Ees a new story! YAAASS! It's actually happening. I finally finished the outline for this little plot bunny that's bee screwing around in my brain since Christmas. It only took me seven months. :)
Music is 'I Lived' and 'What You Wanted (Acoustic)' by OneRepublic.
Disclaimer: I do not own Percy Jackson and the Olympians. I only own this plot.
"Is that the last of them?" Annabeth asked, wiping her brow with the back of her hand after she set the last cardboard box in the trunk of her Subaru.
"Yep," Percy said as he slammed the back door closed, wiping the dust that had transferred from the car to his hands onto his jeans. "We are done packing!" he exclaimed, giving his best friend a high-five.
"At least for today," Annabeth corrected, leaning against the window of the car. The summer sun was only just coming up, but it was already becoming hot and humid as usual for the late July weather. "We'll still have to unpack and pack our apartment when we get-"
Percy threw an arm around her, shushing her. "Don't ruin the moment with your wisdom, Wise Girl."
She shot him a look and shoved his arm from her shoulder.
Frederick Chase jogged down the driveway, his thinning blond hair flying behind him. He stopped in front of them with a forced smile on his face. "All done, then?" he asked.
"Uh huh," Annabeth answered vaguely.
"The boys are still asleep," he told her. "I figured it would be best that they didn't say goodbye." He ran a hand through his hair, his brown eyes looking at the ground. "They wouldn't have let you leave." He voice sounded strained.
Annabeth sighed, knowing that he overly emotional father was doomed to act like this. She wrapped her arms around him. "Don't worry, Dad. Percy and I are going to be back for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It's only a couple of months, not even a year."
Her father laughed, his chest vibrating, and he pulled away. "I know, I know. It's just… College, you know? I can't believe my baby girl is going to college. And all the way across the country." He grabbed her shoulders. "Annabeth, you got accepted into NYU. Don't you know how amazing that is?"
She laughed and pushed his hands off of her shoulders. "I know, Dad. You've only been telling me that since I got accepted, like, six months ago."
"I know, I know," Frederick brushed off. "I'm just so proud of you."
"I know you are," she said simply, shrugging.
"Percy!" a voice interrupted. Annabeth saw an older woman with long, wavy brown hair flying behind her, running across the lawn of her neighbor's yard in an oversized sweater and pajama bottoms. She recognized her as Sally Jackson, Percy's mother.
Sally threw herself into the arms of her son, giving him a long hug, before pulling away and slapping his arm lightly. "You were supposed to wake me up when you did!" she exclaimed, giving her son a sharp look.
Percy had the decency to look abashed. "I'm sorry, Mom. I was going to, but I woke up at 5:30. I didn't want to wake you up so early."
Mrs. Jackson shook her head, rolling her eyes. "I understand the intention, but, please, honey, I wanted to help you pack. I was scared you had left without saying goodbye." She looked at the car full to the roof of cardboard boxes, duffel bags and suitcases. "Though, it seems that you and Annabeth got it done fast enough." She flashed Annabeth a smile that she quickly returned.
Percy sighed, ruffling his hair with one hand and sticking the other in his pocket. "I'm sorry, Mom."
Sally rolled her aqua eyes, patting him on the cheek. "Just be safe."
"Of course I will," Percy scoffed, pulling Annabeth to his side. "I mean, I've got Annabeth with me. How could anything go wrong when she's planned it all out?"
Annabeth shoved him. "Shut up," she retaliated.
Sally shook her head fondly. "How on earth you two get from little, itty bitty six-year-olds, to the mature, responsible adults you are." She wiped a stray tear from her eye. "I'm just so proud of you two."
"Oh, Sally," Annabeth said and brought her in for a hug. Annabeth made eye contact with Percy and motioned for him to join, which he promptly did. They stood there, Sally sniffing and Annabeth smiling sadly and Percy's arms big enough to wrap themselves around his two favourite girls.
Sally pulled back, wiping her reddened blue eyes on the sleeve of her sweater. She swallowed the tears that were sure to come when the pair started their journey across the country.
"Right, okay," she began. "Please be safe. I'm serious. Stick together and don't wander off on your own in strange cities. Use your GPS to find your hotels; I've booked them for you, here's a list-" She handed them a piece of paper. "-But most of all-" Sally looked at the two of them on the eyes, firmly but kindly. "-don't let anything come between you two."
"Mom-" Percy interrupted with a whine.
"No, I'm dead serious, Percy. You're going to be in a car, all alone for a good week, and that can cause tension. And you know how you two can get." She smiled at them sadly. "I don't want you guys to ruin your friendship over something stupid, okay?"
"Okay," Annabeth agreed. "I couldn't live without this Seaweed Brain anyway," she said fondly and patted Percy on the head. He swatted her hand away and stuck his tongue out at her.
"Sally's right, you know," Frederick put in. "As per usual, of course." Sally laughed and nudged the man she had known for years. "You guys butt heads over the stupidest things. Don't let a stupid thing ruin what you've got going."
The sun was could clearly be seen in the East now. Its brilliant rays cast golden beams of light across the houses of their suburban neighborhood. Percy glanced over at his best friend and was once again struck at how amazing her hair looked when bathed in the golden, buttery light; it looked like spun gold, twisted into the most delicate of braids.
He shook his head, snapping himself out of his reverie.
"We should probably get going," he said, coughing. "We've got a seven hour drive ahead of us, and I want to get there before supper."
Annabeth nodded. "Yeah, we really should." She gave her father one last hug, wrapping her arms around his thin frame and trying to memorize his scent for when she got homesick; the faint smell of cologne, old paper and the ocean air. She closed her eyes, letting a few tears leak out onto her cheeks. "I'm going to miss you," she mumbled.
"I'll miss you too, sport," he said. "Oh, the places you will go."
She pulled back and wiped her eyes on the back of her hand. "Say goodbye to the terrible twins for me?"
He smiled at her sadly, his brown eyes prickling. "Of course. I'll say goodbye to Helen for you as well."
Annabeth nodded, swallowing the lump in her throat. She was really doing this; she was moving away to go to her dream college. She was leaving her childhood behind to run away with her best friend. She was going to become an architect. That was mildly terrifying.
And with that thought, she hopped into the driver's side of her car and slammed the door shut.
Percy pulled away from his mother's tight embrace.
"Okay, mom," he mumbled, irritated by how thick his voice sounded. "I have to go. Annabeth's waiting and…" He trailed off, his eyes stinging as he noticed the tears running down his mother's cheeks.
"No, no, no, mom. Mom, don't cry. If you cry then I'm going to cry and I'm going to be a hot mess for the rest of the day and I'll chicken out and just end up living in your basement for the rest of my life," he rambled and embraced her again, burying his face in her hair. He had long since grown taller than her, but he still managed to hug his mother like he was a little boy and could still fit in her lap.
"I'm so proud you, Perce. You're going to do great things," she said and pulled away, touching his cheek with her wrinkled hand. "Now, you'd better get in the car or Annabeth is going to chew you out."
"Goodbye, Mom," Percy said. "I love you."
"I love you, too," she whispered as his door slammed shut and her baby boy drove off into the distance.
"Wow," Annabeth murmured. It had been silent in the car for about five minutes. "We actually just did that."
Percy laughed, leaning his head against the headrest of his seat. "I know… I can't believe we just left our childhood behind. Christ, that's weird to think about."
"I mean, think about it. On our driver's licenses, it won't say we're from 2230 Bay Road anymore. It'll be from New York." Annabeth shook her head, grinning in disbelief.
It was silent once again. The only sound was the engine of the car and the slow breathing of the two best friends. Percy leaned over and turned on the radio. Some top 40 tune began quietly form the speakers.
"Do you want to plug in my phone?" Annabeth asked, shifting and pulling her phone from her back pocket of her jean shorts.
"Sure," Percy shrugged. Her grabbed the Smartphone and plugged it into the car. He quickly typed in Annabeth's password (0818, his birthday) and began scrolling through her music. "Do you have any requests, milady?"
"Mmm… Just put my drive playlist on shuffle," Annabeth decided and grinned as the indie music filled her car.
She hummed along quietly, and turned down one of the main roads of San Fransisco. "Do you want to grab some breakfast?"
"Yeah, sure, I could eat." Percy leaned his head on the window and grinned. "We are officially moved out of our homes. We have no rules. We could, like, I dunno, smoke and drink all we want and no one would kick us out of our house. Because it's our house."
Annabeth shot him a look. "But we won't because that would be stupid." She smiled at him to show she meant no harm and was only teasing. "But I get your meaning. We have no ties anymore… Frick, that's weird."
"But just a little awesome," Percy grinned.
They pulled into a McDonald's drive thru and turned down the music. Glancing at Annabeth's phone, Percy realized it was only 7:30 in the morning. He relaxed; they had time.
"Hello, welcome to McDonald's, can I take your order?" came a voice from the speaker.
"Hi, can I get two BLT bagels and two coffees, please," Annabeth called into the speaker and fishing her wallet from her pocket. Percy put his hand on her arm and handed her a twenty-dollar bill.
"Is that all?" the voice asked. It was clear this person was female and from another country, due to the accent that laced each of their words exotically.
"Yep," Annabeth called, fiddling with the bill in her hands.
"Okay, that'll be ten-fifty-six at the next window."
They pulled up to the next window and paid for their meals.
As they pulled onto the California highway, munching on their bagels and slurping their still-too-hot coffee, Annabeth glanced at her best friend. He looked so at peace with himself, leaning against the window, coffee in hand and his lips quirked up in a smile. She smiled to herself and tried to focus on the road, not how lovely Percy looked with the sun reflecting in his raven-coloured locks and his eyes shining as they mouthed the words to one of his favourite songs.
"Let's make a toast," Percy declared, sitting upright and facing her.
"To what?" Annabeth asked, turning down the music once more so she could hear what he was trying to say.
He grinned. "To us, and to the next chapter of this adventure called life. And that I get to spend it with you, best friend, because there is no one I would rather embark on this adventure with."
"To us," Annabeth agreed, and they touched coffee cups.
"Huzzah!" Percy cried, and Annabeth laughed.
Well? What do you think? Tell me in a review! (If you had time to read this, you had time to review. That's just something to live by. And I'm working on living by that policy myself.)
I'd assume that this story will be about 15-25 ch., depending on how it goes and how detailed I want to be, etc.
Thanks for reading! The second chapter should be up soon!