Disclaimer: "The Heroes of Olympus" is a series by Rick Riordan, and I am not, in any way, shape or form, him.
At the risk of not making my deadline (before "Son of Neptune" comes out) and becoming non-canon, I start this tale that has burrowed itself in my mind. Without any further ado, I give you "Not a Greek".
I'm not sure what the worst thing in the world is, but waking up not knowing where or who you are while having a wolf stare you straight in the face has got to be right up there in the top ten.
Percy Jackson, said the wolf. I realized that this wolf must have said my name, for it was most definitely talking to me… somehow. I am Lupa. I take it that you do not know where you are? I shook my head at this question. Heck, I didn't even know how I got there, let alone where I was. Then let me inform you. You are at a camp for the offspring of the Roman gods. I advise you to not show fear in my presence, Percy Jackson.
Alright, so I might have been a little afraid of that wolf, but hey, you would be too! The moment she said that last part, however, I forced my face to become passive. Something told me that if I didn't do what she said, I would become dinner. But there was something else that bothered me.
"I don't belong here," I said, wondering if Lupa could understand me as well as I could understand her.
She did not give an answer. Instead, she continued speaking to me (if it could really be called speaking, anyway). Everyone here is a demigod: half-mortal, half-god. You have already been claimed.
It wasn't a question, but an answer came unbidden to my lips. "Poseidon," I said.
At once, Lupa seemed displeased. You dishonor him with his Greek name, Percy Jackson. You are the son of Neptune, no doubt, but do not think that you will be treated better than others, here. That is a respect that you have to earn.
I nodded, understanding. Then, I blinked, or at least I thought I did. The next thing I knew, I was nowhere near the place I was with Lupa. Instead, I was lying on a bed in a round, marble room with four people, two girls and two guys, surrounding me.
"Well, looks like the new kid finally woke up," said a boy who couldn't have been older than me. (How old was I, anyway?) "My name's Bobby. What's yours?"
"Percy Jackson," I said, almost adding "I think" at the end of that sentence. But no, my name was definitely Percy Jackson. That was what Lupa said, and something told me that she never lied.
It was only then that I noticed something that all of these kids had in common: they were all wearing armor. No joke. It was like they were ready for an attack from millennia ago. There was no way any armor like that would work against anything modern, but for some reason, that didn't seem out of place at all to me.
Well, I mused, Lupa did say that this was a place for children of the Roman gods. Maybe they only needed protection from ancient Roman weapons.
Bobby looked like he was going to speak again when someone else came storming up. "Why is it," she spoke with her voice level but still full of anger, "that though two of you specifically told me that you would pack and be ready to go by noon, everyone has decided to stand around and ogle the new son of Neptune? Are we or are we not supposed to be looking for Jason, here?"
"Reyna, we're sorry," said one of the girls, "but look." She pulled this Reyna girl closer so I could actually see her.
"What do you want me to see?" Reyna asked. She had the distinct look about her of someone who was supposed to be in control of her emotions, and yet she was definitely losing her patience.
"Look at his eyes, Reyna," the girl said. "You said that Juno sent you a vision that a boy would come with eyes that seemed to reflect the ocean."
I felt mildly uncomfortable with Reyna surveying me like that. She had really pretty blond hair that definitely reminded me of someone, but I couldn't tell who.
"Are you a son of Neptune?" Reyna asked. It took a moment to realize that she was speaking to me. I was about to open my mouth and correct her, telling her that I was the son of Poseidon, when I realized that they were the same, just with different names, and for some reason, they didn't like people using the Greek names over Roman names (heck, I didn't even know why I liked them).
"Er… yes," I answered, not really sure what else to say.
"Tell me," her face was really close to mine, now, and her eyes looked very dangerous, "do you know someone by the name of Jason Grace? He is the son of Jupiter, as in your father's brother. Where is he?"
I was getting pretty intimidated. She seemed to really care about this Jason guy. And why was the name "Grace" so familiar? I knew I had heard it somewhere, but it wouldn't come to me, like any memories I had before waking up in front of Lupa.
"I-I don't know," I told her. "I can't remember anything."
"Some trick from Mercury, no doubt," said one girl who had been standing at the edge of the group. "He has been known to steal many things, why no memories."
"I'm not sure Mercury can do that, Gwen," Bobby said. "Hermes likes to steal physical objects. I doubt he'd have any use for memories."
"What do you think, Dakota?" Reyna asked, not taking her eyes off Percy until she realized that she wasn't being answered. She looked at a boy who was nodding off where he stood. She raised her voice louder. "DAKOTA!"
"Streamers!" he said, waking with a start. "Oh, what were you saying, Reyna? I must have fallen asleep."
"No doubt you did," Reyna said, annoyance in her voice. "You never sleep at night, so you find it acceptable to do so in the day."
I must have looked confused because Bobby took it upon himself to explain to me what that was about. "Dakota is the son of Bacchus, the god of parties. Every night he throws a huge party. It was fun at first, but they've just gotten old, now."
"Shut up, Bobby, my parties are mad awesome," Dakota defended.
Bobby continued. "Right, well anyway, I'm a son of Vulcan, god of fire and the forge. I bet I could make you a pretty cool sword, if you want. Hazel," he motioned to the girl who had dragged Reyna over to get a better look at me, "is a daughter of Trivia, the goddess of magic. Her spells could get you in and out of a lot of trouble, so be alert." Hazel laughed. He motioned to the girl at the edge. "That's Gwendolyn. She's the daughter of Ceres, the goddess of agriculture, and she likes to help the cooking staff." Gwendolyn tried to give me a polite smile, but she looked like she'd rather be doing something else (like farming, I guessed). "And you've already met Reyna."
"My mother is Minerva, goddess of wisdom," she said. She gave me a "that-makes-me-so-much-smarter-than-you" look.
"Anyway, there really isn't any reason for you to be in the infirmary, anymore," Bobby said, (oh, so that's where I was), "so Reyna's going to take you to the Neptune cabin."
"What?" Reyna asked, incredulous. "Why me?"
"Because you probably have some questions for him, and you'll probably want to inform him on what's to come," Bobby answered simply.
"Fine," Reyna accepted, grudgingly. She turned to the door of the room before looking behind to me. "Well, get up."
I got out of the small cot I was lying in and followed her.
The moment we left the building, I had that familiar feeling that I was not where I was supposed to be. There were many small, marble buildings around the camp in neat lines. Off in the distance, I saw that there were some people (campers) all milling in an out of the entrance of a tall, circular building that looked like a replica of the Coliseum.
"Hurry up," Reyna called, and I found that she was already a few paces ahead of me. She led me to one of the buildings in a row that was the closest to the mini-Coliseum. "This is the cabin for Neptune and where you will be staying. I suggest that you get some rest before tonight's test."
"What test?" I asked, thoroughly confused. Bobby had mentioned it back in the infirmary, and I didn't have a chance to ask him about it.
"All new campers must fight against someone in the First Legion in the Coliseum after their first dinner," she answered matter-of-factly.
"Who's the First Legion?" I asked, almost afraid of the answer.
"You've already met them," she told me. "Bobby, Gwendolyn, Hazel, Dakota, and me."