Chapter Ten

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A/N The beginning of this chapter isn't the best but not every one will be like this. It's just something I added in there. Keep reading, it gets better.

Annabeth

  Annabeth could practically feel the excitement and hope radiating off Percy. It was a nice change.

  After lots of begging, glaring, and argument, Will had agreed Percy could do a sort of physical therapy thing. The Seven would do it and Will would check on him at times.

  Today, they were going to try it out for the first time. It would be simple. All they were going to do is have him move around a bit. As much as he could.  

  Jason and Annabeth sat with Percy now, about to start.  "Alright, Perce," Jason said, "show us how much you can move your arms."

  Percy nodded and moved his arms very slowly before putting one hand on Annabeth's arm and cringing slightly. She smiled reassuringly.

  "Good," Jason said. Percy shot him a look.
  "I barely moved them," he said, looking as if his hope was demolished. But Annabeth swore she saw a little fiery determination in his eyes.
  "You still moved."
  "You sound like Annabeth."
  "Annabeth is amazingly smart, so how is that a bad thing?"
  "I never said it was."
  "Alright," Annabeth cut in, "will you idiots shut up so we can continue?" The boys smiled sheepishly, although Percy winced.

  "Okay, Seaweed Brain," Annabeth said, "can you move your legs?"
  "I haven't tired."
  "Then it's time you did." 

Percy's toes twitched slightly. His lips pursed. His ankles jerked. His eyes watered. His knees shifted. He bit his lips so hard it bled. 

  "Stop," Annabeth said, trying hard to keep her voice from cracking. She hates to see him in pain. It brought back bad memories.

  She took a few deep breaths. "That's enough for now," she said.
  "Can you move your... Uh, I don't know, shoulders?" Jason murmured.

  Percy blinked multiple times before he attempted to roll his shoulders. Key word, attempted.

  The minute his shoulders twitched his eyes widen and he gasped. Annabeth was on her feet immediately.

  She knew what the problem was within seconds. Under his orange CHB shirt, a white and red line was clearly peeking out from the hem.

  It was a scar. Not uncommon. But this one was from Tartarus. It was still healing. He had been extra mad that day. 

  Annabeth remembered it clearly. "Annabeth!" Jason screamed her name. She got jolted back to reality. For once Jason, she thought, you had perfect timing. She DID NOT want a flashback now. The less the better.

  Percy's eyes began to fog over. "No!" She screamed, grabbing his hand. "No," she repeated more softly. "Look at me Perce. Fight it Seaweed Brain."

  But it was too late, his eyes had already rolled to the back of his head.

(A/N I was going to stop it here but hey, why not?)

  Annabeth sat back down, knowing there was nothing she could do. She grabbed his hand and rubbed soothing circles into his skin.

  Jason sighed loudly. "I really hate seeing him like this," he muttered. Annabeth nodded slightly, tears in her eyes. "He shouldn't have to go through this. He shouldn't have to relive this."

  Annabeth could feel Jason's eyes on her. Blue met grey. He could only imagine how shattered and desperate she looked. But she'd stopped caring long ago.

  "He was tortured," Jason stated. Annabeth gulped before replying, "Took you long enough," her voice dripped with sarcasm.
  "I think we've known for awhile. We just didn't want to believe it."

  A moment of silence passed between them. Annabeth looked back at Percy and saw his hair sticking to his head due to sweat. His hand shook in hers and his face was contorted into fear. She closed her eyes and looked away again.

  "What about you?" Jason asked suddenly.
  "No," she said in a small voice, "no I-I wasn't... You know. I just had to watch."
  "So you were," Jason said, "Emotionally."
  "So was he," she muttered sadly, "emotionally and physically. And he did the emotionally to himself."  She added the last part under her breath. Percy cared so much about her. It hurt her to see him hurting. But it hurt him to see her hurting. So really, in a way, they made the situation worse.

  Jason opened his mouth to say something when he was interrupted by a sharp gasp. Both blonde heads shot to Percy who was wide awake and terrified.

  He was gasping for air. Annabeth cursed in Greek. "The air mask," she hissed. How could she be so stupid?

  She snatched the mask from the desk and approached Percy. His eyes became wider and he shook his head rapidly.

  "Shh," Annabeth said tentatively, "it's me. Not him. Me... This," she indicated to the mask, "will help you breath. Help. Not hurt." 

  His breaths were ragged and uneven. He looked shell shocked and horrified. Annabeth needed to help him. But she knew what he saw, and it was not pretty.

  Think Annabeth, she said to herself, what can you use. The answer came abruptly. Logic.

  "Look at your shoulder Percy," she whispered. "It's closed. There's no knife."  Annabeth clenched her fists at the memory. Tartarus left the knife (which was recently made and burning hot) sticking out of his shoulder for two days before he finally took it out.

  Percy glanced at his shoulder, though he kept his head in Annabeth's direction. He hadn't even noticed Jason sitting curled up the corner, watching in horror.

  Percy looked confused and Annabeth used this as her opportunity. She felt horrible afterward, for taking advantage of him. But his breaths were becoming more labored and she didn't want him dying from lack of air.

  She slipped the mask over his head and turned on the machine. Percy looked at her in bewilderment. Annabeth sighed in relief. Bewilderment was better than fear 

  She took her seat and sent Jason a look that clearly said stay there, he's not ready for you.  "Shhhhhh," she cooed, "your okay. Your safe here. He's gone. He won't find you. He won't touch you. He is still trapped in his own pit," she spat the last part.

  Out of the corner of her eye, Annabeth saw Jason's hand fly to his mouth to keep from gasping. Looks like he completed the puzzle, Annabeth thought. Jason probably thought some old enemy was the one who hurt Percy. Not the primordial himself.

  After Percy realized where he was and that Annabeth was with him, he started sobbing. Loud and hard. Jason looked like he'd seen a ghost and slipped out the door in shock.

  Even Annabeth was a little shocked, though she got over it quickly. Percy never cried. The last time he cried was when....

  Annabeth acted quickly. She folded Percy in her arms and let him sob onto her shoulder.

A/N 1,171 words

Disclaimer: PJO and HoO characters belong to Rick Riordan. Not me.

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