Author's Note: Weird combo, I know. It just came to me and I had to try it, haha. Read, review, and enjoy!
IMPORTANT INFO: I don't actually know what the correct ages for the Bat fam are. The internet wasn't helpful either. So I'm solving that by just not putting ages and instead just referencing who's older and younger. Sorry if that info is wrong or gives the wrong impression of a certain event or whatever. Also, I hardcore do not accept the ending of Blood of Olympus as canon, fair warning. That's probably going to change for no reason other than the fact that I literally can't handle that ending.
For all that Percy was technically in the middle of a war, it didn't always feel like it. He still – occasionally – went to school and he still had to deal with the thought of his mother marrying Paul and he still had to deal with normal person drama.
Or, well, semi-normal person drama.
"He's what?" Percy squeaked.
Sally wrung her hands somewhat nervously, "I'm sorry, Percy. I was going to tell you when you were older, but then everything with your father came to light and you ended up in a war and there was the prophecy and it just – wasn't the right time."
Percy sighed at the reminder of the mess his life had become, "It's fine, Mom, really. I'm just surprised is all. I wasn't expecting to have another brother. Or, well, another – another brother. How many brothers do I have?" Percy frowned and tried again, "I wasn't expecting to have another brother from a different father." He frowned deeper, rubbing his forehead, "I'm so confused."
Sally's expression had lightened a little at Percy's acceptance, and she pulled him into her arms, pressing the side of his head into her neck, "Your father… wasn't my first. I think he's the first man I loved, but there was another man before him. He wasn't a good man, but we had a child together, named Jason. Then Jason's father decided to move to Gotham, and I didn't. We went to court over custody of Jason and – well, he won. I had almost nothing to my name. I was between jobs. I had been living with him, so I was going to have nowhere to live; I lived in a hotel for a while. And, yes, Gotham is dangerous, but New York isn't the safest place either. At the time, he had a lot more going for him than I did. The court figured Jason's father had a better chance of taking care of him than I did."
"And," Percy said slowly, struggling to take everything in, feeling like more of a seaweed brain than usual, "why tell me now? If you didn't want to tell me during the war, you'd have to wait until I'm sixteen. But… I'm not sixteen. The war's still happening." Percy finished with a lame little shrug, idly messing with his pen.
Sally smiled softly at him, "He reached out to me, actually. He ended up being taken in by Bruce Wayne if you can believe it! Apparently, Wayne and the other ward – Richard Grayson, was it? – convinced him to reach out to me. I'm going to visit him this weekend. Are you free?"
A crushing feeling of guilt took over Percy at the obvious hope on his mother's face, "I'm so sorry, Mom. We're having a meeting at camp this weekend. We think we got a sighting of Luke and I have to help lead a search party. Some of us smaller cabins split the people in the Hermes cabin, so I'm leading a group of them in a search. With everything that's happening with the war and with the day of the prophecy coming up… I'm really, really sorry." Percy felt a dull stab of fury at Luke. He wasn't just messing with Percy's camp life. He was messing with Percy's home life, too, and that wasn't alright.
Tremulously, Sally offered a smile, "It's alright. It might be better to see him alone. The first time, anyways. I wouldn't want to overwhelm him." She paused, "Are you overwhelmed?"
"No, no, I'm fine," Percy answered immediately. He laughed at Sally's suspicious look, "Really, Mom. I think I'm numb to shock at this point in my life. And I really would like to meet him at some point. It'll be nice to have a sibling that's not involved in all this gods mess."
Thunder crashed outside. Percy rolled his eyes, "What did I say? I wasn't insulting him! I wasn't insulting anyone! It was meant to be an amusing and reassuring statement!"
Sally threw her head back and laughed, "It might have been a coincidence, sweetie. I'm sure he's not listening all the time. Sometimes thunder is just thunder."
"That's what you think," Percy muttered, "Stalker." Thunder boomed outside again, and Percy flung his hands at the window in exasperation. Shaking his head in mild disbelief, Percy continued, "Anyways, my point was, it'll be nice to have a mortal, normal brother."
Sally bumped their shoulders together and smirked, "He lives with a billionaire, now. I'm not so sure he'll be normal." She winked at him and they laughed.
He wasn't laughing when they visited together three weekends later, a week or two before he would go off to camp. Percy raised his eyebrows and whistled, impressed, "Nice place."
Next to him in the taxi, Sally smiled, eyes crinkling at the sides, "It is, isn't it? Can you believe that as I was leaving, Bruce told me that he could buy us a new place closer to here? And I said no?" Percy could, in fact, believe that. Mainly because Sally had mentioned it many times since her first visit to the Wayne manor.
The car took another turn and the mansion came back into view, causing Percy's nerves to flare again. He started tapping his leg nervously, "Are you sure he'll want to see me? I mean, he's still getting used to you… He won't want some kid coming in on that."
Sally smiled at him, "You're a great brother, Percy. Tyson loves you!"
Percy sighed, "Tyson is the equivalent of a little kid. This guy is my older brother. I haven't even met any of my older brothers at this point."
Patting him lightly on the arm, Sally reassured, "It'll be fine! Jason was a little standoff-ish at first, but we had a nice, serious talk and it's fine now. He's very understanding now that the hard stuff is out of the way."
"Yeah, okay," Percy said, hand slipping into his pocket to mess with Riptide a little bit. Sally smiled at him again. And then they were at the front doors of the mansion. Standing at the top of the stairs were four people – someone that Percy vaguely recognized as Bruce Wayne, one he recognized as Jason from his mom's picture, another teen he guessed to be Richard Grayson, and someone who looked like a stereotypical butler. Percy tried to stop himself from tensing again. Honestly, this was ridiculous. He'd fought a god when he was only twelve! This shouldn't make him so nervous.
Sally squeezed his hand as they walked towards the door, causing Percy's cheeks to heat in mild embarrassment even as he squeezer her hand back. Bruce Wayne (an actual billionaire!) gave them a small smile, "Sally. And… Perseus Jackson?"
Percy grimaced, "Just Percy, please. No one calls me Perseus."
Bruce's lips twitched, "Of course. Please call me Bruce, then. These are my… sons, Dick and Jason."
He was obviously going to say more, but Percy blurted, "Dick?"
Dick sighed, "It's a traditional nickname for the name Richard. Which is my name."
"That's a weird nickname," Percy said dubiously.
"Percy!" Sally scolded.
Percy put his hands up in an I'm-innocent gesture, "What? I never said that's a bad thing! It's fine to have weird nicknames! Thalia's nickname is Pinecone Face and that's fine!"
Sally sighed in disappointment, "She tried to stab you the last time you called her that."
"Tried being the key word. If she was really upset, she would have succeeded," Percy pointed out. He frowned and rubbed at his arm slightly, "Trust me."
Jason spoke for the first time, snorting, "You let some girl stab you?"
Percy raised his eyebrow and tried to not bristle, "No one lets Thalia do anything. She does it whether you want her to or not. She'd be able to put your on your-,"
"Percy!" Sally scolded again, "Honestly. Please try to not antagonize your brother."
"Me?" Percy asked incredulously. He wasn't the one being sexist.
Jason snorted again, eyes narrowed, "It's a good thing you don't have any other siblings. You're awful at this."
"First of all," Percy said, taking a step forward because he never could resist a challenge, "You're one to talk. Second of all, I happen to have many siblings. Tyson loves me."
Bruce stepped in, putting a warning hand on Jason's shoulder, "I hadn't realized you had other children, Sally."
Sally smiled, putting a tight hand on Percy's shoulder and steering him up the stairs, "I don't. Percy and Jason are my only kids. Percy's father has… quite a few children."
"A couple are even with his wife," Percy added cheerfully because it was something that had always bothered him even though he'd never met Amphitrite. Sally sighed next to him and Percy actually felt bad.
But then Jason started laughing, almost bend over, with Dick providing a truly terrifying accompaniment of cackling. The adults shared exasperated glances over the teenagers' heads, but that was alright.
The butler cleared his throat and gestured to the door, "Should we move this conversation into the entertainment room?"
"That would be perfect, Alfred," Bruce said, leading the way inside.
Percy craned his head around as he walked, taking in everything as he went. Jason moved closer, hesitantly, glaring at Dick over his shoulder, "Never seen a place this fancy, huh?"
Percy thought of everything he'd seen in camp and at Hades' palace. He thought of everything he'd seen on Circe's island, on Olympus. No, he hadn't seen anything like this. He hadn't seen what mortals considered opulence. He'd only seen the opulence of the gods. The disparity was… large. Not wanting to let on his sadness at the thought, Percy just sent Jason a grin and said, "No way."
Jason smiled, "Yeah, that's what I was like when I came here for the first time. This is a far cry from the streets." They fell into silence after that comment. Percy was vividly reminded of how bad he was at communication with mortals, especially now when he spent most of his weekends and any half-days at camp, preparing for war. What did mortals even talk about?
Dick saved him by coming up behind the two of them and dropping an arm around each of their shoulders. Percy almost flipped him. The older teen was freaking silent and Percy did not trust being touched suddenly. Thankfully, though, Percy didn't flip him. Dick gave him a strange look at the sudden tenseness, but didn't comment, instead announcing brightly, "Jason was very excited to meet you. He was quite thrilled at the thought of getting to be the older brother."
Percy noticed Jason going bright red under Dick's other arm and decided to help him out a bit, "I get that. You're certainly doing better than I did when I discovered I had a little brother on my dad's side."
Jason lit up, "Oh well, I know for sure that I'll at least do better than my older brother."
Dick's arms slipped off their shoulders and he pouted rather dramatically. Percy just raised his eyebrows. He'd taken the full force of Tyson, Mrs. O'Leary, and Juniper giving him puppy dog faces at the same time. Nothing will get him again. Dick's pout intensified.
They finally made it to the entertainment room and settled into the very comfortable chairs. Alfred bustled around the room, setting out tea, coffee, and cookies. Percy itched to grab at the coffee but had already been warned away by Sally. Percy didn't want to anger her more than he already has…
"Thank you, Alfred," Bruce said when Alfred finally finished. Alfred nodded and stepped back. Bruce nodded to Percy, "Sally didn't get a chance to tell us much about you the last time she was here. You're a freshman, correct?" Percy nodded, already dreading the turn the conversation was taking. Sure enough, Bruce asked, "Do you like school much? Do you plan to go to college afterwards?"
Despite himself, Percy colored a little bit, "Ah, no. I'm not too fond of school. I, ah, changed schools a lot. Well – I got kicked out of schools a lot." Bruce winced, looking like he had not wanted the conversation to go this direction. Had he already known about Percy's past?
"Really?" Jason asked, eyebrows raised, "How many?"
Percy sighed, "A nice average of once a year. This will actually be the first time I go to the same school two years in a row."
Now both teenagers were staring at him with something approaching awe. Sally moved in to explain, "Percy attracts trouble."
"That's a lot of trouble to attract," Dick said, a delighted lilt to his voice.
Sally sighed, "Some were his fault, but the majority were just bad situations."
Percy groaned, "When will you let me live that down? It was an accident!"
"What did you do?" Jason asked eagerly, moving forward in his seat.
Percy dropped his face in his hands, "We were at an old war thing and there was a canon. I didn't know it was real!" Dick cackled. Percy buried his face further in his hands, "I, uh, accidentally blew up the school bus with the canon."
Jason breathed, "Nice!"
Sally mock frowned (she was mostly over it, but she still used it against Percy when he was in trouble), "It was most certainly not nice. I really thought that school would be the one to keep him. And they put it on his criminal record, too!"
"That!" Dick shouted, startled everyone, "I knew I recognized you! You were on television!"
Percy groaned again and wished that he could suffocate himself as he buried his face even further into his hands, "You spark one nation-wide manhunt, and no one lets it go."
Jason's delighted grin increased in size, looking almost manic in its glee, "The more you tell me, the more awesome I think you are." Bruce sighed and rubbed at his temple, proving that he definitely did a background check on Percy and had definitely not wanted this getting out.
"This is not how I wanted my introduction to go," Percy groaned dramatically.
"You're doing great," Dick cheered. Rich coming from the guy who brought up the manhunt in the first place.
Bruce cleared his throat and very obviously tried to get the conversation back on track, "What are you planning on doing after high school?"
Percy just blanked. After high school? Most days, Percy was pretty sure he wouldn't live past his sixteenth birthday. Even if he somehow magically survived, he'd spent most of his life struggling with his ADHD, his dyslexia, and his constantly switching schools. His grades were barely enough to get to the next year. They were dropping even further with the amount of weekends he spent at camp, helping with the war. There was no way he'd end up in college. Well, maybe he could. With a lot of help. Luckily, it was expected for high schoolers to react to questions about their future with momentary panic, so no one seemed too bothered by Percy's long pause before he finally answered, "I don't know, honestly. I'll probably go work at my summer camp. I think that would be nice."
Sally was giving him a sad, knowing look, but Percy didn't acknowledge it. She'd been trying to talk to him about his future, but he'd avoided the conversation. Now, she'd gotten Paul to help her with the nagging. It was only a matter of time before Percy broke down. Not today, though. Bruce smiled through his discomfort, "That is nice. It's always good to give back, to work for a group that helped you in your youth." Percy made a noise of agreement, not sure how to respond.
Jason responded for him, snorting dramatically, "You sounded so lame right there." Bruce sighed, pinching his nose again. Dick snickered. Jason turned to Percy, "Enough with the boring questions. Best video game?"
Percy laughed and answered, pleased to realize that they shared a favorite game. They launched into a conversation, Dick easily joining. The adults separated into their own conversation.
Percy thought that he could get used to this. Well, if he had time to get used to this. Was it even fair to do this to Jason? Percy's life was a disaster and it was inevitable that being close to him would cause the other problems. They'd already agreed to not tell Jason about Percy's demigod status for a long time. They hadn't even told Paul and he'd married Sally! Jason was just another person that Percy would have to lie to. It was hardly fair to Jason.
Sometimes, Percy wished he'd just stop here. He wished he'd become immortal like Thalia, stop aging at fifteen. If he became immortal at fifteen, then he didn't have to be the bearer of whatever big prophecy there was. Except, except he couldn't wish that. How could he? If he didn't take on this prophecy, then it would fall to Nico. Percy couldn't do that to the kid. He'd failed him already by letting Nico's sister die. He couldn't do this, too.
Still, that didn't stop Percy from wanting this, from wanting an older brother who had nothing to do with the Greek world of gods and goddesses and nightmares. Percy wanted this normality. He wanted this life where the strangest thing about him was that his half-brother had been adopted by a billionaire.
Jason's voice broke into his thoughts just as Percy realized he'd gone silent, "You okay there, man?"
Sally was looking at him, big brown eyes wide with worry. Percy smiled (it was probably more of a grimace, but he had gotten pretty morose the closer he got to sixteen), "Yeah, I'm good. You said you've got the game? Think we could play some?"
"Yeah, definitely," Jason said, still eyeing him strangely. Percy wondered what face he'd been making.
The three teenagers stood up to go wherever the games were when Sally's phone rang. She frowned and answered it, mouthing an apology to the group as she did, "Paul? Is everything alright?" She frowned further at whatever Paul answered before passing the phone over to Percy, "It's Annabeth. She said you don't have your phone on you."
Percy rolled his eyes, "When do I ever have my phone on me?"
He walked slightly away from the group and spoke into the phone, "Hey Annabeth, what's up?"
She responded tiredly, "There's an emergency at camp. Some new campers need some help. You know I wouldn't have called, but they need us."
Percy closed his eyes, physically feeling his shoulders slump. Some days, it felt like he never let go of the sky. Sighing, Percy responded, "Yeah, okay. See you, Wise Girl."
"See you, Seaweed Brain," Annabeth responded.
"Wise girl?" Dick teased, "Got yourself a girlfriend?"
Despite the situation, Percy blushed, "She's not my girlfriend!" Dick just snickered.
As Percy handed his phone back to Sally, she tilted her head and asked, "What did Annabeth need?" All Percy needed to do was frown for Sally to know what was going on. She gave him those big, sad eyes again (the ones Percy hated because he knew he was the sole cause for them, because he knew that his mom couldn't be happy when he was stuck in this mess), "You have to go?"
"I'm sorry, Mom. Emergency at camp. They need me and Annabeth. I'll probably be there the rest of the weekend," Percy said apologetically.
Sally gave him a brittle smile, "That's fine, sweetie. Be safe. Let me know when you get there, alright?"
"Do you need me to drive you anywhere?" Alfred asked. Percy wanted to curse. Right. Mortals. He couldn't just summon Blackjack and fly to camp like usual.
"Just to the bus station, please, if you wouldn't mind," Percy asked, "I can get to camp from there. I'll probably get A to pick me up at the bus station in Manhattan."
"Tell him hi from me," Sally said mildly, still trying to hide her disappointment. Percy felt his heart break.
"Will do," Percy said around the lump in his throat. He turned to the rest of the group, "Sorry I have to leave like this. Camp's been wild the past couple months. That's actually why I couldn't come with Mom the first two times she visited. I've been dealing with camp stuff. We'll definitely have to do this again, actually play the game next time."
"Yeah, for sure," Dick said, Jason echoing the sentiment, eyes narrowed again. Percy hoped he hadn't just ruined any chance he would have had to become actual brothers with Jason. He actually seemed pretty cool.
Smiling as he walked out the doors, Percy committed the moment to memory. It was one more reason to live past sixteen.
Jason had gone to visit his mom, hoping that this brother was there as well. They really hadn't gotten much time to hang out before Percy left for his camp for the summer. Jason wondered if it even counted as a summer camp with the amount of time Percy spent at it during the school year.
Whatever. Most summer camps were done by this point, so Percy should be home. And Jason needed a break from Dick and Bruce arguing. With that thought in mind, Jason had asked Sally if he could visit over the weekend. She had been more than excited for it, telling him that he was completely welcome. Alfred was kind enough to drive him all the way up there.
Paul was waiting outside the apartment for when Jason got there. Jason liked Paul well enough. He was kind of boring. Then again, most of Jason's friends and family were superheroes, so most civilians were kind of boring to him. Sally and Percy were cool though. Paul smiled and gave Jason a small fist bump, a smirk barely forming on his lips. Jason raised an eyebrow, "Something wrong?"
Paul sighed out a sad little laugh, "Should have figured you'd notice. I'm not the best at hiding things. Percy's struggling a little bit. A friend of his died two days ago. Percy was there when it happened and, well, he blames himself. He's got a few other things weighing on him at the moment, too. He's going back to camp later tonight, but they sent him here to process a little bit before he went back."
Jason's face fell. That sucked. Sure, he'd wanted Percy to be back from camp, but he hadn't wanted Percy back for that reason.
They reached the apartment before Jason could say anything. Paul sent Jason a bracing smile before unlocking the door and holding it open for Jason to enter first. The hero did, looking around curiously. It was the first time he'd gone to his mom's instead of her coming to Bruce's. It was a nice place.
At least, it looked nice until he caught sight of Percy listlessly sat in an armchair. He was staring at the television, but he obviously wasn't watching it. His fingers were gripped around a pen like he was contemplating using it as a weapon. There was an expression of such terrible grief and hopelessness and impotent fury on his face that Jason felt like he'd been kicked in the chest just looking at it.
Sally bustled out of the kitchen, startling as she saw Jason, just barely managing to keep the tray of blue cookies (when Jason had asked about the color, Sally had smiled wryly and said they were blue because Gabe said they couldn't be blue. He'd been confused, but there was something dark lurking underneath that wry smile and he hadn't been able to ask) from toppling out of her hands. She set it down in front of Percy, visibly deflating when he didn't move. She turned to Jason and opened her arms for one of her signature hugs, "Come here, Jason. It's so good to see you! How are you?"
"Better than him," Jason said when he finally pulled away from her hug, jerking his head to indicate Percy.
Sally glanced over at him and sighed, "I'd hope so."
Jason snorted out a laugh before walking over to Percy and kicking him on the leg, "Hey, come eat these cookies with me."
Percy turned his face away from the television and onto Jason instead, causing Jason to flinch when the horrible expression Percy had worn shifted into self-hatred. Percy mumbled, "I'm fine."
Scowling, Jason kicked his leg again (gently, of course. Percy wasn't a superhero), "Stop moping. I finally get to come up to New York and you're not at camp? Don't waste this chance moping."
"I'm not moping," Percy snapped. It was probably the first time Percy had snapped at Jason in the time they'd known each other. Jason reared back a little bit. Percy's lips pursed together in self-recrimination and he turned his head away again.
Plopping on the chair next to Percy's, Jason was vaguely aware of the fact that Sally and Paul had settled on the loveseat on the other side of the room. Jason grabbed one of Sally's cookies and bit into it gratefully. Once he got through that mouthful, he asked, "Your friend? The one that died? What was he like?"
Percy's jaw clenched and his fingers tightened dangerously on that pen. He said slowly, "He was good. Awesome at mechanics. Like, seriously good. I swear if you dropped Beckendorf off in the middle of the woods with no tools and came back the next day, he'd have been able to build a car or something ridiculous. And he was so sweet and so in love with his girlfriend. They were for real. I know some of the others in Beckendorf's cabin said that he was thinking of proposing to Silena. I'd never seen her cry before. Then I had to tell her that Beckendorf was dead, and…" He trailed off, eyes glassy.
"How did he die?" Jason asked. Percy shook his head and didn't answer. Jason offered, hesitantly, knowing it wouldn't really help but having to try anyways, "You know it's not your fault, right?"
Percy snorted bitterly, "Thanks for trying, but you weren't there, Jason."
"Does anyone else blame you?" Paul asked, finally joining in on the conversation.
"Triton seemed pretty sure it was my fault. Along with -," Percy cut himself off and shook his head. Jason tilted his head to the side. Triton? Who on earth named their kid Triton?
Sally's eyes flashed, "Don't you listen to Triton. He might be older than you, but that doesn't mean he's not prone to immature moments. He's stressed and he's jealous. He's afraid of losing his father to you."
"Don't have to worry about that," Percy muttered, "Not like Dad talks to me anyways. Not like Dad thinks I'm useful enough to help him, unlike Triton. Unlike Tyson. Unlike his and his wife's daughters. At least they're not getting people killed." Jason's eyes widened. That was a load of baggage that he was not qualified to deal with, wow. Jason kind of wanted to meet Percy's dad someday, just to punch him.
Sally's eyes softened at the admission, "Oh, Percy. You know your father loves you. He-,"
Percy interrupted her, standing up abruptly, shoving his pen in his pocket, "If he loved me, he wouldn't have had me! I'm cursed now, Mom." Sally flinched back and her eyes flickered over to Jason worriedly. Jason tilted his head to the side curiously. What was that about? Percy sighed at the movement, putting a hand up to his head, jaw clenched again, "I'm sorry. I don't mean that. I – I don't mean that. I'm just – so done right now. I can't. I – I'm going to go to my room for a little bit. Sorry for being like this during your visit, Jason. I hope you enjoy it regardless of my mess." He trudged back through the apartment to, presumably, his room.
Jason stared at his retreating back with wide eyes. Sally sighed, "I'm truly sorry, Jason. It's a bad time for Percy. He's… got a lot of stuff going on right now."
"It's really fine. Honestly. I just hope he's going to be alright," Jason admitted. It was easier to be soft when Sally was around. She just radiated this aura of protection and comfort and safety.
Sally stared intensely towards where her other son disappeared, "He will be. I'll make sure of it."
Jason smiled at the thought. He had no doubt that Sally could be as awesome and scary as Batman if her kids were threatened.
The three of them drifted into some light small talk, catching up and talking about whatever nonsense came to mind at the time. It was exactly the kind of peace that Jason had wanted, nice and calm. Much better than the arguing at home.
Jason hadn't realized how long they'd been talking until Percy came out of his room and cleared his throat. Jason jumped when he realized there was another person standing behind him, a thin little goth kid. Mouth gaped open, Jason demanded, "How did you get in here?"
Goth kid gave him dead eyes and raised a judgmental eyebrow, "Fire escape. I needed to talk to Percy. Who are you?"
"That's my brother, Jason," Percy said distractedly.
"Jason? Since when do you have another brother?" Goth kid asked, "You're the only one in your cabin." What? Cabin?
Percy sent Goth kid a warning glance before saying, "He's my brother on my mom's side. I found out about him in April. He's cool." Jason resisted the urge to scowl. Apparently, he wasn't cool enough for Percy to tell his friends about him.
Goth kid shrugged, "Whatever. Hi, Sally. Hi, Paul."
Paul looked a little discomforted by the sight of Goth kid and just managed a strangled, "Hi."
Sally, however, gave him a warm smile, "Hello, Nico. It's good to see you. We haven't seen you in a while. And Percy said you haven't been at camp all that much?"
"I've been spending some time with my dad," Nico admitted with a grimace. Jason resisted the urge to raise his eyebrow. Were complicated father situations necessary in this household?
Sally smiled sympathetically and asked carefully, "Did you want to crash here for the night? We've got the couch open."
Nico shared a significant look with Percy before saying, "No, thank you."
Percy grimaced and sent Jason and Paul pained looks before turning to Sally and saying quietly, "Nico's got a plan. I don't like it, but I think it's our best shot. We – we're leaving tonight. I'll probably go straight back to camp once we've gone through with the plan. I won't see you until September, probably."
Sally licked her lips, obviously trying to keep her composure. Jason wasn't sure what was going on or what plan Percy and Goth kid were doing, but none of this sounded good. Jason suddenly felt like an outsider, something that the Jacksons had tried their best to prevent him from feeling. Thankfully, Paul looked just as uncomfortable and ostracized as Jason felt. Sally eventually managed to get out, "I know you're going to be busy on your birthday, but won't you come back the day afterwards?"
Both Percy and Nico grimaced at the question. They shared a serious look before Percy answered, "I'll do my best, Mom." He leaned down and pulled her into a hug, "I love you, Mom."
She sniffled, "I love you, too, Percy. You too, Nico. You two be careful, alright? I'll see you after your birthday, Percy."
Percy and Nico shared that look again before Percy said sadly, "Sure, Mom." He grabbed a bag that Jason hadn't noticed and nodded to Jason and Paul, "Bye Paul. Bye Jason."
"Bye, Percy," Jason said, hesitantly. Something about this whole situation didn't feel right. Percy had a look on his face that said he was going to his executioner. He sounded like he was saying goodbye for good. Jason made a note to check up on Percy's status throughout the rest of the summer.
Once Percy had walked out the door, Sally slumped like a puppet who'd had its strings cut. Jason asked, "Do I want to know what just happened?"
"No," Sally smiled, "Probably not. Percy will be fine. He's just – just being dramatic." No one commented on the fact that she was obviously lying. Instead, they all just fell back into their conversation.
Jason went home. Sally visited him a few times. He made sure to call her intermittently.
And then Manhattan shut down. Weird energy surges, sleeping citizens, an inability to get in or out of the city. The entire Justice League and all their partners worked at the problem, trying to figure out what was going on. Superman couldn't even see into the city. Jason couldn't help his worry, his fear. His mom and brother were in there. Were they alright?
And then the fog around Manhattan disappeared to reveal what seemed to be a warzone. No one could say what happened. The cameras were all down. All of them. The area around the Empire State building looked like a tornado had shot through it. There was an enormous new tree in the middle of Central Park. No one could explain a single bit of it.
Sally and Paul were alright, though. Jason had split away from the other heroes and changed into his civvies, racing towards their apartment as quickly as could. They were sitting there; relief open on their faces and an obvious weight lifted from their shoulders. They reassured him that Percy was alright, too. Apparently, he was at his camp. Jason thought Percy was crazy. Jason had been out of his mind with worry when he'd heard what happened. He'd dropped everything to go see if Sally, Paul, and Percy were alright. But Percy was at his camp instead? Jason wondered what was so special about this camp that Percy was always willing to give up so much family time for it.
It didn't matter at the moment. All that mattered was that Jason's family was safe. They were alright. All was good with the world.
(Until, of course, it really, really wasn't.
Then Jason came back. Or, well, a piece of him came back.)
They used Sally to bring Jason out of his craze. Of course, that didn't mean he wasn't going to keep being Red Hood and it didn't mean he was going to go completely goody two shoes, but, well, it was something. Probably more than they would have gotten if they hadn't used her.
It hurt that this was how Sally found out that Jason was a superhero (antihero? Villain?), but a large part of Jason was glad that she knew. He'd immediately wanted to tell Percy, too. His brother should know. Dick's tired face gave away the game before his words did. Percy was missing. Gone since December. His girlfriend had gone crazy looking for him. She'd even dropped school even though she was so smart just so she could devote herself to the search. Apparently, all of his friends were like that. The search had been going on for months.
It took the combined forces of Sally, Paul, and the Bat Family to stop Jason from going on another war path and destroying himself on his search for Percy. Still, that didn't mean that he stopped looking. He never stopped looking.
June found Jason lounging in the living room of the Wayne manor, Dick, Wally, Roy, and Kaldur sprawled around him. They'd been casually eating and talking on a rare day off for all of them, just relaxing in the moment.
Dick's ringing phone caused groans to echo through the room. Wally threw a piece of popcorn at his best friend, "C'mon man, turn that thing off. We were having a good time!"
"It might be important!" Dick argued, fending Roy off with one hand as he answered his phone without looking, "Hello, this is Dick Grayson. How may I help you?" Roy made a gagging motion and Dick rolled his eyes. And then Dick sat straight up and yelped, almost dropping his phone as he tried to put it on speakerphone. He squeaked, "Percy?!"
Jason sat up straight as well, mouth falling open. The others squinted, curious. They hadn't met Percy as far as Jason knew. He wasn't even sure if anyone even told them about him.
The voice that answered through the phone was tired and worn down and emotional, but undoubtedly Percy's. Percy said, "Yeah, Dick, it's me."
Jason interrupted before Percy could say any more, "Percy!"
There was a long pause before Percy spoke into the phone, voice somewhat lost, "I… what? Jason? I… Are my memories wrong? I know I don't have all of them back, but I definitely remember you dying. Am I getting incorrect memories now, too? Do I have to worry about the state of my memories?" He sounded like he was getting genuinely worked up.
Jason inwardly cursed and tried to calm him down, "No, no. I died. I, uh, came back to life. It's a complicated story. Dude, where are you? You've been missing for almost eight months now! Wherever you are, we can come get you!"
"No," Percy said, stern and determined and so reminiscent of that determined kid who'd left with Nico all those months ago that Jason's heart skipped a beat in his chest. Percy continued after a moment, softer, "No, I can't tell you where I am. I just – I just called to let you know that I'm alive. That I'm alright. I already called Mom and Paul, but I just got the answering machine. I don't have a lot of time left on the phone, though. I'm going to have to go. I just wanted to let you know that I was alright."
"When are you coming home?" Jason pleaded, fingers clenched in his lap.
There was another pause before Percy admitted, "I don't know. I'm sorry, Jason. I wish I could give you a better answer. I hope soon, but… I don't know. I'll be alright, though."
"What's going on?" Dick asked, jaw clenched in frustration even as he had his tracking software working, "We can help with whatever it is."
Percy laughed, soft and tired, "No, you can't. I don't entirely know what's going on, but I am so glad you're back, Jason. My memories are a little shaky, but I remember missing you a lot. Stay out of trouble until I get back, alright?"
"Don't you dare," Jason growled, letting a bit of the Lazarus Pit creep into his voice.
Percy wasn't even phased although the rest of the occupants of the room leaned back a little bit. He just said, "Bye, Jason." And the phone clicked off.
Jason resisted the urge to break something. He resisted urge to throw something. He tried really, really hard to keep himself under control. He growled out, "Tell me you found him."
There was a short pause before Dick said, "Yep. He's in Alaska. I've sent Wally the coordinates." There was a blur of yellow and then Wally was gone. His comms linked activated a second later.
Roy spoke hesitantly into the silence that followed afterwards, "Who is Percy?"
"He's my half brother on my mom's side," Jason answered shortly.
"Right," Roy said, turning to the others for a better explanation. Kaldur just shrugged at him, just as confused.
It was Dick who explained, "You know how Jason's story with Sally goes. About a year after Jason was born, Sally met someone else. I… I don't actually know who. No one's told me or Jason. But she met someone else and ended up getting pregnant with Percy. When Percy was fifteen, Jason reached out to Sally to reconnect and Sally ended up bringing Percy with her eventually. Even though Percy was gone a lot for his summer camp, we all became good friends. Then, in early December, Percy went missing. He just up and disappeared. I told Wally about Percy just so he could help with the search and I know a couple of other heroes were looking. The police were looking. Percy's family was looking. I think his entire camp was looking. His girlfriend actually quit school to look for him."
"Dang," Roy muttered.
"Dang is right," Wally added as he ran, "I met her once when I was helping with the search. She is one of the singularly most terrifying people I have ever met in my life. And that's saying something considering the kind of life we live."
Jason, reluctantly, felt a hint of humor returning to him, "You think Annabeth is bad? You should meet Percy's cousin. Her name's Thalia and I've never been more instantly afraid of a person in my life. Give me a supervillain over her any day of the week."
Wally snorted. There was a quiet skidding sound and then Wally spoke into the comms again, "Alright, I'm here. It's… a train station. I have to assume that the train's already left the station."
"Can you check the trains that are leaving? It hasn't been that long," Dick said reasonably, placing a calming hand on Jason's arm. Jason shrugged it off and scowled at Dick.
"Will do," Wally said, "Give me a second." There was a whooshing sound before Wally exclaimed, "Percy!"
Through the comms, they heard startled exclamations (there were three – Percy, a girl's, and another boy's). There was a snapping sound and quiet murmuring. It sounded like Percy's voice, but Jason couldn't be sure. He leaned forward to listen closer.
There was a whooshing sound again. The group waited in tense silence as it continued on and on. What had happened? Had he found Percy? What was taking him so long? Were there really that many trains?
Then, suddenly, in a burst of lightning, Wally flew into the living room, quickly stripping out of his suit and back into his civvies. Dick blinked at him in confusion, "What are you doing back here?"
Wally sighed and flopped onto a couch, "He wasn't on any of the trains."
"You said his name! You sounded like you'd found him! I definitely heard his voice," Jason said, eyes flashing as his nails bit into his skin.
Wally frowned in confusion, "I never found him?"
"Then why'd you say his name?" Roy asked.
"I didn't," Wally said. He paused, "Did I?"
"Yes?" Dick said, "You stopped. You said Percy. There was a snapping noise. Someone said something. And then you apparently returned here."
Wally shook his head, "That's false. I would know. I was there. I just ran through all the trains and came back when he wasn't in any of them."
"Wally," Kaldur said slowly, "We all heard you say that you found Percy."
Eyes wide in disbelief, Wally asked quietly, "Do you think someone whammied me? Am I alright? Does that mean that Percy's on one of those trains? Should I go back?"
"Probably not," Dick said, "We need to get more information. If someone's capable of making you forget like that, then we can't rush in." He was about to say more when he got a notification from his wrist computer. Frowning, Dick muttered, "It's Sally." They'd given her access to this mode of communication when they'd told her who they were.
Dick opened the communication message and a holographic screen showing Sally popped up. There were tears in her eyes, but there was also a real smile on her face for the first time in a long time. Jason leaned forward, "Mom? You alright?"
"Percy called us!" Sally said, delighted, "He's alright! He's going to be gone for a little bit longer, but he's alright. I know Annabeth is getting a group together to go after him. They're fairly certain they know where he's heading. They'll bring him back to us."
"Wait," Jason asked, "How does Annabeth know where he is? He called us, too, and he wouldn't tell us a thing. He said that we couldn't help him. What's going on? We sent Wally to the place where the phone call came from and he found Percy on a train, but there was a snapping noise, and someone said something – we couldn't hear what – and Wally came back here with no memory of seeing Percy. Have you heard of that before? Mom, what's happening? We can help. We're heroes. Percy doesn't have to deal with this alone."
Sally gave him such a sad look. Her hand lifted slightly like she wanted to reach through the screen to him. Eventually, she put her hand down, settling it over her heart. Sally said, "You can't help him with this, Jason. I'm sorry."
"What are you keeping from me?" Jason shouted.
Sally's lips pursed and she shook her head, "I'm sorry, honey. I really, really am. It's not my secret to tell. We just – we just have to trust in Percy. We have to trust in him. I know he's your little brother. I know you're frustrated that neither of us will explain what's going on. Even I don't properly know what's going on. Please just trust us. Please?"
And Jason never could say no to her, not from the first time they met. Sally was a type of pure strength that Jason had always aspired to but would never really achieve. You just couldn't say no to her. So, Jason allowed his eyes to slip closed and whispered, "Yeah, okay. I'll trust you." She smiled and signed off.
Around him, the others closed ranks, making sure that he was alright. But all Jason could think about was Percy, out there without him. He hoped Percy never had to face the kinds of things that Jason faced as a hero. He hoped that Percy never had to fight someone (he knew that was a naïve hope – Percy had been coerced into a trip that spanned the entire country, involved terrorist acts and a kidnapped mother, and ended with him fighting a huge man on a beach when he was twelve years old. From small admittances and quiet explanations of where he went, Jason knew that Percy had seen a frankly appalling amount of death by the time he was sixteen). He hoped Percy lived.
Percy jiggled his knee anxiously. He knew that Annabeth was spending some time with her family. He knew that she was a phone call away. He knew that she had some nearby dryads watching her carefully to make sure she was safe. He knew that. It still didn't stop the anxiety that itched under his skin (didn't stop the memory of her blind and screaming for him in a land of horror and pain and toxic air and -).
During the desperate flight back to Camp Half-Blood, Percy had been alright partially due to shock and partially due to the idea of a mission that needed to be completed. That didn't mean he hadn't been a changed person already at that point, but it had manifested in nightmares and tears and adrenalin rushes that sent him charging recklessly into battle (some of the oldest campers had admitted quietly that Percy had always kind of scared them with his huge amount of power, but he'd properly terrified him that day, fighting Gaea's armies; they admitted that he'd looked more like a monster than a demigod, covered in glittered golden dust, the air and water and dirt ripping around him with deadly precision). Now? Now it was anxiety and irritability and sudden flashes back to that place.
He was doing better than he could have been doing because he had an amazing support system, but it was still hard.
Percy flinched when the taxi pulled to a stop in front of the Wayne manor. He hadn't realized that they were there. He hadn't even noticed the huge building that had never failed to draw his attention before. When Percy looked around the car, he realized that Sally was watching him, carefully scrutinizing his features. He mustered up a smile for her, "Should we go?"
Sighing, Sally smiled tiredly at him (he hated that she was still feeling worried, hated that all he could do was cause her pain, hated that he hated himself, hated that somedays he thought it would have been better for everyone else if he'd been left in that place because he wasn't entirely sure that it was him who'd come out) and nodded.
They carefully exited the taxi and paid. Standing on the steps was a larger group of people than there were the first time Percy had been there. Bruce was there. So was Alfred and Dick. Dick had his arm around Wally which was a nice change. There was a teenager, probably not much younger than Percy, watching Percy and Sally curiously. And then there was Jason.
Unbelievable. He was actually alive. Percy had known that, had accepted that. But it was different to see it in person. Jason smirked at him as Percy and Sally climbed the stairs, "You look awful."
"Still better than you, probably," Percy shot back easily. Jason laughed loudly and grabbed him into a big hug, projecting all his motions. Percy wasn't sure if that was on purpose or not, but he appreciated it all the same.
"Seriously, though," Jason said as they separated and he gave Sally a small hug, "You really do look awful."
"I'm well aware," Percy said wryly. He could tell that Jason was fishing. It was the same thing Paul and some of the campers and even Sally had done since he returned. He wasn't going to talk about it, though. Not yet. He'd talk about it to Annabeth and Nico if they brought it up, but nothing else. Not yet. Not yet.
Jason frowned when he realized that Percy wasn't falling into his trap. They turned and walked off towards the entertaining room they usually used. Percy gestured slightly at Dick and Wally, "That's new. There's also a new person here you rudely haven't introduced me to."
Dick cackled, "Yeah, Wally finally figured out what he wanted, so here we are. This little kiddo is Tim. We've, uh, got some things to explain to you."
Percy raised an eyebrow. He allowed Sally to fuss over him as he was settled into a chair. He shifted the slightest bit to the side to make sure that he got a view that put the least amount of open space behind him. The others definitely noticed his actions but didn't say anything. Percy started fiddling with Riptide absentmindedly.
It was Bruce who started the explanation, "We've already told Sally all of this and we figured it was only fair to tell you as well. We're all superheroes. I'm Batman. Dick is Nightwing. Jason is Red Hood. Tim is the current Robin."
Huh. That hadn't been expected. Then again, it was Percy's life they were talking about. Nothing could be normal, could it? He teased, "You're all superheroes? Even you, Alfred? And who's Red Hood?"
Alfred smiled gently at Percy, "I go by Agent A in the field, Master Percy." Sally choked on her tea next to him. Alfred sent Percy a wink.
Jason, however, winced at the questions, "The Red Hood bit has to do with how I came back." He trailed off, going silent after the admission.
"Okay," Percy said, "It's fine if you don't want to tell me."
"No, that's not it!" Jason said. He squinted suspiciously at Percy, "You're taking this all awfully well."
Percy shrugged, "It takes a lot to surprise me." Sally chuckled lightly into her tea. Percy shared a smile with her.
Jason shook his head with a sigh and started explaining the story of his death and rebirth. It was bloody and gruesome and awful. Percy wished he'd have been there to help out. Jason winced when he admitted to some of the things he had done. Percy wanted to reassure him, to tell him that Percy had done much, much worse.
Dick quietly interrupted Percy's inner musings, "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine," Percy answered, sick to death of that question.
Dick's eyes flickered downwards slightly before he said softly, "You're hurting yourself."
The room turned tense as Percy looked down and saw that he'd been digging his fingers tightly into his skin. He'd broken it at some point, his blood shining on his nails. Percy felt ill. He loosened the fist, breathing in and out sharply. Annabeth. He wanted Annabeth.
Like an answer from the gods, Sally's phone rang at that exact moment. Sally pulled it out, sending Percy a careful glance. She answered without looking to see who it was, "Hello, how may I help you?" She blinked before saying, "Oh, yes, of course! He's right here."
She gently handed the phone over to Percy who wiped his bloody hands off on a napkin that Alfred thankfully provided. He grabbed the phone and held it to his ear, "Hello?"
"Percy?" Annabeth asked quietly from the other end.
Percy felt his eyes slip shut in relief, "Yeah. Give me a second." He turned back to the group, "Could I take this phone call for a moment?" They nodded to him, obviously treating him like glass. It caused a dull anger to roil around under his skin for a moment, but it settled quickly. He was too tired to feel angry. He settled against the wall not far from the room his family was in. He put the phone back up to his ear and closed his eyes, sinking to the floor, "Hey, Annabeth. Missed you." She chuckled quietly back into the phone.
It was a half an hour before they both felt centered enough to go back to their respective families. Percy walked lightly into the room, expecting the sudden silence that fell at his reappearance. He gingerly sat back in his same seat and handed the phone back to his mom.
He spoke into the silence of the room, "I'm not ready to talk about what happened. Yes, I was missing for a very long time. Yes, some of it was bad. Yes, there was a lot of good, too. I made some new friends. I… lost some friends. I… was somewhere… bad. I won't talk about it yet. Someday, I will, but not now."
"It's okay if you won't talk to us," Sally said, gently grabbing his hand, avoiding the self-inflicted cuts, "But please talk to someone."
"Annabeth and Nico were in the same place I was. I talk to them," Percy said. Sally pursed her lips, but eventually nodded.
Across the room, Jason wrinkled his nose, "Nico? That's the Goth kid you ran off with before your sixteenth, right?"
Percy rolled his eyes, "My cousin, yes."
Jason reared back, "He was your cousin? He looked like a creepy skeleton. Thalia, I could believe is your cousin. That kid?"
Percy smiled slightly, "I'll make sure to tell him that you don't think he looks like he should be related to me. You should see the two new cousins I found over the time I was gone. They look even less like me than Nico."
"Genetics are wacky," Wally offered. Percy snorted. He had no idea.
Conversation picked up after that point, Tim actually adding a comment or two as he started to get more comfortable. Percy noticed that everyone would send him concerned glances from time to time, obviously concerned, especially with his silence.
The only one who didn't send Percy worried looks was Jason. Jason was giving him looks that said he understood. And, obviously Jason didn't understand. He could never understand. Jason was too mortal to survive in Tartarus. He wouldn't last a minute. But Jason had been dead and had been ripped back from death. He'd willing admitted that he felt as if he left a piece of his soul in that Pit. That at least, Jason would be able to relate to. Percy felt like he left a piece of his soul in Tartarus.
Someday, he'd tell Jason everything. He'd stop keeping secrets and he'd finally trust his brother fully. That day wasn't today, but that was alright. Jason seemed alright with it.
Percy would take some time to heal and then he would finally, finally tell the truth.
Jason groaned as the monster of the week threw him through a wall. The monster couldn't be hurt by 'mortal weapons' as Diana said it and thought that their punches were measly taps. Even Superboy could barely make a dent. On the plus side, the monster also threw Dick and Superboy in at the exact same time, so Jason didn't feel too bad. He was also pretty sure that the only reason he went through the wall instead of against it was because Kon had been thrown with him, so that was something, too.
Still, it freaking hurt.
A dramatic sounding groan from inside the shop made Jason still. Were there civilians? What were they still doing here? They must have heard the fight!
A girl groaned angrily, "I just want to eat my food in peace! Is that too much to ask?"
"Of course it is," a boy muttered, just as frustrated, "We've got unlucky charms Percy and Thalia here."
"What?" Percy (Percy actual Jackson! What was he doing in Happy Harbor? Why did he not leave when the battle started? That idiot!) squawked, "Why are we the only unlucky charms?"
"Think about your parents and when you were born," Nico answered. Percy sighed.
Slowly, Jason picked himself up from the ground. Behind him, monster of the week tore the entire wall off of the restaurant, revealing it and the various heroes trying to take it down. Jason stood up shakily (there was probably a concussion somewhere). Sat at a table, nonchalant as can be, were Percy, Annabeth, Thalia, Nico, and a host of other teenagers that Jason didn't recognize.
Percy glanced over, blinked once, and then asked, "Jason?" Jason was going to kill him, no matter what their mother wanted.
Then, out of nowhere, Diana of Themyscira, who had never met Percy sighed and clicked her tongue, "Secret identities, Percy."
"Ah, sorry about that, Di," Percy threw back. Jason gaped from beneath his mask. What other dimension did he end up in? Literally what was happening? He was only gratified by the knowledge that no one else knew what was going on.
"Jeez, Seaweed Brain," Annabeth sighed. Percy just rolled his eyes.
Diana grunted as she flew out of the way of an especially well-aimed tail attack. She glared back at the group, "Are you going to help?"
"Help?" one of the boys yelped, "Are you serious? No way!"
Diana gave them all her disappointed glare, "Get out here and help! It's one of ours! Mortal weapons cannot break it's skin."
A blonde boy groaned, slamming his head on the table in front of him. A pretty girl next to him patted his back in consolation.
Percy growled, "You know what? You've already given away more than you were supposed to. You get to do the explaining in case you're wondering. Get the heroes away. I'll take care of it."
"Want any help?" Thalia asked. Without waiting for his answer, she went back to eating his food.
Obviously aggravated, Percy sighed, "No. It's fine. I've got this one." She waved a disinterested hand in response. Percy rolled his eyes.
More than confused, the heroes pulled back at Diana's request, standing in the middle of the destroyed diner. Jason jerked forward as Percy started moving towards the monster. Diana grabbed him and yanked him back. Jason tried to struggle out of her grip, "Let me go! That's my brother! Percy! What are you doing?"
Percy turned and grinned at him, "You know I've been keeping secrets." He grabbed his hoodie, did something complicated with the strings and then pulled it over his head. The hoodie transformed into a helm, the transformation taking over all of his clothing as shiny armor took over. He tapped his favored watch and it expanded into an incredibly intricate shield that depicted incredible battles. Then he grabbed that stupid pen of his. He uncapped it for the first time in Jason's memory and… it turned into an actual sword.
"I am so confused," Jason announced pitifully, still hanging limply from Diana's arms. She shifted him so he was held in one arm and then patted him on the head.
Percy strode forward. He paused before the monster and announced, "I am Percy Jackson. If you know what's good for you, you'll go back to Tartarus where you belong." Dick mouthed the word 'Tartarus' incredulously. What was happening?
The monster screamed at him in response. Percy just rolled his eyes, "Fine. Have it your way."
And then he moved. It wasn't necessarily that much faster or superhuman than the moves that Jason saw in the heroes around him. It was just the fluidity, the grace, the ease that he did it that surprised Jason. It was the same kind of movements he saw in Diana. The same movements he saw in the Amazons. These were the movements of someone who had not only been born to wield a sword, but who had been trained for a long time to do it properly. Jason was shell-shocked at the thought that his little brother fit in that category. Behind him, Percy's friends continued eating and talking as if this was normal. Maybe it was (maybe Jason didn't want to think about that).
Percy hacked and sliced at the thing, doing more damage in a minute than the Justice League had done in forty. Even Diana looked impressed and she'd done the most damage (this was, mostly, because her sword actually worked on the beast. It appeared that Percy's expertly wielded pen-sword worked too. Who would have guessed?).
The monster finally caught Percy around the middle and he grunted as he was thrown back. He threw his hand out and a nearby fire hydrant broke. Percy grabbed the water with his mind and used it to cushion him. He promptly went back to fighting the monster while floating off the ground, standing in the middle of an actual mini-hurricane.
Jason was going to have a heart attack before the day was over.
Percy killed the monster in three minutes. Jason wasn't even jealous he was so confused.
And then Percy just… sat back down. And started eating again. Annabeth brushed a bit of golden dust out of Percy's hair and kissed his cheek. The girl who'd first spoken grunted that Percy had missed a few openings. Thalia griped that she could have done it faster. Jason couldn't even with these people.
It was Dick who found his voice first, screeching, "Are you going to explain that?"
"Diana said she would," Percy answered without even looking up.
Diana smirked at Percy before turning to the heroes and announcing very seriously, "You know from my own past and race that the world of Greek mythology is true. As such, there are also demigods. This group of people are this generations most famous demigods. The Heroes of Olympus most of them are called. Percy is the demigod son of Poseidon and has been leading the other Greek demigods in wars and saving the world since he was twelve years old."
"Oh my gods," Percy said, beet red, "Please don't embarrass me." Jason wondered why he'd never noticed that Percy said 'gods' before. Willful ignorance, probably. He still felt a bit faint.
Jason sat down hard in the concrete dust. Percy peered at him in concern. Jason looked over to him, "When we first met, you said that you had many siblings. You actually meant you had thousands of years worth of siblings. And you still say that I'm one of the highest on your list of favorite siblings."
Percy's eyebrows drew together in confusion for a moment before he started laughing and laughing. Eventually, Jason joined in. Percy was definitely his favorite brother.
Author's Note: Haha, just a silly little thing that ended up being over double my planned word count and definitely more depressing than I'd intended (are we surprised, though?). Let me know what you thought!