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  • Writer's pictureHugo Earnshaw-Saran


Updated: Mar 21, 2022

A figure stood upon a Float Pad aboard a spaceship, gleaming in the starlight. He was very tall, and his large oval head cast a long otherworldly shadow. He wore a mysterious coat over a suit with a collar covered with buttons, glistening in different colors.

“Hmmm, let’s see. A deranged dragon destroying the world,” the figure said, examining a satellite image. “He’s stealing our thunder. We can’t let him accomplish our goal before we do.”

The figure raised a green hand with long, spindly fingers.

“Rain havoc from above!” he commanded, and beams of purple light shot out from his fingertips, like lasers.


“Crushing Cars,

Smashing Cities,

Broken Bars and,

Catastrophic Countries,

Sliced Souls,

Bashed Bowls,

All Horrible Things in Total,

Everything so Fatal,” a faint voice sang musically, echoing from somewhere far away.

I woke up with a jolt. It was just a dream.

“Run Henry, run,” The faint voice echoed through my head.

I noticed that the Athens news was on and realized I had fallen asleep in front of the TV.

“A giant monster is raining havoc on the country of Greece,” the news presenter was saying, “We’re hearing reports that some scientists and Ancient Greek scholars think that the monster looks exactly like how Ladon is described in the ancient texts. This is the time to flee Greece!” As he shouted this last part, the glass behind him crashed to pieces on screen.

A monster appeared and roared, highlighting the news camera with fissures. Just before the screen cracked there was a glimpse of the monster’s mouths, its tongues snaking around the news area. He was dribbling blood and green saliva over the shiny and glistening floor.

How is this happening? Is this real, a dream inside another dream, I should pinch myself. I thought. “OW!” I said. That last one hurt. What was going on?!

Not Ladon, AGAIN?!” I shouted in anger. “Don’t trash this awesome city!!!!!!!!!!”

I was furious. I would have taken all of Heracles’s twelve tasks to stop Ladon from destroying Athens.

I rushed to change into my favorite suit. If I was going to fight a dragon, I wanted to look slick doing it.

The cacophony of sounds from the street below were horrifying. It felt like my soul was being ripped out of my body and replaced with someone else’s.

My sword! I need it for protection! I’ve got to go back to the lab! I thought. I ran across my bear fur rug, out the front door, and down the many flights of stairs to the entrance of my apartment building. “Holy Olympus!” I exclaimed. It was scary hearing and seeing the chaos on TV, but it was even scarier in real life.

I ran towards my motorbike. My tie was flying in the hot air. I put my helmet on and drove at full speed. I felt like my gums were zooming off like a jet, but I wanted to get to the lab as quickly as I could so that I wouldn’t get crushed by a gigantic monster while en route.

“YAAAAAAAAH!!!” I screamed as I crashed into the DaVinci Gelato. I got off my bike and rushed towards the kitchen fridge, opened it, spun the forgery clockwise, and returned to the lab.

The motion activated lights followed me as I walked towards the laboratory. It was still in disarray, and the cracked panels of glass winked at me as I got closer.

The lab was so quiet and peaceful that if you hadn’t seen the news, you might not know that a hundred-headed dragon was terrorizing the city directly above it. That’s weird, I thought, especially since the lab was the reason Ladon was here and on the loose.

Not to mention that everybody in the lab had made a pretty big deal about keeping the fact that Greek mythology is really a secret outside of the lab. The other scientists had to make an oath on the River Styx, which would mean that their energy and souls would have been devoured if they broke it. But the problem was, now everybody who saw the news knew the truth.

I saw a group of them on the far side of the main room.

“I guess plan A didn’t work, so let’s try Plan B,” Cecrops was saying to the other scientists. I could tell from his body language that he was frustrated. His lab coat, a brilliant clean white just the day before, now it was worn with holes in it from the disaster.

“Hi Cecrops!” I shouted from across the room, “You’ve seen the news, right?! And what’s Plan B?”

“Oh, welcome back, Dr Philippoussis,” Cecrops said with a stony face. ”We have been expecting you. You are late.” He paused. “Plan A was to capture and heal Ladon, then send him back to his tree. The healing worked. But we didn’t anticipate that he would escape.”

“Right. So what’s Plan B then?”

Cecrops stared at me intently like a panther considering its prey.

“You do not have clearance for Plan B. It is more… otherworldly than plan A,” he said curtly.

I was confused. Why would Cecrops bring me into this project and then only give me access to part of it? Was he hiding something crazy like a plot to take over the world? If so, why would somebody like him create a lab only to bring it to the ashes of destruction?

My head was a collage of questions. But I could only ask one of them.

“What do I have to do to get clearance?”

“There’s nothing you can do to get clearance. You just don’t qualify for it,” Cecrops said. He turned back towards the other scientists.

Feeling frustrated, my blood was boiling and I had to project my rage on something. I looked at my sword, which was strapped to my desk, but instead picked up a screwdriver and smashed it with my bare hands.

I then stormed towards the conference table and karate chopped it with my hand. There was silence as nothing happened at first, and then cracks made a trail across the tabletop, until the table broke in two.

“I was worried for a few seconds there that my super strength had worn off!” I exclaimed in delight. Cecrops and the scientists didn’t seem to share my enthusiasm and made a point of ignoring me.

I noticed blue papers on the floor and saw a 3D architectural design of what looked like the figure from my dream. I pinched myself. My dream was REAL.

Crushing Cars,

Smashing Cities,

Broken Bars and,

Catastrophic Countries,

Sliced Souls,

Bashed Bowls,

All Horrible Things in Total,

Everything so Fatal, I recalled.

Otherworldly? Hmmmm, something isn’t right here… I thought, then I realized that I was staring at Plan B. I shifted my eyes and was relieved that nobody was watching me. They were looking at their desktop computer screens, pretending I wasn’t there.

I noticed everybody had stickers covering their computer logos, except for one scientist - Cecrops. The logo on his said:


“That’s unusual,” I mumbled quietly.

If you, reader, don’t know who Cronus is, he’s the evil Titan of time who ate all his children but Zeus. Zeus then took all his siblings out of Cronus’ stomach and the gods arranged a war against the Titans. The Titans lost and the gods put Cronus into the giant hole of Tartarus, which was an endless pit in the Underworld.

Did this mean Cronus was back and running a tech business? How did he get out? Did he do an MBA degree? I didn’t have the answers, but some pieces of the puzzle were coming together.

I didn’t have clearance for plan B because the plan was secret. It was Plan Benevolent.

I needed answers. And I needed privacy while looking for them. Everyone may have been pretending I was invisible, hoping I would go away, but as I wasn’t actually invisible they would have noticed me snooping around. I looked at the whiteboard, which said that no sessions were scheduled at the lab from 9:00 PM to 8:00 AM that night. I could come back then.

“Hey Cecrops, can I go check that my house hasn’t been turned to ash?” I asked.

“Ta ta,” the rude centaur said.

I left the lab, got on my bike, and raced back to my apartment.


Back in my apartment, I started making a plan to infiltrate the lab and access the secret files of CRONUS CORP.

At 9:45pm, I dressed in black clothes so I could blend in with the dark night and went to my bike. I had modified the bike with silent and hover mode extensions, and activated both. Better to be stealthy when there was a monster crushing buildings. Plus, I couldn’t be certain that Cecrops wasn’t having me followed.

A green light beamed from the wheels, and I fired up the boosters. I hadn’t used these extra functions and couldn’t help but let out a “Wooo hooo!” in excitement when the bike started to hover. I flew out of the parking lot, my map marker on my electronic helmet visor aimed at the DaVinci Gelato.

The ice cream store was closed, and dark inside when I arrived. The lab was empty. Everyone had gone home, just as I had hoped.

The lab was filled with computers, so I picked one at random. I noticed the name of the computer username was Denis Zeus J. Zeus? To my surprise, it wasn’t password protected. The home screen was a photo of a lightning bolt and there was a file on the desktop titled: “Don’t share with Dr. H Philippoussis”.

Obviously, I clicked and opened it.

The first document read:

“Cronus Corp was created by Cronus to take over the world with creatures from his age: The Mythological age. This means that he also means to bring creatures from other Mythological periods to his empire of monsters. To find him he is in his office in the lab.

He is in his mortal old form. Beware of his powers, he kept them when he was in

Tartarus. His times in the lab include:

9:50 AM-7:25 PM.

He has rounded: A Sphinx, A army of Cyclops, A few Titans, and is trying to add Ladon and a few Hydras and Harpies to this list.”

This was what they were hiding. But there were more files, more documents, titled ‘Don’t click this Henry’, ‘This isn’t for Henry’,’ This is private Henry’, ‘Find a different file Henry’, ‘These are secrets Henry’, ‘No Henry’ etc. Whoever was naming these files needed a lesson in subtlety. I had the computer send everything to my laptop, then deleted the evidence. This was getting interesting.


I checked my watch. People would be coming back soon. I had to get out of there! I shot into the sky on my bike. The sun had come up by the time I got back to my apartment.

I settled into my lounge chair and started to read through the files on my laptop. One of the documents said: “Find out more in Cecrops’ office/study.” This was interesting but it meant I had to do another secret mission to find more in Cecrops’ study. I was exhausted. I’d better set an alarm… I thought.

I went to bed and slept for 14 hours, waiting for the next infiltration.

I woke up when the alarm rang and got in the same clothes as the night before. This was becoming a bit of a routine! But this time I was aiming for Cecrops’ study. I was trying to be like a ninja this time, watching out for security cameras, avoiding fingerprints by wearing gloves, leather boots, a cool black coat, and a mask. I was paranoid that there would be something creepy or evil inside, but I knew that if I found something, it would be good information.

I swiftly moved toward the study, opened the door (which should have been locked - they really needed to beef up their security!) and was greeted by some horrible wall drawings. The first one was of Cecrops praying at a powerful entity (probably Cronus). The next was of the powerful entity behind a few burning buildings on an Earth-like globe. The text above it read: “MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA”.

I saw his computer was open and I sent myself all of his files. After I was done, I noticed the seismometer in his study was buzzing; a level 10.0 supernatural substance was causing shifts in the ground. I ran out of the room and grabbed my sword to fight whatever was disturbing the Earth. There was clearly something more serious going on, and I needed to help protect the city and its people.

I noticed that there was a screen which showed an Unidentified Flying Object in the sky. It was flying down to Earth, Greece and in front of Athens tower was the estimated location they would land at.

This was plan B. Bad on Cronus Corp for keeping plan B not so much of a secret, just a random piece of paper on a meeting table. I rushed to the exit of the lab, which was also the entrance of the apocalypse.

I saw bright green lights flashing across the blue sky; lasers blasting cars to pieces; cracking buildings and a landing object which looked like the saucer in the lab video screen. I remembered the poem:

“Crushing Cars,

Smashing Cities,

Broken Bars and,

Catastrophic Countries,

Sliced Souls,

Bashed Bowls,

All Horrible Things in Total,

Everything so Fatal…”

I thought about the poem as the UFO started getting closer to the building. I drew my sword and watched the UFO land with unfolding steel stairs. The character from my dream floated down to the ground.

“We are Plan B, humans!” the alien said, proving that even the lab’s accomplices were hopeless at keeping a secret. He pointed his finger at the gas station, which got blown up by a beamed laser. “We have come to abduct a creature with our goal and we will dominate Earth as well. You will submit to our demands!”

“Woo hoo!” A small voice cheered from atop Athens Tower. The alien, confused, tried blasting in the direction of the voice.

“What’s wrong with your code, Zalrucald? I created you. I gave instructions on how to create you, and you do that to me?” A distinct, familiar voice echoed from the same location. It was Cecrops!


Other aliens that looked like smaller versions of Zalrucald were holding rifles that looked like they were straight out of a science fiction movie. I was frightened by their weapons so I ran into Athens tower.

Lights dotted the ceiling of the entrance, and two people with black suits and ties and cool shades walked towards me to check if I was allowed in. They quickly morphed into octopus-headed creatures that wore the same outfit except for the shades. Their fingers were long and bendy, which they used to try and grab me. When they got hold of me I slashed the sword in a circle around me, which sliced both of them in half.

I looked at the bottom of their chins and saw a message if you put both of them together.

I moved them next to each other and they quickly became a long piece of paper.

It read:

“Read this and be ready to forget...”

I stopped reading because I didn’t want to have my mind wiped. I walked to the next level and watched a battle ensue.

It was like a game of cat and mouse! The aliens were cats and Ladon was the mouse. Lasers were whizzing like a billion fireflies in the sky. It looked beautiful, but scary - really scary.

Ladon was slashing everywhere to defend himself against all of the aliens shooting at him. They were wearing jetpacks, floating around his heads like flies. Lasers were flying in every direction; Ladon’s tail was whipping back and forth and he was roaring like a lion. This great mythological creature needed help.

Gripping my sword, I ran towards him.

Amidst the chaos, I saw the alien general’s laser blasting into Ladon’s heart. Ladon fell, and the alien troops danced around him, assuming he was dead. It was like a population of dancing soldiers, but I saw a small huff and puff from one of Ladon’s heads, which told me that the dancers were not safe.

With giant effort, Ladon shook off his enemies and blew them with his hundred fire breaths, and whips of his large tail. The scene was dotted with fallen dead soldiers, except for one, the General Zalrucald.

The General cast his eyes over the grave site, and said a final shout:

“I guess you’re dead,” he said to Ladon before getting swallowed by the large beast. There was a red flicker in Ladon’s throat, so I hurried over and shouted, “Spit him out!!”.

Amazingly, he understood me. Ladon coughed up a thin device with the same flicker just in time before a timer ran out and exploded.

Cronus Corp knew the General would be eaten, so they had planted a bomb with him to take Ladon down internally!

A hand grabbed my arm furiously. I turned and saw Cecrops with a red face. I looked the other way at Ladon, who was still lively and standing.

“WHY DID YOU DO THAT!?” The red-faced half-man half-beast roared. I played it cool like I didn’t know anything about secret files of Cronus Corp and said, “I thought we were supposed to keep the specimen to bring back to his tree, so he needs to be alive for the idea of the plan to work.”

Cecrops went deadly silent. He walked back to Athens Tower, leaving me alone.



I jogged to the lab in my ripped jeans, grey hoodie, and Pro-lympus hat (a brand of outfits made in Greece). The city was peaceful again; there wasn’t a fire or a dragon with a hundred heads flying around, but I hadn’t completed my mission. I still needed to find out everything about Cronus Corp and if all I had read from that first computer was real.

I checked into the DaVinci Gelato and entered the lab once again.

I had arrived at the lab early hoping it would be empty. But I heard voices. I edged closer towards them. It sounded like they were coming out of a side room that I hadn’t noticed before. I heard Cecrops and a mysterious voice talking, and peeked through the window.

“I’m sorry the mission failed sir, but we need to fire that smart brat from the place! I told him he couldn’t access plan B, so he won’t expect anything other than not having clearance for the plan,” Cecrops was saying.

“Then get him to catch a hydra and it’ll eat him to pieces,” the mysterious voice said. He was in a chair facing the other way, so I couldn’t see who was speaking, but he sounded evil. And powerful. ”Do that and your dream will come true. Henry, gone. Sound good?” the voice added softly.

I was in danger. But who was it that was working against me?

The chair spun around. It was Cronus.

To be continued…

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