Oh, you’re here!
It’s been a while, has it not? An ICONIC age, if I do say so myself since we last revelled in the tales of the ChampChamp and all around wonderful human male, the HOW World AND World Tag Team Champion, Cecilworth M. J! Farthington. So much has happened in his life since we last met.
He broke a man’s arm.
A bunch of LEGENDS disrupted his completely perfect commentary to hit him with their cool sweet moves.
He broke a man’s arm.
Lee Best tried to give him a surprise title match with some kind of monster man but Cecilworth somehow outsmarted him in this particular situation, which is concerning in and of itself.
He broke a man’s arm.
Cecilworth made it very clear to the entire field of the Lee Best Invitational who they would be facing at the end of the line. He did this through using his mouth and tongue to convey messages that could be mildly construed as “threatening.”
Oh, and he broke a man’s arm! Did I mention that one yet?
We’ll come back to that in a moment, it may be important to today’s rich narrative. Strap yourself in ladies and gentleman, it’s time for some world’s apart storytelling!
The Five Time Academy, home of Mike Best’s famous training schedule of “beat up the trainees whenever you feel a bit sad” – a technique that has been openly embraced by his eMpire compatriots CM!JF and Max Kael at various points over the last year – is the location currently home to many aspiring industry hopefuls… and Brian Hollywood. No one is really sure what Brian does at Five Time; Cecilworth keeps insisting that he puts up a sign-up sheet for “Super Secret Assassin Training” on the wall where he is the only signee but that has yet to be proven.
As the location that is in place to best serve the whims and needs of the eMpire, the training ring currently has a ladder set-up inside. Many of the Academy trainees are trying to experiment with ladder modification under the strict guidance that it must help Max, in his current… unique… form to be able to climb the runged beast at an appropriate victory velocity. They’ve gone through a few designs already – the most promising being installing a ramp across one side so Max could just wheel his way to the top. Unfortunately, the small flaw with this plan was the fact Max possess legs, not wheels. For now.
The exciting world of ladder design is a mere backdrop to our story today, though. A fun diversion indeed but not a matter of the utmost importance. No, instead we find ourselves in the janitor’s closet of the Five Time Academy that Cecilworth has taken over as his office in the establishment. He certainly isn’t living in the closet ever since his father passed away due to a tragic fivehead incident. He doesn’t sleep on the office table at night because he fired the one person in his life who actually managed his finances and knew where his money was actually located (and indeed how money itself works), in Dirk Dickwood.
That would be silly.
The Undisputed Gentleman’s Gentleman, Cecilworth M! J Farthington sits with a ponderous look upon his face as he closely inspects the letter that has just been presented to him by Five Time Trainee Gary Tongueman, DDS. Tongueman has remained cowering in the corner since the letter delivery, very aware of our hero’s proclivity to get all arm yanky to those who have displeased him at the Academy.
Also those who have pleased him.
Farthington: So tell me Toothboy…
Farthington scrunches his face, creating a similar look to that if a dog had just shat on your dining room table and then, as a final act, wafted a honking fart directly into your face. That kind of look.
Farthington: Exactly what I said. So, this letter that you appear to have procured for me, when did it arrive at the esteemed Academy of the Five Time Arts?
Tongueman: It arrived first thing this morning.
Farthington slams his hand against the desk.
Farthington: THIS MORNING? I was in this very office this morrow, why have you waited until now to hand me this disgusting filth?
Tongueman: It kind of looked like you may… may… have been sleeping on the desk, sir… maybe. It’s… it’s how it looked!
The pained look on the World Champion’s face upgrades from “dog farts” to “stabbing your own grandmother in front of you” on levels of “looking to murder” someone. Cecilworth leaps out of his chair and menaces his way towards the young Tongueman. All too wise to the actions and intent of CM!JF, he wisely sprints right out of the “office” of the champ.
And right into one of the experimental Max Kael ladders.
A ladder which just has spikes jutting out of the sides of it. Tongueman slams his arm right into one of the spikes, cutting it wide open as a bemused Cecilworth observes the situation. The champ looks over to one of the trainees currently on ladder duty.
Farthington: How are spikes meant to help Max climb the ladder?
The trainee simply shrugs his shoulders and goes back about his business as a screeching Tongueman continues to drip blood all over the Academy floor. Cecilworth looks down at the blood.
Farthington: Someone should probably clean that up. It’s a slipping hazard.
The law offices of Alfred Smythe are hardly the most hustling and bustling in Chicago. This may be due to the Google Reviews of old Al mostly all concluding with, “he is as inept as all fuck.” Tends to impact the reputation a little.
The one important thing to know about Alfred Smythe, much like The Herald of Max Kael of days past, is he is a cousin of Farthington and a product of the rich line of the family that has produced an endless array of winners in the current generation. What with our fancy lad’s current lack of knowing how to spend money or where such things exist, his cousin seems like the best bet in advising on his current pickle, whether he be “fucking useless” or not.
Remember that one time there was a whole adventure where Max and Cecilworth tried to use an ATM?
It was very unsuccessful.
So Alfred Smythe would have to do.
Smythe: So, what can you tell me about this Mr. Newell?
Farthington: He’s a shitty alcoholic with a small penis.
The speed at which that sentence ejects from the mouth of the champ implies a visceral gut hatred of a basically useless drunken old commentator. No idea where that comes from, to be quite honest with you. Smythe, for his part, also appears perplexed by this response.
Smythe: So.. you’ve… you’ve seen his penis?
Most attorneys would turn the attention back to the matter at hand; not Al though. Al again, I must stress, not very good at his job.
Farthington: No, but it just seems right. I think that it would be true. You know what I mean? Like sometimes you just get the essence of a man, and you think to yourself, “sorry about your shitty tiny dick.” You know what I mean right? You get it! You get it…
Smythe: I… I’m not entirely sure what I’m supposed to be getting.
CM!JF has a hearty chuckle on his way to replying.
Alfred taps the letter passed on from Tongueman that currently sits atop his office table.
Smythe: So based on this, you forced a retired and very elderly wrestling commentator into a match…
Farthington: Which he agreed to.
Smythe: While he was so drunk he couldn’t possibly make his own rational decisions.
Farthington: His word is legally binding.
Smythe: And after the quote unquote wrestling match, you decided to break his arm.
Farthington: Poor officiating.
All of Farthington’s rapid responses to Big Al’s enquiries are terse and irritable; he is clearly a man certain he has done no wrong and the fact that anyone is trying to force consequences for his actions is causing something of an anger spiral.
Farthington: I was in the zone, you know, I’m the champ, I win ninety seven minute long Iron Man Matches, you know what I’m saying? I was in the zone, I didn’t hear the bell! It’s the referee’s job to make sure that I break the hold after the bell. All the BOTCHer guy did was stand there and look disgusted. He always looks disgusted when I successfully defend my championship though. Someone told me backstage that he’s a big Dan Ryan guy and I think that makes a lot of sense.
Old Al starts wiping his eye as he lets out a weary sigh, gently shaking his head as he does so.
Smythe: My word, this is something of a jam you find yourself in. I mean, how quickly do you want this to end?
Farthington: I would prefer for it not to exist in the first place. I mean this whole complaint looks like it was written in crayon by a five year old. No one is going to take this seriously! I’m the World Champion, my contract allows me to do what I want!
Smythe lets out another sigh.
Smythe: Your contract gives you a certain degree of flexibility in control of your match dates and opponents. It doesn’t give you the right to break the arm of an old drunk man.
Farthington: Purely hypothetical conversation… What if it was a middle-aged drunk man instead?
Smythe blinks wildly again, his head now darting from left to right in confusion and irritation.
Smythe: WHAT? NO! You can’t legally break anyone’s arm. No matter the age group or category of inebriation.
Undeterred, Cecilworth continues his investigation.
Farthington: What if we say it was an accident. For legal reasons.
Smythe: There is video footage of you forcing him into the ring, getting his intoxicated ass to agree to a match and then breaking his arm with a gleeful smile on your face. Which part of that do you think I can reasonably argue to be an accident?
The HOW World Champion carefully thinks about how to progress in the conversation, knowing this is his only way out of the current situation.
Farthington: The smile?
Ah hah! You thought I was going to go somewhere else but actually it was a trick and we remain in the law offices. All of you were made damn fools of.
The HOW World Champion leans back in his chair, arms behind his head with his feet kicked up on the table in complete and utter satisfaction of his impenetrable legal defense. Clearly knowledgeable about all things law, this long national nightmare is over.
Big Al, for his part, looks very concerned.
The ChampChamp ends up being perhaps overly relaxed as he continues to lean back further and further on the chair.
The sounds, in order, are representative of the local Chicago Policing Force slamming their way into the law offices of Alfred Smythe, quickly following by Cecilworth tipping over in his chair, slamming himself into a nearby glass cabinet. The boink is a strange noise, like that of a spring. No one can say that Alfred Smythe hides a pogo stick behind his fancy glass cabinet but it was definitely that.
Local Law Man: We have it on good authority that Mr. Cecilworth Farthington is currently in this office.
CM!JF’s eyes dart towards the PoPo with an arm-snapping degree of rage as he nurses the back of his skull very gingerly.
Farthington: Of course I’m in this office you insufferable plebeian, you just caused me to smash my head against this cabinet. Are you going to pay the replacement costs for my poor cousin Al’s furniture? Bursting in here like savages, I swear to god.
The officer pays little mind to the outburst from the HOW Tag Team (and also World) Champion, clearly intent on getting on with the job at hand. He hoists Cecilworth up from the ground.
LLM: Sir, you need to come with me.
Farthington: I need to do no such thing, isn’t that right Alfred?
Alfred, for his part, has turned a “Casper the Friendly Ghost” shade of white; the whole situation unfolding in front of him is one he has never had to deal with previously. Due to being very bad at his job. And having no clients.
Smythe: I… I think you should go… I think going with him is a good idea.
A disgusted Cecilworth shows his trademark frown towards his cousin.
Farthington: You are the most useless Alfred I’ve ever known. Batman’s butler would be more helpful and he’s entirely fictional.
Smythe: Why are you talking about Batman when the police are taking you in?
Left with no other option, Cecilworth hangs his head down low and agrees to accompany the nice man right on down to the station. As a thank you gesture to his cousin for all of the useful support he has provided, he turns back around and spits on the office floor, shaking chunks of glass free from the back of his head as he does so.
Farthington: When all of this is done Al, I will have your arm.
Smythe: …isn’t that the issue in the first place?
We find ourselves in some local Chicago police station somewhere. Google it. It’s that one. Our intrepid World Heavyweight Champion finds himself in a situation most unfamiliar to him, tossed into a holding cell with the waifs and strays of the world.
Farthington: Is this what it’s like to be a poor?
The World Champion mutters to no one in particular.
Farthington: Honest to god, can’t even break a man’s arm on national television anymore without the old Social Justice Police Force getting involved and hurling you into the poor pit. It’s political correctness gone mad.
CM!JF scans the room to see the fellow wonderful examples of humanity he is stuck in the holding cell with.
Napping drug dealer.
Napping drug user.
Napping drug dealer high on his own supply.
Yes, you are not imagining things. Nor am I for that matter. There is very much a man currently attired in Party City’s finest Batman costume sharing a cell with our wonderful champion man. The HOW World Champion looks intrigued by this arrangement and attempts to strike up a conversation.
Farthington: How does Batman end up in a place like this?
BATMAN!: Robin, Robin! I need my pills!
Cecilworth blinks a few times with his signature blink.
Farthington: Oh, yeah, I get you. Anytime Mike forgets to take his special pills he goes around thinking he’s The Green Lantern. It’s a damn sight more entertaining than the movie ever was. HA HA! That’s a quality joke!
BATMAN!: The Joker trapped me in this cell, he bribed the police force to take me in simply because I punched a bunch of randoms on the street directly in the face. It’s a nefarious plot and I need your help, Robin; it’s a good thing you’re here.
The almost almost blinking of Cecilworth quickly turns sour.
Farthington: I am no one’s Robin. I am not a sidekick, my caped friend. I am the HOW World Champion. I am The End of the LBI!
BATMAN!: Listen, Robin, I need you to get my Anti-Joker pills!
The champ’s head tilts at a forty five degree angle as he deeply pierces through the Batman with a icy stare.
Farthington: Please, call me a pathetic orphan urchin sidekick one more time. I beg of you. I have a few frustrations to work off today. First Alfred messes up my legal case…
BATMAN!: ALFRED! I NEED ALFRED!
Cecilworth rushes towards the Caped Crusader with arm-breaking malice in his eyes but manages to stop short of leaping up and locking in the arm bar. He stops and looks a little bit disappointed in himself.
Farthington: You gotta stop doing that, Cecilworth. That’s how you ended up in this mess in the first place.
A tired and emotionally confused World Champion resigns himself to the mess he currently finds himself in and takes a seat next to one of his new napping drug friends, filtering out the inane ramblings of the man who would be Batman in the background. He rocks about on the bench, trying to make himself comfortable. He runs his hand through the back of his head, plucking out the small chunks of glass he finds still resting back there, then looks at his hand, almost amused by the blood that has dried up on his fingertips.
The champ looks down to his new napping pal and attempts to strike up a conversation.
Farthington: So what are you in for? Me? Oh, I had a small incident on national television where I snapped an old alcoholic’s arm but that’s fine because I am the World Champion so I can do such things. This is all a complete and total misunderstanding and I am absolutely certain my cousin, Alfred Smythe, the best lawyer in the land will be making sure that my best friends forever in the eMpire arrive to sort this all out very soon. I need to get back to the ladder lab you see…
The complete lack of response from the snoozing gent next to CM!JF does little to deter him from continuing on as if he was in a normal human conversation with a fellow human.
Farthington: The Ladder Lab? Well, there’s these two guys… Bill and Ben… Bill and Ted… Red and Ned… err. Anyway, they have names that are a rhyming structure so that’s fun. Lee Best doesn’t like me very much and my close friend Max is basically handicapped so he forced us into a ladder match. I don’t really know why Lee doesn’t like me, I’m always nice to him on Twitter. That’s not the point, the point is Brad and Tad won their groups in something called the Lee Best Invitational and that means that they are actually rather skilled at what they do. They’re a fully fleshed tag team to boot! I mean, I assume so, I haven’t seen any evidence of it in the ring but it’s what the internet tells me.
The one person monologue is interrupted by Batman yelling, “I’M BATMAN!” The Champion deeply considers his options and tries to bury his deep seated urge to snap an arm in his “brain pit.” He gestures with his thumb to the sleepy boy next to him in the direction of Batman.
Farthington: I heard a rumour that if you eat that dude’s ass, you get the coronavirus. But we’re getting sidetracked. My friend Max is handicapped so he can’t climb ladders so good, putting us at a distinct disadvantage for defending our illustrious tag team titles. There weren’t even any tag teams when we won the belt two months ago and now all of a sudden everyone and their elderly mother wants to slam me and my friends from behind because they want the Tag Team Titles. It’s really quite rude. The good thing is, I am basically an indestructible God King in the wrestling ring. It’s kind of fun in a way, you get all these hot young studs rushing into HOW talking about how low the bar has been and how they’re just so much better than those who have toiled in the company for a god damn year since it relaunched. They claim they’ve done research but… if they had… they’d probably have noticed that I have defeated every legend of the industry who has decided to peek their head into the High Octane domain.
There’s a loud “SHUSH” that appears from the corner of the room and the same forty five degree head tilt that almost led to breaking his cousin’s arm makes another appearance.
Farthington: It’s funny, my new friend. These guys, Alexander and Tedward. One of them labels himself a “Willing Villain” and one of them thinks they are Batman. Is this where the Odd Couple music plays and everyone has a whimsically good time? While I’m on the point, doesn’t nicknaming yourself as a “Willing Villain” just ooze a complete sense of desperation? So many people have monikers slapped in front of their names because those fools are so lacking in the confidence of them as brands in and of themselves that they slap a haphazard idea of “something cool” in front of their name. What does it even mean to be a willing villain? You’ve made a life choice to be a despicable human being? Welcoming to the entire wrestling industry, pal. It’s either that or they need medication to stop them thinking they are a billionaire vigilante with a distinct hatred for the black community and no understanding of the desperation shown by the impoverished communities on why they commit low level crime in the first place. Oh no, Bruce, don’t Batarang the Pedophile Billionaires, SOMEONE STOLE A LOAF OF BREAD. You know what, FUCK BATMAN.
Cecilworth listens to his own words escaping his mouth in complete disbelief at what he just said. Batman, for his part, yells “I’M BATMAN!”
Farthington: I guess maybe prison does change a man.
Cecilworth shrugs it off and continues on his merry way.
Farthington: You’re right, friend. They did get to the LBI semi-finals and it is very true that one of them could end up standing in the ring against me at March to Glory if the cards fall in their favour. The fatal issue for our pals Red and Ted though… OH MAN THAT WAS IT. RED AND TED! Anyway, the fatal issue is greed. Their path through the LBI wasn’t enough for them. The chance at the 97Red Leather clad World Championship was not enough for them. They decided to make a pact with Leecifer himself to get a shot at the World Tag Team Champions. They decided that they were ready to stand in the ring with me, BREAKER OF ARMS…
Cecilworth screeches at the top of his voice, causing a few of the slumberers to mutter and roll around on their benches.
Farthington: To get to March to Glory, they need to beat the very best in the industry. Lindsay Troy has been on what I would call a “pants shittingly” good run in the LBI. Max Kael managed to once again show why he is the King of the event. How are our dear friends Red and Ted expecting to do that… how are they expecting to come out of a match with me unscathed and ready for battle with the very best. Arrogance, hubris, whatever you think you should call it, it sounds like idiocy to me. Ladder matches are not something to take lightly, they change people. They harm people. They can end a career in a flash if you slip and fall the wrong way. Those challengers, you’d think they’d be concerned by that. All they see is the gold at the end of the rainbow though. That’s why they will fail. Currently they have the pride, Saturday night is the fall and it will be quite a fall if I have my way.
Cecilworth chuckles at the visual image of tossing a Red and or indeed a Ted from some form of “mega ladder.”
Farthington: Do you know how many people have now walked through the door of High Octane wrestling with a complete and total confidence that they are “just better” than me. “Just better” than the industry? The wrestling industry, not the stable, I have empirical data I am “just better” than the stable. I don’t because I have lost count. I have lost count of the endless amount of bravado that ends up going nowhere. I congratulate our challengers on the journey they have made so far but defeating Brian Hollywood and Black Mamba does not a legacy make. At Refueled these gentlemen have the chance to climb the literal and proverbial ladder and you would hope they would be getting ready, making every moment count. Yet, something in my gut tells me they’re writing horrid erotic fan fiction rather than taking the time to know the record of what stands in front of you. Lee Best has thrown eight thousand barriers my way. Surprise opponents, cage matches, Iron Man matches and now a ladder match. Those on the other side ALWAYS think that I am about to fall, about to fail. The sad truth for the future dead Red and Ted, Nero has yet to fiddle, Rome is yet to burn. The eMpire still stands VERY tall and at Refueled…
The man who was the unwilling subject to Cecilworth’s intense and panicked prison ramblings slowly awakens with a very important message of encouragement for our champion.
Drug Sleep Man: WILL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP?