22 Meadows of Asphodel [5/8]

With a small bow, I extend to the power couple a sign of respect and courtesy, "Hello, Persephone and Hades. I've come to visit you and to see your daughter, Melaina. How is she, by the way?"

As if her mood has switched off to a different personality, Persephone says with a chipper voice, "Oh... as well as she could be. Everything went splendidly. Being already full-grown adults as soon as they are born, has always been a huge advantage."

"After conceiving Melaina at the Acheron river, I gave birth to her at the same place as well. She's incredibly lovely. Still very quiet at the moment, though, and is not used to seeing too many people yet, I suppose." Persephone giggles as she thinks about her child.


It's then that I hear a succession of loud crashes and sounds of things breaking that ensues soon after.

It is then being followed by a dull sound of an object that rolls across the marble floor. Beside, it is a silver metal oval tray that refuses to stop rattling about. It continues to spin and makes clattering noises from its uneven design.

My eyes travel behind her as I see something quite similar to those abstract paintings I see in art galleries these days. A splatter of white fluffy whipped cream, ruby red strawberries, and mounds of crumbled vanilla cake are strewn across the no-longer pristine floor.

My mouth drapes open at the mess that's been made.

I try to snap myself out of shock, yet as soon as I immediately get up to help her, I'm again distracted by the several broken pieces of hand-sculpted ceramic that's scattered around the quivering girl's feet.

Judging from the patterns on some of them, I believe that before it broke, it used to be that lovely piece of a ceramic teapot that had hand-painted Lilac Wonder Tulips all over the main body. It was an old favorite of Hades'.

... Oh no.

One of his favorite teapots?! He's pretty crazy about them... How is...

"My dearest Melaina, why are you still standing there? You should be careful. It's okay; dad will take care of it." Hades says so gently as he snaps his fingers.

All the mess that was once there is all gone. It's like nothing has ever happened. He even got rid of the broken pieces.


Where's the rampage? Where's the Hades I used to know? Is it really because of fatherhood that he has changed this much, and this drastically?

Who knew that even Hades would change after having a daughter? That's... good, I guess, wouldn't want some crazy thing happening the day I meet their daughter.

I dramatically brush off a sweat drop, as my heart rate starts to fall back to its regular rhythm.

I look back at the person who was carrying a tray full of snacks. The tea that seems to be meant for the four of us. What's odd, though, is that the girl has said nothing since earlier. Being too distracted by the mess around her earlier, I wasn't able to give her a good once over.

The person before me is a slender girl who doesn't precisely resemble either of her parents.

She stands wide-eyed and stunned as soon as she locks into eye contact with me. Her tourmaline bright eyes shine brightly, as her long, silvery hair frames her heart-shaped face.

The longer we stare at each other. However, the more menacing her eyes looked. She is making me feel very, very uneasy. While she's an undeniably gorgeous girl, the way she looks at me is so unsettling that it slowly sends shivers down my body.

One of my eyes narrow, as she's starting to make me nervous.

Melaina exudes an aura of something quite frightening to me. She then starts to raise both her hands, as if she wants to reach out and touch me.

She takes one step closer, and closer until she finally breaks into a sprint. As if she's hoping to jump into my arms, like a princess being caught mid-air by the prince.

Unfortunately for her, though, what awaits her are not welcoming arms; but my cold and distant back, as she crashes face-first into me from behind.

Her nose, that's wholly smooshed up against my thick metal armor, starts to bleed profusely as soon as she retracts one foot back.

Oof. I thought she'd be able to stop herself from bumping into me.


I'm concerned as I've pretty much injured the girl I came to meet.

I whirl around to face the person behind me. Melaina is showing me the creepiest and most intense looking grin I've ever seen, as blood drips from her nose.

A trail of viscous red fluid paints a path down her smile. It travels downward as it slowly drips from her chin and straight onto the ground.

Why is she smiling at me like that...? She can't possibly think I'm just playing with her, right?!

Usually, when someone is being rejected that openly, they'd give up from just the humiliation alone. But why do I have an awful and horrible premonition that this won't be the end of it?

Just as I'm about to open my mouth to let her know just how much I uncomfortable by all this, a large figure comes in between us.

Oh, thank goodness! I'm safe!

Never have I feared a single being except for this... creature.

"Persephone! Please help me!" I plead at the motherly figure that's between Melaina and me.

However, she has her back turned against me.

"My dearest Melaina! Your nose!! You're bleeding! Why are you still reaching out for this woman? What else did she do anything to you?!" Persephone starts wiping her daughter's nose with a silk cloth. Not caring about how it's most likely going to stain it for good. "Oh, my poor dear... just tell me if there's anything else that's wrong, okay?!"

She then grabs hold of her daughter's shoulders and checks her body for any injuries of any kind. Talk about an extreme exaggeration. Why the heck would I hurt her anyway?!

Melaina clicks her tongue and rudely replies with, "... Mom, you're blocking my view to my absolute goddess! She's the most wonderful thing I've ever laid eyes on! Khirelle is perfection incarnate. Can you see her aura, spilling out in such huge quantities?"

She starts to breathe heavily, gasping as if she could no longer contain herself, "All that death, blood and all the souls of the slain that follow her around?! And my goodness, that emptiness, and darkness that clings to her very soul. It's blacker than the night itself, and it consumes her! AHHH...! I've never seen anything like it! It's making me feel so hot all over! I-Is this what you call, love?!"

... Wh-What now?! LOVE?! And all those other things she's said...! I am SCARED! I-I... need to get out of here! I'm officially creeped out, for real!

"Uhhh... It was... nice meeting you, Melaina. I better get going... I just wanted to visit everyone, so... uh, goodbye!" I'm not only terrified by her quickly budding stalkerish tendencies but with the way she's able to stare into my soul like that has given me the heebie-jeebies.

I don't know how my 'soul' looks like exactly, as I can't check it out myself. Nor am I privy to such information, and yet, still, it somehow feels like she genuinely has seen right through me.

This is even if I have had NO idea if my soul or spirit indeed resembles how it does to everyone else, who can see straight into the depths of my inner self. Or maybe it's just her?

I sincerely doubt that her powers have fully manifested yet, as she's just been born after all.

In any case, I decide to make a run for it before this gets any worse.

After saying my goodbyes to them in a hurry, I rush out of their home. I'm like a bat that escaped straight out of hell.


It's been some time, but I finally arrive at the gates of hell where Cerberus is guarding.

As soon as I give the cute doggie some cuddles and pets, I start to make my way out, when some commotion happens right before I fly away.

The ever-watchful hell-hound is biting onto someone's outfit. Doing all it can to prevent the struggling figure from escaping.

The pitiful dog whines as the person quickly turn violent, shouting, "LET ME GO, YOU DUMB MUTT! I'm going to lose her! STOP IT!"

Frantic, the female voice that curses at the family pet without holding back, begins to start punching its already bruised snout, as it still tries to get a hold of her.

Poor Cerby is having trouble detaining her, as he doesn't want to hurt one of his owners. Fortunately, his good senses kick in, and he howls loudly as he's about to be cornered.

Small greyish-purple magic, which admittedly, doesn't look all too menacing, emanates from both of her hands.

The more she struggles, the stronger the energy becomes as she's probably getting more, and more desperate.

I'm about to start worrying for Cerby, just in time before the sky overhead starts to become even darker, and something ominous seeps out from the heavy atmosphere... which can only mean one thing.

I look to the side of the gate... and in contrast to his slow and deliberate walks, the way the person's face looks right now is scary beyond belief.

Hades looks extremely angry.

He's so pissed that nothing else can compare the level of anger he has right now.


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