I’m thankful that Jasper died with unfinished business. It’s hard on me, and harder on him, but it was smart. He let lovers get away from him, and made promises knowing they’d go unfulfilled, and just about asked the Syndicate’s assassins to pin him down. We knew we wouldn’t get out of Georgia alive. The hopelessness was an investment.
Before we were two teenaged fuck-ups trying to take on the world. The next morning, we were one teenaged fuck-up and one pissed off ghost. We got a lot more work done. All that fancy throwing knife shit the Syndicate teaches didn’t do salt against Jasper. And when they turned and tried to escape, he’d possess their engine blocks and drive them into the ocean.
It once took us eighteen months to find the safe house where the man who strangled our father hid – an ugly labor, even if it’s how I met Hilde. And I’m thankful we don’t have to tail anyone anymore. Jasper sucked salt at tailing people, and I had to bail his ass more times than I’ve got fingers left. After he let himself die, after he died in my place in a sweltering warehouse and under a hail of knives, things got plain easier. He found Syndicate lawyers and magi faster than a GPS.
I almost began collecting a scrapbook of his greatest hits. The suspected heroin kingpin whose elevator malfunctioned. The three demonists posing as patent lawyers who went missing with their yacht.
I almost did it, but I worry that if I praise him too much, that’ll acknowledge his work, and then he’ll be done. If his business is settled, Jasper will cease to be. And maybe Jasper deserves the rest of ceasing to be. I can’t ask him because he doesn’t reckon things that way anymore. He’s still the pissed off ghost of a teenager, where I’m an expecting father of twins. I’m a little scared to tell him about them. I’m a little scared to tell him I’d like to slow down.
But I’m thankful. I’ll never pretend I’m not. Hilde wants to name one of the twins after him, and I owe him. I just don’t know how much further a man can owe.