The Ceryneian Hind

The glow of the son awoke Heracles from his sleep. He removed Azeus who had slept wrapped around Heracles as if he were a tunic the night before. Heracles stood there naked in the wilderness realizing it wasn't the sun that awoke him. The Cerynian Hind stood there grazing in a clearing of trees. The hinds golden color illuminated the forest as if it were day time. The most beautiful creature Heracles had ever seen.

Heracles and Azeus had grown much closer in the time they had been chasing the deer throughout these lands. It had been several months since they had slain the hydra, and they hadn't spotted the deer until now. Heracles didn't bother to clothe himself or wake Azeus, he grabbed a rope and inched towards the deer. It spotted Heracles but did not run immediately, and continued to graze. When Heracles got to near, the hind darted away.

It was fast, but it could not run forever. Heracles had spent months searching for it, he would not allow it to escape now. He sprinted after the deer through the trees. Never losing sight of the golden glow. He chased it through the forest as the moon chases the sun through the sky. Never giving any space. He was indeed not fast enough to catch the deer.

They ran for hours in no direction without tiring. Welts formed across Heracles naked body as tree branches swiped against his sweat drenched skin and insects bit at his flesh. He was irritated, but at no point did he lose determination. He continued to run, his body aching. Heracles was built for strength, and although he had the stamina, his body could not keep up the speed for much longer.

After an entire day of running Heracles had the deer cornered. It had run onto a bluff. The only options were to jump to it's death or try to maneuver around Heracles. But Heracles, had no intentions of hurting the deer. He crouched low and picked up a handful of grass, offering it to the Ceryneian Hind as very few had done before. The creature inched closer, and fed from Heracles hand. Heracles tied the rope around the deer's neck as a leash and began his steady walk back to camp, after he remembered where it was first.

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