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The swan landed down in the clear pond gently, sending out small ripples in the water as she settled, folding her wings on her back. The body of water itself was secluded by a dense brush of trees, the reason it had chosen to land there. It led out into a river which trailed out and opened into an ocean. Overall, it was pretty deep, but the bird had made itself comfortable in the shallow banks of the pond. Her secretive nature became clear as, craning her neck, she began to grow, becoming more slender and...also seeming to be shedding herself of her skin. Soon, what stood in the wake of the swan was a beautiful (and very much naked) woman, holding in her arms the limp shell of a very stretched out swan.

Cautiously, she looked around her, making sure she really was alone before placing her feathery cloak on the grassy shore and then venturing further out into the cool water. She began to sang to herself as she bathed, cupping the liquid in her pale hands and running it through her long, light blonde hair, which almost looked white in the sunlight that filtered through the leafy canopy above.

Icy Sapphire
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    It had taken years of labour and dedication but looking at the harvest, it was worth it. Mowway Sal skimmed the bottom of the salt water pool seeking and then prying open the shelled mollusks to get at the precious pearls there within. A half dozen centuries ago he had helped the carving waters cut into the land and dig the secluded pool, all so that he could have an undisturbed ground to cultivate.
    Humans had been doing it as long as the merman could remember and he had to agree, why waste his time searching the seafloor for hours, days or even weeks for the precious seaweeds and other ingredients he used often in his potion making when he could simply grow his own.

    The water churned above him, disturbed no doubt by some creature, which Sal confirmed looking up at the large white bird. He need not be concerned about the animal and so turned back to his harvest, when the water again was disturbed, to a much greater extent, calling the Sharkman's attention. Looking overhead, Mowway witnessed the elegant bird shed it's white down and become a landwalker of all things.
    He tried to recall every tale he'd ever heard about such creatures and came to the conclusion that this maiden bathing in his pool was either a magician or a shapeshifter; but wait. she removed the skin and carried it off? shapeshifters didn't do such a thing from what he understood. she was a human magician then, and thus to be avoided......though a beautiful maiden with the voice of a sea nymph (he noticed as he gazed at the woman).

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 07:29am
    Things were peaceful for a good while. Almost finished cleaning herself, she woman submerged herself, somewhat for refreshment but also to make sure she hadn't missed anywhere. What she hadn't expected was what she'd find. Well, she wasn't really sure what it was she had found, but it appeared to be the dark form of a very large shark. Startled, she nearly gasped, jumping up and bounding onto the shore. The last thing she wanted was to be eaten by a territorial shark. Shaken, she grabbed her feathery pelt, aiming to change back into the snowy bird she once was...

    When she heard a growl from the trees behind her. Turning, the blonde found herself face to face with an angry wolf. It was crouched, it's lips curled back and ears flat against it's head. It was about to spring at her, that much was apparent. Frozen in place, the color drained out of the woman's face. There wasn't any time for her to dawn her feathers and escape. That was when the animal attacked. Letting out a terrified shriek, she fell backwards, toppling back into the pool, clutching into the skin of the swan for dear life. She felt like she could cry, for she had a feeling she wasn't going to live for much longer. The woman seemed to be stuck between a shark and a wolf, which followed her right into the water.

    What else was she other than trapped?

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 07:54am
    Not good. the woman had seen him, though the bit of good news seemed to be that she wasn't 100% certain of what she had seen AND that whatever she had thought she'd seen, had frightened her off.....what worried him was the irrefutable fact that humans were curious, violent creatures. she'd probably be back with others to hunt him.....all his hard work. gone.
    Quickly, Mowway gathered together what he'd harvested thus far and perpared to leave the pool, following the stream back to the ocean when two things stopped him. the sound of crashing waters and the smell of blood. A drop, from a mere scratch even was all it would take for him to notice the coppery scent from miles away.

    Thrashing in the shallows was the woman clutching the fine down pelt she had shed earlier, and a wolf. The animal would devour her! Strip her of her cream flesh without any barring form of protection. For all the trouble they were worth, a species that not only seemed devote to the world's ruin but their own, they were so helpless.....against better judgement and without a second thought to it, the sharkman charged the animal, tackling it and restraining it's movement in a vice grip, pulled it under the surface and to the bottom of the pool.

    The animal struggled in a panic, only loosing it's breath quicker as the two tumbled in the water, effectively drowning it's self. or would have, had Mowway not snapped the wolf's neck.
    On the surface, about half way out to the center of the pool, the rising air bubbles caused from the drowning wolf eventually settled, and in their wake bobbed a mass of dark green, under which a pair of earthen brown eyes watched the woman on shore. He wondered if she were injured, but he dared not apporach her.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 08:37am
    If possible, the woman felt even more stunned than she just had been. She had been sure that she would be in the middle of being ripped to shreds by now. On the contrary, she found the wolf was dead and she was shaking, but for the most part unharmed. She sat, staring agape at the pool where the animal's limp body floated...or more accurately, where the eyes behind it peered out at her. Those eyes seemed...very human. It wasn't a shark, was it? Her initial response to this was even more fear than before. Since she was a child she had been warned against trusting or even getting near human males unless she was in the form of a swan. They would steel her feathers and selfishly make her their prisoner without a shed of guilt. But then, she remembered that humans couldn't hold their breath under water for very long. If that was a human, it would have come out a long time ago. Although she was afraid, her dark eyes softened.

    "You saved my life..." Whatever it was down there, she couldn't just leave without giving some sort of thanks, could she? Where would be the manners in that. "Thank you..." Looking down, she grimaced as she saw what had become of her "skin." It was soaked through. "Oh...wonderful." The peculiar, still in shock woman let out a sigh, spreading it out in the sunlight. Now she couldn't leave until it was dry.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 09:00am
    She was gracious, maybe that meant she'd leave in peace and not return with men of her family looking for his flesh. He chose to take it at that value if only because he did not want to loose his pool and all it's prizes to humans. Looking at her, she seemed to be unharmed, so Mowway submerged under the surface, gliding through the waters and returning to his harvest.

    after several minutes and the woman had not left, hadn't even moved from where she sat, he began to grow restless. why hadn't she gone yet? what could she possibly be waiting for? was...was she plotting something? she was a magician after all, and they were untrust worthy even for humans, always after more magic secrets. Mowway looked down at the shimmering pearls he'd gathered, thinking; could he pay her to leave without ordeal? He knew humans did such things, they would offer things of value in order to ask favor, service or protection (usually from the payee) and he knew pearls were also valued among humans as much as they were among his own kind.

    A few more minutes passed before the merman surfaced, head bobbing and eyes staring again. she was still there, almost like she was waiting. "Go home!" a voice from the water called as small round pink and white stones pelted her (pearls on a second look), the small stones had barely stopped falling around her before he again disappeared beneath the pool's glistening surface.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 09:28am
    "Ow!" Okay, so he wasn't friendly. She realized this as very pretty stones hit her in the head. At least, she presumed it was a he after hearing his voice. Saddened and more on alert, she spotted a rather large rock, grabbed her still-wet pelt and darted behind it. The pearls, however, she left where they had fallen. She didn't need them; she wasn't usually in her human form, so wouldn't need money for spending or jewelry. Choking down a nervous lump in her throat, she timidly called out from behind her shelter, "I can't! I don't have any specific home, and besides I can't leave until my feathers dry. I'm sorry for bothering you and trespassing into your territory...I'll leave soon but if you'll just allow me to stay for a little while longer, I won't cause any trouble!"

    He seemed really strong, judging by how he killed that wolf...she really didn't want to mess with him if he wanted her to leave, so she hoped he'd just ignore her for a little while. Besides, she was stark naked. It didn't bother her personally, she was used to it, but she didn't want to risk any humans catching her, and knew it wouldn't be sensible at all to just walk around like that. The woman was already trying to be cautious.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Sun Jun 14, 2009 @ 09:43am
    just below the water's surface he listened to her words, she would leave in peace and without ordeal. but there was something in the words she said...
    "What do you mean?....Magician, I thought you live in great stone castles and command many magicks..." his head broke the surface and looking on shore found that she wasn't were she had been, she'd moved behind a large rock, leaving his pearls among the grass blades where they'd fell. did she not want them? slowly and with caution (fore she was still human, even if only a singel woman) he swam toward the beach. ane the shallower the water got the clearer it was to see him and his long lean tail.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 06:37am
    "Magician?" She repeated, sounding confused. Carefully, she peered over the boulder, taking in a breath as she looked at him. A merman, that suspicion was confirmed as she could now clearly see his tail. As aggressive as he seemed, she couldn't help but feel a bit relieved. She knew mermen were rare, somewhat secretive creatures. She shouldn't have to worry about him trying to capture her. Besides, if he was REALLY violent, he had had his opportunities to kill her already. She might as well reveal her identity. "I'm no magician...I can barely do any magic. I'm a swan, that's all. Or, well, a swan maiden, as I suppose ordinary swans aren't equipped with the ability to turn into a human. My name is Nanette."

    She had to admit, she wasn't quite sure if it was an appropriate time for introductions, but Nanette felt she might as well tack on her name, since she had told him exactly what she was. It only seemed polite.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 07:06am
    She wasn't a magician, she wasn't even human, just wearing a human form. "A swan maiden?" he repeated turning his gaze upon her. He had heard tales of Swan maidens but, he had thought they were found farther up north. at least he had no reason to fear her now knowing what she was, her kind were as hunted as his own by humans.

    "Mowway Sal" the sharkman stated as he reached the edge of the water and started to pull himself onto land and up to the spot where she had been seated before. on land he was slow and at a massive disadvantage, all but completely helpless. and yet dispite that handicap he still came off as intimidating, maybe it was the shark tail that followed behind his torso.
    Laying on his stomach, chest propped up on one elbow, Mowway picked through the blades of grass with his free hand, searching out the lustrous pearls he'd worked so hard to gather and that she seemed uninterested in.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 08:33am
    Watching him cautiously, Nanette finally crawled forward guiltily to help him gather the stones together. She hadn't thought much of them at the time, because she didn't really need them herself, but she was aware that they were very precious, valuable gems. Thinking about it now, she realized that it must have taken him a very long time to collect them all. To just throw them at her...maybe he didn't mean to use them as a projectile weapon, but as some sort of offering? He had thought her a magician, so he must have been threatened. It all made sense now. "I'm sorry, I've just been causing you a whole lot of trouble since I landed, haven't I? I didn't realize that there was a merman living here. If I had...I would have left you to your privacy."

    When she had picked up the remaining pearls that Mowway himself had not grabbed, she smiled at him, holding them out to him so he could add them to the rest. As she did so, however, she couldn't help but flick her eyes down his body. How often was it that one met a merman, human or otherwise? He had a very, very long tail...and he actually did look like some type of shark. Now she didn't feel so ridiculous for confusing him for one.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 09:03am
    "I do not live here, this is my garden. An oracle told me many, many years ago to help the ocean cut into the land and--" His hand paused where it was, a pearl frozen between his finger tips as his eyes shifted on to the woman as she moved out from behind her rock and next to him.
    His earthen eyes continued to follow her as she plucked the small pink orbs out of the grass before finally holding out a double handful of the gems to him. "And dig this pool........Thankyou." Mowway said slowly, finally taking the pearls from her.

    "Your presence did not disturb my privacy, I would have ignored and avoided you. your actions are what I could not ignore.Though you are not all to blame..." Mowway spoke as he formed a mound in front of him out of the pearls, once the pearls were carefully placed he looked up at her again. "The wolf. I assumed you had not been unjured after I saw no visible signs....are you?"

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 09:33am
    "Oh, I'm fine, but thank you for your concern. I got a small scratch, I think, but the wolf missed me when I fell back into the pool..." Listening to what he said, Nanette trailed off and couldn't help but ask curiously, "a garden? What could you possibly grow underwater?" She didn't mean it to be rude, certainly not. It was just that the maiden hadn't heard of gardens being below water before, always above, where they could get plenty of sunlight. It seemed to her that anything other than seaweed and coral would perish. She was curious to know what Mowway was planning on growing in the nearby pool.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 10:01am
    He stared at her, no, it was more a glare. What could possibly you grow underwater?! he had put years into making this pool fertile, and even helped birth it! "Various types of Seaweed, Corals, sea flowers and..." he picked up a singel pearl from the top of the mound, rolling it between his fingers a moment before shouting "PEARLS!" and threw the tiny orb at her.

    "More then Half of the world is covered in water! Rains prompt growth in the harshest of lands! There is more life in a singel reef then most of the dry land combined!" He lectured, throwing the pearls one at a time at her all the while. "Why should it be impossible to grow a garden in the very essence of life?! why should the oceans seem desolate?! You silly, stupid...BIRD! I would not bother with a garden if I could not grow life in it!" He grabbed up the remain pearls he hadnt thrown at her and as quickly as his lumbering body would allow him, turned himself around and started to drag himself back toward the water.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 10:23am
    Every single word the furious merman shouted at Nanette burned into her like a hot iron. Instinctively, she threw up her hands to guard her face as she found herself pelted with the hard stones once more, the damage feeling much worse thanks to their close proximity. Then, when his final word had been said, finishing his insult, she burst into tears as if it were rehearsed. "WAIT!" She shouted in her sobs, "Wait! Wait! Please! I am sorry! I am really, truly, utterly sorry! I-I didn't mean to offend you! In no means was that my intent! I-It's true! I'm foolish, and stupid, and I don't know anything! You have all the right to be upset with me, really! The nonsense I prattle out...I shouldn't be allowed to speak! Please, I beg you, forgive me! Please..."

    Saying she felt terrible was an understatement. This was the first non-swan she had talked to in a good long time, and it seemed the friendship she had started to make she had simultaneously destroyed with a single question. How rude she was, talking in such a way to someone who had saved her life...

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 10:43am
    "Pffft." the merman hissed irritably, not having the patience to deal with the woman's blubbering and made for the water, when he stopped. She was standing off to the side of him and would have been happy to ignore her, had he not caught a glint of something shinning on her cheeks. He turned, awe in his gaze as he slowly crawled toward her. there before her, at her feet, Mowway reached up and clasped his hand around her arm just above her elbow, the grip surprisingly gentle and even considerate as he slowly pulled her down to his level.

    His eyes never faultered from the glistening beads on her cheeks, and once on his level he removed his hand from around her arm and moved his fingers across her cheek in a light caress. His fingers stealing the tear from it's path down her face, the merman examined the liquid pearl for a moment before then popping his finger into his mouth. "Salt" he said quietly "Swans cry pearls from the sea, fragile as the placidity of a garden pool..."

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 08:04pm
    Feeling the clammy touch of his webbed fingers wrap around her arm, Nanette took in a sharp breath, her sobbing quickly changing to silent tears due to her fright. He had startled her, regardless of the fact that his touch was gentle, and thus consented to his movements. As he pulled her down the swan stooped down so she was back on his level, watching him nervously, not daring to make a movement other than shiver lightly as his hand glided across her cheek, collecting her tears.

    "S-sorry...I'm just really sensitive..." Nanette whispered quietly, mostly to herself. Quite frankly, she wasn't really sure how to react to what just happened. One moment he had been angry at her, and now he almost seemed...curious. Fascinated, even. She couldn't see what was so unusual about her tears. After all, she cried all the time. It often aggravated her family.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 08:25pm
    He looked up at her again, unsure about what to do. His anger and annoyance with her was quickly fading, but that didn't mean he liked the swan, he was still waiting to be rid of her. "...aren't your feathers dry by now?" he said said dryly as he turned himself back toward the water again and this time, did not stop. Disappearing beneath the surface and from the pool.

    It had been maybe a little more then a week now since he had first encountered the swan maiden and three of those days he had noticed her there and had affectively ignored her. busying himself with collecting his ingredients. And yet, the next day he found himself returning to his pool dispite the end of the harvest and swimming along the shore. She was there again. "Why do you remain?" He asked her, his eyes watching her from above the water. "You are alone, no other swans nest nor bathe here, so why do you keep coming back?"

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 09:26pm
    Nanette was singing to herself, feet dangling in the pool and leaning back on her hands when the merman addressed her. Immediately, she stopped singing, and for a moment she almost seemed dumbfounded as to what he meant by the question. "It's nice here," she told him simply, "and it can get incredibly dull sometimes, spending time with the same group of people that you've known all of your life, every single day. It can be nice to broaden my horizons..." Pausing, a slight hint of worry etched into her voice as she asked, "does my presence here bother you?" It was his pool, after all. An oracle had told him to make it. Regardless of the fact she was trying to pretend nothing had happened when she had first met him, Nanette still did remember how angry he had become. If he wanted her gone, she knew it would be wise to obey such a request.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Mon Jun 15, 2009 @ 09:37pm
    Mowway came into the shallows to speak without strain, but he did not dare beach himself again. "You are a creature of the sky, your world is nothing but horizon." And there behind his words, was the slightest inkling of humor, though it did not seem to stay long. "Why do you keep asking me this? I have told you this before, it is not your presence that bothers me...is your presence a bother to your kin?"

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 12:41am
    Nanette laughed. "Sorry, sorry, I'm just cautious. I like to double check...just to be safe. I don't believe I'm a bother to my family...I'm sure they become weary of me every now and then (although I have to admit more than the others), but that's only to be expected, isn't it?" You could love someone more than life itself, but that didn't mean you were never going to fight, disagree, and get annoyed with one another. She was definitely no exception to this.

    At that moment, she figured it would be best to ask him some sort of question about the garden and whatever it was he was growing. But then, she didn't want their currently pleasant conversation to turn sour, so she decided to refrain from this action.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 01:27am
    She stayed all season and Mowway found himself visiting her there at the garden pool, Their pool as he'd started to think of it thus. And while he did not always get the little swan (she sobbed at the smallest of misunderstandings; the tears, while fascinating to him, the sounds that accompanied them, weren't), but the merman enjoyed the company, her company.

    One day though, at the end of the season, her tears were no longer fascinating over the words she spoke to him "I'm leaving, I have to go back..."

    "Back?..." It wasn't a real question, he knew what she meant. Birds migrated and she was a swan. The sharkman simply found himself unable (or unwilling) to cope or express his own emotions that her news warranted...hollowly were his good byes and for the first time in his life, the merman did not couple in the courting games. The season passed with Mowway learning as much as he could about Swan Maidens and pacing the gardening pool.

    The harvesting season came again and she did return as she had said, but all too soon the season seemed to go and for the second time, Mowway would have to say goodbye to his lovely friend....if he did not stop her that was. While she was resting, Mowway stole away her feathers, wrapping them in a special seaweed that would keep the soft down dry and then hid it where she could not reach it...she would stay.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 09:08am
    It was a comfortable temperature. Nanette knew her time to spend with the merman was coming to an end once again, and as such she had planned to make as much of it count as possible. However, as she was lounging on her stomach on the soft, grassy loam, as at ease as she could be, she soon found her eyes drooping, a smile still on her face. It was when the sun was just beginning to make it's descent, the air turning from neutral to cool, that Nanette awoke, rubbing her eyes as she sat up.

    "Oh! I can't believe I dozed off..." Looking about her, she took notice of the sky and sighed, looking over at Mowway from his spot in the pool. "It's starting to get late...I suppose I should leave for the night." So she stood, and turning, walked over to where she had left her feathers...only to freeze in complete and utter terror. Stricken with panic, Nanette gasped, scanning the ground to make sure she hadn't only just missed it. Her pelt, he precious swan skin, was nowhere to be found.

    "M-M-Mowway! Mowway! My feathers! They were here, right here! Oh no oh no oh no...where are they?" The last part, she murmured more to herself than anyone else, beginning to dart about, hoping that somehow she had just put them in a different spot than usual and not remembered. This was bad. How was she going to return to her flock?

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 09:26am
    The sun was getting low in the sky, She would be waking up soon and Mowway knew she would be upset. her feathers were the most valuable thing she had. but he would make her understand. reassure her that her pelt was safe. "M-M-Mowway! Mowway!" he turned, following her voice when she called his name frantic. He watched her for a moment as she searched the beach in a panic before finding his voice. "I know. ...I have them."

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 09:36am
    The calm that settled over the clearing was tense. "...what?" she questioned in a small voice, turning back to him. Almost immediately Nanette was back to the edge of the pool again, on her hands and knees so she could look him right in the eyes. "Why? Why would you take them? Mowway, I-I need them! Give them back to me!" Her voice wavered as she said this, as well as rose, but this time she didn't cry like usual. Rather, she sounded angry. Angry, shocked, and most importantly, hurt. Why would he steal the one possession she had that she really needed? She didn't, couldn't understand. It was her one way ticket to her family.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 09:44am
    He met her gaze steadily as she questioned him on his level and watched her as she rose again. "I will not." Mowway stated after a pause. "...The season is over and you would have-- I do not want you to leave, Nanette!" He spoke honestly and with conviction. "The season of your absence was..." he closed his eyes, remembering the days he had missed her and seemed to be searching for a word to describ it. "...a season of grey and longing." a season he did not want to experience again, and would not experience again.

    "Your feathers are safe, Nanette. I know they are dear to you, I would not let harm befall them." Mowway assured her. pushing himself up on his arms so he was not so completely at her feet, he wanted to see her face clearly.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 10:04am
    A small whimper escaped from between her lips as she listened to what he had to say. It was sweet that he enjoyed her company...but the facts were that he was a merman, and she was a swan. She couldn't stay with him all the time. Nanette felt limp. It was as if something had been drained out of her, replaced only with a compelling, undeniable urge. It told her to stay.

    "You want me to stay..." she found herself saying, unable to look directly at him. Turning away, she approached the very rock she had once used as a shelter from flying pearls and sat, her back flat against it. "I will stay, then." Those were his orders. He had her feathers; there was nothing she could do about it. Shaking with emotion, Nanette found it hard not to put her head in her hands and just cry. But then, she didn't feel like crying. She felt like being angry. She felt like screaming.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Tue Jun 16, 2009 @ 10:13am
    "Yes." Mowway confirmed, still watching her as she turned her back on him and sat, back against the boulder."...Nanette." He called her after a time, she was neither looking nor talking to him. "Nanette?" he tried again, still to no avail. Why was she not speaking to him? Why would she not look at him? He had told her, her feathers were safe! why was she pouting like this? Did...did she NOT want to stay with him? Anger rose in the sharkman, he cared for her, she was his friend and all he wanted was to be with her! and she didn't.

    "Your feathers are all that are on your mind? I told you they were safe! Do you not trust me with your treasure? or is it that you do not wish to stay with me?!" Memories of a pink haired mermaid whom he had been in love with surfaced, along with the memories of his rejection. and his anger perked. "Stupid BIRD!" Mowway shouted, picking up a pebble and throwing it at her.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Wed Jun 17, 2009 @ 09:40am
    Nanette snapped. "YES!" She screamed, "I AM a stupid bird! But I would rather be a stupid bird then a clueless, brainless fish!" Unable to contain herself, she grabbed the pebble that had collided with her forehead and threw it right back at him. "You are my friend, Mowway! I would love to stay here with you, but it's not something I can easily do! Forcing me to do so is wrong and...and selfish! I do trust that you put my feathers in a very safe place, so NO, I am not worried about them! They are the least of what is on my mind right now!" Didn't he know anything? She had a family! She had a flock waiting for her, and the fact of the matter was, being what they were, if she didn't go back to them before it was time for them to migrate, they would leave her, assuming she had been stolen away by some man. They would be right, in a sense, and who knows how long it would take for her to find them again.

    Nanette huffed, her anger quickly fading once more to sorrow. What if she really was left all alone? It was all so unfair. She felt as if her trust had been betrayed. Her voice wavering with emotion once more, she assured, "it has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with not wanting to stay with you. I can promise you that much."

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Wed Jun 17, 2009 @ 09:50am
    "I have just made it easy for you!" He shouted, angry and frustrated. He'd flinched when the pebble hit the ground, just barely missing him. She wanted to stay with him, she trusted him with her feathers, and yet she was still sulking!!
    Mowway fumed for a moment before dragging himself a few feet onto shore.
    "I was selfish...but how can it be wrong when you wish for it as well?" she had said it twice, reassuring him with her word...so why? was it her family? if that was the case then... "You once told me you wanted to---broaden your horizons." He stretched out on the grass, arms out toward her. "stay with me Nanette."

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Wed Jun 17, 2009 @ 11:53pm
    Watching him, she couldn't help her face from softening. He really didn't mean any harm to her by his actions, she could see this. Mowway probably didn't realize, didn't understand, the pain this was causing her heart. "Oh, Mowway..." She sighed, unsure what to do, what to say. At first, Nanette resisted his call, tried to ignore his arms stretched toward her in longing. However, it was as if a rope had been tied around her, and the harder she tried to fight against the pull, the harder she would be tugged toward him.

    Before long, she gave in, realizing this was something she couldn't win. Nanette went to him, in his arms.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Thu Jun 18, 2009 @ 12:09am
    He had expected---had hoped that she would take his hands at the very least, but she had come into his arms, sitting right next to him. And Mowway simply watched her, his eyes not once leaving her face. Her eyes were sympathetic towards him...but there was also something there he didn't know.
    Whatever it was, it didn't matter at that moment. She was in his arms and her human flesh warm to the touch and her scent was that of a summer breeze, of fruit blossoms and mountain springs. of all the places her wings had carried her.
    "Thankyou..." The merman lowered his head, resting it in her lap and if not for the fact that his eyes were open, he could have been asleep. her skin was warm, reminding him of the summer sun.....he had stolen summer, and he would not grieve for the rest of the world in their winter without her.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Thu Jun 18, 2009 @ 05:36am
    They stayed there until the sun set, and darkness spread across the land. There was no light but that of the moonlight, and looking down, she couldn't help but notice he had actually fallen asleep in his comfort. It figured. Of course he was happy. He had gotten what he wanted, even if it had been at her expense. Nanette glowered for a moment, anger smoldering within her yet again. But...he looked so very peaceful...she sighed, unable to keep that hateful expression on her face.

    Soon, she found herself falling asleep as well, however hard it was, with nothing to keep her warm. Arms drooping, she shivered, hugging herself and rubbing her arms, until finally, her cold body gave into the need for rest. Overall, when the sun finally came up the next morning, she hadn't gotten very much of it. When she woke up, Nanette was going to be tired and probably cranky as well.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Thu Jun 18, 2009 @ 05:58am
    Dawn came and with it sounds that woke Mowway with a start, they were the normal sounds of the earth waking but so foreign to the merman. He felt stiff and his skin had also dried during the night, causing him to ache as he moved. Slightly disorientated by the strange surroundings but as he looked down at Nanette everything came back, along with something new.
    guilt panged him as he looked at her shivering body, her lips held a blue hue and there, in the corners of her eyes and clinging to her thick lashes were tears, and as he watched her sleep those pooled tears fell, rolling into the grass.

    Carefully, Mowway backed away from the sleeping woman and into the cool, refreshing water. One thought on his mind: Without her feathers, he would need to care and provide for her.....
    Later that morning as Nanetter awoke, she would find herself alone and on the shore not far from where she slept, laid out on kelp was roe, tubers and fish.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Thu Jun 18, 2009 @ 06:55am
    Her eyes fluttering open, heavy with dried tears, Nanette sat up and wiped them clean before she noticed the food laying out before her. Stiff and cool to the touch, the swan was upset enough to contemplate ignoring the offering. However, her stomach sharply reprimanded her for such thoughts with a growl, reminding herself that starvation would accomplish nothing. She grumbled, looking around for Mowway, and when she found him nowhere in sight, hesitantly began to nibble upon the fish. In truth, they tasted better when she was a bird, but she would manage.

    Luckily, the sun was rising, and soon she'd warm up. Nanette could already feel the effects of the shining rays. She did wonder where Mowway had gone off to, however. Maybe he was gathering his own breakfast. She had to admit, she was glad she didn't have to scorn him the moment she awoke.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Thu Jun 18, 2009 @ 07:12am
    Mowway was cautious as he came into the pool, keeping his distance so as to not disturb her. Was she still angry with him? Slowly the merman approached the far shore where she was, Dorsal fins skimming the surface as he swam beneath the water.
    Dragging his torso onto shore, a bundle under one arm. "Nanette?" Mowway called softly. "I..." He wanted to say something about last night...his thoughtlessness could have frozen her had the weather not been as clear as it had been. But words just didn't seem appropriate.

    "I got you this." He took the bundle out from under his arm, blue fabric showing as he unwrapped the kelp. The kelp had managed to keep the fabric dry but the blanket wasn't in the best condition to begin with, it had probably been forgotten and left outside (explaining how Mowway had gotten a hold of it). but it would keep her warm at least.
    Once the parcel was unwrapped Mowway backed back into the water. He couldn't keep her warm, he didn't even know how to make fire, so the blanket would have to do what he could not.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 07:11am
    Nanette's first reaction to hearing her name called was to stiffen, a still displeased look on her face. By the time he had arrived, she had finished eating, and so her hands were free to clench into fists at her side. However, when he mentioned he had brought something, she couldn't help but look his way, curious if nothing else. That was when he revealed what the package contained, and she smiled, touched. "Oh, Mowway...that's...that's sweet...thank you." Accepting the blanket, she wrapped it around her shoulders, regardless of it's tattered condition. He must have worked hard to get this for her, and it showed that he must have noticed how cold she had been that night, and been concerned for her.

    "You're really trying very hard..." Nanette realized out loud as she watched him slink back into the pool. Was she being unfair too him? Was she being too cruel? Desperately, the swan wanted to tell him how wonderful he was being with all of those considerations, but swallowed her words with some difficulty. It didn't change the fact that he couldn't just keep her here. She wasn't his pet. The silence getting to her, Nanette finally asked tentatively, "did you...sleep well?"

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 07:39am
    His hopes raised as she thanked him, acknowledging his gift. But her words following as she asked about him told him she was still pouting. At least for a moment after the gift, she had seemed happier. "Yes." He returned flatly but as he spoke of her, his words warmed. "The morning was strange but...your lap was sunshine and it comforted me in the strangeness....I'm sorry that you were cold. you will sleep better now."

    There was a short pause where he waited restlessly before he noticed that the food he'd left for her was gone. she had eaten it, this was good. "I will go and bring you something to eat." Mowway announced as he started to swam farther out into the pool.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 07:59am
    Sunshine. He said her lap was sunshine. Nanette figured it was probably just the verse talking...but she couldn't help but feel flattered, a warm blush rising to her cheeks. She smiled brightly, but lowered her head to look at her lap, trying to hide it. She wasn't very good at driving the point home that she was upset.

    When he declared he'd bring her more food, she looked up, almost letting out a small laugh. "Ah--wait!" Nanette called after him, "You don't have to bring me anything right now...I just ate so I'm not very hungry...but I appreciate the sentiment. What about you? Have you eaten yet? If you haven't you should get something for yourself. I'd hate to think I'm distracting you from your own needs..." If that was the case, the swan would feel horribly guilty. Yes, she was upset with him, but that didn't mean he should starve! That would be terrible, not to mention all her fault! Nanette's face went pale at the thought of this.

    With words laced with genuine concern, she added in a distraught voice, "D-Don't strain yourself, okay?"

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 08:10am
    He hadn't gotten very far when she called him to wait, and turning in the water, he looked back at her with slight confusion. an expression that quickly gave away to a smile and even a softly breathed chuckle. "I will not strain myself, and yes! I have already eaten." twice actually, when he had caught her her own breakfast and while he was hunting alone the distant shores for the blanket now wrapped around her shoulders.
    "But I should still go, it may take be a while to gather a meal.......but if you wish, I would gladly wait Nanette." He smiled swimming a few feet back to shore as he waited for her reply, and to also see the colors change on her face clearer.
    There was also something else he wanted to get for her while he was hunting, but he did not tell her this. it would be a surprise.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 08:31am
    How was he doing that? His voice, his words...the little way he smiled when he came toward her...it would be so easy to just forget all of her anger and frustrations. Nanette sighed, a mixture of a dreamy and weary breath, falling on her back. "Would you like to sing something with me?" She asked him, turning so she was on her side, facing him. Blinking, she rethought her words, trying to sound more commanding. "Er...I mean...can you sing? No...no, that isn't right. I mean...I mean you should sing something!"

    Nanette looked horribly embarrassed, and rolled on her other side so she was looking away from him. "Oh...never mind, Mowway. If you think you should go out now, then you don't need to wait. You don't have to sing either. I-I'm being silly, I don't even know what I'm saying...that probably didn't even make any sense." She knew she was emotionally sensitive but this gigantic roller coaster of feelings felt like much, even for her. "I guess I really am just a stupid, foolish little bird..." she sighed to herself, a little disheartened.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 08:59am
    "...Sing?" Mowway stopped in the water, repeating the word to himself. He should sing something? "I don't...know how well I could sing...it is usually the maidens of the waves that sing, mermaids. Mermen, we...we use words, verse....I..." It was true, a poem he could recite, but a song? The most singing he'd ever done was under his breath as he swam the ocean alone. and he sounded unsure and even nervous. He had heard the swan sing before...if he were to sing with her, or even without her he would surely maim the delicate cords...but as he saw her turn away and slip into a nameless sarrow he quickly made up his mind.

    "No! No...no Nanette." Mowway said as he made for the shore and carefully pulled himself up onto the smooth stones of the beach. "You are not silly and you know what you say." She was saying she wanted to hear him sing. There was a long pause as he watched her back, getting up the courage to sing, of all things...and slowly he started, the sound growing gradually...

    "Quando sono solo
    Sogno allorizzonte
    E mancan le parole
    Si lo so che non c? luce
    In una stanza quando manca il sole
    Se non ci sei tu con me, con me
    Su le finestre
    Mostra a tutti il mio cuore
    Che hai accesso
    Chiudi dentro me
    La luce
    Che hai incontrato per strada.

    "Con te partiro
    Paesi che non ho mai
    Veduto e vissuto con te
    Adesso si li vivr?
    Con te partiro...."

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 09:39am
    He had sounded so nervous, so unsure of himself, that quite frankly Nanette was surprised when he actually began to sing. His voice...was beautiful. She closed her eyes, a smile spreading across her face. The swan would have turned to look at him, but she didn't want to interrupt, since he had started out so unsure of himself and finally gotten into it. She waited until he was completely finished to roll back to look at him, reaching a hand out to find his. "Mowway," she told him softly, "thank you for giving me the pleasure of hearing you sing." If she was telling the truth, Nanette would have to admit that she really hadn't understood a word of what he had sang to her, but she really didn't need to. The foreign lyrics were full of enough emotion to present a perfect picture.

    She squeezed his hand gently, and didn't want to let go.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Fri Jun 19, 2009 @ 10:04am
    It had been weeks, a little over a month perhaps, since Mowway had taken Nanette's feathers. There had been a small disagreement or two when tensions between them were high, but over all Mowway thought their time with each other had been just like any other time they'd spent together. They shared stories of their own worlds, his the oceans and her the sky and it's many horizons, he recited poetry for her and she sang, him even accompaning her on occasion.
    And almost every day the sharkman brought something new to the pool to show or give to her; sunken treasure, polished stones, exquisite shells and at times, bottled Sea flowers or small colorful fish (the fish released at the end of the day). Today Mowway had something different, a gift that he had been working on for nearly a year. It took so long because of the great care he took in finding and choosing the perfect material and then fashioning the design.

    "Nanette!" the Merman called her name excitedly as he swam into the pool and into the shallows, his right hand clenched to his chest. "I've finished it" He smiled widely, his pointed teeth showing. He knew she didn't know what he was talking about, he'd never told her but he couldn't contain it.
    "I...This is for you." He brought his hand out from beneath him, and even before his hand broke the surface, the luster of the object he held shinned. There sitting in his open palm was a hair comb, it's teeth made from white coral, the face made from sea shell and inset with a mosaic made of pearls and smaller stones, detailed to look like waves or air currents interchangeably. "...It's for your hair."

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sat Jun 20, 2009 @ 05:45am
    Nanette had been singing, amusing herself by twirling a long blade of grass in between her fingers as she did so, just biding time until the merman returned. The anger she felt toward him had long since passed. Now, she just enjoyed the time she was able to spend with him. Sure, occasionally they'd have a bit of a fight, but they could rarely stay mad at each other for long anymore. They were very good friends after all, and Nanette didn't wish to anger her best friend.

    That was when she heard him call out her name, and stopped her simple amusement to sit up and look at him, confused. "Mowway? What's finished? What are you talking ab--" cutting herself off, the swan maiden gasped as she was handed the precious gift. It was beautiful...the most beautiful thing that she had ever seen. A smile plastered widely across her face, Nanette felt tears form at her lashes just looking at it. "Oh Mowway...it's beautiful, no, gorgeous! Breathtaking! Oh, I love...I love it..." Her voice became quiet as she said the last part, gazing at the comb and brushing it gently with her fingertips.

    What was it she loved, exactly?

    Snapping her head up to look at him, she gasped again, the force of an epiphany crashing down on her. Eyes wide and still brimming with happy tears, she carefully placed the extraordinary device down next to her before exclaiming his name. "Mowway!" she cried, lunging at him with barely any warning, wrapping her arms around him and joining him in the pool. Leaning her forehead against his watery chest, she confessed, "I love you!" Then, more gently and sincere, "I...I-I love you." Why had it taken her so long to realize this? Hadn't she known? Deep down, hadn't she really known that he was more than just a friend to her? Nanette could have laughed, she could be so hopeless.

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Sat Jun 20, 2009 @ 06:07am
    Her expression was better then he imagined it, how it turned from confused into sheer astonishment and quiet adoration. All his effort was for this, to see her face light up in so many ways. ...what he didn't expect was that she'd throw herself at him. Instinctively he stiffened, bracing himself for the assult. A small piece of him even wanting to flee.
    But as she fell into his arms, it all melted away and was forgotten. Her head on his chest, warm arms surrounding him and her soft body close to his. It was all wonderful but it was the words the struck him. "I love you." she had said.

    Mowway wrapped his arms around her, the soft smile on his face spreading as 'it' sunk in. She loved him. "I love you...so~ much." He squeezed her gently before he took his hands and ran them up her back, over her shoulders and then ran his webbed fingers through her silken hair. Gently lifting her head, Mowway bowing his own and bringing their lips together.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sat Jun 20, 2009 @ 08:35am
    Nanette couldn't remember ever being this happy. She loved him and he loved her in return. They could stay together, love each other, just like this. What else did she need? Their lips together, the swan pressed into him, relishing his every touch. It felt...it felt...well actually the feeling of it all was overrode by the taste. Mowway didn't taste as...pleasant as she'd always imagined her first kiss to be. Actually, he tasted very strongly of fish. Of course, what was she supposed to have expected? He was a fish.

    Regardless of this knowledge, she couldn't help herself from gently separating herself from him, face flushed and slightly out of breath as she told him in a somewhat teasing manner, "you...taste like fish."

    comment Icy Sapphire · Community Member · Sat Jun 20, 2009 @ 08:51am
    Mowway looked confused when she had pulled away and teased him about tasting like fish. He never noticed it himself of course and to him, her lips had been soft and warm (even hot) as he kissed her. It had been strange and wonderful...but still strange.
    "And you taste like fowl." He smiled, chuckling softly and showing off his pointed teeth. "....I'm perfectly fine with it if you are." he proposed, caressing her face with his thumbs, his fingers still entangled among her sunshine hair.

    comment OhKey_WeeHow · Community Member · Sat Jun 27, 2009 @ 10:59pm
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