Six Times Neil's Teammates Thought He Was Hot and the One (But Only One) Time He Didn't
It was a burning July afternoon and the heroes were all down at the local pool, swimming, except for Archie. He was far more content to sit in the shade, reading and occasionally peaking discretely at Atlanta in her bathing suit.
It was during one of these discrete peaks that Neil climbed out of the pool, his well-toned and tanned chest glistening with water droplets and Archie, who didn't care for the guy's personality, had to admit that Neil had a hot body.
Ugh, Archie thought, horrified at his own stream of consciousness, and focused his eyes back on Atlanta.
"Neil, hurry up!" Atlanta shouted, pounding on the bathroom door, "I need to pee!"
Neil had been in there for over an hour by Atlanta's reckoning, which wouldn't normally be a problem except she'd slept in and the other bathroom's toilet had overflowed.
"Alright, alright." Neil said, finally opening the door.
"About ti-" The sweet smell of perfumed soap caught Atlanta's nose as Neil brushed past, making her heart palpate and her eyes stare longingly after him.
Archie, deciding to take advantage of Atlanta's distraction, slipped into the bathroom.
"Archie!" Atlanta yelled as the door closed in her face, "Goddamnit!"
Herry could not figure out what Neil was making such a fuss about. Obviously it was something to do with his looks. However, to Herry, his friend looked the same as he always did. His hair was shiny and styled. His complexion was clear and smooth. His clothes, stain-free and extremely fashionable, were worn over a beautiful, toned body that was neither overly muscular nor anorexic. He was, to Herry's eye, as perfect as always.
"What are you looking at?" Neil demanded.
"Nothing…" Herry stammered looking away as a bright blush creped up his neck and into his cheeks, "Nothing."
Odie was not sure how it had started but somewhere along the way Neil had decided that Odie's room was a good place to hide when Athena wanted him to help with the supper dishes. Well, it ended now.
"Neil," Odie started, spinning on his computer chair to face his fellow hero.
Neil was sprawled out on Odie's bed, bathed in the light of the computer screens. Most people looked sickly or menacing in this type of lighting but Neil looked plain amazing.
"Yes?" Neil asked innocently, reminding Odie where he was.
"Nevermind," Odie said, turning back to his computer.
Even though the whole incident of Neil becoming temporary leader and trying to put Herry in spandex had been months ago, he was still wearing that ridiculous hat. Jay wished he wouldn't. It reminded him of his not-so-brilliant leadership moment.
But it wasn't like he could order Neil to stop dressing up in what made him look good. That would be like ordering him not to breath. And Neil did look good dressed up in that captain outfit.
It was a good idea, Jay silently decided as he watched Neil preen in his mirror, for him to keep the hat.
Theresa didn't know why she bothered to buy these waste-of-money magazines. It was probably because they reminded her of her old life, the one where she wasn't a descendent of an ancient Greek hero.
And it was nice to take some alone time and do something frivolous, like catch up on the latest Hollywood gossip and fashion and ogle pretty boys. Like this guy, for example. He was pretty hot, though he looked a little like Neil. Actually, on closer inspection, he was Neil.
Theresa tossed the magazine away in horror. That was it. No more teen magazines for her.
The loss of his hair had been painful but, after a good cry, Neil had gotten over it. Aphrodite had not only promised him a potion to help his hair grow back faster but also an appointment with New Olympia's best wig maker.
No, far worse was the memory of the distaste, almost hate, he felt for himself.
Neil's friends didn't have the talent to recognize and appreciate his good looks but he had always been able to depend on himself for love. It terrified him that not only had he hated himself but that it could easily happen again.