I remember reading that Percy had never met his father. That Poseidon didn't even see him as a baby, but Percy was sure he remembered him. Well, this is how.
Percy was seven months old when Sally Jackson took him to Montauk for the first time. He had smiled and bubbled along in the back seat of her beat-up old car the whole way there, as if he knew where they were going and why it was special. Sally held him close while she sat on the beach, feeling the water rush between her toes. Percy loved it, reaching his arms out to the water, as if he wanted to go in.
Sally looked at the sky, nervously, but she wasn't checking for storm clouds. Finally she gave a little smile to Percy and crooned at him. She stood up and walked in the water, so when she sat down, Percy's bottom half was in the water. The ocean went still around them, and every time Percy waved his arms, little teeny waves would start around them. She smiled gently and kissed her son's cheek. "Come on baby. It's time for bed," she said, and carried him out of the water. He started to cry, wishing for the water again. When she placed him in his crib, nowhere near a window, he screamed as if someone was trying to chop off his fingers. Sally snatched him up again. "Oh Percy," she mumbled, rubbing his back and trying to soothe him. Then she had an idea. She placed Percy in his baby car seat, and moved his crib across from the window. She knew that he was too little to see the ocean from his crib, but maybe he could feel the warm ocean breeze. She picked Percy up, who was still screaming, and placed him gently in his crib, with his seashell blanket and starfish-shaped pacifier. His screams reduced to whimpers. Sally exhaled a sigh of relief. She was exhausted, physically and mentally. Being in Montauk, so soon after Poseidon left…it took a toll on her heart, it did. She locked the cabin doors, and went to shut the shutters on the windows, but Percy's whimpers escalated as soon as she did. She bit her lip and left them open. "He won't let anything happen to Percy," she thought. She kissed her baby boy goodnight. "Sweet dreams, Perseus," she whispered. Then she collapsed on her bed and fell asleep instantly.
Percy, however, wasn't having too much luck sleeping. He longed for the ocean. The breeze kept him sustained, but there was nothing quite like the water, he thought.
Suddenly, a gust of warm wind surrounded Percy's crib, caressing his cheeks, tickling his feet. It swirled into a column about 6 foot tall, and suddenly there was a young man standing by his crib. In tan Bermuda shorts and a maroon T-shirt cutoff, he looked around twenty five, with short black hair and smiling green eyes. He peered over the edge of Percy's crib curiously, cautiously glancing at sleeping Sally, then to his son, who was staring at Poseidon, just as curious.
Poseidon smiled. "Hello, my son," he said quietly, his deep voice instantly soothing and calming Percy, just as the sea did. Poseidon carefully picked Percy up, as if he were as fragile as glass. He went to stand in front of the window, shifting Percy carefully so he could see the ocean's waves crash against the shore, the moon reflected on the water. Percy whined wistfully, and started to fuss, but Poseidon shushed him. "One day, little one. One day, you will bear a great legacy. You will rule the seas, with power not contended since the old days. You'll grow up to be great things, my son. A great hero. Your name will be etched at the base of Olympus for millennia, and everyone will know that Poseidon's son helped save Olympus. You'll do the right thing, Percy, I know you will. The Great Prophecy can't beat Poseidon's treasured son," he boasted. Realizing that Percy probably didn't understand a word he was saying, he smiled at Percy, and warmth generated off him. Percy smiled back. "You have your mother's smile. A queen among women," he told Percy, glancing wistfully at Sally Jackson. He remembered the feel of her hand in his… what he wouldn't give to have that again. Percy grabbed Poseidon's finger and squeezed it. Poseidon laughed. "Oh yes. You're going to be a strong one," he said. He rocked Percy back and forth gently as the little boy's eyes began to close, humming gently under his breath. Finally he set Percy in his crib, covered him with his blanket, conjured a small stuffed horse out of the air, setting it in Percy's crib. He ran his fingers along the side of Percy's head. "Ah, my son," he whispered proudly, sadly.
He looked over at Sally, still sleeping soundly. He tiptoed over to her bed and kissed her cheek, and then swept out the window on the ocean breeze.
Sally bolted straight out of her bed, and her hand flew to her cheek. "Percy!" she breathed, panicked, and flew to his crib. Her little boy was sleeping, clutching his seashell blanket and..a stuffed horse? She looked around the cabin, and leaned in close to get a better look at the stuffed toy. It was grey, with a bright blue sea-star on its back hip. She shook her head, smiling gently, tears pooling at the corners of her eyes. "My boys," she whispered.
She never forgot that first night with Percy at Montauk, but with him being so young, he never remembered. Or at least, Sally thought he never remembered. But Percy always believed that his father saw him when he was a baby. The warm glow, the smile, were always there. Just not when Percy or Sally were watching.
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