GEMINI RISING
PART TWO

By Fritz Baugh


GBI Case File 0-1999-16/613
Elsewhere...Or Perhaps Elsewhen...
She staggered...like she'd been hit in the stomach...

Twelve houses of the Qizzonu...what was that?!

She wasn't surprised when she heard a new noise fading into her earshot--the distinct wheezing groan that signalled the arrival of one of the few beings who could comprehend, never mind reach, her solitary domicile.

She gathered her purple cloak as the blue shape solidified: an exotic chair, with various strange items attached to it. In the chair was sitting an old man, the eyes under his mop of unruly grey hair hidden by a red-tinted set of ether goggles.

"You've felt it, then?" she asked him.

"Even before every instrument I had went completely haywire." the old man responded. "As they said in the era of my childhood, there's a massive disturbance in the Force..."

She gestured...feeling weaker...Intelligo tempus...

She staggered again, as the man produced a device that looked vaguely like a Ghostbuster PKE meter, a blue and white case with flashing arms at the side. He muttered something unprintable as the screen faded to an error message...

Error: Delta Energy Level Exceeds Sensor Tolerance Parameter.

"Delphia?" he asked.

"There's...there's a massive tear developing in the timestream..." she finally said..."Something is trying to rip history apart...and..." her eyes narrowed. "The Ascension has been compromised..."

She gestured again, more frantically. "The disruption is centered on one of the crucial events...the twenty-first day of Gemini...in the Ninth Year of the Age of Aquarius..."

The old man nodded. "June 13, 1999."

June 13, 1999
Central Park
"...Must look forward to the new challenges in the coming new Millenium." His Honor, the Mayor of New York City, Winston Zeddemore, told the enraptured crowd.

He first assumed office in 1994; technically, he'd been the running mate of the 1993 mayoral candidate for the New York Independant Party that had defeated one-term Republican Arnie Lapinski, but one day after assuming office the mayor had up and quit, leaving Winston in charge of the Greatest City on Earth.

It had proven a good move.

Winston had proven a popular and effective leader, and skated to easy election in his own right in 1997. His sensible policies made him popular in the heavily historically Democratic city, and it was even rumored that President Clinton had offered him a Cabinet position. Winston had reportedly refused as to fulfill his obligations to New York, and was expected to easily win re-election in 2001 should he run.

Not far away sat Winston's mother, elderly but beaming with pride as always for her fifty-four year old son...

"And in conclusion..." Winston continued, flipping a page of his notes. He sported a mustache as he had save a brief period in the late Eighties, and his hair was still dark save for two white streaks. But he didn't get to finish the sentence...

There was a sudden howling of wind, and the skies suddenly began to twirl with an ominous indigo light.

Winston had seen enough dimensional vortices in his time to know one. He grabbed one of his aides. "Call the Ghostbusters--now!!!" he commanded.

It's not right...

Something has happened...

It's all wrong...

Romulus, where are you?

The ECTO-1A arrived at the scene, lights flashing and sirens wailing. The famous logo--a cartoon ghost holding up two fingers, covered with a red slash--adorned the doors and hood of the vehicle.

A rotund fellow who looked like he'd accidentally done a face plant into a tackle box got out of the driver's seat. He had dark, greasy hair and beady eyes--the nametag on his tan flight suit read "TATE" "Now there's something you don't see every day..."

A woman with short chestnut hair gave him a dirty look as she studied the device in her hand--a black box sporting two arms with blinking lights. Her jumpsuit's name tag read "DREW" "You recieving telemetry at Central, Nat?"

"Affirmative, Moira" a very young-sounding voice replied.

"Can you hear Franky fart from there, Little Dude?" the tall, lanky young man who got out of the passenger seat quipped. He was of African descent, and sported thick dreadlocks. "LOWELL" was the name on his jump suit.

"Only if he ate some of Doctor Stantz's chili again, Jack." Nat returned.

"Lowell, Nat, I say this from the bottom of my heart--f*** you both and the horses that got you into college..."

The fourth member of the team--a young woman of clearly Latino descent and an athletic build, was ignoring them as she opened the tail door of the ECTO-1A. "I don't know about the rest of you, but I want my proton pack." "DELGADO" was the name adorning her jumpsuit.

Franky Tate, Jack Lowell, Moira Drew, and Carla Delgado were the newest members of Ghostbusters--they'd been recruited a few years ago when, between advancing age and the preoccupations of their former comrades, Ray Stantz and Egon Spengler knew they would need help to continue the legacy of the world's first Professional Paranormal Investigators and Eliminators.

The four twentysomethings walked over to Mayor Zeddemore. Most of the rest of his entourage and audience had fled, but--as the foursome well knew--Winston had faced worse than this in his time, starting with Gozer the Gozarian fifteen years before.

"Hello adoring public!!!" Lowell called cheerfully to what few people were left. "Ghostbusters 2000, your spook smashers for the new millenium, have arrived!!!"

"I keep telling you, that name is gonna be so dated in eighteen months, tops..." Franky grumbled.

"Mister Zeddemore!" Moira called. "When did this start?"

"Pretty much ten seconds before I put the call into Janine..."

"I'm getting an increasing PK sine curve here, Nat. Has Doctor Spengler been contacted?" Moira asked.

"Affirmative" Nat replied. "He and Doctor Stantz should be arriving shortly..." There was a pause and then Nat broke in "I don't think that will be necessary, Sir...Moira's team has the situation well in hand..."

Winston rolled his eyes. "Louis?"

"Er...yes, Sir."

Franky and Lowell exchanged incredulous looks. "I wish he'd get it through his head he ain't a Ghostbuster..."

"He's even more dangerous with a pack than you are, Franky." Lowell agreed.

Franky flipped him off, then unholstered his neutrona wand.

"Spengler on-line here... a deeper voice broke in. "Moira, are you getting a five-seven-two curve in the third harmonic?"

"Can we stop yakking and blast something?" Franky puffed impatiently.

"Yes, Doctor..." Moira replied. "That's exactly the reading I'm getting here..."

"Hm...."

"I don't like that 'Hm...' Egon..." Winston said.

"The harmonic is consistant with delta wave emission..."

"Translate that into English for us, Doctor." Lowell asked. "Then put it into words with less than three syllables for Franky to understand."

"Delta waves are a property of chronal flux..."

"Time dihalation." Moira added simply.

"Great..." Carla quipped. "I can think of worse things than Micheal J. Fox and a Delorean popping out of that..."

The swirling maelstrom flared, and a blast of orange light shot to the ground, maybe a hundred yards away from them, splitting the ground open...

..And then the maelstrom was gone, as quickly as it had appeared.

Three neutrona wands were at the ready. Moira stepped forward first, PKE meter still blinking. "The PK surge has subsided...but I'm still picking up some residual readings...and...I think..."

"Think what, Fussypants?" Carla teased.

"It looks like there might be someone there..."

"Investigate..." Egon's voice prompted. "But be careful..."

Winston, ignoring his aide, grabbed a spare proton pack from the back of the ECTO-1A. "I think maybe this calls for an experience Ghostbusting hand, don't you?"

"The more the merrier, Yerhoner..." Lowell smirked.

It took a moment for the smoke around the blast point to clear...the four tan-clad Ghostbusters and the Mayor moved forward, cautiously but with determination...

"The PK is still fading... Nat commented. "Do you see something?"

Franky's eyes lit up. "Hello Nurse!!!"

"It's...a girl!" Carla inhaled.

"A girl?" Nat's voice came back.

"Female, Caucasian, I'd estimate 173 centimeters tall, with long blonde hair..." Moira reported dutifully. "She's clothed in...a rather eccentric ensemble with a light blue blouse and mini-skirt, with a pink vest and tie..."

"Babealicious if you ask me." Lowell whistled approvingly.

"And those big clunky earrings would make Mrs. Tully jealous..." Carla chuckled.

"Appears to be breathing...I'd estimate twenty-five years in age..."

"And at least a 36D..." Franky smirked.

Carla smacked him. "Keep your mind on your work, Tacklebox..."

"Aw, don't get jealous." Franky stuck out his tongue.

Carla smacked him again.

Winston stared at the girl...a creepy feeling grabbing the back of his neck...he'd dealt with odd things off and on for the last fifteen years, but this was the first time he could remember being struck with such a strong case of deja vu...

"Johnathan..." the woman called deliriously. "Romulus..."

"Nodus!!!" she exclaimed suddenly, sitting bolt upright.

"Just hold it right there, Madame Mysterious..." Lowell said firmly.

The woman regarded them with a gaze that unnerved them...those blue eyes posessed a distinct intensity. She stood up about as gracefully as possible, and studied them with a strangely familiar expression. "Ghostbusters..." she mumbled, pulling a small electronic device, looking vaguely like a pager, from her vest pocket and studying some readings. "June 13, 1999...that much has been successful..."

She looked at them again, giving them a look Winston couldn't help but realize reminded him of the same look Egon got when one of his molds went bad. "This is worse than we thought...the entire causal nexus has been compromised..."

" 'Causal nexus'? I'd say we'd found Doctor Spengler a date...if he ever dated, that is..." Franky grumbled. "Can I shoot her now?"

"Ernie Hudson?" the woman suddenly exclaimed, her gaze fixed squarely on Mayor Zeddemore.

"I'm afraid you have me confused for someone else..." Winston replied to the comment.

"The resemblance is astounding..." the woman remarked. "I take it then...you are Winston Zeddemore?"

"You have me at a disadvantage..."

"Complete integrity breakdown..." she started mumbling to herself again. "Replacement of personalities with semi-fictionalized counterparts..."

"Please let me shoot her now." Franky pleaded. "I don't care how hot she is--this is getting annoying..."

"Mister Zeddemore--I need to talk to Professor Egon Spengler." she said firmly. "It is a matter of utmost importance..."

" "Professor'?" Moira repeated with bemusement.

"Nat, tell Egon he's about to have company..." Winston said after a few seconds.

"I look forward to it, Winston." Egon himself replied. The woman's expression deepened.

"Looks like you get a meeting with Doctor S, Baby." Lowell grinned. "Though I warn you, I hear from the grapevine he's a tough nut to crack...Miss..."

"For now..." the woman answered, pulling out a pair of red eyeglasses from her vest pocket. "Call me Pollux..."

Ghostbusters Headquarters
One Hour Later
The ECTO-1A and a mayoral limosine approached the corner of Varrick and Moore; Moira thought for sure she heard the mysterious Pollux exhale with relief when the former firehouse of the Hook and Ladder Number Eight came into view.

Pollux cocked an eyebrow in a conspicously familiar manner when she noticed Moira noticing. "I was afraid for a moment it wouldn't be there..."

And was shocked as they drove right past it.

"Isn't that...your headquarters?" she asked.

"That old dump?" Lowell replied. "Babe, Ghostbusters outgrew that place years ago--we got a real nice place now."

After a drive, they reached an ornate building at Thirtieth Street and Seventh Avenue. A large sign reading "Ghostbusters International" identified the complex.

The ECTO-1A pulled into position in the garage. An angry looking woman with a short red bobbed haircut scowled at them as they got out of the car.

Moira was certain of what she heard this time: Pollux inhaled sharply.

"...I've already got five calls from the TV stations and the Mayor's staff tryin' to find out what was going on, and on top of that..." the older woman started to complain with a distinct Brooklyn accent.

"Don't let the Mayoral staff get your dander up, Janine..." Mayor Zeddemore said with some amusement as he walked into the garage behind the Ghostbusters. "I think I can keep them in line..."

Pollux shook her head, and looked at her strange device. . "Not just any Annie Potts incarnation, that one..."

A young boy no older than twelve came up to Moira and Lowell. He had spiky brown hair atop a large forehead, and was wearing a flight suit that matched theirs. "CARSON" was the name on the chest patch.

"This is the anomaly?" he finally asked.

"That's her, Nat." Lowell replied, pulling out and lighting a suspicious looking cigarette. "Hot enough to put you through puberty all at once, huh?"

Nat Carson gulped and blushed.

Janine was hugging her old friend. "Well, since it's you all is forgiven. Not too often Hizzoner the Lord High Mayor Zeddemore comes to visit all the little people he forgot about on his way up."

"You're looking good, Janine." Winston replied.

"I hate to cut off the reunion, Mr. Zeddemore, but it's becoming more imperative by the moment that I..." Pollux interrupted.

"Just hold yer damn horses, Missy, I..." Janine turned to face the rude newcomer, and her voice trailed off as she saw the tall, blonde woman for the first time.

They stared at each other silently for thirty seconds.

Pollux broke the silence, a strangely...contrite tone in her voice. "I..apologize for my abruptness, M..." she bit her lip to stop herself. "Miss Melnitz. But..."

"Miss Melnitz? Who's Miss Melnitz?" Franky asked, picking his nose with a screwdriver.

Carla elbowed him in the gut. "You never study...'Melnitz' was Mrs. Tully's maiden name..."

Janine looked--and truth, felt--slightly embarrassed at the revelation.

Pollux suddenly looked ready to re-experience her most recent meal in reverse. "Bunsen's Burner, this is worse than I ever imagined..."

"Now what is that supposed to mean?" Janine asked, eyes narrowing.

"You're married to Louis Tully?"

"Why wouldn't I be?"

Pollux took her eyeglasses off and rubbed her eyes, her temple pinched in what looked an awful lot like pain. "You're not married to Professor Spengler."

" 'Professor' Spengler? You mean..." Janine stopped, a blush coming into her cheeks. "Why in the world would I be married to Egon Spengler?"

There was a round of laughter among the younger Ghostbusters.

"I can't imagine Doctor Spengler married to anybody..." Franky brayed. "That guy has a broom lodged so far up his ass he could sweep the floor with his nosehair."

"Drop dead, Tate!" Janine shouted. "I don't know who you are, Miss Tall, Blonde, and Leggy, but you have a lot of gall to come in here and ask a bunch of stupid questions like that!!! I aughta flatten you right there!!!"

"Janine, this is our case..." Winston went over to her, trying to calm her down.

"I don't have to stay here and listen to this abuse! I'm taking a coffee break, and if you don't like it you can cram it up your asses!!!" Janine finished, slamming the door to the break room behind her as she stormed off.

The younger Ghostbusters were all flabbergasted.

"Daaaaaaaaamn..." Lowell remarked.

"If I didn't know better, I'd swear a nerve was touched." Moira mused.

"It was." Mayor Zeddemore replied after a pause. He looked at Pollux. "But how did you know anything about that?"

"There's something to that scene?" Carla gasped. "But I thought she and Mr. Tully have been hitched for almost five years..."

"You aughta have seen them slobbering all over each other in the break room the other day. Old people making out--it was gross." Franky pantomimed gagging.

Winston shook his head. "When Ghostbusters first started, Janine had a thing for Egon. Bad. But when we broke up they lost track of each other...and he just plain ignored her when we got back together. Louis didn't..." he looked at the blonde woman. "But how did you know about that? It's not exactly common knowledge--I thought by now pretty much only the five of us knew about that?"

Pollux looked at him, intense eyes grave. "You might say, Mister Zeddemore, that that knowledge is encoded into the fiber of my being. I need to see Egon Spengler. Now."

"Easily arranged." A deep voice cut into the chatter.

Pollux inhaled deeply before turning to face the speaker, like she needed to prepare herself.

Dr. Egon Spengler was the brain behind the founding of Ghostbusters Inc. Older than Winston Zeddemore by a year, the fifty-four year old physicist was the oldest of the original Ghostbusters; his age showed in the greying of his thick dark hair, and a puffiness to his formerly sharp features that wasn't there in his youth. He adjusted his glasses as he studied the new arrival to GBI headquarters.

Beside him was the heart of the Ghostbusters, Dr. Ray Stantz. Only three years and two weeks away from his fiftieth birthday, his dark hair was greying also. He regarded the newcomer with wide eyes lacking the suspicion in Egon's intense gaze.

Neither was dressed in Ghostbusters uniform, though both sported GBI ID badges. Egon was wearing a suit and tie, Ray was in a t-shirt and bomber jacket.

"Dead ringers for Harold Ramis and Dan Aykroyd." Pollux shook her head. "At least that detail has been consistant."

"I'm Dr. Ray Stantz, Ghostbusters International, and this is..."

"If you please, Dr. Stantz, I already know who the two of your are. Or at least who you're supposed to be. For the moment, the name Pollux will have to suffice for me." the mysterious woman replied.

"Egon?' Ray asked his old friend. Only someone who knew Egon as well as Ray did would notice the man seemed abnormally absorbed even by his standards.

"Very well then." Egon replied after a moment. "The gate you appeared out of appeared to match the theoretical properties of a temporal distortion..."

"Indeed it was, Prof...Doctor Spengler." Pollux answered. "If you aren't familliar with Bell's Theorem of alternate dimensions I will be quite troubled..."

"Of course. It's the theorem that with each instant a new number of parallel dimensions are created, depending on the choices made by the inhabitants of the timeline."

"Can lead to some very disturbing alternative worlds." Ray added. "Like there are postulated dimensions where the Nazis won World War II..."

Unnoticed by the others, Janine appeared at the edge of the conversation. Right beside her was Louis Tully, her husband of five years, a man who embodied just about every cliche of "nerd".

"I don't understand why..." he started to drone quietly.

"Then leave." she bit back at him. "Right now I really don't care..."

"Infinite worlds branching from infinte timelines." Pollux continued. "Though where I come from it's not a theory--it's scientific fact. Where I came from, Doctor Spengler, you helped prove that."

Egon looked at her. "So what are you suggesting? That you're from the future? Or native to some parallel timeline?"

"At the moment, Professor, I'm not completely sure..."

"Is anyone else getting really bored right now?" Franky muttered under his breath.

"I was sent here from a time zone in the 21st Century." Pollux explained. "A massive temporal disturbance had been detected on this date, June 13, 1999. For several reasons, my partner and I were chosen to traverse the timeline to this date."

"When I arrived, I found myself in a world that doesn't match the history books--or my own personal recollections. Worse, I have no concrete inkling as to the fate of my partner, code name 'Romulus'."

Ray stroked his chin. "Interesting choices. Names of twins from Greek mythology, though they don't match..."

Pollux did manage a slight smirk. "Well, I didn't want to be Remus, he didn't want to be Helen or Castor, and niether of us wanted to have to keep spelling Clymenestra..."

Ray about choked. Egon found himself smirking in a curious and unbidden echo of the mysterious stranger.

At the edge of the conversation, a chill went down Janine's spine...at how strangely similar Egon and Pollux's smirks seemed.

Just then the PKE meter on Moira's belt began to flash. The strange device Pollux had used earlier began to beep. "More temporal flux?" Moira said as she studied her meter.

"Yes..." Pollux answered simply, and she reached into her collar to produce a glowing crystal attached to a necklace.

"Fascinating..." Egon said.

"It's a piece of quartz that was charged with temporal energy during a lab accident." Pollux explained. "It helps anchor me to this zone, and would theoretically have provided insulation against the Blinovich Limitation Effect. The glow means that either the scientist who accidentally created it or Lady Delphia are trying to contact me..." She pushed a few buttons on the device she carried.

A shimmering image appeared, fading in and out. A woman, wearing a purple and white outfit, her brown hair cut severely short...Ray was reminded ever so slightly of the human form Gozer the Gozarian had adopted, though without the aura of menace.

"Lady Delphia!" Pollux called out.

"I can't...maintain this link for long, Lady Pollux..." the projection said. "The situation is graver than we realized..."

"Do you know what happened to Romulus?" Pollux asked.

"He is safe, for the moment..." Delphia answered. "Professor Ulforce is contacting him as I am you...the causal nexus has not only been compromised, it's unravelling...Ulforce and I are trying to hold the timeline together, but it's been bifurcated into two imperfect causalities...Romulus is in the other one..."

"At least he's safe." Pollux replied. "What can be done?"

"The nexus of the disturbance will exist in both realities...you must find it..."

"Nodus." Pollux said. "When I first appeared here, I was thinking of Nodus..."

"Nodus was the name of a man known to your parents, Lady Pollux...one around whom more than one mystery and anomaly swirled...perhaps he is the key. We know the significance of this day...the Gemini Twins must be found and reunited, the Five Who Are One must stand together...or all is lost..."

Pollux looked around the room. "Where is Doctor Venkman?"

Ray exhaled and rolled his eyes. "He thinks he's too good to be associated with us now. He does 'important' stuff, and doesn't like to be reminded that he was once a Ghostbuster..."

"I will use...what power I can send to bring him to you, Lady Pollux." Delphia said, strain beginning to show on her face. "You must take the Five Who Are One, and find Nodus..."

There was a blinding flash of white light.

Delphia was gone.

Sitting on the floor was a man with thinning hair, a tacky jacket, and a cel phone clutched in his hand. "Hello? Helloooo?"

"Bill Murray." Pollux shook her head. "The set is complete..."

The man on the floor looked around. He jumped up and lunged for Egon, his eyes suddenly filled with rage. "What the hell have you done to me now, Spengler?"

"I did not do anything." Egon replied acidly.

"Kidnapping me with you latest weird science gizmo doesn't count as 'doing something' you stuck up prick?!"

"He did not 'kidnap' you, Doctor Venkman..." Pollux interjected sternly. "If you must manifest irrational anger, direct it at me."

The man turned and looked at her, the rage melting from his face. A new expression, a cheerful grin, appeared. "Well why didn't you just say so? I'm Peter Venkman. Doctor Peter Venkman. The very rich and talented Peter Venkman..."

"The very married Peter Venkman." Winston reminded him.

"I don't know what you're implying, Yeronner..." Venkman replied. "He kidnap you too?"

"We don't have time for this, Doctor Venkman." Pollux said.

"That woman said the temporal causality nexus has been bifurcated?" Egon mused.

"Who was that Delphia woman?" Nat asked. "And who is 'Professor Ulforce'?"

"And what was that stuff about the Gemini Twins and Five Who Are One?" Ray asked.

"It answers one question: I haven't been deposited into some parallel dimension--the situation is far more grave." Pollux answered.

"Please, be sure to use small words for Franky's sake..." Lowell chimed in.

"This isn't a parallel timeline--the one I came from is being torn apart. Lady Delphia and Professor Ulforce are the most powerful chronomancers known; but all her magic and his Etheric science have been able to do is hold the breakdown at two timelines. For the moment."

"Spengler, if you dated I'd say I finally found you a woman..." Venkman rolled his eyes.

"I said the same thing..." Franky noted.

Niether of them noticed Janine, at the doorway, looking at them with murder in her eyes.

"Think of the progression of time like a DNA helix..." Pollux explained. "The helix is comprised of thousands of molecules arranged into two strands. What has basically happened here is that the two strands are unravelling...many of the events that led to the future I know have been distilled into two imperfect sets of events."

"The damaged timestream is trying to compensate for the loss--it's filling events with stopgaps and both events and people unheard of in the healthy timeline, while ones that were crucial to the flow of proper history have been displaced to one or the other, or even lost entirely."

"This is beginning to make my head all thumpy..." Lowell cracked.

"But you still haven't told us who these Gemini Twins are...or the Five Who Are One..." Ray noted.

"The Five Who Are One are the five beings who were crucial to the defeat of the Zodiac Lords in 1991." Pollux said. "And in the raising of the Gemini Twins."

Pollux looked at them, and then to where Janine was standing. "Egon Spengler, Janine Melnitz, Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz, and Winston Zeddemore. The five of you."

"We didn't defeat any Zodiac Lords in 1991..." Ray protested.

"Mrs. Tully? Going on busts?" Carla mused out loud, amazed at the thought.

"And the Gemini Twins?" Egon asked.

Pollux exhaled before answering. "The Gemini Twins were raised in the care of the Five Who Are One. In the history as it is written in my time, they were born today. June 13, 1999." She looked at Egon then Janine. "Their birth names are Johnathan Christopher and Eden Marie Spengler, the twin children of two of the Five: Professor Egon Spengler and his wife, the former Janine Melnitz."

Janine gasped. Egon stiffened noticeably. Louis, still at the edge of the crowd, looked like he wanted to vomit.

"What I believe is this...something happened to the Spengler Twins, and it concerns a man called Nodus. Whatever happened, it began the unravelling of the causal nexus of the true timeline, it's splitting into two imperfect sets of events. We need to find Nodus, restore the Spengler Twins, and set things right."

"Right?" Janine asked, moving closer.

"This is nuts..." Venkman grumbled. "I can take a lot of bullshit from leggy blondes, but this is really past the line..."

"You're saying this world is all wrong?" Ray asked. "So what are we 'supposed' to be..."

"You, Doctor Stantz, are married with a son, Eric. Mister Zeddemore is not the mayor...but he is also married, and has a daughter, Charlene. Both of you run Ghostbusters with Egon. Doctor Venkman is married to Dana Barrett, and raises not only her son Oscar, but a child of their own, Jessica. He is still involved with Ghostbusters, but spends a lot of his time in Hollywood as an agent."

"And we...Egon and I..." Janine said, eyes starting to tear up.

"What about me?" Louis said quietly.

Pollux didn't look at him. "You and Miss Melnitz did get married. Briefly. But both of you came to your senses and divorced."

Egon's eyebrow shot up.

"And what about us?" Lowell finally asked.

"Ghostbusters 2000 is a complete temporal oddity." Pollux asked.

"We don't exist?" Franky huffed.

"I didn't say that." Pollux replied. "But the Ghostbusters in the year 1999 are a completely different group. Dr. Roland Jackson, Eduardo Rivera, Kylie Griffin, and Garrett Miller."

"I've had enough of this..." Venkman shouted. "I'm calling a cab, getting out of here, and be glad if I don't sue..."

"The true versions of you and Professor Spengler went through their own period of bitterness." Pollux said. "But by now in the real timeline you've gotten past it. You were best man at his wedding. Were in the waiting room when his children were born."

Venkman's shoulders fell. "Spengs, you don't think any of this is true, do you?"

"There is no logical evidence." Egon replied. After a pause, he added. "But I also think she speaks the truth."

"What...what makes you say that?" Ray asked, as flabbergasted as any of them.

"It's not in my normal nature, but..." Egon replied, clearly uncomfortable. "I feel the truth."

" 'Search your feelings...' " Nat quipped. Carla giggled.

"Learning when to feel, I've been told, is one of the hard-won prizes your whole self has attained..." Pollux said enigmatically.

"So where to we go from here?" Lowell asked.

"First we need to find out everything we can about this man 'Nodus'..." Egon replied, trying to surpress a strange feeling of gratitude at Pollux's statement.

To Be Continued
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