Annabeth Chase was brutally knocked out of her dreams. Someone was shouting her name and bashing on her door. Her hand groped around for her pillow, and she buried her head under it. Maybe if she ignored them they'd go away? A particularly loud smash of palm on wood proved it unlikely.


"What!?" She snapped grumpily. Her alarm clock showed it was barely past half four in the morning. It was the middle of winter, and nobody in their right mind would be up at this time. But clearly someone wasn't in their right mind, as her cabin door began creaking under the strain of so much pounding.

"It's a surprise!"

Annabeth could've spat fire, she was so furious. From her position with her head under her pillow, she couldn't even tell who it was that was risking their life to play a prank. She would flay the culprit alive when she caught them.

Realising the person was too persistent to leave her alone even if she ignored them until midday, Annabeth began muttering curses. Tossing her pillow aside, the blonde teenager snatched up a woolly orange dressing gown, and stomped over to the door. She wrenched it open, saying:

"If this is some idea of a jo... Oh!"

Her mouth lost the ability to function as it dropped open. She stared at the boy at the door in surprise.

"Hey Annabeth." Percy Jackson grinned, dressed in ski clothes with a large rucksack over his shoulder.

"What... How did you...? Why are you here? You're supposed to be with Sally and Paul in New York!" She spluttered. Her anger vanished instantly.

Percy Jackson. Star demigod of Camp Half-Blood, only current resident of the camp who was a son of the Big Three, hero, and prize idiot, was standing outside her cabin in the early hours of Christmas Eve morning.