The Trial of the Rivers

All is going well for Lea as she finishes her time as a god, but when Nico goes mysteriously missing things take a turn for the worse. No longer welcome at camp, and with new power on the rise, Lea is doubting her decisions to stay mortal. Then when news from the gods comes, saying that Lord Hades has been overthrown, Lea and some other experienced demi-gods must travel west to take back the underworld.

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1. 1- My Immortality Trial Ends

1- My Immortality Trial Ends
I’m not going to lie, It’s really fun being a god. 
You never get tired or hungry, unless you decide your going to sleep or going to eat, which makes it altogether a more pleasant experience. You don’t have to go to school or do homework. You never have to do your laundry or the dishes. It’s every teenagers dream. I didn’t even have to comb my hair or take showers and my hair still fell flawlessly untangled down my back and I always smelled like peppermint. 
It seriously sucked on the last day of my trial, it was like owning a videogame just long enough to fall in love with it, but not long enough to finish it. Pure torture. 
After a long day of bending the eastern hemispheres dreams and delivering messages for Hermes, I hunkered down at my suite on Olympus. It was just a rental room, but the service was divine, literally. 
I had a full queen sized circular bed with a silk comforter woven by Circe Imports © the shimmering pink gold and magenta swirls shifting like a 3d image, in the middle of my master bedroom. Next door was my master bathroom with a bathtub the size of a large Jacuzzi with more buttons than I could press. I tried to test out some of the options and ended up being coated in rose smelling oils, and sticky froths that made my skin sparkle. One button even controlled what shape you wanted the fountain to created, I chose a Pegasus, naturally. 
I had a great view over New York and a holographic projector computer that allowed me to play unreleased videogames and watch Hephaestus TV unlimited. 
As I watched the not-yet-made tenth season of Supernatural I had to feel a bit guilty, I hadn’t visited camp since December, and it was almost June now. I hadn’t talked to Cloe or Ava in months. I still stayed in touch with Percy, who came up to Olympus with Annabeth for routine check ups on the building process. I talked with Nico every few days through dreams messages, a skill I had now mastered. I was still lonely, I spent the past six months solitarily bending people’s dreams and deciding which ones they should remember. 
It was a complicated process, every dream should have a subtle message, buried deep within the chaos of random happenings. It was very difficult to decide how and what to do. 
Most of the dreams I dealt with were that of people who lived in Asia and Russia, so that I could sleep during the night here in America. This might have been a bad idea if people actually spoke in dreams, luckily, the figments just mouth the words and then telepathically transfer thoughts, or else I would have to learn a lot of new languages. 
Although, I would miss Olympus and all it’s perks, I was still happy to be returning to normal life. It was like a huge weight off my shoulders. 
I sighed, flopping back onto my bed, the ten inch memory foam topper, enveloped me, and I fell asleep almost instantaneously. I didn’t dream, instead I walked through the limbo of the dream world, the infinite field wrapped in fog, I didn’t bother use the effort to change the scenery, although I was tempted. In stead I layed on the soft grey brown soil, and closed my eyes, of course I didn’t fall asleep since I was already asleep. I hadn’t figured out inception quite yet. I let the sound of the breeze ruffling through the grass calm me, and shifted the dream to smell like freshly cut grass. Just as I was about to reach a state of pure oblivion a strange voice wafted through the silence, “Beware the daughter of dreams, forced to hear cohort’s screams. Morpheus’ bane, will never know her kin’s pain.  On the quest she stands forsaken, left to watch as her friends are taken,” I expected it to end there, but the voice continued, “But alas she fights with promise, a mortal with the heart of a goddess. Promises, pain, forgetfulness and fire, a threat to the gods so very dire.”
I opened my eyes slowly hesitant to see my surroundings, but nothing had changed, the voice still echoes in the distance. I tried to think about what it sounded like, but the details quickly slip from my mind like water rushing from open hands. All I can recall is the voice being faintly female and cool and slippery, like iridescent oil. I tried to focus, and remember everything I could but soon all that I can recall are the words and soon even those fade from my subconscious. 
Feeling a bit psyched from the strange happening, I tried to wake myself up, but nothing happened, my surroundings flickered like a holograph, revealing a flash of black.  All I could make out from the flashing image are the slick black walls, high ceilings, and the familiar smell of minerals, I was in a cave. But not any cave, “Lea,” a weak, distant voice groans. 
I sat bolt upright on my bed. I’m back on Olympus. 
I wiped the cold sweat from my hair line, and looked at my palm, damp with perspiration. It’s strange, I haven’t sweated in sixth months, it was not something I missed. I’m tempted to go take a bath and relax, but when I see the two packed duffel bags on my floor, I get the hint. My immortality was gone and now I was just a guest who had worn her welcome. 
I slung my bags over my shoulder and take one last look around, in the early morning haze my room seemed dark and dismal, no longer the deluxe hangout. I stepped, out of the doorway, and into the warm sun light, with winding marble pathway, glistens with little specks of opal reflecting the pink and orange sunrise. I took my time wandering back to the main path, Eventually I reached the fountain where I spent most of my spare time; a complex marble statue of Aphrodite rising from the ocean mist. It lined the main path, and with a short walk up the hill, you would be in the throne room. As usual some of my new godly friends were hanging out there. 
The statue was our meeting, place if we wanted to talk or go get lunch together at one of the booths, now it was my place to say goodbye. 
“Hey guys,” I said, raising my voice over the eight other voices. 
Their chatter, ceased immediately and they all turned to look at me. 
It was silent for a few seconds, and awkward exchange of glances, then Pheme spoke up, “I heard you’re no longer a goddess, Lea.” 
“Ummm, no, not anymore,” I said. 
Everyone was staring at me with pitiful eyes, I’m not sure if they were sad I was leaving or they just thought I was really stupid for denying immortality. 
Just then, Eleos, stood up from his seat of the fountains bench rim, and walked up to me. He stared at me with watery blue eyes for a minute, and then hugged me so tight my arms bent in a way they weren’t supposed to. He lifted me from the ground and sighed the most dramatic sigh I’ve ever heard, like he was on a Spanish Soap Opera and then set me down. 
“I’m so sorry, Lea,” and then he gave me a compassionate smile and I watched a tear trickled down his face. 
As to be expected, being the spirit of mercy, pity, and compassion, he was a bit of a drama-king when it came to goodbyes. One time he started sobbing when I told him about saying goodbye to Percy when I was on my quest. 
“Oh hush up, Eleos, contain yourself,” said Pothos, who was standing with his arms crossed next to the fountain. 
Eleos sniffed, and gave me a longing look and then sat back down. 
My closest friend, Elpis, with her beautiful caramel hair and hazel eyes, stood up, her long white chiton billowing in the breeze, she hugged me warmly, and then put her hands on my shoulders and looked into my eyes, her ageless face smiling warmly, “You are going to do such great things, I believe in you.”
Her face was completely sincere, but I wasn’t sure how deeply I should take high expectations from the goddess of hope herself. 
I then looked at the rest of my friends, Pothos, licked his lips and winked, which made me extremely uncomfortable, so I didn’t spend much time making ye contact with him. He always made me want to crawl into a corner and hide my face from sheer awkwardness. I let out a small pitiful half-laugh and took a step back. 
When I met eyes with Hedylogos he stood, and bowed before me, kissing my hand like a prince from a sappy Disney movie, “It was so wonderful to get the chance to meet you, you truly are beautiful, and you really should know that,” he batted his long thick lashes at me, “I hope you can visit us again soon, Venustus.”
“I’m Lea,” I said, suddenly confused by the strange name he called me. 
He laughed lightly, “Venustus, means graceful.”
“Haha, oh right, thanks.” I replied, trying to slip away as he brushed a stray hair out of my face. 
For some reason, even though I got along with them, all of the Erotes, really freaked me out, especially Himeros and Pothos. There was only one that understood me well. 
I looked up at Eros, he lounged on the statue lazily lying on part of the Marble sash that twirled and twisted around the Aphrodite statue, floating far from her body.
He smiled at me and winked. He was a bit off, looking a little too far to my left, but I got the notion. 
I nodded at the rest of my friends, and turned, heading back down the main path to the empire state building, after a few feet I looked back, grinning and whispered, “Bye, Eros,” And I knew, even though he was almost ten yards away, he heard me. With that I set off. 
On the way, one of my not-so-close friends, Chloris, goddess of flowers, handed me a bouquet of iridescent white roses and gave me a hopeful smile. 
I thanked her and continued on, when I reached a point where the golden-lined clouds parted to show the Empire State building, I turned off the main path and found one of the many Iris-message fountains positioned around Olympus.  I fumbled for the drachma in the back of my hot pink Jean’s pocket and easily flipped it into the rainbow and recited instinctually, “Oh Iris, Goddess of the Rainbow, except my offering and show me Henry Reclin, Camp Half Blood, Long Island.”
The rainbow shimmered and an image of Henry sitting on the porch of the big blue house appeared, he sat with his hand covering his mouth in a deep hunched thinking pose, staring off into the distance.
“Boo,” I said.
He jumped, almost toppling out of his plastic chair, and swung his head to look at the shimmering image that had appeared next to him, “Hey Lea,” his face brightened considerably, “Are you ready for me to come pick you up?”
“No, dad, I just carried my bags all the way down to this fountain to tell you I miss you,” I replied sarcastically. 
He laughed, “I’ll see you soon,” and then stood up and swished his hand through the Iris message, making the image dissipate. 
I sighed, hefted my bags, picked up my bouquet, and walked to the edge of the path. I stared at the New York streets miles below me, I carefully plucked every petal from my roses and dropped them, watching as they fell in a glittery rainbow of colors. 
The second I had dropped the last petal, the remains left in my hand dissolved into shimmery dust which I released over the edge too. 
I wasn’t sure if to the pedestrians below if it seemed like beautiful confetti or if it just looked like a fairy had thrown up, either way I was glad to have lightened my load. 
I couldn’t help but smile, I was finally going home. I stepped through the gigantic arched elevator door, turning to watch as they closed behind me, shutting me off from Olympus, “Camp-Half Blood, here I come.”

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