A/N - Hello! This is chapter 2 of Miss Minerva's Academy.
Read and enjoy!
Chapter 2 – Athena always has a plan
Miss Minerva's Academy
In Annabeth's opinion, The Empire of Olympus had a pretty simple geography. It was divided into thirteen provinces and each province had a ruling noble who controlled the administration of the province.
The largest province was called Olympia and it was the capital city of the empire. It was ruled by High King Zeus. His wife, Queen Hera was the Grand duchess of the second-largest province, Argos. In the initial years of their marriage, Zeus and Hera had united their provinces, but over the years Hera could not tolerate her husband's infidelity and decided to rule Argos independently.
Zeus had two brothers – Grand Dukes Poseidon and Hades. Lord Poseidon ruled the island province of Atlantis. Though small in size, Atlantis was known for its unique residents. The mer-people of Atlantis were the only true mythical creatures still alive. Poseidon's first wife, Lady Amphitrite was of mermaid descent herself.
Lord Hades controlled Erebus, the richest province in Olympus. It was famous for its gemstone and mineral deposits. Although very few people lived in Erebus, they were considered the richest and most influential people in the kingdom.
The northern province of Cnidus was ruled by Madame Aphrodite. She was called the most beautiful woman on Earth and had a huge harem of men at her service. Cnidus was initially under the power of King Eros but he was overthrown by Aphrodite. (Reference to my story - Queen of Hearts) It was rumored that the queen and her children had the power to convince anyone to bend to their will.
The southern province was Crete, ruled by Baroness Demeter. It was an agricultural province renowned for its fertile lands and plentiful rivers. It was the most populated province in Olympus, even if it was small in size. The Baroness and her family were known to be simple, hardworking people and tended to avoid splurging their money on unnecessary luxuries.
On the East and the West, the provinces of Delphi and Delos guarded the Empire. Delphi was ruled by the vivacious Prince Apollo while Delos was ruled by the huntress Princess Artemis. They were twins but were as different as the sun and the moon. Artemis was feared all throughout the land for her man-hating reputation while Apollo was considered the most eligible bachelor because of his flashy and flirtatious nature.
On the peak of Mount Vulcan lay the city of Infernos, which was ruled by the half-giant king Hephaestus. The city was famous for its unique crafts and housed the largest forge in Olympus.
Earl Hermes governed Mercuria. His kingdom acted as a messenger and mediator between the capital city and the other provinces. Very little was known about the Castellan family; the royal family of Mercuria, other than the fact that the Earl was the most prominent member. It was also the province with highest crime rate.
The smallest province, Thebes was controlled by Count Dionysus. Thebes produced the best wine in the Empire, and the wine from the royal gardens was so expensive that even most rulers could not afford it every day.
Prince Ares ruled Sparta, the military capital of the Empire. He was a well-respected general but Annabeth personally thought that he had a rotten attitude. She hated him with a burning passion because he had declared that no woman could enter the imperial army.
Finally, there was Athens, the province ruled by Duchess Athena, Annabeth's mother. In Annabeth's professional opinion, it was the best designed province. All the foreign ambassadors who came to Athens praised the city's architectural beauty. Athens was the center of knowledge and students from all over the empire arrived every year to study at the University of Athens. The city's most prized possession was the Diamond Throne, carved with protective charms from millions of languages, some so ancient that even Athena could not understand them. It was Annabeth's ambition to understand at least a tenth of those languages.
But every city had its secrets and Athens had the biggest of them all.
In the center of the ducal mansion, a single chamber was present. The chamber was so heavily guarded that anyone within a hundred - meter radius would be detected. If a normal person tried to enter the chamber, they would see a plain old storage room with dusty floors and cobwebs on the ceiling, but with a touch of the right person, it would transform into the library of secrets.
Only Duchess Athena could activate the entrance to the library and even she could not enter the chamber unless authorized by every single ruler of the empire. It held the key to the biggest secrets of the Empire, and no one knew what it was.
While the library of secrets was indeed the biggest mystery of Empire, there was a close second.
When the male-dominated Olympian council prohibited women from entering the Army, the female rulers could not tolerate it. Hera, Demeter, Aphrodite, Athena and Artemis decided to meet in Athens as it was the most secure of all the provinces.
The council room of Athens had become the stronghold of the powerful women. Athena asked the maids and guards to leave the chamber and sat quietly, examining the walls.
Hera, impatient that nothing was happening, decided to speak up. "Athena – what are you doing? We came here to discuss something import-"Before she could finish her sentence, a small dagger shot out from Athena's hand, impaling the wall behind Hera's seat.
Enraged, the queen stood up and started screaming, "What is the meaning of this?"
Seeing this, the woman in the emerald robe – Baroness Demeter- shook her head in exasperation. She spoke in a tired voice
"Hera, calm down and look. There was a listening device behind you. Athena was making sure that we are alone." And true to her word, there was a small device impaled on Athena's dagger.
Embarrassed, Hera sat back onto her seat.
Athena, dressed in a simple grey dress rose regally from her seat. She calmly walked to her dagger and picked it up. Twirling it expertly between her fingers, she spoke in a calm but powerful voice.
"Ladies, we have gathered here today to undo the injustice done to the women of Olympia. Earlier this week, the Olympian council met at the capital. With 6 councilors voting for the motion, it was decided that women would not be allowed to join the imperial army of Olympus."
As she spoke, Athena's grey eyes flashed in anger. She looked at Artemis to continue.
"Those useless men think they are better than us. I bet I can beat all of them in an archery match. Egoistic bastards."
"That useless husband of mine – I so wish I could kill him."
"Women work much harder than men. My daughter Katie can easily smash Dionysus's sons to pulp."
"I should have shot Apollo right in his-"
"Ladies" A soft voice echoed through the room. "Please focus."
Aphrodite's words seemed so convincing that the other women lost their anger and sat down.
"Thank you Madame" Athena said, nodding her head gratefully at Aphrodite. "As much as I would love to discuss murder tactics, we do not have time for that. Now please let me put forward my plan."
Athena walked towards the wall behind her seat and pressed a finger delicately to it. The wall seemed to turn and a huge screen appeared in its place with the symbol of Athens – a snow white owl with open wings – glowing on it.
Artemis looked surprised, and asked Athena
"How did you come up with a plan so soon duchess?"
Athena looked at Artemis as if her question made no sense and Hera laughed loudly
"Dear Artemis, you must know by now. Athena always has a plan"
Did you guys like this chapter? This chapter is longer than the previous one.
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