There was, Diane reflected, something almost magical about those
words. They were words of power, words to conjure with. Specif-
ically, they were words to conjure her fellow-prisoners with.
Nyssa arrived within three seconds of her shout, which was pretty
impressive considering that she'd been in the workshop halfway
down the Satellite. She had on a lab coat and gloves that served
to make her look somewhat sinister, in an adorable sort of way.
Doug came dashing in at five seconds. As he had been in the
Artificial Reality machine playing 'Mario 64', that was quite a
feat since he shouldn't have been able to hear. All part of the
magic of mail call, Diane supposed.
Last to show up, at seven seconds, was Number One, female,
soaking wet, and wearing nothing but a towel. It was a shame
that the cameras weren't rolling at that point, because Adric had
quite a ratings-booster here. Diane mentally noted that Number
One being a girl at this time meant that she'd been taking a _cold_
shower, and allowed herself a chuckle.
"Well? What have we got?" Nyssa asked eagerly.
Diane hefted the stack of mail off the mini-transmat platform
and began scanning through it. "Okay," she said, "we've got:
an issue of 'American Rifleman' magazine..."
"Mine," Number One said, taking the magazine from Diane.
"...a letter from Megan and Siobhan..."
"That's mine," said Doug. He took the bulky envelope and turn-
ed quickly away before anyone could notice his eyes misting up.
"...an issue of 'Cosmo'. That's mine... a letter from Publisher's
Clearinghouse addressed to 'Occupant'..." Diane held out the en-
velope. When no one took it, she threw it over her shoulder.
"...a bill from Uncle Mary's Pizza, Taco, and Video Rental. That's
for all of us. An 'Acme Industries' catalog..."
"I'll take that," Nyssa said.
"...a 'Wall Street Journal'..."
Doug took this and tucked it smartly under his arm.
"...a campaign flyer for someone named Julson who is running
for the North Dakota Legislature..."
When no one spoke up, this also went into the over-shoulder
"...the Otakulumbia House Anime Club's Video of the Month.
Looks like 'Space Pirate Captain Harlock'..."
"Mine!" shouted Doug, Number One, and Nyssa simultaneously,
greed practically glowing out of their eyes.
"_Ours_, then. And, lastly, an issue of 'Deranged Alien Scientist'
"Minemineminemine," Nyssa blurted, snatching the thing up so
fast that she nearly got a couple of Diane's fingers with it. The
others had just enough time to get a glimpse of the cover pict-
ure -- a sinisterly-lit photo of a woman with spiky red hair -- be-
fore Nyssa jammed it into her lab coat and dashed away, chuck-
ling in a vaguely unsettling way.
The three Americans looked at each other for a moment, then all
three said in an eerie chorus: "This does _not_ bode well."
"This is _great_!" Nyssa exclaimed as she sat down in the work-
shop (her Lab, she insisted) to read. She scanned through the
magazine's contents page.
"Oooh... This sounds good. 'It's All in the Samples: an Interview
with Washuu Hakubi'. 'Ten Warning Signs that Your Experiment
Might Run Amok'. 'Obsession: the Misunderstood Emotion'.
Hmmm... Let's have a look at the Project of the Month..." Nyssa
opened out the centerfold, revealing an incredibly complex sche-
matic diagram. She gave a delighted squeal.
"A Sub-Tachyonic Biphased Negaflectalyzer! I've always wanted
to make one of those! And, if I rob some parts off the microwave
oven, I'll have everything I need. This is going to be great!"
Sometime later, Diane happened to walk past the workshop door.
From within, a manic hum of power tools could be heard, as well
as a disturbing amount of laughter. She shuddered and walked
"Bravo, Nyssa!" Nyssa shouted. "This is, without a doubt, the
finest Negaflectalyzer I have ever built!" This was perfectly true,
what with this being the only Negaflectalyzer she had ever built.
Which is not to say that the Negaflectalyzer wasn't impressive. It
most certainly was that. The device took up most of the open
space in the shop (Lab), and looked somewhat like a hyper-
advanced shower. There was an open platform area about four
feet square, with several ominous-looking arms pointing at it
from above. Connected to the device by thick cables were a large
keypad and a steel bowl that had nasty protuberances all over it.
The whole thing was painted black, appearance being a large
part of Deranged Science.
"Now all I need is a vict-- er, test subject."
As if on cue, Number One chose that moment to enter the room.
"Hey, Nyssa. We're fixing to watch 'Captain Harlock', if you
want to... What the Hell is _that_?"
"It's my new Sub-Tachyonic Biphased Negaflectalyzer!" Nyssa
exclaimed happily. "Do you like it?"
"Uh, yeah. It's... cool, I guess."
"Say, you wouldn't mind helping me with it, would you?" Nyssa
Number One gulped and gave the machine an uneasy look. There
were far too many pointy-looking things on it for his liking. "Well,
actually, you see, uh..."
Nyssa narrowed her eyes a little at this show of reluctance. Oh,
well. Any obstacle could be overcome via proper technique. She
stuck out her lip in a cute pout and fluttered her eyelashes. "Oh,
please, please help me," she said in that husky, breathy tone of
voice that no man can refuse. "I can't do this without the help of
a big, strong man."
Number One's brain melted. "Umm... okay. I'll help--"
Nyssa had the steel bowl firmly on his head before the 'okay' was
completely out of his mouth. "Great. Thanks. Now, just stand
still for a moment..." She put on a pair of dark safety glasses and
took up the keypad.
"Will this hurt?" Number One asked.
"I won't feel a thing," Nyssa replied, then pressed a button marked
'Re-heat' (it was one of the parts from the microwave oven).
There was a scream and a flash of light...
TO DIE FOR: MYSTERY PSYCHO THEATER 3000
[cue Theme Song]
o/~ In the not-too-distant future
Not too far from This Time Round
There was a girl named Nyssa whose
Sanity was not-quite-sound.
She and some others used to fuss and fight
And destroy the pub almost every night.
So the staff and patrons of that place
Used Borusa's Time-Scoop to stick them up in spaaaaace...
"You'll regret this!!"
"We'll send them crappy fiction
The worst we can find. (la-la-laaa)
They'll have to sit and read them all
To drive the violence from their minds." (la-la-laaa)
Now keep in mind only Adric controls
When the session begins or is through
As he tries to force some sense into
This completely unhinged crew.
PSYCHO ROLL CALL!
NYSSA! ("Accept no substitutes.")
DOUG! ("Don't make me come over there.")
NUMBER ONE! ("Who are you callin' a chick?!")
DIAAAAANE! ("Generic catch-phrase!")
If you're wondering how they eat and breathe
And other science facts,
Just repeat to yourself, "It's just a 'fic.
I should really just relax."
'Cause it's Mystery Psycho Theater 3000!
[Interior bridge of the Satellite of Love]
[The bridge has been redecorated. A television set and VCR sit
on the console, with several stereo speakers connected them. On
the back wall, a large black flag with a skull-and-crossbones has
been tacked up, along with posters of various spaceships. A tray
with a bottle and four delicate wineglasses sits off to one side, and
a large couch is in the middle of the room, facing the TV set.
DOUG (a tall, ponytailed man wearing a long cloak and a black
jumpsuit with a white skull-and-crossbones on the front) and
DIANE (a pretty blonde wearing a long, shapeless blue dress)
are hooking up the last of the speakers.]
DOUG: [looks up] Oh, hi everybody! Welcome to the Satellite
of Love. We're just getting geared up to watch the greatest sci-
fi anime of all time, 'Space Pirate Captain Harlock'.
DIANE: Since we are all rabid otaku -- that is to say, drooling,
no-life anime fanboys and fangirls -- we thought we'd really get
into the spirit of things by doing a little dress-up. Doug is dressed
as that most dashing of swashbucklers, Captain Harlock, himself,
but without the eyepatch.
DOUG: I tried it, but I kept running into things.
DIANE: While I am Harlock's faithful companion, musician, and
alcoholic alien-babe, Meeme.
DOUG: And, of course, we've got Harlock's trademark flag, as
well as pictures of the spaceships 'Arcadia', 'Deathshadow', and
DIANE: As I said, we have no life.
[NUMBER ONE (a short, dark man wearing jeans, a sleeveless
'Smith and Wesson' t-shirt, and sunglasses) enters from the right,
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE) Hey! I thought you were going to
dress for the occasion.
NUMBER ONE: (to DOUG) Never mind that. We've got big
DIANE: What kind of-- [looks off-stage to the right] Ah, I see
[NYSSA (a beautiful, petite teenaged girl with curly brown hair
and wearing a white lab coat) enters from the right, along with a
second NUMBER ONE, who is identical to the first.]
DOUG: [looks at the two NUMBER ONEs] (to NYSSA) What
the Hell is going on here?
NYSSA: [laughs] Aren't I a genius? My Sub-Tachyonic Biphased
Negaflectalyzer works perfectly!
DIANE: (to NYSSA) I'll take your word for it. What have you
NYSSA: I told you. I built a Negaflectalyzer, and used it to make
a doppelganger of Number One.
DOUG: (horrified) So, now we've got the original nutcase _and_
a carbon-copy to deal with?
NYSSA: Not exactly. Therein lies the real genius of the Nega-
flectalyzer. The copy is a perfect mirror image of the original,
identical, but opposite.
DIANE: (bored) Oh, so it's going to be one of those evil-twin
plots, where we end up having to test them to see which one's the
real one, is that it?
[The COPY NUMBER ONE suddenly rushes across the room
and embraces DOUG.]
COPY NUMBER ONE: Oh, Doug! My heart is filled with bro-
therly affection at the sight of you! My dearest comrade! I
know we've had our differences, but I want us to face the future
together in a spirit of peaceful cooperation!
DIANE: Or maybe not. What's with that guy? Shouldn't he be
the 'evil clone', or something?
DOUG: (to COPY NUMBER ONE) Let go of me!
COPY NUMBER ONE: (to DOUG) I love you, man!
NYSSA: (to DIANE) Don't you understand? The Negaflectaly-
zer doesn't create an _evil_ clone, necessarily, just an opposite
DIANE: I see! And, since the original was the evil one in this
NUMBER ONE: (indignantly) Hey!
DIANE: --we get a 'good twin'. Amazing!
NYSSA: That's what deranged science is all about.
[COPY NUMBER ONE is still hugging DOUG, who is trying to
get away, while NUMBER ONE looks on in disgust.]
DIANE: At least they'll be easy to tell apart.
[COPY NUMBER ONE partially releases DOUG and looks at
COPY NUMBER ONE: Come on, everyone! Let's all join hands
and sing! (singing) I love you/You love me...
[NUMBER ONE runs off to the left. The sounds of vomitting
come from that direction a moment later.]
DIANE: (to COPY NUMBER ONE) Uh, maybe later, Nega-One.
COPY NUMBER ONE: (to DIANE) Oh, you've given me a name!
Thank you, Diane! It's women like you that make me proud to be
[More puking sounds from off-screen]
DIANE: Uh, yeah.
[A light on the console begins to flash]
NYSSA: Well, it looks like Team Rocket is calling. [presses
[Interior back room at This Time Round]
[The room is filled with a mixture of electronic command-and-
control epuipment, computers, and pub supplies. Behind the
control console stand ADRIC (a black-haired teenager in an ugly
yellow-and-green outfit) and TEGAN (a pretty, short-haired
woman in a black minidress). BOTH are smiling pleasantly.]
ADRIC: Well, hello there, Freddy, Shaggy, Daphne, and Velma!
[NYSSA and DIANE look at each other]
NYSSA and DIANE: (to each other) _You're_ Velma.
DOUG: (to screen) Hi, Adric.
NEGA-ONE: (to screen) Hello, Adric my friend! It's so nice to
see you. I'd just like to take this opportunity to tell you how
much I appreciate your providing me with this nice home and
such a wonderful set of friends!
ADRIC: [arches eyebrow] So, the shemale was the first one to
crack, eh? I thought his mind was stronger than that.
[NUMBER ONE enters from the left, looking angry]
NUMBER ONE: That ain't me, weasel-boy. And don't call me
NEGA-ONE: (to NUMBER ONE) Now now. Hostility won't
NUMBER ONE: (to NEGA-ONE) Get bent, wuss.
ADRIC: Well, they make a cute couple, anyway. Speaking of
which, Harry is unable to be with us today. He is in the hospital,
recovering from his date with Mrs. Forrester. The doctors have
assured me that with proper bed rest, vitamin infusions, and psy-
chiatric counselling, he should be back with us in no time. In the
meantime, Miss Tegan Jovanka will be filling in for him.
TEGAN: [waves] G'day, everyone!
[NYSSA is leaning toward the screen, an excited look on her
NYSSA: Hah! You just made your fatal error, Swamprat! Tegan!
The Time-Scoop controls must be down there somewhere! Find
them and bring us down from here!
[ADRIC is quietly chuckling, while TEGAN shakes her head
TEGAN: Sorry, Nys. No can do.
NYSSA: What do you mean, 'No can do'?
TEGAN: I mean, this is my big chance at stardom. Adric here
is giving me a shot at achieving my dream by letting me appear
on his show. I can't let that get by me. And, besides, this thera-
py bit is to help you get better, after all.
NYSSA: What!? I thought you were my best friend!
TEGAN: I am. What I'm doing is for your own good, as well as
NYSSA: (angrily) You've sold me out! You've bloody well gone
and sold me out for a bit part on a cable-TV show! You bitch!
NEGA-ONE: (to NYSSA) Now, Nyssa, let's be nice...
[ADRIC is laughing harder than ever.]
TEGAN: (firmly) You'll thank me for this later, Nys.
NYSSA: Like Hell I will! You backstabber! And to think I had
a crush on you once!
ADRIC: Yes! Ratings jackpot! Eat your heart out, 'Ally McBeal'!
I keep saying this show needs more lesbia-- OWWW!
[TEGAN kicks ADRIC in the shin, hard]
ADRIC: Aheh heh. So, anyway, let's see what's in the mail.
[FRANCOIS the Ogron (a massive, brutish-looking humanoid)
enters from the left, carrying some envelopes.]
FRANCOIS: (to OTHERS) Hello, boss-boy. Hello, mouthy girl.
Friendly postman Francois delivering mail. (flatly) Whee. [hands
envelopes to ADRIC]
ADRIC: (to FRANCOIS) Thanks. Say, where's your postman's
FRANCOIS: Pants too tight. Friendly postman Francois wear
them, be disgruntled, soprano postman Francois. [looks at screen]
Little mirror-eyes man now two? Figures. First turn into girl,
now split in two. Francois not know, but imagine that it suck to
be little mirror-eyes man. [shrugs and exits to the left]
ADRIC: Uh, yes. Anyway, let's see what's in the mail. [opens
envelope and scans letter] Here we go. This person writes:
[reading] "Wonderful show! I laughed and laughed. Something
I was wondering, though: Is there any chance of getting that
guy/girl to appear on _my_ show? I think he/she'd be perfect.
P.S. You should try to have more fights." That's from... Mr.
[ADRIC throws the letter over his shoulder and opens another.]
ADRIC: We also have this letter from a faithful viewer who
writes: [reading] "I love the show. Always a good laugh. But,
I'd like to ask Number One why he doesn't just carry a thermos
full of hot water with him into the Theater, so he can change
back to male when someone splashes him during an argument?"
That's from a Mr. William December S...
[NYSSA is in the background, clearly boiling mad. NUMBER
ONE is looking at the screen.]
NUMBER ONE: Well, that's simple. The reason is... ah... that
is to say... it's... ummmm... [pause] Hell, I don't know why I
never thought of that. That's pretty good! Thanks!
DOUG: 'December'. That's a cool name. [laughs] Get it? 'Cool'?
'December'? December is in the winter...
OTHERS: [look at DOUG]
DOUG: (to OTHERS, defensively) Well, I thought it was funny.
[ADRIC has the last envelope open and is reading its contents.]
ADRIC: This last one says, in part: [reading] "I saw your last
show, and have to agree with your statement that lesbianism
would be a big boost to the ratings. I know _I_ would watch it
more often. P.S. Nyssa is one righteous babe! Is she taken?"
That's from a Ms. Martina N.
NEGA-ONE: (to NYSSA) How nice! You have a fan!
NYSSA: [rolls eyes]
ADRIC: But, enough idle frippery. Your session for today is an
unfinished Second Doctor fanfic called 'Gates of Dawn', by a Mr.
Ken Young. Put up whatever fight you can. (to TEGAN) Send
them the fanfic, Tegan!
TEGAN: Sure thing, Adric.
[TEGAN presses a large and conspicuous button on the console.]
[Various alarms, lights, and sirens go off as general chaos ensues.
Oddly, NEGA-ONE remains calm.]
DIANE: (to NEGA-ONE) Come on! We've got fanfic-sign! If
you don't get into the Theater, Adric will start playing Barry Man-
ilow on our stereo!
NEGA-ONE: (brightly) That's okay! Barry Manilow is my fav-
OTHERS: [look ill and run off]
[Door sequence: 6... 5... 4... 3... 2... 1...]
[SOL, Theater interior]
[The four enter the theater from a door on the right, all carrying
popcorn and drinks. NYSSA takes the aisle seat, with NUMBER
ONE (F) on her left, DOUG on the other side of him, and DIANE
to DOUG's left.]
NUMBER ONE: Ugh. What a sissy. (to NYSSA) Why'd you
have to make a wimped-out copy of me, anyway?
NYSSA: (to NUMBER ONE) If I had a reason, I wouldn't be a
DIANE: (to NYSSA) And you _are_ that.
DOUG: Fanfic inbound! This is not a drill!
[A screen in front of the four lights up and words begin to appear
>GATES OF DAWN
>by Ken Young
DOUG: (singing) He was too young/To fall in love...
>Darkness the sound of some one falling over a pile of junk.
NYSSA: Fanfic the intro as a sentence fragment.
>A voice like running water " Lord why are we here? Its a
NUMBER ONE: I've heard many Israelis say those exact words.
>" I need to meet someone and don't call me Lord you know I
>find it irritating."
DIANE: No 'Lord', huh? Well, how about 'Pooty-pie', then?
>" Sorry Master."
DOUG: (Larry Hagman) It's all right, Jeannie. Just get Major
Healey out of the Cuisinart and send all those penguins back
where you found them, and we'll just forget the whole thing.
ALL: [cross their arms and nod while making a BOING! sound]
>" Not that either, it's worse. Anyway I freed you a long time
>ago. Why won't you call me by name Varne?"
NUMBER ONE: (singing) You don't have to call me 'Darlin'/
Darlin/But, you neve-e-er even call me by my na-a-ame!
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE) Has anyone ever told you that you
what a marvellous singing voice you have?
NUMBER ONE: [puffs up slightly] (to DOUG) Why, no, they
DOUG: [nods] Well, there's a reason for that...
NUMBER ONE: [sulks]
>" Well if you want the truth
ALL: (shouting) YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!!
>I can't pronounce it
DIANE: Mmm. Name must be Polish.
DOUG: (indignantly, to DIANE) Hey! Watch that! [whaps
DIANE on the head]
>and anyway you can't free me. Let me remind you Lord my
>'Dearly Beloved' grandfather placed me in your service and
>until both of us change our minds you are stuck with me Lord.
NUMBER ONE: (Varne) I am but the chewed-up gum to the
magnificent shoe sole that is you, my Lord!
>Besides I like being in service to you it's so much more
>interesting than hanging about
NYSSA: ...on a meathook. Well, a _little_ bit, anyway.
>at home. Now who are we here to meet Lord?"
NUMBER ONE: (God) This guy named Moses. I'm going to
play a little prank on him involving this here bush. Got any
matches on you?
DIANE: (to NUMBER ONE) So, basically, Number One, your
philosophy is, 'I want to get into Hell without having to wait
around in line'. Is that it?
>"You will find out, now silence. I don't want to attract attention.
NYSSA: (Varne) Then, you really should take off the tutu and
the Carmen Miranda hat.
>And don't call me Lord!"
NUMBER ONE: (God) I told you, it's 'Big Daddy Yahweh' now!
DIANE: [points at NUMBER ONE while looking at ceiling] I
have _nothing_ to do with that guy, Lord. Really.
>"Well Sir if you stop shouting I will keep silent Sir.
DOUG: (surgeon, urgently) Nurse! Get me 10 cc's of punctua-
tion and some dialogue tags, stat!
NYSSA: (to DOUG) I thought I was supposed to do all the
>"I mean it. If you don't shut up I will put a binding on you.
NUMBER ONE: ...just like the one Ukyou wears to keep her
boobs from standing out while she's dressed as a guy.
DIANE and NYSSA: [wince and cross their arms over their
>This is too important to risk accidents."
>"Yes Sir I hear and obey Master."
DOUG: You know, most of the bosses I've had would've _loved_
an employee like ol' Varne.
NUMBER ONE: (to DOUG) How do you pronounce 'Varne',
anyway? Does it rhyme with 'barn' or 'Barney'?
DOUG: Doesn't matter. We're in text format.
DIANE: [elbows DOUG] Don't say that kind of stuff. It breaks
the reader's mood.
NYSSA: [shakes head] Fourth wall, we hardly knew ye...
>Silence. time passes then a sound like sawing wood.
ALL: [make snoring noises]
>A box just visible in the darkness takes form.. Two indistinct
>figures emerge. One starts to speak and then both are enveloped
>by a sphere of light. They freeze.
NUMBER ONE: (indistinct figure) It's the cops! The jig is up!
> Strangely the light only illuminates the figures everything else
>remains in shadow.
>"Keep watch if any of my kin start to interfere let me know
>otherwise keep out of sight."
NYSSA: You know, I've got some extra conjunctions and punc-
tuation marks that I'd be happy to donate to this fanfic...
>The light dims slightly the figures start to move.
>"Grandfather where are we?"
>"On Earth Susan I hope you like it here."
DIANE: (Doctor, maniacally) ...because it's where you'll be
spending the REST OF ETERNITY!! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!
NYSSA: Whoa, Susan. No need to get aggressive!
DOUG: Actually, I think that was one of the other characters
saying that. Probably the unnamed guy who doesn't like being
NYSSA: Well, how am I supposed to know that? I'm not psy-
chic... [pause] Okay, I _am_ psychic, but that still doesn't help.
>"You! Who are you?"
NUMBER ONE: (Susan) No, Grandfather, Who is you. That's
NYSSA: [whaps NUMBER ONE on the head]
NUMBER ONE: Oww!
NYSSA: (to NUMBER ONE) I got whapped for making that
pun once before, so you get the same.
>"Someone you will meet again Doctor. In your future and my
>past. Now keep quiet and listen."
>"Why should I and why young man are you here?"
DOUG: (mystery man) Because I've come to tell you a story...
About a man named 'Jed'. He was a poor mountaineer who bare-
ly kept his family fed. Then, one day when he was shooting at
>"Because this is where you told me you first met me and that is
>the only answer you are getting now."
DIANE: (mystery man) So, you can either love it or shove it.
>The light round Susan intensifies and she seems frozen,
NUMBER ONE: ...while the heavy, rectangular Susan weak-
DOUG: Susan's not weak, just lazy.
OTHERS: [throw popcorn at DOUG]
>"What are you doing to Susan?"
DIANE: (mystery man) Checking for pubic lice. Don't worry,
it's standard procedure...
>"Nothing she is in temporal stasis. I can't do anything
>permanent to either of you. Now listen this is the first time you
>met me but not the first for me.
NUMBER ONE: (mystery man) I... have a confession to make.
You weren't really my first time...
>I have taken care of your immediate problems, on the desk you
>will find the deeds for this yard and enrolment papers for Susan
NYSSA: Rolling papers for Susan? Figures.
DOUG: (to NYSSA) 'Enrolment', er-- I mean, 'enrollment' pap-
ers, not 'rolling' papers. You know, like for school.
NYSSA: (to DOUG) Rolling papers in school? She must be in
DOUG: No, that's-- [sighs] Never mind.
>in the local school. You will remember that you arranged this
DIANE: Who was that masked man who set all this up?
NUMBER ONE: Why, shucks! That was the Lone Arranger!
[DIANE and NUMBER ONE laugh, while DOUG just covers his
face and shakes his head.]
DOUG: (to NYSSA) Nyssa, would you please swap seats with
me? I don't want to sit between these two any more.
NYSSA: (to DOUG) Not on your life, Kemo Sabe.
>Also on the desk you will find two rings one for you and one for
>Susan you will place the rings on whichever finger fits and then
NUMBER ONE: (mystery man) At that point, you will be hus-
band and wife.
DOUG: (Doctor) We can't do that! She's my granddaughter!
NUMBER ONE: (mystery man) Not to worry. I have also arr-
anged for the two of you to immediately move to West Virginia.
>When someone notices a ring you will remember and tell them
>where you got it.
DIANE: Wal-mart, aisle nine, on the shelf between the Pokemon
cards and the arc welders.
>Something else you will remember is that I am at my strongest
>and you are at your weakest.
NYSSA: (mystery man) Remember, also, that I say 'Neener
neener neener, Wussy-man!'
>I will not be able to do this to you again . I will see you at The
>Gates Of Dawn."
DOUG: (mystery man) We'll wait there until Dawn gets her
dogs put up, and then we'll proceed into the Front Yard of Dawn.
>The glow intensifies and the Doctor freezes caught in temporal
>stasis. "Come Varne
DIANE: (Varne) If you insist, Lord. [begins moaning erotically]
NUMBER ONE: [looks at DIANE, gulps, and begins fanning
DOUG: [turns bright red and looks away] (muttering) Think
about baseball... baseball...
NYSSA: [rolls eyes] (to DIANE, sarcastically) You really
should see a doctor, Diane. That asthma sounds awful!
>I have done what I can to preserve my past we can leave now."
DOUG: [laughs] That's good! 'About time', get it? [looks at
OTHERS] See, it's a story about time travel... And he preserved
OTHERS: [stare at DOUG]
DOUG: (defensively) Well, _I_ think it's funny!
>Sir I am ready."
>Silence the glow dissipates the Doctor moves to the table
>pocketing one set of papers he glances at the rest.
NYSSA: Fanfic the sentence is complete but is a run on should
be split up in a few places would be more readable then.
>"Susan I am sorry but you start school on Monday concentrate
>on the history."
>Underneath the papers he finds two rings the colour of fresh
NYSSA: (interested) Blood? Where?
DIANE: (to NYSSA) Chill out, Norma Bates.
>putting one of them on his hand he gives the other to Susan .
>As she dons it both rings change to their flesh colour and fade
>from conscious awareness.
DOUG: Except that the Doctor develops the habit of occasionally
muttering to someone he calls 'my precioussssss'.
>Varne "Where are we Lord?"
DIANE: Is this supposed to be script format?
NYSSA: I hate script format. I never want to be written that
>"Nathol, Varne, the ass hole of the Universe.
DOUG: No, seriously, tell us how you feel about it. Don't beat
around the bush.
NUMBER ONE: I'm betting 'Nathol' is somewhere in New Jer-
>The only dry land is in the mountains I have been here before
>once and it was just as bad."
DOUG: (mystery man) It was like being in Hell, but with worse
DIANE: I ask that almost every day.
>"Pardon Varne and don't call me Lord."
>"Why were you here before if this place is so bad Sir?"
DOUG: (mystery man) Jim MacDougal and I were looking at
developing some real estate...
>"To get at the Gates of Dawn. I was running and the Gates
>were the only way out."
NUMER ONE: (Varne) You're having another flashback, aren't
>"Never mind. Varne we are only a day away time to make some
>fine adjustments. Remember hooves not claws and loose the
NUMBER ONE: Huh?
NYSSA: I like claws and fangs.
[ALL look at one another and shrug.]
>Varne " That will reduce my combat efficiency Lord"
>" I am aware of that. It is more important not to be noticed.
NYSSA: (Varne) Then, if I may, Lord, let me again suggest
that you lose the tutu and Carmen Miranda hat.
>This planet is monitored by my kin and everyone else who uses
>mercenaries. By the way talking horses are not common round
>here so keep quiet when anyone is around."
DOUG: (Varne, as Mr. Ed) Okay, Wilbur.
>Varne " I hear and obey. "
>Varne " Lord why did they put so much effort into that
DIANE: (mystery man) Just because.
OTHERS: [throw popcorn at DIANE]
>" There are things in the swamps as well as insects.
NUMBER ONE: (singing) Things that crawl and things that fly/
And things that creep around on the ground/And they say the
ghost of Lucius Clay/Gets up and he walks around!
NYSSA: (to DOUG) Any idea where One gets this stuff?
DOUG: (to NYSSA) Not a clue. Not sure I want to know, eith-
>While they are quite happy eating each other
DIANE and NUMBER ONE: [snicker]
>they do prefer outsiders. Anyway onward and by the way don't
>call me Lord."
>Varne " Yes Sir."
>Varne "Sir why were you running?"
DOUG: (Varne) Are you a sissy little girly-man coward, or
>" I wish I knew that's part of what I lost when I passed the
NUMBER ONE: ...bar exam. That, and all my ethics.
>gates. All I can remember is my kin are hunting me."
> Elsewhere; The column moved slowly up and down and a
>faint humming could heard.
DOUG: [puts his hand over DIANE's mouth]
NYSSA: (to DOUG) Nice save!
>A light started blinking on the console
ALL: (shouting) Aaaaah! They've got fanfic-sign!
>and a buzzer began to sound. A badly dressed figure hurried out
>of the depths of the machine to the console.
DOUG: 'Badly dressed'? Meaning what?
NYSSA: A tutu and a Carmen Miranda hat?
DIANE: (to NYSSA) Going to run that gag into the ground?
NYSSA: (to DIANE) Are you talking to me, Miss 'Planet of
Open-Minded Bisexual Nymphomaniac Stewardesses in Heat'?
>He was followed by what was obviously a Scot.
NUMBER ONE: (Mike Myers Scotsman) Where's yer shitter?
I've got a turtle head pokin' out!
>" What is wrong Doctor?"
DIANE: (Doctor) Nothing, Jamie. You know, if you're going
to wear a skirt that short, you should at least shave your legs.
>"Nothing serious we seem to have picked up a message.
DOUG: (Doctor) Strange. They want to know if our refrigerat-
or is running...
>Odd its in some sort of code all I can make out are some time
>space coordinates. Interesting." " Doctor You aren't going
>there are you?"
NYSSA: And, I suspect he'll get the same answer we get when
we tell Diane 'not to go there'...
>"Why not Jamie have you got anything else to do?"
NUMBER ONE: (Jamie) Actually, I hear tha' there be a lovely
planet nae too far away tha' has got the prettiest li'l sheep ye've
NYSSA: [glares at NUMBER ONE]
DIANE: And you say _I_ 'go there'...
>" But Doctor."
DOUG: (Doctor, as Joe Pesci) What are youse sayin'? That I'm
some kinda proctologist? Is _that_ what you're sayin'?
>" Oh go and see if Victoria is ready. We will be arriving soon."
>Back on Nathol
ALL: (shouting) Ass hole of the Universe!
>The rider had reached the Eastern end of the causeway.
>"At last Varne we are reaching what could be described as a
>habitable part of this dump."
DOUG: I've got it! The nameless guy here is actually a British
>Pulling a map from his pocket he studied it.
NUMBER ONE: (mystery man, as Bugs Bunny) Drat! I knew I
should've turned left at Albuquerque!
DOUG: (mystery man, as Ryouga Hibiki) Where the Hell am I
_now_? Ranma, this is all your fault!
>"All right Varne we just follow this road to the Gates then the
>recruiting station and the spaceport are a days journey beyond.
>We will stay the night at the Gates."
DIANE: The Gates Motel?
ALL: [make screeching violin sounds a-la 'Psycho']
>Varne "Yes Sir."
>"Varne be alert I don't know who sent that message which is
>why we are sneaking in."
DOUG: (mystery man) All we know is that they want to know if
our refrigerator is running...
NYSSA: (Varne) 'To You, With Love'.
>Sir there are two men just round the next bend I don't sense any
>"Alright Varne keep quiet and let me handle this."
DIANE: (Varne) Hmmm... should I tell him about the flame-
>A few minuets later
NUMBER ONE: ...there was a rumba of distant thunder...
NYSSA: ...and a stranger waltzed up...
DIANE: ...and polkaed him in the eye.
DOUG: (to OTHERS) Give me a break! I can't let disco on any
longer. It's all just too mosh.
NUMBER ONE: Well, _I_ thought it was a nice twist.
>round the next bend the rider looks down at two bodies.
DIANE: (mystery man) Ah! 'Tis the scourge of the Natholian
swamp, the dreaded 'beast with two backs'!
>Stowing a repeating crossbow he speaks.
>" What a place even the bandits are incompetent. Still lets see
>what they were carrying."
NYSSA: Huh? What happened? Did the Not-a-Lord guy kill
them, or were they just lying there, or what? Were they bandits?
Just what is going on?
DIANE: (to NYSSA) You're thinking way too much. Just take
some deep, cleansing breaths, lean back, and let the fanfic wash
>Dismounting he searched the bodies finding the odd dagger
DIANE: What constitutes an 'odd' dagger?
NUMBER ONE: One with a handle carved with the likeness of
>some blood suckers
DOUG: ...played by Senators Schumer, Boxer, and Feinstein in
an amazingly well-typecast cameo.
>and a handful of change plus some dried meat.
>" Well Varne they really were useless still at least we now know
>what the money looks like."
ALL: Show me the money!
>Taking some metal disks out of his pocket he concentrated as
>the disks gradually changed to match what seems to be the
>highest value coins.
NYSSA: In a fiendish counterfeiting plot, our protagonist turns
a handful of 1-ounce platinum disks into Natholian 4-cent coins.
>" That's it, lets push on we should reach the Gates by nightfall
>Varne." "Yes Sir."
DOUG: Aye aye, Cap'n!
DIANE: Hai, sensei.
NYSSA: Jawohl, Herr Standartenfuhrer!
NUMBER ONE: Blow it out your pie-hole, dipshit.
OTHERS: [look at NUMBER ONE]
NUMBER ONE: [shrugs] We Southerners ain't good at subser-
DIANE: Huh? Where'd Part 2 go?
DOUG: (to DIANE) Shhh... The sooner we get done, the soon-
er we get out.
>n 700 Varne heard a knock on the door climbing out of the
>bath and wrapping herself in a towel she went to the door.
DIANE: But, I thought Varne was some kind of four-legged an-
imal, like a horse, or something...
NYSSA: (to DIANE) Well, there haven't been many clues, but
I think Varne is some kind of shape-changer.
DOUG: Ugh. You can't trust shape-changers.
NUMBER ONE: (indignantly, to DOUG) Hey! _I'm_ sort of
DOUG: [shrugs] Point proven.
>"Page " Milady I have your luggage here and a message from
NYSSA: The punctuation is starting to give me a headache.
DIANE: And who is 'Count Melmoth'? Did he crop up in part
2, or what?
DOUG: Let's just assume that the mystery guy is Melmoth, until
we find out differently.
NUMBER ONE: Wasn't 'Melmoth' Alf's home planet?
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE) No, that's 'Melmac'.
>Opening the door Varne faced the page "Well lets have them ."
>Page "Sorry Milady here are the bags."
>Varne "And the message?"
DOUG: (Page) Milady, it says, 'Is your refrigerator running?'
>"Page "Count Melmoth will be in the bar when you are ready."
NUMBER ONE: Melmoth, Melmoth... I know! He's that cat-
thing in 'Pokemon'!
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE) No, that's 'Meowth'.
>Varne "Well tell the gentleman that when I am ready I will take
>coffee in the lounge and I expect him to join me.
NUMBER ONE: Bitchy chick. Must be her time of the month.
NYSSA: (to NUMBER ONE) You sexist pig!
[NYSSA dumps her drink on NUMBER ONE, changing him
into a pretty, red-haired girl]
NYSSA: (to NUMBER ONE (Female)) It amazes me that you
persist in your male-chauvinist crap, since you know good and
well that this always happens when you do it.
NUMBER ONE (Female): (to NYSSA) Hah! I've got the last
laugh, this time...
[NUMBER ONE (F) pulls a thermos of hot water from under her
seat and pours it on herself, turning back to male]
NUMBER ONE: (to NYSSA) So--
[DIANE tosses her own drink on NUMBER ONE, turning him
NUMBER ONE (F): --there.
[NYSSA and DIANE look smug, while DOUG snickers]
NUMBER ONE (F): (to audience) So _that_ answers the
question of why I don't carry a thermos of hot water with me.
I'm still a girl, just three times wetter. I'm starting to wonder
if they just like me better this way...
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE(F)) Well, I don't see how we could
like you any _less_.
DIANE: (Page, as nurse) Use the defibrillator now!
>Grabbing the bags Varne slammed the door muttering to
>" Damn it, Melmoth and the bar,
DOUG: (announcer) That's right! Coming up this Fall on the
WB... one's a mysterious guy who hates being called 'Lord' and
the other's a long, but narrow, piece of iron! They get together
for some wacky hijinks on our new series 'Melmoth and the Bar'!
Don't miss it!
>the idiot's backsliding if I have to drag him out of a bar again
>he'll never hear the last of it. Where in the nine hells is a dress?
NUMBER ONE (F): Beelzebub's closet might be a good place to
>why can't he let me pack?. . Why did I have this idea? why
>don't I quit?
NYSSA: Why are you asking us?
>why don't I stop asking myself stupid questions? Damn
>Grandfather! Damn him! Calm I must be calm! Gods I hate it
>when he gets bored, why can't he kill someone? that always
>cheers him up .
NYSSA: Hey, I'm starting to like this 'Melmoth' guy! He's a
> In the bar 'Melmoth' was on his second double gin and tonic
>when the message arrived.
DOUG: (Melmoth) Strange... now they want to know if I have
Prince Albert in a can...
>'Melmoth' "Excuse me"
>Barmaid "Yes Milord?"
>'Melmoth' I would like coffee for two delivered to the lounge oh
NUMBER ONE (F): I've got it! Melmoth was that big bug-thing
that Godzilla fought!
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE (F)) No, that was 'Mothra'.
>Barmaid "Yes Milord. Any preferences ?"
DIANE: (Melmoth) Actually, I'm quite fond of young Filipino
OTHERS: [look vaguely ill]
>The lounge was dimly lit with incredibly soft chairs
NYSSA: Huh? Lit with chairs? What, did they forget to pay
the utilities bill, so they have to burn the furniture?
>arranged around low tables. Close to the door three figures
>were sitting, at the far end what light there was reflected
>strangely off some seated figures.
DOUG: They were Elvis impersonators, and the glare from the
950,000 sequins they had on made it impossible to see.
NYSSA: (Victoria) We are not amused.
>Victoria "Why are we sitting here?"
NUMBER ONE (F): (Doctor) Well, if you aren't comfortable,
you could always come sit in my lap.
DIANE: (Victoria) I would, but you'll have to make Jamie get
>Doctor "Well first we are early the coordinates refer to
>sometime in the next hour and second its comfortable here."
NYSSA: (Doctor) And, third, the male strip show starts in five
>Melmoth entered the lounge carrying his third gin.
>At the table.
>Jamie "Doctor what's that ring on your hand, it's glowing?"
DIANE: (Doctor) It's a 'mood ring', Jamie. And, if you'll pull
that kilt up a bit more, you'll see it glow even more.
DOUG: (to DIANE) No more slash-fics for you.
>Doctor "Well Jamie it's I don't remember no yes I do someone
>gave it to me he never said what it was."
NYSSA: Couldn't we take some of the extra quotation marks
from earlier and recycle them into some commas and periods for
this part? I'll even donate the labor for _free_...
>'Melmoth' "I can tell you, it's what known as blood crystal.
NYSSA: [perks up] Blood? Where?
>Who gave it to you?"
>Doctor "Now I remember, you did, you refused to say why."
>Repeating the story the Doctor asks
DIANE: (Doctor) So... boxers or briefs?
NUMBER ONE (F): (Melmoth) A burlap thong, actually.
>" Alright why did you give it to me and why did you leave one
>for Susan as well?"
DOUG: (Doctor) And, while we're on the subject, why are you
wearing a tutu and a Carmen Miranda hat?
NYSSA: [smiles at DOUG and gives him a thumb's-up]
>Sitting down 'Melmoth signals for a waiter
NUMBER ONE (F): (Melmoth) Yo! Swill-slopper! Get yer
thumb outta my pate de foie gras and shake yer ass over here!
[makes two-fingered 'up-yours' sign]
>"Waiter please make my order coffee for five."
>Waiter "Yes Milord."
DOUG: (waiter) Ya want fries with that?
NUMBER ONE (F): (Melmoth) Why would I want fries with
DOUG: (waiter) Uh... you'll have to ask the manager.
DIANE: (Eric Idle) Three, sir.
>'Melmoth' "My companion will be joining us shortly."
NUMBER ONE (F): Could he mean Current Companion?
NYSSA: [looks at NUMBER ONE (F), annoyed] That was
_three_ episodes ago. Live in the _now_.
>"Melmoth' "Anyway who are you sir?"
>Jamie " He is the Doctor and I am Jamie and this is Victoria."
DIANE: (Jamie) But, we call her 'Sugarbritches'.
>Rising 'Melmoth bows to each in turn.
NUMBER ONE (F): ...then allemands left and do-si-dos.
>Doctor "Who sir are you?"
>'Melmoth' "Oh call me Melmoth"
DOUG: (Doctor) Can I call you 'Two-Sheds'?
>Doctor "You still have not answered my original question."
NUMBER ONE (F): (Doctor) If God is all-powerful, could He
create a TV show so bad that even He, Himself couldn't watch it?
DIANE: (to NUMBER ONE (F)) You've obviously never heard of
'The Facts of Life'.
>'Melmoth' "True, that's because I don't know why, this the first
>time I have met you."
>Doctor "Do you travel in time as well."
NYSSA: Perhaps if you _asked_ him, Doctor...
>'Melmoth' "Rarely, I don't have access to anything as useful as a
DIANE: (snottily) ...mirror and comb, evidently!
>Tardis. I do have a warp belt but it is only capable of short
DOUG: Is that what they make small beer out of?
OTHERS: [groan in pain]
>Doctor "How do you power it?"
>'Melmoth' "With difficulty.
NYSSA: (Victoria, snottily) Well, the Doctor can supply you
with all of _that_ you might need!
>Ah Varne how nice of you to join us." Varne "Drinking again
>'Melmoth' "Don't call me Lord Varne."
DOUG: (Varne, puzzled) I've never called you 'Lord Varne'.
>Varne "Yes Lord"
>'Melmoth' "Please sit Varne and I have ordered coffee."
NUMBER ONE (F): I've got it now. Melmoth was the bad guy
DOUG: (to NUMBER ONE (F)) No, that was 'Morgoth'.
>Varne "Thank you Sir, that's a lot healthier than what you have
>'Melmoth' "For someone who keeps claiming to be my devoted
>servant you nag a lot."
[NYSSA and DIANE both look rather pointedly at NUMBER
ONE (F), who wisely keeps her mouth shut]
>Varne "Who me Lord?"
>'Melmoth' "Please Varne call me by name not Lord."
>Varne "Sorry Sir."
DIANE: (to OTHERS) Who all thinks Varne is about to win an
all-expenses-paid trip to Bitch Slap City?
ALL: [raise hands]
>Hurriedly Victoria bursts into
NYSSA: (eagerly) ...flames?
NYSSA: (disappointed) Oh.
>" Varne how nice to meet you I am Victoria. The Doctor should
>have introduced us."
>Varne "I do apologise, no Milord should have made the
NUMBER ONE (F): (Victoria) Whatever. Want to go snog?
>Jamie "Doctor I am going to look round." Jamie leaves.
DOUG: In Doctor Who terms, that means Jamie's going off to
get himself captured by somebody.
NYSSA: (to DOUG) Not necessarily.
DOUG: (to NYSSA) Bet?
NYSSA: [considers] No.
>Waiter "Yes Milord."
DIANE: (Melmoth, annoyed) Take back this gazpacho soup.
It's ice cold!
>'Melmoth' "How long until dawn?"
DOUG: (waiter) Two-and-a-half days.
>Waiter "About twelve hours"
>Doctor "Why were you asking that?"
>'Melmoth' "Wandering around here is not save near dawn. The
>Gates draw people in.
DOUG: (Melmoth) And then it makes them use Internet Ex-
plorer as their default browser.
[The screen fades out and the lights come back on.]
TEGAN: (voice-over) Okay! Adric says you can all take a break
ALL: All right! About time! Woohoo!
NYSSA: (softly) You traitorous hussy...
[All four get up and leave the theater]