The Reddleman of Hades

May 27, 2009
By Jory Heckman BRONZE, Shoemakersville, Pennsylvania
Jory Heckman BRONZE, Shoemakersville, Pennsylvania
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

He stands at the prow, oar in hand, conjuring rippling, whirling wraiths to appear on the water’s surface, sketching specters with every stir of his paddle along the River Styx. Charon leans emaciated upon his raft, that he and his sail oar one, each yielding submissively to the winds. A piteously skeletal figure expect for his knotted shoulders, stiffened from centuries of ferrying the dead. His skin raw and ruddy from the freezing mist hanging eerily over the water, a fate so undesirable that by comparison Sisyphus and Tantalus would look to their fates with contentment.
What hideous apparition appears for before these departed, bound for the distant shore, accepting the unflinching permanence of Erebus. That his ghastly countenance should be the last indulgence of sight before these souls are taken beyond the veil of cheerful tidings, to a ruthless steppe of sheer infinity – where even the most ambitious khan or czar may not lay his imperialist hand.
Charon peers across the moor, spies Hades on a chariot of resplendent fire, laughing roguishly, for wide eyed in terror Persephone is dragged by her captor to this repressive tomb. The daughter of Spring at the mercy of such a brutish keeper. Such a hellish domain is not fitting for this wellspring of life.
Pity for this captured sprite, swelling with rage against such an oppressive and undeserving suitor, leaving her to flicker out her last brilliance in the realm of the dead when she emanates with life. For nothing is lost, nothing is ever lost from the vaults of the underworld. To deliver her from this wasteland, steal her away to the world above, and defend her from such a fate, that is the work for him.

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