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“Hello birdies, hello flowers, hello Hades..err..argggh”
“I wish I was totally dead”
“Darker shades of black..lovely”
Persephone was the pale faced goddess of the underworld in the black dress and smudged mascara. She lived five months of every year in the abode of her husband Hades, God of the Underworld and the rest of the time back in the sunshine to house sit for her mother Demeter when the latter went touring agricultural shows  in Ancient Greece. Because of her association with death and all matters black, Persephone has become something of a poster goddess for all young women when they changing from Justin Bieber fans into something much darker like Taylor Swift. The resultant 'black moods' can be put down to Persephone's continued influence.
edit Family and Marriage
Persephone was originally called Kore,Core or Corrrrrr! What a looker!!!. She was the hippy daughter of Demeter and her brother Zeus. As Kore, Persephone grew into in a flowery-powery princess who liked nothing more than running barefoot amongst the grass and plants of Earth with her coterie of nimble nymphs and beefy bodyguards. Persephone liked to sing and her voice carried all the way down to the bowels of the Earth and into the palace of Hades. Though he was given a few crones and monsters to amuse him, Hades had no women to share his black silk, Olympian sized bed or his iffy sexual preferences.
Hades secretly left his realm and travelled up to Mount Olympus to warn Zeus he was to abduct a wife for himself. In particular he said he liked Persephone but expected a refusal if he asked her directly. Hades intended to abduct Persephone anyway but thought he should clear this with Zeus first. Otherwise he would close the gates of hell and tell everyone that the world of the dead was full up and the spirits had to stay on Earth to wander around and wail,.
Zeus thought this a terrible idea but was worried Hades would carry out his threat. So the almighty, all-seeing Zeus agreed to 'look the other way' whilst his brother went ahead and abducted Persephone. To get his daughter/niece away from her companions, Zeus also left a bouquet of flowers with a message 'from an admirer' in a field which Persephone picked up to read and sniff. The earth opened up and out rode Hades on his black limo chariot to scoop up Persephone and carry her away from sunlight and into the darkness. Her friends heard her scream but they saw nothing else.
edit In Hell
Miserable and not understanding what happened, Persephone shut herself up in designated room and refused to talk or eat. Hades tried to make jokes and tell 'how good they looked together' but Persephone sank into a deep gloom. Hades said they 'were married' and he had conjugal rights. Persephone said nothing and started to waste away.
Back on top, Persephone's mother Demeter eventually discovered what happened and that Zeus had done nothing to intervene so she cursed the Earth and would let nothing grow. The world faced famine and new recruits to Hades's domain. Eventually Zeus sent Hermes to see Hades if Persephone could be returned and that perhaps Hades could marry another nymph. This made Hades angry and he cursed his 'kid brother' for back tracking. Apparently there was some rule that if you tasted any food grown in Hades (hard to believe that any was), you were stuck there forever. And apparently, Persephone had drunk a pomegranate smoothie so she was staying.
Hades hoped to hang on to Persephone but the bright eyed maiden he had once seen was now a bleary eyed, hollow cheeked and emaciated. Her clothes were dirty and her hair matted. Hades didn't tell Zeus this but said he would do a 60-40 deal with his brother. Persephone could return back for seven months but had to return pronto in time for the Autumn and Winter. Demeter tried to resist this but got out voted by the other Olympians who were concerned that they playground was becoming a desert. Persephone returned home.
Demeter was naturally very happy to see her daughter but was shocked she looked so bad. She tried to prevent Persephone returning to Hades but Zeus said he 'had spoken' and that was the end of it. It may have been a forced marriage but that Persephone would 'grow to like the place'. She never did but then hell was supposed to be a punishment and not a pleasure dome.
Once back on Earth, Persephone or 'Kore' as he preferred tried to get back her old life but knowing that she had to return to Hades always made this very difficult. If you called her 'Persephone' on Earth she would cut you dead in conversation and curse your crops (being Demeter's daughter meant she had influence over agriculture too) or perhaps go for something even more terrible. She became in effect two different persons, a bi-polar goddess and neither of them were that friendly. The old Kore had gone.
Sometimes Persephone/Kore would get confused where she was and would slip out to nightclubs. She became a 'proto' Goth girl in black boots and leggings. Those who didn't recognise her and tried it on (sexually) would receive punishment. 11.30 Sharp, round at her place but only the very brave (or foolish) would do that as none ever came back alive. People whispered she had turned them into bats, forever condemning them to the twilight world and hanging upside down in caves.
Persephone had no children by Hades and the couple kept separate bedrooms. It makes one wonder if Hades had been a lot better off just with keeping a nymph after all the trouble he had. His brother Poseidon had the right idea when he married a sea nymph - though like all the brothers, being legally tied never stopped them having affairs and relationships elsewhere.
The hellish couple did receive a few visitors. Heracles dropped by to borrow their dog Cerberus for one of his tasks. He was also allowed to free another Greek hero Theseus who had come to hell with his mate Pirithous to seduce to take away Persephone. Hades found out and had them both condemned to fiery punishment but Theseus was let off with a technicality, he was only an accessory and wasn't dead. (Pirithous got to stay indefinitely). Another visitor was the poet Orpheus who wanted to bring his dead wife Eurydice back to Earth. Hades said 'no deal' but Persephone persuaded him to listen to the lyre plucker and so Orpheus got his wish. That myth still went tits up for Orpheus and Eurydice but that wasn't Persephone's fault.
Persephone's life was improved when she got to keep her own lover and safe from the jealousies of Hades. He was Adonis. Once described as the most beautiful man in the world, he had been the mortal lover of Aphrodite until he was killed when a stunt with a wild boar went wrong. Aphrodite hoped to bring back her dead boyfriend to life but by the time she got Zeus's permission to reverse his death, Adonis's spirit was already sleeping with Persephone who had bagged him once he had descended into Tartarus. When Zeus told Persephone (via Hermes ) to let Adonis go, Persephone refused. Aphrodite then threatened a 'love strike' - no one was going to get any nookie anywhere, anytime. And this would effect mortals and immortals alike. Zeus persuaded Persephone to go Dutch with Aphrodite for the amours of Adonis. He would spend six months 'upstairs' with Aphrodite and six months 'downstairs' with Persephone. The Goddesses agreed. Adonis became a shared, non-stop love machine.
- ↑ Involving Asparagus, mainly.
- ↑ Sister shagging quite common and unremarked then.
- ↑ . The elder brother of Zeus, he had drawn the 'short straw' and had got the abode of the dead as his realm.
- ↑ Or head back to Mexico.
- ↑ French actress Eva Green would be perfect casting
- ↑ The eternal errand boy.
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