I am sick of marriage. S-I-C-K! In the old days, I was the fastest mortal alive, and I manage to kill off many suitors that were trying to marry me. Then came Hippomenes, who threw golden apple whenever I pass in front of him. That is just unfair. Now, in the underworld, I was able to reclaim my body and snuck up into the upper world since Thanatos is chained.
Finally, my own flesh and blood. Now, I can train running again, and become the fastest runner ever! I'm sure that records all over the world had changed, but with training, I can be the fastest, just like the old times.
10 years later
This is fun. I have just competed in the female sprint 100m race, and apparently I had set out a new world record for both gender, reaching 100 meters in only 7 seconds. That is incredible, even faster then when I was alive a few thousand years ago.
And... many people tried to marry me ever since. I then told them that I will marry them only if they beat me in a 200m sprint race. Even the world's fastest man backed off. This is frustrating, so I added the lure of untold riches. They are interested. But what I didn't tell them is that if they lose, they have to die by my hand.
And so the race begins. As soon as the whistle blows, we all ran. I, of course, won the race, and then I brought the men inside the building and congratulate them.
Then, I told each and every runner to talk to me privately. I called the first runner, while holding a dagger behind me. I closed the door behind the other runners and once we're alone, I stabbed him in his abdomen.
I then hid the body inside the box, and called in another one. And so, the losers are killed. I was waiting for challenge, so I decided to take over the running stadium and use it as a grave for runners.
It was simple. I recruited some monsters to do my bidding (and yes I can see through the mist) and promised them some food and riches. They, of course, get what they are promised.
Over the last 3 days, the dreams are disturbing. I saw Atalanta, the fastest mortal in the world, was challenged by runners to compete in a 200 meters sprint race. The result, was astonishing. Atalanta's speed was amazing, and she reached the finish line, while the boys are lagging about 40 meters behind.
Then, Atalanta invited them inside the building and she said she's going to talk to them one by one. So, one by one, the male sprinter entered the room, and what I saw next is horrifying.
Atalanta actually kills them with a stab to the abdomen, and she kept doing the same with the other runners. Then, she proceeded to take over the stadium. My guess is that Atalanta is recruiting monsters to do her bidding. This turned out to be true, as I have heard that Atalanta is a clear-sighted mortal.
Anyways, it has been 1 or 2 months since I am in coma, and I got to admit that my barriers are reforming surprisingly fast. I have to thank Melody for this. She is the one that made it possible for me to reform the barriers much quicker than before, and I have faith that, some day, Melody will be able to put a permanent barrier inside me in order to prevent me from falling into a coma.
This is a major breakthrough, since my barriers are in 4/5 now, which is really great. I'm sure that Melody would improve that magic so that I could be only in a coma for 1 day and my barrier would be instantly healed to 5/5.
"Yearrgh!" I am lifting weights inside my cabin. I got to admit this is heavy. I already put an extra 2500 tons on this weight, and it feels like I'm back in the old days when I am helping my father, and hence why I am this strong.
I tried one hand lift, and apparently it felt heavier than before, but I was able to hold it. Then, I transfer it to my other hand, and after a few minutes, I gently dropped the huge celestial bronze weight and stretched my arms. I continued working out until I was tired. Then, I made my way to Hyperion's cabin.
As I entered Hyperion's cabin, the first thing I look is at the clock in the cabin, which read 15:00. I looked at Josh, and judging by his snore, he is in a coma. I didn't blame him. This guy has been long since he had done his coma, and I'm assuming that Josh will be better in a few years time. Besides, that's how long Josh usually does his coma anyways.
As I approached Josh, I looked at his sleeping features. He has a cute round face with golden hair, which some of them is dangling down his forehead.
A few weeks ago, I had taken him to my cabin for a haircut. I'm sure that Josh would like the haircut I've given him.
Anyways, I looked at his eyes that are closed, his lips that move about as he snores. His Camp Half-Blood T-shirt that he is wearing, and short pants. He looks just like sleeping beauty when he sleeps, but the only difference sleeping beauty is a girl, and Josh is a boy. Actually, I rather give Josh a nickname, sleeping handsome. There, that's better.
As I watched, his sleepy eyes fluttered, and he opened his eyes. This is weird. I always knew that Josh went on a coma for months and years at a time. This is just 1 or 2 months. Something is not right.
Josh was jolted in surprise and he shot up and said, "Atalanta!!!"
That shocked me, because I never heard of the name Atalanta, other than the fact that she is the fastest mortal in the history of Ancient Greece.
I immediately turned on the lights. "Josh! You had a nightmare."
I stared at him with my eyes wide. He just woke up! Over the past few years, I've watched Josh in a coma for months or maybe years. This stunned me. That is the shortest coma I've ever seen!
"Yes.." Josh shivered. "And it's not good."
From the looks of Josh's shiver, I could tell that something isn't right.
"What is it?" I asked him.
Josh rubbed his eyes. "It's about Atalanta, the fastest mortal in the history of Ancient Greece. She's back from the dead, and she is even faster than ever! This time, she is holding this event called 'Sprint to Win!' event, but they have to beat Atalanta, which they will never do. If they lost, they will be killed."
I stared at him with my eyes wide. Surely, I haven't heard of that dream yet, but I'm sure that Josh is telling the truth, since in his coma, he has been getting dreams constantly, and apparently Josh described it quite well, so I have to take his word for it.
Josh tried to get up, but apparently his legs had turned to jelly from the length of the coma. His legs wobbled, and he almost fell to the ground, had I not caught him.
I held his arms up like a ragdoll, and slowly, Josh took a step forward. As soon as I let go of his arms, he fell down again. Josh then proceeded to crawl outside, but there's another problem for him. The door handle is too high for him to reach, and it's funny to watch him try with no success. I giggled, and held his back.
"Josh, you should probably go back to sleep." I told him, lifting him back to the bed.
Josh apparently refuses to go back to sleep, saying that he has already enough barriers for him to keep awake.
I am done with the Magic Practice session. I had just taught Stella how to do basic darkness magic without using her powers. This allows Stella to conserve her magic.
Anyways, I'm heading to Hyperion's cabin, while Stella is heading to Nyx's cabin. As I opened the door, I was stunned because Josh, my father, is awake. Mary was standing beside Josh. Josh has been in a coma for only 2 months, and yet he is awake? This is amazing. Apparently, my magic amulet that I had placed on him had worked far better then I had hoped. I was expecting that Josh would come out of his coma in about 6 months, but it turns out that Josh's coma is only 2 months.
But wait..... I stepped closer to Josh, and apparently he only reaches his 4/5 barrier. Something had woken him up, and I must assume that it's a dream, a nightmare.
"Father, how was your coma?" I asked him.
Josh looked at me with blank expression, and suddenly fear and made an attempt to back away from me, but since his legs and arms were still weak, it's not successful.
"Terrible." Josh murmured. "Atalanta, she's.... back." Josh fell to his knees, putting his arms in front of him but that too wobbles and gave way, so I grabbed him in order to prevent him from falling face first to the floor.
"Father, we should walk around, just like we did when you're out of your coma." I told him.
Josh nodded, and I helped him up, and as he began to walk, his legs wobbles, which reminded me when he is holding the sky. The difference is that he hasn't used his legs for two months and that pretty much paralysed his muscles so he needs a couple of days of recovery.
I brought him outside his cabin, and he looked at the setting sun. Then, I walked him around the cabins, and the big house. Josh kept walking while Me and Mary were beside him, me holding his shoulder upright from behind and slowly and gently letting him walk independently so that he can recover quicker, but too much of a thing isn't good, because when I abruptly let go of Josh, he instanty buckled and I quickly hauled him to his feet again so that he won't fall down.
I continued to help him walk, decreasing the amount of help that I gave him each time, until he was able to walk by himself. I looked at the clock in the dining pavilion. It's already 18:30, which means it's time to eat dinner. Josh tried to walk by himself, but occassionally fell since his legs are still wobbly. Josh managed a step, then another, and finally we got to the dining pavilion.
In the dining pavilion, there's a couple of new furnitures. There's a cockoo clock hanging on the top wall beside the dishes, there's also a medallion that commemorates the war we have been through, and a trophy full of pictures, denoting that we're a happy team of campers that is willing to stand side by side through thick and thin.
I looked inside the photo, and there's a picture of me as a baby. Josh was taking care of me. Ohh... good happy times. I flicked through the photos and I found out that when Jessica was having me, my poor father was tortured by Nadine for 3 months straight. No wonder he had a fear of Nadine so much. But the good thing is that he has managed to overcome his fear, but I had the feeling that Josh's fear might return sooner or later.
There's one where I did my rituals in order to regain my magic, and one where I no longer need the rituals to regain my magic since I had developed magic that gets stronger when I kept training with it.
Anyways, Me and Josh sat in Hyperion's table, getting a steak burger from the mess hall and returns to my table. Josh tried to get up to get his own food but I stopped him.
"Father, I'll get the food for you, okay?"
Josh nodded, and I went to the mess hall to get Josh some burgers, his favorite meal. It has been since he got to Camp Half-Blood. I brought him two burgers and settled them in front of him.
I began to eat my steak burger, and it tastes really nice. Since I was about 8 years old, I began to like steak. Now, I have lost track of time since the McLean family has been hit by a mysterious curse that prevented us from aging. Now, I've met Josh's mom, Isa McLean, and she still looks in her 30s. The last time I met her is near Empire State Building. This is weird. Perhaps it has something to do with Atalanta, the female that Josh had described to me. Perhaps we have to complete this quest in order to resume our aging. But then, we don't know what the gods will do.
Josh began to eat his burger, and nibbles on the bread first. Then, he proceeded to eat the meat. That gave Josh strength, since he really used his arms to grab the burger whole and eat it. Unfortunately, it dropped, but lucky for him it dropped onto his plate.
After I finished eating my steak burger, I helped Josh to eat his burger. Josh just opened his mouth as I put the burger into his mouth for him to bite. Josh took a bite, his eyes still sleepy and is desperately trying to keep his eyes open. I gave Josh the burger and he grabs it with his hands and Josh surprisingly held it in place. Josh very slowly brought the burger into his mouth and took a bite.
After about 4 minutes, he finished his first burger, then I decided to take the other one for later, wrapped the other burger with a plastic wrap and brought Josh to Hyperion's cabin.
Josh was able to stand, but walking seems to be a problem for him. He was able to walk one step at a time, and occasionally stumbles, but I was on his side so I can catch him when he falls down.
I glanced back, and Mary was eating a fine steak on her table by herself. Apparently, she had grabbed a whole plate of steak and ate it piece by piece. The other campers are annoyed. I hope Chiron will order more steak for Mary so that Mary did not starve to death.
I turned my attention at Josh, and keep guiding him. It took a whole 30 minutes for Josh to walk from the dining pavilion to his cabin.
I had just ate an entire plate of steak, and I got to tell you it's not enough. I've been growing stronger and taller, and yet I need to have a greater food supply to fulfill my needs.
I went to my cabin, and went to the freezer that stores a couple of dead cows.
Yes, I have been hunting. The food in the camp does not provide enough nutrients for me. I have been secretly hunting in the night, going out of camp and to the woods. I know there's monsters. I took care of the monsters easily and my main goal is to find cows. Finding them is not easy. I cannot find them everytime I went hunting. Only about 25% of my hunt is successful in bringing down cows. I made the most efficient steak out of it, extracting meat from their legs, butt, back, and many different parts. This process is very difficult as I should not damage the internal organs as the internal organs may contain some fluid such as urea that will contaminate the meat, making it uneatable. I learned my lesson at my second kill to never stab them in its stomach. It was one of the normal cows that provide me with enough nutrients that is enough for 2 meals, that is, with three to four steaks from the dining pavilion on each meal. The last time I hunt was yesterday, where I hunt in daytime in the woods. There's an entrance right behind my cabin and it's facing away from the other cabins and other camp structures, so I can go hunting and back again without ever being detected.
I grabbed a couple of the cows, and I got to admit that I am an efficient hunter. I preserve most of its meat while carefully removing the internal organs and store them in a freezer underground.
I cut the cows largest part, which is its butt and its stomach and I began to cut the meat into equal parts and made sure that it's thin enough to be cooked as quick as possible, but thick enough so it wouldn't get burnt when I was cooking it. I began to cook the meat properly. Cooking meat improperly could cause disease such as salmonella. I was cooking in a frying pan, so it would take a while for the meat to cook up fully.
I waited, and after about 1 minute, I turned the steak on its back, and after another minute, I turned it back again, and after 40 minutes, I looked at the steak and cut the side, and saw there's no red parts on the steak, which indicates that the steak is now fully cooked, and I placed it on a big plate that I usually ate, about 5 times larger than the average plates.
I began to eat. It was delicious, more delicious that the steak in Chiron's steak. I looked at the clock. It says 19:50. I continued to enjoy my steak, which was this cow's butt and stomach (not its contents) and after 20 minutes, I was relieved because the steak was enough for me since I had devoured the entire plate back in dining pavilion. Usually, it would take the entire cow for me to be enough, but for now it's enough.
I went to the weights section and it was there, the huge bronze ball is still there. But before I lift some weights, I should do pushups. I got down and do some 100 pushups in 3 minutes. Then, I got up again and decided to lift some weights.
I should build a support system for this 3000 tons of huge bronze ball, but it's going to take a lot of work, and I don't want anyone to know that I have been working out on this bronze ball because I'm afraid that people are going to try it and ended up getting crushed themselves.
Anyways, since the last month, my cabin has been upgraded. It is now 12 meters tall, and it's a square cabin with lengths on each side of about 75 meters, which is so very big. That is why I got all these huge cooking materials, large refrigeration room, forge that the Hephaestus cabin had built in 3 weeks, all sort of training that a daughter of Atlas should have, such as strength training. I also got a huge bed.
I approached the 3000 tons weight and lift it. I used all of my strength to lift this one. It's hard, and tiring. I decided to see how long I can hold this thing. Even lifting it for 2 minutes makes me sweat already.
I gently dropped it and put it back onto the hole in the ground. I decided to go to the archery range for target practicing. I grabbed my bow and arrows and headed to the archery range.
"Josh, it's good to see you out of your coma so quickly." I was clearly excited, because the magic that I had put on him clearly works. This is one of my happiest moment to see my father was recovering much quicker than before. There's one thing that I want to settle, and it's about agelessness. Apparently, with Atalanta's return, everyone on Camp Half-Blood was turned into when they are 15 years old. In order to cure it, we have to beat Atalanta on footrace, and send her back to the underworld.
But however, Atalanta isn't here in New York. She's in London, at the olympic games, running a sprinting competition illegally. No one knows how Atalanta can gain access to the olympic games, but we have to stop her.
Actually, I have a good theory for this. Atalanta might be set free by Nadine, but then again, Nadine is trapped under the sky, unless someone replaces her, which is very unlikely.
I don't want to tell father about my theory, because I don't want to make him panic again. Sure Josh have conquered his fear of Nadine, but when I talked to him earlier about Nadine, he seemed troubled, like there's something still bothering Josh about Nadine. But nevertheless, he has to overcome it sooner or later or else he would cower each time he sees Nadine.
"Father, you shouldn't be afraid of Nadine." I told him. "Nadine might have tortured you a couple of times, but that's not a reason to give up. You have to conquer your fear."
Josh looked pale. Hearing the word 'Nadine' is enough to send him into a shock. This is strange. On the war of The Sinister Four, Josh had been okay dealing with Nadine. Now, Josh is transformed into a boy that is afraid of Nadine.
Maybe it's because Josh was thinking of the time he was kidnapped the first time by Nadine for 3 months straight, and none of his friends rescued him. I could feel Josh was very sad at that time, very lonely, very terrified, and he looks like a child that is scared of the dark.
"You don't know what Nadine did to me, Melody." Josh began, as tears streaming down his cheeks. "She did.... these..." Josh said as he pointed at his calf, and he began to strip his shirt
I could see nothing with my naked eye, but with the help of the magic time enhancement, I could see when and where Nadine did tortured him, and with what, and what kind of damage it did to Josh. Seeing Josh's, it was terribly awful. I never see anyone tortured like that. But then again, he had courage to go against Nadine 2 months before.
"But you have the courage to stand up against her 2 months ago. I'm sure that you can stand up to her again. I will help you."
"2 months ago, I must have forgotten my first contact with Nadine. Now I remember!" Josh began to cry, but I could tell he is trying profusely to stop crying. Josh put his shirt back on. "Her torture was.... relentless."
"I understand, Joshy." I told him. "But you must have faith, father. Besides, Nadine is trapped under the sky, remember?"
That seemed to lighten Josh's expression. Josh began to stop crying slowly, and he put his head on my shoulder. I held his head.
"Don't worry." I soothed my voice, almost like charmspeak. "Nadine won't touch you again. But if she ever did touch you again, I promise I will send her to the deepest depths of tartarus."
Ohh... I must have forgotten to introduce my newest ability. It's charmspeak. Yes, it's what some children of Aphrodite have. I just realized that I have that power a few weeks ago, where I accidentally charmspoke Chiron into throwing some of the dishes into the lava pit. Then, I had to retrieve it, and I managed to retrieve it by low energy plasma retriever.
Josh began to smile, and hugged me tightly. I can't believe how big my father has grown. It seems like that I am his mother.
I'm sure that Josh will get rid of his Nadine phobia sooner or later. Right now, we have to focus on the current matter. I feel a yawn and is ready to go to sleep.
"I'll be sleeping, Father." I told Josh.
Josh nodded, and then I closed my eyees and went to sleep.
Nadine has escaped. I could not see it in my dreams, but I can sense it. I was very frightened that she will torture me again. With that thought, I don't think I can ever sleep again. I would always on the lookout for Nadine Safana La Muerte, even in my cabin.
This paranoia is making me solitary, not able to go outside, even out of my own cabin at night time, because I am afraid that in the night, I would be exposed to Nadine's attack.
This is just ridiculous, my logic says. Why would Nadine continue kidnapping me when she knows that she will lose in the end?
I decided to take no chances and go outside, even though it's already 21:55, 5 minutes before curfew, to get some fresh air. I managed to get some fresh air and quietly walk around my cabin, but after 5 minutes, I went back to my cabin quickly and closed the door behind me, panting heavily. I was beginning to feel Nadine's presence outside this cabin, and I don't want to risk getting captured again, so I assume the sleeping position, while keeping my left eye open, and my right one closed. Then, I began to switch after a couple of seconds. I kept doing this until about 5 minutes until I was able to fully close my eyes.
Dreams found me again, and it's Atalanta again. She had won so many footrace events and she was killing off more runners. Apparently, she got bored in London, so, from the bodies that she had killed, she scavenge them for money and cash to go to her next destination.
The dream changed, and apparently it's Atalanta again, and this time I was looking in Mount Othrys. Nadine is still holding the sky. Phew, actually it was my fear that is playing tricks on me. Then, there stood Atalanta, and she was running past Mount Othrys, and just a few kilometers away, Atalanta apparently have found a good spot for her to make an arena, since the forest is vast. Now, she needs to find a tool for clearing up the land, and I was surprised that when she found a couple of mortals that were cutting the trees using chainsaws, Atalanta manipulated the mist into making the men working for her.
The men went to her.
"Good job, gentlemen." Atalanta said. "Now, we should cut the trees quickly, and make a brand new running tracks! If you succeed cutting all the trees before next sundown, your payment will be doubled."
"Sweet! Nice!" The 5 workers cheered.
"But, if you don't complete your work until the next two days, you're fired." Atalanta told them.
Apparently, that reinvigorates the workers so that the workers do its job much quicker.
Then the scene changes to Nadine still holding the sky. I sighed in relief in my dream, and Nadine apparently saw me and looked at me in hatred.
I know that Nadine was just glaring at random directions, since after her short glare at me, she turned to glare at another spots without even saying a word. I just hoped that Atalanta won't accidentally release her or any of the participants.
The scene moves forward until I can see the 5 workers working on cutting the trees down quickly and meticulously. This pleases Atalanta, since she wants the stadium to be built in two days time.
I could see in the distant, two lookout towers a few kilometers away is present. It's probably Camp Jupiter.
The fact that it was built just a few kilometers away from Mount Othrys gives rise to my suspicions. Is Atalanta going to use it to kill off losers?
Wait... if Atalanta is going to use it, then..... OH NO!!! Nadine is going to be free!
This is my worst nightmare. Atalanta must have not know about the one under the sky is no longer Atlas. If any of the contestants are going to be trapped under there....
But wait... I remember once my mother told me that the sky will instantly crush mortals, so Nadine would remain there. But the big problem is its location where it forms an equilateral triangle between Mount Othrys, Camp Jupiter, and the stadium. As I viewed from above, it made a good equilateral triangle.
The scene changed into Camp Jupiter. Reyna was looking at the people in the lookout towers, and the lookout people reported back to her in alarm.
"Reyna, you should see this." One of the guards said.
Reyna climbed into the lookout tower and peered over the lookout telescope. What she saw was a bunch of mortals cutting down trees in an oval shape over a half mile long and about a half mile wide.
"This is getting suspicious." Reyna said. "Centurions!"
The centurions armed with javelins arrived.
"I want you to go scout to the far east of Camp Jupiter, 2 kilometers away. There have been reported of suspicious activity in that site." Reyna ordered.
"Yes, ma'am." The centurions salute her and went out of the camp to go scouting.
Just before I was beginning to get any more scenes, the dream faded to black.
I woke up in relief, because Nadine turned out to be still stuck under the sky, but at the same time I was worried because Atalanta is going to use the sky to easily kill the losers.