AF8: Stevenson Marquel vs. Joseph Greaves vs. Jason Armstrong (Mayhem Title)
The main event of Aftershock presents a Mayhem title defense against the two men who won their debut matches last week; Jason Armstrong & Joseph Greaves. Marquel is going to have a handful with these two looking to capitalise and make a name for themselves, as well as Ace Stevens on the prowl to make Stevenson's life a living hell. Will he be able to defend the title or will one of the rookies take the belt?
Deadline is Tuesday, April 17th at 11:59 PM Central Time.
The scene opens up to reveal the backstage area of ďAftershock.Ē Various wrestlers and crew members are walking around talking to each other, and the sound of the crowd cheering can be heard on the other side of the curtain. The sound of the ringing bell can barely be heard, and the muffled sounds of Selena Andersonís announcement of the winner makes the wrestlers stop for just a second before they continue their conversations.
Here is your winner: Jason Armstrong!
The cheering from the crowd grows a little louder after the announcement. Moments later, Jason Armstrong stumbles his way through the curtain to the backstage area. After a few steps, his right knee buckles and gives out on him, forcing him to crumple to the concrete floor. Several people rush to help him, but he waves them off.
Back off Ö Iím fine. Iím fine!
He tries to stand back up, but heís slow to get up. He is finally able to make it back to his feet. Armstrong tries to take a couple of steps, but he is obviously limping from the damage he suffered to his knee during his match. The pain is etched across Armstrongís face as his knee once again gives out. This time the trainers hurry to assist Armstrong to his feet, and he reluctantly accepts their assistance.
They help Armstrong into the trainerís room, and he eases himself onto the trainerís table. They remove his boot and kneepad and begin to examine his knee. Armstrong grimaces in pain as the trainers straighten his leg out and massage his knee. He lies back onto the table and runs his hands over his sweaty face. Even though the pain in his knee is almost unbearable, he canít help but smile because he made a successful debut. He knows he made the first step into getting his life back to the way it used to be. Armstrong also remembers his ex-wife saying that if he won he may get a chance to talk to his son, which makes all of the pain worth it. The trainers continue to work on his knee before wrapping it up with an ice pack.
The trainers tell Armstrong that he can leave and he gingerly gets off the table and limps out of the room. He makes his way to the locker room while favoring his knee, although much of the pain has faded away by now. He notices that the locker room is mostly empty and realizes that ďAftershockĒ ended while he was still in the trainerís room. Heís relieved that the locker room is almost vacant because he doesnít feel like talking to anyone other than his ex-wife and son. Armstrong reaches into his locker and grabs a towel and wipes his face off. He sets the towel back into the locker and pulls out his cell phone. He sees that he has a missed call and a voice message. Itís from Chelsea. He quickly calls his voice mail to get the message. He smiles when he hears his son Jeremyís voice.
Hey Daddy! I saw you on TV! That was so cool Daddy! You kicked that guyís butt!
Armstrong chuckles at what his son says, but itís obvious that only getting to hear his voice is hurting the former Olympic hopeful inside.
Mommy said that if you won I could talk to you. I was so happy that you won so I could talk to you Daddy. But you didnít answer. I miss you Daddy.
Armstrong lowers his head into his free hand and rubs his forehead trying to not show the pain he is feeling.
I havenít seen you in such a long time. I was so happy that Mommy said I could call you. But now that you didnít answer Iím sad. I hope you get to listen to this message. I love you Daddy. I hope you call Ė
Jeremy gets cut off by a voice in the background. Itís Chelsea, and she can be heard speaking angrily in the background.
Give me the phone. Give me the phone Jeremy. Itís not your fault. Itís your fatherís.
Armstrongís heart sinks as he hears her say that. She continues to speak and the anger is evident in her shaking voice.
I should have known better than to trust you, Jason. I should have never let you have the opportunity to let Jeremy down like that. Youíve disappointed him too many times in his short life, and this just adds to the list. You should have seen his face when I told him that he could call you if you won. He watched your match, and Iíve never him seen so happy as when he celebrated you winning. But now you went and ruined that just like you ruin everything. You canít do anything right, Jason. I thought you were doing this to try to prove to us that youíve changed. Well, it seems like you have changed. Youíve somehow become an even bigger screw up.
You better have a good reason for not being there for your son. I know Iíve given into some of your bullshit excuses before, but not anymore. Iíve realized that you just say what it takes to get what you want regardless of how it affects other people. I donít need that. Jeremy doesnít need that. I hope you enjoyed your win, because you really screwed this up. You had your chance to prove yourself, and you blew it. You better hope you get another chance, but even if you do, youíll probably ruin that one, too. I hope youíre happy with yourself.
She hangs up the phone and Armstrong sits there in disbelief listening to the dial tone. He looks to be contemplating the decisions heís made. He looks like heís almost in a trance sitting there in silence. Armstrong snaps back to reality when he feels a pat on his shoulder. He turns around and sees Leon Kensworth. Armstrong isnít happy to see him, but grudgingly obliges to Kensworthís request for an interview. Armstrong takes a quick sip of water he grabbed from his locker and composes himself for the interview.
Jason, how does it feel to have won your debut match in WZCW?
Jason lets out a small sigh before answering the question while trying to think of the right words.
Itís bittersweet, Leon. Of course, Iím happy to start my career in this company off with a win. WZCW is home to the best wrestlers in the world, and a win is never going to come easily here. My first match was against a great up-and-comer, and he gave me everything I could handle. I was somehow able to pull out the win in the end, but it came with a price.
How does your knee feel?
Armstrong reaches down and massages his knee for a moment.
Itís fine now. It hurt like hell earlier, though. Daniel Dela Cruz had a good strategy out there to target it, and I wouldíve done the same if I was him. My knee is fine now, but the pain I felt in it earlier has led to pain in other parts of my life. You see, Leon, when I was in the trainerís room, my son called. I wasnít able to talk to him because I was being tended to by the trainers. My ex-wife hates me even more now. Iím going to have to try harder than ever to win them back.
Youíre going to have the opportunity to do just that at the next ďAftershock.Ē Youíre going to be challenging for the WZCW Mayhem Championship. What do you think about getting this title opportunity?
Armstrong sits in quiet disbelief. Heís shocked that he is getting a title match in just his second match in the company. He lets the realization that he could be a title holder sink in before he gets to speak.
Mayhem. Thatís the perfect way to describe my life, Leon. Iíve been through hell to get to where I am today. Iíve done a lot of things Iím not proud of, and now Iím trying to right those wrongs and get my life back together. Itís only fitting that I have to cause a little mayhem to get my life in order.
Armstrong cracks his knuckles and clears his throat. He gets a crazed look in his eyes as he realizes exactly what it means to be in a Mayhem Title match.
You see, I have years of rage and anger built up inside of me. Iím angry that I missed out on my Olympic dreams. Iím angry I lost my family. Iím angry that I let them down. Most of all, Iím angry at myself for allowing all of this to happen. I blamed other people for my problems for too long, Leon, and now I have nobody to turn to other than myself. Iím not afraid of what might happen to me during a Mayhem Title match, because I can guarantee Iíve put myself through much worse. Iím going to take out some of this aggression and anger Iíve let build up in me at the next ďAftershock.Ē
Armstrong then turns his attention to the Mayhem Champion, Stevenson Marquel.
I donít dislike you Stevenson Marquel. In fact, I see a lot of myself in you. Although we come from two completely worlds, weíve made a lot of the same mistakes. You lost time to jail because of drugs; Iíve lost my family due to alcohol. Weíve both made mistakes, and weíre here to try to make things right. We have a lot in common, even though weíre completely different people.
Even though I donít dislike you, Stevenson, I do have a problem with you now that I know Iím facing you at the next ďAftershock.Ē The problem I have with you is that youíre holding the key to getting my life back. Youíre holding the key to getting my family back. My ex-wife thinks Iím a screw up, and that I canít do anything other than let people down and fail at life. Winning the Mayhem Title will prove to her that Iím not a failure. I know what it means to be in a Mayhem Title match. I am willing to torture myself if it means getting my family back. And you, Stevenson, are holding me back from proving to my ex-wife and son that I deserve another chance. And for that reason, I must take you out by any means necessary. Stevenson, youíre one of the toughest men in this business. Hell, youíre one of the toughest people on this planet, but I have too much at stake to not take the Mayhem Title from you. I have to win this match. My life Ė my family Ė is riding on it.
Armstrong is breathing heavily as a half-decadeís worth of anger is building up inside of him. Kensworth cautiously begins his next sentence.
Marquel isnít the only other wrestler in the match. Joseph Greaves, who also won his debut match tonight, is in the match, too.
Armstrong raises his eyebrows as he is surprised there is another wrestler in the match.
Greaves, huh? I didnít get to see his match tonight since I was in the trainerís room, but I do know heís one hell of a wrestler. It doesnít surprise me to see that he is also in this match. As impressive of an athlete as he is, I canít say that I like the kid. Heís an arrogant kid who thinks that he, and his home country of Australia, is better than the people of America. I donít have anything against Australia, but I donít like it when someone insults the country I live in. I was going to represent this country in the Olympics before my injury. Iím proud of this country and the people who live in it. I have to show Joseph that his perception of Americans is wrong. Thereís no better way to prove to him that heís not better than us Americans than by defeating him for the Mayhem Title.
Armstrong rubs his scruffy beard before slowly beginning his next sentence.
Iím not a fighter, Leon. Iím a wrestler. I donít need to use weapons to beat people, but that doesnít mean I wonít use any if it will get me closer to winning the Mayhem Title. I will do whatever it takes to get that title. According to my ex-wife, Iím a terrible person. And I canít say I disagree. At the next ďAftershock,Ē youíre going to get to see just how terrible of a person I can be. Youíre going to see what I am capable of doing. And, most importantly, youíre going to see me walking out of ďAftershockĒ with the Mayhem Title around my waist.
Kensworth moves the microphone away from Armstrong.
Thank you for your time. Good luck next week.
Armstrong nods his head towards Kensworth as Kensworth leaves the locker room. Armstrong leans against his locker as if he daydreaming about his match next week. He pulls out his phone to call Chelsea and try to apologize. Heís nervous as he presses send, and tries to calm himself as the phone rings. Unsurprisingly, the call goes to voice mail. Armstrong takes a deep breath before he speaks.
Hey Chelsea! Hey Jeremy! I listened to your voicemail. Iím sorry I didnít answer. I was getting my knee looked at by the trainers here to make sure your Daddy wasnít too hurt. I was so happy to get to hear from you Jeremy. I promise Iíll answer your call next time.
Chelsea, Iím so sorry, too. I know Iíve put you through a lot. I know Iíve put Jeremy through a lot, too. I know Iíve been a horrible parent and was a horrible husband. I can only imagine how devastated Jeremy was when he didnít get to talk to me. I know I messed this chance up just like I always do. But I have a chance at the next ďAftershockĒ to try to make you and Jeremy proud of me. Iím challenging for the Mayhem Title, and it would be amazing if I won. I would show you that Iím capable of so much more than I have showed you lately. I am willing to put my body through hell to prove to you that I want you back. I just want to be someone that you and Jeremy can be proud of.
I love Ė
Armstrong stops himself before he finishes his sentence.
Tell Jeremy I love him. Iíll talk to you later.
Armstrong hangs his phone up and throws it in his bag. He grabs the towel out of his locker once more and goes to get in the shower. He knows the next match is going to be a part of the most important night of his life. He knows he cannot mess up this opportunity. Armstrong knows he has to win the Mayhem Title.
A Look at Australia Part 2 Ė The People
Presented by Joseph Greaves
Brought to you by the High Society
A tiny room comes into view, three of its walls battered layers of old bricks and its final barricade a loose set of rusted steel bars. Sitting inside the grimy cell is a single man, a classic Akubra hat sitting on his noggin and his muscular arms folded across his chest. The man boldly stares at the ground for a few moments and when he calls out, he speaks with a thick Australian accent.
Joseph Greaves: Hey chief, when am I gettiní out of here?
Greaves pops his head up with his eyebrows raised and a cheeky smirk on his mug.
Joseph Greaves: Chief?
However, that smirk quickly disappears and a cold smile takes its place as Greaves gets to his feet and hurls the hat from his head into the shabby cistern besides him. Greaves thunders away from the cell and, after passing an elderly gentleman showing around an eager group of school kids, he steps through a side door and emerges out into the light. As Greaves walks quickly away from the scene and sits at a squeaky clean bench, the camera reveals that the Southern Star emerged from a ĎSpecial Guided Tour of Barwon Gaolí.
Joseph Greaves: And so my WZCW debut came and went in an instant, and I left Aftershock with the win. And just like that, with that one victory, I have already been granted a shot at glory, a chance to claim championship gold for my very own.
Greaves looks quizzically at the camera, almost unbelieving of his own words.
Joseph Greaves: In just my second week in the company I have a chance to capture the WZCW Mayhem Championship. I donít know about you dear, loyal viewers, but that seems just a little unusual. Maybe the higher-ups have already realised just how good I am, and believe me I am damn good, but I think there is a little more to it than that. They are simply trying to appease their guilt for what they, and the rest of the America, have done to myself and my countrymen, to the entire nation of Australia.
The Aussie superstar licks his lips and then continues to stare intently at the camera.
Joseph Greaves: Do they think giving me a title match will keep me quiet; do they really think it will shut me up? By labelling us as no more than criminals and yokels, we have in turn faced ridicule from every corner of the world. Whether America did it to make a quick buck or to just fuel their own rampant ignorance, it doesnít really matter to me. What matters is that they need to punished, hell the majority of them just need to be educated on what their country has done to mine.
Greaves leans back on his seat and glances back at the old jail behind him before quickly turning back to the camera, his eyes determined.
Joseph Greaves: But in reality, from humble beginnings we, Australia, moved away from those typecasts, we expanded and leapt forwards into a bright future. And yet Stevenson Marquel, the man I face for the Mayhem Championship, has lived a life of crime in which he cheated honest, hard working people in order to fuel his own selfish desires. And yet the members of the WZCW Universe heap him with praise and they shower him with cheers as he walks to the ring with his championship belt around his waist and determined malice in his eyes. Just because he is a proud citizen of America they adore him.
Greaves quickly plunges into his hand into his pocket, scans the screen of his sparkling iPhone as it emerges and then pops it back into his jeans. After wiping a trail of sweat from his forehead, Greaves gets to his feet and begins to saunter away from the jail.
Joseph Greaves: But with enough time and enough effort, they will soon see the errors of their ways. They will see that Australia has developed into the most incredible place on earth, a breeding ground for greatness, not criminal scum. We have moved forward, moved on from our past which is more than could be said for the good old US of A. Itís more than could be said for my other opponent, one Jason Armstrong.
Greaves emerges out onto a neat, paved path that weaves its way through what appears to a public garden. The Southern Star stops to check out a patch of beautiful purple flowers before glancing back at the camera and speaking once again.
Joseph Greaves: Just like the country in which he was born and raised, Armstrong is desperate to hang onto his past, he craves his victories of old. But just like the rest of his career in WZCW, and just like his match-up against me on Aftershock this week, there will be no more good fortune for the Cinderella Man. Armstrong is going to need more than a miracle to stop me from achieving victory because his time as a winner is up, he deservedly left behind championship gold years ago. Most of you people may not know this but both Marquel and Armstrong, they just arenít worthy of holding a prestigious title belt around their waist. But just as history has shown us, those ripe with ignorance eventually fall while the educated, level headed members of society in turn flourish. Which is what will happen on Ascension this week, which is what will happen to the rest of WZCW soon enough.
As a takes a few more steps through the breathtaking garden, Greaves hears a beep and pulls out his phone for the second time, only glancing over it for a second before replacing it in his jeans.
Joseph Greaves: Iím afraid that is all the time we have left for this week, loyal viewers. I have important people to see and greatness to prepare for, but donít be sad for when we meet again, another champion will have been welcomed into the ranks of countless other victors to hail from the land down under. And his name is Joseph Greaves.
With a sly grin, Greaves holds out his arms and the screen slowly fades to black.
Click the graphic to check out how I would book Smackdown after Wrestlemania alongside Theo!
"Never said it came easy, I'm making cheese, Buyin all the things on TV" -Tupac Shakur, R U Still Down? (Remember Me)
The scene opens in New York City's very own, Central Park. It is a very warm and sunny day, and the camera shows people walking down the sidewalk of the famous park, with couples holding hands, and children playing in the grass. The camera then cuts to a very large man wearing a T-shirt, and basketball shorts, sitting on a bench alone, the WZCW Mayhem Championship is resting next to the man who is its current owner in Stevenson Marquel. Stevenson is greeting many people that pass by, some people greet him back, and others just ignore him. Marquel then suddenly sits back, and lets out a deep breath along with a big smile.
Marquel: Man, sometimes you've just got to look around at all of the people around you, and realize how great such a beautiful place like Central Park is on a beautiful day...Marquel lets out another deep breath... I know that I didn't always realize this, but it's good that I am now. I'm looking around, and I've seen a few familiar faces, but for the first time in about 7 years, I'm not afraid of them when I see them. I'm not trying to hide my face when I see them, I'm not. I saw one of my closest friends, Jack, and learned that he's almost out of prison, I'm the Mayhem Champion on the road to Kingdom Come, which I'll get in to later, but right now, wrestling and not wrestling, I'm clean. I'm good, you know? Yeah, I got an annoying monkey named Ace Stevens on my back, but I will get in to that later. I just saw a holographic version of Tupac perform live with Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre, I've got to admit, I did not know what to say or think when I saw that.
Marquel starts humming and rapping to a variety of Tupac's songs, as he takes a long pause, and waves "hello" to more people that walk by him. He looks over to the Mayhem Title, and smiles at it, and rubs it for a little bit with his right hand.
Marquel: That performance was incredible, people really need to realize how great that man was. He always put other people in front of him, he stood up for what he believed, and he is one of the most miss-understood people that have ever walked this earth. All people have to do is listen to his lyrics, and they'll know what I'm talking about. His lyrics showed that today's world is flawed, and only the people in it can change it. In his great words, you've got to "learn to see me as a brother instead of two distant strangers". He could change people in the power of his lyrics, and he was just miss-understood as someone who didn't deserve fame and fortune, when he earned every single penny he made. You know, Tupac Shakur, that's all you need to know, Tupac Amaru Shakur.
What do you know,
Tupac Shakur running the show,
With hits like Run The Streetz and Dear Mama,
'Pac always a real brotha'
He's a true guy to follow up after,
It wasn't hard to tell with all the crowds he could gather,
He could make a change by just showing his face,
It's didn't and still doesn't matter the race,
Even after he's gone and away,
We all know in the heart in where he stay.
A random man walks past Marquel, and blankly stares at him. After a little bit, the man smiles, and nods his head at Stevenson, who smiles along with the man. Marquel greets him quickly, before the man walks away. Marquel looks directly at the camera and winks.
Marquel: Now, back to wrestling, my place to make a change. Ace Stevens, a man who has probably walked across the very park many times is trying to make a fool of me. He thinks slapping me in the face will intimidate me. Listen, I don't want to sound like a broken record here, but I've been through much worse that a simple slap in the face. Ace and I are wrestling on two different cards this round, and I don't expect to see any of him at all. Ace, if I was you, I would focus on Mick Overlast because, well, when you take your eyes off of the ball, it hits you right in the face.
Marquel winks to the camera again, followed by a small laugh. A teenage girl walking her husky dog walks by Marquel, and the dog goes over to Marquel, and Marquel gently pets the male dog, who has a name tag with the name Guy on it. Marquel smiles at the teenage girl, and she returns the smile before walking past Marquel. Stevenson gently wipes the dog hair off of the mayhem title.
Marquel: Dogs are great. Now, I also have to take my focus off of Ace Stevens for this round, and recognize the challenge that I face ahead of me. I am trying to do something this round that many other great WZCW superstars have struggled with, and that is defend this great Mayhem Championship. This title shows the hard work I've went through, and the blood I'm willing to leave in the ring to retain the prestigious name as WZCW Mayhem Champion, and to maybe, well possible defend it at WZCW's biggest event, Kingdom Come. If I can make it to Kingdom as the Mayhem Champion, than it would be fantastic if my great friend Jack Bowa would be released from prison, you know? That's really something that would be great, if Jack could be out of prison before Kingdom Come rolls around, and he can see me defend this title. That's a change, not too long ago, Jack and I thought that we couldn't be touched by the police. I guess that I could just say that I'm pretty happy that I learned my lesson first I guess, or that I just got lucky, and was able to make a change before him. I know that when I wrestle, I frequently say that I'm focused on the match itself, but for this match, I was be completely wrong if I said that Jack wouldn't be in my mind. You know, I know that I got to do what I got to do, but I know that WZCW is on the road to Kingdom Come, and I do want Jack to be out of prison by then. One thing though, I am the Mayhem Champion.
Marquel greets some more people that walk by him. Some ask what the belt is for, and why he has it, while others do recognize him as the WZCW Mayhem Champion. Marquel speaks to some old friends as well. Stevenson sits back down on the bench.
Marquel: This round though, on Aftershock 8, a triple threat match will decide who will be crowned the Mayhem Champion. It is well known, and is said pretty frequently that a champion is only a champion is he or she defends his or her belt successfully at least once. Well, it looks like Aftershock 8 is where I, Stevenson Marquel proves what a true Champion is. This Mayhem Championship is mine. Jason Armstrong is someone who's story I have heard of, and someone who I do have respect for. He's trying to make a change. Jason, you have to learn though that success isn't something that will get your family back, as well as success isn't something that will completely get your life back together. It's just a bonus, you know, brotha'? If you really want that, than the only thing you can do is make a change outside of the ring. Inside of the ring won't magically get yourself back together, I understand that you want the Mayhem Title, but don't use this certain match as a way to fix your problems. I'm going to give you some advice right here, brotha'. If you really want to prove to your wife that you've made a change, than go outside of WZCW and prove it. You and I both know the massive salaries that we get for wrestling, it's way more money than we need. Go prove to your wife that you're a very good person, which I know that you are, and donate money. Visit your wife and your son a lot too. Even if your wife kicks you out, at least let her know that you care about your son. I'm trying to be a friend here, Jason. I know that we'll be in the ring together, wrestling for the Mayhem Championship, but I just want you to know that the Mayhem Title won't bring your life back together, you know? It's a title.
Marquel sits back, and takes a deep breath. He greets some more people, as he stays seated. Marquel lets people tough and rub the title, as he stays seated. Marquel sits up, and stares in to the camera.
Marquel: Joseph Greaves. You're just like Johnny Scumm and Ace Stevens, and that is that you see life just plain flat out wrong. You say the fans just cheer me because I'm American for one. You seemed to not mention the actual reason why I get cheered which is that whatever they give to me, I try to give back to them. You don't need to bring up the rough roads that I've been through. I get cheered because I try to do something that you're obviously very blind to, and that is making changes. There's not much to say to you other than you need to open up! You need to make a change, not criticize people based on what country they're from. It's not that hard, and you are someone who can turn around if you just make a change, you know? There's not much to say to you. I beat your buddy Cooper, and it seems like you're just his spokesman. This Mayhem Championship is currently mine.
Marquel lets out a few more deep breaths, and stands up with the title, and walks around the park for a little bit. He greets more people before sitting back down on the bench. He sits up, and stares deeply in to the camera.
Marquel: I've heard that I have a voice that is different than the voice that every other current WZCW superstar currently has. I find that to be a good thing, something that I am happy about. It tells me that I am making a change, and that people are listening to me. I am going to prove at Aftershock 8 that I am a true champion. I am going to prove that I am a fighting champion. Jason Armstrong, Ace Stevens, Joseph Greaves, or anybody currently on the WZCW roster, I am a fighting champion. Jack, I know that you're in prison, but I am going to win this match. We are on the road to Kingdom Come, and assuming you get released from prison before Kingdom Come, we are going to be in Texas together, and I will be the WZCW Mayhem Champion. I've been through too much in the past to lose this match against Armstrong and Greaves.
Here's a little rap,
This upcoming Mayhem Title defense won't be a snap,
I'm going to have to work hard,
Because working hard lets you go far,
A part of High Society and The Cinderella Man,
Mayhem Champions haven't been so hot,
Stevenson Marquel is the man that can,
Retain the title with a shot,
At Kingdom Come is so close,
Greaves and Armstrong you guys are toast.
Marquel gets up off of the bench, and puts the Mayhem Chapionship on his right shoulder, as he walks around the part. The camera shows Marquel's very close friend, James Baron, and the two men shake hands, and continue to walk inside of Central Park, with Marquel still shaking the hands of many people. Marquel and Baron exit the park, as they continue to talk, as the camera zooms out, and switches to a shot of the Mayhem Championship resting on Stevenson Marquel's shoulder.
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