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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)


Premier Wrestling Circuit (PWC)
...Presents...




Arena: AT&T Stadium
Capacity: 100,000
City: Dallas, Texas

***


Singles Match
Jensen vs Donald Hammerpunch



Triple-Threat Ladder Match for the TV Title
Lucas Hawthorne vs Austin Angel vs Daiko (c)



Singles Match
Ace Fox vs El Gigante Enmascarado



Singles Match
Kidd West vs Sway Archer




Singles Match for the Legacy Championship
Annalise vs Jacob Bianchi (c)



Triple-Threat Match for the PWC Championship
Shadow vs Dr Nero vs King Crowley (c)



Card is subject to change.



****

Deadline for all RPs is 11:59 GMT on 10th April 2018 (Tuesday)


For each day of extension granted, the show will be extended for the same duration.



GFX Credit: CHAMPviaDQ



As always, feel free to leave your predictions in the thread. If an RP extension is needed, please let us know ASAP. No more than 24 hours will be granted
.



 

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Bring back Gary Oak!
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Singles Match
Jensen vs Donald Hammerpunch​


Consistency is key here and I think Jensen has more about him. This is going to be a tamer match in comparison to some of the others on the card, but these two are still dangerous competitors and both will have to be on their game if they want to come out of this with a win.


Triple-Threat Match for the TV Title
Lucas Hawthorne vs Austin Angel vs Daiko (c)
Daiko had Austin dead to rights in the last show and if it wasn't for the timely intervention of Axl, I think that would have been a simple finish. Unfortunately Angel's companions remain ever present and Lucas Hawthorne had to intervene to even out the numbers a little. While Angel has the numbers advantage, Daiko has shown that he's more than capable of matching Austin. The wild card here is Lucas, but he has had trouble with Austin in the past. Daiko to win, but this won't be a clean match.


Singles Match
Ace Fox vs El Gigante Enmascarado

Gigante has been struggling horribly with his time in the PWC, and I don't expect this match to be any different. Ace will be looking to use a match on this stage as a launching point for the rest of his PWC Career.


Singles Match
Kidd West vs Sway Archer

I honestly don't know. These two are almost equally talented and it's difficult to pick just an actual winner. I think this has a chance to be the match that surprises everyone.


Singles Match for the Legacy Championship
Annalise vs Jacob Bianchi (c)



Annalise has been dominant so far. She became the #1 Contender in her first match and she continued this streak with her second. Her biggest issue is that she's no longer facing someone that she can intimidate. Bianchi has been keeping his cards close to his chest here, but if the last few months have taught us anything, he's not waiting idle. He'll be trying to unscramble the mystery that is Annalise's past, hunting for something or someone to use against her.

Don't count Annalise out of this, but don't overlook Bianchi. This one should be special.


Triple-Threat Match for the PWC Championship
Shadow vs Dr Nero vs King Crowley (c)
Almost a year in the making and it's finally here.

Shadow has been doggedly chasing the Champion around, trying to cause damage at every opportunity, but no matter what he does he just can't seem to keep the King down.

Dr. Nero has made regaining the World Heavyweight Championship his lives work ever since he returned to the PWC. He had a momentary slip against Jacob Bianchi, but this has just served to sharpen the Doctor's wits and leave him even more prepared than ever. Crowley may have taken Nero's title many moons ago, but he might be stepping into the ring with a whole new monster come Last Rites.

King Crowley has more than earned the title of King at this point. He took Nero to the extreme and won, he took Shadow to the Darkness and won. He may have the support of his Ghouls, but Crowley has shown that he doesn't need them to win. He's fast, he's dangerous and he'll be ready for the biggest challenge of his career.

My money is on Nero here. Crowley has beaten both men in the past, but he's facing them both at the same time. I wouldn't be surprised if Nero and Shadow worked together at points to dole out maximum damage to the Italian, looking to keep the bulk of the match between the two of them.

 

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Failure.



It is the one word that embodies the PWC career of Ace Fox. Sure, he may be living his dream of being a wrestler, but, as seen last week, when it comes to the big time, he simply can't handle the pressure. He buckles under that same pressure, the pressure of a seven-foot masked giant, who in turn is buckling under the pressure of low self-esteem. And Ace is where he seeks help. Seeing an another man crumble as a result of his terror on that very man, it brings back confidence into his emotionally unstable soul. But in reality, Gigante knows he unleashes his fury upon others, so that he doesn't feel alone in his crippling misery. He constantly feels the need to spread it out like a virus on everybody around him. But what Gigante doesn't realize, is that after all Ace has went through, because of all the battles he's had with it himself, because of all the tears shed, and because of all the sleepless nights, he is immune to that shit.



Ace knows how it feels to struggle, to scratch and claw, to feel like this is your time, to be an inch away from the mountain top, before life drags you right back down to the ground. And that, is why Gigante has no chance against Ace. Ace knows what Gigante is suffering from, and he knows just the right spots to attack in order to intensify the pain. He isn't going to be looking to chop down the big tree, or focusing on a body part and weakening it to submission. Because no matter how much he acts like he doesn't, even El Gigante Enmascarado has a heart. And it's his easily breakable heart, which will end up being his biggest demise.



Just like any other ordinary human, psychologically, Gigante is fragile. One bad day, one set-back, one disappointment, and he's burning up like a campfire. Ace on the other hand, is the polar opposite. Yes, he did fail, he did lose in the battle royal. Despite the fact he was there every week tearing it up in the gym and in ring, and doing his best to improve his emotional state, it still wasn't enough. A lot of people would quit, they would say they're not meant for the ring, that they just lack the ability. Immature people would throw a fit, just like Gigante did because his gigantic ego couldn't take too kindly to losing to little Ace Fox. And Ace understands that. He can empathize with it all. He is like an old man watching teenagers make the same mistakes he once made. No matter the size, the strength or the in-ring prowess, nobody can match Ace as far as keeping your emotions in check go. Before, he used to get excited when he came sprinting down the aisle, happy to see his fans supporting him.



Now however, he has seen the truth. Those people sitting in the audience, they won't bring him victory. Focusing on them simply distracts him from the real task at hand, his opponent. He must be cool, calm and calculated from now on. It's not anymore about being joyful for doing what you dreamed to do. He mustn't be known as the guy who dreamed to be in the ring, because then people will just take advantage. He must be known as the guy who other people dreamed about being in the ring with. Ace Fox must be merciless, and his surname needs to represent his personality - cunning.



Because working hard will not get you anywhere in this world. Fighting fairly and with passion won't make you succesful, doing everything you can and taking chance of every opportunity will. And doing everything, doesn't mean fighting the good fight, it means doing anything that will get you ahead, and putting morality in second place. El Gigante Enmascarado, he showed Ace that even his only escape from the cruelty of everyday life, is just as blackhearted. But in doing so, he turned this from a sporting contest which Ace would have been happy with winning, to a war, where only Gigante's blood will be enough to satisfy the Miamian Killer.



At Last Rites, El Gigante Enmascarado shall burn for his sins, and Ace Fox, shall cement his legacy as the most ruthless rookie Last Rites has ever seen.



The Morning Of Last Rites



Today is the big day. Everything seems to be going perfect for Ace, as he wakes up in Fred Connors' house, on Fred Connors' cozy bed, and no Fred Connors to berate him. Ever since Ace cut his forehead open and knocked him out with a glass bottle, Fred has been in a coma, and Ace, has never been more awoken. It's almost like getting rid of lung cancer, because now he can breath freely again. Ace has used this time to prepare. Prepare for tonight, the biggest night of his life. Premier Wrestling Circuit's biggest show of the year, Last Rites. He even has an interview scheduled for later tonight on national TV. Yet he's not excited, he's just focused. Focused on beating up El Gigante Enmascarado, concentrated on beating his opponent and making a name for himself. And in order to accomplish that, he mustn't let himself become overwrought. He must be stone cold.



Then, in a snap of a finger, all that soul training winds up in dust, as he starts hearing grunting from the living room, and is immediatelly shaken up.
It must be one of his employees, he thinks to himself, sweating bullets in the process. But then, Ace truly shows that he is a brand new human being. He remembers all the work he put into recovering and trying not to be emotional, his sweaty palms dry out, as he nonchalantly opens his door, ready to take on the world.



And just for a split second, Ace sees a man sitting in a chair, trapped by none other than Fred Connors, gun in hand. With zero hesitation in his heart, Fred pulls the trigger, and everything goes black. It was just a dream, and Ace is soon woken up by the horror of it. He jumps out of the bed, like a child on a Christmas morning, rushing down a flight of stairs. Quickly, the desk is reached, but it is failed to be unlocked. The hot-headed youth knows no boundaries, as he rips the wooden lock off. Rushing through the mess, he finally at last finds what he was searching for. It's the notebook in which his grandma wrote poets about his dad. An old picture of him can be found on page one. Upon seeing the dusted photo, Ace instantly lets out a cry, and his face is very soon covered in tears.



It was his father. It was Arnold Fox, who Ace saw in his dream. HE stares at the door of the living room. The memory of him refusing to kill his greatest blood rival, of him not being strong enough to end the blood feud, comes back into his head. He should have pulled the trigger. But now, he has no doubt.



Fred Connors needs to be dealt with. Permanently.​
 

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¡Hala Madrid ⛧ Tricampeones!
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He swung open the door. “After you.” They entered the foyer and Teatro di San Carlo was beginning to feel like a strange from the past. The dim lighting, the lumpy, red brocade seats, the crumbling stucco and shadowy lilac curtain all seemed very familiar now. The orchestra ceased warming up and the audience hushed, the anticipation tangible. Ghostly. Two blue lights shone down, revealing the stark simplicity of the central stage. Then, piece by piece, an intricate scene appeared.


****


Act one


First, bare trees seem to gather along a purple horizon. Attentive and still. Their envy turning from green to black as they witness the sun’s slow surrender to the night’s dark seduction. Then, to the left of the stage a tree-covered hillside, and to the right a steep cliff face. Finally, when a starlit night with moving clouds completed the panorama, two kids walked out onto the stage and began to interact. Their happy sadness echoed. Their play is inseparable and their games can only continue so long as they exist. Small hands holding tight to strings of laughter.

The tableau was complete, a gloomy, deep landscape that spanned the full height and width of the stage. The audience was moved, transported by their pure innocence. Then, in the blink of an eye that white and holy innocence was washed with scarlet stained with ebony and swiftly destroyed.

Soon only the slight tap, tap of a percussion instrument could be heard. Heartbeat. A beast would travel across the entire scene in an intoxicating display of carnage. The percussion stopped and the tap, tap softened to the sound of rain falling. They fell, hitting the ground, tearing the skin, ripping the flesh. Tears.

Several in the audience gasped, the rest seemed to be holding their breath.

Horrible screams. The monster dropping his latest victim and turning to look at him in slow motion. He always turned in slow motion, his teeth still black from his victim’s blood. A dark shadow looming over him. Maniacal laughter. The oldest kid couldn’t breathe. His throat closed, his lungs sized. He began to choke.“I am here with you. Do not panic.”The voice came out of nowhere, was simple there in his mind. Calm, steady. When there was nothing left, when there was no sanity left, when his mind parted in two there was always that voice.

An immense shadow loomed behind him, and raised its shadow clads above the kid’s head. And the hooded figure leaned closer and closer, whispering.


“Come with me.”


**

Somber walls spanned the width of the stage. Walls of silence of guarded weariness. Walls of hesitation, of distrust and grotesque images. A room where the pale of death surrounds. It is behind these walls that truth undresses and then lies. Then to the left, there she is, so angelic, so young and fragile. She sat in the amber glow of the night light with her cascading delicate blonde hair disheveled her blue eyes distant gaze out the window to the fierce winter night.

The audience was silent and attentive. Entering the stage from the left came a caped hooded figure. It moved rhythmically in the dim light, swaying slightly back and forth. But it lingered like a malevolent shadow just over her shoulder, waiting, watching and whispering. Vile words, vile injuries. A tear dwells in the daughter’s eyes. The figure disappeared from sight. She longed to give chase, but stood frozen to the floor.


“Father.”


***


Act two



On the stage a bright, full moon created a wondrous scene exquisitely serene. Then to the right a white church stands out among the sleeping village on a hill, under a starry sky. A marvelous landscape painting enrolled itself.

The cold sized their bodies forcing them to glue together under the blanket of stars. The warmth soothed the air but they held the cold captive as a cover, to cherish the glow that bubbled them from the city lights and the flourishing leaves. Up in the air the conversation flew.


“So,” he said and strummed the guitar. “It seems to be in tune. "What do you want to hear?” He asked and pulled the pick out of his pocket.

“Um, anything.” He smiled and played. He sang alone with the music while she swayed in her chair with her eyes closed. When the song was over she clapped. Her eyes met his, and a faint smile crossed her lips. He laughed and looked down at the guitar.

She turned and moved across the stage. Her facial expressions and bearing emanated surprise.


“Oh, that laugh. Deep from your core uncontrollable outburst. Fill up the corners of the room. The way you lose yourself in the joy. The sound of happiness, shuffles its way through me. My lips turn up with a grin. What is this stifling emotion? Its weight on my lungs, I fight and lose. Bubbling up my throat. A sound very familiar. A forgotten ability. What are you doing to me? Pulling my smile out from under the rubble. It’s like I’ve forgotten how to feel, and I’m coming to life again.”

He traced her footsteps until he stood a few feet from her.

“Who hurt you so bad?

So bad that tears weren’t enough that only a dagger could make you human again.”

The audience waited, breathless with anticipation for the revelation.

“A hollow man, a father with a set of theatrical masks that project grotesque shadows upon the world. A monster of evil, a creature, yes a creature. Whose moral viciousness is vividly stamped on his twisted body who believes he has been cruelly cheated by dissembling nature. Yet has with skill a fathomless malice fashioned.”

The lights dimmed again and the curtains opened, this time to a tall, narrow, gloomy room and a ceiling of arched stone overhead. The musicians began to play the overture that introduced Katherine. The wings on her back grew into a long, white, gown that enveloped her body. Stage lighting flattered her perfect features. Her thick, golden hair gleamed, and each of her moves seemed light and graceful. And she began to sing a strange, sad song in a minor key.

Her heart sank in despair. She grasped for air as the emotions brewed and erupted into notes of anguish. Her body folded as her knees crashed to the ground. A pang struck her stomach,
“Oh, Virgin Mother! It doesn’t hurt.”

Katherine dress soon took on a tainted crimson color that started below her abdominal. The darkness descended, veiling her eyes as she embraced the ground. When she finished the audience rose and clapped loudly. The clapping stopped, replaced by deathly silence. Amid the profound silence Stephen crossed the room and kneeled down next to her. The sadness was quickly squashed when a hooded figure stepped inside. It was the shadow of darkness, the devil incarnate. He couldn’t see a face under the hood of his cloak. But he knew who he was.


***


Act three


The curtains parted. Then, the scenery was changed quickly to indicate a forest, surrounded by a dense fog and reddish hue. Flashing blades rip through the air. Ravens fly and wild wolves howl. On the left, dozens of combatant entered the stage disheveled, their clothing spotted with blood. To the right, blasting forth with rage in his eyes, a King made his way through blades and spears, with the sword he had forged and the great army he had assembled. Stories were told from shore to shore about crimes and atrocities, and the heroic feats he had committed.

The battle had been waged.

To her he was a hero.

To them he was a villain

To some he was a king


"Two warriors ran, like wolves up the slopes with weapons so fearsome and sharp in their hands. A bloodshed like no one saw before. Arrows with fire flew through the air. The revenge they sought was taken in blood. They came for the King for my crown. They slew men ruthlessly but still lost. However, their story will be told and live forever. Two warriors who fought relentlessly against the King."

The sword was still in his hand. For a moment he knelt there, watching the defeat of his two mighty enemies.

“Heroic in dignity and passion. Poise and posture. A mask on his face he was hiding. He could see them all but he could only see his fall. He drops the mask and cast a glance at his back. Hoping to see what he lacks. He wanted to fly so he could touch the glory. His name was Shadow.”

“He was diligent and precise. Cutting flesh to invisible templates with a surgeon’s precision, as mortal as any. He never erred and he never missed. Never once pause to vacillate because he wasn’t just a man. He was a god, a king. Pride personified. Nero.”

“Amidst thorns and angry boughs. Encountering, oh, so many dangers nowhere may I walk. Without a vicious hand drawing up sword, burning steel. Another life I must fight. For I cannot lie down and die.”

The clean rain was soaking his torn clothes and black hair. Slowly he lifted his head, wiped the water from his face, as the audience gasped in awe. As if from nowhere, dark and grim he appeared and loomed behind the King.

“Four years has gone by now my sworn enemy; it’s your turn to die!”

His sword cut through his foe who stumbles to the ground. Down to sleep in a pool of blood.

“I see without fear my destiny as the raging skies begin to fade pouring rain licking my wounds as my blood flows from my torn flesh. As I walk I hold my sword. My only friend. Beyond empty lands, prairie grass whispers Last Rites. Ghost from my past greet me. Death is drawing near. I know it’s true but I have no fear I know I cannot escape my fate."

He approach the gates his heart is cold. He knows it too well, she awaits him.

His legs sized up, lost power and collapsed to the floor.

He was the villain the world needed. The villain the world always had. He was a villain without destiny. A man without morals, a vigilante to some, and a criminal to others. He was the hero no one wanted. Yet, he was the angel the murkiest kingdom prayed for.

***


When he finished, everyone in the audience rose and clapped loudly and stamped their feet. And when the curtain closed the delighted audience demanded a dozen curtain calls. The curtain rose again, the actors stepped forward and bowed. The applause kept coming, so the cast took another step forward and bowed again. The actress stood accepting several bouquets of flowers. She walked back and forth on the stage apron, waving to the audience.

The main actor left the stage, quietly. But with a last theatrical bow his crowd applauded in admiration. And then there was silence. He had been colossal. A god among his peers creating magnificent poetry to hidden desires. He entered the stage, victorious. He had been great but he had to leave. His words still echo at the theatre.

The show must go on.

The sun was warm on our shoulders, the breeze cooled the back of our necks. Kids poured onto the playground, screeching and laughing. Lilith sat down gravely by my side, and we spent a pleasant hour together that morning before parting to my match at Last Rites against Nero and Shadow.

She had heard each word, and had felt the silence between each sentence.

“Did you liked it the story of the King?”

“It is my favorite theatre play of all, except for it’s sad ending. How I wish it had a happier ending. Does your story has a happy ending, Daddy?” She asked.

Crowley’s expressive eyes clouded for a moment with the painful memory and he sighed deeply.

“Of course.” She giggled.

“That King was a lonely man who never had a princess as beautiful as you. Even if I had to lose my crown one day it won't matter because I would still have you.”


****


“You are the hero and so the villain, the main character, the one trying to hold the story together in your shaky hands. Because you are the story yourself, you are my story. You are the protagonist, yet you are also the antagonist. I know you will overcome your enemies in the end, even if that enemy is yourself.”
 

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Last Rites II

1 Hour Before Last Rites.

It was time. Shadow sat in his locker room, soaking in the moment.

This time he was going to do it, he was finally going to achieve the big one and overcome all the odds.

This was for the fans, for the people, for the locker room who Crowley has alienated himself from. This was for Tony and all the athlete’s he’d rubbed shoulders with along this way. This was for Steve, but was it for Kyle?

Shadow’s mind still contained much uncertainty on events from the past few months but what was absolutely certain was his goal tonight. Enter the ring, take on the top 2 superstars in the PWC and win the top prize in this business.

We now notice that Shadow is holding something in his hands, it appears to be an item of clothing. The room is so dim as the challenger for PWC’s biggest prize sits in absolute silence taking time to reflect on absolutely everything that’s happened to him since joining PWC.

Eventually it becomes clear that the item in Shadow’s hand is his mask. Still blood stained and damaged from his first ever PPV encounter.

That was at Last Rites last year where he and Crowley faced off one and one in what was dubbed “Battle for the Darkness”.

That night Shadow wasn’t victorious but in the eyes of many fans this was the event that proved he was a true fighter with more heart than maybe anyone else on the PWC roster.

This was also the final time Shadow would wear his mask. Regularly he can be caught almost meditating before PWC shows and uses the Mask as a symbol of sorts. The mask represents his past along with the trials and tribulations he went through to reach this point.
___________________

1 day after Road to Last Rites…

Kyle had just been discharged from the hospital and was resting up at home. Still Shadow was ignoring calls, deleting unread texts and staying out of town to avoid Kyle at all costs. Dr Jones had advised him to take baby steps with his road to mental recovery. He had to overcome one obstacle at a time and he had last been advised to avoid Kyle at all costs given the complications in their relationship over the past 10 or so years along with the possible revelation of Kyle having a hand in his father’s passing.

But Matty needed to know.

Not only that - He was going to find out and there wasn’t a damn thing anybody could do to stop it, not even ‘Arthur Jones PhD’.


He caught a cab across town, he had been staying at a hotel on the outskirts knowing full well Kyle would find him at home. Before going to Kyle’s apartment to confront him Shadow stopped by home to pick up some final things he needed - One of which being his old mask.

The cab pulls up outside Matty’s home and he is greeted by a truly haunting image. His front door is swung wide open despite him having not been home properly in around a month.

Trying to keep his composure, he asks the taxi driver to wait as he goes inside for a couple minutes.

He walks slowly down the path and almost creeps through the doorway in anticipation - he doesn’t know what he is anticipating but he does not feel alone. He creeps his way by the kitchen and is horrified to look in and see it has been ransacked. The room looks totally turned upside down as Matty then storms through the rest of the house to find each and every room contains the same horror.

Someone had broken into his home and evidently not taken anything but had made his house quite literally a mess.

He begins to realise that though someone has obviously been here, no one is there right now and so giving it no second thought he storms out of the building almost ripping the door through the framework he shuts it so hard. He has the bag he went in for over his shoulder as he clambers back into the taxi and glares back at his home with a blank look across his face.​

Change of plan - Take me to 104 Acacia Drive.

The Taxi driver nods as the car begins to move...​


______________

30 minutes before Last Rites…

Still, Shadow sits in that same spot staring down at his mask.

Slowly he stretches his right leg out and scoops a small metal trash can across the floor and to his feet. It scrapes across the floor causing a sound absolutely piercing against the eardrums.

He stares down a little longer before allowing the mask to drop down into the bin. As it does we see a box of matches that were sat in Shadow’s hands all along.

Steadily Shadow slides the box open, he carefully removes one of the matches before slipping it back shut again.

His eyes are still transfixed on the mask below as he brings the match against the side of the box and strikes it alight.

For the first time his eyes shift from the mask and now to the bright flame beneath him. He pauses for a long time as if unsure what to do next but he drops the flame into the bin as it begins to melt away the designs and the material of the mask becomes visibly crisp. Shadow stares down as he is seemingly burning away all his past - Perhaps he is letting it all go?

_____________________________

1 Day after Road to Last Rites…




Dr Jones is sat as is desk ask a visibly distraught Matty enters his office.​

So Matthew, what brings you here today? Our next appointment isn’t for about a week.

Matty is pacing back and forth in Dr Jones’ office still visibly shaken after the revelation he made back at home.
I just went home and found my front door wide open and my house completely doubled over.

That sounds like an issue for the police, not myself.

You don’t understand.
This was Kyle.


How can you be sure of that? He’s in the hospital?

No he was discharged just today. He’s been calling and texting me none stop but just like you said I’ve avoided him at all costs.


But we also agreed you would stay away from home because if Kyle wanted to come and speak to you that would be where he would look.

The pacing stops and Matty looks down at Arthur. His expressions tells all.​

You were going to find him weren’t you? You tried your house first in hope he wasn’t going to wait.

Not exactly, I know he’s at his own apartment I’ve been told but I was going to go over there after collecting my mask.

What mask? Do you wear one when you compete?

I used to, I keep it as kind of motivation.

Let me see it?


He has a quick rummage through his bag before passing the mask over to the doctor. He almost grimaces at the accessory seeing the stains of blood and tears which ruin it completely. He stretches his arm out and gestures for Matty to take a seat.​

Look I don’t know what kinda stuff Kyle is mixed up in but if this is his way of dragging me into it then I’m just skipping town. I’m a traveling performer so I don’t need to stick around.


The doctor just ignores him while continuing to examine the mask.
Look doc, you’re trying to help and so far you’ve been great and all but staying out of town
means not coming back here so thanks for the treatment so far but I’m going to have to-


Not so fast, young man. After all we’ve discussed about the way to move on is to let go of and move past the old, why would you keep such a memento?

That mask was a part of my growing up in the industry, it’s part of who I am, doc.

If it’s part of who you are then why do you not still wear it?

It helps me prepare.

How so?

Confused by the rapid questions Shadow composes himself a moment before responding.
I sit and think before all my matches, as I do so i look at and hold the mask as a reminder of all I had to go through to reach where I am today. It’s special to me.

And has this method won you the PWC Championship which you crave so much?

Matty stares across the desk at the Doctor who all the while is still just looking the Mask up and down and has not once laid eyes on his patient.​

Why are you asking me that?

Finally Dr Jones drops his hands to the desk and places the mask down before Matty as he looks him dead in the eyes.​

I want you to get rid of this mask. In whichever way you see fit but ensure it is a way which means you will never see it again.

His jaw drops. There is a man asking him to blatantly destroy a huge part of who he is.​

You see this item as a reminder of your hardships, of the way you have overcome so much - but all it really is, is a reminder of your failures, all the times you have come so close but just not close enough. It reminds you of the horrendous years you spent alienated from your peers as you had to scratch and claw to get just half of what those around you were being gifted. But now you’re at the summit, young Matthew. You have scratched and you have clawed and you are oh so close but in order to drag yourself to the top, you need to get rid of some dead weight.

The room falls to absolute silence as Matty takes the mask and looks down at it still gawping at the thought of it being gone forever.
I know this means a lot to you, which is why it must be done. That is a symbol not only of your success, but of your failure. And truth be told you’ve had much more success since not wearing it than you did whilst wearing it, am I correct?

Yeah… You are.

I’m a firm believer in cutting out all negativity Matty, that’s is why i ask you to do these things, it is for your betterment. Now quickly back onto your situation today: You are clearly shaken up and right now we do not have confirmation on is Kyle had anything to do with today but nor are we going to find out. I told you baby steps and that is what we will take.

The next step from here is your mask problem and then onto your date in Dallas… Next week, I believe?


His face still screams out “Shock” but he nods in agreement with the psychiatrist.​

Brilliant! Now I am not much of a sports fan at all but I do hope you come back with a title belt to brag about on our next meeting. That was meant to be in 5 days of course but due to this impromptu visit shall we say a week to the day?

That’s fine doc, see you there.

Matty looks horrified as he places the mask back in the bag and makes his way out of the room. He must throw away so much history. He must cut away his past He must burn away his demons.​

___________________________

10 minutes before Last Rites

Shadow stares down at the bucket beneath him as smoke continues to fly out from it. When we look down it contains nothing but a drying pool of molten plastic and the ash from burnt fabric.

Slowly Shadow raises his head and glares straight forward.​

Crowley, we’ve been down this road together before. We’ve fought this war and we danced this dance. We’re all too familiar with one another but that is the beauty of tonight, for I am a changed man. A year ago you faced a much weaker man who donned a mask to hide his face. Since then on numerous occasions you face that same man but stronger, mask-less and unleashed. At first this change was enough to defeat you but since then you have had the better of our exchanges. But tonight you do not face a man. You face an entirely new beast who is more free than ever before and ready to walk down that ramp and rip your cold black heart out and hold it up to the world as the oh so mighty “King” kneels at my feet. I am oh so familiar with you but you are by no stretch of the imagination familiar with the monster that you will face tonight.

And Dr Nero. I’ve had quite a lot to do with doctors lately so I’d like to think I’m comfortable in how to handle you. I have to utmost respect for you and all that you have achieved in that ring. But tonight you are not stepping into a ring. Tonight you step onto the battlefield of a war that has been raging on since the very same night you lost the PWC Championship. You’re probably thinking about how fitting this is and how everything is going to come “full circle” as you regain that prize at the very same even it was taken from you. I am sorry but that is not the case for fairy tales do not exist. But horror stories do. Myself and the champion have been brutalising one another for as long as I can remember and I know that the one and only thing we are in agreement on is that we will not let you sneak in and try and capitalise on our hatred for one another.

Below me you will see a pit of what was fire laid out in this trash can. This pit reminds me very much of you both tonight. Your fires did burn, and they did burn bright! So much so that you both believe this is your night! But fires dim, flames die down. Eventually there is nothing left because just like tonight:

Darkness. Will Fall.

Cut to black.
 

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Registered
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6,146 Posts
Hi guys, I only just saw this... I really apologise!

My Grandfather passed away 2 weeks ago and I've been offline for a while... Can I get an extension and I promise I'll get something done in maybe 24 hours...
 

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Bring back Gary Oak!
Joined
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4,684 Posts
Hi guys, I only just saw this... I really apologise!

My Grandfather passed away 2 weeks ago and I've been offline for a while... Can I get an extension and I promise I'll get something done in maybe 24 hours...
Sorry to hear that, man. Hope you're doing well.

Yeah, of course. Since it took me so long to reply feel free to take the 24 hours starting from today.
 

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Exploring Planet Alpha
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284 Posts
Stories From The Road: An Austin Angel RP

The Day Before Last Rites: AT & T Stadium, Dallas, Texas.

I was sitting in the empty stadium, 24 hours away from some would say is the biggest match of my career, but to me it was a disappointment. One year ago I had what, at the time, I considered the biggest match of my year at the first Last Rites....the inaugural match for the very same Television Championship. Hell I even had to deal with that piece of shit former partner of mine Daiko trying to steal my glory again. The only thing that's changed in a year is I've held championship gold, there's no tables, ladders and chairs this time, and Bruce Thorn is long gone, replaced by the Austin Angel wanna be, Lucas Hawthorne. The thought had crossed my mind recently to leave PWC, take my talents elsewhere and use another company to expand the Austin Angel brand, but would I really do it? I wasn't sure. Clearly not much had changed in a year, my career wasn't progressing the way I'd like it to and I refuse to tread water for another year and end up in another triple threat for the TV Title next year. With a mind heavy with thoughts, I sat in the cheap seats up top of the stadium looking down at the ring, when out of the corner of my eye I saw someone sit down next to me. To no surprise, it was Becca. I didn't tell her where I was going but she knew me better than I knew myself sometimes, she probably knew I'd go here before I knew it.

I thought I might find you here when you said you were going for a walk to think.

I pulled down the hood on my hoodie and offered a half smile to her, she saw the look on my face, and a look of concern crossed hers as she looked at me.

What's on your mind? You're not normally this quiet.

I sighed as I continued to look straight ahead.

What am I doing wrong? Last year I was in the same damn spot at Last Rites, I busted my ass and damn near killed myself trying to win that damn TLC match, and sure some said I stole the show with my performance, but i lost. Because going out of your way to entertain the fans gets you nowhere, but I stopped caring what they think months ago and I'm in the same damn spot.

I looked over at Becca, who was sitting quiet, listening to what I was saying.

I don't regret a damn thing I've done over the last year, but I'm not going to stick around here and never get to that next level, I know I'm good enough, I know I can win world titles and be the face of a company, but I just haven't reached that level. And just as I thought I was on the path to doing that, dominating as TV Champion, preparing to finish off Lucas Hawthorne for good, Daiko of all people comes back to ruin that.

I shook my head in annoyance.

I don't know Bec, I think tomorrow might be the last time people see Austin Angel for awhile if I lose again.

I took a deep breath, and slowly exhaled it as Becca nodded along with what I was saying. She waited a moment to see if I was finished, when I didn't say anything she finally spoke up.

You aren't doing anything wrong, in fact even though your placement on the card is the same, I'd say this past year was the best of your career. You're win-loss record ever since turning your back on the fans speaks for itself, you made two successful defenses of the TV Title, made Jensen into the most irrelevant person in the entire company which likely made Clement regret giving him that movie contract, and if it wasn't for a stupid mystery opponent last week, you would be sitting here right now with the TV Title on that seat next to you. You are a great wrestler Austin, and an even better man, you shouldn't doubt yourself. But if you aren't happy in PWC, there's no reason you have to stay. After all you could get a contract with any wrestling company in the world.

I nodded in understanding.

I know I'm a great wrestler, and you're right any company would be lucky to have me. I love wrestling, and I truly missed it when I retired the first time, but you know the injuries pile up, the travel wears you down, and lately I've been feeling like maybe I wanna move on.

Well there's always the option of getting more involved with music, or you could get into acting. After all, you already have the movie star good looks.

She grinned at me, and I couldn't help but crack a smile and let out a chuckle. When she's right, she's right.

Babe, at the end of the day the decision is yours, you know I'll support you whatever you wanna do and I'll be right there at your side. But I want you to do me one favor.

I raised an eyebrow in confusion.

What's that?

Put all that out of your head when you go down there tomorrow, and focus only on destroying Daiko, destroying Lucas, and walking out the 2 time Television Champion. Because if your not focused, you're going to lose. But if you're focused, I'm confident all these doubts in your head will be proven wrong when you win your championship back.

I nodded in agreement, and felt some confidence slowly coming back to me. Leave it to Becca to tell me exactly what I needed to hear in a moment of doubt, that's why she's the greatest. I still had my doubts going into tomorrow, but I was ready to give it my all and prove everybody wrong by winning back what's rightfully mine, what was stolen from me.

Three Days Earlier: Austin's Hotel Room, Dallas, Texas

I had finally arrived in Texas the night before, currently I was alone as Becca had a prior commitment in LA, Axl was with her as her security, and I had given The Elliots a couple days off, they had some family in Texas and wanted to take a couple days to visit them while we were here. I had just gotten back from a quick work out at the local gym, when I noticed a message on my phone. It was from my lawyer, who I had sent a contract to to look over, some company wanted to make me their spokesperson, and who could blame them? I mean, look at me.

Austin, good news. The contract looks pretty good, you do a couple commercials for them, do a little product placement when filming for your web series once in awhile, and rake in the cash! It's a great deal and I recommend taking it, I even got them up to give you an extra 10 grand just because of how big of a star you are!
I grinned reading the text, finally a breakthrough. This was a chance to really build my brand and I could use it as a stepping stone to bigger and better things. With how bad things have been lately, this was exactly the type of news I needed. Things can only go up from here.

An Unknown Day: Austin and Becca's Home, Los Angeles, California

The following was pre recorded and uploaded to Austin Angel's YouTube channel.

As the video begins to play, we see Austin Angel sitting in a brown leather chair, wearing a long sleeve blue dress dress shirt and black dress pants. Angel has a book on a table next to him, and next to the book is a glass of scotch, which Austin takes a sip of before looking at the camera.

Oh, hello there boys and girls, welcome. It's a good thing you found your way here today, because I have a very important story to tell you all, so please, have a seat and listen up.

Austin smirks as he picks up the book off the table, and opens it.

This is the story of two brave knights, who fought the good fight and tried to stop all the evil in the world. You see these knights thought if they worked together, both could rise up and rule the realm.

A picture comes on screen of Austin Angel and Daiko standing in the ring together as The Fallen.

Despite their differences, they stood together and fought. And sure, they were never the most successful team, but that's to be expected when one knight is too weak and pathetic to ever be anything more than lackey to the fastest, strongest knight in the entire kingdom.

A clip plays of Daiko getting beaten down by Freddie Vos and Derek Jacobs.

But the stronger knight, from day one the entire kingdom knew he was bound to be more than a knight, they knew one day he'd be the king. After all he had more talent, more dedication, and more drive than anybody.

Various clips of Austin Angel winning matches play on screen, as they end we see Austin taking another sip of the scotch.

Now here's where the story gets sad. You see that knight was so driven, so dedicated to becoming king of the castle, that he would do any crazy stunt to get there, and it led to him getting injured multiple times.

Multiple clips play of crazy stunts Angel pulled in matches, followed by him getting set on fire in the back of a car by Darius Black, and getting a severe leg injury from Derek Jacobs.

But don't worry, this story doesn't have a sad ending. Because eventually the knight returned, he saw a damsel in distress and being the hero he always was, he came to her rescue.

A clip of Austin Angel returning to PWC to save Serenity Skye from an attack by Bruce Thorn Jr in the steel cage match by jumping off the cage onto Thorn.

The peasants of the kingdom were so happy! They had their favorite knight back and he looked better than ever! But you see, the knight still had the same problem as before, he was too worried about entertaining the peasants. And it led to him losing more battles than any knight with his talent should.

Various clips of Austin Angel losing matches play, including him losing the TLC match at the first Last Rites.

Thankfully for the knight, he had found himself a gorgeous queen who showed him the way to glory and fame, and helped him rise up the ranks and become the king of the castle.

Clips play of Austin and Becca play, and are followed by him winning match after match after match, ending with him turning his back on the fans and winning the TV Title from Jensen.

Now not everybody liked the king, many thought the way he became king was wrong, it wasn't honorable they said. But the king didn't care, he had his queen and had found some loyal soliders of his own, and together they ruled the kingdom, and his reign was destined to last forever.

A picture comes on screen of Austin, Becca, Bret, Riley and Axl. Followed by a clip of Angel retaining his championship against Jensen.

Unfortunately for the king, the evil emperor didn't like him, he favored many others and wanted them to take the throne, and that's where one certain lowly peasant comes in. What was special about this peasant you might ask? The answer is nothing. Nothing was special about this peasant, but because he worshipped the king and wanted to be just like him and learned to fight just like the king, somehow, someway, this peasant was handed a shot at the throne from the emperor.

A picture of Lucas Hawthorne comes on screen, followed by a match graphic of him having a match with Austin Angel for the TV Title.

But of course the peasant was no match for the king, and the king destroyed him in battle, barely breaking a sweat in the process.

A clip of Angel beating Hawthorne to retain the championship plays.

The emperor wasn't happy, his favorite peasant had lost. So what did he do? He handed the peasant ANOTHER opportunity.

A clip plays of Lucas Hawthorne being named #1 contender for Last Rites.

And if that wasn't bad enough, remember the other knight from earlier in the story? The less talented one? He had long since given up, he was nothing more than a commentator for the longest time, but the emperor hated the king so much, that he convinced the knight to return and face the king. And the knight agreed, because he was jealous he never became anything more than a sidekick to the king.

A clip plays of Daiko coming out as the surprise opponent of Austin Angel at Vortex 19. Much to the surprise of Angel and the fans in attendance.

The knight was the last person the king thought he'd have to face, and the knight got lucky, he somehow managed to steal the crown from the king. Daiko got lucky at Vortex, he was lucky to win, he was lucky I didn't do to him what I did to Thorn when he got in my way and cripple him!

Austin throws the book on the ground in anger and stares into the camera.

Daiko I know you've always been jealous of me, jealous that I'm a better wrestler than you, I got the hot girl on my arm, the 7 figure bank account, and then it became too much for you once I did what you never could and became champion wasn't it? It killed you to sit at the commentary table and see how successful I had become didn't it? So when the chance came to steal my glory, you jumped right on it. I'm going to enjoy beating you at Last Rites.

Austin takes another sip of scotch.

And Lucas? I know you wanna be me, I can't blame you, everybody does. But you've done nothing to earn your spot in this match and you didn't even earn your spot in this company. It might not be personal between us, but you're standing on the tracks and the train is coming through, I'm going to run right through you to get back what's mine.

Austin grins and finishes off the glass of scotch before having an expression of anger cross his face as he looks back into the camera.

I am the best around and I don't care what I have to do, I WILL take my championship back Daiko, I WILL beat you again Lucas, I WILL prove you were never meant to be anything more than a failure Daiko, I WILL prove you're nothing but a wanna be Hawthorne, and I WILL leave Last Rites with my TV Championship! At Last Rites, you both WILL fall, because the two of you combined don't have as much talent as I do. I am the best damn wrestler to ever enter a PWC ring and you better be prepared to kill me if you wanna keep me from winning. At Last Rites, both of you are going to find out that coming for Austin Angel is a career killing move, just ask Bruce Thorn Jr.

Austin stands up and walks off, leaving the camera to show the empty chair. A moment later a hand comes over the camera, turning it off.
 

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Bring back Gary Oak!
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4,684 Posts
Chapter 2


Following Vortex 19

The show kept going on but for Daiko, the entire world had stopped moving. He’d done it. He’d fallen to his lowest point, he’d found salvation, he found his way back and now he was a Champion. It wasn’t the World or Legacy Championships liked he’d hoped in his original run, but it didn’t matter.

He’d finally done it.



2 Days After Vortex

It was only just beginning to sink in for Daiko. He was a Champion, he’d made his mark, but he knew this was as much a curse as it was a burden. Now he had a target on his back, and he was sure that Austin Angel and his company weren’t going to let this slight go without reprecussions. They were going to be angry and they’d want revenge. He was ready for this though, heckl he was almost begging for it. Austin needed to learn that the top of the world is a dangerous place and without the right people supporting you, you’re going to fall.

The plan had always been to push Austin over that ledge and watch him crumble before offering the support he needed. Be the guiding hand he would be desperately hunting for and help him find the right path to the top next time. There was no doubt in Daiko’s mind that his former tag partner would make a worthy Champion, but he’d failed himself by relying on underhanded tactics instead of his actual ability. Even during their match, Austin had had to utelise men like Axel just to save his skin. Daiko had felt like he was getting somewhere with Austin until that moment.

Lucas Hawthorne… Clouds of anger filled Daiko’s mind as the face of his apparant saviour appeared. This wasn’t right. Austin’s former foe stepping in and appointing himself hero when there was no need for it. If Axel had saved Austin, he and the Elliots would have just had to be dealt with another time. Austin would have continued on his fall towards self-destruction, but there would have been time to correct his path and bring him back. Now? Now Daiko wasn’t sure where Austin’s mind was.

Hawthorne had changed everything. Sure, it had guaranteed Daiko his title, but Angel was sure to fall back onto his companions now, making him even harder to reach.

Daiko is distracted as a pair of arms wrap around his chest and draw him in to a loving embrace. He leans back, a smile on his face, watching as one of the arms reaches away from him and lifts up his title.


You know, this is a lot uglier than I thought it would be. That Legacy one is much nicer.

Daiko laughs, a sound he was getting more and more accustomed to hearing from himself.

It’s not pretty, but it has character.

Samantha continues talking, but Daiko zones out, something clicking in his brain. This is what Austin has. Taking down Austin alone wasn’t enough, it wasn’t right. He found his happiness and it twisted him, moulded him into something he wasn’t. This happiness corrupted, but it still no doubt makes him feel whole. Bringing down Austin on his own would just leave him a shell, and that wasn’t the right move. It wasn’t what Daiko wanted for his former ally. The old Angel had to return, but this time he wouldn’t be alone. When Austin Angel falls, Becca McKay has to fall with him.


2 Months Before

A spark had been lit under Daiko, leaving him with a newfound love for life. Long gone were the days of finding solace in another bottle, he was finally finding himself once more. Getting up in the mornings no longer felt like a chore, all becaue of the person he was watching go about her day.

She had swept through his life, changing everything she touched without even so much as a single moment of distaste. He had fallen so far and she didn’t care in the slightest. She wasn’t there because he had been famous, or because he might have money, she stuck around because she cared. She didn’t let him off easily though, constantly challenging him as he tried to recover. She wasn’t afraid to call him out when he was refusing to change and that had done him a world of good, forcing him to keep up with a critical viewpoint once again.

He’d even begun working out once again, with the goals of meeting his old wrestling workouts once more, not because he’d been asked to, but because it gave him even more purpose. After so long he had something to fight for and should it ever be necessary, he was ready to do so.


What are you thinking about?

Daiko looks up at Samantha, smiling at her suddenly curious face.

Life mostly. Been a weird month.

She laughs.

As in, you’ve actually been doing something with your time instead of sitting back and complaining because Wrestling didn’t work out?

I mean I wouldn’t put it quite like that, but yeah. Pretty much.

Then you’re welcome.

Daiko laughs with her this time, not even bothering to argue back. She was completely right. He had been a wreck before her and now he had purpose again. He owed her everything and that still might not be enough.


3 Days After Vortex

Hawthorne… No matter how much Daiko tried to focus on Austin and Becca, he still found himself thinking about his self-proclaimed saviour. Lucas couldn’t have known about the plan, he was just trying to get one over on Austin, but it didn’t matter. His involvement in that match and his addition into the upcoming one changed everything, and none of it was falling into Daiko’s favour. He could handle Axel and The Elliots prior to the match, leaving it just Austin and Becca against himself, but now there was a third name in the fight, and it was one gunning for Austin, looking to sate his own desire for revenge.

Lucas Hawthorne had become an issue that was beyond Daiko’s control. He couldn’t attack him prior to the match, that would fall on Austin’s shoulders and cause him to drop deeper into his ‘us versus the world’ state of mind, and he’d push back against any hand, no matter how much help it was offering. No, Lucas had to be dealt with within the confines of the ring, in front of the audience, and it had to be Austin that removed him from the contest. If he wasn’t winning, Angel would need that crowning moment, a second in which he feels like a true hero, striking down his foes with righteous anger. He needed to be on top of the world so that Daiko could bring him crashing back down. Becca would and could be dealt with in time, but for now, he had to focus on laying the seeds with Austin.

Austin had to see that his own ability was what took him to the top. He might speak about it being all him, but his actions showed otherwise. He needed to truly open his eyes and watch himself break down an opponent who had slighted him. He needed to feel that spike of adrenaline, hear the cries of pain and see the damage he was causing so that he could finally understand. Austin needed to see himself as dominant and then he had to fall. He had to see his path as righteous and just before losing it all, one piece at a time. Cut him off from his allies, cut him off from his typical moves. Make him see that his path is predictable and leave him helpless. If Daiko could make Axel and The Elliots look like they just abandoned Austin, he’d reject them and retreat only to Becca McKay. From there it would just be a matter of breaking her down for the two to truly begin to tumble and for their sins to be washed away.


1 Month Ago

BE HUMBLE, MY CHILDREN. BE RIGHTOUS. FREE YOUR MIND AND WASH THOSE SINS AWAY. ARE YOU FREE?

I’m free.
 

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TEAM STORM
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313 Posts
Jensen
Of the Grey Colour of the Sky.


PORTLAND, OREGON
There's something about the Pacific Northwest, the scale of it, and the fact that not so long ago people came here and died getting here, and then died the first winter they were here. There's this breathtaking beauty, just a little bit of moss on the tree, just this little thread of danger, and the sinister.

For most of the year, the sky is covered with a blanket of grey clouds. Instead of the pounding rainfall of other areas of the US, Oregon rainfall is a yearly drizzle that darkens the sky, mildews towels, and brings many on the verge of depression. Despte the gloomy forecast, many people find this place home.

Jensen, a PWC superstar, is one of those people. Looking more like a lumberjack than a professional athlete of any kind, the Portland native kneeled down with his hands digging through the dirt. He grabs a handful, releases it back to the earth. He smiles.

Standing next to him was Morgan Laclaire, the hollywood actress who was engaged to him. Her blue eyes remained fixed on her fiancee, while her dark hair flapped in the wind.

Morgan: Can we go back in sweetie?

Jensen
: I am almost done, just another couple of minutes? The soil has to be perfect for my herb garden.

Morgan:
Ok, hurry up though. I have a suprise waiting for you when you get back. And you know how much you like my suprises.

Jensen:
Wait, is it what I think it is?

Morgan:
I am not saying!

Jensen smiles.

Jensen: While you wait for me, take a deep breath. Try to relax. The are out her is good for you. I know it isn't LA, but you will see how special this place is.

Morgan: But it is so grey and wet.

Jensen: I know this isn't beach weather, but you have to appreciate what is out here. See ths rock? I am willing to bet that it has been here for a long time. Old people once stood on this ground. Maybe even dinosaurs. You just have to appreciate the history...

Morgan
: Well, I am going to head on in. I have to prepare for your suprise.

Morgan looks over at Jensen and winks. He has already resumed looking at the soil....

An hour later...


Jensen walks slowly towards his home, stopping along the way to observe every detail of the surrounding land, such as the birds, clouds, flowers. He pauses to catch his breath, and resumes lugging the piece of wood and ax he had carried with him,

He soon notices Morgan, who is standing in the door way with her arms crossed.

Jensen leaves the axe outside but carries in the tree stump.

Morgan:
You can go ahead and leave that outside as well.

Jensen:
Are you kidding me? This is black cottonwood. Native Americans used the bark for treating all kinds of ailments, such as wounds and rheumatism. This is a god damn goldmine. At the very worst we can use this as furniture or something to tie our home together.

Morgan just stares.

Jensen: Something wrong?

Jensen begins to look around. He takes a deep breathe and notices faint scent of perfume in the air.

Jensen:
Wait, who is here?

Morgan:
Your suprise...

Jensen:
Wait. I thought you were going to help me convert all my digital files to VHS? You at least implied it earlier

Morgan
: I did no such thing.

Jensen:
Well, It was pretty clear to me...

Jensen then takes a seat on his chair. Soon a red headed woman walked into the room. Her curvy body and slightly vintage clothing stood out as she walked into the room. Her hourglass figure moved side to side like a wound up clock. She then pulls up a chair and sets her drink down on the coffee table.

Selene:
I hope I am not interrupting....

Morgan:
Oh, not at all.

Jensen: Uhm, what brings you around here?

Selene:
Straight to business, I love it. Anyway, it has been weeks since your last session. I am here to help you in anyway possible.

Jensen: Help with what?

Selene:
Help with exploring who you really are, Help with the struggles you face. Help you realze your true potential.Of course, that is only if you allow me to help.

Jensen, with his eyes fixed on Selene, doesn't say a word.

Morgan:
Come on sweetie, you will love it. At least do it for me.

Morgan then flashes her smle. The florescent lighting bounce of her blue eyes.

Jensen:
Ok fine. But this time, can we get some candles and insence to help set the mood?

Selene
: Sure, but trust me it isnt necessary.

Jensen: It is where I come from...

It took little time to prepare the room, so within a few moments the expected ambiance of the the room rose exponentially. The grey skies peak through the living room window. Knowing that this was a private moment between a leader of the Church and a member, new or old, Morgan LaClaire left the room.

Selene dragged her chair and sat directly across from Jensen. Her soft voice soon filled the room.

Selene: I want you to take deep slow breathes. Close your eyes. More deep breathes please. Now, do you remember the first passage in THE GOSPEL OF TRUTH?

Jensen nodded and took deep breath, breath after deep breath.

Selene: Then repeat with me...

What makes us free is the wisdom
of who we were
of what we have become
of where we were
of wherein we have been cast
of what birth really is
of what rebirth really is


Selene: Excellent. Morgan must be happy to see that you have taken the time to learn this for her. Now, tell me how are you?

Jensen:Ok, I guess. However, a bit humiliated to discover the black tights I've been wearing all day are opaque under certain lighting.

Selene:
How about your upcoming match?

It is what is. He is a former champ and I am a guy doing nothing. We both have nothing else going right now, so we just decided to give it a go. Can't really be motivated for that.

Selene:
Why the lack of motivation? From what I have seen you are a very talented individual.

Jensen stops and takes a sip of his favourite herbal tea.

Jensen: I'm not sure. It seems I have been stuck in this rut for some time. It seems like I just can't take it to the next level.

Selene smiles. Posturing up, she leans forward and stops about 4 inches from the PWc superstars head.

Selene: Oh come on, we both know that is not true. You do have this next level, and you have unleashed it before.

Jensen sits in silence.

Jensen: I don't know about that. I didn't like the results...

Selene:
You didn't like it because you didnt take it far enough. It failed because you didn't fully embrace it. I can help you with it. I know you have been hesitant to join us, and only meet with us out of love for Morgan, but i really feel you belong The Church of the Inner Light. Join us, and self discovery awaits you.

Jensen sat there. His eyes fixed on Selene.

Selene:
You know what needs to be done. It is your inner light Jensen. Embrace it. Nurture it. Be reborn...

The Portland native takes a calm deep breath. He reaches for his cup of tea and takes one long sip, before placing it on the brand new tree stump. He takes his hand, runs it through his hair as he contemplates this decision. Nodding his head, he begins the process.

Jensen: My light, it shines within....

Jensen repeates the words, this time with his eyes wide shut, once again blocking out the blanket of grey from the window.



......................​
 

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Los Angeles, California
1900 Hours


Who was she?

Bianchi had found himself in a position that granted him knowledge untold. He could see the darkest secret of everyone from billionaires to world leaders, secrets that would grant him any amount of power that he desired, and yet he still couldn’t find anything more than the very basics about the first challenger to his Legacy Championship. He didn’t even know her true name.


We’ve got people running her face through our databases looking to see if there’s a match, but is this going to matter, Jacob? We’ll get her name, but there’s clearly something we’re missing about her beyond that.

Gareth Walker, Jacob’s most trusted ally, was standing on the other side of Sirius Lane’s old desk from Bianchi, a reserved look on his face as he relayed the information to his new boss.

She’s lost something along her path, Gareth. Something that changed her to her very core.

So what do you suggest looking for? We can dedicate the majority of our resources into finding that when this group find their match.

Bianchi thinks for a moment before responding.

Her childhood will be a good place to start. Focus on her early teenage years, she’ll have been at her most vulnerable there. This ‘Old Blood’ talk sounds almost cult-like, so we should work with that as a leading theory.

Gareth watched Jacob work with a smile on his face. The crinkled brow, the quiet voice, the way he leaned on his desk. Jacob Bianchi may have spent years separating himself from Sirius Lane, but the two remain incredible alike.

As for her family, I don’t know. These types often pick up the poor and the forgotten, but she carries herself differently. I can’t tell how much of that is upbringing and how much of that was taught, but she’s different.

Different how?

Shoulders back, little to no slouching. An air of self-confidence that’s remarkably hard to teach. She’ll likely put this down to being a huntress or things of that nature, but there’s something beyond that. My guess is that we’ll find out fairly quickly once we have her name.

Anything else you can think of? We can put most of this to good use in our search.

Look for family members. Some may be dead, but there will likely be a younger sibling somewhere. She’s protective of her pendant, too much so for it to just simply be something that was stolen. Perhaps it was a gift. If we could get our hands on it maybe we cou--

Mr. Walker and Mr. Bianchi, sir!

Jacob and Gareth turn to look at a pudgy man in his late forties waving around a sheet of paper. Bianchi nods and the man rushes into the office, closing the door behind him.

We think we have a family name.

Bianchi nods and extends his hand, taking the paper and reading the name which is underneath a picture of what looks to be a very young Annalise.

Del Soros? Why do I recognise that name?

The mother and father divorced years ago, which seemed to come about due to rumours of the mother’s mental health issues and her physical abuse to both the father and children.

They were a big money family, correct?

Yes sir.

Walker smiles as Bianchi nods, clearly happy with himself.

Anything else about the family?

Not much just now, but we’re going to look into them some more.

No need. This is exactly what I needed. Instead, focus on Liza’s years following her parent’s divorce. Focus on where she went with her fath--

Mother, sir. The mother got the children in the divorce.

Bianchi raises an eyebrow, finally surprised.

Even with the rumoured mental health issues? That’s not exactly a glowing example of this country’s system, but okay. Focus on life with the mother and the years following this.

The pudgy man runs off, closing the door behind him once more.

Well guessed, Jacob.

Bianchi shakes his head.

Very basic deduction based on what I can see and what she says. Beyond that I can’t get much on her, and the match alone wasn’t enough.

You’re not going in blind…

...but I am going in without any knowledge of her post childhood. I’m the Champion and I’m walking into her hands with little more than the basics of her life as backup.

You should have gone to her during that Last Rites pre-show thing. Tried to bait her into revealing something that we could have used or even attack her and show that you’re the one in control.

No. Page and I have been toeing the line with Clement for far too long now. We need to give him time, especially now that all eyes are upon him. If he shows the slightest bit of weakness the press are going to be all over him, and he’ll be able to hide in that. Silence is our best weapon right now, so silent we will remain. Besides, attacking Miss Del Soros would have just given her more reason to fight. So far she’s just trying to appease her own desires for glory, and that’s something I’ve been fighting my entire life.

You’re leaving this down to chance.

I’m leaving this down to my own ability versus hers. I’m stronger, heavier and taller, she’s faster and can no doubt take a beating. These are things I can work with, and these are weapons I can use. Time was never in our favour here, so I’ll have to take what I get unfortunately.

This is still incredibly risky.

And yet it’s necessary. If I’m to play my part I’ll have to defend my Legacy Championship fairly and I’ll have to do it the way Clement wants. Let him have him fun here, I’ll be the one who wins when it’s all said and done.

Speaking of…

Yes, I think it might be time. After though.

I’ll get everything in place.

Thank you, Gareth. For all of this.

Walker nods and exits the room, leaving Bianchi all alone in his office. He sinks back into his chair and smiles. This minor setback aside, things were all going to plan. He leans forward after a few minutes and begins to shuffle through his notes once more, looking to formulate a plan of attack on Annalise.


* * *


London, England
1600 Hours


How long did it take you to find me, Jacob?

A few hours. You’re not as well hidden as I thought you’d be.

Hide in plain view, my dear. It’s the last place people look.

Bianchi watches as his former mentor sips at his drink, the two of them once again sat in the dusty bar that they first met all those years ago. This time Bianchi wasn’t so easily fooled by appearances though. He might look like a banker once more, but years of experience had taught him otherwise. Jacob Bianchi had dealt with all kind of scum in his life, but he knew that Sirius Lane was quite possibly the most dangerous of them all. A man that could have brought down empires for the smallest of slights.

Once upon a time Bianchi would have feared this power, he would have shrunk back from it, but no more. He was every bit the master that Sirius Lane had once been, and that power now rested in his hands.


To what do I owe this pleasure? I must admit that I didn’t expect us to be reminiscing so soon. If I’d have known, I might have prepared something a lot more special.

I’m here because I need some advice.

Sirius smiles.

You’re starting to realise that this position of yours doesn’t just grant you access to every answer you desire?

That and more.

Good. You’re finally learning the exact same thing I did when I finally build my own empire. Just because you know how to take down a King or how to control a President, doesn’t mean you know how to break any random person that you find on the street. Some simply don’t share their secrets, and they will forever remain beyond your reach because of it. You’re trying to take a company built upon targeting public figures and you’re trying to force it to work on singular people who live their own small and relatively unremarkable lives. You can find their names, you can touch on their past, but you’ll never understand them as people until you see them as people. This is why I was a master of our craft, Jacob. Not because I built a mountain of secrets, but because I understood just how to get people to share those secrets. Power and threats are one thing, but subtlety is true power. Unlocking their secrets is one thing, but doing it without them knowing is another.

Sirius takes a quick sip of his drink before continuing.

I warned you of this when I left, but you’ve failed to heed it. You’ve become a threat. You’re no longer someone hiding in the shadows following my every command, Jacob, instead you’re a living breathing person, and in your line of work, they know that you have weaknesses. Ernesto Clement knows, Jason Nero knew and this Miss Del Soros will see. No matter how much of a God this power makes you feel like, you’re still little more than a man. You have weaknesses, you have desires and you have flaws. We all do. The difference between you and me is that I was smart enough to hide behind layers and layers of lies and deceit, while using others to execute my will.

You’re recommending I quit?

I’m recommending that you rethink your entire strategy in that company. I know what you and Miss Page are planning and that is going to put a target on your chest. If you’re not careful, it might be one that you struggle to escape from.

After all this time you still doubt me?

Yes, Jacob. I do.

For the first time in a long time, Jacob truly felt like he’d lost a fight. He’d usurped Sirius, taken his command, and yet he was still sitting in front of the man, looking to learn. He had the world at his fingertips, but he was still hopelessly far from where he thought he’d be. Jacob gets to his feet and pushes money down on to the table, looking to pay for the drinks. Sirius smiles up at him understandingly.

I didn’t intend to cause you pain, Jacob, but this is warning that you needed to hear. Pick your battles carefully and you’ll be a king. Continue to swing wildly and you’ll lose everything.

Bianchi makes his way out of the bar, unwilling to say any final words to his former mentor. Sirius was right. In his thirst for power over Clement he’d made himself a target, and he had been proud of it. He’d welcomed the threat. He wasn’t a master of this business and if he didn’t pull his act together, he would just be another fool destined to fail.
 

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Hammerpunch RP said:
OOC: This isn't much, and it isn't very good, but I didn't want to leave anybody hanging since it is Last Rites. Cheers.



DONALD HAMMERPUNCH

FROM WALLS TO ASHES
Several Weeks ago...

It all went up in flames.

The donjitsu master laid out on the ground, with smoke filling his lungs. In his hands clutched only a few medals, and ribbons, which made up only a fraction of his career accolades.

Tiny flames drop from the sky like fireflies.

The donjitsu master begins to move. He lets out a groan as the heat begins to bear down on him.

He coughs.

He coughs again.

The smoke tickles his lungs, He sits up and watches as the remaining walls. A small ember falls down from the sky like a firefly. It catches his kimono jacket. Hammerpunch quickly turns his head towards the sleeve of his gi top. It glows for a moment before dying out.

The 9th degree blackbelt slowly rises to his feet. With his head swirling, he staggers backwards, barely able to keep his balance.

He looks up at the sky. Grey smoke fills the night sky. In the background sirens can be heard.

Soon the emergency response vehicles soon arrive and they spring into action. Large streams of water pound the flames of the once proud dojo into submission. The once proud dojo has turned into a pile of ash, and the still proud sensei looks on from the ambulance gurney.

A movement in the shadows caught his eyes. This was not the movement of an undisciplined individual. This movement was graceful. This was the movement of master who was in total control of his limbs. With the paramedics distracted, Hammerpunch stumbled awkwardly to the
source of the shadows. Unlike his target, he was clumbsy with his movements, and almost tripped over his own pant leg.

"You look like a drunken oxe"

HP: Believe me, I feel like one. What brings you hear sensei Rolling Thunder?

RT: You know why I am here. I warned you weeks ago a war was coming. You didn't listen, and now your dojo is a pile of ash, and Gustav Pendragon and his army have gotten stronger. You know what you must do.

HP: I am not ready.

RT: You are 39 years old. You are as ready as you will ever be. Stop wasting your time with your PWC and become the Hammerpunch! The Order of the Living Weapons demands it!

The former PWC champion stood in silence. He tightened his black belt and nodded. He then heard the sound of footsteps over broken glass. He turned around to find a flash light in his eyes.

Fireman: Whoa, calm down buddy. Lets get you back to the ambulance. We aren't done treating you.

The fireman then lead him back to be treated. Hammerpunch looked one last time at the burnt remains of his dojo, and one fnal time at the shadows to find nobody.
Posting for HP.
 

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Annalise of the Old Blood




Last Rites: A Reconciliation.



A Harrowing Past.



7 Years Ago


Are you sure we should be doing this?

Intent on pushing forward to complete the task ordained to her, the order's most trusted minion turns round to meet the eyes of two scared lamb unwilling to sacrifice themselves for the greater cause.

I don't like this Annie, what if we get caught?

You are beautiful on the inside.


This is no time for crying, you really don't get it do you? Getting this ornament will help us win favour with the priests and push us higher up the order. Now come on you two, help me get over.


The two accomplices hold their hands out as they push up Annalise up to the top of the wall. Whilst the boy manages to climb himself, Joyce jumps towards her older sister and gets pulled up over the wall. They all jump down, successfully infiltrating the targeted property.

You are innocence personified.


Shush! Get down!

What is it Owen?

She crouched down with the other two and scouted round the property, looking at every corner to see if she could spot any movement but everything was still and quiet. He's such a wimp.

Nothing is there Owen, you are being paranoid. Come on, we don't have much time.

Pushing further forward, the loyal subject leads the two sacrificial lambs towards the entrance of the property. When getting to the door, she instructs Owen to pick the lock to force the door open. She watches carefully, cool as a cucumber as her doe eyed sister shakes in her boots.

And I'll drag you down.....and sell you out.

After a number of seconds, Owen manages to force open the lock. The door swings open as the three sneak into the house with Annalise leading the way. She checks all sides before motioning to the others to come in.

Let's split up, Joyce you check the front, I'll check the living room, Owen you check the bedrooms. We know what we are looking for.

Owen makes his way upstairs to check the bedrooms as Annalise goes into the living room keeping an eye on her sister as she's checking the front rooms. Determined to find the ornament, she regularly checks up with Joyce to make sure she is searching every area of the rooms she has been assigned to. All that mattered was finding the key to her ascension in the order.

I am cold like December snow, I have carved out this soul made of stone.

Annie, I've found it!

Her doting sister was all too loud in excitement having found what they were looking for. Annalise felt like she ought to tell her sister to be quiet but before she could even think, a dark figure appeared from the hallway, teething with anger and more importantly......armed.

Get down!

Out of pure extinct, Annalise jumped on top of her younger sister and put her down to the ground covering her to protect her. The man's shot barely missing them both. Straight away, Joyce pushes Annalise out of the way and starts running towards the door.

And I will drag you down and sell you out

Annalise follows her as shots continue to fire at them. The younger sister moving so quick out of the house that she had gotten out of Annalise's vision for a moment. As she barges through the door, she sees her sister already at the gate, rushing through and going towards the road.

And then it happened.

It was as if time stood still and flashed before her eyes, Joyce's petite and weak body had smashed and flown across the windshield of the oncoming car. Screeching and sliding across the road, the drivers attempts to pull off an emergency stop had been for nought. She had come crashing down from a sickening height, her bones shattering under the weight of the impact. Annalise stood frozen from shock, at first not fully comprehending what she had just witnessed. When it had sunk in that Joyce was seriously hurt, she couldn't contain herself.

Joyce!!!!


***


A Remorseful Present



Five Days Before Last Rites II


I don't deserve this...

The blood of the wolf was dripping down from the trophy head, enveloping the altar once more as the Huntress was deep in prayer. Though this was no ordinary ritual of ceremony, there was no words of malice, of lust, greed, or treasure. No....this was a plea for courage and strength, a cry for help, anything to stop the pain.

Please make it stop....make it stop, make it stop, make it stop!

Over and over again, the flashing images of that fateful night had been pierced into Annalise's mind, body and soul. The screeching of the brakes, the sound of her sisters bones shattering and crunching under the weight of the car, the sickening thud as her lifeless body came smashing down on to the concrete. For days, she had the same occurring dream and vision that defined the last several years of her life.

I don't deserve this, why am I the one standing and not her? Please make it stop, make it stop!

Tears started pouring, literally flooding down the face of the budding Huntress, though right now she felt like a pretender, a fake that had desecrated the sacred tomb of the old blood. Any strength that it took to be a proud member of the Church did not exist at this very moment. Her entire body shaking uncontrollably from the emotional pain that had succumbed her.


Embraced by the darkness I'm losing the light.

I can't do this anymore....the PWC, the Old Blood, Jacob Bianchi....Why me.... I-

Lady Annalise?

The Huntress suddenly jolted up, surprised by the sudden light tap on the shoulder. She turned her head round to meet the warm eyes of Maria, the young assistant of the Priest Vessemir.

You're shaking....don't tell you are getting cold feet mere days before your big title match?

I....I don't know what to do, it won't stop, please make the visions st-

This is no time for a Huntress to be crying, you're stronger than this. Imagine if Vessemir saw you in this state? This isn't what he would want from his protégé before her big hunt.

Though the words were harsh, the tone of her voice, the touch of her hands which had met hers, the look in her eye were full of empathy and affection. It was just enough for Annalise to gradually calm herself down and eventually stop shaking. She stood up from her knelt position and started pacing.

This was the last thing I wanted....for anyone to see me in this state, particularly here...you're right, I can't win if I'm like this.....it's just, Jacob Bianchi....he reminds me too much of my past.

Maria gives a confused look in reaction to what Annalise is saying.

You aren't making any sense, you don't even know the guy.

Exactly, I don't know the guy....yet this is personal for me. The type of person he is, what motivates him....I've been fighting people like him my entire life.

My sister......you know I used to be in another cult once, a religious cult.....it was nothing like this. Individuality there bred contempt, being a lamb and following the leaders is what got you reward. It's not like the Old Blood which prides itself on being the individual that follows their own path.

I had a friend there once....we were close, almost like family. We gave each other everything, I had taught him everything I knew, protected him when he needed it, stood up for him when he got in trouble with the order....and yet at both mine and my sisters most dying need....he betrayed us. He stabbed us in the back and for what? For his own selfish gain, for more influence and standing in the order.

You know why I'm taking this so personally with Jacob Bianchi right in front me? Because he is exactly the same kind of person as those who have betrayed me. No matter how brief or long it was, he was a follower, he followed in the footsteps of Jason Nero, much like I followed those around me. Then right when it suited him and he had everything to gain, he stabbed him in the back and betrayed his trust. Just like I was forsaken.


I get it...so the guy reminds you too much of the type of person that has hurt you in the past and it's gotten you all jumbled up.....but that doesn't really explain why you were so shaken up, in a way I've never seen you.....there's more to this isn't there?

What have I become, now that I've betrayed. Everyone I've ever loved, I pushed them all away?

My sister.....I put her in a position she should have never been in. I dragged her along in my selfish desire to please those that we were associated with. I wanted to have more influence in the order much like those who turned on me, I'm just as much to blame....no I'm more to blame. Had I never pressured her..had I listened to her concerns...she wouldn't be in the position she is in right now. Because of me she got hurt....she's bound to a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

We may have in the end been too trusting and got deceived, but it was because of me that she no longer can live a real life. So aren't I the real villain here? What makes me any better? Why do I deserve to even be here standing when I couldn't even protect my own flesh and blood?!


It all became too much once again as Annalise broke down into tears. She had been holding on to the guilt of that incident for years, she couldn't help but take responsibility for what had happened. Yet all it took was a few words for everything to finally make sense.

What was the reason you sought out this place to begin with?

It was a question that had been asked so many times since she came, one which she avoided answering honestly thinking that she would appear weak. But Vessemir had already shown her how wrong she was, it was her lack of honesty concerning her true motivations and desires that had made her weak.

She is.

Then you are not like them. A person with an evil heart does not care or put others before themselves but a selfless person with no conception of who is worth their affection has no moral high ground. You have a motivation that is worth fighting for, someone you want to protect and provide for. That isn't acting out for the sake of power or personal gain, though as you know we aren't above taking in people who wish to do so. You have a reason to fight that is bigger than anything your opponent could fathom, you have her. You're still by her side aren't you not?

It was right then and there that it all clicked. Of course....everything I've been doing is for her. That's what this is all about right? Annalise felt a giant weight lifted off her shoulders, for years she had blamed herself for what had happened to Joyce. It was all so obvious...She had finally been made to see what she should had known all along. It was an accident.....a horrible accident which no one could have forseen.


Now get up, you have a Legacy title to win.


***



A Prospectus Future.



One Day After The Road to Last Rites


M-M-M-Miss Annalise

Not being able to contain her nerves, a young lady approaches an icy cold figure. Dressed up in gothic inspired red and black attire, the object of the young woman's fears slowly turns her head, meeting her blank white dead eyes with the timid doe that had approached her.

M-M-Mister Clement would like to see you now, please, this way.

Annalise without even saying a word, nods in response to the PWC interviewer and slowly stands up from up her seat. It didn't take much observation to see that everyone at the offices in PWC were on edge with her presence being here. The sideways looks, the concerned facial expressions, the whispers amongst colleagues....The backhand slap delivered to Danny Eriksen was witnessed by every PWC fan and employee associated with the company. So much so that many of the PWC had been avoiding her......it was a miracle that Emma Mason gave her a microphone this past PWC without any resistance whatsoever. The other backstage interviewer Kira Wells however.....was still shaking as she followed her up to the Chairman's office.

She's scared to death of me.

Having reached Ernesto's office, Kira opened the door and without saying a word guided the Huntress in to meet the chairman. The room itself was decorated in memorabilia as to be expected. Posters of past PPV's including last year's Last Rites, placards, trophies....pictures of past champions and wrestlers....though there were two things that struck out to Annalise more than anything.....the first being the chessboard and pieces on Clement's desk....eerily similar to the recent poster that was unveiled...the second being Clement himself, holding a framed picture in his hands which was studying carefully...at a glance looking at the photo, Annalise knew straight away who it was....

Clement's daughter....

I've been meaning to meet you like this since you've been signed....you have made quite the impression young lady. Dare I say, struck fear into the eyes of many here. Please, take a seat.

The Chairman by this point had turned round to meet the eyes of Annalise, though she did not reciprocate his offer, instead standing still with her arms folded. Clement however, pays no mind.

You know we've had many champions in this company....some of them having the honour of holding the Legacy Championship....the title which you earned the right to compete for at Last Rites.....you are no doubt very talented, an extremely skilled competitor and a very dangerous one. You could be good enough to be only the 2nd female to ever win a title here....

Annalise noticed the gleam in Clement's eyes and voices mentioning Annalise being potentially the 2nd ever female champion, no doubt proud of his beloved daughter Cheri Hayven.

I noticed you were looking at the first.....I'm sorry to say I'm not Cheri Hayven, much less your daughter.

Clement frowned and shook his head.

No you most certainly are not....you've earned the championship shot no doubt, but how you have been treating my staff is reprehensible. No matter how you feel about my interviewers, they are my employees and they are not to be harmed. Under any normal circumstance I would at least fine you, if not strip you of your opportunity and have you suspended.

Fuming at the threats being thrown, Annalise throws herself forward towards Clement but stops in her tracks when Clement puts his hand out.

But.....these are not normal circumstances. I had to throw a last minute battle royal to get a challenger for the Legacy Championship and it's too late to find another challenger. Plus....as much as I dislike how you acted two weeks ago, Jacob Bianchi is a much bigger problem. I will admit to you this much, I do not want him as champion holding my show hostage.

Young lady, I shouldn't need to tell you how important this is. You have a tremendous opportunity in front of you on the biggest stage in PWC. Winning that championship will put you in the history books and propel you to being one of the biggest wrestlers in the world.....and could be your first step to the top.


So Anna-

Just as he is about to finish his pep talk, Clement stops mid sentence as Annalise sits down in the seat and picks up one of the chess pieces and starts toying with it through her fingers.

What are you doing?! Are you even listeni-

This is a nice chess set you have here......is that what you based the poster off of?...

Annalise smiles and licks her lips, donning that familiar sick carnivorous smile of hers...

It's nice being the king of your own world isn't it? You get to run your empire and use all your pieces to make sure you come out on top. That's what a good strategist does right? But let me guess....your knight in shining armour, the returning and conquering hero was supposed to vanquish the evil villain....but the castle was just too big of an obstacle to climb.....correct?

Well, if we are going to go by chess pieces, you'd be my queen in play.

Annalise had to laugh....pathetic.

Really? I'm flattered....I thought that would be a role reserved for Brittany Page.

Clement grumbles seemingly out of anger. Which only heightens Annalise's amusement.

But you see, this is the most important piece right here in my hand. Every king needs his subjects...his pawns, they are the lambs which are lead to the slaughter. But in my world....we have a saying...The Beasthood ravages the lambs who follow the herd. I'm sure no doubt you could send many pawns charging towards your target and eventually, you'll wear him down long enough to take him out....

But there's one problem you seem to have not considered.

Annalise suddenly jolts up and sends the chessboard and pieces flying off the table towards Clement who stands up surprised.

I'm a huntress! I'M NO GOD DAMN LAMB!

So if you came here to give me a pep talk and fire me up so you can use me for your gain then save your breath. I will not be used just so that you can dispose of me once I am no longer needed. I have enough more than enough motivation, more than you can ever imagine.


And someone that is worth more to me than your stupid power struggle.

I have Jacob Bianchi, a killer whose been the most deadly of predators whose yet to be beaten and I have a trophy waiting for me to claim as my own....that being the legacy championship.

For all of your posturing and high mighty moral grandstanding that you spewed at me earlier, you are no different from Bianchi himself. But here's the problem Ernesto, Bianchi can plan all he wants, he can try and figure out my moves, how to slow me down, how to manipulate me the way you just tried to now but I'm not going to give him the time to think. The problem with Nero, your knight and saviour is that he was too much alike Bianchi. They are both thinkers, both strategists, both do not like to leave anything to chance. Well the easiest person to read is one that thinks like you and that's why Jacob was so successful.


I will strike hard, and I will strike fast. I will go at a pace that he can't handle and I will be flexible in my attacks and my tactics, so much so that he will not get comfortable, he won't be able to predict what I'll do and he won't have the time to be react. A huntress can be manipulative, a huntress in combat can be as cold, callous and rigorous as anybody but we can also be adaptive and relentless. Can Bianchi handle the pressure when he's facing an opponent he can't control or predict? I don't think he can....

Annalise with fire and rage in her eyes, turns round and starts slowly walking away

You can thank me after I give Jacob his Last Rites.

Annalise continues walking towards the door, leaving a bemused Clement to figure out how to handle his newest superstar.

A Few Hours after the accident.


Just....a little....further

Annalise had continuously refused help from her friend Owen to carry the lifeless body of her sister back to the camp where they had been living.

We should have taken her to a doctor Anna, what are you doing?

No! The priests can handle this, we have people who can give medicine the-

They aren't doctors! Listen to yourself, you aren't being rational. At least let me carry her for a while, you are going to exhaust yourself.

No! She's...my responsibility. Listen, I'm really grateful you managed to talk us out of there and get the guy to leave us alone and not shoot us. But this is all my fault, she's my sister, this is my burden to ba-

Stop right there!

Just as they were arguing, they were stopped in their tracks by some robed men. Priests of the order had somehow managed to find the three before they could reach the camp. Though the voice had not come from the frontline, eventually another robed man with a necklace of a giant cross came forward.

Where is the ornament? I told you not to come back until you bring it to me.

My sister is hurt! Can't you see! She got ran over, she needs medical attention!


Annalise, as a way to appeal to the priests, puts down her sister right in front of them and makes clear where she has been hurt. The leader however, shows no concern whatsoever.

If she has been seriously injured then she is of little use to us. If she has become a cripple it is god's will, she clearly did not have what it takes to become god's chosen. Now where is the ornament?!

Enraged by what she's heard, Annalise tries to charge at the priest but as she does so she gets wacked from behind. Before she knew it, she was being restrained by Owen/COLOR] and two of the priests. They stood her up as she took a couple of big shots both to the face and stomach. They lift her up as she is face to face with the boy who turned on her.

What are you doing?! Why? What the fuck Owen?!

Isn't it obvious dear Anna? I'm winning favour with the high priests
 

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Darius is pacing back and forth in a hallway backstage.

DS: “I am going, to fucking have a fit, Maricia.”

He turns and we can see he’s on the phone.

DS: “He’s not fucking here. We have all of an hour until the show starts, and the kid isn’t here!”

Darius pauses and takes a deep breath.

DS: “Alright, took a breath, I’m still fucking mad. Happy now?”

A door swings open backstage, Sway storms in with his headphones on, dragging his Darius chucks his phone into the wall, shattering it.

DS: “What the fuck took you so long? I haven’t seen you all month, where--”

Sway glares at Darius.

SA: “I had some stuff to take care of.”

He slowly begins to smile.

SA: “Don’t worry Darius. I have this. I know Kidd.”

He goes to walk away, but Darius grabs his arm. Sway’s headphones fall down around his shoulders.

DS: “So. Do. I. I know Kidd West better than anyone. You’re getting fucking arrogant. That’s what did me in the first time. Kidd will rip you to shreds if he gets the chance and you need to be aware of that.”

Sway swats Darius’ hand off, and backs Darius into a corner.

SA: “I know, what I am capable of. I know who I am, but it appears you have no clue. The work, I had to put in. The stress, I had to undertake, just to make it here. I have done reprehensible things. I have sacrificed relationships, my health, and my own fucking family to be here. I left my family, in poverty, so that maybe one day I could make it to the big leagues. I told myself, I would go back for them, that I would bring my wealth back to my people. And you know what? They all ended up either dead or in jail, before I could get back to them. I buried my mother this week, and I’m still fucking here. So Kidd West can do all he wants. I have nothing left to lose. Let him take what he wants, because I am going to take, everything from him.”

Sway backs away from Darius slowly. He raises a taped hand, and points at Darius.

SA: “Everything that happens to Kidd. It’s on you.”

He turns around, snatches his suitcase, and heads down the hall. Darius smooths out his suit, as a smile creeps across his face.
 

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DR NERO
LAST RITES TWICE




It all comes down to this. Dallas, Texas. In front of one hundred thousand people and millions all over the world.... My greatest achievement or my most humiliating defeat. And to think, it's not even going to be fought man to man. It won't be who is the better man, but who is the most opportunistic, the man with the best timing.. Or is that the man with the most luck?

It was one year ago at Last Rites, when atop a custom built tank, I held the HeVyweight Championship of the World. One year ago I was beaten by Donald Hammerpunch and what did he do with such an honour? He flushed it down the toilet. He lost the belt to Crowley and he never recovered. Me? Well I was banned from competing for the belt.

I had fought against the ridiculous notion of being someone who had put PWC into disrepute. I built PWC... And after I left due to that snivelling Bianchi wanting to put me on the shelf, take out his greatest competitor, Ernesto Clement comes crawling back. In person, no less, does he come back on his hands and knees and dangles the greatest carrot in front of me.

The championship of the world.

So here I am on my private jet, an hour out from Dallas, contemplating my future... A cross roads... If I win I once again can say that I am the very best in the world. That's what the belt means. That's what it has always meant. Crowley has every right to call himself King. No one has been able to best him. Until now. He has never faced me. It is time that he did.

But there is that other road... If I lose, if I'm not there in time, if Shadow or Crowley have that one second head start, what is my journey then? I truly can't think of that. Not now. Not when I am so close.

Ever since Clement found me at the cemetery, in the pouring rain, I have been preparing myself. My mind, my body, my soul. Everything that I am comes down to Dallas, Texas. Comes down to Last Rites. Complete redemption is mine when I take back what I lost one year ago.

Look at Ellie, sitting there, her tanned skin soaking in the cloud's reflection of the sun. It is time to stop using her. We do love each other. And after I win, I will ask for her hand in marriage. She has been through all of this with me. She is the only one who knows the truth.

I have done some bad things... Made poor decisions. But I have paid for them and then some. Dallas, Texas will be my redemption. Dallas, Texas will be my greatest hour. I will knock the crown off the King's head. I will throw the shadowy court jester out of my ring and I will take back what is mine. Nothing more, nothing less. It is my time now. This is all I have left. I have nothing more to give. Nothing left... All I have. This is my Last Rites.
 
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