Chapter 1:

He's going to be sick. Like a pathetic mortal, he feels his heartbeat – it's pounding in his ears and chest relentlessly. His mouth has gone dry and suddenly the back of his neck is drenched in sweat. For a quick moment, he wonders if this is what mortals feel when they die. He runs a hand through his black, disheveled hair – he feels like he's going to faint.

How this girl could make him so weak – with a simple toss of her hair, no less – is a mystery to him. I'm getting soft. Weak. She is standing with her mother; Hermes is fluttering around her like an annoying pest. She is so beautiful. Her emerald eyes look up, accidently locking with his and he suddenly feels very exposed. He quickly looks away and moves to head outside, but is stopped by a heavy pat on his shoulder. He feels the back of his head pound.

"Mother, who is that god over there?" Persephone asks, her eyes curious as she nods in his direction.

Demeter is slightly distracted, enjoying a conversation with Athena. She smiles lazily and asks, "Who again, my dear Kore?"

Persephone points, "That man there; Zeus is talking to him."

Demeter frowns. "Kore, my silly girl," she laughs uncomfortably, "that's Hades, Lord of the Underworld. I'm surprised he's here, really. Your pointing him out startled me."

"I haven't met him yet," Persephone says, "you should introduce me."

"Kore -"



"It'd be rude not to mother," Persephone says, crossing her arms.

"Kore, I – Kore! Persephone, wait!" But it was too late; Persephone is marching across the room. She wants to meet this 'Lord of the Underworld,' but more importantly, she wants to ask why he has been staring at her. She's been feeling someone's eyes boring at the back of her head the entire night – enough is enough.

Hades tenses under his brother's hand. He holds back a startled jump as Zeus pats his back.

"I was surprised to see you here, Hades. Leaving so soon?"

Hades regains his composure and straightens up. Enough with this foolishness. I am no weak mortal swayed by lust. I am not my brother.

"Zeus, you invited me. And I am sorry to say, but I really must be going. I'm rather busy, you know."

Zeus laughs, "What's one more soul to send to Tartarus? Or a thousand? Stay, drink, brother! Enjoy the festivities." Zeus looks at his brother's icy blue eyes for any sort of indication of agreement; instead, he sees his pupils dilate, taking over the blue and turning his eyes into black orbs. Zeus pauses, "Hades, are you alright?"

Hades isn't listening, though. He is frozen in place as his beautiful temptress makes her way towards them. Towards him.