This War Is No Game
The gleam of the evening light coming in the window can be seen reflecting off the sharp edges of barbed wire that is revealed as the camera zooms out to weaving in and out of the chain link fence that surrounds a beat up ring. Somewhere in a warehouse in New York City, The Hardcore Artists sits in the middle of this ring on a black steel chair clutching onto his trusty weapon of over a decade in HOW… a barbed wire wrapped hockey stick. His trademark paint splatter bandanna now replaced with one of army camo and his black jeans with red anarchy symbol are also now army camo in color with a forest green anarchy symbol on the thigh.
Scottywood is ready for War… because one does not take War for granted. One does not tread blindly into something that will change your life forever. Something that despite giving it everything you have, will likely not be enough and leave you broken… or even worse. Scotty gave it his all at Refueled IV when he faced off against his War Games teammate Max for a shot at Halitosis’ HOW World Title. Despite everything The Hardcore Artist gave, Max again came out on top and went on to defeat Halitosis for the HOW World Title.
As the HOW website said earlier today. “Beating Max Kael is easier said than done.”
“I told you all that Max Kael was going to be a challenge, I knew I was up against a huge wall. The kind of wall that no man or woman could get through. Shit, maybe we should be working to put a wall of Max Kael clones at the Southern border… if you’re of the kind that believe we should. Because Max again stood tall and proved to be a force that I could not get past. Nor could Halitosis repeat that feat two week later when lost the HOW World Title to Max Kael in a brilliant main event between two of the very best in HOW at this moment. Two men I am happy to be going to war with on August third.”
Turning his head towards another side of the barbaric cage structure, he seems to be trying to leave his match with Max in the past. Though no matter how many times he gets that close… only to fucking blow it… the sting never gets any less. But as he always does… he powers fucking through it and onto the next match. The next fight.
“Now the focus shifts… from comrades… to a foe… and a free agent…”
Scotty pauses for a moment and chuckles… in the kind of way where he pissed… but also impressed with the booking genius.
“Don’t think for a second Lee I don’t know what you’re trying to do here. Because we’ve been doing this shit together for what? Over ten years now. I can see your mind scheming and plotting away. Maneuvering your chips around the board so that your Alliance is in the best possible place come War Games. How many times did we load the deck when we were The Best Alliance?”
“You book the man who is the most coveted free agent right now for the one… known… War Games spot left on each team against I’m sure the man you see as the weak link on Mike’s team. Then add in one of the hottest prospects on your team, MJ Flair. She just came off beating Hollywood and Savage in a tag match with Troy and I just came off a loss to Max Kael where I again came so close… but failed to capture a shot at the HOW World Title.”
He still won’t…. Can’t… let that lose go. But that shit is gonna fuel him this week. It’s going to fuel him in War Games.
“You hope you’ll show Sektor how your team is the strongest… that he should be joining you and your Alliance. Hoping you’ll get one over Mike and he’ll have to select from the remains like Stevens, Zion and Hollywood to fill out his team… which is bullshit. Cause despite a few wins… and one was only cause of a DQ… Sektor has really proven nothing in this era while the other three have been busting their asses. But hey, why start rewarding loyalty. I mean you’ve turned your back on everyone that has helped you build your machine over the past decade. And going into what could be the last every War Games you are putting your money… your mouth… your name Best behind men and women who have done nothing for the HOW name… and in fact one who would have loved to see if die a few years ago.”
What? This is fucking wrestling and people have held grudges for a lot less shit. So if anyone thinks that a man who bled HOW through and fucking through for eight years is going to forgive and forget sworn enemies of it… you’re fucking crazy.
“Don’t get me wrong… I’m not saying there is no talent on your team. Flair, Dane and Troy are nothing to fucking cough at and I see why you’ve picked them. They are new, they are fresh and they have a fucking drive to prove something in HOW. Meanwhile on Mike’s team you have two Hall of Famers and someone who is running circles around everyone in HOW and OCW in Farthington. Plus there is Halitosis who captured the HOW World Title in only his fifth match ever in HOW. It’s a team of experience and skill… but are we more driven than your team? Are we more hungry?” Questions Scotty as he shrugs a bit and twist his hockey stick in his hand a few times pondering the question himself. It’s not one with an easy answer.
Standing up from the chair with his hockey stick, Scotty walks towards the steel cage. Placing the stick up against it he grabs one of the barbed wire strands woven through the steel mesh and smiles
“Experience versus youth. It is an age old battle. One you’re lucky if you can find yourself on both sides of during your career. And it’s one that MJ Flair is a poster child for right now in HOW. Just nineteen years of age… she can’t even drink a fucking beer.”
What kind of fucking living Hell is that?
“Weighing in at just a hundred and thirty-five pounds, she is lucky if she is half the size of some of the people she’ll be facing at War Games. From the small and quaint town of Warwick, New York, she might not even understand the Hell of traveling back and forth across the country… or across the world. Every week. Just to put your body through fucking Hell for the entertainment of people who could really care less if you died in the middle of that ring trying to score a victory. A victory that you only hope gets you one step closer to a championship which is all your fucking living for.”
Someone might be starting to get a bit bitter in his elder age. Where is his beer and who the fuck has neglected to stock that cage with them? Even during War there isn’t supposed to be inhumane torture.
“But despite all that going against MJ on the surface… she has shown a fucking drive that many go an entire career without having. Cruising through mediocrity and enjoying the fact they are just there. Not the best… not the worst… but just there. MJ seems like she may just have that spark to ignite past being just a flash in the pan. Like so many others have over the years in HOW. Sure… the first explosion is impressive… but what do you follow it up with? MJ has a chance to make a huge fucking mark against not one… but two HOW Hall of Famers this week.”
“Don’t fucking waste your chance. You fuck this shit up and it could be game over in HOW. And I’ll pull no fucking shots because off your gender and I will step into that ring with the fullest intentions to tear every inch of flesh from your fucking body and spill every ounce of your blood onto that canvas. Ask Kirsta Lewis, Bobbinette Carey, Tara Davidson and Carmen Jennings… bet no one has heard that last name in a while.”
Scotty smirks, actually pondering for a second where the fuck Carmen Jennings is… and Static too… someone get some posters out… or hashtags on the Twits and find those two.
“But I’m sure I don’t have to fucking lecture you about men versus women. You know what your getting into and just like everyone does in HOW… it’s a hundred percent pedal to the fucking floor every match no matter who the opponent is. Because it is War Games season and I plan on not fucking up my chance in that glorious structure of painful delight. I don’t plan on letting Mike Best down in what some may think was a stretch and certainly a surprise pick for his team.” Smiles Scotty loving all the doubters out there. Loving everyone who doesn’t think he fucking has it and that he is nothing more than a fucking joke.
Blood starts to run down Scotty’s arm as he grips the barbed wire tighter with each passion soaked word coming from his mouth. Not because he is trying to intimidate anyone. You really think anyone in HOW is intimidated by anyone? Let alone the two Scotty is facing this week? Sektor is a Hall of Famer, three time World champion, the former Gold Standard. MJ Flair stepped into the ring against two men twice her size and walked out victorious in her very first HOW match. Don’t think she is scared easily.
“The joke will be on Lee… and everyone else after War Games when the man who will not fucking lay down and die, The Hardcore Artist shows that he’s not ready to lay his career down in the grave just yet. You want to figure out what fucking team to join for War Games? Well I’ll fucking show you Sektor. I’ll soak your Gold Standard in fucking blood and prove that when you’re locked inside of a War Games cell… there is only one team you will want to be on.”
Letting go of the cage wall Scotty picks his hockey stick back up and starts smashing it against the cage wall, over and over and over again up the wooden stick starts to splinter apart and we see the blade fly off and nearly take out the brave cameraman inside the cage.
“Triple threat rules mean no fucking DQ and I plan to take full fucking advantage of that come Refueled. It means my trusty hockey stick is legal. It means barbed wire is legal. It means I can do whatever I want… just like I will come War Games. Hope you enjoyed your happy go lucky intro to HOW last week MJ… because now shit is real. Now you’re jumping into the fucking deep end and you will sink in a pool of you’re own fucking blood. Hope you schemed that out Lee. Hope you fucking planned to only get a portion of MJ Flair back after this match because I promise the rest of her is going to left in bloody clumps on the barbed wire of my fucking hockey stick.”
Discarding the remains of his hockey stick Scotty grabs the steel chair and throws that against the cage igniting a loud crackling of steel on steel as he starts pacing around the ring to just try and burn off some of the energy in his body before he spontaneously combusts in front of our very eyes.
“Like I said MJ… you may have youth on your side. You may have that drive of someone who is looking to make a name for themselves. Trying to carve out their own notch in the history books. But what I have is something you can not even imagine yet. It is the taste of desperation. The thought that this may be my last chance to capture that one big victory that everyone remembers forever in the history of HOW. Sure I have a few… moments… but not something that is ICONIC… not something that is immortal… not something that no one can fucking question. War Games. That is THE FUCKING MATCH where no one can fucking question shit about you!” Screams Scotty as the pacing is getting more and more erratic in the fucking cage. Someone get that man a fucking beer before he….
Grabbing the cage wall Scotty starts smashing his forehead into the barbed wire over and over again as the blood starts to flow down his face.
“I’m fucking done being you’re fucking joke! I’m fucking finished being the guy you all chuckle at! I’m fucking done being the one who is always just there. I’m done being the one you all fucking question about being in the HOW Hall of Fame! I AM A FUCKING HOW HALL OF FAMER and you fuckers are going to see why!” Continues to scream Scotty as he claws his hand over his face, smearing the blood across it before slamming his head into the steel a few more times.
“I’m out of time for playing fucking Games and ready for just fucking War to get what I want in HOW. I’m sorry MJ but you can try and say there will be other chances for you after this match… after War Games… if you make it through them. But this one is mine. This match is going to The Hardcore Artist and I don’t fucking care what anyone says. As for you John… you know which team you want to be on. Choose wisely… because if you choose… poorly… then you will have Holy hell to go through just to fail in capturing that Grail of winning War Games.”
Collapsing down to his knees the blood continues to run down the face of The Harcore Artist.
Finally the cage door opens and in clumsily stumbles Frankie trying not to touch the walls as if they are lava. He rushes over to Scotty and hands him and open can of Tree House Single Shot… a 6.4% ABV Coffee Milk Stout. Grabbing the can, Scotty starts to down the beer as if it’s fucking spinach and he pops up off the ring mat as Frankie falls back in some horrid attempt at acting shocked.
“The pressure if on you MJ… but it’s on me too… it’s on me a lot more. For my career has already been made. It will be remembered in the history books of HOW… of all wrestling. That is a fucking fact no one can argue. But it’s how it will be written that is still up in the air. You have nothing to lose in this match and War Games… while I have… well a lot. You have you’re whole life… your whole career still in front of you… while I certainly don’t. My career has got to be near the end… and let’s just be honest about the life expectancy of someone who has done what I’ve done for the past twenty years.”
From driving a Zamboni off a loading dock at the start of the millennium… to crucifixion matches…. War Games…. Battle Domes… House of Pain… we could go on all fucking night here. How Scotty’s body is still in one piece… let alone alive is a matter for scientists to study for decades to come.
“Sektor has his career etched in Gold already… I’m sure he wants that War Games notch in his belt too… but will anyone think more or less of him if he doesn’t? No. What will it do for me? What will it do for Scottywood if he wins War Games this year and becomes World Champion in a way that no one can fucking question? Think about that MJ… think about that Sektor. Because I do. Every fucking day. Every fucking night.”
Dreams… nightmares… premonitions… call it whatever you want. He can see himself winning War Games. He knows that this is his last chance and nothing can stand in his way.
“While it may be called War Games… this is no fucking game Sektor. So don’t be fucking around. You join team Mike Best and you give it every fucking thing you have. Then you can walk away winning War Games. Fuck around and think Lee’s Standard is better… well then I promise no one on your fucking team will see Gold after War Games.”
Having enough of the cage, Scotty starts to make his way to the exit as Frankie reaches out towards his adopted father… but Scotty pushes him away… nearly into the barbed wire. He wants nothing to do with anyone unless it has to do with winning War Games… or beer.
Walking down the makeshift wooden steps Scotty flings his nearby cooler open and pulls out the first beer he can find, a can of Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA and cracks the fuckers open and starts downing the 9% DIPA before looking back at the demonic cage behind him. He smiles. The War has begun and it is going to be a fucking blood bath until the very end.