Naruto/Percy Jackson Crossover
Dining With Divinity
Lifting the ladle from the pot, Hestia brought it halfway to her lips when she stopped as a flash of yellow appeared out of the corner of her eye. After years of seeing the technique used, she recognised the user instantly, though was understandably confused why he was home so early. Turning to face him, she found he wasn't alone with Sally stood by his side along with Melinoe, though the mortal woman looked visibly confused as well as her niece. Her blonde bestie, however, looked visibly irritated.
"What's going on? It's far too early for you to be home?" She asked, What about the customers.
"I'm equally as confused," Sally admitted, "One minute I'm serving customers, and the next thing I know, Naruto is ushering them out of the building and locking all the doors. It was all very sudden. He hasn't told me what's going on."
"I wouldn't mind an answer myself. You made me spill coffee down the front of my apron." She motioned to her apron with her hand rather dramatically. None of their questions got answered right away, though the three curiously followed him as he peeked his head into the Living Room. Inside, Thalia and Percy were present, with Percy drawing a blue dinosaur while Thalia watched television.
That was good.
"Naruto, what's going on?"
The blonde shinobi turned to look at Hestia, "You haven't felt a new power signature arrive in New York recently?" He looked at Melinoe and asked the same question.
Melinoe shook her head, and Hestia replied with a resounding, "No. Nothing out of the ordinary."
Beneath his breath, they heard him curse.
"Damn. He's gotten better at hiding his energy."
Naruto sighed and looked at Hestia, "Thor is in New York. He stopped by the Fox's Den about ten minutes ago, but I managed to throw him in a trash can and teleport him to Switzerland. It should get him out of our hair for a little while."
Hearing the God of Thunder's name, Hestia's eyes initially widened before her face dropped and a rare scowl appeared, "Oh joy."
"Back up a moment!" Melinoe put her hands up, a look of panic on her face, "What do you mean Thor's in New York!? I thought Gods from other pantheons weren't meant to trespass on each other's turf!?" The last thing Meinoe wanted to witness was the famed God of Thunder duking it out with Gods of her pantheon, "Why is he here!? And you put him in a bin!? In Switzerland!?"
"I have an idea why he's here." The tone of disapproval was evident in Hestia's voice. So much so she almost sounded like Hera, "He's here because he wants a fight, doesn't he?"
Naruto nodded and sighed, "Yeah." The next thing he knew, he felt Hestia slapping his arm repeatedly, "Ow! Quit it!"
"I told you centuries ago it was a bad idea to let Thor goad you into a fight, but you had to let him get under your skin!" It went on for a few more seconds before Hestia relented, though her stern expression didn't leave, "Does he know this address?"
"I don't think so. To be honest, I was more focused on getting him out of the city than asking twenty questions. Thor isn't the subtle kind, and I don't need your brother or any of the others knowing he's in the city without the permission of Olympus."
"Hold on! Hold on!" The three immortals turned and looked towards Sally, whose arms were in the air, a look of panic and disbelief written all over her face, "Thor!? As in the Norse God of Thunder!? Son of Odin and Frigga. An Aesir God!?"
"Do you know anyone else by that name?" Melinoe asked, leaning against the wall with her arms crossed.
"B-But they're real too! I thought it was only the Greeks that were real!"
The Goddess of Ghosts turned her head to look at the older pair with an eyebrow raised, "You never told her about the other pantheons?"
"We may have skipped over a few details," Naruto admitted, rubbing the back of his neck.
"It was a conversation we were going to have for a later date," Hestia revealed, "Given New York is under Olympian jurisdiction, the gods from other pantheons have to inform us when they'll be stopping by. It doesn't happen often, so we didn't see the need for that topic to be brought up yet. Then again, we didn't take Thor's idiocy into account."
"Do you know him well?" Melinoe asked, but quickly when silent at the irritated aura she could feel around her. It didn't look like the Goddess of the Hearth was the biggest fan of the Norse God of Thunder.
"Aunt Hestia!" They all heard and watched as Thalia appeared through the doorway. The nine-year-old stopped and stared at the four adults huddled together in the hallway, "Huh? Uncle, when did you get back? I didn't hear you get home." The tv remote was still in her hand, and behind her, Percy followed after his cousin. A big smile lit his face when he spotted Sally and was quickly moved around the older demigod and clutch his mother's legs.
Sally smiled, picking him up and placing him on her hip, "Hello, Percy." Her face looked a little pale. She tried not to give away that anything was wrong and put on a brave face for the kids.
"We just got back," Naruto replied to Thalia's question, "Is something the matter?"
"There's some weird guy outside running up and down the street waving a hammer around," Thalia revealed, making the four adults look at each other, "He keeps shouting to come out and fight. Who do you think he's talking to?"
"Oh, boy," Naruto muttered before he and the girls all made their way to the window and looked outside to the front of the street. Just as Thalia said, there was Thor in the middle of the street. The God of Thunder was looking a little grubbier than usual, likely on account of being shoved in a bin and left on a mountain in Switzerland, and didn't appear happy that Naruto had duped him.
"Come out and face me! Face the might of Thunder!" He bellowed. People walking past hurried past the scene as quickly as they could. Cars passing nearby slowed down to get a view of his wild actions, though one found themselves an unlucky victim of Thor as the red-haired god climbed atop and stood on the bonnet of the vehicle, "Let us duel to Helheim and back!"
"That's Thor!" Sally asked, staring intently at the man.
Naruto sighed, "Yeah, that's him."
"I always pictured someone...blonder." She tilted her head, "Though, physically, he's everything else I imagined. He's as big as Poseidon."
Melinoe hummed with a hint of disapproval, "I can't say I've ever met the guy before, but he acts is exactly how my father described him."
"Hades met him?"
"Centuries ago, though I don't think Thor left a good impression on him. Then again, who does when it comes to my father."
There was a scream outside, and everyone winced as Thor lifted his hammer and tapped the bonnet of the car with his hammer. The effect was instant, with the front half of the car suddenly buckling under the force behind it and became little more than a crushed piece of debris pancaked on the road. The driver said nothing except scream as he stumbled out of the car and ran in the other direction.
"Oh, geez." Naruto ran a hand over his face, annoyance growing as the God of Thunder continued making a scene. The last thing they needed was someone calling the police. That would make matters far worse, "I should probably go out and sort this out. Even if this going to be a real pain in my ass." He turned away from the window before voicing his surprise when he noticed someone was missing, "Hestia?"
Melinoe and Sally both looked at where the Goddess of the Hearth had been standing moments ago before everyone heard the front door open. The three of them turned back to the window and watched as the eldest member of the Olympian family descended the steps and made her way over to Thor. The blonde couldn't see her face, but judging by the way she was walking, almost like a female terminator zeroing on their target, she wasn't happy. Eventually, they all saw Thor turn in her direction, and the man had the decency to stop his destruction and appear pleased by her presence. He threw his arms in the air and jumped beside her. However, before he could say a word, Naruto, Melinoe and Sally all winced as the right hand of Hestia lit up in fire and slapped the larger immortal in the cheek. The connection of palm to face was loud, and the God of Thunder had the decency to stumble back a step before finding Hestia's hand locked around his ear and dragged back to the house.
"Ouch. That ha to sting." Melinoe muttered, looking in disbelief that the kind and sweet Hestia had it in her to slap someone like Thor. Who knew she had it in her?
"Unhand me! Goddess of the Hearth you may be, but I am the mighty Thor!"
"Oh, shut up, you Bufoon! Before you cause any more damage!" Footsteps reappeared in the hallway as the front door closed. The voices drew the attention of the two demigods, who turned and looked at the hallway. Thalia made to head out and find out what was going on, but instead found herself being lifted by Naruto by the scruff of her neck and deposited back onto the couch, "Hey!"
"Stay here, Thalia. Aunt Hestia and I need to have words with an old friend of ours." Closing the door behind them, he made a beeline for the kitchen and was treated to the sight of Hestia still with her hand locked around the God of Thunder's ear and pushing him into a chair.
"Unhand me, woman! One does not pinch the ear of the Son of Odin, less they wish to feel my wrath!" When the blonde walked into the kitchen, the Aesir's annoyance appeared to leave him, excitement washing over his face, "AHAH! My friend! That was a sneaky trick you pulled but dropping me on a mountain is not something I haven't survived before! Come, let us battle!"
Though he tried to stand up, the larger man found himself releasing a high-pitched squeal as Hestia twisted his ear in a position it wasn't meant to go.
"What did I just tell you!?" Hestia barked back. It was uncommon to see Hestia get riled up, but Thor had a knack of doing so to calmer immortals.
Naruto sighed, rubbing his forehead with his palm, "Look, Thor. It's good to see you, but I'm not fighting you. New York isn't exactly a place built for a battle like ours. A bit of warning would have been nice too that you were coming."
"But my friend! Our battles are legendary! When our fists collide, the very foundations of the Nine Realms shake in anticipation. You can't tell me you don't wish to feel that again."
Naruto made a face and shook his head, "Sorry, but I'm not interested. I only fight when I have to. Not to satisfy the whims of a God who constantly loses his hammer, which also happens to be one of the most powerful weapons in all creation."
Like a child, Thor let out a whine and blew a raspberry, "You're no fun. I came all this way expecting you to indulge me. This is incredibly disappointing." Thor crossed his arms and winced as the tightness around his ear remained, "Please let go of my ear." He turned and looked up at the goddess, "I'll behave." There was a glumness to his voice.
"Do you promise not to cause total mayhem and not pick a fight?"
"Yes, yes, I promise." The hand left his ear, and he brought his own up to gentle soothe it, "I really can't tempt you in a bout of fisticuffs?"
"Nope, tough luck. Go pick a fight with a giant, or something."
"We both know they're not nearly as fun."
"Then go pick a fight with a fire giant. Those guys are always looking for a good fight. That's right up your alley."
"This is the God of Thunder?" Sally asked, leaning over and whispering in Melinoe's ear, "He's not exactly what I pictured. Are all Gods from the Norse Pantheon so.."
"Idiotic? Who's knows. We mostly keep to ourselves. Gods don't normally mingle with other pantheons unless it's strictly business." She looked at Thor and watched in distaste as he picked something out of his ear, "This one though, he's an idiot of the highest order," Melinoe replied, appearing less than impressed at the Norse god. Her father's description of the man was on point. No wonder he didn't have a good thing to say about him.
Hearing their voices, Thor looked past Naruto and Hestia and found the younger goddess and the mortal woman staring at him. His eyebrows shot up and Naruto and Hestia watched as he hung his hammer back on his waist and stepped forward. Sally barely had a moment to react before she found herself under Thor's gaze, the God towering over her and placing his arm above her as he leaned on the wall. A tiny smirk was on his face.
"So, tell me, mortal. Aside from being drop-dead gorgeous, what do you do for a living? And do you by chance like the gun show?" The muscles in his arms flexed, showing off his powerful arms, "How about we get out of here, and I'll show you how the God of Thunder treats a woman."
"Oh, gods." Melinoe wanted to gag, and the expressions on Naruto and Hestia's faces weren't any better. Sally didn't appear to know what to do with her face flushed from his comments and found herself stepping back in surprise as the Goddess of Ghosts got between them, "Back off. She's not interested, Sparkplug!."
"Who are you?" He looked Melinoe up and down, "I don't recognise you though you smell of the Underworld." He rubbed his chin, "Someone connected to that old fart, Hades, I assume? You're as pale as he is, though you're much better looking." He shrugged, before saying, "I suppose you can come too. I have energy plenty for both of yo-"
Behind him, a hand wrapped in flames grabbed his ear and yanked him away and made the God of Thunder bellow in agony as he was forced back into the chair. Hestia stood behind him, looking positively wrathful at the comments he made to the point where Naruto had to stand behind her and keep her from melting Thor's face off.
"You really can't help putting your foot in your mouth, can you?" Naruto muttered, "They're not interested, so don't flirt with them. That was also the cheesiest pick-up line I've heard in years. I think every Love Goddess in existence would be hunched over in agony."
"I thought it was pretty good," Thor whined. It took a minute for Naruto to calm Hestia down before she finally let go of Thor, though the man's ear was red all over with burns, "Your grip is still like an iron claw after all these centuries, Hestia. Would you smile if I said it was good to see you?"
"Oh. Well, no matter." He turned and looked at Naruto, "So, really no battle?"
Naruto shook his head, "Afraid not."
Thor visibly deflated but ended up shrugging his shoulder, "Oh, well. Maybe in another century." Thor stood up back up, idly keeping watch of Hestia to ensure she didn't grab him by the ear again. He extended his hand towards the blonde, and after a moment of hesitation, Naruto shook it, "It's been a long time, my friend."
"You haven't visited Asgard or Vanaheim in centuries. I know many in my pantheon would love to see you again." Thor nudged his elbow into the blonde, "Lady Freya always asks for you. She says she misses your presence in her halls."
"I'm sure she does." Naruto rolled his eyes and caught Melinoe looking at him, "What?"
"You've been to Asgard and Vanaheim?" She asked, looking visibly surprised at this new piece of information, "And you know Freya? When were you going to share that with the rest of the class?"
Naruto shrugged, "Now, I guess." Honestly, he hadn't thought to mention it. The two pantheons tended to stay out of each other's way, although he heard a few confrontations and interactions occurred over the years. The only Greek God who had any interaction with them was Hestia, and that was through him, "I lived there for a century. Vanaheim, I mean, but I visited Asgard on occasion."
Melinoe let her jaw drop while turning to look at Sally, "This guy! Can you believe him!"
Sally didn't appear to be baffled by the revelation, "I mean, is it that surprising?" She looked at the blonde, "Vanaheim is the Vanir version of heaven, right?" She didn't know much about Norse mythology, but she knew some things. Deciding to learn all she could about the Greek Pantheon after finding out one of its gods knocked her up, she dove deep into the lore surrounding them. Sometimes her mind wandered and she wondered if any of the other pantheons existed too. It appears she was correct, "What's Freya like?"
"Freya? She's nice enough. We got on well, though she wasn't very pleased when I chose to leave and return to earth." Naruto scratched the back of his head, "I haven't really heard much from her since then."
"Freya can be quite petty. She reminds me of your Love Goddess, whom I've never had the pleasure of meeting. She doesn't take people rejecting her very well." Thor added.
"At least, she's not as persistent as Aphrodite is," Hestia muttered from Naruto's side. Honestly, the Olympian Goddess of Love didn't understand the concept of being rejected.
"Yeah, tell me about it." He was thankful he hadn't had a run-in with the Love Goddess since the pantheon got barred from visiting. He was well aware of her sneaking into his home and his bedroom but Hestia dealt with her accordingly, "Since you're here, do me a favour and don't destroy anything."
"Do you not trust me, my old friend?"
"Is that a serious question?"
Before Thor could answer, the door to the kitchen swung open, with Thalia walking inside to join the rest of the adults. The little girl was rather confused with everything that was going on. She could hear raised voices coming from the kitchen and decided to investigate.
"Uncle? Auntie? What's going on?" She asked and found herself staring up at the large red-haired man who'd been shouting fighting words in the street. Thalia had never seen someone so massive before! He was even bigger than her uncle!
The God of Thunder's attention turned from the adult to the young girl and started smelling the air. A scent he was familiar with floated through the air, one he recognised as the scent of the ozone. He'd smelled it faintly when he got dragged into the house by Hestia, but it was overwhelming when the girl appeared, attacking his sense of smell. So, she was the source of it!
He pointed towards Thalia in a rather dramatic fashion, "A child of Zeus!" He looked over at Naruto again, "Are you taking in more strays, my friend?"
"Don't call her a stray. Don't forget, the last demigod I took care of was your daughter."
"And I am forever grateful!" He sniffed the air and looked at the stove, "Do I smell food? Are you cooking?"
Naruto sighed and rubbed the back of his neck, "No, that's Hestia who's cooking tonight." He gave Thor a look, "Why?"
All Thor did was give a slightly pleading look and patted his stomach. He hadn't eaten since that morning and was overdue for his next meal. He didn't feel like waiting until he returned to Asgard, and plead with his darling wife, Sif, to cook him up something.
Hestia and Naruto turned to look at each other. Naruto held up his hands and shrugged, trying to ask the Goddess of the Hearth to be reasonable. Her dislike of the God of Thunder was evident for all to sense, even for said deity. The staring contest went on for a few moments, with Hestia trying desperately to convey how unhappy she was with the idea of Thor staying for dinner. Eventually, her shoulders slumped, and she released a huff.
"Fine, but only for tonight. You leave as soon as your plate is clean."
Thor let out a chant of success while Naruto put his arm around his best friends shoulder.
"It's just one evening."
Hestia pouted, putting her hands on her hips, "It's better be."
At the same time the Norse God of Thunder was visiting the Uzumaki home, another had followed her father as he trekked through the Nine Worlds, using the World Tree and narrowly avoided the overgrown squirrel that took up residence along its branches, and landed in Central Park just as Thor had earlier that day.
"This world has changed much since I was last here." The figure was female, though she stood out compared to the Midgardian women who walked past her, looking up and down her form. It was as if they'd never seen a Valkyrie before. Standing six-foot in height with pale silver-blonde hair tied in a braid, the young woman looked no older than eighteen, though her eyes and the way she carried herself spoke of a person far older than she appeared. A leather set of valkyrie armour adorned her body, though she visibly looked uncomfortable wearing it as a sheen of sweat quickly covered her brow as the June sun shined down on her. A golden necklace with a hammer emblem sat comfortably around her neck, and strapped to her back was an extendible spear and a shield.
Her pale blue eyes looked around the area. She didn't remember such large buildings existed in Midgard. They were almost as high as the clouds, though her gaze did rest on the Empire State building that stood off in the distance. She could feel the thrum of power that came from the Olympian Pantheon, making the girl somewhat uncomfortable at being so close to a pantheon that wasn't her own.
Mixing with other pantheons wasn't encouraged, though sometimes it was known to happen. None sought out these instances more like her foolish father, who loved nothing more than to poke and prod the other gods when he got bored. Sometimes she wondered if fighting was his true love and not the Goddess of War that awaited him back home on Asgard. Her father sometimes infuriated her, but she could say confidently she knew him like the back of his hand.
"There is only one man father would have sought out for a fight after all this time." She muttered to herself, groaning as the image of Thor getting chucked around by a familiar blonde appeared in her mind. Her father was not the only reason she was in Midgard, though. There was another reason she was in New York, and it required the man that raised her all the same, "You there! Answer thy question!"
Grabbing a nearby mortal, she held the unsuspecting man by the collar of his shirt, his eyes going wide as he was held by the large blonde woman, "Urm? Yes?"
"I'm looking for an establishment known as the Fox's Den. It's run by a man known as Naruto Uzumaki! Give me its location, or feel the wrath of the daughter of Thor!" She tightened her grip on the an's collar.
The man blinked and looked at her funny, "The Fox's Den? I think that's a place in the West Village."
"Which way is the West Village? And why there is a village in the heart of a city? That seems counterproductive for all you've built here."
He looked at her funny, "It's not an actual village. Are you an idiot?"
The next thing the man knew, he was finding himself getting thrown into the air and dangling from a tree, flailing around as his pants got caught on one of the branches.
"You there! Where is the West Village!? And have you heard of a man known as Naruto Uzumaki!"
This series of questioning went on for a good five minutes with more people, men and women finding themselves thrown into tree's or a nearby bush when they questioned the blonde woman's intelligence. One girl even made fun of what she was wearing and soon found her very lacy thong pulled so high in the air she started seeing stars.
"Mortals are useless." The girl commented with a huff.
"I know where you can find Naruto Uzumaki."
Turning around at the voice, her eyes widened as the most beautiful woman she'd ever seen looked back at her. Her blonde hair fell past her shoulder blades and hauntingly beautiful green eyes one could get lost in. She was dressed for the weather in a frilly pink summer dress that stopped just above the knees and a pair of high heels that looked impossible to walk in. Her smile was coy and spoke of giddy mischief. With her heels on, she was the same height as the daughter of Thor.
Gunilla stopped and stared at the beautiful woman. She could sense the divine energy rolling off her body. The smell of fresh jasmine was all around her. She couldn't help but swallow thickly. She was mesmerising to look at. She could have sworn her appearance would shift with each blink, and long tresses of black hair and emerald-green eyes would flicker into being.
Remembering where she was, she approached cautiously, "Y-You are an Olympian, aren't you? Of the Greek Pantheon."
The woman smiled and held out her hand, showing her knuckles, "The Goddess of Love, Aphrodite. What's your name, young Valkyrie?"
"Gunilla." Trepadaciously, Gunilla took Aphrodite's hand and kissed the knuckles, getting a widened smile from her, "You said you know where Naruto is?"
"I do. I believe I saw him entertaining your father, Thor. At least, that's who I believe he is. The scent of ozone lingers around him much in the way it does around Zeus." The woman walked around Gunilla, her shoe's clinking as she moved, "You have the same scent, though it's not as potent. It was very bold of you to come here when you haven't gained our permission. Then again, your father did the same."
Gunilla grimaced, "My father does not always think things through and does things on a whim most days. However, I'm here on behalf of Lord Odin to ensure my father doesn't cause trouble and to meet with Naruto Uzumaki."
"Might ask why? I'm rather fond of him, even though he's managed to avoid me these last few years."
"I'm not at liberty to say anything."
"Oh? You won't even tell little ole me?" Aphrodite fluttered her eyelashes, and Gunilla felt her willpower take a hit.
Swallowing thickly one more time, she crossed her arms and held her own, "Even you."
"I can be very persuasive." Aphrodite looked Gunilla up and down again, "I've never been with a valkyrie before. I can't help but wonder.
Gunilla didn't say anything.
Half expecting to be blown away by the Olympian, she was surprised to find the goddess shrugging her shoulders with her smile still present on her face, "Very well. I'll only find out in due time." Elegantly spinning on the thin tip of her heels, Aphrodite skipped off, ignoring the looks of hopeless dedication rolling off the mortals she moved past, "Come along, young valkyrie. I'll show you the way."
Gunilla didn't need to be told twice and quickly followed after the Goddess of Love, hoping no one else from the Greek Pantheon showed up and caused a problem. Then again, she couldn't help but feel uneasy being led away by the Aphrodite. She knew the stories that floated around the beautiful deity and knew what a tricky individual she could be when things didn't go her way. She couldn't help but wonder what kind of connection she had to her blonde target.
"Haha! She's so tiny! Are you sure she's a daughter of Zeus?" Thor asked, looking jovial, as he held Thalia in his hands and dangled her in the air. Said girl was looking unimpressed, her arms folded and cheeks puffed out, "She has his eyes, I suppose, but does she have his right hook?." He put her down on the ground and crouched in front of her, "Punch me right here, little one!"
That appeared to get Thalia's interest as her earlier disapproval disappeared, "Okay!" She clenched her fist and readied to land a punch on the awaiting deity.
"There will be no violence in this house, thank you very much." Hestia admonished, guiding her niece away from Thor and leading her to her seat around the table. Dinner was being served up, and the God of Thunder had invited himself for dinner, "Go sit down in your usual place. I'll be serving up food in a moment."
"Okay, Aunt Hestia." The daughter of Zeus marched to the table like a good girl while Hestia directed a huff Thor's way.
"You've been here all of five minutes. Behave, or you'll be out." She reaffirmed. Just because Naruto was okay with Thor being here, that didn't mean she was. Oh, she and the God of Thunder had met numerous times, and each time she was reaffirmed why they were like oil and water. Throughout the millennia, the duo of herself and Naruto would constantly get interrupted by a small number of deities who were aware of the blondes existence, but none more so than Thor. They were the polar opposite of each other.
She was quiet. He was loud.
She was gentle and patient. He was violent and brutish.
He reminded her too much of Ares. Ares was her nephew, therefore she had some amount of love for him. Thor, on the other hand, was a member of another pantheon who seemed to enjoy getting on her nerves. Where ever he appeared, he caused a mess and didn't appear to care about the consequences. Hestia didn't openly hate anyone, barring her own father, but she could say with confidence she didn't really like Thor either.
Tolerate was likely the best way she could describe it. She tolerated him because, for some reason, Naruto was friends with the man and enjoyed his company when he wasn't trying to swing a hammer into his skull.
"Go take a seat around the table," Hestia told him. A ladle appeared in her hand and pointed at him, "But one whiff of trouble, and you're out!" Gods. She sounded like Hera.
For once, Thor had the sense not to say anything stupid and merely gave a salute as he wandered into the dining room. Sally and Percy were already in the room, with the said boy taking a keen interest in the large man he'd never seen before. He gave the God of Thunder a small wave.
In response, Thor waved back similarly.
"Hello, tiny human."
"I'm Percy. Who are you?"
"I'm Thor, God of Thunder." He pulled out Mjolnir and showed it to the son of Poseidon, "And this is Mjolnir. One of the mightiest weapons in the known universe." He grinned, giving it a quick spin and feeling the air push against his skin, "I have killed many monsters with my hammer. Some as large as mountains."
Percy looked up at him in awe, "Woh!" He reached his hands out, "Can I hold?"
"Of cour-" Thor started to say before feeling two sets of eyes bearing into his skull. Sally and Melino looked at him as if telling him to think twice and choose a different answer. The hammer was already halfway across the table when he pulled back, "Perhaps when you're bigger."
"Naww." Percy pouted and stuck out his lower lip, "Please!"
"Percy Jackson." Sally said next to her son, looking at him with a stern expression, "It would be much too heavy for you. No means no."
As Sally spoke with her son, the God of Thunder looked in Melinoe's direction but quickly turned away as the Goddess of Ghosts levelled him with a dark glare. Perhaps it was best not aggravate the daughter of Hades. Thor could have sworn there was a dark aura floating around her body, but he was sure that was a trick of the light. The chill running up his spine? Yeah, that was probably her.
Feeling a tug on his shirt, he turned and looked down at the seat next to him. Thalia was next to him, her big blue eyes looking up at him full of curiosity.
"Do you know my Dad?"
Thor made a small humming noise, "Of sorts. We've met a couple of times."
"What's he like?"
"You've not met him?"
Thalia shook her head, "Uncle and Auntie said there are rules that stop him from seeing me. I don't really get it." Thalia scrunched up her face, "Does he not love me?"
Thor's mouth opened, yet no words came out. As much of a blockhead as he was, how in the world was he meant to answer that? It was like getting pushed between a giant and a hard place. What was he supposed to say? What was he meant to do? Naruto and Hestia were still in the kitchen while Sally was talking to her son. The daughter of Hades appeared to hear the question but was merely watching him in mild amusement. Her coal-like eyes sparkled in sick glee.
Was she enjoying the fact he was squirming beneath the questioning gaze of this little girl?
'Like daughter, like father, I suppose.'
Trying to come up with an answer as quickly as possible, he let out an audible groan of relief when the sound of the doorbell rang through the house, distracting Thalia and making the girl hop out of her seat. She made a beeline through the dining room and ducked beneath Naruto's arms as she raced to answer the front door. She didn't appear fazed as she heard her aunt call her name as she reached for the door and swung it open.
"Thalia," Naruto said with a hint of sternness in his tone as he came up behind her. His mouth opened, but before words could come out, a strangled noise appeared, "Aphrodite!"
The blonde-haired beauty gave him a dazzling smile, "Hello, you hunky man, you! Long time no see!" She walked straight past Thalia, whose only thoughts was 'who the heck is this lady?' The sound of Aphrodite's heels clacked against the hallway, and Naruto soon found himself just inches from the divine goddess, "Hmm! You look more delicious than the last time I saw you! Then again, I didn't think my window of opportunity with you was an eternity."
Naturally, the blonde did the only thing he could think of in this situation and called out, "Hestia! Get out here!"
"What!" He heard from the kitchen as Hestia's head appeared from around the corner. Her eyes zeroed in on the Goddess of Love, "Oh, for goodness sake! What is it with you all today." Hestia stormed out of the kitchen, face showing how unamused she was as yet another deity visiting during dinner time. Aphrodite proved quick as she skirted around Naruto, using the blonde as a shield to avoid Hestia's hand as she released a Tinkerbell-like giggle.
"Don't be like that, Hestia. I'm merely visiting." She replied, narrowly dodging one of Hestia's hands, "You've been keeping Naruto all to yourself for so long. I just wanted a little piece! That's all."
"You know as well as I do, that's not the kind of relationship we have!" An uncommon growl escaped from Hestia, "Will you hold still!"
"What's going on out here?" Melinoe's head popped around the corner, "Oh." She was soon followed by Thor, Sally and Percy, who appeared from behind his mother's leg.
"Oh my god, she's beautiful." Sally whispered and turned to Melinoe, "Is she a...you know?"
"Yeah, that's Aphrodite, Goddess of Love and the most irritating woman in my overly-large family."
"I wouldn't compliment her too much. Her ego's big enough already." Sally couldn't help it, but when she looked at Aphrodite, her eyes kept flickering from blue to sea-green. She wondered why that was. Even her hair was going back and forth between blonde and black.
The God of Thunder, to his credit, didn't linger on the Greek love Goddess. His focus shifted when another figure appeared by the door, "Daughter! Did you follow me all the way to Midgard!"
Naruto's eyes widened as a familiar young woman came into view, awkwardly standing in the door.
"Hi, Uncle." She gave a short wave as Naruto steadily made his over to her until he was a foot away from her, "Sorry to come unann-" The blonde valkyrie didn't get to finish her sentence as the shinobi brought her in for a tight hug, his arms resting around her shoulders. Very quickly, whatever awkwardness Gunilla had vanished, and a beaming smile lit up her face.
"You know you're welcome here any time you like. You'll never get turned away." He gently cupped her face, "I haven't seen you in almost fifty years. You haven't aged a day."
"I could say the same. It's one of the perks of being a valkyrie and living at Hotel Valhalla. Ageing isn't much of an issue." A downcast look appeared, "I'm sorry it's been so long since I last visited you. With my duties as the leader of the Valkyries, it doesn't leave me with much free time."
The blonde shook his head, "That's okay. You're here now. That's what matters." He put his arm around her shoulder and led her forward, "Let me introduce you to everyone. You remember Hestia, right?"
For one as formidable in appearance as the daughter of Thor, it was a surprise for all to see her act in such a shy manner, "I do. It's nice to see you again after all this time, Lady Hestia." She gave a polite bow but was waved off by Hestia and once again embrace.
"It's lovely to see you again, my dear." Hestia gently cupped her face, "It's nice to see you didn't inherit much from your oaf of a father in terms of appearance." Hestia's smile widened when she heard Thor grumble behind her, "You must stay for dinner. We're about to serve up."
"I-I would like that, thank you." She replied before Naruto introduced everyone else.
"That's Melinoe, the daughter of Hades and Greek Goddess of Ghosts!" Melinoe gave a nonchalant wave, "And that's Sally. The little boy next to her is her son, Percy."
"It's nice to meet you." Sally greeted. Percy merely gave a small wave, poking his head out from behind sally, acting all shy all of a sudden.
"Aphrodite, you already know," Naruto muttered and leaned in close to whisper, "Dare I ask how you met?"
"I ran into her at the park of central. She offered to show me the way here. Though, I did feel like she had an ulterior motive." She gave the Love Goddess a side glance, with the said woman being scolded by Hestia, who hadn't forgotten her fellow deity was there, "She wants something from you?"
Naruto snorted, "Of sorts." He wasn't going into any detail before gently pulling Thalia to stand in front of him with his hands resting on her shoulders, "And this is Thalia. She's been under my care for five years now. She and you have a lot in common."
The daughter of Zeus didn't say anything. She merely looked up at the blonde girl with widened eyes, her expression showing off an aww'd look. Who was this girl? And how did she get so tall!? And strong!? She looked like she could bench pressed a car! Thalia had never seen another girl look so tough!
Gunilla could feel Thalia's eyes resting on her and knelt on one knee, getting a good look at the girl. Her hands came up and surprised the younger demigod by taking her hands into her own. A kind expression, one she only displayed to those close to her got to see, took over on Gunilla's face, "When I was a little girl, Uncle looked after me just as he looked after you and showed me right from wrong."
Thalia tilted her head to look up at Naruto before quickly returning to Gunilla, "Really?"
"Uhuh." Gunilla gently squeezed her hands, "Are you happy here?"
This time it was Thalia who nodded, conviction written all over her face, "Uncle is the best." Thalia looked up at Naruto again, who smiled back happily, "If Uncle looked after both of us, does that make us sisters?"
Ah. The innocence of a child.
Gunilla laughed, as did some of the adults. Melinoe even let out a small aww sound, though, would readily deny it to anyone.
"In a way, I guess it does."
"I think I'd like that."
"I think I'd like that, too." She gave Thalia one last squeeze before standing back up. When Naruto looked at her, her expression changed again, this time into one more serious, "I wish I could say I came here for personal reasons, but I'm afraid I'm here on business. Lord Odin has asked me to come and find you."
Naruto blinked in surprise and felt the eyes of everyone else in the room on him, "Find me? Why?"
"We've run into a small problem. A problem on Jotunheim."
"Ah." Naruto rubbed the back of his neck, "The problem being who I'm thinking of?"
She nodded, "That's right. One of them is picking fights with the giants and running amock." Gunilla explained, "I tried to stop him myself, but he doesn't listen to me. Lord Odin tried to reason with him but was promptly ignored," Gunilla pouted, "He still just sees me as an annoying brat."
"Yeah, that sounds about right. You'd think after all these millennia, he'd have calmed down some of his more extreme tendencies." The blonde sighed, "Well, it's not really a question if I'm going or not. I'm the only one who can reason with him. I guess I'm heading to Jotunheim. That damn idiot."
"Woh! Hold up!" Melinoe replied, making everyone turn in her direction, "What do you mean you're going to Jotenheim? And who's she talking about?" What other kind of secrets was he keeping from them?
Hestia smiled, "I think I have an idea." She gave Naruto a knowing look.
"You're probably thinking right." Naruto chuckled, patting Thalia on the head s she said inquisitively up at him, "To answer your question, Melinoe, I have these friends who originate from the Old Era just like myself. Nine of them, in fact, and each one is as quirky and bizarre as the next. It sounds like one of them is causing trouble, and that means I need to leave for a few days."