CON-FUSION

From the Case Files of Dr. Fritz V. Baugh, Ghostbusters West Coast Division; With the assistance of Dr. Vincent Belmont, Ghostbusters Arcane Division; Kevin Kemarly, Onarga Ghostbusters; Dr. Greg Justis, Ghostbusters Detroit Division
GBI Case File GBI-2005-23/820
Indianapolis, Indiana
August 20, 2005
Ghostbusters Omnibus Timeline Year Twenty Three
Dr. Fritz V. Baugh, thirty-four year old physicist and three-year veteran of Ghostbusters International, grumbled to himself. "Not often enough I get to the old home town...I've never even been to the Convention Center before today...and now this..."

He was about ready to hurl the PKE meter that was giving him totally useless information...The PKE traces are shifting constantly...and there's no telling which ones are from whatever's doing this, and which are from the convention goers in the area...

He usually left such vulgarities to Jeremy Hicks or Andy Harness, but he couldn't help but mutter out loud "This sucks..."

It had seemed like a good idea at the time when Dr. Nick Schueren, the CEO of the Louisville franchise, had suggested that some of GBI's members make a promotional appearance at GenCon, the large gaming convention. Fritz, having lived in Indianapolis from practically as long as he could remember until he went to college (and then again for a few years after Newark but before joining GBI), couldn't argue with Dr. Venkman that it would be "logical" for him to be one of those representatives. (Never mind the fact that Venkman's face had to have about burst into flames for using the word "logical" semi-seriously).

The fact that actor Ernie Hudson, who had played GBI legend Winston Zeddemore in the two famous movies based on GBNY's cases, would be attending only seemed to be icing on the cake.

He'd spotted Vincent Belmont, CEO of the Arcane Division, first. The two had spent some time together before, working on the Gozer case during the previous summer, then Belmont had been present at the...incident...

Fritz shifted slightly in the prosthetic that stood in the place of his left leg. He was beginning to seriously question the wisdom of coming down here without his wheelchair.

Anyway, he'd seen Belmont first, but the teams had accumulated quickly. Dr. Greg Justis, CEO of the Detroit Division, and his girlfriend, Amy Kerns. Kevin Kemarly, CEO of the Onarga Ghostbusters, which had pretty much assumed Ghostbusting duties over the Chicago area since the virtual demise of the Chicago Division (one former member, in fact, now lived in LA and was one of Fritz's reservists). And Dr. Schueren's entire team.

"Fritz!" Belmont had said. "I can't believe how good you're looking! If I hadn't seen it happen myself, or seen you over Christmas, I wouldn't have guessed."

"Guessed what?" one of the Louisville Ghostbusters asked.

Nick playfully smacked the one that spoke up. "You haven't been paying attention to the company memoes, have you?"

Fritz simply reached down and pulled up his left pant leg, revealing the prosthetic. "I have an appointment with the orthopedics doctors this Tuesday, in fact. Six month evaluation since I got it..."

"Wow" Amy nodded. "Vincent's right--I never would've guessed either..." She wasn't quite wearing standard uniform--she had a Mark 3 Proton Pistol (the same design originally created in 1997 for Kylie Griffin, and later favored by Iain Bennett of the Ghostbusters UK), complete with extra plasma cores stored in a bandolier.

"I attribute it to a year and a half chasing Class Fives through haunted houses, and a couple years running around the K-mart before that" Fritz responded. "I think the conditioning was beneficial."

"No proton pack?" Greg asked.

"Not for something I'm going to be standing and walking around for any length of time--it was bad enough with all my original parts." Fritz replied. "But I'm not totally unarmed..." with the faintest hint of a grin, he opened the lab coat he was wearing to reveal a neutrona saber attached to his belt. A Model 3.0 PKE Meter was close by as well.

Vincent looked around. "All by yourself? I thought Chelsea was coming to Indy as well..."

Fritz nodded. "She did. But she decided to spend the day going to the Zoo with her mother. Skip 'Geek Fest' as she so eloquently put it." which brought a chuckle. "And while we're at it, where's Jill?"

"Pretty much the same." Vincent answered simply. "We've been married a full year now--I guess she thought I might be able to handle this on my own."

"Or SHE wanted to get away from YOU for a few days." Amy laughed, sticking out her tongue.

After a few photographers (and a guy in a Jedi costume) asked for pictures, Nick suggested that maybe they go visit Ernie Hudson.

It was shortly after entering the actual Convention Center floor that Fritz realized that his entire party seemed to have vanished.

Elsewhere
Vincent Belmont turned and nudged Kevin Kemarly. "Wasn't Fritz just with us?"

Kevin looked around. "Huh? He was right behind us..."

Vincent's brow knit. "We keep forgetting he's not as fast as he used to be..."

Ernie Hudson was signing autographs for the fans in line. "Vincent Belmont? Is that you? Hey, man, glad to see you..." Ernie grinned shaking his hand. "Wish I could talk more, but the Convention guys want to keep the line moving."

"Understood." Vincent nodded. "Mister Zeddemore sends his regards."

Kevin looked a little awestruck. "You know Ernie Hudson?"

"Met him earlier this year at Pittburgh. I was there with Nightsquad..." Vincent grimaced. "Though there he wasn't charging twenty dollars for the autographs."

Vincent's wizard instincts were starting to kick in. He wasn't sure what, but something he didn't like was starting, or already happening here.

"C'mon..." he said brusquely, and led Kevin back toward the registration area.

"Belmont! Kev!!!" they looked up to see Greg Justis and Amy Kerns. "Where's Fritz? I thought he was with you."

"We were just wondering that ourselves..." Vincent replied. "We'd better backtrack to the registration area...

They didn't get more than ten steps before they were stopped by a cameraman and a man dressed like a fairy.

And let us clarify: we don't mean that in the usual colloquial definition of the term. He was dressed like a fairy, complete with gossamer wings.

Greg nudged Vincent. "I know that guy...he's Adam Sessler, from X-Play...it's on Tech TV..."

"Well, we're G4 TV now..." Sessler said brightly.

"Whatever..." Vincent muttered.

"So...I'm gonna take a wild guess and say you guys are Ghostbusters?"

"No. We're cosmonauts" Greg deadpanned.

Sessler laughed. "Big fans of the movie, huh? Was it the first one or the second one where Sigourney Weaver got sucked into the painting?"

"We're here representing Ghostbusters International. I'm Kevin Kemarly, Onarga Ghostbusters, Dr. Greg Justis. Detroit Division, and this is Dr. Vincent Belmont, Arcane Division in New York City. And who are you again?" Kevin added brightly.

Sessler laughed again, uncomfortably. "You do realize that ghosts are fictional, right?"

Vincent really didn't want to deal with this right now. "Really? I suppose next you'll be telling me that Santa Claus doesn't exist either."

Sessler's face twisted into deep thought as he searched his mind quickly for the perfect comeback. Five seconds had rolled by, and he began to look nervous as he saw the cameraman had time to fidget with the camera. He suddenly grabbed the microphone with both hands and nearly pressed his face into Vincent's.

"Oh no, he's real...I saw him last week. Hanging at the Starbucks with the Easter Bunny and the Great Pumpkin..." Sessler zinged, looking at the camera to convey his own pleasure at this cleverness to the audience.

"Cute..." Vincent replied dryly.

"So, the wings....do they do it for me?" Sessler asked brightly.

Vincent had enough. Only moments before, Vincent was fighting the urge to use magic to turn Sessler into a little 4-year old girl with a frilly pink dress and pigtails.

"Of course, Mr. Sessler," Vincent growled, "who wouldn't peg YOU for a fairy? Of course, you also looked a bit taller on the Lucky Charms box..."

Kevin looked nervously at Vincent, who had just begun to roll up his left sleeve. Greg thought fast. "Dude...it only gives ammunition to the Dragonball Z fans who send you hate mail. They already think you're a fairy..." Greg shook his head. He looked up suddenly. "Hey! Is that the Fullmetal Alchemist Revenge Squad?" he said more loudly, pointing behind Sessler.

Adam looked around suddenly. "Oh, crap...they weren't kidding about that death order?" he cried. "Huh?" he said, suddenly realizing that there was nobody dressed like "a robot with a loincloth" or one of the other characters standing behind him.

And when he turned around, there was nobody dressed in Ghostbuster flight suits standing near him anymore either.

Sessler mugged for the camera.

"My thanks, Greg...that was some quick thinking..." Vincent finally said when they were a safe distance from the cable TV host.

"Thanks." Greg answered, smirking. "The Fullmetal Alchemist fans really are out to get him, though. They gave both their games bad reviews...but it's not his fault they really did suck."

Kevin paused for another moment or two. "I just wish I understood why we keep having to explain to everyone why we're in business...I mean, the frickin' Marshmallow Man was on CNN just last summer..."

"It's complicated, Kevin, but it has to do with some powerful individuals who don't want too many people knowing the truth. I assume you didn't catch sight of Fritz either in this mob?"

"No..." Kevin shook his head "You get anything?"

"Hard to tell...there are so many people in the area, and a lot of them are...well, so many creative individuals generates a much higher level of static PKE in the area. I'm having trouble filtering through the noise..."

"And I think Fritz had the only PKE meter..." Greg noted.

"This is definitely getting to be a problem." Belmont observed, adjusting his glasses.

Fritz took another few steps, and collapsed into a chair at the food court. He exhaled loudly, and began looking for a rest room. I have to check the stump... he thought to himself. If it's started to blister I may be in deeper trouble than I thought... He looked at his watch, and it was reading 12:15. No wonder I'm hungry...

He realized that someone was looking at him.

It was a teenage boy, wearing only a white t-shirt and black bicycle pants, with goggles perched atop hair that was gelled into a frizz and dyed bright red. He wasn't wearing any shoes. Ed from Cowboy Bebop I presume... He was about to say "Yes, I'm a Ghostbuster..." but was cut short by the boy's eyes glowing bright orange for a second.

Fritz about fell out of his chair.

Fritz blinked, and the strange boy was gone. Teleportation?! he thought. Then he looked down and realized his watch read 12:18...

"Fritz!!!" he heard a voice shout. He looked up to see Vincent and Kevin heading his way. "Where in the world did you go?"

"At first I thought I'd zigged when I should've zagged." Fritz replied. "But I'm beginning to think there's more to it..."

Greg and Amy showed up just then, having been stopped by photographers. "Well, glad to see he's okay. I'm sure I didn't want to have to tell the home office that we lost one of their frachise CEOs..."

Fritz then told all of them about his strange encounter with the boy dressed like Ed.

"I thought Ed was a girl..." Amy commented.

"A very androgynous girl." Greg clarified.

"And then I realized I'd lost three whole minutes..." Fritz continued. "I'd just checked my watch before he appeared, and while to me it only seemed maybe thirty seconds maximum..."

Vincent nodded. "Possibly it's playing with your perceptions. It realized that you might suspect what it is, and clouded your mind long enough to make it's escape."

"But then what is it?" Kevin asked.

Fritz stood up. "We don't know for sure, but if it realizes we deal with the supernatural and might pose a threat to it, it's all the more imperative that we locate it and find out."

"We left most of our equipment in the Marriot." Greg said. "A meter, some ecto-visors, and a couple of traps. We didn't bring'em into the Convention Center because the packs are pretty heavy."

Vincent nodded. "Procure those. You wouldn't happen to have an extra proton pack?"

"Fraid not." Greg answered.

"I left mine in LA." Fritz shook his head. "But I'm not up to wearing it much anyway--the neutron saber will have to do. Did any of you see Nick's crew?"

"Not since..." Kevin paused, thinking. "Not since we saw Ernie Hudson. You don't think something happened to them?"

"Not impossible." Vincent mused.

"All right..." Fritz said, expression hardening. "Greg, do what Vincent said and get the rest of your gear. I need to get to a bathroom to check my prosthetic..."

"Kev, stay with him." Vincent suggested. "I'll make a once-over of the Convention Center floor, see if I can locate Dr. Schueren and the Louisville Ghostbusters. We'll meet at the Marriot skywalk at 1PM."

The group nodded, and moved off.

Convention Center Floor
12:45 PM EST
Vincent pushed through all of the vendors on the convention floor as he looked at the piles of Role-Playing game books, colorful dice, card games, and a wealth of other gaming supplies. He had only wished that he had more money. He snapped back to reality when he realized that he was still searching for someone.

His attantion was again diverted by the "Fantasy Flight Games" booth when he bumped into someone.

"Oh!" Vincent gasped, "my apologies, Sir...I..."

Vincent stopped mid-sentance. He looked up at the man he had bumped into; he was dressed in a long and flowing gray robe. His white beard was long and full, and nearly hid his lips from view, and his head was crowned by a wide-brimmed gray pointed cap that bent backward near the top, typical of a man dressed up as a wizard. He leaned against his wooden staff that he carried, and when he saw Vincent, his features twisted into a friendly smile. Vincent, however, knew that this man was not just dressed up like Gandalf the Grey from the Lord of the Rings movies.

"Antonius?" Vincent stammered, "Antonius Weissbart? ...of house Jerbiton? Salve, Sodalis!"

The old man smiled, and held out his hand, shaking Vincent's vigorously. His chuckle grew into a belly laugh.

"Vincent Belmont, house Bonisagus, I presume..." Antonius grinned, "...a pleasure to see you here."

"I would ask you WHAT you are doing here, Antonius." Vincent asked him, as both men began walking down the aisles of the Exhibit hall, "Are you out here amongst the mundanes here because you won't look out of place in your robes for once?" Vincent chuckled.

"In fact," Antonio said, tapping his hat brim with his index finger, "that's only ONE reason. The other is to look at some of the game books to make sure that no secrets have been leaked out about people like us."

"Who else is here?" Vincent asked, already scanning the gargantuan exhibit floor for more men dressed as wizards. "Well," Antonius mused as he ran his hands through his beard, "There's Bart Kinsey of House Quaesitoris, Eloise Wellington of House Merinita, and I came with Alonzo Alphonze of House Jerbiton."

Vincent shook his hand again. "It was good to see you, Antonius. Perhaps I will see you after the convention is over?"

"The drink will be on me at the Green Dragon!" Antonius waved as he disappeared into the crowd.

Vincent continued with his search.

Skywalk Connecting the Marriot and the Indianapolis Convention Center
1:00 PM EST
"..Dunno, I mean we've had some big cases, like the Baccardio files or the Odïn incident, but not like Gozer." Kevin continued his coments, "Man, I still can't believe you guys fought Gozer."

"If you're lucky, Kevin..." Fritz sighed. "You'll never have to deal with anything in that league."

"I dunno, I'da liked to been over there with you guys." Kevin smiled as he shook his head. "Savin' the world is the best part . Which reminds me: just how did things end up in the Gozer case? Obviously the world didn't get destroyed, or we wouldn't be having this discussion, but what's taking so long in getting the rest of the file out?"

"The GBWC going off-line and my injuries certainly contributed to it..." Fritz admitted. "For some odd reason the main office values my input on the case files; I've even been involved in declassifying some of the GBNY's old cases..."

Fritz had been relieved to see that there were no open, running wounds on his stump, though it was definitely red and sore. It had been the most exertion he'd put on it since getting the prosthetic.

Kevin looked at his watch. "It's about that time, isn't it?"

Fritz nodded.

Fifteen minutes passed.

"Shouldn't we have heard from Vincent or Greg by now?"

"Probably." Fritz replied.

Kevin looked around. "Let me go make a quick run back to the registration area. Maybe there's some sign...you think you'll be okay by yourself?"

Fritz nodded. "I have the meter turned on, and the neutron saber." he said, as he pulled the device off his belt and placed it on the windowsill next to him.

Kevin walked off a little warily.

At 1:25 Vincent Belmont appeared. "Where the heck are Kemarly and Justis?"

"We never saw Greg or Amy. And Kevin went off to look for you about ten minutes ago..."

Vincent rubbed his temples in aggravation. "Something is definitely not right with this situation..."

Kevin appeared, a cola in his hand. "There you are!"

"There I am? Where were you?"

"I went to find you...you were late..."

"Late? But I..." Vincent looked at his watch. "Damn it all..."

"Did you see Nick?" Fritz asked.

"No...what about Justis?"

Fritz and Kevin both shook their heads. "We head over to the Marriot..." the older man said, picking his saber back up and reattaching it to his belt. "At this point we can't even be sure they made it there."

Indianapolis Downtown Marriot
1:30 PM EST
Vincent, Fritz, and Kevin crossed the skywalk and went down the stairs to the reception desk at the Marriot...

...to see Greg and Amy standing there arguing with the desk clerk.

"Greg? What happened?" Kevin asked.

Greg blinked a couple of times..."Wha...something happen? It isn't 1:00 yet..."

Fritz was looking at his meter. "It isn't. Actually it's 1:32."

Greg looked at his watch. "Son of a bitch!!!"

"How in God's name did we lose, like, an hour?" Amy asked.

"Some sort of time dihilation?" Vincent asked.

"No." Fritz answered. "I haven't picked up any delta particles...no signs of any temporal distortion..." he looked up, thinking about what happened when he saw "Ed". "I think it's more likely what Vincent said earlier--our minds are being clouded...our perception of time is what's being distorted."

"We stick together from now on then." Greg said resolutely. "We may have already lost Louisville to this, and almost each other."

"Agreed." Vincent nodded. "We get up to your room together for the rest of the gear."

They had just gotten off the elevator at the sixth floor when they saw someone in an elf costume staggering along the hall way.

"Rough day?" Kevin asked, suspecting the elf was drunk.

"No kiddin'..." the elf replied. "I was in the live dungeon on the second floor...I know it's supposed to be rough, but that wiped me out..."

Vincent and Greg looked at each other. "Geek fatigue?" Greg asked sarcastically.

"I shoulda known the DM was evil, though..." the elf slurred. "Anybody who dresses like Ed from Cowboy Bebop ain't firin' on all cylinders."

All five Ghostbusters suddenly gave each other a very meaningful look.

Fritz whipped out his PKE meter. His brow furrowed.

"Need help to your room?" Kevin asked.

"Nah...I'll make it..." the elf replied, and staggered off.

"Guys?" Greg asked.

"His aura is a mess..." Vincent shook his head.

"PK emanations are almost flatline--like most of his PKE field was suppressed, or drained away..."

"Well, all of a sudden we know where we're going..." Kevin said resolutely, pulling his thrower.

"The Live Dungeon"
Second Floor, Indianapolis Downtown Marriot
2:00 PM EST
"Step aside...step aside..." Greg was saying, using his imposing height to try and clear the way for his comrades. "Official Ghostbusters International business..."

"Hey!!! You assholes!!! Quit cuttin' the line!!!"

"They look more like they should be in the Superhero bit on the next floor..."

"Wha? I thought they were the janitors..."

Kevin rolled his eyes. "Our adoring public..."

The arms on Fritz's meter were beginning to raise, and blink more frequently. "There's definitely something here..."

"Hey, howcum Ramis ain't wearin' a backpack? And where's the black guy? And I don't remember a chick, but I like this idea..." one fat guy in a He-Man costume said, ogling Amy.

"Dry up." she snarled back at him.

A bouncer or security officer stepped in their way. "I'm sorry, but you'll have to wait your turn. Unless you have a reserved access pass, you'll have to go to the end of the line..."

"We're here on official Ghostbusters buisness." Vincent bit out forcefully. "I really don't have time for this--let us do our job or I'll turn you into a frog!!!" he roared, and the staff member shrunk back.

"Is one of your Dungeon Masters dressed like Ed from Cowboy Bebop? T-shirt, black bicycle pants, no shoes?" Fritz asked another staff member quickly.

"Ralph?" the staff member replied. "Hey, wait a sec...why didn't you just say so? Ralph said some guys in Ghostbuster costumes were coming..." He pulled out a packet of plastic laminated cards and papers. "Reserved access passes right here, along with your travel package."

He handed one pouch to Vincent. "You look like the party's wizard, right?"

Vincent only frowned as he let the sense of irony sink in.

"This is bad..." Kevin whispered to Greg. "This means he knows we're coming..."

"You're a nice big fella." the staff member said to Greg. "We'll let you be the fighter."

"Let's see..." he went over to Kevin. "Thief, I bet..."

“He prefers to be called a ‘treasure hunter’” Greg quipped.

“You...you, Miss, are definitely a barbarian...”

Greg smirked. “Well, I do call her Red Sonja sometimes when we...OW!!!” as Amy elbowed him in the gut.

“And you...well, I guess a cleric...”

“You have to be kidding.” Fritz answered. Vincent rolled his eyes with amusement. Fritz sighed. “Well, I suppose it could be worse--better this than having a huge nose and hauling all the loot...”

“Treasure.” Greg chuckled.

Fritz tersely thanked the staff member, and the five Ghostbusters moved off.

"I thought you weren't allowed to use magic on Muggles..." Kevin quipped, brightly.

"I'll give the same answer Hagrid did." Vincent rolled his eyes. "We may know that, but he didn't..." A ten-foot troll suddenly sprung from the floor. Acting with appropriate Ghostbuster instinct, Kev and Greg fired...

...Reducing the plastic prop to burning junk.

“I wonder how expensive that was...” Kevin said.

"GBI will reimburse them. But only if they can prove we did it." Greg answered.

“I don’t think anybody else came into this maze with particle throwers, Hon...” Amy pointed out.

"He heh heh..." a voice rang from the darkness. "I guess you found me. How unfortunate--for you!!!" the man dressed like Ed appeared out of the shadows, eyes ablaze.

"Can we just blast him?" Greg muttered to Fritz as quietly as possible.

"No..." Fritz replied. "It's posessing the body..."

"I bet you won't blast this body, will you? It would be a shame to harm your little fellow meat bag..." the creature gloated.

"I'm working on an exorcism rote..." Vincent said. "But I'd need time to cast the formulaic spell to have much chance of success..."

"Greg...Kevin...you wouldn't happen to be using the Mark 4 proton packs?" Fritz asked.

"I am..." Kevin replied.

Vincent nodded. "I think I know what you're getting at..."

"Setting 5." Fritz said simply.

"Setting 5..." Kevin looked confused for a second. "Duh, of course...I never use that one so I sorta forgot about it..."

"So much lovely energy in this place..." "Ed" started to giggle. "So much creativity here. I thrive on that energy...I used to live in Hollywood. Then I ate all the creative energy out of the place, and moved on. Nashville, Motown...all sufficed, for a time. But lately I've been starving...I understood there was still creativity in Washington DC, but the evil aura around that place...well...even a parasite like me has his limits. So somehow I ended up in this dried out burg...possibly the least creative city on Earth...."

Fritz rolled his eyes. "I grew up here--I can't argue with that..."

Greg and Amy took up positions beside Kevin.

"Then it happened. All these delicious creative gamers, bustling with creative energy...imagination out the yin-yang...absolutely delicious!!! That's why I'm going to stay here for a while...and you can't stop me, because you don't want to hurt your fellow meatbag..."

"Now!!!" Kevin shouted. Greg fired his proton pack (the classic Mark 1), Amy fired her proton pistol, and the posessed Ed flinched, not sure which way to jump. Kevin took advantage of his hesitation, and fired--the beam washed around the posessed young man, holding him in place.

"One of Doctor Stantz's more inspired ideas..." Vincent smirked.

He gestured, readying the final elements of the spell...

Before a stream of orange light exited the posessed body. With an angry howl, it jumped at Kevin Kemarly...

"Oh shit!!!" Greg snarled. He took a shot at the creature, but it was too quick--Kevin fell back as though hit, the orange light disappearing...

Then his eyes opened, glowing orange.

"Well now, this seems to solve that problem..." the thing gloated in Kevin's voice. "Stand back...I can do to you whatever he was doing to me..."

Vincent cursed to himself. No time to finish the formulaic spell now--he would have to risk the quick cast "Ars...perdo...vim!!!" he shouted, casting the exorcism spell.

The posessed Kevin staggered, snarling with pain.

"Oh damn..." Greg said.

Vincent drew back to try again; the spell had only been partly effective.

"Perhaps a new tack..." "Kevin" shouted. "That one is defenseless..." with that, the orange light exited Kevin and blasted toward Fritz.

"Shows what you know." Fritz quipped, as the creature found itself eating the blade of a neutron saber.

After writhing for a few seconds, the entity fell back, staggered, confused...

"Now that's what I was waiting for!!!" Greg whooped, as he and Amy blasted the howling entity. "Somebody throw the trap!!!"

Vincent grabbed the trap, threw it, and within moments the energy parasite was sucked, howling, into its innards.

The Indianapolis Convention Center
3:00 PM
"I mean it..." Kevin was saying as he ate a bite of his pizza. "I don't remember a thing after meeting Ernie Hudson..."

All five Ghostbusters were sitting in a food kiosk back in the Convention Center. They'd left the proton packs back in Justis's hotel room.

"The memory should return eventually..." Vincent noted, sipping from his drink. "Either way, neither Fritz nor I detect any lingering aftereffects. The man the creature posessed showed no permanent damage either..."

"That's good." Greg nodded. "I jury-rigged the trap to a couple of the proton cores we brought--that should keep it energized until we get it back to Detroit. After that Mister Ed can see how creative the ghosts in our Ecto Containment Unit are...Now just what was that 'Setting 5' business? I'm still running with the old classic Mark 1..."

"Nothing wrong with that, certainly." Vincent nodded. "That design served Professor Spengler's team quite well for many years. But when Doctor Stantz created the Mark 4, some new features were included in addition to the original 'Attack' and 'Capture' modes. Setting 5 is for use against organic beings."

"Basically, the same emitter settings they used when they briefly flirted with crime fighting in 1985." Fritz added. "It's all but useless against paranormal beings, though."

Greg shook his head, grinning. "I may have to consider upgrading..."

Fritz was looking at his pizza with a jaundiced eye. "Now we know how the Convention Center makes it's money--six bucks for this? I could get the same thing at Pizza Hut for half that..."

"Aye, Uncle Scrooge, we know..." Vincent joked; having been born in Scotland, the accent was spot-on.

"Quite a thought, though, that creature eating the creativity out of people." Greg remarked.

"Personally, I think it explains a lot about the state of our entertainment industry." Fritz sniffed.

They about fell out of their chairs when Nick Schueren and a couple of his crew appeared. They were no longer wearing their proton packs. "Justis! Belmont! So where have you guys been?"

"Where have we been? Where have you been?!" Greg replied.

"We went to Circle Center Mall after we saw Ernie Hudson. Why? Something happen?"

The other five Ghostbusters just looked at each other, then started to laugh.

Epilog
September 13, 2005
Ghostbusters Arcane Division Headquarters
Manhattan, New York
Another video game based on an anime. You know it won't be pretty. Plus, nerd utopia as Adam Sessler goes to GenCon. Next, on X-Play...

"Vincent!!! Dude!!! This is it!!!" Nate Inugami called out between bites of Cheesy-Poofs.

Vincent, his wife Jill, and Dr. Gabriel Angelo Martin came into the room to see what Inugami was excited about.

"Oh no.." Vincent groaned as he realized what it was...

Sessler: So...I'm gonna take a wild guess and say you guys are Ghostbusters?

Justis: No. We're cosmonauts

Sessler: (laughs) Big fans of the movie, huh? Was it the first one or the second one where Sigourney Weaver got sucked into the painting?

Kemarly (off camera): We're here representing Ghostbusters International. I'm Kevin Kemarly, Onarga Ghostbusters, Dr. Greg Justis. Detroit Division, and this is Dr. Vincent Belmont, Arcane Division in New York City.

Sessler: You do realize that ghosts are fictional, right?

Shot of Vincent apparently looking shocked and confused

"Ooh, burn..." Nate laughed, flicking a Cheesy Poof into the air, and eating it as it fell.

"I hate that show..." Vincent mumbled.

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