contains muppet humor and mention of supernatural events and eccentric musical personalities.
Disclaimer: I hold no legal rights to anybody from the Muppet Show - Henson Puppetry does. I hold no legal rights to the Ghostbusters, though I'm not sure who does. I hold no rights to the mentioned personality of Alice Cooper, who presumably belongs to himself and the record company.
Distribution: Mental Wanderings, Mystifying Dreams, Twisting, Muppet Zone - if anyone else actually wants it, just ask.
notes: set sometime after Ghostbusters movie #1 and after the episode with Special Guest Star Alice Cooper on the Muppet Show. :words in colons: are over a telephone.
The ringing of one of the phones caused Janine to sigh as she reached to lift the handset. "Ghostbusters, how can I help you?"
:We've got a few ghosts at our theater, and we'd like some people to get them to go away.: The voice sounded worried, and nervous, and most likely belonged to a young man.
"Can you tell me a few things about these ghosts? What are they doing, are they violent?" It would certainly make things easier for the guys if they knew what to expect.
:Well, they sort of look like floating sheets with arms and faces. Not really hands, but...well, ghosty. You can see through them. They haven't tried to hurt anyone yet...: There was a crashing sound and someone shrieking. :It's awfully disturbing when they just go through things or people though.:
"I suppose it would be. How many spirits are there?" She could feel herself relaxing, assured that this should be one of the simple runs.
:Well, we're not entirely sure. We haven't seen more than three at a time, but they've been all over, and they don't exactly have too many distinguishing features...: He sounded apologetic.
"Alright, that's pretty good. Now, I just need the address of your theater, and I can send out the guys. They'll take care of your problem." She could feel herself smiling as he told her the details.
Pressing the buzzer, she called out, "Guys! We've got a customer!"
end part 1.
The pale figure floated across the hall, swaying unevenly, one arm shaking as if in time to a drumbeat. "Scooter! Didn't you say you were right on top of getting rid of those guys?"
"Absolutely, Kermit." The voice of his assistant emerged from the closet, and a towering mass of boxes emerged, speaking with Scooter's voice. "But nothing that anyone here suggested got anywhere."
Rubbing his head just behind his eyes, Kermit sighed. "Are you telling me that we're stuck with those guys forever?"
"Kermie! Where are the props for my musical number?" The voice of Miss Piggy carried through the theater, piercing the darkness.
"I've got those! They were packed and stuffed into..." Scooter tripped on the lowest stair, and the mass of boxes toppled, falling in an uneven spill up the stairs. Boxes rattled and thumped, some falling lower on the stairs as if seeking to return to their place of hiding.
Over Scooter, one of the ghosts emerged from the wall, paused to survey the sprawling mess, and then continued across the open air. It rather looked like it was laughing.
"I called in some professionals." Scooter looked at his boss, and gave a shaky smile. "They're the best in the business."
Kermit glanced at the mess of boxes and shook his head. "We need to get these over to the stage so they can get ready for Piggy's act. So, who did you call?"
Arms laden with boxes, they moved across the darkened stage. The ghost was there, hovering behind Fozzy and making faces as the comedian practiced his jokes. Scooter sighed, passing the boxes to one of the stage hands. "Well, they're the best guys in the business. Ghost removal is their specialty."
The sound of Scooters reply was almost drowned out by the sound of a cannon firing in one of the back rooms overlapping Electric Mayhem practicing for their songs.
"Scooter! They aren't the best at what they do, they're just the only people crazy enough to do that for a living!" Kermit gaped at his assistant, wondering if everything was finally starting to get to Scooter.
"Well, who else am I gonna call?" Scooter retorted.
Kermit sighed, pressing his mouth together in a crumple. "Well, I guess there really isn't anyone else. I just hope they know what they're doing."
"Who knows what?" Rolf asked, pushing his piano towards the stage. "Is someone doing something about those ghosts?"
"Absolutely!" Scooter insisted, putting the last box on the floor. "I called the professionals."
"So, who did you call?" Rolf asked.
"I called the Ghostbusters." Scooter admitted.
"The Ghostbusters? Aren't those the guys who.." Rolf paused, thinking about the events of a few months ago. "Better make sure we've got a lot of hot chocolate. They'll probably bring the marshmallows."
end part 2.
Winston glanced again at the paper in his hand, frowning at the building and the address. Some theater with some annoying spirits... He couldn't quite decipher Janine's handwriting. It started with an M, but the rest of the word could have been anything. "I guess this is the place."
Peter Venkman looked at the brick building, patched repeatedly and at many different times, the bricks and mortar no longer any consistent shade. Hefting one of the ghost traps, he walked towards the door. "It's just a couple free roving spirits. Nothing to worry about."
The door opened to a small office, with a round faced old man behind a window, sorting envelopes. He glanced up, squinting at them through round wire frame glasses. "Ehh? Packages?"
"No, we're hear to bust some ghosts." Peter replied, eyes rolling slightly.
"Crusts of toast? The lounge is down the hall..." The man muttered, and glanced back at his papers.
There was a sudden chill to the air, and a pale shape floated through a wall. Paler wisps trailed after the spirit, and it looked at them, shaking its head and body from side to side as it drifted closer to the old man. Grinning, it turned from the Ghostbusters to poke a finger at the old man.
One oddly round hand swatted through the ghost. "Shoo! Someone ought to do something about those floating bed sheets. You boys get rid of them and you can have all the toast you can eat."
"err..." Peter blinked, staring at the old man.
"I think he's at least half deaf, and he might not see very well." Winston offered, and pointed at the spirit. "We've got a job to do."
"Right, let's bust this bed sheet." Peter dropped the trap, kicking it towards the old man currently being poked by what certainly looked like a floating bed sheet. "Zap it, Zeddmore."
Winston aimed the proton ray, and squeezed out the thinnest blast that he could manage. It caught the see-through bed sheet, and round eyes somehow got bigger, even as chips of paint and crumbling bricks flaked from the wall to hover in a vortex.
Peter stomped on the trap control, and the spirit and bits of wall were sucked inside. The trap closed with a hissing noise and a big clang, containing the spirit.
"It's about time someone got the fans working again back here." The old man remarked, squinting towards them. "Repairmen? Go on towards the front and give Kermit your bill."
"Maybe we should hope that this Kermit guy can actually see?" Peter muttered, looping the cord to lift the trap from the floor again. Glancing at the blinking lights on the side, he grinned. "And we can still put a couple more in here."
They opened the door to reveal utter chaos.
end part 3.
There was a sort of brown dog playing the piano. A bear was staggering away from a stage, bits of tomato clinging to tan fur as he tried to straighten his polka dotted tie. The sounds of a crowd jeering and booing carried easily. A penguin with a trumpet scurried towards the curtain, and a pair of chickens perched on the banister for the stairs.
"Get out of my dressing room!" The shout was an angry demand, shortly followed by "Hiiiyaa!" and another of the bed-sheet ghosts flying out through a door on the second floor.
Mugs of hot cocoa were everywhere.
"I guess these guys heard about the marshmallow man." Winston muttered, grinning at the assortment of cups. "Think you guys can spare one for me?"
"Sure thing, guys." The creature speaking could only be described as a frog. "Scooter was hoping that you could get those ghosts out of here, they're starting to cause problems."
"Where did they come from?" Peter asked, looking at the door where the spirit was floating, half in and half out of a dressing room.
"Well..." The frog shrugged, and looked uncomfortable. "They showed up with one of our special guests, and apparently he forgot to take them away with him."
"What kind of special guest brings ghosts?" Peter demanded.
"Alice Cooper." The reply came from a short blue... thing with a long nose that curled around, and big round eyes. He was carrying a trumpet. "That guy was weird."
"That explains a few things." Winston nodded, remembering the concert that they'd had to clean up after. He didn't even know what half of those things had been.
"Umm, right. Can you just get rid of those ghosts, please?" The frog asked. "There will be cocoa enough for everyone, but I'd like it if we could get moving, we have a show to put on."
"Sure thing, frog." Peter pulled his proton accelerator, and grinned. "Let's bust some ghosts!"
Winston moved towards the door, and slid a trap towards the ghosts, ducking as the proton ray caught the ghost. It also shattered the door, sending a spray of splinters everywhere. Looking at the control only, he punched the pedal that opened the trap, listening to the humming whine of the trap opening and sucking down the spirit.
"Ahhh! What happened to my door?" The shriek was not what he'd expected, and there was... Well, he could only say that she looked like a walking pig with curlers in her hair and pearl earrings.
"Just trying to bust some ghosts, ma'am." He replied, uncertain quite what sort of theater this really was. Frogs, penguins, dogs, bears, and that blue thing... It definitely wasn't what he was used to.
"We'll get you a new door, Piggy. One with your name on it." The frog spoke reassuringly. "I think there was one in the back room, bothering our clerk."
"Got him already." Peter's voice was smug.
"Kermit?" The man had the biggest, squarest teeth and the wildest hair that they'd seen on a person. "Animal's trying to eat one of those bed sheets. Something about it messing with his drums."
"He's what? But we already know that doesn't work." The frog replied, and then shook his head. "Just... take these ghost busters back and let them get that ghost."
"Right, come on this way." The guy turned and started towards the backstage area.
"What sort of person tries to eat a ghost?" Peter murmured, fingers running along the proton accelerator's barrel.
"I think we're about to find out." Winston replied.
end part 4.
The first thing they noticed was the band set up. There was a half circle of drums, a woman with big lips and dreadlocks holding a microphone, and several instruments in racks. There was another of the floating bed sheet spirits trying to evade an orange snapping something with wild reddish hair and a wide mouth full of teeth. Broken chains dangled from shackles on the orange something's wrists, and he would leap at the spirit, jaws snapping closed.
"My drums! Mine!"
"That's Animal. He's a bit touchy about the drum set." The man with the teeth commented, as if this sort of thing happened all the time.
Peter slid the trap towards the middle of the floor, and then they started to blast at the fluttering spirit. Unfortunately, they kept missing.
Chunks of brick and ash flew from the wall. A light bulb shattered, spraying bits of glass everywhere. The stage curtains caught fire. The guy with the teeth screamed and dove towards the closet.
The trap finally opened, and sucked the ghost down. It also caught the snarling creature.
Animal then defied everything that they'd learned to expect from something caught in the traps by flinging out scrawny looking arms to catch the sides of the trap, preventing himself from being sucked inside. With a growl, he then slowly lifted himself upwards, in defiance of the traps suction, and placed one orange foot on the edge before using it to flip himself out.
The trap closed with a forceful clang.
"Bye bye, ghost." Animal growled, rattling his chains.
Ignoring the Ghostbusters, he then went to inspect his drums. The bits of brick and shards of glass seemed to make no impression on him at all.
Scooter was using a fire extinguisher on the burning curtains, and the blue weirdo was throwing buckets of water on them. The crowd was laughing, apparently unconcerned by the flames, the proton blasts, or the ghosts.
"Sorry about the curtains." Winston told the frog.
"Don't worry, we get a lot of problems. They'll be fixed soon enough." He shrugged, and gestured towards the still steaming mugs. "Have some cocoa."
Peter blinked as the wild drumbeat started. "You're going on with the show?"
"Well, you know what they say - the Show must go on." The frog sipped at his mug, which read 'the Muppet Show.'
"Right." Peter shook his head. "We'll send you our bill."
"Since you're here, would you like to be tonight's very special guests?"
The offer caught them by surprise.
"Err... I guess so." Peter replied.
Winston blinked, and looked at the frog. "Got a phone we can use? If we're staying, we might as well call back to base and let them know."
The rest was history.
end part 5.
End Haunted Theater.