*throws hands up in the air* Oh good lord! Finally, I have been able to access a computer! For the past God knows how long, I havent been able to touch a keyboard. But now, at last, I can update ALL of my stories... except Aladdin and Cassim. Thats dead folks. But for all of you who know me, expect updates on all my others in the next few days!
Alelujah! I am alive! *shines like Jesus*
In the meantime, please, enjoy this BRAND NEW, HOT OFF THE PRESS, STORY!
Crime, I sound like Billy Mays. I hope my brother hasnt brought him back yet...
Moonlight streamed through the black archway; the entrance to Mt. Othyrs. A shadow stirred in the corner, and a white figure dashed across the threshold. It pressed itself the black marble pillars. A girl, clothed in white, peered her head from around the corner. Her dark hair was pulled back into a braid woven with silver, and her silver eyes gleamed in the moonlight. She clutched a readied bow in her hands, her fingers ready to draw back and release the arrow they held.
Artemis, goddess of the hunt, slowly crept her way into the ruins. She did not like this place. Once, this had been a dark place, the strong-hold of the Titans. She had been imprisoned here. She had lost her most trusted lieutenant here. It had been, and still was, a dark place.
Still, Artemis moved forward. The energy coming from this place was stronger, as strong as it had once been when the Titan's used it as their stronghold. She had pleaded with the Olympian Council to investigate, to do something. For some reason, they ignored here. Zeus said he could not feel anything. Nor could any of the other Gods. But Artemis felt it. She felt it like frozen ice pumping through her veins.
Here, this energy pulsed. Boom, ba-boom, boom, ba-boom. For Artemis, it felt almost familiar. She wasn't sure where though. Her feet brushed against the stones cluttered around the once grand temple. A slight wind brushed her face, and she knew she was close.
Millennia ago, the Earth had split from the Sky. However, these two jilted lovers still tried to be together in one place, on this mountain. However, they had to be kept back, for if they did join once more, the result might even kill the Gods. As punishment for aiding the Titans during the first War, Zeus has the titan Atlas imprisoned here, to forever hold up the Sky. A few years ago, Atlas had tricked Artemis in holding up to Sky, so she could not inform the Council of one of Kronos's schemes. Thanks to a son of Poseidon, Atlas was once more imprisoned, and a disaster was diverted. But at a terrible cost to Artemis.
Zoe; her lieutenant of her Hunters, had been killed. And while Artemis felt the Hunt was secure in the hands of Thalia, she longed for the days when Zoe was at her side.
But now, she hunted alone. She had to hunt alone, for this source. She would not risk the life of another Hunter. The wind grew stronger, and Artemis had to squint as dust and dirt was kicked around.
In the center of the room, what seemed like a small tornado came from the ceiling, swirling and moving, trying to force its way to the ground. This was the Sky, trying to rejoin with the Earth. And between them, was the figure keeping it back.
Artemis's grip on her bow slackened in surprise. That was not the voice of Atlas. It was much younger, and much more scared. She gingerly stepped forward, trying to see through the wind. A boy knelt beneath the tornado, with his hands up. His shoulders were braced, and the base of the cyclone pounded between his shoulders.
"Please, help me! I don't know how much longer I can hold it!"
The aura of power was stronger know. It made the hair on her graceful arms stand on end. As she got closer, Artemis could see the boy better. He wore a deer-skin tunic and sandals, and a quiver of arrows and a bow lay at his feet. His hair was dark, and his eyes were squeezed shut in agony.
"Where is Atlas?" Artemis asked, her eyes darting to the corner of the room. She readied her bow for any trickery that might ensnare her.
"I don't know." the boy said, gritting his teeth. "He tricked me. Told me... he wanted to see his daughters down the mountain. That he would come back."
Artemis frowned. "Then you are a fool, boy. Atlas has no intention of coming back."
Ba-boom boom. Ba-boom boom.
"Please..." the boy begged. His arms shook a little. "I can't hold it anymore. Its too heavy."
"Yes, you will. You know the consequences if you release it. Besides, you can't, even if you wanted to. That's the imprisonment." Artemis said, coolly. The boy would have to endure for his stupidity. She cursed him. Atlas was free once more because of a male's foolishness. This was why men could never be trusted with anything. She turned to leave, and only made it a few steps, before the boy cried out.
"Please! Don't leave! Help me! Lady Artemis, for the love of your son, help me, Mother!"
Artemis whirled around, her bow clattering to the floor, the same time the boy opened his eyes in plea. The moonlight gleamed off of his silver eyes as he stared into hers.
"Mother, help me!"
Ba-boom, ba-boom, ba-boom. She could feel it now. It came from him. It was her aura. her power. His heartbeat.
It was him. Her hidden sin.
Artemis rushed to the boy's side, kneeling next to him. Her hands reached up, grasping the Sky, taking most of the burden off of him. The weight of the Sky forced the goddess to kneel, straining with her shoulders braced. A wave of relief passed over the boy's face.
"Thank-you..." he whispered, letting go of the Sky. A heavier weight dropped onto Artemis now that she was the only one holding it. He rolled away, laying on his back, heaving with sweat rolling down his face as he stared up at the torrential sky. Artemis used every ounce of her strength to keep the sky up.
Slowly, the boy got up. He gave a few weak, hobbling steps towards Artemis, and then bent down and picked up the boy and quiver that lay where he was.
"Help me hold up the sky!" Artemis said. The boy shook his head.
"No... thank-you though, for making this so easy." he said. "It wasn't easy to hold that up. But now that you're here, everything is going according to plan." The boy gave a small, innocent smile. Artemis stared at him.
"You tricked me."
"Such an accusation. But yes, I did trick you. And like the rabbit is always snared by the wire, you fell for the trap that was meant to hold you." the boy said.
"Where is Atlas?" Artemis asked. The boy frowned.
"Always caring about other people, aren't you? Don't worry, he's not free. He failed Lord Kronos in the last war. He's safe and secure in Tartarus. I made sure of that personally..."
"My Hunters will come for me." Artemis said. The boy scowled.
"You don't get it, do you? You still don't get it." he said, as he strung his bow. His finger plucked the string experimentally. "Me. Here. Your son. Does that mean anything to you?" The boy asked.
"I have no son." Artemis said. The boy's nostrils flare.
"You gave birth to me! And then what did you do? Dumped me in a frigging orphanage!" the boy growled angrily. "I am your son." the boy said firmly. "You abandoned me. You left me. I didn't even know who my parents were till he told me."
"You were one of the Half-Bloods who sided with Kronos." Artemis said, with some realization. The boy just looked at her, like she was the stupidest thing he had ever seen.
"What? You think anybody else could've found out your little secrete?" he said. "Imagine my surprise. I was the son of a Goddess. My mother was Artemis, goddess of the Hunt. " the boy said. He then chuckled. "Honestly, it wasn't the fact that all this existed. Oh, there was more than enough proof for that. What I couldn't believed is that my mother was who they said she was." He waved a hand towards his ear, as if trying to remember something. "Oh right! She was suppose to be a eternal virgin! Whoops, looks like you messed up on that one Mom."
"Stop it!" Artemis said, as his words pierced her. She hadn't intended to fall in love with him. She didn't intend to give herself to a man. But how could she? He was the only one who had ever loved her trully.
The boy knelt infront of her, his head tipped to the side.
"Honestly? I don't care that you went back on your 'divine' word. That you broke an oath, whatever." the boy said with a small smile. "Because if you didn't, then I wouldn't be here."
"No, what bothers me the most is the question that's been bugging me for the last ten minutes. You see, I didn't really believe that you were my mother, or that you even had a son until about ten minutes ago. That's what this was about..." the boy said, gesturing to the Sky pressing down on Artemis's back. "Anybody else would've just walked away. Any other God wouldn't have cared. But it seems, dare I say it, you have some scrap of humanity left. This burden can't be forced upon anyone except Atlas. You decided to take the Sky up again, and free me of its burden." the boy said. He clapped his hands together and smiled. "So, now that this is out of the way, its time for twenty questions." he said. He pulled a silver hunting knife from Artemis's belt. It glowed white hot in his hands, burning his skin, but he didn't seem to care or notice. "Question Number One: Why did you abandon me?" he asked. Artemis didn't answer, and tried to stare right through him. The boy sighed, and put a hand clenching the dagger to his forehead in exasperation.
"Maybe I didn't make myself clear enough. Why did you..." he said, as he cut Artemis along the arm with her own knife. Golden immortal ichor, the blood of the Gods, ran down her arm. "...abandon me?"
Artemis cried out in pain. The boy frowned, and spun the knife in his hand.
"This going to be harder than I thought. So, let me try again." he said, raising the knife. "Why did you abandon me?" He brought it down on her. "Why did you abandon me?" Down again. "Why did you abandon me? Why did you abandon me? Why did you abandon me? Why did you abandon me?"
"I couldn't let anybody know!" Artemis screamed out finally, tears running down her face from the pain. She couldn't carry the Sky and deal with both the emotional and physical pain her son was causing her. The boy stopped, the knife raised in mid stab.
"What did you say?" he asked.
"I couldn't let anybody know..." Artemis sobbed.
"About my shame." she said, shaking underneath the weight of the Sky. The boy's face grew red.
"So, you cared more about your reputation as a Goddess than the well-being of your son." the boy said frowning.
"Did you not visit me, not send a sign, and not even give a damn about me for this same reason?" he asked. Silence. The boy shrugged and stabbed Artemis just below her near. She gave a scream and collapsed onto her shins.
"Were you ever going to acknowledge my existence?"
"N-no..." Artemis whispered, tears running down her face. The boy smiled.
"So you thought I was just going to disappear? Just, live out my life or get eaten by a monster? Is that it?" he asked. He held the knife thoughtfully to his chin. "Well, this is a little anti-climatic. You know, I was kinda hoping for some half-assed excuse like, it was for my own good or something." he spun the knife in his hand.
"You know, this would be the part in the movie where I say something incredibly bad-assed, and then cut your throat. Unfortunately, you're an immortal Goddess, and we need someone to hold up the Sky." the boy said, shrugging his shoulders. He knelt down infront of Artemis again.
"Mother, let me tell you something. Our past always comes back to haunt us. No matter what we do, those nightmares always come out of the shadows when we least expect them. Nothing ever dies or fades out of existence."
Artemis was crying now, sobbing quietly to herself. The boy gently took her by the chin, so she'd look at him.
"Mother, there is always forgiveness for those who ask for it. But first, you need to earn it. This burden..." he said, nodding towards the Sky, "...is but the first of your repentance." he said. "Years ago, your father Zeus granted you six wishes and you wished for anything you desired. I think its only fair that you grant your son six wishes as well. Grant them all as I ask for them, and we'll call it even, alright?"
The boy saw Artemis nod, and he grinned fiercely.
"Very well..." he said. "I think I'll ask for my first one now. And its so easy!" he said. "Give to me the knives, bow, and quiver that Zeus granted you."
Artemis didn't say anything for a moment, but looked down at the floor, letting her tears drip down her face. They formed a small puddle at her feet. The boy waited irritably for an answer, and he twirled the knife, wondering if he'd have to start cutting again. But finally, Artemis gave her response.
"Take them... they are yours..."
The boy sheathed the knives in his own belt, and unbuckled the silver bow and quiver from Artemis's back. He strapped them onto himself, and looked at his reflection in the marble floor.
"Now that's more like it. See mother? That's one down." the boy said. Artemis looked up at him, almost pleadingly.
"My son... my child..." she sobbed. The boy frowned and wagged a finger at her.
"Wrong. You might be my mother, but I am not your son. Furthermore..." the boy said, but something seemed to strike his mind. He gave a low chuckle.
"I'm SO sorry. Forgive, where are my matters. An entire lifetime and you don't even know my name." the boy said. He got down on one knee and gave a mocking bow to Artemis.
" I go by many names. Some call me Adam. I am called the Deer Runner, Wolf Hunter, and am He of the Silver Arrow. But I am your humble servant and child, and you may call me Simetra, for I am your undoing... mother..."
Simetra got back up, and began to walk away.
"Glad we got to know each other. And don't worry, I'll tell your Hunters hi when I see them." He put a hand on the marble archway, and looked back at her, smiling.
"So long Mother... remember, nobody likes to be forgotten..."
To be continued? You tell me! Leave reviews and let me know if I should!