Hello, people of Earth and Mars!
Disclaimer: I do not own Maximum Ride, nor do I own Percy Jackson. However much I wish I did, I do not. So don't sue me.
Chapter 1: Hunters and M-Geeks
Flying. I'm sure you've all heard of it. I'm certain that at least three quarters of you have gone flying in airplanes. But the sort of flying that I'm talking about… well… Let's just say: No engines required!
In case you haven't figured it out, my name's Max. It's short for Maximum Ride. I'm a bird-kid. Yes, a bird-kid. I'm 98% human, and 2% bird, thanks to the scientists who created me and my "flock."
My flock is as follows: Me (Max, the sort-of "official" leader), Fang (my best friend, right-wing man, second in-command, boyfriend, and soulmate), Iggy (the blind pyro who can cook), Nudge (the Nudge Channel, all Nudge, all the time), the Gasman (Do you really wanna know why?), Angel (whose name should be Devil), and Total (our flying, talking, fellow mutant "Canine-American" (he hates to be called a dog)).
Right now, we were flying over New York, trying hard not to think about our recent adventure that had been in Hawaii.
"Hey, Max!" Nudge said. "I'm hungry! Can we get something to eat?"
Of course Nudge would be the first to ask. Actually, she had been talking incessantly about it nonstop for the last half-hour.
I sighed. "All right."
She, Gazzy, and Angel cheered.
I shot a glance at Fang. He was staring at me intently. I blushed. Would I ever get used to being in love? I slowed down slightly and flew next to him. "What's up?"
He smirked and said sarcastically, "The sky."
I rolled my eyes. "You know what I mean."
He chuckled. "Nothing."
We shared a look, and I turned away, blushing once again. I swear, this boy was making me blush more in an hour than I've ever blushed in my whole life!
"Hey, Max!" Angel called. "What's that?"
I looked to where she was pointing. Some objects were flying straight at us!
"It looks like…" I muttered, stopping and hovering in the air. I looked closely. My eyes widened and I gasped. "Flying M-Geeks!"
I heard Iggy groan. I knew how he felt. M-Geeks were one thing, but a flying version was another thing entirely.
I barely had to think before I shouted to my flock, "Split up! Angel, up top! Gazzy, nine 'o'clock! Nudge, three 'o'clock! Iggy and Fang, flank me from behind! Move it!"
We barely had time to get into position before they were upon us.
I had hardly finished off my first enemy when another was up to take its place.
I don't know how long we fought for, but it felt like an eternity.
"Don't these things ever die?" I asked in exasperation, fighting back-to-back with Fang.
I swear he chuckled as he broke an M-Geek's neck. "Yeah, but not easily."
That was when the first arrow hit an M-Geek.
I blinked in astonishment as the robot's eyes blinked out and it fell to the ground below.
I looked at Fang. He was just as shocked as me.
I looked below, and saw a group of people, dressed in silver ski parkas. Because of my extraordinary vision, I could see that they were holding actual bows. Like the kind you see in the movies.
More arrows assaulted the M-Geeks. None came even close to hitting us, though.
It took only one volley for the M-Geeks to get the picture. What remained of their forces retreated hastily.
I looked down. One of the girls was motioning for us to land. I decided that since, you know, they'd helped us, that they were okay to hang around.
We landed near the group. Upon closer inspection, I noticed that they were all girls.
The girl who had been motioning to us came forward. She had black hair, sort of pale skin, and freckles. She wore a "Death to Barbie" t-shirt (which I applaud her for) and a silver circlet/tiara thing in her hair. But the strangest thing about her was her eyes. They were a shocking electric blue. (Pun not intended.)
"Thank you," I said.
She nodded. "You're welcome." She held out her hand for me to shake, leaning on her bow. "Name's Thalia."
I shook her hand. "Maximum Ride. And this is my flock." I motioned to each of them and said their names.
Thalia studied all of us closely. Not in a, "I'm gonna dissect you to see your brains" kind of way. It was more of a, "Who the H-E-double hockey sticks are these people?" kind of way.
"Thalia," said one girl, walking over to us. "Might I ask as to why you are talking with them?"
Thalia sort of paled, then looked at Fang, Iggy, and Gazzy nervously. "You three might want to hide," she whispered to them. "Lady Artemis doesn't like boys so much."
Lady Artemis? I thought. Where have I heard that name before?
The girl came over. She looked like she was about twelve-years-old. She had pale skin, auburn hair, and wasn't very tall. Like Thalia, her eyes were her strangest feature. They were sort of a creamy silver-yellow. Like the full winter moon.
She smiled at Nudge, Angel, and I. "Hello, young demigods. My name is Artemis, Goddess of the Moon and Hunt."
I stared at her. "You mean… Like… The Artemis. Like the one from Greek myths and stuff?"
She frowned. "They are not myths, young demigod. They are truths." She turned to the guys. "I do not approve of male company in my encampment, but for you three I shall make this one exception."
Artemis started to walk away, but I walked after her. "What did you mean by-?"
She looked up at me and smiled knowingly. "You wish to know what I meant by demigods?"
I nodded, astonished that she knew what I was going to ask.
"Have you ever read the stories about Hercules? Of Perseus?" she asked.
I nodded. "Yeah… A bit."
She stopped near one tent and patted the head of a timber wolf. "They're all real events and people."
I stared at her. "So… What you're saying is…"
Artemis nodded. "Yes, young demigod. The gods are alive, and very much real. I am one of them. They still go around today having affairs with mortals, something that, I might add, I never understood. Today, though, instead of being on Mount Olympus in Greece, we are here. In America."
She paused for a moment. "I should probably let Chiron explain this to you when you get to camp."
She walked away, but I still had more questions. Though, I had a feeling that this "Chiron" person, whoever he was, would tell me what I wanted to know.
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