That day, when her lover's mother screamed at Callisto for being the beggar girl that killed her son's promising future, she couldn't help but agree. That man had always told her that she didn't have to listen to his parents and would laugh, saying that the more pissed they got, the more entertaining it was to him.
His parents had never cared about him when he was growing up, so getting a rise out of them was a highlight of his day. But as Callisto stared at the closed casket, she wondered if he would be alive if she had just stayed away from him like they had told her to.
Callisto's life was meaningless, her only use being the only survivor of an international scheme, making her an important key witness in the eyes of the government. But she was treated like an anomaly, stuck in a facility for years to make her 'human'. Days seemed to blend in a gray sludge, an empty life with no meaning.
Even after she was allowed to roam free in the real world, none of it mattered to her. She was like a marionette, her strings perfectly orchestrated to be the ideal person, endless information shoved down her throat and stored in her brain for her to recite and perform.
Every action, every breath, crafted by someone else for her to do. Even her name, Callisto, was given to her by the government workers later in life. It was the name of a dead, useless moon revolving around a much more important planet.
Desolate. Lifeless. A world with no reason to exist.
That was her life.
That was until Callisto met him.
He was so rude. So blunt. He didn't care what people said about him or if he offended them. And he was ruthless, a known prosecutor with a sharp tongue and a sharper jawline.
She would have never met him if she didn't look into the hobby store out of curiosity, meeting his gaze from across the glass wall. And just like that, she was taken by him. He was nothing like she thought he would be.
People always viewed Callisto as an oddity, even people she had just met. There was something incomplete about her that unnerved people, driving away the people who came around for the pretty face.
But he treated her like he treated everyone else.
She doesn't exactly remember when they went from acquaintances to lovers, but she does remember every teasing smile, every surprise date, despite his busy schedule.
The late nights in watching superhero movies she didn't care about, but watched anyways, because she loved the glint in his eyes as he watched the fighting scenes, his arm squeezing around her waist a little every time an exciting action sequence was happening. The way he acted like a little boy when he was too sleepy, and the immediate embarrassment that flushed through his face once he realized that she was watching him.
He didn't pity her or treat her like a freak, even when she disclosed some details about her unfortunate past. Callisto didn't know what he saw in her. She came with way too much baggage for a man who could get pretty much any girl he wanted.
Maybe because they were both outcasts, and related on a level that most people wouldn't get. Or maybe he wanted a unique trophy to tout around at banquets, and people marveling at her odd-colored eyes and leucistic mutation were worth the effort.
If she ever voiced that worry, he would have probably flicked her cheek and said, "Baby, have you seen me? No one needs to look at you when I'm right here you know. Aha!" And then wrestle her to the floor to litter her neck with kisses.
People said he was the devil, a soulless sociopath that cared only for his ambitions, willing to step on anything to get what he wanted. And they weren't too wrong.
But his ambitions were never evil, and he never tried to hide his wrongdoings, like everyone else who pretended to be righteous. He was fine with being the villain of everyone's story, the role that was difficult to achieve, necessary to life, and hated by the masses regardless of what he did.
Blindingly charismatic. Surprisingly straightforward. Overly confident. The love of her life.
Apparently, he was quite the delinquent in his school years, and the rebellious attitude was still there through adulthood, though faded. She thought it was charming, but the authorities that chased after them for trespassing and lighting fireworks might think otherwise.
He was always a bit of a pyromaniac, but to think he would die in a fire was a tragic irony. And he willingly ran back into the fire for her, throwing her out of the way before the building gave in on his body.
She could only scream as the flames engulf him, the tears evaporating off his face before reaching his shaky smile, the one he gave when he didn't want her to worry.
He had more people at the funeral than she expected. She only recognized his parents, who were barely in his life, and a few coworkers that would sometimes crash on his couch after a long night of drinking.
Callisto knew that a lot of people were glad to see him gone. He was always making a riot wherever he was, and it made him a lot of enemies, especially with how much he argued with higher-ups. In fact, she would go as far as to say the fire was foul play. But it didn't matter now, did it?
What did matter now was that everyone thought it was her fault that he had died, including herself. If she was faster, or more perceptive, this wouldn't have happened.
"If he had just listened to me and met with the girl from the Sinclairs, he would have been fine," his mother balled, saying it just loud enough for her to hear.
"To think he would be enraptured by some poor girl with a suspicious background." Callisto didn't respond, unable to register anything as she stared down his portrait, hoping it would come to life.
His mother, irritated with her attitude, marched up and slapped her across the face. But she was so rigid that her face hardly moved, the red imprint on her cheek feeling like a gust of wind compared to everything that has happened to her.
"It's all your fault! You ruined his life!" She shook Callisto, and the girl let herself be shaken.
She wished she could cry, but she didn't know how. The world became muted, and the fall afternoon felt like a dead winter night.
It was like time had paused. But as Callisto looked around and saw the leaves still in the air and the funeral-goers posed like statues, she realized it wasn't just her imagination.
If that didn't convince her, the strange entity in the sky probably confirmed some sort of supernatural intervention.
A dark figure floated above the casket, seemingly staring straight at her. Callisto thought that she could be seeing the Grim Reaper themselves until the figure spoke through the wind, a grating sound that hurt her ears.
"Would you like to save this man?"
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