“I don’t even know why we’re wrestling again, Erik … Rezin … or whoever you are this week.”
FADEIN: The King’s lair. Seated on a diamond encrusted throne, feet propped up on the back of an exotic model, kneeled down on all fours, fanning the crack of his ass, with a large green leaf, sat EPW superstar “Triple X” Sean Stevens in all of his royal splendor.
TRIPLE X: I mean … I’m not even mad about the outcome of the last match? Did we win? No. But, that comes with the territory, especially when you’re involved in gigantic cluster fucks like what we participated in. You, Anarky, Burns?” Stevens mildly applauded. “You get to pound your respective chests, because you’re now in an elite fraternity of individuals that actually get to say that your hand was raised in a match involving myself. Me? I’ll just go on my merry little way, not giving a shit, knowing full well that this match meant nothing more to me than another opportunity to rid myself of a little ring rust, before I make my push to recapture the belt that I never lost – my EPW World Heavyweight Championship.”
His crown rested atop his head, slightly tilted to the side, in that annoying way that Ice Tre used to wear his faux crown four years ago. The champ – yeah, I said it – was dressed in all white – linen – and proudly flashed his solid gold $50,000 Rolex every few seconds or so, just to remind you how much richer than you he was.
TRIPLE X: With how everything turned out, one would think that everybody won last week. …or so I thought— wait, stop the recording.”
Static. Snow. FADE. Black.
“Travis, this doesn’t feel right.” Travis Taylor was the producer that produces all of Sean’s epic, not so epic, mediocre, and terrible promos. …those descriptions are depending on who you ask.
“What do you mean, champ?” Yes, Travis went there. And, yes … the majority of Stevens’ entourage still, in fact, refers to him as ‘champ’.
“I mean, I don’t want to step on any toes or anything, and I love the work that you and your crew do to make me look like a million bucks, but here’s the thing … I’m a good guy now. Promos on thrones, feet propped up on women, degrading them doesn’t really line up with what I stand for these days.”
“We understand, Sean … but, we always viewed you as that one superstar that superseded the normal laws of right and wrong, good versus evil. The audience will see this and love you anyway, and to boot, you get to keep the Triple X swagger. No one wants to see a syrupy sweet, watered down Triple X.”
Stevens took those last comments in, thinking it through before he spoke. “I have a son, man. Not a baby, not a toddler, but a child that understands what he sees when he sees me on television. That’s more important to me than being viewed as The Fonz. And, if we can’t come to some form of an understanding, I’m going to have to look elsewhere for help.”
Producers chatter in the background, that – at this point – sounded more like the Charlie Brown “Womp Womp” to an annoyed Sean “Triple X” Stevens. But, I assure you, their actual response was something along the lines of “You’re right, bad idea. Let’s go change things up, a bit.”
FADEIN: Stevens in a leather jacket, on a stool, in front of a plain white backdrop.
TRIPLE X: So I guess we now have a grudge match on our hands, Dopesmoker. Now, I have to figure out why, because I certainly didn’t ask, expect, or want this. Let’s not mince words, and spare feelings … You’ve never been on my level, nor will you ever be. You can go through all the transformations, all the metamorphosis, and make all of the necessary changes to your mental psyche and it still won’t change one very important thing. At my core, despite the neatly trimmed hair, expensive sunglasses, hoopla, and entertainment … I am a fighter. I don’t quit, I don’t back down, I don’t make excuses, and I very seldom lose. At your core, is a marginally skilled wrestler with an identity crisis, walking around not quite sure who he really is.
“Rezin … I see what you’re doing. I know where you’re going with this. You beat me, it turns all of the circus into something a little more official. You beat me, you’re no longer a joke, you no longer have to explain yourself to the people that don’t believe in you, or your lifestyle changes, you become real. If you hurt me? You get my spot.
“But, you’re doing neither. I’m going to treat you like I treated each and every single one of my matches during that legendary two year run. Will it be as smooth, and effortless? No. I’ve been away for awhile, and I’m two years older. But, what you can’t replace, or take away is this, Rezin.”
Stevens pointed to his heart.
TRIPLE X: That same heart that helped me last forty-five minutes with Marcus Westcott, on a day when he was the better man, and find a way to win. That same heart that lifted me off the ground against Rocko Daymon and JA when they both had real life personal issues with me, and should’ve ended my career. That same heart that saw me take on The First time after time, when I no longer had nothing to prove, simply because I love the challenge. That same heart that saw me walk into Russian Roulette against two first ballot Hall of Famers – Lindsay Troy, and Joey Melton – as an underdog, look those two sons-of-bitches in the eye, tell them “fuck your soap opera” before I defeated them both to win my first EPW World Heavyweight Championship.
“Trust me when I tell you, Rezin … you can make this about fairy tales, make believe beefs, and silly hair removal situations, but the reality of the situation is, you don’t want the kinds of problems I can bring. I can ruin you day, week, month, and year if you make me angry enough. I can end your career like I did Joey’s, Rocko’s, Lindsay Troy, JA, the greatest performer of all time Hornet, and Eli Flair’s if you interest me enough.
“So go ahead … respond. Be funny. Witty. Angry. Just be careful. Because the balls in your court, son. And, if I don’t like what you have to say … at Aggression … I’ll put you in time out.”
(The shot opens up on the side of a stretch of highway cutting through America’s Midwest. After a few vehicles pass by, a truck slows down and pulls over to stop. The passenger side door pops open and longtime EPW reporter Kenny Lombaro drops out of the truck cab, nearly dropping face-first into the dirt. More than likely it’s his first time hitching a ride out into the middle of nowhere. He turns around to thank the driver before closing the door, and the truck pulls away.)
(Kenny now finds himself alone on the side of a highway with a mic in his hand, looking around for somebody. He finally spots that person not far up ahead on the road, uncharacteristically clad in a long black coat worn on a hot and annoyingly sunny day. Swallowing any reservations lingering on his mind, the reporter approaches the dark-minded madman and master of chaos... the one known now only as REZIN.)
Hey, Rezin... man, you have NO idea how hard it was to find you this time. I swear, it’s like you do this to me on purpose...
(Rezin doesn’t immediately respond. His head is hanging low, and he’s looking at something on the ground in front of him.)
Is there anything in this world more depressing?
(Kenny follows his gaze and wrinkles his nose at what he sees. The smell probably hits him at the sight of it. The camera drops, and at Rezin’s feet is the rotting carcass of what could have been a possum or a raccoon. Whatever it was, its life was clearly claimed by the nearby road.)
I’ve spent a good half of my life travelling roads across this planet, Kenny... and no matter how many times I see it and expect it, it still brings me to my knees.
Tell me, Kenny... how do you think it happened? Do you think it was instantaneous? Like, BAM... lights out? Or do you think he suffered? Do you think he lied there for a few minutes in agonizing pain as one set of wheels after the next crushed his bones and splayed his entrails across the pavement? Do you think he had any idea of what was happening?
(Lombardo considers these thoughts and finds them rather unsettling.)
You know, Rezin... to be honest, those are some things I’ve never once considered in my life.
Of COURSE you don’t. To everybody else that drives by on this trail of death and destruction, it’s just another dead rodent. But it’s so much more than that. It’s a SACRIFICE, Kenny. It’s another innocent casualty of mankind’s progress. Would anybody slow down or stop to allow a living being to cross the road? Fuck no... people got places to be and tedious, unimportant shit to do.
Don’t you see, Kenny? For every one of us to enjoy all the great shit we have in life... our food, our clothes, our iPads... something in this world has to pay the price with its life. In order to create... one must destroy.
...are you high right now?
(Rezin glares at the reporter.)
How can you even ASK THAT?!
(An awkward pause follows, until Rezin raises the one-hitter in his hand and takes a puff off the black hash packing deep into it. The answer, clearly, is obvious, and has always been obvious. Direspectfully, Rezin blows the blue smog into Kenny’s face, who is simply repulsed.)
...give me your jacket.
What? My jacket?! No way!
...Kenny, am I REALLY going to have to kick you in the face right now? You got a whole closet full of those cheap blazers... now hand it over, or get ready to kiss my heel.
Jeez... oh well, I guess it’s kinda hot out anyway...
(With Rezin’s determined look of aggression bearing down on him, Kenny quickly strips off the blazer portion of his tacky reporter’s leisure suit. The Escape Artist of professional wrestling promptly yanks it out of his hand and looks back down at the dead animal. He squats down and covers its remains using the coat as a funeral shroud.)
Sorry about your luck, amigo. Wish I could do more, but... all I can do is promise that you’ll be remembered.
(Rezin rises up again and Kenny looks flabbergasted, which is usually how he looks when he’s around this guy anyway.)
You forced me to give up my coat just so you could cover some dead animal on the highway?
(Rezin smacks him across the shoulder again.)
Show some RESPECT, you bleating fool! If you’re going to be on the side of life, then you’d do well to honor ALL life, elephant to fucking ant!
Well what’s wrong with YOUR coat?
(The Sultan of Sludge lets out a scoff as he flairs up the frayed collar of his duster. It’s probably ninety degrees outside, and Kenny is noticeably doused in sweat, but the heat doesn’t seem to bother Rezin.)
If you think I’d give this up, then YOU must be high, K-Lo.
Now follow me... there’s a place I want to take you.
(Rezin turns and begins walking... across the highway. A Buick gives him the horn as it speeds by, but he pays it no attention, heedlessly advancing in a single direction without any mind for the traffic that miraculously misses him. Kenny looks completely dumbstruck at this act of blatant disregard for one’s self. Then he looks miserable, realizing he was just asked to follow.)
Oh my God... this is crazy...
(With much reluctance, Kenny does so, awkwardly and apologetically scampering by and halting abruptly at every lane. Horns blare and lights flash and a Mack truck nearly puts him right alongside the roadkill left behind on the roadside, but he eventually makes it to the other side of the highway.)
Oh THANK YOU... THANK YOU, GOD!
(Rezin is now making his way toward a truck stop by the nearby off-ramp, taking a direct route through a field of wild grass. The reporter hurries to catch up, still out of breath after his mad dash across the highway. Before he reaches him, he glances up to see a large green sign. It reads: LEBANON, IN - 1 MILE.)
So, Rezin... I figure you’d be in the mountains of Colorado by now, but instead I find you only a couple hours down the road from Chicago, the site of Aggression 66.
Not every day the circus rolls by the ol’ shithole I grew up in. Figured I’d pay a visit.
What are your thoughts on what happened at the show? Do you think you’re a step closer to fulfilling your evil plan of destroying the company?
It’s not a “plan”, Kenny... and I have no idea where you and the other sheep out there ever got the idea that it was.
Well... didn’t you plainly state months ago, soon after your transformation from Dopesmoker, that you’re going to destroy Empire Pro?
Clearly, you’ve never been introduced to the concept of subtext. No wonder you lost your job to some hooker named “Lesbian”...
Destruction isn’t a goal. It’s an inner compulsion. I’m a ruiner, Kenny. I’m the kind of person that doesn’t have a lot of good things going for me... but I see other people with good things going for them, and deep down, it PISSES ME OFF to see them that way! So I sweep in, and spoil the moment! I HUMBLE them...
Right... well, some would certainly question if you truly spoiled the moment for the Tag Team Champions, the Animezing Dragons, and their partner, the former World Heavyweight Champion and Empire Pro Hall of Famer, “Triple X” Sean Stevens. Though your team with Anarky and Eddie Burns did manage to eke out a victory in the match’s climactic pandemonium, your opponents certainly stood their ground in the aftermath. Some would say that perhaps YOU were humbled that night.
Dang... did we really win that match?
You mean you don’t remember?
Well cut me some slack, bro... I did take two superkicks and a set of brass knucks in the face, so my memory’s still a little groggy.
Not that it matters anyway. We won because guys like Anarky and myself tend to win in situations where shit is hitting the fan and the referee can’t tell his elbow from his asshole when it comes to getting things back into order. That’s what you get when you dabble in tag team matches... and perhaps that’s why an Escape Artist like ME is a tag team LEGEND here in Empire Pro.
Lately, though... I’ve been feeling the urge to step away from all the tag teaming for a change. It’s time to get back to basics... one on one.
I assume, then, that is why you’ve laid down the challenge at Aggression 67 to the one man in this federation who could very well be your true exact opposite... the Yin to your Yang... the legendary Hall of Famer and former World Heavyweight Champion, “Triple X” Sean Stevens.
Is he still really “Triple X” these days? I kinda figured with the whole family guy thing he’s doing now, he’d be rated closer to “PG”.
But anyway... I felt I didn’t get enough face time with Sean at the last show, so yeah, I made this challenge. Not because it’s anything personal between us... but our great and honored KING here at Empire Pro kept on hammering this point about how I’ve never been anybody important and I never will be. Funny thing is... I’ve never said anything on the contrary.
(The wild roadside grass becomes asphalt as Rezin leads the reporter into a parking lot, through an array of stationary diesel trucks lined up outside of a roadside dive down the ways from a gas station.)
Did I ask where we’re going?
I dunno... probably not, since I would’ve kicked you in the damb face if you did. Doesn’t matter anyway, because we’re almost there...
(Rather than going inside, Rezin leads Kenny around to the back side of the building. There’s a dumpster and a small employee parking lot... but otherwise, nothing spectacular. At least the front of the building had neon bar lights in the windows. Rezin comes to a stop and stands in silence for a moment.)
...is this the place?
This is it, Kenny.
...where the hell ARE we, Rezin?
Come now, Kenny... there’s HISTORY right where we’re standing.
It was in this very place, twenty-eight years ago... where on a hot August night, a simple hometown waitress at this mid-American bar laid in passion with an unknown man in the back seat of an Eighty-Two Buick Regal. It was here, Kenny... where the GOAT BASTARD was conceived.
You’re looking at the low beginnings of a low man. I wasn’t born a KING. KINGS aren’t born in places like this. I was born a BASTARD, to a drunk, pilled-out bitch looking for a squeeze from some swarthy nobody passing through this insignificant little highway roadstop, in the agrarian butthole of ‘Merica.
Well, uh... that’s, uh... creepy?
I was never meant for great things, Kenny. All you have to do is look at my humble beginnings to understand that. And yet, I’ve risen over expectations... become a regularly appearing star in a major professional wrestling promotion... scoured the entire globe. I’ve done more than the average man will do in a lifetime, and all before the age of thirty. And yet in spite of it all, all I can ever claim to be is an insignificant curtain-jerker... a pedestal for the true stars and champions of this sport.
I’ll the be the first guy to admit that I am a mere cockroach in professional wrestling. But cockroaches last for a long time and can survive through damn well anything. No King’s castle is without its vermin scratching through the walls.
And that’s what I am, Kenny... VERMIN. A damnable plague-bringer. Sean Stevens, the KING, needs to learn that no matter how many times he superkicks me in the face, I’m NEVER going to leave. Ice Tre ain’t got SHIT on me.
At Aggression 57, the King will have to rise off his throne and come out to the battlefield... where King and peasant alike stand on the same ground. If the stars are aligned, I’ll pull out a heroic feat like no other... striking the King’s perfectly chiseled face with these blackened hands. Seriously... that’s like beating Diablo on Inferno difficulty.
Oh, so THAT’S where you’ve been all week...
(Rezin flips into rage mode and grabs Kenny by the collar of his shirt, pulling him up inches from his face.)
OF COURSE THAT’S WHERE I’VE BEEN ALL WEEK, YOU DUMBASS!! TRAINING FOR A WRESTLING MATCH?! IT’S DIABLO FUCKIN’ THREE!! I’M SUPPOSED TO GET MY MONK TO LEVEL 40 BY THE END OF THE WEEKEND!!
Check my LASHING TAIL KICK, bee-otch!
(Rezin shoves him a distance away and gives Kenny a good, hard DAMASCUS HEEL to the face that sends the reporter crashing against the dumpster and lying unconscious on the pavement. The goat bastard LAUGHS MANIACALLY as the camera fades to black.)
FADEIN: EPW backdrop. No fancy lighting, frills, or extra nonsense. Triple X, standing, in a “Planet Earth’s Champion” t-shirt, hair pulled back into a pony-tail, and a five o’clock shadow.
Hell … for the fuck of it, let’s just call it one of those old school promo’s where there’s already a match taking place, and a second little box pops up in the corner, mid match. Best of both worlds … a match, a promo. Pure unadulterated genius.
Thank Me Later.
TRIPLE X: People make the mistake of thinking that just because I did horrible things during my last run, that that was who I was. It wasn’t. The craziest people don’t necessarily know that they’re crazy until someone tells them, because they don’t really know what they’re doing. If you called me cerebral … manipulative … premeditative … I’d agree with you wholeheartedly, because every dastardly deed that I committed, I was fully aware of what I was doing, and what the repercussions would be. Thing is, unlike most quote-unquote ‘bad guys’ I didn’t mind them, because I put in the work in the gym, didn’t shortcut my way to success, and actually looked forward to the moment where the person that I did wrong finally stepped up to face me in the ring.
“I loved that shit, Rezin. I lived for it.
“I had the front office, the audience, the boys – including you – all in the palm of my hand. YOU yourself admired me. You admired the pretty boy image. You admired what you thought my life was, and tried to recreate it for yourself, and pretend that it was your idea. I relished in the fact that as I stood in the center of the ring, with the entire world watching, and you guys lined up around a monitor in the back, hoping, waiting, praying that I got my comeuppance for tossing a man out of a three story window, after I fucked his wife in their hotel room. Or because I retired the beloved Queen of the Ring, and her legend boyfriend Melton. Or because I didn’t use my position to elevate guys like The First even more than I already had, and lay down so he could have his magical title win. Or because I didn’t give a flying motherfuck when guys like Layne Winters got butt hurt over it.
“It thrilled me that you guys were in the back, all rooting against me, all hoping that the reign would end, all saying the exact same thing that the individual in that ring said before they got their shot; ‘Sean’s not that good. Sean holds people back. Just wait until I get my turn, I’m going to destroy him’ … but, ultimately, at the end of the day, it always ended up being the same.
“Rezin you’ve been in this business for a while now, and I’m not going to sit here and pretend that you’re not great at what you do. The only problem is, I’m back now. And, this new territory that you’re trying to conquer is myterritory. See? While you were wrestling in those much needed, fast paced, crowd pleasing tag matches in the midcard, that redefined what tag team wrestling should be, I was doing the exact same thing in the main event. I was tearing down the house in those same buildings as you, only difference? When I got tired, or I had the wind knocked out of me, or a move didn’t go according to plan, and I tweaked an ankle, or broke my thumb, I didn’t have someone to lean on until I got myself together.
“And, that’s the difference between you and me. I’ve been here before … you haven’t. You think you have a general idea what it takes to rise up in the ranks, and destroy this company from within … I know I have what it takes to stop you. So don’t go into this match thinking that because I’ve taken a milder approach that I won’t snap your neck if you make me angry enough, because truth be told … I wasn’t even a bad guy back then. I did what I needed to do to accomplish my goals, and if I need to do the same thing again, trust and believe that I will.
“I’ll just make sure Ivy doesn’t let our son watch television that day.”
FWrestling.com was founded in 1994 to promote a community of fantasy wrestling fans and leagues. Since then, we've hosted dozens of leagues and special events, and thousands of users. Come join and prove you're "Even Better Than The Real Thing."
Add Your League
If you want to help grow the community of fantasy wrestling creators, consider hosting your league here on FW. You gain access to message boards, Discord, your own web space and the ability to post pages here on FW. To discuss, message "Chad" here on FW Central.