I stepped forward, going to the pedestal where the pieces of the staff lay.
“So, um,” I began, “How exactly do I do this?”
“It is like any device, put it together logically,” Zeus said.
“So, no special incantation or glue or anything?” I asked.
Zeus chortled, “No child, none of that.” First I took the long metal pole in my hands, remembering Oreithyia, Thalia and Annabeth. I prayed that they were alright.
Then I took the ring of Poseidon thanking it for saving my life and capped the rod with it. It was a perfect fit. I hadn’t noticed the tiny ridge on the top of the rod, which prevented the ring from sliding down any further and left a few centimeter of space above. When the ring was in place, the staff throbbed, glowing white for a second. The ring was now set permanently in place.
Next I picked up the crown, it spiky black thorn-like detail. They pierced into my hand, drawing a little blood.
I turned to Nico who nodded encouragingly.
I placed the crown atop the ring, it fit perfectly in place. A second throb and white glow, the crown was now set, the symbol of the big three in place.
Finally I took the white orb in my hand, it was fully repaired in its original form and I took it, set it atop the black briar-like top of the crown. I rested into place and there was a third and final throb, this one the strongest. The staff was complete.
There was a small divet in the floor in front of me and I placed the staff there to keep it upright.
I turned to Zeus, “What now?”
“Now, Lea,” he said, “It’s time for you to become a demi-god again.”
I reached up to my necklace caressing it softly.
“Press the jewel,” said Zeus.
I took a deep breath following his command and pressed the small pink ruby. It slid inward slightly, clicking into place.
I took one last look at Nico and he smiled.
Suddenly, pink light began to spill from the jewel, and from my chest and hand where the necklace was touching a gold web spread out across my skin.
The pink light gushed like a waterfall from the jewel pooling at my feet and then swirling back up growing around me. The golden light was spreading out over my skin gradually, leaving my feeling reenergized and my skin with more color and less imperfections. My scars disappeared and I grew stronger. My immortal lineage was coming back to me.
I rose off the ground the power whiling around me, causing my feet to lift from the floor.
I looked up as the golden webbed spread up my neck and for a second I blacked out.
When I awoke I was on the floor of Olympus.
What is Hades name was I doing on Olympus?
I looked up to see Zeus staring at me curiously, “Zeus!” I yelled, “What do you want?”
This guy seriously had the nerve to pull me up to Olympus when I was busy fighting Venti.
“Zeus,” I shouted, “Put me back in the Stature of Libery, Venti are attacking and I dropped my sword.”
“I know child,” he said calmly, “Please calm down.”
“Calm down?” I sputtered, “Calm down! My best-friend is missing!”
I felt a hand on my shoulder.
I whipped around to see Nico staring at me.
“Nico!” I exclaimed,” Oh thank the gods you’re okay, I was so worried. I thought you were trapped. We have to go, the underworld has been taken over!”
I hugged him tightly, he looked older than I remembered and I had no idea why he was wearing armor, but I was so relived to see him I didn’t care. I hardly even noticed.
My mind was stuck in the past, my brain had returned to the exact point I was when I had lost the gemstone. The physcic link had done its job, restoring me to one year ago both physically and mentally.
“Lea,” he said, “The Underworld has been restored. Your just going to have to listen and believe me right now even though its gonna sound insane.”
“Uh, okay,” I agreed.
“It’s one year in the future, we need you to take this staff,” he said putting the newly assembled relic in my hand, “And follow Zeus.”
“What?” I asked, totally confused.
“You know what? I’m just going to go ahead and accept it,” I agreed, “I’ve been faced with much weirder situations.”
Nico smiled and looked at Zeus.
Zeus stood from his throne and walked to the left of the room, there was a small path leading around to the back, just behind the throne room.
“Lea, follow that path, when you have arrived at the end, summon all of your powers, picture yourself using the staff and think I wish to put all of my enemies to sleep.’ Think that and only that. Use the staff as a microphone of sorts, you will know when you feel it.”
“That’s it?” I asked.
“Yes,” said Zeus, “Follow those instructions exactly.”
I grabbed Nico’s hand and said, “Let’s go.”
I began to walk but he stayed in place, looking at Zeus with sadness in his eyes.
“You’re gonna have to do this alone,” said Nico.
Somehow, I understood, I squeezed Nico’s hand and then let go.
I gave him one last look and walked out of the Throne Room, up the small pathway. The marble path, had no railing and was only abut three feet wide, clearly it was meant for one person to walk alone. One person with balance and no fear of heights. It wrapped around the side of the Throne Room and to the very back. At the end of the path way simple round dead end. It was only about a four foot wide circle and of course there were no railings.
Gods, I would really have to talk to Annabeth about her lack of safety precautions, this definitely was not up to code.
I looked up at the sky, it was every color I’d ever seen on the horizon, all at once. Something big was going on and all though I didn’t know what it was, I knew it had to end.
I took a deep breath remembering what Zeus had said, I took the staff in both hands, holding it in front of me.
With my feet should width apart, I closed my eyes.
I though to myself repeatedly, “I wish for my enemies to sleep for eternity.”
I felt my powers begin to churn inside me, pulsing through my veins, something about he staff made me feel stronger like I was Lea 2.0 or something.
I took another deep breath, still repeating my wish in my head. Through my closed eyelids I could feel myself glowing pink, it grew stronger and stronger. I almost lost control and ost my thought process, but I pulled back.
Then the power surged and my eyes shot open, everything around me was pink, I was a beacon of power, the orb on the staff which was once white now matched the color of my eyes.
My hair whipped around in a torrent, and I felt myself loose my grip.
As if some sort of centrifugal force was pulling me apart from the inside.
It began to grow painful.
“My enemies will sleep!” I said, and then with more force as if my words could contain me I screamed “Vade, et dormi!”
There was a blast of pink light that erupted from me, a circular wave of power exploded outward shooting out past the horizon.
The light around me faded, and I looked at my hands a golden web was receding over my body. My skin grew paler and less vibrant. Scars and freckles began to appear. I felt tired, more tired than ever before and my head throbbed, memories of the past year rushing back. The spell of my necklace was fading and I was returning to my mortal form. I stumbled forward blacking out slightly and fumbled about some more. Everything was in pain, everything hurt so much, I was so tired.
I stepped forward, my vision cloudy. My head throbbed and I forgot where I was.
I forgot that I was on a small ledge hundreds of feet above the city; and there were no rails. I stepped forward again, trying to find something to hold on to.
But there was nothing there to lean against and nothing there to catch me when I fell.