Author's Note #1:
This is a fanfiction completely different than my usual H&P. I have written specially for rorozoro18 from Tumblr. She's an artist who had created her own Hades and Persephone webcomic.
This fanfiction is based on a two-page webcomic she had done on Hades and Persephone, about what if the two of them were mortals and how they would meet. Roro chose the setting of World War 2, with Hades being a German soldier and Persephone being a French waitress.
The story begins with Hades, a high-ranking German soldier who is upset and does not wish to be part of the war. One day, after the Germans invaded France, he visited a small diner in a tiny French town. All the other customers run away in fear at the sight of him. It was in that diner he meets Persephone, a kind and warm-hearted French waitress who does not seem to be afraid of him. There is an immediate attraction between the both of them.
Roro had requested that if anyone could write, maybe a fanfiction could be written about the comic. I loved the comic and so I told her that I would do it. I would be sending Roro the link to this fanfic.
So, hope you guys enjoy the story!
The very second they looked up when they heard the bell above the door jingle, the very second they saw him entering through the door, the very second they noticed the dull green uniform he donned, all abandoned their places from various corners of the small diner and fled.
As all of the French patrons ran, they could only hope that he wouldn't do anything to hurt them. They wished to be spared from the dangerous power of the invading Germans for another day. They wished to live and be with their beloved ones for a little while longer. They did not wish to get hurt. Even if the newcomer was just one German soldier, they did not want to give him a reason to hurt them.
But they failed to see that he wasn't actually going to do anything to them.
As they ran, fearing for their lives, they took no notice of him nonchalantly ignoring all of them and simply taking a seat on one of the bar stools. In fact, he barely even glanced at any of them when they frantically rushed past him. With his eyes hidden by the shadows that were casted by the visor of his schirmmütze, they just could not see that he simply did not care.
The door closed shut immediately after the last French had ran out, leaving the bell jingling rapidly before becoming still and silent. The air in the small diner too was still and silent. Even his breathing was so soft that it could not be heard.
After a few heartbeats, he unrolled the paper scroll he had with him, which was some sort of tourist information of the French town he and his fellow men were currently dispatched in. He had picked it up when he left base to go for a leisure walk, wanting to read up more on the town that was to be his new 'home' for a few months or so.
He allowed his dark brown eyes to gaze at the words and pictures that were printed on the yellowed roll of paper. Then, with one hand, he took off his patrol cap and set it down on the table, revealing his head of short blackish-brown hair that was matted down due to the weight of the bulky schirmmütze.
With his eyes revealed, he allowed himself to gaze around the diner. It was nothing fancy. In fact, it was kind of plain. The walls were painted a simple pale blue, a floor made up of dark oakwood boards, windows with pale yellow curtains lining up the walls, alongside the four-seat booths. There was no decorations save for some small vases of flowers on each table booth and lining up the bar table.
His eyes looked upwards at the wall in front of him, where a pendulum wall-clock hung with the second-hand ticking away. It was a quarter past three now. He had to be back at base in an hour or so. He would sure as hell get issued a strict warning from his commanding officials if he was even just a minute late, despite the fact that he held one of the highest ranks in his company, all thanks to his family's wealth and power.
He sighed as he thought of his family back home in Germany. If he had a choice, he wouldn't have joined the regime. He would just like to stay at home, help his father and mother out in their successful family banking business, be the good older brother figure to his younger siblings. Maybe, if luck was on his side, he could meet a nice girl, get married and start a family of his own.
But his parents wanted him to fight in this war. 'Fight for the goodness of our blessed Germany' they had said. How sad he had felt when they wished for him to do so, but he could not bear the thought of disappointing them. So he followed their wishes and joined the army. He became one of the most influential soldiers and rose up the ranks quickly. But despite the overwhelming success and fame he gained within the army, he felt completely empty on the inside.
He did not know what exactly he was fighting for. He bet he wouldn't even believe in it if he knew. He was unhappy.
That one word was spoken by a very soft voice, but it had managed to give him a slight and unnoticeable jolt to his heart. He did not expect to hear another person's voice. After nearly all the patrons had ran off in panic when they first saw him, he had assumed he was the only one left.
He tore his eyes away from the clock in the direction of the voice. What – or who - he saw made his heart stop.
Standing on the other side of the counter was a woman. Judging by the rose pink uniform she wore, she could only be a waitress in this diner.
He could not help but be struck by how beautiful she was. She had a heart-shaped face with smooth and flawless skin the color of peaches. Her eyes were the color of a bright spring green and framed by thick lashes. She had hair the color of sunshine gold, with a length of it piled up into a hair snood at the back of her head and two wavy strands adorning the front sides of her face. There was pale pink flower tucked behind her right ear, being the only decoration to compliment her hairstyle. Her nose was cute and dainty and her full lips were pulled into a beautiful smile.
He couldn't help but notice that her figure was curvy in a sexy way, but he tried his best to not let his eyes wander. He kept his gaze fixed on her pretty face.
She remained standing there with a smile on her face and a serving dish in her hands. Her wide eyes swept over the empty diner, taking in the complete lack of activity.
"You sure know how to clear out a place," she commented jokingly, her eyes becoming fixed on his once again.
He became confused. Just a few minutes ago, he had scared off a handful of people just by his presence. But here was a girl, who seemed to be the only one in the diner besides him, standing in front of him with a smile on her face, talking to him as though he was just some sort of regular customer.
Did she not see the uniform he was wearing? Did she not notice his schirmmütze with the eagle insignia that was resting on the counter right in front of her? Did she not care that she was speaking to a German soldier who was one of those who invaded her French hometown?
She quirked a perfect eyebrow at him curiously.
He got out of his stupor and cleared his throat when he realized he had been staring at her for the past few heartbeats. When he felt alright enough to speak normally, he said, "I am afraid I cleared out your diner. Will you still serve me?"
He was half-afraid that she was going to become angry. Why wouldn't she? It was because of his presence her customers were all shooed off. He doubted anyone else would come in for a while. It would be because of him she wouldn't earn enough for the day.
To his shock, her smile only turned wider. In her smile and the brightness of her eyes, he could see that for some reason, she didn't seem to mind that he was the only one here.
With her smile still on her full rosy lips, she simply replied, "Wouldn't say 'no' to a handsome face like yours."
He didn't expect himself to chuckle, but he did. Her cheeky comment had actually put a smile on his face. He could feel that this smile was real, not like all those empty smiles he gave to his comrades as they celebrated another takeover of a small town or when he followed them to taverns at night to show that he was enjoying himself when actually he was not. He was surprised that she was able to actually make him smile for real with just one sentence.
He shielded his lips with the knuckles of his right hand as he let out a small, hearty laugh. Her smile turned into a small grin, revealing a set of pearly whites, and she too giggled heartily in unison.
His right hand moved to support the side of his face as his elbow planted itself atop the counter. With his head tilted to the side, he replied back with a cheeky smile, "Well, good. Now I won't have to share your beauty with anyone else in the room."
Immediately, a bright blush bloomed on her cheeks. Her smile turned into one of utter shyness and flattery. She turned her head away from him and shyly tucked a lock of her blonde hair behind her ear. He noticed her slightly pinching her bottom lip with her top row of perfectly straight and white teeth, and the sight of her all shy and flattered only made him smile even more.
"You sure know how to flatter a girl," she commented before handing him a sheet of paper in her hands, which he realized was the menu.
He took it from her gently, saying thanks with another smile. She smiled back before moving off to the table to clear the dishes that were left behind by the last customers.
His dark brown eyes scanned through the listings of dishes on the menu, but he couldn't help but wander off to see what the pretty waitress was doing. He secretly watched as she piled dishes up expertly and wiped the tables thoroughly clean. After a while, he forgot about the menu in his hand and the scroll of information he had brought with him and just focused all his attentions solely on the lone waitress.
Suddenly, she looked up at him from wiping the table, her spring green eyes immediately coming in contact with his dark brown ones. He jumped slightly and turned his head away immediately, forcing himself to read the menu once again. He felt flustered and nervous that she had caught him staring. It was so un-gentlemanly of him! What a way to leave a good impression! he thought to himself sarcastically in dismay.
But when she heard her laughter, he began to relax slightly at the thought that he had managed to get her to laugh and smile once again.
When she had cleared out the dishes and sent it to the kitchen for washing, she came up to him once again and asked for his order. He hadn't really paid much attention on the menu, being too focused on her. So he chose the first thing he saw, which was a jambon et fromage sandwich.
She left for the kitchen once again to fetch his order. As he waited, he began to wonder whether there were others in there – doing their own work as they hid from him – or if she really was the only one running the diner. He didn't pondered on that thought for too long, because she had already come out with his order in her hand a few minutes later.
"Here's your sandwich," she said with the same bright smile still on her lips. She put the plate down carefully in front of him. "Bon apétit."
"Thank you," he replied with his own smile.
The two sandwiches on his plate appeared to be normal ham and cheese sandwiches, with cut-up baguettes as the bread pieces. He took a bite of it and was surprised by how delicious it was. He ate slowly to savor the delicious flavor of the French sandwich.
When he had finished his first sandwich, he was suddenly pulled away into conversation with the waitress.
"Tell me about yourself."
He looked up to her, who was leaning against the wall beside the kitchen door. Without hesitation, he asked, "What would you like to know?"
She shrugged her shoulders. "Anything you think you want to talk about."
He thought about what to say to her. He knew he did not want to converse with her about his life in the army. Maybe talk to her about something he really wishes. She seemed nice enough to talk to about that.
"If I could, I would get the hell out of the army and just go back to Germany. Help out in my family's banking business. Take care of my parents and my little brothers and sisters."
Her eyes glinted in amazement. "Wow, a banking business?" she said in awe. "You must be loaded."
He shrugged. "I guess I am but I don't really boast about it a lot."
She looked down at the floor as she looked deep in thought. "A man with a handsome face and plenty of cash usually has girls. Tell me. Do you have a special girl back home in Germany? Or are you married?"
He cocked his head to the side, quirking his eyebrows curiously at her question. She seemed nervous to have asked such a thing and tried to avert her eyes from his gaze.
He shook his head. "Never really had the time for that. I'm too busy taking care of my family. They're the most important thing to me now. Love can wait for a better timing. But I really do hope to settle down and start a family in the future." Then, he asked, "And how about you?"
She met his gaze once again, her eyes friendly and warm.
"I don't have any siblings and my father left when I was still a small child," she told him. "I live with my mother. We used to own a flower shop together. It was a small but successful shop. The money we earned from bouquet sales was always more than enough for us."
Suddenly, her voice took on a sadder tone and she let out a sigh. "Unfortunately, it got destroyed on the night of the first invasion. We lost everything in a snap. Mama got upset, and she became terrified of going out on the streets. She didn't want me to get a new job because she worries I would get hurt, but I had to make money somehow to support the both of us. So, that's why I'm here."
He immediately felt a heavy burden on his shoulders and in the pit of his stomach. He couldn't fight the overwhelming guilt he felt when she told him about her flower shop. He wasn't the one who did it, he was very sure about that, but it was who he was in allegiance with that did.
"I'm so sorry," he murmured guiltily, the fingers of his hand pushing about at his last sandwich.
She gave him a small smile and shook her head. "It's alright, monsieur. I don't blame you."
She got off the wall and walked forward until she was standing right in front of him at the other side of the counter.
"You're really different, if I do say so."
Confused by her question, he raised an eyebrow and inquired, "In what way different?"
"I'm not really too sure myself, but it kind of has to do with how you behave."
As he picked up the second and last sandwich with his right hand, he asked, "What is different about the way I behave?"
While he ate up his last jambon et fromage, she began to twiddle her thumbs and her eyes looked as though she was trying to find the right words.
"While your other comrades roam the streets proud and arrogant, you seem more the quieter type who doesn't gloat and boast. I saw how the other customers ran away when you came in. I knew all of them expected you to do something terrible. But you didn't. You just simply came in and took a seat. You didn't do anything to show who's in charge or whatever. You look civil and, for some reason, friendly. But yet, in some way, you seem kind of sad. So I thought I could give you some company while you're here."
He swallowed his food as he stared at her in awe. He was in shock by how he barely even knew this woman and she could already say things that would warm his heart.
How long had he not felt so comfortable in the presence of another? He thought of his family, who he had not seen in a year. He lost the comfort when he left his home. Even with fellow Germans as his comrades, he could not feel comfort.
But he could feel comfort in her, this simple French waitress. She made him feel welcomed. She made him smile. She made him laugh. She made him feel comforted.
After a few heartbeats of gazing into each other's eyes, he smiled.
"Thank you, fräulein. I don't think I've ever met a person as kind as you before. It was an absolute honor to get to know you," he told her graciously.
She seemed surprised that he would say such a thing to her. But seeing his smile made her smile. She didn't know what, but there was something in this German man's personality – his kindness and his friendliness, to be more specific – that she really loved.
Suddenly, the clock chimed. Both of them looked at it and saw that it was exactly four o'clock.
He sighed sadly when he realized that it was about time he made his way back for base. With a heavy heart, he took out a wad of cash from his breast pocket and set a few notes down on the counter, right beside his now-empty plate.
"Leaving already?" she asked as he put on his schirmmütze and rolled up the paper he brought with him. He could immediately note the sadness that lingered in her question. He felt somewhat glad and slightly flattered to know that she was disheartened that he had to leave. But he felt the same way.
"Duty calls," he replied in a disheartened voice. He slid off from the bar stool and made his way to the door. But when he placed his hand on the door knob, he turned back to face her and saw that she was gazing at him.
"Fräulein, I don't believe I caught your name," he realized immediately. For a split second, he wanted to smack himself on the head. You talk to a girl for about forty-five minutes and you didn't get her name?! Idiot!
"My name is Hades König, if you would like to know. But please do feel free to just call me 'Hades'."
Her spring green eyes widened in realization of not telling him her name. Quickly, she walked towards him and, still with her bright smile, told him, "Nice to meet you, monsieur Hades. My name is Persephone LeFleur."
Persephone extended a hand and Hades knew she meant for a handshake. He took it into his with a gentle touch. But then, he surprised her by lifting it to his lips and planting a soft kiss on her knuckles.
"Persephone," he repeated in a sigh, tasting her name on his tongue. "A beautiful name for a beautiful woman."
He smiled when he saw a blush bloom on her cheeks once again. Although she looked really shy now, she still smiled brightly.
When he released her hand, he asked, "When may I see you again, fräulein Persephone?"
It was true. Hades wanted to see Persephone again. She was just about the first person he could actually consider a friend in a long time. He wasn't willing to forget about her so easily. He wanted to know more about her and spend some more time with her.
"I'm here at the diner every day from nine to five. You can drop by anytime you like," she informed him cheerily.
Feeling rest assured that he would still be able to see her, he finally bade her goodbye.
"Auf wiedersehen. Until next time, Persephone."
With the smile that never seemed to disappear from her lips, she bowed her head once in farewell.
"Au revoir. Until next time, Hades. It was really nice to know you."
Hades gave her one last smile before opening the door and exiting the diner.
As he walked away, his thoughts were all of warm, kind and gentle Persephone.
Author's Note #2:
schirmmütze (German) - a patrol cap worn by German soldiers in World War 2
jambon et fromage (French) - ham and cheese
monsieur (French) - sir
fräulein (German) - miss (young lady)
Auf wiedersehen (German) - Goodbye
Au revoir (French) - Goodbye
About Hades & Persephone in this story
Alright, most of all will notice that Roro's versions Hades and Persephone completely differs from mine. My version of Hadess tch black hair and eyes, while her version of Hades has dark brown hair and eyes. My version of Persephone has russet brown hair and amber eyes, while her version of Persephone has blonde hair and spring green eyes.
Since the story idea completely belongs to her (with me only adding a few plots of my own), so I would go for the use of her characters.
By the way, I have Hades the last name König, which is German for 'King', and Persephone the last name LeFleur, which is French for 'The Flower'.
What I think of the story
I think that World War 2 is a perfect setting for a mortal Hades and Persephone to meet. Just think of it. Their story of how they got together in the myth was pretty chaotic, but somehow they managed to find love in each other in the middle of the chaos.
What's more is the accurate symbolism of their roles in this story. Hades as both a god of the Underworld and a German soldier in this story is feared by all, even though he does not really care of what others think of him. Persephone, as both a minor goddess and a simple French girl in this story is able to see through what everyone sees him to be - an evil person - and is willing to accept him for who he is. I mean, she was the only person brave enough to talk to him because she could see in his eyes that he was different.
So, Roro. If you're reading this, I just want to say that it was fun writing this fanfiction and I hope to read more of your comics whenever you can update :)
For those who would like the link to the 2-paged comic this fanfiction was based on, please visit my profile page for the link.
German and French translation - Google Translate
Cover art and story idea - Rorozoro
Thank you for reading!
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