Don't worry, this is a story about the kids. But first, the wedding!
"Mom, you're absolutely breathtaking," I gushed as my mother stared in the mirror.
She smiled at me in my red bridesmaid gown. "I just hope I look half as pretty as you do."
I snorted. "Thanks for the sentiment, but today, you're the star attraction."
Mom turned back to the mirror. The long white gown with its long white sleeves was simple but elegant. Lately, Mom had taken to growing out her hair, so now it about shoulder length. I squeezed her arm. "Egon won't know what hit him," I whispered.
Suddenly, there was a jaunty knock on the door. "All clear in there?" called a voice from the other side sarcastically.
Mom rolled her eyes. "Come in, Venkman."
Dr. Peter Venkman opened the door, the rascally smirk he habitually wore accompanied by a dashing grey suit. He whistled at the sight of Mom. "Damn, blondie. I'd marry you myself if Dana hadn't gotten to me first."
"Maybe you'll get lucky and they'll legalize polygamy, Pete," Mom snorted. "So, what's on your mind?"
Peter chuckled. "You got a wedding present. Anybody order a redheaded bridesmaid, size small?"
"Huh?" Mom asked confusedly. Then a short woman with bobbed red hair and round black glasses walked in behind Peter with a huge grin on her face.
"Janine!" Mom gasped. She all but ran across the room to hug her. "You came!"
The redheaded woman laughed, hugging Mom back. She had sort of a Brooklyn nasal drawl. "Of course I did, silly."
Mom looked over at Peter. "Well, I guess you won't be able to be my bridesmaid anymore," she joked.
"Oh, darn!" Peter said, mock disappointedly. "I'll just have to settle for performing the service then."
Mom turned back to Janine. "We have a dress for you, don't worry. I just knew that you would come. I almost thought you weren't, though...because of...you know." Mom looked awkward, almost guilty, for some reason.
"Listen," said Janine, putting a hand on Mom's shoulder. "Yes, I did use to like Egon. But now I've got Louis, plus a son of my own. All I want is for Egon is his happiness. Now you go marry him and make him the happiest man in the world for me, okay?"
Mom laughed with relief and pulled her into another hug. "Janine, you're a wonder! Thank you."
Peter cleared his throat. "Well it sounds like you girls have some catching up to do, and I have to go get ready for my big speech, so I'm just gonna bow out." He stepped out of the room, winking at Mom.
Janine glanced over at me. "So this is your daughter?"
"Yes, this is Alice," Mom introduced. "Alice, this is Janine Tully, our old secretary and a very good friend of mine."
I smiled and shook Janine's hand. "It's nice to meet you, Mrs. Tully...wait, Tully?" The last name caught me off guard. I paused. "Did you say you have a son?"
Janine nodded. "His name is Dexter. He's about your age. Do you know him?"
"Oh, yeah. I know him." I groaned, thinking of the boy who I went to school with. Even though I was with Jeremy now, Dexter still fawned over me. He just couldn't take a hint. "He's not here today, is he?"
"Yes, he's out in the audience sitting with his father," Janine replied.
"Louis is here, too?" Mom asked excitedly.
"Yes. Here, I have something for you." Janine started digging through her purse. She pulled out a large gold coin, plastic by the look of it. "It's a souvenir from the World's Fair in Wishing Meadow in 1964. It's my lucky coin."
"Oh, thank you," said Mom, taking the coin from her.
Janine nodded. "I gave the other one to Egon right before he went off to fight off Gozer."
Mom froze. "Oh," she whispered. "Well, don't worry. I'll give it back later."
"Keep it," said Janine, holding up her hands. "I've been holding onto that thing for way too long."
I got the feeling that Janine didn't mean she'd been holding on to the coin for too long. Maybe somewhere deep down, Janine still had feelings for Egon. I guess she had held onto the coin as a way to stay connected to him. Mom seemed to sense that too.
"Besides," Janine continued with a grin, "I got a third one at home."
Mom laughed a little. "I guess this covers something old and borrowed."
"And your dress is new," I added.
"Now you just need something blue," Janine remarked.
"Already covered." Mom held up her right hand. Sitting on her ring finger was a gold ring with a blue topaz stone. "It was my grandmother's," Mom explained. "It was willed to me after my parents died."
"Something from the past to help you embark on the future," I mused.
Mom turned and looked in the mirror once more. "Now you're ready," Janine whispered.
Suddenly, Wagner's "Wedding March" kicked up from the front hall. "That's your cue!" Janine grinned. "Go get him!"
When I was little, I had asked Mom about her wedding with my father. According to her, they had performed the ceremony in a small chapel. Mom had worn a poofy, prom dress number with a tutu skirt and spaghetti straps. A priest had performed the service, Ray had been best man, and Egon had walked Mom down the aisle. And of course, Mom had married Alexander Wilcox. My father.
Today would be completely different. The ceremony was taking place in the front hall of the firehouse. Mom's gown was simple and grown up. Janine was Mom's other bridesmaid and Winston was the best man. I was maid of honor, Peter was marrying the happy couple, Ray would be Mom's escort, and you know the groom.
"The way it should have been," my mom had said, smiling blissfully.
I was glad Mom had found someone. Ever since she and Egon had gotten together, she'd had a sparkle in her eye that I'd never seen before. And plus, Egon was a pretty cool guy. Mom had been right when she'd said he wasn't a big talker, but he was so nice. And he was really sweet to my mom. He definitely wasn't a douchebag like I feared. When I'd met him, he hadn't seemed like a jerk, but you really never know...
"Ready?" I heard Ray whisper to Mom. We were upstairs, waiting to go down.
"Definitely," she whispered back.
Janine dashed in, adjusting her red gown, identical to mine. She had pulled it on and slapped on some makeup at light's speed. "Alright, now let's have us a wedding," she declared.
The music cued up below. Janine gracefully stepped out and descended the staircase. I gulped and followed her.
The guests looked up at me and smiled. All of us "Next Generation Ghostbusters", as the "Originals" referred to Jeremy, Eddie, Graham, and I, were here. Jeremy was sitting with his mom Dana, and his half brother, Oscar Wallance. Jeremy winked at me. I blushed.
Eddie was sitting next to Ray's new girlfriend, Elaine Ferman. According to Mom, Ray and Elaine had been childhood friends. Graham was sitting with his mother, Laura and twelve year-old sister, Kendra. Egon had no family, his mother Katherine had died long ago, so he had invited his four parapsychology students from the university; Kylie, Eduardo, Garrett, and Roland. And of course, Dexter was there too, with a man who looked just him, only older. It had to be Louis.
Mom had no guests. "Everyone I love is right here," she had said.
At the front, Egon was standing in between Peter and Winston. Very pretty, he mouthed to me. I smiled at him and took my place by Janine.
The music trilled, and the room grew quiet. Everyone turned their eyes to the two figures descending the stairs.
Ray looked proud as a peacock as he escorted the bride to the alter. Mom looked absolutely gorgeous in her long, simple white gown. I thought it was perfect for Egon-simple, formal, but still wonderful.
Mom and Egon locked eyes the second she walked in the room. Mom looked like she was about to cry and explode with happiness at the same time. Egon looked absolutely content. But his eyes were sparkling.
Egon's student Eduardo was smirking. He elbowed Kylie. "I called that," he whispered to her. Kylie rolled her eyes.
Once they had reached the altar, Ray released Mom's arm and took his place behind Egon. Egon took Mom's hands, and they turned to Peter, expectantly.
"Friends and family," Peter began, "we gather here today to celebrate the joining of this man and this woman. Today you celebrate one of life's greatest adventures and give recognition to the worth of love, as you join together in vows of marriage."
I just knew what everyone was thinking: Ya done good, Venkman. Don't give him too much recognition though. I think he got that off the Internet.
"Egon Romulus Spengler," Peter asked, "do you take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?"
Egon looked at Mom, who was raising an eyebrow. Romulus? Mom mouthed, trying not to laugh.
Egon smirked. "I do."
Peter turned to Mom. "Jennifer Ruth Colby, do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?"
Mom took a deep breath, then opened her mouth. "I-"
"Ahahahahahaha!" A loud shriek issued from nowhere. "Huh?" I gasped.
Suddenly, a blue ghost streaked in, flying over all of our heads. Wind whipped around the room, scattering papers and stuff. Nobody screamed, because we were used to ghosts. But still, we were shocked.
"Peter! The packs!" Ray yelled. "C'mon, guys! Let's get it!"
Peter, Ray, Egon, Winston, and Mom leapt into action. They raced over to the Ectomobile and pulled out their proton packs. "Well, Jennifer," called Peter. "Ain't this always the way it goes?"
"Yeah," Mom shouted back. "Some spook comes in and crashes my wedding. Typical."
"Alice! Jeremy! Graham!" said Eddie. "Let's get our packs and-"
"No, wait," I cut him off. "Let them handle this one. One last bust."
The Ghostbusters geared up. "Alright, Winston," said Ray. "Go for it!"
Winston, being the only one with a clear shot at the phantom, fired. The ghost bounced out of the way, cackling like mad.
"Spengs!" Ray yelled.
Egon fired at the ghost. His stream latched around the ghost.
"You got it!" cheered Ray.
The ghost was struggling against Egon's stream. "Uh, it's slipping," Egon called worriedly.
"I got it!" Mom fired her wand at the specter. Together, she and Egon's streams held the ghost firm.
"Here comes the trap!" Peter called as he tossed it in. He stomped the pedal.
"Everybody shield your eyes!" Ray shouted. The guests looked away as the trap opened, and the ghost was sucked in.
Mom uncovered her eyes. She stared at the trap momentarily, then slowly turned to Egon and smiled. "Okay. Now I'm ready to say my vows."