Disclaimer: I do not own PJO
Showing some new kid around camp, was not how Thalia Grace wanted to spend her afternoon. Kids were bratty. Thought they knew everything, or had the right to boss people around. They got snot everywhere, and were just plain messy. They disgusted her. Making matters worse, she had to show the snotty little thing around with Percy Freaking Jackson.
She had bad experiences with children. First off, she had a horrible childhood herself, filled with beer bottles and her drunken mother, bringing home boyfriend after boyfriend home, for a wonderful weekend of 'going at it'. Secondly, whenever she saw a small child, with their innocent gazes, and naive nature, she was forcefully reminded of Jason, before he was killed.
So as a principle, she stayed away from kids. It was much easier that way.
But not only did she have to show one around camp, she had to do it with the one person who she would rather avoid. It wasn't that she didn't like Percy, she actually could tolerate him once she got past his stupidity, and lack of leadership, as well as a few more flaws that she could easily point out.
It was the fact that he reminded her of... you know. The Traitor. No, it wasn't him himself, if that makes sense, the two boys personalities were completely different. One example being that Percy would do anything for his friends, and decline any sort of reward. He, on the other hand, would do this too, yet he always managed to get something out of it for himself, whether it be money, or food. It was the relationship that Percy had with Annabeth. It was almost exactly what her relationship had been with-
Besides, while sons of Zeus were notoriously known for being heartbreakers and players, the previous sons of Poseidon all had a horrible habit of leading young maidens on. And Thalia was not blind, no not at all, she could plainly see how love crazed Annabeth was over Percy Jackson, she was practically tripping over his balls. The daughter of Athena might not have known it yet, but Thalia could see it, plain as rain. Her know it all attitude for one, was just a way to impress the son of the sea.
There were also many incidents that Thalia could point out, where Annabeth and Percy would make contact, when there was no need for it. Holding hands, while leading the other through a crowd, violent tackles while sparring, which usually ended up with Annabeth laying on top of Percy. And, the most commonly used, standing back to back in training. Literally, back to back. Seriously, there was no room at all between the two demigods backsides when they did this.
And though Thalia could see that Percy absolutely adored Annabeth, and with his fatal flaw being loyalty and all, and would never try to hurt or betray her, Thalia was still protective of the daughter of Athena. But that was understandable.
So Thalia looked down on Percy Jackson. Since she didn't really like him in the first place, it wasn't really that hard to notice all of his flaws, like previously mentioned. She didn't like how selfless he was, it was just going to get him killed someday. And him being dead, as much as she hated to acknowledge it, would absolutely, and utterly crush Annabeth. And Thalia didn't like how dark his hair was, contrasting so deeply with his eyes. It made her uneasy, and Thalia Grace did not like to be uneasy.
And although he was good with a sword, he was horrible with a bow and arrow. Her butt was still sore from when he missed the target by ten feet, and had instead nailed her in the ass. Thalia could proudly state after that, Percy had a black eye for an extended amount of time, courtesy of yours truly.
She sneered and she insulted, and really enjoyed ticking him off, because honestly, she wanted him to fight her. She needed to blow off some steam. Thalia called him names a lot too, just not around Annabeth. Never around Annabeth. She called him stupid, and obtuse. Worthless, and a coward. Now, Thalia had been wrong before, but never had she been so wrong as to call Percy Jackson weak.
But she didn't know this until she had to show the new kid around camp with him.
These thoughts pressed on the back of her mind, as she trudged up the grassy Half-Blood Hill, shortly after Percy, muttering and grumbling about how unfair this whole thing was under her breath. She groaned, and clamped her hands over her ears. She could hear the screaming of the child from where she was.
Apparently, The little girl had just arrived about twenty minutes ago, crying and screaming, while flinching whenever somebody went near her. Even her protector could not get her to calm down. The girl, Addison, was her name, hadn't even been running from a monster. No, instead it was her dad. Thalia did not want to deal with this right now.
Chiron had sent her and Percy to go get the six year old to stop whining, and then to give her a tour, and explain the whole 'The gods actually exist, yada yada yada', junk. Again, not how she wanted to spend her afternoon. "Make it stop," she moaned. They could see the kid now, thrashing around, and crying hysterically.
"Shut up, Thalia, you could at least be a little sympathetic". Percy glanced behind him, raising an accusing eyebrow at his cousin.
"Whatever," she grumbled. The two demigods reached the top of the hill, where the satyr was desperately trying to calm Addison down. It wasn't working.
"It's okay," Percy said, dropping to his knees beside the half-goat hybrid. "We can take it from here". The satyr nodded in relief, and hurried away as fast as he could. Thalia knelt next to Percy, scowling.
Percy nudged her roughly. "Stop glaring, you're scaring her". Thalia sighed. Great, she thought sarcastically, Percy had a soft spot for children. He turned towards Addison.
"Hey," he said softly. "I'm Percy, and this is Thalia". She waved half heartedly. The kid was still crying, and she was shrinking away from them in fright. "It's okay, we won't hurt you," he tried. The girl continued to flinch away. Thalia could see Percy was getting a little exasperated, as his hand flew up, to rake his fingers through his hair. The girl fell backwards in pure terror, as his hand was raised.
It didn't go unnoticed by Percy either, and after a moment of looking back and forth between the girl and the position his hand was in, understanding and pain and anger flooded his features.
"Oh gods no", He said softly, slowly lowering his hand. "He hit you, didn't he?"
Now that, Thalia hadn't been expecting. How Percy had managed to figure that out, she had no idea. Maybe it was the bruises and traces of blood that she could faintly make out, that gave it away. The daughter of the thunder god realized there was a slight possibility that he wasn't as dense as she originally thought. Well, Thalia was coming to all sorts of realizations and conclusions today. Three points to Team Zeus!
Addison nodded, her bright blue eyes widening in surprise. Thalia felt a surge of protection, and sympathy wave through her. She glanced at Percy. His eyes were a shade darker than usual, his muscles tense, and his jaw clenched. What puzzled her the most though, was the pure understanding and pain in his eyes and gestures. Something was pressing on him.
"I'm not going to hurt you, I swear," Percy murmured, slowly reaching out to touch Addison.
"How do I know you're not lying?" The unclaimed demigod whimpered, and while trying to remain defiant, Thalia could see her giving into Percy's warm and brotherly touch, slowly but surely believing him.
"I know how you feel", the boy continued, completely ignoring Thalia and her inquiring stare. Addison's eyes widened, and she crawled into Percy's lap, searching for answers as well as comfort. If she hadn't been so completely puzzled, Thalia might have smiled. The two demigods were impeccably cute, sitting like that, after all. Percy smiled sadly, and wrapped his arms around the small girl, rocking her back and forth in an attempt to stop the flow of tears.
Addison still didn't fully believe him though. "And how do I feel?" She tested.
"You're tired, and sore. Everything hurts, and it even pains you to breathe. You can't remember when he didn't hit you, but you know you would do practically anything to make it stop." Percy inhaled sharply, and Addison was looking at him in astonishment, wondering how he could so accurately describe what it was like. Thalia, on the other hand, had her mouth gaping open, as she had an idea of where all this accuracy was coming from, and she didn't like where it was going.
"You're ashamed that you're terrified of him, and such a coward for wincing away and crying, but all you want to do is break down, and sob until no more tears will come out." Percy continued knowingly, staring at the ground. "But at the same time, you know you have to pull it together, and hide all of your feelings, otherwise he's just going to hit you harder".
Addison nodded, and wiped away at her cheeks. "How did you know all that? Are you some kind of wizard?"
Percy laughed tightly, and ruffled her hair. "Nah," he said, shifting his weight. "My stepdad used to hit me too".
Since she was a child of Zeus, the god of the skies, and therefore air, Thalia typically didn't get the wind knocked out her. This, however, was one of those rare exceptions. Percy, who was obviously self conscious and acutely aware of his cousins stunned and rattled stare, as well as her squeak of utter surprise, tried to turn the attention away from himself.
"The important thing," He said, glancing at Thalia, "Is that I can protect you now, and that you're safe. Your dad can't get you anymore".
Addison made no move to get up, but Percy gently moved her onto the ground and stood up, holding out his hand. "Why don't we go get you cleaned up, and then Thalia and I can show you around camp?"
The girl nodded, still in awe that Percy had recovered from his abuse so easily, and allowed Percy to lead her down the hill, with Thalia trailing behind, her mouth gaping open.
This conversation was so not over.
It was when Addison was in the infirmary, did Thalia finally pick up her jaw, and spit some words out.
"Gabe hit you?" She gasped out, and whipping around to face Percy, who was purposely turning away from her. He was leaning against the railing and staring out at the open sea, (no surprise there), his expression somber, and weighed down by memories.
"And all those things you said back there", she continued, frantically pointing back to the grassy hill, where Percy had slipped his secret. "That's what it was like?"
He looked at her, tearing his gaze from the crashing blue waves. His eyes were red rimmed, and bloodshot, glistening with unshed tears. His body was hunched over and small looking, the complete opposite of the cocky Percy she was used to. Thalia would take 'Annoying Percy' instead of 'Abused Percy' anyday.
"Go ahead, Thalia," he said scornfully, glaring at her. "I fully expect you to tell me that I'm weak and a coward for being terrified of a mortal. But I don't want to hear it, so I suggest not wasting your breath".
She gasped, and felt a warm tear slide onto her cheek. "Never," she tried to convince him, though he had nothing to go by, considering how horrible she had always been to him. "Oh my gods, Percy, I am so sorr-"
"I also don't want your pity, Thalia". He said firmly, though friendlier, and more accepting than before. He tried to pull himself together, failing miserably. "I'm fine."
It sounded like he was trying convince himself, rather than his cousin. "No your not."
He bowed his head, giving in, and roughly swiped at his eyes. "But I will be".
"Yeah?" Thalia snapped, reaching out and jerking chin so she could look him in the eye. "And when will that be, huh, Perce? When will you get over it?"
Both demigods looked weighed down, and had faint tear tracks coating their faces. But Percy looked utterly broken. Neither said anything, though in that moment of silence, they came to a mutual connection. Percy folded into Thalia's arms, and they stood for a moment, wallowing in pain together. It was in that moment, when they started to act like a family, an understanding forming between the two.
"I," Thalia choked out, trying to talk. "I had a little brother, before I ran away. His name was Jason. My mom killed him".
She had never told anyone this before, not even him. She felt one tear spill, and then they wouldn't stop coming. She felt Percy's arms tighten around her, and they stood, comforting each other, until no more tears would come. Just like they both had always secretly wanted to do.
"I can be your little brother", Percy whispered, chuckling softly in an attempt to lighten the mood. "Already fit the 'annoying' acquirement".
Now, Thalia had been wrong before, but never had she been so wrong as to call Percy Jackson weak.
It was two days later when Annabeth finally confronted her two best friends about their strange behavior. Ever since they had shown the new Apollo girl, Addison, around camp, they had been... almost civil. Actually, more than that, Percy and Thalia acted like the best of friends. It was really freaking her out.
All three of them had been walking in near Percy's apartment, actually on their way to have dinner with his mom. They had been joking around as usual, when a bleach blonde, skimpy-dressed girl had come up to them.
"Hey," she said, chewing on her gum noisily, while wrapping her hand around Percy's arm, (he was on the end), in what was supposed to be a seductive gesture. Annabeth felt a wave of white hot anger surge in her stomach. Thalia was glaring at the girl, and Percy was just staring at her like she was an alien. "I'm Kayla".
Percy looked at her weird. "And I'm Percy. And we have to go".
He grabbed Annabeth's hand, and started to lead her and Thalia away. Kayla caught up with them quickly though, and tried again.
"Well, I'm new in the city, and I was wondering if you could show me around?" She batted her eyes, and reached for his free hand, he one that wasn't intertwined with Annabeth's. But Thalia, very uncharacteristically, swatted it away, and flung her arm around Percy's shoulders.
"Not going to happen, slut", she snapped, scowling at the girl. "Move along, and find some other guy to hit on".
Thalia raised her eyebrows expectedly, and Percy slapped his hand over his mouth in attempt to keep in his laughter. Kayla tilted her head.
"And who are you?" she asked, the bitchy tone falling from her lips.
"His sister," She said dryly. "Now go away".
Kayla sniffed, and stuck her nose up in the air, before spinning around and stomping away. As soon as she was out of earshot, Percy doubled over laughing, his hand clutching his stomach.
"Oh my gods, Thals," he gasped out, in between breaths. "That was rich, that was- Holy-".
He burst out laughing again, tears streaming down his cheeks in pure amusement. He turned and rested his forehead on Annabeth's shoulder, still gauffing. Both the girls blushed, Annabeth from the sudden contact, and Thalia for his comment.
"Shut up, Perce," she slapped the backside of his head, shocking him slightly. "She looked like she wanted to eat you!"
Percy was silent for a moment, hiding his face against Annabeth, before he mumbled out, "Shut up, Thalia".
It was after dinner that night, when they were riding back to camp in the safe haven's van, when Annabeth said something. Percy was asleep, once again slumped up against her, unfortunately drooling on her shoulder.
"Oh my gods, Annie", Thalia was saying, tossing her silver bracelet into the air and catching it again. "You should have seen your face when that Kayla chick hit on Percy. Hilarious!" She sang. "You looked like you were going to kill her, violently. And Mercilessly".
"Don't call me Annie," The daughter of Athena growled, before defending herself. "And I didn't look like that!"
"You like him". Thalia grinned. "Annabeth Jackson. Hmm, I like the sound of that".
"I do not!" She protested, blushing furiously. Oh, how she thanked her mother Percy was asleep for this particular conversation. "Besides, don't think I didn't catch you calling yourself his sister!"
Thalia didn't sport a blush, much to Annabeth's dismay. She shrugged. "He's my little brother," she said simply. Annabeth raised an eyebrow, but didn't comment. Suddenly, Thalia sighed, and looked somber, a lot sadder than a moment before.
"When we were showing Addison around a couple days ago," She began slowly. "Percy let it slip that Gabe-"
Annabeth finished the sentence for her. "That Gabe abused him". A tear fell from her stormy gray eyes, as Percy shifted, and lay his head in her lap in his sleep. Thalia nodded. "Do you remember that time when you found me crying in his lap? Near the docks?"
Her friends eyes widened. "That wasn't because of a spider was it?" She whispered. Annabeth shook her head, and proceeded to lift up the corner of his shirt. It revealed a jagged scar across his hip. A tear fell out of Thalia's eyes too.
"He kept it from his mom," Annabeth choked out, trying to get the words past a big lump in her throat.
"Well," Thalia whispered, closing her eyes for a moment. "We're just going to have to protect him now, aren't we?"
Annabeth laughed bitterly. "I've been doing that for a couple years now. But I refuse to be called his sister".
Thalia smiled. "That's only because you like him".
She groaned, and for the second time that night, denied it. "I do not!"
But she ran her fingers through Percy's mass of dark hair anyway.
A/N: I hope that was impressive enough, though I'm not satisfied with it. But I figured you guys deserved another chapter, so I filled out some requests. I know this chapter doesn't focus as much on Percy's abuse, but hopefully you guys like it.
And in case some of you couldn't figure it out, He, mentioned in the beginning, was Luke.
Anyway, review, and let me know what you thought.