It’s the subconscious thoughts swirling around your brain that don’t really have a place in everyday conversation. You can’t just discuss your personal philosophies or how much you detest raisins so openly. You can’t even really plan for conversations like this. They just kind of pop up unexpectedly. I think that’s why she stops working on her story, because we have an opportunity to unleash our gooey underbellies, and they don’t often see the light of day.
“You have not changed, old friend.” I chuckled. “Enjoy your drink. I am sure we will bump into each other again soon.” I drank my scotch and straightened my suit jacket, brushing it down with my hands and patting my hair to make certain it was not messed up. I have to look my best for the big return.
“I’m glad you asked me that question. I’m going to answer it with a question of my own. How much hate could a god or goddess summon if they channeled their entire existence into that one feeling? I don’t know how or why, but the anger and hate burned hotter and brighter than I ever felt from you.”
The person turns around, a wide grin spreading across a face identical to my own. “Well, well, well. Fancy meeting you here. I think it’s about time for you and me to have a little chat,” my dark alter drawls, causing my heart to drop into my stomach.
As her power grew, I felt stronger and Jealousy felt weaker. His coughs changed to gasps for air, suffocating under the weight of the power shift. Even though my strength powered up like a charged battery, I felt immense pain. It was as if she were ripping me apart from the inside, taking her fierce anger out on me for leaving her behind. Hatred wailed in my mind, thunderous like a thousand soldiers screaming their war cries on a battlefield.
I smiled in admiration. There was a strength to Melpomene. Something different from the last time I had spoken to her. Her innocence seemed to have slipped from her heart and allowed her darkness to take over.
“Get me the Tartarus out of here, Charon.” I went to step aboard, but he thrust his oar in front of me. “Oh, the bloody greed of you knows no bounds. What do you do with these coins, anyway? You never bloody go anywhere to spend them.” I thrust a coin at him and pushed him aside to get on board. He never answered me, as usual. He just pushed us away from the foggy bank and took us across the Styx.
I moved away from my minion and closed in on my target. Every movement I made was in unison with the crowd of people dancing on the hardwood floor. The clicks of the heels and clapping of their hands masked my presence, helping me glide toward Melpomene.
I know this is it. The moment. He’s giving me one last chance. One chance to tell him what he needs to hear, the words he deserves. The feeling grows inside me, but the words refuse to tumble from my lips. If I don’t say anything, he’ll leave. He’ll be done with me. He’s not a man to give second chances.
I tilted my head slightly, smirking. “If I knew that, I wouldn’t have texted you, Atë.” I waved my hand dismissively before she could counter. “What or who helps you when you’re…feeling…ragey…unhinged…unbalanced?”
That’s why I left. Jealousy and Hatred fueled me. They were the source of my power. They gave my existence purpose. But I was tired of feeling the way I did, and hearing them constantly banter back and forth was difficult.
I gripped the glass tight in my fist, and it hissed under the pressure. It was a warning not to press the issue or attempt to follow me when I left. I glared at him from the corner of my eye and drank the rest of the whiskey in one final gulp.
Why would she be looking for me? “I’m here on business,” I say. “I’d heard they’d let you out. I would have visited, but, well, you know…” I look Atë up and down and raise my eyebrows. The outfit hugs her figure, accentuating her curves, and I don’t need to use my skills to know what every man in the bar is thinking.
The door slams open, and there is a marked change in the atmosphere. My senses tingle, but I refrain from looking at the newcomer. A frosty silence hangs in the air. I’m sure there was music playing a few moments ago. I hear stilettos crossing the floor. Slow and steady. The entire bar holds its breath. Then a shadow falls on me. I see curves and long flowing hair, and I smile inwardly.