Lyn didn’t weep. Ever. She was headstrong and proud, nonconformist and hardly feminine except in her looks, which were model-like, sharp. She didn’t weep, or giggle, or pine.
She folded over Charlie’s lifeless body and sobbed.
Lyn took him into her arms. It didn’t look awkward, given their similar heights, and she didn’t struggle, given her supernatural strength. She was a werethylacine (not a werewolf, thank you) and he a hunter of the supernatural, but her family did the same, and despite her curse she hunted as well.
Their last hunt overpowered them; hunters became prey. Their plan had failed – they destroyed their target, but Charlie had sacrificed himself. “Idiot!” Lyn had cried. She never cried.
But for one who never cried, tears splashed onto Charlie’s bloody chest.
“Master?” A wispy form slipped from Lyn’s perfume bottle.
Lyn looked up, despite wanting to hide her weakness. “Marina,” she whispered. “Marina, please, please, bring him back. I wish for Charlie Mane to come back to life. Please.”
The genie hesitated. The request wasn’t impossible, but this was wish two. Wish two after years of Lyn refusing to wish because they’d become friends. One more and the cosmos would tear them apart. Forever. She couldn’t refuse a wish. She could misinterpret it deliberately, her favorite pastime for masters past. But not for Faolyn.
Marina nodded, clapped her hands. That was it.
Charlie coughed and sat up.
Lyn’s arms flung around him. Any other time, she would have punched him, lectured him for worrying her, then called him an idiot for dying.
He met her with silence. When it became unbearable – the silence, the stillness – Lyn drew back. Charlie stared at her, wide-eyed. They dealt with enough weirdness; Lyn knew the healing worked, nothing possessed him. He should have been normal.
“Charlie, Charlie you were dead. Marina brought you back, and-”
She had expected many answers – not that one.
“You’ll be fine.” She hugged him tight again.
He didn’t return the gesture. After months of playful nights, heated discussions, gentle whispers, and finally the confessions of “I love you” just before this mission, Lyn felt cold from his apathy. “Charlie, I lo-”
“It’s all wrong,” he whispered, pushing her back.
“We can fix it. Whatever went wrong, we know enough-”
“No, Lyn. I’m fine.” He locked eyes with her, but quickly tore his gaze away, eyebrows furrowing. He swallowed hard, gagging on it as if he’d taken a sip of soured beer. “Lyn…” He hesitated, stumbled over a word, steeled himself. He finally looked into her eyes again, but he had a hard glint in his own. “Lyn, I don’t love you.”
Lyn felt her heart shatter. Her heart didn’t break. It just didn’t.
“Love potions… do not work after death, master.”
The words hit her like cold water. “What… did you say, Marina?”
“I gave Charlie love potion.”
He had never truly loved her.
Lyn didn’t weep, but she did. And she should have never fallen in love, but she did.