I am Harmony Rose Kendrick, Demigod and daughter of Apollo. This is my story.
I trudge through the muddy forest in my trainers, which are caked with dirt. I came to the forest on the outskirts of The Camp Half Blood because of my dream. A half-blood's dream is never just their imagination. An arrow hits the tree beside me, just above my head. I have to untangle a few strands of my brown hair just to carry on. Close one.
"Hunter?" I call hoarsely. Hunter is one of my best friends, son of my father's twin, Artemis and always uses a bow and arrow. It must be him playing tricks on me. "Hunter, I know you're there, stop it!"
Thunder roars in the sky and a bolt of lightning hits the tree that bears the arrow in its trunk, sizzling the leaves on its branches. I look down at my pale hands, which are shaking in the dark sky of the night. The angry sky reminds me of my friend Storm's father, Zeus.
"Storm? Quit it, you're scaring me!" my voice trembles.
The harsh clink of metal on metal clangs in the near distance, stopping me in my tracks. I am paralysed with the fear of what I cannot see and am unsure of. Is Benjamin in on this cruel prank as well, or are my friends all sleeping in their separate cabins? A hammer drops onto the floor in front of me, the handle landing on my big toe, making me wince. I pick it up gently, then examine it carefully. It has the seal of Hephaestus on it. I tighten my grip on it and pace myself. Slow and steady steps.
"Harmony!" cries a voice. A figure appears before me, getting larger and larger. Then it grabs my arm. "This...thing...it...ugh, help...!" The voice is wheezy, but I recognise it: Hunter Smyth, the boy who save my life a year ago in this very forest.
"Wha-" I begin, but am cut off as a huge beast jumps out of the bushes, its golden eyes twinkling with a wild look and its open mouth encasing four rows of jagged, dagger-like teeth that are glistening with saliva.
"Let's go!" Hunter shrieks, digging his fingernails into the bare flesh of my arm. I begin to wish that I had worn a longer shirt, as the bitter cold slashes my vulnerable arms.
We dash away, the monster hot on our heels. I get my foot caught in a cluster of weeds and thorns, creating a bundle of mismatched bloody scratches on my ankle when I drag myself out of them. We dodge a boulder that marks the entrance of a cave Storm and I discovered just over a month ago. It will come in handy now. I follow Hunter into the furthest end of the cave, which is empty apart from a paraffin burner from the Hephaestus cabin, but broke and was fixed by Benjamin. I watch with wide eyes as the creature runs into the boulder with a loud cracking noise that makes Goosebumps appear on my arms. The body of me and Hunter's follower falls to the floor, its blood streaming out of its body, creating a deep crimson pool around it.
"Ew, gross!" Hunter mutters.
I sigh and turn on the paraffin lamp, which creates a faint light against the old natural walls of the cave. It illuminates Hunter's face, revealing a deep gash on his left cheek. It is covered in dirt and blood and looks incredibly sore. He notices me looking and turns away so I can't see it. I can tell that it will scar, which will be a shame as he is quite handsome. I examine my wounded leg and then set out to create a salve.
When I return, Hunter is laying on the floor, snoring. I laugh slightly and then dab the fresh salve onto his cheek. All these years of learning to be a healer for the camp with my half-brothers and sisters has paid off once again. I told you, dreams are never just dreams when they belong to demigods.