One day, a baby girl Minerva was found under an olive tree by a flower shop owner, who decided to have her adopted out of sympathy. She had grown into a beautiful young woman with the care of her foster father. This day, Minerva took responsibility for delivering bouquets to the temple as her foster father was sick.
The vivid bouquets on the wooden cart reminded her of a man who sent her flowers before. Although this man had long gone, she still dreamed of him sometimes.
“Nonono, I truly wish that Atlantis would find his best love...how could I still think of him?”
Carelessly, Minerva’s cart hit a priest holding a golden plate, which dropped immediately and made a huge noise that caught everyone’s attention in the temple, including Athena who just arrived.
The priests apologized to Athena in no time while Minerva held her gaze with a nervous look.
“Ah!” When their gazes met each other, Minerva sensed her blood boiling inside; Athena was also stunned. At the moment, Minerva approached Athena as if her body was somehow drawn by her without control.
“My power resonates with yours…” Confused, Athena gazed at Minerva coming in the way. “Who are you exactly?”
Deep down in her heart, a voice told Athena not to approach her, but she refused to listen to the advice and reached out her hand. When Minerva’s fingertip touched Athena’s, a surge of heartbroken sorrow and hatred was back once again.
The grass under olive trees, aroma of essential oils, scratches on design drawings...and that azure silhouette and smiles all flashed back in Athena’s mind. The memories were so vivid that she desperately called out a name that Minerva was familiar with all of a sudden, “Atlantis…”
The strong and tough image of Athena that she had always been bearing now became full of heart-aching sorrow. Instead of Minerva, her gaze was fixed into the farther distance. “Why did you make me remember the person that broke my heart…” The goddess spoke in a hoarse voice.
Stunned, Minerva finally understood all those dreams in the past, those phantasmagorias were real memories that belonged to Athena. Minerva herself was an incarnation of Athena’s tears, and she was a part of her.
“So Atlantis once said that he fell in love with someone. That must be…” Sorting out her own thoughts, Minerva removed a preserved flower hairpin from her head, which was made by the bouquet of Altlantis. She wanted to tell Athena that he had been missing her so much all along. Just as Minerva tried to speak, a bolt of lightning struck down, immobilizing Minerva as if she was lassoed and keeping her mouth shut.
“Father!” Looking at the sky, Athena saw Zeus descending.
“Athena, have you forgotten how stupid you were on that day? Do you want to let this trivial thing mess with your mind again?” Zeus spoke solemnly.
Athena then recalled what Atlantis said to her cruelly with no leeway. Back then, that man let go of everything to leave at ease. Despite Athena’s every effort to repair the relationship, he was the one who gave up. And she did not want to go through that deep-seated pain again.
“Father, you’re right. Victory is all I need, not that meaningless love. Someone get her out of here.” Athena replied coldly.
The priests grabbed Minerva’s arms roughly and dragged her out immediately.
“No, I must let Athena know!” Gritting her teeth, Minerva became agitated with her fists clenched. All of a sudden, a burst of power was triggered from her body to push the priests away. As the lightning lasso was removed, she sprinted to stop Athena from leaving.
Zeus slowly raised his hand to circulate elements, “you’re not supposed to exist.”
Lightning gathered on his palm and shot; the bolt blasted Minerva to lose her balance and tumble.
“Please believe in love. I…” Minerva twitched her lips, trying to utter the last few words with her last breath. Soon, her eyes began to lose focus, eventually vanishing into thin air. Witnessing the disappearance of Minerva, Athena slightly raised her eyebrow but remained calm to accept it.
“My daughter, the Goddess of war and harvest, glory is what you truly deserve.” Zeus reiterated the meaning of Athena’s existence.
“Right, father.” When Athena and Zeus left, they were unaware that Minerva had condensed into a faint light blending into Athena’s body.
“I saw the way Atlantis looked when he thought about you. It carried a boundless weight of love.”
That was what Minerva was trying to tell Athena before she vanished. And her longing somehow affected the fate of Athena and Atlantis...