The scene opens on space. The endless expanse. A vast ocean of darkness, punctuated by countless pinpricks of light. Trillions of billions of miles of silence, stretching out farther than the mind can comprehend. There can be nothing but silence in the vacuum.

The silence is interrupted, surprisingly enough, by the thrumming sound of engines as a craft streaks by, smoke puffing from what is presumably one of said engines. The spacecraft twirls through the inky darkness, leaving a trail of smoke in its wake. The sharp sound of energy sizzles through the black, and lances of light erupt from the front of the trailing craft towards the smoking one. One even manages to make contact, connecting to the ship in front with a thundering rattle.

Inside the smoking craft, a pilot, their major physical details obscured by a flight helmet and jumpsuit, glances over their shoulder in response to the laser hit, a hissing curse eliciting from their lips, muffled as it is by the helmet. They pull on the flight-stick, hard, and the scene pans back out to a wide view as the pursued ship lifts itself, nose pointing in a direction that can only nominally be referred to as ‘up’ with no physically point of reference. It gains some vertical space, relative to the pursuing ship, which cannot slow down in time and blows past its quarry. Some buttons pressed, some levers flipped, and small jets along the bottom of the craft’s nose flare up, spinning it around in the vacuum until it was upside down, but now facing its former pursuer’s backside instead.

The engines roar as the ship takes flight again, screaming after the vessel that it once fled. The scene shifts back to the cockpit, a close-up profile on the pilot’s helmeted face, revealing the lower half of a white face with black-lined lips. The lips pull up at one corner into a smirk. The view smash-cuts to a pair of hands on a flight stick; fingers pressing down on a button upon it. Lasers erupt from the front of this pilot’s craft, spearing forward and into the engines of the other vehicle.

A similar smoke plume erupts from the aft of the now-fleeing ship and it immediately dips into evasive maneuvers. In the openness that is outer space, there are no impediments to stop you from trying any dodge attempt that you can imagine. Unfortunately, that same freedom makes it so that a dedicated pursuer can follow those attempts with relative ease. The unknown craft continues to get pelted with lasers from the grinning pilot’s ship.

In what appears a last-ditch effort, the battered craft speeds up, as if trying to escape the battlefield altogether. We cut back to the pilot again, whose smirk has grown into a full-fledged toothy smile. A newfound confidence seems to fill them as they press forward, matching speed and following the craft as it begins to turn a long arc through the black.

Suddenly, the pursued craft cuts its velocity, retro-rockets firing off the nose to threaten the craft into a dead stop. As it does so, the vessel turns hard into its previously lazy arc, and burns all thrusters once more, now churning forward at an angle that will cut dangerously into its tailing craft’s own path. Another cut to the pilot shows them recoiling in their seat, obviously shocked even with features obscured. Back out in space, we see the nose-rockets fire in specified directions, shoving the craft just out of the way of the suicide run. The undersides of both vessels scrape against each other, causing a rumble that nearly jostles the pilot of their seat.

With the more damaged craft now behind them, the pilot continues their escaping turn, burning the front thrusters to their maximum and spinning the ship into a turn that puts its opponent directly in view of the lasers. The pilot purses their lips, and presses the trigger again.

This time, the lances find final purchase. The craft before them begins to lose its pathway, wobbling unsteadily in space before coming apart at the seams.

We cut back to the pilot, floating in their craft in now-empty space. Their mouth hangs open, releasing a few panting breaths of adrenaline. Just as they are about to put the ship back into forward thrust, their thoughts are interrupted by a loud, terrifying screech that reverberates through space. Quickly, the thrusters fire into action, turning the ship towards the source of the screech. As it does, however, it’s rocked by the impact of a huge creature slamming into it.

The creature’s talons find purchase on the ship’s cockpit, digging into the glass, as threatening cracks begin to spider across the canopy. It peers down into the cockpit, staring down its beak with its beady, in-set eyes before releasing another primal screech.

The Pteranodon-

“Now alright, lass, that’s a mighty fine tale ye’ve spun here, but dinosaurs? Seriously?

The image freezes, hanging in time as a man’s voice speaks in an unmistakably Irish brogue. The responding voice, feminine in origin, carries a less easily recognizable accent – somewhere between Asian and Native American, softened by years of intentional repression.

“Hey mister, do you wanna know how I got here or not?”

“Well, it’s my job, but-“

“Okay, then why don’t ya sit back and let me explain it to ya then? So there I was, pterodactyl on the cockpit-“

The scene once again shifts into motion as the pteranodon takes off from the cockpit, flapping its massive wings and taking to space. The pilot, now given voice, lets out a snort of frustration.

“Way to bust up my view, birdie!”

She slumps back in her seat, both hands curling into fists save for two middle fingers, and she thrusts a double deuce towards the canopy. Though remaining intact, the glass-like surface had been latticed with cracks, originating from each of the beast’s points of attempted entry. In response, the monster swoops at the ship again, this time passing just overhead, the force of its speed causing the entire vessel to shake in reaction. The pilot bares her teeth before pushing a consternated hiss through them and reaching to the flight stick again, regaining control of her ship.

“Alright, you leathery sack of space crap, let’s see how much you like eating laser!

Her head jerks from side to side, looking for the sensors that will tell her where the Pteranodon might be approaching from. Too late, a proximity sensor sounds off, followed by a heavy crashing noise and alarm klaxons of multiple varieties. The pilot snarls audibly, jerking the craft into position.

“If you hit me from there, then now you’re probably about… here!

She squeezes the triggers, releasing blasts of energy in the dinosaur’s direction. We zoom out to a wide angle, witnessing most of the blindly-fired lasers going astray, but two salvos connect, blasting into the beast’s body and causing it screech again, this time in pain and rage.

Back in the cockpit, the pilot leans forward, trying to determine which particular sections of canopy accurately depict the position of the creature.

We, however, see the pterosaur, as it redoubles both its scream and its attack, charging the vessel head-on at a blistering pace.

In the cockpit, the pilot slams her fists down into the sides of the seat.

“FUCK it!”

One fist reaches down towards the craft’s floor, and the other thrusts upward, knuckles impacting the glass surface and causing it to spiderweb even further. She grits her teeth, striking the glass twice, three times even. Between each strike, we see the other hand, grabbling blindly against the floor, looking for something via touch alone. After the third strike, she finds what she’s looking for, and her hand grips the chain firmly, wrapping it around her fist with a practiced twirl.

She throws her entire body into the punch, and the chain shatters the glass. The glass is launched outwards, and we watch from outside as a small, fist-sized column of shards erupts from the canopy. Following on its heels, almost like the ripples of a waterdrop, the entire rest of the canopy breaks into shards and seems to expand, retaining its same general shape even as the distance between pieces increases.

A person-shaped section of the shards begin to shift as the pilot pushes herself from the seat, floating through the glass remnants to spy the dino once more.

The pterodactyl eyes her in kind, talons rearing forward to rend her asunder. The pilot, chain in hand, twirls the iron links above her head, and throws it at the behemoth. The chain arcs forward, wrapping around the beast’s throat and cutting off its high-pitched scream.

On the other end of the chain, the once-pilot begins to wrap herself about the waist, tucking the last links under the first couple loops to secure it. Once she has things affixed to her liking, one hand reaches out, as far up the chain as she can manage, and she ascends.

We see a close-up of the impersonal, mirrored flight helmet, teeth gritted underneath in determination. We switch to a POV shot, visualizing the scarred and damaged underbelly of the monster, taking in the lasers’ handiwork. Another wide shot shows up the pilot pulling herself up towards the twin burns. Next, a close-up of the dinosaur’s face, trying to choke out shrieks as it loses… whatever it’s breathing out here. When we cut back to the pilot, she has reached the belly of the beast.

“How did you breathe?”

“Come again?”

The scene freezes again.

“In space. How’d you breathe?”

“I didn’t. You can’t breathe in space, dumbass.”


“Shut up Jeff, I want to hear where this is going.”

“THANK you!”

The scene restarts, and the pilot begins to spin, pulling the chain up around herself, wrapping it many times until its lengths covers her entire body, save for her hands. These, she rips into the dinosaur’s blasted stomach, her fingers digging in deep, her hands wrapping tightly around the leathery flesh of the monster she battled.

With all the chain’s slack now wrapped around the pilot, the dinosaur found itself being pulled by the neck, careening into an arc as it flew, losing energy rapidly. Thankfully, it seemed to be just as rapidly approaching a large blue dot in the horizon.

“And that, my good men, is how I got here, as you see.”

The scene transitions as if the camera is spinning towards a new point of focus, except now, we’re in a small office building, viewing a young woman that appears to be the owner of the voice. She is clad in what appears to be facepaint, a white face with blacked areas around her eyes and matching black lipstick. Instead of a pilot’s jumpsuit and helmet, however, she is wearing a black bomber jacket with a green crop top and tight red pants, along with a smattering of accessories, such as a choker necklace, fingerless gloves, and multiple earrings in each ear. She grins a toothy grin, and the scene pans across the table to reveal two men in what appears to be official uniforms, bearing white captain’s hats that both read “CUSTOMS.” One’s nametag reads “J. Doyle” and the other “C. Byrne”. Doyle looks to Byrne with a deep frown.

DOYLE: So we’re… we’re not lettin’ her in then, right?

Byrne returns the frown with an open-mouthed look of hesitant confusion. The camera zooms over his shoulder, panning forward and out the window to sweep across the location. The view reveals a channel, with cranes, warehouses, and industry on one side of the channel, and hotels and other buildings of luxury across the way. In the blue sky above, words pop onto view –

Belfast, ireland

We snap back to the customs office, right back to the view of the confused, open-mouthed Byrne, who still has yet to come to a conclusion.

DOYLE: C’mon Conor, how long ye’ve been at this job now? Ten-odd years?

BYRNE: Thirteen in January, yeh.

DOYLE: And how many times y’ever let a story like this go through?

BYRNE: Can’t say as though there’s been one, Jeff.

DOYLE: So we’re… not lettin’ her in then?

During this exchange, the young woman has leaned forward, propping her elbows up onto the table and her head onto her elbows. She seems to be completely enrapt by the conversation before her, but finally decides to speak up at this moment.

“Fellas, fellas! What seems to be the problem, anyway?”

Her grin beams even wider and brighter, as the screen freezes again, this time dropping new text just below her smiling face, between both elbows:


The two men stare at her, blinking in disbelief.

DOYLE: Ma’am, don’t misunderstand, I’m happy to see how relaxed you are with all of this, it’s just that…

Doyle seems to stumble over his words, and Byrne picks up the slack.

BYRNE: Well ma’am, with a story like that, it’s a right wonder we don’t just phone up the police.

DOYLE: You’re sure you don’t have any identification? Nothing at all?

CC: Uhhhh, how could I? Remember??

Chelsey rolls her eyes, lifting her head from one of her hands and using it to point towards the sky, twirling around as if to imply ‘because I was just up there.’

DOYLE: Ma’am, I’m quite sorry, but surely you don’t expect us to believe that you got here. To Northern Ireland. Because you were… riding a space dinosaur?

BYRNE: Even if we could buy that, love, there’s no way you’d have managed re-entry unscathed!

Chelsey shakes her head suddenly, very insistent.

CC: Oh no, no no! I wasn’t unscathed! Remember? My hands!

She holds them up, palms open, towards the customs officers. Their brows furrow in confusion as they regard the hands before them.

CC: They were the only things exposed so they burned up in the atmosphere. That’s why I got these sweet robot hands! See?

Chelsey slowly moves her hands forward, wiggling her fingers to show them to the two men. They also lean forward, trying to ascertain what about the hands gave them away as ‘robot hands.’ As they do, Chelsey shoots forward, both hands stretching out and gripping each man by the back of their head, a twin fist-full of short-cropped hair. Before they can react, she brings both men’s heads together, crashing their craniums into each other once, and then another time for good measure. On the second strike, the scene immediately cuts to darkness.

CC: I think that went well!

The scene fades back in, this time to Chelsey walking away from the harbor. The smile on her face is confident, proud even, and her stride is sure. She’s got places to go and no time to waste.

“I wonder how they think it went, though.”

Chelsey nearly jumps at the sudden voice, looking around for the source of it. Not finding it immediately, she instead looks back in the general direction of the office she previously sat at. The camera follows her gaze, panning backward, slowly at first but then quickly picking up the pace until it centers on the two men, still mostly unconscious, inside the customs office. Byrne has been placed in Doyle’s lap, straddling him, and both men are wrapped with a thick length of chain, keeping them bound to their awkward position.

It is made all the more precarious by the grenade.

Through judicious application of duct tape, the grenade has been wedged into Doyle’s mouth, teeth pressed firmly against the striker lever The pin, meanwhile, is locked into Byrne’s mouth, poking through the duct tape that covers his mouth. Together, the situation stands such that both men are technically safe, tightly bound as they are, but any attempt at struggling might just remove the pin and/or depress the lever.

Doyle wakes up first, barely suppressing the urge to scream in time.

The scene smash cuts back to Chelsey, who shrugs and shoves a roll of duct tape into her satchel.

CC: Now who was that? Are you my conscience? Last time you talked to me it didn’t go so well. For you.

The camera rotates around her shoulder, revealing a man in rather ragged clothes, shaking his head and waving for her attention.

DECLAN: Nah, not me, love. Name’s Declan. You, ah, seem like the type I’d rather have as friend than foe.

When she sees him, Chelsey smiles even more brightly and she ushers him over to join her.

CC: That would be correct! I’m Chelsey, it’s nice to meetcha, Dec. You ain’t gonna call the cops or nothin’?

DECLAN: I think not, lass. Think I’d just as soon not end up like that lot back there. Plus I’m just not much of a cops-callin’ kinda bloke t’begin with.

Chelsey regards him with a raised eyebrow.

CC: … you uh, sure it’s not just because you’re a gross hobo guy who doesn’t own a phone?

Declan’s eyes widen and he recoils a bit, as if shocked.

DECLAN: I mean, it’s not not because of that, either. And for the record, I consider myself more of a ‘scamp’ or a ‘wayfarer’ than some kinda hobo, I’ll have you know!

CC: Wayfarer, huh?

Chelsey shrugs an acceptance.

CC: Sounds like the perfect partner to accompany me on my spiritual journey!

Declan’s brow furrows in a show of concern.

DECLAN: Your what now?

CC: Spiritual Journey!

DECLAN: To where, then?

CC: Manchester, England!

Declan frowns.

DECLAN: Far as spiritual journeys go, love, this one sounds rather shite.

Chelsey’s face puckers up in response, as if his words had left a sour taste in her mouth.

CC: Are you comin’ with or not?

There is a long moment of silence as the man seems to consider. Finally, he scratches the back of his head sheepishly before shrugging.

DECLAN: I can tag along for a ways at least. Why the hell not?

CC: Perfect! A promo sounds way more organic when you bounce it off somebody else rather than just talking to yourself like some kinda weirdo.

Declan narrows his eyes at her, trying to decide if its worth it to ask. She catches his look and just smiles at him before beginning to walk once more.

CC: So Dec, you don’t mind if I call you that right?

DECLAN: No offense love, but I get the feelin’ you’re gonna keep doin’ it even if I said I did.

Chelsey giggles, one hand going up in a shrugging motion and the other pointing towards Declan as if to say ‘you got me!’

CC: You got me! So you’re sure you don’t have a phone, right?

DECLAN: ‘fraid so, lass.

CC: And no hobo friends with phones you could get one from?

DECLAN: Not that I could get a hold of at a moment’s notice, not without a… well, I’m sure you get where I’m going with this.

There is silence, and Declan turns to face Chelsey. She’s staring at him, eagerly waiting for him to finish his sentence properly. He just sighs and shakes his head.

DECLAN: No, I don’t think that I do.

CC: Okay! Guess I just have to use this one, then.

Chelsey reaches into her pocket and pulls out an Android phone and begins to fiddle with it. Declan looks on quizzically.

DECLAN: Wait, what? Where did you- how did you- but why did you-

CC: From the customs guy, I pulled it out of his pocket after I tied ‘em up, and because you make the dumbest little faces when you’re confused, Dec! Keep up!

She giggles again, lifting an index finger to boop him on the nose. He recoils, stepping back in a mixture of fear and awkwardness, attempting to regain his composure while she works.

CC: If you were a customs agent, what would your phone password be, Dec?

DECLAN: Ahhhh, how about one-two-three-four?

CC: Nah. Tried that.

DECLAN: Shit, right. Four-three-two-one?

Chelsey stops moving for a moment, staring at Declan with her eyes wide. She takes in a deep breath and releases with a sudden gleeful energy. Her fervor renewed, she makes four quick punches on the phone and her face seems to brighten in response from the changing screen.

CC: A wizard walks among us!

Declan tilts his head at her and frowns, but his mood breaks as well, laughing despite himself at her antics. Meanwhile, Chelsey walks beside him, flipping rapidly through the phone. She pulls up a browser and begins glancing through web pages.

CC: So my opponents are… Sukeban Ichiko and Dracona? What do you know about these contenders, Declan? Prep me, coach!

DECLAN: Pardon?

CC: Gimme some pointers! Tell me about their strengths and weaknesses and fill me full of confidence so I can start talking shit!

Declan slows down, a frown beginning to creep over his face. He opens his mouth to respond, but hesitates, eventually just closing his mouth again for a moment. It’s another beat before he can even say anything.

DECLAN: …come again now?

CC: God, Dec, you’re the worst at this!

She shoves the phone in his hands. He walks and reads, perusing the IIW website with a quiet ponderance. Occasionally, he nods to himself.

DECLAN: Yes. Hmm. I see.

Chelsey, her interest piqued, glances over at the phone screen to see what it is he’s looking at. He hands her back the phone.

DECLAN: I never learned to read.

Chelsey regards him in horror, but Declan bursts out in peals of laughter. For a moment, he has to stop, doubling over to catch his breath.

DECLAN: I really- you thought I couldn’t- oh that’s rich, love!

Chelsey bites her lower lip as her face curls up into a sneer.

CC: You’re lucky you’re cute, Declan.

Declan responds with the cheekiest grin he can manage, revealing multiple missing teeth. The rest are various shades of yellow. Declan’s hair is a light brown mop on his head that almost hides the dirt its stained with, and his craggy face bears the weathered look of someone who’s spent most of his life outside. He is, by no variation of a standard definition, cute.

DECLAN: So yer a wrestlin’ lady, then?

She shrugs a shoulder.

CC: Yeah, somethin’ like that. For now.

DECLAN: And yer facin’ two other ladies?

CC: Seems that way.

DECLAN: Alright… what do ye know about ‘em?

CC: Nothing! I mean, nothing you can’t find on the website here. “Sukeban” is some sort of Japanese Pro Wrestling legacy, and Dracona’s some kind of American Pro Wrestling legacy!

DECLAN: Right, right. And what about you?

Chelsey slows a bit, looking around and then up into the sky before shrugging.

CC: I’m... not those things. Not even a little bit. But that being said!

Chelsey turns her face, angling her body to point itself in that direction at a slight angle. She holds this upper body position as she keeps walking.

CC: I don’t want either of you to think that you’re coming in with some sort of edge on me as a result. Your experience in the ring pales in comparison to the experience I’ve got just from growing up. All the strengths you think you have were cultivated in a specific set of situations: four turnbuckles, three ropes, and a square ring. Mine, on the other hand? Out in the cold. On the run. With only survival in mind. When the push comes to shove and I bring this thing past the ring and into the real, how much survival do either of you think you’ll have in mind?

As this monologue begins, we steadily view the action from directly in front of both of the travelers’ path. Chelsey looks off to the left, and Declan looks at her, furrowing his brow in confusion and at least a little bit of creeping regret. We are even treated to a close-up of Declan’s face, first one eyebrow raising, and then the other as Chelsey continues to talk to the air off to her side. As we go back to the original front-facing angle, Chelsey turns her head again, this time to face directly forward. Her upper body follows soon after.

CC: Like you, “Sukeban.”

The view, almost in reaction to her changing gaze, shifts to a focus behind the walking pair instead, taking in all of the emphatic arm gesticulations as she continues to speak.

CC: You took on the leather and chains to get away from the shadow of your family? Started saying swear words in the backyard when nobody was looking, too, I’d guess. A noble effort, but ultimately, how transparent can you get? We’re all just lost little kids looking for our parents’ approval, at least have the stones to own up to it! It’s not like it’ll matter, I’ve spent time in the East, I know how things work in your culture. And when I beat you into submission and make that pin-fall? When I embarrass you on live TV in front of your whole family on your big IIW debut?

We see the back of her head shaking in a slow, deliberate manner. Declan has begun to edge away slowly, glancing up ahead for the possibility of new paths to organically step away to and leave the ranting woman to herself.

CC: Well, then you may as well just go back home and become one of those NEETs like everyone else in Japan. And you!

Chelsey’s head snaps to the right, her finger coming up just as quickly to point menacingly at Declan. Declan jumps, eliciting the slightest squeak of surprise and fear, and quickly stops edging away, but Chelsey pays him no heed whatsoever. 

CC: Dracona?

The view shifts to over Chelsey’s shoulder, and we see Declan become increasingly less comfortable as the unending avalanche of smack-talk pours unbidden from the pale woman’s lips.

CC: I couldn’t care less who trained you, particularly any baí pí zhū yankee doodle gun-toting American shit eggs.

DECLAN: Did she say ‘shit eggs’...?

The view finally shifts to a similar angle, this time over Declan’s shoulder, as Chelsey barrels forward with what she has to say, not responding to Declan if she’s even heard him in the first place.

CC: No amount of technical expertise can match the intensity I’ll be bringing to the ring, Dracona. No amount of star studded training will compare to my need to push through you, to trample you and use you as a stair to my goals. I’m here to pick up loose ends and finish something I started, and I don’t care if they throw one, two, three or even four opponents against me at the same time, I’m going through them ALL.

As she concludes her diatribe, Chelsey smashes her fist into her palm and points it in the direction she’s facing, which means its basically leveled directly at Declan’s chest.

DECLAN: Chelsey...

Declan begins slowly, trying to ease into the question. Chelsey, for her part, snaps back to a regular walking pace almost as suddenly as she stopped, tilting her head and lifting her inner eyebrows with a dazzling, full-toothed smile.

CC: Yeah Dec??

A beat.

DECLAN: What the fuck are you talking about?

As he asks, the frame freezes one last time, with two title blocks dropping down beneath his face:


Lovable Scamp; Questionable Decision-Maker

On this frame, the scene finally fades to black.



0 - 0 - 0