Camp Halfblood and the tale of Thomas

From Alexandros' Journal: Arrival

Hello, new journal! I am Alexandros Pachis, and I have just bought you. I will be writing in you to help praktice my English. You see, I have just arrived in New York, and I am very excited to start a new life living like an American! It is going to be very much fun. I will tell you a bit about myself, just so you know who it is who is writing in you.

I am from Greece. It is a beautiful country, and the people there are very friendly. I am the oldest of three brothers, and I have one baby sister too. Their names are Leon, who is 12, Jason, who is 8, and baby Melina, who is 5. I am 15. We all live with Mama, whose name is Elena. She is 32, but she doesn’t like to mention her age. I never met my father, he left when I was still a baby. Mama has had boyfriends, but none stayed very long after she got pregnant. Since I was the oldest, I have always had to be very responcible. It is hard to look after all my family, but I love them very much, so I do not mind very much.

We lived very happy in Greece for a long time. But after I turned 12, bad things started to happen. Strange creatures, like from the myths Mama would tell me, would attack me! It was very scary. When I told Mama, she told my my father was Herakles, the hero from the myths. I was very surprised! I was fat when I was young, so it did not seem very likely. But as I grew, I became taller and thinner and stronger! A lot stronger! Soon I could even fight some of the monsters, though I still had to run away a lot. Sometimes the monsters would attack my house and sometimes my family got hurt. That was always the worst.

It was six months ago when I first met Aiden online. He was very strange, at first, and he only spoke English, so it was hard to talk to him. Thankfully I was taking English in school, and so I could get most of what he was saying, and he was always very patient. He said that the monsters were attracted to me by my smell. I thought that was weird, but he seemed to know a lot about monsters, so I listened to him. He told me about he lived in America and there was a camp where all the other demigod children all lived together and trained to fight monsters. And he told me that he would even help me pay for the traveling there! It was very generous. But I couldn’t just leave my family, there was too much to do. I told Mama about the place and she thought it sounded very nice.

But then, the ekonomee fell apart. There were riots in the street and it was very dangerous. That was when Mama decided that we would move away, somewhere were it was safe. I talked some more to Aiden and he suggested that he could help my family move to America, and his father could help get citizenship very quickly for us. Mama agreed and Aiden told me he would get it done. But then he told me that it wasn’t safe for me to travel with Mama and my siblings, because if a monster attacked the plane it could be very dangerous. So Aiden came to Greece to come and get me before Mama left, so they could travel safe. I said goodbye and told them all I would send letters and Aiden promised to teach me how to use ‘Iris Messages’, which is a magic thing with rainbows?

The trip to the airport was very rough, there were three monsters on the way! Aiden was very helpful, he is a good shoot, and he used his Aphrodite powers to keep the monsters fokused on him while I punched them. One time he was almost eaten by a hydra but I hit it with my head and it disappeared. Aiden fell pretty far, but he was okay. When we finally made it, the trip was uneventful. We stopped in London airport, but we were only there for an hour so I didn’t get to see the city at all.

When we were flying over the atlantic, one of the passengers turned out to be an Empousa and tried to attack us, but I managed to beat her. After, Aiden used his powers to convince everyone on the plane that Empousa was a terrorist and I had saved them! The mist is pretty strong, so they believed him and I got a lot of thank yous, and the flight attendant even gave me her phone number! She told me to call if I needed somebody to show me around New York. What a friendly country! Too bad I don’t have a cell phone. Aiden tells me they attrakt monsters.

Anyways, after we landed Aiden showed me around the city a bit. It was amazing! So many tall buildings! I bought all kinds of souvenirs so I would always remember it, even you, journal. I even bought a very nice shirt that said ‘I <3 NY’, which is true! I changed into it right away, even though they didn‘t have changing booths there. And the shop lady gave me her number too, and she too offered to show me around! I was really amazed at how friendly America was.

After that, Aiden took me ‘upstate’ to the camp he told me about so much. It was a great place! And so big! Aiden showed me all around the place, and even introduced me to his American friends. There was a skinny one named Gabe, and a loud one by the name of Tofur. They were working on a truck of some sort, but they were having trouble putting in the engine, so I helped, and they were very impressed. After that, I saw a lady friend of his named Annabeth through a rainbow (I believe that was an ‘Iris Message‘). They seem like they will be a lot of fun! I can tell, we will soon be good friends. I must go, journal, because Tofur was nice enough to invite me on an american-style road trip in his truck! We are going to get the girl in the rainbow from Florida. I don’t know how far that is, but it can’t be very long. I should be able to write again in a few days.

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ten months in summary

I suppose I should start out by explaining why it’s been so long since I last wrote anything. About ten months ago we had a bit of a war. Our side won, so i guess bully for us. problem with war though is that no matter which side wins, for those of us stuck on the front line, it never feels like much of a victory. We lost a lot of good people. I lost friends. Thomas and Dick are dead.

I’ve watched a lot of people die in the past couple years. I don’t think any of them have hit me as hard of those two. Dick was a good man. There’s not much love lost between me and the Ares kids, in general they’re all dicks. Gotta be some sort of cosmic irony that the only one that managed to be a decent person was named Dick. He died in battle against a titan. He died helping us beat the shit out of a titan.

Then there’s Thomas. He died after spending the better part of a century protecting the camp. He spent what was left of his life and strength weakening the titan so that we would have a chance. In the end it was all we could do to defeat him.

We escaped Thomas’ cave just in time to meet up with all of the rest of the campers as they got back from the main front at Olympus. Guess things went well over there too. Western civilization is safe or some such, the gods are happy with all of us kids and I guess Percy struck some kind of deal so they’ll stop ignoring us so much. Great…. Just what I need, more attention from the gods. It’s not like I barely make it out alive and human every time I run into one of those pompous blowhards.

The weeks following the battle were a blur. We had funerals for all of the fallen campers. Di immortales we burned a lot of shrouds. Seems like we spent days burning them. For a week the only songs sung around the bonfires were funeral dirges. Even the sheer joy inherent in the realization that somehow, against all odds you’re still alive wasn’t enough to shield against the utter and complete sense of loss that those pyres brought.

My friends and I had a separate ceremony for Thomas and Dick. The night after the battle of Manhattan, we snuck out to the shore. I stole a pair of canoes from the lake. we loaded them up with what we could. Tim offered a few suggestions on proper funerary objects, said they were ancient greek traditions. Gabe used a flaming arrow to light the boats on fire and I made sure the fires really burned. Aiden gave a small eulogy. British guys have a way with words, not sure what half of it meant but it got tears in both Tim and Gabe’s eyes. As the boats moved beyond sight Gabe started singing. For the past few years he’s been claiming that he’s tone deaf. He’s never sung at a bonfire with his siblings and doesn’t play any instruments. All around he’s an oddity amongst his siblings in the Apollo cabin. But that night he put all the songs sung throughout the rest of camp to shame. I’m glad it was dark that night, i don’t think the others would believe the water on my cheeks was from the splash of the waves.

A week after the battle was over things had started to look almost normal around camp again. Repairs from the battle were being made and people were starting to smile agian. New cabins were even being set up for the lesser gods of Olympus. Aiden, Gabe, and I made a trip to the old man we borrowed the truck from. I managed to strike a deal with him. Landed myself a job as his official mechanic in exchange for permanent ownership of the truck. Funny how a summer job and my first set of wheels almost make me feel like a normal teenager. Ruxpin seems to enjoy riding shotgun with me. Sticks his head out the window and everything.

When I haven’t been at the Tractor Yard, I’ve been putting work into the truck. Gabe and I have been making some major modifications. We started with some basic maintenance. Got her running well enough to get me to and from Quogue, new tires and breaks. Eventually we added a towing arm that doubles as a catapult. Greek fire and Celestial bronze cannon balls should make our next encounter with the hydra interesting. And if all else fails there’s always the go-to Flying Bear Attack. By the time winter came around I had pretty much worked off the truck and every tractor in the fleet was operating better than the day it rolled of the line. Unfortunately one of the problems that comes with having adult things like cars is that you also have to have money to keep them fueled and working. I had been tossing around the idea of a battering ram for the front end something like what cop cars have, but that seemed a bit boring. Necessity is the mother of invention though, and my need for cash gave me an idea. It took a couple of weeks, but I managed to attach the snow plow just in time for the first storm of the season. Boring eh? Did I mention it was sixty pounds of reinforced Celestial bronze with retractable spikes? The winter storms were enough to pay for the last of the modifications on the Battle Wagon. I modified an old engine to run off of solar cells. Turns out that a couple of former campers have been working on something about quantum leaping dots. I don’t know all the details, but i know that they’re damn efficient. and with some help from Gabe, I’ve got the underside of the hood glowing like the sun while a thin liner of these dots absorb the light. Thankfully Aiden showed up with a new camper just in time to help me get the engine installed.

See, Aiden’s spent most of the past year bouncing back and forth across the atlantic. As one of the few campers that’s from Europe he’s been picked as to help find Half-Bloods on the other side of the pond. When Jackson struck his deal with Zeus and the gods to make sure that all of the demigods were claimed he didn’t really take into account how dangerous being claimed is and how.. uh… busy the gods have been. Everywhere. Here in the U.S. there’s a whole system of satyrs out searching for us, back in the homelands not so much. That means the already stretched thin satyrs have to try and operate all over the world. So he’s been lending a hand.

Most recently he brought back Alexandros, a son of Hercules, straight from Greece of all places. Guess his dad doesn’t get out much. Anyways, he showed up just in time. The boy is a beast. He lifted the engine with his bare hands and just set it into the truck like it was nothing. took me chains and a pulleys to get it out and even then i needed help from Gabe.

Speaking of Gabe, the kid’s doing well for himself. His relationship with Aiden and Susan’s amazonian sister has actually picked up after a rocky start. Add to it that all the help he’s been giving me with the war wagon’s got him bulking up pretty well and that he’s hit a growth spurt over the winter, she’s had to actually fight off a few other girls around camp. He’s still a bit shy and awkward, but his knack for poetry’s had a few girls swooning.

Things with Susan have been going well enough. She tolerates the time I’ve put into the war wagon. I think mostly because me being one of the few campers with a car makes me seem a bit cooler to some of the other kids. She has a habit of sneaking up on me when I’m working under the truck and hijacking my stereo to play whatever gods awful music it is she’s into. She also gets control of it whenever I take her out to the city or to cruise around long island. I hope she never realizes that i’ve got a second set of presets that she hasn’t commandeered yet. We’ve had a few real dates since last summer, but when she had to go back to school come fall it was mostly letters which suck because Dyslexia’s a bitch, and Iris messages, which suck because I always feel weird talking to my girlfriend over a connection monitored by my great aunt (not sure the exact relation, but if Gaia was her grandma and my dad’s great grandma then I definitely don’t want her listening in.) I managed to set up a two way radio system by the end of winter break when she came to visit camp that uses alternating signals to confuse monsters. The connection’s still a bit sketchy, but it beats going months without contact. She was Definitely happy to see me when she finally got back a couple weeks ago to spend the summer at camp. Although not having Tim around has had her kinda down.

Tim spent the past couple months down in florida with her dad where he’s been lecturing on ancient Greek and Roman stuff. I don’t know all the details, but she seemed pretty upset about being interrupted when I sent her an Iris message to tell her that the War Wagon was finished. I figure she was just upset because she missed all of us. So I got the guys together for a road trip to test out the new ride. We made the trip from Long Island to Florida in record time. Ran into a few minor problems and detours with monsters, but let me tell ya, a five foot wide spiked bronze snow plow trumps most things you’ll find on a lonely highway through the Carolina’s

Susan was ecstatic when Tim climbed out of the truck. Happier than when she first got back to camp and saw me. Almost happy enough to forget that I disappeared suddenly one morning and forgot to tell her me and the guys were going on a road trip. I think I managed to get back on her good side when I told her that I had noticed how upset she was without her best friend and so I went over a thousand miles to try and bring a smile to her face. I think she chalked it up to my impulsive nature.

Which brings us to today and the explanation of why I haven’t been keeping up this journal for the better part of a year. Turns out I dropped it in Thomas’ cave. The cave that is bound to the Oracle. The cave that the new Oracle, Rachel, lives in. I’ve spent the past ten months avoiding that cave for a few reasons. Rachel’s nice and all, but after meeting Evie, both before and after her curse, the thought of a new Oracle just seems off. Especially given the way things went last time. Anyways, we were all woken up last night by dreams of Thomas. Even dead he still manages to boss us around. We were sent to the cave and given a new prophecy. Damned thing went on forever. Still trying to make sense of it all, but i’ve got a feeling it means a trip to Europe. Unfortunately, a snow plowing gig can only supply so much capital and the War Wagon isn’t equipped for transatlantic voyages. Looks like it’s back to the drawing boards because we’ve got to get across the ocean ASAP.

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Back to camp

I have officially found the most epic combination of words in the English language, “FLYING BEAR ATTACK!!!”

Ok, sorry, might be getting a bit ahead of myself. But I mean, COME ON!! If you had an opportunity to use that phrase wouldn’t you want to just skip to that part of the story? Let’s back up. Things in New York were slowing down a bit because of Clarisse and the Ares cabin showing up and beating the living shit out of a Drakon. Great as it was that they finally got off their asses and decided to help, it meant that camp was all but unguarded. Annabeth sent us to camp to support Thomas and Argus. We stole a helicopter from the local news crew. Slightly cooler ride than the old golf cart. Got most of the way to camp before having to make an emergency landing outside of Quogue, which is apparently a place and supposedly pronounced like the town from Family Guy.

Picked up the most beat up old truck I’ve ever laid eyes on from an old man renting tractors. Pretty Boy laid down his granddad’s necklace as collateral for the loaner. Didn’t even hesitate to do it. Good guy, fits in the group well. I think Tim’s happy to have someone else to fight monsters with that doesn’t just do the first thing that comes to mind in every situation. At least she’s been shaking her head in defeat and questioning how she ended up with us slightly less lately. The truck works, barely. Got plans to fix it up before we give it back to the old man. Figure worst case scenario the thing’s gonna be in great shape and will last him the rest of his life. Best case scenario we persuade him to let us keep it and I really trick it out and make a war wagon.

Had to make a detour to rescue Dick from his brothers, Phobos and Deimos. Assholes had him tied up in his chains and were torturing the hell outta him. Not just beating him, but making him live out his worst fears, because apparently that’s what family time is like when your a child of Ares. We tried to stage a rescue but these guys were full out gods. Luckily we’ve got a few gods on our side and they showed up just in time to give those two no-necks a hell of an ass-wuppin. Nox and Helios showed up with their daughters and like any bullies, fear and terror proved that they were useless in a fair fight. Damned cowards. I swear if Dick weren’t one of the most selfless and brave bastards I’ve ever met I’d think that Ares’ entire bloodline inherited a coward gene. Had to sacrifice poor Dick’s chain armor to appease his asshole father because unlike his other siblings he went to fight rather than using hurt pride as an excuse to hide like a bunch of chickens. I’ll have to look into making him a new suit of armor, maybe I can make something similar for him. Something that he can take off. Those chains were starting to smell.

We got on the road again, with the addition of the Neaderthal brothers’ fancy jeep. I was driving the truck with Dick riding shotgun and Gabe in the bed playing gunner while Tim and Pretty Boy took the jeep. We were making good time until we turned a corner and there ahead of us blocking the road like an overturned semi was our old friend the goddamned hydra. We’ve got to be some of the unluckiest half-bloods at camp! We’ve run into this stupid thing three times now!

The second I saw the thing I new what I had to do. I yelled to Dick to grab the wheel and be ready to floor it. I climbed out my window into the bed and told Dick to slam the brakes when I said to. I picked up Ruxpin, who’d been hanging out in his compact dog form, lined up my shot, waited till we were thirty feet away. I shouted for Dick to stop, pulled back my arm, and launched Ruxpin with all my strength, hitting his activation switch as I let go. FLYING BEAR ATTACK!!!

It couldn’t have worked better. The hydra got hit with 8000 pounds of bear traveling at 70 miles an hour and took a combo of celestial bronze teeth and claws right to the chest. It didn’t kill the thing, but it’ll think twice before messing with me and my bear. We all hopped out of our vehicles and jumped into the fight. Arrows, swords, hammer, and bear the thing was too slow and too distracted getting tackled by Ruxpin to put up much fight. It was tough though, no matter how many times we hit it, it just kept going. I heard somewhere that the hydra will regrow lost heads, but I think it regenerates from any cuts and bruises pretty quick. It finally managed to shake Ruxpin off of it and Dick did the most awesome thing I’ve seen him do ever. He leapedonto Ruxpins tail, ran across his back and launched himself sword first at the hydra. I swear he slid 5 feet down the thing’s chest dragging his sword with him like he was filleting a fish. That was enough. It was dead and dust before he hit the ground.

We finally made it to camp and after taking out some harpies helping Argus, we found Thomas and made it to the Big House. Thomas’ sword is broken, but he’s still got his knife and was using the Rod of Asclepius like a mace. When we got there, he used the rod, some wine from Mr. D’s private stash, a bunch of dragon’s teeth and his own blood to raise an army of dead warriors. Not just any dead warriors, half-bloods. Dick bought us some time by summoning a ring of swirling blades at the entrance to Thomas’ cave where monsters were coming out like a river, so we’re gearing up for our last stand. We went from five kids, one omniclops, a small dragon, and one old, tough camp councilor to an army in a matter of minutes. For the first time in days, it feels like we might actually have a shot in this fight.

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A letter to the Oracle

(The following letter can be found for those foolish enough to go looking in an unlocked desk in Thomas’ cave. It appears to be the newest in stacks of letters most of which are yellowed and faded with the passage of years) (The writing is flowing and practiced from a time where penmanship was still taught and expected.)

Hello My Love,

I’m sorry, it’s been too long since I’ve written. Things have gotten hectic here and I’ve barely had time to eat or sleep much less write. Of course you know all this, but then that’s par for the course isn’t it? What was it you told me? “Just because I know what you’ll say doesn’t mean I don’t like getting letters.” I haven’t forgotten.

I gave the Hephaestus boy a pendant I saved for you. I always hoped I’d manage to surprise you with it someday. He’s got the affections of a young Aphrodite girl Susan is her name I think. What she sees in him I can’t begin to fathom but then I never could figure out what you see in me. “Don’t argue with the oracle.” I know I know, but I liked the way you always ended our arguments. He’s headstrong, stubborn, and brash but his heart is in the right place. He’ll be there to fight for them when the time comes.

The Athena girl lives up to her mother’s legacy and then some. She’s the best voice of reason and strategy I’ve seen in at least a generation. I don’t know where they’d be without her especially the son of Hephaestus. She’s no shrinking violet in battle but she shines when weapons are put away and reason is brought to bear. I’m worried she’ll overestimate her chances though. They ran into Prometheus once before and if I know that weasel he’s not done with them. I should have chained him back to that rock myself.

Apollo’s son is another matter entirely. He’s got some skills with that bow of his but he seems just as likely to hide in a corner as fight. At least he seems to have his bowels under control. Baby steps right? Don’t get me wrong the boy is a good shot but unless he finds his spine he’ll never stand up to what’s coming even if they do survive this fight. Still they need a healer and he’s decent enough at his craft so there’s potential there.

The Ares boy wouldn’t have been my first choice to watch their backs. Sure he’s determined but he’s failed before and the enemy will try to use that against him, it haunts him still. He wears his father’s chains like armor but doesn’t realize just how much they weigh him down. I’m not convinced that he won’t buckle and run when the real onslaught starts and if he does I’ll send him to Hades service myself. Then again I failed you and I’m still here. I can’t very well deny him a chance at redemption now can I?

The Aphrodite’s son is nothing but trouble but he’s got more grit than most of his siblings. He works well with the Athena girl, with all of them really, but if you can’t get along with an offspring of the lady of love when they are actively trying to be your friend well, you might as well live in a cave. I don’t doubt his worth as a negotiator and Olympus knows we could use more level heads right now.

I sent the children off to New York this morning or was it yesterday? I can’t remember now. The titans are on the move and we’re not ready. Over fifty years of planning, begging Olympus to listen, arguments with every god I can think of from rivers spirits to the big three for support and we’re not ready!

Chiron and the rest of the camp are getting ready to leave to support Jackson and the rest in New York leaving just you and I, but that’s the way it’s always been hasn’t it? I know that Argus will stay to guard the camp as he always has but that doesn’t mean much against what we’re facing. At least I won’t be surprised.

I wish I had been more honest with them about what’s coming but I’m not sure their oaths to you hold as strong as they once did. I hope they’ll forgive me when the time comes. I just know that if they knew- and there’s the alarms again. Back to work!

All my love,
Thomas

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The Final Battle: Part I

Note: this adventure log is incomplete. I’m just posting this as a place-holder. I’ll come back and fix it later.

From the journal of Gabe Miyazaki, Apollo Cabin:

So, if you’ve been paying any attention to the news lately, you’ve probably heard about that “freak storm system” that’s been traveling across the United States, baking a beeline for New York City. But all of us at Camp Half-Blood know it’s really Typhon, Kronos’ secret weapon in the war against Olympus. The hammer has been raised, and we know where it will strike; all that remains is to wait for the blow to fall.

We’ve heard news that the Princess Andromeda is making its way up from the Sea of Monsters along the east coast, heading straight for New York. Percy Jackson and Beckendorf
Everyone’s spent the last few days preparing for battle. Everyone’s on edge: the battle will be bad, but having to wait makes it so much worse.

Beckendorf is dead. Selena starts crying. Everyone is sad.

We deck ourselves out for war, pay off some debts to the Stoll brothers (something about Dick and a distraction" involving several tons of fireworks, I don’t know exactly), and set off for New York City.

Ruxpin (in dog-form) is tracking Kronos’ sleeper-agents by scent. We start running down Park Avenue.
There’s a man walking three dogs. Hellhounds, actually. The dog-walker doesn’t seem to realize exactly what he’s walking. They break free of their leashes and attack us, as soon as they catch our scent.
Since Gabe is the most delicious-looking, they attack him first. 10 damage in one bite. The first (“Fifi”) savages Gabe’s right forearm. Gabe starts screaming, and even hardened New Yorkers stop to look at us. Eventually, Tofur smashes the skull of the last of them. Gabe takes the dog-walker aside, and while the Mist is still working to occlude the dog-walker’s memory, Gabe tells him that his dogs ran off and he hit his head really hard. He asks why Gabe’s arm is bleeding. He says it’s nothing, runs off with the rest of the gang after Ruxpin.

Norman Thomas High school. Yancey Academy is across the street. (We fought something here, I’m not sure I remember what. Or maybe we fought the Hellhounds in front of Norman Thomas High. I forget.)

Next, Ruxpin leads us to the Collectors Club (22 E 35th St, New York, NY). we follow Ruxpin into the back-alley, and come face-to-navel with a pair of Laistrygonian giants. They’re debating about what kind of human they should “collect” next.
Gabe blasts one of them squarely in the face with an Arrow of the Sun. Blinded, the giant grabs a fistful of building and hurls it at us. Or at least, where he thought we were. Actually, he missed really badly (critical failure). His throw goes wonky, he releases too late, and winds up beaning himself with the rubble.
Aiden casts Hideous Laughter on the other Laistrygonian. The giant falls prone, but it still takes us a few rounds to administer a coup de grace. The dice are not cooperating.

Next, Ruxpin leads us to Cornell University. There’s a very tall woman walking a pair of verylarge dogs, apparently named “Castor” and “Pollux”. She’s clearly mythical, but it’s not immediately clear how, exactly.
She’s from Canada, but she’s not a Laistrygonian. She’s a Hyperborean. The dogs areHellhounds, but very well-trained. We warn her that there’s going to be a big battle soon, and she might get caught in the crossfire if she’s not careful. She says that she really just wants to finish her term paper. We tell her that seriously, she should get out of town. At the very least, keep her head down.

Finally, Ruxpin leads us to Prometheus. We exchange “pleasantries”. He tells us all about how the gods are unjust, cruel, capricious, unfair, etc. WE tell him we’ve heard it all before. Golden Age of Man and all that propaganda. But he’s persistent (can remember all the points he made, but some of them were pretty good).
We ask where Pandora’s pithos is now; we’re still mad about that, and want it back. He says simply “all in good time”.

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Gabe Gets a Date, Ruxpin gets repaired

From the journal of Gabe Miyazaki, Apollo Cabin:

HOLY CRAP I’VE GOT A DATE!

The whole thing started when Tofur went to go ask the Aphrodites for a favor. They made a show of being nice to him, but one of the older guys offered him a handshake as he was leaving, and when he touched Tofur, he cast a spell to make Tofur start dancing uncontrollably. I was coming back from the archery range and saw what they did, and rushed to defend him. I don’t know what I was thinking; even an Aphrodite could probably kick my butt in a close-range fight! But I was mad, because they shouldn’t have treated Tofur like that. He came under a flag of truce, and he just wanted to talk.

So I showed up and started yelling at the guy who cursed Tofur, when all of a sudden, the most radiantly-beautiful girl in the whole Aprhodite Cabin (and that’s really saying something!) was talking directly to me, and not asking me to get out of her way or anything! I think that she had some kind of question about why we were fighting and what all the commotion was about, but I didn’t really catch it. I was too enraptured with her tall, fair Nordic features and her long flaxen tresses. I’d seen her around before, from a distance, but this was the closest I’d ever been to her.

“Inga, right?” I asked. I’d remembered her name, and even managed to say it out loud. I was proud of myself.

“Um, yeah. That’s me,” she said, brushing a stray lock of golden hair behind her left ear.

Suddenly, I heard myself say the craziest thing I’ve ever said in my whole life: “Wudjaliketogodatewithme?”, I exclaimed.

“Uhh, come again?” she asked.

“Would you like to go on a date with me?” I said again, more clearly this time. I think that I must have caught her off-guard, because she couldn’t think of a reason to say no, and wound up saying “sure” instead. Maybe Aprodites just aren’t used turning down dates or something. That must be it.

Anyway, I managed to schedule a date for next Thursday. Looks like Tofur’s little pep-talk worked! Man, I really, really hope that nothing happens with that Great Prophecy thing between now and then, because that would really suck!

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Nepenthe Gardens Retirement Home

Note: this adventure log is incomplete. I’m just posting this as a place-holder. I’ll come back and fix it later.

From the journal of Gabe Miyazaki, Apollo Cabin:

Thomas sent us on a quest to a nursing home in upstate New York. Aidan, a son of Aphrodite, came with us. Thomas only told us the person’s initials: J.D. (I think). Didn’t even tell us whether we were looking for a man or a woman.

The receptionist didn’t want to let us in. Aidan charmed his way past her, [ I don’t remember how, exactly. I remember thinking it was ingenious].

Eventually, after running into a really creepy old guy who tried to put the moves on Tofur, we found our quarry: J______ D______, a daughter of Apollo. One of the Furies was guarding her. We left her a knife to defend herself.

She probably died fighting. Good for her. Man, the gods can really be dicks sometimes. And by sometimes, I mean “a lot of the time”.

As we leave Thomas’ cave, I notice Thomas cutting his hand with the knife we got from J.D.. Why would he do that?

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Busy day

Today was probably the busiest day I’ve had in my life, and i’ve had days that involved changing biological kingdoms. Woke up with Thomas’ voice in my head. Truly terrifying. The guy has more than enough reason to want me dead, the thought of him being in my mind doesn’t sound like a good way to get him to not kill me.
Luckily I think he might be looking out for us. The war with the Titan’s is coming to a head, we’re expecting an attack any day now. Thomas woke up me and the guys to give us new weapons. Er… well, mostly old weapons. Really old. The hammer he gave me was made from the remnants of the tool my dad and the cyclopes used to craft Zeus’ Master Bolt. It’s pretty badass. I already nearly killed myself with it three times, the thing crackles with energy.
It kinda has me worried though, the way Thomas has been acting. Always tired and injured, the ominous way he holds the knife I made him, the blood he had us fetch, and now these gifts. It’s like he’s planning something. And I got a feeling that him walking away isn’t in the plans.
Spent the rest of the morning trying to remake the heart for Ruxpin. Thought with the new hammer I’d be able to do it. Broke an anvil and several walls in the Big House. Mr. D is gonna be pissed. Was thinking about making a vine trellis to replace the wall in his room I got blown through.
After renovating the Big House, Clarisse and Silena came walking up. Silena was balling her eyes out. My big brother Charlie is dead. It was tough to hear. We’ve lost a lot of campers this past year, a few from my cabin. And as a halfblood, dying is kinda a way of life. Way I figure it, from the time we’re born we’re as good as dead, just a matter of how long before our bodies realize it. But Charlie was tough. He’s survived a lot, and him being gone is just… wrong.
He died saving camp. Took a whole ship full of baddies with him. When the real fighting starts that ship could be the difference between winning and losing. Chronos and his army are going to pay. There’s a blood debt and I’m gonna do my damnedest to collect.
With Beckendorf dead, I figured we didn’t have long before the titans strike. I need Ruxpin. I needed Hades to give me back the Heart. THe guys called in a favor from Eros, burned a lot of valentines decorations to get him to stop by. He gave us an arrow, the lovey dovey kind. Dangerous magic, I’ve fought a lot of monsters and pissed off a lot of gods, that arrow scared me. With the arrow all that was left was to get Hades and Persephone together and stab her without her looking at me. Easy right?
Had to sacrifice Ruxpin’s body to get his heart. Hades showed up, Persephone showed up. we explained that it was all just a misunderstanding, and Hades being the reasonable guy that he is took it all pretty well. didn’t even smite me a little. Persephone stabbed herself with the arrow which saved us the trouble and now the happy couple is all made up, I’ve got the Heart, and my flame is back. And for once I’m down to only being on the shitlist of one deity that I know of.

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Forging ahead

Well, I’m still alive! Thought I’d start off on a high note, cause it goes downhill from there. Ruxpin is in pieces, Hades stole his heart, and my dad is apparently pissed that i lost his sacred artifact cause my fire’s out. Up side, cause I’m always an optimist, I think I’ve come up with a way to get on Hades’ (the dude, not the place) good side… er, well his not as bad side… Ok, the side that doesn’t want to kill me, whichever side that is, I want to be on it.

Downside, there’s a good chance that it’ll piss off the other two of the Big Three. Hopefully not enough for me to get electrocuted or drowned though. I’m going to make a sword for Hades. Already got started on it. Good three hours of work in so far, figure about six or seven left to go. Thankfully Thomas let me use his workshop and a supply of Stygian Iron and all I had to do was make him a dagger.
Thing about Thomas is that just about everything he says or does has an ominous undertone. Take his asking for the dagger. Couldn’t help but get the feeling he has plans for that dagger. Couldn’t help but get the feeling that those plans are going to be very violent. Couldn’t help but get the feeling that whatever he’s planning it’s going to be a bad thing.

Finally had that talk with Gabe, he really is clueless. I’d be willing to bet that no one in camp can boast chasing off or defeating no less than three hydras not to mention having traveled to the underworld a couple times and time travel. Freakin time travel!! We’re talkin’ Marty McFly, slingshot around the sun, H.G. Wells stuff here, we’ve done it. And the poor boy is oblivious to how awesome that is even by half-blood standards that’s pretty high on the list of bad-assery. Admittedly we’ve almost gotten ourselves killed every step of the way, but we’re still here, still alive. Hopefully the pep talk will help and he’ll start getting some self confidence. At the very least i’d like to be able to get through a quest without having to stop so he can change his soaked pants.
It’s getting late and i’ve still got work to do repairing Ruxpin.

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out of Hades

I’m gonna die. It’s not like it’s a big shock, what with being a demi-god and all. I mean, death has kinda been on the table as a serious likelihood since I first hit adolescence. But this time I’m pretty sure I’m a goner. What’s worse I’m probably gonna die at the hands of the last person in the world.. er… worlds? you want to piss off before dying. I think I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me start over.

Me and the guys just got back from Hades. The place, not the dude. On my list of favorite places, it’s.. not. Apparently Thomas managed to get himself into some kinda bind down there and needed us to pull his ass out. Not to big a deal, he’s saved us plenty of times. But still a trip into the underworld should wrack up some brownie points.

Getting there wasn’t too bad, narrowly escaped some giant spiders in Thomas’ cave, scored cheap passage from the boatman, and got to see Cerberus which is always nice. Also Gabe actually managed to pull off some awesome taking out a freakin’ hydra in one shot. That kid might actually become a badass someday if he ever realizes he’s got the best combat history of our little group. Things were actually going pretty well for a trip into the deepest pits of the afterlife from which no mortal should ever return.

That is until I stopped to smell the roses, or daffodils, or whatever they were. Stupid flower looked out of place and was kinda creepin me out so I did the sensible thing and burned it. well next thing i know a bunch more pop up in it’s place, so i figure i’ve got the best flaming green thumb in the history of the underworld. light a few more on fire to see what happens cause who knows what crazy rules things down there follow. next thing i know we’re face to face with Persephone, Queen of the Underworld, Flower-o-phile extraordinaire, and royal pain in my bellows. apparently those flowers were hers and she thought i’d make a good mushroom.

to be honest the exact course of events around that time are a little fuzzy. switching genus will do that to a guy i guess. all I know is that i ended up making some oaths on the river styx. (like i don’t have enough of those wracking up) those oaths are the cause of my current predicament, but again I’m getting ahead of myself. as we continued into the underworld we finally found Thomas fighting with some kids in roman armor and arguing with Herr Burgermeister Meisterburger. something about becoming the furries asshole? i don’t know and frankly i don’t care. We’ve kicked this guy around the world of the living i was more than ready to kick him around the world of the dead. so i sent Ruxpin after him.

First off let me just say I love that bear. he took Herr Nazipants right out of the fight. when Ruxpin got off Herr Goosestepperstein, Gabe wrapped him up with a crazy arrow rope thing and we knocked him out. He must have had some sorta mental control over the kids Thomas was fighting cause when he went out they did too. apparently we did too good a job cause Thomas was afraid they wouldn’t make it. so Tim and I had to rush to the River Lethe to get some water. Apparently the underworld has five rivers. the Styx is river of hate; the Akheron, sorrow; Kokytos, lamentation, and Phlegethon river of fire. The Lethe is the river of unmindfulness. means you touch it you forget stuff. why can’t i ever go to the river of fire? I’m good with fire. but no, it’s always “swear on the river of hate Tofur, get water from the river of forgetfulness Tofur, cry me a river of lamentation Tofur.” OK, so no one’s ever asked me to do the third but still river of fire, son of the god of volcanoes, you’d think of the five i might have some interaction with the fire one.

anyways, at the river of forgetfulness Tim almost fell in and we both apparently got touched by some river spirit. I don’t know about Tim, but getting touched by the spirit of a river that wipes peoples minds rings alarm gongs the size of a cyclopes’ dinner plate. can’t shake the feeling I’m probably forgetting something and i don’t think i’ll be able to remember. in the end though we got the water, saved the kids, and got the heck out of there.

That was all yesterday. I ended the day pretty sure I was safe. At least as safe as any of us is with the war against Kronos and his goon squad hanging over the camp like a burial shroud. even Beckindorf has been on edge lately and he’s usually pretty laid back. But aside from the looming threat of attack from an army of monsters, traitors, and titans, i was OK. then i tried to get ahold of her majesty and got a busy signal. lines are down. how does a system of communication that routes calls through the goddess of rainbows even go down? so i go talk to Thomas cause he’s the authority on all things underworld. and the only authority figure that i don’t want to smack regularly. seems that just about all routes in and out of Hades (the place) have been cut off by Hades (the dude). Am I the only one that thinks they should really get around to making that a bit less ambiguous?

So at Thomas’ recommendation I write a letter to Persephone. problem is that Hades (the place) is locked up tighter than the stick up Hades’ (the dude’s) backside. So in order to make sure that the letter gets where i want it to or at least i get to talk directly to somebody, i may have chosen to word my letter to sound as though there was a bit more to my encounter with Princess Petals than me promising to build her something if she doesn’t turn me into a fungus again. Gods i hate when plans work. Now Hades (the dude) thinks I’m getting fresh with his wife. I’ve never even been able to land a date with a normal girl, let alone a married goddess. And of course Queen Pomegranate did nothing to help plead my case. lets see, this brings the tally of gods that actively hate me to 3. killed Zeus’s bird, gave Dionysus a splitting headache, and sent a love letter to the wife of the lord of the underworld. I’m a deadman. worst of all that pasty angst fiend busted up Ruxpin, tore his head right off. hopefully the body’s intact and I can get repairs done before Kronos decides to get of his big golden ass and fight us. had a few upgrades in mind anyways. the gold weapons those kids Thomas was fighting gave me some ideas.

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