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The Smartmarks Wrestling Federation presents...




Official Theme Song: "The Way of the Warrior", by Hammerfall


Above the entrance and above the Smarktron, a giant A2A logo (in the center of a circle) will be hung. From the moment the PPV starts to the moment it ends, this logo will be on fire.


Because we in the SWF don't believe in "fire hazards", that's why. :P


Near the top of the ramp, torches will be standing on either side of the entrance. There will be little to no lighting on the stage, except for these torches. A thick level of fog will permeate the stage and top of the ramp as well.




The Main Event - SWF World Heavyweight Championship Match

El Luchadore Magnifico © vs. "Hollywood" Spike Jenkins


--> The path that led Spike Jenkins to the A2A Main Event has been troubled, to say the least. He managed to do what many thought impossible when he bested Tom Flesher, but since then he's been in a slump so bad, that many wonder if he belongs here at all.


However, some of his losses can be attributed to the influence of his opponent, the most recent of which took place on Smarkdown, where Magnifico distracted Spike long enough to cause him to be counted out. Against Ghost Machine. A defeat that humiliating might be enough to crush Spike's spirit entirely, or it might light a fire under his ass, and make Magnifico wish he'd left well enough alone. We all know that when Spike is on, he's on...


... but come A2A, will that be the case?


Rules: Standard singles match.




SWF Tag Team Championship - Ladder Match

Cucaracha Internacional (Landon Maddix © and Jay Hawke ©©) vs. TKO (TORU Takahara and KOJI Kitano)


--> Landon and Jay Hawke managed to pry loose the Tag Team Titles from Wild and Dangerous, only to have the titles boosted from them only seconds later by TKO! A month long game of tug-of-war ensued, with the fight for possession raging across all of the SWF's shows! There were moments of triumph, and moments of despair, and yes, there were casualties along the way (RIP Blazenwing)... But now, after much thuggery, thievery, tomfoolery, and ne'er-do-wellery, TKO and Cucaracha Internacional will finally do battle, to determine once and for all which team truly deserves the coveted Tag Team Gold!


Rules: The Tag Team Championship belts will be suspended 15 feet above the ring. The first man/team to climb a ladder and retrieve the title belts wins. No Disqualifications, Count Outs, yadda yadda yadda... you know the drill.




SWF Cruiserweight Championship Match

JJ Johnson © vs. Stryke


--> Despite who Johnson chooses to associate himself with, it's hard to hate the guy when he's so eager to defend his Championship. After a successful return to the SWF, Stryke has been given the opportunity to take Johnson up on his offer of a title shot. Is the Stryke we see new and improved, ready to take the Cruiser division by storm? Or will JJ add another successful defense to his already impressive record?


Rules: Standard, with Cruiserweight addenda - outside count goes to 20, no throwing your opponent over the top rope.




Wildchild and Todd Cortez vs. Johnny Dangerous and Marcus Ward


--> We've gone almost a month without a Ward vs. Cortez match. Figured it was time for another. :P **


But seriously forks, considering how ferociously Wild and Dangerous have been at each others throats, CC is a little worried at the idea of letting them go one-on-one, unchecked. Since they are both accomplished tag team wrestlers, it was decided that giving them partners might keep them in check, and let cooler heads prevail.


Emphasis on might.


In the mean time, Todd Cortez's submission victory to even his score with Magnifico will not go unnoticed, but it was just a little too late to change the big money matches, so tonight he gets the chance to even the score against another man who bested him in singles competition - Marcus Ward.


Rules: Standard tag team match. Use the tag ropes.




Dust to Dust Match (Non-title)

Bruce Blank ©vs. Janus


--> So, Bruce Blank rules the Hardcore division. This is undisputed.


What was disputed was his claim to be the most Ultraviolent Competitor the SWF had ever seen. And, unfortunately for Bruce, it was disputed by none other than Janus. The Hell Machine accepted Blank's challenge to a Dust-to-Dust match, then laid him out. Has the Trailerpark Messiah bitten off more than he can chew? Or will he manage to do the seemingly impossible, and bury the 7'2 360 pound monster alive?


Ashes to ashes... dust to dust...


Rules: The match will take place in the cemetery of “Parts Unknown, USA”. Anything found inside the cemetery walls is legal including tombstones, mausoleums and the likes. Also on the grounds is a small, creepy, gothic looking church complete with gargoyles, painted mosaic windows and everything else a church can contain.


Somewhere on the cemetery is an open grave. The object of the match is to put your opponent in the grave - when you do, Father Ted Crilly (who will be overseeing the match) will begin to recite the funeral verse of "Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust". If your opponent cannot climb out before the verse is finished, you win.




Mandatory "Book All The Storyless Riffraff" PPV Triple Threat

Manson vs. Candace “The Joshi Dragon” Okimura vs. "The Rage" Jason Von Dierch


--> Just kidding. You're not riffraff. We love you guys. If we didn't, we wouldn't book you, and you wouldn't be getting the huge PPV paychecks to cover your Mansonosity Insurance Coverage. Spike Jenkins has Mansonosity Insurance Coverage, which is why he's still alive and wrestling for the SWF World Heavyweight Championship!


... wow, that description sort of derailed there, didn't it...


Anyway, plane delays allowed Human DDR Pad Ced Ordonez to remain in one piece, but this just makes The Rage even ragier... more... more rageous... close enough. Will his rage be enough to topple the successfull returnee Candace? Enough to survive the awesome power of Mansonosity? The odds are against him in his debut match, but we've seen rookies do the impossible before...


Rules: Triple threat. Elimination style, just to make it interesting. Standard rules.




Opening Bout

Wes Davenport vs. ???


--> Enough pussyfooting around, Wes. We're not sure how you managed to gum up the works as long as you did, but thanks to the efforts of Tom Flesher, your role as pretty face in the lockerroom officially comes to an end. At Ashes to Ashes, Wes gets his first taste of in-ring action against a returning veteran of such staggering, immense, incredible, amazing, awesome, and awe-inspiring magnitude, that we cannot reveal his identity, for fear of mass suicides (because it's so great, that nothing in life will ever come close again).


Rules: Standard singles match.



Edited by chirs3

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“How did I get myself into this?”


Wes Davenport, former actor now SWF wrestler sits on a production crate and mutters to himself, head in his hands. He hears the roar of the fans from the backstage area, all of them eager to see violence and blood-shed. Nasty people, they are.


Barry Jacobs, his long time manager and confidant, returns from his rendezvous with the production team. “Everything’s set chief, the music, the lights…”


“But not the outcome…” Davenport shakes his head, wondering how Jacobs could remain so calm, and almost eager, in this dire time. “I don’t think you understand the wrestling business, Barry. This isn’t the movies; I’m going to get murdered out there! And this time, Stephen Baldwin isn’t just pretend killing me; I’m going to get hurt!”


Jacobs can’t seem to find the words to comfort his client. He knows it was his own idiocy and incompetence that brought Wes here, and caused him to flounder his entire acting career. He knows he should apologize and find any way to get him out of this predicament, but Jacobs has the future in mind, because while Wes was reacquainting himself with the squared circle, Jacobs delved in Davenport’s past, and found that he was not only a talented actor, but talented inside the ring.


Unfortunately, years of living the Hollywood lifestyle have corrupted the charming actor. From cocktail parties at Clint Howard’s to racquetball with Emilio Estevez, the actor had relished the lifestyle, but now, it was all crashing down.


“Barry! Are you even listening to me, or are you going to stare up at the ceiling all night?”


“Sorry Wes. I was just thinking about how we would celebrate after you win tonight. Do you know what the Japanese word for “Screwdriver” is?”


“I don’t care!” Wes jumps off the crate and begins pacing back and forth, almost ripping his hair out. “I just want this to be over with…”


Suddenly, the two turn towards the entrance curtain, as they hear music begin to kick in. Davenport looks up, seeing a spiky haired, emo looking punk in his mid-twenties step up to the curtain, taking a deep breath. He glances around and gives Wes a thumbs up, before charging out onto the stage.


“… I hope the ref checks him for razorblades.” Wes says worryingly.





“OH MY GOD, IT’S MATT MYERS, BACK AT LAST!” Longdogger Pete cries, having an aneurism. King has feinted from the mere shock as Lit’s “Over My Head” begins to play.


‘I can’t believe it!’ Matt thinks to himself as he strides down the ramp. ‘I’m back in the SWF! Finally, Matt Myers makes his long-awaited return! No more long nights crying myself to sleep, I’m back where I belong! God, listen to those fans chant my name! This makes me feel alive again!’


The fans roar to life and give Myers a massive round of applause, some simply overwhelmed by this momentous occasion. Myers reaches the ring, rolling underneath the ropes once again, and ascending to the top turnbuckle, gazing out at his fans, all overjoyed that he has returned!



“And now we have our first match on the card, with…” Pete looks down at his card, squinting. “Matt Myers, who’s apparently making his return after over a year away from wrestling, isn’t that something, King?”


“Yeah, sure is,” King says, suddenly looking back up after almost dozing off. “Hey, I think I remember this guy, back in the Junior League. He was quite the… something or other. I can tell you though; it sure is nice to have…” King prods Pete, who whispers in his ear, “Mike Myers back with us!”


The crowd, for the most part, look disinterested, while some fans let out a few token cheer’s for Myers, who bounces around the ring like a kid in a candy store, or on crack, at least. Matt points to a sign in the crowd that reads, “I


“Ladies and Gentleman! Introducing first…“ Funyon bellows, trying to ignite the crowd. “He hails from Honolulu, Hawaii!” Funyon looks at Myers, a pasty white guy that looks like the lead singer from Good Charlotte, and just shakes his head. “Weighing in at two hundred and twenty one pounds, please welcome… the “Punk Rockstar”…MATT MYERS!”


Again, the crowd response is minimal, but Myers raises his arm and waves to the crowd anyway, a big smile on his face.


“You know, you just don’t see many people wearing a Blink 182 shirt anymore, do you King?”


“Blink 18-who?”


“Exactly.” Pete sighs, “anyway, the first match of the evening promises to be… interesting, to say the least. Firstly, we have a newly returned Matt Myers, and in the opposite corner, we have Wes Davenport, notable for his role in Blair Witch 3, where he played Richard Nixon.”


“This will be a bizarre match up, to say the least, maybe even more so than Exploding Chicken vs. Cyclone Comet. Little is known about why Davenport has shown up in the SWF, but my sources tell me he does have some wrestling training, and if his performance in Starship Troopers 3 is anything to go by, he’ll be extraordinarily entertaining, to say the very least!”


“You know; if you’re going to use a source with me sitting next to you, make sure that source isn’t actually me.”


While the two announcers bicker, the sound of feet stamping and hands clapping in rhythmic motion is heard through the speakers, before a guitar picks up, intriguing the crowd.


“And, his opponent…” Funyon shouts…


As the main chorus picks up, the energetic sounds of Ok GO’s “Get over it” filling the arena, the consummate actor makes his way out onto the stage, dressed in dress pants and shirt, looking out at the crowd, a lump felt in his throat.


“… Oh shit.”


The music picks up, energizing the crowd as some cheer, recognizing the disillusioned thespian as he cautiously makes his way down the ramp towards the ring, rolling up his sleeves.


“… Hailing from Hollywood, California. He stands six foot five, and weighs in at two hundred and fifty five pounds, making his debut in the SWF… please welcome… WES DAVENPORT!”


Another modest pop is heard from the thousand’s of fans in the Tokyo Dome, having seen Wes often in Commercial’s over the years. That is furthest from Davenport’s mind as he climbs the steps and enters the ring, as Myers bounces back and forth across the ring from him, relishing the opportunity, even if Wes isn’t.


“Davenport hardly looks ready for a fight!” Pete exclaims. “For whatever reason Davenport is here, he better shape up, or he’ll be cruising for a bruising.”


“I think he’d prefer to be cruising in his Aston Martin, than stepping into the ring. This must be a rude awakening for the man, but I wouldn’t count him out just yet, just like I didn’t count him out in Mars Attacks 2!”


“Jesus King, you do watch a lot of crap don’t you?”


King nods, while pointing to a copy of “The Best of Longdogger Pete” DVD, out now. Funyon leaves the ring, leaving only Davenport, Myers, and referee Eddie Long in the ring, as the crowd is quiet, waiting for the…




… Bell to start the match! Davenport has no time to look back as Myers charges forward, aiming a clothesline to take Wes’ head clean off. The actor manages to duck and shuffle to the side, surprised by the sudden attack. Myers doesn’t let up though, charging once more, this time, connecting with a clothesline that knocks Davenport down! Wes rolls out to the side, trying to find safety underneath the bottom rope, but Myers is on him in a flash, lifting him to his feet and whipping him into the opposite ropes.


Davenport hits the strands, coming back towards Myers, but is taken down by a Spinning Wheel Kick! Wes holds his head as he climbs back to his feet, but Myers is there to meet him, leaping into the air and latching onto Wes’ neck, spinning him around and driving him into the mat with a Tornado DDT! Matt scampers over and hooks Davenport by the leg, thinking this is enough to out do Davenport…









…But Wes kicks out! Backstage, Jacobs’s smiles, glad to see his client’s instincts kick in, and not taking the easy way out. Barry knows he would.


“A promising start for Myers!” Pete cries. “He’s all over Davenport from the start, and almost put the exclamation point on a victory with a beautiful Tornado DDT.”


“Even though Mike has been away from a wrestling ring for some time,” King replies, “he’s not lost his speed it seems. Davenport, on the other hand, has not even thought of wrestling of ten years! I don’t see how he can hope to keep up.”


Long holds up only two fingers, but Myers smiles and nods, his hopes sky high right now. Davenport crawls over to the nearest corner, trying to lift himself to his feet, but struggling. Myers turns to his opponent, seeing him leaning against the turnbuckles, just waiting for him. Matt steadies himself, before sprinting across the ring and leaping into the air…


… But missing all together! Davenport dives out to the side, safe for the moment, but Myers’ emo side begins to kick in, annoyed by his opponent delaying his great victory any further. Davenport staggers around the ring, but Myers finds him and sends him into the ropes, ducking his head and waiting for his opponent’s return. Davenport hits the ropes, but manages to find his wits before reaching Myers, stopping dead in his tracks! Myers raises an eyebrow as he continues looking at the canvas, wondering why his opponent is missing.


The Punk Rockstar looks back up, finding Wes with a startled expression on his face, unsure of what to do, but as Myers rears back to clock him with a right hand, Davenport leans back...


“Ooof!” Kicking Myers in the bread basket!


“And Davenport finally shows some fight,” notes Pete, somewhat pleased to see the punk Myers quiet for once, “but what else does he have to offer?”


The crowd let’s out an “Oooh” as Myers clutches his stomach, bent over and cringing from the stiff shot. Davenport looks around, hearing the crowd’s reaction and liking it. The actor takes advantage of the opening in front of him and hooks his arm over Matt’s neck, grabbing him by his belt and hauling him into the air. Davenport struggles for a moment, but finally hoists Myers up high, and drops him down on his back with a Suplex!


“Davenport shows he still has a grasp of the fundamental’s after all these years, and still in fair shape,” King points out, admiring the actor as he looks shocked he actually pulled off the move.


“He’ll need more than that to best Myers, who is quick on his feet, and probably more so than our Mr. Davenport,” Pete answers.


Myers holds his back and he tries to roll away and back to his feet, but Wes finally remembers what he’s doing, and drags Matt down, hooking him by the leg for






Myers manages to kick out after a solitary one count, quickly bringing Wes down from his high. Davenport lifts his opponent to his feet, but Myers is quick to counter, sending a jabbing elbow into Wes’ ribs, doubling him over and stunning him for the moment. Myers expertly spins around, hooking his leg around Davenport’s and dragging him down with a Russian Leg Sweep! Applause is heard from the crowd as Myers somersaults back onto his feet in one fluid motion, running towards the ropes and returning, leaping high into the air, and bringing a leg down across Davenport’s throat!












Again, Davenport refuses to lie down, despite gagging for air after Myers’ leg drop. Wes gets back to his feet, but Myers has him in his hold, returning the favor with a Suplex of his own. The actor shoots up as he cries out in pain, but Myers has a hold of his neck quickly, reaching back and attempting to lock on a Dragon Sleeper!


“Ah! Myers attempting the…” Longdogger looks down at Myers’ stat sheet, going down the list of names. “The… Ska Stretch! Davenport may have shown some fight, but I doubt he’ll last under this much pressure!


“Hold on, how’d you get a stat sheet?”


Davenport realizes the severity of the situation and quickly moves to counter it, reaching back and clawing at Myers eyes, or what he thinks are his eyes as he has his back to him. Its effective none the less as Myers’ loosens his grip, allowing Davenport to twist around, grabbing Matt’s feet and tripping him, causing him to fall onto his back! Davenport takes a second to remember what to do, before leaping over into a bridged pin! Long slides over and counts.













But Myers pushes Wes away, saving himself. The crowd applaud once again as the actor shows some skill, but Myers has been pushed too far, as he whirls back to his feet, taking his T-shirt off and throwing it into the crowd, where a young woman looks at it, before throwing it back. Davenport gulps, afraid of his opponent’s intentions. Wes doubles back into the turnbuckle, already weary from the fight, but Matt won’t give him any time to rest as he charges forward, head down, ready to spear him in two!








… But instead of hitting flesh and bone, he hits the steel of the ring post!


“Oh my!” Pete cries. “Myers’ shoulder cannon’s in the ring post, ugh, that sounded brutal!”


“…And look where Davenport is!”


As Myers doubles over, his shoulder searing with pain, Wes sits on the top rope, having easily avoided Matt’s hasty but untimely charge. As Myers turns around, facing away from Davenport to buy him some time, the actor hops down and puts an arm underneath him, lifting him up into the air, and dropping him down on the point of his shoulder with a Back Suplex!


“More elementary moves from Davenport,” Pete notes, “but a smart one, aiming his attack on Myers shoulder! I think our actor has a good mind for this business…”


Myers cries out as he crawls around, holding his arm close to himself, trying to bear the pain. Davenport, knowing he couldn’t last much longer in a prolonged match, seizes his opportunity, lifting Myers to his feet, grabbing him by the collar and belt and…








… Throwing him into the ring post again! The Japanese crowd in attendance “OOOH!” even louder this time as Myers audibly swears, but before he can recover and fight back, Wes pulls him down with an arm between his legs grabbing his waist, leaning Myers injured shoulder against the mat and placing all his weight forward as Myers whimpers in pain, unable to move as pain shoots through his arm. Long comes sliding over, counting

























The crowd is shocked by the sudden end to the match, but some cheers are heard as Davenport rolls away and out of the ring as “Get Over It” begins to play again!


“Wait, what!?” Pete is as shocked as the crowd. “Davenport wins? Davenport wins! I doubted he’d get far in this match, but he forced it to end before it went any longer, and perhaps, saved his own hide.”


“One thing’s for sure,” King tells his cohort, “Wes has a fine ring presence and wrestling mind, prevailing in a match no one thought he could win using simple ring psychology to take advantage of Myers own stupidity.”


Long rolls out of the ring, chasing Davenport up the ramp. He grabs Wes’ arm, as the actor looks around in surprise, while Funyon makes it official.


“Ladies and Gentleman, the winner of this match in three minutes and fifty five seconds… WES DAVENPORT!”


The fledgling actor turned wrestler finally cracks a smile, waving to the crowd, who respond in kind. The adulation isn’t much, but he’ll take it. Myers, meanwhile, slams his fist on the mat, before realizing he’s using his injured arm and curses again.


“Well, quite an abrupt ending, but a solid match up. Myers is unsuccessful in his return, but Davenport only got out by the skin of his teeth. Next week, he may not be as lucky!”


“Whatever the case may be, the crowd isn’t too enthusiastic, but they do see taken with Davenport, and that’ll no doubt give him some confidence.”


Davenport smiles once again, bowing on centre stage, before disappearing behind the curtain, where Barry Jacobs waits for him, a smile of his own from ear to ear.


“What did I tell you, huh?” Jacobs says, hugging his client. “I told you, I freaking told you!”


Davenport laughs, huffing and puffing, unable to catch his breath. “I… just can’t… believe it! What a rush! I’ve missed that feel, the fans cheering, the thrill of winning, I want more of it!”


“And more you shall have!” Jacobs announces triumphantly. “Now, off to the bar, it’s a celebration tonight!”







Meanwhile, in the commissioner’s office…


“Not bad,” Flesher remarks to no one in particular. “Not bad at all.”

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“The following contest is a fatal fourway match-up”




Funyon smiles briefly as he waits for the audience to quiet, then turns his attention to the stage area.


Hailing from Osaka….Japan….


The opening notes of David Bowies, “China Girl” hit the speakers as Candace steps out from behind the velvet curtain. The Asian beauty pauses for a moment as she glances over the sold out arena, then slowly starts down the entrance ramp.


“Candace…The Joshi Dragon…O-KIM-U-RRRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAA!!!”


“She really doesn’t belong in this match” King offers. “She’s just way to small…probably to small to even be in the ring”


“She’s small…but she has a big heart”


“Yeah…but these guys might rip it out and eat it tonight!”


The crowd gives Candace a polite round of applause as she high gives a few of the front row fans. The Asian beauty smiles in appreciation of the warm reception, then hurries up the steel steps and enters the ring.


“Hailing from Hamburg…Germany…


“Hertzeleid” by Rammstein starts to play over the arena. “The Rage” slowly emerges from behind the curtains and steps onto the stage area. He slowly walks down the entrance ramp. Flashing hate filled glares at the crowd as he makes his way towards the ring.


“”The Rage”…Jason Von DIERCHHHHH!!!!




“I don’t see why these fans always give the Rage a hard time” King questions.


“Probably because he’s a vicious monster that belongs in a psych ward” Pete responds matter-of-factly.


Von Dierch quickly slides under the bottom rope and heads towards his corner of the ring. The crowd continues their jeers as “The Rage” mounts the corner turn buckle and glares out over the crowd.


“Hailing from Sendai Japan…”


Akira Kaibatsu slowly walks onto the stage area. The popular masked star, accompanied by the ever-present Mr. Kobe, glances approvingly over the crowd, then starts down the entrance ramp and heads towards the ring.


“”The Divine Wind” A-Kira KAIB-AT-SUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!”


The crowd gives a warm round of applause for the young SWF Superstar. The tall, thin masked man, followed closely by the short, stout Mr. Kobe, quickly climbs the ring steps and enters the ring.


“Japan is definitely represented tonight” Pete offers as Akira heads to his corner of the ring. Outside Mr. Kobe looks on in mute concern.



Funyon swallows hard as he nervously brings the microphone to his lips.


“..and finally…hailing from Denver Colorado…






The house lights dim and Mastodon's "Crusher Destroyer" hits, complete with multi-colored strobes flashing in time with the music. The fans rise to their feet, the buzz in the arena reaching a fever pitch, and Manson emerges a few seconds into the song.




“This guy…” Pete starts. “Has clearly got an attitude problem”


“The fans seem to love him though” replies King as Manson starts towards the ring.



Manson heads down the ramp at a brisk pace and rolls in. He glares at both “The Rage” and Candace as he sizes up his competition. A confident sneer curls the corner of his mouth as he heads to his corner of the ring.


The crowd begins to quiet as an SWF referee scurries up the steps and into the ring. The thin, blonde zebra signals for the bell as all four combatants meet in the center of the ring.




Manson charges at “The Rage” before the powerful German has even left his corner. The SWF veteran fires a series of stiff forearm smashes to the back of Von Dierch’s head, sending “The Rage” to the ropes with a look of surprise on his face. The veteran grappler quickly follows up with a series of stomps to the hand of his fallen adversary. As Manson mercilliesssly pummels away at the fallen Rage, Akira Kaibatsu sends a standing drop kick to the lower back of the Raging Bull. Manson bounces off the rope from the unexpected kick. He looses his balance, then falls to the mat. Once Manson is on the mat, Von Dierch quickly pounces on him, sending a series of stiff punches raining towards his face.


“Manson has so much power” Pete notes. “He just mauls people in there!”


Kaibatsu quickly leaps into the air, then springboards off the middle rope. The Asian speedster hits a moonsault on both Manson and Von Dierch, giving the audience an opportunity for their first strong cheer of the match. Kaibatsu kips to his feet, then suddenly…




Candace nails Akira with a spinning kick to the temple just as the Japanese star got to a vertical base. She followed the kick up with a standing rolling thunder just as Akira’s back hit the canvas. Candace instinctively hooked Kaibatsu’s leg, glancing at the referee as he leaped to the mat for the count.




No! Kaibatsu tosses the Joshi Dragon off.




Manson fires a clubbing forearm to the back of the Japanese star. Akira yells in pain as Mr. Kobe winces from outside the ring. The Raging Bull reaches back to ready another stiff shot, but as his arm pulls back he is treated to a vicious knee to the kidney area. He glances back to find the Joshi Dragon attacking him from behind.


“She must be out of her mind…If I was her I’d avoid Manson at all costs!” King deadpans.


Manson swats Candace, who dives back to avoid his blow. As Manson is momentarily distracted he finds himself on the receiving end of a crescent kick to the side of the head.

Akira follows the kick with a standing drop kick to the back that sends Manson to the mat.




Von Dierch nails Akira with a brutal clothesline to the back of the skull. The slight Japanese star falls face foreward onto the mat. He is quickly covered by the Rage as the referee scurries to make the count.




No! Akira kicks out.


A look of annoyance flashes across Von Dierch’s face as he clamps a side headlock on the Asian Speedster. The look of annoyance quickly grows deeper as the Rage finds himself on the receiving end of a basement drop kick to the face courtesy of the Joshi Dragon. Von Dierch hurries to his feet, but is quickly send down to the mat hard.




“Brutal spear by Manson!” Pete embellishes as Von Dierch bounces off the mat from the impact. Manson heads towards his victim, but his journey is cut short as Candace fires a quick chop block to the back of his knee. The massive Manson falls to his knees form the unexpected hit.


“Fast paced action thus far” Pete states as the fans cheer the action in the ring.


The Divine Wind races across the ring and springboards off the middle rope. As he sails towards the rope the Rage reaches up and pulls it out of reach. A look of shock flashes over Akira’s face as he bounces over the middle rope and sails out of the ring. The Japanese Superstar crashes hard onto the arena floor, as Mr. Kobe waddles over to check on his charge.


“That’s got to hurt” King chuckles as Akira rolls on the Eggdome floor in agony.


Manson nails Von Dierch with a clubbing forearm blow to the jaw. He follows up with a stiff knee to the midsection that doubles his smaller opponent over. He fires a series of several clubbing forearms to the back that finally send the Rage to his knees. The slightest trace of a smirk creases Mansons lips as he locks his arms around Von Dierchs midsection, then jerks him into the air with one fluid motion. The 260-pound maniac drives his opponent hard to the mat with a brutal powerbomb.




Von Dierch gasps as the air instantly escapes his body. Manson hurries to make a cover as the referee once again scurries to the mat.






No! The Rage kicks out.


“Impressive kickout from Jason…the man is pretty damn tough”

“Damn tough” King responds.


Manson gets to his feet, as his stunned opponent struggles to his knees. The Stampede charges at Von Dierch, driving a knee hard into his skull. The Rage falls back to the mat, as Manson once again makes the cover.






TH…No! Von Dierch again kicks out.


“These slams are brutal. I don’t know how Von Dierch is taking them” Pete understates.



The Raging Bull again gets up to his feet. This time Manson is hit from behind with a leg lauriat from Candace. The massive Stampede wobbles slightly, but does not go down from the blow. As he turns his focus towards the waifish Asian beauty, he fails to notice Akira Kaibatsu slip behind him and cradle him from behind. Manson wobbles, then falls backwards onto his shoulders.






No! Manson emphatically kicks out.



Manson quickly kips to his feet, as the crowd cheers on the high paced action in the ring. The Rage, focusing of the largest man in the ring, slips behind Manson and locks one arm around his waist, the other on his right arm. He quickly arches back and sends Manson back hard to the mat with a powerful chicken wing suplex.




Von Dierch springs to his feet, then steps away from his stunned opponent. He quickly measures Manson as he slowly staggers to a vertical base. As Manson falls back to his corner Von Dierch bolts at him, leaping into the air for a planned avalanche splash into the corner, however the massive Stampede sidesteps the charge at the last second. Von Dierch crashed face first into the unforgiving steel ring post.




A dazzed Rage slowly staggers backwards out from the corner turnbuckle. He unfortunately walks into Manson, who quickly hoists him into the air and positions him vertically. A look of shock washes over Von Dierches face as Manson drops to his knees, driving the Rage’s head and neck hard onto his massive shoulder for a lethal Muscle Buster.




“Holy Cow” blurts Pete as the audience quickly goes quiet.


“Stick a fork in him…he’s done”


Von Dierch falls limply to the mat, as a loud cheer starts from the Japanese audience.






The Manster quickly makes the cover, as Jason Von Dierch lie motionless in the ring.














A wide grin flashes over Mansons face as he slowly gets to his feet.




“What the hell?”


Mansons head snaps back violently as he collapses to the mat. Akira Kaibatsu nails Manson with a powerful top rope clothesline that rocks the 260 pound veteran. As Manson staggers backwards Candace slides behind him and rolls him up with an inside cradle on the groggy superstar.














“No!” King exclaims as the Stampede is eliminated.



The crowd lets out an audible gasp as Candace scores the upset pin on Manson. The Asian beauty, while thrilled with the pinfall, quickly kips to her feet and locks her eyes on the dangerous Akira Kaibatsu. The two Japanese grapplers slowly circle each other in the center of the ring. A huge ovation begins to rise from the stands off the Eggdome as the Japanese crowd reacts to the final showdown.


“Well it’s fitting that in Japan we’d have an All Japanese final. Both these two got their start here in the Egg dome!”


“True” King agrees. “But how this match came down to these two is beyond me!”


Akira fires a running leg lauriat at Candace. The Joshi Dragon side steps the move, sending Kaibatsu sailing to the mat in embarrassment. Candace quickly reacts with a sharp hook kick to Akira’s head. The Divine Wind instantly reacts to the attempt…




Akira ducks the kick, then fires a hard knife edge to Candace. The Joshi Dragon wails as she falls to the mat in pain. Akira measures the Asian beauty, then waits patiently for her to start to rise. Candace gets to her knees, but Akira quickly rolls her into a Mahistrol Cradle pin. The referee dives to the mat to make the count.






No! Candace kicks out!


Candace kips to her feet, but as she does so Akira slides behind her and hooks both arms. He arches over and rolls Candace into a backside. As the shoulders of both combatants hit the mat the referee starts the count.








Candace slips an arm out and arches one shoulder off the mat.




“Akira gets her!” King blurts as the referee motions for the bell.





“I’m not sure about that…” Pete responds. “I thnk Candace got her shoulder up first!”


Akira quickly springs to his feet and raises his arms in the air. A wide grin stretches over his face as the Egg Dome starts to cheer his name in usison.






As Kaibatsu basks in glory the referee reaches down and raises Candace’s arm. The crowd gasps as Kaibatsu looks on in disbelief. Funyon brings the mike to his lips as Akira instantly questions the referee over the decision.


“What the hell?” King asks in shock as the crowd looks on in disbelief.


“Both Kaibatsu and Candace’s shoulders were on the mat…Candace got hers up first!”


“The time of the match 14 minutes and 22 seconds…the winner…Candace…The Joshi Dragon…O-KIM-U-RRRRRAAAA!!!





The crowd gives a very mixed reaction as Candace staggers to her feet. Akira slowly makes his way across the ring and confronts the Asian beauty. The two stand in the center of the ring and discuss the outcome of the match. Akira, clearly upset at the result, congratulates Candace on the win as ASHES TO ASHES goes to commercial break.

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Turn your own deeds to his gracious glory

And he will make you see, yeah

Brace up, defend, never ever be

Outdone in bravery!


As the glorious sound of Hammerfall's "The Way Of The Warrior" tears out across the airwaves, one of the SWF's premiere Pay-Per-Views is back on the air! Hailing live from the Tokyo Dome in Japan, the cameras pan across the arena, pausing on the flaming Ashes 2 Ashes logo and the ominous fog and funeral pyres on the stage before pirouetting around the arena. The fans are alive, even considering it's Japan, as they hold up signs ranging from "Spike For World Champion!" to "Wildchild Carried Johnny!" and "Blank Doesn't Know Ultraviolence!". As the camera makes its way down to ringside, we see the ever smarmy smile of the Gambling Man and the somewhat dour, calmer look of his announcing partner.


"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to SWF Ashes 2 Ashes!" Pete hollers. "We've just seen a most interesting match with Mr. Wes Davenport, and a triple threat after that, but now things get interesting."


"That's an understatement, Pete." King rolls his eyes as if to point out everyone should know that. "Next up we have the Ultraviolent Champion himself taking on the only man willing to accept his Dust 2 Dust challenge.... Janus!"


"Now King, all jokes and ribbings aside, what do you think the odds are that Blank will come out of this match on top?"


"Small enough for me to make a tidy sum if he wins."


"I thought you played to win." Longdogger Pete arches his brow at his fellow commentator.


"The Suicide King always wins." the Gambling Man grins back.


"Ashes to ashes... dust to dust..."


Silence ripples throughout the arena as the sombre words come out of the speakers. Before the two announcers can say anything else, all eyes go to the Smarktron as a camera feed abruptly goes live, showing what appears to be an ominous graveyard. It's cold and misty at this hour in Parts Unknown, and the camera shows a trio of parked cars in the small parking lot, indicating that both superstars and the presiding priest are already here. The cameraman hurries forward into the graveyard, looking around for either Bruce Blank or his monsterous opponent, hoping by all god that he didn't miss anything. He creeps amid the misty tombstones and mausoleums, and taken in by the atmosphere the crowd is silent.


That is, until the cameraman yelps and spins around!


With a paranoid look on his face, his barbed-wire bat clutched firmly in one hand, the Trailerpark Messiah presses his finger to his lips to shush the cameraman. That done, he glances around through the quiet mists, seeking out his opponent. With the cameraman on his heels, Bruce Blank moves quietly through the graveyard, starting at every sound of crumbling masonry or call of a crow. He points ahead and motions the cameraman forward as a flickering white fabric is seen in the mist, and at the Ultraviolent Champion's urging the cameraman creeps forward to find Janus' trademark white trenchcoat hanging from a statue of a mourning angel.


"If Janus' coat is there, where's Janus?" Pete asks.


"Don't ask that. Bad things happen when people ask that." King shakes his head.


The cameraman turns around to show that it's not the Hell Machine, and catches full view of the figure now standing behind the Trailerpark Messiah! It must have shown in the expression on his face as Blank suddenly senses the danger and spins around, only to have Janus drive a huge headbutt into the bridge of his nose! With an indistinct sound almost like 'argh', Bruce drops his bat and falls on his ass, only to have the Hell Machine drag him back up by the shirt and slam another headbutt into his face, before he manhandles the Ultraviolent Champion like a baby by pressing him above his head and throwing him into the hard concrete of a mausoleum wall! A look of pain clearly on his face, Blank shakes his head to clear the daze of pain.


And has just enough conscious thought left to duck his head. The barbed-wire bat cracks into the wall above his skull, and he rolls away across the ground with Janus stalking after him. The Hell Machine swings the weapon repeatedly, like an axe, and just barely misses the desperately tumbling Trailerpark Messiah. Blank finally has enough wind in him to roll up to one knee, and his opponent lifts the barbed-wire bat high once more, before freezing on the spot with an indistinct look of pain as the Ultraviolent Champion slams his arm up between the seven-footer's thighs. The bat falls to the ground, and the Hell Machine hunches slightly, grimacing in pain. Bruce of course snatches up his beloved bat and takes a step back, wiping the blood from his nose.




The first blow smashes square into the giant's jaw, tearing flesh and making Janus garble in pain, the impact sending him tottering to one side and down to one knee. Bruce follows up with another stiff shot across the stomach, drawing even more blood from the Hell Machine and hunching him over even more, before the third shot smashes down across the giant's exposed spine. Janus crumples to the ground, bloody and battered, rolling over onto his back and clutching his jaw most of all. The Ultraviolent Champion grins, putting his bat aside and sitting on the monster's chest, grabbing himself a handful of long black and white hair as he measures his opponent before driving a forearm square into that bloody face.


"You think you SCARE me!?"




"I'm the Ultraviolent Champion, old man!"








"Look at Blank go!" King glees. "He's taking it to the giant, how about that!"


"I wouldn't count anyone out this early..." Pete warns. "We all know what Janus can do."


"At the moment, Longdogger, that's nothing at all."


After driving a vicious flurry of forearms into the big man's head, Blank rises to his feet and nearly brings the giant up with him, holding his bat in one hand and the giant in a headlock. He drags Janus over to a nearby tombstone, looking down at the unfortunate soul buried therein, then drops his bat again, puts both hands on the Hell Machine's head, and bounces his skull off the stone. At least he would have, if the big man's right hand hadn't slammed onto the tombstone and blocked him. Blank tries twice more, then screams at the giant inarticulately, and Janus responds by turning his bloodied face and grinning rather disturbingly. The right hand comes around in a vicious arc, but Bruce ducks the Knuckle Bomb and reaffirms his headlock before DDTing the giant right into the barbed-wire bat at their feet!


Janus instantly responds with a pained cry, leaving bloody scraps of flesh and pressing his hands to his face as he rolls away from the bat and from Blank, trying desperately to get his bearings. Of course, the Ultraviolent Champion doesn't let him, this time stalking the giant with the battered barbed-wire bat. Showing a true reputation for pain and suffering, the Hell Machine is already working his way up to his feet, up on one knee in a crouch. Like an executioner ready to end the life of the condemned, he lifts the bat above his head much like the monster had done earlier...


...and Janus' shoulder slams deep into his abdomen as the giant charges forward blindly! The bat is dropped and forgotten as the Hell Machine drives the Trailerpark Messiah back on the point of his shoulder, and the tackle carries them off into the mists as the cameraman rushes to keep up. Blank lets out an audible yell of pain as the still moving giant drives him through not one, but two tombstones in succession, pulverising the concrete against the Ultraviolent Champion's spinal column with the vicious Gore before finally losing traction and falling to hands and knees to catch his breath. While the Hell Machine takes in air, the groaning Blank rolls back and forth on the ground, clutching at his spine.


"Forget wrestling, this thing is going to be brutal." Pete just watches with a slight grimace on his face.


"And that's just how these two like it, so why stop them?" King grins.


"Worker safety rules for one..."


"They knew what they were getting into." the Gambling Man assures his partner.


Despite it being so early in the match, the violence through which these two have put each other is already taking its doll. With a herculean snarl, Janus powers himself upright, blood dripping from his face in a crimson mask and staining his chest red. Unfortunately for him in the time it took him to get himself on his feet, his opponent has disappeared. The bright red eyes of the Hell Machine scan left and right, trying to spot the Ultraviolent Champion and unable to do so. As Blank seems to have vanished, the camera stays on the big man as he begins a slow stalk through the mists of the graveyard in search of the Trailerpark Messiah who thought himself to be the most ultraviolent individual alive.


The cameraman takes this time to pan up and down the seven footer's muscular frame, showing where the barbed wire has torn into his back and abdomen, taking care to not show his particularly bloodied face as all that hair keeps getting in the way. The big man trudges with ominous certainty through the tombstones and mausoleums, knowing his opponent couldn't have gotten far in that brief period where they didn't keep their eyes on each other. Movement to his left makes him spin and lift his right arm threateningly, but a frightened yelp shows it's only Father Ted Crilly, standing somewhat impatiently next to an open grave. He doesn't dare meet the Hell Machine's eyes, but Janus isn't looking at him. Because a little beyond the pastor is a small, gothic-looking church.


With a twisted smile working its way across his face, the Hell Machine stalks forward, the pale light of the sun through the mist making the stained glass windows glitter. He pauses next to the door, leaning against one such window and peering in with gleaming ruby eyes to try and spot his opponent, when the cameraman is suddenly shoved aside and a vicious crash is hear along with an inarticulate scream of pain! Disoriented, the camerman stumbles back to his feet to show Bruce Blank clutching his ribs with one arm, and pulling the Hell Machine's face from amid the shattered stained glass by the hair with the other. The camera gets a good look at the gore on the seven footer's face, and back in the arena the crowd makes a dramatic 'ooooh' of surprise, while some make sounds of disgust.


"Good god." is all Pete can manage.


"Blank wants it over and he wants it over now, it seems." King files his nails idly. "That's some good money in the bank for me..."


Given the difference in size and weight, and not entertained with the prospect of trying to deadlift the three-hundred-and-sixty-pounder, Bruce locks in a simple headlock and hammers his fist into the bloody giant's forehead. The Hell Machine seems dazed and almost out on his feet, and stumbles as the Trailerpark Messiah drags him over towards the white-faced Ted Crilly and the open grave. He hammers a few more fists into the big man's head for good measure, then lets him go and pushes the seven footer forward. With an unceremonious, garbled groan, the giant tumbles into the open grave and sprawls momentarily, chest heaving. For the sake of ego, Blank kicks some nearby dirt and stones into the grave before pointing at Father Ted. The pastor swallows hard and nods his head.


"In sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ..." he begins to speak. "We commend to Almighty God our brother Janus..."


In the pit, the giant's eyes slide open with slowness and ominousness not seen since a classic horror movie.


"And we commit his body to the ground. Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust..."


Before Father Ted can continue however, a hand reaches out of the grave to grab Bruce by the ankle. The Trailerpark Messiah stares in shock as he looks down to see Janus half-risen, and as the Hell Machine's head clears the top of the grave Blank leans over and rears his fist back to drive it into that bloody face. But the giant's right arm is faster, rocketing upwards in an absolutely vicious uppercutting Knuckle Bomb. The blow catches the Ultraviolent Champion right under the chin and jerks him off his feet, sending him crashing to the ground with a grimace, eyes swirling for a few moments before he rubs his jaw. The funeral verse has been stopped as Father Ted watches with a sort of white-faced shock as the Hell Machine lifts himself out of the grave, sprawling on the cold earth before sitting up slowly.


Blank sits up moments later, body aching and clutching his jaw, spitting out what feels like and turns out to actually be a broken tooth. The Trailerpark Messiah's eyes meet the Hell Machine's as the giant turns his head to find his opponent, and for the first time since getting truly into this match the Ultraviolent Champion feels a smidgen of doubt. As if to amplify this, Janus points slowly at his opponent and draws his thumb across his throat with a slow nod of his bloodstained face before slowly beginning to clamber to his feet. Bruce scrambles backwards, trying to think of something besides facing the giant head on, which would surely be a losing battle for a brawler like him.


And so by the time Janus reaches his vertical base once more, the church door is slamming shut as Bruce scrambles inside to try and get his strength and his bearings back. Once more the cameraman is forced to stay with the Hell Machine unless he'd prefer to climb through an open and shattered window, and the stumbling Australian doesn't waste any time in making his way towards the church. Shoving on the door does nothing, even with Janus' prodigal strength, and so he kicks it with a huge boot and listens to the wooden drawbar rattle in its slots, showing Blank has locked himself in.


"Now that's quick thinking." King nods. "Lock the big man out, get your bearings, get your strength back."


"It's cowardly is what it is, King." Pete shakes his head. "Janus gets a respite from this too, you know."


"Not really." the Gambling Man answers. "He's gonna expend energy trying to get IN there."


The Hell Machine thunders a second huge boot into the door, perhaps hoping to jar the drawbar off its slots, but he has no such luck. The obvious point of entry to him, and to no doubt everyone watching, would be the shattered window that Blank had driven his bloody skull through a short while ago. With an irritated snarl, he stalks towards the window in question and already knows the Trailerpark Messiah is most likely hiding on the other side just waiting for him to stick his head through. But he has no other choice if he wishes to pursue his prey, and so the giant steps back before throwing himself bodily through the broken window, crashing to the tiled floor of the church interior.


And shockingly, Blank isn't there to meet him. The seven foot Australian sits up, and puts a hand on a church pew before pushing himself to his feet and looking around the gothic interior of the church. It looks like something out of a horror movie, with dark and monolithic architecture, only a few guttering candles and near absolute silence. Unable to spot his opponent, the Hell Machine stalks slowly down the center aisle, glancing left and right at the stained glass windows and the surrounding pews. He even turns to look at the battered door, then turns back towards the podium at the front of the church at the sound of footsteps.


And Bruce collides with his chest in a massive leaping clothesline, sending the monster reeling back several steps! The Ultraviolent Champion follows up with a stiff forearm shot into the giant's bloody abdomen, and a second, and a third. He rears back for a fourth, and then Janus returns the favour with a massive clubbing forearm of his own across the cheek! It's Blank's turn to reel backwards, as the giant stalks him, clubbing him back with ponderously powerful shots of those giant forearms. Eventually the Trailerpark Messiah finds himself pressed against the podium as Janus rears his fist back for another Knuckle Bomb...


...and so he grabs the candlebra from atop said podium and swings it into the giant's approaching fist! Janus lets out another indistinctly pained sound, clutching his right hand and shaking out the fingers, stepping back a little. Temporarily distracted, he's only left open for another shot as Bruce thrusts the still lit, badly bent candlebra at the Hell Machine's eyes. The arms come up to protect his vision, and the Ultraviolent Champion goes low, once more kicking his opponent below the belt! The seven footer doubles over with another groan, and with a herculean effort of his own, Bruce gets a handful of groin and his other palm on the giant's chest, and lifts.


"He can't be serious." even King has to be surprised. "Janus has a good seventy or so pounds on him!"


"Stress can make a man do incredible things." Pete answers. "Like that."


"Holy jesus!"


That's the only thing King can think of to say, as with his arms shaking the Trailerpark Messiah hoists Janus into the air above his head! He can't hold the giant there long however, and simply tosses him forward a little, sending him crashing down amid the pews in a tangled heap of battered and bruised muscle. Landing stomach first across the back of one particularly solid set of pews, the Hell Machine unceremoniously crumples to the ground with a wheeze of discharged air, in obvious pain. Blank meanwhile is catching his breath, before turning to the camera and giving a thumbs up to show he's in completely control of the situation. Stalking over to the collapsed giant, he leans down and taps the big Australian's nose.


"What did I tell you, old man! You can't... HOOOFF!"


The grunt of pain comes from the giant boot that just shot up into the Ultraviolent Champion's groin, causing the crowd back in the arena to let out the first great cheer of the match rather than sit quietly and watch! Bruce stumbles back with his brows wrinkled and his eyes almost crossed, while Janus continues to wheeze on the ground and clutch his stomach before again, slowly sitting himself up and beginnign to rise. Despite the tears in his eyes and the pain in his manhood, the Trailerpark Messiah lunges forward to wrap his hands around the seven footer's throat and squeeze in hopes of keeping any more air from reaching the bigger superstar's lungs. It would have worked, too.


If Janus hadn't had the same idea. One huge hand clamps around Bruce's windpipe like a vice, and the burning red eyes of the Hell Machine stare holes through the eyes of Bruce Blank, reminding him of who he's dealing with. Unlike the increasing emotional panic on the Trailerpark Messiah's face as he feels himself starting to black out, Janus' distorted and bloody smile doesn't change even as his eyes begin to flutter closed. And then he lifts with his powerful arm, stumbling up to his feet with a wheeze, before throwing his entire bodyweight down into a vicious chokeslam into one of the pews. It shatters on impact, the violence of the move making Bruce release the giant's throat and vice versa, as Janus rolls away and rubs his neck with a wheeze, staring up at the ceiling.


The giant moves first, gripping an unbroken pew and pushing himself up, before lurching away towards the podium. Behind him, Blank arches his spine in agony and rolls onto his stomach, revealing shards of word stabbing through his shirt and into his back. But the Ultraviolent Champion isn't willing to give up his crown so easily, clawing at the ground and trying to find a handhold of any sort, latching onto an unbroken pew himself and slowly trying to force himself to stand. The watching cameraman swings from Bruce to Janus, who almost kneels before the podium and pulls off the wooden panelling. He reaches inside, then slowly rises to his feet with a deep breath and turns around with that bloody, grim smile on his face as Bruce Blank slumps against the pews and looks for his opponent.


"Oh.... fuck." is all King says.


"He must have hid it there before Blank got to the cemetary..." Pete breathes.


"Forget being Ultraviolent, Bruce!" the Gambling Man yells at the Smarktron. "Run!"


For clutched in the Hell Machine's hand is the barbed-wired cricket bat known as the Equaliser. Bruce's eyes alight first on his opponent, and then on the weapon in his hands, and his eyes go wide. Despite the blood staining his body and face, the giant makes a threatening sight as he lifts the Equaliser a little and begins that slow stalk towards the Ultraviolent Champion, his chest heaving. Blank takes a deep and shaky breath of his own, looking around desperately and grabbing a piece of planking that had once been the backrest for one of the pews and lifting it like a club. Holding it in front of himself, the Trailerpark Messiah slowly advances towards his opponent, making most of the viewers wonder if he's insane.


Again, aside from the disturbing grin on his face, the Hell Machine shows no other emotion as he swings the Equaliser back and forth, almost like he was taking a stroll. The casuality makes Bruce cocky despite himself, and he charges forward with the wooden board raised above his head. Janus tilts his head slightly to one side, and then one massive boot rears up to slam into the stomach of the Trailerpark Messiah. With a wheeze, Bruce finds himself doubled over, and without any preamble his opponent lifts the Equaliser high and slams it down into the spine of the Ultraviolent Champion. Bruce's face contorts in agony as the barbed wire tears flesh and pierces muscle, but his opponent isn't done.


The doubled-over, bloody Blank finds himself jammed into a standing headscissors, the Equaliser's barbs still buried firmly in his spine. The Hell Machine hoists him up into the air, and Bruce lets out an indistinct sound as he feels the weight of the cricket bat pulling at his flesh, tearing bloody runnels down his back before clattering to the ground. Body contorted in pain, he has no way to prevent or block the next attack as Janus simply drives him down with a vicious standing powerbomb right on top of the Equaliser! The Ultraviolent Champion HOWLS in pain, his body contorting in ways most mortal men shouldn't be able. Dropping to his knees across Blank's chest, pinning the Trailerpark Messiah down, the Hell Machine looks down into that bloody-nosed face disapassionately, before cracking his knuckles.




The first forearm blow cracks Bruce's nose the other way, making him garble in pain again.




The second one crashes into his jaw, the same jaw tortured by a Knuckle Bomb earlier.


*BAM!* *BAM!* *BAM!* *BAM!*


The rest of the forearms just battered the face of Bruce Blank like a storm, and save for the heavy breathing and disturbingly widening grin on the Hell Machine's face, there is no other emotion to be shown. When the flurry is over, the Australian leans his seven foot form over, staring down into the bruised, battered, and possibly broken in several places face of the Ultraviolent Champion. He doesn't speak, he merely snorts dispassionately, as if the Trailerpark Messiah were not worth his words. Rising to his feet and turning his bloody, red-eyed gaze on the camera, he steps away from the broken body of Blank and walks towards the battered door of the church, lifting the wooden drawbar out of its brackets with a grunt and tossing it to one side before pulling the doors open.


"This isn't a wrestling match. This is fucking slaughter!" King manages to say. "I can't believe we allowed this!"


"Well we did..." Pete answered, though his tone of voice shows he's been almost shocked into silence. "Bruce did. Reap what you've sown..."


"That isn't license for a seven foot psychopath to legally murder someone!"


"Bruce isn't dead yet." Pete answers. "Though he very well could be..."


The Ultraviolent Champion remains on his back, seemingly completely out of it as his vision swims in and out of focus. He can still feel the twisted barbs of the Equaliser in his back, along with the shards of wood from that vicious chokeslam amid the pews. A groan of pain passes the Trailerpark Messiah's lips as he feels himself move, and he lifts his head to find Janus grabbing him by the leg and unceremoniously dragging him towards the door and the graveyard once more. He arches his spine, leaving a bloody trail as the barbed-wire cricket bat dislodges from his back, and as he's dragged he reaches out desperately to snag the handle of the battered weapon.


His other hand reaches out to grab the edge of the door, making Janus stop at the sign of resistance and turn around to find life still pulsing through Bruce Blank's veins. With full intent to choke that last bit of remaining life right out of the body of the Ultraviolent Champion, the Hell Machine leans over to grab Blank by the throat... and with all the strength his body can muster the Trailerpark Messiah lifts the Equaliser from the ground and shatters it over the top of the Hell Machine's head. Janus stops moving, and almost comically teeters to one side, slumping in the entranceway to the church next to Blank with blood trickling between the black and white locks of his hair. Neither man moves, their bodies battered and bruised, the Ultraviolent Champion and Hell Machine alike trying to gather their wits and shrug off the damage done to their bodies. And despite the fact the crowd are in an arena all the way over in Japan - and the fact Japanese crowds are usually quiet and respectful - they begin to chant.



"GET UP, BRUUUCE! GET UP!" *clap-clap*


"GET UP, BRUUUCE! GET UP!" *clap-clap*


In appreciation of the carnage the duo are unleashing on each other, the crowd is perfectly divided between the two superstars. The cameraman continues watching as neither man moves save for a sudden violent heave of the chest or a meager attempt to sit up or push themselves up. Both know the title is not on the line here, but something more important is. Anger. Pride. The knowledge that they are indeed the most violent competitor in the SWF. And with that thought in mind, life returns to the bodies of both men, as Bruce rolls over onto his stomach and coughs before sucking in a huge lungful of air, gripping the edge of the doorframe and using it to ease his way back to an upright position.


Next to him, Janus simply rises from horizontal and unconscious to a sitting position, blood soaking his hair and face as he rolls his head from side to side. But he too needs the help the doorframe to ease his way to his feet, his bloodstained face turning with pupils completely contracted, seeking out the Ultraviolent Champion. Leaning against the opposite door, back soaked in blood, face bruised, Bruce Blank stares into those blood red eyes and pushes himself off in a half-lunge, half-stumble at the Hell Machine to gain the advantage. But Janus' right hand clasps around his throat mid-step, and the giant's other hand grabs a handful of crotch and makes the Trailerpark Messiah's eyes bulge at the applied pressure.


And with his opponent firmly grasped between his hands, the Hell Machine stumbles forward a few steps and hoists the Ultraviolent Champion into the air before throwing him as hard as he can, like a lawndart. Bruce's body soars and crashes into the ground, tumbling across dirt and gravel to fall almost like a hole in one into the open grave as Janus falls back on his arse with unblinking eyes. Father Ted Crilly jumps in surprise, peering into the grave with that perpetually white-faced, horrified look before glancing back at the staring giant, who simply points a shaking right hand at him. Father Ted quickly crosses himself and hopes this will be the end as he begins the recital again.


"In sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ, we commend to Almighty God our brother Bruce..."


Deep in the grave, Bruce hears and recognises the pastor's voice and wills his battered and aching body to move. And slowly, painfully, it begins to respond to his commands.


"And we commit his body to the ground. Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. The Lord bless him and keep him, the Lord make his face to shine upon him, and be gracious unto him..."


This isn't over yet. Not by a long shot. The deep, Southern snarl of the Ultraviolent Champion startles Father Ted right out of his funeral rite as his hands grab the edge of the hole and he begins to pull himself out. The crowd is hushed into startled silence as the Trailerpark Messiah crawls out of the grave, looking almost like one of the undead as he drags himself across the ground and begins to push himself to his feet. Janus continues to sit, his wide and red-eyed gaze unerringly watching Blank as he forces himself to stand, and the Hell Machine does likewise, seeking his vertical base to better take on this opponent that refuses to stay dead. Like a zombie, Bruce takes a few staggering steps forward. Then he sucks in a great breath of air and lets out a guttural yell.




The Hell Machine takes that as an open invitation and steps forward, cracking his knuckles into the palm of his hand, but he underestimates the spirit that still burns in the bloodied frame of Bruce Blank. The Ultraviolent Champion pushes himself into a lurching run like a professional footballer, driving his shoulder deep into the slashed abdomen of his seven foot opponent, driving him back with a mixture of momentum and sheer willpower, carrying him back into the church, down the aisle, and straight THROUGH the podium in a shower of splinters! The crowd in the arena roars for the sheer strength and violence of these two men, even as they both collapse straight back to the ground as if dead.


"JESUS CHRIST!" King yelps. "Bruce should be dead! Hell! Janus should be dead! How are they even continuing to FIGHT!?"


"Determination." Pete tries to reason. "Neither man wants to lose..."


"Stupidity!" the Gambling Man answers. "The longer they stay up, the more they'll try to mangle each other. There might not be a winner at all if neither of them can toss the other into the grave!"


"You almost sound concerned, King." Longdogger Pete answers, raising his eyebrows.


"Concerned hell! If neither man wins, I lose a shitload of money on this match!"


The match has been hell on both men, even at this point. From start to finish they have hit each other with anything they could get their hands on. Bloodied and brutalised, this match has to end somehow, and soon. Despite Bruce's claims to be the premiere Ultraviolent Champion, and despite Janus' ungodly strength and constitution, the human body can only take so much. The camera focuses on the two men sprawled in their own blood and shards of wood, the Trailerpark Messiah's arm across the Hell Machine's chest in what would most likely be an academic pin were this a normal match. But it isn't, and that makes all the difference. Janus attempts to suddenly sit up, but barely reaches halfway before he slumps back to the ground with a wheeze, rolling over on his stomach to get his arms under himself and attempt to arise that way.


Next to him, Blank just rolls away, stopping near one of the pews and gripping it like a lifeline to try and drag himself upright. The Hell Machine works his way to one knee, but the Ultraviolent Champion isn't far behind, leaning against the wooden pews of the church for support as he pulls himself to a shakily upright position. Soon, Janus is upright as well, but the way both men stumble and waver slightly on their feet shows this chaos is definitely taking its toll. Across the intervening space, the red eyes of the Hell Machine, set in that bloodied face and black and white hair, stare across into the dirty, bruised and battered gaze of Bruce Blank. This time, it's the Trailerpark Messiah's turn to grin disturbingly, almost as disturbingly as the grin stamped on Janus' face. In return, the giant simply draws his thumb across his throat with a slow nod of the head, and they step towards each other amd straight into a simple collar-and-elbow tieup.


"...wrestling? At THIS point in the match?" the Gambling Man asks incredulously. "Are they nuts?"


"Well... Janus is, we've seen his reports... Blank? Probably just the blood loss." Pete reasons.


Despite the exhaustion coursing through their veins, the Hell Machine still has superior upper body strength when it comes to grapples, and so he begins to drive Blank down to his knees. The Trailerpark Messiah has been in this position before, and he lashes out with a fist to the Great Southern Land. The low blow hits home, but Janus' thick boot crashes into his gut a moment later, and both men stagger back a little, doubled over. Maybe it's Bruce's beer gut, or that a blow to the naughty bits bloody well hurts, but the Ultraviolent Champion recovers first and shoves the Hell Machine's head between his legs into a standing headscissors, and attempts to lift the big man for a powerbomb.


If he'd tried the move any earlier in the match, he probably would have been successful. But at this point his body is just too tired, and the three hundred and sixty pounds too great for him to hoist up all the way, so he tries to lift the giant up at least enough for a piledriver. But the Hell Machine would rather his head NOT meet the tiled floor of the gothic little church, and he straightens up with a surge of muscular power, backdropping Blank onto the hard floor and stumbling forward to lean on the pews before glancing over his shoulder, breathing heavily. Bruce arches his back on impact, his already punished torso crying out for relief even if he isn't. But he flops onto his belly, twitching like a beached fish, and starts trying to push his body back to a standing position.


"You... you can't... you..." he gasps out, getting to one knee. "You can't beat me....I'm the most... most..."


One can almost see Janus ellipse, his lips moving but no sound coming out as he watches Blank struggle to his feet. And then the Hell Machine shakes his head slowly, an almost compassionate glimmer in his eyes as the Ultraviolent Champion stumbles towards him, lifting his fists up in preparation to continue the fight. On the first step, he almost falls over again, but he checks himself and continues moving forward, staring straight into those blood red eyes without any fear, most likely because of the blood loss. The Hell Machine seems impressed, tilting his head to one side almost curiously as he leans on the pew, watching the Trailerpark Messiah approach. He claps a great hand down on Blank's shoulder, leaning down to whisper into his ear.


"Fuck you."


The bloodied headbutt that crashes into Bruce's face almost makes the Hell Machine reel back as well, but he keeps his stance as fury burns through him, fury that this man thinks he cannot be beaten. Grabbing Bruce by the front of the shirt with both hands, Janus storms to one of the windows on the left side of the chruch, and swings the Ultraviolent Champion around like a doll, sending him back first into the glass! The window shatters and Bruce howls in pain, but Janus isn't done as he drags the Trailerpark Messiah across the church and drives him headfirst through the opposing window!




The giant's roar seems to reverberate off the walls as he drags Bruce to the next window on the right hand side. Again, he drives Blank's body through the glass spine first, before rampaging to the opposite side of the church and smashing his face through the stained glass window there as well! The blood courses down the Ultraviolent Champion's face and chest in rivulets as the Hell Machine drags him out of the broken window and hauls him towards the door, or more appropriately the unbroken window on the right hand side. He looks towards the left-hand side and the window that he came through to first enter the church, then down at Blank.




Bruce doesn't even cry out as his body is propelled like a living missile through the stained glass and collapses in a crumpled heap on the graveyard dirt and gravel. The blood around him is like a small river, and Father Ted who stands nearby the grave almost looks ready to faint. Like a stalking beast, the Hell Machine comes stalking out of the doorway to the church, watching the Ultraviolent Champion's body twitch and shudder in absolute agony, cut in a thousand places by glass and still somehow holding together. The Trailerpark Messiah doesn't even have the strength to flop onto his back as the giant moves towards him. Back in the arena, everyone is quiet and watching in near-awe, some disgusted, some shocked, all unable to tear their eyes away.


"Sweet jesus." is all Pete can manage.


"...." King can't even speak, he looks pale enough to be sick.


Scooping up the bloody body and holding it over his torso in the familiar position for the ADF II, the Hell Machine makes his way towards the grave, feeling the sanguine fluid stain his torso and gloves as he grips Blank's body. As he approaches however, some slim glimmer of life remains in the near-corpse of the Ultraviolent Champion, and he begins to kick his legs and squirm, very weakly. The fact any life exists at all in the Trailerpark Messiah's battered and gore-stained shell is enough to bring Janus pause for several moments, and a jerky kick of one leg nearly releases Bruce from his grasp. Still held by the head, Blank finds his body arched awkwardly, almost in a dragon sleeper position.


Reaching back with bloodstained hands, he attempts to grab any part of Janus he can, to try and lift the giant, to try and fight his way free any way he can. Gasping for air, the blood dripping from his mullet, his wide eyes stare upwards at the sky until his whole body is wrenched back off the ground with frightening ease into an inverted suplex. The muscular and anger-powered Hell Machine stumbles on his feet for several moments before reaffirming his position, and Bruce Blank finds himself hanging in the air, looking upside down into that bloodstained face. And because he can see this, he knows exactly what position he's in.


"This is how you do it right, Bruce."




Rage Unleashed.


Through luck, compassion, or perhaps simply poor aim, Bruce's head hits the ground at the edge of the grave. His entire body hangs vertical for several moments before crumpling into a heap and falling into the hole lifelessly. In the arena, everyone is silent, as are the two announcers as Janus peers almost inquisitively over the edge of the grave from where he's seated, before turning his bloodied gaze upward to the almost gibbering, wide-eyed Father Ted. The pastor crosses himself several times upon seeing those blood-red eyes staring a hole through him, and he recites the funeral rite hastily, unable to bear the pressure.


"In sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ, we commend to Almighty God our brother Bruce, and we commit his body to the ground. Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. The Lord bless him and keep him, the Lord make his face to shine upon him and be gracious unto him and give him peace."


He looks down at the grave, then at the camera, then at the Hell Machine. He hesitates for a moment, and then looks back down into the grave where Bruce hasn't moved an inch the entire time, before swallowing hard and saying the final part of the funeral rite.




The entire arena sits silent as the camera lingers on Bruce Blank, then turns to the Hell Machine as he waveringly comes to his feet. The cameraman is barelu brave enough to follow the staggering, monsterous Australian to a nearby statue of a mourning angel, where his trenchcoat still hands, and he draws it off to wipe the blood from his body and wrap the stained white fabric around himself. The camera lingers more on the broken body of Bruce Blank before the attention returns to the arena, which sits in ominous silence. Much like the pastor had in his sincerity, and Janus mockingly, both King and Pete cross themselves after watching the match, then take deep breaths and turn to address the camera. Longdogger seems to keep better composure than his partner, who looks rather like he wants to be sick.


"And Bruce Blank.... finds himself... bested at his own match... by Janus." Pete manages. "He put up a fight but.. but..."


"Janus just fucking slaughtered him." the pale Gambling Man says. "Can we go to commercial? Please?"


"When we get back ladies and gentlemen..." the Longdogger says. "We'll have rivalries abound as Wildchild teams up with Todd Cortez to take on... Johnny Dangerous and Marcus Ward..."


The camera then returns to the feed at the graveyard, as the Hell Machine waveringly stumbles away from the mourning angel statue and back towards the grave. His long black and white hair hides his face, as he looks down into the pit with that sanguine-stained face at the body of Bruce Blank. And almost mockingly, he slowly crosses himself before speaking in that low, quiet voice.


"Ashes to ashes... dust to dust."

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"Coming up next here at Ashes 2 Ashes, we're going to see four men take part in a tag team match where the only thing at stake is pride. The beloved tag team of Wild & Dangerous has cut ties, and tonight, Wildchild and Johnny Dangerous will be on opposite sides of the ring for the first time in their SWF history, and each man will have a new partner to work with!. For Dangerous, he's paired up with the powerhouse known as “The Mastermind,” Marcus Ward, while Wildchild will share a corner with a man he's never seen eye-to-eye with, the popular "Urban Legend" himself, Todd Cortez!"


"Right there, MacDougal; you just gave away the finish to this contest," says the Suicide King, apparently reading too much into Longdogger Pete's pre-match introduction.


"How so?"


"You've all but said that Cortez and Wildchild will not be able to work together, and seeing as how this is a TAG TEAM match, that's sort of a requirement."


"You've thought hard about that in the thirty seconds since I spoke, huh?"


"That's why I'm the King, baby!"


"Well, needless to say, it is a proven fact that Wildchild has not been high on Cortez since his arrival in the company last year. Both Hollywood Boulevard and Martial Law, two tag teams that Cortez was a part of, had their grievances with Wild and Dangerous. Tonight, it's going to have to be water under the bridge though, otherwise it's going to be a cakewalk for Ward and Dangerous."


"Ward and Dangerous...Ward & Dangerous...you know, Pete, we could see the evolution of the NEW W&D here tonight! I’m sure that Dangerous could do a lot better with a brick house like Ward rather than that epileptic superball." quips King, with obvious disdain for the Caribbean superstar.


"By the same token then, King, perhaps Wildchild and Cortez will surprise you with their efforts."






The camera shifts its focus to Funyon inside the ring, as he begins his ring introductions: "Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is a tag team matchup, scheduled for one fall!"








The opening of Nas' "Mastermind" immediately follows Funyon's announcement, and as the song carries on, a cloaked figure appears on the ramp. Though his face is hidden, the fans know exactly who it is, and begin to jeer loudly, their opinion of this person only increasing once his head is lifted.


"I think it's evident by the crowd that Marcus Ward is the only one who thinks highly of himself."


Ward heads down to the ring, ignoring the catcalls of the Japanese fans as he climbs up the ring steps and onto the apron, turning to give them a look at (self-proclaimed) greatness.


"Introducing first, he hails from Bavaria! Weighing in tonight at two hundred forty-nine pounds, this is "The Mastermind,” MAAAAARRCUS WAAAAAAAAAARRRRRD!"


Upon hearing his name called out by the SWF's longtime announcer, Ward climbs up onto the second rope and pounds his chest, then taps his forehead and nods to the crowd, once again showing off despite their rejection of him. Ward gets down from the ropes and removes his entrance attire as his song fades out, quickly replaced by that of his partner:




The entranceway fills with smoke, and though some fans pop upon hearing the familiar theme, they're drowned out by thunderous boos, thanks to the former World Champion's attitude. Through the clouds of fog comes the trench-coat clad superstar, moving slowly to the ring with a look of stern focus emblazoned across his face.


"Look at that determination, Peter. Tonight, that man right there is going to show that ungrateful ingrate Wildchild who carried the team of Wild & Dangerous!"


"Ungrateful ingrate? Aren't they pretty much one and the same?" asks LDP.


"...do you ALWAYS have to correct me? You call it your way, I'll call it mine."


Johnny climbs through the ropes, walking through the ring and right past his partner. He ascends the ropes and raises both arms, but the pose that once elicited adulation is now met with resounding hatred.


"His partner hails from Las Vegas, Nevada. Weighing in tonight at two hundred, seventeen pounds, he is ‘The Barracuda,’ JOHNNY DAAAAANGEROUS!" Johnny steps down from the rope and removes his shades and trench coat, handing them over the ropes to the ring attendant. He comes over to Ward, who immediately begins talking to him, possibly going over strategy...but Johnny's attention is quickly diverted to the entranceway, as "Bouncin' Back" is cued up, and causes the fans to come alive:










“Listen to the crowd!” exclaims Pete. “The Japanese fans certainly love this superstar!"


"They also think raw fish is a delicacy, so what do they know?"













After the song plays for a minute or two, Wildchild makes his grand entrance, coming through the curtain arm-in-arm with Melissa Fasaki and stopping on the ramp, amidst the funeral pyres. The cameras zoom in as the light from the fire illuminates the revered grappler, but the fires burning on the entranceway are nothing compared to the fire in Wildchild's eyes, as he glares forward towards the ring, and more specifically a man he once considered a friend.


“And their opponents!” booms Funyon, “Introducing first, being accompanied to the ring by Melissa Fasaki and hailing from the Bahamas, weighing in tonight at two hundred fourteen pounds: the WIIIIILDCHIIIIILD!”


Wildchild makes his way down the aisle, and despite his legions of fans leaning over the rail begging for a hand slap, he keeps his eyes on the ring. Once at ringside, Wildchild barely acknowledges his girlfriend before he somersaults between the bottom and middle ropes and rolls to his feet in front of Johnny, locking eyes with his ally-turned-rival in a tense pre-match moment.


“It's amazing to think that after everything these two have been through that tonight, live from the Tokyo Dome, it has broken down into a battle like this,” remarks Pete. Wildchild and Johnny continue their stare down, but when Ward interjects with some choice words, it only serves to anger Wildchild. He steps back, ready to go, but Jefferson Harding, tonight's presiding official, blocks the men from getting at one another. Still, Wildchild is all too eager to get things going, so it's only appropriate that the theme song of the final participant, his partner, hits.




As Mos Def's catchy rap anthem echoes through the Tokyo Dome, the crowd again comes alive for the hard-hitting, streetwise superstar that will be in Wildchild's corner tonight. Megan Skye enters first, dressed in black pants and a white halter-top. She gets a good amount of cheers from the fans, especially the young males, but it's the person she reveals who gets the quite the reaction.


"Listen to these fans, King!"


"Do I have a choice? Even with earplugs these damn people are giving me a migraine!” Todd Cortez steps out onto the entranceway, and makes his way down to the ring alongside his lady friend. Todd tilts his sunglasses and peers upward towards the ring, as he sees three men he's had previous interactions with all standing in the ring.


"Cortez could be considered the black sheep of this contest, given his history with all the competitors. Ward holds a recent victory over him, and just as we mentioned before, Wild & Dangerous were never big Cortez supporters, even when they were on the "same side" so to speak. It's taken Wildchild quite a bit of pride-swallowing to be able to team with him tonight, so you can imagine what Johnny is thinking on the opposite side of the ring."


Cortez gets to ringside and removes his bulletproof vest and shades, handing them to the ring attendant. He then kisses Megan on the cheek, and finally takes his cross and kisses it for luck, looking up towards the heavens in respect for his deceased brother before climbing the steps and entering the ring. As the commotion of the entrances dies down, the crowd settles back into their seats, ready for the inevitable ruckus. Both teams converse in their respective corners, and during their exchanges turn and glare at the opposition. Wildchild and Cortez argue over who will start for them, and Cortez reluctantly ducks out to the apron, leaving Wildchild to get things underway.


“Looks like things will be starting off quickly tonight, as the famed speedster Wildchild starts off for his team. You know, King, both these men are accustomed to leading matches off in tag team competition; what do you suppose that Wildchild said to Todd Cortez to talk him into starting the match on the apron?”


“I can’t say that I care,” replies King.


Wildchild readies himself for action, but Dangerous and Ward are taking a bit more time talking strategy. WC pleads with referee Jefferson Harding to ask one of them to get out of the ring so the match can begin, but when the official obliges, Marcus and Johnny blow him off! Frustrated, Wildchild approaches the tandem and spins his former tag team partner around, then steps back and waves him on, asking him to come get some! Johnny Dangerous merely rolls his eyes at his former partner and then turns his back on him, literally, and continues his conversation with Ward!


“It doesn’t look to me like Johnny Dangerous is in any hurry to stay between the ropes with a man who wants his head on a platter,” states LDP, all too correctly.


Angered that his former partner has blown him off, Wildchild goes and swings Johnny around again, but this time when he does it, Johnny strikes with a slap across the side of the face, stunning Wildchild!




After the “ooh” comes the “boo,” as the crowd doesn’t take kindly to that...and neither does WC! The Caribbean cruisers eyes light up as he bolts towards Johnny, but the Barracuda dives out of the ring! Wildchild reaches through the ropes to get his hands on his former partner, leaving him wide-open from a Pearl Harbor attack by Ward!




“Johnny Dangerous taking advantage of his ex-partner’s emotions, and luring him into a trap!” shouts Pete.


“That’s why I dropped your ass, punk!” taunts Johnny from the floor, as Ward hammers Wildchild’s back with punishing double-axe handle blows inside the ring. Ward pulls Wildchild to his feet and grabs him by the wrist, whipping him into the ropes. WC ducks a clothesline attempt on the rebound, and then leaps into the air as he bounces off the ropes a second time, only to be caught by Marcus.


“Wildchild trying to use his speed against Marcus Ward, but Ward is just too strong!” proclaims King. The Mastermind turns to taunt Todd Cortez before delivering a fallaway slam, but the Urban Legend runs into the ring before he can react, and dropkicks Wildchild in the back, knocking Ward off his feet! Harding drops down to make the count:












But Ward kicks out at two! Johnny rushes in to confront Todd, but Cortez turns the tables on him, forcing him back into a neutral corner as Wildchild backs Ward into the opposite corner!


“We’ve got all four of them in there, MacDougal!” exclaims King. “They didn’t waste any time; it’s busting loose early!” Wildchild and Cortez each whip their opponents towards the center of the ring, only for Ward to reverse easily, but the alert Bahaman leaps into the air as he sees his former partner flung towards him…




… And blasts him in the face with a flying forearm! Johnny rolls out to the floor and Todd races across the ring to tackle Marcus to the canvas! WC runs over to help his partner whip Ward into the ropes, leaping into the air as he rebounds to knock him over the top rope with a double dropkick!




“Cortez and Wildchild showing tremendous continuity to start off the match!” yells Pete. Johnny and Marcus huddle together outside the ring, struggling to hear over the roar of the crowd, as Cortez returns to the apron. Eventually, Marcus returns to the ring. He and Wildchild lockup in a collar-and-elbow tie-up, and WC takes him over with an armdrag, quickly dragging him over to his corner to make the tag , and holding onto Ward’s arm as Cortez comes over the top rope to land on his exposed arm with a slingshot legdrop! Todd pulls Marcus to his feet and twists his arm around twice with an arm wringer, before making the tag back to Wildchild, who immediately comes in off the top turnbuckle with a flying double-axe handle onto Ward’s arm! WC takes over the arm wringer from Todd, winding Marcus up a few more times before once again tagging Cortez back in.


“Wildchild and Cortez are showing the continuity that made them both multiple-time World Tag Team Champions!” shouts Pete, as Todd comes in through the ropes and kicks Marcus in the elbow, nearly hyper-extending the tender joint! Cortez continues to hammer away at the elbow, and then takes down the Mastermind with a modified Judo trip! Cortez gets up and tags Wildchild back in, and then walks back over to hold Ward’s arm in place as the Bahama Bomber leaps onto the top turnbuckle and then dazzles the crowd with his agility by turning a cartwheel on the top rope!


“What phenomenal balance by the Wildchild!” exclaims Pete. From the handstand position, Wildchild flips forward, landing in a seated position on the top rope, and then bounces off the rope, flipping back into the ring to crash onto Ward’s arm with a modified split-legged moonsault!







“Unbelievable agility by Wildchild!” gushes Pete. “I’ve never seen anything like that!”


“He’s lucky that he didn’t break his neck with a fool move like that!” replies King. Wildchild pulls Marcus back to his feet and whips him into the ropes, but the Mastermind still has enough presence of mind to reverse it. He lowers his head to deliver a back-body drop as Wildchild rebounds, but the Human Hurricane easily evades him with a running leapfrog, and then quickly leaps back into the air, landing on the top rope and springing back into the ring as Marcus spins around, latching his legs around Ward’s neck, and taking him down with a satellite headscissors takeover!





“Another tremendous maneuver by the Wildchild!” shouts LDP. “He’s on fire, King!” Wildchild tags Todd back in and the two men whip Ward into the ropes. Wildchild drops to his knees as Marcus rebounds, and stuns him with a lunging shoulderblock to the midsection that doubles him over, just as the Urban Legend runs to the opposing ropes, picking up speed as he rebounds and leaps into the air as he draws near Ward…






… Knocking him senseless with the Hollow Point!



“Hollow Point!” shrieks Pete, as Cortez applies a lateral press, and then hooks the leg. “This could be it!”
















Johnny Dangerous rushes into the ring, stomping on Todd’s back to break up the pin, and then scurries back out to the apron before Harding can admonish him. Ward crawls over to his corner and makes the tag to the Barracuda, who enters the ring legally for the first time in the match.


“Tag made, and in comes Johnny Dangerous,” reports LDP, as Johnny and Todd engage in a tie-up. Johnny then surprises Todd by forcing a breakup, and then immediately slicing his chest with a fierce knife-edge chop! Johnny whips him into the ropes, lifting him into a hiptoss as he rebounds, but the Urban Legend floats through, wrapping his arms around the Secret Agent and taking him over with a tremendous belly-to-belly suplex! It’s not enough to hold him down, however, as Johnny quickly rolls away from Todd and scrambles to his feet, looking past the Urban Legend, into his corner!


“Come on out, punk!”


Todd blinks in disbelief as Johnny arrogantly calls out his former partner. He glances back towards his corner, where WC is bouncing frenetically up and down on the apron, practically chomping at the bit to get back into the ring!


“Johnny just asked for Wildchild,” says Pete, “and I think that Todd might oblige him!” Todd looks out into the crowd as he points towards his corner, eliciting a loud cheer from the fans:






Recognizing the demands of the paying customers, the Urban Legend reaches into his corner and makes the tag to Wildchild!




Wildchild leaps over the top rope to enter the ring, storming to his former teammate, and getting right in his face! The two berate each other with trash talk that passes just out of the range of the nearest camera’s microphone, until Wildchild finally decides that he’s had enough, and nails the Barracuda with a quick succession of right hands! He staggers Johnny enough so that he falls back to the ropes, and then pulls him up and propels him towards the far side. Johnny rebounds, but at the same time, Wildchild leaps into action, and hooks Johnny’s head before falling back and snapping him over onto the canvas!


“The Freefall from Wildchild has sent Johnny Dangerous rolling across the canvas!”


Johnny scrambles to his feet, but Wildchild is in motion, running right towards him. Just before impact, Johnny ducks, and elevates WC over the ropes...but the popular star lands safely on the apron! WC spins Johnny around and snaps his neck over the top rope, sending his former partner off-balance before he springboards in, soaring over Johnny and rolling him up with a sunset flip!






Dangerous kicks out rather easily, and lets himself roll out under the bottom rope and to the floor. The crowd lets Johnny have it for avoiding his opponent, but it’s short-lived, as Cortez hops off the apron, takes Johnny by the waistband, and throws him back in!


“Hey now! All the man wanted was a breather, he must be spent having to keep up with Wildchild!” says King, sticking up for the former World Champion.


“You’re telling me he blew up in the less than two minutes?” replies Pete incredulously. “That’s Johnny Dangerous, not Ghost Machine!” Dangerous gets to his feet and protests Cortez’s involvement, pointing a finger in his direction as the Urban Legend pleads his innocence on the outside...and serves as a distraction as Wildchild rolls Johnny up with a schoolboy!






Johnny escapes that predicament quickly as well, but as he stands up, WC leaps up onto his shoulders and tries for a rana… but Dangerous manages to throw WC’s legs off, flipping the native of the Bahamas back to the canvas! Wildchild lands on his feet, and Johnny tries to take his head off with a lariat, but it’s ducked! Wildchild runs to the ropes and comes back through the air, scissoring his legs around Johnny’s head and spinning around and around with several revolutions before pulling Johnny down to the canvas with a crucifix!









“That’s the third time Wildchild has gotten Johnny in position for a pinfall, and that cannot be making the secret agent man very happy!”


After the kickout, Wildchild quickly approaches his foe again, looking to keep the momentum going...but he walks right into a boot to the stomach by Johnny! Dangerous then cracks his one-time friend across the chest with a BRUTAL knife-edge chop, the kind that makes even the fans up in the nosebleeds cringe! Another hard strike across the chest staggers Wildchild, and then Johnny takes him by the braids, and then drives his knee up into the breadbasket! With Wildchild keeled over, Johnny takes him by the head and runs him into the top turnbuckle, then keeps him trapped as he tags in the powerhouse, Marcus Ward.


“This is what they need to do if they want to win. Keep Twinkle Toes there off his feet and away from the ropes, keep him grounded and work him over. He’s nothing if he’s not airborne!”


Johnny holds Wildchild as Ward steps in, and he delivers a kick to WC’s chest as Johnny has him hunched over. Dangerous releases his grip and exits the ring, and now Ward takes Wildchild by the arm and wrenches it, then tugs at it and pulls him right into an elbow shot to the side of the face! WC staggers, only to have his arm wrenched again, and then has the elbow of Ward driven into his cheekbone for a second time! Ward wrenches the arm again, but this time Wildchild rolls to the canvas, then gets up and swings behind Ward and pushes him towards the ropes, then steamrolls towards him...and gets flattened by a shoulderblock!


“Hah! C’mon now Wildchild, you can’t match power with this man!”


Ward snickers, and looks to Johnny for approval as he pulls Wildchild up...and is rocked with a European uppercut! He takes Ward by the arm and sends him to the far side, but “The Mastermind” reverses it, so it’s WC who bounces off the ropes...with a spinning leg lariat that takes Ward off his feet! WC then races to the ropes again, springing off the canvas and doing a full flip before coming down across the upper body of Ward and rolling to his feet!


“Somersault senton off the ropes takes the wind out of Ward...and there’s the tag!”


The crowd roars as Wildchild races to his corner and tags in the Urban Legend, and then goes back to Ward. He picks up the largest man in the contest and sends him to the corner, then motions for Cortez to come forward. Todd races up to his partner and grabs his arm, then sends him across the canvas with an Irish whip...and Wildchild takes to the air, curling himself up into a ball and ramming his body into Ward, crushing him in the corner!


“Running variation of the Pinball attack WC has made famous, and that’s not bad teamwork for two men who have never seen eye to eye!” comments Pete, impressed with the effort of the fan favorites.


Ward slumps down in the corner, and as his partner exits the ring, Cortez runs towards the corner and brings his leg up, ramming his knee into the side of Ward’s head! The street fighter then pulls his rival up to his feet and throws him back into the corner, then climbs up on the middle rope and puts his fist in the air, signaling to the crowd what’s about to come.






















The crowd cheers loudly, as Cortez hops down and drags a weary Ward out of the corner after being dazed by ten hard fists. Marcus gets snapmared to the canvas, and then Cortez winds up before delivering a hard kick that sends shockwaves up his spine! Todd then hops over Ward and hits the ropes, but before he rebounds, Dangerous runs across the apron and pulls back on Todd’s head, pushing him to the canvas! The crowd doesn’t like that one bit and lets Johnny know it, but Wildchild does them one better by running into the ring and springboarding off of Marcus Ward as he rests on all fours, leaping up into a Hurricanrana that takes Johnny Dangerous off the apron and to the floor!


“WOW! Did you see that?”


“Of course I saw it you nincompoop, but what does Wildchild think he’s doing? He belongs in the corner and waiting for a tag, there was no need for that!”


“What about what Johnny did?”


“What about it?”


“I figured you’d say that.”


The two men who once made up the popular Wild & Dangerous tandem are both down on the floor, while in the ring Todd Cortez does battle with the man who has bested him in the past. Todd strikes with several right hand jabs, but Ward comes close and rakes the eyes, then delivers a knee to the stomach for good measure. He lifts Cortez up for a vertical suplex, but doesn’t follow through, choosing to hang Cortez upside down instead. Ward shows off his strength as the blood flows downward, rushing to Todd’s head before Ward releases his grip, throwing Todd forward and pancaking him on the canvas! Marcus follows up, pulling Todd up and bringing him off the mat with a waistlock, up onto his shoulders...but Todd falls to his feet, countering the powerbomb attempt by slipping out of Ward's grasp...AND THEN GETS CLOTHESLINED OUT OF HIS BOOTS~!


"Guess this Cortez/Wildchild duo isn't as quick as they think!" quips King.


Ward starts stomping on Cortez, kicking him multiple times on the upper body before bouncing off the ropes and connecting with a kneedrop! He covers, hooking a leg to ensure that his opponent stays down.









Cortez rolls a shoulder, avoiding defeat. Ward pays it no mind and continues his assault, as he pulls Todd up and presses him over his head, holding him their longer than needed.


"Look at the strength of The Mastermind!"


Ward mouths off to the crowd as he holds the Urban Legend above his head, and then throws him to the canvas, slamming him hard on his back. Cortez sits up slightly and groans in pain, but he's forced down onto his back, as he's trapped in a pinfall attempt once again!









Cortez kicks out, but once again, Ward simply keeps the offense flowing, as he brings Todd up and sends him into the corner. Ward charges with a corner clothesline, smashing into Cortez at full speed, and then leads him out of the corner. Ward then backs Todd into the ropes and sends him across the ring, waiting for him as he rebounds. When Cortez springs back towards Ward, Marcus takes him and presses him up over his head again, but this time Cortez uses the momentary gloating of his rival against him, as he wriggles free and falls behind him! Ward is shocked that Todd escaped, and when he turns to his opponent, he's met with a dropkick to the knee that takes his leg out from under him! As he rests on both knees, Cortez hits the ropes and drills him with a basement dropkick to the face! After connecting, Cortez rolls to his corner and makes the tag, causing Wildchild to release the tag rope and slingshot up to the top rope and use it as a launching pad to come down onto Ward's chest with a double-knee press from the top rope! After connecting, Wildchild walks towards the enemy corner, and more specifically, towards Johnny Dangerous. Not wanting any of his ex-partner, Johnny hops off the apron and protests Wildchild's advances, telling referee Harding to keep him away. The referee does what Johnny wants, although not necessarily because Johnny asked for it, and directs Wildchild back to the legal man, who is coming up off the mat in a daze. WC moves towards Ward, but Marcus drops low and grips Wildchild's singlet, using it to throw him out through the middle ropes. Ward was probably hoping it was a move that would buy him some time, but Wildchild resisted from falling off the apron, and pulled himself up quickly, and now springboards back into the ring, onto Ward's shoulders...AND RIGHT INTO A HARD POWERBOMB!


"I think I'M gonna need a heat pad on my back after that one!" states King.


Ward follows up immediately, hooking both legs of Wildchild and spreading them apart before delivering a hard stomp to the nether regions! Harding protests the blatant shot, but Ward shrugs off the scolding, takes both legs, uses them to roll Wildchild onto his stomach, and locks him in a Boston Crab!


"Excellent move by the Mastermind! Whether it leads to a submission or not, it's keeping Wildchild off his feet and off his game, and it's going to wear him thin, which I'm sure is how Johnny Dangerous wants him."


"What are you saying? That Johnny wouldn't face off with Wildchild if he were the fresh man, or at full strength?"


"That's exactly what I'm saying."


"I thought so."


"No witty retort for that one?"


"Why, so you can play killjoy like usual?"


Ward rears back, pulling WC's legs as far back as they'll go, putting strain on the lower back of the Bahama Bomber. Ward puts all his strength into the hold, looking to drain the energy from the risk taker. Seeing his teammate doing such a good job of draining the energy out of his hated former friend, Johnny waves Ward on, asking him to come to the corner. Ward nods and gets up, releasing the hold, but then points to his head and reaches down, dragging Wildchild across the canvas with him! Johnny applauds the thought process of Marcus Ward, and when Ward gets near his corner, he makes the tag, only to stay in the ring and re-apply the Boston Crab!


"Ward tagged out, but has now gone back to the submission, and... OH!"


Ward did tag out, and he did trap Wildchild in the Crab for a second time...because it left him prone for the slingshot legdrop to the back of the head from Johnny Dangerous!


"The man knows how to make an entrance!" chuckles King.


Johnny stands up after connecting, and rolls Wildchild onto his back, then hits a standard legdrop from the standing position. Dangerous then goes for the pin, hoping that he can put his nemesis away quickly and easily here tonight at Ashes 2 Ashes.














The crowd rejoices as the high-flying native of the Bahamas gets his shoulder up at the two-count, crushing Johnny's dreams of victory. Dangerous brings Wildchild up, wrenching the arm before connecting with a chop, then a roundhouse kick to the stomach. Wildchild is doubled over by the blow, and Johnny backs himself into the ropes and comes off with an axe kick to the back of the head, putting Wildchild down on the canvas! No traces of the friendship between the two are apparent anymore, as when Wildchild pushes off the canvas still holding his head, Johnny gains a little speed and runs towards Wildchild before driving his boot into the side of his head! Johnny then picks WC up and snapmares him over, then cracks him across the back of the head with a slap that draws boos for its cockiness! Johnny pays no attention to the crowd reaction to his tactics and yanks Wildchild up off his feet before taking Wildchild up by the waist and planting him with a back suplex! Johnny rolls on top of him for a lateral press…
















Todd comes in to make the save! As Harding is admonishing Cortez for coming into the ring, Johnny gestures for Ward to join him for a double team maneuver. He then pulls Wildchild to his feet and whips him into the ropes, but the Bahama Bomber reverses, sending Johnny in instead! WC springs into the air to avoid Johnny with a leapfrog as he bounces off the ropes and the Barracuda barrels into Ward, knocking Marcus backwards into the ropes, and knocking Johnny down to his knees on the canvas! Sensing another opportunity to amaze the crowd, Wildchild races towards the edge of the ring, leaping into the air as he bounces off the ropes, and using Johnny’s back as a platform to double-jump across the ring, diving into the Mastermind’s chest…






… And knocking them both over the top rope and down to the floor with a flying cross-body block!











“Oh my God!” exclaims LDP. “What an amazing maneuver by the Wildchild! He actually ran off of Johnny Dangerous’ back to fly into Marcus Ward for that death-defying high cross-body!”






WC acknowledges the fans by pumping his fist energetically through the air before turning his attention back towards the ring…






… Only to walk right into a baseball slide by Johnny Dangerous that knocks him into the ring barricade!


“Hah!” snorts King. Wildchild was so pleased with himself for his showmanship, that he forgot that Johnny was still the legal man!” Johnny rolls out of the ring and pulls WC to his feet, leading him by the back of the head over to the edge of the ring, and slamming his face into the edge of the ring apron!


“A brief lapse in concentration by Wildchild has allowed Johnny Dangerous to retake control of this match,” says Pete. “King, Wildchild has proven to have a lot of determination, but I’m not sure if he’ll be able to withstand this assault!” Johnny rolls WC back into the ring and quickly slides in after him, cradling him into a pinning predicament:
















Wildchild kicks out at two! Johnny pulls Wildchild to his feet, trapping him in a front facelock before twisting around to face away from his former partner, and then falls to the canvas, pulling WC down and jamming his neck against the Barracuda’s shoulder with a Hangman’s Neckbreaker! He applies a lateral press:















That only gets two! Johnny pulls WC to his feet and then tags Ward back in. Johnny whips Wildchild across the ring as the Mastermind returns to the ring, and WC then bounces off the ropes into Ward’s waiting arms, as he snatches WC out of the air, twisting him around before slamming him back into the canvas with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker! He quickly goes for another cover as Harding dives into position to deliver the count:












Wildchild kicks out at two! Marcus begins to pull WC to his feet, but the Bahama Bomber stuns him by slapping his hands away and blasting him repeatedly with rapid-fire right hands!


“Look at Wildchild fire back!” shouts Pete. “He’s chopping Marcus Ward down to size with those right hands!” Just when it appears that WC is going to be able to take Ward down, the Mastermind kills his momentum with a kneelift to the midsection! He lifts WC into the air to deliver a Scoop Slam, but the Tropical Tumbler floats over his shoulder, landing on his feet behind Marcus, and wraps both arms around his waist as he pushes him towards the edge of the ring. Wildchild pushes Marcus into the ropes and tries to pull him backwards into a rolling cradle, but Ward denies him by holding onto the top rope. As he turns around, though, Wildchild races towards him, and before he has time to react, the Human Hurricane slides through his legs to the arena floor, and trips him up from behind! In a flash, WC leaps back onto the apron and grabs onto the top rope, flinging himself over the top rope and twisting around in midair as he crashes down onto Ward with a slingshot-twisting splash! Harding runs over to count the shoulders…













Ward kicks out with authority at two, but WC beats him to his feet. Wildchild continues to batter him with right hands, before running towards the edge of the ring to launch into another maneuver, but Johnny drives a knee into his back as he bounces off the ropes! Deciding that he’s had enough, WC reaches over the top rope and grabs Johnny by the collar, threatening to hit him as the fans egg him on:








“Referee Jefferson Harding is going to have to establish some kind of control here,” says King, “before Wildchild decides to go into business for himself!” Before Wildchild can finally give Johnny his comeuppance, though, Marcus slams a running kneelift into the small of his back! Ward makes the tag to Johnny, and then lifts Wildchild into a military press as the Barracuda climbs to the top turnbuckle.


“Once again, Johnny Dangerous was able to take advantage of Wildchild’s emotional state,” says King, “and now, it looks like Johnny and Ward are about to go for something big here!” Marcus grunts as he strains to launch Wildchild overhead, just as Johnny comes off the top rope, snaring him in a ¾-facelock as he flies past…






And driving him into the canvas with a Diamond Cutter from eight feet in the air! A hush falls over the Tokyo Dome as Johnny pops jubilantly to his feet, standing over WC and taunting him mercilessly!


“OH MY GOD!” shrieks Pete. “That was one of the most devastating maneuvers I’ve ever seen!”


“That’s it!” shouts King, as Johnny continues to give WC the business. “Show’s over; thanks for coming out! You people at home, thanks for watching! We’ll see you on Storm! For Drain-Clogger Pete, this is the Suicide…”


“King,” interrupts Pete, “what the hell are you doing?”


“I’m wrapping up the show, dumbass!” replies King. “I might as well; I mean, nothing else that we’re going to see tonight is going to top that!”


“Man, I’m really worried about Wildchild,” says Pete. “He’s been face down for almost a minute without moving!” The Barracuda walks over towards the edge of the ring, hocking up a huge loogie and spitting it out into the crowd!









“Why doesn’t Johnny just go for the pin, and put him out of his misery?”


“Because Johnny’s not done with him, that’s why,” replies King. “Obviously, Johnny as much as said that he wanted to get back at Wildchild for costing him the International Title… It seems to me that Johnny’s just not through with him!”


“Well, this could be a big mistake,” says Pete, as Johnny walks over towards his opponent’s corner to taunt Todd Cortez. “I mean, Wildchild may be out of it, but Johnny doesn’t want to give Todd Cortez a chance to get involved in this match again; he should go for the cover while Wildchild is still unconscious!”


“Well, MacDougal, I’m actually inclined to agree with you for once,” concedes King reluctantly. “Johnny Dangerous can get the pin anytime that he wants it; he’s playing with fire by giving Cortez the opportunity to get involved!” Johnny, bored of teasing Cortez, turns towards the crowd and flashes his signed for Death From Above!


“Aha!” exclaims King, as Johnny kicks WC over onto his back. “I see what this is all about; Johnny’s going to put his old partner out of wrestling here with the DFA!” Johnny walks over to a neutral corner to get ready to finish Wildchild, and Melissa runs over to the corner to try and dissuade him.


“Look at the concern on Melissa Fasaki’s face as she tries to reason with Johnny!”


“And Johnny’s getting a kick out it,” replies King. “Look at that; Melissa’s outside the ring begging Johnny for mercy, and Johnny’s putting the badmouth on her!”


“Johnny needs to stop worrying about Melissa,” says Pete, “and focus on getting out of here with a win!” Johnny climbs onto the top turnbuckle, looking out into the crowd to taunt them one last time before leaping off the top rope…






… When Todd Cortez suddenly runs across the apron and pushes Johnny’s feet out from underneath him, knocking him back down onto the mat!






“And a desperation move by Todd Cortez to make the save!” shouts Pete. “I told you, King; he took too much time jawing away! He should have won this match when he had the chance!”


“Yeah, well, he may still have the chance to win,” replies King. “In case you haven’t noticed, Wildchild still hasn’t moved.” Instead of going for the cover, however, Johnny crawls feebly over to his corner and tags Marcus back in. The Mastermind makes a beeline for Wildchild and quickly applies a lateral press!







“Marcus Ward wasting no time going for the pin!” shouts Pete.










“That’s why they call him a mastermind!”








“Todd Cortez had to make the save, or this one was history!” exclaims Pete. “And I’m starting to get worried about Wildchild, King; he hasn’t moved in several minutes! Harding might have to step in and stop this match!”


“Well, Wildchild shouldn’t look back on his career in shame,” says King, as Marcus pulls Wildchild to his feet. “He hasn’t had the achievements of Johnny Dangerous, but multiple time Cruiserweight and Tag Champions is nothing to sneeze at!” Marcus whips Wildchild into the ropes, lifting him into the air as he bounces off the ropes to spin him into a tilt-a-whirl… but the Human Hurricane rolls over Ward’s shoulders, locking his arms and legs around the Mastermind’s arms in a crucifix pin attempt, only to suddenly pitch his weight backwards, snapping Ward off his feet…





… And snapping his head backwards onto the canvas with a sensational crucifix bomb!








“Holy cow!” shouts Pete. “Don’t count Wildchild’s career as over quite yet, King! It looks like he just re-joined the ranks of the living… in a BIG way!”


“That could have been pure instinct,” replies King dismissively. “As far as we know, his body’s running on auto-pilot!” Wildchild rolls painfully onto his stomach and begins to crawl towards his corner, as Melissa cheers him on from outside the ring. The fans in the Tokyo Dome begin cheering loudly for him, and he looks up to see that his corner is less than two feet away.


“What a fantastic turn of events this could be,” says Pete. “After being the victim of an absolutely devastating maneuver, Wildchild is on the verge of making the tag to his partner, and turning the tide in this match!”


“I can’t believe it,” says King, “as the fans’ support for WC grows progressively louder. “ I won’t believe it; this guy was clinically dead for five minutes, and now he’s inches away from making a tag?” Now less than a foot away from his partner, Wildchild reaches up to make contact with Todd’s outstretched hand…



… When suddenly, Johnny Dangerous rushes into the ring, distracting the referee just as their hands connect! Todd attempts to come into the ring, but the referee holds him back, ordering him to return to the apron.





“Hah!” snorts King, as Johnny drags Wildchild back towards his corner. “Brilliant thinking on the part of Johnny Dangerous!” Marcus pulls Wildchild back to his feet and whips him into a neutral corner, where he begins to batter him mercilessly with forearm shots to the chest.


“A golden opportunity to tag out has gone by the wayside,” moans LDP. “And now you’ve got to wonder how much more punishment Wildchild can take!” Ward motions for Johnny to come back into the ring as he grabs WC by the wrist and whips him across the ring. The Mastermind charges in after Wildchild to deliver a running lariat, but the Human Hurricane dives out of the corner to avoid him, quickly scrambling to his feet and leaping back into the air to knock the incoming Johnny Dangerous down with a dropkick!






Marcus spins around and goes after WC, but the Bahaman makes use of his superior foot speed, and makes a running dive towards his corner, reaching out to Cortez…






… And making the tag!






“Tag is made!” exclaims LDP, as Cortez explodes into the ring! He greets Marcus Ward with a hard right hand that knocks him down, and then turns around and shares the wealth with Johnny Dangerous!


“Todd Cortez is a house of fire!” shouts Pete, as Todd continues to bounce back and forth between his two opponents, knocking each of them down with rights and lefts. “He’s handling both Ward and Dangerous by himself right now!” Johnny comes up behind Cortez and tries to hold his arms back, but the Urban Legend jams an elbow into his ribs, and then spins around and blasts him with a Gamengiri! Cortez springs back to his feet as Ward charges towards him and knocks down the Mastermind with a jumping roundhouse kick! He pulls Ward back to his feet and goozles him with his right hand, before lifting him up into the air and abruptly sitting out, planting Marcus with a Miracle Ecstasy Bomb!


“Urban Assault!” shouts Pete, as Cortez continues to hold Ward down in a pinning predicament. “That’s gonna do it!” Harding dives into position to make the three-count:




















Johnny Dangerous dives into the ring to break up the pinfall, but the somewhat-rejuvenated Wildchild rushes in to attack him!



“Johnny Dangerous saves his partner from certain defeat,” says LDP, “but here comes the Wildchild!” WC and Johnny go at each other ferociously with lefts and rights, until Johnny finally takes advantage by raking the eyes! He whips WC into the ropes, but the Bahama Bomber explodes off the ropes as he rebounds, and sends Johnny flying with a flying back elbow smash!


“We’ve got mayhem in the ring, MacDougal!” gripes King. “Jefferson Harding has lost all control in there!” WC runs to the ropes as Johnny gets back to his feet and leaps off the canvas, whipping his leg crisply through the air and knocking his former partner over the top rope and out to the floor!


“This is bedlam!” shrieks Pete, as Wildchild and Johnny fall over the ring barricade, and continue fighting into the crowd. “Now we’ve got action outside the ring!”


“Who are the legal men?”


“I’m pretty sure that Cortez and Ward are the legal men, King,” replies Pete. While Wildchild and Johnny take their fight into uncharted territory, Marcus Ward attempts to regain control of the match inside the ring, as he whips Todd Cortez towards a neutral corner, but the Urban Legend reverses, rifling Ward into the turnbuckles instead, and then racing towards the ropes as he staggers out of the corner…






… Knocking him silly with the Hollow point! The crowd erupts as Todd bounces back to his feet and gives the sign for the R.A.P.


“My goodness!” cries LDP. “We could see the Riot Act Plus right here!”


“I can’t believe it,” says King, as Cortez pulls Marcus into a standing headscissors. “If he hits this, it’s over!” The Urban Legend locks his hands around Ward’s waist, and then leaps over his back, pulling the Mastermind’s weight over with him as he lands on his feet…








“That’s it!” proclaims Pete, as Cortez hooks the leg and pulls back hard.








“You can count to a million,” finishes Pete. “He won’t get up from that!”


















The Tokyo Dome erupts into cheers as “Oh No,” by Mos Def begins to play once again! Megan slides into the ring and scrambles to her feet, leaping into Todd’s arms in a passionate embrace, as Funyon rises from his ringside seat to give the official word:


“The winners of this contest,” booms Funyon, “the team of the Wildchild… and TODD COOOORTEZ!”


“What an amazing contest between four of the finest competitors in the SWF!” shouts LDP. “One of the best matches I’ve seen in quite some time! And we’ve still got plenty of action yet to come!” Todd Cortez climbs up onto the turnbuckles and continues his celebration with the fans…



As we:


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It’s beginning to get into the very, very dark of night in Tokyo, Tokyo Dome City lit up like the amusement park it is, but if one were to use population instead of decor as a judge of what was what, Tokyo Dome City would be a ghost town, because everyone that’s anyone is at the Tokyo Dome.


The cameras cut to inside the arena, sweeping around the capacity crowd and picking up various signs, including “STRYKE LOVE”, complete with anime drawing of the Aussie superstar, “MIRACLE ECSTASY BOMBUUU~!”, complete with anime-style drawing of Todd Cortez performing the Urban Assault, and “OUSHI KETSUNOANA TEGOME JOHNNY”, complete with anime-style drawing of a bull doing something to Agent Dangerous’ hindquarters that the camera is forced to cut away from, lest the FCC perform that action on the SWF’s time slots. The camera continues panning, ducking and weaving to avoid other signs involving various animals violating various heels to come to rest in front of the SWF announce table, occupied by none other than Longdogger Pete and Suicide King.


“Ladies and gentlemen, we have seen ultraviolence. We have seen tag team action,” begins Pete, “and we’ve seen another random four-way. And now, we are in the home stretch. Three championship matches have been signed for this PPV, and they’re all the finale. We are LIVE from the Tokyo Dome, and we are about to bring you the first of three fantastic matchups.”


“Indeed we are, Pete.” says King, agreeing with the Longdogger for once. “Johnson has an advantage here, as he’s not coming off of ring rust, and he’s been the champion for 85 days, a reign that’s only been topped by...”


At this moment in time, King shudders.


“...Spike Jenkins.” King practically vomits the name, and it is at that moment that the announce team is interrupted by the Smarktron coming to life, revealing the Official SWF Cruiserweight Championship Match Graphic~!™


On one side, is a man whose tan skin, blonde hair, and barely noticeable scar makes for a devilishly handsome yet strangely intimidating look. It is also a man who has done PLENTY in his long and illustrious IGNJL/SJL/SWF career, and he’s looking tonight to add to his already sizeable coffers.




The capacity crowd claps politely, and continues to clap until the other man in the match pops up on screen. This is a man who hasn’t been wrestling nearly as long as Stryke has, but has seen plenty of combat in his 21 years. This is a man coated in tattoos, covered in a track jacket, and dripping with intimidation as he glares at the camera, his fist up in front of him as is the MMA tradition, obscuring the view of his championship.







The Japanese crowd is much too polite to boo, at least at this point in the match, and instead goes silent as they continue to stare at the screen, watching the graphic as if it’s going to do anything else. And it is for those actions, they are punished.




Well, at least their eyes are, and soon their ears are as well as the squealing opening notes of “How I Could Just Kill A Man” come tearing out of the speakers after the blinding burst of pyro, both of which signal the entrance of Stryke. The man himself steps through the curtain, to a thunderous wave of clapping, and immediately begins his walk down to the ring, slapping hands as he goes.


“Ladies and gentlemen, the challenger is a man that has been through just about everything the SWF has to offer.” begins Pete, in an upbeat voice. “If they’ve come down the pike at any point over the last four years, Stryke has been there to meet them. Here is a man who put his career on the line at the 2004 Clusterfuck, and came damn close to winning. Now he is back, and I can’t help but think that, even with ring rust, he has an excellent chance of dethroning JJ Johnson tonight.”


“Pish tosh, old chap” says King, before throwing away his monocle and bowler and continuing. “Stryke may have the size and experience advantage, but Johnson is the superior athlete. Stryke may be a tough son of a bitch, but Johnson is a mixed martial artist. He has black belts in kempo, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, judo, and kickboxing, and I highly doubt that Stryke, for all of his strike work, has belts in any of those.”


Regardless of martial arts prowess, the fans seem to adore Stryke as he slides into the ring and climbs to the second rope and staring out at the sold-out Dome before climbing back down and beginning to stretch as Cypress Hill fades out.


As do the lights.




And with that, the clapping stops as the opening notes of Fear Factory’s “Scapegoat” explode out of the speakers, the red and white lights flashing with them before dropping down into darkness once more. Another burst, another flash, and the drums kick in as the lights fade up to red, and the lights continue their flashing that’s liable to cause more seizures than that one Pokemon episode. Finally, smoke begins billowing out of the stage...




...followed shortly by the roar of Burton C. Bell, the song kicking into full force as Johnson soon strides out, the lights continue to flash, reflecting occasionally off of the belt over his shoulder. His eyes locked on Stryke, and Stryke’s eyes returning the favor, he marches down the ramp, looking occasionally out at the crowd. Since he’s a heel, he meets nothing but blank faces, and to a normal man, 45,000 blank faces would be pretty fucking unnerving. Not Johnson, though. The Canadian is the picture of calm as he strides up the steps, stepping through the ropes and taking his eyes off of Stryke just long enough to climb to the second rope and look out over the crowd, his arms spread wide in his trademark crucifix pose before he steps down and unzips his track jacket. As he does this, Funyon and famed ZERO-ONE MAX ring announcer Oki Okidata both raise their mics to their mouths, and each begin to speak in their native tongue as Stryke and Johnson both wait in their respective corners.


“The following contest is scheduled for one fall, and it is for the SWF Cruiserweight Championship!”


”Sono kouzuko soudatso naru ichiranhyou dai icchi fo-ru, mata naru dai SWF Kuru-za-kinryou Seishou!”


Funyon looks over at Okidata and grins, and Okidata returns the gesture before they both continue.


“Introducing first, the challenger. In the blue and white shorts, he stands 6 feet, three inches tall, and weighs in tonight at 230 pounds. From Sydney, Australia...STRRRRYYYYYKKEEEEE!!!”


“Mi-to kan, dai chousensha. O dai buru-mata-shiro sho-topantsu, anokata sutando 2 metoru, 7.5 senchi takenaga, mata tairyou konban 104 kiroguramu. Kansha Shidoni-O-sutoraria...STRRYYYYYYYKKKUUUUUHHHHHH!!!”


And with that, streamers the color of the Australian flag fly into the air, and the crowd lets out its first cheer of the night as lackeys around the ring scuttle to retrieve the tissue.


“And his opponent, the champion. In the red shorts, with the white trim, he stands 6 feet, one inch tall and weighs in tonight at 219 pounds. He is the reigning and defending SWF Cruiserweight Champion. From Windsor, Ontario, Canada...J...J...JOHHHNNSSONN!!!!”


”Mata hantaisha, dai senshuken. O dai chi sho-topantsu, sanka shiro kai, anokata sutando 2 metoru, 2.5 senchi takegana, mata tairyou konban 99.5 kirogramu. Genson kinsenshuken mata bengosenshuken SWF kuru-za-kinryou senshuken. Kansha Uinza-Ontario-Kanada...J...J...JOOHHNNNSSOONNNOOOO!!!!!!”


Red and white streamers go sailing into the air, and Okidata and Funyon abandon the ring as the lackeys swarm the area, attempting to clear all of it out of the ring so as to not delay the contest any further. As they work, Johnson and Stryke simply stare at each other, and referee Nick Soapdish raises the title above his head for all to see. Finally, he hands the belt to David Blazenwing, and anybody in the crowd who didn’t get to see the belt is out of look as Soapdish signals for the bell.




“Here we go!” shouts Pete as the crowd is silent, staring patiently at the two men in the ring. Those same two men are staring patiently at each other, circling each other, but never changing their focus. Their path of walking draws them closer and closer, until finally they lock up in a collar-and-elbow tie-up. Muscles bulge as they struggle, neither man getting anywhere, until finally Johnson and Stryke break the hold and begin circling again. Various fans in the crowd call out, but their cries echo throughout the massive dome as the two men continue to try and visually get a feel for each other. They go into another lock-up, and this time Johnson is quick to duck under the Australian’s arm and into a rear waistlock. Stryke is quick to spread his legs as far apart as he can, deadweighting the champion, before slipping his arm into the hold and spinning out of the waistlock into an armwringer, twisting the arm forward as Johnson slaps at his shoulder.


“Johnson was likely looking for one of his patented German suplexes there,” says Pete. “Those things have some serious impact, and Stryke was wise to use a low-effort, high-reward escape. Now he just needs to find a way to follow up on this armwringer before Johnson finds his way out of it.”


“Johnson will find a way out. He’s the champion, it’s his job.” says King, rather smugly, as Johnson wriggles the trapped arm’s fingers, trying to keep the numbness out of it. Once he’s satisfied, Johnson judges the direction of the twist and rolls forward, relieving the pain in his arm and allowing him to twist the surprised Stryke’s arm into his own armwringer. Stryke rolls forward, onto his back, and kips up to polite applause from the crowd before he works that armwringer into an armwringer of his own, then goes from that into a hammerlock. Johnson takes a moment, then spins out of the hammerlock and into a hammerlock of his own before transitioning said hammerlock into a chickenwing. From there, he tries to reach his other arm around into a crossface, possibly to try for a Milennium but Stryke sees it coming and ducks his head before managing to wriggle his arm out of the chickenwing and duck around before tucking his head under Johnson’s arm and lifting...




“OOOOOHHH...” begins the Japanese crowd.


...but their excitement is unfounded, as Johnson flips out of the move before Stryke even begins to fall back, then shoves Stryke in the back as hard as he can before dropping to the mat and rolling out of the ring, swearing under his breath as he begins to pace back and forth on the outside.


“What is this? Johnson is running away?” asks Pete, almost bemused at Johnson’s actions as Stryke gives the Canadian a funny look.


“Johnson’s not running away, you fool!” begins King, in an indignant voice. “He’s simply taking a breather, some time to replan. If you got dumped on your head, that’d pretty damn well ruin whatever strategy you had. JJ knows this, and he’s taking time to reformulate his strategy to accomodate such a development. It’s really quite ingenious.” adds King as Johnson rolls back into the ring, climbing to his feet and offering his hand out for a test of strength. Stryke eyes the hand warily, but knowing that Johnson is for the most part a man of honor, takes the hand. Johnson offers the other, and Stryke accepts the other, and that’s where his mistake come in. While Johnson is indeed a man of honor, he is also a man of considerable strength for his size, and Stryke is caught off guard as Johnson immediately muscles him into a Matrix-like position, the Australian having to wrap his leg around Johnson’s to prevent falling over. Johnson continues to force Stryke down, and Stryke continues to Matrix, until finally the only thing keeping the Canadian from pinning the challenger is the fact that Stryke is bridged rather precariously on his head. Johnson tries to force him down, but there’s only so much you can do when all you control is the opponent’s hands, and force a bridged opponent’s shoulders down is not one of them, so Johnson abandons trying via his hands for a moment, but maintains the grip as he hoists himself up into a handstand before bringing himself back down, knees-first, on Stryke’s torso. The Australian bends, but he does not break, and the bridge stays strong despite the added 200-plus pounds being balanced via his neck, prompting the champion to perform another handstand, followed by another knee drop. Stryke quivers noticeably this time, and one of his legs almost gives out, but he still stays bridged as Johnson does another handstand...


“See, Pete. This is why Johnson is going to win. Persistence.” King says, but maybe too soon, as Johnson does not bring himself down with another knee drop. Instead, he drops himself to the side, and releases Stryke’s right hand before grabbing the Australian’s left and pulling it across his torso, then sliding under the challenger and forcing him onto his shoulders!





?T-NO, too soon, as Stryke is able to get a shoulder off of the mat. Johnson doesn’t waste any time, immediately releasing his half-straitjacket hold, causing Stryke’s body weight to force him over onto his front. Stryke, knowing he shouldn’t be on the ground with a guy as fast and as well-versed in submissions as Johnson, tries to get up, but he only makes it to his knees before Johnson dives over him with an Oklahoma roll!




TW-kickout! Stryke rolls himself out, and takes advantage of the arm between his legs by rolling to his knees, twirling as best someone in his position could before performing a dive of his own, catching Johnson off-guard with La Magistral!







But Johnson forces his free shoulder off of the mat before the final count, and rolls backwards. Unfortunately, by doing that, he’s put himself into an armwringer, and Stryke grabs the arm before jumping from his knees to his feet and continuing to work the hold. Johnson rolls forward, then back onto his shoulders, then kips up, but Stryke is waiting and forces him back down with a judo trip.


“Well, well. Who’s Mr. Judo now?” asks Pete, ever so glad to be showing King up, even if only for the smallest time.


“Johnson is still Mr. Judo.” says King, standing firm. “Hell, Maddix could probably perform a judo trip.”

Whether or not Maddix can perform a judo trip remains to be seen, but Johnson is smart enough to realize that attempting to get off the ground in this position is futile, and so instead twists around and hands Stryke’s hand over to his other hand as he slides his legs under it, then swivels his hips and swings his way up to his feet. Stryke reacts before Johnson does, and twists the arm up into another hammerlock, but Johnson is quick this time and reaches down between his legs and picks Stryke’s ankle for a modified single-leg takedown. The Australian falls, but he still has a grip on Johnson’s wrist, and he wriggles his way through the champion’s legs and into a reverse pumphandle as he lifts and dumps Johnson on his shoulders, then maintains the grip and flips over the Canadian with a modified jackknife!





TWO! NO! Johnson thrusts his legs and escapes the pin just in time to avoid a two-count as the crowd goes into another moment of polite applause for the inventive maneuver, and the actions leading up to it.


“What the hell was THAT?!” cries King, almost outraged at the maneuver. “That sure as hell wasn’t a normal wrestling move.”


Pete smiles, as he realizes what Stryke is doing. “Exactly, King. It’s not normal, it’s not in any of the books, and as such, Johnson’s not ready. He’s countered every regular thing Stryke has thrown at him. It’s when things like the La Magistral and what we just saw come into play that Johnson is helpless. Stryke may not be able to out-muscle or out-fly Johnson, but damned if he can’t out-think him.”


And if there’s one thing Johnson hates, it’s being out-thought. The Canadian slaps the mat angrily as he rolls to his feet, and immediately offers his arm up for a collar-and-elbow tie-up, his face blank apart from his eyes, which might be less intimidating if they were shooting lasers out of them. Stryke takes it, and the two lock up for the third time in the match, each struggling with each other, neither man gaining an advantage. Finally, they realize it’s likely a waste of energy, and the two break the hold.







The crowd oohs at what just happened. Stryke and Johnson had broken the hold, and Johnson rocked Stryke with a forearm shot. The first strike of the match, so far, and from the looks on both men’s face, definitely not the last. They’re sure as hell not going back to mat wrestling, that’s for sure.


“And the first shot of the war has been fired!” shouts Pete over the growing noise of the crowd as Johnson and Stryke continue to glare at each other, neither man wanting to make a move towards the other. Soapdish glances from one man, to the other, back to the first, and back to the other, and tries to encourage them to fight each other. Johnson obliges, rushing in and clubbing Stryke in the temple with his elbow. This staggers the challenger, but doesn’t topple him, so Johnson rocks him with a few forearm blows before whipping him to the opposite ropes. The Aussie bounces off, and comes back with Johnson attempting to slam him to the mat with a belly-to-belly, but Stryke is just fast enough to use his leg as a preventative measure, forcing it into the gap between Johnson’s legs and stopping the lift’s explosive momentum. Stryke is in what could best be described as a bearhug, but he bends himself back and gives Johnson a few clubby forearms of his own. This loosens the Canadian’s grip, and Stryke forces his way out of the hold before sprinting to the opposite ropes and coming back with a flying forearm shot...


...that Johnson catches and flips Stryke over into a tilt-a backbreaker!


“Didn’t quite get the whirl on that one, but he practically bent Stryke in half over his knee!” shouts King. “Now that we’re not boring the fans at home with ‘technical wrestling’, ‘sportsmanship’, and other such nonsense, this match can finally get into the pace that defines the cruiserweight division.”


“Since when do you support cruiserweights, King?” inquires Pete.


“Since I realized that after Johnson wins this, he’ll be out of viable contenders, and will likely hold onto the belt forever.” says King snarkily as Johnson brings Stryke to his feet before hoisting up and dropping him down with another backbreaker, pendulum this time. Stryke grabs at his back and cries out, and Johnson grins. He’s been looking for this. The Canadian wastes no time rolling Stryke onto his front and leaping into the air, coming down hard with a knee drop to the back. Again, Stryke groans, and this time decides the best idea would be to roll out of the ring. Holding at his back, Stryke walks up to the guardrail, looking out over the crowd and seeing looks of sympathy. Those turn into looks of fear quickly, though, and the Aussie quickly turns to see Johnson in mid-pescado, still holding onto the ropes with one hand as he begins to fall towards his victim. Stryke is wise to do what he does, which is duck. However, it’s not the right time, as Johnson merely lands on the apron, back to Stryke. He then pulls himself back into the ring, before pulling himself up AGAIN, this time turning 180 degrees and stopping on the top rope. Well, stopping for a second, as Stryke is unfortunate enough to look up just as Johnson is at the apex of his Spaceman Quebrada! Johnson doesn’t come down directly on Stryke, but he does come close enough to catch him in an inverted facelock on the way down, landing on his feet like a cat before lifting the Australian up into the air...




...AND SWINGING HIM BACK DOWN WITH A FALCON ARROW ON THE RAILING! The Japanese crowd oohs and aaaahs at the move as Stryke writhes on the arena floor, clutching at his back with increased fervor and letting out a low moan that draws pity from all within earshot. Well, except one. And unfortunately for Stryke, that one person picks him up and rests him back-first over the railing before springing to the top of the railing and delivering a double stomp to the chest that warps his spine even more! Johnson smirks as he steps effortlessly to the top of the railing, and then hops to the ring apron before stepping into the ring and breaking the count. With that taken care of, Johnson steps back out onto the apron before leaping to the second rope and sailing back with a picture-perfect Asai moonsault that causes champion and challenger to meet chest-to-chest and forces Stryke’s back to contort once more before slipping off of the railing and being driven into the concrete shoulders-first!


“Well, it certainly seems Johnson is enjoying performing flashy offense, King.” says Pete. “And never a wasted motion. Every move he’s done so far, it’s affected the back.”


“That’s why Johnson’s the champion, Pete. He won it with focus, and he’s retained it with focus.” says King.




“Doesn’t hurt that he’s a sadistic bastard.” adds King as Johnson forces Stryke to his feet before dumping him unceremoniously over the railing to the not-so-forgiving thin pads that are still better than concrete. Johnson again pulls Stryke up by the hair, which earns a stern warning from referee Nick Soapdish, but the Canadian doesn’t seem to care as he prepares to give Stryke a back suplex. He lifts, but Stryke floats over and tucks his head under the arm of the Canadian and, being sure to lift with his knees, TAKES JOHNSON UP AND MURDERS HIM WITH A GODDAMN BACKDROP DRIVER ON THE FLOOR!!!




Well, that was his intention, anyway. But they’re too close to the ring, and Johnson is quick to grapevine his arms and legs around the ropes, desperate to not get dumped on his head! It works, and Stryke abandons the hold and begins to walk off. Johnson takes advantage and unwraps his legs before dropping to the floor, rolling into the ring to break the count and back out to meet Stryke. Surprisingly, the Australian rushes in quick, and Johnson lashes out with a clothesline to take down the rushing challenger!




Unfortunately for him, Stryke ducks under the clothesline, and turns around, tucks his head under, lifts, and THIS TIME ACTUALLY DOES MURDER JOHNSON WITH A GODDAMN BACKDROP DRIVER ON THE FLOOR!





The crowd EXPLODES as Johnson ricochets dangerously off of the thin mats before coming to a rest on his stomach, his eyes open, but glazed over. Stryke pays for his heavy lifting, grabbing at his back with his face in a grimace as Soapdish begins his count.








Stryke forces his way to his knees, and begins to crawl towards the unmoving Johnson. He stops about halfway, and takes a short breather. Adrenaline is slowly taking over for his back, and it’s not like the champion is going anywhere.











“STRYKE IS A MADMAN! A GOD-DAMNED MADMAN!” shrieks King as Johnson twitches sporadically on the floor, Stryke getting to his feet and dragging Johnson there as well. The Canadian is still largely unconscious, and slumps down into a position that’s much harder to lift.






It takes some work, but finally, Stryke shoves Johnson into the ring, and rolls in himself, breaking the count. With considerable effort, Stryke drapes an arm over the chest of the champion, and Soapdish drops for what might be the last count of the match.




“No, dammit!” cries King.






“This is it!” shouts Pete, more than excited about Johnson finally being dethroned.












“Ha! Johnson has cheated death yet again!” shouts King as Stryke rolls his eyes and slumps over, trying his damndest to not start crying. Johnson makes a half-hearted attempt to sit up, but fails to make it. Stryke stands, and lifts Johnson up to his feet before securing a front facelock, lifting him up and dropping him across the ropes...


“Slingshot brainbustahhh...” begins Pete.


...and taking him up, but with a lightning fast shift in weight, Johnson secures an inverted facelock and takes Stryke down to the mat, and rolls over into a back-mounted dragon sleeper!


“LAND OF NOD! I hate that Johnson had to steal a submission from LANDON, but it’s certainly effective. And with Stryke’s back hurt, I’m not sure how long he can last!”



The answer is not very, as Stryke reaches depserately for the ropes, practically having a seizure in his attempts to reach the ropes. One particular swing brings him as close as he may very well get, and the his fingertips graze the stands, but it’s not enough for the ref to call the break. And with his back contorted the way it is, there’s only one real option...









“Scapegoat” kicks up to polite clapping from the crowd, and Johnson immediately breaks the hold before grabbing his belt and leaving the ring, staggering up the ramp as he clutches the back of his neck, coming very close to collapsing as he strides up to the entranceway.


“A valiant effort by Stryke, but thanks to using his leader’s submission, the Land of Nod, Johnson pulls out a victory.” says Pete, King nodding in agreement. “BUT UP NEXT! TKO! CUCARACHA INTERNACIONAL! A LADDER MATCH!”



As Pete continues to shill the rest of the PPV, Johnson stumbles through the curtain as we...




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“Well, we have two matches left on this, your Monday Night Ashes 2 Ashes!” Longdogger Pete says, trying to persuade people to watch the rest of the show they’ve already paid for. “The main event… well, on paper it looks like a foregone conclusion, but that’s what people said just before TNT proved them all wrong and won the World Title!”


“Pete, TNT was an annoying, happy idiot,” King says. “However, even he was miles, miles better than Spike Jenkins. Hollywood is toast, and I can’t believe that you’re dumb enough to think he has a chance!”


“Stranger things have happened!” Pete counters. “However, now we have a match where the outcome is literally hanging in the balance - hanging right above the ring, in fact!” The Miami Menace continues bravely on in the face of King’s appalled groan, informing the viewers “TKO and Cucaracha Internacional both gave up their Tag Title belts earlier today and both straps are now suspended above the ring as we await the start of this ladder match!”


Abruptly the lights drop in the Tokyo Dome - not a complete blackout but the atmosphere has become very dim, the two huge funeral pyres and the flaming ‘Ashes 2 Ashes’ logo providing most of the light. For a few moments this flickering illumination continues before…









‘Megalomaniac’ by Incubus kicks up over the PA system and the Smarktron starts to flash up the words ‘Cucaracha Internacional’ as well as clips of the various members doing their thing in the ring. However, the crowd reaction is perhaps not quite what would be expected.




“Fans, you are not hearing things,” Longdogger Pete assures the viewing public, “Landon Maddix and Jay Hawke, the Tag Team Champions, are not only coming out first but are being cheered as they do so. I appreciate that this spectacle is rather bizarre, but I assure you that it will all be explained shortly…”


Sure enough, Landon emerges from the backstage area at the top of the badass, kickass, fucking HUGE ramp that snakes its way down to the ring, and spreads his arms wide to soak in the cheers from his adoring public. After a few seconds of basking in this probably undeserved glory La Cucaracha begins to stride down to the ring, followed moments later by the robe-wearing figure of his companion and tag team partner.


“Ladies and gentlemen,” Funyon begins, announcing in English because damn it we’re not going to give these foreigners an easy time of it, “the following contest is a tag team ladder match and is for the SWF World Tag Team Titles! The title belts are currently suspended above the ring and the first team or team member to successfully unhook both belts will win the match! Introducing first, at a combined weight of 434lbs, they are the reigning and defending Tag Team Champions; from Huron, South Dakota, this is LANDON… ‘LA CUCA-RA-CHAAAAAA’… MAAAAAAAAD-DIIIIIIIIXXXXXXXXXXX! And his tag team partner, from Cleveland, Ohio; he is the reigning SWF International Champion, this is ‘The Dean Of Professional Wrestling’, JAAAAAAAYYYY… HAAAAAAAWWWWWWWWKE!!”


Maddix and Hawke are about halfway to the ring by now and while Hawke is maintaining an aloof presence Landon is going into ‘crowd whore’ mode, clearly revelling being the apple of everyone’s eye again.


“Look at him,” Suicide King snorts, “he makes all this big noise and postures about not caring about the fans, but the moment someone starts to cheer him he’d pull his pants down and shove a carrot up his BUTT if it’d get them to continue. He’s a pathetic kiss-ass with no standards.”


“Not that I want to defend Landon here,” Pete hastily covers himself, “but are you claiming that someone else has no standards, King?”


“I had standards. Screw the fans, screw the rules, look out for number one. The only time I deviated from that was with the Carnival, and I’ve already filed a plea of temporary insanity on that one.”


Hawke climbs the ring steps and climbs through the ropes before removing his robe and unfastening the International Title that rests beneath, which he passes to referee Brian Warner for safekeeping. Meanwhile Maddix hops over the ropes and then mounts a turnbuckle, holding his arms out to the side and grinning cheesily before removing his sleeveless trenchcoat and returning to ring level. La Cucaracha moves over to have a quick pre-match conversation with Hawke…


…and ‘Megalomaniac’ drops out, with immediate effect.




“This is what I was talking about,” LDP explains to the viewers at home, “you can hear the atmosphere here already, and that’s even before Cucaracha Internacional’s opponents have come out!”


The booing is the only noise in the Tokyo Dome for a few more seconds, but then the lights drop down and a familiar pulsing electronic beat starts up. The strobes start to flash over the crowd and the Smarktron begins to display three letters, one after another:












As ‘Tribe’ by Mad Capsule Markets start up, black-clad shapes start to stream out of the backstage area. One after another they take up position on the entrance ramp, lining it all the way down to the ring.


“Fans, that isn’t a guard of honour or a ring escort set up by TKO!” Pete explains, having to half-shout to make himself heard above the incredibly hostile atmosphere, “those are members of the Tokyo Dome security force! These two men are so hated, so loathed in their home country that when they wrestle here now they require protection from the fans! This is also why Landon and Hawke came out first, as the Tokyo Dome officials didn’t want TKO to be waiting in the ring to start the match for any longer than absolutely necessary!”


The strobes are growing brighter now, and as the first guitar riff hits two familiar figures appear at the top of the entrance ramp. The flickering light of the funeral pyres reflect off two pairs of mirror shades and throw odd glimmers onto two floor-length vinyl trenchcoats. And the entire Tokyo Dome fucking erupts into a seething cauldron of hatred and tension.




TORU Takahara and KOJI Kitano stride down the entrance ramp towards the ring, their trenchcoats billowing behind them as they do so. The pair obviously aren’t in any great rush, but at the same time it’s clear that to move too slowly is an invitation to those fans who have started to throw missiles. A PepsiMax Big Gulp hits one security guard on the head as TORU and KOJI walk past, but neither man so much as looks around.


“TKO have a chance to gain another tag team championship in the country where they made their name,” Pete says, “but will the crowd work against them and distract them?”


“Not a chance,” King fires back, “they’re used to this! Chris Card and Natasha aren’t though” the Gambling Man notes, “which may be why they’re not out here…”


Kitano and Takahara reach the ring, whereupon they both hop up to the apron and take hold of the top rope. Then, in a move seen many, many times before by every spectator watching over the previous three years, they vault into the ring - TORU simply swinging his feet over the top rope with impressive agility for a man his size, while KOJI performs a full front flip and lands on his feet - then stand side-by-side and both men give their opponents the double middle finger!




With the pre-match pleasantries out of the way TORU and KOJI shrug off their trenchcoats and pass them through the ropes to the timekeeper. KOJI’s shades follow, but TORU elects to keep his on for the moment. Referee Brian Warner calls the two teams together to explain the rules, but quickly ducks out of the way as the four men just charge and start laying into each other!




There are a few seconds of confused brawling, but then something quickly becomes clear; in a straight-up fight, Cucaracha Internacional are no match for TKO. KOJI drives a roundhouse kick into Hawke’s temple and causes the Dean to slump down to one knee while TORU shrugs off a Landon Maddix knife-edge chop and delivers a thunderous knee to the gut that causes La Cucaracha to double over and wheeze for breath, before the Japanese duo once more flip their opponents off to the fury of the crowd!




…but Landon and Hawke deliver stereo low-blows to their overconfident opponents!




“Why is this ladder match No-DQ!?” King fumes. “This is Japan, the home of tradition; they should be disqualified for such a low, dirty tactic!”


“And keep the belts?”


“…titles should change hands on disqualifications in Japan!”


With both members of TKO suffering extreme cases of testicular trauma Landon and Jay Hawke seem to decide that they might be able to win this quickly; each man grabs an opponent by the hair and throws them out through the ropes, then the team of Cucaracha Internacional exits the ring on the opposite side and begins hunting underneath the ring, presumably for a ladder. Sure enough, after a few seconds Landon strikes paydirt and begins to haul on something, slowly bringing the form of a ladder into view. He and Hawke bring the metal contraption out and place it under the bottom rope in the ring, but they’ve reckoned without the recovery powers of TKO. Even as the two men on the outside look up two pairs of boots charge across the ring and dive into baseball slides, driving the ladder back into the chests of Maddix and Hawke! Cucaracha Internacional stagger away and collapse as the metal drives the breath from their lungs and TKO congratulate each other in the ring (although still wince as they move around).


“I can’t believe they fell for that,” King comments, shaking his head. “Never, ever put the ladder there! You just don’t do it!”


TORU has now grabbed the ladder and lifted it up, then balanced one end on the top rope and slanted the other end down to the floor. He slaps KOJI on the back and points to Maddix and Hawke, then stands on the end of the ladder to stabilise it. Kitano backs off until he touches the far ropes, then runs forward…


…straight up the ladder…


…and jumps off with a corkscrew plancha! His twisting body strikes Hawke square in the chest, but one foot apparently catches Landon in the head and the Cockroach goes down as well!




TORU looked to be considering following KOJI’s dive with one of his own, as in the 6-man on Smarkdown, but the Japanese Hammer restrains himself and repositions the ladder into the middle of the ring before looking upwards. With Cucaracha Internacional disposed off the big man should theoretically have a clear run at the belts and he starts climbing.


“Hey, Landon’s up! LANDON’S UP!” King yells, trying to attract TORU’s attention. The bawling of the Gambling Man does not work however, and La Cucaracha takes a moment to ‘borrow’ a steel chair from a helpful fan before sneaking into the ring. Grinning, Landon sees that he completely fooled Takahara when he pretended to be hit by KOJI’s dive, and his trickery has given him a clear shot at TORU’s back…




TORU stops in his attempts to climb the ladder and lets out a yell of pain, but the big man steadfastly holds on. Landon shrugs and drops the steel chair on the canvas, then climbs up behind TORU before leaping upwards off the second rung of the ladder. For a moment it looks like he won’t make it, but then both hands wrap around TORU’s head and he pulls Takahara backwards and down off the ladder with a So-Dak Moment onto the chair!






TORU rolls away in agony as his spine is punished by the leader of Cucaracha Internacional, but Landon landed hard on his ass and it takes a few moments for his tailbone to recover from the shock. However, as he looks around the former World Champion sees KOJI climbing up to the apron, so he grabs the base of the ladder and even from his sitting position manages to topple it, causing it to come down onto the skull of the Japanese wrestler! KOJI drops off the apron to the floor holding his head and Landon returns his attention to TORU who is now struggling to rise. Maddix gets back to his own feet quicker and boots TORU in the head, causing the bigger man to slump backwards into a seated position against the bottom buckle, then takes hold of the top rope and uses the extra leverage to deliver one… two… three nasty bootscrapes! With TORU clutching at his face Landon turns and runs for the far ropes, then rebounds at even greater speed and launches himself with both feet headed for his opponent’s face!


“Get Licked!” Pete calls as the momentum of Landon’s dropkick bootscrape carries him all the way to the floor, where the Cockroach lands on his feet and proceeds to cockily slap hands with a few fans at ringside. “We haven’t seen that particular piece of egotistical brutality for a while, but Landon Maddix is going old-school here tonight!”


Landon is loving the attention from the crowd, but as he turns back around his mind is drawn back to the match as he sees TORU slumped over the bottom rope and half-out of the ring. With a gleeful grin Maddix grabs his opponent’s head and hauls, toppling Takahara clean out of the squared circle and onto the arena floor. Landon goes to re-enter the ring and claim the Tag Titles… but one large hand clamps around his ankles, as the semi-conscious TORU isn’t giving up yet!


Meanwhile on the other side of the ring KOJI has largely recovered from having a steel ladder dropped on his head (well, as well as you can recover from that sort of thing) while Jay Hawke has finally got his breath back after his opponent’s aerial attack took all the wind out of him. The International Champion uses both forearms to block one roundhouse kick, then ducks another and as KOJI’s momentum spins him around Hawke grabs hold of his opponent before hauling him backwards into the steel guard rail!




KOJI drops to his knees in agony as the nearby fans cheer for all they’re worth. Hawke casts a quick glance across the ring to where Landon is by the announce desks and gives his partner the thumbs-up, then drops to apply a constraining front facelock to his opponent in order to give Landon enough time to reach the belts…


…but of course this relies on Landon being able to get away from TORU. The big man doesn’t stay down easily and it takes several more kicks from Maddix to make him let go. The Cockroach slides into the ring but TORU is still getting back up, so Landon decides that this won’t do; he’ll have to take TORU out of commission once and for all to get enough time to grab the titles. With this in mind he runs for the far ropes and rebounds, only to find Takahara now too close to the ring for any sort of dive. Accordingly La Cucaracha changes his plans at the last second and instead swings his body between the top and middle ropes with the old 605 attack, but instead of booting the face of someone slumped over the second rope his feet connect with the jaw of TORU outside the ring! The Japanese Hammer stumbles back as Landon lands on his feet, and now Maddix sees his chance. He runs to the far ropes once more for as much momentum as possible, rebounds and charges across the ring…


…leaps to the top rope…


…and sails out into the air of the Tokyo Dome with a Spaceman Plancha!




And gets caught in mid-air by the strong arms of TORU Takahara.


“What in the hell!?” Pete exclaims as TORU staggers but continues holding Landon across his chest as if for a fallaway slam, “how did he do that?”


‘How’ is not much of a concern to Landon right now. What La Cucaracha knows is that he’s in deep, deep trouble, and thrash as he might he can do nothing as his opponent drops to one knee with a punishing backbreaker, then straightens up again with Maddix still firmly in his grasp. Landon barely has time to take a breath before the world suddenly moves violently and unexpectedly…




“Blockbuster Slam!” Pete roars, “Blockbuster Slam on the outside! TORU Takahara just performed a standing moonsault with Maddix in his arms and crushed the Cockroach against the floor of the Tokyo Dome!”


“TKO,” King says with a grin, “tag team wrestling and pest control.”


Jay Hawke has caught sight of these unfortunate events from the other side of the ring and decides that it’s clearly time to take decisive action. With that in mind the Dean of Professional Wrestling allows his struggling opponent to muscle up to a standing position, but before KOJI can use his own wrestling talents to find a way out of the front facelock Hawke simply drops back down with a DDT that drives Kitano’s head into the protective matting; not as bad as the entrance ramp, but still easily enough to leave KOJI slumped on the floor and no immediate threat. As the fans in the area give a hearty cheer Hawke turns and heads for the ring, sliding under the bottom rope and grabbing the ladder that still rests on the top rope from where Landon toppled it onto KOJI. He grabs it and straightens it in the middle of the ring, directly under the hanging belts above him… but then stops.


“What’s he doing?” Pete asks, “the belts are there to be taken!”


“Hawke may have questionable choices when it comes to tag team partners, but he’s still smart,” King admits. “He know TORU might be able to stop him.”


Sure enough, Hawke has come to the side of the ring where Landon and TORU were having their confrontation and looks over the top rope to check on the health of his biggest adversary. TORU hasn’t risen since delivering the Blockbuster Slam to Maddix, the disorientation presumably reacting badly with the shots to the head that Landon had delivered previously. Hawke looks down at where the two bodies lie… and locks eyes with TORU Takahara staring back up at him. Once eye contact is made the TKO member abandons his attempts at playing possum and pushes himself back to his feet, then takes a couple of steps to one side and casually pushes the timekeeper off his chair before picking the piece of steel seating up and closing it, ready to use it as a weapon!


“TORU is smart too,” Pete comments, “he knows he’s going to want a weapon to enter the ring with because Hawke has the high ground.”


“But he might not want to enter the ring,” King points out, “Hawke knows he won’t be able to climb the ladder without TORU catching him, and Hawke can’t win the match without climbing the ladder. In fact, Hawke has to take TORU out of action before he can progress towards winning the match!”


Jay Hawke doesn’t want to exit the ring and approach a big man with a chair, but TORU has no interest in presenting his head for a stomping through the ring ropes. A stalemate seems inevitable as TORU makes half-hearted attempts to get through the ropes with Hawke always cutting him off… but then the Japanese Hammer simply grins, and heads for the recumbent form of Landon Maddix, chair in hand!


“If in doubt, club Landon senseless,” King says, nodding, “an excellent plan.”


Jay Hawke is caught in an agony of indecision. On the one hand, he doesn’t want to see his tag team partner at the mercy of a chair-wielding brute like TORU. On the other hand, he still doesn’t want to get out of the ring and face Takahara. His time for making a decision is running out though, as TORU has reached the wheezing Landon and raises his weapon above his head…




…and TORU staggers and falls as Hawke hurls the only available weapon at him; the ladder!




Hawke steps through the ropes, ready to follow up on his attack, but he stops there. TORU has landed face down with the ladder resting across the back of his head, and Hawke sees an opportunity for big gains that don’t normally present themselves to a man with such conservative and submission-based preferences as himself. The Dean of Professional Wrestling gathers himself for a moment, then leaps off the apron…




…and legdrops the ladder into the back of TORU’s head! The big man spasms in pain and tries to roll away but Hawke seems to have hurt his own right leg, at least briefly. However, Landon is now starting to stir after finally managing to cough some air back into his lungs and the two member of Cucaracha Internacional support each other as they get back to their feet. Landon shoots a murderous glance at TORU and starts to reach for the chair that the Japanese Hammer was holding previously, but Hawke grabs his partner’s arm and dissuades him by pointing first at the ladder and then at the title belts suspended above the ring. Landon seems about to argue for a second but then sees the sense in Hawke’s proposition and the Tag Champions grab the ladder, then manoeuvre the metal contraption under the bottom rope and into the ring. This time no TKO boots send it flying back at them and both men follow it in, then combine once more to set it up. Landon indicates that Hawke should climb and Jay does so… but then pauses as he looks over to where he left KOJI lying and realises that the smaller TKO member is no longer there! He shouts a warning to Landon who runs to that side of the ring to check, but as he does so a long-haired shape slides into the ring behind them both…




Landon, with the instincts of a natural heel who knows when and why the crowd boo, whirls around and charges at the sneaking KOJI. Unfortunately La Cucaracha slightly mis-times his rush and Kitano rolls forward to let Maddix’s elbow smash pass harmless over him, then comes up with his hands on the ladder. A quick heave sends it toppling to one side and Jay Hawke with it, and as the Dean tries to jump to safety he only finds his feet landing in a position to straddle the top rope…


“Ouch,” Suicide King comments with a sad shake of his head.


As Jay Hawke explores his own private world of groinal pain Landon has now caught up with KOJI and grabs the Japanese wrestler from behind before dropping backwards and bringing his knees in an apparent attempt to sever Kitano’s spine with the Mount Crushmore! KOJI rolls away in pain but tries to get back up to his feet, an endeavour that Landon graciously helps him with before ramming his head into the top turnbuckle! As Kitano’s head bounces off Landon maintains his grip on his opponent’s hair before using his leverage to rake KOJI’s eyes along…




















…rope! Then thumps his head into the turnbuckle they’ve just reached for good measure!








KOJI staggers away firing off ghost punches at the air, half-blinded. Landon takes a moment to flip his hair back and soak in the cheers of the crowd, then as KOJI turns La Cucaracha takes a neat sidestep-




-and drives his boot into his opponent’s jaw with the Maddix-Kick that was much cooler when it was the Sweet Cuca Music. Regardless of naming decisions however, it is still enough to drop KOJI Kitano to the mat and send another cheer through the Tokyo Dome! Maddix grins around at the crowd, then steps up to KOJI and jumps onto his opponent’s chest with a double stomp, then instantly drops into a back senton. From there the cocky South Dakotan takes a quick moment to preen his hair again… until KOJI reaches up and tries to tug it out!




Now it’s Landon’s turn to yell in agony, and his screams of pain don’t change when KOJI switches his attack to the eyes! The member of TKO gets painfully to his feet and grabs Landon’s head again before snapmaring La Cuaracha over, then delivers a stunning kick to the back of the head. Maddix topples sideways with his head spinning and his eyes watering and KOJI pauses to give him a double middle-fingered salute… but he turns around into a leg lariat from a recovered Jay Hawke!




The Dean of Professional Wrestling picks himself up despite still moving a little gingerly, but KOJI is a hard man to put down and Hawke decides he needs a weapon. He grabs the ladder as Kitano staggers back up to his feet and drives it at him, but it’s unwieldy and KOJI manages to grab the end! Each man struggles for a moment without success, but then a noise causes Hawke to look around and he sees TORU Takahara climbing through the ropes with bad intentions writ large on his face! The Dean seems frozen in place as TORU charges him, but then moves sideways at the last moment to bring the other end of the ladder into conjunction with the running TORU’s midsection, the resulting impact not only halting the Japanese Hammer but ramming the other end into the gut of his tag team partner KOJI!




Both members of TKO drops to their knees and clutch their stomachs as the wind is driven out of them, but Hawke hasn’t finished yet. He picks the ladder up and puts it over his shoulders in a Fireman’s Carry, then as TKO start to stand he begins to spin in a circle and brings each end of the metal contraption crashing into TORU’s and KOJI’s heads!




Both men go down to the canvas this time, and as the Tokyo Dome cheers Hawke’s performance the man from Ohio stops spinning, fights the moment of dizziness and set up the ladder again with a view to go for the belts… but TKO are getting up again! Hawke sighs visibly and shoulders the ladder once more, then begins turning…




…but TORU and KOJI duck, allowing the weapon to pass over their heads this time, then charge! Hawke is caught off-guard and can’t either stop spinning or move from the spot, allowing KOJI to launch both feet at him with a running dropkick to the chest while TORU goes low and uses his shoulder to take out the right leg that was dropped across the ladder previously!


“Chop Block!” King calls as Hawke gets hit high front and low rear, falls back quick and hits the ground hard as the ladder skitters away. “That move allowed Hawke and Landon to beat the Nightmare Express, and now it’s been used on him!”


Sure enough, Jay Hawke appears to be in all kinds of trouble as he clutches at his right leg. Meanwhile KOJI has picked the ladder up and rests it at an angle against the corner post, then gestures to the struggling Hawke. TORU grabs the Dean of Professional Wrestling and hauls him up into a standing headscissors, then places him in a double underhook…


“Hold on fans, this is going to get nasty!” Longdogger Pete warns as TORU hoists Jay Hawke up…




…and delivers the Tiger Driver onto the slanted ladder so hard it bends!




TORU raises one arm in the air in celebration, then spits on Jay Hawke’s mangled body as the crowd roars its disapproval. KOJI, still sore and bruised from his earlier run-in with Maddix turns around-




-into another Maddix-Kick! The smaller member of TKO hits the canvas hard and TORU looks around to see what’s happened to his partner, only for the lunging Landon to grab him around the head and shoulders before dropping backwards with the Complete Shot!




The crowd start cheering again as Landon sits up, looking desperately around to make sure that KOJI isn’t getting up again. But no, the long-haired Japanese wrestler is staying down for once and La Cucaracha breathes a sigh of relief. However, as TORU rolls away clutching his head Landon goes to check on Jay Hawke, and what he finds does not please him…


“Well, at least Landon’s making sure his partner’s OK,” Pete concedes grudgingly, “I guess he has some concept of team spirit.”


“Look again Dogger,” King laughs, “he’s just mad because both members of TKO are down but the ladder’s useless!”


It could be that the Suicide King is being a little unfair to Landon Maddix. It could be. Or then again, the Gambling Man might be right on the money as Landon finishes checking Hawke over and grabs the ladder. Unfortunately it is as King so rightly pointed out, useless, and after struggling with it for a few seconds Maddix gives up in disgust and hurls it over the top rope to the floor before rounding on the dizzy TORU Takahara and firing boot after boot into the big mans’ head! After a few seconds Maddix gets a hold on himself and rolls out of the ring before lifting the apron and checking underneath. An expletive is heard as Landon apparently fails to instantly locate another ladder… but what he does find is brought out into the harsh lights of the Tokyo Dome by a suddenly grinning Cockroach!


“Uh-oh,” Pete says in apprehension, “we have a table in play! I repeat, tables are in play!”


Landon hurriedly sets up the table on the floor outside the ring, then dives back under the ring and hauls another one out. This time La Cucaracha slides it into the ring and scuttles after it before leaning his wooden device of destruction against the turnbuckles in the far corner. With that done Maddix grabs the still-woozy KOJI and hauls him back out of the ring before delivering a couple of stunning elbows and laying the long-haired wrestler on the first table!


“This looks awfully complicated,” King remarks, taking a slurp of PepsiMax, “in my day we just hit people with a baseball bat painted black.”


With KOJI on the table Landon slides back into the ring, then climbs to the top turnbuckle and prepares to jump… but suddenly hears a noise behind him and looks over his shoulder to see TORU back up and charging him! Instead of going through with his plan Landon leaps backwards, twisting in midair to deliver a mushroom stomp to the onrushing Takahara and landing on his feet behind the Japanese Hammer! TORU runs chestfirst into the turnbuckles and rebounds where Landon grabs him, turns him around-




-and receives a knee to the gut.




TORU proceeds to kneel down in front of the winded Maddix and place both hands together, apparently begging for mercy… then reaches up and jabs one finger into La Cucaracha’s eye! Landon whirls away with his vision blurred by tears but now it is TORU’s turn to grab his opponent, and the Japanese Hammer Irish whip Maddix towards the propped table in the far corner! However, Landon has other ideas and reverses the momentum on the surprised Takahara-




-who goes through the table headfirst!




Landon grins as the crowd cheer, and with Jay Hawke finally starting to stir Maddix decides to try and take his other opponent out of the match for good. Accordingly he climbs back to the top rope and raises both arms above his head…




…before jumping off, coming down backfirst with a senton splash!




“Ouch,” Suicide King remarks.


“HE MISSED!” Pete bawls. “KOJI rolled aside at the last second, and Landon Maddix crashed and burned on the Sent From Above!”


“These damn tricksy Japanese,” King comments, “I remember TORU moved aside at the last moment when Zyon tried to Final Flash him through our announce table, d’you remember that Pete? And Zyon ended up being out for a few months.” King snorts in laughter. “Wow, I’d hate for that to happen to Landon. That’d be, um… tragic.”


Landon Maddix is down in the wreckage of a table on the outside. TORU has rolled out of the ring after going headfirst through a table in the far corner, and appears to be barely conscious. The only two moving people in or around the ring, barring referee Brian Warner, are KOJI Kitano (who has had Landon Maddix hitting him repeatedly in the head) and Jay Hawke (who was just Tiger Driver’d through a metal ladder). Understandably, neither man is moving as fast as he once could. In fact, KOJI isn’t trying to get into the ring at all. He’s looking under it…


“Could it be…?” Pete asks.


“Dear Lord, I hope so,” King replies, “if they have to try and win this match on the one ladder they’ve found so far we could be here for a very long time.”


Yes indeed, KOJI has found another ladder! He hauls it out but the long contraption is weighty and difficult for him to handle. Meanwhile Hawke has seen what’s going on, but in the knowledge that he wants the ladder in the ring too he takes a page out of TKO’s book and collapses back into a heap. KOJI doesn’t notice that the Cucaracha Internacional member has even moved and he finally slides the ladder into the ring, then follows it. Hawke’s beady eye tracks KOJI as the long-haired wrestler struggles to get the ladder upright, then begins to move the legs outwards for stability. With them well and truly braced KOJI places one foot on the bottom rung and Hawke makes his move. The Dean of Professional Wrestling lurches up to his feet - and receives a boot to the stomach as KOJI kicks backwards without even looking!




Hawke doubles over and wheezes for breath and KOJI drops back down to the canvas, then gives Hawke the double bird before running for the ropes. Kitano’s normal speed is notably absent but he’s still agile enough to vault off Hawke’s knee and flip over with a necksnap!


“Shining Darkness!” King calls happily. “Hawke, this would never have happened if you’d had JJ Johnson as your tag partner!”


KOJI gets back to his feet in the teeth of the crowd’s boos, then sets foot on the bottom rung of the ladder again. This time Hawke does not spring back to a vertical base and KOJI keeps climbing, ascending the ladder towards the beckoning title belts. One step at a time he keeps going, up towards the gold…


…but there’s suddenly a grip on his right leg.


“What does KOJI have to do to keep Jay Hawke down!?” Pete asks in amazement as the Ohio native clings on despite the pain in his back and neck. “We all knew Jay Hawke was tougher than old boots, but he’s showing us a new streak of determination in this match!”


“I’ll grant you it’s not often that a technician like Hawke gets put into a match where he can be powerbombed through ladders,” King admits, “but he’s coped rather well. Just a shame about his partner, really…”


Hawke clings on, no matter how much KOJI tries to kick him away. Unfortunately for Jay he can’t seem to pull KOJI off either. With this in mind Hawke takes a gamble and releases his grip, allowing KOJI to scamper away up the ladder… but the Dean heads after him, and reaches up to grab Kitano’s tights at the waists! Hawke twists away from the instinctive back-kick this time, then climbs up another rung by pulling himself up on KOJI before reaching up… and applying a chickenwing to Kitano’s right arm as the Japanese wrestler flails desperately at him!


“No!” Pete says in astonishment as the two men grapples unsteadily on the ladder, “Hawke isn’t… he is! He’s trying to apply the Wing Span on the ladder!


KOJI knows that this is bad news, but from where he is he has few options. Normally he could twist or fight his way out of something like this, but without steady footing and room to manoeuvre his technical wrestling ability is virtually useless. He can’t climb further up the ladder with Hawke clinging onto him, and sooner or later they’re either going to overbalance or he just won’t be able to hold on and they’ll fall off. Oh well, if you’re going to fall anyway, might as well do it when you’re ready for it…




“KOJI just threw himself off that ladder,” Pete exclaims, “…but Hawke held on, and he’s got the Wing Span locked in!”


Sure enough, even falling off a ladder and landing on his bad back with KOJI Kitano on top of him isn’t enough to stop Jaw Hawke. The experienced wrestler felt the moment of tension is KOJI’s body before his opponent let go and prepared himself for the worst, and the moment they hit he fought through the pain to not only reapply the chickenwing that got knocked loose on impact but to reach forwards and apply the crossface part of the hold that had so far eluded him! KOJI struggles but he’s well and truly caught now, and all Hawke has to do is hold on until his opponent passes out from the pain and then the belts will be his…


“Um, Jay?” King says, “always check the weather forecast before you make any long-term plans.”




“TORU Hammer breaks up the Wing Span!” Pete shouts as TORU Takahara comes off the top rope to drive a flying kneedrop into Jay Hawke’s head. The Miami Menace then turns to his commentary partner.




“I dunno,” King shrugs, “TORU came from the sky. Like rain, or whatnot.”


“I wish we knew what had happened to Bobby Riley,” LDP sighs, turning back to the action.


TORU hasn’t got up from his landing yet as he shakes his head to clear it, still clearly suffering from his trip through the table. KOJI is holding his right shoulder in some pain, but Jay Hawke seems more or less out of it. TKO get back to their feet and slap each other, checking that the other man is up to the task, then turn towards the ladder…




…and Landon Maddix comes out of left field, nearly taking TORU’s head off with a chairshot! The happy fan who donated his seating implement jumps up and down in delight as La Cucaracha leans on his weapon wearily and faces off with KOJI, whose right arm still isn’t moving properly and who has already been hit in the head by Landon Maddix as many times as anyone would want to be in one day. The two wrestlers start to circle each other around the ladder, neither one wanting to make the first move - until Landon suddenly stops and simply waves, making ‘come on’ movements to the backstage area! KOJI looks puzzled for a moment, but then…


“It’s JJ Johnson!” Pete shouts in amazement as the Canadian wrestler appears at the top of the entrance ramp and begins jogging down. “He’s already been out here once tonight, defending the Cruiserweight Title against Stryke, but now he’s coming down to help Cucaracha Internacional keep the Tag belts!”


Landon simply grins at KOJI with the odds now starting to swing definitely in his favour, but he is surprised when KOJI smiles back at him. Maddix tilts his head to one side curiously, but Kitano points past him back up at the entrance ramp. Cautiously, well aware that this could be a trick to put him off-guard for a surprise attack Landon looks around…


…and sees a familiar figure charging down the entrance ramp after the oblivious Johnson!


“IT’S BLAZENWING!” Pete yells in amazement. “Cucaracha Internacional made a fool of him a couple of weeks ago and now he’s coming up behind JJ Johnson with-”




“-a Singapore Cane,” King finishes with a touch of relish as Johnson stumbles and goes down under the former-jobber’s wild swing. Landon looks on in horror as his backup goes down… then gets back up again and whirls around to confront his attacker! David Blazenwing wades in again and swings his weapon, but Johnson just catches it in mid-air and wrenches it out of his grip. The former Ultimate Fighter then points a trembling finger at his suddenly unarmed enemy and wheezes something along the lines of ‘what the fuck is your problem!?” Even someone as deluded as Blazenwing can’t be faulted for backing away from an enraged JJ Johnson… but as all this unfolds, Landon is growing increasingly desperate in the ring as the third member of Cucaracha Internacional is distracted! Maddix turns away from the grinning KOJI once more, just to see if he can attract Johnson’s attention…


…and a man who up until now has been studiously reading a newspaper in the front row all evening leaps up and vaults the guard rail, revealing himself to be none other than Chris Card!




Technical Perfection pulls a small black cylinder from his suit pocket and hurls it over the ropes to KOJI, who catches it expertly. Then as Card slides into the ring Maddix turns back around, and KOJI pulls the trigger on the Aerosol Equalizer!






Landon staggers backwards, clutching at his eyes, and the steel chair drops from his grip. With La Cucaracha stumbling around Chris Card motions for KOJI to get up the ladder, then crosses his thumbs over his head before-




“Calling Card!” King yells as Card’s foot smashes into the blinded Landon’s chest cavity, “that’s how you do a Super Kick, Landon!”


KOJI is climbing the ladder, but Cucaracha Internacional aren’t giving up yet! Hawke has managed to stagger up and he first delivers a forearm to Card’s back that topples the British ex-pat through the ring ropes, then begins to climb the ladder on the opposite side to Kitano! For a moment it looks like a real race will ensue… but then Hawke suddenly finds a head thrust between his legs (oo-er, matron) and his grip on the ladder being broken as TORU takes him onto his shoulders in an Electric Chair position. The Japanese Hammer is still dizzy from the chairshot, but as he staggers sideways KOJI sees his opportunity and leaps from the ladder to land astride Hawke’s shoulders even as he sits on TORU’s…


…KOJI spins around to face the same way as his tag team partner and their opponent…


…then snaps backwards to complete the reverse hurricanrana!




“TKO SPIKE!!” Pete bellows as Jay Hawke’s head gets driven into the canvas. “That move defeated Wildchild and got TKO the Number One Contendership - could it have effectively won them the titles?”


TORU and KOJI rise to their feet and head for the ladder. Landon is wheezing for breath and still appears to be blinded. Jay Hawke has been knocked into next week. JJ Johnson has just finished delivering the UDV to David Blazenwing on the entrance ramp and turns around to find to his horror that matters have progressed considerably, but even as he tears towards the ring with all his considerable speed Chris Card rolls back in and grabs the chair that Landon dropped, then stands guard! Johnson circles the ring like a wolf on the wrong side of a chainlink fence, but he can do nothing as TKO climb higher…




…grab the title belts…










…and unhook them!








Standing atop the ladder, one man on each side, TORU and KOJI proceed to carefully, almost lovingly, wrap the straps of the SWF World Tag Team Titles around their waists and fasten them. Then both men turn to look out at the crowd, a 55,000 capacity crammed into the Tokyo Dome for the SWF’s visit. 55,000 of their fellow countrymen who paid to get in tonight.


Laughing, TORU and KOJI give the entire crowd a double middle-fingered salute.




JJ Johnson has stopped pacing now the match is lost, but he does grab Landon and Hawke and haul them out under the bottom rope, perhaps not trusting TKO not to do something embarrassing or humiliating to them as a victory celebration (and to be fair, he’s probably got a point), as well as making sure that he has Hawke’s International Title so the two rudos don’t indulge in another spot of title-stealing. Meanwhile, once TORU and KOJI are back down the ladder Chris Card raises their hands in triumph as they stare out at Cucaracha Internacional, but although Jaw Hawke is still slumped and barely conscious Landon’s vision has cleared enough for him to see what’s going on, and JJ Johnson’s steady gaze doesn’t falter. At least, not until the retreating trio draw level with the body of David Blazenwing, whereupon he looks down long enough to deliver a spiteful kick to the head.


“Fans, we’ve seen a unique match here tonight,” LDP says, “and pretty soon we could see a riot if TKO don’t leave! However, in a match that should have been all about athletic ability the match was actually decided by who used the most foreign objects and outside interference!”


“It was a match between Cucaracha Internacional and TKO, what did you expect?” King snorts. “The spirit of the game? The only spirit TKO are interested in is sake! Landon? He couldn’t win a match fairly if his opponent turned up dead drunk! Or even just plain dead!”


The Tokyo Dome Security Guards have come down the ramp again, which appears to be the signal for the new Tag Team Champions to leave. Grinning, TORU and KOJI don their trenchcoats and buckle them over the top of their newly-won championships, then head back up the ramp (making sure to flip the crowd off as often as possible on the way).


“Well fans, coming up next we have the main event; the World Heavyweight Championship match between El Luchador Magnifico and Spike Jenkins!” Pete shills. “Will Magnifico hang on! Can Spike put his poor form behind him and bring down the longest-reigning World Champion of all time? Only time will tell!”






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The camera quickly cuts away from the frankly pathetic endorsement and to a shot of the inside of the Tokyo Dome, packed to its brim with fifty-five thousands citizens of the most insane city in the world. An eerie silence prevails as these fans, who have been much more reserved than the SWF’s usual audiences, await the final match of the evening with quiet anticipation. A moment later, Hammerfall’s “The Way of the Warrior” begins blasting over the arena’s PA and fills the dead air, exciting some in the audience and startling most. The shot once again cuts abruptly, this time to the announce desk, where Longdogger Pete and the Suicide King greet back the home audience with warm smiles.


“And welcome back to SWF Ashes 2 Ashes, live from the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan!” Pete proudly shouts. “This has been an amazing pay-per-view thus far, one that will surely go down as one of the best in this show’s long and storied history.”


“Such fond memories.” King sighs. “It seems like only weeks ago that Mark Stevens and I were beating the piss out of each other in a steel cage. Gleefully bashing him over the head with a baseball bat...where does the time go?”


“Yes, Ashes 2 Ashes has always been a fantastic event, and tonight’s show is no different.” Pete continues, pointedly ignoring King. “And what’s more, we haven’t even reached our main event yet, which is sure to be - ”


“A gigantic waste of time.” King scoffs. “In one of the most boneheaded booking decisions in this company’s history, it’ll be Spike Jenkins, pathetic pretender to the throne, taking on the fantastic and all-around great guy El Luchadore Magnifico. If I were one of the fans who took the time to squeeze out of their tiny apartment and ride a packed train to get here, I’d be really pissed off right now.”


Pete rolls his eyes. “I’m sure that Magnifico being a quote unquote great guy is an almost-unfair advantage to him in this contest, but you’re acting like Spike Jenkins doesn’t even have a chance at winning tonight.”


King just stares at LDP for a second, his face blank.


“Right. What was I thinking.” Pete sighs. “For those of you unfamiliar with how this match came to be, it all started at Genesis VI, where, in a match that we all got to see via slideshow, Spike Jenkins defeated Tom Flesher with a Top Rope Toxxic Shock Syndrome.”


“I’m still claiming shenanigans on that one.” King grumbles. “I don’t even remember watching that match, and yet a week later they’ve got still shots of it and what’s supposed to be commentating? The only explanation here is that Jenkins has orchestrated a massive conspiracy to make everyone think he beat Tom Flesher and weasel his way into a title shot.”


“King, you’re just upset because Jenkins beat the one guy around here who still idolizes you.” Pete counters. King scoffs loudly at that, but follows it up with nothing.


“In any case…” LDP continues, “Jenkins has gone through, to put it mildly, a hell of a slump since Genesis VI. He hasn’t won a single contest in the past month and a half. Many have questioned whether or not Spike belongs in this match, including Jenkins himself.”


“At least the little creep is aware of how laughably pitiful he is.” King butts in. “With any luck, Spike will break down and cry the second he sees Magnifico, moments before fleeing the ring in fear and shame.”


“That’s ridiculous, King.” Pete responds, annoyed. “Yes, he’s been going through a rough time as of late, but Jenkins managed to beat Tom Flesher clean in the middle of that ring, a feat few can claim to have done. Jenkins is a terrific competitor who’s finally earned his shot at the World Title, and I’m confident that he’s going to make the best of it.”


“I’m sure you are.” King condescendingly affirms. “Meanwhile, those of us with a realistic view on things are going to be enjoying a successful title defense from Magnifico, in which he’ll defeat and humiliate Spike Jenkins. At the same time, no less.”


LDP sighs for what must be the hundredth time this evening. “We could argue all night, but this won’t be settled until the match is over and a winner is declared. So, without any further ado…”


As if on cue, the camera suddenly cuts to the inside of the ring, where Funyon, clad in his usual stunning tuxedo, stands proudly. A second later, every light in the arena is turned to full blast and the SWFTron goes white, temporarily blinding everyone in attendance even as they begin to cheer. The reception only grows louder when the crashing guitars of Lamb of God’s “Black Label” hit the speakers, causing adrenaline to pump through the veins of each and every fan in the stands.




The slow build of comes to a head when Spike Jenkins, preceded by a guttural scream and the flashing of white lights at the entranceway, strides out from the back, cutting through the thick layer of fog that covers the stage. Welcomed by a massive wave of cheers from the now-overexcited audience, Spike kneels at the top of the ramp and crosses his arms, cueing about fifty thousand fans to whip out their excessively-tiny cameraphones and snap a few pictures. His face barely visible thanks to the hood on his sweatshirt, Spike quickly makes his way down the entrance ramp, paying no mind to the hundreds of fans that line either side of it.


“Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is scheduled for one fall, and it is for the SWF World Heavyweight Championship!” Funyon proudly proclaims, drawing a pop of his own for the announcement. “Introducing first, from Hollywood, California, weighing in at two hundred and twenty pounds…HOLLYWOOD SPIIIIIIIIIKE JEEEENNNNNKIIIINNNNSSSS!!”


Spike reaches the ring and rolls beneath its bottom rope, not stopping until he rolls into the middle of the squared circle. Once there, he slowly rises to one knee, one arm on his leg and the other hanging loosely at his said. With the eyes of everyone in the building locked on him, Jenkins finally rises to his feet and pulls back the hood, revealing his face and the expression of ultimate determination painted upon it. Once again, he crosses his arms, the act mimicked by thousands of Spike’s fans within the live audience.


“Just listen to this reception for Spike Jenkins!” Pete shouts, barely audible over the thundering din created by the crowd. “These people have been looking forward to this contest since Genesis VI! They’re ready to see Spike capture the World Heavyweight Championship!”


“Well, good for Spike to get something positive out of this whole experience.” King mumbles, absentmindedly filing down his fingernails as he does so. “When he looks back on this evening, he can remember that moments before being beaten within an inch of his life, tens of thousands of morons came to their feet and whooped incoherently as one.”


After a moment, the lights go back to normal and Jenkins uncrosses his arms. He stands in the middle of the ring, his expression unchanging as he looks out over the gigantic, cheering audience. Spike allows himself to crack a small grin at the crowd’s response, but it’s immediately wiped away a moment later when the lights go out, signaling the entrance for his opponent and leaving the arena in complete darkness.








Atake FDD’s “Tu Final” hits the speakers, accompanied by a burst of red, white, and green pyro. The fireworks illuminated the gathered fog in their respective colors as El Luchadore Magnifico bursts out from the back, his World Title wrapped around his waist and his Mexican Flag flapping gracefully behind him. Illuminated by a single spotlight, Magnifico quickly strides down the entrance ramp, the boos growing in volume the closer he gets to the ring.


“And now, from Mexico City, Mexico, weighing in at two hundred and ten pounds...” Funyon continues, raising his voice to be heard over the displeased crowd. “He is the SWF WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION...EL LUCHADOOOOOOOORRREE MAGNIFICOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!”


Funyon’s spirited announcement doesn’t help Magnifico’s standing with the crowd any, not that he cares. As ELM approaches the ring, his eyes are locked onto Spike, and vice versa. Their gazes go unbroken until Magnifico reaches the ring and rolls beneath its bottom rope. Once inside, he pops to his feet and steps into the center of the squared circle, stealing a quick glare and a sneer at Spike as he does so. With a disgusted look on his face, ELM looks out over the darkened audience for a moment...before thrusting his Mexican Flag high into the air, doing so as the lights are abruptly turned back on throughout the arena. With the now-illuminated crowd booing his every move, Magnifico slowly turns back towards Spike, whose expression of confident determination has remain unchanged while staring holes into the luchadore. ELM notices Spike’s expression and cocks his head to the side, observing Jenkins like a confused dog. The luchadore studies Spike for a few seconds...before bursting out into laughter and using his free hand to point at Jenkins. Spike scowls and struggles to maintain his composure as Magnifico, wiping the tears away from his face as he does so, hands over his World Title and Mexican flag to the waiting ref.


“Christ, Magnifico’s an asshole.” Pete spits, dropping his professional impartiality for a brief moment.


“Oh, lighten up Pete.” King chuckles. “Magnifico, along with the rest of the intelligent people here, knows that this match is a complete joke. He might as well have some fun while he’s here.”


“I doubt he’ll find it as amusing when Jenkins beats his ass and takes the title.” Pete mumbles under his breath.


“What was that?”




Back in the ring, ELM has finally regained his composure and has begun to stretch in the corner opposite Spike’s. The ref puts away Magnifico’s possessions, and, upon seeing that everything is in order, signals for the bell.




“And here we go!” Pete cries. “Magnifico will defend his World Title for the second time, on this occasion against Spike Jenkins! Will Jenkins break free of his slump and be victorious tonight, or will ELM’s reign of terror continue?”


“Reign of terror.” King quickly responds, earning himself a quick scornful glare from Pete.


After the bell, Magnifico turns towards Spike and confidently strides out of the corner. Jenkins remains motionless, still not quite completely calm and wanting to regain his composure before starting. He takes a deep breath, steps out of the corner, and comes face to face with Magnifico. Wearing an insolent smirk on his face, ELM looks up to Spike, daring him to make the first move. Jenkins just stands in front of Magnifico, sizing him up, knowing without a doubt in his mind that he can beat the man standing before him.


It’s at that point that ELM slaps Spike across the cheek, raising a welt that’s going to annoy him severely for the next couple days.




His head knocked to the side by the force of the blow, Spike stares off into space for a moment, his mouth agape. He hears Magnifico chuckle, and that’s when what ELM just did hits him full on. Spike grits his teeth and lashes out with his right hand, driving it into Magnifico’s cheek with a wild punch! As if expecting that, ELM immediately responds with one of his own, beginning a brawl between the two and cueing the crowd to cheer their little hearts out in support of Spike.


“Magnifico’s little show of disrespect was not appreciated by Jenkins.” Pete observes, amused. “This match gets off to an explosive start - ”


“Most cliché phrase in the book.” King interrupts.


“- as Magnifico and Spike simply brawl it out in the center of the ring.” Pete finishes, annoyed.


Spike and ELM evenly exchange blows for a few moments, until Jenkins manages to land a quick left-right combination, stunning the luchadore somewhat and backing him up a few steps. Taking advantage of Magnifico’s momentary wooziness, Spike grabs the luchadore by the arm and whips him across the ring, sending him rushing towards the far ropes. He bounces off of said ropes and charges back towards Spike, who lashes out with his leg as Magnifico approaches, looking to drive his foot into ELM’s face with a Roundhouse Kick! However, ELM manages to duck beneath the kick and continue running, bouncing off of the ropes behind Spike as Jenkins quickly spins around to face the luchadore. Magnifico charges towards Jenkins once again, and this time, Spike greets him by throwing his arm violently into the air, looking to slam it into ELM’s neck and land his signature Lariat! But Magnifico once again manages to duck beneath one of Spike’s extended limbs, this time spinning behind Jenkins as he does so and capturing him in a Rear Waistlock! ELM immediately hoists Spike into the air, which cues Jenkins to struggle and flail wildly, preventing Magnifico from lifting him any higher! ELM begrudgingly puts Spike back on the mat, and as soon as his feet hit the ground, Jenkins quickly thrusts his elbow backwards, slamming it into Magnifico’s skull to the great delight of the live audience! ELM’s grip is weakened enough for Spike to break free and make a dash for the far ropes, which he bounces off of as the seemingly-dazed luchadore shakes off the acute sharp pain in his forehead.


“Magnifico manages to dodge both of Spike’s initial strikes, but then can’t do anything with the Rear Waistlock he trapped Jenkins in!” Pete reports. “Spike fought his way out of it and looks ready to take advantage of ELM’s dazed state.”


Almost immediately coming off of the ropes, Spike suddenly dives feet first at the luchadore, aiming them directly at his shins with a Soccer Tackle! Spike is mere millimeters away from connecting with the Tackle when Magnifico suddenly leaps into the air, jumping above the sliding Jenkins just in time to avoid the attack! ELM hits the mat with the back of his shoulders and rolls to his feet, doing so as Spike pops to his on the other side of the ring. Both men spin to face each other at the same time, tensed up and ready for whatever their opponent might throw at them. The appreciative crowd applauds and cheers respectfully as Spike and ELM slowly relax and begin to circle each other around the ring; Magnifico wearing an infuriating grin from ear to ear, Jenkins staring coldly and intently at the luchadore.


“I’ve gotta say, Spike’s exceeded my expectations thus far.” King admits. “Contrary to what I predicted, he didn’t flee in a girlish panic upon catching sight of Magnifico. Good for him.”


“There’s also the fact that he fought his way free of ELM’s Rear Waistlock and came very close to taking out his legs with a Soccer Tackle.” Pete helpfully adds.


“I’m not going to give out accolades for things Spike almost does.” King snaps. “Maybe when he connects with that ridiculous Tackle or one of those silly kicks he’s so proud of, I’ll be in a position to give him begrudging yet insincere praise. Maybe.”


ELM and Spike slowly approach the center of the ring and one another, pacing around the canvas until they’re both within arm’s reach of each other. When that happens, both men simultaneously lunge forward and lock up in the middle of the ring, pushing each other back and forth and vying for control of the match. After a moment, ELM manages to pull Spike into a Side Headlock, wrenching away on his neck as Jenkins looks for a way to escape the hold. He decides on elbowing Magnifico in the stomach as a means of escape, doing so repeatedly in an effort to weaken the luchadore’s hold. The strikes do just that, allowing Spike to break free of the Headlock and dash towards the far ropes. As Spike bounces of off said ropes, Magnifico suddenly charges towards him and lashes out with his arm, aiming it at Jenkins’ throat with a Lariat! Spike manages to duck beneath ELM’s outstretched arm and continue running, bouncing off of another set of ropes as Magnifico skids to a halt on the other side of the ring. As he comes off of the ropes, ELM suddenly spins around, sidesteps towards Spike, and throws his foot into the air, looking to drive it into Jenkins’ face with a Superkick! However, Jenkins manages to stop dead in his tracks before impact and throw his hands into the air, catching ELM’s foot right in front of his face! Wasting no time, Spike immediately throws Magnifico’s foot to the side, spinning him around on the mat three hundred and sixty degrees. When ELM completes his spin, Spike suddenly thrusts his open palm forward, slamming it into Magnifico’s throat with an unexpected Shotei!


“Boo! Foul!” King cries. “Blatantly illegal blow to the throat!”


“King, the Shotei is perfectly legal and you know it.” Pete rolls his eyes. “You’re just bitter because MacPhisto used to beat you senseless with the same exact strike.” King grumbles and mutters something under his breath, but leaves it at that.


ELM stumbles backwards with his hand on his throat, choking for breath as the pleased crowd cheers and applauds. Before he can get too far, Jenkins grabs the stumbling luchadore by the arm and pulls him into a Front Waistlock, before hoisting Magnifico over his shoulder and falling backwards! Spike holds ELM at just the right position for his neck to land on the top rope, landing another blow to Magnifico’s ability to breath with the Hot Shot! ELM springs backwards off of the ropes and falls to the canvas, both hands on his throat as he struggles to get some air through his damaged windpipe. As the live audience cheers him on, Spike falls to his knees and covers the luchadore, hooking his leg as the ref slides into position and begins counting…




TWO! No! Magnifico kicks out right after two, immediately quieting most of the crowd.


“A second blow to the throat! This referee is failing to fulfill his duties by not disqualifying Spike right here and now!” King shrieks. “Unprofessional! Underhanded! Unsportsmanlike!”


King continues to ramble on incoherently as Spike rolls off of Magnifico and pops to his feet. Still struggling to breathe, ELM begins pushing himself to his feet, only to have Spike grab him by the arm halfway up and violently pull him the rest of the way. Once he’s standing, Jenkins suddenly delivers another Shotei, this one blasting ELM right in the chest and knocking Magnifico into the corner behind him. Spike delivers a few high kicks to ELM’s chest, which doesn’t help his breathing efforts any, before grabbing Magnifico by the arm and whipping him across the ring. Spike dashes after him a second later, running only a few steps behind ELM as he approaches the corner. Magnifico turns, crashes back-first into the corner, and then immediately throws his foot wildly into the air, luckily connecting with the face of the charging Spike Jenkins! Spike, a hand over his face, curses loudly and stumbles away from the luchadore. After a moment, Jenkins spins back towards Magnifico, and the luchadore greets his return by throwing his knee into Spike’s gut, doubling him over in front of the corner. Moving quickly, ELM steps to Jenkins’ side, grabs him by the waist of his shorts and the scruff of his neck, and then throws Spike forward, driving him head-first into the corner’s steel post!




Jenkins cries out in agony as he stumbles backwards and falls to the canvas, cradling his head in his arms. Spirited boos pour in from every part of the arena as the smirking luchadore falls to his knees and covers Spike, hooking his leg as the ref slides into position and begins counting...




TWO! No! Spike kicks out after two, taking only a brief respite from the cradling of his throbbing head.


Pete winces. “Yeesh. Jenkins takes an absolutely brutal shot to his skull, as ELM just throws him head-first into the corner post.”


“Serves him right.” King boldly and unsurprisingly states. “After cowardly targeting Magnifico’s delicate and precious throat, it’s more than appropriate for ELM to do as much damage to his skull as humanly possible.”


Magnifico grabs Spike by the hair and stands up, painfully pulling Jenkins to his feet as he does so. The second Spike’s standing, ELM uses his grip to violently drive Spike’s head forward and into the nearby corner, earning himself a fresh wave of boos from the annoyed audience as he does so. Jenkins collapses back first into the corner, dazed and disoriented by the agony drilling incessantly into his brain. Meanwhile, Magnifico slowly, dramatically pulls his arm back, and then...








The legacy of Ric Flair is shown to be known the world over, as fifty thousand fans gleefully “whoo” despite the man doing in the chopping. Spike gasps and leans out of the corner, only to be immediately pushed back into it by a grinning Magnifico. Once Jenkins is up against the turnbuckles again, ELM once more draws his arm back, drives it forward, and...








...slices it into Jenkins’ chest a second time, causing the entire area to glow an unappealing bright red color. Once they’re done “whoo”ing, the crowd immediately resumes its booing, doing so as Magnifico once again casually pushes the falling-forward Jenkins back into the corner.


“High-quality Knife-Edge Chops from Magnifico, as he tears into Spike’s chest with reckless abandon.” King gleefully reports.


“ELM looks to be in control of this match at the moment, of course displaying an irritating level of overconfidence at the same time.” Pete reports. “Spike’s in a tough spot right now, but it’ll only take one brief moment of inattention from Magnifico to regain run of the contest.”


Magnifico delivers a few quick punches to Spike’s chin for good measure before grabbing him by the arm, pulling him out of the corner, and whipping him across the ring. Jenkins crashes back-first into the corner’s turnbuckles with ridiculous force, drawing a collective wince from live audience as a stunned Spike stumbles drunkenly towards the center of the ring. ELM bounds out of the corner, looking to take advantage of Jenkins’ disoriented state. As he approaches, Jenkins suddenly steps forward, ducks beneath Magnifico’s arm and tucks his hand in the pit of ELM’s other arm, setting him up for the Minor Threat to the surprise and delight of the live audience! However, their exultation is short-lived, as Magnifico immediately throws his elbow into the side of Spike’s head, stopping Jenkins before he can land the maneuver. After landing the Elbow Strike, Magnifico throws his knee directly into Jenkins’ gut, doubling him over in the center of the ring. ELM’s then easily able to pull him into a Front Headlock, right before lifting Jenkins high into the air, holding him perpendicular to the ground as the crowd looks on with baited breath. After a moment’s delay, ELM suddenly falls onto his back, pulling Spike down with him and driving his skull directly into the canvas with a Brainbuster! Jenkins flops to the mat and is immediately covered by Magnifico, who floats onto Spike while the fans loudly voice their displeasure with the whole situation. ELM reaches back and hooks Jenkins’ leg as the ref slides into position and begins counting...




TWO! No! Spike gets a shoulder up at two and a half, drawing a smattering of hopeful cheers and applause from the crowd.


“Magnifico seems to be localizing his attacks squarely on Spike’s head and neck, which - ” Pete begins.


“Which is an amazingly brilliant plan of attack.” King interrupts. “Not only do both of Magnifico’s regular finishers focus on the head and neck, but his most powerful submission as well. Jenkins’ chances at winning this match have gone from non-existent to even more non-existent.”


ELM rolls off of Spike, grabs him by the arm, and then stands up, pulling Jenkins to his feet with him. Magnifico then uses his grip to whip Spike across the ring, sending him charging towards the far ropes. As Jenkins bounces off said ropes, ELM jumps high into the air and extends his legs, apparently looking to take Spike down with a Hurricanrana. However, he jumps a moment too soon, as Spike manages to hook his arms around the ropes and abruptly stop his momentum as ELM hangs in the air, suddenly without a target! As Magnifico falls back to the mat, Spike unhooks his arms and explodes off of the ropes, throwing his foot into the air and slamming it directly into ELM’s face the moment his feet hit the ground! A massive cheer and an “UHWAHH!” rise from the pleased crowd as Magnifico is knocked violently to the mat by the raw power of Spike’s Yakuza Kick. Jenkins immediately falls to the canvas and covers the luchadore, hooking his leg as the ref slides into position and begins counting...




TWO! No! Magnifico gets a shoulder up at two and a half. ELM rolls onto his stomach, a hand on his face, as an undeterred Spike climbs to his feet next to him.


“Spike just BLASTS Magnifico in the face with a Yakuza Kick and retakes control of the match in dramatic fashion!” Pete excitedly reports.


“The move sure seemed to be a big hit with this audience.” King states in a conspiratorial tone. “Goddamn Japanese gangsters...they’ve invaded our arena! None of us are getting out of here alive! We’re all going to be gut like fish by katana-wielding thugs!”


Pete buries his face in his hands and sighs as a panicked King begins to berate the confused audience members directly behind him. Meanwhile, Spike reaches his feet, grabs Magnifico by the arm, and jerks him to his feet, before guiding the dazed luchadore into the center of the ring. Once there, Jenkins drives the sharp tip of his boot directly into ELM’s solar plexus, sending a jolt of pain rushing through the luchadore’s body and causing him to double over. With Magnifico temporarily incapacitated and bending over, Spike suddenly makes a break for the ropes behind the luchadore, apparently looking take ELM back to the canvas with the Phantom Neckbreaker! Jenkins bounces off of the ropes and charges back towards Magnifico, but before he can leap into the air and attempt the Neckbreaker, ELM suddenly falls onto his back and throws his feet behind him, jamming them right into Spike’s stomach! Magnifico then rolls forward, pulling Jenkins with him, and kicks his feet out, propelling Spike across the ring with a Monkey Flip! Jenkins hits the mat hard, landing awkwardly on his back and shoulders several feet away from Magnifico. However, he’s only temporarily stunned, as Spike scrambles to his feet a moment later. Unfortunately, ELM’s ready and waiting for him, as the luchadore sidesteps towards Jenkins the second he stands and throws his foot into the air, slamming it into Spike’s chin with ridiculously stiff Superkick!






Jenkins is knocked backwards by the force of the kick and over the ropes behind him! The anxious crowd holds their breath as Spike tumbles to the ground, and winces as one when Jenkins lands on the thinly-padded floor, falling square on the back of his neck! A wave of earnest boos pours in from the crowd as ELM stands in the middle of the ring, smiling at his own handiwork as he watches Spike writhe in pain on the outside. Meanwhile, the referee begins to count Spike out.




“Well, Spike had run of the match for all of fifteen seconds. A new record for him, if I’m not mistaken.” King reports, thoughtfully rubbing his chin as he does so. “It’s too bad that immediately upon losing control, Magnifico loosened his jaw with a kick infinitely stronger than his and sent him flying to the outside with a speed that could have broken Spike free of the surly bonds of earth.”


“...are you quite done?” Pete asks, annoyed.


“Hmm...yes.” King begrudgingly admits.


After a moment’s rest, Magnifico hits the mat and rolls to the outside, where Spike has begun to climb to his feet. Jenkins reaches his hands and knees and starts crawling his way towards the ring, hoping to grab the apron and use it to aid his ascent. Unfortunately, as he’s reaching out to grab it, ELM suddenly and viciously drops his elbow on the back of Spike’s neck, immediately knocking him back to the floor!




The fans immediately get on Magnifico’s case, booing and cursing out the luchadore as he immediately scrambles back to his feet and begins stomping away at the back of Spike’s neck. Jenkins covers the area up with his hands the best he can and rolls away from the luchadore, determined to not allow Magnifico to do any more damage to his already-hurt neck. Scoffing at Spike’s attempts to defend himself, ELM abruptly stops his kicking, grabs Jenkins by the scruff of his neck and the waist of his shorts, and begins to pull him to his feet.




The second Jenkins is standing, Magnifico suddenly charges towards the nearby guardrail, dragging along a stunned Spike Jenkins with him! As he approaches the rail, ELM suddenly throws Jenkins forward, driving his dome directly into the steel guardrail with a sickening amount of force! The entire audience seems to cringe as one right before booing and taunting Magnifico as loudly as they can, doing so while Spike cradles his head and curls up in pain on the floor.




“Goddamn!” Pete winces. “We’ve seen Magnifico do this before; if he’s working over an opponent’s head and neck and is given the opportunity to do so, ELM won’t hesitate to simply drive his foe’s skull directly into that unforgiving steel guardrail.”


“So simple, and yet so effective.” King adds, smiling from ear-to-ear. “I’m surprised more of our competitors don’t take full advantage of the ring of steel we provide to slam their opponents into.”


“Most of our competitors aren’t as vicious and ruthless as Magnifico.” Pete counters, matter-of-factly.


“Yeah, I’ve noticed that too. What’s their deal?” King earnestly asks.


ELM casually walks back towards the ring, rolls beneath its bottom rope, and then rolls back out, resetting the count as he does so. As he saunters back towards Spike, Magnifico jaws with a few of the incensed fans in the front row, countering their taunts in broken English with the best Spanglish cursing he can think up. When ELM gets back to Spike, he’s just begun to climb to his feet and is still trying to shake off the throbbing pain running through his skull.




Magnifico grabs Spike by the hair and painfully pulls him to his feet, continuing to argue with the nearby fans as he does so. Once Jenkins is standing, ELM guides him over to the nearby corner post and drives his forehead directly into it, drawing another collective wince and a fresh wave of boos from the angry crowd. Magnifico then heads over to the next post, practically dragging Jenkins behind him at this point.




Magnifico once again throws Spike’s forehead towards the post...but this time, Jenkins manages to throw his hands up, catching the steel post and preventing ELM from completing the attack! Before Magnifico can do anything else, Spike throws an elbow backwards and into ELM’s gut, immediately doubling him over. Jenkins breaks free of Magnifico’s grip, puts both his hands on the back of ELM’s head, and then drives it downwards, slamming Magnifico’s face directly into the nearby steel steps to the delight of the live audience!




“Spike finally manages to break free of Magnifico and drive him face-first into those steel steps!” Pete announces.


“Sure, after getting his skull repeatedly bashed in a not a minute ago.” King counters. “Magnifico’s much better at using the most dangerous parts of this death arena we’ve assembled for our SWF Superstars.”


ELM stumbles away from Spike, a hand on his face, as Jenkins shakes off the daze caused by the recent blows to his head and follows after him. Spike comes up from behind Magnifico, grabs him by the shoulder, and turns him around, only for ELM to immediately jam his thumb into Jenkins’ eye! Jenkins stumbles backwards and curses loudly, but is drowned out by the thundering boos pouring in from every corner of the arena.




“Ah, the old standby, a thumb to the eye.” King proudly states, getting a little misty-eyed. “Magnifico’s a credit to heeldom everywhere.”


Almost immediately after the eye poke, Magnifico steps forward and thrusts his arm upwards and into Spike’s chin with a European Uppercut. Barely able to see, Jenkins is caught off guard by the Uppercut and drunkenly flounders into the guardrail behind him. ELM leisurely follows Spike, pointedly ignoring the nearby vocal fans this time.




Magnifico pushes Jenkins up against the rail, pulls his arm back, and...








ELM deliver a stinging Knife-Edge Chop, scrounging up the pain Jenkins felt when Magnifico first cut his chest open with the same move. Grinning to himself, ELM grabs Spike by the arm, leisurely pulls him off the rail, and whips him across the ground, sending Jenkins rushing towards the rail on the other side of the floor.




A moment after whipping Spike, Magnifico suddenly breaks into a sprint, charging after Jenkins as fast as he possibly can! When Jenkins approaches the rail, he thrusts his hands out, grabs the top of it, and pushes himself into the air! Before Magnifico has a chance to stop himself, Spike reaches back with his legs and wraps them around the luchadore’s neck! Jenkins twists ELM’s neck to one side...then violently to the other, throwing him into the perpendicular guardrail to the delight of the nearby fans!




“Beautiful Headscissors counter from Spike Jenkins!” Pete cries. “Spike takes advantage of Magnifico’s blind charge and throws him into the guardrail with an unexpected Headscissors!”


“Spoil sport.” King snorts. “Magnifico’s got a perfectly good beating going, and Spike has to go ahead and ruin it by spoiling ELM’s finale. How disappointing.”


Magnifico slumps against the rail, sliding down it and then onto his knees as Spike dismounts from his own rail. ELM simply kneels there, dazed, as Jenkins stands in front of him, scowling at the man who’s caused him so much pain this evening. Suddenly, Spike lashes out with his foot and quickly kicks him twice in the chest, drawing a wave of anticipatory cheers from the excited crowd!




ELM’s dumbstruck, but he’s lucid enough to know what comes next. When Spike steps back and starts the wind-up for his third kick, the luchadore covers his head in his hands and ducks, determined to not let Jenkins complete his kick combo! After a moment, Magnifico looks up to see if Jenkins has missed his kick...and sees Spike smiling down on him, just waiting for ELM to show his ugly face. Before Magnifico has a chance to duck again, Spike drives his foot out with blinding speed, slamming it into the side of ELM’s head with an amazingly stiff kick! The pop that rises from the audience is ridiculous in its magnitude as Magnifico falls to the floor, his eyes rolling back in his head as his lifeless body hits the ground.




“Charlatan! Conniver! Great spinner of lies!” King screams. “How DARE Spike sully an otherwise sporting contest with such underhanded chicanery?!”


“Christ, calm down King.” Pete rolls his eyes. “It’s not Spike’s fault Magnifico fell for such a simple ruse.”


Immediately after landing the kick, Jenkins rolls into the ring and rolls back out to restart the count and prevent a double count-out. With Magnifico still completely out of it, Spike heads over to the nearby steel steps and picks them up, drawing a wave of anticipatory cheers from the excited crowd. Jenkins unceremoniously drops them right next to Magnifico with an echoing “CLANG!”, right before grabbing ELM by the hair and slowly pulling the thunderstruck luchadore into a Standing Head-Scissors.




With Magnifico beneath him, Spike turns towards the steps, the crowd’s excitement growing by the moment. Jenkins wraps his arms around ELM’s waist, takes a deep breath...and then lifts him into the air, pulling Magnifico onto his shoulders! The crowd roars, but they’re quickly silenced when a panicked ELM begins bashing away at Spike’s forehead, desperate to not let Jenkins Powerbomb him into the steel steps!




Spike reels and takes a step backwards, but refuses to relinquish his grip or let Magnifico down! Unfortunately for him, ELM’s really quite insistent on the matter, as he suddenly pushes himself backwards and off of Spike’s shoulders! As he falls off, ELM wraps his arm around Jenkins’ neck, pulling Spike down with him as he drops and driving his skull directly into the steps with a DDT!






“Hurrah! Magnifico takes advantage of Spike’s ridiculously misplaced overconfidence, reversing his Powerbomb attempt into a graceful, breathtaking DDT!” King waxes poetic.


“Spike had a fine idea, but it just didn’t work out.” LDP grimly replies. “If he could have completed that Powerbomb on the steel steps, Magnifico would have been in serious trouble. Jenkins might have been able to roll him in the ring and get the pinfall right then and there.”


“Yeah, sure, wildly speculate now that Spike failed to hit the move.” King scoffs. “As it is, Spike took another severe blow to his already-damaged head, which only makes the whole situation even sweeter.”


Jenkins slides off of the steel steps and to the ground, completely stunned by the force of the DDT on the steps. A moment later, Magnifico begins to climb back to his feet, cursing under his breath at the fans in the few front rows, who are taunting and shouting at ELM with all the hate they can muster. When Magnifico stands, he grabs Spike by the hair, pulls the listless wrestler to his feet, and then unceremoniously rolls him into the ring. Magnifico rolls in a second later and covers Jenkins, which doesn’t endear him to the crowd any. ELM slowly reaches back and hooks Spike’s leg, doing so as the ref slides into position and begins counting...






THR-No! Spike kicks out right before three, drawing a wave of relieved cheers from the live audience.


“Shoot.” King snaps his fingers. “Thought Spike might have been done for good. Ah well, it’s not like I don’t enjoy watching Magnifico beat the piss out of Jenkins. I don’t object to this going on for a little while longer.”


Magnifico rolls off of Spike and quickly climbs back to his feet, where he begins to kick away at Jenkins’ side, slowly rolling him onto his stomach with each painful blow. Once Spike is on his stomach, ELM grabs him by the back of his shorts, drags him to his feet, and immediately pulls him into a Rear Waistlock! The fans immediately respond with vigorous booing, and only grow louder when Magnifico begins to lift Spike into the air, apparently looking to drive him into the mat with a German Suplex! But before ELM can lift him too high, Spike reaches back with his foot and hooks it around Magnifico’s leg, preventing him from raising Jenkins any higher! Magnifico scowls and puts him back down...only to begin mercilessly bashing away at the back of Spike’s head with his elbow, furious at Jenkins for foiling his attempt at the Suplex! With Magnifico holding him steady with his other arm, Spike has nowhere to go and is too disoriented after the first strike to break free of ELM’s hold! After landing several cringe-inducing blows, Magnifico re-applies the Waistlock, releases a shout of pure, unadulterated rage, and lifts Spike into the air, right before falling backwards and spiking his neck into the canvas with a German Suplex! The fans wince as one upon seeing the impact, but then shift to panicked booing when they see that ELM’s held the bridge! The ref slides into position and begins counting, doing so as Magnifico does his best to keep his body tense and Spike down on the mat...






THR-No! Jenkins breaks free of the hold right before the three count, allowing to crowd to breath a collective sigh of relief as he does so.


“Well, I’ll hand it to Spike, he’s a tough little bastard.” King casually states. “A lesser man would have given up after having the vertebrae in his neck shattered by Magnifico’s legendary German Suplex.”


“Spike’s in a bad way right now, but not all hope is lost for him.” Pete counters. “We just saw Magnifico’s anger get the better of him for Jenkins doing something as simple as countering a Suplex; what Spike needs to do is find a way to take advantage of ELM’s reckless emotional outbursts. Make Magnifico make a mistake.”


ELM scrambles back to his feet after the kickout and begins to wildly stomp away at Spike’s neck, apparently still fairly angry at Jenkins. The crowd’s just getting started with their indignant booing when Magnifico grabs Jenkins by the hair and painfully pulls him to his feet, right before using his grip to lead Spike over to the nearby corner. Once there, ELM pulls him into a Front Facelock and steps backwards onto the corner’s second turnbuckle, causing the live audience to immediately redouble their booing efforts. Magnifico looks out over the crowd, sneers, and earnestly flips them off, drawing in a chorus of enraged boos as ELM leaps off of the turnbuckle! Magnifico begins to twist in mid-air, apparently looking to drive Spike’s skull into the canvas with a Tornado DDT! But before the luchadore can fall onto his back, Jenkins shoots his arms out and wraps them around Magnifico’s waist, grabbing and holding him in mid-air and preventing him from completing the move! Spike then immediately falls backwards, dropping Magnifico’s neck right onto the ropes behind him!


“Another Hot Shot!” Pete excitedly reports. “Spike reversed Magnifico’s Tornado DDT, and now might have a small window of opportunity in which to strike!”


A mighty cheer rises from the crowd as ELM springs off of the ropes and stumbles backwards, stunned and surprised by the sudden blow to his neck. Behind him, Spike is determinedly scrambling to his feet, knowing that he might not get an opportunity like this. ELM drunkenly spins around as he stumbles, coming face to face with Jenkins and cueing Spike to step forward, duck beneath one of Magnifico’s arms, and stick his hand beneath the other! Not wasting a moment, Spike immediately uses his hold to hoist ELM into the air, before quickly and suddenly falling onto his stomach, pulling Magnifico down with him and slamming his body into the canvas with the Highlighter! The pop that rises from the audience is ridiculous in its magnitude as Spike flops onto his back right next to Magnifico, his chest heaving as he stares blankly up at the arena’s lights.


“Highlighter! The Highlighter! Holy shit!” Pete shouts, hardly believing that Spike managed to get the move off. “Spike comes out of nowhere with his signature Sidewalk Slam, his finisher from his SJL days!”


“Yeah, good for him.” King spits. “Too bad Magnifico beat him senseless for the rest of the match, so Jenkins can’t even muster up enough strength to crawl over there and make the cover. Kudos to Jenkins for landing the ultimately-meaningless move, though.”


At first, it seems as though King might be right, as Spike lays motionless on the mat, having not moved a muscle since landing the Highlighter. Slowly, surely, the crowd begins to rally Jenkins on, cheering and shouting at him to get over to Magnifico and cover him.






Over fifty thousand excited Japanese fans get to their feet and chant as one, doing everything in their power to help Spike out. After a few moments, Jenkins finally stirs, turns onto his stomach, and begins to crawl over to ELM’s unmoving form. The cheers and chants only grow louder as Spike slowly, agonizingly claws his way over to Magnifico...before flopping onto ELM’s chest, making the cover as a ridiculously loud pop rises from now-frenzied audience. The ref slides into position and begins counting, the slaps of the mat echoed by the audience’s heavily-accented English...







































THHHHRRRRNNNOOOOO!! ELM gets his shoulder up mere milliseconds before the thee count! The disappointed crowd seems to bury their face in their hands and moan as one, hardly able to believe that Magnifico just kicked out. Jenkins seems just as disappointed as they are, as he rolls off of ELM and pounds the mat, frustrated at having gotten so close to victory only to have it snatched away from him at the very last moment.


“No! Magnifico just manages to kick out of the Highlighter!” Pete reports, unable to hide his disappointment.


“Please. You act like Spike had a chance with getting a pinfall from that ridiculous move in the first place.” King scoffs while wiping away a conspicuous bead of nervous sweat. “Magnifico’s just making it interesting and ensuring that these people get what they paid for. You know, a ticket to this show cost the equivalent forty-three thousand dollars.”


Jenkins slowly climbs back to his feet, trying his best to shake off the frustration he feels and focus on the task at hand. When Spike stands, Magnifico just begins to stir, still significantly stunned from Spike’s Sidewalk Slam. Jenkins grabs him by the hair and painfully pulls ELM to his feet, receiving no assistance from the languid luchadore. Spike then throws Magnifico into the nearby corner, whose turnbuckles ELM impassively leans against while Jenkins bashes away at his chest, stomach, and shoulders with a series of quick, devastating kicks! The delighted fans roar their approval as Jenkins simply beats Magnifico up, the luchadore slumping further and further down in the corner as he spiritlessly absorbs the seemingly endless number of kicks.


“Well, go with what works, I guess.” Pete grins. “At this point, Spike is simply battering Magnifico with those kicks, wearing him down and slowly eroding away at the luchadore’s will to fight.”


Before Magnifico can slide all the way down to the mat, Spike grabs him by the arm, jerks him to his feet, and then whips the luchadore across the mat, towards the far corner. ELM’s just lucid enough to run properly, which he does right before crashing back-first and hard into the corner’s turnbuckles. The dazed luchadore groggily stumbles out of the corner and towards the center of the ring, cueing Spike to suddenly break into a sprint from the other corner, bearing down on Magnifico at a terrifying speed! As Jenkins approaches, he throws his foot into the air, looking to drive it into ELM’s face with the Yakuza kick...only to have Magnifico sidestep the flying foot at the last moment, the sole of Spike’s boot just grazing his cheek! What’s more, right after sidestepping, ELM wraps his feet around Jenkins’ ankles, immediately tripping him up with a Drop Toe Hold! As Spike falls, Magnifico shoots his hands out and locks them around Jenkins face, locking in the Sangria Stretch as both men hit the mat! ELM immediately begins to wrench back on Spike’s head, drawing a heart-rending cry of pain from Jenkins as his damaged neck is torn apart by the deadly submission.


“That’s the end of that.” King gleefully remarks. “Spike did a fine job and provided us with an entertaining match, but it looks like the contest is coming to an end now. Once Jenkins taps out like the pathetic loser he is, we can all regale in Magnifico’s victory before heading back to our coffin-sized hotel rooms.”


“Magnifico’s locked in the Sangria Stretch!” Pete grimly reports, not having listened to a word King has said. “Spike’s taken a beating to his neck throughout the match, and he might be mere moments away from submitting here!”


The panicked fans rise to their feet as one and begin to cheer and shout at Spike, desperately doing their best to motivate Jenkins and get him out of the hold. At the moment, it doesn’t seem to be working, as Spike cries out in agony once more, hardly able to believe that a person can even be in this much pain. The ref gets in Jenkins’ face and asks if he wants to submit, receiving an angry shake of the head from Spike in response. Seeing Jenkins doggedly refuse to submit only spurs Magnifico on, as he pulls back as far as he can on Spike’s neck and flat-out screams at him to give up! Jenkins’ cries of pain are drowned out by the crowd’s chanting, growing louder and louder as Spike suffers under the luchadore’s grasp.






Nearly every fan in attendance shouts Spike’s name, their volume reaching deafening levels as Jenkins’ eyes open wide and his expression twists into one of unrelenting determination. Jenkins begins to shift his weight from side to side, pulling Magnifico along with him as he rocks his body, trying to get onto his back! Realizing what Spike’s trying to do, ELM holds on and tries his best to make Jenkins submit...but can’t do it before Spike rolls onto his back, pulling Magnifico with him and trapping him beneath! A mighty roar rises from the crowd as the ref slides into position, making the count as the panicked luchadore unlocks his hands and struggles to untangle his feet...






THR-No! Magnifico gets his feet free and wriggles out from beneath Spike, greatly disappointing and immediately silencing the live audience.


“Spike countered the Sangria Stretch by rolling onto his back and trapping Magnifico beneath, but ELM managed to escape the pin right before the three count!” Pete reports.


“What utter nonsense.” King spits. “Seeing Spike struggle in vain against insurmountable odds was cute for a little while, but now it’s just getting on my nerves.”


A visibly furious ELM scrambles to his feet, leaving Spike, who still seems to be in a great deal of pain, alone on the mat. The second he reaches his feet, Magnifico begins to wildly stomp away at the back of Jenkins’ neck, drawing a wave of spirited boos from the angered audience. After landing several stomps, ELM bends over, shouts something incomprehensible at Spike, and spits on the back of his head. If the crowd was angry before, they’re flat-out incensed now, voicing their displeasure as loud as they know how while Magnifico grabs Spike by the hair and painfully pulls him to his feet. Once Jenkins is on his feet, ELM pulls him into a Front Facelock and hooks one of his legs, then uses the hold to hoist Spike high into the air! Without a moment’s hesitation, Magnifico abruptly falls onto his back, pulling Jenkins down with him and violently spiking his skull into the canvas with the Barrio Buster! Spike flops lifelessly to the mat and is immediately covered, as Magnifico floats onto him, hooking the leg as the ref begins counting and the worried fans shout at Jenkins to kick out...






THRE-Noo! Spike gets a shoulder up right before the three count, allowing the crowd to breath a sigh in relief before releasing a rousing cheer in support of Jenkins.


“This is really bad.” Pete simply states. “Spike’s shown unbelievable determination thus far, but I just don’t know how much longer he can hold out. Magnifico’s simply driving his head into the canvas with whatever moves he knows at this point.”


“You say that like it’s a bad thing.” King counters. “This is the best part of the match. I’ll give you the over under at Spike’s neck breaking within two moves.”


ELM rolls off of Jenkins, grabs him by the arm, and stands up, scowling and cursing nonstop as he pulls Spike to his feet. Once Jenkins is standing, Magnifico grabs him by the leg and simply lifts him into the air, as if for a Scoop Slam! The fans now better, though, and begin to boo and shout in anticipation as ELM starts to twist Spike around for La Dia de los Muertos! However, as he twists, Jenkins reaches out with both arms, wrapping one around Magnifico’s head and the other behind his waist! Spike then pulls ELM down with all his might as he falls to the mat, rolling as he hits the canvas and pinning Magnifico to the mat with a Small Package! The surprised luchadore struggles wildly to escape as the ref slides to the mat and begins counting, his slaps of the mat completely drowned out by the excited roar of the crowd...















































THHHHHRRRRNNNOOOOOOO!! Magnifico breaks free at the very last moment! ELM rolls away from Spike and scrambles to his feet, doing so as Jenkins struggles to get to his. However, Jenkins isn’t quite as quick on the rise, reaching one knee when Magnifico is already on his feet. When Spike looks up, what he sees is ELM hopping into the air and kicking his feet out, aiming them right at Jenkins’ face! Spike doesn’t even have time to widen his eyes, as Magnifico slams his feet right into the bridge of Jenkins’ nose with a Standing Dropkick! A fresh wave of boos pours in from the capacity crowd as Spike snaps back to the canvas, his hands over his face.


“Magnifico tried to end the match right then and there with the Dia de los Muertos, but Spike managed to reverse it into a Small Package, nearly getting a surprise pinfall in the process!” Pete excitedly reports.


“And as his punishment, Spike immediately got blasted in the face the second Magnifico broke free of that ridiculous rollup.” King gruffly responds. “Jenkins is just being a sore loser at this point. ELM’s been in control virtually the entire time; it’d simply be unfair if Spike somehow managed to get a pinfall.”


“I don’t care how long Magnifico was ‘in control’, King.” Pete counters. “The winner is the guy who pins his opponent or gets him to give up. It’s as simple as that.”


Magnifico quickly gets back to his feet after landing the Dropkick, staring down coldly at Spike, whose hands still cover his face. After a moment, ELM suddenly heads over to the nearest corner and begins ascending its turnbuckles, the fans’ booing and taunting growing louder the higher he gets. When Magnifico reaches the top turnbuckle, he turns towards Spike and crouches, apparently waiting for Jenkins to get to his feet before doing whatever it is he plans on doing. Spike appears to be unaware of the luchadore’s presence above him, as he slowly climbs to his feet, not hearing the warnings shouted in from concerned members of the audience. Jenkins finally lunges to his feet, facing away from the luchadore, hardly able to keep his balance as he stands. When he doesn’t see Magnifico in front of him, Spike slowly, cautiously turns around...cueing ELM to leap off of the top turnbuckle and right at Jenkins! Thousands of flashbulbs illuminate the luchadore’s flight, bathing him in light as he wraps his legs around Spike’s head in mid-air, looking to land the Fall of the Aztecs! But the second Magnifico’s legs are around his head, Spike reaches out with his hands and locks them around ELM’s waist, trapping him upside down and against Jenkins’ body! Spike’s knocked back a couple steps by Magnifico’s momentum, but when he steadies himself, Jenkins steps over one of ELM’s arms, drawing a massive anticipatory pop from the capacity crowd! But before Spike can step over the other arm, Magnifico yanks the other one free and pulls back hard with his legs, tugging Jenkins down to the mat and then sitting on his shoulders with a Hurricanrana Pin! As Magnifico reaches back and hooks both Jenkins’ legs, the ref slides into position and begins counting, doing so as the distraught fans boo and shout as one...






THR-No! Spike breaks free of the pin right before the three count!


“No! No! Magnifico went for the Fall of the Aztecs, a move we haven’t seen in years only for Spike to catch him in mid-air and try for the Ratings Crash!” Pete enthusiastically announces.


“Only to fail once more, and in dramatic fashion.” King butts in. “Before Jenkins could even attempt to get off the Ratings Crash, Magnifico reverses it into a Hurricanrana Pin and comes THIS close to getting the pinfall.”


Magnifico rolls away from Jenkins and quickly gets back to his feet as Spike struggles to get to his only a yard away. ELM crouches over, breathing deeply, his hands on his knees, muttering something incoherent yet obviously angry as he waits for Spike to stand. A still-dazed Jenkins finally reaches his feet, meeting eyes with Magnifico...which cues the luchadore to suddenly sidestep towards him, thrusting his foot into the air and aiming it right at Spike’s chin with a Superkick! ELM’s foot is mere centimeters away from its target when Spike shoots his hands up and catches it, stopping the kick just before impact! As Magnifico hops on one foot, he angrily curses Spike out, drawing nothing more than a look of contempt from the weary Jenkins. Suddenly, Spike throws Magnifico’s foot to one side, spinning the luchadore around three hundred and sixty degrees on the mat! When ELM is facing Spike again, Jenkins throws his knee into the luchadore’s gut, doubling him over in the center of the ring! Moving quickly, Spike applies a Standing Head-Scissors, grabs him around the waist, and lifts him onto his shoulders! Jenkins steps back and lets ELM hang upside-down against his body, beginning the setup for his second attempt at the Ratings Crash!


“Here it is again! Spike has Magnifico in position for the Ratings Crash, and might be seconds away from winning this match and the World Title!” Pete excitedly reports, halfway between sitting and standing.


But once again, Magnifico manages to escape the finisher, as he uses his impressive leg strength to pull himself up onto Spike’s shoulders, breaking Jenkins’ hold around his waist as he does so! ELM lands a few obligatory wild punches to Spike’s head before spinning around on Jenkins’ shoulders so that he’s facing the same direction as him! Keeping his legs wrapped around Spike’s head, Magnifico bends down, grabs him behind the legs, and then rolls forward, rolling Jenkins up with him with a Victory Roll! The panicked fans have about their fifth heart attack of the night, looking on helplessly as the ref slides into position, beginning his count as Spike struggles wildly to escape!







































THRRRRRRNNNNNOOOOOO!! Spike breaks free of the pin with the ref’s hand only a few inches from the canvas! A mighty cheer rises from the live audience as Magnifico flops to the mat a few feet away from Spike, striking the canvas in frustration as he begins climbing to his feet.


“Once again, Spike tries to finish Magnifico off, only to have ELM reverse whatever Jenkins throws at him and nearly get a pinfall out of it.” King sums up. “Spike’s got to realize it’s impossible for him to win at this point. Everything he’s tried thus far has failed miserably.”


“And meanwhile, Magnifico’s been on the defensive, doing his best to just fight Spike off.” Pete sharply counters. “If ELM can’t put Jenkins away soon, Spike is bound to break through eventually and garner the pinfall he’s come so close to throughout this match.”


Both men begin to climb to their feet, moving at about the same clip and trying to shake off the respective pain and exhaustion they’ve accumulated throughout the match. Spike gets to his feet before Magnifico but tumbles backwards into the corner behind him as he stands, hardly able to keep on his own two feet. Jenkins coldly watches ELM as he reaches one knee and slowly looks up, locking eyes with Spike. A moment of silence passes and is broken up by Magnifico, who has begun to laugh softly in the middle of the ring. ELM slowly rises to his feet, clawing at his hair and chuckling uproariously as the annoyed crowd does their best to drown out his laughter with their boos. Spike seems to grow more furious the longer Magnifico laughs, building to the point where he suddenly bolts out of the corner, releasing a blood-curdling battle cry as the bears down on the luchadore! ELM’s laughter immediately subsides, but he’s still smiling as Spike approaches and lashes out with his arm, looking to land his signature Lariat! However, Magnifico manages to duck beneath the outstretched limb, causing Spike to skid to a halt after missing the move. Jenkins immediately spins around to face his opponent…and ELM responds by stepping forward, grabbing Spike by the leg and arm, and lifting him into the air as if for a Scoop Slam!


“Ha, and you were talking about Spike taking advantage of Magnifico’s anger.” King scoffs at a distraught LDP. “It’s ELM who goaded Jenkins into an enraged attack, and it’s ELM who’s going to take advantage and win this contest!”


As the alarmed crowd rises to their feet and begins to boo, Magnifico twists Jenkins’ body around, making his second attempt at the Dia de los Muertos…only to have it countered again as Spike wriggles out of ELM’s grasp, sliding down his back as the thankful crowd releases a massive cheer. As Spike slides, he reaches up and wraps his arm around Magnifico’s neck, locking in a Reverse Facelock as his feet hit the ground! The very moment he’s back on his feet, Spike throws his body violently to one side, twisting Magnifico with him as he lands on his stomach and drives the back of ELM’s skull into the canvas with the Clean Living! The pop that rises from the live audience is legendary in its magnitude, rocking the very foundations of the building as Spike flops onto his back beside Magnifico, his chest heaving as he lies motionless next to the luchadore. His rest only lasts a moment, however, as he smiles a tired smile, rolls to the side…and covers Magnifico! With fifty-five thousand overexcited fans counting along, the ref slides into position and begins to slap the mat…





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Magnifico gets his shoulder up as the ref ‘s hand is hitting the mat a third time! A jubilant Spike rolls off of ELM, convinced he’s won the match, only for the referee to tell him otherwise! Jenkins’ expression immediately sours as he spiritedly argues with the referee, insisting that there’s no way Magnifico could have kicked out just now! The ref refuses to change his decision, though, prompting Spike to curse loudly at slam the mat with both fists.


“Oh my God! Spike Jenkins hit the Clean Living, but Magnifico just barely managed to kick out!” Pete cries. “Jenkins was literally just hundredths of a second away from becoming World Champion!”


“Yeah, well, too bad for him.” King adds, unwilling to hide his obvious joy. “The more pressing concern for Spike is what he has to do to keep ELM down. He’s already had the ‘breakthrough’ you talked about earlier, Pete…so what does Jenkins have left?”


Spike remains on his hands and knees for a few moments, his long hair covering his hanging head. When Jenkins looks up, it’s an expression of complete and utter determination the fans see, which stays on his face as he slowly climbs to his feet. Once there, Spike reaches down and grabs Magnifico by the hair, pulling the limp luchadore off of the mat and to his feet. Before ELM can stand upright, however, Jenkins pulls him into a Standing Head-Scissors, drawing one more pop from the nearly-drained audience.


“The Ratings Crash, AGAIN?” King asks, disbelieving. “Please. He’s just asking for it to be countered.”


But instead of applying a Waistlock, Jenkins reaches down and hooks both of Magnifico’s arms! The crowd completely forgets their exhaustion and roars in excitement and anticipation as Spike looks out over them, holding ELM beneath him in position for his deadliest maneuver!


“What?! No!” King shouts, leaping out of his chair as he does so. “Don’t you DARE attempt that move, Spike! You hear me?! Don’t you fucking DARE!”


“King, calm down!” Pete snaps. “Spike has a once in a lifetime opportunity laying before him. This is his dream. He’s not going to let anything stop him from achieving it. If it means risking injury to Magnifico to become the World Champion…then so be it.”


The anticipation builds as Jenkins looks down on Magnifico, ready to end this once and for all. Spike takes a deep breath and lifts ELM into the air…only for Magnifico to flip right over Jenkins’ shoulder, landing on his feet back-to-back with Spike with his arms still hooked! The moment Magnifico hits the ground, he begins charging for the corner right in front of him, pulling the shocked Spike Jenkins along with him! ELM runs up the corner’s turnbuckles, jumps off of the top one, flips backwards over Spike’s head…and then lands on his knees, pulling Jenkins down with him and slamming his face into the canvas with the Baja California Crusher! The devastated fans can only look on as the kneeling luchadore hovers over Spike, doing his best to stay lucid for just a few more seconds. Magnifico reaches down, grabs Jenkins’ shoulder, turns him onto his stomach…and then simply falls forward to make the cover. Everyone fan in attendance inwardly prays and outwardly screams at Jenkins to kick out as the ref slides into position and begins counting…











































“Your winner by pinfall, and STILL, the World Heavyweight Champion…” Funyon dutifully announces, “EL LUCHADOOOOOOORRRREEEE MAGNIFICOOOOOOOOOOOO!!”


Atake FDD’s “Tu Final” hits the speakers once more, confirming the horrible reality the fans see before them. Shocked and dismayed, they simply stand in front of their seats and look on as the referee goes to fetch the World Title.


“Yeah! Hell yeah!” King jubilantly cries. “That’s exactly what you deserve, Spike! You got exactly what you deserved!”


“In an effort to ensure a pinfall, Spike went for the I Just Broke Your Neck…” a visibly disappointed Pete begins. “But Magnifico managed to reverse it and land the Baja California Crusher to get the pinfall. It was a terrific match that Spike was literally millimeters away from winning…but once again, ELM finds some way to pull out the victory.”


“Yeah, it’s called being better than the guy he’s facing.” King laughs. “Find another pretender to the throne, guys. Spike’s run at the title is thankfully over.”


The ref slides back into the ring, title in hand, just as Magnifico is beginning to stir. He turns onto his stomach, pushes himself to his hands and feet, and looks up to see the ref standing in front of him, offering him the World Title. ELM looks down for a moment, smirks, and slowly pushes himself to his feet, where he softly takes the title from the referee’s hands. As the ref grabs one of Magnifico’s arms and thrusts it high into the air, the luchadore simply looks down on Jenkins with that same insufferable, infuriating grin. After a moment, ELM snatches his hand free, hits the mat, and rolls to the outside, where the remaining fans in the front few rows boo and taunt him violently. Magnifico’s expression remains unchanged as he absorbs their insults and curses, knowing that whatever they may say about him is wrong. Once again, he’s proved them wrong. His grin widens as he reaches the entrance ramp and begins to climb up it, leaving everything behind as he does so.


Meanwhile, back in the ring, Spike turns onto his stomach and sees, though hazy vision, Magnifico making his way up the ramp.




He slowly claws his way towards the part of the ring closest to the ramp and reaches out his hand, as if he can simply will ELM getting back into the ring. The only thing he can think of is how very close he came to winning the match. To realizing his dream. To pinning Magnifico and becoming World Champion.













SWF Ashes 2 Ashes 2005 ©

A Riot Act Production


The SWF - Pimping the Panda since 2000

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