These past few days had been so slow and the blond son of Zeus does not like it at all. Mesi Lysi seemed like a ghost town; not seeing those students that usually made noise around the enormous building, those party animals that were making it alive somehow. Speaking of Party; Zeno and his new found friend, Lee had thought of finding a party around Seattle. There were nothing else to do at the moment and training was a making Zeno sick—he’s been training that was quite boring of him, he needed to get out and have fun. He’d told Lee that he’s just going to grab his car keys, and then they’re ready to go. Looking around, he tried to search for the key. Where did he even put it? As he tried to remember where he’d put it last time, he shifted to his heels then a silver object that was shining hit his blue eyes, and that made him blinked.
Once Zeno already had the key on his hand, he grabbed his black leather jacket then slung it on his shoulder before he’d walk his way to the elevator. It felt like it was a click of a second then he was already on the ground floor walking to the parking lot. Whenever the blond was wandering inside his thoughts, everything felt so fast—he should just think and be lost because that makes everything less slow, rather fast. Hearing his car beep he followed the sound and finally found the black SUV. Assuming that Lee was not near, he’d pulled his phone out of his pocket and decided to send him a text message saying “Dude I’m here, just go to your left way left when you’re at the parking lot” he typed out and sent it to the recipient: Lee.
The blond guy was confused. He cannot figure the things that were happening right now between him and the daughter of Aphrodite, named Kalahari. Everything inside his brain was all jumbled up because of what she did there. Why would someone kiss him and tell him that she was attracted to him, while she’s lesbian. Zeno, the confuse one held his hand up to the back of his head and scratch it. Is she playing with me? He questioned inside his head. Hearing her vague explanations left him to wonder again. Putting his hands on her shoulders, he gave her an awkward smiled and his lips started to open letting him speak. “Why don’t you know?” he asked.
He let a second or so passed by before he started to speak again. “I know somehow there’s a reason.” he patted her left cheek softly “You know? You are confusing the hell out of me”. The sound of honesty had lingered around his voice once the words had found its escape away from his mouth. Zeno hated being confused, because he ended up figuring things out and it will never end until the time will came that everything’s finally clear to him. Biting his lip while he ran a hand through his hair, he patiently waited for an answer.
One move that will make you regret; one move that you wanted to take back but you can’t. The stupidity in him always came first; he never thinks before he acts. He was careless—now he bet his relationship with his friend will be ruined. He bet he will never be forgiven with the thing that he have done. Why did he even had the guts to do that? He groaned. He just wanted to punch his own self. What is happening to him? He’s changing—he’s one heck of a wreck. Time to time he’s getting worse. He never let anything affect him before, but why now? why is he very affected with the beckoning of that girl. The feeling he is having was indescribable when he remember her. Why did his heart abide there in her…why? All the questions’ just making him confuse. He should just stop and threw away those feelings he is still having. Because of being a reckless imbecile everything that surrounded him is starting to be destroyed. Like shit. He just wanted to fixed everything he have broken, now. He just wished that he come to realized that earlier, before everything gone worse. Now, his friend Skyler is very angry with him and his sister Carla is very disappointed with him.
Looking around the whole living room an idea popped out of his head. He have hoped this idea won’t be a cause to another failure. Kicking his feet on the ground, pushing his way up to stand. He rushed to the kitchen and started to check if they had all the ingredients that he needed for the pizza cupcakes that he is going to make. Before he gathered all the ingredients he preheated the oven first. Breathing in deeply his hands started to move mixing all the ingredients. Everything seemed so fast when you are occupied; not with thoughts but with actions. The boy was already putting the pan inside the oven.
When he started the timer, he moved going to the sink. He turned on the faucet and washed his hands. He watched as the water hit his palms—water always felt good. Whatever temperature it is it calmed the hell in you. Turning it off, he walked around trying to find the clean clothe that he have grabbed; a sigh of relief escaped his mouth when he found it. Wiping up his hands there he looked around and saw a sticky note and a pen lying on the corner. He picked it up and he found himself scribbling down. It was a timing; when he finished writing down some words the pizza cupcakes were too. He waited for it to cool down before getting it out of the oven.
Red, orange, yellow, blue…those different colored flames danced with each other giving out a beautiful fire to watch. It was flickering in the dark, it gave you warmth, and it made you feel the ease being around nature. You can just stare at it the whole night and never get tired at all; it will never make you think of haunting memories. It won’t addend the bruises you already have; no that statement was false. It will destroy everything around you when you fuel it up. It will burn you and gave you more unbearable pain than those small bruises you have. Bruises are just minor. And the guy who had those wished he had more than that: burned skin for example. Everything seemed destroyed already; the fire around him was fueled up by someone when she left. Sadly, he was left not destroyed, but suffering from the sorrow the destructive element left him. What the fire left was nothing but the dull, gray; ash. Whenever the guy looked at the ash, he can feel nothing but betrayal. He trusted that special person to keep the fuel safe, but she broke the trust and feed the fuel to the fire.
When the flickering fire faded away along with the winds, everything turned black and dark. He cannot see anything, but nothingness and nothingness itself. The blonde guy should have felt empty, but he was filled by emptiness that he could not feel anything at all, anymore. He was simply numbed, at the moment. The numbness did not last when everything started to shake. Once his blue eyes fluttered open the first thing that it met was the hot rays of the sun, it made him close it again. His right hand rose and covered his vision from the sun light. And that was when he realized everything was still shaking. Looking around the place he was in, he found his tank top and shoes; he grabbed it then immediately maneuvered his way out of the thing that sheltered him from the cold breeze at night when he was sleeping peacefully getting lost with his dream that he could not consider as a nightmare or a sweet one. He didn’t really pay any attention at where he was going; everything was too shaky to even pay attention to where you are going. Then snap! The blonde guy heard, he looked up and saw a falling branch ready to hit his head.
The blonde guy found himself lying on the ground, he can feel the coolness of the ground, he can feel ants crawling under his skin, and he can feel the dirt on his palms. And that made him remember that there was an earthquake before he fall unconscious. A groan had escaped his lips when he tried to sit up, every muscle of his body ached. He took a hold of his forehead and felt a watery substance; fucking gods’ sake he thought. His forehead was bleeding. Cringing, he looked around again trying to find the shoes and tank top he was holding earlier. He bit his lower lip when he found his tank top covered with dirt. He patted off the dirt and wore it to keep himself warm. It was freezing cold though, he was stupid for not grabbing a jacket with him. When he spotted his shoes he wore it then slowly stood up from the ground, being careful not to fall. As he started to walk, he started to think if everyone else was alright. He hoped yes. Having familiar feature in sight “Hey, you alright?” he asked.
It was the middle of the night and the blonde son of Zeus found himself following the brunette daughter of Hephaestus, named Theo to the elevator. It’s been long since he had talked to her and she caught him in the wrong time; he was lost and confused. He was not feeling okay; he hadn’t eaten anything at all as concluded. He bit his lip when the two doors have already closed, then he saw his reflection. He looked terrible: red blood-shot eyes, messy hair and growing beard.
Awful things were just piled up for him, and he can’t handle it. Noticing how it was silent he decided to break it “So, I heard your access card doesn’t work. Is it good now?” he asked, looking up at the changing red numbers of the elevator as they passed through different floors, he waited to hear her answer.
For the first time in his entire life, he’d frozen in place. Everything was crashing around him. Or rather, not everything. Words. Shinji, Ian, Skyler, Vivienne, Jenna, Julian, Hugh. All of them, all of their answers, all of their counters, all of them pounding at his brain. Maybe you are a child. No, he knew that. He could handle it. Or not. Maybe he can’t. Nothing can shock him. He isn’t phased by these epiphanies, if they could be called epiphanies at all. No time to explain it. He was too busy fighting off his thoughts, his dreams, some not belonging to him. Their hopes, their dreams, their aspirations, they all belonged to Mars now and Mars was left with the burden of being himself. Why does it hurt now? Has it always hurt? Maybe he’d finally been worn down. Eroded.
What he’d said today was a mistake. That wasn’t supposed to happen. To let them see his purposes was indefinitely selfish of him, then spent half the conversation averting away from himself, letting them win so he could disappear. He could argue. He could explain. He could delve deeper into himself. Could. Why would he say that to strangers? He didn’t know them, he didn’t want to now. Now they knew too much about him. So redirect again. Make him be a self-absorbed boy that thinks himself above the population of students and faculty. Let them think he was highly opinionated, let them think he was close-minded, trying to be something he’s not. Let him add another layer to his purpose, already laid thick. How many layers did he have now? He counts, as if it were possible - it’s not. The count is in vain. How do you measure that? Let them peel away, they’ll think they know me. They’ll think I’m just a kid that thinks he knows it all, that gives wisdom that will help no one, that will argue with you because he’s smarter than you. Let his own longing to be understood be bypassed. Let it be ignored. By doing so, does he not let them reassure themselves? Does he not give them perspective? Just not in the way they think they’re getting it, not at all. Even if they think they see past the layer, it’s really another one he’s set down. It’s been far too long. A dozen layers down per year, where does it end?
His exasperation with himself came with an outburst, left with the fog of cowardice nipping at his heels. He ran. If Mars stayed for any longer, he was sure to pass out in the middle of the hallway. Oh the misunderstood… I understand you. If you knew I thought this, you would say I really don’t, at all, but you underestimate me, for I can see your dreams. Yet I don’t need that ability, I will always understand. I’m here to give you exactly what you need. You’ll never realize it. The door of an empty classroom slams by his own hand. With urgency he picks up a stick of charcoal and his sketchbook, just to draw, what, anything. He looks down. First he thinks it’s his mother. It was, at first, but then her eyes are smudged out and in the smudge are the faces of the people whose words torment him. They don’t know. I never named it to be a fault, let alone anyone else’s. Isn’t this what he wanted? For a collection of answers? Did he not come to the school and ask them, an open ended conversation in which anyone could join? Did he not make himself aware of consequences that may occur? Most of the words were meant to be comforting. Yet they’re not making that connection to him. They seem like attacks. They are attacks, he can see it in their eyes. Do they mean them to be attacks? Why can’t he understand now, of all the times the most crucial of all, in the midst of deep self doubt, he can’t comprehend a thing?
Or maybe, he doesn’t understand anything. Maybe he’s set the layers too soon and now they’ve become him. Maybe he’s just as shallow as everyone thinks. Maybe he’s not helping them at all. Maybe his meaning isn’t getting through, and maybe they’ve only seen the outside layer of his words’ meaning, just as they only seen the outside layers of himself. (If those layers are still intact.) I’ve done nothing to help anyone. I’ve become exactly what I set out to destroy. I thought I could handle it. I thought I could take on the burdens. He smudges the faces, charcoal covering his fingers and as he holds his face in his hands, they cover that too. Eyes dart to a mirror, bloodshot blue against pale skin and black dust trails. Tears fall. I’ve finally gone insane. Was it knowledge or was it the craving to know? Was it a thirst for information or a desire to be better? Am I really what I made myself to seem like? He sinks to the ground, throwing his sketchbook from himself haphazardly, his head bowed between his knees. I failed you mother. Half lidded eyes blur with unshed tears. The thought wasn’t selfish enough for his new self. I’ve failed myself.
The hallways are empty, assurance everyone is training, or in their own rooms. Sighing, the blond son of Zeus, ran a hand through his hair. He was exhausted, and the desire to talk to Anabel was there, but he could not find her, she is busy, he guessed. He missed her, even those little arguments had been missed, but everything was fuzzy, tied-up and busy. Not that much interaction has been made, but he still hoped that a connection was still hanging. When he felt his phone vibrated, he pulled it out of his pocket and unlocked to see who had messaged him; he rolled his eyes…it was a prank call; unknown number, he was very exhausted to care, he doesn’t need to track it, unless it will call again.
As he looked around, still hoping for demigod heads around bobbing, talking to one another; he massaged the back of his neck, to relax himself up. No sign, as he stood up there, back leaned against the wall, muscles very tired to move, or just too lazy, his mind ran and drifted to somewhere he doesn’t like to be at. Family back home, he wondered if everything was cleared up, fixed; mended. The last messaged he had received from his aunt was saying Zia’s okay now not a word assured if his parents are really going to have a divorce or now in the state that they are reconciled.
Hearing a loud bang—in instance, the blond boy turned his head toward the sound. It was a door closed shut with force to make such noise. He stood up there, staring blankly on the ground; he was very dull at the moment, to occur curiousness. It took him too long to straighten up and head to the direction of the sound to check what that was or who was that, that made the noise. Ending up in an almost empty room, he looked through the window and had found a boy, face smudged up with tears and charcoal.
He observed him, he felt sad, and it felt like he needed someone to talk to. The caring nature of Zeno ran through him first, his feet dragged him inside there. He closed the door softly, and maneuvered going near the boy, he crouched down the ground and offered him a handkerchief to help him to wipe up his face wet from the ears and dirty from charcoal. His blue eyes stayed at the pale boy, waiting for a response.
The moment Skyler left the car, Carla followed close behind, accidentally slamming the door. But there was no time to apologize, Pickles was waiting. She ran towards the shop with full speed, grabbing Skyler’s hand in the mean time. Hands stretched excitedly, pushing the door open. A breath of coolness nibbled at her exposed skin, all kind of noises welcoming them inside. Green eyes roamed eagerly, absorbing every sight. Lips stretched into a wide grin. “Sky, look at all the puppies! And look, look at that kitty! It’s so cute!” The demi-goddess cooed, tracing a finger over the fluffy animal. The urge to buy the kitten was slowly building up in the pit of her stomach. She sighed, shaking her head. Parrot — that’s what she was looking for. Trying to avoid more adorable distractions, she continued her walk into the depths of the area.
“Snakes! Sky, Sky! Look a ssssssssnake” She hissed, elevating her eyebrows, before bursting into fits of laughter. Tapping onto the aquarium, she watched how it coiled and twisted, black eyes staring back at her green ones. A small gasp of amusement escaped her mouth; she turned around to look at the other creatures. “Pickles, Pickles, where are you hiding? My lovely Pickles, show me your beautiful face.” Carla mumbled, turning from side to side to find where the parrots were. She was beaming with happiness, and the fact that she could share it with her best friend and brother made her all the more happy. She was grateful to have such awesome friends and relatives — it made her feel special, unique, distinguished. A warm feeling spread through her body, smiles never leaving her dainty features.
The smell of furs and feathers were evident in the air. For some people, entering a pet shop may caused them to sneeze and wheeze but for Skyler with years of experience living with Jiggles the fat ginger cat, she has some sort of immunity with it. Her eyes wandered from one animal to another until she dropped her gaze on a ginger cat. Its whiskers are longer but not as fat as Jiggles, and the it’s fur is brighter. “Oh look,” she exclaimed, pointing at the cute ball of fur, “it looks like Jiggles.” She turned to her friend and giggled. Her expression of pure joy transformed into a terror when Carla tap the snake’s aquarium. Skyler initially liked snakes. As a matter of fact, she even thought of getting one after Dakota gave her a shark, but she did a brief research about it an what she have found out wasn’t really good.
“I wouldn’t really recommend having that as a pet. I read this article about this girl who took her python to a vet because it stopped eating anything. Turned out it was fasting in preparation to eat the girl.” She shuddered when she finished explaining. She had this weird rage of thought where she actually imagined Carla being that girl. She quickly shook her thoughts away before fear would even successfully defeat her. “Come on let’s go.” She said while pulling her friend farther from the creature behind the hazy glass. She looked around the shop and saw Zeno’s attention caught by a certain dog. “Zeno,” she called out with her head tilted and her face formed a smirk, “looking for a furry replacement for Zenabel, aren’t we?”she joked.
Zeno’s attention was caught by Skyler, he turned his head and look at her and furrowed his eyebrows. “No, haha Zee’s precious to have a replacement, Sky” he said and looked around the Pet Shop. He raised an eyebrow to his blonde sister, named Carla, when he saw her tapping the aquarium. Zeno loved these kind of animals, coldblooded ones. He used to have a pet lizard, but it got killed by his classmate. He once brought it to school, he was having fun scaring almost all the girls of the school, they said it was icky, but he can’t seem to get to their point of view about lizards, all he knew is that they are amazing. He was very pissed when his pet got killed. Oh well, it was his fault anyways if he didn’t scared them off it won’t get killed. Snakes are different from lizards; Zeno loved it more when snakes are in the wilds than kept in home. Snakes are dangerous. Period. There’s nothing else to say.
He looked around the pet shot again, trying to find where the birds are put. When he found it he walked towards it and tried to find a nice parrot. They have different colors, clashing that made Zeno’s eyes hurt. Sighing, he back off and looked at the two girls “What are you two waiting for, find Pickles, the parrot or else I won’t pay for it” he said with a fake serious tone and with a crossed arms.
Sleep. That was the only thing the girl cherished most. It soothed her, enveloped her with its peaceful touch, caressing her with tenderness, awakening her subconsciousness. A black background appeared and soon image following image began floating. Were they dreams or memories, maybe subtle desires? She couldn’t tell. Everything was wrapped in a mist, blur spots flashing here and there. But there was something wrong, something intruding — a voice. It was … annoying. Everything suddenly dispersed into nothingness, light illuminating the darkness. Green eyes opened drowsily, hair hanging in loose bangs, messy and untidy. Carla rubbed her eyes, trying to focus her vision on the figure on her door. “Z-Zeno?” The moment she realized who it was, her hand instantly grabbed a pillow aiming it at him. “What the hell are you doing here?!” And then it hit her. She had a meeting with Skyler to buy her new pet. Panic seized every fiber of her body.
Rushing out of bed and towards the bathroom, she finished everything quickly. She peered from the door, staring at Zeno, a nervous smile gracing her somewhat tired features. “Sorry about that.” She mumbled, picking up a random sock and putting it on. Right now, the color of her socks was the last thing she wanted to worry about. God knows how long Sky was waiting. A low groan escaped her throat, teeth clenching disapprovingly. She clutched her bag roughly, swinging it across her shoulder. “Come on, come on, we’re late! It’s your fault! Why didn’t you wake me up earlier?” She snapped at him angrily, before laughing. Well, blaming him was always her way of elegantly getting out of an uncomfortable situation. “Pickles! Here I come!” She chuckled, face beaming with excitement.
Skyler sighed exasperatedly as she tossed the copy of the OK! Magazine she was reading back to table. It was the worst magazine ever. It wasn’t OK at all. It’s just about of writing about people’s lives she barely knew. She just spent a twenty solid minutes of reading it, trying to make some sense out of it. Well she couldn’t really turned back those wasted time anymore, could she? She looked at the time and now they are ten minutes late. She didn’t min waiting though. It was Sunday after all. She just couldn’t stand the fact that there’s so many reading materials in front of her and none of them are worth reading.
She stood up and beamed upon seeing the blonde siblings stepped out of the elevator. “Yes! Finally you’re here. You just save me from reading this horrible magazines!” She exclaimed, totally forgetting the fact that they are 20 minutes or so late. Skyler engulfed Carla into a hug and then gave Zeno a light punch on the shoulder. “Come on, let’s go!” She hooked her arms with Carla’s and lead them into the parking lot. Skyler spotted her light pink Volkswagen beetle when they reached. She swallowed hard when she saw the thin layer of dust covering her car. She haven’t use it in a while. Skyler made a mental note of making sure that she would squeeze in some time to clean it. ” Well, Zeno, where’s your care here?”
Getting out of the elevator the both blonde spawns of Zeus walk going to the direction of the spawn of Aphrodite. A smile was set upon the blonde boy face when he received a light punch on his shoulders, he shoved his hands into his pockets and watch the two girls linked their arms. He shook his head and mumbled “girls” he followed the brunette and the blonde girl going to the parking lot.
When Zeno saw Skyler’s dusty Volkswagen his face crinkled up. “Whoa, Sky you should use your car anytime soon. Engine might not work anymore” he said and started to look for his black SUV. When he spotted it he led the two girls to its location and opened the doors for them. “Just enter or something” he said and get inside through the driver’s door. He waited for the two girls to settle in and shoved his keys into the ignition then started it.
After she had settled her shark on her room, Skyler just mentally high-five herself as she finally found herself a time to do what she had promised to her best friend, Carla. It will be her very first pet. It would be so special for her and Skyler decided that she would be there at her side while she pick a parrot that will served not just only her pet but her other best friend as well. Skyler jump off her bed the minute her alarm clock went off. Usually, it would take almost half an hour before Jiggles finally got tired of the sound of her alarm clock and licked her face to wake her senses up. After she took a shower, she quickly slid herself in her usual shirt-jeans-sneakers outfit. When she felt that everything looked alright already, she exited the 20th floor and rode the elevator down to the lobby.
Skyler decided to meet the blonde Zeus kids at the lobby before going to the nearest pet shop in the area. She arrived at the meeting place ten minutes earlier and for some reason, she wasn’t surprised to see the lobby to be Zeus kids-free. She sighed and sat at the nearest seat she found within her view and then grab a copy of OK! magazine to read while she patiently wait for Carla and Zeno.
Zeno woke up with a horrid expression on his face, he was tired and his muscles are aching and yet he needed to stand up from his bed and get ready. Today he’s going to buy that parrot that Carla and Skyler wanted with them of course. He found it unreasonable for them to push him to pay for the parrot. Both girls have enough money and all, but still Zeno tolerated because he can’t stand the annoyance of Carla. A laugh was made when he remembered the look Carla usually gave him if he said ‘no’.
When he finished brushing his teeth he wiped up his face and changed to a new batch of clothes. Before getting out of his room he fixed the hem of shirt and grabbed his keys that are hanging on the wall. Looking around the entire floor, the blonde son of Zeus was surprised no to see his half-sister around, he groaned because of it, he needed to wake her up again. He turned his body going to the direction of his sister’s room. He knocked softly on the door and waited for a response, when he heard nothing he finally opened his mouth and said: “Little Mario, wake up and get ready! Skyler is waiting”
Anabel noticed him staring at her reddened cheeks; her mouth quirking up into a smile as she tucked her knees beneath her. She turned the invitation over and over in her hands, following each line and curve that seemed to begin and end the other. It had been a while since she’s attended a dance— the last one was held at least a month before she left for Seattle, and she found herself remembering the way her father used to twirl her around in their living room back home when she was still a little girl; void of any knowledge about the existence of gods and goddesses.
She heard Zeno speak and turned to face him, only to have her chin tilted upward and a kiss placed on her lips. Before she knew it, he was looking down at her— eyes a slight mixture of both grey and blue. Annie smiled, one that she knew was only caused by him “Of course I would and I’ll even get you hot chocolate too, since you seem to like it so much.”
Laughter was made by his vocals as he heard her say that she will make him a hot chocolate. He never got the chance to taste one of her hot chocolate, when given something…well unusual happened. Diverting his attention back to the dance and her answer; his eyes lit up and the paranoia got away from him. He was afraid the she might not say yes or won’t attend the Dance. Now, its all cleared up. All he needed to worry about is the night, he just wished not one horrible thing would happen.
Absentmindedly massaging her palms, he blinked and look back at her gaze; his heart suddenly beat faster when he looked at her, surprised by that he sat there paralyzed, his mind not working coherently. Unrealistic as they say, but the only girl that can make him feel that way is Anabel—make him feel that way with ease—weird but true.
He blinked repeatedly and tried to speak, he scratched his temples with his free hand as no sound came out his mouth. Clearing his throat he tried once again, now not failing “I like hot chocolates, yeah. Let’s make some with whip cream and lets be sure to drink this time” he teased.