Disclaimer: Percy Jackson & The Olympians belongs to Rick Riordan
So if you read my previous oneshot, When It Happened, I referenced something known as the Big House Broom Closet Incident. It wasn't really a thing... so I decided to make it a thing. And here is that thing. Takes place after The Last Olympian. Enjoy!
It was Rachel Elizabeth Dare who caught them, to the eternal shame of both offenders. Why, out of all the demigods, satyrs, centaurs, and mythical beasts at Camp Half-Blood did it have to be Rachel Elizabeth Dare?
Being the new Oracle, Rachel got to spend her summers at Camp despite her not being a half-blood. She was offered a bed in the Apollo cabin, but she turned it down on the grounds that she already had two parents, and neither was Apollo. She just happened to be his Oracle. So she stayed in the Big House, in a nice room on the second floor. It was always full of half painted canvases and the floor was rarely visible, just the way she liked it.
She participated in training with everyone else of her own volition and found she had a skill for archery. And even though the most innocent of questions could trigger a prophecy, asking what time it was leading to an edict of doom, for example, she was still well liked by everyone at camp.
Everyone, of course, except Annabeth.
Despite everything they had been through, there was still animosity between the two of them. Annabeth would not allow herself to be the crazy girlfriend, forbidding Percy from so much as looking at Rachel. She understood that they were friends and let it be, even if she spent her time grinding her teeth whenever they had a conversation.
Rachel, on the other hand, wasn't so mad that she had lost Percy as she was mad that she had lost to Annabeth. She couldn't help that she didn't like to lose, it was one of the few traits she inherited from her parents. But she especially didn't like to lose to Annabeth, since before she became aware of her destiny as the Oracle, she and Annabeth had been fighting over Percy whether they realized it or not.
So it seemed a cruel twist of fate that Rachel should be the one, out of so many, to open that closet door at that moment.
It was a blazing hot August day, temperatures breaking records all over the state. The Big House was the only place at Camp with air conditioning, so naturally everyone ended up there. It was crowded and noisy, and everyone was rather grumpy.
Annabeth and Percy had relegated themselves to a corner of the main room by an air conditioning vent, enjoying the temperature but not much else. They hadn't seen much of each other in the past couple of days, and what they really wanted was some alone time. All four floors were crowded with campers, even the basement and the attic. But they would bake to death outside, so it seemed like a non option.
That is, until Annabeth had an idea.
Percy glanced over at her when she fell still and silent, an intense look in her eyes as she stared at the floor as though she was trying to see through the wood. He knew that look. She was laying out blueprints in her head. He saw her do it all the time when she was designing buildings for the new Olympus.
He silently watched the smallest movements of her eyes as she followed hallways and passed through doors only she could see. Then she grinned, actually it was more of a smirk, and Percy got the distinct feeling he was about to get in trouble.
"What are you thinking about?" he asked warily. She just smiled at him, a little too innocently, and took his hand.
"Just follow me," she said quietly.
They moved nonchalantly, attracting as little attention as possible on their way to the stairs. It was easy, considering how preoccupied everyone else was with the fight that had broken out between a daughter of Hermes and a son of Ares over a spot beside the TV. They weaved their way between the campers sitting on the stairs and made it to the second floor without incident.
This floor was composed entirely of bedrooms, like Rachel's, Chiron's, and Mr. D's. They also kept several open rooms just in case. But none of these were Annabeth's target, as they were all full of campers as well. No, her destination was at the end of the hallway, behind an unassuming wooden door that Percy had never seen open.
She dragged him toward it by the hand, and before he could ask what was behind the door he found himself being shoved through it with Annabeth right behind him, slamming it shut and plunging them into complete darkness.
Percy stood stock still for several long moments, assessing the situation. The room was very small, barely twice the width of the door. The back wall was lined with shelves that were currently jamming into his back. Something was hanging from the ceiling, probably a light switch, but he didn't dare reach up to pull it. He was too preoccupied by how close he and Annabeth suddenly were.
The act of closing the door had left them pressed up together from knees to noses. One had was on his chest where she had shoved him inside, the other still poised on the doorknob behind her as she listened for anyone on the other side noticing their escape. Percy just stood there, acutely aware of every breath she took as the warm air fanned across his neck, every time she blinked as her eyelashes tickled his cheek. He swallowed hard, and she finally reached up for the light.
Percy winced in the bright light of a bare light bulb. With a glance, he could tell where they were. The shelves behind him were stocked with cleaning supplies, toilet paper, toothbrushes, light bulbs, and cans of diet Coke. A mercifully empty bucket held a mop in one corner. A wide push broom was next to it. Two vacuum cleaners and a dust buster were in the other corner. Extension cords hung from hooks on the back of the door.
A broom closet. Annabeth had led him to a broom closet.
He cleared his throat awkwardly.
She gave him a quizzical look. "What?" she whispered. He just raised his eyebrows at her and she frowned. "Well we had to go somewhere, I was going crazy down there."
She leaned back against the door, giving him a few precious inches of space. He exhaled audibly in relief, and she cocked her head at him.
"What?" she said again, but this time another smirk was forming on her lips.
"Nothing," he replied quickly. Too quickly.
"Does it make you nervous?" she asked, her voice a low whisper. "Being alone in here with me? Nobody around to see us? No room to do anything but be within inches of me?"
He scowled, blushing, and she let out a quiet laugh. "Okay," she sighed, her own cheeks coloring. "It makes me a little nervous too."
"It does?" he asked quietly with a fond smile. She nodded, turning a demure gaze to the floor.
"I just… wanted to be alone with you, that's all," she muttered, embarrassed. "We've both been really busy this week and I haven't had a chance to see you much." She paused and glanced up to see him grinning. "Not that I can't occupy myself without you or anything," she blurted defensively, and she felt the blush creeping down the back of her neck and across the bridge of her nose.
"Well I've kind of missed having you around," Percy whispered, placing light hands on her waist to pull her back against him. She rested her hands on his shoulders and leaned her head comfortably on his chest.
"Gee, thanks," she laughed a bit.
Percy was content to just stand there embracing her, but the next time she looked up at him, it came with a long kiss. That one long kiss turned into more, and as the minutes wore on it became clear that this was how they would be spending the rest of their time in this broom closet.
But as more time passed and the two of them became sure no one would find them, things escalated a bit.
As such, when Rachel Elizabeth Dare opened the door to get a light bulb half an hour later, she found them in a somewhat compromising position.
Percy had Annabeth pinned to the left wall of the closet. Her legs were wrapped snugly around his waist to hold herself up. His hands were firmly on her hips, hers on either side of his face, and they were so busy it was several long seconds before they noticed the door had opened. When they did, there was an excruciatingly long second in which time seemed to have stopped. They stared at Rachel. Rachel stared at them. Annabeth dropped her feet to the floor just in time for Rachel to burst out laughing, loudly enough to attract the attention of every camper on the second floor, and at that point all Hades broke loose.
Of course everyone came rushing over to see what she was laughing at. Once more than a few pair of eyes fell on Annabeth and Percy standing in the closet, both blushing furiously and trying not to be seen without success, someone shouted "Oh my gods! Percy and Annabeth were making out in the broom closet!"
Everyone started talking and shouting at once, crowding the doorway of the closet. Somewhere in the hallway, a camera flashed. The sound of hooves on the stairs caught everyone's attention. Chiron's voice rang out.
"Wait, she caught them where?"
At this point, Percy panicked. Annabeth, however, grabbed him by his shoulders and steered him out of the closet, using him as a plow to shove the campers out their path to Rachel's room. By the time Chiron reached the second floor, Annabeth had one leg out the window.
"What do you think you're doing?" Percy sputtered.
"If by what am I doing, you mean what are we doing, then the answer is we're going out the window," she replied as if it was the most obvious thing in the world and kicked her other leg over the sill.
"But we're on the second floor!" was all he managed before she grabbed the front of his shirt and dropped out the window, dragging him out behind her.
Annabeth, of course, gracefully tucked and rolled in the grass before she jumped back to her feet. She had to stop and help Percy up, as he had revolved once in the air and landed on his back.
"Ow," he croaked, stumbling after her. Then, "Wait, now where are we going?"
"Think about it, Seaweed Brain," she replied with a glance over her shoulder. "Where is the one place no one will bother us?"
"Oh right, good idea," he muttered, wiping sweat from his brow. It was so hot out, the sooner they got to the lake, the better.
So they spent the rest of the day in a pocket of air at the bottom of the lake. When they emerged, Chiron was waiting to lecture them. Annabeth blamed Percy, Percy was too surprised and embarrassed to disagree, and thus the Big House Broom Closet Incident went down in Camp Half-Blood history.
Of course, that didn't stop them from escaping there every so often. After all, nobody would expect them to go back to the scene of the crime.