The Three Fates themselves took Luke's body. One of them looked at me, and my life quite literally flashed before my eyes. I saw myself being lowered into my own grave. It was unnerving, to say the least. I could see why even the mighty Zeus was nervous around them. Hermes said his heartfelt goodbye to his son. As much as I hated Luke, I had to acknowledge that was a hero in the end. I shed real tears as he was carried out of the throne room.
Across the room, Annabeth collapsed to the ground. I was concerned for a moment, but thought nothing of it when Apollo healed her injuries. The next few hours were a blur. I had Zeus light the top of the Empire State Building blue, so my mother and Paul would know I made it out alright. Grover and Thalia stumbled in with a few Cyclopes amid cheers. Grover had stayed behind to try and help Thalia get out from under the statue of Hera. He must have gotten help from a few Cyclopes once the sky bridge reformed. Grover looked terrified, but I just laughed, knowing he'd be alright.
Suddenly, I heard the blast of conch horns. I turned to see Tyson barreling towards me, the whole of Poseidon's army. Once we were all done congratulating each other, the conch shells blasted a second time. In strode Poseidon, in full battle armor.
"Tyson!" he cried. "Well done my son. And Percy," his face turned stern. "I even forgive you for sitting on my throne. You have saved Olympus!" He hugged me, and I'll admit it made me tear up a little. For that one moment, I forgot all about Annabeth. But when he released me, I remembered again.
"Dad—" I started.
"Shhh," he cut me off. "No hero is above fear Percy."
"POSEIDON!" Zeus yelled, leaving me hopeless to correct my father's mistake. "Are you too proud to join us in council?"
"I would be honored, Lord Zeus."
Zeus began congratulating the gods and heroes of Olympus. It was all a blur to me. When Grover became a member of the Council of the Cloven Elders, though, I cheered wildly. Then came Annabeth. She became the Grand Architect for the rebuilding of Olympus. Although happy for her, I looked away when she tried to meet my eyes. I wasn't quite ready to face my emotions yet.
"PERSEUS JACKSON," my father yelled. All talking in the chamber died down. I walked to the center of the room, bowed to Zeus, and knelt at my father's feet.
"Rise, my son." I stood uneasily.
"A great hero must be rewarded," Poseidon started. "Is there anyone here that would deny that my son is deserving?"
"The council agrees," boomed Zeus. "Perseus Jackson, you may have any gift from the Gods."
"Any–" I stammered. "Any gift?"
Zeus nodded. "I believe I know what you will ask. Immortality. Godhood. The greatest gift of all. The Fates will determine your domain, and your power. We have not bestowed this gift on a mortal hero in centuries, but, Perseus Jackson—if you wish it—it will be yours."
"A god?" I asked, stunned.
"Yes, a god," Zeus said, annoyed. "With the full approval of the council of course. All in favor?"
I looked around as every member raised their hand. As I looked around the chamber, my eyes fell upon Annabeth. She wouldn't meet my eyes. I remembered how scared I was when I thought she was going to join Artemis and become a Hunter. I was terrified. I realize now that she will never see me in the same light. I tore my eyes away, and looked at the Three Fates, huddled together. I could avoid everything they had shown to me. Aging, death, the grave. Once upon a time, I would have declined, but no more. The choice is not a hard one.
I turned back to Zeus. "I accept," I said. "I accept your gift of immortality."