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Different For Girls

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Jupiter’s genes want them to be family, in any case.

She said she would never come back, but she does. Balem is dead, and Titus is languishing in prison and so dull these days – not to mention ugly, his age catching up with him – so Kalique is the only option for Jupiter’s decision to spend time with the Abrasax family. Kalique seems the least threatening, of course; even she is no longer sure how much is feigned and how much is real anymore.

But not everything Kalique told Jupiter was a lie: she and her mother never could see eye to eye, saw each other ever more rarely as the centuries roared on.

Jupiter is still learning of a world beyond her planet, and is still waiting for something to come out of the Abrasax family that she doesn’t deem evil; she limits her time with Kalique, and as months slip by, Kalique learns to make the most of the hour with Jupiter wearing an expensive gown Kalique has chosen and a suspicious expression.

“I don’t think my mother ever looked like you do,” she says, while Jupiter’s eyes widen and her dress slides down her shoulder and one day – maybe one day, Kalique will work with that. “There’s a lightness about you I’m not sure any of us have ever worn.”

Jupiter blushes and dips her head, and she’ll leave early today, but she’ll come back next time, and the time after that; suspicious, wary, uncertain, but here nevertheless.