A Cloud Formed in the Image of a Woman

The wheel seems like it gets heavier every time it spins around.

“I don’t care!” Ixion yells, up at the top. “It was worth it!” That’s always good for a little extra speed. Over the course of eternity, it’s the little variations that make everything endurable. Even if it’s a brief flash of extra pain, a sudden burning as his legs threaten to pop out of their sockets, at least it’s something.

Sometimes people come by and speak to him. The conversations tend to be a little one-sided.

“You must… with the… Lapiths… son of… clouds… forever…” and he just laughs and whoops at them, because really, what does he care? None of them are ever impressed enough with his suffering to try and take him down. At least whatsisname had the big lummox with the crown of flowers rip his ass half off, pulling him off the bench. But then he was crying, wasn’t he?

And the others, the famous ones, the audacious, they’ve wormed their way up out of the gloom, words and images in dozens of countries and tongues, boulders and branches heavy with fruit, sweat of his brow, drought of his tongue, but not him. Thousands of years later and what does he have to show for it? A sparky horse in some Japanese puppet show.

“I don’t care!” he yells again, and his voice echoes out over the fields of asphodel. “It was worth it!”