MEDUSA’S CHALLENGE, PART ONE


Challenge Five
Medusa’s Challenge
Part One

Written by Rebecca King

Twenty-two demigods stood side-by-side, overlooking Medusa’s lair. Thanks to Gaea, Medusa was back in the world. She no longer ran Aunty Em’s Gnome Emporium. Instead she had turned to the internet to sell her lifelike statues. Her new lair did not look like the typical lair in the least. She now lived on a mega yacht even though it looked more like a miniature cruise ship. It was moored out in the bay. Who knew selling statues was such good business. Medusa must have really loved Poseidon to want to live on the water. Being surrounded by water would bring a great advantage to the demigods. Seven children of Poseidon were among them. Rebecca liked the advantage, but she knew the Poseidon kids would not help her team get back. It was why they would rely on the cool boat Nyssa had crafted. Rebecca wondered if the daughter of Hephaestus ever slept. Everyone from both teams, except the Poseidon kids and Sky, would board the yacht from the boat. But first they were waiting for the signal.

***

Atom slowly lifted himself out of the water. It was a good thing he could not get wet as even the sound of dripping water might give him away to the yacht full of monsters. There was a weird smell in the air. It had to be from the monsters. Atom was beginning to wonder if Chiron was trying to get them all killed.

What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger, he thought gritting his teeth together.

He climbed the ladder and at the top looked back down. His siblings waited to climb up. He then looked up into the sky. The daughter of Zeus floated twenty feet above the yacht. Sky flashed a red light signaling that the deck was clear. Atom looked down at his siblings and jerked his head up to let them know to follow. He pulled himself over the railing and onto the top deck of the yacht. He looked around as he pulled out his sword, eyes moving over the lounge chairs and glass tables. The monsters were sleeping. Behind him, Braeden, Cate, David, Dimitris, Percy, and Thuthu were already on deck. He looked at his brothers and sisters, sending a silent prayer of protection over them.

“Ready?” he whispered.

They eagerly nodded their heads. David held the waterproof bullhorn up to his mouth and shouted into it.

“Rise and shine, you ugly monsters! There is a fresh midnight snack waiting on the top deck for you!”

His voice reverberated throughout the ship waking every monster within it. There was movement from inside followed by a loud roar. The Poseidon kids held steady, waiting as the monsters got closer and closer. The door in front of them burst open and out slithered the strangest looking creature. It was shaped like a walrus, but had a face like a dog with sharp, bone crushing teeth. Dark fur lined its body. At the end of its body it had a tail that looked like a horses. The monster was huge.

“What is that?” Thuthu asked. Atom could hear the fear.

He had no clue nor had ever seen such a creature. Sea serpents slithered up behind the walrus-like monster.

“I have no clue. We’ll ask an Athena kid later,” Percy replied. “But let’s get out of here!”

Following the plan, the Poseidon kids turned and jumped into the ocean with the monsters close at their feet.

***

Jason watched as a flood of monsters poured off the boat and into the water to pursue the Poseidon kids. Their job was not going to be easy to keep most of the monsters off the yacht while the rest of the demigods attacked. He turned around to look at the teams. He turned mischievously.

“Let’s go!”

Medusa’s YachtHe jumped off the edge of Nyssa’s boat and flew off across the water towards the yacht. Nyssa’s fast, but virtually silent boat shot off after him carrying the twenty-one demigods. Jason landed on the top deck, running at the closest monster. A sea serpent trying to get over the side of the railing. In his hand, his staff transformed into sword.

“Let me give you a hand,” Jason said.

He sliced the sea serpent in half, sending the monster dust to blow off into the wind. Jason heard a noise and turned around, ready to fight whatever it was. It was a good thing it was not Medusa as he forgot to use the mirror he had brought with him. Instead he was staring at a girl. She was beautiful and looked harmless. She held out a hand towards him, beckoning him closer. In his hand, the sword transformed back into a staff.

Lightning shot out of the sky, or more like from Sky, striking the girl. She burst into dust. Sky landed on the deck and rolled her eyes at him.

“Boys. They always fall for those Empousai.”

Jason could feel his face heating up. “I knew it was one.”

“Righhttt… They’ll need us below deck. Come on!”

***

On the first deck, twenty demigods boarded the ship. Wave after wave of serpents attacked them. They stayed close to each other protecting each other’s backs. It did not matter what team they were on right now. A single bite from the colorful serpents would kill them. Nyssa stayed on her boat, shooting fire at the serpents that tried to escape into the water.

“Guys, cover your ears!” Emily, a daughter of Apollo, shouted.

The demigods slashed a few more serpents around her then clamped their hands over their ears. Emily opened her mouth and began to sing. It was high-pitched in Ancient Greek. With each word, she grew louder and louder. The serpents tried to escape, but the song held them in a trance. Her voice shook the ground. With a small pop, the serpents disintegrated.

Emily grinned and did thumps up to her friends. Using her gift was exhausting, but had been worth it. Kieran ran over and gave her a high five.

“Thanks, Emily,” Rebecca said. “You better stay with Nyssa.”

Emily nodded and walked to the railing. She felt lightheaded. Her kind brother, Jk, noticed and helped her down to Nyssa’s boat.

“Jk, come on!” Rebecca called. “I am not letting Jason beat me to Medusa.”

***

Dilip led the charge as they descended into the depths of yacht. There were no more serpents which was a relief. But he knew they were not the last of the monsters. A deep, rumbling grow kept shaking the yacht.

“This should be far enough,” Ashe advised. “We need to pull out our mirrors. Medusa could be anywhere.”

The demigods whipped out mirrors from their pockets. Becca, a daughter of Aphrodite, had fixed them up with the mirrors. Dilip turned his back and used the mirror to guide him down the hall. It felt very, very wrong to walk backwards. From where they had come from, a door opened and a dozen giggling girls in pajamas poured out. Empousai. The Empousa at the front waved.

“Hey, boys. Come give us a smooch.”

Dilip was tempted to go. Ashe placed a hand on his chest, shoving him back.

“Go. Us girls will take care of these witches,” the daughter of Ares growled. She put up her mirror and brandished a sword. “Girls, attack!”

Twelve daughters of the gods charged the Empousai. Dilip focused on the reflection in the mirror as he descended the stairs. Drew, Jk, Orian, Rodrigo, Dilip, and Mark John followed him as they went into the hull of the yacht.

***

Miya shot arrow after arrow at the fast moving Empousai. The darn monster with blonde pigtails would not hold still. Being a daughter of Apollo made her have excellent shooting skills. But the Empousa kept dodging and blocking the arrows with a pillow. It almost looked like the Empousai were having a pillow fight with the demigods. The pillows were not normal pillows. Arrows nor swords could hurt them. None of the girls had managed to hurt or kill any of the monsters. Ana and Hannah were having the best luck as they faced only one. Ashe, on the other hand, was taking on two. Hannah distracted the Empousa while Ana swung at its legs. One leg was made of wood and the other looked like it belonged to a sheep. It appeared not all Empousai had donkey legs.

Miya backed away from her Empousa and shot an arrow at the other. Too busy with Ana and Hannah, the arrow made its target right in the Empousa’s head. She threw her pillow at Ana. Hannah struck her in the heart and she dissolved to dust.

Ana laughed as she tossed the pillow to the side. “It felt like I was back at a sleepover.”

Hannah and Ana hurried over to help Miya. They went for the same distract and attack tactic until the Empousa was dead. They split up and helped the other girls until there was only one Empousa left. She cowered behind her pillow in the doorway. She did not stand a chance against a dozen demigods. She could not charm her way out of this one.

Before Miya could fire off an arrow or anyone could attack, the Empousa exploded into dust. The pillow dropped away to reveal Jason and Sky.

“Glad I could say you, girls,” Jason said, grinning from ear to ear.

All the girls groaned and rolled their eyes.

To be continued…