Previously, on Ghostbusters. Currently, Dr. Hunt was called out to the Arizona franchise to deal with something coyote related; details unavailable. Claire continued leading the Ghostbusters, with Max as the intern who lasted longer than six weeks and so earned the use of his name instead of a number.
They were joined by Harriet Morris, whose parents REALLY wanted her to be a Ghostbuster (though she didn’t find it terribly compelling.) They used their family connections, including Councilman Darren Hicks, who was instrumental in the mayor’s budget approval process. Congratulations, Harriet was hired on to the Ghostbusters!
She was sorting and bar coding ghosts in the containment grid while Max polished up the equipment and Claire worked the phone for collections.
It’s a Zoo Out There
Claire tried collecting an outstanding debt from Manny, a political wheeler-dealer who ran interference for a number of important people. He said he couldn’t possibly find the liquidated funds to pay the bill until next month–unless the Ghostbusters provided entertainment for a charity fundraiser the city was throwing at the zoo. Claire reluctantly agreed, only to find that it involved lots of children, and some of them were celebrating birthdays. Great.
They were to coordinate with the band, the Midnight Riders, so when the swing band played their theme they would “do their thing.” During setup, a kid ran up and kicked Max in the shins and yelled that ghosts aren’t real; Claire didn’t miss a beat yelling that Santa wasn’t either, tearing the child’s innocence beyond repair. Only Max was sad about that.
Eventually the band played the Ghostbusters theme, and Harriet danced the robot (“She’s new!” Max yelled) and they otherwise pressed on past the awful and awkward moment. As they were trying to figure out if they could leave now or had to stick around for autographs, a portly bureaucrat approached them.
Gene Weller worked for the transit authority. There were incidents at peak smog points in the Kilmer Chunnel where there was supernatural activity, the most recent one almost suffocating a number of people. He hired them on retainer for Memorial Day weekend, plus expenses, to protect the people of Gotham from the threat. They agreed.
Harriet led the effort to get the gear together, assisted by Max, as Claire worked on the paperwork. They got dirt bikes, painted them up, fitted them with sirens and flashing lights (and Harriet retrofitted proper siren and light equipment on the bagel delivery truck too.) She put a rack in the back of the delivery truck for the bikes. She also got scuba-grade air tanks for the Ghostbusters.
The next day, they took piles of bagels to the dispirited traffic cops managing the exodus of Gothamites from the city for the three day weekend. Ever cheerful, Max got local lox and honey to go with the bagels, brightening their day. Some of the cops had heard of something going on in the tunnels that was Ghostbuster business, and were secretly relieved to see the experts on site.
They got in position, with Harriet at the north end of the tunnel, Max in the middle, and Claire at the south end. Traffic slowed to 20 mph. Exhaust built up.
The Threat Manifests
Harriet and Claire got readings that psychokinetic energy was rising in the tunnel, but Max was not getting readings he could trust–until he saw the massive ghost face made of smog right on top of him.
Harriet and Claire raced towards him on their dirt bikes, weaving through slowed traffic. He made a run for it, passing Claire, then trying to turn and get a shot off at the ghost. The bike dumped him, and he had to check the pack to make sure it wouldn’t explode before he got back in the fight.
Claire swooped to a halt and dismounted, drawing the ghost’s attention as Harriet skidded to a stop and opened up. With both Ghostbusters firing on the ghost, it writhed back, but then the streams crossed and both lost cohesion, spraying whip-like energy strands all around, like fiber-optic cables, scoring metal and shattering glass. The massive ghost escaped into a truck’s engine block. (“She’s new!” Max yelled.)
The truck peeled apart and the ghost ascended, terrifying, its chest a huge engine block. It made a liquid metal spear, and caught Claire’s stream, hurling it at Harriet, who barely dodged. Max and Harriet fired on it as it flipped a car at Claire. Max tried to use lore on golems or poltergiests to figure out how this thing was using the engine block, concluding it was connected to the source of the pollution and could use the metal as magical armor.
As Harriet’s pack redlined on empty, they combined efforts. Harriet’s stream pulled it mostly out of the engine block, Max managed the trap, and Claire pinned it in place long enough to be captured.
The Ghostbusters put down some road flares, then left the chaotic wreckage, nodding to the cops on the way home. They put the ghost in the containment grid, job well done.
Claire talked to Gene, who tried to weasel his way out of covering expenses in addition to the fee, citing the extensive damage to the tunnel. Claire pointed out that could damage the Ghostbuster incentive to be helpful in the future, and Gene folded, paying the agreed-upon fees.
That took about 2 hours, but we were having internet problems, so rather than doing another job we called it good for the night.