Disclaimer: I do not know Power Rangers and this story is part of a challenge by WolfsbaneX, so I also owe credit to him as well for helping me with this idea. Thanks, Wolf!
Prologue: He Who Feels Slighted
It had been an uneventful millennium.
That is, it had been for him, a once proud figure, now locked away in the deep chasms of Heaven, held there by the power of the stars, specifically those that formed the cursed constellation that bore his name.. On the earth below, humans reveled it for they were deceived in thinking that it glorified him, Hercules, son of Jupiter, king of the gods, and Alcmene, wisest and most beautiful of all mortal women.
In reality, it was his prison, were he had remained since his death. He was sentenced here by Juno, forever alone in darkness. He had been made immortal after his death, and was welcome into Heaven by Jupiter. However, Hercules took one look at Juno, and his mind raced. He cursed her to her face right then, the sight of her bringing back the pain of seeing what she had done against him and his family, how she tore them apart and made him suffer.
Right then, Juno declare him not fit to live amongst the gods for his treatment and call the others to lock him away here amongst the stars. Through her endless persuasions, almost everyone gave in, except for Athena and a few other lesser gods, but they were outvoted.
So, here he was, his prison took no physical form, so as not to be seen by eyes other than the gods. Instead, his spirit was bound to the stars, floating amongst them in what was could only be described as dark, lifeless room, where the silence drove him mad. He was forced to look down at the planet of the mortal humans below as a reminded of his life, vile in Juno's mind.
He sneered at it, only the size of a speck of dirt thanks to the distance. His guards, hand-picked to torture him daily, had told them of how Juno swore to smear his name across the ages, for he was the child of Jupiter and another woman. Oh, how did Juno hate the children of Jupiter that weren't her own. So, she personally made sure that history remember her power over him, how she drew him into madness, how she made him slaughter his own sons and the first of his wives.
Oh, if only he could escape the prison, then he would seek revenge on the queen goddess. She let the constellation survive, under the disguise of homage to him. However, to Hercules, it's existence was only a daily reminded of how his heroics were passed down as only myth, where the slaughter of his sons and the misfortunes of his life were surely to be remember alongside them for all time. He could see the smirk on Juno's face as she would see it and be remind of the final triumph she now had over him.
Now, millennium after millennium of being stuck in dark solitude, the fact that his mother, now only a spirit, still treasured him and tried her best to let good light be shed on his character, was only a mere footnote, a fact that no longer bore hope on his case. He would never be free, not by her hands, not by Juno's or any god, and certainly not of his own.
However as Hercules turned to shift his thoughts on some else, a whisper came into the dark space. "Hercules, bound by Juno and the other gods, what price would you pay to be free?"
At first, the demi-god thought it to be one of the guards, so he shouted out. "Go away, vile creature in Juno's service! I thought you had left! Haven't you mocked me enough for one day?"
But the calm voice whispered, "You have been in here too long, uncle. Do you not even recognize the voice of your own nephew and companion, who stood by you against the mighty Hydra?"
"Iolaus? Hercules replied surprised. "You. How are you even here? You are a mortal, why are you not in the underworld?"
"I have tricked Pluto into letting me out. How, I will explain in due time. But for now, we must hurry. Uncle, I know how Juno has dealt harshly with you, mocking you, sending you into this infernal prison of stars. However, I and your sons have gathered the power to not only free you, but let you have your vengeance on the Queen of Heaven and on all the gods if you so choose. And it will come from the mighty Pluto and Jupiter themselves!"
Hercules heard the plan and sneered. He would be free and Juno, no, all the gods that consented to lock him her and let her shame him, would pay dearly. Even the mortals themselves he would punish, for doubtless believing the tales that they let stand for history and mock him with. " Iolaus, free me! Let your uncle really give the gods something to tell for all their days."
With that, a thunderous boom came from beyond the chasm, and Hercules felt his bonds break. He roared as the stars relented their hold on him. Suddenly, a dark fog filled the chasm and enveloped the once heroic demi-god. Then the voice of Iolaus whispered one more time. "Onward! To Earth, where the mighty revenge of Hercules shall begin!" With that declaration the fog dissipated, and nothing remained in the chasm, which now grew as silent as ever.
On the planet that bore Hercules' hatred, a gentle spirit wandered a cavern deep in Italy, far from the modern, populated cities that now popped up along the countryside. It took the form of a elderly female woman, whose age only complimented her beauty rather than stagger it. She was forever dress in a white linen dress, tied with a simply golden belt. It was night-time and she made her way to the entrance to the cavern. Once there, she set her eyes on one constellation in particular, as she did every night for the past four thousand years , the one that held her son. However, a dark cloud sat motionless in the sky, blocking her view. However, that was it, It only covered the one constellation.
Before her mind could react further to the odd site, suddenly a wind whipped up around the cave opening. A light flashed and there before her, a helmeted owl appear. The woman recognized it s significance immediately. Athena . the spirit whispered and kneeled.
A strong female voice rose from the owl." Alcmene, wisest of all mortal women, your son is escaping his prison. The cloud in the sky that blocks it form view is a sign of these for certain. How, I do not yet know. However, it is likely that he will come to Earth for revenge."
Alcmene nodded as her heart sank. She knew of the rumors that Juno still tortured him, yet her mortal spirit was powerless to do anything if those rumors were true.
"If he does, we must be ready. As we speak, all of the gods are being informed. However, the Earth will need new heroes to battle him along side the gods, should he come. Go to Rome, and find 5 youths that a resting in an inn that pays honor to me. You will know it by the winged creature which you see it before you. Keep an eye on them for me for the time being. I am going to gather the beasts who will help us against Hercules."
"Beasts?" Alcmene questioned in a whisper. However, she would not get her answer. Upon the owl's last words, the wind died and the light disappeared as did the owl.
However, Alcneme did not question the matter more and, after some preparations for the journey, headed silently towards Rome.
A/N: I introduce our main villain, Hercules, first this time to contrast my other story, O.R.E, which introduce heroes first. I know that I didn't introduce any rangers here, but I wanted this first chapter to really tell Hercule's story and why he descends from hero to villain.