The goddess went dazed and discomfited away, and Iris, fleet as the wind, drew her from the throng, in pain and with her fair skin all besmirched. She found fierce Ares waiting on the left of the battle, with his spear and his two fleet steeds resting on a cloud; whereon she fell on her knees before her brother and implored him to let her have his horses. "Dear brother," she cried, "save me, and give me your horses to take me to Olympus
where the gods dwell. I am badly wounded by a mortal, the son of Tydeus, who would now fight even with father Zeus."
Thus she spoke, and Ares gave her his gold-bedizened steeds. She mounted the chariot sick and sorry at heart, while Iris sat beside her and took the reins in her hand. She lashed her horses on and they flew forward nothing loath, till in a trice they were at high Olympus
, where the gods have their dwelling. There she stayed them, unloosed them from the chariot, and gave them their ambrosial forage; but Aphrodite flung herself on to the lap of her mother Dione, who threw her arms about her and caressed her, saying, "Which of the heavenly beings has been treating you in this way, as though you had been doing something wrong in the face of day?"
And laughter-loving Aphrodite answered, "Proud Diomedes, the son of Tydeus, wounded me because I was bearing my dear son Aeneas, whom I love best of all humankind, out of the fight. The war is no longer one between Trojans and Achaeans, for the Danaans have now taken to fighting with the immortals."
"Bear it, my child," replied Dione, "and make the best of it. We dwellers in Olympus
have to put up with much at the hands of men, and we lay much suffering on one another. Ares had to suffer when Otos and Ephialtes, children of Aloeus, bound him in cruel bonds, so that he lay thirteen months imprisoned in a vessel of bronze. Ares would have then perished had not fair Eeriboia, stepmother to the sons of Aloeus, told Hermes, who stole him away when he was already well-nigh worn out by the severity of his bondage. Hera, again, suffered when the mighty son of Amphitryon wounded her on the right breast with a three-barbed arrow, and nothing could assuage her pain. So, also, did huge Hades, when this same man, the son of aegis-bearing Zeus, hit him with an arrow even at the gates of Hades, and hurt him badly. Thereon Hades went to the house of Zeus on great Olympus
, angry and full of pain [akhos]; and the arrow in his brawny shoulder caused him great anguish till Paieon healed him by spreading soothing herbs on the wound, for Hades was not of mortal mold. Daring, head-strong, evildoer who recked not of his evil deed in shooting the gods that dwell in Olympus
. And now Athena has egged this son of Tydeus on against yourself, fool that he is for not reflecting that no man who fights with gods will live long or hear his children prattling about his knees when he returns from battle. Let, then, the son of Tydeus see that he does not have to fight with one who is stronger than you are.
Then shall his brave wife Aigialeia, daughter of Adrastos, rouse her whole house from sleep, wailing for the loss of her wedded lord, Diomedes the bravest of the Achaeans."
So saying, she wiped the ichor from the wrist of her daughter with both hands, whereon the pain left her, and her hand was healed. But Athena and Hera, who were looking on, began to taunt Zeus with their mocking talk, and Athena was first to speak. "Father Zeus," said she, "do not be angry with me, but I think the Cyprian must have been persuading some one of the Achaean women to go with the Trojans of whom she is so very fond, and while caressing one or other of them she must have torn her delicate hand with the gold pin of the woman's brooch."
The sire of gods and men smiled, and called golden Aphrodite to his side. "My child," said he, "it has not been given you to be a warrior. Attend, henceforth, to your own delightful matrimonial duties, and leave all this fighting to Ares and to Athena."
Thus did they converse. But Diomedes sprang upon Aeneas, though he knew him to be in the very arms of Apollo. Not one whit did he fear the mighty god, so set was he on killing Aeneas and stripping him of his armor. Thrice did he spring forward with might and main to slay him, and thrice did Apollo beat back his gleaming shield. When he was coming on for the fourth time, equal to a daimôn, Apollo shouted to him with an awful voice and said, "Take heed, son of Tydeus, and draw off; think not to match yourself against gods, for men that walk the earth cannot hold their own with the immortals."