A/N: The beginning of their relationship isn't really told often, though a bunch of people write fics about them getting married and living HEA. This is one instance in my head about their beginning relationship and some of the troubles they went through. Every couple fights, even Percabeth. Just a one shot.

It ends okay, I promise. Please R&R!

The lamp smashed against the floor, Percy jumping back to avoid the shards of the broken light and the heavy thud of the solid wood base. The shouts continued. Annabeth spun around to face her boyfriend, fear and anger building inside of her.

"You don't understand!"

"What's to understand? You screwed up!"

The stress of everything in their lives had combined and erupted into a fight. Not their first fight, really, but this was the first time he had shouted at her. Her hands went up into her hair as she fought against the building emotions. She wouldn't cry…she wouldn't cry…

He stormed to the bedroom and slammed the door. For what felt like an eternity, he sat there, listening to the silence in the other room. Finally, he heard footsteps. Mumbles. Annabeth was talking to herself, moving around the apartment. Then a sniffle. She was crying? He heard footsteps in the direction of the door and then the soft thump of the door sliding into place, closing her off from the apartment, closing her off from him.

Sighing, he sunk down against the door, resting his head between his knees.

"What did I do?" he whispered.

It's over…it's all over. I've lost her. She's gone.

And for the first time since he was a child, tears fell from his eyes, his body convulsing with the force of trying to keep them in. A sob came from his chest.

Eventually—he wasn't keeping track of time—he stood on weak knees. There was no use crying over something when he could act on it. He would do whatever necessary. If she was going home, he would run to San Francisco if he had to, just to convince her not to leave him. Without her, he would die—literally, thanks to the little dip he took in the River Styx.

Still red-faced, he exited the bedroom, walking around the broken lamp and the smashed picture frames. As soon as he made it to the door it opened.

His breath caught. The blonde haired, grey eyed beauty he had been lucky enough to claim as his since the camp defeated Kronos—6 long, perfect years—was walking in the door. She stopped in the doorway when she noticed him.

Without a word, just a glance, she moved past him, into the destroyed living room.

"Annabeth," he whispered, following her.

She sat and leaned against the cushions, fingering the TV remote.

"You've been crying," she said. It wasn't sarcastic or biting, but calm, just a statement of fact. "Why?" She still didn't look at him, keeping her eyes on the black screen.

"Why did you come back?"

"Why do you think, Seaweed Brain?"

And there it was. The endearing, loving nickname that always told him that no matter what was happening she loved him—even though she thought he had kelp in his head.

"You still love me."

"I never stopped."

Percy drew a shuddering breath, instantly relaxing. He collapsed on the couch next to her and threw his arm around her shoulders. She leaned into him instinctively.

They sat in silence for a while before Percy gently removed the remote from her fingertips and switched on the TV, settling on the Yankees game. Five minutes in, Annabeth looked up at Percy, noticing that his eyes weren't red anymore, and he looked much, much more relaxed.

A half-hearted smile tugged at her lips.

He could feel her eyes on him as he turned to look at her. "What?"

"I do love you—and I'm sorry."

"No," he said, shaking his head calmly, "I'm sorry and I love you so much. Annabeth…" His breath was unsteady again; his eyes drifted closed as he fought with words. "You have to promise me that you'll never, ever leave me."

The raw emotion in his voice moved Annabeth. She lifted her hand to smooth out the tension in his jaw. "I promise."

After a short and sweet kiss they both turned back to the game. She sighed, settling against his shoulder. It was perfect. One of those rare moments where everything seemed right.

"So…" he said, stroking her shoulder softly, "wanna get married?"



E. M. Zeray