A body-wracking cough shook Harry's body. He felt something warm and soft and lumpy underneath him, with a jagged point sticking into his side. Wind ruffled his hair and slapped his face, no doubt tingeing it pink. It if wasn't already from the blood.
Pain coursed through his system in violent waves, making him whimper pathetically. He curled in slightly on himself, taking solace in the warmth underneath him that seemed to be holding him tight. He heard a hot whisper of breath on his ear, and struggled to make out what it was saying.
It felt like water clogging his ears. Pain was still making everything foggy, but taking shallow breaths, he was able to shove some of it into the back of his mind and forget about it. How was he still alive? Luke should have killed him. Luke meant to kill him. Harry wasn't really needed, anyways.
Oh, yeah, Master of Death. That whole...thing. Harry wanted to sigh with despair. He'd never get out of it. He perked his ears again, hearing the tone of voice get more desperate.
"Harry, Harry, please..." The voice whispered, and Harry wondered for a moment if the reason he had had so much trouble hearing it was because it was so low.
Percy? It took all his energy -his body was magically drained from the whole, not dying thing- to crack his eyes open and focus on the figure above him.
His eyes crossed, he was so close. Percy was crouched over him, and Harry noticed he must've been in Percy's arms. Percy's eyes were clenched close, tears slipping out of them and falling onto Harry's shirt. His lips were moving but no words could be heard.
Does he think I'm dead? Harry couldn't move his lips. Why would he think I'm dead? I coughed a minute ago...didn't I? Harry closed his eyes again, feeling his body parts individually. Now that he focused, he could feel Percy's hand, clenching his own for dear life. Harry felt his consciousness slipping as he gently squeezed back. He thought he heard Percy choke for a second before hearing, touch, smell, all his senses faded one by one.
"Percy, you okay? You sound like you're choking on something." Leo asked from in front of him, sleepily rubbing his eyes.
Percy cleared his throat, feeling hope bloom in his chest foolishly, he knew. "Yeah, I'm fine." He murmured, opening his eyes to look down at the body underneath him, at the hand held limply in his own. But Percy could have sworn that just for a second, he had felt pressure back on his hand.
Sorrow coursed through him as he looked at Harry's damaged body. They couldn't give him any nectar or ambrosia unless he was awake, and at this point Percy didn't know if it would help. He was so bloody he couldn't believe he could still feel a faint pulse coming from his soul-mates wrist.
In fact, he thought he felt the connection, the slight string of emotion connecting them snap for the briefest moments, as though it no longer existed. As though Harry no longer existed. Percy held Harry close to himself. He felt as though the black haired boy would disappear if he was to let go of him.
"How long until we get to Camp?" Percy called out, and Nico titled his head back in acknowledgment.
"Just a few more hours. Leo boosted the thing, and I'm pushing it as hard as you can push a giant metal dragon." Nico replied, and Percy slumped against his seat.
He didn't feel like it would be fast enough.
When Harry woke up again he got a frightening flash of Deja Vu. He was in the infirmary, he knew. He recognized the curtain, the walls, the nightstand and the vague smell of bleach. He couldn't help thinking of his first day at Camp, and wondering for a moment if it was somehow all a dream.
Then he felt a pressure on his arm and he looked over, a sob choked in his throat. Percy was there, hair a mess, droll falling out of the corner of his mouth as he used Harry's arm as a pillow. He was rather haggard, with his clothes ripped and dirty, a few numerous cuts littering his sides, his arms, his legs. But he was there. He was right there. Harry could feel him.
A smile cracked Harry's dry lips. He had known, but still, a lingering of doubt had plagued his hopes, his nightmares, his optimism. Harry felt all the slowly building tension leave him, and some lingering pain he hadn't really noticed faded away with a bone-deep sigh.
Harry fell back against the covers, fast asleep in a matter of seconds, one hand resting on Percy's face subconsciously, lightly stroking the other boy's cheek.
Percy woke up to the sound of faint voices. His ears perked, eyes not yet ready to open. It took a moment for his muddled thoughts to make sense of the words.
"I don't know how he's alive, Chiron. The wounds should have killed him, the amount of blood he lost...whatever hurt him certainly wasn't meaning to leave him alive. They all but severed his limbs." A worried voice said hurriedly, and a bone-weary sigh was met as a response.
"Harry is special, more than we first assumed, I believe. I don't particularly believe this has to do with his heritage. But he is alive, and you said he was stable, yes? Yes, well, we must celebrate that he is still with us and that he is no longer in the hands of evil. You did well, Mr. Solace. How is Mr. Jackson?"
"He wouldn't let me tend to his wounds. Wouldn't leave Harry. So I left some nectar and ambrosia on the table after he fell asleep. They weren't bad, it's possible to injure yourself more on the way, but still, I don't like leaving a patient untreated."
Percy could almost hear the fond smile on Chiron's face. He heard a vague sound, and assumed Chiron was clapping Will on the shoulder, or back. "You did well. Rest. I'm sure both you and the boys need it."
"Thank you, Chiron."
The sound of feet and hooves walking away met Percy's ears, and he finally cracked his eyes open. Flesh was right next to his eyes. He looked around without moving his head, which proved difficult. He noticed he'd drooled on Harry's arm on his sleep and mortification overtook him, but then he noticed something else.
Harry's other hand was on his face, as though he had moved and placed it there. Percy felt that was exactly what happened. A wide smile stretched Percy's face as he slowly sat up. Harry's hand fell limply, making Percy wince before he sat up straight and stretched.
Groaning in relief, he looked for the supplies Will had said he'd left. The boy hadn't been lying. Percy took a swig of nectar.
He looked back at Harry, eyes analyzing. How did his soul-mate survive? He tried to think back to when he first met Harry, and something scratched at the surface annoyingly, but Percy shook his head to dispel it.
He stroked Harry's cheek lightly, and his heart stuttered when Harry's head shifted into the touch. A complete look of adoration adorned Percy's face, embarrassingly enough, but he didn't really care at the moment.
A frown came to Harry's face, and a terrified whimper made Percy's heart stop cold.
Percy stood rapidly, hovering over Harry worriedly. Both hands came up to stroke Harry's cheeks soothingly. "Harry, Harry it's okay. I'm here, I'm here, I got you. It's okay, shhhhh..." Percy crooned, relieved when Harry relaxed.
Harry's eyes flickered open. "Percy?" He croaked sleepily, and Percy smiled brightly. Apollo had nothing on him.
"It's me. I'm here." Percy whispered, crouching and holding onto Harry tightly. In a moment, Harry's arms had swung around to wrap around his neck.
"Missed you." Harry said quietly, and Percy felt his heart break.
"Missed you too. What happened? What'd he do to you?" Percy whispered, fearing the answer but needing to know. He had to know how cruelly he was going to slaughter Luke, after all.
"Besides tear me into little bits with a knife, nothing. I'm fine." Harry soothed, and Percy felt his anger, simmering at the surface recede slightly.
Percy frowned. "How did you survive? The wounds should have killed you, Harry." He hated to admit it, but it was true.
Harry turned his head into Percy's neck. Percy could feel him frown into his skin. "I didn't tell you? Coulda sworn I did." He murmured, making Percy shiver from the vibrations.
"No. What, Harry?" Percy pulled away slightly so he was looking Harry in the eyes.
"Can't die. Immortal, like you. Could've sworn I told you before." Percy shook his head, let a exasperated smile come to his face and laid down next to Harry on the small bed, still holding him close.
"Why did he grab you? What's he planning?" Percy asked after a moment of comfortable silence, both basking in the others presence.
"I don't know, Percy. He didn't tell me anything. I wasn't even a crucial part, you saw what he did to me."Harry said, feeling stupidly useless. Percy petted his hair, making shushing noises as he sense Harry's despair.
"It's alright. It isn't your fault, Harry." Percy whispered, and with a faint smile Harry cuddled into Percy, savoring the body heat. Percy was almost asleep when he murmured the words into Harry's temple.
"I love you." He whispered, voice very low. Harry was asleep, he was sure, so he knew he was safe to speak the words that had been rattling inside him for months.
"Love you too." He felt the words more than heard them, Harry's lips pressed lightly against his neck.
Percy felt he was actually glowing as he fell asleep, the smile on his face was so big he thought it may crack.
They took up several hours later to pained screaming and a violent crash.
Both Harry and Percy jolted upright in the hospital bed, the loud screams making them wince. They shared a single, fearful glance before they both jumped out of bed.
Percy was brandishing Riptide in a second, whilst Harry summoned his wand as he walked. It flew into his hand after about five seconds. He was at the door. Percy glanced at him in worry.
"You don't have your weap-"
"I don't need it."
Harry leaped over the banister and onto the ground, landing perfectly. His wand felt amazing in his hand, the wood humming and growing hot in it's excitement at being used for the first time in months. Harry cackled and a wicked smile crossed his face as he shot out beam after beam of light. He hadn't let go of any harmful spells yet, he was just casting some various protections spells. Once he saw the ice littering everything, he cast heat charms, warming charms, and charms against ice to help preserve the camp.
He shot light after light, into the sky. There was one to protect the campers. There was another spell to keep the Goddess from freezing the water. Harry then ran toward the Goddess, planning to fight. But then a ball of fire knocked her down, and a wave of ice shot from her fingers.
Harry kept running. He had cast spells that would protect him.
But as the wave connected with his body, and he was knocked back violently, he realized. He had used spells to protect the camp and the other campers. He hadn't used any to protect himself. Harry's world went black as all his senses could understand was cold.
Harry hopped over the banister of the infirmary, landing gracefully. Percy followed right behind him, thinking Harry was insane. That was, until he heard a string of latin words leave Harry's mouth, and a large beam of light shoot out of something in Harry's hand and at the monster that was attacking.
Percy blinked once in shock, then decided to think about it later. He had to focus on the monster.
Speaking of the monster.
Percy's footsteps stuttered, looking at the damage he just realized he was passing, and the person who was causing it. It was a single, seven foot tall woman with a flowing floor length, pale blue dress, hair done in a braid over her shoulder, her skin frosty and icicles decorating her...everything.
He had no idea who she was. But by the various cabins and structures covered in ice, he would assume she was an ice Goddess. He ran forward, nonetheless, and not a moment later Leo joined him.
"Khione." Leo panted from next to him. Percy glanced at him for more of an explanation. "Minor ice Goddess. Daughter of Boreas or something, I think. Doesn't like fire." At this, he cackled, even though he was running.
All Percy saw in the next instant was a giant, flaming, laughing Latino jump into the heart of battle, attacking the Goddess straight on.
Percy looked behind him to make sure he hadn't lost Harry while talking to the Latino.
He had lost Harry.
Percy cursed but continued on. As he got closer he realized it wasn't just the Goddess, but she had vicious little forms of white mist swirling around her that would lash out at anything that got too close. He saw a Demi-God with an icicle in his shoulder, hopefully just unconscious. He soon passed another with one through her heart. Fighting off a sob, Percy continued. Even as she was attacked from all sides, with different types of attacks that ranged from dropping from the trees above her to launching javelins at her or flat out throwing daggers, she managed to evade most everything.
Leo was the only one that was able to get close enough. His fire melted the white wisps as they came near him, and any icicle that was launched at him was melted before it could make contact.
Percy fought back a laugh as Leo jumped on her from behind. She shrieked, a wave of ice spreading out from her in all directions, freezing trees and plants outside the arch, but somehow not affecting the campers who hadn't ducked fast enough or the cabins.
Leo knocked her down, and Percy went in. He charged, and raised Riptide. He stabbed his sword through her flailing arm, pinning it to the ground. She shrieked, but Percy couldn't really tell it if was from the sword or from the constant intense heat of a thousand degree Latino Elf.
The other campers surged forward once they realized she couldn't attack them anymore, all her wisps had vanished attacking Leo, and she was pinned to the ground with various weapons, knives, daggers, swords, electrical spears ("Take that you frosty bitch!"), and regular spears.
The Goddess was immobile besides a slight, labored rise and fall to her chest. Golden ichor dripped down into the ground, and ice spread in a slippery ring around her. Leo finally backed off, fire diminishing, and the campers looked at the gruesome sight with winces.
"I almost feel guilty for her." Someone said. Percy glanced back, recognizing Travis Stoll, who didn't look sorry at all. Percy thought he remembered Travis and Conner hanging out with that camper will the icicle through his shoulder, and turned back around.
"She isn't moving. But still, leave at least five to watch over her, with weapons." Percy called out. "Nico, see if you can help any of the dead, if there are any. Will, run to the infirmary, gather anyone else who can help, make sure there's enough space. Jason, Annabeth, Piper, Katie, Frank, Hazel, watch over her. Alyssa, Lou Ellen, make sure they have something to defend themselves with. Flame throwers would be useful. Stole's, help get the campers back to the infirmary." He looked across everyone, who nodded. "Leo, you're coming with me to see if we can defrost anything. If anyone can do it it's us." Percy huffed, and Leo nodded in understanding.
"Shouldn't I stay with her?" Leo questioned. Percy looked back at the bleeding Goddess behind him.
"I think she's okay for awhile." Percy said. Leo nodded and they walked away. Percy searched frantically with his eyes for Harry, but couldn't see him anywhere. He and Leo walked throughout the camp, noticing that there was minimal frost-damaged to the camp, thankfully. Leo was able to melt the ice one the statues and metal things, but didn't go near the wooden cabins. They decided to let those sit. They'd melt soon.
Then they came across a huge block of ice. Percy rushed over to it, noticing it had a vaguely humanoid outline. His heart leapt into his chest as he fell to his knees in front of it.
"Holy...no, no, no, shit, shit, no way." He whispered, reaching out a hand to touch the ice but pulling it away quickly before it made contact.
Harry was trapped within. Percy estimated a good two or three inches surrounding him. His eyes were closed, face expression scared. He was slightly sprawled, as though he had landed on his back and had then been frozen.
"Leo, melt it as much as you can, please, you have to." Percy begged, seeing the doubt in Leo's eyes.
"Percy, I'll hurt hi-"
"No you won't! You don't have to unfreeze him completely, please just do what you can. Please, Leo. He's my Soul-Mate, I need him." Whimpering, Percy reached out to touch the ice.
He felt his heart wrenching in his chest, beating faster and faster-or was it beating slower and slower, in time to Harry's heart beat?
"He's dying, I can feel it. Please."
Leo looked horribly torn, the horror at Percy losing his Soul-Mate fighting at his fear of hurting Harry.
Finally, Leo figured he had to try. Otherwise Harry would die anyway. He got to his knees, closed his eyes, and put his hands on the ice, heating them to the point of being like embers, not aflame but hotter than a flame would be.
Percy reluctantly backed up. Leo's hands glided over the ice, and Percy spent several minutes in silence as campers passed. Why had it only affect Harry? Why hadn't anyone else been hurt like this? Or had they, and Percy just hadn't come across them yet? Would they be dead by the time he found them?
Leo finally pulled away. "His skin is right there, I can't go any further without melting his skin off." Leo whispered. "I'm sorry." He backed away slowly, shame that he couldn't do more filling him like a weight, pushing on his shoulders heavily.
Percy waved him off and scooted up close to Harry, running his hands over the slippery layer that was hardly a centimeter covering Harry's body. Percy closed his eyes, concentrating, and let all his emotions flow out.
His adoration, his nervousness whenever he was around Harry, his frustration for not manning up earlier and confessing to Harry, his terror and sorrow and shame from when Harry got captured, the relief he had felt when he finally had Harry safely back in his arms, the absolute horror and fury and hopelessness that had overtaken him just moments ago, he channeled it all, creating a focal point of power as sweat beaded down his brow.
He held on tightly to Harry, feeling as his pants and shirt got soaked whilst he changed the water to a different state of matter. He felt Harry limbs relaxed from their frozen positions, felt his hair moving around in his fingers as it was freed.
He kept concentrating until he couldn't feel any cold left on Harry at all. Percy's eyes fluttered open from exhaustion, letting his head dangle as he looked down.
Harry was breathing steadily, the rise and fall of his chest apparent. Percy moved to feel his pulse. It was slower than he was comfortable with, but it was getting steadily faster.
Percy slumped in relief, leaning against a nearby rock with Harry cuddled to his frame. "He'll be okay." Percy whispered. He could already feel the bond strengthening, working overtime to stay attached after almost breaking moments before.
He saw Leo sag in relief out of his peripheral vision. "Thank the Gods. You going to be okay?"
"Yeah." Nodding, Leo got up and walked away. Percy slumped further, brushing the hair out of Harry's eyes.
He was startled when they started to open. Fluttering weakly, they eyelids struggled to open. Percy's hand ran his hand through Harry's locks gently in encouragement.
"Percy?" Harry whispered, finally managing to open his eyes. The former nodded, an overjoyed smile lighting up his face.
"Don't let me do that again."
"I don't plan to."
The two boys didn't pay any attention to anything besides each other as Percy leaned down to gently kiss Harry on the lips.