The waves lap passively at the shore. The boat or ship or whatever Kaldur had called it was due soon. Artemis shivered. The icy wind whipped at her coat and her newly dark hair. She took a deep breath and turned to face her teammate.
His skin was the same color. His eyes still danced with that light of painful honesty. He still smelled the same. Of cheap Axe and the ocean; Artemis had always liked that scent. Everything seemed like it was the same. But Kaldur had changed. His bright blonde hair had a new crew cut. It brought out his strong jaw. It made him much more intimidating. His new uniform didn’t suit him. It engulfed him in a way that didn’t seem natural. He had put on a few pounds of muscle. But there was something that stood out.
Crinkles and lines that had never been there before congregated around his eyes and mouth. His breathing seemed so heavy. His head dipped, but it wasn’t the weight of responsibility. He had always held that with grace. It was the weight of guilt.
“I heard about that girl.” She whispered cautiously. “Tula, I am so sorry, Kaldur. I am so, so sorry.”
He smiled faintly, the lines becoming more prominent. “Thank you, Artemis. That means…very much. Thank you.” He placed the heavy helmet on his head. “Let’s go.”
Finally, Artemis could place it. The others, Dick and Wally, even herself, they aged.
Kaldur grew old