The sign outside the shop read "Small Wonders"

A blonde woman was talking on the phone. "...No, no, I think you're confusing us with the occult book store that used to be near here on St. Mark's Place. Yeah, sorry about that."

She ended the call and turned back to her current customer. "Sorry about that--so you're interested in the Mary-Mary doll?"

In front of her was a doll with strawberry blonde hair with a yellow bow and a ponytail on the left side of her head, wearing a blue dress with yellow trim. Her button eyes were mismatched--the left one was pink, the right one was green. She had a broad smile and little black Mary Jane shoes.

"I'm looking for something to give my stepdaughter." the woman on the other side of the counter answered. "She's such a brat I'm hoping it'll scare the living hell out of her...maybe even her bitch mother too."

Charming the blonde shopkeeper thought to herself. "Well, I gotta admit, when it comes to creepy dolls you've come to the right place."

"I've never seen anything like this." the customer nodded. "Where do you get them from?"

"Trade secret." the shopkeeper smiled.

"Okay, I get it." the customer chuckled. "I'll take it!"

A few minutes later, the customer and Mary-Mary were gone. The shopkeeper exhaled, and then startled.

Sitting in the exact spot that Mary-Mary had previously occupied was another doll. One with strawberry blonde hair with a blue bow and a ponytail on the right side of her head, wearing a yellow dress with blue trim. Her button eyes were mismatched--the right one was pink, the left one was green. She had a broad smile and little black Mary Jane shoes.

"Jesus, I wish this place would stop doing that!!!"


By Fritz Baugh with EGB Fan
GBI Case File GBNY-2021-39/411

In 1983, three unemployed scientists started up the world's first agency of professional paranormal investigators and eliminators. Now, thirty-eight years later, Dr. Johnathan Spengler, Dr. Eden Spengler, Eric Stantz, Marie Lupin, and TJ Anderson hunt strange things in the neighborhood, weird things that don't look good, things running through people's head, and invisible men sleeping in beds as the newest generation of Ghostbusters.

Three of them have literally grown up in the former Hook and Ladder No. 8 firehouse; but even they realize they still have a lot to learn from those that came before.

Ghostbusters New York Headquarters
Varrick and Moore
July 2021
Ghostbuster Omnibus Timeline Year Thirty-Nine
"Which one's my fellow Londoner?" asked Hayden Wallance, his eyes darting between TJ Anderson and Marie Lupin.

"Can't you guess?" said Marie.

"Not just by looking," said Hayden. Then he turned to TJ. "It isn't her, so it must be you."

"Hello," said TJ, smiling and extending her hand to him. "Tessa Jane Anderson."

"Ah, the sound of home!" said Hayden, as he accepted her handshake.

"You can go back if you don't like it here," said Jessica Venkman. "Nobody asked you to come."

"I do like it here," Hayden said to her. "I like it wherever you are -- you know that."

"Is she the only reason you're here?" asked Marie.

"Yes," said Hayden.

"That's a bit personal, isn't it?" TJ said admonishingly. Then, without waiting for a reply, she returned her attention to her fellow countryman. "They said you were from Chelsea, and that's how Eden was able to be rather eerily accurate about where I was from, which is also Chelsea, as it turns out."

"I'd heard that," said Hayden, "but I didn't just take their word for it. You must know what they're like: they think the home counties are part of London and Scotland's part of England."

Jessica rolled her eyes at him, then made herself comfortable on the couch beside Marie and said confidingly, "That's the one thing he'll get mad at me about. I can be as unreasonable as I want and he just takes it, but if I do something like include Karen Gillan in a conversation about English actors, I'm in trouble."

"Sounds like a healthy relationship," Marie said with a wry smile.

Jessica laughed at that. "Oh, it's completely messed up. Did you know we share a half-brother?"

"I've heard something about it."

"He's my brother, really," Jessica went on, a distinct edge coming into her voice. "He grew up with me, and he thinks of my dad as his dad."

"Okay," Marie said placatingly, and Jessica laughed again.

"Like I said, completely messed up."

"But the sex is good, though, right?"

"If the sex wasn't good," said Jessica, "I wouldn't be marrying him."

She said this totally without hesitation, and Marie was delighted. At last, in this place, she sensed a kindred spirit.

"Yeah?" She shifted on the couch to make herself more comfortable. "What exactly is so good about it?"

Jessica thought, searching for the right answer to this important question, while TJ and Hayden stuck to the topic of their shared local geography.

"Egerton Gardens," TJ said, when asked precisely where in Chelsea she had lived. "It's off Brompton Road, at the V&A Museum end."

"Oh, the V&A," said Hayden. "Then you probably know Sloane Avenue?"

"Yes, of course."

"And you know how it branches off into that rabbit warren of smaller roads?"

"Oh, yes -- all those beautiful Georgian terraces!" said TJ, smiling at the familiar vision of home.

"That's it," said Hayden. "I grew up in one of them."

"How lovely."

"You must've been somewhere nice, too. It's all very nice and bourgeois round there, isn't it?"

"Yes, I suppose it is," said TJ. "I grew up in a flat in one of those converted Victorian terraces."

Hayden nodded. "I know the sort of thing you mean." Then a thought came to him, and he went on, "We weren't too far apart at all, were we? I wonder if we went to the same school."

"Well," said TJ, "I just went up the road to primary school. So did you, probably."

"Yes," said Hayden. "Well, down the road really, away from Brompton Road."

"And then I went to a private secondary school."

"So did I."

"Saint Susanna's."

"No! Me too!"

He seemed perfectly delighted with the coincidence. TJ could not bring herself to feel quite that enthusiastic, but she was certainly struck by it, and interested in the connection.

"How funny," she said. "Maybe we passed each other in the corridors. What year were you in?"

"I left in 2012. After sixth form."

"We might well have brushed shoulders, then. I finished my A levels in 2016."

Hayden furrowed his brow in thought. "2016... that means... wait a minute... yes, it does! You were in my sister's year!"

"No!" This time, TJ really was amazed. "What's her name?"

"Emilia Wallance."

"Hmm... she couldn't have been in my form group or my main teaching group, then. I'd remember a name like that."

"I should say so," said Hayden, wincing a little. "It's a bloody curse. Nobody else in England is called Wallance! Mind you," he added, "I shouldn't complain -- I got off lightly with Hayden. My brother's name is Lars."

"A brother as well," said TJ, politely not commenting on the name. "You used all of that Georgian house, then."

"Yes. Well... sort of. My mum likes to keep the ground floor looking immaculate, so it hardly gets used."

TJ nodded. "I know what you mean. I've been in a few friends' houses like that. All the activity went on in the kitchen-diner."

"In the basement," added Hayden.

"Of course," said TJ. This, she had supposed, was taken as read.

"That's normal, isn't it?"

"Gosh, yes, it's the most normal thing in the world."

"Or at least in the posh part of London," said Hayden, smiling. "They don't seem to have basement kitchens round here. Jess was quite rude about ours, actually."

In fact, Jessica had been so struck by the Wallances' (perfectly ordinary) basement kitchen that it had entered into her conversation with Marie.

"They told me it was really common," she was saying. "From the days of servants below stairs, you know? I guess it makes sense. I thought it was weird. But anyway, at the back there's a small TV room with a pull-out couch and a shower room off it, and we slept down there, and there was a whole floor between us and his parents. So that's why the noise wasn't an issue."

"You hope," said Marie.

"He hopes," said Jessica. "I really don't care."

Marie laughed delightedly at that, while Hayden and TJ came back to the topic of Saint Susanna's School, Chelsea, SW3.

"You must've known my sister a bit in sixth form," Hayden was saying. "Everyone knows each other in sixth form."

"I must have at least seen her wandering about in the sixth form block, mustn't I?" said TJ. "What does she look like?"

"Well." Hayden considered. "She looks like my sister: blond hair, blue eyes, that kind of thing. Oh, and she'd have been carrying a clarinet about with her most days. She was in the school orchestra."

"Oh," said TJ, "now you're talking! Blonde girl with a clarinet... 'my father plays first violin for the LSO'..."

"That'll be her," said Hayden. "No other girl's father does that." He paused, then asked haltingly, "Did... she say things like that often?"

"I don't know," said TJ. Then, sensing his discomfiture, she added, "Hardly ever, probably. She and I really didn't have much to do with each other. I wasn't remotely interested in the school orchestra, and I don't suppose she was particularly interested in the tennis team."

"Oh, you were on the tennis team? St. Susie's generally did pretty well at tennis, didn't it?"

"I don't know about that. They used to talk about the wins in assembly, but not the losses. We did all right, though. It was just a bit of fun for me, really -- not like your sister with her clarinet."

"Oh, she wasn't really serious about that," said Hayden. "She gave it up after she left school."

"Were you in the school orchestra as well?" asked TJ. It was a casual question, put to someone who was clearly from a musical family, so she was taken aback when Hayden found it laugh-out-loud funny.

"Me?" he said. "God, no -- I stopped bothering after grade one piano. I was in a few school productions, though. Just for the fun of it. I suppose you might've seen me, come to think of it."

"I didn't go to see those, but I did get taken to watch a couple of rehearsals -- you know, when the English and drama teachers were too busy with it to bother with their lessons?" She thought for a moment, then said, "If you're four years older than me, that must have been just the right time for my class to see you rehearse. What were you in?"

"Well," said Hayden, "I had at least a small role most years I was there. Let's see... you must've been in year nine when I played the lead in Little Shop of Horrors."

"Oh, yes!" said TJ, the memory coming to her suddenly, as clear as a bell. "I remember that song about trying to get the plant to grow. That was you, wasn't it?"

"I'm afraid so."

"Don't say that -- I enjoyed it. We all did. When you found out the plant wanted to drink your blood, you were really funny."

"Oh, thanks," said Hayden, smiling bashfully. "What a lovely thing to say."

"He makes me laugh, too," Jessica was telling Marie. "He's funny. And he calms me down when I need it. It's not all about the sex."

"Pity," said Marie jokingly. "Nah, like you said, you wouldn't be marrying him if it was."

"And what about you?" said Jessica. "There's more to you than that, right?"

"You think so?"

"Don't take this the wrong way, but there kind of has to be."

"Well," said Marie, smiling enigmatically, "maybe a little. And there's more to you than being one of a pair, I guess?"

"Oh, God, yes!" said Jessica. "I am not half a person!"

"Whoa," said Marie, raising her hands in a defensive gesture. "I didn't mean anything by it. I know it was me who wanted to talk about you and him."

"That's right, it was," said Jessica.

"Do we need to get him over here to calm you down?"

"No." She relaxed again, smiled sheepishly and said, "Sorry. That's why I always said I was never gonna get married: it's this idea that you're somehow incomplete if you're single, or you have to want what's conventional, you know?"

"I do know, believe me," said Marie. "So, you just couldn't help falling in love, huh? He is cute." She brushed love aside for the moment and looked appraisingly at Hayden, as he and TJ tried to discover which teachers they'd had in common. "Not hot, but definitely cute. And you're not bad either, from what little I can see under that skater boy get-up. But, y'know, it's your attitude that really makes you sexy."

Jessica, at last, seemed taken aback. "I... thanks?"

"I know you're monogamous and everything," Marie went on, "but if you guys ever feel like trying a threesome, you only have to ask."

This raised an eyebrow. "Are you being serious, or are you just trying to see if you can shock me?"

"Take me up and find out."

"Well," said Jessica, "I'm not shocked, but I won't be taking you up on that offer."

"Hey, now," said Marie, grinning broadly. "Never say never."

Jessica shook her head. "Never. I like guys. That's always guys, and only guys. But, y'know, thanks all the same."

Marie rolled her eyes with a slight smirk. "Once again...pity."

Ghostbusters International Headquarters
Thirtieth Street and Seventh Avenure
The Boogeyman popped out from behind a corner.

Johnathan Christopher Spengler snarled. He knew this guy's story quite well. Hid in the closets of kids all over the world--including, in the 1960's, the closet of a guy named Egon Spengler, or as John knew him, "Pop".

And now he was after John.

John drew a bead, thumbed the trigger of his neutrona blaster, sending out a beam of energy...

...that missed.

A loud alarm sounded.

"Looks like you just got slimed or worse, Juan." a Spanish-accented voice called out of the darkness.

"Crumbs." John grumbled. The lights came up.

The "Boogeyman" wasn't actually the fear-eating entity that took the original Ghostbusters three tries to finally put away for good--he was still securely sealed in Ghostbusters New York's basement Containment Unit--but a paper cutout.

And John wasn't actually holding a Mark 5 Neutrona Wand either--it was a prop designed to send out harmless laser light, little more than the toys that became very trendy about the time the original Ghostbusters were the sensation of the 1980's.

"I'll give you this, Juan..." the test conductor continued, stepping out of the practice range's control booth. " didn't fail as hard as your sister or Rico did."

Eduardo Rivera, a forty-three year old man of Mexican ancestry, had recently been named the new director of GBI training programs after nearly a quarter century in the field--he'd literally been busting ghosts before John Spengler was born.

"Yeah, why aren't TJ and Marie here in this little paper doll show, Eddie?"

"La Chica Lobo and TeJota aced the marksmanship drills when they were hired, Amigo. Maria's actually a better shot than I am, even after I had to dock some points for her shooting every target in the cojones. And I guess all that cop training did TeJota some good in that regard; I didn't think British cops were even allowed to know what guns are."

"I bet she set you right on that." John smirked. He knew "La Chica Lobo" and "Maria" meant Marie Lupin, while "TeJota" was TJ Anderson.

"Ay caramba..." Eduardo rolled his eyes.

"Rico" and John's sister--meaning fellow newly-inducted Ghostbusters Eric Stantz and Eden Marie Spengler--came out from the control room. "I know that hurts you to admit, Eduardo." Eric noted. "We know how you feel about cops."

"Yeah, yeah, but like I said, British cops don't have guns givin'em a superiority complex." Eduardo said. "You guys about ready to head back to the Firehouse?"

"Yes." Eden nodded. "I do appreciate your efforts, Eduardo. I can already see the improvement in my marksmanship scores already."

"I'll get there..." Eric gestured. "I'm a pretty good shot with a Pilum of Fire, how much harder can a proton beam be?"

"According to your scores, Rico, a lot harder." Eduardo chuckled, slapping Eric on the back. "C'mon...we can hit the Krazy's on the way back..."

"Mystery Clown Spices! All right!!!" Eric responded excitedly.

Ghostbusters Central
"...Filed by a combination of franchise code, year, and a two-part case number that derives from GBI's year of business and another number that, frankly, I sometimes assigned at random..."

"Okay, okay..." Jeremy Cranston nodded, looking a little frazzled. "One thing at a time, Mrs. Spengler!"

Janine Melnitz Spengler, Client Administration Director Emeritus of Ghostbusters International, gave him a slight smirk. "Sorry. I know it's a lot to take in."

"No, no...I mean, at least you have a system." Jeremy shook his head. "When I was first hired for the Institute, I had to deal with Kevin Beckman's filing system--which was just random piles wherever he felt like it. And occasional paper airplanes stuck in the ventilation system." Jeremy sighed. "Dr. Yates said she would've fired Kevin years ago if Dr. Gilbert didn't like him so much."

Janine chuckled. "Yeah, I've heard that one before..."

The phone started ringing.

"Huh?" Jeremy looked confused.

"I think this is the part where you answer it, Kiddo."

"Oh yeah..." Jeremy chuckled uncomfortably, then cleared his throat. ", Ghostbusters International, New York office, Jeremy speaking. How may I help you today?"

"Okay, you and Hayden are off limits, no problem." Marie looked at Jessica mischievously. "So introduce me to your hot rock star brother, instead!"

Jessica laughed. "Oh boy, I'll warn you, Oscar's got some issues in this area. I mean, sometimes I think the right person for him is Danny, Mood Slime's drummer."

"You haven't said anything I find deal-breaking yet." Marie shrugged.

Jessica rolled her eyes. "Geez...ten minutes with you and Charlene will never complain about me again."

"Charlene, wait, I know I've heard of her, she's..."

They were interrupted by the fire alarm.

"Sounds like duty calls." Jessica noted.

TJ sprinted into the room, Hayden close behind. "I think we have to cut this short, don't we?" She nodded at Jessica and Hayden both. "Pleasure meeting you both. I hope we can continue some other time."

"Indeed." Hayden nodded back.

After the two Ghostbusters left, Jessica turned to Hayden. "So what do you think?"

"A bit stuffy for my liking." Hayden answered. "But I think hanging around with this lot will cure that."

Marie zipped up her flight suit as TJ examined the printout Jeremy gave her. "You do realize that the ECTO-1 isn't here, right? Old Man Eddie and the others took it."

Jeremy looked panicked for a second. "Oh shit...I forgot...I..."

Janine gestured with her phone. "Just called Eden--they're almost here with it now."

"We are once more in your debt, Mrs. Spengler." TJ said, zipping her flight suit.

"No big deal, Kiddo." Janine nodded. "And I told you to call me Janine."

The ECTO-1's horn honked from outside the garage.

"Grab the packs and meet them out there!" Janine told them.

TJ and Marie nodded, and proceeded to do just that.

Twenty Minutes Later
The ECTO-1, latest in the line of familiar vehicles used by the Ghostbusters for almost forty years, pulled up to a nondescript brownstone.

A Ford Crown Victoria, also in Ghostbuster colors, pulled in behind it.

Eric got out of the ECTO's driver seat; John, Eden, TJ, and Marie got out of the other doors, and John opened the back of the car to allow access to the proton packs.

Eduardo got out of the Crown Vic--one of the small fleet of Ecto-Cruisers that had become known throughout GBI since the first ones were introduced by the LA franchise in 2007.

"So what are you doing tagging along, Eddie?" Eric asked.

"You guys are technically still probationary 'Busters, Rico." Eduardo answered. "As training director it's my duty to see how you handle field work, and intervene if necessary."

"You gotta be kidding..." John muttered.

"It's not an unreasonable idea." TJ countered.

"We've only been around this stuff..." Eric started to say.

"...Since you were kids, yeah, I know, I was there." Eduardo nodded. "But I ain't signin' off on you guys 'til I see you handle a job yourselves."

"Then watch us operate." John smirked.

"Don't say stuff like that, Johnny." Marie quipped. "Next thing you know you'll step in a pothole or something."

"There they are!" a woman's voice shouted. A couple and a little girl ran up to them. "The Ghostbusters! We're so glad you're here!"

"I take it you were the ones who called us?" TJ asked.

"Yes." the man of the couple nodded.

"So what's the nature of your...erm., difficulty?"

Beside TJ, John had taken out his experimental GBX and Eden the proven Model 3.2 PKE Meter.

"Mary-Mary said she's gonna kill me!!!" the little girl piped up.

" 'Mary-Mary'?" Eric asked.

"That damn doll I bought yesterday." the woman shook her head. "It came to life and started threatening us all!"

"There's definitely something here." Eden noted. "But I'm having trouble locking onto it."

"Same." John nodded.

TJ mused for a moment. "Where did you buy this item?"

"The Small Wonders shop down on St. Mark's Place." the woman shook her head. "I just wanted it for a gag--never thought it was even creepier than it looked."

Eduardo just watched.

"Just one doll?" John asked.

The woman nodded.

"But it's got a sickle!" the man added.

Marie grinned mischievously. "And here I left my baseball bat full of nails at home..."

"First rule of Ghostbusting is never go alone." John noted. "But there's five of us here--I think..." he paused for a second. "TJ, you're the detective; Eden, you know the paranormal and the city. You two head to this shop to make sure there's nothing else going on here."

"Um...but that'll leave you without the car..." Eden pointed out.

John looked at Eduardo. "Hey, Teach, can Eden and TJ borrow your Cruiser?"

Eduardo mocked horror for a few seconds. "Well, okay, since it's Eden. If it was you no way--I know how you drive, Juan." He held out the keys. Eden grabbed them.

"I'm not licensed yet in the States." TJ noted. "You lot drive on the wrong side of the bloody road anyway."

"But that's what we say about you." John quipped back. Eric and Marie glanced at each other, rolling their eyes.

"Any comments, Eddie?" Eric asked.

"Nope." Eduardo shook his head. "We'll have to see how it works out." He pulled his own proton pack out of the Cruiser before Eden and TJ left.

"Playtime!" Marie smiled, as the three rookie Ghostbusters moved toward the brownstone's door.

"Low power until we know what we're dealing with." Eric said quietly. "And less property damage."

Eric and Marie flanked the front door. They nodded.

Eduardo, back by the ECTO-1, smirked. Just like they were trained.

John opened the door...


He staggered back, a Calico cat affixed to his face.

"Hazel!!!" the little girl cried happily. "She's all right!!!"

"Mgphhew!!!!" John's voice was muffled but very very annoyed.

Eduardo walked over to him and grabbed the Calico by the scruff of her neck. The cat released John, and Eduardo gave her to the little girl.

"Thanks..." John breathed.

"With Kylie Griffin you always get a cat." Eduardo grinned. "Dealing with Pagan and Iago's taught me a thing or two."

"Let's try this again..." John rolled his eyes.

This time Marie took point, and the three managed to make it into the house without being any further assaulted by house pets.

"Television?" Marie whispered.

"Think so." Eric nodded.

"....Interview with the hottest new scream queen, Ichika Nakano! And how's the re-election campaign of New York Mayor Alec Jacobs going? All on tonight's UBN News!"

Standing on the coffee table was was a doll. Strawberry blonde hair with a yellow bow, a blue dress with yellow trim, black Mary Jane shoes...and a sickle gripped in her right hand.

"But now, back to Child's Play!" On screen, Chucky started to murder someone.

"Hah! This is the stuff!!!" a squeaky voice came from the doll. "This is just keeps getting funnier and funnier, every single time I watch it!!!"

"FIRE!!!" The three Ghostbusters opened fire; the proton beams slammed into the doll, sending it across the room into a lamp post, knocking it over.

"And this is why we have the clients sign a damage waiver..." Marie chuckled.

"Did that do it?" John asked.

The doll stood up, facing away from them. It's head twisted back 180 degrees, fixing them in its heterochromic glare as the rest of her body turned around to join the head. "I'm Mary-Mary! Wanna play?"

"I think that's a 'no'." Eric noted.

St. Mark's Place
" 'Small Wonders'." TJ read the sign aloud. "That's what the witness said."

Eden chuckled a little bit. "I think Mother said 'client' is the preferred term."

"Habit." TJ shook her head, getting out of the Ecto-Crusier.

Eden was close behind her. "Should we take in our gear?"

"PKE Meter only." TJ shook her head. "We don't know if there's anything here at all." She paused. "Besides, the proton packs are rather...conspicuous."

"We do have some smaller proton weapons." Eden noted, unholstering her 3.2 PKE Meter. "But we haven't been qualified on those yet."

They opened the door to see a blonde woman at the counter, polishing a ceramic gargoyle. She looked up at the two Ghostbusters. "Welcome to Small Wonders! My name is Jackie--how may I help you today?"

"I'm TJ Anderson and this is Eden Spengler." TJ answered. "We're from Ghostbusters International, and..."

"Oh yeah!" Jackie lit up. "I think one of your old guys owned a book store near here, but that was like thirty years ago. You know, I think we have something called a 'Venkman Ghost Repeller', and a cutting from the Brooklyn Demon Plant of 1985." She picked up a toy robot next to a birdhouse standing on chicken legs. "And this is a toy something called a 'Robo-Buster'. This have anything to do with you guys?"

"We're not here to shop, Jackie." TJ shook her head. "We're looking into a current investigation--where a wi--client purchased something here called a 'Mary-Mary' doll."

Jackie nodded. "Ah, that. Yeah, we sold it yesterday. Glad to get rid of the thing--it's damn creepy." She pointed to the counter. "Any chance you want to buy the other one?"

Eden and TJ looked where she pointed, to see the creepy doll that had appeared when Mary-Mary was sold. Eden raised an eyebrow and activated her PKE Meter.

"Well?" TJ asked.

"It's putting off valences." Eden nodded. "Less intense than we read at the event site, but..."

TJ looked back at Jackie "Where did you get them?"

"Search me." Jackie shrugged. "Even the owner didn't seem to know. And when I asked her about the second one she seemed as confused as I was--it was like the thing just popped out when Mary-Mary was sold. Even she didn't know we had another one."

"Maybe we will be buying this one." Eden answered.

Jackie shuddered. "On the house. Just take the creepy ass thing."

Eden, who was wearing gloves, carried the doll to the car, holding it as though it was radioactive.

"Didn't have a lot of dolls, Eden?" TJ asked.

"Just one." Eden shook her head. "Father gave me for my tenth birthday: I could open it up and see its internal organs..."

"Not even a Paddington?" TJ chuckled as she opened the trunk. "I loved my Paddington..."

There was a sudden yelp from Eden, as a blast of energy came with the doll jumping out of her grasp.


"I'm fine!" Eden replied. "But that blast looked like a proton"

The doll smoldered on the ground for a few seconds, then the smoke faded as indigo light played around it. The doll got up, facing away from them. It's head turned around, then the rest of it.

"I'm Suzy-Suzy!" the doll chirped in a squeaky voice. It gestured, and a tiny sickle appeared in her left hand. "Wanna play?"

"How did it not even hurt the damn thing?!" Marie snarled, blasting at the doll again.

"Corporeal matter, not a ghost!" John surmised. "We could try to isolate the PK trace..."

"I think first we should get it outside!" Eric said. "Or we're gonna trash this place!"

Mary-Mary, laughing, lunged at Marie.

"What, you don't think I have a sharp pointy thing or two on me, you reject from a Bratz factory?" Marie pulled out a switch blade and stabbed the doll.

"ouch" Mary-Mary giggled.

Marie grabbed it, and hurled it out the door.

Eduardo was surprised to see a doll get thrown out the door of the brownstone. He uttered a loud Spanish curse and drew his thrower. "Get behind those cars!" he told the clients and onlookers.

"We got ourselves a real live one here..." Marie said. "So to speak."

Mary-Mary laughed. She had an enormous gash, and stuffing was sticking out of her body...until there was a play of indigo light around it, and within seconds the doll was once again pristine.

"Son of a gun..." Eric muttered, aware there were children within earshot.

John's eyes narrowed. "Did it do something like that when we shot it?"

"I'm not even sure we hit it." Eric answered.

Eduardo shot the doll from behind. "Like that, Juan?"

John pulled out his GBX as the indigo light played around the doll again; once again it got up, intact.

The Ecto-Cruiser roared down the street, caution sirens running.

Suzy-Suzy was leaping along over and through the traffic, laughing merrily the whole time.

Then something odd happened.

The doll stopped, and was surrounded by indigo light. It looked, for a few seconds, like it had been torn open. Then it was intact. That finished, it started leaping away again.

"She's heading in the direction of the event site!" TJ noted.

"What just happened?" Eden mused out loud. "It was like it was suddenly damaged for a moment, then repaired itself. Similar to the energy discharge that seemed to activate it. Fascinating. TJ, can you grab my PKE Meter?"

"It won't be exactly...comfortable, under the circumstance." TJ noted, as the meter was currently in Eden's utility belt.

"We're both grown women who've already seen each other in our underwear, TJ." Eden said flatly. "If I were my brother I'd understand your concern." She smirked slightly, though TJ didn't notice.

A few seconds later, TJ had the meter out.

"Record its trace." Eden said. "In case something like that happens again."

TJ worked a few buttons. "Done." Then she set the meter down and reached into the back seat, where the proton packs had been hastily thrown.

"What are you doing?" Eden asked.

"Something so bloody stupid that you'd think it was Lupin's idea." TJ answered. She energized the neutrona wand she was holding and rolled down the window. "Basically, giving the meter something interesting to record."

The former policewoman leaned out of the Ecto-Cruiser's window, drawing a bead on Suzy-Suzy.

"You can't be..." Eden started to protest.

A proton beam lanced through the air, slamming into the laughing doll. It bounced off a building, then shook its singed head. "YOU'RE JERKS!!!" it laughed, surrounded in indigo light before leaping back off again, its singes gone.

"Don't you ever do something like that again!" Eden shouted.

TJ was almost hyperventilating as she powered down the thrower "No intention of it!"

"Though I will be sure to tell Johnathan the extents which you're willing to go for science." Eden smirked. This time, TJ caught it, and grumbled as she sunk into her seat.

John's phone rang. He grumbled as he looked at the screen; seeing that it said "TJ" he quickly answered.


"No time for small talk--there's another bloody demon doll heading your way." TJ said tersely. "Eden says record the PK trace of the one you're dealing with."

"Will do." He hung up and started the GBX recording; the PKE detection software and capacities were using the same software as the 3.2 At least until I write a better program John mused to himself.

"We're kinda in the middle of something here, JC!!!" Eric reminded him, dodging Mary-Mary's sickle, which embedded itself in a shrubbery behind him.

Mary-Mary laughed, and the sickle flew back to her. "You guys are fun!!!"

"Wish I could say the same, Desu Bitch." Marie retorted, shooting back at the doll.

"Perfect" John said quietly.

The doll shook off the effect, glowed indigo as before, and got back up none the worse for it.

What is going on with you, Fluff'n'stuff... John mused to himself. And what about your apparent compatriot?

Sure enough, a few minutes later, a second doll flew into view. "Mary-Mary!" it cried, in the exact same voice.

"Suzy-Suzy!" Mary-Mary cried back. "About time you made it!"

"Traffic on the express way was murder." Suzy-Suzy replied. "And if anybody knows anything about murder, it's us!!!"

The two dolls high-fived.

"So true!!!" Mary-Mary added. "Looks like we got some live ones here!"

"Not for long!" Suzy-Suzy giggled.

"They're even worse in stereo..." Eric grumbled.

About then, the sound of the siren on the Ecto-Cruiser reached them.

"More boring people on the way." Suzy-Suzy noted.

"Yeah, but they're our boring people!" Marie quipped back.

"Kill! Kill! Kill!" Mary-Mary chimed, jumping at Marie. Marie shot at the doll; she missed, but made Mary-Mary jump back.

The Cruiser pulled up, TJ and Eden swiftly got out and rearmed.

"I gotta check out this shop, I guess." Eric said.

"You, Mister Stantz, would probably enjoy it." TJ shook her head.

"Did you get the PKE readings?" Eden asked her brother.

"Yeah." he nodded. They passed each other their meters, and started to scroll through the data.

"Don't take all day at that!!!" Marie rolled her eyes.

"Die! Die! Die!" Suzy-Suzy chirped cheerfully, throwing her sickle at TJ. The former policewoman managed to avoid it.

"Look out from behind!!!" Eduardo told her; TJ hadn't seen Mary-Mary call her sickle back earlier, and the older Ghostbuster's warning provided just enough to not get skewered by the return arc.

"Bloody wankers..." she snarled. "Worst thing Paddington ever did was fall on my brother's PlayStation."

"The PK traces are the same as what I saw..." Eden mused to John.

"...And they're switching back and forth." John nodded. "Hey, Marie, shoot one--doesn't matter which."

"Hah! And I thought you were going to ask for something hard!" She shot Suzy-Suzy right in the crotch.

Eduardo winced.

Suzy-Suzy fell down. Mary-Mary's dress started to smolder above her crotch, then indigo light started to play around both dolls.

The two dolls laughed evilly as Suzy-Suzy stood up, both of them now intact again.

"Hah! That's how they do it!" Eden said excitedly. "They're inverting their PK traces, and resetting their physical forms!"

"I'm gonna wait until one of them puts that in English or Japanese." Marie quipped.

"They're repairing each other." John explained.

"Okay--idea!" Eric snapped his fingers. "TJ--aim at the one in yellow! Marie, the one in blue!"

The two Ghostbusters got into position.

"They're the best shots, after all." Eduardo noted.

"FIRE!!!" Eric shouted.

The proton beams slammed into the dolls, one on each.

"Eduardo! Take the one TJ's shooting!" With that, Eric added his beam to Marie's attack on Mary-Mary. Eduardo quickly fired at Suzy-Suzy.

"The PK traces are inverting, then re-inverting, then..." Eden watched the readings. "And now they're collapsing!"

The two dolls writhed in the proton beams.








With that last simultaneous shout, both dolls exploded into flaming chunks of cotton filling and cloth.

Two onyx stones hit the ground; indigo light played around them each for a couple of seconds, then stopped.

"Power down." John said, exhaling. "I think we got them."

"PKE is almost flatline." Eden nodded. "There's a very slight signal from the gems."

"Containment bottles!" John said, going to the back of the ECTO-1; he grabbed two bottles that appeared to be made of glass.

"Are these..." TJ leaned over to the gem that had come from Suzy-Suzy.

"Don't touch those--you don't have gloves on." John shook his head, handing one of the jars to Eden.

The fraternal twins each grabbed one of the gems with a set of tweezers, then put them in the jars. "The jars are made of laminated lead glass--the lamination minimizes the danger of lead exposure." Eden explained, though no one had asked.

"Eden, take one back with Eduardo in the Cruiser." John said, and his sister nodded. "The further we keep these things from each other the better."

"Good call on that 'shoot them both at once' idea, Eric." Marie slapped him on the back.

"Indeed." TJ nodded.

"So how'd we do, Teach?" John asked Eduardo.

"Not right now." Eduardo shook his head. "Bill the clients and let's get these plagas outta here..."

GBI Headquarters
The Next Day
"...Closest thing I found to what we dealt with yesterday was something in Absalom's Bestiary, Volume One..." Eric explained. "It's called a 'soulbound doll'. Dark wizards create them as companions or servants, and part of the process that creates them means killing someone and using a piece of their soul to imbue the doll with 'life'. The piece of the soul resides in a 'soul gem' usually embedded in the doll's neck or chest."

"Thus the onyx gems that fell out when we vaporized their doll forms." John added.

Eduardo looked up at the five novice Ghostbusters standing in front of his desk. "Nice to know. I imagine Egon and Ray found this all quite interesting?"

"Not just them." Eric said. "Master Vincent's already asked Uncle Egon if he can store one of the gems at Arcane Division."

"So how'd we do?" Marie asked.

Eduardo was quiet for a few seconds. "Well, there were a few problems. You split the team in a smart way, though maybe it should have waited until you had a better idea what you were dealing with."

"If we'd done that..." Eden started to protest.

"...The second doll might have activated in the shop and hurt the employee, yeah, but it might not have." Eduardo countered. He turned to Marie. "Throwing the doll out onto the street was good from the standpoint of limiting property damage to the client's house, but it also put the entity in an environment with more potential victims, hostages, and escape routes." He rolled his eyes. "A little warning at least would have been nice, you know?"

Marie shrugged.

"All that said..." Eduardo's stern expression softened. "You figured out what was up with the little shits, figured out how to stop them, and did it without any loss of life and minimal property damage. And GBI got paid. In other words--you passed. Good job."

The five Ghostbusters high fived, and at least three of them whooped out loud.

"But you're still on probation for the first ninety days..." Eduardo reminded them. "I'll be dropping in on you and won't rule out supervising a job or two until you're officially approved in September."

"Understood." TJ nodded. John nodded too, almost in unison.

"Now get outta here." Eduardo said more amiably. "I got some paperwork I gotta fill out before Kylie picks me up..."

The five Ghostbusters walked back to the ECTO-1. "He's right, you know." TJ said. "We may not have made the best decisions yesterday."

Marie snorted. "We got the job done, don't forget that part. And we got to destroy some disgustingly cute dolls in the process--that was a bonus!"

"Yeah, I know...but still, we kicked ghost ass." Eric said. "Or, well, undead construct ass, to be more precise."

"Father and his team destroyed a ballroom on their first case." Eden pointed out. "We did better than that, certainly, but that's still a lesson to keep in mind."

"At the end of the day, we're still new at this job." John nodded. "We've still got a lot to learn."

Questions? Comments? Go to the Ectozone Message Board

Based on Ghostbusters Created by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis

Extreme Ghostbusters Created by Fil Barlow

Ghostbusters: Answer The Call Created by Paul Feig and Katie Dippold

Ghostbusters 2021 Created by Fritz Baugh and OgreBBQ Editorial Staff: Dr. Vincent Belmont, EGB Fan, TheRazorsEdge
Additional Beta: Kingpin, OgreBBQ
"Small Wonders" is a little in-joke the comic strip Sally Forth by Francesco Marciuliano and Jim Keefe.

The Boogeyman is from "The Boogeyman Cometh" (RGB-75008; #106) and "The Boogeyman Is Back" (RGB-140007; #304), both by Micheal Reaves; and from "Closet Case" (Now's Real Ghostbusters No.26) by James Van Hise and Neil Grahame.

Krazy's comes from Ghostbusters: Legion by Andrew Dabb and Steve Kurth

UBN from "When Halloween Was Forever" by J. Micheal Straczynski (RGB-75010; #108)

Alec Jacobs created by James Van Hise and Neil Grahame; he first appeared in "Hat Trick", in Now Comics The Real Ghostbusters No.28

Ichika Nakano is an injoke to the manga/anime The Quintessential Quintuplets created by Negi Haruba.

Knicknacks in "Small Wonders" reference "Venkman's Ghosts Repellers" by Richard Mueller (RGB-76009, #227), "A Ghost Grows In Brooklyn" by Mark and Micheal Edens (RGB-76051, #250), and "Robo-Buster" by Francis Moss (RGB-175005, #405).

Among the inspirations for Mary-Mary and Suzy-Suzy were the Soulbound Dolls from Pathfinder Second Edition (Absalom's Bestiary Volume 1 nods to the dolls appearing in the first BF2 Bestiary)

Vincent Belmont's mention courtesy of Pointy Hat Games

Characters not taken from official material were created by Fritz Baugh unless otherwise specified.

Eric Stantz and Marie Lupin created by OgreBBQ.

Jessica Venkman, Hayden Wallance and his (full) siblings, St. Susanna's School, Oscar's band Mood Slime, and Iago the cat created by EGB Fan.

Ecto-Cruisers created by Mick Nielson

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