Nick Stuart: We’re back from commercial break and…
PRIME’s play-by-play commentator stops dead in his tracks as “Better Than You” by Metallica interrupts him.
Richard Parker: Yes! A visit from Tony Gamble!
Nick Stuart: This isn’t on my runsheet, what’s the meaning of this?
Richard Parker: You need to adore Gamble more, Nick. Stop asking so many questions.
As the highlights of Gamble’s illustrious career play on the PRIMEview, the Permascar Superstar emerges, arms outstretched, with Mortimer Knightengale behind him and flanking him to his left. Gamble preens to the crowd as he strolls forward. As he gets a third of the way down the aisle, his business associates, Domingo Cruz and Frank Pastore, slowly cross over from Argyle position dragging a limp, masked body wearing a “Fighting for Jonathan” shirt.
Nick Stuart: Oh no, did the GAS assault The Anglo Luchador backstage after the cameras stopped rolling from when they were on screen?
Richard Parker: That’s a wild accusation, Nick. We gotta hear Tony out. Remember that episode of The Simpsons where the clumsy waiter wrongfully accused that Quimby boy of roughing him up when it was due to his own incompetence?
Nick Stuart: That’s a cartoon, Rich.
The luchador is clearly groggy and barely conscious as blood oozes from the holes on his torn and tattered mask. His shirt is stretched out and bloodied. His eyes are glassy as the GAS associates drag him to the ring. Mort stands in the corner, looking as if he wishes he were anywhere else, while Tony heads over to Vince Howard to ask for a microphone. The GAS associates lift the luchador onto the apron and shove him haphazardly under the ropes. Tony taps on the microphone before lifting it to his mouth.
Tony Gamble: Look at this… I hate to be the one to say I told you so, but I warned him that he was barking up too many trees. I told him, in words that you younger generation may understand a bit better, that he was chasing too much smoke and he shouldn’t be wandering around alone. He did not listen, mocked me for offering my assistance, and now he is laying there bleeding all over the mat like his week has come.
Gamble makes his way closer to the ring ropes, a fire in his eyes as he continues.
Tony Gamble: It didn’t have to be that way, but I get it. I of all people know that PRIME has always been a place where violence runs rampant, and Angie here has never held back in pointing out that I was one of the ones causing that violence. I don’t deny my past, hell it got me in the PRIME Hall of Fame, and to where I am today. But there is a line that shouldn’t be crossed. Assholes like Paxton Ray and the Love Convoy have repeatedly crossed that line, and while Angie doesn’t want my assistance he doesn’t deserve to be left in the back fighting everyone’s fights on his own. He shouldn’t be in the locker rooms and hallways begging to fight alongside your supposed good guys, only to be brushed aside or ignored because he is only top tier in his own mind. He may not be on the level of Hayes Hanlon, or have the youthful aggressiveness of Nate Colton, but he doesn’t deserve to be ignored or kicked to the curb because of it. Not when all he wants to do is prove that he is here to be a pillar of PRIME’s ReVival.
Tony turns and looks down at The Anglo Luchador as he starts to stir, then makes his way over to his side and squats down next to him.
Tony Gamble: Don’t worry, Angie. I’m going to find out who did this to you, and i am going to make them pay… No, we’re going to make them pay, because we are not going to stand by and let people do whatever the hell they want. Lindsay Troy and her ragtag group of merry men may have their hands tied in red tape, because they have morals and children that look up to them and expect them to carry themselves to a higher standard, but I don’t give a damn what kids think of me and I wipe my ass with red tape.
Tony stands back up and motions for Pastore and Cruz to pull TAL out of the ring.
Tony Gamble: So I want whoever did this to listen up… You’re going to get what is coming to you, so be ready because…
Something – no, someone – comes running out from Argyle position and catches Tony’s attention. He drops the microphone and motions for the rest of the Gamble Adoration Syndicate to scatter into the crowd. Not from fear of the lone man heading toward the ring, but because that is not why he is out here and he is sure that the man is not responsible for the Intense Champion’s current state – Dusk. He chases off the GAS and covers the luchador.
Nick Stuart: Finally!
Richard Parker: But it was just getting good!
Nick Stuart: You’re incorrigible sometimes, you know that?
Dusk helps the luchador to his feet and keeps him upright as they walk to the back, presumably to pay a visit to Dr. Fihlguud.