EDDIE CROSS vs. JONATHAN-CHRISTOPHER HALL vs. ROCKY DE LEON
We then cut from Vickie Hall to ringside… where we are moments away from seeing Vickie Hall again.
Nick Stuart: The triple threat action continues into our next match this evening, ladies and gentlemen. Here shortly, we will witness the trio of Rocky De Leon, Eddie Cross, and Jonathan-Christopher Hall of LOVE CONVOY battle for a chance at a step up in the competitive ladder.
Richard Parker: Practically everyone in the PRIME locker room is looking to bounce back after the Culture Shock battle royal, Nick. I doubt these three are any different. But there’s a lot of youth and inexperience going into that ring, and that usually makes for some interesting learning curves.
Nick Stuart: I’m inclined to agree, partner. Let’s head down to the ring now, where our man Vince is ready for the introductions.
“Me and Julio Down by The Schoolyard” by Streetlight Manifesto comes in over the PA. Rocky De Leon appears on the stage beneath an array of lights, looking confident and eager for action. As the trumpets play, he marches to the ring. Stu Weiler follows after him with his laptop in hand.
Vince Howard: Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is a triple threat match schedule for one fall! Introducing first, accompanied to the ring by Stu Weiler… he hails from Laredo, Texas, and weighs in at two-hundred and fifteen pounds… THE EFF-DEE-PEE… ROCKY DE LEEEOOONNN!!
Rocky comes down the ramp to the ring hyping up the crowd with every step. Shortly after hopping into the ring, he springs to the top turnbuckle and spreads his wings with a mighty SKREEEEE! Stu Weiler takes his post at his corner and sets up his laptop.
The wailing Aerosmith ballad “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” replaces the music, and the GROAN from the capacity crowd is practically booming as Vickie and Jonathan-Christopher Hall come out on the stage, lit up by a heart-shaped spotlight.
Vince Howard: Now approaching the ring, accompanied by his Amazing Life Partner, Vickie Hall… hailing from Folsom, Louisiana, and weighing in at two-hundred and twenty pounds… representing the LOVE CONVOY… the VOW of VIRTUE… JONATHAN-CHRISTOPHER HAAALLLLLL!!
Hand-in-hand, absolutely incapable of looking away from each other, the Amazing Life Partners stroll down the aisle toward the ring. They completely ignore the jeering crowd beyond the barricades. There is nothing else in the world except for the two of them. She pecks him on the lips with a final kiss for luck just before the Timid Tiger steps through the ropes to enter the ring.
Match Start in 10…9…8…7…6…5…4…
– Eliminate Other Players –
ISIS (ADHD) by Joyner Lucas (feat Logic) begins, and the arena lights focus on the entry. As Joyner Lucas rhymes Eddie “n1ghtcraw1er” Cross steps out of the back. He adjusts his custom gaming glasses before walking down the ramp focused on the ring. He pauses at the ring steps, taking off his backpack, unzipping the main compartment, and placing it in the corner of the ring. He waits for the transition between verses before psyching himself up. Vince Howard is waiting.
Vince Howard: And finally, accompanied to the ring by Dave Gibson… hailing from from Charlotte, North Carolina by way of Orlando, Florida, and weighing in at two-hundred and twenty-five pounds… EDDIE “N1GHTCRAW1ER” CROOOSSSSSS!!
Eddie folds his glasses and puts them in the corner by his backpack, where Dave Gibson has posted up. He then runs up the ring steps, wipes his feet on the apron, and enters the ring.
Off the bell, the three come out of their corners and tensely look among each other. Jonathan-Christopher Hall to Rocky De Leon. Rocky to Eddie Cross. Eddie to Hall. Hall to Rocky. Rocky to Hall. Hall back to Eddie. Eddie, still on Hall. Rocky, still on Hall.
Jonathan-Christopher deflates when he realizes what’s happening, and can only cover up as the other pounce on him from either side, barraging him with stereo flurries of kicks and chops. The fans approvingly cheer!
Nick Stuart: Eddie and Rocky quickly find themselves on the same page in the opening seconds of this match, taking it to the co-founder of the much-reviled LOVE CONVOY!
Richard Parker: Well obviously, having the power of LOVE on his side makes him the greatest threat in the ring right now. I’m sure Dave and Stu told them as much.
JCH ping-pongs uncontrollably between either man before a standing dropkick from Rocky sends him into the far corner. Eddie steps in to push him out before setting himself and dropping the Timid Tiger with a Flying Knee Strike!
Nick Stuart: Trigger Warning by Eddie Cross, and he makes the pin!
Two–No! Broken up by Rocky De Leon, who tags Cross on the back of the head with an elbow drop!
At ringside, Dave Gibson groans in dismay, while Stu Weiler commends the FDP’s quick thinking. For her own part, Vickie offers “encouragement” to her ALP by incessantly shrieking in distress. Rocky leaves Cross to recover as he quickly steps out to the apron. Gibson calls for EC to look sharp, and the N1GHTCRAW1ER looks up in time to see Rocky springboarding off the top rope and flying back into the ring!
Nick Stuart: The FDP with the PTERICANRANA–NO! Eddie stuffs him at the last second right into a standing powerbomb, and folds him up to cover!
Rocky kicks out!
But Cross keeps ahold of the legs, and wraps Rocky De Leon into a Cloverleaf!
Nick Stuart: He’s got the Fool’s Gallows locked into place!
Richard Parker: Pretty gutsy, going for a submission attempt in a triple threat match.
Nick Stuart: Chalk it up to inexperience, unless Cross has something in mind here!
Cross torques the cloverleaf at a low position, putting more pressure on the legs than the back. Rocky’s face doesn’t need to be seen to know he’s in complete torture. His hands thrash across his mask-covered head as he fights through the pain. Outside the ring, Stu beckons him to make a go at the ropes, but counteracting this, Gibson urges his own student to lock him down!
Through the struggle, nobody takes note of the Timid Tiger willing himself back to his feet.
Nick Stuart: Wait, Jonathan-Christopher Hall is back up!
Richard Parker: And Cross is standing there like he’s AFK!
Nick Stuart: Hall with ROLLING DDT to put Cross to the mat and break the hold! I’m sure Rocky is thankful for that!
Richard Parker: I wouldn’t be so sure…
With Cross dealt with, the eyes of JCH find Rocky left recovering on the canvas. His ordinarily handsome expression suddenly turns cold and murderous, remembering the humiliation this dino-loving doofus brought to the LOVE CONVOY. At once, he grabs Rocky by the already aching legs and punishes him further by savage kicks to his inner knee!
Still brimming with rage, Jonathan-Christopher yanks the FDP up and briefly sets him into a fireman’s carry standing to his full height before throwing Rocky down across the knee with a gutbuster, earning a delighted cheer from Vickie at ringside. The only cheering for the LOVE CONVOY co-founder in the entire arena, mind you. But to him, the only one that matters. Her joy is his joy, as he smiles back at his ALP and blows her a kiss.
Nick Stuart: (audibly gagging over the air) I… can’t believe these two…
Richard Parker: Do you feel the LOVE, Nick?
Nick Stuart: What I feel is, Rich, is deep-seated antipathy. But back to the action, Jonathan-Christopher Hall is going for the pin!
Rocky kicks out!
Outside the ring, Stu Weiler gives Rocky words of encouragement to keep him in the fight. Vickie is shrilly ordering her ALP to stay on him. Meanwhile, Dave Gibson is quietly coaching Cross, in the process of pushing himself back off the mat.
Nick Stuart: This is turning out to be a triple threat challenge both in and OUT of the ring!
Richard Parker: P’ah… helicopter managers. I remember the days when they would just let the younglings go in there and figure it out on their own!
Nick Stuart: I’m sorry, were you just yelling a cloud just now? JCH pulls the FDP back to his feet, but here comes the EC back into the action! RUSSIAN LEGSWEEP brings Jonathan-Christopher Hall to the mat! He floats over for the cover!
NO! Vickie Hall can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that her Amazing Life Partner is still in this, for now!
N1GHTCRAW1ER rises up and looks to Rocky De Leon, weakly trying to pull himself up in the corner. Coaching from the outside, Gibson urges him to keep on JCH, which he does, by pulling him back off the mat by the arm and wrapping it around his head to set him up for the RNG cutter! But before he can drop, Hall instinctively throws a leg back into his undercarriage!
Nick Stuart: LOW BLOW!
Richard Parker: The Leo Fong low-budget martial arts classic? WHERE?!
Nick Stuart: Don’t tell me you didn’t see that, Rich!
Dave Gibson certainly saw it, as he vehemently points out to official Jimmy Turnbull. Jimmy looks to Hall, looks to Cross crumpled on the canvas, and looks back to Hall, who is doing his absolute best in this moment to look completely innocent. Turnbull is skeptical, until something past Jonathan-Christopher catches his attention. Following his gaze, JCH slowly turns…
…and finds Rocky De Leon perched on the top rope behind him!
Nick Stuart: What do you call THAT?!
Rocky De Leon: THE FLYY-IIING COOON-SEEEENT!
Rocky comes crashing down upon JCH with an astounding high-angle backflip press right into the north-south position, earning him a loud pop from the crowd! Quickly, he transitions into a cross-legged Boston crab from his new position. Hall howls in pain, reaching for ropes that are several feet away. Just beyond them, he sees the face of his beloved Vickie, and the tears of anguish welling up in her eyes. He’s about to lose it. Which means he’s about to lose her.
And he can’t let that happen!
JCH stuffs his knuckles between his teeth and bites down. A trail of blood oozes down his hand, but better to have it bleed than to tap. Then, out of the blue, salvation comes in the form of a running chop block from the N1GHTCRAW1LER.
Nick Stuart: BROKEN UP by Eddie Cross, who clipped the FDP’s knee out from under him! It looked as though he almost had Jonathan-Christopher Hall on the verge of tapping out before he was interrupted!
Richard Parker: Kids these days… always trying to get tap outs in triple threats! When are they ever gonna learn, Nick?
Rocky rolls and quickly regains his footing as EC advances on him. Cross attempts to finish him off with a spinning back elbow, but the FDP ducks and throws himself into the ropes for some speed.
On the return, he hops once.
Rocky De Leon: BUN–
Rocky De Leon: –NY–
Hops a third time, extending his leg into a kick.
Rocky De Leon: –HO–OWW!!
Rocky coils up in agony on the third bounce and inexplicably leaps right into Eddie’s arms. Cross is stunned, though perhaps not in the way the FDP intended, but he doesn’t look the gift horse in the mouth as he drops him into a devastating spinebuster!
Richard Parker: The hell was he going for there? And why did it remind me of my Team Fortress Classic days?
Nick Stuart: I’m not sure, but it appears that the third bounce proved to be too much for Rocky De Leon’s worked over legs, and it foiled whatever he was attempting to do there!
Richard Parker: I was the top sniper for my clan, you know?
Nick Stuart: Trust me, I believe you. But hold the phone now… Vickie Hall up to the apron, trying to distract Jimmy Turnbull! She must be in pure desperation mode at this point!
Jimmy senses a commotion, but before the official can spot her, she’s suddenly GONE!
Richard Parker: Hey! Is Old Man Dave getting handsy over there or what?
Nick Stuart: No, partner! He’s keeping this contest even, is what he’s doing!
The ever-vigilant Gibson has Vickie by the wrist, having just yanked her back down to the floor, to much approval from the PRIMATEs. Vickie, appropriately offended by this turn of events, lets loose an ear-piercing squeal.
Vickie Hall: BAAAAAYYY-BEEEEEEE!!!
Hearing her cry of distress, JCH perks up and scrambles back to his feet. His eyes find Vickie, his one true love, being physically ACCOSTED by another man! Again, the expression on his face tenses into pure, murderous fury. This transgression will NOT stand!
Cross, going for the only opponent left standing in the ring, attempts to grab JCH from behind. But in a flash, the Timid Tiger ducks through his arms and fluidly transitions into a hammer throw, chucking N1GHTCRAW1ER over the ropes!
Nick Stuart: Eddie Cross to the outside! How did Jonathan-Christopher see him coming?!
Richard Parker: HA! That’s what you get when you try to come between a man and his LOVE!
Seeing his student hit the floor, Gibson’s attention immediately switches from Vickie to getting Eddie up and back into the ring. On the other side, Stu Weiler is frantically slapping the mat to stir the FBD back into action. Rocky begins to push himself up, until the JCH pounces upon him, hooks his arms from behind, and twists.
Nick Stuart: STAND BY ME!! Jonathan-Christopher Hall hooks the leg!
DING DING DING
The PRIMEATEs groan in disapproval. Steven Tyler’s impassioned wail comes in over the PA. JCH rises off of Rocky’s chest, astonished that he actually pulled it off, and is almost immediately tackled off his feet by Vickie after she scrambles into the ring and wraps him into her loving embrace.
Vince Howard: The winner of the match, by pinfall… JONATHAN… CHRISTOPHER… HAAAAAALLLLLLLLL!!
Nick Stuart: It looks as though it’s a glorious night for the Halls, and by extension LOVE CONVOY, as Jonathan-Christopher picks up the W, and also avenges his cousin the Nuzzle Lord with a pin over Rocky De Leon!
Richard Patrick: LOVE conquers all, yet again! More importantly, though, J-C is now OUT of the doghouse!
Nick Stuart: In any essence, Eddie Cross and Rocky De Leon had bright spots in this contest, and took direction well from their respective mentors. Clearly, though, there’s still work to be done with these young up-and-coming talents.
Cross and Gibson are beside themselves with frustration, with Dave again bringing up to the official the earlier low blow. Stu Weiler folds up his laptop and shakes his head with disapproval as the beaten Rocky crawls out of the ring to join him.
In the ring, Jonathan-Christopher Hall pumps an arm in triumph, Vickie’s arms wrapped endearingly around his neck. Tonight, their Hallmark Journey takes a brave step forward.
We then cut to our first commercial break of the evening.