Found and Hunted
The flight back to Japan was not one they had planned, but as if having met Ciel’s current self, Pearl trusted that Missy would be alright. Her heart starting to remember things she did not know she knew. And even an inkling of how Gaia was able to safe Naiad by breaking the curse so that she could go home.
He watched as Gaia drowned, a Human who didn’t have the magic needed to live in the sea, but knowing the pain of being separated from one’s true love and then having lived so long believing she was dead… He couldn’t let this girl lose the one person who loved her enough to die to safe her. Giving up his magic and his own life to Shana, his daughter; the Nymph gave life back to Gaia just as he breathed his own last breath. His spirit was briefly able to meet with Mer and Terre’s own before passing on to become the wind, the air and the sky; the seasons and weather to bring them together.
The curse, it was one to imprison someone loved and desired, to take what doesn’t belong to them. But if the capturer was to give their live for the one they loved then the curse is broken and the person can return to their home and to the ones they love… Naiad returned that love for Gaia, and they were able to save each other…
The earth trembled and the skies shattered the sea breaking. The world’s balance has finally been tilted as the last pure magic vanished, Ciel’s magic.
Shana gathered the magic of everything and divided it equally to create balance amongst the animals, the trees, the flowers, the sky, the sea the fish and the birds, even between the Humans and Undine, but no matter how hard she tried to balance out all the unjust that had caused the world to nearly be destroyed, but the evil that was within the fiery light of the Basks, the mutated forms of Lilith and Sol, were too strong to take and divide.
Fire… Fire suddenly blazed all around her.
“So. My half-sister finally decides to make her move. I will get my hands on Naiad one way or another! Our fire will burn everything down and we’ll rule over the new world that will be shaped in our image!”
“Lilith! You won’t get away with this! Naiad may be week now, that does not mean she’ll remain so! She’ll live happily now with her family, and her bloodline will grow. Someday someone will be born that can stop you and Sol. Your flames will only give that person the strength needed to do so!” Shana proclaimed as her magic helped her stand on the water’s surface.
‘Can you hear me?’ A ghostly whisper met Pearl’s dream, startling her awake.
“Pearl!” Delian shook Pearl awake.
“Delian? I thought…”
“You were dreaming. Pearl, are you alright?”
“I think everything’s going to be alright for now. We have to find a way to fight the Baskelight’s corruption though. They’re not going to stop, not until they have all of us gone. All that stands between them and destroying this world… Is our light, this world’s waters, but they’re killing the sea, the lakes, the rivers… Missy... She just has to find someone who loves her… The curse can only be broken when the land loves her, the sky will do the rest. Gaia was going to die to free Naiad, but Ciel gave up his own magic and life in turn to safe Gaia, but it would only have been able to safe Gaia if Naiad loved Gaia as much as he loved her.”
“Sounds almost like our own love…” Delian flushed, as did Pearl.
“In a way it does. Do you think she’ll find that perfect someone?”
“Only when the time is right.” Delian assured her.
29th August 2008 – Maldives
“Uncle Darwin!” Missy shouted down to reach her uncle who was busy cooking breakfast below deck.
“What is it Missy?” He stepped back and to see the girl stand at the top of the stairs.
“Delian and Pearl’s here! Can I please go swim?”
“Yes, you can. Just please don’t go to deep or too far. And take the line with you! I don’t want you drowning, though I know I can trust those two of taking care of you.” Darwin sounded more-and-more each day like an over protective father. He watched Missy disappear from his view and hear her scurry to grab the life line tied to the boat, throwing it along with some other stuff into the salty blue sea before jumping in herself. She had learned to swim in the last 2 months after finding out she could ‘float’, being naturally buoyant. Wanting to swim with her sister and Delian, to see what they saw, Darwin and Pearl agreed to have Missy learn Scuba-Diving, for the time being they were teaching her how to ‘not drown’ and now they were practicing free diving.
Pearl and Delian had agreed only to start letting her go down with them to five meters if she could keep her breath for at least 6 minutes. Missy still had a way to go, her time not close to 2 minutes, being as active as she was though, her time was improving slowly. In between visiting Missy, Delian and Pearl was determined to restore vitality to the sea and as well as help Terre’s spirit protect Mer by restoring the land’s health. Joining in on cleaning projects, from picking up trash to rally people to clean the oil spills. Many other Undine joined in, helping save marine life from forgotten fishing traps and lost fishing nets and lines to. Humans joined in and helped treat injured animals and starting awareness groups for the slowly dying species of Sharks, Dolphins, Turtles, Whales, Tiger, Wolves, you name it. They soon found that ‘real’ divers, Humans, where their greatest allies. But one could not expect a shift in balance for power in only a few short months.
What they did realize though was to make more people aware of the treat to not only the Sea and the Undine, but to the land and its people and the sky and its kind, they had to make themselves known! After years of mermaids having become myths, they were reviving the old folk’s lore about magic. But not just them, others older than the Undine have had their hand in sparking rumors long before now. They were the first to be affected by the Baskelight, living in shallower waters and in lakes and rivers.
Video’s about odd creatures quickly went viral. A mermaid sun bathing on rocks by a cliff, the waves crushing and spraying her with salty drops for instance. Sea monsters suddenly coming alive, or rather found dead on a beach, such as the Montauk Monster recently on the 12th July, that Delian and Pearl they themselves brought close to land to be washed up. Other ‘sea monsters’ of the dying lives of the world’s waters were that of the Moscow Monster and the Big Tooth both having surfaced to the world above knowledge in 2006. Strange creatures have been ‘washed up on shore’ since 1950, one being the Canvey Island Monster in 1953. They had to bring the dead to be seen by the people who blindly allowed the Baskeight to rule over them unknowingly, only then would they realize what their blind trust was doing…
But for every advance made against the Baskelight. The Baskelight would prove to be three steps ahead. Each and every dead corpse was made to be believed to be a fake or to have been a stunt by some artist. A simple stating that ‘DNA proof’ found that the creatures were only a sperm whale or a sheep, a dog or sloth, quieted the rumors, but no one was going to give up yet! The water still had many other mysteries waiting to make themselves known. The sea is said to be less known to man than the stars…
“What is the biggest shark you’ve ever seen?” Missy asked as she drifted on her back catching her breath to try and beat her almost 2 minutes breath hold.
“What I’ve seen has to be that one Great White in Cape Town. But Delian has seen a Megalodon. There’s supposedly only two in the entire ocean and they only surface every four-hundred years. You’ll have to ask Delian when he’s back with the fish Darwin asked him for , for today’s lunch.”
“Are there dolphins here? I didn’t see one yet.”
“Yes there are, you should just be patient. They don’t like to always get near people.”
“But I’m not ‘people’, I’m like you!” Missy threw her hand s into the air in exclamation.
“Yes you are. But you have to wait before you can do what I can.”
“I know… Is home… Nice?” Missy asked curious about the place her sister is so determined to protect.
“Yes. Just as beautiful as the island you described to me yesterday.” Pearl remembered how excited Missy was after exploring the one Maldives’ island when she and Darwin went to buy groceries to restock the boat.
“I like the magic you put on my locket to keep the photo’s safe.”
“It’s a pleasure, can’t have it fade because of the water no can we? Come on breakfast…” Pearl was about to say when Darwin did the honour.
“Missy! Breakfast!” Making the swim to the ladder Missy and Pearl went to the top deck where Darwin was setting a table.
“He’s still looking to bait the fish. He’s terrible with catching food!” Pearl laughed. They had just went to sit when a coast guard patrol boat stalled it’s engine and came to drift close to them.
“Can we help you?” Darwin asked the man. Staring down at him from above.
“Yes.” The man hooked a line from Darwin’s boat and pulled them in closer to board. It was Missy who sensed the man’s darker intent first. Pearl seeing Missy’s quivering lip, knew something wasn’t right.
“Excuse me sir, but could you just wait on your boat, my cousin’s not fond of strangers, she’s petrified of new people.” Pearl called down and with a shake of her head Darwin grabbed a knife from the table.
“We’re looking for Darwin Pearlman. He’s a suspect of a kidnapping in February in Australia of a Missy Henderson. We have reason to believe he’s on board your boat.
“No, sorry, haven’t heard of him. We’ve been at sea since last year May, started at Mexico, Cancun. Plan is only to head for Australia in next year. Sorry couldn’t be of more help.” Darwin covered, thankful that the boat was indeed in registered there and having left from there, curtesy to Delian who had lived there before becoming Undine.
“We’ll still need to see papers and check for ourselves.” The man said as he waited for Pearl to climb the stairs down, Darwin keeping an eye on Missy.
“Sure. Here you go.” She grabbed a bunch of papers from a drawer inside the living room.
“And you’re Nina Brown?” He looked at the photo of Pearl. Of course they had to get fake identification for them all!
“And William Brown?”
“He’s up on the top deck keeping my cousin calm.” The man just nodded to Pearl’s reply.
“You’re relationship with him?”
“My Uncle. Fay’s father.”
“Fay being your cousin, correct.” Pearl nodded, something wasn’t right. The man that was still on the coast guard patrol boat was grinning ear to ear, eyes dark and deadly.
“I’ll need to see her for myself.” The man tried to step pass Pearl to climb up, but Pearl wasn’t about to let him.
Not expecting the second man to climb on board too, Pearl was to slow to stop the man from going upstairs. Missy clutched onto Darwin and hid behind him for protection. She didn’t like this man at all!
“Cut the act already! We’re to kill the brother and bring the girl to Lilith; no time to be playing games! Snake wants us to make this quick, so that he can have some fun with the girl, before she’s taken to Lilith anyway!” Pearl had dashed for the fishing spear the moment the man had let the first of his words spill from his lips. Before his partner could even roll his eyes the spear was sunk deep into his chest and Pearl was already rushing up the stairs.
“Missy! Jump!” Pearl hear Delian shout to the little girl, who did as she was told and climb the railing to jump into the water.
“Go!” Darwin shouted to Pearl when he saw her grab for a knife to throw at their attacker.
“Go! Don’t worry about me!” Darwin gave her a faraway smile, blood already dripping from his mouth and a bullet hole in his chest… Pearl tried to recall when the gun shot went off, but had been to occupied to notice the sound of gunfire, or just didn’t want to hear it…
She watched has the Darwin’s murderer threw Darwin overboard and turn to point the gun at her, but she was already over the railing and ready to fall over backwards…
As soon as she hit the water Delian and she dived with Missy to get away as far as they could. Always having been prepared for the day that someone from their life in Eagle Bay came for them.
“Where to?” Delian asked, as they headed back for the surface, so that Missy could breath.
“We’ll catch a flight from South Africa. I have our new passports stashed in an old burnt down church in Durban. We’ll make a home somewhere no one can find us. Hawaii. It’s secluded and close to the sea. But we have to head inland somewhere for a while; they’ll know to look for us at coastal areas. Ciel’s spirit will be able to protect us in Antarctica until December. We’ll head to Hawaii from there.” Pearl said not daring to look back afraid to see Darwin’s haunting death repeated.
Surfacing for air, Missy burst into tears. She had heard the gun shot, she had seen Darwin being shot just as Delian called to her. Wanting to ease her pain Delian used some of his magic to bury the memory deep in her subconscious where she would forget it for now.
8th January 2016 – Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
“Lia!” A dark headed girl called out to her friend who looked similar to her.
“Missy, what are you doing?”
“I got away from my Sister and her boyfriend, come on let go swim! Have you told your parent about find your double ganger?” Missy joked as the two friends headed to the beach.
“No… They think I’m at school! I hate that place, always doing the same old routine each day just to learn stuff I know I never use again in my life once out of that dull place! You’re luck you can do what you want when you want.”
“Lia, you know that isn’t true! I’m not even allowed to come to the beach, the only reason I can get away from my sister is because she thinks I’m at the library. By the way how’s the deciphering going on that book I copied for you? I can understand my sister, but she refuses to teach me how to read the stupid language.”
“Thanks to you teaching me the words and google, I think I’m almost done! With the first page. The language seems to be a mix between French mostly and then Dutch, German, Latin, Finnish, Greek even! A lot of the words are formed by breaking down a lot of the sounds from a main word, and one specific word isn’t necessarily derived from just one language’s sounds, for example sea is often referred to, and though commonly said as mer in this unknown language of your, there is four more words I found with exactly the same meaning as sea.” Lia told, sighing in frustration.
“But it should go faster the more words you figure out, right?” Missy stretch out the last, and peered at her friend until she nodded. Stopping at the edge of the beach where the waves just barely rolled in to touch their toes someone called out to Missy with vicious anger.
“And that is my sister…”
“Lia Kalue! You are grounded!”
“And my mom…” The two girls tried to ignore the two woman calling them and storming up to them a fight between Mother and Sister commencing the moment they had Lia and Missy firmly gripped around the wrist to keep them from running off.
“You keep your daughter away from Missy!”
“My daughter? It’s this girl of yours who has my daughter running off after I dropped her off at school! She’s a terrible influence on my girl!” The two woman bickered without a glance at the girls and without prior notice the woman dragged the girl apart in different directions as they started lecturing them now.
“What were you thinking Missy? You know how dangerous it is to go the beach alone!”
“But I wasn’t!”
“We’ll talk about this later! Delian wants us to pick some stuff up and then meet him later at some other beach. Said it’s a surprise.”
“I’m sorry Pearl.” Missy said watching the ground move has Pearl pulled her along.
“Missy… I just want you to be safe.” Pearl stopped and faced Missy staring long and hard at the locket.
“I don’t want you to lose anyone you care for ever again and neither do I!” She said remembering the photo’s inside the locket. Missy had not opened the locket once since just waking up unable to remember what had happened only to know Darwin was gone.
Picking up stuff for Delian turned out to be fitting dresses he had picked out and getting their hair done.
That evening they were surprised to a dinner on the beach by candle-light. Missy had escorted herself to sit on a rather large boulder looking at the sea. She knew what it meant to go out to far and go down too deep, she was human in more ways than one, but she was Undine too, the sea was where her heart longed to be.
“What are you looking at?” Pearl came to sit by Missy.
“Home… I want to go there.”
“Someday you will. Chris asked where you were today, and when he couldn’t find you at the library…. He was more worried than me! Did you give him that little box Boris gave you back then?”
“Of course! But Pearl… Promise me that should something happen to me, he won’t… He won’t miss me.”
“Missy… Why would you…”
“Please! Make him forget about me! I don’t want him heartbroken, I love him too much to have him know he lost me and could save me. I already told him everything; that has to be why he got so worried.” Missy interrupted her sister, pleading with her sister to do her this one favour.
“I promise.” Pearl held out her hand and a gentle light fractured into dust drifting up into the sky.
“Now if something, anything, should happen that would… He’ll forget, but I can’t guarantee his heart won’t remember.” Pearl hug her little sister.
“Now let’s get back to Delian.” The two girls stood up ready to head back when they heard Delian scream. Pearl was the first to dash to where she heard Delian. Frozen in fear Missy felt the urge to run for the water… Every part of her screamed to run to safety! Again she heard Delian’s screams, this time she heard him scream out Pearl’s name over and over before screaming for her, Missy, to run!
“Ssssuch a prrrretyyy girrrllll…” She was looking straight into a monster’s eyes, straight into hell.
“Snake!” She heard another man’s ordering voice, someone she knew she had to know from somewhere. Turning to run, she felt the man grab her and throw her.
“Where’s Pearl? I thought you knocked her out!” The man hissed in frustration.
“Nymph…” She found herself whisper, her sister was not just any Undine, but a Nymph. Nymphs where part of the sky…
“Have to get to the sea, get to safety too…” Missy dragged herself to her feat, but felt her hear pull and then felt her feet lift off from the ground. She heard the sound of gun shots and then the shouting stopped…
Her head felt like it was being torn at, and she was sure she had kicked her attacker, and was soon pulling herself to get to safety, when she felt a sharp pain to her side and rolling over the sand something hard hitting her head then and then for a moment she was sure she was just waking up from a bad dream, everything quiet and dark. Opening her eyes she felt weightless and could see the stars slowly blanket off behind thundering storm clouds…
“Snake! I told you to take her alive!”
“Uncle…H…” Missy didn’t have the strength left to stay awake, it was just too much to ask of her as the sea pulled her in, hearing someone scream her name in the far, far distance, someone who… She tried to remember, but she couldn’t for the life of her find his name grace her tongue, but her heart was crying now…