Sounds Like Love to Me!

Nico can't sleep. AT ALL. This is partially due to the fact that he keeps thinking of Will. But it can't be love. Can it? (Has some swearwords)

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1. Sleep is Hard

The red sheets of my coffin bed press gently on the undersides of my limbs as I lay there, still as death. Moonlight hits my father’s jewel-covered shrine, glinting coldly off of various precious metals.

I flip over, so that my stomach presses into the mattress instead of my back. Ugh. What’s the time? I turn to look at my bone-shaped alarm.

3:00, AM.

Too late. The time is too late. But what else is new?

I bury my face into the scarlet bedding. Usually, I nod off around 12. Why is it so fucking hard to sleep tonight?

A wise little voice at the back of my head whispers the answer: You can’t sleep, because you keep thinking of Solace, dumbass.

And even in the wee hours of the morn, even with my brain muddled from lack of sleep, I know the voice is right. But I still suppress it, silence it, because if I’m thinking about him like this, it means that-No! No! Don’t think about that! Solace, like Percy before him, is too good, to nice, too...him to like me. And even though I’ve made up with Percy, even though my secret is out, it still hurts. It hurts in the space between my ribs, it nags at the back of my mind. Solace probably has an Annabeth, one who is ready to love him, better and more fully than I ever can. So, bundle that though up and tight, place it in the bottom of your stomach and think of something else.

But what else is there to think of?

 

...I should probably take a walk, clear my head. Maybe the cool night air will blow away these intruding theories, leaving me in peace.

I pad over to my door, sliding it open and slipping out into the night. A leap over the mini-staircase before my door, and then I’m free. The dew-stained lawn is cold on my feet, and a refreshing wind winds around the trees. I smile, content. Stretching my arms over my head, I look up at the still-dark sky, little needle points of light embroidering the constellations. Aries, Sagittarius, and Ursa Major by her little cub. Mother and cub- like Bianca and I. But that thought hurts, so I take a deep breath, bundle all my bad memories into my stomach, and keep going. But I keep thinking of her. Bianca, I mean. I do think of her more now, I talk about to people (Hazel. Hazel is people.) about her, but not usually, because it still hurts. So I bundle all of memories of her, memories of how I acted after she died, how wrong life was, how wrong was to do what I did- all of that, into a little box and then shipped it to my stomach. I always feel a bit better when I do that, though my chest does get a little  tighter.

I walk forward, because sleep is a forsaken battle and my cabin is so, so hot, and way too cramped. But before I can go very far, something pulls me back onto the staircase. With my free hand, I go for my sword-but I’m in my pj's. So I reach into my pocket for the knife I keep there, unsheathe the celestial bronze weapon, and try to stab it. It blocks me, so I kick backwards. It lets go. I turn around, ready to finish it off, but the thing's not a monster, it’s Will Solace.

Oh no. I just attacked my...friend. My friend Will Solace. I put my blade back into its sheath.

“It’s you,” I say, sounding rather more put out than I am. “Why are you even here?’

Will smiles sheepishly, completely unfazed (as always) by my coarse language. “You’ve been sleep-walking a lot lately, and doctor Will doesn’t think a harpy attack would be very good for your health.” Still a bit apologetic, the blonde looks up to me with clear blue eyes, hoping that I’ll understand.

I offer him my hand. “It’s not like you’re completely safe from the harpies either, Solace.”

He smiles, and takes my outstretched hand into the warmth of his.

Despite myself, I smile.

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