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.)


2. I'm telling you. I'm not a bird.

I awoke to a renewed sense of pain. Wonderful. Just… wonderful. It felt as though someone had poured salt into my wounds, and then decided to stitch them up, with the salt still inside, and then proceeded to coat the whole thing in vinegar. I opened my eyes slowly, twisting my head to look at my calf, to find that someone had, in fact, put a generous helping of salt into my wounds. There was a small pile of the white crystals at my feet, stained pink with my blood. The stuff that hadn’t stuck, I realised.

Brilliant. Half bloods hate me, despite the absolutely nothing I’ve ever done to them. Well, except for that one time in- I stopped myself, stifling a groan as the pain in my shoulder throbbed.

It was at this point that I noticed the room I was in was pitch black (or at least, as pitch black as a room could be), and that I was chained to a wall. My hands were shackled above my head, my feet only just able to reach the ground beneath.

Did I mention the room was cold? My back was essentially bare- all of the form-shifting and various attacks from the monsters had shredded the shirt I was wearing- and all I could feel was the freezing stone wall behind me. I shuddered involuntarily, aggravating the wound on my shoulder. At least both holes had stopped leaking blood. Before the salt, I might have even received some medical attention. Fancy that. I even noticed the lack of arrow heads digging into my skin.

My arms ached, and I wriggled my fingers to try and get some feeling back into them. I wondered how long I’d been here, chained up in the Camp Half-Blood dungeon. I didn’t even know they had a dungeon. You didn’t hear much about demigods taking monsters hostage, as well.

I looked up, cursing as I saw the familiar glint of Stygian iron. I shook my hands, the iron shackles clinking together. “Well that’s just bloody brilliant,” I muttered, mostly under my breath. They certainly didn’t keep regular humans here, with shackles like these.

A sigh escaped me as the pain ebbed away, dissipating slowly over my back as I stood still. Sweet relief at last. Then, a thought crossed my mind.

Surely they would have noticed- From the things I’d heard…

I frowned, rattling my chains again. Perhaps… Just… Just maybe they hadn’t sensed it. I took a deep breath, bracing myself for the pain that would inevitably follow. I allowed my body to warp back into its normal state- no more of this silly human disguise. The demigods would see just how non-lethal I was. I’d show them. I’d be the KING of harmlessness.

The iron bent, stretching, warping under the stress, before they eventually snapped open, clattering to the ground. It stung my wrists a little, of course, but it was a worthwhile exercise. Even the fancy metals of the Gods couldn’t quite hold up to being forced open with unstoppable force from the inside. I screeched in pain as the actual salt in my wounds shifted as I changed shape, kicking myself away from the wall and into the centre of the room, stretching my wings out as much as I could. My right wing was very stiff, the wound at my shoulder making it difficult to move it fully.

After the pain subsided, I heard the sound of footsteps on what sounded like steps. I shook my head, shaking out my feathery mane, trying to get them to lie properly. This always happened, they never lay in the right place.
The wooden door burst open with the force of someone kicking it. A dark-haired girl strode in, sword brandished like… well, like a sword.

I backed up a little, splaying my wings (alright, splaying my left wing) defensively. The girl stopped where she was, confusion flickering across her features for a split second.

I squawked in what I hoped was a submissive tone, lowering myself slightly so that we met at eye level. She seemed tense, ready to strike at any moment.

“It’s rude to point swords at people,” I said eventually, catching the grey-eyed lass by surprise. 

She faltered slightly, before speaking up herself. “It is?” She raised an eyebrow, “I can’t say I’ve never noticed. No one has ever lived to tell me.” She twirled the sword in her hand, demonstrating ample ability to gut me. She was daring me to explain myself, to say one little word out of place.

I readjusted my wings, folding them in now that we’d decided to be a tad more civil. “Aren’t you just a little ball of happiness,” I said. “Honestly you seem to happy and cheerful and so ready to not murder me and instead treat me to something nice, like a-”

“Why are you here,” she paused, looking me up and down. “Cat-bird?” 

I blinked my amber eyes at her. “I was going to ask you the same thing, monkey-person.” She glared. “I thought I had written “Help” on my arm, not “Chain me up in your weird ass dungeon”.”

She looked at me like I was crazy. Or at the very least, delusional. Which I might have been. I wasn’t too sure yet. “Dude, I don’t know whether you noticed, but you’re a monster. This is a safe haven- Lemme repeat- SAFE HAVEN- for half bloods. I mean your disguise was flawless- you nearly had us all fooled- but Chiron sensed your… bird-ness.”

“I’m not a bird,” I mumbled.

“I don’t care. You’ve shown your true colours now, monster, I won’t let you speak a word more-”

“Hold your horses there, girlie. Or should I say man-horses.” I chuckled at myself. The half-blood raised her sword threateningly. I stopped. “Alright, I’m surprised Chiron didn’t realise I wasn’t in my true shape, I’d heard he was good at recognising monsters. Anyway I’m getting distracted here.” She nodded in agreement, raising her sword a little to remind me. “You lot would have killed me the moment you saw me like this, being the stabby maniacs that you half-bloods are, wouldn’t you? You can’t fool me, if even half of the things I’ve heard about you lot is true… So being the clever little griffin I am, I thought it best to appear in a more familiar shape, y’know? So you don’t stab me? Or at least, so there’s a chance you won’t stab me. It seems to me like that was a good call, as I don’t appear to be dead quite yet.”

The girl raised an eyebrow, putting a hand on her hip. “See you’ve missed the most important part of your story here, bird-”


“Bird.” She said again, more forcefully this time. “Why in the Gods’ names did you think we would help you? Did you not get the memo? Half bloods and monsters don’t mix.”

I could think of at least a dozen exceptions to that. I would have said something, but my survival instincts got the better of me, thank gods. “Well you see, I have a problem that only Half-Bloods can solve. And I think you’ll want to hear me out. In fact, it’s in your best interests.” She looked sceptical. “Look, I’ll even make myself  less dangerous for you.” I shifted forms, rearing onto my hind legs as I morphed back into a human shape. I let out a cry of pain as it shot lightning bolts down my back. “I… forgot… about that.” I mumbled between gasps.
I felt the cold of a blade against my throat. “Why should we listen to you, bird?”

“I’m not a bird.”

“Well you certainly looked like one.”

“I’m a griffin.”




“I’m reasonably sure I’m a griffin.”

“You looked like a bird.”

“Sorry to burst your bubble, but just because something looks like something else, doesn’t mean it actually is that thing. I’m not a human now, am I?”

She made a face, moving a step closer. I took a step back. I’d rather not have my throat slit. Not here, at least. The floors had enough of my blood on them. “For a child of Athena you’re awfully dumb,” I said.

“Do you want me to hurt you?”

“More than I have already? I mean, I’d rather you didn’t, but you can try if you want. Of course then I wouldn’t be able to tell you about them.”

“… Them?” She parroted, her sword arm relaxing the tiniest bit.

I grinned at her. “Them. You won’t be able to find out about them if you stab me here and now.”

“What if I don’t care?”

I deflated slightly. “Well I mean if you want to bring them upon your little camp. It’s not as though I care, I’ll only go to… Tartarus…” Crap. I really, really didn’t want to go to Tartarus. It sucked there. Bad holiday destination. Would not recommend. Not even to my worst enemy.

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