LAWNDALE FIGHTING CHAMPIONSHIP PRESENTS…
I Loathe a Pay-Per-View
By Sacred Dust
A/N: Daria. Wrestling. Can these two totally different yet awesome things be combined once more? Yes. Yes they can.
This fic could not exist without the inspiration and permission of TheExcellentS, who wrote "Lawndale Rumble," "Is It Mania Yet?," "Esteemsters Series," and "Something Something Slam" on Outpost Daria and the PaperPusher's Message Board. Thanks buddy.
Many of the background characters' complete names come from fanfics written by others. I intend no offense by reusing those names here. All pre-existing Daria characters, locations and products are trademarks of MTV Networks and Viacom International.
Your parents are working late. Your annoying siblings are out of the house. And Pizza King is on the way. There's only one thing that could make this imaginary night better: the wrestling show you ordered on your mom's credit card. You turn on the TV, flip past Sick Sad World, and there it is…
Fireworks rise up around a wrestling ring, illuminating the evening sky. A huge crowd of suburbanites goes wild, framed by a massive glass and metal shopping center in the background. The event theme, 'No Giving Up' by Crossfade, plays as Lawndale High teachers Timothy O'Neill and Janet Barch open things up at the ringside broadcast table.
O'Neill: "Good evening, everyone! We are live at the Mall of the Millennium Plaza in Sprawlville, Ohio! I hope everyone is happy and well-adjusted out there, and that you brought plenty of self-esteem to—"
Barch: "Can it, skinny! This is no show for the weak of heart. This is Lawndale Fighting Championship wrestling!"
O'Neill: "Yes, Janet. And not just any LFC show. You see…this is a show that should not be happening."
Barch: "Nope. Shouldn't even exist. We've got the wrong booker and Something Something Slam isn't even finished yet."
O'Neill: "All match results and possible title changes are subject to…well, change. But we hope you will accept all this with an open mind, and…"
Barch: "GET ON WITH THE ACTION! We've got Women's champion Jodie Landon making her biggest defense of the title so far: against one half of the Freakin' Friends, Jane Lane! We've got eight brainless jocks in a tag team war, and maybe if we're lucky they ALL lose!"
O'Neill: "And the biggest news of all: superstars Daria and Quinn Morgendorffer must team up for the very first time in tonight's main event!"
Barch: "Sisterly hate, O'Neill! The only good part? They're up against two opponents they hate even more!"
O'Neill: "I really don't think we should throw the word hate around, Janet. There are some people who are very sensitive to…"
(Twin fireballs go off on either side of the entrance ramp, frightening O'Neill out of his socks. 'I Made It' by Kevin Rudolf plays on the sound system as a handsome brown-haired young man with a gold belt enters to a great reception.)
O'Neill: "Oh my…it's Tom Sloane! What a way to start off this night."
(Tom waves to the crowd as he climbs into the ring. Mr. DeMartino, the ring announcer, steps up to introduce him.)
DeMartino: "Ladies and gentlemen…please welcome the REIGNING LFC Men's World CHAMPion…Tom…SLOANE!"
(Tom motions for DeMartino's microphone and gets it.)
Tom: "Hi everybody. I'm here to welcome everybody to 'I Loathe a PPV,' a show that is apparently happening due to a space-time anomaly. Do the Trekkies know about this? (crowd laughs) But whatever the case, I'm going to keep training for my match at Something Something Slam, so I hope all of you enjoy the—"
(Tom is interrupted by 'I Wanna Be Sedated' by The Ramones on the speakers! Out comes a blue-haired kid with a cutoff sleevless shirt, cargo shorts and a nose ring—something else the fans know well.)
O'Neill: "Why, it's Bob Rollins! The winner of the Stairway to Heaven contract! But what's he doing here now?"
Barch: "Typical MALE. He's not even scheduled to compete tonight, and he still wants to hurt something!"
Bob: (stands on the ramp) "I have to hand it to you man, you've got guts. Waltzing in and out of the ring like you own it…when I'm back there, with a 24/7 shot at your title, any time I want to take it."
(He holds up a scuffed, dented briefcase covered with stickers, which apparently holds the contract he won at Is It Mania Yet? Tom is unimpressed.)
Bob: "I could cash my shot in right here, right now, and not even wait until Something Something Slam! (Major reaction as the crowd starts chanting his name!) But, I'm not gonna. (throws briefcase aside) Instead, I want you in a non-title match, no weapons!"
Tom: (chuckling) "You're kidding, right? No offense, Bob, but you and me in a clean match? You stand about as much of a chance as the Light Brigade."
(DeMartino looks starstruck, standing next to a kid who actually knows history. Rollins shrugs.)
Bob: "I'm guessing that's a bad thing. But if you've got the guts, I've got the nuts, rich boy!"
Barch: "Oh, brother."
O'Neill: "Are they really going to fight right here?!"
LFC MENS WORLD CHAMPION Tom Sloane vs. STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN WINNER Bob Rollins
(Rollins sprints down the ramp, slides into the ring and tackles Tom before he can even get out of his $10,000 robe. Referee Jesse Moreno jumps in to do some emergency officiating.
Barch: "Now THAT'S more like it! Why talk about wrestling when you can do it?!"
O'Neill: "Look at those shots to the head by Rollins! That young man must have a lot of stress to work out…"
Barch: "Sloane is getting just what every male deserves. Punishment!"
O'Neill: "Tom catches …er… (has to look down at his paper) Rollins in a headlock and rolls him over. Bob with elbows to the midsection, and they break!"
(Bob stands up and beckons at Tom. The champ is all too happy to oblige, hitting an instant double-leg takedown. He tries to parlay this into a Boston Crab, but Bob hangs on to the ropes and kicks him away. Stalemate again.)
O'Neill: "And already we've seen Rollins doing things he's never done before in this company."
Barch: "Wrestling with a brain?"
O'Neill: "I think we really should be nicer about it, but—"
Barch: "Face it, Skinny, he's not a thinking woman's wrestler. I guess he thinks he had something to prove here tonight."
(Tom goes for the legs again, but Rollins dodges! Tom stumbles down to his knees and as he gets up, Rollins nudges him in the chest with one boot, making him fall back against the ropes. Tom leaps back up to his feet, seething.)
Barch: "Now a head game from Rollins! Are you seeing this, Tim?"
(Tom yells at Rollins—"you think you're better than me?" Rollins shrugs and grins at him. Tom gets down on his hands and knees in the middle of the ring.)
O'Neill: "That's a different strategy from Sloane—now he's daring Rollins to put him in a hold and out-wrestle him!"
Barch: "Turning that punk's strategy around on him. I like it."
(Rollins approaches carefully. Trying to remember what he learned in training, he tries to lock in a full nelson. Tom turns him over, rolls backwards out of the hold and rear chin locks him in one fluid motion. Rollins gets a foot on the rope to force the break. Tom just goes back into the prone position again, daring Bob to try something else.
Rollins tries a front headlock this time to keep his body out of Tom's reach. His grip is far from perfect; Tom slips out of it and locks in an abdominal stretch. Things continue to get worse for Bob as the match goes on, with the more technically sound champion luring him into a ground game and out-wrestling him.)
O'Neill: "Now it's Rollins who's beginning to lose confidence."
Barch: "Well, no wonder. Sloane is backing up his words from earlier."
(Tom laughs and drops to the prone position again. This time Rollins has had it and just kicks him in the stomach.)
O'Neill: "Well, it's not very nice, but he WAS being provoked. And look at Rollins go after him now!"
(Things are picking up fast as Rollins throws Tom out of the ring, waits for him to get up and hits him with a body splash outside!)
O'Neill: "And Bob says 'pardon me if I join you!'"
Barch: "He's a tough kid but that's the only way he can win tonight. By surprise!"
(It's breaking down into a brawl now and that's just how Rollins wants it. Tom gets thrown into the guard rail, steps away favoring his back and gets floored with a clothesline. Rollins slaps hands with the ringside fans and gives Tom a little too much time. The 'rich boy' plays possum, ducks around a second clothesline and rocks Bob with a German suplex on the floor.)
O'Neill: "Oh my gosh! That was a big mistake by Rollins, and he paid for it!"
Barch: "He got his bell rung there, Timothy. The one at ringside is just a formality. This one's done!"
(Tom quickly gets his bearings, rolls Bob back inside and covers. Only two! Tom stares at Jesse Moreno in disbelief—"just two, dude"—and clamps on a dragon sleeper. This keeps Rollins on his knees and forces his head back, robbing him of oxygen.)
Barch: "Say goodnight, grungy! Let's end this one and get to our amazing female competitors."
O'Neill: "Jesse lifts up his arm…it falls once. Two more times and this one IS over! Tries it a second time…no! Rollins backpedals him right into the corner, and I think the back of Tom's head caught the turnbuckle! This match isn't over by a long shot…"
(The crowd is divided as both wrestlers are down. Half the fans are cheering for the LFC original with a dream, the other for the eminent newcomer. Bob gulps some badly needed oxygen and lurches into a shoulder block. It's sloppy but it connects, sending the Men's champion right back into the corner. Rollins is feeling it again now, throwing chops and punches like they're going out of style.)
Barch: "Damn, he's stomping a mudhole in him! This is Rollins' idea of a clean match?"
O'Neill: "Well, it is legal after all. Not that I condone violence in any way!"
Barch: "You're out here, aren't you?!"
O'Neill: (getting snippy) "If you don't mind, Janet, I'm going to take my Echinacea a little early."
Barch: "Now what did I say?"
(Rollins tries to pull Tom out of the corner. Tom copies his early strategy and hangs onto the ropes. Bob just lifts him up by his feet and slams him down. That impact seems to jar some sense back into Tom, and he meets Bob in the middle of the ring. They're trading punches now.)
O'Neill: "I'm not sure the champion can win in a brawl here!"
Barch: "The slob is getting the better of it! Caught him three times unanswered!"
(Tom interrupts Rollins with a chop to the neck and he stumbles back. Jesse gives him a warning for the illegal move, but Tom is unusually cross and just ignores him. He's charging Rollins…but Bob sees him coming and throws him over the top rope to the floor!)
O'Neill: "Oh my goodness!"
Barch: "Careful! I don't want Echinacea in my lap! We already played that game."
Barch: "Oops. We can edit that out right?"
O'Neill: "Sloane just got dumped on the outside! Baseball slide attempt from Rollins—he dodges! More blows are being traded on the floor! We're 15 minutes into the broadcast, and this plaza is already so loud that—"
(Tom ducks a punch and hits a superkick!)
Barch: "Wow! We heard that!"
O'Neill: "It's happening all over again, a weakened Rollins being rolled back inside…"
Barch: "Okay, THIS time it's over."
(Rollins is limp and barely responsive as Tom rocks him with a series of Germans. Five times he is launched backwards right on his head and neck, and now Tom goes in for the kill. Back to the dragon sleeper and this time his opponent has no energy left. Jesse raises the arm once; it falls. He raises it a second time; it falls again…)
O'Neill: "Two times now!"
Barch: "This is it!"
(Final lift of the arm. Bob's legs twitch. His hand stays up!)
Barch: "Geez! What's it gonna take, a tranquilizer gun? Now THAT would be fun to watch."
O'Neill: "This is uncanny, everyone! The Mall of the Millennium crowd is keeping Bob Rollins alive!"
(Tom throws him into the corner, where he crumples. The wealthy champion is rapidly losing his composure. He rushes his man again without thinking. In less than two seconds, Rollins braces himself with the ropes and pops him with a leaping enziguri.)
O'Neill: "What a kick to the side of Sloane's head! I didn't think he had it in him!"
Barch: "Neither did I, O'Neill, I admit it. He's using the ropes even better than Sloane in this match."
O'Neill: "Maybe what Rollins said isn't so crazy after all."
(Both men are punch-drunk again. Rollins crawls into a cover for two. Tom is off guard and down, but not out. Rollins has his arms and puts him in a sitting surfboard hold, catching his breath while his opponent suffers. His ears are still ringing from the suplexes, or is that the crowd? Maybe both.
As usual, pain jolts Tom back to attention. But he's thrashing around aimlessly, trying to break the hold with strength alone. Suddenly he rolls over and flips up into a pinning position!)
O'Neill: "Surprise pin from Sloane! But only two."
(Rollins gets separation and belts Sloane with a kick to the back. He staggers off the ropes and Bob flips him back into a clutch pin.)
O'Neill: "One! Two! Thr—no! That was the closest pin of the match!
Barch: "Half a second from the upset! But close only counts in horseshoes."
(Rollins off the ropes. Sunset flip into another pin. Still two, but Sloane is reeling. Rollins lifts him up for a vertical suplex and hits it!)
Barch: "Look out! This maniac is going up high again!"
O'Neill: "Could it be the Blitzkrieg Bop?!"
(It is. Diving legdrop from Rollins and Tom moves!)
Barch: "Would have been a Blitzkrieg Bop! Sloane knew what was coming and didn't want to take it! Typical cowardly actions."
O'Neill: "It was either that or lose the match."
(Tom lifts him from behind and slams him into a sitting position, compressing his spine again. Tom knows he's got him and sets him up for one of his overhead suplexes. Bob stops it with a headlock and throws him outside again!)
(This time, Tom keeps his head. He gets back on the apron before he can be hit with another dive or worse. Here comes Bob to knock him off again. Tom ducks and hits a kick to the head. Rollins weaves backwards and falls down. Tom springboards into a perfect bodysplash, right on target! One…two…three.)
O'Neill: "He got him! What a move! The title wasn't on the line, but Tom Sloane has retained his pride here tonight."
Barch: "That time it was Sloane using those ring ropes, and he made the most of them. This was a human chess match, and in the end the better MAN won. If it matters."
O'Neill: "Yes…but make no mistake, Bob Rollins has put the champion on notice with this performance. If he put up a fight like that here, who knows what he'll do when that Men's championship is on the line?"
(Tom pulls himself to his feet and grabs his title. He watches Rollins get up again with a surprised expression. With none of the smugness he displayed earlier, he walks over and shakes his hand before leaving the ring.)
WINNER BY PINFALL: Tom Sloane
(Sweeping shot of the entrance hall of the biggest shopping center in the region. Kiosks are set up right there on the floor selling merchandise. Some t-shirts have a split shot of both Quinn and Daria that combines their faces into one and says, "BELIEVE." Others show Jane, Jodie, and the Bro/QB Connection. We go to a hallway further in the building, where art teacher and interviewer Claire Defoe is standing by.
Defoe: "Well, you've heard the rumblings. You've seen the actions of a highly unstable Amelia Pine as well as the persistence of Sandi Griffin. We didn't think it would actually happen, but it is official here: the Morgendorffer sisters must team up here tonight to get an early shot at their greatest rivals."
(The camera zooms out slowly to show Daria sitting alone on a bench, reading a book as usual. She's wearing a green athletic midriff top and matching shorts. Her glasses are still on.)
Defoe: "Daria, at Is It Mania Yet you joined Jane Lane and Stacy Rowe in effectively disbanding the Fashion Club. At Esteemster Series, you teamed with other LFC originals to conquer the Axis. Now you face a different challenge, perhaps an even more personal one—and I see that you and your sister are preparing for the match in separate locker rooms. I hope you'll forgive me, but that's not a good sign."
Daria: "I beg to differ, Claire. It's an excellent sign. Because it is a perfect example of what will happen tonight. If I had any illusions about being able to trust Quinn, they were helpfully removed last week when she left me to wrestle the fashion zombies alone."
Defoe: "Zombies? Daria, I really don't think…"
Daria: "Obviously. (Defoe glares) They're mindless slaves, they go after brains, and we killed them at Is It Mania Yet. Yes. I'm pretty sure they're zombies."
(Cue video replay of the match, which was supposed to be the sisters against Tiffany Blum-Deckler and Tori Jericho, but Daria is taking them on by herself and having a rough go of it. Quinn finally runs down when the end seems almost near, blind-tags Daria and takes out her former allies for the win, stealing all the glory.)
Defoe: "To be fair, she did say she was late because of car trouble…
Daria: (angry now) "With her date driving her in a brand new SUV? Give me a break. She did what she does best: coast through life, bury everyone else and take credit for their accomplishments. (looks at camera) I know you can hear me, Quinn. We are teaming, but we are not allies. According to you, we're not even sisters. And that suits me just fine." (walks away)
Defoe: "Tim, Janet, it's not looking good. Back to you."
O'Neill: "I've got a bad feeling about this."
Barch: "Ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee! Daria's got a psycho after her and Quinn will never have any peace while Sandi's still around. If they can't work together tonight, these two career women are in great personal AND professional danger."