Title: “Issues of Consent”
Summary: Ganymede in the modern world, on Zeus’ rape and kidnapping of a minor
Written in 2012
He dreams of peace, a soft breeze drifting over the mountaintop.
He dreams of sheep, and of his faithful hounds barking in the distance as his tutors come to visit him.
He is but young as the shadow of an eagle overtakes him, even as he runs, runs as fast as he can.
There is no escape for him, not that it matters. After all, who would be foolish enough to refuse a god?
“Cassandra. That’s who. And look how she turned out. Bag of cats. Couldn’t shake the crazy if she tried.”
“Thank you, Eros, that’s very helpful.”
Eros, infuriatingly sweet-faced with a touch of mischief in his dimpled smile, giggled—yes, giggled—over his coffee.
“You look older,” he observed.
“Cold turkey. I haven’t had ambrosia in years,” Ganymede said. “Not that it matters. I think the shit’s my blood.”
“In your blood?” Eros asked.
“No. Is my blood. Ever since I stopped drinking the stuff, I’ve been piling up the mortal injuries. I bleed gold. Gold, Eros. You know how I explained that to my last ex?”
“Oh, do tell.”
“I didn’t. He was so tired he thought he was dreaming. I ran. Packed my bags and ran before he could ask questions.” Ganymede sighed miserably. “I liked him. He was nice. A bit on the eccentric side, but nice.”
“What about now? You’re dating that cop, aren’t you?” Eros said, leaning precariously on the back legs oh his chair.
“You know very well I’m dating that cop,” Ganymede said, pointing an accusing spoon at Eros’ chest, “you manipulative little SOB.”
“Hey, hey, hey, don’t bring my mother into this,” Eros said warningly. “And don’t think I don’t see it. He makes you happy. And you make him happy, but don’t ask me how that part works. I’m baffled by anyone who lasts you more than a week, especially with the new wrinkles.”
“I like the wrinkles,” Ganymede said. “I was sick and tired of being forever-thirteen. I wear twenty-one pretty well, don’t you think?”
“Certainly less jail-baity,” said Eros. “At least no more big man gods will be tempted to kidnap you, Mister Hunter.”
“I’d drink to that if I had any alcohol,” Ganymede said, raising a coffee cup good-humoredly. With one wave of a plump little hand, Eros turned his milky mix of coffee into the highest quality wine.
And with his own goblet of wine, the god raised a toast to the immortal human and his newfound freedom.
Mythology studies was ten times more interesting with George Hunter, also known as Mister Couldn’t-Be-Older-Than-Twenty-So-What-Was-He-Doing-Teaching-College-Students-How-Many-Years-Older-Than-Him.
He was gorgeous, a living Greek statue, with baby-blue eyes and gold (not yellow, not blonde, but gold) hair curling perfectly around his face.
But despite the youth in his face and the beauty that came with it, his eyes were old, older than anyone’s eyes had any right to be. An old soul trapped in a pretty young body, and people had come to respect that about him.
Even when Clash of the Titans came out and he spent most of the lesson ranting about how films loved to glorify a rapist/murderer/life-ruiner who got his rocks off on little boys.
It took his students about fifteen minutes to realize he was talking about Zeus.
“Ganymede was a young prince, the son of Tros of Dardania, brother of Ilus—founder of Ilium, or Troy, as you know it—and Assaracus, who inherited the Dardanian throne. He was a young boy when he went up to the mountains to fulfill his coming-of-age duties. He was waiting for a visit from his tutors, who would bring his favorite hunting dogs, when it happened.”
A dramatic pause had people looking up from their notes. Professor Hunter looked wistful.
“He was taken by Zeus, who was… pleased with him. Carried off, away from his loved ones, to live with gods on Olympus. To be loved by all but abhorred by Hera, Zeus’ wife, for replacing her daughter as Zeus’ cupbearer, replacing her in Zeus’ affections. Can you imagine?” George laughed bitterly. “A goddess, jealous of a twelve-year old boy. At least, we can assume he was twelve,” he amended quickly.
“FYI, cupbearer wasn’t all he was,” George continued. “It was a different time, then. No statutory rape, no court to appeal to when a god kidnaps you. Tros grieved for him, but Zeus compensated him with horses. Horses for his son.”
He stopped, his hand clenched on the table.
“His dogs cried for him. They died eventually, as he watched from the sky. So did his family.”
He turned to his class, slowly.
“Gods are made for immortality. But a twelve-year old, living forever? Beautiful forever? What do you think was going through his mind right then?”
“Issues of Consent” (c) Motzie Dapul 2012