Some kings wear a crown and cloak to show their station and status, but I am more than a king. My brother, Zeus, has his lightning bolt, and Poseidon has his Trident. We would be significantly weaker without them and much more vulnerable. They are weapons of kings among gods. Who needs a crown?
I needed to spend a short time in the Underworld to make sure all knew I was still more than capable of smiting the lot of them. Fear up close was always going to have the greatest impact. I had kingly duties to perform.
I walked down the road with my eyes scanning every direction. I wanted my car back, but I was more concerned that the Keys to the Underworld were missing. That could be very bad. I needed to find the human stain.
“If you leave, you terminate this program. If you fail with me, you terminate this program. If you refuse to engage, you fail this program. I have strict orders from your father, Zeus, yes? If you fail, you return to Tartarus,” she said with a smile that sent a chill up my spine. “Also, no mind games either.” She shrugged, still sitting and still smiling.
So here I am. I will do the rehab like I am supposed to. Shit, I will do anything just as long as they don’t send me back. The room flickers in the next second, her office changing in a blink to the darkened cell of Tartarus and then back.
Is Hera alive? Safe? Did my bargaining work? Did Zeus set me free? Am I imagining all of this? Another nightmare? Did I really escape or just trade one prison for another? I have so many questions and no answers.
“That after everything you did, after everything she did, I watched them take her away, and I actually felt guilty.” I stop, raising my head to look at him. It is the first time I admitted that to anyone. Let alone myself. “So yeah, guess my crimes have earned me eternity.”
turned back, facing Erebus, an ache forming once more in my chest. This wasn’t the same feeling I had carried all those years with the hatred for my father. No, this one felt different. It was longing for something, I now realized, I wanted more than revenge.