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 A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place

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terra
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PostSubject: A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place   Mon Feb 20, 2017 8:12 am

The world looked distorted.

Standing there, among the grizzled trees of the forest as the sun hung high in the afternoon sky, shedding a comforting warmth through the trees that sank welcomingly into Alex's bones, the most persistent thought he could manage was that 'this was weird.' Not the forest, necessarily; the vast expanse of verdant growth felt familiar to him, the constant sounds of distant creatures scurrying across the leave strewn floor or of some bird chattering giddily in the boughs as it soaked in the sunlight, all of it was very familiar to him. Yet, somehow, nothing was the same anymore. Zanna crouched next to his leg, patient and steady like a rock ready to weather any storm that may yet come their way. He may not have to wait for long, if the feelings roiling in Alex's stomach and the pressure in his chest meant anything.

Only three weeks had past since his last encounter with the Wheezy brothers in Colorado. Three weeks, and now everything about his life, everything that he had once known, seemed minuscule and incomplete, whole new areas of boundless change peeling open before his eyes. It had taken a week to get camp where, apparently, others like him were currently residing. Others being demi-gods, children of mortal and godly descent, who all seemed to take his presence there far easier than he had. Perhaps they were used to it, perhaps it was easier for them to comprehend, but for him it was a tidal wave of unfamiliar faces and sounds and smells, all crammed uncomfortably into a large pill he'd had to swallow dry.

Upon entering the borders to the camp, Alex had felt the change in the air like a blanket of muffling sound draped over his skin. Shortly afterward, once reaching the main compound, a golden sun-burst had appeared over his head like his own personal spot-light, shining a beacon on his new existence as something he had only the faintest idea of. A son of the god Apollo, a demi-god of Camp Half-Blood.

Too many new faces all at once, he'd decided, too much noise to handle, too much change. For five years Alex had been on the run, alone except for the occasional few interactions he'd received as he fled from the monsters perpetually after his skin, or for Zanna. The wolf had remained constant at his side and he could not imagine being separated from him now. As it was, the large timber preferred to roam the woods rather than enter the camp proper, and Alex was all to quick to join him when he could.

Gleaming at his side, bringing a sense of protection that Alex had not felt since he'd been a boy, was a large knife crafted of what was apparently known as Celestial Bronze. It was the only way to injure the monsters that roamed the forest, as his own bow had continually proven ineffectual from the many encounters of strange creatures over the years, and the young demi-god had already tested its blade. He was astounded at the effect it had, causing the monsters to burst into the golden dust that signaled their obliteration, a feat he had come to think could only be achieved by forcing them to kill each other or trap themselves. Five years of constant running, unable to even defend himself, and now everything just sort of... fell into place.

Except for him.

"Do you think its this difficult for everyone to adjust?" Alex took a seat on the ground, propping himself against the thick base of a tree. Rough bark pressed at his back through his thin shirt, but he paid it no mind; endless nights sleeping on the ground int eh forest had provided him with an unyielding tolerance for roughing it. "Why are there so many of them here?"

Many gods. Long lives. They get bored.

"Always the best excuse for another kid, so I've heard."

Zanna shifted his position to face Alex, still sitting on his haunches. He cocked his head to the side slightly, a mannerism that Alex had found meant he was considering something important or he was curious. Should we leave?

The question had floated through his mind more than few times over the past few weeks as he tried to absorb the reality of what was happening around him, but even though the process of adapting was difficult, he didn't think he could just go back to being ignorant. Not after learning everything he'd learned. Before, Alex had constantly been on the lookout for danger because it was always present, always waiting to rip him into little demi-god pieces. Knowing that there was a reason for it? Knowing that there were others who faced the same trials and he was not alone in the world? It was too tantalizing to forsake so easily.

"No. Its not like it would change much. We have to overcome, right? Besides, they have tacos here. Who could say no to that?"

I can.

"Yeah but you eat dead stuff raw so I think I'll reserve my judgement."

Zanna sat quietly for a few moments, then lifted his snout and sniffed twice at the air. He rose to all four feet and sniffed again. Someone approaches.
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PostSubject: Re: A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place   Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:19 am

It was extremely hot.

Cassia hated heat. She hated the warm feeling inside her. Perhaps it was because of her father. He was the personification of death. Death isn’t exactly a warm fuzzy thing. But death is also important to the cycle of the world. It creates room for the new. Cassia understood that the world relied on death like a baby relied on its parents. She promised herself she would never be afraid of death.

It was a promise that she broke.

The wind touched against her face. There was finally some cool air around her. It made her think back to her science lessons, when she was young. They were hard to remember. Those lessons seemed like a lifetime ago. They were her past. Besides, what was the point of science if you knew it was all under the authority of gods? If you knew that a group of people up on Mount Olympus could change that? The sun was high in the sky, to high for her to reach. When she was a child, she would try to grab it from the sky. Cassia would stand on her toes or jump as high as she could.

It was always to high.

It was lonely. Cassia’s life was lonely. She didn't mind. Not having friends was so normal. Especially if your father is death. Cassia never had friends. She drove people away. That was a fact she knew so well, as clear as day. Her whole family hated her. Her broken family. Her stepfather. Her stepsister. Her mother. Her brother. Well, half brother. They had different fathers. He was normal. He wasn’t a freak. He was the only person she missed. Cassia was surprised when she realized she missed Kai. He was spoiled, like Arabella. Yet, she couldn’t help but wish he was there. Kai was the only person who didn’t ridicule her. That was only because he was too young. However, it had been four years since she saw him. He was eight now.

Everything changes.

Cassia stood at the camp borders, looking out at the world beyond. She had no desire to go out there. It was a place where she would most certainly die. Yet she wondered about her family out there. After all, it had been four years without contact. Had Arabella flunked out of school yet? Had Kai grown into a handsome little boy? She longed for answers, and it didn’t seem like she would get them. Her family would be alright if a monster ate her. They didn’t care about her. She was shamed, an example of what not to be. They didn't miss her.

She turned and continued to walk around camp, her small hands clutching a book. There were two boys sitting in the forest together. Cassia sighed. That was one of her favorite reading spots. She sighed, trying to figure out what to do. In the end, she decided to sit down a few feet away. Cassia pulled out her book and read. She tunes out the world. Tuned out their conversation. They only people who still existed were her and Katniss Everdeen. She turned the pages very quickly, as she was a fast reader. This was a book she had read a thousand times. It was fun to read it again.
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PostSubject: Re: A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place   Mon Feb 20, 2017 4:23 pm

Zanna darted away into the shadows, silent as a falling leaf, to circle around approach from the rear. Alex rose to a crouch, ready to spring into action if needed. He took a deep, calming breath, mentally picturing a sun inside his chest, glowing brighter and brighter until it suffused the air with warmth. The light around him shifted, an ability he had discovered a few years ago and had only recently realized it was a power due to his parentage. It did not make him invisible, but it did make him hard to notice, as if the eye just did not want to see what was in front of it. It was a proven tactic; Alex camouflages himself, waits for the enemy to approach, and Zanna sneaks up from behind to attack on Alex's direction.

A few moments later, however, it turned out that the approaching "enemy" was merely a spirit of the forest, a dryad, coming closer. She was beautiful, with green skin and tangled hair like creeper vines, and moved easily through the trees, sometimes even through them. As she approached, Alex released the hold of the light phase and shifted back to normal visage, eliciting a startled jump from the spirit.

"Oh my," she squeaked, "I thought there was someone here. Like, I didn't even see you though. Which is a shame," she finished, offering a wink. "Is that wolf, like, with you?"

"Yeah, he's my friend," Alex replied, "sorry to scare you." Its a dryad. No worry.

Perhaps.

"Did you need something?" Alex relaxed his stance and sheathed his knife. He'd felt more comfortable around the dryads and naiads since he'd arrived at camp, their natural presence feeling more at home then the other campers, more aloof to his passing, it seemed. "Or am I needed back at camp?"

"Your wolf, like, totally peed on my tree," she huffed angrily, placing her hands on her hips. "So rude."

"I think that means he likes you," he replied with a grin. The dryad did not seem to be entertained, however, and Alex was wishing he could actually become invisible now. "Um, yeah, I'll uh, talk to him about that. We'll get out of your way."

Run, Zanna, she's not happy.

Because of her tree?

You knew it was hers?

Yes.

Zanna met up with Alex in no time, a far faster runner than the demi-god was, and together they cleared a safe distance from the angry spirit before settling into a comfortable walk, moving closer toward the edge of the forest.

"Sometimes I think you do these things intentionally to get me into trouble," Alex chided, placing his hand on Zanna's head affectionately.

Me? Never.

"Uh huh." He shook his head with a grin and continued on. "Big giant forest, full of stuff to pee on, and you have to go pick the one with a spirit that is likely to make flowers start sprouting out of my rear. Thanks." Zanna didn't even glance up at him as he trotted along. Alex rolled his eyes. "Eventually we're gonna run out of places to go without spirits assaulting us. Hey, wonder what she's up to."

Ahead, sitting alone on the forest floor, dark hair falling around her face as she read through some book, was a young girl. He thought he'd seen her around camp before, so that made her another demi-god. She appeared alone; incidentally or intentional?

Do you think she's okay?

Does it matter?

Don't be crass, Zanna, lets say hello anyway.

Alex approached the girl, trying to appear friendly. "Hey there. Don't suppose you peed on a tree too, eh?"
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PostSubject: Re: A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place   Sat Feb 25, 2017 12:57 pm

Cassia could hardly tell the boys were talking about her. She was to engrossed in the book, her eyes never lifting up from the smooth pages. One of them approached her. When the muscular blonde spoke, her face was blank. What could he be talking about. He didn't really ask her if she peed on the tree too, did he? "Pardon?" she asked with a soft voice.
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PostSubject: Re: A Place For Everything and Everything Out of Place   Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:08 pm

"Um..." Alex answered the girl, wincing at his own question. It was probably not the sort of thing normal people asked each other. Zanna lay on the ground, head on his paws and eyes closed. The wolf had a habit of not caring about others being around.

"Sorry, didn't mean to interrupt your book or anything, we were just being chased. Angry spirit, there was pee involved, it was a whole big... pee, thing. You know how it goes." He shrugged sheepishly, wondering what it was he was actually supposed to say. Zanna was of no help, per usual; perhaps he should have chanced it with the dryad? "Uh, never mind. Hi, I'm Alex."
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