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[VHS like static covers the screen as a Play ► appears in the bottom corner.]

[Voice Over.]

“Sometimes a man would rather die on his feet than live on his knees.”

[A padded cell is often made out to look brighter than it is. The white pads adorn the walls, ground and ceiling in small squares, making for no escape and no self-harm. They offset dull against the black and white. Brent Kersh, looking more broken than before, sits in a white gown on the floor of his cell, his arms tied behind his back.]

[It’s overkill, but it’s for his own protection.]

[The lights suddenly flicker on and off, like a surge of electricity is amongst them. When they stop and our static based screen returns to normal, The Scarecrow is stood there within, staring at him.]

“Have you come to finish me off?” [Kersh asks knowingly.]

[The Scarecrow, again with his hook, scratches along the padding, ripping it as he walks around the cell.]

“Is this how you want to do it, huh?” [Kersh screams.] “You coward! Let me out of here and I’ll fight you at Heart of Darkness. I’ll fight you and I’ll end you myself!”

[The Scarecrow stops.]

“This crusade is nothing without you, little birdie. Don’t you see? Our linages are forever entwined. You are not the first Kersh I have fought and destroyed. Our paths were always set to cross.”

[Brent looks confused.]

“From the moment I first laid eyes on you, I knew the cycle had begun again. I tried the first time to destroy you and failed. Time had to take its course. Time had to weather you, break you down and ready you for me. You’re unlike the Kersh’s I’ve met and defeated before you. You’re stronger. You were stronger.”

[The Scarecrow turns to face him, surprised that unlike when he arrived, Brent is no longer kneeing bound by a straitjacket.]

[He stands free.]

[His face snarls at the Hayman.]

“I will not die here by your hand,” [Kersh proclaims.] “I will live and die in the ring, like my family before me.”

[The Scarecrow leans in.] “They never made it that far.”

[The lights flicker once more as static overtakes our screen, making it impossible to see. When it all comes to a halt, The Scarecrow is gone. Brent Kersh drops back to his knees, contemplating everything he ever knew.]

[Their history deeper than anyone ever thought. They were entwined for eternity.]

[And now he knows why he’s being tormented.]

“You’re free to go.”

[A voice interrupts his insanity, telling him that he’s free to leave, just in time for an extremely important match here tonight.]

[The braggadocios former Tag Team Champion challenges the equally brash and bawdy Jared Beckett to an old school Boiler Room Brawl. Whose gonna step out victorious?]

[The match starts with the screen split; Jared Beckett on one side and Marvolo on the other. They both search for the other in the Boiler Room until Jared catches a glimpse of Marvolo’s cape. Beckett then grabs a pipe, trying to get the drop on him when it’s the revealed the cape was worn only by a mannequin of Marvolo. The genuine article then attacks from the side, leveling Beckett with some lumber. Still wearing his “LIAR” sign, Marvolo repeatedly rams Jared face-first into the concrete wall before Irish Whipping him into some boxes– Beckett gets literally buried!]

[The screen adjusts to one shot again as “The Most Interesting Man in the World” looks for a Running Knee Trembler but misses… THE FIRE EXTINGUISHER! Jared cools off his opponent before Suplexing him on the floor. Beckett kicks at Marvolo for a bit, yanking him back up before driving him back-first into some glass! OUCH! Marvolo crumbles to his knees before Beckett positions him prone onto a nearby table. The “Cruelest Animal” then gets a ladder, quickly ascending to another floor. Marvolo isn’t moving; Jared readies himself…. KING KONG SPLA– NO! Marvolo moves and Jared explodes through the furniture!]

[With both men strewn in a heap, Marvolo starts crawling toward the exit. Beckett’s wracked in pain, turning over and holding his neck. Marvolo now has pulled himself up by a gate, inching closer to victory… NO! Beckett desperately grabs at his ankles! Marvolo struggles, taking a Thumb to the Eye. TRICYCLE FROM HELL! Jared then looks for the Straight Jacket but Marvolo gets a Mule Kick square between the legs! Jared crumbles, and Marvolo looks for the finishing blow… TOUCH OF DEATH? NO, WAIT! Beckett traps Marvolo’s hand in the gate. He flees for the exit! It’s over!]

[After the match, Beckett emerges from the dingy Boiler Room favoring his nether regions. The referee wants to check on him but he insists on seeing a professional, as we cut back to Marvolo, still stuck in the gate… Isn’t anyone going to help him?]

[It hung around his neck like the hangman’s noose, a constant reminder of the shame and embarrassment one man had caused him. He had become sick of the judgemental looks and the muttered comments of passers by. He wanted blood. He wanted revenge. He wanted the damned thing off. We find him outside the boiler room.]

So it is here that we find him, hacksaw in hand about to attack his own neck. Suicidal? Possibly, but the saw is not destined for his flesh today. The blade cutting into the steel of the chain gave him time to think.]

Who does he think he is? He calls me a liar, what proof does he have? He’s just intimidated by my sheer impressiveness. Sure, to him it may seem like my life must be a lie – Marvolo may stretch the truth a little, but he does not lie. Does he think I am a sucker? Nobody plays Marvolo for a fool and gets away with it.

[The blade was quickly becoming blunt and making little progress. Just when he was at the point of frustration, the door swung open and there, standing in the light of the hallway outside was the very man himself. The man who had put him here. Lazarus.

So he stands, hacksaw in hand – a new target in mind. But Lazarus holds his hands up. In them, a set of keys.]

“Let’s not get hasty here. I know you’re angry. Angry enough to use that saw. Angry enough to make a mistake that you would spend the rest of your life regretting.”

[Slowly, the hacksaw lowers. But the anger within him doesn’t. Not one bit.]

“You had better get to talking, or we are going to come to blows really quick.”

[The dark masked Lazarus smiles. But there is still judgement in his eyes.]

“You have an opportunity Marvolo – one shining ray of hope. A chance to turn over a new leaf. I know just how far your deceit goes, deep enough for you to actually believe your own lies. You’re lying to yourself. Leave your sinful past behind you, the deception and the lies. This will be your last chance. Repent. Or be judged.”

It’s for his own good. Twice now, I have extended the proverbial olive branch when I could have brought the hammer of judgement down on the sinner. There will not be a third. One way or another, this ends. It is my job to cast judgement. In grace or anger… now that’s up to him.

[Lazarus turns the keys over in his palm. Be it a symbol of power or good faith, Lazarus tosses them across the room to Marvolo – giving him the freedom he sought. The warning shot had been fired – the ball is in his court. Light or judgement. His fate sealed by his own actions. Marvolo now holding the pen to write his next chapter – in truth or deceit.]

[The lights are dimmed as the crowd is shone in black and white shading. Doubt looks especially haunting in the darkness as Ash paces.]

[The bell sounds and the only way to win this match is to make your opponent tap out! Ash goes for the lock-up, but Doubt goes low for a low dropkick. Ash hits the ground hard as Doubt grabs both legs of Ash, interlocks his feet behind the knees before leaping up with a stomp! Ash cries out in pain but Doubt doesn’t release it. ANOTHER stomp! Ash begins to crawl away and grabs onto the ropes. The referee can do nothing to stop Doubt though as no disqualifications can be called. He pulls Ash back to the center of the ring, but Ash rolls over onto his back and kicks Doubt into the corner.]

[Ash gets to his feet but he’s a little shaky. Doubt leaps to the top rope before springing off for a moonsault! Williams ducks out of the way as he hits the ground hard. Ash grabs Doubt and begins drilling elbow strikes into the neck and shoulder area before locking in a headlock to which he puts some torque on. Doubt is trying to get out, but Ash’s hold is tight! Doubt manages to get to his feet before swinging his elbow into the gut once, twice, and three times to free himself. He hits the ropes and comes back into a BOOMFINITY RUSH! Doubt is staggered by the multitude of strikes before being flattened by an uppercut!]

[Ash grabs the head of Doubt and tries to apply a dragon sleeper, but Doubt manages to rake his eyes! Ash staggers back before Doubt gets up to connect with a roundhouse kick! He hits the ropes and… THE END OF WISDOM! The axe kick knocks Ash to the mat before Doubt grabs the leg of Ash and tries for a single leg Boston Crab, but Ash kicks him away and pulls himself up to his feet. Ash lunges forward for a BOOMSTICK, but Doubt ducks underneath. He grabs Ash up for a snap suplex! Doubt claps his hands together and… THE CAUSE OF DOUBT! Doubt doesn’t stop there! He pins the arm of Ash and pulls back on the leg for… THE SECOND GUESS! Ash is being torn in half as he has no choice but to tap out!]

[Doubt stands tall as the referee holds his hand into the air. The Emotion doesn’t celebrate, but he just leaves.]

[Smoke floats through the screen with the black and white film showing the different shades of light reflecting off of the wisps. The image expands to show The Spirit Walker sitting with his legs crossed and his head bowed. The flames flicker up and down before Tommy Hawk moves his hands in a very precise manner before him. As this happens, his voice is heard commenting in a very haunting manner.]

It’s been weeks since the last sighting of The Wendigo yet his spirit still lingers through these halls.

[The Spirit Walker’s eyes open as a clouded film seems to be glossed over his irises.]

His absence is alarming as, with every great storm, there is a break in the rain. After weeks of rain, the storm has subsided yet his ripples have created other monsters of focus.

[Tommy Hawk takes a deep breath with his eyes closed.]

This new tormentor is the reason for this assembly. I seek your counsel and ask for forgiveness. I have lost the honored gift bestowed to me. I seek your guidance in how I shall find this monstrous nuisance.

[The smoke blows in the wind as Hawk’s skin shivers slightly. His eyes open to a piercing shade of red as the flames immediately die out. He grabs his leather jacket to cover his shoulders before stepping out of the locker room and into the hall.]

Thanks to the gods above, I know my next action. This rat has scurried into his own trap, and I’m going to skin him alive.

[He turns down the hall as the sound of scraping is heard briefly from the other way as the masked emotion drags the tomahawk along the halls taking all of the dirt and grime off it as it goes.]

[Black and white.]

[There had never been such a sombre mood. The atmosphere was so intense that no-one would dare share a locker room with Neville Sheldon outside of Nigel Royal and Marvolo. Those two weren’t here and when we joined him, he was simply staring at the floor.]

[The door slowly crept open and in slunk Red River Jack. He was only cautious that no-one saw him entering, not that Neville would attack.]

[He stood against the door and closed it to, turning his attention to Sheldon.]

“It would be so easy, wouldn’t it man?” [Jack says with an odd sense of confidence.] “To just give up. To quit.”

“Just give me the locket and I’ll walk away,” [Neville pleads, looking up at Red with puppy dog eyes.] “I’ll walk away and you’ll never see me again.”

[Red scoffs.]

“You know I can’t do that, man. Just like you know that you can’t quit on me either. We’re in this together, you and I,” [He says taking a seat next to Sheldon. Sheldon shuffles away slightly, humouring his nemesis.] “And our mission to show these sheeple what the world is really like has barely even started.”

[Neville lowers his head. He’s ashamed, depressed and without option.]

“Haven’t you shown them enough?” [He begs.] “You killed my mother, you killed my career and now you have the one piece of her I have left and you won’t stop until I’m in the ground with her!”

[Red River Jack stands up and walks towards the door, opening it. Before he exits, he looks back at Sheldon, who has begun to weep.]

“It’s never enough.”

[The ring is darkened with just a few lights shining into the ring to show a few landmines set on turnbuckles and in the ring. Smiley smirks across the ring at Stephanie Rose who looks hesitant to even take a step.]

[The bell rings and the two meet up in the center. They lock up but Smiley throws her back into the ropes. She nearly screams out but her foot just barely misses the C-4 set on the mat. She takes a step to her right to avoid it and Smiley charges her with a crossbody taking both over the top rope! On the outside are no bombs as no one wants an exploding fan. Smiley grabs Stephanie as they both get to their feet and rams her straight into the steel steps! He removes the top and rushes her as the steel nails her in the face!]

[Smiley throws the steps down and pulls Stephanie over to the bottom layer of the steps. PSYCHOTHERAPY ON THE STEEL STEPS! Rose is out like a light yet Smiley isn’t even halfway done. This is his element as he grabs her and rolls her into the ring, right on top of a bomb! The small timer starts but gets faster and faster! Rose screams and rolls away. BOOOOOOM! She managed to get to the center of the ring where it’s safe as Smiley just shakes his head. He enters the ring and begins to size her up. He charges her for… CHELSEA GRIN! Rose ducks!]

[She hits a dropkick! Smiley gets back up to take another! He hits the ropes to where he catches himself. She charges for a clothesline but Smiley charges her as well with SHOCK THERAPY! The spear takes her down. Smiley yanks her up to her feet and whips her into the corner. BOOM! No timer on this one as it detonates upon contact! Stephanie cries out in pain as she falls to the mat. Smiley rushes her and lifts her up, but she rolls him up! One…Two…BOOM! He fell right on top of a bomb that explodes. Smiley grimaces in pain at the searing pain. Both of these have experienced the wrath of the bombs as they stagger to their feet. Stephanie kicks Smiley in the gut before wrapping up his head and hitting the same exploded turnbuckle for… THE FULL BLOOM! Stephanie hooks both legs. One…Two…THREE!]

[Stephanie Rose may have won but she’s moving slowly. The referee raises her hand before she falls to the mat and rolls out of the ring. Smiley, meanwhile is holding his neck and shoulder.]

[Black and white shows a variety of shade inside the Schoolyard’s theatre auditorium.]

[A saxophone plays faintly in the background as a cloaked figure is seen standing on the catwalk looking down.]

Tommy Hawk may speak to his imaginary friends from above, but he’s a shell of a man without his little toy.

[The tomahawk swings out of the shadows while catching the light just enough to shine before retreating back into the shadows.]

I illuminated the way by painting the walls with blood to lead the way. Even a blind Spirit Walker should be able to follow those clues.

[The door swings open to the theatre as the cloaked investigative Spirit Walker enters the room. As he makes his way down the aisle, a spotlight casts it light upon him before making its way upstage to where a seat is placed with straps on the arms. Tommy Hawk pauses as he looks at the chair in the center of the stage. The sound of cracking before the intercom comes to life.]

“Have a seat, Hawk.”

[Tommy turns and tries to find the source of the voice through the spotlight.]

“I didn’t say look for me. I said have a seat.”

“Why would I do as a monster as you would command?”

“Because despite my actions these past weeks, I have only done this to help you. Your blindness to the biggest hurdle in your way is offensive. You want to find The Wendigo yet there is something in your way. Allow me to help you.”

[With these words, Hysteria and Smiley emerge from the alcoves to attack. Hawk manages to deflect Hysteria but, with the numbers, Hysteria and Smiley manages to beat him into the chair before the metal arm straps clank on. The Asylum welcomes The Shark onto stage as he has what appears to be a connecting mirror. They circle the mirror around Hawk before connecting it to form a sort of hexagon around him.]

“With that little debacle behind us, allow the healing process to begin. Only one thing hinders you from your goal, Hawk. You.”

[Hawk tries to break free but the metal restraints hold him in place.]

“This exercise is to show you who the real monster is.”

[Laughter comes from offstage, seemingly from the other members of The Asylum.]

“Look into these mirrors and what do you see? You see a man filled with self-righteous dignity. A man consumed by pride and a man consumed by anger. You once accused Austin Fernando of holding too much pride which culminated in the formation of the Wendigo you seek. However, he’s gone and the monster is still here.”

[The metal restraints come open as Tommy Hawk gets to his feet from the chair.]

“Look deeply. Look closely. Look at yourself, and you’ll come to the same conclusion as everyone else. There is no Wendigo. There is only you. Only a monstrous man with dreams of brutal ambition.”

[Tommy Hawk walks up to the glass as his face begins to change to his horror.]

“You ARE the monster you seek.”

[Hawk’s face begins contorting into the Wendigo.]

“NO! I am no monster!”

[With this bellowing cry, Hawk lifts up the chair and hurls it at the glass which shatters showing the front of the stage with another chair with his tomahawk sitting in it.]

“For indulging my game of introspection, I have left you a parting gift.”

[Hawk walks up to the tomahawk before sneering at it while laughter echoes through the room. He lifts up the tomahawk as the plastic handle reveals its fake nature.]


[The intercom turns off as Hawk rips the blade from the handle before throwing it into the seating area.]

[This match is not for the faint of heart as two men do battle in a Buried Alive Match. One winner, one burial, lots of brutality between The Mad Mastermind in Hysteria against The Reborn in Lazarous.]

[We start off with Lazarous searching for Hysteria inside a Graveyard, the darkness making it hard to see as from the side of him, Hysteria lets out a cackle and begins attack him from behind with rights! He lifts Lazarous up and spinebuster! Lazarous hit the dirt hard! There’s two holes with two different sets of names on it. One for Hysteria and one for Lazarous. Hysteria drags Lazarous to his hole, attempting to throw him in but Lazarous kicks Hysteria to the stomach and hits a snap suplex!]

[Both men begin sucking air as Lazarous stirs, getting up. He lifts Hysteria up and slams the head of The Mad Mastermind across the tombstone. HYSTERIA FALLS INTO HIS OWN GRAVESITE! Lazarous is about to get a shovel conviently located near him but instead REBIRTH! No! Hysteria moves as Hysteria throws dirt in the eyes of Hysteria! HE IS BLINDED! APATHY! Hysteria quickly rolls out of the hole as he grabs a shovel, ready to put this match to bed. He begins shoveling but Lazarous begins moving. He rolls out as Hysteria picks Lazarous up. LOST HOPE! NOOO! Instead, The Reborn repositions himself for a counter … DAWN! RIGHT ON HYSTERIA’S HEAD!]

[Lazarous slowly gets back to his feet, exhausted. The former Nox peels Hysteria off the dirt, moves backwards and lands a jumping enziguri across the head of The Mastermind! Hysteria is stumbling backwards, looking like he is about to fall into his gravesite. LAZAROUS CHAMBER! But Hysteria gouges the eyes of The Reborn! LOST HOPE! CODEBREAKER AS LAZAROUS FALLS INTO HIS GRAVESITE! Lazarous still has fight, attempting to get back up to his feet. Hysteria sees this as he gets a running start from outside the gravesite … THE FALL OF MAN! HOLY SHIT! A diving neckbreaker from the outside of the grave to the inside of it on Lazarous! Hysteria gets out of the grave, shoveling dirt until Lazarous is buried. HYSTERIA WINS!]

[Hysteria begins menacingly laughing, getting a kick out of burying Lazarous. He tosses the shovel down on the top of the dirt and walks off. The officals go to help Lazarous out as Hysteria walks out of this brutal match the victor.]


[Black and white.]

[The faint sound of a saxophone plays in the background]

[The back of a suit of armor is shown from behind, but this suit of armor isn’t worn into battle. The three-piece suit is worn to kill the ladies, rather than those on the opposite side of the battlefield. The shot pans to show the somewhat vacant expression of Austin Fernando. It’s been weeks since we’ve seen him without his suit of armor, yet here he stands, appearing as normal as the weeks prior to The Red Emperor’s emergence.]

It’s in the hallway that I see that rat bastard looking like a snake in sheep’s clothing. It takes all of me not to just run out and bash his head in. Sends my car to the shop and me to the hospital, and they just let him into this place? These fuckers must be on the junk.

[The once-arrogant and youthful Fernando has an air of maturity over him now. He leans in on the hospital’s desk where a young nurse is steadily tapping away on her keyboard.]

“Hey doll, any chance you could direct me to a Mr. Jack Jeckel’s room?”

[Still too busy, she doesn’t even look at him but just points at the corner room which Jack had been brought to.]

Fucking squealer.

“Thanks sister.”

[Austin steps over to the doorway and taps on the door before entering with a smile. Sitting on the bed is a man in full cast concealing his entire body as he can’t move.]

“Hey buddy, how are we feeling?” Says the smug shit as he takes a seat next to my bed.

“I heard about your little accident, and I must say that’s some real fucking luck. Caltrops did all of that? Ridiculous. Hard to believe that isn’t it?”

[The young Emperor smirks as he leans in close. His words are barely audible.]

“I just wanted to stop by to ensure that your ass isn’t going anywhere. Although I must say, you look better than I expected.”

[He cracks a smile as he leans back. The monitors begin to start spiking as the patient’s heart rate begins spiking. A number of nurses enter the room as Austin Fernando gets to his feet.]

“Sir, we’re going to need you leave.”

[Austin Fernando smiles wickedly as he leans over the nurse’s shoulder and calls out.]

“Your ass better hope that you die here. Because if I see your ass in OSW again, I will see that no hospital can put you together again.”

“Is that so, asshole?”


[Austin falls to the floor as one of the nurses stands over him with a bed pan in his hand. The Red Emperor tries to get up only for another strike to knock him to the floor for good.]

I stare at his broken body on the floor before removing my mask. The nurses are nearly crying and pleading for me to leave him. He’s a lucky son of a bitch. Next time he won’t be so lucky.

[Jack Jeckel leans down as he lifts Austin’s head up by his hair.]

“An eye for an eye, bitch. Consider yourself lucky that these nice people are here. If they hadn’t done a remarkable job on patching me up for VHS, I would be putting you out of your misery. Don’t worry, next week there will be a fly in your ointment and a Boogeyman in your dreams.”

With that I drop the asshole on his face and take my leave. No one in that hospital wanted anything to do with me. They knew what happens when you cross this big cheese. And for those that do…

It’s nighty, night time.

[Black and white.]

[A faint saxophone plays.]

[In the comfort of his own limousine, the fans cheer as Nigel Royal appears, suited and booted sat in the backseat. He’s looking extremely dapper tonight and beside him is a briefcase.]

[Opposite, he’s meeting with someone, though we don’t see who.]

“Thank you for meeting with me,” [he says with a devilish grin.] “I know that we’ve had a turbulent few weeks to say the least. I haven’t asked you here lightly. I know what you’re capable of and I’ve seen that first hand. I just wanted to ask you if you think this alliance of yours is financially beneficial?”

[There’s silence, so he continues.]

“Naturally, every single person has something that drives them. You’ve said for the longest time that you’re fighting for the liberation of lost and fragile minds. Do you know what lubricates those wheels?” [He asks tapping his briefcase.] “Money.”

[He leaves his hand resting on the case.]

“I’m not going to assume that I can buy you and I don’t want to. All I want is my crown,” [he says convincingly.] “And all you want is for these people to open their eyes to what you are and what you’re about. I can respect that. I’m not asking you to join me, I’m simply offering you a piece of the pie.”

[Again, silence. Whoever sits opposite him opens the door and exits into the street, slamming it shut behind them. Royal sits there, smiling.]

“I think that went quite well.”

[The scene fades to black on a view of Nigel smiling to himself. Did he just buy a member of The Awakening?]

[The Sparrow has been on the hunt for the Asylum over the last few weeks but he finds himself against the Boogieman this week. Can the Sparrow cut down Jeckel or is it time for Ozric to go night night?]

[The bell rings as both men rush forward with a flurry of punches. Jeckel gets the upperhand with a knee to the bollocks as he grabs Ozric by the back of the head, trying to throw him into the cage. Ozric blocks it, kicking off the turnbuckles as he forces Jack back into the ropes. Jeckel bounces off right into a big forearm haymaker that drops the Boogieman to his knees. Ozric backs up, before landing a legdrop to the back of Jack’s head]

[Jeckel gets to his feet, holding his neck in pain as he walks right into a hard knee to the gut before he’s lifted up into a sidewalk slam. Ozric lifts the Boogieman over his head,GRACE AT GROUND ZERO RIGHT INTO THE STEEL CAGE! Jack gets up slowly as Ozric grabs him by the temples, slamming forward with a sickening headbutt. Ozric keeps headbutting Jack, leaping up off the mat with each blow. Jack looks out on his feet as Ozric leaps up with a final one before Jeckel swats him away, spinning Ozric around with a massive haymaker]

[Jack quickly grabs Ozric from behind, dropping him to the mat with a German Suplex. Jeckel holds on, transitioning into a Dragon Suplex before picking Ozric up a third time, throwing the Sparrow into the cage with a Straight Jacket Suplex, JUGGALOCO! The Boogieman calls for the end as he climbs up to the top rope, slowly waiting for Ozric to get to one knee, SUPER JACK IN THE BOX! The Sparrow is motionless as Jack covers, ONE…TWO…THREE!!!]

[The cage slowly begins raising as the Boogieman celebrates over the unconcious body of the Sparrow to massive boos from the crowd. Jack waits for the cage to just raise enough before rolling out, leaving Ozric broken and defeated in the ring as he heads to the back]

[Black and white… Sound familiar?]

[It’s not The Silver Shroud but instead Lux Bellator who sits on the bench in his dressing room, preparing for his golden opportunity in tonight’s main event. His mask looks a tad bulkier; a hint of white bandaging can be seen through the eyes.]

You must be disappointed in me… [Lux’s voice narrates the scene as he looks up at the ceiling.] Your son endured the crucifixion but your Light Warrior has to take an aspirin for a headache. [Lux shakes his head, carrying on Smiley’s beating from last week. He instinctively reaches for the missing crucifix around his neck, before touching his head gingerly—]

“They say that talking to yourself is the first sign of madness.”

[Smiley emerges from the shadows, the yellow of his facepaint the only splash of colour in this monochrome piece.]

“I didn’t say anything.” [Lux replies, not tensing at all in the presence of his attacker.]

“You don’t have to.” [Smiley leers down at him. His chipped paint and the film grain gives his appearance a decaying, disease-like quality.] “I can still hear it: that pathetic, timid voice in the darkness. You lack the ability to take control. Whenever life gets hard, you’re down on your knees praying for answers that won’t come.”

[Lux smiles.] “He always answers.”

“Oh yeah? Let me guess, he told you to live and let live and go plant a tree or something.” [Smiley chuckles and sits down beside Lux.] “Me? When I’m wronged, I prefer an eye for an eye.” [He palms something from his pocket and takes Lux’s hand, depositing a razor blade into it.]

“An eye for an eye and the whole world goes blind.” [Lux frowns at the razor blade.]

[Smiley closes Lux’s hand around the blade lightly.] “You know who says that? The same people who screw you and know you won’t hold them accountable. Take control, Lux.”

[Smiley guides Lux’s hand to his heavily scarred and painted mouth. He places the razor blade into the corner of his evil sneer!]

“The evil acts I’ve committed in my life, Lux… yet still I have both eyes. What do I have to do to taste God’s wrath? How many more people do I have to hurt?” [Smiley wills on Lux to reopen the scars of his Glasgow smile, a single drop of blood falling from the edge of the blade as it digs in.]

“You’ve led a wicked life, Lee…” [Lux says, to a glaring Smiley, whose eye twitches as the blade digs deeper.] “Hurt many people…”

[Smiley nods eagerly.] “And I’m not even remorseful. I have to pay, Lux.” [He leans forwards, begging Lux to carve him up.]

“Turn the other cheek.” [Lux says. Smiley turns his head and positions the blade in the other side of his mouth. Lux chuckles.] “No, turn the other cheek. You’ve wronged me, Lee—” [Smiley’s eye twitches again as he restrains himself.] “But I forgive you.”

“I’M NOT SORRY!” [Smiley roars. Lux simply smiles in return.]

“Your judgement lies with God, not with me.”

[With that, Lux drops the blade, stands up, and exits the room, walking away from revenge.]

[An incensed Smiley palms the blade and clenches a fist around it, grimacing as it cuts into him. What will it take to break Lux’s faith?]

[We have a Four Corners Match at hand as it’s The Nerd, who has been tortured for weeks by The Awakening against the World Champion, Shadow.]

[The Shadow strikes first, throwing a couple of fists are the head area of Sheldon. The Shadow King wastes no time, smacking the first turnbuckle. He’s about to smack the second but The Nerdy One dives for the leg of the Champion, keeping Shadow from reaching the second turnbuckle. He brings Neville up to his feet … DEGENERATION! Sheldon goes flying across the ring as The Shadow King once again goes for the first turnbuckle. SMACK! He’s going for the second. SMACK! Here comes Sheldon again, DROPKICK INTO THE TURNBUCKLE!]

[Sheldon let’s out a frustrated scream, showing his frustration with The Awakening’s antics. As Shadow gets back to his feet … NKO! This is the Sheldon we used to remember! The Nerdy One heads off for the first turnbuckle. SMACK! The second. SMACK! The third. SMACK! Can he win this one? As Sheldon goes for the last remaining turnbuckle, SHADOW KICK … NO! Sheldon ducks it, STUDY HARD! A JUMPING SUPERKICK OF HIS OWN!!!!]

[He looks down at Shadow, irriated. GO FOR THE TURNBUCKLE, SHELDON! But no, instead lifting Shadow up and going for a DDT. Shadow spears Neville into the turnbuckle as he then strikes fast and hard with elbow strikes to Sheldons head. Sheldon stumbles out of the corner, dazed. Shadow picks the Underdog up, Northern Lights Suplex! Whatever fight Sheldon had, looks to of left him just as quickly. Shadow with a headlock! He begins dragging Sheldon by his neck to the first corner. SMACK! As he goes by, Sheldon manages to touch it too. Shadow tags the second. Sheldon does the same! The Shadow King touches the third as does Sheldon! Shadow has no idea what’s happening. As Shadow goes for the fourth, Sheldon slips out of his grasp … SHADOW KICK! Sheldon is knocked out as Shadow collapses on the fourth turnbuckle, tapping it, collecting the victory.]

[The Shadow King pulls himself up, smiling as he raises his hand for all to see who true ruler is. All Hail Shadow as he walks away with a win as Neville Sheldon licks his wounds and begins thinking of his deceased mother, not really too focused on the match.]

[We come back from a commercial break, with the ring cleared of all competitors, including Mike Lane.]

[In the middle of the ring, surrounded by his fans, Nigel Royal cuts a lonely figure. His pursuit of his crown has every single soul inside that building behind him, but he doesn’t feel whole. Sat beside him on the canvas, right next to his feet, is an unopened briefcase.]

[Mike Lane was just here, and it seems to us that Nigel intended for it to be this way.]

[He has a microphone and begins.]

“When I won Ring King, I thought all my dreams had come true. I thought that I would go on to face Mike Lane like men at Heart of Darkness,” [he admits with a lowered head.] “But that hasn’t been the case. Mike Lane became Shadow, a bitter former King that couldn’t let go of his crown. He’s infiltrated my home, claims I’ve taken patronage of his and has been one step ahead of me every single week. Tonight, I want you gentlemen in front of me.”


[Static suddenly and abruptly takes over the screen. The arena lights dim, darken and return, not knowing what to do. They eventually close off and when they return, soon opposite Nigel Royal is the Awakening.]

[Royal stands his ground – after all, getting Mike Lane back out here after his match is just another mind game.]

“I’m glad you could join me,” [Nigel says, picking up his briefcase.] “Because I’ve realized that week after week, I’ve been trying to fight this war between us on your terms. I’ve tried to capture you like you did me. I’ve tried to take from you like you did me and every single time, I fail.”

[Shadow smiles, as does Red River Jack.]

“But not tonight. Tonight, I welcome you to the world of financial gain,” [Royal says with a smile, looking amongst all four of his enemies.] “You see gentlemen; one of you four men isn’t as enlightened as you may think. One of them is a fraud.”

[They look around each other in confusion.]

“One of them sold you out,” [he sneers.] “And this briefcase right here, these are my terms. This is how I fight my battles; in the courtrooms, the boardrooms and my Kingdom.”

[Every single member of The Awakening is eyeballing the other, separating ever so slightly to obtain a little bit of distance. Jack’s eyes turn to Shadow, who’s not stopped looking at Manson. Hate meanwhile shifts between Shadow, then back to Jack, believing it could be one of them.]

[Suddenly, Jack, Manson and Shadow all lunge for Hate, attacking him where he stands. Royal backs away, watching as these pack of wolves take it out on one of their own. They beat him down, stomping the living hell out of him as Nigel backs up, picks his moment and strikes!]


[The fans roar, watching as Royal snatches his crown off the ground and rolls to the outside, making a dart for the steps. Jack and Manson stop kicking at Hate, realizing what’s happened as Shadow lays unconscious on the canvas.]

[Royal opens the case and reveals it to be full of bricks. He grabs his microphone and empties it down the stairs.]

“I’m in the business of those lies and falsehoods you gentlemen whine and cry about,” [he screams into his microphone.] “And business is good!”

[Then it dawns on them. Hate didn’t sell out. They had just been duped by Nigel Royal who finally has back his crown! The fans cheer, watching as Manson checks on a furious Hate, whilst Red River Jack kicks the canvas enraged.]

[The Harvester stalks his latest prey but the United States champion is no easy target as the Red Emperor prepares his defences. Will the Hayman have his fill or will the Emperor’s Strike reign true?]

[The bell sounds as the Emperor rushes forward right into a massive right hand by Scarecrow that stuns the Emperor. Scarecrow grabs him by the throat, tossing him into the corner before running forward with a crushing Big Boot. Fernando staggers out right into a hand around the throat but before Scarecrow can lift the Emperor, he gets stopped by a series of hooks to the ribs before a high dropkick sends Scarecrow back a few steps. The Emperor backs up, before running up, THE REVELATION! Scarecrow goes down as the referee begins the count]

[ONE…TWO…THREE…Scarecrow gets to one knee as The Emperor pounds down on him with a series of hard crosses but Scarecrow tosses him away with ease. The Emperor rolls to his feet right into a hard knee to the gut that lifts him up onto his shoulder before drilling him into the mat with an almost ring shaking Powerslam. The referee tries to count but Scarecrow doesn’t let up, pulling Fernando up to his feet as he tries for a Powerbomb, The Emperor trying to fight out with hard rights and lefts.]

[Scarecrow drops The Emperor down, throwing a wild Haymaker that Fernando ducks under, delivering a a hard rolling elbow that puts Scarecrow down on one knee. The Emperor pulls Scarecrow up to his feet, spiking him into the mat with a lightning fast Meet Reality! Scarecrow slowly gets to his feet groggy as Fernando rushes forward with a hard running knee, Scarecrow blocks it before tossing Fernando into the air, BYE BYE BIRDIE! The referee counts as The Emperor is down, ONE..TWO…Fernando struggles…FOUR…FIVE…The Emperor tries to pull himself up on the ropes..SEVEN…EIGHT…Fernando collapses to the mat…TEN!]

[Scarecrow stands triumphant over his victim, his arms outstretched in victory, that sadistic smile etched on his face as he revels in The Emperor’s destruction]

“What is dead may never die.”

[A scratchy voice speaks while reflections dance in the dull mask of Hysteria. The broken man sits cross legged inside of the very same refrigeration unit he locked Ozric Mortimer into just two weeks ago.]

“But rises again harder and stronger.”

[The dancing reflections continue to sway to and fro as Hysteria continues to sit completely still. His hands are flat on the cold floor, each vein and muscle pulled completely taut. The tension is in contrast to the calm demeanor of the mask.]

“Ice preserves, but fire consumes.”

[Water begins to pool around Hysteria, who closes his bloodshot eyes in response. On what little of his skin is uncovered, goosebumps begin to form.]

“You have faced your fear, but the nightmare lingers.”

[As the water rises, the reflections begin to change from blue and white to yellow and orange. Somewhere before Hysteria, a flame rages, yet all that dominates is the scared stiff form of Hysteria. With each passing moment, his body begins to unwind from the all consuming fear that has haunted this man for so many years.]

[Yet in that place beyond wrath and tears, the horror of the shade still lingers. That is the place that there is no cure to heal. There is only one way to finish this.]

“Rise, my creation.”

[With smoke surrounding him, Hysteria stands to his feet. Fear still grips his form, yet he stands to face it. Water has pooled around his feet, and the last glimmers of flame dance before him. The only thing remaining is the white smoke, the reminder of what brought him to this point.]

[What created him.]

“For your death looms on the horizon.”

[As Hysteria walks away, his boots stamp out the small flames before him. Sticking out of the pool of water is the top of Hysteria’s head, or rather the unmelted portion of the ice sculpture that had been left here one week ago. Hysteria used his greatest fear to rise from the remains, stronger and harder.]

[Yet hidden in the shadows behind him stands Ozric Mortimer.]


[Unbeknownst to Hysteria, Ozric has been here the entire time, and his voice has been our guide. With his final word, he walks out of the room himself, his boot crushing the ice Hysteria’s head.]

[Welcome to the Main Event! A shot at the World Championship is on the line for the person who climbs a twenty-foot ladder and takes down the contract. At first, only Tommy Hawk, Red River Jack and Lux Bellator stand inside the ring – that is until a panicked and rushed Brent Kersh suddenly bolts down the stairs.]

[The bell sounds the moment he slides into the squared circle and all four of them go to work. Hawk and Bellator square off across the ring as Jack stomps down on Kersh who’s just slid in. Red pulls him back to his feet and Suplexes him down to the canvas, watching as he rolls away to the outside. Hawk meanwhile is Clotheslined down to the mat and Bellator turns around, catching Red with a Hurricanranna! That little bit of athleticism gets a roar from the crowd. Lux slides to the outside and grabs the ladder, turning around to see that Tommy Hawk is there to meet him. Tommy lunges forward with a Big Boot, only Lux catches his foot inside the ladder! He drags him along hopping until Jack leaps from the ring apron, crashing down across his leg and sending him to the concrete floor.]

[Lux is quick to swing with the ladder, but Red ducks it and Brent Kersh comes barrelling underneath the bottom rope with a Baseball Slide! The Slide catches Lux clean on the side of the head, knocking him to his knees and forcing him to drop the ladder that Jack proceeds to Basement Dropkick right into his fucking face! Red gets back up just in time to see Brent Kersh leap from the apron with a Double Axe Handle that crashes down across his face. Tommy Hawk meanwhile is up and as Kersh turns around, runs at him with THE SCALP! NO! Kersh ducks underneath, then spins him around and looks for a DDT. NO! Tommy blocks it, flipping him over with a Fisherman’s Suplex on the concrete floor! The Spirit Walker barely manages to recover before Red River Jack runs at him, slamming his knee right into his face.]

[Red picks up the ladder and slides it back into the ring, only Lux turns him before he can follow after it, kicking him hard in the mid-section. He runs him HEAD FIRST INTO THE STEEL STEPS! Red sprawls out across the floor in a heap, leaving Bellator to think about that ladder once more. He slides under the bottom rope and sets the ladder up in the middle of the ring, looking up at the contract that hangs above his head. Lux darts up the ladder as the fans cheer, only here comes Brent Kersh. Kersh slides under the bottom rope and rushes towards the ladder, pushing it as Lux stands around ten feet up. With every ounce of strength he has, Brent pushes the ladder, forcing Lux to dive off AND HURRICANRANNA!! OH MY FUCKING GOD!! POWERBOMB!! WHAT THE FUCK!!! Bellator dove off into a Hurricanranna as the ladder hit the ropes, only Kersh caught him and slammed him down hard with a fucking Powerbomb to end all Powerbombs!]

[Kersh quickly grabs the ladder and sets it back up, placing it over the body of Lux Bellator who lays in agony beneath it. He’s trapped his neck right under a rung so that he can’t escape. Kersh starts to climb as Hawk enters the ring. Hawk doesn’t waste any time getting up the other side and with his young age, surpasses Kersh who swings out wildly with a right hand. Both men start slugging it out, around ten feet up the ladder, throwing punches around it and connecting. They decide to stop and keep climbing, eventually reaching the top and meeting each other there. Kersh tries to slam Hawk head first into the ladder but he’s not quite strong enough. The Spirit Walker reaches over, not experiencing any Vertigo as he pulls Kersh higher up the ladder and eventually pulls him up and over and onto his shoulder in a feat of strength that is absolutely incredible to witness. Tommy now stands there, The Enforcer on his shoulders and he has to decide what to do.]

[Hawk takes a deep breath and then steps off the ladder. OH MY GOD. HE JUST STEPS OFF THE FUCKING LADDER. BOTH MEN HURTLE TOWARDS THE CANVAS IN A SAMOAN DROP, SLAMMING DOWN WITH A CRUNCHING AND SICKENING THUD AS THEY CONNECT! “HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT!” ROAR THE FANS IN APPRECIATION! THEY MAY VERY WELL BE FUCKING DEAD. Red River Jack, ever the vulture, slides back into the ring and looks at the carnage, knowing this could be his moment. He climbs the ladder but Lux is beneath him, kicking out with a perfectly placed shot to the bollocks that drops him straight back to the canvas. Bellator squirms out from his minor restraints and starts his ascent up the ladder. Before he can reach even 15 feet, Red River Jack has gotten back to his feet and made his way up behind him. He’s in pursuit now and after every few steps, reaches up to try and grab at Lux. Bellator finally reaches the top and HE’S FINGERTIPS AWAY FROM THE CONTRACT! HE REACHES…. LOW BLOW! JACK WITH A LOW BLOW!!]

[Jack climbs up a little further, standing almost directly behind him now. He smashes clubbing forearms down across his back, only Tommy Hawk is back up! Hawk is holding his back in agony but manages to find himself in front of the ladder. He pushes it… pushes it…. AND SENDS IT FLYING!! RED RIVER JACK AND LUX BELLATOR GO HURTLING TOWARDS THE CROWD AND THE CONCRETE FUCKING STEPS! THUUUUUDDDDD!!!! CRASH!!! “AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!” The fans DIVE out of the way as Bellator and Jack smash into the concrete steps, hitting them with such a disturbing sound that words can barely describe it. Blood now stains those steps – Red River Jack being busted wide open after the impact. Bellator rolls down a few of the steps, coming to rest almost unconscious a few steps below Red. The steps are wide enough that both men find themselves sprawled out across them as Tommy Hawk looks on in shock at what he’s just done.]

[He grabs the ladder as it bounces off the ropes and repositions it in the middle of the ring. There’s a time and a place for Hawk and it could be right now. He’s about to climb the ladder when Brent Kersh rises. Holy shit, how the fuck is he able to stand right now? Kersh stumbles over to Hawk with a Clothesline, almost taking his head off and turning him inside out as he goes. The fans roar, if only because The Enforcer is back to his feet and able to fight. He climbs the ladder, taking every rung to the top as slowly as he can. He makes it, he reaches… but then he stops. He just… stops. “KERSH! KERSH! KERSH!” chant the fans as Brent stands there atop that ladder almost in a trance. What the hell is going on? Brent suddenly starts swinging wildly at thin air, forgetting where the fuck he is. He finally punches that air so hard that he TUMBLES STRAIGHT OFF THE LADDER TO THE CANVAS WITH A GINORMOUS THUD!]

[“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” BOO THE FANS, DISAPPOINTED TO SEE THAT WHATEVER BRENT KERSH IS GOING THROUGH MAY HAVE JUST COST HIM THIS MATCH! There’s carnage everywhere now. The camera circles the crowd who has every single person making noise and on their feet. Red River Jack is slowly rolling down the concrete steps, thudding off each one as he goes. He finally reaches the bottom and crawls on his hands and knees towards the ring, dragging himself up on the ring apron. The fans are booing, not wanting him to somehow do this. He enters the ring, taking a moment to pull himself up the ladder, dragging his body up it with everything he has. Tommy Hawk though is up, dazed, but up. He climbs the opposite side of the ladder, both men crawling to the top with everything they have. Once there, they start swinging with right and left hands, each trying to dislodge the other. Jack is bleeding profusely, so profusely in fact that blood is dripping from him with every blow.]

[Tommy reaches out, trying to do what he did to Kersh earlier but he doesn’t have the strength to pull such dead weight. Red slips down the ladder a bit, leaving Hawk a chance to reach out. He isn’t going to just let that happen though and does the unthinkable. With some fucking astonishing balance, Jack steps around the ladder so that he’s now with a foot on each rung. He punches up at Hawk, winding him enough that he can’t reach up. Jack grabs him by the head, bouncing him head first off the ladder once… twice… AND TOMMY HAWK FALLS! SO DOES JACK! BOTH OF THEM FALL TO THE CANVAS, ONLY RED LANDS ON HIS FUCKING FEET LIKE A GOD DAMN CAT!! He turns around and heads straight back to the ladder, climbing back up it. With every footstep, he looks around and surveys the crowd, Lux Bellator, Tommy Hawk and… wait a damn second, where the fuck is Brent Kersh?]


[Black and white.]

[The soft sound of thrilling music eeirly plays in the background.]

[The lights are off in a room backstage, a ray of light creeping underneath the door enough to illuminate very little before us. There’s a creaking sound, rocking back and forth, back and forth, breaking the silence.]

[There’s nothing to see at first, though somewhat disorientating as our eyes adjust to the darkness. It’s the locker room, that much can barely be made clear as we search every inch of the darkness in that room for clues. From left to right we swivel, until something catches our eye.]

[It’s a foot. It isn’t still. It’s moving back and forth, almost as if someone is tapping it without sound.]

[The door suddenly opens.]

[Light bursts into the room, burning our eyes. There’s talking, but we can’t quite make out what’s being said. That talking turns to screaming, vibrating loudly in our ears. It’s panic. It’s desperation. It’s pure horror and fear]

[The adjustment comes casually, as if our eyes aren’t considerate enough to enlighten our brain as to what we’re witnessing. Nigel Royal and Marvolo, panicked, scrambling, one reaching for a chair, another reaching upwards for the body.]

[The body.]

[They’re screaming. They’re bellowing with everything they have for ‘help’ and it rushes into the room, pouring like water down a drain. The horror on the faces of those people only matches our own when we finally realize what’s happening.]

[Hanging there, noose around his neck, his eyes bulging and his face turning purple is Neville Sheldon.]

[Neville Sheldon.]

“Sometimes a man would rather die on his feet than live on his knees.”