Ulysses Dies At Dawn

by The Mechanisms

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about

Ulysses Dies at Dawn. That's the word on the street, at any rate, if you talk to anyone who saw what went down at Calypso's Bar the other night. Who is behind the thuggish band known as the Suits - Heracles, Ariadne and the others? What is Ulysses's secret? And what is hidden within the security of the Vault?

This is the second studio album by The Mechanisms, written 2012-2013 and presented at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August 2013.

credits

released July 16, 2013

Recorded, mixed and mastered by Jimmy Hetherington @ PCE Audio.
"Penelope" artwork by Ruth Wilkinson.

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The Mechanisms Oxford, UK

The Mechanisms: a band of immortal space pirates roaming the universe in the starship Aurora. Some say they’re from a steampunk future, others claim they’re from a cyberpunk past, a few even whisper that they may be from a dieselpunk alternate now. They are all correct. ... more

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Track Name: 'The City'
Ulysses dies at dawn. At least, that’s the word on the street among those as saw what went down at Calypso’s.

Now listen up, we’ve got a labyrinthine twisted task of a tale to tell and if you don’t keep up, you might get lost.

First, to understand how this all goes down you’ve got to know a little about the planet we’re talking of. See, on this planet there was a city, grim old city, the sort of place the rain beats down like coffin nails and the air wafts with the cigarette stench of betrayal. My kind of town. Now this city, grim old city, starts to grow. And when it meets other towns, other cities it absorbs them, takes them into itself, until soon enough there’s no land left. So the city grows into the sea, and when there’s no sea left it grows upwards into the sky, and when there’s no sky left the city burrows inwards, into the bowels of the planet. Until soon enough, there is nothing but the city. So generations live and generations die in the warrens and the tunnels and even the lower levels of the surface, never to see the sun.

And it’s in one of the deepest, most secret of these tunnels that we meet our hero. Goes by the name of Ulysses. Currently beaten, bloody, battered, unbowed. Spits out a mouthful of teeth and disdain and looks up to see four of the meanest bastards of the meanest streets of the meanest parts of the city. All immaculately turned out in pinstripes. We’ll call them the Suits.

You might ask how we ended up here. I know Ulysses is. Well, it started in a bar, as it usually does. In Calypso’s – a run down old gin joint, pays its money to Dionysus – our hero slumped over a bottle of whiskey, trying to drown enough sorrows to choke a horse. And one horse in particular.
Track Name: Broken Horses
Deep in my cups and my whiskey
Sometimes the screaming will cease
Free-flowing tears fall unnoticed
Numbness my only release
Soldiers will tell you that warfare’s
Just one more title for Hell
I wonder if devils get nightmares
Of all of their victims as well

And broken horses, staring and still
Broken horses, like all those I killed
Broken horses, I can’t outrun
Those broken horses

“See, Ulysses the drunk was once Ulysses the soldier, and a high-ranking one too. And so it was they found themselves fighting in the brutal siege of Ilium some twenty years past. It was a slow, agonising war of attrition against one of the best defended districts in the city. A war that Ulysses the soldier was determined to end.”

After a decade of fighting
Still their defences stood firm
Heartless and cunning and scheming
Victory I would confirm
Offering peace and departing
We honoured our valiant foes
A statue that I had designed them
Sending a message of hope

And broken horses, all that I built
Broken horses, shattered by guilt
Broken horses, riding me down
Broken horses

“Ten years into the siege, Ulysses proposed a solution. Peace and independence for Ilium, free from the city’s clutches. It was agreed, and to commemorate the historic occasion, a vast statue was commissioned, honouring Ilium’s past as famed breeders of horses, back when such beasts still existed. The statue was scanned for explosives, it was scanned for bioweapons, it was scanned for hidden soldiers. There were none. It was accepted, and joy was unconfined.”

“Of course, they didn’t scan it for a soft, almost undetectable signal being broadcast. A signal of Ulysses’ design, aimed to gradually drive to madness those that heard it. After a week, all in Ilium was ripping and rending and tearing and blood. When they finally opened the gates of the district, there were none left alive. The war was over.”

Sometimes it’s hard to remember
The city was not always here
Animals long since extinguished
Roaming with nothing to fear
Once they were known as equestrians
Ilium honoured its past
Statues are all that remain now
Their riders have fallen at last

From broken horses, silent and stone
Broken horses, like cracked and fractured bone
Broken horses, all because of me
Broken horses
Broken horses
Broken horses
Track Name: 'Olympians'
And so, drunk on a cocktail of whiskey and regret, it wasn’t difficult for our erstwhile quartet of psychos to snatch a cracked and sagging Ulysses to be dragged down here. Lightless depths of the City, some rusted-out under passage lit only by an illuminated sign, glowing over the door to a long-forgotten vault. A sign that reads “Penelope”.

Bam! The biggest of the Suits slams his fist into Ulysses’ face again and repeats the question.

HERACLES: “What’s the code to the vault, asshole?”

Ulysses responds less than cordially, so the big guy’s fist comes down again. This continues for some time.

ORPHEUS: “Why is it labelled Penelope? Who is she?”

This question from a pale, thin young man at the back, altogether unsuited to the rough company he’s running with. He’s answered by an old motherfucker off to one side, dark glasses hiding blind eyes.

OEDIPUS: “She’s not living anywhere in the City, and there’s no record of her in the Acheron.”

And everyone knows, if you’re not alive and you’re not in the Acheron, you don’t exist. A stern-faced woman at the back cuts in, ending the discussion.

ARIADNE: “It doesn’t matter. What matters is that we are being very well paid to retrieve whatever is inside it. And I doubt any of us want to fail an Olympian.”

At this point some words of explanation are needed. See, a whole planet covered with steel and wire needs a lot of computing power to run. And there’s no processor more powerful or abundant than the brain. So you have the Acheron, an unfathomably vast network of minds, however badly damaged, plugged in and kicked back into a half-conscious hell to run the City. All ruled over by a mad bastard by the name of Hades.

Now, when the inevitable reality of death is so unpleasant, you better believe people will do anything to avoid it. And in the City you can buy anything, if you have a wallet thick enough for what it costs and a stomach strong enough for what it takes. So you have the Olympians: the oldest, richest and meanest families who can afford to life forever. And Ulysses managed to piss one of them off.

Shortly after the war, our hero conceived of some ill-thought-out revenge on Poseidon Industries, one of the architects of the conflict. Decided to steal something from them. The perfect diamond at the heart of the Cyclops: the industrial laser in Poseidon’s flagship workshop. Wasn’t a great plan. Just got drunk and walked in.
Track Name: My Name Is No-one
Bought a false ID off a forging drunk
Paid a hundred twenty credits for a uniform
Security got better things to do with their time
Ain’t nobody gonna stop me

CHORUS
My name is no-one
My name is no-one
My name is no-one
And I ain’t got nothing to lose

Corridor still as a dead man’s tongue
Doors open with a whimper not a bang
Brim pulled low against the camera’s steel gaze
A head full of bourbon but it’s easy

CHORUS

Workshop air got an acrid burn
The core lies gleaming in its place
One good throw and I can be out the door
Drunken buzz kills the fear

CHORUS

The eye is in sight
Grab a length of steel
Heat sears my skin
But I choke down the pain ‘cause one good throw and the eye of the Cyclops is mine

CHORUS

My name is no-one
My name is no-one
My name is
My name is Ulysses
Track Name: 'Trial By Wits'
Of course, drunkenly yelling out their name in triumph when still in range of the cameras was not the best plan Ulysses ever concocted. Soon word was out and the Eye of the Cyclops became the most worthless perfect diamond in existence, as no fence was fool enough to touch it. Ulysses has been carrying it around for two decades now. Still has it, much to the Suits’ amusement. In fact, the only other thing our erstwhile hero has with them is a snub-nosed laser hidden in a boot, with a single shot left in it. But it isn’t Poseidon that’s hired the Suits.

You’re probably hungry for a bit more description of Ulysses about now, but I’m afraid you’ll have to remain so, as we know little more about them. Man, woman, both or neither: the records are long since lost and the only one of the crew ever to meet them in person will say nothing, save that they were black, beautiful and had a pair of cold blue eyes that couldn’t hide the things they’d seen.

Eyes that are rapidly swelling shut as the big guy lets loose another punch. You probably know him better as Heracles.

HERACLES: “I don’t get it. Why we can’t just kill war hero here and then get the code from the Acheron?”

Ariadne, the woman lurking at the back, shakes her head.

ARIADNE: “The Vault has some sort of deadlock. If Ulysses dies, it seals forever.”

ORPHEUS: “So what do we do?”

The delicate young man in the corner asks. Orpheus.

OEDIPUS: “We do what we were hired to do.”

The blind old motherfucker says with shrug. He walks up to the vault door and removes his glasses, to reveal a pair of data sockets where eyes once sat. Taking out two cables he links them to the door and, forty seconds later, the first of four locks hisses open.

Oedipus is not a bad person. As a doctor he did much good work, even developed a cure for the Sphinx, a disease that accelerated the aging process to such a degree that week-old infants would die, elderly and infirm, never learning the words to ask why. Of course, those affected were generally too poor to afford the cure, but that was hardly his fault. But now Oedipus needed to leave the City, and that cost money. The sort of money a disgraced doctor couldn’t get legitimately. Still, we all have our reasons.
Track Name: Riddle Of The Sphinx
I thought myself an orphan
I clawed my way up from the streets
To earn the rank of doctor
Equal to any I should meet
I couldn’t know my fame
Arose from sly Olympian winks
And soon I’d match myself
Against the riddle of the Sphinx

CHORUS
Four legs in the morning
Two legs in the day
Three legs in the evening
As body and mind decays

A mad disease
Striking poverty
In the slums no-one cares about
In its host
Causes rapid growth
In a week they shall die
Infants then
Look as aged men
But have not learned the words to shout
An old withered corpse yet a child

CHORUS

Many years I spent
In experiment
Dissecting its chemistry
Endless tests
Finally yield success
With the compounds I need
A consequence
Baleful oxidants
Of Olympian eternity
They need to know what it leads to

CHORUS

FATHER:
Oedipus
Come don’t make a fuss
Your research takes a dangerous path
Take a pause
Find another cause
This will end in your fall
OEDIPUS:
Whoe’er you be
If you threaten me
I warn you will feel my wrath
Don’t interfere with my calling

CHORUS x2

Soon the Olympians knew
Just what their immortality cost
They feigned their contrition
Mourning the lives that had been lost
They swore they’d find a way
That wouldn’t lead to loss of life
They showered me with riches
And introduced me to my wife
Track Name: 'Ulysses' Will'
Of course, when the identity was revealed of the man Oedipus killed defending his lab, not to mention his beautiful wife’s provenance – ignorant or not, there’s only so much scandal a public can take.

HERACLES: “Looks like you got in there pretty easy. Remind you of your mom?”

Oedipus says nothing, but strengthens his resolve to get out. Doesn’t matter there’s nothing beyond the City save the automated colonies that feed it and the empty black. Doesn’t matter he has to work with scum like this to afford it. He needs to escape.

ARIADNE: “Impressive. But we still have three more locks to go.”

Ariadne’s voice cuts through the air. See, there are two ways to get into Penelope’s vault. The first is with Ulysses’ passcode. No luck there. But Ulysses did leave instructions for another way to get it open, after they were gone.

HERACLES: “What’s in there? I heard it’s some kind of weapon.”

ARIADNE: “We don’t know for sure. According to the will whatever it is can bring down the Acheron and overthrow the Olympians.”

HERACLES: “Yeah, right.”

ARIADNE: “I don’t believe it either, but our employer wants it, so if our friend here won’t open the door, we proceed with the trials.”

Four trials: a trial of wits, a trial of strength, a trial of song and a trial of love. The suits picked to tackle each one. As for why Ulysses had designed such a high-minded security system, well, that was a long time ago. A young, idealistic Ulysses. Before ten years of war and twenty years of dulling the pain. Twenty years of Sirens.
Track Name: Sirens
CHORUS
Come my way and stay my honey
Lay your body down next to me
We can chase away your worries
Sleep in peace and serenity

CHORUS

Stroke the spun gold of my hair
I’ll give you joy too strong to bear
The fury of a beast untamed
The softest pleasure the sweetest pain

CHORUS

Touch my lips as red as flame
I’ll give you power hard to contain
For one night you’ll reign supreme
There’ll be no battle you cannot win

CHORUS

Drink from my cup and soon you’ll find
Your soul no longer remains confined
So let the lotus set you free
Soar above life’s travesty
Track Name: 'Trial By Strength'
If you asked the Ulysses currently kneeling in front of the Suits why they’d created the trials, I doubt they could tell you. Still, the coding problems and logic puzzles that formed the trial of wits have been silently solved by Oedipus, so next up is the trial of strength, which is a rather romantic way of describing the act of turning a big iron wheel.

OEDIPUS: “I believe it’s your turn, Heracles. I do hope it isn’t too confusing for you.”

HERACLES: “Yeah, maybe I should practice by snapping you in half, you plug-eyed freak.”

Now Heracles is an interesting case. Bastard son of the scion of the most powerful Olympian: Zeus. See, Don Zeus has something of a taste for women from the lower levels, and enjoys toying with the offspring that result. His favourite trick is to offer them a place in the family, contingent on the completion of a suicide mission or two. Most barely last a week, but Heracles? Heracles is too mean, too tough and too stupid to stop. So he just keeps going.
Track Name: Favoured Son
ZEUS: “Come in, lad, come in. I’m told you’ve a right to call me father.”
HERACLES: “Me and half the city, way I hear it. Mum says hi.”
ZEUS: “Come on, kid, don’t be like that. I do keep an eye on my…”
HERACLES: “Bastards? You don’t seem much like a family man.”
ZEUS: “Ah, now that’s where you’re wrong, my boy. In fact, I’m making you an offer here and now to join your family.”
HERACLES: “Become an Olympian?”
ZEUS: “Claim your birthright. There are just one or two jobs need taking care of first, though. To prove you’re worth the favour.”

‘Twas nigh a hundred years ago
When first I met my father
He embraced me close
And asked if I would rather
Live forever or die
The paupers of the streets
They have their meagre years
And so into the Acheron
With the ferryman
A short and mortal span
But the rich they can
Escape eternal drudgery
Son, what do you say?
I can pay your way
If your part you’ll play
In service to the family
As the favoured son.

Buy a life eternal with these bloodied hands
In service to the family as the favoured son.

ZEUS: “Nice work boy. I hear you’re making quite a name for yourself. Oh, and congratulations on making me a grandfather.”
HERACLES: “I need to talk to you about that. I’ve been your errand by fifty years now, but my children…”
ZEUS: “Sorry, kid. Offer doesn’t extend past one generation. Immortality’s expensive.”
HERACLES: “Then I guess this is where you and I part ways.”
ZEUS: “Going freelance? That’s just too bad. I’ll be here if you… change your mind.”

So as the decades passed
I proved myself an asset
The thunderbolt of Zeus
And soon the fates would have it
My violent habits grew
The screams and spurting blood
Were mother’s milk to me
They cradled and delighted
‘cause
I’m the one he chose
Against adopted foes
Steadily I rose
And showed the world my pedigree
Service with a smile
Laughing all the while
Murder or defile
To make my father proud of me
As the favoured son.

Buy myself my Freedom with these bloodied hands
In service to the family as the favoured son.

HERACLES: “What the fuck have you done?”
ZEUS: “Me? Way I hear it, you’re the one that went crazy and murdered his children.”
HERACLES: “I…”
ZEUS: “Look, I took the liberty of having the charges dropped. Of course, that kind of influence doesn’t come cheap. We’ve got some jobs lined up, though, to help you pay off your debt. Welcome home, son.”

When I awoke I found my home
A charnel house, my children
Butchered bled and carved
Their little limbs asunder
And strewn across the floor
One task then another
Paying off my pardon
No time my tears to smother
So if they won’t retreat
Flood the fucking street
But shoot them in the feet
If they try to run away
When they go to ground
Burn their houses down
More will come around
In penance for my family
As the favoured son.

Buy myself redemption with these bloodied hands
In service to the family as the favoured son.
Track Name: 'Loose Threads'
Don’t feel bad for Heracles, though. He always was a nasty piece of work. But the wheel is turned, and the second of the four locks slides open with a click.

ORPHEUS: “Is it my turn now?”

Orpheus asks, staring at the small microphone situated in the door.

HERACLES: “Yeah. And don’t screw it up this time.”

See, Heracles and Orpheus had worked together before, backing up Jason on the Fleece job. But things had gone south pretty badly.

ORPHEUS: “Me? Hylas was your fault. If you had stuck to the plan he’d still be here.”

Heracles is crimson with rage. He had been very fond of Hylas. Ariadne cuts him off before things escalate.

ARIADNE: “Calm yourself. Now. Orpheus has a job to do, so let him do it.”

Heracles takes a breath.

HERACLES: “Alright, but only out of respect. Your dad helped me out once.”

ARIADNE: “Don’t give me that bullshit. We need the brat if this door is to be opened, so let him sing.”

Orpheus takes out his lyre, and does exactly that.
Track Name: Trial By Song
I’m not a gambling man
I don’t know how to play this hand
I was dealt by force
Thought I could speak easy
But you just bent my words right back on me
Then I broke the law

CHORUS
Now here beneath the rust
The skytrain rattles round
overhead
The raindrops fall through dust
And shatter on the ground
black and dead
I never should have placed my trust in the City
The vulture town that picked me clean

“And all at once, as though answering the call, the vault is filled with music.”

I’m not a lawless man
I always trusted in your plan
I was dumb like that
I chose the straightest path
But all the landmarks moved as I walked past
Now I can’t look back

CHORUS

I’m not a fighting man
I never act on wrath’s command
But I know you do
I’d rather run than stand
You’d rather force my hand than understand
That I’m not like you

CHORUS
Track Name: 'Hades'
And so the third lock opens. Silently, this time, leaving only one more to be dealt with.

ORPHEUS: “I can finally pay Hades.”

Orpheus barely whispers it, but it’s enough to prick the ears of both Heracles and Ulysses. Neither says a word, but the pieces are falling into place. Orpheus’ story isn’t unusual: a broke young musician with a dead fiance, just another life chewed up by the City. This broke young musician didn’t accept that though. Didn’t care that he didn’t have the money to have a mind from the Acheron rebodied, or that those as were came back wrong. He needed his true love. There has rarely been a more curious combination of towering spiritual strength and pathetic emotional weakness. So he went to Hades.

Here I should mention that Hades was no stranger. After all, the Mechanisms had been in the City a long time, having our own brand of fun. And our quartermaster, Ashes O’Reilly, felt right at home – decided to seize control of the Acheron and make the ferrymen dance to a different tune. Took on the name of Hades.

And so “Hades” took those foolish enough to venture to the Acheron – Ulysses, Heracles and Orpheus – and decided to have a little fun.
Track Name: Underworld Blues
ULYSSES
Hades, Hades
Hear my petition please
My name is Ulysses
I seek to bury my fractured memories

In the war, in the war
The horrors that I saw
Saddled grief to my core
I can’t take it any more

HADES
Ulysses, Ulysses
You come here on your knees
Begging for my release
But I warn you it ain’t that easy

In your mind, in your mind
The horrors are too entwined
The only peace you will find
Is in the refuge you yourself designed

HERACLES
Hades, Hades
I guess you managed to catch me
My name is Heracles
I was sent here your dog to seize

Of my tasks, of my tasks
This was to be the last
But I know there’s more they’ll ask
So if you’re going to kill me, do it fast

HADES
Heracles, Heracles
You’re tired that’s plain to see
I might just set you free
But you gotta do one thing for me

I’m inclined, I’m inclined
To send you to a friend of mine
He’s got a job I think you’ll find
Will pay the debt to which you’ve resigned

ORPHEUS
Hades, Hades
Hear my reprise
Drifting gently on the breeze
As I beg for my true love’s reprieve

All are hushed, all are hushed
for the song of Orpheus
On my own I am lost
I need my love back, whatever it costs

HADES
Orpheus, Orpheus
You bring your song to us
I can release a mind if I must
You’ve got the payment required I trust

You are poor, you are poor
What you need you can’t afford
But if you can thrive outside the law
I know a job that pays what you need and more

ALL
Hades, Hades, to your terms I will agree
ULYSSES
I’ll find the vault
HERACLES
I’ll do the job happily
ORPHEUS
I’ll find the money for my love
ALL
Then I shall be free
Track Name: 'Trial By Love'
And so Hades helped engineer the situation we now see, both for personal amusement and as a favour to… Well, we’ll get to that. Right now, it’s time for the last lock, the trial of love, and who better for it than Ariadne, famed for her love to Theseus?

As it turns out, almost anyone. A small chamber beside the vault slides open.

ARIADNE: “And what is my trial?”

Her contempt is thick as Oedipus plugs in to analyse it. He lets out a short laugh.

OEDIPUS: “To open the door, one of our number must prove a love stronger than life, and sacrifice themselves without hesitation, reluctance or fear.” There is silence, save for Ulysses’ slow laughter.

ARIADNE: “I have to die?”

OEDIPUS: “Quite. I’m sure your fee will be paid to Theseus, who you love so unreservedly.”

Of course, Ariadne had no intention of dying, nor any feeling for Theseus except hate. Alas, no-one had known what the trial of love entailed, and she’d been playing the spurned lover so long she had believed herself up to whatever it might have been. But this?

ARIADNE: “No.”

Theseus, as it turns out, was just a sap Ariadne had been using to try and regain the societal standing her family had quickly lost when it was revealed her parents had created the Minotaur: a beast that had stalked the City since its founding, plucking the still-living brains from its victims for the Acheron. Ariadne had given Theseus the deactivation codes, in the hope that their marriage would regain some of what had been lost, but Theseus took the credit and publicly jilted her.

No, she couldn’t die yet, not when the Ulysses job paid so well. She had a dynasty to rebuild.
Track Name: Ties That Bind
You engineered the beast
that stalks the streets
Making deals with a monster so much worse
Playing games with lives
and bringing down his curse
Mother, Father
You brought our name down low
Where the city once lay at our feet
now I’m working with these lowlifes just to eat
I reap what you sow
Your one true child

CHORUS
My family will rise again
We’ll reclaim the power that we used to hold
The Minos name reborn
From the ashes bright in letters made of gold
Long we’ve remained in shadow
And in far-forgotten tales never told
My family shall arise
Once again

I tried to right your wrongs
That for so long
Had cast their dark horned shadow over my life
Plucking minds from tear-streaked backstreets dripping strife
He promised freedom
From the infamy you wrought
You built Labyrinth on blood and pain
And Theseus I thought could hide the strain
But release can’t be bought
From the ties that bind

CHORUS

So Theseus hunted for your Minotaur
With the strings of code I gave it wasn’t hard
To find it and deactivate its guard
It tried to fight it
But programming won out after all
Collapsing in a sparking metal heat
My preening hero claimed all credit for the feat
Completing my fall
In dishonour I am tied

CHORUS

Mother, Father, you’re both long dead
And I’m betrayed by the one I was to wed
There was no love there, my heartstrings long since cut
The Minos noble name lies in the mud
But not for long
Track Name: 'The Daidala'
It doesn’t look like the last lock’s being opened any time soon. And so the fifth Suit emerges from the shadows. The one who gathered our motley band together, played Zeus and Poseidon off against each other, and even managed to talk Hades into helping him assemble them.

Daedalus.

Lot of tales about Daedalus. That he trades as an Olympian under the name Hephaestus. That he had his own son killed for getting too ambitious. That he designed the Acheron as the original architect of the City, back when it was still known by its true name: Labyrinth.

And he wants whatever is in this vault. If it can break the Acheron and challenge the Olympians, it belongs with Daedalus.

DAEDALUS: “Open it.”

His voice gives no options. There is silence, finally broken by Orpheus.

ORPHEUS: “I’ll do it. Just make sure Hades gets the money.”

DAEDALUS: “Of course. Just get it done.”

So Orpheus steps into the chamber, a dull whirring begins inside of it. But he can’t see it through, though, can he? Flinches, looks back, and it doesn’t work. Steps out and the door’s still closed. But it does give Daedalus an idea, as rhetoric about sacrifice and resolve actually operates on quite a simple motion sensor. Can’t tell the difference between the brave and the tied-up. He makes an announcement.

DAEDALUS: “There will be a 33% increase in fee for three of you, as soon as the fourth is bound and used to open the door. I leave the choice up to you.”

All at once everything is guns and desperation.
Track Name: Torn Suits
HERACLES
“It ain’t gonna be me…”
OEDIPUS
“I’m not going down.”
ARIADNE
“I won’t let you kill me.”
ORPHEUS
“Oh, please no!”

OEDIPUS
I will escape this world
Leave its rotten edifice behind

HERACLES
I’ll buy myself forgiveness
My family to avenge

ARIADNE
My family will rise again

ORPHEUS
I’ll buy my true love back

ULYSSES
All right, Daedalus. You want to know what’s in the vault? I’ll show you.

“And with that Ulysses casts the eye of the Cyclops high into the air and fires the last shot of his laser. The beam hits the spinning diamond and it splits across twelve axes, cutting the suits down. Daedalus takes one in the shoulder and one in the leg. Oedipus gets a beam in each eye. Never saw it coming. Heracles takes the lion’s share as three beams slice through him. Another one slices through Orpheus’s pretty throat. Even Ariadne gets one right in the heart. Which leaves three for Ulysses. One. Two. Three.”
Track Name: 'Sunrise'
And just like that it’s over. The Suits lie dead or dying. Daedalus is alive, but in no state to move. And it won’t be long before Ulysses joins the rest of them. Limping over to the door, our hero types in seven letters: ELYSIUM.

The door slides open and reveals the rich green leaves of a tree, standing sunlit in a golden field.

Daedalus doesn’t understand. Can’t understand. How a young Ulysses found the last relic of the natural world and hid it, leaving only a thin passage up to the surface to let in the dawns light. The naïve hope that it might become a symbol of finality and freedom from the Acheron’s grasp. The loss of Penelope, buried here as the first to once again die a true death. Hades could have told Daedalus, if he’d thought to ask, but it’s too late now.

Thoughts of revolution are long gone, and Ulysses now simply seeks to rest. The vault door closes, never to reopen.

And as the weary hound, once more at its master’s feet after so long, lays down with the sunlight warning its fur, breathing its last – even so did the eyes of Ulysses close forever.
Track Name: Elysian Fields
Elysian Fields roll out before me
Sunlight dapples through the leaves
And plays among the oak tree
As I wait for my release

Lying here amongst the flowers
I can rest my weary bones
In the earth with my beloved
I will find my final home

Long ago I sought to share it
That death might not be mine alone
But the Labyrinth-spawn, they could not bear it
They shall not reap what I have sown

Resting here upon the soil
As dawn fills my heart with light
Beside my wife and far from toil
Sunrise breaking through the night

No-one shall pull me from my slumber
My mind to plague with thoughts of life
Forever free of pain and hunger
As I leave the city’s strife

Sleeping here bathed in sunshine
I have found where I shall lie
I have found my heart’s true calling
Elysian fields where I can die

Elysian fields where I can…

THE END