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OOC Information:
Name: EJ

IC Information:
Name: Hermes
Fandom: Greek Mythology
Timeline: end of the Iliad
Age: 800 (Hermes actual age is pretty relative, but he’s still one of the ‘younger’ deities.)
Appearance: Hermes is a youthful boy, (canonly between 12 and 18) with a golden appearance. His hair is curled and blonde, usually a mop of tussled locks of hair. His skin is tanned, and smooth (he’s not a very hairy boy), and his eyes are a bright blue. Upon his arrival at the Facility, too, he will be wearing nothing but a youth’s toga and his winged sandals (as he is described most often as wearing.)

Hermes also looks about the age 17/18 while in Facility, usually. He does have the ability to affect his appearance, and while in F1 can change it for short periods of time. In mythology his age-wise appearance is most often between that of a 12 to 14 year old boy (Homer, Odyssey 10. 135 ff (trans. Shewring) (Greek epic C8th B.C.) : "I was met by golden-wanded Hermes; he seemed a youth in the lovely spring of life, with the first down upon his lip." ) and that of a young adult (http://www.theoi.com/Gallery/K11.11.html .) The most important thing is that Hermes appears to be the youngest of the Greek gods (Suidas s.v. Hermes (trans. Suda On Line) (Byzantine Greek lexicon C10th A.D.) : "They create [images of] him [Hermes] as the youngest of all [the gods].") despite actually being older than several. He is very rarely described in an adult manner, despite having fathered his own children. (Apuleius, The Golden Ass 10. 30 ff (trans. Walsh) (Roman novel C2nd A.D.) : "[From a description of an ancient Greek play depicting the Judgement of Paris :] A radiant boy appeared, naked except for a youth’s cloak draped over his left shoulder; his blonde hair made him the cynosure of all eyes...")

Given the chance, however, he will likely begin to dress like the others in the Facility not long after his arrival. If only because he steals some of their clothing.

Abilities: First off, let it be said that while he will have a golden sword and his caduceus, Hermes is not a fighter. In fact, in every myth that involves fighting...he's either hidden from the opponent, put his sword down, or put them to sleep before killing them. If he does become involved in a fight, he's more likely to wheel and deal his way out of things, than to physically fight someone. Secondly, he can fly...but only when wearing his wing sandals; which he does love entirely too much.

Hermes is Greco-Roman deity of: Animal husbandry, heralds, trade and Merchants, thieves and trickery, language and wiles, roads, hospitality, feast and banquets, protector of home, guards dogs, guide of the dead, sleep, birds of omen, dreams of omen, rustic divination, gymnasiums, games, rustic music, animal fables, and astronomy.

For the purpose of Facility, however, I will be limiting his godly abilities to a few of these, and gifts he was started as having in mythology. Everything he can do, of course, is subject to mun permission, and cannot be forced on a character against a mun’s will. Despite what the muse might wish, sometimes. Everything in F1 is a one in four chance. Everything in F3 requires mun permission. He has active abilities, which can affect people, and inactive abilities, which cannot affect others but instead helps him.

Active Ablities:

The ability to turn people into stone: ( http://www.theoi.com/Olympios/HermesWrath.html ) Hermes can turn people into stone, when they really push him. However, for RP’s sake, while in F1 he will be limited to only being able to turn them to stone for a day, with a one in four chance of succeeding. A four-sided die will be rolled if a mun agrees to trying, 1= Stone, 2= partially turned (like…an arm or whatever), 3= barely touched (like a finger nail), 4= no affect. For F3, the affect must be agreed to by the muns, and cannot last for more than 24 hours.

The ability to people into animals: ( http://www.theoi.com/Olympios/HermesWrath.html ) Much like the stone, Hermes is known to turn people into animals as punishment. However, with this one, there will be a one in four chance of success. Meaning that 1= turned into an animal, 2,3, or 4 =Failed attempt. In F1, that is. For F3, the affect must be agreed to by the muns, and cannot last for more than 24 hours.

The ability to calm aggressive individuals: ("When Mercury [Hermes], holding it in his hand, was journeying to Arcadia and saw two snakes with bodies intertwined, apparently fighting, he put down the staff between them. They separated then, and so he said that the staff had been appointed to bring peace. Some, in making caducei, put two snakes intertwined on the rod, because this seemed to Mercury a bringer of peace." - Hyginus, Astronomica 2.7) Hermes is a bringer of peace, and while in F1, will have a 1 in 4 chance of stopping a fight with his will alone. In F3, this will require mun permission, but is certainly more likely to succeed.

The ability to affect ones speech/communication: (Head Canon) As the god of language and communication, Hermes can affect a person’s ability to communicate with others. Most commonly in the form of muting them, or making everything they hear gibberish. This has a one if four chance of success while in F1, and requires mun permission in F3.

The ability to put a person to sleep and/or induce dreams of omen: ("[Hermes] grasped in his fist the wand that charms to sleep, put on his magic cap, and thus arrayed ... sprang from his father’s citadel down to earth [to slay the monster Argos Panoptes]. There he removed his cap, laid by his wings; only his wand he kept ... Cyllenius [Hermes] saw all Argus’ eyelids closed [after soothing him with the music of a shepherd's-pipe] and every eye vanquished in sleep. He stopped and with his wand, his magic wand, soothed the tired resting eyes and sealed their slumber." - Ovid, Metamorphoses 1.583 and "A sculptor was selling a white marble statue of Hermes which two men wanted to buy: one of them, whose son had just died, wanted it for the tombstone, while the other was a craftsman who wanted to consecrate the statue to the god himself ... In his sleep, the sculptor saw Hermes himself standing at the Gate of Dreams (Pylai Oneiroi). The god spoke to him and said, 'Well, my fate hangs in the balance: it is up to you whether I will become a dead man or a god!" - Aesop, Fables 563 (from Babrius, Fabulae 30) With this in mind, while in possession of his Caduceus, he can put people to sleep and affect their dreams in order to get his way. For the most part this will only happen if permission is given, and has the same chances as anything else in F1.

Inactive

Trickery and thievery: (Head Canon) Hermes IS a trickster and a God of thieves. By that right alone, he is a master thief. There is hardly anything he cannot make off with, and most of what he can’t steal is because he promised and more took an oath saying he’d leave it be. That being said, anything he does steal requires mun permission. Also, it is important to note that stealing from Hermes is not only next to impossible, but inviting his full attention upon your muse. Steal from him at your own risk.

As a master at trickery, as well, he has the ability to change his appearance and his age with a whim. While in F1, he can only maintain these changes for a limited amount of time. His typical form, that he eventually must revert to, will be that of an 17/18 year old youth with blond hair. In F3, he will be able to maintain the change as long as he wishes.

Speed: (Head/Myth) Hermes is considered one of the fastest deities in the Greco-Roman pantheon. He’s described as being faster than a thought. In F1 he’ll be limited to one quarter of his normal speed.

Language: (Head Canon) The ability to learn languages with fair ease. This is an innate ability.

Invention: (Head Canon) Hermes is able to create new things, and learn to how to use them and apply them.

The ability to see and speak to the dead: (“So did these ghosts travel on together squeaking, while easeful Hermes led them down through the ways of dankness. They passed the streams of Okeanos, the White Rock, the Gates of the Sun and the Land of Dreams, and soon they came to the field of asphodel, where the souls, the phantoms of the dead have their habitation.” - Homer, Odyssey) Hermes is the guide of the dead, and in that case can see and speak with the souls of the departed. This is an innate gift, and not something he can turn off.

The inability to lie and steal from Apollo: This is covered in the history, but Hermes swore an oath to his brother that stops two things. First off, he swore to never steal from his brother again, or even to go near his house. The little thief was cut off. Secondly, while Hermes is the god of liars, and can easily spot a lie a mile away…he himself is oath bound to not lie. What he can do is withhold information, or dance around it without saying the whole truth, but an outright lie is not possible for him. This means a) people have to pay attention to what he says and b) he cannot renege on a promise. Assuming you can get one out of him to start with.

Personality: Hermes is a trickster God by definition. He's playful and youthful, and particularly mischievous. Throughout his mythology he is shown to grant prayers and blessings in the most unorthodox methods. An arrogant child, he often believes that people should adore him simply because he is one of the 12 seated Olympians. He feels he is privileged (example of this is in how he became on of the 12 seated Olympians, where he stole Apollo's cattle) and does not except to be held responsible for his actions (again, in the case of stealing Apollo's cattle, he was rewarded with what he wanted with very little cost to himself.) He also has a burning desire to be accepted, almost demanding of it.

In a lot of ways Hermes can be childish and child-like in his behavior. That isn't to say that he can't be an adult (he is the representation of wisdom, after all), it is just that among his peers he tends to be very selfish and attention demanding. He likes to be the center of attention, often claiming to be 'Zeus' favorite', though there isn't too much bases in that. He is fond of his siblings, though Apollo and Dionysus are by far his closest siblings. Apollo and he are often found to court the same women, as well as share in day to day events. Dionysus, however, Hermes helped save and raise when the godling was first born. He repeatedly hid the child from Hera, and would later be in Dionysus' company a great deal. And despite his apparent attitude toward Ares, Hermes is also close to his oldest brother in his own way, though most would be hard pressed to see it behind all the teasing he does.

Hermes is also a lover more than a fighter. That being said, he won't engage in a direct fight with anyone or anything. Hermes relies more on is wit and cunning. He will often attack from behind, with quick, deadly blows...or simply bow out of the fight as he did with Leto in the Illiad. He does not feel inclined to give in to people who attempt to goad him into a fight either. Hermes wit and cunning, however, does not come to the forefront of Hermes personality only when confronted with a fight, however. He doesn't like to give answer out right, even if he knows the answer already. He enjoys word play, and double speaking, and trying to get others to trip up in what they are saying. Not that he will lie, if it comes to it. In fact, while he is a patron deity of liars and thieves, Hermes himself is oath bound to not lie.

And among his many quirks, there is the fact that Hermes is a rather tactile individual, as well as affectionate. Mostly this side comes about after he has done something 'wrong' and is of a mind to help smooth over any rough edges that might have resulted. He has no desire to actively hurt people, generally speaking, but that doesn't stop him from being a pain in their butts. ((Re-Cattle stealing))

History: Hermes was born in a whirlwind of events. Zeus, the mighty king of the Olympus spied upon the nymph Maia, and conceived the god. It took but a day for the impatient child to be born into the world, a babe of a single determination- to become one of the twelve seated Gods of Mount Olympus. However there were a few problems that stood in his path. The first was his mother, the quiet, shy nymph Maia. She had spent her whole life avoiding the deathless ones (gods), and had no more interest in them after her son was born than before so. (Homeric Hymn 18 to Hermes 3 ff). Secondly, he had to gain his own father’s attention, which was much easier said than done.

The just born godling, however, stole away from his cradle when his mother rested, and embarked upon his first quest with barely hours of life in him. Outside of the cave, though, he was quickly distracted by finding a tortoise, which he then killed and hollowed out. He ran strings across the shell, creating the lyre, before he gleefully went back to his task at hand. He slipped from the mount he was born on (Kyllene). He travelled the land swiftly until he came upon the fields that Apollo’s cattle grazed. Carefully he sectioned off 50 of the cattle, and forced them to walk backwards so to confuse anyone that tried to track them.

He convinced the moon to look the other way, and only a lone farmer, Battos, to forget he saw anything. He said to the man, “Old man, digging about your vines with bowed shoulders, surely you shall have much wine when all these bear fruit, if you obey me and strictly remember not to have seen what you have seen, and not to have heard what you have heard, and to keep silent when nothing of your own is harmed.”
Hermes drove the cattle back to a grotto where he built a pit and made fire by rubbing dried sticks together. He was a bit of an ingenious child, for being but a day old. However, once done with that, he dragged two horned cows to the fire, and killed them. He cut up the fat and meat, and roasted it over the fire, preparing twelve portions in honor of the twelve highest gods on Olympus. As he prepared the food, he longed to eat it…however he abstained, because a god cannot feast from the food of mortals. He spent his first night in the world beneath the stars with the cattle before slinking back home. By dawn’s break he was once again in his cradle, playing the part of hapless babe, his mother none the wiser on the antics of her son.

Or so he thought. She approached him soon after and said to him: “How now, you rogue! Whence come you back so at night-time, you that wear shamelessness as a garment? And now I surely believe Letoides [Apollon] will soon have you forth out of doors with unbreakable cords about your ribs, or you will live a rogue's life in the glens robbing by whiles. Go to, then; your father got you to be a great worry to mortal men and deathless gods.”*

Swiftly Hermes did answer her with: “Mother, why do you seek to frighten me like a feeble child whose heart knows few words of blame, a fearful babe that fears its mother's scolding? Nay, but I will try whatever plan is best, and so feed myself and you continually. We will not be content to remain here, as you bid, alone of all the gods unfee'd with offerings and prayers. Better to live in fellowship with the deathless gods continually, rich, wealthy, and enjoying stories of grain, than to sit always in a gloomy cave: and, as regards honour, I too will enter upon the privilege that Apollon has [i.e. as the god of cattle-herders]. If my father will not give it to me, I will seek--and I am able--to be a prince of robbers. And if Leto's most glorious son [Apollon] shall seek me out, I think another and a greater loss will befall him. For I will go to Pytho to break into his great house, and will plunder therefrom splendid tripods, and cauldrons, and gold, and plenty of bright iron, and much apparel; and you shall see it if you will.”*

And while Maia and her son argued, Apollo had risen in search of his cattle. Despite Hermes words to Battos, the old farmer told Apollo what he had seen and the God then followed the tracks to Maia’s home. When Hermes and his mother finally saw the great golden god, they found him in a rage. Hermes, crafty and cunning, snuggled down into his garments and cuddled himself up into a ball as Apollo approached him, appearing to be asleep as a new born bade should be. But Apollo did not fall for such a trick, and instead said to Hermes: “Child, lying in the cradle, make haste and tell me of my cattle, or we two will soon fall out angrily. For I will take and cast you into dusty Tartaros and awful hopeless darkness, and neither your mother nor your father shall free you or bring you up again to the light, but you will wander under the earth and be the leader amongst little folk.”*

Hermes did reply to his brother then, saying, “Letoides, what harsh words are these you have spoken? And is it cattle of the field you are come here to seek? I have not seen them: I have not heard of them : no one has told me of them. I cannot give news of them, nor win the reward for news. Am I like a cattle-liter, a stalwart person? This is no task for me: rather I care for other things: I care for sleep, and milk of my mother's breast, and wrappings round my shoulders, and warm baths. Let no one hear the cause of this dispute; for this would be a great marvel indeed among the deathless gods, that a child newly born should pass in through the forepart of the house with cattle of the field: herein you speak extravagantly. I was born yesterday, and my feet are soft and the ground beneath is rough; nevertheless, if you will have it so, I will swear a great oath by my father's head and vow that neither am I guilty myself, neither have I seen any other who stole your cows --whatever cows may be; for I know them only by hearsay.”*

Apollo then laughed at him, saying in return, “O rogue, deceiver, crafty in heart, you talk so innocently that I most surely believe that you have broken into many a well-built house and stripped more than one poor wretch bare this night, gathering his goods together all over the house without noise. You will plague many a lonely herdsman in mountain glades, when you come on herds and thick-fleeced sheep, and have a hankering after flesh. But come now, if you would not sleep your last and latest sleep, get out of your cradle, you comrade of dark night. Surely hereafter this shall be your title amongst the deathless gods, to be called the prince of robbers (arkhos pheleteon) continually.”*

In the end, Hermes and Apollo argued on until they came before Zeus with their case. There Apollo gave his accusation, only for cunning Hermes to reply with his own silver tongue, saying: “Zeus, my father, indeed I will speak truth to you; for I am truthful and I cannot tell a lie. He came to our house to-day looking for his shambling cows, as the sun was newly rising. He brought no witnesses with him nor any of the blessed gods who had seen the theft, but with great violence ordered me to confess, threatening much to throw me into wide Tartaros. For he has the rich bloom of glorious youth, while I was born but yesterday--as he too knows--nor am I like a cattle-lifter, a sturdy fellow. Believe my tale (for you claim to be my own father), that I did not drive his cows to my house--so may I prosper--nor crossed the threshold: this I say truly. I reverence Helios greatly and the other gods, and you I love and him I dread. You yourself know that I am not guilty: and I will swear a great oath upon it:--No! by these rich-decked porticoes of the gods. And some day I will punish him, strong as he is, for this pitiless inquisition; but now do you help the younger.”*

Unfortunately for Hermes, his own father could see the wheels turning in his head, and then ordered him and Apollo to search out the cattle. This time, though, the king of the gods did order Hermes to be honest and take his brother to them. And so he did, leading the great Apollo to the grotto that held his cattle. However, while impressed with Hermes great skills (and more so with the fact that he killed two cows on his own while being but a new born babe), Apollo twisted a part of osier withes, and attempted to bind Hermes hands. The withes, however, fell from Hermes arms to the ground, where there they grew and covered the cattle. Apollo stood astonished as he gazed.

Looking from side to side, Hermes then took up his lyre which he had brought with him, and began to play. He entranced Apollo with his song to the point that he brother then agreed to trade the cattle for the instrument. But then an idea struck Hermes, and he created the shepherd’s pipe, and played it as well. Apollo was once again entranced, and traded the skill of divination by stones and birds and well as the heralds staff. And then the brothers made an oath to each other. Hermes swore to never steal anything from Apollo again, and indeed to keep clear of the god’s home. And in return, Apollo swore to lover no man or immortal as well as he then loved Hermes. And Zeus did confirm that oath, and thus they were bound to it.

And then Zeus did confirm one more thing, that Hermes was the twelfth seated deity on Olympus, messenger to the gods and mortal men, master of thieves, bringer of luck, wanderer, and many other things. And so, the young godling left his mother to be raised as a prince of Olympus should be, and then came to take his seat at his father’s side. (Story of the cattle comes from: Homeric Hymn 4 to Hermes (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C7th to 4th B.C.) * marks direct quotes from text.)

However, once free to do as he pleased, Hermes returned to the old man Battos, and for telling Apollo of his theft, the god then turned the man to stone where he stood. (Hesiod, The Great Eoiae Frag 16 (from Antoninus Liberalis, Metamorphoses 23) From that point on Hermes acted as all gods acted. He gave favor to those whom he loved and cherished, and punished those that dared to defy the gods.

Among the many things he did, though, he gave Pandora a box in which many evil spirits where locked away from man. In the box, Hermes placed lies and falsehood, gifts born of his silver-tongue; though he had long sworn to never tell a lie himself. He also tied Prometheus to the mountain, as punishment for giving mankind the gift of fire, and each morning he called the eagle to feast upon the titan’s entrails. He assisted Perseus in his quest against the gorgon, giving over his own winged sandals so that the hero could fly. Hermes did so, some say, out of love, others say it was because Zeus bid him to. In truth, he did it for both reasons, and eventually took Perseus as a lover. He sired children within women, and for hundreds of years the youthful god played more than aided those around him. He even saved his own brother, Dionysus, from the wrath of Hera by changing him into a goat.

Hermes sense of humor was never far from him in the things he did. Though, perhaps, Hercules was not of the same humor as the messenger sold him to slavery. All the same, Hermes answered the prayers of men in many ways, none ever direct, and few ever simple to understand. One man prayed for money, and was never answered until the day he destroyed the god’s effigy, and coin spilled from the wreckage. He guided the dead to Hades, and escorted Persephone from Tartarus…or would have if she had not eaten the fruit of the Underworld.

And of all these things, nothing, perhaps, caused the greatest trouble as when Eris tossed the golden apple between the great goddesses of Olympus. Hermes, as ordered by Zeus, sought out the shepherd turned prince, Paris, to come stand judge over the goddesses. Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite all rose to claim the title, and each offered Paris great gifts if he were to choose her. But Aphrodite offered the most tempting, the hand and heart of Helen, the most beautiful mortal woman. And so, Paris choose Aphrodite, and Hermes then stole her from her husband, a powerful Grecian king.

Thus the Trojan war was born.

Hermes, ironically, sided with the Greeks…by Zeus’ request. However, he was not much of a fighter. Nor was he particularly biased against the Trojans, as he lead Priam to see his fallen son, and then helped the king still Hektor’s body away for a proper burial. And as the war came to blows, Hermes had found himself pitted against Leto, mother of Apollo and Artemis. Against her he refused to fight, and politely set aside his golden sword saying: “Leto, I will not fight with you; since it is a hard thing to come to blows with the brides of Zeus who gathers the clouds. No sooner you may freely speak among the immortal gods, and claim that you were stronger than I, and beat me.” (Homer, Iliad 21.493)

It is from this moment, as the cooling embers of war died out, and the Greeks set sail for their own shore, that Hermes awoke not within the walls of Olympus, but within a strange, new world.

Overall Info
Rating: G - NC17.
Death: Probably should discuss, but a maybe.
Smut: Only with a plot.He'
Yaoi - Het - Yuri: He'd be down for it - Certainly - Only with Magic.
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Hermes

August 2010

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