I had loved many women over the centuries, but this one was different. She brought out something in me I hadn’t felt with the others—a sense of being complete. A rather odd statement for the God of War to make, but it was true.
I stood up and looked at the hundreds of graves in the cemetery. “You were all brave men,” I said. “It was an honor to go into battle with you. Thank you for your service and your sacrifice. May it not have been in vain.”
I dropped the letter on top of my desk and sighed. There were things that I wish had been different between us, but I believed that we had made some progress in overcoming some of our issues. All I could do now was pray and wish them well, wherever they were at the moment.
I pulled her closer to me, this time being the one to initiate the contact. My heart felt like it was going to jump out of my chest as she fell against me, wrapping her arms around me like she was holding on for dear life.
I was a bit surprised. Minotaurs were rarely seen in the mortal world anymore. There were small groups in various mountainous regions, but I hadn’t heard reports of them being in Greece in several centuries. Had Alastor recruited some help in his imagined fight with me?
Gods, give me strength. I looked down into her eyes and saw a fire there I hadn’t noticed before. A stray strand of hair had come loose and was hanging in her face. I reached up and tucked it behind her ear, letting my hand gently cup her face for a moment before pulling away. “I don’t want to see you get hurt,” I said quietly.
I picked it up, blew away the dust, and wiped at the front of it. Dang it, I forgot I was wearing white. Well, there goes that jacket. No worries. I looked at the disc again, realizing it was a shield. I rubbed more of the dirt off, and I could faintly see a name: Acropolis.
The last time we saw them, they were still standing on the shoreline, watching us sail away. I never saw the pirate crew again, although I did hear stories about Captain Tooth and the Aye-Aye Crew for many years after our encounter. They certainly gave me an interesting tale to tell.
He thrust his sword toward my midsection, and I quickly stepped aside and watched him stumble forward. I gave him a boot to his behind, sending him tumbling. “You know, you’re supposed to be this big, bad pirate,” I said, “but you fight like a baby. My sisters would have beat you already.”
She closed the office door and strode to the elevator. She wasn’t quite sure where she was going as she pressed the button to the lobby, but she knew that she couldn’t sit in the office anymore. She needed to take action.
Demeter’s stomach dropped as she heard her favorite nephew’s name. It wasn’t a coincidence that she found herself here. And now, she was concerned for her Ares’ safety, too. She had left him a letter knowing he would come if she didn’t return on time. Was she leading him into a trap?