Wednesday, 30 April 2014

The Last Mermaid

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The Last Mermaid
by Rebecca Fyfe
I was never lonely, despite being the last of my kind. I had the dolphins, the whales, the octopuses, the seals and the sea lions to keep me company. I often took turns spending months at a time with different colonies or pods.

I never even wondered about my lone existence until the day the seahorse asked me about the others.  He asked me why I had never gone looking for them. I couldn't answer him then, but I realized, when I had time to think about it, that, as I had no memory of the others, I had just grown up believing that I'd always been the only one of my kind. It had never occurred to me that there might be others like me.

The sea horse told me that he'd heard stories, stories about the Sea Witch imprisoning all of merkind with a spell many years ago.

I asked him where I could find the Sea Witch and he told me she lived in the deepest, darkest part of the ocean, in an underwater cave in the center of a maze of tunnels.

"No one who enters the Sea Witch's caves ever comes out again," he warned.

I shrugged off his warning. The idea that there might be others like me filled me with too much excitement to let the idea go without doing something to find them.

And that is how I found myself lost in a tunnel leading to a cave in the deepest, darkest part of the sea. I couldn't see much, even though I had brought some crystal jellyfish in a sack. Every now and then I would release one so that the glow from it could light my way. I got lost in the maze of tunnels, but when I was almost out of crystal jellies and starting to feel like it was a lost cause, I finally found the center of the Sea Witch's cave.

The Sea Witch was there. She almost looked like one of us, except that, where my scales were colorful and reflected light and sparkle, her scales were black and dull. Where my skin was smooth and naturally sun-kissed from my time near the surface, hers was as pale as a corpse. Where my eyes were vivid and a bright green, hers were so black from edge to edge. Where my hair was long and carried a variety of shades form copper to gold to brown, hers was short, grey and dull. It had no shine. She looked like a dead thing, pretending to be of merkind.

The Sea Witch turned to me, "A mermaid. I thought I'd imprisoned all of you. It seems I missed one."

"Why did you imprison the others?" I asked, keeping my distance from her.

"Oh, they were always meddling and getting in my way. They tried to keep me from my magic, kept complaining that it was evil, that I shouldn't harm others. I got tired of always having to answer to them, so I got made sure they couldn't complain anymore."

"Where are they?" I asked. I couldn't help thinking that if she could imprison all of the mermaids at one time, then she might just as easily rid herself of me.

"I'll tell you what, little mermaid; since you are the last, I will release the others if you can figure out where they are in this room."

I looked around the room. There was a lot of junk in the room; it was as if the Sea Witch liked collecting a variety of different things, none of it which seemed to go together. There were jars of ointments, all stoppered up to keep the sea water out of them, and different kinds of sea weed growing in oddly shaped wood containers. The wood looked like it was made from driftwood. There were baubles and trinkets of all kinds.

One necklace, in particular, drew my attention. It looked like glass with the color and texture of sea foam. I remembered someone's voice telling me a story, so long ago I couldn't remember a face to go with the voice. The story had said that all mermaids were created out of sea foam.

Was that what she had done? Turned the others all back into sea foam and trapped them in the glass of the necklace? Nothing else in the room triggered any hidden memories for me, and I had no way of being certain, but I had to try.

"Is it this necklace?" I asked, lifting the necklace to show her.

"No, how could you? You couldn't have figured it out!" The sea witch flew into a rage. The nails on her fingers grew into claws and she swam at me at full speed, reaching out to carve me with her claws. I grabbed the closest thing to me, which turned out to be a piece of stone broken off from a statue of some sort. As she threw herself at me, I jammed the sharpened shard of stone into her chest. Her claws rakes at my shoulder, piercing the skin. I cried out in pain, but the Sea Witch had stopped moving. I pulled the stone out from her chest and she slumped to, floating aimlessly in the water, blood spreading through the water around her.

She was dead, but the other mermaids were still not free. I didn't know what else to do, so I decided to put the necklace on and find some other sea creatures to ask if they knew what I could do to free the mermaids. As soon as the necklace touched my skin, it began to glow. The glass melted away from it and the sea foam drifted up into the water. Before a question could form in my mind, the different parts of the sea foam began to change shape and hundreds of merpeople stood before me, so many that their numbers were spread out into the tunnels.

I was no longer the last mermaid.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

A Mermaid's Treasure

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A Mermaid's Treasure
by Rebecca Fyfe

Sandy loved exploring those old, sunken ships. She swished her tail, giving herself a burst of speed that pushed her through the water to the stern of the ship. She couldn't help wondering what it would have been like to have been a sailor and sailed over the water on a ship that cut through the waves, to feel the wind on her face. As a mermaid, she had no choice but to live in the sea. She could breathe out of water, but her fins and the scales of her tail would dry out if she didn't keep them immersed in sea water. She might be okay for a little while out of water, but not for long.

Sandy had done enough imagining; it always made her sad to think of what she couldn't do. She loved adventures and to spend time on land, to her, sounded like the greatest adventure of all. She swam below the deck on the ship to do some more exploring. After looking through some of the rooms in the lower decks, she became a little depressed. Many had died on this ship, their bones the only testament to the fact that not many had escaped a watery death when this ship had gone down.

The signs of death did not keep her from her explorations, and she soon found herself up on the first class level of the ship. She knew about these things because she had seen the difference between the two, from bare rooms with thin mattresses to lavish furnishing in abundantly sized rooms, it was obvious that some people were treated better than others on these ships than others.

In one of the first class rooms, Sandy found a funny metal box. It was medium sized and had a lock on the outside holding it closed, but the lock was rusted through. Sandy pulled the lock off the metal box. A combination of the rust and her mermaid strength made it an easy task.

Inside, she found a beautiful purple and blue bracelet. The beads were slightly transparent and sparked in the water. She slipped it on her wrist and immediately felt the magic it contained spread through her body. As soon as the magic spread through her, like a warm blanket being spread over her, she felt an urgent need to rise to the surface and swim towards the nearest shore.

Once at the shore, she kept swimming until she was laying on the beach with only the gentle waves lapping against her fluke. She still felt the magic and as a new surge of it spread through her, it was as if it washed away her scales and tail and turned them into legs. She had a human body. She knew instinctively that it was not a permanent change; once she took the magic bracelet off, she'd be a mermaid again.

Sandy looked back at the ocean. It called to her; it was where she belonged.

But adventures awaited her. She stood on shaky legs and walked away from the sea and towards the adventures she had always dreamed of having.

Monday, 28 April 2014

The Mermaids of Atlantis

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The Mermaids of Atlantis
by Rebecca Fyfe
Atlantis was once a prosperous city in ancient times, one known far and wide for its culture and art. It wasn't until the city was attacked that Atlantis disappeared from human eyes forever, hidden deep under the sea.

The attack came by men form over the sea. They came by ship and murdered and pillaged until the city's population had fallen from thousands to not even one hundred people. Most of the men were killed, though a few remained alive. The majority of those who survived were women and children, but the murderous barbarians who came from across the sea had no intentions of letting any of them live free.

Before they could be taken as slaves, the women, as one, all fell to their knees and prayed to Poseidon to save them Poseidon was the god worshipped in Atlantis, and the women of Atlantis had always been his most faithful followers.

As they prayed, a great wave surged forward and swallowed up Atlantis. No one could escape the rushing waters and those who tried to pillage the city were swept away to drown at sea.

But the women who had stead-fastly remained faithful to their god Poseidon did not drown when the waters closed over them. Instead, they were given the tails of fish and the ability to breathe under the sea. The few men left and the children of Atlantis were also given these gifts.

To this day, the people of Atlantis still live in their city, ruling a new, underwater civilization. Their children and their children's children have repopulated the great city and, due to their new found longevity, for every mermaid of Atlantis lived for thousands of years, they have a rich oral history which they pass down to their offspring so that every child knows who to thank for their fortunate existence.

Atlantis is still a land of art and culture, music and storytelling, but no human has ever been able to find Atlantis for themselves.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

The Little Mermaid's Power

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The Little Mermaid's Power
by Rebecca Fyfe

Ariel hated living with the humans. She had been such a fool, thinking she wanted to be one of them. She'd even imagined herself in love with one of them. Foolish, foolish girl!

Humans were not at all as she had imagined. Prince Eric had been fickle, deserting her for another woman. And these humans, she'd watched them; they did horrible things like throwing their trash into the ocean and eating fish that she could have called friends. They even ate lobsters!

They were awful creatures, killing everything around them and poisoning all of nature and the sea. She abhorred these humans now.

But she still thought her dad was wrong to keep them all hidden from humans. No, she and the other mermaids all had the power to stop the humans. Why couldn't he see that?

She sat in the room Prince Eric had given her, looking in the mirror on her dresser, and smiled to herself. It didn't matter that her father, Kind Triton, didn't agree with her. The Sea Witch agreed. And the Sea Witch had given Ariel back her voice. Now Ariel could enchant the humans and make them do her bidding.

She'd start with having the ones in this palace kill each other.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

The Sea Nymph

Manatee at Sea World, Orlando, picture from Wikipedia
The Sea Nymph
by Rebecca Fyfe
Pearl slipped past the manatee and swam through a school of colorful fish. She often left her ocean home to patrol the waterways and rivers leading from it. It was her job as a sea nymph. More and more humans kept moving closer to the water, building their homes at the banks and letting their waste and garbage clog up the natural environment.

The worst they brought were the vehicles that raced through the water, maiming and killing her beloved sea cows and filling the water with a poison the humans called oil. She cleaned what she could, but there was too much these days and she couldn't clean it all. Even her sisters were finding that the poisons and dangers brought by humans were too much for them to handle on the waterways and rivers which they tended.

Today, she came with a specific purpose. Word had reached her of a manatee that had been badly cut by the propeller of one of those evil machines that humans used to travel on the water. This particular manatee had recently given birth and still had her young one to tend. Pearl hoped what she found was something that she could heal.

When she spotted the rust colored water, she knew she'd found the blood spilled by the manatee. By the amount of blood, she knew that she was not going to be able to save this gentle creature, even before she spotted the manatee herself.

The gash along the manatee's belly was large and deep. Some of the internal organs of the creature were visible through the large wound's opening. The gentle soul was already struggling to breath. There was nothing Pearl could do for her.

The new born calf snuggled close to its mother's side. Small, sorrowful sounds came from the little one. Pearl's heart felt heavy with sorrow. She sang to the calf, calling it to her, letting her magical voice calm the little one. She would take this one and care for it until it was old enough to venture out into the waterways on its own. It was all she could do.

Friday, 25 April 2014

How the Mermaid Got Her Tail

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How the Mermaid Got her Tail
by Rebecca Fyfe

Regina splashed in the tide pool beside the ocean. Her mommy was up higher along the rocks, carrying a basket full of clams which she had searched for and found. Her mommy had explained the reason for the clams to Regina before. The clams would sell in the village, and then they would have money for supplies and food. Ever since daddy had died, mommy had started working: finding clams on the shore and mending clothes for money.

Regina watched her mommy. Her mommy wobbled for a moment and then disappeared from view as she slipped and fell into the ocean. Regina heard the splash, and scrambled up the rocks to find her mommy.

There was no sign of her though. The basket of clams was still on the rocks, tipped over with the clams spilling out beside it.

"Mommy!" Regina called. "Mommy!" She looked over the side, but it looked so far down to the water that she became frightened. She got onto her hand and knees and, turning backwards, crawled down the rocks slowly, finding flat rocks she could put her feet or hands on along the way.

The water was directly beneath her, but she couldn't let go of her last hand hold and enter the water because Regina was only six and had never been taught to swim. She reminded herself that her mommy was in the water. Mommy wouldn't let her drown.

Just as she was about to let go, she noticed something sparkling in the water beneath her. A fish that was almost as large as she was herself came to the surface of the water. Its scales shimmered as though reflecting every color in the rainbow. Then the fish did something Regina knew fish weren't supposed to do; it spoke to her.

"You are a funny looking fish," the fish said.

"I'm not a fish. I'm a girl."

"If you're a girl, then why are you trying to come into the water? Don't you know humans can't breathe under water?"

"My mommy fell in, and I need to find her."

Regina hadn't realized before that fish could make expressions with their faces, but this fish looked sad.

"Won't you drown before you can find her?" the fish asked.

"No. Mommy's in the water. She won't let me drown." Regina couldn't see her mommy anywhere, but she had heard her fall into the water, so she knew she was there somewhere.

"Well, if you insist on coming into the sea with me, let me help you. Can you reach down to me without letting go of the rocks?"

Regina nodded.

"Then, reach down to me and take one of my scales," the fish told her.

"Won't that hurt you?" Regina asked.

"Only for a moment, but it will help you."

So Regina did as the fish asked and took one of his scales from him. It sparkled and shimmered prettily in her hand.

"You can let go of the rocks and let yourself fall into the ocean now, but don't let go of the scale," the fish told her.

Regina let go and splashed into the water, the cold wet sea water swallowing her up.

The scale in her hand began to glow. She tried to keep holding onto it as the fish had told her, but it pulled away from her hands. It floated swiftly to one of her legs and then it began to multiply. Within moments, her lower body was covered in the beautiful glowing scales. Her legs merged, and a fluke formed at her feet and she realized she had the lower half of a fish. She wasn't holding her breath either. She was breathing easily under the water.

The fish swam past her, missing one scale.

"Thank you," she thought to the fish.

"You're welcome," he thought back to her.

Regina smiled and swam off to search for her mother.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

The Merman in my Bathtub

The Merman in my Bathtub
by Rebecca Fyfe

The day at the beach had been wonderful. My children were all worn out from time spent in the sun and digging in the sand. I packed up our things while the kids put their clothes back on over their swimsuits. The children were still holding the buckets and spades they had used to build sand castles.

The drive home wasn't long, but all three children drifted off to sleep before we arrived home anyway. I carried my two year old son Caleb into the house and put him into bed, and then did the same for my four year old daughter Rose. Six year old Jenny was too heavy for me, so I woke her just enough to steer her up to her bed and then started unpacking the car. Sometimes being a single mother meant I had a lot of work to do all on my own, but, for the love my children gave me, it was all, worth it.

The last things I brought out of the car were the buckets the children had played with. To my surprise, one of them was still full of sea water. The water was muddy-looking and a strand of seaweed was bundled into the water too. I was about to dump the water out when I noticed something moving. I looked closer and realized that a crayfish the size of my hand was hiding behind the seaweed.

Instead of dumping the bucket out on my front lawn, I took the bucket, water, sand, seaweed and all, and brought it inside the house. I didn't own a fish tank, so I put the plug in the bathtub and dumped the bucket out, gently, into the tub.

The crayfish didn't hide once it was out in the open, but just sat staring at me. I felt badly for the poor thing. Had I known my children had scooped him up, I would have freed him back at the beach. I didn't know the first thing about caring for a crayfish, and I hoped he would survive the night so I could take him back in the morning. He didn't seem to have enough water, so I added a bit more cold water from the tap in the bathtub and then added some sea salt form the sink. I assumed he needed salt water since he was found at the shore, but I really had no clue what I was doing.

In the morning, when I went to check on the crayfish, I found a man sleeping in my bathtub, only he wasn't just a man. He was half-man and half-fish. His scaly tail was a shimmery blue and green. I knew I must be seeing things because mermaids didn't exist. And if mermaids didn't exist, then neither did mermen. My gasp upon seeing him was enough to wake him from his sleep.

When he first opened his eyes, he jerked as if startled, and stared at me as if he, too, couldn't believe what he was seeing.

"Who are you? What are you?" I asked, keeping my voice quiet so I wouldn't wake the children. "How did you get in my house?"

"You can see me? I mean, as I am? I'm not a shellfish any more?"

"What? No. I mean, yes. I mean, yes, I can see you and no, you're not a shellfish. You're a - you're a - well, you're a mermaid." Did he just imply that he was the crayfish I had found last night?

"I am no maid." He scowled at me. Then he looked around the small bathroom. "This is amazing. Where am I? How did you break my curse? You must be very magical."

"Um, no." I didn't know what to think of this conversation. "I'm not magical. I found you in my children's things last night. I was going to take you back to the ocean today, but you aren't a crayfish any more. Um, how am I supposed to get you back to the beach now? I mean, it's not like I can drive you around looking like that." I indicated his massive tail.

"Oh, this? I can take care of it." He tail immediately started to glow and his tail changed into legs right before my eyes. That's right about the time I realized that he wasn't wearing anything. I averted my eyes.

"Um, you don't seem to be wearing any clothes. I grabbed a towel from a rack beside me and blindly threw it over my shoulder towards him. "Could you please cover up with this? I'll go get you something you can wear."

I raced down the hall to my bedroom and dug through my closet. I knew I still had some clothing items my ex-husband had left here. I'd been without him for years, but I'd never gotten around to cleaning out my closet. He was smaller than the merman in my bathtub, but my ex usually wore his clothes loose and baggy, so they might be usable.

I hurried back to the bathroom and entered without knocking. The merman was standing just outside the bathtub with a towel wrapped around his hips. He was tan and well-muscled. I remembered seeing him naked just moments before and blushed.

"Here are some clothes." I handed him the sweatpants and t-shirt I managed to scrounge out of my closet. "My name is Lucy, by the way." I turned my back so he could change.

"I'm Nerite," he said, "and however you did it, thank you for breaking the curse."

"What is this curse you keep speaking of? Is that why you were a crayfish when I first saw you?"

"I have been trapped in that from for hundreds of years. Aphrodite wanted me to join her on Mount Olympus and be her lover. When I refused, she cursed me into the form of a shellfish. I did not think I would ever be free, and then you came along. Now, here I am."

I felt my mouth drop open. Aphrodite? The goddess of love? "Why did you turn her down? I thought she was supposed to be very beautiful."

"She was beautiful, but vain. And I did not wish to leave the sea."

"Oh," I said. Before I could ask any more questions, I heard my children waking. "Nerite, it's nice to meet you, but I have to make my children their breakfast and get them ready for school. If you come into the kitchen, I'll make you some breakfast too. After the children have gone to school, I can drive you back to the shore, if you'd like."

He gave me a nod and a smile before following me to the kitchen. I'd always thought my kitchen was a good size, but that was before Nerite entered it. His enormous from seemed to dwarf everything around it. He must have been at least 6 1/2 feet tall, if not closer to 7'. His broad shoulders made him look even bigger. I didn't have time to think about it though, because as soon as my children laid their eyes on him, they were full of questions. They asked him his name, where he was from and how he knew me, to which he answered, "Nerite," "from far across the ocean," and "Your mother once did me a wonderful favor." They asked how long he was going to be staying, but I answered that he would be leaving right after they went to school.

The children loved it when anything new happened, and, as a result, his visit had left them practically bouncing in their seats with excitement. Driving them to school didn't take long, even though I had to keep glancing at each of the kids in my rear-view mirror to make sure they stayed buckled into their car seats. Caleb, being only two, was the only one still in preschool. He only went to preschool two mornings a week, and thankfully, this was one of those mornings.

Once all of the children were dropped off at school, I drove straight to the beach. Nerite stepped out of the car and we walked down to the sand where the water lapped at our feet. He took my hand as we walked. I didn't pull away. Holding hands with him felt natural.

"Thank you for breaking my curse and for bringing me back to the sea," Nerite said, turning to look at me.

I looked up at him. "I don't know what I did to break your curse, but you're welcome. I guess this is goodbye then."

Nerite smiled. "No, not goodbye. You broke a curse that had bound me for centuries. That means we have an unbreakable bond, you and I. We will see each other again." He raised his hands and cupped my face gently in them, leaning forward just enough to brush his lips across mine. Where his lips touched me, my lips tingled in response.

He stepped away and before I could think of anything to say, he ran deeper into the water and dove in. His body disappeared under the water and, after a brief glow, his fish tail followed him, slapping down and splashing little particles of water into the air.

I turned away and went back to my car, ready for the drive home.

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Tigerlily, the Rebel Muse

This story was originally written on April 30th, but it was the second story written that day and I neglected to add a story on the 23rd of April, so in keeping with my goal of writing one mermaid story per day in the month of April, I am post-dating this story to April 23rd.

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Tigerlily, the Rebel Muse
by Rebecca Fyfe

Tigerlily was a muse. She had the form of a mermaid and the coloring of a tiger. She lived in the ocean, but she had the magic of her voice to inspire people with. It was her job to sing to the right people. She didn't have to be near them, only to picture them in her mind when she sang. Her voice's magic would take care of the rest, delivering inspiration and ideas to musicians, artists and writers when needed.

If you look up the names of the muses, you won't find Tigerlily's name listed. That's because she never wanted to be a muse. She wanted to be a storyteller. When she sang her songs, she never knew what story or art or music would be delivered to her charges, only that they would find inspiration. Inspiration was sent to humans only, so none of the other muses, mermaids all, ever created anything. But that meant that, aside from her magical songs, Tigerlily never got to hear music, or read stories or even see a beautiful piece of art.

Tigerlily wanted to hear, read and see all of it, and she wanted to create her own. In her heart, stories burned, waiting to be written down, but how could a mermaid write anything? Paper wouldn't last underwater; the water would soak it through.

Tigerlily wasn't like the other muses though; inspiration often came to her. And, because of this, figuring out how to write her stories down was no problem for her. She found some bottles that had been used to litter the ocean and some cork, also litter just left floating in the ocean. She took the bottles and the cork and swam to one of the rocky outcroppings form the shore. She crawled up and hid the bottles and the cork away in the crevice between two rocks, somewhere where no one would find them and where the water wouldn't reach.

She knew where some old shipwrecks lay at the bottom of the sea and, using broken bits of seashells, she cut away the ropes holding the sails. She took the cloth of the sails and added them to her hiding spot in the rocks. A floating seagull feather was added next to her collection. She waited many days for all of her finds to dry out. Then she grabbed a squid as it swam by.

By squeezing the squid gently, some of the squids ink ejected into an empty shell she had brought with her. She used the seagull feather and dipped it into the ink and started writing her stories on the cloth from the sails.

For each story she wrote, she would sign her name, tear off the piece of cloth with the story and put it into one of the bottles. Then she would seal up the bottle using the corks. She made sure no water could get into the bottles, and then she set the bottles into the sea, hoping they would float to shore for humans to find and read.

Mermaid muses live for thousands of years. To this day, the rebel muse Tigerlily is writing her stories and then setting them free. Maybe you have read something by her.

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

The Mermaid Fountain

photo found at
The Mermaid Fountain
by Rebecca Fyfe
I carried my favorite tuna sub sandwich out of the café, deciding that sitting outdoors appealed more than spending my lunch break in a crowded cafeteria. The day was a little overcast, but it was warm enough and hopefully the rain would hold off long enough for me to enjoy my lunch.

I made my way to my favorite water fountain. It was in the middle of a public enclosure with entrances on either side. The stone walls surrounded an enchantingly lovely garden, full of a variety of flowers and plant life. The flowers drew butterflies, and the water fountain sat in the middle of the enclosure, a mermaid figuring pouring water from a large vase into the small surrounding pool of water. The sound of the water trickling was soothing, and between the butterflies flitting about the flowers and the koi fish in the fountain’s pond, there was plenty to look at while I sat and ate my sandwich.

I’d only eaten half my sandwich, savoring every bite, when I heard someone enter the garden. He had heavy steps, so it was hard to miss him. I looked up at the entrance to my right and the man had stopped. He was staring at me, a scowl on his face.

Something about his appearance frightened me, but I couldn’t pinpoint what it was. Was it his massive size, all solid muscle and about 6 ½ feet tall? Or was it the scar across his face, running from just under his left eye and down past his lip? Whatever it was, I couldn’t help picking up on an aura of menace that seemed to surround him.

He started moving purposely toward me, continuing to stare me right in the face, and I panicked. Before he was close enough to touch me, I stood and stepped over the edge of the fountain, entering the water.
“What do you want?” I asked, remaining tense.

“You must die.” He drew a long serrated knife from a sheath on his belt that I hadn’t noticed until now.
“What?” I didn’t have to fake my surprise. I had never seen this man before, and never had my life threatened before. I stepped back a few more steps, grabbing onto the mermaid statue in the middle of the fountain. Should I shout for help? Would anyone hear me?

The man lunged forward again, his knife about to strike at me, when something odd happened. I wavy sort of haze fell over everything. The fountain grew warm under my hand and the man seemed to be moving as if in slow motion. My hands began to tingle.

The water rose from around my feet and surrounded the man, burying him in a wall of water. Then the air cleared and everything sped back up to normal speed. The water fell from around them man, but he only stood still for a moment, making soft gurgling, choking noises and then he collapsed at me feet, face down in the pond. I tentatively reached out to touch him. When he didn’t move, I rolled him over, so his face was no longer in the water. It didn’t matter though, because he was dead.

I looked at the fountain. I hadn’t imagined what had happened. Had the fountain performed some sort of magic to save me or I had I somehow done that myself? Did it matter? I was alive.

Monday, 21 April 2014

My Mermaid Muse

My Mermaid Muse

by Rebecca Fyfe

I sat down to write but lately nothing came to me as I sat. My fingers tapped the keyboard absently. I almost had an idea of what to write, but it was useless. This was the worst bout of writer's block I had ever suffered through. Where was my muse when I needed her?

Closing my laptop, I made a decision; I was not going to spend today the same way I'd spent every day of the last two weeks, staring at a blank page on my computer screen until my eyes hurt with nothing to show for it.

The day was beautifully sunny and I was going to enjoy it. I dressed in shorts and a tank top, placing my floppy sunhat on my head at the last minute. It was sunny enough that, with my fairy skin, I'd be sunburned within minutes where I was going. The least I could do was shade my face with a hat. I hated wearing sunscreen because its oily feel and the scent always made me sneeze.

It only took me thirty minutes to drive to the beach. The plan was to go lay on the sandy beach and enjoy watching the sea before me. I loved everything about the beach, the sound of the waves as they tumbled to the shore, the salty smell from the ocean, the warmth of the sun on my skin and the cool breeze that counteracted it.

Once I walked down from my parking space to the beach, I realized that I didn't want to just lie on the beach. I wanted to go exploring for tide pools and climb up on the rocky outcropping to watch the waves crashing against the rocks. I was wearing flip-flops which weren't the best shoes for exploring along the rocks, but I knew I'd be careful. With one hand on my head to keep the breeze from blowing my sun hat away, and the other holding my flip-flops in my hand so I could walk barefoot, I picked my way up to the highest of the rocky outcroppings.

Up there, the breeze was stronger and the waves crashed so fiercely against the rocks below me that some of the water's spray reached up and splashed lightly against my skin. This felt like the perfect spot, so I found a rock that had a smooth enough surface to sit on, and I sat. I don't know how long I sat there watching the sea below. It could have been minutes or it could have been hours. I just know that the sea mesmerized me. A sea otter appeared every so often, floating on its back for a moment and then diving back under to come up somewhere else in the water.

That's when I saw her. Well, I didn't know what I was seeing at first. It was the tail of a massive fish, with gold, pink and green scales. I knew nothing like that existed, so I didn't believe what I was seeing at first, but then she came up for air and I realized, seeing the woman attached to the tail that I was seeing something even more incredible than a large fish.

When she dove under the water and didn't surface again, I knew she wouldn't be back. I drove home and sat down to write, full of new ideas, thanks to my mermaid muse.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Ealandra the Siren

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Ealandra the Siren
by Rebecca Fyfe

Captain Eric knew the dangers of the cove they were sailing near. Regardless, he had no choice but to set anchor in the cove. The ship had taken damage in the previous night's storm, and it was taking on water. They'd never make it to their destination if they didn't stop to make repairs.

It was a beautiful cove, lovely but deadly. The marine life in life the cove was plentiful, but he dared not allow any of his men to go out in the boats to fish, or even to explore the shore. If he let them leave the ship, they would die. They might die anyway.

The cove was deadly because she lived there, Ealandra. Ealandra had once been the most beautiful maiden in her village, or at least, that's what the stories told about her said. A young maiden of a mere sixteen years, she'd yet to marry. The story said that a young prince had seen her while his entourage had been passing through her village, and he'd immediately wanted her for his own.

Eleandra had refused him. Unable to accept the rejection, the prince had sought out a powerful sorcerer. He'd paid the sorcerer for a potion to make her fall want him. But all magic comes with a price, and the potion had done more than make want him. It had made her want all men, with a hunger that would never be sated.

The prince had snuck the potion into her drink, and she had instantly been transformed. Seeing the changes that had come across her, as she lay unconscious, her father had known that the only way to save her was to take her to the sea. He'd left her beside the shore, and never trusting the results of magic gone awry, he left her there. When the prince asked him where his daughter was, he told the prince where he would find her, but, suspecting who had been the cause of his daughter's curse, he told nothing else about her transformation.

Ealandra had awakened alone on the sands beside the sea and crawled into the water. Only in the water did she feel well again. It wasn't long after she awakened that the prince had arrived, searching for her, wanting to take advantage of the fair maiden's need for him which he knew would happen due to the potion he had given her.

When he saw Ealandra, he fell speechless. Her beauty had somehow grown even more profound with the effects of the potion; it was an alien loveliness though. Her eyes were large and black, slightly large for her face. Her fair hair had grown almost black but for the slight shades of violet threaded through it, and her skin was as pale as porcelain. Only after taking in her enchanting features did he notice the new tail she now sported instead of legs.

The tale was that of a giant fish or a beast of some sort, and it made him take a step back from her, feeling the first threads of fear. But then she started singing. Lightning shot through her and around her as she sang, and the song called to him.

The story was told that Ealandra's hunger for the prince was so intense that she feasted on his flesh and left nothing but his bones for the fishes.

And every time Captain Eric had to stop in this cove, Ealandra's chosen home, she sang one of his men, sometimes more, to his death. Captain Eric stuffed some cotton in his ears and started working on the repairs. His men knew the story too. If they were smart, they'd stuff their ears with cotton too. If they were fortunate, it would block out Eleandra's enchanting song.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Magic on the Sea

Magic on the Sea
by Rebecca Fyfe

Captain Jared sighed deeply as he looked out over the large expanse of ocean before him. It was good to be back at sea again. This last stop had taken far too long to secure new cargo, far too much time on land. He reminded himself that it was better to take his time and be safe than to rush the job and get caught with his illegal cargo.

He used to only transport legal cargo, but the new queen continually increased the taxes until he and many others could no longer afford to remain on the right side of the law. He'd still struggled and fought to stay true to his ethics and to honor.

But that all ended the day the queen came to his family's village. He'd been home for a visit, a well needed break from the sea. His true love was there, and he hated to go too long between visits. Emma was lovely and innocent. She had been begging him for years to take her with him on his voyages, but he knew the sea was too risky. He loved her too fiercely to risk her. They were to be wed during the new moon. It was only mere weeks away.

The queen had come to his village looking for him. She'd heard about his expert management of his ship and his crew and she wanted him to ship some cargo for her. The shipment would have taken him far out to sea when he was supposed to be marrying his sweet Emma. Foolishly, he'd refused the queen's request.

Emma disappeared that night. Some whispered that she'd run away, fearing a marriage to a man who would be away at sea more often than he was home. But Jared knew better. Emma would never run from him. She'd disappeared on the same night that the queen had made her request. He had heard the rumors of the queen's magic and dark sorcery. He knew she must have had a hand in his love's disappearance.

He fought her the only way he knew how, by smuggling precious cargo that thieves and outlaws stole from the queen. He always asked one thing of his customers: that they tell him if they hear any news or see anything that might show him how to save his lady love.

He knew exactly what had happened to her. He'd found out the very next time he'd set sail. He just didn't know how to save her from the curse the queen had laid on her.


At the soft sound of Emma's voice, Captain Jared looked down over the rail and gazed into his love's face where she swam in the water.

"Hello, my love," he said, using the same words he greeted her with every time they met at sea.

"The waters promise to be calm for this trip," she told him before swimming ahead and diving under, her long, scaly tail following her down.

He could see her and talk to her now, but he could never be with her. He watched her swim, a tear falling slowly down his cheek..

Friday, 18 April 2014

The Reaper and the Ocean's Lost Souls

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The Reaper and the Ocean's Lost Souls
by Rebecca Fyfe
People who die never expect to see me. They expect someone in a long, black cloak wielding a scythe, or maybe angels with a bright white light and feathered wings. But never me. It sometimes helps that the dead I come across are in the ocean. They still don't expect to see me.

I am where the legends came from, those old tales about sirens who lure men to their deaths or mermaids who sing songs of enchantment. It's true that I look like a mermaid, but I don't lure anyone to their deaths. They are already dead when I find them.

The problem with dying at sea is that your body gets swept away by the currents, sometimes half-eaten by sharks or other predators and sometimes tangled in seaweed deep under the surface. The sea can go down for miles, and for many of the dead, that means their bodies are never found.

I'm built the way I am, with gills on my neck to breathe underwater and a fish tail on my lower half, to help me find those lost corpses. Because, until a reaper can touch the body, the soul remains trapped forever within it. And then death really would be a true death.

There are reapers who don't look like me. Some of them  look like angels, some of them look like businessmen or businesswomen, some of them look like tribal medicine men, and some of them look like the traditional black hooded reaper, nothing but a skeleton inside. We are created to serve our duties in whatever fashion works best for the environment we collect the souls from. Some of us are created based on the most common belief in the region that they serve.

I'm just one of many here in the sea, but we all have scales, tails, gills and fins. I can sense the dead. Well, actually, I sense the souls that are trapped within the dead. And I find them, so that they don't have to be lost anymore. The human world might never find their bodies, but their souls will never be lost as long as we reapers are around.

So I guess that makes me both a mermaid and a reaper. I'm not really alive in the traditional sense, but that doesn't really matter since everyone I meet is dead too. I just touch them, maybe grab their hand, and their soul leaves their body. Then I can take them to the portal to their afterlife.

Once in a very long while, a soul we grab isn't dead yet and the body is found in time to revive it. In those instances, we take the soul back. The only thing the soul remembers, on the rare occasion that they remember anything, is seeing a mermaid. And that is what started the legends.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

A Mermaid Afterlife

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A Mermaid Afterlife
by Rebecca Fyfe

The boat went down so fast. I'd barely had time to put a life vest on and leave my room three floors down before the water came rushing in. I wasn't the only one who drowned that night, or the youngest.

There were hundreds of us on that ship. We'd all been asleep when the ship hit something. I still don't know what we hit, only that it was only a matter of minutes between the ship's movement suddenly jarring most of us awake and the water rushing in. A wall must have breached above our floor, because the water was coming in from above us, pouring down the stairs in a torrent that pulled many people's feet out from under them.

I struggled against the flow, mostly managing to remain upright while the icy water numbed my legs and tried to pull me in the opposite direction of the stairs. It didn't take long before there was too much water in the corridor for me to continue walking against it, so I started swimming. At first, the water swept me backwards, the current too strong for me to fight, but eventually, the corridor filled all the way. I was fully immersed in sea water and had no way of breathing, but that's when the current stilled enough for me to start swimming. I wanted to live.

It didn't matter though. The floor above ours was full of water too. I could see others, some just children, but none of them were moving; I was the only one still struggling. For some reason, I refused to believe that I was going to die, that I wouldn't be able to make it out of there. If only I could hold my breath forever.

Despite my struggles and my will to live, death took me anyway. There wasn't a cloaked figure in a scythe coming to take my soul or anything, but there weren't any angels glowing with holy light either. No, my vision just started to get darker and my head felt like it was going to explode. I desperately needed to take a breath and my body was screaming with pain from the need. Eventually, my body gave out, and death took me on a sigh as cold sea water filled my lungs. Everything went black.

They won't ever find my body though. When the rescuers come, there won't be anyone left to rescue, not even our blue and still corpses. It turns out, when you die in the sea, you get a completely different afterlife than the one you would get if you died anywhere else.

We were all given new bodies, ones that could breathe underwater. We had tails like, well, like mermaids, I guess. Yes, that's right. We get to live our lives as mermaids. I'm told that we will have lifespans that can go on for 1,000s of years. Then we'll get to come back as something else.

We have had to leave our families behind, except for the few who were lucky enough to have family on board with them at the time. As far as our families are concerned, we all died at sea. It's better that way anyway, because we could never survive on land anymore, even if it wouldn't really freak people out to find out we existed.

I'm happy down here. I didn't think I would be, not when I first saw the ones who came for us, all glittery scales and porcelain skin, with their long hair flowing out behind them. But the ocean has a way of welcoming everyone. I feel embraced by it. And there are so many others like us. It's like living out entirely new lives in a world that's completely alien to our first one and yet similar in a lot of ways too.

Yah, I'm happy.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014


This story was written on April 24th, 2014, but has been back-dated to the 16th of April when I did not write a story, so I can keep up with posting one story for each day in April.

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by Rebecca Fyfe

Baelen checked the map again. He looked up at the mottled tree with branches that looked like arms and hands reaching towards the sky and nobs in the trunk making it look like it had a face. Yes, this was the tree on the map. He was getting close. The stream should be near here.

He stumbled as he walked over ground that rose up slightly. He'd been out all day following the map, looking for its clues. He was getting tired, but he was so close now. As he reached the top of the rise, he could hear the sound of the water trickling over rocks somewhere close. He ran on staggering legs until he found himself falling face first near a small stream. This was it! He wearily dragged himself back to his feet and slowly made his way upstream, to the stream's source. As he walked, the trees and plants grew more lush and closer together. Eventually, when he felt as though he could go on no more, he found it, the source of the stream. A small lake spread before him, its water glinting a clear blue in the sun.

He sat and pulled a jewelled cup out of his backpack. It was time. He'd sacrificed everything for this. He'd left his wife and son when she'd made him choose between giving up his quest or them. He'd spent all of his money. He'd even lost what few friends he had. And now, all he had to do was say the incantation and fill his cup from the small pond, and he would finally have immortality.

He leaned forward, filling the cup and whispered the incantation. It was something in Latin. He'd memorized the Latin, but never bothered translating the entire text. He knew enough to know that it was the right incantation. He knew enough to have been able to follow the clues, find the map and then find this place.

When the final word left his mouth, the water in the lake began to bubble and froth. From right in front of him a blue lady rose from the water. She had scales that shimmered a darker blue than her light blue skin. Her eyes were large and black. She was lovely and alien, and he couldn't tear his eyes away from the sight of her.

"Think carefully, mortal. Do you really wish for immortality? Are you willing to give everything for what you seek?"

"Yes," he said, tears of joy glistening in his eyes.

"Then drink from the cup, and you shall have it."  She touched the water in his cup and it started to glow.

He gulped the water down eagerly. It tasted bitter. He felt something start to change within him.

"I can feel it!" He said to her. "It's happening!"

"Yes, it is." He wondered why she looked so sad as she said the words.

But it was too late to ask. His body was frozen in place. He felt a heaviness overcome his senses, and his skin started to change color. Just as he began to realize what was happening to him, his skin and organs turned to stone. He became a living statue, forever gazing over the lake.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Book of the Sea

art by Robert Fyfe
Book of the Sea
by Rebecca Fyfe
Jenny looked on the shelves for the book she would choose today. She loved days like this, when her mom brought her to the library and let her choose any book to spend time reading. After perusing book after book, her eyes fell upon the one she knew she had to read.

Its spine was a dark blue with gold lining. The lettering was gold embossing. On the cover, there was a picture of the ocean, and the gold lettering gave the title, "Book of the Sea." Jenny loved the ocean. Her second favorite place to visit, second only to the library, was the beach.

She waited until they got home to read it. She ran up to her room and laid out on her bed and then, slowly, cracked open the aged spine of the book. Before reading the words, she liked to look through the pictures in the book. A few pages in, she came across the first picture. It showed a pirate ship with a handsome young pirate standing at the stern and looking out to sea. Dolphins swam alongside the ship. Jenny couldn't help thinking that the picture needed something else in it, maybe mermaids.

A melancholy singing started to surround her, seemingly coming from the book. It was accompanied by the sound of the sea, waves swelling and settling. before Jenny could process the strangeness of this, she noticed that the picture was moving. The ocean beneath the pirate ship was moving, rocking the ship, and there were people moving around on the ship. Even the handsome young pirate had moved from the stern of the ship and was walking towards the aft.

She reached a finger out to the moving water in the picture, not quite believing what she was seeing. It felt wet, but even as that realization hit her she felt everything around her begin to swirl and spin. She couldn't focus on anything as the room spun around her and when, at last, the whirling sensation eased and she was able to focus again, she was not herself anymore and no longer in her room.

She found herself in the ocean, with a mermaid tail helping her swim easily through the water and dolphins for company. The pirate ship was too her right, and she could still hear that strange haunting melody being sung, but she couldn't tell where the song was coming from.

The young pirate who had captured her interest stood to the port side of the ship, leaning over the rail. He had noticed her and was transfixed by the sight of her. He yelled to her in a language she didn't understand and she swam closer to the ship, wanting to be closer to him. When she was almost near enough to touch the ship, he drew a sword and, to Jenny's surprise, threw it at her.

She quickly glided away from the ship, out of range of any weapons and continued to watch. Why had he tried to hurt her? Were these pirates afraid of her? Or did they think they could gain something by killing or capturing her? Jenny wished she still had the book with her so she could find out more about where she was and about the people in this world.

As soon as Jenny had the thought, the ocean starting swirling around her, spinning her around and around in a vortex, a whirlpool that made her dizzy and dragged her under the ocean's surface. She closed her eyes for a moment and when she opened them again, the spinning had stopped and she was in her room again. The magical book, the "Book of the Sea," was still open to the page with the illustration.

Jenny started reading, making sure not to wish or hope for anything until she was finished reading all that she could. She fully intended to visit the strange world again, if the magic of the book allowed, but next time, she would be armed with knowledge about the world she was going to.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Daughters of Poseidon

This is the mythology behind a series of novels I am writing. The series is called "Daughters of Poseidon" and the first book is, currently, called "Siren Song." The title is only a working title though and might change before publication of the first book in the series. (This mythology was written on April 22nd, 2014, but is being posted retrospectively (back-dated) on April 14th, to take the place of the story I did not manage to write on that day. I am trying to have one story posted for every day in April.) The Daughters of Poseidon has a Facebook page, where you can find updates and excerpts from the series as it is created. If you are interested in learning more about the series, please go and "like" the Daughters of Poseidon Facebook page.

Daughters of Poseidon
by Rebecca Fyfe

Poseidon, the god of the sea, had nine daughters. His daughters were allowed to marry anyone they chose, and eight of the nine chose human men to marry, shucking their mermaid forms and taking on human forms so that they could assimilate into the human world.

As the centuries passed, their children had children and much of their sea magic was diluted through the generations. A legend foretold that each of the eight who had entered the human world would someday have an heir, many generations removed from them, with the genes for sea magic, even stronger than the sea magic that the original daughters possessed. Their powers would be asleep until Poseidon chose to awaken them when he had need of them.

Their powers are awakened when the ocean was in great need. The ocean is dying, and if the ocean dies, the world will die with it. Each of these new daughters of Poseidon are gifted with different powers and reside in different parts of the world. They will each face different trials, but after each one has passed her trial, they will all be brought together for a much more dangerous mission.

The ninth original daughter, the one who stayed in mermaid form, became resentful of her sisters once they had left for the human world and she instills this resentment in each of the generations after her. No one knows if the ninth new daughter of Poseidon will help or hinder the eight in their quest to save the world.

The fate of the world rests on these nine daughters of Poseidon.

Sunday, 13 April 2014


art by Robert Fyfe
by Rebecca Fyfe

The ship's sailing had been easygoing for the past few days. The water had been calm and tranquil. But today, things were different. Today, the storm had moved in and Eric wasn't sure that the ship was going to make it out of this one.

The waves were crashing over the aide of the ship, sweeping everyone and everything that wasn't tied down overboard. The swells from the sea were tossing the ship in every direction and the thunderous waves had caused the ship to list first one way and then the other, falling so far to each side that it almost overturned several times.

Several crewmembers had already been tossed overboard. Eric had been unable to save them, needing all his strength just to keep himself from being swept into the ocean.The dark clouds had blocked the sun, and the storm had lasted for so long that Eric wondered what god they had angered to cause such a continuous and violent attack on their ship.

As the waves lashed at his face, her thought he glimpsed something in the water, something close by when the ship listed so far to the side that he could almost touch the ocean's surface. It was a very large fish of some sort, for he'd seen the scales. And yet, he thought, for a brief moment, that he'd glimpsed a woman, with her long, dark hair flying behind her in the wind as she surfaced. She'd gazed at him, her eyes full of sorrow. But Eric knew that his eyes had just been playing tricks on him. There had been no women on board, and, if one had fallen over, she would not have been able to surface again so soon, let alone stare at him so calmly.

Eric heard a large crack and knew immediately what it meant. The ship was falling apart. None of them would survive this night. He untied the rope from his waist and waited for his imminent slide into the sea. It would be better to let the sea take him quickly than to cling to debris and hope for a rescue that would never come.

Eric felt the wind rush past him as he fell and then the cold, wet of the ocean swallowed him. Instead of drifting down as he expected, he felt arms wrap around his chest and something propelled him upward. As his head broke the surface, he finally looked upon his rescuer. She was lovely. It was the woman with the sorrowful eyes. She held him in her arms just above the water, and stroked his cheek.

"You will live," she whispered and he felt his eyes closing against his will as an unnatural fatigue overwhelmed him and sleep claimed him.

When he woke, he was lying alone on a beach with debris from the ship all around. He saw two of his crew members on the sand too, but when he checked, their bodies had already grown cold from the unrelenting hands of death.

Eric looked out to sea and saw her in the distance. She dove under water, a long multi-colored tail surfacing behind her before splashing back down into the ocean. He knew he had her to thank for his life, and he vowed to help protect the ocean's waters from then on.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Drowning Mermaids

art by Robert Fyfe
Drowning Mermaids
by Rebecca Fyfe

It was time for the children to come out of the pool. They'd been playing and splashing in the pool, wearing floating devices for their safety, with all of us parents watching them carefully. We made sure they were safe.

But now it was the parents' turn to swim. Everyone made sure their kids came out of the pool and went off to play. I pulled my daughter out of the pool too. She was only three years old and she didn't know how to swim. The whole time she played in the pool, I made sure that she kept the inflatable ring around her waist and remained in the shallow end, and I didn't take my eyes off of her even once. Now, I set her on her feet outside the pool.

Becca pleaded with me, using her big, sad eyes to soften me towards her cause. "P'ease," she asked, "let me 'tay in de wadder!

I stayed firm with her, but she continued to make her plea. She told me she would keep her ring on and she would just sit on the steps in the shallow end. She wouldn't go any further. She promised.

And I gave in. I never should have given in.

Her father was lying on a lounge chair near the pool, enjoying the sun. He assured me he would keep an eye on her. So I agreed.

I joined my friends at the other end of the pool. I missed swimming. Swimming had always been natural for me, although I preferred the salty ocean water to chlorinated pool water. I chatted with my friends and let myself get lost in the feeling of floating as I remained under water for long minutes at a time.

I still blame myself. I should have been the one to keep an eye on her. Or I should have told her "no." If I had, it never would have happened.

I had just finished swimming to the bottom of the deep end and back up again, my face just breaking the surface of the pool water when I heard my friend Janice scream. I immediately turned towards Becca's location, my heart beating so fast I felt as if it was going to burst from my chest.

She was no longer on the steps, but within seconds, my searching brought me to her location. The tips of her pudgy little fingers were just breaking the surface of the water. She wasn't tall enough to come up for air. She was just standing there, helpless.

"She's drowning!" Donald, Janice's husband, yelled and we all started swimming towards her as fast as we were able. I was much faster than any of the others. I'd always been a fast swimmer.

But I was too late.

After that day, I left my husband. His eyes accused me every time they were turned my way. This life had ended, and I had no choice but to leave everything behind.

Everything but her.

He hadn't known, before that day. No one did. No one knew what I was. No one had any idea where I really came from. I had settled into that life so easily. I loved my husband passionately. He's the reason I left my previous life. But I never confessed to him where I was from. He didn't know.

What happened to Becca changed everything. When she emerged from the water, moments before I reached her, with her beautiful scales reflecting multi-faceted colors from the sunlight, when she realized that she could swim with ease and even breathe under water, I knew we couldn't stay.

So she and I have returned to the sea now. She misses her dad, but he would never be able to survive in the ocean, and I can't risk us living above ground. If the human world found out about us, neither of us would be safe. None of merkind would be.

She loves her grandparents though, and that's the one good thing that has come from this. Well, that and the fact that I'm back in the ocean again. I hadn't realized, until I returned, how much I missed it. This might not be ideal, but we're happy.

Friday, 11 April 2014

The Teacup Mermaid

This story was written on April 20th,2014 but back-dated to the April 11th post, as no story/post was written on that day.

The Teacup Mermaid
by Rebecca Fyfe
I browsed through the jewelry stand in the market. Some of the handcrafted pieces were even lovelier than anything I could find in one of the pricier jewelry shops. My gaze found an enchanting piece. It looked like a tiny mermaid captured inside a clear quartz. I couldn't imagine how much work it must have taken to create the piece, but I knew that I wanted it. I didn't even haggle with the woman who owned the stand; I paid full price.

I'd been collecting mermaid figurines, mermaid jewelry and mermaid art ever since I was child. I'd always found the concept of mermaids fascinating, and I'd even researched many of the legends and folklore surrounding mermaids and sirens, including sea nymphs and sea gods.

At home, I set the jewelry on my kitchen counter while I made cup of tea. I must have forgotten it there, because I went to bed without putting the necklace away in my jewelry box. In the morning, the piece was still on my kitchen counter, but something very important had changed. There was no mermaid within the rock's crystalline surface. I puzzled about this for a while, and even looked around to see if maybe part of the stone had been broken, but I found no evidence to suggest it had.

It wasn't until I grabbed the tea cup I had left on the counter by the sink the night before that I found out what had happened to the mermaid inside my jewelry. She was sitting inside the cup, splashing what was left of the tea over her tail to try and keep it moist.

I gasped. How could this be? Mermaids were just stories and legend. How could one be real? And here in my home? And so tiny?

She heard my gasp and as i stood there with question after question tumbling through my mind, she sighed and said, "The least you could do is help me! I need water."

I couldn't seem to find my voice in order to say anything to her, so I took the cup to the sink and filled it with water. I then took the salt shaker out of the cupboard and sprinkled some into the water in the cup. Mermaids needed salt water, right?

This situation was insane, and I had many questions for my teacup mermaid, but before I could answer them, she smiled at me, thanked me and she began to grow. As she grew her tail turned into legs. She was about halfway through her transformation before I realized that I was changing too. I was growing smaller.

Within a very short amount of time, I found myself trapped inside a quartz stone, the very same one she had been trapped in. Of course, now she was the human and I was the mermaid. How long was I going to be trapped? From the smug look on her face, I suspected I was going to be trapped in this necklace for a very long time.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

A Siren's Capture

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A Siren's Capture
by Rebecca Fyfe

Sirena's heart beat sped up as the ship came into sight. She and her sisters had been waiting for a ship to appear for months now. It had been so quiet here. Drowning their first sailor was a rite of passage for all sirens that announced their passage from childhood to adulthood, and Sirena had waited so long with her sisters. She was one of triplets and all three of them had been waiting for this day; the day when they became full-grown sirens and started being treated like adults. They'd been waiting 15 years for this, and then they had to wait an additional three months for a ship to appear in their bay.

Sirena's two sisters, Coral and Marina started singing, the spell from their enchantment woven into the threads of their song and weaving its way to the ship and its unsuspecting sailors. Sirena knew she should start singing too, but she wanted to see what the sailors were like without the enchantment pulling at them. Coral and Mina's songs were only strong enough to enchant one or two men at a time, so there would still be some men unaffected on the ship.

She'd seen men before, but always under the spell of one of the sirens in her colony. Once under enchantment, the men had no mind of their own, ruled only by the enchantment that urged them to follow their siren enchantress at all costs. And they only lasted moments before sea water filled their lungs and death claimed them. Curiosity made Sirena wanted to find out more about these men before her enchantment pulled them under.

Sirena swam closer to the ship, her long tail and fluke making her movements swift and graceful as she glided smoothly up to the side of the ship. She heard voices. There were men on the ship moving towards the stern. She could tell from their faces that they were already under her sisters' spells. There were five of them, Sirena noted, so one of her sisters' enchanted singing was particularly powerful. None of the other men working on the ship had noticed the five men moving ever closer to the edge of the ship. A young man was pulling up a fishing net, his strong arms making short work of it. She was close enough that she knew he was within range of one of her sisters' songs, but he didn't seem to be affected  by it.
 Interesting, Sirena thought. He obviously can hear her singing but remains unaffected by it.

She watched him for a while. When he finished his work, he moved to help some of the other men with theirs. He was quick to smile at the others, but he never said a word. At times, she saw him motioning with his hands and the men would motion back with their hands. She wondered what it meant that he never spoke and seemed to communicate through his hands instead. She found that she was having trouble taking her eyes off of him. She was watching him so closely that she had forgotten to take care not to be seen.

A shout rang out and Sirena felt a net drop over her. The more she struggled, frantic to free herself, the more trapped in the net she became. It felt like only moments had passed before she could feel herself and the net being hauled onto the ship. She stilled herself. She'd heard horror stories of what happened to her kind when caught by fishermen.

She landed with a thud on the deck of the ship, still tangled helplessly in the fishing net. I can enchant them, Sirena thought, quickly trying to come up with a plan for escape. It will work on one or two of them and that might be enough to break free and slip back over the side. the men were shouting back and forth to one another, excited with their unusual catch, so she sang as loud as she could.

Her song began to weave its way around the men. One man, then two, then a third feel under her spell. She looked at the man she had been watching for so long. He wasn't under her spell, but he'd noticed the slack-jawed look that had fallen over the others. Sirena continued to sing. A fourth man fell under her spell. Then a fifth. As far as she knew, no siren had ever enchanted so many men at once.

The five under her spell moved towards her and started removing the net from around her. She smiled at them and kept singing, but more men were coming. The one man seemed to remain immune, but he didn't try and stop the others from freeing her. He just watched, a suspicious expression on his face.

She struggled to move herself to the edge of the boat, but her fins were ungainly and clumsy out of the water. Suddenly, strong arms wrapped around her and lifted her. She turned, still singing, to see who held her and it was the man she had been so entranced by. He carried her to the edge of the ship.

Sirena looked into his eyes and risked the song ending for a moment. "Thank you," she said, still looking deeply into his eyes.

He gave her a quick nod in acknowledgment and helped her over the side. She looked back at him once more and swam away.

She wouldn't be drowning a sailor today, but then, Sirena wasn't sure she ever wanted to drown a sailor, even if it meant never being considered an adult.

When she joined her sisters, she found that she didn't need to drown a sailor. Everyone from her colony had come to her rescue. When her sisters had noticed her capture, they'd released their own sailors from their spells in order to swim for help. Everyone had arrived in time to see her enchant five sailors, more than any siren before her had been capable of doing.

The whole colony was celebrating that night, not just in thanks for her powerful song but for her safe return.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The Legend of Merkind and the Harpies

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The Legend of Merkind and the Harpies

by Rebecca Fyfe

Long ago, mermaids could be found in all corners of the ocean. There were different races of mermaids: the dark haired sirens who sang sailors to their deaths, the copper-haired mermaids who watched over the sea and all of its creatures, and the golden-haired sea nymphs who were fascinated with mankind and most often shed their tails in favor of legs and living amongst the humans.

Today, mermaids are so scarce that few believe they ever existed. It's because of the Harpies. Harpies were much larger and stronger than mermaids, but they were very beautiful. Though they had wings to carry them high into the sky and all across the land, they were sea carnivores, preferring to feast on fish and dolphins and other creatures from the sea.

One day, the Queen of the Harpies fell upon a mer-princess, one of the dark-haired sirens and carried her off, feasting on her later that night. The siren's final song, sung in place of her death cries, layed a curse on all Harpies, making them forever hideous and misshapen, with beaks in place of their nose and mouth and claws for their fingers. Their feet became those of a bird of prey.

The Harpies blamed all merkind for this tragedy and their Queen commanded that all of merkind be hunted down and killed. They killed every mermaid, siren or sea nymph that they found, even the children. The few sirens, mermaids and sea nymphs who were left banded together and hid themselves down in the deepest part of the ocean, where the Harpies could not reach them. They are so rarely seen now, that humankind has stopped believing they exist.

But the legend claims that they have lived in a city under the sea, building up their numbers for centuries now, training for battle. And one day, they will rise again and have their revenge on the Queen of the Harpies and her descendants. The legend foretells that mankind will be caught in the middle and will suffer until the chosen human, one with the power of a siren's song, the power over water that the mermaid's possess and a sea nymph's ability to shed or gain a tail, rises to save them all.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Mermaid Huntress

This was written in the 10th of April but back-dated in the blog to the 8th due to my missing writing a story on that date.
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Mermaid Huntress
by Rebecca Fyfe

Shalana peered through the dark waters, waving seaweed wandering in and out of her vision as she hid behind it. She kept as still as a manta ray hiding in the sand.

Others in her tribe had no patience, but Shalana had learned that patience was the key to a great huntress's success. She waited.

Small fish swam by, some tuna and the occasional guppy. A clownfish darted by, hiding along the way amongst the swaying sea anemones. Shalana wasn't interested in any of them, so she waited more.

The others had chosen different hunting grounds, so she was on her own today. Shalana didn't mind. Being alone was better. No one would interfere with the hunt, and she could wait until the right prey came along without fear that someone else would scare it off or swoop in and take it from her.

Before long, entire schools of fish sped past her. She could sense their frantic heartbeats and knew that her prey was almost in place.

As the last of the fish swam past, everything went still, but only for a moment. Then water seemed to be pushed ahead of a large creature that barged into Shalana's view. The great white shark, sensing her presence, slowed and circled carefully, trying to find the presence it sensed.

Shalana waited until just the right moment and left her hiding spot behind the swaying seaweed, her trident raised and speared the beast right through its head before it had a chance to face her.

She tied the ropes she had made from seaweed around it and started carting it home. She hurried home with her prize; she knew the blood would bring other sharks if she didn't hurry. This was large enough to feed the entire tribe for tonight.

Monday, 7 April 2014

The Mermaid and the Gargoyle

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The Mermaid and the Gargoyle

by Rebecca Fyfe

Melody stumbled. She still hadn't quite gotten the hang of walking on legs yet. She missed her lovely tail and fins, but she only had a week left before she could go home to the sea. It was a rite every mermaid had to endure: one month in the human world, on land, when a mermaid turned 16. A few elderly mermaids and mermen lived permanently on land amongst the humans and gave younger mermaids a safe place to stay during their rite of passage.

It was difficult to remember why this tradition had originally come about. Melody vaguely remembered being taught something about learning to better understand humankind and being more aware of the reasons why they had to remain hidden. One thing she did know is that the current tradition required young mermaids to actively try and change a few of humankind's minds about protecting the environment, specifically the ocean. The theory was that if they could get enough humans to take action, the sentiment might spread.

As Melody turned a corner into the alley behind the apartment she was staying in with old Moira, she heard a noise ahead, coming from behind the dumpster. She paused, wary. Despite living with elders, there were still dangers in the human world. Too many humans had become violent predators, preying on their own kind. But this wasn't a human she had heard. No, the smell was off. Her instincts told her that whatever was behind that dumpster was dangerous.

She turned to run and heard the shriek of a harpy behind her. Harpies had hunted merkind for centuries. She'd never be able to run fast enough! She saw the shadow of the harpy's wings fall over her, and then a different sound came from behind her, a sort of oomph. And the shadow fell away.

Shaking, Melody turned to face whatever had come for her. But the harpy lay crumpled on the ground, its wings splayed out around it, a trickle of blood oozing from a cut on its head.

The creature behind the harpy was immense, bigger than any creature she had seen outside of the sea. He was humanoid, but his skin was grey. He had large wings on his back in the shape of a bat's wings, and horns on his head. His nose looked smooshed. He was covered in muscles and looked powerful.

"You saved me. Thank you." Melody's voice was soft and unsure. "Is she...?"

"Dead?" His voice rumbled out like the sound of rocks rolling downhill. "No, she'll wake up eventually."

"What are you?" Melody knew it was rude to ask, but she knew he wasn't human and her curiosity got the better of her.

"Gargoyle. You've seen me before. My perch is here on your building."

Melody remembered seeing several large gargoyle statues gracing the rooftop of the apartment building she was staying in with Moira.

"I didn't know - I didn't realize - " Melody stumbled over her words, not knowing quite what to say.

"Some of us were created as protectors of humans. I, and the others you have seen, are tasked as protectors of the Merpeople."

Melody learned that her rescuers name was Granite. He walked her to her apartment and then left. Melody assumed that he returned to his stony persona on the roof.

She couldn't sleep that night; thoughts of Granite kept tumbling through her mind. She felt safer knowing he was nearby, a protective presence watching over the building. She wondered if they would meet again, and she realized that she was no longer as anxious for her time amongst the human world to end.