Cerberus The Hound of Hades

Two of Cerberus' heads tore into Heracles flesh, ripping skin and muscle from the bone. Each bight had the added burning sensation of the flame that spewed forth from Cerberus' mouths. Heracles did not scream, he was trying to command Cerberus' respect and taking the bites over and over again would not get the job done.

"Fight back," Hermes yelled, growing tired of the games.

"Perhaps you can bribe it with a treat," Athena offered her own suggestion.

Heracles had been known to become a beast in combat. Battering the opposition with his bare hands. He had tried that here, even going as far as to bite the savage animal in retaliation. Still, nothing could stop it from attacking. How Hades tamed this beast, called it a pet and let it stand proudly beside him. Hades said he cared for family more than Zeus or Poseidon. The answer popped into Heracles head. It had been a clue. Pets were family to Hades. Heracles allowed his fist to become hands and stood there.

As Cerberus stared back at Heracles growling Heracles took a knee. When Cerberus lunged again Heracles grabbed the dog, and began to rub it's stomach in a circular motion. Confusion struck Athena, Hermes and Theseus silent. Soon Cerberus no longer fought with Heracles. Instead it waited for Heracles next move. Hades hadn't conquered Cerberus' he had befriended him. The stories of Hades often seem to be much more vile and violent than the man was. With the snap of his fingers Hermes opened a portal back to the surface. Outside Cerberus chased after a squirrel, as if it were a normal dog.

"I wish you luck," Athena hugged Heracles goodbye.

"As do I. Can't wait to see Hera's face," Hermes bid his farewell.

"And what of you Theseus," Heracles asked.

"I am going home. Thanks to you. They label us both as heroes, but it is you who is the true hero, as I would have no life left to live it were not for you. If you ever need my help, I shall come," Theseus shook Heracles hand emphatically.

"Thank you old friend," Heracles said as he walked the opposite way. "Come Cerberus, we have a city to stun."

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