The Lightning Thief
by Rick Riordan
Language and Communication Quotes in The Lightning Thief
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
"I'm not usually an eavesdropper, but I dare you to try not listening if you hear your best friend talking about you to an adult." (2.26)
What examples of eavesdropping do we see in this story? Do you blame Percy for eavesdropping in this moment? Sometimes the only way Percy can get any information is if he acts a bit sneakily.
"The letters float off the page when you read, right? That's because your mind is hardwired for Ancient Greek. And the ADHD—you're impulsive, can't sit still in the classroom. That's your battlefield reflexes. In a real fight, they'd keep you alive. As for the attention problems, that's because you see too much, Percy, not too little. Your senses are better than a regular mortal's. Of course teachers want you medicated. Most of them are monsters. They don't want you seeing them for what they are." (5.145)
Percy's not "abnormal," he's super-human! After doubting himself for so long and hating the way his brain struggles to read or pay attention, Percy learns that he's in fact a superstar. Education and school in the mortal world is considered to be the means to opportunity, and if Percy's not good at it, then he understands that he won't have opportunity. But how frustrating is that? Just because his brain is wired differently, he's considered a dummy in the mortal world. Can you imagine the relief he must feel transitioning from being considered "bad" at school to a kick-butt demi-god? And it all happens so fast.
Then something happened. I felt a tug in the pit of my stomach. I heard the plumbing rumble, the pipes shudder. Clarisse's grip on my hair loosened. Water shot out of the toilet, making an arc straight over my head, and the next thing I knew, I was sprawled on the bathroom tiles with Clarisse screaming behind me. (5.165)
We see examples of non-verbal means of communication throughout this story, and this moment is one of them. Percy communicates with the water somehow; it has to do with the "tug" in the pit of his stomach. We begin to see that communication is not just reserved for humans, demi-gods, and gods. Nature and animals communicate too.