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Interview with Minotaur

Judge: The Honorable Hades, Lord of the Dead
Plaintiff: Asterion of Crete, also know as the Minotaur
Defendant: Theseus, former King of Athens
Also present: Cerberus
Alleged Crime: First Degree Murder

[In the throne room of Hades, King of the Dead, Hades sits on his throne of skulls, casually petting Cerberus, his three-headed, snake-haired demon dog. Asterion stands before the Lord of the Underworld, with his muscled arms crossed and his big bull-nostrils flared impatiently.]

Asterion: He can't even bother to show up?!

Hades: Patience.

Asterion: He's not taking this seriously. He should be thrown into Tartarus on principle.

Hades: You're already dead. What's the rush?

[The sound of someone stumbling in the hallway outside the throne room. Cerberus jumps up and starts barking, excited that someone is coming.]

Cerberus: Bark! Bark! Bark! Hissssssssssssssssssss....

[Theseus stumbles in, sipping an enormous margarita and wearing a bright Hawaiian shirt.]
Theseus: Hello, people! I was having a few drinks with Jason and Perseus on the beach and... oh, you know how the time goes.

Asterion: He's drunk! Do you see this, Lord Hades? Throw him in the black pit of Tartarus! I demand it.

Hades: I'll be the judge here, Asterion.

Theseus: Forgive him, Lord, he always did have a bad temper.

Asterion: Forgive me? Me?

Hades: Enough. I'd like to bring this court to order. Please Asterion, state your—

Cerberus: Hisssss... bark!

Hades: [Petting his pooch] Quiet Cerberus. Hush. There's a good boy. Now Asterion, state your—

Asterion: Lord, do we have to have this beast in the courtroom?

Theseus: I wouldn't be calling anyone a beast if I were you.

Asterion: What's that supposed to mean?

Theseus: Lord, your adorable pooch just wants a little sippy sip of my margarita. He developed a taste for them the last time you and Persephone came down to my beach house in the Elysians.

Hades: Verily, he may sip.

[Cerberus laps at Theseus' margarita with all three heads.]
Hades: Aw, isn't that sweet.

Asterion: This is a travesty of justice.

Hades: Oh fine, Asterion... verily you may state your claims.

Asterion: You know good and well what I'm here for. Theseus came into the Labyrinth and murdered me in cold blood! His soul should be thrown into Tartarus instead of living the easy death in the Elysian Islands. He should scream for eternity as he falls endlessly through the black abyss.

Hades: Thank you, Asterion, I believe your position is clear. King Theseus, what do you have to say?

Theseus: Lord Hades, I'm surprised you're even entertaining this. This guy was a cannibal. He ate tons of Cretans—his own people—before they locked him up in the Labyrinth. And he ate tons of Athenians before I came along. Obviously, he deserved to die.

Asterion: Is it my fault I was born this way? Is it my fault my mom, Pasiphae, coupled with a bull? Is it my fault that I craved human flesh? A bull's gotta do what a bull's gotta do.

Theseus: I mean, it might not be your fault, but it's not like we could just let you go around eating people.

Asterion: I have anger problems, okay? Do you even know what it's like having the head of a bull?

Theseus: Nope, can't say that I do.

Asterion: Well, listen. My step-dad, King Minos, abandoned me in the Labyrinth. It messed me up.

Theseus: Big deal. My dad, King Aegus, abandoned me when I was a kid, too. No one's got it easy.

Asterion: It is a big deal! I should have been the King of Crete, not some monster in a maze!

Theseus: Okay, so your life wasn't fair. But you know? I had a lot of bad stuff happen to me, and I didn't go around eating people because of it.

Asterion: I'm not the one on trial here!

Theseus: Maybe, you should be, dude.

[Asterion lowers his horns and charges Theseus. They wrestle fiercely on the floor. Cerberus runs all around them, barking and hissing like crazy.]
Hades: Enough, enough...

[Asterion and Theseus ignore the Lord of the Dead. Theseus grabs Asterion by the horns and twists his head to the ground. The Minotaur's thick neck bulges under the strain.]

Hades: Cease this!

[With a huge snort, Asterion thrusts his head upward while Theseus is still fiercely gripping the horns. The Minotaur twirls his head around and around, spinning the hero's body like a helicopter blade. Cerberus thinks this is awesome and leaps to nip Theseus' ankles every time he whirls by.]

Hades: ENOUGH!

[The throne room shakes in the face of the Lord of the Dead's anger. Bones and dust fall from the ceiling as Asterion and Theseus are ripped apart by the will of Hades.]

Hades: I should toss you both into Tartarus for this insult!

Asterion: Forgive me, Lord. Please, no...

Theseus: This beast assaulted me... !

Hades: Silence! All shall hear my verdict.

Asterion and Theseus: Yes, Lord Hades.

Hades: Theseus: the next time you have a beach party, you must invite Asterion.

Asterion: What?

Theseus: Seriously?

Asterion: How does that make any sense?

Hades: Asterion, you were a cannibal. It wasn't wrong for Theseus to kill you.

Asterion: But—

Hades: But it also wasn't your fault that you were born the way you were. Your suffering should not continue after death.

Theseus: How is he suffering exactly?

Hades: Loneliness is greatest form of suffering, and I believe Asterion has had quite enough of being alone.

Asterion: Thank you, my Lord!

Hades: Asterion, you are now given access to the Elysian Islands, the place of the honored dead. There, on the bone-white beaches, Theseus will throw a marvelous beach party in your honor. Verily, there will be volleyball and margaritas.

Theseus: Oh my gods, what are Jason and Perseus going to say?

Hades: You will also invite me and my wife, Persephone. She has a new bikini that I would dearly like to see her wear.

Theseus: Well, they'll like that at least.

Hades: What was that?

Theseus: Nothing, Lord. Well, come on, Asterion, the last ferry to the Elysians leaves pretty soon.

Asterion: Thanks, Lord Hades. It's going to be a beautiful death.

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