Characters:

ANDROMEDA, princess of Ethiopia and daughter of Cepheus

PERSEUS, son of Zeus

[The scene is rather peaceful considering what recently transpired. The great boulder is surrounded by an unusually serene sea. The light of the sun glares brightly while the song of the seagulls plays softly in the distance. The only evidence of the battle is the spots of red on the maiden's hand and the pool of blood at her feet.]

[ANDROMEDA, though the princess of Ethiopia, lacks the natural charm and grace associated with women of that stock. She is the outgoing, and brutally honest sort who chafes against the corset of society. What she lacks in manners, however she makes up for in beauty. She holds herself like an Amazonian warrior, beautiful and powerful. The fire of her ferocity has scorched many a suitor, leaving her practically unmarriageable in Ethiopian society. PERSEUS, legendary son of Zeus, holds himself as such with grace and power in spades. He finds himself bored with women with small lives and small worries, unable to find anyone to truly spark his interest, until he found himself beguiled by the tale of Princess Andromeda unjustly trapped on the rock, willing to give her life for her people. He has just landed on the rock and is shocked to find the princess ANDROMEDA is not in need of rescuing.]

PERSEUS:

You…you killed it.

ANDROMEDA:

[wipes knife off on her tunic and chuckles] Indeed.

PERSEUS:

But how? You were bound in ropes that would cause trouble for Hercules himself. What miracle is this?

ANDROMEDA:

[walks over to Perseus and smiles] Come sit stranger and I will tell you how I, Andromeda, slayed the sea monster, Cetus.

[ANDROMEDA and PERSEUS sit on the end of the boulder opposite the pool of blood.]

Now, where to begin? Ah, I know. [takes deep breath] So my stupid mother decided it was a good idea to announce to the world that her beauty surpassed that of the Nereids, you know those sea nymphs so in favor with the wielder of the trident. Well, in retaliation, Poseidon thought it was a fitting punishment to set a monster upon my country. My father was out of his mind in panic. Hundreds of our people were being wounded or killed each day. So, he consulted the wise Oracle of Annon who announced that [imitates the voice of the oracle, deep and booming] no relief shall come to Ethiopia until your daughter, Princess Andromeda, is exposed to the monster. [chuckles bitterly]

PERSEUS:

You must have been quite frightened.

ANDROMEDA:

[nods] Yes and angry. I was not about to die for my mother's moment of indiscretion! I was not about to submit to my fate without a fight.

PERSEUS:

What did you do? How was this accomplished?

ANDROMEDA:

I appealed to the more reasonable gods. I prayed constantly in the temples until finally, I got the attention of Aphrodite.

PERSEUS:

The goddess of love? What incentive did she have to intervene?

ANDROMEDA:

She said I was to have a love worthy of legend. That my husband was to be a great hero, a champion of the gods. She told me that a love like mine must conquer all. She convinced her husband Hephaestus, great god of the forge, to make me a knife sharp enough to slice through any substance, be it rope or sea monster. [hands the knife gingerly to PERSEUS, her fingers brush his, causing her to blush and look away] She also asked her lover Ares to bless me in battle.

PERSEUS:

[examining the blade] And so you slayed the sea monster.

ANDROMEDA:

As I said before, indeed. Now, what is your name stranger?

PERSEUS:

I am Perseus, prince of Argos, slayer of Medusa.

ANDROMEDA:

[jaw drops] Of..of Medusa? Ye gods! [softly, dreamily] A great hero.

PERSEUS:

[smiles] I was on my way back to Argos when I heard your tale. I was so moved by your bravery. I felt compelled to save a woman such as you. Apparently, you were no need of it.

ANDROMEDA:

[laughs] Well, perhaps you still can. I could never tell my mother this story. I can't even imagine attempting to explain it to my father. Perseus, I would ask you one favor.

PERSEUS:

[catches her eye, says playfully] Anything for you, Andromeda.

ANDROMEDA:

Please take the credit for this kill. If I go back with this news, I'll be dishonored for fighting the will of the gods. Take the credit and you will truly save me from a fate worse than death.

PERSEUS:

Really, a fate worse than death?

ANDROMEDA:

Don't mock until you've met my mother.

PERSEUS:

[laughs] All right, I will…on one condition.

ANDROMEDA:

[raises eyebrow] Name it.

PERSEUS:

[sets down the knife, then takes her hands] Marry me.

ANDROMEDA:

Perseus!

PERSEUS:
Marry me, oh ruler of men. Make me the happiest man on earth.

ANDROMEDA:

[flustered] Perseus, I am headstrong and disobedient. I found killing this monster today the most exhilarating moment in my life. My only wish is to pursue more moments like it. You would not want me for a wife. I am sure you would tire of me in an instant.

PERSEUS:

[tucks a fly away curl behind her ear and tilts her face toward his] Silly girl, you could not be more wrong. Marry me and I promise we can pursue more moments like these together.

ANDROMEDA:

[smile slowly forming] And you promise not to tell me mother.

PERSEUS:

[smiling] May the gods strike me dead.

ANDROMEDA:

And…and you're sure?

PERSEUS:
[playfully exasperated] Ye gods, yes!

ANDROMEDA:

Then, I will.

[He takes her in his arms and kisses her.]

Τέλος

(The End)