From: Wayland's Ghost <firstname.lastname@example.org> Organization: The League of Dead Scienticians Newsgroups: alt.fan.tom-servo Subject: A JMS Carol Message-ID: <3C7E77D9.email@example.com> Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2002 13:32:57 -0500 Wayland was dead, to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. Now whether that was permanent was debatable. But there in the beginning of this story, Wayland was dead. Whether JMS knew that or not is also debatable. Depending on whether or not you subscribe to the belief that he lurks on alt.fan.tom-servo. Wayland, didn't care, because he knew that JMS knew once, but had forgotten. Because, you see, Wayland would one day become JMS. Now how that came about, no one knew. Wayland had yet to experience it. And again, JMS had forgotten. Since JMS would not listen to Wayland when he was alive, Wayland thought, "Now that I'm dead, maybe I can me to listen to myself." So he came up with a plan. That night as JMS was posting to rec.arts.sf.babylon5.moderated, Wayland's Ghost possessed JMS' computer. And as JMS was replying to adoration from his fans, the screen saver cut on. Which was odd because he was in the middle of typing. And the Marquee that rolled across his screen said, "Tonight you will be visited by a ghost. (It would have been three except for budget cuts, you know how it is.) Without these visits, you cannot hope to make a decent product again. -JMS" JMS was of course terrified. He yelled, "Get the Hell out of my computer!" And all of a sudden the screen saver vanished and he was back to his post. He closed the post without responding to it and went to bed, thinking, "I am way too stressed out. I must be seeing things." The next morning at the stroke of 1, JMS woke with a start. He awoke to hear his television blasting! There on the TV was an episode of Babylon 5. He was at first confused. Then he was extremely upset. He didn't know of any station that had the rights to show Bab5 at this time of the morning, which meant he was getting no royalties for it. "I'll have to call my lawyers about this in the morning," he grumbled. He grabbed his remote and attempted to turn off the TV, but nothing happened. He tried again, but still nothing. "Stupid dead batteries," he muttered. He got up to turn off the TV, but as soon as he pushed the button, he was sucked inside. JMS looked around in amazement. There he was on Babylon 5 in Sheradin's office. And there, in Sheradin's chair, was a younger version of himself. Except, the younger version of himself was somewhat....transparent. "Hello Wayland," the younger JMS. "My name's not Wayland, its..." Wayland quickly interrupted. "I know who you are, JMS. I also know you used to be Wayland, before you traveled back in time. And of course, you don't remember." "That's ludicrous," JMS replied. "Maybe. Maybe not," the ghost followed. "But I have brought you here to prevent you from wallowing in your own mediocrity!" he continued. So he sat JMS down and on Sheradin's screen they watched all the good episodes of Babylon 5. Then the ghost chimed in, "See, you knew how to write once! You started out a little shaky in season 1, but it became an incredible show. Some of the best Sci-Fi ever on TV." JMS beamed with pride, but didn't say much still very unsure in this situation. "Now lets see what happened," the ghost continued. The ghost then showed him, the teep arc, the last couple B5 movies, all of Crusade and Legend of the Rangers. "Look at this," the ghost ranted. "This is absolutely horrible! How could you have gone from that to this?" JMS responded with, "Well TNT..." "You're going on with that TNT bull again? Look, if they were producing a flawed product, don't allow them to put your name on it!" the ghost retorted. He came back with, "And none of that explains Legend of the Rangers, did you really think that a chick shooting lasers out of her body parts was a good idea?" "Well..." JMS paused for thought, then quickly accused, "Why do you care anyway?!?" "Because, I'm not going to let mysel...YOU make such a horrible product," the ghost yelled. "Its bad for your reputation and its bad of the Sci-Fi community! If you don't work harder on your art, do you know where you'll be in a few years?" "Where?" JMS replied indignantly. "Writing for the 8th Star Trek series with Berman and Braga producing!" With that JMS sat upright in bed, sweating. After realizing where he was he chuckled and said to himself, "Its a good thing I'm an atheist. Otherwise I might have thought that ghost was real and that was more than a dream." Wayland's Ghost ...and outside the bedroom window you could hear a voice go, "Damn!"
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