My name is Simon Grayson. I'm a 17 year old (at time of writing;1998) boy who lives in London. You can contact me via E-mail this address:email@example.com For all your Red Dwarf wants on the 'net, go to this address: http://www.pavilion.co.uk/users/moose/reddwarf.html
This piece of FanFic 26th August 1998. It was designed to answer a few questions bouncing about on the Red Dwarf Mailing List at the time. You'll enjoy it a lot more if you've seen some of the episodes of Red Dwarf. If you haven't seen them all, there'll be some jokes in here that you won't get. My advice: go and watch all the episodes. If you've watched them, but forgotten them, they've been re-done (or "re-mastered") now, so you've got a good excuse to watch them again.
Legal bit: Almost everything here is copyright by the BBC. The rest of it is copyright me, Simon Grayson. You can distribute it anywhere you want, including the web, fanzines, etc. but you MUST keep all this info at thetop with it. Also, if you put it somewhere where loads of people are going to read it, I'd appreciate it if you could E-mail me to let me know.
NOTE: You have to have seen Ouroborous to enjoy this piece of FanFic. Having seen Parallel Universe is also vital
Kevin sat down in his chair in the bridge, hoping that he could do*something* to sort out the problems. It was typical of the girls to screw up when they were left alone. The moment he stepped off the bridge, they'd stop looking at the sensors and start talking, joking and eating instead of flying the ship!
As he sat down in his chair, the hollogramme appeared next to him.
"Good morning, sir," she said, "as you can probably tell, things aren't going very well. It's not my fault at all, I tried to tell the others that we'd go off course if they took their eyes off the sensors, but they wouldn't listen to me."
"What about you?" asked Kevin, "weren't you looking at the sensors yourself?"
"No, I was trying to tell them what they were doing wrong at the time" she said, "but by the time I finished doing that and sat down again, it was too late and we were being sucked into that... well, whatever it is."
For the 10th time in as many minutes, Kevin Kochanski wished he could be back in his own universe. His Deb wouldn't have let something like this happen.
For the 10th time in as many minutes, Kristine Kochanski wished she could be back in her own universe. Her Dave wouldn't have let something like this happen.
"Whatever it is" Arnold Rimmer continued, "we're being sucked into it even faster now than we were at first. I think that in about 2 minutes, we're going to be sucked into the..."
"Wibbly wobbly thing" suggested the Cat.
"Have you scanned the... wibbly wobbly thing?" asked Kevin.
"We've tried, but we can't get anything" said Arlene.
"I've tried to get a scent on it" said Dog, "It's as if there's something really, really big inside it."
"Inside what?" said Lister, walking into the cockpit.
Kryten stepped on to the cockpit behind him.
"Where have you been, Lister?" asked Rimmer.
"I've been in the A.R. Machine with Kryten" he answered, "We were taking a look at the disks we found on the SSS Nimrod."
"You've been all day" said Rimmer, "find something erotic, did you?"
"No, I was looking at this fascinating disk about the ancient Aztecs, wasn't I, Kryten".
"Lie mode engaged." said Krystal, "Yes, Ma'am, you didn't even touch the disk with "all alone in an all boys boarding school"".
"You're sick you know, Lister" said Kevin.
"Maybe I wouldn't have to be if you..."
"Don't even think about it!"
"Contact expected in 30 seconds!" said Rimmer.
"Well, let's sit down and brace our selves" said Lister, "there's not much we can do about it now.
"From the outside, it would have looked as if the ship was drifting towards the phenomenon slowly, but inside the ship, Rimmer looked at his read outs which were telling him that they were going at almost 90% of the speed of light, and accelerating! If they kept this up, they'd be seeing future echoes again soon. Fortunately, they hit the phenomenon before this happened.
"My god!" said Lister, "where are we?"
In front of Starbug, they could see a single star in the distance, and nothing else at all. Space was completely black, with no stars or galaxiesto make it look like there was something out there.
"According to the scanners" said Rimmer, "there's vindaloo ahead of us, behind us and to the sides of us. In fact the whole universe is made of vindaloo. The only sound that can be heard is a song being played by "Fat Lez", whoever he is."
"My fault" admitted Lister, "I spilled some Vindaloo in there on Friday."
"So we have no way of knowing where we are." said Kochanski, "there's not very much we can do, is there?"
The room came into focus around Lister's eyes. Where was he? He tried to stand up, but his legs felt like they were made of jelly. He sat up on the bed, and he could see some kind of robot in front of him.A word came into the back of his mind, and he struggled to get it where he could see what it was. Kryten. Yes, that was the name of whatever was in front of him.
Images flowed through Lister's head, as his memory quickly came back to him.
"What hit me?" he asked at last.
"Nothing, sir, you've been in deep sleep for the past 2 years. We've been flying towards the star we could see in the distance."
As Lister stepped into the cockpit, completing the crew of 5, even he could see that the star was still some way off.
"We're still 14 hours away" said Kochanski, seeing what he was thinking,"Kryten says he brought us out of deep sleep early for a reason. We were waiting for you to arrive for him to tell us all at the same time."
"It seems" said Kryten, "that there is some kind of ship on the other side of the star. It's very similar to Starbug, but it's slightly different."
He brought up a picture on the screen above his head.
"It looks like a *female* Sextipus Cornalius!" exclaimed Kochanski.
"A what?" asked Lister and the Cat in unison.
"Well, Starbug's design was based on an insect called Sextipus Cornalius.It was based on a male one, though, and that looks like a female one!"
"I'll try to hail them" said Rimmer. As he moved his hand towards the buttons, the computer made a noise.
"They're trying to hail us" said Kryten.
"Put them on." said Kochanski.
A blurred face appeared on the screen, saying "This is Arlene Rimmer of the... oh my god, it's you!"
16 hours later, all 10 of them were assembled on the planet, with two large monitors.
They had decided to carry on flying towards the star they had seen. Once they arrived, they had seen that there was a planet in orbit, so they chose that as a point to meet and talk.
They sat around a large table that had been taken down from Dave Lister's ship. Arnold had refused to sit next to Arlene, so Kevin and Kristine were sitting between the two of them, both glad of the chance to talk about opera to someone. The others had said that Dave and Deb shouldn't sit next to each other, so Dog was sitting between them, and Cat was sitting on the other side of Dave.
Finally, Kryten and Krystal were sitting between Cat and Arlene Rimmer. They had linked up to each other to swap information efficiently. The others had been unable to control their laughter once they had seen Kryten attach the connector lead to his groinal attachment, especially when they saw where it attached to Krystal!
On top of the tables, were the two monitors, with Holly and Hilly on them. They had both found it very funny that the other had taken over their faces, and they had disappeared a few seconds after arrival to get some privacy
. "Do you know where we are?" asked Dave Lister of the others.
"No we don't." said Dog, "We were just flying along, and we got pulled into a wibbly wobbly thing. Next thing we knew, we were here. We had a nap for awhile, and then Officer bud bloke started talking about some kind of male bug in space."
"Sirs, Ma'ams" said Kryten and Krystal in exact harmony, "we've each accessed the other's databases" Deb and Dave smirked at this comment, "and we've learnt that we were in the exact same situation, and the exact same chain of events brought us here."
"So now what?" asked Deb.
"Well, let's try to work out where we are." said Kevin, "Our scanners aren't working because Lister poured vindaloo into them, but if we use yours..."
"The same thing happened to ours" said Kristine.
All 10 of them sat in silence, until Arnold Rimmer asked "What ever happened to Lister's children, by the way?"
"They disappeared after you went back to your universe" said Arlene, "the exact same moment you disappeared, so did they. We thought that they went back with you at the time."
"We didn't see them" said Lister.
"THEY WERE DELETED TO PRESERVE THE INTEGRITY OF THE MULTIVERSE" said a loud disembodied voice
Dave looked around him, and could see that there were people missing from the table. Only he, Deb, the Rimmers and the Kochanskis were left. "Where did the others go?" he asked
"THEY HAVE BEEN REMOVED" said the voice.
The Kochanskis both started using their portable scanners at the same time.
"They aren't within 10 miles of here" said Kristine after a few seconds.
"What do you think that voice is?" asked Deb.
"Hey you!" shouted Lister, "what's the big idea?"
"YOU WERE BROUGHT HERE FOR A REASON"
"What reason?" asked Kevin.
"THE INTEGRITY OF THE MULTIVERSE IS DAMAGED. PARADOXES ARE APPEARING INMANY OF THE UNIVERSES. THIS MICROVERSE HAS BEEN CREATED TO FIX THOSEPROBLEMS. YOU HAVE BEEN BROUGHT HERE TO HELP MEND THE PROBLEMS."
"This is crazy. It'll never work!" said Rimmer.
Dave Lister was still trying to understand what he had been told. Firstly, there was no significance to the fact that he had been with Deb and the others, they had just been brought to the same "Microverse" at the same time. A microverse, he had been told, was a universe that was finite instead of infinite.
The reason he had been brought there was to help himself come into existence. He thought he had already done this once by taking the invitro tube from Kochanski and taking it back in time, but apparently this still left a paradox.
Since Kochanski had been stranded in his universe, her Dave had never been born. Unfortunately, this led to a chain of events which stopped Kochanski from entering into his universe, meaning that the problem never occurred, letting Dave be born after all.
They had learnt from the voice that their job was to make sure that Dave Lister could be born in all 4 universes: Lister's universe, Kochanski's universe and the two female universes. They had decided to split up into wo groups, each sorting out their own pair of universes.
"Of course it'll work! I'm here aren't I?" said Lister.
"So far. If this doesn't work, you might follow Cat and Kryten."
"That won't happen, it'll work!"
"What exactly are we going to do?" asked Kochanski.
"It's simple" said Lister, "we've got a time and reality machine. We have to use it to make sure that I get born in both of the universes. It's got a safety feature, so if we screw up, we can use it to put time back exactly how it was."
The 3 of them, Dave Lister, Arnold Rimmer and Kristine Kochanski, boarded the first ship they had been able to find. Starbug had disappeared, so they used a GELF ship that they had found in orbit around the planet.
They used the time machine to slip back in time to the point just before Starbug had entered the swirly thing that had brought Kochanski into their universe.
As they appeared, Starbug saw them, and started firing at them!
Kochanski rolled her eyes. How could they expect any kind of normality from a ship with Cat, Lister and Kryten on board it? Not only they didn't have her there to help her, they didn't even have Rimmer on board to even *try*to enforce any regulations!
"What the smeg are they doing? Don't they know who we are?" screamed Lister.
"How would they know who we are?" asked Rimmer, "we're in a smegging GELFship! They think we're out to get them!"
"Why aren't they trying to hail us?" asked Lister, "everyone knows you're meant to hail a ship before firing on it!"
"Everyone except for Captain Bogbot, you and your pet" said Rimmer.
"Open a hailing frequency!" said Kochanski.
Rimmer pressed a few buttons and Lister's face appeared on the screen above his head. The top of a pink dressing gown could be seen, and he had dental floss attached to his face, as he had when he had first met Kochanski.
"Rimmer? Why are you in a GELF ship? Is that you, Rimmer man?" asked Lister from above his head.
"Uh, kind of." answered Rimmer.
"We thought you were dead!" said Cat from out of view.
"It's a long story. I'm from the future." said Rimmer, "look, maybe you should speak to these two." he turned the camera to show Lister and Kochanski.
"Kriss?" Lister looked shocked as he saw Kochaski. He hurriedly put some of the dental floss behind his ears, "you're, uh, looking good. What are you doing here with... who's that? it's me!"
Rimmer pushed another button and Lister's face disappeared from the screen, "This isn't quite what was meant to happen, was it?"
"Let's use the safety mode, then" said Lister.
He fiddled with the controls of the time/reality machine, and they reapeared in orbit of the single planet of the microverse they had been in.
"How are we going to get into the past without them seeing us?" said Lister.
"Well, we could try hiding in non-space." said Kochanski, "They won't be using Starbugs large scanners. If I remember correctly, all they had was Krytens portable scanner."
Lister engaged the machine, transporting them into non-space and finding a hiding place where simple scanners wouldn't be able to find them. They managed to hook their scanners through to cameras that were hidden in the bridge in non-space which they would be walking through.
They then watched as Lister's crew walked onto the bridge, meeting the other group, including the hologrammatic Lister. They then watched as Kochanski stepped on and told Lister about her plan to have a child. Then ,all 7 of them left the bridge and stepped onto the Starbug in Lister' s universe.
"That's not how you described it happening." said Rimmer to Lister, "You said something about an attack on the bridge.
"Smeg. The GELFs did attack us, and the others never came aboard our ship!" said Lister, "why didn't they do it this time?"
The 3 of them sat in silence for a while, until Kochanski said "We don't actually know that it *was* the GELFs who attacked us."
"Yes we do" said Lister, "Kryten scanned their ship, and said that it was aGELF ship!"
"And what are we in?"
Lister fiddled with the controls of the machine to take them back in time again. They went back to their same hiding place, but made contact with something.
"Smeg. We're being hailed" said Lister.
"It's our past selves from a few minutes ago." said Kochanski, "we've changed the past *again*."
Lister pressed the panic button, sending them back to the Microverse again, and from here, sent them back to where they had been earlier. This time, he opened fire on the bridge, shattering it and sending all 7 people on it falling downwards.
"Smeg" he said as he sent them back in time yet again.
This time, he fired with the right amount of power, sending Kochanski into Lister's universe, but the others back into they’re own one.
"It's worked!" said Lister.
"Now what?" asked Rimmer, "we've just put time back the way it was. If that's all that had to be done, we wouldn't need to be here in the first place."
"Not necessarily" said Kochanski, "if we hadn't done this, we couldn't have been in that situation in the future. That's the paradox. We've solved it."
"No we haven't" said Lister, "there's still your universe to sort out."
"But her universe is the same as ours previously in time." said Rimmer,"When you go back in time and put yourself as a baby there, it would be putting it in her past as well."
"Actually," said Kochanski, "it probably wouldn't be the same in the past. When it split off from yours 3,000,000 years ago, it created it's own pastas well."
As the bar was closing, a man appeared out of no-where, looked around, said "too early" and vanished.
Fortunately, no-one noticed him.2 hours later, he re-appeared in the room, with a cardboard box. The box had one word written on it, "Ouroborous". He gave a speech to the box, and disappeared. 5 minutes later, Lister re-appeared in the room, this time with Kochanski and Rimmer.
"Are you sure about this" asked Kochanski.
"Trust me" said Lister, "this is the best way. We take a single cell from me in the past, we clone another me from it, and we leave it as a baby in your universe. What could be simpler?"
"It doesn't seem..." Kohanski struggled for words to describe what she felt about the idea of human cloning. Just the very idea was bad enough, but to learn that she had had a long term relationship with the man she was about to clone was even worse!
"It doesn't seem natural. My Dave should have the same chance at a normal birth that you had."
"She's right Lister" said Rimmer, "he should have the same right to be his own father, fathering a child with his own mother, creating a paradox that brings him into creation."
"It's not a paradox, the events justify themself." said Lister, ignoring Rimmer's snide comments about his heritage. Rimmer had suggested on a number of occasions in the years that Lister had known him that his parents had been brother and sister. Rimmer had never actually meant any of it, he had been trying to make a joke and to insult Lister, but once he had learnt that Lister had been his own father, and that Kochanski had been his mother there was no stopping him!
"Besides" said Lister, "It's either this or you Dave never exists at all. This is how he came into existence in the first place."
"I'm telling you, it won't make any difference!" said Dave and Deb Lister in unison.
Back on the planet in the Microverse, the Kochanskis were both very angry, while the Rimmers were both standing by the side, enjoying watching the argumant develop.
"What do you mean it won't make any difference?" asked Kevin, "You managed to splice tuna fish DNA into my Deb's genetic code! Are you honestly telling me that she won't seem at all different if she's half fish?"
"She's not half fish" justified Deb, "there's only a minor colleration. Looking at it sensibly, there's really almost no difference between her and me."
"Stop trying to justify your stupid mistakes!" shouted Kevin.
Kristine glared at Dave. He knew that he had made the same stupid mistake. Kristine had eventually refused to help make a clone of his baby self so he tried to get it done himself. He took a few cells, and tried to copy them using part of the DNA replicator that he had kept after their encounter with it when it had turned Kryten into a human.
Rimmer had warned him about eating his tuna sandwich while he was messing around with the machine, but Lister had ignored him, and had done so anyway. Unfortunately, he dropped a piece of tuna into the machinary and scanned it by accident. Without Kryten's help, he hadn't been able to work out how the machine worked, and he had had to leave part of the tuna's genetic coding in the other Dave's DNA.
"CONGRATULATIONS. YOU HAVE FIXED THE PROBLEMS IN THE TIME LINE." said the voice that they had all heard earlier.
"We've what?" said Kevin, "We turned my girlfriend into a fish, and you say we sorted things out?"
"THAT IS THE WAY THINGS WERE MEANT TO BE.
"The Rimmers both burst out into uncontrollable laughter.
"So the other Lister was meant to be a fish?" asked Arnold.
"HE IS NOT A FISH, HE HAS TUNA DNA SPLICED INTO HIM. THIS WILL HAVE NOIMMEDIATE IMPACT ON HIM, OR ANYTHING IN HIS LIFE. THERE WILL BE ONE POINTIN THE FUTURE, HOWEVER, WHERE HE WILL GROW A SECOND APENDIX. THIS APENDIX WILL CONTAIN AN OVERLY HIGH AMOUNT OF TUNA DNA IN IT. AS SUCH, WHEN HE PLACES AN INFANT CAT IN HIS JACKET POCKET, IT WILL BE REMINDED THAT IT IS HUNGRY, AND WILL PURR."
"So *that's* that difference between our two universes!" said Dave Lister.
"Umm... listen." said Kristine, "Whoever you are, do you think you could dome a really big favour?"
"WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO DO?"
"Well, I've been put in the wrong universe, I'm lost. I'd like to be able to go back to my own home, with my Dave. Could you send me back there?"
"Yeah, me too!" added Kevin.
"THIS WILL NOT BE NECESSARY. As the voice said this, a small house became visible at the horizon. All 6 of the group started to walk towards the house. During the course of the 2 hour journey, the Kochanskis both tried to make contact with the voice again, but failed.
They finally arrived at the house, and Kevin moved forewords to open the main door. When he did so, the group saw who was standing inside.
Dave Lister and Deb Lister were standing next to each other in the house. They both had a hologrammatic "H" on their head.
"Oh smeg" said Kristine,
"Dave?""Who are they" said Arlene, looking back and forth between the pair of living Listers and the pair of hologrammatic ones standing inside the house.
"This is Dave." said Kristine, "This is *my* Dave."
The 6 of them sat around the table once more. They had been told that it would be a few minutes before the time-lines sorted themselves out and they were re-united with their companions.
Kristine still couldn't believe it. She had finally been re-united with her Dave, only to learn that he was staying in this Microverse, trying to sort out all of the problems with the Multiverse! Why him? "Hey, if Rimmer cango around being a hero, I can be the guardian of the universe!" Lister had told her.
What now for her? She could go back to her own universe, but she had heard that Kryten had been hooked up to the main computer that Dave was using in this Microverse, and that Cat had gone universe hopping in an abandoned Dimension Jumping ship. Rimmer had gone pale when the ship had been mentioned. "Which universe did you say he found it in?" he had asked.
She was going to have to stay with this Lister. For good. She wouldn't even be able to hold on to the hope that she'd return to her Dave soon.
Slowly, the 4 images of Cat, Dog, Kryten and Krystal appeared in the empty seats around the table, and two monitors appeared on the table.
"Excuse me, sirs, ma'ams" said the droids in time with each other, "could you please explain what just happened?"
"Oh come on, it's not that bad!" said Lister.
"Not that bad? Not that bad?" screeched Kochanski, "Lister, I would rather spend my time in a universe filled with nothing but French people than spend another second in this universe with you!"
She had lasted a full 5 minutes back on Red Dwarf before she had snapped. At least before the trip, she had held on to her fantasy that she would get back to her own universe whenever Lister did something disgusting, but now she had to admit to herself that this was all there was.
"Uh, guys" said Holly, appearing on the screen in Lister's quarters.
"What is it, Hol?" said Lister.
"I think I should tell you all something. I think I should tell everyone at the same time. Meet outside the Captain's Office in 15 minutes."
"Just so long as he's not going to have another sex change operation to make himself look like Hilly" said Rimmer to Kryten, just as Kochanski and Lister walked into the Drive Room.
"No, we just saw him when he told us to come here" said Lister, "he looked the same as usual."
"Hi guys, what's going on in groove town?" asked Holly, appearing on every view screen in the Drive Room at the same time.
"What did you want to tell us?" asked Rimmer, eager to avoid an overly long conversation with Holly.
"I wanted to introduce you to someone" said Holly. The image of his head moved away from the centre of his screens to make room for another head next to his, a baby's head.
"This is Holly Junior. Hilly's son."