“Hey, Grover, c’mere,” Percy whispered from behind an entirely different tree.
Grover tossed a glance over his shoulder and came closer. “What?”
“Do you think you could keep Annabeth distracted for me? Just for today?” Percy pleaded.
“Um, sure, but… Why?”
“I’m making her a surprise and it has to be a surprise. So she can’t know. Please just keep her busy and out of the Secondary Camp Hall until I tell you.”
“Well, sure I guess. You can count on me!” whispered Grover. “She’s practicing with her dagger. I’ll go keep her there for a while. Good luck!” Grover tried his best to look nonchalant as he scurried to Annabeth, and Percy made off to the Secondary Camp Hall.
Twenty minutes later saw Percy frantically cracking eggs, heating ovens, and mixing cake batter. Oh, and added blue food dye. Percy was adding a lot of blue food dye. He doubted that it would be coming off his skin before next week… but he didn’t really see why that was a problem, either.
Do you know what was a problem? The fact that he didn’t know how much flour to put in or how many eggs to crack or how hot to make the stove or how to grease the pan or how to mix the batter thoroughly or how much sugar to add or… It was driving him nuts! There was simply no way he was going to get this done in time! No way!
“Jackson, what in Hades are you doing?”
Percy spun around, quickly dragging a blue hand across his blue mouth. It didn’t make much of a difference. “Baking a cake. What do you want?”
Clarisse slowly and deliberately sat down on the nearest chair and began to polish her spear. “So you can’t even bake a cake, eh? And why are you doing it, anyway? You look awful. Like, more awful than usual. Which is saying something.”
As Clarisse waited for an answer and continued her polishing, Percy came to a sudden rash decision based off desperation and not a little panic. “I wanted to make a cake for Annabeth to celebrate getting together, but it’s not coming out right and if it’s not done then it won’t be a surprise. Look, I don’t know how to do this! But Clarisse, you’re a girl. You have to know SOMETHING about cooking! Please, Clarisse, you’ve got to help me!”
Clarisse rolled her eyes. “As I suspected. Look Jackson, I make war, not love. I’m no little lovesick, starry-eyed Aphrodite girl. But…” Clarisse continued. “I think I can help you out. But look here,” she said in a stern voice as she left out of her chair and pointed the tip of her spear at Percy. “I get you out of the mess you’ve gotten yourself into, you make sure this stays between you and me. You don’t tell anybody that I helped you. Hades, you don’t even tell anybody I saw you. You got that?”
Percy rose his hands above his head in mock surrender and nodded fervently. “I get it, I get it! But will you help me?”
With a sigh, Clarisse lowered her spear and set it against a wall. “Yeah. Now let’s get to work before Chase comes back.”
“Oh, thank you Clarisse, you won’t regret-”
“I better not. Now shut up and do as I say.” Percy jokingly zipped his mouth shut and got to work.
Return next Thursday for To Bake a Blue Cake: Part Three!