The Lonely Mermaid:
Deep in the fathomless depths of the ocean, off the northern most bay of Wehnimers, lived the merpeople; Brave and loyal in aptitude, beautiful and serene in presence, with hair of many rare hue-full shades. The Sire of the Merpeople was regal and fair, with long hair the color of the sandy beaches. He had 4 young daughters of the names of Aquata, Oceanenia, Pearl, and Adriana. Aquata was the oldest of the 4 girls, with hair of chestnut and eyes the crystal blue of the deepest depths of the great blue ocean. Mermaids were very dutysome people, with a purpose to each. Aquata, being the daughter of a king, was to look fabulous and act as a princess should. Aquata wasn't a very good princess, unfortunately. She was wild and adventuresome in nature; racing dolphins as they leaped over the churning waves. The creatures that lived above the surface interested her, so she made it her duty to protect those who ventured upon the unforgiving sea. When the pirates had once blew up a merchant's vessel, she had spent late into the night, caring and saving the creatures from near death.
One morning she was dancing through the waves with her dolphin friend, Splash, who was well known for the resounding white spot that protruded from his dorsal fin; when a large pirate's ship loomed over her. By the wild hooting and hollering, it was clear that the creatures had seen her. She dived for the fathomless depths of the ocean, swishing her mermaid tail wildly until she was safe upon the ocean floor. She huffed in a great swallow of salty water and sighed to herself. "One day your going to get yourself in hot water girl." Aquata said to herself, but she couldn't help giggling at the excitement she had felt at seeing an actual person up close. She wondered how they lived out of the water, how they swam, and how they communicated. Splash nuzzled her thoughtfully, and squealed in sympathy. Aquata gazed up at the underside of the great ship and watched it slowly disappear amidst the waves. She swam after it, slipping through the sliding waves. Throughout the day she followed it, watching it's inhabitants as they zipped about the deck like they were being chased by hungry sharks.
Aquata was amazed at their speed and grace as they went about their labor, they looked like tiny dancers involved in a strenuous dance. Aquata loved watching them atop the oceans waves. It was almost as if they were magical beings that danced the tops of the sea but never ventured below her magnificence. She watched as the large ship crawled faster against the pounding waves, putting much distance between her and it. She gazed upon the surreal portrait they made. A mighty ship of endless white sails, set up against the backdrop of a molten red sky that stretched into a deep purple nothingness. Aquata swam up to a group of rocks the jetted from the sea and wiggled her way atop them. In the distance she watched the ship as it continued to dance its way to the shore of a sandy beach. The inhabitants were more crazed then ever now, as they flied along the ships deck in every direction.
Aquata sighed to herself and gazed up into the darkening sky. Her mother and father would hook her if she didn't get back in time for bed. She dived back into the water and washed the hair from her face as she swam as fast as she could back home.
The water was taking on a chilly blackness when she swam up to the home of King Briny and Queen Waverial. She dove through the entrance and into the living room where her father sat upon an intricately woven seaweed cushion. Aquata swam up to him and gave him a big kiss on the cheek before heading into her room, the King smiling after her. She grabbed a sea sponge off her dresser and washed her face, smiling to herself in the mirror. Climbing into her kelp bed she gazed out the hole in her ceiling, the waves were dancing again this evening. She closed her eyes and focused on the current brushing against her face until she fell asleep.
The sun shone through the water into the hole in her ceiling and warmed Aquata's face. She opened her eyes and gaze up into the waves above. "Sure is a lovely morning." She said to herself, small bubbles floating around each word. Running a coral comb through her hair she swam outside to adventure some more. She sped as fast as she could up to the surface, and with a leap she jumped into the sky and back into the waves. She peeked back out of the waves into the distance where a young merman was also jumping in the waves wake. She giggled lightly to herself and made her way over to him. She stopped a little ways away from him and watched him as he swam hypnotically around the ocean surface. He had dark black hair and golden eyes that danced playfully as he swam. He looked so roguishly handsome that Aquata couldn't help but want to meet him. Gulping back a steady stream of salt water, she got her courage to go meet him. She waved her hand down her hair and watched him as she slowly approached, hoping her skin wasn't too water wrinkled. "Hello." Aquata said in a hushed tone. The merman stopped suddenly and glanced at her blankly. She was scared to the spine that he was angry at her for interrupting his wave dance, but instead was rewarded with a roguish smile. "Ello Lass." He greeted with a wink.
Aquata was having a hard time not turning bright red at this juncture and so she just smiled at him. "Lovely dance you were doing. I'm Aquata, who are you?"
"Nice to meet you fair Aquata, I'm Morray." He flipped his tail thoughtfully as he continued to invade her senses with his roguish smile. Aquata couldn't help but think he was utterly handsome, even more so then from where she had watched him. His hair looked so unbelievably soft swaying in the current like it was. Aquata was suddenly dumbstruck and couldn't find anything interesting to say.
"Well, Morray, I best get back to my adventure. I was going to go locate the big ship that I saw here yesterday." Aquata gulped.
Morray just nodded at her, "I'll come with you if that'd be okay Lass." Morray gave her a smirk. She just smiled at him with a feminine nod and started swimming towards the direction she had followed the large ship. Morray followed closely behind her, and for some reason she found herself doing stunts as she swam, as if she was trying to impress someone. She tried not to think of that deathly handsome merman swimming behind her, so instead she focused on the task at hand. She had to figure out where the large billowing ship had gone.
Following the course she had gone before she soon came to the rocks jetting from the cove. There on the shore was the ship that had docked the night before. It was still as beautiful as it had ever been, the light shone through the sails as if they were clouds. "Isn't it marvelous?" Aquata breathed.
"It's breath taking," Morray gawked. "I've never seen a ship so close before."
Aquata nodded and leaned to get a better look. "It's so magical." She said in a fit of embarrassment. The ship bounced against the shore in the waves, swaying and dancing as the wake plowed into it.
Aquata lept off the rocks and into the sea, her tail splashing around her as she swam towards the shore. "Aquata!" Morray called after her as he chased to keep up. Aquata got as close to the ship as she possibly could, but just in case, she hide behind an outcropping of sea lily's. Morray picked one of the sea lilies and placed it into Aquata's hair, and smiled at her. "Almost as pretty as you."
Aquata couldn't help but blush her heart out. Such a handsome face Morray had, so kind and mischievous all at once. She turned her attention back to the ship and watched it. They both were so taken by the majestic ship that time quickly passed, and it was soon very late. Upon realizing how late it truly was, Aquata got very upset. Her dear mother and father would be so worried. Morray offered that they could stay in a cave that he had once explored until the morning. It was much to late to be out, this was the hour of the shark. The sharks would just be emerging, hungry and menacing, to find themselves dinner. Aquata didn't like the idea of not going home that night, but she had to agree that it was much to dangerous to venture home. Besides, she didn't want to leave Morray, he had connected so completely with her today. With common interests and a kind touch, she had lost her heart to him. His handsome eyes caught her the moment she looked into them.
The two quickly swam to the abandoned oceanic cave and rested inside it. The moonlight was sifted through the water in the cave and made the walls dance as if controlled by magical entities. The atmosphere was gorgeous and majestic, it was almost like being in a world within a world. They were alone together and nothing could touch them.
Morray took Aquata's hand in his and smiled at her with his eyes. His eyes were so handsome and kind that she quickly lost herself in them, only to be returned to reality when he kissed her. The kiss was magic within itself, a mixture of heat and pleasure in one. His lips were so soft and gentle on hers, they feathered nourishment over her hungry lips. She was locked in a world of love, and Morray was her sun. He lead her through the darkening night. She couldn't care less how lost she became, as long as Morray was there to lead her in the direction of light. They snuggled and lay close that night, adoring each other with gentle kisses and soft caresses. Soon they drifted asleep to the sweet adoring song of love.
Morning seemed like it took forever to come, and when it did, the two lovers hated it. Morning meant they'd have to return home, and they wanted to be no where but within each other's arms. They smiled forlornly at each other. "I don't want to leave you Morray, I love you." Aquata sighed. "I want to spend an eternity within your arms."
"You will my little one, you will." Morray smiled at her with his eyes. "But first we must go back home. We must not allow our parents to worry to much." He touched her cheeks softly and brushed one last kiss over her sweet lips. "I love you Aquata."
Aquata was filled with unbelievable warmth. Morray was her destiny, and she loved him as much as he loved her. Her mind sang over the possibility of marriage and a house of their own, and then she'd never have to be alone again. She could share forever with him, and live in a world of love and devotion.
Aquata touched his chest again. "I love you, and I'll meet you here again this evening." She smiled and waved at him, hating to have to leave. He said good-bye to her using only his joyous eyes, and then she was gone. She flitted home in a river of love, her heart screamed to dance and her mind sang songs of devotion.
She danced through the door to her home, and sang happily as she hugged her mother and father. Who both exchanged looks with a quick fit of giggles. "Our young girl is in love it seems." They both chatted as she swam into her room.
At evening meal, she ate quickly and gulped down her food. "Careful now dear, take smaller bites your going to choke." Her mother scolded.
"Sorry mother, I just can't wait to see Morray again." Aquata giggled to herself. His smiling face was still locked in her mind and she could barely take being away from him.
Her mother and father just exchanged looks and giggled. "We love you Aquata, you be careful out there, and be home before to late." Her father said.
"Beware of sharks!" Her mother called after her after she'd finished her meal and given them both a hug and a kiss, but Aquata was already out the entrance and on her way to the cave.
She soon got tired at the strenuous pace she had first attempted. She wanted to get to the caves as soon as possible, but she found she couldn't all out fly the entire way. She soon came to the cave that loomed from close to the shore. She stopped short to see if she could see Morray from where she was. Finding that she couldn't see anything, she quickly swam inside. "Darling here I..." she started, then stopped abruptly when she saw him laying battered on the floor of the cave.
"Morray! What happened? Are you okay?" She bolted to his side.
Morray quickly grabbed her wrists, proving that his injuries were all faked. "Hello Aquata I have someone I'd like you to meet. This is Sharkqua." Morray smirked.
"Huh?" She cocked her head in wonder.
"What a surprise, a princess come to visit." A sinister woman's voice shot. "Morray, you didn't tell me we had royal company."
Aquata glared at her. "You leave us alone!" She screamed.
"Feisty aren't you?" Sharkqua said. "You best mind your tongue deary. I have been known to turn fish into rocks."
"You don't scare me!" Aquata growled at her.
"What a pity. So this is your lover girl is it, Morray? What a devil you are." Sharkqua teased. "I do have to say you did an excellent job. Though you were suppose to get the youngest. We just wanted to hold her ransom and get our fair share of sea dollars. I'll have to fix your error I guess. Go back and try again. As for you..." Sharkqua glared menacingly at Aquata and pointed her crooked finger right at her. "Say good-bye to Morray." Sharkqua gloated.
Aquata was heart broken, the man she thought she loved was a traitor! She'd never forgive him, but would she ever forget him? Aquata screamed through tear-filled eyes. "How could you!" She spat.
"Oh bother, so he never loved you, you were hurt deeply. Your heart is broken.. Tell it to someone who cares! Now you'll be all alone to suffer your anguish." She gestured at Aquata and cackled. "Enjoy your life as a human my dear. We can't have you running and telling daddy!"
Aquata groaned loudly as her body shook with spasms. She held tightly to her transformed love through all the pain. Her tail was gone and was now replaced by two dangly peach things. She was human, and she was mortal, but most of all, she would now be alone. She gulped in a heave of sadness and was rewarded with nothing but a flood of salty water that sunk into her lungs. She couldn't breath! She swam towards the light as quickly as she could using her new awkward legs. She broke the surface in a fit of gasps and pants. Air, sweet air. She had never known it before, and yet, it was a bittersweet prize. Because with it, she lost her life, and was shoved into a life in which she didn't belong. Naked and cold she waded up onto the shore and gazed back at the sea in which she belonged. Alone, she knew nothing about the world she was being forced to enter, and she knew nothing of how to go back to the world in which she should be a part of. She wobbled up the shore, the sand feeling new between her toes as it stuck to her wet feet. Far from the waves she collapsed in a fit of sobs for her life lost. She had lost so much today. She lost her love, her family, her life, and her dreams. She was alone, and the music was gone. The joyful song of the ocean no longer played in her ear.
Aquata wrapped her arms tightly around herself and continplated her plite. A sense of forbourding took over her as she considered that she would probably never again see the faces of the ones she loved. Never again would the waves dance above her and never again would she happily leap through the waves. She climbed to her feet carefully and slowly waded into the murky blue cove and gazed out into the endless sea. A tear ran down her face as she reminisced on her life lost. Her fingers touched a small silver seashell as she reminisced about the man she had loved and how he had betrayed her. The waves no longer danced and sang to her. They were dead and foreign as they beat out a rhythm that she didn't understand. She collapsed onto the wet sand her skirts collecting the damp gritty sand. The mockings eyes of her fake love, Morray flashed before her as she came to grips that it had all been a trick, that he never had any feelings for her and she'd given him her heart, but she'd never see him again; would never see the kind eyes of her mother or father as they gazed lovely upon her. In the distance a blue dolphin with a white spot on his dorsal fin jumped into the air as if calling a silent good-bye to her. To his friend who was lost and would never be found. As she watched Splash, her dear dolphin friend. She realized that she was a princess locked in a world that was not hers to own for the rest of eternity, and she was most of all...... alone.
Aquata was unsure what she should do. She was naked and alone in a world she knew nothing about. Where was she to go? Where would she sleep? These and many other questions jumbled in her mind. She glanced around her for something to cover her body with, but was unable to locate anything useful on the beach. It was then she noticed a small house not far off. She watched as the wind caught the sheer fabric of a shirt that was hanging on the clothes line outside the house. She decided then that she would solve her most immediate problem first. She wobbled her way along the beach towards the house. It was bleached an off white from a mix of the salty sea air and the bright sun. As she neared the house she noticed that the painted outside trim was peeling badly and the wood decking was splitting. She glanced about herself stealthily before grabbing one of the white shirts from the clothes line. She worked it over her head and pulled it over her body, and was happy to realize it fell down to right above her knees. She pulled her hair out from the neck of the shirt and looked up in time to see a secretly amused man standing in the doorway of the tiny house. Aquata could feel her cheeks turning a brilliant red as she stood there in mute silence, staring at the man who was smiling so knowingly at her. The man was fairly tall, at least a few inches tall then herself. His eyes were a intense brown that was mixed with gold. His hair was so dark that it could easily be mistaken for black, but under the bright light of the sun, Aquata could see it was actually a very dark brown. His white shirt lay open at the neck and formed against his musclar body to be tucked in at his pants. His eyes twinkled with his amusement as he slowly made his way towards her, coming to stop right before her, almost too close for her own comfort.
"Do you always wander about stealing mens clothing?" His deep voice had an obvious hint of teasing in it, hitting a nerve in Aquata that pushed all the wrong buttons.
"No.. I was unaware these shirts here were a mans, they being so small and all." She muttered, which was an utter lie. The evidence of her fib being that his shirt was very big on her, hanging to her knees. She knew he probably had recognized her little fib when his lips curved into a knowing smile. This in turn made her frown disagreeably. She hated being teased, she really despised it. She started to turn away from him to leave, but his hand came out to catch her by the wrist, stopping her in her tracks. His hand touching the soft flesh of her wrist felt strange to her. She'd never been touched by a human before, and it was amazingly disturbing. It sent a warmth up her arm, seeming to be in a straight line for her heart. Her blue eyes came up definately to meet his which still showed the amusement he must have been feeling.
"I must ask you to please remove my shirt before you leave." This statement brought a different kind of smile to his face. One she'd seen before from Morray, but this one gave her a different feeling entirely. This one felt her with an excitement she'd never felt before. This smile made her think crazy thoughts. This man had already made her feel many different feelings she had never felt before. It hit her then what he had said. Her mouth turned into an angry grimace.
"I will not be undressing for you sir!" Aquata spat. "Perhaps you'd allow me to give you something in exchange?" She knew she should not have said what she just had by just the look in his eyes after she had finished. "I haven't got much, but I'd be willing to pay you back in some way."
"What could you possibily offer me that would convience me to give you my favorite shirt?" He asked.
A farse obviously, she thought, he only wanted her to think the shirt she had on was his favorite so he could make her pay more then it was worth. "If this one is your favorite, kindly tell me which one I could take for a small sum." she said.
"Well, I suppose I could dare to part with the one you are wearing, but the price will still be high. Are you willing to pay my high price?" He said, another of those exciting smiles touching his lips.
"How much are you expecting me to pay? I could give you two sea dollars and a hermit crab shell. That is a high price if you ask me." Aquata offered.
He stared at her silently. "Why would I want a bunch of shells? If you intend to pay me with shells then the deal is off, or maybe we could think of something else you'd be willing to give?" The man offered in return.
So shells were not a source of payment in this world above the sea huh? What was she to do, in this world she had nothing of value. "I'll get some of the form of currency you use and then I will pay you for the shirt. You must give me time to pay you though."
"How do I know I can trust you?" He said, "I don't even know you. You could be some visious clothing thrifter that goes about making deals to pay for the clothes she steals but instead bats her eyes and pouts her lips to get out of it. Besides, I don't even know your name."
Her cheeks burned with heat and she knew she must be turning absolutely purple. "My name is Aquata, and I would make good on my promise. I am not a thrifter."
The man shrugged. "I don't know that. Tell you what, since I'm such a trusting man I'll let you take the shirt. You can pay me whatever you think it is worth. Just tell me where you are staying and I'll come visit you for payment in a week. Whaddya say?" The man smiled kindly.
"I say no deal. I can't tell you where I am staying, as I haven't found out for myself yet." Aquata explained. "I do not have a way of making the money right now, but I promise to find one. Thank you for being so kind though..." Aquata searched for his name, had he told her already? She couldn't remember if he had.
"Cole." He supplied. He looked her face over carefully, trying to judge if she had been lieing to him. He really didn't need the shirt, nor care that she was taking it. He was just having a little fun with her. He wasn't sure if he'd even care if she paid him for the shirt, though the promise of seeing her again sometime was appealing. She looked as if she'd just crawled out of the sea, her hair was still damp and looked as if it needed a good brushing. She stood there in his sheer white shirt and that appealed to him as well in a much different way. He couldn't understand how this beautiful little mystery could have caught his interest so intensely. She wobbled about as she moved as if she'd never before used her legs, and she had no residence, no currency? Where was she from? He looked into her eyes again, looking for answers to the questions swirling in his head. Her eyes were so intense, he got lost in them, quickly forgetting everything he had been wondering about. They were such a unique color of blue, it reminded him of the ocean, but he was not sure why. The poor thing, she was a homeless. "You can stay here if you'd like. That way I will know where you are, and will be close by when you have collected the payment." Cole offered.
Aquata was mixed. Her father would be deeply bothered knowing she was considering staying with a man in his home. It struck her then that her father would never get the chance to be bothered, as she would never see him again. She blinked back the tears and gave a mute nod. "Thank you."
Cole looked Aquata over again, wondering how smart it had been to invite a woman to stay with him. It was quite small in this dump of a beach house. He motioned for her to follow him into the house as he turned around. He wondered if she'd be with him long enough that she'd have to travel with him to his usually residence. He had come to the small ocean community of Bayside to visit his brother and his brother's wife. They had just had their first child and he was summoned to come meet his little neice. He thought about Graystone Manor he place he called home, and wondered quietly if Aquata would like it there. It was to the North of Bayside and sat not far off the shoreline. Cole focused on Aquata again, who was eyeing a small wicker chair in the corner with disgust. He wondered how she could find distaste in such a broken down old shack when she herself didn't have anywhere to live. She must have come from the wealthy side of the tracks and had at one point, lost everything.
Aquata glanced around the dim little room, trying not to look too disappointed. The house was smaller then it looked from the outside, but she supposed it was a place to stay, and right now that was what she needed.