THE SON OF NEPTUNE

Percy scrunched his face. For some reason. Around seven-feet-tall in height. You knew what you were looking for. Nearby a female responded. The sword emanated a dim glow that seemed to give Percy sudden warmth. In front of him. considering the fact that Percy may be on the menu. Unless if she had an excruciating appetite. He felt like he had a hidden connection to this sword. The rest was like reaching into a deep abyss. It is the only way. Unknowingly. Percy reached into his pocket. They had obviously once been part of a great house. The thing in Percy·s hand³once a pen³had transformed into a three-foot-long bronze sword. Even with peripheral vision. who was he? All he could remember was his first name. the night was moonless. Then the creature stepped out from amongst the shadows. the creature towered over Percy. The creature illuminated such power that she gave off her own light. but it wasn't now. pulled out a ballpoint pen and uncapped it. What had happened to him? A noise like leaves crunching made Percy jump to his feet. two yellow eyes observed him cautiously. He couldn't see much otherwise. Percy could no longer see the wreckage and debris that . Why have you brought him here? someone said. Percy spun to the direction of the voice. Plus. Where was he? Better yet. trying to remember.PERCY Percy woke up by himself in the middle of ruins. followed by a growl that Percy figured was too loud to be her stomach. this didn·t disturb Percy. but it was still too far out of reach. The creature was a gray wolf. but nothing came. Percy. except that it was twice the normal size.

So it was technically hopeless for Percy to keep sounding upbeat. Percy was now in his own world.once surrounded him. gray creatures. She was easier to distinguish with her larger size and foul breath." The wolf went silent." Percy looked around. said that other voice again. But Lupa did give him permission to follow her.µ Lupa continued. "I am Lupa. baring its razor sharp teeth." the wolf. but like a fish. "Yes. Even if they did pounce. "But all of my demigods must first pass 3 tests. She signaled him to come . blue jeans. Percy just couldn·t trace back that voice. (Or at least he thought. Percy couldn·t tell what they would do if he moved. Just him against a seven-foot-tall menacing wolf. Percy could see that he was wearing a tattered orange T-shirt that may have been used as a wolf·s scratching post. The yellow eyes of a dozen wolves seemed to bore into him. We call her Juno. "Hera is the one who brought you here. ´Ones you must pass as well. and a fivebeaded necklace.) The wolf hissed. "I train young Roman demigods. Percy had an excuse to give the wolves a not-so-pretty haircut." said the wolf. each one as long as Percy·s finger. responded. Necessary for all of our survivals. "Hera?" Percy guessed. "W-who are you?" he asked. Lupa. Percy positioned his bronze sword pointed at the wolf·s heart. Percy looked up to find himself surrounded by a dozen strong. it flitted away. It is necessary Percy. Come with me." The word demigods stirred back some distant memories. but it seemed too familiar. his voice more confident than he felt. Percy remembered somewhere that canines could sense fear.

Percy noted that growling may have been one of Lupa·s hobbies. There were no trees or plants of any kind from as far as Percy could see. He knew he couldn·t trust her. Percy wouldn·t have been surprised if there were any traps that lay ahead. Percy·s legs buckled. Boiling lava flowed through the chasm.follow her. The forest they had been in earlier had become a rocky terrain. Because apparently. A few feet away from them was a chasm that was at least a hundred feet wide and went on forever. Finally. He followed. Percy couldn·t believe how dumb he was." . Percy wasn·t a bit surprised how easily it took for this Magma Nile River to form. after what seemed like a hike over Mount Everest. she was a natural at it. Percy·s knees buckled again. melting everything that it came in contact with into goo. But he had made up his mind. Percy would·ve been dog chow. Lupa jumped across the chasm with ease. Jump or we'll eat you. Percy hadn·t even noticed that they had been following him this whole time. The other wolves followed with the same agile motion. they stopped. "No cub of mine will hesitate in the face of danger. For some reason his body longed for adventure. She turned and growled. Lupa barked and all twelve of the wolves emerged from a billowing curtain of steam. And Percy had a strange feeling that that was what Lupa was leading him to. Did they really expect him to jump over the chasm with that much skill? The she-wolf turned. Percy hadn·t paid much attention that his face ended up in Lupa·s rear. But it would be smarter to just follow her trail. If the wolves had been given any more opportunities.

Once again. But it had slipped away like gift wrapping. Percy·s sea green eyes focused on Lupa. He didn't know how long it took for the pen/sword to reappear and when he might need it again. Percy had made it across. And the other and the other. you still have two more tasks. chunks of rocks began to tear off of the chasm. Bit by bit. Might as well go for it. not bad at all. The sheer thought of falling into the lava was enough to make his legs start quivering. positioning themselves like floating platforms." And once again. This enhances the probability of him dropping down into the lava and becoming Percy Soup. Without any thought. Percy called forth all of his power and leaped«across to the other platform. There was that pen. Come with me. But it was definitely not that easy. Fear had been his biggest problem. Percy suddenly remembered his elementary childhood when he used to play hop-scotch with his friends. As they ran down the path. demigod. And that was exactly what he needed. Percy had no choice but to follow the pack of wolves through the woods. He was falling toward the lava. He decided to keep it. a single weight in his pocket. But one thing was for sure.Percy could just imagine the other wolves slobbering at the mere thought of tearing through his flesh. Besides. he had already landed on one of them. he thrust out his arms. he reached into the pocket on the side of his jeans. . After a few more bounds. he finally had a way to get across the chasm. Percy realized he had dropped his sword. Percy didn·t know what he had done. So with a shrug. She nodded her approval. Percy jumped. He had a feeling that it wasn't the dumbest thing he'd ever done. All Percy had to do was land on each of the platforms as if they were hopscotch squares. "Not bad. A welcoming power surged through him.

" Percy carefully submerged himself into the river. Once more. The rock was covered by a thick layer of vines. "shall leave what's important for his weakness. This time when they stopped. Lupa chanted." Lupa began. until the true enemy comes. Was this how it felt when you were in a near-death scenario? Taking slow. "Help me Percy. When he reached the other side. well from somewhere. He had a bad feeling about this. it was at a boulder. the wolves nodded at him in what he thought was an approving manner. He was on fire. I'm making a giant a bridal gown. Hold onto something he recalled from. At first they were soft. That·s when the voices came. "No pup of mine will bow to pain. Stay idle if that·s what pleases you. But he had nothing to hold onto. It burned him and his clothes. but acid. eyes never leaving Lupa. The voices so familiar. All he knew was it wasn't made of water." Percy reached into his pocket. A sense of Déjà vu came over him as he felt himself burning to ash. Lupa indicated that he sit on the rock. this time the rest of the wolves joined in as she chanted. He found that it was not water. it said." "Sweetheart I need you. The wolves crossed and turned back to face him. hesitate and you will be our meal. The only opening was the one they had come from." "Brother. Hold onto something." . or at least Percy thought it was a river. giving Percy no choice but to tag along. anything. Yet so distant. "No pup of mine. Percy sat carefully. deliberate steps. but the sound grew to a ringing effect. he crossed. help me. they ran away.The wolves stopped in front of a river.

µ Percy grimaced. like scraping a metal against rock. The boy·s expression hardened. . and the foulest stench. Perseus Jackson. ´Thy name is Kronos. raggedy torn robes. But something about this boy brought back memories that even Percy didn·t want to remember. son of Poseidon. Somehow Percy knew that this boy was a son of Hermes. ´Luke is dead. young hero. A double-bladed scythe materialized into the teenager·s palm. His soul rests in the Underworld. The way his voice sounded. the titan became a ten-foot-tall snoring woman with mud-baked skin. His voice sounded ancient as well. Lupa and the other wolves turned and walked away. out of the woods walked a boy in his late teens early twenties with a scar down his left cheekbone. When he said that it felt like time froze at the mere mention of his name. As if on cue. Once a teenage boy."Percy.µ The titan waved his scythe in a circle and finally brought it to his side. That girl needed him so much and her voice did funny things with his heart. But Percy just sat there. ´Luke?µ Percy said.µ ´Fear me. As he did this. ´Hey!µ Percy faced the boy. the titan·s form changed. And you are soon to meet him." "HEY! SEAWEED BRAIN! HELP ME! PLEASE! BY ALL THE GODS HELP ME !" That last voice sounded so familiar. irritated Percy. The boy emanated an ancient aura. the Hunters need you. If you were to not take a bath for over a year³which you strictly shouldn·t do³then you would·ve smelled like a fraction of how bad this woman smelled. waiting for his true enemy. He thrust his scythe out at Percy·s chest. The boy·s eyes were gold. Centuries older than the gods even.

´I«snore«am«snore«Gaia.µ Percy whispered to himself. the Sleeping Giant pounced. but he could still feel his power draining from him. Percy did the most appropriate thing he could think of³he reached into his pocket and pulled out his ballpoint pen. Slowly. But throughout his journey. the swords connected. because a few seconds later. Percy knew that great deities loved to brag. he pulled it toward him. Considering the fact that she had mud-baked skin. as am I. and sometimes the dull gray color of plain stone. weaving the water through the narrow splotches of lava that dotted the terrain. For the most part. The scythe·s blade had become some sort of multicolored slate. Percy moved to block her first blow. But he shouldn·t have underestimated her. In a quick swipe. Percy felt hopeless. In the meantime. never in her life had she come amongst soap. and surprising agility.µ Percy figured that it would·ve taken Gaia at least a minute to finish at least one sentence. ´It is connected to the Earth. Percy had learned that fear was one of his biggest obstacles. "So who are you?" . He hoped that she was also slow.The woman loomed over Percy. he started sensing for water³the only thing that gave him power. He found it. Percy held his concentration. Percy waiting for an opening to return the favor.µ Gaia continued to attack.µ Gaia said. ´Wish me luck. He uncapped the ballpoint pen and soon enough found Riptide embraced in his hand. And he couldn·t just let it win over him. while other parts were pink and purple. ´Ah. Some parts of the blade had a hot red glow. the scythe appeared in Gaia·s outstretched palm. an incredibly bad sense of style. so you like my blade. a stream just a few yards from the clearing. Yet again. He needed a distraction.

" The tree dissolved into the ground. With a roar of fury came from the mass that was dirt lady. "to me you shall return. we must see from where it is Juno sent you. an arm. And nothing would stop him from fulfilling his destiny³whatever it was. even of you. the girl sinking in with it. She looked at Percy with pleading gray eyes. He called forth the water he had been drawing from the stream. because Gaia had cast some sort of magic that made the earth cling onto the soles of his shoes." Whoever he was and whoever Lupa was. "a heart. By someone. The spell had broken and Percy stood there gasping for breath. you puny son of Neptune. letting the tension build. But that was as far as he could go. grasping a struggling blond haired girl. For a quest can't succeed without a sword. son of Neptune. but she still felt so familiar? Lupa came up beside him. or. She became a soaking pile of mud." Once again she brought up her blade. Gaia turned to face her doom. What in Hades had that been about? Who was that pretty blonde girl? Why did he feel so strong a connection to her? And why couldn't he remember her. "Come now. The water rose up in a giant wave and washed on top of the dirt woman. the mother from which you all came." she paused in both speech and movement. He rolled away as the scythe bounced harmlessly off his shoulder." she paused. saying. Percy couldn't even fight back anymore. the quest won't either. Even as a blob of mud. Gaia·s voice still echoed in his head. so he did the one thing he knew he could. . Percy couldn't move. "Without her you won't survive. still sleeping. Gaia grinned evilly at him and. Percy felt like he was in quicksand. He was needed somewhere. Yes. "I am the first mother. Percy had concluded one thing. A tree branch came from the side of her. And if you don't survive. From me you came and. finished."I?" Gaia said³her voice sounding more ancient and powerful than even the greatest god or titan³while fighting onward still. her tan skin covered with patches of dirt.

And with that. Lupa let out a long. and set off to the unknown. . thunderous howl. ´Are you ready?µ she asked. Percy nodded.Lupa gestured Percy onto her back.

Even when people were like: ¶Dude.µ . appeared before her with a not-so-good look on his face. Mitchell expected Annabeth to everything about love.ANNABETH Annabeth entered the Athena Cabin and yawned. But without Percy. the dumb goddess of love. And it only worked like half of the time. every time Madeleine was to walk by. It had been a long day of strategizing how to find Jason's camp. These things gave Annabeth even more reason to hate Aphrodite. Just before Annabeth was about to jump into her bunk. Mitchell was too a coward to confront her. you so like that girlµ. Mitchell? Can·t you see that I·m about to go to sleep?µ ´But³!µ Mitchell whined. But she still seemed too smart to be a daughter of Aphrodite. Mitchell. You would catch him combing his hair and all. Not to mention that she was the daughter of Athena. Piper was a really big help. thinking was the only way that Annabeth could ever fall asleep. as well as helping Leo with the plans of his flying boat. and since Annabeth was the camp leader. girl trouble?µ Ever since Madeleine came to camp a few days ago. And worse. the Half Blood Legion Training Academy. Mitchell wasn·t himself. her younger sibling. She just couldn·t help it when her mind wondered off about Percy. ´What now. Annabeth·s main hobby was to think. ´Let me guess. ´I was designing a perfume for M-Madeleine³. And a not-so-good smell. Mitchell would deny it. Annabeth sighed.

No wonder he couldn·t even confront her. Annabeth shoved him into the nearest bathroom. Annabeth immediately straightened out herself. This would be the first time she'd see him in three months. Annabeth may have gotten some of the stench on her clothes. ´took it from me. ´Good. Unfortunately.µ Mitchell continued. twenty-three days. Percy was gone. What wasn·t there to worry about? Annabeth closed her eyes. . which altered the whole fruity smell. She hadn't seen Percy since August. Sure they had messaged each other every chance they got.µ Quickly. but it was hard to find accessible rainbows to use for Iris-messages.µ ´But this will take forever to get off!µ Mitchell screamed. and the time zones really screwed with things.µ At least Annabeth now knew where the awful stench was coming from. ´³but one of the Ares kids. Annabeth was leaning on what had once been Thalia's Tree. waking up the other Athena campers. it did. Mercifully. there is another demigod camp who·s residents may have caused World War 2. ´Yeah. She had nobody to impress. and poured it on me.Annabeth couldn·t help but roll her eyes. added some muddy water to the content. and forty-six minutes. it was the first day of winter break. begging sleep to come and take away the pain. But the dream that came later had made things worse. and the world was about to be engulfed in chaos. I·ll help you after you take a shower. And now the pain and longing was unbearable. Mitchell stuttered at the mere mention of Madeleine·s name. so it didn·t really matter. Sadly. In her dream. A grin spread across her face as a sleek blue Mazda rolled up the drive. Mitchell needed a lot of help.

" Sally answered in a tired voice." "Oh. Sally Jackson. "It·s like Blowfish said. what if she saw him and realized she didn't love him anymore? Sure they ´sawµ each other when they Iris-messaged. called out." Percy consoled closing the trunk door. Moving ever so subtly closer to Percy. "Finally.· They probably haven't read it yet. They'll love both your writing and your originality. roll up her window. Jackson had become quite acquainted two years ago when she. She shook her head." Annabeth replied as a car door opened and closed. See you after winter break. Percy had promised Annabeth a free copy." Percy's mother. She and Mrs. and drive away." Percy said with a sigh of relief. But what if he had found someone else? What if he saw her and realized he didn't return her feelings anymore? Or worse." Sally visibly brightened. Sally." Sally looked from Annabeth to Percy and back." He looked at Annabeth. ¶publishers get a lot of manuscripts. Luckily. "You think so?" "Absolutely. "Hello. don't be like that." She then proceeded to lean out the window. Annabeth added. . "Yeah Sally. "No replies yet. Mom. but what if somehow . When they do they'll love it and you'll have a million different deals to choose from. give Percy a good-bye kiss. "Not sure. I'll leave you guys to camp. . Percy. It had become a major hit. "How's the book coming along?" Percy had mentioned that his mother had written a novel. . That and some of those publishers are in Timbuktu or something like that. and Thalia went to help Grover retrieve two powerful demigods. there's a lack of books that incorporate growing up on a farm with Greek monsters. They haven't even seen your stuff yet. "You two know me too well. "How are you?" "Good. Annabeth. She looked awfully relaxed in her jeans and t-shirt.It was Percy. Annabeth got the message.

An oak like many of the naiads in camp were."Since when are you happy that your mother·s gone?" Annabeth inquired." Her speech was stopped short as Percy pulled her over to him and gave her a hug. in case any monsters came at him. Annabeth felt warm. Percy ran through the woods. until she was close enough to touch him. Apparently. nothing was on her head. not that her Yankee cap would change Percy's ability to hear her. Annabeth checked her head. Partly because Percy was back and the pain in her heart had subsided. Partly because of the radiation of heat. Percy did so to. Annabeth reached for his shoulder and grabbed it. . his sword. But this time. sprinting his way out of the forest. "Luckily. She called out again. . Soon. her limbs growing heavier with every step. . "That is why I was happy for my mother to leave. but this time Percy took off. Percy never turned back to see if anyone was following and didn't bring out Riptide. As he drew farther away. Annabeth always beat him in footraces. She called out to him." Percy responded to a question Annabeth had forgotten she asked. but it seemed he couldn't hear her. Annabeth began to slow down. Percy turned until Annabeth realized that it wasn't Percy at all . Annabeth was now in a tree. Astonishingly. . . Annabeth wanted to know what was going on. so she chased after her boyfriend. she wasn't telling any embarrassing stories about me or anything . They were about to turn and walk into camp when the dream changed. Percy was running with such speed and stamina that Hermes would·ve been jealous. Down below her was Percy.

Finally she looked at the woman's closed eyes. tears. I'm going to give your dashing Prince Charming a try. and made of dirt. Gaea sighed. "What precisely do you want from me?" "Don't give me that. still in the woman's grasp." Gaia said." she addressed the woman with malice. in the middle of a road that was about three miles from Camp Half-Blood. ´Speaking of which. "That the quest would have failed . "Yes. annoyingly³accurate. For a second." Annabeth stated confidently. yelling. Annabeth awoke. She struggled. had started to leak from her eyes. "Gaea. She pinched herself but she wouldn't wake up. Gaia paused. I'm sleeping in Camp Half-Blood. ." "What did Medea say this time?" Annabeth said with a dab of thick sarcasm. I'll go to any lengths to protect them and according to my prophet . held back for weeks. Annabeth gasped and tried to run." "Test?" "Nothing you need to mind." the earth woman retorted. "Since I failed to break lovely Leo. black hair. Gaea snapped her fingers. . Even with his memory erased. Annabeth found it slightly unnerving that the sleeping woman was so aware of things. 'Percy.Percy·s form changed from the gorgeous black-haired teenager to a grotesquely entranced female." Mother Earth replied. Her expression changed. The woman was exactly as Leo had described her: sleeping. "I hate it when my children are beaten." Her imitation of Annabeth·s voice was surprisingly³but. "You sleepwalked. not anymore. Percy!· in your sleep. Ran through that puny camp of yours. your voice affected him during his test. Annabeth could see Kronos in her. Suddenly. well. leaving wet trails down her face. "And they're looking for you now. screaming in her captor·s arms." Gaea replied. "You don't actually have me.

Surprisingly. But the man was too tall to be a man. But Percy will return«eventually. Percy. Gaia was smart enough to take away all her chances of survival. like Jason?" ´That.without Percy? That I would break him? With his memory erased? Yeah right. pulling Annabeth closer. he hasn't even gotten there to fall in love with anyone. Without warning. It was hard to imagine. didn't he have others with him. Gaea had let her go and was walking around. Gods knew what powers she was hiding. The world around them spun and shifted. The ruin of a palace lay around them and in the distance a man was holding up something large and uncontrollably heavy." she said in her sleeping state. Tentacles of mud were clinging to her legs. my dear. The spinning came to a drastic halt. But it wasn't there." "She didn't want Percy to have friends?" ´Exactly. enough chit chat. All Annabeth knew was that whatever Gaea was planning it couldn't be good. the guy she was so dedicated to had left her. I cannot confirm. Annabeth reached for her knife. "My dear. it made sense that she would be able to travel across herself. hardening within contact. Annabeth couldn't remember reading anything about Gaea having an ability to travel like this. . Instantly. "Oh. but she wasn't mentioned much in any mythology after the whole having her kid kill her husband story. Now." "Well. Annabeth began gasping for air. He's probably fallen in love with some other girl at his new camp." Gaea said. but being personified as the Earth. and make Annabeth completely helpless. They were on a mountain top the San Franciscan Bridge in view. He had power that felt more ancient than the gods." Her voice cracked on the last sentence. Hera really didn't want his fatal flaw to get the better of him.

She remembered being captured and tricked into holding up the heaviest thing imaginable.µ Gaia said. Annabeth grimaced at the sight of this titan. he is my titan son. That something was the sky itself. Something. Atlas.´Indeed. that if dropped. . could flatten and destroy the entire world.

into battle. whoever he was. or Camp Prefect. it was a glorified military camp. or second in command. Mars. for the Mars Cohort in the Half-Blood Legion Camp as well as the Tribunus Laticlavius. Otherwise. the children of the war god. being the Legatus Legionis (commander in chief). everyone was looking to Reyna to take charge. and 400 in the entire Legion. had something to do with Jason's disappearance. cohorts 30 to 40 people. the population last summer had increased to five hundred fighters large because of the Titan War. It was hard being the Praefectus Castrorum.Reyna Reyna knew something was wrong when the black haired. Just because she was good enough to lead her siblings. Even though. . that's what Reyna's gut told her. Everyone was always looking up to Reyna to fight the hardest and best of everyone in the Training Academy. but with no sign of him for two weeks and no one allowed to look for him under pain of death. Reyna knew that she didn't have as much pressure as Jason had. The only difference lay in numbers of soldiers per group since the Academy was far from six thousand fighters large. Campers were organized as Roman Legions had been when they were in power. green-eyed boy entered the camp. At least. the bigger the tents were. the castra or main fort. The Training Academy only got that name so that the demigods parents wouldn't be suspicious and wonder about the new school their children had found. tents pitched in organized groups. In the middle of it all was the only true building in the entire camp. This boy. centuria from six to eight people instead of eighty. Lupa. The farther in you got. A contubernium was nonexistent. came bounding into the camp with the boy perched on her back. the she-wolf.

The clothes on him were worn and dirty. well. Reyna turned back to the wolf. Of course.The new boy had obviously never been introduced to that kind of organization or discipline. Unlike her followers. She saved questions until after the test. He slumped onto the ground. . Lupa and the thirty wolves that stood behind her. nodded in return to the greeting. Lupa shook her head. who's his . . with a lazy wave. Some of the wolves laid down as the younger ones chased their tails. "Hi. but she still couldn·t help but ask. the fighters and leaders at camp weren't strict outside of training exercises. She had expected no other answer. They would probably come better from the boy himself." . just get some answers from him in the way she knew best. that's all Lupa ever knew. in good shape." the boy greeted. Lupa never relaxed. He looked to be about sixteen or seventeen. but not as buff as the Roman campers. She stood at attention in front of Reyna. If he didn't answer. "It is a Training Camp for young demigods. "Well. plainly exhausted. It was rumored those wolves were demigods that had been favored by Lupa and were offered to be with her for eternity. Reyna straightened herself and saluted Lupa as she had been trained. She wouldn't kill him. "Nice place you got here. Her eyes floated off to the mysterious boy that now approached them." Lupa informed her. but at least they had held up well. "Any sign of Jason?" Reyna asked. His hair was black and eyes piercing green that reminded Reyna of the sea. let·s just say that Reyna had her ways to getting what she wanted. What's it for exactly?" Lupa answered before Reyna could. "Who's the newbie?" "All I know is that Hera sent him. Though they were disciplined. She wanted answers. bringing her back to focus. Lupa came loping up to Reyna." the boy reached them and Reyna stopped short. of course they were after the test.

"My first name is Percy. . Mr. she honestly tried." Reyna's eyes widened in shock. He couldn't remember anything. Uhh«I guess nothing seems familiar anymore." "Reyna. but she never seemed to learn her lesson. "what's your name? Where did you come from? How did you know what a demigod was? What else do you know? If you don't give me a straight answer I swear by all the gods that I'll . She'd heard the speech often in her years in training. let's start with your name and age. but I'll show you mercy in these modern times. the kids of the gods?" The boy had his face scrunched as if trying to remember something. . but Neptune. son of Neptune. Once again the boy's face scrunched up in an effort to remember. Only this time it was the boy. anyone would. "Now. As usual. "You mean. not after World War II. "Okay then. When Lupa was done. not Lupa. not only had Jupiter broken the vow. this was the one order Reyna couldn't obey. but failed as miserably as ever. She tried." Reyna just blinked at this kid. anything at all about his live. and then we shall elaborate more. enough. before coming here. So now. Reyna and Lupa exchanged a look that obviously meant shut up.Once again. he gave up and responded to Lupa's request." Lupa ordered. who knew the answer. Finally. In her peripheral vision. In the old days you know what I would have done to you for speaking out of turn." Reyna demanded. A son of Neptune wasn't allowed. Know-it-all. Lupa turned to the new boy. . embarrassed. "I understand your upset. Reyna was going to take this newcomer to the training grounds and give him an interrogation of her own. I don't know my last name or my age. This was no coincidence coming so soon after Jason's disappearance. someone beat her to explaining things. but that does not give you the right to go threatening strangers.µ Reyna looked down.

People got out of Reyna's way as she stormed through the camp. . Some would swear that they could see fire burning around her. Not caring what Lupa's orders were. Lupa called something after her. She was going to get some answers." Reyna wasn't sure if he was joking. So it was then she started questioning him. heading toward the training yards. "I won't make a good sacrifice. showing her bulk. Percy's limbs tensed as if in anticipation of a blow to block. but she kept him directly behind her. Reyna dropped him on the floor like a ragdoll. Anger settled over Reyna like a blanket. All of her muscles tightened. his heels leaving a long trail of dust behind. Reyna left her fists in a threatening manner. Soon. It was times like these that friends of Reyna said she was most like her father.she saw that Lupa seemed to be considering something. She balled her hands. sure that the growing fear that must be there would soon boil over. His reflexes were probably good. Her eyes filled with a lust for blood. Her lips tightened into a thin line as if holding back a scream. but in her own special way. Or worse. "Where are you taking me?" the boy named Percy asked. Percy could·ve been a spy for all she knew. she'd beat him enough that he'd answer any of her questions. She wouldn·t have been surprised if the boy was armed. She yanked him so his hand jerked away. but nobody had been able to withstand any of Reyna·s attacks. just inches from Percy·s face. "What's your Pegasus's name?" It was always best to start with one he obviously knew. ready to strike. They had finally reached the training yards. They were almost to the training yards when Reyna sensed Percy reaching for his pocket. He tried to get a better look at her. Mars. And I'm definitely not very good to eat. but she disregarded it. Reyna reached out and grabbed the boy tightly by the arm and started dragging him down a dirt path.

then. She slung out her gladius."Give it to me. the tip of his sword at her neck. "No." The word came out firm. Reyna was shocked. was different. . This kid. He seemed to sense her moves before she even made them. When she judged the time was right. Percy wasn't even breathing hard. Soon she could feel a trickle of blood flowing toward her purple t-shirt." Reyna swung her blade menacingly. yet nevertheless an upcoming rival. Percy stood his ground. from her sheath. Percy. "You'll learn to respect me the hard way. Reyna was so surprised she let down her guard. The sword·s blade glowed of celestial bronze³an ancient Greek metal. Remarkably." she said in a depraved voice. The biggest shock was when she finally made a direct hit blade on Percy's arm. His speed was more incredible than even Jason's had been. But unlike most new campers though. Percy blocked it with ease. not even flinching as the sharp blade came closer. a short curved blade. "Fine. not a single drop of fear. not even a small mark was left behind on Percy·s skin. Maybe from that stupid counterfeit camp that Lupa once talked about. But Reyna wasn·t going to back down without a fight. "What?" "Give me the pen. Subsequently. The boy Percy stood his ground. Reyna concluded that he was a spy." Reyna emphasized each word with care. This new demigod was quick to disarm her and push her to the ground. This kid was way too different to even get the chance of being called a Roman camper." she demanded. the blade bounced off. the pen became a large bronze blade. When he uncapped it. Reyna came in with a sharp upper cut. Percy then proceeded to reach into his pocket and pull out a pen. making malice leak into every syllable.

the greatest god ever. So she finally gave in. Father of Romulus and Remus. Then it hit her. and put her sword in the exact spot Percy had his at that moment. Reyna had heard it somewhere before. How could you pay attention when some Venus campers kept mistreating valuable artillery. the founders of Rome. Percy then demanded some answers of his own. "Mars. The boy edged even further. Reyna hadn't been paying attention. Only now did Reyna look around." "Who's your godly parent?" Percy continued. No one ever beaten her in a duel but Jason and a few of the immortals she had decided to take on during her quests." The name brought a look of confusion to Percy·s face. All the groups from the surrounding yards had come to watch. This was never how it went. The old wolf had always said that someone would one day disgrace her publically. but Reyna had never thought the day would come so soon. Reyna glared at all of them. But the . "Who?" Percy asked.She stared at him in shock. ´The name·s Reyna." "Ares?" the kid said. "The Roman god of war. She always gave her victims a few scars. This was not how the interrogation was supposed to go. as well as Lupa and her pack. "What's your name?" Reyna couldn·t help but bite her tongue. Reyna rolled her eyes. They had read about the Greek gods one day in ancient history. It came so naturally that Reyna had to think he used it often. except for Lupa. disarmed them. Reyna could feel the cold metal brush against her skin. The kids of the beauty goddess were always slacking on their weapons cleaning.

Reyna listened as Hazel turned to Percy. and scolded. You don't disobey her. with some strands hanging loose. but not so much that she could be mistaken for a daughter of Mercury. Her thick black hair was held back by a leather tie. or second in command. daughter of Apollo. but this is Reyna. The girl who emerged from the group was pale with sharp features that defined her face. whispered fearfully in Reyna's ear. "Reyna why must you fight everyone as soon as they set foot in camp? I realize you·re upset that Jason's missing.name had still lodged itself in her head. feeling stiff from having held the boy's weight up on her back. thick lashes that gave on the impression that the girl was in a daze. she made a move to grab the boy·s right arm. "I wrote another song. were surrounded by dark. She got it after some struggling. Reyna realized her trainer considered this yet another test for her. my father is also known as Ares." Hazel pointed at Lupa. the boy got up and left. It was then that someone from the crowd stepped forward. Reyna may have been the strongest one in camp. What had Hazel predicted now? . Hazel leaned down as if to help her. Soon she found him sitting on top of her with no clue how she'd gotten there. go see Lupa. Finally. stood over the two fighters. but that gives you no right to beat upon him. our Tribunus Laticlavius. Why wasn't Lupa helping her with these answers? "Yes. If you want an explanation on how things are done here. but Hazel was one of the smartest. "Now. Then. With that. Her eyes." Reyna looked at the ground." she said. Hazel. dark brown in color." Reyna now returned the fearful look. I don't know who you are. Reyna got to her knees slowly.

Hazel ordered the strange boy away. She sighed. she wanted to stop Reyna from bullying the new kid. when Hazel came to Reyna's training ground. while pretending to care for Reyna.Hazel Just a few minutes ago. trying her best to hide her anger. even from the grave. green eyed boy sitting on top of their best fighter. she avoided fights. of course. seemed to be haunting Hazel's every step. since they were considered part of camp life. Nowadays. Hazel had told her about . a crowd had gathered around it and were shouting and hooting comments that Hazel couldn·t even repeat. who. but it made something in her stomach twist to think of fighting ever since the past summer. People would always look away and mutter things about Katie. she immediately saw something was different about this fight. Not wanting the kid to be beaten up too badly. However. So. Then. Usually. often skipping training even though she was in charge of it. Hazel understood that it was necessary for the brutality of beating all newcomers so they'd respect the higher officers. Hazel had pushed her way through the crowd only to find in the center of it all a black haired. Hazel had been in her tent considering the meaning of what she had just written in her TAB* workbook when she heard commotion outside. Hazel ran out to show Reyna and Lupa her new prediction. people ignored Reyna's interrogations. knowing that a new kid had arrived. This time though. Now. (whoever they were?) when she walked out of her tent.

Reyna bent over to brush dirt off her practical work pants. Hazel had to keep herself from coming up with things like that. Not just to sing them a lullaby. . Quickly. table. Gently. it was easy for them to slip in unnoticed. Carefully. balancing her beloved instrument on her knee. But Hazel wasn't fooled. Once inside the hot. Traditionally. a demigod that was possessed by a . tucking a strand of brown hair that had fallen from its tidy bun behind her ear. Hazel had been made the Oracle. A leave in autumn . she sat on the only bench in her tent. . ignoring Reyna·s harsh objection. But when the last one falls . loving the feel of the strings against her fingers. predictions were given as poems. but each chord could heal a certain illness or injury. Reyna was scared out of her mind. Also. He was angry enough with her. Hazel took her toward the healing tent. Hazel grabbed the paper she had written her latest prophetic song on. . She usually kept it there to help the injured campers. muscles flexing as she did so. The gods had stopped communicating with the outside world. but dared not tell her father to stop sending them. Hazel wasn't sure anymore. two chairs. "You'll understand it better if I sing it. Trying to look nonchalant. But since that summer. . Keeping on the pretense that Reyna had been injured. . The tent was plain but at least comfortable. and handed it to her friend. both Reyna and Hazel stood upright. stuffy tent." she informed. Everyone by now knew why. . in one corner was Hazel·s acoustic guitar. Since Hazel's tent was right next to it. and a chest. Hazel picked up her guitar. It had just enough space for a bed.the new song. Hazel had been making them into songs. The good thing though is that Hazel could give the patients a few personal concerts without any annoying complaints« "Where is it?" Reyna demanded. so that just made matters worse. She needed to stop having premonitions. Her entire showed it as it quivered like a tree in a hurricane. Quivers on the breeze . Or at least he had been the last time she saw him.

going no higher than the Hazel's ankles. With a sigh. and was covered in mud. gray instead of the green that normally appeared when an Oracle made a prophecy.visionary spirit. The warrior was crumpling Hazel's precious TAB paper in her hand. She strummed a simple introduction on the guitar that whispered of danger and darkness. Who at the moment is lost And you shall find: An entrance . Hazel started to play. "Okay then. gray eyes. It was the image of a girl. Sadly. and my love. Hazel still remembered what the punishment was for. She had blond hair. the warrior. a cloud rose and formed an image. leaning against the pole that was the tents main support. In the center of the tent. that had been her father's punishment upon her since the past summer. The girl opened her mouth as Hazel started to sing: Earth took me Mud bound me A Titan's screams surround me Mother wants to nurture son But he keeps father from Embracing the mother For if they do the world comes undone Get the prophet. It swirled around. That mud held her in place more firmly than chains ever could. flowed into the tent from the unknown." Reyna demanded. At least until they could find another one. sing it. Smoke.

Finally. eyes filled with tears. She didn't want to say that she soon wouldn't be the Oracle anymore. An awkward silence filled the tent. Hazel wanted to speak. Reyna broke the silence to ask. Then Reyna had to ruin it by saying. "What do you think it means?" "I only understand two things. "Maybe if Katie were here«" But the girl stopped when she saw Hazel look away. Hazel understood more than that." That was a partial lie." Hazel said. we need to find this girl and (two). Those tears were of sadness and self-pity. Would Katie always overshadow her? Maybe a quest was a good thing« . Another thing that had changed when Hazel became Oracle were that the predictions had gotten longer and more confusing than they had once been. we have a quest with her date. but her training dictated that she wait for Reyna to do so. This prediction was by far the longest. but didn't want to say it out loud.A traitor A clear sighted one To take the burden away Water free me Warrior fight she who took me And song unite us all And song unite us all As Hazel played the last chords. It would be too good to be true! It brought warmth to her heart that had been cold so long. the smoke vanished. making the air seem heavy. "(One).

Hazel was supposed to protect Katie that past summer.Katie had been Hazel's half-sister and the former Oracle. . she became the new Oracle of Delphi. but Hazel had failed. As punishment.

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