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Leothor, Gorgon


For eons, I have lived in solitude, listening to the wave’s crash on the rocks just outside my mountain cave. Only when the sky turns purple do I venture out to gather food and drink from the nearby inland streams. 
I was one of the truly immortal beings, along with only 2 others, among those that were not Gods that is.
Only once has a man who had the chance to escape spotted me, and I had to chase him for almost 100 yards before his screams were brought to an end.

The ocean below my cave is littered with the remains of countless travelers who ventured too close to my sanctuary, evidence that I was in the area which had to be destroyed.
Word must not reach my sisters’ ears, especially the mortal one, for if she were to find me, then I would surely die and then she may ingest my power of immortality. If that were to happen, I fear the world would never have peace, so I hide for the good of the planet’s continued existence.
The two of my sisters that share my immortal gene would not wish me harm, in fact it was they that advised me to run and avoid a confrontation with the youngest of our brood.
I wonder if they miss me, if they are capable of the human emotions that I have inherited from the habitation that lies a mile to the South.
My food supply for the week has run out, so tonight I must go and replenish, I hope this does not lead me to any stray men.
I am Gorgon, the only male in history, my name is Leothor, and should anyone ever read this, know one thing, Medusa is to be avoided, for her evil and desire has potential to destroy civilizations.



Leothor snuck in close to the village in order to hear what the men were talking about.  He’d heard something that reminded him of Medusa and he needed to know what was happening in the world.

The three men were huddled around a fire in front of a hut made of wood and rocks and fronds.  They each drank deep from tin cups in their hands and gnawed relentlessly on joints of meat they had pulled from some unrecognizable creature on a spit over the fire.

Their conversation was whispered, and it was evident they were frightened.  Leothor could only catch snippets, but they were enough.

“My brother swears he saw the thing in the caves, it moved like a snake but stood like a man.”

“It had hair like snakes, they were moving all the time.”

“He says he saw a man go into the cave to prove bravery, only to hear a scream and then no more.  One other man who was brave enough to go into start of cave says he saw the other man standing, now as a statue of stone.”

“The gorgon woman is on the move, that is what I heard the elders discussing.  They think we should move our village.”

“I think we should stay and fight, it is only one monster, we have many men, many weapons, we can strike.  The head is very valuable; we can sell it for much money, or use it for a weapon for ourselves.”

Leothor moved away from the village and took his time going back to his cave.  He was wary and jumped at every noise in the forest even though he knew the woods better than anything alive did.  He knew this day would come, knew she would come for him.  She wanted his immortality, his everlasting power.

He would have to stand and fight, this was true, but first he would journey home, to see his other sisters, his parents, and learn as much as he could before showing himself to Medusa again.

Leothor traveled only at night, and slept in caves or barrows while the sun was blazing across the sky.  He returned to his home birthplace Rome a month after he spied upon the tribesmen.  He was shocked at the sight of the shrine where the Gorgon had lived; it was in ruins, rubble strewn about.  Statues crumbled to the ground.  Pieces of faces staring at him from shattered stone effigies.

He turned his glaring gaze out to sea, cursing his mother and father for giving birth to such a monstrous brood of evil. His dark thoughts were interrupted by the bodies of his mother and father lying on the rocks below the cliff where he stood.

Unfurling his wings, he flew down to the water, and hovered over them for a few moments.  He drank in the vision of their broken stone bodies, and wondered that Medusa was this strong now, able to defeat both of their parents in battle.

Leothor shook his entire body, and flew back to the cliff, prepared to find the bodies of the two sisters with whom he shared immortality.

He came upon Euryale first, and she was as he had expected and dreaded, broken into many pieces of casually discarded stone.  The only tear he would ever shed rolled down his cheek for Euryale; she had been his closest and most loved sibling.  Next to Leothor, Euryale was the least evil and least likely to kill simply to kill.

He constructed a cairn of stones from the shrine and then gathered the remains of Euryale.  He held a tiny little ceremony then for his only true loss and went in search of Stheno, his eldest sister.

It had always been believed that Stheno held an immunity to Medusa within her, and turning a corner in the labyrinth below their shrine, Leothor discovered this was true.

Stheno lay face down in a pool of blood, wings beating faintly, claws scratching weakly at the walls.  She was trying to turn over, and Leothor hurried to her side, and turned her over, holding her close to his breast.

At first, Stheno leaned into him, comforted by the fact that someone had come, then she exploded into a fit of rage, shoving him away from her.

“You fool” she spat at him, “Coming back here was exactly what she wanted.  She could not steal our immortality, and she knew she would have to lure you back from wherever it was you were hiding.  Now all is doomed, she has won.”

“Stheno, I came home to learn more about our younger sister and the depths of her power.  I need to fight her, end her life, and allow the world to continue in its own fashion.”

“She is more powerful than you would believe, she has the power of stone, she has also earned the power of our mother and father, although only she knows what that is now.  She will be unstoppable, and one weak Gorgon male cannot hope to end her reign.”

She turned her head away from Leothor and faced the cave wall, “Go Leothor, hide again, that is the only hope for your world.”

Stheno died in his arms, and he left her where she’d died.  He had no love lost for Stheno, and now his hatred was peaking for Medusa that she would slaughter her entire family for one small chance that he would give her his power.

Leothor stood within the cave entrance, unseen from the outside, and contemplated his next move.  He would engage Medusa in a life or death game of chess, whichever of them won would decide the fate of the world. 

He stepped outside and was startled by the arrow that had embedded into his shoulder.  He had time to pluck it out and marvel at the shadow that loomed over his when he was tackled to the ground.  A hissing came in ear, “

You should not have come dear brother, now immortality will be mine and you will be no more.  The Gorgon will live on forever in me, I hold all the power.  This world will be mine.”

“Medusa, why have you murdered all of the family?  Why are you so filled with hate?”

“I hate because that is what I was born to do.  I am Gorgon, my blood runs with hatred for all life.”

Leothor seized his only chance now that he had her bragging and talking, her grasp slackened on him.  He reached around with one arm and grabbed her by the neck, pulling her close in an embrace. 

He had time to recognize a look of surprise on her face before he shoved his arm, still holding the arrow, towards her temple.  Her shriek echoed off the waves and cliffs for miles.  Men, women and children in villages speckled around the countryside shuddered in their beds and pulled their coverings in tighter. 

They hoped whatever beast was out there screeching wouldn’t came their way.

Medusa stood over the body of Leothor, a broken stone arrow in his hand.  His immortality was hers; the last stepping-stone had fallen.  Now, she could silently go after Zeus and all his Gods and take this world and the heavens for her own.

All of those who knew her secret were dead.  No one left alive knew that her immortal self could only be killed by cutting off her head, Leothor had been the last.


On Mount Olympus, Zeus was deep in conversation with Hades.

“She has won, Leothor has failed.  Now what do we do Zeus?  Your plan was weak to begin with.”

“Hades, brother, hope never dies.  Even now, there is a human woman who bears my seed within her.  She will give birth to the one who will have the best chance at conquering Medusa.”

“Yes, but…”

“Enough!  My plans are the law, and you will follow them.  Even if she turns us all to stone, if my seed produces the champion who defeats her, then it will not be for naught.  We will have died justly.”

“Very well, brother.  Your will be done, we will wait and see how this human champion fares.”

Zeus nodded and went silent, saddened by the loss of such a good being as Leothor.

Elsewhere, Medusa was making her plans and readying herself for war on the Gods.


From → Shorts

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