iv.

The girl gingerly brushed her fingers against the riverbank, with little regard to the horrified expression hanging on her companion's face. He twitched and spasmed, as he grabbed her forearm, dragging her away from the wicked waves, dark and oily. He hissed a warning, a "What are you even thinking Katniss that thing is hell water!" in hushed tones, hoping she would be intelligent enough not to do approach the substance again.

The brunette girl gave the boy a smirk. Her gray eyes were bright, determined and stubborn. Percy knew he wasn't going to be able to stop her now. After all, it had been his idea, bringing her down to the beautiful land of Under, way to go.

Actually, no, he amended, while scratching the back of his head. The Underworld kind of sucked them in, dragging them into the void. Vines twisted around their ankles, tugging them away from civilization, and into the soil below, eyes open as rocks and minerals obscured their vision.

It was, needless to say, a bumpy ride.

Percy gave the girl another glance, seagreen eyes doing their best not to twitch. She was utterly fascinated by the River Styx, her lips were fighting the urge to smile, he could just tell. He never understood why mortals were so, he pondered for a second, searching for the right words. Interested? No, that word was too weak to describe the magnetic attraction between horrible things and human kids. Captivated? Maybe a bit too harsh, she wasn't under any spell, at least he hoped to the gods she wasn't, he wouldn't know how to deal with that. Okay, yes he would. He was Percy Jackson, for the gods' multiple sakes. He could undo simple magic, thanks to Annabeth's teachings. He just needed a lot of herbs, and water that didn't want to burn you alive, and oh wait, he was in the Underworld, there wasn't any of that available! Oh well.

The brunette was teetering dangerously close to the riverbank, but Percy gave no attention toward her precarious situation. He was trying to find the perfect word. Mesmerized? Nah, that wouldn't work either. Was that a bug, oh gross! The black-haired boy squinted, sight focused on a stag beetle a couple of feet away from him. He summoned Riptide, and ran after it, swinging his sword with expertise, slicing the bug in half. The insect didn't have a chance against him, nope! Feeling rather satisfied with himself, Percy turned toward his companion, ready to announce his success in destroying what could've been a terrifying monster, to propose a plan to get out which involved lots of rope, and, oh! He found his word!

"Hey, Catnip, the word is engrossed, isn't that great-oh by the gods, KATNISS." He lunged for the girl, who let out a screech, as her foot lost a place to stand on, sending her bony frame into the hell water below. He just missed her hand, as she plunged into the deaths, er, depths, of the River Styx. How had he done it, he almost forgot about the entire ordeal, he just remembered pure, and searing pain, and he remembered Annabeth, she had saved him, and he remembered oh gods he needed to save her, but how?

He couldn't see her anymore. Percy wondered if she could hear her, if she wasn't dead, or anything.

"Katniss, think, think really hard about what I'm about to tell you. If you don't, you'll die." His shouts were unanswered, but he continued anyways. "When I came here, I became a behemoth in terms of strength. I don't know what Panem says about Achilles, but he did the same thing." Stop rambling, Percy. Get to the point. "What I'm saying is, think of your weakest spot, where you would probably die in a single hit, this place is the most vulnerable on your person." He saw bubbles rise from the water. He cringed. "I just-"

A hand shot out, clutching for land. Percy's mouth flew open, and to his incredible disbelief, Katniss Everdeen, girl from a post-apocalyptic universe, his post apocalyptic universe, fought against the current, and grabbed a hold of Percy's expectant hand, a hand he put there after he regained his composure, and sprinted toward her. The son of Poseidon dragged her out, and she groaned in pain.

"Thanks for the heads up, buddy," she growled, in between earthshaking coughs. "Ughh."

Percy sighed, and pressed a hand against her forehead. "You're fine, Katniss. It's the after effects of making a contract with the River. You'll be fine in a couple of seconds."

"What the hell are you talking about? I feel like I got thrown under a Capitol train!" She seethed, combing her brown hair back with burned fingers. "I mean, seriously! If you were going to bring me here to kill me, could you have done a better job with a location? Jesus Christ, you're the shittiest murderer on the-" Her tirade was cut off by her face contorting into the portrait of surprise. Her hands were glowing, the scorch marks gone. She pressed a finger against the bruised skin on her face, and there was no pain.

Katniss stared, and stared, and then looked at Percy, with a look that demanded answers.

"You're, uh, well, invulnerable. You're invincible. No one can kill you, unless they hit wherever you chose as your weak spot?" His statement was so unstable, he wasn't sure whether to be calm, or to be shocked, because a mortal, a mortal from the future no less, surviving the River Styx was unheard of.

As of ever. Everyone usually died.

She let out a throaty laugh, threw her head back, and Percy pressed his hands against his face with a groan.

"Shit, I should've done this years ago! I would've won the Games in no time flat." She proceeded to pick herself up, flexed her fingers, testing their strength. Without a cue, she began walking the length of the riverbank, and Percy grudgingly followed.

Miles later, maybe, he finally poised a question.

"So, where's your weak spot?"

"Piss off."


notes: this was written upon request from angel, previously known as the genius mage! :)

as to the anon who said this was stupid, well thank you. i understand that this isn't certain people's preferred fic, but as to go on anon and tell me that, well. that was a bit sad, because we could've talked about what you didn't like.

anyhow. thank you for sticking with me after my disappearance! requests always open.

- RV