The Sixth Stage of Grief: An Oral History of the Tokyo Lift Part 3

By: Spotter Pandora

In many ways, Blaseball is a game about the stories we tell each other. Today, I will be completing the story of the Expansion Era, as told by the Tokyo Lift. Welcome to the Sixth Stage.

The Sixth Stage is a death ritual of sorts. A grief ritual, more commonly. It consists of 7 words: The Sixth Stage of Grief is Deicide.

I move today to change that word to Pantheocide. You’ll soon see why.

Season 20 was hard for the Lift. The Season 19 Elections saw five roster moves, three of which were wimdying away beloved players. Halexandry Walton for the Magic’s Evelton McBlase: 4%. Jessica Telephone for the Steaks’ Kline Greenlemon: 2%. And finally, Season 11 Lift player Cudi di Batterino for the Moist Talkers’ Goobie Ballson on a whopping 1%. To have a championship, then to lose all of those… vibes were weird, to say the least. On the bright side, Kline Greenlemon gained Outdoorsy, allowing lem to heavily overperform at home. We had the second-most Grandiose stadium. It was a good Blessing for the best of the worst! Also, we got this image out of it, so….

ID: The Creation of Adam by Michelangelo, edited so that Goobie Ballson is Adam, censored by the weightlifter emoji. The Chicago Firefighters take the place of God, while muscles and orbs take the place of the cherubs.

Unfortunately Goobie Ballson immediately Feedbacked away. 

In other Earlseason news, a rare and valuable Lift vs Crabs matchup led to an iconic showing by Lift batter Gerund Pantheocide. 

On Day 13, something extraordinary happened: the call of Carcinization was resisted. 

ID: Crabs collect 10. Gerund was gripped by force. Kline was compressed by gamma.

With Grollis on the mound and Black Hole in the air, collecting 10 seemed inevitable. And truly, it happened: top of the 8th, solo homer hits it over.

But what happened next was odd. Gerund, in line to be stolen, simply said “No.” with such Force that it just… didn’t happen. 

They went on to Shame the crabs at the bottom of the 9th for even trying.

ID: gerund hitting a dinger to shame the crabs in the same game.

I guess we also had a postseason run? Wildcard, Underbracket, beat the Wings, got kicked out. 

The pattern of immediate weather continued in Season 21, with a much more permanent, much more personal event: The incineration of co-captain Gerund Pantheocide. Gerund was the latest in a trend of Lift captainship casualties, so the position was abolished by surviving, now former, co-captain Yusef Fenestrate. The Sixth Stage, as always, carried on. In their honor. 

Season 22 was uneventful, by comparison; all except for the postseason.

In certain circles, this was known as the Clown Run. First, the Free Wills-qualified Lift won the Overbracket wildcard round, then got looped in Black Hole weather by the Georgias. With Sun(Sun) in effect, this gave us a Win. With a lost game due to said loop, we only needed one Win to finish the series after game one. And win we did! At the very last second. 

Second verse, worse than the first. The Sunbeams looped us twice, then won. We eventually moved on in four games. Wild League champions and Free Wills team the Tokyo Lift then got swept out of the finals by the Breath Mints. of all teams, with no Black Hole games to rely on. To top it all off, the Mints faxed in a Shelled Cudi di Batterino, showing us a Shelled player on the mound for the first time. In the finals.

Season 22’s Elections we’re excellent for us. In season 23, we looked unstoppable (and also Terrell Bradley was there). With a world-class Rotation, including two of the top 10 pitchers by ERA (and also Terrell Bradley was there). Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be. The Worms destroyed us in the last playoffs of the era, and, due to a Faxed-in replica, down a pitcher. Unfortunately, Silvaire Semiquavier was taken by the Gachapon, and our one season of dominance was over. 

Finally, we watched the Semi-Centennial with bated breath, thinking it would be the last time Gerund Pantheocide would play. As people started getting twisted by the Vault Legends, we prayed that they wouldn’t. That they might return to us. They were alive now, after all.

They didn’t. They went to the Firefighters. Our star batter, once again alive, was from Chicago.

Thus, 24 was a rush to party before Partytime was abolished.

24 wasn’t that interesting, honestly. We headed for the Horizon almost immediately, with very little discussion.

ID: Spotters in the town hall asking for proposals other than Horizon.

It was very simple. And also we got nullified, which was cool.

Thus, wrapped up the Expansion era for the Lift. An anticlimactic ending, without much fanfare. We didn’t participate in the deicide, however— and thus, the Sixth Stage— Pantheocide— carries on.

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