Everyone in the crowd wondered at the two glowing symbols above Naruto's head. The power behind those symbols was obvious to anyone who had even somewhat basic chakra control. Floating the right of Naruto's head was a pair of silver antlers while floating to his left was what looked like three different phases of the moon merged together. For the next twelve seconds the symbols floated in the air before they suddenly vanished.
Voices started to fill the exposition grounds as people asked each other what this meant. Hiruzen cut that off by using a jutsu to enhance the volume of his voice calling out. "Silence everyone. I know we just had an unusual occurrence. Once the officiating chunin has finished up this round I will explain what we just witnessed. Mizuki if you would please announce the winner of this grade's mounted archery test?"
The previously named chunin nodded his head and quickly collected his wits. Mizuki called out, "The winner of the mounted archery contest is Naruto Uzumaki. Contestants seal your bows away." Mizuki turned his attention to the Hokage just like everyone else in the stand had.
Hiruzen took out his pipe, filled it, lit it, and put it to his mouth. He took a puff of smoke to finish thinking about what he would say before he spoke. Hiruzen then let out a cloud of smoke before he started to explain what everyone had seen.
"All of you are aware that our beloved Yondaime and his wife have been entered into the service of an unknown kami from very distant lands. We only have the Namikaze Armory, which has already saved several hundred shinobi lives, thanks to the couple's love for our village. Now, what is not popularly known is that the Yondaime and his wife have also sent some books on the land of the kami they now serve to their living kin. The books are mainly about the customs of the land and its history hundreds and thousands of years ago."
"I have been honored with the privilege of reading those books so I know what just happened. Those symbols were sent by the kami that the Yondaime and his wife serve. It is a sign that the kami now considers itself to be Naruto Uzumaki's patron. The kami is showing its favor towards Naruto and stating that it expects great things from Naruto in the future like his parents did in the past. There are some more details for Naruto to be aware of now that a kami has declared itself his patron given the lands this kami comes from."
"These are a private matter which I must discuss with Naruto immediately. I apologize to all contestants at this exposition that I will not be able to see your future contests. It has been a joy to see your efforts displayed here today and it brings joy to my heart that Konoha has so many promising shinobi in its future. However, the kami in question has been extremely generous to all of us even though we do not pay it homage and we are so distant from its lands. It would be a great shame on all of us if we were to insult this kami by not honoring its traditional customs when asked of us. Tie up your donkey Naruto and I will meet you there."
Naruto did as instructed and quickly led his donkey to a waiting post. Hiruzen was at his side by the time he finished tying up the donkey. Naruto looked up at the old leader and asked, "What next gramps?"
Hiruzen chuckled and said, "We will be making a quick detour to the market and then to the Uzumaki Shrine." The duo headed to the market and the kage bunshin Hiruzen created earlier dispersed by the time they reached the market. Arashi had been informed that Hiruzen would handle telling Naruto everything and that he could stay to support Karin in her competitions. Hiruzen found a livestock seller and bought a chicken from the man. Then the duo headed for the Uzumaki Shrine with the chicken under a stasis seal.
Once at the shrine Hiruzen spoke to Naruto. "Get some kindling and place it on the altar to the kami your parents serve while I double check a few things." Hiruzen grabbed the book on Greco-Roman mythology and looked up the symbols that had been seen above Naruto. His eyes widened slightly when he saw the kami those symbols represented. With a quiet mutter Hiruzen said, "I wasn't expect that one."
Personally, Hiruzen had been expected the kami in question to be Hecate or Enyo. The occasional conversations he had with the avatars over the years suggested that the kami was more comfortable appearing as Kushina. Hiruzen took this to mean that the kami was normally female. Those particular kami were the primary candidates in the Hokage's mind as their domains fit Minato and Kushina very well. Jutsus seemed to be equivalent to magic while both of them exceled at combat. Arashi favored Hephaestus or Athena in the private bet as the couple's originating kami. His reasoning being how Kushina and Minato were craftsmen coming up with jutsus and the connection to strategic war. Jiraiya was rooting for the couple's kami to be one of the big kami like Zeus or Poseidon.
Naruto finished putting the kindling on the altar and walked up to Hiruzen. "That is done Gramps. What do we do next?"
Hiruzen replied. "First Naruto I need to explain some things to you. The story about your parents being in the service of a foreign kami is false. They are actually the avatars of the kami. What happened at the academy exposition was that kami officially claiming you as their child under the divine laws of their realm. Apparently this group of kami known as the Olympians likes to reserve this ritual for when their halfblood children have achieved something of note. According to your father this is so that their halfblood children know that their divine parents are in fact watching them."
Naruto's entire world was flipped upside down and shaken for all it was worth. His parents were kami? They were parts of the same kami? How did that even work? What did that make him? However, he latched on to one particular thing Hiruzen said, "According to dad? Gramps, did my father tell you this before he died or would that be disappeared?"
This was the part that none of the trio had been looking forward to for years. Hiruzen sighed and said, "He did not Naruto. Your parents were not even aware that they were avatars of a kami until after their deaths. It might be best to think of them like divine kage bunshins for the kami. When they died as Minato and Kushina they rejoined the kami. Since then, the kami has occasionally recreated those avatars to briefly visit Konoha."
"Mom and dad have been to Konoha since I was born?" Naruto's voice gained a fragile quality. Emotionally he was near his breaking point. "Why didn't they ever visit me? Do they not love me?"
Hiruzen placed his hand firmly on Naruto's shoulders as he kneeled down to look the boy in the eye. "Your parents love you greatly Naruto. Never doubt that for a second. Why do you think that so many gifts have appeared since your birth like your future armor or the pegsai and unicorns? What about all these books collected here about a separate world and a different civilization? Your parents oversee lands farther away than we previously imagined were possible. These things were given to you because your parents love you and want you to have your full inheritance."
"They may be avatars of an Olympian, but they cannot do as they please. Those kami like our native ones are bound by a set of rules to maintain order in the land. One of the rules the Olympians have is that they cannot raise their halfblood children which you are as the child of a kami's avatar. Things would have been different had your parents mortal selves not been slain, but that is not the world we live in. Both of your parents have repeatedly written you letters that they have delivered to Arashi to keep until you were able to be claimed. Arashi has told me that their first question when either of your parents visits him is how you are doing."
"If they could visit you they would Naruto. However, your parents have to be very careful because you are a special case among the Olympians' halfbloods. You know from your studies that in the Western culture the Olympians have two different names and apparently forms. The original they got from the Greeks and a second one they got from the Romans. The children of both forms have apparently fought each other many times causing much turmoil for the Olympians. According to your parents the Olympians' only solution to the problem was to cast a powerful jutsu over both groups making them forget that the other existed and taking strict measures to insure that both sides did not encounter each other again."
"The problem Naruto is that you break those measures. Minato was the avatar of the kami's Roman form while Kushina was the avatar of the kami's Greek form. You are both a Greek and a Roman halfblood making you a danger to the Olympians' plan on keeping the two groups separated. Kushina has even mentioned to possibility of some Olympians trying to kill you like Iwa would try if the cost wasn't too high. Your parents are being strict with following all the rules regarding Olympians interacting with halfbloods so that none of their fellow kami can use those rules against you."
Naruto closed his eyes and contemplated what Hiruzen had told him for a minute. His parents did love him despite what he feared for a moment. They had left him letters with Uncle Arashi and they were looking out over him. How could they know when he won the archery competition unless they were keeping an eye on him? If they had to stay away for his protection he would accept that fact.
The young halfblood firmed up his resolve and spoke. "I have two question Gramps. Is the chicken supposed to be a sacrifice to my parents? Also, what kami are my parents' avatars of?"
Hirzuen nodded his head and replied, "That is correct Naruto. The kami revealing her identity seems to be a worthy moment for you to offer thanksgiving. As to the kami in question, your mother is the avatar of Artemis while your father is the avatar of her Roman persona Diana."
Artemis looked at the trio of halfbloods that had stumbled across her hunt's camp with mild interest. It had been a while since some halfbloods genuinely stumbled upon camp. Although, most of her attention was on making sure that everyone on Olympus was so drunk so that they didn't notice her or Diana claiming Naruto.
Gods could tell when a claiming happened, but they could only tell who the parent doing to claiming was if they were on Olympus during the claiming. Having a Greek and a Roman god claim a child at the same time was very rare, but it had happened several times before. There were just so many different gods and both camps held weekly events that were often used by the Gods as a basis for claiming.
Both Artemis and Diana had wanted to claim Naruto for years now. Their lives as Kushina and Minato were completely unexpected, but neither personality of the goddess would give any of it up. Living as mortals in a different realm had been more eye opening and wonderful than anything they had ever expected. It had been the most massive change in Artemis's life since the start of the Romans from the Greek/Trojan schism.
However, her claiming a child would not have been smooth for divine politics even under the best of times. These were certainly not the best of times given the two Great Prophecies in play. Once the fact that she and Diana were Naruto's parents came out then not even FUBAR could accurately describe the incoming mess. There was also the fact that a god had to claim their child if they did something that undeniably linked them to a particular god and there were multiple witnesses of the act who were aware of the supernatural. Hera got that law passed millennia ago when Zeus tried to hide some of his children from her.
So Artemis and Diana used their newly acquired abilities to work together along with their shinobi skills to head this problem off. They drugged everyone on Olympus so that they were so out of it that Diana was literally able to castrate Priapus with a rusty spoon and no one noticed. By timing this with the Konoha Ninja Academy's Exhibition they were able to safely claim Naruto without anyone knowing it. This required most of Artemis and Diana's attention so they weren't able to secure the Hunter's Camp as well as they typically did.
The odds of someone stumbling across the Hunter's camp during this brief window were so small Artemis was sure the Fates had a hand in it. Now she had to deal with a young teenage son of Hermes, a very young daughter of Athena, and her newest halfblood half-sibling who was the current headache of Olympus. Artemis peered into the trio's minds while Zoe talked to them. Her time as a shinobi gave Artemis a better understanding of mortal reactions allowing her to predict how a mortal or halfblood will react instead of just depending on reading their minds. Said understanding was far more enhanced than Kushina or Minato could hope to have given her access to far more information about people than mortals could have.
Artemis could see that the conversation was heading in a direction that would just cause problems. She held her hand up to cut off Zoe and spoke. "I know that things seem unfair to you three and that you three have faced challenges that by the mortal standards of this time should not be faced by people so young. I will say that all of you have been provided the tools needed to have a solid chance to survive and thrive in this world. Sadly, history has shown that the results of gods or goddesses excessively interacting with their children have terrible results for everyone involved. Our current system is not a particularly good one. It simply is the least terrible option available to everyone."
"Now let us focus on more important matters at hand. First off Luke Castellan, a male entering the Hunter's Camp without my permission is a serious offense even if it is done unknowingly and accidentally. I officially absolve you of this sin given your efforts in the protection of Thalia and Annabeth. The protection of maidens is under my domain so by protecting your friends you have been helping me and have my thanks."
Artemis adjusted her gaze to look that the female duo of the demigod trio. "Thalia Grace and Annabeth Chase, the two of you currently are under my domain and thus my protection. However, my aid will have to be of a limited natured. The same pacts that prevent the gods from using their full power to harass halfbloods they don't like also limits gods from giving their full aid to those halfbloods they wish to help. Do you understand this?"
Annabeth just nodded her head while Thalia frowned as she thought about what Artemis had told them. Thalia didn't have a high opinion of the hunters and found their attitude towards Luke to be offensive. She wasn't too thrilled about Artemis and her somewhat standoffish approach. However, Thalia was happy that Artemis was at least giving an explanation and recognized that things weren't that great. Thalia frowned and said, "I don't like it."
Zoe was surprised when Artemis smirked and replied, "That would make two of us. But my question was if you understand what I told you Thalia. You should always remember to answer the question asked of you by a god because there are many gods and goddesses who will punish you for disrespecting the gods as they defend their actions. All three of you should keep this in mind in the future because an honest answer protects a mortal under council rulings in recent centuries. I would prefer it if none of you entered my uncle's dominion for many years to come. Now again Thalia, do you understand what I've told you?"
For a second, Thalia wondered if this is what having a big sister was like. Technically Artemis was her older sister even if you weren't supposed to point that out to gods. Thalia nodded her head and said, "I understand."
Artemis nodded her head accepting Thalia's response. She then turned to several of her attendants and said, "Celyn I want you to retrieve an atlas of New York State and include Camp Halfblood's location on it. Phoebe, get some appropriate non-hunter clothes for the girls that are good for traveling and 80 dollars. Finally Naomi, I want you to fetch three water canteens, one small nectar canteen, and enough dried food to feed this trio for three days."
The goddess returned her attention to the demigods as the hunters left to complete their tasks. "The money should get you an appropriate set of traveling clothes Luke. We naturally do not have such clothes for men on hand. Camp Halfblood was established by the gods as a sanctuary and training ground for heroes like you. Once there no god or goddess that wishes you harm can touch you as long as you are within the Camp. I would like to offer you three more aid, but this is the most I am allowed to give."
Soon the hunters returned with the requested items which were promptly handed to the halfbloods. The trio then departed to make their way to Camp Halfblood. Artemis waited a moment after the trio left before turned to Zoe. "You were surprised by my actions Zoe?"
Zoe nervously looked at the door of the tent before turning to look at her goddess. "I don't understand milady. Why were you so friendly with that boy? Why didn't you offer those girls the protection of the Hunt?" This wasn't the first time over the past century that Artemis did something that surprised Zoe. Those times had been increasing over the past several decades and had increased dramatically over the previous decade.
Artemis arched an eyebrow and replied, "Since when did politeness become equivalent to being friendly Zoe? The boy likely will become troublesome for those girls in the future like you claimed because of his outlook. However, that is in the future. His actions at present have been respectable and for that I have given him what aid I can."
"As for girls, neither of them would be good for the hunt at the present time. Annabeth is so young that making her a hunter would detrimental to her health. In three years we might have the opportunity to have her join us. Thalia does not have the right mentality to join us at this time. Besides, she is potentially involved in the Great Prophecy and having her join might be seen by the Fates as an attempt to sidestep the prophecy. Such attempts never end well for anyone in the attempt."
There was a sudden rush of energy within the goddess and her nose picked up the delightful scent of a sacrificial offering. Artemis smiled as the offering and accompanying prayers washed away her nerves over the current situation. Naruto understood the situation and still loved her as his mother. Everything was right in the world.
Arashi watched as Karin brushed Narses's coat while Naruto preened Narses's wings. Since the pegasus belonged to the Uzumaki it was only right in Arashi's mind that duo take care of the animal. Besides, it would give them both the skills needed to work in any stable in the future. That would be a useful cover role in the future and it was one that was less suspected by anyone worried about a ninja attack.
Karin moved her stepstool again so that she could brush another section of Narses's coat. She turned to look at Naruto and said, "Do you think Narses's will stop growing so fast if we cut down on the oats we feed him every day?"
"No don't be so mean Karin. Narses is just having a growth spirt. We'll get ours soon enough and then we won't need the stools to groom and preen him. Besides, pegasi reach their full height in just the first couple years of life. If Narses stayed a convenient height for us right now then we wouldn't be able to ride him in the future."
That would have been a real bummer. All the other pegasi were under strict shinobi control and were limited to still developing Pegasi Corps. Practically every shinobi wanted to join the Pegasi Corps. Only about 2 percent of all applicants were accepted. The Unicorn Corps got the cream of those who couldn't make it into the Pegasi Corps. Well over 90 percent of all applicants were left with a note to try again later. Karin really didn't see the bottleneck in applicants to acceptance rate into the Pegasi Corps changing anytime soon. She didn't see any attempts for her to join the Pegasi Corps in the future succeeding given her average score at donkey riding. This made Narses her only option if she ever wanted to enjoy a quick pegasus ride in the future.
Not that Narses was a bad pegasus. Karin found him much easier to care for than any of the donkeys at the Academy. However, Narses had made it clear that he was Naruto's pegasus even if he would let her ride him.
The duo turned to Arashi once their chores were done and said, "All done Uncle Arashi. Who gets to ride Narses's first?"
Arashi chuckled and said, "You two know the drill." He fished a ryo coin out of his pocket and got it ready. "Karin, since you rode second last time you get to call the toss this time. So do you want heads or tails?"
Karin called out, "Heads Uncle Arashi." Both Uzumakis had their eyes glued to the ryo as it spun in the air and landed on the stable floor. Karin excitedly jumped into the air with her fist raised high. She cheerfully yelled out, "Called it! Heads I get to ride first."
Naruto pouted for a split second before he headed over to grab the saddle. He helped ready Narses for riding and then helped Karin onto Narses's back. Arashi opened the stable door so that Karin could calmly ride Narses out of the barn. Both Arashi and Naruto followed after Karin as she and Narses cleared the barn.
Arashi called out, "Remember the routine Karin. Have Narses trot the course once on his feet before you start to fly. You also need to keep the height limit in mind at all times." Arashi refused to let Naruto or Karin fly Narses higher than several meters. The limit was set so that if either one fell they would be seriously hurt, but they'd live from the fall. Narses was also still very young for a pegasus and Arashi didn't want to risk him falling to the ground from exhaustion.
"I remember Uncle Arashi. Besides, Narses won't let me down. Isn't that right boy?" Karin said as she led the pegasus to the start of the beginner rider course. Arashi was keeping his eye firmly on Karin ready to rush to her if the need arose. Neither of his children was going to get hurt as long as he could prevent it.
While Karin started the course, Naruto unsealed a binder and opened it. The binder contained copies of all the letters his parents had written to him starting with the ones written before he was born as most shinobi parents did. Ever since the claiming last week the binder had grown with all the letters Uncle Arashi had been saving for him. Some letters were short notes about how his parents loved him and wished they could raise him. Other letters contained tidbits of his parents' lives and recounting of divine shenanigans. Yet still others were lectures about some incident in Naruto's past where his mother or father would lay out what he did wrong and how he could have done better. Many of those types of letters were accompanied by a letter from the other parent double teaming him.
Naruto wouldn't trade even a single letter for all the gold in the Land of Fire. Here was concrete proof in clear Greek and Latin writing that his parents loved him and constantly watched over him. Naruto was even happy at the scolding letters since it proved his parents wanted the best out of him. Moreover, a new pair of letters had appeared on his nightstand when he woke up and Naruto was eager to read them.
Pop's letter was first by pure happenstance. She mentioned to Naruto how she and Artemis had planned things out so that they could safely claim him as they knew he would do well at the exhibition. Diana also mentioned how she used Priapus to make sure everyone on Olympus was completely out for the count. Seriously, the dick deserved it in Naruto's mind for what he tried to do to his great aunt.
There was the fact that his parents completed a task that had to be an S Rank mission in difficulty all because they trusted in his abilities and wanted to show the world that he was their son. If that wasn't an example of parental love by word and deed than what was an example? Pops also went on in her letter that she and Artemis had found an overlooked loophole in divine laws regarding divine/halfblood communications.
Olympus had rules on meeting in person, meeting through images, sending divine messengers, talking in dreams, and even sending portents. However, there were no rules on pen and paper writing so both Diana and Artemis could send as many letters to Naruto as they wished. Naruto could expect an increase in his letter volume now that Naruto knew about them and he was publicly claimed.
Diana did not include the reason why this oversight occurred in Olympian Law because of how embarrassing it was. Most gods and goddesses on Olympus were illiterate. Gods had perfect recall, were immortal, and could go where they want as long as it wasn't another god's domain. They had no need to write things do to preserve facts or to talk to others. Then there was the fact that the alphabet was imported into Greece by a demigod who had visited another civilization centuries after Olympus was founded. Who wanted to learn menial foreign skill found by a demigod? If it was truly something important then the gods of Olympus would have invented it themselves.
Artemis learned how to read and write back in Ancient Greece to put those uppity mortals who completely dehumanized women in their place. She also kept a complete collection of works written by ancient Greek women that modern historians would eagerly kill to read. The only other two deities that could read and write for sure as far as Artemis knew were Aphrodite and Ares. Athena wasn't on the short list of literate deities due to her pride in her memory and wisdom. Aphrodite learned to read due to her becoming enamored with the idea of love letters. Ares learned because Mars picked it up due to roman battle commanders writing plans down and Ares couldn't stand the thought of his Roman half having a skill that he didn't.
Somewhat ironically, Poseidon might actually know how to read and write. Artemis knew he knew how to read sea charts. She also knew that letter writing had been a big part of sailor culture among sailor who could read for centuries. Poseidon and Neptune were also known for indulging in all aspects of their domains. She just never felt the need to ask him that question.
Naruto would not have cared even if he knew the full truth about the writing loophole. All that mattered to him was that he had a direct connection to his parents. He finished Diana's letter just as Karin finished her course. Karin came to a stop next to Arashi and got off of Narses. Naruto used this time to close his binder and seal it away.
Karin grinned at Naruto as she spoke. "Okay Naruto. It's your turn on the course."
With a small smile Naruto replied, "Thank you Karin." Naruto quickly climbed onto Narses.
An unknown and yet somehow familiar feminine voice suddenly boomed in Naruto's head. "Six o'clock Naruto rise as fast as you can!" Naruto didn't stop to think. He just reacted as something in his very being knew that he had to listen to this voice. Arashi and Karin were both shocked as Naruto jerked on the reins urging Narses to ascend.
Arashi couldn't believe Naruto's actions for a second. The boy loved to have fun, but he also knew when he needed to behave. Naruto also knew why everyone insisted on being so careful with the rules regarding someone riding a pegasus. Why had he just shattered every rule regarding Narses?
Karin followed Naruto with her eyes and then pointed in shock at where he was flying. "Look Uncle Arashi. Something's forming in the sky!"
Arashi followed Karin's hand and saw a vortex of golden energy forming in the sky. Someone then tumbled out of the vortex and screamed at the top of their lungs. From the pitch of the voice and a rough guess at the person's size Arashi estimated the interloper was a ten to twelve year old girl. Arashi's heart leaped to his throat with fear as the girl fell. The height was too great she'd die if she hit the ground. Her only hope was divine intervention. Arashi's suddenly realized that Naruto was on an intercept course for the girl. Said intervention might already be happening.
Thalia Grace was having what might be the worst day in her entire eleven year old life. Losing her little brother had somehow gotten bumped down the list from number one. This was not an achievement she ever wanted to have. Things had been going decently since the trio's run in with Artemis and her hunters last week.
The supplies Artemis had gifted them with had really helped them out. Thalia also suspected that her divine big sister had been helping them out on the sly where she could. That book on trap making Luke had spotted and bought at the goodwill shop might have been coincidence. However, their traps always catching enough small animals for three kids to have three solid meals plus offerings to the gods every day? Both Luke and Thalia had made sure to give Artemis a portion of their meals in thanks.
A satyr name Grover had also found the trio a few days after their encounter with Artemis. He had been extremely helpful in teaching the trio more about the supernatural world. It was also extremely helpful to have someone who wasn't dyslexic around that could read the street signs. The trio of halfbloods could read the atlas just fine since it was in Ancient Greek. They just had trouble figuring out where they physically were in relation to the map.
Things had slowly been looking up for Thalia and her friends with today supposed to be the day they got to Camp Halfblood. However, it seemed that someone truly had it out for the group in general and her in particular. Over a dozen monsters had blocked the group's way to Camp Halfblood and they wouldn't let them sneak around them. Thalia and Luke ended up taking guard duty while Grover carried Annabeth so they could move faster.
It had been a simple plan of them just booking it for the camp while she and Luke protected everyone from incoming monster attacks. However, the fates could be a real pack of bitches as Luke ended up tripping on a root and breaking his ankle. Thalia had made the call then and there on that hill to buy her friends time to escape. Annabeth and Grover carried Luke away while she held off the monsters.
Thalia had been sure she was going to die on that hill. Just as she was on her last dregs of strength a lightning bolt appeared out of the clear sky and struck her. Was this her end? Thalia couldn't describe the next several seconds. She doubted that anyone had ever created words that would adequately describe it.
Then for a split second Thalia had a vision of something. It might have been an old man but what kind of old man has horns and three eyes? The next thing Thalia knew she was falling through the air and her fear of heights kicked into overdrive. No one would ever be able to get her to admit that she screamed like the proverbial scared little girl she completely did not feel like at that moment. Thalia closed her eyes praying for someone to save her.
A sudden thud caused Thalia to open her eyes in shock. She found herself looking into surprised blue eyes making her wonder what was happening. Thalia then became aware of the two arms wrapped around her back holding her steady. Next her eyes spotted parts of a horse and wings in her peripheral vision.
However, the most shocking thing for Thalia was the feel of her lips pressed against a stranger's. The adrenaline rush quickly left Thalia causing her to collapse from exhaustion. This left the duo lying on Narses' back with Naruto sandwiched between the horse and an unconscious Thalia. Naruto was somehow able to finagle the reins with one of his feet so that his pegasus landed on the ground.
Author's note: yes I am aware that in the books Thalia would be 12 at the time of her stand at halfblood hill. Her being a year younger was a deliberate choice on my part in order to make other characters ages line up better for the crossover. The reason for this will become more obvious as the story progresses.
On the writing issue I am drawing some features from the ancient Greek culture in this decision. Writing was imported into Greece from merchants doing business with Phoenicia centuries after when the Greeks believed their heroic age to have occurred. Immortal beings with perfect recall that can travel wherever they want at speeds fast even by today's standards lack two of the main driving reasons for people to learn reading and writing. Those reasons are the ability to preserve and pass along knowledge.
In the Percy Jackson books and those of Heroes of Olympus that I have read there has only been one example of a god writing something. That was Mars when he was asked to give a prophecy in the Son of Neptune. Meanwhile, Minerva in the Mark of Athena has trouble reading a subway map. Athena also doesn't have any scenes in the books as far as I recall with her reading a book or in a library. Her cabin for her kids has books and plenty of fanfiction has her temple as a library.