A Task Too Difficult


As Heracles approached the gates of the city soldiers begged him to stop. In fear ofKing Eurystheus wrath. They knew Heracles, he would never harm a man who did not earn his wrath. He stopped, not because he cared about what Eurystheus had said, only because he didn't wish to hurt the guards on duty. They called for the Herald and Eurystheus to spectate, but allowed Azeus into the city for more supplies. Mainly wine, a suitable supply for every situation.

Watching from above the gate Eurystheus felt a combination of shock and disgust as Heracles dropped the immortal head of the Hydra before the gates. Three of the guards worked to drag the head into the city gates. Two tasks had been completed and Heracles was no worse for wear. Slightly wiser. Behind the gate the king whispered to his oracle before sending him to face Heracles.

"Oh mighty and brave Heracles. You have defeated yet another fearsome beast. Your next task will be to catch the Ceryneian Hind, but do not harm it," he quickly scurried away in fear.

"You expect me to defile Artemis' sacred hind," Heracles asked to no response.

Eurystheus and his men had already began fleeing back to the castle, Heracles could hear their footsteps picking up pace. He knew it would have to be done. He didn't wish to invoke the wrath of any more gods, he must find a way to do it without making such a terrible decision. Perhaps Azeus had an idea. Where was Azeus?

Heracles sat and waited on his ward to return.Shortly before nightfall Azeus made it out of the city. Limping and bruised, a bloodied lip. He had been beaten by several of the king's men. Still he managed to bring the supplies back.

"Are you injured," Heracles asked.

"Nothing that won't heal soon," Azeus answered holding back his tears.

"Who did it?"

"The King's men."

Heracles could not stand for this. He had not willingly taken Azeus with him, but he was in his care. Heracles uprooted a massive tree with his bare hands. In one swift motion he flung the tree into the gates of the city. Shattering them and sending a tree tumbling into the streets of the city. Heracles would not enter the city, but he would not stand for his companion being injured. This, was but a warning, not an overreaction.

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