Static covers the screen as a Play ► symbol appears in the bottom right-hand corner.
Mysterion, appearing most unpleased, steps into a small room backstage.
“Ah, Master Mysterion.”
He sits at a small desk in the center of the room. A laptop open, the scream illuminating his visage.
“What is all this about?” Mysterion asks. “What do you want?”
“Well,” Newton begins. “It appears your thrashing of Nightstick has not prevented him from further action. Take a look.”
Newton points to the laptop screen. Mysterion makes his way around the desk and peers at the screen.
The grainy, muted footage on the screen shows Zander Zane being interrogated by two of Miami’s Finest, alongside Nightstick.
They beat him mercilessly as they do so.
Mysterion looks at Newton. “Wow. Looks like they’re kicking his ass. Quick question, Eddie. Why would I care one bit about any of this?”
Newton smiles and adjusts his glasses. “May I be frank with you, Master Mysterion?”
“I want you to win at Over the Limit.”
The Cloaked Conundrum snarls. “Why?”
“To be honest,” Newton states. “Between a literal god, the god of rock and roll who has a bitter taste in his mouth for your’s trult, and a cop who was beaten mercilessly because of my meddling? You are logically my most favorable matchup.”
Mysterion is afflicted. Half-offended, half-understanding. “You haven’t answered my question.”
“It should be quite clear to you by now Master Mysterion. The fact is, Nightstick is trying to eliminate Zander Zane from the fatal four way. It should be equally obvious that, despite your admirably villainous nature, you are the smallest of the competitors in that bout. Your chances of winning a fatal four way are much greater than winning a triple threat.”
“You insult me.”
Newton laughs. “The truth is not insulting, Master Mysterion. Your interpretation of it is. What I am trying to say is, it would behoove us both if you helped Zander escape that police station. Free him? And you preserve your chances of a victory, and my chances of having the opponent I desire.”
Mysterion walks towards the door.
“Will you do it?”
Mysterion swings the door open and exits. “I’ll think about it.”
Newton nods as Mysterion closes the door.
Mysterion walks down the hallway. Long, dark, and all alone.
Until a snake, who appears to burn with fire, slithers around the Cloaked Conudrum’s feet.
Mysterion grins. “The fire wyrm. Truly, is that you Solveig? Or should I say Loki?”
The fire wyrm replies, “Whichever you prefer is fine.”
Troy Solveig now stands before Mysterion, a snake no more.
Solveig chuckles. “Interesting. You recognize a snake for who he truly is, but you don’t recognize one hissing in your ear.”
Mysterion rolls his eyes. “Get on with it.”
Solveig nods. “Last week’s tape? This week’s footage? It was all staged. A false flag attack, as it were.”
Mysterion scrunches his nose. “How?”
Troy slips a flash drive into Mysterion’s hand.
“When you have a moment, take a look at the data.” Troy Solveig turns and walks away. “Behold how far our Riddler’s puppet strings extend.”
Mysterion looks at the flash drive in his hand. He looks up at Solveig.
But Solveig is gone.
A broken light sways over a dark alley, giving brief glimpses of light.
A green glow at their back, the quintet of Berengar, Redwing, Gameboy, Spero, and Darkwish cut through the dense darkness to stand before an innocuous door. Berengar raises an eyebrow to Darkwish.
“This the place?” The Void Knight asks.
A nod from Darkwish is the response.
CRASH! BERENGAR KICKS DOWN THE DOOR!
The Knight stands next to the door, brandishing Vigilkeeper, as Spero rushes in first, illuminating a dark room with his ring. Redwing and Darkwish rush in behind him to ward off any potential attack. Berengar looks to Gameboy with a sideways glance.
“My HUD is flashing.” The gamer says, shaking his head. “There’s trouble ahead.”
A sly grin is the response as Berengar rushes in to join his partners, Gameboy bringing up the rear. The action has already concluded, though. Two of the Nightmare Family are laid out beside another door, Darkwish kneeling over one with his fist still drawn back. The others surround a figure bound to a chair.
“Magdalene?” Berengar asks, kneeling in front of Manson’s captive.
He grabs a burlap sack placed over the figure’s head, pulling it off.
PIPE TO DARKWISH!
PIPE TO REDWING!
GAMEBOY IS DOWN!
Spero and Berengar are left alone, surrounded now by the minions of one David Manson.
And Eli Forever is sat in the chair, laughing at them.
“Did you really think it would be that easy?” Forever asks, the bonds falling off instantly. “If rescuing my mother dearest were this easy, I’d have already done it.”
Marching into the small room, David Manson saunters in, looking at the fallen bodies with a grin on his face.
“I knew you fuckers would try something. Trapped your dumb asses, didn’t I?” He spits at Berengar. “These cunt grunts don’t know shit.”
Sideways glance from Eli, his hand instinctively reaching to his pocket. Berengar definitely notices, making sure Spero did as well with a glance. Then he turns his attention to Manson, Vigilkeeper at ready.
“We thought this might be a trap, but we came anyway. Because it’s the right thing to do.” He nods to Spero.
Spero holds out his hand, blue light flowing from his ring to encompass their downed allies. As he does so, Spero turns his attention to Manson as well.
“I know that it’s a little hard for you to notice anything but yourself, Manson, but it’s obvious to anyone with eyes that Eli is going to be the one to take you down. He just hasn’t realized it yet.”
Manson snorts as the Shadow Force begins to disappear into the blue light, but Spero isn’t done.
“Or maybe he has.”
Shadow Force teleport from within this room, leaving David Manson to glower at Eli Forever, who shows no emotion either way.
BERENGAR VS. LUTHER CREED
The Void Knight takes on a proverbial Knight of the People as Berengar goes one on one with Luther Creed.
The bell sounds and Berengar immediately sends his boot straight into Luther Creed. Creed reaches his feet and Berengar drops him with a lariat! A bad start for the leader of the Revolution, who rolls out of the ring to catch his breath. Berengar motions for Luther to step back into the ring. Creed rolls under the bottom rope and reaches his feet fast enough to catch the giant Void Knight slipping. THESZ PRESS FROM CREED! Creed pounds Berengar in the jaw with lefts and rights!
Luther stands up and ROARS at the audience, who cheer him on as he starts delivering boot after boot after BOOT to Berengar’s chest! Creed grabs Berengar by his hair and lifts him up. DDT– NO! Berengar LIFTS Creed up into a fireman’s carry position! FIREMAN’S CARRY INTO A POP UP DDT!! HOLY FUCKING SHIT!!! Berengar makes the cover! This one might be over early!! ONE… TWO… THRE– KICKOUT IN THE NICK OF TIME BY CREED! Berengar stands to his feet. He lifts Luther Creed to his. Berengar whips Creed into the ropes! Big boot!! Creed ducks underneath it, bounces off the ropes, HUGE SPEAR FROM CREED!!
Both competitors lay on their backs, breathing heavily. As the crowd cheers them on, both of them slowly but surely climb to their feet. Berengar lands a HUGE LEFT across Creed’s face, staggering him! BIG RIGHT from Creed in return! Left! Right! Left! Right! A BIG BOOT from Berengar DROPS Creed to the ground. Berengar quickly follows up on the momentum and lifts Creed up by his arm! He whips Creed into the ropes!! POP UP POWERBOMB!! THE VANQUISHER!! GOD DAMN!! BERENGAR MAKES THE COVER!!! ONE… TWO… THREE!!!
The Void Knight stands to his feet and has his arm raised in victory, a well-earned one at that!
“PICK AND CHOOSE”
We cut backstage to find Gameboy and the other members of the newly revamped Shadow Force collectively watching and waiting for Berengar’s return after his match. However, it is not Berengar but D’Von Chambers that happens upon the group. He singles out one man with quite the bee in his bonnet. Without care for the other members, he strides straight up to Gameboy and stands directly in his line of sight.
“We stood united.” Chambers looks on at his partner with a mixture of hurt and frustration. “We battled side by side and now when we need each other more than ever, you have decided to pin your allegiances on old acquaintances. I need to trust you.”
Gameboy looks around him, the collection of questing parties he had accumulated at his disposal. Each look on with the same look. Unsure what he will choose.
“Have I run out of companion slots for my questing party? Why can I not select all?”
Chambers draws a deep breath, exhaling loudly with audible frustration.
“You cannot pick and choose who has your back. If you want me to have yours, you have to have mine. By Yahweh’s good grace, I’d rather have you at my side than the Scarecrow.”
Gameboy nods in approval, still not quite sure of what the issue at hand actually is. But he knows he feels the same way.
“United by a mutual distrust. You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.”
D’Von has the response he sought. His mood softens a little and he takes his leave. When the dust settles, where Gameboy’s allegiances lie is anybody’s guess. But for now, Chambers rests on the fact that Scarecrow’s seed of doubt has not grown further.
Earlier, Fuller Park, Chicago
We find Redmond Quinn standing on a street corner, watching the scenes of a troubled neighberhood go down. Kids play in fenced in yards, while teens fool around a streetlight just down the way. But despite this somewhat calm scenery, Quinn looks haggard, almost unkempt.
In his hands, he holds a note. We can just make out the following from the angle of the camera.
“Meet me where it began.
“Lovely day isn’t it?”
Quinn turns to find his tag team partner standing there, a small smile on his face. He claps a hand on his friend’s shoulder. Quinn, his voice tinged with exhaustion.
“Two reasons. One, you needed to get out. Locking yourself up in your office wasn’t going to solve anything.
Luther gives a small chuckle, and points down to the street corner of 51st and Princeton. It’s an unassuming street corner for today, but when Creed speaks, the humor that was in his voice has been replaced with a serious tone.
“It was there where Mike died. It’s cleaned now, but the cops have been good cleaning up blood in this area man. It was that day I had to make a choice. Either I could bow, try and appease the pigs that had put a bullet into my friend and choked the life out of him, or stand up against them no matter what the cost. I chose the latter, which is why I’m still here.”
“And here you are Quinn. You’ve got your own choice. You crossed a line that ended with another dead body on the ground. It’s not an easy line to choose, between crossing the line again if needed, or never doing it again. But you’ve got to make it.”
With that, he turns and walks back down the street, leaving a quiet Redmond to reflect on his options.
KING ARTHUR © VS. VENGEANCE
VHS CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
It’s a battle between a King and a Warrior tonight as King Arthur steps across the ring from Vengeance!
The bell sounds as these two men collide in the center of the ring with a huge collar-and-elbow lockup. Vengeance gets the upper hand before driving a punch right into the midsection of Arthur! He pulls him down before hooking his head and driving him into the mat with a fierce DDT! He pulls Arthur back to his feet quickly before wrapping up his abdomen and releasing him over his head for a belly-to-belly suplex! Arthur hits the mat and just keeps rolling until he’s out on the floor. V doesn’t let this separation deter him as he rolls out with him.
But Arthur nails him with a kick to the midsection followed by a running spear into the apron! Arthur grabs the arm of Vengeance and wraps it around the ringpost before just SNAPPING back with it! V’s eyes water up from the pain as his arm could have been popped out of socket by the impact! King Arthur slowly rises to his feet and looks down upon Vengeance disapprovingly. He kicks Vengeance in the ribs before rolling him into the ring. He slides in afterwards and leaps onto him before applying… MORDRED’S DEMISE! The dragon sleeper is cinched in tight as Vengeance is in the very center of the ring!
Vengeance is squirming and throwing punches into the back of Arthur, but Arthur has the hold locked in! Vengeance manages to fall back far enough to get some momentum to push himself forward! Vengeance’s foot gets to the ropes! The referee begins his count, and Arthur relinquishes his hold right at a count of four! Arthur rises to his feet and begins preparing for the end! Vengeance slowly stands and…catches a knee right to the face! KING’S CROSSING! King Arthur falls into a cover! ONE…TWO…THREE!
King Arthur rises to his feet as the referee bestows his gold upon him having successfully defended his VHS Championship!
“BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE”
April 2nd, 2019
The fuming Tomasso Vitale barges into the same diner that we’ve seen before. He storms past others who turn to look at him questioningly before he reaches the back door where Lorenzo is stationed.
“Whoa, kid. What’s your rush?”
The ‘kid’ stops as the hands of Lorenzo dusting off his lapels as Zo shakes his head.
“Zo. I need to speak with him. Right now. It’s life or death.”
The older gentleman nods, adjusts his pantsline, and enters the back room. Vitale turns to look around awkwardly as he waits. Zo steps back out and lets Tommy in.
They step into the backroom as The Boss has a litany of papers in front of him. Two men stand at his side pointing at different figures on the ledgers and making notes.
“Come on in, Tommy. You said this was life or death?”
“Yeah, Boss. I need to know why you lied to me about Franky and all of the others.”
The room grows silent. The Boss waves away the two men at his side and slinks back in his chair as his icy gaze reaches across the table towards Vitale.
“You wanna run that by me again, kid?”
The threat in his voice could be felt throughout the room, but Vitale didn’t budge.
“He didn’t kill them.”
“Vengeance. He didn’t kill them.”
“He told me!”
The Boss scoffs.
“And you believed him? You gonna start believing in the tooth fairy too if tall, dark, and brooding says she’s real too?”
Snickers are heard throughout the room as Vitale’s face flusters.
“I had him under truth serum.”
The room grows hushed as Boss’s eyes twitch to Zo for a half-second before returning back to Tommy.
“What ELSE did he tell you?”
There is a brief moment as Vitale remembers their conversation.
“He knows about my daughter. He threatened to use her against me.”
The Boss sits up and walks around to Tommy. He rests both of his hands on his shoulders and tools him square in the face.
“Now, you listen here. We’re going to figure out what happened to our friends and what connections this Vengeance guy has to it, alright? And your daughter is going to be protected. Now, I just need you to get some rest. Leave the rest of this up to us.”
He pats Vitale on the cheek as a form of dismissal before turning back to his papers and shooting a glance to Zo.
Vitale steps out of the diner and quickly lights up a cigarette.
He begins walking down the street before a hand reaches around Tommy and pulls him into an alleyway with a cloth pressed to his mouth.
He quickly fades into unconsciousness.
GAMEBOY © VS. REDMOND QUINN
REWIND CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
Gameboy has been on a massive run of late, holding aloft his second championship here in OSW but can his reign continue or will it be stopped cold by a hard lesson from the Tutor?
The bell sounds as both men rush forward, engaging in a lockup that neither man seems to get the advantage of. After several moments, Gameboy slips out, peppering Quinn with left after left in a Button Masher fashion, leaving the Tutor getting more frustrated with every blow. Eventually, Quinn rushes forward, trying for a roundhouse that Gameboy easily ducks before cracking his jaw with a mighty jawbreaker.
Gameboy rushes to the ropes, bouncing off with a huge Crossbody that drives Quinn to the mat. Gameboy rolls through as Quinn stumbles to his feet, Hurricanrana…NO! Quinn holds on, folding Gameboy up before driving him to the mat with a capture suplex! Gameboy staggers to his feet right into a roundhouse kick before he’s spun around and dropped on the back of his head with a German Suplex!
Quinn calls for the end, trying to pull Gameboy up but Player One kips up to his feet, driving his boot into Quinn’s jaw with a mighty MAX POWAH Flash Kick! Quinn staggers back as Gameboy rushes forward. BELLY TO BELLY SUPLEX! Quinn tosses Gameboy across the ring but Player One lands on the ropes, springboarding off , THE RESET! He landed that out of nowhere as Gameboy hooks the leg for the victory, ONE…TWO…THREE!!!
Player One does it, The tutor gave him a tough challenge here tonight but Gameboy would not be denied his victory and title defense.
“No games this time.”
Static into a click.
High atop a building, we find Darkwish and Redwing. Their eyes are downward, looking all over the city they have sworn to protect. Redwing looks down at a small device, having just listened once again to the audio of Jigsaw escaping prison.
“Still nothing?” The Caped Crusader asks.
Darkwish looks down at a small computer they have running. He shakes his head in the negative.
“He knows we’re looking for him.” The rookie states. “He has all the advantages now.”
“Agreed.” Redwing affirms. “That’s why we’ve evacuated the Kirby family.”
They stand in silence for a moment before Darkwish sighs.
“I can’t promise I won’t kill him.” Darkwish struggles to say finally.
Redwing turns to look at his partner, old ground being retread here.
“You’ve got to make your own choice. A man’s got to go his own way.” He begins. “But I can promise you that it won’t end the pain if you kill Jigsaw. If you give into that rage, then you’ll be no different than him. In effect, you’ll become Jigsaw.”
Darkwish merely nods, accepting the advice. Redwing places his hand on Darkwish’s shoulder.
“I have faith in you.”
The two men share a smile, before Redwing looks away.
“Now, it’s time to go see if I can answer the riddle no one else ever has.”
“If anyone can,” Darkwish says. “It’s you, my friend.”
Redwing leaps off the side of the roof, his grappling gear lowering him down to his vehicle, while Darkwish looks on.
Little does he know, he’s the one being watched right now.
“KILL THE BEAST”
A darkened room. Unidentified. Flashes of light and a bulb flickers in a hallway outside. Hushed voices, edged with frustration fill the air.
“Well if fire didn’t work then what next?”
“What if it cannot be done?”
“Surely, by Merlin’s beard, some manner of trickery will behoof our appetency.”
Rain, Isaac Danvers and King Arthur. Meeting secretly after their failed attempt on Scarecrow’s mortality. Rain’s attention is drawn behind him for a moment and he whispers over his shoulder to the air. Returning back to the Hounds, he draws close.
“Well, Frank here drowned… We tried fire, we could try water?”
The hubbub his suggestion generates is kept to a minimum as all three men whisper at each other at once. Danvers is quick to talk in a whisper louder than the other two in order to have his voice heard.
“No. I believe we are focusing our attention on the incorrect means to acquire our goal. We are thinking like mortals. What we need is…”
Arthur cuts in.
“A death of legend!”
Danvers nods. Rain smiles.
“Fire didn’t burn him. I’d bet water doesn’t drown him and earth won’t suffocate him. How else do we kill the beast?”
The flickering light goes out. Darkness.
In the dark, movement can be heard. When the light finally returns, the Scarecrow stands in our midst. He has Rain pinned by the throat against the wall. Danvers and King Arthur both lie unconscious.
“You cannot… kill… me. You can only… fear… me. For where your eyes don’t go…”
The Scarecrow is gone. Rain falls to the ground, coughing and spluttering. Only the stench of fear hanging in the air.
THE OUTCASTS © VS. MANSON & FOREVER
TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
The Outcasts defend their tag team titles once more against the Nightmare Family. Can the Outcasts fight through the monsters once more or will this be one Horror Show they never wake from?
The bell sounds as Eli and Solomon face off first, Heath laying into Eli with a series of heavy lefts and rights before a big knee to the jaw rocks Forever. Heath whips him into the ropes, grabbing Eli on the rebound and driving him into the mat with a Snap Powerslam. Solomon quickly hooks the leg, ONE…TWO…Eli just gets the shoulder up! Solomon drags Eli to his corner, tagging in Rain who quickly scrambles up to the second rope as Solomon pulls Eli up into a Powerbomb. Rain leaping over with a legdrop to the chest just as Heath drives Forever down with the Powerbomb.
Forever is hurting as Rain tries to dive onto him for a cover but is intercepted by a furious Manson, who nearly takes his bloody head off with a massive Lariat. Manson drags Eli to the ropes, tagging himself in before waiting for Rain to get to his feet. CROSSBODY BLOCK! Manson nearly cut Rain in half from the sheer speed and power, but he doesn’t cover, instead waiting for Rain to slowly get to his feet before rushing forward
WELCOME TO MANSON STREET! The massive neckbreaker drops Rain as Manson goes for the cover, ONE…TWO…Solomon just breaks it up. Manson rushes Solomon but he runs right into a stiff Bicycle Kick, leaving the Nightmare out on his feet as Solomon lifts him up onto his shoulders in an Electric Chair. Rain is up as he rushes to the ropes, blowing a kiss at Manson before leaping off. ELEVATED BROTHER MINE! That has to be it as Rain drops down for the cover. ONE…TWO…THREE!!!
The Outcasts do it, weathering the storm of a violent Nightmare as they manage to retain their tag team championship here tonight
“THE ENDLESS SPRING”
Some time ago…
Four barely cobbled together wooden walls.
This shack sits at the crossroads of several bodies of water, all of them flowing into one another.
And inside, Elijah Creed has come here for answers. Before him, sat in a wooden rocking chair, is the man from before, still shrouded in darkness. The shadow lifts his hand to its mouth, taking a drag of a long cigarette.
“So why’d you do it?” He cuts through the silence. “Why’d you kill your pappy?”
Creed lowers his head, his face turning red.
“You don’t know what he did to us.” A small tear rolls down Creed’s cheek. “To my sister. My mother. To me.”
The man merely nods, his voice turning sympathetic.
“Maybe I don’t, but what I do know is that you’ve got to decide what’s next for you and your family.”
Elijah’s sad anger turns to confusion as he looks up.
“What do you mean?” Creed mutters. “We’re going to keep going. Trust in God to lead us to greener pastures. He will never give us anything we can’t handle.”
“Fuck that,” the shadow interjects. “You’re a smart kid. How can you go back to worshiping an absentee god after you’ve seen it? Felt it.”
“Felt what?” A now curious Creed asks.
“Life.” The man begins. “Death. Rebirth. You and your dad fell into that water, and you’re the one that came out. But you’re not the same man you were when you fell in, are you? As the river ran red with your daddy’s blood, you felt the power of the Endless Spring. It’s what brought you back to the surface, what carried you to shore.”
Elijah Creed stands tall, no longer curious, but grasping as the shadow laughs.
“Fuck the gods, they don’t give a shit about you or anyone else. It’s time for you to become the god, and wake up those who still sleep.”
TROY SOLVEIG © VS. THE SCARECROW
DOUBLE FEATURE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
The Double Feature Championship is on the line here tonight as it’s the champion, Troy Solveig, defending against The Scarecrow!
The bell sounds as these two men collide in the center of the ring with a huge lock-up! They push and push before eventually stalemating with both men breathing heavily. They meet once again, but Troy drives an elbow into the side of Scarecrow’s head that drives him backwards. Troy rushes towards him with a leaping forearm strike, but the LIGHTS GO OUT! A moment passes… a second moment passes… a third passes before they return and Scarecrow is just standing behind Troy! The Trickster quickly whirls around before getting caught right around his throat as The Scarecrow begins lifting him up! BYE BYE…
Troy kicks him in the midsection and comes down with a huge punch right to the temple! VALKYRIE! Solveig doesn’t stop there as he rebounds off the ropes and connects with another hellacious Superman punch that floors The Hayman! VALKYRIE! Troy goes for a cover! One…TWO…KICKOUT! The Hayman sits up as he pushes Troy off of him. The two sit up and glare at one another. THE LIGHTS GO OUT! They return only a moment later showing Troy lifted up in a Crucifix Powerbomb position before shutting out once more. They return again showing Troy splattered across the mat and The Scarecrow standing over him. THE PERCH!
The Scarecrow places a boot across his chest. ONE…TWO…KICKOUT! The Trickster won’t be beaten by such trickery. The Scarecrow leans down to grab him, but Troy rolls him up! ONE…KICKOUT! Neither will The Hayman be beaten by suck trickery it seems! The two men come to their feet for a stalemate for a moment before The Scarecrow throws a huge… HAYMAKER! The shot rocks Troy before a second knocks him sideways and a third clobbers him to the floor! The Scarecrow lifts up his prey before SLAMMING him down into the mat with a hellacious BYE BYE BIRDIE! The Scarecrow covers! ONE…TWO…THREE!
The Hayman is the new Double Feature Champion as he holds the title high over his head in victory.
Edward Newton sits at the same desk we saw him at to begin the night.
He watches the screen intently.
On it? Live security footage of the Miami Police department.
He sits slightly anxiously. Tapping his fingers.
“Come on,” he mutters. “Do it.”
Suddenly, Mysterion steps into the police station.
A grin spreads across Newton’s face.
…which quickly disappears as behind Mysterion, Zander Zane and Nightstick (who looks the worse for wear after last week’s beatdown) join the Cloaked Conundrum.
All three of them look up at the security camera and stare.
The grin Newton wore only moments before spreads across all three men’s faces.
“Solveig showed me everything,” Mysterion says.
The slightest hint of rage appears in Newton’s eyes as he watches the screen.
“They know it was staged,” Nightstick says, a chuckle escaping his swollen lips. “All of it.”
Zane interjects, “You almost had us fooled. Gotta admit Newton, with the right setting and a couple of bad actors? You could’ve staged a moon landing if you wanted to. You’re that good.”
Mysterion steps closer to the camera. “Your manipulations are over. We have cut the strings from our limbs. Your marionette play is done for, Newton.”
The Cloaked Conundrum continues.
“And so are you.”
Nightstick laughs. “A few weeks ago, you told us you thought what we needed was a team building exercise. Funny enough Riddler, that’s exactly what this was. Thanks to the Trickster you didn’t account for well enough, you have truly united all of us against you.”
“How pissed off are you right now, Eddie boy?” Zane asks.
Newton grits his teeth behind his closed lips as he watches the screen.
“I hope you’re as pissed off as we are,” Zane continues. “And I do hope you still plan to be our special guest referee.”
Zane steps closer to the security camera. Newton can only watch on.
“Because read my sweet, sexy lips Newton. At Over the Limit, when the bell rings on our main event bout?”
Several Miami cops move into the picture and stand behind them, looking up at the camera.
A small army.
Zane smiles ear to ear.
“We’re going to beat the fuck out of you.”
Newton slams the laptop closed.
He rubs his chin.
He adjusts his glasses.
Then, with a fury we have not seen from Newton, he picks up the laptop and begins slamming it against the table! Bits and pieces of it start shaking loose!
Newton throws the laptop against the wall! He flips the desk over! He picks up the chair and tosses it!
After a few angry exhales, Edward calms himself.
He smoothes out his jacket.
A twinkle appears in the Riddler’s eye.
Newton grins again.
It is a plan-laden grin.
EDWARD NEWTON VS. SPERO
One Riddle, Four Potential Answers. Can Newton survive the Gauntlet?
The bell rings and Spero is the first in! He circles the ring looking for an opening on the world champion! He rushes forward and hits the ropes, flying in with a springboard forearm! NEWTON DUCKS IT! SAVATE KICK TO THE BACK OF THE HEAD! Spero landed on his feet and caught Newton by surprise with a devastating blow! A leg sweep from the Hopeful Hero drops Newton onto his back!
Spero hits the ropes! SPRINGBOARD MOONSAULT ONTO NEWTON! BY GOD THE LANDING SHOOK THE RING! HE PINS!
TWO- KICK OUT! Newton gets his shoulder up before the two count!
Spero went hard but Newton isn’t going away that easily! He forces Edward to his feet and whips him into the ropes! TILT-A-WHIRL HEADSCISSORS! Newton gets tossed into the nearest turnbuckle a as he rolls around to face Spero HE NARROWLY DODGES A DROPKICK! Spero lands awkwardly in the ropes and Newton pulls him back into an inverted DDT!
The Riddler is getting some control in this match as he hits a few boots to the downed Hero! SPERO KIPS UP! ROUNDHOUSE TO NEWTON! The Champ gets rocked and Spero drops him with a hard right hand! He goes to run for the ropes when he feels a hand tug at his cape!
Spero turns around to a harsh elbow to the face by Newton! Spero is left dazed and Newton unloads with a leaping knee that drops him to the ground! Spero is quick to roll to his feet and he lashes out with shove before hitting the ropes! SPRINGBOARD ROUNDHOUSE- NO NEWTON DUCKS! SPERO LANDS ON HIS FEET BUT NEWTON GRABS HIM FROM BEHIND! RIDDLER KNOCKOUT! HE FLIPS SPERO INTO A MODIFIED STUNNER!
Spero slams neck first onto the Riddler’s shoulders, Newton having caught him by pure surprise! The Champ covers!
SPERO HAS BEEN ELIMINATED!
The Hopeful Hero rolls to the outside and the referee goes to the ropes to ensure he leaves the ringside.
EDWARD NEWTON VS. TOMASSO VITALE
Meanwhile, Newton scrambles to his feet, trying to get his bearings as he looks for the next competitor! STEEL CHAIR TO THE BACK OF THE SKULL! A STEEL FUCKING CHAIR LAYS NEWTON OUT! TOMASSO VITALE JUST GOT A CHEAP SHOT IN ON THE RIDDLER!
He lays a few more shots to the skull before tossing the chair to ringside with a cocky smile! The referee is none the wiser as he turns back to Vitale pinning Newton!
THREE- NO! KICK OUT! NEWTON WON’T STAY DOWN!
Vitale can’t believe what he’s seeing as he peels Newton off of the mat and flings him into the ropes, leading him back into a massive big boot that sends him to the mat! Newton’s been busted wide open! Vitale pulls him in and rushes forward for a bulldog- No! Newton pushes him forward! Russian Legsweep! Vitale’s head snaps back onto the mat with a massive thud! Newton shoves Tommaso away to create some distance, pulling himself up with the ropes as Vitale angrily gets to his feet!
BULLDOG! NEWTON LEAPS ON TOMASSO FROM BEHIND AND SENDS HIM FACE FIRST INTO THE MAT!
Newton wants this over with and fast! He hits the ropes as Vitale tries to get up- POWERSLAM! VITALE JUST CAUGHT NEWTON WITH A HUGE POWeRSLAM!
Tomasso lifts Newton to his feet one more time, pulling him in for a suplex! Wait! The Riddler reaches into his pocket! AND PULLS OUT A TAZER! HE TAZES VITALE! THE RIDDLER PAYS TOMASSO BACK FOR THAT EARLY CHAIR SHOT! TOMASSO BEGINS CONVULSING FROM THE SHOCK AND NEWTON PULLS HIM INTO A SMALL PACKAGE!
TOMASSO VITALE HAS BEEN ELIMINATED!
Edward Newton has eliminated two men in a row as he forcibly throws Vitale outside of the ring, turning around in time to see Redwing enter the fray!
EDWARD NEWTON VS. REDWING
Crimson Justice is the first to challenge Newton head to head in a test of strength! The Riddler is no match for Redwing and the Caped Crusader lets him know it by laying in with a plethora of forearms to the jaw!
Big swing from Redwing! But Newton drops down and rolls the Hero up!
REDWING ROLLS THROUGH!
FRONT DROPKICK TO THE SIDE OF NEWTON’S HEAD! THE RIDDLER TOOK THAT LIKE A SHOTGUN BLAST TO THE FACE! HE’S SENT ACROSS THE RING!
Redwing doesn’t go for the pin, he knows full well it’ll take more than that to keep Newton down and forces him to his feet! DDT to the mat! Newton looks out of it as Redwing lifts him up and goes for another! Another! REDWING HITS A TRIFECTA OF DDTS TO THE WORLD CHAMPION! Newton’s blood stains the canvas as Redwing rolls him over onto his back for a pin!
NO! NEWTON HAS A HAND ON THE ROPES! Redwing was inches away from putting this match away! He pulls Newton away from the ropes and gives him an elbow to the skull for good measure! Newton seems to be on his last legs as Redwing pulls him in! RETURN TO ARKHAM! DOUBLE UNDERHOOK DDT!
NO! NEWTON GRABS HIS LEGS AND PULLS THEM OUT FROM UNDER HIM!
Redwing is fighting against the Riddler’s grip but the world champ refuses to let up! HE ROLLS REDWING OVER! RIDDLE-BOX! LIONTAMER BY NEWTON! Redwing is in the center of the ring with nowhere to go! Will he give up? HE TAPS! REDWING TAPS OUT TO NEWTON!
REDWING HAS BEEN ELIMINATED!
Edward Newton has eliminated three competitors! He’s only got one more to go but it’s not going to be easy as D’von Chambers enters the ring!
EDWARD NEWTON VS. D’VON CHAMBERS
The Bishop rushes forward and lands a powerful ax-handle that drops Newton to the ground! The Riddler is tired and Chambers knows it! He lifts Newton up and tosses him back first into the turnbuckle! STINGER SPLASH!
He lifts Newton overhead for a powerbomb! NEWTON FLIPS OVER CHAMBERS! SUNSET FLIP! He tries to go for a pin but Chambers doesn’t even stay down for a one count! Newton makes some distance between him and the last competitor, waiting for an opening before rushing forward with a leaping sleeper slam that only keeps Chambers down for a moment!
The pastor is to his feet and Newton tries to maintain offensive with a flurry of blows to the larger man that doesn’t seem to even hinder him! Headbutt by D’von! He pulls Newton in close! PSLAM 32! RUNNING POWERSLAM FROM CHAMBERS! BY GOD HE MIGHT HAVE JUST BROKEN NEWTON IN HALF!
The Riddler is gasping for air on the mat and D’von isn’t showing any weakness as he peels the world champ up once more and slams him headfirst into the turnbuckle! Newton slumps over against the turnbuckle and Chambers delivers a vicious clubbing clothesline to the corner trapped Newton!
The Bishop is calling for the end! He lifts Newton up from behind in a crucifix! THE PASTOR’S PLUNGE!
Newton slips onto the top turnbuckle! He kicks Chambers in the back and pushes him away! D’von turns around AND NEWTON LEAPS FROM THE TOP!
NEVERMIND! NEVERMIND FROM THE TOP FUCKING ROPE! CHAMBERS HAS JUST BEEN IMPLANTED INTO THE MAT! Newton barely rolls the pastor over and gets an arm on his chest!
Newton has done it! He ran the gauntlet and has come out victorious on the otherside after what has been a hellacious match!
The World Champion heads to Over The Limit as the Special Guest Referee, 76-0.
Who’s next for the Champion?
“HIDE AND SEEK”
The sound of water dripping is echoed through a darkened cavern as Troy Solveig and Odin cautiously approach. They make their way inside, slithering between rocks, looking for a way into the rocky depths below.
On the walls, strange markings exist, scribbled in blood.
“They’re here,” Odin says, looking at the walls.
They finally reach deeper, unsure of what they’ll find before them. Their wandering eyes immediately turn to the grouping of Gods, cowering beneath the surface of the Earth.
“Odin?” Zeus says in surprise. “I thought we’d lost you.”
Zeus rises. Beside him, Xochipilli, Shiva, Metis, Anubis and Ahriman.
“I managed to escape, thanks to Yahweh.”
The God’s gasp.
“But not all is as it seems. I looked into the eyes of it and saw a falsehood. Whatever killed our fellow God’s knew how to strike at us but wasn’t that of which we run from.”
They look at each other in surprise as Troy Solveig steps forward, shaking his head.
“I believe you’re being hunted,” he announces. “By Yahweh.”
Odin continues. “And if we aren’t careful, it will be the least of our concerns.”
Zeus shakes his head, enraged.
“We have to stop him. We have to kill him, Odin. The Christian deity must die and with it, the faith humanity hold within him.”
Troy and Odin look at each other, then back at Zeus.
“For once, old friend, I agree,” Odin says, placing a hand on his shoulder. “This problem has gone on long enough. The rate in which people are praying to us has not yet risen to gift us power. Our strength is muted because they see him as the one true God.”
Shiva grumbles. “Peasants. We created The Tap Room. We protected them!”
“I know Shiva,” The Norse God soothes her with a knowing glance. “And now we must prove it. We must prove that Yahweh is a self-serving tyrant whom only cares selfishly for himself.”
Anubis steps forward. “That won’t be proved easily, Odin. He has all the power and we’re the ones being hunted.”
Troy Solveig takes a breath and comes between the Gods, standing before them.
“You’re right. We need humanity to see the truth. We must expose them to the lies they’re being unknowingly force-fed. When the Tap Room was being contested, the battle remained within because keys were held in the right hands.”
That perks up some interest.
“With those keys, we can unlock The Tap Room and spill the battle into the world,” Troy Solveig says with a grin. “With those keys, we will garner favour with humanity; they will listen to the holders of whom you speak through.”
Odin nods and strokes his beard. “By Ring of Dreams, if we have all the keys, we can break the lock on the Tap Room door and expose the world to the truth. Not only will people follow us and help us return to our paradises, but Yahweh will then be visible to it as well.”
“And if we play hide and seek and Yahweh is unknowing of our plan, it will take care of him for us,” Zeus continues. “And then we can lock The Tap Room back up, returning once again to safety.”
The Gods all seem mightily impressed by the idea. There’s a lot of handshaking and nodding of heads as Troy and Odin turn to one side.
“By hook or by crook, you must become World Champion, son – but not too soon.”
Troy nods, obeying.
“As you command it.”