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Private Legend's faded storyline tried to warn us all

Discussion in 'Myrtle Beach and the Shimmering Sea' started by John Silver, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    November 4th, Year 7
    @Ariel Tritonsdatter



    Was it true that the more a sailor tired of the sea, the more likely he was to return to its waves?
    John had never spend much thought on such assumptions, never considered himself a sailor or a pirate, never actively thought about what his journey might mean.
    But in the end, even in a different dimension, he had not been able to escape the call of the sea. Of course he's tried to busy himself with other things, had worked and went out and only allowed himself to return to the seaside once in a while. And every time he had found himself waiting for familiar sails, the black raised high on the mast, floating across the waves as if it wasn't made of wood and metal. Every time he's awaited the Walrus to appear at the horizon even though he's watched it sink with his own eyes. Even though he knew it wasn't here.

    And at some point waiting hadn't been enough anymore. Standing aside and listening had not been enough.

    It would only be a voyage lasting a few days, no more. John had signed up for it before he's had any time to properly think it through. Having served as a Quartermaster plus having several years of experience as a sailor had easily gotten him into the crew for those few days at sea.
    And then he had told himself that this voyage would only remind him of just how much he truly hated the sea, it would make him want to never return to its waters again.
    Lies. Even John was aware of that.
    But it hardly mattered now, when he was standing on the weather deck, running his fingers along the dark wood of the railing. The moon was hidden behind the clouds and most of the crew was below deck, asleep. Only the boastman and the lookout remained, easily ignored all the way across deck.
    It wasn't the Walrus and it weren't the West Indies, it wasn't his crew nor his captain - but John was unable to deny the familiarity and the odd calm which had settled within his chest as soon as the Morning Star had set sail.

    The wind was low, no signs of an upcoming storm. The night lay quietly across the waters, wrapping the ship into velvet darkness.
    John watched the reflection of the stars in the water, not standing still but rocking in the rhythm of the waves.

    "Come, let us drink it while we have breath,
    For there's no drinking after death.
    And he who would this toast deny,
    Down among the dead men,down among the dead men,
    Down, down, down, down;
    Down among the dead men let him lie..."

    The waves swallowed most of his singing and John didn't bother to raise his voice to compete with the sea's own melody. He hardly remembered the words of the song even though he remembered the men singing it on occasion.
    The weight of the cutlass at his hip, the familair coat he's dug up from somewhere in his wardrobe, the leather boots - it was almost as if he was back in 1716 - except for the prosthetic having replaced the crutch, of course (though he still used his walking cane, the cold making his leg ache more than usual) - sailing back to Nassau. Sleepless as he's been on so many nights towards the end of their journey.
    John wasn't certain whether he wanted to fool himself into believing he was back, if only for a few hours. Whether it wouldn't be better to stay here, in Pandora. After all, he knew that looking back into the past could only ever result in negative emotions he'd rather not deal with.

    That was when John suddenly thought to have seen a shadow beneath the water surface, something parting the waters. A fish? No, it was too large to be a fish.
    Shifting his weight and tightening his grip on the redwood walking cane, John supported his elbow on the railing, leaning closer to gaze into the water.
    He had surely not imagined whatever this was, right?


     
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  2. [​IMG]
    As much as people said a mermaid's voice was enchanting, Ariel found that the human aboard the ship's voice was just as so. She had heard his voice, watched him from beneath the water, and then slowly surfaced somewhere to the right where he wasn't looking. It was simple, she wanted to catch a glimpse of him without the blur of the water distorting her view of him. Had she ever been so close to a human before? Despite how far above her he was? In reality, the distance between them wasn't very far at all and she remembered seeing vessels like this in the past which were far larger, but there was still something about her having to crane her neck to see him.

    She could feel tugging on her hand, a familiar little fin belonging to a familiar little voice trying to pull her beneath the water again. "Ariel, come on, let's go," came the voice of her friend, that little yellow tropical fish, his voice quivering with urgency and nervousness. "What if he sees us?"

    "Would that be so bad?" she wondered aloud, though her voice was quiet, practically a whisper in the waves to ears as far as his were. A smile twitched at the corners of her lips, but another tug distracted her and she swore she could see him starting to look her way. She swore she could see him shifting over the railing, leaning to get a better look at the water beneath the night sky. As curious as she was and as secretly hopeful as she was that he might spot her, Ariel found herself acting on instinct and disappearing beneath the water, her tail smacking Flounder in her urgency.

    "Arieeeeel!" he cried beneath the water before his little fish body popped up through the surface and floated there. The round blue and yellow fish stared up at the human staring back down at him with wide eyes before Flounder panicked and suddenly popped back beneath the water again.

     
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  3. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    Certainly he hadn't imagined?
    There were many tales sailors liked the tell in the dark of night when the winds were low and the waves quiet, when the creaking of the wood was like a ghostly whisper in the light of the lanterns.
    John remembered those evenings, sat upon barrels, passing around a bottle of what was a considerably poor excuse for rum. He remembered leaning back and listening to the stories the men shared, smiling to himself about the ridiculousness but equally the beauty of them.
    They spoke of spirits and sirens, of demons and symbols appearing out of nowhere. Of witches and curses and mermaids more beautiful than the sun itself.
    He clearly remembered the conviction in their voices and the faith in their eyes and he had never shattered it, knowing that sometimes fairytales were what kept them alive when the sea grew stormy and the cold, wet grave called. When death breathed down their necks.

    John didn't believe in fairytales. But he believed in stories and the influences they could have, even on him as it seemed. He could swear to have seen a tropical fish in the waters behaving in a way a fish certainly wasn't supposed to. Could swear he's seen something akin to a large fin disappear under the water surface.
    For a moment he remained silent, eyes scanning the dark waves. Something told him that whatever was lurking in the waters was still here.
    And if his singing had lured it out, maybe he would be able to lure it a little closer yet.

    "Oh, the stories we were told,

    Quite a vision to behold.
    Mysteries of the seas in her eyes of gold.
    Lying on the silver stone, such a lonely sight,
    Barnacles become a throne, my poor Loreley.

    You would not believe your eyes, how a voice could hypnotize,
    Promises are only lies from Loreley.
    In a shade of mossy green, seashell in her hand,
    She was born the river queen, ne'er to grace the land.

    And the winds would cry, and many men would die.
    And all the waves would bow down to the Loreley..."

    Not a shanty anymore but it was fitting enough, wasn't it.
    John watched the waters while he sang, slowly walking along the railing, fingers tracing the wood. The low, soft thumb of his walking cane accompanying his slightly uneven steps like the vague attempt at a melody.
    He wasn't certain what he was looking for - as said, after all, he didn't believe in fairytales.
    But maybe even he was hoping for a little bit of wonder from time to time. Even if it was only a dolphin, why not take his chances?
    Beautiful things were to be found everywhere if one only bothered to pause and look for them.

    "I saw you. I know you are here."

    Maybe it wasn't a dolphin he was hoping to find, after all. Those didn't speak English as far as John knew.
    His words didn't sound threatening, quite the opposite; they were gentle and inviting. Curiosity luring him to linger for a little longer, wait for just a hint longer.
    Sleep was not calling him yet anyway, he wasn't tired and knew there was no use to lay and stare at the ceiling in silence.
    He might as well make a fool of himself and sing to the imaginary creatures he believed to have seen hiding in the dark waves.

     
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  4. [​IMG]
    Flounder was having a crisis. Flounder was always having a crisis. Opposites attract, that was what they all said, right? That was why Ariel and Flounder were such wonderful friends, wasn't it? In some aspects, she seemed to be practically fearless while her little fish friend was terrified of everything under the sun and under the sea. But especially under the sun. Everything in the world above was strange and foreign and incredible, but only to Ariel. Flounder wanted nothing to do with it, and yet here they were. Going home didn't seem to be an option, they'd somehow managed to get so hopelessly lost in this unfamiliar ocean.

    But there was this boat and this human and that singing. He had a nice singing voice and Ariel hadn't even noticed that she had been smiling to herself from beneath the water even while the little round fish had a crisis beside her.

    He had seen her. Her? Or had he just seen something strange, something that he couldn't place. Still, it had gotten enough of his attention that he was lingering there on the side of the boat, staring down into the water. She was deep enough not to be seen and had since drifted and off to the side where she could eventually surface again beside wood, pressing her hand flat against its damp surface while she peered around and up toward him once more. He wasn't looking in her direction anymore, so focused on the water below him.

    Only, he had begun to walk and there was no doubt that he would eventually turn his head and his gaze would shift toward her entirely, a red-haired girl floating there in the water, blue eyes staring wide up at him.

    She didn't move. Maybe because she was frozen there in the water and didn't know what to do. Or maybe she really did want to be seen. Whatever the reason, however brave she may have wanted to feel, Ariel felt simultaneously terrified.

     
  5. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    There was nothing for a moment, the waters as still as they rarely were, mocking him. It had probably been but a fish and here he was, stood on deck, making a fool of himself. If anybody should have witnessed this spectacle, John would probably not be allowed on any ship again, ever. They would assume him to be bonkers.

    He sighed, chuckling to himself as he ran a hand through his hair. This was ridiculous. He should be trying to catch some sleep instead of aimlessly walking around on deck, especially in a night as quiet as this one.
    John was about to turn and head below deck when he caught sight of a different color in the waters, one which seemed not to belong.
    Pausing, the former pirate leaned his right forearm onto the railing and gazed into the dark waters again. Just that this time they weren't black and unreadable.
    There was a young woman in the waves, hair red as coral, eyes blue like the clearest waves at Nassau's shores, her skin pale as moonlight and for a moment John thought he was in love. Not as much with the girl herself but rather with the tale of magic and wonder she embodied, with the legends that were made real by the very blood that ran through her veins, leaving the pirate wondering what color it might be.
    John stared in silence for a long, quiet moment. His heart resonating in his ears, the air suddenly seeming thicker. No no, this couldn't be real. She must have survived a shipwreck, must have swam here in the hopes of finding help.
    But even John knew that didn't quite fit.

    He was looking her right in the eye, after all, and there was no suffering to be found there, no pain or agony or cry for help. There was mere curiosity and otherworldly beauty.
    John was grateful for his prosthesis because he might just have lost balance and collapsed otherwise. But not out of fear.
    Not unlike the first time he's went to space, John was utterly awed, childlike amazement lighting up the sea blue of his eyes.
    "Hi..."

    Then, finally, his smile returned to him. Friendly and gentle though he found himself at a loss for words.
    This was a mermaid. An actual mermaid. He had been singing to a mermaid.
    "I do hope my singing didn't wake you."

    Did mermaids sleep? Did they sleep at night? In the water? At shore?
    He recalled the things his crewmates had whispered about those creatures but they had never been of one mind, really, and most of those stories had been much more about what the mermaids could give once you caught one or what they could take once you ended up caught by them. But never much about what a mermaid's life was like.

     
    #5 John Silver, Nov 5, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2017
    Ariel Tritonsdatter likes this.

  6. [​IMG]
    Did she regret this yet? Did she regret staying put and floating there in the gentle waves? Did she regret staring right up at him and waiting for the moment he might make eye contact? She wasn't sure, but there was definitely a part of her that wanted to duck back under the water and go before he even noticed her there. There it was, the pounding of her heart in her chest, the sound of her father's voice in her ears.

    But then he finally did make eye contact and Ariel's blue eyes widened a fraction more. She may have even stiffened slightly in the water, but she didn't dare go anywhere. Maybe because he was just too enchanting to look at. And he was staring back the same way, as though he'd never seen somebody like her before. Did he realize? Did he realize that they weren't the same? He couldn't see her tail from all the way up there, but surely humans didn't spend time in the water so far from shore.

    And then he smiled and that expression alone was enough to help but the mermaid at ease. Ariel hesitated only a moment before she smiled back, and it may have had a shy, nervous edge, but it was also gentle and pleasant. If she were more comfortable, it would have been broad. Eager, excited. Because his presence alone was so exciting. She had never been so close to a human before in her entire life.

    "No," she told him quickly, shaking her head. Never once did her eyes leave his. "But I wouldn't have complained if it had." His voice was pleasant to listen to. His speaking voice just the same as well, she was finding. "Who is Loreley?"

     
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  7. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    [​IMG]

    Much to his surprise the mermaid didn't disappear beneath the water surface as soon as he spoke, leaving John questioning his own sanity.
    Instead she returned his smile and for a moment Silver genuinely considered whether getting onto one of the small boats to be closer to the water would be worth it. Worth the possibility that he might get dragged under the surface and drowned, worth taking a closer look at this creature that couldn't possibly be evil.

    Who is Loreley?
    Her voice was lovely, as was to be expected, right? The legends had to come from somewhere. Surely there was truth to them. Surely mermaids could sing sailors into their deaths, surely they were the wicked, cold-hearted beasts they were described to be. But somehow that struck John as impossible to believe, looking at one now.
    There was something akin to childish curiosity in her eyes - eyes which never left him, clear and soft.

    "She is a siren who lives at the cliff of a famous river, the tale says she has hair golden as the sun and she sings to the sailors that pass by on their ships, distracting them and luring them to their deaths on the rocks. She sits there day in, day out. Brushing her long hair, drops of water running down her pale, long fingers. More beautiful than any words could tell and those who get to see her rarely live long enough to tell the tale."

    Shifting his weight, John leaned further over the railing, allowing the cold breeze of the sea to make him shudder from the cold.

    "She has once been a young woman who's been accused of bewitching men and was made to leave her home. Three knights accompanied her to the nunnery she was forced to go to and along the way she asked to be allowed to view the river one last time.
    The knights allowed it, and so she climbed on top of the cliff and looked down into the water when suddenly, in the early morning mist which lingered upon the quietly murmuring waves, she believed to see her lover in the water.
    Driven by fear, grief and undying love, she fell to her death in an attempt to get to him.
    The rocks still whisper and sing her name, they say. It echoes like a ghostly memory with the tide, rolling in and out with each new wave."

    It was a tale which had not yet existed in the time he's come from. But he's read many books on lore and poetry and of course he had not been able to stay away from all those tales about sirens and mermaids and creepy sea monsters.
    There was something to those stories which so easily made him want to believe them, something in the way they made his heart beat faster, made him smell the sea air even when he was sitting in his own apartment.
    The mystery and dark yet irresistable beauty of such tales lured the reader not unlike the creatures who played the main roles in them did.
    And now, looking at this mermaid, John knew he would always return to those stories, read them over and over again and wonder how many of them were true.

    "Do you have a name?"


     
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  8. [​IMG]
    Siren was a term very new to her. In fact, it was entirely foreign to her and certainly not one she had ever associated with the merpeople, with her people, and so it didn't occur to her then that he might be referring to merpeople at all. It did leave her wondering, though, and Ariel found that the answers he gave her left her with more questions. Was that really such a surprise, though, when she was such a hopelessly curious creature? It was difficult for her not to feel some sort of fascination for every piece of information she received, especially if it was from this incredible world above.

    "What a sad story," she concluded in the end despite taking a moment to decide how she really felt about it all. She could have said more, but the last thing she wanted to do was bombard the poor human with questions even if he did seem rather keen on listening.

    He was certainly keen on asking his own questions, she found, and although she hesitated when he requested a name, Ariel wondered just what exactly the harm could have been. She could heard papa in her ears, warning her away, giving her a very long list of exactly why what she was doing right now was so harmful, and it went all the way back to the day a ship just like this one had killed her mother. But that had been so very long ago.

    Not all ships were bad. Not all humans were bad.

    "It's Ariel," she finally told him. "Do you have a name?" And she supposed it was a valid question in that she had never spoken to a human before in her entire life and it was very possible that they didn't have names.

     
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  9. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    [​IMG]

    A pause followed his tale and it left John wondering just how much this mermaid might know about the world above the surface at all. How much of what he's said many any sense to her to begin with. And inevitably another question followed: what did the world beneath the water surface look like? Deep, deep done where people couldn't dive.
    The thought left John with an odd feeling, equally unsettling and tempting.

    But eventually the mermaid seemed to make up her mind, deciding that the story was a sad one. And it certainly was. Though it was many more things, too, in John's opinion.
    It was beautiful and melancholic and almost believable. Ever since he's discovered it, it had awoken the desire in him to see the cliff of Loreley with his own eyes sometime. Though that would hardly be possible now, that he was stuck in Pandora like all the others, just much less bitter about it than most others were.

    Ariel
    It was a pretty name, rolled off the tongue when John whispered it to himself just to taste the reality behind it. Almost expecting to be unable to speak it aloud at all.
    So mermaids had names - or only one name, that was. He didn't know after all.
    Names which sounded surprisingly human, too. On the other hand, merpeople were half human, after all. Though John wondered how much genuine humanity was within them.

    "That is a beautiful name. Ariel. It suits you."

    And it really did, though the former Quartermaster really couldn't put in words why that was the case.

    "I do have a name, yes. Two, actually. Most know me by the name Silver."

    There was a very clear want to add more questions at this point, there were enough of them to be asked after all. But looking at Ariel it was difficult to focus enough on anything else to even formulate those questions in his head. And maybe that was not a bad thing at all, sometimes asking questions only tended to ruin an experience.

    "You should be careful out there by yourself, there are people who would want to do you harm."

    Maybe if she would have come this close to the hull of the Walrus, that would have been exactly what would have happened. There had been enough superstitious crew mates who would want to catch the mermaid and get a vial of her blood or something the-like.
    And John felt obliged to let her know that. Such a beautiful creature shouldn't need to die in an attempt to gain more knowledge of things she didn't understand.

     
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  10. [​IMG]
    It wasn't the first time she had been told her name was beautiful. She'd even been told she was beautiful before. And that she had a beautiful singing voice, as well. After all, Ariel had always had something of a knack for music. But as flattered as she was by those compliments, it felt different coming from a human. It felt somehow more special, maybe because these were the land creatures she had been taught all her like were terrible and evil.

    He didn't seem so terrible and evil, not to her.

    Silver. Somehow, that suited him, but Ariel couldn't describe why. After all, she didn't know anything about him and at any rate, how the name of a color suit somebody? But it wasn't just color. It was an object, a value, and something very special, at least it was as far as she was aware. It was just another thing Ariel didn't know much about, and there was just so much Ariel knew little about.

    What she did know, though, was that the next thing that came out of his mouth was unexpected and Ariel looked taken aback for a moment, her smile having faded to something uncertain. And then it looked like disappointment, as though she had heard words like those a hundred times before. She just hadn't expected to hear them from the humans she had been dreaming of meeting up close and personal all those years.

    "You sound like my father," Ariel finally admitted.

     
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  11. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    What had been intended as a gentle advice to be cautious had apparently not been received in a good way and for a moment John was concerned the mermaid would just dive under and disappear again.
    Her smile faded and the sailor couldn't help but wonder what it was that had upset her about his words. Was she concerned there was a threat lingering somewhere within them, that he was mocking her, that he thought she couldn't take her of herself?

    There was no need to ask though because Ariel answered his question herself.
    You sound like my father
    For a moment John was surprised, not really knowing what to make of this information. He's never had a family, he didn't know what it was like to have a father being concerned for his well-being.
    But thinking about this logically was eventually what made John realize what the issue seemed to be. Parents always wanted the best for their children, and in that attempt could easily become over protective. So maybe her father had always tried to prevent her from getting close to humans, and now John was basically doing the same.
    He could understand the frustration, in a way. Being tied down went against everything he held dear and important, too. And John was convinced that staying away from danger all the time never really saved one either.

    With a gentle smile he shook his head, deciding to explain himself.
    "I am not saying you shouldn't explore whatever your heart desires to explore - quite the opposite, try as much as you can. In the end what we will regret most will be the things we didn't do. But a little bit of caution is adviced, is all I am saying. Not all people are friendly and not all places are without danger."

    That was a very mild way of putting it. The world was cruel and merciless, John knew that. But it was also filled with beauty, and he didn't want Ariel to only expect bad from the world.


     
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  12. [​IMG]
    He seemed surprise by that statement and she supposed she could understand why. They didn't know each other at all, and although he seemed to have some understanding of what she was and she had some understanding of what he was, that didn't tell either of them very much at all, did it?

    Still, the more he spoke, the more she understood. He wasn't speaking about humanity, about his own kind, the same way that her father did. It was different, it was a more healthy type of caution, she supposed. An understanding that there were good humans and bad humans, just in the same way that there were good merfolk and bad merfolk. Why should existing above the water have made that any different? Weren't people just ... people?

    "I'm always careful," she was quick to tell him, though not defensively. She just wanted him to understand. All she knew was caution because her father had drilled that kind of thing into her head.

    And yet ... well, anybody who really knew her would have called her reckless, which was arguably the opposite of cautious.

    "... Well ... except for now." There was a smile on her face, but it was straightened as though she had been somehow been caught red-handed in a bold-faced lie. Who was she really kidding here?

     
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  13. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    [​IMG]

    It was easy to say 'always' and then add exceptions, John knew that. In all fairness he did that a lot himself, too. Saying that he was always careful, except when he wasn't. That he didn't care about anyone, except when he did.
    The naivity in the mermaid's words lured a laugh from him nonetheless.

    "Exceptions are allowed. Caution rarely offers worthwhile experiences, after all, so I will let your lack of caution pass this once."

    The words were friendly and not quite serious. Christ, who was he to judge a mermaid, in all fairness?
    What did he know about merpeople anyway?
    For all he knew she could be invincible and immortal - such creatures existed around here, after all. Nothing should come as a surprise anymore, not in this place.
    "What's it like - life as a mermaid? Don't you get lonely?"

    It was possibly one of the vaguest questions John's ever asked anybody in his life - but that was mostly due to the fact that tehre was too much to ask and he simply couldn't think of where to start, what was appropriate, and how much he could ask without annoying the living hell out of the poor girl. Certainly she was just as curious as he was. John doubted she's gotten to see a lot of the world yet, at least not when it came to the parts of the world which weren't submerged in water.

    Why his first thought was that a mermaid's life must be lonely, he also didn't know.
    Perhaps that was because the ocean tended to make him feel lonely. Its steady lullaby grew tiring, its endlessness woke distant feelings of hopelessness.
    He's never been too fond of the sea, but he could aknowledge its beauty, despite everything. And yet, it always struck him as a rather lonely place, though John doubted he would ever be able to properly explain why that was.

     
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  14. [​IMG]
    The first part of his question was broad and, to be perfectly honest, she didn't know how to answer it. How did you describe life as a mermaid? Was that like asking him what life as a human was like? It felt like a strange question, to somehow describe in short words everything that you were. The second part of his question, though, was a little bit easier to center in on.

    "Right now?" she asked, wincing slightly as though they would have both known the answer to that question. "I haven't seen a single member of my kind since I got here." So that was a yes, it just felt a little bit hard to say that single word as though it would have proved her father right, that if she ventured too far, she would regret it. That she would regret leaving behind everything, that she needed her family.

    She did need her family.

    "But not before. I have six sisters!" she added with a smile. "My best friend is here, too, and he might be the only thing keeping me sane-- Flounder?" The call was sudden and distracted as she dropped her gaze to the water and drifted in a little circle. "Where did you go, you guppy? We're making friends!"

    Suddenly, she was gone, diving beneath the water in a splash and a streak of green. The water had stilled before she came back up again, the yellow tropical fish quivering in her arms as he stared up at John with wide eyes of horror.

    And then she released him, letting him flop back into the shelter of the water, suddenly disappearing out of sight again.

    "Oh, Flounder, he's not going to eat you!"

     
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  15. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    It might haven taken John a moment but he, too, realized that simply asking her what it was like to be the person she was must have been a rather complicated question to answer. He doubted he would have been able to answer it in her place, either - he already struggled when people asked him what it was like to be a pirate.

    Ariel's first answer definitely sounded like a yes - it was difficult to imagine for John, to wake up one day and find the entire world without a single human around. It sounded... terrifying to be entirely honest. But maybe he was simply afraid of being entirely alone.
    What this must be like for Ariel he couldn't even begin to imagine. The ocean was big, it was deep, it was cold and lonesome and -.... well. It was seriously big for one lonely mermaid.
    But not before. I have six sisters!
    The words lured a surprised smile from the sailor.
    Six sisters was a lot, though he'd be lying saying it didn't sound pretty nice, actually. He would have liked to have a sister or two.

    When the mermaid mentioned a friend and suddenly dived underwater, John wasn't really certain what to expect but a tropical fish was definitely not what he had expected.
    Even though same fish only made a short appearance before disappearing into the water again, John couldn't help but wonder whether, just perhaps, the loneliness had indeed gotten to Ariel and she was making things up here. On the other hand, he reminded himself: he was talking to a mermaid. How unlikely was it really that her best friend was damned fish?

    "You-...you can talk to the fish?"

    There was no judgement in his voice but rather awe and perhaps a touch of childish excitement. Hasn't there been a point in everyone's lives when they've wondered what it would be like to be able to understand animals and be able to talk with them?

     
    #15 John Silver, Dec 31, 2017
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  16. [​IMG]
    The idea that he might think she was completely insane didn't seem to occur to her at all as she watched Flounder disappear beneath the water again. As a matter of fact, Ariel was so used to her ability to speak with the ocean life around her that she completely forgot about the fact that humans couldn't. Or so she had always assumed. The mermaid had never in her life heard of a fish having spoken to a human before.

    "Of course!" she said with a little smile. "And seagulls, too. They're very chatty, and I think they may be a little bit possessive, too," Ariel admitted, wincing slightly. That was probably rich coming from her given the fact that she had a grotto full of human stuff she had found under the sea.

    Some people may have called her a hoarder.

    "Don't humans talk to land animals? Like those fluffy ones," she said with a smile, because she was sure she had seen them playing together before and communicating as well.

     
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  17. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    Wasn't it weird, how sometimes the things said about something unknown but merely observed, made that much sense?

    Things generally, usually, were easier to judge from an outside perspective - to spot the flaws and understand the functions was easier when not personally involved in any of it but a mere observer.
    So it probably shouldn't have been all that surprising after all, that Ariel's argument about fluffy land animals made perfect sense, somehow.

    "Well ...yes, we do. But we don't understand them. I guess, talking to them is our way of expressing our care for them? I understand if that doesn't make much sense to you. Saying it that way now almost doesn't make sense to me either."


    Laughing, he thought about how utterly silly this whole thing was. Why, indeed, did people talk to their pets, knowing damn well that most likely these pets didn't understand them at all, not to mention they definitely didn't understand their pets either.
    But humans have never made much sense, have they now?

     
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  18. It didn’t make much sense at all, he was right, and Ariel admittedly looked a little bit perplexed by the concept along as she stared up at him. But not in a bad way. It was just another incredible thing to learn about humans and life on land. That they communicated with their furry friends by speaking with them, whether they understood one another or not. She’d always known humanity was more than a little bit strange, but that was the charm of them.

    “I wish I could get out of this water and explore your world,” she admitted after a moment. “Do you have one of those fluffy animals, too? The ones that jump around with their tongues out.”

     
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  19. John Silver

    John Silver Black Sails
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    The mermaid's desire to explore the human world was not unexpected, oddly enough - and maybe that didn't make her so different from a human, either.
    Humans were known for always wanting what they didn't have, simply because the unknown things were always the most appealing ones. But for humans it was usually greed that drove them, with Ariel here John couldn't imagine that being the motivation.
    Having lived one's entire life in the sea and never stepping on land... he also would have been curious to explore what that was like.

    And of course, at this point, he could have warned her, could have told her that humanity was cruel and unforgiving, that they would harm her - but where was the use in that? Why should she listen?
    John knew he wouldn't have listened in her place, and he didn't blame her.
    "We call them dogs - but no, I don't have one. Sadly. They're great companions."

    He smiled softly.

    "If you want to see our world, don't give up. I am sure there is some way to make that possible, just never stop looking."

    Because too rarely did anyone ever bother encouraging another, John knew that. Too rarely did anyone bother trying to inspire someone's ideas and goals, tell them that nothing was impossible if only they never gave up.

    "Here. Keep this, as a memory."

    He slid one of the silver rings from his fingers and gently threw it towards the mermaid to catch. It wasn't like he didn't have enough of them and it was silver, it wouldn't rust. And, somehow, John felt like she would appreciate it more than he did anyway.

     
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  20. Hearing her father’s words coming from the lips of a human would have been strange, unlike anything she could ever have imagined. It might have broken her heart, too, to hear a human say her, to tell her that her dreams had always been a waste because they were wrong. Useless. Hearing what John Silver had to say, though, she smiled and felt more hopeful than anything else.

    She would never stop looking.

    Eyes widening when she spotted him taking that ring off of his finger, tossing it to her, Ariel found herself leaning back in the water to catch it in her hands, staring down at the shining metal for a moment. A moment later, she was staring up at him again. “Are you sure? I can’t-- I can’t just take this, it’s--” She hesitated. “--beautiful.” It was almost funny, really, knowing that if it had been dropped into the ocean by accident and she had come across it that way, Ariel wouldn’t have hesitated to take it and add it to her collection.

    This felt different. It felt more personal.

     
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