A Restless Night
It was the end of yet another long, tiring day of training, practice and an extra rough game of capture the flag. Every muscle ached and I was covered in scraps, bruises and that cut on my left arm, generously given by one of Ares' kids, was probably gonna leave a scar. I shuffled and dragged my feet into Cabin 11, Hermes Cabin. I had been claimed, but as the daughter of a minor goddess, Philia, I am destined to remain in the most crowded and worn out cabin in all of Camp Half-Blood.
Barely making it to my bed, I collapsed and was out before my head hit the pillow. That's when I had one of the strangest dreams I've ever had, and coming from a demigod that's saying a lot.
I was standing in a pure white room, well floating probably would be more accurate, then she appeared. Hera, Queen of Olympus, was suddenly there infront of me. Personally I have nothing against her, or anyone really, it's not in my nature, but Hera being in my dream had me really unnerved and I was almost overcome with the urge to yell at her and tell her to leave me alone.
"Hello, Lillian." she said with that soft, motherly sort of smile.
"Hello, Hera." I replied dumbly. I had no idea why she decided to appear before me.
"I'm here to give you a quest." she said, suddenly the urge to scream at her got stronger and I realized why. My instincts were all on fire and telling me to run and run fast.
"Wh-what sort of quest?" I asked, the fear I realized I was feeling evident in my voice.
"A diplomatic sort of quest." Hera replied, still maintaining that sweet motherly smile, but the longer I looked the more the smile seemed to be taunting and cruel instead.
"What do you mean, diplomatic? With who?" I asked, though it sounded more like a demand in that empty white space.
"With the Romans." was Hera's calm and patient reply.
"What Romans?" I asked, getting more and more confused.
"You know that when Rome came to power, they 'adopted' us Greek gods and gave us new names, yes?" Hera asked. I nodded. "Well, when we all became Roman gods, we took on new personalities and became, well, Roman."
"So why send me?" I couldn't help but ask, though I felt I already knew the reason.
"Because you're a child of Philia, of Friendship." Hera said simply.
"But why haven't we known about the Roman demigods before?" I asked.
"Because Greeks and Romans have never been good at getting along, that's where you come in, Lillian." Hera said. "Go and speak with the Oracle in the morning and get your prophecy."
The dream ended and I sat bolt upright in my bed, sweating a cold sweat and feeling even more exhausted than ever before. A light blinded me for a few moments, then I realized that it was already morning.
"Damnit..." I sighed.
My Talk with the Oracle
The first thing I did after realizing that it was morning was speak to Damian, the current Hermes Cabin Head Counselor, and he told me that, though he didn't like the idea, it was a vision from Hera and that I should definitely go talk to Mr. D and Chiron then go and see the Oracle.
"I still don't like the sound of this quest, Lil." he called as I headed for the Big House. "But I also don't like the idea of telling the one of the most powerful goddesses 'no'."
I got to the Big House and found Mr. D and Chiron and quickly told them my dream and what Damian said about it. Mr. D was his usual self, disconsolely drinking his Diet Coke, and Chiron looked worried about the prospect and agreed with what Damian had said, both the bad feeling about the quest and how it was probably a bad idea to turn down a direct request from Hera.
"Go and see what the Oracle has to say." Chiron sighed, still unhappy about the quest. He gestured towards the stairs that lead to the attic. It was musty and dusty in the attic and The Oracle was where she always was, shriveled up over in the chair in the corner. Before I could speak she spewed that green smoke from her mouth and a voice echoed through the space.
Guided by Thief and Fear
Child of Philia must Steer
Diplomacy already is Frail
With the End of Boundary the Quest may Fail
Pretty Words shant win the Day
Through Force of Arms one must Pay
End of Friendship, Thief and Fear
End of Justice and Fraud make all Unclear
The smoke faded away and I felt sick to my stomach. The prophecy sounded like there was absolutely no hope of success to this quest Hera had given me, but what choice did I have? I have been ordered by the Lady of the House, herself to go on this mission to California.
"But what is this Fear she kept mentioning?" I muttered as I went back downstairs to tell Chiron what The Oracle said.
- Hera means Lady of the House in Greek