They’d get there right on schedule. Annabeth prayed to the gods Percy would still be alive when she got there.
As the four started to run into the mass of demigods, they slowed. Annabeth cringed as she noted the fallen pines, and groaned when she saw that one of then had even fallen on the Artemis cabin. Luckily that cabin was only used when the Huntresses came visiting, but Artemis would not be pleased. A thunderous roar sounded from the pines, not at all far away, and when Annabeth looked she could see the behemoth and the trail of carnage in its wake.
“This doesn’t look very good,” Seth moaned. Aaron sucked in his breath sharply and nodded in agreement.
“Percy?” Annabeth shouted. “Percy!” No answer.
“I’m sure he’s right at the front, holding it off. He won’t be able to hear you now, but just wait, that’s right where we’re going too!” the Doctor consoled.
Annabeth smiled a bit to show gratitude. “I hope so. And we do need to blast that thing. Now.”
Seth and Aaron whispered to each other next to Annabeth. “What are you two muttering about?” she asked suspiciously.
“We were just thinking,” started Aaron.
“This is a miniturization ray,” said Seth.
“Yes. Good job keeping up,” Annabeth replied with scrunched eyebrows.
“It’s not a disappearing ray. It want be gone, it’ll just be smaller,” Aaron explained.
“How small, and what do we do with the mini version?” finished Seth.
Annabeth’s eyebrows shot up. She hadn’t thought of that. How small WOULD it be? And what WOULD they do with it? But, this had never been her plan. It was the Doctor’s plan. Annabeth looked to him. “Well? What’s the answer?”
“It’ll be about the size of a miniature poodle,” the Doctor informed her.
More roaring. Everyone winced as the sound came crashing on their ears. It was closer. They had moments before they needed to be in action again, and that was pushing it. “Seth, find some way to contain it and meet us there. Aaron, stay with the Doctor and me. We need to move. Now.”
Seth nodded and ran off, and Aaron opened his hands palms facing up to Annabeth. “Tell me what to do.”
“What’s the range on this, Doctor?” Annabeth asked.
“A few meters.”
“Then both of you, push.” Annabeth gripped one hand on the device and started moving as quickly as she could in the direction of the roars. The Doctor and Aaron pushed from the other side. After not too long, they picked up speed, and as they came upon the mass of demigods, Annabeth’s frantic cries of “move!” coupled with the strange device she was obviously pushing through to the front was enough to make everyone move for her.
They were past the defense line. Annabeth could see the whole scene now. A rope was tied around the dinosaur’s legs, tangling it up and forcing it to move more slowly. The ropes looked like they were about to break. Annabeth smiled. It wasn’t much, but Percy had bought them just enough time. “Percy!” she shouted again.
“Annabeth!” Percy shouted back. “You better have that thing ready to go, because this was the last idea I had!”
“Just in time!” Annabeth said, hurredly adjusting her targeting mechanism. “Doctor, you do the honors.”
The Doctor flipped a switch on the small control panel and pressed both of the two buttons. In a flash he had his sonic screwdriver out and added that to the mix. “Got it!” he yelled, right as a bright green beam of light emanated from the targeting mechanism Annabeth had designed and flooded the dinosaur and a loud, high-pitched buzz echoed in their ears.
For a second, nothing happened. Percy found his way to Annabeth and took her hand. Annabeth hardly noticed. She just held her breath, hoping against hope this crazy plan would work. “Is it working?” she asked the Doctor.
“Give it time,” he said. The dinosaur seemed to be stuck in the light, which was already a good thing. And, was it just Annabeth’s eyes, or was it- It was! It was getting smaller! Without thinking, she gripped Percy’s hand more tightly.
“Guys! I got it! I found a leash and collar!” Seth yelled out as he ran up, panting. “Did it wo- It did!”
There was the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex, trapped in green light, the size of a toy poodle, roaring softly with all of the air it could hold inside of it. The ray had worked, thank the gods. Or, more accurately, Annabeth reminded herself, thanks to the Doctor.
Tag Archives: Annabeth
They’d get there right on schedule. Annabeth prayed to the gods Percy would still be alive when she got there.
Part Four of this series can be found here.
Annabeth shoved the Doctor as hard as she could just as a pine tree close to them fell where they had been standing only seconds earlier. “Watch out!” she yelled impulsively. Whirling around and assuming an attack stance, her dagger already drawn, Annabeth focused in on the huge dinosaur claw about two yards away from her. The two demigods still trying to hack at the thing looked her way occasionally, but couldn’t waste enough breath to verbally ask for help.
“The celestial bronze!” Annabeth shouted above the roaring dinosaur and the clanging metal. “It won’t affect it!”
The demigod closer to her, Aaron from Ares cabin, looked her way for another second before panting out “Why… in Hades… not?”
“It’s not a monster! It’s a mortal. It doesn’t matter how hard you try, you’ll never even graze it with those weapons!”
“Then what… do we do?” the other demigod, Seth, again from Ares, asked her. He obviously wasn’t ready to give up the idea of slowing the beast’s walk with his brawn, but he was slowing down a bit as he realized it was pointless.
“I have a… an ally,” Annabeth said quickly. “He can help. He says we won’t have to kill it if we take it back home instead.”
The Doctor waved from beside her. “Hello!”
Aaron rose an eyebrow. “You really trust this guy?”
“Yes,” Annabeth said.
That was enough for both of them. The word of Annabeth Chase went far throughout Camp Half-Blood. “What… do you… want us to do?” Seth asked again.
“Put away your weapons. And come with me. We need to regroup and figure out how to get this thing back home safe and sound. And we need to do it before it reaches the cabins.” In an instant both boys were retreating from the dinosaur and fleeing the woods with Annabeth and the Doctor.
“This ally of yours, is he demigod? Or mortal?” asked Aaron as they fled, zig-zagging a bit to keep the dinosaur off their trail.
“Alien,” Annabeth answered. Out of the corner of her eye she saw Aaron and Seth glance at each other incredulously. And not without reason, Annabeth reminded herself. It was a pretty hard thing to believe. She wasn’t even altogether sure herself why she believed it, but she did. “He has a small spaceship with him he calls his…” she tried to remember the word.
“TARDIS!” the Doctor was more than happy to clarify. “Time and Relative Dimension in Space. It’s a time machine, see. Now when you think of a spaceship—” the Doctor paused to swerve around a tree, “you probably get to thinking about the Enterprise, and Death Stars, and all that science-fictiony stuff that’s not really real and is really just you humans being very imaginative and a bit thick. But the TARDIS isn’t like that. It doesn’t fly, see. It kind of, disappears here, reappears there. It can travel in space and time, and it can get this ancient creature back to it’s original time, and it’s original area.”
“Wait wait wait, back up!” shouted Seth. “If Annabeth believes you’re an alien, then an alien you are. But time travel? No way. There are limits to what I can believe. I’m not that gullible. And are you trying to tell me that that thing,” he jabbed a thumb over his shoulder, “is from another time?”
Annabeth chewed on her lip for a second while the silence hung in the air and everyone focused on running to the camp. “It makes sense. The celestial bronze didn’t work on it, which means it’s mortal. And dinosaurs are extinct. And the Doctor hasn’t technically given me any reason to not trust him so far.”
“What do you mean, ‘technically’?” asked Aaron.
“Well, suddenly and unexpectedly arriving in the middle of my camp just as a huge unknown threat stumbled into is is kind of suspicious,” Annabeth allowed. They were back at camp again. When she saw Percy’s black hair in the crowd, Annabeth sighed softly in relief. Soon they could find Chiron handle this together.
Aaron’s mouth gaped while all four hurried through the assembled demigods. “Kind of?! Why isn’t he a prisoner somewhere? Why are you taking information from this guy?”
“Because!” answered the Doctor before Annabeth had a chance to open her mouth. “I’m from the planet Gallifrey, I am a thousand years old, I am the last of the Timelords, and I was called here by Annabeth Chase herself. You trust me because I am the Doctor, I am going to get that dinosaur back home, and I am going to do it before it destroys your Camp Half-Blood.”
Part Two of this series can be found here.
“Most definitely,” the Doctor’s eyes sparkled as he said it. “Looking forward to it.”
“Look, we don’t have time for conversation right now. There’s kind of a T-Rex out to kill us all,” Clarisse interjected. “So if this Doctor is somebody we can trust now, I want to know his plan. Now.”
“Yes of course! Firstly, I need to get close to the beast. Within a few meters. And then-”
Clarisse cut him off. “Meters?”
After just a second of slight confusion and squinting at Clarisse the Doctor realized the problem. “Yards. A few yards.”
“Got it,” Clarisse nodded.
“I’ll go with you,” Annabeth volunteered. She may have decided to trust this time traveling Doctor, but that did not mean she was going to leave him alone on the front lines.
“Very good! Yes, excellent. Alright. Once I’m near the dinosaur I’ll be able to use this,” the Doctor said, holding up a small cylinder that glowed green on the top, “to find out where it came from.”
“Isn’t that obvious? It came from the ground. Maybe the labyrinth,” Percy offered.
“Well, yes, that’s one possibility,” admitted the Doctor.
Annabeth rose one eyebrow and looked at him. “And the others are…?” Just then there was a loud thud from not too far away from where the four of them were standing. It sounded like a fallen tree. All four of them winced.
“Haven’t got time to explain. If it’s important you’ll find out soon enough,” the Doctor said. “For now, Annabeth, lead the way.”
With a quick nod, Annabeth turned away from the small circle the group had formed and, with knife in hand, wove her way through the assembled demigods. This time it wasn’t too hard; the closer Annabeth came to the front line the more the other demigods recognized who she was and parted for her. Occasionally Annabeth would glance back to make sure that the Doctor was still trailing behind her, but she never stopped completely.
Annabeth’s eyes scanned the tree line. There. Not very far from her at all. Lowering her gaze Annabeth could make out the great claws of the dinosaur and several older demigods hacking away with little to no effect. “That’s weird,” Annabeth thought aloud.
“What is?” asked the Doctor, next to her.
“None of them are having an effect. They’re some of the best we have. With celestial bronze weapons, too.”
“Celestial bronze?” prompted the Doctor.
“The metal we make our weapons out of. It’ll harm monsters as normal, but the blade will pass right through a mortal without hurting it.” The Doctor nodded slightly and didn’t say anything. Annabeth became uneasy with the silence. Was he waiting for her to figure something out? What had she said that- Wait! “The celestial bronze!” Annabeth’s eyes widened as she said it. “It doesn’t hurt mortals!”
“There, you’ve got it!” the Doctor said. “Keep going!”
“So, this dinosaur isn’t a monster at all. It has to be mortal. So, natural. So… Dinosaurs aren’t extinct after all.” Annabeth closed her lips and became very quiet as she looked to the claws of the dinosaur. Not extinct. Not that it wasn’t possible, but… It just seemed so unlikely. And yet here was the evidence, plain as day.
“It does seem that way, doesn’t it,” replied the Doctor. He took one step forward and pressed a button on his small metal cylinder. “This is a sonic screwdriver. Comes in very handy.”
“What are you doing with it now?” Annabeth asked him as he stopped pointing the device at the dinosaur and seemed to be looking at some kind of reading off it.
“I am checking,” the Doctor replied slowly and absentmindedly, still focused on the screwdriver, “To see where this little guy came from.”
“Any luck?” Annabeth asked.
“Depends on how you look at it,” the Doctor told her, putting the sonic screwdriver away.
“And why’s that?” Annabeth pressed.
“Well, because, you’re right. It is from earth, and completely natural. But dinosaurs are still extinct. This one came from a long time ago. A very long time ago.”
“Percy!” Annabeth screamed as she ran, stretching her legs and pumping her muscles as hard as she could and yet never gaining any ground. Percy to tried to run to her, but was only being pulled further back. Annabeth cursed the gods of Olympus. “If you take him from me again, I swear on the River Styx I will never forgive you for it,” she hissed at Hera. This was her. It had to be.
Sparing her terrain only a moment, Annabeth furrowed her brow as she realized that there was nothing around them. At all. Just blackness, all over. She looked back to Percy, stopped in her tracks, and screamed.
He was gone.
She’d turned her back for one second, and he was gone. Annabeth ran to where she’d last seen him and tore at the ground. It felt like kneeling on concrete, and yet her hands grasped at nothing.
After several minutes, Annabeth stopped trying to get to him. She crumpled in on herself and fell limp onto the black floor sobbing.
As a daughter of Athena Annabeth had thought she’d be better at this. The fear landscape. The ultimate training. A few of the Athena kids had gotten together with Ares and created it. And of course, like a fool Annabeth had been the first to volunteer to go through it.
Who knew what that serum did? This was an experiment! How did she even know this was the true simulation? What if this were real?
Annabeth forced her abs to stop contracting and shut her eyes. Breathing in, breathing out she regulated her breath to calm her down. Real or not nothing would be gained by having a meltdown.
Slowly, Annabeth stood and dried her eyes. If this were real, she’d have to figure out how to find Percy. If this were a simulation, if the serum had worked, she’d have to show the program that she could conquer her fear.
It took all Annabeth was to turn her back on where Percy and walk away, but she did. Calmly and decisively, she strode away from the area, trusting the invisible path she walked on not to falter. Annabeth walked away.
And walked into Olympus. All of a sudden the overwhelming blackness disappeared and was replaced by the golden grandure of Mount Olympus. Annabeth breathed a deep sigh of relief. The serum had worked. This was a simulation. And she had beaten her fear.
But why was she in Olympus? Unless… her second fear took place here. Annabeth shuddered.
Another person stepped before her and Annabeth’s gaze traveled from the woman’s shoes to her face. Athena, goddess of wisdom. And Annabeth’s mother. Annabeth cringed.
“Hey, Mom,” she said as nonchalantly as she could.
“Do not address a goddess that way,” snapped Athena in return.
Annabeth gulped. “Alright, Mother.”
“Well that’s slightly better at least.” Athena rolled her eyes. “It’s a start.”
Annabeth’s mind gnawed on the situation and weighed it from all angles, all the while panicking internally. She didn’t exactly have the best relationship with her mother. She hadn’t realized that the fear of her mother was so deep-set as to be in her fear landscape, but she had known about it. If this was anything like her nightmares, the situation was about to get a lot worse, fast.
“Were you watching when I volunteered to use the fear simulation serum first?” asked Annabeth anxiously.
Athena was skeptical. “I was. You volunteered first. It is not wise to trust the shoddy workmanship of other demigods, particularly any of Ares. You have acted foolishly, daughter, and it may well cost you before the end.”
Annabeth was afraid of that. But a daughter of Athena doesn’t fall apart at a little bit of criticism. “You may be right,” she said, posture perfect and voice strong. Mount Olympus faded away, and Annabeth breathed a sigh of relief. That wasn’t too hard.
She stopped breathing entirely when she saw where she was. A dark, dank forest. Alone. With spider webs all around her. The webs were like four walls that locked Annabeth in place. Despite herself, Annabeth was able to keep her composure. That is, until she saw the actual spiders.
Big, black, and fuzzy. And a lot of them. They covered each of the four walls of web and stared at Annabeth with their many eyes. She couldn’t take it. Annabeth screamed.
“Get away, get away!” she screamed, making shooing motions with her hands but not being brave enough to move them forward very much. “Get out of here! Go! Please, go!” The spiders were not in a cooraporative mood.
Shaking, Annabeth crumpled to the forest floor, hugging her arms to her body and not willing to move from the center of her prison. She had to get past it, had to get past it. Get past it. Conquer it. How could she conquer this?!
Once again Annabeth forced her breathing to become regulated. Her heart still sped, but the breathing was a start. She had only one choice; dive deeper. And in the case of spiders, Annabeth knew what that meant. She would have to run into them. On purpose.
That’s what she had to do, and Annabeth knew it, but honest to Hades she wasn’t sure she could. Knowing what to do and not instantly doing it was a new and strange feeling for Annabeth, but no matter how much she tried to prepare herself for walking forward Annabeth’s legs refused to move. She was stuck.
Percy wasn’t scared of spiders. He’d be able to do this no problem. Annabeth pictured Percy standing on the other side of the webs, arms out and smiling slightly lopsided. She couldn’t help but smile back. In small, minuscule steps, Annabeth edged closer to the webs. And at the last second, she ran.
Right into… a school building? This one—Annabeth had no idea what was coming. A school building? She was afraid of school? No, she wasn’t though. As the professor began his lecture and all of the students tried their hardest not to fall asleep, Annabeth strained to hear him. She didn’t get it. What was going on?
Had the simulation malfunctioned? Was this not a simulation at all, but real? What was she supposed to do? With the spiders Annabeth had known what to do but hadn’t wanted to do it. Here she really wanted to do whatever came next, but had no idea what was going on. She started to sweat as she thought frantically.
Wait. Annabeth raised an eyebrow. There was one thing she knew she was afraid of. And it might not be the point of the simulation, assuming this was a real simulation, but maybe it was worth a shot. Annabeth feared not knowing. Not having all the answers. And right now she didn’t have any answers.
How could she beat that? It wasn’t like she could invent problems that she knew she wouldn’t be able to solve. That ruled out that whole option, leaving only one. If Annabeth could show the machine that her heart rate was regular and her breathing normal, the simulation would continue on. But considering her heart hadn’t gone down to normal since the first fear, Annabeth wasn’t so sure that would work either.
One, two, exhale, one, two, inhale, one, two… Annabeth chanted as she breathed. Minutes past and all she did was concentrate on breathing, trusting that her heart would settle down in time. The longer the wait, the more Annabeth was afraid this wasn’t the right answer, and the faster her heart rate wanted to go. More minutes of breathing. Fifteen minutes. A half hour. And, finally, her breathing and heart were registered as normal and Annabeth found herself being transported somewhere entirely different. A place she was very familiar with.
Camp Half-Blood. Only it didn’t look like it normally did. Camp Half-Blood was in flames. Annabeth’s mouth literally hung open in shock, too taken aback to react in any other way. What should she do? What should she do? What should she do?
Annabeth grabbed a bucket of water and tossed it on the Athena cabin, but if anything it only made the flames stronger. Demigods ran around in all directions, and as Annabeth followed them with her eyes, she realized what was going on. It was a Roman attack. The Romans were burning her only home.
The other demigods had the battle on check, but no one was fighting the fire. The Greeks were just letting the Romans burn their home. Annabeth ran from the well to the cabins to the well and back again, but no amount of water seemed to help. By the time Annabeth had given up trying, the Romans had one. They’d left. And no demigods, save her, had survived. Bodies of those Annabeth had the honor of calling friend lay dead all around her, and the buildings were all burned to the foundation.
She tried to stay strong. She really did. When she walked past Chiron, and Piper, and Leo, Annabeth shook with the strain of not reacting, but managed to still stay together. But when she found the body of Percy, lying close to the Athena cabin, clutching Riptide, Annabeth broke down completely. Before she’d thought that the half hour just breathing had been a long time, but now time seemed to mean nothing. Nothing meant anything anymore if all of this were real.
Annabeth cradled Percy’s head in her lap and sobbed onto him, only stopping for breath, and then not for long. Simulation or not Annabeth knew that things could never be the same after experiencing this.
But, she thought, wiping her eyes and sniffing hard. This was a simulation, if the Ares and Athena cabins had been right in their calculations. So if she could just get past this, she could wake up. It was all a dream. Only a dream.
Percy wasn’t really dead. He was probably in the room with her when she went under. He was probably still there now. Annabeth laid simulation-Percy’s head back on the scorched grass and rose shakily. “This is a simulation,” she said. “This is a simulation!” she repeated louder. Her calm confidence paid off despite her inward doubt. Annabeth woke up.
There was a hand clutching hers. “Annabeth?” asked Percy weakly.
“I’m back,” Annabeth assured.
Percy sighed. “You really had me there for a second, wise girl.”
Annabeth smiled. “It had me half the time, too, seaweed brain.”