking to you! The guy with the burnt nutsack hairs on his head!


Lars breathes a huge cloud of fake cigar smoke out towards Max before turning his attention to Barb.


Lars Von Bremen: Ms. Kellers…how nice to meet you. Damn, Teeny, I think she should have challenged Miranda for the Sin City Champion.


Lars lets out a laugh, highly amusing himself.


Lars Von Bremen: If everything is proportional, is Teeny’s dick like fucking a toy version of Mr. Teen’s?


Barbie erupts with the ferocity of a mama bear, drawing a cheer from the inside of the Epicenter.


Barbie Kellers: And I thought NC-17 was the lowest of the low. You’re disgusting. Preying on, uh…disadvantaged people…makes you feel like a big man, huh? Well you made your fucking point, alright? Get a life you CREEP.


Barbie swats the Swisher out of Lars’ mouth with the confidence of a fool, causing Max Towers to wince and cover his eyes in the background. But Lars isn’t even phased. He smiles, simply removing another Swisher Sweet from his pocket and lighting it up. He blows the smoke once again towards Max.


Lars Von Bremen: Not my point. Mr. Teen’s point. And, no, I haven’t made it. Because Teeny, the little champion, is still here. He still thinks he can come in this building. 


And he still thinks he can be with you. 


Lars pushes Barbara aside, not roughly, in a fashion gently, but his power over this older woman is very clear. She protests, but can’t do much. Lars towers over Max, breathing more smoke down on the little man.


Lars Von Bremen: Leave, Max. Leave Vegas. Leave wrestling. Leave her behind. Just…leave. If you do this, I won’t take everything from you. Mr. Teen won’t hunt you. You have until Warrior’s Code. If you are still here…


Lars breathes in the night air. It’s cold, it stinks of car exhaust and trash and the desperation of Las Vegas. 


Lars Von Bremen: Beautiful night. 


Lars takes another big puff of his fake little cigarillo and walks away.


Barbie shoots Max a confident smile.


Barbie Kellers: God, what a loser. I bet he gets like, no pussy. Well, whatever. We said our piece, he said his, he can go fuck off now.


Max gulps as he watches the monster stalk off.


Max: Yeah. Right.


The camera fades from the skeptical look, leaving the audience feeling uneasy.



The camera opens up on Kid Lucha in the back. He looks nervous, checking his back, watching every corner, clearly on the lookout for the Coltons. 


Kid Lucha: Okay, fuck it, I showed up to the show, I made my appearance, no one wants to interview me, I’m –


Benny Colton: Wouldn’t say “no one,” fucko.


Kid Lucha turns. He immediately looks to run, but he runs into Dennis Colton.


Dennis Colton: Going somewhere?


Benny Colton: Nah, he ain’t. Not until we get a word in with him and his shitbag friend.


Kid Lucha audibly gulps, almost in a manner that is cartoonish.


Kid Lucha: Guys, listen, I don’t know where Max is and-


Dennis PLANTS a hard right directly on KL’s jaw. Kid Lucha falls backward and is immediately caught by Benny.


Benny Colton: I don’t think he heard you, big man. I guess we have to repeat ourselves.


Kid Lucha: Seriously, I didn’t know what his plans were! I didn’t have anything to do with-


Benny throws KL into a wall, where his head collides with the brick. Again, he doesn’t fall down, but rather ends up in the arms of Dennis Colton, who locks his arms around KL’s neck and begins to choke him.


Dennis Colton: Can’t believe you were dumb enough to show yourself tonight kid. After what your pal did to our family.


Kid Lucha: I’m…sorry…I…didn’t-


Benny plants a punch to the gut of KL.


Dennis Colton: Where’s your boy?


Kid Lucha tries to say something, but his lips are beginning to go blue from the choke.


Benny Colton: I mean, I don’t care if you kill him, but if we want an answer…


Dennis Colton drops Kid Lucha, who sputters and gasps.


Kid Lucha: I…please…I…didn’t…know…I…don’t…know…


Benny boots Kid Lucha in the face. He looks at Dennis.


Benny Colton: What do you think, cousin?


Dennis Colton: He’s probably telling the truth. If he’s dumb enough to be here tonight, he probably doesn’t know where Max is.


Benny Colton: Damn. All right, dummy. We’re gonna have you pass along a message to your partner so he can get his affairs in order. You ready?


The lads don’t wait until Kid Lucha is ready, though. They proceed to stomp mudholes in Kid Lucha, leaving him utterly battered and broken on the ground. 


Dennis Colton: Think he can remember all that?


Benny Colton: If not, we can always tell him again later.


Benjamin plants one more boot into Kid Lucha’s ribs before he and his cousin walk away.

IAM Vs. Mike de los Huesos

Singles Match



We fade into the back. Johnny Patriot is backstage, signing autographs for children and being a REAL AMERICAN HERO. He signs t-shirts, hats, posters, Flintstones vitamins, everything.


Child 1: Wow Johnny Patriot, you sure are a real American hero.


Child 2: Yeah Mr. Patriot, you’re a real swell representation of all things good and American.


Johnny Patriot: Thank you, my fellow Americans! You are only children now but the future is yours. Remember what our forefathers said: The United States of America is about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And you bring me happiness! Now get out of here! Go enjoy the rest of the show.


Patriot ruffles their hair. I’ As the children walk away, happy with their autographs and their renewed sense of civic pride, Johnny Patriot turns to walk away.


And runs directly into CICADA.


Johnny Patriot: Oh! It’s you. 


CICADA says nothing. He just stares at Johnny.


Johnny Patriot: I’d offer you a good American handshake but I don’t know…if you’re even American. As a matter of fact…I don’t know anything about you. 


CICADA says nothing. He just stares at Johnny.


Johnny Patriot: Right. Well, I won’t tell anyone your secret, then.


CICADA says nothing. He just stares at Johnny.


Johnny Patriot: That’s too true.


CICADA says nothing. He just stares at Johnny.


Johnny Patriot: No, being American is the only thing I know. Thank you for defending my nephew’s honor by attacking Ryan Samuels. 


CICADA says nothing. He just stares at Johnny.


Johnny Patriot: Well, gotta go. Be seeing you!


Johnny Patriot walks away, confused and maybe even a little unsettled. CICADA continues to say nothing as the camera fades out.



In just a few minutes, Alex Kincaid will face the greatest challenge of his SHOOT Project career. He made it past Ayumi – even if she’d nearly kicked his head into the third row and tried to rip his shoulder apart – and any victory over a hall of famer should be cause for celebration. But now the works got to be done again. He paces back and forth in an empty hallway. In just two weeks, his scruffy looking beard has already started to grow back. His shoulder length brown hair has been slicked back to keep it out of his eyes when the fists start flying…but the eyes are the same. Waiting on the starting gun. Like Heinlein said, you don’t fear the gunshot. You’re just ready to run.


????: They’re going to bring a fight to you. I hope you’re ready.


Kincaid stops and looks back over his shoulder. SHOOT Projects COO Dan Stein watches him pace back and forth with a stern look on his own face. Kincaid shakes his arms, trying to get some feeling back in his cooling forearms and keep himself loose.


Kincaid: Last week wasn’t a fluke. I hear what people are saying, and I’m sure everyone would like it to be…but it wasn’t.


Stein chuckles and shakes his head, folding his own arms in front of him, cane in his right hand.


Dan Stein: I know it wasn’t a fluke. I knew Kincaid the wrestler a long time ago. I know entirely what you’re capable of out in that ring. I just don’t know who I’m dealing with now. And that Moriton and Mr. Ho…


Kincaid scowls and pivots around to face him. His eyes narrow and he stares Stein down with a glare that has made lesser men run for cover. But Dan Stein is Dan Stein and before he ever put on a suit and started working in an office he’s faced down plenty of Kincaids. His lack of reaction only seems to aggravate the former Iron Fist Champion even more. 


Kincaid: What? You came down here to tell me I’m going to lose, is that it? You know, you’re a suit now. You’re corporate. I’m your big new signing aren’t I? Shouldn’t you be WANTING me to succeed, Stein? Shouldn’t you be rooting for me? You wanted me back here. We both know you don’t want me to go to waste.


He turns away again and takes a few steps down the hall like he’s leaving the conversation. It’s Stein laughing again that stops him. Kincaid turns and Stein is shaking his head like he’s heard the joke of the week. His response is targeted, with a sneer of the other mans name at just the right moment to really punch it in.


Dan Stein: You think I was the only one that wanted you back here? Are you kidding me? Listen, Alexander, I’m not the only guy who makes decisions around here. There was someone else who thought you deserved a second chance. Someone who ALSO made an argument for you. Someone the board thought was worth listening to. We had to put up a hell of an argument to get you back in here. Because I remember you. I remember a sneering, arrogant dick who thought he knew better than anyone and thought he had a god given right to hurt anybody that disagreed with him. Talking about me wanting you here…I stuck my neck out for you, and I don’t even know if you deserve to be here.


Kincaid looks like he’s been punched in the gut. He takes a nervous step back, his posture shrinking a bit and he stops in place. 


Kincaid: Everything I ever did, I did for people like us.You know what this is. Every week a dozen new kids get into wrestling schools with a dream to be something special. And we put them in there in matches they can’t win, in stipulations that can’t do anything but hurt them, against monsters and psychopaths who only care about getting their names out there no matter who they had to hurt. We’ve seen it, Stein. You’ve seen it. Good guys get paralyzed in their 20s because promoters pushed them a little bit further every time till they fell apart. Kids with worlds of potential gone. Back then…back then I thought I knew the answers. I was fighting to make this thing better. It has to change. Because you know the bullshit everyone tells us to do IS bullshit. You know nobody walks away.


Stein steps towards him and, this time, Kincaid takes a step in of his own. The audience can be heard buzzing excitedly in the arena at the possibility of the situation escalating. 


Dan Stein: Seems to me like you did just that. You can talk a big game about wanting to protect wrestling, and maybe fool a few people around here. But I see through your bullshit. I remember exactly who we’re dealing with. The only thing that gives me any comfort about putting up with you is that you’re high risk, high reward. Because I know one way this goes. You have a few matches, you look good, maybe you pick up a few wins – but then the honeymoon phase ends. Maybe you take a few losses, maybe the wins are too hard to get, whatever. You’ll go quiet. Then one day we’ll call you up for a booking and you won’t answer your phone. And that’s the day where I’ll get to go ‘There’s the Alexander Kincaid I remember.’ 


The opening notes to Kincaid’s theme song hit the speaker, announcing that it’s time to make his way to the ring. Kincaid shifts his weight from one foot to the other, staring at Stein like he’d like this to go further than just words. But Stein just nods his head past the other man toward the ring.


Stein: They’re playing your song, drink it in. Don’t let this be the last time we’ll hear it.


Kincaid scowls and turns away from him to head off to the ring. Dan Stein is left standing in the hallway staring after him before we cut away to ringside.


Three Way Dance



The belt was draped over her right shoulder.  She preferred it snug around her waist, but Laura Seton certainly wasn’t going to be caught standing around more than a handful of minutes.  After all, the World Championship was a serious title and that meant serious weight!  At least over-the-shoulder she could transfer between right and left.  The arena crowd cheered her appearance on the jumbotron as she walked the back halls of The Epicenter.  It wasn’t long before she saw someone of interest.


Someone who could be of much further interest should things fall her way on Revolution.  There now stood, just a few feet away, the man who led the faction with his name literally all over it, Joshua Breedlove–the arena fans again erupting seeing his presence.  Laura cocks a small grin.


Laura Seton: Probably guessing you think it looks better on you, eh?


Breedlove: Ooo, that’s a tough question. You’re a smokeshow, but I’m also a smokeshow.


He laughs, crowd pops.


Breedlove: I think we’ll just roll with “it looks great on both of us” and that can be that. You ready for K-Mart Flay Rios? Lil Lexi Gold?


Laura Seton: Look, I know you’re tough on her, but she’s really a challenge in the ring.  Did you watch Master of the Mat last year?  I thought I’d breeze through her in that barbed wire minefield of a ring.  I barely got by.  I was the one bleeding like I went through war.  She’s… well, yeah, she’s a character here, but I can’t just shrug her off.


Breedlove: I can respect skill in the ring, and I appreciate that you’re trying to show her love, but calling her a character is a little bit of a stretch. Either way, I’m pretty confident you’ve got this. We can’t have our little encounter ruined, you know? 


He chuckles.


Laura Seton: Yeah, well, the last time I held a World Title longer than 10 minutes, I lost it in an impromptu match.  I’m glad you have confidence I me, but I’m not looking past anyone.


Breedlove: No that absolutely makes sense. It seems like the office is interested in having more World title matches, too, so the road’s only gonna make like the ice cream and get more rocky. You and me’ll be fun either way, though. I’m looking for–


He stops mid-sentence as the nearby monitor catches his eye. He looks over towards Laura, who’s now tracking, and he nods towards the same monitor. They both look in.



The lights are just bright enough to make out the figure wearing red and gold.  Six feet, four inches of towering female smirking at the camera.  Madison nods as she begins.


Madison Seton: It’s been an eventful month, hasn’t it?  The Empire has expanded.  New champions within SHOOT Project as fandom is, as always, at that fevered pitch.  And, why, we still have the novelty of that new World Champion…


Ain’t that right, Laura?


Just the way you always loved it; just the way it’s always had to be:


Laura Seton on the front fucking page grabbing the big, bold fucking headline.  Because it just sucks when you don’t have any attention.


Ain’t that right, Laura?


Oh, let’s not cause confusion here!  I’m happy you won the Championship!  You’re my big sis, someone I admired for a chunk of my life, oh yes!  I’m very excited for you!


Seriously.  If anyone ever knew what you went through just to reach where you are, it’s me.  I saw firsthand those struggles as an elementary schooler, as a junior high kid, even high school–those late high school years when I tailed you around in LEGACY and the start of your SHOOT career.


I saw you whip the audience into a frenzy.  Bruise yourself.  Strain muscles.  Bleed from the nose and forehead.  I saw you fucking suffer from this sport!!



And I saw you stay with it.  I heard you say you had to stay with your goals.  If there was anything worthwhile I learned from you that stuck with me?  It was that.  Plus, you couldn’t give up because you were too stubborn and you always had to be a winner.


Ain’t that right, Laura?


So when you beat Azraith?  Okay, I was shocked.  I stood looking at Jack mouth wide open, almost like the night before when—well, I’ll keep that from your virgin ears.  Oh yes, it was a surprise, but oh yes, it was a moment of pride.  Because there she was.  My sister.  The great Laura Seton finally holding the one World Championship that matters.


SHOOT Project.


The greatest fucking federation ever.  And there you were.  YouWorld Heavyweight Champion.  A Seton.  Once upon a time, my favorite Seton.  My blood was–IS–the World Champion.  I applaud you, I really do, Laura.


But I’m also beyond fucking pissed at you.  Because once again, there you are stealing headlines.  Once again, I have to be peppered with questions about you!


Oh, no.  I’m not Madison Seton anymore.  Just like back in high school, “Laura Seton’s little sister.”  I had to overcome you on the court in Wisconsin.  And I did.  And my first semester in Philly?  Then transferring to K-State?  Ope!  There it is again!


“Laura Seton’s sister.”


I make gains, massive leaps bounds.  Become a top WNBA pick and explode on the scene!  Win a WNBA championship!


I was finally “Madison Seton!”


I could finally answer at a whole press conference or sit-down special and not once have that fucking name of yours come up.  It was all about what I was doing and the history I was writing.


We were separate entities!


But noooo… Laura just has to have that spotlight.  Gobbling it up like it’s her life force.  Because the world stops when Laura Seton is out of public view.


Ain’t that right, Laura?


I give you credit–when you retire you really drop off the face of the Earth.  Hiding two kids from public view?  Not a single interview or article?  You score huge on the privacy scale!  Hell, I’m sure there’s more you’re hiding.  And that’s fine, but Jesus Christ, woman, you literally keep it to yourself.


But you just had to come back.  Because you felt failure at one certain thing.  You just couldn’t win the greatest prize in wrestling history.  And that bloated ego of yours just had to have it.  You couldn’t stand the thought of SHOOT Project running again and you missing out on that chapter, even if about a decade ago.


Kudos, Laura.  You did it.  But now?


You’re about to face Lexi Gold and if you can dispose of her?  You get Joshua Breedlove.


The Man of The Empire.


Author of one of the greatest reigns in World Championship history–while you simply revel at the fact you could keep this one longer than two hours.  You’re going to regret facing Breedlove, Laura.  I know you will.  Because whatever passion you may have for wrestling now?  He has more in just his little finger.  You are facing a whole Empire, Laura.  You are going to be crushed like a tinfoil sculpture.  Watch for Josh, watch for Jack, watch for me.  Because it’s going to be a displeasure for you as you head down this road… that is, if you get by the ever-so-strange Lexi.


I’m watching and waiting, Laura.


But if you get lucky and get past us?  I hope you hold that title for a long, long time.  Because then I want to be the one to rip out of those fucking hands of yours.  And let you become the past, once and for all.  You can’t stay up there forever.


Ain’t that right, Laura?

We cut back to Laura Seton and Joshua Breedlove.  Seton has a look of mild frustration as she looks in Breedlove’s direction.  A look that has disappointment begin mixing in as she sees Breedlove’s initial expression.  She speaks quietly.


Laura Seton: Oh, Maddie…


He stares at the monitor, watching it all unfold. He’s definitely annoyed, but he breaks his attention long enough to look back at THE SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion.

Breedlove: Sorry to cut this short, but I need to go have a conversation with another Seton. I’ll come say hello after you and Lexi wrap up your business. Good luck.



Laura gives a look that says, “Oh boy…” as she turns the other way.  But before she can get more than a single step, a new figure has appeared.  Blocking her way right now, literally, and whom will block her figurative path tomorrow night.


Lexi Gold clutches her weird doll against her chest; she then starts examining the back of Laura’s head, pretending to be shocked at what she discovered. 


Lexi Gold: You are looking a little bald, but the new look suits you better. 


Laura lets out a loud, deep breath of frustration before facing her adversary.


Laura Seton: Ah yes, America’s newest hair stylist.  Get your own chair at the ritzy salon, yet?


Lexi smirks and strokes her doll’s hair.


Lexi Gold: People are afraid of me, Laura. I evacuated that dump in the hurry, much like fans do when you wrestle. It’s funny, maybe management is on my side after all. It got me a title match tonight.  


Laura Seton: Second title match in about as many months.  Honestly?  Congratulations.  You’re getting what I was hoping for you about a year ago.  I did dream of this scenario, though not–


Laura takes a noted interest as Lexi continues with her doll’s hair.  Blonde locks.  Quite familiar ones at that.  Laura raises her eyebrows.


Laura Seton: That’s not… … is it…?


Lexi’s doll comes to life as it blinks slowly and laughs at Laura. 


Lexi Gold: It’s your precious hair. You barely noticed that now? It seems to me you are losing sight of everything, grandma. 


Laura’s gaze narrows.


Laura Seton: Now you listen up you creepy little goofball, you make another crack like that and you’re gonna see some stars tonight.  “Grandma.”  I just sniped by my own sister, I don’t need this from you right now.


She sees the doll blink again.


Laura Seton: And you gotta put that thing away because it’s freaking me out.


Lexi Gold: You should be more concerned with me rather than my doll. I hold the powers… for now. I’m already in your head. When we go out there, I aim to destroy you, paint you crimson red to match mine and finally etch my name back in the title history. 


Laura seems to got another place mentally as her eyes now take an odd look as she steps closer.


Laura Seton: Do it!  Cut me open like last year!  Remember that?  Hm?  I got a scar on my scalp no thanks to you and your wire.  Split me one more time!  Make some history!  Do it, Lexi!  DO IT!


A large mirror magically appears from out of nowhere across from where they are standing. Laura stares at it and eventually it cracks. Lexi watches on with evil intent in her eyes.


Lexi Gold: Don’t cover up your fear with bravery. It’s too late now. Hell, you couldn’t handle strands of hair removed from you, so what makes you certain you can handle blood dripping down your face. I want you to take a real good look at your reflection in the mirror. While your appearance may look normal now, soon you will witness your downfall. It will be unbearable to look at, resembling the scars and the dead look such as what you see with my dolls. So, prepare to meet your reality.


Lexi leans in close and whispers something into Laura’s ear before walking off. 


Tag Team Match



Without warning, ‘Golden’ Burkhalter takes one look at the Collins Twins, then a small rueful glance at Izzy Sia on the apron–and rolls out of the ring!  Sia immediately throws her arms out in confusion, and for their part, Michael and Rowland Collins are darting their eyes between Burkhalter on the floor and Izzy in their corner, still stanced for combat. 

Scott Kamura: Collins’ acting like they’re unsure if this is some sort of trick, and I don’t blame them!

Dutch Harris: Yeah, but when did you ever know these two to use a misdirect like this? 

Scott Kamura: I put absolutely nothing past Nate Robideau–he might be retired, but his influence is still casting a long shadow!

Izzy drops to the floor herself, walking over to Joey…who begins walking backwards from her up the ramp.  The crowd starts to boo, but he’s not paying them any mind, mouthing “I’m sorry, I can’t” to her with legitimate sadness in his eyes.  Izzy’s confusion turns to anger, and she begins shouting at him, rapid bursts of Tagalog mixed with liberal usages of words like “fuck” and “loser”.  Michael Collins hangs over the top rope, adding in his own opinion, and Joey ‘Golden’ Burkhalter responds by walking backwards on the ramp, jawing and grabbing his crotch!  The crowd erupts into fresh boos!!

Dutch Harris: All this chaos–I don’t think anyone planned for this except for Joey B! 

Scott Kamura: The Collins Twins now arguing with Izzy Sia and ‘Golden’ Burkhalter…but as the legal man, if he doesn’t return to the ring, this is over for Blackhawk Fight Gym! 

Burkhalter has turned his attention to the crowd, and he’s now yelling back at them, alternating between goading people to jump the barrier, flexing, and grabbing his dick–needless to say the boos are reaching deafening levels!  Izzy has waved off the Collins boys, and is now screaming up the ramp at her best friend, begging for him to return with a mix of sincerity and full-on insult.  She’s just about to advance after him–when the bell rings!!

Samantha Coil: Ladies and gentlemen…your winners, via count out, THE COLLINS TWINS!!

Izzy is clearly struggling between her natural desire to protest the loss and her desire to give chase to her friend, who is still at the entrance, having just spit at a mouthy fan!  She finally squares her shoulders, stalking to the timekeepers table, and upends it, sending the bell and papers scattering, screaming out in fury!  She hops the rail and begins a stalking stomp to the back, clearly fed up!

Dutch Harris: I don’t know what to think!  Full pretzel in my head status. 

Scott Kamura: Regardless, Izzy Sia clearly wasn’t in on whatever the deception was–I’ve seen her angry, but never like that!! 

Michael sits in the corner of the ring laughing to himself. Rowland walks over to ring side, asking for a microphone. The fans in the SHOOT Project Epicenter are still buzzing from Joey Burkhalter walking out on his tag team partner. As Rowland steps into the center of the ring, he takes a deep breath. Michael pulls himself up and makes his way to his brother’s side.

Rowland Collins: This…this is your new Golden Boy, Dan Stein? I remember a time years ago when you ate shit for this company, and now your Golden Boy walks out on matches, leaving his gym mate to fend for herself.

Michael takes the microphone from his brother’s outstretched hand. He, too, has to take a deep breath.

Michael Collins: We even got new duds for this show, Man, now look at us. We don’t want to win this way. We want to earn it.

Rowland takes the microphone back from his brother.

Rowland Collins: You promised us, SHOOT Project. You promised us the best, not headcases like that cunt over there. You promised us glory. There’s no glory in winning by count out.

Michael leans into the mic.

Michael Collins: We’ll do it, sure, but it’s not what we want.

Rowland Collins: No. We were promised TALENT. We were promised GRIT.

Michael Collins: Give us what we want!

Rowland Collins: We want HEART.

Michael Collins: We want VIOLENCE.

Rowland Collins: God dammit, we wa–

Screeeeeeech. Their microphones cut out. The Collins Twins are right there with the fans, wondering what the fuck is going on. Silence for a moment.

Then pyro shoots across the stage in an X. BANG BANG BANG BANG BANG. 


Scott Kamura: WHAT!? 


A large number of fans in the arena EXPLODE to their feet. On the SHOOTron, three words fade up.

Scott Kamura: IT CAN’T BE.


Thin Lizzy’s “Bad Reputation” continues as two people step through the curtain: the massive CJ Nelson, in his black leather “Sons of Fenris” kutte over a Santa Muerte T-shirt, and Jolene (née Jared) Walsh, her long blond hair in a ponytail, with strands ever-so-lovingly positioned to frame her face, in a cropped Deathmatch Debutante tee and powder-blue low-rise cargo pants. CJ tugs on his beard, cracking his neck with a smile, the eyepatch on his right eye giving him a younger Del Carver feel, while Jolene runs from side to side on the stage, trying to hype up the already-hyped crowd even further!


Dutch Harris: Dan Stein can’t keep getting away with it! He’s signed two more HUGE names to SHOOT Project’s already talented roster??


Scott Kamura: Not just any HUGE names, these two people are in the upper echelon of the greatest tag teams in SHOOT Project history. Three-time SHOOT Project Tag Team Champions! This is a GIGANTIC signing, Dutch. Dan is taking a tag team division and turning it on its head with the returns of The Collins Twins and Long Island Hardcore!


CJ and Jolene have microphones now, as they wait patiently for the crowd to die down.


CJ Nelson: Now… correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe you were saying you wanted the best?


Jolene Walsh: To paraphrase a Clive Barker movie, you called, we came, and oh do we have such sights to show you.


CJ Nelson: I know, I know, Mikey, Rowland, it’s been a long, long time. A lot’s changed in the past… oh god, what’s it been, like 8 years since we were on TV?


Jolene Walsh: Something like that. Long enough for me to get this spectacular rack.


CJ Nelson: But I promise you, we ain’t lost a step. We’re still the same team that has kicked your ass from pillar to post every time you’ve come anywhere close to sniffing the top of the tag ranks…


Jolene Walsh: Well, we’re a little different.


CJ Nelson: Don’t get bogged down in the details, hon.


Jolene Walsh: Fine. The point is, we’re still more than capable and, truly, more than happy to send you Belfast bitches back to the Emerald Isle before you could say póg mo thóin.


The Collins Twins nod their heads at each other. Michael takes the microphone from his brother again.


Michael Collins: Now this is more like it. The team from the shite-est part of New York has returned. 


The fans “ooooh” in the arena. 


Michael Collins: This is the stuff that Danny Boy promised us. The plot thickens, our old friends. 


Michael hands the microphone back to his brother. 


Rowland Collins: When I tell you that I did NOT see this coming… didn’t ye cunts and we cunts have a go at it in the past?


Michael Collins (leaning in): Aye, Rolly. I seem to remember a certain match those cunts bested us in.


Michael looks at Rowland, who leans into the microphone. Then, both Jolene and CJ speak into theirs at the same time.


All Four: An Irish Table Dance.


The Collins Twins look up at Long Island Hardcore. Long Island Hardcore are still bobbing with the electricity in the arena. 


Michael Collins: What of it? Shall we give it another go?


CJ and Jolene look at each other, confused.

Jolene Walsh: “Shite-est part of New York?” We’re nowhere near Schenectady.


CJ Nelson: Now, far be it from us to give you too much shit about your creativity–


Jolene Walsh: What are you talking about? That’s, like, half our schtick.

CJ Nelson: –but as I recall, the last time we had one of those matches, we beat the absolute brakes off of you.


Jolene Walsh: So instead, allow us to give you a chance to level the playing field, huh? Now, we don’t have anything quite so specific as an Irish Table Dance in mind…


CJ Nelson: But since we’re talking New York, and we are, of course, Long Island Hardcore, how about we make it a good ol’ fashioned New York Street Fight?

Jolene Walsh: Anything goes, tornado tag rules, falls count anywhere, and we’ll see once and for all which of us can call ourselves the best, without the fickleness of particle board getting involved?


The Collins Twins both grin. They look at each other and share a fist bump.


Rowland Collins: Aye, lass. You and that giant fucker versus me and me brother one more time? That sounds like a party.


Michael Collins (leaning in): YER ON!


The crowd absolutely loses their collective mind as the match is made, and CJ and Jolene smirk, taking in the cheers.


CJ Nelson: It warms my cold, dead little heart to hear you say that, boys.


Jolene Walsh: Just… remember the old saying, “be careful what you wish for,” because I can tell you… you’re gonna get it.


Rowland mines a curtsy, while Michael flips a cap he doesn’t have. Rolly laughs to himself. 


Rowland Collins: We know. 


Rowland drops the microphone to the mat. Thin Lizzy’s “Bad Reputation” hits again, and the LIHC video graces the SHOOTron.


Scott Kamura: What a match! Warrior’s Code just got a little more…


Dutch Harris: Please don’t. 


Scott Kamura: …Hardcore!!

Dutch Harris: There it is.



Scott Kamura: We’re headed to the back where a Breedlove with a head full of steam seems to be making his way to the locker room area! 


Dutch Harris: We’re not really sure what he’s got on his mind, but surely we’ll know soon.


Like clockwork, the former World Champion finds the locker room door he’s looking for and assertively shoves his way in, walking in on a very surprised Jack Johnson and Madison Seton. He realizes he’s caught them off guard and takes a breath before getting into it.


Joshua Breedlove: Jack, take a walk, please.


Jack cocks his head to the side, concerned. Madison just elbows him, encouraging him to listen. El Paria gets up and walks by Breedlove who keeps his gaze focused on the Sin City Championship challenger and number one contender.


Breedlove: I appreciate all of the fire and the hype, Maddie, I do. I get it. I understand where you’re coming from and how you feel, but let me be very, very clear about something.


He pauses again, hoping he’s not coming across too hot or angry. Before he gets back into it, she chooses to interject.


Madison Seton: Okay, we seem to be on different wavelengths here.  I–


She could barely begin that next sentence before Breedlove spoke again.


Breedlove: We are, and that’s probably on me. Expectations setting and all that, but… hmm. First. That was a fucking great promo you cut out there. You made a statement, and I LOVED that. Loved that you just went for it. Love that you didn’t hold back. THAT is what I want to see out of you, always. If you can do that every time you go out with a microphone, you’re going to be a legend in this business. Simple as.


He stops. Here comes the bad news.


Breedlove: But I don’t want your help fighting this battle.


He waits and lets that sink in.


Breedlove: Don’t get me wrong. I appreciate that you bought right in. I know that this was a long decision coming for you, and I don’t want you to get discouraged, but I know there’s obvious history there and things you want to work out, so understand me when I tell you… there will come a time for that. It’s just not right now.


She opens her mouth.  Her gears are turning mentally, but nothing comes out of her mouth for a number of seconds.


Madison Seton: But… … well, yeah, but… don’t you–


Taking a gamble on the rest of that sentence, he cuts her off once more.


Breedlove: Lemme put it to you like this, okay? The story of Madison Seton and Laura Seton? It’s not meant to be a chapter in the Book of Breedlove. You aren’t an accessory to me or the Empire, you know? That story is your story and it gets its own spotlight and is yours to tell. Do you get me?


The two stare eye-to-eye, with Madison’s glare losing its aggressiveness as the seconds pass.  She puts her hands up, almost reacting like that last line were a veiled threat.


Madison Seton: Okay.  Okay… Backing off.


Breedlove: You’re amazing, thank you. Now, please go win the Sin City Championship and start the climb we know is coming from you.



MADISON SETON Vs. Miranda DC (c)


Singles Match