Goddess of war¤ The Vandrisvian pantheon is my own inventionGoddess of war in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The jungle was hot, wet and filled with all kinds of beasts from roaring feline carnivores to itty-bitty biting insects. The screaming monkeys were stealing our food if we didn't look out and the colourful birds were using our tents and vehicles as toilets.
"The enemy is located south-west of us," the mortal scout reported, wiping sweat off his cocoa-brown forehead. "There is a shallow valley-like pit where the river Gaodanza meets the river Livontos. That's where the main troops are."
"How are they equipped?"
"More guns than us, three Falcon class helicopters. No chariots."
"Those hardly works in the jungle anyhow, I commented, go on!"
"They're about 500 mortals, and I believe two or three immortals."
"Don't think so."
"We could be able to take them. In a surprise attack, preferably at noon, since these people would expect us to come at night or early in the morning." Alxolita, I turned to the mortal commander, "pr
HerculesUpon the first look Dionysos and Hercules seemed very much like the total opposites. But they had one thing in common (beside their dad, I mean) - and that was a mortal mother. Alkmene Akrisian was also a mortal who passed on an immortal gene to Hercules.Hercules in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
First time I met Hercules I had no idea that he was another brother. At that time he seemed just a rowdy and happy-go-lucky immortal, content with partying all night long and working for others and for an income that provided him with his worry-less life. He lived in Doria, employed by the goddess Oshera, a granddaughter to the Hyperpantheon politician Kandrios of Elesios.
Doria was not the safest place back then. Located next to the wastelands of Merioly, where the Titans had lived (and some still dwelled, according to certain sources) it was haunted by outlaws raiding the south-east plains and there were rumours of man-eating mutant monsters who had lone wanderers for supper. The radiation inside of Merioly, caused by Chronos' nucle
Under AttackArmy Postal ServiceUnder Attack in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
When the Greek Army swept like wild fire trough the city all I could do was run. Run with my son in my arms, trying to save us from the Greeks and most of all from the terrible Ares himself...
(A kind of steampunk take on the mythology - for those who claim ancient accuracy - sorry it's not to be found here, I've taken quite a few liberties with the timeline and geographic characteristic)
1. Under Attack
"Mommie, are we going to die?" Kalian looked at me with his big, brown eyes filled with fear.
"No, dearest, we're not." I lied. "We're not going to die. We're going to make this; we just have to get away from the men chasing us."
"Can we do that?" my son hiccupped.
"Yes, yes, dear, we can do that!"
Nevertheless I was beginning to have my doubts. After all I was alone, carrying a five year old in my arms. A heavy five years old, and the Dark Warriors who persecuted us were plentiful. They were huge and lethal and well armed. Even if I could get o
Athena18. AthenaAthena in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"Ares!" my voice almost got stuck in my troth and with a shiver of terror running down my spine I pulled Kalian towards me, holding him close and hard and wishing there was a way for me to stop him from seeing his father becoming attacked. Because this was no Anatolian god, this was something far worse, a deity with an aura burning almost as red as Ares' own and radiant with an invincible force. I had hardly seen anything more powerful in my whole life, this god in his cover-all tar-black leather outfit held as much strength as Ares himself - if not even more.
Still my beloved was not resource less, far from it. He kicked into battle mood with an almost unbelievable speed, and ducked the attackers attempt with a swift and agile move. The leather clad god turned and attacked again, and this time Ares blocked the sword arm with his own left elbow and at the same time he reached for the arm with the axe and somehow managed to wrestle that weapon away from the adversary. Spinnin
Welcome to Olympos19. Welcome to OlymposWelcome to Olympos in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I had expected Olympos to be magnificent, but my fantasy had not been able to fully envisage its grandeur, and I was breath taken upon coming nearer. We were riding Ares' flying chariot, propelled by divine magic, so we got to see the whole wonderful vista from above. At first there was just this imposing mountain which side we were ascending. It was steep and the summit appeared like just another snow-clad peak halfway hidden in clouds.
But as we were sweeping over the pinnacle we passed a kind of a borderline where the snow was traded into grasslands and meadows. There were small rivers, tiny lakes and waterfalls cascading down the rocks, painting rainbows in the sky. There were pretty houses making up a neat little village hardly larger than Salenda and there were delicate bridges spanning waters and canyons. I spotted large tended gardens and meadows where the most splendid horses were gracing and frolicking around.
In the middl
Rhodos"So what about Rhodos?" Hebe asked. "Are you coming with me or not?" Herakles turned around in bed, still a bit weary and fuzzy-eyed after their love making.Rhodos in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"When are you planning to go there?"
"Uh-hm. Have to start as soon as possible if I should be able to accept pupils at the start of the next spring semester. Sweetie..."
With the gentlest of touch Hebe stroke Herakles' whiskered chin, feeling its warm and rogue texture against the tip of her fingers. His thoughtful green eyes were regarding her where she laid resting in the hook of his left arm. He could be mistaken for Zeus, she though. And yet not. There was something more mellow over Herakles. More relaxed and easy-going. Then again Herakles didn't have to worry about the millions of things which kept Zeus busy all the time. Herakles could follow his whims if he liked. He could come with her to Rhodos should he so desire. And decide such things on a short notice, something Zeus with his full agenda would
Redemption of the exiled one"Herc, I want you to sit in on the interview with this man," Hebe asked of her beloved who looked up from the wall he was bricking. She smiled, Herakles sure loved to work with his hands, and no matter that the man was a god, an Olympian god, no task seemed too menial to him. In that sense he reminded her of her beloved brother Hephaestos.Redemption of the exiled one in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"Okay," Herakles dried off his hands on a rag, not that it helped much, it was as grimy as everything else around. Another Hephaestos deja-vu. "Tell me about him!"
"Ehrm…" Hebe began, a bit distracted. "He's… I've seen him once and I asked him to come back today. He's… peculiar in a way that I find… I don't know how to describe it, but the man is intelligent and he carries wisdom of the ancient kind. He seems… old."
"He's a god?"
"Yeah – well – he's immortal, if that's what you mean. He's…"
"I have a feeling there's something familiar with him. As if I ought to know him for some reason. Or at least recognize him. Perhaps he has been a
Blood in the hot sandSweet Artemis, but was that man huge? Huge and scary. Biting her lips, Penthesileia regarded Achilles from a far, scrutinized his six foot five bulk, clad in shining armour of the kind that was professionally molded to leave as little openings as possible and still not hinder the user too much or being too heavy or cumbersome to wear. Achilles' bronze helmet covered his face and was crowned with a notable red, white and black crescent and he carried a long sword and a ditto spear, both weapon looking really heavy, still he treated them as if they were wooden toys, swung them with such quick ease that they almost appeared harmless - until they bit into the enemy. And the enemy in turn bit the dust.Blood in the hot sand in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
He had still not seen her yet, but she knew it was only a matter of time before he would. But when he did – that would be it. Penthesileia would do what she had come here to Ilium for, she would fight Achilles, and she would do her very best. Perhaps she might even get the smallest of c
Re-encounterDawn was breaking, pink sunlight sneaking in trough narrow slits in the tent, like spears of light, waking her up as they tickled her eye-lids. Out there the sounds of the day had begun, horses were neighing, dogs barked and people walked to and from, talked, the rattling and clinking of their arms and the creaking of leather, heavy-shoed feet crunching against the gravel. There were also the smells, scents of newly baked bread mixed with the less pleasant reek of garbage and dirty dog.Re-encounter in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Yawning, Penthesileia crawled out of the sleeping bag, swung her legs down on the cold and clammy, trampled ground and stood. Quickly she made it over to the commode, poured ice-cold water in the sink and splashed it in her face. For a moment she missed Hephaestos' plumbing, then she reminded herself, she was a warrior, she shouldn't spoil herself with such commodities. Besides, being here in the New Country by the river of Tiber, where things were really happening, was so much fun. Never a day like the
A first time for everythingIt was one of the first real spring days, the sun felt like it was warming for the first time in months, thawing up the ground. And while there still was snow in the shadows behind trees and boulders, the sounds heralded a more gentle season, with birdsong and gurgling creeks, the air smelled of anticipation and the elation of sprouting new life. Everywhere there were small signs, the squirrels seemed to hurry faster up the tree trunks, the birds were diving and looping in the sky and the rabbits and hares were running to and from. Even some insects were seen, a buzzing bumblebee here, a ladybug there. A beetle was sneaking down in a crack between two small stones and a spider was sitting on a twig, trying to figure out how a net was made.A first time for everything in Short Stories More Like This
And then there was the young man – hardly more than a boy to be true, who came running down the narrow path, running and jumping and skipping – skidding from stone to stone and speeding up as if he was chasing the last traces of the rainb
The path of two hearts"We can't pretend this never happened," Herakles said as he was handing Hebe her towel. Of course, being gods they could simply dry off just wishing themselves dry, but that was not as cozy as to snuggle up inside a warm, fuzzy textile.The path of two hearts in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"I know." she replied, looking at the tall, beefy god out of the corner of her eye. Herakles was even heftier than Ares, although not as tall, and he was hardly graceful in his moves. Instead his body language was utilitarian and straightforward, as if he had never bothered to use it to create an appearance, but simply to acquire what he wanted. He used his body so totally down-to-earth that it was almost funny to see. And still, it was that uncomplicated way of carrying himself that made him so completely attractive in her eyes.
"So now what?" He looked at her for guidance.
"We try to use some common sense, Herc. I'm not going to insult your intelligence by pointing out that we can't even begin to ponder a relationship. We are simply not meant to be."
Goddess' pledgeAchilles was kissing her with the same poignant intensity as he had fought her earlier, and Penthesileia tried to gasp for breath, surprise and consternation getting the better of her. Now what? Was that some kind of way to distract her from claiming her victory?Goddess' pledge in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The very next second she understood was he was up to, she was no adversary anymore, she had shifted to ally against one of the onlookers, and she would have laughed, had he not been busy with her mouth. With a part of her mind she recognized some kind of commotion over by the edge of the training pit, but she couldn't care less, she started to kiss him back.
Now, Penthesileia had to admit, she wasn't the most skillful kisser, she had never really had the use for that kind of expertise. Those men she had been with, she could count them on the fingers of one hand – and she would still have fingers left. The interactions had brief and unfulfilling, transitory encounters with other people who wanted nothing but an int
The riddle of the Labyrinth 1.Kisses and strangeThe riddle of the LabyrinthThe riddle of the Labyrinth 1.Kisses and strange in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Inspired somehow by the movie Labyrinth featuring David Bowie as the daemon king Jareth. But what started out as a mere fanfic soon became something else, more original. But I still kept Sarah and Jareth as a sentimental gesture to what this one once was, even if so much else, including both their roles, is changed.
1. Kisses and strange artefacts
Everything felt smooth, soft and calm in the orange light of the sinking sun. The Island of Alozzia stretched out across the sea like a sea lion sunning itself on the rocks. It was hilly and green with great rounded boulders jutting up through the lush jungles and white sandy beaches. Ternilia was lighting the lamps on the front porch when Lord Orinian walked up the steps, the small sounds of clinking of his armors as a counterpoint to the creaking of the wooden steps. The firelight brought out the strands of reddish gold in his long black hair and the bronze of his skin. He walked up to his
For Old Time's Sake - 3. Comes MorningStruggling through a maelstrom of dreams, one more peculiar than the other, Hera was making her way towards awareness again, as if swimming towards the surface of a deep sea, fighting the kaleidoscopic currents with forceful strokes. With a jolt her eyes fluttered up – to a startling view. She was definitely not in her own bedroom in La Casa Dolorada in Venice, Italy. Daylight radiated from the wrong direction and the texture of the bedding felt different, the duvet too thin. Not to mention that the mixture of smells were dissimilar – yet oddly familiar in their lush muskiness, triggering a torrent of remembrances one more bittersweet than the next. Most of all, she was not alone in the bed, there was someone asleep next to her, someone who's warm chest her head was resting next to, the rhythm of his heartbeat in her ear, a strong arm encircled with such an astonishing ease around her waist.For Old Time's Sake - 3. Comes Morning in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The next millisecond it all came back to her. Zeus. Tokyo. Zeus. Leaving Venice. Ze
For Old Time's Sake - 1. EncounterLong, slender hands with silver-painted nails were holding on to the steam of a glass with white wine, large and almond-shaped dark-brown eyes shadowed by thick lashes regarding how the light bounced off the liquid as she slowly spun the flute around with gentle hands. The inertia of the wine was causing intricate effects of light and shadows on the dark wood of the bar desk and upon her pale, slightly olive-skinned hands. She had been looking at that glass now for a while, with melancholy tainting the beauty of her eyes, but hardly taken a sip of the wine. Looking at it but not quite seeing since her mind was wandering, plowing through tons of remembrance. What was she searching for, what was she trying to recall? Honestly, she didn't know other than that she sought something to banish the boredom and the forlorn loneliness that was grating at her old soul.For Old Time's Sake - 1. Encounter in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
She didn't know what was worse, what she regretted the most, the things she had done, or those she never did. There was just one
For Old Time's Sake - 2. Strangers in the nightStill the same Zeus in several senses he knew that she was still the same Hera in as many. Therefore he took her to another part of Tokyo and a traditional restaurant of the upper-notch kind. One of these locations where every single platter of food was an exquisite piece of art and the flavours and combinations were outlandish yet appealing to Hera. They received their own tiny section, a room more than an alcove, softly lit and secluded by rice-paper screens and sans chairs around the low table but with soft pillows covering the tatami floor. As Zeus was conversing in Japanese with the headwaiter, marvels began happening in a swift and almost unnotably way, two lovely young waitresses in traditional kimonos and hairdos started producing delicacies, lit candles and incense and poured sake and other beverages, everything selected with the cordiality of the greatest care. Hera might be unfamiliar with Japanese culture but she sensed these things in the air more than recognizing them.For Old Time's Sake - 2. Strangers in the night in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The riddle of the Labyrinth 4. A father inprisonedSarah nearly jumped out of her skin when she saw legs appear next to her own jeans clad ones. Stopping her shoegazing, she turned and spotted a stranger sitting down next to her on the low bench, as if it was the most natural thing in the world. Sarah hadn't expected anyone else coming to this corner of the garden. Not in the middle of the afternoon, where everyone else was presumed to be in school or at work, save for her, skipping school partly because of not having done her chemistry homework and partly to get some time to think. And the old lady living on the first floor did seldom venture out this far in the garden.The riddle of the Labyrinth 4. A father inprisoned in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"Oh dear. I'm sorry to cause such a stir," the visiting woman said with a perky smile of the kind that was melting her smart features into the very picture of warmth, her glittering eyes holding a unique, almost iridescent color of verdant green that only presents itself in the new leaves of spring.
"Who are you?" Sarah, having been caught off-guard, had lost her grasp
The riddle of the Labyrinth 2. A solitary kingSarah stood in her den by the circular window, watching Doris climb into her father's car and then taking off down the lane and towards the youth disco, which she was not allowed to attend. As the red lights of the Toyota disappeared behind the neighboring building, Sarah felt a strange mix of anger and shame burn upon her cheeks as she gazed out in the deep blue light of the October evening. Stars were beginning to come out and a cheese-yellow vaning moon rubbed its belly against the rooftop of one of the houses on the other side of the lane. A bus rolled by and a gray cat patrolled the wall, otherwise absolutely nothing was happening out there. With a sigh Sarah took a step back and slumped down in her bean bag, pushed out her feet and craned her neck to stare into the ceiling instead, trying to count the twig marks for what time in order she did not know. Just as with the stars did she lose count. They were simply too many and too disordered.The riddle of the Labyrinth 2. A solitary king in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Why weren't she permitted to go to that
The riddle of the Labyrinth 5 - Words to the kingKing Angarian progressed with an easy stride across the palace's main practice yard, the steel-clad toes of his knee-high dark brown leather boots kicking up whorls of dust from the bare patches of dirt scattered between clumps of dry brown grass. He carried a composite sword in his right hand; his left was free. Practice today was with single swords alone and shields not permitted. He was dressed in a burgundy leather jerkin under a half-sleeved shirt of chain mail of the same semi-transparent, light-gray composite, leaving his lower arms bare. His flaxen, shoulder-length hair was covered by a plain helm with flared cheek-guards.The riddle of the Labyrinth 5 - Words to the king in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The heat was stifling, like the hot breath from an oven, but Angarian did his best to ignore it. Instead he focused on his opponent. Anything else - the youths and soldiers talking and sparring in other parts of the yard, the clacking sound of composite striking composite, or a grunt as someone took a blow - was a distraction he could not afford.
The riddle of the Labyrinth 3. Something out thereEven when she slept, she was awake.The riddle of the Labyrinth 3. Something out there in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
The mind of a Celestian Mechatronic Cyborg was comprised of a network of constantly firing electrical synaptic pulses that connected the multiple processors required to operate a being as complex as she was. And it wasn't prone to going offline. At least not completely.
She often wondered if the mental activities occurring while she was in a state of sleep were akin to the dreaming minds of those who were not machines. Those often referred to as Organics or Breathers, depending on how polite you were intending to be. She never dreamed of walks on the beach, monsters lurking among the shadows or about giving speeches in the nude. Unlike the dreams of Breathers, her thought processes were, what she liked to boast, much more logical. Rational. She could spend an entire recharge session working on a calculation needed for forecasting the weather over the nearest fortnight, or analyzing the influx and outflux of commuters in the city of Ondea's gigantic s
The riddle of the Labyrinth 6. Alien matterLord Orinian of Alozzia made his passage down the long gallery, not bothering with either the elaborated elegance of the interior decorations or the people who stopped what they were doing to stare at his unusual appearance. He didn't look twice at the high, thin pillars of synthetic diamond and gold, lit from inside by warm full-spectral light. Nor was he impressed by the high, pointy and gold-mullioned windows, partly in stained glass, from where the sun streamed in and bounced off the polished floor of elaborated mosaics depicting fractals and meandering abstract patterns. He had seen it all before, plenty of times. His junior colleague, High King Angarian was a man who loved opulence, almost in absurdum, he was an ardent collector who filled his palace with furniture, rugs, chandeliers and the finest of arts and sculptures and every time Orinian visited Whitehall did Angarian have something new to present. The overall affect was an abode of power and privilege, just what one wouldThe riddle of the Labyrinth 6. Alien matter in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
For Old Time's Sake - 4. SantoriniThe sun was beaming generously over the little village of Oia, tracing gentle warm rays over snow white, cubistic buildings handsomely divergent against the bluest of seas, the yonder islands seen as darker indigo shadows in the distance. It was one of those serene afternoons when nothing really happened save for the ticking of the clock in the tower of the old court house across the street. Even the tourists were sparse this time of the year, when the season had yet to begin in earnest.For Old Time's Sake - 4. Santorini in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
So for the men by the small bar the sound of the motorcycle made them all perk up from their glasses of ozou. It was a heavy Yamaha, large as a bull and bright red, but the brawny man riding it was handling it with astonishing affluence as he rode across the square and over to the sole parking lot in a place where the alleys were too narrow for motorized vehicles. As the monstrous machine came to a halt, the rider and his female passenger stepped off with ease and with graceful movements they relieved