This story takes place not long after Extreme Ghostbusters: Hearts In Eclipse, Part Three
The "Extreme Ghostbusters" have been together for a year, with Egon Spengler and Janine Melnitz serving as mentors. Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz, and Winston Zeddemore are all husbands and fathers, but have returned to the company they helped form; while Egon and Janine are, after almost fifteen years, engaged to be married.
Ghostbusters Omnibus Timeline Year Sixteen
A piece of trash fluttered by, breaking the quiet of a March night pregnant with the promise of spring. It clattered to a stop against a dumpster, appropriately enough.
A garbage truck pulled up to the dumpster. Two disheveled men got out; one of them snorted as he picked up the blown detritus. "You'd think they'd take the one step more necessary to get it, I dunno, the giant thing designed to hold trash just six inches away, right?"
"Yeah, well, that's kids today, Larry. Always in a hurry." The other garbageman said. "Ready to grab it, then?"
"Yeah, Joe." Larry replied. "And I still think you're nuts about the Jaguars."
"Hey, it's their year!" Joe replied. "Katie has a feelin' about this one..."
"Your wife is as nuts as you are." Larry said. "Every year is the Jaguars year...except it never is. I tell you..."
The wind began to swirl, and a distinct smell began to fill the air.
"We about to have a thunderstorm?" Joe asked.
"Weather didn't say anything about it..." Larry replied.
"Yeah, and the weatherman is never wrong."
"You mean like Katie and her 'hunches'?"
"Don't make me back the truck over you..."
There was snap of purple lightning, and something fell to the ground.
"What the hell?" Larry said.
"Jumpin' jehosephat!!!" Joe exclaimed. "It's a couple of kids or something! You guys all right?" he called, he and his coworker moving closer to help.
One of the kids sat bold upright. She looked to be a pre-teen girl at first glance, with unkempt dirty blonde hair, and a baggy grey and rust-colored outfit. She appeared to have forgotten her shoes.
Her eyes popped open.
Joe and Larry literally jumped back.
The girl's brown eyes had eerie solid black sclera, with dull bluish irises and white pupils. And there was a glowing purple gem, darker on one side, affixed to her forehead. "I feel it..." the girl said, in a voice with an unnatural modulation to it. "There is another heart here...and I sense..." her eyes narrowed. "The chieftain? How can that be?"
She howled, and a blast of purple energy sent Joe and Larry flying back. When they picked themselves up, there was no sign of the weird girl.
"What the sweet merciful fuck just happened, Joe?"
"I don't know, Larry..." Joe replied. "But find the nearest pay phone...you know who we need to call..."
There was a groan from back where the girl appeared. There was another child there; as shoeless as the other, but in green and yellow. And apparently male.
Joe and Larry ran.
The bleary-eyed boy looked around. "A nice 'ello to yous too...." He shook his head. "Where the dickens 'ave we ended up?"
CODA AND TERCHI'S EXTREME ADVENTURE
By Fritz Baugh
GBI Case File 1998-16/440
Corner of Varick and Moore
I am never getting married
nineteen year-old Kylie Griffin remarked to herself.
The table around her was filled with bridal magazines, filled with pictures of wedding dresses full of frills and lace. At the center of the storm sat one of Kylie's bosses, thirty-nine year-old Janine Melnitz--the bride-to-be.
"What about this one, Jay?" a slightly older woman asked, in a voice betraying her Brooklyn upbringing.
Janine's nose crinkled. "I'd look like a frickin' mermaid in that one, Dee."
Doris Melnitz Irwin, Janine's older sister, laughed. "Well, you are a redhead!"
"It's not too late for you and Egon to just go down to the courthouse..." the fourth woman in the room, Kaila McMillan Zeddemore, remarked.
"We'd kill them both." Doris snarled.
Kylie spared a quick glace at Kaila's five year-old daughter Charlene, who was asleep in one of the nearby chairs--the young girl had been completely bored with the whole thing. I completely agree, Kiddo... (Kylie half suspected Charlene was faking the sleep). She really felt envy for Egon, who was holed up in his lab--and since the dress selection was supposed to be a "surprise" to him anyway, the other women left him to it.
"Hey, Kylie, what do you think?" Janine asked.
Kylie broke out in a cold sweat. She felt honest relief when the phone next to Janine began to ring.
"Typical timing." Janine rolled her eyes. "Ghostbusters Central, how may we help you?" She nodded her head a few times, punctuated with a couple of "uh-huh"s, and scribbled something down on a nearby notebook. "We'll send the team out right away!" After hanging up, she handed the note to Kylie.
"What's the situation?" Kylie asked.
"Couple of garbagemen in Queens said a couple of midgets popped out of a purple fireworks show." Janine answered. "It could be a prank, a'course..."
"We'll take it!!!" Kylie said, maybe just a little too enthusiastically.
"Well, crap." Doris said breezily. "I guess we'll have to pick out your bridesmaid dress when we get back, Kylie."
Kylie muttered, and quickly went downstairs.
Ray Stantz and Winston Zeddemore watched people stroll though the terminal. Ray looked at his watch for like the fifth time.
"The board says they'll be here on time" Winston said.
"I know, I know...I just..."
"I understand, Man." Winston said, placing a hand on Ray's shoulder.
"There!" Ray said excitedly.
Winston of course recognized the woman holding the dozing twenty-month old toddler: Elizabeth Hawthorne Stantz, Ray's wife of almost three years. Though he did notice one difference from the last time he saw her. "What's with the hair?" Winston asked, pointing to his left temple--a shock of Liz's hair over her own left temple was now a coppery auburn color...
"Kind of a weird story..." Ray answered. "Liz!"
Liz, who was still talking with a porter rolling her luggage along, smiled, and poked the dozing toddler. "Look who's here!"
The drowsy little boy looked up, kind of annoyed at the interruption of his nap...until his eyes went wide and he squealed with joy. "DA-DA!!!" The little boy had the exact same wide, dimpled smile as Ray Stantz.
"C'mere, you!" Ray said, taking the eager child from Liz, hugging him tightly. Ray and Liz then snuck in a quick kiss.
"This must be Eric Stantz." Winston said, taking the boy's hand and shaking it.
"This is my friend Winston!" Ray said.
"How was the trip?' Winston asked.
"Not bad at all." Liz answered. "Pretty easy after the last few months of making arrangements and packing. This is actually the last part of a long, dull process." She shrugged. "But we needed to get it done by summer, because by then all the tribunals will be in session and I'll be busy with that."
"Welcome to New York at last." Ray said happily. "Both of you!"
Liz sidled up to Ray's other side. "You did take good care of Mommy while I was away, right?" Ray asked Eric. The boy smiled and nodded.
"Winston?" Liz asked.
"Nothing...just..." Winston shook his head. "I just had a weird feeling. Maybe I had too much gravy on my breakfast."
Or someone just walked over my grave...
This world has gone mad. That is the only way to explain it.
We chose our domain for a reason--this area is frozen compared to the land we ruled. No wonder it's full of the ridiculous ice people--this is more to their liking.
I see some of the preferred race...but so much here...offends me.
The smells, for one thing. Noxious; even the stinking offal of animals left to rot for months is nothing compared to some of this.
The noises...chaotic, clashing...disharmonic...Driano would hate this place. Which I suppose is some small benefit.
And all of this metal...so...hideous. Cold in a different way--a deep freeze of the spirit.
I know the Chieftain is here...he should have been long gone from the world, but he would not be the only human to escape death's grasp
Where is he?
No...first find the heart that calls to me. With it's power, then...then I can confront the Chieftain. Then, perhaps, I can discover the fate of my absent brother.
As the ECTO-1 pulled up to the intersection, they saw a police car and a garbage truck. Two disheveled garbage men and a couple of beat cops stood nearby.
"Well, Carlos ain't on this one..." Eduardo Rivera exhaled. "So we got that goin' for us."
Eduardo, Kylie, and the other two Ghostbusters--Roland Jackson and Garrett Miller--got out of the car. "How may we help you. Officers?" Roland said amiably.
"Now where did that kid go?" one of the cops asked, suddenly.
"He screamed and ran behind that mail box when the Ghostbuster car pulled up." the other answered.
"Let me help you." Roland said, as one of the officers rolled his eyes and moved toward the indicated box.
Kylie examined her PKE Meter. "Hmm..."
"Got anything?" Garrett asked.
"There's still a lot of energy floating around, but it's dissipating..." Kylie answered.
"Hey there, you can come out!" the cop said.
Roland looked down to see what appeared, at first glance, to be a "child" as the report had stated. But his pointed ears and slight beard stubble were incongruous to that first impression. "Fine 'ows y'do 'ere! Some kinda blarin' clankin' makin' the wors' noise like a ruttin' owlbear eatin' a rabid displacer beast or somefink I swears..."
"Hello there!" Roland said amiably.
"Whut are you?" the boy asked, eyes wide. "I mean, you looks like a manfolk...but I ain't neva' seen one in 'Obgoblin color before..."
Roland inhaled deeply. He was trying not to take offense at that, but was failing.
"I gotta tell Styx 'bout this!" the boy continued excitedly. "There's 'Alf-Goblins after all!"
"Well, he's rude." Garrett said. "I think I like him already."
"An' a Sluagh? They has Sluagh here?" the boy said, eyeing Kylie.
"Sluagh are spirits of the restless dead from Irish folklore." Kylie said acidly. "I ain't dead."
"Don't take it personally, okay?" Eduardo said.
"An' a satyr?!" the boy said. "We lands in Arcadia or somefink?!"
"Satyr?!" Eduardo bristled, well tired of being called "Goat Boy" by Garrett.
"Don't take it personally, okay?" Kylie smirked.
"Hey, I have an idea, how about before you insult everyone here, you stop and tell us who you are, alright?" Garrett broke in.
"Oh, well, no insult was meant, I promise..." the boy said, straightening his vest and bowing. "Terchi Bagwise of Dragonsfall, at yer service."
"He throwing off any paranormal energy?" Roland asked Kylie.
Kylie shook her head. "He's definitely corporeal. There's a slight trace--a stronger PK field than an average human, but nothing really exceptional. He may have supernatural ancestry, but that's maybe about it."
"Garrett of Brooklyn Heights." Garrett answered. "And this is Roland of Jackson, Vampira of the Goth, and Torgo of the Goat People."
Eduardo growled, and started to move toward Garrett.
"Pleased to meecha all." Terchi said.
"We're not..." Kylie started to say.
"Now, could you tell us why you're here?" Garrett asked.
Terchi shrugged. "Yer guess is as good as mine, Mister Garrett."
"What?" Garrett asked.
"Well, you sees, I..." Terchi's eyes went wide, and he grabbed Garrett's shoulder patch, the one displaying the red and white Ghostbuster logo. "You 'as one of these too?"
"You...know what that is?" Roland asked, indicating his own Ghostbuster patch.
"Well, I's seen one before." Terchi shrugged. "Miz Elizabef's mantoy Mister Ray 'ad one 'is shirt when they saved us from the skeleton horde and..." Terchi visibly shuddered. "...'At 'orrible Mister Stalker. Scary arse that guy was..."
" 'Miss Elizabeth and Mister Ray'..." Kylie interjected. "Liz and Ray Stantz, do you mean?!"
"Oh yeah!!!" Terchi exclaimed. "Mister Ray Stanz and Miz Elizebef 'Awforne Stanz!!! You knows them too?"
I can't locate the heart in this city...something is obscuring it from me...
This building here, there is lingering energy....but the heart is not here...
I must feel the power...
A lighter resonance...
The one who last used the heart...
I know where he is!!!
Egon Spengler heard the front door open; he looked up from the papers on the desk that had once belonged to Peter Venkman, in case there were customers to deal with.
"Hey! We're back!" Ray called out.
Egon stood up, and walked over to them. He was still using a cane, as he had since a recent incident at the opera house. He was getting better, though, and was certain he'd be able to walk to the altar without it.
The first person Egon saw, though, was a twenty month old boy staring at the garage with a wide expression of wonder.
"Hello there." Egon said.
The boy looked at him, then at Ray. "Da-da?"
"It's all right, Eric!" Ray told his son. "This is my old friend Egon!"
Egon found himself making a heartfelt grin. "And you must be Eric Stantz." Egon extended a hand to shake.
Eric grabbed him and hugged him. "Unk Egon!"
" 'Uncle Egon'?" Egon noted. "That term is usually only applied to the brother of one's parent." He made a dry chuckle. "So actually, I suppose it fits."
"We meet again at last, Doctor." Liz said.
"That we do, Elizabeth." he shook her hand. "But as you're effectively family now, you really should call me Egon."
"The ladies still upstairs looking at wedding dresses?" Winston asked.
"I believe so." Egon answered. "Though Charlene was asleep when I passed through."
Winston nodded. "I bet. This 'girl' stuff bores her to death."
"She might get over it someday." Liz shrugged.
Eric was wandering around the garage, his father following just close enough to intervene if he toddled over to something he shouldn't. Eric wandered over to the fire pole, and looked up it. "Dis work?" he said, and tried to climb up it.
Ray laughed. "You are my son!!!" He picked Eric up, put him into place about three feet off the floor, and let him slide down it. Eric laughed merrily and said "Again!!!"
"Raymond was the same way when he saw it." Egon remarked.
Eric suddenly squealed and ran behind Ray.
Ray looked up to see a familiar green face at the top of the fire pole. "Slimer? Hey, come on down, Buddy! You have to meet my family!"
Slimer floated down. He babbled a greeting.
"So this is Slimer." Liz said amiably. "I've heard so much about you."
"Slimer, this is my wife, Liz." Ray said.
Slimer cried out joyfully, and flew to embrace her...
...Except when he got about a foot away from her, the confused ghost bounced back.
Eric laughed and moved from behind his father.
"Heh. Parma's still up." She closed her eyes and silently mouthed something. "Try again."
This time Slimer successfully bear hugged her. "I let this happen why?" she said breezily.
"Liz, Peter's gonna offer you just about anything he can to learn that trick." Winston noted.
"Even if he was capable of learning it..." Liz replied, "...Teaching it to him would get both of us hunted down and killed."
Eric moved closer to the ghost--seeing it hug his mother seemed to take a lot of the fright out of it. "Sli-ma?"
"Hah?" Slimer replied.
Eric grabbed him, then quickly stepped back. The boy looked at his own now slime-covered hands. He squealed in delight and hugged Slimer again.
"I think he's found a new playmate." Liz said warmly. Ray smiled and gave her a quick kiss on the cheek.
"Yeah, but he's gonna be a real messy one..."
A Krazy's Restaurant Elsewhere In Manhattan
"...And not long after that, I shit you not, I found James in the kitchen with a hot apple pie, doing...well..." The face of Sherman Tully, MD (Dermatology) , curdled for a few seconds, then he began to laugh. "I tell you, Louis, you should be really glad you never had any kids."
Sherman's cousin, Louis B. Tully, Certified Public Accountant, had nearly choked on his cheeseburger with Sherm's story. After getting his breath back from laughing so hard, he finally replied. "Well, that's what Andrew tells me too, and I know Lawrence is a handful especially now that he's a teenager, but my Mom would totally disagree with you..."
"Well, all Aunt Flo sees is another grandkid to spoil." Sherm said. "Oh yeah...sorry...I forgot how sensitive this subject might be right now, with you working with the ex again."
"I'm not working with her." Louis shrugged. "We're just both employed by the same company--she's still at the Franchise Zero office in Tribeca, but Doctor Venkman's leased some office space at the Slaviczek Building at Thirtieth Street and Seventh Avenue to be Ghostbusters International headquarters. He took the corner office himself of course even though he's never there, but the one he gave me is great! It's right next to the cappuccino machine!"
"Well, then you did great, then!" Sherm grinned.
"You're pretty good with numbers and organization yourself, Sherm." Louis said. "You ever get tired of looking at people's moles and eczema all day I know I could talk Dr. Venkman into hiring you."
Sherm laughed. "Yeah, but until James is out of college I don't think I could take the pay cut."
Louis shrugged, and took another bite of his clown burger.
He heard some sort of commotion near the door. "I'm sorry, Miss, but the sign clearly says 'No shirt, no shoes, no...' ERGH!!!" The list bit was accompanied by a loud thud and a scream.
Louis looked up to see one of the employees was now laying on top of the condiment bar. A girl stood in the doorway, and sure enough, was shoeless. Louis felt the hair on the back of his neck stand up.
"Do not impede me, iceling!" the girl barked, a weird tenor and accent in her voice.
"Wow." Sherm said. "Those have got to be the third or fourth hairiest set of feet I've ever seen!"
Louis gulped as the girl turned to face them. He froze in mid-breath: there was a gem on her forehead. One he recognized. "...oh...shit..." he squeaked.
"You." the girl said, moving closer to Louis.
"Get out of here, Sherm!!!' Louis managed to breathe.
The air around the girl suddenly coursed with purple energy. The staff and customers screamed and started to run.
Louis couldn't move.
"L...Louis!!!" Sherm called, pausing in his own flight.
The girl grabbed Louis; the purple energy played around him.
"Your memories...of the heart..."
Images flooded through his head...
"Might I interest you in a good luck charm? If there's two women involved, you might need it." The bum pulled out a purplish gem, almost opague, and even darker on one side. In fact, when he held it up, it resembled a purple moon being eclipsed. "Only five bucks..."
His head was pounding...like it wanted to explode...
He saw his answering machine light was blinking...he jabbed the button...
"Uncle Louis, it's Lawrence...could you loan me twenty bucks till Friday? I'm a little short this week and..."
He hit the skip button brusquely. Leeching parasite asshole nephew of mine...had more toys than God as a kid, and he's still a spoiled little shithead...
"Hey, it's Sherm. You know, your cousin? Anyway, I was thinking maybe I come over this weekend and go bowling..."
"Bowling?!" Louis howled, ripping the answering machine off the coffee table and hurling it into the wall. "My life is a fucking joke and he wants to go bowling?!"
Louis collapsed onto the couch, head swimming with agony...How could I have been so stupid? They didn't want me back...they all wanted to laugh at me one more time...rub it all in that they have the kind of lives I can only dream about...I just wanted to find someone...and kept losing them to Ghostbusters. I just wanted somebody to love me--was that so wrong?!
I hate them!!! I hate them all!!!
And then, he found himself drowning in a sea of rage. It was purple.
"I want him and Venkman both--tell that smug bastard I'll be waiting for him where it all began, and if he doesn't get there quick...well, I won't promise anything..."
"I'm tired of listening to you and your lies!!!" Louis shouted. "Like the lie about how you loved me! Like the lie about for better or for worse!"
"No...not during the possession...afterward..." the girl snarled.
"I don't see why not." Venkman replied. "Er, Ray...could you take care of.." he pointed at the purple gem on the floor.
"Huh? Yeah, right..." Ray nodded, pulling out a sample jar to scoop up the gloom gem. "I guess these will have to go into the same fridge we keep the mood slime in..."
"I just wonder where these things came from." Winston remarked. "We never did find the bum who sold them..."
She dropped Louis. The image in his mind, clear as day. His garb was far different, but the bearing, the facial features...
"Shima-Buku IS here!!!" the girl cried.
"shim...who..." Louis tried to ask, before falling unconscious.
Based on Ghostbusters Created by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis
Extreme Ghostbusters Created by Fil Barlow