Leo’s appearance came as a shock to everyone, though Hazel had to admit that it was more of one for her than she’d expect.
It was strange. When she looked at him, his scruffy hair and bright, mischievous eyes, he reminded her so much of his great-grandfather, Sammy it was scary.
But she’d gotten over all that - hadn't she?
Part of her knew she never would. Part of her would always be stuck in 1900’s Louisiana.
She tried to concentrate of the present. That was always the only thing that could keep her together.
Beside her, Frank glanced her way and took her hand. Either he could sense her discomfort or he was uncomfortable himself.
Hazel decided to go with the first option.
She watched as Leo took in what Percy had said. He clearly didn’t like the idea, and Hazel couldn’t blame him. She would surely feel the same, and Leo had been through much more than she had.
“So, we’ve got an oceanic threat. No boat,” Leo said, breaking her thoughts. “We’re getting there how?”
No one spoke and everyone looked at each other in bewilderment. Clearly, none of them had considered this small hitch in the quest.
“How long do you think it would take to build another ship? The Argo III.” Jason spoke slowly as if afraid of Leo’s answer.
“I don’t know if the ocean is a good travel option,” Percy interjected. “With Gaea, we had to avoid the earth, remember? With this, Oceanus being the titan of water and all, we might want to pick something else.”
It made sense. Hazel noticed as Jason shifted on his feet, making a face like he felt stupid for even making the suggestion. Of course they couldn’t travel by boat. That’d be suicide.
“So, air it is then?” she asked.
Annabeth was the one to figure out the last pieces of the prophecy.
“There’s going to be an eclipse,” she said the next morning, racing up to where Hazel, Jason, and Percy were sitting sleepily on the Dining Pavilion steps.
“Huh?” they all said in unison.
“A veil of light the world shall shed,” she recited. “There’s an eclipse due in a month, September twenty-second. That’s our deadline.”
The three stared at her groggily, only half understanding her discovery.
“So we need to leave soon is what you’re saying.” Hazel didn’t like the sound of an eclipse. There was something foreboding about the idea of the moon blocking out the sun.
“Can I eat breakfast first?” Percy said.
“Yeah, and lunch maybe,” Jason added. “In fact, can we just stay for dinner too?”
Annabeth rolled her eyes. “You two are impossible.”
“Hey, we need our nourishment.”
“So, there’s only one more piece we don’t know now,” Hazel said, bringing the conversation back to the quest.
“Actually, I have a hunch about that one too.” Annabeth paused and looked at Percy. “Calypso.”
Everyone looked at her in surprise. But, as Hazel thought about it, it began to make sense.
“She is forgotten, if you consider that the gods literally forgot about her and no one really knows she exists anymore.”
“So you’re saying maybe she’s meant to come with us? Maybe something happens to break her immortality.”
“We need to tell the others,” Jason said.
“About the eclipse, yes,” Percy agreed. “But we might want to keep the whole ‘dying goddess’ thing to ourselves for now.”
“I agree. Leo would never let Calypso go if he knew she might be in danger,” Hazel said. The last thing she wanted to do was lie to Leo, but she also knew that Percy was right.
“Well, I mean, technically we’re all in danger but,” Jason muttered. “I gotcha.”
There was no further objection - well, too little that is for anyone to say no.
“So we leave in the morning?” Annabeth said.
“Let’s rally the troops.”