"I can't believe it.....I'm dead......"
That's all Quinn Mallory could think at the moment as he watched his own funeral taking place. The gunshot wound he had received before leaving the lottery world had been fatal. Now he was laid to rest, and for some reason he could see and hear what was happening.
Wade.....Remmy.....The Professor.....and Ryan stood around his gravestone in the cemetery. The Professor leaned on the tombstone and began to speak.
"Poor Quinn Mallory......" he began. Quinn noticed Wade and Ryan were arm in arm. "He was just a boy.....so young.....but, sliding to him was like a box of matches......he opened the box, played with fire....and he got burned."
"Just like Icarus," Ryan added. "He flew too close to the sun, and it melted his wings."
"That's so beautiful Ryan!" replied Wade, as she and Ryan shared a passionate kiss.
Remmy wasn't too happy about that, saying "Q-Ball isn't even cold and she already has eyes for another man."
"Well, I think that's all we can do here," Arturo said, checking his watch. "How about we all get something to eat?"
"Sounds good to me!" said Remmy with a smile.
"Yeah, lets go," agreed Wade.
Quinn couldn't believe it, his friends were leaving like this? Didn't they care that he was dead? He shouted out to them as they left the cemetery, "Wait!.....Come Back!.....DON'T LEAVE ME!!!.....NO!!!!!!!"
Suddenly Quinn awakened to find himself lying on a cot. An IV was nearby along with some medical supplies. He was in a tent. He looked up to see Arturo and Remmy standing over him.
Arturo said "Sorry to wake you up my boy....but we slide in a few minutes.....how do you feel?"
"That if I died, no one would care," he replied. From the looks on their faces, Quinn wasn't sure he wanted to tell them about the terrible nightmare he just had. He slowly got up. His shoulder felt like hell. "How long was I out?"
"You've been in and out of consciousness for the past three days," Arturo replied.
Remmy said "Yeah, you sure gave us quite a scare man, with the bullet lodged in your shoulder. Ryan had a devil of a time getting that thing out of you."
"Where is he? I'd like to thank him for saving my life."
"I'm right here," said Ryan as he and Wade walked into the tent.
Quinn shook Ryan's hand, saying, "Thanks man.....It's a good thing you decided to slide with us. If you hadn't, I would have died."
"You're welcome. It's the least I could do for you taking me away from my world, giving me a new lease on life."
"Ryan.....I don't know if the others have discussed it with you but.....I was wondering if you would....."
"Like to keep sliding with you guys? Last night Wade, Rembrandt, the Professor and I talked it over. They sure gave a good sales pitch because I finally decided this morning......I want to go with you."
"Are you sure about this Ryan? Sliding isn't always amazing and fun, we have been to some worlds that are very dangerous."
"I know the risks, there are always risks in whatever you choose in life. I want to explore these other Earths, it's the ultimate adventure that I have been looking for. I thought that would be death when I won the Lottery, but when I went through that wormhole the first time.....I knew that this was what I had been looking for, and in return I want to help you guys get home someday."
Quinn looked at the others. They were all smiles. Quinn smiled too, saying "Then it's official, welcome aboard."
As they left the tent for the slide, Quinn asked "Say, where is Henry, the dog?"
"He ran off last night. We couldn't find him," Ryan replied.
Arturo pulled out the timer and activated the wormhole. Remmy jumped in first, followed by Arturo.
Ryan stood and looked at it. Quinn knew he was still getting used to it.
"Newbies first," Quinn offered.
Ryan turned to Quinn and laughed, then ran and jumped in. Quinn looked at Wade, who had a big smile on her face. He asked her.
"What is it?"
"I'm really glad you're all right."
Quinn smiled at Wade, and with that the two jumped into the wormhole.
The same year, the same Earth, only different dimension.
A world where the Russians rule America...
Or where your dreams of being a superstar came true...
Or where San Francisco is a maximum security prison.
These worlds do exist.
My friends and I found the gateway.
Now, if we could only find a way home...
Jerry O'Connell as Quinn Mallory
Sabrina Lloyd as Wade Welles
Cleavant Derricks as Rembrandt Brown
Nicholas Lea as Ryan Styles
John Rhys-Davies as Maximillian Arturo
"Into the Mystic"
Quinn landed with a thud on the ground, face first in a puddle of water. The landing along with the ride through the wormhole had caused his shoulder to erupt in incredibly intense pain. Quinn was in so much pain he didn't get up. As the others helped him to his feet, he looked around and saw that it was dark out, and raining.
"Oh man! We need to get him to a doctor!" said Remmy as he looked at Quinn. They could all see he was in a lot of pain.
"Where are we going to find one at this time of night? It looks dead around here," asked Wade.
"Shoulder......Shoulder....." Quinn said over and over again like a mantra. Ryan gave him support and said "Rembrandt, there's a phone booth right over there, see if you can find a doctor in the phone book, and hurry!"
Remmy ran to the phone, as Arturo helped Ryan hold Quinn up, saying "Hang in there my boy."
Remmy flipped through the phone book's yellow pages at lightning speed. He noticed a lot of things relating to a Sorcerer, and at last an ad for a Doctor Xang whose practice was nearby. He yelled out "Found one!" and quickly dialed the number.
Ten minutes later the five of them were in Doctor Xang's waiting room. The nurse at the desk said, "The doctor is meditating in his chambers right now. I'll go get him, while you..." she turned to Arturo, handing him a large bundle of papers, "...fill out these forms."
Arturo, Remmy and Ryan exchanged looks of doom at the pile of forms. As the nurse left, Arturo remarked, "You know, there is one constant thing about all the Americas we slide to."
"What's that?" asked Ryan.
"The health care system always sucks." Remmy replied.
Later on, the nurse led Quinn, with Remmy at his side, into the doctor's room. Meanwhile, in the waiting room, Arturo struggled to fill out the forms, as Wade and Ryan looked around the room.
Arturo asked Wade, "Has Quinn ever had the chicken pox?"
"I'm not sure. I think so."
"I'll put down a yes."
"Hey guys, take a look at this stuff."
Ryan and Arturo joined Wade as she showed them a bizarre eye chart.
"It looks like an eye chart, but I'm not familiar with the alphabet," said Arturo.
"I am," Wade replied. "It's the witches' alphabet. My friend Sabrina was into this stuff."
"I thought that looked familiar, I learned about this kind of stuff during my travels across the world," said Ryan.
Arturo then noticed Doctor Xang's medical diploma hanging on the wall. As he read it out loud, he began to realize something. "Good heavens! Do you realize what we've done! We have delivered Quinn into the hands of a Witch Doctor!"
At that moment they heard screams coming from the other room as Xang worked on Quinn. Ryan and Arturo exchanged looks and decided to go up there, but the nurse stepped in front of them, holding them back.
Just as they were about to push her aside, Quinn, Remmy and Xang emerged.
"Are you all right?" Wade asked.
"Of course he is, I obliterated his headache." said Xang.
"Headache! He has a gunshot wound in his shoulder!" Arturo bellowed.
"I can't help you there, I don't do shoulders."
"The Sorcerer may help you, but he won't see you, you could try his herbal medicine and...." the nurse started, but Xang cut her off.
"I told you not to mention that name in here! You know how I feel about him!"
"Who is this Sorcerer?" Ryan asked.
"A charlatan who has stolen more than half of my patients. Now pay your bill and leave!" he then took Wade by the hand and smiled. "But you may stay if you wish, my dear." He was obviously coming on to Wade, which Ryan and Quinn didn't like one bit.
Remmy looked at the bill and his eyes went wide.
"$226 for a headache!?!?"
"Actually, guys, I do feel better," Quinn admitted.
"That's beside the point!" Wade replied. "We don't have that much money."
"So what are we going to do?" asked Ryan.
Arturo motioned to them and the five of them formed a huddle.
"Given the fraudulent nature of this man's claims, I suggest a response that harkens back to our childhoods.......RUN!! RUN LIKE HELL!!!"
As the Sliders tore out of the place, Doctor Xang yelled at them, vowing he would get compensation.
Later that night at the Dominion Hotel, Wade gave Quinn another massage for his shoulder, Remmy and Ryan started to watch TV, while Arturo started to read a book.
"The first thing you always do in every hotel we check into is turn on the TV Remmy." Wade says.
"What better way to learn about a another earth's culture than by watching TV?"
"Sounds good to me," said Ryan. "Say, that guy looks familiar." Ryan pointed to an ad with Ross J. Kelley, who was a lawyer on this earth as well.
"Demons harrassing you? Knocking on your door demanding payments? Well call me, Ross J. Kelley, and I'll get those guys OFF YOUR BACK!"
Remmy laughed. "That guy is a sleazy lawyer no matter what universe he's in."
As Remmy flipped through the channels, they see nothing but more ads for products from the Sorcerer, including Sorcerer Steak Sauce and Sorcerer Toothpaste.
"Sorcerer this, Sorcerer that," Ryan said. "Whoever this guy is, he's got a monopoly on just about everything."
"Yeah, I'd like to have a piece of his action," replied Remmy.
Later that night as the Sliders tried to get some sleep, Arturo was awakened to creaking noises from behind the door of their hotel room. He awakened the others saying, "Rembrandt...Quinn....Ryan.....There's someone coming...."
Wade also got up and the five of them approached the door slowly. Ryan grabbed a broom from the closet as a weapon.
"Just in case," he told them.
Arturo nodded and opened the door. In the doorway stood a Grim Reaper. He shuffled in, pointing a finger at Quinn. Quinn pointed to himself, to which the Reaper handed him something, then turned and left.
Arturo and Ryan quickly shut the door behind him.
"What is it?" Wade asked.
Quinn reads it, and with a shocked look on his face, replied: "It's a subpoena....I'm being sued!"
The next morning, Quinn and Wade went to visit Ross J. Kelley in the hopes that the lawyer could help him, but to their dismay he told them, "I'm sorry, there isn't much I can do for you."
"But in your TV ad you said you could get those guys off our back. You said off our back!" Wade accused.
"The problem is, you walked out on paying a fee to a shaman. I mean, didn't you read the fine print before you signed those forms? Doctor Xang has now filed for Retribution Compensation, which means he gets his choice of one of your body parts for his experiments if you default......and he wants YOUR brain," he said, pointing to Quinn.
"There has to be something we can do!" Quinn objected.
"The only person who can help you now is the Sorcerer, but he wouldn't see you. If I were you, I'd stay out of sight and off the streets, every demon bounty hunter in the city is on the lookout for you. Good luck, kid." And with that Kelley left.
Arturo, Ryan and Remmy walked up, with Remmy asking "So what's the verdict?"
"Big trouble. Come on," said Wade.
As they walked downtown in San Francisco, Ryan noticed some huge, dark looking figures looking around. They obviously were not friendly.
"Guys," he said, "we've got company behind us."
"Great, now what?" said Quinn.
Just then they walked past a tent of a fortune teller, she came out and said.
"Quickly, come inside before they see you!"
Without hesitation the group entered the tent. The fortune teller told them, "I have been expecting you. Sit down. I'll give you five a free reading. If there were ever five people in desperate need of one, it's you."
She pulled out a deck of tarot cards and started to lay them out in front of them.
"It must be hard on you, being so far away from home, away from your family and loved ones."
Arturo scoffed at this, muttering "Oh please," but the others listened to what she was saying.
"Danger is all around you. Only by sticking together will you survive."
"Could you maybe...be a bit more specific?" asked Arturo mockingly.
"Professor! Don't be rude," Wade admonished.
"Oh please. Are any of you actually buying into this? This whole thing is a sham," Arturo said to the others.
"I know you're a non-believer.....you resent the boy here," she pointed to Quinn. "Because it comes so easy to him, and because he reminds you of the son you neglected back home."
The others were shocked and looked at Arturo. He kept his composure as he replied, "Now madam, if you really want to impress me....tell us one thing we do not already know."
"Your only hope is to seek out the Sorcerer.....but you must hurry.....because soon he will go SLIDING."
Everyone jumped when she said this.
Quinn said "Sliding!?"
"Yes....he has the magic to travel between worlds....trust in him....for he has the power to send you back home."
The five of them left the fortune teller and immediately began looking for a taxi. Quinn was so excited he looked like he was going to explode.
"This is fantastic! The Sorcerer is a slider!"
"Yes, indeed," replied Arturo. "We must find him and introduce ourselves. If he can control the slide...it's very possible he can send us home."
"Home! I can hardly believe it!" Wade said.
The only one who wasn't as excited was Ryan, and Remmy was the first to notice.
"Hey Ryan, we almost forgot. How do you feel about all of this?"
The others stopped, and turned to Ryan as he spoke. "I'm really happy for you guys, if this turns out to be true. Besides...where you go, I go. I can't wait to see what your world is like. And when the day comes that Quinn and the Professor can control sliding.....I'll be the first person ready to jump back into that vortex and see what's out there."
Quinn put a hand on Ryan's shoulder, smiled and said, "Thanks man. Even though you've only been with us a short time.....You're already one of us."
"Thanks Quinn....that means a lot. Now, lets go see the Sorcerer.
20 minutes later, thanks to Pavel Kurlienko, who was on every world they had seen him, a taxi driver, they found themselves standing before the Golden Gargoyle Gate Bridge. On the other side lay the Sorcerer's castle. After crossing the bridge, and solving the illusion of its seeming invisibility, they found themselves in an enormous waiting room with a young man sitting behind a desk.
"Can I help you?"
"Yes," said Quinn. "We would like to see the Sorcerer."
Four hours later, the five of them were still sitting in the waiting room. Remmy and Ryan walked around, Quinn sat trying to stay patient, while Wade and Arturo read some magazines about the Sorcerer.
"What is taking so long?" asks Ryan. "We've been here for hours."
"I don't mind, as long as I'm in here I'm safe from those demons."
"Oh come now, Mr. Mallory...."
"It's not your brain they're after, Professor."
"Amazing," Wade said as she read, "the Sorcerer has all the employees who work here in the castle live here. They never leave. He has products all over the globe, and he's filthy rich."
"Yes, and that is the heart of the puzzle. We have a world enthralled with the occult. At the same time it's under the thumb of a giant, global business conglomerate. A interesting combination."
Just as he finished, a man walked up to them. "I'm Mr. Gale, the Sorcerer's chief aide. I'm sorry to tell you that he won't be able to see you. My apologies."
"What?" said Wade.
"Sir, we have come a long way to see him."
"I'm sure you have, but I can't help you."
Just as he was about to leave, Quinn shouted, "The Einstein-Rosen-Podolsky Bridge! We crossed it! We have the ability to travel between universes! We're Sliders!"
This got Mr. Gale's attention, but before he could respond, a loud, deep voice that seemed to be everywhere said, "BRING THEM TO ME!"
"This way," said Mr. Gale.
He led the Sliders into an imposing chamber. After he shut the door, a huge floating apparition of a man appeared before them.
"I AM THE SORCERER. FOR CENTURIES I HAVE TRAVELED FROM WORLD TO WORLD ACROSS THE MULTIVERSE. WHO ARE YOU MORTALS? FRIENDS? OR FOES?"
"Friends, definitely!" said Remmy, who along with the others was a little afraid.
"We need your help. We're lost in the interdimension. We heard you have the power to get us back to our home world," said Quinn.
"INTERESTING," the Sorcerer replied. "BUT DON'T ASK WHAT I CAN DO FOR YOU.......ASK WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR ME......"
"Blueprints? What would he want with some blueprints Dr. Xang has?" asks Ryan as the five of them walked across the bridge back into San Francisco.
"It doesn't matter," Arturo replied. "I don't know if we can trust the Sorcerer. We're just going to lay low and slide out of here in..."
As Quinn walked ahead of them, he suddenly ran into a dwarf, with a sawed off shotgun pointed at Quinn's chest.
"Uh.....Professor.....I think it's a little late for that......"
"Well, well..." said the bounty hunter. "Looked what the black cat dragged in."
Soon Quinn was strapped down on Dr. Xang's operating table. As he was about to cut Quinn's skull open, the others arrived.
"Stop! Don't do it!" said Wade.
"I must have my compensation, my dear. His brain is magnificent. It will sit in my collection next to the brain of our beloved ex-President, Ed Wood Jr."
"Please!....take me instead."
"Wade! No!" said Ryan.
"You offer yourself to me?"
With Wade distracting Dr. Xang, Remmy made a move and grabbed the shotgun from the bounty hunter.
"Deceitful witch!" Xang shrieked.
"Now you two get the hell out of here before these two bullets find themselves in you!" said Remmy.
As Wade and Ryan untied Quinn, he said "We have to find the blueprints, they may be the only thing that can get us home."
They searched his store room, and Arturo found them first. As Arturo looked them over he said, "Gentlemen....these are the plans for building a Sliding machine."
"Why would Xang want one?" Remmy asked.
"To cut into the Sorcerer's market share. Remember how much he hates him?" Ryan replies.
"Let's get these to the Sorcerer. We slide in a few hours."
Suddenly, a venomous snake appeared, and Remmy quickly shot it.
"Mr. Brown, that was very probably someone's pet."
As they left, Xang came at Quinn and Wade with a giant knife. Remmy used the shotgun to parry the knife, while Ryan punched Xang unconscious.
"And that was the pet's somebody," said Ryan, which got a good laugh from Remmy and Arturo.
The Sliders raced back to the Sorcerer's castle, where Quinn handed the blueprints back to Mr. Gale.
"We did it Mr. Gale, we got the blueprints."
"Excellent...you will be hearing from the Sorcerer in about... a week."
"A week! We only have a few hours left on this world!" said Remmy.
"He promised us he'd help us as soon as we got back!" said Wade.
"I'm sorry, but he isn't seeing anyone right now...if you will just wait I'll...."
Quinn didn't feel like waiting. He grabbed the blueprints and raced up to the Sorcerer's chamber. He went in and noticed a small door behind him. He went inside, with the giant Sorcerer image powerlessly screaming "NO! STAY BACK!"
Quinn found himself in a giant lab filled with sliding equipment, and sitting at a control console, a double of Quinn! Sorcerer Quinn had long hair, wore glasses and was dressed all in black. He got up and stared in awe at Quinn.
"Of course! I knew it!"
"Amazing!" said Sorcerer Quinn. "It's like....looking into a living mirror.....I wanted to go out and meet you and your friends in person when you first arrived, but....Mr. Gale advised me not to and....I was too ashamed at what I've become."
Just them Mr. Gale and some guards appeared behind Quinn.
"I'm sorry sir....I didn't know that....."
"He tried to stop us giving these to you. We got you the blueprints back."
Quinn gave them to his double. As he looked them over he suddenly realized something.
"Gale, these are your initialed copies! How did Dr. Xang get these?"
"Sir....I....I can explain...."
"So can I. How could you double-cross me after all these years! I trusted you!.....Guards...escort Mr. Gale out of the castle and across the bridge....he has been fired."
"No! Quinn!....Lets talk about this!"
"And notify the bounty hunters!"
"NO! You can't do this!....After all my years of faithful service! I MADE YOU! I MADE YOU!" he screamed as the guards dragged him away.
"Sorry about all this," said Sorcerer Quinn "I think it's time I helped you and your friends get home."
A few hours later, the rest of the Sliders sat in Sorcerer Quinn's lab, as he worked on the timer and Quinn and Arturo looked over his calculations.
"So why did you become the Sorcerer?" Wade asked.
"When I first slid onto this world I sensed it had great business potential. For years Dr. Xang and others like him held the people hostage with their potions and voodoo magic. I had all these great products from other Earths, but I couldn't get the shelf space. So I met Mr. Gale and he helped me come up with the idea for the Sorcerer trademark and....the whole thing took off...and....."
"You became a prisoner of your own success."
"In a way, aren't we all? Mr. Gale convinced me that if this world found out the Sorcerer was just a man, the empire would collapse.......My other self is so vital...he's living his life.....It's what I'm going to do from now on.....It's a liberation for which I can never repay you...but I'll try....by sending you home."
Wade smiled, and gave Sorcerer Quinn a kiss on the cheek.
"So how about it guys, is this going to work or what?" Remmy asked Quinn and Arturo.
"My double has an interesting take on the Sliding process....." He and Arturo began to talk in scientific terms that made Remmy's head ache.
"Come on guys, how about English?"
"Think of the a giant roulette wheel," Quinn tried. "The problem is pinpointing the correct slot that matches the coordinates for our home earth."
"So there is a chance?"
"Yes," said Arturo. "There is simultaneously an absolutely positive chance and a high improbability that it will work."
"Sounds like decent odds to me," Ryan said.
"Quinn? I'm all finished here." said Sorcerer Quinn.
"All right guys....lets do it."
Sorcerer Quinn activated the timer and the vortex appeared, tethered to his sliding machine which would act as the director for the slide.
"If this doesn't work, at least we won't be any worse off than when we started," said Quinn as they got ready.
"Come on guys...I want to go home."
"Say a prayer for us," said Remmy as he shook Sorcerer Quinn's hand.
"You have a good heart Mr. Brown, and so do you Mr.Styles, along with great courage..." He shook Ryan's hand. "Good luck to you."
As the others said goodbye to and thanked him, Quinn was the last to leave.
"As for you...." said Sorcerer Quinn with a smile.
"I know brother....I owe you my brain!"
The Sliders found themselves in front of Quinn's house on the next world.
"Your house Q-Ball....are we home?"
"We'll find out soon," Quinn answered.
"Here's a newspaper," said Ryan, handing it to Remmy, who perused the headlines.
Quinn checked the timer, and quickly said "Bad news, guys. 53 seconds to the next window. If this isn't home, we're stuck."
"The Raiders went back to Oakland? OJ Simpson tried for a double murder?! The Cleveland Indians made the World Series?!"
"A lot could have happened while we were gone," pleaded Wade.
"That much?" countered Arturo.
"Okay, this gate has been squeaking since I was a kid...." said Quinn. He dramatically swing open the gate....and it didn't squeak. Dejected, the sliders moved away from the house.
"I'm sorry, guys," said Ryan. "I really hoped this was your world."
"Thanks Ryan.....we'll just have to keep looking...." said Quinn.
"And keep the faith." Remmy finished.
Quinn activated the wormhole, and the others slid out, with Quinn taking one last look at the house before he followed.
After they left, Mrs. Mallory and Jake the gardener came out the front door.
"I trimmed the hedges and watered the lawn," said Jake. "Oh, and let me show you what I did with the gate." He swung it back and forth a couple times. "All it needed was a little oil."
"Quinn always said he was going to fix it," said Mrs. Mallory, her voice faltering.
"I know how much you miss him, Mrs. M," consoled Jake. "But he'll be back one day. I know he will."
Mrs. Mallory silently nodded and went back inside.
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