Epilogue: Moving On
25th February 2018 – San Francisco, California, USA
“Are you going to come help me unpack?” Sirena asked Chris as they finished lunch.
“I could… But what do I get out of doing you chores?” Chris teased.
“Fine! Guess I’ll not be sharing my ice cream with you!” She shrugged and took the last slice of the tune pizza she had asked the place to make.
“I still can’t seem to fathom why you like eating fish so much!”
“It has to be because I was raised by dolphins!”
“You were not raised by dolphins! You were raised by some strange people who like disappearing into thin air and go out to sea thinking they’re mermaids, nymphs and ancient spirits!” Chris said sarcastically.
“No...” Sirena fell into his trap already ready to protest.
“They’re not mermaids! They’re Undine! And I don’t remember being raised by any of them! I… You so dead!” She screamed, turning heads as she started to laugh.
“I can’t believe you keep getting me to… You’re so irritating!” She stretched over the table and grabbed his hat!
“You’re not getting this back until you apologize!” She said, thinking she had the upper hand.
“Not if you want me to pay for ice cream.”
“Oh I would!”
“Fine, take it!” She handed his hat back to him.
“I’m just glad that we’re not moving too far away. Dad wants me to go to the highschool that’s in walking distance from our new house.” Sirena slumped hating the idea of school after all Clair had to say about it. Having gone to Clair’s primary school, everyone was a lot younger than her and so were ‘nice’ according to Clair.
“What if everything Clair said is true? What if they ‘bully’ me?”
“Then you whipped them with that magic you’ve been practicing after Pearl had taught you!”
“I can’t do that! Magic isn’t meant to hurt others! When do you suppose she’ll be back?”
“I don’t know? After those few people went to live in the sea and Pearl and Delian returned too… I haven’t seen or heard of even a rumor popping up about ‘mermaids’. Don’t try to correct me.” Chris stopped Sirena midway from wanting to tell him right like always.
“All’s well! I’m happy to stay right here with you and Clair and Jacob… Everyone! You’re my family now!” She said giving him a warm bright smile, but he could see her missing the sea behind her act of joy.
“And just for your information; school isn’t all bad. You’ll make plenty of friends and you could always join the choir, school plays, maybe do cheerleading seeing as how good reflexes and jumping skills you have. I’m sure you’ll be the most popular girl there!”
“I just like the ‘bullying’ part. I hope I don’t get a ‘bully’.”
“You won’t I promise!” Chris reassured her.
“I believe you! So on to the next topic! Aunt Sandra asked us to join them for dinner tonight, she said I could bring you, if you want to come.”
“I’d love to! Last I saw her she hadn’t even had sign of a little monster growing in her.”
“He isn’t a monster! You just got me again…” Sirena lowered her head in her hands, sighing.
“She’s gotten pretty big, right now the plan due date is the 17th June. I can’t wait to play with him!”
“You sound pretty sure it’s a boy.”
“It is! Sandra and Ed though want it to be a surprise, but I can tell you right now it is a boy!”
“Did you use your magic? Or is this one of those female intuition, sixth sense, kind of thing?”
“No magic… What sixth sense thing? We only have five senses.”
“Not according to some people, they say woman have a sixth and sometimes even a seventh sense, when they become mother, about some stuff.”
“I will have to ask Mom about that… It sounds fishy…” Chris couldn’t resist laughing, Sirena was still so very naïve.
“What? Do I have something on my face again.” She asked just as he got control over his laughter.
“No. It’s just you finally used that metaphor right.” He tried to suppress his laugh, but failed again, as a new bout of the laughing bugs infected him.
“You’re mean! Does that mean you’re a bully?” Sirena asked remembering Clair say something about bullies being mean.
“In a way yes. But I’m one of the good bullies!” He said while holding back more bursts of laughter.
“Oh… In that case bullies aren’t that scary as Clair made them out to be.”
13th March 2018 – San Francisco, California, USA
“Sirena!” Clair screamed storming into Sirena’s room boxes stacked with clothes, books, pictures and unnecessary stuff she insisted she needed.
“Yes?” Sirena asked as she inspected a snow globe, having been distracted from unpacking, Chris helping David unload the rest of the boxes that came with the last moving truck.
“That is mine! Why do you always take my stuff!” Clair tried to grab the snow globe back, but Sirena wasn’t about to hand it back so easily.
“Relax. I’m just trying to figure out how it works.”
“Well if you ask I could have told you! You shake it and the glitter swirls inside for a while until it sinks and then you just shake it again!” Clair tried again and Sirena went to stand easily tall enough to keep the globe out of Clair’s snatching hands.
“But how did the water and glitter get inside?”
“That’s just how they make it! Stop wanting to know everything!” Clair jumped to try and reach the snow globe but it was futile.
“I guess you’re right. I won’t be able to know everything, but I’m not going to stop trying. Here, I have an idea how they did it. Will try it out later.” Sirena handed the snow globe back.
“I’m glad I didn’t have to break the two off you up again.”
“Dad, do we have a glass that won’t be missed? I’ll need glue too and glitter! Maybe something flat and hard too.”
“You and your experiments. I’ll see if we have something you can use, but after you finished unpacking!”
“Yes Sir!” She stood at attention and saluted, then went to hug him tight.
“I love you!” She blurted out, unaware that Margret was standing just around the corner.
“Margret, I think we have the best family anyone could ever ask for!” David said when he saw his wife wiping a tear away smiling like she had heard the most wonderful sound in the world.
“I know so! And also Lillian and Meriam are having us for dinner again tonight, they insisted! Meriam want to show Clair and Sirena the shells she got from the beach. Lillian wants to let the girls play too, Meriam is going to be admitted to the hospital for a heart transplant. Her heart’s starting to give in, poor girl…” Margret whispered as she leaned onto David.
“I’m sure she’s going to be just fine. If she gets her new heart then she’ll be able maybe keep up with Clair’s running about. Now how about we go get your kitchen sorted before Jacob figures out how to open boxes. I left Chris to watch him for a moment.”
They laughed and played as they sorted the boxes and started unpacking. Clair deciding to build a ‘box-fortress’, while Sirena quietly packed her books away for later until her bookcase was put back together.
“You’re awfully quiet.” Chris noted as he passed her the books to hide in her closet on an empty shelf.
“Meriam’s sick. And I don’t know how to help her.”
“Sirena… Sit.” He went to sit on her bed and pulled her with him.
“You can’t fix everything, not even with all the magic in the world. If that was possible then none of everything that has we went through, that you, Pearl and Delian went through, would have happened. Sometimes we just have to move on. Like moving into a new house, for a bigger family.”
“ That doesn’t make it right for me to just feel ‘fine’ when I hear that Meriam’s heart is getting weaker.”
“No it doesn’t, but maybe we should just accept it and make her enjoy what time she might have left, and who knows, maybe if they get her a new heart she’ll have a lot more days to have fun with us.”
“Thank you Chris. But I think I might know something to help her.” Sirena went to grab a book from one of the many boxes, written in a strange language.
“There’s a healing song in here somewhere. Pearl showed me how to read it.” She found the ‘song’ and went to memorize it.
That night while at table, Sirena song the short verse and without anyone, but Chris, noticing the magic dancing about Meriam enjoyed the sweet sound. Chris could not reason way Sirena cared so much about others, but was glad that she had a family who shared that same type of caring for others. They were finally moving on with their lives. No one was the wiser about the disappearance of people of all corners of the world disappearing, though few they were, and no one suspected the truth about Sirena being ‘magic’ herself. He only hoped that it was finally the end for them and the monsters that haunted his dreams and that of Sirena…