(CUE UP: “Moonscraper” by Teenage Strange. Homegrown Indianapolis stoner sludge this week, my dear fiends.)
(Speaking of Indianapolis, a panoramic skyline view of the city’s downtown neighborhood dominates the scene, with dark towers lighting up in electric light before a darkening evening sky. Dark clouds roll by... a bit too fast to be considered natural. As the camera slowly zooms out, perhaps we find out why... as the shot reveals to be an extreme close-up of a mirror-like lens to the aviators worn by REZIN.)
(We find professional wrestling’s self-proclaimed Sultan of Sludge slouching up against the wall outside of the historic Melody Inn Tavern. A show is happening outside with thick waves of doom metal pouring out the door, but the man is currently occupied with a bag of White Castle. An oddly proud smile is formed on the hash-smoking Hoosier native as he looks over the streets his state capital in between mouthfuls of the sliders being gorged into his face.)
Heh heh... welcome to NAP-TOWN, my little lambs!
(He hops up to his feet, clearing the crumbs of bread, cheese, and diced onion from the pelt-like mass of dark hair encircling his face. The empty grub bag gets crumpled up into a rudimentary ball before he tosses it quite nonchalantly over his shoulder, missing the wastebasket by a good foot.)
Home of the Indianapolis Five-Oh-Oh! Our beloved football team, the Indianapolis Peyton Mannings! And...
(His brow furrows and his hand circles around in limbo as he finds himself hard pressed to think of other things that might make the Circle City stand out from other major metropolitan areas.)
... a bunch of other cool stuff, I guess...
Okay, whatever... I guess it’s just another mere mote of concrete and glass in the middle of an ocean of corn. Nothing special, except for some stock-car race that appeals only to the redneck demographic that happens once a year.
But I can assure you of this, now that y’all are steppin’ into the deep, dark pit of mine...
(He turns back and picks up the big white bucket that’s been sitting up by the wall, unnoticed until now. A garish grin forms on the Goat Bastard’s face as he holds it up for the camera to see the black mass of waste and misery brewing inside.)
There is PLENTY more than corn in Indiana! There’s plenty of sludge to go around, too!
(With a dry chuckle, he looks into the bucket for a moment and sets it back down before turning to the camera with his penchant shit-eating grin.)
Heh heh... forgive me if I'm causing any bad memories to resurface, Malc. Is it a little too soon since you bathed in the black back at Aggression 73?
Tell us... have you washed out the SMELL yet?
Might want to hold off, because I wouldn’t be surprised if that stench hung around a while longer...
But what can I say, dude? You forced me into a desperate situation. The First was about to eat the pin, and I was facing the possibility of listening to you beat your chest for the rest of the year bragging about how you stepped-up and defeated the World Champion and there was nothing I could do to prevent it. So, I acted... rashly, perhaps, but also accordingly... because if I’m going to lose to a bullshit reason like that, then the least I can do is tarnish your victory.
You believe winning is everything... but as long as I’m around to kill your chances at winning anything, then all you really have is NOTHING. Nothing but a big, fat, empty notion...
(Rezin releases a sloppy and slobbering scoff in clear dismissal for the very philosophy.)
What IS “Greatness”, Malc? Is it losing a tag team cage match and blaming your partner? Or how about steamrolling a man with absolutely ZERO fight left in him? Are these signs of the “greatness” you speak of? Because to me, it sounds like a man trying to coast by on technicalities. I suppose that would be something you’d have in common with fellow champions Boogie Smallz and The First.
But hey, now that I think about it, just what the hell makes anyone think that you are in any place to define what “greatness” truly is? Fudge to the judge, I say! I’ve been wrestling for fifteen goldamb years, and regardless of whatever people think I did or did not want enough of through those years, it hasn’t change the fact that I can STILL kick your ugly head off.
Just visualize it: Heel to the back of the head, and shit fills the seat of your nifty purple singlet, and you’re seeing nothing but BLACK before your mongoloid face bounces lifelessly off the canvas. I don’t need “greatness” to make it a reality, champ. All I need is the perfect opportunity to make the fatal strike, and watching you churn and froth in a rage over your inability to break me is giving me more chances than I need.
I gotta hand it to you, though... thanks to all your empty talk about “greatness” and “winning is everything”, you’ve given me a whole new inspiration to keep on spreading around my endless cloud of death, destruction, and misery. For months, I’ve watched you build this hollow monument to your ego on a flimsy platform of meager accomplishments... and you’ve set yourself up perfectly to have that monument toppled by the one man in this sport whose only desire is to watch things fall into ruin.
(He turns to the wastebasket where he earlier tossed trash and missed, and to add to his act of littering by kicking it over and dumping more strewn heaps of paper, plastic, and styrofoam across the pavement. Depreciating the beauty of his beloved hometown, apparently, is his way of showing it’s still home.)
The rest of the world is always so focused on what they can gain for themselves. Well... I’m interested in seeing what happens to them when they lose something and can never have it back.
Everybody is so quick to congratulate you on winning the Television Title, and making your high-and-mighty claims to return it to its former glory... but all it means to me is that you’re the next man in line to LOSE that belt. So many years, I’ve sat back disinterested... but now, I see an opportunity to be a part of something great.
I can be the man to strip that title off of you. I can kick you back into the gutter you crawled out of, your hopes and dreams absolutely shattered. I can be the man that made you disappear from the sport of wrestling. Who knows... years from now, everybody could be saying, “Em-Jay-WHO??”
Your demise could be my own milestone in “greatness”... and realizing that is more important than any title I could win, or any lock of hair I could shear off of a scalp, for that matter. And what better place to realize it, than right here in the crusty core of this hick-filled heartland? This miserable little circle of asphalt and blood, Indianapolis... the place where a high-flying maniac like myself proudly calls his mutha-fuggin’ home.
So enjoy these last precious seconds of your fleeting fifteen minutes of fame, Malc... because I’m about to pull the plug on the legacy of the Television Championship for good once I’ve left you broken and suffering and covered in filth yet again.
(With another sinister chuckle, Rezin turns from the camera and steps through the door to enter the bar. Our scene fades to black.)
(FADE TO: Malcolm Joseph-Jones, on a bench in a locker room. Royal purple towel around his waist and EPW Television Title over his shoulder, complete with his trend-setting browline glasses and his absurd, MLB-would-come-questioning, mountain-muscled physique that is accentuated by his glistening shirtlessness. He rubs his face, goatee and nose, looking off to the side as he speaks.)
MJ2: "That sludge-bath you gave me is all over my mind, Rezin. It got in my nostrils, it got through my goggles and snuck into my eyes - it sunk deep. I couldn't help but drink it all in, soakin' in the filth and that godawful stench. It's not somethin you forget easily.
Three showers and a spa treatment, and I swear I can still smell that shit. My head knows it's gone - but man oh man can the mind play tricks on ya.
Almost made me hurl when I went to go down on this chicken-headed girl last Tuesday.
Just bein' real."
(MJ2 looks at the camera, winks, and grins.)
MJ2: "But that's the point, ain't it Rezin? Cause that lingering stench, cause that disgusting memory for as long as you can by any means necessary because that's the only way you can make ANYONE remember you these days.
You talk a nice little talk about keepin' me from winnin' anything so long as you're around...forget about this?"
(MJ2 pats his title belt.)
MJ2: "Sure was a shame what happened to your old butt-buddy. But oh, forgive me, it's all 'poor poor Anarky, the man who lost his smile', am I right? You're right when you say I steamrolled the man when he had no fight left - because that's what you DO in this world when a pathetic cretin steps up to you like a chicken dinner and says 'devour me'. You DEVOUR that man, and you thank him for the calories after he rolls over and dies.
And then you pick the bones clean. That's where you come in.
It seems that no matter where I go, you and I seem to find each other, don't we Rezin? King of the Cage, which was basically a glorified handicap match. Last Aggression, where you did what you do best - be the most vile and disgusting pile of manure in all of EPW rather than do what it takes to actually WIN. You're so dead-set on making these self-centered delusional 'points' about how amazing you 'are', but at the end of the day? That card is gonna read 'MJ2 and Impulse def. Rezin and The First'.
Because that's what HAPPENED.
The more the scent of your chum-bucket lingers, the more and more it dawns on me that you, Rezin, are the epitome of that bucket. You're a bubbling, vile, disgusting mass of shit that maybe ONCE was worth something in its damn life, but due to time or neglect or hate or waste or some combination of all that, you're nothing more than expunged bowel that doesn't win anything.
And YOU'RE going to dethrone me as EPW television champion? Give me a break.
My tower is built out of ego. And that ego is built on a foundation of truth, because I am the most dynamic and powerful physical specimen EPW has ever seen. Greatness in the eyes others will soon have no CHOICE but to catch up with the greatness I see in my own eyes.
And I will RUIN your precious little homecoming...by any. means. NECESSARY."
(Our shot opens on REZIN situated before a backdrop that represents an alteration of the state flag of Indiana, only the torch in the middle appears depicted as a burning spliff and the stars circling it are inverted and stenciled in a way to appear as pentagrams, all done on a scheme of pitch black and bone gray as opposed to the customary navy and gold. The Goat Bastard himself stands before us in a rare appearance where he’s actually hiding his grisly and hair-patched upper torso with the new Coffinworm t-shirt.)
Slow your role there, Malc...
Keep preachin’ on about “greatness” if you must... but the topic of RUIN is my business! I've got it down to an artform!
You’d do well to remember that, if you just took a moment to reflect on the ruin I've brought to your life ever since the day you came to this Empire. Such as when I ruined your hopes of making a name for yourself in the King of the Cage tournament, or when I ruined your ambitions of stealing the glory back in Oklahama City by washing you in waste!
But until now, all that was nothing... just little things I put in place for the sake of annoying you, and setting your mind into a state of unrest. The real ruin that awaits you is what’s coming at Aggression Seven-Four, when I lay to waste the would-be restoration of the Television Title’s legacy by ending your paltry reign.
And I hate to be the one to break it to ya, buddy... but the more you go on to deny the possibility that something like that can even happen, the more you make it a certainty.
(The wry smile of a devil forms on his face, as if he had some dark, secret knowledge of the universe known only to himself.)
I’d elaborate on that to give you more of an idea on just how that’s going to be the case... but really, why bother? What's the point in telling you ANYTHING, Malc? You’re just going to disregard it all as bullshit anyway, for no other legitimate reason other than it came from my mouth.
All because of why, exactly? Because I never felt the need to wrangle a title around my waist? Is that really what it all comes down to? Do you really think having the ability to stand there, puff out your chest, and tap that precious title resting on your shoulder means everything you say is nothing short of the truth?
More importantly, is it really necessary for us to jump back into this same old song and dance? Because honestly, I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve tried explaining to you and all the other sheep out there the real reason behind a ten-year long career void of any noteworthy accomplishments. And yet, every explanation gets written off as an excuse.
(He shakes his head with disappointment for his fellow member of the human race.)
So allow me to explain something else to you, Malc, now that you’re faced with the very real possibility of eating the canvas in your first ever title defense...
You should know well by now that I’m a veteran to Empire Pro... and in that time, I can attest that I’ve seen many athletes come and go, and I’ve seen many belts change hands between them. Now, I may have never touched any of those belts myself, but there was a lot there for me to learn, simply by watching one star rise and fall after the next.
And after all those years, this is the one thing I can say when it comes to the subject of holding onto gold: Simply having the belt does NOT make you a champion. That’s merely the prerequisite. To be REAL champion, Malc, it’s all about who you fight for that belt... how you fight for it... and how hard you bust your ass to hang onto it.
So many of those athletes I’ve encountered in my career could never seem to grasp this, and unsurprisingly, a lot of them couldn’t make the cut. Now you are in danger of repeating their mistakes, all because you’re too fucking proud to listen to a bit of insight from a guy like me.
Being the Television Champion of Empire Pro doesn’t make you the paragon of truth, Malc. You’re just another rube with a belt and an unvalidated sense of worth.
You steamrolled over ‘Nark, and you think you’ve proven yourself. But honestly, that could have happened to anybody in that position. Aaron fucking Jones could have walked into the ring in the Television Title match back at Unleashed, and HE would be the champ right now. And if that were the case, then everybody would be seeing him the same way I’m right now seeing you: Dead fucking meat... a stupid little lamb on the conveyor belt, riding forward completely oblivious to your own grisly end.
And I’m the butcher on the other side of the curtain, bloody cleaver in one hand and blackened bong in the other.
But hey, like I said... what’s the point in telling all of this to you? You’ve already got everything figured out, or so you seem to think. So by all means, continue to ignore the threats... keep telling yourself that I'm just some weak and inconsequential jackoff that couldn't win anything even if I tried... keep thinking there’s no possible way you’re leaving Nap Town without that title.
Honestly, Malc, I want you to believe that bullshit. I want you to walk into that ring completely blind and vulnerable, beneath a paper-thin pall of misperceptions, because it will be that much more rewarding after I’ve kicked your face in and turned your whole fucking world upside down. We’ll see how easy it is for you to go on spouting about your thrice-dambed “greatness” when the rest of the world can only see you as the man who had his fame taken from him by the black-stained fingers of REZIN.
And let’s be clear... the only reason why I have any interest in putting that Television Title around my waist would be just to prove to dense fuckers like you that I’ve always had the ability to take it. But it’s not the core of what I’m fighting for, Malc... and neither is the chance to attain “greatness”.
I’m not motivated by gold or glory... only CHAOS and DOOM. The chance to watch the people I hate fall into suffering and decay is all the motivation I’ll ever need.
The longer you see that as an excuse, the longer you deny the face of reality. And I’m real, Malc... I’m a lot more real than the muthafuggers you’ve been stomping on to get this far. Perhaps that reality needs to be thrown in your face, once more...
(He reaches down out of the frame and pulls up the notorious bucket of sludge that has been making regular appearances lately. He gets down on his knees and gazes into it like a warlock hovering over a cauldron, faint admiration glinting in his maddened eyes.)
Ruin is my art, Malcolm. The ring is my canvas. And I only need two colors to complete my masterpiece...
(He dips his fingers in and smiles as he watches the dark muck drip off his skin in thick, polypous clumps.)
(His eyes find the camera again, as the most damning of evil grins forms on his face.)
“Allow me to educate you, you ignorant little homunculus.”
(FADE TO: Malcolm Joseph-Jones standing before an EPW backdrop. The bowling balls resting upon his shoulders strain the threads of the XXXL electric purple button-up shirt he wears with bright yellow suspenders; sleeves rolled up, top button unbuttoned. The browline glasses. The trim Van Dyke-style goatee. The EPW Television Title over his left shoulder.)
MJ2: “It’s not a shock of all shocks to me when I hear you say you hate my guts. You hate what I stand for, you hate the fact that I am, so far, the physical embodiment of all the ‘might makes right’ elitism that a right goat bastard like yourself has fought against for-fucking-ever.
Ma and pa and the good sweet Lord blessed me with the genetics of a comic book, what can I say?
But if you’re looking for some sort of grand epiphany of my heinous wrongdoings, or some sort of sincere, come-to-Jesus apology for the way I live my life, Rezin, you’re knockin’ on the wroooong door. For all your talk about how EPW doesn’t understand you or I could’ve taken it whenever I wanted, I just didn’t want it, you just don’t get it, you sure as shit don’t have a firm grasp on the ol’ Em Jay Two.
You’re the sludge bucket calling the kettle a [CENSORED].
You choose to see me as this big ol’ pile of meat. A million dollar body with a fitty-cent head whose ego is the result of a life of constantly havin’ my junk stroked, either by myself or by the world. Like I’m this big ol’ jackass caveman who don’t know how the world works, but YOU, the ever-seeing Rezin, the everlasting veteran who sees all and knows all, YOU will educate me with a kick and a bucket of your leavings.
I know how the world works, Rezin. And THAT is why I am the way I am.
In this world, Rezin, you can trust one person and one person only: yourself. No one is going to stand up for you at the expense of themselves. No one is going to hold you up and lift you on their shoulders forever, and anyone who says they are is either delusional or selling something. Growin’ up, being beat down the system, having opportunity after opportunity in my life as a young man stripped from me out of someone else’s damn self-interest, it’s a lesson you learn REAL quick. Hell, you should know all about this, Mr. Bottom of the Barrel, Mr. Anarky Let Me Down, Mr. The World Is Garbage So I’ma Smoke It All.
So? I am my only advocate. I am firmly aware of how many people in this world will go out of their way to cut me down the second it benefits them - it’s happened enough times from enough places, after all. The choices that lay before me? Curl up and hope the world doesn’t rape me too badly so I can go off and live a quiet little life in some fuckin’ ghetto in Mississippi…or…become the goddamn predator myself.
And so I will take, and take, and take, Rezin. And I will always take. I will bolster my own sense of self-worth and entitlement every damn day of the week for the rest of my life, because I know that I am all I’ve got…and I’ve got the physical tools to do, really, anything I damn well please.
Impulse felt it when The First made me that offer to take him out for a shot at the title. And it’s why, when The First made that offer like some sort of welfare handout, I had a better idea - take it myself.
He has the igno-balls to say that he can make me famous?? Bitch, I make myself famous. Every. Damn. Day.
And I would’ve had it, too…you bet your ass when someone pins the champion, Dan Ryan gives him a shot. And then, like you do with your entire life, you make a decision that ruins it. The self-professed Master of Ruin.
Sure - you’ve been involved with a couple moments now that pissed me off. In yet another moment of a donkey calling a gorilla a jackass, you say my demolishing of Anarky was nothin’, that Aaron Jones could’ve pinned him - and you brag that ‘you’ ruined my King of the Cage run…when Anarky pinned Aaron Jones. All you did in that tournament was ruin your team and set into motion the events that sent a rotted two-by-four into a wood chipper.
And, again, the bucket at last Aggression. Well, the way I see it? I still owe you for that one.
So…BECAUSE I’m the physical freak I am? BECAUSE I can take and devour the locker room and everything in its path, BECAUSE I know it’s me against the entire world and BECAUSE how much of a monster that makes me?
I’ll snap you like a twig, and I’ll toss the scraps in the wood chipper.
(CUE UP: “Blackest of Times” by Apostle of Solitude, keeping to the Naptown Sludge Metal trend.)
(Our scene opens up at the famous Broad Ripple neighborhood situated in Indy. We get a montage of famous venues -- the Vogue theater, the original Hot Box Pizza, Landshark’s Night Club, Indy CD & Vinyl, Boogie Burger, Broad Ripple Massage Practice... and at the end of it all, we find ourselves right outside the Magic Bus, the local headshop. Right away, we’re greeted by one of their best customers. REZIN leans against the glass in his usual attire, the words “EM - JAY - WHO?” scrawled in the black tar across his chest. At his side, as usual, is the bucket of sludge.)
Ugh, Malc... why’s it always gotta come down to this?
You and I have this habit of always falling into the same argument about ideals, motivations, and philosophies, but really... what’s the fucking point?
What does any of it prove? Why are we so much more interested in proving we’re “right” than simply explaining how we can be better? We can keep justifying who we are, and admonishing each other for this reason or that, but it won’t make a lick of difference once the bell rings.
In that ring, it’s not going to be you against the world. It’s just going to be you against me.
And in that ring, you’re gonna find out that your view of the world ain’t got shit on what the ol’ Goat Bastard can show ya...
(He chuckles, dry and ominous.)
You might have the size and strength to back up your words, big man, but you’re only damning yourself if you think it’s going to be as easy as snapping a twig in half. Replace the stick with a rattlesnake, and you’ll get something closer to the situation you’re now dealing with.
Make no mistake about it... you will get bit.
But it’s not the bite you should be worried most about. It’s the POISON, Malc. It hurts you where it hurts the most...
(Taps his temple.)
It’s not enough for me to try and break you apart piece by piece on a physical scale, Malc. Your mind is what I want. I want the wake of your failure to completely incapacitate you... leaving you in the one place you dread the most.
And how will I do that? By taking your one and only claim to fame... the Television Championship of Empire Pro.
Perhaps you’ll recall earlier in the week when I mused what it would be like when the people who have everything lose something that they can’t ever get back. All your talk about how take things got me to thinking... what would happen when somebody took something from you?
Would you try to take it back? Or would you give up, run away, and cry like all the rest?
Because I want you to think long and hard about all those names previously etched on that belt, Malc. A lot of those poor bastards aren’t around anymore... and you can bet your ass that in more than one instance, I had something to do with it.
Most athletes pride themselves on titles. I pride myself on my bodycount, Malc.
And I’ve got your number, you Bug-Eyed, Bull-Headed Lyin’ Purple People Eatin’ sonovabish. You’re speed and size will only slow you down when I run circles around your head and come at you from every angle. And your one-dimensional desire to be as big and bad as you can be is simply futile when my very nature is to sabotage everything you’re building. You can’t break me... because that “real world” you speak of did it long before you had the chance... and bucko, I’m still standin’. Simply put, champ, I got you fuckin’ beat... and if what you’ve had to say this week means anything to me, it’s only that you deserve to have your hopes and dreams smashed.
But rest assured... you’ll take something from this match. Maybe a lesson... maybe a scar, or a burning memory...
Or maybe you’ll take nothing, Malcolm... because right when you thought you had it all, the bell rang, and you suddenly realized I had taken it from you long ago.
(He chuckles again, but it gives away to coughing as the shot goes to black.)
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