Silver Bow

I open the door and see a teenage boy with messy black hair and black eyes.

"Uh...Can I help you?" I ask.

"Can I come in?" he asks, playing with a silver skull ring on his right middle finger. "My name's Nico di Angelo."

•••

When fifteen year old Celeste Arya is introduced to the world of Greek mythology by a strange boy with black eyes, her life is completely switched around. What happens when she finds out she was never meant to be born? Will Celeste live until her sixteenth birthday or will she die saving her mother's skin?

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4. The Campfire

"Okay, so, for dinner, you just sacrifice the best part of your meal to your godly parent," Nico explains and I nod.

"Got it," I say.

I feel a weird feeling come over me and a burning sensation fills my right forearm. When I look at it, I see a dark, nightmare black aura around me. Gasps fills the pavilion.

"Celeste Arya, granddaughter and blessed of Hades," Chiron announces and everyone stares at me, their eyes wide.

"Mind your own business, people," Nico commands, glaring. To me, "Well, looks like you're sitting at my table!"

The burning and aura subsides and I see a skull tattoo on my forearm, about two inches below my elbow. Below it, Hades is written in ancient Greek.

"So...are you my cousin or something? My uncle?" I ask Nico.

"Doesn't matter. We're not siblings, which is all you have to worry about," he says, giving me a small smile. I nod and we get our food.

"Mom, please claim me," I whisper, dropping the food in. I add some pomegranate, which Nico says Hades loves. "Also, thanks, Hades. It means a lot."

I follow Nico to the Hades table, all too aware of the new mark on my arm. At least it's very nicely done. I sit across from Nico, quietly eating my food. I play with the skull bracelet Nico gave me, unsure of what to do. I feel so awkward, so out of place, yet so at peace. Stupid emotions.

"So. How do you like camp so far?"

"It's alright," I shrug. "Pretty cool."

"Good," he says, smiling slightly.

"I wonder who my mom is, though."

"Well, what's your dad like?"

"He's a nature photographer," I say. "He loves the wilderness. And wolves. He loves photographing wolves."

Nico pales a little bit, which is saying something. He's already crazy pale, like he's dead or something. Or as if he's never seen sunlight in his life. I guess it makes sense. He is the son of Hades, after all.

After dinner, Nico shows me the way to the campfire. Everybody stares at us, whispering. I try to ignore them, especially since it's crazy annoying.

"Forget them," Nico tells me. "They aren't worth paying attention to."

"Then who is?" I ask, raising my eyebrows.

"You," he says. "I have a feeling that when you get claimed, you'll be sent on a quest."

"A quest?"

"You'll pick two people to go with you."

"I'll pick you for one of them, obviously."

"Good."

We go to the Hades cabin and I sit on my bed, polishing my bow and the shafts of my arrows. Nico watches me intently and tosses me something. I catch it, curious. It's a dagger with a cover. I pull the black leather cover off and am met with a nightmare black blade. He also gives me a sword identical to his own, as well as a belt to put it in.

"Stygian Iron," he says. "Only blood of the Underworld can wield it."

"Thanks," I say, smiling at him.

"No problem."

I yawn and curl up on my bed, not bothering to change into pajamas or even tuck myself in. Within seconds, I'm fast asleep.

"My dear," a sweet, yet severe voice murmurs. "I will send you a guardian."

"Who are you?" I ask, glaring into nothingness.

"My darling girl, I am your mother."

I wake with a start, my eyes wide and a thin layer of sweat coating my forehead. I glance outside, only to see it's still the middle of the night.

"Wonderful," I whisper. "Just wonderful."

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