Jason–A Short Story

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls ©2015 Ross D. Willits

Jason, A Short Story

A few months ago, I wrote a story called “Persephone” that was an updated telling of the Persephone myth (published here). It got me to thinking about other mythological stories I could give a similar treatment to. For some reason I thought of Jason and Medea. It seemed like a very modern story of betrayal, trophy wives, high stakes business and more. So here it is…

(For a brief explanation of the mythological characters, see the Legend at the end of the story)

 

Jason, by Ross D. Willits

Hold on one second, I’m just getting in the car. No, don’t put it in the trunk, I’ll keep it with me here. I said, I’ll keep it with me!

I thought Uber drivers would speak better English than regular cab drivers.

No! Would you please?! I’m on the phone! The address is on the appointment, just go!

I can’t believe it. Asshole. Where was I? … Right.

So the merger is going before the board next Tuesday. I need to know what could possibly come up and bite me in the ass between now and then. Everything has to be entirely buttoned up for the press, the investors, and by God, the Feds. It’s on you if a single word leaks out on this, or one snide hashtag hits Twitter. Got it?

I’m on my way home for a couple of hours of sleep, and to try to finish things up with Maddie and the kids.

I know she’s pissed, but it’s just business, and she should understand that. She knows how this works.

Yeah. So I’ll call you when I get back on the road. Stay by your phone just in case.

Call Les.

Les! Glad I caught you! … Yeah! No, I’m on my way home to finish the deal with Maddie.

… Right. Look, I know Argo would not be where we are without her, but she’ll have nothing to complain about.

It was her idea when we fleeced her father. She’d been looking for ways to get back at him for years. He was a monster and a tyrant. You know that as well as anyone. You shoveled out an eternity of his shit then he changed the rules on you to screw you over.

Well now it’s her turn at the wheel of shitty fortune. She landed on the whammy, and the Argo is sailing without her. Her and the boys I’ll take care of, but yeah. She’s out. She stabbed so many people in the back on our way up, she’s too much of a liability now that we’re merging with Corinth. I can’t trust her. How can I? You know that.

She’ll sign the papers one way or another, then Gail and I will get married the day after tomorrow—then the next day, the merger goes through. You’ll be there for that, won’t you?

Business is business, and family is family, but family is business too. It’s not like we invented global commerce. This is how it’s always been done. Time immemorial.

Les, you’ve been my muscle for years. You know that. You’re the real hero of the whole Argo story. I’m not joking. And I need you to really step up now. I need you to run interference for me with Maddie if shit gets ugly. Will you do that? There is so much riding on this thing with Gail, with her father and the merger. Argo is sunk if this doesn’t all come through, and if I don’t handle Maddie right it all goes down in flames.

Wait! Where are you going? You were supposed to go north on 8! North!

No, that was for the driver. He’s obviously an idiot. Can’t follow his own GPS!

Oh. When did that happen?

Huh. I didn’t see any detour signs. So Les, can you be ready for whatever? We may lose a few tailfeathers on the way, but we can push this thing through, right? Right.

… Talk to you.

Shit. So the 8’s closed? Didn’t know that. What’s the detour like?

Call Carlton.

No. That was to my phone. Now you’ve… Cancel. Cancel. Dammit.

Call Carlton.

MIS-ter Carlton! Jason here.

… Ha! Yes, your future son-in-law and business partner. I don’t know which is more exciting, I really don’t. Ha HA!

Next week is the culmination of everything we’ve been working toward. Merging Corinth and Argo and keeping it in the family through Gail must be a dream come true for you, sir!

… Yes, Cupid had something to do with it, but you, sir, drive a hard bargain!

Look, Carlton, I’m on my way to deal with Maddie, and I’m pulling out the stops to keep things cool and under control with her, but you know how she can be. I don’t want you to assume anything if she goes to the press on this. My team is working to harness the media but its like yoking a fire-breathing bull, if you know what I mean.

No. I didn’t FedEx anything to you or Gail today. … From my address? No. I don’t know anything about it. Has Gail seen it?

… Well if she’s there, get her on the phone with you and we can all open it together. It’s probably a wedding gift somebody sent.… No, sure. I’ll wait.

Oh! I see where we are. That’s really smart. I never would have thought to go this… What? Oh, I’m here. I’m here.

Hey Babe hold on! I need to…

Yeah. Right! Just a couple more days until the big one!

I am talking about the wedding! Look, your father says that there was a package delivered today that looks like it came from my address. No, it’s not from me, but I’m afraid it could be something from Maddie. You know what a vindictive… Right. Sorry, sorry.

Go ahead and open it while I’m on the phone here, would you? What does it…

HOLY SHIT! What the… Gail??!! Gail? Carlton??

Holy shit! Did you hear that? It was like an explosion! It blew my ear off then the call dropped. What the fuck??

Call 911

Yes. Emergency! I was just on the phone with…

Yes. Jason Colchis. I was just on the phone with…

Look! There’s been an explosion at the Carlton estate! I don’t know!! Just get everyone you’ve got over there now!!!

… Yes. That’s the address! Just go!

Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck!! How soon til we get to my house?

Just get there!

Shit shit shit fuck shit shit shit! I can’t even… What the fuck??!! God, I can’t even breathe! Aaaaaaaugh! What the hell is going on?!!

Call Maddie

Maddie! What the fuck??!! What did you do?!??!

Your WEDDING GIFT?? What the fuck did you do?!!!

That’s not… You KILLED them, Maddie! You KILLED them! It’s just BUSINESS?! You KILLED THEM!!

I was going to take care of you, don’t you get it?? The divorce is just on paper. Carlton wouldn’t sell Corinth to Argo without Gail being part of the family!! Now you’ve killed them!!! What have you done to me??????!!! I’m sunk! That’s it!! I’m done! It was all for you and the kids! Don’t you get it? With the merger, we would all be set for generations! Now we’re all FUCKED!

What does that mean!?? Aren’t you there now? You were supposed to be at the house so we could sign the papers! Where are the boys? Where are they?? Are they with you??? The police are going to know it was you, and you bring the boys with you as you fly off in your magic chariot to escape?

You left them at home!!?? That’s worse! They’re sitting at home alone with all of this coming down? Now I’m supposed to deal with the kids myself with all of this shit raining down!!!

This is it!! This is it! Let me out of the car! We’re here! Let me out!!

Maddie! Maddie!!! Oh God, Maddie! What did you do!! It’s everywhere! Blood!! What did you do?????!!!

Legend:

Jason: Jason, captain of the first great merchant ship, the Argo. Gathered a crew of heroes including Hercules to capture the Golden Fleece from the king of Colchis. He faced many trials and obstacles including sailing through the Crashing Rocks and yoking a team of fire-breathing oxen.

Maddie: Medea. Daughter of king of Colchis. Aided Jason in winning the Fleece through sorcery and trickery. Was thrown over for the daughter of Creon, the king of Corinth once he had the Fleece. Killed her own sons rather than have Jason banish them. After the murders, she flees on a dragon-drawn chariot.

Les: Hercules. Hero of the Argo. Among his 12 labors was cleaning the Augean Stables, where thousands of immortal cattle lived and which had not been cleaned in 30 years. Let’s say the level of cow dung was impressive.

Carlton: Creon, King of Corinth. Made a deal to give Jason his daughter in marriage in exchange for the future throne.

Gail: Glauce, or Creusa, daughter of Creon. Was to marry Jason. Medea sent her a poisoned wedding dress that burned her to death when it touched her skin. Her father was also killed when he tried to save her.

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