The camera pans through a fully lit corridor, buzzing with the palpable tension and excitement of ReVival’s typical high-energy atmosphere. Vibrant posters promoting NHL’s Buffalo Sabres adorn the walls, as well as other events coming through in the approaching weeks and months. The ambient sound of a roaring crowd seeps through the walls, underscoring the anticipation backstage.
Suddenly, we see the always beautiful Angelica Brooks standing by, against a velvety backdrop. She stands with a microphone in hand.
Angelica Brooks: Ladies and gentlemen… Arthur Pleasant.
Pleasant slowly makes his way into the camera’s view, already in his ring gear, ready for his match-up later on with “The Legend” Rob Williams. Acknowledging Angelica’s introduction, Arthur grabs her hand and kisses the top of it like a true gentleman. She pulls back her hand, instinctively, clearly disgusted by whose lips that did the kissing.
Arthur Pleasant: Thank you for such a sweet introduction, Brooksie!
Angelica, looking supremely annoyed, sighs.
Angelica Brooks: It’s Brooks, actually. Or Angelica. Or even Angie.
Pleasant snickers at her annoyance.
Arthur Pleasant: Oh, my apologies, Brooksie– I mean ANNNNNJ. Regardless, thanks for agreeing to this backstage interview. To be honest, I’ve been waiting for the right time to speak ever since Coral Avalon eliminated me from the Almasy. And right here, right now? It’s the right time.
PRIME’s Worst Nightmare pulls out a piece of notebook paper. Its frilly edge suggests it has been ripped from a notebook recently. Though we can’t see what exactly is ON the piece of paper, we can make out the ink of some handwriting, some scratches, and a smiley face on the bottom right corner.
Angelica Brooks: Okay. I’m probably going to be sorry I asked this but, what is this?!
Arthur Pleasant: It’s the questions you’re going to ask me, Anj! Approved by Starshy Praporshchik Ivan Stanislav and Alexei Ruslan, of course. Considering the number of years you’ve been doing your job, I would’ve thought reading comprehension would’ve been a given.
Angelica sneers at Arthur for the condescending answer. She looks down at the piece of paper, then looks back at Pleasant.
Angelica Brooks: I’m not reading this. Get someone else to participate in your BS!!
Angelica hands Pleasant the microphone and piece of paper. There’s an audible !!POP!! coming from the audience who are watching the events transpire in real time from inside the KeyBank Arena.
Arthur Pleasant: (hand over mic) Just for that, I will never go on a fucking date with you! EVER!
Turning his attention back to the camera, Pleasant adjusts his imagin3ary tie and smiles.
Arthur Pleasant: Hello, my beautiful Arthurians and fellow comrades of the cause! It’s been a little while, hasn’t it PRIME? Indeed it has, friends. In fact, not since ReVival thirty-nine, on the first of December, Two-Thousand and Twenty-Three have I been featured, or even SEEN, anywhere here in PRIME.
He shakes his head in disgust. The kind of disgust one would have watching Rob Williams clipping his old man toe nails infected with Onychomycosis. Look it up. It’s gross. That’s our Legend, everybody.
Arthur Pleasant: That’s almost two whooooole boring, empty fucking months without your favorite, friendly, neighborhood Provocateur gracing your television screens, smart phones, laptops, or whatever else you catch your wrasslin’ on! Fear not, though… for I am back. That’s right, I’m back, and as Mr. Salvation Army will see later on this evening, I’m better than ever, too.
Pausing, he looks at the piece of paper he tried to get Angelica to read from.
Arthur Pleasant: (muttering to self) Seriously, bitch?! THIS offended you?
Clearing his throat and focusing back on the camera, he continues.
Arthur Pleasant: But that’s not why I’m standing in front of you, Angelica!
He shifts from where he stands to where Angelica stood moments ago. It’s here that he assumes the duties that Angelica just shirked.
Reading the paper, Arthur-Angelica speaks.
Angelicarthur Brooksant: Arthur, the last time we saw you, you got your team disqualified by kicking Rocky de Leon square in the oiled yam bags. What was going through your mind at that moment and what are your plans for Rocky de Leon?
Arthur-Angelica quickly switches sides on the velvet back drop, going back to his normal— in a matter of speaking— self.
Arthur Pleasant: Rocky de Leon isn’t in PRIME anymore. Least, that’s what I was last told when I showed up to Colossus looking for him. But the fact is I kicked him in the sack so hard he had to go get implants. Luckily they had a bag of peas handy so the procedure went smoothly, I’m told. That’s the rumor, anyway. Seems plausible to me. Truth is, I was very much looking forward to beating him down inside the ring, mono-y-mono, but things happen and he decided to take his leave.
He smirks. Arms folded, Pleasant scratches his beard.
Arthur Pleasant: Just like Morty, and just like Kohime. You know, given the number of opponents I’ve sent packing, I don’t think Anna Daniels has much room to talk for the amount of competitors leaving PRIME. Maybe there’s some chemistry there between us down the road! But hey, I digress. The answer to your question, Anj, is this: I have absolutely no plans for Rocky de Leon moving forward. The Pale Apollyon is ready for the next chapter.
Again, Pleasant switches spots with ‘Anj’.
Anjelicarthur Brooksant: So, what does this mean, Arthur? What is your focus moving forward, then?
Arthur laughs, back to his normal spot.
Arthur Pleasant: Simple, really. I think it’s time for good ole Uncle Arthur to flex his ring genius and win some championship gold here in PRIME. My comrades deserve to have some more gold within the family, after all. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have my eyes on that Intense Title. Barbed wire ropes match? That’s my fucking wheelhouse. Whether it’s Pax or Max— I’d love to show those guys a thing or two about the intricacies of barbed wire and how beautiful it can be!
He thinks for a moment. Then, it’s like a lightbulb went off above his head.
Arthur Pleasant: Or maybe I go after the Alias Championship and everyone starts playing by my rules. Oooo. Imagine that, eh? All title defenses require me to place a shopping bag over someone’s head and suffocate them until they go unconscious! Of course, I would love to hit Cecilbaby with another Calamity Pain, like I did once upon a time in a galaxy far, far away, and take the Five-Star title. Then of course, I could take my neck back from Flambo!
He closed his eyes and shakes his head. Placing a hand up, he opens his eyes and continues.
Arthur Pleasant: But, I don’t want to get ahead of myself here, Anj. I need to train hard if I want to get my hands on any championship belt! And that’s why I want to announce that I will be training… at the KING gym!
Mephistopheles himself couldn’t make a viewer shudder like Arthur Pleasant just did right there. A smirk stretches across his pale, evil face.
Arthur Pleasant: That’s right. David was so impressed with my transformative training regimen that I was given a lifetime membership! I mean, who cares the elliptical machine is broken and someone threw sopping wet urinal cakes all over their free weights bench. Who cares that Rose keeps her panties in the top drawer of her storage space and they smell like fresh blooming flowers. It might not be the cleanest establishment I’ve seen, but it’ll serve its purpose in my transcendence throughout 2024!
Switching spots again, Arthur, err, Angelica, looks appalled.
Angelicarthur Brooksant: Why, Arthur! How on earth would you know these things!
Arthur Pleasant: I had a key, of course!
Angelicarthur Brooksant: Lies!
Arthur Pleasant: Negative, Anj. In fact, once the good people at KING pull up their security footage, they’ll see I walked right into the place without smashing a window or door! Nothing but good intentions, see!
Arthur’s face turns serious as all blood and circulation seems to have left him ashen. The deadness behind his eyes is matched only by the soullessness in his voice.
He looks straight into the camera.
Arthur Pleasant: Dolores, David. I will honor her memory by bathing in not only your blood, but the blood of those you hold dear. You never should’ve shown up here, my old friend. You and the rest of KING.
He pauses. Nostrils flaring. A beat, then Arthur’s nostrils flare.
Arthur Pleasant: And yet, you did. You all did. And that is something I must take care of.
Arthur’s face changes again. It’s almost as if he woke up from some kind of trance.
A beat. Then a smile.
Arthur Pleasant: I look forward to training with KING! I know my best friend, Starshy Praporshchik Ivan Stanislav, will be proud of me!
Tossing the single sheet of paper aside. Pleasant gives an almost cartoonish wink to the camera. Mouthing “Bye bye!” and fluttering his fingers, he leaves the general vicinity before the camera switches to another area of the KeyBank Arena.