2 Days Will End - Prometheus
"My garden was not supposed to be so. This garden, before vines captured the walls and this moss showed hints of direction, was where I first created you. All of you."
I looked out onto mankind, the way a proud father should. "For you, I gave the world. For you, I would've died if my makeup was made for me to do so. But instead, I am free, as are you. Two things I thought I would never see."
I said this same spiel, or something similar every day, just before sunset. That is when the pain was close to its worst—when the eagle grew tired of clawing and the process of regeneration was all but ready to begin. Back then the last two lines were, "But instead I choose to stay here another day, knowing these chains can't hold me but will save you." Heracles didn't just save me from those chains, he saved mankind from his father.
"Do I interrupt?" Apollo asked as he entered. It startled me, breaking me from this one-way conversation. I turned, pointing him to take a seat beside me. He looked nervous, but I just waited for him to speak. "My friend, you are my friend, correct?" He hesitated.
He has seen me often, but this time was obviously different. He struggled to meet my gaze before continuing. "Of course we are friends," he said, "but I come here not as a friend, I come as I was born to." His voice started to find composure, "I've seen things, visions, and heard them speak...of you, Prometheus."
Fear, Anger, Pain, Depression. I turned towards the great Olympian in a mix of emotions—trying not to berate the messenger, as I'm sure he feared. "Tell me what they speak."
He closed his eyes as if trying to remember something. I couldn't help but focus on the struggle on his face. That face was still one of youth. The difference in our faces may be why he saw me as his elder. I respect his view but, in reality, that just spoke to how far out of place I was—out of power. We were equal at best, but he will never see that.
"I am long out of practice so forgive me for the broken language," he said. "I will speak it as best I can:
The stars will call just to hear him speak,
and he will sleep no more. May lightning fall again,
but this time not whole, for he is no longer one.
He is more, for better or for worse.
His grace is not in forgiveness,
his movements are not for life.
First fall the scarred, second the sun.
And the light of redemption will come in the dark.
The world will fall and
it won't be enough. Let all fall
and rise again for him. Let him
come once, then let him come again."
As he finished I found myself rubbing my chest and abdomen. The world failed to stay still and suddenly I was grasping air, trying to catch a spot next to him on this stone bench. My hands rushed back to my chest and my heartbeat was racing. The scars are not there, Prometheus, the scars were never there. But the pain is, the fear is.
Apollo grasped my leg as I sat there next to him and slowly, the world started to slow down—its sudden rotation growing still. I pressed my eyelids closed and took a deep breath, "I am the one scarred, am I not?"
Apollo wrapped his arm around to my far shoulder, dropping his head. "It would look like you are from my position," he said.
How do I find myself again in this position? Zeus has taken so many years from me once. "Tell me, why me?"
Apollo rose, his face telling me that I should be able to figure such things out myself.
"However we may feel, to poison Zeus, or anyone for that matter, is an injustice. And the first question in injustice is motive."
And there I find my answer. In all these years Zeus has slept, no one has benefitted. The gods have gone their separate ways, no one has dared sit upon his throne. Everyone has just behaved as usual...except for me.
"For all the years after Heracles freed you, you were no were to be found. Unknown even to me," Apollo continued, "but now we see you often. You have made yourself known and present as if an Olympian yourself. Who would risk sowing in Hades and stealing from Persephone's garden for no reason."
"I know. I know!" I stopped Apollo, that potent mix of emotions suddenly began to return, bubbling in me, all lead by anger.
"Damn!" I said rising to my feet once more, "damn."
"My friend, I am..."
"You have no reason to apologize," I said. Closing my eyes, I took a moment to regain myself. I took a deep breath, trying to grip all the air that surrounded me. Followed by a slow exhale.
Somehow this is my doing, and regardless of the reasons I must pay. I must overcome. I straightened up my body and rose my right arm holding my wrist flat. In a gust, an eagle flew over—seeming to come from thin air—and gripped my wrist, slightly piercing the skin.
I could see Apollo smirk, impressed once more. I told him our story, "Every day, she would tear at my ribs. Starting between the ninth and tenth, before slowly moving up. When I was freed she was the only one that could find me, no matter how far I went. I accepted her as a friend, but more importantly to remind me. To remind me of the pain, the anguish, the strength which it took to never once ask for mercy or feel regret. I question every day if I still have that strength. Could I endure it again, without once asking for mercy? Can I endure even the imprints still left in my soul?"
Apollo looked me in my eyes, honestly, respecting me for the first time since he entered today. "You will not have to," he said. "He will make it quick this time, that I've seen."
"At least I know he will make haste of me," I said as I walked back to look over the world. "But what of my people?" He seemed surprised that—in this time—I would even speak of them, but truly mankind will always be my greatest creation, and more important than me.
"It will not be enough. Your sacrifice will not be enough this time." He saw the disappointment on my face as he answered and rambled on, "What I've seen stretches far past you, but I have learned more than to interfere too much. It will tire me, but the effects will be minimal at best. You, like I, know, what is written is written." He waited, for me to say something, but my silence only led him to continue. "What is coming is dark, so dark that I can't even see it all, or do not wish to." I turned and grabbed him by the shoulder, forcing him to just stand next to me, hoping he'd appreciate my view of the sunset.
We stood next to each other, both trying not to acknowledge any more of the situation. Instead, trying to find some enjoyment in the moment. It grew more awkward until I retreated to my workshop. I came back bearing my flute, gifted from Apollo himself, and a phorminx he gifted me as well. I handed him the phorminx as I held my flute, "I've been practicing," I said, "It calms me at my worse, as you said it would. Play with me. I would not want to miss the chance to play with you."
I followed his lead as we played an ode I never heard before, a tragedy of some sort. It was slow, recognizant of not just my pain, but the journey—the plight. It became ever apparent that the song we played, was for me. I could see the tear holding still in his eyes, I knew he wouldn't let them fall. I closed my eyes and played, letting my tears fall for the both of us. I could see it—these visions—as the notes escaped. He saw his last visions of me and passed it on, however unintentional. Knowledge is no gift when you have no power to make change. I'll play ignorant though, acting as if it was never passed.
We finished playing and as the sun finally set over the lands below. I went to carry the instruments back to the workshop before hearing a call from within the forest. I could not see him, but it was still Apollo. "Prometheus." He said to me, "He has already awoken."