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Braids and Memories

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Occasionally, when Annabeth had time or was bored enough, she would braid her hair. She’d do the most intricate braids and sometimes when they were in the forest, Percy would weave small flowers into it, creating a beautiful flower crown. The pink and purple flowers complemented her blonde hair, creating a golden halo around her head when in sunlight. Being a daughter of Athena helped too, natural picking anything that required any weaving. Like her quest. Which she didn’t want to think about. She sighed as she put her brush down, picking up a hair spray to help with the frizziness of her hair. She deftly wove her hair into another delicate, this time down her back instead of going around the crown of her head. She pulled some sections of it to make it puffier before standing up to leave the cabin.

Annabeth had just passed the pavilion when Piper spotted her, waving, before walking over.

“Hey Annabeth, what’s up? Woah nice hairstyle”

“Thanks. Do you wanna go for a walk around the forest?”

“I’m down. Let’s go!” Piper pulled Annabeth’s arm laughing as the two made their way towards the forest.

The two made their way through the forest, shafts of buttery sunlight casting a warm glow on the trees. A few nymphs passed them as they trekked through, giggling to themselves. They found a small clearing with enough space for both of them to lie down.

“Okay lie down on your stomach and let me put flowers in your hair,” Piper instructed. Annabeth did as the girl instructed, cushioning her chin on her forearms.

“Ya know, Percy does the same thing when we come here,” Annabeth softly said, focused on a ladybug that was crawling on her finger.

“Are you comparing me to your boyfriend? Are we about to kiss right now?”

“Honestly, in another life, you and I would make a hotass couple.”

Piper nodded, “So, who taught you how to braid your hair like it? Your mum and stepmum don’t seem like the types to teach you.”

Annabeth sighed, looking at the nearby trees as she talked. “You’ve heard of Silena, right? Silena Beauregard. She was the former Aphrodite Cabin Head Counsellor before Drew and she was one of the kindest and most intelligent people I knew. She’s like you, not your typical daughter of Aphrodite. She didn’t like to be in the spotlight and she always stood up for herself and love, always fighting against the Hunters. Her father owns a chocolate shop in Manhatten and she joined camp a few years after I did. We were around the same age and I didn’t really like the other Aphrodite kids but I loved her.”

Piper nodded as she kept weaving flowers into Annabeth’s hair, “I know that she passed but what happened?”

“Well we became best friends and she taught me how to braid my hair. I was always complaining about how hard it was to manage and how I wanted to chop it all off.”
Piper laughed, easily imagining a young Annabeth holding scissors to hair, threatening to cut it off and a faceless girl rushing to stop her.

“Anyways,” Annabeth continued, “Silena said that she’d teach me how to braid my hair because apparently, “My hair is too nice to cut off” and it has “so much potential”. So one summer she taught me how to do basic braids like French and Dutch and then we moved onto harder braids as I progressed. I’m pretty sure my arms have never been stronger since that summer, braiding hair takes so much effort. And she let me practice on her and I’m pretty sure I left a bald patch at one point but she was so nice about it.” Annabeth sighed before looking upwards, “You would have really liked her Pipes, you two would have gotten along so well.”

Piper nodded, rubbing slow circles on Annabeth’s back to comfort her.

“She was a hero. In the Battle of Manhatten, she posed as Clarisse to rally the Ares Cabin. We would have died without them. When we realised it was too late and we couldn’t save her. She died a hero, no matter what anyone else says. Clarisse and Silena were really close, and she was devastated when Silena died. That’s why no one mentions Silena around Clarisse. She was my sister and I miss her so much.”

Piper turned Annabeth towards her, and gently hugged the girl, wrapping her arms around her friend as tight as she could and whispered, “She sounds wonderful and I wish I could have met her.”

Annabeth mutely nodded and they both stood to head back to the cabin.

“Every time I braid my hair I’m reminded of her. I know I don’t do it often but I try my best to reflect her beauty and her kindness.”

“Well you look like Rapunzel with all the flowers and I think Silena would be proud of you.”

“Yeah, I hope she is.”

“No, I know she is.”

Piper gripped Annabeth’s hand tightly as they reached the edge of Camp, Annabeth gripping hers back just as tightly.