gone_byebye: (ooc)
Until we either develop a cast list on Google Drive or put up a back room post that we use to show taken characters, I'm listing every pup I approve per month here along with their fandom. I'm also going to try to put pups I see active in Milliways here and maybe deletions and retirements.

Feel free to correct this information in a comment or to ping me with pups that need to go up here. Comments will be screened in the event of requests for player anonymity.


ACTIVE:

Bioshock (1, 2, and Infinite):

Eleanor Lamb, [personal profile] just_a_chemical - Contact via private message
Booker DeWitt, [personal profile] bet_on_the_river - Contact via private message

DC Universe:

Raven (Teen Titans cartoon), [personal profile] neverm0re

Elder Scrolls:

Sheogorath, [personal profile] sithis_shaped

Grease (movie):

Mrs. Murdock, [personal profile] is_the_motion

Hannibal (tv show):

Dr. Hannibal Lecter, [personal profile] cook_the_rude
Alanna Bloom, [personal profile] patterns_bloom
Will Graham, [personal profile] collects_strays - Contact via contact post

Les Miserables:

Jean Valjean, [personal profile] road_to_calvary
Javert, [personal profile] never_shall_yield
Enjolras, [personal profile] pro_patria_mortuus
Grantaire, [personal profile] the_obverse
Eponine Thenardier, [profile] the_rudderless
Madame Thenardier, [profile] la_femme_soldat
Thenardier, [personal profile] le_sergent
Fantine, [personal profile] dreamed_a_dream

Marvel Universe:

Mark Allan/Molten Man, [personal profile] moltenman

Once Upon A Time:

Peter, [personal profile] notthewolf

Psychonauts:

Sasha Nein, [personal profile] for_good_taste

Repo! The Genetic Opera:

Amber Sweet, [personal profile] addicted_to_the_knife

Robin Hood (2010 movie):

Robin Longstride, [personal profile] lambs_become_lions

Speed Racer (movie):

Inspector Detector, [personal profile] inspector_blueeyes

Ultraviolet (British TV series):

Father Pearse J. Harman, [personal profile] witchfinder_general




RETIREMENTS:

Carlotta Brown, [personal profile] fiery_ring; Enid Brown's St. Clair's series; retired Feb. 2014
gone_byebye: (thumbs up)
There's music pouring from well-concealed speakers in the Firehouse as Tyler arrives, and we do mean well-concealed. When a building's decorator corps includes a twenty-three-foot-tall transforming robot and a five-armed, five-eyed, five-brained alien from an arboreal species, the decorations get everywhere. The outside of the Firehouse is practically wrapped in strings of lights, and the inside- well. Someone introduced Jhalak to the concept of pine garland this year and she kind of went berserk with it. The tree in one corner is as sparkly as a north Jersey homeowner's attempt to get on the local news. Even the dinosaur skull hanging from the ceiling of the ground floor is decorated. Ecto's probably to blame for the dinosaur-sized Santa hat, though.

Which isn't to say that's the only holiday being marked here. Miss Eartha the golem has very firmly staked out part of the Firehouse's ground floor for Hanukkah, on the grounds that it was a Jewish ritual that got her into the golem body she now occupies and she feels a certain measure of gratitude for that. Janine's been helping her with that, and somewhat reluctantly Egon's been doing so as well. No sign of Kwanzaa on the premises, probably because Winston is as big of a Christmas man as you'll ever find, but someone tacked up several solar symbols and "Joyous Solstice!" messages. As a matter of fact, about the only sign that anyone here isn't celebrating something is the periodic snark of "Bah humbug!" from the fish tank on Janine's desk.

"Here we are, Tyler. How's that look to you?"

Chinatown

May. 20th, 2010 07:54 pm
gone_byebye: (Default)
The Firehouse isn't particularly far from Chinatown, at least not if you're in the mood for it. It's warm and sunny this time of day and year, so there's quite a few people on the streets of New York as Ray opens the door into the alley. "Come on, Tyler," he says. "Let's move before the spud decides to tag along."
gone_byebye: (aiiiiiigh)
The door opens on a firehouse in New York City in mid-September.

"There are tentacles in my kitchen and I did not put them there," announces Ray to no one in particular, "and frankly right now I think someone else needs to deal with them. Bar, what have you got that'll distract me from the fact that I desperately need coffee right now?"

The napkin covered in small-text snickering does not help much, but there'll at least be something to eat afterwards.
gone_byebye: (le sigh)
"I don't get it," Janine was saying as Ray came down the stairs. "This is like the fourth or fifth month in a row I've been getting all of these data charges on my bill. Am I hitting the internet button by mistake when I put it down on the desk or something?"

"It wasn't me," said Ecto. "I use the Firehouse's internet connection. Hi, Dad."

"Hi, kiddo. Morning, Janine," Ray said.

"Morning, Dr. Stantz. You're up early," Janine answered. "Hey, Ecto, you think you could maybe figure out what my phone's doing?"

"I can monitor it from now on, but I can't really go back through the records," the car said apologetically. "I don't have access to that kind of data."

"That's okay, just keep an eye on it for me." Janine set the iPhone down on her desk and pushed it towards the car. "Thanks."

"You're welcome. What's up, Dad? You're usually kind of a zombie first thing in the morning."

Ray shook his head. "I'm trying something to get ready for October this year," he said. "What with paranormal activity ramp-up starting earlier every year and all I thought I'd better get ready ahead of time."

"Ha," came a squeaky-voiced, sour laugh from the direction of Janine's desk.

"Quiet, you," Janine ordered Peck. The fish flickered one pectoral fin through its castle window in the closest approximation of a rude gesture a Siamese fighting fish can make, then ducked out of sight. "What kind of getting ready?"

"Caffeine detox," Ray said. "I haven't had coffee, cola, chocolate or Third Rail in a little over a week."

Janine stared, wide-eyed. Ecto let out a startled honk. Even the fish poked his head out of the castle for a moment. "Jeez, Dr. Stantz," Janine finally said, "you're committing suicide?"

"No! No, no," Ray hastily assured her. "I'm just going off the stuff for a while-"

"You did talk to a doctor about this, right?" Ecto said. "I know how much you drink, Dad."

"It's going to take a lot more than caffeine deprivation to kill me, Ecto," Ray said. "Trust me, I-"

"Believe me when I say I mean no worry or concern by this," said Peck, "but given your workload and your less-than-healthy means of coping with it, you must be out of your mind."

"Look, every October since Gozer first showed up's been a nonstop knockabout round of pure insanity from start to finish," Ray said. "Last year's incident went completely over the top, what with the arrival of both Great Cthulhu and Gozer's second Destructor incarnation. We haven't had any reported activity beyond the usual from either R'lyeh or the North Magnetic Pole this year, but that doesn't mean there isn't something waiting in the works, and I for one would like to be in a mental state where any decisions I may have to make regarding whatever's coming will be the product of a reasonably well-ordered mind not completely overclocked on caffeine and adrenaline beyond the chemical tolerances of the normal human brain."

"Nice lung capacity, Ray," came Peter's voice from the direction of the stairs. "That was what, seventy-five words before you remembered to stop and take a breath?"

"Some of us are better at conveying our thoughts all at once than others, Peter."

"Yeah, whatever. I'll go put on some decaf for you."

"Good luck," Janine said, "but I kinda have to agree with Peck on this one."
gone_byebye: (Default)
14 North Moore St
Manhattan
Mid-Afternoon


The door opens on a cloudy day in New York City; the air is cool, the winds are stirring, and the alley, as usual, has more than a few discarded papers and plastic bags blowing around. "Looks about right," Ray comments, stepping through. "Welcome to New York City, folks."
gone_byebye: (civvies)
Ray doesn't always look at the calendar when he should. Mostly this is because he doesn't need to. Janine tends to yell at anyone who's got an appointment if they show any signs of forgetting it, and if she doesn't, Ms. McGee the publicity agent does. Ecto tends to remind her father of dates that slip the minds of the two humans, too. Egon's taken to silently reminding everyone when the weekends are by wiping the appropriate letter off Miss Eartha's forehead to prevent a golem rampage, too, so overall there just isn't usually a need for it.

Once in a while, though, Ray does glance up at the calendar in the Firehouse kitchen, and that's when he gets twitchy.

Why he looked he didn't know and couldn't say, but it was September the second, this time. Given the PKE trends of the past few years he was pretty sure that meant they could start seeing the October rise in two to three weeks' time. Ever since the report from the Ministry of Extraordinary Threats that the magnetic poles were shifting abnormally quickly, possibly in response to Mythos attempts to locate the Hidden City, October seemed to start earlier and earlier. Busy season was coming, inevitable as the tide and snide jokes from Venkman.

He shuddered, turned deliberately away from the calendar, and ducked into the pantry to grab the one box of Chocodiles that hadn't been raided by Slimer. No, they weren't good for him, but there wasn't any other junk food around and he needed some fortification if he was going to handle this. Janine had asked him to speak to the snickering fish on her desk, and he had a sinking feeling that Peck's evilly good humor probably had to do with the time of year.

Three snack cakes later he headed down the stairs. "Hey, Janine," he called out.

"I told you he'd be coming," Janine snapped to the occupant of the ten-gallon tank at her elbow. "He's not that tied up yet."

"Give it time, my dear, give it time." The sometime-EPA-agent-turned-Siamese-fighting-fish flared his fins. "I've seen how you people work."

"You gotta do something, Dr. Stantz," said Janine as Ray approached her desk. "He's being a bigger pain in the ass than usual and I can't get a damn thing done."

Ray nodded and tapped on the tank with one finger; Peck had darted into the little fluorescent green castle Peter had bought for him some time ago. "Mr. Peck?" Ray called. "I believe we need to talk."

"I can't possibly imagine what you and I would have to talk about," called the fish from inside the castle. His voice was high and squeaky as always, a subject of suppressed mirth for Miss Eartha whenever she heard it, but Ray tended to mentally substitute Peck's original voice regardless. "I'm just a harmless fish, after all."

Ray sighed. "Mr. Peck, you've been antagonizing the one person in this Firehouse who's willing to feed you on a regular basis-"

"Assuming you can call that vile Hartz Mountain stuff food." Peck poked his head out the castle window a bit. "I'd like to formally lodge a complaint about that, by the way."

"The guy at the store said it was just as good," said Janine.

"'The guy at the store' doesn't have to eat that bilge." Peck's gill covers flared outward a moment.

"Yeah, well-"

Ray coughed; Janine threw a glare at the tank and subsided. "All right," Ray said to the fish. "We'll see about upgrading your diet if it's really that much of a problem."

"Do whatever you want. Personally, I don't care," Peck answered. "It's not as if it's going to be a problem for very much longer anyway."

"How do you mean?"

"Look at me, Dr. Stantz." The fish eased his way out through the castle window. "I'm an adult Siamese fighting fish, thanks to that gangling blond friend of yours. The average lifespan of my adopted species is two to three years."

Ray blinked; given that Peck's punitive metamorphosis had been imposed upon him in late 2007, and Ray had run afoul of the Stone Angels at Milliways in 2008, he'd completely lost track of time.

"Oh my God," said Janine, color draining from her face.

"Huh?" Ray glanced over at her. "I would think you would be-"

"Happy, Dr. Stantz?" inquired Peck. "Apparently you don't think things through as much as your secretary does. Perhaps you should refresh your memory of a certain visitor?"

"I don't-"

"He means that demon lawyer guy a couple of years back," said Janine. "Ray, you guys own Peck's soul, remember?"

Ray stared from Janine to the fish and back again.

"That means when this guy dies, unless Upstairs wants him, we're stuck with him."
gone_byebye: (augh)
Sleep at the Firehouse was a rare and wondrous thing sometimes, what with general business in the city, the time zone difference between the Lemurian embassy and New York, and the usual general chaos. Ray had taken to napping in random chairs when he couldn't sneak away to Milliways or Romana's TARDIS for his sleep.

Unfortunately, this didn't always work as well as he might hope. He jerked awake from his nap to a truly overwhelming smell of pistachio nuts and ectoplasm. "Slimer," he said without opening his eyes, "that had better not be you."

"Mnrgl."

"Am I going to have to start buying diet snack food for everyone in the firehouse? Because I'll do it if you wake me up after an unscheduled snack one more time."

"Gfranghn nnbbhl whf bnagn."

Ray cracked open one eye. "Seriously?"

The blob- which did indeed have pistachio nuts between its teeth- nodded vigorously.

"And Egon hasn't intervened?"

"Nazzl shibbn franga fnnn."

Ray ran a hand over his face. "You'd think Peter would just buy his own. Or that Janine would use that taser I know she keeps in her desk..."

From downstairs there came a sound of tremendous clattering, as one might expect from a high speed collision of human and furniture.

"Screw this. Iim going to Milliways," Ray decided.
gone_byebye: (bigtime geeks)
14 North Moore Street
Manhattan
January 1st, 2009
3:30 AM


"You know," said Winston as Ecto turned the corner and wheeled herself into the Firehouse garage, "that might've just been the single quietest New Year's Eve I've ever had in Times Square."

"You've done New Year's in Times Square before? You never struck me as the big crowd, big party type," Ray answered.

"Long time ago. Back before I'd even joined the Army." Winston shook his head, a moment's rueful smile of reminiscence on his face. "I'll tell you about it in the morning. I gotta get some sleep."

"That makes two of us," Ray said. "Thanks for driving, Ecto."

"No problem, Dad. Thanks for bringing me along on this one."

"We would've been crazy not to," Ray said. "Can you imagine the two of us trying to get anywhere by ourselves if anything actually had attacked the celebration?"

"Speaking of by ourselves," said Winston, "I thought I saw a light on upstairs. We'd better go check on Egon. Think you'll be okay, Ecto?"

"Yeah, I’m gonna watch the New Year celebrations in Fairbanks." Ecto settled back on her wheels and dropped into that faintly meditative silence that accompanied her devoting more than half of her attention to network input. Ray patted the car's front fender gently with one hand and headed for the stairs, falling in behind Winston.

Upstairs was just as quiet, and most of the lights were out. Ray's usual nightlight glowed faintly from the direction of the bunk room. There were no other lights on save for the gleam from under one of the lab doors; Winston stepped forward and rapped on the door sharply with his knuckles. "Egon, man, you awake in there?"

"To some degree, yes," answered the physicist's voice after a few moments' silence. "Whether I'm fully awake or not is debatable. Would you mind coming in and verifying something for me?"

Winston and Ray exchanged glances. "All right," Ray responded. "Do you need us to bring anything?"

"Not immediately. Although the PKE meter may turn out to be advisable in the event that I genuinely am awake."

"I'm getting my proton pack," Winston said.

"I wasn't going to be the one to suggest it, but thank you," came Egon's voice.

Ray frowned; that wasn't his usual tone at all, and it certainly didn't sound like mere sleep deprivation at work. He knew that tone from personal experience. "Are you sure you're all right in there, Spengs?"

"No, Ray, as a matter of fact I'm not. Hence the need for external verification. Is Winston back yet?"

"Almost."

"Good."

Ray glanced over his shoulder at the sound of footsteps, then turned back to the door. "Okay, he's here," he reported. He pulled his PKE meter from his belt and extracted the sensor arms. "We're coming in on the count of three. One, two-"

On three he opened the door to the sight of the normally-meticulous lab. . . looking pretty much like it always did. No spirits, no slime, no shimmering weak places in the fabric of local spatiotemporal planar reality. Just a lot of equipment, and a lot of books, and a stack of notebooks, and a number of complicated diagrams pinned to one of the walls- okay, that was new- and Egon, and a more or less humanoid figure of ruddy clay, about a foot taller than anyone else in the room, with the word אמת written on its forehead and a knowing little smile on its face.

"I need that reality check now, Ray," said Egon.
gone_byebye: (isn't it great?)
14 North Moore Street
Manhattan
December 31st, 2008
Afternoon


"Good luck, you three," said Venkman, his hand on the Firehouse door. "Times Square on New Year's Eve? I don't envy you."

"And here I thought you were the party animal," Winston answered. "You're getting old, Pete."

"Hey! I am still the party monster you've always known," Peter returned. "There's just not enough money in the city budget to get me to work in Times Square on New Year's Eve, that's all."

Ray smiled. "I don't mind," he said. "This is going to be the first New Year's I've ever spent at a party that big. Even if we are on duty."

"Have fun, Uncle Peter," Ecto chimed in. "And say hi to Dana for me."

"Sure thing, kiddo." Peter flashed Ecto a grin, waved to the others, and ducked out.

Winston shook his head. "Lucky skunk," he muttered. "You're seriously looking forward to this, Ray?"

"Sure! It'll be interesting to be part of something this big. It's not every day you're in the single most densely populated location on the entire planet, unless you live in Hong Kong."

"You're out of your mind." Winston shook his head. "Anything shows up that we have to respond to, we're gonna have to get through a million and a half screaming tourists too drunk off their butts to see us coming."

"We'll manage. One way or another." Ray smiled. "Right, Ecto?"

"I promise not to step on anybody," the hearse said.

"There you go."

"Whatever." Winston rolled his eyes and slid into the driver's seat. "Meanwhile I just wanna know what Egon's doing. Janine's with her family out in Canarsie, right?"

"I don't know, honestly," Ray said. "If he's not in his lab he's probably either up at the Met or over at the Soho synagogue."

"The thought of that man walking into a house of worship and nobody ending up in a fistfight-" Winston shook his head again. "Is it just me, or does that just seem wrong somehow?"

"He's probably just going through their libraries. I checked out their website after I saw him going in. They offer courses in aspects of kabbalah considered safe for the general public, so I'm betting they've got onsite reference materials that caught his attention. Ever since all the stuff that happened back in 1905 he's been stocking up on books on that particular approach to the paranormal."

"... yeah, okay. I can see that."
gone_byebye: (whoa)
There were two Christmases for Ray last year. It was a thing. True, one of them was in 1930, and the other one had come two months later in 2008 thanks to the peculiarities of time and Milliways, but that was how it stood: there had been two Christmases for Ray last year. When the day came around in 2008 he half expected to sleep through it. It didn't seem right, after all, to have two of a day in a given year and not balance it out somehow.

But when December the 25th rolled around he woke up just the same as always, which is to say with Slimer jabbering excitedly at him and Peter gleefully smirking about having set the spud on someone else for once. Oh, and with Jhalak jumping up and down on the bed yammering gleefully about Christmas. In all five voices. At once.

At any rate, that was Christmas morning. There were presents, of course. There always were. Peter excused himself early to go and find Dana, and Egon's sole concession to the day before retreating back to his lab was a sequin-covered Santa hat jammed on his head at an odd angle, but Winston's sister and her children came by. Ray's sister phoned, and sounded genuinely happy about it, which was a step up from what he had expected. And there were the cards from people who couldn't call: one from Defense Secretary Keller, one from a Texaco owner in upstate New York, one each from Laken-Makai's and Ost-h'ryth's families, one from Africa's foremost primatologist and cryptozoologist, fourteen from various Bentons Fraser, and one- Ray did not want to know how it was delivered, frankly- from Morgannon.

It was the last that stuck with him come nightfall. If Morgannon, who admittedly was an in-world entity and a representative of the Inferno, could reach him even peripherally, so could other beings. Given what had happened last New Year, he was understandably a little reluctant to attempt sleep for the night. He tucked Jhalak in, though, and he bid Ecto a good night before she settled into her usual evening surveillance routine, and then he went upstairs to sit on the roof in his Dyer Expedition parka and watch the skies.

It occurred to Ray after a while that the temperature was dropping rapidly into ranges that his parka was actually properly suited for, and that clouds were starting to roll in from the northwest. He fumbled once or twice as he fished the PKE meter out from under the furs. That it responded instantly was no surprise at all; that it responded in the ranges it did- well. No Outsider ever pinged like that. And Blond Egon's numbers didn't match either-

A blast of wind cold enough to cut down to the bone interrupted Ray's speculation, the first real snow that he'd seen all winter spinning along with it and catching him full in the face. When it cleared he was not alone.

He'd sort of expected that part. The three horses pulling the troika, not so much.

They were great dark animals, as dark as the spaces between stars in the parts of the world where no human agency was yet strong enough to leave a stain of light on the sky. Their manes and tails were silver-white, glittering in ways no horse's fur ought to be able to glitter, and the long, feathery fur of their legs below the knees glimmered much the same. Their harnesses and bridles were hung with tiny bells that made a shimmering sound at the slightest movement. Ray started to reach out one hand to the one in the center. It snorted, the steam of its breath crystallizing instantly into a million tiny pieces of icefall, and he dropped his hand immediately.

"A wise move," said a woman's voice. He jerked his attention away from the beasts to the two passengers they had been pulling. The smaller of the two was a girl or young woman. Ray couldn't have pegged her age for all the money in Manhattan, and didn't want to try. She was bundled up to her chin in a shimmering blue coat trimmed in white furs, with a round cap of matching design and color on her head. Her companion, on the other hand, wore a long red garment that more resembled a robe than a coat. True, it was trimmed in equally heavy furs, but it was half-covered in gold embroidery that must have added pounds to its weight. There might have been similar tooling on the round fur cap he wore, but if there were, Ray couldn't see any of it. His beard (not properly white, but of the same crystalline glimmer-color as the horses' manes) fell almost to his lap.

The man- startlingly skinny for all the bulk the ankle-length red robes added- reached for a staff quite possibly as long as Ray was tall and swung himself out of the sled. It occurred to Ray as the snow crunched under the man's feet that he had no idea who these people were. "Uh," he managed awkwardly. "Merry Christmas, sir, and welcome to New York City. Might I ask who it is I have the honor of addressing?"

The bearded man chuckled, a quiet little sound of satisfaction nothing at all like the booming, boisterous laugh Ray had half been expecting. "As you wish," he said, his accent thick but comprehensible. "One doesn't expect to be known on sight outside the Motherland. I am Ded Moroz, and this is my granddaughter, Snegurochka."

It'd been years since Ray had had to speak Russian aloud, but those names came through loud and clear: Grandfather Frost and the Snow Maiden.

"More often we travel on the night of Christmas in the old calendar. We are paying a few visits tonight, that is all," Ded Moroz continued. "Social calls, so to speak."

"Wow, sir, you have no idea how completely and utterly unprepared I am for this," Ray blurted. "I mean, if I'd had any idea you were coming I would've had some kind of supper ready or something- I can get the two of you a drink, at least-"

Ded Moroz chuckled again and shook his head. "Unnecessary. But I thank you. As I said, this is only a social call. We passed through Moscow some time ago, for the sake of those of the Motherland who don't observe the old calendar, and President Antonov mentioned this place and its people. We thought to say hello before pursuing the rest of our journey. And who knows? Maybe we'll come back in a few days' time. There are children here."

"We'll be ready for you," Ray promised. "I mean. You are aware of the nature of the children in question?"

"Very much so," said Ded Moroz. "A child is a child, no matter how they were born or how many arms and eyes they have. I wouldn't worry if I were you, Dr. Stantz. I know my business."

He paused, glancing at Ray to be sure he was paying attention.

"And a part of my business is to remind people of this: there are many, many powers abroad in this world and out of it. Remember, please, that not all of them wish you ill."

".... yessir."

"Stout fellow," said Ded Moroz approvingly. "Now go downstairs and go to sleep. You're up much too late tonight."
gone_byebye: (bust this)
When Christmas Eve 2008 dawned at the Firehouse, Ecto was already awake. Not that she had ever gone to sleep in the first place. She never slept. There was always something to draw her attention somewhere, whether it was a financial market result on the other side of the world or a message from one of the other four intelligent machines she'd discovered, or even an interesting scientific result coming back from one of the hundreds of processor timeslices she'd bought on other computers scattered across dozens of countries. Regardless, when Christmas Eve dawned in 2008, she was already awake, a fact which put her well ahead of the humans with whom she lived.

"Morning, Mr. Peck," she called softly to the fish on Janine's desk. "Merry almost Christmas."

"Is that meant as some kind of a joke?" the fish snapped back in its squeaky, helium-balloon voice. "I fail to see what's so merry about it."

"Where there's life there's hope, Mr. Peck. I know you don't like being a fish, but it could be a whole lot worse."

"Yes, I can read the news, thank you," the fish snarled. (If anything in that vocal register could truly be considered snarling, anyway.) "When Miss Melnitz leaves the newspaper where I can see it, at any rate. I'm well aware that you people claim to have saved the world yet again."

"Just doing our jobs," Ecto said. "Somebody's got to protect the people."

"Oh, please. Your so-called father didn't even fire a proton pack-"

"Mr. Peck, what did I tell you about saying nasty things about Dad last time?" Ecto's tone was suddenly stern. "Do you want to go back to the Hartz Mountain fish food?"

"... no." The fish folded its fins sulkily.

"Okay then." Ecto settled back on her suspension. "You just remember that when Lieutenant Chen comes in today."

"What does he want with you people?"

"He's got a New Year's Eve request from the city," says Ecto. "Daddy and Uncle Winston and I're gonna be on duty in Times Square this year, just in case."

"Just in case of what?" the fish asked, almost unwillingly.

"Just... you know. In case."
gone_byebye: (oh god it's gonna eat me)
I don't know if any of you guys are still out there, but I know over the past year I've had the occasional indicator of interest from people reading this journal who may or many not read Ray's Milliways posts. This is addressed to you guys.

I'm sorry it took me so long to finish the October plot and set up Gozer vs. Cthulhu. I'm also sorry that I decided to convey the ending of that plot to Milliwaysers in a purely IC fashion, rather than writing it up as an OOM. Since I know the possibility exists that some of you may be interested in seeing how it ended, I'd like to point you at the threads where Ray tells his Milliways friends exactly what happened instead.

Ray tells Tyler Marlocke

Ray tells Annabelle Newfield

I'd been planning to end it this way for months, but couldn't figure out how to write it properly, so this seemed like the best way to convey it without blowing the whole thing. Thank you for your patience, and I'll do my best not to pull this on you again.
gone_byebye: (reach)
Ray works mostly with the spirits of the dead. They're simple enough. You start with a living person, with their thoughts; you feed them emotion, dedication, obsession, purpose- you give them charge and focus. Focus becomes attachment, a binding between the realm of the living and the dead; when the time comes and the person dies, their spirit fails to completely breach the Wall, and a part of them remains behind. Maybe it's an accident. They happen often enough. Maybe it's on purpose. There's records galore of this or that person who vowed to make their killers (or their families, or something) regret their deaths. What matters is that when the time comes, whether it's through thought or pure charged emotion, a part of them refuses to let go.

The ghosts that wander Ray's world are, for the most part, torn and incomplete beings. The low-level ghosts outnumber the high-level ones, because it's far more common for a person on the verge of death to have such a spike of regret, or of odd fixation on something that remains undone that the one part alone fails to let go. Such ghosts are creatures of emotional strength and little thought, their energies drawn from the etheric plane that sustains all spirits, swirling around a central cortex. The more potent ghosts are the ones born of purpose or of mental acuity. They have enough invested in themselves, or their world, or their lives that they actively resist the final crossing. Low-level ghosts are torn, failing things, forgotten selves with only aspects to draw upon; higher-level are incomplete, but still themselves. They have volition and will, where others have only impulse.

But they, too, are ultimately torn, because the world of the living is not for them. A living being is spirit and matter both; a ghost, spirit only. Even one of the innumerable other beings of the etheric plane, such as a demon or an Outsider, does not entirely belong in the realm of the living. They can be banished, barred; they can fall prey to barrier and condition and timing. For all their trying they cannot quite make the world of the living their own.

It leads to anger, and- yes- to fear, and suffering, both from those who've died and those who live on, wanting to know what lies beyond, or what became of others. And it leads to confusion and misconception, when it deals with spirits who never were of this plane to begin with. It's a bad situation all around.

It comes of having walls. What was meant as protection, or even only as filter, becomes challenge and insult and grounds for fear. There are other ways of separating realms, and Ray is familiar enough with one of them. He did, after all, note to Peter once that he was present at an undersea, unexplained, mass sponge migration.And the realm of the sea is as alien and strange in its own ways as the realm of the dead...

This is how you build it, then.

Whatever beings may live on the world yet unknown and yet unnamed, they are beings of mind and spirit as well as matter. Let their spirit world be present in their everyday lives; let the living and the dead interact, if they need to. But make it such that the strength of the spirits and their world surges and recedes, never touching all the world at once and leaving some areas alone entirely. Let there be spirit realms into which only the most potently prepared explorers can venture, and even then never for very long; else why live? Death and life are natural, and all that exists will die someday.

(He won't admit to the other possibility. A new world should not be built with a door for the Outsiders to intrude. Cthulhu and his ilk may touch on his universe from their own strange realms, but not this one.)

The spirit tides are a part of the new world's existence, and always will be- and with that metaphor comes another: the tide-pools. There will be places, times, spaces in the day when patches of the spirit realm's touch remain even though all the rest has fallen back. The tide-pools are where those unwilling to go into the Deeps and fully become spirit stay. Their own ecosystem, as it were- hard work to maintain, and only for the tenacious, but a place where living and dead can meet for a time and intermingle without wrongness. When the tides rise again, and fall again, they can leave or not as they like.

All life came from the sea in the beginning; all life returns to the sea in the end.
gone_byebye: (oh god it's gonna eat me)
On December the second of 1940 the United States and the United Kingdom clinched a deal. In exchange for fifty destroyers with which the British government could fight Hitler on the high seas, the United States was granted land in a number of British possessions, for the purpose of establishing naval or air bases on ninety-nine year rent-free leases. One such base, Beane AFB, lies on the western coast of St. Lucia.

It was quite natural, of course, for the pilots at Beane to be on alert that October night given what had just happened in the Pacific. It was similarly quite natural for them to scramble all their jets immediately when the two-hundred-foot bogey appeared on the radar due south of their position and started heading westward.

They probably didn't expect the orders to swing south to Mustique and pick up four passengers and their nuclear accelerators, though.



"Whooooeee." The Hornet pilot shakes his head, squinting out the jet's window. "That Gozer guy's hauling some serious ass."

"No more than we are," says Ray. He's trying not to let the jet's motions get to him. Ray's all right with flying, but small planes move around far too much for his liking, and even a full-sized multipurpose fighter like the Hornet still qualifies as 'small' compared to the beasts that take off from La Guardia. "We're all in the same boat this time."

"Yeah, but I've got a jet to do it with," the pilot points out. "That guy's about as aerodynamic as a brick. Hey, how's your passenger holding up back there?"
gone_byebye: (aiiiiiigh)
"So, uh," began Peter as Stanley and Gladys took their positions on the roof of the Mustique Island hotel, "question for you, Ray."

Ray fiddled with the strap of his proton pack. It was more than a little disturbing how familiar the Sumerian temple architecture looked, even here in the land of hurricanes. "What, Peter?"

The chanting started. There hadn't been chanting last time. Then again, there hadn't been Gozer cultists last time.

"If you're right, and this guy can beat Cthulhu..."

Overhead the clouds began to gather, swirling and circling into one with an unwholesome purplish light.

"What do we do with him afterwards? If he can punch out a Great Old One-"

The chanting got louder. Ray was trying very hard not to listen to it, but it wasn't easy.

"-then what makes you think we've got any kind of chance against him?"

"Mostly I'm hoping that Cthulhu puts up enough of a fight that even this form's resources will be severely depleted by the time it's all over," Ray said. "It's not exactly the most honorable way in the world to win a fight, admittedly-"

Lightning seared across the Caribbean skies, illuminating the 'are you on crack or something, Ray?' look on Winston's face, and the nearly identical one on Egon's.

"-but given the alternatives I don't really think fairness ought to enter into it. And we may just have an opportunity to try to get to Milliways for help at the last moment. Hang on tight, Jhalak, my readings are spiking."

A weird, unearthly wail joined the cultists' chanting, the wind howling up out of nowhere, spinning in mad circles around the rooftop. It was all Ray could do to hold his footing. Lightning followed moments after, striking in so many places around the rooftop that it was all but impossible to see. Thunder rolled-

"What the hell is going on?" Winston yelled. "I don't remember this happening before!"

"Gozer didn't have active worshippers to bring him through last time," Egon shouted back. "Just the building. The amount of effort being actively put forth right now is phenomenal!"

KRRRRAKOOOM.

Oh, great, Ray thought as he reflexively pawed at his eyes in the wake of the roof-wide thunderbolt. I can't see a thing.

Then again, he didn't have to. In the moment of whirling winds that followed, a booming, gravel-growling voice he and the other Ghostbusters knew only too well rang out:

"SUBCREATURES! GOZER THE GOZERIAN, GOZER THE DESTRUCTOR, LORD OF THE SEBOUILLIA, VOLGUUS ZILDROHAR, THE TRAVELLER HAS COME."

There was a moment of silence.

"ARE THESE FOUR MEANT AS A SACRIFICE?"

"N- no, dread Lord." Ray's vision had cleared fractionally, enough to see the palely terrified face of Gladys and Stanley's grandson. "I- I realize they're your enemies, but-"

Ray flinched away from Gozer's wrath just in time to preserve his vision. When he looked back, the young cultists lay sprawled in an ungainly heap against the base of one of the temple spires. "EXPLAIN YOURSELVES," thundered the god.

He swallowed, and forced himself to take a step forward. "Gozer the Gozerian?"

If it had the same form as last time, Ray didn't see it. The light from all around was too eye-watering to make out more than a pair of blazing red rageful eyes. He almost thought he could hear a hissed 'You again' on the wind.

"As a duly-constituted representative of the United States Paranormal Responder Corps, and on behalf of Mustique Island, the Caribbean region, the southern Pacific region, the United States of America, the Planet Earth and all its inhabitants... you have competition."

The red eyes narrowed. A sense of bared teeth and a barely suppressed growl filled the air.

Fighting the urge to pull his shoulders up around his ears, Ray continued. "And in light of that fact I have been authorized by your present surviving followers to make the choice of your incarnate form." He paused. "Again."

There were no words, only a sense of baleful promise; if there were any repeats of last time...

Ray closed his eyes and concentrated.

"THE CHOICE IS AN ACCEPTABLE ONE," thundered Gozer at last. "YOU WILL EXIST A WHILE LONGER."

"Why doesn't that make me feel better?" Peter muttered as the god's already vaguely-defined form suddenly wreathed itself in green fire. Ray backed up hurriedly; the sparks and flames streaking in from every direction to join the swirling energy mass weren't exactly reassuring, either.

"You sure you got it right, Ray?" asked Winston. "Looks like he's gonna explode, to me."

"Positive, Winston," says Ray. "Trust me, I can't not remember every single detail of this form. I'm not going to blow our only chance."

"He's spiking," Egon reported tersely. "Everyone cover your eyes!"

The final blaze of light seared through closed eyelids and hands alike. Ray would've fallen over backwards, if Peter hadn't been there to block his fall. "Sorry, Pete-"

"Just get off me!"

"Okay, okay, I-"

Three words seared through the world around them, silencing all other thought: "I LIVE AGAIN."

And Ray looked up- and up, and up, and up- and saw that he had, indeed, chosen the form of the Destructor.
gone_byebye: (civvies)
The Gozer worshippers- Stanley, Gladys, their grandson, the handful of other people- are staring at the Ghostbusters. Finally, Stanley clears his throat. "What do you mean, 'someone beat Gozer to the punch'?"

"I mean exactly what I said, Mr. Wolcott," says Egon. There's a peculiar gleam in his eye. "One of the most powerful, if not the most powerful, of the Great Old Ones capable of manifesting on Earth just awoke in the South Pacific."

"And judging from the fact that the Waller Protocols didn't work he's already survived at least one direct nuclear strike," Ray adds. "Which means that not only is he physically manifest, he's physically manifest, angry, and radioactive."

Stanley and Gladys eye the Ghostbusters, then turn to their own group. After a moment, Gladys says, "Just how dangerous is this Cthulhu fellow, anyway?"

"They used a nuclear weapon on him," Winston points out. "You don't think that's enough?"

"And you boys run around with those nuclear zap machines," Gladys points out. "I read that Discover article on your gear way back when. You four fellows are just as dangerous."

"I'm flattered, really," says Peter. "Seriously, though, this Cthulhu guy is bad news. Really bad news."

"Frankly, ma'am, he makes your god look like Little Mary Sunshine by comparison," Ray says. "I've spent a good quarter of a century studying up on Cthulhu lore and believe me, there is nothing like him in the annals of recorded theology in anybody's religion."

"Mostly because anybody human who encounters him for long enough goes too completely and irrevocably insane to record it," Egon adds. "The level of destruction and madness Cthulhu brings to everything around him without even taking action is unprecedented in human history-"

"So he'd be doing Gozer's work for him, then?"
gone_byebye: (dammit...)
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Uruguayan Fishing Vessel Vieras-1
Vicinity of 48°52.6′S 123°23.6′W
Captain's Quarters


"Are they still on our six, Bauzá?" asked Hector Forteza without lifting his head. The fishing boat's captain hadn't slept in days- not since the Australians had come after them- and no longer trusted his own judgment.

"No, Captain." Bauzá shook his head. "The Coast Guard dropped off the radar some time ago. Are you all right?"

"I wish." Forteza ran his hand over his face. "This whole trip has been nothing but fiasco from beginning to end."

Bauzá glanced at his captain, trying to judge how much Forteza meant what he was saying. Finally he said, "It was a good idea in theory. The toothfish haul was fantastic."

"You don't have to make me feel better." Forteza shook his head. "A nation doesn't send ships with men with guns after foreign fishing boats and then just let them go. There'll be Australian lawmen waiting at the docks in Montevideo. We're all screwed. You watch."

"Well, we were fishing in their waters," Bauzá said. "That was factored in, though, wasn't it? We all knew-"

"Captain!" came a cry from Vieras-1's main deck. "Captain, come quickly!"

Forteza shook himself off and jumped to his feet. That was one of the Hierro brothers, and neither Raumar nor Luis was the kind of man to get excited lightly. "What's happening?" he called back.

"Just get up here! Now!"

Forteza swore.

Bauzá reached the cabin first, but it didn't much matter. Forteza was right behind him, and Raumar Hierro was all but hopping up and down and flailing his arms. "Captain," he said, pointing at the ship's instrument panel, "look at the bottom scan, first, and then ."

Forteza blinked, but did as he was told. After a moment's staring at the navigational display he said, very quietly, "I haven't slept since Sunday morning, Hierro. Is the ocean floor supposed to be that close?"

"No! It's not! And neither are they!" Hierro jabbed a finger towards the sonar, where-

"Madre de Dios. The Australians called their friends," was all Forteza could think to say at the sight. There were at least twenty vessels closing in on their position from all sides.

"What do you want us to do?" Bauzá asked. "Run for it?"

This was not the sort of thing a man wanted to have to deal with unless he had a good deal more coffee in him than Forteza did; he rubbed at his eyes, trying to think-

"Attention," crackled the radio suddenly. "Fishing vessel Vieras-1, this is the captain of the People's Liberation Army Navy destroyer Harbin. Your course leads you into internationally forbidden waters-"

"What the hell is he talking about?" Forteza demanded of the other men. "What internationally forbidden waters? We're nowhere near the Antarctic sanctuary!"

"-reverse course immediately or face full military sanction-"

There was a burst of static and another voice overrode the first. "Vieras-1, this is the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force Chikuma-"

Another crackle. "-guided missile destroyer USS Pinckney-"

"Jesus Christ, Captain, who did we piss off?"

"Captain," said Hierro quietly, "the sea bottom is rising…"
gone_byebye: (not good)
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Mustique Island
St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Mustique Company Private Airport


"Hey, Ray?" said Peter, peering out the small plane's window as it rolled towards the end of the runway. "The natives are restless."

"That's not funny, Peter."

"No, seriously, have a look."

Ray squinted out the window himself. A party of about twenty people had gathered near their jetway. Several of them were carrying what looked like protest signs. "That's weird," he commented. "Anti-American protests, you think?"

"Ray, this is one of the most exclusive private resort islands in the hemisphere," Egon commented from his seat. "I doubt those signs read 'Yankee go home'. This is something else."

"What do you-"

"This island and at least six others in the Grenadines, not to mention five others elsewhere in the Caribbean, have all been plagued by massive supernatural activity in the past year, spiking in the last several weeks. The area has no coordinated anti-paranormal response plan of any kind. If anything, they're probably demanding to know why we're only showing up now."

"I don't think it's that simple," muttered Winston. "Check 'em out, guys, they're all old..."
gone_byebye: (civvies)
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
14 North Moore Street
Manhattan


Ray really should've seen it coming.

Not the phone call from Washington. He knew that was coming the instant Dr. Tsybenko submitted the most heavily profanity-laced facsimile the Firehouse had ever received, regarding the sudden and vicious phenomenological onset in the Caribbean. Not the news from the Australian Coast Guard regarding the Vieras-1, the Uruguayan fishing vessel that'd been dropping nets recklessly in Lemurian waters; he'd been tracking that boat just in case, because nothing said 'diplomatic incident' quite like making a sentient population into fried calamari. Not even the constant stream of cackling and muttering from Walter Peck's fishbowl. That was sort of inevitable.

No, what Ray should've seen coming was the part where he opened the door to the side alley that he and Jhalak always used to get into Milliways and saw only an alley...

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Raymond Stantz

February 2014

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