Fin Fun presents a mermaid story from Mermaiden Brynn
“Ah, my head’s mince,” I muttered to myself as I swam toward the coast by myself. Well, Fergus was with me, but his bonnie blubber was much happier chasing orbs of light than listening to my problems.
The setting sun glittered on the cresting waves when we broke the surface, casting everything in a warm glow. Fergus shot out of the water, mouth wide open to catch the next orb, but he narrowly missed and reentered the water with a giant splash.
“You wee scunner!” I called, diving on top of him in mock annoyance.
He wiggled out of my grasp and eyed me with a defiant look just out of reach.
“Ah, ye want another orb? Well, go get it, boy!” In one of my hands, a ball of light grew until it was the size of one of those inflatable ones I saw landfolk play with. I launched it across the waves, and it barrelled along the water’s surface past Fergus.
He jumped, flippers stretched wide, and landed on top of it. Sparks flew in every direction, and Fergus barked with glee.
I smiled. It was good to be back, and it was good to have Fergus by my side again. I glanced down at my right hand, where I was wearing a gold ring inlaid with a shell and one of my power-enhancing emeralds. Three more were in each of the earrings I wore. I wonder what more I can do with my power, I thought. Surely, I’m meant to do more than guide ships.
“Mermaiden Brynn, you shouldn’t act so foolishly.”
Oh, right. I wasn’t alone with Fergus.
The morning after hearing the story of Calla from MerKing Takumi, we gathered to discuss our thoughts and ideas. While the story was interesting, none of us knew how it would help us track down Callisto. So, the MerKing saw fit to send us all home until we received further information.
I was still bleary-eyed from lack of sleep by the time I emerged from the transport caves in the Celtic Sea, but my da was anxious to hear the details of the Sea of Japan’s attack. I filled both my parents in and explained why I was home for the time being.
Honestly, I think they were relieved to have me away from danger. However, Da put me on ship duty that same night, and he wanted to take extra precautions.
He told me, “You’re a smart lass, Brynn, and tough too, but you have to be careful. If the landfolk in the Mediterranean Sea want to capture one of us, who’s to say they won’t try that here?”
His way of protecting me was to send two mermen as guards while I watched for lost ships. The one who reprimanded me was a seasoned soldier with ruddy cheeks, graying hair, and a brick red tail. The other was younger, though still many years older than me, with cropped short auburn hair and a silvery gray tail.
“Well you’re as fun as a rainy day,” I retorted. Sighing, I immediately apologized. “But you’re right. I’ll be more careful.”
The older merman smiled and bowed slightly. “You’re growing, lass. You’ll make a fine queen one day.”
I flashed him a toothy smile. “Well, well! And you haven’t seen me in action yet!” Clouds were creeping in and the sun was fading fast. “Looks like we’re in for a long drizzle tonight,” I added.
I was right. The rain didn’t let up all night long, but the sea was relatively calm and the winds mild. Most of the porting ships didn’t need my help, and the ones that did only needed the smallest orbs of light to guide them.
Fergus swam beside me the whole time, nudging me if he felt we swam too close to the crags. I shouted to him over the storm, “I’m a tad rusty, friend! Thanks for your help!” He happily rubbed his body across my arm in response.
The guards kept their distance and remained onlookers while I worked. I’ll admit, I was hoping for a more adventurous night so I could really show them my power, but it was probably for the best. Keeping my light small wouldn’t raise suspicion, but it would be enough to keep the sailors safe.
This is a bit boring compared to fighting Callisto, I mused. What am I supposed to do until we have an idea of her location? Sleep all day and guide ships all night? No, there must be more. I can’t sit idly! I’ll think of something.
“Mermaiden Brynn, it’s hard to tell through the rain, but it’s morning now!” The younger guard reported.
Though the sky was still dark with clouds, there was a wee bit of light behind them. “Well, lad, I think you’re right! Let’s head home.”
Our swim home was quiet, and I had a hard time keeping my eyes open. At one point, I must have fallen asleep because Fergus nudged my elbow right before I swam headlong into a rock.
“Silly me,” I laughed through my exhaustion. “I’ll just need a little shut-eye and I’ll be good as new!”
I felt slow as a sea slug all the way up to my room. However, I couldn’t help the excitement pouring out of me when I saw my clamshell bed, whittled driftwood trinkets, and purple seaweed plants.
There was something new on my bedside table though. “Oh, what’s this?” I exclaimed, forgetting about sleep.
It was a starfish hairpin with a folded note from Finn. My heart started pounding and I felt my face turning red. I quickly unfolded the note and read its contents.
Welcome home! It’s good to have you back. Fergus tailed me the whole time you were gone, and I’m sad to report that he’s not cut out for stonework. He’ll be much happier guiding lost ships with you!
I’m glad to hear you’re safe (though I wasn’t worried about a strong lassie like you!), and I can’t wait to hear about your latest adventures. I’ll be working on the stone military barracks—we’re ramping up security around here—so come find me when you’re ready! Just don’t tell anyone else about my whereabouts. That Darcy girl hasn’t given me a chance to breathe since you left, and I don’t want her to find me anytime soon.
I’ve missed you and can’t wait to see you,
P.S. I fashioned the hairpin for you. I told you I wouldn’t forget about that starfish!
By the time I finished reading, I realized there was a grin as wide as the sea on my face. I picked up the hairpin and examined it. It was a gorgeous purple sea star with tiny, swirling pearls decorating it.
Quickly, I removed the flower from my hair and replaced it with the starfish. I turned to Fergus and said, “It’s beautiful, and it matches my top! Although, it doesn’t match my hair very well. Hah, that lug must have not thought about my fiery locks! I’ll have to tease him for it later.”
I yawned and sank into the blankets on my bed. “But for now… I’ll sleep.”
Fergus with his silky skin nestled up beside me, but the final thought on my mind was the last time I saw Finn. I had hugged him so tightly and his arms were strong and secure. I think—I think I could stay there forever.