The sound of distant screaming filled Iolaus' ears. It was difficult for him to realise that it was coming from his own throat. The slim hand reached out and gently caressed his stomach before it grasped the handle of the knife protruding from his shoulder and twisted it. The scream came again. This time Iolaus passed out. His body hung limply from the chains that suspended him.

The day had started badly when a careless mis-step had forced Hercules to leave him behind, nursing a damaged ankle, while he went to help a nearby village.

Iolaus had remained at their camp soaking his fast swelling foot in the river, cursing his misfortune. "Just my luck, missing out on a good fight," he griped. "And how will Hercules manage without me to watch his back?" Just fine, he realised. He often wondered what he actually contributed to their partnership. Sometimes he felt that Hercules only needed a friend to relax with, an ordinary man rather than a warrior to fight at his side. But he knew their partnership was important to both of them.

A movement behind him had caught his eye and as he turned a net dropped over him. Despite his lack of mobility he'd struggled against his unknown opponents until a blow had rendered him unconscious.

He came to in agony. He was hanging suspended by his wrists, his feet barely touching the floor. His head felt as if it had been split open. He was thirsty, while a leather gag in his mouth prevented him from dampening his lips.

He took in his immediate surroundings. The stone room was windowless, the single heavy wooden door barred. The chains that held him were attached to an iron ring embedded in the ceiling. It was bare of furnishings with the exception of a strangely shaped frame whose purpose he could not ascertain.

Iolaus wrinkled his nose at the odour that permeated the room - it was the smell of fear. He tested the chains that held him but he knew immediately that there was no way he could break them. Realising there was nothing he could do; he reviewed the facts as he knew them. He knew very little. He had no idea who had captured him, or where or why. He and Hercules had countless enemies; it seemed that every other week some defeated villain was vowing revenge. But how many would go to these lengths?

Most would think a sword thrust, preferably through the back, would be enough. So it begged the question. Why was he still alive? This room gave him a bad feeling, in his heart of hearts he knew it contained death. He felt a frisson of fear at the sound of the door opening, but made sure that none of what he felt showed on his face. Two men slipped into the cell carrying a burning brazier and torches, which they placed in holders along the wall. They avoided looking at Iolaus and almost ran in haste to get out. The flames cast shadows around the room increasing the sense of menace. Iolaus tried to swallow the saliva that pooled in his mouth but the bitpiece of the gag made it difficult.

"Well, well isn't this a pretty sight." The feminine voice mocked from the doorway. "So, little man, are you still in the mood for jokes?" Discord slithered into the room. Her leather outfit, what little there was of it, whispering as she moved. Her hands playing with the stout whip carelessly draped round her shoulders as she glided towards him.

Her eyes ran over him, her entire manner screaming control and possession. "I've been waiting for this ever since you transformed me with that bow, and now Iolaus, you are going to pay... and pay. Would you like to beg for mercy?" she taunted, removing his gag. "I might be prepared to be merciful if you grovel."

"In your dreams!" Iolaus' contemptuous tone brought a stain of colour to her cheeks.

She moved closer to him, looping the whip around his neck and slowly pulling it tighter. "Don't you know, Iolaus, that your nightmare is just beginning? Hercules has no idea where you are. The diversion I organised will keep him occupied - perhaps, if you ask nicely, I'll give him back your body though he may have a little trouble recognising it."

Iolaus could feel his face burn as the leather strap round his neck cut off his blood supply. For the first time he seriously considered that this might be the end. Discord was vicious and bore him a deep hatred ever since he had changed her into a chicken. Now it looked like she intended to extract payment in full.

"Hercules, old pal, I could really use one of your miraculous rescues right now."

Discord loosed the whip and Iolaus felt light-headed as the blood supply poured back into his brain. Sparkles appeared before his eyes and he coughed and swallowed, trying to clear his throat.

"Now where to begin... There are so many possibilities." Discord moved round him like a cat, letting the leather strap trail and twist round his body. She paused behind him. Iolaus felt shivers run up his spine then, almost gently, she brought the whip down across his shoulders. His heavy leather jerkin absorbed the stroke.

After several strokes Discord was disappointed by the lack of response. Taking a blade from the waistbelt of her outfit, she, in one economical movement sliced the back of his covering from collar to waist; two further slashes to the armholes let the now useless material drop to the floor and left Iolaus exposed.

"Ah," Discord sighed, "that's so much better." She ran her hands up his back, savouring the texture of his flesh. She felt Iolaus flinch from her touch. She leant into him and bit him on the shoulder, drawing blood. The taste seemed to inflame her for she suddenly started laying the whip about his shoulders and back, employing all her considerable strength.

Soon Iolaus' back was a criss-cross of raised welts. Many of the angry wounds wept blood. Throughout all this Iolaus had resolutely refused to utter a sound. To Iolaus the beating seemed to go on forever. The pain in his arms increased as he tried to twist away from the blows. The entire length of his back was on fire and the inside of his mouth had the flat taste of blood as he bit down on his lips to prevent from calling out.

Discord was infuriated by the lack of response from Iolaus. Then she noticed how rigidly he held his jaw to prevent crying out. So. He was stubborn. Good. She preferred a challenge. It made the eventual breaking of her victim all the more sweet when they resisted. She dropped the whip and retrieved her blade. She circled around Iolaus, pausing to run the flat of the blade over his muscles. She moved round in front of him and let the blade caress his right nipple before, with a carefully controlled movement, let the knife bite into his flesh.

Only Iolaus' eyes betrayed his pain. Discord smiled into them. The smell of his blood excited her. Keeping her gaze locked on his she bent her head, and, like a kitten lapping milk from a saucer, let her tongue taste his blood. Iolaus shuddered.

Again and again Discord nicked his skin, drawing blood. Small rivulets dripped down Iolaus' chest, smearing where Discord drank of him. Iolaus drew back within himself. Disconnecting his mind from the pain and relying on all his mental disciplines to distance his mind from his body.

Discord's breath was coming in short pants as she worked herself up. Her face and hands were red with Iolaus' blood. She felt a surge of power pass through her at she viewed her helpless captive. She moved her hand to one of her nipples, slipping inside her leather outfit to twist it, her head flung back in pleasure. With her free hand she rubbed the front of Iolaus' breeches. Iolaus grunted and strained to move his hips away from her grasping fingers. Relentlessly, she held onto him then pushed her hand down the front of his clothing. The tight leather prevented her from reaching her goal. Frustrated she reached for her knife and with two long cuts split his clothing leaving a pair of red lines down his hips. Quickly she divested him of his remaining rags. Iolaus hung in front of her naked and helpless as she allowed her hands free reign over him. Grasping his cock, she slid her hand up and down its length. Against his will, Iolaus felt himself harden.

Discord continued with her caresses stoking Iolaus from the tip of his now leaking cock to its base. All the time watching his face. Iolaus closed his eyes; as if by will alone he could deny what was happening to his body.

"Open your eyes Iolaus," she commanded. "I want to watch you. Open them! Open them or I'LL cut off your eyelids." Iolaus forced himself to look at her. Her face, made ugly by her madness, was inches from his own as she savoured his revulsion. He drew back his head and without warning butted her in the forehead. She dropped like a stone. Iolaus hung there dizzy. He knew that his actions would cost him dearly but the gesture of defiance made him feel better.

Discord climbed to her feet. Berserk with rage she grasped her whip by its long handle and began to reign blows down on Iolaus' head. Iolaus realised that he had pushed her too far and his last conscious thought was regret that he had not had a chance to tell Hercules how much his friendship meant. Maybe in the next life.

Hercules was running over the uneven ground, his eyes desperately searching for any evidence of Iolaus' passing. There were signs of a scuffle at the campsite, but thankfully no body. He could see the trail they'd taken; they'd made no effort to hide it. Just as well, because Hercules was no real tracker. Iolaus was the one with all the real woodcraft skills - it was what made their partnership so great, they complemented each other. He had strength and Iolaus speed. He was serious and Iolaus mischievous. Iolaus was his other half, and together they formed a whole greater than the sum of its parts.

As he ran, Hercules questioned who might have captured his friend. Was the attack aimed specifically at him or was it simply a case of his being in the wrong place at the wrong time? He and Iolaus had many enemies, both mortal and divine but Hercules was also aware of the temptation his looks presented to the scum who dealt in human flesh. In a way, he almost wished it was slavers who had captured Iolaus - they would want to protect their investment and would make sure that nothing happened to him - they would keep him safe until he could catch up to them. No, his real worry was that whoever had taken Iolaus was out for revenge. Hercules quickened his pace.

When Iolaus regained consciousness he was still in the cell, but was now tied, spread-eagled, onto the strange metal frame he had seen earlier. He could taste blood in his mouth and was having trouble focusing. One of his eyes was swollen shut His head was pounding and even the faintest movement caused intense pain. He thought his jaw must be broken.

He tried to move his limbs but they were secured with leather belts to the frame. As he struggled the entire frame moved and when he managed to pull his arms in toward his body his knees were forced up and out by the changing shape of the frame.

From behind he felt Discord's breath on him, before her arms glided over his bloodstained shoulders and down to play with his nipple. She puckered it between her finger and thumb, and against his will a small thrill of pleasure snaked through him. The pleasure was soon replaced by pain as she attached a metal clamp to his nipple, its teeth biting into his flesh. His breath escaped in a sharp hiss as he tried to still his body and concentrate on absorbing the pain. When it had subsided into a single burning point, Discord re-awakened it by flicking the clamp sending another wave through his body.

"Men's nipples are so wonderfully sensitive.. provided you know just the right amount of pressure to apply". She stroked his other nipple and settled another clamp round the erect nub. Iolaus' body froze again, but this time a groan of pain escaped his lips. "Like that, do you? Don't be impatient, Iolaus. We have a long way to go yet." She covered his mouth and sucked on his lips, but he kept them firmly closed in defiance. She brushed her hands over the clamps and took advantage of his gasp to slip her tongue into his mouth, seeking out the sweet taste of his blood. Iolaus fought a losing duel with her, hindered by his bonds until he bit down on her, locking her tongue with his teeth, tasting her blood mingled with his own. Discord struggled to get away from him enduring greater pain as she tore her mouth away from his. A trickle of blood seeped from her lips. Slowly and deliberately she drew her fist back and punched him on the jaw. Iolaus lost consciousness when it contacted with his already fractured cheekbone.

Hercules sank to his knees in despair. The trail had gone cold. He had lost Iolaus. He had been blundering for the past hour unable to track the kidnap party.

He sat and tried to clear his mind. The tracks had gone steadily northward for the last six hours. Now they were in the mountains and the rock bore no footprints. There were no towns or villages in this direction, no ports or harbours, no strongholds or fortresses. There was nothing.

The more he thought about it, the more his intuition screamed that there was divine intervention at play here. But who? Who would want to take Iolaus? Gods? There were so many possibilities. Iolaus had developed an unfortunate irreverence round the Olympians, an attitude that was guaranteed to make him influential enemies. Hera would love to see Iolaus dead simply because of this friendship with him - but chances are that he would have found his body by now. Hera was many things but subtle was not one of them. No! It reeked of mischief--Strife! And Strife was usually dogging Ares' heels.

Hercules rose to his feet, sure he had his answer. Ares had taken a dislike to Iolaus when the hunter had crossed him in order to save his friend. The more he thought about it the more he was convinced that Ares was behind Iolaus' disappearance. This time his brother had gone too far. All his adult life he and Ares had competed with each other, always trying to better the other but their fights had always been private. Recently others had gotten involved. First Xena, then Serena and now Iolaus. Hercules felt the rage build up inside him. He flung his head back and screamed the hated name to the heavens: "Ares".

Iolaus took longer to regain consciousness this time. He was still strapped to the peculiar frame. As his reason returned, he became aware of a pleasurable sensation amongst all the pain. A hot mouth was wrapped round his penis and he saw Discord's head bobbing over his hips. Her skilled lips drew a reluctant response from him. Discord withdrew her mouth, and with a smile met his shamed gaze. Keeping her eyes locked on his, she adjusted the frame and Iolaus suddenly found his back arched with his legs splayed and bent below him. Discord climbed on him and impaled herself on his erection and rode him. Her muscles tightened, milking his cock as she bucked on top of him.

Her shouts of pleasure echoed out in the dark room as she increased the speed at which she rode up and down his rod. As Iolaus felt his own climax grow near, Discord reached down and grasped his cock at the base. Her harsh fingers pinched the blood supply and he felt the edge go off his drive. She waited a few moments more and then began to ride him again; soon the cries from her second orgasm rang out Still she did not stop. Each time Iolaus reached for the edge, she seemed to sense it and prevented him from cuming, prolonging her own pleasure at the expense of his. Iolaus was in excruciating pain. He was red and raw from the constant friction. Eventually Discord climbed off him, her legs shaking as she climbed down from the frame.

"What's the matter Iolaus? Having trouble getting it off? Let me give you a hand." She crossed behind him where he could not see her, returning a few moments later to grasp his cock and jerk him off. It took a few moments for the sensations to reach his tired brain but all to soon Iolaus realised what she had done. She had coated her hand with a layer of salt and as she stroked her hand up and down his cock. The stinging as she rubbed the salt into his raw flesh combined with the incredible sensation of his too-long awaited orgasm, and his screams built up, seeming to go forever.


Hercules stood before the enthroned war god.

"What do you want now?"

"Iolaus. I want Iolaus. Where is he? What have you done with him? Hercules demanded.

"Iolaus? I don't have a clue what you're babbling about. What makes you think I have him?" Ares stared at his demented brother in disbelief.

Hercules took a threatening step towards the seated man and reached out to grab him. With ease Ares flicked his hands aside, standing to face his half brother.

"What do you want with Iolaus?"

"I don't want anything with Iolaus. Why would I have anything to do with your little pet?"

"Iolaus was taken from our camp. I came back to find there had been a fight and someone had taken him. I followed their trail for hours but then I lost it. I lost him."

"And so you jump to the conclusion that I had something to do with it?" Ares raised a contemptuous eyebrow in query.

Hercules sank down to sit on the step to the dais and put his head in his hands. He shrugged his shoulders unable to answer Ares' unspoken question.

He didn't have a reason. He was just used to blaming Hera or Ares when trouble occurred.

"I see, you just assumed it must be me". A grimace crossed Ares' face unseen by Hercules. "Thank you, brother."

Hercules sank into deeper despair. He had absolutely no idea what to do now. He ran his fingers through his hair. "Help me find him, Ares."

"You're asking me for help?" Ares was genuinely surprised.

"Yes, help me find Iolaus, please." Hercules seemed to have lost his fight.

Ares stirred restlessly. He had no ground rules for holding a conversation with Hercules: whenever they met they were usually at each other's throats in seconds. He sat on the steps beside his brother. "Tell me everything you know."

Hercules recounted the story in its entirety. When he finished, Ares considered for a moment. "You say the tracks went northward. And you lost them in the mountains."

"Yes," Hercules replied. "Does it mean something to you?"

"There is a fortress in that locale."

"Are you sure - I know those mountains pretty well and I don't recall any fortress."

"Discord just had it moved there"

"Discord! That bitch!" Ares watched as Hercules expression hardened.

"She hates Iolaus. She would do anything to get her hands on him. Ares send me there, now!"

Ares shook his head and held up his hand to still Hercules' protests. "You would not get two steps inside her fortress before you were found. She has the place well guarded."

"I won't let anything stop me. Just put me down inside her fortress and I'll find Iolaus if I have to tear the place apart with my own hands."

"By which time Iolaus will be dead. Great plan brother."

"Do you have a better one?" Hercules was annoyed by Ares' input chiefly because he knew he was right. He hated being helpless, hated having to rely on someone else when the outcome was so important to him.

"I could go - they know me at Discord's fortress - my arrival will ring no alarm bells. I can persuade Discord to give me Iolaus," Ares offered.

"And what's in it for you?" Hercules asked suspiciously.

Ares' mouth tightened in annoyance as Hercules' question. "What makes you think I want anything?"

"Because I know you - you never do anything unless there's some advantage to yourself."

Ares tipped his head back and looked at Hercules through half-closed eyes, his teeth biting into his bottom lip. He smiled coldly. "And of course you know me so well" Ares was genuinely annoyed. He had offered his help to Hercules in good faith and his ingrate brother was flinging it back in his face. Well so be it. "Iolaus".


"I want Iolaus, or more accurately I want you to give me Iolaus - oh not for ever - a couple of days should be sufficient to satisfy me."

"Don't be ridiculous - I can't promise you Iolaus - he doesn't belong to me, and even if I could - I won't."

"Very well - I'm sure you'll reach Discord's fortress in a day or so - of course I don't know how much of Iolaus will be left for you to rescue." Ares gestured and an image appeared in the air. He saw Iolaus; naked and bloody, hanging in chains while Discord caressed him with a blade. Suddenly, she pushed the pointed edge slowly into his shoulder, prompting a soundless scream.

"No!" Hercules' shouted as he made an abortive move towards the fading vision.

"Ares, please!" He didn't care that he was begging--his friend needed him. "Help Iolaus."

Ares lounged back on his throne "And if I do, will you give him to me?"

Hercules closed his eyes in desperation. He hoped that Iolaus would forgive him for what he was about to do. "Yes, you have my word. Just save him Ares, now!"

Ares stood and disappeared, leaving Hercules alone with his thoughts.

He sank to his knees, dropped his head to his hand and prayed that Ares would be in time to save Iolaus.

Ares' presence filled the small cell as he stepped through the door. "So this is what you're up to these days." He gave an interested look at the figure that hung in chains, noting the blade that protruded from his shoulder. Death was close for this mortal. "There's not much left of him, is there? You tend to use up your lovers rather quickly these days."

"He deserved it," Discord retorted "You didn't think for a moment that I would be satisfied with the punishment you doled out to him and that thief, did you?"

"Knowing your sadistic streak? Not for a moment." Ares reached for her, twisting his hand into her hair to pull her head back while he fastened his mouth on hers. Their long, deep, satisfying kiss took place in front of Iolaus' tortured body. He watched through swollen eyes as they devoured each other, thankful that, for the moment, her attention was elsewhere.

"I want him" Ares whispered into Discord's mouth "Give him to me."

"Why? He's not usually the sort you lust after. What have you planned?" Her tone was suspicious.

"None of your business. Will you give him to me?" He kissed her eager mouth again.

Discord considered. She really wanted to watch Iolaus die but it would be prudent not to cross the God of War when he wanted something.

She had had her fun with Iolaus. She had stripped him of his confidence and dignity, had used and abused him. Maybe it would be more fun to let him live - that way if he survived whatever Ares had planned for him she could start all over again. A slow smile spread over her lips chilling to all that saw it. "Take him, lover, he's yours - my gift."

Ares narrow-eyed, stared at her. He knew the way her mind worked. "He is mine now and for all time - you are never to touch him again, is that clear?"

Discord' s face darkened with anger. She hated being bested but knew better than to protest. "Clear," she responded and with a savage movement spun towards Iolaus and withdrew her dagger from his shoulder then disappeared.

The removal of the blade triggered a massive flow of blood and Iolaus collapsed with a sigh - his last thought, as his lifeblood drained away was that he was going to escape Ares after all. Ares waved the chains away and caught the body as it sank to the floor. He gathered Iolaus' pale body up in his arms and turned away.

Hercules was waiting as Ares reappeared carrying his friend. For a moment the still pale body looked dead and Hercules felt his heart had stopped. A lifetime passed but then a faint rise of Iolaus' chest alerted him to the life still held in the tortured body. Ares carried him to a sub-chamber behind the throne room. He placed Iolaus on a large bed and stood back.

Hercules pleaded silently for Ares to put an end to Iolaus' suffering. He watched as his brother placed his hand on the open wound on the hunter's shoulder and concentrated. A faint blue light seemed to emerge from those strong hands and pass into the body below. The battered chest rose and fell as Iolaus' breathing deepened. His colour returned as blood once again pounded through his veins. Bones healed, cuts and bruises faded and disappeared and soon he settled into a deep healing sleep.

Ares turned to Hercules "He may rest tonight and regain his strength. Tomorrow night you will bring him to me". With that he turned and left the chamber.

Part 2

Hercules sat and watched Iolaus breath. He picked up the hand that lay above the coverlets, glorying in the feel of the calluses on the palm.

It came to him just how vulnerable his friend was and how indomitable as well. Hercules moved closer and stretched out on the bed not letting go of the hand he held. He lay down behind Iolaus and pulled the sleeping figure to him, soon the exhaustion of the day's exhertions sent him to sleep.

Hercules lay beside Ioulas watching him sleep, savouring his presence. Then Iolaus began to toss and turn, caught up in a nightmare. "Iolaus, wake up!"

He woke with a start, sitting straight upright, and calling Hercules' name.

"It's all right, Iolaus, I'm here and you're safe," his friend assured him.

Iolaus sank back down into the comforting arms. "What a dream," he said his voice shaky. "I didn't think you were going to be able to rescue me in time." He reached out and covered Hercules' hand that rested on his own arm. "Thank you."

"It's not me you have to thank." Hercules' tone held a hint of shame. "It was Ares who rescued you."

"Ares! Now why would he do that?"

"I asked him to."

Iolaus blinked sleepily at this non sequitur. "Then a double thanks to you, Hercules. I know how difficult that must have been for you." A large yawn overtook him. "You know, I thought I was going to die there," he said quietly, "without getting the chance to say goodbye to you.. and at first I fought to live. But after Discord.... I just felt so damned helpless; there was absolutely nothing I could do to stop her. I was nothing to her - just some toy to amuse her.. I hated that feeling. I don't ever want to be helpless like that again. I think it would drive me insane. No, better to die than to ever be forced to submit to someone that way again." The last was muttered as sleep caught up with him.

Hercules lay there with Iolaus in his arms. What had he done? How could he ever tell Iolaus that he had promised him to Ares for his amusement? He couldn't. For once in his life it did not matter that he had given his word: he knew that it was a promise he would never fulfil.

When he was sure Iolaus was sound asleep he gently disentangled himself, went in search of his brother. He found Ares in another antechamber off the throne room, sitting at a long table set with food.

"Finished with your nursemaiding duties? Have something to eat." Ares gestured to the repast set out before them.

Hercules sat at the table a few steps away from his host.

"So how is Iolaus? Getting nicely rested for my attentions?" Ares smirked.

"You can't have him," Hercules stated forcefully.

"But Hercules, you promised him to me, and the whole world knows that the Legendary Hero Hercules NEVER breaks his word." Ares assumed an expression of surprise.

"I was wrong to promise him to you. I don't have the right." Hercules' voice reflected the anguish he felt.

"And just how would you stop me if I chose to take him? After all - we're here in my temple and as you're so fond of saying: you're no god." Ares was now openly mocking him.

"No, please. It would destroy him if you were to force him. I'm begging you, brother: leave him alone."

"You would beg for him? What else would you do?" Ares queried.

"Whatever you want. Spare Iolaus and I'll take his place"

Ares stood up, with one hand brushing aside the plates from the table. "Drop your pants and bend over the table."

Hercules stared open-mouthed at him.

"What are you waiting for? You said you were prepared to take his place."

"Here? Now?" Hercules' voice took on a squeakily quality he barely recognised.

"Here and now. I want your naked arse up in the air where I can pump it." At Hercules' continued hesitation, he taunted, "Not so sure you want to save Iolaus from a fate worse than death? I didn't think so. I'll just go and wake him up and see if he's ready for the games I have planned." Ares headed towards the door.


With a heavy heart, Hercules stood up and moved his hand to the belt of his breeches. Apart from some early fumbling during his days at the Academy he had never been with a man. He had never been interested. Now his first time would come at the hands of his brother not as an act of love but rather one of domination. To prove whom was the Alpha male. That's what their fights had always been about - which one, regardless of divinity, was the better man.

"No, Hercules, stop," Iolaus interrupted as he stepped through the door where he'd been listening for the last several minutes. "You can't do this." He crossed the room and stayed Hercules' hand. Speaking quietly he said, "Thank you, my friend, but I can't let you do this for me. If the price of my rescue was pleasuring Ares, then I will pay it. I will not let you sacrifice either your word or your body."

"But I shouldn't have promised him you. I didn't have the right."

"I realise you did it to save me from Discord. And believe me, if I have to be a sex toy to a god I will taken Ares over Discord every time. He may be cruel but he's no raving psychopath.

"After what you just went through with Discord, how can you possibly be willing to submit to Ares?"

"Because this time I have a choice. Thank you for that."

Blue eyes met brown and a silent war raged between them. Hercules shook his head firmly. He would never let Iolaus do this. Iolaus met Ares's eye and an understanding passed between them. With a wave of his hand Hercules vanished and the two men were left facing each other.

"What have you done with him?" Iolaus asked.

"Nothing permanent. I just send him a day's journey from here. By the time he gets back it will be too late for him to protest. He can take you home then."

Iolaus was getting tired at the way both Hercules and Ares seemed to regard him as property. It was time to assert himself. "Let's get on with it then." He closed the gap between himself and Ares, curving an arm around the taller man's neck, then pulling him down for a kiss. He felt Ares' surprise at his head on approach but soon the god relaxed and opened his lips to let the hunter's tongue slip between them and explore his mouth. Keeping his hands in Ares' hair he broke the kiss and met his eyes. "What happens here between us is private. You will never speak of it to anyone, especially Hercules. Do I have your word?"

"Will you trust my word if I give it, Iolaus?"

"Yes, because I'm going to make you the same promise. No one will ever hear about what happens between us from me." Iolaus replied as he leaned forward and kissed him again.

Ares found the difference in their heights an inconvenience, so without breaking the kiss he changed the venue to a bedchamber. Iolaus noticed and skilfully manoeuvred the war god backwards until the bed caught him behind the knees, and he collapsed down onto it with Iolaus on top. Iolaus gave the lips one more light kiss and then let his tongue trace a path up the center of the face, kissing each of the eyes in turn.

He could feel Ares' hardening erection press against him and felt an answering response. He was surprised, but pleased, that the god was letting him take the lead so he continued being assertive. He licked Ares' ear while letting his hands wander down to the leather clad chest, pushing open the waistcoat, and running his fingers over the well defined muscles. Ares felt a shiver run the length of his spine at the intense kisses.

Pushing the waistcoat down off Ares' shoulders it served to trap his arms below him. Iolaus leaned over and ran kisses across the exposed collarbone and to nibble at the point where the neck joined the torso. Small moans of pleasure escaped Ares lips but were soon silenced when Iolaus returned his mouth to plunder the lips again.

As the long deep kiss continued Iolaus pondered. Ares was proving to be a surprise. Despite his earlier threats he had initiated no action but was leaving it up to Iolaus to make all the moves. This was unexpected with someone as dominant as Ares ... but then he remembered that Discord was this man's lover and if ever there was a dominatrix... could it be? Surely not. What the heck .. this whole situation was pretty surreal and he didn't think it would get any worse if he asked and was wrong.

"Ares, would you like me to tie you up?" He searched the god's eyes for his response. When Ares just looked at him he lost a little of his bravado "It's just that...Well, I thought it was something you might enjoy - that we could both enjoy."

Ares' mind was racing. Part of him was offended. How dare this mortal... but the idea also elicited a spark of excitement within him. All his adult life he had been in charge. Making decisions that effected the lives of thousands of humans. Choosing who would live and who would die. Maybe for once it would be nice to have someone else take charge. He'd had the offer before, from Discord, but he wasn't insane enough to let that discontented bitch have any control over him. However Iolaus would be safe. If the situation looked like it might be dangerous he could simply blast Iolaus into non-existence. He let none of this thoughts show on his face, instead asking "You've done this before?"

Iolaus nodded. "I lived in the east for a while learning different fighting techniques. My master enjoyed it although he preferred to practise bondage on his concubines. He would let me partake sometimes. I've played with one or two others since then."


"Gods no!" A grin broke over Iolaus' face. "Can you just see it?"

Ares grinned back "Frankly, No! My straight-laced brother would have a fit!" He laughed. "What do you need?"

If Iolaus was surprised by the rapid acceptance he did not let on. "Rope, a knife - to cut the rope," he hastily tagged on at Ares's raised eyebrow, "and a few other things that I can get from the Hall."

"Go." Ares gestured with his head and Iolaus went to collect the items he wanted. When he returned, a long length of rope was curled by the headpost of the bed and a knife lay on the side table. Iolaus had stacked his goodies beside it. "Is all that really necessary?" Ares pointed to the assorted items - bottle of wine, goblets, a tablecloth, candles and the essential oil.

"Necessary? No. But fun. Yes." Iolaus was busy expertly cutting different lengths of rope. He then cut the tablecloth into several smaller pieces. Placing the pieces on the bed he picked up the bottle and poured some wine into the goblet. He tasted it, closing his eyes to savor the sensations as he held the wine on his palate before swallowing it. Opening his eyes he met those of Ares' and smiling he held out the wine and ordered "Drink". Ares reached for the cup but was stopped by a shake of Iolaus' head, so instead he leant forward and drank from the same spot that Iolaus has done.

Iolaus stroked his hand through Ares' hair before pushing the waistcoat finally off his body. His skilful hands quickly tied a Bowman's loop in a length of rope and slipped it around Ares' right wrist. He tightened the loop and then passed the two lose ends behind the gods back and gently held them in his other hand. Ares arm was forced behind his back. Iolaus took another sip of wine this time holding it in his mouth. He leaned forward and kissed Ares' open mouth. The taste of wine and Iolaus was a heady mixture and it took all of Ares' willpower not to break free of the bindings and grab him. Iolaus took advantage of the god's distraction to form another loop and slip it over the left wrist. Ares sat on the edge of the bed. His arms bound behind him. The shadows cast by the candlelight highlighted the planes of his chest. The bulge in his leather pants gave evidence of the enjoyment this game was bringing.

Iolaus picked up a length of the torn tablecloth and quickly tied a knot in the center, leaning over Ares he planted a quick kiss on his lips before tying the cloth in the god's mouth making sure the knot was behind his teeth. Another section of cloth soon covered his eyes and Iolaus gently pushed the bound, gagged and blindfolded man backward to rest against the pillows.

He quickly removed the reclining figure's boots and started work on the pants. The ever-growing bulge and the tightness of the leather proved a mild hindrance despite the assistance of raised hips. Soon Iolaus stood back to enjoy the view. The nude man reclined against the bed. His body as perfect as any sculptured work of art but living and breathing and a quality of sensuousness that no artist could ever recreate. The ropes and cloth that bound it enhanced the perfection of his body.

Ares lay perfectly still. He could feel the eyes that roved over him, rejoicing in the illusion of helplessness and vulnerability it gave him. He was content to wait.

Iolaus picked up two of the long lengths of ropes and proceeded to tie them round the upper thighs several times he then quickly tied the ankles to the corner bedpost leaving Ares spread-eagled. He loosed the ends that tied the gods' hands behind his back and re-tied each one separately to the ropes at the tops of his thighs.

Time to play.

He quickly shucked his cloths and lay down beside the bound figure making sure that one of Ares bound hands could reach his cock. He thrust against the open palm until the fingers closed round him and began to gently tug at him.

Iolaus ran his hands down the bare chest enjoying the feel of the skin below his hands, in fact, it felt so good he did it again, this time brushing his fingertips over Ares' sides. A quick twitch informed him that the God of War was ticklish.

"Well, well, who would have thought it." Scraping his fingertips over the kidney area, he was rewarded by muffled protests and an attempt to wiggle away from the reaching fingers. This was too good. Iolaus used his weight to subdue the movements and went to work with a vengeance.

His fingers were relentless as they stroked and petted the ticklish flesh relentlessly. Ares squirmed and twisted trying to escape. His efforts were fruitless as he lay exposed to Iolaus's fingers. Eventually Iolaus relented and his movements became more caressing. He stroked and petted every inch of available flesh. Gently pinching nipples, nibbling at his jawline, threading his fingers through the long black hair. Like an epicure at a feast he took his time and tasted each delight in turn.

Iolaus stood back and surveyed his handiwork. The god of war lay before him.

His hair was slick with sweat, his eyes blindfolded, his nostrils flaring as he deeply drew in oxygen to calm his panting. His teeth bit deeply into the cloth that gagged him. A pulse beat heavily in his neck echoing the frantic heartbeats in the wide chest. A fine sheen covered the torso, the black hair swirled into little curls that vee'd into a thicker wiry mass from which his large erection rose. It waved in the air demanding attention, a drop of pre-cum glistening at the eye. The strong legs parted, bound from thigh to knee with rope, holding the arms in place, each attempt to move them causing the legs to open wider exposing the vulnerable skin below. Iolaus let his eyes wander down the length of leg to the long sensuous feet. He allowed his hands to caress the toes, trailing up over the ankles lingering at the knees. The torturous slowness of the caress excited pleading whimpers from the victim. Finally he allowed his hand to curl around the straining cock and stroke the hard flesh. Ares' hips bucked as he tried to move into the waiting palm. Ioulas smiled at the feeling of power this gave him. It felt good to be in control for once. He rewarded Ares by tightening his grip round the shaft and stroking it in a steady, unhurried movement. He could tell the maddening effect his refusal to be hurried was having on him victim.

"Patience, Ares, patience. You won't be cuming until I say so. You can just rein yourself in, stallion."

"Stallion?" Just who did this cocky little mortal think he was talking to!

Ares decided he had had enough of these games and was about to break the ropes and put Iolaus's cheeky mouth to better use when in a moment of consensus Iolaus' dipped his head and engulfed the tip of Ares cock with his moist warm lips. Ares almost came there and then when he felt the tongue swirl round the head. Iolaus kept a rhythmic stroking on the base of the cock as he bobbed up and down gradually swallowing more and more of the length. Ares couldn't think anymore. All he could do was feel. His whole being was centered around that warm wicked mouth that was driving him insane. He arched his hips upward towards paradise's doors and with a harsh cry only partly muffled by the gag shot his load into the mortal's mouth. His seed seemed to spurt endlessly and Iolaus was fully occupied trying to swallow it all. Finally, after what seemed an age, the last spasm ended and he sank, exhausted but sated, back onto the bed.

Iolaus took a few moments to lap up the remaining spilled seed before addressing him.

"Did I give you permission to cum? I think not. Now I'm going to have to punish you."

Before Ares could collect his thoughts Iolaus had untied the ropes that bound the ankles to the bed and pulled and twisted his body so that he was kneeling, face down. His legs on the floor, his torso across the bed, his bare ass raised up and his arms still firmly bound to the outside of his upper thighs.

Ares felt a shiver of anticipation as Iolaus ran his hand over the exposed buttocks, slithered a nail on the tender flesh between the anus and the base of this cock and gently ran a fingertip over the tight, puckered flesh.

What he didn't expect was the hard slap that followed. The noise of it echoed round the bedchamber and Ares jumped in surprise. A second slap followed, this one stung a bit more as it landed on the same place as the first. More spanks in quick succession while Iolaus counted to ten. He then paused to admire his handiwork. One of Ares' buttocks was bright red from the force of the blows, the flesh slightly swollen.

"I can stop now if you like" he offered the wargod. "Or I can finish off the other side. Your choice, do you want me to stop?"

Ares paused to consider the pain he was feeling. His ass felt on fire but it was a good, clean pain. Actually, he felt lopsided. He suddenly knew that what he wanted most in the world at this moment was for Iolaus to even him up and spank him again. Remembering Iolaus's question he grunted "No". Iolaus obviously understood him because he immediately started the hard spanking again. Not pausing until he reached a second count of ten.

Iolaus smiled with pride at the sight of the bright red cheeks. Now to soothe the pain. He reached for the bottle of oil he had acquired earlier and rubbed some into his palms. He then gently began to massage the misused flesh. Working his knuckles deep into the flesh, letting his hands roam in ever widening circles. He replenished the oil on his hands and this time began to focus on the valley guarded by the two red mounts. He worked his way inward, until, as if my accident his finger slipped into the tight hole. At Ares' grunt of half pleasure, half pain he began to work the finger back and forth working other fingers in beside it.

He made a thorough job of oiling him and then carefully oiled himself. He had to pause for a moment to regain control. The excitement of what he was doing almost threatened to overwhelm him as he coated his cock in oil. Once he had gathered a measure of self-composure he placed the head of this cock just outside Ares anus. Before he began he leant forward and untied the gag from Ares mouth planting a quick kiss at the back of his neck before pressing forward and slipping easily past the ring of muscles. He paused before pushing further in.

"More, I want more!" Ares urged him on but Iolaus would not be rushed. He paused, entering him inch by inch until finally he was embedded. Only then did the frantic motion Ares was trying to initiate. He pulled back, until he was almost all the way out, then pushed forward in one hard motion. Again and again he pumped Ares subtly changing his angle with each forward motion until he found the way to perfectly hit the prostate gland at each pass.

Ares was beyond words now, screaming and thrashing as he urged Iolaus on and on. When Iolaus was sure he must cum soon he reached round the body below him and grasped the other man. Soon both their cries mingled in a satisfied scream as they collapsed on the bed, Iolaus on top of Ares.

How long they lay like that Iolaus could not tell. Finally his heart stopped pounding as if it wanted to break free from his chest and he drew himself up. He cut Ares free and used the remainders of the much mis-used tablecloth to clean them both up. Ares finally stirred and Iolaus found himself almost shy to meet his eyes. He didn't want to hear some smarmy comment that would belittle the intense experience he had just had. But none were forthcoming. Ares just crawled between the cool clean sheets (one of the advantages of divinity - never having to sleep on the wet spot) and held them open for Iolaus to join him. Ares met his eye and leaned forward for a long, tender, slow kiss before curling up on Iolaus's chest and going to sleep. Iolaus was total bemused by the way all this had turned out. He stroked the hair of his sleeping lover and let himself drift off to sleep. He would worry about what it all meant tomorrow.

Part 3

Iolaus slowly drifted towards consciousness.  A feeling of well-being surrounding him. As he focused, he became aware of a warm, wet mouth sucking his cock. He opened his eyes and saw Ares' head between his thighs. The gods hands were pinning Iolaus' hips firmly down as he tried to buck up into the welcoming mouth.

His scream of completion echoed around the room and he watched Ares raise his head and licked his lips, cleaning away all the semen that had missed his mouth.

"What a way to say good morning" Iolaus commented shakily as his heartbeat slowed to normal.

"I've always been a firm believer that actions speak louder than words." Ares grinned back at him. "...and speaking of action..." He glanced down at his own erection, which jutted out from his body, demanding attention "I'm in need of some hot and heavy action right now."

Iolaus grinned at him.

"I can see that." He lifted his legs onto Ares shoulders exposing his ass "Help yourself."

Ares didn't need to be told twice. He adjusted Iolaus' legs then after wetting his thumb he pushed it against the muscles. For a moment he was denied entrance and then his thumb slipped passed the tight ring into the waiting heat of Iolaus' body.

"Aaaahhh." Iolaus' moan was partly pain, partly pleasure.

Ares bent his thumb to widen the entrance and then slipped two fingers inside Iolaus. In small movements he began to rub back and forth and scissors his fingers, as he felt Iolaus loosen he moved his index finger all the way inside the warm passage and then gently crooked it and stroked gently. Iolaus' ecstatic response told him he had managed to locate his prostate.

He continued to stroke the man below him, with his other hands he cupped his testicles then started to rub his cock. Iolaus, despite having already come only minutes before, was writhing in pleasure at this double assault.

"Please, Ares. I want to feel you inside me. Now!" Iolaus begged.

Ares chuckled at his lover's impatience but removed his fingers from within Iolaus and replaced it with the head of his cock. He watched himself slip inside the waiting flesh, stretching it, filling Iolaus completely.

Ares paused momentarily allowing Iolaus to adjust to the feeling of the large cock inside him and then he began to move. Small thrusts initially and then when he felt Iolaus start to push back against him, he changed to a harder, deeper rhythm.

The small man below him became even more vocal in his encouragement.

"Please, by the gods, please...touch me...oh...please...oh. Fuck. Yes"

Ares grasped the other man's cock and Iolaus began to fuck himself on the large hand holding him. Ares pushed his cock into Iolaus while Iolaus pushed into Ares' hand. Their mutual pleasuring soon had both nearing climax.

Ares opened his eyes and looked into the clear blue eyes of Iolaus. In the past he had seen those eyes look at him with fear, with loathing, with contempt and hatred, now they were filled only with warmth and pleasure.

Iolaus gave a hoarse scream and filled Ares' hand with his seed. Then Ares was beyond thinking as wave after wave of pleasure hit him as he climaxed into the waiting body.


Ares felt a wave of anger that Iolaus should call his brother's name at such a moment. Then he saw that Iolaus was staring at the door with a shocked look on his face. He turned his head slightly and there, standing in the doorway, stood Hercules.

"Hercules," he echoed Iolaus, startled by his brothers unexpected appearance "I thought it would take you another half day at least to get back here."

"I ran," Hercules answered shortly. He couldn't take his eyes of the couple on the bed even though he desperately wanted to turn away. He devoured the sight of them, one blond, one dark; their bodies so intertwined that they flowed into each other.

Ares removed himself from Iolaus' body and Iolaus hastily lowered his legs.

There was silence as all three waited for the other to speak.

Hercules finally broke the silence.

"Iolaus, you're all right?"

"Yes, Herc, never better." Iolaus winced slightly as these words left his mouth. Perhaps it wasn't the best answer he could have given.

"So I see," Hercules answered grimly. On the nightmare journey back here he had envisioned Ares inflicting all sorts of damage on his friend. Instead, when he had finally managed to reach the temple it was to find Iolaus in the throes of passion with Ares. He had been watching them for minutes before Iolaus had spotted him, unable to tear his eyes away from the erotic sight as Ares had stroked and pounded Iolaus.

He was stunned to recognized the emotion he was feeling as jealousy. He wanted to be the one who was fucking Iolaus' ass. But he also wanted to be the one that Ares was pounding into. He shook his head in confusion. He was tired, too little sleep. He didn't know what he was thinking.

Maybe it was the tiredness and confusion that allowed Ares to read his thoughts. Because he suddenly held out a hand to Hercules and said.

"Join us brother, come and have some fun."

Hercules jaw dropped open and he started to shake his head. But when Iolaus turned to him, held out his hand and pleaded.

"Please, Herc?"

Hercules was as surprised as anyone when a "Yes," issued from his lips and he moved from the doorframe to join them on the bed. He sat on the edge of the bed, fully clothed, embarrassed, not knowing what to do next.

This was not a problem for the other two. Iolaus helped him remove his yellow shirt while Ares knelt in front of him and unlaced his boots pulling them off and then moved towards Hercules' belt.

Hercules automatically covered the belt but Iolaus removed his hands gently saying, "Let me." Hercules stood obediently as his belt was removed, his pants unlaced and tugged down his long legs. Then he was as naked as the other two, his face red and blushing as his half-erect penis was exposed to the vulpine eyes of his companions.

Iolaus grinned, breaking the tension as he reached out and patted Hercules on his backside. "Think of it like the first day at the Academy."

Hercules gave an unexpected snort of laughter as he remembered that hideous day but Iolaus' comment helped him relax and he lay back on the bed between his friend and his brother.

Iolaus immediately ran his hands down Hercules' chest and met his eyes. "I'm glad you've agreed to join us, Herc. I've wanted this for such a long time."

Ares caressed him from hip to ankle. "I think we can make sure you don't regret it"

Hercules moaned as a hot, velvet tongue entered his mouth and explored thoroughly. He heard Ares' soft whimper and shuddered at the sound. His brother was taking his pleasure from him - Hercules, his long time enemy - and there was going to be more. This went beyond his wildest dreams.

Strong, callused hands touch his waist and Hercules broke the kiss, looking round at Iolaus. Iolaus pressed his naked body against Hercules' own, kissing him with slow, deliberate passion. Hercules felt the softer, cooler fingers of the god touching his chest, stroking at the hair covering it, teasing at his nipples and he moved away, gasping.

"No more. I'm going to disgrace myself."

Ares smiled, then steered Hercules to the newly conjured bath. "Get in," he said. Hercules did as he was told and Ares joined him. The bath was a huge, marble-sheathed sunken thing, plenty of room for all three. Hercules settled into the hot water and let out a groan. It felt so good on his tired muscles. He looked up at Iolaus, who was standing there, looking down on him, a soft smile on his lips.

"Aren't you coming in?"

Iolaus nodded and slipped into the tub. Hercules stared at his body, need contracting his balls.

"That feels good," he whispered.

Iolaus watched as Ares moved over to his brother and kissed him gently, rubbing at his shoulders, then picking up one of the natural sea sponges that were perfect for washing down a tired, sweaty body. He began to run it over Hercules' skin, kissing him lightly all over.

Iolaus also wanted to touch. He moved to the demigod's other side and gently ran his fingers over the satin flesh, marveling at its smoothness. He'd wanted Hercules for as long as he could remember and this was perfect, making love to him and his beautiful brother at the same time.

Ares reached over and caught Iolaus' hair, pulling him across Hercules' body for another kiss. They continued to stroke Hercules as they remained lip-locked and Iolaus felt Ares' hands running smoothly over his back and down to his crack, his fingers tickling at the sensitive puckering of his entrance.

Once more, he broke away, his cock aching. It had been so long since he'd had the pleasure of a lover. These two - the man he loved and the god he'd always opposed both at once, were starting to drive him crazy.

Ares seemed to understand his feelings, because he grinned. "Too much, huh?" he asked.

"Overwhelming," Hercules muttered, his eyes closed, face serene.

Ares turned his attention to Iolaus' body, washing him over with the sponge, mindful of the little cuts and bruises on his body from their previous bout. Iolaus lay back and let him, finding it strange that a god was now washing him, acting the body servant.

At last, Ares took he upper hand and told them to get out of the bath. Both, surprisingly, did as they were told. Still wet, they moved to the bed. Iolaus watched as Ares once more, began to pay attention to his brother, kissing and stroking him, as he lifted him onto the large bed, never touching the long cock that reared up from its nest of curls. Iolaus could see that Hercules was aroused, a trickle of clear fluid gathered at his cock head, glistening enticingly.

Iolaus joined them on the bed and lightly licked at the wetness, tasting his friend's arousal for the first time. Hercules moaned and his hips lifted a little, wanting more. Iolaus settled down to suckle at the hot cock, deciding that this was a dream.

Ares joined him and together they took turns, slowly licking and sucking, pausing to kiss passionately, Iolaus, aware of Hercules' soft groans of need, of Ares' damp dark hair tickling his skin, of his own desire, burning a slow, deep heat into his belly and balls.

Hercules lost all track of time. He knew that Ares bore him to the mattress, could feel both god and hunter kissing and licking him all over. He felt teeth nip at his body - small bursts of pain coupled with more pleasure. He knew he was pleading with them for release, knew none of them had yet taken that much needed step. All that existed in his world right then, was the frantic desire to come, yet, at the same time, he wanted this to continue forever.

The musky scent of myrrh oil brought him back to reality. Ares was astride him, slowly massaging his body with the precious fluid. His hands went down to Hercules' cock and wrapped around it, the fingers slick with oil. Hercules moaned, feeling a slow burning, the myrrh settled into heat and lust. Hercules needed to sink his aching cock somewhere - release the urgency building in him like a swollen riverbank.

Ares got off him and smiled down. "I know what you need," he whispered, his voice a rough purr. "Take him."

Hercules' eyes flared open. He sat up and saw Ares settle at the bed head. Iolaus was on his knees, golden ass cheeks offered enticingly to Hercules, slowly and lasciviously sucking Ares' cock.

Hercules whimpered.

Ares' dark brown eyes met his, then he moaned softly, thrusting his hips further upwards. Iolaus deep-throated him and Ares bit his lip, a bead of sweat trickling down his cheek. Hercules moved behind Iolaus, looking down at the slim back, stroking him, feeling the slide of oil under his fingers. His friend shone with it. He explored further down, touching his fingers to the hunter's hole, smiling as Iolaus groaned a little, never easing his attentions to Ares' cock. He thrust a single finger inside the hunter and the groan turned to a muffled squeal.

Another finger joined the first and Iolaus lifted his mouth from Ares' cock. He let out a feline cry and urged Hercules to fuck him, his voice a throaty plea. Hercules swallowed hard. He had never done this before and the first person he was to penetrate, was the man who had been his best friend forever. He moved forward, stroking the trembling body beneath him and carefully pushed his glistening cock slowly inside Iolaus.

Ares, with a rasping cry, chose that moment to come. He shut his eyes, writhing beneath Iolaus' skilled lips and tongue, muscles standing out in tension, thrusting further into his lover's mouth. His climax sent shivers down Hercules' spine and he drove forward, sheathing his cock into the moist heat of Iolaus' body. Iolaus whimpered, laying his head in Ares' lap. Ares stroked his lover's hair, and Iolaus moved further upwards, kissing the god of war fiercely.

Hercules grit his teeth and tried to make this last. He saw Ares reach beneath his lover, felt him stroke at Iolaus' cock. The hunter's muscles tightened around Hercules and he gasped, speeding up his movement in and out of Iolaus' ass. Iolaus began to moan loudly, his voice breathy and hoarse.

Hercules, too, moved his hand to stroke Iolaus, meeting Ares' hand. As Ares pumped his lover, Hercules rubbed the head with his palm, in smooth, roundabout movements. Iolaus screamed out and exploded into Hercules' fingers, his whole body shuddering.

No more could Hercules hold on. He was way too excited. He let out his own cry of release and jolted, ramming hard a final time into the tight, pulsing body impaled on his cock, feeling his seed spurt and fill his friend. He let out the breath he'd been holding in a great gasp and bowed his head over Iolaus' spine. He kissing the heated, sweating skin, tasted his salt and felt it sting his lips.

Iolaus fell into Ares' lap, moaning softly, his hair disarrayed into a mass of damp curls that spread over Ares' thighs like a blanket.

Hercules withdrew from him and collapsed in a heap next to the couple, breathing hard. "By the gods..." he whispered. "That was... it was..."

"Good?" Ares finished for him. He was lying on his back, a sated grin on his face, Iolaus, still lying where he'd fallen. Hercules noticed their hands were clasped tightly, as if never wanting to let go.

He just nodded in reply and rearranged himself more comfortably. Iolaus rolled over and lay his head on Hercules chest.

"Well, I'm sure there'll be more," Ares said softly. "Rest for now." Hercules smiled and reached out to put his hand on top of the lovers' entangled fingers. "Thanks," he murmured and let himself drift off into a dazed, but happy slumber.

Iolaus stayed awake for a few moments longer glorying in the feeling of Hercules' chest beneath his head. How his life had changed in these two days. Here he was, sleeping in the bed of a deadly enemy; lover to his long-time compatriot and all thanks to the evil bitch Discord. He wished he could thank her - just to see her face -but that would probably be pushing it a bit. That reminded him ... he had better look Autolycus up and warn him that she was on the rampage...

Iolaus drifted off to sleep sandwiched safely between his two lovers. This had been a strange couple of days.