"Especially with Poseidon's temper to deal with."
"Oh, he won't be much trouble now. He's been chastened."
"Too far to swim," I noted in a tone that left no doubt I wouldn't be immersing
myself again any time soon. Well, until the next hopefully warm bath anyway.
"Any suggestions then?"
"A short flight?" She whistled and her mare trotted into view. Like the renowned
flying horse of legend it had sprouted a pair of pristine wings and waited for a
cargo and an order to take to the sky.
It's something children dream about. To soar across the empyrean on a winged
steed. The ocean was aflame in the ascendant sun, deep blue fire that dazzled
the eyes. Xena whooped and vocalized her pure enjoyment and I held on tight,
eyes unblinking, brain furiously racing, taking in every aspect and sensation of
the flight. But I can't do it justice, you really had to be there, to experience
it for yourself. No mere description can capture the whisper of downy soft
feathers stroking the rarefied air as a magnificent though unlikely animal
gallops on the wind. The entire flight must've taken less than a minute,
literally a hop, skip and jump and we were on the shore again, Myridon--Artemis
awaiting us.
The delicate wings folded, receding somehow into the body of the beast, just a
horse once more. Argo trotted out of the woods and came down to the beach to
greet us.
Xena went to check her saddlebags, leaving us to say our farewells I supposed.
"I'll be keeping an eye on you from time to time-- don't worry, nothing
obtrusive. I would hope your ability to forgive would extend to me...as well as
to yourself. The dark side within... We all have one. Don't be too troubled by
it. You're only human. That's a compliment by the way." To Xena she said, "Take
care of each other." She mounted her horse, said, "Let's go, Delos," and rode
away down the beach.
I must've had a funny expression on my face when Xena caught my eye.
"What?" she asked.
"Nothing...a versatile animal that."
"Shh. You'll make Argo jealous."
"No need for that. Ever."
She nodded, smiled. "Home."
"What a lovely word. Already there."
"Me too."