Posted on March 17, 2024 at 10:48 pm by Hugo Scorpio

Dastardly Dan’s Smokehouse.  Opened in 2017 by Dastardly Dan himself, Roy Briggs.  A half a mile from Dry Gulch, a tourist attraction outside of Cody, Wyoming where, from April until September, they run Old West Shows including a good old fashioned gunfight between Sheriff Wild Bill Cody and the Dastardly Dan Gang consisting of Dastardly Dan, Stinky Joe, the Ginger Kid, “Mad Millie” Walsh, and Crooked Dick.  The latter was the nom-de-plume that was provided to Hugo Scorpio until he left the tourist attraction business a few short months ago.  It was safe to say that they took some dramatic historical liberties with the “Wild Bill” Cody character.

Dastardly Dan’s Smokehouse had all the earmarkings of a barbeque restaurant.  It looked like it was built in the early twentieth century, the tables were basically picnic tables with benches scattered throughout the establishment.  If not for the state of the art kitchen, smoker, light fixtures, televisions, restrooms, and POS systems, it looked like it belonged between a barber shop and a brothel.

The door swung open and Hugo Scorpio swaggered into the restaurant.  He donned his performative apparel – a long tan duster, black Stetson, tan chaps over his black pants, and black snakeskin boots, a toothpick in his mouth, he glared at the patrons.  A young hostess approached with a sunny disposition and the squeaky, mouse-like voice that felt like an audio knife being driven into his brain via the ear canal.


HOSTESS: Welcome to  Dastardly Dan’s.  Just one?

HUGO SCORPIO: I’m a-lookin’ fer that no good, lily livered varmint, Dastardly Dan.

HOSTESS: You know Dastardly Dan isn’t real, right?


Leave it to this dimwitted tart to cause Hugo to completely break character.  Instead of attempting to double down on the schtick, he dropped the performance.


HUGO SCORPIO: Is Roy here?

HOSTESS: Oh! He’s at the bar. By the way, I love the makeup!  So realistic!  


She pointed to the scarred face of Hugo.  Rather than correct her and provide another elaborate and fantastical story on how it happened, he nodded politely and headed over to the bar.  Standing behind the bar was Roy Briggs.  Sure enough, he was sporting his standard garb of black sequin shirt with tan trim, the back cowboy hat, and black cowboy boots.  But he had changed.  His handlebar mustache had been replaced by a stubble.  


HUGO SCORPIO: Dastardly Dan!  You no-good, leadfooted, sidewinder!


Roy looked over towards the XPro Main Event.  The recognition was apparent and Roy smiled showing off his large pearly whites.


ROY BRIGGS: CROOKED DICK! You half blind sumbitch! Get on over here!


Hugo Scorpio could not help but smile.  While Roy Briggs portrayed murderous outlaw for tourists, he was actually quite gregarious and friendly.  Hugo headed up to the bar and gave his old “gang leader” a brotherly hug.


ROY BRIGGS: I can’t believe it! Crooked Dick! 

HUGO SCORPIO: I fuckin’ hated that name then, I hate it now. Makes it sound like I got  a misshapen dick.

ROY BRIGGS:  Hey!  It was either that or Dirty Dick. Ain’t it better to have a broken penis than a smelly one?

HUGO SCORPIO: They both ain’t great options.

ROY BRIGGS: Ya ask me, better it’s broken than dirtier than a hog rollin’ around in shit.

HUGO SCORPIO: How’s business?

ROY BRIGGS: We’re in the slow season, so makin’ ends meet.  How ‘bout you?  How’s the wrasslin’ business?  Kickin’ ass and takin’ names?

HUGO SCORPIO: Doin’ my thing. 

ROY BRIGGS: Get you a drink?  

HUGO SCORPIO: You know I don’t drink unless it’s after a performance.

ROY BRIGGS: One with the crew and fer yerself, yup. How about a sasparilla? 

HUGO SCORPIO:  I’m good.

ROY BRIGGS: Ain’t been the same without you.  The new Crooked Dick we got?  He sucks ass. If’n ya need some extra income, could really use ya come tourist season.

HUGO SCORPIO: I’m gettin’ paid pretty good, sorry.

ROY BRIGGS: Ya gotta do what’s right fer you.  

HUGO SCORPIO: Walsh been around? 

ROY BRIGGS: Oh shit, ya didn’t hear? She’s over’n Rock Springs now.  She left not long after you. Teachin’ art history.



Hugo felt like he had been punched in the gut.  “Mad Millie” Walsh, Kim Beatrice, was one of the people he needed to visit.  She and Hugo had connected over certain aspects of their lives, they were friends, until about two weeks before he had left.


ROY BRIGGS: Ya can’t blame her.

HUGO SCORPIO: Yeah, naturally.

ROY BRIGGS: I know you were quite smitten with her.

HUGO SCORPIO: We were just friends.

ROY BRIGGS: I ain’t arguin’ that. Look, Dick, I know you enough to know that back then, you had a thing for her.  It was obvious. Shit, even Stinky Joe commented on it and he’s a fuckin’ idiot. An’ I ain’t meanin’ no disrepect here but you had a shot, more than one, you just plum didn’t take’em. 

HUGO SCORPIO: Look at my face. You think she woulda wanted someone that looks like this?

ROY BRIGGS: See, that’s your problem right there. You let that mild deformity define you. Yeah, sure, you meet someone new it’s the first thing they notice, but after time, it’s hardly noticeable. I barely see that shit now.

HUGO SCORPIO: Easy for to say, you don’t get stared at, you don’t get people askin’ you how your face got burned. And if they don’t fuckin’ ask, you know they wanna. 

ROY BRIGGS: I ain’t sayin’ that shit’s all wine and roses. Difference here is, you are usin’ it as a detriment, ya see. You should use it as a-a-a positive. That there makes you interestin’. I got this scar over the ol’ tum-tum from when I had that appendicitis. I show that shit off, you know what I tell’em? Especially these hot little tourist numbers? That Hal shot me cuz I got a bigger than him and eight times outta twelve, they wanna see it. 


Hal Chesterton, the man who has played Wild Bill in the tourist shows at Dry Gulch since 2009. He was rugged man with a face chiseled from stone.  He had that old cowboy look and swagger.  Unfortunately, he was also a massive asshole who treated the other performers like a tissue drenched in snot.  On one occasion, Hal even mentioned to some people that the HOW wrestler “put the UGH in Hugo”.  It was safe to say that Hugo despised Hal.

Of course, unbeknownst to Roy Briggs, Hugo had been lying about his injury for years. It was less about being interesting and more about hiding the truth. The difference between he and Roy was Roy could put a shirt on over his scar, Hugo would need a hockey mask to cover his….and that’s not scary in the least….


HUGO SCORPIO: It ain’t the same thing. 

ROY BRIGGS: It’s all about the state of mind. You got to recalibrate yer thinkin’.

HUGO SCORPIO: What’s that prick Hal doing anyway?

ROY BRIGGS: Who gives a fuck? Don’t change the subject. What’s goin’ on? I heard you got this LDS match or some shit comin’ up. If ya needed to talk you got my number.

HUGO SCORPIO: I’m haven’ a, whaddyacallit, crisis of confidence. I’m strugglin’ to find my place there. I’m facin’ these Hall of Famers, half of ‘em are anyway, and I’m just this fuckin’ loser freak.

ROY BRIGGS: I should slap the shit outta you for spoutin’ that nonsense. That’s your daddy talkin’. That’s Hal talkin’. That’s that fuckin’ shit stain talkin’.


ROY BRIGGS: That tourist fuck, you remember? With the big titties.


ROY BRIGGS: That shit fuck said some might horrible things ‘bout you. Some shit ‘bout makin’ her Hello Kitty say goodbye after lookin’ at you. Horrible. You can’t let that negative shit deep in.


Hugo heard it at the time. He did not get it. It was the Ginger Kid who told him it was a sexual reference and proceeded to tell him that he knew a prostitute that would screw anyone, including Hugo, for the right price. Hugo was not overly fond of the Ginger Kid.  But the insult stung. Luckily, he had Roy/Dastardly Dan, Joe/Stinky Joe, and Kim/”Mad Millie” Walsh to support him. 


HUGO SCORPIO: I remember.



Roy walked behind the bar and poured two shots from a nondescript brown bottle. He slid one in front of Hugo.


HUGO SCORPIO: I told you, I—

ROY BRIGGS: Trust me, you need this.



Roy immediately interrupted Hugo by raising his glass and pronounced a toast he was all too familiar with.


ROY BRIGGS: Friends are the family that we choose. I am honored to be among friends. Remember, pain makes you stronger. Tears make you courageous. Heartbreak makes you wiser. Here’s to the shot that, like my my friends, will help me forget’em all! Annnnnnd…..


Hugo sighed and lifted his glass.




Hugo and Roy downed their respective shots.  Hugo felt the burn of the whiskey and the odd aftertaste it left behind. Hugo winced and looked at the proprietor of the restaurant.


HUGO SCORPIO: Oh fuck.  What the fuck. What is that?

ROY BRIGGS: It’s from my cousin’s distillery. It’s raspberry-chockecherry whiskey.

HUGO SCORPIO: Blaaaeeech. Choke is right. I’ll be chokin’ on my own puke in a couple minutes. Fuckin’ nasty.

ROY BRIGGS: That’s cuz you got no ‘ppreciation for fine Wyoming whiskey.

HUGO SCORPIO: No, it straight up sucks.

ROY BRIGGS: Don’t be deflectin’ any of yer negative energies on this here whiskey.


ROY BRIGGS: C’mon. What’s really eatin’ at you, C.D.?

HUGO SCORPIO: I guess, it started with this jar.


HUGO SCORPIO: Yeah, a jar.

ROY BRIGGS: What was in the jar? Moonshine or human eyeballs or some shit?

HUGO SCORPIO: No, it was empty.

ROY BRIGGS: It was an empty jar.

HUGO SCORPIO: Yeah, look, shut the fuck and lemme explain. A few weeks ago, I lost this match to that cheatin’, dirty, fuckin’, motherfuckin’, piece of shit douchebag FUCK, Charles de Lacy and gives me this empty fuckin’ jar. For what? Just to rub it my face that he beat me? No fuckin’ clue. It was really irritatin’ carryin’ the fuckin’ thing around.

ROY BRIGGS: The jar?

HUGO SCORPIO: Yeah, the fuckin’ jar. Keep up.

ROY BRIGGS: Come on.

HUGO SCORPIO: It really bothered me.  Why would this prick just hand me a jar? So, I had it my bag, goin’ town to town with this fuckin’ thing. Then, one night, I couldn’t sleep.  I don’t know how it happened but there I was, sittin’ in a Motel 6 at three in the mornin’, then it hit me. I was that jar. Charles de Lacy as sayin’ I was this jar. Sturdy. Strong. But empty. Without substance. That’s how he saw me, that’s how the fans see me, that’s my image. I’m just some scarred up monster with no substance. Like a fuckin’ zombie. But that ain’t me.  That can’t be me, right?  I-I just can’t figure out who….


Hugo trailed off as he looked at the filthy mirror behind the shelves of alcoholic beverages behind the bar.  He could almost make out his shape through the dirty film over his reflection.  Roy cocked an eyebrow and gave a little smirk.


ROY BRIGGS: You come all this way because of a fuckin’ jar, that it? Holy shit. C’mon, C.D.!  This is your problem. You get in your own head sometimes.  Just cuz you seen a crack baby don’t mean you’re the daddy!  It’s like that Freud said, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, a crack pipe is just a crack pipe, and an empty jar is an empty jar.

HUGO SCORPIO: Crack baby?

ROY BRIGGS:  Shit, I was watchin’ one of them police shows the other night and they were arrestin’ some crackhead momma. Point is, who gives a fuck what this Charles de Lacy does? Who the fuck is he? You’re “Crooked Dick” McGirk! 

HUGO SCORPIO: Hugo Scorpio.

ROY BRIGGS: Exactly!  You go into this here, what is it?  LDS Match?

HUGO SCOPRIO:  LSD Championship.

ROY BRIGGS: Like the hallucinogen.


ROY BRIGGS: My cousin Harland did it once.  Said he thought ants with his mother’s face on them were attemptin’ to eat his flesh while tellin’ him she was gonna whoop his hide and something about seein’ Jesus’s shadow. It was pretty messed up.  Anyways, you go into this LSD match and you go up to your opponent—

HUGO SCORPIO: Opponents, actually.  There’s four of ‘em.

ROY BRIGGS: One, four, a hundred, don’t matter. I got faith in you.  You go up to uh, what’s one these jokers’ names?

HUGO SCORPIO: Scott Stevens.

ROY BRIGGS: You walk up to this Scott Stevens, get in his face, real close-like and say, “Fuck you, Scott Stevens! I’m Hugo Motherfuckin’ Scorpio!”.  Then the next guy, who’s that?

HUGO SCORPIO: There’s Drew Mitchell, Teddy Palmer, Jace Parker—-

ROY BRIGGS:Fine, you tell those three motherfuckers what’s what, as well, ya hear me?  Which one of them is the champion?


ROY BRIGGS: Jace, huh? Well, you go up to this Jace and spit in his motherfuckin’ eye. That right there is assertin’ your dominance. You’re lettin’ him know you’re the Alpha Dog. 

HUGO SCORPIO: Spit in his face.  That’s your advice.

ROY BRIGGS: I woulda suggested pissin’ on ‘em, but that right there would be considered indecent. My advice is, don’t dwell on shit you can’t control. Bring out that inner “Crooked Dick” McGerk. What was on his wanted poster?

HUGO SCORPIO: Murder, assault, and armed robbery.

ROY BRIGGS: How much was that reward?


ROY BRIGGS: See, you need to find that inner “Crooked Dick” inside of you.

HUGO SCORPIO: Do you have to put it like that?

ROY BRIGGS: Don’t turn this into something smutty!  I expect that sorta dirty mind from the Ginger Kid, not you. Point is, you need to find that aggressive, nasty sumbitch inside of you and unleash it on those fucks.

HUGO SCORPIO:  There is somethin’ of a flaw with that.

ROY BRIGGS: Which is?

HUGO SCORPIO: “Wild Bill” Cody kicked our asses week in and week out because that’s what was in the script.

ROY BRIGGS: And “Wild Bill” wasn’t a giant dildo like Hal and you coulda easily kicked fuckin’ shit outta him any time you wanted.  

HUGO SCORPIO: Yeah, well, I should.

ROY BRIGGS: So soon? C’mon! Hang out some more.

HUGO SCORPIO: Nah, I should go.

ROY BRIGGS: You want I should let Walsh know you came around?


ROY BRIGGS: Somethin’ happen betwixt you two?


ROY BRIGGS: Fine. Don’t tell me. Happy trails, C.D. and don’t be a stranger.

HUGO SCORPIO: It was good seein’ ya.


Roy poured himself another raspberry-chokecherry whiskey, raised up his glass towards Hugo and downed the shot.  Hugo gave a respectful tug of his hat and made his way towards the exit hoping not to have another interaction with the annoyingly chipper hostess.

For the most part, Hugo was satisfied with his conversation with Roy.  It gave him a lot to think about.  Why should he give two shits about the opinions of anyone else, especially Charles de Lacy, Jace Parker Davidson, Teddy Palmer, Drew Mitchell, or anyone else?  

Maybe he allowed himself to get himself all anxious and insecure over a jar that probably meant nothing.  But then again…..


Hugo needed to push those thoughts aside.  Purge them.  Repress them.  Hell, he wanted to march back into that bar, down the entire bottle of that nasty, vile whiskey in hopes he passed out and the alcohol killed whatever braincells held those doubts.  Yes, he had been questioning himself a lot lately.  So much so, he took a flight to Wyoming when he should have been watching tape, training, working on his offense and counters.  

Hugo promised one thing….

If he made it out of “March to Glory” the LSD Champion and Charles de Lacy loses his fourway match, Hugo would rub the LSD Championship in his stupid douche face and then crack him over his stupid douche head with that jar.


That stupid fucking jar.