"Alana Artista. Have you heard of her?"

The merpeople Percy were talking to all nodded. They had life expectancies much longer than what humans could expect. For all he knew, they were alive during Alana's lifetime.

"Great. We're looking for her. Yes, I know she's been dead for a while," he said, answering an unspoken question. "But she's back. Now, we know she's on the coast somewhere in America. We're going to need to check every beach on American territory. Will you help us?"

For a second, he was worried they would just laugh in his face. But the green skinned humanoids glanced at each other before they nodded. Sometimes it was easy to forget being the son of Poseidon had some perks when it came to under water diplomacy.

"Awesome. Let me know if you find anything," he said. His audience swam away in a blur of scales and skin. He swam to the surface, breaking through the placid surface. Annabeth reached down and gripped his hand, pulling him up onto Blackjack's back.


"We're all set."

She nodded. "We should probably head back now. There's a lot to prepare still."

"Yeah, let' go."

"Bows? Blech," Coridan griped, sticking her tongue out. Aaron wrinkled his nose, too. His arm was propping him up, but it was also what Coridan was leaning on. Alana pretended not to notice how close her friends were to each other.

"Shut up. You're just saying that because neither one of you can use them," she said, aiming at the next target.

"No, we're saying that because they're blech," he defended, Coridan smiling blissfully at him.

"Not all of us can be perfect, Nana. Don't blame us for it," Coridan teased.

"I wasn't aware blame and pity were the same," Alana said slyly.

"Oh, shut up," her friend muttered, her accent adding a twang that just made the others smile.

"Paris, Rome, I want to see it all," the blonde said, throwing her arms in the air and nearly knocking her latte off the counter. Coridan dove forward to catch it, still balancing the next customers order in her free hand. She dodged one of her coworkers and managed to get the drink tray to the serious man in the suit before every cup of black coffee could topple onto the ground. After the man paid her for the beverages, Coridan offered her best smile and turned back to her eccentric friend. Well, not friend, exactly. Coridan was the only one willing to listen to the blonde babble about how much she could do with her father's money.

"And then, I'll go have tea with the Queen. Oh, can't you just see it, Danny?"

"Cori," Coridan corrected her, swallowing her annoyance.

"Right, Cori. Can't you just see it? You'll have to come with me, though. Gosh, I don't know a dang thing about Great Britain. But you lived there; you could be my tour guide! Oh, wouldn't that be fun?"

"Mhm," Coridan murmured, nodding her head as much as she could with her elbow on the table and her chin in her hand. The store was busy, but her coworkers understood that listening to Christy was an important and time consuming job.

"This is fantastic! I'm so happy I have a friend like you! Tell me, what is it like, um, over the pond? Is that how you say it?"

"Well, I haven't been back in a while. It's probably changed since then."

"Oh, silly. How old are you? Like, twenty-four? It can't be that long."

"Twenty-six." But I haven't been back since the forties.

"See! Not that long at all!"

"Yeah, well. Hey, look. It's nine o'clock. Don't you have an appointment?"

Christy gasped. "You're right. I don't know what I'd do without you, Danny!"

"Cori," she corrected as the overly perky blonde reached over the counter and pulled her into a hug.

"Same time tomorrow?"

"Yeah, as always."

"Great! See you then!"

Coridan kept smiling until the little bell on the door jingled. She pressed her face into her hands and rubbed the exhaustion out of her eyes.

"Oh, god that girl's going to kill me. I'll be the front page of every paper in L.A. 'Ginger Brit, killed by perky heiress'."

Becca chuckled. "Yeah, I can just see it now," she said sarcastically.

Coridan sighed. She forced herself to power through the rest of her shift. At her lunch break, she and Becca bought hot dogs from a street vender around the corner. They slumped on a bench, relief flooding Coridan's aching feet.

"I can't remember when the store was that busy," Becca groaned, biting into her hot dog.

"It's not the hardest thing I've ever had to do," Coridan responded.

"Oh yeah. You have to deal with Little Miss Daddy's Rich. I don't know how you do it."

"What? Talk to her?"

"No, well, I guess it is a challenge getting a word in there. But I mean how do you not just, like, HIYA," Becca shouted, flinging out her free arm as if she was karate chopping Christy's pretty little neck.

Coridan chuckled. "Come on, give her a break. Not everyone can be as privileged as us."

It was Becca's turn to laugh. "Privileged? Isn't that the funniest thing I've ever heard. I mean, yeah. Not everyone gets to work eleven hour shifts making coffee for every monkey suit and pink princess that walks into the shop."

"You, my friend, should write a book, because that was beautiful."

Becca chuckled. "You sound drunk."

"What? You think that, that just cause I have red hair that I, that I drink? That's prejudice," Coridan stuttered, leaning heavily on Becca who was laughing so hard she was crying.

"It's not the hair that makes me thing you're drunk, Core. It's all in the eyes."

"My eyes?" Coridan said, struggling to not laugh. "You know you can see someone's soul through their eyes? Can you see my soul?"

"No. You're a ginger, you don't have a soul," Becca said, almost accomplishing a straight face.

"Right for the throat, eh? Well, how about I poke at your-"

"Oh don't even start, Coridan!" Becca grinned, wrapping her arms around her cocoa skin.

"I was going to say you're terrible high lights." Becca's jaw dropped, her smile remaining. The two friends laughed harder than they had earlier.

Coridan missed her old friends, her old life. But she had found a good place to wait for them.

(A/N) Hey my lovelies! So, there's Coridan. And a little bit of Percy and Annabeth. And some of the past! Oh, lucky you. Just kidding.


~Cherry Punch