New York City, USA 07:31
“Thalia!” The woman flailed as she sat bolt upright in her bed, wiping sleep from her eyes. “Thalia, I need you to wake up, something’s happened!”
“Mm I’m up, I’m up…” As she looked up, her blue eyes met the familiar chocolate brown of Reyna’s. “Rey? What’s going on are you in trouble?”
The Puerto Rican shook her head, simply looking over her shoulder in explanation. Thalia dragged herself from her bed to stand with the other woman, finding herself in a hospital as she walked towards her.
“I’m not, she is… Her name is Annabeth, she’s one of the others.” Reyna moved to pick up the girl’s file as she spoke, showing Thalia the MRI images inside. “Janus appeared to me, we got in a car chase an he’s been arrested. They won’t let me see him, but we talked through the connection when I was waiting to be rejected a visit in the prison. We have to get her out, he said she needs our help.”
Thalia walked with the file around her studio apartment, making her way to her laptop on the dining room table. It took her a few moments to be able to hack the hospital’s systems, but she got in.
Reyna watching over her shoulder as she navigated its mainframe to pull up the patient files on Chase, Annabeth.
“This says she’s scheduled for a brain operation, something about a connection of the frontal lobes?” Reyna shrugged as Thalia looked back at her.
“That’s what makes us different. Homosensorium have a connection of the frontal lobes that allows them to connect with each other. Janus explained it and me and Will found it to be true.” Both girls turned to meet Nico’s gaze as he strode into the room, perching himself on Thalia’s dining room table.
“What does that mean for her?” Nico looked apologetic at Reyna’s question.
“If her doctor is allowed to carry this operation out, then she’ll be cut off from us, and she could die…”
“Her doctor has done this before.” Thalia’s voice pulled the other two’s attention back to her and the screen she was looking at. “It doesn’t specify but it says he’s a specialist.”
“I’m not liking the sound of a guy who specialises in lobotomising people.” Nico stated simply, the other two nodding their agreement. “Does it say when she’s due in for the operation?”
Athens, Greece 14:48
Annabeth blinked awake to the sound of beeping off to one side. Squinting at the brightness so she could just about make out the features of her brother Malcolm’s face.
“Dad, she’s awake.” Annabeth tightened her jaw as she heard her father sigh and close a book. Of course he came to see her now. She really didn’t care for dealing with the man right now, her head was still pounding from the fall she’d taken, she was sure talking to her father would only make that so much worse.
“Well it’s about time. What were you thinking huh? Riding that thing without a helmet. It’s dangerous Annie.”
“Don’t start.” She managed to croak out to the man. “Where’s Piper?”
Annabeth scanned the room, disappointed but not surprised to find that her girlfriend wasn’t their - her father had never liked her.
“The hospital only allows family in the ICU Annabeth.” The girl scoffed at his comment, rolling her eyes slightly.
“She is my family.”
Fredrick Chase had set his jaw and sighed at his daughter, moving to stand just next to her bed as the doctor and a nurse had come to explain the situation to the blonde now that she was awake.
“Please, just listen to what Doctor Metzger has to say. If you still want me to go after that, then I’ll leave.”
The blonde nodded her agreement, turning to face the older man that was holding her file. He clipped her MRI images to a light board so she could see them as he explained the problem… He said there was something wrong with her brain, a joining of the frontal lobes, he said they were going to have to perform severely invasive surgery to separate the frontal lobes of the brain.
“And if I don’t have the surgery?” She’d asked nervously.
“Then it may start causing you problems. Hallucinations, voices, feelings, it can become very serious Miss Chase.”
“He said you could be dead within months Annie.” Her father chipped in from the other side of the room.
“Dad?!” Malcolm cut in but his sister cut him off as tears rolled down her face.
“Get out…” Fredrick quirked an eyebrow at her and scoffed, making to argue before he was cut off. “Get out Dad! Get out! I don’t want you here!”
The man was guided out of the room by her brother, and the two hospital officials followed them out. Leaving Annabeth sobbing to herself in the room.
“Well he’s a dick huh?”
The blonde turned at the sound of the voice. A woman was stood, leaning against the side table as she typed on a laptop. Annabeth didn’t recognise her. She had short spiky black hair and almost electric blue eyes, her skin particularly white in contrast to the darkness of her hair.
“He said I would hallucinate.”
“This is not a hallucination Chase. My name is Thalia, I live in New York with my brother, and I’m a hacker. Janus got in contact with Reyna, who reached out to me, we’re trying to help get you out of this okay?”
Annabeth stared at the other woman, this wasn’t real. There was something wrong with her brain. This was a hallucination. She was a daughter of Athena, how did this happen to her? She was
supposed to have a healthy brain, it should have worked better than most other people’s, she wasn’t supposed to have complications like this.
“Annabeth.” Grey eyes returned to Thalia as she spoke. “You are not hallucinating. It’s difficult to explain. Janus called us homosensorium, it’s an ancient species closely related to homosapiens, we have connections to other members of our species - particularly with those in our clusters, those we were born alongside. You know there is something wrong with what the doctors are telling you
Annabeth, you’re far beyond average intelligence. We all know when we’re being lied to Miss Chase, we just don’t want to believe it… You know this isn’t right, and if you want our help, we’ll be here.”
The woman was gone then, and Annabeth leant back heavily against her pillow. Gods, was she going crazy?!
Then the phone next to her bed started ringing.
“Oh don’t answer it, it’s just in your head, it’s in your head.”
Annabeth sighed frustratedly and picked up the ringing phone anyway.
“Annabeth?! Oh thank the Gods, are you okay?” Annabeth sobbed down the phone at the familiar voice on the other end of the line.
“Pipes. I’m so glad to hear your voice, where are you?”
“I’m in the hospital baby, Silena let me use her phone codes. I saw your dad on the way out, are you okay?”
“No, Pipes, they’re saying there’s something wrong with my brain… that the hallucinations are part of it. I don't get it though, it feels so real. Like the man that was with the lady that died, I saw him Pipes, he was in the streets on the way to the Parthenon.”
“Caucasian guy, brown hair, leather jacket?”
“Did I tell you that?”
“No baby, you were taking photos before you collapsed… and that guy is looking right at you. Not so crazy after all love.”
“Oh my Gods, they’re right. The doctors are lying. I’m okay?”
“You’re perfect my love… but your father signed your papers already, so you can’t just sign yourself out. Don’t worry though, Annie, I will burn this building down before I let anyone touch that beautiful brain okay? We’ll figure this out.”
Annabeth was acutely aware of the hot tears trickling down her cheeks as she spoke to her girlfriend, only then interrupted when she heard Silena speaking rapidly in the background.
“I have to go love, stay strong. I love you.”
“I love you too Pipes…” That was it, the line went dead. But Annabeth allowed herself to smile, she would get out of this, she trusted Piper with her life even if she wasn’t sure she could trust herself with it.