for want of a peaceful night
A PJO oneshot
Note: The Percy Jackson/Heroes of Olympus characters belong to Rick Riordan, not to me. Oh, and this pairing was discovered by my pal, BlueMango, so it'd be nice to give her a little mention if you write them! Thanks! Read, review, and enjoy!
The times when he's awake, he doesn't feel very useful. What was his dad thinking, having demigod children of his own? There's no point to him, Clovis thinks, or to his siblings. All they do is sleep. They're no good in fights, not really, not like Ares' or Hermes' or even Demeter's kids.
It turns out, though, that there's one power that the Hypnos kids have that becomes desperately needed.
It's useful after the Titan War, sadly. Even for those who escaped without physical harm. Once the gods are sworn to claim their kids by age thirteen, a host of new cabins emerges and Clovis finds a home in Camp Half-Blood with the others. He gets along well with the other demigods. Or maybe he should say that he gets along okay with them.
Someone has the idea to suggest that maybe the Hypnos kids can ease the minds of those who can't sleep, those who are tormented by nightmares of the war. Clovis allows the use of their powers in such a manner, but Chiron doesn't like it, the use of so much magic. His argument asserts that part of being a demigod is dealing with one's mortal side, as well. And so the Hypnos children are banned from giving any more favors. And again, Clovis feels useless.
That is, until sweet, goody-goody Miranda Gardiner comes and asks for his help not in the quiet of night but in the tumult of day. "Um, Clovis, could you come with me tonight? I have a favor to ask." She looks terribly embarrassed to ask him, but Miranda is a pretty girl, and Clovis has never minded helping a pretty girl.
But things get murky when Clovis is ushered to the Demeter cabin that night and Miranda asks him to get Katie to sleep.
"She hasn't been the same since—" Miranda fidgets. "Well, it wasn't just the war." She glances at him, her brown eyes worried. "You know the Dionysus cabin, and Pollux?"
"Of course," Clovis replies with a yawn. "He's the only one there."
"He wasn't always. He lost his twin brother, Castor, shortly before the war, here at camp."
For once, Clovis' eyes widen and he's almost fully awake. He's learned a lot about the camp since coming to it—he knows a lot of things—and he knows about the Battle of the Labyrinth. He knows someone named "Castor" had died there, but he hadn't known before that it had been Pollux's twin. "What does that have to do with anything?"
Miranda fights a yawn of her own. "Ugh, look…don't try to put me to sleep, Clovis," she says softly. "But, Katie—help her. She was very close to those two, especially Castor. She—" Miranda bites her tongue and doesn't say more. "It's been worse since the war. She can barely sleep. So please, do something, anything."
Clovis raises his eyebrows. "But Chiron said not to—"
"I won't tell Chiron if you don't." Miranda looks desperate for her sister to get some help.
His stare drifts to Katie, who is tucked into her bunk with a pained expression on her face. There are fresh tear tracks on her cheeks. He looks back to Miranda. "I can try."
Relief floods her face. "Thank you." She yawns again, but she manages to climb into her own bed before she collapses for the night.
And Clovis sits on the edge of Katie's bed and touches the older girl's brow—and just like that, her face is a blank slate. For a moment, Clovis thinks that Katie is pretty, too, but in a different way from her sister.
Clovis thinks nothing of it when he gets up and returns to his cabin for some well-earned rest.
Miranda comes back rather often, imploring Clovis to use his magic on Katie again and again.
He doesn't mind. It's not a power that drains him, because it's not as though he's trying to be his dad and is trying to make many people sleep at once.
Besides, he makes the mistake of telling Miranda that he'll watch over Katie. "I don't have a problem with it," he tells her.
Miranda eyes him as though she's trying to figure out what's running through his mind. Eventually she gives up and says, "All right." She trusts Clovis, but most of the campers do. He's a trustworthy guy.
So more and more often, Katie's face is clear. Her cheeks are dry and she sleeps like a normal person…and she's none the wiser as to why that is, for Clovis is gone every morning before she wakes.
"I'm feeling a lot better these days," Clovis overhears Katie tell her sister at breakfast on the one day he didn't oversleep.
Miranda's face lights up. "That's great to hear!"
"What's that?" Travis Stoll interrupts. He winks at Katie. "Have you been unable to sleep, tormented by thoughts of me?"
Connor, his brother, appears and snorts, and not even Miranda or Katie can keep her giggles quiet. Where he sits off to the side in the shade, Clovis chuckles to himself, too, because the Stolls are ridiculously full of themselves. But at least they're showing their concern for her, and Clovis is glad that there are people who care about her.
Clovis pauses in his meal, that thought catching him off-guard. He knows how much he loves it here at the camp, and he knows how much he likes everyone at camp. But he hasn't before considered actually caring so much about someone or anyone at all. Yes, he's got two half-brothers and a half-sister who share his cabin, but…
Clovis is gone every morning before she wakes. Thankfully no one ever asks him where he's been, and Miranda never questions why he leaves.
Part of him wishes that Katie would wake up sometime to see the sleepy prince that Clovis has become for her. Part of him wishes that Katie would ask him what he was doing there. Part of him wishes that Katie knew he was helping her and ask him why and maybe even give him the answer, because he's not exactly sure why.
But the other part of him wishes for the comfort of anonymity. That unsung hero in him is the one who goes every morning before she wakes.
He heads to the Big House for a meeting, and all cabin counselors are mandated to attend. Outside the door, though, he hears two people talking.
"Hmm?" Miranda asks. "What do you mean?" Is she alone? She doesn't sound alone, but it doesn't sound as though there are too many others with her.
"I mean, my crying…" It's Katie speaking. "It just—it seemed unending. But I've been regaining my strength." There's a pause. "Did you do something, Miranda?"
Miranda whistles. Hmm. Maybe she's a bad liar. "No, I didn't do anything."
"Look. It's not me. I swear."
Katie frowns, Clovis guesses, and then she sighs. "Weird… I just, I feel as though someone's been helping me. I haven't had nightmares for weeks."
"Maybe the gods are finally taking pity on us kids," Miranda says, and suddenly the subject has wide scope. Clovis sees that as the signal to enter.
When he does, he passes Katie, whose face lights up with a bright smile. "Oh, Clovis. Hi!"
He nods and gives her a sleepy smile, because that's all he can offer her when she's awake and looking at him with those beautiful green eyes that are the color of soft grassy fields, the kind perfect for napping… He looks away, missing Miranda's conspiratorial wink.
But he also misses the flush of Katie's cheeks that disappears when the others arrive and returns when she and Clovis are the last to leave. She says nothing more to him, but she walks to dinner alongside him by a happy chance.
And it doesn't occur to him that maybe, piece by piece, Katie is starting to figure it out, is starting to give a face to her nighttime knight.
This turned out sweeter than I thought it would… :') I really like Clovis in this kind of role, because I feel he has a lot to offer in the PJO fandom. And to be there for Katie… I totally ship Katie/Castor and Clovis/Lacy (pairing credit to BlueMango—mention her if you write them, thanks! :') ), but I quite like this Clatie pairing…kinda 'cuz I dislike Tratie… ;P BUT. This seems like a nice beginning to something fresh. -w-
Lastly, if you like my oneshot, my other PJO fics, or the Clatie pairing, check out my pal, BlueMango's, stories. You can find a link to her both in my profile and in my fav authors list. She has a way with minor characters, too! :D *end advert* ;]
Thanks so much for reading, and please do review!