It’s always bittersweet to see kids move on from Camp Half-Blood and enter adult life. But we can take solace in the fact that there’s always a new crop of young and confused demigods ready to take their bunk beds.
What can we say? The gods just can’t seem to stay out of mortal affairs.
With so many fresh faces popping up at Camp Half-Blood day after day, we can’t help but wonder: do any of them have the potential to become the next Percy Jackson, Annabeth Chase, or Nico di Angelo?
We’ve already seen a few of the newer recruits risk their lives and stand against impossible odds to save not only their fellow demigods but also the entire world. And all before they’ve even learned how to drive. This is why we’re giving these members of the younger set the following awards:
Most Accomplished in the Shortest Period of Time—Meg McCaffery
Since her very first appearance in the Riordanverse, Meg has shown that she doesn’t need the help of no stinkin’ god in order to make her way in the world. In fact, we know of one god who needed her help to survive the evil Triumvirate. Let’s be honest, Lester wouldn’t have gotten anywhere without her by his side.
Meg may not have always been angelic, but in the end, she proved to be a hero through and through. And her takedown of those megalomaniacal Roman emperors put her way ahead of her peers in terms of accomplishment. But what really makes Meg stand out is her ability to stand up for herself and her fearlessness in challenging gods when they step out of line. Typically, demigods don’t start talking back to their godly parents until they’re at least 17.
Most Useful in Battle—Kayla Knowles
This daughter of Apollo demonstrated her valor at a very young age during the fateful Battle of Manhattan, as seen in The Last Olympian. After that, she helped save the day against Nero’s forces in both The Hidden Oracle and The Tower of Nero.
In addition to being Camp Half-Blood’s most gifted archer, Kayla is also one of their top healers. Few demigods can claim to possess the talents of both Apollo and Artemis, but Kayla is the rare double threat. Though she can get a little overwhelmed by the more unsettling aspects of demigod life, e.g. when she was nervous about getting inside the Gray Sisters’ taxi at the start of The Sun and the Star. Doesn’t she know that their car service is the most reliable way to travel from Long Island these days?
Most Likely to Succeed (in the Real World)–Austin Lake
We can’t mention Kayla without also giving a shout-out to her half-brother, Austin. He was right by her side in the battles listed above. But while Kayla wants to make a career out of her archery skills, Austin is more focused on the other gift he inherited from his father: divine musicality.
Outside of camp, Austin is already making a name for himself as a prodigious young saxophonist and violinist. Jazz, classical, easy listening . . . Austin can do it all. It’s only a matter of time before he’ll be selling out stadiums around the world.
Austin may not be leading the charge against an army of Titans anytime soon, but that’s totally okay! He’s meant for a different kind of life. If nothing else, all his training and battle experience will help him survive the cutthroat world of the music industry.
Hmm . . . actually, maybe he needs a few more battles against forest bulls and giant automatons before he’s fully prepared for that nonsense.
Biggest Comeback—Paolo Montes
The less said about what happened to Paolo during the Three-Legged Death Race, the better. But we have to award the son of Hebe with something for his endurance.
Let’s just say that we’re happy that his fellow campers were able to go out on a limb and give him a hand after things went sideways.
Paolo serves as a reminder that while the daily activities at Camp Half-Blood aren’t totally harmless, you can still get a leg up over your fellow campers as long as you manage to keep your head on your shoulders.
Ones to Watch Out For (Seriously, Watch Out)—Julia Feingold and Alice Miyazawa
Camp Half-Blood wouldn’t be complete without at least a couple of notorious pranksters. These daughters of Hermes stepped into the Stoll brothers’ shoes during the Trials of Apollo. When Julia and Alice aren’t filling toilets with stink bombs or dropping frozen bugs into the orange juice, they’re practicing their divine thieving skills or attempting to uncover the campground’s secrets.
Who knows when (or even if) these two troublemakers will grow out of their desire to make mischief. But better to have any child of Hermes at Camp Half-Blood instead of on the street. It’s much safer to keep those kids where we can see them.
Just, uh, maybe also keep an eye on your toothbrush. You don’t want to know what these two did to the ones they found in Cabin 6.
Which younger camper do you think has what it takes to hit the big time? Be sure to let us know your favorite!