From the upcoming novel, Greece Is My Anthi (2023)

From Eléni & M Move to Athens
Part 1 – One Reunion and One Hello
Eléni & M Move to Athens
Photo (DMCA) from Wallpaperuse

A great city, whose image dwells in the memory of man, is the type of some great idea. Rome represents conquest; Faith hovers over the towers of Jerusalem; and Athens embodies the pre-eminent quality of the antique world, Art. Benjamin Disraeli

Cryssarina, my love, I will call you Eléni as soon as we land in Greece. If Goddess Athena named you thus, who am I to decide otherwise?

“M, the love of my life; I told you to feel free to call me Cryssarina even in Athens and throughout Greece. Goddess Athena with all her wisdom will understand that you also love Cryssarina because of the sound that it makes in your head. I love it too, especially when it comes out of your lips. And remember that Anthi had said that it had Greek roots as well. Feel free, my king, to call me as you wish.”

O, my queen, I am but the prick whom you love. Even one of my loyal readers thinks as much when she highlights every such instance in the stories that I write. A king I am not and never want to be. I am but a lost writer trying to find the right words in a world that still believes in magic. What about Goddess Athena? some of you will surely ask. Goddess Athena has been awakened from her endless slumber by Patrick, another prick, whom the same reader also highlights, by Jove; I mean, by Zeus.

“Come on, my M! You know it is not true. You have a prick but you are not defined by it. Oh, M! We are very close to Athens. I can feel Athena in my mind. She is smiling and happy. She will meet us tonight. I already called Anthi before we left. She will meet us at the airport. Rigópoula is living on the island now, so we will see her later. I am so excited, M. You will be too. I promise, my love.”

How can I not be? You are with me and I am going to meet two goddesses. One from Ancient Greece and one from Modern Athens. And Patrick, I suppose, will be there too. Whoop-de-doo! I am kidding, of course. He may have awakened a goddess, but mine has four syllables in her name, one for every season.

“You are being silly again. I love it when you are. The plane has begun its descent.”

Save me, Cryssarina! Is that a roach over there near the washroom sign?

“Stop it, M! The plane has to land before we could see one, and it is still daylight, so they are all still in Hades, waiting for nightfall, my love. And Athena promised to keep most of them away as she does for Patrick.”

It only takes one, Cryssarina, just one flying abomination. Is Anthi bringing Aphrodite, Rigópoula’s falcon? Of course, not! What am I saying? It lives with her on the island. I am already panicking just at the possibility of seeing one roach. I need some cannabis to calm me down. We had to hide it in our luggage, of course. We could have brought it in the carry-on, as it is within chocolate and gummies. No one would have suspected. I cannot believe it is still illegal in most countries. It is God’s plant. How can they criminalise such a gift? It goes to show how hypocritical they are. Even atheists call it, God’s plant. It may be the proof we have been looking for. If there is a God, S/He must be on it perpetually. Perhaps it is the reason why everything that happens is cool with God, even Slavery and the Shoah (Holocaust) among so many other systemic horrors. God must be high all the time. Not ((giggles)) this goddess! It is reprehensible at the least. I almost always thought that even if there was a God, I would not give a dust of a piece of crap. And all those that mention that God works in mysterious ways should shove that reasoning up their asses.

“Calm down, my love! You know that I agree.”

C’est un bordel, cette religion de merde. Quelle farce! (Religion is a shitty mess. What a farce!)

Calme-toi, mon M! Sinon, tu auras le cafard*. Je m’excuse mais c’était trop bon pour laisser passer.” (Calm down, my M! Otherwise, you will have the blues. I apologise but it was too good to pass over. *Cafard also means, roach, in French.)

I love you, Cryssarina.

“I know, my M. I love you too.”

We have landed in Goddess Athena’s sphere of wisdom. I feel excited too and will not let those insects ruin it for us even if I see them. Of course, it never works, being a phobia. I wonder how Patrick managed during the days before he finally met her. Maybe she was already taking care of them for him without him noticing it. I love her too, you know, my Cryssarina, but in a different way, of course.

“We all love her, my M. It is impossible not to. She emanates love from her entire being. Zeus really created someone unparalleled. Here is to you, Zeus!”

To think that I cannot consider myself an atheist any longer. I believe in Athena, and Zeus, and all the other gods and goddesses by extension. I still dislike the word, believe. It is a fact, not a belief. I am also excited to meet Anthi, the flowers of Athens.

“You will very soon. I missed her but I always felt her given our interconnection with Goddess Athena from the moment that we met her.”

Do you think that I will be interconnected too after I meet Her?

“I have no doubt about it. She loves you too, you know. She loves anyone who is connected to Patrick. She is a real goddess, after all.”

I felt my wooden heart cracking when we landed in Athens, but not from fear, although a flying roach would have changed all that in a second. I felt elated. I was going to meet Anthi, first of all. Will she look like Greek flowers, all blue and white like Greece and its flag? And later, I was going to meet Goddess Athena; the Goddess of Wisdom, no less. I was hoping for the best in terms of being able to take it all in after everything that I had read, heard and saw in the photographs that Cryssarina had showed me. Patrick found his happiness, I found mine, and now we were going to connect all the dots.

We passed through customs like a cool breeze with our COVID vaccination stamps attached to our passports, picked our many bags with the help of a masked porter, and headed to the exit. I saw Cryssarina’s eyes light up when she saw Anthi, but I had already noticed her a few seconds before, surprised by sudden strong palpitations at seeing her gracefulness as she advanced towards us. Cryssarina hugged and kissed her and then introduced me as her M. Our eyes already met when they were kissing each other, and it seemed as if we had known each other since some immaterial time. Anthi was even more beautiful than her photograph had shown, emanating light as if she was a little sun. I kissed her on both cheeks, lingering on the right one as was apparently the custom, but then suddenly hugged her, as if controlled by some external force. She did not seem surprised, hugging me back. It was as if we were meeting again after a long time apart.

I actually felt this scene of our first meeting deeply while writing it, surprised that it brought me many tears. I must like Anthi more than I thought. Having her as a character in numerous stories and reading almost everything that she has written on Medium must have left an indelible mark on my being. I wonder if it happens often. I stopped writing to collect myself and speculate about the meaning of this outburst of feeling. I am writing fiction as if I was describing a real event. I am sure that Anthi may have an explanation, although I remain perplexed and unsure on how to proceed. I even changed the subtitle to reflect only one reunion instead of the two that were planned, leaving the one with Goddess Athena for the following part.

“Do you see, M? Goddess Athena has already connected you to us. I feel you feeling Anthi.”

I do, Cryssarina. I feel love towards her. Is that what you expected, my love?

“Yes, my M. Anthi will concur.”

Yes, I feel it too. You are now part of us, Anthi replied.

I did not know what to think at that point. We had to take two large taxis given all our luggage, Cryssarina and Anthi taking one and I taking the other, as we began our new life in Modern Greece not too far from the Ancient one, which was now being overseen by Goddess Athena, although she kept herself unseen to most Athenians, all of Greece, and all the rest of humanity.

I would like to thank Anthi Psomiadou for her continued kindness and support. Patrick has Goddess Athena for his wooden heart; I have Cryssarina, but she does not possess any powers except for her love. It is, however, the most powerful one. Love long and repeat as much as you can!

Eléni & M Move to Athens has 37 parts and is the second chapter of the novel, Greece Is My Anthi.