"Okay, Mom, I'm coming. I'm not whispering this is just the tone of my voice. No, you will not hear any 'good news' anytime soon. Actually never. You are never getting grandkids!" Deuce harshly whispered on his phone before hitting the End button.
It was four in the morning. Despite being tired from a victorious game of Casketball, and the after party, Deuce Gorgon got dressed and prepared to leave his house.
He sent a text message to his girlfriend to explain where he'd be in the morning. On the nightstand next to his bed he saw her glowing iCoffin vibrate. In his bed was a sleeping Cleo; he kissed the top of her head. His snakes slithered past his forehead to snuggle in between her black and gold-streaked hair. Looking at the Eye of Horas bracelet on her wrist, Deuce knew she'd be safe while alone.
At the pier Maddy Gorgon wore bright orange sunglasses even though the sun wouldn't be up for a few hours. She stared at the shoreline as she leaned against the pier's fence. The obnoxious sound of her son's motorbike pulled her down to earth; it reminded her that her life was mundane and happy, all other nights.
Deuce walked to stare at the same shoreline his mother watched.
"You should've brought a scarf." Maddy told her boy, feeling the muggy chill.
"I'll remember that next time." Deuce let a beat pass and then said, "I didn't mean what I said earlier."
"I know. I'm bound to get my first little mocha-colored grandchild by your graduation. *sigh*Deuce, what would it take for you to impregnate Cleo with triplets? I honestly can't wait for one after the another."
Deuce's green snakes stuck their tongues at his mother. In response, Maddy's thick orange, red and yellow snakes twisted out of their confined bun shape to bear their longer fangs.
"How long does he expect us to wait?" Deuce asked, intending to change the subject of their conversation.
With a brush of her hand, Maddy put her hair back in place. "It won't be much longer. Granola bar?"
The search inside her large, messy purse was halted by the break of a wave. The water beneath them was at a calm sitting when they arrived. It began to crash against the pier harder and faster when the person they were waiting for got closer.
Years of unpleasant visits made Deuce anxious to get this one over with. What was more annoying was Maddy's attempts at flatten his snake-hawk.
"Remember to be respectful and sweet and don't be smart because it will only bite you in the neck, matakia mou." Maddy told her son; her words were stern but not without affection.
"What does he think he's going to get out of this?" Deuce asked; he felt his snakes' head being smashed near his ears.
"Most likely he's going to ask the usual- 'what are you going to do with a mortal life?', 'when will you reach your potential?', 'will you find my lost fleece again?' all that jazz."
Cracking his hands relieved a little of his annoyance. Deuce let his snakes' retain their normal place, standing straight along the center of his head, and braced himself for another visit with his father.
The green water became black and shined like silver. A very large wave began to build one hundred miles away from the pier. As it drove closer, it gathered in size. The Gorgons watched this tall arrived and then evaporate a second before hitting the fence of the pier.
A figure, in the shape of a muscular man, shined in the mist of the wave. He solidified into a human shape and walked out of the moist air and on to the fence. His balance was magical as he stood there. He then stepped down and closed the twelve feet distance between himself and the Gorgons. His outfit was a navy-blue suit with a trident pin on his left pocket.
"You're looking well, Medusa." The sea God told his former lover.
"Don't act too shocked." The Gorgon replied, absorbing his old-man appearance. She knew he could appear in any form he wanted. He wasn't as flamboyant as Zeus but this older-than-middle-age look was quit the pageantry.
"Hello, boy. I see you've kept yourself in hero-shape."
"What the Styx do you want, Poseidon?" Deuce asked, not buying the polite act.
The God smiled in the neatly trimmed black and silver beard that covered his face. "A salty sea dog, aren't you, boy? Alright, I'll cut to the tide; it's your time."
"My time to?"
"To claim your full demi-god title and soak up the powers you've put off to instead enjoy the mediocre childhood you've lived so far."
"Gee, Pop, I remember trying that already and not getting all the wet and wild fun that was promised to me." Deuce said, more sarcastic than impatient.
"Deuce, being a grown man isn't about having fun all the time- you have responsibilities to your family. To me. You are due for a quest to prove to the Mountain that you are-"
"'Are ready to prove I have all the strength, cleverness and majesty it takes to make it up on the clouds and live the awesome life of luxury that comes with having all the power over the toy world I see below me.' I've heard this speech before."
Poseidon stayed quiet and watched his son's arrogance grow.
"You said the same thing to me when I was thirteen. And then I believed it and willing went on the trip; got some scars, had a laugh and met up with my big brother for the first time ever because you forgot to introduce us."
"I've had a very active social life." The water God said.
"Not cool, dude. Also not cool to learn that all the destruction and drama you Gods cause on Earth is out of boredom in being immortal. Oh, and it really pissed me off when you went after my friends last year just to goat me into another quest."
Maddy heard the water rumble and knew Posiden was getting pissed. "Deuce-"
"Mom, I'm sorry to you but I'm not putting up with this." The Gorgon walked up to his father to tell him face to face, "Find another errand boy, you have plenty of sons and daughters to choose from. Plenty you haven't even met yet."
Stupid boy, Maddy thought. She put her hand to her forehead.
The teenager knew his father could drown him or turn him into a barnacle. Deuce also knew Posiden wouldn't want to damage one of his more impressive offspring. This was a certain fact for him because most of the other half-siblings Deuce met were less than confident and happy. He was popular and had an easy-going life.
Poseidon studied his son; handsome, armed with formidable powers and a stupidity that could allow him to brave almost anything. He'd make a heck of a God, but first he needed to learn manners, Posiden thought.
"You're quite proud for being only a mere human." Poseidon remarked. Maddy heard the thunder surrounding them. She wanted to shield her son but she knew one of them had to stay alive, at least to carry the other home.
Over his sunglasses Deuce raised an eyebrow. "I'm a monster, Shamu."
Poseidon put his hand over Deuce's sunglasses. Before he could raise an arm to remove the moldy smelling, crusty hand pain shot into his head.
There wasn't a scream. Deuce's back arched away from Posiden but the God keep his hand place where it was; over Deuce's eyes.
Maddy painfully watched her son's head transform under the magic of the God. His body fell- not dead but limp from the experience.
"You raised him well, Medusa. Hera would be proud." Poseidon told the mother who had fists at her heart.
"This will only lead to pain for you, pootsos. Horrible, awful pain." Maddy promised the selfish God.
Poseidon peered at his son and hoped the penance he went through would teach him better behavior when faced with his superiors. As the sun began to peak, Poseidon let go of his Earthly hologram and evaporated back to Olympus.
Rushing on her five-inch-heels, Maddy went on her knees to stroke her boy's head.
"Moro mou, wake up. There's fresh galotyri for you if you wake up."
Deuce heard his mother speak in a distance. His head was discombobulated, it was missing something in the background of his brain. Where there should've been external feeling of extra limbs to control, not unlike his fingers and face parts, he felt hollowness in his skull.
He opened his eyes at the wrong moment because the sun had just come up and he shades were off. Instinctly he shut his eyes.
"Can we hold off next family reunion for another million years, Mom?" Deuce said, his finger when to pinch the bridge between his eyes.
He felt something soft and thin touch the top of his knuckles. He let go of the bridge to feel the strange strand. It felt like mammal's hair. He gently tugged at it and realized it was attacked to him.
Maddy's lips began to tremble as her son ran his fingers through the brown, lifeless hair that was now on his head.
"What the….what in the. Mom, where are my shades?"
"I am so sorry, Deuce."
"Mother. I am serious, I need any sort of eye wear right now." Deuce kept his eyes shut, his chest was starting to rise as his breathing got faster.
Because she wouldn't be able to stand watching his face as he realized the truth, Medusa took off her sunglass and put them on her boy's face. Maddy's tropically colored snakes twisted in heartbreak.
She kept her eyes shut, stone tears began to fall.
Although he stumbled, Deuce walked to the edge of the pier to see his reflection in the calm green water.
There was brown hair, as long as his snakes should've been, lying limply on his head. He took off his jacket; he was wearing a sleeveless shirt underneath and saw his green diamond birthmark had disappeared from his bicep.
As Deuce took off his mother's loaned sunglasses he discovered two things; 1, the sun and all the colors in the world were bright daggers to his formerly sheltered eyes.
And 2nd; his happy life as a monster was over.