Three quick raps on the door and Athena opened it.
It was the neighbor above my apartment room at Athena’s door, fidgeting with his fingers and staring at the floor. He was mumbling something like he was reciting something over and over again. His two metered body towered over Athena but yet he seemed so scared. He had a nice consistent black stubble and loose plaid shirt over his thin frame. The forest green beanie on his head didn’t fully cover his hair as a wild golden quaff of hair escaped in the front. Athena had to clear her throat to catch his attention and he looked up like he was expecting someone else or something even though he just knocked on her door.
“Oh! Um, bright and early the sun is!” He fumbled with his words to complete a sentence. Ironically, it was almost midnight and there was no sun in the sky. In fact, the moon was already out and the clouds were hazing about in the dark but Athena didn’t bother to correct him. His mouth stretched into an uncontrollable grin to hid his embarrassment.
“Oh hello, Marcus. What brings you here? Did the mailman accidentally give you my mail again?” Athena ruffled her hair. She was in a very disheveled state at the moment. Her makeupless face and chestnut hair in a messy up-do was matched with her enlarged white T-shirt that stopped at her thighs and her thick grey bathrobe. One hand clung onto a black tray of sugar cookies she had just finished baking and the other one rested on the door knob.
He chuckled uncomfortably. “Well yes. I mean no. It’s not about the mailman.” He breathed two heavy sighs to stabilize his emotions.
“Cookie?” Athena offered as she raised the tray up towards Marcus. Instead of taking a cookie, Marcus suddenly leaned in and kissed her on the lips. His lips were slightly chapped but soft in an accommodating way which easily molded around Athena’s statue-like lips. Athena could feel his hot breathe on her face and she became immobilized. Marcus suddenly realized what he was doing and jerked back, staring desperately at her face. “I’m so sorry. I don’t know what just happened.”
Athena just stood there for a couple of seconds with the tray still up in the air like she had when she offered him a cookie. Then, she stared emotionlessly at Marcus and cocked her head to the side as if she was analyzing him. “Hm. I will make note that you don’t like cookies.” She slammed the door on his face as she turned back around to continue about her business. What a distraction to her baking.
Athena began walking towards the kitchen to put the cookies on the counter when yet again someone knocked on her door.
“Oh for goodness sake.” She set the cookie tray on the dining table and walked back to the door to throw it open.
“What on earth is it no-” She stopped mid-sentence.
Athena was drawn aback from the sight that laid in front of her. Hera, the queen of the gods, was a worse state that Athena was. Her dress was ripped at the edges and her makeup streamed down her face making her look like a homeless clown. Hera tried to bubble out some words out of her mouth but she just sounded like a dying frog. With a regretful sigh, she stepped back to motion Hera in. Hera’s face showed her gratitude as she wobbled into the room and collapsing on a chair next the table. Without hesitation, Hera grabbed a cookie, shoved it into her mouth, and after realizing that the cookie had no effect of making her feel better, began sobbing again.
Athena closed the door quietly and placed a box of tissues on the dining table in front of Hera while Hera became working on creating a tissue pile on the floor. Athena was actually completely uninterested in what Hera had to say. The only thing she was actually was curious about was why Hera came to her to seek for comfortable out of all the people she knew. She thought it had already been established that she hated Hera and vice versa. Nevertheless, Athena was hungry so she brought herself a bowl of Italian pasta to the dining room to began eat. A few moments of silence passed of Athena munching on her dinner while Hera busily cleaned out her nose.
“Are you not prepared to ask me what is the matter? Or maybe comfort me?” Hera complained.
Athena looked up from her food and her eyes widened slightly confused what Hera was complaining about. “Well, I didn’t know if you wanted to share or not.” Athena defended herself.
“Of course I do, you dweeb. Why else would I come here?” Hera whined. She threw up her hands in frustration at Athena’s lack of comforting skills.
“Oh… so why did you come see me?” Athena casually threw out. “Don’t you have other… children to counsel you?” She was a little reluctant to include herself as one of Hera’s children.
“Oh goodness. Have you seen Hephaestus and Ares? Either ugly or violent. I can never have a perfect son. And all of my lovely daughters are all off doing their own things, most likely not even in Europe at the moment. I don’t know how to even reach them.” Suddenly, a wave of realization seemed to hit Hera as she began to panic. “Do they not love me too? What did I do wrong that makes everyone hate me? Everyone in the world hates me because of a reason… a reason I don’t even know of!” Hera sobbed even louder and continued to blab on while Athena began concentrating on finishing her food again. She could honestly care less about the drama in Hera’s life.
“- and then there’s Zeus.” Athena’s ears perked back up. “The man never shows that he loves me, always doing things behind my back. NEVER bothering to tell me anything. Sometimes, I wonder if he even loves me, because I know that I love him.” Hera’s hands moved wildly on their own to express Hera’s passionate speech and her blonde curls bobbled with her head. “And he always tell me Hear baby I love you so much. But if he doesn’t really love me then I don’t know what to do.” Her voice cracked slightly. “And sometimes, I even want to leave him just to see what he would feel like. He deserves that. That ignorant st-”
“So do you feel any anger towards him?” Athena interrupted.
Hera’s eyes lightened up, because, for some reason, suddenly, Athena was showing interest in her life. “Well, this morning, I caught Zeus with this blond WHORE in the bedroom. And I kicked her-” Hera kicked her leg up to reenact what she did. “-out of the house and threw a nice slap on Zeus’s face-” She smacked the mid-air. “-which felt… satisfying.”
“Yes. yes.” Athena said impatiently. “Hera… what if I told you I could change that? If you just listened to what I told you to do? And make all of your troubles go away.”
Hera stopped sniffling pathetically, confused. “And how would you do that?”
Athena got up from the table and walked to the kitchen. She grabbed out a tea tray and began preparing some tea back facing Hera. Hera’s eyes followed Athena to the kitchen still perplexed.
“So what is the plan?” Hera asked.
Instead of answering, Athena didn’t look up from the tea and asked, “Would you like some?”
Hera nodded her head “Yes, please. No sugar.”
Athena quickly prepared two cups of warm tea and walked over with the tea tray to set it down on the dining table. She sat down and lifted up her cup before motioning to Hera to do the same.