Chapter 11: Helping Death Isn't a Picnic

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WARNING: This chapter contains fluff (you're welcome :D)

Nico walked into the main house right after Katie did, trailing behind. He looked around the room to see Percy and Rachel there. He could hear them slightly bickering, words like "Entrance" and "Labyrinth" floating around the room as they talked. Nico couldn't help but admire the way Percy stood his ground against that crazy redhead. If a random person walked in, he/she wouldn't think that Percy is the biggest Kelphead you could find.

Walking up to them, Nico stopped beside Percy. "What's going on?"

Percy stopped and looked at Nico with an unreadable expression in his sea-green eyes. Without warning, he grabbed Nico and pulled him into a bone-crushing hug, squeezing the air out of the younger demigod and turning Nico bright red.

Nico felt like he died and went to the Isles of the Bless. Never had he been so close to his crush. Never. The feeling of Percy's stong arms around him felt so perfect, so right. A feeling of utter bliss lifted up his stress and pain, making the painful emotions and thoughts disappear as if they were never there. He wanted to say like this forever, wrapped in Percy's embrace.

But his idiotic self had to speak up. "Um . . . Percy?"

"Yeah," Percy said, his voice muffled in Nico's dark hair. He didn't move, keeping Nico trapped in his bear hug.

"What are you doing?"

Percy's eyes widened as if he just realized he had hugged the son of Hades, who may or may not kill people for touching him. "Oh!" As the son of Posideon's arms withdrew, Nico felt like punching himself, for he had been enjoying Percy's closeness. But tell anyone and Nico will deny it.

The older demigod rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly with his hand. "Um . . . well . . ."

The demon part of him took over. "You better have a good reason." he growled. Nobody, I mean nobody touches the son of Hades, not even with a brush of the fingertips on his hands.

Percy cut the chase and answered him. "I had this dream. You were all alone in Tartarus and were being chased by Kronos."

Nico swallowed, remebering that very clearly.

"He had been yelling some things Nico, some really bad things. He kept saying how you were worthless and pathetic. He said you weren't worthy to be a son of Hades." Percy said.

A lump formed in Nico's throat. Kronos was right of course. He wasn't worthy of being the son of Hades.

"I watched you fall Nico. When you realized you couldn't outrun him, you stood your ground and fought him. Even with your leg in bad shape, you managed to hold him off before the rest got you."

Nico wanted him to stop. "I know what happened, Percy, you don't need to rub it in my face!" he growled.

Percy looked at him with shock. "What I had dreamed happened?"

"Yes, so shut it." Nico ordered, glaring at the older demigod.

"Oh my gods." Percy whispered. "It can't be."

Nico was getting seriously annoyed with him. "Well it happened, ok? It's over and in the past. So STOP MAKING ME RELIVE IT!" he roared. The shadows in the house became prominent and the floor started shaking.

But then Percy did something that shocked Nico: he hugged him again. With a stern voice, Percy said "Don't you ever think you're alone, you hear me? We're all here for you."

Although touched by his caring words, Nico complained, "Percy, get off me!"

He started wriggling, trying get away. He had to fight his teenager girly girl side from squealing: "OH MY GODS PERCY JACKSON JUST HUGGED ME AGAIN!" Nico had a strange urge to start dancing and punch Percy at the same time.

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