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Born a Roman, die a Roman

–Michael to Jason Grace, The Blood of Olympus.

Michael Varus was the son of Janus and was one of the praetors of the Twelfth Legion Fulminata back in the 1980s and a member of the Fifth Cohort.


Early Life

Michael was born to Janus, the Roman god of choices, and an unknown mortal woman.

When he was old enough, like all Roman demigods and legacies, he was brought to the Wolf House and survived the training Lupa gave him. He eventually made his way south to Camp Jupiter and became a Probatio in the Fifth Cohort.

Eventually he became one of the two praetors of the legion.

Leading his Legion to Death

Michael was apparently ambitious and chose to pursue his ambitions, against the advice of the augur at the time, who told him the Prophecy of Seven was not for him. He led the Fifth Cohort north to Alaska where his hubris was rewarded with the massacre of the cohort by Alcyoneus. The eagle was lost, along with most of the legion's Imperial Gold weaponry. The Fifth has been regarded as "cursed" since the incident and labelled an outcast by the rest of the legion ever since.

The Heroes of Olympus

The Son of Neptune

Janus, his father

Michael is working for Gaea for a second chance at life. His ghost and others of his cohort attack Hazel Levesque, Frank Zhang, and Percy Jackson

However, Frank frees Thanatos and he sends the ghosts of the former legion back to the Underworld, where they are sent to the Fields of Punishment for all eternity for their treason against the gods.

The Blood of Olympus

Michael appears in Odysseus's palace as a ghost brought back by Gaea and tells Jason Grace that he can't leave as someone has come to see him, just before the ghost of Jason's mother Beryl appears. Michael later battles and stabs Jason with an Imperial Gold gladius as he says “Born a Roman, Die a Roman.” He is then defeated by Piper McLean and is sent back to the Underworld.


Michael has dark hair and sunken eyes. His tattoo consists of his father's two faces, SPQR, and six lines for his years of service. His attire includes a Camp Jupiter shirt under ice covered legionnaire armor. He is adorned with a praetor symbol and the Fifth Cohort emblem.


Not much is known about his personality in his original life but he was likely ambitious and headstrong by leading his men against the augur's wishes. When he returned he became a vengeful person who wanted to destroy the gods. 


  • Illusion Awarness: Michael had the ability to see through lies and deceptions, seeing through Hazel's illusion where all the other undead were fooled. 
  • Swordsmanship: As a former praetor of Camp Jupiter, he is most likely a skilled swordsman. He is seen stabbing Jason Grace with a sword.


  • Michael is a a masculine given name of Hebrew origin meaning “who is like god”.
  • Varus means "crooked" in Latin.


  • Varus was the cognomen of Publius Quinctilius, a Roman Governor (and overall military commander of the province) of Germania (part of modern day Germany), who lost three legions in the battle of Teutoberg forest, one of Rome's most famous defeats; Michael Varus' name may be a play on this other unfortunate individual.
  • Michael Varus is the only mentioned Roman demigod who was at Ithaca when the heroes went there.
The Heroes of Olympus
Core Series: The Lost Hero | The Son of Neptune | The Mark of Athena | The House of Hades | The Blood of Olympus
Main Characters: Jason Grace | Piper McLean | Leo Valdez | Percy Jackson | Frank Zhang | Hazel Levesque | Annabeth Chase | Reyna Ramírez-Arellano | Nico di Angelo | Gleeson Hedge
Secondary Characters: Hylla Ramírez-Arellano | Dakota | Tyson | Ella | Octavian | Halcyon Green | Dr. Howard Claymore | Alabaster C. Torrington | Lamia | Iapetus/Bob
Minor Characters: Rachel Elizabeth Dare | Grover Underwood | Thalia Grace | Fleecy | Mrs. O'Leary | Kinzie | Arion | Calypso | Lou Ellen Blackstone | Chiron | Will Solace | Tristan McLean | Don | Julia | Jacob | Michael Varus | Burly Black | Medea | Midas | Lityerses | Phineas | Otrera | Echo | Narcissus | Sciron | Pasiphaë
Olympian Gods: Zeus | Hera | Poseidon | Hades | Ares | Demeter | Athena | Apollo | Artemis | Hephaestus | Aphrodite | Hermes | Dionysus
Minor Gods: Achelous | Aeolus | Asclepius | Boreas | Eurus | Hecate | Iris | Hypnos | Keto | Khione | Kymopoleia | Mithras | Nemesis | Nike | Notus | Phorcys | Serapis | Thanatos | Triptolemus | Zephyros
Roman Gods: Jupiter | Juno | Neptune | Pluto | Mars | Minerva | Ceres | Lupa | Bellona | Fortuna | Janus | Terminus | Vulcan | Mercury | Apollo (Roman) | Diana | Venus | Bacchus | Pomona | Aquilon | Hercules | Cupid | Auster | Favonius | Letus | Victoria
Giants: Enceladus | Porphyrion | Alcyoneus | Polybotes | Ephialtes | Otis | Damasen | Clytius | Mimas | Orion | Hippolytos | Thoon | Periboia
Undead: Gray | Zombie
Primordial Gods: Gaea | Tartarus | Ourae | Nyx | Chaos | Ouranos | Akhlys | Hemera | Elpis | Spes
Monsters and Magical Creatures: Cynocephali | Gorgon | Gryphon | Harpy | Basilisk | Lycanthrope | Gegeines | Cyclops | Katobleps | Unicorn | Giant Eagle | Ichthyocentaur | Satyr/Faun | Storm Spirit | Laistrygonian Giant | Lares
Related Content: Rick Riordan | Haley Riordan | Percy Jackson and the Olympians | Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Ultimate Guide | The Demigod Files | The Demigod Diaries | The Son of Sobek | The Singer of Apollo | The Staff of Serapis | Percy Jackson's Greek Gods | Percy Jackson's Greek Heroes | The Crown of Ptolemy | Demigods & Magicians | Demigods of Olympus | Percy Jackson Demigod Collection