A/N: Hello! This is my first Percy Jackson fanfiction! This will be a Nico/Annabeth story. It's not that I don't like Percy and Annabeth together, I just wanted to write something different. I haven't read the books in awhile, so if I mess something up I apologize. Also, some of the characters may seem a little OC (nothing drastic, I promise). Oh, and I haven't read The Lost Hero yet, so that doesn't affect this story.

Also, it was brought to my attention by AM83220 that I didn't really explain when this story takes place. It takes place three years after The Last Olympian, making Annabeth 19 and Nico 17. I thought they were 2 years apart…but I could be wrong. If I'm wrong...it is fanfiction and I can make Nico 17 if I want! I know that's a poor excuse for lake of knowledge, but I'm sticking to it! lol

Disclaimer: Everything belongs to Rick Riordan. I own nothing and I'm not making money off this.

A Light In The Dark

Chapter 1: My Best Friend's Girl

Being the son of Hades, one would think Nico di Angleo wouldn't be interested in love and romance. Well, it was actually quite the opposite. Over the past few months, love was all Nico could think about. These thoughts of love were brought about by one person…someone who was practically untouchable…

Annabeth Chase, daughter of Athena. She was also the girlfriend of Percy Jackson, who just happened to be Nico's best friend.

Annabeth consumed Nico's every waking thought. He even dreamed about her when he fell asleep at night. It was like he could not escape the thoughts of the girl who captured his heart. Nico often cursed himself, wishing he could have fallen for some other girl who wasn't dating his best friend. When he saw Annabeth and Percy together, it nearly ripped him in two. Seeing them hold hands was bad, but seeing them kiss was even worse. He tried desperately not to show his disgust when they would show affection in front of him, but that was getting more and more difficult to control. One time he actually felt the urge to deck Percy right in the jaw…that's when Nico knew things were getting out of hand.

Now, more than ever, Nico wished he had his mother or sister to talk to for advice. Having no one to talk to was beginning to affect Nico (more than he cared to admit). Keeping his emotions bottled up made him more moody and he tended to lash out more than normal. Percy had asked him about it on more than one occasion, but the son of Hades assured him everything was fine. But, being at Camp Half Blood constantly seeing PDA from Percy and Annabeth was beginning to drive Nico crazy.

In the new Hades cabin, Nico would sometimes look at himself in the mirror and wonder if Annabeth would even find him attractive. His black hair was constantly messy and never stayed the way he wanted it too. Plus, he was rather skinny and pale. His skin, which used to be a somewhat tan, olive color, had grown more pallid over the years. It seemed being the child of Hades had that affect on you. His eyes weren't anything spectacular either. They were dull and black with no life to them at all. Compared to Percy, Nico was pretty lackluster in the looks department (though Nico did think his demigod powers were a lot cooler than Percy's). His powers were the only thing he took pride in, partially due to the fact that Annabeth was extremely impressed by them. She had admitted to him that when he had conjured the undead warriors in the labyrinth that it was one of the most amazing and courageous things she had ever seen.

The fact that Annabeth and Nico shared a close bond did not help Nico's situation. There were times when he and Annabeth would talk for hours on end. Often times it would be when Percy was helping train other campers or sometimes late at night when Annabeth could not sleep. He had come to know just about everything about her...and it was during these late night talks that he began to fall in love with her.

They would sit on the floor of his cabin divulging secrets to one another. While Annabeth would talk, Nico found himself admiring her appearance. Her long, blonde hair looked as though it were made of silk, and when her face would catch the light of the fire place in the cabin, it would take Nico's breath away. He sometimes found himself gazing into Annabeth's stormy grey eyes, losing himself in their beauty. Vast wisdom radiated from their depths, which captivated Nico even more. Sometimes Annabeth would wear shorts, which gave Nico plenty of opportunities to check out her lithe, sculpted legs (when she wasn't looking, of course). Her skin, tanned by the summer sun, seemed to glow in the firelight. Annabeth was the exact opposite of Nico: beautiful, radiant, and full of life.

One night, Annabeth was so exhausted she fell asleep on the rug beside Nico's fire place. She was lying on her side facing him, giving him ample time to gaze upon her. At the risk of sounding creepy, Nico admitted to himself that he enjoyed watching her sleep. She looked so calm and peaceful, and he didn't have the heart to wake her. Unfortunately, that turned out to be a mistake. The next morning when Percy went to the Athena cabin to find Annabeth, she wasn't there. To make matters worse, a few minutes later he saw her leaving Nico's cabin. Nico peered out the window, and saw the look on Percy's face. He didn't freak out or anything, but it was pretty obvious that the son of Poseidon was not a happy camper (no pun intended). He asked why Annabeth was in Nico's cabin, to which Annabeth quickly replied.

"Please don't be angry, Percy" Annabeth pleaded. "We were just up talking and I was tired so I fell asleep."

Percy had an almost skeptical look on his face, "I'm not mad. It's just…look, we'll talk about this later. I have to stuff to do."

Percy marched off, leaving Annabeth alone in front of the Hades cabin. Nico was hoping she would turn around and come back in, but no such luck. He could tell just by her body language that she was irritated and upset. Shaking her head, Annabeth turned and quickly headed toward the Athena cabin. Nico sighed and hit his head against the windowsill. He mentally cursed himself for not waking Annabeth. But, he didn't know Percy would go to her cabin looking for her in the morning. He just hoped he didn't cause a huge fight between the two. Despite how much he hated Percy and Annabeth's relationship, he didn't want Annabeth to get hurt.

Part of Nico wanted Percy and Annabeth to get in a fight. He played a scenario over and over in his mind where Percy had broken up with Annabeth, and Annabeth came running tearfully to him. He would comfort her and convince her that Percy was completely wrong for her and that she deserved someone who would treat her the way she deserved. Then, he would confess his love for Annabeth and kiss her until she was weak in the knees. She would wrap her arms around his neck, pressing her body tightly against his. Nico literally had to smack himself to get rid of the day dream.

'Like that would happen,' Nico thought. 'There's no way in Hades. Face it, she's Percy's girl and you need to get over it.'

But, no matter how many times Nico told himself to get over it…he couldn't. No matter how many times he tried to tell himself he didn't love Annabeth, he couldn't get his heart to believe it. Despite his efforts, Nico was hopelessly, madly, deeply in love with the daughter of Athena.

A/N: What did you guys think? Sorry for the lack of dialogue, but guess this is more like a prologue than a chapter. Please review and let me know what you think! I'll try to update soon.

PS: This takes place after The Last Olympian (just to clarify).