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To Kidnap a King

Francesca

Chapter Five

She Who Washes Away Pain

“We’re going to be alright,” She said, looking down to the other girl, “Once this whole problem is over, we’ll be alright.” they both smiled as they continued to walk down the corridor…away from the room which still stuck in Piper’s memory, but one thing she thought, even though she knew she shouldn’t be thinking, after all, he is the enemy.

Is he going to be alright?

Francesca looked around cautiously, she knew that she shouldn’t be doing this…but she owed Tom, the least she could do was to heal his half-brother. And no matter how much hatred she had towards Rome and its leaders, she still owed Tom.

“You’ve got the praetor?” A boy said with black hair and electric blue eyes said, Francesca, across from him nodded as she stared up at the ceiling above her, admiring the painted patterns of the gods.

“Yeah,” she said, putting her hands behind her and pushing herself up onto her arms, smiling as she did so. She looked across to her companion and asked, “What’s wrong Tom? You seem worried.”

“Its nothing,” Tom assured her, when she sent a pointed look to him he sighed and gave in, “The praetor, what’s their name?”

“Jason Grace.” Francesca replied, looking down and twisting the old shirt between her hands. But when she looked to Tom for a moment she saw his face, it was thoughtful, regretful but yet it held an element of…excitement?

“Tom what is it?” She said gently, reaching across to place her hand on his arm, when he shook his head and rolled her eyes and said, “look, something’s up, I know it.”

Sighing into submission Tom placed his other hand over Francesca’s and took a breath, “Jason Grace, he’s my half-brother, because you know, I’m a son of Jupiter, and I’m scared, scared Cesca, I don’t want people to think that I’m going to be a traitor, but I don’t want him to be hurt either.” He suddenly stood up and walked over to the exit of the small room they were in, just off the main hall where meetings were held, “Just promise me one thing Cesca, if you ever, but some reason, meet Jason, could you please make sure he’s okay? I may never have met my older brother, but still. He’s family.”

He’s Family.

These words stuck in her mind as she crept along the dark hallway, running her hand along ornate pillars and smooth stone walls, she gazed out of a window cut out of the stone. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath, the sea breeze calming her ever so slightly. She opened her eyes and looked to the sky above, it was a clear night, no clouds to obstruct the view of the moon. She smiled at the sight of the moon, her mother, Achelois was a minor moon goddess, the moon, although it was a symbol of Artemis, it still calmed her.

Achelois

Turning away from the window and shadows of the moon she continued down the hallway. When she reached the end she turned left and pushed back a drape and unveiled a dark entrance, with steps leading downwards. Stepping into the darkness Francesca’s eyes started to slowly adjust to the darkness, taking a few steps carefully, placing one foot in front of the next stepping down each step with shaky legs. Soon, she began to see a light at the end of the passageway. Quickening her pace she almost leaped down the steps towards it, once she got there she stopped still and peered through the small square cut out of the wooden door that she had her hands pressed against. Her eyes peeked through the hole and glanced around at the grey stone walls of where she had visited earlier with Piper. Seeing that no one was there she pushed open the door and winced at the creaking noise it made. Walking through the open door and glancing around to check that none of Clarisse’s siblings were about she shut the door and covered it back the fabric which hung over it. Pausing to remember which room or ‘cell’ that the Roman praetor had been thrown into she quietly walked over to one and looked through the metal bars which former a window of sorts.

Wincing at the sight inside she pulled on the door slowly, so not to alert any of Ares’ children that she was breaking into a cell. Shutting the door behind her Francesca kneeled down at his side. This is for Tom, she reminded herself, as she cast a look over his injuries. 

Gash on his arm, broken wrist, and that’s just part of it. The girl thought to herself as she opened up a bag she had with her, bringing out a medium sized vial of nectar she trickled it onto his right arm, muttered a small prayer to her mother and Apollo she began to fix his wrist and bind it with a bandage. Although her mother wasn’t the goddess of healing, her mother did have some aspect of medicinal qualities in her. 

After she had bound up his wrist she set to work on his leg. Its looks like a hellhound used it as a chew toy, Francesca thought as she poured nectar along the limb. Muttering a few words under her breath, she placed her hands on his leg and continued to mutter them. Her eyes, that once were closed flew open and shimmered a silver colour, looking back down on to the former ‘hellhounds chew toy’, she smiled slightly when she found that it was healed. Looking over his body, checking for more injuries, Francesca nodded, satisfied, there was a small cut on his left cheek but that wasn’t life threatening, it was barely a scratch. Standing up and brushing herself off and swinging around her bag onto her shoulder. But just before she could leave the cell a slight scuffling noise caught her attention. She turned to see the Roman coughing and attempting to push himself up onto his arms.

“Thanks,” Jason croaked, “You really didn’t have to do this for me.”

“I didn’t do it for you,” she stated in a cold and harsh voice, “you Romans took away almost everything I held dear, you killed my village, no, I didn’t do it for you. No. I did it for Tom.” With her final words she shut the cell door and escaped back through the dark passageway. When she got to the end she pushed back the drape and put her back against the wall and slid down it. She dropped her head into her hands and muttered in a small voice.

“Why in Hades did I do that?”

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