The Lady in Red

By JECrazy.

Doctor Egon Spengler was nervous. More nervous than he'd ever been in his entire life. He took in a deep breath and adjusted his tie. You can do this he told himself as he stared at his reflection in the mirror. He was stylishly dressed in grey cotton pants and a matching jacket. The grey incidentally brought out his gorgeous blue eyes. His shirt was white and his tie was light pink. His shoes were a grey colour that matched the jacket and pants. As usual he wore his customary red-rimmed, round spectacles. Egon splashed some after-shave Venkman had loaned him on his clean shaven face. He gritted his teeth as it stung a bit. Oh boy he groaned inwardly as he thought the scent was a little strong. But he figured since Peter was the expert in the romance department it would be acceptable. He just wanted tonight to be perfect.

Egon was going out on his first real date with Janine Melnitz, the flame haired secretary who'd stolen his heart. She was vivacious, plucky, energetic and voluptuous and was the one thing that could make him forget about science and logic, whenever she called his name in her high Brooklyn accent, threw her arms around him with relief that he was safe after the latest, perilous mission or merely walked into the lab. She was like a breath of fresh air in his stuffy, rational, ordered little world.

He still couldn't believe he'd been so stupid and foolish for so many years. Pretending not to notice her advances or trying to act as if he didn't like it, which of course he did.

However there was one time when Janine was dating a creepy businessman by the name of Paul Smart and Egon had shown terrible jealousy, which Janine had been confused about and even resented. She was so annoyed that, after about three years of chasing Egon, to no avail, she'd decide enough was enough, time to move on and so she started dating another man, but because she wasn't hanging off Egon's arm anymore he'd gotten possessive. She felt that it wasn't fair and that he couldn't have it both ways. Having her giving him all her affection and not getting any in return, but not being allowed to get together with anyone else either. So she virtually ignored him for three weeks while waiting for Paul to call her after their last date. Then they'd all discovered that Smart had just been using Janine to steal the secrets of the Ghostbusters' technology. Egon had felt a great deal of satisfaction when he'd watched Janine angrily grab a nearby jug of water and tip it's contents over Smart's head, thoroughly drenching him in the process. But after all the tension between Janine and himself, Egon had decided that the best course of action was to go on making as if he was uninterested.

BIG MISTAKE... one New Year's Eve Janine had, out of frustration and loneliness, thrown herself at Louis Tully of all people and spent the night with him. When Egon had found out the green-eyed monster resurfaced once more and they again had argued, but ended up calling a truce of sorts. However the tension that remained in their already rocky relationship had threatened to drive them apart.

He didn't know what to do because as illogical as it seemed to him... Egon Spengler loved Janine Melnitz more than he ever thought possible. She challenged him and provoked him in a way that no one... not even Peter Venkman ever had and he wanted to be with her. He just didn't know how to go about telling her how he felt... and he was scared that she no longer cared for him after everything that had transpired between them.

Then just three weeks ago Egon and the other Ghostbusters had discovered that an evil, malevolent entity known as a Makoveris Lotsabucks had been changing Janine over the years. All done in an effort to get him to notice her, which had made him feel guilty. But the creature had the power to cover up these changes so no one would notice, so it wasn't entirely his fault. It was when they saw Janine's scrapbook and found the pictures of all the different looks Janine had gone through that gave it all away.

The Ghostbusters had made a mad dash to find Janine that night before the Lotsabucks changed Janine one final time, horrifyingly, into one of it's own kind. When on a hunch Egon alone had found Janine that's what was almost on the brink of happening. She had some terrifying powers and she was ticked with him, big time, she wasn't even listening to his pleas. He supposed he couldn't blame her after what he'd put her through. But Egon had realised ironically thanks to the tauntings of the Lotsabucks that the only way he could break the hold the Lotsabucks had over Janine was to admit to her at long last how he felt and that he was willing to die to prove it, even removing his proton pack and lowering it to the ground without taking his piercing blue eyes off of Janine. He was truly relieved when she'd said, "I love you, Egon," and turned her back on and even fought the creature that had been urging her to destroy him... especially given how close he'd come to losing her permanently and it was in that moment that all the recent bad feelings that had passed between them just melted away.

After the other Ghostbusters arrived just in time to catch it before it blasted Janine and Egon into oblivion, Janine and Egon had sat on a bench watching the sun rising over the water. Overcome by her beauty and the magic of the moment when it was just the two of them alone, with his arm around her keeping her warm, he had actually asked her if she wanted to go see a movie sometime and with rosy cheeks she'd accepted. Even though they'd gone out together before, it had always been very casual (at least he thought so). He swore to himself that this time it would be different. He even decided that he was going to let down at least some of emotional defences and show how her how he felt. He felt that simply telling her he loved her wasn't good enough that he had to make her feel his love for her.

Afterwards Egon had walked Janine back to her apartment where the others were waiting with Ecto-1. He'd made sure she was safe and despite her protests gave her a week off to recover from the ordeal that she'd just been through. The others didn't argue with his decision although they were slightly smirking as he'd gotten into Ecto-1 and told them about it.

Egon began to notice soon after Janine had comeback that she'd started to regain her strength, her undeniable spunk back. Something else that the Makoveris Lotsabucks did was to slowly suck the life, the very soul right out of you everytime it changed you... until you were too weak to fight back. So when Egon had rescued Janine from it's malicious grasp she was just a shadow of her former scrappy self. Now she was almost back to full strength, even her thick Brooklyn accent was making it's presence known throughout the Firehouse again. Egon had to admit to himself that he didn't mind because he knew that it was part of her charm. She was yelling at Slimer for eating her doughnuts, barking out orders as if she was in charge and generally giving Venkman a hard time, something that made Egon smile as he'd frequently been teased by Peter himself over the years.

So yesterday Egon had finally plucked up the courage to ask Janine out. He breathed a sigh of relief when with sparkling eyes and a beautiful smile on her face had said, "Yes, of course I'll go out with you, Egon."

"Excellent" he had said in return. "Right... well then... I'll pick you up at your place tomorrow night at seven."

There... that wasn't so hard he'd told himself.

Doctor Peter Venkman had been coming down the stairs and had apparently heard the brief exchange and had gone over to Egon as he walked away from Janine's desk. Peter had slapped Egon on the back, knocking the wind out of him in the process. "Way to go Spengs!" he'd congratulated. With a typical Venkman smirk Peter then had gone on to ask, "So where are you taking your Lady Love?"

"Well, I thought we'd go and see a movie..."

"Great! Watcha gonna see?" Venkman had prodded.

"Umm... "The Life of a Bug" and then if we have time "Molecules and You"."

Peter had rolled his eyes at this. "Jeez Egon... What are you trying to do? Chase her away again? Bore her to death?"

Egon had shook his head, "Of course not. I just thought that-"

But Peter, putting his training in psychology to use, had interrupted him at that point. "That's your trouble Spengs. You think too much. You gotta start thinking or better yet feeling with your heart..." Venkman had trailed off as an idea started to form in his evil little mind. He'd taken something out of his breast pocket while smirking and rather cheekily said, "You gotta wine and dine Janine. She deserves that much right?"

Egon had nodded. "I suppose..."

"No supposing about it, Egon. Call this place and make a reservation..." Peter had said while slyly slipping Egon a business card. "Just give them my name, you'll get a discount." Peter had winked then.

Egon had rolled his eyes as he realised it was probably a place Peter had taken many dates to. He'd read the card before enquiring, "An Italian restaurant?"

"Sure, Egon. It's perfect!" Peter had laid a reassuring hand on his old friend's shoulder. "Don't worry, it'll be fine... trust me."

Egon had frowned and commented to Venkman, "The words trust and me when put together around here usually add up to one thing... trouble."

Peter had feigned hurt, "Oh gee thanks, Spengs. Glad to know you have faith in me and my abilities to make sure your big night will go smoothly."

"Sorry Peter." Egon had just stared at the floor. "I'm just nervous... that's all... I want Janine to see that I'm trying to overcome my fears of getting closer to her."

"You've asked her out on a serious date. That's a start," Peter had said while smiling one of his rarest, warmest, most genuine and sincere smiles.

Egon had softly sighed, run a hand through his blond hair and looked back up.

"And remember if anything of a supernatural nature arises, short of the world ending, Tex, Zee and Me'll take care of it. But if anything rises for you, you and Janine'll have to deal with it yourselves." Venkman had emphasised the word rises in a suggestive way which had made Egon Spengler who was known for his infamous shyness to blush uncontrollably.

Peter Venkman had smirked with satisfaction at that and then he'd left Egon to his thoughts and had gone into his office, pausing briefly to tell Janine to get dressed up to the nines for her date with her man. This had caused Janine to look over at Egon with a questioning look and a half smile.

Egon had buried his face in his hand at that. Clearly annoyed at Peter for that last remark and embarrassed that Janine had seen him blushing again. He'd then retreated upstairs to find something to do in the lab... anything... as long as it helped calm his nerves as it so often did...

So here he was standing infront of that mirror looking himself over once more, "I hope she likes it." He whispered to himself as he grabbed his keys and wallet and shoving them into his back pocket went downstairs.

Slimer, the Firehouse's resident ghost was in the kitchen, busily raiding the fridge on the second floor, looking for last night's leftover pizza. No real surprises there.

Peter was sitting in Janine's desk chair, feet up on the desk. Something that he knew infuriated her, so he did it as often as possible. He was watching Doctor Raymond Stantz and Winston Zeddemore working on Ecto-1. They loved doing this, it was one of their favourite pastimes. All three of them were wearing their casual clothes.

When Egon came down the stairs they all looked up and gave an ,"Ohhh... aggh," of approval in unison.

Egon raised an eyebrow. "Jealous?" He asked jokingly.

"Well, yeah..." Venkman retorted. "You're the only one going on a date tonight."

"Yeah," Winston agreed.

"For a change," Ray couldn't resist adding.

The three antagonisers sniggered.

They knew it was true for even Ray and Winston had gone on occasional dates with some very lovely ladies.

"Ha. Ha," Egon snorted and started heading for the door.

"No flowers?" Peter asked feigning seriousness.

"After last time, no," Egon replied simply. The others giggled knowing that he was referring to the time he'd unwittingly given Janine a haunted geranium that grew so huge it took over Brooklyn and Janine's apartment had gotten wrecked in the process and had made her mad. Something they tried not to do whenever possible was make Janine mad due to her notorious temper, except perhaps when Venkman was in a stirring up Janine mood.

Peter looked at his watch. "It's getting late, Egon, you'd better get going. Wouldn't want to keep the red-headed tornado from Brooklyn waiting, would you? Of course if I know her, seeing as how she's had the day off to get ready, she's probably been waiting all afternoon."

This caused Egon's Ghostbusting cohorts to guffaw outloud.

"Oh... shut up," Egon groaned sarcastically.

"Now Egon. Remember what I said..."Peter continued, undaunted. "Don't behave, 'cause Janine doesn't want you to." The laughter escalated.

Egon shot him a dagger eye as he opened the door of the Firehouse and departed.

Their laughter died down and then Ray of all people remarked, "They are so made for each other..."

This comment made them at first start to snicker and then erupt into laughter again.

Egon could still hear their childish laughing even from outside. Even though they drive me crazy I'm truly grateful for their friendship. Their teasing of me is simply their way of showing they care. They also know that razzing me keeps me on my toes and helps me relax a little... especially when it comes to a certain scarlet haired secretary we all know... and love... All this went through his mind as he hailed a cab.
When the cab pulled up outside Janine's apartment building, Egon asked the driver to stay, as he wouldn't be long.

He got out of the taxi and looked up at Janine's window. It was a window he knew well. There were several nights over the years that Egon had had trouble sleeping and so he'd gone for late night walks in an effort to tire himself out. More often than he'd dare admit he'd found himself standing below it, looking up at it, wondering if he should or even could go into the building to see, talk to and be with the person who resided in the apartment that the window belonged to. He'd even considered the possibility of telling her how he felt and what may have happened if she'd asked him to stay...

He sighed... No regrets, Egon... time to focus on the here and now... and then entered the building. He made his way to Janine's door. He wondered how she'd look and what she'd think about his appearance.

Well... here goes... He held his breath and knocked on the door. Let out the breath again.

Even though Egon knew it was highly improbable he also knew it wasn't impossible. For when Janine opened the door and stood there with her hand on her hip it seemed to him that time was standing still.

Janine Melnitz was excited. More excited than she'd ever been in her entire life. She took in a deep breath, let it out and adjusted her necklace as she stared at her reflection in the mirror.

She could hardly believe it after years of chasing, waiting and hoping she and Doctor Egon Spengler were going out on a date. Sure they'd gone out before, but this felt different, more real somehow.

When she'd first met the physicist she was instantly smitten. He was very tall, had the cutest blond hair, soulful blue eyes, a deep rich voice and four, count 'em four, PhDs. He'd received a degree when he was in grade school so she thought he was probably the smartest man on Earth. (His butt wasn't bad either). She loved how he was so attractive, but didn't even know it, that made him seem even cuter. The only problem was that he was so absorbed in his work that he didn't seem to be interested in anything else. Certainly not her. He also had the strangest hobbies too. The strangest was being a collector of spores, moulds and fungus, of all things.

But over time Janine had come to appreciate and even love Egon's eccentricities, idiosyncrasies and aloofishness.

However after he'd ignored her flirtations for the umpteenth time she'd begun to lose hope. She'd confided in her sister who had made some stupid offhanded remark about her not being pretty enough for him.

This had played on Janine's mind so much so that it made her easy prey for a creature that had introduced itself as her Fairy Godmother. She thought it was a miracle whenever it had changed her, which she got it to do often over the years. She'd had it change everything from her weight to her height and even her eyes from blue to green all in the hopes that she'd gain Egon's attention.

She'd grown tired of Egon's complacency a couple of times and dated two other men and even seduced one of them on New Year's Eve one year, but none of it had ever seemed right, it kind of felt like she did it against her will. She hated thinking about those relationships as they'd turned out to be complete disasters and had almost led she and Egon to a parting of the ways, the very thought of which terrified her more than anything. Looking back she realised that neither of them could ever even possibly have compared to Egon anyway, despite her frustrations with him.

Then one night the creature calling itself her Fairy Godmother had told Janine the Ghostbusters being led by Egon were coming to get her, to take away her beauty or some other such nonsense. At the time she trusted it so she did as it told her and followed it. It led her to water where it was the strongest. She'd been about to give herself over to it believing it'd make her perfect, when Egon arrived. She didn't know how he'd found them, but she didn't care because she blamed him for everything. Nothing he said mattered anymore, not even when he babbled something about it not mattering what she looked like. She'd been about to destroy him with the power the creature had given her when he did the strangest thing... he took off his proton pack and prepared himself to die, and she could hardly believe it when she'd then heard him utter the three words that did matter, the three words she'd longed to hear coming out of his mouth. "I love you," he had said while looking her straight in the eyes with those amazing, electric blue eyes she'd often gotten lost in over the years. She came to her senses, realising that although she may have been mad at him she still loved him with all her heart and soul and she had then returned his declaration knowing full well that she meant it. She'd then fought the evil monster with it's own power until the other Ghostbusters had showed up and trapped it just in time before it obliterated them both.

Then she and Egon had sat on a bench watching the sun rising, his arm around her, keeping her warm because she was wearing just her nightgown and Ghostbusters' jacket which she'd thrown on over the nightie when she'd hastily left her apartment at the creature's behest. She'd accepted his offer to go see a movie no matter what it was. He'd then walked her back to her apartment; made sure she was safe and gave her a week off to recover. When she protested he'd made it an order, so she did what he'd wanted. She always did have trouble saying no to him.

Of course she couldn't wait to get back to work. She knew the guys would fall apart without her. She wanted to keep Doctor Venkman in line, and she wanted to be with Egon, because she loved him now more than ever.

Then yesterday Egon had asked her to go out with him. What? She was gonna say no?

Doctor V had told Janine to dress up to the nines. So that's exactly what she was doing. She couldn't help wondering where Egon was taking her though. She hoped it wasn't to go and see movies about bugs and/or molecules. She knew she'd be asleep in the first five minutes. She loved the scientist, not his taste in entertainment.

She sighed and smoothed on her lipstick. Just then she heard a knock on the door. She looked at the clock 7:00 PM, right on cue, as always. Egon always did have an uncanny sense of timing. Must be that computer-like brain of his She thought smiling.

Janine took one last glance in the mirror, adjusted her dress, smiled sheepishly, inhaled and thought I hope he likes it. She went over to the door, struck the sexiest pose she could, unlocked the door and opened it.

Oh my She thought while appraising him with some amazement He's never looked so handsome. She couldn't help but recognise the aftershave she smelled lingering in the air. She smiled That's one of Doctor V's favourite scents. He always wears it to a particular Italian restaurant with his latest fling Ah-Ha! Though I'm not sure what it's called exactly, at least now I have an idea as to our destination. Thanks Doctor V, I owe you one... Janine then realised that her date was staring at her open-mouthed. She realised she'd better say something.

Janine, Egon thought, looked simply stunning. She wore an elegant full-length red satin dress. It had a split on the right side that went to halfway up her thigh, provocatively allowing her leg to be partly seen. Egon gulped when he realised it was a rather figure-hugging dress that also revealed her shoulders with it's thin straps. He gulped even harder when he saw that the dress was low-cut and showed off her considerable cleavage. He blushed and decided to look elsewhere, so he glanced down at her feet and noted that on them were pumps that matched the dress.

When he was able to look up again he saw her short, spunky hair had been subtly curled and fluffed up and something else... it was highlighted with a colour that was just a couple of shades lighter than her hair's natural fiery red. The highlights caught her vibrant green eyes. Her eyes were shaded with pink eye-shadow, framed by black eye-liner and mascara. They looked big and wide and smouldered with intensity as a result.

Her lips, full and inviting shone with a soft burgundy, her cheeks a rosy pink. Her pink-rimmed glasses did nothing to diminish the glow on her face.

She had a gold chain with a heart-shaped pendant hanging around her neck, she wore stud earrings that matched the pendant and a bracelet that matched the chain.

Janine's nails, normally red, were simply coated with clear polish tinged in pink. This made Egon smile briefly, he was so use to seeing her red nails, it was nice seeing them looking more natural.

Her look was completed with a purse that matched her shoes.

Then Egon noticed something else that made his stomach somersault. Her scent. It was an exotic, intoxicating blend of rose and lavender.

He was gob-smacked and felt so inadequate when compared to how she looked and smelled at that moment.

He relaxed a little when after she looked him up and down, smiled and said approvingly, "Oh Egon... you look so very handsome."

He was so taken in by her smile that he stammered like an idiot, "And... y... you... l... look... incredible." Truth be told she'd taken his breath away when she'd smiled at him like that. His jaw dropped again when...

She smiled again, a little impishly this time, and with a twinkle in her eyes said, "How about we blow off this thing and spend the evening here? We could curl up together on the couch and maybe... I don't know... find something... more... exciting to do... hmm?" Unable to resist she reached out and closed his mouth for him.

Egon's temperature rose at the feel of her fine hand on his chin and he blushed once more. And after what she'd hinted at all he could do was say, "Umm..." and finger his collar, anxiety creeping into every fibre of his being.

Janine laughed. "Don't worry. I was only teasing," She winked, then shut her apartment door.

Egon sighed with some relief that she'd only been joking.

Janine then took his hand and led him away, "C'mon... let's go... Sexy." His eyes went wide at the nickname she'd just given him. She giggled knowing how easy it was to get under his skin. They then walked down the hallway and onto their next destination.

When Janine and Egon got outside Janine saw the waiting taxi and smiled, "Now that's service!"

She was about to open up the door of the taxi when Egon stopped her. "Allow me," He beamed as he opened the door for her.

She flashed him her most brilliant smile. "Always the gentleman, aye?"

Her smile was contagious, as it made him smile back.

Janine eased herself into the taxi. Egon shut the door, went around to the other side of the cab and got in. He leaned over and whispered, "To Momo's Italian Ristorante E Bar, please," to the driver who nodded.

Although Janine had a pretty good idea as to where they were going, thanks to Peter's clue, she couldn't resist the temptation to purr, "Oohh. You're being so mysterious tonight..." She sidled up to Egon. "So you're not telling me where we're going?"

Egon cleared his throat. "My lips are sealed."

Janine smiled mischievously. "Let's see if I can't do something about loosening those lips... hmm?" She whispered. She put a hand up to his face and drew him closer to her. He raised an eyebrow, but didn't pull away.

She kissed him. The kiss was soft, warm and gentle like a sunshower on a warm summer's day.

Egon was just beginning to enjoy the sensation of her velvety lips being pressed up against his when to his chagrin Janine pulled back and stared at him with a questioning look. Evidently she wanted to know if her little kissing tactic had worked.

He gave an uncharacteristic smirk and replied, "That was a most pleasurable way to try and get me to "spill it" so to speak, but I'm still not going to tell you."

Janine sighed in mock aggravation. "You always were a hard one to read Doctor Spengler..."

She leaned against him and rested her head on his shoulder. It felt so good to have him all to herself for once.

Egon slipped his arm around her and kissed the top of her head. He sighed inwardly. I love you Janine Melnitz and I want this night to be one you'll never forget. Nothing had ever felt so right than to have her in his arms at that moment.

No more words were needed as the cab drove along to Momo's.

A too few moments later the taxi pulled up outside Momo's Italian Ristorante E Bar. Egon paid the driver and got out.

He went around to Janine's side of the taxi and opened the door for her. He held out his hand for her to take, which she gratefully accepted as she climbed out. She watched Egon close the door before the taxi drove away.

Egon then offered Janine his right arm, so she slipped her left arm through it. He was just about to escort her to the door of the restaurant when she stopped in her tracks as she looked up and read the name above the door.

Janine grinned Italian... I knew it! Better not let on that I had a feeling that that's what it was going to be.

"Italian!" she squealed in delight. "Oh Egon... That's my favourite! How ever did you know?"

Egon looked a little taken by surprise. "Oh... Well... I have my resources." He winked, a rarity for him, then gestured toward the door, "Shall we?"

"Let's," she replied, and they walked arm in arm up to the door of Momo's. Egon once again held it open for Janine and after she stepped through it he followed her, allowing the door shut to itself behind him.

The restaurant played soft songs over the speakers. It was appropriately dimly lit and each table had a candle burning on it. It was decorated with tasteful paintings of the Italian countryside and it's beautiful cities. Hmm... perfect Egon ruminated ...except for that small dance floor. I hope she doesn't want to dance later. I can't dance to save myself.

Janine and Egon walked up to the front counter and Egon gave the Maître D his name. "Of course Doctor Spengler. This way, please," he said and led them over to a quiet, secluded little table in the corner.

Janine's smile broadened Hmm... cosy She thought as she placed her purse on the table.

The Maître D helped them into their seats, handed them each a menu and quietly left.

Janine looked briefly at her menu and put it down; she already knew what she wanted. She leaned over the table and whispered to Egon, "This place is really nice isn't it?"

He was so busy studying his menu that he barely heard her, so all he did was respond with a typical, "Hmmm...?"

Janine just stared at him and had to suppress a giggle as she thought He looks so cute when he's studying.

She smiled wickedly to herself as she formulated a plan to get his attention. She slipped off a shoe and slid her foot up and down Egon's leg.

He just about dropped his menu as he looked up in shock, cheeks as red as her dress. He fingered his collar and hissed, "Janine..."

That did it she thought satisfied. Then feigning innocence said, "What?" She surreptitiously slid her foot back into her shoe.

He smiled sheepishly and rolled his eyes. "Alright. I've decided what I'm going to have," he said at last.

"So... are you going to throw caution to the wind and have a drink with me tonight?"

Egon eyes softened and he grinned, "For you... anything. What would you like?"

Janine pondered for a moment. "Well," she replied, "I think the house wine would be nice. As for what I'd like to eat... spaghetti."

"Spaghetti huh?"

"Yeah. I like a classic," she winked.

Egon chuckled and said, "I'll have lasagne."

He then called over a waiter who took their order.

"So Egon..." Janine started in a serious tone after the waiter left, "What made you decide to ask me out all of a sudden? I mean I've been back for two weeks now after... well... you know." She didn't want to bring up all the stupid mistakes she'd made with regards to getting the Makoveris Lotsabucks to change her to please Egon.

"I didn't want to rush..." he didn't like the way this conversation was headed.

"What rush? It took you seven years just to tell me how you felt."

"To be fair Janine you never actually told me how you felt about me either except in a playful, non serious manner. And sure there was the flirting, the hugs and a couple of kisses. But nothing more substantial."

"Ohhh!" she pretended to be mortally wounded. "I deserved that one."

"I'm sorry." Egon closed his eyes briefly and opened them again. "It's just that it drove me crazy watching you saunter about the Firehouse, blowing me kisses and batting your eyelids. I wondered whether you were in love with me or simply infatuated."

"To be honest Egon, at first that's just what it was and I thought it'd go away after I got to know you better. But I think it was around about the time yours and Slimer's minds were exchanged, when I heard your voice... your words coming out of the Spud's mouth that I realised what I felt for you was love." Janine swallowed hard. "I told you it was your mind I really liked, instead of loved because I was afraid you didn't feel the same way."

Egon frowned. "For me at first I simply found your advances distracting for two reasons. First I thought that you were extremely attractive and that on it's own distracted me. Second I foolishly thought I just wanted to continue my research and experiments and couldn't afford such distractions. Admittedly those were some of the things my father drilled into me from the moment I could say test-tube. So I threw up barriers of emotional detachment to keep you and the growing feelings I had for you at bay. It was on the day of Ragnarok when the others and I were preparing ourselves to die in order to save the world, and all I could think about was you and I murmured your name under my breath so the others wouldn't hear, was when I realised I couldn't deny to myself any longer that I was in love with you. But I still stupidly said nothing for fear of entering into a relationship I wasn't ready for."

Janine gasped, it sounded so bitter-sweet, realising how he felt as he was about to die, when it was too late to act on it, then hiding it when he didn't die because he feared what it might bring.

"So, due to lack of communication on both our parts we threw up barriers and just resigned ourselves to silly flirtations," she admitted.

"Because of my idiocy Janine I nearly lost you three times. First to that so-called businessman Paul Smart, who was merely using you. I boiled with jealously; he made me so angry I wanted to rearrange his smarmy face."

This revelation made Janine bite her lower lip. Egon continued, "Second you had that... fling... with... Louis Tully. Whenever I thought about it, it made me ill. I felt he had no right to even be in the same room with you after I found out let alone touch you."

Janine shuddered at the memories and looked down. "It still makes me feel sick," she whispered bitterly.

"It hurt me a lot, but I forgave you and soon got over it, even if you didn't or couldn't." Egon cleared his throat. "Then third when the others and I found out about the Makoveris Lotsabucks. It all made sense."

"Do you have to bring up that subject?" More bad memories surfaced and Janine began to cry.

"Yes because it leads me to the answer to your question," Egon replied, he wanted Janine to understand the reasons for her irrational behaviour. "Partly the reasons for your mistakes were the mistakes I made. I virtually ignored you and that drove you to accept the "help" of the Lotsabucks. I'm not sure if you know this but part of it's power was to hide the changes it made to you from everyone, especially me. I suspect it knew how we felt about each other and that if I was actually able to notice the changes then I would've stopped it. Then it began to influence you badly in your decision making. Of course once it knew that the others and I knew about it, thanks to your scrapbook, it tried to take you away. I hate thinking about how close I came to losing you for good this time." He closed his eyes again and took a deep breath. "I realised I had to knock down my barriers at last and tell you how I felt in order to save you." His eyes opened.

Confused Janine looked up now and asked quietly, fearfully, "Is that the only reason you said it? To save me?"

"Of course not," Egon replied softly. "When I told you I loved you I meant it. And I should have said it sooner, but I love you more than I can ever say. So..." he breathed. "Now comes the answer to your question, the reason I waited to ask you out was to make sure you were completely recovered before taking you on the next part of our... journey. After you came back and started yelling at everyone like it was old times I knew you were ready."

The tears were cascading down Janine's cheeks now. "Oh Egon..." she began shakily. "I love you so much it hurts sometimes. Having you say all that makes me realise how much you really do love me too."

Egon smiled gently. "Hey. Hey. What's this?" He reached out his hand and wiped away the tears on Janine's face with his thumb. "That's not like you. Anybody would think you just lost your best friend or something."

Janine smiled sheepishly and almost started laughing, but her mouth was so dry all she could do was swallow. "No. I just gained a new love... a real love." She stretched across the table and placed a trembling hand on his.

"In my case... my first love... apart from science that is," Egon stated and placed his hand comfortingly on hers. Just that slight touch of his hand on hers steadied her immediately.

Janine rolled her eyes fondly, knowing she'd always have to share Egon with science. She suddenly pulled away, realising what the tears must have done to her face. "Oh my gosh!" she moaned, putting her hands up to her cheeks. "I must look awful!" She stood up. "Excuse me, Egon, while I go and fix my make-up." She grabbed her purse and headed for the ladies.

Egon sighed and shook his head with affection. Don't ever change Janine... at least not again. I love you just the way you are...

His thoughts were interrupted by the arrival of his and Janine's dinner.

He thanked and tipped the waiter and patiently waited for Janine's return.

Oh Egon Janine thought as she entered the ladies' room you were right about that damn witch, she was in my head for years egging me on."Egon doesn't care about you. He doesn't even think you're pretty," it used to say playing on my low self-esteem "Go out with Paul Smart. He's very charming and rich." So I did what she told me just like a child obeying her parents. Then "Louis is an accountant and a lawyer. He's going to be rich." That in and of itself should've told me not to believe her because I knew that that was so beyond ridiculous, really. But she sounded so damn convincing. Hmph... they could've given her an Oscar. And Egon you were even more absorbed in your work than usual that I hardly ever saw you at the time. Between my loneliness and the witch's seductive words in my head I made the biggest mistake of my life. I spent New Year's Eve of that year with Louis Tully while I was still in love with you! Even if I did fake it the whole time, the next morning when I saw you l felt so awful, so guilty, even dirty, because it felt like I'd just committed the ultimate betrayal.

Janine felt sick again, but suppressed the urge to hurl. But just three weeks ago you said the words I'd been longing to hear. Three words that meant so much. I love you. That was something not the witch nor anybody else could've given me. The only thing I truly wanted. You gave me your love, even if the timing could've been better she mused. The witch wasn't expecting that and it gave me the strength to break free of her tight, insidious grip. Now you're here with me at last proving your love for me, giving me all your attention, going to so much trouble for me... all for me and no one else. It sounds selfish I know but tonight at least I just want you all to myself. Oh Egon I feel silly for getting so upset. Bringing all that up again was just your way of making me face it all at last and putting it into perspective for me. Egon you're truly amazing and I love you.

Janine felt very thirsty so she reached into her purse and dug out a medicine cup she always carried with her to allow her to take aspirin for headaches. A girl must be prepared for anything afterall. She filled it with water from the basin and drank the liquid. It tasted disgusting, but it did the job. She looked in the mirror and saw her tear streaked face. Let's see if I can't fix that. She put the medicine cup away and took her emergency supply of cosmetics out of her purse and began to redo her make-up. She smiled. This time it'll look even better. Egon Spengler'll never know what hit him she thought with fearless determination.

When Janine returned she saw that dinner had arrived. Appetite back she thought Mmm... looks delicious and... I'm starving.

Her face bared no signs of the tears she had shed earlier. Indeed it had an almost ethereal glow now.

Egon was still concerned about her though. He was worried that he'd gone too far with his explanation. "Are you alright?"

She smiled lovingly. "I'm fine really," she said with conviction as she took her seat again. "And what's more I'm really hungry." She twirled her spaghetti onto her fork and ate it. "And Egon... thank you." She leaned over the table and tenderly kissed him with not even the slightest hint of hesitation. "Things are a lot clearer to me now."

Egon was relieved when she said and did that and so he started consuming a small portion of his lasagne, one eye still on her, then he remarked that he was amazed at how patient she had actually been with him over the years.

"Well. It sure wasn't easy. I don't know how your mother coped. I think she was a saint," Janine said with a twinkle in her eyes, knowing that although Egon loved his mother he could get embarrassed whenever she told anyone stories about when he was growing up. Janine liked Egon's mother very much, she helped to give Janine new and interesting insights into Egon's past. Janine briefly remembered the time they'd found a baby ghost and Slimer babysat while the guys fought it's parents not knowing that they were looking for their baby and how Egon had suggested they call it Spookums because he'd confessed sheepishly that that's what his mom called him when he was little. She giggled at the memory and then continued. "Honestly... sometimes I felt like screaming."

"And now?" he prodded.

She smiled, "Now I feel like climbing the highest mountain and yelling at the top of my lungs that we're in love."

"Hmm... if you decide to do that sometime, let me know and I'll join you," he said a little uncharacteristically.

Janine laughed joyfully.

"In the meantime," Egon went on as he picked up the bottle of wine, "How about you and I drink a toast?"

He popped the cork and filled their glasses with the red alcoholic beverage.

"To what?" Janine wanted to know.

"To putting the past behind us and concentrating on the future... our future. The new journey we're embarking on together."

"To our future..." Janine agreed, holding up her glass. They clinked their glasses together and took a sip of the wine.

Egon looked longingly at Janine as she set her glass back down. Oh my... she looks so beautiful by candlelight. He told her so.

"And you look incredibly sexy."

They leaned over the table and kissed. Egon thought Janine's lips tasted fascinatingly sweet at that moment. Could it be the wine? No... it's her... His pulse raced and his temperature rose as he realised he didn't want to stop ...Definitely all her. Funny how at ease I feel with her when we kiss... almost as if we are... no... that's never been proven scientifically... His thoughts trailed off as he lost himself in the sweet embrace of her lips.

Janine wasn't complaining but she thought Egon was being rather forward tonight. Maybe he's knocking down more of those barriers... Whatever... as long as he keeps knocking 'em down... I don't mind. She just loved the feel of his generous lips on hers. She just knew deep in the pit of her soul that this... him and her... was meant to be. For when they kissed it was like magic. She felt her cheeks turning pink.

They reluctantly parted to come up for air and stared at each other grinning from ear to ear.

"Amazing," Egon said simply.

"Ditto," Janine agreed.

Janine looked into his eyes and suddenly a moment of clarity hit her as if destiny was waving her hand in Janine's direction. Oh my god! I now know the reason why I've always been drawn to Egon. It's because he's my soulmate. The missing part of me, the part that tempers and calms me. That's why there's always that spark of recognition, familiarity and contentment between us when we kiss. And it's been there since our very first kiss from years ago, I just didn't realise it 'till now. We're two halves of the same soul separated aeons ago by fate and preordained to meet each other, no matter the odds, every lifetime throughout history... throughout all eternity. Janine smiled at the revelation, but didn't tell Egon, she knew he didn't believe in such things.

Egon downed another mouthful of lasagne and took a sip of wine. He saw the faraway smile on her face and asked her what she was thinking about.

"Well... you'll think it's silly... So I won't tell you."

"Try me."

She told him.

He blinked a couple of times and said, "I personally think that the concept of soulmates is highly unlikely. But not impossible." Deep down though he wondered if she was right. Hadn't he just felt the recognition too? He also felt that she completed him. Like she was the lost part of him that gave him the emotions he needed to be a real human being at last. Not just the computer on legs that his family, well apart from his mother, wanted him to be. He and Janine even occasionally thought the same thing at about the same time and finished each other's sentences. Like just now when she mentioned her belief that they're soulmates, something that he'd briefly pondered and then dismissed while they were kissing. Perhaps it is worth investigating a bit more. There are some books at the Firehouse on the subject... I might do some research on it tomorrow... just to satisfy my curiosity of course... but right now I'll just concentrate on tonight.

And so Egon then proceeded to watch Janine wolf down another mouthful of food so fast she didn't even notice that some of the sauce got on her nose.

Egon thought she looked cute. He smiled mischievously and told her about it.

She blushed, clearly embarrassed and was about to use her napkin to wipe it away when Egon said, "Allow me."

He used his napkin to get rid of it for her. She wriggled her nose and giggled.

He chuckled evilly. "Oh... so you have a ticklish nose?"

"Yes," she replied fiercely. "And I know for a fact that you are extremely ticklish in the ribs."

"Oh." He shot up an eyebrow. "And just how did you find out about that?"

"Your mother."

Egon groaned and slapped his forehead. "Mom!" he cursed.

"So," Janine teased, "If you tickle my nose, I'll just have to tickle your ribs." She giggled and took another sip of wine.

"Hmm..." Egon contemplated that scenario and surprisingly cheekily said, "Maybe... I might... well... enjoy that."

Janine nearly choked on her wine. She looked at him from across the table wide-eyed. He never admits to things like that.

It was her turn to be speechless. "Umm... could you pour me another... aggh... glass, please?" was all she managed to say as she held out the empty glass. I think I'm gonna need it.

Egon obliged. He felt delighted at having made Janine speechless for a change, since it was normally he who ended up saying things like ummm and aggh and generally stuttering when trying to reply to her brassiness.

Right Janine thought Time to turn the table back round on him.

"Oh by the way, Egon, I'm glad you didn't take me somewhere where you could've ordered chicken soup with mushrooms. Or else you would've spent the whole time picking out the mushrooms and sticking them in jars you had in your pockets so you could add them to your collection, just like you've done before. Why I'm surprised you didn't bring your favourite toy with you. I mean I thought you and it were joined at the hip or something."

Egon snorted, knowing what she was referring to. "You know me too well. I did consider bringing the PKE meter with me but I knew you'd kill me... so I thought better of it." He finished drinking his glass of wine.

She groaned and stuck her tongue out at him.

"Oh that's real charming," he shot back with a tinge of sarcasm. He finished off the last of his lasagne.

Janine simply watched Egon eating lovingly and coyly played with the rim of her wine glass with her fingertips. Egon wiped his mouth with his napkin and noticed what she was doing. He knew what it meant and he blushed for the umpteenth time.

Janine realised that he saw her idly playing with the glass and quickly finished off the drink.

She suddenly felt delightfully tipsy.

"You know Egon..." she began but two men who had been at the bar staggered over to their table and interrupted.

One of them was short and squat with light brown hair and green eyes. The other was short and thin with dark blond hair and brown eyes.

The thin one looked at Janine and drooled. "Hey Kitten... we bin watchin' you from the bar. We sthink you're a real looker," he slurred, clearly he'd been drinking too much. "Wanna danshe? I shink they're playin' our shong..."

Egon watched the scene with mild amusement. He knew girls from Brooklyn were tough and could take care of themselves and Janine, as he'd learned more than once, was no exception.

Janine scowled at the man with disdain. "I wouldn't dance with you if you were the last man on Earth." She glanced over at Egon to gage his reaction; he seemed satisfied with that answer.

The smelly drunk followed her gaze. Then looked back at her. "C'mon Baby... ditsch thish shquare an' let a real man schow you 'ow to 'ave a good time." He hiccuped and swayed on the floor where he stood.

The squat man was looking at Egon with a lopsided, snide little grin. Arms folded Egon glared at him over the top of his glasses.

Janine said in her most sarcastic voice to the annoyingly persistent man, "Funny... the only real man I see here is my date." She gestured at Egon.

The impudent man didn't even bother looking at Egon. He was too busy ogling Janine's breasts. "Well Honey... looksh like you got enough to go 'round..." He grabbed Janine's arm and attempted to drag her out of her chair.

She tried to loosen the man's grip to no avail. "Hey pal! Take your hand off me!" she yelled.

Egon Spengler was not prone to being angry but this turn of events made him furious. He shot straight up, pushed the silent, squat drunk out of the way without even bothering to look at him, as his eyes were fixed solely on Janine's arm, and stepped over to the rude, pushy man with one stride. He towered over both of the bloodshot-eyed drunken men. Apparently they didn't realise how tall Janine's date was as they suddenly seemed intimidated by him. Egon stared down the short little man and growled, "Now you listen here you... you... unctuous, fatuous hominoid... the lady is with ME and she already told you she did not want to dance with YOU! Now kindly take your hand off of her and take your leave!"

By this point the other restaurant patrons were staring at them. The Maître D came over and asked if everything was alright.

Egon didn't take his penetrating blue eyes off the drunk who'd been hassling the woman that he loves and said, "Everything's fine." Then he asked the creep rhetorically, "Isn't it?"

The jerk removed the grasp he had on Janine's arm and looked at her one more time. "Fine," he conceded. "Your loss, Toots."

Janine rolled her eyes. "Hmph... Hardly."

The Maître D apologised for the trouble and escorted the two drunken reprobates off the premises.

The rest of the people in Momo's being typical New Yorkers shrugged and went back to eating their meals and continued their conversations as if nothing had happened.

Egon straightened his suit, pushed his glasses that had slipped during the confrontation back up his nose, sat down, closed his eyes, inhaled and counted to ten.

When he opened his eyes again he gazed at Janine solicitously. "Are you alright? Did that drunkard hurt you?"

She rubbed her arm where she'd been grabbed. "Yeah, I'm fine. I've copped worse when I've gone on occasional busts with you and the guys over the years." She looked at him a little sternly. "You didn't have to do that you know. I can take care of myself."

"I know. I just want to protect you that's all," he replied unashamedly, reaching over the table, taking her hand.

She squeezed his hand warmly and smiled. "What did you call that prick anyway? Unctuous, fatuous hominoid was it? What does that mean?"

"Unctuous means 'oily mannered.' Fatuous means 'vacantly silly; purposeless' and hominoid means 'animal that resembles a human'."

Janine laughed out loud. "I love it when you say stuff like that!"

"I thought you might find it amusing."

Janine had to catch her breath so she gradually stopped laughing. "I've known guys like that my entire life. They think that just because I'm a girl from Brooklyn I must be easy or something." She sighed. "Some of my old bosses thought that too and tried their moves on me. I usually responded by kneeing them somewhere that caused their voices to become somewhat high-pitched. Then I'd quit."

She saw the incredulous expression on Egon's face, poured him another glass of wine and handed it to him. "Here... want another drink?"

"Thanks... don't mind if I do." He sculled it. He felt just a little light-headed after that, but not quite drunk.

Janine looked at him in awe. Wow. Looks like he needed it. She mused to herself. He holds his alcohol better than I thought too.

"Anyway," Janine continued, "When you guys became my new bosses I was surprised Doctor Venkman kept his hands to himself, lucky for him. He became like my sibling rival and we fight as such. Ray I look upon like a little brother. He's so sweet and kind of innocent. And you... you were so polite and quiet. You were so cute and for once I found myself wishing that one of my bosses would come on to me. When you didn't... I was even more intrigued. How could I possibly resist the impulse to flirt with a man who was so opposite to most of the men I'd known throughout my adult life up to that point?..." She inhaled. "In retrospect Egon I'm glad you played hard to get... that you kept you hands to yourself or else I would've gone "Oh... he's just like every other boss I've had" and decked you instead."

"Really?" Egon asked, adjusting his glasses, terrified at the notion.

"Really," she answered, amused at his expression.

Egon then smiled. "What about Winston and Slimer?"

"Winston is like an older brother who can be replied upon especially when needed. He's someone who I can talk to about normal stuff." Janine emphasised the word normal and giggled, normal was not a word you usually associated with the Ghostbusters. "Slimer is like a little kid. Eats voraciously, cries when yelled at and sulks when nobody pays him attention. I gotta tell you Egon you and the others are like another family to me. We fight sometimes over the stupidest little things but protect each other when trouble rears it's ugly head."

"Like just now?" Egon cocked an eyebrow.


Egon nodded with understanding. "I feel the same way. The phrase 'Friends are the family you choose for yourself' never rang more true than it does for us... the Ghostbusters' family." He went on with, "You know Janine... You have opened up a whole new world of emotions... sensations... and love that I never even knew I needed... or wanted. You've filled the... void in me that was empty for so long... and I love you for that alone..." He took her hand and kissed it.

"Awww... shucks," Janine said smiling with a silly look. Her smile widened. "Why don't you prove your love for me by dancing with me?"

Oh no, I was hoping she wouldn't want me to do that. Egon grimaced. "I'm a hopeless dancer Janine..."

"Oh Egon... all you really have to do is hold me close and sway to the music," she purred. "C'mon..."

Unable to resist her encouraging purr Egon allowed himself to be dragged to the dance floor.

As if on cue the song "The Lady in Red" by Chris De Burgh started playing.

How appropriate Egon mused.

I've never seen you looking so lovely as you did tonight,

I've never seen you shine so bright.

Hmmm Hmm Hmmm Hmm...

I've never seen so many men ask you if you wanted to dance,

Looking for a little romance,

Give her half a chance.

I have never seen that dress you're wearing,

Or the highlights in your hair,

They catch your eyes,

I have been blind.

Lady in red,

Is dancing with me... cheek to cheek.

There's nobody here,

It's just you and me,

It's where I wanna be.

I hardly know this beauty by my side.

I'll never forget,

Egon held her close... very close. He leaned over just a little bit so his chin rested on her head. He closed his eyes and breathed in the sweet scent of her hair, it smelled like dew drops on roses in the morning. He put his hands around her and placed them on the small of her back. His pulse raced as he felt her heart reverberating through his chest.

Janine had her eyes shut savouring every moment... every sensation. His smell... his warmth... his arms. She rested her right hand on his chest and felt his heart pounding. She placed her left hand up behind his head and drew him even closer. She nestled her cheek against his neck, she could hear his heart beating and it sounded beautiful.

It seemed at that moment that they were the only two people in the room... maybe even on the entire planet.

They continued swaying to the gentle rhythm of the Chris De Burgh ballad.

I've never seen you looking so gorgeous as you did tonight,

I've never seen you shine so bright.

You were amazing.

I've never seen so people want to be there by your side,

And when you turned to me and smiled,

You took my breath away.

I have never had such a feeling,

Such a feeling of complete and utter love...

As I do tonight.

Lady in red,

Is dancing with me... cheek to cheek.

There's nobody here,

It's just you and me,

It's where I wanna be.

I hardly know this beauty by my side.


I'll never forget,

The way you look tonight.

I never will forget,

The way you look tonight.

The lady in red.

The lady in red.

The lady in red.

"I love you," Egon whispered to Janine as the beautiful song faded out. He opened his eyes and as usual his face reddened as he realised they had an audience. The other people in the room and on the dance floor had been admiring the couple. Some of them were even murmuring to each other. Evidently Egon and Janine had been recognised.

Oh great Egon thought and led Janine back to the table. She had a dreamy expression on her face. He clicked his fingers. "Janine... are you in there?"

She came out of her reverie. I wish we could've stayed out there... that was the most romantic moment I've ever experienced. "I love you Egon." She looked over at the door.

He sensed her desire to leave, but asked, "Do you want dessert?" anyway.

Her eyes upon him once more. "I'm looking at it," she replied and sparkled with joy as she'd managed to provoke yet another blush out of the tall, blond haired physicist she loves.

"You're ready to go then?" he asked after he'd collected himself once again.

"Yeah. I am." She took the arm he offered her.

Egon and Janine walked over to the front counter. The Maître D once again apologised for the trouble earlier.

"Think nothing of it, sir," Egon told him. "My lady and I found it somewhat amusing..."

Janine smiled as she remembered what Egon had told the drunken, smelly breathed man who'd tried to pick her up despite the obvious fact that she was already on a date.

"Nevertheless," The Maître D continued, "Consider tonight's meal on the house."

Egon smiled gratefully. "Thank you."

Arm in arm once more Janine Melnitz and Egon Spengler left the establishment both knowing full well they'd left quite an interesting mark on the place.

Janine and Egon walked along, hand in hand, neither in a particular rush to go home just yet. The streets were quiet with only a few people milling about.

"Well this is one night I know I'll never forget," Janine admitted.

"I was hoping you'd say that," Egon confessed, squeezing her hand.

Despite it being spring and the days were getting warmer; the nights were still somewhat chilly. As a result Janine in her slinky red number gave a little shiver. She rubbed her arms.

Her reaction did not escape Egon's attention. "Cold?"

"A little," she returned with a faint smile.

"Here, you can borrow this," he said taking off his jacket and slipping it over her arms and onto her slight frame.

"Oh Egon... thank you." She buttoned up the jacket; it felt warm after being on the insanely hot body of the man she loves. "I feel better already. But what about you?"

"I'll be fine," he told her with no hesitation and wrapped his arm around her shoulder. Indeed he would be as his white shirt was long sleeved.

He glanced down at her and a half smile formed on his lips. He couldn't help thinking how cute she looked. Her small body enveloped in his jacket.

They continued walking, simply enjoying each other's company.

After an undetermined amount of time Egon and Janine came to a small park which was apparently deserted. There was a small fountain in the centre. The fountain cascaded up and down in an indiscernible pattern. Soft green, red, blue and yellow lights danced on the surface of the water. It was quite beautiful.

There was a bench nearby. Normally a park at night in New York wasn't the safest place to be. So Egon took a good look around to see if there were any suspicious looking characters lurking about. After he was satisfied that no one was in the vicinity, he gestured to the bench.

"How about we rest our weary old bones?" he asked.

Janine giggled, "Weary old bones, Egon?"

"Well... we aren't exactly in our twenties anymore. I'm 33 and you're-"

Janine gently slapped his arm. "Egon... Shhh..." She looked around.

"There isn't even anybody else here to hear old you are."

"Maybe... But I still don't like to be reminded of my age," she hissed.

"Anyway you still look as young as you did the day we met."

"Awww... Egon... that's sweet." She blushed at the compliment.

They strolled over to the bench, sat down and watched the fountain.

Janine glanced at Egon. She couldn't help but think how incredible he looked in the moonlight. She reached up her hand to the back of his head and ran her fingers through the blond hair. This made the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end. He got goosebumps and shivered with nervous anticipation.

"Now look who's cold," she teased.

"It's not from the cold night air I assure you," he returned, eyebrow raised.

Janine cooed, "Really?" She loved it when he raised his eyebrow like that, she thought it made him look so damn sexy and it cause her heart to flutter everytime she saw it as it did now. She then grinned devilishly and moved her hand toward the back of Egon's neck. She idly twisted his rat's tail around her index finger. She placed her other hand on his leg and stroked it in a stimulating way.

Egon stiffened and gulped, as he felt flushed.

"So tell me Egon... How did you ever get this curious hair anyway?" she probed. Janine remembered seeing the pictures the other Ghostbusters had taken of Egon that time he'd de-aged into a baby, which had really annoyed him. She'd kicked herself for not being there that day to see it for herself and ever since she'd wondered if he'd looked like that when he was a baby the first time around or if was some kind of side effect that had taken place as a result of his latest supernaturally based transformation.

He cleared his throat and licked his dry lips. "Mom said I've had it since I was a baby. My unusual blond locks are a Spengler family trait."

Aggh... now she knew.

"Oh. Fascinating." She smiled almost on the edge of laughter when his head swung and he looked at her realising she'd just used his favourite word.

"C'mon Egon..." Janine stood up suddenly and pulled him to his feet. "Let's take a closer look at that fountain."

"Very well," he said, reluctant to leave the seat and a little disappointed that she'd stopped her playful touching.

Dammit. Janine's driving me nuts flirting tonight... Egon knew his behaviour tonight was utterly irrational and crazy (and even maybe a little alcoholically induced) but as he was slowly starting to learn love rarely made sense. So he resigned himself to let go of at least some of his inhibitions for the rest of the night and start having fun. Being with Janine was definitely having a positive effect on him.

Janine and Egon stood before the fountain watching it perform it's dance.

Janine grinned slyly. Ever spontaneous she decided to test the mettle of the man she loves. She reached up without him noticing and tickled his side mercilessly.

He pulled away reflexively.

"You're it!" Janine declared. She hoisted up her dress and dashed off to the other side of the fountain.

"Oooh... You are so going down Ms Melnitz!" Egon shouted and sprinted off after her.

Janine laughed breathlessly as she ran around the fountain, the wind whipping her hair.

Egon could have easily caught up with her due to his longer legs, but he wanted her to have her fun, so he slowed his pace.

After a few laps he stopped, spun around on his heels 180 degrees and waited until Janine came crashing into his arms.

"Caught you!" he announced breathily.

"You sure did!" she cooed grinning from ear to ear. "You outsmarted me, you know..." she said with mock seriousness.

"Well... I'm not just a pretty face," he joked.

"Oohhh... you've been hanging around Doctor Venkman too much," she said rolling her eyes.

"Oh yeah?"


"Maybe I have. He's been teaching me bad habits... like this..."

Without warning he scooped her up and made like he was going to throw her into the fountain. She squealed and shut her eyes tight. "Egon!"

"One." He swung her forward, then back. "Two." He repeated the motion. "Three." He stopped halfway through swing three.

Janine slowly opened her eyes and looked down at him.

"Just kidding..." Egon grinned with some mischief.

Janine hit his shoulder. "Ohh... I hate you!"

"No you don't," he said setting her back down gently.

Janine felt dizzy. "Yes I do," she replied sulkily.

Egon leaned in enticingly for a kiss. "No you don't."

"I..." her voice trailed off as she forgot what she was saying and surrendered to the kiss.

The kiss gradually deepened and became more passionate.

Egon ran his hand through Janine's fire hued hair and with the other he'd placed firmly on her back pulled her closer. Both their hearts accelerated at this movement and they moaned slightly as the intense lust and desire they felt between them in that instant threatened to overwhelm them.
The fountain's lights played on their faces as Janine gripped Egon's arms tightly, her nails almost digging in. His arms felt strong and toned from years of running around with a proton pack on his back and gun in hand, fighting and firing at all sorts of evil paranormal entities.

The water of the fountain shot up into the air as if to emphasise the extreme sexual attraction between them at that moment.

A shooting star streaked across the sky. Another clue that these two were meant to be. However it went by unnoticed as Janine and Egon's attention was focused solely on the unwavering kiss.

Alas all good things must come to an end and their lips slowly parted. They put their foreheads together as they caught their breath. They were both flushed from the rush of passion and excitement.

Janine then stared into Egon's intense blue eyes with her own bewitching green eyes.

"Egon... take me home..." she whispered huskily.

He nodded, took her hand and hailed a passing cab.

They hopped into it as they had done at the beginning of this most memorable and romantic night. Egon gave the driver Janine's address. The driver nodded and drove the taxi out.

Janine interlaced the fingers of her right hand with Egon's left. She brought his hand up to her mouth and kissed it. Then held it against her cheek.

Again she snuggled up to him during the taxi ride home.

By the time the cab reached Janine's apartment building Janine was asleep. Egon had been watching her sleeping, her chest rising and descending steadily as she breathed. She looked so vulnerable and innocent at that moment. It was hard for him to comprehend that this was the same woman who had so much fire, spirit and passion in her soul. The very things that had made him fall in love with her. To see her so peaceful was very unusual and influenced his next decision. He decided right there and then that he wanted to be there for her from now on, to protect her from all the evils in both this world and others. But right now it was his duty to simply see her safely to her door. Reluctantly he gently roused her awake.

Janine opened her eyes and looked out the window to see she was home. She stifled a yawn; she didn't want Egon to see how tired she was becoming.

Egon leaned forward and paid the taxi driver, then hopped out and went around to the other side of the taxi and helped Janine out of it. When he shut the door, the taxi drove away and Egon and Janine, holding hands, went inside the building.

They reached her door. Janine dug her keys out of her purse and unlocked it. She turned to Egon and said, "Do you want to come inside, Egon? We could have some coffee; watch a little TV and who knows what else..." She trailed off and winked, letting him absorb the implications that went along with that suggestion.

Egon may be shy, but he's not stupid he knew what she was getting at and it made him start to perspire nervously. Kissing, hugging, holding and flirting was one thing, but he wasn't quite ready to become that intimate with Janine... yet. He tugged his collar self-consciously.

His voice went a couple of octaves higher than normal as he said, "Umm... I..." He then cleared his throat and his voice went back to it's usual bass tone. Janine smiled as he continued to trip over his own words. "That is... I don't think... that's such... a... ummm... good idea right now... and... Janine... What are you doing?"

Janine had turned around and stepped inside her apartment for a moment. She took off Egon's jacket and tossed it along with her purse onto the couch. She took off her glasses and placed them on the table near the door, then turned back to face Egon.

Egon's heart just about jumped into his throat as he saw her glasses free face, smiling saucily back at him. He couldn't recall a time that he'd ever seen her without them on. She looked ever more beautiful.

Feigning renewed energy Janine sauntered over to Egon, grabbed his tie and yanked on it, pulling him toward her. "Mmmp," was all he managed to get out before their mouths met. This kiss over all the others that night was by far the most passionate and intense. Egon felt his blood rushing to every part of his body. His glasses fogged up as a result.

Oh my... he thought as he got even hotter I'm not sure if I can resist... even if I wanted to...

Janine broke the kiss and proceeded to loosen his tie. Egon's eyes widened as she also very slowly and enticingly undid the top button of his shirt. She slipped her right arm up behind his back and rubbed it with her hand. Her left hand went up and she ran her fingers through his hair. She moved forward and pressed her shapely body completely up against his lean one. She moved her right hand down a little lower and squeezed his behind, something she'd always wanted to do. This made him swing his hips forward reflexively, which in turn caused their lower halves to become even closer. She grinned slightly at the reaction doing that had provoked in him and how good the resultant movement had felt. Then she placed her hungry mouth on his neck. It tasted oddly spicy and faintly sweet like cinnamon, it was quite delicious. She gasped softly and wanting to taste more kissed his neck hard in several places... several times. She could feel him burning up and it made her own temperature rise a few degrees, not that she minded as it turned her on even more.

The feel of Janine's breasts making such close contact with his chest and how close their lower halves had just become made Egon feel giddy. He gulped as the kisses she was placing on his neck were irresistible, seductive and were making him feel quite amorous. He could barely breathe as he smelled her perfume again, it was so inviting as if it was calling his name. He placed his hands on her almost completely, save for the straps of her dress, bare shoulders and caressed them. Her skin felt silky smooth, soft and warm. He felt a strong, undeniable and somewhat primitive urge to kiss her neck... shoulders... and other slightly lower parts of her relentlessly delectable, desirable body...

Janine suddenly stopped her arousing, sexually exciting neck kissing demonstration, which made Egon just about groan with disappointment.

Wondering what was up he looked at her and saw her glancing downwards. She looked back up at him and grinned smugly. "Why Egon..." she purred, with just a tinge of surprise in her voice, "I knew you could be a little stiff from time to time, but really..." she looked up at the ceiling feigning shock. She then stared at him, eyes blissful, stroked his neck and sensually remarked, "It looks like I discovered your erogenous zone."

Egon sweated and blushed profusely as he felt a little ashamed. Oh dammit... I didn't even realise, I'm that light-headed. I can't believe my small brain has overruled my large one, without me even noticing no less... I must stop before we get any further.

"Janine," he said at last, stopping her as she was about to start devouring him again. "It's not that I don't want... to do this... with you, because... this... ummm... oh gosh..." He searched desperately for the right words.

Janine provided an all too appropriate one for him, "Foreplay?"

Egon cleared his throat. "Right... umm... for...foreplay... feels so good... and that's putting it... well, mildly..." He laughed nervously as he looked downwards, then back up at her. "But I, and you can call me old-fashioned if you like for saying it, don't think it's right to... aggh... consu... consummate... our relationship on the first date," he finished with a deep breath. "Plus," he added, "You're... ahem... a little tipsy aren't you?"

She nodded reluctantly while grinning rather crookedly. "Hmmn, hmmn."

"And..." he continued with his reasoning, "You've been a little tired since the taxi ride. So I just couldn't live with myself if I took advantage of you right now." Yeah... right, Egon. It'd be more like she'd take advantage of you. Oh wait that's another good bit of reasoning...

"I've also been drinking and that wine kind of went straight to my head. So I'm sure you must feel the same way about it. I hope you understand." He looked at her sort of apologetically.

Janine knew it was true and had to admit to herself. She was tipsy. And she felt strongly that when she and Egon did finally make love for the first time she didn't want to be affected by alcohol and run the risk of possibly waking up the next morning not being able to remember every single beautiful detail.

"Damn you Doctor Spengler!" she cried with mock outrage. "Why are you always right?"

"It's a burden I've learned to live with." He smiled gently, but playfully raised an eyebrow.

"There's more of Doctor V's influences," she moaned, annoyed with Venkman for corrupting Egon. "You gotta stop hanging around him."

"I definitely aim to break that habit. Maybe by spending more time with you." He took her face in his hands and kissed her softly, tenderly albeit quickly, lest the lust arose once again. "Janine, I love you, you know," Egon simply stated and he looked down at her with those irresistible blue eyes, while running his thumb over her delicate, creamy lips.

Janine's exquisite green eyes shined back adoringly. "I know, that's why you're being so chivalrous tonight by wanting to wait 'till we're both sober for our... first time..." she smirked and briefly thought about what it will actually be like, as she'd done so many times before this night... before becoming so... close to him, she decided that judging by the glorious passion they'd just shared, it'll be like taking a trip to paradise or... maybe even heaven, she continued her statement with, "and I wouldn't want it... or you any other way. And I still love hearing you say that you love me. Don't ever stop saying it, you hear me?"

"Okay. Okay. I won't. I've learned not to argue with you." He held up his hands defensively.

"And don't you forget it!" she said, Brooklyn twang resolute. She looked serious for a moment. "Thanks for tonight... I... we needed it." She paused briefly, then whispered in his ear, "I love you, Egon. Goodnight." She kissed him sweetly on the cheek. She went inside her apartment. But before she shut the door she decided to give him one last thrill for the evening. She pulled the left strap of her red satin dress down, exposing her shoulder completely. "Pleasant dreams," she purred, winked wickedly and quickly shut the door. She loved getting the last word in.

Janine locked the six locks on her door and kicked off her shoes, glad to have them off. She sighed aloud and did a little impromptu dance of triumph. "Ha! He's hooked now!" In the partial darkness she made her way to her bedroom, pausing briefly to pick up Egon's jacket. She held it close and smelled it, his scent still clung to the fabric Hmmm she sighed internally.

She switched on the bedside lamp and sat down at her vanity. She yawned and stretched. "I am tired..." she admitted to herself. She removed her make-up and jewellery and set the jewellery down on the vanity. She changed into her sexy pink nightie and climbed into bed. She laid Egon's jacket on the bed next to her. Although a poor substitute for the real thing she wanted to have at least one piece of him next to her throughout the night. She turned off the lamp. Next time... watch out Doctor, 'cause I won't let you stop me from showing you... no... giving you... the time of your life... yeah... next time... she thought dreamily as she curled up next to the jacket and drifted off to the most peaceful night's sleep she'd had in a long, long time.

Egon had heard her lock the door and he sighed as he leaned against it. He wiped the sweat from his brow, took off his glasses and ran a hand over his face. I can't believe I'm walking away from... that! he mused to himself, but knew it was the right thing to do. But next time might be a different story... Yes... next time he thought, raisingan eyebrow and he smiled a somewhat cheeky smile in a way that suggested that after tonight... after finding out how good, how right, how easy it was to kiss, hold and touch her ...he was actually looking forward to the moment when he'd inevitably be joining his heart, mind, soul, spirit... and body at the same time with Janine. He placed his spectacles back on and decided to walk back to the Firehouse. The cool night air will do me some good. So off he headed for the lonely walk home.
Egon finally reached the Firehouse. He was tired too and wanted desperately to go to bed. He wasn't use to keeping such late hours except on jobs or doing the occasional all-night equations or experiments. He groaned when he saw that a light was still on inside the old building. He reached into his pocket, produced his keys and opened the Firehouse door to find... Peter Venkman waiting inside making like he was a parent waiting for his offspring to get home after a night out.

Peter looked at his watch and grinned snidely. "Wow Spengs! It's after midnight. That's a record for you isn't it?"

Egon rolled his eyes. "Peter I'm really tired and..."

Peter smirked. "Wore you out did she?" He walked over to his old college buddy and pointed at his collar. He started singing off-key, "Lipstick on your collar told a tale on you..."

Egon looked at it and saw the burgundy smudge. He groaned as Peter continued, "Lipstick on your collar said that you and Janine are true..."

Egon went as red as Janine's hair. "What's the colour of red, Egon?" Peter asked rhetorically and looked as if he was about to burst into tears of laughter at seeing it. He answered the impertinent question for his pal, "It's the colour of your face!"

Peter knowing he was on a roll went on with his playful provocation and pointed out a few more things that made Egon feel even more self-conscious as he peered closer, "Well, well, well Spengs you have been busy tonight haven't you? Mouth covered in Big J's lipstick, a kiss mark on your cheek. Do I also detect some lipstick on your neck? And hand too?" Peter tisked five times. "My, my, my... Egon, you must have let your hair down tonight. What did she do? Spike your drink? Hypnotise you?"

"Peter I..." Egon began.

But Venkman ignored his protestation and continued with his insinuating comments, "Pfhh! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! She did loosen you up didn't she?..." He gestured at Egon's loose tie and partly unbuttoned shirt which Egon immediately and pointlessly straightened up.

Then Venkman asked, "And where's your jacket, Egon? Ohhh... I get it... you left it at Janine's apartment so you'd have an excuse to go over there again, huh? I didn't know you had it in you! You hound, you!"

"Let me explain Peter." Egon told Venkman the actual reason for the jacket's absence. He finished with, "so you see Peter there's a perfectly innocent explanation for not having it on."

"Riigghht," Peter drawled, sarcastically narrowing his emerald green eyes.

Egon irritated and growing tired of being on the defensive said to Peter in no uncertain terms, "Honestly Peter, if Janine and I had've become intimate tonight do you really think I'd be standing here talking to you?

Peter was a little surprised by that comment, what's more, he was impressed. "Point taken, Egon." Then he added while smirking, "But it still looks like you were halfway there."

Egon sighed, giving up. Venkman always did have a clever retort on his tongue which Egon could never seem to quite come up with a response to.

Peter yawned and stretched. "C'mon, Spengs. Uncle Pete's tired from waiting up for you to get your ass home." He switched off the lamp in the office and in the dim light headed towards the staircase that led up to the second level of the Firehouse. "You can tell me all the juicy details in the morning."

Egon rolled his eyes, not looking forward to that prospect, and followed Peter upstairs.

Egon decided to have a shower, a cold shower. The water was freezing, but he didn't notice. All he could think about was Janine. The way she looked and smelled tonight. Her eyes, her smile, her infectious laughter. Her kisses, her touch. Oh yeah! He had it bad! He shook his head to wake himself out of his reverie. He turned off the shower, dried himself and put on his nightclothes.

When Egon emerged from the bathroom and walked into the bunkroom he watched with amusement as Peter climbed into bed, not noticing the green, slimy blob under his pillow. Splat! was the sound they both heard as Pete's head hit the pillow.

"Yuck! Slimer!! I'm gonna get you for that!!" Venkman shouted and threw the slime covered pillow at the retreating Spud.

Slimer squealed and mumbled something incomprehensible as he vanished through the wall, leaving his "calling card" on it in the process.

Peter swore under his breath and ran his hands over his eyes and through his brown hair in a peeved off manner. "That little turnip!! He'll pay for that!!" He got up and yanked out a new pillow from the closet.

"Peter, really," Egon scolded. "It's just a pillow. And lower your voice or you'll wake Ray and Winston." He glanced over at them with concern. He'd already been ribbed enough since arriving home by Peter, he didn't want them waking up and doing it too.

"Sorry," Peter apologised and did as he was told. "But that's the fourth pillow this month. I'm gonna have to buy a whole new batch tomorrow. This is the last one," he said as he fluffed it up and threw it on the bed. He jumped under the covers.

Egon smiled affectionately in the half darkness at the antics he'd just witnessed. He too climbed into bed, removed his glasses and placed them on the nightstand.

Peter just couldn't help himself. He smirked and teased his favourite physicist one more time with, "Goodnight... Loverboy." He laughed childishly again.

Egon went beet red. One day I'll learn to control that he thought as his head hit the comfort of his pillow.

He gazed out the window, his thoughts returning to the woman he loves. He imagined her curvaceous, yet soft form sleeping peacefully. "Goodnight, Janine..." he whispered quietly, barely audibly as he drifted off to sleep. "My lady in red..."


This story was inspired by the song "The Lady in Red" written and performed by Chris De Burgh, 1986.

I don't own RGB (But I wish I did) so it is not meant to step on Columbia's toes.

Thank you to J. Michael Straczynski. You're my hero for writing the wonderful RGB episode "Janine, You've Changed."

Any similarities to anyone else's stories are merely coincidental. But I was inspired to write it by all the other great Fan Fiction I've been reading lately.

I live in Australia and unfortunately have never been to New York so I took certain liberties with locations. I got the name of the restaurant from my city's phone book because it sounded good. There's a fountain like the one described in my city so I used it to serve my purposes too.

Lastly thanks to my Mum for proofreading it for me.

I've enjoyed writing this story as I'm a huge fan of Janine Melnitz and Doctor Egon Spengler's great romance (sticking tongue out at picture of Harold Ramis) and wanted to write a story that focused solely on them.

Viva Janine and Egon's romance! Got it?!