Then Zeus who gathers clouds addressed him angrily,
“You, Iapetos’ Son, knowing cunning more than all,
with glee you stole the fire and deceived my mind;
for you will be great sorrow, and for future men.
As fire’s price I’ll give an evil thing, which all
shall cherish in their hearts, embracing their own scourge.”
She came into the world with fire and iron, forged by the hammer of Hephaestus. She was created for one purpose and one purpose alone - to rain evil down on the heads of mankind. She was a tool and nothing else - a tool of Zeus’ petty vengeance.
The first thing she was aware of was pain, a burning sensation running across her newly-created body. Then it stopped, like an amphora of ice had been poured over her head. A voice spoke, thunder echoing in her empty mind. Then there was nothing once again.
The next time she awoke she had a purpose. She was to join Epimetheus, brother of Prometheus the Betrayer, among men. There was a jar, as well, and more that was slowly fading from her memory. Soon all that was left was the drive to descend and a hunger for knowledge.
Her initial task went smoothly. Within a few days they were married, despite Prometheus’ ardent protestations. Several years passed, and they had two children and a farm. They began to forget the jar that lay in a back room. Her purpose drifted away, and she lost the memory of her creation to oblivion.
There came a day, however, when Epimetheus was gone - into town or tending the fields, it mattered not - and Deucalion and Pyrrha were playing outside, leaving her alone. She thought nothing of it for some time, but then something changed. She felt a pull, and, unable to explain this strange draw, followed it. It led her to a small storage room, untouched since her arrival at the house. In it lay a jar, seemingly small and innocuous. But there was something about it that kept her attention, wouldn’t let her return to her previous tasks. She had to find out what was in it, couldn’t leave it untouched.
She opened it. There was darkness, a sound like an avalanche, foggy tendrils invading her eyes, nose, throat. Then it was gone, disappearing into the world, bringing with it death, plague, famine, and all things evil. All that remained was a golden speck, hovering over her for an instant before it, too, vanished, and hope was given to the world. Then Pandora stood alone, surrounded by the wreckage of humanity.