Pathetic. That's all he could think about. How fucking pathetic he was. Percy slammed his fist in the wall, like he was suddenly blaming the wall for all his issues and then stood for a couple of minutes watching his hand get red, and then blue, while the tears blurred his vision. This wasn't him. This wasn't how he should behave, dammit, he'd never felt like this before and he sure as hell hadn't acted like he did now. He got the urge to slam his fist in the wall again but he ignored it, and instead sat down on the floor, hiding his face in his hands. Pathetic.

He knew that it had been a mistake the moment he had walked into the woods, trying to find him. He should've just stayed away, listen to that voice in his head that said no, don't go in there. Don't screw your life up.

But of course he didn't. Percy sighed. And here he was. Feeling the world collapsing around him.

"Dad, have you ever had love problems?"

The words slipped out of his mouth before he could stop them. For a moment Nico felt like running away, ashamed over the fact he had just asked something so personal. But he stood still, as Hades watched him carefully.

"How do you mean, love problems?"

"Oh you know." Now what would he say? "When you're not really sure… How to feel. Or what other people think about you. Or in what way… You know… They like you…"

Hades watched his son carefully and puzzled, like if he didn't know where all this came from.

"Is it Poseidon's boy?"

Nico thought he would fall to the ground, he was so in shock.

"How did you know? I mean… No…"

Hades chuckled. Nico had never heard his father chuckle before, and it almost scared him a little since the sound wasn't one you expect coming out from the mouth of the death god. It was almost as scary as the fact that he had just admitted something was going on with Percy.

"We all know something is going on, Nico. And honestly, I think you should talk to him. I'm not saying that I'm completely okay with all this, it's Poseidon's boy after all, but as long as you're…"

"Don't say happy." Nico cut off his father. "Don't say a thing. Nothing is going on. Everything is just the way it was before. Nothing is going on, okay?"

And he ran out from the room, still listening to the sound of his father chuckle behind his back.

"It's wrong. I don't love him. I'm not even interested. It's not love."

"He doesn't want me. We're friends. It's not like that. It's definitely not love."

Nico was running down the streets, as if he were trying to get away from something that followed him, even though he knew that it would catch up with him sooner or later. Instead he found himself running almost in circles around the block, and without knowing it he always ended up with standing outside the apartment he knew was Percy's, when Percy wasn't at camp half-blood, or on some other mission he didn't know about. He sighed and tried to catch his breath, leaning against one of the big trees that were conveniently growing there. He felt like his insides were dying. He wanted to punch Percy for having the world feel like this, Nico had never been this confused and he had never been so mad.

"How come I always find you close to trees?"

Nico froze when he heard the voice. He started on the ground, very carefully avoiding looking up at Percy.

"Go away"

"You think I'm happy about this?"

"I don't know what you feel. I don't know a thing about you. You're a bloody mystery aren't you?" Nico didn't know why he was so mad, but anger just built up inside of him and he couldn't stop it. Even though he couldn't see it, he could tell what look Percy had right now. It stung in his heart. Percy grabbed his arm.

"You're the mystery. You're the one doing this."

"Let me go. I'm not doing anything. You started it."

Nico tried to push Percy away but it was as if something was stopping him, and it was not Percy, it was himself. Percy got another grip of Nico's wrist.

"I didn't want it to be like this. I didn't want… I can't help it."

"I just…"

Nico didn't know what to say. Or do. The world was blurry, he tried to think of something to say or even better, get away from there but the more he tried, the closer he seemed to get to Percy. He could feel his body heat and it felt like nothing was more right than getting even closer than he already was, like he needed it. He craved it. Percy breathed heavily.

"I know it's wrong. Don't you think I know how wrong this is? But I don't…"

"Shut up." Nico didn't know what controlled his body right now but something was making him bite Percy's bottom lip. And then he kissed him. Slowly, but as Percy caught up in the kiss, it got intense, almost wild. "You started it and you better finish it, you prat." He could see Percy smirking.

"Just don't regret it."

The bright sunlight woke Nico up. At first he didn't realize where he was, and his whole body was aching. He looked to the side and his heart almost jumped out of his body when he spotted Percy lying there, right next to him, so close that he could touch him with his finger tips if he wanted to. Percy was still sleeping, breathing slowly and Nico just wanted to explode from the vision. He could still taste him. He never knew that the wrong thing could taste so sweet, like nothing he had ever tasted before. He knew that maybe it wasn't wise, or maybe not good for any of them but Nico couldn't care less. He fought the thought to kiss Percy's neck, and instead fell back to the pillows of Percy's bed, looking at Percy sleeping, wishing he could stop time right there, right now.