Shadow travel wasn't all that great the second time. Actually, it was just the same as the first time. It was dark, cold, and really scary.
When they landed, Angelique immediately let go of Alex and Lillyan's hands and fell flat on her stomach. She groaned as she got up, looking around to see a green empty field with cows grazing around them.
"Wait, when did New York have…?" Angelique trailed off as the idea that Nico may not have taken them directly to the Empire State Building crossed her mind.
"Nico, where did you take us?" Camlo asked. "This doesn't look like smog and skyscrapers."
"That's because we didn't reach New York, you idiot," Lillyan said, annoyed, as she sat up. "He took us to Pennsylvania."
"Do we have the Lyre?" Alex asked, getting up.
Will held the golden instrument up. "Right here," He said.
"I suppose Nico can't continue?" Angelique asked. "Shadow traveling, I mean."
"Of course not," Will said, glaring at said child of Hades. "Because he's an idiot."
Nico pointed in the air. "We already established this, Will," His arm fell back down to the ground.
"My question is," Angelique began. "How are we going to get there now?"
The group was silent.
"Why do quests have to give us a set time frame?" Lillyan groaned, throwing her hands in the air. "We always barely make it!"
"Well, maybe if someone didn't steal the Lyre…" Camlo mumbled.
"I didn't steal it!" Lillyan hissed, turning towards Camlo.
"I wasn't saying it was you!" Camlo spat back, propped up by his elbows on his back. "We already established it wasn't you! It was a stupid redhead!"
"What's so bad about redheads?" Alex asked, patting herself off.
"They have no souls," Lillyan explained.
"My mom was a redhead," Alex said.
"Awkward…" Will muttered.
"Cam, you're stupid," Lillyan commented. Camlo opened his mouth to say something only to be interrupted by Angelique.
"Can we stop arguing and find a way to get Dad's Lyre back to him?" She asked.
"Easy fix," Alex said, casually. " I take them on my own."
"Are you nuts?!" Will screamed.
"A little bit, yeah," Alex said with a nod.
Will glared at her.
"Look, the prophecy says I'm supposed to go with them to Olympus, right?" Alex explained. "They don't say anything about you two, right?"
"She's got a point," Lillyan pointed out.
"Then I take them, they get the Lyre back in time, and we're all good, 'kay? 'Kay; let's go," Alex said, gesturing the trio to move.
"I still don't think this is a good idea!" Will shouted as they walked away.
"Oh, calm down," Alex said. "I'll be fine."
"That's what Nico says!" Will shouted. "He's never fine!"
"Will doesn't seem happy with you," Angelique stated when they got out of earshot.
"Eh," Alex shrugged. "It's been a long trip."
"So where are we going now?" Camlo asked as they walked.
"Going a little farther from Will and Nico," Alex said. "We get closer to our destination, the less tiring it is for me."
"Good to know," Angelique said.
"Here's good," Lillyan said, looking down at her pocket watch.
"What?" Angelique asked.
"There's a town ahead," Lillyan said. "We don't want to have to go into the town and suddenly disappear in an alley, do we?"
"How do you know that?" Angelique asked.
"My pocket watch," Lillyan said, holding it up. "It tells our location in longitude and latitude and identifies towns and cities in range. It's also a moon chart, compass, stopwatch, and a regular pocket watch."
"Neat," Angelique said simply.
"I know, right?" Lillyan said. "Best birthday gift from my dad ever!"
"Guys, we gotta go," Alex said. "You can talk gadgets later."
"Linking hands?" Camlo asked.
"Linking hands," Alex said, holding hers out.
Angelique grabbed Alex's hand, Lillyan grabbing hers and Camlo grabbing Lillyan's and Alex's. In a split second, the quartet had entered the shadows, everyone with closed eyes.
The next minute, Angelique catapulted from the side of one building to the roof of the next in her general direction. She barrel rolled until she crashed into a wall– well, she thought it was a wall.
"Ow," Angelique muttered as she got up painfully.
Angelique heard a thump next to her. Then she heard a heavier thump and a lighter thump afterwards. "Fuck!" She heard Lillyan's voice say. "Why did you catapult us through?" Lillyan shouted at Alex.
"It's not my fault I just learned how to shadow travel a week ago!" Alex shouted back.
"Couldn't you have made your landings better?" Camlo asked. He got up from his upside down position.
"Shadow traveling isn't the most pleasant for a Hades kid, you know!" Alex spat back, a little woozy sounding. "It's not like I can use it all the time! It's tiring! And I need a nap, good night," She added before passing out.
"Let's keep going," Lillyan said, with the Lyre.
"Wait, I thought Will had it," Angelique said, now remembering.
"I'm a kid of Hermes," Lillyan said. "I can pick pocket; however, I don't steal what I don't need– and right now, we really need to get the Lyre back, so let's go!"
"What about Alex?" Camlo asked, slightly concerned for the daughter of Hades in question.
"You can carry her," Lillyan said, starting to climb down the fire escape and the Lyre strapped to her back.
"Why me?" Camlo whined.
"Because I'm carrying the Lyre and Angelique can't carry crap," Lillyan explained. "Sorry, sunshine, but it's true."
Angelique just shrugged. "I know it's true," She said.
"Alright, fine," Camlo sighed. He put her on his back and started going down the fire escape. Angelique followed behind him.
They reached the bottom of the building in an alleyway, greeted only by an irritated child of Hermes. She was hitting her pocket watch and swearing under her breath. Angelique could hear a faint spinning coming from her watch.
"Stupid thing," Lillyan muttered, now shaking it. "Tell me where to go, you stupid watch!"
"You were just talking about how great it was two minutes ago," Camlo said.
"What's going on, Lil?" Angelique asked, curious.
"The hands to tell me where to go are just spinning and spinning and spinning and… You get the point, I don't even know if we're in New York!"
"We're in New York, that's for sure," Camlo pointed out. "From the roof, I could see the Empire State Building," Lillyan stared at Camlo. "What?"
"Why didn't you say something earlier?" Lillyan hissed.
"I thought you knew," Camlo said, slightly confused.
Angelique face-palmed. Why was the guy she had a crush on so stupid?
"Whatever– which way, numbnuts?" Lillyan growled.
"Uh, I think that way," Camlo said, pointing to his left in front of him.
"How far do you think it is?" Angelique asked Camlo.
"Do you really think he knows the answer to that?" Lillyan said.
"Good point," Angelique said.
"Hey!" Camlo said, defensively. "That's hurtful!"
"Sorry, but it's true," Angelique said.
"I'm not sorry," Lillyan said. "But it's still true."
"Oh, I know you're not sorry, you're never sorry for insulting me."
"Can we go?" Angelique said. "Like, now?"
"Oh, right," Camlo said, thinking. "Lyre first, discussion later."
"Exactly!" Angelique said, walking out of the alley and onto the sidewalk. "Now hurry it up before all Hades breaks loose!"
"Sunshine," Lillyan began. "You're not the one with the solid gold Lyre and a preteen on your back."
"Doesn't mean the situation isn't as urgent!" Angelique said as she walked backwards, Lillyan and Camlo following behind. "We barely have a day, Lil! We need to get there, and fast! War is bad, Peace is good! Let's go," She added quickly.
"You have a lot of energy right now," Camlo pointed out. "Are you okay?"
"Yeah, never better, let's just get the Lyre back to my dad and save humanity!" Angelique said quickly. "It also might be the fact that we're getting close to the deadline and I don't like hitting the very last minutes of a deadline and–!"
"Okay, we get it," Lillyan said, sounding slightly annoyed. "You're getting hyper."
"That's good to know," Camlo added. "It might be a good thing."
"You honestly don't believe that, do you?" Lillyan asked, turning her head towards Camlo.
"Well, yeah, it could be," Camlo answered. "I mean, quick thinking, right?"
"You really don't understand it's more of a bad thing, do you?"
Camlo paused. "Maybe," He said quickly.
Angelique, afterwards, turned back around to walk forward normally, only to hear the sound of hissing. She stopped, wondering why there were snakes in New York. Then she listened to her demigod gut and realized it was probably a monster.
"There's a monster afoot," Angelique said, Lillyan and Camlo standing to the right and left of her.
"Actually," Camlo began. "I think it's a drakon."