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Loss lazily twisted her fiery red curls around her long, candle-like fingers. She tried to enjoy the soft breeze in the balcony. The cloud goddess gifted her with a caftan. She marveled at how soft if felt.
Her brother Ecstasy was late as usual. "Busy spreading joy. One couple at a time," she
whispered to herself. She was about to raise her hand when a servant magically appeared with a hand mirror for her. "Thank you, Matilda."
"Your bath of morning dew is ready."
"That could wait. I need to talk to Ecstasy." She examined her oval-shaped face, not a single line visible on her ancient face.
"He works a lot. That boy should ease up and take it easy."
"Are you saying I'm a slacker? My job is much more taxing. Separating lovebirds. It's the sewer cleaning job for us gods. I tried bribing other gods to do it for me. No takers. They say waging a war is much easier. Nobody else can take all the hysterics!. Too much shouting and crying. These humans love drama! I have to make sure poison letters get to the intended party. Through the ages, I have learned to dodge clothes, glass furniture and crazy things thrown out along with an unwanted lover. Nobody appreciates that. All everybody notices is what dear brother is doing. Don't they realize that I have to fix things when he accidentally hits a couple I previously broke up? Batting average, they split up again!" Her red hair loomed large around her head, framing her now angry face.
"Sister, cut Matilda some slack. Thank you Matilda.
You may leave me to deal with my twin." The servant heaved a sigh of relief and bowed down before making an exit.
Ecstasy bounced down Loss' side. "Another bad breakup? Haven't you learned to cope? You have that almost every single day. PMS? You're not human. New boyfriend? Not another loser, Loss?" He tussled her hair.
"How many times have you told me about that?"
"Oh, Ecstasy. I really do mean it this time. I'm so fed up with breaking up."
"Have you talked to Father and Mother?"
She curled up beside her older brother. "I will. After my trip with Rage."
"You're going out with him? Isn't it too much bad vibes with the two of you together?" he laughed.
"Misery loves company," she moped. "He is good for my work."
"You said that about your previous boyfriends, Pride and Paranoia? Do you realize what was wrong with them?"
"Their names both start with P?"
"Yes, and you skipped S when you hooked up with Rage." He pulled her ear. "Won't my little sister ever learn? These gods are beneath you! They are not even good at what they do. Pride could barely show himself to us. I'm bewildered at how embarrassed he was about he does to humans. Paranoia was a classic example of how a god should not operate. He got eaten up by what he does! He made me so jumpy after I talk to him I would not be able to hook up a single couple for days."
"Rage is different."
"He is assured, confident and good at what he does."
"Is he the reason why you're thinking of quitting?"
"No. I'm tired."
"Who'll take up your work?"
"Father can do it while snoozing. He is not Pain for nothing."
"You do realize that what you do is important?"
"Yes. But it's a bitch of a job. Nobody likes me. I always have a cloud over me, complete with rains and thunderstorms." Upon uttering those words, a small clump of clouds stopped on top of her and let out a cold shower.
"WHAT?!"Loss screamed curses while being drenched.
Ecstasy was torn between laughing and shooing away the cloud that apparently only targeted his sister.
"Why are you laughing, you moron! Help me find the culprit! Oh, it is already such an effort to maintain my extraordinary looks by being Mother's daughter. And I still have to deal with inanities like this!"
Then suddenly the rains stopped and the cloud dissipated. From afar, the sorely drenched Loss and the choking Ecstasy saw their new neighbor, Nature, scold her young son. She called out her apologies. "My deepest apologies Loss. My son Water is so playful. I will send new vestments to you. I'm really sorry."
"But Mother, she said she always had a cloud with rains over her. She did not have one so I made her one."
Before Loss can hurl curses at the mother and son, Ecstasy accepted her apology. Nature called on her other sons, Fire and Air, to dry out Loss before she called on her father Pain to exact revenge for the childish prank.
"Sweetheart, what happened to you?" A thin, young man entered the balcony.
"Young deviants." Came the terse reply while shooting sharp glances at Fire and Air, who managed to stay farthest from Loss while drying her.
Rage planted a kiss on her forehead. "Laugh, my love. They are children." He turned to Ecstasy and shook his hand. "How are you, Ecstasy?"
"Business has been interesting but difficult. How about you?"
"Humans remain to be the simple creatures that they are. But they complicate their lives in ways that baffle me. Who am I to complain? They make my job easier." Rage presents a calm aura. Quite unexpected from a god with a fiery goal.
"Those same complications compete for their attention. I have lesser good hits now than centuries ago. I try so hard, tried every trick I can think of, yet more and more humans are jaded."
"Woe to me. My load increased hundredfold," Loss interjected dramatically.
"I try to consult with other gods on how they're doing. Might help my hits get better. I hear you're going on a trip with my sister?"
"Yes, we'll visit humans."
"What's special about this trip then? We do that all the time?"
"I have been able to persuade her to go as a human."
"Finally able to get over your trauma, Loss?" Ecstasy's boyish face betrayed his concern. "The first and only time she visited as a human was with our father. She never went back in human form."
"You were fortunate. Mother was with you in your first visit."
"I could understand why Ecstasy did not become scarred like you. Your mother, Love, would have shown the best side of humans."
"I only felt their hurt. It was too much to bear given their fragile existence. I never felt that helpless again."
"How will you cope this time?" asked Ecstasy.
"Rage will be with me. He is far more aware how humans survive their flimsy lives. Father opened me up to their pain, the magnitude of which I was not ready for that time," explained Loss.
"Take time off then. The world can do with a breather from breakups," smiled her brother.
"Oh, you thought I will stop performing my duties while I'm away?"
"Shouldn't you take a break? You always worry."
"Ever since that goddess Envy said that she felt she worked harder than me, I cannot allow myself to relax. What will other gods say? That I am slacking off?"
"Dear, dear, calm down. Let's plan our visit first. Shall we? Breathe. Unclench your fists. Stop staring at those two boys. They're already petrified of you."
"You two go ahead. Is that your fiery chariot over there?"
"Yes. I changed that fire color to blue so it won't steal attention from Loss' hair." Rage smiled. "I'll get it ready. Good to see you, Ecstasy."
"We'll leave you here, brother."
"You and Rage seem to be good for each other. I wish I can work my magic on you, Loss. Just to seal the deal a bit more," he laughed.
"Your magic doesn't work on gods, Ecstasy." She kissed him goodbye. "There's a price to being one of us. See you sometime."