Book One: Revelation

Transcribed by Brian "Reilly" Walker, ECTO Canada, Ben King and Iain Bennett, GBUK, Dr. Fritz Baugh, GBWC, and Dr. Vincent Belmont, GBUKGS


GBI Case File GBI-2004-22/001
E.C.T.O. Canada
Come Hell Or High Spirits, Part One

May 27th, 9:15am, Canada(EST)
Ghostbusters Omnibus Timeline Year Twenty-Two
12 days until the end of the world.
They had been open for three weeks without a single call. Although Ghostbusters International Franchises often have difficulty getting started, this was beyond belief. Toronto was a large city; dense with PKE readings which over the months had steadily been growing worse. In fact, all over the world the readings had been increasing drastically, with little corresponding rise in spectral activity. Something grandiose was brewing, and the newly founded Ectoplasmic Containment Team Of Canada, " E.C.T.O. Canada," was already running short of funds.

"This isn't good," remarked Brian "Reilly" Walker, co-founder of E.C.T.O Canada and resident mechanic. "Downtown Toronto's PKE density has doubled in little over a day. We should investigate."

"Investigate?! Are you crazy?! Who's gonna pay us to investigate?" Chris asked, sounding almost angry. Chris Davis was the more sensible of the two. He was gung-ho, but not to the point of chasing down ghosts for no reason. That would eliminate customers, and put them out of business. But Chris had other reasons for doing this too. He was also honoring his lost brother, Julian, as a fighter of evil spirits.

"I just want a chance to test out my PowerTrap." said Brian slyly. He was a little gung-ho, and very sarcastic. He had a knack for inventions, and the PowerTrap was his latest.

"What is that thing, anyways?" asked Chris, only half interested.

"It's basically a trap and proton pack stuffed into a grenade." Brian explained. "When armed, it gives the user thirty-seconds to throw it before it sends out multiple proton streams, and then sucks the entity into it."

"That sounds pretty cool..." said Chris, more interested now.

"Well, it has it's limitations. For one, it relies on the PowerCell technology found in certain proton pack revisions, and it can only be used once before it needs a new cell. In addition, since the cell powers the trap as well, it's proton streams are significantly weaker than those of a real pack. Of course, that doesn't mean it won't destroy any breakables in the surrounding area. It's equally effective in that aspect."

"So then, what is it good for?"

"Trapping entities without having to get close. I just don't know how useful it will be against more powerful entities such as demons and stronger manifestations. If I could find a better power source..."

Chris knew what was coming. Brian would drone on about his weird theories and start scribbling numbers and symbols on the blackboard. And drone he did. He snatched a piece of chalk up from the table and was writing before his hand touched the chalkboard. He wouldn't finish for hours, and he certainly wouldn't notice if Chris quietly slipped out of the room... which he did.

(9:30am)

Downstairs, Chris sat at a wooden reception desk in the garage and gazed at his surroundings. The desk was littered with papers, mostly faxes from GBI and bills for electricity. Chris had his feet propped up on a stack of said faxes that had already been read and were waiting to be filed. Waiting until they hired a secretary to file them, that is.

The empty firehall was in need of some serious work. They had purchased it from the city who had it condemned due to much needed repairs and a lack of funding.

Ghostbusters International recommended that all franchises use a firehall as their base of operations, so Chris and Brian leapt at the chance to purchase it so cheap. Unfortunately, they did not realize the extent of the work that needed to be done.

The main support beams on the ground level all had to be replaced before they could even move in. That took two weeks. Then, after finally getting the containment unit installed, they found the basement water pipes in need of replacing. Brian's design called for liquid cooling to keep from overheating, and rusted out lead pipes did not make the cut.

There were good surprises too, though. For one, unlike most firehalls, the wiring was surprisingly up to date. It seemed that this firehall's basement was equipped to be a fallout center, complete with own backup generators and high voltage cable already installed. The generators needed a little work, tightening a few bolts here and there, not to mention being cleaned and oiled, but would easily be enough to ensure that the containment unit stayed online during power outages.

Then, there were the re-enforced walls and ceilings. In the event of a massive containment failure, it would be very unlikely to cause major structural damage to the building. The original Ghostbusting team had encountered such troubles, and it was good to know that E.C.T.O. Canada was already prepared.

*BEEP BEEP BEEEEEP*

Chris looked up. A fax was coming in from Ghostbusters International. There was always a fax coming in; usually about some new merchandise or pricing plans, or miscellaneous marketing paperwork. Chris glanced at the papers and saw that one of GBWC's members, Jeremy Hicks, had gone missing. He rolled his eyes and crumpled up the notice as he threw it into the trash.

"What the hell would he be doing in Canada, anyways?", Chris muttered to himself as he headed back upstairs.

(10:00am)

"Brian," Chris called out as he entered the room, "We just got another fax from GBI. Jeremy Hicks of GBWC is missing. Keep your eyes open."

"What would he be doing in Canada?" Brian asked sleepily, being drawn out of the mathematical trance he was still in at the chalkboad.

"Obviously he's not in Canada, lunkhead!" Chris replied, "But they've probably just got one send list that goes to all the franchises. Saves ‘em a lot of time from having to send a bunch out to each franchise. This is pathetic..."

"What's pathetic, now?"

"This! Sitting around with nothing to do..."

"Some of us are working, you know."

"Whatever. We should be out catching ghosts. I bet those other Canadian Ghostbusters have their phones ringing off the hook. Maybe we should move out to the east coast?" Chris was getting anxious.

"Maybe not." retorted Brian flatly.

Chris walked into the next room and turned on the TV. Some news show was on, so he flipped channels. More news. "Jesus. there's news on evey damn channel! Is it me, or is Toronto really lacking in quality TV stations?"

"Red Green should be on right now. Try channel nine."

"News."

"News?" asked Brian. He wasn't paying any attention at all.

"Yes, news. That's what I said." Chris replied. He was starting to get a little red in the face.

"Are you sure?" Brian wondered, still not looking, and probably not caring.

"I'm postive, Brian. I'm starting right at the freakin' set. Do you think I could be right here and not know what I'm talking about?" Chris was getting upset now. His crazy vein was popping out of his forehead. He hated it whenever Brian was too busy to pay attention.

"Well, then it must be something important, turn up the volume."

"Important my ass..." muttered Chris. He turned up the volume anyways, extra loud so Brian would have to listen, too.

"...a few injured, but so far, no fatalities. The Police have been unable to stop the man, or either of his bears..."

"See, just some nutball walking around town with two bears--waitaminute. Those are Terror Dogs!"

"Right," said Brian sarcastically. "As if you'd know what a Terror Dog looks like; You slept through the whole GBI info session on catalogued supernatural entities."

"Did not, I stayed awake for the Terror Dog part." Chris angrily replied, "Saw ‘em on TV when I was a kid, wanted one for a pet."

"I'm sure they'd make great pets, too..." said Brian, rolling his eyes.

"Hey, I've never seen one attack it's master before. Have you? Besides, I'm telling you, man, those things are Terror Dogs!"

Brian walked over to the TV and looked at the screen, humouring Chris. What he saw made his blood run cold.

"Shit."

As soon as Chris heard Brian utter the word, he knew it was bad. And in Chris' mind, bad meant action. "I'll grab the packs, you warm up the car!" Chris said excitedly, running for the firepole. Brian ran after him, slid down the pole, and at the bottom, they quickly changed into their uniforms. Brian headed for the hearse.

It was a 59 Caddy, like the original Ghostbusters', only this one was strictly a hearse, not a combination model. They had retrofitted it with sirens, and painted it black with orange fins. The orange and green no-ghost emblem that served as E.C.T.O. Canada's logo proudly emblazoned its sides, and adorned the hood in ornament form.

Since it was a hearse, it already had the rollers needed to harness the rack for the proton packs. However, it did not have the electrical system of an ambulance, and as such, had to be rewired to make the roof rack operational.

Brian grasped the chrome handle, and swung open the polished black door. He got inside, admired the perfectly restored interior for a second, and put the key into the silver ignition. He turned, and with a loud groan, and then a sigh, the Ectomobile refused to start.

He gave the car a little gas, and tried again. This time it turned over, and the engine purred softly. Brian got out of the car and went around back, opening the door for Chris so he could load the packs.

"You know, we really haven't had a successful test of all this equipment yet..." Chris reminded.

"Now don't start that again. Let's go," commanded Brian as he climbed back into the driver's seat.

"How come you always get to drive?" smirked Chris as they headed out for their first bust.

(11:00am)

"Well, it's still standing. That's a good sign" remarked Chris, referring to the CN Tower.

"Har har," Brian was not amused. This was bad and he knew it. Understandably, he was not in the mood for jokes.

"Yeesh, this must be bad--Hey! There he is!" Chris said, pointing to the base of the tower.

The stranger, a young man wearing glasses, walked past the base of the tower. He paid the Ghostbusters no attention, regardless of the lights and siren on the car. On each side of him, walked a horrific beast, powerful and muscular. Their grey and leathery skin was stretched over its muscular frame, like some hellish pit bull. Their eyes were a deep scarlet, and their horns stretched on either side of their head. They were the "Terror Dogs." Great beasts encountered by the Ghostbusters in 1983.

"So what do we do?" asked Chris.

"I guess we find out what it wants." replied Brian, exiting the vehicle, and walking towards the stranger.

Chris followed closely with his thrower drawn. He wasn't too worried about the stranger, but the Terror Dogs worried him. Those things probably weighed about six hundred pounds each, and they were solid muscle and teeth.

Brian however, just followed his PKE Meter. Sometimes, he was so oblivious to danger...Chris shook his head just thinking about it. It made them a good team. Not really brains and brawn, as both were relatively equals on all playing fields. No, it was more like Chris didn't have the patience for more tedious studies, while Brian fancied himself more of a scientist than an exterminator.

As they neared the stranger, the dog on his left turned and began to snarl at the ‘busters. Brian stopped dead in his tracks, and Chris bumped into him. The resulting collision got the attention of the stranger, who, with the other dog, turned and glared.

The busters got to their feet and Brian drew his thrower. They stood there, eyeing the stranger, while the stranger eyed them back.

"What do you want?" asked Brian.

The stranger just stared back in reply. Suddenly, he pointed at the logo on Chris' arm.

"Uhh, yeah, we're um, the Ghostbusters?" said Chris.

The stranger just stared upwards until large white and blue sparks began to shoot from is eyes.

"This can't be good," lamented Brian, right before twin bolts of deep blue lightning shot out of the strangers eyes and into the clouds above.

"Definitely not good!" cried Chris as he ran for cover.

The clouds began to swirl, and the sky turned a deep purple. Chris and Brian set up between two parked cars and aimed their proton guns carefully. Brian glanced behind him, a small crowd was forming, drawn, most likely, by the sirens of the Ectomobile, which were still running.

"Fire on three?" asked Chris in a worried tone.

"One...Two...THREE!" counted Brian, turning his gaze back to the stranger. Both busted fired, and the streams, arced wildly back and forth, forcing the new ‘busters to brace themselves. Before the streams could reach the stranger, a large, horned beast, ripped with muscles and a head jammed with teeth, burst forth through the sky in a flash of lightning and got caught in the beams.

"Not exactly what we were aiming for, but still good" remarked Chris, reaching for his trap. The crowd cheered, not realizing that it was not the intended target.

"It's another terror dog. This is bad. Very bad." said Brian flatly. Suddenly, there was another flash and another terror dog appeared.

"Uh oh..." trailed Chris. The flashes continued, getting faster and faster, until there were over twenty of the beasts in a matter of seconds. The beasts were attacking civilians at random, and although the flashes had slowed, it was clear that they were not going to stop anytime soon.

"Minions of the Traveller, protect your master!" The stranger began to rant.

"Well, I suppose that means he's in control of them. As if there was ever any doubt..." trailed Chris.

"...we will take this world and it's puny inhabitants..."

"Indeed." replied Brian. "The flashes are slowing. Perhaps he can only bring forth so many?"

"...they shall be roasted in the depths of a sloar..."

"It does stand to reason that, whoever this guy is, his power is limited in our dimension. Did you happen to notice what he called those things?" asked Chris.

"...apocalypse shall come forth..."

"Minions of the Traveller. You don't think he means--" Brian was cut off suddenly by the stranger who had begun to shout.

"THE FORMLESS DESTRUCTOR WILL PREVAIL!" cried the stranger, ending his rant. He turned and fled. Brian leapt over the hood of the parked car, and lunged after him, firing his proton gun wildly, attempting to cut him off. The stranger turned and began to run back towards Brian. Brian, shocked by the sudden changed in course, fired and caught him full stream. For a brief second the stranger look mildly amused, before throwing Brian thirty yards back with twin bolts of lightning.

Chis watched in disbelief as Brian was thrown back . "Apparently," thought Chris, "This guy has an immunity to proton streams."

There was no way Chris could hold him on his own. He tried to stay low as he unclipped a section of his belt, wrapping his fingers around a sleek metallic ball about the size of an orange. He felt around the the ribs on the top of the ball, keeping his eye on the stranger at all times, and placed his thumb on a tiny red button. Holding his breath, and shaking a bit of sweat from his brow, he armed the PowerTrap bomb.

"Soon as that bastard gets near to me, I'm gonna fry his ass..." Chris whispered to himself. As the stranger neared, Chris lobbed the heavy weapon forward, hitting the him square in the chest, with a dull thud. The PowerTrap promptly fell to the ground with no effect. The stranger kept running, but as he passed Chris, he turned and looked back, and called to the terror dogs one last time:

"Return to your master!"

The terror dogs all stopped their destruction, and ran back through the portal. Although all the terror dogs had returned to whatever dimension they came from, the portal did not close. Deep blues and purples shimmered in the wide circle. Every now and then a bolt of deep blue lightning would crackle through the portal, causing it to grow slightly.

Brian slowly limped over to where Chris was now standing. He was holding the charred PowerTrap. "The thing just got fried when it hit him."

"Maybe my design isn't all that great..." said Brian half-heartedly.

"Or maybe he was just too damn powerful for it." replied Chris.

"Whatever it was, we need to send a bulletin to GBI about this...not to mention find a way to close that portal."

"I got a good look at the guy when he ran past me," stated Chris, "It was Hicks."
Ghostbusters UK

May 27th, 2004
12 days until the end of the world.
England (10:36pm)
"Welcome to Britain," Greeted the cheery staff member who was checking the passports of the passengers as they disembarked from BA Flight 884. "Please state the nature of your visit, business or pleasure?"

The man she was talking to paused for a moment, as if choosing his words carefully.

"Pleasure." He replied with a slight hint of amusement. He then gave her his passport, she checked it, stamped it with a rubber stamp and handed it back.

"Enjoy your stay, sir." She replied.

"I'm sure I will." The man replied and gave her a smile. She couldn't quite put it down...but someting about that smile made a shiver run up and down her spine.
May 28th, 2004
11 days until the end of the world.
England (5:46pm)
The two teams of Ghostbusters UK sat in the recreation room. It was nearly time for the shift change so the Day Shift was rounding up their activities as the Graveyard Shift prepared themselves for twelve hours of duty. This was how things usually happened...though sometimes people stayed up longer then they were meant too...which had led to some unusual incidents over the previous year. Next to the door of the rec room, a blue light began to flash. This signified that the Day Shift had ended, and that the Graveyard Shift had begun.

"Right..." Ben King Snr replied. "Here's the duty roster...plus a few tasks here and there that need to be done by active Ghostbusters..." He explained as he handed a clipboard to Dr. Vincent Belmont, the Graveyard Shift's leader.

"Understood." Vincent replied. "We'll brief you in the morning if anything happens."

"Thanks." Ben replied, he then slung his drained Proton Pack onto his shoulder and walked out of the room in the direction of the garage where he'd set it up for a recharge.

"Iain...before I forget..." Vincent looked over at GBUK's second in command. "We need to have a look over the Third Floor of the East Wing...in case we need to start developing it."

"Sure...just yell when you need me." Iain replied. With that said he left the room. Suddenly the room was sent into a commotion as a alarm bell began to ring. The Graveyard Shift charged out of the rec room and towards the reception.

"You guys have a job in..." Ben King Jnr paused as he read the note. "Nottingham...there's a ghost haunting a chruch there...sounds like a Poltergeist...the details are all there." He handed the note to Vincent.

"Thank-you...collect the Ecto-visors...we'll need them." He replied as the team made their way through the building's kitchen/dining area on their way to the garage/equipment area.

(6:01pm)

As Iain climbed the staircase he paused on the Second Floor landing and looked up towards the Third Floor. He moved along to the staircase to the Third Floor and climbed it. About half of the Third Floor was in use. The West Wing housed the library and VIP quaters...however the East Wing had remained derelict...partly due to a lack of funds to develop it and no need to use it...or at least there hadn't been a requirement when the HQ had been set up...but it had been determined that sooner or later they would need to develop it into a workable part of the HQ building.

He walked over to the metal door and pushed it open. The area was in a mess. Ceramic tiles and other parts of debris littered the floor as they hadn't been cleared away. As he walked, Iain shivered. He didn't know why but this part of the building gave him the creeps...it was so dark and miserable that something could hide there and be right on top of him before he knew what happened...of course...they had systems set up to tell them if anything was there that should'nt've been there. Still...there was something in the air that he didn't like. He approached the end of the hallway and stopped.

He studied the rooms to his left and right. On his right were the remains of what looked like some kind of testing room...and to his left a room which had been marked up as 'Solitary Confinement' on the building's floorplans. He entered the room. Sooner or later they'd need to conduct some type of examination...see what the rooms could be used for.

He paused. The rubber padding in the room had been decaying since the place had been shut down...but it still sqeaked when stood on...except for one place. He walked back to the door, and then moved towards the center of the room.

Squeak. Squeak. Squeak. Squeak. Squeak. Squeak.

He re-walked that path several times, each time the pronounced difference in the sqeaking floor was audible in the same place. He stooped down and felt around the rubber padding. To his surprise he found one of the large rummer squares had come loose...revealing a large black hole in it's place. He extracted a penlight from his field belt and shon it into the hole. There was dust...and dirt...and what's that! Or...sorry...just more dirt.

"Hmmm." He mused, poking the shaft of light into the gloom. It strayed across something large and dusty. Iain placed the small penlight on the rubber-covered floor and put a hand into the hole in the floor. He wrestled for several minutes to snag the object, and then he finally got it. He pulled it out into the gloom and studied it. It was a book...a large one at that. Hardback...and it had obviously seen better days.

There was a strange language written on the cover, a language Iain didn't know. He stood up, grabbing his penlight as he went. For now he'd keep the thing locked up in his lab until he could run some tests on it in the morning...it could prove interesting.

(6:25pm)

Tommy turned over in his bed...something wasn't right. There was something tugging at the back of his mind...he frowned...it was...it was...

"Fire!" Tommy bolted upright...he could heard the fire alarm as it's shrill cry sounded outside in the hallway.

"Shit." He swore and jumped out of bed, following Ben and Roger as they charged down the corridor. They charged down into the reception area and followed the smoke to Iain's lab. Inside the found him pouring the contents of a fire extinguisher onto a rapidly burning pile of papers...after a few moments the fire was out and the alarm was dead. "Would someine tell me just what happened!" Tommy shouted.

"Well...err..." Iain began, scratching the back of his head. "I don't know."

"What do you mean you don't know?" Tommy fumed. "There was a fire in your lab and you didn't know what caused it...or that it had even started?"

"Well, I wouldn't quite say that it's more like... yeah you're right." Iain replied.

"Godammit..." Tommy swore. "Then at least find out what caused that fire...in the morning?" Tommy asked.

"Yeah...sure." Iain replied sitting down at the now scortched desk.

"Hey," Ben replied, clamping a hand on Tommy's shoulder. "Look on the bright side...we've had a successful Fire Drill at the expense of some papers...I say we've had a good bit of luck."

"Always trying to find a way to get everyone out of trouble, aren't you?" Tommy asked with a non-impressed look on his face.

"Hey...you owe it to these guys, they follow you into seven shades of living hell every week...I say small accidents like this are a by product."

"Remind me...and you don't need to see a shrink?" Tommy asked.

"My meeting is next thursday...I swear." He held up a hand in defense as a big grin appeared on his face. "Just get some sleep...it's only..." He looked at his watch. "Okay...it's nearly eight...you can still get a half hour's worth of sleep."

"I think I'll pass." Tommy replied as they reached the kitchen.

(7:02pm)

"I just can't work out what could've caused that fire." Iain replied to Roger as he studied a partially-melted PKE Meter. He then looked at the scortched desk...and then he rotated his head and looked over at the book. After looking at the book he turned back to the PKE Meter and then the desk. "No...it could'nt have been...could it?"

"Couldn't what?" Roger asked.

(7:45pm)

Iain sat at his workbench as he applied a screwdriver to the back of the PKE Meter's fire damaged case. He removed the back plate and studied the interior circuitry. He'd been wanting to purchase some of the new Mark 3.0 PKE Meters...however the team was still using the Mark 2.1s.

The Mark 2.1s were based off of the redesigned appearance and construction of the PKE Meter designed at the New York Head Office in 1997. However the Mark 2.1 was much more safety-proofed then the Mark 2.0 of the 1984-1989 period of GBI's operating. Iain picked up a pair of tweezers and began to prod about inside the charred interior of the PKE Meter.

"Hmm." He mused. He then ran his stool over to a bookcase which contained tomes, textbooks and GBI equipment manuals. He slid a hand across the spines of the books until he reached a particular book titled: 'PKE Meter: Operation, Repair and Calibration. THIRD EDITION'. He pulled the textbook out of the bookcase and opened the book to the contents page. He scanned the lines of text until he found the entry for the PKE Meter Mark 2.1. He then opened the book at the appropriate page and studied the diagram of the interior circuitry. He then read the details on circuit damage.

"Circuit damage is usually the result of an overload of PKE energy. However, circuit damage has been recorded in the past due to overcharging of the built-in battery storage...for more details on overcharging please see the appendix on Electrical Problems, Paragraph Two. The most common difference in the PKE Meter Mark 2.1 (1997) from the previous incarnations of the PKE Meter is it's electronics layout, and the addition of a surge protector which can combat against the overloads created by PKE powered matricies of certain varieties...for more details please see Casefile GBNY-1983-1/103, GB codeword: WATT. However, this system is less protected for overloads then the Mark 3.0 PKE Meter (Introduced in 2003) which is now equipped with a redundancy circuit designed to protect the interior circuitry from overload, at present the Mark 3.0 PKE Meter is the most up to date varient of the design investigated and then eventually constructed by New York staff member Professor Egon Spengler during his time as a student at Columbia University in 1973..."

Iain looked back at the PKE Meter's interior...if he'd got the gist of it...then something may've overloaded the interior workings of the PKE Meter...and if so...what? He slid his stool over to a metal desk near the door and opened a drawer. He then pulled out a second Mark.3 which he had stored in the lab. He then stood by the door and switched it on. For a few moments the PKE Meter worked fine...then suddenly the screen was maxed out and a small explosion erupted from the back of the device.

"Ya!" Iain dropped the flaming device, he then snagged the fire extinguished and put out the fire. He then looked in the direction he had pointed the PKE Meter...and spotted the book with the strange language on the title.

(7:55pm)

"Okay...I think...think I've found the source of the fire." Iain announced as he entered the break room, charred PKE Meter in hand. "Now...do you want the good news...or the bad news?" Iain asked. Tommy, perched in one of the armchairs with a copy of Top Gear Magazine, placed the magazine in his lap, over by the card table Ben paused in his game of Solitare to turn and listen to what Iain was about to say.

"Bad news first." Tommy replied. Iain blanched.

"I really think you'd want to know the good news first." Iain replied hesitantly. Tommy released a slightly irritated sigh and then looked straight at Iain.

"Okay...what's the good news?" He asked.

"Okay...good news is the fire was caused by the PKE Meter..." He held up the charred PKE Meter. "This PKE Meter." He then handed the PKE Meter to Tommy who took it, turned it over in his hand, handed it to Ben to examine and then turned to face Iain. "Okay...now what is the bad news?" Tommy asked.

"What caused that..." He pointed at the PKE Meter which Ben was holding. "And another PKE Meter to burst into flames."

"You know those things cost thirty pounds to replace?" Tommy asked shrewdly.

"Err...yeah." Iain replied. "Do you guys want to see what I'm talking about or not?!" Iain asked with a slight hint of annoyance.

"Sure." Tommy replied, getting up from the chair, moments later Ben followed, charred PKE in hand as they went to Iain's lab.

(8:12pm)

"I was poking around the third floor of the East Wing last night...and I found this book hidden under the padded floor." Iain explained as they entered the lab and walked towards a metal work table set in the centre of the room, sat upon it was the book Iain had found...in the daylight it seemed even more ominous then it had at night. The book was old, it's leather spine was creased along the edges, the brown leather was stained in places, the pages inside the book had yellowed and there was a slightly musky oder to it. Ben and Tommy studied the book. Tommy began to reach for it but retracted his hand.

"You sure this thing...it isn't gonna make my flesh fry or anything?" Tommy asked...understandably worried.

"I carried that thing down last night and nothing happened." Iain replied.

"Oh....okay." Tommy replied.

"I do suggest..." Iain interupted. "That you wear these." He held out a pair of rubber gloves to Tommy who took them, slid them on and then gently lifted the cover of the book. Inside were lines upon lines of written scrawl in a language Tommy didn't even have a hope of comprehending.

"You talked to 'Spooky' about seeing if he can work this out?" Tommy asked.

"Not yet...I was hoping to catch him before we knocked off though." Iain replied, he then seemed to vanish into thought for a few minutes. "I don't like it."

"Don't like what?" Ben asked.

"This." He gestured at the book. "Anything which has a PKE level large enough to fry a 'meter is bad news...you remember that casefile...it was the eighties...the New York office was on a call to a woman who might've known something about some weird goings on in the New York area...and there was a piece of paper that caused Professor Spengler's PKE Meter to explode."

"I think I know the one you mean." Ben replied.

"Do you have any idea what language it's written in? From the cover I can tell it's not written in English." Tommy asked.

"I've cross referenced it with the online translators...it had Google stumped...I've even gone through all of my books and the only thing it seemed to match was...well...Sumerian...and I'd be lucky if I knew what 'Sumerian' was in Sumerian." Iain replied honestly. "But I can't tell if it's actually Sumerian...while some of the characters are the same if it is the same language then it's written in something older then my books cover."

"I can see why you're hesitant, Iain." Tommy replied, turning to face Iain. "What do you want to do?" He asked.

"Well...I don't want to do anything until I get Vincent's opinion on this." Iain replied honestly.

"Opinion on what, exactly?" A voice asked, making all three Ghostbusters visibly jump.

"Jesus...Vincent." Tommy replied, cathing his breath.

"Yes, I have that effect on people," Vincent grinned as he strode over to join his fellow Ghostbusters. "What do we have here?"

"A book." Ben replied bluntly.

"Which makes PKE Meters burn." Tommy added. Vincent raised an eyebrow in curiosity.

"Really?" He replied, he extracted a pair of rubber gloves from a box full of them, slipped them on and began to study the book underneath Iain's illuminated magnifying glass. "Yes...indeed..." Vincent commented. "Most definately..." He continued. "Uh-huh." He replied, pointing to a passage in the strange script. "Facinating!" Vincent exclaimed, much to the chagrin of his fellow Ghostbusters. Tommy coughed loudly to get Vincent's attention.

"Oh! Beg my pardon." He turned to face them, taking a moment to wipe his glasses. He then folded his arms across his chest as he turned his full attention to them. "It's amazing! It's a grimoire!" he said exitedly.

"A grim-what?" Tommy asked with a quizzical look.

"No....Grimoire...this is only an educated guess, as I'm not as well versed in this particular dead language as some...but from the dialect...the accent...the spelling and the style of script...I'd hazard a guess and say it's Sumerian...however I'd want a second opinion before I'd put it in writing." Vincent explained, as he paced the room.

"I'm making a very wild guess there's only one expert in Sumerian that we readily know." Iain asked.

"Do you need to even guess the name?" Vincent replied with a wry smile.

"I suppose not." Iain replied thoughtfully.

"I recommend you send a message to Head Office as soon as possible...we need to communicate this discovery in the likely event this becomes something bigger then it already suggests." Vincent added.

"Yeah...I'll get Junior onto it..." Ben replied, he then left the room.

"This discovery does concern me though..." Vincent replied as he rubbed his chin thoughtfully.

"Iain was saying the exact same thing." Tommy replied. "How did a book written in Sumerian end up in our loft?" Tommy asked.

"That is as worrying a question as to where it came from." Vincent agreed.

(8:54pm)

"Dad...there may be a problem." Ben King Jnr spoke as he entered the lab.

"What kind of problem?" Ben asked.

"You know how NTL is our internet service provider?" Ben King Junior asked.

"Yeah." Ben King Snr replied.

"Well I just tried to connect to the internet and then go onto the company's Hotmail account...and it wasn't working. I tried a few more times, checked the connections...eveything was sound so I rang up NTL's hotline..."

"And?" Tommy asked.

"Seems some...'skilled' workmen managed to slice through a cable while doing some work at Stansted Airport...the entire NTL service for the south east has been disrupted."

"What?!" Iain asked incredulously.

"Yeah..." Ben replied. "They said they were hoping to get the regular service back up by tomorrow evening...but it means we can't contact head office." Ben King Jnr informed them.

"That rules out the new software the tech staff at GBIweb have been working on...for the moment." Vincent replied thoughtfully.

"Marvellous." Tommy muttered. "So we can't communicate this to New York until tomorrow evening...and that's only a possible estimate?" He asked in disbelief.

"I guess so." Ben replied grumpily.

"It's times like this where I swear we should've gone with BT." Tommy replied irritably. "But what if that thing starts causing other things to burst into flames?" He asked, pointing at the book.

"It's a chance we're gonna need to take." Iain replied honestly.

"I can set up some magical wards to prevent anything else going into the waste disposal from spontanius combustion...however...all we can do for the moment apart from that is try to perform some translation work...and try to find out this book's origins...we'll need to find who brought it here and if it was here when this building was operating as a institution." Vincent concluded.
>
May 29th, 2004
10 days until the end of the world.
GBUK HQ (11:00pm)
Vincent dropped his pen and rubbed at his eyes, he'd been working since nine 'o' clock in the morning trying to decipher as much of the book as he could...which irritably wasn't a large portion of the total text...he needed an expert to colaborate with...he needed Egon Spengler. He stood up and exited the lab, careful to replace his glasses as he went. He moved towards the reception area and greeted the desk jockey.

"Master King...I trust the internet connection has been re-established?" He asked.

"Err...I'm not sure...I guess it wouldn't hurt to give it a try though...it is getting on..." He studied his watch and performed a slightly comical 'taken back' action at the time. "...past ten 'o' clock."

"Understood." Vincent replied, he then turned and walked towards his lab/office. He opened the door, closed it behind him and made his way to the office part of the lab. He sat down and booted up the computer, a few minutes later the NTL: Freedom connection window appeared on the screen. Vincent paused for a moment and then clicked on the connect button.

A moment later he was rewarded with the sounds of the computer's modem dialing up to the service provider's servers and successfully logging onto the internet. Vincent moved the mouse cursor over to the AIM logo displayed on the desktop and within moments he was logged onto one of the biggest instant messaging systems on the planet. Under the Active Users list was one particular name that he needed to contact to get a message to the New York office. The name went under: GBIExecutive.

DrVincentBelmont: Greetings, Richard.
GBI Executive: Vincent...good to hear from you! It's been too long.
DrVincentBelmont: Unfortunantly I must dismiss with the pleasentaries...we have a rather serious situation on our hands.
GBIExecutive: Understood, Vincent...what do you need?
DrVincentBelmont: I need to get into contact with Professor Spengler...preferably over the new system...discretion is required...if possible.
GBIExecutive: The system should work...the web monkeys have been working on it non-stop...I'm afraid things have been a bit of a mess since Dr. Roberts relinquished his role within the technical side of GBI...but it wouldn't be here without what he started...I'll give Professor Spengler a phone call, I'll tell him it's a priority message from you.
DrVincentBelmont: Much thanks, Richard.

As Vincent waitied for Richard to reply back he logged himself onto GBI's newly-developed...but still beta stage priority encrypted instant messenger system...and idea which Professor Spengler had been working on alongside Richard Roy and the 'web monkeys' of the GBI website...which was also linked to the online editions of Tobin's Spirit Guide and the system established the previous year known soley as: T.O.B.I.N. Within five minutes Vincent's AIM window chimed and he looked at what Richard had to say:

GBIExecutive: Message relayed and response given. He will be online within a few minutes.

> Vincent typed up a quick reply of thanks and logged off of AIM...he didn't want any distractions while he communicated the situation.

DrVincentBelmont has been sent a private instant message from:
ProfESpengler.

Accept Message?

Vincent clicked on Yes and was instantly taken to a window which resembled the AIM dialogue box. The only differences being that the colours were muted greys and reds...and the long-familiar logo of GBI was displayed proudly in the top right corner.

ProfESpengler: Vincent?
DrVincentBelmont: Professor! Glad I could reach you so quickly.
ProfESpengler: Indeed. What is going on?
DrVincentBelmont: Right to the point...
DrVincentBelmont: Two days ago we found something in the Asylum
DrVincentBelmont: An old book
ProfESpengler: Hm...
DrVincentBelmont: Suspicious enough, but it gets better
DrVincentBelmont: It's blown out Iain's PKE Meter about three times
DrVincentBelmont: And I've finally figured out what language it's written in
ProfESpengler: I take it it's not Latin, then?
DrVincentBelmont: No.
DrVincentBelmont: It's Sumerian

There was a brief pause where Egon didn't reply.

DrVincentBelmont: Professor?
ProfESpengler: So no idea as to the content?
DrVincentBelmont: Egon, I've translated the first two pages...which took me the better part of 12 hours,
DrVincentBelmont: I might have it translated in about a year...and I don't feel it can wait that long.
DrVincentBelmont: I'm too slow with Sumerian. I never really got a feel for it like you.
DrVincentBelmont: Egon...I need Dr. Spengler.
DrVincentBelmont: You are one of the world experts in the Sumerian language
ProfESpengler: No need for excessive pleasantries, Vincent
ProfESpengler: Of course I will take a look at it.
DrVincentBelmont: Thank you, Sir.
DrVincentBelmont: Though it will be a trick...
ProfESpengler: How so?
DrVincentBelmont: I wonder if the scanner will work if it's that hot with PKE...
ProfESpengler: Nonsense.
ProfESpengler: It's potentially incredibly hazardous
ProfESpengler: I will come to England to inspect it personally


Vincent quickly got up and moved to where he believed he'd seen Iain last, the break room. To his eternal gratitude the member of the RAF was in the break room, resting against the wall of the room.

"I've managed to contact Professor Spengler and relay the situation...he will be coming here." He explained. He then quickly left the room with Iain in hot persuit.

"Wait...what?" Iain asked. He followed Vincent back into Vincent's lab and watched as the member of Ghostbusters: Manhattan resumed his conversation with the Ghostbuster across the Atlantic Ocean.

DrVincentBelmont: I won't lie to you, sir. That is news of tremendous relief to us. ProfESpengler: I thought it might be
ProfESpengler: It will take me some time to get things arranged here
ProfESpengler: But I should be leaving in the ECTO-4 by tomorrow
DrVincentBelmont: Thank you, sir.
ProfESpengler: Until I see you in person...

ProfESpengler is now logged off


Moments later Vincent signed off of the system and then disconnected from the internet.

"Okay...could you now give me the long explanation of what just happened?" Iain asked.

"I have relayed the discovery of the book and the following events to Professor Spengler...as he is the most reknowned expert on Sumerian that we have ready contact with...and he has informed me that he will be journeying here to take a look at the book." Vincent explained.

"Okay..." Iain replied, taking in what Vincent had said. "I'll inform Tommy and the others." He replied and then left the lab.
May 30th, 2004
9 days until the end of the world.
England (1:26am)
GBUK HQ Kitchen...a place to eat...drink...and brief. During most hours the room served as the dining/lunching/breakfast area where one team or another would congregate depending on the time of day. However it's lesser known use was as a conference room whenever the need for one was called, at present every member of Ghostbusters UK, acting Staff Member and Civilian Worker, had been brought into the kitchen of the building and were ready to be briefed on the most recent events.

"Thanks for coming guys...especially on such short notice." Tommy spoke at the head of the meal table. Sat to his left was Iain Bennett and to his right was Vincent Belmont who was studying a set of notes between listening to Dayshift's member and franchise Co-CEO. "We've got some developments on the situation with that book Iain found and we wanted to make sure everyone was up to date. Vincent...if you could start the ball rolling." Tommy asked.

"Okay." Vincent began. "As you are well aware, Iain discovered a book located within part of the abandoned section of the East Wing a few days ago, a book of frightening potential if the later details continue to mention certain names that the earlier passages make reference to. As you may have heard it is written in Sumerian...and unfortunantly while I know certain languages which aren't taught in a university outside of Arkham, I'm not an expert on Sumerian. Such is the case that I have taken the liberty of inviting Professor Egon Spengler to view the book...which means he will be making arrangements to travel here from New York tomorrow." Vincent explained.

"It means we're going to have to be on our best behaviour guys...that means you as well Bestler."

"What the hell?" Adam asked in surprise.

"It also means we're putting all of our caseloads on hold until further notice guys..." Iain added.

"Agreed...that is why it's your task," Vincent directed his view at Ben King Jnr. "Master King, to contact our clients to inform them of the extended delay. Until otherwise stated the cases will be delayed for about a period of 30 days or so...once the situation is has been concluded then the cases can be reassessed due to their priority."

"If the situation is winable." Roger Johnson commented sacrastically.

"Okay...but I don't like the idea of having irate customers ready to cut my head off." Ben King Jnr replied. "They tend to send hate mail y'know?"

"With that said...we will unfortunately be cancelling all leave until further notice...we need as many staff members in operation as possible depending on how things work out." Tommy paused as he went through a set of papers detailing the staff members. "It may also be worth putting the Reserve Ghostbusters on duty as well."

"Yeah." Iain agreed.

"Are you sure?" Rosey Collins asked. "I mean...sure...we know how to use the equipment...but on a fairly basic level. Seriously - come on - can you imagine me loose on the streets with an electromagnetic nuclear proton defribulator, or whatever you want to call it? 'Oops - there goes another office block!'" She took a moment to remove her glasses and give her forehead a brief massage, once this was finished she replace the glasses on her nose and over her green eyes.

"This isn't a laughing matter, Rosey," Iain said sternly.

"Right," Rosey mock-saluted him. "Of course not. Sorry, boss."

"While normally I'd be reluctant..." Tommy replied. "We'll need as many people as possible." He took a moment to study some notes he'd been making. "For now we're to go about our regular duties and stuff...Vincent...Iain...I want you two to continue your work on the book...even if there aren't any Sumerian experts in this building the more that you guys translate the better our options are."

"Understood." Vincent replied.

"Yeah." Iain added.

"I will try research this guy as best I can...see if we can find out where this quarry was he worked at. The rest of you, for the moment...I want you to perform tests on the equipment...make sure it's in tip top condition...once that's done that I suppose get as much relaxation in the break room as you can, we don't know when we might get the opportunity again. Is there anything that someone wants to bring into discussion?" There was no answer. "Okay...let's get to work." The team broke up and made their way to their intended places where they'd be doing their work until Professor Spengler arrived.

"I don't know...all this concern over a book? I mean it could be nothing." Adam asked.

"Yeah...and that little leak in the side of the Titanic meant nothing." Roger retorted. "C'mon Adam...this thing could be big."

"What can I say?" Adam asked as they walked down the corridor to the Break Room. "I crack jokes when I'm in nervous terror."

(2:45am)

"LIVE FIRE!" Iain shouted, moments later a proton beam shot across the concrete-clad room and incinerated a cardboard cut-out of a ghost, a cheesy but none-the-less effective target until they could use a ghost which could sit still...and not many franchises had one of those.

"I still say using a real ghost would work...or even just using the B.O.O.M. Stick to cover up the cardboard cut-out." Ben King Snr replied as he switched off his Proton Gun and slid his earmuffs around his ears...the acoustics in the room meant that firing a Proton Gun could cause a person to go partially deaf for about half a day.

"Ben...it's cheap and effective." Iain replied as he slid his own earmuffs down around his neck. "Besides the B.O.O.M. Stick's still in the testing stage...we don't know how well it'll operate in the field." Iain refered to the B.O.O.M Stick or Battery Operated Optical Manipulator...a maglite-sized portible holo-projector which had been pieced together from the team's Spirit Photographer a few months back.

"Hmph." Ben grunted. "This gun's good...beam's aligned and the feedback's okay." He reported, he then shrugged off the Proton Pack and placed it on a workbench where he then plugged in an industrail cable to a transformer which allowed the Ghostbusters to charge up the power cells without serious feedback overload...a problem discovered by the New York Ghostbusters during the pack's first attempted test. "That's number twelve checked." Ben replied.

"Right." Iain replied and made a note on a clipboard which displayed a check list of all of the equipment. "Are all the traps charged?" He asked.

"One sec." Ben replied as he moved over to check the charging area, there were two charging ares in total. One was based in the Containment Unit area, the other was based in the building's Armoury/Testing Range which was situated in the basement. "Most of 'em are charged...but thirteen's acting up again." As if to illustrate the point he slapped a textbook against the side of a trap casing and a LED indicating the charge flickered on.

"Probably dump that one in the 'shop for now." Iain replied as he ticked some of the boxes on the sheet. They both looked up as the building's resident goth stepped into through the door into the room, which was seperated from the main target range by a bulletproof glass corridor which doubled as a viewing gallery.

"Hey." He greeted.

"Yo." Iain greeted in reply as Ben turned back to the task of removing the faulty trap casing.

"How's the equipment check going?" Eric asked.

"Good." Iain replied, he then took a quick look at the sheet. "All of the packs are calibrated and working fine...though that trap's still giving us grief." Iain explained.

"I'll get onto that...probably a problem with the built-in battery pack." Eric supposed.

"Yeah...how are things your end?" Iain asked in return.

"Both Ectos are gassed up and ready...Adam, Eric and myself went over both of thm plus the engines...everything's in good condition."

"Good to hear." Iain replied. He made a few more quick notes on the sheet of paper and then glanced at his watch. "We'd better be getting upstairs...I need to get back to my translation work."

"Right." Eric replied.

(8:50am)

During a short break from his preparation activities at around ten minutes to nine, Iain Bennett was surfing the web on the computer in his office. He was just about to sign off before he remembered to check his email...well...the company's email. He started up MSN and took a look in the Inbox. While it was usually the desk jockey's job...sometimes he found it passed the time to simply keep up to date.

"Let's see..." Iain quietly spoke as he looked at the email. There were three emails about product design...including an annoucement covering the Proton Pistols...something to do with the annual CAT scans coming up in a few months...a message in relation to GBI's big anniversary which wasn't too long into the future...and a message about an AWOL Ghostbuster? Iain was intrigued, he had heard about the former GBI Franchise, the Manapalan Ghostbusters going rogue but he hadn't heard much about any single member...excluding a former comrade of NOMAD. He clicked on the email and studied the message.

"From: GBIExecutive@AOL.com
To: JayAbbottCGB@AOL.com, EctoCanada@hotmail.com, JessieD@hotmail.com, FriscoGB@hotmail.com, JoeyGBWC@AOL.com, RonDaniels@hotmail.com, SWGGB@Yahoo.com, GBC@hotmail.com, CDGB@AOL.com, JeffZ@Yahoo.com, WKetchum@Yahoo.com, KevinPIE@AOL.com, CMinnesotaGB@hotmail.com, Durgan@Yahoo.com, GBLincoln@Tiscani.com, GBNJ@hotmail.com, NJUK@Hotmail.com, WZeddemoreFtArnold@Hotmail.com, ESpengler@GBINewYork.com, DopeyDog@Yahoo.com, PVenkman@AOL.com, BoHolbrook@hotmail.com, DeCiccoLIGB@AOL.com, FHGB@Tiscali.com, MThomasCleveland@Hotmail.com, LVGB@AOL.com, MTGB@Yahoo.com, ETGB@Yahoo.com, GBAustin@Hotmail.com, Paranorman@GBIweb.com, GBVirginia@GBIweb.com, GhostbustersUK@hotmail.com.

Subject: AWOL GBI Staff Member

All,
GBI Franchise West Coast Devision has reported one of their staff members going AWOL around May 23rd-25th, the missing staff member in question goes by the name of Jeremy Hicks. GBI Franchise Staff Members are to remain on the look out during the operation of standard practice for Jeremy Hicks if they spot him or activities in relation to his disapearance. His appearance is roughly 5' 6'', slight build, brown swept-back hair, glasses and blue eyes. A man matching Hicks' recently spotted in the Downtown Toronto area where he had an altercation with E.C.T.O. Canada members Drs Walker and Davis. If Hicks is spotted and confirmed then he is to be apprehended for questioning, however it is believed that he is armed and extremely dangerous so staff members are being advised to use extreme caution during the aprehension process. If Jeremy Hicks is apprehended please restrain him and contact the Head Office in New York.

-Spengs.
(AKA Richard Roy)"


"Marvellous...we have to keep a watch out for some nutjob Ghostbuster while translating the book." Iain muttered as he continued to finish the reading the rest of the email.
Extreme Ghostbusters

May 29, 2004 (3:15pm, America, EST)
10 days until the end of the world.
The baby wriggled with growing displeasure as a tiny finger poked her in the belly again.

"Hm...fascinating..." the boy who owned the finger said.

The baby was a tiny, brown-skinned girl of about four months of age, dressed in a pink sleeper with Dora the Explorer on it.

The boy was only days shy of five, but tall for that age, and studied the baby with wide green eyes. He had unruly red hair featuring a squiggly tail in the back ("I can just about swear your hair must just grow that way. It explains a lot about your father's look" his mother had said more than once) and was dressed in shorts and a Power Rangers t-shirt.

"Johnathan!" the other girl in the room admonished him. "If you keep doing that she will start crying and Kylie will be mad at us!!!"

She was about the same age as the boy (truth to be told, almost exactly the same age--the difference measureable in a matter of minutes) and regarded the scene with eyes of the deepest blue. Her hair was finer than his, and spun of a rich blonde color. The purple shirt and red jumper she was wearing gave them an oddly matching appearance, which seemed even more appropriate when one looked closely at them: those different colored eyes nevertheless both held an intensity that was unmistakably shared by the other, and by the eyes of the man that fathered them...

"It's just an experiment, Edie..." Johnathan replied, making a dismissive noise. "I wanna see how she responds to stimulus, that's all..." and he poked the baby again.

A shrill, piercing cry was the result.

Both almost-five-year-olds looked up, panicked, as the door to the room was thrown open, allowing the entrance of a twenty-six year-old woman with a slight build and long, dark hair. She was wearing, as she almost always did, makeup that gave her a pale appearance ("Goth" is how they'd heard their Uncle Peter describe it). Right behind her was a three year old girl with the same brown skin as the baby girl, dressed in a frilly pink dress.

Even worse for the two children, right behind them was a woman with the boy's red hair and the girl's nose and jawline.

"Johnathan Chirstopher and Eden Marie Spengler, can I even leave you alone for three minutes?" Janine Melnitz Spengler chastised them, as Kylie Griffin picked up her younger daughter.

"Momma's here, Rose...no need to cry..."

"I was just touching her..." John tried to explain. "it wasn't hard or nothing...I ust wanted to see how many before she, y'know...did anything..."

"He poked her twelve times." Eden chimed in, not so much ratting her brother out (in her mind) as relaying the results of the experiment.

"You two..." Janine shook her head, looking over at Kylie and Rose.

"Rosey okay?" Conchita Rivera asked in a quiet but pleasant voice.

"She's okay, Chita...aren't you?" Kylie replied, holding Rose up. "C'mon...smile for Momma, huh?"

Janine surveyed the scene for a moment, then turned to the Twins. "Okay, everything's fine. Listen, it's almost time for your Uncle Peter to be on TV--why don't you go up there with Jessica and watch?"

"Uncle Peter's gonna be on TV again? He's been doing that a lot lately..." John noted.

"Come with us, Conchita!" Eden said, taking the younger girl's hand.

"Race you!!! Last one there is a doo-doo head accountant lawyer!!!" John shouted, taking off in a run.

"Johnathan!!! You walk now!!!" Janine shouted after him.

After a few minutes, Rose Rivera stopped crying and began to doze back off.

"They're just curious about babies, I guess..." Janine exhaled. "I guess that's totally natural."

"Even if they weren't genetically predisposed to be curious about, well, everything." Kylie nodded with a smirk.

Janine shook her head affectionately. "They come by that honestly after all...and Rose is the first real baby they've been aware of. They were only two when Conchita was born...they were too busy being babies themselves at that point."

"Well, being Spengler babies, which meant nailing down Algebra..." Kylie quipped, provoking laughter from both women.

Jessica was fending off the green, potato-shaped spirit that was inordinately interested in her popcorn.

She'd heard stories for years about the "slimy disgusting eating machine" from her father, and when she was about six she finally got to meet it. For Slimer, perhaps not surprisingly considering the source of Jessica's DNA, it was something akin to love at first sight.

For her part, she found Slimer extremely disgusting...but he tried so hard to make her like him she eventually relented and realized she actually liked the creature. Though she would be caught dead before admitting it. Yes, she was indeed Peter Venkman's daughter.

John bound up, jumped over the couch, and plopped right into the seat next to her, helping himself to a large handful of popcorn without even asking.

"You could at least ask, Johnny..." the eleven year-old said with mock disgust. Like them, she had inherited some tall genes (from her mother, in this case) and a mop of curly dark brown hair. She favored a rather informal, tomboyish style of dress, which contrasted with the subdued Eden and the downright frilly and girlish Conchita.

"Popcorn, Spengs?" Jessica asked Eden, tearing the bowl away from her brother and offering it to her.

"I believe I shall." Eden answered, making a big show of taking some and eating it slowly to tease John. "You want some, Conchita?"

"Si..." she responded simply, taking a few bites which she ate daintily.

A few minutes later Janine, Kylie, and Janine's husband--Professor Egon Spengler--appeared. "I begin to doubt that Roland, Eduardo, and Garrett will make it..." Egon said with some amusement. Now forty-six years of age, his hair was beginning to turn white from the ears down, but was still assembled in a style that his son's resembled, swirling at the top with a squiggly tail at the back. Still, the second team could swear Egon Spengler actually looked younger than he did when they first met him in 1997. "You watching it there at Fort Arnold?" he asked his cel phone.

"Oh yeah..." the tiny tenor of Ray Stantz came back. "Winston's got it up on the big screen..."

"It's starting! Hush!!!" Jessica said loudly.

The flashy logos of the AllmusicTV network came across the screen, and a forty-something woman dressed in clothing that was just a tad conspicuously trendy appeared.

"Thanks for joining us for this Allmusic TV news special! Twenty years ago this week the movie Ghostbusters was released, which was about the first case of the famous group of Professional Paranormal Investigators and Elimanators (try saying that five times fast). And you may remember how it was me who landed one of the first interviews with the famous leader of the Ghostbusters, Dr. Peter Venkman!!!

Footage came up of the same woman, albeit twenty years younger and wearing stylish Eighties clothes. Next to her was a man with dark hair, green eyes, and a brown and green suit. The screen read "Dr. Peter Venkman. February 11, 1984."

"Hey, gang, this is Corkie for Allmusic TV! And I'm talking to the original Ghostbuster, Dr. Peter Venkman!"

"I can't believe your Dad was ever that young..." John said.

"I can't believe it either." Jessica agreed.

"I can't believe how far he's gone to still look as young as he does." Janine rolled her eyes, whispering to Egon, provoking a brief chuckle out of her husband.

"Hello, youth of America!!!" Venkman said, flashing his cheshire grin.

"Peter, it's been six months since you guys beat up on Gomer..."

"Gozer"

"Right. So. What's your life like now?"

"Oh, you know, the usual. Just hanging out and saving the world. You know just last week we stopped some creep before he could put everyone in the world nighty-night..."

"Wow"

"It's a tough job, but somebody has to be paid incredibly well to do it. Right now we're working on opening offices in Los Angeles, London, Paris, and Tokyo now. Within a year, Ghostbusters will be worldwide."

"Sweet. My friend was at this club in Ibiza and she swears she saw the ghost of Jimi Hendricks high-fiving Elvis."

"Well, they had a lot in common."

"I know! Now...I have to ask you the question on everyone's mind."

"If it's about those Meryl Streep rumors, I really can't comment."

"Hee hee...no, no, it's not that. What's Louis Tully really like?"


There was a solid round of laughter from the room. "He's a doo doo head!!!" the Spengler Twins and Jessica chanted in unison. Janine just buried her face in her hands, an embarrassing memory or two resurfacing.

The scene shifted back to the older-looking version of Corkie. "Well, twenty years later, here I am at the Allmusic TV studios in Los Angeles, here with our very special guest--Dr. Peter Venkman, chairman of Ghostbusters International! I guess the offices in LA and London thing took, huh?"

Venkman was wearing an incredibly similar suit to the older interview, and save the extra lines on his face looked rather much the same (though everyone in the room suspected that the current hair color was artificially enhanced).

"At least he doesn't have to wear a rug like Grandpa Charlie..." Jessica said, downing a bit of popcorn. "You should've seen him at the Enron hearings a while back..."

"Well, Corkie, it sure did. I mean, it took a while--Ghostbusters International didn't take off until after we got back together seven years ago, and somehow the Paris and Tokyo offices never made it. But we got some great Ghostbusting teams in London, here in LA, and all over the United States and Canada."

"And I understand you're married with a couple kids now?"

"Yeah. My son Oscar and daughter Jessica--and I know they're watching right now. I promise you, I never dated Meryl Streep."


Jessica rolled her eyes. She knew her brother (technically half-brother) Oscar Wallance was watching at a friend's house, and was probably having the same reaction.

"Actually, all the Ghostbusters are married now--but let me tell you, that took some doing in one case."

"Doctor Spengler?"
Corkie guessed, giggling. "I tell you, my sister and half the girls in her science club had the biiiiggest crush on him"

"Ew, ick..." Eden said, sticking her tongue out.

"Hey, I can't fault the girls for taste..." Janine chimed in loudly. Egon cleared his throat and looked at the ceiling.

"And how is Louis Tully these days, anyway?" Corkie asked with a mischievous grin.

Venkman seemed to grapple with the question for a moment. "Well, after his fifteen minutes ran out he went to law school. Back in '88, when we got back together the first time, we hired him as our accountant and lawyer--he runs GBI's finances how. He's had some setbacks, but he's doing okay."

"I hear he got married a while back and it didn't work out."
Corkie asked.

"Oh Adonai..." Janine exhaled.

Venkman's brow narrowed. "All I'm gonna say about that is that it was something that never should've happened in the first place, and the situation is rectified. Let's leave it at that."

Corkie looked confused for a minute, and decided to wisely pursue a different line of questioning. "So I hear your son is in a rock band?"

Just about then, Egon's cel phone rang.

"Egon?" Janine whispered.

Egon looked at the display. "It's from GBI...a message to contact Vincent. Urgent."

"Vincent" meant Dr. Vincent Belmont, former employee of Ghostbusters New York, former leader of the Ghostbusters Manhattan franchise, and current temporary leader of one team of the Ghostbusters UK.

None of the others noticed as he left the room.

Egon went to his laboratory, jiggling the mouse to call up his computer's display. "Priority..." he muttered, and activated the unique, security-encrypted instant messaging program he and some of the GBI techs had developed (though Venkman liked to call it "AIMless")

Unsurprisingly, he saw that Vincent was online.

You are signed on as ProfESpengler. GBI encryption is ON
Send to: DrVincentBelmont
ProfESpengler: Vincent?
DrVincentBelmont: Professor! Glad I could reach you so quickly.
ProfESpengler: Indeed. What is going on?
DrVincentBelmont: Right to the point...
DrVincentBelmont: Two days ago we found something in the Asylum
DrVincentBelmont: An old book
ProfESpengler: Hm...
DrVincentBelmont: Suspicious enough, but it gets better
DrVincentBelmont: It's blown out Iain's PKE Meter about three times
DrVincentBelmont: And I've finally figured out what language it's written in
ProfESpengler: I take it it's not Latin, then?
DrVincentBelmont: No.
DrVincentBelmont: It's Sumerian


"Sumerian?" Egon said out loud.

DrVincentBelmont: Professor?
ProfESpengler: So no idea as to the content?
DrVincentBelmont: Egon, I've translated the first two pages...which took me the better part of 8 hours,
DrVincentBelmont: I might have it translated in about a year...and I don't feel it can wait that long.
DrVincentBelmont: I'm too slow with Sumerian. I never really got a feel for it like you.
DrVincentBelmont: Egon...I need Dr. Spengler.
DrVincentBelmont: You are one of the world experts in the Sumerian language
ProfESpengler: No need for excessive pleasantries, Vincent
ProfESpengler: Of course I will take a look at it.
DrVincentBelmont: Thank you, Sir.
DrVincentBelmont: Though it will be a trick...
ProfESpengler: How so?
DrVincentBelmont: I wonder if the scanner will work if it's that hot with PKE...
ProfESpengler: Nonsense.
ProfESpengler: It's potentially incredibly hazardous
ProfESpengler: I will come to England to inspect it personally


Egon noted that it took Vincent a full thirty seconds to respond. Perhaps he's informing the others...

DrVincentBelmont: I won't lie to you, sir. That is news of tremendous relief to us.
ProfESpengler: I thought it might be
ProfESpengler: It will take me some time to get things arranged here
ProfESpengler: But I should be leaving in the ECTO-4 by tomorrow
DrVincentBelmont: Thank you, sir.
ProfESpengler: Until I see you in person...
ProfESpengler is now logged off


Egon sighed and laid back in his chair. Sumerian almost always means trouble... he thought to himself. Anshar and Khishor...the Doomsday doorway...and of course Gozer...

Janine had quietly entered the room. "I know that look...how bad is it?"

"In all honesty, I don't know yet. It may be nothing...but I have this feeling..."

She snuggled up to him. "It's still weird to hear you say that. But in a good way..."

"A man who is not constantly learning is stagnant. And learning that there's more to life than logic was something you taught me."

She giggled and kissed him. "Now all I gotta do now is figure out how I'm gonna corral the kids all by myself for a few days..."

He laughed. "That, my Dear, is something I'm still learning myself..."
Ghostbusters UK

May 30th, 2004, England.
9 Days until the end of the world.
(12:25pm)
"Professor Spengler should be leaving New York any time now." Vincent Belmont commented as he studied his watch. "Unfortunately the Ecto-4's engine is nothing like that of a Jumbo Jet 747...and by my estimation it'll take around about sixteen hours to travel from New York to here..which means he'll be arriving around half past eight tomorrow morning...but that's only an estimation."

"Remind me never to take any trips to New York in that thing."

"It is rather unfortunate that the portal downstairs had to be cancelled out until we are sure nothing from the sub-basement passes through the...er...'hell hole'."

"Yeah." Iain agreed. "We'll sort that out when this thing's been resolved."

"Definately." Tommy agreed. "Sure those binding spells and the PKE Proximity Sensor will give us a bit of a warning...but we'll need to find something more concrete if we want to avoid a repeat of that incident. Anyway...getting back on track...keeping mind Vincent's estimation and probably a period of roughly eight hours of sleep...that'll give us around eight hours to prepare things here for Professor Spengler's arrival."

"Well...my lab's pretty much ready as is...though I could bring over the other angle-poise magnifier." Iain supposed.

"Good...I'll be working on those records...maybe the NHS has something to say about the 'English Patient'."

"Agreed." Vincent commented. The three Ghostbusters were gathered at the meal table in the kitchen as they discussed what there were going to do. "I don't suppose we have a spare landing pad, do we?" Vincent asked.

"Not unless I left it in my other jumpsuit." Tommy replied, patting down the various pockets he had. "Nope. Sorry."

"That means Professor Spengler's gonna need to land on somewhere flat...there should be some of the moorland to the East which can work...failing that there's always the road leading to the garages...anyone know just how big the Ecto-4 is?" Iain asked.

"My memory on the size of the vehicle doesn't contain an exact size...I think we should go with a flat section of the moors just to be safe." Vincent suggested.

"Right." Tommy agreed. "Is the equipment all charged up?"

"Well..." Iain paused to take a bite from a sandwich, they'd been eating lunch while discussing the plans for the next two days. "Ben and I tested and charged all the stuff...all the packs worked fine and are charged...most of the traps worked with no problem...though number thirteen's still acting up." He reported.

"Is someone going to look into that?" Tommy asked.

"Yeah...Eric's going to perform some of his...'magic' on it." Iain replied. Vincent chuckled slightly.

"And the Ectos?" Tommy asked.

"From what Eric told me they're all filled up and ready to go." Iain explained. "They even gave the engines a tune up."

"Excellent." Vincent approved. "What does that leave?" He asked.

"Let's see..." Tommy began. "We've still got translation work...that's your area."

"Yeah." Iain commented as he made some notes.

"Agreed." Vincent added.

"The research into the 'English Patient'...that's my area for now..." Tommy made some notes. "We need someone to go down to the Hell Hole...make sure that nothing...'unusual'...well...unusual for this place anyway....is going on down there...last thing we need is a different dimension trying to stage an invasion on us."

"Funny how you place became the centre of attention since we closed that formerly dorment portal at the Houses of Parliament." Iain replied with a lop-sided grin.

"Yeah." Tommy agreed. "Okay guys...I think that's everything...I'll be in my office if you need me." With that said the three Ghostbusters got up and went their ways, Tommy vanishing in the direction of his office in the West Wing and Iain and Vincnt moving to Iain's lab in the East.

(12:53pm)

Iain was still hunched over the book in his lab when he heard an odd crackling sound...which turned out to be the radio which was placed on a desk at the far side of the lab. He got up, leaving Vincent to continue his work as he went to investigate why the radio had begun to crackle.

"Ecto-4 to Ghostbusters UK...Ecto-4 to Ghostbusters UK...come in Ghostbusters UK, over." Even though there was interference and the sound of the voice was slightly distorted, Iain could recognise the voice as belonging to Professor Egon Spengler.

"Come in Ecto-4...reading you semi-loud and clear, over." Iain replied into the radio's handset.

"Mr. Bennett...it is good to hear your voice...at present the Ecto-4 is exiting America airspace, and is crossing the Atlantic Ocean." Egon reported.

"That's good to hear sir...have you experienced any problems, over." Iain asked.

"Apart from some rain and low cloud, none. Will expect to rendevous with your team at your HQ in eight hours time." Egon added.

"Understood sir...is there anything you will need before you arrive? Over." Iain asked.

"A set of plastic forensics gloves and a room." Egon requested.

"We'll arrange the VIP suite, over." Iain reported.

"Understood, I'll be putting the Ecto-4 onto autopilot now so I shall hopefully be sufficiently rested when I arrive in England. See you in the morning with the rest of your team Mr. Bennett, over and out." Egon replied and signed off, a few moments later Iain place the handset back in it's cradle and walked back over to Vincent.

"Problems?" Vincent asked, not looking up from his translation work.

"None...Professor Spengler was simply radioing in that he's at the half way point of the trip and should be here in abour eight hours." Iain explained.

"Excellent." Vincent approved. Iain looked at his watch and stretched his stiff arms...and received a sickening popping sound eminate from his left shoulder which made him wince.

"Well...I don't know about you, Vincent...but I'm gonna try get some sleep...my concentration's wavering and I don't feel I can do much good if I'm getting distracted." Iain commented as he watched Vincent continue translating passages from the book.

"Agreed...I suggest some of us try to get to sleep...I can operate better under a lack of sleep than some people due to some of the training I've received." Vincent responded.

"Show off." Iain replied with a grin. "What should I tell Jill if I see her?" Iain asked.

"Tell her that I'm translating the book...I'm sure she'll understand." Vincent replied.

"I hope you're right...I wouldn't want to get onto her badside." Iain replied as he left the room.

"Neither would I." Vincent replied to the empty room. As Vincent jotted down the possible translation of a few specific words he paused, as if lost in thought. Then suddenly he collapsed forward as if knocked unconcious.
(Time Unknown...place...unknown)
"What? Where am I?" Vincent asked as he looked around. All around him purple storm clouds raged above a battle-scarred landscape...which seemed oddly alien...yet there were some disturbingly familiar elements. Around him he couldn't see another living soul...but somewhere above he could hear the beating of collosal wings...which seemed to eminate from behind a collosal blood red moon. "Show yourself!" Vincent demanded...and suddenly he was consumed by black.
May 31st, 2004
8 Days until the end of the world.
England (6:34am)
"Vincent? Vincent!" Suddenly Vincent awoke and suddenly shut his eyes at the harsh light which poured in through one of the lab windows...it was morning? "Vincent...you okay? The way you were sleeping couldn't have been all that comfortable." It was Tommy who at present was dressed in civilian clothes.

"Pardon?" Vincent asked.

"It's morning...and I can't say it's a huge surprise to find you sleeping in the lab...especially with your dedication to translating that thing." Tommy indicated the book.

"Sleeping? But I was only out for a second..." Vincent studied his watch...it read 6:35 AM. The time, combined with the change in lighting proved that it was morning. "I had a vision...I was at an alien landscape...I could hear what sounded like the wings of a collosal bird or moth...but I could've sworn I'd been in that vision for a few minutes...but apparantly I was either in it for the best part of six hours or I was truly there for a few minutes but the end of the dream caused me to fall into a type of deep sleep." Vincent supposed.

"Okay...did you see anything important? Anything that might relate to this case?" Tommy asked.

"Nothing specific...if any I'm afraid." Vincent replied.

"Damn...oh well we still have a lot of work to do...Professor Spengler should be arriving in two hours or so and we must get the rest of the unfinished tasks completed." Tommy added.

"Agreed...are the rest of the team downstairs?" Vincent asked.

"A lot of them are migrating down at present." Tommy replied as he walked out of the room.
Extreme Ghostbusters

May 30, 2004 (7:54am EST, America)
9 days until the end of the world.
"You're going to England? Egon, what the Hell for? You develop a taste for crumpets and perpetual drizzle?" the voice of Peter Venkman came from the speaker phone.

"Peter, that is a horrendous stereotype." Egon responded, zipping up his familiar blue flight suit.

"Tell that to Robert--he's from Morecambe...he'll back me up on this."

The other two legendary original members of the Ghostbusters were in the room, as was Janine. Ray Stantz was dressed in a brown jacket with the Ghostbusters logo on its chest. Winston was wearing a grey plaid shirt that reminded Ray of what he was wearing the very first time they'd met, almost twenty-one years before.

Being only 43, Ray's face was still ruddy and youthful--if not for the beard he'd grown over the last couple years, he was almost indistinguishable from the days he fought Gozer, Samhaine, and the Boogeyman on a weekly basis.

Winston, while the oldest Ghostbuster (having just had his 51st birthday earlier in the month), also still looked quite vital. He'd regrown the mustache he'd shaved off not long after the team founded, and his dark hair sported a couple of distinguishing white streaks.

"I'm not sure you should be going alone...what if it is dangerous?" Ray asked.

"You just want to get a look at it, don't you?" Winston quipped, poking Ray on the arm.

"Well...um...yeah..." Ray replied sheepishly. "I'm an occultist, you know..."

"True. But not fluent in Sumerian." Egon replied. "Ray, if it's something dangerous, remember there are two teams of Ghostbusters in England more than capable of dealing with it."

"I know..." Ray responded. "And I don't have a ready babysitter for Eric with his Mom visiting Nova Scotia..." He chuckled at the thought. "Her and her little projects..."

"I thought that was why you liked her, Man...' Winston teased.

"I thought it was because of her nice set of..."

Janine cleared her throat loudly in warning.

"Egon's right, Ray." Winston said. "Tommy Simpson's got a good crew, and we know Vince is a force to be reckoned with. I think anything that comes after Egon is gonna think twice if it realizes it has to get through Vincent Belmont to do it..."

"True...and I guess it's not the best omen for all of us to go." Ray said resignedly. "Last time we were there the Prime Minister got kidnapped, and the time before that the place was undergoing a potential disaster of biblical proportion..."

"More like astrological proportion..." Venkman chimed in. "Hey, my publicity tour will be done in about a week...if you really need me I suppose I could come home, just..."

"You still haven't figured out what happened to that guy of yours yet?" Winston asked.

"Nope" Venkman replied. "I know after what happened to John Lipsyte, and Ron leaving he had every right to be upset. But trust me--it just doesn't seem like Jeremy to just up and vanish like that."

"I think it's settled, then." Winston summarized. "Egon goes to England, we continue as normal."

"Normal being a fairly relative term around here..."

Janine, Ray, and Winston followed Egon to the ECTO-4, the custom gyrowing aircraft Egon had built back in 1989. It was equipped with a version of what was probably Egon's masterpiece invention, the transdimensional warp drive, though being expensive to operate, had only been used a handful of times. It wouldn't be needed for this trip.

"You can't fool me, Professor." Janine teased. "Forget all about translating an old book, you're doing this to take a nice, long trip in your hot rod..."

"You know me too well..." Egon retorted, smirking.

"You take care, Homeboy..." Winston said, shaking his hand.

"I shall." Egon replied warmly.

"If you can get hold of any Doctor Who stuff..." Ray joked, hugging his old friend.

"Your favorite is Tom Baker, but you like Sylvester McCoy too..." Egon replied.

Ray and Winston wisely left to give husband and wife one moment more alone together. After a few tender words and a long kiss, the tall man boarded the aircraft. With a roar, it came to life, and carried him into the skies, bearing east...

(8:07am)

Mary Sue Gladstone looked up at the sound...seeing a bright object flying out to sea. She moped along the street of TriBeCa...berating herself for not having the courage to go up there...

There. The former firehouse at 110 North Moore Street, the one with the sign bearing the legendary logo, the cartoony white ghost surrounded by a red circle, with a slash across the creature...

Oh Egon... she thought wistfully.

She'd been so close a year ago...her heart soared when the ad appeared in the LA Times...
Ghostbusters International to Open West Coast Division

"235?" The slutty strawberry blonde woman called. Her skirt is just way too short Mary Sue had thought. She has to be easy...I mean, Geez, "Chelsea Aberdeen"? That sounds like a porn star name or something...

Then she realized..."Me!!! That's me!!!" she shouted, jumping up and down, running to the front of the room

"This way..." the bitch said, leading her to a table where Dr. Peter Venkman (Egon's best friend in the whole world!!!) and some other guy were sitting, both wearing sport coats and ties. The other guy had a paper nametag reading "GBI FRACHISE CEO", while Venkman's was plastic, engraved, and had his name and the title "GBI CEO"

Venkman stood up and introduced himself and the other guy--Dr. Joey Williams, the new franchise's CEO--to her. "Our business operations manager, Miss Aberdeen, tells me you scored quite well on the test. Miss..." he looked down at the paper in front of him.

"Mary Sue Gladstone!" she anwered brightly, before Venkman could read it.

"Miss Gladstone" Joey nodded, clearly impressed...

Mary Sue looked at both of them, then around some...she saw a third man, with a "GBI STAFF" tag, playing Beenimon on his Game Boy Advance but that didn't satisfy her. "Egon isn't here?" she just had to ask.

One of Joey's eyebrows shot up. "Egon?"

"The whole reason I want to be a Ghostbuster is so I can meet Egon! He is like the perfect man, and I want to give him all the love he needs!!!'

Venkman looked sad as he reminded her. "You...do realize that Professor Spengler has been married for the last five years?"

Oh yeah...remind me of that... she seethed inside. I don't see how anyone can think they're compatible...that guy who wrote the movies said so! He thought they were "failed" and "mawkish"--why didn't she just stay with that...oh, that one guy, the accountant or something?

She knew Peter would understand, after all..."Oh, c'mon, Peter, you worked with that bitch, you know how she is--she just wants one thing out of him and that's it." She just wants his rod up her hole!!! "She's just no good for him!!! It's a mismatch made in Hell!!! I have a black belt in karate--I can take her!! Hi-Yah!!!" With that, she threw a roundhouse kick at harmless empty air...

...Or it would've been if some dorky looking guy hadn't walked up just then.

Game Boy Man jumped up and ran over to the now out-cold Dork.

Venkman smiled a warm smile of comprehension and approval as he shook Mary Sue's hand. "I think we've seen all we need to, haven't we Dr. Williams?"

Joey smiled too. "I think we have Sir!"

"We'll send the application to the home office for processing, and contact you shortly! Thanks for your interest!!!" Venkman continued.

"When should I call..."

"We'll call you, Miss Gladstone!!!' Joey said happily.

"I'm gonna be a Ghostbuster!!!" she chanted happily as she walked away. "I'm gonna get to meet Eeeegon!!!"


Only they never did call her back.

She tried to call, but the Whore who answered the phone kept putting her on hold. She went to the office once, but some Jerk who was some kind of Egon rip-off gave her the runaround and lied to her about "Dr. Venkman isn't here" and a bunch of crap.

That redheaded bitch must have found out I was going to be a Ghostbuster... Mary Sue thought angrily. And she sabotaged me. She mind controls Egon, and probably f***s Peter too...she made them turn me away. Because she's afraid.

She hid as she heard the roar of an engine...the ECTO-1 returning to the firehouse. She could vaguely see the outlines of those kid imposters sitting in the car...that Goth Hooker and the Latino guy who thought he was hot stuff. And a guy in a wheelchair? What kind of moron thinks a guy in a wheelchair could be a Ghostbuster?

She ran back to her hotel room, and cried. She'd sold all of her earthly posessions except her snazzy pink Ghostbuster flight suit to get here, and she couldn't take the last step.

There was a knock at the door.

She sniffled, and got up. Too early for the maid...

She opened the door. The person standing their was wearing a dark hood over their face, like Darth Sidius, so she couldn't see their face. "May I help you?"

"I am here to help you." a cold female voice replied.

To Be Continued

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