Atlas vs Chris Casino (No Holds Barred)
Team N.O.T.W. vs Kentucky Hellbillies vs LEGION (Tables Match)
Xristus & Pat Gordon Jr vs Order of Orochi
Andellion Moonwater vs Joshua Rapture (Dog Collar Chain)
The Rabble vs Sammy Devine & Cuzin Eddie (Tag Team Championship)
Kris Jacobson vs Jay Deschain
Abbey Graves vs Clancy King vs Anton Petrov (World Championship – No Disqualification)
CHRIS CASINO, NAPW legend, stands before us, all smiles with a microphone in hand. He’s in his ring gear and the new NAPW banner hangs behind him. A banner that ‘someone’ has defaced with a spray can. Damn vandals.
Chris Casino: So here we are kids, we’ve come to the point of no return. In a few moments, I’m going to shed light on the ugly death of the old NAPW. I’ll show all of you filthy Canadians what really went down all those years ago when at the height of it’s popularity, NAPW self destructed. Or did it?
Chris Casino: Terry Brandon, I hold you responsible for all of this. I used to have respect for you old man. But you became a shameless sell out to this new and vastly inferior NAPW. Now you and all your cronies get to see what happened all those years ago. Actually it’s a one-two punch for me tonight, kind of like old times. Not only do I get to embarrass this ‘new’ NAPW, BUT I get to end the career of Atlas. A man who had one simple job… and screwed it up because he loved the applause from the sheep.
Casino shakes his head.
Chris Casino: All of this, the true death of the old NAPW AND the destruction of Atlas will be laid at the feet of Terry Brandon, and I couldn’t be happier. So enjoy.
The screen flickers to old grainy security tape footage. The camera looks like it’s placed in a high corner of an office. A office that belongs to one“Wahoo” Bobby Winchell. He’s sitting at his desk and across from him… sits Chris Casino, circa 2010.
Bobby Winchell: I…I still don’t know about this.
Chris Casino:: Ugh. Come on Bobby. We’ve been over this and over this.
Winchell looks pensive as Casino smiles broadly, hands open; the latter infusing his voice with all the charm of the best snake-oil southern baptist salesman…
Chris Casino: Just think of it — Joey Malone, the TOP guy in NAPW! You and I both know that without… help… He’ll never be anything. And wrestling is all that Malone cares about.
Bobby Winchell: I know what my boy loves damn you. I don’t need someone like you to tell me what is best for Joey.
Chris Casino: You cashed my check Winchell, so actually I CAN tell you what is best for your kid. Hell, for the amount of money you now have, I can tell you any damn thing I want to. Like how, for example, my proposed booker has GREAT ideas for this place.
Bobby Winchell: I’m looked into this guy’s history and I’m not sure that he’s capable of…
Casino slams his hand down on the desk.
Chris Casino: Look, you either get with the program you I march out there and expose you for the greedy freak you are. I win either way. At least…At least with clownie, your boy will get his time in the spotlight. Your boy, Joey Malone, the #1 star of NAPW. And you? No one will ever know. Hell, you’re doing this out of a father’s love right?
Winchell looks down at his desk.
Chris Casino: I’ll take this as a ‘Yes.’ Now let me introduce you to the man who will take NAPW into the stratosphere… with YOUR son as its biggest star…
The door to the office opens. An eerie silence accompanies the… clown (?) who steps through. The clown is dressed in a patchwork suit, smeared makeup, and a black denim top hat.
Chris Casino: Now sign over the company to ZOUAVE here and let him work his, uh, magic.
Winchell signs some papers on his desk and shoves them over to ZOUAVE.
Bobby Winchell: … He’ll ruin this place.
Chris Casino: Probably. Hell, I’m betting on it. But he WON’T do it before your kid becomes the star you wanted him to be and I get what I always wanted.
Bobby Winchell: And what DO you get out of this Chris?
Chris Casino: Heh. I get to watch it all burn Bobby.
Casino glances up at the security camera and smiles.
Chris Casino: Oh hey, Bobby. If you could get the tapes from that camera I’d appreciate it. I’d hate it if people found out about our…Agreement, Might tarnish my image.
The footage ends.
Chris Casino — the true architect of the death of NAPW. The man behind ZOUAVE and his reign of destruction.
What a dick.
The camera cuts to the interior of the Polish Hall, panning the capacity crowd. Hundreds of NAPW faithful have crammed the hall tonight for one heck of a card. T-shirts of the fan favorites are everywhere, particularly ABBEY GRAVES, SAMMY DEVINE, KRIS JACOBSON, CUZIN EDDIE. The masses are not cheering, however, having watched — along with viewers at home on iPPV — the security camera footage of Casino, Winchell, and Zouave. An angry murmur carries through the crowd.
“WELL IT’S JUST LIKE THE OCEAN
UNDER THE MOON!!”
And. They. HATE. HIM.
A smirking Chris Casino struts through the curtain, wearing a brand new ring jacket over classic style long tights. He looks in great shape, never better. The tours of Japan have been good to him, but that’s Casino to a tee. All about him. No matter who else is impacted…
* * * * * * * * * *
In 2010, NAPW came under the control of a mysterious, enigmatic clown character named Zouave, whose absurd, dangerous promotional tactics and obscenely biased match-making drove fans away, decimating the roster and devaluing the company to the point where only a stroke of (literal) good fortune allowed the company to stage a “farewell tour.” It came out, later, that Zouave had a history of ruining promotions shortly after arriving, but he never took it so far as he did with NAPW, blackmailing owner “Wahoo” Bobby Winchell into giving him full and utter control. Zouave accomplished this goal by brainwashing Winchell’s son, loveable loser “Bad Boy” Joey Malone, and using Malone as a pawn.
Years later, Zouave’s ultimate motives remained unclear. Until moments ago. The revelation, never even hinted at before, that Chris Casino personally and specifically manipulated “Wahoo” Winchell into hiring the mad clown for the sole purpose of destroying NAPW from the inside out. And why? To satiate his own ego. Chris Casino, in his own mind, was persecuted, pushed aside and dismissed. And from this warped reality, he refused to allow New Alberta Pro to continue unless it fit *his* vision. A vision with himself at the center.
That leads everybody to tonight. After months of mysterious sneak attacks, Casino revealed himself as Atlas’ trainer, and that he had sent Dr. Frank and Atlas to NAPW with ONE MISSION — to once again destroy it from inside out. Instead, Ze Doctah and his prodigious charge refused, embracing the love of the people and turning to the side of the angels.
* * * * * * * * * *
Casino takes the ring, embracing, even revelling in the hate thrown his direction by five hundred people. He’s burned his last bridge. There is not even one giving Casino respect for his lengthy career in the business. Not after what they have learned.
Chris Casino — “The Future” — loves it, egging the fans on, cocky beyond all belief.
Backstage… we hear “Smooth” playing faintly and the dull roar of the crowd as ATLAS sits in the locker room amongst THE CAST, DEMO-MAN, MACCULLOCH, and DR. FRANK. Ze Doctah is glitter and gold, pumping the cast up.
Dr. Frank: And now, tonight, we will finally show Chris Casino that you don’t mess with ZE DOCTAH or ATLAS! Are you ready!
The cast cheers. Demo-Man and MacCulloch high-five and curse. Atlas suddenly stands, the sculpted adonis putting a hand on the shoulder of Dr. Frank. Ze Doctah shoots a quizzical look at his charge. Atlas shakes his head. And then…
“No. I must do this … alone.”
The cast gape in shock as Atlas utters the first words ever heard in NAPW. Dr. Frank is taken aback, but looks the young man in the eyes closely. He slowly nods, and signals to the cast to do as he says. Demo-Man and MacCulloch protest loudly, that Casino will have back-up, that he won’t wrestle fair, but Ze Doctah insists. The time has come, he says, for Atlas to become his own man.
Atlas looks around the room, and then out.
The camera switches back to the ring, where Chris Casino is watching on, laughing to himself. The fans (those who could hear over the booing) are chattering excitedly at the new development. And then, to no music, ATLAS strides through the entrance curtain to a THUNDEROUS ovation. Casino pouts at the powerful response. “The Creation” poses at the top of the ramp, displaying his powerfully, seemingly perfectly built body. He walks to the ring, focused and determined. Referee Martin Chan motions for Casino to stay back as Atlas enters the ring. Chan checks both men.
At the sound of the bell, Chris Casino takes center ring. The smirk never leaves his face as he meets Atlas nose-to-nose. Casino runs his mouth, ever-grinning to the stoic expression of Atlas, until SLAP. Casino with a brutal open-hand slap across the ear of Atlas. “The Creation” staggers back… and then scoops Casino’s legs. Before the veteran even knows what’s happening, the young Atlas is pummeling him with rights and lefts. Casino covers up but the match is No Holds Barred, and Chan isn’t planning to do much more than count the pin or check for a submission.
Casino rakes the eye and crawls away, pulling himself up to the ropes. He cracks his neck and chops the chest of Atlas. No “whoooo” chants ring out — the crowd is too angry. And these are no little lovetaps, Casino is opening up nasty red welts on the muscled chest of Atlas. Another, forcing Atlas into the corner. Irish whip out, Casino charges in after, Atlas up-and-over, runs across to the other turnbuckle and like lightning is on top! Casino turns around to see Atlas soaring through the air with the Hot Patootie diving crossbody! They crash and Atlas is quickly up. Casino gets to his feet and Atlas cinches the waist for a German suplex. His hands are locked. He rolls through for another German suplex. That’s not the end. A third german suplex connects and Casino frantically rolls to the outside to slow the momentum.
Atlas hasn’t waited this long to give Casino a time-out. “The Creation” slides out and grabs Casino, sending him into the ringpost. The smooth one slouches down, dazed. Atlas closes in and Casino suddenly grabs the man by the trunks! Atlas pitches forward and conks his head into the steel ringpost. Casino reaches under the ring and pulls out a kendo stick. And he has bad intentions for it.
Trying to shake the cobwebs loose, Atlas suddenly flinches and yells in pain as Casino blasts him across the back. Another shot, a series follow and then Casino places the kendo stick around the throat of Atlas, setting the man up for a side Russian leg sweep into the barricade! Casino spins the kendo stick and then mocks his opponent. “I taught you everything you know, you stupid bastard, but not everything *I* know.” Casino bundles Atlas into the ring. He waits for the young man to take his feet, taking practice swings. He tees up! Atlas ducks! European uppercut! Another! Another! Stiff uppercuts and Atlas hits the ropes — Casino destroys him with a kendo stick blast right in the face.
Casino covers, lazily, and only gets a one. He doesn’t care. Beating Atlas won’t be enough. Casino wants to embarrass the “Creation.” He wants to humiliate the cast, Demo-Man, MacCulloch, and Dr. Frank. He wants to break the hearts of the NAPW faithful. An irish whip sends Atlas to the ropes, Casino catches his former protegé with a sleeper hold. Atlas flails to take the ropes, but Casino locks it tight in the center of the ring.
He doesn’t hold it, however.
Casino with a Sleeper drop. Known to longtime NAPW fans by another name. The Nyquil Driver. The finishing move of one of Casino’s biggest rivals, the charismatic D!. The boos rain down as Casino covers Atlas, no leg hook. It gets two but Casino revels in his excrement, so to speak. He pulls Atlas up, and the ‘prodigal son’ is dazed. Casino measures his man and delivers a standing dropkick right to the mush. Atlas hits the canvas, prone. That’s not enough. Casino climbs to the top rope, posing for the fans like old times. He flies!
Flying elbow drop to the heart of Atlas!
The cover — one, two, shoulder up. Barely. Casino, for the first time, shows a hint of frustration. It’s wiped away in a cocky smoothing of the hair. Casino backs off, letting Atlas slowly take his feet. Casino loads up… Superkick! Somehow, Atlas saw it coming and ducks at the last second. Another German Suplex by Atlas to Chris Casino! Atlas’ turn to take the top rope. He flies off with a beautiful Frog Splash — shades of the man who taught it to him, Casino himself! Atlas at last makes a cover. He gets a two count… and quickly transitions into the ATLAS CHOKE! Triangle Choke applied, Casino thrashing in pain, madly trying to make the ropes. He does… but Chan doesn’t force a break. The match is No Holds Barred, he’s letting these two destroy one another as they see fit. Casino, however, manages to tumble to the outside…
Atlas holds ON.
Casino flailing, but now Chan has to tell Atlas a submission will not count unless it is inside the ring. This forces Atlas to break. It would satisfy him, momentarily, to have Casino tap out. But a hollow gesture if not a victory. An eyerake by Chris Casino keeps a surging Atlas at bay. Casino tries to walk it off, but Atlas suddenly charges, delivering a swinging neckbreaker on the concrete. Casino’s eyes bug out in pain, but Atlas has no sympathy, again bundling his former mentor into the ring. European uppercut. Roundhouse kick. Casino ducks, locks in a full nelson, and delivers a DRAGON SUPLEX.
Not just any Dragon Suplex. The LAST RESORT. The finisher of another NAPW legend, RAVAGER. Casino floats over and this time hooks the leg. One, two, and Atlas kicks out before three. Closer this time. Casino hoists his man up and delivers the BRAINBUSTER. Atlas flips out at the apex, right behind Casino. Another German Suplex, but Chris holds the top rope to block, straining against the deceptive power of the “Creation.” Atlas tries again, and then switches it up, attempting a rear naked choke. Casino’s “trick knee” acts up and he catches Atlas in the family jewels. Atlas stumbles back, and Casino hooks the arms. He sets the man into position for the BANKRUPT. Unprettier coming up — Atlas stands up! Casino flips off, landing on his feet, and bends Atlas backwards to deliver a jumping inverted DDT! Better known as the signature move of perhaps Casino’s greatest rival, the “DDT from the Green,” one of “LDK” Lloyd Rees’ favorite moves.
Casino looks down at Atlas. “Just remember, kid — I was better than THEM, and I will always be better than YOU.” He hits the top rope. “And here’s how it’s DONE.” FROG SPLASH.
Casino went for it, full-force, and ate shit on the canvas in the worst fashion. He stands up, arms holding his pained chest, and walks right into a sudden, violent roundhouse kick from Atlas. Casino goggles. “Check please.” And then the “Future” collapses onto the second rope. The crowd stand as one. Atlas has Casino in position. He nails the 619! Casino pops up, staggering backwards… and Atlas is on the top rope. Flying bulldog! The Time Warp connects. Atlas covers and the crowd chants along ONE, TWO, THREE!
Except Casino gets a shoulder up.
The crowd is stunned. Atlas sits up, eyes wide, blinking. What? That wasn’t enough? What next?
Slowly, uncertain of his next move, Atlas stands up. He pulls Casino up by the scruff. And then the forgotten kendo stick smashes into his face. Hands up, and Casino stands, suddenly fury and vindictive wrath. Arms hooked.
Chris Casino covers Atlas, who gave his all.
The pinfall is broken by Casino pulling Atlas’ shoulders up off the canvas. The crowd can’t believe it. Or perhaps they can, but how could this man stoop so low.
One more time, with feeling, Chris Casino surveys the entire Polish Hall. Site of many of his greatest matches. Any good-will the NAPW faithful had for him evaporated tonight. Casino fingers the fans, and pulls Atlas up…
… into the KOJI CLUTCH.
ATLAS DELIVERS “ROLLING THE HARD 7” TO CASINO. Out of nowhere! Casino is trapped in the submission, his OWN finishing maneuver! The student turning the tables on the teacher! Casino screams in pain, howling. Atlas wrenches back on the hold.
And Chris Casino taps out.
The. Crowd. EXPLODES.
From the back stream the cast, led by the proud ‘parents’ of Atlas, so to speak. MacCulloch, Demo-Man, Ze Doctah. The two wrestlers hoists Atlas on top of their shoulders. The Cast applaud wildly as the crowd — they roar.
And then, defeated, overwhelmed, submitted by his own move, Casino refuses to leave the ring. He gets to his feet and begins to scream, delirious in his loss, at the fans, at Atlas, at ze Doctah, at anybody and anything in his line of vision. And that brings out NAPW’s head of security — the “Murder City Devil” himself, Jake Phoenix.
Phoenix calmly removes his Oakleys and suggest Casino vacate the premises. Casino shakes his head and kicks the bottom rope. Phoenix shrugs, then grabs Chris’ ankles through the ropes. He pulls Casino to the floor. Demo-Man and MacCulloch leap out of the ring, and the three men grab limbs and literally carry a wild-eyed Casino, kicking and screaming, out of the building.
In the ring, Atlas finally allows himself to display emotion. He smiles in relief and pride. “The Time Warp” comes on the PA, and the Cast enthusiastically lead the NAPW faithful in the dance!
JACK JONES: … wow.
BILL HEWSON: You said it, Jack Attack. What an emotional rollercoaster Atlas has been on. Heck, we all have been on.
JACK JONES: I just… I can’t even comprehend that Chris Casino was behind the garbage that we went through four years ago.
BILL HEWSON: It will take some time to come to terms with, but ATLAS defeating Casino tonight certainly helps with the healing. Good evening wrestling fans, I’m Bill Hewsong alongside my broadcast partner Jack “Attack” Jones. We are LIVE on iPPV from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada for HOUSE OF CARDS! Still to come later tonight, a rematch from last month’s Canada Cup — the 2014 Canada Cup winner JAY DESCHAIN will square off with KRIS JACOBSON.
JACK JONES: Looking forward to that, and don’t forget about the Tag Team Championship on the line!
BILL HEWSON: Champions THE RABBLE defend against the unlikely, but deserving, duo of SAMMY DEVINE and CUZIN EDDIE. And in our main event, months of drama and physicality will come to a head! New NAPW World Champion ABBEY GRAVES will defend her title against CLANCY KING… and the “Soviet Slaughterhouse” ANTON PETROV! Right now, let’s go to Frank to introduce the next match!
The angry cowpunk of Hank III kicks up, and the fans boo. They know who’s coming through the curtain.
FRANK WARBURTON: The following contest is the THREE-WAY TAG TEAM TABLES MATCH for a shot at the Tag Team Championship! When a wrestler is put through a table, they will be eliminated! Both team members must go through tables, until only one team remains! Introducing first, at a total combined weight of SIX-HUNDRED AND TWENTY POUNDS… Bryan Marshall and John Mitchell, the KENTUCKY HELLBILLIES!
Marshall and Mitchell, two hosses indeed, hit the ring, sneering at the jeering fans.
“WE ARE! THE SOLDIERS! UNDER GOD’S COMMAND!”
The 1980s spandex metal sounds of Stryper hit the PA, and that brings out a pair who look like they just walked off a Sons of Anarchy shoot.
FRANK WARBURTON: Their opponents! First, at a total combined weight of four-hundred and sixty pounds… the team of Luke Graham and J.C. Chapman — TEAM NOT OF THIS WORLD!
Team N.O.T.W hit the ring, referee Stewie Lamoine gulping as he tries to keep chaos from busting loose.
BILL HEWSON: Team N.O.T.W. and the Kentucky Hellbillies have developed a heated rivalry here in NAPW, and we are now joined by a guest! One of NAPW’s most popular competitors — Welcome, Lardo! Good to see you tonight!
JACK JONES: Yeah, Lardo, good to — is that a six-foot meatball grinder?
The camera cuts to show Lardo, clad in an oversized (on HIM) bright yellow John Cena t-shirt. He somehow places the giant sub sandwich on the announce table to the disgust/delight of Jack Jones. Lardo takes a big chomp of sub before placing a headset on, grubby fingers smearing grease and dressing.
LARDO: *chomp* Thanks Bill *gulp* and Jack *om*. Say Jack *om* do you want a *glomp* bite?
JACK JONES: I — no?
BILL HEWSON: Well, nice to have you out here with us. And congratulations on your big victory last month over Bruce Caliber!
LARDO: Gee thanks *clomp* Billy!
FRANK WARBURTON: And finally, their opponents —
Frank pauses for the entrance music to begin, but instead he’s greeted with LIGHTS OUT.
JACK JONES: Welp, somebody’s going to die.
LARDO: Don’t *crunch* worry, I know where my sub *chew* is!
Masakre and Matanza are in the ring! Frank Warburton gets the heck out of Dodge as LEGION start swinging! Referee Lamoine calls for the bell to officially start things…
DING DING DING
BILL HEWSON: The lights weren’t out that long, where the heck did LEGION come from? Oh, what a shot there to John Mitchell!
JACK JONES: I don’t know, I don’t wanna know. All that I do know is that Masakre and Matanza are two masked mother—
BILL HEWSON: Shut your mouth!
JACK JONES: But I’m talkin’ ‘bout the masks!
Talk about the masks all you want, Jack Jones. Because Masakre and Matanza are more like an elemental force. Bryan Mitchell is sent over the top rope, shortly joined by his partner Marshall. Matanza with a no-hands diving plancha over the top rope onto the Hellbillies!! In the ring, Masakre suplexes Graham and Chapman all over the place, finally taking the smaller Chapman and belly-to-belly suplexing him OVER THE TOP ROPE TO THE FLOOR! But there are no pinfalls, so Masakre proceeds to kick Graham in the face and roll outside. On one end, Matanza starts throwing tables in the ring. Maskare does the same on the others.
BILL HEWSON: LEGION not wasting any time, going right for the hardware!
LARDO: Maybe I should *chow* find a safer *nom* place for my sammich *swallow* *slurp*.
Lardo takes a drink from his ridiculously sized 64 oz plastic slushie cup.
JACK JONES: … where the crap did THAT come from? OH HELL! MATANZA!
Matanza stuns Mitchell with a chop to the throat and rolls him back into the ring. Maskare is setting a table up in the middle of the ring. It’s set-up… and DESTROYED!! Matanza with a brutal inverted Death Valley Driver on Mitchell, amazing show of strength, sending the big Kentuckian threw a table. He’s eliminated! JC Chapman off the top rope — Masakre catches him! Matanza quickly props a table up, Masakre gorilla presses Chapman… TOTAL MASAKRE THROUGH THE TABLE!
LARDO: Talk about *slobber* table service, Jack *BURP* Attack!
JACK JONES: You hush! And this isn’t a match, it’s a slaughter!
Luke Graham charges in with a lariat, but Maskare ducks. Matanza with a clothesline to the back of Graham instead! German suplex! Matanza starts setting up another table as Masakre hooks Bryan Marshall’s arms, delivering a series of brutal headbutts to the trapped man. Grim Facade connects! Matanza with the MASS MATANZA on Luke Graham, and then rolls the “Hardcore Disciple” on top of the table. Masakre sets up Bryan Marshall, Matanza joins in. Double powerbomb — MARSHALL POWERBOMBED ONTO GRAHAM THROUGH THE TABLE! KASPLODE!
BILL HEWSON: For the love of — that’s IT.
FRANK WARBURTON: Here are your winners — LEGION!
JACK JONES: Your next Tag Team Champions, Hewson?
BILL HEWSON: Very well could be, whether they face The Rabble or Cuzin Eddie and Sammy Devine! We talk about dominating performances, but that was beyond the pale.
JACK JONES: And they beat four big, strong wrestlers — like *that*.
BILL HEWSON: Unbelievable, Jack Attack. LEGION are an elemental force!
LARDO: S’long as they *chow* come near my hoagie. *OM NOM NOM*
JACK JONES: … that match was maybe FIVE MINUTES LONG. HOW DID YOU FINISH THAT WHOLE THING?
BILL HEWSON: Lardo is a man of many talents, Jack Jones! Many of them disgusting, but talents nonetheless…
JACK JONES: THERE’S NOTHING LEFT!
BILL HEWSON: LEGION victorious here tonight — thank you for your, uh, insightful commentary, Lardo!
Matanza seems to be talking a mesmerized Masakre down, as the pulverizing pair stand amidst the bodies and splinters of their handiwork. The fans are booing, but also…
JACK JONES: … still don’t know what I saw that night.
BILL HEWSON: I’m pretty sure it was a police helicopter.
JACK JONES: Oh… that actually makes a lot more sense than a flying saucer.
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, the following TAG TEAM match is scheduled for ONE FALL.
“Ningen Gari” blasts over the speakers, and a cloud of smoke bellows from the curtains.
FRANK WARBURTON: Introducing first, at a combined weight of FIVE HUNDRED and EIGHT pounds. VIPER TOKARA! PYTHON! The ORDER of OOOOOROCHI!
The ORDER OF OROCHI emerge from the curtains to boos from the crowd – VIPER TOKARA is seated up on PYTHON’s shoulders, arms outstretched, hissing at fans. Python walks them deliberately down to the ring.
JACK JONES: I tell you, Hewson, not only are these two creepy as hell, but they’re a force to be reckoned with in the ring.
BILL HEWSON: Between the two of them, they’ve left Xristus beaten and broken for months. Tonight – one way or the other – I expect we’re going to see an ending to this war between the Order of the Warrior Monk.
Viper hops off Python’s shoulder onto the apron, then the monster climbs up after him. The two hit the ring and pose for the booing crowd, feeding off their hate.
“God’s Gonna Cut You Down” and the Man in Black himself turn the boos into cheers.
FRANK WARBURTON: And their opponents… introducing first, weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and EIGHTY FIVE pounds. From the CITY OF ANGELS! He is the Warrior Monk… XRRRRISTUSSSSS!
XRISTUS steps out onto the stage, looking grim and focused as ever.
BILL HEWSON: No numbers games! No sneak attacks! Tonight, Xristus evens the odds against the Order of Orochi…
He points into the ring at the snakes, who goad him to come join them – but hangs back for a moment as his music fades and is replaced by the Dropkick Murphys and “Heroes From Our Past!” Big pop!
FRANK WARBURTON: And his TAG TEAM partner… weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and FORTY FIVE pounds. From BOSTON, Massachusetts. He is the INSTANT LEGEND… PAT! GORDON! JUUUUNIORRRRRR!
PAT GORDON JR. surges from the back, and he and Xristus RUSH THE RING!
JACK JONES: Oh, boy! Here we go!
Referee Martin Chan is calling for the bell even as Xristus and PGJR slide into the ring, and all four men just start clobbering each other to a huge cheer from the crowd! Xristus lays into the huge Python while Gordon and Viper exchange blows.
BILL HEWSON: It’s a war in the ring! The referee needs to get some control, here!
Pat Gordon Jr. manages to drive Viper Tokara to the ropes, and then gives him a lariat that sends both of them over the top to ringside. Tokara quickly starts scrambling away toward his corner. That leaves Xristus and Python in the ring, and apparently as the legal men.
JACK JONES: Xristus is usually the big man in the ring… but Python is a BEAST, Hewson!
Indeed, Python has gained the upper hand by measure of being just a monster. He’s pushes Xristus back into a neutral corner, RIPS open Xristus’ white tactical vest, and then unloads a HUGE open palm smack right on the Warrior Monk’s exposed chest with a roar! Xristus winces and clutches at the spot… but Python catches him, roughly pushes him back into the corner, and unloads a SECOND big slap across the chest. Xristus howls in pain.
BILL HEWSON: It’s an unusual sight to see XRISTUS being manhandled!
Python growls and grabs Xristus by a handful of hair, pulling him to the middle of the ring. He scoops the Warrior Monk up… and a big Sidewalk Slam shakes the ring. The giant gives a satisfied grunt and Viper Tokara applauds and shouts something at him in Japanese. Pat Gordon Jr. is calling for Xristus to get back into it, stomping his foot on the apron. Python pulls a woozy looking Xristus back to his feet, sets him up… Powerbomb… NO! Biiiiig back body drop counter! Python crashes down with a big cheer from the crowd!
JACK JONES: The big man is off his feet!
Xristus is back on his feet quickly and goes to rebound off the ropes. Python scrambles to get back on his feet, only to get a dropkick to the side of his head! He reels across the ring, arms flailing to another cheer from the crowd. The monster reaches up and grabs the ropes, pulling himself up, turns into a toe kick from Xristus… hooks the head…
BILL HEWSON: What?
JACK JONES: Impossible.
With a ROAR, and obvious strain, Xristus HAULS PYTHON UP… and STALLS, stepping toward the middle of the ring with difficulty. There’s a GASP from the crowd…. SUPLEX in the middle of the ring! HUGE POP!
BILL HEWSON: GOOD LORD! What POWER!
Viper Tokara is LOSING HIS MIND in his corner, unable to comprehend what just happened. Xristus actually has to take a moment before he can muster the strength to roll over and hook Python’s leg!
Only two, and Python powers out. Xristus looks spent, and reaches over to tag in Pat Gordon Jr. to a cheer from the crowd. As PGJR climbs into the ring, Python rolls to his corner and tags in Viper Tokara. Viper flips over the top rope and starts circling Gordon menacingly, hissing at him. After a moment, the pair lock up mid-ring. They jockey for leverage for a moment, then Gordon gets the upper hand, taking hold of Viper’s left arm and twisting it around by the wrist… BOOM! Shot to the arm! And another! And ANOTHER!
BILL HEWSON: Gordon calls that the Boston Charlie Horse!
Viper cries out and drops to one knee as Gordon hits a fourth shot on the arm, then roughly hauls Tokara back up and whips him to the ropes. Viper rebounds, gets caught… big POWERSLAM in the ring to a cheer from the fans! Gordon pins! 1! Just one and Viper kicks out. Both men move to quickly retake their feet, Tokara shaking his arm. He glances back at Gordon, hits the ropes for a rebound… but PGJR catches him! Tilt-a-whirl… BRUIN BREAKER! Viper crashes back to the ring, and Gordon with another pin! 1! 2! Two this time, but another kickout. Python moves to storm the ring, but Martin Chan steps over and warns him back as Gordon gets back to his feet. He pulls Viper back up…
And is blasted in the face with a mist of green haze! Boo!
BILL HEWSON: Right in the eyes of Pat Gordon Jr! Even when the odds are even, you can’t trust a snake to play fair!
JACK JONES: If the ref doesn’t see it, Hewson, it’s perfectly fair!
Gordon staggers around, rubbing at his face. Martin Chan turns back around in time to see Viper grab PGJR from behind in a Cobra Clutch… and just turns into a suplex without even maintaining the hold. Gordon crashes to the ring with a yell, and Viper leaps into his corner to tag in Python. Python climbs into the ring with a growl as PGJR crawls… to the WRONG corner… looking for a tag. Xristus shouts at him, trying to direct him, and reaching out for the tag.
JACK JONES: Your partner is in the other direction genius!
BILL HEWSON: Gordon was just BLINDED by Viper Tokara, Jack Attack. He doesn’t know which way is UP.
Just as Gordon gets oriented in the ring, Python catches him, and hoists him up into the Constrictor! Gordon yells in pain as the big man SQUEEZES him, and reaches to the ropes… but Python pulls him back toward the middle of the ring. Xristus starts clapping and stomping, working up the crowd, who start chanting “P-G-J! P-G-J! P-G-J!” Gordon starts getting fired up, gives a shout… and delivers an IRISH KISS right in Python’s masked face! The big man staggers back, but doesn’t release the hold, so Gordon delivers a second! This time, Python drops him, reeling backward! Gordon drops to the the middle of the ring, wincing and clutching at his ribs as Viper tags himself in, climbs onto Python’s shoulders…
DIVING DOUBLE KNEE DROP!
PGJR convulses in the ring. Viper *could* pin him… but he backs off, hissing. Gordon slowly rises to one knee – and Tokara comes off the ropes with a Shining Wizard that flattens the Instant Legend! NOW he hooks the leg. 1! 2! Kickout at two to a big cheer from the crowd!
BILL HEWSON: Pat Gordon Jr. isn’t out of this yet, Jack Attack!
Viper hisses and pulls a woozy looking Gordon back up, takes his arm, and yanks him to a neutral corner. He then hops up the ringpost, and begins tightrope walking the ropes… but Gordon yanks him down! Tokara lands on his feet in front of PGJR … belly-to-belly suplex! Viper skips across the canvas as Gordon lays there breathing heavily! The fans and Xristus start clapping and stomping away, urging Gordon onward. Viper rolls to the ropes and pulls himself up. Gordon, painfully, slowly, starts crawling toward Xristus’ extended hand… Viper catches his foot! PGJR tries to pull away, juuuuuuust out of the Warrior Monk’s reach, but Tokara shakes his head, holding tight… so Gordon hops up and kicks him away…
… and slaps Xristus’ hand!
JACK JONES: HOT TAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAG!
Xristus storms the ring like a steamroller, with a Flying Shoulder Tackle that flattens Viper! Python hits the ring with a roar, looking for a running lariat, but Xristus ducks it! The two men hit opposite ropes, rebound – and Xristus SPEARS the ever-loving hell out of the giant, sending him crashing to the mat! Huge cheer from the crowd! Python starts rolling out of the ring as Viper staggers back to his feet… and is sent crashing back down by a Scissors Kick from the Warrior Monk! Xristus is fired up! He roars with the crowd, then turns and goes to pull up Viper Tokara… but Python reaches in and pulls his fellow cultist to safety outside the ring!
JACK JONES: I don’t usually credit Python with smarts, Hewson – but that was a smart move. The Order needs to slow things down before Xristus runs away with things!
BILL HEWSON: Then they need to run a LOT farther than ringside! That big man CAN FLY!
As Python helps Viper back up, Xristus hits the ropes for momentum…
SUICIDE DIVE THROUGH THE ROPES!
The crowd pops as the Order of Orochi is flattened at ringside! Xristus scrambles to his feet and grabs Viper out of the tangled heap, rolling him back into the ring, then climbs up on the apron… but looks down at the prone Python at ringside.
GUILLOTINE LEG DROP OFF THE APRON!
Python’s limbs spasm once, but the giant is down! In the ring, Tokara has staggered back to his feet, but Pat Gordon Junior is back in the ring! The crowd is on it’s feet as he spins the snake around…
BILL HEWSON: SNAAAAAAAAAAKE!
The crowd starts SCREAMING as OUJA THE SERPENT KING emerges from beneath the ring, holding the Eye of Orochi! He slithers into the ring, holding the talisman up and cackling evilly! Both Pat Gordon Jr. and referee Martin Chan stop dead, mesmerized by it’s evil power, giving Viper Tokara a chance to stagger away from Gordon.
BILL HEWSON: But he’s gone! Ouja the Serpent King ran off to another promotion in the States rather than face Xristus man-to-man!
JACK JONES: Well it looks like he’s come back to finish things off, Hewson!
Ouja quickly directs Viper to finish Pat Gordon Jr., and Tokara nods, going to set up the Instant Legend for his deadly Kamikorosu… but before he can hit it he shouts something in Japanese and points behind the Serpent King.
BILL HEWSON: GOLGOTHA!
Ouja is laid OUT in the ring to a huge cheer from the fans! Martin Chan and Gordon both blink and stagger a bit, freed from his sinister powers! Viper looks like he might to to run for it, but Xristus closes this distance before he can get away and catches him from behind, then whips him toward Gordon. Pat Gordon Jr. catches the snake cultist…
SATURDAY MORNING HANGOVER!
JACK JONES: He’s killed Viper! Call the cops!
Gordon grabs a limp Ouja by the arm, drapes him over Viper Tokara, points at them, then rushes over and pops Python on the chops as the big monster tries to climb up on the apron – sending him crashing back to ringside! Xristus leaps on top of the two fallen snake cultists!
FRANK WARBURTON: Here are your winners… PAT! GORDON! JUNIOR! And XRIIIIIIISTUSSSSSS!
The fans are going wild as “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” hits the speakers again. PGJR takes Xristus hand and raises it in triumph as Python pulls Viper and Ouja from the ring.
BILL HEWSON: At long last, Xristus has become the St. Patrick of NAPW – driving away the snakes!
JACK JONES: It pays to have powerful friends, Hewson. Xristus can thank Pat Gordon Jr. for his victory tonight.
BILL HEWSON: Help, or no, Xristus has earned a definitive victory against a hated foe tonight, Jack Jones. And Pat Gordon Jr. has given these NAPW fans a taste of what’s to come!
JACK JONES: Well, that was a heckuva show Hewson. I’ll see you at Rosie’s next weekend, same time as usual?
BILL HEWSON: Sit down, Jack, we’re not even halfway through the show.
JACK JONES: … What?
BILL HEWSON: Uh, we’ve only seen three matches?
JACK JONES: So you’re telling me… that after we learn Chris Casino was ultimately responsible for NAPW’s closure several years ago, and originally hired Dr. Frank and Atlas to torch this next go-round, and finally received the comeuppance of all comeuppances, and THEN we saw Masakre and Matanza explode approximately eighty-seven tables destroying Team NOTW and the Kentucky Hellbillies, and AFTER THAT we saw a religious secret agent from an ancient order team with “Boston Strong” to defeat an even ANCIENTER order full of snake men… there’s more to come?
BILL HEWSON: Yes. And “ancienter” is not a word.
JACK JONES: Man, this new NAPW is something else!
“You can’t hiiiiide
You can’t hiiiide
You can’t hiiiide
Because you don’t know how…”
The lights lower and the slow, calmly haunting vocals of Patty Griffin are somehow met with equal parts of anger and disgust. The fans boo heavily as Joshua Rapture walks backwards through the curtain, arms outstretched in a crucifix pose. His head is tilted backwards, eyes half-closed in an expression of, well, rapture…
FRANK WARBURTON: The following is the DOG COLLAR CHAIN MATCH. The only way to win is to pin your opponent or make them submit. Introducing first… from Sweetwater, Texas. Weighing in at two-hundred and fifteen-pounds, he is “The Leader of the New Dawn” … JOSHUA RAPTURE.
Rapture takes his time to the ring. He stops to lock eyes with the occasional fan giving him the bird or shouting in his face, but otherwise seems unmoved by the NAPW faithful’s vivid emotional response. Actually, he’s GIVING the fans something? A card, or a pamphlet… He makes sure to hand one to Jack Jones.
BILL HEWSON: What is that, Jack Attack?
JACK JONES: A recruiting pamphlet to the New Dawn health facility! With a 15% coupon for your first five visits! Talk about a deal!
BILL HEWSON: Rapture is proselytizing? Now? He is a monster.
He no doubt incites a lot of hatred, this man Rapture. The New Dawn leader steps into the ring, blessing the jeering fans. Referee Morgan Smythe has the steel chain, attached to two studded leather dog collars, in her hands. Rapture kneels down and prostrates himself before who knows what deity, centre ring.
“I’M JUST A SOUL WHOSE INTENTIONS ARE GOOD
PLEASE DON’T LET ME BE MISUNDERSTOOD!”
The fans have something to cheer for now, as Andellion Moonwater steps through the curtain!
FRANK WARBURTON: And his opponent! From Crystalwood City… weighing in at one-hundred and eighty-eight pounds, he is the Prince and uncrowned King of Crystalwood … ANDELLION MOONWATER!
The fans cheer, but Moonwater is weighed down by dark path that has led to this, this climactic showdown with Joshua Rapture. The fur on the top of his head is uneven where Rapture scalped him several months ago; he still shows the scars from Rapture’s sadism within the Battlebowl cage. Moonwater steps into the ring, almost apprehensively…
BILL HEWSON: And at last, it comes to this. For six months now Joshua Rapture has tormented, tortured, abused Andellion Moonwater at every turn. It all began at CORONATION in November, when Moonwater defeated Rapture fair-and-square — and Rapture has been obsessed ever since. Both men took part in Battlebowl, Rapture eliminating Moonwater from the contest after utilizing barbed wire!
JACK JONES: He scarred both men that day, himself included.
BILL HEWSON: The “Leader of the New Dawn” took a RAIL SPIKE to Moonwater back in February — he scalped the Otter prince! And sickest of all, at the Canada Cup just last month, Rapture attempted to HANG Moonwater over the top rope with that very same collar and chain. And all in the name of… somehow SAVING Andellion Moonwater!
JACK JONES: Ordinarily I’d side with the guy saying “don’t listen to these humanoids,” but I’m not Rapture is going about this “saving” bit the right way…
BILL HEWSON: These two will be connected at the neck, chained together until we have a victor. There is no disqualification, no count-out. We all know the lengths Joshua Rapture will go to, Jack Attack… we don’t know what Andellion Moonwater is prepared to do tonight to finally end this war!
JACK JONES: I don’t think MOONWATER has any IDEA what’s about to happen, Hewson — or any stomach for what it will take to end it!
Rapture drops to his knees, arms wide and outstretched. Senior referee Morgan Smythe secures the collar around his neck and then, unsettled, quickly gets away from the smiling Rapture. She cinches the other end around Moonwater’s furry neck. The close shot shows his cheek twitching. Smythe tests the length of chain. Satisfied with the violent connection, she calls for the bell.
DING DING DING
The bell rings. Joshua Rapture doesn’t move. His kneeling continues, back straight, arms outstretched. He looks directly into the beady eyes of Andellion Moonwater, a wide smile on his face. “Come, Moonwater. Come and fulfill your destiny young prince.” Moonwater takes a half-step forward, uncertain what to do. The crowd is booing, but some of the fans — they seem freaked out. Rapture’s eyes shine. “I know who you are… You are your grandfather’s true heir, Prince… I know you…”
Moonwater reacts violently to the mention of his bloodthirsty ancestor. Rapture’s grin suddenly turns wicked. “DO UNTO OTHERS… ANDY… AS YOUR GRANDFATHER DID TO ALL THOSE WHO —*”
It’s too much for Moonwater to bear. With a shrill scream he charges Rapture with the AONYX KICK. That quickly. Rapture, still smiling, crashes to the canvas. Andellion Moonwater grabs a length of chain in his hands, warring with himself… and he brings the chain down across Rapture’s back. The cultist crawls away, but Moonwater lashes his bare back again and again, leaving angry, violent red welts. The crowd cheers but are growing uncomfortable until Moonwater falls down from the force of his furious lashes. Rapture crawls to a corner and rests his head on the bottom turnbuckle. The outside hand-held camera gets a good shot of his blistering back as Rapture mutters praise and thanks.
JACK JONES: Um, holy hell?
BILL HEWSON: Andellion Moonwater is a fan-favorite, Jack Attack. He stands for honor, compassion, fair play… but Joshua Rapture may have broken him. Will the young Otter Prince lose his soul to gain a victory here tonight?
It may be, and Moonwater seems almost shocked at the violence he dished out. He drops the chain like it’s a hot iron, staring at his hands. Moonwater meets Rapture’s eyes — HOCK. Rapture hocks a disgusting loogie into the fur of the Prince. Moonwater snaps! Running double knee to the face of Rapture in the corner! Moonwater with a series of stomps, then he hoists Rapture up. Back suplex — Rapture holds onto the top rope to block! …
So Moonwater drops him GROIN FIRST onto the top rope! That finally wipes the smile off of Rapture’s face, now his lips are shaped in an “O” of pain. Moonwater shakes the top rope! The fans love it as Rapture goes for a brutal horsie ride before toppling off towards the outside. He lands on the apron. Moonwater pulls on the chain!
JACK JONES: He’s going to hang Rapture, that sick bastard!
BILL HEWSON: Andellion Moonwater has not forgotten what Rapture did to him last month, and probably never will!
But Rapture begs. He pleads with Moonwater, begs him, do not do this THING. Moonwater, again, a conflicted expression on his face. The fans are split, some in favor of the heinous act, some screaming “don’t do it Prince!” Rapture signs the cross, shaking his head, begging… so Moonwater dropkicks the legs of Rapture out, sending the New Dawn leader to the floor! Moonwater looks to the other ropes and runs… he can’t make it! The chain snaps him back! The Prince turns and gets enough steam anyway for a NO-HANDS SOMERSAULT PLANCHA OVER THE TOP ROPE! Chain clatters on the concrete as both men are down on the outside!
JACK JONES: And that’s exactly why these two are chained together, Andellion Moonwater just tried to run away from the match!
BILL HEWSON: Will you be serious?
Moonwater gets to his feet first, roaring in his tiny voice. The crowd is behind him after that exciting dive. The Prince turns his attention to the doubled-over opponent — Rapture with a two-handed clubbing blow, chain in hands! He nails the Prince! Boooooo. Rapture yanks the chain to pull Moonwater back to him… irish whip! Drop-down by Rapture and Moonwater hits the barricade and spills over into the front row! Rapture stands tall, chain in hands. He stalks Moonwater, the sound of chain links clinking his symphony of destruction. Moonwater is getting up, Rapture grabs him and repositions his man. The Prince held from behind and Rapture begins levelling forearm shots across Moonwater’s chest, barricade between them! The chain swings up and down! A series of sickening thuds erupts. Rapture finally relents and then nails a beautiful left hook that sends Moonwater flailing into the next few rows, the fans scattering.
Rapture calmly follows. He stands atop two chairs, over Moonwater, extending his arms to insane heat. Rapture bends down, swinging the chain menacingly, still PREACHING to Moonwater. Rapture drops down, gets on Rapture’s back and starts to viciously fish hook the Otter Prince by the mouth! He pulls as Moonwater screams! Referee Smythe is there, but all she can do is remind Rapture that the match must end inside the ring!
BILL HEWSON: This is growing increasingly uncomfortable with every moment, Jack Attack. Moonwater… I don’t think he had any real idea what he was signing up for tonight — honor and vengeance be damned. Joshua Rapture is a terrifying, sickening human being!
JACK JONES: Who are you to judge? Rapture got me a real deal on my well-being and fitness!
Rapture lets go of the fish hook… and wraps the chain around Moonwater’s neck! He has *almost* a camel clutch on but that would give more technique to the mugging than is appropriate. Moonwater’s fingers clutch at the cold links until Rapture relents. Kick to the ribs, just for the hell of it. Rapture roughly pulls Moonwater up and screams “MOVE.” He grabs the chain near Moonwater’s neck and sends the Prince crashing ungainfully into a row of chairs, scattering them all around.
JACK JONES: WATCH OUT!
BILL HEWSON: Uh… warning too late, Jack?
JACK JONES: I’m yelling to the concessions booth, I still haven’t picked up my hot pretzel tonight!
BILL HEWSON: … THIS IS NOT THE TIME OR PLACE. Moonwater’s very soul hangs in the balance!
Inappropriate or not, Jack Attack is correct. The battle has taken the group to where concession is set up inside the Polish Hall. Rapture takes a bottle of water from it as the cashiers bail. He spies a chair which is somehow still upright and sits down, quenching his thirst. Andellion Moonwater crawls towards Rapture. He will not die. Rapture calmly places a boot to Moonwater’s head and shoves the Prince away.
Moonwater keeps crawling.
Rapture kicks him away, harder.
Moonwater keeps crawling.
Rapture’s grin fades. He stands up and throws the empty water bottle at Moonwater. “I AM THE ONLY WATER YOU NEED, MOONWATER. I AM THE WATER OF LIFE. I WANT TO SAVE YOU. DRINK FROM ME, PRINCE. DRINK FROM ME AND NEVER BE THIRSTY AGAIN—*”
Moonwater has had ENOUGH! The Prince dives onto Rapture with furious furry fists of fury! The chain flails up and down, catching both men in the melee, but Moonwater does not care! He pounds on Rapture, who tries to cover up WHAM. Rapture with a knee to the balls! Moonwater groans, clutching his pearls. Rapture shakes the cobwebs loose and then grabs a handful of the Prince’s fur, dragging him back towards the ring. Rapture is angry now. He sets Moonwater into the barricade, LARIAT — Moonwater backdrops Rapture up and over! Moonwater leaps to the barricade, balances, and dives onto Rapture for a bulldog! Rapture holds on, catching his man by the legs, but Moonwater incredibly resets momentum into the Wheelbarrow bulldog, right on the concrete!
JACK JONES: That’s not a sound you ever want to hear!
BILL HEWSON: Skull meeting concrete — Moonwater trying to get back into this thing!
Moonwater hoists up Rapture, who goes to the eyes to break. The New Dawn leader stumbles the other way, trying desperately to get away from Moonwater — but the collar around his neck stops that! Moonwater pulls his opponent back, one tug at a time…. Rapture suddenly stops resisting and the Prince flies backwards from his own shifting momentum. Rapture rolls into the ring to try to get away, then back out the other side. He turns around —
MOONWATER DIVES *THROUGH* THE FIRST AND SECOND TURNBUCKLE PADS IN THE CORNER — INTO A TORNADO DDT ON RAPTURE!!
JACK JONES: Holy hell!
BILL HEWSON: Unbelievable agility, how did he possibly manage that? Especially with a chain!
JACK JONES: Otter magic? Look out Rapture!
Moonwater takes in the cheers, seemingly his old self. He bundles Rapture into the ring, throwing the chain after and then stepping in. Moonwater up to the top rope! Rapture stands! FLYING HURICANRANA! Rapture splays onto the bottom rope, chest-first. He’s in perfect position for the LONTRA KICK!! Moonwater swings! The kick — is ducked! Moonwater skids to the center of the ring, unable to overcome inertia. He turns to see Rapture charging with the chain held high! Moonwater ducks this time! Rapture hits the other ropes, falls through…
BILL HEWSON: That was almost IT, right there! Moonwater kicking out, somehow, someway!
JACK JONES: Yeah, but I don’t like his odds … Rapture isn’t stopping there!
Rapture immediately traps the arm of Moonwater, chain wrapped, and begins UNLOADING with elbow strikes! Moonwater is helpless as the point of the elbow rains down onto him! Smythe at last gets between, forcing Rapture off. There’s no DQ but she needs to protect the long-term health of the wrestlers. She checks on Moonwater, who looks poor.
The crowd screams.
Rapture has pulled the rail spike from his boot.
Rapture mildly shoves Smythe out of the way, drawing her ire, but she can’t get too close as Joshua holds the rail spike high. He jams it violently into the forehead of Andellion Moonwater, digging it in. Crimson life begins to flow from Moonwater’s head, soaking into his fur. The fans booing is renewed. Rapture takes a length of chain and holds it in his teeth, looking demonic with Moonwater’s blood on his hands. Smythe is begging him to get rid of the spike. Rapture notes her suggestion — and ignores it. He takes the chain and wraps it around Moonwater, then hoists his opponent up into the MARTYR’S BURDEN!
BILL HEWSON: Oh my God, submission hold applied — with that CHAIN wrapped around! Moonwater is bleeding profusely, son, think of your career — think of your life!
The fans are near weeping, they can’t bear to see this. Moonwater is weakly twitching, trying to escape, but… he seems to be going limp. Rapture screams “CHECK HIM!” to Smythe, who needs no prompting. She lifts an arm of Moonwater…
She checks again, hoping against hope…
But the arm falls.
The crowd turn, people embracing each other, realizing they have witnessed a horror, and the destruction of a good, true creature.
The arm faaaaallllsNO! NO! NO!
JACK JONES: WHAT THE WHAT?
BILL HEWSON: ANDELLION MOONWATER IS ALIVE!
Moonwater’s fists curl up, shaking! His positioning sucks, but he will not submit! He forces his will through every sinew of his body to prevent passing out! Rapture shakes his head in disbelief — and turns the hold into the GORY BOMB. Moonwater crashes the canvas, the air sucked out of the building. That’s it.
BILL HEWSON: It’s not over yet — I don’t know HOW THE HELL he did that, but it’s not over yet!
Nobody can… least of all Joshua Rapture. The leader of the New Dawn looks heavenward, searching for answers. He pulls Rapture up, the Otter Prince bloody, weakened, and drops him with an educated right hand. Rapture goes to the second rope, chain jangling. He looks up and then at Rapture, then delivers a BRUTAL diving knee drop. He picks Rapture up, going for his secondary finisher, the one that will end it forever.
REVERSED INTO A SITOUT FACEBUSTER!!
Rapture lays prone on his back, eyes open, blinking into the bright lights above the ring. Moonwater shakes his fist, trying to will himself back to his feet. He claws the canvas… and his fingers curl around the rail spike. Moonwater grabs it, taking a knee. He looks at it oddly. The fans see it, screaming for Moonwater to give Rapture a taste of his own medicine. Moonwater sees Rapture getting to his knees. The Prince raises the spike high. Rapture sees. Their eyes lock.
“Yes, yes, DO IT, DO IT… TAKE YOUR PLACE IN THE STARS, ANDELLION MOONWATER… TAKE OUR RIGHTFUL PLACE AS YOUR GRANDFATHER’S HEIR!”
Time freezes. Rapture’s wild-eyed smile. Moonwater holds the spike high. Fans with arms raised, chanting. Others averting their eyes, they can’t watch. Moonwater…
THROWS THE SPIKE AWAY.
BILL HEWSON: Andellion Moonwater WILL NOT lower himself to the level of Joshua Rapture!
Rapture blinks, mouth agape. Total disbelief. He snarls angrily at Moonwater and charges in, but Moonwater trips him with the length of chain! Rapture stumbles, keeps his balance — AONYNX KICK! Joshua Rapture lands on the second rope with his chest and arms, and here comes Andellion Moonwater… LONTRA KICK!! Rapture plows backwards, but it’s not done yet! Moonwater quickly scales to the top rope! He barely has enough length of chain! LUTRASAULT! COVER!
FRANK WARBURTON: Here is YOUR winner… PRINCE! ANDELLIONNNNN… MOOOOOOONWATERRRRR!
The fans go salmon as Moonwater collapses into himself! Smythe quickly unlocks the collar from his neck, freeing him — on every level. Trainers quickly pull a bloody and bruised Rapture out of the ring, taking the dazed man to the back.
BILL HEWSON: What an epic story, what a victory for Andellion Moonwater! He did not just defeat Joshua Rapture here tonight — he rejected Rapture’s twisted gospel of hate and revenge, and rejected Rapture’s intent to crush Moonwater’s sense of honor and justice!
JACK JONES: I truly did not think this kid — otter — whatever — had it in him to go toe-to-toe with Rapture in this match. No chance.
BILL HEWSON: Andellion Moonwater won tonight by NOT using that rail spike. He had every chance, every REASON to mete out justice an eye-for-an-eye, but he chose the high road. He chose the way of life and compassion, the way of Crystalwood! What a victory for the uncrowned King!
The fans are cheering, chanting, as the exhausted Moonwater finds strength to raise his arms in celebration. He looks lighter than he has in months. At last, Andellion Moonwater has exorcised his demon.
A demon named Joshua Rapture.
The ring crew have finally finished clearing the debris and mopping up the blood from the dog collar chain match. The fans are retaking their seats, buzzing from the action so far. Chris Casino — his ultimate defeat at the hands of Atlas. LEGION: dominant. The vanquishing of the Order of Orochi. Andellion Moonwater at last having vengeance on Joshua Rapture.
FRANK WARBURTON: At this time, please welcome the commissioner of New Alberta Pro Wrestling… TERRY BRANDON!
The fans applaud politely, curious as to why the Commissioner is in the ring. Brandon, clad in a tacky-yet-somehow-dapper suit, takes the mic.
Terry Brandon: First of all, I say, I want to take this time to thank the people who have once again made NAPW the best wrestling in Western Canada — you, the fans! Give yourselves a hand!
They do, but what’s the point here?
Terry Brandon: Now while NAPW has decided to start fresh, of course, there are some ‘classic’ moments we can’t forget! You saw one last month when the Jay Deschain was crowned the new Canada Cup victor (boos). In December, when Abbey Graves won Battlebowl (huge pop for the champ). Well, I say, well you better believe that we’re not done yet. It is my privilege to announce that in June NAPW will once again present to you a ‘marquee event.’ And it will be all about TAG TEAM wrestling…
The fans whisper. Tag teams wrestling in NAPW has a long and storied history, and there is ONE MATCH…
Terry Brandon: That’s right! In June it will be the return… of TAGSTRAVAGANZA!!
The crowd’s exultation at the official announcement shakes the arena. People stomp their feet, crow, cheer, wave their hands, all sorts of stuff that’s really, really camera-friendly. This was definitely one of the crowdshots that would be used in the hype reel for the upcoming megashow. The truck monkeys would need plenty of that for the b-reel when they began to put together commercials and hype-vid for individual matches.
Terry Brandon: Whaddaya think of THAT?! Tagstravaganza is BACK, the main event of the show will be the current Tag Team Champions-
Brandon turns, looking into the hardcam at the side of the ring.
Terry Brandon: That would currently be the Rabble. Ernst, Gustav and Greta…
He looks back to the crowd, a dazzling, photogenic grin on his lips, and holds a hand up.
Terry Brandon: Against whichever three teams manages to triumph against the odds, fight through all their competition, and enter the four-team TAGSTRAVAGANZA main event. The titles will be on the line! And one team will walk out that evening the champions and TAGSTRAVAGANZA winners — $10,000 richer, and walking out with the coveted BLUE JACKETS of tag team victory!
JACK JONES: Note how many times he’s saying the name of the event. That’s good name brand reestablishment, right there.
BILL HEWSON: What would you know about name brands, Jack Attack?
JACK JONES: I’m the king of — DRINK PEPSI NOW — subtle product placement, for one.
Terry Brandon: Now, one thing is for sure, the field is WIDE open. Will the A-Team manage to be the guys to beat the odds and take the night?
The crowd sure would like to see that.
Terry Brandon: Or how about LEGION? Masakre and Matanza are a force to be reckoned with! Or… will they be the CHAMPIONS going into the event?
And vice versa. The monstrous members of LEGION are not exactly on Santa’s Nice List.
Terry Brandon: Or how about the recent hire of the Phenomenons? They certainly could do well as a new tag team. Everything’s up in the air! TAGSTRAVAGANZA is certainly gonna shake things up around here, and-
The house lights go out, all in a flash. Come to think of it, the little red signs marked EXIT also go out. Everything is out, including the security lights, safety walkway lights…
Over in the bleachers, a guy with a chest-mounted basket of hot, salty nuts takes a header down the stairs, spilling peanuts all across the floor. Brandon, in the ring, taps on the microphone in futility.
The only flowing electricity left in the arena is that feeding the hungry TV cameras.
JACK JONES: …Did you forget to pay the electric bill, Bill?
BILL HEWSON: I don’t pay NAPW’s bills! I think we’ve got an electrical short somewhere around here!
And apparently commentary. But as the darkness looms, the house speakers kick to life. After a few moments of ear-rending feedback, funky guitar sounds echo from the amps. And then, full-on guitar chords. And when one says chords, one means “The dulcet tones as strummed out by Jimi Hendrix a half-century ago”. When that cat played, the guitar itself sang, brother.
“IF YOU COULD JUST… GET YOUR MIND TOGETHER
UH THEN COME ON ACROSS TO ME
WE’LL HOLD HANDS AND THEN WE’LL
WATCH THE SUNRISE
FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA”
As the song plays, multi-coloured spotlights flicker to life in the rafters of the arena, swirling and dancing, shucking and jiving around the audience. From the look on Brandon’s face, lit here by green and there by blue, yellowed and red, this was NOT part of the show’s overall plan.
Glitter falls from the rafters, hitting those spotlights and brilliantly shining like snowflakes against the moon, like raindrop against a cop car’s sirenlight.
“BUT FIRST, ARE YOU EXPERIENCED?
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN EXPERIENCED?
WEEEEEELL, I HAVE”
A single white spotlight hits a spot in the crowd. The rest of the lights die, leaving only the single pillar of illumination, shining right into the middle of the crowd. There, standing on his chair, is a man. He stood on the armrests of his arena seat wearing a white leather coat delicately decorated with gold vines trailing up his arms, and along the hemline, a pair of round, John Lennon-style sunglasses, and a pair of bright red trousers. Not exactly hip and with it.
But then, whoever this man with his thick moustache and his upward-inclined face is, he has a microphone. And therefore, he was Someone Worth Listening To.
This is a wrestling show, and anyone who had the power to speak at it is Someone.
Terry Brandon: Will someone cut his music?
Poor Terry Brandon hasn’t realized that his microphone wasn’t working. With the loss of control over the arena, the NAPW truck monkeys have lost control of who had a live mic. But the man in the sunglasses, with that huge, cat-canary grin, tilts his head slightly, and makes a delicate gesture to Terry Brandon.
Terry Brandon: I SAID, WILL SOMEONE CUT HIS MUSIC?!
The interrobang means he was serious, and so one of the boys in the back manages to cut the correct wire or hit the correct command line on the Windows ’98 PC that everything was operating off of. And the music cuts out, sharply.
And after a moment of oppressive silence, the man in the round sunglasses crosses his arms over his chest, and twice as loud, twice as funky, Jimi Hendrix continues to wail, as if he had never been interrupted. You don’t mess with the undisputed master of the guitar. The man in the round sunglasses continues to grin, as Terry Brandon levels a finger at him.
Terry Brandon: You don’t work here! I know EVERYONE under NAPW contract, and you aren’t one of them! So who are you, to hijack my show and try to mess with my big announcement?
???: Au contraire, mon frere. I can still smell that dryin’ ink in the air… I can still see the paper’s capillaries sucking the lampblack into the firm structure, solidifying it in the chaos and roil of this crazy little blue marble…
JACK JONES: I’ll have what he’s having.
BILL HEWSON: Who is this guy? I’ve never seen him before!
JACK JONES: Don’t recognize him.
BILL HEWSON: If YOU don’t know who he is, then he’s never laced up a pair of boots. What with your illegal gambling ring and all.
JACK JONES: Correct. How will I know the long odds if I don’t stay informed?
Terry Brandon: The newest hires for NAPW are the Phenomenons! I was at their contract signing just a few days ago! So whoever you are, sit down and watch the rest of the show!
The spotlight on the man begins to shift, slooooowly turning yellow. The music continues to blare right up until the man holds up one hand, his index and thumb finger delicately caressing one another, and he gives a sharp snap of the digits.
Then, silence rules.
???: I already called you wrong once, man. Don’t make me do it a second time. For you see, just a few short seconds ago, I was meeting with some very powerful, influential men who happen to hold controlling stakes in this company. And I was telling them the sweet music that they wanted to hear, the song of the spheres floating out in the inky black, the noises that would help them to make up their minds as to who ELSE could possibly join a professional wrestling company based out of little Canadia…
Pause for effect as the man in the round sunglasses bends his neck, inclining his gaze downward.
???: And make a difference.
He clenches a fist, bringing it to his chest.
???: I do not claim to be some superstar who’ll send NAPW skyrocketing in the pro wrestling business, or a demon who comes solely to bring this fine, feathered franchise to its knees. No, I am simply a man who has come in search of… challenge.
That spotlight slowly shifts through the color spectrum. After yellow comes a sweet, lime green. Mmm, mint julep colored. And on its merry way to a bright, vibrant shade of green, not this weak, pale shit.
???: I have crossed great oceans and timeless voids to be here. I’ve crawled across the chest of slumbering giants and dug my way through the grave soil of dead gods. And I’ve come, I’ve come to your House of Cards, Terry Brandon, to tell you not to fear and shake at the tread of my foot.
JACK JONES: I highly doubt that T-Brand was going to be quivering at this guy’s signing.
BILL HEWSON: T-Brand? I know you and Terry go way back, but — nevermind. There’s something odd about this man, though. I wouldn’t want to be the one across the ring from him, whoever he is.
???: I have simply come to NAPW to pluck the fans… Yes, each and every one of you people, you mortal, vibrant human beings… Right out of your chairs and cast you head over heels into the chaos of enlightenment. I will lead you down a NEW path.
???: And it begins at Tagstravaganza.
In the ring, Terry Brandon puts his hands on his hips. He’s been around long enough to know to let a wrestler get it out of their system.
Terry Brandon: Tagstravaganza is a “tag teams only” show. Who’s your partner, Chief?
In response, the man in the sunglasses only gives a broad, cheeky grin. From behind him, a formerly unseen presence rises. A woman, from the angle of her shoulders and the formidability of her chest. She steps to the side, almost even with the man standing on the armrests of his chair, even with his height advantage.
JACK JONES: What in God’s name is THAT?!
She is dressed all in white. A beautiful leather jacket of her own, a pair of white linen pants beneath… Oh, and the featureless white mask covering her entire face. A blonde ponytail pops out the back, but no features are drawn onto the mask.
Hence Jack Jones’ confusion as to the identity of the woman now standing behind the man wearing the round sunglasses.
???: My partner is Nobody. And I am Lambert Haniel, the Time Travelling, Intergalactic Lord of All Funk and Love. We are Those Who Would Inflict Ill.
As he slowly brings one hand up to his side, he looks out into the crowd. With his palm facing upward, Lambert gives a bright, dazzling, pearly white grin.
Lambert Haniel: Let the boys in the back know that they’re on notice. There will be two time periods, from here on out. Pre-injection of Funk and Class… And the time after I got here.
Lambert clenches his fist shut, and the Hendrix music began to blare once more. The spotlight has drifted over to the blue section of the spectrum, and gotten awfully dark in the last few moments. The light goes out, plunging everyone and everything back into darkness as Jimi, sweet Jimi, continues to shred that guitar like it owed him money.
After the song had crescendoed, the lights in the arena come back up, returning light and joy to the world. And Lambert Haniel and his companion Nobody… They are quite gone, despite the best attempts of NAPW security to get to the area to be able to question the man on how, why, what and who.
In the ring, Terry Brandon just hands the microphone off to a stagehand before climbing through the ropes and heads for the back. He isn’t going to play these sorts of games… not with two title matches and a heated rematch to still oversee tonight.
JACK JONES: And then, there I was! Caught red-handed with my pants down!
BILL HEWSON: That’s what you get for trying to steal a bottle of ketchup.
JACK JONES: I would have gotten away with it if my pants had pockets.
BILL HEWSON: Anyway, NAPW fans, if you’re just joining us on NAPW-online iPay-Per-View, you’re watching House of Cards! Quite a show we’ve had so far, isn’t that right, Jack Attack?
JACK JONES: Why are you paying for the show?
BILL HEWSON: What are you talking about?
JACK JONES: You said “I pay.” Why would you pay?
As Hewson shakes his head, the fans, as if on instinct, come to a low hush in anticipation of the next match. A few moments go by…. Then Flatts & Scruggs hit the speakers! The fans go crazy!
CUZIN EDDIE IS IN THE HOUSE! He bursts through the curtain and meets the roar of the fans with two hands way up high to show his appreciation! He half-runs, half-skips to ringside, slapping as many hands along the aisle as he can before he slides into the ring, pops up and throws his arms up!
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is scheduled for ONE FALL and is for the NAPW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP! Introducing the CHALLENGERS! First, making his way to the ring, from Steep Creek, Kentucky. Weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and SIXTY THREE POUNDS! CUZIN! EDDIE!
BILL HEWSON: Quite a competitor, that Cuzin Eddie! Standing up to the Kentucky Hellbillies all by himself, showing an impressive determination and heart that a lot of competitors can’t say that they’ve ever had!
JACK JONES: And tonight, he’s partnering Sammy Devine to challenge for the NAPW World Tag Team Championship! I can hardly wait!
Eddie’s music dies out, but the fans can’t stop cheering as PRINCE hits the speakers with “Baby I’m a Star!” SAMMY DEVINE hits the stage to another huge pop, carrying an American flag! He waves it around at the crowd!
FRANK WARBURTON: And introducing his partner! From Tulsa, Oklahoma! Weighing in at TWO HUNDRED TWENTY FIVE POUNDS! “THE STARMAKER!” SAMMY! DEVINE!
BILL HEWSON: Speaking of Sammy Devine, Eddie’s partner is here!
JACK JONES: Waving around an American flag, too! So.. WHY ARE THESE FANS CHEERING?
BILL HEWSON: The Edmonton fans have a real connection to the “Starmaker!” Devine has been on a warpath of late, picking up a big win against his rival ANTON PETROV at Canada Cup, knocking him out of the tournament!
JACK JONES: It ain’t that way! It was a fluke, I say!
BILL HEWSON: Say whatever you want, Jack Attack, because now he has a tag title shot against the Rabble!
JACK JONES: He hasn’t got a chance!
BILL HEWSON: Do you ever get tired of playing devil’s advocate?
JACK JONES: No!
Devine rolls up the flag and leaves it near the apron and climbs into the ring, touching fists with his partner, Cuzin Eddie!
The music just BARELY dies out and the fans begin to boo even BEFORE the Rabble’s music hits the PA system! “I Want Your Body” by Nymphomania hits and the fans try to drown it out with jeers as Ernst, Gustav and Greta hit the stage. Ernst and Gustav are carrying what appears to be “HMV Pure Rewards Card” championship belts, but most notably, the Rabble Rousers do not appear to be in attendance.
FRANK WARBURTON: And introducing their opponents! From Berlin, Germany! Weighing in at a total combined weight of SIX HUNDRED and ELEVEN POUNDS! THEY ARE THE NAPW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS! ERNST! GUSTAV! GRETA! THEEEEEE RAAAAAABBLE!
JACK JONES: They’re all alone?
BILL HEWSON: It would seem the Rabble’s funding has been cut off, Jack Attack!
The Rabble approach the ring, ignoring the heat coming from the fans non-stop. Ernst and Greta enter the ring, carrying the belts, Gustav remains at ringside!
BILL HEWSON: It looks like Ernst and Greta will be defending the titles this month! Due to a loophole in their contract, ANY three of the Rabble members can defend their titles! Very crafty to keep it secret until the last minute!
JACK JONES: I call it ingenious strategy, Hewson! It’s the strategy that made them the champs.
BILL HEWSON: I’m sure that’s not the only thing, Jack Attack, but there’s no denying that Devine and Eddie will need to keep their heads on a swivel to be able to stay in front of the Rabble!
Ernst and Greta hand off their belts to junior referee Stewie Lamoine, who holds them up for the challengers to see.
BILL HEWSON: Wait a minute, Stewie Lamoine is refereeing this match?
JACK JONES: This could spell trouble for the challengers, Hewson!
Cuzin Eddie is raring to go, so it looks like he’s gonna start things off, met in the ring by Greta! Devine and Ernst take their corners and referee Stewie Lamoine calls for the bell!
BILL HEWSON: Looks like Greta and Eddie will start this match off! And Eddie with a huge showing of respect has offered her a hand shake!
JACK JONES: I don’t know if that’s such a good idea, Eddie – SWEET KICK!
Greta smiles, takes Eddie’s outstretched hand, spins him around and a HEEL KICK RIGHT TO THE MUSH catches Eddie off guard! Eddie bounces off the mat and back to his feet holding his face. Greta just smirks as the crowd showers her with boos, Ernst applauding from the apron. Devine gives encouragement from the outside as Eddie gets back into the game.
BILL HEWSON: A dirty trick from the Rabble member, but nobody said we expected them to play respectfully.
We have a tie up! Greta slides between Eddie’s legs and sends a pair of feet into the back of his knees! Eddie stumbles, Greta back up with a KICK to the side of Eddie’s head and the crowd couldn’t help to shadow the echoing blow with a “OOOH.” Eddie, holding the side of his head is trying to find his feet as Greta is building momentum! Eddie is kneeling, Greta with a YAKUZA KICK, missing by the hair on Eddie’s chin as he just gets out of the way! Eddie with an opening, gets a right hand in, and an ELBOW SMASH – NO Greta out of the way just in time and tags out to Ernst! BOO! Eddie throws his hands up, “We was just gettin’ started!” Greta waves him off as Ernst climbs into the ring.
BILL HEWSON: Greta getting the hell out of dodge of that elbow, preventing Eddie from gaining any momentum!
JACK JONES: Top level tag teaming, right there! Reminds me of the time…
BILL HEWSON: Not now, Jack Attack, focus on the action.
Ernst calls for a tie up and Eddie is quick to oblige, shoving the bigger man into the vacant corner! Eddie with an ELBOW into Ernst, Lamoine quick with the break up, but Eddie is already out of there, sizes him up, CORNER SPLASH from Eddie and Ernst slumps to the mat! Greta shakes her head as Gustav pounds the mat, trying to rally his brother. Eddie isn’t ready to quit, grabbing Ernst from the ground and an IRISH WHIP into the corner where Devine is waiting for him! Eddie with another elbow to Ernst, and the tag to Devine! Eddie hooks Ernst up, and Devine with a swift kick to the midsection as Lamoine counts down the double team time. Now it’s Devine’s turn! Devine with a boot to Ernst as he gets up, hooks him up for the Starmaker! But Ernst still has gas in the tank as he BULL RUSHES Devine into the vacant corner! Ernst with shoulder thrusts in the corner as Lamoine’s count gets to four! Ernst is quick to release Devine just before five, but barely gives Devine enough time to clear his head! HIP TOSS out of the corner and Devine is up to a seated position, holding the small of his back! Ernst stalks Devine, gets a handful of hair and hooks him up for a BACKBREAKER! Cover gets only a one and a half count!
BILL HEWSON: Ernst going for an early cover there, but a good technical match so far.
Ernst hooks Devine up and into a collar-and-elbow tie up! Ernst forcing Devine into the rabble’s corner, gets the tag to Greta and Devine gets the hell out of there! Through the ropes to the outside goes Devine, narrowly escaping a double team opportunity from the Rabble!
JACK JONES: Did you see how quick Devine escaped through the ropes just now?
BILL HEWSON: Excellent presence of mind by Devine to get out of dodge before the tag champs could do some damage!
Devine back into the ring now, and he and Greta square off! Devine goes in for a lock up, Greta with a sneaky go-behind and a hammer lock, Devine reverses into a hold of his own! Shoots Greta into the ropes and on the rebound with a SHOULDER BLOCK and Greta hits the mat! Greta pops up and Devine hits the ropes! Greta with a drop down and Devine sails over top, hitting the opposite ropes! Second rebound, Greta with a leap frog! Devine into the ropes a third time, Greta with a DROP KICK but Devine held the ropes! Greta crashes! Devine throws up a hand!
“FUCK YEAH!” goes the crowd!
BILL HEWSON: Devine loves rallying his army!
JACK JONES: He just likes selling tee shirts.
BILL HEWSON: Who doesn’t?
Greta a little slower to get up this time, Devine looking for some offense, gets the irish whip but Ernst tags her back on the rebound! Ernst is in the ring, now the legal man, Greta with a baseball slide under Devine’s legs, Devine momentarily distracted LARIAT from Ernst and Devine hits the mat! Greta back to the outside, Ernst hooks Devine up and forces him into the corner! Ernst with an ELBOW – Devine ducks under and a DROP KICK to the back puts Ernst in the corner! Devine makes the tag to Eddie, and a DOUBLE SUPLEX puts Ernst down to the mat! Now Eddie is back in!
BILL HEWSON: Impressive symmetry between these too partners who have never wrestled together before!
JACK JONES: Greta does not look happy about that slow double-team count, Hewson!
BILL HEWSON: What are you talking about, Jack Attack, that was clean.
Indeed, Greta reprimanding the referee, but the damage is done. Eddie starts going to work on Ernst, hooking him up and hitting him with a SWEET headbutt! Even EDDIE is a little dizzy after that one! He shakes it off, though, hooks up Ernst, irish whip to the ropes, rebound to a POWERSLAM and Eddie goes for the cover!
And a KICKOUT by Ernst!
BILL HEWSON: We almost had a fall right there, Jack Attack!
Eddie on the offensive, hooks Ernst into his corner and a tag out to Devine! Devine up to the top rope, Eddie with an elbow smash onto Ernst! Ernst reels – DEVINE off the top with FALLING STARS! Devine goes for the cover!
THR – NO ERNST WITH THE KICKOUT!
BILL HEWSON: Say what you will about the Rabble, justified as it may be, but that Ernst is one resilient competitor!
JACK JONES: I wouldn’t want to party with him, Hewson!
Devine was sure he’d had it, but he doesn’t let it slow him down! He crouches near the ropes, calling for Ernst to get to his feet!
JACK JONES: He’s calling for it, Hewson!
BILL HEWSON: The DEVINE INTERVENTION! If Devine hits this, it could be over!
Ernst is almost up! Greta climbs into the ring for the save, Stewie Lamoine is there to stop her – GUSTAV FROM THE OUTSIDE GETS THE ANKLES OF DEVINE! Devine was ready to go for it, got a couple steps into it and GUSTAV killed his momentum with a trip from the outside!
BILL HEWSON: Oh, come on, Gustav isn’t in this match!
JACK JONES: The referee was distracted by Greta trying to get into the ring! Genius teamwork by the tag champs! Just like the time–
BILL HEWSON: NOT NOW, Jack Attack.
Devine is trying to get back to his feet, but Ernst is there first! Huge boot to the head of the grounded Devine! Ernst hooks Devine up by the legs with a GIANT SWING! One, two, three, four, FIVE rotations and Ernst finally releases and Devine crashes into the vacant corner! Devine using the turnbuckle to find his feet, Ernst with a European Uppercut and Devine slumps into the corner! Ernst with mudhole stomps! Stewie Lamoine with the count!
Ernst narrowly avoiding a DQ there, backs off, but gets a KICK into Devine’s face for good measure! Devine holding his nose after that impact! Ernst hooks Devine up. Irish whip, Devine bounces off the ropes, and gets a SIDEWALK SLAM that flattens him!
BILL HEWSON: Huge shift in momentum after that interference by Gustav!
Ernst with the cover, only a two count! Ernst gets Devine up and forces him into the corner where he makes the tag to Greta! DEVINE escapes through the ropes a second time! Greta in the ring is screaming at Stewie Lamoine for some reason, but GUSTAV getting involved again from the outside, DEVINE COUNTERS – DEVINE INTERVENTION ON GUSTAV! THE CROWD GOES WILD! Devine pops up!
Devine caught unawares by a charging Ernst, and gets hit with a full power LARIAT that folds Devine in half! Ernst hooks Devine and IRISH WHIP INTO THE STEEL STEPS! A loud CLANG and Devine cries out in pain! Ernst hoists Devine up and rolls him back into the ring, where Greta only just stopped yelling at the junior referee!
BILL HEWSON: Gustav, further getting involved, gaining the Rabble the tactical advantage a second time!
JACK JONES: That reminds me of the time–
BILL HEWSON: NO, Jack Attack. It’s enough I let you do this to me during commercial.
JACK JONES: But, Hewson, there ARE no commercials!
BILL HEWSON: I know. It’s been a great year.
Devine is trying to get to his feet using the ropes as Eddie now is begging for the tag! Greta sizes up Devine and hits him with a YAKUZA KICK that flattens him! Devine is seeing stars near the Rabble’s corner! Greta tags in Ernst! Ernst with a shove of Devine into the corner, Greta with a LUNGBLOWER and Devine spasms! Greta back to the apron, Ernst hooks Devine up and into an abdominal stretch position as he tags Greta back in! Greta with a wind up and a few STIFF Kawada kicks following up with a ROARING BACKFIST and Devine goes down! Greta makes ANOTHER tag out to Ernst! Eddie’s had it, and tries to intervene, but STEWIE LAMOINE is in his face! Greta and Ernst with a savage beat down on Devine! Eddie tries to get the referee turned around, but Lamoine is adamant that Eddie exit the ring! Eddie finally does so, as quickly as he can in fact, but the damage has been done! Greta finally exits the ring and Devine is trying to crawl for a tag!
BILL HEWSON: A savage beating at the hands of the Rabble while Stewie Lamoine paid too much attention elsewhere!
JACK JONES: Devine really needs that tag, or this could be over soon!
Ernst hooks Devine, but Devine is fighting! Right hands, right hands, right hands galore from the plucky challenger! Ernst gets a knee into Devine’s midsection, stunning him long enough to get him set up for the CRASH!
JACK JONES: THIS COULD BE IT!
BILL HEWSON: LOOK OUT!
CRASH COMING UP – DEVINE WRIGGLES FREE!! He hits the ropes — TORNADO DDT TO ENRST! Ernst and Devine are both down! THE FANS ARE ON THEIR FEET!
BILL HEWSON: Sammy Devine desperately needs the tag!
JACK JONES: REEEEEEAAAACH! REEEEEEAAAACH!
Both wrestlers are crawling to their corners! Eddie leans out as far as he can! Devine, with what remains of his stamina, gets up to his feet, GREAT LUNGE…
MAKES THE HOT TAG TO EDDIE CUZIN EDDIE HOUSAFARRRRR! Eddie with a huge shoulder tackle to Ernst! Greta springboards into the ring — he nails her in mid-air with a tackle. Wait a minute, GUSTAV is on the apron — Eddie nails him with a spinning right hand, sending the extra Rabble member to the floor! Cuzin-mania is runing wild!
Ernst is back on his feet, TAKES A FOOTBALL TACKLE INTO THE CORNER! Greta is back up HUGE RUNNING CROSSBODY AND GRETA GETS FLATTENED! Cuzin Eddie throws his hands up HUGE for the fans, who can’t sit down!
BILL HEWSON: Eddie is turning this around!
JACK JONES: Did you see that crossbody? Greta’s just a little thing!
Ernst finally gets back to his feet, Greta has rolled to the outside! Eddie gets Ernst off the ropes…
PILEDRIVER CONNECTS! THE COVER!
GUSTAV WITH THE SAVE! GUSTAV IS LAYING THE BOOTS TO EDDIE! Stewie Lamoine has no choice but to call for the bell!
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, here are your WINNERS, by DISQUALIFICATION! CUZIN EDDIE, and SAMMY DEVINE!
JACK JONES: The title can’t change hands on a DQ, Hewson!
BILL HEWSON: I know, Jack Attack… and the Rabble know it too! What a travesty, what a heart breaking turn of events for the team of Eddie and Devine!
JACK JONES: It’s not over yet, Hewson!
THE RABBLE are back in the ring and they’re putting the boots to Eddie! Devine in for the save! He nails Gustav! Has the big man Ernst on the ropes! Sammy Devine fired up, turns around — RIGHT INTO THE CODEBREAKER FROM GRETA! Eddie and Devine now being pummelled by the 3-on-2 advantage! The fans boo… then CHEER!
THE A-TEAM FOR THE SAVE! “Ravishing” Randy Erich and “Stunning” Kerry Savage hit the ring at top speed to prevent further damage! Greta quickly bails out of the ring. Gustav sent over the top rope! Ernst standing his ground… double clothesline sends him out. The big man somehow lands on his feet. He makes to get back in the ring but Gustav and Greta grab him. The Rabble beat a hasty retreat down the aisleas the A-Team help Cuzin Eddie and Sammy Devine to their feet.
BILL HEWSON: Thank goodness the A-Team came down to make the save!
JACK JONES: Very good news, Hewson, just like the time —
BILL HEWSON: Bit of an empty victory for Devine and Eddie, but still a victory, and a hard fought one at that! What a clinic!
Eddie and Devine are standing in the ring with the A-Team, who raise the hands of Devine and Eddie in victory. The win is theirs, but not the titles. The fans are applauding —
LIGHTS OUT. Screams. Lights on…
BILL HEWSON: Oh my gosh — LEGION are in the ring!
The good guys barely have time to realize two masked beasts are in the ring before Masakre drops Erich with a vicious headbutt! Clothesline from BEHIND to Cuzin Eddie by Matanza! Devine charges in — caught! T-BONE SUPLEX! Devine lands right on his head! Matanza with a chop to the threat of Kerry Savage, who staggers into a Masakre overhead belly-to-belly suplex! LEGION stand tall in the ring and turn their masked gazes towards The Rabble. The Tag Team Champions have watched the, well, massacre from the relative safety of the entrance curtain. Their faces are a mixture of false bravery and grim German determination. Masakre and Matanza reach out and perform stereo “throat cut” gestures…
Lights out. Back on, and impossibly, LEGION are gone!
JACK JONES: Where the crap did they go?
BILL HEWSON: Masakre and Matanza have left wreckage in their wake… and they’re coming for the Rabble, and the NAPW Tag Team Championship!
JACK JONES: … And that was the last time I did karaoke with Lloyd Rees and Dan Ryan.
BILL HEWSON: Sorry to hear it wasn’t a good time, Jack Attack.
JACK JONES: A Newfie and a Texan dueting on “I Got You, Babe.” The horror… hey, did I ever tell you about the time I went bowling with the New & Improved D-X and Bill Fleming?
BILL HEWSON: Only every Thursday. Coincidentally, that is the day I shower three times.
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, the following match is a rematch from the 2014 Canada Cup Finale!!
“In Waves” by Trivium hits the speakers and the crowd unanimously unleash their hatred towards their former hero!
FRANK WARBURTON: Introducing first, weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and FORTY ONE pounds. From Black Diamond, Washington. He is the 2014 Canada Cup winner and the PERFECT STORM. JAAAAAAY… DESCHAIN!
Jay Deschain casually makes his way out from the back and sneers at the crowd, gleaming Canada Cup trophy in his hands. He shakes his head and heads towards the ring going out of his way to hurl insults at the fans along the way.
BILL HEWSON: What a change in this man!
JACK JONES: He may have changed but he IS the 2014 Canada Cup winner!
“HERE WE ARE!
BORN TO BE KINGS!
WE ARE PRINCES OF THE UNIVERRRRSE…”
FRANK WARBURTON: And his opponent, being accompanied to the ring by Chase Jacobson. Weighing in at TWO HUNDRED pounds. From WINNIPEG, MANITOBA. LIONHEART! KRIS! JACOBSOOOOOOON!
The crowd explodes as Jacobson rushes out from the back and slides into the ring! Deshcain is on him instantly with kicks and stomps to his ‘Lionheart!’ Referee Martin Chan hurriedly calls for the bell as Chase Jacobson has also now made it to ringside.
BILL HEWSON: This has broken down already! A lot of bad blood between these two!
Jacobson fights his way to his feet and the two men start trading rights and lefts! ‘Lionheart’ starts to get the upperhand but Deschain rakes his eyes stopping him cold. Jay whips Jacobson into the ropes, misses with a clothesline as ‘Lionheart’ ducks under and turns around just in time to eat a hurricanrana! Jay rolls to his feet, turns and takes a beautiful standing dropkick that sends him over the top rope to the floor! Kris goes for a baseball slide but Jay sidesteps him and drags him to the outside. A hard whip into the steel steps from Jay shuts down the ‘Lionheart’ fans. Martin Chan is yelling for the men to get back into the ring but Jay ignores him with a one fingered salute. Kris is getting back to his feet and is greeted with a stiff right hand that sends him reeling.
JACK JONES: They’re picking up right where they left off at the Canada Cup finals!
BILL HEWSON: Only this time, Jay Deschain is showing his true colors from the get-go!
Jay rolls Jacobson back into the ring and slides in behind him. Jay waits patiently as Kris gets to his feet and then plants a boot to his gut, doubling Kris over. Jay hooks him, smiles to the crowd, and hoists him up. Deschain keeps Jacobson vertical as the fans who once cheered this move now boo him unmercifully. Jay snaps over Kris with a suplex and floats over for a cover. Jacobson kicks out before the referee can even get into position. Jay pull ‘Lionheart’ to his feet and shoots him into the far corner. Kris puts on the breaks a moment before hitting sternum first against the turnbuckle pads and lashes out with a superkick that catches an incoming Deschain square on the chin! Kris pulls himself up to the second rope, takes flight and hits a tornado DDT on the dazed 2014 Canada Cup winner! Kris tries for a pin but Deschain gets an arm up at 1.
BILL HEWSON: I’m not sure what’s more important in this match between these two. Winning or simply hurting each other.
Kris pulls Jay to his feet and drills him with an European uppercut. Another stiff uppercut drops Deshcain onto his back. Kris steps to the outside and starts going to the high rent district. Shooting star press from Jacobson! But at the last second Jay gets his knees up and the ribs of ‘Lionheart’ take the brunt! Jay rolls to the feet, grabs a doubled over Kris and spins him around. German release suplex into the corner from Jay! Jay is back to his feet and bows before the booing capacity crowd. Kris is dragged back to his feet, and is shot into the ropes. Reversal! Jay comes off the ropes and Jacobson goes for another hurricanrana! It’s revered into a sit out powerbomb from Deschain! Referee Martin Chan dives in for the cover but gets only a count of 2 before the kick out.
BILL HEWSON: Jay seems to have this match firmly in hand as he has a counter for everything Jacobson throws at him.
JACK JONES: That’s when you break out the thumbtacks!
A sneering Jay starts to drag Jacobson to his feet when ‘Lionheart’ quickly hooks him and drops down with a jawbraker! Deschain staggers against the ropes holding his face as Kris gets back to his feet. Jay lunges for him but takes a spinning back kick to the gut from Kris. European uppercut snaps back the head of Jay. A standing dropkick sends Jay out of the ring and onto the ring apron. Kris waits as Jay gets to his feet on the apron then in one fluid motion, jumps to the top rope, leaps and snaps Jay off the apron to the floor with a hurricanrana! The crowd let loose a happy ‘Holy shit!’ chant as Jay lays on the floor clutching at his back. Kris has somehow managed to stay on the ring apron and watches as Deschain slowly gets to his feet. Seated senton off the apron onto his foe! Jacobson gets up and rolls in and then out of the ring breaking the count. Jay is dragged to his feet but takes a thumb to the eye. Deschain grabs the head of ‘Lionheart’ and rams it against the ring barricade. Jay rolls back into the ring as Chase checks on his boy.
JACK JONES: Hey get that old codger out of there! This isn’t a handicap match!
Jay has an evil grin and suddenly hits the opposite ropes. A HUGE suicide dive over the tope rope and into both Chase and Kris! The crowd is furious and some stray empty popcorn boxes fly past Deschain’s head. The referee is outside and Jay pleads his innocence and claims it was an accident as both Chase and Kris lay on the floor.
BILL HEWSON: How disgusting! Jay Deschain was aiming for both of them! He wants to not only win but to humiliate the Jacobson family!
Martin Chan is seen calling for help from the back and Deschain grabs a woozy Kris and rolls him into the ring. Two trainers run down to ringside but Jay pays them no mind as he goes to pull Kris to his feet. A sudden knee from Kris to the gut doubles over Jay. Winnipeg Destroyer from Jacobson!!! The crowd is going crazy as Kris covers Jay but the referee is still outside with the paramedics checking on Chase Jacobson!
JACK JONES: Ha! Love it!
BILL HEWSON: Kris Jacobson has this match won! Get the referee back in there!
Martin Chan turns around (thanks to some irate fans) and sees the cover! He slides back into the ring and makes the count!
Jay gets a shoulder up at 2 and 9/10ths!!!
BILL HEWSON: If not for the distraction on the outside, Deschain would have just been pinned!
JACK JONES: Should’ve, could’ve, would’ve. Things happen.
Kris is arguing with the referee as Jay slowly gets to his feet. On the outside it looks as if Chase is being helped to the back. Kris turns his attention back to Jay — TORNADO BUSTER. Spinebuster obliterates Jacobson. Jay, still woozy on his feet, goes to try and lock up the legs of Kris for a Sharpshooter but Kris manages to wiggle his way to the ropes calling for a break. Jay drags Kris away from the ropes and hoists him up onto his shoulders. Snake eyes onto the top turnbuckle from Jay! Deschain hits the ropes as Jacobson staggers —
Jacobson ducks under! An off balance Deschain spins around and takes a nasty side kick to the head! Kris hooks him, hoists him up to the top turnbuckle and follows him up. Jacobson hooks Deschain and goes for a superplex only to have Jay reverse it and crotch ‘Lionheart’ onto the top rope!
JACK JONES: Oh! Well…That hurts. Let me tell you about the time when….
BILL HEWSON: Later.
Jay comes off the top rope with a clothesline that turns Kris inside out and leaves him laying face fist onto the mat. Jay leans against the ropes and taunts the fans as Jacobson lays motionless. “The Perfect Storm” turns his attention back to Kris and pulls him up from the mat. From nowhere Kris reaches out and cradles Jay into a schoolboy!
JACK JONES: Wait! What!?
Kris rolls away from a shocked Jay Deschain and the crowd explodes!
FRANK WARBURTON: The winner of this match… ‘Lionheart’ Kris Jacobson!!!
Jay is in the face of referee Martin Chan and he looks furious! A battered Kris Jacobson is leaning against the ropes smiling out at the fans. He’s just avenged his loss to Deschain in the finals from last month!
BILL HEWSON: Just that fast, Deschain took his eye of the ball, and we have what I consider an upset! The 2014 Canada Cup winner has been pinned!
Martin Chan raises Jacobson’s hand in victory — and without warning Jay attacks Kris from behind! The Perfect Storm quickly drops ‘Lionheart’ to the mat with a flurry of punches and kicks. The crowd boos… then erupts in cheers as CHASE JACOBSON runs out from the back and slides into the ring!
Jay is quickly on him but the veteran pops Jay with one, two, three solid right hands!! Jay whipped into the ropes and a big backdrop from Chase! The crowd is going crazy! Jay pops up, spots Kris getting to his feet and then rolls to the outside. The fans are all over him but Jay doesn’t care. He yells into the camera that he could ‘beat them both’ but casually (always keeping on eye on the ring) makes his way to the back all the while berating the fans at ringside.
Kris and his pops stand tall in the middle of the squared circle. Deschain 1, Jacobson 1. Each man holds one win each. Will there be another?
Backstage. Cuzin Eddie and Sammy Devine are sitting on the locker room benches, the lack of championship gold weighing heavily on their minds. Devine has his boots unlaced, Eddie’s coveralls halfway undone. Neither man seems in a hurry to shower and change. Disappointment is palpable. Suddenly, commissioner Terry Brandon walks into the picture.
Terry Brandon: Hey fellas, great show, I say, great show out there tonight.
Devine scoffs and Eddie looks sideways at Brandon.
Cuzin Eddie: I don’t know if ya saw out there… but we’s had them tag belts won… til the Rabble got ‘emselves purposefully disqualified… not a great show in my book.
Terry Brandon: I know, and you’re right. You two deserve to be the tag team champions right now, but… so I will tell you WHAT. Next month, we are going to crown the new Canadian Heritage Champion! There are a few deserving individuals who should be given a shot at the gold, and that includes YOU!
Eddie and Devine exchange glances, then Devine speaks up with a skeptical nod.
Sammy Devine: You mean me… or him?
Brandon grins, he anticipated this response.
Terry Brandon: Both of you! Next month, at MAYDAY!, competing to become the first Heritage Champion in four years! A few wrestlers tonight, guys who have proven themselves for a chance at championship gold so let me break it down! It’s going to be ANDELLION MOONWATER! Versus KRIS JACOBSON! Versus CUZIN EDDIE! Versus SAMMY DEVINE! One fall to win it all! No problem boys, you can thank me later, now I have a main event to oversee!
Brandon exits the scene with as much tumult as he entered. Devine and Eddie get to their feet, looking intently at the other. Devine grins.
Sammy Devine: Hey, may the best man win.
Cuzin Eddie: Ya got it… bring it on!
A solid handshake between two fan-favorites and terrific competitors. But next month, only one man of four will emerge as the new Canadian Heritage Champion!
JACK JONES: … donating genetic material was the only way I wasn’t going to lose my house.
BILL HEWSON: So you’ve just discovered you have have…
JACK JONES: Seven biological children.
BILL HEWSON: God help us all.
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, the following NO DISQUALIFICATION TRIPLE-THREAT match is scheduled for ONE FALL… and it is for the NAPW WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP.
Fans cheer at the news – but that cheering makes an abrupt 180 degree turn as the sonorous Saint-Saens’ Symphony Number 3 hits the speakers.
FRANK WARBURTON: Introducing first, being accompanied to the ring by the EARL OF DOKKEN, and weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and SEVENTY-FOUR pounds. From REGINA, Saskatchewan. CLANCY! KING!
Boos rains down as the EARL OF DOKKEN steps out from the curtain, then holds it aside for CLANCY KING. King, wearing his ermine robe, looks a bit haggard, but holds his head high as he makes his way to the ring.
BILL HEWSON: It’s been an unusually quiet month from the corner of Clancy King, after his meteoric rise in NAPW was cut short last month at “Canada Cup.”
JACK JONES: King was ROBBED, Hewson! He was distracted by the Earl of Dokken’s hijinks at ringside, and that cost him the match! Heck, the Earl is lucky to still have a job, tonight!
BILL HEWSON: That’s… one way to look at it, I guess. Regardless, King’s title reign was a short one, and he’ll be looking to reclaim his glory tonight against two fierce opponents.
King shoots a glare at a the jeering fans in the front row, wipes his feet on the apron, then steps into the ring. The Earl follows him in dutifully. Head referee Morgan Smythe directs them to one of the far corners, and the Earl removes King’s cape … just as an AIR RAID SIREN comes over the PA?
JACK JONES: Oh no, my seven biological bionic children have come for my hide!
Heavy guitar kicks in. “Indestructible” by Disturbed.
“I’LL HAVE YOU KNOW
THAT I’VE BECOME
The NAPW faithful look on… and ANTON PETROV in a soviet red hooded robe steps through the curtain. Eyes cold.
“ANNIHILATION WILL BE UNAVOIDABLE
EVERY BROKEN ENEMY WILL KNOW
THAT THEIR OPPONENT HAD TO BE INVINCIBLE”
FRANK WARBURTON: And his opponent, accompanied by JACKSON KASS. Weighing in at TWO HUNDRED and SEVENTY-SEVEN pounds. From St. Petersburg, Russia. He is the SOVIET SLAUGHTERHOUSE… ANTOOOOOON! PETOVVVVVVV!
There is a mixed reaction as Petrov, followed by his manager JACKSON KASS, starts down the ramp toward the ring. Petrov’s facade is GRIM, jaw set. He glares at an angry looking King.
JACK JONES: I thought these fans suddenly LOVED Petrov. What gives?
BILL HEWSON: Some of them respect him as a wrestler… some of them clearly remember his interference in Abbey Graves’ moment at “Canada Cup.” It doesn’t help that he blamed HER for getting in his way.
JACK JONES: Well she was in his way! In the way of his fists, in the way of his vengeance – and now she’s in the way of his regaining his NAPW Championship!
BILL HEWSON: I’d say his success may hinge on his mental condition. Has the former champ got his head straight?
Petrov climbs into the ring, and King immediately shouts at Morgan Smythe to make sure he keeps his distance. Petrov sneers, but keeps back as Smythe directs him to the opposite corner. While Morgan’s back is turned, King smirks and raises his pinky finger… showing off the ring he made of Petrov’s nameplate. The Soviet Slaughterhouse’s eyes flash with rage…
BILL HEWSON: Uh oh!
JACK JONES: Here we go!
… but he holds back, glaring a hole in King’s face. King laughs, then tosses the ring to the Earl just as “2nd Sucks” hits the speakers and the crowd rises to its feet!
FRANK WARBURTON: And their opponent, weighing in at ONE HUNDRED and THIRTY pounds. From Coram, New York. She is YOUR NAPW WORLD CHAMPION! ABBEY! GRAAAAAAAAVES!
ABBEY GRAVES explodes from the curtains to a huge, HUGE pop. She sprints down the ramp, slides into the ring, kips up, and runs up the nearest ringpost to hold the NAPW World Championship belt high!
BILL HEWSON: A big ovation for NAPW World Champion Abbey Graves, as she gets set for her first title defence!
JACK JONES: A tall order, Hewson. I’m not playing the “she’s a girl” card, because I’ll be the first to say she’s a proven competitor… but look at the size of those two men in the ring! She’s outweighed by over a hundred pounds by BOTH of her opponents.
BILL HEWSON: She’s beaten two men in the ring at the same time before, Jack Attack. In her very first match. She won Battlebowl against FIVE other competitors!
JACK JONES: Yeah. But the belt wasn’t on the line then. And that brings out a different level of competition.
Graves hops down from the corner, and hands the belt off to Morgan Smythe, who holds it up for everyone to take in. She then falls back and calls for the bell…
DING! DING! DING!
BILL HEWSON: … and Clancy King has just levelled the champion.
The crowd boos as King barely waits for the bell before he unloads with a running lariat that drops Graves. Abbey quickly rolls aside to avoid being trampled by Anton Petrov as he storms after Clancy, driving him into the corner and unloading a series of lefts and rights that stagger King. He then grabs King’s arm and whips him toward the middle of the ring…
Where Abbey Graves meets him with a sweet running knee to the face!
JACK JONES: No fair double-teaming royalty!
King is levelled to a huge cheer from the crowd! The Earl of Dokken is angrily banging on the apron, calling for a disqualification… for reasons of his guy is losing, I guess? Graves rolls aside so Petrov can rush back over and yank King back up by his arm… clothesline! Petrov keeps hold of the arm, pulls King back up… clothesline! Back up a third time… and the Petrov Pulverizer is complete! King actually flips right over the last clothesline, landing awkwardly to an “ooooh” from the crowd, and Petrov drops to hook the leg!
JACK JONES: New old champion!?
1! And Abbey Graves nails Petrov right in the brain with the stiffest looking kick.
BILL HEWSON: Ooh! That’s gotta hurt! Graves and Petrov are on the same page regarding King… but they both want the belt at the end of the night.
JACK JONES: It’s first prize, Hewson. Beating a hated foe is the consolation.
The Soviet Slaughterhouse looks at Graves for a second with glassy eyes, then tumbles backward with a thud. Graves then rushes the corner, leaps to the top, and hits Petrov with a big splash from the top rope! Petrov thrashes in the ring as Jackson Kass clutches his hat, looking worried. Graves rolls aside, clutching her ribs for a moment, then kips up…
… and gets a DIVINE RIGHT from Clancy King! Graves goes ass over teakettle to a chorus of boos from the crowd!
JACK JONES: Don’t take your eyes of the King!
King, smirking, pulls Abbey back up… BIG BEN! Graves crashes backward in the ring, limbs splayed in every direction. Clancy sets a foot on her and raises his arms in victory, head held high!
JACK JONES: New old champion!?
And Anton Petrov with a running Lou Thesz Press that nearly takes King out of his boots! He starts raining down punches! Graves has the presence of mind to roll out of the ring for a moment… holding the back of her head.
BILL HEWSON: Wait… what’s the Earl doing?
As Morgan Smythe pays especial attention to the clubbering happening in the ring, the Earl of Dokken sneaks up behind Graves… and wraps King’s cloak around her neck! He starts choking her out at ringside to screams and boos from the crowd!
BILL HEWSON: Someone stop that man!
JACK JONES: Clancy King’s Minister of Defence is just doing his job, Hewson! Taking out threats to the Royal Person!
The Earl looks enraged and starts shouting as Abbey struggles against him. “You think you’re BETTER than Clancy, King of NAPW, you PLEBIAN!? You’ll regret EVER standing in his way!” Graves chokes out what may have been a curse-word, then starts to fade, face turning red. In the ring, Petrov finally stops raining down punches and pulls a staggered King to his feet. He pulls King over his shoulders for the Russian Racker… but then notices Graves being choked over Smythe’s shoulder. There’s a second of hesitation… and that’s all Clancy need to wriggle through, land on his feet… Bulldog plants Anton in the ring! At ringside, Graves’ arms are hanging at her side, uselessly. It looks like she’s out cold! King is laughing as he turns Petrov over…
BILL HEWSON: No! King can’t steal another win! Not against Graves AND Petrov!
King pounds on the mat and argues with Smythe. The Earl looks over into the ring to see what’s happening… and JACKSON KASS leaps on his back! The Earl cries out in surprise, releasing Abbey Graves to collapse in a heap, face-first a ringside. He staggers around, flailing madly, trying to get Kass off! King, seeing the commotion at ringside, finally points it out to Smythe, who rushes over and shouts at the two managers to stop acting like children. While her back is turned, Clancy grabs the Soviet Slaughterhouse’s legs… and drops a knee RIGHT IN THE GROIN! The crowd boos and Petrov thrashes in the ring, feeling an agony only a man can know.
BILL HEWSON: Ouch! Right in the little Antons!
JACK JONES: No disqualifications in a Triple Threat, Hewson. King’s using every royal advantage he has.
The Earl finally manages to shrug off Kass, and then ducks a right from the manager! Dokken starts shouting bloody murder and runs back up the ramp, with Kass right on his tail! They disappear behind the curtains!
JACK JONES: Where are they going!? Their clients are in the ring… battling for the CHAMPIONSHIP!
Smythe watches the managers disappear into the back, then turns to see King pull Petrov into a sitting position. Clancy throws his opponent into a Straightjacket Crossface, and Petrov winces and starts trying to inch his way toward the ropes. As much as fans are divided on Petrov becoming champion – they DEFINITELY don’t want King to regain the belt, and they’re making that clear. They start stomping and clapping, trying to feet the Soviet Slaughterhouse some energy. Petrov reaches out a leg, but can’t quite get a ropebreak that King might not even honour in the no DQ situation. King is shouting “TAP! TAP OUT!”
Graves is still lying prone, on her face, at ringside.
Both managers are MIA.
Anton Petrov has no help and no obvious escape.
King has him trapped.
So the Soviet Slaughterhouse just powers out instead.
King’s eyes bug out as Petrov, with a great bellow, forces his way free of the hold with a surprising surge of strength and a little bit of agility. He turns, catching Clancy’s arms and planting a headbutt on him. King staggers all the way back to the ropes – and Petrov rushes at him with a running clothesline that clears them both over the top! They tumble to ringside to a big cheer from the crowd!
JACK JONES: Heads up, Hewson!
Petrov grabs King by the hair and drives him into the ring-barrier next to the announce team. King hangs there, shaking his head, and turns to see Petrov come at him with a running tackle that sends both of them THROUGH THE BARRIER!
JACK JONES: HOLY HELL!
The steel barricade falls, sending front-row fans scrambling away as King and Petrov crash to the ground! There’s no count-out, so Smythe follows them into the crowd.
BILL HEWSON: This isn’t a falls count anywhere situation. No one can win unless they get back in the ring!
JACK JONES: I don’t think Petrov is worried about that at the moment, Hewson.
Anton is back on his feet, a chair in hand, and brings it down on Clancy’s back. King winces in agony and tries to crawl away, but Petrov brings the chair down again and King collapses. Petrov literally hands the chair off to a fan who’s shouting “Finish him, Petrov! Finish him!” He then hauls Clancy up… eye rake from King! Petrov staggers back with an enraged cry, but King catches his arm and whips him into another row of chairs with a crash. Fans continue to move out of the way as King advances on Anton, who’s working to disentangle himself from the chairs. He reaches down and pulls Petrov up, then unloads a sweet Roaring Elbow that sends the Soviet Slaughterhouse toppling back over into the heap of chairs.
JACK JONES: This is chaos!
King smirks and pulls Petrov up, setting up for the Coronation ONTO THE PILE OF CHAIRS.
BILL HEWSON: Don’t do it!
He turns… and GETS A FACE FULL OF ABBEY GRAVES’ FEET!
The crowd. Goes.
King drops Petrov and wheels around, staggering. Graves hops back up, delivers a spinning kick to Clancy’s midsection, and PLANTS him with a DDT – RIGHT IN THE AISLE. His limbs spasm and Graves kips up again, shouting, getting fired up… and gets an STO for her trouble from the Soviet Slaughterhouse! The fans start BOOING Petrov, who just sneers and he pulls Graves back up, hoists her up on his shoulder, gets a running start, and LAWN DARTS her out of the arena door and into the lobby!
JACK JONES: You CAN’T PIN HER IN THE LOBBY! THROW HER IN THE RING!
But Abbey Graves isn’t the person Petrov wants to end. With Graves having disappeared from the picture, Petrov, breathing hard, pulls King back up to his feet… and gets staggered by an European Uppercut! King clutches at his head and winces as Anton staggers back, then comes back swinging with a big right hand punch! King staggers a bit, then unloads another European Uppercut! Petrov with another punch! Uppercut! Punch! Uppercut! Punch! Uppercut!
Then both men look up.
To where the NAPW World Champion is standing on the BALCONY.
JACK JONES: HOOOOOOOLYYYYYYYY HELLLLLLLLLLLL!
King and Petrov are both LEVELLED by Graves as the crowd goes INSANE. “HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT!” The three competitors just lay there in a heap for a moment. There’s no count out – but if they can’t continue the match will end. Morgan Smythe starts the count. 1! 2! 3! Petrov starts showing some life, rolling over. 4! 5! Abbey Graves KIPS UP to a huge CHEER. Smythe stops the count as Abbey grabs the Soviet Slaughterhouse in a headlock and starts walking him back to the ring. Petrov gets pulled along – but he’s playing possum. Just before Graves can roll him into the ring, he grabs her arm and whips her into the ringpost! Abbey bounces backward… into a SOVIET SUCKERPUNCH!
BILL HEWSON: To the back of the head AGAIN! The same attack that nearly made Abbey miss her title match at “Canada Cup!”
JACK JONES: A dangerous attack from a dangerous man. Never turn your back on the Soviet Slaughterhouse, Hewson.
Abbey collapses, clutching her head and thrashing her legs. The crowd is booing Petrov pretty hard as he glares calmy, coldly around the arena. He doesn’t care what they think of him – he’s here to win. He roughly hauls Graves to her feet, and drapes her over his shoulders. Carrying her fireman-style, he reaches up and climbs to the apron.
BILL HEWSON: What’s he doing?
King is very slowly trying to get back to his feet, way in the cheap seats. The crowd continues to boo as Petrov starts up the ringpost in the corner.
JACK JONES: I think you know what he’s doing, Hewson! He’s winning back his NAPW WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP!
Petrov stops at the top rope, Abbey Graves still on his shoulders.
SUPER SOVIET STEAMROLLER
REVERSED INTO A TOP ROPE HURRICANRANA
Petrov is driven into the ring like a tentpole to a TREMENDOUS POP from the crowd! He hangs there for what seems like too long to be possible before crashing backward into the ring! Abbey Graves rolls over and hooks his leg! THE CROWD IS ON ITS FEET!
BILL HEWSON: YES!
JACK JONES: NO!
The crowd BOOS loudly as King breaks up what was almost certainly a winning pin. He unloads another stomp on Abbey Graves then roughly pulls her up, and whips her into the corner. He lets out an angry snarl and charges after her… nobody home! Graves leapfrogs over him and King crashes into the corner post! He sags, pulls himself around…
King drops back in the corner, hanging off the bottom rope. He’s out of it! The crowd is still on its feet…
But they’re screaming for Graves to turn around!
She does… SOVIET SUCKERPUNCH!
And Anton Petrov’s eyes BUG OUT as Graves DUCKS under it, grabs him by the head, the momentum carrying them both into the corner… over Clancy King’s seated body…
Petrov bounces off the mat onto his back! Graves hooks the leg!
The crowd EXPLODE with cheers!
FRANK WARBURTON: Ladies and gentlemen, here is your winner… and STILL NAPW WORLD CHAMPION! ABBEEEEYYYYYY! GRAAAAAAAAVES!
A Day to Remember hits the speakers in triumph. Morgan Smythe hands Graves back the championship belt and Abbey looks close to tears to have retained it.
BILL HEWSON: SHE DID IT!
JACK JONES: This crowd hasn’t sat down! But many of them no longer have chairs to sit in!
The Earl of Dokken and Jackson Kass are still nowhere to be seen. King has rolled out the ring and, clutching his head, is staggering away quietly. Slowly, Petrov pulls himself up on the ropes. Abbey turns to him, belt over her shoulder… and offers him her hand. Petrov looks up at her for a moment, then shakes his head and rolls out of the ring. The crowd boos a bit, but as he starts away from the ring, Anton stops, glances over his shoulder at Graves… and gives her a curt nod.
BILL HEWSON: Petrov isn’t going to shake her hand… but it looks like our champion may have still earned a measure of his respect tonight.
Graves nods back at him, then hits each of the corner in succession, celebrating with the NAPW fans!
BILL HEWSON: Abbey Graves has retained her NAPW World Championship in what may have been her most difficult challenge yet, Jack Attack.
JACK JONES: I’ll admit it, Hewson. She weathered the storm tonight. But there’s another one just on the horizon… a PERFECT STORM.
And even as Jack Jones says that, “In Waves” hits the speakers. Graves stops her celebrating as the cheers turn to boos. She watches as JAY DESCHAIN walks out from behind the curtain, smirking. He’s holding the Canada Cup, and he points at Graves. “Next month, that’s mine,” he mouths over the music.
Graves just smiles sweetly at him and holds the belt high.
“Come get it, asshole.”
B-Sinor wrote Deschain/Jacobson II: the Stormening
Jay-cub went old school with the tag title match
Mister Brantastic contributed the ILL debut segment
Scotty and Ro-Bot did the rest, baby