A Reinvention Story

Artemis and I were relaxing in the pools with Ares, Athena and Dionysus. It was a beautiful day…until Dad stormed out of the house. 

“You’re getting jobs.” He did not sound happy. He was pointing towards Ares and Dionysus, so like the good brother I am, I started laughing and pointing. 

“Ha, you suckers have to get jobs. Good one, Dad.” 

Zeus put his hands on his hips and looked down at me and Arty. “Don’t laugh, son. This includes you and your sister.” 

My eyes widened and my jaw dropped open. Arty punched my shoulder and said, “You always gotta run your mouth. If you would have just shut up, we probably could have gotten out of this.” 

She climbed out of the pool, kissed Zeus’s cheek and whispered something in his ear. Zeus smiled as Arty walked away. 

I wanted to know what she said, but I had bigger fish to fry. I climbed out of the pool and stood next to my father. 

“Dad, come on, it’s me, your favorite son. You don’t really want me to get a job, do you?” I gave him my best puppy dog look, but it didn’t even phase him.

“It’s about time that you kids do something with your lives. Enough mooching off me.” 

I was flabbergasted. I’ve been doing stuff around here since I killed Python. You see, Arty and I are the product of one of Dad’s, well, let’s say, extracurricular activities. I mean, Hera was so mad at my mother that she sent the primordial creature Python after her. The beast wouldn’t let Mom settle down to have us. 

That’s ok though, because guess who got the last laugh? That’s right, me. At just four days old, I made my way to the workshop of Hephaestus and asked him for a weapon. Hephaestus gave me a gold bow with golden arrows. 

I tracked the beast to Delphi and killed him. 

Boom, mic drop.

I gave Dad my best smile, which is pretty amazing to see. “Don’t worry, Pop. I’ll make you proud.” 

He slapped my shoulder and smiled. “That’s my boy. Go get ‘em, Apollo.” 

Later that night, I was sitting near a fire, staring up at the stars and thinking, what kind of job should I get? I’m the god of archery, music, poetry… well, pretty much everything awesome. So my job had to be awesome as well. 

My favorite things to do are archery and music, so I figured I would head to LA and talk to some superheroes. 

I visited the man who I thought was the Green Arrow, and it turns out he’s just a mortal named Stephen Amell. All of them are fake like that Amell guy. Can you believe that? What? You knew that? Damn it, why didn’t you tell me? 

So with the superhero thing a bust, I checked out my second favorite thing, music. 

I headed to the Beverly Wilshire and rented their 5000 square foot penthouse suite. It was beautiful and fit for a god of my stature. 

I reclined on the sectional and wondered how to break into the music business. The first thing I would do is put out an ad. It read, Awesome God of music in search of bandmates. Come to the penthouse suite at the Beverly Wilshire if interested. Perfect. 

My first call came from a woman named Star. She was a tall, slender woman with caramel-colored skin and poofy hair. She wanted to be something called a groupie. Apparently a groupie travels around with a band. Star said that she would attend to any needs I may have, whatever that might mean. I quickly learned what Star can do, and after a three-day bender of alcohol and sex, I asked her an important question. 

“How does one become a rock God?” We were lying in bed and she had her head on my chest. 

“You could always start by going to an open mic night. Once people hear your voice, they will fight to be in your band.” 

Ahh, yes, go somewhere and sing. 

Star lifted her head up. “Do you know what you want to call your band?”

I sat up against the wall. There was only one name I would take – The Hyacinths. 

Star sat cross-legged on the bed. 

“The Hyacinths.” 

Star cocked her head. “The flower?” 

I gave her a nod. “Yes, named after someone I once loved.” 

Star’s eyes fluttered, and she smiled brightly. “Aww. That is so cute.” 

I smiled at her as I reminisced about the love of my life. She’d been killed in jealousy, right in front of me. I shook my head and wondered if I would ever really get over that one. I sloughed off the bad feeling and clapped my hands together.

“Where should we go first?” 

Star jumped to her feet and giddily clapped. “Ooh, ooh, ooh, I know the perfect place.” 

She took me to a place called a mall. The Rodeo Drive Mall, to be exact. She said it had all the best stores. Two hours and a bag of drachma later, I had on some fancy jeans, a black tank top, and a velvet trilby. 

Next, she brought me to a place called Max Karaoke Studio. So it turns out that this studio is nothing more than a place for mortals to get drunk and make fools of themselves. Star introduced me to quite a few drinks, most of which were terrible compared to the wine on Mount Olympus. My brother Dionysis makes this ambrosia mixture that is to die for, but that’s besides the point. 

Star pulled me through the crowd and up to the DJ. “You’re gonna want to push this one to the top, Alpha.” 

He gave her a nod, and she moved in close to my ear. 

“Alpha will get you up soon. Just tell him what song you want to sing.” She gave me a kiss on the cheek and bounced her way to the dance floor. 

The Alpha DJ person leaned towards me. 

“What’cha want to sing?”

I didn’t have to think at all. I knew what song I wanted to be my first. I looked at him and said, “Bohemian Rhapsody, mortal DJ.” 

He pulled his oversized glasses down to look me eye to eye. After a moment, he pushed them back up and said, “It’s your funeral, bro. What do I call you?” 

“Apollo,” I answered. The DJ shook his head again and went back to the music. The song ended and the DJ man took the mic.

“Yo yo yo, DJ Alpha in the house. How we doing out there?” The crowd responded with a yell. 

“We got us a newcomer coming up next. Ladies and gentlemen please put your hands together for…APOLLO!” 

The crowd yelled and clapped as he carried out my name. This mortal is quite good at riling up the people. I walked over to the singing area and waited for the piano to start. The crowd was a mix of intrigue and laughter. I gave them all a half smile and sang.

“Mama…” And it hooked them all. I slid through the crowd as I continued. 

“Too late…” I felt every one of them. Every thought of love, of longing, of lust. I finished the song with.

“Matters to me…” and the crowd went nuts with the outro of the piano. 

I smiled as I thought of the old days, when people worshipped our every move. This outpouring of love felt much like those times. I soaked it all in. I knew this was where I needed to be. 

By the end of the night, I had my entire band and another thirty groupies. I was feeling so good that I invited the whole bar back to my suite. We drank and ate like it was the old times. I spent the next 72+ hours enjoying the finer things in life…the body. I was so enthralled that I almost forgot what I was meant to do here.

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Apollo (Chris Smolinski)
Chris Smolinski is working on being a published author. He is married with three kids, two of whom have autism. He is a stay-at-home father, so he has lots of time for writing, and yet, does not always get the time to a ton done. He loves American football (Fly Eagles Fly) and has multiple championships in fantasy football. He loves to read and listen to audiobooks. His favorite book is Nightlord by Garon Whited and his favorite narrator is Sean Runnette. He is ecstatic that Apollo chose him to be his scribe.
Apollo (Chris Smolinski)

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