Post by Star Stormz on Sept 17, 2022 22:40:22 GMT -5
PWS: APEX PRESENTS RIOT!
Ottawa, Ontario Canada - Canadian Tire Centre
Six Person Tag Match
Cleo Philips & Alexandra Calaway & Mike Hawk vs. ANTITHESIS (Jonathan Sanders & Alexander Lyons & Dionysus)
Roleplay deadline is Sunday September 25 at 11:59 pm eastern
1 RP each; 300 word minimum, 5000 word maximum
Post by Cleo Phillips on Sept 25, 2022 7:42:21 GMT -5
The Lyons Den has produced several talents in the past few years, and while all of them have the same competitive drive enlisted in them, not all of them get along. Two of the students known to quarrel are Cleo Phillips and Alexander Lyons, who as it would have it find themselves on opposite sides of the ring this week.
The young Cleo has worked hard to become World Champion, and instead of joining most of the school in putting her up, Alex has taken to a bitter jealously that he will never admit, his only real comfort in the fact his family at least owns the place still, which keeps him safe from discipline and able to act as he pleases.
Cleo was in the middle of a training session with Keevee Kaiser, when she abruptly stopped to complain about a certain onlooker.
“Man, I can’t focus with him sitting there.” she complained, pointing to Alex who was sitting calmly at ringside, non chalantly sipping on a Starbucks cup.
“Who me?” he said calmly, “I don’t mean to offend. Just trying to take some notes, prepare for my next match.”
“Yeah, against me.” Cleo replied, “Don’t at all innocent, you’re trying to spy on me, and send notes back to Sanders.”
“Like I said, just preparing for my match.” Alex grinned.
“You want that match to start right now smartass?” Cleo said angrily, moving to exit the ring only for Keevee to hold her back.
“Hey, c’mon Cleo you’re better than that” he said, “Don’t let him bother you, he’s just trying to get into your head.”
“I’m sick of him sitting there with that smug look on his face.” she complained.
“So he sits there.” Kaiser said, “So what? You’re putting in real work, and that’s why you are the world champion, and he isn’t.”
“Gold isn’t the only way to power” said Alex, “As most around this school have learned when it comes to Victoria, Vincent or myself, power can come from elsewhere, and when you have that real power nothing can stop you, because the fact is gold and championships aren’t really power. Power is power.”
“Power is power?” said Cleo, “The hell is that supposed to mean?”
Alex said nothing, he only smiled arrogantly, nodded to Cleo and walked off, leaving her alone with Keevee.
“You can’t keep let him get to you like that.” Kaiser said, as he and Cleo moved to sit on the ring apron.
“I know….he’s just so..ugh..” said Cleo.
“Everything going okay?” asked Kaiser
“I mean, yeah for the most part, but like, it’s starting to really set in. The pressure of being World Champion, you know? Like I don’t wanna let nobody down or whatever. ” said Cleo
“Hey, that’s normal.” Kaiser replied, “It comes with being a champion.”
“Yeah, but this isn’t like the United Championship. Plus I’m on the video game cover, and doing a lot of press tours, and all the charity work I be doin’” said Cleo, “PWS is putting a lot of stock behind me now I feel, and sometimes I worry I won’t meet expectations.”
“You know that isn’t true.” Kaiser said, “You get to do all that stuff because you earned it, PWS didn’t just pick any face for their video game, they picked the one they knew would lead them into the next generation.”
“Am I really ready for that though?” Cleo said, “It’s like I feel the need to deliver at a top level every week now, or like I have to do great every week now because I’m the world champion.
“That’s just it.” said Kaiser, “It’s about the attitude. You have the attitude and spirit of a champion, that’s what makes you successful. Alex is only seeking money, and power. You seek respect, and that’s what makes a real champion. Gold or no gold.”
“You know they got me teaming with both my pay per view opponents…” Cleo continued
“Strange bedfellows..” Kaiser said, “I mean that’s just a classic.”
“I’m gonna be surrounded by people I don’t know I can trust” she said, “Both the ones on my team and the ones I’m competing with.”
“Hey, if anyone can deal with that sort of situation, it’s you.” said Kaiser.
“I just hope Hawk and Calaway stay in their lane, and do what’s right.” said Cleo.
“Or that they don’t lose focus by trying to show off and upstage you.” agreed Kaiser
“It’s tough being the champ." said Cleo
“Nobody said it would be easy” Kaiser replied, “But you are up to the task, you’ve proven that time and time again. You already know how Alex and his friends like to do things. As for Mike Hawk and Alexandra Calaway, chances are one of they might try something sneaky. You’re just going to have to go out there and deal with it. Go out there, and whatever happens do what you do best.”
Cleo looked at Keevee with a raised eyebrow.
“Fight.” he nodded.
She paused for a moment, then smiled and nodded, “Yeah. You know what, you’re right. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve felt outnumbered in a fight. I just gotta show them why I’m the World Champion, and the rest of them are just contenders.”
“Exactly, and for what it’s worth, I’m not so sure Hawk and Calaway are so foolish as to cross you here.” said Kaiser
“Yeah, but you never know with people like them.” Cleo replied, “Better to err on the side of caution”
“Spoken like a true champion.” Kaiser said, “I got to make a couple phone calls, you gonna be alright?”
“Yeah, I’m good.” said Cleo.
Kaiser and Cleo fist bumped, as he hopped tot he floor and headed to his office, of course before he arrived he once again ran into
”..Alex” Kaiser said, “Did you need something?”
“Maybe I just wanted to ask the master sensei for some advice on my upcoming match.” Alex grinned, making air quotes as he said master sensei.
“You want advice?” Kaiser said, “How about focusing on betting yourself, instead of putting others down? You, Victoria and Vincent are all the same. You three hang around here, bothering the rest of the students, imposing your power and you should be focusing on your careers.”
“Oh trust, I am very focused on my career.” Alex replied, “You’re must a mere trainer now, trying tor relive his glory days through his students. You cling to Cleo because she’s won you some championships and makes you feel better about yourself.”
“Alex, I don’t have time for this.” Kaiser said annoyed.
“You cling to the success of Cleo, like you did with Vincent in HWL, like you tried to do with Victoria, but like my dear sweet cousin, I won’t play by your rules. I make my own, and like it or not you can do nothing about it.” said Alex
“Why don’t you try, maybe running some drills, instead of running your mouth.” Kaiser replied.
Alex laughed, “Funny. Maybe I’ll do just that. You go tell your precious champion that she doesn’t need to worry about Hawk or Calaway, because ANTITHESIS always has something up their sleeve, we are the real power of PWS, and we will continue to make that known as we always have. Tell Cleo we’ll see her soon.”
Alex winks, and smirks before walking off, leaving Kaiser holding and shaking his head.
Post by Mike Hawk on Sept 25, 2022 18:55:14 GMT -5
Act 1: EXTREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEME!
*A camera cuts to Mike Hawk in a wig and moustache. He’s wearing his typical Edwin Mo attire, except in a completely different wig, no pale face, and a fake moustache, did I mention the moustache?*
Mike: Hi. I’m Franklin ANTITHESIS.
*A nameplate comes up that says that exact name, with “founder of Deathmatch Wrestling” written underneath. Hawk sits with his fingers interlaced.*
Mike: You might know me from such movies as “Train F5’ing” and “Saving Private Rionysus”. And I’d like to talk to you today about PWS: Apex. And particularly, their world championship picture. Because it’s bad. And I’ll explain why using sock puppets.
*He pulls out a puppet of Cleo Phillips.*
Mike: This is Cleo. She’s the current PWS: Apex world champion.
*He pulls out a miniature title belt and wraps it around the Cleo puppet.*
Mike: She won that title in a normal, regular match. Sure, it was a very GOOD match, but it didn’t have any stipulations on it whatsoever. That needs to stop. See, this is where Alexandra comes in.
*He pulls out a sock puppet of Alexandra Calaway.*
Mike: See, Alexandra is angry because Cleo has the title and she doesn’t. So she decided to wrestle her in a match that people called “fine”, and also “alright”, and also “the best match on the card”, and also “fucking fantastic”, and also “not bad”. But you know what could’ve made it better?
*He presents a steel chair prop, putting it awkwardly in the hands of the Alexandra puppet.*
Mike: If it was a hardcore match! Or an "extreme rules" match! Or a "no holds barred, falls count anywhere" match! Or had... ANY kind of stipulation!
*Alex starts hitting Cleo with the chair repeatedly. He eventually gets more violent with it, soon slamming the puppets into each other at rapid speeds, the chair even falling to the ground with a clatter. He looks up at the camera, stopping, and throws the puppets away.*
Mike: I remember in 1992 when I had a First Blood match with ol’ Johnny Noshoes. He cut me open and I bled everywhere! THAT was an entertaining match! Johnny didn’t have shoes, but he definitely had a bloodlust! And when I was laying on the mat, covered in my own blood, I smiled at Johnny, and he, in turn, smiled back at me.
*He smiles as he reminisces.*
Mike: Or the Tables match in 2003 against Bob “The Bob” Roberts. He put me through so many tables I couldn’t walk for a month! It was a serious problem, I don’t recommend it. But god dammit, everyone was having a great time! And when those 79 tables had all broken, and I was left in a bloody heap on the floor, surrounded by splintered wood, I smiled at Bob, and he gave me a concerned look and said “Are you okay?”. Ahhh, good times.
*He sighs happily, then looks back at the camera.*
Mike: Or the Everything is Glass match in 2014 with Sean the Goat Fucker. He dropped me with a powerbomb and EVERYTHING shattered. The ring, the audience barricade, my spine, the turnbuckles, the ropes... man, I couldn’t tell you how many stitches I needed after that match! Because I don’t think it could be represented by a real number. And as I laid on that floor, more glass than man, my bones twisted in a heap, my skin torn like cheap cardboard in a rainstorm, I smiled at Sean, and he didn’t move. I found out later that he had died 15 minutes prior.
*He sighs nostalgically.*
Mike: I’ll never forget the good old days. Back when men were men, women were women, and wrestling was wrestling. Back when “Hey, you’re gonna fight for the world title!” meant “Hey, you might DIE!”. So remember, folks, the next time someone tells you that wrestling is too violent these days, you look them right in the eye, stand your ground, and cut their nose off. That’ll show them for their WEAKNESS!
*He puts a hand to his head in a salute.*
Mike: This is Franklin ANTITHESIS, signing off!
*He completes the salute, and the camera fades to black.*
Act 2: The second act
*Cut to Mike backstage at APEX. He’s wearing a black t-shirt with “Nosferatu” written on it, with Jonathan Sanders on it photoshopped to look like Count Orlok from the famous vampire movie. He’s also wearing a baseball cap with “Fuck Off” written on it, and he’s got blue jeans, as well as running shoes. He walks as he talks to the camera.*
Mike: So… I’m in a six-person tag match, am I? Calaway, Phillips and I vs. the group whose name can and should only be shouted? Well, that’s great! Because that’s JUST what we need before a big Pay-Per-View match… a fight against a guy who beat Cleo twice, a guy who beat ME, a guy who brought an actual knife to the ring… and then 2 other guys.
*He passes by the catering table, grabbing a cup of punch from a referee and downing it, causing them to have to grab another one to replace it.*
Mike: I think I’ve pretty much said all I can say about Anne T., the sis… Skeleton John is 2-1 with me, won’t leave me the fuck alone, and cares about things even when he says he doesn’t, Roaring George is the unimportant one that nobody remembers, Tall Paul is tall, and that’s his one defining character trait, and Rippin’ Ringo is just a big punchy boy with fists bigger than his brain. Enough said, really.
*He passes by a bunch of offices and locker rooms, finally stopping at his dressing room, where he heads inside and sits down on a stool.*
Mike: So… I want to talk not to my opponents, but to my partners. Alex, listen… you’ve been in the business for a long time. And by ‘long time’, I mean… um… long time. I didn’t have anything for that. Anyhow, my point is, the fact that you’ve been in this business a while means absolutely nothing when it comes to your ability in the ring. Oh, and that voice in your head? The “inner darkness”? Might wanna get that looked at. It might be malignant.
*He shrugs, then turns back to the camera.*
Mike: And Cleo… c’mon, we both know you’re the weakest link among us. Your record against Spook E. Dangerously is 0-3. Mine is 2-1. I came second in the battle royal, Alexandra “Where’s there’s a Calawill there’s a” Calaway came first, meanwhile you weren’t even in it! You were just HANDED the title shot like a kid who holds his breath until their parents relent and buy them a toy. So what I’m saying is, you’re both fine… but you need me. And don’t forget that.
*He walks up and opens the door, talking to the camera one more time as he walks.*
Mike: We’re going to beat ANTITHESIS tonight… because we’re this company’s entire main event scene, and if we could easily be beaten by 3 punks from Punk Express, we wouldn’t be in the position we were in. We’d be wearing luchador masks and rambling on about Apex Riot.
*He stops in his tracks, a smirk on his face. The presidential song "Hail to the Chief" starts playing as Hawk looks the camera dead in the lens.*
Mike: So tonight, The President opens his cabinet. And inside is… moths? I didn’t have anything for that one either.
*He shrugs and keeps walking, the camera cutting behind him as he goes. The camera slowly fades to black.*
Post by Alexandra Sanders on Sept 25, 2022 20:24:22 GMT -5
So where’s your savior tonight?
As angels fall from the sky
His idle hands let me inside
Where I cannot be crucified
Forgive me father, have I sinned?
Who gives a fuck how long it’s been
Just let this holy war begin
I am the darkness deep within
The devil in her daughter’s skin
And I’ll be there ’til the bitter end
Shooting High and Falling Short
For weeks, things hadn't been going well for Alexandra. Michael had come into her life and seemed to have disappeared just as quickly. Then, there was the mysterious voice every week. Was it possible that Alexandra was losing her mind? No.. that was the stuff of fantasies. This voice was real.. real enough that last week Michael had heard it, but she knew that soon enough, she would know who was behind it all. These past weeks were just a test, leading her to her goal.. to test her ability to withstand loss and not slink away has she had in the past. No. She fought, week in and week out, making her mark on the company. Now she had another chance.. a six man tag match, with her Dishonored opponents, as her tag partners, against a group of individuals who she knew were strong competitors.. AntiThesis... But to everyone in this match.. she would be a Baneful being of destruction.. an omen of the fall of the Golden Girl.. Cleo Philips. As for Mike Hawk.. he's going to just be a footnote in MY STORY.
That Voice in the Shadows
Alexandra was in her locker room taping her wrists, mentally preparing to be in the ring with a pair of her future opponents and the people who were their opponents.. Antithesis. Alexandra had been a Rollercoaster of highs and lows of late but tonight she could regain some momentum and really show her worth, before going into the big championship match at Dishonored."Alexandra...""Yes.. my darkness.."
She looked around hearing the voice once more. It was soothing the chaos in her mind, yet stirring it at the same time. Like putting gasoline on a fire."The time is nigh. Come Dishonored, you shall take your rightful place as the Dark Queen of this company. You have delivered all that I have asked for until now - and only one test yet remains. Can you prove that you have the will to do what must be done? That no enemy, even the most fearsome, could stand in your way?""I shall be the undoing of any who oppose me. No one.. no matter the person, will stand between myself and taking my throne."
She finished wrapping the tape and sat up, feeling the being moving behind her, as if he was standing over her now. It was as if the darkness wrapped itself around her."Then go out there tonight and prove it. Show no mercy, and expect none in return.""I want them to get violent.. I want the danger, the bloodshed.. for mercy shall not be shown.. it no longer resides in this form""Good. Then revel in the violence. BASK in the pain you shall inflict. Show ALL who are watching now that you DESERVE to wear this mantle, that there is NO amount of pain or violence or opposition that can stop or slow the rise of the Dark Queen.""Are you saying I must destroy everyone in the ring.. to establish my place?""You must destroy EVERYTHING. Scorched Earth, Alexandra; leave none alive and nothing standing."
Scorched Earth.. she knew what that meant. She would have to destroy it all, bring it all to an end.. through destruction.. new life could spring forth. She was now the hand of this entity."Scorched Earth.. as you will it dark one.. so shall it be. Then, you will reveal yourself to me?""Yes. Soon enough, you will learn my name; once your trials are complete, and not before.""Then I shall do what I must..."
she nodded. "You want blood.. destruction.. you want scorched earth.. you shall have it.. and more.""Good."
His voice sent shivers down her spine in ways she could never explain.. it was something you had to experience for yourself to understand."Anything else you desire for me to do dark one..""No. This will be your final test; go out there tonight and prove that you will stop at NOTHING to see this mission through. Do this for me, and your initiation is complete.""I will see that it is done."
She nodded, this time she did not look around to try and see him, she could sense him standing in the darkness behind her. "Tonight.. the Queen starts her ascension.."
Fade to Black
Alexandra is on the phone talking with someone in the hallway outside her locker room. She rolls her eyes at whatever the person on the other end says, right before speaking again."Yeah, well if you cared so much you wouldn't keep disappearing on me. You know if you were so worried, you'd be here, maybe not at ringside, but you'd at least show you cared. But no.. just like before.. you've disappeared. What? Cleo Philips and Mike Hawk, yeah what of it. Who cares really? Look, Cleo beat me.. yeah.. so what. I used that as a learn experience. Next time we are in that ring, things will be different."
Whoever she was speaking to on the phone must have brought up her partners for the match. She didn't look happy about it at all. But having been alone in the company since her arrival, must have been taxing on her. She seemed to very much have a lone wolf status and she seemed to not care."And? What are you trying to say, that Mike Hawk is going to win this? Please.. as if. That meat-headed Hollywood hunk wanna be? Come on.. think about it. Look at all I have done in my career. If he really thinks he's going to win that title.. he's crazier than well.. me.. There's no way I'm going to allow that man to walk away from this match tonight.. with his dignity.. nor will he walk into Dishonored and win."
Her friend on the phone spoke again and Alexandra listened to them as they must have switched the topic to AntiThesis. There was a glint in Alexandra's eye, reflecting into the mirror in front of her across the hall, she saw a shadow move in the distance and smiled evilly at her own reflection."AntiThesis, look those guys.. all of them are talented. I've been in the ring with Sanders.. he's not a joke. Not in the fucking slightest. That man.. is... extremely talented.. and Alexander Lyons... that man has a primal side and you can take that however you want. But those two.. they are the kind of people a girl like me respects.. but it wont change a God damned thing out there tonight.. I'll do to them what I'll do to EVERYONE who is in my path, destroy them.. and their partner.. Dionysus.. There are a great many men who have used that name.. and guess what.. they've all wound up bowing to me.."
The person on the phone spoke again."Scorched Earth.."
They stopped speaking."Scored Earth.. do you know what that means.. Scorched-earth means to destroy anything and everything. To leave nothing standing. Slash and burn.. end everything that could help them advance. The death of it all, to the end of every dream they all have. Even if that means I destroy Cleo and Mike.. while taking out AntiThesis to win. This match tonight.. is the final step to me taking the throne.. to me proving ONCE and for ALL that I AM THE DARK QUEEN, that I say I am. No one will stand in my way.. Not AntiThesis.. not Mike Hawk.. and definitely not Cleo Philips."
Alexandra looked at the reflection in the mirror, before hanging up the phone.
Post by Jonathan Sanders on Sept 25, 2022 22:47:20 GMT -5
ANTITHESIS: AGAIN AT THE END
*Our eyes open on a chill and rainy evening scene; huge, heavy droplets pound the pavements of the urban landscape in relentless, rapid rhythm, pummeling the lids of plastic garbage cans and the roofs of metal bus shelters without remorse on their swift and steadfast journey to the ground. The urban sprawl is choked with citizens - its slickened sidewalks glistening as passers-by run frantically for shelter in their vehicles or nearby shops. The streets have begun to flood; not majorly, to the point of threatening death or deleterious effects to the infrastructure of this city, but simply enough to cause the passing vehicles to spew plumes of flying droplets in their wake, lending the entire roadway a decidedly aqueous, hydroplane-esque bent. We hold on this vista for a long moment, cutting among shots of various buildings being drenched, to the homeless and forgotten of the city huddling beneath makeshift shelters and worn, tattered coats, squeezing into doorways in the vain hope of seeking some sort of refuge from the torrent. It is in these latter moments - the pictures of suffering and want - where our voiceover, in a familiar tone, begins.*
“Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.”
*With this, our footage jumps, cutting abruptly and with some significant white noise to the image of a wilting flower, bent low by the ever-pounding rain, which pools in glistening rivulets along its leaves and petals.*
“Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.”
*We abruptly cut again, this time our camera following a falling leaf as it glides haphazardly towards the ground.*
“Then leaf subsides to leaf.”
*We cut once more, back into the urban sprawl, watching a tent city set up beneath an overpass struggle to withstand the furious wind and rain. A collection of its citizens are sat outside, huddled around a burning barrel, while others fight against the elements to keep their hovels standing, or slump against the soaking stone to try to find some slumber on the ground.*
“As Eden sank to grief…”
*Another cut, and now we’re greeted with a timelapse of the sun passing through the sky, from the rising dawn all the way through to nightfall.*
“As dawn goes down to day…”
*A beat, and then the footage cuts again, bringing us in on the scowling visage of PWS: Apex’s resident nihilist, “The Lost Cause” Jonathan Sanders. His eyes glare daggers through the camera as he finishes the poem.*
“Nothing gold can stay.”
*We hold on Sanders’ gaze for just a moment before slowly zooming out to reveal he’s standing on that same street which greeted us earlier, hands rooted in his pockets as he makes no moves to shield himself from the pouring rain, save a long black trench coat and a black-and-white “Ice Nine Kills” hoodie beneath. The Snake of Eden’s expression remains dower as he begins to walk forward through the storm, keeping his gaze trained on the camera, which follows his movements.*
“Summer is dying.”
*Sanders slowly rounds a corner, moving through a squalid and dilapidated section of whichever town he’s currently inhabiting - likely a suburb of Ottawa Ontario, given Riot’s planned location for the week.*
“Even as the wilting leaves refuse to fall, clinging desperately onto the limbs of the trees which birthed them - in spite of the birds’ steadfast refusal to flee this freezing paradise in search of warmer pastures - as I wade through the violent, torrential outpouring of Mother Nature’s wicked fury, the truth can no longer be denied…”
*Sanders pauses, here, and he ceases his movement as well. His black-painted lips blossom into a wicked and derisive smirk.*
“We have arrived, once more, at our inevitable end.”
*He remains silent for a beat, then begins to walk again.*
“And I am pleased to greet it. For it is simply in the nature of this world; living beings rise, then ultimately fade. Leaves wither and fall, animals decay to barren bones, picked clean by the lowly insects of the soil and the muck…and all the empires we have built, the statues and the dynasties to the everlasting ‘glory’ of human enterprise, shall crumble into dust, swallowed and forgotten by the unforgiving sands of time. All life gives way to death…and the circle is unbroken.”
*Once again, the Lost Cause pauses, giving his words the time required to truly sink in. His motion does not cease this time, however, as he continues to stride through the incessant downpour towards the entrance to a very-familiar cemetery. Once he’s reached the gate, he simply stands against it, letting one hand slowly slide out of the pocket of his coat to instead grip the bars before him, gazing through them almost…wistfully, a tone reflected in his voice.*
“On how many more occasions must we do this dance? How long will you keep fighting until you finally realize that my crusade cannot be stopped? I have slain two of you before - Michael and Cleopatra, the cynic and the Queen - and yet still, you seem to labour in intentional ignorance of the futility of your endeavours. As Sisyphus pushed his boulder up the hill, full of childish hope and naive certainty that this time, with THIS one final toil, it would finally remain in place, you continue to deny the reality of your own fate. We have fought this very battle in the past, Cleopatra. Just as your Egyptian counterpart battled Octavian and ultimately lost her Empire and her life, you went to war with me and it cost you nearly everything. It is simply by the grace of chance that you survived our last encounter…and yet you seek to poke that bear again? You have stared Death in the eyes, felt its cold and callous fingers closing ‘round your throat…and now you ask for more? I must have planted that seed deeply, Cleopatra - that cold and bitter apathy, the plague that festers in the veins of every uncorrupted soul I conquer. I see it has germinated well; it has borne the fruit of want, that unquenchable desire for more that shall ultimately bring you ruin. You are, as you have always been, the modern Ozymandias. An ill-fated Empress of a crumbling, scattered kingdom. Cling onto that crown until your knuckles calcify, Cleopatra, it will not change the truth…in spite of your defiance, we already KNOW how this poem ends.”
*Sanders once again pauses, now, his lips curling into a cold, sadistic grin. He hops quickly over the cemetery’s gate - the camera struggling to follow him inside, but ultimately managing - and begins to stride slowly up the muddy path towards its centre. Astute viewers will recognize this locale from the first ANTITHESIS vignette following the group’s formation, where they ‘cremated’ hyper-realistic mannequins of Cleo Phillips and Shawn Young, but the landscape appears…different now. Charred. As if the cemetery had been ravaged by a raging, untamed wildfire between the last time that we saw it and the present. The Horseman of Plague’s grin merely widens as he walks among the ash and ruination.*
“Michael…you, TOO, should know the ending to this tale; in fact, you’ve said as much yourself, unless I’m much mistaken. Didn’t you vow that you would never cross my path again? That our little war was over, the blessed Ragnarok of Destiny finally capping off our beautiful relationship? And yet, here we find ourselves again. It’s as if we’re star-crossed lovers, Michael; Romeo and Juliet, bound by destiny to be together until they meet their bitter end. And I have such plans for that End, Michael; our perfect Armageddon, the culmination of a story which began when we were children…but that day has not yet come. We still have some way to go before our Fimbulwinter dawns. I hope you will enjoy this journey, Diogenes - I hope you can see through your cynicism, back into the eyes of that frightened little child on the playground, picking fights with weaker boys because he thought that it would win him favour with the other students. I hope that boy is not yet dead…because I can imagine no greater pleasure than killing him myself. You’ve resisted my corruption thus far, Michael, and I admit I am impressed. But I have brought you to the precipice; I have SHOWN you the abyss…and I know that it has looked back into you. Time will tell us how you feel those effects; your obsession with Cleopatra’s title is merely the first symptom. I look forward to watching the progression of this virus.”
*And here, Jonathan pauses one last time, as he crests the hill in the centre of the cemetery to find the Mad God Dionysus wandering amongst the wreckage, overturning tombstones and leaping at the woodland creatures seeking shelter from the rain as he hums his characteristic sea shanty to himself, the sound carried and made eerie by the blustering, stormy winds.*
“And finally, we come to Alexandra. Alice, peering through her Looking Glass. I mentioned before that I have seen the Darkness in you, Ally; that the pain and tragedy you are suppressing remind me of myself. I have seen your Dark Reflection…and it looks remarkably like mine. I wonder, Alexandra, if you are ready to embrace that darkness yet? If you have thought about my words, and how they’ll shape your future if you finally choose to heed them? Our violence is a cycle, Alexandra; we can no more escape it than a bird can leave the atmosphere. Try as you might to break free of the traumas of your past, they have LEFT their mark upon you - their blackness stains your soul, just as the unbearable weight of being has left a stain on mine. We are kindred spirits, Alexandra, which is why I shall extend to you the kindness of this warning: run. Do not fight me, do not STAND against the ONSLAUGHT of ANTITHESIS; if you value your existence, if you wish to survive within this business long enough to claim the Crown I know you seek, then the ONLY course of action is to knuckle under and surrender. I am not a thing that you can stop - ANTITHESIS is not a monster you can slay. We are the Book of Revelations; the End of Days for anything and everything that lives within this broken system. We are the FURIOUS WRATH of Hell itself, unleashed upon this Earth to bring FIRE AND DAMNATION TO ALL WHO WALK ITS SURFACE!”
*Sanders pauses once more, inhaling sharply, his grin having morphed into a glowering, impassioned sneer as he spits this final line with Hellfire. He slowly calms himself, hands balling into fists as his steel-grey eyes clamp tightly shut for just a moment. When they reopen, they have hardened, broadcasting Sanders’ inner bitterness into the world at large. He speaks his next line softly, devoid of the inferno we’d just witnessed.*
“We are the cruel and bitter thoughts that you hold secret in your mind…and we are as inevitable and unrelenting as the changing of the seasons. Isn’t that right, Dionysus?”
*Sanders’ ebon lips once more part into a wicked, sadistic smirk as his enormous stablemate comes into frame, the camera panning outwards to reveal him crouching on the muddy ground just off to the Impossible Question’s left.*
Dionysus: “When man faces god… it does not matter the amount of men. The size of the army is irrelevant, when the opponent is the personification of death itself. You have three. We need but one.”
*The Mad God stands up now, a wicked smile on his face.*
Dionysus: “Dionysus. God of Madness. The bitter, screaming end of anyone and everyone who stands against him! The oncoming storm from which there is only one way to escape…”
*With this, the Horseman of Death walks to a nearby headstone, reaching in front of it, off-camera, and picking up an old, weathered machete. It looks damaged, but unlike by a fire. Like he brought it himself. With a grin, he swings it as hard as he can at the headstone, chipping a piece off of it, which hits the ground at his feet. Dionysus stops what he’s doing and looks at the camera.*
Dionysus: “Michael… Alexandra… Cleopatra…”
*His massive chest moves quickly in and out as he takes deep, feral breaths, before running at the camera at full tilt, dropping the machete as he does, and grabbing the lens at the end of his lunge.*
*He throws the camera to the ground, and the last thing the lens focuses on is the chipped corner of the tombstone, Sanders cackling into the night as the camera cuts to static.*
Post by Jonathan Sanders on Sept 25, 2022 22:48:27 GMT -5
(OOC: The above is a joint promo written by both myself and Jimmy, the handler of Dionysus. Staff knew ahead of time that we were going to do this.)