But first, meet our dejected hero, Himeros.
Okay then. Done drooling? Maybe? That's good enough! Enjoy this snippet and then below enter the contest for one lucky winner to receive a signed bookmark, trading cards with candy, a Team Ares rubber bracelet, and a $5 Amazon giftcard.
Touch of the Gods: Shadow of Desire
A stinging blow knocked me away from her prone body and stars burst behind my eyes. Through the dizziness, I saw my father stare in horror that the lovely girl had sacrificed herself for me. My mother whispered in his ear and soon he lifted his blood red eyes to where I weakly rested on the floor by my bed. Like a wild beast, Ares stalked toward me and I knew, if I didn't do something quick, he would kill me as my mother wanted.
With the little bit of energy I could muster, I gave the goddess one last look of sadness before flashing both myself and Adriano away. We fell through a dark vortex, my wings flapping to maintain leverage as we plummeted.
I had no clue as to where we were going but soon watched as lush green hills came into view below me. Reaching out, I wrapped my arms around the now unconscious form of the nymph-pig, shifting until my body was under her and holding tight waited for the impact.
The pain that jarred my bones when I landed in a crater slowly filling with water nearly did me in but I managed to hold on and not black out. It took several hours to climb from the lake I created and even longer to find a suitable stable to squeeze my large god body into. Gently I rested Adriano in a pile of hay and shrank down to a comfortable size. Breathing heavily I looked over and went to touch the nymph to make sure she was okay only to find my hand no longer had flesh.
It was a dusky shadow. Jumping to my feet, I panted as I patted my body all of which was also black mist. “What? Why?” I tried focusing but nothing changed.
A flash of light blinded me momentarily and I pulled back to hide in the dark corner. The golden woman sashayed toward me, stopping briefly to study Adriano's limp body.
“Mother, help me! Tell Ares the truth and help me be normal again.” I floated out to face her.
Her eyes held no love in them as she regarded me. Aphrodite stayed silent for what seemed like forever before she finally sighed. “You were never normal, Himeros. Love has no place for something like you.”
The goddess's words cut me deep. I moved closer only to have her back away. “Why did you do this to me, mom? How can I come home now if Ares will try to kill me if he sees me?”
She shrugged nonchalantly. “I really don't care if he does or doesn't. I just like toying with him. Things were getting to be so boring between us. I thought to spice things up. And what better way than to see if he loved me enough by killing his own son.” Aphrodite smiled dreamily. “It's so very romantic really.”
My anger reared to life. “You bitch! This isn't a game!”
Blindly I lunged at her but passed through when she faded away leaving the trace smell of lavender and careless laughter. In the darkness of the barn, the animals all slept and I, Himeros god of uncontrollable desire, was outcast and alone.
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