“From Eden” by Hozier
“Babe, there’s something tragic about you
something so magic about you
don’t you agree
Babe, there’s something lonesome about you
something so wholesome about you
Get closer to me
Honey you’re familiar like my mirror years ago
Idealism in prison, chivalry fell on it’s sword
Innocence died screaming, honey ask me I should know
I slithered here from Eden just to sit outside your door”
Two grey eyes peer through the darkness. The growling starts. The eyes get smaller as we zoom out, from the darkness extend a length of steel chain. The chain starts to rumble and the snarls echo through the darkness. Like a bolt, the animal runs out of his enclosure. The camera slams backwards as the cameraman lands with a THUD, showcasing his sneakers in the shot and the chain finally tenses. A barking, snarling, drooling vicious beast is attached to the end of the chain. His name is Wolfie. Part grey wolf, part husky he booms threats directly at the camera. Wolfie snaps at the cameraman’s shoe as the camera backpedals a bit more away from the dog house and white-picket fence.
From a patio on the side of the shot, walks Joshua Rapture walks out. Dressed down in a pair of blue jeans and a New Horizons polo shirt. Despite the deafening barks of the seemingly rabid dog, he is calm. He is serene.
The dog obeys its master and becomes silent. Joshua take a knee and holds out his hand with a treat in it. The dog sniffs but does nothing until Joshua speaks.
The dog eats and Joshua pets his fur.
Joshua: I bought this guy from a shelter in El Paso, he doesn’t take kindly to strangers, he rips up the garden, barks at every bird he sees and only answers to Spanish. But without me he would be dead. Without him, my life wouldn’t be complete. You should take solace in how I treat my pets, Andellion.
Some might say “What kind of creature do we have here?” As to say what exactly are your intentions when you claim you will “Kill” me? Because I believe you don’t have THAT in you. You don’t have that killer instinct like me and Wolfie do. I know you too well, I see your pride and your chivalry and I RAISE you one Killer Instinct.
For months I’ve been finding out what drives your machine little Moonwater, and it’s not vengeance as you think it is. No, your machine is driven by foolishness. You foolishly think you will be the one to upset the big, bad wolf at House of Cards, but you won’t.
You will not and can not defeat me Andellion. You’ve been in your sick bed for too long, with no-one to rub your aching head. How are those scars anyways? I mean, I’ve got a couple, mostly from myself, but you’ve been scalped! Stripped of the very fur you hibernate in! Or do man-otter things not hibernate? No matter, after House of Cards I get the feeling you’ll be going for a very long nap.
I think I know you best when I sleep, Andellion. Did I mention that I dream about you? In fact, you’re the ONLY thing I dream about. I feel like that’s when I “get” what you’re all about the most. Because you are all about dignity right? And what is dignity? Do you have the “dignity” to go through with this match? Will you have a “dignified” explanation for the blood you’ve shed, for the pain you inflict? You seem to be shocked and aghast every single time you bring up your Grandfather Ody or whatever his name is, but yet you seem to be attracted to the same violence and bloodshed that he inflicted all those years ago. Funny isn’t it? How history LOVES to repeat itself.
A Falcon flies overhead, both Joshua and Wolfie look up. After an uncomfortable silence, Wolfie barks and turns to the camera, looking a bit disheveled.
Joshua: History loves to repeat itself, and how it has because for the last few months it has been. Rapture versus Moonwater, Moonwater versus Rapture in Battlebowl, Moonwater and Xristus versu Ouja and Rapture, on and on and ON. Night filled with anarchy, I awoke. The mornings came, stiff with rain. I thought the sun would never shine again. But now I can see it peeking through the clouds, I see myself FREE from the burden that is Andellion Moonwater. I see nights filled with silent sleep, and roosters crowing in the morn. Such is the life I will enjoy in a post-Moonwater era.
But first we meet, Andellion. First, you and I must fight and I believe we will both leave changed by the events that will occur. We will be chained at the neck, like dogs! And I just have one request, Moonwater.
TAKE ME TO CHURCH!
Beat the holy hell out of me Moonwater, give me all that you got. Because when the bell rings, when it’s finally over, I want it to mean something. I want to know that you gave me everything you got, EVERY SINGLE THING! And then, I want you to know… it wasn’t good enough. And don’t worry, I’m not going to KILL you… not when my dog could use you as a new squeaky toy.
The dog starts growling again.
Joshua: This, Andellion Moonwater.
This is my design.
Wolfie, el Lobo debe permanecer en estado latente.
The dog stops growling and start panting, tongue lolling, Joshua Rapture smiles and in the background. In the background, the sun sets.
“A delusional freak who lives inside his own fantasy world.”
“These people have chosen you as their hero, they’ve chosen you as their KING, but guess what? THEY’RE WRONG!”
“Moonwater? The freaks are running rampant in NAPW.”
“He is too brave and too stupid to stay away.”
“There is someone out there worse than Joshua Rapture. There is a blight in NAPW that only I can remove.”
There is a hustle and bustle about the gym floor of New Horizons Fitness Center. Men and woman slamming weights and running in motion on treadmills and ellipticals, but there is no noise. There is only silence. Muted, the camera pans through the floor and slowly a whine rises. Like feedback from an amplifier, the whine grows and we come closer to our main attraction. Like razor blades on a cello, the noise grows and focuses on Joshua Rapture. In the centre of a boxing ring, thumb and index finger connected in a perfect circle, he sits cross-legged. He opens his eyes, the noise stops.
Joshua: Everybody hates me and I know it. I know. Do you know what that does to a person? To have an entire stadium of people not booing, but loathing? Of course you don’t.
What can I say? Do I have everybodies attention now?
I hate this feeling I have, this black boiling heat coming from my heart. I have been to confession and I’ve said my Hail Mary’s for the things I’ve done, but this hate doesn’t go away.
I can’t deal with hatred I have for Andellion Moonwater, I never have been and I can’t control it any longer.
Sometimes I think how things could’ve differed if I had faced someone else in my debut. I was supposed to win Battlebowl, I was supposed to win Canada Cup… I once claimed to see the future, but now my mind is so hazy. I’m clouded by the fog that is Andellion Moonwater.
I don’t want to care anymore Moonwater, that’s how much I hate you. I don’t want to care about The New Dawn, I don’t want to care about New Horizons. I just want to get my hands on you. We’re getting so close to House of Cards now. I count the hours.
And you may think that this feud between myself and Moonwater is just about The New Dawn versus the Honor and Royalty of Crystalwood, but it’s not. It’s about something more deeprooted than that, it’s about looking up to somebody and seeing everything you believed in shattered and broken in front of your own eyes. It’s about fallen heroes.
I’ve been praying again and again and again because I knew one day I would be face to face, chained at the throat with my nemesis. And when you look into my eyes I will see not only you but the people you represent. The people who sit eating their popcorn and drinking their sodas who think they’re better than me. Know what I do to you, I also do to them. I do it for their own good. I do it because I love them. But sometimes love hurts, oh yes.
I am born of your poisoned society so I will become a monster to fight the monsters of this world. Your time in NAPW will be done. And know the men like me will come out of the woodwork. Know that a minority of people are starting to bask in the glow of The New Dawn. The cogs are starting to become disenchanting with the machine, just… like… ME.
There are people just like me in the world, some of you may hate what I believe in but there are those out there that submit to the glory of The New Dawn, and they are better than each and every member of NAPW. Most of you are too weak to bear the weight of it. I will take the responsibility of taking the brunt of your misplaced anger Andellion.
That is all I have to say right now.
Joshua closes his eyes. Fade…
We open to a crackling fire and zoom out slowly to a large audacious lounge chair. In the chair lazes Joshua Rapture, his knees up to his chest, he is clutching a steaming mug of Hot Cocoa sipping it slowly. He inhales the aroma and sighs. He stares at the camera with spite.
Joshua: What was it I said all those moons ago? That light was the most important thing in the world, The Light of The New Dawn that is. And it still is, oh yes. But I watch that first video and am shocked at how much I am changed. NAPW has changed me. Because I came here with a mission to spread the Light, and I did. I spread it like a virus out into the corners of the universe, but you rejected it. You rejected ME.
Joshua sips his Cocoa
Joshua: And what was it that I did that made you reject me? Was it when I went to Battlebowl and came out more scarred than anybody else? Do you reject me because of Andellion Moonwater? Well let me tell you something about Andellion Moonwater. I hate him. I hate how OBSESSED I’ve become with him. At first I thought it was because a GOPHER doesn’t belong in a wrestling ring. But now… Now I can’t open my eyes without seeing him, I can’t eating without hearing his weasily whine. I hate the fact that all I do is talk about Andellion Moonwater and he doesn’t have the decency to respond. Canada Cup or no, we will meet once more and this WILL end Moonwater.
Joshua sips his Cocoa
Joshua: Did you reject me because I warped Xristus? That’s right, I WARPED YOU XRISTUS! I paid off The Order, the good that does me now that Ouja isn’t returning my phone calls. I paid them for knowledge, for glory and for CHANGE. They changed you Xristus, when they hauled you off. Maybe you realize it, maybe you don’t. But I think you do, oh yes. I think you can feel that anger and hatred boiling in your bones and you don’t know where it’s come from. I came from me! I’m IN you now, Xristus. I mean, spouting religious nonsense? Using the innocent to further your own agenda? [Rapture hisses] THAT’S MY GIMMICK.
And YOU J.C. Chapman, you’re one of the worst THINGS I’ve ever seen in my life. I mean, you come to the ring claiming you’re a “Jesus Freak” but you look like a Devil’s Reject. How dare you even claim your faith, how DARE you. Because tattooing yourself up and drinking watered down concert beers is NOT how to celebrate one’s faith. At least not where I come from. In fact, growing up in the heart of Texas could have done a lot of good for you and you’re Uncle because the first time you came home with an ear piercing your daddy would’ve whipped you sideways! I guess I’ll just have to whip you for him and ruin your “glorious debut” that you don’t seem to care about.
Joshua sips his Cocoa
Joshua: Team Not of This World? Oh look another team that’s stealing my schtick! How many God’s are there? Just one my children, and HE is angry. Does anybody wonder what happened to The Hands and what their “mission” was? I do. And whatever happened to Nathan Vibe? He was supposed to enter Battlebowl but somebody made sure that didn’t happen. [Joshua hisses again] I WONDER WHO.
Terry Brandon threatened to fire me. But he won’t. Want to know why? Ok. I’ll tell you. Because i-Pay-Per-View buys are up when NAPW brings me in. Because ticket sales are up when I take a railroad spike and try to drive it through the other side of somebody’s head. Because of bloodlust and insanity. Because I’ll take the bumps everybody else is scared to take. Because I’ll bring the barbed wire if you bring the cash.
Because I’m crazy.
Because I’m what’s best for business.
Because it was preordained for me to win the NAPW World Title, and all I have to do now is wait.
Because I’M JOSHUA RAPTURE.
Joshua’s eyes finally leave the camera, looking down he has spilt some Cocoa on his shirt.
Joshua: Now look what you made me do? I spilt my Cocoa.
Joshua starts unbuttoning his shirt, looking at the camera with ferocity. The Camera zooms to his face.
Joshua:….What is it that the Goat-Masked Man says again? Oh yes.
Fade to black.
February 14, 2014
The room is silent except for the creaking door in which Joshua Rapture opens and walks in. He is wearing a three-piece suit holding a large bouquet of roses.
Joshua exclaims: Pearl!
Directly in his line of sight is an old frail white-haired woman in a wheelchair. There is something familiar about her face. She smiles.
Pearl: Hubert! Oh my, you shaved!
Joshua contemplates this exchange whilst subconsciously rubbing his clean-shaven face. He smiles back.
Joshua: Well it’s been said that I look like Grandpa without the signature beard! These, my dear, are the finest roses. For the finest women I know!
Joshua presents the flowers to Pearl, she blushes and fans herself with her hand.
Pearl: Oh, Hubert. Have you come to take me dancing?
Joshua once again studies this woman again, before picking her out of her chair gently but with ease.
Joshua: Yes, my dear. I do believe I have!
Joshua takes her hand a spins her slowly, her feet resting on top of his. Echoes of giggles and quiet shrieks of happiness ring through the room as other tenants watch dreamily thinking of past dances danced and songs sung. But soon the dance is done and Joshua places Pearl back in her chair, dropping next to her in a rocking chair. She places her fingertips on her temples, her face an expression of pure joy.
Pearl: Ahh hahaha hehe, my world has gone all topsy-turvy!
Joshua: Hehe, yes, that seems be going around.
They share a glance then, but nothing is said. Pearl’s eyes sparkle, Joshua’s eyes sparkle. They have the same eyes. Pearl breaks the silence and gaze with a loud yawn.
Pearl: Ahhhhhh. Please forgive me, but I’m rather tired now and would like to get to bed.
Pearl motions to man in a white coat and he comes to take her away. Joshua hands her the flowers again and she sighs another “Thank You, Hubert.” Sleep almost taking her now. Joshua kisses her forehead and nods to the man in white. An insignia of a Sun can briefly be seen tattooed on the man’s hand, in between the thumb and forefinger.
Joshua sighs and smiles, rocking back and forth in his chair. Rubbing his chin, he thinks of growing a beard.
Joshua: Happy Valentine’s… Grandma
February 26, 2014, Moments After Xristus/Moonwater vs. Ouja/Rapture
The black curtains of NAPW whip open as two large men with the word “Security” pasted in white on their black t-shirts escort Joshua Rapture. He smiles as he brushes them off and heads to the back of the NAPW locker-room. The locker-room is buzzes with noise as the only man in a suit gets into the face of Joshua Rapture. Terry Brandon is beating red.
Terry Brandon: Where’s Ouja??
Terry grits his teeth, angrily. Joshua shrugs, smiling and holds out one hand palm up. Terry takes out an envelope and shoves it into Joshua’s chest.
Terry Brandon: I should fire you for what you did out there.
Joshua stuffs the envelope into the waistband of his tights and calls out at Terry, who is storming off.
Joshua: Hey Terry! Tell me again what those iPay-Per-View numbers are again? What number are we again in Federation Rankings? Was it Ninth? No, I remember. It was SIXTH!
The room is silent now, all attention on Joshua Rapture. Silently, Joshua raises his arm high over his head. Fist clenched, his hand is covered in blood that isn’t his. At the centre of the fist, a TUFT OF HAIR. The locker-room is silent no-more as someone lobs a roll of wrist tape, hitting Joshua in the cheek. Joshua gets the message and heads out the Fire-Exit door, picking up a New Horizons gym bag that has been thrown outside in the snow.
March 2, 2014, A Small Cafe, Noon
At a table in a small cafe Joshua Rapture sits across from his Grandmother Pearl, playing cards and laughing. Joshua clears his throat and stares at Pearl intensely.
Joshua: Grandma… Do you remember that story you used to tell me when I was young?
Pearl: I… I think so, yes. Oh, how did it go again? “Once upon a time, there was a kingdom called Carbondale”…
Joshua: Hmm…No, i don’t think it was Carbondale, Grandma. At least that’s not what I remember.
Pearl: Oh, of course. Not Carbondale, it was Clovertown. ..Or was it Campington? I …uhh… Hubert? Joshua?
Beads of sweat escape from Pearl’s brow, as she stares off trying to focus. Joshua looks worried.
Pearl: I ..uhh. Oh I get so confused sometimes, Hubert.
Joshua pats Pearl on the hand and consoles his Grandmother.
Joshua: It’s alright Grandma, don’t worry.
Joshua waves his hand and Pearl’s caretaker comes to wheel the Alzheimer’s patient away. Joshua kisses her hand, signaling the end of the Lunch. The Caretaker starts to roll Pearl away, but Pearl turns her head to speak with Joshua once more.
Pearl: Joshua? The name of the Kingdom? ….Was it Crystalwood?
Joshua packs up the cards and smiles.
Joshua: Yes, Grandma. I believe it was.
March 3, 2014, Garden of Memories Cemetery, Sweetwater, Texas
Joshua Rapture stands at the front of a pathway going through The Garden of Memories Cemetery. He inhales deeply and exhales, heading down the path slowly.
Rapture: In the cold mornings of the Spring my grandfather would take me fishing on the Colorado River, half an hour away from Sweetwater. We would go out on his rickety boat, him with his thermos of coffee and a smaller thermos of Hot Cocao for me. We would fish for hours on that river, he would tell me the secrets of the universe. I miss him more now than ever.
I was twelve when my Grandfather stopped taking me fishing, the visits became less and less frequent and eventually they just stopped. There was a burger place we frequently would visit after fishing, there was this one waitress. After a burger my Grandfather would finish off his coffee with a slice of pie, I guess the waitress was offering up more than Key Lime. At 16 my Grandparents divorced, just too fed up with fighting.
Joshua pauses at a headstone, collecting his thoughts for a moment and then moves on.
Rapture: What I did was box, from 16 on. At first it was just something to pass the time, one of the few interesting courses they offered. I was a natural athlete already doing a bit of track & basketball, but I really sunk my teeth into boxing. The sweet science, the ebb and flow, Boxing just came naturally to me.
Boxing was FUN, i could run circles around my opponents and I KNEW it, everyone else knew it too. By 18 I was a top prospect in the United States, and I was GOING places. I left the town of Sweetwater behind, the streets I played in as a child, ALL of it.
The National Boxing Grand Prix, 21 years old. Finally, a chance to prove myself as a REAL force in Pugilism. I made it to the Finals, I roped the dopes and knocked out blockheads. Round 1 of the Finals were in my favour, anyone who watches the footage can see that, my form perfect, my strategy solid. Then, Round Two, eight seconds in, a right hook I wasn’t expecting. Knockout.
Joshua stops and sits on a bench, admiring the flowers growing naturally next to a headstone and turns to the camera.
Joshua: Now I admit, I’ve watched the footage thousands of times, and not for the reasons you think. Not because that was the day my boxing career ended, no. But because that was the moment I saw the face of God. I slumped to the canvas with a crowd that let out a sigh of collective pity, and I laughed. And in those fleeting moments I saw the strings that connect us all. I saw myself puking my guts out and working relentlessly to be the best athlete I could be, I saw my Grandparents screaming at each other, I saw myself as a boy looking up at my Grandfather sipping coffee and behind him the Sun was rising from the horizon and the face behind the stars whose hands that pluck the puppets strings. I had seen HIM, and the how all these choices that everybody makes all around us make an unchangeable Destiny that we must follow. I had seen a NEW DAWN.
Joshua leaves the bench and continues down a row of gravestones, off the beaten path.
Rapture: I’m the same age that my grandfather had his son, my father. In the past I’ve made if very clear about myself, the boxing and the New Dawn. My grandfather was the one who taught me that it was never too old to make a new start in life. To start over again, a lovely thought.
With The New Dawn, I provide a service, I offer a choice. The offer is this: A lifestyle change. In the arms of The New Dawn we provide wayward and lost beings with a new perspective on life, a positive perspective. Whether you’re a 40 something whose tried every diet and weight loss plan known and just can’t seem to shed those shameful pounds. Maybe you’re a person who has turned away from the lies that our society tries to shove down your throat. You see The New Dawn isn’t one thing, it’s a web of goals and support systems ensuring that you succeed in whatever aspect of your life. The New Dawn is a community.
Joshua stops at a headstone, it sits on top of an especially thick base. The name on the grave is Hubert, the surname has been blurred.
Rapture: My Grandfather went out to the Colorado River again. I suppose he would’ve said we went to fish, but I think it’s more likely that he went out there to reflect. Anyways…well… Do you really want to know the rest? The proper scientific term for what happened? What I will tell you is this: It wasn’t his heavy heart that took him, it wasn’t his fuzzy-brained memory. It was the river that washed him away…
…And I know that one day, I will walk into that river wearing a sheet of pure white. I will wade into the crystal blue rivers where I once fished and I will simply drift away. All that I hope is that by that time I will have left a positive influence in this world, in NAPW. It’s all I’ve wanted since the beginning.
Joshua kicks the base of the grave and curiously it slides out. Joshua takes a knee and grabs something from the compartment.
Joshua: What you don’t understand, what you have to understand is that my Grandfather wasn’t a farmer or factory worker, is that my Grandfather was a writer. This is the book I was meant to find.
I’m not crazy, to whomever is watching this. Abbey Graves, Clancy King, J.C. Chapman, Terry Brandon and other members of NAPW, know that I’m not crazy. Know my story and know the truth, because there is someone out there worse than Joshua Rapture. There is someone in this world who has lied more than anybody else. There is a blight in NAPW that only I can remove, and I’m not done yet. I won’t be done until I’m holding The World Championship.
Joshua opens the book, sending dust flying out everywhere. He begins.
“Once upon a time, there was a kingdom called Crystalwood”
Fade to black.
The automatic doors of New Horizons Fitness Center slide open; the camera is focused on the back of a cloaked figure. He approaches the Front Foyer Check-In counter. Looking up from a computer, a girl in a New Horizons polo-shirt is shocked to see the man in front of her. The man hisses, no words need to be said and she quickly points to an office in the back. The Serpent King leads the way, camera following behind.
Inside the office, Joshua Rapture has his feet propped up on a small cluttered desk. He is wearing the Brad Maddox special of a long sleeve dress shirt, pleats, a tie and a one-size-too-small suit vest. He points his index finger up, indicating Ouja to wait as he chats on his cell in the other hand.
Joshua: Yessir Mr. Winchell! Thank you again!
Joshua hangs up the phone and turns to Ouja, scattering more papers around his desk. Joshua gets up and starts making his way to Ouja, hand extended.
Joshua: Wee-GEE!! My fellow master of the squared circle! Come in! Would you like anything? Water? Coffee? Lamb’s blood in a Ram’s horn? Ha-ha! I kid! Take a seat.
Ouja does not shake this man’s hand.
Joshua: You know, in Texas, they have a saying: Don’t offer your hand to a rattlesnake, unless you’re willing to get bit.
Joshua walks away from Ouja and closes the office doors, shutting the blinds as well.
Joshua: I assure you Ouja, when I came looking for you on the night of Battlebowl, I was ready for you to refuse. Yes, I was delirious from Miss Graves’ assault [Ouja hisses at the name]. And desperate for knowledge that would defeat Xristus. [Again, Ouja hisses] But I know that you are the smartest in The Order of Orochi. I know exactly what The Order IS. … And most importantly… I know that without that envelope I gave to you that night, that you would have a useless talisman in that cloak of yours…
Ouja slithers his hand into his cloak, grasping something and whispers under his breath. Joshua stares a hole right through him, leaning on the edge of his desk.
Joshua: There’s no need for hypnotism here, Ouja. I’m already proving myself to be an affable ally aren’t I? I broke and bloodied Moonwater. And there’s only one man in this room with a victory over Xristus.
Ouja: Xristusssss…-[Rapture cuts off Ouja]
Rapture: XRISTUS is a threat. Plain and simple. He’s a giant of a man with a chip on his shoulder. He THINKS he’s doing the right thing, but the people of NAPW have warped him into their own little puppet. Oh, but the potential in that boy! The potential to be a soldier in my –Ahem- OUR war on the twisted minds of New Alberta’s fanbase.
Ouja: He issss not alone. As I told you, Missio Dei supportssss its ssssoldiers. They’ve been a thorn in the Order’s sssside since the 1940’ssss…
Joshua: But just imagine what we could do with inside information into the group? If I – WE – could bring him onside, he could lead the charge to dismantling them.
Ouja thinks for a long moment, slowly walking to one of the windows and pulling down a blind to peek through.
Ouja: And the Otter Prince(sssss)?
Joshua: Andellion, quite simply, is a boy who should be practicing his curtsy and not anywhere near a wrestling ring. But he is brave and too stupid to stay away. But there are cracks in their armour after our last encounter at TLC. Cracks that we must exploit if we are to move forward, yes?
You and I, Ouja, stand ready to reveal the true faces of the so-called heroes. We stand ready to strip the masks off of monsters and burn their kingdoms to the ground. And in the ashes of our enemies, in the ash, we will stand above all. We will stand like beacons of hope, ready to bring in the wayward souls and give them faith in a New World Order! We will rob the kings and give to the people!
These people think there’s power in chanting a name, or changing a channel, but we will show them REAL power Ouja! With your Heart and my Light, we will blind the heretics and embrace the feeble. There is so much to discuss, Ouja, but not here. Here we are still men, but I know a place where we can research that stone of yours a little more in depth. Just one second.
Joshua taps a button on the underside of his desk and a bookshelf on the wall slides open revealing a staircase going down into darkness.
Joshua: Now, Mr. Ouja. Would you like to see MY library?
Ouja looks at the staircase, then to Joshua, then cackles with evil glee.
*This was co-written with my fellow RPer Ouja: The Sepent King, from NAPW*
Monday December 30, 2013 8:00 am
Two Pairs of feet, one in finely tailored dress pants and shiny black dress shoes. The other pair of feet are barefoot, the bottoms of blue hospital scrubs are seen. Slowly panning up, a cane is shown next to the barefooted man. The man in hospital pants is not wearing a shirt, his upper torso wrapped in gauze. The other man is wearing an exquisite suit, his eyes sparkle from underneath his horn-rimmed glasses. In the hands of the bespectacled man is a thin duotang. Joshua Rapture barely holds himself up, being mere hours since he left the Battlebowl cage. On Joshua’s arm hangs a hospital wristband.
Bespectacled Man: Due to the unfortunate consequences of Battlebowl, the doctors have advised Mr. Rapture not to speak for a few days. I will speak on his behalf and on behalf of The New Dawn for the time being.
The Man in the horn-rimmed glasses opens the duotang and clears his throat. Zooming out a bit, it is made clear that they are in the foyer of New Horizons Fitness Centre.
Bespectacled Man: Mr. Joshua Rapture, would first like to thank New Alberta Professional Wrestling for the opportunity given to him at Battlebowl. We at The New Dawn hereby waive any liability to “NAPW” for the injuries sustained to Mr. Rapture during this contest and shall not seek any claims for the damages, Medical or otherwise.
Joshua whispers something in the other man’s ear, the man nods in agreement.
Bespectacled Man: Secondly, we have been informed that Mr. Rapture has been signed for a one-on-one contest with the man with the codename: Xristus. Mr. Rapture gladly accepts this offer and states his intent to defeat Xristus and continue on his mission up the ranks of NAPW. We here at The New Dawn consider Mr. Rapture a top contender for the NAPW Championship.
On the subject of Battlebowl and its eventual winner Ms. Abigail Graves, we extend our warmest congratulations. It is no secret that Miss Graves has captured the hearts of the NAPW audience, it is her love for this sport that Mr. Rapture admires. In fact, Mr. Rapture find himself and Miss Graves similar in this area. We however, can not abide the extensive cursing and insults that she has hurled at Mr. Rapture and other members of the NAPW roster. We sincerely hope the NAPW take our suggestion to provide a “swear jar” to Miss Graves to heart.
In the past, Miss Graves has stated that Mr. Rapture is quote, “A second-rate boxer turned second-rate wrestler”. Mr. Rapture considers this very insulting. Mr. Rapture’s boxing exploits as a top-rate boxer have been renown worldwide, so Miss Graves’ statement simply falls flat. Secondly, Mr. Rapture expressed his attitude that his performance at Coronation and Battlebowl proceed to outline the makings of a very astute Sports Entertainer, despite both contests being losses. Mr. Rapture hopes that his performance against Miss Graves has swayed her opinions on him and would welcome another contest between the two.
Thank you for your time, now if you excuse us we have an important business meeting to prepare for.
Friday January 10, 2014 5:00pm
We are in a lowly lit room, filled with sparsely scattered candles. In the middle of the room is a large massage table. There is a figure on the table, but is too dark to make out much else. The figure clears his throat, his voice quite gravely. Here lies Joshua Rapture.
Rapture: December Twenty-Ninth. Two-Thousand and Thirteen. A host of fanatics fill Edmonton’s Exposition Center. Several employees of New Alberta Professional Wrestling wrench together a hellish design. Inside this design, six competitors fight. Inside this design, hope is not an option.
My name is Joshua Rapture, I am the Leader of The New Dawn. But you already knew that. You people, you seem to know so much about me. You know nothing. The so-called “fans” of NAPW, I am losing my patience with them.
How dare they boo me, Andellion. When they know so little about Honour. So little about respect.
Andellion Moonwater. Andy. Let me ask you a personal question about these people in the bleachers. Do they really deserve men like us? Do they deserve the presence of Kings?
You see Moonwater, I’m trying so hard. SO HARD. To be The Light. I’m trying so hard to bring the pigs out of the muck, but I cannot do it by myself Andellion. They choose fire Moonwater, they choose violence. And what am I but a snake to them?
Two women of The New Dawn come to the side of Joshua. One wraps around a towel at his waist and the other gives him his cane to walk with. He slowly limps into the light and his chest is bare, all up the one arm is pink scratches, deep red stitches on the one shoulder and some light pink scarring on his pectorals. On the injuries, LEECHES have been placed.
Rapture: I had a vision. I had a vision of NAPW, shining and golden. I had a vision of myself holding the NAPW championship high about my head. But YOU took that away from me, Moonwater. You took it away and made me into what I am. You MADE me do it, Moonwater, because you make me crazy. Because I love too much. Because I love you.
I want the best for you Andellion, I want the best for Crystalwood. NAPW, it’s no place for you. You cannot prove yourself here, you cannot have Honour here. These people loath Honour, take it from me. All I give is LOVE, and they spit in my face. What can I do? Whan can I do but sink to their level? These people have warped me and made me a monster. So be it Moonwater, if they want a monster, I’ll be their monster. Being Merciful has no benefit to me anymore.
You defeated me once, but it was a hollow victory. Then you were left in a pool of blood at Battlebowl. Is that how you prove yourself as King? Listen to me, listen to Uncle Joshua. Take your Pride and prove yourself somewhere else. Because you CAN fight, and you CAN defeat me…. But you cannot defeat the Rising Sun. And I will guide NAPW towards the Holy Light, even if I have to drag the people kicking and screaming.
Sunday January 19, 2014 10:30am
Inside a small chapel, Joshua Rapture slinks behind a podium underneath the arch. On the side of the podium leans his trusted cane. He is wearing a finely pressed suit without an undershirt, under his suit jacket fresh gauze has been wrapped on his one shoulder. When he speak, his voice has a light scratch to it.
Rapture: My children! My members of The New Dawn. The day is coming when I face the six-foot-eight two-hundred-and-eighty-five pound man with the Codename: Xristus. I stand before you two-hundred-and-fifteen pounds, not taller than six-foot-four. I am outmatched in power and outmatched possibly in speed. I stand like David outside the mouth of a cave, waiting for Goliath.
Yet, I do not throw stones like David. No, I throw strike with surgical precision. My body is torn following the insanity of Battlebowl, my mind spinning ever since. Because you see, Xristus has come to NAPW with a mission to rectify evils and injustices. He comes to us a strange wanderer with his hand out asking for a loaf of bread, but how can we trust this man to do what he says he is here for?
Children, my mission is simple. I have come here to cleanse the filth in pro-wrestling, to get rid of the liars and subnormals. I have come to bring morals back to an immoral world. I want justice and I want the glory of The Lord to spread across every corner of the world. Quite simply, I am Xristus!
I am Xristus when the World Council of Churches allows me into their organization. I am Xristus when I am running ahead at full steam, ready to strike an opponent. I am Xristus when I raise my enemies up and force them to submit to my will!
Should I be admonished that I had to convince an old Pastor to allow me entrance to the World Council of Churches? Should I be jeered for using my might and my knowledge to do everything in my power to defeat mutants like Andellion Moonwater? What makes Xristus and I so different?
Xristus,I have done everything just to get to know you better. I have strongarmed Priests, I have approached Snakes. I begged and pleaded with Terry Brandon, just to get videotapes of your previous matches. But there is so little on you, Xristus. Why is that? What really happened to your parents? What happened to the family that raised you? Why is it that everyone who gets close to you end up in the Obituaries??
I’ve been turned away by biblical scholars when I say the phrase “Missio Dio”, that I’ve begun to believe that these are just ravings of a poor orphan boy who grew up in California with no-one but his own mind to keep him company. It has dawned on me who and what you really are, Xristus. You’re a lost soul, and you’re looking for a home. You are still a little boy who was thrown away to the mean streets of a broken world. What you are, is a big fish in a too small pond.
Let me help you Xristus, let me show you the way to defeat the evils of men. Come, Xristus, join me in The New Dawn. Together we can spread the good word. Together, you’ll have a home. Of course the rebuilding process must come first. Yes Xristus first I must break you down. First I must make you submit. I have to Xristus, you have grown to attached to your own ravings, you rely too heavily on the admiration of the crowd. But I shall tear down your soul, and rebuild ut anew. I shall hold you up as a shining example of a perfect soldier in the name of The New Dawn.
Fear not Xristus, for the pain is only temporary.
Come with us Xristus. Find your place in this world. Come HOME.
A woman comes on stage and hands Joshua a guitar. He smiles, and sings.
Rapture: I was talking to a lady a few days ago
And these are the words she said…
The New Dawn joins in….
Fade to black…
A Fire Exit sign buzzes into focus, in the dark the Fire Exit door opens as a cloaked man rushes by and turns the corner into the parking lot of Edmonton Expo Center. As we turn the corner a large rush of sound can be heard as a huge crowd exits the Main doors, let by the winner of Battlebowl: Abbey Graves. The crowd still buzzing, starts to chant, “AB-BEY, AB-BEY, AB-BEY“. The young Miss Graves is all smiles, but has one hand holding her midsection quite tenderly. All the while, the cloaked man watches on. A SUV with her entourage pulls up to send Abbey on her way , a chorus of groans comes from the crowd. Abbey quells the crowd down by taking a shining object of her middle finger and hold it high over her head, stepping into the car..
Abbey Graves: WE FUCKING DID IT!!!!!!!!!!
The crowd goes “Banana” for this. A dark van pulls up to the cloaked figure, far from the eyes of the Battlebowl after party. The front passenger door opens as a man with dark hair wearing horn-rimmed glasses smiles at the cloaked figure. His polo shirt reads “New Horizon’s Fitness Center“
Bespectacled Man: We have a proposition for you.
The cloaked figure says nothing. The man in the horn-rimmed glasses opens the dashboard and takes out a plain yellow manila envelope, it is quite thick.
Bespectacled Man: We will reward you quite handsomely for your co-operation.
The cloaked figure says nothing. The passenger side-door slides open. Inside is the bloody remains of Joshua Rapture. One woman wipes away at his bare chest and arm with an already quite bloody rag, dressing the wounds as she goes. Another woman (presumably the one who opened the door) goes to work at Joshua’s black tights with a pair of scissors, shredding them. Joshua’s teeth are gritted and he is visibly shaking, he barely forces half a smile.
Joshua: T-tell me everything. Ev-EV-everything you k-know about k-k-XRISTUS!
The cloaked figure starts to HISSssssssss………
The dark-haired man with horned rim glasses is at a desk shaking hands with an older white-haired man with a clerical collar. Members of their respective faith.
Pastor: Thank you for showing me around this wonderful facility, its unfortunate that I didn’t get to see.. Mr. Rapture, is that correct?
Bespectacled Man: Yes! Quite an ironic name I suppose, unfortunately he is currently… indisposed.
Pastor: Ah, well as you may be well aware of this, “The New Dawn” seems a bit too… erratic to be included in the World Council of Churches.
Bespectacled Man: Think nothing of it!
The horned-rim glasses man extends his hand and the Pastor begrudgingly accepts it. The two men shake hands once again as the Pastor heads for the door.
Bespectacled Man: Oh! Before you go, I just remembered that we are quite good friend with one of your missionaries.
The Pastor turns.
Pastor: Oh? Who?
Bespectacled Man: Xristus.
The Pastor’s eyes widen, he frowns.
Pastor: I’m afraid I don’t know recognize that name.
The man with the horned rim glasses takes out a briefcase and unlatches it, facing the Pastor. A golden glow emerges from within the briefcase, washing the Pastor’s face with light. He doesn’t look impressed.
Bespectacled Man: But we believe that you do. And we can be very convincing when we want to be.
Pastor: You’re going to try to bribe me? A member of the cloth? I’m afraid that won’t work.
A figure emerges from a side door. Joshua Rapture is shirtless, his torso covered by a shoulder wrap. Though he is wearing finely tailored dress pants & shoes, he hold a cane in his non-injured arm. He slowly walks toward the desk, sturdying himself on the cane.
Joshua: I agree…. ACHHOOO!
The Pastor looks startled by the sneeze, among other things. Two women appear behind him, blocking the doorway.
Bespectacled Man: Have you ever tried Yoga? It will change your life. I promise.
The man in the horned-rim glasses smiles wide. Joshua Rapture is all frowns though, he slowly makes his way right up to the
Pastor: Wha- Why are you doing this??
Joshua: You didn’t say “God Bless You” when I sneezed….
Joshua smiles. Fade…
Abbey Graves & Ouja The Serpent King were used with permission.
“A line of trees you can see movement in them. The camera zooms in a bit and you can see more of a pack of Antlerless Elk. In a whisper, Joshua speaks.
Rapture: I do this in the name of The New Dawn.
He releases the arrow…“
It hisses through the air and strikes the elk broadside, the other elk run in a panic with the rest of The New Dawn hooting and hollering after them. Shots are fired, but seem far off. Joshua Rapture walks up to his fallen deer, both whistling, the deer’s lung collapsed. Joshua starts to sing the opening of Death’s Got a Warrant by Patty Griffin.
Rapture: You can’t hide. You can’t Hiiide. No, you can’t hide, because you don’t know hoooowww.
He takes out a hunting knife from one of his many pockets….
Cut to a close up of Joshua Rapture‘s face. His eyes closed, breathing heavily, almost humming. His eyes open and for a brief second we see a hideous creature with an offset nose and snarling canines, but is quickly hidden by that signature Used-Car Salesman smile.
Rapture: Do you still believe in God? Said the preacher to the astronaut… I heard it was lonesome up there, with nothing to talk to but the cold, cold air. Hahaha…. Alright lets take a five-minute break.
Joshua starts chuckling to himself as the camera zooms out. We are in a small room in the back of The New Horizons Fitness center, it is lowly lit by a single Chinese Paper Lantern. Rapture is in the forefront barely covering himself with an open front elk-fur coat, nothing else. Behind him, followers of The New Dawn, wearing their New Horizons polo shirts & work-out shorts. They are all sitting cross-legged on the floor, forming a “V” with Rapture in the front. They all heave a sigh of release, Rapture stretches his arms out wide and his back muscles pop.
Rapture: Ah Yoga, to become one with Divinity. But I think I have been MIS-IN-TER-PRE-TED. I have never claimed to be Devine, I only happen to have knowledge no-one else possesses. I am being heard, but no-one seems to be listening to the right WORDSsss…
These people who I have surrounded myself with are not mindless sheep, no. They have been listening to the right songs, they have seen The Light for themselves.
They CHOOSE to follow, just as I choose to follow my Lord. Yes, they call me Leader, but they also call me brother. Nobody else wants to step into my shoes, and feel my burden. The weight I carry, when I put another man’ soul on the scales and deem it worthy or not. I am the Martyr of this story, I know the pain is coming. I know it will come swift, but I am ready.
They say I have spiders in my head, but they haven’t seen the truth of the world. Am I that off kilter, really? I mean Masakre, Petrov and Moonwater? The freaks are running rampant in NAPW and I’m the only one who seems to be able to hold down sturdy employment outside of Professional Wrestling.
I keep my Faith in my heart and follow it relentlessly, because this is not just another bumper sticker, this is a Movement. The New Dawn is an experience, it flows through us like electric impulses flow through our own bodies. I’m the only one with foresight, I know how this all plays out. It’s inevitable.
Rapture’s eyes roll to the back of his head
Rapture: And we are living in dark days…
His eyes flutter, and he’s back to grinning.
Rapture: But I can help you all, if you let me…. Now close your eyes… Breathe in through your nose and exhale from the deepest part of your lungs. Make every breath count, count every breath and drift from out of your body. Let The Light guide.
Rapture closes his eyes and starts meditating, the rest of The New Dawn follow suit.
Rapture: Float over your body, and move further up, up into the sky. Float onward and look South at the ever-fading Earth. You can almost see New York and New Alberta intertwine, the ants hustling and towards some ineffable nothing. The guidos and jersey girls dancing like marionettes in the twilight. Take yourself away from the humdrum and drift further towards Luna.
Luna, the beautiful maiden. The Grave nightmare queen. Oh to stare into the void and see a friendly face, and to look into her eyes, would make a fool of anyone. But she’s tough, and she’s feisty. The only one the people seem to care about, and here she is. Right in front of you. But I wouldn’t trust her eyes, because I’ve looked into her eyes and she’s all cold-hearted. She is the outcome of the hate and pain we’ve put into the world and her tongue MAY be daggers, yes, but her colors are black and dull. And her touch could save the world, but her kiss could burn it to the ground. She’s my Sister… fly further now.
Far now, Earth & Luna. A giant ball of gas, his name is Sol. And what is he but fire & hate? And what is he but another Mask we wear? Silent now, silent still. One day he will explode and destroy us all, but not this day. Today is Frapjous Day and he is The Jabberwocky. Snicker snack, snicker snack… fly further now.
And now you can see it: The Orion-Cygnus Arm, system upon systems flowing together like some sort of Chain. And what an interesting Chain, so full of promise, so adept and thriving. And what little barbs we have? What sharp teeth we have? So ready to struggle. Wait to you see my barbs and my teeth. And if the whole world is crashing down. Fall through space, out of mind again. Where the emptiness we leave behind on warm air rising. Lose all the shadows far away…
Joshua Rapture’s eyes flutter open again, very wide now. Looking disheveled, his grin stretches the corners of his mouth grotesquely.
Rapture: The surface of the Earth is the shore of the cosmic ocean, the water seems inviting. From where we are, at least. And looking up at the horizon, maybe I’ve been too harsh on Moonwater. I’ve been too focused on the sinners and the freaks and the sickos, that the Princes get mixed up too. I should say not that I loathe you nor I will destroy everything that you stand for. Because it’s inevitable. Instead I should speak to the King that you will one day become. Think of your subjects Moonwater, they have free will but choose chaos at every chance. They stand on the brink of war, ready to plant the Crystalwood flag in the carcasses of their enemies. Is peace not a better way? It is not hate that I preach, but goodness and Light. I aim to unite these fans of NAPW, in JOY! Not fear. And who else to lead the masses but me? Though, the weak must first be culled.
Yes, the week must be culled, the sheep must be shorn. The hoard is only as good as its weakest link, Moonwater. But oh what a glorious day will it be when the one must fall for the good of many. Battlebowl, is not my chance for a belt or a ring or money, but for Glory. Glory to The Lord in the highest. The inevitable dusk is coming, the ice melts and flowers bloom underneath. Think of me then, a watcher of the world, a witness to the Rapture. Dark times await, but I can be the Light of HIS Holy Grace. Oh, what a day!
A new, more glorious Dawn awaits! Not a sunrise, but a Galaxy rise. A morning filled with 400 billion suns, rising from the Milky Way.
An image of a Falcon appears on your television screen. It’s features sharp in contrast to the blanket of snow in the background covering what might be a farm field. The camera zooms out to reveal the Falcon perching on a barbed wire fence, it takes off. In slow motion the Falcon expands its wings, wider than the restrictions of your television screen. It’s claws expand as it dips into the white snow and rears up towards the sky again. His claws clenched now, holding a lump of brown with a tail, he soars away into the great unknown.
An abrupt cut later we are looking at Brown Calf-High Hunting Boots and Camouflaged Pants. There is a low murmur of voices in the background. A familiar voice speaks.
Man: Are we rolling?
The cameraman responds
Man: Okay pan up, quiet in the back now.
The background silences, the cameraman pulls up and nothing is decipherable except a few shapes and colors. As the cameraman adjust the focus and zooms out a little the man speaks again.
Man: I want you all to know that I have lost before, and been lost too. I’ve been knocked out and broken more bones than I would care to mention. Yet I have found my place in this world along my brothers and sisters. I have found peace in the darkness and clawed myself towards The Light.
The picture sets. In the background there are five members of The New Dawn, but they are not clothed for a day at New Horizons Fitness Center, they are all dressed (3 men & 2 women) in the standard hunting winter camouflage garb fresh off the racks of their nearest Walmart. The two women are wearing bright neon orange vests, are equipped with shotguns and eyes are grazing the field they are in, searching for prey. The men look lost and cold and focus their attention on their leader Joshua Rapture.
Joshua Rapture stand front and center, smiling at the camera. Under his right eye is a green bruise, an unfortunate reminder of a stiff Lontra Kick. He has spent a small fortune on his own hunting gear, as shown by the alarming amount of pockets on his camouflage winter parka. On his back he carries a brown compound bow and a small quiver of arrows.
Rapture: There is the silence of the oceans and the unending silence of space. There is the welcome silence of serenity and the everlasting silence of death. A cry for help is lost in the shrill noise of the world, but the faintest of whispers can resonate across a universe.
The men nod in agreement.
Rapture: That, my friends, was a quote from The Outer Limits. But I agree with the sentiment. Because, you see, there is going to be quite a lot of talking going further. Quite a lot.
THEY. They will talk about their accomplishments. They will talk of championships. They will chat themselves blue trying to intimidate little old me. They will tell me I lost to an Otter and shove it in my face. But I’m still smiling.
I’m smiling because I already know what everybody else needs to convince themselves. I know I’m going to win this Battlebowl. I’ve seen it. I first saw when I was lying on the ground of a boxing ring looking up at the lights. I saw it when Andellion Moonwater kicked me in the face!
I can see the future, I want the NAPW crowd to know that. I want them to know that one day they will be cheering my name when I win their coveted Championship. I want them to know that I have come to save them, because I already have. And all I have to do is follow the path that The Lord has set in front of me.
Suddenly, like a snap of a twig, Joshua Rapture starts screaming at the camera.
Rapture: You want to know WHY I attacked Moonwater? Too bad! But Moonwater, my dear sweet Prince. You just looked into the eyes of the abyss, and THEY are all staring at YOU. These people have chosen you as their hero, they’ve chosen you as their KING, but guess what? THEY’RE WRONG! By the time I’m done with you, you’ll be an attraction on the side of the road, just another piece of roadkill for them to gawk at. And the next time you see me Moonwater it won’t be your body that I break, it will be your spirit and you can tell Bill Hewson that too!
A stiff breeze comes from the West but Joshua Rapture is literally steaming, his face flush red and teeth gritting. One of the men puts his hands on Joshua’s shoulder. This seems to break Joshua’s trance and he slowly composes himself. His raises a finger as if he’s remembered something important.
Rapture: Oh, is this the part where I go down a list of my opponents and insult each one? No, you see I plan to do something different. Right now I’d like to tell you about the First Nations of this great land. They used to hunt in this very field, but not for sport or to keep wildlife numbers down no. They hunted to survive, and they would use every piece of their kill. I’m on a different hunt, but we share a similar spirit. Before they killed these majestic animals, they would thank the Gods. A type of sacrifice that has been going on for ages. We kill and fight not for glory or riches, we fight for destiny, we kill or else we starve.
Joshua takes out an arrow and remove the bow from his back, he gives the bow to one of the men and shows the camera the arrow.
Rapture: This arrow is called a Falcon. Named for the thin, tapered fletchings that give it a higher speed and accuracy. In wrestling, a Falcon Arrow is a sitout suplex slam. But I’m sure all of you knew that, are capable of using Google and know possibly the difference between a Bow and Arrow submission hold and a Falcon Arrow. But I guess that’s neither here nor there.
Somebody shushes Joshua, he turns to look. One of the women is cocking her shotgun, pointing with her stance to her left. One of the man jumps excitedly, another man calms him down before he can make any noise. The third man give Joshua Rapture back his bow and Joshua quickly loads it. The cameraman whips to the right, at a line of trees you can see movement in them. The camera zooms in a bit and you can see more of a pack of Antlerless Elk. In a whisper, Joshua speaks.
Rapture: I do this in the name of The New Dawn.
He releases the arrow, and with a picture of an elk unknown of his own fate… We fade. We fade to brown, actually. Brown like the feather of a Falcon. The camera zooms out to the head and upper breast of a Falcon. In it’s mouth hangs a tendon, a stark deep red in contrast with the beautiful brown bird and the bright white miasma of snow. The voice of Joshua Rapture speaks over the image of the Falcon.
Joshua Rapture: There is no sound, no voice, no cry in all the world that can be heard… until someone listens. Goodnight.
No fade, just cut. The screen white, these word in small print at the bottom.
[We find ourselves in the middle of a bustling gym. There a men on weight racks, women on stair masters, and constant clanging of generic pop-rock on the speakers. In the center of all this is a man with his hand folded neatly together, he is wearing track pants and a black polo shirt shirt that says “New Horizons Fitness Center” and although there is no name-tag claiming so, you know that this is the Owner & Operator: Joshua Rapture. Next to him is a small table with and empty glass jug and several small glasses.]
Rapture: Hello again, my friends. My name is Joshua Rapture. I’m sure that name is making its round on the message boards right now, however I feel like none of you faithful watchers truly KNOW me. So I’ve taken time out of my schedule for you to see my Fitness Center.
[Camera zooms out to show the entirety of the gym, a small check-in desk along the front-left side spanning multiple rows of treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, weight racks, benches and finally a boxing ring on the right side against the back wall a few photographs of Joshua Rapture’s boxing achievements. The camera zooms back to Mr. Rapture]
Rapture: It’s nice, isn’t it? It’s amazing how a man who can go from obscurity growing up in Texas can become greater than himself. I’ve spent my life in boxing rings making my way, my own way, obtaining championships and accolades that some men can only dream of. And it’s all mine.
[Two women walk into the frame, one in a black polo shirt similar to the one Joshua is wearing. She whispers something in Joshua’s ear, motioning to the other woman. Joshua smiles to the other women and offers his his hand to her, she shakes it hesitantly.]
Rapture: Welcome to New Horizons, restrooms are to the left and we have a great deal on our new Yoga class, all experience levels welcome!
[The women returns a small smile and her trainer motions her away. Joshua wipes his hand on his pants.]
Rapture: Now then, are you wondering why I have this table in the middle of my gym? Listen closely, I’m about to tell you.
[Joshua picks up the the empty glass jug and holds it up to the camera, he mimic pouring liquid into one the glasses and places the jug back on the table, holding the glass now.]
Rapture: This.. [he sniffs the glass]… is the most delicious brandy you have ever tasted. Or maybe it’s Orange Juice, or molasses. It’s infinite possibilities, it is imaginary sustenance. It is a secret chapter of a hidden book that nobody reads. You see this gym? [motions all around him] IT’S REAL. It’s a solid foundation, and years of hard work to keep it from becoming another COSTCO. It is a future that only I have the key to. The time for play is over, the time for fantasy is gone. And in my hands I hold the chalice that only the true monarch of Crystalwood can claim. In the chalice is the tears of woodland creatures when I tore down their forests and wiped my —
[Rapture notices a crowd forming in the gym, he hands his glass to a trainer nearby him and starts “pouring” from the jug into the rest of the glasses. He and the trainers of New Horizons gym start handing them out and quietly conversing with themselves. No eyes have left Joshua Rapture and no mouth have yet met the glass. Rapture take the last glass pouring the last of nothing into it. He takes a large whiff from the glass.]
Rapture: It’s sweet, no? A goosepimple on a forearm. Trust me. Know me. Listen. Learn. All I have is truth. All I know is competition. And my Faith will guide me, leading the march of The New Dawn. Empires fall, and Moons Wane. That which is left… is ants. CHEERS
[Joshua Rapture leads the drink, the Personal Trainers following him and members of the gym following them almost trance-like. Joy & Revelry erupts the camera moves up, up, UP. A Sun: Painted on the roof of New Horizons Fitness Center.FADE….]