Chapter 27 - CRUELEST TYPE

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Percy and his mom were out of town again. Annabeth hadn't wished to stay in the apartment alone with Paul Blofis. It was less that she didn't trust him, and more she didn't trust guys at all... She trusted Percy, but only Percy. She felt bad admitting that she didn't trust Percy's step-father, but all three of them understood. Percy, Sally, even Paul did. Percy had kissed her goodbye outside her apartment, promising to be back within the week.

Annabeth learned that her step mom, although she loved Annabeth's father, was divorcing him on the terms of what he did to Annabeth's mother. 

"Stealing a woman's child from her when you don't even care about the child." She'd said. "It's the cruelest type of undeserved punishment."

Today, in history, Mr Pluto stood at the front of the room, a cool smile on his pale face.

"Turn to page 394." He said it in a slow, drawling voice, one similar to that of a very well known character from Harry Potter, one that had said that line numerous times. Annabeth bit back a grin. The teacher was eyeing the book on her desk - Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

It made her feel better after nearly getting a broken arm in Gym. They'd played football and someone had barreled into her like a train. 

When class ended, Mr Pluto had her stay behind. It made her nervous. Mr Pluto had never done anything against her, and though he could be creepy sometimes, she knew he wouldn't do anything to her. He was a respectable man who knew his own, as well as other people's limits. "Miss Chase. I heard about a predicament at home... With your father?"

Annabeth swallowed and nodded. "Yeah. I mean, I guess a predicament is one way to explain it." She whispered. The teacher nodded, frowning. He pursed his lips together into a small line, sitting on the edge of his desk. "We have been having some issues, I guess."

"Like what?"

"I found out that my mom didn't actually... Die... When I was little... He got angry when I mentioned it, and chased me out of the house..." Mr Pluto frowned.

"Where have you been staying, then?"

"My boyfriend, Percy Jackson, and his mom let me stay in his apartment." Annabeth shrugged.

"Where are you staying tonight? Surely you won't be staying in Mr Jackson's apartment today? If he is not here...?" His ever-so slight British accent became a little more obvious upon his worried tone.

"I was intending on going home. My step-mother is there. He won't try anything if she's with me." Annabeth was certain of it. Over the last week and a half, her step-mom had explained her reasoning for her behavior. She said that Annabeth's father had always told her that Annabeth truthfully was the reason for her mother's death. Except, Annabeth was told her mother drove off a cliff. Helen was told that Athena Chase had attempted throwing Annabeth off the cliff and fell to her death instead, that somehow, Annabeth had survived, though Athena had not. She even admitted to feeling stupid for believing it. Annabeth shook it off, telling her that it was fine - Even if her heart still stung a little from so many years of mental abuse and neglect.

"Alright, well... If you need anything, e-mail me. I'll be happy to help you." He sighed. "I promise."

"Thank you, Mr Pluto." Annabeth nodded in thanks. "I really should head home, though."

"Alright. When you see Mr Jackson again, tell him I said hello, and wish the best for the family member he's off to see."

Annabeth nodded. "I will."

Mr Pluto smiled and waved towards the door. Once she'd been dismissed, Annabeth relaxed, breathing in a sigh of relief. She left the room and made her way out of the school, avoiding all eyes. She was sure a rumor had spread already about Annabeth staying behind to talk to him.

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