A Tale of Griffins and Half-Bloods

Being a monster is hard enough. Being a monster who needs demigods to help you is even worse. Being a monster who needs help from demigods against other monsters is living hell.
And you thought being human was hard.

(Okay so I'm now realising my huuuuuge mistakes in consistency with the actual books so please bear with me that will be fixed I swear.)

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16. Everyone loves a good fire. - Alyx

Dinner passed relatively quickly, and the sun started to set in the distance. All of us, the griffin included, headed back to the arena for some trials of strength. Why the bird was coming along with us, I wasn’t entirely sure. It was optional- for him, at least- and he’d given me the impression that he didn’t really want anything to do with us.

The trials passed by with the same results as most nights. The Ares demigods won this time- the victory normally cycled between Athena, Poseidon, and Ares. It could have been different this week, what with there being a monster around, but the bird just sat alone in the stands, watching. He didn’t seem that interested really- he watched with a blank stare that suggested his mind was elsewhere.

 

He trailed behind as us half-bloods crowded toward the campfire, the others talking excitedly to each other about the rest of their year, and the events that might occur this summer. The last few years had been accompanied by some massive quest. I personally was hoping for a quieter camp. All of the excitement with the rise of Kronos had grown old fairly quickly. The danger, once exhilarating, had become worrying and, at times, absolutely terrifying.

I almost forgot the bird existed while the Apollo cabin led sing-along, joyfully joining everyone else, singing as loud as I could. My cabin-mates, our quarrel from earlier forgotten, sung with me. We toasted s’mores over the flames in a friendly atmosphere. Now this? This was the camp Half-blood I was used to. Not once did I think of the events of that day- the strange boy appearing at the camp’s borders, and the subsequent discovery that he was a monster.

I let out a deep breath. I hadn’t noticed how tense I was. Of course being tense was usual for a half-blood, It was basically our natural state. But as I sat there, the light almost completely faded from the sky, the campfire before me warming my skin pleasantly, I felt at ease. Relaxed.

My eyes flicked toward where Cinder sat for a brief moment. Long enough to realise that the bird wasn’t sitting on his isolated log anymore, and was starting to make his way back toward the forest. Nobody else seemed to notice, so I stood up and started toward him. I had to jog to catch up, as the griffin didn’t slow.

“Where are you going, bird?” I asked, my tone lighthearted. This wasn’t the time for threats. Chiron had told us he would be an ally, for now at least.

He looked toward me, yellow eyes practically glowing in the darkness. He studied me for a few moments, as though trying to discern what I was made of, before answering. “I’m going to my tree,” he said simply, turning back to the forest. “I might scout the forest before I sleep, but it’s been a long day. Why, little demigod, do you need to know?”

Defencive much. I shrugged, gesturing toward the campfire. “I didn’t see you join in on even one of those songs- Singing at the campfire is the highlight of most evenings. Besides, you’ve gotta join in sometime, prove to us that you’re not just some big scary monster here to eat us.”

The griffin didn’t even give the slightest hint of a smile. His eyes were lacking the humour he had very clearly exhibited earlier, much to everyone else at camp’s annoyance. “I know none of your human songs,” he said quietly, the fire reflecting in his yellow eyes eerily, “and this is not the time for me to celebrate.”

I shrugged, turning back toward the orange glow. “Suit yourself, grumpy pants.”

I didn’t look back until I returned to my seat. He stood still for a few moments longer, his eyes yellow pinpricks in the darkness, before he turned and continued on his way.

His loss, I suppose.

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