No, I'm not done with my Bows swords lightening bolts stories, I just really wanted to try something new while typing that as well. Italics are flashbacks, I know there is alot of flashbacks this chapter, but I just wanted to clarify everything that happened... Enjoy
~ArtemisFrimm (gobble gobble ;)
Artemis was walking calmly through a forest located in Colorado. Though she appeared calm, she knew that she was being followed. She wasn't sure who or what was following her, but she knew she was being followed.
Artemis recognized the feeling instantly, almost as soon as she had left her hunters' camp. When she had lived in Greece, she was used to men from local cities trying to follow her; although, when they followed her, she could feel a strong sense of lust. But whoever or whatever was following her now, wasn't feeling lustful at all. This being felt dangerous, and angry, that's what worried her, even though she wouldn't let it show.
Artemis continued her walk, showing no signs of knowing she was being followed. She wanted to catch her stalker off guard; she hoped that if she appeared ignorant to the threat, her stalker would show himself; allowing Artemis to deal with him herself.
Artemis continued on further when she froze, the threatening force that had been following her was no longer present. Artemis furrowed her brow, something was definitely not right
Artemis whipped around in the direction of the 'snap' and was startled to see that no one was behind her.
"Well, Artemis I see that your hunter skills haven't faded with time." An eerily familiar voice spoke from behind her.
Artemis turned around to face the man who had spoken and felt her heart nearly stop with shock. There's no way…
The man smirked at her obviously surprised expression, "Hello Artemis."
Artemis recomposed herself as best as possible and tried to put on a cheerful expression, even though on the inside her mind was reeling at warp speed, "Hello Hercules."
He looked no different than he had the day she had… She remembered the first time she had seen him…
"Artemis, Lord Zeus wishes to see you." Hermes said as he appeared by her side as she sharpened her arrows.
Artemis cocked her head to the side, "Why would he wish to see me?"
Hermes shrugged, "He told me to tell you to see him as soon as you receive this message."
Artemis let out a light sigh and began making her way to find the lord of the sky. She had a lovely day hunting and was looking forward to some rest while in Olympus.
Artemis soon realized why Zeus had called for her once she passed Lady Hera's rooms. The chaste goddess stopped in her tracks when she heard loud shouting followed by the shattering of what Artemis could only assume was a vase. She vaguely heard Lady Demeter's voice as she tried calming Zeus's wife down, but Hera just continued shouting and cursing her husband.
Artemis shook her head, Lord Zeus must have had another affair with another mortal woman. She sighed and continued on her way until she reached her father's rooms.
The inside of the room was warm, and candles were dimly lit around the room. Zeus and a woman Artemis had never seen before stood over a small cradle.
Artemis cleared her throat, and Zeus and the mortal woman turned to face him. Zeus nodded, "Artemis, good you are here, you got my message I assume?"
Artemis gave him a nod; she could feel the woman's eyes watching her carefully. "You requested to see me father?"
Zeus nodded, "Yes, but first, Artemis, have you met Princess Alcmene?" he asked indicating to the fair haired woman who was still staring at her with an intense gaze.
Artemis shook her head, "No."
Zeus frowned, "Oh, well, she is the mother of my son."
"If you do not mind me asking Lord Zeus, but why am I here?" Artemis asked bluntly.
"We have asked you here in hopes that you will bless our child my lady." Alcmene answered. Her voice was nasally and Artemis had a strong urge to shoot her.
Zeus nodded, "Come see him. He will make an exceptional god one day."
Artemis frowned at the older god's obvious fondness over the boy, but proceeded over to the cradle to view the infant she was being asked to bless.
The baby, who had been smiling just moments before, frowned when it saw Artemis. Artemis frowned as well, though she was the patron goddess of children, she found an instant disliking towards this child. The baby's eyes were very dark, and seemed to glare up at her through short blonde lashes.
"Well, Lady Artemis, isn't he beautiful?" Alcmene asked in her nasally voice.
"It looks as though it was possessed by Hades." Artemis answered coldly causing Alcmene to let out a sob.
Zeus glared at his daughter, "Artemis."
Artemis ignored his glare, "Seeing as the child is my father's, I will bless your child." She said to the weeping Alcmene.
Alcmene glanced up through tear-stained lashes, and hastily bowed on her knees and kissed Artemis's feet. Artemis frowned and moved away from the praising mortal.
"Stand up Alcmene."
Alcmene nodded and hastily stood up and walked over to Zeus's side, he smiled and wrapped his arm around her.
Artemis tried to ignore the repulsion she felt when she looked at the baby, as she prepared to give her blessing, "What is the baby's name?" she asked, avoiding looking at both Zeus and Alcmene.
"Hercules." Zeus answered softly as he stared fondly at Alcmene and the baby.
That night, Zeus and Alcmene had awoken to find Hercules playing with two dead serpents in his cradle. He had been saved by Artemis's blessing…
"You look younger than the last time I saw you." Hercules said casually, as if he was engaging in a conversation with an old friend.
Artemis glared at him, "I tend to get that a lot."
Hercules nodded, "Well, you must be curious as to how I'm back."
Artemis shook her head, "I could honestly care less." She answered in a bored tone even though she was very curious as to why and how he was back.
Hercules frowned as if he was offended, "Really? You aren't curious in the slightest? It's a very interesting tale; I'm surprised you wouldn't like to hear it."
Artemis shrugged, "I'll pass."
"Aren't you at least curious as to hear all that has happened to me after I died?"
"Not really, I don't intend on hearing your petty excuse for committing suicide." Artemis answered coolly.
"You know damn well that I never killed myself." Hercules growled.
Almost fifteen years after the young Hercules had killed the two serpents, Artemis was walking alone in a forest along the edge of Crete. She had been hunting after a wild boar that had been rampaging through Crete, only to have it so narrowly escape her. She replayed the hunt over and over again in her head, memorizing every small mistake she had made while on the chase.
Suddenly a cry of distress broke her train of thoughts. It was a female cry, and it sounded like the cry of her lieutenant Aella. Rushing towards the sound of the cry, Artemis nearly ran into a young man around fifteen or sixteen years of age, not looking much older than the goddess appeared to look.
Artemis instantly drew her long silver bow and aimed it at the male intruder; his startling dark eyes looked slightly familiar. "Who are you male, and what are you doing in these woods?"
The boy smirked at her, "So you are a hunter as well? I ran into one of your little friends just a ways back. She did not seem to agree with me and was quite rude. Not to worry hunter, I taught her some manners."
Artemis's eyes widened a fraction and she prepared to release her arrow when the boy stopped her, "I would not recommend doing that huntress, for I am Hercules, the son of Zeus, and if you were to strike me dead, Zeus would instantly strip you of life and send you to Tartarus."
"He would not do so to his own daughter." Artemis answered.
Hercules gave her a cocky grin, "I do not know he seems to especially favor me, maybe if he stripped you of your immortality I would be permitted to take your place as a god."
Before Artemis could answer, she heard another distressed cry from her lieutenant. Artemis ran away from Hercules and found Aella lying in the center of a clearing.
Aella's face and arms were bloody and a large gash ran across the length of her chest. "My lady… the boy… he… he," she let out a ragged cough as she struggled for air.
Artemis silenced her, "Shhh, Aella you will be fine." Artemis said in almost a pleading tone.
"I'm sorry my lady." Aella winced as she took her last shuttering breath before she died.
Artemis closed her eyes and let a small tear be shed for her departed friend. She then whispered out a blessing ensuring her trip to Elysium quick and painless…
A few years later, Artemis heard from Hermes that Hercules had gotten married to a woman by the name of Meagre. They had a family, and that was the last Artemis heard of Hercules until one night, Artemis heard three desperate prayers for her.
The first was from Meagre, and the other two were from Hercules's children. They prayed for her to save them from Hercules who had gone mad and was trying to strangle all of them.
When Artemis arrived at the home of the family, she found a much older Hercules huddled in a corner surrounded by three mangled bodies.
To atone for his crime, Apollo ordered Hercules to perform Twelve Labors that would benefit human kind. It was then that Artemis encountered Hercules for the third time.
She had been walking calmly through the forests of Cerynaea. A small group of hunting dogs followed her around happily, and she played with the golden hinds native only to the forest. She smiled as her favorite; a young fawn that she named Callidora pranced around her feet and chewed at her dress.
Suddenly, the snap of a twig startled the hinds away. Artemis went to investigate what had made the sound, when she heard the sharp twang of an arrow being released.
Artemis raced back to the edge of a river to see her fawn, her little Callidora shot in the leg and lying limply on the ground. Artemis rushed to her little fawn's side, but was instantly shoved away by a pair of strong hands.
Hercules stood over her. When he recognized the goddess he smirked, "Ah, Lady Artemis, I hope I have not disturbed you."
"Why have you shot my fawn?" Artemis asked in a dangerous tone.
Hercules frowned, "Why, my beautiful goddess, do you not know? I must bring back a golden deer to King Eurystheusas part of the twelve labors I am to perform."
"You will release my fawn or you will feel my wrath Hercules, I do not care if you are a son of Zeus of not, you will pay the price."
Hercules frowned, "What if, I bring it to King Eurystheus and as soon as he sees it, I release it back into this forest."
Artemis frowned and agreed, but little did she know that as soon as the King saw that hind, Hercules would sacrifice her fawn to her Zeus. When Artemis told him of the deal she and Hercules had, Zeus had told her that it had been sacrificed justly and that there were many hinds in Cerynaea to replace the one she lost.
Almost a year later, Artemis heard of Hercules name once again. He had completed the Twelve Labors and was treated almost as a god. Artemis had been exploring around the Garden of the Hesperides. According to Hermes, one of the Hesperides had been kicked out from the garden; she had been shamed for helping out a hero. It wasn't until Artemis stumbled across a young girl, somewhere between the age of fourteen and sixteen, did she believe Hermes rumor.
The girl had long dark hair and olive skin; she looked like a Persian princess from the east. She had obviously been crying, her face was blotchy and her eyes were puffy.
Artemis knelt beside the girl, "What is your name?"
The girl sniffed, "My name is Zoë. Zoë Nightshade."
Artemis nodded, "Well Zoë, why are you here by yourself. Why are you not in the Garden of the Hesperides?"
Zoë sniffed again, "I have deceived thy father to help a man by the name of Hercules collect a golden apple. My father removed my immortality as a Hesperide, and as soon as Hercules had his apples, he left me here to die. I have no where to go."
Artemis frowned; Hercules was going to feel her vengeance eventually. "Zoë, my name is Artemis, I am the goddess of the hunt and moon. How would you like to be my lieutenant for my hunters?"
Zoë agreed and the two became fast friends. Zoë forgot about Hercules, and for a while Artemis did too, that is until she met Orion.
Artemis and Orion had been seeing each other for almost a year when Hercules by accident discovered their secret. He told Apollo, and enraged about his sister's secret meeting with the son of Poseidon, Apollo tricked Artemis into shooting her one and only lover.
Hercules had confronted her after his death, and he mocked her openly, it was then that she planned her revenge.
It was a late night, and Artemis knew just where Hercules was going to be. She met him in a small forest outside of Athens…
"Oh really, because how I remember, you killed yourself." Artemis snapped at him, coming back to the present.
Hercules growled at her and pulled out a large dagger, "Oh really, so this doesn't look at all familiar to you?"
"That was the knife you used to murder Aella with." Artemis answered calmly.
Hercules face melted into a horrific snarl, "You also used this gods-damned knife to murder me with!"
Hercules had smirked, "Lady Artemis, what pleasure brings you to see me in these secluded woods in the middle of the night." He asked seductively.
Artemis put on a fake smile, "I was just wondering what you were doing here."
Hercules frowned, "I was just thinking."
Artemis nodded, and she reached for his knife, he caught her wrist, "What are you doing."
Artemis just put on a playful smile as she pulled her hand free, "I was just admiring your beautiful dagger." She said as she began to trace lines on his chest with the blade.
Hercules smirked, "It is very wonderful is it not? It was a gift from my father, forged by the Cyclops."
Artemis nodded, "You must be a very lucky demigod." And she leaned in roughly causing the blade to plunge into his heart.
Artemis removed her hands from the knife, they were stained red with his blood but she didn't care, she had gotten rid of the being who had caused her and so many of her loved ones pain. He would die very quickly.
Hercules let out a wheezy breath as his hands reached up to the knife and pulled it out of his chest. He sunk to the ground with the dagger in his hands.
Later that night, Artemis cleaned the blood off of her hands and dress, no one would suspect anything. The next day, a nymph had found his body, and though Zeus and a few of the other gods mourned, Artemis was relieved, he couldn't come back to torture her any more. No longer would he hurt Zoë or tug on her father's heartstrings to get what he wanted.
She had told no one of her atrocity. No one knew that she had killed Hercules other than herself and Hercules himself. She never even told her brother. The only other secret she had ever kept from him. She had assumed it would be forgotten and no one would ever find out…
Artemis said nothing as he examined the knife. It wasn't until he laughed that she grew nervous, "Zeus will be so pleased to see his favorite child again."
"You were never his favorite." Artemis said honestly.
"Please, it's not like you were ever his favorite. And Zeus loves me more than Athena anyway. Athena may be his favorite daughter, but fathers always love their sons more so than their daughters. And I know Zeus; along with the other Olympians will be curious to find out how I died. And now I can tell them. For so long I've wanted to tell them, and now I can." He laughed again, "You know, I'm curious to see Zeus's reaction when I tell him that it was you who killed me. Well one way to find out. I'm going to tell him tomorrow." Hercules smirked, "by the way, good luck trying to kill me this time, Zeus will find out either way Artemis." He winked at her, "See you tomorrow."
Tell me what'cha think.. Should I continue or just go back to just doing my series? Reviews are appreciated... Thanks!
~ArtemisFrimm (gobble gobble :)