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With the Lights On

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The STD clinic on campus is not a place Nico likes being, but he’s pretty certain he’d like herpes even less. Not that he isn’t safe, of course, but if he’s going to have his slutty college years he might as well be responsible about it.

He’s waiting to be called, reading one of the books he’s supposed to read for class, when he hears someone clear their throat. He looks up, annoyed, only to see the exact reason he’s at the STD clinic.


Nico sighs. “Hi.”

Clearly Mr. Golden Sun (that name had started out as a joke, but he still can’t remember his goddamn name) hadn’t thought past this point in the conversation, because all that happens is he keeps awkwardly looking around, bouncing on the balls of his feet once again, until eventually he smiles (Nico can’t help but notice how nice of a smile it is) and says, “well, uh. I’m clean.”

Nico stares at him, unsure what he’s supposed to say to this. “Okay,” he says, rather slowly. “Thank you. I’m still going to check with the doctor.”

To Nico’s utter dismay he sits across from him. “Are you? Like -”

“I don’t have any STD’s,” he says drily, but he is furiously texting Jason as he says it.

To: Jason

(11:17) help me Mr Golden Sun is at the STD clinic

Jason’s reply, a few minutes later, is incredibly unhelpful.

From: Jason


To: Jason

(11:21) FUCK OFF what do I do he is trying to make small talk

From: Jason

(11:23) are you talking about how clean your dicks are

(11:23) wait is he clean??

To: Jason

(11:24) fuck off Grace. He says he is but I’m not going to trust the word of a dude I don’t even know

From: Jason

(11:25) so you’ll fuck ppl you don’t know but you won’t trust them? I think you've got it backwards

To: Jason

(11:26) god I hate you

Nico hadn’t realized he had made an angry noise at his phone until the guy says, “Are you all right?” He looks up in irritation.

“Yeah. Fourteen years of my goddamn life I went without having friends and the first one I decide to get turns out to be the most annoying asshole on the planet. Figures.”

He is so busy texting angry threats to Jason that he doesn’t even realize what he had said until the guy says, “You didn’t have friends until you were fourteen?”

Nico closes his eyes and curses himself, but when he looks up Mr. Golden Sun isn’t laughing at him, or anything, and the pity he normally sees whenever he tells Hazel this shit is absent too. Nico doesn’t know what the fuck would make him spill this shit to a stranger (even if it happened to be a stranger who gave exceptional oral sex) but it’s out there now and all he can do is glare.

“Yes. No. It’s – it’s complicated.” And it’s none of your business.

“Okay. I guess it’s not really my business, is it?”

“Not in the least.”

He leans back, and Nico feels momentarily guilty for how rude he’s being, but he really hadn’t planned on meeting his one-night stand at the STD clinic and now that he has he definitely isn’t happy about it.

“Di Angelo,” he hears a nurse call. He stands up and starts to walk away before he realizes he should probably say goodbye.

The nicer you are to people the more they’ll want to be friends with you, Bianca had said once, to which he had replied I don’t want people to be friends with me. I have you.

“Bye, I guess.”



He is smiling widely. He has great teeth. Nico can vaguely recall that he had tasted good, even with all the alcohol on his breath.

“That’s what your name means. Angel.”

Nico, looking at him incredulously, nods his head. “I know. I speak Italian.”

Then he walks away before he gets even more involved.

This guy really didn’t understand the fundamental concept behind one-night stands.

Nico sits through two lectures and drinks about three cups of coffee. Gazing at the empty cup in his hand, he can’t help but agree with Jason – one of these days he really is going to keel over and die.

“He knew what your name meant?”

“So he had a basic understanding of Italian, big fucking whoop.”

“I think the fates are trying to pull you together.”

He glares at Piper. “The fates can fuck right off.”

“It’s so fun to be around you,” Jason says with a smirk, roughing up Nico’s hair, who manages to glare even more fiercely.

“It’s not like it’s a big campus. It’s not the first time I’ve seen someone I had a thing with, but it’s the first time one of them talked to me. It was just… inconvenient.”

“I think you’re crushing on him.”

“This isn’t seventh grade, McLean.”

“Look on the bright side, Nico,” Jason says, flinging his arm around Nico’s shoulder. “At least the fates are trying to set you up with someone who’s STD free!”

“I’M GOING TO BED,” he shouts, shrugging out from underneath Jason’s arm. He can hear Piper and Jason giggling behind him and he strongly resists the urge to flip them off.

They mean well, Bianca would have said.

Not that that helps him now.

Early next morning he wakes up to his phone ringing. When he sees who's calling he groans.


“I think she’s about to speak!”

Nico rolls over and wipes sleep from his eyes. “She is three months old, Percy, she is not about to speak.”

“She is, she’s going to speak, my child is a goddamn prodigy.”

“She’s not going to speak.”

“Listen to her.”

“Percy –”

He hears a vague spitting noise which he can only assume is Percy’s daughter. He sighs.

“Percy –”

“Did you hear that?”

“I did, she said ‘Uncle Nico, go back to bed.’”

“You spoil everything, go wake up Jason.”

“I am not going to wake up Jason.”

“Why not?”

“Because it is –” he removes the phone from his ear to check the time – “6:30 in the goddamn morning and your daughter is not talking.”

“What do you think her first words will be?”

“Probably ‘my father is a moron.’”

He can practically hear Percy grinning. “I’m pretty sure she’s the most beautiful child in the whole world.”

Nico rolls his eyes. “Yes, because you’re not at all biased.”

“Seriously, from a completely objective perspective, she’s definitely the cutest, most beautiful baby that has ever existed.”

“I thought I told you to stop calling me this early in the morning to gush about your child.”

“But she is so freaking cute –”

“Percy,” he says, with way more patience then Percy Jackson probably deserves. “I’m glad you’re taking to fatherhood so well, but some of us have class early in the morning.”

“Fine, fine, but will you tell Jason when you see him? And Piper! And Leo –”

“I will take out an ad in the school newspaper, Percy, now please let me go back to bed.”

“Wait! Say goodnight to Allison!”

“Percy!” There’s that spitting noise again. He sighs. “I know you can’t understand me but I promise when you are a teenager and hating your father that you can hide out in my house and I will buy you alcohol –”

“Nico!” Nico smirks. “You are not buying my daughter booze.”

“Well not right now, all the stores are closed –”

“Point taken, I will not call you again! Goodbye.”

Nico hangs up the phone and stares at it for a while, wondering if there would ever be a time in his life when he would be able to ignore Percy Jackson.