Only the Good – Fan Written Epilogue

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by misterjohnsparks, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. misterjohnsparks

    misterjohnsparks Second Technician

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    Hey there, I used to be registered ages ago but just re-registered when I heard about the news of Series X.

    Anyway, I couldn't see anywhere else to submit this or even if anyone has written something similar before, and genuinely don't have the time at the mo for a more in depth search. Some time ago, just after I saw Back to Earth, a friend and I knocked together (in a couple of hours total, spread over a week,) this short epilogue that would bridge the gap between VIII and BTE purely for our own amusement. I saw on the Series X thread that a number of posters were speculating on whether an canonical epilogue/explanation/bridge will be provided by the series writers.

    I've just quickly run through it with a spell check and will post it after this. We're not after any praise or recognition here and – it's not for me to tell you how good or bad it is – I don't know if it's good, average, bad or terrible – but if one person finds it moderately entertaining then it was worth posting.

    So, it's rushed, but here is mine and my pal's take on this missing segment of story for anyone who cares...
     
  2. misterjohnsparks

    misterjohnsparks Second Technician

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    Only The Good

    Epilogue – By Rucka J.D and Johnny Sparks

    Arnold Rimmer dashed through the burning corridors of the doomed mining ship, Red Dwarf, flapping his arms wildly in front of his face to prevent hot embers and ash from blinding him. He stopped, exhausted, bathed in the crimson hue of The Dwarf's emergency lighting. For the second time in this inconvenient turn of events, he was on the brink of death.
    “Intruder alert, intruder alert. Not that it really matters now, but there's an intruder alert,” blared Holly, very suddenly, from the ship's speaker system.
    In Rimmer's desperately sick mind, Death himself, who now had him by the throat, suddenly let go at Holly's looped announcement. Rimmer stood with beads of sweat speckling his red face. He gazed with desperate hope, as if witnessing a miracle, at the wall monitors that displayed, verbatim, Holly's words.
    “Someone's here! That means there's still a way,” he rasped.
    More running, though this time he knew where he was going; to the docking bay. The sprinkler systems were now simply producing hot steam, making Rimmer's skin burn when he sped up to a sprint. Ceilings were sagging and floors gave way as the virus ate away at the huge ship's infrastructure. It was then that the intruder alert siren ceased (though Rimmer's mad dash did not,) which meant either the intruder had popped in, saw what was going on and left, or the virus had dissolved the intruder detection system away into space.
    Upon reaching the docking bay, he discovered that, indeed, it was irritatingly intruder-less. Among the flames and ship-quakes, Rimmer screamed “BASTARD!”
    Then, from the direction of the open docking bay doors, his miracle intruder was manifest in the form of a sleek, red, one man spaceship cruising in from the vacuum. It was landed expertly regardless of the ensuing mayhem. The cockpit canopy slid back and suave figure emerged, swaggering towards Rimmer with his hand outstretched confidently in greeting. The golden-mained man grasped Rimmer's sweaty palm in a firm hand shake.
    Before the dashing visitor could speak Rimmer screwed up his face and chirped, “Who the hell are you?!”
    The man looked up on him with a sympathy no one bar Dave Lister has ever felt towards Arnold Rimmer. He pointed with a leather-gloved finger to his handsome face, “Look at this old mug. I'm a version of you, Arn. I'm commander in the Space Core and I travel from dimension to dimension. I've come to save you!”
    With a deafening roar of twisted metal, the traffic control station, suspended some fifty-feet up one of the docking bay walls, fell away and thundered into the ground flinging girders and glass in every direction. The two Rimmers, Ace and Arn, turned back to each other.
    Arn screwed his face again studying Ace and asked, “You're me? Why are you dressed like...” he looked up and down scrutinizing Ace's uniform with derision, “...a *****?”
    “There really isn't time, big man. We could die in writhing agony any minute. Either on fire or by having your blood boil in the vacuum of space. I can take that. Can you? So listen, I need to ask where Davey-boy is. Is he alive? Is he on board?”
    “He should be safe. He's in a mirror universe, where Red Dwarf isn't liquefying as fast as, presently, the contents of my bowels are.”
    They turned to look as a large section of the deck gave way with a harrowing groan. Hot wind blew fiercely through the docking bay as the atmosphere rushed out through widening hull breaches speckling the red, metallic surface of the vast mining ship.
    Ace had to shout to raise his voice above the destruction, “Damn! We need to stop this virus now, then get Dave back. I've learned things, Arn, mind-bending things about the very nature of existence. Everyone belongs in their own universe and...”
    “And how is this stopping me from dying?” Interrupted Arnold Rimmer.
    Suddenly the shock-waves from an explosion elsewhere on Red Dwarf rattled their teeth and bones. The emergency claxons and alarms died feebly and Ace looked lost in sadness. He quickly got a grip and yelled, “Nadgers! It's too late! Structural integrity is gone, the Big Red fella is going to blow any second! Arn, take my ship. Save yourself!”
    Ace Rimmer pointed to his ship that was now perilously close to columns of fire surging upwards from the deck, and held out a set of keys. Arnold Rimmer looked at Ace with a mixture of confusion, grief and admiration. These emotions were then replaced by a serendipitous grin.
    He snatched the keys and said “Don't mind if I do!”
    Ace grabbed Arnold by the arm, “Arn, one thing before you go; be the man we know we can be.”
    Arnold Rimmer thought about this as if settling some inner conflict. “I can't let a version of me like you die for a version of me like me,” he said.
    Ace Rimmer pointed a blaster at Arnold, “With that kind of attitude you're already off to a far better start than the one I had.”
    They exchanged a respectful nod.
    “Now go!” hissed Ace.
    Arnold Rimmer climbed into Ace's ship and looked around the burning deck for one last time. The cockpit canopy closed slowly. Sealed inside and buckled into the pilot's seat he found a blonde wig. He sniffed the hair-piece, shrugged his shoulders and fitted the wig over his own scouring pad-like curls. He gripped the joystick and the little red ship exited the big red ship.
    Ace Rimmer, who we shall now refer to as Arnold J. Rimmer, stood there and trying to get his bearings before removing his wig and tossing it aside. A hologrammatic 'H' materialized on his forehead. From his jacket he took out a test-tube and poured its contents straight onto the deck at his feet. An explosion then forced him to duck down to the deck, showering him with embers and detritus as he crouched covering his head with his arms. He'd cut this closer than he'd ever intended. And he feared that even with the cure to the virus that was consuming Red Dwarf, the damage was now so cataclysmic, it would be totally irreversible... And he would die.

    In the mirror universe...

    Lister, The Cat, Kryten and Kochanski were stood in the captain's quarters of Red Dwarf. Everyone but The Cat stared solemnly into the mirror that was formerly the gateway between two realities; the one they were safe in, and the one Rimmer was about to die in. The Cat, for all his sincere intentions, would not shut up; rattling on about their close escape and pacing back and forth.
    Then Rimmer emerged triumphantly from the mirror to everyone's relief and surprise.
    “Yeoooww! He did it!” screamed the Cat before glaring at him suspiciously, “ Somehow... And he's a hologram!” He added with an amused grin; “Did you die again, Goalpost-head?”
    “Our Dwarf – did you save it?” asked Lister.
    “I did indeed, Listy.”
    “Get in!” Exclaimed Lister.
    Kryten was curious and asked; “Might I ask why you are wearing Mister Ace Rimmer's jacket?”
    “And I don't think you got around to explaining the hologrammatic 'H' on your forehead,” added Kochanski.
    Rimmer rolled his eyes as if they were all silly; silly for having no knowledge of events that had transpired in at least one other dimension. “It's me; Old Bonehead; Goalpost-head. You know, Smeg-Head! It's me, Rimmer!”
    Lister stepped up beside him and said “We've got a bit of explaining to do...”

    Later... Back in their own universe...

    “So it was Ace that originally died on Starbug and our Rimmer was next in line as his replacement.” Lister took a swig of beer. Explaining things made him thirsty.
    “And I simply wasn't up to the job,” concluded Rimmer.
    Lister looked slightly guilty and said; “I don't know why I never told you the truth. I suppose I never had the chance.”
    “In three years?!” snorted the Cat, “So what's happened to the Rimmer with blood and organs that the Mammobots resurrected?”
    Rimmer shrugged, “Went off to become Ace, I think. I arrived on Red Dwarf as it was on the brink of destruction. And left again immediately out of sheer terror. But I had seen similar events happen in other universes on my travels, so I travelled to a universe where I could get the cure to the virus. When I returned with the cure, among the fire and mayhem, there was another me in the docking bay; the final part of the Dwarf to retain its life support. Thinking he was about to die if he didn't, I offered him the chance to become Ace.”
    Lister chipped in loudly, as if he was asking something profound; “Hang on a minute, I wanna ask something here. When we met Ace before; he told us that he could never return to his home universe due to there being an infinite number of universes; and by the laws of quantum mechanics your dimension-jumping ship could only dimension-jump between these infinite universes at random. So how come you not only piloted your way to a universe where you knew there'd be a cure for the virus, but you then returned to the universe you were born in? Twice? Within a few minutes?”
    Rimmer was clearly proud as he explained, “I wanted to come back ages ago. So all I could do was jump from universe to universe over and over again until I found an Ace Rimmer whose ship could navigate the multiverse at will; a ship with the technology to choose a particular reality and make a bee-line for it. Eventually, and to my surprise, I found an Ace Rimmer with exactly that kind of ship; he had a sense of adventure and I didn't, so we swapped ships! I'm brilliant,” he added with a smug little grin.

    Red Dwarf ship status: 100% functional. Life support and supplies sufficient to sustain current crew compliment for several millennia.

    Crew: 5 remaining - Arnold Rimmer, Dave Lister, Christine Kochanski, The Mechanoid Kryten and a male Felis-Sepian. All other JMC crew members evacuated into deep space - Chance of retrieval: Slim, but there may still be JMC survivors.

    Auxiliary ship complement: 0 - JMC Crew used all vessels and lifeboats to flee Red Dwarf.

    Additional: Ship's prison polpulation remain onboard and are currently isolated on Deck 13. Extreme caution advised...

    To be continued but never concluded...
     
  3. Andrew

    Andrew Executive Officer

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    Post edited for bad language. Please refrain for using swear-words inappropriate to the show and this forum. Thanks.
     
  4. peas_and_korn

    peas_and_korn First Technician

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    The way the cure worked after so much damage was done felt a bit too much like a deux ex machina... but other than that, well written.
     
  5. misterjohnsparks

    misterjohnsparks Second Technician

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    I agree, that bit was a tad lazy, but cheers all the same!
     
  6. hypered001

    hypered001 Skutter

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    I don't know if you've seen this, but I had already posted a rough concept of the 'missing' bits of RD:

    There are simple explanations for certain things that may seem to break continuity, let me exlain:- during series III Kryten learns to lie, but in Series IV he has do it all over again and suddenly Lister has dated Kochanski in the past, this is because when Lister saw his future self in 'Timeslides' he made himself a better future, altering current events, just as Rimmer did when he came to life temporarily. This in turn erased the five-years-hence future of 'Stasis Leak' and Lister's previous appendictomy.

    Fast forward to the gap between series V and VI - 'Prelude to Nanarchy' covers this nicely but it's also likely that Cat's joy squid was left in the deep sleep pods at the beginning of 'Psirens' and the Red Dwarf/Nano size change incident in 'Back in the Red' accounts for it suddenly being huge - lying dormant in the water tanks during series VIII. With 'Only the good...' it's possible the deleted ending with the party (see the dvd) may have some relevance, ie: 1) Lister, Kryten, Kochanski and the Cat go through the mirror. 2) Rimmer returns, gets hit with the can (as shown) and imagines the grim reaper/ dies (again). 3) L,K,K and C return with the right formula in Kryten's memory (his mech memory would counter the mirror effect).

    4) anti-virus used and fixes ship. 5) Rest of crew, having already evacuated, starve/ suffocate in their escape vessels. 6) Kryten brings Rimmer(2) back as hologram but updates him with hard light and Rimmer(1) memories (any modern memory stick/card can be copied and Kryten would likely have stored the hardlight data himself) and the rest as they say is history - Kochanski does a runner and Lister overloads Holly with an overflowing bathtub.
     
  7. misterjohnsparks

    misterjohnsparks Second Technician

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    @Dave Porter
    Personally I'm not too pernickety so I've never been overly concerned with reconciling continuity in my mind (which is freaky considering I'm a dirty big Star Trek fan,) but I really like most of your ideas. Except perhaps the bringing in of another *new* Rimmer. I know that doesn't really matter because Rimmer is always Rimmer but, because of his long history with the crew and all they had been through together, I always fancied that the *original* Holo-Rimmer who departed in Stoke Me a Clipper would return.

    Anyway, I think a gap in a story is, more than anything, an excuse for an adventure. Also, this bit of fan fiction is more than open for modification/extension/elaboration by anyone. I love reading others ideas and theories on what happened in this time period.The story also ends with Red Dwarf VIII's prison population still sealed away on Deck 13. That's an idea for another intermediate chapter, if any imaginative folk are ever inclined to have a stab writing it!
     
  8. MichaelJRimmer

    MichaelJRimmer Second Technician

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    That was quite realistic for Red Dwarf. I mean I like it seems too Series VII though, (rushed).
     
  9. AmandaKnox

    AmandaKnox Third Technician

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    Not bad, well written story there. ;-)

    I'm trying to work out theories to bridge the series up;

    Although Rimmer got away from death that time, I don't think he got very far, I reckon he was killed in the incineration of the ship.
    The end of the episode states that the rest of the crew had crossed over to the other dimension, whichever dimension that would be as they didn't pass Rimmer as he was coming out of the parallel dimension.
    They must have done something with the settings on that device before it was destroyed to get them to the closest resembling universe to their own that they could get to, having to be one where the ship is fine, but the crew are all dead. This would be so that they could have Red Dwarf to themselves again and bring back Rimmer as a hologram.
    Hence B2E where the ship is fine, they have it all to themselves and Rimmer is a hologram again...
    Add up? :lol:
     

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