Okay, I'm not gonna name names, but it got really annoying, really fast when people kept reviewing/messaging me to write me. I wrote a big long author's note about it, and still you guys did that. Thank you to those who did not. Future reference: don't do that. Moving on...
LAST CHAPTER REVIEW
Bernando tried to rape Torie, but Percy saved her. Annabeth walked in as Percy was trying to convince Torie to leave with him and get Annabeth.
Chapter XVII: Bullet and a Target
"You," Annabeth says calmly but sharply to us, primarily Percy, "are going to tell me exactly what brought you to this point."
"I don't want to hear about Bernando. I want you tell me what the Hades happened."
"I'm trying!" Percy snaps. "Bernando tried to rape Torie!"
"Oh, my gods," Annabeth whispers. "Torie, are you alright?"
"She's fine, I think- he didn't actually hurt her."
Hah. I touch my lips, which are tender and swollen, and think about how he had pressed on my breasts. They'll probably bruise.
"Why didn't you get help?" Annabeth demands softly, but a crease of slight panic rests on her brow.
"I couldn't leave Torie alone, and she wouldn't leave. I had just about convinced her to come with me when you finally showed up," Percy replies a bit testily.
"Mama sad?" Brian says quietly, his face worriedly pointed at me.
"Hey, Brian," Percy starts, standing up. "You wanna go get some Cheerios?"
"Heerios!" Brian cheers.
"Maybe even some fish crackers," Percy smiles, picking my son up and taking him out.
"Fish-fish!" Brian squeals.
"Yeah, that's right- fish own Cheerios," I hear him say as they descend the stairs.
Annabeth comes towards me and sits on the bathtub's edge. "You alright, Tor?"
"Yes. No." I manage. "I don't know."
"That's okay, hon," she says, which surprises me. I never really thought Annabeth was the kind of person to use endearments. "We're gonna go and get you all checked up, okay?"
"No," I whisper, feeling my face scrunch up.
"You have to," Annabeth responds gently. "You can't stay here forever."
"Yes, I can," I answer petulantly. "You can't make me leave."
"Come on, Torie," Annabeth says exasperatedly. "We both know I'm going to win. Why don't you save us some time and just come?"
I stand up, wobbling a bit. "O-okay," I mumble.
She takes one look at my attire and sighs. "Let's get you some pants."
I know that it's warm outside, so why do I feel so cold? I shiver and wrap my arms just under my chest for warmth.
"Let's go to the Apollo cabin," Annabeth says quietly. "One of your siblings can give you a check-over."
Gently, she guides me in the direction of the golden cabin. "Here we are," she sighs, and knocks crisply.
The door jolts open, and Lania peers out grumpily. "Whaddya want?" she snaps.
"We need to come in and talk to your cabin leader," Annabeth replies seriously.
"Why?" Lania moans.
"We need to talk to your cabin leader," she restates firmly. "Now."
"Fine. CARLOS!" Lania hollers. "ANNABETH WANTS TO TALK TO YOU!"
"Coming!" Carlos yells back. Within five seconds, he's standing in front of us. "Yeah?"
"Can we come in?" Annabeth asks.
"Sure," Carlos shrugs, and I step in after Annabeth. I can feel Carlos' eyes on me, and I go cold all over, even though I know he's my brother and gay and wouldn't do that. My shivering goes violent. I can't control it.
"Whoa, Torie! What's wrong?" Carlos asks, touching my shoulder. A wild shriek pushes its way past my teeth, loud and frightened, even to my own ears. The shriek begins to form words.
"Don't touch me! Don't touch me! Don't touch me!"
Carlos backs off, hands up in surrender, but I can't stop screaming. That is, until a sharp smack against my cheek shocks me into silence.
"Hold yourself together, Torie!" Annabeth demands.
"What the Hades happened?" Carlos mutters, golden eyes wide.
"Bernando tried to rape her."
"Oh, my gods," Lania whispers, her hand at her throat in shock. "Oh, my gods."
"We need to check her up… something could have… y'know, happened…"
"I don't think he actually raped her, just kissed her roughly," Annabeth replies.
"And he hurt my chest," I murmur.
Carlos gives me a pitying smile, but it doesn't help any. All I see is that wicked, assured smirk on his face.
"We need to get her checked over, see if there is any vaginal trauma or bruising to take care of. We also need to medicate her for any possible issues that may arise from this incident. Lania, get Amber and Jill- they're our best. I think I better stay out of this one. And you should be there, too, since you know about psychology, and you can handle the rough stuff."
Lania nods. "Yeah."
So they guide me to what most of the camp calls "the Infirmary", but what the Apollo cabin calls "the White Room". Once we're in there, I just stand dumbly.
"Lie down in the bed," Lania says gently- for her, anyway. "I'll be right back."
Bed? Cot would be a generous term. But I lie down on it anyway. It squeaks dangerously beneath me. Lania has already left.
Annabeth leans on the door frame, smiling sadly at me for a moment. "It'll be okay, Torie," she assures me.
I open my mouth to say, I know that, but what comes out instead is "How can you know that?"
"I have to hope," she replies.
"You have to hope? Why? You've a perfect boyfriend who loves you that you love, you've got friends, you're beautiful, you're smart, you're strong, you're a good fighter, you're cool… what could you possibly have to hope for? You're perfect!"
Annabeth looks at me in shock. "You think I'm perfect?"
"Well, you are."
"Gods, no, I'm not! Whatever gave you that idea?"
"Um, the fact that you're good at everything?"
"Okay, stop patronizing my patient," Amber says, snapping on gloves as she enters the room with one of our sisters, thirteen-year-old Jillian Harris. Jill has shoulder-length soft brown hair and sweet brown eyes and an oval, kind face. "Annabeth, you might wanna leave."
"Right," Annabeth slipped out and closed the door.
And then it began.
"Okay, Torie, it's over," Jill says quietly, placing a hand on my knee.
It will never be over.