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Lexi had never been so grateful to see the gates of Olympus. For the duration of the chariot ride, Hecate reacquainted Lexi with her interpretation of the silent treatment, and Lexi spent the entire journey wondering what had set Hecate off. Did she blame Lexi for putting those ideas into Ink and Lisbon's heads? Was Hecate that opposed to having other gods make their home in the underworld, or was it something else completely?

It wasn't until Heracles greeted them with his handsome smile and warm welcome that Hecate exercised her vocal chords, taking his arm and engaging him in conversation while Lexi pretended to be entertained by their banter. Heracles appeared oblivious to Hecate's snub of Lexi, and it wasn't long before Lexi was making her own way through the palace. Odessa had agreed to meet Lexi in the reception room so they could walk into the meeting together, but it was Poseidon's commanding form Lexi noticed first as he stood next to Odessa in his blood red robe. Lexi hated those robes, and she was grateful it was only the males who chose to dress that way.

Lexi and Odessa embraced, and Lexi allowed Poseidon to kiss her hand, after which she offered him a playful warning. "You better be careful, Poseidon. You're fraternizing with the enemy, you know."

"If I were afraid of making enemies, there would not be so many who wish to see my head on a spike."

Odessa fluttered her hand against her chest as she gasped. "Don't say such horrible things about yourself, Poseidon. You'll give me nightmares."

Poseidon reached out and touched Odessa's cheek as his eyes twinkled. "I never want to be part of your nightmares, unless I am the one slaying the monsters that haunt you."

Lexi willed herself not to roll her eyes. "Do you have the revised agenda, Odessa? I want to be sure we're on the same page."

As Lexi pulled a scroll from her pocket, Odessa did the same. "I believe my page is the same as your page, unless you made changes since last we spoke."

Lexi smiled at Odessa's literal interpretation of a mortal euphemism. Odessa had seen very little of the outside world, which was true for many of the gods, but Lexi was hoping to change that. The bell rang to call the council members together, and the three of them walked through the expansive hallway, chatting pleasantly. It wasn't until Lexi entered the meeting room and saw her father's face that her mood darkened. Zeus appeared to have the same reaction when he caught Lexi's gaze, but rather than ignore her as Hecate chose to, he strode toward her with grim determination.

"I understand you and Hades are still harboring fugitives," he said by way of a greeting.

Although Lexi considered his recent behavior not becoming of a benevolent leader, she chose to respond graciously. Provoking him never got her anywhere. "Ink and Lisbon are still in the underworld, if that's who you're referring to."

"Of course, I am. In my mind, they are fugitives, and you and Hades are guilty of aiding and abetting." He scowled like only Zeus knew how, and when Poseidon arrived to stand beside Lexi, his scowl lightened, but only slightly. "Good day, brother. I expect you are aware that your son is still at large."

"I hear that Ink and Lisbon have become enamored with each other and are making impulsive decisions in an attempt to secure their future. You and I have been guilty of the same."

The two gods regarded each other with intense stares until Ares strolled by, bringing them back to the present with his version of dry wit. "The natives are getting restless."

They turned to face the table of gods, who were all seated, their attention focused impatiently on Zeus. He held up his hand to acknowledge the gods as he leaned in to whisper in Lexi's ear.

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