“And though we both climbed out of the same pit, one of us was going back in.” — Jiles’ Journal, March 7th, 2022.
ReVival 4 has come and gone.
Whimsy. Pomp. Circumstance. Drama. A Williams. An egregious act. The lowest of something in PRIME’s long and vaunted history.
It had it all.
Well, not everything.
Bobby Dean was unsuccessful in his attempt at winning a wrestling match this decade. He did participate so there’s that. Hopefully his struggles cease to survive when he and Doozer represent the eGG Bandits in the BIGGEST and BEST tag team gathering the world has ever seen. If not, Market Makers predict sterno cans will be a hot commodity among the Las Vegas buffet scene throughout the month of April.
Then, in what some pundits are calling a magical contest involving a masked entity, Cancer Jiles and his golden ticket fortunately fell forward into the fourth round of the Almasy Invitational. Lindsay Troy, Queen of PRIME, is said to be overly eggstatic about the very real possibility of Jiles soon having a Balaam like death grip over the Universal Championship scene.
Not to be out done by his contemporaries, Doozer, the old battle hog, proved himself useful when he beat up a crazed fan who charged the ring before Jiles’ third round matchup. Much to everyone’s chagrin said fan happened to be former eGG Bandit, Zeb Martin.
In non-bandit related chicanery, and in what is being called the lowest drawing main event in all of PRIME’s history, TEDDY PALMER defied space and time when he outlasted the lovely Anna Daniels.
…one Bandit has as many wins as the others have losses.
…the final for the Lisieux Bracket is set.
Cancer Jiles; Greek God of COOL. eGG Bandit. Bounty Hunter. Grand Maestro of Silence. UNIVERSAL BY DEFINITION.
The winner goes on to CULTURE SHOCK where the MAIN EVENT and the chance to become KING SHIT await.
No big deal.
You’d think a match of this magnitude would be motivation enough, and I imagine for your Impulse’s and Brandon Youngblood’s of the world it might be. However, Jiles versus Palmer is a match that goes beyond stardom and the chance to leave one’s mark in PRIME history. Theirs is a blood match. Both think they are better than the other, and neither can even be bothered to entertain otherwise. There will be no respite, solace, or place to hide when they are done. The loser might as well retire because he’ll never be able to escape the outcome as long as the other exists.
Of course, the true magic in all of this is when the two face off against each other at ReVival 5 it will be for the first time in singles competition.
It’s never happened before, and it’ll probably never happen again depending on who the winner is. Now, that’s not to say that Cancer and Ted haven’t encountered each other in the past. They’ve danced inside the squared circle in clusterfuck matches, had run-ins galore that went horribly wrong, and maybe even shared a salty egg or two.
They’ve eaten at the same table.
They’ve bled in the same ring.
They’ve sailed on the same Aircraft Carrier.
Now, it’s time to cut all the shit and finally find out.
Big show. Big spot. No excuses.
Someone is leaving with egg on their face.
A lot of it.
Could you imagine having to follow something like this?
MGM Grand Garden Arena
“The battle had been won. Sadly, it would come with a cost.”– Jiles’ Journal, March 4th, 2022.
My round three match is over.
I am the winner.
Jiles number one.
Not only that, but Zeb Martin, the former torch carrying eGG Bandit who tried to crash the party beforehand, is waiting in the back for his immortalization via cardboard.
It’s trouble and uncertainty that follow me out of the ring. I should be happy. I should be thrilled with a smile as wide as the Mississippi stretching across my face. Matter of fact I should be skipping back up the entrance ramp while picturing what the cardboard cutout museum is going to look like. Alas, as I pass through the curtain and into the waiting arms of the Final Four… there is no smile. There is no comfort. There is no fervor, or excitement to invigorate me.
Only dread exists.
Only worry is prevalent.
Something’s wrong. It’s not nerves. It’s not if the printing press has a setting for Southern/Redneck. Something is physically wrong with me.
That idiot. That Masked Moron. He manhandled me, and made my throat feel like I had just gotten done partying with David Carradine.
It’s not that I can’t breathe though…
It’s my mist. The yellow fog. The COOLYMPIAN YOLJK.
I can’t seem to draw upon a yolky breath.
Panic starts to set in as I make my way around backstage. I need to gargle. Yolks. Doubles. A lot of them. I also need to get into cryostasis. Full body. Upside down. I also need to see who is going to win the main event I’m not in. Well, that can probably wait.
First things first, I need to get my ass back to the den.
Thankfully, for my own sake, I’m here.
I push open the door, because of course it’s not locked. Why would it be? It’s not like we’re keeping a hostage back here or anything. If I could place a bet on whether or not Zeb is being restrained with a lone strand of linguini, I would. I saw Bobby eating clams over pasta to stack carbohydrates before his match.
He finished the clams.
To the surprise of no one.
I swiftly enter the room and immediately close the door behind me. Then I turn to my cohorts, both current and noncurrent, and yell out in a broken nail type of panic, “Quick, get the doubles! Now! Yellow alert!” My commotion interrupts both Bob’s nap and Doozer’s cribbage game… against himself. It’s the only way his ancient brain can get a win these days.
“What’s going on?” Bobby asks, still in somewhat of a slumber. He agonizingly rubs a sleepy from his eye, and then some of the leftover clam broth from off his chin. “Double what now?”
My blood starts to simmer. My throat is hardening. I shout once more, “GET THE DOUBLE YOLKS, CHONK! I DON’T HAVE TIME TO EXPLAIN!”
The arrogant piss upstart also known as Zeb, who not long ago was carrying our bags, crosses a leg and lets out a conniving chuckle. He then quips to Dooze, “Told y’all. Fer like the hundredth dern time. He ain’t care ‘bout nobody but his own self.”
Doozer nods in agreement.
My blood kicks up to a boil. The chances of me ever spitting hot yellow again are disappearing faster than JKR’s fan following. Still, I guess I have the time for my old chum. “YOU SHUT YOUR TRAITOROUS MOUTH, YOU… TRAITOR! I’ll fishhook the shit out of your stupid southern ass right here! They’ll be calling you Cardboard Shithook when I’m done with you. Poor old Dooze will have to cart your ass to the nearest recycling center.”
The Elder Bandit scoffs.
Bobby, always the curious one, cuts the tension with a timely interruption. He kindly says to me, “You’re going to finger hook the shit out of him? Is he blocked up? Does he need a laxative instead? I mean, I’ve done some weird shit but that’s kind of out there, Cancer. Even for us. Plus, whatever happened to once a Bandit always a Bandit?”
I look at Bob sideways. “His mouth, Bob. Not his asshole.”
“Oh.” He is relieved. “That makes sense. Carry on then. Just do me a favor and try to keep it down. I was sleeping, ya know.”
All eyes do the Troy. My barrage rolls on. “THIS IS STILL A CODE YELLOW! SOMEONE PLEASE GET THE DOUBLE YOLKS! WE’VE WASTED ENOUGH TIME AS IT IS! NOW IT’S GOING TO HAVE TO BE A CHIN CRACK OPERA–”
Bobby, Dooze, and even the captive Zeb Martin leap to their feet and storm the small refrigerator before I can even finish. They each arm themselves with a carton and come hurrying back. I power squat into the chair Bobby was napping in, and point my chin directly up in the air. Then, without hesitation or quivering hands, one by one they start cracking eggs with pit crew precision. Each shell meets its expiration date against my chin, and then its gooey contents are quickly and cleanly dumped into my awaiting and agape gullet.
After I get a few yolks in me I start to gargle like I’m trying to whisk the eggs into an omelet.
I chin up, position myself a little better in the chair, and urge them to continue. Oddly, they don’t seem to mind. Then again, it’s not every day you get to say you egged Cancer Jiles.
Chin cracks. Yolk drops. Gargling.
I make eye contact with Bob and mumble to him while in mid gargle, “salt.” He knows what I mean. Much like his Toxic Noxia ritual I have my own little thing as well. Mine just doesn’t have as cool a name. As such, Bob reaches down and pulls off one of my wrestling boots. He then holds it over my mouth and starts to vigorously tap on the bottom of the heel.
Chin cracks. Yolk drops. Boot salting. Gargling.
I don’t know what to do. Without my mist I might as well be… Perfection. Or worse, some candied cardinal terdbox with a surfboard who’s best buddy is Alex Redding. Then, it hits me. Double yolk. Double salt. Both boots. It might be a last resort but it’s what I got. Desperate, I motion towards Bob, but it’s already too late. The boys are frowning for the first time since we began. They have run out of eggs. There are no more eggs. It can actually happen. Even I wondered… but no. None tucked under Bob’s breast. None hidden under Zeb’s trucker hat. None… well, you never know with Dooze. It could be I just can’t see them. Still, he wouldn’t hold out on me. Not him. Not right now.
“Dude.” The old bastard looks on in disbelief. “You just ate thirty-six raw eggs. Your face is changing colors as I speak.”
Thanks for the update, Dooze. I knew I could always count on you. “What color is it now?” I ask, as if the right shade might just make everything okay.
He cordially responds, “It keeps changing… Green. Red. Ghost. Red. Green. Normal. Red. Ghost. Green. Oh, now it’s purple. Now blue. Now back to green.”
Dizzy, I blurt out, “I feel fine.”
He quickly responds, “I don’t remember asking how you felt.”
Got me there. Truth is no, I do not feel fine. I dart for the trashcan, and proceed to paint the inside of it yellow. It’s a long, timeless stream of undigested yolks.
Hopefully I remember to wash my hands.
Zeb, the cowardly pig fisherman that he is, of course doesn’t mind the stench that comes along with my repugnance. He turns and says with unbridled youthfulness to Dooze and Bobby as they are scurrying from the room, “Reckon we can cancel that Yeller Alert. He can spit sunny-side again.”
He then laughs at me for the second time.
There will not be a third.
I wipe my mouth, and the rest of the yolky dribble from my face. Unsurprisingly, I feel great after the purge. Great enough to ask Zeb why he did what he did. “Why?” See. “What was the point of charging the ring?” Instead of answering me he just cracks a silly smile. I notice a piece of linguini wrapped around one of his wrists, and grit my teeth for money lost. “Go on.” I press him. “You’ve come this far… tell me.”
Spoiler, he does. “Jus’ needed a minute alone with ya is all, and I know this here Bandits locker room ain’t got a open door policy.” I shake the yoke from off my one wrestling boot as if to respond to his threat. He clarifies, “Naw, not that. I got sumptin’ tuh tell ya.”
I shrug. “There’s cellphones you know, or do they not have that invention in Georgia yet? Still rocking the rotary down in the Plums state?”
My old pal retorts in kind. “Real funny, Pukey McGillicutty, it’s peach state, by tha way. I’s couldn’t risk the CIA tappin’ it anyways. Hadda tell ya in person.”
My attention salivates. “Is that so?” Oh, wait. That’s just egg slime I missed.
The master, commander, and angler of the seven seas answers, “Yep. Jiles, I done found it. Threw the line in and felt a snag, and lo’n behold pulled that sucker right out the water.”
I lean forward. “Found what? A merman to bed? I thought you had a cousin Maud already.”
Martin checks over his shoulder, inches a tad bit closer, and whispers, “She’s shipwrecked. Waterlogged. But I found her.” My eyes open wide like a triple penetrated butthole. It couldn’t be. No way. Not possible. “And I ain’t never go’n tell you where.”
I was wrong. The young and virile former Bandit laughs at me for a third time. My blood would be bubbling over, but whatever was inside the pot has turned to steam. Still, I can’t believe he actually found her. Or maybe he didn’t, and he just really likes PRIME. Regardless of which is true, if any of it, I doubt this is the last time our lines will cross.
The Ivory Tower
The Wait is Over
“No update on the new fern. I’m starting to think Doozer might have thought he ordered it. It’s possible the dementia is getting worse. Next, he might think himself to be useful. Good thing he is Robert’s mess now.” — Jiles’ Journal, March 10th, 2022.
A couple days have passed since ReVival 4. Still no mist. I sneezed, but that was a false positive from all the gargling.
I pride myself on being a pro. The show goes on. The ball keeps rolling. There’s me, my lovely couch which has yet to taste defeat, and the spot where I’m going to put my fern.
Whenever the fuck that comes.
I’m all PRIME’d out. Full garb, electric blue jumper with the pearl white track stripes. My “Fallen Star” t-shirt from ReVival 3 is underneath. My sneakers are as salty as can be, as is the gaudy, insurance fraud, supportive neck collar I’m wearing.
“What type of roach is Teddy Palmer?” I pause. “Cock.”
“Teddy. Fucking. Palmer.”
I yawn. It’s only mildly exaggerated due to the undisclosed neck, throat, and mist gland injuries. Voice is fine. Thank the lord. I could sing like a candied cardinal if I had to, or this would be a really tough sell.
I swear I don’t have two black and blue paw prints hickeying up my neck.
“Never heard of him, but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t have a golden ticket as a safety net. SO PEACE OUT BITCHES I’LL SEE YOU AT CULTURE SHOCK!”
“I jest, I jest. Summer Donna. I’m not Nova. I’m not a coward who lets his people down.”
If you listen closely, somewhere, someone is crying tears of joy. I’m sure of it.
“Actually, as it turns out, Ted and I go back quite a bit. I even know some of his family. His crazy cousin Laura. His always thirsty Uncle Arnold. I even know who Ted is a Big Brother to.”
A sly wink. No, it’s not that kind of thing.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
“Yet, even though Ted and I go back a ways our tips have never touched. I wonder why that is? Was it because I was too busy winning championships, and he was too busy throwing people off dinghies? I don’t know. I do know it’s crazy that we’ve never lined up across from each other. One on one. Mano y mano. Bull and Matador. Alien versus Predator.”
Sadly, my acid-like spray still remains absent. So yeah, that means Teddy is the Alien in this scenario. Which is good, since he looks like he’s from outer space and that’s where aliens come from.
Well, the legal ones anyway.
Then again, I guess Predators do too.
“That’s all about to change though, isn’t it, Ted? Soon, the magic of our long brewing moment will fizzle.” I nod accordingly. It starts at my waist. So more like a bow doubling as a nod. “But that’s okay. That’s what we signed up for. It has to happen like this. That’s what makes the whole thing so special. It’s either the fall will dent the earth, or the surface of the sun gains an occupant.”
It’s hot with this neck collar on. I hate it. It’s so damn stifling. I lean forward, slightly, searching for a modicum of comfort. I must be careful since the slightest of movements in the wrong direction could be severely agitating. Gingerly, I stand up looking like I’m Doozer. My bones crack. My misery grows. I can’t even imagine getting old and feeling like this all of the time.
“Don’t fret, I can still dunk.”
Once I’m totally extended I let out a fairly unfavorable wince, and quickly grab at the neck collar to alleviate some of the stress riddling my now rigid body.
“Better stick with Bird for now.”
At least Doozer will be happy.
Disgusted with my predicament I mosey over to a table with vapor trails coming from it. The view gets a tad smokey, but only for a few seconds. Slowly, calmly, faith restored in humanity, I retreat back to my resting spot and plop back down on the couch in one swift YOLO type movement.
I pick right back up where I left off.
“Ya know, Ted, I’d be lying if I told you our date hasn’t been circled on quite a few calendars of mine. That said, I plan on going out of my way to make sure ours is a night neither of us will ever forget. I have my tuxedo. I paid for the limousine. I got a bunch of ecstasy. But of course, I can’t get my bow tie on.” I gesture at the 1-800 neck brace. “Talk about a pimple on prom night.”
I’d shrug if I could. The collar prevents me. Use your imagination.
“No matter. I won’t stand you up like it’s your Senior Year. Turns out I want to hold victory over your head so badly that I don’t care how many pictures you want to take– I’ll suffer through it all. I know what is at stake. My foreskin could be stuck in the zipper and I’m still going to be there to hand you your corsage.”
The company man never sits one out. Golden ticket safety net or not. Plus, Ted’s parents probably spent a lot of money on that pretty candied cardinal dress of his. I’d hate for it to go to waste.
“Friday, the whatever. MGM Grand Garden Arena. The ‘should be main event of the evening’ won’t be about golden tickets, Al Masy, eggs, neck braces, bandits, Mom, your little bro Alex, or that pit we both climbed out of. It’ll be about you and me, and the fact you always remember your first.”
One of the Seven Seas
My Old Friend
“The sea was angry that day my friends.” — Zeb’s Journal, January 1st, 2022.
…as he floated… adrift and starting his new year without a paddle… a mirage appeared. One that luckily for the darling albatross, came true.
“Great Turduckens ghost! Is that Laser!?!”