And this is my first Percy Jackson AU. Enjoy.
Obviously, I do not own the rights to PJatO. Duh. That's why I'm on fanfiction in the first place.
And so, without further ado, I'm letting Annabeth take the story from here.
I'm not afraid of heights. I like airplanes. So why was why trembling uncontrollably?
"Are you alright, miss?" A young flight attendant asked me. His brown eyes were full of concern. I smiled shakily up at him and brushed a blonde curl out of my face.
"I'm fine," I said. "Thank you."
He smiled reassuringly and patted my shoulder. "Don't worry," he said to me, "We're almost set to land. It should be about 20 minutes until we touch down in La Guardia."
To prove his statement, the captain came over the intercom and announced that we would be arriving soon. Arriving in New York.
I started trembling even more.
"I'm not afraid of flying," I said. "I don't know why I'm shaking. But I'll be okay."
"Are you meeting someone?"
I froze. The flight attendant had reminded me of the one person I had managed to forget about for the past 4 hours. Memories came flooding back to me. The way his green eyes looked like the ocean on that last day, 3 years ago. The way his black hair fell in front of his face as it got longer. The way he always smelled like saltwater or chlorine. The way he would wrap his arm around my waist protectively when we'd walk by a group of boys on the streets of Manhattan.
Come to think of it, I actually did know why I was trembling. I was nervous. Nervous about seeing him. It had been 3 years. That day at camp was the last day I'd seen him. Then my dad moved us to San Francisco. I wouldn't get to spend the next school year with him, or the summer after that, or the school year after that. I never liked San Francisco, either. Something about it made me feel uneasy, like there was some dark force lurking beneath the shadows.
"Miss?" The flight attended said.
"I'm here, I'm here," I shook my head and returned to the present. "I am meeting someone. An old friend."
There was a 'ding' as I said this, and the flight attendant and I looked up at the seat-belt button, which had been turned on.
"I hope everything goes well when you meet your friend," he said, turning to walk down the aisle and return to his flight attendant cabin.
"Yeah," I said under my breath. "Me too."
The flight attendant stopped and turned around.
"My name's Justin," he said, smiling. "What's yours?"
I grinned at him.
"Annabeth," I replied.
"It's a pleasure," he said before jogging down the aisle to take his seat as we prepared to land in New York City.
I should have packed light. I didn't pack light. I should have. I didn't. I usually plan these things out before I do them, being the strategist that I am, but I sort of forgot to this time. When I got the call, I pretty much dropped everything, threw most of what I owned into 2 suitcases and a duffel bag, and boarded a California plane heading straight for New York.
I grabbed my suitcases out of baggage claim and stood near the front of the airport. I could navigate the city streets by myself, but if he was waiting for me...
"Excuse me," a young man said to an elderly couple more than 6 yards away from me. I could only see the back of his head, but I knew who it was. And my heart skipped a beat.
"Yes?" the woman said politely.
"I hate to bother you, but I just need to ask you if you've seen a young girl come to baggage claim recently." His hands fell to his sides. In one of them he held a sign that had two words scribbled across it in his messy handwriting. Annabeth Chase.
"Go on," the man said to him.
"She's got blonde hair and gray eyes," he said to the couple. "She's really pretty and you can tell just by looking at her that she's really smart. She's got really intelligent expressions that make you want to rip your hair out. I'm sorry. I'm ranting. Have you seen her?"
The old woman smiled and pointed an elegant finger straight at me. The boy turned around slowly, to see me smirking back at him. I had to focus to keep the calm expression on my face. On the inside, I was hyperventilating.
"T-thank you," he managed to mutter to the couple. He started taking strides towards me. I dropped my bags and wrapped my arms around his shoulders as he gave me a huge hug. He lifted me off the ground and I laughed and held him tight. He still smelled like the ocean.
When he set me down, I planted a kiss on his cheek.
"So that's what you think of me, Seaweed Brain?" I demanded jokingly, tears on the corners of my smiling eyes. I quickly blinked them back.
"Nice to see you again too, Wise Girl," he replied, wrapping his arm around my waist the way he used to do. He picked up my larger suitcase and slung my duffel over his shoulder, leaving me to carry only my small rolling overnight case.
I rolled my eyes and smiled. "I can carry my own luggage, you know," I said as we walked away from the old couple. "I'm not helpless."
"I know," he replied, grinning, "but I like to pretend you are."
Percy had his own car now, which surprised me, despite the fact that I should have seen it coming. It was a dark blue four-door with upholstery that even smelled like the ocean. I watched him as he loaded my bags into his trunk.
"It's been too long," I said, leaning against the hood of his car. He slammed the trunk and leaned on his car next to me.
"Has it?" He teased. "I haven't noticed."
I nudged him with my elbow and he looked at me, his eyes sparkling. He nudged me back and I smiled, pushing myself off the car and walking around to the passenger side door. He pulled his keys out of his jeans pocket and opened his door. Mine unlocked and I slid into the gray seat. When the car started, the air conditioning came on and the radio was turned down low. I reached over and turned the knob I guessed was the volume. The car filled with the ending chords of some girl power song as Percy pulled out of the parking spot.
"Tal Bachman, She's So High," A robotic woman's voice announced. I gasped and turned the volume up more. Percy laughed at me.
"Like this song?" he asked, amused. I smacked him on the arm and laughed.
"Absolutely," I replied. "Don't you remember?"
"Of course I can remember," he said, pretending to be offended. "My memory's not that bad, you know. It was that night at camp the last year, with the farewell party for the older campers. How could I forget?"
"I'm not sure," I said. "But you'd find a way. You always do."
Percy rolled his eyes. "Cause she's so hi-e-igh, high above me, she's so lovely,"
"She's so high-e-igh, like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc or Aphrodite."
"Wasn't she a Greek goddess?" Percy asked.
"Yes," I replied. "Of beauty. Why?"
"Just thinking back on our Greek Mythology course we took at camp that one year. Remember? Mr. D wouldn't let us stop studying. It was the one thing he actually cared about. Besides hating us, that is."
I guess I should explain this whole 'camp' thing. Percy and I had known each other since we were 12 and going to the same summer camp. It was located in the middle of these rolling hills in New York, at the bottom of this huge valley. There were strawberry fields and cabins and an outdoor mess hall, and it hardly ever rained, and it was the perfect place.
Still, he only went that first year because his parents made him. I had promised myself since age 7 that I wouldn't enjoy it, and Percy, I found out after I met him, had promised himself the same. When he arrived at camp the summer we turned 12, we were forced to take summer courses together, constantly having to socialize and be in the same room. There were things we couldn't stand about one another, but eventually we became friends. I started hanging out with him more and more, sometimes along with his best friend Grover, this curly-haired, brown-eyed boy who Percy had come to camp with. They became my best friends. We found out that we both lived in New York. He promised to come back every summer.
So he did. For 4 years. The summer that we turned 16 was our last summer. All the older campers left for their corners of the world, off to do their own thing. I would have stayed with Percy all the time, but my dad got a job transfer. So I didn't get to live in New York anymore.
"She comes to speak to me," Percy sang dramatically, along with the radio. "I freeze immediately"
"Cause what she says sounds so unreal"
And we kept up our karaoke for another minute of driving. We sounded pretty good, if you ignored the fact that neither of us could sing, especially Percy.
"She's so HI-E-GH-" he sang loudly.
"High above me." I finished for him. The radio played its jingle and went to a commercial. Percy turned the radio back down.
"So, how have you been?" he asked.
"Okay, I guess. I'm excited for the school year."
"How come? Found a great architectural program at the University of San Francisco?" He joked.
"Nope," I replied smugly. "I found an incredible one at Marymount Manhattan."
Percy's jaw dropped. He looked at me disbelievingly. His mouth opened and closed. I had come to learn that this meant he was trying to think of what to say.
"Does that mean-"
"WATCH THE ROAD!" I screamed as an 18-wheeler blared its horn next to us.
"Sorry," he apologized once he got the steering wheel under control.
"So, does that mean what I think it means?"
"If you think it means I'm going to be living here, then you're so right. For once."
"Hey!" Percy defended himself. "I'm right a lot of times!"
"Oh yeah, like?" I countered.
He hesitated. "Like now?" he said.
I shook my head and smiled.
"Yes Percy, like now."
Like it? Mind telling me if you do?