Camp Thárros: A New Beginning

13 year old Athena Williams believes she is an ordinary kid with nothing special about her or her life. But one day she finds a book on Greek mythology in her basement and discovers secrets about herself and her past that she never thought possible. She embarks upon a summer trip to Camp Thárros, only to find that these hidden secrets are not quite what they were cracked up to be and that a darker and more mysterious force is at work. She must complete a wuest along with her friends and encounter things far more ferocious and dangerous than any book could begin to describe.



For a couple of days, Athena and Timmy were bound to the first aid room in the beds. They were fatigued and cut-covered whilst everyone else went off for their final week of activities. It was boring in the first aid room as Timmy was almost always asleep, mumbling all the while. Other than that, no one was allowed in so Athena occupied herself with negative thoughts.

Eventually, Friday came and with it came excited voices and yells from outside. To Athena’s dismay they appeared to be playing manhunt on a very large scale. How she wished she could be out there too, having fun. Instead, she was stuck in a bed all because of one stupid prophecy: that’s what it came down to. Everyone outside was having a blast: free, happy, healthy, but oh so naive. Meanwhile she was stuck with no control over her future, in a messy pool of fateful conquest in a camp that gave her the best and worse summer ever combined. They had no idea of the danger she was in, no idea of the danger the world was in, all because of loneliness. Goodness, it really didn’t pay to be lonely, oh the cruelly harsh reality of life.

The window was only a vague part of her vision; really all she saw was a blur of fake memories and the crimson flash of pained silence.

Timmy mumbled in his sleep and Athena wished he’d wake up, but he probably hadn’t slept for so long in that cage that she couldn’t be selfish...she just hated the silence; it made all bad thoughts come into the light.

Suddenly, the door unlatched and it was the head of camp, Professor Tharrein, that came in. Athena had barely seen him over the six weeks and had never spoken to him, so why was he here? Bravely, she sat up with an itchy pain splashing around her spine. Casually, the man wandered over to her bed and perched delicately on it.

“Athena, Athena, Athena” he hummed “where do we start?” dangerously, her throat went dry and she couldn’t talk, surely she wasn’t in trouble.

“Yes sir?” she croaked, hoping to be swallowed up by the bed. He gazed at her wondrously, and he somewhat reminded her of Zeus.

“You appear to be in a-how you say- pickle”

“I guess”

“I remember when I was your age, oh the feelings of first love and the vast friendships” she was confused “the keen sting of reality; it’s all a bit too much” there was a slight silence “so young”

“I’m nearly fourteen, in a few days I will be fourteen”

“And how fast we grow up” the pale blond haired man seemed like he’d been hit with the keen sting of reminiscence.

“Erm sir, what exactly is this about?” she coughed

“Oh sorry, I do get rather carried away with my thoughts sometimes, but don’t we all?”

“Yeah” she agreed awkwardly

“In response to your question, I was trying to hint at the little adventure you and your friends went on, despite better judgement.”

“Oh right, that

“Yes-well-it seems Ericarni was livid” Athena’s insides felt like they were rapidly shrinking and regressing. “It was rather foolish of you to go ahead and do something like that in spite of our word.”

She flinched. Diávolos had called her foolish and a fool several times in the Náo ruins.

“However...” he paused for what felt like a fluctuating eternity. “Due to the courage you’ve shown in recent events- we’ve decided to let it go” she breathed a sigh of relief “although I must press the matter; it was very thoughtless and reckless.”

“I know and I’m sorry, we just...felt we had to.”

“May I have a look in your backpack” ‘what for?’ she thought. Cautiously, she handed it over. Tharrein opened the front zipped pocket and pulled out the toothed necklace that she’d found in the book a long while ago. “Do you know what this is?”

“A shark’s tooth?” she guessed

“No, gia tin týchi” he told her, Athena looked quite lost “it means, for luck. It’s a dragon’s tooth and it belonged to Charles Williams”


“Yes, the tooth of one. Its believed to have ancient ‘lucky’ powers, so this may have been in your...advantage when you challenged Diávolos, had you had it in battle....although, fate shall find its way. Did you have anything else?”

“Urr” she thought allowed “the tear amulet”

“I see”

“Are suggesting that I won because of an amulet?” he was silent “You have that little faith in me? Where is it, I need to see it”

“I’m afraid that won’t be possible” Athena abruptly stopped rummaging around her covers and stared questionably at him “it is back with Voithós”

“And the daggers?” he briefly nodded “sir?”


“Will Diávolos come back soon” he took a while to retrieve his answer

“No” he said at last “Diávolos is hurt and much cleverer than that, I think he’ll need to-” but Tharrein was cut off when the door creaked open. Stood there was Emma, Robbie and Liam, behind them were Zak and Phil.

“Oh, hell Professor” Emma spoke “Professor Ranch said we could visit”

“Of course”

“He’ll need to what sir?” Athena whispered urgently

“I’ll see you tomorrow Athena” with that he departed, leaving the five visitors to freely roam the room. More mystery.

Zak and Phil went to Timmy’s bed and he woke up almost instantly and began chatting brightly.

“Zen said you could leave after tonight, great huh?” Emma chirped


Zenobia Ranch, the Phoenix team leader”

“Oh” she expected Tom to make a sarcastic remark and when he didn’t, Athena properly focused on the figures in front of her and Tom was not one of them.

“Where’s Tom?”

“He went somewhere...” Emma began

“We were gonna wait for him, in fact, we went to find him” Robbie chipped in

“But we couldn’t, we’re sorry; Ranch said we couldn’t wait any longer.” Liam finalised

“How’re you in yourself?” asked Robbie kindly

“I’m fine” she brushed it off, this was unlike Tom “how’re you?” but she didn’t look at them, she just stared desperately at the door, waiting for him, but Tom didn’t walk through. They rambled on for a while, but she could only hear; listening was out of the question.

After a bit longer, Ranch came in to fetch the visitors.

“Goodbye Athena, we’ll see you tomorrow” Emma hugged her

“Bye” Liam and Robbie smiled admiringly at her. Zak and Phil said their farewells and the lock clicked back into place in the now empty, bar two people, room. It was quiet for a bit.

“Why didn’t Tom come?” Timmy sleepily quizzed

“I don’t know”

“It would’ve been nice to see a more familiar face”

“How were Zak and Phil?”

“They said that everyone’s been talking about, they even caught Seth, Paris and Simon whispering about it. Phil said that even Melanie and Barbara seemed impressed...weird huh?”


“How were Emma, Robbie and Liam?”

“Alright, a tad shaken, but OK”

“Well that’s good. Zak said there’s always a party from 8-12 on the last Saturday, tomorrow night, the last night. It’s after dinner. The professors set up whilst the kids get ready, cool right? I hardly go to parties, it should be fun”

“Sounds it” but it really didn’t to her, all those people asking her questions. It sounded claustrophobic and unnecessary. Plus there was nothing to celebrate, not in her opinion, not in light of recent events.

“He said that in Kataskeví studies they’ll be making decorations and in sports they’ll be doing the ultimate team test, it sounds exciting”

“Exciting...” she blankly repeated

“I hope I’m allowed out, it’s really rather boring in here”

“Yeah, it is”

“Well, I better sleep some more, for tomorrow”


Timmy curled up sensitively, whilst Athena lay there feeling strange. Throughout the past few days, she would’ve loved to have spoken to Timmy, but when she had the chance, she was so tied up about Tom that nothing flowed.

Clutching the ash-filled locket round her neck, Athena let the cold metal whisk her away to a misty-eyed sleep.




Saturday whizzed round as her last full day at camp and Professor Deciber was re-bandaging Athena and Timmy’s wounds.

“You can leave here today, but come back at five o’clock so I can re-bandage your hand Athena, I don’t have time right now, okay?” Deciber was saying. Athena nodded “alright, you’re done, don’t forget!” she called after her. Timmy followed her out.

“I have to come back for a rest for two hours from three forty-five and then again tomorrow at ten, just to sleep it off, she said and to check I’m okay.”

“It’ll all be over soon”

“Too soon” they stepped outside the main sector and headed to the sports field.

After having refereed through two hours of manhunt, Athena was disappointed that the tam test had been cancelled, but glad too. Glad in the sense that she didn’t miss out on anything.

Then it was two hours of creating team flags, team drawings, arrowed bunting, arrowed hangings and many other celebratory Thárros delights. As Athena couldn’t use her left hand, due to the sword burning it, she was left to collect them and yet again missed out on talking to Tom, who shrunk back in his chair every time she collected from his table. Before the end of the two hours Kwin came in and pulled out Persy, Alex and Maria. Sneakily, Athena followed at a slower pace a couple metres behind as the griffin team leader led them into her cabin. Athena could vaguely make out the muffled conversation. Kwin told them they were Magikós bloods! It appeared to take a while to sink in, but as they were marched back out, Athena quickly hid until Kwin disappeared.

“Guys!” she yelled, jumping out from the side of the hut “you know!” They grinned back at her

“It’s hard to believe” laughed Maria

“But great” smiled Alex, the two girls skipped off. It was just her and Persy who remained outside the cabin. The other professors seemed to be dragging out their first timers too.

“So, now that I know, can you tell me?” he grinned with that cheeky glint he always had in his eye. Athena laughed back and shoved him slightly, and then she told him everything. Persy was a good soul, she could trust him, inevitably.





Now that word was out about the Magikós bloods, the entire place was filled with the knowing special bloods that had finally picked up the gossip of Diávolos, Athena and Timmy. The two were like new celebrities and were ambushed on a regular basis for the remaining hours. As Athena jogged back to the first aid room escaping some irritating third timers, she greeted Timmy who had been let out of the first aid room early and was being jostled by a gang of some of the people from their class and a few third timers too.

“Now whoever said you weren’t very good at making friends?”

“You remember that?” Timmy stammered

“Of course, although it seems that someone told a lie” she whispered to him

“I didn’t, they only like me because they think I’m some kind of hero; they just want a piece of the action.”

“Nonsense” except it was partially true “enjoy the admiration while it lasts because it will have blown over by next year.” Athena continued on to the first aid room which smelt of latex gloves and sickly sweet medicine, Deciber entered behind her and quickly began re-applying the bandage to Athena’s burned and cut left hand. Timmy followed her in

“I hope so” he said whilst standing in the doorway.

“I know so”

“I’ll really miss it here though”

“Won’t we all”

“When you come back” piped up Professor Deciber “it’ll be like you’ve never been away”


“Right Athena, you’re done, Timmy, didn’t I say you could go?” Timmy rushed off outside

“Bye” and Athena shadowed him. She longed to find Tom, but where to start?

Eventually, she decided on the cabin ground, the Griffin and Phoenix second years cabin ground. However, she couldn’t see him there or anywhere. Searching all around the camp she found no sign of Tom, as if he’d just disappeared and left her, as if after being her friend for almost fourteen years he’d decided to walk away. As if he’d decided it was all too much. It had just gone six o’ clock when she realised she was now late for dinner. But her best friend was still missing. It was as if he had vanished off the face of the earth, leaving no clue as to where he could’ve gone.

Even at dinner Tom was nowhere to be seen and this panicked her, what if Diávolos had taken him like he had taken Timmy? Well he had turned up for the activities, so why was he avoiding her? So many questions. Tom never missed a meal which meant that there must be something up with him. As his best friend, it was Athena’s job to find out.

After dinner at seven she resumed her search for him alone. But once she had searched everywhere else it was eight in the evening and everyone had departed their cabins for the party. All the girls had dressed up and some wore a bit or a lot of makeup, even the boys had made an effort. Some of them had gelled their hair or else dressed up in smart casual clothing.

Dejectedly, she went back to her cabin ground, but upon arrival the figure of Thomas Noble loomed in the only just darkening sky. Leaning solemnly on his hand whilst sat upon the small veranda, he glared up and saw her edging slowly towards him.

“Tom?” she said uncertainly walking up the wooden lodged steps.

“Hello Thee” he droned

“Okay, what’s up? You didn’t show up to visit me, you didn’t show up to dinner and you keep on avoiding me, what is going on?”

He sighed

“I don’t know”

“Tom” she said sternly

“Look, I’m confused I...” he trailed off. Fear was in his eyes, as clear as a bright burning fire, but it was dark. The flame was burnt out and cold.

“Are you...scared?”

“Not for me” he defended “for you”

“For me?”


“But why?”

“Well, we’re going to have to fight, I don’t care if I get hurt but you-” he broke off “you’re too precious”

“Come again?”

“You’re my best friend in the whole wide world and you; thinking-knowing- you’re in breaks me” Athena felt more sympathy after that and any mild resentment had gone.

“You’ll always be my best friend no matter what, and I’ll always be here for you because that’s what friends are for, right?” Athena was saying

“Right” Tom agreed

“And whether we get hurt or whether we don’t, we’ll keep on fighting for what’s right, we’ll battle until the bitter end and, all along, you’ll be there and I’ll be there and we’ll both be where we need to be: together.”

Tom was silent

“I love you Athena” he hugged her tight

“I love you too, Tom” they truly were best friends “come on, let’s go”

“Go where?”

“To the party”

“Urr...” he stuttered “I don’t think I...”

“Oh come on, it’ll be fun”

“I didn’t plan-I wasn’t planning- on going actually”

“Please Tom”

“What’s there to celebrate?” ‘Good question’ she thought

“You’ll have to face the music sometime”

“Then sometime can wait” he stated, she sighed

“If you’re not gonna do it for yourself, will you at least do it for me, and for the others” pleaded Athena, Tom sighed

“Okay, fine


“But what about our clothes?” Tom had a point. They looked down at themselves in synchronisation. Athena was wearing a navy blue top, skinny jeans, her trusty red hoodie and her daily red converse. Tom had on a white t-shirt and a navy blue hooded jacket with his jeans and converse too. They weren’t exactly smart casual.

“Who cares?”

“Good point” hand in hand, they set off for the main block.


The night was hot and the brisk breeze blew gently through the rippling leaves of the trees. It was a soft, delicate moment. Spiralling round each other, the trees were shaking hands to the last night of an endless summer. Their pulsating hearts beat with every rhythm of the songs that blasted from inside the hall, only slightly destroying the valuable moment. Predictably, their branches danced in the pale moonlight that dwindled miraculously through the echoed gaps in the canopy. Lightly, they felt courage wash over them.

Athena and Tom approached the scene, oblivious to the tree’s high spirits.

Happily, they ventured inside.

Immediately, Tom crashed out awkwardly on the bench by the entrance door inside the hall.

Emma rushed over with Robbie and Liam hot on her heels.

“Tom, Athena, you came! Where’ve you been?”

“Nowhere really” Tom confirmed

“You look nice Em” Athena grinned; she blushed and uttered a ‘thank you’. Emerald green was the colour of the summer dress she wore and she had brown sandals that suited her perfectly and a blissful white cardigan was draped over her shoulders. Her fiery hair glistened. Liam just wore jeans and a smart jumper-like top and as for Robbie, the girls swooned at his three quarter length checked shirt and midnight black skinny jeans.

What Emma declared to be her favourite song came on and she disappeared with Liam to dance with Persy, Alex and Maria, but Robbie hung back. He whispered something to Tom and they had an awkward pat-on-the-back man hug before Robbie disappeared too, girl’s eyes trailing after him.

“We should go too” Athena declared

“You know I can’t dance”

“When has that ever stopped you?”

“You go”

“Not without you”

“I came for you, now you go dance with them for me”


Then Tom’s favourite song came on: American Idiot by Green Day.

“This is your favourite, come on” Athena pulled him up and Tom willingly followed.

The two danced like fools through the entire thing, along with Emma, Robbie, Liam, Persy, Alex and Maria too.

Athena spotted Timmy dancing with his friends in the middle, he cheerily waved to her and she returned it. Chloe Noble was having a blast with her troop of Phoenixes and as for Leon, he went crazy, but still looked unbelievable cool and still handsome.

Everyone seemed to be having the time of their lives, despite what was to come. Even in the midst of all evil, hope could be found and here it was. Live, fresh and young hope, just the way it should be.

Who knew what Diávolos was doing now? Who knew where he was? But right now, who cared? It was a moment of blissful naivety and there was nothing better. A moment of happiness sparked a flame in a fire of eternal memories. A fire so high, only the gods could feel its highest glowing embers. A fire so vast that no water could settle it. Although that fire blazed passionately now, and it could be reduced to a flame in an instant, but no one would let the flame burn out, at least not now and hopefully not ever. It would burn forever. 

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