Angelique almost fell asleep after the Muses had appeared.
The moment that the goddess' of inspiration had stopped talking about how wonderful Angelique was, they instantly started bickering about who inspired her more. It almost felt like calling the Muses was a waste of their time. They had been bickering for almost a full day.
Nico had emerged from the depths of the Las Vegas Bay, sopping wet, only to be greeted by nine arguing goddess' and the rest of the gang sitting on the ground with their heads in their hands. Instead of enduring the bickering goddess', he laid down next to his boyfriend and took a nap. Will groaned in agony as they kept going on and on about how great each of them were and, oddly enough, on who was Angelique's godmother. For all she knew, Angelique didn't have a godmother. If she did, her mother didn't talk about it.
"It has to be me!" Erato, Muse of Love poetry, exclaimed.
"Oh, come off it, Erato!" Calliope, Muse of Epics, said. "You can't be– too much love in your poetry!"
"Of course you would say that, Calliope! Muse of Epics!" Thalia, Muse of comedy, said.
"We all know it wouldn't be you, Thalia! She can't tell a joke worth even one Drachma!" Polyhymnia, Muse of sacred poetry, spat.
"I never!" Thalia exclaimed with a gasp, hand on her chest and her other holding the mask.
"It must be me! She has such an interest in music!" Euterpe, Muse of music, said.
"Be quiet, Euterpe!" Terpsichore, Muse of Dance, spat.
"Well, it obviously isn't you, Terpsichore," Euterpe spat back.
"Euterpe is right, she has such stage fright; I don't think she'd ever dance in public," Urania, Muse of Astronomy, said.
"Thank you, Urania," Euterpe said.
"Can you please shut up!" Angelique shouted as she jolted up from the ground. "We don't have time for this!"
Will groaned, rubbing his temples. "That was giving me a migraine…"
"Are they done now?" Nico said as he sat up.
"And I thought the nuns were annoying…" Alex muttered.
"Now, can you please help us find my dad's lyre?" Angelique asked, calming down. "We only have a few more days!"
"Oh, of course, darling!" Clio, Muse of History, said.
"I think it would have been a much better story if we didn't, though," Melpomene, Muse of Tragedy, said.
"You always say that, Melpomene!" Thalia whined. "It's never funny!"
"At least I don't joke around all the time!" Melpomene said, crossing her arms.
"Stop it before my brain explodes!" Will hissed.
"Oh, I know you!" Erato said, pointing to Will. "I helped this adorable, young son of Hades write such an adorable, yet romantic poem to you!"
"So that's why that poem was so sappy," Will said, turning his head towards Nico.
"Hades is the god of riches and the underworld," Nico said, "Not creativity."
"It's a good thing I came along, then, wasn't it?" Erato said.
"Can we get to the point?" Lillyan said, annoyed.
"Ah, yes," Calliope began. "Apollo's stolen Lyre."
Melpomene sighed. "I wish this quest had more," She paused. "Tragedy."
"This isn't a tragedy, Melpomene!" Calliope said. "It's more of an Epic!"
Angelique groaned loudly.
"This," Camlo said. "Is getting us nowhere."
"Look," Alex said, getting impatient. "They were told in a prophecy that you girls were going to lead them to find the Lyre– So where is it?" She spat.
"Oh, calm down, child of ghosts," Clio said. "We're getting to that."
"Not really," Nico said before he laid back down on his back. "Wake me when they cooperate."
"Night, babe," Will said, continuing to rub his temples.
"Aw, look at how adorable these two are!" Erato said, clasping her hands together with a smile.
"Oh, my gods, just tell us where to look!" Lillyan hissed.
"What are you talking about?" Clio asked. "Apollo already gave your answer."
"He couldn't have been more direct if he tried," Urania said.
"What do you mean?" Angelique asked, stepping closer to the Muses.
"Your dreams, silly girl!" Polyhymnia said. "Where's the one place you've seen the most in your dreams?"
Angelique stared in disbelief. "The Grand Canyon."
"Ding, ding, ding!" Thalia said, holding her laughing mask in the air. "We got a ringer!"
"Now, about the song you'll need to locate it…" Euterpe said, tapping her chin. She thought for a moment. "I believe you'll need to play the Delphic Hymns."
"Finally!" Lillyan said, flopping onto her back.
"Delphic Hymns, got it," Will said, quickly grabbing his book of songs and trying to find them.
"Of course, you'll need to play it on the pan flute that your father gave you," Clio said, pointing to the instrument in question.
"Remember, you're not out of the woods yet," Melpomene said. "Murphy's law: What can go wrong, will go wrong." After she said that, all nine Muses shot back up into the sky.
It was getting dark once again, wasting another valuable day. They had two days, and Angelique knew it was going to take much longer than that. Opal had managed to get untied from the tree Camlo had tied him to and flown off, leaving them without transportation. Angelique sighed.
Will woke Nico up as the sun started to set. They began to think of a game plan.
"How are we going to get there?" Camlo asked. "Opal's gone– bratty, flying horse…"
"We are not shadow traveling, Nico!" Will hissed.
"I can do it!"
"Not a chance, Di Angelo!"
"Absolutely, positively, NO!" Will shouted.
"Shadow travel?" Angelique asked.
"It's a thing that kids of Hades can do," Alex said. "Nico did it to bring the Athena Parthenos to Camp, but–!"
"He almost disappeared in the process!" Will hissed. "I'm not letting that happen again!"
"I am fully capable to shadow travel everyone here to the Grand Canyon," Nico argued. "If I can take a huge statue of Athena from Rome to Long Island, I think I can take five demigods a couple hundred miles, give or take."
"I'm not losing you!"
"You're not going to lose me, Will," Nico said, taking hold of Will's hand.
They were so adorable, but they had to find a way to the Grand Canyon in time and get back to New York before Apollo started a war with Hermes, and Nico shadow traveling them was their best bet.
"I think we should do it," Angelique said.
"Are you insane?" Will said to her.
"I don't know how dangerous shadow travel is–!"
"Then why are you agreeing with him?"
"Let me finish, William!" Angelique hissed. "I don't know how dangerous shadow traveling is, but it's the only shot we got– gods, I can't believe I made that rhyme…"
"There has to be another way," Will said.
"No, there's not," Alex said. "It's either we shadow travel, or allow a war of the gods."
"When did you become so jaded?" Lillyan asked, getting up and looking at the daughter of Hades.
"Since I started using shadow travel," Alex said.
Lillyan didn't have a comeback to that.
"So, here's the plan," Camlo began. "We go to bed, get rested up, then in the morning we shadow travel to the Grand Canyon, find the Lyre and then shadow travel to the Empire State Building."
"Empire State Building? Why there?" Angelique asked.
"That's the entrance to Olympus," Will explained. "I still say it's too dangerous."
"We don't have a choice," Alex said.
Angelique knew that Will didn't like the idea, not at all, but he must have known that they needed to do it to complete the quest. He sighed and got up.
"Alright, we leave in the morning," He said before turning to go think by the Bay.
Nico followed him. Angelique knew that he was upset, she knew that he didn't want to lose anyone, let alone his boyfriend. After all, as a medic at Camp, Will must have gone through a lot of death and loss. It was like Melpomene had put a touch of tragedy into this quest while they weren't looking. Angelique felt bad for him.
Lillyan started a fire in the cover of trees close to the Bay, far away enough that no humans could find them. Camlo set up the tents while Angelique and Alex watched Nico and Will talk by the Las Vegas Bay.
"Nico doesn't like upsetting Will," Alex said to Angelique.
"I bet," Angelique said. "Will must be scared, though," Alex looked at her. "He must have so many thoughts going through his head…"
"There must have been so many patients that he couldn't save," Alex added.
Angelique nodded. "He witnessed our half-brother, Michael Yew, leave and never return. I never knew him, but it must have been hard to lose anyone close."
"Nico knows that pain," Alex said.
"Really?" Angelique asked. "I would ask, but I guess it's not my business."
"You're really considerate about that stuff, Angelique."
"You think so?" Angelique asked. Alex nodded. "Thanks, Alex; it means a lot to hear that from you."
"Do you think Will is going to be okay?" Alex asked.
"I don't know the answer to that, Alex," Angelique admitted. "We're just going to have to find out."