CSWA co-founder Stephen Thomas, having returned from exile on a island, still commands control of the CSWA after using the courts to force Chad Merritt out of power. After stripping Dan Ryan of the CSWA World Title, he put Joey Melton in his place.
Thomas returned the CSWA to its first 'floating' tour in years, putting PRIMETIME aboard the Parsons' Cruise Liner II starting with LABOR DAY LAYOUT and ending in Freeport. LDL showed Thomas continuing his tricks, apparently firing those not onboard the ship, as well as making sure that Hornet received false travel documents. That led to Craig Miles appearing as Hornet, attacking Melton, and then delivering a diatribe against Hornet.
Behind the scenes, a crotchety old man seemed to be pulling at least some of Thomas' strings. At PRIMETIME in Nassau he revealed himself by sending his lapdog, Timmy Windham, to attack Dan Ryan. And where there's Timmy, there's Mickey Benedict, former CSWA Board of Directors member and wrestler.
At least some of Thomas's plans have gone awry. Despite firing those not on the ship, Eli Flair showed up onboard in Nassau, apparently not too worried about Thomas's ranting. In fact, he ended up facing... and defeating... Melton in a non-title match after Tom Adler refused to face Melton.
Greensboro Champion Jean Rabesque has launched a city-by-city tour defending against all-comers, claiming to be the CSWA's 'real' champion and not a paper one.
Shane Southern's top contender status was apparently thrown out by Thomas, who put Southern and Presidential Champion Eddie Mayfield in against each other for the top spot at LABOR DAY LAYOUT. The match went to a no-contest, leading to the pending match in Freeport, with the winner getting the next CSWA World Title shot.
Which of Thomas's plans come to fruition in Freeport remains to be seen. With PRIMETIME 500 looming, Thomas has given a CSWA World Title shot to Hornet and dared him to no-show and invalidate his otherwise iron-clad contract.
The trap is set... but for whom?
Ever have that feeling that something is just wrong? As Hornet turned the keys in the garage door and stepped through the threshold, the feeling hit him. It wasn’t a blaring alarm, more like an ache just behind the eyes. He stopped for a second and turned his neck, popping the vertebrae, hoping that the slight pain could be attributed to sinus pressure, or the old back injury, or… anything but that wrongness.
There was nothing overt out of place, nothing that screamed of intrusion or theft. But was the mail turned at a different angle? Was that cup just so when he left earlier in the day?
The feeling intensified as he approached the master bedroom, but still… he couldn’t find anything missing or moved…or obvious. As the minutes past, the sense began to fade like a bad dream. His mind moved on to other things, mostly packing for the upcoming trip to the Bahamas. He grabbed the travel suitcase out of the closet and began the familiar process – boots, tights, travel clothes…
If only he had looked deeper in the closet, he would have realized what was missing. And he might have put the pieces together.
But he didn’t.
(CUEUP: “Somebody Told Me” by The Killers)
(CUTTO: A fatigued Dan Ryan's arm being raised in the Merritt Auditorium as he clutches the CSWA World Title belt in the other arm.)
(CUTTO: Hornet and Tom Adler shaking hands at the end of their CSWA15 match.)
(CUTTO: Kin Hiroshi's 'thumbhold' on Jean Rabesque during their Greensboro Title match..)
(CUTTO: JJ DeVille getting the pin at CSWA15 and raising one of the Unified Tag belts over his head.)
(CUTTO: Mike Randalls standing over Chad Merritt's desk.)
(CUTTO: Mark Windham saying "Yes, I Quit" and Eli Flair dropping to his knees.)
(CUTTO: Timmy Windham standing over Mark Windham with the remains of a flaming wooden chair.)
(CUTTO: Eli Flair being loaded into an ambulance after being attacked in the parking garage.)
(CUTTO: Scotty Michaels and Jerome Henderson standing over Mittens T. Cat)
(CUTTO: CSWA Commissioner Stephen Thomas and Hortense in his CS Towers office.)
(CUTTO: The marquee of the Merritt Auditorium being sandblasted as Thomas watches on.)
(CUTTO: Bill Buckley and Sammy Benson ringside at their station, casually dressed, a backdrop of thousands of PCL captives signaling the light’s red—PRIMETIME 499 is a go.)
BB: HELLLLOOO wrestling fans! Bill Buckley here with my Emmy-nominated sidekick and co-host Sammy Benson. The only man who tidies loose ends as well as Martha Stewart. Sammy?
SB: Cleaning and crafts are just hobbies Buckley, calling this (censor) is my job. (taps chest) I LIVE FOR THIS!
BB: Thank you Sammy Benson! Tonight, sixty-minutes of PRIMETIME #499! One away from 500!
SB: And he counts too. Amazing. (pats Buckley’s head) #499, but the days seem twice as long this year. #500, a goal this company should have reached three years ago, if not sooner, but when you run a show for every month on Josie Maran’s SI Calendar you end up with more time to stop and smell the roses along the way to a milestone. Frankly, at this point my friend, we’re all stinkin’ high. I hate roses. I hate extended cruises, and I hate…I hate you all.
BB: Yes folks he’s filled in the spaces of this company’s summer break by working for Hallmark. This Holiday Season be sure to get your Sammy Benson “I hate you” line of cards. I hear two or three, are interactive and can fart.
SB: Just what the Doctor said just after Billy’s birth nearly forty years ago.
BB: Special sixty-minute edition tonight, Sammy, and it looks great. Kevin Powers and Evan Aho make their return! Two rivals going head-to-head once again with Eddie Mayfield and Shane Southern in a Return Top Contenders match! Winner gets a shot at the World Title at PRIMETIME 500! And in the MAIN EVENT, the US champion HORNET gets a shot at friend and rival, Joey Melton -- the residing World Heavyweight Champion.
SB: We assume it’s HORNET. After that stunt he pulled two weeks ago, letting Craig Miles take his place…
BB: Oh stop.
SB: Hey, I’m not the one who no-showed AGAIN in a World Title match. It’s a wonder this man gets second, and third, and fourth chances. He may have built the foundation to this place, but he’s workin’ on tearing it down as well. Somewhere Monte Farriss feels all our pain.
BB: In my opinion the man’s earned anything he gets, and tonight he’ll have a chance to become CSWA World Champion for the 5th time! But first, two old faces step into a CSWA ring again.
Evan Aho vs. Kevin Powers
(The camera pulls back and pans the Parsons’ Cruise Liner’s Grand Ballroom, packed with three thousand fans on the CSWA’s “Cruise To Remember.” A modified entryway, complete with big screen, is set up on one end of the vast room. The camera zooms in to the entryway.)
RJ: Ladies and gentlemen, our first bout of the evening is a one-fall contest with a twenty minute time limit. First, hailing from Chicago, Illinois…
(CUEUP: “(Can’t You) Trip Like I Do” by Filter and the Crystal Method. The fans jump to their feet as the video wall flashes “GOOD GOD.”)
RJ: At six feet ten inches and three hundred twelve pounds, he is a former Unified World Tag Team Champion and a former CSWA United States Heavyweight Champion. The master of Kiss the Canvas, he is “GOOD GOD” KEVINNNNNNN POWWWWWWWWWWWWWWERSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!
(With the music continuing to blare Powers looks out into the crowd and holds out his arms to make a 'T' pattern as a white fountain like pyro goes off behind him. Once the fountain goes out Powers makes his way inside of the ring and stands on the second turnbuckle, playing to the Cruise Liner crowd.)
SB: You can’t expect me to watch Kevin Powers without some sort of adult beverage, can you?
BB: Hush, Sammy.
(CUEUP: “Control” by Puddle of Mudd)
RJ: Now making his way on board… all the way from Seattle, Washington. He stands at six feet even and two hundred thirty-pounds…
(For a single instant the video wall reads "AHO" in simple, bold letters before flickering into black and white footage of Evan Aho tearing down opponents with stiff strikes, punishing throws and sick submission locks.)
RJ: He is a wrestling predator… he is…the former CSWA World Heavyweight Champion…. EVANNNNNNNNNNNNNN AHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!
(Aho whips aside the curtain and stalks to the ring, seemingly oblivious to the fans reaching for high-fives.)
BB: Aho is focused, and from talking with him earlier today, it sounds like the nagging shoulder injury that’s hampered him for months is finally healed up.
SB: Too bad his personality never healed up. The man’s as boring as toast.
BB: It’s been just under three years since Evan Aho was the World Champion, and do you remember who his first title defense was against?
SB: Lemme guess… Kevin Powers. Do I win something?
BB: Aho and Powers faced off for the big gold belt back at ANNIVERSARY 2001, where “Good God” was one Kiss the Canvas away from writing his name in the history books. But he took a second too long to show disdain for Chad Merritt, and the “wrestling predator” capitalized and went on to win the match.
SB: And poor Kev still hasn’t held the World Title. Do you think that’s why he drinks himself to sleep every night?
BB: That match actually put Kevin Powers into retirement, which he obviously came out of.
(SFX: The bell rings.)
BB: This one’s underway. Kevin Powers quickly steps in and mockingly challenges Aho to a test of strength. He’s got eighty pounds and ten inches on Aho.
SB: Not to mention a six-pack head start!
BB: Aho steps in to accept the test of strength…no, he kicks Powers in the breadbasket and sends him across the ring… BACK DROP! He just dumped the three-hundred pounder over his head and hard to the mat. Powers up to his feet quickly, but Aho’s ready… NECKBREAKER! And Aho follows with a big elbow, obviously trying to neutralize Powers’ strength advantage by keeping him off his feet.
SB: You make him sound like he’s a cheap hooker.
BB: I’m sure you would know, Sammy.
SB: That’s a low blow, Buckley.
BB: That’s what she said! Powers knocks Aho away and gets a chance to get to his feet. Aho fires in with a knife edge chop!
(The crowd “WHOO!”s in response.)
BB: He goes for another, but Powers simply pushes him away and all the way back into the corner! Kevin charges in, but Aho slides under him. Aho nips up and then jumps on Powers’ back! He hooks in a full nelson as he hangs on the back of the big man!
SB: Let’s see if he can hang onto the big stupid bullheaded lush for eight seconds!
BB: Powers tries to force Aho off his back, but he’s got that full nelson cinched in for all he’s worth. Powers quickly turns around and begins backing into the corner, repeatedly slamming Aho into the turnbuckle, trying to dislodge him. But still Aho holds on! Finally, Powers is able to get an arm free and literally throw Aho over his head to the mat!
SB: It’s like watching King Kong slap down a plane. Just one more big dumb monkey jumping around.
BB: Aho quickly gets to his feet… WATCH OUT! Powers charges in, scoops Aho up and drives him down with a sidewalk slam! Quick cover…but he only get a one-count. Powers up…jumping leg drop!! And there’s an elbow… and another… and another! He’s dropping all of that 312 down on Aho over and over again, and now he finally hooks the leg! ONE!!!!!!! TWO!!!!!!!! NO!! Aho still has plenty of fight left in him!
SB: Are we really sure that’s not gas?
BB: Powers pulls Aho up and sends him hard into the corner. Aho charges out… TILT A WHIRL BACKBREAKER by Powers! And he’s still got Aho up… HUGE belly to belly suplex! ONE!!!! NO! Powers again to his feet…this time he waits for Aho to get up…and he grabs him by the throat!!! He’s up…and he’s DOWN! CHOKESLAM! And the cover! ONE!!!!! TWO!!!!!! NO!!!!! Aho still kicks out as this crowd comes to its feet!
SB: I think they all saw the cotton candy guy come out.
BB: Powers is signaling to the crowd! He’s ready to set up for that massive slingshot powerbomb we all know as “Kiss the Canvas!” The crowd is going wild! He turns Aho over and puts him over his head!
(CUEUP: “Bulls on Parade” by Rage Against the Machine)
SB: What the…?
BB: Someone just came out of the crowd and rolled inside the ring! That’s STEVE RADDER! He clips Kevin Powers’ knee from behind and Powers and Aho goes crashing to the mat!!! Powers gets up… but Radder’s jumped to the top rope! ABSOLUTE ZERO!!! Steve Radder just dropped Powers and now he takes a powder before Evan Aho can respond!
SB: The one guy I like even less than Powers…blasted Canadian! Thomas will let anybody run around on this cruise ship!
BB: Radder left the CSWA almost two years ago after losing the CSWA World Championship and feuding with his former stable partner Kevin Powers. And now he’s back…and he just cost Powers a chance at redemption against Evan Aho! Folks, we’ve got to take a break…but when we come back…it’s Mayfield and Southern…and there MUST be a winner!
Shane Southern vs. Eddie Mayfield
BB: We’re back folks, and still reeling from the apparent return of former CSWA World Champion Steve Radder…who apparently decided to get some long overdue revenge on Kevin Powers.
SB: Apparently Canadians hold grudges like they do hockey strikes.
BB: Fans, it’s time a big one…with the winner heading to the PRIMETIME 500 Main Event. The last time these two met was as we celebrated our first event here on the Cruise Liner – but that Top Contenders match left us with no winner.
SB: Because of that idiot referee Ben Worthington. First, he manages to get nailed by Shane Southern’s slow-as-molasses superkick, then he pretends to be some sort of wounded animal who can’t see when Mayfield took Southern’s head off with that SCREWJOB.
BB: The last time we saw Southern, he let the world know that his aim is still the CSWA World Championship, no matter who might be sitting in Thomas’ catbird seat at the moment.
SB: And the last time we saw Eddie Mayfield, he not only got screwed by another referee, Pee Wee Troutman, in a historic game of Madden football on X-Box, but he also gave JJ DeVille the beating he’s deserved for years.
BB: Deserved? He threw the man over the side of the ship and hung him by an X-Box controller cord!
SB: Granted…if Eddie hadn’t been so upset about losing the game, he might’ve realized he should’ve just let go of the cord and let DeVille swim with the sharks!
BB: You’re awful.
SB: Hey, at least I’m realistic. Unlike Shane Southern, who thinks he’s gonna get one over on Eddie here tonight.
BB: Folks, it’s time for the Top Contenders match. The winner goes on to face off for the CSWA World Championship at PRIMETIME 500.
(CUEUP: “Ain’t Goin’ Down” by Garth Brooks)
SB: (singing) ‘til the sun comes up…
BB: What in the world are you doing?
SB: (stops abruptly) Oh good grief… it’s finally worn it’s way into my subconscious. Make it stop, Buckley. MAKE IT STOP!
RJ: Ladies and gentlemen, tonight’s match is one-fall with no time limit. There MUST be a winner to determine the top contender. Making his way to the ring, standing at six-feet-three-inches and two-hundred-sixty-five pounds, hailing from Bourbon Street, New Orleans, Louisiana, he is a former United States Champion and the man who knows when the PARTY’S OVER. He is SHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANE SOUTHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHERRRRRRRRRRRRRRNNNNNN!
BB: This crowd is on its feet as the man who was the rightful top contender until the ownership changeover took place.
SB: I noticed you’ve finally given in and stopped trying to get our former boss’s name through the censors.
BB: All I’m saying is that Shane Southern defeated Hornet to become the Top Contender, and then he never got the title shot he deserved against Dan Ryan, because somebody decided to ‘mix things up.’
SB: Hey now, Buckley, the new sheriff’s in town… be careful what you say or you might end up answering to Hortense!
(CUEUP: “Voodoo Chile” by Ben Harper)
RJ: Entering the ballroom, he stands at six-feet-one-inch tall and two-fifty pounds even. He’s from Jacksonville, Florida and is the reigning CSWA Presidential Champion. You know him as HOT PROPERTY…. EDDIEEEEEEEEEEEEEE MAYYYYYYYYYYYYFIELD!
BB: The crowd here on the PCL2 is trying to blow the roof off of the ship as they wait for this one to get started.
SB: The roof comes off this thing? Why? So Hornet can arrive on another freakin’ jetpack?
BB: It’s been eight years and you still can’t get over that, can you?
SB: It singed off the little bit of good hair follicles I had left.
BB: Eddie Mayfield has finally climbed into the ring after making sure his Presidential Title is safely tucked away around the ringpost in his corner. Senior official Patrick Young has called both competitors to the middle of the ring and appears to be giving some special instructions for this one. After the last match they had, I can’t blame him.
SB: Are we actually supposed to believe that because he’s the ‘senior’ official that Young can make a good call? Look at the man’s bloodline for goodness’ sakes.
BB: Speaking of which, we understand Patrick’s father and former CSWA ref, Carl, is currently in the hospital recovering from surgery. We wish him the best.
SB: What, did he have another heart attack when somebody asked him how he wanted his steak cooked?
BB: You’re really in a bad mood tonight, aren’t you? You keep bringing up ancient history.
SB: You’d be in a bad mood too if you were on the only alcohol-free cruise liner ever created.
BB: Alcohol-free? What are you talking about? It’s been open bar since we got on.
SB: You better be joking…
BB: I’m dead serious. You haven’t asked the wait staff for a drink? I’m surprised.
SB: Of course I did. But apparently somebody paid Jose off to tell me all they have is water and Fresca… something about a corporate sponsorship.
BB: Poor Sammy.
SB: You mean poor Jose. Wait until we get done here ‘cause somebody’s gonna be yelling “Man overboard,” or the Spanish equivalent. Fresca my (bleep).
BB: Yikes. There’s the bell, and this one…
SB: …is underway. Do you ever worry about being so predictable, Buckley?
BB: Not as long as you’re around, Sammy. As they lock up, Shane Southern uses his slight height and weight advantage to muscle Mayfield into the corner, and he throws in an elbow to boot. Young calls for a clean break, but Southern is already whipping Mayfield across.
SB: Look out below!
BB: Eddie hits the corner hard but comes out running. Southern’s ready! TILT-A-WHIRL SLAM! Shane hooks the leg! ONE!!!!!! TWO!!!!!!
BB: Mayfield barely kicks out of the early cover, and he still can’t catch his breath after having the wind knocked out him. Shane pulls him to his feet…. DDT!!!! And another early cover! ONE………. TWO…… NO!!! Mayfield out again, but Southern is on fire, and this crowd is feeling it with him!
SB: This can’t be happening. Eddie Mayfield is the PREZ for goodness’ sakes. He’s the straw that stirs the drink, the hand that rocks the cradle, the.. the…
BB: Southern from the second rope! LARIAT! That could be it!!! Grapevine cover! ONE!!!!! TWO!!!!!!!!!!! THREE!!!!!! NO! NO! Young says Mayfield got his shoulder up at the last second! Southern doesn’t look happy, but he’s not letting it distract him. He pulls Eddie up and sends him across into the ropes…. Eddie holds on and Southern misses a dropkick. He hit his head hard on the mat… and now Eddie’s taking a powder outside the ring.
SB: This isn’t the way it’s supposed to happen. This is Eddie’s night! He’s the President…the…
BB: …straw that stirs the drink…yeah, yeah, we got it.
SB: The man spent thousands of his own dollars to get nets full of balloons strung above this entire arena, just so the fans could celebrate his win tonight with him. If that isn’t Presidential, then I don’t know what is.
BB: I wondered what those balloons were for. I just assumed it was yet another thing that Thomas neglected to tell us about.
SB: You mean other than the pay cut you’re taking?
SB: We’ll talk about that later. The match, Buckley…the match! At least try to act like a professional.
BB: Southern’s back on his feet and staring down Mayfield as Eddie dares him to come out of the ring after him. Didn’t Eddie get pasted with a chair the last time he tried this one?
SB: He’s obvious got a contingency plan, Buckley. You keep forgetting.
BB: Yeah yeah, “President”, I know. Patrick Young continues his ten-count, and Eddie decides it’s prudent to roll back inside. Shane’s in the middle of the ring, ready and waiting. Mayfield charges! Quick sidestep by Southern, and Mayfield goes chest-first into the turnbuckle. Southern from behind with a schoolboy! ONE…… TWO…… NO! Mayfield kicks out again and holds Southern off from becoming the top contender again! Shane’s getting frustrated that he can’t put Eddie away.
SB: Which means he’s falling straight into Eddie’s master plan.
BB: So you’re saying that Mayfield has just been playing possum the whole match?
BB: So he’s just taking a beating so we’ll all be impressed when he pulls it out?
SB: Amazing, isn’t it?
BB: Well, if that’s his plan, then he’s certainly taking a convincing beating. Southern with that Cajun leg sweep as Eddie climbs to his feet. Huge jumping elbow drop right to the chest of Mayfield. Another cover!! ONE! TWO!!!! NO!!!! Mayfield drapes his leg over the bottom rope and the referee saw it and made the call.
SB: Just adding fuel to the fire… and Southern’s going to burn himself out.
BB: We’ll see. Southern again goes down to pull Mayfield up, but Eddie grabs his hair and yanks! Southern goes through the ropes and to the outside! Eddie’s up! He swings a leg through the ropes and catches Shane with a boot to the head, and now he climbs out on the apron!
SB: What did I tell ya!
BB: Southern stumbles back… dropkick from the apron by Eddie! And now both men are down! Southern hit hard on the fan barricade – he’s trying to get his breath back, but Eddie is climbing to his feet! Eddie with a kick to the gut, and now he whips Southern into the post! He follows in, ramming Southern’s shoulder into the post, and now he rolls him inside the ring.
SB: He’s got him right where he wants him, I’m telling you!
BB: But Mayfield doesn’t follow him in. He grabs Southern by the legs and pulls him back towards the post. He’s got that right leg! And he SLAMS it around the post! No doubt trying to eliminate the possibility of that Party’s Over superkick from Shane.
SB: I’m telling you, Buckley… it’s all planned out.
BB: But before he can mangle that right knee further, Patrick Young dives in between the two, ordering Mayfield to get in the ring. Eddie reluctantly complies, although he makes sure to give the ref a piece of his mind while he does so. Southern trying to use the ropes to get to his feet, but Mayfield quickly charges in with a boot to the gut. Young warns him again, but Eddie quickly pulls Shane out of the corner with a snap mare, and now he hooks in a camel clutch!!!
SB: He’s already worked over the back and the knee… it’s just a matter of time before Shane taps.
BB: You can hear Shane’s cries of pain throughout the ballroom. He tries to muscle Mayfield off his back, but Eddie is sitting back, cranking on the neck and shoulders of the former United States Champion. Young is in position to hear if Shane should submit, since he won’t be able to tap with his arms locked back in Mayfield’s hold.
SB: I give him another sixty seconds until he starts screaming, “I Quit!”
BB: Mayfield cranks it back, eliciting another groan from Southern, but nothing resembling “I quit.” How long can Shane hold out… and how long can Eddie keep the hold locked in?
SB: As long as it takes…
BB: Shane continues to fight, possibly inspired by the folks in this Cruise Liner crowd who are on their feet and chanting for Southern to keep going. He still can’t reach the ropes, but he gets closer and closer the harder he fights.
SB: I’m telling you… thirty more seconds and it’s over.
BB: The crowd has gotten even louder, just like Southern’s struggle to escape the camel clutch. He surges forward before Eddie can recover his grip, and now he’s just inches away from the ropes.
SB: I’m not worried…twenty seconds.
BB: Mayfield suddenly lets go of the camel clutch, just before Southern can grab the ropes! Southern collapses on the mat, but Eddie’s on his feet! He pulls Southern to his knees against the ropes and then turns him over! He turns Southern upside down! He’s got him set! SCREWJOB! SCREWJOB! He NAILS that spinning tombstone!
SB: I told ya! Now everybody count along!
BB: ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TWO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THREEEEEEEEEE!!! EDDIE MAYFIELD TAKES….
SB: YES! YES! YES!
BB: NO! Mayfield’s on his feet, but Patrick Young is pointing to Shane Southern’s leg on the bottom rope! What in the world!?
(The camera pans up as hundreds of balloons begin to fall from the nets suspended above the ballroom.)
BB: Mayfield’s ‘victory celebration’ has begun, but this match is still going on!
SB: He got the three count! It’s over!
BB: Apparently not…we’re watching a quick replay on the big screen, and it’s clear that Southern’s foot got on the ropes before the three-count. Young is trying to keep this match going, but the balloons keep coming! In the meantime, Shane Southern is using the ropes to pull himself to his feet. Mayfield grabs him by the hair… RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP right onto a couple of those balloons! Southern climbs up to one knee, but Mayfield’s ready. He whips him across…he sets up for the Hot Shot, but Southern rolls over his back and hits the ropes! Mayfield turns around….. PARTY’S OVER! PARTY’S OVER superkick!!!!
SB: NO! NO!
BB: Mayfield drops like he got hit with a ton of bricks! Southern falls on top of him for the cover! ONE! TWO! THREEEEEEEEEE!!!!
(The camera cuts to the intimate ballroom crowd, as most are jumping up and down in elation. Security appears to have trouble keeping them back from the ring as several jump the barricade. Then we cut back to Southern stumbling into the corner as Patrick Young raises his hand and balloons fall all around.)
BB: Shane Southern is once again the Top Contender for the CSWA World Championship and he’ll go on to challenge for the title at PRIMETIME 500! The celebration is underway folks…but we’ve got to take a break and get this stuff cleaned up so we can find out who Southern faces at the special event. It’s Joey Melton and Hornet in a legends battle for the CSWA World Title. And it’s NEXT!
SB: Just shoot me now…. Please. And somebody get me a beer! I’m not joking!
for the CSWA World Championship
Joey Melton vs. Hornet
BB: Welcome back fans, Bill Buckley and Sammy Benson LIVE, ready, and willing for PRIMETIME #499’s Main Event!
SB: Live? Buckley these shows were taped in late August.
BB: Stop it.
SB: Come on Buckley, it’s no secret the CSWA’s shooting schedule rivals daytime television’s. A week’s worth of taping lasts two seasons. It’s fall now, which means the unfortunate people still under contract with CS Enterprises are dusted off and carted on stage like show monkeys to cover November sweeps and the Holiday season.
BB: Late August…
SB: Yes, Bill…cruises usually last three months.
BB: I hate you.
SB: If it helps, I think it just means we have a resourceful boss.
SB: That one will work for you?
BB: I think it might. (straightens tie) We’re seconds away from a World Title rematch! Joey Melton ordered to put the Heavyweight belt on the line against Hornet! A return encounter from the classic these two men put on this very boat a few short—(looks at Benson. Sammy nods) –weeks ago.
SB: I came into tonight assuming you’d have trouble with that, but good to see you’re more accepting in the latter stages in your career.
BB: With this company you have to be…
SB: (Name censored) and Thomas have made the impossible possible. Remember the Easter Egg hunt of ’91?
BB: How could I forget? The smart man says a 6-foot walking Bunny didn’t exist. The smart man was wrong.
SB: The doubters still cry it was animaltronics. We were there. I saw that damn Bunny look at me, wink, and promise he’d be back to even the score. You can’t make personal connections with remote controlled robotics.
BB: Never called back did he?
SB: He didn’t. I woo’d, but in the end, he just wouldn’t fall off his feet.
(CUEUP: “Like The Sun” – I Mother Earth.)
(The fans hop to their feet in approval as the first chords are spit out of the PA system. A succession of fireworks pop off over the stage entrance, and the ballroom darkens as the Russo Memorial light show explodes. Hornet dressed in lime green ankle length tights with “Legend” stitched on the sides, and black boots walks halfway down the aisle where multi-colored lasers outline his body in the darkness. Hornet raises his arms in the air triumphantly then runs to the ring, sliding headfirst through the bottom rope. He climbs up the nearest turnbuckle, and salutes the crowd as the remaining turnbuckles shoot a ten-foot high stream of fire into the air.)
BB: Hornet as we know and love him!
SB: Wasting half of the production budget on an opening that glorifies his massive ego.
BB: I thought it was charming.
BB: It’s for the kids, okay Sammy! The kids love it. What do you want from me?
SB: The show’s assistant director hasn’t taken home a paycheck in three months…but Hornet bless his heart is in HD.
BB: Actually that would be justification for crew not eating.
(CUEUP: “I Need A Hero” – Bonnie Tyler)
(The lights trip off again as all eyes turn in the darkness to the stage entrance for the World Heavyweight Champion’s introduction. Seconds nervously pass, then a sled powered by dogs shoots out of the entrance flying towards the ring. An orgasmic looking Joey Melton, in a black diamond sequined robe holds the mutts’ leash in the sled as he’s lead ringside, lapping the squared circle itself.)
BB: I’m not sure what to say at this point.
SB: I do. That man’s got class, give him that.
(The sled slows, as a disbelieving Hornet hangs his head, knowing he’s been out shined. Melton smiles to the appreciative crowd then begins to step out of the sled. Before he can get one foot on the ground, a fan reaches over the railing and slaps one of the dogs on the back. The sled zooms off around the ring, as Melton looks startled but plays along, waving to the crowd like a beauty queen. The Homecoming crown he never won in high school, being awarded to him tonight.)
BB: Another lap by the mutts. Well, this is thrilling.
SB: Quiet, just keep your head bowed.
(The dogs make another pass, the shoot up the aisle way, carrying the World Champion with them. Melton disappears through the entrance.)
BB: At this point I say we get Worthington to start the count. I know the belt can’t change hands on a countout, but the embarrassment in our lives can ease a touch.
(The dogs shoot back out the stage entrance, Melton furiously whipping their leashes to no avail. One more lap, as Hornet shakes his head in shame. The sled turns for the aisle, and heads back up. Melton looks puzzled, then frantically leaps off crashing into the security railing as his ride disappears. Lindsay Troy, steps out from the entrance utterly humiliated. Her contract says she has to be here. We all have entire years of our lives we’re not proud of. Don’t we?)
BB: Lindsay Troy picks up her charge and points him to the ring. This one, ah hell. I wanna go home.
SB: You gotta love Troy Buckley, always there to pick up the pieces. She’s a good girl. The kind who probably takes well to a firm hand behind closed doors. The sort of woman who doesn’t see any problem with a woman making her money during the day, but being a whore at nig---
BB: Oh geez.
SB: Like I know where the boundaries are any more. We’re lost at sea, Buckley. Maybe if we’re lucky, when we show up for the next round of tapings in December we’ll have lost our jobs.
(Melton tosses his robe to Troy outside the ring, who jets it in the stands, making some fans life. Melton double takes. She just tossed five figures away.)
BB: Ben Worthington explaining the rules to both men. A speech they’ve heard a million times, but it’s tradition Sammy.
SB: Right, much like finding Katz backstage after shows licking the floor for discarded prescription meds. Poor, poor man. What’s the last report we have on him?
(SFX: DING! DING!)
(Fans stand, high-fiveing one another. Hornet/Melton. Does it get better than this? On this cruise at least?)
BB: Joey and Hornet, two men who have spent their entire careers vying for this title. Night in and night out. No strangers to each other, that’s for sure. Neither making a move to start the match. Listen to this place Sammy!
SB: They sense the end of the cruise. Dear goodness I hope their right.
BB: Melton reaches out offering his hand to Hornet…but the ex-champ won’t shake it! I can’t blame him! After Melton played apart in making a mockery of him in the ring two weeks ago!
SB: Right. The snub from a man who gave Retirement speech #1 from the chest of his arch-rival.
BB: Melton tugs on the top rope to get loosened up. Hornet dives after him, collar and elbow tie-up! Melton rolls Hornet into the corner, KNIFE EDGE CHOP! (Crowd: Whooo!) Hornet’s unfazed! KNIFE EDGE CHOP! No go! Melton unloads again! Right hand from Hornet, and Joey’s off his feet! Hornet takes a step out of the corner, CLOTHESLINE!
SB: I don’t think this Buckley. The dogs have thrown Melton for a loop. He’s out of balance too early.
BB: Hornet brings Melton to his feet, eye gouge! The champ whips Hornet into the turnbuckle, then charges….Hornet slips out of the way and Joey this chest first!!! Dropkick from Hornet! One…..two…no!! A new World Champion was almost crowned right there!
SB: Thomas can’t like this. His hand-picked champion in trouble for the third straight week…
BB: And to Hornet no less. I think Thomas would rather lose his right arm. Hornet whips Melton across the ring, back drop!! Melton cleared twenty feet easy! Lindsay Troy reaches in the ring and pulls her man out! Like it or not, she’s got a stake in that belt as well!
SB: It’s gold, Buckley. You’ll have to pry it out of her cold, dead hands.
BB: Troy and Melton in a heated discussion! Melton’s gotta put the sled incident out of mind, and go to work. A clean win over Hornet would go along way to validating his title to some degree.
(Joey slides back in the ring, and jumps at Hornet, double leg take down. Melton wrestles Hornet to the mat, and works a side-arm headlock.)
BB: Melton with the upper-hand…working his forearms for leverage, trying to cut off the oxygen supply to Hornet’s brain…
SB: That was done years ago Buckley. Compliments of Jim Williams and repeated Randalls’ druggings.
BB: Hornet to his knees, as Melton holds to the lock….Hornet on his feet! (Melton reaches for a lump of Hornet’s hair and pulls him back to the mat. Before the fans can even boo, Hornet jumps right back to his feet) What a move from the United States Champion! Melton with the hair again!! But Hornet’s up!! Elbow to the gut! Melton’s reeling, another blow! An elbow over Joey’s head! Standing dropick, no! Melton jumped back into ropes!
(Melton grabs Hornet’s left leg and falls over his knee.)
SB: Now the master’s going to work. You go into a match with the Champion knowing what his strengths are, what the plan of attack is, but stopping it is another matter. He doesn’t need much room to work. One slip up, and Joey’s on the offensive.
BB: And he is here…bending that left knee around his own, wrenching it all the energy he can muster. Teasing Hornet into entertaining a submission. It won’t happen. It hasn’t happened….ever.
SB: I’m sure he has at one point. Get Marvin in the Jedi Temple to check the archives.
BB: Hornet slaps at Joey….choking him….anything he can do to break Melton’s hold. Melton fires an elbow back that catches Hornet square on the jaw! Joey up quickly, and crashes over that knee again! Step-over-toe-hold!!! The US champ’s in trouble!
SB: Whatever Troy said to Joey worked. The woman’s a nag, but she’s one hell of a manager. Hate to admit it, but I must.
BB: Hornet reaches for Melton and rolls him over, SMALL PACKAGE! One….two…no! For the second time tonight, Hornet nearly had the World title back in his arms! Joey up and off the ropes, knee drop to the head misses!! Hornet stands, uncomfortably but he’s up! Melton fires but it’s blocked! Left jab from the US champion. He scoops up the World champion, BENCH PRESS SLAM!!
SB: BALCO! BALCO! Hornet and Greg Anderson had mid-day tea together for years! I have documented proof!
BB: Hornet on the middle rope, Lionsault! (fans rise as Hornet hits the top rope) Hornet’s perched, ready to finish this one!! Melton can’t know where Hornet is…..WHAT’S SHE DOING??
(Lindsay Troy jumps on the apron and scales the turnbuckle, joining Hornet on the top rope.)
BB: Troy’s with Hornet!!
SB: Why not…he’s been with every other woman in this fed.
BB: OH geez! She just threw a forearm in Hornet’s throat! Troy straddles the ropes…hooks the arms…..GERMAN SUPLEX OFF THE TOP!! Lindsay….you’re better than this…
SB: Right. Rumor has it she can also dial a phone with her toes.
BB: Melton nods to Troy…then falls over Hornet for the pin. It can’t end like this… ONE…..TWO…..NO! Hornet powers out…thankfully!
SB: Nice Buckley. You’re about as partisan as Tucker Carlson.
BB: Melton hooks Troy’s tights…Snap suplex on top of Hornet! Pretty sure Thomas has waived the DQ stip for this one. Another pin, ONE….TWO….Hornet’s up! Joey’s ticked….
SB: As he should be, it was Troy’s job to hook the other leg.
BB: The World champ draws Hornet to his feet then backs him in the corner…KNIFE EDGE CHOPS! Troy steps in, CHOP OF HER OWN! Melton in, CHOP! Troy, CHOP! And Hornet sinks to the middle turnbuckle!
SB: Somewhere Cameron Cruise is jealous. Now, THAT’S teamwork! Poor Cruise..second best at something else as well.
BB: Melton and Troy whip Hornet out of the corner….Hornet leaps into the opposite corner the flies out with a DOUBLE CLOTHESLINE!! (Melton rolls outside the ring.) The Greensboro native’s got Troy by the hair!! SNAP SUPLEX!!
SB: If he pins her, does the title switch hands? The man’s a lawyer, who knows what sort of stip he worked into this contract.
BB: Hornet shoots Troy off the ropes, side-slam..no! FRANK’N’PARSONS BY TROY! She goes for the pin, ONE…. (Melton reaches through the bottom rope and yanks her off Hornet, then rolls in the ring.) Troy shoves Melton! She had the pin!
SB: But this is Melton’s fight. She has to know her role…
BB: She’s doing the job, Joey couldn’t! Trouble in Paradise…Melton and Troy going back and forth!!! Hornet clotheslines both over the top rope!!! (Troy hangs on to the top rope…and works to flip herself back over.) The Queen of the Ring is back in the ring!! Hornet doesn’t see her…A clothesline from Troy that has limited effect! Now, he’s aware he has company!
SB: Is the World title on the line right now? We need to know these things! Send Marvin back to the Jedi archives.
BB: Troy off the ropes, Lou Thesz press….Hornet’s got her! Troy’s in Hornet’s arms like dead weight…pleading with her life….but he’s about to drop her!! (Melton climbs in the ring holding a chair.) Melton WHACKS TROY’S BACK WITH A CHAIR AND THE FORCE OF THE BLOW TAKES HORNET DOWN! Chivalry at its finest!
SB: She signed up for the job. By any means necessary. Dem the rules Buckley.
BB: Melton covers Troy and Hornet, ONE….TWO….TH-NOOOO! Hornet with a shoulder up, but barely…
SB: And I think Troy reached for the ropes!
BB: Melton pulls Lindsay off Hornet, and brings the US champ to his feet. Pins Hornet’s left knee behind him and lifts him in the air, KNEE DROP! Joey goes right back to it, pins the knee, lifts the body up, (Troy swings wildly with the chair and whacks Joey in the back.)
SB: Control…you must learn controlllllllllllllllll.
(CUTTO: Thomas’ office. Thomas watching the match on the couch in his office with Hortense. He leaps to his feet, a chess player having seen five moves ahead and knowing he lost.)
THOMAS: CODE GREEN! CODE GREEN!
HORTENSE: Baby what is it?
THOMAS: (grabbing his cell phone and running out the door, screaming) CODE GREEN! CODE GREEN!
(CUTTO: Ballroom A.)
(Troy tossing the chair out of the ring while berating a fallen Melton. Hornet shakes his head, smiles…then covers.)
BB: Worthington counts!! ONE…………TWO…………………..(Troy snaps out of her rage, and comes back to earth, diving for Worthington’s arm saving the mat from a 3rd smack.) T----No! Troy! (Worthington wrestles his arm loose and pounds the mat, but before he can…Melton gets his right shoulder up.) Joey’s up!
SB: It’s like watching Richard Burton and Liz Taylor host a dinner party.
BB: Hornet grabs Troy by the hair and angrily sends her flying over the top rope!!! (Troy again manages to hold the top rope…and works to spring herself back over.) The champ turns back to Melton…wait….Troy’s back…and Hornet knows it!! The US Champion turns around as Troy hits the ring, BOOT TO THE FACE!! Troy’s reeling!
(Melton wearily finds his legs…bounces off the ropes, steps to Hornet and dives at him. Hornet reading the crowd’s reaction ducks, leaving Melton to come up empty, clotheslining Troy over the top rope instead.)
BB: OH!! (Melton reacts in disbelief. Hands over the back of his head.) Melton decked the woman of his dreams!!
SB: Foreplay’s the key to good sex…they teach kids that now in 5th grade. Or, they did me. But then, I was homeschooled by a friend’s mother.
BB: Hornet savat kick to Joey’s stomach!! IMPLANT DDT!! (Fans go wild.) Melton’s gone! He’s finished! Hornet looks to the fans, he knows what they want! To the top rope he goes! This is it right here!
SB: I’ll run in myself if I have to. I won’t sit through the rest of this cruise with Hornet as champ. I just…won’t!
BB: SHOOTING STAR PRESS! SHOOTING STAR PRESS! Nobody does it better! He’s going to be the CSWA World Champion for the 5th time! (Hornet covers Melton, as Worthington drops to count backed by thousands of screaming fans.) ONE…….TWO…..
(Fans react as Timmy Windham bungees to the ring, safety releases, then hooks a cord on Worthington’s belt. As Ben’s hand comes down for the third time, his body’s shot up in the air at an alarming rate.)
BB: SWEET MOTHER!
SB: Wow, look at Worthington haul ass.
BB: Timmy Windham’s jumped Hornet!! He’s beating the US Champ with…. With a BRANDING IRON! He’s using Hornet’s own weapon of choice against him! Windham whipping the iron over Hornet’s head! Somebody get in here and stop this before he ends Hornet’s career like he did Mark’s!
SB: You know, usually I’d be pleased at seeing Hornet bleed like a stuck pig…
(Fans go silent as Windham stomps at his prey. Timmy reaches for the heavens then sinks in the Iron Claw!)
BB: The Iron Claw!!!
(SFX: DING! DING!)
SB: Rhubarb forced the ring bell…it’s out of hand Buckley. And you know my policy. When the Windham’s arrive, I retire to the wet bar. Good luck.
BB: Sammy!! Fans we’re out of time…. Marvin get the cameras off Hornet…we don’t need to see thi----
BB: IT’S THE ‘EGO BUSTER’ DAN RYAN!! DAN RYAN’S hit the scene!!
(Melton groggy outside the ring, grabs Troy and they high tail it through the stands.)
BB: Ryan jumps Windham!! Both men tearing into each other! Bar the door Katie, we’re out of time! This tour’s over, and it’s been more chaotic than the DAYS OF OUR LIVES: CRUISE OF DECEPTION! We'll see you at PRIMETIME 500!
(FTB with Buckley signing off.)