We return from commercial to the PRIME Faithful of St. Louis buzz over the night’s proceedings until “Slum Planet” by 3TEETH hits the sound system. The excitement inside the Enterprise Center drops harder than a Nee Yorker droppin’ their G’s.
Nick Stuart: Annnnd there goes everyone’s night.
Richard Parker: You say that, but I see everyone that was on their way to the concessions and bathrooms making a beeline back to their seats!
Pleasant makes his way out from the back, sporting a three-piece business suit. His tie and vest are two different shades of red while the jacket and slacks are black. Arthur’s hair is combed and brushed like he just came from the barber.
Directly behind this dapper looking sociopath?
A murderous looking Yuri Reznikov with a full-length beard.
Nick Stuart: Looks like Arthur isn’t taking any chances for retaliation tonight.
Richard Parker: I’ll say. Having a seven-foot Russian mercenary at your side will make anyone think twice about accosting you.
Before getting into the ring, Pleasant turns his attention to where the brand new PRIME Universal Champion, Ivan Stanislav, and his compatriot, Alexei Ruslan, are sitting at ringside. Arthur makes his way over to them both.
Arthur Pleasant: (Un-Mic’d) Congratulations, Proppershtick! There is no one more deserving of that beautiful championship!
Pleasant extends a hand to Ivan, but Alexei says something to Ivan that Arthur can’t quite make out. For a brief moment, Alexei looks like he will stop Ivan’s hand from grabbing onto Arthur’s, but Alexei stands down. Despite Alexei’s original reservations, Ivan and Arthur embrace in a respectful handshake.
Nick Stuart: I think I’m gonna be sick.
Richard Parker: I, for one, applaud the respect being shown to the NEW Universal Champion by Arthur Pleasant. Class act, in my opinion! Though, if I heard that correctly, I think he said his rank wrong.
Nick Stuart: I heard that, too. Could be what Alexei whispered into Ivan’s ear, maybe?
Turning his focus back onto the ring, he slithers underneath the bottom rope like a serpent. Ignoring the boobirds of St. Louis, Yuri walks over to the timekeeper’s area, menacing everyone in the vicinity with his more-than-imposing figure. Demanding something in Russian, everyone can sense that it’s a microphone he wants.
Nick Stuart: Well, I don’t think you have to be fluent in Russian to understand what Yuri wants here.
Once he grips his gigantic paw around a microphone, Yuri walks over to the side of the ring where Pleasant is waiting. Grabbing it, Pleasant slithers back to the center of the ring. Sitting criss-cross style in the center of the ring, facing ramp-side. He waits for his theme music to fade, then starts laughing.
Arthur Pleasant: Hahaha…ohhhh man. I’ve been to a lot of cities, but you people are literally the trashiest looking shitbags I’ve ever seen. And, mind you, I’ve been to places like Shibuya. Yeah. Where Tokyoites shit in their hands, eat it, and pretend they’re enjoying a chocolate Frosty from Wendy’s.
It doesn’t take more than a few seconds for all of St. Louis to take exception to this.
ASSSSSSSSHOOOOOOLE! ASSSSSSSSHOOOOOOLE! ASSSSSSSSHOOOOOOLE!
Nick Stuart: Well, that’s a visual I didn’t need any time this century.
Richard Parker: To be honest, Nick? I’ve had a Wendy’s frosty and I imagine they’re not much different than a Tokyo Mudpie.
Nick Stuart: A… what?!
Richard Parker: Never you mind, Nick!
Arthur cackles at the response, mouthing “GOT ‘EEEEEEEEM!” into a cameraman’s camera at ringside. After about a minute, the attempted hijacking from these St. Louisans is thwarted with patience and focus.
Arthur Pleasant: I apologize.
Everyone in the arena starts to quiet down. Someone with impeccable timing at ringside shouts, “FUCK YOU, TEEF BOY!” loud enough to garner a chuckle from the entire arena.
Arthur Pleasant: Good one, sir. Way to prove my point. ANYWAAAAY. As I was saying… I apologize. I apologize, Rocky, for not giving you the attention you deserve much sooner than I did.
Pleasant bears the fangs. Particularly at the popcorn eating, beer drinking fat add who yelled “TEEF BOY” to give their pathetic life some meaning and excitement.
Arthur Pleasant: You can thank that puffy-bodied Anglo Lunchador for accosting me backstage on my first night here, Rocky. Had it not been for one person’s bullying, I would have did to you what I did at UltraViolence, right then and there.
Nick Stuart: Is he not hearing himself?!
Richard Parker: Just go with it. Please, for the love of GOD, don’t say anything that’ll bring that psychopath up here!
Arthur Pleasant: I was actually on my way to see you before I was so rudely interrupted. Now, fast forward to Tropical Turmoil! I’m finally done with one Mask when, to my surprise and uncontrolled disappointment, another Mask interrupts me! Now, I hate to speak ill of the dead, but Mortimer—ever the annoying gnat that he was, may he rest in peace—deemed it fucking prudent to try and get my attention!
Nick Stuart: I meeeeean, Morty’s not dead, though.
Richard Parker: Shhhhh! Seriously, I will kill you if Arthur hurts me.
Nick Stuart: Just sayin’!
Arthur Pleasant: As if Mask #2 was EVER on my level! As if he ever had a chance to teach a thing or two about violence to the goddamn MASTER of it! Through it all, though, I proved Mortimer Kuh-Jedeelichsenheimerfucklestein to be just another moron— like all of you shit-eating Show-Me’s out there who bought your tickets with food stamps and fellatian promises. That included you, sir. Yeah, YOU! The one whose best features happened to run down his mother’s hairy chin.
Nick Stuart: Dear GOD. This guy is AWFUL. I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts getting pelted with trash soon.
Richard Parker: I didn’t know Morty was Jewish. The more you know. Cue the star and rainbow!
Arthur Pleasant: So here we are, Rocky. No more interruptions. No more Masks left to hurdle over in order to get to you. It’s just you and me, mono-y-mono. Speaking of which, I believe I asked you a question at UltraViolence, did I not? Yyyyeah. So how about it, Lion? What’s behind your mask?
Pausing, Arthur taps the microphone against his temple three times. Despite the golden opportunity, no one dares to shout anything at him this time, as Arthur gives a hard look toward the fan that shouted at him.
Arthur Pleasant: Since I gave you ample opportunity to answer me, don’t bother saying a word. Stay in the shadows now, like a scorned little kid who got spanked for misbehaving. Believe it or not, I already know the answer to that question. The answer is… nothing. NOTHING. To be precise, it’s LESS than NOTHING! NOTHING actually puts YOU on the proverbial refrigerator with proverbial fucking magnets, proud at the depths of naivety and irrelevance you’ve managed to secure here in PRIME. NOTHING aspires to be just as ignorant and blind to the world around it as you have proved yourself to be.
The audience doesn’t even say a word. The camera catches Ivan Stanislav locking eyes with Pleasant. Each of them sharing the briefest of moments. There might have even been a smile traded between the Nightmare and the Russian Bear.
Arthur Pleasant: This is the hard fucking truth, folks. Me MDKing Rocky De Leon at UltraViolence? Though fun and likely to happen again if he decides to try and retaliate like Mort did, this isn’t just about that weird little Birdman. With Almasy II coming up? It’s opened my eyes to a world full of complacency and tribalistic hypocrisy. Because I’m fucking TIRED of the cowards and the phony personas waltzing around here like they own 51% shares in the pro-wrestling stock. I’m tired of everyone pretending how the Glue Factory, or the Glueminati, or Generation Glue, or Blue Live Glue, or Glue Foundation, or whatever the FUCK name they’ve decided to settle upon, aren’t just a freerange, cage-free version of the eGG Bandits themselves.
Another hard-hitting, mic-drop-esque reactive “OHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!” from the St. Louis crowd. On a roll, Pleasant paces back and forth, continuing his train of thought.
Arthur Pleasant: I’m fucking TIRED of a group of overrated, nonsensical sloths that stop all progress with the philosophy of “Well Jiles won the Universal Title, so we’re good now!” and just carry on being the in-an-out of “INSERT PROMOTION featured on the ACE NETWORK here!” boom-or-bust bag of boredom that should’ve disbanded YEARS ago. I’m tired of people worshiping a crumbling, near-seventy-old hypocritical relic of a man who fancies himself as this imposing Babbling Tower in Brandon Youngblood. I’m sick of our 5-Star Champion looking like a 1-Star cream puff with a forehead that can be seen from outer space. I’m sick to death of the mustachioed Hayes Hanlon and all the food particles that have taken up residence in there. I am SICK. TO. FUCKING. DEATH. of the majority of these elitist cunts having a grip on this place just because they were here once upon a time. And you know what, folks? That makes that locker room back there, and their revered leaders of PRIME, no better than the entire toxic bullshit we all know that goes on inside some of our “partners” in that joke of a cross-play network, PWA.
Massive… MASSIVE “OOOOOOOOOOOH’S”, followed by equally massive boo’s. Arthur laughs, putting a hand over the microphone. He looks directly into the camera and yells, quasi-audibly, “Fine me, LT. I don’t really give a shit. Just make sure you put it on my fucking bill.”. Removing his hand from the microphone, Pleasant continues.
Arthur Pleasant: So this is what I’m going to do, Rocky: you even think about coming after me in some kind of reprisal I’m going to flip your off switch faster than a Ria Lockhart cup-of-coffee appearance, and it will be the finest example of what’s coming in PRIME. For the Almasy. For Colossus. For the rest of 2023. For 2024 and fucking BEYOND! Your destruction plays a pivotal role in the looming calamity of pain that’s making a beeline for Earth. And when the unstoppable meteor strikes down, annihilating all in its path as it did when it killed the dinosaurs– your people and Brandon’s, I’d wager– I and…
Pleasant looks directly at Ivan and Alexei. A mutual nod between all three occurs.
Arthur Pleasant: … a few select otters who “get it”, will be the last ones standing in its glorious ruin.
He smiles wide. Harrowingly.
Arthur Pleasant: See you at ReVival 37, Coral.
Pleasant flips the microphone up with great force, causing it to land harshly on the mat. What follows can only be described as painful auditory rape from the screeching of interference. “3TEETH” plays again, seeing Arthur and Yuri out as they walk up the ramp.
Nick Stuart: Holy…
Richard Parker: …shit?
Nick Stuart: Well, I was going to say something a little less exclamatory, but yes.
Richard Parker: I mean, along with announcing his intentions to basically eviscerate Rocky de Leon from the PRIME roster in some kind of anti-mask crusade, he just dropped the mic on some of the who’s who of the Almasy tournament. Why someone would try and draw the ire of the entire Glue Factory, Brandon Youngblood, and others is simply beyond my understanding. Wow.
Nick Stuart: Part of me can’t help if this is some sort of grand plan of his. Say what you will about him but, not only is he an incredible athlete in that ring, but he is as smart as anybody I’ve seen. Don’t mistake psychopathy for strategy when it comes to this guy!
Richard Parker: Couldn’t have said it any better myself. Well, I could’ve but, you deserved this one, Nick. Haha.
Nick Stuart: Thanks, I think.
With Pleasant and Yuri disappearing into the backstage area, we transition elsewhere.