Summer Storm
By Iphenys

Part 1

Present Day - Baltimore, Maryland

It was an overcast type of day, very slow moving, dragging actually. Karesia and Thiel were at home trying to occupy themselves.  Karesia turned to the computer as an outlet, 'Maybe', she thought, 'I will start a story.'  She frowned at her own idea, doubting she could write anything of interest.  Thiel, sensing her thoughts interrupted her mindless stare, "Karesia, that strip club story was good, everyone liked it.  You are trying too hard, looking for ideas.  The plot will come to you-- if you even want one that is!"  Karesia smirked at her roommate's insinuation and turned back to the computer screen.

Outside the sky continued to blacken and the wind's force began to pick up.  "Looks like a storm" observed Thiel. "Yep, sure does.  Great detective work there."

"There's no need to get snippy, just cause you're having trouble being creative."

Karesia turned in the chair to face her friend.  "Well, we all can't be like you.  Although that elf thing has raised a few questions in my mind..."

"Hey!  The elf was a hit, and that was a low blow, attacking my--"

There was a loud thunderclap that interrupted the ensuing argument.  The boom shook the glasses that were in the sink.  Both women walked to the front window to look out.  The absence of rain was now adding to their apprehension of the impending storm.    The wind was so violent that some of the younger trees were bent, straining, while the limbs on the mature trees were bouncing in all directions.

"I have never seen it get dark so quickly before," remarked Karesia. "There was no mention of this of the weather channel.  Is that a dog?"

Pointing to the parking lot below them, Thiel was trying to make out the form in the middle.  Watching the small animal, they could see the difficulty it was having.  Before Thiel could suggest it, Karesia had gathered their coats and was heading toward the door.

If it was possible, the wind seemed to grow stronger as the two friends ran out the door.  Karesia reached behind her for support as the gust knocked her off balance.  "Careful!!" screamed Thiel.  As they made their way toward the small golden retriever puppy, the heavens opened.  The heavy down pour impaired their vision, and made the short distance seem great.

Finally, they came upon the scared animal, and grabbed for the dog at the same moment.  As they touched the animal, a bolt of lighting streaked from the sky and landed only feet from them, throwing the women against the ground.  Everything turned black.


Centuries Ago - Corinth

King Iphicles stood by the window of his bed chamber, and watched the sky swirl into a black mass.  'Looks like this is going to bad,' he thought to himself.  He had been standing there for the past hour, contemplating his earlier decision.  There was a war waging in the next city, and the rumors were of a plan to attack his city.  Iphicles normally didn't take these threats to heart, but since the General of the army was an avid worshipper to the God of War, he thought it was time for a change.  He smirked at the thought, God of War.  Iphicles had gone out earlier alone, to seek out a temple of the God.

The temple was beautifully crafted.  The pillars were engraved with various images, at the bottom were swords, shields, daggers, and other battle items.  As the pillar reached for the ceiling the markings changed into items less war-like.  There were faces, that almost seemed angelic in nature, objects that looked like flowers, and then items that were found in the heavens (stars, moons, suns).  Iphicles thought that it was an odd piece of artwork to find in the God of War's temple.

"Did you want something-- or are you going to stare at the walls?" asked the resonating voice from the throne room.

Iphicles, was taken aback that Ares would be present in the this temple answered "Yes I did.  I wanted to speak with you regarding the war preparations in my neighboring city."  He walked into the room to find Ares lounging in his thrown, with one leg thrown over the arm, looking very bored.

"What about them?"  Shifting his arms so they fell in his lap.

"Well--the General is a follower of yours, so I would like to know whether this is of your doing, or his."

Laughing Ares rose and descended the three steps to stand a few feet away from the King.  "Do you think I would orchestrate a battle, and then tell you about it, before it happened?"  Ares waited for a reply, but did not get one.  Slightly disappointed that he failed in aggravating Iphicles, he rested his one hand on the hilt of his sword. "No I did not put the thoughts in his head," replied Ares, then seductively looked the King up and down, "Is that all?" he asked.

"Yes, thank you for your time."  The King replied who struggled to keep the professional tone of the meeting, after Iphicles noticed the look that Ares gave.  He did not want to admit it, but the look made his heart skip, and he wanted to retreat to his castle before something undoable was done.

"Iphicles--. Would you like some help in dealing with this warlord?" Ares made this offer verbal before his mind was able to stop him.  'What am I doing?  I must be crazy, I like war-- not helping to stop it.'

"You want to "help" me?  Why?  What is in it for you?"

Becoming very defensive "Everything I do is not selfish!"

"Well, if you want to assist me in the planning, you can come to my chamber later and we can discuss it"

Iphicles was brought back to the present when thunder rolled over his city, and a streak of lightening lit up a nearby field.  'What was I thinking, asking Ares here?  What do I expect to accomplish?'  He turned away from the window and sat behind his desk.  His fingers drummed the table top while his thoughts were off in the distance not on the impending war.

Outside of the Castle in the courtyard

Karesia and Thiel awoke in the mud, in a very dark city, and the rain was still coming down.  Thiel nudged Karesia trying to wake her, while taking in their surroundings.  'I have no idea where we are,' thought Thiel.  Suddenly a strong hand was on her shoulder, gripping her tightly, pulling her from the ground.

"What are you doing here?"  inquired the man.

"Where am I-- we?"


"Corinth?  What the hell is that?"  Thiel trailed off as the surrounding buildings registered in her mind.  'Oh shit!'  She glanced behind her on the ground to see Karesia being lifted by a second guard.

"Come with me.  You will be taken inside where you can be cleaned up and presented before the King so he can settle this manner."  The guard made a face at the attire that the women wore.  "We will have to find you some acceptable apparel."


Sleeping Quarters

After the warm bath, where Karesia and Thiel were assisted by two other women.  The whole bathing experience was strange, being bathed or "helped" by other people.  Embarrassed by the whole experience Karesia hadn't said anything to raise questions.

"What exactly do you think happened?" asked Karesia after returning to what seemed to be their room.

"I don't know.  All I remember was touching the dog, and then waking in the mud.  Which is not a pleasant experience mind you."

"I was there too ya know.  What now?  You said they mentioned the King."


"What King?"

"Iphicles?" asked Thiel with a raised eyebrow.

"You say that like you are unsure."  Both girls turned to find the Captain of the Guards standing in their doorway.  "Of course it is Iphicles.  And he has asked for you to be brought to him as soon as you are dressed."

Thiel, who outwardly appeared calm, answered him.  "Could you please give us a few more moments?"

With a nod of his head the Captain retreated from the room.

Karesia walked over to the wardrobe and gazed at the dresses.  "Ok, I want this deep purple dress.  Don't look at me like that!  You know I love purple-- ohhh look a black headband.  I need this to control the hair!"  The dress was an empire cut and sat slightly off the shoulder. Her curly hair gently brushed against her shoulders as she moved about.

"Are you excited now?"

"Yes!  And why not, we are here, might as well make the best of it."

"What if we can't get back or wake up?"
Well... If Iphicles likes us, then why would we want to?"

"Karesia!"  Thiel reached in and withdrew a gold and forest green color dress.  The majority of the dress was green, while a pattern of gold lace covered the top of the gown.  Thiel's golden hair hung toward the middle of her back and was kept from her face with the use of a gold and emerald pin.

After searching the entire wardrobe, Karesia turned to Thiel perplexed. "Where's the underwear?"

Thiel started to laugh, knowing full well that there were none.

Iphicles' Bed Chamber

Ares watched the King for several moments before he appeared in front of him.  After the blue flash vanished, he realized Iphicles did not seem surprised at his presence.  Only the slight nod of King's head acknowledged him.

"You asked me here.  To talk?"  Ares was unsure how to proceed, not knowing what the King had in mind. The time had come for Iphicles to answer for his invitation to the God of War.  'Half truths were better than lies-- even if I'm lying to myself.'  Iphicles stood and approached the God.  "Well, there are several reasons, one is to request that you show me some of your --skills and to share ideas for a defensive."

Iphicles took a gamble that Ares would be intrigued by his request and that he would oblige him.  The God was startled by the words coming from the King's mouth.  'Help.  He wants me to teach him to improve his fighting skills, *and* wants my knowledge.'  Ares began to walk slowly to his right, around to the back of Iphicles, while his right hand wiped his face.  There was nothing to wipe away, only the hesitation that he was feeling.  'Well,' Ares thought, 'At least the afternoon will be entertaining-- maybe I can still get something out of this.'  The smirk faded as he attended to the task at hand.

Ares drew his sword and lunged toward Iphicles.  Iphicles, who had been in his own world, heard the sword being withdrawn from its sheath.  The noise made him duck, not intuition, which he desperately wanted to attain.  His quick movements landed him on the floor, he twisted around to see his opponent.

"What are you doing?"

"You asked for my skills,"  Ares replied with a shrug of his shoulders.  "Rule number one, never let your opponent at your back.  You are defenseless at that angle."  He smirked at the look ablaze in Iphicles' eyes.  'This *is* going to be fun.'

Iphicles picked himself up from the floor and fetched his sword.  The two men were facing each other, swords ready.  For sometime the two danced around in mock fighting.  Ares was talking almost incessantly, and Iphicles followed all orders to the letter.  'He is not as bad as he thinks,' thought Ares.

Sometime during the fight, Ares felt another presence in the room.  He searched for it, but it seemed to be moving from shadow to shadow.  'I know who that is.'  But Ares was too preoccupied with Iphicles to concentrate longer than a second or two.  Suddenly, Iphicles charged Ares with a raised hand.  Ares elevated his own sword to block the attack.  Ares smirked at the attempt to out maneuver him, but his amusement was cut short when he felt a tug on his arm.

In the next moment, Ares' and Iphicles' arms were bound together at the wrists.  At first by a thick rope, which was later overlaid by shackles. In the confusion their swords dropped to the ground with a loud clatter. In the span of a few seconds, both King and God were tied together (right arm to left arm),   Ares spun around to see a smug King of Thieves stroking his mustache.  'Damn, I knew I knew who it was. I should have paid more attention--' Ares thought was cut off by Autolycus' voice.

"Well, now I have you-- that wasn't too hard.  I'M glad that you had a playmate over today Iphicles, you made this easier for me."

The King, growing very angry asked  "What do you want?"

"Well, that doesn't matter now, I can have anything in this room."

Looking around at the art work, expensive and somewhat unique figurines, materials, the possibilities were endless for the King of Thieves.   His eyes fell on the swords.  A smile slowly appeared on his face.  Ares followed his gaze, chuckled to himself, 'he wouldn't dare try to take my sword--' and stared at the thief waiting to see his next move.

"Looky here."  Walking over to the swords.  "The King of Corinth's sword, plus the God of War's.  Hmmm, I think today is looking up."

"Only because the view will be from your back."  Threatened Ares.  Until now Ares hadn't tried to break the restraints, now he was testing the strength.  'This is not regular mortal material,' he thought

"The way I see it, War God, is that you are restrained, and you can't fight for it bound to another man."  Ares lunged toward Autolycus, only to find his left arm tethered to Iphicles.

"The metal," Autolycus started, "won't be able to be broken so easily. No it isn't by Hephestus, but a friend created those for me.  He has discovered something special that prohibits Gods from breaking them easily.  It will take you just a little longer to break free.  In the mean time--"

The sounds of footsteps in the hall drew all three men's attentions to the door.  Autolycus looked around and decided that this was most fun he had had in a while, and in good faith, decided not to take the swords. 'Why do I have to be such a sucker?'  Instead he took a small item so that it didn't impede his escape.  The small item happened to be the King's ring.  Iphicles tried to protest but Ares shook his head slightly so that he didn't make the King of Thieves change his mind.  With a tug on his grappling hook, and an yo-le-a-he-whoooo, Autolycus was gone.

"Why did you warn me like that?"

"Because" Ares started patiently, "If he had taken my sword, I would have to hunt him down, just to regain my life."  The anger was seeping through his facade "Which is not something I need to relive!"

"That ring--"

"I'll get it back, I promise."  Ares meet the King's eyes and held them, hoping that Iphicles saw what Ares so desperately wanted him to see.

There was a knock at the door.  The Captain of the Guards to present the two women before the King.  "King Iphicles--"  The guard stopped when he saw his King bound to the God of War  "I'm sorry sir, if you would like me to return--"

"Thorton, there is no need.  Please show in the two women"  Iphicles straightened his tunic and tried to act dignified, while Ares looked intrigued at the prospect of two women.  'Hmm, today may still be fun.'

As Karesia and Thiel entered the chamber their gaze was drawn to the two men.  Karesia stopped moving, and Thiel gasped at the sight.  Both men were of the same height, Ares' hair was slightly tussled from the mock fighting and his face wore an expression of desire and longing. Iphicles was the epitome of royalty.  His hair fell loosely around his neck, while his arms fell to their sides.

'Oh my God!' thought Thiel. She elbowed Karesia, who was still staring with her mouth slightly agape.


"Look-- they are handcuffed--umm shackled together."

"Oh, yeah."  Karesia replied with a smile.

Iphicles realized why the women were gaping and needed to explain.  He dismissed Thorton, the Captain, and asked the women to sit down. Iphicles wanted to sit behind his desk, however having Ares attached to him prevented him from doing so.  The two men seemed to be able to sense what each was thinking, the longer they were "together" the more intuition they had in respect to each other.  Ares began to take several steps to his right, leading him and the King to some chairs.

After the chairs were shifted, there stood a small circle.  Karesia and Thiel were sitting in plush chairs facing the King and God of War.  The scene was slightly awkward, heightened by the bind the two men were sharing.

"My Captain said you were found, unconscious, in the court yard."  His gaze was unnerving.  "How did you come to be there, and what are your names?"

Thiel and Karesia glanced at each other and silently decided that Thiel would answer.  "Your Highness.."

"Please, call me Iphicles."

"Ok, Iphicles.  I am Thiel and this is Karesia.  I don't know how we got here.  It's a long story, one in which I don't fully believe, that would no doubt, make us insane in your eyes."  Her hands were clamped together in her lap.

"Well, do you have a home?"

"Here?  No.  We would like to be given the opportunity to work in return for shelter."

Karesia took a sideways glance at her friend.  The way she was speaking was not like her. 'Maybe she is trying to fake like we belong here, using perfect grammar--suck up.'  Karesia raised her eyes, only to see Ares smirking.  She cocked her head in confusion, wonder what was so funny.  'Maybe he knows that I'm thinking...naaa.'  Ares' smirk grew into a full mouth grin.  Karesia couldn't take it any longer.

"What's so funny?"

Iphicles and Thiel turned toward the interruption of their conversation.  Thiel, embarrassed, asked "Who are you talking to?"

"Me."  Ares stated.  "I find the two of you amusing.  Friends, but so different.  Fun to watch your expressions."

"I'm glad we are *amusing*."  There was a hint of bitterness in Karesia's tone. "Let me tell you what I think.  You two are obviously not from here, you are too wide eyed.  I don't know where you are from, but what do you want."  The tone made both women shiver.

Thiel recovered first.  "I told you, we don't know how we came to be here.  We don't want anything--"

"Nothing?"  Ares cocked an eyebrow at her, and a look of seduction crossed his face.

"Ummm, no... nothing..."

"I beg to differ."

"Are *you* going to beg?"  Karesia, sensing the change in mood, decided to throw caution to the wind.

Ares responded by releasing a hearty laugh.  "Oh, *I* don't beg..."

Iphicles had been watching this display of flirting and thought he could turn the tables on the whole afternoon.  'I must be losing my mind, they--*he* will never go for it.'

Thiel, was surprised that Ares, the God of War, was flirting with her friend in purple, and that *she* had started the whole thing!  'Well, two can play at this game,' she thought with a smile.

Iphicles turned to face Ares while pulling his hands to rest in his lap. "You don't beg for  anything?"  There were now three hands in the King's lap, his own, and one of Ares'.  The God  looked up at Iphicles and smiled, "Not usually--did you have something in mind?"  Ares squeezed Iphicles' leg , with his left hand, for effect.  'He chooses *now* to flirt with me--maybe these women can help me get what I want--What do you want,man.?  He is the King--'

"Begging comes in all forms, not just on hands and knees pleading...but verbally also."  Thiel offered.

Ares turned his head toward her.  "I know the art of begging, mortals do such an excellent job."

Thiel stood up and brushed off her dress.  "Would you excuse Karesia and I for just a moment?"  Without allowing time for an answer, Thiel extended her hand and watched as her friend took hold.  She walked them over to the door and leaned against it.

"What could you possible want to talk to me about?"  Karesia asked stunned.

"Maybe we are here for a mission."


"Well, maybe not a mission, but you can see the attraction between the two of them.  I think we can get them to put down their defenses long enough to let something happen."

"Hey!  I wanted  a piece of the action.  This "thing" that happened to us, only happens once--"

"I didn't say we weren't going to get any--just that before, during, or after, we should make sure "they" get together."

"I like it.   Now,"  Karesia turned around and looked back at the two men.  Ares' hand was still laying on Iphicles' leg, palm down.  "Which one do you prefer?"

Thiel started to laugh, "I'll take Iphicles, if you don't mind.  You and Ares started this bantering."


As Iphicles watched the women talking, Ares' fingers kept moving, ever so slightly, over his pants.  He had no response.  He didn't know what to do, however, with every stroke he felt a shiver throughout his body. As the women made their way toward them, Iphicles had a leap of faith, and moved his hand to cover Ares' and squeezed.  'I hope this wasn't a mistake.  Flirting with the God of War.'

Ares barely acknowledged the women's absence, he was concentrating on the small movements of his left hand.  'This has turned into a most interesting day.'  He was unsure what effect, if any, his actions were having on Iphicles.  Ares noticed the women returning, and had begun to think that Iphicles was not going to return his behavior, when he felt the King squeeze his hand.  Ares couldn't help but smile.

Both Karesia and Thiel had looks of mischief covering their faces when they stopped in from of Ares and Iphicles.  Thiel cleared her throat to make sure she had their attention.  They both leaned down at the same time and placed their hands on the men's legs, and slowly leaned forward.

"Do we have to beg?" asked Thiel as she closed the distance between her lips and those of the King's.

"Do we?"  Karesia asked, as her lips gently brushed over Ares' mouth.

Aware of his handicap, Ares lifted his right arm and grabbed Karesia's head, leaving his thumb in the middle of her cheek.  "Not since you asked nicely."  He pulled her down the rest of the way and began to kiss her.  His tongue entered her mouth and she raised her hands to his face, to keep him there.

Iphicles, being more the gentleman, simply said no and slowly raised up to press his lips against Thiel's.

 Part 2

Ares had been trying to break the bind that held him with the King, however not whole heartedly.  He felt that now was a good time to break apart, but he could not succeed without hurting Iphicles.  Ares pulled away from Karesia,  "Just a moment."  The God tugged on his left arm, bringing Iphicles away from Thiel.  "I need you to pull,"  Ares said as he looked at the shackles and rope that were constricting their movements.

"All right."  Iphicles replied with a twinge of disappointment.

"Ready?"  A short pause "Now!"  Ares and Iphicles pulled with all their strength in opposite directions.  Their captivity broke and clattered the ground.  The result of the tug of war, left Iphicles on the floor in front of Ares.  As the God looked down upon the King, a wicked grin crossed his face.  Ares leaned down so that his mouth brushed against Iphicles' ear.

"Maybe later," offered Ares, and with a small nip on his ear, stood.  Turning his attention to beautiful woman in purple, "Where were we?"  He leaned down and placed a kiss on her cheek, then nose, her other cheek, and finally her lips.  Ares' left hand moved from her shoulder down to grasp her hand.  Karesia asked nothing, just followed. He led them to the large table used for strategy making.

Iphicles, a little overwhelmed from the offer, did not rise.  Thiel took advantage and joined the King on the warm rug.  With no words, Thiel placed her hand on his face and brought his lips to hers.  His lips were already parted and their tongues met.  Iphicles began to caress her breasts through the dress, Thiel gasped as his hand snaked down the front to find her skin.  His other hand was on her leg, the feel of his touch was making her breathless in anticipation.  He gently pushed her down to the ground and covered her body with his own.  Even through all the clothes, she could feel that he was hard.  She reached down to massage his cock through his pants.  He groaned at the touch.  By nature Thiel was a patient person, however, this was not an occasion to warrant patience.

Thiel was trying to find the buckle, button, rope, *anything* that would unfasten his pants, but frustration was prohibiting her from the task. Iphicles could sense the difficulty and moved her hand aside and did it himself.  All the while he continued to kiss her neck, lightly, it was as if a feather was floating across her skin.  The kisses migrated down toward her breasts, but since she was still trapped within the confines of the dress, he was only able to kiss the tops of them.  Thiel helped Iphicles push his pants down to allow for movement.  Their need was so heightened that longevity was not important.

Iphicles lightly traced circles up her thigh until meet in the middle.  He settled two fingers into her, and began an in and out motion.  Thiel gasped at the feel of him.  Iphicles cut off the moan that was coming from her throat with a deep kiss.  His tongue brushed the top of her mouth and then sought out her tongue where he held it in his mouth, gently sucking.  Thiel's hands grabbed his ass and pulled him down toward her, Iphicles smiled.  He placed his arms on the outside of hers and rested his hand on her shoulders.  With one movement he was fully inside her.  Thiel moved her hands to the small of his back and pushed in time with his thrusts. Each met the other with timed movements.  Small gasps and moans escaped their mouths.

Iphicles could not hold out much longer, then he felt Thiel become tense beneath him.  His thrusts became faster, harder, deeper.  Thiel's fingers dug into his back as the speed increased, the speed in which the pleasure hit her, was a shock.  To keep from screaming, she leaned up into their kiss and mistakenly bit down on Iphicles' lip.  The King pulled away from Thiel's mouth and buried his head in her hair.  Between the pain of his lip and the pressure of his groin, Iphicles lost control.  He came with the next thrust into her body and groaned into her ear.  He bite the side of her neck, loving. The kissing resumed.  After the tremors had subsided, Iphicles pulled away from Thiel's kisses to place sweet pecks and nips upon her neck. She lifted her lover's head and smiled.  Her heart skipped a beat when the smile was returned.

At the other side of the room, Ares pushed Karesia toward the table, he lifted her hair and planted wet kisses upon the back of her neck.  She shivered.  Her hands were on the table, allowing her to steady herself. It seems as though the God's hands were everywhere.  He grabbed her shoulders and twisted her around to face him.  With no trouble at all he lifted her onto the table.  Karesia leaned forward and licked his throat, leaving kisses along the way up to his chin.  She used her hands to tilt his face down toward her so that she could kiss him.  He entwined his fingers in her hair while his tongue explored her mouth. Her hands ran down the length of his chest, searching for a way to remove the clothing.

"There's no need."  Ares whispered seductively. With a smile their clothes were gone.  Karesia was slightly self conscious since her friend was in the room, but she knew Thiel was not paying attention.  Ares pushed Karesia back onto the table and kissed and licked his way from her stomach up to her breasts.  He concentrated on them for some time.  Kissing, licking, biting, pulling, twisting, until he could take it no longer.  He placed both hands on her ass and pull her to him, so he could remain standing.  She gasped with surprise at the motion.  His hands remained at her hips, forever moving.  As he entered her, they both let out a low moan and she grabbed his hands and entwined her fingers with his.

Ares began slowly, taking long strokes, coming almost all the way out, before thrusting in again.  As the desire built he freed himself from her hands and picked her up.  Her legs instinctively wrapped around his body to further the depth of him inside her.  Karesia placed her hands on his shoulders, for support, and to anchor herself.  Ares took several steps until Karesia felt the wall behind her.  With the support of the wall, Ares was able to use one hand to knead a breast, all the while kissing her.  Her orgasm came upon her suddenly and a small groan escaped her lips before Ares covered them with his own.  His tongue found hers and she began to gently suck on it.

As his movements became erratic with need, she racked her fingers up and down his back.  When Karesia felt his ass tighten, she pulled away from his kiss and watched his expression turn from concentration to pure pleasure.  He moaned loudly when he realized she was watching him. After the first wave he crushed her against the wall with a kiss while riding out the last of his release.  When their bodies stopped trembling, he returned Karesia to the table.  As he kissed her, softly this time, their clothes reappeared.

When Ares and Karesia returned to the chairs, Thiel and Iphicles had already righted their clothing.  Before anyone could speak, there was a knock at the door.  Iphicles turned his head "Who's there?"

"Sir, I need to speak with you."  It was Thorton, the Captain of the Guards.


"I'm sorry to disturb.  The storm seems to be getting worse.  We have already evacuated most people from their homes.  I needed your permission to combine some of the prisoners.  We need the space for citizens."

"I see.  Yes, fine.  Be sure to have an extra guard posted with the prisoners this evening."

"Yes sir."  He bowed slightly and left the room.

There was an awkward silence, and the storm outside continued to rage, before Iphicles spoke.  "Have you been enjoying yourselves in our city?"  Iphicles knew it was lame, but had nothing else to say.

A smile played on Karesia's lips  "Yes, more than you could ever know."

Thiel was interested in why the two men were bound together earlier and decided to broach the subject.  "I was curious why the two of you were chained together."

"Well, I asked Ares here to assist me in some strategic matters, and while we were training, Autolycus slithered into the room and surprised us."

"Ares, you are a God, how did you miss his presence?"  Karesia asked.

Ares chuckled and replied.  "I was concentrating."  And glanced at Iphicles whose expression was guilty.

"Concentrating -  it must have had your full attention.  I mean, for a God not to acknowledge a presence in the room - you must have been desperate to...
"I was not desperate for anything!"  Ares growled.  "We were having a lesson - we, *I* don't have to explain myself to you."  He thought he had won, but these two women were relentless.

"A lesson?  In what - flirting?"  teased Thiel.

Iphicles had become nervous and began to pace, just a little.  To the others, it was a distracting outlet for his energy.  Exasperated, Iphicles responded.  "There was no flirting."  He sighed and choose a different approach.  "I wanted him-"

Karesia guffawed before he finished the statement.

The King stopped pacing, 'Wrong approach, damn!'

Ares smiled as he saw through the women's performance.  However, his stubbornness had taken him hostage.  'They think there are feelings between us.  We will see...'  The God walked several steps forward until he was inches away from Karesia.  His head leaned slightly forward. "Why are you interested?  Is our love -  our life important to you?"  What Ares had wanted was to intimidate her into backing down.  Nevertheless, when love was mentioned, even if the thought was incomplete, the battle was over.  He was not on the winning side.  Ares sighed, straightened, and thought to himself.  'Stupid mistake.  What's with you today - just because you feel something -  No!  Love does *not* happen to the God of War!'

Thiel and Karesia both felt a sense of accomplishment.  At what though, they were unsure.  "We have had a long, but satisfying day, so Karesia and I are retiring to our rooms for a time."

"That is a good idea.  Ares and I need to finish our business.  I will call for you later then?"

"It would be an honor."  Thiel said with a smile.  She walked over to him and planted a kiss on his lips.

Karesia squeezed Ares' hand and leaned up expectantly.  He bent and kissed her cheek, then hands, ending with her lips.  With that, the they left the room.

Karesia did not say anything until they reached their chamber, *and* the door was shut. "What are you doing?  I'm sure Ares could have gone a second round."

"I'm sure he could, he is a God."  Thiel turned around to face her friend.  "I don't know what I'm doing.  All the time I have been here I have felt that it was to *do* something."

Karesia smirked.  "And that doesn't mean Iphicles."  Thiel said as though she could read Karesia's mind.

"Do something?  As in..."  She was interrupted by a flash of light.

"Hi!"  Aphrodite was responsible for the intrusion.  "You were here to help me.  Thanks!"

Thiel was confused.  "Help?  How?"

Aphrodite rolled her eyes as though the stranger was to know what the God was thinking.  "Ya see, Iphy and my brother belong together.  Cupid and I decided this.  But they are *so* stubborn, especially mister bad attitude.  They need love, but were in denial.  So I, with Cupid's help, orchestrated your visit."  Seeing that the women still didn't fully understand her.  With a sigh she continued.  "You were just a distraction to let them flirt and consummate their relationship with each other.  You know, loosen 'em up a little."

Karesia asked  "Now we have to leave?"

"That seems a little unfair, don't you think?"  added Thiel

"Exsqueeze me?  Unfair?  I brought you here.  If not for me, you would still be staring at that box thingy, and you"  Turning toward Thiel. "You would have been bored out of your mind!"

"Oh."  Replied Karesia for lack of a better comment.

"Oh"  Aphrodite mocked.  "But it is time for you to go now.  Here, touch this."  She threw something into the air.  It was shiny, small, round, gold.  As Thiel and Karesia reached to catch it, Thiel realized it was a ring.


Baltimore, Maryland

The rain was pounding down upon them now.  Thiel awoke to find her face buried in some grass, she could see Karesia a few feet from her.  She leaned on one arm and looked around.  They were in their parking lot. After nudging Karesia, she awoke and they went into the house.  They made the rounds at the shower, and finally sat at the kitchen table for some hot chocolate.



Ares and Iphicles were now alone in the room.  Iphicles walked over to the window, where he was hours before, and gazed into the storm.  'What am I going to do now?  This is crazy, me and Ares.'  He silently shook his head at the thought.

Until now, Ares had not violated Iphicles privacy by reading what he was thinking.  The art was not an exact science, a God could get a "feeling" of what someone was thinking.  They could sense, fear, trust, lust,  There was a word Ares never associated with himself.  He closed his eyes for a moment and concentrated on Iphicles, a moment later he opened his eyes, and there was a smile on his face.  'Let's see if I'm correct.'

Iphicles heard Ares start to move and realized he was walked toward him. Iphicles turned to meet him, however Ares was much closer than he thought.  The God stood only a foot from him, with his eyes lock on his own.  Iphicles' heart skipped and beat and started to race.  Ares lifted a hand and touched his swollen lip.

"What happened?"  asked Ares

"Thiel was excited," he answered with a smile.

"Does it hurt?"  Ares hand was now cradling Iphicles' face, and his thumb was caressing the swollen lip.

Iphicles swallowed and took a deep breath before answering.  "Not too bad, as long as I do not use it."

"We'll have to do something about that then, because I think you may need it."  Ares leaned in and softly kissed the bruised lip, then he used his tongue and lightly traced it.  When he pulled back, the lip was no longer puffed up.  Iphicles smiled and put his arm around Ares' middle, leaning his head against his shoulder, and turned back to the window.  The storm outside had begun to quiet down, but the rains still fell.

As the two men held each other, Ares felt full, as if there was nothing else he needed.  That was when he felt her.  He slowly turned his head to see Aphrodite placing a ring on the table and then in a flash she was gone.  'So, this was all her doing.'  Ares was smiling.  'I'll have to repay her  somehow.'  He brought his lips down and kissed Iphicles' head.


Baltimore, Maryland

After drinking most of the host chocolate in silence, Thiel decided something needed to be said.  "Umm, I can't explain what happened."  Thiel paused.  "Maybe we were hit by lightening."

"What and dreamed the same thing?  That we were in Corinth??"  Karesia stated unbelievably.  "There is no way it happened.  I thought, maybe it happened, at first. But now... I don't think it did."

"Why not?" she asked defiantly.

"Because, it doesn't make sense.  I mean, time travel?  Ancient Greece, myths..."

"So you think that it didn't really happen?  That we imagined the whole afternoon?"

"Yes.  Yes I do."  Thiel was adamant in her opinion.

"Well, where did you get that hickey?"  asked Karesia with a smirk on her face.  "I didn't give it to you."

Thiel raised a hand to her neck and went to the nearest mirror.  Sure enough, a hickey marked her skin. "Uh.  Ok, maybe I was wrong."

Karesia was laughing from the kitchen, imagining the look on Thiel's face. Karesia stood and walked toward their computer.  "I have to write this down.  It can be a great story.  How do you think I should start it? Humor, humor is always good.  I've got it!"

Karesia was at computer for an hour before Thiel came over to read what she had written.  The timing was perfect.  She was just ending the story with a silly little poem that she altered from a story she had read.  The lines were:

Once upon a happenstance
I met a God in leather
I fixed my gaze upon his lance
It was a four-alarmer!

Thiel walked away laughing, shaking her head, and touching her neck. 'Was it a dream, or did it really happen?'  She shook the thoughts away and began to prepare dinner.

The End