Previously...

Vincent Black is assigned Human Resource duty after injuring his shoulder at Toxic Tag.

Joe Montuori is chastised by Vincent Black, told to keep his eyes on the prize.

Betsy Granger, Kasey Winterborn and Shawn Warstein make a clean sweep of Cure opponents, cementing themselves as #1 contenders for the Islands Championship instead of The Cure.

During both Betsy vs Eoin and Shawn vs Apathy, there is untold number of sideshow battles between the teams.

Druscilla White cashes in Blood Money to be declared the challenger for the Bareknuckle Championship at the forthcoming PPV, ASCENSION.

TODRICK TABOR-RAMSEY defeats JOE MONTUORI to claim the FIGHT! NYC Manhattan Championship in one of the upsets of the season thus far.

After the Manhattan match, FYA, Dynasty, The Cure, and Watson/Warstein/Winterborn/Granger all tangled again. Air raid sirens rang out through the arena, before Occhi saw Xavier Black and Miss F declare

LOCKDOWN.

Miss F: The inmates think they run the asylum.

Xavier Black: And that changes now.

 

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The Climb

The city of New York is alive all around Fight Tower in Manhattan. As a drone shot shows us every side of the building, it begins to slow, and the building falls away, leaving nothing but a jagged spire sticking out of the ground. The drone shot continues to spin around it, until we reach the top of the spire, and find a throne placed in the middle of the area where we expect the tip of the spire had fallen off. The drone gets closer to the chair, and we find it empty. It is made of brass, and satin. No, something that resembles bone, and leather. No, it is gold, and silk. Or is it just a chair? As we pan backwards we find Xavier Black, and Miss F, standing on the left and right of the chair respectively.

Xavier Black: We all know what the word Ascension means, so I won’t annoy you by defining it for dramatic purposes. I am sure there is some value in it, but I think better of you. Instead, I simply ask, what does Ascension mean to you?

Miss F: When you think of it, rising to a place of improved standing, and increased power, what do you picture? Is it you standing alone looking down on each and all that you put down to climb up?

Xavier Black: Or are you joined by those who’ve helped you? Standing amongst them with gratitude for the effort they put forth to move you toward the goals you have your eyes set on, common or otherwise.

Miss F: This is the question that we shall have answered at our end of season event; Ascension.

The tower reappears out of the ground and it goes translucent. Several of the floors are isolated and turned different colors. From yellow, to orange, to red, to gold.

Miss F: At Ascension, each of our groups, consisting of five total members of their choosing, will be tasked with fighting against each other for the right to Ascend to the tower and claim their reward. 15,000 blood money.

Xavier Black: We’ll get to that in a second. First, let us make it clear, This will not be an easy task. The fight will start in the pit, continue to the ring area, and from there it will move to the dining hall, and then finally, to the newly completed rooftop cage. There are surprises to be expected, of course. But the rules you will follow during these fights are not part of them,

Miss F: And the rules are simple; Each team will designate a leader. The goal is to help get your leader to the top of the tower, and claim the prize. Of course, it wouldn’t be that simple, would it? The winning team will have to decide. Do they split the pot amongst themselves, and act as individuals? Or do they decide to give their leader a title shot, and raise their collective flag as one cohesive unit?

Xavier Black: As team members get eliminated, the outcome each wants will become more difficult. But should a leader be eliminated, the outcome becomes less desirable. As the loss of any leader for a said team cuts that teams profits by half. Which means your best intention is to protect them now…

Miss F: And betray them…later?

Xavier Black: So Join us here in Fight Tower, for As-

Miss F: X…the other thing…

Xavier Black: Other thing? Oh, by all means.

Miss F: Since the entire building will be a battleground, we’ve decided not to have a live crowd in attendance for Ascension..

Xavier Black: But that is only for night two, where the war of the stables will take place.

Miss F: On night one of course, there will be an audience in attendance. To watch not one..

Xavier Black: Not a few…

Miss F: But every single title is defended  live and in person, and of course, on The FIght Network!

Xavier Black: Who will rise? Who will fall? And what choices will be made? We can’t wait to find out, and they can’t wait to

Korrupt vs Jennie Fenix

Damon Riggs: What a show that’s going to be!

JM Brilliance: What about those without a stable? Or friends?

Damon Riggs: …you thinking about entering?

Korrupts music hits before JM can answer, and he’s in the ring in a flash, his mask and painted face glowing in the darkness and strobe lit arena. Signs disparaging the cure as well as supporting it stick out like sore thumbs on signs made of orange and yellow poster paper. Korrupt doesn’t blink the entire time he’s in the ring, he just looks at the entrance way and awaits his opponent, who he knows nothing about, but has intent on beating certain things out of them. 

My Demon begins to play and Jennie Felix, one of Fight’s newest competitors bursts from the black curtain and strikes several poses at the entrance way before making her way to the ring and sliding in. Jennie stands across from Korrupt and smiles in a way that unsettles his already unsettled demeanor.

The two wasted no time tearing into each other, Korrupt eager to put himself over this new comer, and this new comer, practically wrestling royalty if not be relation than by reputation. Had the entire roster not been locked up to curb the amount of unclean finishes as of late, then Druscilla would surely be out there supporting. But since she is, Jeanne Fenix has no choice but to make Dru proud in another way, by tearing the head off this masked weirdo, and bringing back to Dru on a silver platter.

Korrupt would try to use his speed and agility to take Fenix out, but the fact of the matter and it was indeed a matter of fact, she was just as fast and maybe a bit more agile. Reminding those in attendance of the barn burner that Dickie and Asher had put on recently, but this was way faster with way less at stake. There were bragging rights to be one, but not much. And there was reputations to maintain, but not much damage was possible. 

As the fight went on, there were several moments that would be utilized in highlight reels to come. None more so than the ending of the match, where Korrupt had gotten control of the match, and looking to put Fenix away, picked her up in an attempt to deliver a brain buster suplex in the center of the ring. Instead, Fenix rolled toward his head, placed her knees beneath his chin, and dropped him into a modified codebreaker, otherwise known as the Sirens Song. Korrupt was laid out and Fenix took full advantage of it, and got herself the three count.

WINNER BY PINFALL – JENNIE FENIX

Reach Out And Touch Someone

MAV looks at the monitor on his wall. On the screen is a 4×4 display of other fighters, including Ophelia, Atara Themis, Bam Miller, and JJ Starfire.

MAV: So I mean, do those of us with no ties to anyone just get left out?

Atara: Surely they have some sort of plan. I have only just arrived, I can’t be expected to be left off of a massive card like this because I’ve not rushed to make friends.

Bam Miller: All I know is that they can not invite me all they like, I’m showing up.

Ophelia Pain: MAV, why don’t you worry less about Ascension and more about not getting straight LACED tonight by yours truly?

MAV: Oh is it that time already?

Ophelia: For us to fight? Almost.

MAV: I mean your time of the month.

The group scoffs at the joke and MAV celebrates their disgust with a grin. He almost doesn’t hear the sound of the door begin banged on. And then it becomes so loud he can’t ignore. He walks over to the access point on the inside, and scans his card, only for no sound or change in lighting to occur. MAV looks back at the screen and sees the rest of them arguing, except for Ophelia. 

MAV: Houston Street, we have a problem.

Atara: I believe it’s pronounced HOUSE-TON, dove.

Got That Double Vision

When Le’Andra Black walked into the Hearst building, she was all smiles despite her husband finding two of the largest members of security to be on her detail; with the loose black evening gown she wore, she felt like Darth Vader, all that would be needed was to have the “Imperial March” playing over the PA system.  In each hand she carried a gift bag, from where she had been shopping for Michelle and Brandon Moore’s son, Ezra.  She had convinced her husband, Xavier, to allow her in the building to see the baby since the whole place was on lockdown and walking around with escorts.

Everyone greeted her as she passed by, careful to keep a safe distance after having watched one unsuspecting Fight employee get swatted away as if the escort had been Dikembe Mutombo blocking a shot that left the man laying on the floor looking dazed and all he planned on doing was asking her if she wanted him to send up some buffalo wings since she always asked for them when she was in the building.  Le’Andra chastised her security detail but all they did was shrug their shoulders and tell her that they were just following orders.

In the elevator ride up, she told them that orders would be changed just as soon as they got upstairs and she would have them changed not to include knocking down one of the guys who worked at the concession stands.

The doors opened and Le’Andra started to step out, but one of the escorts held his hand up in front of her as the other one stepped out into the hallway and looked around, before he motioned for the both of them to come out.

Le’Andra Black: This is unacceptable.

Escort: It’s only while you’re in the building.

Le’Andra Black:  It’s not like I have a bounty on my head and the whole world is trying to cash in.

Without another word, Le’Andra strode off the elevator with a purpose, instead of stopping and chatting with her husband’s assistant like she usually does, she went straight for Xavier’s office, ignoring the woman as she called her name.

Le’Andra Black:  Really, Xavi… She said as she came through the door, her eyes landing on her husband sitting on the couch by the window.  She strode over to his desk and placed the bags on top before she turned and looked at him.  I am going to need you to tune down my escorts to about a 5 threat level, because the level 13 that you have them set on is way too high.  

X: But…

Le’Andra Black:  No buts, Xavi’.  One of them almost flattened Rico.  All he wanted to know was if I wanted my wings.  I will not have people scared to approach me while I am in this building…

X:  I…

Le’Andra Black:  Will talk to my Varangian Guards and tell them to stand down.  Le’Andra walked over to Xavier and slipped into his lap, straddling him.  Please, Xavi’, for me?

She leans in and kisses him, her tongue slipping into his mouth and dancing with his, as she ground herself into him slightly.  Xavier was a little slow to kiss her, but eventually he returned it.

Voice:  Ahem.  

From behind them “someone” cleared their throat, Le’Andra broke the kiss and turned around to find Xavier standing there by the bathroom door, sliding his cell phone back into his pocket.  She turned around and looked at the man she straddled with her eyes wide in near shock and she quickly got off his lap and then stood there looking back and forth at the two of them.

Xavier Black:  My wife doesn’t usually greet the new Fighters like that.  He walked over and took his wife in his arms only for her to push him away.

Le’Andra Black:  That was not funny, Xavi’.  She walked over to his desk and took a seat behind it, crossing her arms over her chest.  Her face showed an expression of being less than pleased.

Xavier Cross:  For a moment, I thought this place had one helluva sign on bonus.  He stood up.

Xavier Black:  I did tell you, the resemblance is uncanny.  He stuck his hand out to shake his doppelganger’s hand.  I’ll have my assistant set up an appointment with you to come in and talk more about where you see yourself in FIGHT, say 6 months, a year from now?

Xavier Cross:  Sounds like a plan.  He turned and looked at Le’Andra with a slight smile.  Ma’am, it was a pleasure to meet you today.  Mr. Black is a very lucky man.

With quick goodbyes he left and Xavier looked at his wife, she was not happy.  He walked around the desk, pulled her up and sat down and pulled her into his lap.

Le’Andra Black:  He looks just like you, Xavi.  

Xavier Black:  The way you were gyrating on him, I completely believe it.

Le’Andra Black:  I wonder…

Xavier Black:  If everything about us is identical?  He winked teasing her.

Le’Andra Black:  Trust me, love.  She smirked a little.  He’s pretty darn close.

Be Smart, Not Just Pretty

Miss F rounds a corner and finds FIght Tech Staff standing in the hall, a panel that we could not tell was there is being exposed, and three men are looking over spec sheets and discussing what could have went wrong.

Miss F: Explain what I’m being told. You can’t get MAV out of his room?

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: Yes ma’am. I don’t know what happened, but the system has completely shut down. It’s not responding remotely or even here in person.

Miss F: How long?

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: Hard to say. Like I said, we can’t even find the cause to even try to fix it. I’m not seeing a lot of sense. The devices have power. It’s odd…but…

Miss F: Say it, Chris. You can’t just be pretty right now, you have to be smart.

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: The way the system works, when we scan our badges it sends a signal to the system to check if the door is set to go, as we say. Now, we can’t open it here, and we can’t open it there, which means maybe something got damaged in between?

Miss F: What could do that?

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: Hard to say. Wires can get snagged when we pull and then settle or fall, and if they fall against something like a smoke duct or what have you, they can get damaged. Hell, an animal might have gotten in the walls and pulled something out. We’re gonna send an optic up and see where its at. But it’s not looking good for tonight.

Miss F: Who else is this effecting?

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: Ophelia, that British kid who steals shit, and I think a few other rooms but this one and Ophelia’s are the only ones we can’t seem to get open manually.

Miss F: Good thing there isn’t a fire cooking them alive in there.

Tech Supervisor Chris Flores: I’m doing the best I can, ma’am. I didn’t design this system.

Miss F: Yes, it’s never your fault. Like the glass fucking door. Get them out of there!!

Miss F storms away leaving Mr. Flores to his task. She turns a corner and as she does, she blindly passes the locker room of Vhodka Black. Vhodka who is not on the show tonight, and who’s access light outside of the door is flickering steadily on and off.

Know A Guy

Dickie Watson sits, Empire Championship laid over his lap. On the other side of the locker room, his colleagues if you will, are preparing for their main event this evening.

Shawn Warstein: So when we win tonight, we’re going in as the defending champions I guess?

Betsy Granger: Are the belts on the line?

Shawn Warstein: We are the team to beat whether there is a trophy at stake or not.

Kasey is quiet, not facing them, hopping from one foot to the other, stretching out her shoulders. From across the room, finally Dickie Watson chimes in.

Dickie Watson: It’s five per team. Team to beat or not, we’re going to get picked off if we go in short-handed.

Shawn smirks, looking over his shoulder at Dickie. He briefly makes eye contact with Betsy, then focuses back on Dickie Watson.

Shawn Warstein: I got a guy. Don’t you even worry about it.

Dickie rolls his eyes, he knows exactly what that means. But that doesn’t fit DIckie’s MO.

Dickie Watson: Listen, I know what you’re thinking, but we need to turn over a new leaf. I have another plan. Go, win the belts. We’ll talk afterwards.

Shawn furrows his brow, not expecting Dickie’s answer.

Shawn Warstein: You want someone you trust, I’m fine with it. You got it. Kasey, you ready?

Kasey Winterborn: Now or never..

Shawn Warstein: Sister Mine?

Betsy Granger: Let me tell you, the belt really suits you, Shawn.

Back to ringside.

MDM vs Eoin O'Rourke

Eoin came out of the gate on this fight looking to destroy. The threat of having to carry what was in fact ‘the losers title’ around with him would motivate anyone. But if Eoin was looking for motivation he need only look to his teammate, Dollface Sarah Wolf. Who had been very clear that should he not fair well against Murphy, he would fair much worse against her after. Eoin knew the time that they would come to blows would be soon, the way she’d wormed her way into the Cure, and climbed the ranks so fast. Apathy could trust her all she wanted, but she was a direct relative of the very thing they had sworn to remove from this business. And now rather than trim it, they’ve allowed it to grow on them. Either they would be strangled by it, or it would be strangled by them.

But for now, He’d had taken her warning silently. If only to make it sweeter when he took her audacity and forced it back down into her throat at a later date. Eoin started the match off strong, catching Murphy with his massive hands and beating him back into a corner. An Irish whip later, and Murphy was laid out on the mat, after he bounced out of the turnbuckle, and wobbled into a stiff kick from Eoin.  As he laid there, he reached over to Eoin’s foot, and when he grabbed his ankle, Eoin lifted his leg and stopped down on his hand. Murphy used his other hand to grab Eoin’s foot, and held it into place on top of his. Murphy screamed and begin to call out. Eoin, shocked by this behavior pulls his foot away from Murphy, and backs off. Murphy stands up and darts toward him. Wrapping his arms around him, and as soon as Eoin reaches down to touch Murphy in any way, Murphy begins to yell, and almost taps out, unbeknownst to Eoin, who pushes him away, again just as Murphy intended to start slapping his thigh.

And so it went. Murphy, who at this point was absolutely intent on tapping out to end their match as soon as possible, and Eoin, who didn’t understand at all what was occurring, and would constantly continue the fight by ruining the efforts of Murph at every chance. Instead dealing out damaging hit after damaging hit but not once looking to end it anytime soon. Almost as if his entire goal was to hurt Murphy as much as possible. But then…

Perhaps it was the slap to the face that did it, or the smile on Eoin’s face, or the statement he made in between the two that did it, but at some point Murphy Doyle Maher, the untouchable happy guy, suddenly became enraged. Rights and lefts stormed the head of Eoin as Murphy’s hands cut the air like a samurai sword, complete with an audible slice of the air around them. Followed by a kick to the gut, Murphy leaped into the air, and as he came down placed his leg on the back of Eoin’s head, driving him into the mats. As Eoin came down, he pulled his hands away from his stomach and tried to block the move, but instead ended up landing on his own fists, essentially punching himself in the face on impact.

Eoin laid there motionless. And Murphy looked at the man with disbelief in his eyes. What had he done? His bonus as champion. His kids tuition. How was he to pay for it if he pinned him? He could see the ref in the booth above the ring looking down, and knew he only had about 7 more seconds before they’d call the match on account of KO. And that’s when it hit him.

Murphy scrambled to his feet, and grabbed Eoin by the ankles, turning him onto his back. Murphy quickly locked in a figure four leg lock, and the second he fell to the mat, he rocked from side to side, and reversed the move himself. The crowd erupts with laughter as the scroll at the bottom of the screen reads ‘QUEENS CHAMP 4 LIFE.’ Murphy frantically taps out and after a beat, probably from the ref laughing too hard in the booth, the match is officially called. 

Winner by Submission, Eoin O’Rourke

Murphy stood up, grabbed his title and held it aloft above his head, as the announcement was made…

AND STILL QUEENS CHAMPION…MURPHY DOYLE MAHER!

Eoin comes to, and as he stands up, Murphy and him begin to exchange words, looking as if they are about to have a rematch right here and now. Murphy drops his belt and pushes Eoin. Eoin is about to return the favor when ‘When I am queen’ by Jackoff Jill begins to play, and the crowd boos at the very sight of Dollface.

Little Known Facts

Stepping up onto the apron, she glances at Eoin, and a snarl appears on both their faces. But she quickly turned to Murphy, who wasn’t smiling either. Sarah took a deep breath, and a very nice smile appeared across her face. And then her teeth showed, and the nice part about it vanished like the rest of her teeth had.

Sarah Wolf: Gotta say, buddy. It’s really nice to see you take so naturally to being ineffective. I had thought that was limited to the bedroom, but alas, it is the case with in-ring ability as well. I gave very specific instructions on what I wanted to see out here tonight. Instructions that I expected to be followed. Of course, like most men, Eoin has a problem listening to women that he doesn’t want to fuck. So I guess it’s true what they say. Behind every powerful woman is a piece of shit calling her a cunt for existing.

MDM: ..the fuck point of ‘ll this?

Sarah Wolf: The point, lover boy, is this; You’re not cut out for here. You belong in the boonies with the farmers, and the dungaree jackets, like where you found your girl Sahara. This is the big time. And you are exactly what you say you are. The best of the worst.

MDM: You just want me gone because of Ascension. You dun wan’ me ruining yeh chances.

Sarah Wolf: Ruining my…sweetie your very involvement increases my chances. You and those half assed halfwits that make up ‘fawk yew awl’ are not roadblocks to the top. You’re not even detours. You’re speed bumps, and we’ve got great shocks.

MDM: …you like shocks, do yeh? How’s about ones to yeh system?

The crowd fucking erupts as a guitar riff plays behind a genderless voice repeating ‘he’s not coming, is he?’ over and over, until the riff breaks, silence takes hold, and another voice says ‘He is here.’ Die MF Die by Dope begins and out from the entrance way steps Kal X Wolf. His famous red bandana around his forehead, he slams his fist against the front of his plain black shirt, and then he raises one fist into the air, and an explosion of pyro goes off around him. When he slams the arm down against his side, a larger explosion erupts, and propels Kal forward. Sarah looks incensed at the appearance of her old brother, and turns to Murphy, cursing him out with all she’s got.

Kal rolls into the ring, and pushes past Sarah and Eoin, and stands in the corner of the ring, looking down on the Fight audience, and pointing at Damon in the announcer booth. The two do a ‘fist bang to the chest and point’ thing that guys their age do, and Kal jumps down, and walks up to Sarah, and snatches the mic from her hand.

Kal X Wolf: What the fuck are we on about, New York!?

The cheapest and loudest pop of the night are both heard, as Kal smiles, takes a drag off his weed pen, and exhales the dust in Eoin’s direction.

Kal X Wolf: In the words of Aaron fucking Lewis, It’s been a fucking while. And shit has changed, ya’mean? Those of us who fucking ran this game have all but been put out to pasture, with the younger of us taking the reins. Pulling the big show. Guys like Brandon Moore, Paul Montouri, and of course, The first ever Empire Champion, Dickie Watson. But the more things change, fuck. The more they stay the same. Look around. You got a stable of established but young guns, Commonwealth or whatever. You got a team built up of the best of the best that the business has. When I was in it to fucking win it, it was Focus. It still is, fucking ask me. You got the dark powers, the shadowy mother fuckers. Used to H8 Club, or fucking…what was that group, The Blood or someshit? Now you got The Cure. Fuck you guys are curing but you do it well. And then you got them fucking underdogs. The ones what everyone thinks don’t fit in so good. The FYA. Little known fucking fact, I started that group. No? Not little known? You know why? Because we didn’t just come together with the fuckin thought, lets put our name on the map. Fuckin we did what we did to put the map to rights. To set shit up the way we saws it. And now, it’s time for that to fucking happen again. Only this time, it won’t be me leading. It’ll be Dane Preston, followed swiftly by Murphy Doyle Maher, Allison Riggs Preston, Sahara…and fucking yeah. Me.

The crowd explodes as Kal takes his shirt off, revealing it was an FYA shirt inside out the entire time. He blows a kiss to Sarah who looks like she’s going to try and tear someone’s face off very soon.

MDM: Yeh see, dear. Yeh may have the numbers. But I have teh family. And like Vin Diesel himself says…Family is everything.

Kal X Wolf: And this family is gonna leave you and yours in the cure…say it for me, New York!

BRUISED

BLOODY

BATTERED

AND BEATEN!!!

 

Sarah and Eoin march out of the ring, as Murphy and FYA’s newest (and oldest) member stand in the ring, celebrating the return of The Main Man. Sarah stops at the entrance way, and her face shakes with rage as she finally leaves the sight of the ring, and the terrible sight within it.

The Art of War

Sarah Wolf pulls off her boot and thrashes it against a locker, it clatters against it and drops to the floor. Eoin follows behind, trying to calm the Doll.

Eoin O’Rourke: Why does it make a difference? Our plan remains the same.

Sarah Wolf: Why would you understand?

Then Korrupt appears, followed quickly by Apathy. They’re business-mode, and the topic quickly shifts to the announcement of Ascension.

Apathy: FYA have filled out their team.

Korrupt: And the new kids.. They gonna be fishing. They dont have enough friends yet

Enforcer shows up and then slightly behind him, with four security guards, is Brandon Moore. He looks aggressively at the guards.

Brandon Moore: C’mon man I’m not gonna lay out these guys. Just let it be.

Apathy turns to face the latecomers.

Apathy: Since Blood Money we have been united, unified by a common thread of sparking chaos and setting fire to what everyone else holds dear. Why? Because they’re naive, and stupid, and don’t see the world for what it really is — Sick. Brandon, Enforcer, whether you wish to formally wear the colors or simply fight at our side and uphold our ideals through the mettle of your own fists, you have both proven yourselves worthy. I’d like to invite you to be part of the team that will Ascend.

Apathy reaches out a hand, and The Enforcer grabs hold of it, shaking firmly. Brandon hesitates a moment, leaving her hand in the air.

Brandon Moore: Look, the reality is that we got common objectives, common enemies. Those new fucks who think they gonna turn up and take over, the Montuori brothers who think they too good for me, Preston and his mook clones. Too many battles on too many fronts to go it alone, but you better believe that if a better offer came along we wouldn’t be havin’ this conversation.

Apathy’s demeanor shifts.

Brandon Moore: I’m here for the Empire Championship. I’ll destroy anyone else in my path on the way, and if it comes to it, you ain’t excluded. If I’m in, I’m steerin’ the ship. Ain’t no question. And if I ain’t?

Brandon Moore looks at the other five people in the room.

Apathy: Let me make this easy for you, Moore.

She steps forward.

Apathy: This is a match where teamwork is paramount, where dominance is achieved by working together, by being aligned, by pulling your share of weight. So if you’re falling short on any of those, I have no interest in you being in the team.

Brandon’s demeanor now shifts.

Brandon Moore: If you-

Brandon Moore is cut short, as Apathy raises her left hand in the air. Eoin O’Rourke grabs Korrupt from behind in a sleeper hold, thrusting his forearm into his throat aggressively. As he thrashes around, Apathy turns away from Moore and towards Korrupt.

Apathy: There is one of us who does not pull his weight, does not fly our flag with pride, there is one who phones it in week after week and shows the Cure to be weak. The Cure is not weak and we will no longer suffer fools.

O’Rourke drops him, and Brandon Moore’s security detail stops flustering about whether to intervene or not.

Apathy: Mr. Moore, let’s plant our flag at the top of this tower. Eoin, if the masked one so much as gets within spitting distance of FIGHT! Tower, you can finish the job.

Hu(ngry)man (un)resource(ful)

Vincent Black sits in his office, going over file after file of inappropriate behavior committed either by or against a Fight employee. And most of the time it is both. His head pounding from the weight of other peoples problems, he is almost welcoming to the knock at the door.

Vincent Black: Come in.

Miss F: Hey Vincenz. I thought I’d bring you some lunch since the last time you left the office for lunch it extended to an entire day. It’s the brand new ProTier chicken burger with ProTier’s exclusive Gluten free Protein bun, and vegetable fake-en. Even threw in a side of the Guiltless Crisps, also made exclusively of ProTier’s protein flour, to satisfy that call for salt we all get once in a while. 

Vincent looks up into the corner of the room at the OCCHI system eye that is looking down upon them. He sighs loudly, and nods at the tray of food, knowing damn well what has occured downstairs even though he isn’t watching.

Vincent Black: ..Kal is back.

Miss F: He is.

Vincent Black: And I’m supposed to believe my brother didn’t swap out all of this to fuck with me?

Miss F: You are.

Vincent Black: …I’m hungry.

Miss F: By the way, your brother joined FYA. Looks like you got a decision to make. Any chance I can coax it out of you?

Vincent Black: You could try, but my wife would kill you and I’d help her hide it.

Miss F: Ok, so enjoy your lunch then. HR shouldn’t be threatening people by the by. See you later.

As soon as Miss F leaves, Vin grabs his cell phone and calls out to Siri, asking her to call ‘My boyfriend.’ The phone rings, and the OCCHI signal dies.

Noelle Rivers vs Atara Themis

‘Hello Doves’ echoes all around Fight arena, as Atara Themis storms out of the gateway, and charges the ring with Noelle already inside it. There is barely a moment between Atara entering and the match beginning, as she wastes no time grabbing the young member of the unofficial Fetal Four, and locks up with her quickly. The two women struggle against each other until Atara uses all of her strength to move Noelle into the corner. Atara slowly raises both of her hands and lets Noelle out of her grasp, but follows up with a devastating elbow to the chest. Noelle with all of the air knocked out of her, embraces her chest with one hand while gripping the top rope and following it out of the corner.

The match would be decidedly Atara’s, as despite Noelle putting forth her best effort to date, Atara wasn’t here to play practice, and Noelle obviously needed a lot more of it. The match would go back and forth in the exact way you’d expect. Atara, a name to be reckoned with in the fight game, against an untested, unproven entity such as Noelle. Despite the lack of experience, Noelle did her best to attempt to get Atara off balance. Unpredictable and wild like a feral cat, Noelle struck out at Atara when the well established star expected it least, often getting incredibly close to changing the tides of the fight, but not having the experience to close it out. At one point, Atara who seemingly had enough, grabbed Noelle by the sides of her forehead, and launched her up and over the top rope, sending her sprawling to the floor below in some sort of assisted swan dive. Slowly getting back to her feet, she barely steadies herself before Atara runs the length of the apron kicks her in the head, staggering her back to the divider wall. She stumbles away from it, and Atara leaps off, drop kicking in the side and sending her for a slide that ends with a thud in the steps.

The match continues on this way for some time, until Atara sees it. That foggy look in the eyes that the good ones know to look for, and the best ones know how to create. Atara pushes her hair behind her head, raises one arm into the air, and charges forward, a primal scream emits and she delivers Judgement Of Paris to Noelle, knocking her ass over tea kettle. Rolling her over, Atara hooks the leg albeit for no reason, and secures the three count.

WINNER BY PINFALL, ATARA THEMIS

Company Policy

Vincent Black was not a man who was built to sit behind a desk. As a matter of fact, the number of things that Vincent Black was built for amounted to what was a very small list of various niches. Singing, painting, writing and of course the thing he was most fit for, violence. Vincent Black did not do paperwork; Vincent Black did not answer phones and Vincent Black most certainly did not do intrapersonal skills. On the paper in front of him is a small piece of lead from the number two pencil gripped like an ice pick in his hand, his eyes cloud over with what can only be described as near perfect rage as he looks at the small piece of lead resting on the paper where it ought not to be and then the tip of the pencil where it should be but is not. Dust sifts down to float through the air like a sudden snow flurry to land among the items on the desk in front of him only a moment before the ceiling gives way and the body of his wife lands with a thud on the desk, only narrowly missing being impaled by the pencil held in Vincent’s hand. Vhodka casually dusts herself off, swinging her legs over the desk to face her husband who releases the pencil in his grip in favor of her thighs.

Vhodka Black: Hiya Mr. Black.

Vincent Black: I wasn’t expecting take out but I could eat.

Vhodka Black: Thought you might be bored. Also, I was bored.

Vincent Black: Not that I’m not happy to see you but

Vhodka Black: Why was I in the ceiling?

Vincent Black: Mmhm.

Vhodka Black: These weird guys keep following me around every time I try to leave our room. I think one of them stole my watch.

Vincent Black: You don’t wear a watch.

Vhodka Black: Well, I don’t now that he stole it. Hey, now that you’re HR you can pretty much do, like, anything right?

Vincent Black: What did you have in mind?

Vhodka Black: Can you fire your ex-wife for me?

Vincent Black: I could. But I won’t. We have children that will one day need college educations.

Vhodka Black: Ugh. Lame.

Vhodka and Vincent’s head snap to the sound of a commotion in the hallway moments before Vhodka drops down underneath Vincent’s desk obscuring herself from view just in time for what was presumably her security detail to enter the room. Vincent stares at the uniformed man before him as the other man struggles to ask this very unapproachable man about his very uncontainable wife.

Security: Don’t suppose you’ve had any contact with Mrs. Black?

The group of guards looks the small office over, stopping on the person sized hole in the ceiling directly above Vincent. Vincent smiles suddenly, or as much as that man is able to, and shakes his head.

Vincent Black: Loads of contact with Mrs. Black. But none that I’d like to tell you about. Stand down. 

Against their better judgement they retreat, closing the office door quietly behind them as Vincent looks down at his lap, smiling down at his wife who by that point had found a very specific way to alleviate her boredom. 

Vincent Black: I think that’s against company policy.

Druscilla White vs Anne Boleyn

No one knew quite what to expect when Anne Boleyn regally stepped between the FIGHT ropes for the very first time. There were rumors, of course. Rumors that she was a bloodthirsty zombie, rumors that she likes pineapple on pizza and even worse, rumors that she was… untrained. None of this mattered in the slightest to Druscilla White who had come here to do as she had done in so many other places: dominate. The faction war was bubbling just below the surface of her mind as she and her opponent traded shots in the center of the ring. Today she and Anne found themselves on opposite sides of the battle, next week would they find themselves shoulder to shoulder as two women who were generals without an army so to speak in a place lousy with war? Dru would have liked to postulate on it but instead was jolted from her own thoughts by the impact of the snap mere take down employed by Boleyn, a technique presumably taught to her by a young stable boy for those nights when Henry didn’t believe that she truly had a headache. 

Dru took it in stride like the veteran of the ring she’s proven herself to be, turning the tide with a vicious super kick to Boleyn’s face that damn near took her head off for a second time. Boleyn must have had a terrible flashback to that other time with the head as she went down like the newly dead but did not rise again in time to miss the ref’s three count. Boleyn was rolled out of the ring to collect her thoughts as Dru enjoyed what was to be a short lived victory, turning around just in time to receive a face full of black goo courtesy of Sarah Wolf who was in a particularly bad mood by this point of the night. Dru bent at the waist clawing at her eyes trying desperately to clear her vision as Sarah stalked the other woman like a tender morsel she was thinking of chewing on for a while. Sarah lunged forward toward Dru but found herself clawing at the air where she had stood only moments before. From the floor Vhodka Black smiles up at her sister-in-laws enraged face, cradling the disorientated Druscilla to her side as security descends the ramp and Sarah Wolf disappears through the crowd.

H(yUo)MAN (aRe)ESO(Underhanded)RCES

Vincent Black sits in his office in Human Relations, looking out the window at the night sky, a phone to his ear and his feet up on the window sill. His shoulder stuck in a sling and his mind stuck in a loop of a short chubby man complaining about how he’s going to take matters into his own hands.

Vincent Black: Steven. You can not booby trap the coffee machine. I understand that it’s annoying that they leave their pods in the device, but that isn’t reason enough to hurt someone, can’t believe I’m saying this.

Steven: But it’s my kuerig! I bought it and it’s in my office!

Vin Black: Oh, I’m sorry. Yea, go ahead. Blow them up, i don’t give a fuck.

Vincent hangs up the phone just as the door opens, and he sees Sarah Wolf, his, well, nothing at all anymore.

Sarah Wolf: Hey bro-bro. How goes it?

Vin Black: What are you doing out of your cell?

Sarah Wolf: Can’t deny me the right to talk to HR. And since you are HR, here we are.

Vin Black: Is this a formal complaint?

Sarah Wolf: No, not a complaint at all. In fact, I’d say in my best TikTok voice, it’s like a reward.

Vin Black: Cunt, you have precisely three seconds to-

Sarah Wolf: I wanted to put you in the ground. I wanted to put you so far beneath the earth that not even the stench of your fuckin corpse would ever be found. I wanted to be rid of you forever and a day. And I failed, Obviously. But, I see you here in this office, ineffective as ever, and all I can say is it’s so good to see you in pain rather than dead. Isn’t it funny how that works?

Vin Black: I am of a different mind on such things.

Sarah Wolf: Really I stopped by to see if you still have your old sweaters. You know the ones I mean, the one you wore when you were stuck in Kal’s shadow? Seeing as you’re going to need them again, since he’s back to being active and you’re all beat up and what not.

Vin Black: You’re more upset about this than I am.

Sarah Wolf: How do you figure?

Vin Black: Because, you cunt, who do you think signed him?

Sarah snarls, looks at her brothers burgeoning smile, and grabs a coffee mug from the desk and chucks it at his injured arm. He deflects it with his good arm, and smiles as Sarah rushes out of the room, cursing at her guards to keep up. Vincent picks up a pencil from the table that used to sit in a cup, and pushes it into the sharpener. His hand shakes at the force he’s pushing it with and his face tells the tale of what he wishes he were actually doing.

Tension Rising

Miss F sits in her office, the wall ahead of her full of Fighters asking questions all at once, and with little regard to anyone else asking anything else. Druscilla White is at the forefront, a snarl on her face.

Druscilla White: Look, if you think you’re going to have your showpiece season finale and exclude some of your best and most well-known faces from it, you’re setting yourself up to fail. Which is disappointing, becuase after Blood Money, and Toxic Tag, there’s so much hype… only for it to be such a let do-

Miss F looks at her phone, and sees Xavier has sent a thumbs up. She breaths a sigh and her body tension subsides for a moment as she unmutes her microphone, mutes everyone else’s, and stands up, pacing the room as she speaks.

Miss F: I have been given the go ahead to reveal to you what our plan is for those of you outside of the respective established groups. But I won’t be doing it from here. Rest assured there is a spot for you in Ascension Night 2. But what that position is, will be entirely up to you.

Sleep Tight

The thing about this business is that you never quite know when you might be needed. It’s why so often you’d see random people who weren’t on the card milling around the backstage area apparently just collecting a free check for an easy day’s work. VooDoo had not been booked on this show, or the last for that matter, but she knew how the business worked and had reported to her suite for lockdown without a fuss which was pretty spectacular considering all the arranging she had to do to the children’s schedule to make this possible. Though considering she might be at least…. somewhat to blame for the lockdown she figured it was better to go quietly than to remind the powers that be how much destruction The Matriarchs had wrought on this very nice, very new tower already in the short few weeks it’s been the home of FIGHT!

She had watched television, she had scrolled mindlessly through her phone, she’d paced the small suite, yet the door sensor never changed from red to green. It looked like her presence here the last twenty four hours was for nothing, might as well take a nap before the late flight back to Parts Unknown and her children. As she settled into the plush bed in her suite and switched the bedside lamp on she tried as well to switch off her mind. Her life lately has been, well, interesting to say the least. There was Roger with his proposal, not A proposal but THE proposal, the one about moving herself and her children into a home with him. The one about her and Roger becoming..becoming… she couldn’t even bring herself to formulate the word in her own mind, instead she only thrashed around in the suddenly scratchy sheets. At first she thought she was imagining things, the slight tickle along her bare feet, the itchy spot on the back of her arm. But then it kept happening, the feeling of something crawling along her legs as she jerked up right and threw the blankets off of her body to lay discarded on the floor below. If she was anyone else but who she was and if this tower was anything else than what it was she might have thought she was hallucinating the seemingly hundreds of insects crawling over her body. But she wasn’t and it was and she knew without a doubt the only person depraved enough to do something like this was no doubt also locked somewhere in this very tower as well. 

VooDoo leaps from her bed frantically swatting the bugs away from herself until deciding that stripping off her clothes would be faster and more effective than trying to pick off the insects. As she reached a hand down to throw the blankets back on the bed she noticed it, the corner of a slip of paper sticking out from under the bed frame. Carefully she knelt down peering under the bed before she produced an open box and the aforementioned letter. Her face contorted as she read the words out loud 

Sleep tight and don’t let the bedbugs bite.

The F is for Facts

Miss F appears on every monitor in the tower, including the massive one above the ring. She smiles, and holds out her hand. In the palm of her well lotioned, tanned, and manicured hand is that of a red pill, and a blue pill.

Miss F: We here at fight believe choices are important, no matter of the person or affiliation. That is why, for those of our fighters who are not yet held to an official grouping, we have a choice for you to make. Take the blue pill, metaphorically, and you will be placed into a group of other blues who wish to form a temporary stable to join the fray and try to split that prize money amongst yourselves.

Or take the red pill. And introduce a little bit of Anarchy into the fray. Instead of being a group, you will be tasked as individuals. On each superstar’s head will be a price. Eliminate that person and gain that amount in blood money for you, and only you. Will you work with each other, or set your sights on individual glory only. For, or against, the choice is yours. And the time to make it is fast approaching.

Joe Montuori, Allison Riggs-Preston & Dane Preston vs Shawn Warstein, Kasey Winterborn & Betsy Granger

FIGHT! NYC Islands Championship

Dane Preston, his wife Allison, and the man that was his worst nemesis, Joe Montuori stood uneasily in the ring next to one another, each with an Islands Belt in their hand.

Over the past 3 months, Joe had abused his powers in the mudshow from where they came to sign another man’s wife into a tag team match with him. She’d gone along with it because she is a consummate professional. But in time his efforts had been rewarded, because he’d pressed enough buttons and flipped enough switches that he made Dane Preston blow his lid and he’d driven a wedge between a man and his wife.

For Allison’s part, she’d been in bed with both of her partners and she was sick to the pits of her stomach of being stuck in the middle. She wanted nothing to do with Joe, and if there was to be any future with Dane then there would be a long road ahead. But they stood here, determined to see it through to its conclusion.

On the other side of the ring, a more unified unit. There had been no strange bedswapping, no blurred lines and boundaries crossed. Betsy and Shawn were like siblings, and she was with his best friend. Kasey and Shawn were fairly recently together and still very much in the honeymoon period – no danger of wandering eyes.

And for all of their parts, they knew this was their opportunity to put their own flag in the ground. They shared a locker room with Dickie Watson, the Empire Champion, who had been the man on the day when it all mattered and managed to capture the highest prize in the game. They were the new kids, so-to-speak. Coming into an already established strata, wanting to stake their claim just as their fourth partner had.

They were outsiders. Almost everyone else in the FIGHT! Locker Room had more than fifteen years, for all the good and bad. And that meant that they hated each other in a way that Warstein, Winterborn and Granger just couldn’t, and had bonds that couldn’t be broken either. It was going to take time to break in, to be accepted, to be part of the fabric. But it would be much easier if they had some weight behind their words.

So as Warstein circled Preston, that’s the thought process. Warstein got the early upper hand, and on the outside Joe Montuori found himself laughing loudly as Warstein landed each move. A quick tag in to Kasey Winterborn saw her take control with a running knee strike and Allison Riggs-Preston had to dive through the ropes to make the save despite being on the opposite side to Joe Montuori who was much closer to the pinfall attempt.

Allison chastised JMont, who threw his hand up and said he isn’t a cheater.

Betsy gets her turn in the ring after a swift tag from Kasey and the trio of challengers continue to show good momentum, as Betsy chained together a series of maneuvers culminating in a thundering rendition of Galactic Advantage… 

One.. Two.. Allison, again.

This time, the ring floods. Warstein and Kasey stream in, and chase Allison down. Joe Montuori on the other hand is on the outside, not getting involved. Dane struggles to his feet, and Joe makes it as difficult as possible for him as Betsy returns to being the only one in the opposition’s team in the ring, and eventually Joe Montuori is tagged in against his will.

The former Manhattan Champion isn’t afraid of a fight, but he does want to make sure his future opponent, Dane Preston, takes as much punishment as is absolutely possible. He does, however, care greatly for the championships that he holds, and so he fights back. A few jabs of his own, before grabbing a high crotch on Betsy and dumping her on her back. He laughs out loud, points at Dane Preston who’s a mess in his corner, and then at Allison Riggs-Preston, who was just getting back to her feet after being dumped out by the challengers.

Joe Montuori: You fucks, I’ll carry you to victory!

Montuori cackles, but he missed a tag, and then new legal competitor Kasey Winterborn getting in the ring and hitting a snap backstabber, and making a quick cover. She is close, but he managed to kick out on his own steam. He was furious as he returned to his feet, but she springboarded from the middle rope, flipped in the air, and hit a moonsault cross body.

And thus the cycle repeated. With every glimmer of hope, their teamwork would falter, and the better teamwork of the challengers showed through. Dane Preston wouldn’t tag Joe Montuori. Joe Montuori wouldn’t tag Dane. Allison was the conduit, as always. And each of the three of them took their licks.

It would go through several iterations and several close falls, with Warstein & Co beginning to lose their patience as they couldn’t get the job done. As Allison Riggs-Preston recovered in the corner from her own slice of the beatdown, Dane Preston reached out for Joe Montuor to tag him in, but Montuori pushed himself around the turnbuckle, making himself further away. Allison grabbed the wrist of Montuori and thrust it into Dane’s reach, but she made sure both men heard her.

Allison Riggs-Preston: You know what? You two are going to cost these belts for us, you keep going.

Maybe this was a catalyst? A peptalk that they needed. Joe Montuori entered the ring, grabbed hold of Warstein and started driving elbows into his skull. He made a quick tag to, you guessed it, Allie. And then she drove Warstein into the mat with a headlock takedown and started working him over with ground wrestling techniques.

She reached back and tagged Joe back in, then followed by Dane. Fluid work from the champions, and just as Dane had Warstein all set up, he ran at him ready for the ONE SHOT KILL, as Kasey dived into the ring and intercepted Shawn, pulling him out of danger. Betsy slapped Shawn’s shoulder, entering herself into the fray.

Joe Montuori stands opposite Betsy, Betsy smirks at him as he’s jawing away at her and at Kasey.

Betsy Granger: You wanna shut him up, or should I?

Kasey doesnt even answer, she slaps herself in, and as she steps through the ropes, Joe bulrushes her. He’s starting to overwhelm her, and he is laughing his head off again.

Joe Montuori: My darling Allie, the pleasure’s all mine for keeping these belts. Do me the final honor of finishing it off..

He goes to tag Allie, but she sticks her boot through the ropes and drives it into his nuts.

Is having a gold belt worth it? Putting up with his incessant Montuori-ness?

Dane Preston’s lips draw into a wide smirk, and he climbs in the ring and lifts the chin of his partner who had been doubled over. ONE. SHOT. KILL.

Montuori staggers back, as Dane and Allison slide out of the ring.

Kasey lays in wait, coming off the rope with a slingblade. She laces Montuori’s legs..

WICKED LITTLE MACHINE

Montuori is tied up in the middle of the ring with nobody to save him. Kasey Winterborn’s got him in her Wicked Little Machine…

Joe Montuori… is… tapping out!!!

WINNERS, NEW FIGHT! NYC ISLANDS CHAMPIONS – KASEY WINTERBORN, BETSY GRANGER AND SHAWN WARSTEIN!

Aftermath

As the bell rings, and Dane Preston and Allison Riggs-Preston look on from the ramp as Joe Montuori takes the pinfall for the championships that they essentially forfeit, another familiar face appears at ringside.

The FIGHT! NYC Empire Champion, Dickie Watson, flanked by two security guards is at ringside. He slides under the bottom rope, looks around at the crowd inside FIGHT! Tower, and then looked at his colleagues who are all now wearing gold.

He shakes hands with Warstein, hugs Betsy and hugs Kasey.

They wanted to make an impression? Done.

They wanted to show that they mean business? Done. Isn’t that derivative? Whatever.

The four of them stood. Kasey, Shawn, Dickie, Betsy. All four titles held in the air.

Damon Riggs was screeching.

Damon Riggs: This is a new era. Look at them! They came, they saw, they’ve conquered! You might not like how the job got done but I believe that on any given day it’d take an army to stop them now! It is undeniable, FIGHT! NYC has a

 

NEW STATUS QUO

 

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