The Price of Immortality
I do not usually write fiction, but here is a short story that takes place shortly before I became a capsuleer.
It was dark out, but a nearby streetlight delineated her silhouette in muted hues. We had been talking for a while. She drew closer to me, gazing up at me. Her eyes shone softly. “I have to go soon,” I said. “Aww,” she said, biting her lip. She reached for my hand. The touch was electrifying.
“Sage, I, uh…”
She hesitated, and looked down for a moment.
“You…?” I inquired, prompting her to continue.
“I think you know…”
She was staring deep into my eyes again, her eyes pleading for understanding.
“Yes, I know.”
My fingers brushed her cheek, warm and soft. She blushed, perceptibly delighted by the touch. She pushed up to me.
“And?”, she half-whispered, her arms wrapped around me. I sighed as she embraced me. She wasn’t understanding what I felt. Her face drew nearer, expectant.
“I can’t…you know that. I’m sorry.”
Her face fell.
I slowly shook my head. It couldn’t be. I tried to look away from her eyes. They were begging for something I couldn’t give. My mind ran through all the possible ways it could work. But it wouldn’t. I knew that. I wanted to say yes. But no…
“Please? We could make it work…”
I sadly shook my head again and tried to pull away. She clung to me, unwilling to let go. I hugged her tightly, closing my eyes and breathing in the scent of her jasmine in her hair.
“I’m sorry…” I whispered.
After holding her for a minute, I gently pulled away. She didn’t resist this time. We stood there, eyes adverted. Eventually she broke the silence.
“So this is it then?”
“Yes…I’m so sorry…”
After a few painfully long moments, I turned and began to walk away. Pausing as the inky blackness of the night enveloped me, I glanced back briefly. She was still standing there.
“Goodbye Iris,” I said.
“Goodbye Sage,” she replied.
Her expressive eyes locked onto mine again a final time. But they were no longer bright and bubbly. Now all I could see was sadness, and my heart ached at the transformation.
All along the walk back to my shuttle, a single question haunted me: was it worth sacrificing my humanity to become an immortal capsuleer?