This story is inspired by Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Magnus Chase and the gods of Asgard, and my siblings.
Bright light shone in my eyes as I woke from the stream of nightmares. They had been relentless, the same ones replaying over and over. I had a massive headache, and thinking about my dreams didn’t help. I sat up, and slipped on a different pair of pants and a t-shirt with a big flower on it. I didn’t want to be part of the festival, but my dad would’ve wanted me to. This thought was like a knife to my heart, but I wiped away the tears and stood up taller, motivated to get my dad back, no matter what a puny ‘goddess of plants’ says ‘bout it.
I ran down the stairs and walked outside into the bright sunshine. I jumped when Max came over and put his hand on my shoulder.
“Relax, it’s me! The early spring sun is beautiful, isn’t it? All the flowers, too.”
“What do you want, Max? I just want at least a little bit of truth. I deserve that much.”
“I wanted to say that I am sorry for keeping you in the dark. It was wrong of me, and I won't do it again. I promise, just please forgive me.” He looked at me with sad eyes, like I might forgive him just because he wanted me to.
I glared back, but before too long, I said, “Fine. Just... No more keeping secrets from me.” Max looked relieved. “But you have to tell me what’s going on. Everything.”
He sighed. “It’s a long story...”
“Max... EVERYTHING” I warned.
“Fine, I’ll tell you. We have to find somewhere to sit first.” He led me into the woods and pulled me onto a tree branch. High above the ground and hidden in a canopy of leaves with just Max was just full of beans. I smiled and gestured for him to keep talking, chuffed about winning an argument with him.
“When your mom gave you to your dad, he took you in, trying to keep you hidden from monsters that lurk everywhere. They would’ve ripped you to pieces if they got the chance.” I shivered, and Max let that sink in before he continued. “When you grew up, and your fighting instincts got better, more monsters came, and you had to protect your family, right? Because they can’t see the monsters.” I nodded. “The Mist covers their eyes, and you were the only one who knew about what could be just around the corner.”
“Your life was probably full of monsters attacking, but it could’ve been more if you would’ve known who you are. As the daughter of a Greek goddess, monsters can smell you better when you know. The barrier at Camp keeps the monsters at bay so we can live somewhat peacefully together. Only demigods (half god or goddess and half human) and actual gods or goddesses can get through. All the others must get permission from Miron or one of his close students. Do you understand now?” Max studied my face as he waited for my response.
“Uh, no.” Were the two words that came out of my mouth. Max looked at me and sighed. After he told me all this information, I wanted to tell him about my weird dreams, but I didn’t feel that he’d understand. He'd probably just have a laugh at me. I climbed down from the tree and headed back to the house. I didn’t hear his footsteps behind me, but there was no doubt that he was there.
I turned around. “Max, look... I just need-” I stopped when I realized that Max actually wasn’t following me. I could’ve sworn I saw dark shapes in the tree line. A black spot seemed to cloud my vision, and the world got darker.
I woke back up on the duvet that was just the bee’s knees. The lushness was lulling me back to sleep, but something else was keeping me up.
“I don’t know what happened. I was coming out of the woods and she just fell.” A familiar voice said.
“Well, is she okay?” Someone asked.
“Yeah, Max! We want to know! She needs to help us DECORATE!” Said an obnoxious voice.
“She needs to help ME decorate. All you do is-” They were cut off by another person.
“She’ll be okay. Just a little bit of trauma, but I have no idea why. Also, some inflammation and she’s going to have a bloody massive headache when she gets up. Why don’t you two go decorate some more? Mom? You can go with them. They might need your help.”
“Alright Maxy-pie! Come along, lassies! Much to do!” This lass sounded peppier than the rest.
Footsteps sounded on the floor, and there was a slam of a door. I felt oddly sad. I guess I just really like earwigging on people.
Someone whispered, “Felicia! I know you’re awake! What happened back there? I can help you, but if you don’t tell me, you’re keeping me in the dark.”
It took lots of effort to speak through my grogginess. “Max, I’m fine. I just got startled by... by a... goose!” Laughing kind of hurt, so I chuckled. When I opened my eyes, Max was looking into my eyes. It was kind of distracting.
“There aren’t any geese living on this island.” He stated clearly. “Rest easy. I’m going to try to... help you feel better.”
I nodded, but didn’t go back to sleep. Something was worrying me, but I couldn’t remember what. It was all starting to feel fuzzy.
Something cold touched my forehead, and spread down to my toes. Moving started to feel slow, like I was underwater or in a jug of Jell-O. When I opened my eyes, the world seemed watery, like I was crying. I would’ve wiped my eyes, but I didn’t have the strength to lift my arms. I felt like a watery noodle. It was like my brain was deciding between sleep and finding all the marbles it lost. I wondered if I was dreaming and I fell into a river or something and was starting to get hypothermia, but the cold felt good on my now-feverish skin. It was soothing, and I relaxed. I was knackered, and started drifting off to sleep.
My eyes were shocked awake when I realized that I was awake, and still in Cascade’s house on the island with Max. I sat up, and we both gasped, shocked at two completely different things.
“Felicia, I-” Max said before I fainted once again.