Charon: Thou mortal of utter hubris, you dare stand before me, Charon, deliverer of souls, and demand thou be exempt from my laws? Of what consequence to me is thy passage, or lack thereof? Thy body hath abandoned you, thy life hath fled, and thy relations hath forsaken thee: left without a coin. So tell me, oh great hero of the world, what claim have you to arete? What claim have you to kleos, thou who is so clearly dispensable?
Warrior: Oh My Gods, do we have to have this conversation every time? Your memory isn’t what it used to be, Charon. I’ve been trying to cross this river, since ya know, I got eaten. It’s 2018, and things have changed: Love is love, EmpowHER, and the likes. Oddly enough, walls are making a comeback too, I guess they didn’t learn from Troy. Look, the point is no one gets buried with a coin anymore, just FYI. Have you noticed your lack of business lately? Yeah, that’s because no one believes in you anymore.
Charon: Oh Apollo, a plague upon his tongue: let it utter forth no more lies!
Warrior: Sorry dude, but Apollo has kinda lost his influence in the mortal word.
Charon: Zeus shall strike thee down where you stand for such words!
Charon: Well, then Poseidon shall shatter the earth beneath thy feet!
Warrior: Oh, I’m shaking.
Charon: The Fates shall curse thee!
Warrior: Try again…
Warrior: Look, I’ve got an eternity to keep doing this, but I would really love to get on that boat so can we wrap this up?
Charon: Well then, mortal, if eternity is in your hands, why not sing me your song of fate, and tell my why thou hath no coin for fare. Perchance your tale shall fall upon ears more gracious than mine own.
Warrior: *with sarcasm* I thought thou would never ask.
Warrior: I was among the finest of warriors, chosen by the great Odysseus himself, to sail upon his boat to the battlefields of Troy. Many a brave man fell beside me, but being a beast such as myself, I was not among them. Victory seized, and glory obtained, Odysseus and his men, myself among them, set sail for Ithaka. A short journey such as it was, worry was far from our hearts as we made our way across the great sea.
Yet home is not what the gods intended for us, least for me, the sorry soul that I am, the most wronged of all men, possibly the greatest loss to human kind as we know it-
Charon: Thou seems to have lost their way of mind: does thou mean to speak of Odysseus now?
Charon: If the mightiest and noblest of all men says so, who is a humble undertaker to argue?
Warrior: As I was saying, the God’s intended not that I see my lovely home again, “ ‘the peaked sea-mark of Ithaka under Mount Neion’s wind-blown robe of leaves’ ” (Homer IX, 24-25). Many trials and tribulations, I would say equal to those of our dear departed Harambe, awaited us and detained us from reaching home. Many men had survived the ravages of war, only to fall victim to fates more treacherous than a death in battle. Sadly, I am, was, among these men.
Charon: Thou liest, no warriors of Odysseus could be brought down by ailment of Poseidon’s holy realm, even one so clearly unfit as yourself.
Warrior: I’m not talking about sea sickness, you noob. I’m speaking of the dreaded cyclops, Polyphemus, the bane of all men.
Charon: You presume to speak for all of Zeus’s subjects?
Warrior: Oh, well I’m actually an atheist, so I don’t believe in Zeus anymore.
Charon: Thy thoughts must be lonely, so far between.
Warrior: Excuse me, did you just insult my religion?
Charon: I insult nothing, as I am sure to be only a mirage: a hallucination of a dead and gone man.
Warrior: I don’t understand what you’re saying.
Charon: Continue thy tale of treachery, and concern your lilliputian brain no longer with your fate after death.
Warrior: I will. Thank you very much.
Warrior: So, Odysseus. Everyone thinks he’s so great, so wise, so incredible and flawless; I know better! He led me to my doom, a most brutal one at that! He dragged me to that island, led me into that cave, and there we waited. Upon the Cyclop’s return, Odysseus greeted him boldly and requested xenia. This, obviously, was denied and with that, two of our comrades were killed and eaten. This seems as if it would strike urgency into any man’s heart, but the great and wise Odysseus had no plan of escape.
The next morning, two more of my friends were butchered and eaten, while the rest of us quaked in helpless terror. Now, four men short of our crew, our oh so wonderful leader finally had a plan: all he needed was “ ‘four strong men, and (he) made five as captain’ ” (IX, 64). Of course, I wished to be among these men, but I lost the draw. So I was made to sit useless and hopeless.
Charon: A feat I am sure thee was well versed in and served well.
Warrior: Could you maybe not interrupt me for, like, five seconds?
Charon: The fates have deemed me as incapable as you, I fear.
Warrior: You make no sense. Ok, so by now in the story I’m thinking ‘hey, I might actually survive this!” Lo, I would not be here with you, my friend, if this were true.
Charon: I believe I shall mourn that misfortune more than thee.
Warrior: Yes, it was truly a tragedy, I was in my prime. The Cyclops grabbed me and one other man, and with his mighty and terrible power he bashed our heads against the cave floor, scattering our brains as if they were birthday confetti.
Charon: Hark! I knew thou hadst no brains!
Warrior: Okay, that one I understood.
Charon: A true feat of success for someone whose brain dwells on an island rather than in their head.
Charon: But tell me one more truth, my companion. Wilt thou return to my shores to converse, until thou is allowed onward into the underworld?
Warrior: Well, obvi.
Charon: Oh, wondrous news, warrior of Odysseus! Leave behind this world for eternity, as a coin shall not be required for this single journey.