Descent of the maiden.
[...] Pale, beyond porch and portal,
Crowned with calm leaves, she stands
Who gathers all things mortal
With cold immortal hands ;
Her languid lips are sweeter
Than love’s who fears to greet her
To men that mix and meet her
From many times and lands [...]
Algernon Charles Swinburne, The Garden of Proserpine
THE MAIDEN'S MYTH: While reaching for a narcissus, the young girl Persephone was rudely yanked away from her fields of flowers and into a cavernous entrance to the misty Underworld.
She had spent the first few years of her life in idyllic innocence, playing with nymphs while her mother Demeter fiercely protected her from the outside world, especially prospective suitors. However, when Hades asked Zeus for permission to take Persephone's hand in marriage, he didn't bother consulting the powerful goddess, instead whisking her daughter away to his dark realm without abandon.
Persephone, still little more than a naive and frightened child, missed her mother dearly at first. The Underworld was hardly a comforting place to live, and she felt Demeter's torment in the many dying souls as the outside world refused to flourish under the Spring Goddess' mourning. Her mother was bargaining with every god she knew, allowing the plants on earth to wither and waste until her daughter was back in her arms.
But before she could be sent home, Persephone, either out of naivety or a strange fondness towards the mysterious god who'd abducted her, foolishly ate six seeds from a cursed Underworld fruit - a pomegranate. This act damned her to the Underworld for half the year and permitted her to be free to leave with her beloved mother the other half, giving the earth winter and spring.
THE GODDESS' LEGACY: Now a fearsome goddess, her name is forbidden to mortals, and only referred to in hushed tones as "the Iron Queen". In becoming a ruler of the underworld, she has metamorphosed from an innocent youth into a matured, practical leader, though her verdant touch is seen in the trees of poplar and willow that now line the entrances to the underworld. They say her one moment of mercy upon the dead was granted at the request of the tragic musician Orpheus, whose sorrowful song convinced her to allow him to take back his wife, Eurydice, as long as he didn't look at her until her he was out of the realm of the dead, a task at which he failed.
Despite the cold nature of her work, Persephone has always been a just queen, permitting Heracles to borrow Cerberus to complete a task, allowing the seer Tiresias to maintain his far sight after his death, and lending Psyche an elixer of beauty so she may appease Aphrodite. However, her kindness did not extend to Minthe, a lovely nymph who boasted that she was more beautiful than Persephone and would make a far better queen for Hades. Persephone didn't take this particularly well, and angrily attacked the nymph, kicking her and turning her into a plant. She reacted similiarly to Leuce, who she turned into a particular favorite of hers, a poplar tree.
Despite her place in the secluded underworld, Persephone maintained a friendly relationship with the other gods. She also had some affection for the breathtakingly handsome Adonis, not wanting to give him back after Aphrodite had asked for her help in hiding him. Aphrodite may have been the gorgeous youth's favorite, but Persephone considers herself the true winner, getting to keep him after his death.
As of late, she's started exploring the modern human world out of a mix of boredom and curiosity. It's all very unfamiliar and confusing to her, but she's found her discoveries quite informative.
NATURE OF THE QUEEN: Persephone has always been a cheerful deity, with a great enjoyment of flowers and games. Being in the underworld has changed little of this aspect. She's very polite, and though she knows little about mortals and rarely sees living ones, she considers them interesting and delightful beings with a fresh insight on the world.
Since the initial resentment after her capture faded, she has grown more and more affectionate towards her husband, caring for him deeply despite everything that's happened. Persephone's willful and independent nature has been amplified since leaving home, and circumstance has forced her to grow beyond the submissive, passive role she held in her youth. She now insists on acting as her husband's equal, a fellow ruler of the dead. She's still a little quiet and reserved, and has childish tendencies to behave impulsively and follow fickle flights of fancy, but she is now in charge of her own destiny as well of the realm of the underworld.
Despite her new role, Persephone will always treasure her mother and the time they spent together in her youth. She knows that no one has done more for her, and always greatly enjoys the time spent in her nurturing company. She remains balanced between Hades' elegant wife and Demeter's sweet daughter, a dual persona representative of both life and death.
OTHER TRIFLES: This is an RP journal, using Emilie de Ravin as a PB.
Persephone's canon is lifted from traditional Greek mythology, with some embellishment and filling in the blanks. The concept of Persephone possibly eating the seeds on purpose is from an obscure variant of her tale, usually involving her Roman counterpart, Proserpine.