We Check In to C.C.’s Spa and Resort
In this chapter, Annabeth shares more of the prophecy, the two meet one of Odysseus’s old “friends,” and I have one or two introspective moments about my whole Michael Reads experience. I’ve got a lot to babble about here, so let’s get to it.
First, the prophecy: The next kid of the Big Three who lives to age sixteen will become a weapon to either save the age of the gods or destroy it. So it’s in the gods’ interests to kill Percy, really. Except a) as Annabeth points out, that would piss off Poseidon (but it’d be him against the rest of ’em) and b) the gods MIGHT be prophecy-savvy enough by now to know that any attempts to kill him could very well fail and give Percy incentive to end the gods’ age.
So they’ll need to be very, very careful when they murder him. 😉
I find myself wondering if there’s a child of Hades stashed away somewhere, or another child of Zeus’s. In fact, I’m going to go on record right now as saying I think one of those is true. I’m also curious if Thalia will return to life at some point. That Luke asked what she’d think of everything could be considered foreshadowing, right?
By the way, if I’m ever in trouble, a short distance away from a safe place, and someone with supernatural powers is going to help me, please let them help me by stopping whatever’s after me or carrying me to the safe place instead of turning me into some manner of flora.
And then they find the island of “C.C.” and walk into another trap.
Annabeth and I were used to traps, and usually those traps looked good at first. So I expected the clipboard lady to turn into a snake or a demon, or something, any minute.
So Percy’s getting smarter! Except that he knows he’s in the monster-festooned Bermuda Triangle and still thinks the various derelict ships and planes he see are replicas for tourists. But this can probably also be filed under things that are the fault of his strung-out mental state at the time, I suppose.
And that’s when I had my aforementioned introspection. I should judge less harshly. Not everyone knows about Greek mythology enough to see a resort island by “C.C.” and know that the witch Circe is likely to try to turn Percy into a pig. In fact, this is rather how the ancient Greeks experienced their theater. Most everyone in the audience knew the story of Oedipus, so when they saw a play on the subject by Aeschylus or Sophocles, it wasn’t so much about seeing where the story ends up as it was about the drama of seeing Oedipus experience his fate.
In other words, one of Percy’s tragic flaws is a failure to study Greek mythology, and now we’re going to watch him fall prey to that, and then see how he gets out of it. And I can get on board with that.
What’s more, Percy’s encounter with Circe adds an additional layer to the original myth in the sense that it’s explored through a teenager’s self-consciousness. Come to think of it, the story of Circe, and “unlocking your true self,” would make an interesting vehicle for exploring modern ideas of identity, attitudes, and gender roles.
But I digress.
- The prophecy gave a hint or two about what Percy–or whoever reaches age sixteen–might wind up doing, if Annabeth’s hesitation at the question means anything.
- Percy’s thought here bugged the heck out of me: “You couldn’t just go around announcing that your mom was Athena, the goddess who invented the loom. Most people would lock you in a rubber room.” It’s not like they’re walking through Wal-Mart or something. They’re in the frelling Sea of Monsters and the woman is weaving three-dimensional images while wearing a magical dress. Trying to keep one’s half-blood heritage hidden is a good idea here for other reasons, but not for that.
My favorite line/quote from this chapter comes from Circe:
“Curse Hermes and his multivitamins!”
It made me laugh both for the modernized goofiness, and the fact that I can honestly say that’s a phrase I’ve never heard or read before. They should market those…