A loud crash sounded from beside him. He couldn't move his arms, he couldn't feel his legs, and a weird feeling was in his chest. Not quite pain, just an... Emptiness. He was awake, but he knew he wasn't alive. He had seen his body. He'd heard the call of the judges, but they were too far away to judge his soul.
And then he woke up in the middle of organized clutter. The god of blacksmiths Hephaestus worked diligently on something, oblivious to the demigod son of Poseidon waking up. Not that Percy could do too much to notify that he was conscious. His throat was dry, and it hurt to swallow. Hours had passed before the god finally finished what he was working on and went over to Percy.
Percy looked at the misshapen god who had a glittering metal... Arm? He grabbed a few wires and after a while Percy could feel his arm. It was just pain, but Percy was glad he could feel it.
Percy raised his arm and saw that it was the metal arm, and he didn't have to look, he knew. But he wanted to ask for clarification.
Percy opened his mouth, but only an airy sound came out.
"Don't try to speak. I haven't repaired your voice, nor your neck for that matter." Percy raised his new arm and touched his neck. He couldn't feel any pain, and his sense of touch wasn't really there, but he could feel the thin but deep cut going along his throat.
And reality suddenly hit Percy. They... killed him.
Holding the infant son of Apollo brought memories to Clockwork that he had wished he had forgotten.
A little bundle wiggled in the crib. "Hi Kenny." Percy said, picking his son up and cradling the baby close to his chest. "Achoo!" The baby babble fondly.
The blond and blue eyed baby flashed a toothless grin, and Clockwork snapped out of it as he stepped through the camp's bounderies. His name was Four. The day before, he had found Eight, Ten, and Seven. All girls. That left One, Two, Three, Five, Six, Nine, Eleven, Twelve, Thirteen, Fifteen, Sixteen, Seventeen, and Twenty.
Percy went into the big house, and was met with only Chiron. The Centaur looked at him, to the infant in his arms. Percy held up the number 4, and Chiron nodded. "That leaves how many now? Thirteen children left unfound?" Percy nodded gravely.
"I take it you're leaving now?" Percy nodded, but stayed rooted in place, knowing Chiron had something to ask. "I have something to ask of you..." Chiron started.
Percy patiently waited for him to continue. "Twenty... I know you plan on looking for him anyway... But I have reason to believe that Twenty is a young man named Kenneth Jackson." And for a moment, Percy began to freeze up. His makeshift heart stopped pumping oil to keep the gears moving, but Chiron didn't seem to notice. I'm not sure if you know of this, but his father went missing six years ago, Kenneth disappearing only a year later. His father was a son of Poseidon, and he was... A great person before he was a hero. I don't know where he is or if he is alive, but I promised him to protect Kenneth long ago, and I broke that promise. If there's a chance..."
The old Centaur's voice cracked, and Percy's makeshift heart slowly began beating. Once, Twice, Three times, before resuming its normal tempo.
Percy knew he could not drop everything to go look for Kenneth. His son. But Chiron knew it too. The look in his eyes showed he knew. Percy nodded to his former teacher, handing the sleeping son of Apollo over to him. "And, satyr, I have to ask... Does this Clockwork fellow truly exist?" Chiron asked. Percy could identify the hopefulness underlying in his tone. Chiron hoped Clockwork existed. Percy cocked his head confused.
"He just may be... The boy's father." He said. And inwardly, Percy sighed. Outwardly, he smirked and shook his head, tapping the side of his head. "Oh... It's... All in their head?" Percy shrugged, before turning to go on his way. He made it out of the Big House and was met with a four year old who crashed into him. She was blond with a pair of blank blue eyes. Percy couldn't sense too much power coming from him to indicate his lineage, but the question was answered for him.
Annabeth rushed to get the little girl. "I am so sorry for her! Her daddy just went out for a quest and now she's a little reckless." She looked up and realized who she was talking to. "Oh, you're that satyr. Did you just bring a demigod?" Percy nodded, looking away and making sure he wasn't glaring daggers at her. "Oh! Well thank you for helping us out with finding demigods. But there is something that I need to ask you. Who's Clockwork that the kids keep talking about? As head of the camp, you can tell me." Annabeth said.
Percy shrugged and pointed to his temple. "Is it a mist you put on yourself when you retrieve them? Nineteen keeps saying he knows a transformer but he's not telling who exactly." Annabeth said. Percy secretly smiled at the mention of Nineteen. He did keep his promise.
"Is it true that this Clockwork is related to Hephaestus in any way? It's a theory I thought of, even though Leo says he knows no one named Clockwork or heard his father talking about him." Percy looked at her with a raised eyebrow, letting it sink in that she's talking to a mute satyr. "Oh... Right... You can't talk. But what if we got together one time and you could write it down?" Percy shook his head, declining. One, just no. Two, dying didn't take his dyslexia away. Three, he has thirteen demigods to find, one of which could be his son. He didn't have time to entertain Annabeth and her need to know everything. He as Clockwork wasn't endangering anyone so they didn't need to know who he was.
"I like your hand mister." Annabeth's daughter said. She wasn't talking about a satyr's hand. She was talking about the gauntlet that was his hand. Percy nearly laughed at the irony of it.
Annabeth wanted to find Clockwork, and not only was he right in front of her, her four year old daughter, and probably every child who saw him in the camp, knew it. And they would probably tell her too, but she would never believe them.
Then a message popped into his head, one only his patron could send.
Audience: The Olympian Council and the Demigod Council.
Lucky you. Percy thought as he dismissed himself from the conversation to head to Olympus. You'll be meeting Clockwork afterall.
And that's a wrap! Hoped you enjoyed and don't forget to comment your thoughts!
YOU ARE READING
Percy Jackson is betrayed before he's downright murdered. His body is left in the forest for the monsters, but a certain god finds him, and then his body is never seen again. And now a legend is spreading among the newer campers, a legend of Hephae...