over a year ago:
"Yes, Jason's back!"
"Oh my gods, Jason's back!"
"Why are you guys talking about someone's back?" Percy called out as he walked closer to Bobby and a group of other demigods.
Bobby grinned. "Not back as in the body part, but as in... returned. Jason, praetor of the First Legion, is back!"
Percy still didn't really understand the whole legion and praetor thing, but he understood that if you were a praetor of a legion, you were pretty high up on the Camp Jupiter popularity list.
"Where'd he go?" Percy asked, curious to hear more about the Jason that everyone mentioned all the time. He couldn't imagine what it would be like to be a demigod camp's number one awesome guy.
"No one knows, but we'll find out soon enough," Bobby said. "He'll be arriving at the highway tunnel entrance of the camp."
The whole group stampeded away at his words in the direction that Percy assumed was the tunnel entrance. Bobby grabbed Percy's arm and pulled him in the opposite direction.
"Where are you going?" Percy protested. "I want to meet Jason!"
"I was lying," Bobby said. "Lupa went for the beach. I'm sure they are there now."
Percy nodded and jogged with him. They were just reaching the trees when they literally ran into Reyna.
"Ah!" Reyna cried out, falling onto her back. "Watch out."
Percy leaped to his feet and helped her up as she wiped her eyes. Percy could see that she was crying, and he could also hear it in her voice. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine, it was just a little fall," she said quickly.
Percy shook his head patiently. Behind him, he heard Bobby curse and struggle to stand. "That's not what I meant. Don't deny it; I can see the tears on your face. What happened?"
Bobby went to stand beside him, slightly limping. "What? Reyna! What's wrong?" He quickly added, "Percy, promise that you'll never repeat anything about this to anyone."
"I swear on the River Styx that no one will hear about this," Percy said simply.
The sky rumbled. Somehow, Percy wasn't surprised to hear it.
"Thanks," Reyna sniffed, cutting Bobby off before he could repeat the oath. "Bobby, I trust you. You don't need to promise on the River."
Bobby bowed slightly. "I am honored that you trust me so much." His voice was uncertain as if he was not used to the formality.
To Bobby's obvious surprise, Reyna sat down hard onto a rock, clearly disappointed. "Oh, so now
you act respectful. All those times you treated me with nothing but the respect of a friend, and now you're 'honored by my trust'!"
Bobby blinked. "So..."
She huffed impatiently, but tears still streamed from her brown eyes. Reyna said, "Treat me the way you always treated me. As a friend." With a sigh, she added quietly, "At least friends always stay loyal."
Bobby expression was confused and a bit horrified at the same time; he obviously had no idea what to with this new, sad, Reyna.
"What happened?" Percy asked again. He didn't understand what exactly she was talking about, but he knew enough to feel incredibly sorry for her.
She whispered, "Jason's back..."
"So I've heard," Percy grumbled, remembering how those two words had been shouted endlessly just minutes earlier.
"With him there were... new recruits, and there was this one girl, Piper, and..." She sobbed for another second, and pulled herself together a bit. "Jason likes her," she whispered. "And she likes Jason. Jason doesn't seem to remember me."
Percy felt cold. "That's odd."
Bobby frowned, seeming to share his thoughts. "Who else was with Jason?" he pressed.
Reyna struggled to remember, as if she was also suffering from amnesia. "There were others named... Leo, uh, Kya... Peter, Henry... Annabeth. And of course, you know Piper."
Percy was chilled to the bone, and there was a sharp, piercing pain between his eyes. He doubled over with a gasp.
"Percy! Are you remembering something again?" Bobby asked with concern.
"He does that when he remembers?" Reyna frowned, confused. "That's strange."
Recovering, Percy straightened. "Yeah, it's strange," he panted. Turning to Bobby, who looked at him expectantly, he said, "I think there was someone in my past named Annabeth."
"Describe this Annabeth," Bobby demanded to Reyna, his eyes blazing with something like excitement, as if he was on the verge of a major breakthrough. Then again, he was.
Percy was sure that this name, Annabeth, was a big part of his past. If he could just remember her...
"I didn't really notice, but I think she was a blonde," she muttered.
"Sound familiar?" Bobby asked Percy.
Percy nodded uncertainly. "Kind of." He didn't see how this was helping. It was probably a different Annabeth, anyways. There was no way that the Annabeth hidden in his memories was actually on the beach a kilometer away. Percy was sure that the girl he barely knew could be anywhere in the world. The chances of her being on that beach would be one in a million.
Reyna perked up, as if remembering something else. "Oh, and they were all wearing the same orange shirt as Percy wore."
Percy slowly looked down at his shirt, as did Bobby and Reyna. Looking carefully, he saw a horse with wings, and letters that were definitely not English. Strangely, he recognized them. It was Greek. And he knew what they said. "Camp Half-Blood."