Nemesis was tired. The goddess of revenge was rarely able to rest, there was always someone who wanted revenge. She sighed and focused on the current task at hand, as boring as it was. Venus wanted revenge. Not surprising, as hate often follows love. Nemesis and Venus would have been friends if the goddess of love wasn’t so air-headed, and if she didn’t always make so much extra work for Nemesis.
This time Venus wanted revenge on her son, Cupid. Apparently Venus sent him to punish a mortal girl for being pretty, and he didn’t do it quite the way his mother wanted. Typical. Revenge is best left the professionals. The idiot fell in love with the mortal girl and decided to marry her instead. So now I have to fix this mess, Nemesis thought.
After centuries of doing her job, Nemesis had perfected the art of getting other people to do her job for her. In this case she whispered in the mortal girl, Psyche’s sisters ears. She made them first fear for their sister, and then grow hateful and jealous when the finally found her. Humans are resourceful. Nemesis was sure the sister’s would find some way to ruin their sister’s happiness. Besides, there’s nothing quite like family to ruin a good day. Nemesis smiled at that though and started scheming on avoiding Venus in the future.
Later, time is hard for goddesses but it was definitely later, Nemesis was enjoying a well deserved rest when she was rudely interrupted.
“WHAT DID YOU DO?”
Psyche glared at Cupid from where she had been sleeping. “I didn’t do anything to that girl of yours. Her sisters however,” Nemesis shrugged. “Them I may have had a conversation with. Why does it matter?”
Cupid slumped over. He didn’t seem to be able to form a coherent response. Weird. And now that Nemesis got a good look at the god of Love, he really didn’t look like himself. Nemesis started to feel a bit bad.
“Look, I was just doing my job Cupid. When your mom wants revenge, she sends the best.”
“Why did my mother want revenge on my Psyche? She already got that.”
“This wasn’t revenge on the girl. It was on you. For not doing as you were told.” At the last sentence Cupid seemed to experience several emotions at once. Shock, anger, determination, and a few others Nemesis didn’t really have a name for.
Finally Cupid seemed to find his voice again. “I think I need to have a… conversation with my mother.”
“Need any help?” Nemesis asked eagerly. She’d love to put one over on that goddess.
“No. I want to work on this myself. But would you mind taking care of Psyche’s sisters? They shouldn’t have messed with my wife.”
Nemesis’ answering smile looked more like a grimace than anything. “Consider it done.”
It really isn’t fair for humans caught in the games of gods, Nemesis remarked to herself as Psyche’s second sister followed the first over the edge of the cliff. Nemesis hadn’t even had to do much. She just showed Psyche how to most effectively take revenge on her sisters. They were all to ready believe that Cupid preferred them over Psyche and they both rushed off the cliff. It really wasn’t fair.
Author’s Note: This story is based on the myth of Cupid and Psyche. In the story Psyche is so beautiful that it makes the goddess of beauty, Venus, jealous and she sent her son Cupid to make Psyche fall in love with a horrible person as punishment. Cupid couldn’t bring himself to do it, and he fell in love with her instead. They were married, but Psyche didn’t know who her husband was, and she was never allowed to see his face. Eventually, at her jealous sisters’ urging, Psyche looked at her husband’s face while he was asleep. Once she saw her husband was Cupid, she accidentally spilt hot oil on him and woke him up. When Cupid saw the Psyche had broken the rule, he fled and Psyche wandered to her sisters’ kingdoms. She convinced each one that Cupid preferred them to her because of what she’d done. They each jumped off a cliff, expecting the wind to carry them to Cupid. They both died.
I took the plot from Cupid and Psyche and retold it from the point of view of the goddess of revenge. She wasn’t in the story, but I like to image that she was very involved in the background.
Bibliography: Cupid and Psyche by Apuleius and translated by Tony Kline. Web source.
Image: Angel of Revenge by Comfreak. Source: Pixabay