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|"A Ghost of a Chance"|
Data Log 1
September 6, 2017
Entry 16: A Ghost of a Chance
February 19 1405 hours
It was another day in the city of Arkville. Most of Alpha 1 was standing outside, as if waiting for someone.
"When are they going to get here?" Jennifer asked.
"Relax, Jennifer," Tom said. "I gave them specific instructions on how to get here. They'll be here soon."
As if on cue, a portal, not Tom's for once, opened in front of them and from it stepped forth Aang, Momo, Sokka, Katara, and Ty Lee.
"Hey, guys. You made it," Tom said.
"Sorry it took a while," Aang said. "We were still trying to figure out the buttons on this thing." He held up the small portal device that Tom gave him a while back.
"Don't sweat it, man," Tom said. "Not everybody gets it right away."
"Hey, where's Will?" Katara asked.
"He said he was going to meet us here five minutes ago," Bill told her. "If I know Will, and I do, he's probably busy reviewing quantum theories for the umpteenth time."
"Quantum what?" Katara said.
"HEY! HEY!!" a voice yelled.
Everyone looked as it came from the Grippers' house. A black cat was seen running from the backyard carrying something in its mouth. Two seconds later, Will was chasing after it, an angry look on his face.
(Will's sounds: tires screech, engine revs)
"Get back here, you little...!" he yelled after the cat.
Everyone stood by as the cat ran past them, quickly followed by Will.
(Will's sound: car zooming by)
"What's that about?" Bill said.
"Shouldn't you know?" Sokka taunted.
Bill got on his cell phone and called Will.
"Uh, Will?" he called. "What's going on, bro?"
"'What's going on?' Some stupid cat broke into my room and stole my Razzolium Nucleotron," Will said.
"Will, it's just one science tool," Bill said. "You can just get another one."
Will was still chasing after the cat. "No way!" he spoke into the phone. "That Nucleotron was made from really rare materials not found on Earth. You can't exactly find it at the nearest supermarket."
The cat ran under a car and out the other side. Will jumped over it and continued running.
(Will's sound: boing!)
"And it was given to me personally by the chief executor of that science conference on Besheeb. It has sentimental value; I must get it back!" .
"All right, all right, we'll help you," Bill said. "Where are you now?"
"I'm chasing the cat down Leslie Drive and coming up on the intersection of D Avenue."
"All right, we'll meet you there," Bill said and hung up.
Tom opened a portal to the intersection.
"Let's go," he said.
Will chased the cat. Inch by inch, he got closer to catching the cat and retrieving what it stole. He used his elastic power to stretch his arms to grab the cat.
"Almost got him," Will said.
Arms were inches closer; he could almost feel its fur. Then he looked up and he gasped, his eyes bugging out. He hopped on his heels and slid to a complete stop.
(Will's sound: screeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeech!)
He stopped at the foot of a large shadow. Behind him, Tom's portal opened and the gang stepped through to join Will.
"Hey, Will, did you get your Nucleotron back?" Bill asked. Will didn't respond. He just stared straight ahead and up.
"What are you staring at?" Bill asked. Then he looked to the direction Will was looking and wished he hadn't. "Whoa."
Soon, the others looked as well. The large shadow belonged to a large old, abandoned manor house, complete with an ominous overcast.
"The old Grayson Manor," Tom said. "Nobody's lived in there for nearly 200 years."
"200 years?" Katara said.
"Yeah, and with good reason," Bill said. "That building has a dark past."
"What do you mean?" Aang asked.
"I remember reading the archives about this for school," Jennifer said. "It all started in the year 1892, five years after this place was built. These people that lived there, the Graysons, were once a happy family living in luxury. But all that ended one night when someone broke into their home and murdered the entire family."
Aang and his friends were horrified by what they were hearing. Sokka was worse off, as he quietly whimpered from the tale, even Momo, who was hiding behind Aang's shoulder.
"M-Murdered?" Sokka said shakily. "Why?"
"The killer wanted their fortune, but his greed eventually got him captured."
"And the murder's not even the worst part," Bill said. "The worst part is that the house is haunted."
"Haunted?" Ty Lee asked.
"Over the years since that night, as people have told about their visits to the house, the Grayson family's spirits still roam the halls," Jennifer said.
"Hey!" Tom said. "I'm the team's history buff. But yeah, that's what happened."
"Oh, please!" Will said. "The ghosts and haunting? That's what they all say!"
"What are you saying?" Aang asked him.
"I'm saying there's no such thing! For Pete's sake, it's just a crummy, broken-down empty house."
"Oh? How do you explain the ghosts?" Bill asked.
"That's just a trick of the light in the house," Will said. "People start seeing things that aren't really there."
"Well, how do you explain the strange noises..." Jennifer said. Then added with a spooky voice, "...and the ghostly wails?"
"The noises are because the house is old and it's settling," Will explained. "And the wails are the wind that blows through the house because it's drafty. Terribly drafty."
"Hey, look!" Tom said, pointing to the house.
Will looked to see the cat with his Nucleotron. It went up the porch and into the opening in the front door.
"Oh, nuts," Will said. "It'll take forever to find that cat in there." After a moment of thinking, Will walked toward the house.
"Whoa, where are you going?" Bill said.
"To get my Nucleotron back," Will told him.
"But Will, you heard what Bill and Jennifer said," Sokka said. "The ghosts are-"
"Ah, ghosts, schmosts!" Will told. "And come on, Sokka, man up! I thought you were a 'fearless warrior'."
Sokka's face turned angry. "That's it! Step aside! Let me in there!"
"Hold it!" Tom said after portaling. "I may not be into paranormal activity, but it can't hurt to be precautious." He tossed everyone their armor. "And if the building's as old as people say..."
"In case a misstep causes the house to collapse," Will got the idea. Then he looked toward the house.
Will opened the front door to the inside. The interior of the house looked old and broken-down. Dust and cobwebs covered everything from the furniture to the mantel.
"Ugh," Will said. "This place looks even worse on the inside."
Will took a step forward on a floorboard which let out a loud creak. Every step he took was a loud creak.
"Lousy floorboards," Will muttered.
Everyone followed him in and they were inside the house's dark interior.
Tom portaled up a flashlight and shone it around the living room. Then he caught sight of the fireplace, where, above the mantel, hung a family portrait.
"Looks like the Grayson family," Tom said.
"And you can bet their ghosts are roaming around here," Jennifer said.
Will scoffed at her remark. "Please."
"Okay, looks like it's easy to get lost in here," Tom said, "and run into a ghost, if there are any, so everyone stay close."
Just as he said it, an infatuated/nervous Ty Lee zipped over to Tom and grabbed on to his arm for safety.
"Ty Lee, I don't mean that close," Tom said.
Jennifer saw the whole thing and with a grin shook her head slowly at Tom's cluelessness.
Everyone continued into the house and passed the fireplace. And unknown to them, in the portrait all of the eyes slowly moved to watch them go by. Will was looking around the house and underneath furniture. "Nucleotron, where are you?" He pulled out the couch cushions and looked into the upholstery. "That dumb cat," he muttered, "going around stealing people's property. I've never heard of such of thing!" He looked between a chair and a china cabinet. Unknowing to him, on top of the cabinet, a small teapot was moving, as if by an invisible hand. It slid to the very edge of the cabinet, directly over Will. Then it tipped over and fell on Will's head with a shattering sound.
"Ow!" Will said, hand on his head. "What the...?"
He looked down and saw pieces of the teapot lying at his feet. Annoyingly, he turned to his companions. "Okay," he said, "which one of you did that?"
"Did what?" Bill asked.
"Don't be coy," Will said. "Which one of you dropped a teapot on my head?"
"I saw that teapot," Sokka said. "It moved by itself. It's like Bill and Jennifer said. There's a ghost in here."
"Ridiculous," Will said. "I told you. Ghosts don't exist." He sighed. "Come on, we got to search the rest of the house."
Everybody followed Will. Unknowingly, as they left the room, a pale, ghostly form materialized out of thin air. With a laugh, the ghost followed the gang.
The group continued to walk down the hallway, all the while Will was scanning his eyes around, looking for his missing Nucleotron. Will passed what looked to be a child's bedroom. As the others passed it, nothing unusual happened; Bill looked inside the room and walked on. Suddenly, he came back to the doorway and thought he heard a creaking sound. What he saw he couldn't believe: a rocking horse in the room started rocking by itself.
"Hey, guys," he called to the others, "look at this."
"Is it my Nucleotron?" Will asked.
"Well, no, but-"
"Then it's nothing." Will continued on.
Bill looked back at the rocking chair, which stopped rocking. He rubbed his eyes to make sure he wasn't seeing things. Then he simply shrugged, figuring it was nothing. The creaking noise started again and this time he was sure it was the horse.
"Guys, you better look at this," he said.
All but Will walked over to look. They were shocked by the unnatural sight.
"If Will were seeing this," Bill said, "he would call this an 'unnatural phenomenon'."
They continued to stare at the rocking horse until something else unnatural happened: a ghostly form of a little girl in a dress appeared on the rocking horse. Tom slapped himself in the face in disbelief.
"You guys are seeing this, right?" Bill asked.
"That's really a ghost?" Katara asked.
"Don't you guys have ghosts or haunted houses on Bender Earth?"
"No, only spirits."
The ghost girl slowly turned her head and looked in their direction, startling them. She floated off her horse toward them. She was close enough, literally face to face, with the group, who were too paralyzed to move. For a moment, she was silent. Then she gave a warm smile and said with a ghostly, echo-y voice, "Will you play with me?"
The group took a step backwards. But Momo, with a sense of curiosity, got down to the floor to get a closer look at the ghost. The girl got up in Momo's face in a split second and said, "Will you play with me?"
Momo gave a chatter of terror and jumped onto Sokka's face. Caught off-guard, Sokka tumbled backward into the group, causing them all to fall to the floor.
"Momo, let go of my face!" he tried to pull Momo off, but with no success.
"Hey," Bill said, pointing to the bedroom. The little ghost girl had disappeared. "Where'd she go? And does anyone else feel a draft?"
They did. And the wind behind it was getting stronger. It was so strong it actually blew them down the hall, screaming.
Meanwhile, Will was still searching for his Nucleotron. He looked under a small wooden chair and then lifted a chest to look underneath it.
"Razzolium Nucleotron, where art thou?" Will said.
Then he heard the rest of his group's screaming from down the hall.
"Now what?" he said, exasperated.
"Come on!" Tom voice was heard. Will walked down the hall to where the voice came and as he was about to round the corner, the gang ran right into him.
(Will's sound: punch)
They continued running until they crashed into the room at the far end of the hall.
(Will's sound: bowling ball hitting pins)
Everyone was in a pile, Will on the bottom. He stretched his way out, looking very peeved.
"Guys, what is it this time?" he said. "Oh, wait. Let me guess. It was your ghost."
"Well, with the teapot incident, this time it wasn't the same ghost," Bill said.
"Yeah, this time, it was a little girl," Ty Lee said.
"She was on the little rocking horse, but we didn't actually see her that time," Jennifer said, "but she suddenly appeared after that."
"Oh, come on," Will said. "It was a dark room. You guys were seeing things."
"Will, easy," Tom said. "Don't bust a blood vessel. We did see a ghost, even your brother saw. If you saw one for yourself..."
"No, Tom. No. That ghost nonsense may work on most people, but people like me, we're all about the logical. And such supernatural phenomena is not logical." Sighing, he said, "I'm going to check upstairs."
"Oh, Will," Bill said disapprovingly. "If only you could realize it."
After Will left, everyone else suddenly felt a chill in the air.
"Is it my imagination, or did it just get cold in here?" Sokka said.
Then they heard the distant sound of a woman humming, and it was getting closer.
"This is getting really weird," Tom said. "Something tells me we should take action before..." He gasped loudly. Everyone looked where he was looking and saw the ghostly form of the humming woman floating across the hall. As she passed them, she simply waved to them and moved on.
"Okay, this is getting ridiculous," Jennifer said, annoyed. "Every time Will leaves, these ghosts appear. And you know, these haunts aren't like the usual ones I've seen on T. V."
"How do you mean?" Bill asked.
"Well, from what I've watched, the spirits of those who died horribly in a certain building will actually force out any and all intruders. But these spirits were a kind family, whose lives were taken because of someone's greed."
"What's your point?" Sokka asked.
"The reason for the haunting is because the spirits are trapped in the house and can't cross over," Jennifer.
"So the spirits will need some coaxing to cross over to the other side," Bill said. "And we'll need the professionals for it."
Bill noticed Jennifer looking at him with surprise. Then he simply said, "You're not the only one who watches the Spiritual Network."
"Okay, so who do we call about this?" Tom said. "'Cause I doubt it's those four guys with all the ghost-fighting gadgets."
"No, but I know someone who's a friend of my parents'," Jennifer said. She pulled out her cell phone and dialed.
"Uh, Jennifer, are you sure about this?" Tom asked.
"Of course," she said. "He's very reliable. And he's a professional paranormal investigator."
Once she finished dialing, she waited for an answer.
Minutes later, everyone but Will was waiting outside. Then a red van rolled up to the house's gate and a man stepped out of the driver's side. And other people accompanying him followed him to the house.
"Jennifer!" the man called gleefully.
"Hi, Sam!" she called back.
"'Sam'?" Bill said.
"My mom knew him from when they were kids. And those people with him, they're part of his team of paranormal investigators."
"Paranormal investigators?" Katara said.
"Yeah. They look into hauntings. The names of the ghosts, how they died, and how to get rid of them," Jennifer explained.
"Hey, Jennifer, how you been?" Sam asked her.
"I'm doing great," Jennifer said. "Well, except for seeing the ghosts."
Sam put a hand on Jennifer's shoulder. "I know the feeling," he said. "Oh, see you have your friends with you. Oh, kids, these are my associates." He gestured to his team. "Arnold, he detects the noises with his sound equipment. Sarah is in charge of the thermal and night vision cameras. And Hugo here is in charge of the EMF meter and essentials."
"Essentials?" Sokka said.
Hugo held up a bag of salt. "Salt," he said in a German accent. "Good for ghost-repelling. Ja."
Jennifer smile and then felt a strange in her head. Then it got worse as she cradled her head.
"Jennifer, what's wrong?" Sam asked.
"Something weird," she said. "It feels like the ghosts are calling out to me."
"Has this ever happened before?" Tom asked.
"You mean even you don't know?" Sam asked him.
"No, it's never happened before," Jennifer said. "Given the fact that I have psychic powers."
"Can you describe what they want?" Sam asked.
"I...I don't know," she said. "They're too far away." She walked back to the house, with everyone following.
Jennifer walked down the hall, trying to find the source of the call. Hugo waved his EMF meter around to detect any ghostly energy. Arnold pointed his audio detection device for ghostly voices inaudible to the unaided ear.
"Hugo, Arnold. Picking up anything?" Sam asked.
"I'm not picking up anything," Hugo said.
"All quiet. I'll keep checking," Arnold added.
"Sarah, you see anything?" Sam asked her.
"Nothing yet," she said.
Sam continued to scan the hall with his camera. As Jennifer continued forward, the strange feeling in her head quickly turned into a headache. She was close to falling over before Katara caught her. A few feet further, Jennifer stopped in midstride. She pointed to the end of the hall into the house's living room. They followed her as she ran. She turned and pointed up the stairs.
"There," she said.
Everyone looked to see Will still searching for his Nucleotron. Hugo pointed his EMF at Will and it beeped wildly. Sarah and Sam pointed their cameras to Will. What they saw sent a chill down their spines. Through the lens of their cameras, they saw a group of ghosts following Will as he searched. Will noticed the gang looking at him.
"What?" he said. "What are you guys looking at?" He pointed to Sam and his team. "And who are those guys?"
"Sonny," Sam addressed Will. "Don't look now, but there's a gaggle of ghosts right behind you."
Even more annoyed, Will looked at his team.
(Will's sound: big dog growling)
"Geez, who did you guys reel into this nonsense this time?" he asked.
"Bro," Bill said, "these guys are professionals in this matter. They can--"
Will interrupted him, not wanting to hear any more of it. "Deh-deh-deh-deh! I don't want to hear it."
Bill said to Sam, gesturing toward Will. "My brother, Will. He's more of a solid facts kind of guy and thinks this paranormal stuff is...bunk."
"Well, we might as well ease his frustration," Sam said. "And prove to him this activity is real."
Will was already down the stairs and rejoining the group.
"So, who did you guys get involved this time?" Will asked.
"Uh, Will, this is Sam and his team of, uh..." Jennifer hesitated. "Ghost hunters."
"'Ghost hunters'?" Will said with disbelief and slapped himself in the face. "I don't believe this."
"Now, Will," Sam said, "You may not believe in the supernatural, but there is evidence to such matters, and what is believed to be fiction has certain facts." He pulled out his camera. "Have a look and you'll see."
"Come on, Will," Tom said. "Just look. At least humor him."
With a sigh, Will said, "Fine."
Will looked at Sam's camera to see footage from a few minutes earlier. He sees himself upstairs looking for his Razzolium Nucleotron.
"Mind telling me what you're trying to show me?" Will said.
"Wait for it," Sam said.
The next few frames showed the family of ghosts following Will around. The ghost man looked in the camera's direction and waved "hello."
"Hey..." Will said. "I didn't notice them behind me."
"Duh," Bill said. "That's because they're ghosts."
"No!" Will said. "They're a bunch of people equipped with active camouflage devices that may have been stolen from our labs and sold to them. The reason they could only be seen on camera is because it's got thermal vision, and their body temperatures were detected."
Suddenly, he was lifted into the air by an invisible force. Everyone else was shocked by what was happening.
"What the...?" Will said.
"What's going on?" Tom asked.
Sarah looked through her camera to see the ghosts lifting Will into the air.
"It's the ghosts!" Sarah said.
Hugo said, "Schnell! We must form a ring around us with the salt!" He pulled out his bag of salt.
"Oh, knock it off!" Will said. "I'm being lifted by wires! It's all wires these days."
He was really being stretched now. Unseen, the ghosts began to have fun with Will by pulling his elastic arms and legs apart.
(Will's sound: stretching sound effects)
"Industrial-strength wires!" Will said.
Back and forth, his limbs were stretched. Up and down, left and right. They slammed him at the top of the stairs as Will's body became cylindrical. Then he fell forward end over end down the stairs like a large Slinky. At the bottom of the stairs, he popped back into form and fell flat.
"Someone's having fun with this," Will said. "And it's not me!"
Suddenly, the scene got hectic. Furniture began to lift off the floor and fly around. Ghostly laughter filled the house. Everyone took cover from the flying furniture, one narrowly missing Tom's head.
"Now do believe there are ghosts, Will?" he asked him.
"Wires, magnets and prerecorded voices," the skeptic Will said.
There was a sudden gust of cold wind blowing indoors. The wind was so strong it lifted Sokka up into the air. Arnold managed to grab him before he got too far away.
"I gotcha, I gotcha," Arnold said.
Will hung on to the rug in the middle of the floor.
"Unless Aang's involved," Will said, "high-powered industrial fans!" He lost his grip and swirled around on the wind. A few more loops around and he was sent flying, smashing through the front door to the outside. Then as suddenly as it began, the calamity stopped; everything dropping to the floor. The group stood stunned for a moment, and then Bill realized Will might be hurt.
"Will!" he said running out the door. Everyone followed him to see Will on the ground, unconscious. (Will's sound: tweeting sound)
Bill picked up his brother to revive him. "Will! WILL!! Wake up!" he said, shaking him.
(Will's sound: cowbell ringing, tweeting sound)
"Knock, knock! Anybody home?" Bill knocked on his head.
(Will's sound: hollow knocking)
Will looked at Bill with dazed eyes, and then he passed out gain.
"Yeah, he's out," Bill said to the group. He dropped Will.
(Will's sound: slide whistle down, pow!)
"What do we do now?" Sokka asked. "Those ghosts are crazy."
"Hey, guys," Tom asked the paranormal investigators. "Do you know a way to get rid of the ghosts?"
Hugo held up his salt in anticipation.
"That doesn't involve salt?" Tom finished.
Disappointed, Hugo put away his salt.
"Well," Sam said, "first thing we got to do is talk to the ghosts, figure out why they're stuck in that house."
"Hey, Jennifer," Tom said. "Since the ghosts called out to you, do you think you can talk to them?"
"I don't know," she said. "I've never talked to dead people before."
"Can you try? That way, when they're gone, we could put an end to this haunting. And Will can finally move past this skepticism."
After a moment, Jennifer decided, "I'll try."
"Okay, Sokka," Tom said, "you stay with Will until he comes to."
The group returned to the house, Jennifer in the lead. She kept her eyes and ears sharp for the ghosts when she felt a chill in the air. She held up a hand as a signal to halt. She slowly turned her head to look around living area. Then she pointed a finger toward the chairs in front of the fireplace. She took a step forward.
"Hello?" she said.
The family of ghosts slowly materialized before everyone's eyes. The man and woman were in their chairs while the children were playing with their toys by the fireplace. They looked her way and floated off the furniture and floor to her. They floated down and settled before Jennifer. Behind her, everyone was prepared to take action should the ghosts intend to harm her. But they didn't as the ghost man gave a cheerful smile and shook Jennifer's hand.
"Well, hello!" he said in a voice that echoed. "Welcome to our home. I am Stanford Grayson, and this is my wife, Lily."
One of the ghost children tugged Stanford's coat. He looked down at them and laughed gleefully, "And these are our children, Eleanor and Benjamin. Children, say 'hello'."
"Hello," Benjamin said. Eleanor giggled and hid behind her mother.
The ghost woman, Lily, took Jennifer's hand into her hands. "Good evening, young lady," Lily said. "And what might your name be?"
"Uh, Jennifer," she said. "Jennifer Walker."
"Oh, what a lovely name," Lily said. "And what brings you and your friends here, Jennifer?"
"Well, what I'm about to say is, and I hesitate to say, what happened to you and your family?" Jennifer said.
Lily's face suddenly turned to sadness. "My husband and I remember it all too well. That night when we lost everything, including our lives. That strange man wanted our money, and when we couldn't give it to him, he lashed out at us. And then he went for our children."
"That...that sounds awful," Jennifer said.
"'Diabolical' is more like it," Bill said. "But, hey, the guy was caught in the end."
Stanford went to comfort his wife. "Yes, but for nearly two hundred years we've been trapped in this house. We have no way of leaving."
"Wait," Jennifer said, "I think there is. I saw this on the Spiritual Network. Oh, and Hugo?"
Hugo looked at her.
"We'll need your bag of salt," she finished.
Hugo smiled and looked at the salt.
Hugo finished pouring the salt into a ring around the ghosts. Sam reached into his bag and pulled out four candles and Aang used his firebending to light them. All four were placed around the salt ring and Jennifer pulled down one of the curtains on the windows at the front door.
"Well, since I don't have an actual hood and cloak, this curtain will have to do," Jennifer said.
As the others prepared for the next step, Jennifer wrapped the curtain around her.
"Okay, is everyone ready?" Jennifer asked.
"We're set," Tom said.
"Are you sure this will work?" Stanford asked Jennifer.
"Uhh...not entirely," Jennifer said. "I missed that part of the show. But I do have an idea."
Uncertain, Tom couldn't help but say, "Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight. You all set then?"
Jennifer pulled a part of the curtain over her head as a hood. In a European accent, she said, "I am ready."
She walked over to the salt ring for her afterlife ritual. "Let the afterlife ritual begin," she said.
The assembled people formed a ring around the salt ring, each holding a lit candle. The ghosts stood in the center of the ring, both nervous and excited. Jennifer carried a bowl of water and set it down at the very edge of the salt ring.
"Let it be known," she began. "Lord of the sky, we ask that you end this haunting and expel the spirits from this plane. Take them into your heart and grant them your eternal blessing."
Jennifer put her hands into the bowl and cupped the water. Then she poured the water out of her hands and onto the salt ring and began the ritual's chant. As she chanted, the water spread all over the salt ring and the ring itself started to glow. And then the flames of the candles, both on the floor and in everyone's hands, turned from yellow to blue. And as she continued to chant, their blue flames grew bigger and brighter. Soon, the flames shot down to the salt ring and as the blue flames formed into a ring, it slowly rose above the ghosts' heads. As Jennifer reached the end of her chant, rays of light shot up from the ring and through the ceiling. The rushing wind extinguished the candles. Then Jennifer finished her chant. She looked around, confused by the sight. The room was silent and it appears that nothing happened. Everyone else looked around, too. Still, nothing happened.
"Uh, Jen," Tom said, "is something supposed to happen?"
"I told you," Jennifer said, "I haven't seen the end of that episode."
Suddenly, a light shone down from the ceiling, the ghost family basking in its glow.
It was the gateway to the other side.
The ghosts began to float upward toward the light.
"Mommy, where are we going?" Eleanor asked Lily.
"We're going to a better place, dear," Lily said.
"Goodbye, everyone," Stanford said to the assembled.
Bill was caught up in the moment until he remembered. "Wait! Have you seen my brother's Razzolium Nucleotron?"
Stanford pondered for a second. "Would it happen to look like a bracelet that glows red and purple?"
Stanford reached into his coat pocket and pulled out the bracelet.
"Yeah, that's it," Bill said.
Stanford tossed the Razzolium Nucleotron to Bill. The ghosts waved a final goodbye.
"Farewell, my friends," Stanford said. "And thank you."
For one second, the family's ghostly forms turned solid, as if they were never ghosts. And then, they disappeared into the light. And soon, the light itself faded out of sight.
"Well, Jennifer," Bill said, "looks like the ritual worked in that episode."
Tom looked at Aang and his gang. "So, what did you think of your first encounter with ghosts?"
"Well, one thing's for sure," Katara said. "Will won't believe this."
Will was beginning to regain consciousness. He slowly opened his eyes to see his companions standing over him. He lifted himself up and rubbed his head. Then he shook his head to clear it.
(Will's sound: cow bell ringing)
"Oh, my head," Will said. "What happened, guys?"
"Well, Will," Bill began, and then he stopped. He hesitated on talking about what he just witnessed. Then he just told him, "It was...uneventful. Oh, and we found your Nucleotron."
"Oh, great," Will said. Sarcastically, he added, "So, did you guys find your ghosts?"
As Will waited for an answer, the others looked at each other.
"Uh, well..." Aang began until Bill covered his mouth.
"No, Will," Will's brother said. "There were no ghosts. You were right; they don't exist."
"I was?" Will said. "I mean, of course I was. And I hope all of you learned a valuable lesson. Hauntings are a hoax." He turned and walked off. "I mean, it's one thing that you guys just hear stories about paranormal nonsense, but thinking that you actually encountered..."
As Will continued his ranting, everyone else looked on.
"Why didn't you tell him about the ghosts?" Aang asked Bill.
"Guys, you know Will," Bill said. "He'll never believe this stuff. And I'd rather not hear any more of Will's 'arguing the illogical'. Besides, it's been a long day."
Meanwhile, Jennifer was talking to Sam and his team.
"You sure you have to go?" she asked.
"Yeah, Jennifer," Sam said. "Now that the ghosts are gone, we should move on. Who knows what other ghosts could be out there. Say, when were you magical?"
"Well, I'm not exactly sure," Jennifer said. "I guess it's always been part of my psychic powers."
"Well, kid, let me tell you, you have a great talent, a talent I didn't even know about. I gotta say, Jennifer. You're a special kid. Keep up the good work."
"See, guys?" Hugo said to his team. "I told you the salt would come in handy."
"Not now, Hugo," Sarah sighed.
Sam and his crew left. Jennifer thought about what Sam said and it inspired her.
"Hey, Jennifer!" Tom called. "Come on!"
Smiling, Jennifer ran to join her companions as they walked home; all the while listening to Will's continuous ranting.
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