You sat alone in the dark at a table in the mess hall of the Argo II. Midnight had passed, but it would be hours until sunrise. You pushed your spoon into the half-eaten tub of rocky road ice cream and sighed before eating another bite.
It had been four days since Leo's disappearing act when he'd been catapulted into the sky and out of sight.
Usually, you and he would sit together this late at night, or early in the morning and eat whatever flavor of ice cream that Leo was in the mood for. You'd go for any flavor. You two would joke and laugh about serious things, because that was the only way that you two could talk about anything mildly distressing. It was the only time that he could talk about his mother without completely shutting down. And, it was the only time that you could stand to talk about your father, Zeus, without doing the same thing.
And you both felt really comfortable with talking to each other. His ill-timed, kind-of-crass, thoughtless comments matched perfectly with your sarcastic, cynical, snappy responses.
But since Leo had been missing, you spent every night down here alone. You were taking another bite when you heard someone come through the doorway.
You recognized the voice as Jason, but it had taken a while to let it sink in that he was your brother. Well...."brother". Since his father was the Roman equivalent of your father, you technically were half-siblings. "Couldn't sleep?"
You just shook your head. "Get a spoon and pull up a chair."
Jason accepted, and he sat across from you in Leo's usual spot. "What's on your mind?" he asked delicately. He knew that I would take a little more than that for you to open up, being one of the stubborn children of the King of the Gods. Zeus' children never liked to be seen when vulnerable.
"Nothing, it's just habit now to stay up. Since Leo and I would...you know, do this." You pointed your spoon to the bit tub of ice cream between the two of you. Jason scooped some into his mouth.
"So that's what's wrong."
You furrowed your eyebrows, giving him a silent question.
"Leo," he answered. You avoided his gaze.
"Hey, since Thalia isn't here, and since you've never met her, I'm the only sibling you've got to talk things through with," he said, sounding supportive, "so you might as well use me."
You sighed. He was right; but you never liked talking about your feelings. And it's not like you had any feelings for Leo or anything but his absence had made you depressed.
Jason was just waiting for an answer, and when it was obvious that you weren't going to give any, he sighed. "Okay, so let me ask you a question."
You looked up at him in the dim light of the room.
"You're not so blinded that you're going to tell me that you don't like him, right?"
You rolled your eyes at your brother. "Please, Jason. I don't. He's like a little brother that I have to babysit and look after."
Jason gave you a look that you ignored.
"Well, little sister," he said as he stabbed his spoon in the ice cream and stood up, "Ask yourself what you're feeling and why. And think about what Leo feels about you. If you see even a fraction of what's actually happening, I think you'll come to a different conclusion."