The Hydra

The Leraean Hydra was a beast raised by Hera from birth. The child of Typhon, the winged and snake footed beast, and Echinda, the half woman, half snake creature that had hid in caves for centuries. At birth the creature was snatched away by it's grandmother and raised with purpose. That purpose was to kill Heracles.

Buried away in a swamp poisonous enough to kill any man or demi-god the creature was no secret. Many had stories about facing the creature, but none were true. Many couldn't survive the swamp, and those that did could not survive the hydra. Heracles was no different, he wrapped a cloth around his face and went as far as he could.

Flaming arrows, one after another he fired into the swamp with no true aim. Slowly it began to burn, and the roars of the hydra caused creatures to scurry from the forest. Heracles expected something much larger than himself. Where as Heracles was the size of two men, the Hydra was no more than four. Nothing Heracles could not handle.

As it approached Heracles slammed his club across the Hyrda's first head, crushing it. He gripped the center head and moved on to crushing another. The beast had started with three heads but Heracles counted five now. For every head he crushed, two more grew in it's place, and the center head could not be crushed. The hydra grew to nine heads before Heracles decided he needed to retreat. There was nothing he could do to slay this beast today.

"You didn't kill it," Azeus asked in shock as Heracles returned from the swamp.

"Live to fight another day boy. That is my first lesson to you."

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