Eros, god of love, has always been depicted as pure; an innocent, chubby-faced cherub slapped on today's Valentine's Day cards. Ever wonder how he got that way? Well, I'll tell you—he fell.
And he wasn't alone.
It's a secret they don't want you to know about, because if you did, you'd never look at Love the same again. You want to know? See, it was Eros who bit the apple... More
He narrowed his eyes, determined to find out who this goddess was that had aroused such desires in him. “Tell me why you disrupt the humans with your mischief.”
She shrugged her shoulders, the move pressing the rounded tops of her breasts together in the scandalously low cut of the corset of her dress. She did not continued until he lifted his gaze from the sight. “It is my nature, Eros. As it is yours to go about binding them with your,”—dark eyes rolled with disgust—“love. Sticky sweet like nectar of the trees on the Mount.”
The ache in his groin had not yielded; her scent making his heart race. “Tell me your name, goddess, or you will have the wrath of Zeus to face, and Aphrodite, besides.”
“Threats of Zeus?” she gasped and pressed her hand to her breast, “I shudder. I’ll make you a deal, Eros. A game, if you will.”
Curious, he nodded for her to continue.
“You wish me to cease my meddling with these useless peasants, yes?” She didn’t wait for his response. “I am perfectly willing to do so, will surrender my powers to the great and mighty Zeus himself so that I may never make mischief for you again, permitted you excel in my challenge. And as a bonus, I will gift you my name.”
He eyed her suspiciously, crossed his arms over his chest. “What are the conditions?”
A corner of her mouth ticked up. “For one-twelfth’s time of Apollo’s travels with the Sun, you must prevent my apples from hitting their marks.” She held out her dainty palm, and a golden orb materialized there. She handed the solid fruit to Eros, who studied it a moment before she plucked it back. She tossed it in the air, caught it in her hand. “You already know how to defeat them. Pierce them with your arrows and no catastrophe will befall a single mortal. Ha!” she laughed, “I even tell you how to ensure your victory. An easy enough task, yes?”
Easy? Of course it would be easy. He was Eros, god of love, gifted with both speed and accuracy when stringing his darts and connecting with his targets. He would effortlessly shoot her every sphere from the sky for one human hour.
“And when I win,” he clarified, voice deep and earnest, “I earn both your name and your promise to never cause the mortals ill again?”
She nodded, a sibylline grin on her mouth.
“And your oath is binding?”
“And what would you require should you win?”
A shoulder lifted nonchalantly. “A simple thing, really. Nothing you will miss.”
“Out with it, goddess.”
“A kiss. One little kiss, Eros.”
He eyed her warily. “And that’s all?”
“From the god of love? More than enough. Just remember, no other soul but me may touch the apples. Have we a deal? ”
A warning blared in his head like trumpets heralding the arrival of Dawn, yet he could not resist the tempt of her lure. Love would overcome this challenge as he conquered all else, and have her name when he was through.
The length of a human heartbeat passed and he’d changed from the mortal garb into lighter attire, white wings spread wide against red robes. “When do we begin?”
The goddess morphed before him, no longer donning the heavy brocade and petticoats of the era but instead the shimmering silk gowns denoting her an eternal being. Her wings expanded; two raven-black appendages with a span not quite as broad as his unfurled from her back. Her hair twisted into a long, thick braid and then looped itself around her head like a crown. Eyes turned skyward, she marked the time. “Now.”