PIPER

Piper got her name from her Grandpa Tom, who noted her powerful voice and hoped that she would one day learn all of the great Cherokee songs, including the Song of the Snakes. As opposed to many other children of Aphrodite, Piper was never very focused on her natural beauty and has a somewhat tomboyish style.

Piper was that kid growing up, whose father was rich and people sucked up to her in hopes of getting invited to her home, or getting extravagant gifts for their birthdays. Piper realized quickly that she had to be wary of who she made friends with and had become rather closed off and had been somewhat lonely, her father noting this opted to have her homeschooled for a couple of years.

It was then, when one day her father took her to the shoot of his new movie, she helped her actor father research Greek mythology) and learned quite a bit of information that she found interesting, instead of playing with the dresses of the princesses or taking tips from the hairstylist on the set, Piper had opted to wear gladiator armor and had begged the fencing master who taught the actors basic fighting, to teach her some simple moves. Piper couldn't lift the sword back then so she used a dummy dagger which later led to the dagger being her weapon of choice.

Her father would also tell her old Cherokee stories he heard from Grandpa Tom. From time to time, Piper and her father would play a game called "Any Three Questions," in which Piper would ask her father any three questions of her choice and he had to answer them without lying. Her main intention was to find out more about her mother who apparently left after she was born. However, Piper wasn't able to learn much about her mother.

In addition, Piper has always had the ability to charmspeak and used it (not knowingly) to gain her father's attention by "borrowing" things from salesmen, causing her to get into trouble with the law when the people report her for stealing. At one point, she talked a car dealer into giving her a BMW and drove it away from the lot. She only stole items because she wanted attention from her father, who she believed wasn't spending enough time with her.

The dealer pressed charges for theft after Piper took the BMW and realized that he had been tricked. Her father's assistant, Jane, made a deal for her to be sent to Wilderness School, terminating her years when she was homeschooled she had cried and fought but, a place for delinquent kids was better than going to jail.

It was there that she met Leo who hung around her told her bad jokes and played pranks on the bullies, and the two formed a friendship, she even trusted him with the truth that her father is the movie star Tristan McLean, something that she kept a secret to most. Wilderness School sucked, the food was dry and bland, the children were rude and the teachers treated them like prisoners

They had run away after a particularly horrible day, they packed their bags jumped over the wall and walked into the woods they reached deep into the woods after a day or two and were about to come out when they ran into Annabeth and Thalia along Grover on a Quest.

And that was when the shitstorm caught up with her, the Titan War, demigods turning, going on Quests was the next few months of her life were a blur after reaching New York she went to Camp, Camp got destroyed went after that she went to Olympus fought for her life, Olympus got destroyed yeah basically everywhere she went the place got destroyed, so you could see how she was not happy when Leo proposed an experiment that could potentially destroy the bunker.

Laughter rippled through the firepit where the whole Bunker was gathered, they were having their rare every six months Bunker meeting where all of the Bunker gathered, it was so the younger campers feelt more included and also got some exposure on how the Bunker was run and how things generally worked.

Piper even saw Annabeth crack a smile, which was rare, it had been 2 months since they had retrieved the prophecy from Ella, after they had retrieved the buttload of Hephaestus weapons everyone had begun to get ready for the imminent war that was coming, they had polished the weapons Hephaestus cabin had made them as better as they could and all the spears were rubbed against a stone till the points where the tip could slice your finger with a gentle push.

Weapons classes had been doubled and the instructors were training everyone hard and Percy and Jason were training the instructors to their breaking point, Archery class attendance had spiked since nobody had to share bows now and had to shoot the arrows lower so the points wouldn't break all classes had been doubled and monster fighting classes were now specifically focused on the monsters that Kronos's army had the last time.

While the new regime that made the weaker or up and coming fighters prepared was strenuous and laborious the regime that applied to the veterans was back breaking work, they fought against each other for about 4 hours a day and that along with the normal classes and the classes that they taught had taken the toll on them.

But the people who were under the most stress right now were Jason. Annabeth and Percy, the prophecy hadn't been revealed to anyone but Percy and Jason yet, Percy said he had a vision where the three of them were the only ones who should read the prophecy, which Piper thought was bull but Annabeth and Jason had backed him up, the stress of the prophecy was clearly showing, Jason and Percy were tired and Percy's energetic self, had gone he only talked to Piper, Leo, Annabeth and Jason now occasionally talking to Beck and Silena and the only kid he talked to was Nico.

Nico… he was still somewhat of a conundrum to Piper, she was shocked when she heard he was the son of Hades, but got over it quickly what with Percy and the Quests her brain had just stopped working and just simply processed that Nico was a son of Hades, she remembered Annabeth's reaction which had been surprisingly calm.

"Hey Annie, you busy" asked Percy, standing outside of Annabeth's Office/workspace with Piper with Nico in the tow, Piper sucked in a breath Annabeth did not like nicknames. "Umm no, you can come in" replied Annabeth, Percy made eye contact with Piper took a deep breath and slowly pushed opened the door, Piper was feeling like a parent coming to her child's PTM, incredibly nervous and apprehensive, the door opened with a creak that made Piper wince.

"Hey Perce, Piper what's up" Annabeth smiled at them, Percy took a deep breath and said "Well Piper here has something to say to you", Piper glared at him and was about to elbow him when she noticed that Annabeth was looking at her expectantly, "Annabeth don't freak out" Piper began, Annabeth's eyes narrowed "Nico here is a Son of Hades", Piper finished nervously waiting for her reaction.

"Yeah right" said Annabeth laughing a little, "Guys are you done with your prank now, I have to get back to work", "Yes that was a prank" said Percy shakily and tried to make his way out of the door but Piper was faster, she pulled him hard "Oh you are not leaving me alone for this mister", "What's going on, why's Piper pulling you Percy?" Annabeth questioned a little perplexed. "We aren't kidding Annabeth and also we would never pull a crass prank like that" said Percy.

"He…What….Hades?" Annabeth mumbled, Nico was looking a tad bit afraid, Annabeth composed herself and said in a forced calm voice "When did you get to know about this?".

"When Nico stabbed the cyclopes saving you, that's when he introduced himself, I decided not to tell as we had just began trusting each other, and then the Quest happened I told Piper, Jason a few others and now… well I'm telling you" Percy rambled.

"So Piper and a lot of other guys knew about Nico"

"Yes"

"Can you 100% guarantee he won't betray us?"

"Yes"

"Alright then I have a lot on my head right now and I definitely can't deal with this, so I'm going to trust you two dunderheads and I'm gonna have a talk with Mr. Di Angelo here" Annabeth sighed

"Annabe-" Percy started

"Yes Percy I will go easy on him, don't worry" Annabeth assured him, giving him a small smile, Oho completing each others sentences now are they, Piper thought making a mental note to tease Annabeth about it later, "Yeah ok, we'll leave now" said Piper, "Good luck kid" she whispered to Nico as they walked out.

Piper was jerked back to reality when Beck yelled for silence, Beck wasn't one to raise his voice but when he did everyone listened, sure enough silence quickly fell, Leo shot Beck and appreciative nod and continued "As I was saying, it potentially could blow up the Bunker there's a 1% chance I'm not going to lie, but hear me out, as all of you know we tried contacting the Romans, and it went wrong, to say the least".

Piper winced at that, it happened when they had decided to contact the Romans, they wanted to contact them at the earliest possible time so they rushed into it without taking proper precaution and the scroll blew up, blackening the council room and singeing Jason's eyebrows which was honestly pretty funny, even though in the next supply run Piper was the one who had to rob Walmart and lug two fire extinguishers to the Bunker.

"So, after that me and Beck were going through the scrolls, when I found a scroll to build a communication scroll, most of it is pretty simple stuff that we already have, but there are two things that we don't have, and both of them are in the Underworld, so if there is any way to get to them, now is the time since we have our friendly neighborhood Son of Hades to help us out" Leo finished.

Piper notices Percy, Jason and Annabeth exchange looks as if they knew that this was coming, maybe Piper thinks as they all know the prophecy they know the Quest would be to the Underworld.

While Piper is ruminating, everybody's attention shifted to Nico who was sitting beside Percy, Piper is baffled, no way in hell will Annabeth sanction this, a Quest to the Underworld was ridiculous, getting comms back up with Romans was a priority but a Quest to the Underworld was a death warrant.

Nico looks flushed, he unsteadily gets up on his feet and says, "I don't know any way to get to the Underworld, but my sister who's dead now" Leo mouths to Percy "Did you know that" Percy nods his head sorrowfully, "She told me" Nico continues "There was a place in the West Coast, where if I was ever in serious trouble or in need of help I should go and say some spell, which I have committed to memory in my mind, but I won't say it now as it's a onetime use spell". Piper sees Percy sidle up to Annabeth

"It's time" says Percy standing up "The first prophecy will be revealed tomorrow", Jason nods his head and Annabeth is deep in thinking.

She takes a breath, closing her eyes for a moment as she gathers her thoughts. Almost simultaneously, most of the circle leans forward slightly in anticipation, even Leo, Percy who knows what she's going to say. Even the fire at the centre of them goes quiet, flickering softly and sparking different colors. Annabeth just has that way about her - she really knows how to work a crowd, even if she doesn't mean to, and she gives off the impression that she's always in control, that she knows what she's doing, which, in a group as diverse as theirs, is rare.

Even in the times when technically Thalia had been their head, Annabeth had been the one most people turned to if they wanted to really know what was up, because she never minced her words, even in those times of conflict. It's her straightforwardness and simple, strong honesty that works as effectively as charmspeak in matters of riling people up or calming them down, that draw people in, and although there might be a few warriors on her level in camp, nobody can boast of being as influential.

"So," she says. Her voice is lower than normal, so everyone shifts towards her almost unconsciously "I assume everyone is familiar with our theory, after the Prophecy failed us. About possibly there being another Great Prophecy that would signal our comeback." She looks around at them all, grey eyes grim. "We were wrong."

Holding a placating hand in Jason's direction – as he seems on the border of interrupting – Annabeth nods at Percy, who clears his throat and then explains quickly about Lupa and the Prophecy she'd told him.

"A half-blood of the eldest gods," he says in Ancient Greek, and his voice sounds deep and impressive, the way his tongue rolls over the words. Annabeth, who probably hadn't been expecting that, blinks in surprise, but permits him to continue with a little gesture of her hand.

"Shall come of age against all odds," Percy says. "And see the world in endless sleep, the hero's soul, cursed blade shall reap – a single choice shall end his days, Olympus to preserve or raze." He stops.

"So you all heard the difference," Annabeth says. "It's a minor one, one most likely interpreted wrong long ago and then taken to be the law, sometime during all these years since the fall of the Oracle. After all, in Ancient Greece, the average coming of age for young people was sixteen. Here in the modern world, though, it's eighteen, when you technically become an adult" Annabeth pauses for effect she is an orator after all.

"Recently as you all know there was a Quest which was confidential and a lot of you weren't privy to the details, now you will be we had gone questing for the Sibylline books, the Roman sources of the prophecy" that draws several gasps as real prophecies hadn't been issued in ages "We found them and we now have five prophecies to deal with, each one will be revealed at the appropriate time, but the time has come to reveal the first one" everyone is literally on their toes, Piper is feeling quite feverish and her heart is throbbing, Annabeth motions to Jason to finally reveal it.

JASON

"Okay here goes nothing" says Jason as he stands up, everybody is looking at him with trepidation, the tension is so thick that even Riptide couldn't cut it, Jason literally feels small sparks flying of his body and then finally he recites the prophecy the first of five to come. Jason takes a huge breath and starts.

Greeks and Romans combined prevail
Five must travel west to open the gate
Hades's fury must one withstand
The key to endless death to awaken
One of the Five must be forsaken

There's complete silence for about 10 seconds and then all hell breaks loose, everybody's pushing forward their own theories the younger campers are just going crazy, the older campers are trying to calm everyone down but to no avail, the veterans were talking quietly in hushed tones and Jason was hoping to get their input later but right now his head felt like bursting with all the research he was doing and the stress he was under he finally broke.

"SHUT UP" he roared, his body crackling with electricity a little bit, all conversations ceased immediately, Piper was looking at him with something akin to approval.

"Ok, now that everyone has… Shut up" said Jason, "I'll let Percy and Annabeth take the lead on this one", he sits down feeling rather ashamed because his feelings have flared up (which usually happens when Piper is around).

Percy starts them off, "Well the first two lines are pretty clear, Greeks that's us and the Romans who are somewhere in the Bay area, we combine to prevail, that is to say make an alliance or fight alongside each other against Kronos in the 2nd big war, the second line says five must travel west to open the gate, the gate which by doing extensive research by studying musty old scrolls, may be the door of Orpheus the gateway to the Underworld, Annabeth?" He motions for the daughter of Athena to continue, she does.

"The third line is withstanding Hades's fury which could be any of the five members of the Quest, the second last line isn't quite figured out yet because there are no references new or old in the scrolls indicating any spell or weapon capable of such power, and the last line probably means that one of the Questors will be left behind or will… die" Annabeth finishes.

Jason feels his gut spasm at the very thought, Piper will not go on this quest is the only thought that runs through his mind.

"Let's not jump to conclusions yet" said Silena glaring at Annabeth for divulging this fact, "Silena I'm sorry but we've mapped out every single possibility over the last few months and all of these are cold hard facts" Annabeth says resolutely.

After that some questions were answered and the next War Council date was set, people dispersed in groups of 2s and 3s, muttering and throwing glances at Jason and Percy, some people stayed back to talk to Annabeth.

Jason just walks away he hears someone call his name but ignores them he goes straight to his sector and jumps on his bed, immediately drifting into the realm of Morpheus.

PERCY

Percy's been lonely all day, Jason is with some other people who go to the Hephaestus sector where the Hephaestus guys have set up a projector and screen and people like Jason, who was in Camp Jupiter his whole life and had no knowledge of outside technology, movies and tv shows, they just play some new movies and just for fun some people call it Movie Day, so Jason as busy there, Annabeth was studying some dusty old Automaton scroll, Piper was out on a supply run with Beck and Silena, so cureently Percy was trying to find Grover.

He finds Grover sitting in the shade of a tree, curling a vine around his fingers, and he looks strangely lost in thought, so Percy's about to move on when Grover looks up and spots him. He smiles and beckons him over.

Percy settles down next to him. It's a few hours post lunch and the farmlands are empty, freshly watered. Percy closes his eyes and breathes in the smell of the plants and the wetness of the tilled soil, and for a minute imagines he's still on the run, hiding in some forest somewhere, all alone.

Grover laughs lightly as though he's read his mind – it takes Percy a second for him to realize that the satyr had probably done just that. "Do you miss it?" he asks gently. "Being on the run?" He gestures around him. "It must be quite the change."

Percy blinks, startled and feeling somehow called out, though he's not entirely sure why. It's just that nobody's really commented on his sudden – and pretty drastic – shift in lifestyles until now (other than Annabeth, of course).

He thinks about it. It's true that he'd had control over his own schedule when he'd been on his own – he doesn't ever think he'll get used to Annabeth shaking him awake at some ungodly hour two nights a week for patrol – but Percy's only now comprehending fully just how isolated from everything he'd been before. Ever since leaving New Rome - where, despite being hailed as a hero, he'd never really fit in –

Being a part of the Bunker – of something larger than himself, is a welcome and refreshing change. And even though there's a lot of dirty work to do, and sometimes tempers run high, Percy can tell everyone in the Bunker is genuinely fond of each other. Bunker Nine seems more like a large family than a regiment of an army, and Percy's glad to have experienced the feeling at least once.

"I like it," he says honestly, which might be the biggest understatement ever, but Grover nods like he understands.

"You fit in," he says seriously. "I don't know if you'll believe me, but I really do think you belong here."

Percy bobs his head in response. "It's nothing like New Rome." The Romans had been much more of a military force than anything, even though he practically spent all his life their becoming Pilus and all that he never really felt he fit in, they were far too serious.

He respects them, though – their way of doing things is different, but it works for them. Reyna in particular had been a capable leader, the kind who wasn't ever above asking for help from more-experienced demigods and legacies. She reminds him, oddly enough, of Annabeth, even though they couldn't be further apart in appearance – there's just something similarly sharp and steely about the two girls.

He wonders how Reyna's doing now.

Thinking about New Rome makes him remember, inevitably, the battles he'd fought there, which, by extension, leads him right to thoughts of Frank and Hazel. He misses them like hell, misses when it had just been the three of them, stealing shit and camping out in the woods afterwards, when times had been simpler.

"Tell me about Pan," he says, mostly to pull his mind from the dark spiral it is heading down, but also because he's pretty sure the god is all Grover's been thinking about since the new prophecies have come.

Grover hums and the flowers growing around him bloom. Percy watches, transfixed, as a blossom nearly commits suicide trying to stretch its petals closer to Grover's hooves.

"Pan was – or is – the God of the Wild," Grover says, reverent. "His mission was to protect wildlife in any and all forms – satyrs all over the world live every day trying to uphold his ideals." He pauses to detangle a particularly daring vine snaking up his arm. "We do everything we can – planting trees, strengthening their roots, we might not make a huge difference, but a little goes a long way in the web of nature. One sapling planted means more nature magic for us to tap into. In the times before the war, we used the trees to communicate – the dryads were good as passing messages under the monsters' radar."

"What happened?" Percy asks curiously, because he remembers seeing far more nature spirits during his travels with Lupa – chlorophyll-skinned dryads who would vanish into the trees as he blundered his way past, naiads who would treat Percy's wounds with a gentle, healing touch.

"The Titans happened," Grover gets out through gritted teeth, and Percy stares; he's never seen the satyr angry before. Grover seems very much a peaceful spirit, more of a moderator than a fighter: on more than one occasion he's broken up a fight, and he seems to be a constant calming presence for Annabeth, who, Percy has noticed, is prone to occasional moments of diving too deep into her own head.

"After the War, or during – the time is a little weird, we're not sure when it started happening for sure – the Titans had pretty much every tree infected. We're not sure how they did it: my best bet is my best bet is they took the help of Gaea, their mother…maybe she spread the sickness through the earth itself – so although the physical forms of nature remain, the trees, the rivers – their magic has been corrupted. Haven't you noticed?"

"I think somebody told me this before but to be honest, I forgot what will all this shit going on" He replied, pointing his arm in a random direction hoping Grover would understand feeling like and absolute douche.

But thinking about it, he has, as a matter of fact not seen a naiad in years, and - "The water hasn't been healing me the way it used to." It still responds to his will, of course, but Grover's right – the little mountain streams Percy's always used feel less welcoming, almost as though they've been tainted somehow.

"We figured it out after the battle." Grover's head hangs. "Dryads started growing weaker, before disappearing entirely into their trees – no amount of calling would bring them out. It was like they were trapped in there." He touches a wild dandelion gingerly. "I had…a girlfriend. Juniper. Her tree is in New York."

"Oh, shit," Percy says, and then he winces at how insensitive he sounds, he is on a roll today.

"I haven't seen her in two years," Grover says, sniffling and rubbing at his eyes. "I don't even know if she's alive – I haven't felt the presence of a dryad since the War."

"I'm…so sorry," Percy says stupidly, at a loss for what to say. Grover shrugs.

"There are a bunch of satyrs left – a couple in each Bunker," he says. "They're all young, eager – but there's not much to do when nature's aura is so weak. No amount of our healing magic seems to work to get the nature spirits back." He purses his lips. "If Pan were really alive…we could finally have a purpose again."

Percy places a hand on Grover's knee. "You'll find him."

"I really hope I do," Grover admits. "I want to bring nature's lifeforce back – and there's still so much I want to know, you know?, maybe I could ask Annabeth and she could give me a small prophecy or maybe a clue where Pan is, if she does I'll go on the search again." His eyes are alight with the excitement of the unknown, and his face is so full of innocent hope and purity that Percy finds himself reflecting the emotion.

"I'll miss you," Percy says truthfully. "I mean – you might be gone for months, right?, If Annabeth sanctions this stuff"

"Probably," Grover replies. He turns to face Percy. "Actually, I had an idea about that. A way for us to talk, transfer important information when I'm gone or you're gone, basically if we're in different locations. It's called an empathy link."

"Sounds…" Percy can't find the word, so he settles for, "interesting."

Grover snorts. "Satyrs can form a link between themselves and another person if they wish – it's a foolproof method of communication."

"That's useful," Percy says. "Why haven't all you satyrs done it?"

"Because it's a little risky," Grover admits. "Do it wrong and you might just subject yourself and your linked partner to horrible, horrible headaches. Or – um. Brain damage. Maybe."

"Ah." Percy swallows. "So you've done it before, then?"

"Nope," Grover says brightly.

Percy forces himself to stay calm. "Grover…"

"I'm fairly confident, though!" Grover assures him.

Percy takes a deep breath. "So…it's like mind-reading?"

"Kinda," he answers. "More like we can talk telepathically. And, since I'm a satyr, I will probably feel what you're feeling when the link is open – and you might experience mine."

"What If I die?" Percy asks bluntly.

"I'll probably go into a coma or something," Grover says casually, and Percy chokes. "But don't worry," he is quick to reassure him. "The key is cutting off the link in time. Otherwise it's perfectly safe. I'll just be able to talk to you in your mind." Percy must look stricken at this – isn't having Grover sense his emotions enough, does he really have to get into his head? – but Grover laughs.

His smile turns wicked. "Just make sure you're not thinking anything dirty and we should be good."

"What?" Percy asks, mortified. "What?"

"You can close the link if that happens," Grover grins.

"You are horrible," Percy declares, trying not to smile when Grover bursts into laughter. "You are the worst and I hate you."

"You'll do it, then?"

He shrugs. "I'm in. But why me? Wouldn't you be better off linking with…Annabeth?"

Grover cocks his head slightly at him, his eyes so open and warm that it makes Percy flush.

"Annabeth has enough going on in her head without me screaming shit at her," he says bluntly. "And besides…I dunno. I feel a kind of bond with you, I guess. I like you, Percy. I trust you. I think you're going to be a great hero one day."

Percy knows he's gone red all the way to his hairline. "Grover…I-"

"Oh my god, don't cry," Grover says quickly, aghast, and Percy wipes the tears immediately, embarrassed, but Grover's gaze says he understands just how much it means to Percy to be accepted and trusted again, and how much it matters that Grover's said it out loud.

"So do we do this now?" Percy says, crossing his legs beneath him. "Do I have to meditate or something?"

"I'll open it when I'm gone," Grover responds. "There's no use in opening the link now – I'll just get an insight into your dirty dreams."

"I hate you. I'm leaving." Percy stands and makes for the tunnel entrance. "Go find another link-ee."

"Thanks, Percy," Grover calls, waving.

Percy ends up taking a wrong turn on his way back to the Bunker – he's still getting used to all the twists and turns and side-passages of the Labyrinth. Luckily for him, though, he bumps into Jason on his way back from the bathroom, who soon takes pity on Percy's utter incompetence at navigating the tunnels. He looks bored enough to suggest making a detour to – wherever, honestly, leading Percy to a narrower path that soon veers dangerously upward.

Percy is embarrassingly close to gasping. "Where are we going?"

"A special place," Jason says quietly. He tries to smile, but he seems lost in his head, eyes unfocused.

The passage opens up to –

"Wow," he gasps.

It's the mountaintop. Kind of. Maybe. It doesn't quite look high enough – the height they're at is only slightly above the treetops – but it's still beautiful. Reminds Percy of the all the little alcoves he's hidden in over the years - including the one he, Grover, and Annabeth had taken shelter in in the Tualatin Mountains - all rocky terrain and vast expanse of sky.

It's eveningtime, and the sun is setting, turning the sky all kind of shades of blues and oranges and magentas. Percy thinks, if he were a painter, he would surely be scrambling to capture the magnificence of it all.

He breathes in the cold breeze, and it smells faintly of spring.

Percy and Jason lean against the still-warm rocks and gaze upward. At least, Percy gazes upward, trying to spot the first stars, while Jason closes his eyes, his mouth pulling into a tiny frown.

The son of Jupiter's been looking worried these days, and he's shit at hiding it, too. Percy's seen him agitated before, and usually it makes for pretty adequate entertainment, because watching Jason attempt to be rude is hilarious, but not this time. He looks exhausted.

Percy supposes it comes with the trade. Jason, being a month older than him, now has to bear the burden of the Prophecy.

Percy isn't sure what to feel about it, himself. On the one hand, with Jason around, that means Percy's free from the responsibility, but he's not entirely sure how it works. There's been a weird thought floating around his head, that maybe it's really him who's the Hero after all, but Percy's not sure how Jason will fit into that particular narrative, and he doesn't want to think about it, because he genuinely likes Jason. Feels a sense of companionship and brotherhood and – and shared baggage, cheesy as it might sound.

"You okay?" Percy finally asks into the silence, and a sideways glance at Jason reveals his eyes open again, dim and troubled, and Percy wants to help, but he doesn't know how.

"Fine." Jason sighs. "I guess."

The wind slows down almost imperceptibly – Jason must be manipulating it, because he plucks a leaf from the air and worries it between his fingers.

"This fucking sucks," he confesses quietly, and the look on his face scares Percy, because for a split second there, he looks like a man with nothing left to lose. Sparks dance on the tips of his fingers and the leaf he'd been holding so delicately turns to ash. He scowls.

Percy isn't sure what Jason means – the Prophecy or the Quest or just everything in general – but he understands - empathizes, even. It's all well and good and easy for everyone else to just – assume they're the Hero, or whatever, and run with it, but it's a whole different feeling when there's a real chance it really might be you. From there – well, you can choose to ignore the fact that the very existence of everything and everyone you love rests on your shoulders. Or you can deal with the stress by convincing yourself of your skill and bravery, or you can run.

Percy's sick of running. He's sick of running and he's sick of losing and more than anything he wants a home, something to come back to, something to hold onto.

"I feel you man, your sister died doing the same thing, it's natural that you would feel the burden" Percy says trying to relate with Jason though maybe bringing up Jason's dead sister wasn't such a great idea.

Jason doesn't reply, Is something up?" Percy asks quietly. "Are you having bad dreams or something about the Quest?"

Jason keeps his eyes on the horizon when he answers. "Not exactly." He doesn't elaborate, and Percy doesn't feel like pushing it. He just bumps him lightly in the shoulder.

"Whatever it is, it'll be okay," he promises. "You're Jason, son of Jupiter extraordinaire. If anyone's guaranteed to make it out of this alive, it's you."

"What you think I'm worried about me? You dork you should be the one worried, you have to make the fricking decision to save the world" Jason says standing up, looking at him, bemusedly.

"Jason bro are you alright, you are the one, the guys who is the proph child" Percy says utterly confused, "No Jackson, you are" replies Jason looking at him weirdly.

"Don't give me that look, I'm not crazy it's you Jason"

"No I'm pretty sure you are the guy who's supposed to turn 18 before me, hence the child of the prophecy"

"Dude I'm born on August 18th" says Percy, trying to explain to him "and you are born on July 15th".

Jason sucks in a breath and is suddenly looking much more understanding, Percy feels something settle in his stomach.

"Perce I'm not sure how to explain this but I'm born on September 15th, I'm younger than you by a month, which means you are the child of the prophecy" Percy reels from the shock.

He was… what…. No way

"I'm gonna take a breather, just leave me alone for a few minutes" says Percy in sudden need of water as his throat is parched.

Jason looks at him with concern but still leaves, Percy hears the sound of Jason's shoes fading way, and the moments he's far away Percy collapses on the ground his vision shaking.

Fuck he thinks, it all made sense how Jason looked stressed emotionally not mentally, Percy was shocked all this time he assumed he was safe, selfishly so.

He is the child of the prophecy, the person who's most likely fated to die, 1 ½ year later he will be the one to decide the world's fate, destroying it or saving it.

Sorry for the long wait, but I had some crazy stuff going on, Chelsea won the Champion League, to all football fans out there.

DISCORD SERVER – : / / . g g / 8

JOIN THE SERVER, just remove all the spaces, read the server rules if you join it.

This week's shoutout goes to – The Owl and the Wolf by NEIWIS, it's a martial arts AU of pjo characters all mortal.

And finally holy shit, we are at 74 reviews at the time of this writing, thank you to all of you guys that reviewed.

Adressing Fallen King – Will take some time off to develop a new plot, so I can make the story better written and more exciting for you guys.

Updated on – 9th June 9, 2021

Chapter Length – 6166 words

New Chapter out soon

Don't forget to join the server

Peace,
NiHarOP