Chapter Three

Percy's P.O.V.

Then, Echidna transformed into her snake lady form, which was horrifyingly ugly. I looked around at the mortals. They saw something alright, I could judge that from their terrified screams and squeals. The girl, on the other hand, narrowed her eyes, and her expression dangerous as well as stern.

I uncapped Riptide, and the girl looked at it in confusion but I didn't have the time to explain. I had to take down Echidna before the whole bookstore was burned down or destroyed and before I could be named a juvenile delinquent once more.

"Well, Percy Jackson, I get to have another chance to destroy you. And after that, I'll deal with that other half-blood," Echidna snarled, glancing at the girl.

"Fat chance," I taunted like a kindergartener. I raised Riptide and charged. Echidna was pretty quick, despite being so fat (I suppose it was her monster instincts). She dodged my first slash and lunged at me. I barely scrambled out of the way but was left defenseless. She knew I was weak, because I was still recovering from her last attack. She lunged at me once more. I looked around for Riptide, but it was clearly out of reach. It wouldn't come back to me in time, either. I held my breath and prepared to die.

Just then, the girl jumped on Echidna's back and drove Riptide into her arm. Echidna howled in rage and threw the girl off her back in amazing speed. The girl should've crashed into the metal bookshelves, hard; instead, she was cushioned by an invisible force. Riptide skittered even farther away. My chance was clear now.

Echidna closed in on the girl who hadn't stood up yet. "How dare you, Estella Harrison? I will destroy you first!" Echidna stepped forcefully on the girl's outstretched leg and the girl yelped in pain. By that time, I had reached Riptide, grabbed it and drove the celestial bronze blade through Echidna. Echidna stopped moving and exploded into monster dust a couple moments later. The mortals around us were screaming. Some books had spilled to the carpet floor, and somehow had gotten torched on fire. A man in his late thirties ran over to the girl and was talking to her.

"Stella! What happened?" he yelled, frantically. The girl appeared to be too weak to say anything. There was a pool of blood near her knee. The man saw the dust. "They came after you, didn't they?" The girl faintly nodded. I walked over, Riptide still in my hand. The man turned toward my direction.

"You!" he pointed at me. Great, I thought, I'm going to get blamed again. "You're half-blood, aren't you?" I nodded. The girl barely held on to consciousness.

"Take her to camp. She needs to go now," he looked sad, yet fondly caressed the girl's cheek. "I knew they would come one day, but I didn't know when. It's for her sake she has to go to camp. Can you help her out?"

I nodded and slowly hobbled to the exit with the girl leaning on me. I carefully called Argus using the man's (who I presumed was her dad) cell phone and it wasn't long before he came around. He helped me get the injured girl into the car.

"Be safe," the girl's dad told me before I closed the car door. I nodded. The man waved goodbye after assuring me that he would cover up the incident at the bookstore. Argus then drove away, as fast as possible, to Camp Half-Blood. I turned to look at the girl. Her left knee was splattered with blood, and still flowing. I thought she had fainted from the blood loss, with her eyes closed and all, but she surprised me when she whispered hoarsely:

"I thought Echidna was a type of anteater." That reminded me of my first encounter with Echidna, also. I smiled at what she said.

"So did I," I smiled. "So did I."

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When we finally got back to camp, it was past lunchtime. My stomach growled loudly, but I had to carry the girl past the borderline anyway, to keep her safe. Daniel Meir, Morpheus' kid, hurried over to help me from his border patrol. The girl had fainted by now, definitely, her breathing slow but even.

"All this happened because you went to the bookstore?" he teased. I punched him on the shoulder, which didn't turn out as a punch from its minimal impact. He laughed and helped me get her to the Big House infirmary. Luckily, we bumped into Annabeth along the way and she helped us as well.

"Another half-blood?" Annabeth asked, catiously. She looked concerned.

"Shouldn't it be perfectly normal by now?" I said. She just shook her head in contemplation and muttered something to herself. I was about to ask her what she was worried about, but then, Chiron wheeled out to see what had happened.

"I'll get her into the infirmary," Chiron assured, standing up to get into his centaur form. He slung the girl, carefully, onto his back. "Daniel, you will nurse her back to health and tend her wound. As for you Percy, I presume you haven't bought the textbooks," he sighed and bent down to enter the Big House with Daniel trailing behind him.

I turned to Annabeth, still confused about her attitude to the new girl. "What's wrong with her? Why is everyone so cautious about the new half-bloods we get these days?" I exploded in frustration. I felt like I didn't know something that the others were talking about.

Annabeth looked down at her feet. She sighed. "Just tell me," I wailed like a little kid wanting something.

Annabeth looked up, her gray eyes stormy and full of fear. "Percy, there's a new prophecy: the gods can rise or fall once more."

Author's Talk

Sorry for not updating! I was so busy (homework- i hate it!)! Well, at least I had the time to get this updated.

please review- i'm still taking characters if you wish to submit them! also, point out any grammatical errors i make, i'm a horribly slow typer so i don't proofread my chapters before uploading.

thanks so so much to all who reviewed! i'm happy you all are enjoying my story!

~emeraldangel527

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