When awareness returned, I saw a vaguely familiar bunkroom. There were three men sleeping in the other beds, one of whom I could tell was Micky, the other two I didnít recognize because they were facing away from me. Looking around I saw my bed was closest to the door. I tiptoed out to ascertain my surroundings.
What ARE you doing?
Trying to figure out where we are silly! I told him.
Huh?** There was a pause. Aw hell this ainít the Pad!!!
Good thinking sherlock. Weíre leapers now, remember? Oh man . . .
I looked out the window to see a familiar New York City landscape. I turned on some lights and looked around the room, which was becoming more and more familiar by the minute. Pulling out the handlink, I poked at it randomly until the display lit up, confirming my suspicions.
What is it Len? Micky tiptoed out and found me staring at the handlink. I handed it to him.
"Um, it was a pair of movies and cartoon series I used to watch as a kid. They caught ghosts in the New York City area. This . . . this is the firehouse! Youíre Venkman and Iím Stantz!!"
"Pete Venkman, Ray Stantz. Two of the Ghostbusters. Just follow my lead and youíll be fine."
"Okay." He handed the handlink back to me. Just then the alarm sounded. Over the noise, he shouted, "Whatís that?"
"The alarm! We got a call! Come on!" I ran to the firepole and slid down. He reluctantly followed me. Spengs and Winston joined us a moment later and within five minutes we were on our way to Radio City Music Hall. On the way I pulled up memories of the Ghostbusters movies to show Micky how to use the proton pack.
When we arrived at the famous building, we grabbed our proton packs and headed inside. A young man greeted us at the door and led us inside to the stage.
"Weíve sighted the ghost five times now, always on the stage or in the audience area. I hope you can catch it -- we open tomorrow night!" he said.
"Donít worry sir, we handle this kind of thing all the time!" I said, unslinging the proton thrower and getting ready to fulfill a childhood dream.
"Thank you . . . um, I think Iíll go to the rehearsal rooms." The man scurried off.
I slid on the goggles that Ray always wore while Egon pulled out his PKE meter. Micky pulled his proton thrower and started looking around the stage. Winston, too, readied his thrower and headed out into the audience area.
"Iíve got a reading in the balcony up there," Egon said.
"Funny, Iím getting one in the catwalk," I said. "Wanna split up? You and Winston tackle the balcony and Pete and I will take the catwalk?"
"Good idea." Egon moved off and I walked over to Micky.
"Aaaah!" He jumped a foot in the air. "Bug eyes!!!"
"Oh shut up. These are . . . sheesh I forgot what theyíre called but theyíre for seeing ghosts. Not bug-eyes." I started looking around. "There!!!" I gasped.
"There!" I pointed to the catwalk. "We gotta go up there and bag it."
"I donít know how!" he whined.
"Címere." I yanked the trap off his belt where it was hanging. "This is a trap. This is the control for opening and closing it," I held up the foot pedal. "You step on it once to open, once to close. When I tell you to set the trap, get it right beneath where the ghost is -- even if you need to float it on a field. When I say to open, open it and then close it when I say so. Got it?"
"I think so."
"Good." I shot up on my fields and pulled the proton wand, turning it on and getting ready. I turned invisible, to try and fool the ghost. It spotted me, though, and skirted around the tops of the curtains at the edge of the stage.
"Itís behind the curtain!!! Right there!" Micky cried, pointing.
"See it!" I zoomed around, spotting the ghost. I fired, catching the fleeing ghost in my beam. "Set the trap!!!"
"Setting it!" I saw a trap float beneath the ghost out of the corner of my eye.
I lowered the ghost with the beam. "Now open the trap but *donít* look directly in it!" He opened it and I slowly lowered the ghost to the point where the trap took over. "Close it!"
Once the trap closed, I lifted the goggles. "Letís get down before the others find us up here," Micky said. We landed just before Winston and Egon ran up.
"Got the ghost!" I held up the trap.
"Good job Ray," Egon said.
We got back to the Pad four hours later, after finding the young man and negotiating the payment, then handling five other calls Janine radioed in to us. When we got back Winston, Micky, and I shot for the shower -- I won. In the process of using the washroom and showering, I decided I didnít like being trapped in a manís body and that Agnes and I would never laugh at Al again when he complained about leaping into women.
Yeah right Len. Wake up babe -- you ainít writiní Aggie no more. Sheís real and youíre living at the Pad forever, at least once you get back from leaping. No more adventures of Aggie and Al for you babe, I chastised myself.
What ARE you talking about babe? Micky called across the link. What do you mean about writing Aggie and Al?
They were a fictional pair of leapers my cy-- er, a friend and I created, I told him, and then gave him a quick synopsis of the series of fanfics as I dried off and dressed in jeans and t-shirt. Heading out, I nodded to Winston, who had the shower next. He ran in and I sat down in the living room area.
"What are we here to do? Why did we land here?" Micky asked, standing near me.
"Let me look at the handlink." I pulled it out of my jeans pocket and read the display. "Huh. According to this we should be leaping out now. In the original history, Ray and Peter went to catch that ghost on the catwalk and were killed when they fell off. We caught that ghost and saved their lives . . . but why are we still here?"
"Your turn in the shower!" Winston called. Micky ran into the shower faster than Iíd ever seen him run.
When he came out fifteen minutes later, slime-free and in dry clothes, I started to feel a tingling sensation. "Guess we had to wait to leap until you got to shower," I said just before we leaped.
Last updated 22 JAN 99
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