Okay, so this is my first time writing for anyone other than my sister, but I wanted to try it. Plus, I'm so frustrated about the long wait for Blood of Olympus to come out that I wanted to write me own as a way to distract myself. I know the first chapter is kinda short, but I wanted to get it posted. And as I said, it's my first time writing. Anyway, I probably won't post anything else until I get a few reviews, so PLEASE, please review!
The ship rocks gently on the waves, a soothing motion that threatens to lull Percy to sleep. He tries to push away his exhaustion, but he's fighting a losing battle. He hasn't slept in days. Every time he closes his eyes, visions of Damasen and Bob overtake his mind.
Annabeth doesn't seem to have any such problems. She has nightmares, but they don't prevent her from sleeping.
Percy's okay with that. Annabeth needs her rest.
He sighs and runs his fingers through his hair, then starts to walk around the deck of the ship in an effort to stay awake. Festus creaks and whirs quietly into the night. Leo, for once, isn't up here. He's downstairs, getting some much-deserved rest. Percy only wishes he could do the same.
He looks up at the stars, twinkling brightly far above. A lump builds in his throat as he remembers Bob's last request.
"Tell the sun and the stars hello for me."
Percy forces his emotions down. He can't afford to get distracted.
The past few days have been rather uneventful. The sea is quiet, and a strong wind speeds them on their way. They haven't been attacked, not once. That's part of why everyone except for Percy is asleep.
But Percy knows the good luck can't last for much longer. With them, it never does. So he keeps watch. He's pretty sure no one else knows he's awake, and he'd rather keep it that way. Otherwise they'd all insist on him going back to his bunk and getting some sleep. But he can't do that. He's to afraid of what he'll see if he closes his eyes. And if he can't sleep, he might as well be making himself useful.
A slight sound behind him causes him to turn.
"Percy? How long have you been up?" Annabeth asks, still rubbing the sleep from her eyes.
"Not long." He lies. Annabeth sees right through it. She walks up to him and wraps her arms around his neck, nestling her head against his chest. He hugs her back tightly, glad to have someone to hold on to.
"It's okay to sleep, Percy. No one will hold it against you if something happens." She says, her voice muffled.
"It's not that." He hesitates, unsure how to explain.
She looks up at me. "Dreams?"
He nods wordlessly. "I just can't get that place out of my head," he tells her, knowing she'll know exactly what place he means, "and Damasen, and Bob. And Tartarus. Especially Tartarus." His eyes are haunted as he confesses this.
Annabeth sighs softly. "I know, Percy. I know. But you aren't going to be any use to anyone if you don't sleep. And you haven't really had a real chance to sleep since before we fell. You need to rest."
"Yeah, I know. I guess you're right." He's silent for a few seconds, then he smiles. "At least I won't have to worry about being called lazy by Coach Hedge."
Annabeth smiles back at him and reaches up to brush a few stray strands of hair out of his face. "You won't get off that easily, Seaweed Brain. I'm still here to call you lazy."
Now he grins. "But you won't, because you'll be sleeping too. Right, Wise Girl?"
"Right." She agrees. "But I might call you lazy anyway. Now come on, Seaweed Brain, let's go get some sleep." She turns away to start walking back to her bunk, but Percy pulls her into a long, deep kiss that lasts far longer than it would have if Coach Hedge was still there.
When they part, Annabeth smiles up at him, and he looks down into her stormy grey eyes, feeling happy with her there by his side.
They walk, hand in hand, down to Annabeth's room, and there they lie on their backs and stare up at the ceiling. Annabeth cuddles close to Percy's side, but sleep doesn't come easily for either of them. They each listen to the other's quiet breathing, until the reassuring sound of it lulls them to sleep.
Annabeth falls asleep before him, but it isn't long before Percy finally gives in to the welcoming folds of darkness...
...and falls directly into a dream.
Percy now stands in the middle of a huge room, so dimly lit that even with his demigod powers, it's difficult for him to see the walls, and especially the ceiling, which arches high above his head.
He knows immediately that he's underwater. He can sense it. And he's obviously somewhere pretty deep. But why-
His thoughts are interrupted by a loud, booming, cruel voice with an unmistakeable tone of command. It comes from a shadowy throne that rests on a raised dais at the back of the enormous room, but Percy can't make out the figure that sits upon it.
"Thalassa! I thought you would never show up, my dear."
"Why wouldn't I, dear husband?" Percy turns towards the new voice. This time, he can see the person the voice belongs to. Sort of.
A woman with long, flowing hair and an elegant bearing glides toward the throne. More than that, he can't really tell, because her form keeps wavering. One minute, he can just see her, and the next, she disappears. It's almost as if she were made of water...Percy's eyes widen as he realizes that's exactly what it is.
"No reason. It's just been so long since you've visited." The man sounds almost bored as he says this.
"Well, you can hardly blame me. It's so dark and dreary down here. I much prefer it where it's light and colorful. Honestly, you really should see about getting some sort of light down here." Thalassa answers.
"I'll keep that in mind. Now, what new do you bring?" Asks the man.
"The demigods are traveling to Athens by way of the Ionian Sea. You were right when you said they wouldn't risk traveling across land anymore, even if they wouldn't technically be touching the ground."
"Yes, yes, well, I do know what I'm talking about, dearest. Anything else?"
"Ceto's asked permission to send one of her pets after them. It'd be the perfect distraction while we kidnapped the boy."
A chill runs through Percy as he hears her words. The demigods they're talking about can only mean everyone on the Argo II. And he ran into Ceto before, in Atlanta. But which boy on the ship are they talking about?
"Hm. Yes, it'd be a good distraction, but she'll have to make sure she restrains it from killing them. At least not all of them, and especially not the boy. He's mine."
"I'll make sure to tell her that. Or would you like me to just tell her no?"
"Tell her yes. But make sure she knows what I said. If she does anything to displease me, she'll be punished. That incident in Atlanta already put her on probation."
"I'll see to it that she understands. Now, if that's all, I'd best be going."
"That's all." At his words, the woman's form dissolves into bubbles. It's quiet for some time before the man suddenly speaks into the silent room.
"That's right, Poseidon. The Ionian is my territory, and only I control it. Only two of those demigods are ever going to reach Athens, and then it will only be so their blood can wake Gaea once and for all. I'll take back what is rightfully mine and reclaim the sea. And I'll start by killing that upstart son of yours, Perseus Jackson!"
A thrill of fear races down Percy's spine. They were talking about him.
And that's all that he has time to think before the dream swirls away.
So tell me what you think.