The screen is black.
“Sarabande” by George Handel begins to play as a narrator begins to speak.
In 1970, writer and artist Walt Kelly famously said “We have seen the enemy…and he is us”.
The images shown are all monochromatic. The first image of Azraith being beaten is shown, it creeps along slowly, forcing the viewer to watch as each assault against the World Champion’s flesh are shown.
Tonight, the SHOOT Project trembles before an enemy it has yet been able to combat.
Donovan King, Kilgore Stochansky, Pestalance, and Adrian Corazon lord over Azraith’s body.
They hold Sovereign over the company, this realm they have claimed for their own.
A shot of Trey Willett’s lifeless body is shown.
None have been able to stop them.
Jester is shown next, a still shot, begging for help.
There are no more heroes.
Eddie E. stands in the center of the ring, the five of them mocking the fans.
On a night meant to celebrate SHOOT Project’s past…
Cade Sydal is shown holding his Iron Fist Championship high in the air as Lennox Ferguson is shown cradling his head.
…will the SHOOT Project’s future be decided?
Charles Brandon Magnus and Mr. Heart stand opposite from The UK Dragon and Jaime Alejandro.
Who among you shall rise?
Jester is shown, cuffed to the ring ropes, his head dropped in shock and shame.
Who among you will defiantly stand against the coming storm?
Sinnocence and Osbourne Kilminster look into one another’s eyes longingly, saying nothing and hoping for everything.
In a land where there are no heroes…
The Crimson Riot preen and posture while a secondary shot of Crash Carver doing the same is next.
…who shall find it within themselves to simply do what is right?
Thomas Manchester Black glares down at Pestalance, ready for a war.
Will we ever find a way to be free once more?
A final, damning, shot of Jason Johnson, bloodied and unmoving, is shown.
Or are we doomed to remain under siege forevermore?
The screen goes black as the helmet fades back in.
Heroes are not made…
…they are BORN
“Fever Dream” by Tyler Bates kicks in.
The SHOOT Project Proudly Presents…
We go to the ring, and the camera slowly pans over the setup. We see the standard SHOOT Project ring, with the Under Siege logo on the canvas. However, on opposite corners, there are two tall metal poles set up, almost ten feet in the air. A thick steel cable is stretched across the ring, between the two poles.
Hanging from the cable, above the ring, are the SHOOT Project World Tag Team Championship Title Belts. The camera slowly zooms in on the belts, as the lights dim all over the arena, leaving only the spotlight above the ring shining.
Samantha Coil enters the ring, microphone in hand.
Samantha: Good evening fans, and welcome to SHOOT PROJECT: UNDER SIEGE!
The fans roar in excitement as Samantha continues…
Samantha: Our opening match this evening is a HIGHWIRE TO HELL Tag Team Match, and will determine the new SHOOT Project World Tag Team Champions!
The cheers intensify, but they quickly turn to loud jeers and boos, as Raining Blood by Slayer starts to echo throughout the SHOOT Project Epicenter. The Video Wall at the far end of the Epicenter lights up, and two men appear from behind the curtain and start to confidently make their way down the ramp, and up the aisle towards the ring.
Both men are wearing red ring gear, with the Aztec Eagle Logo. The smaller of the two has the logo on the leg of his long tights, the larger has it on the front of his singlet. Ignoring the hostile reaction of the crowd, the two men enter the ring, leer at Samantha for a moment, and then head to the far corner, where they wait.
Their music fades as Samantha points towards The Crimson Riot, who stand in the far corner, waiting…
Samantha: Introducing first, hailing from El Paso, Texas and weighing in at a combined weight of 515 pounds, here are Evan and Logan Garcia: THE CRIMSON RIOT!
The boos intensify, when suddenly the unmistakable sound of guitar genius Joe Satriani playing Back to Shalla-Bal rips into action. The fans come to their feet and begin to cheer. Sure enough, Crash Carver leaps into view at the top of the ramp, as his entrance video plays behind him.
Crash Carver is not wearing his usual yellow and black ring gear. He is wearing a pair of white boots, and a pair of full length purple tights, with white wings on the legs. He is also wearing a purple spandex top, with the same white wing design, and he has purple armbands around each arm, with the same white wing design. Crash Carver holds out his arms, and sprints down the aisle as fast as he can, holding both his arms out so he can exchange high fives with the fans as he runs. Carver makes a complete lap around the ring, slapping hands with the fans, and then he slides under the bottom rope, leaps to his feet, and pumps his fist in the air, as his music fades.
Samantha: Their opponents…
Before Samantha can even announce Crash Carver, The Crimson Riot go to work. The two men charge Crash Carver, and commence clubbing him brutally over the head and torso with brutal looking forearm smashes. As soon as Carver falls to his knees, Evan Garcia continues to smash him over the head with forearms, but Logan begins to bury brutal looking stomps all over the body of the high flying youngster.
Samantha takes the microphone and flees the ring for safety. Willie Dean is on the outside, and he calls for the bell, and we are underway!
Eryk Masters: Welcome to Under Siege fans, and the title is appropriate, because Crash Carver is Under Siege himself right now! The popular young superstar is basically getting mugged at the hands of The Crimson Riot!
The Other Guy: You know who has the easiest job in the world right now, Masters? Willie Dean. Anything goes in this match, and all you have to do to win is figure out a way to get those World Tag Team Title Belts down from the Highwire To Hell.
The Crimson Riot do not appear interested in going after the Tag Team Title Belts. The two men seem content to lay a brutal beating on Crash Carver, as they continue to swarm all over him and brutalize him with stomps and forearm smashes.
Finally, the two men pull the stunned Crash Carver to his feet, and whip him into the ropes. Carver rebounds off the ropes and The Crimson Riot are there to meet him with a jarring double shoulder block. Crash Carver goes down like a ton of bricks, and Logan Garcia grabs him by the hair and pulls him back up. Logan lifts Carver up for a slam, but Evan drops down on one knee, and Logan slams Crash across Evan’s knee!
The fans moan in unison, as Crash bounces off the leg of Evan Garcia and rolls around on the mat, holding his back in pain. Logan Garcia reaches down and places his knee in the small of Crash’s injured back, and then grabs him by the hair, and pulls his head up. Evan Garcia laughs, and leans down, slapping Crash Carver repeatedly in the face, taunting him.
Eryk Masters: This match isn’t going to last long, if Crash Carver keeps getting manhandled like this, OG. I’d suggest that Xan might want to ask Willie Dean to stop the match – but Xan isn’t even out here tonight!
The Other Guy: He probably knew how bad Carver was going to get stomped, and he was so embarrassed by it he decided to stay backstage! But never mind wondering where Xan is Masters. Let me ask the question everybody wants to ask: WHERE IS THE PURPLE HAZE? Why isn’t HE helping poor Crash Carver?
Eryk Masters: Well, if you and a lot of other people are to be believed, there is no Purple Haze, right OG? That’s just a gimmick that Crash Carver wrestled under in Japan.
The Other Guy: Exactly. Everybody knows that, and because Crash Carver is so stupid, he’s about to get double-teamed into oblivion.
Evan Garcia has stopped slapping Crash, and he finally backs up, and punts Crash Carver right in the face, as Logan holds Carver in place. The boot from Evan connects with deadly impact, and the young man looks almost unconscious. Logan pulls Carver to his feet and grabs one of his arms. Evan Garcia grabs the other arm, and the two men who make up The Crimson Riot throw Crash Carver into the ropes.
Crash Carver careens towards the ropes, but instead of bouncing and rebounding back toward the Crimson Riot, he ducks and slides out of the ring! The fans cheer the fact that Crash seems to have saved himself for the moment. Crash Carver looks into the ring, and then flips The Crimson Riot the middle finger!
As The Crimson Riot look on in anger, Crash Carver drops to his knees, and scurries under the ring! Evan and Logan Garcia look at each other in amazement, and then slowly walk across the ring, looking over the top rope to see where Crash Carver has gone. The camera shot follows them, and it appears obvious that Carver has crawled right under the ring!
Eryk Masters: Well, this is a first. Crash Carver was on the receiving end of a brutal beating, so I guess he has decided to make a strategic retreat, and he has – well, let’s call it like it is – he’s hiding under the ring!
The Other Guy: What kind of stupid bullshit is this? If Carver doesn’t have the balls to get out here and take his beating like a man, then The Crimson Riot should just grab the belts, and put an end to this stupidity. Hey! Looks like Crash Carver is coming out!
Sure enough, the ring skirt starts to move, and Crash Carver emerges from underneath the ring, or who we have to assume it is Crash Carver. This wrestler is wearing the exact same identical outfit that Crash Carver was wearing when he went under in the ring – white boots, and purple tights, muscle shirt, and arms bands with a white wing design.
The only difference is that he is now wearing a purple mask covering his face.
The lights all over the arena turn purple and they start to flicker. A loud rhythmic pounding can be heard over the sound system, and the Benny Benassi Remix of ‘Purple Haze’ by Jimi Hendrix starts to play.
A graphic appears on the Video Wall and on every monitor and screen in the arena:
THE PURPLE HAZE IS HERE.
Eryk Masters: You asked for him OG, and here he is! THE PURPLE HAZE HAS ARRIVED!
The Other Guy: This is SO stupid! That is obviously Crash Carver! He’s the exact same height, weight, and he’s wearing the same outfit that Carver was! Crash just crawled under the ring, pulled the mask on, and now he’s here. This is so pointless!
As the music continues to pound and the purple lights flicker in time with the music, The Purple Haze does an incredible vertical leap, right up to the apron. He then leaps to the top rope, balancing himself. The Crimson Riot are looking at him in shock, when The Haze leaps again, high into the air, and nails the two men with a perfect springboard dropkick, with one boot hitting the face of each man!
The crowd is going crazy, as The Purple Haze has sent The Crimson Riot down to the mat in a heap. The Purple Haze kips up, and nails Logan Garcia with a wicked kneelift right in the face, just as the big man was getting up. As Evan Garcia starts to get up, The Purple Haze leaps into the air again, and executes a perfect spinning kick, hitting Evan on the jaw!
Both members of The Crimson Riot are down!
The Purple Haze scrambles out to the apron, climbs the turnbuckles, and leaps off the top without stopping for a second. He spirals through the air, and manages to land on both members of The Crimson Riot at the same time with a suicide body attack, as the fans continue to blow the roof off the Epicenter!
Eryk Masters: Crash Carver is on fire! I mean – The Purple Haze! Maybe that mask is like spinach for Popeye or something, OG! Ever since Crash put it on, he has been all over the place!
The Other Guy: Stupid tricks or not, this match is still two against one, and that is going to catch up to Crash Carver any second now.
As The Purple Haze starts to stand up, Logan Garcia rears back and buries an awesome straight right hand into his midsection, doubling him over. Evan Garcia follows up with a wild upward kick, which knocks The Haze back down to the mat. The two men grab The Purple Haze by the back of the head, and throw him into the corner. They begin to stomp and kick away at him brutally, just like they did at the beginning of the match, like a two-on-one mugging.
Just like the start of the match, mask or no mask, there is a two on one advantage and now The Crimson Riot are once again beating the hell out of their opponent, who is all alone…
Suddenly, the lights in the arena go out.
A roar of anticipation comes up from the crowd, and a spotlight clicks on, and slowly starts to scan the crowd.
The unmistakable sound of ‘If You Want Blood – You Got It’ by AC/DC starts to play over the epicenter sound system, and the crowd comes unglued.
Eryk Masters: YOU KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS! DIAMOND DEL CARVER IS HERE! DIAMOND DEL CARVER IS BACK!
As the AC/DC continues to blare and the fans are cheering their hearts out, the spotlight finally reaches the upper levels on the epicenter, where we standing amongst the fans…
Standing in the spotlight, the mysterious manager for Crash Carver has appeared. As always, he is wearing a black business suit, and black sunglasses. Xan calmly walks through the crowd toward the ring, with no expression on his face. The camera zooms in tight, but we do NOT see Diamond Del Carver behind him, even though this is the usual ring entrance for The Hardcore Outlaw, and it is his music that is playing.
The Crimson Riot stand over The Purple Haze, who is dazed. Evan and Logan stomp on the masked man some more, as they both point at Xan in the crowd and start yelling. As the two men have their backs turned, and are concentrating on Xan, Diamond Del Carver’s music stops playing, and on the opposite side of the ring, the ring skirt flips into the air. There is a commotion under the ring, and up comes…
It is indeed Crash Carver, wearing the exact same outfit he was when he came down to the ring, the same purple ring gear that the masked man laying at the feet of the Crimson Riot is wearing.
Crash leaps to the apron, through the ropes, and he charges toward the corner. Three-quarters of the way across the ring he leaps into the air, and nails both members of The Crimson Riot on the back of their heads with a high velocity flying lariat.
Logan and Evan Garcia both stumble forward, caught totally by surprise. They did not see this coming, as they obviously thought the man at thought the man at their feet was Crash Carver, and they were expecting Diamond Del Carver to be coming through the crowd instead of Xan. The Crimson Riot turn around, and look at Crash Carver in open mouthed shock. They look down at The Purple Haze in amazement, and then back at Crash Carver, in total disbelief.
The Other Guy: Okay…wait. Wait. What?! Who the?
Eryk Masters: I don’t know who that is the ring with Crash Carver and the Crimson Riot, OG. All I know is that he has the exact same build and outfit as Crash Carver, except he’s also wearing a mask. From the neck down, these two men look identical.
The Other Guy: Yeah but how did…who the…what?!
Eryk Masters: And if anybody tries to tell me that is Diamond Del Carver under that mask, after seeing that wrestler’s build and high flying moves, then they’re obviously high on something. Obviously, Xan played Del Carver’s music and came through the crowd in order to distract The Crimson Riot, so Crash Carver could come back up from under the ring!
In the ring, The Purple Haze slowly gets up, shaking his head to clear the cobwebs from the beating he was just taking. He somersaults forward, but he didn’t need to bother, because The Crimson Riot don’t even try and stop him. The Purple Haze rolls forward, past The Crimson Riot, then he stands up, turns around, and stands right next to Crash Carver.
Eryk Masters is correct. The Purple Haze and Crash Carver are exact duplicates from the neck down, the same height, the same build, the same muscle development, and the same wrestling gear. You can only tell who is who because The Purple Haze is wearing a mask, and Crash Carver is of course sporting his blond hair and huge grin. Carver and The Purple Haze exchange a high five, and then turn toward the Crimson Riot, and once again leap into the air, but this time each one goes after one of the Garcias!
Both members of the Crimson Riot hit the mat in unison from the double dropkick, as the fans in the SHOOT Epicenter continue to cheer their hearts out. Crash and The Haze pull both members of The Crimson Riot to their feet at the same time, whip them into the ropes at the same time, and then both men leap forward at the same time, perform a somersault, come up in front of The Crimson Riot, and then vault both Garcias high into the air with a perfectly timed double monkey flip!
Eryk Masters: Maybe Crash Carver cloned himself, because he and The Purple Haze are working as one unit, a well oiled machine in perfect unison here. You can tell these two men know each other, because no first time Tag Team are going to work this smoothly, it’s just not possible.
The Other Guy: I want to know who this other jerk under the mask is, then. Is he the same guy everybody assumed was Jake Carver in Japan, or is this some new guy? Is this a rookie, or an established name under that mask? I mean, look at that build and wrestling style, that could be anybody! That could be Dan Stein, that could be Patrick Kidd, that could be an old friend of the Carver Family like Kid Wikkid or Layne Jacobs. There are a lot of guys who stand just under 6 feet tall and weigh around 200 pounds, and I WANT TO KNOW WHO THAT IS!
Crash Carver and The Purple Haze continue their symmetrical assault on The Crimson Riot. Both men have pulled The Crimson Riot to their feet again, whipped them into the ropes, and then executed a simultaneous forward roll into a double clothesline! The Crimson Riot are on the mat, and Xan is now calmly prowling around at ringside. He bangs the mat to get the attention of his team, and barks out some orders. Crash nods, and says something to The Purple Haze. The Haze nods, and then laces his fingers together to give Crash Carver a boost – and Crash is reaching for the Tag Team Titles!
From his position on his back, Logan Garcia sees this, and he yells in anger. He rolls over, takes the “three point stance” and charges forward like a bull from a squatting position. He lashes out with fury and clips the back of the knee of The Purple Haze! The Haze screams in pain and collapses, and Crash falls to the mat with him, without having reached the Tag Team Title Belt.
Logan yells something to Evan, and the smaller of the two men in The Crimson Riot slowly gets to his feet. Evan and Logan pull Crash and The Purple Haze to their feet, and whip them into the ropes. Crash and The Haze come off the ropes in unison, but execute a double leapfrog over the Crimson Riot. Both Garcias turn around, and met by a superkick each from Crash Carver and The Purple Haze!
Eryk Masters: I’m amazed at the teamwork between Crash Carver and The Purple Haze here, they are really synchronized in their movements.
The Other Guy: Yeah, it’s like they share the same half a brain.
Evan and Logan Garcia both get to their feet. Evan takes a run at The Purple Haze, and the two men start to exchange wicked punches and chops back and forth, punishing each other. Logan Garcia sends Crash Carver to the mat with a big boot to the face. Logan grabs Crash by the hair, and pulls him to his feet, then scoops him up and walks over to the ropes, and slams Carver all the way outside of the ring, to the floor outside!
Crash almost bounces on the concrete, and then rolls around, holding his back in agony. Logan calmly and slowly exits the ring and heads towards Crash, while in the ring, The Purple Haze and Evan Garcia continue to battle it out, back and forth. Logan reaches down and grabs Crash Carver, scooping him up for another slam.
Crash slides down behind Logan Garcia, and then places both hands on the big man’s back, and starts to shove him full speed, towards the ring post. Garcia isn’t expecting that, and he collides with the post head first. Logan falls to the ground, holding his head.
Crash Carver jumps back up to the apron, but then turns his back on Logan, balances himself on the bottom rope, still standing outside the ring on the apron, and then he springs backward and executes a backward somersault plancha onto the prone body of Logan Garcia!
In the ring, The Purple Haze sees this, and he ducks a chop from Evan Garcia, and charges forward, diving between the ropes so he lands on top of Logan Garcia and Crash Carver! Not to be outdone, Evan Garcia grabs the ropes and uses them to slingshot himself out of the ring, where he lands on top of The Purple Haze, who is already laying on top of Crash Carver, who is laying on top of Logan Garcia!
The sold out crowd comes to their feet in unison, chanting…
HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT!
Eryk Masters: This match is turning out to be everything we hoped it would be, and more!
The Other Guy: Match? What match? This isn’t a wrestling match, this looks like a four car pileup on the I-15 outside Las Vegas!
Xan is now prowling around the ringside area, however he does not get too close to the pile of men, knowing that soon they will be up, swinging again. Sure enough, all four men slowly and painfully start to get up. Evan Garcia walks over to the timekeeper’s table, and grabs one of the steel chairs, folding it up.
As The Purple Haze turns around, Evan Garcia swings, but The Haze ducks, throwing the smaller of the Garcias off balance. As Evan steadies himself, The Purple Haze leaps into the air and dropkicks the steel chair directly into the face of Evan Garcia!
Logan Garcia is standing over Crash Carver now, stomping on the head of the young superstar. Garcia pulls Crash up, and attempts to whip Carver into the ringside crowd barrier. He is successful in executing the whip, but Crash leaps into the air, lands feet first on the crowd barrier, and then instantly leaps backward, nailing Logan Garcia right in the face with a flying back elbow!
The Purple Haze pulls the stunned Evan Garcia to his feet, and drapes his body over the crowd barrier, so Evan is hanging overtop of the barrier, his body facedown, half in the crowd, half out. Crash Carver pulls Logan to his feet, and drags the bigger man to the barrier, laying him facedown right next to Evan.
Crash Carver and The Purple Haze roll into the ring, and run as fast as they can to the opposite side. The both bounce and rebound off the ropes at the exact same time, and then in perfect symmetry, they leap into the air, and land on the top rope, feet first. They both stand there, side by side balancing on the top rope for a brief second, and then they both jump off the top rope, outside the ring, where they land together, on top of the bodies of The Crimson Riot!
HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT!
Eryk Masters: That was unbelievable!
The Other Guy: The Purple Haze may not be Crash Carver, but he clearly is as dumb as Crash is. Both these guys are idiots, if you ask me. Neither of them are showing any concern for their own physical safety. That’s the Carver family tradition. Act like an idiot, and injure yourself, just as long as you hurt your opponent just as bad!
Both Crash Carver and The Purple Haze roll off the barrier, holding their midsections. It appears that The Other Guy was correct, that both men did hurt themselves executing the suicide leap from the top rope onto The Crimson Riot.
Crash Carver rolls Evan Garcia into the ring, and follows after him. The Purple Haze attempts to do the same with Logan Garcia, but Garcia plants his leg, and stops him. Logan locks his fingers together, and brings both his hands down in double axehandle formation, right on top of the head of The Purple Haze. The Haze goes down hard.
As Crash Carver has Evan Garcia up in the ring with a suplex, on the outside Logan Garcia has scooped The Purple Haze up, and placed the masked wrestler over his shoulder. Logan Garcia charges, and with an earsplitting crack, he powerslams right through the timekeeper’s table! The fans leap to their feet again and start to chant once again, as the bigger member of The Crimson Riot has rammed the body of The Purple Haze forcibly through a table, breaking it into splinters!
The Purple Haze lays in the middle of the wreckage of the broken table, as Logan Garcia grabs the steel chair from the ground, and slides into the ring, brandishing the chair. Crash Carver has suplexed Evan Garcia, and it looks like he is heading towards the corner, maybe to scale the ropes and leap off the top turnbuckle, but he never makes it.
Logan Garcia absolutely wallops Crash Carver right over the top of the head with the folded steel chair. The fans gasp in shock at the sound of the steel chair shot to the head. Crash Carver slumps to the mat, out of it. On the outside, The Purple Haze lays in the middle of the wrecked table. Logan pulls Evan to his feet, and orders him to watch and make sure that neither Crash or The Purple Haze get up.
Eryk Masters: Good lord, what carnage! First Logan slams The Haze through the timekeepers table, and now he has almost split Crash Carver’s skull open with that steel chair!
The Other Guy: What the hell do you mean almost? Look, Crash Carver is busted open from that chair shot, he has blood running down his face from his scalp! Hey, what is Logan doing?
Logan Garcia has opened the steel chair that he just smashed over Crash’s head, and he is standing on the chair, trying to reach the belts hanging on the wire above. Unfortunately for Logan, he actually bent the chair over the head of Crash Carver, so the chair is not supporting his weight, and it is wobbling badly. He cannot reach the belts.
Evan Garcia sees this, and climbs the turnbuckles. Evan slowly scales the steel pole that is holding the Highwire to Hell up, and then he places his feet on the wire and starts to slowly shimmy across the wire. The steel bites into his hands, and you can see him wincing in pain.
Logan Garcia is shouting encouragement to Evan, while outside the ring, Xan has dropped to one knee next to the smashed table, where he is shaking The Purple Haze, trying to wake him up.
Evan Garcia is still sliding, inch by inch across the wire, as flashbulbs pop all over the arena, recording the historic moment, with Evan Garcia almost in place to knock the belts down! The fans are on the edge of their seats, holding their breath.
Evan Garcia falls!
The smaller member of The Crimson Riot is cursing in pain and rubbing his hands. You can see that he is talking to Logan, explaining that he simply could not keep his grip on the wire.
Eryk Masters: Oh man, Evan Garcia is going to have some sore hands and scars to show for this match now! He rubbed his palms raw on that wire, trying to get to those belts.
The Other Guy: I guess Eddie called this match Highwire to Hell for a reason! That wire is so high up there, they can’t reach it, and it looks like it’s impossible to get across!
The fans start to cheer, as The Purple Haze is now back up to his feet, outside the ring! The masked man slowly climbs to the apron, and then scales the turnbuckles, as the fans buzz in excitement! Both Logan and Evan Garcia look ready to deal with him, but after balancing on the top turnbuckle for a brief moment, The Purple Haze leaps HIGH into the air, over the heads of The Crimson Riot, reaching for the Tag Team Title Belts! His fingers touch the hanging belts…
The Purple Haze plummets to the mat, face first. He could not reach the titles. Logan Garcia stomps his feet in anger, and points at The Purple Haze. Evan Garcia nods, and pulls the masked wrestler to his feet, slapping on a sleeper hold! Evan Garcia has The Purple Haze in a sleeper hold, as Logan walks over to the corner.
Crash Carver lays on the mat, next to the crumpled steel chair, motionless. Xan pounds his hands on the apron, exhorting Crash to wake up, but the young Carver is out. The Purple Haze is locked in the sleeper of Evan Garcia.
Logan climbs to the second turnbuckle, and grabs the steel pole which is holding the wire. Instead of climbing, Logan starts to pull as hard as he can. His face goes red, and for a moment, it looks like he is simply pulling for no reason.
Logan Garcia’s face goes from red, to blue. Sweat starts to pour down his face. Slowly, but surely and noticeable, the steel pole starts to bend! The 285 pound Logan Garcia is pulling as hard as he can, using every ounce of his strength, ever fiber in his being, every muscle in his body, straining…pulling and now the pole is definitely starting to bend!
Eryk Masters: This is incredible! This is just unbelievable!
The Other Guy: What a show of strength, and even more, determination by Logan Garcia! Look at this guy! He knows that if Evan couldn’t make it across the wire, there is no way he could. Logan is the biggest guy in this match, and he’s using that to his advantage! He’s the only one of the four guys in this match who has anywhere near the strength to do something like this, although I’m amazed he is bending that pole!
The fans have no choice but to cheer the sight of Logan Garcia bending the steel pole. The more the pole bends, the closer the wire droops to the mat. Finally, the pole is bent to a 90 degree angle, and the wire is now hanging so low that the belts are easily hanging over the ring.
Logan Garcia stops for a moment, rubbing his arms. Evan Garcia releases The Purple Haze, who collapses to the mat, out of it from the sleeper hold. Evan Garcia reaches up and easily pulls down one of the World Tag Team Championship Title Belts.
Logan walks over and reaches for the other one…
In a flash, Crash Carver leaps to his feet, screams in anger, and jumps in front of Logan Garcia, snagging the other belt, and pulling it down! The fans erupt, and if looks could kill, Crash Carver would be a dead man from the glare Logan Garcia gives him.
Now Evan Garcia has one belt, and Crash Carver has the other. The rules clearly state that whichever team ends up with both belts in their possession wins the match, and the titles. Crash Carver clutches the belt to his chest and stumbles out of the reach of Logan Garcia. It is obvious the young high flyer is still dazed and likely concussed from the shot to the head by Logan Garcia, but he is not willing to give up and concede this match.
As Crash Carver holds the belt to his chest, he backs away from Logan Garcia. Logan snatches up the steel chair and folds it up again, brandishing it and grinning with an evil expression on his face. Crash Carver has blood still dripping down his face, but he looks determined not to surrender the belt.
Suddenly, Evan Garcia clocks Crash Carver upside the head with HIS belt, knocking Crash stumbling forward. Crash reels toward Logan, who swings the steel chair with gusto. The chair connects with the temple of Crash Carver with another sickening crack, and the belt flies from his hands…right into the waiting arms of Logan Garcia!
Crash Carver falls to the mat, unconscious, right next to The Purple Haze. The lights go up all over the arena, the sound of Slayer erupts from the sound system, and Samantha Coil takes the microphone into her hand outside the ring…
Samantha Coil: LADIES AND GENTLEMEN…THE WINNERS OF THE HIGHWIRE TO HELL MATCH…AND YOUR NEW SHOOT PROJECT WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS…LOGAN AND EVAN GARCIA…THE CRIMSON RIOT!
Willie Dean holds the free arm of each Garcia in the air, while they hold the tag title belts aloft with the other arm. The crowd jeers loudly and some trash and debris is even hurled at the ring, but The Crimson Riot look quite pleased with themselves.
Suddenly, both men look down at Crash Carver and The Purple Haze, and nod at each other. Evan and Logan Garcia use their new title belts as weapons, and start to smash Crash Carver and The Purple Haze over the head with the belts, over and over again!
Eryk Masters: What the hell? Why are The Crimson Riot doing this? What the hell is wrong with these guys? What else do they want? They won the match! Hell, in their first ever match in SHOOT Project, they won the damn Tag Team Championships! They already beat the hell out of Crash and The Haze, why do this? Show some class!
The Other Guy: Hey, this is what Crash and his little masked friend get for trying to be cute and pull the old switcheroo earlier tonight. I’ve said it all along, Crash Carver thinks he’s funny and clever, but when you try and get cute in SHOOT, you get a beatdown!
The fans are now booing even louder, as The Crimson Riot continue to smash their new belts over the heads of the defenseless Crash Carver and Purple Haze. Xan is looking exceptionally unhappy outside the ring. The Crimson Riot’s music fades, and the bell is rung over and over again, calling for help.
Finally, a herd of security guards and referees rush down the ramp toward the ring. Seeing the crowd, The Crimson Riot stop assaulting Crash Carver and The Purple Haze, but with a sneer on their faces, they hold their now bloody Tag Titles high in the air, and back away. Before they leave the ring, both men spit at Carver and The Haze, and the fan reaction is exceptionally negative.
We see the referees and security staff tending to Crash and his masked partner, while Xan barks orders at them. At the same time, SHOOT Project crew members are already rushing around the ring, replacing the smashed table, and removing the bent steel pole and highwire. A crew member is also cleaning the ring, preparing for the next match. The Crimson Riot slowly swagger up the ramp to the back, their belts hanging over their shoulders, and an expression of satisfaction on their faces.
The scene fades into the back. Jester Smiles is seen wearing jeans and a green shirt with “CrappyTees.com” written in purple. Despite his rather bright choice of clothing, he himself looks anything but. There are dark circles under his eyes, and his beard is looking a touch scruffy.
Jester Smiles: Here I am guys. This is my locker room. I will be here up until the very last match of the night. At the end of the night, I’m going home. That will be that. I won’t be staying around for Azraith and Trey vs King and Corazon. That is, if no one shows up.
If they don’t show up…I don’t know man. I just don’t know.
So, tell me something, SHOOT? Are things bad enough yet? Are you all ready to stand up and fight for something?
Or are you complacent and apathetic enough to just watch this place die again?
I’ll be waiting here for an answer.
Jester grabs a nearby bottle of water and takes a swig as the camera fades out.
The camera cuts to the back where a man in a black overcoat and sunglasses walks in.
???: Where the hell have you been!?
A woman’s voice appears from the side of the camera, causing Lennox to stop in his tracks and remove his glasses.
The Ox: Nice to see you too Sarah.
A flustered Sarah King appears from the left side of the screen.
Sarah King: I’ve been tryinjg to reach you all week… and… what the hell happened to your face?
Lennox touches his swollen cheek and smiles, shaking his head.
Sarah crosses her arms.
The Ox:I mean it. I just… I needed to get some things sorted out. But I’m good now… and I need your support at ringside.
Sarah drops her arms and sighs, just looking at Lennox Ferguson before nodding.
Sarah King:Alright. Let’s just… get you changed. We don’t have a lot of time before your match.
The Ox: Lead the way.
Lennox Ferguson follows Sarah King past the camera and down the Epicenter hallway.
The shot goes to the ring, where we can see Samantha Coil standing in the spotlight.
Samantha: Ladies and Gentlemen, this match is scheduled for one fall and will be fought under Deathkore rules.
Combat by RZA with P Dot starts up over the PA system, as the crowd erupts for the return of the man known as “The Queen City Hitman”.
Samantha: Introducing first, from Hartford Connecticut by the way of his hometown, The Queen City Charlotte , North Carolina…
TMB comes out from behind the curtains wearing Black and White MMA shorts and boots. He tops that off by wearing a Grey North Carolina Tar Heels Hoodie & his forearms and fists taped up. Black hardly looks out from the hoodie as he walks toward the ring. He stops and cracks his knuckles before raising his hands in the air.
Samantha: Weighing in at 265 pounds…
TMB continues to make his way down the ramp way, soaking up the reaction from the crowd that are tossed his way. TMB makes his way up the steel steps and steps over the top rope and doesn’t even look at the ref as he makes his way to the far right corner. He turns around and faces the referee, who proceeds to give him the mandatory pat down.
Samantha: This is THOMAS MANCHESTER BLACK!
Once the ref is finished, TMB takes off his hoodie and tosses it to a ring hand, before slinking down into a sitting position in the corner. Black eyes remain focused as he waits for the match to begin.
Eryk Masters: You wanna talk about two guys that have a very large distaste for each other, look no farther than these two.
Other Guy: Two veterans that represent two different sides of the scale. You have Pestalance who has pretty much built his name in the area of Hardcore. Where TMB has been cutting his nitch in this business using his immense technical wrestling!
Samantha Coil: Introducing his opponent, from Plainfield, New Jersey… at a weight of two hundred fifty five pounds, and standing at six feet, five inches, he is The Firestarter… PESTALANCE!!!
The lights throughout the Epicenter flicker and turn red, and the video wall shows static snow as the synths of "Firestarter" by the Prodigy hit the PA … and Pestalance comes out from behind the curtain to an explosion of boos from the crowd, with only the occasional cheer breaking through the wall of noise. Two pillars of fire ignite either side of him as he stands at the top of the ramp for a second, The former Revolution championship resting on his shoulder shining as he heads to the ring, a cocky smirk on his face.
Other Guy: This match is pretty much, Black’s gateway to King. But to sweeten the pot, TMB is going to also try to take away the Rev. Title from the man who is in the record books as the title’s last champion.
Eryk Masters: I can see what Thomas is trying to do, can you just imagne how pissed off Pestalance would be if he lost in his kind of match to TMB as well as lose the last belt he held in SHOOT Project! But under these rules, I don’t know if it can be done. Like him or night Pestalance is and always has been hardcore!
Other Guy: You say ultimatum, I call it a shakedown. Pestalance and Donovan King seem like unlikely allies, but there’s no denying that a legend of hardcore wrestling like Pest is a dangerous man you’d rather have on your side than against you!
Pest rolls his eyes as referee Dennis Heflin does the usual pat-down, then tosses his sleeveless shirt to a ring attendant.
** Ding, Ding, Ding **
Pestalance glares down Black, as the two start circling the ring. TMB parallels his movement keeping an equally as intimidating of a glare. Pest bursts forward and Black meets him, the two lock up and the adrenaline starts pumping. Pest starts to get the advantage pushing TMB back towards the corner. Before Thomas can do anything, Pestalance throws a knee into the gut of Black, before snapping his head with a vicious closed fist. Rande starts to unload with some of the stiffest closed fists seen during the night as TMB is caught off guard with the quick strikes of Pestalance. Rande pulls back and nails a running clothesline, smashing Black into the corner. Black comes staggering out of the corner and Pestalance places a big boot into the chin of Black. Black goes off his feet and hits the mat hard as Pestalance rolls out of the ring and starts to look under the ring apron. Pest’s eyes light up as he pulls a chair from under the ring and slides back inside with it! TMB is slowly getting to his feet as Pestalance starts to stalk him. TMB is fully up and turns around and almost has his head dented from the first shot to the head. Black stumbles back into the ropes and comes off as Rande fires off another shot. TMB bounces off the ropes again, but this time Pest kicks him in the gut. Quickly Pestalance drops the chair, before dropping TMB face first on it.
Eryk Masters: And this is what TMB has to worry about. If Pestalance gets a big start, it is going to be hard for Thomas to fight back.
Other Guy: You have a point there, fighting back in a normal match is one thing. But trying to fight back a hardcore legend in a hardcore setting is a totally different thing.
TMB is holding his head as Pestalance sits up and looks down at him. Pest face twist with disgust as he pushes TMB over before getting up himself. Black un folds the chair and sets it up in the middle of the ring. Pest walks over to Black and starts to fire boot shot after boot shot before lifting him up and flinging him into the ropes. TMB comes off the ropes fast and Pest looks to slam him into the chair, but Thomas counts with a forearm to the face. TMB quickly hooks Pest up for a suplex. TMB lifts Rande up and spins around before dropping Pestalance back first across the chair. Pest rolls off the chair holding his back as TMB tries to get his senses back to himself. Breathing heavy TMB rolls to his knees as Pestalance rolls over to his hands and knees. TMB quickly gets to his feet before dropkicking the chair right into Pestalance’s face. Black takes a few more breathes before getting back to his feet and pushing the chair out of his way. TMB measures up and drives a knee into the right shoulder of Pestalance. TMB makes sure to drive the knee in a little harder as Rande screams out in pain. Manchester grabs Pestalance’s arm and drops the leg across the shoulder and wrenches back on it. And Deathkore rules means there is no ref to stop TMB from breaking the arm, but Thomas lets go, only to drop another elbow on the shoulder. Thomas grabs the chair and places Pestalance’s arm within the chair and goes to bounce off the ropes. Black goes for a headbutt drop onto the chair and shoulder, but hits only chair as Rande yanks his arm away. That hit ended up being one too many as TMB’s head busts open.
Eryk Masters: And the blood is flowing as Pest was able to pull his arm away at the last second
Other Guy: Pestalance needs to target that forehead and get the blood flowing. I mean you can’t pull off moves with blood blinding your eyes.
Rande sends a knee to tMb;s forehead to get the blood to flow more, as if he heard the announcers. AS TMB is on his knees, trying to wipe the blood out his eyes, Pestalance slams the dented chair onto his back. Pestalance starts to jam the chair edge into TMB’s back as TMB rolls over instinctively to cover up only to receive the same to his ribs and stomach. TMB keeps covering his ribs and midsection as Rande raises the chair one more time, this time aiming to bring it down on TMB’s head. TMB quickly kicks Rande in the mid section before rolling out of the way. Pestalance drops to his knee, saying some things not meant for younger listeners. Black rolls out to the ringside in order to get some space between him and Pestalance and to get the blood out of his eyes. But Pestalance rolls out with him and as TMB turns around he is greeted with a left and right combo that sends him into the guard railing. Pestalance is right on top of him firing off shots nearly bending TMB over into the crowd. Hey maker right is block by TMB who spins Pestalance and wraps him in a MMA like clinch and starts to fire elbows and knees into the Fire Starter. TMB send an elbow that crushes Pestalance’s jaw and sends him flying into the ring post. TMB rams his his forearm into the side of Pestalance’s head, grinding it against the ring post. Black Irish whips Rande off the ring post towards the time keeper’s table. Rande hits hard as TMB jumps up on the steel steps and leaps off! Pest turns swinging the timer keeper’s bell! Black can’t stop in mid air and gets his face bashed in as Rande connects. Black hits the ground and Rande gets a vicious look on his face.
Other Guy: This isn’t the place that TMB wants to be in right now. Not moving and Pestalance with a weapon.
Eryk Masters: If I was Pestalance I would just roll TMB into the ring and pin him right now. I mean after taking that shot, I don’t think TMB is going to put up much of a fight.
Pest reaches under the ring and pulls out a ladder. Pest bridges the ladder between the guard railing and ring apron. TMB’s face is now fully crimson as Pestalance drags him up to his feet. Black’s body is limp as Pest props it on top of the ladder, leaving the front half of his body hanging off the ladder. Pest climbs up on the ring apron and gets a running start, before leaping off the ring apron and nailing a leg drop on TMB, while he is on the ladder. Pest lands on his feet as TMB flips over and hits the ring side floor. Pest is not trying to make any sort of victory attempt here just yet, smirks as another idea pops in his head. Pest reaches again under the ring and pulls out a bunch of light bulb tubes. Pest starts to lay the tubes across the ladder. Slowly Black is beginning to stir. Pest picks up Black with a evil look in his eyes. Pest gets TMB into powerbomb position. Rande goes to lift him but somehow TMB is able to block. With a insane burst of strength and lifts up, sending Pestalance up and over and face first into the light bulb tubes and the steel ladder!! Pest bounces off the ladder, face full of blood as TMB falls against the ring apron, trying to keep himself up. TMB sees two light bulb tubes that weren’t broken on impact. Black grabs them and steps back as Pestalance tries ta get up.
Other Guy: Pestalance is on dream street and TMB is looking to capitalize on it, but he looks a little loopy himself.
Eryk Masters: Black is using that ring apron to keep him up on his feet as he measures up Pest with the two light bulb tubes.
Pest turns to the ladder and does see TMB, and as he turns to look the other is greeted with a light bulb tube shot to the face. Rande stumbles back into the guard railing as Black is now in control. Black fires a few stiff kicks to the midsection of Pest before slamming another elbow into the side of his head. TMB quickly lifts him up and drops him chin first on the railing. Black looks over at the ladder and a grin creeps through his bloody face. TMB grabs the chair from the time keeper and sets it up in front of the ladder. Black drags Pest over to the chair and stand up on it. He leans back and sits on the ladder, leaving Pest’s feet touching the chair. TMB leans back and slaps Pest in a Dragon sleeper using his dangling legs to increase the pain of the hold. You can the air leaving Rande’s lungs as TMB virtually hangs him in the hold. TMB lets go of Rande and he drops to the ring side mat. TMB hops down and grabs the chair. TMB drapes Pest face first against the ladder and takes aim with the chair. TMB plasters Pest across the back with a brutal chairshot, smashing Pest against the steel ladder. TMB starts to unload shot after shot after shot towards Pestalance’s back. TMB slams the chair down as Pest slumps off the ladder. TMB goes and slides the ladder into the ring. Before sliding Pest into the ring as well. TMB sets up the ladder in the corner and places Pestalance on the ladder. TMB get in the opposite corner and measure Rande up. TMB runs at Pest at full speed, but at the last minute Pestalace grabs him by the neck and lift him in the air. With a quick burst of strength Pestalance spins the bigger man around and chokeslams him right into the ladder before falling to the mat.
Eryk Masters: A last second desperation move by the veteran wrestler by Pestalance
Other Guy: Both men are bleeding on the mat and trying to get air as the ref checks on both of them.
Pestalance slowly starts to pull himself up with the ring ropes as TMB is still not moving. Pest slips outside of the ring and climbs the turnbuckle and grabs the ladder in a bulldog position. TMB slowly is getting up to his knees and Pest leaps off with the ladder, crashing it down on TMB’s back. Pestalance gets back to his feet, while TMB lays under the ladder. Rande rolls out of the ring and grabs the chair that was used against him earlier and rolls back into the ring. Rande cocks back and starts slamming the chair against the ladder, crushing TMB! Pest kicks the ladder off TMB and lifts him up. Pest smiles and says something to TMB before driving him into the mat with a DDT. Pest kicks TMB in the head before rolling back outside and under the ring apron. Pest pulls out a trash can filled with various ring tools and throws it into the ring. Rande empties the can in the ring and throws it at Black who was up on his knees. Pest grabs the can and wedges it into the corner. Rande lifts up TMB and fires a few shots to his stomach before going to whip him into the corner with the trash can, but TMB at the last minute reverss and sends Pestalance into the corner. Pest is able to stop before impact though, but as he turns around, TMB spears him right into the trash can!!! Thomas staggers back and wipes the blood off his face. TMB walks over to the pile of tools that Pest has dumped in the ring. Black picks up the wrench and smiles as he walks over to Pest. TMB pushes Pest’s head back so he can get a good view of his already loody forehead.
Other Guy: I think that TMB has snapped and is looking to do some real serious damage to his rival.
Eryk Masters: Real serious damage!?!? Have you not seen the chair, the ladder or the ring bell that was used?
Other Guy: Tools of the match…now it looks like TMB is going to take a more focused route.
TMB slams the wrench into the forehead of Pest, who is now a faucet. The ref goes to say something, but TMB reminds him anything goes. Black pushes the ref back and lifts Pest out of the corner. Black rams the wrench into Rande’s ribs, before using the wrench to lock on a Russian Legsweep that slams Pestalance back into the trash can. TMB tosses the wrench out of the way as he goes to pick Pest up and flings him to the ropes. Pestalance comes off the ropes and Thomas nearly takes his head off with a big boot . Black wipes the blood from his eyes again as he begins to stalk Pestalance. Rande gets back up and is greeted with a hard right from Black. Pest stumbles back a bit, but fires off a left hand with an hard impact. TMB returns the fav by throwing another right. Pest responds in the same fashion. The crowd has jumped to their feet as the two bloody men start to exchange strikes in the middle of the ring. Pest is trying to do the best he can to block the angled strike from the MMA trained Black. Pest decides to even the odds a little bit and kicks black in the thigh causing him to drop down to one knee. TMB quickly rushes in, not wanting to give Pest a chance to capitalize. TMB lifts Rande in the air and drives him to the mat with a powerful slam. The air is driven out of Rande as TMB looks to end it.
Eryk Masters: Looks like TMB has had enough of this and is looking to put an end to the match.
Other Guy: Well it looks like we are about to…hey who is that moving through the crowd?
Eryk Masters: No…no…no…why is he here…why is Kilgore HERE!! We know he and Black have history as well but WHY!!!
Kilgore slides into the ring behind TMB. Kilgore hooks Manchester into a crossface chickenwing…the crowd starts to scream louder, knowing what is about to happen. Stochansky leaps forward while throwing Thomas backwards, dropping Manchester’s head into the mat!! Kilgore smiles at a bloody Pestalance who smiles back. The ref yells at Kilgore to get out of the ring. Kilgore rises his arms saying he didn’t do anything wrong and the ref can’t argue as Pestalance is yelling at him to “Get over here”. Pestalance lifts the limp body of TMB up on his shoulders and looks out into the crowd.
Pestalance: Holla at ya later, bitch!!!
Rande lifts TMB up and over his shoulders and lets him fall straight down. While TMB is falling, Pestalance quickly lifts his knee up, nailing Black in the face. TMB’s head snaps back as he collapses to the mat. Pestalance lazily drops down and makes the cover. The ref moves in drops down for the for the count.
Pestalance gets up and is handed the Revolution Championship. He puts it into Thomas’ face before kicking TMB over and shaking his head. Pest and Kilgore make their way out of the ring and head to the back as EMTs come down to check on Manchester.
Eryk Masters: And that is what King’s group is willing to do. Even a strong guy like TMB is not going to be able to take everyone on by himself. People need to listen to Jester.
Other Guy: Pestalance didn’t have to do that. Kilgore already nailed “None Shall Pass”…Pestalance didn’t need to nail his finisher on top of that. He could of just went for the pin.
Eryk Masters: This is what Eddie, King and the rest plan on doing tonight…they want to send a message to the roster!! Hell to the company!!
Osbourne Kilminster adjusts the waistband of his camo MMA shorts and brushes invisible creases out of his black T-shirt bearing the letters O and K in large, medieval font as Abigail Chase talks into a microphone. Her attention is caught by something off-camera and she suddenly realises she’s on-air, turning to the camera.
Abigail Chase: Welcome to SHOOT Project’s “Under Siege” Pay-Per-View! I’m Abigail Chase and I’m backstage with SHOOT Project Superstar Osbourne Kilminster who’s just minutes away from a match with his own wife! What do you have to say about that?
She turns toward the Englishman, jabbing the microphone just a little too close to his mouth. With just the very tip of his index finger, he pushes it away, maintaining disapproving eye contact with her.
Osbourne Kilminster: Think about what? The Pay-Per-View? My wife? The match? All of the above. Please, be specific. Don’t waste my time.
Abigail Chase: Well, maybe if I start by congratulating you on your wedding not long back –
Osbourne Kilminster: Thank you
Abigail Chase: – and ask how you feel about being forced into a match with her by one of SHOOT Project’s very own Board of Directors, Eddie E?
Rolling his eyes and shaking his head, Osbourne takes a deep breath and narrows his eyes as he regards the interviewer.
Osbourne Kilminster: Well, I’m obviously ecstatic. The thought of wrestling against my wife thrills me. Yeah, what could be better? What a stupid fucking question. It pisses me off that Eddie just waltzes in around here and starts playing God with my life. I couldn’t give a toss if he messed up UK Dragon’s life or Cade Sydal’s life or Jester’s or anybody’s – even yours – but when he shits on my doorstep, it pisses me off.
Abigail Chase: It seems to be that Eddie will do anything to keep Master of the Mat finalist, Sinnocence, away from a potential rubber match with Azraith DeMitri in favour of putting Donovan King into that spot. Why do you think he’s decided to side with King in all of this?
Osbourne Kilminster: I try to stay out of it all, but I heard King thought he was more deserving because of his placement and standing when SHOOT closed the last time, but I think everybody else was of the impression that this was a new start for the company and for everybody in it. I have no idea why the fuck Eddie would side with a bitter and deluded asshole who gets his kicks from intimidating women. Maybe Eddie’s into that too. Maybe that’s the only contact either of them can get with women. What do I know? What do I care? I didn’t care at all until the woman in question happened to be my wife. What goes around comes around, though. I wonder if they’re aware of that? Any of them – King, Eddie, Pesticide…
Abigail Chase: By that, do you mean to imply you’re going to seek some kind of vengeance against them?
Smirking, Osbourne leans in toward the mic and looks right into the camera for the first time.
Osbourne Kilminster: Maybe… Or maybe I won’t have to.
Winking, he turns to walk away, revealing the writing on the back of his T-shirt to be in similar red Medieval-type writing and reading “now it is”.
The SHOOT Project Epicenter’s lights dip into nothingness and allow a quiet darkness to take hold.
Other Guy: Wow, after what we’ve already seen this evening, we’ve got another big match coming up right now.
Eryk Masters: That’s right – a match booked by Eddie in person during our last Revolution and designed to humiliate the newly-married couple of Osbourne Kilminster and Jada Kaine, who’s known to fans as Sinnocence.
Disturbed tears through the PA system as a lone green spotlight at the top of the walkway reveals the first of the two competitors for the upcoming match. Sporting urban camouflage-coloured MMA shorts, black wrestling shoes and similarly-coloured hand-wraps, the shaven-headed Englishman makes his way toward the ring, to a relatively tempered reaction, as David Draiman heralds his coming.
Every broken enemy will know
That their opponent had to be invincible
Take a last look around while you’re alive
I’m an indestructible master of war!
He leaps up onto the apron in a single bound and ducks under the top rope to make his entrance to the ring, immediately being ushered into the corner furthest from the ramp by referee Dennis Heflin as his music cuts out.
Samantha Coil: The following match is scheduled for one fall and will be fought under "Rule of Surrender" stipulations, by which a competitor can ONLY win by forcing their opponent to submit, by choking them unconscious or by forcing the referee to stop the contest due to injury rendering them unable to continue. First to the ring is a former 2-time Rule of Surrender Champion, standing six feet and two inches tall, weighing in at 235lbs and hailing from Birkenhead, England – OSBOURNE KILMINSTER.
A few seconds pass before purple and red spotlights swirl at the top of the ramp in time to the pulsating beat of Rob Zombie’s "Living Dead Girl (Subliminal Seduction Mix)", the shapely and leather-clad form of the SHOOT Project superstar who came second only to Azraith DeMitri in the 2010 Master of the Mast tournament. A panning crowd shot reveals a large number of males of all ages paying close attention to this particular superstar as she laps up a very positive reaction en route to the ring.
Crawl on me
Sink into me
Die for me
LIVING DEAD GIRL
Blood on her skin
Dripping with sin
Do it again
LIVING DEAD GIRL
Seemingly aware of the exact position of every camera in the building, Sinnocence reaches up for the second rope and pulls herself up onto the apron, pausing to adjust the laced back of her bikini-style leather top before ducking under the top rope and entering the ring. Dennis Heflin ushers her to a corner opposite from Kilminster as the music cuts and the lights brighten up, slowly returning to normal and affording all in attendance their first glimpse of husband and wife stood across the ring from one another.
Samantha Coil: And the second competitor has entered the ring, having twice held the prestigious Revolution Championship, she stands five feet and nine inches, weighs in at 171lbs and hails from Las Vegas, Nevada – The Killer Queen herself – SINNOCENCE."
Other Guy: You hear that pop right there for the homegirl?
Eryk Masters: Well, she’s originally from Austin in Texas but has been living in and running businesses in Las Vegas for a long, long time.
Other Guy: Still, it’s closer than Birkenhead, England, and the crowd here seem to favour their adopted homegirl. How do you think this is going to go?
Eryk Masters: Hard to say. Both are highly decorated SHOOT Project soldiers, but Osbourne’s got that Rule of Surrender experience. It was guys like him and Chris Lee and, briefly, OutKast, who made the Rule of Surrender Championship one of the most sought after in the whole industry – not just this company.
Other Guy: Good point, but that girl’s quick. I hear shit from time to time and she’s lightning quick. Plus, you gotta take into account she knows all Oz’s moves. Plus, arguably, both of these two went up against our current World Champion and Sinnocence came away with less injuries than Osbourne. If you remember, he was out of action for some time after his encounter with Azraith. I think Sinnocence is more durable.
Eryk Masters: Only one way to find out! Here we go!
The bells is rung and a hushed anticipation hangs heavy in the stands as Osbourne and Sinnocence leaves their corners to approach the middle of the ring. The two wrap their arms around eachother tightly, inaudible words spoken between them before they part, Osbourne looking right into one of the cameras and sticking two middle fingers up at it.
Osbourne Kilminster: Fuck you, Eddie. Fuck you!
Eryk Masters: Wow! That won’t go down well with the top office!
Other Guy: I get the impression he might not give a shit about that…
The two approach eachother again, Osbourne’s fingers twitching nervously as he holds up a loose guard. He lunges forward as though reaching for a Thai clinch, but the speedy Sinnocence launches a MASSIVE roundhouse kick straight into his prone ribs! Kilminster staggers, bouncing back off the ropes to be met with a Capoiera-style sweep kick that drops him to the mat! Sinnocence pounces on him, taking a mount position, but the much stronger and more experienced Kilminster isolates her left arm and ties up her left leg to roll her, finding himself kneeling in her guard!
Eryk Masters: I told you she’s quick!
Other Guy: No doubt she’s bust out her A-game for this, but being stuck under Osbourne in this context can’t be good news.
Eryk Masters: In this context as opposed to-
Other Guy: You know what I mean!
Osbourne works to hold onto the left arm, still isolated from the switch. Out of nowhere, Sinnocence swings her hips and throws her legs up – once across Osbourne’s throat and one across his chest as she torques his right arm with a straight arm-bar! She forces him onto his back as he clasps his hands tightly together, struggling against her but successfully turning in toward her and switching back up onto his knees. Instead of accepting his escape, Sinnocence adjusts her hips and reconfigures her legs to slap on a tight triangle choke!
The crowd gasp as Osbourne’s face instantly begins darkening to a deep purple hue, long seconds passing as he painstakingly works from his knees and onto his feet in a squatted position. Sinnocence’s eyes bulge as Osbourne calls forth all his worldly strength to raise her high from the canvas and SMASH her back down onto it with a powerbomb-like maneouvre which forces her to relinquish her hold and allows him to stagger backward and suck in huge lungs full of air.
Eryk Masters: Oooooooh! Has to hurt!
Other Guy: I am so fuckin’ impressed with Sinn’s submissions!
Eryk Masters: Who isn’t? I mean, wow… but that slam’s going to take something out of her…
Without missing a beat, Sinnocence rolls backward and up to her feet, charging at Kilminster with a double-leg takedown attempt which he stuffs easily with a textbook sprawl, pinning her face-down on the canvas as he spins to try and lock in a rear-mount, but the educated Killer Queen keeps her chin tucked, elbows and knees to her ribs so he can’t gain any purchase to get his hooks in. Frustrated, Osbourne steps back and allows her to her feet.
There’s sporadic claps of approval from the crowd, drawing a faint smirk from the Englishman which is then mirrored by his wife before they begin circling again.
Other Guy: Ain’t many guys gonna get Osbourne down with standard takedowns like that, never mind a sub-200lb woman.
Eryk Masters: Stranger things have happened in this very ring.
Osbourne raises his guard cautiously as he approaches Sinnocence, successfully blocking a succession of kicks aimed at his ribs and legs before throwing one of his own – a right roundhouse which sends his shin colliding with his wife’s floating ribs and almost lifts her off the ground as she recoils from it. He loads up and swings his left in a similar motion, but Sinnocence uses both forearms to block it and grabs his leg, tucking in and driving forward with a single-leg takedown attempt! He hops back on his free foot, angling his captured leg between hers for balance as he tries to avoid being taken down, driving HAMMERS of punches into her kidney region until she gives it up and steps back, wincing a little.
Eryk Masters: Brutal, yet effective. He got out of a tricky spot right there.
Other Guy: I’ve spoken to guys who competed against Kilminster back in the day when he was Iron Fist Champion for a while and his punches HURT, apparently. I dunno how the fuck Sinn is still standing!
Bobbing and weaving as he approaches his seemingly pained wife, he drops for a double-leg takedown of his own, but she sprawls in picture-perfect fashion and INSTANTLY takes Osbourne’s back with hooks in and locks on a TIGHT rear naked choke! The crowd scream their approval as Sinnocence grinds her forearm hard across Osbourne’s throat!
Eryk Masters: This could be it! That’s the second choke she’s caught him in – first the triangle and then this rear naked… This really could be all she wrote.
Other Guy: I dig the gender reference there, but Sinnocence ain’t Angela Lansbury…
Eryk Masters: That’s "Murder, She Wrote", you idiot!
Other Guy: Ooooooooh.
Osbourne slowly pushes himself up to his feet, hunched over as he reaches up to try and work Sinn’s upward arm loose, but she’s tucked it tidily behind his head, just as he would have done if he were in her position. Struggling to do so, he stands upright and casts his eyes upward as though asking his Gods for mercy before he powerfully throws himself backward to the canvas with Sinnocence still clinging to him!
No sooner do they hit the canvas with ring-shuddering force than Osbourne gently tries to break the hold once more, finding much more success as his wife’s power has been drained by the force of the impact. Turning in toward her, he breaks her legs apart to pass from her guard to a side-control position. Just as she seems to be regaining her senses, his python-like arms secure her arm and neck in a tight arm-triangle choke! She tries to turn into him to pull guard once more but can’t get her knee under him as his hips flatten to the canvas, his grip tightening and tightening…
Other Guy: That’s locked in TIGHT!
Eryk Masters: Sure looks that way from here…
Dennis Heflin moves in to check on Sinnocence and raises her arm. It flops down lifelessly.
Eryk Masters: Not good!
Again, Heflin raises her arm and, again, it flops down lifelessly.
Other Guy: Definitely not good for Sinnocence right now…
A third time seals it as Heflin determines her to be unconscious and waves his arms to draw an end to the contest.
Samantha Coil: At a time of 10 minutes and 26 seconds, your winner by arm triangle choke – OSBOURNE KILMINSTER!
Eryk Masters: Well, there you have it! A big feather in Osbourne’s cap to say he managed to defeat one of the most highly ranked superstars here, regardless of the fact that it’s his wife and that he was, ultimately, reluctant to even compete.
Other Guy: No doubting that, man. An arm triangle is one of those things that when it’s on, it’s on and we saw Sinnocence refuse to tap out, even to her own husband. The girl just doesn’t give up. Never has and never will!
Helping his wife to come to her senses and then to her feet, Kilminster leads her out of the ring and back along the ramp to the back as Disturbed blasts through the arena to reinforce his victory to everybody.
We go backstage, and are taken to what appears to be the medical triage area. Crash Carver is being tended to by an EMT, who is holding an icepack to his head. We can see a large plaster bandage on his temple. There is no sign of Xan, or The Purple Haze.
Seeing the camera, Crash shoves the medic aside, and points into the camera.
Crash Carver: I’m gonna make this short, and sweet. Evan! Logan! Crimson Riot! Congratulations, boys. You officially won the battle. You walked into SHOOT Project, and won the World Tag Team Championships in your first fucking match.
But let me tell you something, right here, right now. If you think that you’re going to just keep those belts, and never defend them? If you think that because on paper, SHOOT doesn’t have a Tag Team division, that you’re going to lay around collecting a champion’s paycheck without having to do jack shit to earn it?
Yeah, I want to be World Heavyweight Champion. Yeah, I’d love to win The Iron Fist belt, or even get a shot at the Sin City Championship, but that does NOT mean that I am not in this team with The Purple Haze for the long haul. No one shot deal here, boys.
Crash Carver and The Purple Haze might be great singles wrestlers, and we’ll take whatever chances we get for singles glory, but as far as you two assholes are concerned?
WE ARE A TEAM.
Crash Carver and The Purple Haze. We’ll fight Corazon and King. We’ll fight Pestalance and Stochinsky. We’ll fight Ozzy and Sinn. We’ll fight any other two wrestlers, any time.
We will fight you, Crimson Riot. This is NOT over. FUCK NO. You’ve heard the old saying? Well on the Crash Pad, you fired the first shot. Then tonight, you won the battle.
You have NOT won the war. We want a rematch. A good old fashioned, normal Tag Team match. No wires, no tricks, no gimmicks. Just both of you, and both of us, and the titles on the line.
This is NOT over. Crash Carver and The Purple Haze. Now you know, we are two separate men, and we are a team. We want The Crimson Riot, we want those titles, and we want REVENGE.
And we WILL have it.
Backstage four men in black suits with sunglasses are seen guarding a locker room door. The four men stand rigid until the door begins to open and Mr. Heart appears from behind it. Heart, dressed ready to fight, takes note of his Associates and nods, instructing them to walk. Heart walks first but does not get very far before he walks into the newest SHOOT Soldier, Alex Brooks.
Alex Brooks: “Sorry sir.”
Heart brushes himself down and stares at the smaller man.
Mr. Heart: Will you please watch where you are going young man. I have a very important match ahead of me the last thing I need is some cleaner bumping into me. I take it you have come to tidy up my room and refill my drinks cabinet whilst I am out winning the Sin City Championship…"
Alex Brooks: Sorry Sir. I didn’t mean to bump into you. But I’m not the cleaner, I’m Alex Brooks. I was just looking for my locker room.
Nothing is said for three or four seconds as Mr. Heart stands unimpressed with the man in front of him.
Alex Brooks: Oh you’re Mr. Heart! Good luck tonight.
Brooks goes to walk past Mr. Heart and his Associates. Heart turns and stops the young man.
Mr. Heart: My dear boy… Are you new to SHOOT Project?
Alex Brooks: Yeh… I am sorta. See, I used to be on this show called Wrestling Spirit. It was me and Mr Jer… I mean Jerry. They were making a documentary about us and how we were gonna become champions. They said it was going to be the Contender for Professional Wrestling. But, when SHOOT Project closed in 2009, they cancelled the show. And we came back with this guy called Troy Tornado who was basically doing the same thing but on the Internet but he stopped turning up to stuff and I stopped turning up to stuff and I almost lost my job but I got on my knees and begged to keep my job and they said I could but I had to make a continued and diligent effort to become a valuable SHOOT Project Soldier. So, I’m new here. But not that new.
Heart feigns a yawn.
Mr. Heart: I have never heard such drivel in all my life. Listen to me kid, watch my wrestling match… Watch how I become the Sin City Champion… That will show you what they mean by a continued and diligent effort… Perhaps you could learn something from me.
Mr. Heart points towards his locker room door.
Mr. Heart: Watch over the room. Drink what you want, eat what you want… Oh… But please… Make sure the carpet gets a good scrub and the window needs a good buffing.
Brooks looks at him sideways
Alex Brooks: Are you being rude? If you are that’s not very nice.
Heart begins to walk away, his Associates in pursuit.
Mr. Heart: Heaven forbid… I’m not being rude… I’m being Mr. Heart…
Alex yells after Mr. Heart who continues to walk away.
Alex Brooks: So can I watch TV in your room, or not?
Heart continues his walk, ignoring the new Soldier. Brooks, with a grin on his face, pushes open the door to Heart’s private locker room and walks in.
Eryk Masters: Alright, ladies and gentlemen. Alex Brooks annoying Mr. Heart a little bit before his Sin City Championship shot, which just so happens to be kicking off, right now!
“Thunderstruck” by AC/DC hits the PA system, as the crowd comes alive for the UK Dragon, who runs out from behind the curtain, and all the way down the ramp, slapping hands with the fans along the way!
Other Guy: UK Dragon with a lot of energy out here, Eryk.
Eryk Masters: Definitely, and he’s going to need it, looking at the three other men in this contest. Dragon’s going to be at a serious size disadvantage to everyone. At the smallest, he’s 4 inches shorter, and 40 pounds lighter than everyone else.
Dragon slides into the ring, and immediately goes to the turnbuckle, raising his arms, and getting a nice sized pop!
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, from the United Kingdom… he stands at five feet, ten inches and weighs in at one hundred eighty-five pounds… he is the UK DRAGON!!!
Dragon raises his arms one more time, as “Thunderstruck” fades away. It’s immediately replaced by “The Almight Dollar” by Ozzy Osbourne, and the arena is effaced with a loud series of boos, welcoming the one, the only, Mr. Heart. Heart casually struts to the top of the ramp, and begins a slower walk down the ramp. He chooses to ignore any fans along the way.
Other Guy: He looks focused, yet somewhat brazen.
Eryk Masters: That’s his M.O., OG.
Other Guy: Your M.O. must be a lot of initials.
Eryk Masters: Don’t test my gangster, son.
Mr. Heart climbs into the ring, as Samantha Coil returns to the center.
Samantha Coil: Introducing second… hailing from London, England… he stands at six feet, two inches tall, and he weighs in at two hundred twenty-five pounds… he is MR. HEART!
Eryk Masters: Why do you suppose that Mr. Heart actually knows where he’s from, but UK Dragon just lists himself as being from the United Kingdom?
Other Guy: Maybe he failed geography.
Eryk Masters: Do they even call it geography in Europe?
Other Guy: Nah, they probably call it geougraphy or something.
Eryk Masters: You added a “u” there, didn’t you?
The crowd offers up a somewhat mixed reaction, as “Nightmare” by Avenged Sevenfold takes over the PA system. A light with a purple hue emits over the arena, as the crowd boos, now realizing who’s coming out. Magnus appears at the top of the arena, no entrance attire, only his ring gear. He looks as focused as ever, as he begins a walk to the ring.
Other Guy: This guy… he’s got some serious talent, and did you see the new logo that marketing worked up for him? Dead sexy.
Eryk Masters: How much were you paid to plug the logo?
Other Guy: I’m compensated on a satisfactory level, Eryk. I’m sorry you’re offended.
Eryk Masters: Is that a Magnus Munitions t-shirt, too?
Other Guy: Audience, you know what they say… haters gon’ hate.
Magnus makes it to the ring, and climbs from the steps. He makes his way in, as Samantha Coil takes the center for the third time, announcing his arrival.
Samantha Coil: Introducing third… standing in at six feet, five inches tall… weighing in at two hundred sixty-five pounds… HE IS THE WALKING NIGHTMARE… MAGNUS!!
Magnus nods towards Samantha Coil, as “Nightmare” by Avenged Sevenfold fades away. The crowd gets a little rowdy, and explode into a raucous pop as “Kira” by MONORAL takes over the PA! Jaime Alejandro runs out from the back, with the Sin City Championship over his shoulder! The crowd goes nuts!
Eryk Masters: Jaime Alejandro looks as ready to go as ever, here.
Other Guy: Gold looks okay on that dude, but I suspect it’d look better around the waist of Charles. Brandon. Magnus.
Eryk Masters: Seriously? Still?
Other Guy: …Charles. Brandon. Magnus.
Eryk Masters: At any rate, Alejandro makes his way to the ring, to the delight of our fans. He’s been a very solid Sin City Champion, and has answered every challenge with grace and respect to the business, and to the belt.
Samantha Coil: And finally… introducing last… hailing from San Antonio, Texas… he stands in at six feet, four inches tall… he weighs in at two hundred, thirty five pounds… HE IS THE REIGNING SIN CITY CHAMPION… THE SAINT… JAIME ALEJANDRO!!!
Alejandro steps into the ring, taking his belt off as he does so. He hands it over to Willie Dean, who motions for the cord to descend from the scaffolding.
Eryk Masters: It’s going to hover over them all match long, OG. It’s a reminder to how hard they’ve all worked to keep it or to take it.
The belt slowly ascends as the camera looks at each of their faces as they watch it go higher and higher. Alejandro seems focused. The Dragon seems in awe. Heart seems obnoxiously arrogant. Magnus grins ear to ear, ready.
Other Guy: I hope you’re ready for some Laws of Survival, Eryk!
The bell rings and the fans are instantly at their feet. They know what is at stake here. Jamie Alejandro stands in one corner. Opposite him is Charles Brandon Magnus. The third corner has The UK Dragon stretching against the ropes. The fourth? Naturally, Mr. Heart is standing there, privately consulting with two of his affiliates. The referee, Willie Dean, walks over to Heart and motions to the associates, pointing to the back! The fans are popping as Dean has banned Heart’s associates from ringside!
Eryk Masters: Look at that! Wilie Dean is taking charge here tonight, OG!
Other Guy: Well, he should, E! Heart’s got some tricks up his sleeve, but don’t think for one second he’s down for the count!
The associates slowly leave, arguing with Dean as they do so. Suddenly, from behind, Heart is attacked by The UK Dragon! Dragon quickly grabs a hold of Heart’s head and goes for a Broken Heart Neckbreaker, but Heart quickly hooks his leg into the ropes and Dragon lets go…RIGHT into a Magnus spear! Magnus pops up, glaring down at his prey as he gets caught from behind immediately!
Other Guy: Aw hell! Magnus is gonna go for a ride!
Heart quickly slides to the outside of the ring as Magnus is sent FLYING with a German Suplex! He keeps the hold on and quickly reverts to the double chickenwing…TIGER SUPLEX! Magnus’s head hits the mat HARD as The Saint slowly picks Magnus back up, hooking in a half nelson and chickenwing…KING BUSTER!
Eryk Masters: My God, I think Alejandro’s going for the Hydra-Plex!
Other Guy: The what?
Eryk Masters: FIVE suplexes!
Alejandro slowly pulls Magnus back up to his feet…Magnus hooks his leg around Alejandro’s! Alejandro goes for the suplex yet again, but Magnus stops him! Alejandro with a shot to the back, full nelson…DRAGON SUPLEX!! Alejandro, wasting no time, pulls Magnus up quickly, wraps his arms up…X-PLEX.
Eryk Masters: HYDRA-PLEX! My GOD!
Magnus holds his head and stomach, showing that he’s both hurt and somewhat nauseous. Alejandro looms over his prey and smirks. Alejandro, however, turns and quickly hits Dragon in the midsection with a back kick, doubling the smaller Soldier over. He quickly hooks Dragon’s head and hoists him up…PILEDRIVER. Dragon’s head is DRIVEN into the mat as Alejandro nods his head, having taken total control of the match. Heart slowly slinks into the ring and picks Magnus up, but the fans POP when Alejandro’s head snaps to the side, spotting him! Heart drops Magnus to the mat and slides from the ring quickly, waving Alejandro off!
Other Guy: I think Mr. Heart’s had just about enough of Alejandro constantly kicking his ass, E.
Alejandro slowly marches over to Magnus and picks him up as Mr. Heart looks to be walking away from the match!
Eryk Masters: What’s he doing?!
Suddenly, Heart’s associates appear at the entrance ramp, one of them rolling out a gorgeous leather chair. Heart slinks down into the cushions, smirking as one of the associates gives him a bottle of Fiji water!
Other Guy: I think he’s taking a break. Hiding can take a lot out of a guy, Eryk.
Alejandro picks Magnus up and…Magnus counters with a jawbreaker! Alejandro cradles his face as Magnus is up to one knee, glaring down at the Sin City Champion. He looks above his head to see the Sin City Championship, hooked up and dangling precariously from the scaffolding of the arena. Magnus looks back to Mr. Heart and notices he does not see Dragon. He looks at Alejandro, who is slowly picking himself off of the mat. Magnus turns around…RIGHT INTO A UK DRAGON CROSSBODY! The fans pop as Dragon rolls off of Magnus and demands Magnus get right back up. Once Magnus is up, Dragon kicks him in the leg over and over and over and then…spinning heel kick to the chest!
Other Guy: That looked less like The UK Dragon and more like The Ultimo Dragon!
Dragon screams to the fans as he picks Alejandro up and whips the bigger Champion to the ropes, but Alejandro counters and whips Dragon to the ropes. Alejandro goes for a hip toss, but Dragon flips over onto his feet and his back is to Alejandro! Alejandro rushes at him to hit the Imperial Lung Blower…MAGNUS IS THERE. Magnus QUICKLY NAILS a Dragon suplex of his own! He rolls Alejandro and picks him back up…ANOTHER Dragon suplex! He keeps the full nelson on…A THIRD DRAGON SUPLEX. He KEEPS the full nelson on…stands Alejandro up, hooks his leg around Alejandro’s and DRIVES Alejandro’s head into the mat!
Eryk Masters: Three Dragon suplexes into the Skull Crushing Finale! SICK!
Alejandro is down on the mat as Magnus turns to see Dragon hit him in the face with a solid flying elbow! Magnus staggers back against the ropes and Dragon immediately kicks him in the midsection, doubling him over. Dragon hooks both of Magnus’s arms!
Eryk Masters: He’s going for the Scorched Earth!
Dragon cries out, trying to lift Magnus off of the ground, but to no avail! The fans are loving it as he calls out for them to give him some of their strength! He tries to pick Magnus up again, but Magnus is firmly planted on the mat! Suddenly, Alejandro is up! He walks over to Magnus’s feet…and he picks them up for Dragon! The fans are popping BIG as Magnus looks to be helpless!
Other Guy: This looks like it could be it for Magnus!
Alejandro nods at Dragon, but Magnus kicks Alejandro away and quickly powers Dragon up…SPINEBUSTER TO THE MAT. Dragon’s head thumped off of the mat with authority as Magnus stands there, holding the back of his neck. He picks Dragon up and puts him in the corner and lifts him up to the sit on the top turnbuckle. Suddenly, Magnus gets grabbed from behind by Alejandro and Alejandro hooks Magnus’s head, he looks to be trying for some sort of inverted DDT!
Other Guy: God, I’d give anything to work a match like Mr. Heart does…
Heart, meanwhile, is still sitting at the top of the entrance ramp, cheering everyone on while drinking his Fiji water. Magnus, meanwhile, manages to overpower Alejandro and throw him to the mat! Dragon slides off of the top turnbuckle, trying to come to his senses. Alejandro locks up with Magnus, and Dragon spots the two of them going at it! Alejandro ducks under and locks Magnus in at his waist and Dragon kicks Magnus in the midsection, prompting Alejandro to let him go. Dragon hooks his leg over the top of Magnus’s head…OVERDRIVE! With Magnus down on the mat, Dragon IMMEDIATELY hooks the leg around Magnus’s free arm, then quickly snatches Magnus into a CHIKARA Special! The fans pop as Dragon sinks the hold in!
Eryk Masters: Not to say it’s not sound strategy, because it kind of is…but why is Dragon locking in a submission move when he needs to be hitting somebody’s finisher?
Other Guy: Maybe he thinks it’s Magnus’s finisher?
Eryk Masters: He wouldn’t…would he?
Willie Dean slaps Dragon on the back and he releases the hold, his arms up in excitement. Dean turns him around and reveals to him that he has not, in fact, eliminated Charles Brandon Magnus as he suspected. Frustrated, Dragon goes to pick Magnus up, but Alejandro immediately slaps Dragon HARD in the face! The two men look at one another, Magnus between them on the mat in agony. Slowly, Alejandro takes a step back, and Dragon steps over Magnus. The two of them tie up, Alejandro ducks under and hooks Dragon up from behind, but Magnus reaches over and trips Alejandro up! Alejandro tries to regain his balance…but Dragon is ready! He sets Alejandro up…STANDING CORKSCREW ELBOW from the UK Dragon! It connects Alejandro’s head and the referee calls for the bell!
Other Guy: Wait! What just happened?!
Samantha Coil: LADIES AND GENTLEMEN…JAIME ALEJANDRO…HAS BEEN ELIMINATED!!
The fans…ERUPT in shock.
Eryk Masters: WHAT?!
Other Guy: Dude, Jaime Alejandro has THREE finishers. One’s a power move, one’s a submission…and ONE is a CORKSCREW ELBOW.
Eryk Masters: But…wait! Isn’t his done on the mat? Alejandro was standing up!
Other Guy: Sorry, but there’s variations on that move of his, and Willie Dean there just announced that The UK Dragon has ELIMINATED The Saint!
Alejandro looks up to Dragon, who is both elated and stunned at what he has just done. Magnus crawls from the ring and begins to rest on the outside. Dragon reaches down to help Alejandro up, but Alejandro refuses the help, pulling himself up. He looks at Dragon and shakes his head. He looks over to Willie Dean, debating on if he’s going to argue the point, and he drops to his back, rolling from the ring.
Other Guy: Eryk! No matter what, we’re gonna have a NEW Champion tonight!
Alejandro walks up the ramp, hands on his hips, shaking his head. He turns back to the ring for just a moment to see Dragon staring at him. The fans are stirring as Magnus is looking underneath the ring, where he seems to be producing something that’s getting the fans anxious. The camera stays on Alejandro as he walks past Mr. Heart, who is waving Alejandro off. Alejandro stops, glaring at Heart. Heart shrugs and takes another swig of his water, only for Alejandro to RAM his boot into Heart’s face! The fans POP as Heart is almost completely thrown from the chair to the floor. Alejandro picks Heart up, but the associates swarm him!
Eryk Masters: Alejandro’s taking his frustrations out on Heart!
Other Guy: You lost, Saint! Go home!
Alejandro shoves the associates off of him. He slaps one down to the ground and then leaves the ringside area. Heart holds his chin, annoyed. His associates surround him, trying to look out for him. Meanwhile, Dragon slowly turns around, his head down from watching Alejandro. However, the camera zooms out…and Charles Brandon Magnus is ready…WITH A TABLE WEDGED IN A CORNER. Magnus quickly hooks Dragon up…BELLY TO BELLY…STRAIGHT THROUGH THE TABLE.
Eryk Masters: Good Lord! Magnus is NOT playing around with the Falls Count Anywhere stipulation!
Magnus quickly tosses Dragon from the ring and jumps out after him. He picks Dragon up, ramming him into the guardrail so hard the entire barricade shifts. Dragon clutches his back as Magnus lords over Dragon. Heart stands up, furious at Alejandro ruining his comfortable spot. He storms down to the ring as Magnus clotheslines Dragon over the guardrail to the audience outside the guardrail. Heart stops when he sees Magnus and Dragon fighting on the outside. He smirks as he sees Magnus picking Dragon up and he walks over to the ropes and steps out himself.
Other Guy: I think Heart is coming over this way…
Mr. Heart picks up a spare headset.
Mr. Heart: What’s the good word, gents?
Eryk Masters: What are you doing here?
Mr. Heart: I’m enjoying a grand spectacle that Under Siege is! Have you seen the matches so far?
Other Guy: Sure have!
Mr. Heart: Charles Brandon Magnus and The UK Dragon have done so well in this contest, I must say. Kudos to both men.
Eryk Masters: Why aren’t you getting involved?
Mr. Heart: …would you?
Suddenly, Magnus slowly turns around and locks eyes on Heart.
Mr. Heart: One moment, gentlemen.
Heart throws down the head set as Magnus leaps over the guardrail, staring him down. The fans are actually cheering for Magnus as he points to Heart and beckons for him to come and face him. Heart continues to back away until Magnus gets swarmed by Heart’s associates! The fans boo as Magnus takes shots at each of them, trying to stop their attempts to come at Heart. Meanwhile, outside, Dragon has disappeared from where he was laying. Heart puts his hands on his hips as Magnus gets held by the associates, one pulling his hair up to look at Heart as he mocks Magnus.
Eryk Masters: I don’t know if that’s wise, Heart.
Heart slowly walks towards Magnus, until suddenly the fans pop! The UK Dragon has jumped over to the guard rail behind Heart!
Other Guy: I think Heart might want to turn around…
Eryk Masters: Shh!
Heart stands there for a long moment until Dragon grabs him by the back of his head! The fans are cheering…IMPERIAL LUNG BLOWER!! The fans POP as Dragon IMMEDIATELY covers Heart on the outside of the ring and Willie Dean slides out to count the pinfall attempt!
The Associates pull Dragon off of Heart, while one of them goes to take care of Mr. Heart! Dragon, still in pain from the table suplex, is easily overwhelmed by the numbers, but MAGNUS is there! Magnus hits one of the associates with an elbow strike while Dragon shoves one of the associates back, just in time for Magnus to NAIL him with a spinebuster! Magnus picks Dragon up and Dragon whips Magnus at the last two associates, but Magnus counters and Dragon NAILS both of them with a double clothesline! The fans are LOVING it as Dragon slaps his chest in defiance! He turns around to see Magnus…SPINEBUSTER! Magnus goes for the pin attempt!
Heart kicks Magnus in the back of his head, breaking up the pin! Associates are everywhere as Heart walks over to Mark Kendrick, ordering him to get up. He takes Mark Kendrick’s chair and folds it up. He marches towards Magnus and Dragon. He stands over Dragon and FIERCELY brings the chair down on Dragon’s chest. He slides the chair into the ring and picks Magnus up as well. He rolls Magnus into the ring but Magnus is right back up! Heart slides into the ring and Magnus quickly hits him with a kneedrop! Heart covers his head in pain as Magnus picks him back up and looks over to the chair. He throws Heart into the corner and looks back over to the chair. He slowly walks over to the chair and stands over it for a moment. He looks back to Heart and he bends down, picking the chair up. The fans in attendance are cheering as he slowly unfolds it and SLAMS it down onto the mat.
Eryk Masters: It looks to me like Charles Brandon Magnus is, without question, about to fuck Heart up with that chair.
He walks over to Heart and looks to whip Heart at the chair…but Heart counters! He spins Magnus around, waistlock…GERMAN SUPLEX ONTO THE OPENED CHAIR!!! MAGNUS IS OUT!!
Other Guy: GOOD GOD!
Magnus cradles the back of his head as Heart slowly picks Magnus back up…and nails a SECOND German suplex! Heart shakes his head, laughing as he does so…and slowly picks Magnus back up one final time…AND SLAMS MAGNUS DOWN ONTO THE CHAIR FOR A THIRD SUPLEX. Heart is sitting up next to Magnus’s body now, looking down at his opponent. Willie Dean has cleared up the carnage at ringside, only for Heart to slowly back away from Magnus. He slides away from Magnus and leaves the ring. The fans are confused as they see Heart back away, his associates crowding around him. Slowly, Dragon slides into the ring and crawls over to Magnus. He looks at Magnus for a few moments and drapes his arm over the fallen Magnus. Willie Dean slides into the ring to count the pin!
Other Guy: Magnus KICKED. OUT.
Eryk Masters: I can NOT believe it, man!
Heart looks positively stunned as Magnus rolls to his side. He looks at Heart through his hazy eyes and slowly extends…his middle finger. The fans POP as Heart gets incensed. He marches back to the ring, but the associates stop him from doing so. He points at Magnus, who is still clutching his head. Dragon begins to pull himself up, his knees wobbling underneath him as he does so. Magnus, however, is on his stomach, trying desperately to get to his own hands and knees. Dragon glares at Magnus and motions for him to get the rest of the way up. Magnus picks himself up and Dragon rushes at him…he goes for the Imperial Lung Blower…BUT MAGNUS KEEPS HIM UP! Magnus has POWERED himself to a standing position, Dragon clutching him for his finisher…MAGNUS SPINS HIM AROUND AND SLAMS HIM DOWN! Dragon is up, in pain…Magnus takes a hold of him…SCORCHED EARTH!!! MAGNUS NAILS THE SCORCHED EARTH!!!
Eryk Masters: MY GOD! Magnus has PLANTED Dragon!
Magnus gets back up, powering through the obvious pain he’s experiencing in his head and picks Dragon up again…he looks for the chair…hooks Dragon up…SCORCHED EARTH ONTO THE CHAIR!!! Magnus holds his backside as he rolls Dragon over and Willie Dean is there!
Eryk Masters: AND WE ARE DOWN TO TWO!!!
Samantha Coil: Ladies and gentlemen…THE UK DRAGON…HAS BEEN ELIMINATED!!!
Heart storms the ring and quickly kicks Dragon away, and he begins to wail on Magnus! Two of the associates rush to the ring and quickly find a ladder underneath the ring!
Other Guy: Mr. Heart is wasting NO time!
Eryk Masters: Magnus HAS to be exhausted!
Heart quickly picks Magnus up…BROKEN HEART NECKBREAKER! Heart sits up next to Magnus’ fallen body and demands the ladder be slid into the ring! Two of the associates quickly try to set the ladder up, but Willie Dean is arguing with them!
Other Guy: He couldn’t do much before…what’s it matter what he can do to them now?!
One of the associates finally has enough and FACEPALMS Willie Dean to the mat! Heart looks at the ladder as one of the associates holds it up for him, keeping it steady, and he begins his ascent! Willie Dean is back up and shoves the associate who pushed him down, the fans ERUPTING for Willie Dean! Dean begins to get into the scuffle with the associates, but Heart is halfway up the ladder! Magnus is slowly coming to and the fourth associate begins to try to hold Magnus down. Magnus, however, manages to poke the associate in the face as Heart is up to the third from last rung, and within fingertip reach of the Sin City Championship! Heart looks down as Magnus is getting up to his feet and orders the associate holding the ladder to get Magnus!
Eryk Masters: Magnus has really come into his own tonight, OG, he’s out here in a what amounts to a five on one situation!
The associate moves to trade blows with Magnus, but Magnus hooks the associate up in a bear hug…BELLY TO BELLY SUPLEX INTO THE LADDER!!! The ladder teeters over…HEART JUMPS UP AND GRABS A HOLD OF THE CORD HOLDING THE BELT UP AS THE LADDER FALLS!
Eryk Masters: Heart STILL has a chance!
Heart, overcome with fear, tries to scale up the cord for better leverage, kicking his feet around as Magnus double clotheslines the two associates arguing with Dean! He quickly takes a hold of the ladder and looks at Heart. Without thinking, he folds the ladder up…measures underneath Heart…AND HARPOONS HEART DIRECTLY IN BETWEEN THE LEGS WITH THE LADDER!!!!
Other Guy: GODDAMN. GOD…DAMN!
Heart gulps and lets go of the cord, falling to the mat…RIGHT INTO A MODIFIED POWER BOMB ONTO THE LADDER FROM MAGNUS!!
Eryk Masters: Magnus was able to catch Heart…somewhat…and direct his fall RIGHT into the ladder!
Magnus gets up, screaming to the fans who are eating every last moment of this up. He staggers over to the ropes and rests against them, knowing he’s going to have plenty of time to rest. Suddenly, the fans RIP into boos as one of the associates…HANDCUFFS Magnus…to himself!
Other Guy: The associate of Mr. Heart has handcuffed himself to Magnus!
Magnus glares at the associate, who is barely conscious as he HURLS the key into the crowd! Magnus begins to kick and attack the associate brutally as the only other associate up and capable of doing anything slowly picks the ladder back up and sets it up on the center of the ring! Magnus begins to drag the dead weight of the other associate with him as he claws at the second associate! Magnus pulls with all of his might, but the cuff only digs into his skin! Heart is slowly coming to from the second associate slapping him gently on the cheek, the fans booing MERCILESSLY.
Other Guy: Well, how the hell can Magnus POSSIBLY win this now?!
The associate picks Heart up and places him on the ladder and quickly dives onto Magnus, who is punching wildly with his one good hand. Meanwhile, Heart is moving slowly up the ladder, rung by rung.
Eryk Masters: By hook or by crook, Mr. Heart is climbing that ladder!
Other Guy: But Magnus is doing everything he can to beat the associate and drag the other one with him!
The fans ERUPT, however, when out from the back…COMES JAIME ALEJANDRO!! Alejandro SPRINTS down the entrance ramp and has…CUTTERS IN HIS HAND! He slides into the ring and quickly shows Magnus what he has as he NAILS the last associate in the face with an elbow smash! Magnus holds his arm up and Alejandro steadies his hand…
Other Guy: Things are gonna get CRAZY!
Eryk Masters: Alejandro might have lost his title, but he has NEVER lost his honor!
Alejandro SNAPS the chain and Magnus QUICKLY SPRINTS up the ladder, two rungs at a time, trying to get to the top! Heart sees Magnus and scurries to the top as well! The two foes lock eyes and immediately start trading blows! Magnus hits Heart’s head on the ladder and grabs a hold of the belt, but Heart hits him in the side! Heart reaches for the belt, but Magnus headbutts him! Heart rocks backward, stunned from the headbutt as Magnus reaches up and unbuckles a piece of the belt!
Eryk Masters: This is your chance, MAGNUS!
Heart suddenly holds his finger up as if he’s remembered something…and reaches in his pants and QUICKLY NAILS MAGNUS IN THE HEAD WITH A RIGHT HAND!
Other Guy: OH!
Magnus lets go of the belt and reaches up to his head, where blood starts to drip down from the hairline. Mr. Heart holds himself steady as he waves to Magnus…with a hand wrapped in BRASS KNUCKLES. Magnus falls back…and he falls…and lands HARD on the mat with a SICK THUD. Heart opens his tights and drops the knuckles back in, the fans BOOING as he reaches up, unbuckles the last piece of the belt…
…the bell rings…
Samantha Coil: LADIES AND GENTLEMEN…YOUR WINNER…AND NEEEEEEEEEEEEEW SIN CITY CHAMPION…MIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISTEEEEEER…HEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAART!!!
…and we have a NEW Sin City Champion!
Other Guy: I can’t believe it, Eryk!
Eryk Masters: The UK Dragon couldn’t do it! Charles Brandon Magnus couldn’t do it! Jaime Alejandro couldn’t do it!
Other Guy: But Mr. Heart and four well trained associates could!
Heart stands on the ladder as EMTs and Jaime Alejandro check on Magnus who is out cold and bleeding. Alejandro glares up at Heart, who climbs down the ladder, “The Almighty Dollar” BLARING in the arena. He throws the belt over his shoulder, laughing as he leaves the disaster area. His associates are down. His opponent is down. The ring is a mess. Mr. Heart…is the Sin City Champion.
Other Guy: Ladies and gentlemen…The Most Gracious Champion in the SHOOT Project…MR. HEART!
Heart bows to the fans as he leaves the arena, while EMTs continue to work on Magnus.
The scene fades into the back. Jester Smiles is sitting in his locker room. He’s twirling an empty water bottle on a table, looking rather bored and a bit flustered. He brightens up a bit, though, as he hears a knock on the door.
Jester Smiles: Come in.
Jaime Alejandro enters the room slowly. After fighting a losing battle from earlier in the evening, he looks exhausted. He notices the clown’s demeanor a bit.
Jaime Alejandro: Long time no see, Clown…
Jester grins a little bit, standing up and extending his hand to Jaime.
Jester Smiles: Well if it isn’t the One Man-sorry, no. The SAINT! This is unexpected, but good to see none the less. The Hero and the Saint in the same room. You got the message, I hope?
Jaime takes the Clown’s hand and shakes in earnest.
Jaime Alejandro: I was the One Man Riot at one time, Clown. Then I ended up getting messed up big time. I got your message. So, tell me? What do you see that I’m not seeing?
Jester’s grin goes away slightly.
Jester Smiles: Look man, I know King better than all of you. I mean, I’m sure you all see his talk of ‘fixing’ SHOOT and what not as bullshit, but what you don’t know about this man is just how evil, how dangerous, and how smart he actually is. I’ve seen his manipulation first hand, and now look. He’s got one of the CHAIRMEN on his side! Dude, you don’t know this man like I know this man. What he’s doing now, it’s bad. It’s very bad. People are going to get hurt, badly, and not just people on the roster, but innocent people. Friends, family, the works.
And don’t think ‘not being involved’ will help anybody. You want to fight for the Sin City Championship again? Or go after the Iron Fist? The World Title? If Pestalance wants it? Corazon? King? You won’t get it. You’ll be the target, and they won’t just keep you from being a champion.
They’ll come to shatter everything you love. They’ll go after loved ones. They’ll aim at breaking your legs. If these individuals keep this power they have, it’s game over for SHOOT man. Game fucking over.
Jaime Alejandro: I know King’s talk is bullshit, Smiles. He reminds me of a punk you and I know well. Keith Owens.
He sighs a bit, as he thinks about this words carefully.
Jaime Alejandro: You know what happened the last time I was involved in a war, Jester. How I nearly lost control.
Jester sits down, as if the energy were just sucked out of his legs.
Jester Smiles: I don’t pretend to know shit about you, Jaime. Mostly that we’ve worked in the same building a couple of times, I think we’ve had some passing conversations, and that you’ve got a hell of a reputation.
What you all don’t realize is that, if this doesn’t become a war, it’ll become an occupation. We’ll be controlled, and anyone’s hope of getting anywhere we’ll be fucking gone.
Jester Smiles: I can’t keep fighting these battles alone, man.
Jaime keeps standing for a second. He realizes where Jester is right now.
Jaime Alejandro: Welcome to where I was in the FLF battle, Jester. Where you lose hope and you suddenly realize that you are alone. That nobody understands a damn thing.
You want me to fight a war that I know nothing about. That was the young man I used to be. The older man I am now… He doesn’t have a lot left. You’re asking me to fight a war where I could lose it all.
Jester shakes his head. The voice that comes out next seems to have no energy. It’s without hope or any of the familiar brightness people are used to seeing from Jester. It’s completely defeated.
Jester Smiles: I’m 30 man. I may not be as old as you, and I may have both eyes working, but my legs hurt every morning I wake up, and parts of my body tremble at times for seemingly no reason at all. Most of the doctors I’ve gone to see have told me I shouldn’t be doing this anymore.
I know what growing old feels like. I know what it’s like to strap on your boots and walk to the ring, not sure if you are going to be walking out on your own.
But mark my words, if people don’t realize how bad things are soon, and if people don’t start fighting soon.
Jester looks Jaime in the eyes.
Jester Smiles: You’ll lose it all anyway.
Jester looks away again. He goes back to spinning the bottle.
Jester Smiles: If that’s all you have to say, though, you can leave.
Jaime looks at Jester and nods.
Jaime Alejandro: No, that’s not all I have to say, Jester. You’re fighting the wrong war. This isn’t an enemy you can take out with brute force. Until you learn that…
He turns around and leaves the room.
Jaime Alejandro: …you’ll either learn how to fight the Devil, or become him.
Jaime doesn’t hear what Jester has to say next. As the door shuts, Jester utters one last thing. The camera only barely picks it up as it begins to fade out.
Jester Smiles: But…but…someone has to be the hero?
We cut backstage where Lennox ‘The Ox’ Ferguson is standing, arms crossed, wearing a Charlestown Chiefs jersey and black sweatpants. The SHOOT Project start cracks a smile as he looks over both of his shoulders, surveying his locker room, before turning back to the camera.
The Ox:If you had told me 20 years ago when I was a star-struck kid watching the legends of wrestling performing on TV every week… that I would be getting ready to suit up and stretch for a match where I would have thousands of fans? I would have jumped for joy and challenged you to fight me in the back yard. Best two out of three.
Ox lowers his head.
The Ox:If you would have told me a year ago that I would have been on a wrestling program, let alone fighting for one of its championship belts… I would have laughed because of how rediculous it would have sounded. But… here I am.
Ox shakes his head and laughs.
The Ox:Here I am. An adult with a serious case of arrested development and the actual arrests to prove it is making money by fighting men who have made this their career; men who have jumped from one federation to the other, some over decades. Men who have been in the industry as soon as they could legally sign the paperwork to do so… men like Cade Sydal.
The Ox’s joking expression suddenly drops, his voice lowering several octaves.
The Ox:Men like Cade Sydal… who think that they can push people around and not suffer any repercussions for their actions. The kind of men who SHOOT seems to be filled to the brim with – in the ring and behind the scenes. The kind of men who remind me of why I even though I lack the experience, the history, the pedigree of a man like Cade Sydal, I. AM. HERE.
Ox raises a taped hand up to the camera, clenching it into a fist.
The Ox: And I’m not going away… not until these men, starting with Cade Sydal tonight, learn some humility – even if it has to be knocked into them.
* RING *
* RING *
The camera stays locked on Lennox Ferguson as he drops his gaze to his pants pocket where he pulls out his cell phone.
The Ox:Yes, this is he.
As quickly as Ox’s face became red with the anger of his empassioned speech, it became as white as a sheet.
Ox turns his face away from the camera.
The Ox:Wh- When?
T- Thank you… for letting me know.
Yes. I’ll leave as soon as I can.
Lennox Ferguson closes his cell phone and just stands there, back to the camera, for several seconds before the sound of a door opening from behind the camera can be heard. The camera spins around to find Sarah King standing in the doorway.
Sarah King: Lennox! You’re match is starting! Why are you still dressed like that?
Lennox turns back around and looks at Sarah King, the color beginning to return to his face.
The Ox: R- Right. Let’s go.
Ox throws off his jersey and his sweatpants, walking toward the door and following Sarah King out into the hallway, walking towards the ring.
Samantha Coil: Ladies and gentlemen…the following contest is for the Iron Fist Championship OF THE WORLD and will be contested under Iron Fist Rules!
Other Guy: She finally got it right without being prompted!
Samantha Coil: Introducing first…
WHO THE HELL SAID ANY OF YOU GET A TASTE, STUPID?
Samantha is cut off as :Lights Out: by Mindless Self Indulgence blasts through the Epicenter.
Lennox Ferguson emerges from backstage, wearing a toned down version of his regular match attire. Instead of a full-length pair of tights and boots, he is standing wearing nothing more than a form-fitting pair of green shorts.
Other Guy: Was Ox’s regular outfit in the cleaners or something? What’s the deal?
Eryk Masters: I highly doubt that’s the case, OG. If I had to guess, I think he’s making a showing of not hiding anything in his gear, unlike his opponent.
Other Guy: Oh please, that was so last month. He needs to get over it already!
Ox stands at the top of the ramp way for a few seconds before stepping to his right, which allows Sarah King to emerge at his side. The two of them nod to each other before heading down the ramp and allowing Samantha Coil to continue.
Samantha Coil: The challenger. Accompanied by his manager, and tonight’s timekeeper, Sarah King! Hailing from New Your City! He is LENNOX! THE OX! FERRRRRRRRRGUSONNNNNNNNNNN!
Lennox walks Sarah over to the timekeeper’s position before backing up toward the ring and rolls in under the bottom rope. He stands in the center of the ring as his music fades out, he then turns his attention back toward the ramp. Suddenly, the lights drop.
I can almost taste it…
The fans begin to boo loudly.
It makes no sense to me…
What does it all mean?!
A spotlight slowly comes to stop on the entrance ramp.
I can almost taste it…
I can almost see it!
It makes no sense to me…
What does it all mean?!
I can almost taste it…
I just wanna be famous!
You dream of trading places
I have been changing faces
You can not fill these shoes
There is too much to lose
I wake up behind these trenches
You run around defenseless
There is to much to lose
You can not fill these shoes
I just wanna be famous but…
Be careful what you wish for…
As “Almost Famous” by Eminem (featuring Lisa Rodriguez) continues Cade Sydal steps through from the back and out onto stage. The Iron Fist Championship worn around his waist, a black shirt with an orange “No Fear” logo on it worn with his green and orange shorts. His blonde hair is wet and in his face as he walks down the ramp, followed by Cassi Ryan, hand-in-hand.
Samantha Coil: And his opponent, the champion! From Southport, North Carolina, and accompanied by Cassi Ryan! He is the current reigning and defending, SHOOT Project Iron Fist Champion of the World! CAAAAAAAAAADE SYDALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!
The couple continue their way down the ramp toward the ring, with Cade kissing Cassi on the cheek when they make it down the ramp. Cade swats Cassi on the rear and points her toward the timekeeper’s station, and Cassi happily obliges, smirking at the less-than-pleased Sarah King.
Other Guy: Looks like Cade is going to have Cassi keep an eye on Sarah, tonight!
Eryk Masters: He’s going to have to, because he won’t be allowed to touch her under any circumstances or his title is forfeit!
Cade slowly gets into the ring, ordering the referee to back the Ox up away form him. Cade steps into the middle of the ring, holding the Iron Fist Championship (of the World) high over his head, he turns a slow circle with a grin on his face before handing the title to Samantha Coil as she exit’s the ring. The music slowly fades out and the lights return to normal.
Other Guy: Take a good look, E! That’s what a real champ looks like!
Eryk Masters: I liked you better when you didn’t like Cade so much…
Other Guy: Why? You used to like him.
The bell sounds and immediately Cade Sydal throws his shirt out of his hand and toward Ox’s face, but Ox ducks under it! Cade follows right behind and is met with a right jab to the cheek that rocks him! A second and third punch follow right behind the first, backing Cade up to the ropes!
Eryk Masters: Cade tried the same trick he started the match with last time, but it backfired!
Other Guy: You can’t blame a guy for trying!
Ox whips Cade off the ropes and catches him as he rebounds with a hard back elbow that drops him to the canvas, holding his mouth! Cade quickly rolls out of the ring, creating distance between himself and the challenger, but Ox steps through the ropes and drops to the ground behind Cade!
Other Guy: Cade, you better watch out!
Cade spots Ox as the big man starts moving toward him, and takes off running! Ox gives chase, and Cade quickly slides into the ring and runs to the other side, sliding back out, with ox following several steps behind! Cade rounds the corner just as Ox slides back out of the ring, and Cade quickly turns around and slides his chest against the canvas, catching Ox on the other side of the corner around the head, Cade swings his body out and plants Ox with a tornado DDT!
Eryk Masters: What the–?!
Other Guy: That was awesome!
A small section of the crowd, near the front, begin a small chant.
You’re Still Awesome! Clap, clap, clap clap clap. You’re Still Awesome! Clap, clap, clap clap clap. You’re Still Awesome Clap, clap, clap clap clap.
Cade sits up and points at his head, smirking in the direction of the smarky group he mouths “I know” before pushing the rest of the way to his feet and pulling Ox with him. Ox shoves Cade backward away from him, and Cade shakes his head slowly. He looks over at Sarah King and blows her a kiss before turning and rushing at Ox! But Ox ducks his head down and launches Cade up and over with a back body drop, sending him over the security railing and into the crowd about five or six rows deep!
Eryk Masters: This match has just started, and already it’s spilling over into the sold out Epicenter!
Other Guy: This is madness!
The referee gets out of the ring and follows Ox over the security barricade into the crowd, unable to see if Cade is up or not and so unable to count. Cade starts to push off of some chairs and fans (excited about being part of the action, apparently as they take the time to cheer loudly into the camera that follows), and Ox grabs him by the arm to help him the rest of the way to his feet before scooping him up and turning to dump him with a body slam in the aisle way!
Other Guy: Owe! That looked like it hurt!
Eryk Masters: Serves the arrogant little bastard right!
Other Guy: You really don’t like him, do you?
Eryk Masters: No, I don’t. Not at all.
Cade manages to get turned over to a knee and uses an unsuspecting fan to pull himself to his feet and sits in the young man’s lap. Ox grabs Cade out of the spectator’s lap and pulls him to his feet before punching him hard in the face! Cade stumbles toward the barricade, and Ox follows right behind him and clubs both arms hard into Cade’s back, propelling him toward the barricade! Cade turns when he gets to the railing and is met with a clothesline from Ox, right over it and back to the ringside area!
Eryk Masters: Get him Ox! Teach that bastard a lesson in humility!
Other Guy: …maybe you should switch to decaf…
Cade grabs the barricade and starts pulling himself up as Ox and the referee make their way back over it. As soon as Ox gets on the other side of the barrier, Cade kicks hard into his knee, buckling it and creating some much needed distance for the champion. Cade pulls himself the rest of the way up before driving both thumbs into the eyes of Lennox Ferguson!
Other Guy: Now that’s how you turn a blind eye, haha! Get it? Blind eye?
Eryk Masters: You’re horrible, and so was that!
Cade pushes hard on Ox’s face, his thumbs leading the way, backing Ox up toward the timekeeper’s station. Cade ducks under a wild swing from the blinded Ox, and grins over at Sarah King, who turns to look the other way, before he points at her and looks to his girlfriend, Cassi. Cassi nods and moves back to Sarah, grabbing her by the face, she turns her head and makes her watch as Cade kicks swiftly up into Ox’s groin!
Eryk Masters: Oh come on! What the hell, man?!
Other Guy: Come on, E. You know as well as I do that’s legal in this kind of match.
Eryk Masters: Legal doesn’t make it right!
The referee looks down at Ox, who crumples to the ground holding between his legs, as Cade walks over to Cassi slowly and shares a kiss with her. The referee begins to count, reluctantly.
Ox pushes to his knees, breaking the count, his teeth gritted. Cade shakes his head slowly and moves toward his nearly-fallen opponent, but is rewarded with a punch to the abdomen for his troubles!
Eryk Masters: There you go, Ox! Keep fighting!
Other Guy: I thought you were supposed to be the impartial one?
Ox pushes the rest of the way to his feet and Cade backs away from him, sliding into the ring. Ox stares hard at his adversary and slowly slides into the ring as well. Cade rushes to stomp on Ox, and succeeds, but Ox grabs the leg and pulls hard on it, tripping Cade up! Ox quickly climbs on top of Cade, getting into the mount position, he drives his right fist into Cade’s mouth! Followed by a left! And then a right! And another left!
Other Guy: Good God! Ox is like a man possessed!
Eryk Masters: He’s had his eyes dug into and his nuts kicked! Wouldn’t you be a little angry too, OG?!
Other Guy: Well, yeah, but…
Ox continues to hammer his fists repeatedly into Cade’s face, mostly around his mouth, and blood starts to pour from Cade’s upper lip before Ox stops and pushes off the Iron Fist Champion (of the World)! The referee checks on Cade and begins to count.
Cade turns over and starts pushing up, spitting blood from his mouth to the canvas. Ox grabs Cade and pulls him the rest of the way up, stopping the count himself. Cade wraps his hands around the back of Lennox’s head and drops quickly, planting his head in Ox’s chin with a jawbreaker! Ox staggers back and Cade pushes up, spits another trail of crimson, and then leaps up for a NINJAGUIRI! But Ox ducks under it, and Cade spirals through to his feet as Ox hit’s the ropes! Cade turns around, right into a spear!
Other Guy: Cade is broken in half!
Eryk Masters: There you go, Ox!
The crowd begin to cheer loudly as Ox stares down at Cade!
Cade turns over to his belly and starts pushing himself up!
Cade pushes to both knees, breaking the count, and Ox pulls him the rest of the way to his feet from behind and hooks under his arm, looking for a back suplex. Ox throws Cade up and over, but Cade back flips through and lands on his feet!
Other Guy: Now there’s a sign of that athleticism Cade has been known for!
Eryk Masters: You mean he can do something other than cheat? Call the presses!
Ox turns toward Cade, who turns through a spinning back kick right into ox’s gut! Cade runs to the ropes and springboards off the middle, turning he catches Ox by the head and sits out on either side of it, driving Ox’s face into the canvas with a springboard X-Factor! Cade rolls out of the ring, while the referee starts counting.
Other Guy: Did you see that, E?!
Cade lifts up the ring skirting and finds a plastic bag with rolls of duct tape in it. He dumps the tape out of the bag and grins as he rolls back into the ring.
Eryk Masters: Yes I did, but do you see what Cade has in his hands?!
Ox pushes to his knees, breaking the count just as Cade moves behind him. Cade quickly wraps the bag over Ox’s head, and holds it tight down around the under side of his chin!
Eryk Masters: Someone needs to stop this! He’s trying to kill him!
Cade wraps his legs around Ox’s body from behind and pulls back, choking Ox out with the white plastic bag! The fans begin to boo loudly, and Cassi leaves Sarah King’s side to get closer to the ring. She starts yelling at Cade, and it sounds like she’s trying to call him off! Ox flails his arms and legs, trying to work out of Cade’s grasp!
Eryk Masters: Even his girlfriend knows he’s gone too far, OG!
Other Guy: What are you yelling at me for? He’s the one choking Ox, not me!
Ox’s flailing gets weaker before it finally stops all together. Cassi looks at Cade, pleadingly, and Cade finally lets go of the bag. Cade unwraps his legs from Ox’s midsection and backs away from the scene. The official quickly moves to ox and takes the bag off of his face, before reluctantly starting his count. Cade watching intently the whole time.
Eryk Masters: I can’t believe he’s actually counting! He should be calling paramedics down to the ring!
Other Guy: he doesn’t have a choice, E! The match is only going to end when one of them doesn’t answer a ten count, and right now it’s looking like Ox might be the one to stay down!
Ox starts to push up and Cade starts to tap his right foot on the canvas, spitting another trail of blood from his bleeding mouth. Sarah King suddenly jumps into the ring as Cade starts to move to kick Ox, Sarah jumps on his back and starts pulling on his hair! Cade quickly throws his arms out, showing the world he isn’t touching her!
Other Guy: Hey, she can’t do that!
Eryk Masters: Says who?! You’re the one telling me there aren’t any real rules in this match, remember?
Ox struggles to catch his breath, unaware of the situation behind him, as Cassi now gets in the ring and grabs Sarah by her hair, pulling her off of Cade’s back! Sarah turns and starts pulling on Cassi’s hair, and Cade turns to the two women, trying to pull Cassi free from Sarah’s grasp! Meanwhile, Ox finally pushes back to his feet.
Other Guy: Cade! Turn around!
Cade turns around just as Ox does the same. Ox swings a hard punch for Cade’s face, but Cade turns and ducks under it, grabbing Cassi by the am he pulls her down with him and the fist crashes right into Sarah King’s face! Sarah drops to the canvas immediately, right there by the ropes, and Ox looks down at her. His eyes wide, his mouth open, the perfect picture of shock!
Eryk Masters: Oh no!
Other Guy: That’s gonna leave a huge bruise, and this time there is no mistaking it! Ox hit Sarah!
The ringside medical trainers quickly move to check on Sarah King, who isn’t moving. Cassi rolls out of the ring, just as Cade grabs Ox by the shoulder and turns him around, spitting a blue mist from his mouth into Ox’s eyes and face!
Other Guy: Now that’s a classic play out of Cade’s playbook right there! And that’s why he’s the champ!
Ox screams in pain, as the substance appears to burn his eyes, he wipes at them quickly. Cade quickly rolls out of the ring and reaches under it, this time coming up with two kendo sticks. He grins and slides into the ring with both in hand. He swings the one in his right hand into the front of Ox’s knees! The kendo stick in his left hand quickly follows, cracking across Ox’s chest! Cade stpes back as Ox falls to his knees and clutches his chest, before swinging both kendo sticks downward, right on top of Ox’s head, splitting the skin open right under his hairline and Ox drops to the canvas in a heap! Blood rolls down his face as Cade drops one of the kendo sticks and bows with the other in his hand like a swordsman.
Eryk Masters: Ox is busted open!
Other Guy: More importantly, Ox is down!
Cade idly twirls the kendo stick in his fingers, watching Ox as he begins to stir.
Ox pushes up to his feet, letting the blood pour from the open wound down his face and drip to the mat. Cade grips the kendo stick in both hands and Ox turns around. Cade swings the kendo stick like a baseball bat for Ox’s face, but Ox ducks under it! Ox stops behind Cade and shoves him hard from behind into the near corner, and Cade hit’s the corner chest first, dropping the kendo stick on impact! Ox rushes at him from behind and delivers a running elbow smash to the back of the head!
Eryk Masters: There’s the Oxbow!
Cade stumbles backward out of the corner and Ox hit’s the ropes! Cade turns just as Ox swings for a Clothesline from Hell, but Cade ducks!
AND OX CATCHES HIM BY THE HEAD! Ox jumps and spins through a jumping Implant DDT! The fans begin to cheer loudly!
Other Guy: How the hell?!
Ox slowly pushes to his feet just as the medical trainers help Sarah King out of the ring. Ox looks down at Cade, as the referee starts to count!
Sarah King slowly turns away from the trainers and heads back to the ring, rolling into it!
Sarah grabs one of the discarded kendo sticks and stands next to Ox! The fans are going crazy!
Eryk Masters: What does Sarah have in mind?
Other Guy: I don’t know, but it doesn’t look good for Cade!
Cade pushes up to his knees and breaks the count! He looks up, right at Sarah and Ox as Sarah raises the kendo stick up high, staring right at the champion! Sarah turns and drives the kendo stick into Ox’s face, right across the eyes, and the unsuspecting Ox drops to the mat hard!
Eryk Masters: What?!
The fans begin to boo! Loudly!
Other Guy: Well, he did hit her!
Eryk Masters: ON ACCIDENT!
Sarah swings the kendo stick down hard at Ox’s body, right across the chest. She starts to yell at him, loud enough for the ringside camera to pick her up.
Sarah King: You worthless! (CRACK! Right across the belly) Son of a bitch! (CRACK! This time into Ox’s ribs again) You’re nothing to me now! (CRACK! Across the side of Ox’s head!) You hear me? You’re worthless now! (CRACK! Into the head again!) I’m going to own your father’s company now! (CRACK! Again, right in the head)
She brings the kendo stick down again across Ox’s head, breaking it finally, she drops it and kicks him one time in the chest with the heel of her shoe before she turns to the ropes and steps through them. Cade watches on, with a slow smile creeping across his face.
Eryk Masters: What the hell was that all about?
Other Guy: Who knows? Right now, all I know is that Cade Sydal has a match to win!
Cade pulls himself the rest of the way to his feet as the referee looks down at Ox, unsure. Cade points and yells.
Cade Sydal: COUNT!
The referee doesn’t move, as Sarah King makes her way up the ramp and to the back. Cassi Ryan yells at the official from outside, telling him to count as well, before Cade grabs him by his shirt and gets in his face.
Cade Sydal: COUNT OR YOU’LL JOIN HIM!
Cade pushes the referee away from himself. With reluctance on his face, the referee slowly begins his count.
The referee looks over to Cade, who stares back at him.
Eryk Masters: He can’t seriously be okay with this!
The fans begin to boo loudly, despite the slower count, as Ox remains motionless.
Other Guy: Why shouldn’t he be? It’s not his fault Sarah went batshit insane!
Cade Sydal: COUNT FASTER!
Ox turns over to his side, and some fans begin to cheer him on!
Eryk Masters: It might not be his fault, but he sure looks happy about it!
Cade stares at Ox as he starts to push himself up!
Other Guy: Could this count be any slower?
OX PUSHES TO HIS KNEES! Cade turns to the referee as soon as he stops counting and his eyes bug out of his head! Cade grabs the referee and pushes him back in the corner, yelling at him!
Cade Sydal: ARE YOU FUCKING STUPID?! WHAT THE HELL!? THAT WAS TEN! WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?!
Ox pushes to his feet, his hands finding the handle to the second kendo stick, he grips it in his hands. He clutches his head with his other hand.
Cade Sydal: FUCK! NOW I’M GONNA HAVE TO END THIS MYSELF!
Cade turns around, and Ox reacts immediately, swinging the kendo stick down right between Cade’s eyes, shattering it on impact! Cade drops to the canvas and the Epicenter nearly explodes with cheers!
Eryk Masters: Yes! Finally!
Other Guy: What the–?!
The referee shows no hesitation in counting!
Other Guy: All that talk about fighting fair and…
Eryk Masters: And Cade got what he had coming to him!
Cade pushes up!
But doesn’t make it to his knees in time, and the bell sounds! The fans are beside themselves!
Samantha Coil: Here is your winner! And NEEEEEEEEEW Iron Fist Champion! LENNOX “The x” FERRRRRGUSONNNNNNNNNNNN!
Eryk Masters: Whoa! What a shocker here tonight folks!
Other Guy: Bullshit! Cade was blindsided! After all that talk, Lennox Ferguson was nothing but a hypocrite!
Eryk Masters: The deck was stacked against him, OG, even if he didn’t know it. He had to face off against Cade Sydal, the distractions of Cassi Ryan, and to top it all off the betrayal of his own manager, Sarah King! The Ox SURVIVED this match, and Cade didn’t!
As Eryk Masters and Other Guy nearly come to blows over the outcome of the match, Ox is on his knees in the center of the ring. His head bowed down as he finally releases the handle of the broken kendo stick with the rest of the splinters on the mat.
The crowd roars a mix of disapproval and cheers, and the ref grabs the title belt from Samantha Coil and tries to hand it to Ox.
Ox turns his head up towards Samantha Coil and his blood-smeared face just looks THROUGH Samantha Coil as he slowly gets to his feet. Coil quickly hands Ox the belt and the approving founds soon drown out the nay-sayers as a chant begins to course through the arena:
OX! OX! OX! OX!
OX! OX! OX! OX!
As Ox holds the belt loosely in his hands, he raises his head to the ceiling and closes his eyes before letting out a gut-wrenching scream of rage which is drowned out by the chorus of fans still chanting his name.
The scene fades into the back once again. Jester Smiles is in the same place he was when last we saw him, staring at the door. There seems to be no emotion on his face whatsoever. He just stares at the door, motionless.
But he jumps when there is a knock.
Jester Smiles:Come in!
The door opens, revealing Abigail Chase:. Jester shrinks back into his chair, the state of melancholy returning.
Abigail Chase:: Got time for a few questions, Jester?
Jester Smiles:Why not?
Abigail Chase:: So, has anyone answered your message?
Jester Smiles:Yeah, one guy. He told me no. After that, I’ve been sitting here. The past few hours I’ve just been sitting here, staring at that door, expecting someone, anyone to walk through and finally give me the yes I’m looking for.
But they didn’t, Abigail. They don’t care. They’re too preoccupied with their own bullshit, their own insignificant bullshit to give a flying fuck about what this company really needs. This company needed a hero, not just one this time, but a group of them. Maybe not even heroes, but at least some people who gave a shit. Some people who legitimately cared about this company.
Abigail Chase:: So, what are you trying to say Je-
Jester Smiles:Maybe fucking KING was right! Maybe you all DON’T care! Maybe the real problem here is all of you fuckers! When have ANY of you, at ANY point, fought for something more than just your own fucking selves.
I asked the question, how bad does it have to get? The answer?
I don’t think it matters. If this building literally caught fire, I don’t think anyone here would give up the spit in their body to try and put it out. There is no passion, no heart.
SHOOT Project is dead, and I’m done.
Jester stands up and begins to walk out.
Abigail Chase:: Wait, so you are-
Jester Smiles:I’m just fucking done, Abigail. Good night. Enjoy your main event.
The door slams, causing Abigail to jump slightly.
Abigail Chase:: Well, you heard it here folks. Jester Smiles is leaving the building and…and…
And I’m not sure if he’s coming back or not.
The arena dims as the industrial horror sounds begin to emanate from the PA system. The sirens wail as “Release Yo Delf (Prodigy Remix)” by Method Man plays. Out from the back emerges…EDDIE E. The fans are booing LOUDLY. He walks down to the ring, nodding his head as the blood red spotlight shines down on him. His suit is beautifully pressed as he walks down to the ring. He steps into the ring quickly and motions for a microphone.
Eryk Masters: I shudder to think what kind of announcements he has to make tonight!
“Release Yo Delf” dies down.
Eddie E.: I hope you’ll pardon my arrival here tonight…all this excitement, I just HAD to come down and see for myself what all the hubbub was about!
The fans boo, naturally.
Eddie E.: A lot of people in the back want to get their hands on me, I’ve heard. Vendettas. Anger. Malice. Animosity. It’s all a bit tragic, really. One would think after all the violence that hit our esteemed leaders prior to me that the roster in the back wouldn’t be so quick to violently impeach me. So, you see…that got me to thinking.
Eddie paces as he speaks.
Eddie E.: I need a strong hand out here. Sure, Kilgore is my defense against your run of the mill heroes in the locker room, but I needed more. Donovan King is focused on becoming World Champion, Adrian Corazon on destroying Trey Willett…I mean, it stands to reason I need…a bit more help, right?
Other Guy: What about Pestalance?
Eryk Masters: I wouldn’t think Eddie would be willing to stay alone in a room with Pestalance, let alone trust him with his day to day affairs.
Eddie E.: So I thought to myself who have I ever seen that has the right ideas about how to be my hand to run this company? I can’t be here each and every show, nor can I trust anyone in the back to not try to bring harm to me, so who could I trust?
I needed someone with my cunning.
Eddie holds his finger up.
Eddie E.: I knew only ONE man who could do such a thing. From one businessman to another, we deal in Euros, not those trashy green things you lot here toss about. We deal in REAL funds.
The fans continue to boo.
Eddie E.: I wasn’t friends with this man, but I’ve always admired him. Truth be told, it would seem we’ve admired one another for a long time. So when I placed the call, he was only so happy to oblige me. Ladies and gentlemen…I’ll be brief because, you see…this man needs no introduction from me. He is my right hand. He is my rod. He is the FIST that shall CRUSH those who oppose my Sovereign!
I GIVE YOU…
Eddie holds his hand out towards the back as The Epicenter becomes bathed in a seizure-inducing red and black light show as the house lights immediately dim. The fans are speechless, none of them know what to make of what was just said.
Eryk Masters: No…
Other Guy: You gotta be kidding me!
Eryk Masters: NO!
Other Guy: Can’t be.
The video wall suddenly surges to life as two gold letters, written in old-fashioned script, slowly emerge from the black background.
The boos from the SHOOT faithful are absolutely thunderous even before "Sieben" by Subway to Sally starts playing over the arena’s speakers. Stepping out slowly from the back is a man dressed in a ridiculously flashy white-on-white Caraceni suit and a thin pair of Dolce & Gabanna designer sunglasses. He stops at the top of the ramp, letting the boos rain down on him before he slides his sunglasses up into his slicked back blonde hair.
Other Guy: It’s him! It’s Azrael friggin’ Goeren!
Eryk Masters: WHAT THE HELL!? GOEREN!? THEY BROUGHT IN AZRAEL GOEREN!?
Other Guy: I didn’t even think they would let that guy back into the country!
Goeren holds his hands out wide as if to embrace the jeering crowd, throwing his head back and displaying a twisted smile across his artificially tanned face. Popcorn bags and 24 ounce beer cups pour down from the upper balconies as Goeren remains still, letting the garbage pile up at his feet. He finally brings his head down and points towards the ring, cracking another smile as he begins his approach.
Eryk Masters: I can’t believe this…I…I…what the hell is going on!?
Other Guy: WHAT!? I CANT HEAR YOU! SPEAK LOUDER! USE SIGN LANGUAGE OR SOMETHING!
Azrael finally hits the ring, stepping through the ropes and starts waving to the seething crowd. He stops in his tracks in front of Eddie E, taking a few steps backwards. The two men circle each other in the ring before suddenly stopping…and end up shaking hands in the center of the ring, exchanging a few laughs at the fans’ sake.
The booing gets even louder as some of the garbage finds its way into the ring.
Other Guy: Did you ever think you would see this Eryk? Check it out…its the Megastar! Here! In SHOOT!
Eryk Masters: This is just absolutely outrageous OG. This is the guy that ran Outlaw Pro Wrestling into the ground with his psychotic leadership. Now he’s with us!?
Other Guy: Hey…I like him. Maybe he can get me one of those suits on the cheap.
Eryk Masters: Unbelievable.
Goeren signals for Samantha to hand him a microphone as he snatches it from her at ringside. He brings the mic to his mouth but is drowned out by thunderous boos. Goeren grins and shakes his head at Eddie E.
Eryk Masters: At least our fans are smart!
Azrael wipes a strand of blonde hair away from his face and folds his arms across the top ring rope, leaning into it. He calmly waits for the crowd to die down before finally speaking with his thick, irritating German accent.
Goeren: Mein Gott, it’s nice to know you people still do adore your Megastar.
If it’s possible, the boos actually get LOUDER.
Goeren: Friends, save your adulation for after the show. I’ll be having one of my autograph sessions directly after we finish here and I’ve brought plenty of 8 x 10s for everyone. Twenty dollars per photo, no customized sentiments though, I only brought one rubber stamp.
Azrael flashes a smile back at Eddie E.
Goeren: Now let’s get down to brass tacks. The last time you people saw me, I was running a little organization called Outlaw Pro Wrestling. I’m sure you all are familiar with it.
A smattering of boos and cheers.
Goeren: Thank you, thank you. You see, when I purchased control of OPW, I took a dying federation and turned that company around. When they got kicked off the air, who was the one who broadcasted their action over the web and created an internet sensation? ME. Who was the one who amped up the violence and greased the wheels behind the scenes to make sure they were never shut down for indecency? Yours truly. And who created a home for all of those nutjobs and lunatics to thrive in and perform each and every week?
Goeren points to himself.
Goeren: Unfortunately for wrestling fans everywhere, I was…called…back to Germany on business related matters that detained me overseas for the last few years.
But I was always watching.
Azrael loosens up his tie and begins to pace manically in the ring.
Goeren: Watching the way SHOOT was run over the last few months was a morbid curiosity of mine, much like watching a train wreck or a stand-up comedian in the 80s. So imagine my surprise last week when my office gets a phone call from none other than this man…Eddie E.
Azrael turns to his new associate.
Goeren: I was given the entire rundown on what was going on here in SHOOT and I was suddenly presented with an opportunity. An opportunity to come in and help Eddie here run the day-to-day operations of this company with the full backing of SHOOT’s Board of Directors.
Goeren gives Eddie a pat on the back.
Goeren: You see friends, nobody knows the mind-numbing bureaucracy of running a wrestling promotion like I do. I’ll be able to lighten the paperwork burden on Eddie E. here so he can focus more on doing what he does best…maintaining order and dishing out punishment.
Azrael grins once more.
Goeren: At the last Revolution, this man here told you all that a new era of SHOOT was dawning. Our era. I honestly could not have said it better myself. We have no room in SHOOT for the old and outdated. We have no room for individuals who are only after personal gain.
The OutKasts of SHOOT.
The Josh and Jason Johnsons of SHOOT.
All relics of the past that were quietly and efficient swept away over the last month.
Eryk Masters: Those men help build SHOOT into what it is today, where does this guy get off?
Other Guy: If you keep talking like that, you’re next. Maybe I’ll finally get a better partner.
Azrael starts pacing again, stopping as the fans unleash another barrage of boos.
Goeren: The real champions of SHOOT, the real heroes are the men and women who bleed this company through and through, not individuals who are just here to have the fans chant their name and think how fucking cool they are when they’re covered in blood. Donovan King, Kilgore Stochansky, Adrian Corazon and my old dear friend Pestalance…these are the men who stuck by this company when the going got tough. These are the ones who want to continue to help build SHOOT into a worldwide phenomenon. And yet you people boo THESE men?
Goeren looks angrily out at the crowd, holding his hands out to his side.
Goeren: Donovan King only wants stability for SHOOT, stability that will allow this company to thrive. I intend to do everything in my power to make sure that his dream becomes reality. It’s funny, but I’m actually shocked that your world champion Azraith DeMitri…
The crowd erupts with cheers as Azrael stops, glaring out at them. A slow but steady "DE-MI-TRI, DE-MI-TRI!" chant starts up.
Goeren: Aww, that’s cute. As I was saying, I’m shocked that Azraith DeMitri of all people is part of this problem here in SHOOT. I thought if anyone here would understand that what we’re doing is right, it would be my old friend Azraith. You see, for those who do not know, Azraith and I go way back. I’m talking before we were together in The Row. I’m even talking before the DIWF. In fact, and even Azraith would admit this, I’m one of the few individuals in this world who would count that sick son of a bitch as a friend.
Azrael motions for the cameraman to zoom in close.
Goeren: So…old friend…I’m only going to say this once, and hopefully you’ll listen to me. You cannot be our SHOOT World Heavyweight Champion.
Another explosion of boos.
Goeren: And don’t act like you don’t know the reason why. The way you act, the things you do in the ring…we’re looking to take SHOOT to the next level. To revolutionize wrestling one more time. I simply cannot have a man like you, a man who’s only focused on himself, to be the face of this company. Do what’s right. Drop the belt to Donovan King and I promise you I’ll convince Eddie over there to let you stay here in SHOOT when everything is said and done.
Azrael forces an incredibly fake smile.
Goeren: Now is not the time to discover some ridiculous sense of honor and morality. Thats not the Azraith I know. Do what you always do old friend, do what’s best for yourself and give us back the title. Otherwise…
Goeren stares down at the mat and shakes his head.
Goeren: Otherwise your long and prestigious career will end at King’s hands. You know Azraith, you had it partly right when you said a few weeks ago that this wasn’t a war, this was an insurgency that King had started. Only problem with that statement is its perception. King isn’t leading any insurgency, it’s you…you’re the insurgent.
You’re fighting a hopeless fight against a righteous cause.
You are holding back SHOOT with your actions Azraith, you and anyone else like you who wants to do what is best for themselves and not the company.
Don’t become outdated old friend.
I don’t want to be the one who has to take you out behind the barn.
Azrael slides his sunglasses back over his eyes, soaking once again in the hatred of the crowd. He slowly brings the microphone back to his lips.
Goeren: I suppose now there is just one thing left to say.
Long. Live. SHOOT.
Goeren drops the microphone and shakes hands once again with Eddie E. "Sieben" by Subway to Sally plays again as Azrael grins out at the crowd before making his way up the ramp with Eddie E. Security is trying their best at ringside to maintain order, holding back a few of the more overzealous fans.
Eryk Masters: This is so wrong OG. Azrael Goeren is a certifiable lunatic, how long before he starts putting up banners with his name on it or inducting himself into the Hall of Fame?
Other Guy: What else can we really do? The Board of Directors has spoken. Man, I’d like to see just who is on that damn board…
Eryk Masters: We’re screwed. Totally screwed.
The lights go down, and an orange glow takes over the ramp. A black image with only an orange smiley face takes over the video wall, drawn in a way similar to what happened to the chest of Curtis Rose. The fans boo, recognizing the SHOOT Project Soldier who’s on his way.
This is the point of no return I could never go back
Life without parole, up state shackled and trapped
Living in the hole, lookin’ at the world through a crack
But fuck that, I’d rather shoot it out and get clapped
I’ve gone too far, there ain’t no coming back for me
Auschwitz gas chamber full of Zyklon-B
Just like the Spanish exterminating Tynos
Raping the black and Indian women, creating Latinos
Motherfuckers made me out of self-righteous hatred
And you got yourself a virus, stuck in the Matrix
A suicide bomber strapped and ready to blow
Lethal injection strapped down ready to go
Don’t you understand they’ll never let me live out in peace
Concrete jungle, guerrilla war out in the streets
Nat Turner with the sickle pitch fork and machete
The end of the world, motherfucker you not ready
This is the point of no return and nobody can stop it
Malcolm little when he knelt before Elijah Muhammad
The comet that killed the dinosaurs, changing the earth
They love to criticize they always say I change for the worse
Like prescription pills when you miss-using them nigga
The Templar Knights when they took Jerusalem nigga
And figured out what was buried under Soloman’s Temple
Al Aksa the name is not coincidental
I know too much, the government is trying to murder me
No coming back like cutting your wrist open vertically
How could a serpent be purposely put in charge of the country
Genetic engineered sickness spread amongst me
My people are so hungry that they attack without reason
Like a fuckin’ dog ripping off the hand that feeds him
Immortal Technique is treason to the patriot act
So come and get me motherfucker cause I’m not coming back
“I’m BRUTAL. INHUMAN.”
Orange pyro EXPLODES and then dissipates into nothingness. Out from the back walks none other than Adrian Corazon, hair down, eyes covered by sunglasses. He’s got his typical scowl across his face. The overcoat covering him nearly sweeps the floor as he makes his way down to the ring. He ignores absolutely everything going on around him, keeping his eyes trained solely on the ring.
This is the point from which I could never return
And if I back down now then forever I burn
This is the point from which I could never retreat
Cause If I turn back now there can never be peace
This is the point from which I will die and succeed
Living the struggle, I know I’m alive when I bleed
From now on it can never be the same as before
Cause the place I’m from doesn’t exist anymore
Other Guy: That is a bad motherfucker, right there. Bad to the very core.
Eryk Masters: Will we see something “new” and “different” from Corazon? Or more of that thug mentality?
Other Guy: If you could see the look in dudes eyes, you’d pretty much just let him do whatever he wants. He scares me right down to the very essence of my being.
Corazon climbs into the ring, and casually removes his coat, as one of the ringside techs comes and picks it up. He stands in the center of the ring, facing the entryway, as Samantha Coil announces his arrival.
Samantha Coil: Introducing first, from Mexico City, Mexico… he stands at six feet, three inches tall… he weighs in at two hundred, twenty-five pounds… he is a former Iron Fist Champion… a former World Heavyweight Champion… he is the BRUTAL and the INHUMAN… ADRIAN CORAZON!
Fans letting Corazon have it, despite his decorations. Corazon still stands in the middle, unmoving. Unwavering.
The lights in the arena dim once again until they go completely black.
Other Guy: Oh here we go.
The chanting begins, and the fans begin to boo.
A hunter green spotlight shines down on the entrance way, where the lone Soldier stands, his head bowed, the hood of his sweatshirt pulled tight over his head.
I’M LIVIN’ IN THAT TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY
DOIN’ SOMETHIN’ MEAN TO IT
DO IT BETTER THAN ANYBODY YOU EVER SEEN DO IT
SCREAMS FROM THE HATERS GOT A NICE RING TO IT
…I GUESS EVERY SUPER HERO NEED HIS THEME MUSIC!
“Power” by Kanye West EXPLODES as golden and green pyro ERUPTS around the hooded man, who rips the hood off to glare at the booing fans. DONOVAN KING tears the hoodie off as the pyro continues to ERUPT on both sides of him. He has, on his waist, HIS SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Championship. King slaps his chest a few times on his “est. 1983” tattoo as he marches down to the ring, ignoring the boos as he walks over to the side of the ring where Corazon is standing.
Samantha Coil: Ladies and gentlemen…weighing in tonight at 245 pounds…he hails from Charlotte, NORTH CAAAAROLINA…HE IS…THE UNCROWNED…DONOVAN…KIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING!!!
King stands on the turnbuckle, his World Heavyweight Championship belt held high over his head, glaring down at his subjects like the peasants they are. He turns over his shoulder and glares towards the entry way. He slings the belt over his shoulder so he can mock Azraith from behind the curtain as he continues to glare at the fans before he hops down, standing side by side with Corazon.
The arena goes dark, save one single spotlight on the entrance ramp. The fans clamor, wondering which one of the challengers will be coming out next. Slowly, a large orange banner begins lowering, blocking the view of the curtain to the fans. The Banner is held aloft by two thick chains coming from the top two corners. As the banner finally unfolds, we can see that it is a large, orange banner showing the same black smiley-face that was carved into Curtis Rose’s chest.
Eryk Masters: Well, O.G. this is certainly something new. Corazon is already in the ring, so I can only imagine what this is all about.
Other Guy: Let’s see, Trey Willett is in this match, and he’s not out here yet. Just more showboating.
Just as the banner descends to it’s lowest point, “Shoot Outs” by Jadakiss and Styles P hit’s the PA. The fans erupt as they look towards the entrance ramp in complete hysteria.
Eryk Masters: That doesn’t sound like The Willenium to me, O.G. That sounds like INSTANT HEAT!
Other Guy: What are they doing here? Certainly they haven’t come back for revenge on King and Corazon. I saw that beating. There’s no way they are ready to be back in the ring this soon.
The fans continue to clamor in anticipation as the banner begins to sway back and forth.
Feds in the precinct lookin at our picture
If rap don’t work we gonna get it like Guy Fisher
I was taught to ride with them niggas thatl die with ya
Headed OT? Then bring some pies with ya
Buy your man a lambo and tell him to fly with ya
Or throw the nigga jewels and tell him to shine with ya
Corazon wraps his hands around the top rope and shoots a crooked grin towards the banner. Donovan King begins pacing back and forth, ready for a fight.
Like smith n wesson you don’t wanna feel the ghost
Or the kiss of death n’
Tubs still lift up
So do the sink now
Pablo escobar shit
Buyin a clink now
Dead presidents shit
Robbin the Brinks now
100 shot tommy guns
Hell of a stink now
Eryk Masters: Well one thing is for sure, if Real Deal and OutKast are coming out here, then Corazon and Donovan King are certainly ready for a fight!
The banner stops waving just for a moment. A few fans close to the ramp gasp as the bottom fringe of the banner catches on fire. The few fans grow into half of the arena staring at the entrance ramp as the entire banner is almost instantly engulfed in flame. The flames splinter the banner in half as they rise to the very tip of the chains holding it in place. The fabric splits from the chains holding it, and fall down onto the ramp.
On the average day we smoke about a quarter
And everythings is bad for a nigga nowadays
so we drink a lot of water
talk about you "so rich"
nigga you "so bitch"
that your parents probably think they got a daughter
yeah we them boys that bring all the terror
we persevered through all the errors
lay niggas down with all barettas
everything in the bag–chains, watches…
…all your leathers
So you can act funny with yourselves
I’m in the hood with dope
Sacks is filled twenty after twelve
A sign of the times kitchen cook 38, 38 treys
that remind you of dimes
The curtain is pushed open, and Trey Willett Flies from the back. He stops on the entrance ramp and stands between the two, now barely burning, pieces of banner lying on the ramp. He is wearing his classic white pants, a tight fitting Instant Heat T-shirt, and a tattered New York Mets hat. He stares towards the ring at Corazon who is still standing at the edge of the ring. Corazon seems to be almost chuckling at the spectacle before him.
Other Guy: Did I not tell you Eryk! I knew it was only a matter of time before Trey outdid himself again with another ridiculous entrance. Hey, remember that time he rode out on an elephant?
Eryk Masters: Trey Willett did say this week that he was dedicating this match to his friends Instant Heat and Curtis Rose. It appears that Trey decided to make a statement to Adrian Corazon tonite that he would not be intimidated.
Trey begins to make his way down the ramp. He stops a few times to slap hands with a few fans, but his eyes never waver from Adrian Corazon. Trey stops just shy of the ring, waiting for his partner to make his way down to the ring to get this match underway.
Other Guy: This situation really doesn’t bode well for Azraith tonight. His partner is still pretty banged up, and he’s facing two men that are out for nothing but pure destruction…
Eryk Masters: Though you have to ask…when has that ever stopped Azraith before?
The lights dim as a modulated voice croons over the speakers…
In a trail of fire I know we will be free again, in the end we will be one…
Samantha Coil: Coming to the ring, hailing from Seattle, Washington and weighing in at two-hundred sixty pounds…he is YOUR SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Champion…
Two bright blue spotlights cut through the darkness, strobing along with the slow beat as the crowd starts to roar.
In a trail of fire I’ll BURN before you BURY me, set your eyes for the SUUUUNNN!!!
Samantha Coil: AZRAITH DEMITRI!
The technorock hit of the song blasts over the speakers like a freight train as Azraith steps out into the strobing lights, already holding HIS SHOOT Project World Heavyweight Championship in the air. Despite the blood and the dent, the crowd cheers wildly for their champion. His eyes are calm and his jaw is set into a small, confident grin as he slowly makes his way down to the ring, moving his way up to the steps and climbing through the ropes to his teams corner.
Tony Lorenzo stands between the two teams in the center of the ring. He’s going over last minute instructions, as Azraith and Trey stare Corazon and King down. Lorenzo dismisses them back to their corners. Donovan King goes to the outside, as does Azraith DeMitri, indicating that Corazon and Trey Willett will be kicking this match off.
Other Guy: Now this is what I’m talking about. Not going to bullshit around at all, are we? We’re going to get right down to it.
Eryk Masters: I think that’s how all of these guys want it. Trey wants Corazon, and vice versa. Why muddy the waters, just yet? Let’s let these people get what they paid for, you know?
Lorenzo calls for the bell, and Trey immediately charges Corazon, who slickly moves out of the way. Trey hits the turnbuckles, turns around, and gets NAILED with a right hand. King watches as Corazon goes to work, lighting Trey up in their corner with rights and lefts to the face. The crowd is booing profusely at this unfortunate start for the Willenium, but Corazon ignores it and continues his assault, before Tony Lorenzo gets in between them and breaks them up.
Other Guy: Corazon does not fuck around, at all.
Eryk Masters: You know… it seems like a lot of what Corazon has done to this point has been predicated on being different, and new, but his style here is very much what we’re used to.
Other Guy: In that he doesn’t fuck around at all?
Eryk Masters: Basically.
Trey stands up straight behind Tony Lorenzo, holding his jaw. Corazon smirks at the Willenium, who becomes angry, and shoves Lorenzo out of the way. Trey charges Corazon once more, and is immediately shoved back into the corner. Corazon drives a right fist into Trey’s face once more, and then goes to work with a series of lefts and rights to Trey’s midsection. As Lorenzo gets back into position, Corazon moves so as to not be interrupted. He pulls Trey a few feet from the top turnbuckle and doubles him over, hooking him in a front facelock. Corazon snaps Trey over with a snap suplex, sprawling Trey out in the middle of the ring.
Eryk Masters: Corazon is both a gifted striker, a gifted brawler, and a well accomplished technical wrestler.
Other Guy: And he’s mixing that up here. He briefly went after Trey’s head, and now he goes after the body.
Azraith sees Trey, who’s a little closer to his corner, and outstretches his hand, calling for the tag. Trey sees this, and recognizes a brief moment where he might be able to make a tag, but shakes his head, defiantly. Corazon cocks his head at this behavior, and moves to Trey, pulling him up by his hair. Lorenzo calls out at Corazon about the hair pull, but gets ignored. Corazon pulls Trey into his side once more, and snaps him over again, with another snap suplex. He elects not to go for a cover, instead following up on his snap suplex. He lifts Trey up once more, and whips him into the ropes, and drives him back down into the mat with a double chop to Trey’s chest. Trey cries out in pain, and Corazon smiles, before dropping down on top of him with an elbow drop to the chest. Corazon covers!
Other Guy: Predictable kickout there, probably done for more of a psychological reason than anything else.
Eryk Masters: I’d have to agree, OG. Corazon is basically exacting dominance over Trey Willett right here. Imposing his will, so to speak.
Corazon stands up, as Trey begins to get to his feet. Trey gets to his knees, almost to a vertical base when Corazon DESTROYS Trey’s face with a snap kick to his head! Trey grabs at his face and hits the deck once more, but continues trying to get to his knees! Azraith stretches a hand out again, but Trey refuses with an emphatic “NO!” in his direction.
Eryk Masters: Trey’s out and out refusing to attempt a tag here. That’s extremely surprising.
Other Guy: Trey wants to try and hang with Corazon, is what this amounts to, Eryk. Giving in and making a tag would be like submitting to him.
Eryk Masters: Hopefully he comes to his senses soon…
Corazon cocks his head at the Willenium as the crowd boos in his direction. Corazon smiles and goes back to work, with Trey still on his knees. Corazon throws another kick at Trey’s face, but Trey ducks it and catches the leg that Corazon’s standing on, bringing him down to the mat! Trey scrambles to get up to follow up, and makes it to his feet, but Corazon is up nearly immediately afterward. Trey, frustrated, throws a right hand, which catches the Brutal and Inhuman, and rocks him back. Trey charges once more, and lifts Corazon up and into the turnbuckle. Trey lifts Corazon to the top rope, and climbs up after him! The crowd pops for Trey, and Azraith looks on with satisfaction!
Eryk Masters: Trey finally getting some offense in, hopefully he can capitalize on Corazon’s small mistake!
Other Guy: It’s a good thing, too. Trey was damn near finished from the previous exchange.
Trey and Corazon are both on the top turnbuckle, and Trey goes to work, burying his fist into Corazon’s face. Not once, not twice, but THREE times, before Corazon blocks it and shoves Trey off the top turnbuckle! Trey lands on his feet, but doesn’t recover well enough in time to dodge Corazon, as he comes down off the top turnbuckle and NAILS him in the face with a knee! Trey is down, flat on the canvas! Donovan King pops for Corazon, but the crowd answers back with a LOUD boo!
Eryk Masters: Corazon calls that the Act of Defiance! That’s a Shining Wizard style knee to the face, and he can hit it from anywhere!
Other Guy: This dude adding new moves to his arsenal is both sick, and scary, Eryk.
“NOT. GOOD. ENOUGH.” Corazon shouts, as he elects not to go for a cover, and instead, casually walks over to Donovan King, who stretches his hand out, and receives a tag, the crowd booing profusely behind them.
Other Guy: Corazon rubbing it in, as he makes the tag to Donovan King. Which is a bit of a surprising move, in my estimation. Corazon had Trey under total control, basically.
Eryk Masters: Well, now Donovan King takes over.
Trey’s back to one knee, as King makes his way to Trey’s position. Trey throws an elbow towards King’s gut, but King blocks it with a knee, and pulls Trey back to his feet. Azraith is SCREAMING behind Trey to try and get to make a tag, but Trey just shakes his head. The fans are on their feet, pulling for the Willenium, as King goes to work. He throws several elbows into Trey’s skull, rattling him, and sending him back into ropes. Az stretches out a hand, as Trey is quite close, but Trey refuses again and King slaps Az’s hand away.
“Wait your turn, bitch!”
Other Guy: King not even thinking about letting Trey make that tag, though Trey refused it one more time. What could he possibly be going for here?
Eryk Masters: He’s making a statement, OG. Simple as that.
Trey shoves King off of him, but King closes the distance quickly, and elbows him in the face one more time. King shakes his head, looking at the Willenium.
Other Guy: That statement is going to get him put right out, Eryk.
Eryk Masters: Well, look at it this way, OG. These two aren’t a team. Trey respects Azraith, but they clearly don’t get along. Azraith wants to get his hands on King, and on Corazon I’m sure, but… Trey’s got an agenda too.
King pulls Trey away from the ropes and just looks at him, almost with some sorrow. That sorrow quickly becomes disgust, though. King shoves Trey into his own corner, and Azraith forces a tag! The World Champion has entered the match! They begin trading punches! Azraith lands three right hands in a row, and King is rocked back to his corner. Corazon tags King in, and tries to springboard off the top rope! He attempts the Act of Inhumanity, but Azraith catches him and just drives him into the mat with a modified spinebuster!
Other Guy: Oh MAN.
Eryk Masters: It’s breaking down, here!
King goes after Azraith, but gets punched in the face, picked up and driven down with nasty DDT! Corazon and King both are laid out! Azraith goes to Corazon and picks him up off the canvas. He throttles the former World Champion and shoves him into the corner where Trey is recovering. Corazon rebounds somewhat off the turnbuckle, but Az LEVELS him with a lariat. Corazon’s down.
Other Guy: Donovan King better get back up soon, or this is going to get even uglier, really quickly.
Eryk Masters: Corazon was basically dispatched right there, and now he’s lying on his back. Pretty unexpected.
King is back to his feet, as Azraith turns from Corazon. Azraith moves towards King, who is still a bit groggy. Azraith locks him up with a collar and elbow, but King breaks it and nails Az with a European Uppercut! Azraith is staggered, and King lands ANOTHER one! Azraith staggers back once more, and King rushes in and spears the champion down! King goes to work, driving fist after fist into Azraith’s face! He gets up and yells at the crowd, who boos him profusely, but when he turns around, Az is back to his feet! Azraith clips King with an elbow, but King shoves him back!
Eryk Masters: This is nothing more than a fight, OG!
Other Guy: It’s sort of interesting to see how this has all played out, Eryk. Azraith, who has a large height and weight advantage over Corazon, essentially put him out, at least temporarily. He’s had a bit more trouble with King, and their sizes are a bit more similar.
Eryk Masters: King’s also got quite the axe to grind with Azraith, and vice versa. I’m sure that’s playing into the motivation just a bit.
Trey’s back up, standing on the outside now, when he sees the gift left for him by Azraith. Azraith and King are trading punches once more, and Azraith comes out on the high end. Az has King backed into the corner, but King sees Trey going to the top rope! King shouts out at Corazon, who’s eyes open wide, as Trey comes off with the Trey50 Splash! Corazon rolls out of the way! Trey hits canvas, and immediately is back up to his feet, clutching his stomach. Corazon gets to his feet and DROPS Trey! ACT OF INHUMANITY. Both men are down!
Eryk Masters: Good LORD. Trey commits himself with the Trey50 Splash, a move he usually saves as a punctuation mark!
Other Guy: If he’s still conscious, I expect he’s regretting that decision right now. Corazon, on the other hand, is breathing very heavily, but he’s definitely conscious.
Eryk Masters: King is taking a BEATING in the corner.
Tony Lorenzo has all but given up on order, at this point, allowing these four to go about their business. Azraith pulls King away from the turnbuckle, and nails him in the face one more time. Azraith doubles King over, and pulls him up over his head, attempting a powerbomb! King sits on Azraith’s shoulders, and throws desperate punches into the face of the World Champion! Azraith drops King to his feet! King turns Azraith around, and Az gets DECIMATED by the REALITY CHECK from Corazon! Az is staggered, and turns around right back into King, who FINALLY brings him down with the DEALBREAKER!
Trey breaks the pin up!
Eryk Masters: I thought FOR SURE that that was it. When did Corazon add the Reality Check!?
Other Guy: It makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? He takes the Real Deal out, and punctuates it by adapting one of his finishing maneuvers!
Eryk Masters: Seems like King and Corazon both just love taking moves from the guy, to me!
Corazon stalks towards Trey, who sees this coming. Trey lays into Corazon, hitting him with a few right hands. Then he whips Corazon into the ropes, and on the rebound, hits him HARD with a right hand, staggering him! Corazon gets hit with a boot to the midsection and is doubled over! Trey wastes no time hooking him with a double underhook and dropping him with the DAWN OF A NEW ERA! Corazon’s down! Azraith’s down! King and Trey are up! They meet in the middle of the ring! Trey and King begin trading lefts and rights, but King is getting the upper hand! King nails a BIG right that sends Trey reeling back to the top turnbuckle! The crowd is chanting for the Willenium!
Other Guy: What a flurry of events!
Eryk Masters: My heart peed for Trey right there, dude. Peed all over its little heart pants.
Other Guy: That’s a little awkward, Eryk.
Corazon’s back to his feet now, and notes Azraith still down. He sees King working on Trey against the top turnbuckle. King turns and sees his partner back to his feet. He nails Trey with another vicious right hand, and then drops to all fours. Corazon runs from the other corner, and catapults off of King, NAILING Trey with the Act of Defiance! Trey crumbles over King! The crowd is immediately gutted, and begin booing, while half start to chant for Azraith, who’s getting to his feet!
Eryk Masters: It’s starting to look really, really bad, for Azraith and Trey.
Other Guy: To be quite honest, I’m surprised they’ve made it this far. They’ve put on an incredible showing here tonight.
Eryk Masters: Well, it’s not over yet, OG!
Corazon breaks from his position first, and rushes at Azraith, who nails him with a right hand and sends him to his knees! King follows him and meets the same conclusion, staggered and down to the mat! Corazon’s back up, but Azraith gives him no time to recover, as he grabs him with a left hand, and drives him into his knee, with THE PRESENCE! He hangs onto Corazon, and hooks his arms, pulling him up for what looks like a powerbomb, but Az abruptly sits out, and DRIVES CORAZON’S HEAD INTO THE MAT WITH THE EXTINCTION!
Eryk Masters: CORAZON IS INHUMANLY UNCONSCIOUS!
Other Guy: My GOD, Eryk. Did you HEAR the impact?
THRE – NO.
King clips Azraith in the head, breaking the count! Az and King get to their feet, King’s a little quicker, and catches Azraith with ANOTHER DEALBREAKER!
Suddenly, the fans in attendance are buzzing as out from the back comes JESTER SMILES! He walks down to the ringside area slowly as King stops what he’s doing, turning to stare at his old foe!
Eryk Masters: I guess Jester Smiles is here to show the world what a hero truly is!
Suddenly, KILGORE STOCHANSKY rushes the ring and pushes past Jester, but Tony Lorenzo gets in his face to force him away! King continues to glare silently at Jester, who is stalking King outside the ring. He slowly climbs the ring steps, King staring his old foe down hard. Slowly, Azraith begins to stir and Jester enters the ring! King steps back, his fists balled up. He turns to Kilgore, who has Lorenzo tied up in an argument. King slowly turns to Jester, who is helping Azraith up.
Other Guy: Why do I think things are gonna get much much worse now?
AZRAEL GOEREN emerges from the back. He stands at the entrance, watching the events unfolding. The fans are booing louder and louder as Jester sees Azrael at the entrance and then looks back to King. Azraith turns and looks at Jester, who looks back at him. Azraith nods, and Jester stares at him blank…until he finally nods back. The fans ERUPT as Azraith stands up without Jester’s help…and the two of them are SIDE…BY…SIDE.
Eryk Masters: YES! YES!!
Goeren looks somewhat concerned…until his concern cracks into a grin. Jester looks up to Goeren’s grinning face and then looks at King one final time…AND HE HOOKS AZRAITH UP IN A HALF NELSON…AND SUPLEXES HIM INTO THE LAST LAUGH.
Other Guy: WHAT!?!??
Eryk Masters: NO!!!
Jester slides from the ring as Kilgore does the same! Jester stares blankly at Azraith as the fans RIP into boos, hurling trash at Jester!
Eryk Masters: I can’t BELIEVE THIS!
Goeren applauds as Pestalance emerges from the back with him. The two of them walk slowly to the ringside area as Tony Lorenzo turns and sees King grinning at Azraith’s body. He turns to Lorenzo, who KNOWS something has happened, but knows he can do NOTHING about it. King slowly picks Azraith up and holds him steady. He holds his face to all the fans out there as he hooks it onto his shoulder. He points to the fans who continue to hurl trash at them and then slaps Azraith a few times in the face, trying to make sure he’s somewhat awake for this.
Donovan King: Hey Azraith…
The camera is close enough to hear him speak.
Donovan King: SHOOT Project is MINE.
King DROPS Azraith with ANOTHER DEALBREAKER. He lords of Azraith’s body as he slowly rolls it over, glaring at the fans as he does so!
Eryk Masters: Damn it…God fucking DAMN it…
Tony Lorenzo seems hesitant until he sees Azrael Goeren stepping into the ring, demanding he do his job. Lorenzo drops down and sighs…starting the count.
Kilgore takes Samantha’s microphone.
Kilgore Stochansky: YOUR WINNERS…DONOVAN KING AND ADRIAN CORAZON…AND OUR NEWEST MEMBER…JESTER…SMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILES!!
Jester steps into the ring, saying nothing to anyone as no music has yet to play. The scene is familiar. It is depressing and somber for the casual fan and SHOOT Soldier who has to see their World Champion down on the mat. King pops his neck as he helps Corazon to his feet. Trey Willett is slowly coming to, only to see the carnage around him. He sees everyone surrounding him and he closes his eyes, sighing.
Eryk Masters: This is is…even our self proclaimed Hero has walked away…DAMN IT.
Kilgore hands Jester an ASP and motions towards Trey and Azraith. Jester throws the weapon down, shoving Kilgore away from him.
Kilgore Stochansky: What the hell are you doing?!
Jester glares at Kilgore.
Jester Smiles: I don’t need that shit.
Jester takes deadly aim at Trey when the fans ERUPT into cheers!
Eryk Masters: IT’S…IT’S…THAT’S THOMAS MANCHESTER BLACK!!!
Other Guy: And Azraith’s friend KAJI SUGIMOTO!
Eryk Masters: AND DAN STEIN!!
Kaji, Stien, and Black storm the ring, weapons in hand! Quickly, the members of the Sovereign dive from the ring, leaving Azraith and Trey Willett unharmed! Black demands a microphone and points at the whole lot of them as they gather in the ring.
Thomas Manchester Black: Not so GOD DAMN tough when the odds is stacked a little more even, huh?!
The fans cheer LOUDLY.
Thomas Manchester Black: C’MON. I’m sure Kaji wouldn’t mind gettin’ his hands a little dirty with some traitorous blood!
The camera focuses in on Jester as Kaji glares at the lot of them as he continues to check on Azraith.
Thomas Manchester Black: Simply put…you cowards run when the going get tough…then you need to be made well aware…the tough? The tough gets GOING.
And me? Azraith? Trey? We might not see eye to eye, we might not have cool t-shirts an’ catchphrases an’ we damn sure ain’t gonna be winnin’ no tag titles together…
Black glares directly at King, Corazon, and Goeren now.
Thomas Manchester Black: But we WILL fight, kill, an’ DIE for what we believe in!
Eryk Masters: YES!! YES!! YES!!
Thomas Manchester Black: Now hit THIS man’s music!
“Propane Nightmares” by Pendulum kicks in, bringing the fans to their feet.
Other Guy: They’re not a faction, they’re not a fucking stable…those men in that ring? THAT IS THE SHOOT PROJECT!!
Trey Willett pulls himself up, looking Thomas Manchester Black up and down as he continues to eye The Sovereign down. Azrael Goeren motions for Donovan King and Adrian Corazon to back down and they slowly back up the ramp. Jester Smiles, Kilgore Stochansky, and Pestalance all glare down at Azraith DeMitri, Kaji Sugimoto, Trey Willett, and Thomas Manchester Black stand ready for war.
Eryk Masters: Tonight…we might’ve seen King and his cronies become a united front…we might have seen the Death of a Hero…but we ALSO saw a rallying cry!
Other Guy: If it’s a war Eddie E. wants, it’s a WAR Eddie E. is gonna GET, courtesy of the SHOOT Project and courtesy of those men in that ring tonight!
Eryk Masters: Thanks for watching, folks, and we’ll see you on Revolution!
The final shots of the night are of The Sovereign staring down The SHOOT Project’s Soldiers. The screen becomes monochromatic once again, the image slowing down to a halt. The last shot is of the assembled Soldiers, the Helmet banner waving high over their heads.