It isn't so bad, being dead. I get to watch everything going on at once, down on Earth. I can watch the entire Earth as a whole, zoom in on one country, a town, even individual people. I can follow strangers as well as family and friends, and I don't have to sacrifice TV or music. It's pretty much a guarantee that someone, somewhere, is listening to the song or watching the show I'd like to watch, and it's nice to see how my friends are making out now that I'm gone.

I'm never short of company, either. My whole family is up here, and some old friends as well, and old childhood pets. I was surprised to find, upon arriving, that Metro Man wasn't here (can you believe that bastard is still alive, and didn't do one single thing to help us?), but I'm kind of glad. That leaves Megamind's kill count down at one; Tighten.

But I think my favorite part of being dead is the memories. I can go back to any time I want and relive what happened, even if I can't consciously remember it. And sometimes, every so often, there's an option there. It's very hard to see, and even harder to follow, but it's not impossible, not by any means. And when you get that option, you can go back and see what would have happened had you or another person made a different choice. That happened to me the first time I went back.

You know how people say that your life flashes before your eyes when you die? It doesn't. But immediately after you die, you are launched into a fast-forward of living through your life, every pain, good feeling, thought, and memory since birth and up until death. And while I was doing that, the option came up, right at the point when Megamind kidnapped me.

I followed it, and it turns out that me being kidnapped by Megamind wasn't an act of fate, but one of destiny. On my way to my interview that day, Megamind could have chosen to kidnap my best friend, Roxanne Ritchi, instead of me, and if he had, everything would have been different.

Megamind's plans would have all been so much different, except for the last one, which would have been very much the same. As it turns out, my life would have been very different. I wouldn't be as big an author as I was, though I would have had two or three books published, and three years from now I would be publishing the book that would be chalked up as the newest "Great American Novel". I would never have known Roxanne or Metro Man or Megamind, but for hearing of them on TV.

I would have loved Metro Man as our city's hero, I would have hated Megamind, just like everyone else, and I never would have fallen in love.

The biggest difference is that right now, I would still be alive.

But one thing that makes me wonder is that Roxanne would have ended up falling in love with Megamind, and I find it a little funny. Not funny ha-ha, not funny-weird, more like a mix of the two, both and neither, and it really makes me think about how Fate loves to play these games with us.

After I died, nearly all of Metro City showed up at the funeral, even though I didn't know the majority of them at all. They insisted I was the hero, that I saved the day. I don't believe that for a minute. I played my part, but it was Megamind who was the real hero, the one who really saved us. Megamind and Roxanne were no exception to this, of course, and my funeral, both pushing to the front of the crowd with not a single nay-sayer to send them to the back, was the first time they really met, face to face, no bars or screen or holowatch between them.

They could have blamed each other for my death if they wanted to, and no one could really have blamed them. They could have fought and squabbled and cursed at each other, but they didn't, and I'm proud of them for that. Instead, they found comfort and solace in one another's company after I died.

Megamind and Roxanne mourned for me and got together to comfort one another, but eventually it was less about comfort and more about enjoying each other's company. They fell in love, and now they're getting married. Just today I watched as Megamind proposed to Roxanne, and when she said yes, I literally squealed in excitement. My brother looked at me as if I were insane.

"You realize that your true love just proposed to your best friend, right?" And I nodded. It means they've moved on from me, that they're able to get on with their lives, and I'm glad. I don't want them to mourn me constantly, I don't want them to be sorry for their loss to the point where they can't go on living. But I do think it's funny how Fate and Destiny built me up to think that I was supposed to be Megamind's only to have it ripped away and handed to my best friend.

Later that night, though, when Megamind and Roxanne were celebrating back at the lair, Megamind slipped off, and I saw him enter a closet I had never noticed before. He came in, took a small blue velvet box from his pocket, opened it, and set on the shelf, next to a picture of me and a candle.

Then Roxanne came in and saw, but she didn't get angry. Instead they lit the candle and sat there for awhile, holding each other in silence. It made me cry, to know that after a year and half, they still miss me so much.

I could feel so many more emotions than I feel right now; I could feel hurt, or jealous, or angry, or wronged, or any number of combinations. But in the end, I only feel proud and happy for my old friends, and in this instance, I'm behind Fate 100%.

I loved Megamind, and he loved me, but in the end, he doesn't need me. He doesn't need someone who's crazy, who'd die a thousand times over so he could live once, an anti-social writer with a tendency to be too nice or too apologetic.

No. He needs someone who's witty, nosy, someone who knows everything there is to know about sociality, someone who doesn't fear going against the plan, but won't completely ignore it because she thinks she has a better idea of what to do.

As much as I love him, Megamind doesn't need me. What Megamind needs is Roxanne.

And Fate has always known that.

Author Comments:

AAAANNNDDD...Scene! :D Thus ends the story of A Different Path. If you didn't figure it out, this here is Maggie talking to you about after she died. Not my best work, but I think it turned out pretty good in the end. What do you think? And of course, Roxanne ended up with Megamind, because that is the way the world must be properly balanced. :)

The Theme Song for this story (and Maggie Maddison) would have to be "She's A Rebel" by Greenday. :)