Chapter Nine: Changes

I stared at the guy in front of me. He stared back. With his nice features, he was very handsome, and yet he looked... old. And tired. Not wrinkly or anything, just in his expression. The guy's deep brown eyes looked so intelligent and so knowing that it seemed like he could see right into my soul. It looked like he had been everywhere, and done everything.

We kept staring at each other. Suddenly, after a few minutes, the guy gasped. He looked over me in shock.

What was wrong? Why was he looking at me like this? "What?" I asked.

The guy kept staring at me. I sat there patiently, waiting for him to answer me.

Finally, after about another few minutes, he spoke. "Calypso?" he whispered.

My eyes widened. I recognized this person, now. I didn't know how I'd forgotten what he'd looked like. "Joseph?" I said.

"Yes," he replied. A strange expression crossed his face. It was in between sad, angry, and resentful. "Why are you here?" He asked, a little icily.

My heart dropped. I had hoped that Joseph would be happy to see me again, because I was nearly overjoyed to see him.

"After the war, Percy Jackson freed me in part of his wish to the gods," I told him. Poseidon had informed me of that when he had come to take me off of Ogygia.

"Oh," Joseph said simply. And then, without warning, he ran off.

Stunned, I stared at his retreating form in disbelief. I had gotten off of my island and back on this lovely planet, hoping to find Joseph within the next year or so. Then, I find him in a day, and without exchanging more than a few words, he runs off on me! What happened? My eyebrows scrunched together in confusion.

Then, though, I came to my senses. Joseph was running away, and if I didn't find him, who knows when I'd see him again. I ran after him, hoping he had not gotten too far.

I was a fast runner. I always had been. However, Joseph was fast too, and I could barely see him in the distance, even when I was sprinting.

My pace stayed the same for about ten minutes, and Joseph was still way in front of me. Now, my speed was declining. I was tired, and had to rest.

It was no use. I'd never catch up to him. So I sat down, and with my last bit of energy, I screamed, "JOSEPH! COME BACK!"

That got his attention. He turned around, and hesitated a second, before slowly walking back to me.

His slow steps made me all the more anxious to ask why he had run away. What I had done wrong. Plus, I wanted to hear what he'd been doing for the last ten thousand years.

"What?" Joseph asked me, a little calmer than before. He wasn't scowling anymore.

"Why did you run off?" I demanded.

Joseph took a deep breath. "Okay, I'll tell you the truth. It's a long story, though," he said.

"I've got time," I said evenly.

"Okay," he started. "Well, let's start out right before I was on your island. So, I was on a quest, looking for demigods with a satyr named Pheobus and my girlfriend, Morphia. Morphia and I had just started to, as people these days call it, go out. She had always been my friend, but she started to feel like even more to me. When we were looking for the demigods, we ran into some monsters. At the time, we were in Maine, by the ocean. In the school with the demigods, there were a lot of monsters after them. Including Medusa. She was turning people to stone, and we had to stop her. In battle, Medusa lured me out to the water, because I was separated from Morphia and Pheobus. My father took pity on me, and sent me to your island before I died.

"I must tell you, while I was on your island I liked you as a good friend. Maybe even more. If not for my friends, I would have stayed with you. But I had my girlfriend, and everyone else. So, I chose to leave.

"When I got back to Camp Half-Blood, after about two weeks of being unheard from, everyone started celebrating that I was back, and things went back to normal. Morphia and I were closer than ever.

"One night, though, Aphrodite came to me in a dream. She told me, 'Hello, Joseph, I have something I would like you to know. You're not going to be aging for a while.' Or something like that. I sort of freaked out.

A few years later, people noticed that I wasn't aging. Morphia was rather distraught. Well, more than rather. One day, I caught her with a boy from the Ares cabin. He was the popular boy, the one everyone liked. Well, I walked in on Morphia and him making out. I said something like, 'How could you? I thought you loved me!' and she replied with, 'I used to. But now, I'm moving on. You're just not right for me, Joseph.' Those were her exact words.

"I never really got over her, not for a long time. Sometimes, even now, I think about her and wish I could start my life over, and choose to stay with you instead. Then, I would never have had my heart torn up," Joseph said. "The end."

Joseph looked sad, and even though he hadn't said it, he blamed his emotional pain on me.

In a way, it was my fault. I was the one who had wished for him to be here waiting for me when I was released from Ogygia. I had been selfish and ruined his life. Morphia and him probably would have gotten married and lived happily ever after if not for me.

"I'm sorry," I told Joseph earnestly. I really was sorry that his relationship had been ruined. And yet, so happy that it had been ended at the same time....

"It's okay, I guess," Joseph said with a weary expression.

"Thanks," I smiled.

He smiled back. "So, what have you been doing, up until now?"

My heart clenched. "I'd rather not talk about it," I told him. I couldn't bear to tell him that I had fallen in love on that wretched island over and over, even though I still loved Joseph. It was so cruel.

"Okay," he said, understanding. Joseph knew how hard it could be to talk about the past. "I'll ask you some other time. For now, lets just sit here and relax."

I smiled. That was exactly what I wanted to do. Sit here, relax, and enjoy my time with Joseph. Because, after living thousands and thousands of years without ever getting older, the eighty or so years I had left in me would fly by fast.

I would have to savor every moment. So, I started. Gazing off into the sunset, looking at the city around me, smelling the air, feeling the warm breeze.

My life was truly starting.