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Sep. 22nd, 2020 09:20 pm
lightningthief: (hrm bored)
Messages go here, folks...
lightningthief: (my little giraffe friend)
How many times do I have to tell myself to not think about it?

I know I'm not supposed to think about how Ian's love has been spurned. I know I'm not supposed to think about how quickly and easily Wanderer decided to start messing around with some guy that suddenly popped up out of nowhere. I know I'm not supposed to obsess over how Ian's life could be spent loveless like mine had been.

I mean, my life hasn't been loveless. I've had Aphrodite. For a bit. At the end. I finish my thoughts aloud, "...even though her real love is Hephasteus...."

It's not... my thought's have been circling and circling around crap like this, and it's been making me moody. I know Aprhrodite's noticed. She's way too perceptive on my mood. I've put up a good nothing-is-wrong act, but she's not fooled. If I can just stall her some more, maybe I'll just get over it and we can all move on.

Wanderer certainly has moved on. That's for sure.

I pick up Secretarius, and ask him, "Did Wanderer really love him? Did she love him at all? Does anyone really, really love anyone for real?" I'm alone, sitting on our bed. Secretarius is Aphrodite's stuffed animal, a horse. "Sometimes, Horsie, I really think love is all a crock of shit. You know...horse shit? You know all about that, don't you, Horsie?"

I tip it back as if it was rearing up and have it answer back to me with a "Neiiiigh!"

"See how desperate I am, Horse? I'm talking my troubles out to a dumb stuffed animal like you. It's a start, though, right? You have to help your ol' pal Luke not think about her. Even though she's from a race better than mankind will ever be, she still drops me.. er, him... drops him like a lead weight for some dope she's met for about ten seconds. What do you think about that kind of horse shit, Mr. Horse?"

I make the little thing gallop up my leg and say in a stupid voice, "You suck at love, and every single one of your lives is gonna be cursed, dude! Screw you! Neiiiigh!"

I reply to the little horse in an overly calm voice, "You're right, Horsey. Guess I'll just have to suck it up. Like I always do. I'm not bitter. Luke, son of Hermes, is never, ever bitter."

I have the horse answer back. "You're a fucking liar! Neiiiigh!!!"

"Yes, that's right, Horse. I am a liar. I am a bitter liar. And, you know what bitter liars do when they can't make things go their way? They order miserable little cretins like you to get eaten by their drakon."

"Screw you. You don't have a drakon anymore! Neiiigh!"

"That's right. So, I open this portal to Tartarus, where I cast you in to burn for all eternity in flame. Happy trails, Horsie!"

And, with that, I fling the horse away. It bounces off the ceiling and wall in the corner.
lightningthief: (beaten)
This isn’t funny. My dad Hermes and I had so many great tricks planned for the trick-or-treaters that’d be coming for Halloween, but this is not one of them! Why can’t I find the way back to our house? I fell asleep at home, but woke up in this stupid field on this dumb island, and I’ve been walking around for hours.

I call out for about the hundredth time, “Mom? Dad?”

Mom had been getting ready too. She was going to balance out our tricks with her treats. She can bake cookies now without burning them or the house.

Can’t she?

I fall to my knees. This can’t all have been fake? Can it?

Oh gods! I look around. I can’t see any mist at all. No mist.

“No!” I can hear the desperation in my own voice. I need this to not be happening. My mom and my dad are my entire world now! I can’t live without them! I can’t!

No more hikes in the woods with mom. No more sword practice with dad. No more dinners together. I’ll never see them ever again!

“NO!”

It was a lie. I am the son of the god of trickery, and I fell for a massive LIE?!

My parent’s love… is a…. lie. The island knows about me, and I’ve been… been victimized. Oh gods no, oh gods, oh gods, oh gods!

The grief is too much. I fall over onto the ground. Tears begin to fall. I was lied to, and I believed it. Me, a gullible, ignorant fool. I’ve been pouring out my heart to fake images that couldn’t give a crap about me. Of COURSE they don’t love me. Of COURSE. Kronos would laugh so hard. He told me this was my greatest weakness, this pathetic and senseless desire of mine to be loved. I am unlovable. I ought to have known I am unlovable. My heart is a joke to be laughed at and kicked around for fun. This is too much! I can NOT deal with this! I’ll go mad. My gods, I’m going to go mad, just like my mother! Is there a point coming where something just breaks in your head? Will you actually hear some kind of ‘pop’ in your head when it happens?
lightningthief: (did Hades just erupt out of that fire)
Nick's encounter made me curious. The island is doing something new. Nick's encounter with Artemis had some details that don't fit the previous mold. Percy and Coraline had missed three days, but it had started at night when they were sleeping, where Nick just lost three days while he was walking around. Also, Nick encountered Artemis here on the island, not in a scene back home, yet Artemis seemed to have her powers. I can't seem to fit these little details together into what's really going on here. That irks me. I've been thinking about it for a while, and I've been snooping around that area of the island, just to see if I can pick up any clues.

So, once again, after breakfast, I head out. Juuuust in case, I packed myself some food and water, because I realize something might happen to me too. If I wake up groggy, parched, and starved, I'll be prepared. I also have my sword Masamune with me.

I walk around for a good while. Three and a half hours, in fact. I covered the area Nick was in, and I fanned out. I know magic occurrences aren't necessarily going to drop physical clues, but I can't help feeling a tad disappointed. I've been looking around for days, but haven't found anything. As I start mentally asking myself what did I expect, I am suddenly distracted by a blur of movement off to the side. I stop and turn, my body preparing for anything. I'm about to grab my sword. Suddenly, something really fast comes, but stops in front of me. My jaw drops.

It's my dad.

Hermes, immortal messenger of Olympus, god of travel, boundaries, trickery, theft, is standing before me. He's holding his caduceus, that staff thing with the two snakes. He's looking at me. His expression looks to be remorseful, but this is Hermes. I don't trust him. I can never trust him. He had that kind of expression that one, and only, time we met, and he didn't really love me then.

"Luke..."

"Hermes?! What in Tartarus are you doing here?" Sure, Nick met Artemis around here, so one could reason why not Hermes too, but this is SO not the same!

"Son, I..." He begins, but I immediately interrupt him, "Screw you." When I was young, how many times had I prayed to him, begged him for help? As the years passed, how many times had I cursed his name? Cursed Olympus? My body is tensed. My hands are clenched at my sides. We look at each other in a silent moment of impasse.

"Please let me talk," he pleads.

No, I think as I shake my head slightly. I can't handle this. I don't want this. I don't want to be hurt by him again. He looks upset as I begin to take small steps backwards, away from him. "Forget it. Save your lies for someone more gullible than me. You'd have to..." I was turning away, but suddenly he rushes around in front of me and speaks.

He's in front of me on one bent knee. The caduceus has been cast to the ground next to him, and the two snakes look a bit huffy, but don't say anything. The god's hands are clasped and raised in front of him. "...beg you on bended knee? I will, if that's what it takes." I was about to say 'beg me on bended knee.' I freeze. My mouth is slightly agape. My father, a god of Olympus, is begging me. I am absolutely speechless. Totally. Floored. Time stretches.

Since I'm standing there dumbfounded, Hermes takes the opportunity to continue. "Please let me talk to you Luke. I think I finally understand. I've made terrible mistakes with you. Son, I'm so sorry."

He's still there on one knee. I'm still in shock. I'm actually straining against my body, which wants to actually shake. I'm actually on the verge of shaking! No. No, I won't trust him. I won't ever believe him! My mouth opens just slightly as if to speak, but I don't know what to say. All I can do is cock my head slightly and look at him with incredulity. This can't be real. Artemis wasn't real. This can't be real. Even if it is real, MY father is an uncaring, self-absorbed prick who's never lifted a finger to help me in my whole life. I hate him. Don't I? Deep emotions within me are being stirred against my will. This is going to be just like last time. I close my mouth, swallow, and summon forth some resolve as I shake my head firmly no.

"Go away."

"Luke, I don't expect you to forgive me easily. Just don't go yet, my son. Please. I need to talk to you."

I don't move. I don't say anything in reply. He continues.

"Back home, son, some... things... happen. Something significant happened that made me think long and hard about you."

Finally, I speak. "I die. I know."

"Luke, I'm sorry you found out about that before your time. Since then, I did something I should have long ago. I stole the Golden Fleece from Camp Half-Blood. I took it to your mother. She's healed."

I don't honestly think Medusa herself could freeze my whole body in place as completely as these words just did. My heart nearly pops out of my throat. There is no way to describe how I feel right now.

"Luke." The voice isn't my dad's. My eyes immediately struggle against tears. I know who it is behind me. I can't turn. This can't be real. This can't be real. This can't be... "Oh, Luke. Won't you look at me, sweetheart?"

My head is turning. There she is. She looks different. Her body language is different. I gasp out, "Oh gods..." Her instinct is to take a few hurried steps towards me, but she stops before she gets too close. Maybe she knows now! Maybe she knows now what she's been like, and why I'm always so distant with her! I see the tears streaming down her face. That's my mom. That's my mom crying! I can't...

"Luke, I understand now. I wanted to be a good mother to you, I really did." She starts crying more. As she begins to break down in front of me, she manages to croak out, "I'm so sorry."

"Mom.." Seeing her like this is tearing my heart apart. But that's always been the problem with her. Our love was always so twisted and painful. What should have been the center of a child's world was always bittersweet poison. Her little boy had to stop the oven from burning down the house too many times. Her little boy was chased to his hiding place in the closet too many times. Her little boy was caught and shook and ranted to too many times. There's too much painful history for me to readily rush to comfort her. My dad has none of those reservations, though. He goes to her. He wraps her in his arms and looks at me.

"She's barely stopped crying since I went to her with the fleece. She's explained and made me ashamed of everything that happened to you. Please, Luke. You don't have to forgive us right now. You don't even have to believe we're really here. Please. Come here. Just get a hug from your mom and dad." And, with that, he opens one arm out, welcoming me to walk to them. Mom does the same, and she reaches out for me too.

What am I supposed to do?

Every experience I've had throughout my entire life teaches me to run from this. Each of them has hurt me. I... have deep emotional scars because of them. Now, with two minutes of theatrics, I'm supposed to just cast that all aside? Gods, every fiber of my being wants this so bad. Curse them for doing this to me! Every rational thought tells me to run away now. This is a trap. It could even be dangerous. It could be a dangerous, even fatal trap.

I take a hesitant step forward.

Hermes nods and encourages me forward. "That's it son."

My mother adds, "It's okay. We won't hurt you anymore. Never again, Luke."

A very large tear rolls down the scar on my face. I can't run. I can't. My brain tells me nothing good can come of this. I can think of how this is a trap that I may never escape. But, I also know with complete certainty that I can not resist the steps I'm now taking. Gods, I'm scared. I'm scared of them! It's like I'm that little kid hiding in the closet all over again!

Suddenly, I realize I'm within their reach. I gasp in anxiety as their arms wrap around me. I tense up so bad as we come together. They start murmuring soothing things to me. They hold me. They tell me I was right, and they were wrong. They apologize profusely. They tell me everything is okay now. They tell me how much they love me.

Will Elysium ever be as good?

Hours pass.

I reluctantly go home, only because my mother insists that I take care of myself. She won't let me end up as bad off as Nick. Before I go, I vow to them I'll come back tomorrow.
lightningthief: (Default)
Aphrodite being mad with me put a big damper on the fun I was having in Trixia's body. After the joke I pulled on her fell flat, I've been in a bad mood since. Now suddenly, I've woken up in my own body again. Mmm, at least Coraline's out of it now. Thank the gods for that. I am in all one piece too. I checked. No, I didn't trust she didn't do anything stupid or strange to me. Time to go back home.

Soooo..... even after being annoyed for a few days, I don't really know what to do about Aphrodite. If she's not speaking to me so soon after we started this dating thing... I don't even know if this was a good idea in the first place. This was probably a bit stupid to think I can make something like that work. Yes, I deeply desire to be loved. No, I have not ever been deeply loved. Therein lies the problem. I know my childhood fucked me up. It's just what I am now. When she doesn't want me around, then I guess that's that. Right? It wasn't like I'm going to replace her Hephaestus. I don't know how to function that way. What does she want with my bundle of issues, anyway? Maybe we were better off just banging each other without the complications.

Is my fatal flaw the opposite of Percy's? Disloyalty? My ability to suddenly walk away from all my ties?

I go in my hut, regardless of Percy being there or not, shower up, get dressed, then go out back. Maybe I'll oil my armor this morning. It's a good time killer.
lightningthief: (what the styx)
There was one handsome man sleeping fitfully. There was one ridiculously attractive man yawning loudly as his hand came up to rub his eyes. And there was one beautiful goddess in bed with him. Or rather with her. What?

Coraline blinked confused down at Aphrodite, looking at her puzzled before letting out a startled yell at her everything. Falling backwards out of bed, Coraline averted her eyes anywhere that wasn't you know Aphrodite.

"Um, why are you in bed with me?" Coraline began, trying to untangle herself from the sheets. Her legs and arms going everywhere. She paused, looking up wide eyed and frantic at Aphrodite. "Why do I sound like Luke? Why do I-" Coraline glanced down. "OH GOD WHAT IS THAT?"

Coraline looked horrified down at what she never, ever, ever wanted to see in a million years. She was pretty sure Luke's body was blushing, if it wasn't then she was dying inside. Actually, genuinely dying. What the hell was his body doing- oh god no. "Nope, this isn't happening. Nope! STOP HAPPENING BODY!"
lightningthief: (playin my games)
After a more interesting day at the Compound, I decided to go back home and wait up for Percy. He hadn't been back at our place when I got there, so I fired up the game system and started up dishing out some digital death.

Coraline had asked me if Percy liked her. She'd also mentioned Esther attacking her, and how she and Percy had some earlier conversation that hadn't answered her questions. I didn't honestly know anything about any of it. I'd told Coraline I'd ask Percy for her. Maybe the best thing would've been to insist that the two of them try talking again, but I thought I'd get in the middle here just for a bit. This could get messy considering not-Thalia, a.k.a. Valkyrie.

And, maybe Percy doesn't know either. I'll help him sort it out if he needs me. Anyway, until he gets here, I'm going to pile up the virtual bodies.
lightningthief: (that tree icon thing...)
This whole amnesia thing has made me uncomfortable. I don't like the feeling of having to trust everyone around me about all of these things I'm going to do, and about this life I've supposedly led here. So, I'm going to turn a one-eighty and suddenly kill Kronos by sacrificing myself. I believe that. As much as I want to smash Olympus, I hate Kronos more. I just never thought I'd have the will to overcome him. I still don't completely understand that. What also burns me is that Olympus, once again, gets a free pass. When all is said and done, they get away with everything, and what happened to me will continue happening for centuries yet to come. But, at least I didn't leave the world worse off.

Ever since that first day, I haven't wanted to talk about things back home. I haven't been all that talkative period. I'm having such a hard time dealing with all this. I'm going to believe what all of the people around me are telling me, but I'm not about to open up to any of them. So, most of my time has been hiking around the island, watching television in the rec center, and just doing chores and sword practice. Aphrodite keeps asking me to stop by, so I have a few times. I think there's more between us she isn't telling me. I suspected that from the first day. I just wish I could remember on my own!

Today is another one of the times she's pinned me down for a visit, so here I am. I casually rap my knuckles against the door to knock as I look out across this weird island.
lightningthief: (that tree icon thing...)
Apparently I have amnesia. The circumstances are so bizzare, I'll continue wondering if this is all some demented trick, but to my amazement, this whole other-world amnesia story makes the most sense out of any other explanation, so it's probably right. After being away for a while, it's time to return to the hut. The hut that I apparently share with my arch-enemy, a.k.a. roommate, Percy Jackson. When I get there, I knock at the door.

"Percy? It's Luke. I'm better now. I won't go after you, honest. That is, if you trust me at all..."

I'm braced in case the kid goes at me, but I'm guessing he won't. I adjust the ice pack on my head slightly as I wait for him to open the door.
lightningthief: (about to kick your ass)
[OOC: Continued from HERE]

I can admit to myself that I'm confused. I don't know what power Percy could've used to abduct me from the heart of Mount Orthys. I don't know why he left me unguarded, unrestrained, and with access to a weapon. I don't know why he started trying to get me to believe that we're no longer enemies. But, then again, Percy always was a poor planner. Maybe finally his string of successes got to his head, and he never expected things to finally go bad for him.

He may have escaped me for the time being, but I will hunt him down and be done with him once and for all!! The truth is that I'm pissed off, and I don't think I even care what's going on anymore. Percy's ruined every one of my plans, and so help me, that kid will finally, finally pay. I'm at the end. The very end! There's only so far I can be pushed. If I can't even give up, either to Annabeth or to Kronos, I'm just going to go after that self-righteous son of Poseidon until my last breath. How dare he try this lame stunt! Vengeance is all I have left. I've lost everything else. He can not take that away from me too.

As I stride forward across the unfamiliar landscape, I shout out, "Per-cy!!" Come on out and face me. Bring it.
lightningthief: (about to kick your ass)
I bolt upright, gasping for breath. The last thing I can remember was being in Mount Orthys. I was alone and counting down the hours and minutes of my life before it was time for Kronos to take me as his vessel and sunder the world. I'd nearly retched at the thought of going through with this. But now?! I don't understand why I'm in a bed. Did I pass out? Has it already happened?

My hand touches my face, my neck, my chest. I don't feel any different...

This isn't right. Something's gone wrong.

I turn my head and see a large sword close by. I immediately grip the hilt. It's not Backbiter, but within a moment, I've got a feel for the weight of it. This is a good sword. That's at least a good sign.

Getting out of the bed, I stand up and realize that I'm dressed differently. Odd. Then I realize I've got some light shorts on, but also an orange Camp Half-Blood T-shirt. My expression darkens. Not funny. If this is some accursed attempt by Olympus to save their asses, they've got another thing coming! Luke Castellan does not go quietly. If I go down, I'm making it count for all it's worth whether I personally get to crush Olympus before I go or not. Those heartless gods may have found some way to kidnap me, but Ethan can take my place. We've always, always got a backup plan.

My backup plan, for now, consists of using this sword to get some answers, and maybe as much vengeance as I can get. Who knows? With the protection the Curse of Achilles, I might defeat everyone here and still make it back in time. Why keep the Fates waiting?

With sword in hand, I stealthily creep forward and open the door and move into the next room. A son of the god of thieves knows how to be quiet when he needs to be. I'm in some type of hut, and I can see a glimpse of outside. I'm somewhere in the tropics. There's a computer, game system, and some stuff in here like modern people live here. Hmm, exits. I see a front door out and another door to the side. I need to see if they've got Ethan too. I open it, and to my deep fury, I see Percy Jackson. My dark look darkens further to outright menacing. Percy always ruins EVERYTHING!

Not. This. Time.

"Percy Jackson," I declare with spite. I lower my blade slightly with a subtle, threatening gesture. "Don't move, hero."
lightningthief: (b&w)
Ever since Valentine's Day, I've been a much better mood. I'm not dwelling so much about the past and the future. There's a present to live in. Being with Aphrodite is not only hot and highly enjoyable, I think it's snapped me out of the funk I've been in. I've just gotten done getting ready to go out to Aphrodite's hut once again, and I pause to consider my nearby roommate.

Percy has to suspect something by now. I know he'd often oblivious and easier to lead around than a puppy, but even Percy must be wondering why he hasn't seen me around a few nights, and less of me in general. Maybe his thing with Valkyrie has him distracted, but still. It's not like I've been actively trying to keep things with Aphrodite a secret, but I haven't really brought it up, either. Maybe he'll finally ask me what's going on this time.

I've got a bag with some extra clothes in it. I really should keep some things at her place now that we're going at it regularly. I pick it up and head into the main room where I see Percy there.

"Hey Percy. I'm going out. Don't wait up for me."
lightningthief: (contemplative looking away)
My conversation with Percy the other day about Valkyrie has been gnawing at me a bit. I think I did a good job helping him decide what he wanted to do. What I didn't decide is what I want him to do. Does it matter what I want? It's his life. But, Annabeth is family. What I have decided on is to go visit Thalia. I packed a bunch of food, drinks, and a few random supplies from the Compound to bring over to her. Not that Thalia needs anyone to take care of her, it's just that we used to look out for each other. Maybe she'd appreciate a little something. It takes for-friggin'-ever to get to Thalia's trailer. I know she's got the Hunter thing going on, but could she have chosen a point any physically further from the Compound? I don't really think so.

As I walk up, I call out, "Hey Thalia! Are you home?"
lightningthief: (playin my games)
I'll never understand this island. Why did an amusement park just appear? I suppose the island's response is 'why not?' It's been a lot of fun, so I guess I won't complain. Having an amusement park to hang out in is a nice change. It's also a good thing that things are really good now between Percy and I. We've been hanging out together and having fun. We spent nearly the whole day together today. We went on some rides, had some junk food, went in the batting cages, and played some games.

Percy and I were pretty good at the games, so we cleaned up on prizes. It also helps when you don't have to pay, so you don't really lose anything, and you can keep going and going. Getting the small mountain of prizes back to my hut was a pain, but I wasn't about to let any of our winnings go unclaimed. I get my minor kleptomania from my dad. After a long time at the park, Percy and I decided to crash at my place. His hut was still torn up for construction, plus my hut's still decked out with video games.

I've discovered that now and then video games are hard to stop if you're really on a roll and making good progress. I don't think either of us knew or cared that midnight had come and went. But even with most of my attention on the game, I still had an idea of what was going on around me. It's the demigod ADHD thing we have. We always have a battle awareness of our surroundings. At the hint of movement behind me, I immediately realize we're about to be attacked.

"Percy, look out!," I yell and I drop my controller and dive to the side.
lightningthief: (questioning)
Just outside of Green Arrow Estates is the island's forge. I've used it a lot to make different practice weapons all these months of what seems like self-exile. It's been days since the jukebox recited our futures to us in Percy's voice, but it still seems like news to me. I haven't quite absorbed it all yet.

Percy and I told each other we should be friends now. It's so strange looking him in the eye and, for once, he knows everything and we're on the same side again. That is, if there really are 'sides' anymore. I guess that's the point of this ceremony thing. Percy suggested that we melt down Riptide and Backbiter, and I agreed. The two of us have used these weapons to fight each other. I thought the idea over, wondering why Percy suggested it, and I guess melting our swords down will be like melting the war back home down.

We considered inviting others, but in the end we decided to just do this thing together, just us. I'm looking forward to it. I genuinely want to reconnect with Percy. After hearing what he's going to do for me, I'm convinced I owe him more than just my life. Sweat is dripping off me as I work the bellows. I want to stoke the forge pretty hot for this. Percy's right near me, and I break the moment of silence.

"Percy. You don't have to melt Riptide. Backbiter is tied to Kronos, and tied to my betrayal. You've always stayed true, and fought for what's right. We could just throw in Backbiter."

Gods, I'm going to miss that sword. The sword is legendary. As Kronos's scythe, it cleaved one of the original immortals, Ouranos the sky, and brought forth the pantheon of the Titans. It created Aphrodite. It was a sign of my prestige. I've never fought with a better blade, and I doubt I ever will again. A large part of me wants to keep this sword, but, like I said, it's tied to Kronos and my betrayal. I have to melt it down like Percy suggested. I'll get by with a regular old sword.
lightningthief: (beaten)
Like many stories begin, I was just sitting around minding my own business. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that the jukebox turned on for me as it often does. I mean, hanging around in the rec room is just asking for trouble, isn't it? But instead of the usual songs it dumps on me, I'm surprised to hear it cut into Percy's voice, and he's telling a story. I can't imagine this is meant for me, because why would he tell me anything related to the battle that's about to happen in New York? This has got to be some kind of recording from the future, but how can that have happened? Percy's going to die in that battle. Maybe someone talked to his spirit in the Underworld? Hades' kid Nico could've done it. I sit back in my chair as the story goes on and give the thing my full attention. I'm amazed at the level of detail Percy is going to. He's not normally so focused on details, which makes me think this has got to be a spirit conversation.

As it plays, I see Percy and Thalia walk in. Before they can blame me for being up to something, I just put my hands up in a universal sign of hey-not-my-fault and motion over to some unoccupied chairs. If they want to hear about the end of all our lives, I'm not stopping them. It may be good for them to come to grips with the truth of how everything is going to end. I don't acknowledge the others coming in and out of the room. I'd rather hear this alone, but I don't really care too much about the other people around me, just as long as they keep their distance from me during this. Even Gabrielle. A brutal look and a glint of Backbiter's blade are all I need to keep them from smothering me like some lost puppy. I will NOT be pitied or consoled during this, PERIOD.

I'm not exactly liking the parts with Hestia in it. Who does she think she is explaining the details of my life and why I did what I did? Does it matter? Really? And when it talks about how I met my dad at home, I'm expressionless except for the iron grip I have on the armrests. Why is Hestia even bothering? Maybe she's just explaining to them why they're all about to meet in the Underworld together. Hestia should've joined Kronos. There's no point in her supporting Zeus needlessly.

As the narrative of the battle goes on, I hear about the sudden arrival of Ares cabin led by... Clarisse? Something is wrong. I can tell. As the voice goes on, a horrible idea forms in my head. No. She didn't! Tell me she didn't! Oh gods, Silena! I was going to protect you! All you had to do is stay out of it! Oh, gods!

”...Finally Annabeth managed to remove the girl’s helmet. We all gathered around: the Ares campers, Chris, Clarisse, Annabeth, and me. The battle still raged along Fifth Avenue, but for that moment nothing existed except our small circle and the fallen girl.

Her features, once beautiful, were badly burned from poison. I could tell that no amount of nectar or ambrosia would save her.

‘Something is about to happen.’ Rachel’s words rang in my ears. ‘A trick that ends in death.’

Now I knew what she meant, and I knew who had led the Ares cabin into battle.

I looked down at the dying face of Silena Beauregard.”


I turned her into my spy, and she just goes and sacrifices herself for their side. Somehow I manage to sit through it all without saying or doing anything. I struggle to shut it all off like I used to be able to. But I can't.

The battle rages on and then, finally, I appear in Percy's narrative. I'm the indomitable, invulnerable deity I imagined I would be. It's terrifying. I felt what it was like to be fully taken by Kronos last Halloween, and I can't even imagine what I'll feel like after having to house him for so long.

“...”YOU!” Annabeth turned on Luke. “To think that I...that I thought –"

She drew her knife.

“Annabeth, don’t.” I tried to take her arm, but she shook me off.

She attacked Kronos, and his smug smile faded. Perhaps some part of Luke remembered that he used to like this girl, used to take care of her when she was little. She plunged her knife between the straps of his armor, right at his collarbone. The blade should’ve sunk into his chest. Instead it bounced off. Annabeth doubled over, clutching her arm to her stomach. The jolt might’ve been enough to dislocate her bad shoulder.

I yanked her back as Kronos swung his scythe, slicing the air where she’d been standing.

She fought me and screamed, "I HATE you!” I wasn’t sure who she was talking to – me or Luke or Kronos. Tears streaked the dust on her face.”


My gut wrenches. My iron grip on my emotions is breaking. I want to yell out for it to stop, but instead I sit there silent and wait for the end. I'm no innocent kid. I've known our end would be more than horrible, but hearing about it like this is almost more than I can bear.

Annabeth!

I'm sorry, Annabeth! Gods, I never told you all these months we were here on this accursed island. I'm SORRY! But the main reason I never said anything is because 'sorry' isn't enough. How could it be?

I try to keep calm as I reach Olympus. Percy's description of me starting to level Olympus is hollow comfort. I don't want revenge anymore. Make it stop! My stomach is in knots. I feel like I might puke, but I've got to hear this to the bitter end. I close my eyes and turn slightly away from Thalia as Percy describes Hera's statue coming down towards Annabeth and Thalia getting trapped.

And then the end nears. I feel a pang of regret as I hear Kronos kill Ethan. Another person gone. I wanted you to live, Ethan! Then Kronos goes for Backbiter, and Hestia's hearth burns my hands. I'll never wield a sword right again. Then, in the story, Kronos and I turn on Annabeth to finish her.

"No!"

The word escapes my mouth right there in the rec room. My will is breaking. I raise my head and see Percy and Thalia taking in my haunted look. I shake my head fearfully. I don't want this, and I just can't keep up a mask anymore.

"Not Annabeth!"

”Luke,” she said, gritting her teeth, “I understand now. You have to trust me.”

Kronos roared in outrage. “Luke Castellan is dead! His body will burn away as I assume my true form!”

I tried to move, but my body was frozen again. How could Annabeth, battered and half dead with exhaustion, have the strength to fight a Titan like Kronos?

Kronos pushed against her, trying to dislodge his blade, but she held him in check, her arms trembling as he forced his sword down toward her neck.

“Your mother,” Annabeth grunted. “She saw your fate.”

“Service to Kronos!” the Titan roared. “This is my fate.”

“No! Annabeth insisted. Her eyes were tearing up, but I didn’t know if it was from sadness or pain. “That’s not the end, Luke. The prophecy: she saw what you would do. It applies to you!”

“I will crush you, child!” Kronos bellowed.

“You won’t,” Annabeth said. “You promised. You’re holding Kronos back even now.”

“LIES!” Kronos pushed again, and this time Annabeth lost her balance. With his free hand, Kronos struck her face, and she slid backward.

I summoned all my will. I managed to rise, but it was like holding the weight of the sky again.

Kronos loomed over Annabeth, his sword raised.

Blood trickled from the corner of her mouth. She croaked, “Family, Luke. You promised.”


Perseus Jackson is not the hero of the prophecy. Neither is Thalia. We always assumed it had to be one of them. When Thalia joined the Hunters, it HAD to be Percy. In all my life, I've never been as shocked as I am right now. I, Luke Castellan, son of Hermes, am supposed to be the hero of prophecy!

I see it too, Annabeth! Gods, you're so smart! I'll do it! Please! I'll do it! I swear I'll save you all! But, oh Gods, you'll never give me a weapon! I can't say anything. I cup my hands around my eyes like a visor and sink into my chair. I know the others in the room are looking at me now. I can't bear to look back.

”...The line from the great prophecy echoed in my head: ‘A hero’s soul, cursed blade shall reap.’ My whole world tipped upside down, and I gave the knife to Luke.

Grover yelped. “Percy? Are you...um...”

Crazy. Insane. Off my rocker. Probably.

But I watched as Luke grasped the hilt.

I stood before him – defenseless.

He unlatched the side straps of his armor, exposing a small bit of his skin just under his left arm, a place that would be very hard to hit. With difficulty, he stabbed himself.

It wasn’t a deep cut, but Luke howled. His eyes glowed like lava. The throne room shook, throwing me off my feet. An aura of energy surrounded Luke, growing brighter and brighter. I shut my eyes and felt a force like a nuclear explosion blister my skin and crack my lips.”


I don't want to die. I've never wanted to die. But what's being told to me sounds like a much better end to my life than I could have hoped for. The last words I'll ever speak will be directed to Percy.

He gripped my sleeve, and I could feel the heat of his skin like fire. “Ethan. Me. All the unclaimed. Don’t let it...Don't let it happen again...”

His eyes were angry, but pleading too.

“I won’t,” I said. “I promise.”

Luke nodded, then his hand went slack.


I struggle to keep myself together as I hear myself beg Percy to not let what happened to me and Ethan happen to anyone else. Then I'm dead. Gods, I’m DEAD. I destroyed Kronos. I really destroyed the bastard! I suddenly look up and glance around the room. They're all looking at me. I'm sure my eyes are all red now and I must look like I'm about to lose it. Just as suddenly, I turn back to the radio and hold out a hand. I want to hear every last word of this. Delaying everyone's reaction is just an added benefit.

The gods offer Percy immortality. I'm not surprised. Percy has accomplished more than any other hero, including the ones from ancient times. But he refuses. I can see why. The way Percy describes Annabeth has shown everyone how he feels about her. I can also understand NOT wanting to live as an immortal, especially with the Olympians. Instead, he makes them swear on the River Styx that they claim their children and honor the minor gods. He's using his hero's reward to fulfill my dying wish. Percy! I can't even describe how I'm feeling. I just try and keep my face blocked from view and breathe. It's only my need to hear everything that keeps me together.

Percy tells me about my own funeral.

My father leads the procession, and the Fates themselves deliver my remains to the Underworld.

Then finally the jukebox falls silent.

[OOC: Gathering-style. Excerpts are from “The Last Olympian” by Rick Riordan.]
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