Ummmm…. Hi? *dodges rotten fruit, seeking shelter beneath her desk* I know, I know, I know! I suck, I admit it! :p I feel really bad about leaving you guys hanging for as long as I have, but I've been uber busy! Really! I've been on Spring Break (small yay!) and I feel like I've been doing more on break than I normally would be doing while in school… which is weird. O_o
Also, to be frank (not really, I'm not tough enough to be a Mars kid xD) I haven't had a lot of motivation to write. I've had a lot of different story ideas swirling through my head lately, and I've wanted to write them down, so I've worked on those instead of this. Again, I am so sorry! Dx
Anyway, I've let time get away from me, I know, but I'll make it up to you guys somehow, promise! :D I'm here now – both in school and online – so hopefully the updates will be back on track after this :) So, on that note, I have an announcement. First off, I have a blog! :D I started one on weebly, and I'm going to try and update it pretty regularly. It'll have info on what I'm doing with my life (like that's important :rolleyes:) when the next update will be (yay!) and what stories I'm working on next (double yay!). Soo, look me up, okay peoples? The site is raepriteauthor (dot) weebly (dot) com B-)
euan112358 – Thanks :D I can assure you though, I don't live in Texas, I'm not male and I don't have a wife or two kids so, sadly, I'm not R.R. xD A girl can dream though ;) aww, thanks! I can't wait for the real MOA but I'm glad you're enjoying mine so far B-)
AceOfSpadeZz – I think you need to lay off the sugar xD Lol that was funny though! And don't worry I'm definitely laughing with you! Oh and don't worry, I didn't get in trouble – just got a lot of weird looks, which is normal so I hardly noticed lol xD Thanks again for reviewing!
HGrox – Thanks, I try :)
Vio14 – Well, I would, really, but I can't since… well, I've never read them. Otherwise, I would probably put it in. There will be other Londonites thrown in there from various bits of pop culture, so keep a lookout B-) Thanks for reviewing!
Lubi – Thanks ^_^ I've been wanting to chew that guy out for a while now – seemed like a good opportunity ;) Thank you, you know I try hard :) Thanks again for reviewing!
Oh, and one more thought, anyone here watch "Young Justice"? It's really, really awesome :D Kind of my new obsession right now – mostly cause it has Robin in it (I love him! :D) and besides him, the whole show is just super, pure awesomeness :D Check it out, kay? B-) In harmony with that, the Robin-ism of the day is: this story's become a disaster – heavy on the dis! xD Love that line, anyway… Alright, let's get moving! Onward :D
That's My Seaweed Brain
Once we had docked, we quickly grabbed a map from a tourist stand and began looking it over. People passing us probably thought we were on a scavenger hunt, or maybe high school backpackers on a summer trip – the latter of which could have been plausible, if it weren't for the fact that Hazel was only thirteen.
Oh well, maybe we could say she skipped a grade if it came down to it. Technically that was true; in fact, she'd skipped about five years of primary education and potentially eight years of secondary, not to mention the other sixty something years in between. Ugh, listen to me I'm beginning to sound like Seaweed Brain.
Anyway, I was glad more than once that we had the advantage of the Mist. Jason, Hazel and Frank's weapons – a gladius, a spatha and a bow and quiver of arrows respectively – weren't magically enhanced for mortal hiding like Percy's sword. Piper and I could just hide our daggers and Leo was only wearing an unassuming (though admittedly out of place) tool belt.
If it weren't for the magic hiding the truth from the mortals, we probably would've been arrested on the spot. As it was, a few bobbies gave us searching looks, so we quickly moved on and ducked into a small café. We used some of our mortal money that Chiron had supplied us with and bought breakfast pastries, juice and coffee.
Percy sipped his cup of straight black coffee (I'm not sure when he started drinking it black, but he claimed it was because adding sugar or creamer took too much time, especially when you were running from a monster and needed a quick pick-me-up) and looked over my shoulder as I studied the map. Jason leaned over my other shoulder while everyone else alternatively talked in low voices or kept a lookout for monsters or constables.
"So what are you thinking?" Percy asked softly. "Hidden in a secret compartment of the Queen's desk in Buckingham Palace? Stuck in a hollow brick on the side of a building, right where the sun will hit it on high noon? "
I stifled an eye roll and groan. "You've watched those National Treasure movies far too many times."
"Can I help it if I can relate to those guys? They always have to solve riddles inside of riddles and are constantly dodging the law as well as bad guys – sound familiar? Ooh, you think we'll get to use that invisible ink trick I learned? That'd be so cool!" Percy enthused, ignoring my face palm. Out of the corner of my eye I caught Jason's lips twitching, Frank and Piper were smiling, Leo was laughing outright, and Hazel was definitely holding in giggles. At least someone was enjoying my boyfriend's horrible jokes.
"I highly doubt invisible ink will be on the agenda today," I responded dryly. Percy pouted but kept his other ideas about treasure hunting to himself. Thank Athena. "What I'm thinking is we'll hit the major museums first, and then try the smaller ones. If that doesn't work, we could start looking at some of the monuments of the city – it's possible something could be hidden in one of them."
"Annabeth, do you have any idea how many museums there are in London, let alone monuments?" Piper spoke up, looking worried.
"A lot?" Leo suggested weakly.
Piper sent him a light glare. "Try over two hundred and forty museums," she stated flatly. "Not to mention forty-four monuments or memorials."
Frank gave her a wide eye look. "You're joking."
"My father and I have come here a lot for shooting some films he's made, especially in the summer when I wasn't at school," Piper explained. "On one trip, my dad thought it would be 'educational' for me to see quote 'all the wonders of London'. So we did just that – for the week we were here, we visited every museum or monument possible. We didn't even get a third of the way through the list his old agent made."
She shook her head dubiously, sending her choppy hair and braids flying. "If you think the scrolls are somewhere in a museum here in London, we're going to need to limit our search down to a handful of possibilities. We don't have a week or longer to look."
"Beauty Queen is right," Leo said, ignoring Piper's punch to his arm at the nickname. "We need a plan," he pulled out a few pipe cleaners and washers and started tweaking with them, clearly thinking.
"What would be the most likely places a demigod or someone else could have hidden them?" Hazel mused, tilting her head to get a better look at the map on the table.
Percy sat back in his seat and sipped from his cup, his other hand resting on the small of my back. "History museums would be my first guess," he suggested.
"We need a narrower window than that," Piper insisted.
"What about an archeology museum?" Frank put in and Piper conceded that it was a possibility.
"It probably wouldn't be in an art museum," Jason mused, "or another specialized museum, like one for aviation or medicine or another specialized trade."
Wanting to keep up with the conversation and keep note of the ideas bouncing around, I pulled a pen from my backpack and began putting 'x's' over museums that were unlikely suspects and circles around the more possible ones.
"Could it have been hidden in a military museum?" Hazel suggested, glancing at Frank. His dad was the war god after all.
Frank pursed his lips and ran a hand through his short hair. "I don't think so… the scrolls hold prophecies – even though some of them probably predict wars like the Prophecy of Seven, I wouldn't think a military museum would be appropriate."
The others agreed, and I put several more 'x's' on the map. It was beginning to look like a very elaborate game of tic-tac-toe, but at least we were getting somewhere. "Probably not a nautical museum," I murmured, mostly to myself and I felt rather than saw Percy nod in agreement.
Jason glanced at the map and frowned. "History is too vague of a category when you think about it – natural history certainly doesn't apply, and neither do historical houses."
"What kind of history are we looking for then?" I wondered as I crossed off Jason's suggestions.
"Stuff about the Greeks and Romans – ancient history," Leo suggested.
"There are a few that fit that bill," I said and put a check mark next to them.
Percy looked over the map and suddenly looked excited, "Ooh, I wonder if…?"
"Percy there's no way it's in a museum of magic items or in Ripley's Believe It or Not," I said giving him a look.
His face fell as he gave me a halfhearted glare. "You're no fun," he griped.
"I know," I replied smugly and gave him a quick kiss on the cheek so he'd shut up and focus. It worked.
Leo rolled his eyes, setting a windup toy shaped like a frog on the table – how he managed to make that out of washers and pipe cleaners I'll never know. The frog bent down and flipped backwards a few times as Leo commented, "Seriously guys, all this PDA around here is kind of making me sick."
"If you upchuck on me, I'm throwing you off the side of the ship," Piper threatened, looking deadly serious.
Leo gulped and slunk down in his seat. Smart boy.
"Anyway," Jason said, eying his two friends like he was contemplating who to hit first. "How's our list looking, Annabeth?"
I stared at the paper in front of me, my eyes narrowed as I silently counted off the possibilities. "Cutting out specialized museums; historic houses; natural history museums; art museums; military museums; trade museums; transportation museums; museums of magic or other ridiculously unlikely possibilities; religious museums or churches; sports museums; science museums and dance museums, our list cuts down too…"
Percy looked at the list and groaned, "Still way too many!"
The others either groaned or made other gestures of annoyance. Frank pinched the bridge of his nose, "Great, now what?" he asked.
"Let's not panic yet," Hazel urged, though she too looked discouraged. "We just need another factor to narrow down the list we have now."
"Like what?" Piper asked. "London is huge," she threw her arms widely for emphasis, as if to encompass the whole city.
"Maybe so, Pipes," Jason said calmly, "But we can't give up – not yet when we've barely started. We've faced harder problems and found a way out. We just need to think."
"Jason's right," Percy added. "There's something that we haven't thought about yet – something we've overlooked. It would probably help us figure this whole thing out." He got that thinking look on his face – furrowed brows, wrinkled forehead and narrowed eyes.
Normally, that expression meant he was probably about to do something stupid enough to get us all killed. Yet somehow, I still followed his lead, stupid plans and all. I sometimes wonder why that is and then I remember that I love him… Stupid Aphrodite, she always screws with my better judgment.
"And that would be?" Piper questioned.
Percy leaned forward across the table, his coffee now sitting forgotten by his elbow. "Okay, we've theorized that the Sibylline Scrolls were damaged in the Great Fire that destroyed most of Rome, but that they survived and were hidden by a demigod. Said demigod, according to what info we've gathered, most likely hid them somewhere in London, in the last place anyone would look for them – a museum of some sort."
"Percy, what are you getting at? We know all of this," Leo said.
"What I'm getting at is we've missed an important detail!" Percy clarified.
"And that would be what?" Frank asked in exasperation.
"We haven't considered the demigod himself, or herself," my boyfriend explained. "We know this person was resourceful enough to hide the scrolls. The question becomes then, what really would be the last places anyone would look and more importantly, what hiding places would have been available?"
"You lost me," Jason said, shaking his head.
The wheels in my head, however, were turning a mile a minute though. "No, no, I think I know what you're saying. When London was founded around the fall of the Empire, there weren't any museums or memorials or statues up yet. The demigod who saved the scroll wouldn't have had half of these places to choose from."
"Oh great, so we basically wasted our time for nothing," Frank griped.
"No," Hazel exclaimed softly, "we haven't wasted anything, we just weren't thinking about the time table." She turned to look at Frank her gold eyes alight with speculation. "It's like if you asked me about the end of World War Two – I wouldn't know a thing about it, because I died before it happened. All these museums in London we've been looking at, the majority of them weren't built until hundreds of years after Rome fell."
Piper was nodding along with the conversation, but suddenly did a double take at Hazel. "Wait, what?"
"She's like Nico – kid from the past – except she died and came back… long story, we'll fill you in later," Frank explained hastily, looking more eager about our options now. "So, what you're saying is, we have to look at our list and narrow it down by date."
"The closer to the date of that fire in Rome, the better," Leo continued the thought, tweaking his jumping frog with a small screwdriver he'd pulled from his belt.
"Well, what's the oldest museum or monument in London?" Jason asked, looking at me.
I stared at the café's clock across the room, not even noticing the time, as I mentally searched through my inner databank of architecture information on London. "Some of the oldest museums are the Globe Theater where William Shakespeare – son of Apollo – performed his plays for Queen Elizabeth the First, the Royal Armories in the Tower of London was first opened in 1592, and the British Museum which opened in 1759. The oldest monument is Cleopatra's Needle in Westminster, right next to the Thames," I replied after a moment's thought.
"That's four potential sights," Percy muttered, and I could tell what he was thinking. There were seven of us. We didn't have time to travel all over London as a group. It would take too much time, plus the more demigods were in an area, the more potential there was to attract monsters. On the other hand, splitting up wasn't a good idea either – small numbers would be dangerous, especially when Gaea could have sent some of her soldiers to find us.
"We're gonna need help," Jason said, seeming to read the glances Percy and I were sharing. He looked thoughtful for a moment, "I think I know where we can find it."
A/N: Okay, so if you still hate me, I understand, but it's here now! Yay ;) This took a lot of research to write, believe me. I've visited London before – okay, so I was only there for a day, but still – and omg, the amount of museums and statues there is ridiculous! My family and I rode around on a double-decker most of the day and passed about a million of them.
London pretty much has a memorial/statue for everything – there's even one for the animals that were used in WWII, including a tiny glow worm, (which was put in lanterns for the soldiers that were in the trenches, cause, you know, a fire around all those guns and bombs wouldn't have been a very good idea) ;)xD Cool right? Alright, so, whether you hate or not, I'd love a review ;) lol see you guys soon! B-)