Mermaid of the Rocks (Part 1 of 2)
A bright silver coin drifted with the current of a river, eventually traveling to the sea where it remained undisturbed, tossing and flowing with the way of the water for many years. Only when a mermaid decided to go collecting treasure for her purse was the coin rediscovered. The mermaid was gathering rocks, gems and left over objects from ship wrecks when the warm glimmer of the coin caught her eye. She assumed it was just some money a human had accidentally lost from a ship, but she collected it gladly.
As it fell into her purse, she was momentarily struck by it’s heaviness, the colour and clarity of it. She wondered which country it came from and was confused by the simple image of the elvish crown that was imprinted on it.
As she swam back to her mermaid home, she felt very strange. A beautiful warm feeling swept through her arms and chest to her stomach and face. As the feeling continued to spread through to her fin, her green scales slowly turned a rose golden colour, shimmering in the faint light. The tip of her fin tail shone a pearly white and her hair became tended to by dazzling sapphire broaches which appeared like little fishes from further out in the ocean. The purse she was carrying now contained not the stones and bottle caps she had collected but hundreds of pearls, diamonds and rubies. The house she lived in grew in size and became a large kingdom. Other mermaids and mermen who had lived there swam out to meet the mermaid, astonished at what was happening.
“We’re rich!” laughed Duke, the leader of the mermen. “What on earth has happened, do you know?” he asked the mermaid.
The mermaid shook her head, “I’ve not the faintest idea.”
Now mermaids have never been poor. None other is richer than the king and queen merman and mermaid. As a species, they have never struggled with treasure. But certainly they had never experienced the instant wealth that was given to them by the coin, and found they had no idea what to make of it.
The mermaid enjoyed looking at her golden scales, which sparkled in the sun rays that beamed through the sea. But her tale became awfully heavy to swim, as gold tends to sink in water.
All the diamonds and rubies looked wonderful in her bedroom, but mer creatures began to queue up to her door to ask to hold them, and sometimes even tried to steal them. This made the mermaid very untrusting of even her closest friends, so she created a lock for her bedroom. As the owner of these precious jewels, she became known as ‘Mermaid of Rocks.’
Now and then a merman would swim to her palace and knock on her bedroom door.
“Let me in, I wish to marry you, Mermaid of the Rocks!”
“Leave me alone,” she would reply, “I am not in want of a husband!”
And then more and more would come knocking. “Mermaid of the Rocks, I have swam much distance to reach you, and I wish you to become my wife.”
“Go away!” she said loudly, “I want no husband.”
Hundreds of mermen would attempt to marry her but she refused and would not leave her bedroom.
One stormy evening, the sea was entirely black and the mermaid was suddenly frightened of being alone in her room, so she forced herself to leave. She decided to swim out to the deepest part of the sea, where the blackness was struck by flashes of lightning from above. She could see the outline of the bottom of a large ship. The mermaid had observed these many times before and knew it to be a pirate ship. The boat was swaying dangerously with the waves and the lightning flashes surrounded it. The mermaid swam to the surface and watched as the sails of the boat crashed and ripped. One final huge wave proved to be the end, and the violent thrashing turned the boat upside down. Many men went with it, and they all swam desperately, gasping to the water’s surface. They did not notice the head of the the mermaid bobbing about, as they choked for breath.
The mermaid took the silver coin from her purse and rubbed it in her hand as she said loudly to herself ‘I need to save the pirates!”