"O goddess, accept my offering!"

I threw the drachema into the saltwater spring. The mist shimmered and turned. "Show me Annabeth..."

I hesitated. I didn't want to waste a drachema. But I had to follow my suspicions.

"Annabeth, the Labyrinth."

Instantly the mist changed colors. It turned golden. A picture appeared on the screen of mist. It showed my friend Annabeth lying on the ground, chains around her wrists and ankles. She looked terrible. Our old friend Luke was standing above her, a sword at her throat.

My heart beat faster. Luke had had his body taken over by Kronos, Lord of the Titans. He obviously wanted something from Annabeth

"So," rasped Kronos, "where is he?"

Annabeth shot him her death glare. "Wow, you're an idiot."

"Silence!" Screamed Kronos. Fire shot out of his fingertips. He took a step closer to Annabeth. "You are of no use to us. You are just bait. I would watch what you do. As soon as your friend Perseus Jackson comes, we can dispose of you like garbage."

"Percy will never come!" Annabeth shouted, but there was a hint of unsureness in her voice. Kronos stepped forewords again, and I could see the flames reflected in Annabeth's eyes.

Kronos smiled wickedly. "Oh, I think he will." And he turned towards me, ripping his fire claws straight through the Iris-message.

Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Cha

"Chiron!"

I burst into the door of the big house. Mr. D was playing Pinochle with three invisible players. Chiron, Grover, and the heads of all the cabins were sitting at the huge table.

I blinked. "Um..."

Chiron looked annoyed. "There is a cabin meeting, Percy. Don't you remember?"

"Sorry," I muttered, "I forgot. But, Chiron-"

Chiron frowned. "Not now, child. We must think about finding Annabeth." He turned to the table."

"But Chiron-"

"Not now, Percy! We have to rescue Annabeth!"

"THAT'S WHAT I'M SAYING!" I roared finally. "I KNOW WHERE SHE IS!"

Chiron blinked. "Well, why didn't you say so, Percy?"

I grumbled. "She's in the Labyrinth. Luke... erm, Kronos, has her."

There were assorted gasps and grumbles. Clarisse stood up.

"Wait just one minute!" She squawked. "How do you know this?"

I told them about my Iris-Message. Chiron nodded and there were noises of agreement from the campers.

Clarisse frowned. "But the Labyrinth was destroyed!

Chiron nodded. "So it seemed. But apparently, there was part of the tunnel under there that existed before the Labyrinth- an ancient tunnel, used by animals and the earliest humans. As the Labyrinth was destroyed, this tunnel was not originally part of the Labyrinth; therefore; it was not destroyed. Any more questions?"

Silence reigned.

"All right," Chiron said, "We must set out a group to go out and look for Annabeth."

"A quest?" Grover asked hopefully.

"No," Chiron said, this mission does not involve leaving the camp property line. The way Percy describes it, Annabeth is being held in Zeus' fist. We must merely go and get Annabeth."

I stood up. "I volunteer," I said.

Grover nodded. "Me- me too. I want to help Annabeth."

Clarisse and Beckendorf offered too, and, to my surprise, so did Silena. It became obvious why when she kept looking at Beckendorf and giggling.

Chiron studied us. "Hmm... Percy, Grover, and Clarisse."

Beckendorf looked unhappy. Silena didn't really look like she cared.

"You will all leave immediately. Meet back here in an hour and a half with whatever weapons, shields, and items you may need. This should not take more than a day.

Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Cha

We met back at the big house at three. As I waited for Clarisse and Grover, I thought about the situation.

Three days ago, Annabeth had disappeared. It was the middle of the night. There was one camper from the Apollo cabin on guard duty that night. He was in the infirmary now- He had a wound in his stomach. He would be out for weeks, if he ever woke up. By then it would be too late- Annabeth would be dead.

A member of the Athena cabin- Minerva, Annabeth's half sister, I think- had woken up in the night. She said that she heard a thump, and a shriek. She came outside and saw the wounded guard. In all the chaos, no one noticed that Annabeth was missing until I tried to ask her what happened. Grover and Chiron didn't know, and then we realized that she was missing. We had been looking for her ever since. Some of the campers were sleeping all the time, in hopes of having dreams about Annabeth or the Apollo camper (who I found out was named Jerry), but everyone was having the same dream- a voice in the darkness whispering, "No... You can not know... Only he can..." and the feeling of falling. Funny, I had never had that dream. Ever since Annabeth left, I haven't had any dreams.

I kept thinking about Annabeth. I didn't even notice when Clarisse and Grover walked up behind me.

"Per-cy!" Bleated Grover, "Are you ready?"

Chiron trotted up behind us. He put a hand on my shoulder. "Here. Ambrosia and Nectar. Just in case, here are twenty drachema and twenty English dollars. I wish you good luck. I can take you up to the forest, but that's as far as I can go. You must find Zeus' Fist, enter, get Annabeth, get her out, get her back to the edge of the forest, all without dying."

I swallowed. "Sounds good," I muttered.

Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Cha

At the edge of the forest, Clarisse, Grover, and I turned around.

Chiron looked at us seriously. "You must go. Our sources say that Annabeth should be in the entryway of Zeus' Fist. It is confusing why the Titans hid her, if they apparently want Percy to come to them."

"Because they like to play twisted games, that's why!" I growled.

Chiron nodded. "Off you go, then," he said, and we set off into the forest.

"Percy," he called after me, "remember one thing- there is no way you can defeat Kronos. Just try to get Annabeth out safely."

After climbing in silence for a couple of minutes, I spoke up- mostly because it was so unnaturally quiet.

"Clarisse, how's Chris?"

After I said the question, I could have killed myself. How is the boy who was driven insane and you found him and wouldn't do anything at all?

Clarisse shot me a death glare, and, to my surprise, answered. "He doesn't remember anything. He thought he was still in the labyrinth when he woke up." I thought I saw a softness in her eyes. She seemed to be happier when she talked about Chris.

Grover looked uncomfterably from Clarisse to me. A thought seemed to hit him. "Hey, we'll see Juniper!"

I winced. "Oohh... Bad luck, man." Grover and Juniper had broken up a couple of weeks ago, when Grover started crushing on Maple, a maple tree. Juniper found out, and... well... you can guess what happened from there.

After a little while, the path spread out, until we were in the clearing with the pile of rocks shaped like a fist from a certain direction- in any other place it would look like a pile of droppings.

I looked at Grover and Clarisse. "Are you guys ready?"

They nodded at me. I looked at the pile of rocks. I let out the deep breath I had been holding and began to climb.

Grover crossed the clearing fast, and I saw Juniper glaring at us from her tree. The rocks were around ten feet high, and I knew from experience that there was a small crack on top of the rocks that led down into a long tunnel.

We slid down the crack into our friends cell.

Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Chapter one Cha

We hid in the rocks. Kronos was pacing. Annabeth was in a chair this time, and it was only up close that I could see how bad she looked. There were burn marks on her arms, and her hair was singed. Her arm was twisted in a funny way- she had made herself a crude sling out of a strip of her T-shirt. She had scratches and cuts on her legs and her face, and I could tell from the fire in her eyes that she had not given up yet. It seemed that there were no guards except Kronos.

Relief flooded through my heart. She was alive and strong, if not O.K. I snuck forwards.

"Percy!" Clarisse hissed, "You can't go up there!But I had made up my mind. I was not leaving Annabeth alone. My plan was to sneak up behind Kronos, hit him on the head, grab Annabeth, get her out of there, and then come back and help Grover and Clarisse finish Kronos off.

Unfortunately, my plan fell apart in seconds. Kronos saw me sneaking up behind him, and whirled around. He grabbed me and tossed me next to Annabeth.

She gasped. "Percy!" Luckily, Kronos had not seen Grover and Clarisse.

Grover, however, knew my plan because of the empathy link. He was going to enforce it, I could tell.

"Fool," rasped Kronos, "to come here and think you could overpower me! Ha!"

"Don't- don't hurt me," I played along. I could see Clarisse and Grover sneaking up behind him.

Kronos laughed, and it was a horrible sound. "I think I'll kill all of you off one by one- starting with your little friend here."

He picked up a long block of wood, and turned towards Annabeth. "You can watch while I kill her, hmm?" He swung the wood towards Annabeth, who I knew in my heart could not dodge it while tied to the chair, and I leapt without thinking towards Annabeth, screaming, "NO!", and the last thing I saw was the wood swinging towards my face, and Annabeth screaming, and Kronos smiling evilly, before everything went black.