Life isn’t always balanced. Sometimes, bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people. Like when Birdshot’s family was tortured and killed on a live broadcast across the nation. Or when the Tactiles were distracted by a giant robot, allowing the minor criminals to slip by unnoticed.
The first time I died was a freak coincidence. I’ve gone over what happened that night time and again, looking for some sign of external manipulation or factors. Some part of me wanted there to be time travel, or an ancient prophecy, or something that I could blame. But no, my first death was mundane.
It really pisses me off to think that had I done anything a little bit differently, Milgram wouldn’t have been born. Even a single step to either side would have changed everything. If the convenience store robber hadn’t tried to run out the front door. If Stuck-It hadn’t tried to stop him. If any one of a billion factors had gone differently, I wouldn’t have died.
Had he eaten a bigger breakfast, then perhaps Stuck-It wouldn’t have stuck the robber’s feet to the ground, causing the desperate man to fire his pistol blindly. Maybe a single stray bullet wouldn’t have carved a path into the back of my skull and out of my forehead. I wouldn’t have become another victim of superhuman violence, another innocent bystander killed by the constant clash between the heroes and villains.
But that’s not what happened. I was shot in the head in a futile attempt to run away from another fight between good and evil. Ironically, I would have been safer if I had just stayed still. Fuck, if I hadn’t run, then Stuck-It and that nameless man would have survived. But no. Back then, I was an obedient kid. Mom always told me to run away from these situations. Bystanders get killed time and again. Not often enough that the heroes get into any real trouble, but it happens. I just never thought it would happen to me.
Life isn’t always balanced, but it can be. Like when Birdshot hunted down and slaughtered the men responsible for his family’s death. Or when a new hero showed up to stop those minor criminals while the Tactiles were distracted. The day I died, I was karma’s bitch. When I died, life was balanced. Because when I died, someone was born. And he was psychotic.