What happens after the happily-ever-after ending?
What happens after the cowboy rides off into the sunset?
What happens after the athlete wins an Olympic gold medal?
What happens after the hero completes his quest?
In general, we aren't too interested in finding out the answers to these questions. We prefer the happy ending and the big Hollywood finish. End of story. However, Heracles' story doesn't wrap up so neatly. Just when we think he's about to ride off into the sunset after completing the Twelve Labors, he gets himself into trouble again. And again. And again.
This later phase in Heracles' life is full of many little adventures, and each of these adventures teaches Heracles something new. While they pale in comparison to the Twelve Labors, it's interesting to see that a great hero like Heracles continues to struggle through life. He's still very human and pretty darn flawed. Completing the Twelve Labors was a HUGE, godlike accomplishment. However, the story of Heracles' Later Adventures and Death shows us that he wrestles with the ups and downs of life just like the rest of us.
From tragic love affairs, to brutal wars, to a stint as a cross-dresser, Heracles' life wasn't dull even for a second. Sit back, relax, and check out the final years of the guy who put the H in hero.