Europa, Part 2

Europa bent down and picked a peculiar bunch of sandy, purple wildflowers. She stuck them around the horns of the bull, tying the stems. The white bull nuzzled her shoulder, grunting. It sank to the ground, sighing almost. Europa sat on its back, petting his head. She laid her hands on his horns.
Suddenly the bull jumped into the air. Europa grabbed the horns, holding on for her life, screaming. She looked around: They were ten feet in the air. The bull crashed on top of the water, its feet padling furiously. Looking back, Europa noticed she was 20 feet from the shore. Looking down, she was amazed. The water below was filled with slim, beautiful women, dressed in translucent, blue gowns. Seaweed green hair covered most of their bodies. The Haliades: the nymphai, nature-spirits, of the sea. The water below crashed, smooth yet curving. The bull ran on top of the water like some magic horse. Up ahead, waves froze in midair like ramps or bridges over the water. Dolphins and Sea-Serpents brushed the water, with the handsome young bodies of men clinging to them, waving their fish-tails and blowing conches: the Tritones, mermen. That was when the bull spoke.
It was a deep voice, commanding yet gentle. "Do not fear, my love. I am the Great God Zeus, come to make you a queen." Europa froze, hands clinched to the horns, saying, "But... Here is Queen of Heaven!" Zeus laughed, bellowing over the waves, "No, my sweet. Not Queen of Heaven." A dot of land rose on the horizon, becoming closer and closer, bigger and bigger, the towers of a red and blue palace stretching into the heavens. The bull bellowed again, "Welcome to Krete!"

That night, when Europa fell asleep in the arms of Zeus, now in his true form, she had a dream. In it, the nameless woman from her previous dream stood before her. But now, she was clothed in rich garments. The title of her new name stretched above her head. And Europa recognized the woman. It was her.

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