Eleanor - Chapter 12
Time seemed to drag slowly as she waited for the Seraph to arrive and she wasn't too sure what to expect. She sat and mentally noted all that she had learned from Mr Constavalos.
Angels exist, true!
Vampires are false!
Her mother has been kidnapped to be experimented on. True. And with this she had an image of her mother with a gigantic ear growing on her back. Well that's what they do don't they? She rubbed her eyes to try and push the image out of her head.
She was a mermaid, she wasn't convinced on that one yet.
Magic exists, true!
How had she managed to stop that tea from hitting her in the face? Some form of magic must exist.
Does that mean his tarot reading was true and what had she seen in that paperweight, or crystal ball as she had now come to realise. She paced the room back and forth sure that she must be wearing a path on the floor boards.
'I’m a mermaid' she said more to herself. 'A bloody fish' no he was wrong she couldn't be.
'I'm a mermaid' she said again with more force, this time directed at the old man who sat in an armchair watching her.
He didn't respond but again nodded at her.
That was too much and she exploded.
'I a fucking Disney princess. And you’re telling me that Jacob black is running around out there and I can stop bloody water.'
'I don't know what this Jacob black means, but yes you are a mermaid. And the little mermaid is a part biographical story child.'
She stopped in her tracks and stared at him in awe. He smiled at her and began to explain.
'In his younger days Hans Christian Anderson suffered from such terrible depression. On day whilst walking the cliffs of his home he was contemplating suicide but fell into the sea, poor man, He was ready to throw himself off but couldn't bring himself to do it. Whilst in the bitter water he was saved and found himself on dry land with a beautiful woman standing over him. From that day he was besotted with the woman and met her regularly. Being the time it was he had to pretend to find other lovers, men and woman but he could never compare to her.
'If that's true, why did no one else know that mermaids existed.'
'Ah Paidi mou, I have no doubt they did! And he did try to tell people. He had to share his news with others but most believed him mad but he did find friendship in another writer. He came to England and met with William Shakespeare.
Eleanor interrupted him, 'come on now, werewolves mermaids and now William Shakespeare.'
He stared at her in desperation and continued.
'He spent many months at Shakespeare's home and tried to make him believe. But Shakespeare himself had met with the fae folk and not wanting to share his own secret banished Anderson from his home and the two never spoke again.
A fresh wave of wonderment washed over her. The little mermaid was true she thought to herself. She could see the part where the handsome prince fell into the water and Ariel saved him. But he was saying Shakespeare know of the magical world too. Was a Midsummer night’s dream real? She sat back in the arm chair, head in her hands.
'What I still don't get is why I don't have a tale or at least scales?'
My child, mermaids do not have tails, you do however have scales if you wish to have them. There is no need to visit a sea witch' he chuckled to himself, 'however they too exist. Simply submerge yourself in salt water and your legs transform. Think of them as a kind of scaly wet suit child'
‘Scales' she quickly blurted out.
'You will always have scales but your mother asked me to shield your mind so that you wouldn't see in the shower and such’
Her mind boggled. 'If I do have scales, why can no one else see them?'
'That is a little magic on my behalf. Most humans do not see what they don’t want to but I placed a shield charm around you child. Now that you know the truth you will be able to see.'
She looked down at her legs. Her denim jeans still a little damp from the tea that was thrown at her.
She held onto the right trouser leg and took a deep breath lifting the fabric. She leg out an audible gasp. Beneath the material, and catching the light from the window. Her leg was covered in scales. Each about the size of a 5 pence piece and each radiating the most beautiful colours. Deep greens, luminescent blues, magnificent purples. Her leg looked like an oil slick on a wet pavement. Above all else this convinced her that the old man told the truth.
He looked at her and chuckled. 'Maybe I should have told you that first little Paidi mou, saved me a lot of hassle.'
She stared from him to her leg. Their eyes locked and she understood he spoke the truth. The gaze only broke when a small knock at the door shattered the silence.
Her gaze flickered to the door and back to Mr Constavalos. Was she about to meet a real life angel? Could it really be true too?
Mr Constavalos looked at her. 'Understand this now child, she means you no harm, she is on the side of good, but do not anger her.'
Eleanor looked at him, she's an angel how could she get angry?
He limped to the door and pulled it open.
Eleanor expected a bright shining light, flowing white robes and maybe a harp but none of the sort stood on the other side.
'Astrid, my dear.' He flung his arms out in a wide embrace and drew the least angelic looking person into his arms.
She had thick black tattoos up each of her arms and Eleanor couldn't see where either one ended. Only that they seemed to creep out of the neckline of her black faded Ramones T-shirt. She had soft dark hair that was highlighted with striking blue streaks it fell over her shoulders in thick waves. Silver glinted from her lip and eyebrow and her thick black boots echoed on the wooden floor. She looked like the kind of person Eleanor and her mother would cross the street to avoid.
And there it was the heavy stab of pain at the thought of her mother. Had it only been a few hours ago they were sitting in the front room, faces plastered in pink mush. It was all too much. She needed her mother. She should be the one telling her all this and not some old neighbour. She longed to feel her mother’s arms around her explains these things to her and she could imagine the feel of her hand brushing through her hair whilst she explained. She gulped down hard barley listening to the conversation going on around her.
'Eleanor are you even listening to me' the sweet female voice called to her.
The pictures on the wall began to shake.
'She’s in shock Astrid dear, her mother was taken, she's new to all this.'
'Be that as it may Pan, she needs to know the truth.'
Pan, who's Pan Eleanor thought to herself before realising she meant Mr Constavalos. She knew he was foreign but Pan was such strange name. Then she realised she had heard it before. Hercules, the little goat man. Jesus, she knew Pocahontas was based on a true story but where all Disney film biographies?
'I’m sorry' she found herself muttering and stared at the woman's face.
Despite the tattoos which wound their way up her neck. Black tribal patterns, flowers and strange symbols, her face was delicately beautiful. Like the painting in books and galleries. But then again she supposed, if she was an angel she guessed she would be beautiful. No beautiful was the wrong word for her. Her face was striking in a take your breath away kind of way. She couldn't stop staring. Her eyes where such a bright shade of blue she couldn't stop looking. A thousand shades of blues, greys and greens reflected back at her from those breath-taking eyes. The soft curl of her lip mesmerised Eleanor. From somewhere in the distance she could her Mr Constavalos laughing.
'To stare into the face of an angel' he laughed. 'Give her a moment it will wear off.
Eleanor shuck her head realising she had been staring at the woman for a lot longer than would be considered polite and she found herself attempting to apologise to the woman but she couldn't form any words.
Astrids face fell into an easy smile.' I stay out of view most of the time I have forgotten what people's reactions looked like. The tattoos, piercing and clothes keep most people away, but these days tattoos are the normal.' The tattooed woman's voice came back softer.
'Eleanor, things have been set into motion and it's very important that you listen to me ok.'
Eleanor nodded having found that she couldn't speak. She just opened and closed her mouth like a gold fish.
'Don't worry child your voice will return soon, just a side effect of my presence, pheromones I believe' she smiled at Eleanor. 'It’s one of the side effects go my species. Along with a few other tricks, and a wicked grin flashed across her radiant face turning it somewhat sinister.
'W w what's been set in motion' Eleanor asked finding her voice.
'It seems the Directive are back and looking for the Zodiacs again.'
Processing this piece of information with everything else that had gone on pushed her mind into overload.
'The Zodiacs' Eleanor questioned. 'You mean like the horoscopes in the paper.' She wasn't sure she understood, but that was the only thing she could bring herself to say. What else could she mean by the Zodiacs, either horoscopes or some indie band maybe but considering all she had been told she felt that was very unlikely?
'Yes child' Astrid replied staring into Eleanor's own green eyes. Your mother is Pieces, the 12th zodiac.
'She’s what, he said she's a mermaid' Eleanor pointed a shaking finger at Mr Constavalos.
Astrid swung to look at him, 'bloody hell Pan, that's all she needs more confusing information. I bet you told her Jacob Blacks real too.'
'I don't know who this Jacob Black is that you refer to, is he foreign.'
Astrid laughed at him. 'Old man' she snorted.
She turned back to Eleanor and her face fell into a serious expression. 'Ignore what Pan has told you for the moment, there is something more that you need to understand first, something that underlies all what he has told you. There is a lot more to it that mermaids, werewolves and angels.