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JASON DROPPED KYRA'S HAND and summoned his sword

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JASON DROPPED KYRA'S HAND and summoned his sword. Coach Hedge pulled out his club. Mellie the aura yelled, "No!"

She dived at their feet just as the storm spirits hit with hurricane force, blasting the floor to pieces, shredding the carpet samples and marble and linoleum into what should've been lethal projectiles, had Mellie's robes not spread out like a shield and absorbed the brunt of the impact. The five of them fell into the pit, and Aeolus screamed above them, "Mellie, you are so fired!"

"Quick," Mellie yelled. "Son of Zeus, do you have any power over the air?"

"A little!"

"Then help me, or you're all dead!" Mellie grabbed his hand, and an electric charge went through Jason's arm. He understood what she needed. They had to control their fall and head for one of the open tunnels. The storm spirits were following them down, closing rapidly, bringing with them a cloud of deadly shrapnel.

Jason grabbed Kyra's hand once again, "Group hug!"

Hedge, Leo, Kyra, and Piper tried to huddle together, hanging on to Jason and Mellie as they fell.

"This is not good!" Leo yelled.

"Bring it on, gas bags!" Hedge yelled up at the storm spirits. "I'll pulverize you!"

"He's magnificent," Mellie sighed.

"Concentrate?" Jason prompted.

"Right!" she said.

They channeled the wind so their fall became more of a tumble into the nearest open chute. Still, they slammed into the tunnel at painful speed and went rolling over each other down a steep vent that was not designed for people. There was no way they could stop.

Mellie's robes billowed around her. Jason and the others clung to her desperately, and they began to slow down, but the storm spirits were screaming into the tunnel behind them.

"Can't—hold—long," Mellie warned. "Stay together! When the winds hit—"

"You're doing great, Mellie," Hedge said. "My own mama was an aura, you know. She couldn't have done better herself."

"Iris-message me?" Mellie pleaded and Hedge winked.

"Could you guys plan your date later?!" Kyra screamed. "Look!"

Behind them, the tunnel was turning dark. Jason could feel his ears pop as the pressure built.

"Can't hold them," Mellie warned. "But I'll try to shield you, do you one more favor."

"Thanks, Mellie," Jason said. "I hope you get a new job."

She smiled, and then dissolved, wrapping them in a warm gentle breeze. Then the real winds hit, shooting them into the sky so fast, Jason blacked out.

Kyra dreamed she was in a hospital. But she recognized this hospital. It was the one where she spent six months in when she was ten. 

Kyra walked down the familiar hallway until she reached the room she stayed in all those years ago. There, a small girl laid on the bed with bright blue eyes. Kyra then realized that it was her. 

"I used to visit you every night." Kyra turned to see a man in his early thirties with golden blonde hair and sky blue eyes wearing khaki pants and a sun orange button up.

"Apollo." Kyra whispered, "Dad?"

"You're only dreaming. Don't tell anyone I was here." He smirked at her, "Don't want to get in any more trouble with the big man."

"I—" Kyra wanted to ask a thousand questions, but they all crowded together in her head, "Why am I here?"

"Cause this was the first time we officially met." Apollo pointed to the room Kyra's ten-year-old self was in and there was a man wearing a doctor's coat. He was also Apollo. 

Tears filled Kyra's eyes, "You were my mother's last hope. All of the other doctors didn't think I was going to survive."

"You're my daughter, Kyra. You're destined for great things. You needed to survive." He gave her a small, sad smile, "You have other trials to face, first. Your demons will be back, along with many other enemies. The Doors of Death have opened."

Her eyebrows furrowed, "What do you mean?"

Apollo winked at her. "You're a smart one, Kyra. You know."

A cold feeling settled over her. "The sleeping woman, the one Midas called their patron. She's managed to open a new entrance from the Underworld. She's letting the dead escape back into the world."

Apollo nodded, "And not just any dead. The worst, the most powerful, the ones most likely to hate the Gods."

"The monsters are coming back from Tartarus the same way," Kyra guessed. "That's why they don't stay disintegrated, like the Cyclops."

"Yes. Their patron, as you call her, has a special relationship with Tartarus, the spirit of the pit." Apollo explained,

"Who is she?" Kyra demanded. "The one controlling the giants?"

"Patience, my daughter," the God said. "There are some questions that I just can't answer."

Kyra paused for a moment in thought, "Am... am I going to die?"

Apollo stared at her, "What makes you think that?"

"I've been told that children of Apollo don't last long with heroes." She told her father,

"Ah, yes. Michael Yew and Lee Fletcher. They were good kids. It was unfortunate what happened to them." Apollo stated, "I cannot speak of your fate, Kyra. I'm not allowed." He grabbed her hands, "But what I can tell you is that you are meant to be great. You are a unique child, Kyra. Different from you siblings."

Kyra pulled her hands away and shook her head, "But that doesn't answer my question!"

"Everyone's time comes, Kyra. We don't get to choose." Apollo sighed, "I must go."

"Of course you do! You always leave!" Kyra yelled at him, "You never take responsibility for your children. You don't care!"

Apollo's features grew dark and he cornered Kyra against the wall, pointing towards the room where her ten-year-old self resided, "I took responsibility for you then! I saved you! I care!"

"Did you save Micheal Yew? What about Lee?!" She questioned, "Or did they die thinking you didn't care?"

"It's too late for them." Apollo spoke quietly, "But it's not too late for you."

"When will it be?" Kyra asked before Apollo snapped his fingers.

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