In Cabin One, sitting on the plush blue beds and having Hippie Zeus's face staring down at them gives an odd sort of feeling to both of its occupants.

Almost as if they could forget. Almost.

And out of the blue, the girl with the feathers in her hair and the color-changing kaleidoscope eyes asks the boy, "Do you love me?"

The sudden question takes the boy by surprise because really they've just been staring at the wall and craning their necks in odd ways to look at the stars out the window, and it gives the whole atmosphere a kind of lull. It makes them feel comfortable and normal, like they've just been talking and smiling and watching cheesy movies and cringing together.

So he replies, "Hmm?" because he's still in that lull they have together.

Piper repeats her question. "Do you? Love me?"

And Jason smiles in that easy way he does. "Of course," he answers in that easy tone, almost easier than his smile.

They both know he's lying but it's just that lull they've got that's keeping them trapped in the moment. That sense of security they've got with each other—they're best friends, good friends, and that's all they'll ever be. Because they're both well aware of the wistful looks he throws Reyna's way when she's around.

Oh, yes, they both know he's lying. And they both hate it so much.

But they're friends. And they're both going to pretend they aren't lying. They're both going to pretend it's real.

She's definitely lying too when she returns his smile with an "I love you too, darling," and gives him a short, affectionate peck on the lips.

It's not real. But they can pretend it is, because that's what they do.


A/N: broke my own heart writing this. jiper angst for you