Chapter 5: Emergency Command
Chapter Summery: The wedding of Rob and Dia, the Furies' Verdict, and Rob takes emergency command of Mighty Orbots in a whole new way!
Note: The wedding info for ancient Greek weddings is all I could find on the subject. I had to determine what parts of the wedding tradition the Amazons would uphold, and what parts they would discard as against the Amazon way. Although, technically, marriage, itself, is against the Amazon way, they would probably make some exceptions. I couldn't find anything on the ceremony, itself, so I ad-libbed, inspired by the wedding of Perseus and Andromeda in Clash of the Titans.
The atmosphere of Rondu's office had taken on an air of mythic mystery. The room was darkened, with the only light coming from the beings settled around the perimeter of the room. The thrones sat –not on the floor, as one would expect—but floated in the air, as if on invisible daises.
Nearby, in what could be called as a "witness box", sat Rondu, A.J., Barry, and the Orbots. Selena, Oro, and Plata were in a nearby room, caring for Robert and Alexia.
Earlier, Rob and Dia appeared to Rondu and explained that Vex Vector's punishment would be decided by Nemesis and the Furies. But the king of the Greek gods would allow Rondu and the team to attend the tribunal.
Now, immortals and mortals awaited he arrival of the mythic enforcers. Rob and Dia –nearest Rondu and the Orbots—chatted with them as they waited for the tribunal to begin.
"Why is Zeus doing this?" Rondu asked. "Vector will be dealt with when he's caught."
"Because now that I'm an Olympian, anything that concerns me, concerns the gods," Rob answered. "And since Vex Vector 'killed' me –in an indirect way—Father Zeus wants to deal with my 'killer' the Olympian way. And he's not someone you would want to argue with!"
Their attention was drawn to the center of the room where four women had just entered. The woman in the lead carried a pair of ancient scales in her left hand, and a sword in her right. The other three women carried swords, as well. They formed a ring, all facing Zeus. They waited for him to speak.
"Have you reached a verdict?" the king of the gods asked.
"We have, O' King," the woman with the scales answered. "I, Nemesis, and the Furies, find Vex Vector guilty of all charges."
"And the sentence?" Zeus prompted.
"Each of us has decreed a different fate," Nemesis continued. "Furies!" she cried, turning toward the other three women. "State your sentences!"
"I, Alecto, the unceasing," cried the woman on Nemesis' right, "curse Vex Vector with endless wandering of the universe. No planet will afford him shelter. He will have just enough luck to survive."
As she spoke, an image of Vex Vector appeared in a mass of swelling mists that floated into the room and swirled into a circular disc. At first, he seemed relieved, content, as he had successfully escaped from the Galactic Patrol. But as Alecto finished her sentence, she thrust the sword into the image. The sword sank into the mists, and as it disappeared, Vex's face changed to one of uncertainty.
"I, Megaera, the grudging," the woman beside Alecto spoke next, "curse Vex Vector with the mark of the traitor and murderer. There will be no place that he can go where he will not be recognized for what he is. Thou there we be no outward sign, he will be reviled by all who set eyes upon him…a monster!" She, too, thrust her sword into the image. As it sank and disappeared, Vex suddenly gave a silent scream of agony as the mark appeared, and then faded.
"I, Tisiphone, the avenger of murder," the woman between Megaera and Nemesis now spoke, "curse Vex Vector with destiny. He will survive all attempts to kill him, escape all attempts to capture him. But when the hawk soars again, Vex Vector's time will be done. Capture or death, the hawk will decide, but his luck will run its course, and come to an end." A third time, a sword sank beneath the swirling mists. Vex's image now showed absolute terror.
"So shall it be!" Nemesis cried. She allowed the scales to hang in mid-air. After a moment, the scales floated toward Barry, finally disappearing into his chest. Barry understood what this meant: He –as Bloodhawk—was the hawk mentioned by Tisiphone. When the twins were grown and old enough for one –or even both—to take command of Mighty Orbots, Bloodhawk would return to avenge the murder of the first Orbots' Commander.
"So shall it be!" Zeus confirmed the verdict, his voice thundering throughout the chamber.
"I'd be surprised if no one else heard that," Rondu commented.
The four women disappeared, their work done. The atmosphere of the room changed in mood to something much lighter.
"Now for something much more pleasant," Zeus' voice turned jovial, as if moments before there had not been a trail. "The wedding of our newest Olympians."
"Where are we going to hold it?" Dia asked as Rob put his arms around her
"Good question," Rob replied. "It will have to be where Rondu and the rest can attend. That kinda leaves out Mount Olympus. Immortals only."
"Well, I think our daughters on Themyscria should meet our new god and goddess," Hermes grinned.
"But I thought the Amazons didn't believe in marriage," Rob commented.
"Only because there have been no men on the island for centuries," Eros replied. "Except for a few visitors, that is. No permanent male residents, though."
"But the two of you are now part of the Olympian Pantheon," Hera said, as Selena and the gold and silver robots entered the room. The twins were sound asleep as Oro and Plata carefully carried them. "It's time the Amazons truly acknowledged our new godlings."
"How will we get there?" Bo asked.
"I will provide the way," Hermes replied. "You will all travel safely to Themyscria."
"Soon, love," Rob whispered in Dia's ear. "very soon…"
On Themyscria, the Amazons prepared for the upcoming divine wedding. Hunters brought in game while gatherers carted in baskets of fruit and vegetables. The Amazon vineyards provided large jars full of the finest wines.
While the royal palace was being prepared for the feast, it would be in the new temple the Amazons had built that the wedding would take place. Ancient Greek tradition was that a wedding would take place in the home of the groom, and for a god, that meant a temple.
The temple dedicated to Rob and Dia was built on open ground just outside the city wall, and to the south-east. The wall was then expanded to encompass the new building, and an entrance leading to it was made in the original wall.
The temple itself, although now decorated for the wedding, was devoid of statuary. Of all the Amazons, only Diana had met the new Olympian God of Robotics, and none of them had met Dia. Hellene, one of the Amazons' best sculptors, hoped the divine bride and groom would allow her to make statues of them for the temple.
Now, Queen Hippolyta, Princess Diana, and the majority of the Amazons were gathered at the beach, awaiting the arrival of their mortal guests. Hermes would be bringing them. Once there, they would be taken, first to prepare –they had been told that clothing for the ceremony would be provided—and then on to the temple, where first Rob would arrive with the gods, and the Dia, with the goddesses.
In a brilliant, golden light, Hermes appeared on the shores of the island. With him was an older man, a young man that –Diana thought—looked a lot like Rob—eight metal people, two middle-aged women, a younger woman, and a young girl. In the arms of two of the female metal people –one gold, the other, silver—were babies.
Rob had appeared to the robots earlier, to give them a special talisman that he embedded in each robot. He explained to them that high technology does not work on Themyscria, and without the talismans, the robots would cease to function the moment they stepped onto the island. This way, they could keep working, even with the magic that protected the Amazons' home.
"Welcome, brothers and sisters," Hippolyta greeted the guests, "to Themyscria!"
"Thank you, your Majesty," Rondu replied. "I am Rondu, Commander of the Galactic Patrol. This is my wife, Selena; Barry Simmons, the new Orbots' Commander; Lenore Simmons, Rob and Barry's mother; Amber, they younger sister, Andrea Jo Thomas, the Orbots' robotics engineer; and the Orbots, themselves –Oh-No, Tor, Bort, Bo, Boo, and Crunch. The gold and silver robots are Oro and Plata, and they carry Rob and Dia's twins, Robert and Alexia."
"Come," the queen smiled, gesturing with her hand towards several chariots. "You will be taken to a place where you can ready yourselves for the wedding.
Each guest stepped aboard a golden chariot, an Amazon at the reins. Tor and Crunch elected to run alongside the chariots, as both were extremely heavy, and would impede the progress of the ancient vehicles.
"I feel ridiculous!" Tor complained as he tried to pull the hem of his tunic a little further down his legs. If he was capable of if, he would have blushed with embarrassment.
"Shhhh…Tor!" Bo chided. "You'll insult our hosts!" The guests all wore Greek clothes –even the robots! The males –except for Rondu, who wore a long chiton—were in short chiton tunics, while the females wore long chitons. All waited at the new temple for the new bride and groom.
A golden light appeared in the temple, and through it walked the gods of Olympus. Zeus led the procession, with Rob right behind him. Walking beside the groom was Eros.
"Why is he dressed in red?" Tor asked in a whisper to Queen Hippolyte.
"Red is the traditional wedding color," she answered.
"Actually," Clio, the Amazon scribe, said, "the red chiton was optional for the groom. He was usually naked."
"I doubt if Rob would've shown up in the buff, anyway," Barry put in. "He was always the shy one."
When the procession got to the alter where the wedding would take place, Zeus stood at the alter, while Rob came to stand at the right of the alter. Behind Rob, as "best man" was Eros. The other gods took places around the temple to await the bride's procession.
As they waited, the Amazons kept looking at Rob, and then Barry, and back at Rob. Except for the red and black tips of Barry's hair, the two were identical!
"We're twins," Barry explained to the nearest Amazon. "I dyed my hair so no one could confuse us. I didn't want Rob to be blamed for something I did." This information was quickly shared with the others.
A bright flash of light signaled the arrival of Dia and the goddesses. As if to mirror the entrance of the groom, Hera led the way, with Dia right behind her and Aphrodite right beside Dia. The bride was dressed in a long, red chiton, and carried a pomegranate to symbolize fertility. She was veiled, as well. At her waist, her symbolizing mirror hung from a belt. Rob also wore his golden screwdriver on a belt.
When she arrived at the alter, Dia presented the pomegranate to Rob, who accepted the fruit, then placed it on the alter. Bride and groom then turned toward each other and grasped each other's hands. Zeus took a gold cord and held it as he began the ceremony.
"With this golden cord, I, Zeus, king of the gods of Olympus, bind the hands of Dia, goddess of Feminine Equality, and Robert, god of Robotics in divine matrimony."
Zeus wrapped the cord around Dia and Rob's hands, and ending by laying the ends of the cord across the folded hands. He cupped their hands in his own and finished the ceremony.
"You are –now and for all time –husband and wife!"
The entire audience stood and cheered for Rob and Dia, even the Amazons, for whom marriage was not possible. Weddings were rare enough for the Themyseirian, rare still, the wedding of a god and goddess!
The wedding procession made its way to the royal palace for the wedding feast. Rob and Dia led the way, the true celebrating commencing at once.
When the wedding party arrived at the feast, everyone settled in for the party. Each person got their own couch and table where they were served their meal. The guests relaxed and chatted about the wedding, the world outside of Themyscria, and anything else that came up.
Barry was surprised when Rob showed no qualms about drinking wine. Never had the former bounty hunter seen his twin drink anything stronger than soda. To see him drinking anything alcoholic was somewhat strange. He said as much to Rob, who sat nearby.
"Wine is pretty much the drink of choice on Olympus," Rob replied to Barry's comment.
"I thought that was nectar," he brother remarked.
"That's only used –along with ambrosia-- for making a mortal into a god," Rob replied. "Wine is the most drunk beverage of the gods."
"Does that mean you get drunk every day, bro?" Barry gave a sly grin at Rob.
"You aren't challenging me to a drinking contest, are you, Barry?" Rob grinned back.
"Are you accepting, Bobby?"
"Bring it on, bro!" Rob laughed.
Dionysus, knowing, what was on Rob's mind, came forward with his always-full decanter. The god of wine filled Rob and Barry's goblets then stepped back to let them "have at it".
Simultaneously, the twins lifted the cups to their lips and began their drinking contest. Barry was quite unaware that Rob had already won.
Off the coast of Themyscria, the waters of the ocean began to bubble, as if being boiled. Slowly, a huge, gleaming form rose, the water cascading off in rivulets and waterfalls. The figure was a male warrior, made of bronze. He glanced around, then headed toward the island.
Rob and Barry were on their eight cup when Barry slowly slid of the divan and onto the floor. He drained the cup he still had and watched as Rob allowed his goblet to be refilled for the ninth time. Not willing to yet accept defeat, Barry held his cup to be refilled.
He managed to drink it down, then watched in disbelief as Rob allowed his goblet to be refilled for a tenth time. Barry raised his cup for his tenth time, but instead dropped it to the floor.
"That's it!" he declared in defeat. "I'm done; you win!" He managed to crawl back onto his seat and ended up sitting so that he was straddling the couch. As he watched Rob drink his tenth cup of wine, Barry realized why his brother was so unaffected.
"Gods can't get drunk, can they?" he asked Rob accusingly.
"Not unless they want to," Ron confirmed, looking toward Dionysus.
"Then," Barry drunkenly replied, "There was no way I could have won this?"
"I'm afraid not," Rob grinned.
Barry groaned and fell back against the couch, one hand to his head. He shook his head in a show of exaggerated defeat that caused the guests to laugh.
"Note to self: Never challenge now-immortal twin bro to anything! Man; am I going to have a monster-sized hangover in the morning!"
A sound from outside drew their attention. Bort moved to the open area of the wall and morphed his eyes into binoculars. He manually focused his eyes, which bugged out at what he saw.
"What is it, Bort?" Bo asked.
"I…i…it's a g…g…giant r…r…robot!" he stuttered.
"A robot?" Rob moved with the ease of flight, alighting gently beside the blue Orbot. He looked out toward the sea.
"It is a giant," he announced. "It looks like it's made of bronze!"
"Talos?" Hera turned to the god of the forge. "Hephestesis, I thought Jason and his Argonauts destroyed him."
"They did," he answered. "What could bring him back, I do not know."
"Mighty Orbots could fight him," Tor said.
"If we had the Beam Car," Oh-No pointed out.
"And," Bo added, "if our commander wasn't too drink to lead us…" she glared at Barry, who just gave her a drunken, sheepish smile, and fell back on the divan in a stupor.
"I have an idea," Rob said. "If you Orbots will allow me to lead you again."
"Of course, Rob," Bo replied. The other Orbots also gave their consents. They would follow him as they did when he was still their commander.
"Okay. Oh-No, you stay with Barry and see what you can do for him. As for the rest of you –ORBOTS: UNITE!"
At the command from familiar lips, the Orbots leapt into the air and twisted into familiar shapes. One-by-one, the Orbots fitted themselves into the puzzle that was Mighty Orbots.
But how did Rob plan to power up the gestalt, much less control him?
Rob lifted into the air and flew into Mighty Orbots' open chest, which automatically closed behind him. Quickly, he made his way to what would have been the control room if they had used the Beam Car.
The inside of Mighty Orbots' head was devoid of the usual control panels; just an empty space with the couplings where the transformed Beam Car would have been attached and became the control center.
Rob now stood in the empty area, darkened because there is no energy powering up the mighty robot. At least, not yet.
Rob closed his eyes and became intangible. He then began to grow in size, filling every inch of the giant robot with his essence. He slipped his feet into the "boots" formed by Bort and Crunch, just as his hands slipped into the "gloves" of Bo and Boo. Like his helmet in his old life, Mighty Orbots' head fit perfectly on his own head.
Rob was now "clothed" in the armored form of Mighty Orbots!
Thus armored, Rob used his godling powers to activate Mighty Orbots, awaking the minds of the Orbots encased within the gestalt. One-by-one, the robots became aware of his presence, and greeted him.
"Hello, Orbots," Rob smiled. "Just relax and let me use your powers."
"Sure, Rob," Bo replied, and the others quickly gave their own consents, completely trusting their creator. As soon as the last one answered, they felt him take command of their powers.
Lifting into the air, Orbot-Rob flew out to sea to meet Talos before the other could get to the island. Rob remembered the story of Jason and the Argonauts, and he knew the secret of defeating the bronze giant. But before he could implement his plan, he had to immobilize Talos.
"Hey, Tin Man!" Rob's voice rang from the speakers inside Mighty Orbots. "You got an invitation?"
Talos roared at the challenger and charged. But the water slowed him down, causing him to move sluggishly as he attacked. Mighty Orbots easily dodged the ancient man of metal.
I need to finish this quickly, Rob thought. If Talos reaches Themyscria, he could destroy the island!
Activating Bo and Boo's levitation powers, Rob caught Talos in an energy beam and lifted the bronze giant into the air. Shutting off the beam, Mighty Orbots caught Talos as he fell toward the sea.
Mighty Orbots leapt into the air, holding on to Talos as the multi-colored robot flew away. Once in the air, Rob flipped Talos over so that the bronze man's heels were sticking up. Creating an energy rope, Mighty Orbots quickly bound Talos arms and leapt. He then located the ankle plug that would finish Talos. Without hesitation, Rob-Orbot removed the plug and the lava-hot blood poured out into the sea. The water hissed as the burning liquid hit it, turning into foul-smelling steam. Talos was slowly deactivated.
Heph! Rob called mentally to the blacksmith god. What do I do with Talos?
Take him to my forge, Hephaestus answered. I'll deal with him later.
Instantly, Mighty Orbots disappeared, only to reappear a heartbeat later. Rob flew out of the gestalt's chest and landed back inside the palace. Moments later, the Orbots separated back into themselves and rejoined the feast.
"How did you do that, Rob?" Boo asked.
"What did he do?" was Lenore's question. Boo told them how Rob had taken over Mighty Orbots and used their powers to battle Talos.
"He's the god of robots and robotics," Eros smiled. "It's all a part of his power sphere."
"That's true," Rob smiled back as he settled back into his seat to resume his meal. "My powers are all over robots, and the gestalt form of Mighty Orbots is a robot."
Selena was using her powers to tend to Barry. He groaned and woke up, his eyes blinking away the alcohol-induced nap.
"What happened?" he asked. When the others filled him in on the battle he missed, he added, "Bro, anytime you want to take control of Tobor and join me on a mission, feel free to do it!"
"I just might do that, bro," Rob nodded. Everyone settled back to enjoy the feast, with talk focusing mostly on the battle with Talos.
That would be an interesting thing, Rob thought as Dia lovingly feed him some honeycomb. And really, who would know that I was controlling Tobor? And it would be easier because Tobor isn't sentinant like the Orbots. I would no have to ask or explain myself. Just take over.
He feed some honeycomb to Dia, wondering how the Shadow refugees would react to both Mighty Orbots and Tobor. How would they react if they knew who –and what—was controlling the ex-Shadow robot?
The thought made him give one of his cocky, little grins as he continued the wedding celebration.
Thanks again to Lynnda for the idea of the Rob/Barry drinking contest. I hope you enjoyed it!
I know the fight with Mighty Orbots was short, but honestly, how much of a challenge could a man of bronze like Talos can be for a futuristic, giant robot? Especially one powered by a god?
Next Chapter: Chapter 6: Teenage Demi-gods: Robert and Alexia are teenagers, getting acquainted with their powers.