A Fading Light

June 11, 2010
By Jessip GOLD, Minot, North Dakota
Jessip GOLD, Minot, North Dakota
14 articles 0 photos 12 comments

The water rushed through my hair and down my body, trying to slow my rapid pace. Small air bubbles escaped my lips as I smiled; the lacy, intricate gills on my neck supplying my body with sustaining oxygen. Each powerful pull of my tail brought me that much farther into empty sapphire waters. My muscles burned from exhaustion. At full speeds I was fast enough to keep up with a charging whale.

I was in a shallow, white sanded bay. My swimming slowed and I reached a hand down to skim the ocean sand. Fine, warm crystals parted under my finger tips, and the hot kiss of sunlight rested its lips upon my shoulders and back. My smile faded as I felt the current of someone else behind me.

I turned about to Lucian hovering there in all his glory. His tail shimmered in dark, ruby red and shown with thin rivulets of gold. We had no pupils or irises, just a single mass of color that covered the surface area of our eyes. Lucian’s shown with clouds of swirling silver and emerald. His strong chest and arms were pale like mine from living deeper, farther than the sun’s rays could reach. His slightly webbed hands were gripping a coral spear lightly almost lazily but I knew better to think he wouldn’t use it.

His raised eye brows told me that I’ve been staring and missed everything he just said. I tore my eyes away from his body in embarrassment but I didn’t blush, we couldn’t. He slowly swam away and I followed; he lead me away from the warm sand and bright water down the drop off, towards the chasm.

Our tails glowed with bioluminescent light; his dark red, mine light sapphire pulsating with pearl white veins. We swam the familiar path I’ve taken a million times, having to be brought back on each occasion. As the chief’s daughter I wasn’t allowed to roam as I pleased, as such I’m kept on an ever restricting chain. It didn’t matter that Lucian was bringing me back yet again; we both knew tonight I would sneak out to watch the sea turtles hatch in the full moon.

My city stretched out in front of me, bright and glistening, as if a kingdom from a fairytale. I couldn’t look at it like a shimmering jewel. It was a vice, a prison ever engulfing me in its iron grasp. I was trapped in its pretty, fallacious walls.

The coral structures sprang impossibly high, forming buildings and streets. Legends say it was the first mermaid that sang the coral to life with her voice; I thought that was ridiculous, but there was no way to explain the formation so far from the sun’s reach. He led me to the tallest sparkling tower and through the seaweed hanging archway. I sat down on my calm shell bed and to my surprise he sat on the shark bone chair across from me. My amber and amethyst eyes stared over at him, questioning his presence.

He looked up at my gaze and answered in his deep melodic voice that he was told to keep watch on me. Fire blazed in my eyes; once again I was on lock down. I knew he wouldn’t sleep tonight, we only needed an hour of sleep for every thirty or forty we’re awake. I sat staring out the window until I saw luminescent bacteria start to float to the surface; darkness had swept the land above. I gave Lucian a formal farewell and darted out the window and to the surface. He caught up with me before I even reached the top of the abyss. He grabbed my tail and wrenched me down so he could take a hold of my wrists. He looked almost amused as I glared at him; he was too strong to break away from, I knew that. I bit his wrist; our saliva was an irritant if it got into the blood stream, almost like an allergic reaction. I tasted the sticky sweetness roll across my tongue and the pressure on my wrists was released.

I didn’t waste time looking back; I just swam as fast as I could to the surface. I knew I didn’t have long until he came after me once more. A white blur filled the corner of my vision and I swiveled my head to see a great white shark approaching fast on my left. My heart pounded painfully against my chest as I swam faster. I looked back once again but the shark was nowhere to be seen. My eyes darted and finally I saw it chasing Lucian. I let out a silent scream but it was too late, the monster already had its powerful jaws wrapped around his body. I slowly sank to the ground as I watched it lazily swim away with its meal.

I was the reason Lucian had died. The reason that glorified creature’s life was snuffed out like a blown out candle. I was always told we couldn’t feel remorse, couldn’t cry; but the searing pain in my chest and the hot tears mixing with the ocean current said otherwise.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.


MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!