|This story, An Act Of Defiance, is Rated T, which means it may include fighting, blood and swearing|
It is a Camp Half-Blood series fanfiction set five years after the events in the Heroes Of Olympus, and Ten years before the events of The Jackson Legacy occurs. And unlike the original story, the protagonists are canon characters: Leo Valdez and Piper McLean. And it also contains swearing (at least minor).
To learn more about the story, please refer to the index page (or not, since it's unreliable at the moment).
Note: The story isn't officially published (since my beta-reader has not yet heard of this). It is currently on development stage, so changes in the writing are inevitable.
Synopsis: Leo Valdez, twenty-one, is having a good time in flight school when old friend Piper McLean, twenty, comes to visit him with news: Jason Grace has gone missing. With no clue where to find him, Leo and Piper sets out to search for their lost friend. But they don't know that they're going to get more than they are supposed to bargain for...
An Act Of DefianceEdit
Alex Brown had finally caught up in the chase. The two fugitive half-bloods—Leo Valdez and Piper Mclean—in whom they kept pursuing since the gods had order them were finally on their grasp. The night was rainy, and they chased them on the wide empty road, the streetlights dimly illuminating the wet concrete. He had enough men to at least corner them (about eighty to a hundred, almost a small army). He had heard from the his people that Valdez and McLean were two of the most dangerous half-bloods of this decade, and—surprisingly—they were still alive and breathing despite having strong auras that monsters could easily track down.
“Alex, be careful,” Marie, his sweetheart, said to him a few days ago, “They’re veterans of the war a couple of years ago. Those two are part of the seven.”
“The seven?” Alex was flabbergasted. “But they helped the gods in the war. Why do they want them?”
Marie shook her head. “I don’t know. But the gods said they have something that they wanted. Something…dangerous. It could bring about the end of Western Civilization. That’s what I’ve heard from them, anyway.”
The small army of demigods who were following Alex started taking out their weapons—swords, bows, shields, guns—when the pair had turned into another corner of the road.
We have them, Alex thought. But what will happen when we did capture them? Will the gods reward me? Or will they just leave me alone, back to my life with Marie? The gods were unpredictable beings, of course. He didn’t know what they would do to him after all the things that he did for them. He was chained into a life-long service in Olympus, Alex was. Probably living a miserable life being a pet of the Olympians. But they gave him Marie, and she was the only source of happiness he had.
Alex thought back at the time when the Olympians summoned him on their thrones to announce his new quest.
“Break them into pieces if you have to. But do not kill them.”
“They do not know what they are getting at.”
“The information that they may have can end us.”
“I don’t understand,” Alex interrupted, looking up the faces of the gods. “What did they do?”
Silence. Nobody spoke.
“Do what you must, Alexander.”
A gunshot echoed through the rain.
A woman called a name out.
“We got them, sir!” A demigod shouted, running towards him through the clustered army. A shotgun was hanging behind his back.
Alex nodded. They didn’t put much of a fight after all. Maybe he just overestimated the two. Maybe they’ve grown weaker through the course of their adventure. Or maybe they weren’t that strong as Alex had originally imagined.
He made his way through the crowd and stood in front of the half-bloods.
It was a man and a woman around their early twenties, kneeling on the ground, their hands bounded behind them. The man had scars and bruises almost everywhere, like he hadn’t taken any ambrosia or nectar for days, maybe even weeks, which was something only a crazy man did. He had a large gunshot wound on his shoulder. The woman also had bruises, but it seemed much less than the man. And she was beautiful, that it was almost impossible to focus on her wounds. Both of their clothes were stained and wet from the rain.
The man—Valdez—was still struggling from the binds, while McLean was trying to calm him down by talking to him so soothingly that Alex and some of the demigods nearby suddenly felt calm. But the spell didn’t work on her companion.
Alex approached the man and grabbed his collar. “You have something the gods want. You know something the gods should know. Tell us so we’ll finish the job quick.”
In truth, Alex didn’t know what the gods wanted. They only told him to extract the information from one of them and then bring them to Olympus. Just in case they lie…they said to him. Alex, too, was curious as to what they both have to say, the valuable information they kept from the world. This was the only chance he could hear the secret out, the first one before the gods did…
Instead of saying anything, Valdez spat on Alex’s face and grinned crookedly. One of the demigods kicked the fugitive behind the back. Alex brought the man up and threw him back down the ground in disgust.
The man growled and his wild eyes wandered around the surrounding men, who recoiled when they met eye contact with him. He was even scarier when he was lying on the ground. His movements reminded Alex of a dragon’s; crouching on all fours before roaring its flames.
“Fine,” Alex wiped the spit from his cheek, trying to stare intently at the man’s eyes. “I just want the job done quickly. But if you insist...”
He nodded to the one of his troops. The demigod made a grab for the woman and yanked her braided hair. She yelped in pain. He took a dagger and placed it near her throat. They weren’t really planning in hurting her, much less killing her. It was forbidden for demigods to kill each other now. It was a law recently established in Olympus. Half-blood population was gradually decreasing because of the constant fights between them. That wasn’t counting the fact that many other demigods were also killed by being attacked by monsters and crazy mortal mothers and fathers.
Valdez’s struggling stopped when he saw that his friend was being held. His expression turned from rage to panic.
It was Alex’s turn to smile. He found his weakness.
“Don’t you dare touch her!” The man screamed. “You son of a—”
He was interrupted by another kick on the chest. He fell down again.
“We’re simply here for a quiet negotiation,” Alex said. “The information, in exchange for your freedom. We will stop the pursuit and let you two go, ignore you like blind people.”
The man stayed on the ground, unmoving, letting the droplets of rain trickled down his scarred face.
“Leo,” McLean started, braid still being held by the demigod, dagger still near her neck. “No…”
“I know,” Valdez said. His voice was suddenly calm, his face relaxed. It was giving Alex a wave of caution. “I’m thinking.”
Thunder rumbled. Rain continued to pelt down. The woman’s breathing became steady.
“Well?” Alex pressed on.
Leo closed his eyes. And then grinned.
Suddenly, McLean broke from her binds and brandished a dagger from behind her back. She started maiming the demigods surrounding her, her movements swift and unorthodox. Slide, kick, jab and then stab… Then Alex noticed that there was no pattern in the way she fought, no established fighting styles.
She took down more than a dozen demigods in a minute. She was almost unstoppable. Were they feigning weakness a while ago to bring Alex’s guard down?
A whip of flame came towards Alex, which he noticed from the corner of his eye and barely avoided. All of his group’s attention was to the woman that they forgot about the other one.
When he turned attention back to Valdez, he saw that the man had gone really wild. Even though his hands were still tied up, he kept issuing flames from each kick, scraping his shoes at the concrete like matches. He attacked Alex’s men one by one, burning them, killing them…
A fire user, Alex thought, watching Valdez take down twice the amount than McLean. So the gods still continue giving away defected children.
A maniacal laugh echoed throughout the street. There were men on fire, and men bleeding on the ground. Alex’s time had abruptly slowed down. A moment ago, he had those two half-bloods, shriveled and weak. But now those half-bloods were taking down more than a half of his army in minutes.
“Leo, snap out of it!” Piper shouted through the mayhem. “Damn it, you’re going to burn down the whole city!”
Alex spotted the woman rushing towards her companion. She broke his binds and then grabbed his hand.
“Let go!” Valdez shouted, struggling from her grasp. “They’re trying to kill us, Piper! The gods are crazy! We didn’t do anything wrong but they want me. They want you!”
“Leo, stop. You’re sick. We have to go, now. Damn it, look at me!” Tears were starting to fall from her eyes. Then she gave him a hard slap to the cheeks. It stopped him from struggling. He looked at her, stunned. They didn’t seem to mind what was happening around them, because they just kept staring at each other. They were in their own world, silently communicating with one and the other.
“You’re not feeling well, Leo. We have to go,” she said in a quiet voice, looking at him for a long time before Valdez slowly nodded.
Alex had snapped back to reality when he noticed them dashing away from him. When he looked back to his group, the ones who were still fine were less than a dozen. Did they wipe out that many…?
Alex had no choice but to chase them down, ignoring the searing pain in his arm that he received from the wild one. They were in his grasp now. He just wanted to end this stupid cat and mouse chase and take a rest. Maybe the gods didn’t even know the definition of rest. Immortal beings, they are, alright.
They ran and ran until they were in a long bridge with a gulf below it. The two demigods looked back and saw Alex and his remaining troops. They said something to each other, and linked arms. Then they leaped towards the water. Alex could’ve sworn he saw Valdez look back to him and stick out his tongue before he jumped.
The hell are they think they’re doing! Alex quickly rushed towards the edge of the bridge and looked down. He couldn’t see anything through the darkness and rain.
Damn it, I lost them. He swore to himself. He looked back to the direction they came from, and saw the sea of flames growing bigger and wider. Alex cursed again. More problems. Gods, it’s going to take a long while before I go home.