Haru would look at him, “Look at us, I’m a demon, you’re a mortal, our lives are drastically different, I live every moment knowing it won’t be my last, you live every moment like it could be, we could never be normal, I waited to see if maybe we could, but you deserve better, normal, I can never be that.” His voice was filled with a haunting loneliness, he knew he would be alone, even in Rhydin the consciousness of each person would someday die, he didn’t know where in the cycle he sat, but there was no natural end for him, he wished there was, but it was impossible.
He stopped searching after that, throwing himself at bettering his world, protecting those weaker than himself, using his talents to eliminate those who would take advantage of kids like who he once was, and using their wealth to give those kids a chance.
The cambion himself lived modestly, a chunk of his funds from merchandise and fame the sports provided going right back into it, expanding it for handsome donations each season to those in need, bringing people up, instead of trying to rise over them, he didn’t need that, he wanted change, and he had an eternity to get it.
Maybe that is why it came to his surprise, when a few years later, a hand brushed his while he worked, his fundraiser and by one of the volunteers, fighting for the same cause, the action itself not a shock, but what came after. One brushed hand turned into a conversation, one conversation became weeks of talking on the phone before bed, eventually working up the courage to ask for a date, the girl blinking, asking if that wasn’t what they were already doing, a laugh left his lips, a genuine laugh on his lips, the first in years, since he accepted his fate was lonely. Those dates became nights together without a phone line connecting them, laying side by side, resting their foreheads together and gently holding each other, this was love.
Eventually came the day, the inevitable talk they would have, a talk that Haru had come to terms with, if she chose to stay, they would live the rest of her life together, before the loneliness would take hold again, “Look at us Bex, we can never be normal, I will outlive you, watch you grow old and die, mourn your loss, before you’re even gone.
Bex, her twinkling laugh piercing his sentence, sending butterflies through his stomach, would step forward, resting soft hands on his cheeks, “My dear Haru, I’ll come back, this is Rhydin, people are reborn and revived every day, you’re an incredible caster, even if I die, you can make it so my soul finds you, our forever will not be the same as some, but we will live hundreds of lifetimes, you can woo me every time I return, tell me about our pasts, let us make fresh memories every time. If I had to choose… I’d choose to grow old in your arms, and know when I next awoke I would be young, and back safely in your arms. Maybe it’s selfish, we will have pain, but at least we won’t be alone.”
Those words rang in his ears, the promise they truly could have that forever, even as she snuggled into his chest, the burning in his heart, his eyes staring at her, his lips resting on the top of her head, his fingers slowly moving up to cup her cheek, tilting it up to look at him, “I didn’t know if you would stay…” his voice was quiet, even, “I didn’t prepare for this, perhaps I am greedy for wanting you at my side forever, even knowing that binds you to never truly be at peace, but I will ask, only once, Bex, will you stay by my side, not because I need you, but because I want you, and I want you to choose me.” The question tossing out the symbolism of religion with all the same meaning.
“It was my idea silly,” her voice soft, “It would be an honour to fall for you over and over, to know that whatever heartbreak rests in my future, You’re waiting on the other side.”
The ceremony was simple, Bex dressed in a simple red gown, Haru in a basic black suit, stereotypical but it fit, his tail was combed, his horns were sanded smooth and hit with a polish, his eyes with a gentle eyeliner, he wanted to look good beside his bride, the woman standing as radiant as the sun, gorgeous as the moon. Vows were exchanged, and a small incantation with the prepared materials sealed the deal, she would always find him.
The life of the pair was a simple one, road trips taken, Haru roaring out the cheesiest love songs the radio would play, serenading the beauty at his side, voice going quiet when she started to sing along, starstruck every moment, every second falling more in love.
Family dinners and questions on if they would be welcoming another to their little family, secrets kept every time they artfully dodged the question, yet going home and wondering the same. Bex had always known Haru wanted to be a father, and give his children a life he never had, Haru knew she wanted to someday be a mother, but didn’t know if he could be a father. Fate eventually taking the fate of the two into her own hands, and soon, they were answering that question with soons and dates, crib set up in the nursery, diapers on the shelves, doctors appointments and kissed baby bumps, the gentle strum of a guitar and a softly sang lullaby, naps on the couch and walks through the parks.
The peace didn’t last, soon replaced by screams of pain in a cramped hospital, they had gone on one last trip before their son was due, and he had chosen to come early, screams were replaced by the wail of a baby, held in their arms, tired parents trying to calm little Jun, pets trying to investigate the loud crying creature, even when most unwelcome, wails turned to sobs, sobs turned to snark, snark became a kind young man with the future a choice to make, as had his father before him, not alone.
And then there were two, first were the tears from their baby leaving the nest, then the changes, her face showing lines where there had been none, her body weakening, to Haru it felt like just a moment, instead of the decades, his wife if anything looking more radiant with each passing year, until the moment she was gone. He screamed, he screamed and sobbed for days holding her to his chest, only now realizing how withered and frail she had become, the strong radiant woman was gone, in her place an empty shell.
The funeral was quiet, the man still appearing young, his son at his side, they spoke of her beauty and kindness, of the day they met, and how someday she would come back, promising this wouldn’t be goodbye, even if it seemed that way in the moment, they had made a promise… right? A small kiss was rested on a small rose, before he knelt and let it fall into the hole his love now laid.
Decades again passed, Haru never aging a day, red eyes constantly searching, his hands going through the motions, fundraisers held, people made stronger, speeches made, their wedding bands on a chain around his neck, his family at his side.
His hands were going through donations for a local food drive, when once more, a hand brushed his, eyes looking up as his breath caught in his throat, the person facing his wasn’t the woman he loved, not physically, but somewhere deeper he could feel it, this was his Bex, this man before him was his Bex, it didn’t matter what form they took, Bex had said she would find him, and each generation without fail, their hands would brush, the death leading to the hope for another fateful meeting, until the day she didn’t come back, he could feel it, the world dying, there was no way for them to be a family again, their son had been killed, a single well placed bullet ending his life.
His eyes were filled with tears as once more he screamed, screamed like the first day he lost her, the flames he had such good control of rippling from him in chaotic waves. They burned everything they touched. The furthest reaches leaving scarred earth, even to his own body, the world burned to ashes and dust, the demon earning his peace.
“Haru?” The familiar voice was kind, his hair brushed from his face before he even opened his eyes, Bex, “Baby… why are you crying?” her hands were warm, soft, and real, he could feel the pressure on his cheeks where her palms sat, “Was it the dream about losing me again? See I’m ok… I’m not going anywhere.”
His eyes open weakly, and he stares at her, memories flooding back, they had already found a way, without making her like him they could have eternity, his fingers tracing the swell of her lips, “I love you…” the only words whispered as she closed her eyes, leaning into his touch.
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