Zoe Nightshade was not a happy camper.
Scratch that. She was the most irritable, miserable, angry, depressed and overall unpleasant camper in the history of Camp Half-Blood. Why you ask? Well that would be young Perseus Jackson's fault. Or at least that was how she was viewing things. She turns down immortality and her life in the hunt and then Percy has to go and get himself kidnapped by gods only know what powerful being.
That was seven months earlier and Zoe was really starting to get pissed off now.
The only people who were able to stand to be around her were the people who were almost as affected by his disappearance as she was. That would be Percy's little brother and sister, Nico and Bianca, and some of Percy's best friends; Annabeth, Beckendorf, Silena, Michael Yew and Katie Gardner. Almost everyone was affected by his disappearance but those were the ones who were doing everything within their power to help find him.
The most frustrating part? The gods had apparently chosen this as the best time to close down Olympus for gods only know why. Not just shut down the city of Olympus but actually cut off all connection between the Olympians and the outside world. Dionysus had vanished from Camp Half-Blood which had a lot of campers celebrating but it only added to the list of reasons why Zoe wanted to strangle someone.
Even Percy's own father Hades had cut himself off from his children, allowing them access to Underworld but blocking off his palace and refusing to let Nico or Bianca inside to talk to him.
Zoe had taken Annabeth and Bianca and tracked down the hunters only to find Artemis had left them on their own, something she never did once in the two thousand years Zoe was by her side as a huntress. Zoe tried to ask Rachel for a quest to find him but just received a confused stare from the ginger haired mortal huntress which resulted in a few colorful words directed at her courtesy of Zoe. She later apologized to her former sister as she knew that the oracle was not an on-demand service for finding missing demigods; so Zoe's anger simply shifted to Percy and all of Olympus as a whole.
Whatever was going on with Percy's disappearance, it was becoming clear that the Olympians were involved and that did not bode well for Zoe and her hopes of locating him anytime soon.
The one positive that came out of the trip was informing Thalia of Percy's disappearance. She was also rather upset about her cousin being taken and suspicious how it coincided almost perfectly with Lady Artemis leaving her hunters leaderless. She decided the hunt's new mission was to track down Percy Jackson as she was now the de facto leader of the hunt and their missions were now decided on by her. The hunters were surprisingly supportive of her decision. They had a lot of respect for Percy after what he had done on Olympus for not just the campers but their fallen sisters as well.
The monument created by Annabeth, which was unveiled not a week before Percy vanished, had been breathtaking. To see their sisters immortalized for eternity in a courtyard of Olympus had brought a number of tears to the usually stoic and hardened maidens of Artemis. Even Artemis herself was witnessed to have tears in her eyes at the sight of life-like marble tributes to her hunters, all depicted with their bows out defending Olympus to their last breaths.
Zoe, Annabeth and Bianca were forced to return to Camp Half-Blood empty handed once again after another failed attempt to get help finding Percy.
When they returned to camp, Zoe made a beeline for the Artemis cabin without a word to anyone, her frustrations started to overwhelm her. She threw herself down on her bunk as she tried to quell her growing anger. After several minutes of breathing deeply to calm down, she drifted off to sleep.
Zoe found herself on Olympus, in the courtyard that Percy forced the gods to let be made. The reminder of her missing boyfriend only brought a sharp pain to her heart as she cursed Morpheus for forcing her to miss him even in her dreams. If she ever came across the god of dreams she vowed to put a few arrows in his backside for doing this to her after Percy had gotten him a pardon from the Olympians after he joined the Titans.
As Zoe walked around the statues, she came to the one that depicted her, Annabeth and Percy standing over Luke's body as Annabeth clutched Luke's hand. Percy and Zoe stood beside them, side by side, Zoe with her bow out and Percy with Anaklusmos in hand. Zoe couldn't help but chuckle when she remembered Annabeth's face after Percy made her remake the statue. The original had had Zoe and Percy holding hands as they stood but Percy claimed that if he was going to have to have a statue despite his wishes not to, he refused to have him and Zoe look like a couple on a date; demanding a dignified image of them at the end of a long war. She couldn't help but agree that the remade statue was much better. Although she loved Percy and she knew he loved her, they were not a very affectionate couple, at least in public; something that made her love him even more as she wasn't big on public displays of affection.
She sighed as she thought about how much she missed Percy. This was supposed to be their time to relax and enjoy some down time together. Two great months of dating and then gone in the blink of an eye.
"Beautiful isn't it?" A feminine voice said from behind Zoe.
On instinct, Zoe reached for her bow only to find herself weaponless as this was only a dream.
"Relax Zoe; you are here because I brought you here." The woman said.
Zoe eyed the woman carefully. She had brown hair underneath a goat-skin cloak that had its hood pulled up hiding her face from Zoe's view.
Zoe's eyes narrowed at the woman as a look of realization crossed her face. The woman looked exactly as Bianca and Nico had described Percy's abductor.
"YOU! You took Percy!" She screamed.
The woman calmly held up a hand as Zoe took a step towards her and Zoe froze in her place.
"Calm yourself Zoe," the woman said sternly before her form shimmered and Zoe's eyes widened as the Queen of the Heavens stood before in all her glory.
"Lady Hera," Zoe gasped. "Why? Percy has never been anything but respectful to you. Why would you take him?"
A slightly pained look crossed Hera's eyes before it vanished and was replaced by a determined one.
"That is why I am here Zoe. I am no enemy to you or to young Perseus." Hera explained.
Zoe glared at the goddess who met Zoe's glare with her own, "I had no choice but to take Perseus."
Zoe looked at the Queen of the Gods expectantly making Hera sigh.
"Another war is coming Zoe. A war worse than the Titan War. My arrogant husband thinks he can simply close Olympus and the problem will disappear on its own. I had no choice but to turn to our most powerful demigod. If anyone can lead us through this, it is Perseus." Hera explained.
Zoe looked at Hera confused for a minute before her eyes widened, "A second Giant War?"
Hera nodded slowly, "Yes but you must keep that information to yourself. You must swear to it or I will have to wipe your memory of our conversation. I have a plan and it is completely necessary that none of of the other demigods know until the time is right."
Zoe looked at the goddess confused but Hera just shook her head, "I cannot tell you. I am here only to let you know you have a long road before you can be reunited with young Perseus again. If you follow my instructions you will find him sooner rather than later."
"What? Why can't you just tell me where he is?" Zoe growled.
"The time is not right. The timing of my plan must be perfect. In three days you must be at the Grand Canyon. Look for a demigod with one shoe. He will be with a second demigod and they need to get back to Camp Half-Blood safely. They will be your key to finding Perseus again." Hera said sternly.
Zoe was about to argue but Hera held up her hand, "Remember my words, I will be watching you. If you tell anyone of our meeting, I will wipe it from your mind and whoever you tell and you will be on your own to find Perseus again. I am sorry for the heartache this causes but I believe Perseus is the key to Olympus' survival yet again."
Before Zoe could reply Hera snapped her fingers and Zoe found herself sitting up in her bed in the Artemis cabin at Camp Half-Blood. She began cursing angrily as she thought about Hera's words. She would do as the goddess instructed but these two demigods had better be the key to finding Percy again or there would be Hades to pay for everyone involved.
Zoe flew through the air slightly ahead of the chariot being drawn by two Pegasus. Inside the chariot were her friends Annabeth Chase and Charles Beckendorf, one of the few males Zoe could tolerate for more than a few minutes at a time. She also appreciated the fact that Beckendorf and Annabeth had been the only two who didn't question her reasoning for being at the Grand Canyon on this specific day. Due to Hera's warning, she was forced to say that she just had a strong feeling they would find answers about Percy there.
Zoe knew both her friends were well aware that she was holding something back from them but also trusted her enough to accept her answer and join her on the mission. Zoe looked down from her place atop Percy's all-black Pegasus Blackjack as she could see the Grand Canyon coming into view a little ways up. She had initially planned to ride in the chariot with the other two but Blackjack seemed to know they were looking for Percy as he began to throw a fit inside the stables at camp until Zoe tentatively climbed on the Pegasus' back. There had been multiple injuries to campers over the past few months from trying to mount him but Blackjack made it clear he was no one's Pegasus but Percy's. It did comfort Zoe a bit to know she was apparently the only other person Blackjack would allow to ride him, although she missed Percy being there to tell her what Blackjack was trying to say.
As they approached their destination, Zoe peered down into the canyon where she could see some sort of storm that was seemingly centered inside the tourist area. She looked back to Beckendorf and Annabeth and pointed as they quickly directed their chariot in that direction.
Zoe leaned down to Blackjack's ear but the Pegasus apparently knew what she was thinking as he went into a dive straight towards the heart of the storm. By the time they reached the ground, they saw a blonde haired boy with one shoe on drive a golden gladius through a storm spirit. A second storm spirit shot a bolt of lightning at him but he absorbed the lightning in his blade before dispatching a second storm spirit with another quick swipe of his blade.
As the second storm spirit dissolved, a satyr carrying a small Latino boy on his back jumped up from the side of the cliff as he stood between the blonde kid and the third storm spirit.
The storm spirit ignored the satyr as it glared at the blonde harshly, "Who are you demigod?" It hissed.
The blonde kid just looked at him confused, "Um… I don't know actually."
The spirit narrowed its eyes at him but before he could do anything the Satyr pulled out a club and charged at him, "Die you little punk!" The satyr growled as he tackled the spirit. Unfortunatley for the over zealous satyr, his attempt to tack the venti failed as he went right through him before the storm spirit turned back to the blonde kid, "This isn't over half-blood. My mistress will have your head and that of all demigods." He growled before stepping towards the demigod only for the satyr to grab the storm spirit from behind.
The monster growled before shooting off into the air with the satyr hanging on for dear life until the two disappeared from view.
Zoe jumped off Blackjack and approached the two confused demigods, "Who are you two and where is Percy?"
Both demigods looked at each other and then back at Zoe with looks of confusion.
"I'm Jason and this is Leo but we don't know any Percy." He said honestly.
Zoe glared at the duo as Annabeth and Beckendorf came up beside her.
"Whoa! Are those flying horses?" The Latino kid, Leo, asked excitedly.
"They're called Pegasus." Beckendorf explained. "Since you two can obviously see them, I think you need to come with us."
"Whoa, wait a minute," Jason said putting a hand out to stop Leo who was about to go with them without a second thought. "Who are you and why should we go anywhere with you?"
Annabeth looked at him sympathetically, "Because you guys are like us. Trust us, we promise we mean you no harm but it's clear that you're demigods and we come from a place for demigods, Camp Half-Blood."
Jason's eyes widened but at the same time, this all seemed vaguely familiar to him.
Leo on the other hand was in shock, "Demigod? As in half-gods?"
Zoe rolled her eyes, "Yes. I don't know about you, but I am quite sure that this one," she said with a distasteful look at Jason, "is a son of Zeus."
Jason looked at her confused, "Wait. Don't you mean Jupiter?"
Zoe's eyes shot wide open while Annabeth and Beckendorf looked at him confused.
"What do you know boy?" Zoe asked harshly.
Jason looked at her, confused by her anger, "Nothing, seriously. That name just popped into my head."
Zoe's eyes narrowed before she looked at Leo, "And what about you?"
Leo paled a bit before he smiled flirtatiously at Zoe, "I don't know anything either beautiful, but I'm all ears if you want to teach me."
Zoe's eyes flashed with anger before she pulled out a hunting knife and took a step towards Leo. Before she could make him regret his words, Beckendorf pulled Leo away while Annabeth put a hand on Zoe's shoulder.
"Relax Zoe, we'll find him. That kid, Leo, doesn't know any better." Annabeth said trying to quell her friend's anger.
Zoe growled under her breath before turning back to Jason, "Let's go son of Zeus. We need to get back to camp." She said before spinning on her heel and jumping onto Blackjack's back and taking off without another word.
Jason stared at her retreating form confused and slightly pissed off before Annabeth put a hand on his arm, "Sorry about Zoe, she has been a little difficult to deal with since her boyfriend went missing."
Jason raised an eyebrow, "That Percy guy? I feel bad for him."
Annabeth chuckled a bit, "He's the only one who can handle her. She spent a long, long time hating men until she met him. She still isn't the biggest fan of them but she was getting better before Percy was taken."
Jason raised an eyebrow, "Taken?"
Annabeth nodded sadly, "Out of his cabin at camp a few months ago. No one has seen him since. We were here looking for him. Zoe said we would find answers here and when we didn't find him, she was a little upset. Come to camp, I promise to explain more on the ride."
Jason nodded, "Okay. This Percy guy, is he a friend of yours?"
Annabeth nodded sadly again, "One of my best friends. We've been looking for months but found nothing. Now come on, I'll explain on the way." She said offering him her hand.
Jason took it, both their faces turning a bit red when he did as she led him to the chariot.
Zoe was far ahead of Annabeth and Beckendorf who were bringing the two demigods with them as she cursed to herself about the whole mission. She already disliked both demigods; the little Latino boy was everything she despised in men and the son of Zeus or Jupiter looked far too much like his half-brother Heracles for her taste. She no longer cared about what Heracles did to her but she would rather not have to look at his face or a similar one on a daily basis.
The fact she didn't have Percy with her certainly did not make things easier. But she now had a bad feeling about where Percy was. This was what Hera meant by finding a link to Percy though. Hera must have known she was well aware of the Romans and their camp after spending so many centuries with Artemis. She and Diana had been to the Roman camp occasionally when it couldn't be avoided.
But now she had an idea where Percy was and she was going to get him back and soon.
As she came into camp, she walked out of the stables just as the campers began to gather around the chariot with the two new demigods. Before anyone could say anything, a flaming hammer appeared over Leo's head as he looked up at the image confused.
"What is that? What's going on?" Leo asked confused.
Beckendorf smiled at him, "It means you're my half-brother Leo. A son of Hephaestus."
Leo raised an eyebrow, "The forge dude?"
Beckendorf laughed, "Yea the forge dude. Now come on, I will show you to your new cabin along with your new brothers and sisters." He said as he led a confused Leo away from group and towards the Hephaestus cabin.
Annabeth led Jason towards the big house to meet with Chiron as Zoe started to follow. As she did, she caught a glint of silver out of the corner of her eye in the woods to the left. She looked at the spot until she saw a small familiar auburn haired girl in a silver huntress outfit lock eyes with her before turning and walking into the woods.
Zoe looked around to make sure no one else saw her as Artemis' message was clear that she wanted to speak to her in private.
Zoe snuck her way into the woods until she found her former mistress waiting for her at Zeus' fist. Zoe did not bow but simply looked at the goddess expectantly.
Artemis looked at her friend sympathetically, "I understand you are angry with me Zoe but I need you to listen as my time is limited."
"Percy is at Camp Jupiter isn't he? I'm going to get him." Zoe said sternly.
Artemis shook her head, "I came here to tell you that you cannot do that Zoe. No one knows of Hera's plan but me. Perseus is not at the Roman Camp yet but he will be soon."
Zoe's eyes narrowed, "Where has he been then?"
Artemis bit her lip a little nervously, "Asleep on Olympus, hidden away from all the other gods, even his father does not know where he is."
"What? Why would you do that to me Artemis? I thought you were my friend!" Zoe yelled.
Artemis winced a bit, "It wasn't supposed to be like this. The plan was supposed to happen months ago but Hera had trouble when the Jason boy was sent on a quest that took a few months. She was forced to keep Perseus asleep until Jason completed his quest. When he did, she took him and erased his memories. She tried to do the same with Perseus but had trouble. He has a strong mind and did not let go of his memories very easily."
Zoe's eyes flashed with betrayal, "You took his memories of me?"
Artemis nodded slowly, "Mostly. He will remember you but not about your relationship. His mind is strong and his connection to you is as well. We tried to erase all memory of you but his mind was too stubborn and we had to settle for what we did. When he wakes, he know you are important to him but he will not remember your time together."
"Why would you do this to me? I thought you were happy for me?" Zoe asked bitterly.
Artemis' shoulders slumped, "I am and I am even more convinced now that Perseus would never hurt you but this had to be done. It is the only way to prevent the destruction of Olympus. My father was going to doom the world had Hera and I not intervened."
Zoe scowled, "So Percy is on Olympus now?"
Artemis nodded, "Yes and I am about to bring him to the Lupa after I leave you. But I am here to tell you that you have your own path to travel before you can go to him."
"And that is?" Zoe asked.
"Hera has been captured. After dropping Jason off near the Grand Canyon, she was captured by some part of Gaia's army. You must have Jason seek a quest from the oracle. The hunters will arrive tomorrow at camp and you must be on that quest. If you want to find Percy, that quest is the only way." Artemis explained seriously.
Zoe ground her teeth in frustration but she knew Artemis wouldn't do this if there was another way.
"Fine. I will do as you say but you better make sure Percy is safe." She demanded.
Artemis nodded, "I think we both know Perseus can more than handle himself. I have no doubt he will gain the Roman's respect quickly."
Zoe nodded before stepping up to her former mistress and pulling her into a hug, "I am sorry for being angry and disrespectful."
Artemis smiled as she hugged her friend back, "I expect nothing less from the greatest huntress I have ever had. I know this has been difficult but I promise that if I had had another choice I would have taken it. Just be patient and follow my instructions and you will be reunited with Perseus.."
Zoe smiled and stepped back, "Thank you my lady."
Artemis nodded before vanishing in a flash of silver light. Zoe shook her head and started her trek back to camp, feeling grateful she knew Percy was safe. Her smile grew as she remembered Artemis saying Percy refused to let all memory of her be taken away, "I'm coming Percy and there will be Hades to pay for all this stress you put me through." She muttered as she reached the edge of the woods.
In Sonoma Valley, California, a pack of wolves sat apparently in waiting outside the ruins of a burned down house. The largest of these wolves stood in front as a flash of silver light appeared in front of the pack revealing a woman who looked around sixteen years old. Her eyes were the color of the moon and glowed silver with power. In her arms was the sleeping form of a man, larger than the woman herself but she carried him with ease.
The largest wolf began to glow until in her place stood a beautiful woman with black hair and overly large canine teeth. She wore an outfit similar to the silver-eyed woman as she bowed slightly, "Lady Diana," the woman said respectfully. "I assume the boy is why you asked me to meet you here?"
Diana nodded, "Yes Lupa, I assume you are aware of Juno's plans for the boy and your missing Praetor Jason Grace."
Lupa nodded, "Indeed but I must say that I am surprised to find you looking after a male demigod."
Diana smiled slightly, "This one is…. different. He was the one who defeated Saturn from the great prophecy."
Lupa nodded as she stepped forward to inspect the demigod in the goddess' arms. She stepped back a little surprised.
"He smells of the sea and of death," Lupa said in shock before looking at Percy confused, "and if I am not mistaken, he smells a bit like flowers."
Diana bit back a chuckle and simply nodded, "Like I said, different. He was born a son of Neptune but raised and adopted by Pluto and Proserpina. He spent years in training when growing up in the Underworld by the greatest heroes to every live."
Lupa's eyes widened, "He radiates a hidden power and it is strong; stronger than any demigod I have met."
Diana nodded, "He is also the champion of Vesta. Her first and only champion."
Lupa shook her head in disbelief, "He will do well in my camp. I assume the boy respects authority?"
Diana flinched a bit, "He does but he also does not allow himself to be pushed around. If treated with respect, he will return it. But he has stood up to Jupiter himself in the past when he felt he or those close to him were being mistreated."
"Courage will serve him well in Rome." Lupa said looking at Percy's sleeping form.
Diana nodded, "Thank you my friend but there is another reason I am here as well."
Lupa nodded for her to continue.
"My former lieutenant Zoe," Diana said slowly. "This boy managed to capture her heart. He will remember her a bit but he cannot be told of their relationship. Their bond is strong and he will leave to find her if he remembers her fully."
Lupa gasped, "You allow him to live after leading a hunter astray?"
Diana smiled a bit, "The situation is complicated but yes. I also consider him a friend and expect that he will be treated as such."
Lupa nodded slowly, "Of course my lady."
Diana smiled, "I will leave him with you. He should wake in the next day."
Lupa nodded, "I understand."
"Take care my friend. The war approaches sooner than we expected and for the survival of Olympus and all demigods, we must be ready to meet the challenge." She said before vanishing in a silver light after setting Percy down in the Wolf House.
Lupa eyed the demigod carefully, "I hope you are every bit the warrior Diana says you are. You may be the only hope for the survival of Rome." She said before glowing and changing back into a wolf and leaving Percy with a few wolf guards as he slumbered.
A.N: This is more of a teaser to set up the story. I have yet to develop a definite plan for the story so it may be a few days before I update again. I have not read HoO latley so my memory of it is a bit rusty. I hope this was an okay beginning. If it isn't I may rewrite it. Let me know what you think.
I made a few obvious changes but laid out the same general plot from Heroes of Olympus. It will change but I thought for now, the canon serves as a good road map for the story. It may not be the best opening chapter but have faith, I have good ideas for this story, just let me get to them.
Now don't forget to review so I know what you guys think. Thanks for reading.