Life is like a rose. Unexpectedly prickly, unexpectedly beautiful. But what you do with that rose changes its life, not the lives of birds that surround it. What you do with yourself changes your life, not the life of the girl next door.
Looking at Kyos, I wondered if his death would really change anything. We’d all been through so much. We went from oblivious students at Athens’ School to Greek Heroes in a matter of weeks. We’ve changed and grown so much and our friendship is stronger than ever. Would Kyos’ death really be the end of all this madness? Would things return to the way they were? Would we still be friends?
Kyos’ eyes twinkled with humour as Aria and Phoebe pushed him to his knees at the base of the throne. His neck exposed to the blade of my sword. I was sure he knew of my insecurity. I looked at Aria; her eyes were hard and forthcoming. I was sure she wanted to kill Kyos more than anything. Phoebe on the other hand was watching me with a hesitant expression, the colour of eyes making them look like they were moving and swaying like an untamed ocean.
Astrid and Grace were standing off to my left with expressions I didn’t understand – they looked sad. But it wasn’t because of the fight. It was because of the result my one strike to Kyos would do.
I flashed a glance at Thalia. She was sitting in the corner of the throne room, her face half hidden by the shadows of the room. Her eyes flickered to mine, proud and just. Suddenly her voice radiated inside my head:
“Old Habits Are Hard To Break, Sophia. Some Answers Aren’t Worth Finding Out.”
I stared at her, but her face remained expressionless in the gloom of the shadows. I looked down at Kyos. He was smiling, almost like he wanted me to kill him. I closed my eyes and thought. Kyos’ death wouldn’t change things. Things will never be as they were. I wanted to hear Thalia tell me what to do, but I knew she wouldn’t. this was a choice I had to make.
Kyos deserved to die. He’s destroyed the world with his endless quest to destroy Olympus. So many of my friends have been lost.
But I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I looked at Thalia and shook my head. Bronte clattered to the floor. Kyos’ expression morphed to surprise, then confusion. He looked up at me and frowned.
I met his eyes and said quietly:
“Death Is Never The Answer.”