|Irene tending to Sebastian's wounds.|
So Irene was left to be a pious widow. Saint Sebastian, Diocletian's former Captain of the Guards, was shot full of arrows and left for dead. Pious Irene recovered the body, found there was still life in it, and nursed Sebastian back to health. Having saved his life, she urged him to head out of Rome, maybe to some desert monastery in Asia Minor. But of course he wasn't having it. As soon as he was well enough, he headed straight back to the palace to get himself well and truly martyred.
Huddie Ledbetter's "Good Night, Irene" includes the lyrics, "Sometimes I live in the country, and sometimes I live in the town, and sometimes I take a great notion, to jump in the river and drown." Castulus and Sebastian might have been incautious enough to have gotten themselves killed (though neither got thrown in the Tiber River) but Irene herself was probably more careful. Eventually she too earned the palm and crown of martyrdom, but not by volunteering for it.