The gray wolf stood at the entrance to the maze. His appearance was one of a hero, with blue eyes and brown hair. Thirteen other Mobians of varying species, six male and seven female, had already entered the maze, but the wolf didn't have faith that they would return.
As the wolf stepped towards the entrance, a hand on his shoulder stopped him. He turned, and found himself making eye contact with a female red echidna. She was dressed in black robes and wore a patch over her left eye, and a few of her quills in her forehead were purple.
"Prince Theseus of Athens," the echidna greeted the wolf coldly.
"Lady Kia of Crete," the wolf responded in turn. "Caretaker of the maze and the Minotaur."
"Don't think I didn't recognize you, Prince Theseus, even if the guards didn't. I don't need my 'eye of scrying' to know your face when I see it."
To emphasize that last bit, Lady Kia flipped up her eyepatch, revealing a small crystal ball she used as a glass eye, before flipping it down again.
"You've got some nerve, posing as one of the sacrifices in order to slay the Minotaur and bring his feedings to an end... but no matter. Even if you were wearing that gauntlet of yours, there's no way you would possibly stand a chance against the Minotaur, even if you did manage to get to his lair and back without getting lost in the maze and starving to death."
"The gods will assist me," Theseus replied. "Of that I have faith."
"Enough tongue-flapping," one of the nearby guards cut in. "Into the maze, wolf."
Prince Theseus stepped into the stone hallway that led into the maze. Almost immediately, a portcullis slammed down behind him, trapping him inside.
"Take one last look at the world outside the maze, Theseus," Lady Kia taunted the prince, "so you'll have something to remember when you're slaughtered by what lurks within."
The wolf didn't respond.
"That Lady Kia is such a jerk. She and I go way back. I'm sure she's been waiting eons for today."
The entrance hallway ended at the first of many intersections that made up the maze. Torches on every wall kept the maze illuminated, and every corridor seemed to look the same. The fourteen sacrifices-to-be, including Theseus, were gathered just before the intersection.
"Still, she's right," one of the females, a blue-tongued lizard who used to be an Athenian chef, pointed out. "We're doomed. Even if we made it through the maze alive, the minotaur would make short work of us."
"Don't be so pessimistic. I've got a few aces up my sleeve. For example..."
Theseus pulled a loose brick from one of the walls, then reached into the revealed hole and took two things out: a ball of string and a polished gauntlet.
"I hid them there this morning," the wolf explained. "Princess Ariadne gave the string to me so I could use it to keep track of where I've been. The gauntlet was mine to begin with; it'll give me an edge against the Minotaur."
The others watched in confusion. Theseus ran back and tied the end of the string to the portcullis blocking the entrance, then unraveled it as he proceeded back to the intersection.
"Everyone stick together and follow me. DO NOT wander off. Just stay close and you'll be fine. If you get lost, look for the string. And when we reach the Minotaur, let me confront him alone."
"What is taking so long? ¡Tengo mucho hambre! Why can't the sacrifices navigate the maze a little más rápido?"
In the maze's deepest chamber, the Minotaur paced back and forth impatiently. He resembled a Mobian bull, with one brown eye and one "eye of scrying" like Lady Kia's. His chamber was decorated like a throne room, with a main exit leading to the maze proper and a side exit leading to a secret exit route. (Why a Minotaur in a Grecian civilization had a Spanish accent, nobody seemed to know.)
Finally getting sick of pacing, the Minotaur sat down on his throne again... just as the sound of footsteps reached his ears.
Aha! The sacrifices come at last!
The Minotaur watched the entrance, and before long, Prince Theseus stepped into view, followed closely by over a dozen other males and females.
"Minotaur!" Theseus called out. "I am Prince Theseus of Athens, and I am here to see to it that the children of my country no longer live in fear of being sacrificed to you!"
"You are muy loco if you think you stand a chance against me," the Minotaur replied. "You shall make a fine appetizer!"
With that, the Minotaur jumped to his feet and tried to grab the wolf... who disappeared into thin air at the last second.
Before the Minotaur could figure out what had happened, he felt a blow to the back of the head. He spun around, and Theseus was now perched on his throne.
"This gauntlet is sacred," Theseus explained. "With it, time and space are my servants."
The Minotaur lunged for the prince again, but he teleported out of reach once more. After several more rounds of this, both of them seemed to be getting tired.
"Ugh!" Theseus's opponent muttered. "This is going nowhere! Señorita Kia, ¡yo necesito tu ayuda! Come here, pronto!"
The other sacrifices could only watch as Theseus and the Minotaur traded blows. Theseus used his gauntlet to teleport away whenever the Minotaur was upon him, but the massive beast had the advantage in size and strength.
Then Lady Kia appeared at the side door, wielding a sword.
"Need some help, Muro?"
"Don't just stand there, señorita! ¡Ayúdame!"
Lady Kia needed to hear no more. The next time Theseus teleported, she moved in and tried to chop his head off with the sword-- only for him to notice and block with his gauntlet just in time.
"Two against one, eh?" Theseus muttered. "I guess you wanted a fair fight."
"You lost your chance at fairness when you brought the sacred gauntlet into play."
Theseus was about to retaliate, but the Minotaur's next attack forced him to duck away.
As the battle raged on, Theseus began to tire. Every teleport took a bit of energy out of him, and he knew that at this rate, he would drop from exhaustion before his opposition did. He needed a plan.
I've only got enough left in me for one more warp. Better make it count...
Without warning, Theseus maneuvered between Lady Kia and the Minotaur. Both lunged at him, and he held his breath and vanished at the last instant.
The result was poetic. All at once, Lady Kia's sword sank into the Minotaur's heart, and the Minotaur's hand caught and snapped Lady Kia's neck. Both figures dropped dead on the floor of the chamber.
"You did it!"
Princess Ariadne herself rushed in through the same side door Lady Kia had used, having followed her in secret. Her figure was breathtaking, a green cobra with black markings, dressed in blue.
"I couldn't... have done it... without you... Ariadne..."
Theseus was clearly out of breath as Ariadne took him in her arms. Their lips met shortly before he finally passed out.
And with that, Tashako Ana brought the story to an end, calling the audience back to reality. Applause filled the air.
Somewhere deep in the audience, Wolfen smiled. The myth of Theseus and the minotaur was an ancient one, but the anaconda had a way of breathing new life into any tale.