Galen Lykaios has been a cupid for nearly 4,600 years. He definitely doesn't volunteer to be one. It's a punishment because he carries a ton of bitterness and grudges after death toward an ex-lover who betrayed his trust. For thousands of years, he has to watch as most of his charges get their happily ever after. Then he encounters Dion Angelos during one of his assignments, and he senses a spark between them.
Dion owns Angelos Funeral Home. He enjoys working on dead bodies because he can keep his interaction with the living down to a bare minimum. People can be stupid and irritating. However, he doesn't mind when they return as spirits because he enjoys most of their conversations. Then he encounters an ancient demon who seems hell-bent on killing him.
Can Galen and Dion form a relationship while battling against the ancient demon?
"Do you know how cupids come about?"
"Well, if you believe the stories that circulate among the humans, cupids are supposedly these cherubic angels of love with adorable, fluffy wings, and their sole, sacred duty is to unite two soul mates by using their magical arrows of love. After that, the two soul mates will live happily ever after."
Galen snorted. "That's the stupidest, most ridiculously fucked up piece of shitty lie that you humans have ever come up with, and believe me when I tell you that most humans are so idiotic, they will make the most moronic animal seems like a genius by comparison."
"Ouch! Do you hate humans that much?"
Galen scowled. "I really don't care about the humans to be perfectly honest."
Galen was slammed with something that resembled panic out of nowhere. "There are exceptions, and you're one of them."
Dion blushed again. "Thanks."
Galen shrugged casually even though he could feel the flutter of joy deep in his core. "Sure. Whatever."
Dion grinned at Galen. "So, what's the real story behind the cupids?"
"You will be transformed into a cupid after you've passed away if you carry a ton of hatred for the person you loved once upon a time."
Galen thought Dion would certainly bombard him with endless numbers of questions. Hence, he was taken aback when Dion burst out laughing a few seconds later. Dion even started wheezing as he attempted to catch his breath.
"Oh, damn! That's hilarious. You got me good."
Galen frowned even harder at Dion. "I'm serious."
Dion's amusement died down quickly. "Hold up! That wasn't a joke?"
"No. Being turned into a cupid is a punishment."
Dion gaped. "That's ... that's crazy. So, you're saying in reality, all angels of love don't believe in love. At all. All cupids are really filled with bitterness and grudge toward their ex-lovers. Is that so?"
Dion opened and shut his mouth repeatedly, but no sound came out, and that action made him look like a goldfish. An adorable one at that, but still a fish nonetheless.
"How ... why ... I don't understand, and I don't know what to say. The whole thing is insane to me."
Galen glanced upward for a second or two before gazing deep into Dion's eyes. "That's because the higher power above has a sick sense of humor. That motherfucking bastard probably thinks it's some kind of poetic justice."
Dion still looked really stunned. "Let me try to wrap my head around this whole cupid thing. Before you became a cupid, you were once in love with somebody, and she hurt --"
"It was a man," Galen cut Dion off midsentence.
Dion stared at Galen, obviously astonished. "Oh!"
"Contrary to what some historians are claiming, back in my time, homosexuality was actually nothing out of the ordinary. It was extremely common for two people of the same gender to be lovers."
"Okay. Back to the cupid thing. Your male lover hurt you."
"You stayed angry at him until you died."
"Angry is putting it mildly, but yes."
"Right," Dion said. "Then the higher power above decided it would serve you right to be transformed into a cupid where your only duty is to unite two people who are meant to be together so they can have their happy ending forever and ever. Essentially, you're being tortured every time you see two lovers ending up together."
"Correct, except for the part regarding the happy ending."
"What do you mean?"
Galen sighed. "Just because two people are soul mates, that doesn't imply they will automatically remain by each other's side for the rest of their lives without having to put in any efforts in order to maintain their relationship. As a cupid, my arrow works as the catalyst. Think of it as the key to a car. You insert the key and start the engine, but if you don't press down on the gas pedal or top up the gas, the relationship won't move forward, and it will come to a complete stop sooner or later."
Dion nodded. "That makes a lot of sense. What will happen if a cupid goes rogue and starts shooting arrows at two people who aren't compatible? Won't there be chaos as a result?"
"Nope. Nothing like that will occur because the arrows will be ineffective."
Dion's eyes widened. "Damn! The higher power above has an inbuilt failsafe mechanism."
"Yeah. The arrows will only work if the two people are already fated to be together. When the arrows hit the correct couple, the red thread that connects them will magically grow shorter and pull the two people closer together. Otherwise, the arrows will simply disappear."