I've battled the Reapers of Chaos before--and survived. But this time I have a Bad, Bad Feeling it's going to be a fight to the death. . .most likely mine.
Yeah, I've got my psychometry magic, my talking sword, Vic, and even the most dangerous Spartan on campus at my side in Logan freaking Quinn, but I'm no match for Loki, the evil Norse god of chaos. I may be Nike's Champion, but at heart, I'm still just Gwen Frost, that weird Gypsy girl everyone at school loves to gossip about.
Then someone I love is put in more danger than ever before, and something inside me snaps. This time, Loki and his Reapers are going down for good . . . or I am.
Praise for the international bestselling Mythos Academy series
"Lots of twists and turns and a surprise ending will leave the reader breathless!" --RT Book Reviews on Kiss of Frost, 4 Stars
"Humor, snark . . . a world you won't want to leave." --Heroes & Heartbreakers
“This is pointless.”
Daphne Cruz, my best friend, leaned forward, stared into the bathroom mirror, and put another coat of gloss onto her lips. Sparks of magic the same princess pink color as her gloss streamed out of the Val
kyrie’s fingertips and winked out as they hit the porcelain sink below the mirror.
“Pointless,” I repeated. “Point. Less.”
Daphne gave a noncommittal reply, capped her gloss, and dropped the tube into the enormous purse hanging off her arm. She reached into the depths of the designer bag and pulled out a hairbrush, ignoring me as she started smoothing out her golden locks. Which, of course, were already perfectly smooth. Daphne never went anywhere without looking her best.
“C’mon,” I said, not ready to give up on my rant yet. “You know I’m right about this. The day is sure to end in disaster.”
Daphne finished with her brush, put it away, and plucked a silver compact out of her purse. She smoothed a bit of powder onto her already flawless amber skin and gave herself a critical once-over in the mirror, picking a tiny piece of lint off her pale pink cashmere sweater.
I drew in another breath to continue with my tirade, but Daphne snapped her compact shut, interrupting me before I could get started again.
Daphne looked at me in the mirror, her black eyes finally meeting my violet ones. “Geez, Gwen. Relax. We’re out on a double date. We’re supposed to be, you know, having fun. Not worrying about Reapers coming to ruin everything.”
I glowered at her. She might be able to relax, but worrying about Reapers was something
I did pretty much twenty-four-seven these days.
My left hand slid over to my right wrist, and my fingers wrapped around the bracelet that hung off my arm there. The bracelet itself was unique—several laurel leaves dangling off strands of mistletoe that had been woven together to form a thin chain, all of them made out of silver. I tightened my grip on one of the leaves and waited a few seconds for my psychometry to kick in. But the only sensation I got off the bracelet was the same cool, calm vibe I always felt whenever
I focused on it.
To look at the bracelet, you’d think that it was nothing more than a bit of interesting jewelry. But it was one of the keys to finally defeating Loki and his Reapers of Chaos. At least, that’s what Nike, the Greek goddess of victory, claimed. I served as Nike’s Champion, the girl who carried out the goddess’s wishes here in the mortal realm—and the goddess wanted Loki dead. Something the bracelet was supposed to help me accomplish, even if I hadn’t figured out exactly what to do with it yet.
“Gwen?” Daphne asked, a bit of
exasperation creeping into her voice. “Now what are you brooding about?”
I fiddled with the leaves on the bracelet for a few more seconds before tucking the whole thing back under the sleeve of my purple hoodie.
“I’m wondering how you can be so blasé about Reapers,” I said. “Um, hello? In case you haven’t noticed, Reapers have ruined pretty much everything at Mythos Academy the last few months. Homecoming dance? I end up fighting a Reaper in the library. Winter Carnival weekend? Another fight with a Reaper at the ski resort. Last day of winter break? Fighting
Reapers at the Crius Coliseum. Winter band concert? More Reapers at the Aoide Auditorium. And don’t even get me started on what happened when we went to the Eir Ruins.”
One by one, I ticked the examples off on my fingers. When I finished, I gave her a knowing look. “So why should today be any different?”
Daphne rolled her eyes. She slapped her hands on her hips, causing even more princess pink sparks of magic to erupt out of her fingertips.
“Because today is supposed to be about us—you, me, Carson, and Logan—not about Reapers,” Daphne said. “The rest of us have been having a great afternoon so far, even if all you’ve done is try to ruin things by looking for Reapers around every corner.”
“The Valkyrie’s right,” a voice with a cool English accent chimed in. “You have been a little on edge today, Gwen.”
I reached down, pulled a sword out of the black leather scabbard belted around my waist, and held it up to eye-level. Instead of being plain, half of a man’s face was inlaid into the silver hilt, complete with a hooked nose, a mouth, an ear, and a bright purplish eye that was fixed on me. Vic, my talking sword, the weapon given to me by Nike herself.
“I thought you’d be eager to run into some Reapers today,” I said. “Considering that all you ever do is talk about wanting to kill them.”
Vic didn’t have a shoulder to shrug, so he rolled his one eye instead. “Even I need some down time every once in a while, Gypsy. The Valkyrie’s right. You should enjoy the quiet while it lasts. I, for one, am going back to my nap. You know the drill.”
“Yeah, yeah,” I muttered. “Only wake you if there are Reapers to kill.”
Vic snapped his eye shut. I gave the sword a sour look, even though he wasn’t paying the slightest bit of attention to me anymore. I sighed, then slid him back into his scabbard.
“See?” Daphne said in a smug tone. “Even Vic agrees with me.”
I glared at her again, though she and Vic were both right. I was being a total spoilsport today. But it had been almost two weeks since we’d heard so much as a peep from Agrona Quinn, the head of the Reapers, or Vivian Holler, the girl who was Loki’s Champion and my nemesis. Two long weeks that had no doubt given the Reapers time to regroup—and come up with some new horrible plan to mess with me and the people I cared about.
Just thinking about what the Reapers might be up to made my stomach clench with dread. I’d already lost so much to Agrona, Vivian, and the other warriors, and I knew that it was only a matter of time before they struck again. But Daphne and Vic were right. There was nothing I could do about the Reapers today, and I should enjoy this time with my friends and boyfriend.
Because I might not have much longer with them, if Loki had his way.
“Okay, okay,” I muttered. “I’ll put on a happy face for the rest of the
day.” Daphne gave me a sharp look. “Promise?”
I made an off-center X over my heart, tracing over two scars that marred my skin there underneath the purple hoodie and thick gray sweater I wore. “Promise.”
“Good. Then let’s go,” Daphne said, clamping her hand on my arm and using her great Valkyrie strength to pull me toward the door. “Our order should be ready by now, and I’m in desperate need of a sugar buzz.”
I sighed again, but I let her lead me out of the bathroom.