Prologue

Ares, Father of Victory.

Know by Many Names.

Leader of Men.

Lord of Dance.

And Ares of the Mighty Heart.

Ares, the Greek God of War who is better known as the Roman god named Mars. Ares, who became the Greek god of war, had a wretched childhood. The only son of the mighty Zeus, ruler of the Olympians, and his wife Hera, Ares was hated and uncared for by his father from the moment he was born and was barely tolerated from then on. Perhaps Zeus just couldn't warm up to the little guy because he hadn't had a part in Ares' conception or his birth.

Hera, with the help of a magical herb, had managed to 'impregnate herself' without the help of Zeus or any man, a process called parthenogenesis. Hera had done this to even the playing field with her husband for having given birth to Dionysus by himself. A short version of that story: Semele, one of Zeus' many lovers, lay dying while pregnant with Zeus' son Dionysus. With the help of Hermes, Zeus removed the unborn child and implanted him under the skin of his thigh where he remained until he was ready to be born. For whatever reason, Zeus failed to relate with his son Ares.

Zeus was not particularly concerned when the boy went missing a few years later and didn't put much effort looking for the poor boy. It turns out, the young Ares had been taken by two playmates, the giant Aloadai twins, who had caught him and locked him in a bronze jar. Ares stayed captive in the bronze jar, almost losing his mind in captivity, until the stepmother of the rambunctious twins figured out what had happened and told Zeus' assistant, Hermes, who was able to release Ares from the jar. After this happened Hera decided that Ares' might be better off staying somewhere else and arranged for him to live with Priapus, one of the minor deities. Priapus trained the young Ares in the art of dancing, and, later, in the martial arts.

Even though he was well-trained and served as the god of war, Ares wasn't that great a fighter and lost many of his battles, especially those involving his half-sister and arch-enemy Athena, who was the goddess of wisdom as well as the goddess of war (not to mention being Daddy's favorite). Ares represented war preformed 'up close and personal', hand to hand combat, and the frenzy of battle and bloodlust. Athena and Zeus, superbly rational, favored 'war at a distance', strategic planning, playing according to the 'rules of the game', cold and calculating by comparison.

Ares style was instinctual, passionate, and primitive...not destined to make him appear heroic in the eyes of a culture that valued reason and moderation. There were other reasons as well: The Greek god Ares, the god least favored by the citizens of Greece and by his parents (Zeus and his wife Hera) was seen by the ancient Greeks as a mercenary warrior, filled with a blood lust that could not be appeased, and a fickle god as well . . . one who would fight for either side just to have a chance to vent his rage.

Ares' unpopularity was probably inevitable, given that the Greeks of that time were mostly involved in petty wars amongst themselves, wars where allegiances were unclear and shifted frequently. Any god of war would have found it very difficult to please everyone in that situation. It's easy to see why Ares' other incarnation, as Mars, the Roman God of War, liked much better - the Roman viewpoint was no doubt influenced by the fact that Rome was usually at war with foreign powers so that a god of war could be someone that could be worshipped and viewed as heroic, one always battling for a cause. During the Trojan War Ares fought on the side of the Trojans against the Greeks, as a show of support for his lover Aphrodite who had set the war in motion.

This did not win him any points with the other Olympians who, except for Apollo, supported the Greeks. He charged at Athena who was taunting him about it and she sedately picked up a rock and smashed him over the head with it, stopping his charge. Athena also convinced one of the Greek warriors, to wound Ares in the side during the battle and Ares bellowed so loudly in pain and rage that the earth shook. He complained to Zeus about Athena's embarrassing him on the battlefield, and Zeus dismissively called him a whine who enjoyed nothing but brawling. Ares, rarely went out of his way to come to the aid of his fellow Olympians. But once, bored with the endless petty wars of the Greeks, he decided to rescue Hades who was being held captive by King Sisyphus.

And no one every doubted that Ares had courage! But what of his loves? Ares never married, although he had over twenty lovers who bore him children. And apparently his love affairs weren't "one night stands" but were long lasting relationships because many of them bore him several children. Unlike the other Greek gods, Ares did not rely on tricks or kidnapping to establish his love affairs. Ares is best known for his long-term love affair with the goddess Aphrodite, the goddess of romance and beauty. His long love affair with Aphrodite led to the birth of four children-their daughter, Harmonia later became the mother of the Amazons, a tribe of fearsome warrior women.

So important was she to Ares that, when she fell in love with the beautiful Adonis, Ares was so overcome with jealousy and rage that he turned himself into a wild boar and killed his rival - the only time he was known to battle disguised in another form. The union of Ares and Aphrodite, the original masculine man and the sex kitten, seemed unlikely to endure for long, but it did. Ares added to the passionate intensity and Aphrodite taught him to accept and relish the defenseless parts of him.

This is a story about one of the daughters of Ares, Lissy Torres. It follows her journey of how she reacts to the Greek Gods and Goddesses being real. How she deals with them and their 'unfairness' as Lissy puts it. Follow Lissy on this bumpy adventure, laugh as she makes friends, frown as she makes enemies, and even blush as she develops the occasional crush.