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PJO/HoO: The Belly of the Beast, Chapter One: My Wish Is Granted - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
PJO/HoO: The Belly of the Beast, Chapter One: My Wish Is Granted
Well, I wanted to get writing again, but obviously, I can't seem to slip into Panem anymore. Drat. But trying out New Rome is fun. I think I'm starting to get Jason's voice.

Belly of the Beast

My Wish Is Granted

I guess I could start out with some kind of warning, like "Be careful what you wish for" or "Don't wish for things you don't understand" or "Always floss after meals," but I won't. I don't think that's really the moral of this story, anyway. The wishing one, I mean. Well, probably not the flossing one, either, though that's at least advice you could follow. No one can follow the warning about wishing, because the whole thing about wishing is that you only do it when you don't know what it is you're being careful of. That's kind of a twisted-up sentence, but you probably know what I mean. If you ever wished for something, you know. Wishes don't have a lot of shape to them. They're not the same thing as dreams or goals. Just sort of… wishes.

Some people wish for fame. They're the ones who have never had it, or been near it. They just imagine that people notice you all the time and when people see you, they faint and tell you how wonderful you are instead of telling you that your homework is late and your bunk is a mess and no one likes you, anyway. Maybe they read about celebrities' heartbreaks -- like having their houses broken into or getting caught snapping at someone because they were in a bad mood or being stalked by photographers until their cars go out of control -- and think, Poor little rich kids. The people who have the magic thing just don't appreciate it, the selfish, vain ingrates. If the wisher had fame, he'd be nice to everyone -- after all, it's the little people who grant fame -- and use it to solve all the world's problems, and everyone would love him.

Some people wish for money. You can't blame them. It solves lots of problems, especially if the problem is not having any, and if they hear about how rich people spend eighty hours a week at work and are unhappy all the time, then that's because those rich people just don't know how to balance their lives. If they had money, they'd spend it on orphanages for puppies, and never miss their kid's softball game.

It's okay to feel that way. There's nothing wrong with it. (Unless, I guess, you go off the deep end and decide to punish the ingrates or whatever.) That's what wishing is for. It's just a thing that you do when you're bored, and it's not like you sit down and think, "I'm going to wish for something really stupid right now."

I didn't wish for fame or money.

No, like an idiot, I wished for adventure.

There's nothing stupider to wish for.

My name is Jason Grace.

I turned thirteen in July, just a couple of months before I got my wish. I guess most mortal kids wouldn't think my life was normal, but it really is, if you happen to be a Roman demigod. I live in the Fifth Cohort barracks. I got promoted to centurion last month over a few older kids, but I had seniority (I'll explain). I play war games and take monster classes. I also take math and English and history and Latin and all the other normal things that everyone takes.

I guess maybe I'm a little weird for a demigod, or at least people think I am. My dad's Jupiter, for one thing. I'm the only son of Jupiter around, since he promised not to have any more kids after World War II (good job on the promise-keeping, Dad, really; keep it up). There are a few Jupiter legacies, though. My friend Bobby is a Jupiter legacy, a great-great-great-grandson or something. He calls me "Uncle Jason" if he wants something.

The only other thing that's weird about me is that I got to camp when I was three. Most people come when they're twelve. I don't remember much about it. My mother took me to Lupa, the wolf goddess. She promised she'd come back -- my mother, not Lupa -- but she didn't. I guess I must have thought I'd find her at camp, because Corey John, the legionnaire who was on guard duty the night I came in, said I started howling like a wolf when he told me that she wasn't waiting for me. My mom's promise-keeping skills are right up there with my dad's, apparently. I make a point of keeping every promise. Maybe I can make up for some of their broken ones.

I believed a lot of weird things when I was little. Mom was coming for me. I had a big sister who was also a demigod child of Jupiter. According to Corey, I even told him that I'd flown partway from the Wolf House. He said I must have accidentally eaten a funny mushroom, or maybe watched too many cartoons.

I was kind of a mascot for a long time. People in New Rome wanted to adopt me when they found out I was a son of Jupiter, but the Augur, Heather Lacroix, told them that I was to grow up in the legion. I've always been glad of that. Other kids tend to forget about the Jupiter thing after a while. Grown-ups never forget about it. If someone had adopted me because I was Jupiter's kid, I'd probably have gotten as spoiled as the rich legacy kids who live in the best parts of New Rome. Maybe more spoiled. I mean, it's one things to have parents who give you self-esteem boosts, but can you imagine having parents who, like, worship you?

(And no, don't pretend it would be fun. I promise: Not fun.)

Anyway, I think I lived with a praetor at first, until I had my first act of valor. I don't remember doing it, because I was four, but it was for one of our Lars, our house spirits. This one's a little boy named Gratius Porcius. I have no idea how he became a ghost, because they never tell, but however it was, he died with his dog, and the dog runs around with him. Apparently, the ghost dog was chasing a ghost cat when it ran into a real dog. The dog barked and tried to attack, and I jumped on it and stopped it. (I wasn't very bright at four, as you may have guessed.) I'm pretty sure it was a joke to call it my act of valor, but as I was living in the army anyway, they must have decided it would count as my entrance.

Then they burned marks on my arm. That I remember. The first time the magical fire hits your arm and burns in your family symbol and your year count? That's memorable. And painful. I got to pick where to stay. I picked the Fifth Cohort, mostly because everyone else was begging for me and even then I knew it was the whole Jupiter's-kid thing that made them want me. The Fifth had nice people, and no one expected them to be… well, children of the king of the gods. Maybe that's more sophisticated than I was really thinking. My co-centurion, Gwen, certainly thinks so. But I'm pretty sure that's exactly where my head was.

Even after I started living in the Fifth, I was mostly just a good luck charm. They'd mess up my hair before war games and put me in the littlest armor, then have me stand around on the sidelines. The other cohorts in the games would pet me, too. It's not a bad way to be a little kid, surrounded by big kids who think you're the best thing ever. Once a year, they'd let me accomplish some little task, so I could get my stripe, and I thought it was just great.

When I turned nine, they had a party for me, then started putting me in regular cohort jobs, and that's when I got normal. I sweep the stables and do pots and pans (when I can get the wind spirits to let me) and have to keep my grades up to keep my standing, just like everyone else. Most people treat me that way. Some are still too easy on me because they're afraid of my father, for some reason. It's not like he drops by and threatens anyone, but I guess they think he might.

Anyway, back to my wish.

I was clearing out basilisk nests in temple of Pomona on the first day of September with my friend (and great-great-great-great-grandnephew), Bobby Botolph. The Fifth usually got stuck with basilisk clearing duties, which was about as dangerous a task as you could get without actually having any glamor attached to it. The things breathed fire and dripped poison. If they got out in the open, they were really hard to kill, because they were fast and deadly. But as fall came, they always sought out the warm spots under the temples, and in there, it wasn't too hard to get them. You just had to push them back into a corner. If the monster class teachers wanted some, you had to hook them and box them, but that time, we were strictly on monster-dusting run. The Ludi Romani would start in four days, and the city elders and the Senate were determined to have no more basilisk-related deaths during the games.

I didn't mind. I've always liked the temples, and Pomona's is one of my favorites. Aside from the sacrifices to her, there's always a shared table of fresh fruit for anyone who's hungry, or who just wants to appreciate abundance. It's like fruit-thanksgiving all autumn long. It always smells good, too. A group of old city women was sitting there when we got in, playing canasta and gossiping. They fussed over us for a few minutes before we started, but were ignoring us by the time we really got into it.

"This'll be our big one for sure, Unc," Bobby said, blowing fire back at a nest under the cornerstone. "I can see it now. I bet it's written on the floor in Gramp's temple. Two descendants of the king of the gods kill temple worms."

I didn't answer, not really. The floor and walls of my father's temple were covered with old prophecies. I doubt anyone knew all of them. But supposedly, if you were destined to do anything important, you'd find it written there somewhere. "Want to look around for one later?"

He shrugged and scooted backward out of the dark corner. "Nah. It never works if you try to make them come true. Remember Michael Varus." He rolled his eyes. Michael Varus had tried to fill a prophecy a couple of decades ago and ended up losing most of the Fifth Cohort, which was why we had such a great snake-clearing detail today.

"I saw one the other day about Furies," I tried as we headed for the next usual hidey-hole, a broken stone at the base of the temple, near the stairs. "At least I think it was Furies."

We got to the stairs, and Bobby gave me the monster-hunting bag, which was full of useful things like fire arrows and Imperial Gold infused nets and matches and duct tape and big can of Raid. We didn't have to talk about working. We'd been working together long enough to know the rhythm. I crouched down and stuck a flashlight under the stairs. There was only one snake, but it was big. I fumbled around for an old, bent piece of sharp Imperial Gold that was no good for anything else and jabbed it down. The basilisk didn't have anywhere to go, and it just crumbled into dust and went back to the underworld. It would probably be back by spring. The little buggers were fast turnarounds.

"You can't beat the Furies," Bobby said. "It's like fighting fate."

We went up the stairs and into the main part of the temple. The old women had stopped playing cards, and were now chatting with a new woman who'd come in. She wasn't dressed Roman style, so I guessed she lived or at least worked on the outside. They made some general cooing noises in our direction when they saw us, but otherwise left us to our work. We didn't talk. It seemed rude to interrupt them.

"A sea monster?" one of them said, eyes wide. "Really? Or is it just another of Cha's vapors?"

Another one laughed. "Do you remember… it must have been '67, down in Haight-Ashbury. He was going through that phase, anyway. He decided that the Greeks had infiltrated the government -- "

The others cracked up, the way they always did when they talked about the sixties. I can't even imagine this place then. "I remember!" one said, then dropped her voice to an imitation of a man with some kind of southern accent. "'It ain't the Man, my man. Not anymore. It's the Andros, brother. The Andros is running the show, and they think no one knows it.'"

They laughed again, and the newcomer said, "And the faun conspiracy!"

"Oh, that's right -- "

" -- they were going to -- "

" -- no, they were pretending to be -- "

" -- and they were really Lords of the Wild, remember? And he -- "

" -- he kept trying to talk to them and join the quest!"

Bobby and I looked at each other and grinned. I wondered what stories we'd be telling each other in here in forty years.

"So, anyway," the newcomer said when the laughing calmed down. "Now, it's a sea monster. Neptune sent it to block off Winchester Bay just like he did with Troy."

"Right. Because that's a very strategic target. And what does he think he did to annoy Neptune?"

"Oyster farming. He thinks it's against the will of the gods."

"Of course. And he's come to this conclusion because…?"

"On the oysters? No idea. But he saw a tentacle out in the water, and there have been a few ships going down. The oceans have been a little testy lately."

The women were quiet for minute, because the oceans weren't the only part of nature that had gotten testy. There'd been a storm out on Mount Tam for a week that the mortals couldn't see. The Senate had been debating sending a team. I offered the Fifth, but they practically laughed me out of the building. Making me a centurion didn't stop them from treating me like the camp pet.

"Well, that's Cha," one of them said fondly. (She pronounced the name like "Chad," but without a "d.") "Wherever he happens to be is the center of the conspiracy."

They gave a quieter, fonder laugh, then someone brought up their book club, which was reading The Deep End of the Ocean, and the conversation drifted to that. It didn't sound like my kind of book.

Bobby and I finished searching the altar for basilisks (for a wonder, there was only one), then headed out into the afternoon. He was unusually quiet. We were almost to the barracks when he said, "I wonder if there really is a sea monster."

I shrugged. "Hundreds, most likely."

"They said it was like Troy. The Trojan Sea Monster was pretty hardcore. I don't remember how it got beaten, but I think there were sacrifices and stuff. Could be serious, Oh Great Centurion." He smiled and raised his eyebrows.

As a centurion, I was required to hem and haw a little bit and talk my soldiers down from silly ideas, but I knew where he was going. A quest. Now that I was a centurion, I could lead one. I could even bring up the idea for one. The Senate would think we were crazy, if the women thought their old friend was, and maybe they'd turn out to be right. Maybe they'd think it was silly enough that it would be cute to let little Jason go questing.

But maybe, just maybe, we could slay a sea serpent and save a town called Winchester Bay.

Okay, I know I already said -- kind of -- that this was a bad idea, but let me repeat myself: This was a really bad idea.

So, being the son of such a responsible and never-erring god as Jupiter, I had to do it.

"I bet they let us go," I said. "We'll get an augury! If the augurs say we can go, we can. The Senate won't argue with an augury."

"That's some Jovian thinking right there," Bobby said. "Come on, Unc. Let's quest!"

And that was all the thinking that went into it. I overheard gossip and decided to have an adventure, because my best friend (and great-grand-nephew of some kind) looked like he was up for it, and it sounded fun.

Come on, I was thirteen. What do you want?

We turned away from the barracks and ran up the hill toward the temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus -- otherwise known as "Dad" or "Gramps" -- and wove through the crowds to the market booths set up out front for Ludi Romani. Some sold sweet drinks and snacks. Others had midway games. But the ones closest to the temple sold sacrifices.

Not animal sacrifices. That would be gross, and someone put a stop to that back in the Middle Ages. But a Roman temple is a Roman temple -- you can always buy something to sacrifice to the gods. There are fancy shops for adults lining the promenade, where you buy jewels in bags, which the augur tears open and spills. There are booths were you can buy bags of old guts from the butcher shop to spill on the altar, but, like I said: Gross. You can even buy Augur-Sicles, which are little bags made from Fruit Roll-ups. They come with a toy dagger. You stab them and spill out little chunks of cherry gummies shaped like guts, and in the middle of them is a little marble that says "Yes" or "No" to your question. It's kind of like a tiny, really violent piñata crossed with a Magic 8 Ball.

But the ones most of the kids at Camp Jupiter used were the toy booths, where stuffed animals were lined up along the shelves, waiting for the slaughter. I'm pretty sure someone Frankensteined them back together afterward and resold them, but we all pretended not to know.

Bobby and I didn’t pick the cheapest one. Cheap sacrifices get bad auguries. The best ones are ones you own and value, but really, I don't own much an augur could use that I especially value. I own some things, but none of them have guts that can strewn out and read. Between the two of us, we were able to scrounge up ten denarii, which was enough for the mid-range toy booth near the stairs. The stuffed animals and dolls were hung from hooks, making it look like a carnival booth. (In fact, during the games, some of the sacrifice booths have pitch-'til-you-win augury sacrifices.)

"What do you think?" Bobby asked, turning over a stuffed truck.

I shook my head. "Do you care about trucks?"

"No. Oh, but hey, my Dad has one. If we can get Dakota on the quest, Dad would let us borrow it."


"He got his license."

"Oh." I looked at a few teddy bears, a stuffed koala, and dinosaur. There was a stuffed Spider-man that I gave serious thought to. But in the end, I kept coming back to a stuffed octopus wearing a pirate hat, with a crooked eyepatch over one eye.

"This looks good for sea monster quest," I said.

Bobby took it and shrugged. "Aye, captain. I believe we've got ourselves a sacrifice!"

I took our money up to the counter and bought the octopus, then Bobby and I went up the steps to the temple. There was a long, winding line, and the senior augur was apparently giving people detailed advice, since it didn't seem to be moving. We ended up behind a bunch of guys from the college who wanted an augury about where to go for winter break. They were apparently sacrificing a wineskin for this.

Bobby named our sacrifice Captain Carbuncle, and made up a long and tragic story about how he ended up trapped on land, never allowed to go back to his native seas because he angered the wrong gods. I mostly ignored him, even when he put the octopus on his head like a hat.

After about half an hour of this, the great door opened and one of the Vestals came out. She was a plain girl dressed in plain brown robes. She used to be in the Third Cohort before she took her vows, but I didn't remember her name.

"The apprentice augur is willing to see pilgrims," she announced. "And his master approves, provided the questions don't require extensive advice."

Most people didn't exactly jump at this. I wasn't even sure who the apprentice augur was. I looked at Bobby.

He shrugged. "We just need a yea or nay. No advice."

It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Really. It did.

We followed the Vestal to the door and down a set of old marble stairs, lit by torchlight. The temple basement wasn't as grand as the upper structure. There were a lot of boxes piled up, and there was a pathetic little rec room where little kids would come during summer Myth School to make macaroni necklaces with the names of the Olympians on them. The Vestal pointed toward it and gave us an apologetic little smile, as if to say, What do you expect if you're willing to see a 'prentice?

"Who's on this, anyway?" Bobby asked.

"No idea."

"It's usually an Apollo legacy. Prophecy. Sometimes one of his half-bloods. Are there are any that are the right age?"

"There are always Apollo kids," I said. "I think Apollo missed some of his health classes."

The door was ajar, and inside, to my surprise, we heard two soft voices. Both guys, from the sound of it. I couldn't make out what they were saying, but one voice was smooth and light and easy to listen to, like some half-baked movie star or boy band guy that all the girls would swoon over. The other one was…

"Aw, no," Bobby said. "No, no way."

My heart sank. I'm not hard to get along with. I don't find other people hard to get along with. But if the second voice belonged to who I thought it did, I decided it might be time to go upstairs and wait for the real augur.

The Vestal was still in the hallway, drifting around. I didn't want to have to explain myself to her.

I sighed and went inside.

The boy standing there was alone. Whoever he was talking to must have left through another door. He was skinny and pimply, and he had lanky blond hair that fell like a curtain over his eyes. He wore a toga over khakis and an Oxford shirt, and on his feet were a pair of very expensive loafers. He'd turned one of the plastic craft tables into an altar, with basins to catch the falling stuffing, and a small statue of Jupiter set on a box of tempura paints. A painting of Apollo was propped up behind him, and he had positioned himself carefully so that his head was at the same level, so that, if we came around to face him head on -- which he'd definitely make us do -- the sacred aura around Apollo's head would be transferred to him.

"Ah!" he said. "I see the girl was able to bring visitors. Jason… Grant, is it?"

"Grace," I corrected. He knew that well enough. "Centurion of the Fifth. Hey, Octavian."

"Oh, yes, of course," he said, giving a broad, fake smile. "I've got my new assignment, as you can see, though I remain a member of the First Cohort!" The smile broadened even more, making Octavian Dunlop look like a lizard. "I suppose you're still on basilisk duty at the Fifth. It's a shame, really."

I clenched my teeth. Octavian was an Apollo legacy, descended several generations down from a half-blood. He bragged about how many years his family had been in New Rome, and how many people he knew. He's the only person I know of who sneers at half-bloods. After all, most of us didn't exactly pal around with our godly parents, and in the mortal world, we simply didn't know anyone who was anyone, by Octavian's standards.

"That's actually what we're here about," Bobby said. "The uncle and I heard about a quest for a sea monster. We need an augury."

"Did you bring letters of recommendation?" Octavian asked.

"No," I said. "I'm a centurion, and I want an augury about a monster threatening the sea coast. That doesn't need letters." And you know it, I wanted to add, but didn't. You know it, and you just want to take the time to remind me how much more connected you are.

"We'll get the letters before the senate meets," Bobby promised and gave Octavian a smile. Bobby's family had been around as long as Octavian's, but he never pulled rank over it. "For now, I brought you this fine sacrifice." He held up the stuffed octopus.

"What sort of quest is this to be?" Octavian asked solicitously. "Something of a dangerous nature?"

"Something that might be nothing," I told him. "It might even end up embarrassing me that I ever asked." I smiled.

He had to know I was playing him, but he didn't respond. His eyes just lit up at the prospect of an embarrassing quest for the Fifth.

I took Captain Carbuncle from Bobby and thrust him at Octavian. "Here. We just need a yes or no."

"I can tell you whether the omens are favorable or not…" He picked up his ceremonial dagger and shook his head. "Well, then," he said, holding the octopus upside down by the tip of one tentacle, "let's see what's in store for you."
12 comments or Leave a comment
shiiki From: shiiki Date: September 4th, 2016 11:53 am (UTC) (Link)
First, I have to thank you because I went to check out Percy Jackson when you last mentioned you might be moving into it. And I'm totally hooked now! It's such a fun ride.

Promising beginning with your story here. I'm interested to see how you'll develop Jason, as he's one of the few characters that I could just never get a handle on. So I can't actually picture his voice myself. The narrative does fit the style of the books, though, but still being clearly a different character from Percy narrating, so that's working out well.

Loved the little details about New Rome and how things work there. I can visualise it all as I read it. As for Octavian ... yes, as charming as ever, he is. The idea that the legacy children might pull more weight than the first-generation half-bloods is interesting (can't remember if that was canon; I'm only on my second read through) and makes me think of the pure-blood/Muggle-born issues in HP.

I'm really looking forward to seeing where you take this!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 4th, 2016 05:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
The series is definitely a fun ride, and I consider The Last Olympian to be the best series wrap-up I've read. (Blood of Olympus, maybe not so much, though it had its moments.) I love the basic decency of the characters. And, of course, the funny stuff. Riordan's love for the myths really comes through.

I'd like to have gotten a better handle on Jason, too. I sort of like him, but I don't feel like I really get him, so that's the goal here.

I think the urban setting of New Rome is a departure from the bucolic Greek setting of Camp Half-Blood, so that should be fun.

On the half-blood vs. legacy, it probably depends on what you're doing. If you're fighting, the super-powerful half-bloods probably have the advantage and are super-wanted. If you're doing politics, a few generations of connections are probably more helpful.
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 4th, 2016 03:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

Very happy that you're writing again, and already pulling so many little nuances and tensions in New Rome. I love the idea that the legacies might look down on the half-bloods - it had occurred to me it might go the other way round, with legacies being seen as "lesser" somehow, but not that they might actually have a certain level of priveledge in terms of having been brought up in New Rome.

It had actually never ocurred to me to wonder how much Jason remembers about his past pre losing his memory courtesy of Hera/Juno - I love the idea that he did have some vague memories of Thalia.

The little details made me laugh too - macaroni necklaces and "myth school" in the summer. But in a world-building sense it completely makes sense - the seasonal rhythm of New Rome is so completely different from Camp Half Blood, because it's there all year round, it has that civilian side that just wasn't there with the Greeks.

Anyway, you probably got that I enjoyed it!

Cate (who has resolved to be good and COMMENT when she likes things)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 4th, 2016 05:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
Jason mentioned that Hera "left" him some memories of Thalia, enough to recognize her picture. I doubt they're very clear memories, though.

Had to do the myth-verse version of VBS, once we were in the temple basement! There's definitely a different vibe to New Rome, particularly the presence of multiple generations, as Percy noticed. (I love how the first thing he thought was that he could grow old there, in some place he belonged, and raise a family. Percy's a neat kid.)

Glad to have you aboard!
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 4th, 2016 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Congrats on starting a new story, and good luck on keeping momentum. Now I clearly need to actually read the PJ series that's been sitting on my shelf for way too long.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 5th, 2016 06:04 am (UTC) (Link)
Heh, it would help since I mean to tie to canon, but at this point, this character is leading an entirely separate life from canon, except for being a half-blood.
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 5th, 2016 06:34 am (UTC) (Link)
Have you ever thought about doing these kind of alternate POV stories for things in the public domain? It seems a shame that you can't make money on what you write, since you are very talented at it.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 5th, 2016 04:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have. Romeo and Juliet from Friar Lawrence keeps coming back (though I run into the question of whether to follow history or Shakespeare when they clash!). Another idea I've had was to follow Lawrence after the story, after he leaves Verona. Maybe, if I can knuckle down and do the historical research necessary, I might do it. (On the other hand, I'm not totally sure I want to go pro. The money would be nice. The headaches? Not so much. ;p)
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 6th, 2016 04:59 am (UTC) (Link)
There is a lot involved in publishing, but from what I've been reading, sounds like fewer in self-publishing. More control, fewer contracts, less pressure. You could be almost as casual about it as your fanfic if you wanted, and with the fanbase you have, you might make more money at it than if you tried for a traditional publisher.
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 6th, 2016 05:01 am (UTC) (Link)
And FWIW, I'd recommend going with Shakespeare (or making up your own variation) when they clash, since that's what the most people would be familiar with and expecting.
From: (Anonymous) Date: September 6th, 2016 04:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Still haven't read the actual series yet, but I'm already getting a kick out of this.
It's such a shift from your THG stuff in not just the tense but the tone of the reader. Like Haymitch, there's a snarkiness and self-depreciation for Jason; however the former's version has an understandably harsh and cold edge to it (come to think of it, even Danny's narration has a level of bitterness), while the latter has the sort of contemporary silliness (trying to find a better term) that comes with youth (even when the topic is serious and he does feel bitter).

It's also fun to see old Roman societal and religious/civic practices upgraded to modern times.

So while the legacies clearly have an advantage of connections and the demigods are the ones "closest" to their respective progenitors, which one would you say has more pressure on them?

Also can't seem to leave settings that are Rome-in-America, can you. :P

Great job so far!

-- FFR
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: September 7th, 2016 02:23 am (UTC) (Link)
Also can't seem to leave settings that are Rome-in-America, can you. :P

Really can't, no! (Of course, part of the conceit of the series lies in the fact that the classical memes have always been a deep vein in American folklore and literature, anyway...)

Jason's had some things happen to him, but nothing like the level of constant abuse Haymitch got, so yeah, the snark is not quite as grim.
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