Calder had never seen such a creature before. A human. A creature that lived just out of reach on the shore. His eyes followed her below the water as she sat on some sort of floating device. It looked like it was too thin to hold a person, but she easily sat herself on top of it. One thing he had seen time after time with these humans the past few days was they brought things he had never seen. He blinked, lowering himself down onto his boulder in wonder. In his search for something new and interesting he'd found a world he'd never seen…the one above the water. He remembered hearing about a rumor of these creatures deep in the oceans, but this was the first time he found them. He glanced down to his beautifully blue scaled tail with slight displeasure. It easily distanced him even more from the humans.
He'd seen plenty of humans during the day, while he sat in the depths, simply watching those with the floating boards zoom over his head. He would have liked to think he could join them, unfortunately, he had quickly noticed his difference between them when he arrived here. Two days ago he had been the happiest mer-fellow there ever was…until he realize there would be no way to meet a human.
He swished his tail, running a tinted blue hand over one of two fins that spread out from his hips. He remembered the stories from the reef, hearing about creatures that lived above the water, but weren't very similar to what he heard. Apparently they had colonies up there too, but their appearances had some big differences. Humans were tiny, pale, and obviously weren't as aquatic. He flicked his end fins, sending up a cloud of sand and sent a few hiding fish scurrying away.
No doubt he was the whale to her angelfish…no creature in their right mind would get near a merman, not with his size. He sighed again, sending out a flurry of bubbles as he lay back on the boulder. His dark blue eyes watched the human he had admired for the past few days. Her board floated across the surface, and in truth he couldn't help but feel attached to her. He'd seen her just once under the water, but that was all he needed.
She had a hair color he had never seen, a beautiful light brown that flowed in the water making her just like one of his kind. If he didn't see those legs he would have believed her to be just a guppy. She had opened her eyes for a passing second, but he was too far away to distinguish the eye color, though he did find out that it seemed to hurt her to open her eyes. Even if he hadn't seen them he had a feeling they were just as beautiful. She wore some kind of extra skin on her body, but it fit her wonderfully. The darker skin had bright green accents, and for a moment he wondered if she was asking for attention from the hidden merman, but she breached the water as quickly as she had dove under the water. He remembered feeling a "school of fish" flutter in his chest despite her not noticing him. She wasn't looking for his attention, but she had gotten it for good. He was attached as soon as he had set his eyes on her.
Calder never thought of what he would do when he met a human, but now he couldn't break away from her. If some mermaid told him a week ago he would be head over fins for a human he would tell them that they were crazy, but not he was eating his bubbles. Calder had stayed on the base of the ocean for just two days, but he found the habits of this female a little odd, and different than the other humans. She came early in the morning, and stayed until the sun almost touched the horizon. Calder easily found this wasn't 'normal.' All of the people seemed come with the afternoon sun and then leave when the sun was going down, but his female stayed on that board of hers.
He remembered feeling nervous about leaving the first night, afraid that a shark would come to make an easy meal of her. She was taunting them being in the water so late, no doubt the predators would be seeking her instead of a quick fish that was harder to catch. He remembered watching that little board go for hours until she finally left. He could still feel the crick in his neck from looking up at her for so long, yet after she left he still waited a long time. He waited to see that board, but she didn't come until the next morning. Thankfully, he had a full night to rest his strained neck. And now as he observed her moves…he found those same fish fluttering against his ribs as he watched the human. He was so amazed with the small creature that he couldn't take his eyes off her.
He was worried for the tiny human, and although he had yet to meet her, he couldn't leave her. Calder was tired, he knew this morning he had to wake up early to catch her first arriving. His exhaustion didn't take away his surprise when a sudden change in tide made his short hair flow back, signaling a large wave. His heart jumped a bit as his eyes went to the growing wave, it was easy to tell this one was much different than the others that rolled over the surface. Was a storm coming? High tide? His turned his attention back to his human as he jolted to attention.
He couldn't put it into words, but she had a certain grace when she moved, even with those legs of hers. He tried to imagine her with a tail once, but he actually couldn't see it. Even if the tail made him a better swimmer, she knew how to move with legs that made him curious and interested. So, he waited for her. He waited to see if she needed him, or if she did something odd. Not a moment after the wave neared her did he realize his first mistake. He didn't listen to his raving mind that told him to act now. Calder felt his stomach tighten he watched the human dive into the water, but this action looked forced.
When he saw her body crash into the water, he felt his heart leap into his throat. He forced waited for her to catch herself, move those legs like only a human could, but she looked like she was flailing. That was his second mistake. What got Calder moving was to see her limbs and kicks looked panicked, if that wasn't enough he saw a burst of bubbles spill from her mouth.
Calder immediately flew from the sandy floor to the surface. He didn't waste a moment in cupping the human's frail body in his hands and lifting her above water. Although he was more hesitant for his head to break the surface, he lifted his head immediately after she broke the water. His looked frantically around the far off shore for another human. Could they have saved her from drowning? Would they help now? Would they see him? He assumed being spotted would be a bad idea, but looking down to her limp body he found it didn't matter to him. It was getting dark and he knew there wasn't a single human on the beach, so he paid attention to the feeling in his gut to make his next move.
Without another thought he rushed to the shore, pulling himself quickly up into the sand and setting the female down with care. He saw this only once, but it was the only thing he could do to help the smaller mammal. He gently turned her over, gingerly pressing a finger to the small of her back. Calder almost jumped out of his scales when she immediately began coughing. At first he thought it was because he was being too rough, but he was a bit relieved to see water spill out of her mouth.
She laid there in the sand, coughing for a few moments before her ragged breath was back. Calder's fins moved as he leaned over her, twitching in curiosity. This was the first time he had such a close look at her, and now that she seemed to be out of danger he could get a good look at her. She looked even tinier then he had thought about when he had watched her on that board. He shouldn't have been star-struck by the human, but he couldn't stop himself from staring. Only when she started to sit up did he realize his third mistake. He had stayed on the beach without realizing she was really coming to.
Immediately when she looked up to him, he felt his heart stop. Her eyes were a light grey color, making him fall prey to those eyes. The fins at the side of his face swung back to lie against his skull, unsure whether he should quickly slip back out to the ocean, or try saying something. To his knowledge he'd never heard a human talk, but then again he had been underwater when he first met one. Unfortunately the female was in a similar situation as she stared up at him. He nervously smiled, which felt a bit crooked and odd on his face, but it instantly dropped to see her new expression.
The woman jerked back, crawling backwards until he swiftly lifted a hand. She looked terrified and he was starting to feel his spirit dying. He hadn't intended to scare her, but the scream she made when he moved only send his low heart to crash in the sand. She was scared of him, utterly afraid. He could feel his chest get heavier, but he gingerly pulled her back over to him, pressing a finger against his lips while his eyebrows knit together. Calder knew that no one was around on this beach, but to hear her so upset he couldn't help but feel saddened. He wasn't sure what he expected out of her, she was quite smaller than him and no doubt ready to pass to the other side seeing some monster like him, but he let her go when she was back near him.
The young human sat there, shaking, and all Calder could do was look back down at her, dripping wet from the ocean. He sighed, his head lowering in disappointment. Some man he turned out to be, he was scaring a female that he had been admiring for days. What was wrong with him? He had imagined how they would meet, but certainly not like this. He glanced quickly back out to the ocean, the waves were getting rougher. No doubt that rouge wave was the first of many that might have hurt this tiny human.
Calder turned his head back down to the woman, a bit surprised to find her still frozen, but a bit happy that she had actually stayed. He opened his mouth, about to try to explain himself, but the only thing that came out was a crackle from his throat. He could still feel the nervous, happy, bubbly feeling in his chest and he couldn't help but be unable to produce words. She probably wouldn't understand him, but he still felt embarrassed, and his cheeks blushed a light color for his slip-up. He groaned, quickly shutting his lips as he raked his mind for ideas to prove he wasn't here to hurt her. He doubted, even though he had saved her, she saw him as anything but a monster. He remembered saving a dolphin from a fishing net before, but the small mammal ran away from him too.
His mind clicked with a sudden memory. Sand hills. Calder had found out a way to look onto the shoreline through the waves, and with his sharp eyes he had seen children dragging sand up into a hill-type shape. He didn't know what it meant, but plenty of tiny ones had been building them, so it had to be something a lot of humans did. Without a second thought about his little plan, he quickly gathered up the wet sand, building it up. He desperately tried to make it look like the ones he had spotted, but it didn't take long until he realized it just slouched back down into a flat platform instead.
He frowned, watching for the fifth time, as his creation slumped against his tail. Calder swiftly looked to the human, wondering if there was a chance of her understanding that this was a sign of his innocence. The woman looked confused, but to his relief she was still sitting there. She looked a little more uncertain then scared, but that was all the inspiration he needed. Her expression proved that it could be possible to show her that he wasn't a monster. He couldn't stop a little smile as he leaned over, gathering some dry sand and began to let it slip through his fingers onto his flat creation.
The result wasn't what he wanted. His smile dropped as the dry sand simply began to collapse and suck up the water that dripped off his skin. He grumbled low in his throat, how did the kids do it when he couldn't? He perked to suddenly hear a chime of laughter, looking toward the human only to find the soft, charming sound was coming from her. His eyebrows lifted as he surveyed her, waiting to see that scared look again, but she only gave the most beautiful smile he had ever seen.
And if her smile wasn't enough, she stood up (a little uneven he might add), and slowly walked over to him. The merman stilled instantly, afraid that if he moved he would scare her off. It took her a while, he didn't blame her, but he would wait for her next move before he made his own. She suddenly stopped where his tail bent, lifting a hand to brush it against his scales, and shocking both of them when she halted there.
To say that stunned him would have been an understatement. He looked between her and then his tail, waiting for her to bolt away or find that he was daydreaming. This was the kind of meeting he had dreamed of. When he quickly squeezed his eyes shut and opened them, he found her still smiling gently up to him. He couldn't believe it, the woman that he had appreciated these two days was finally near him. The bliss he felt when he could brush a finger over her hair without feeling her flinch was probably the best thing he had ever felt in his life.
"Diana." She said in that small beautiful voice, lifting a hand to lay a hand against her chest. He stared at her, hearing a few more words spill from her mouth, but unfortunately he couldn't understand a thing. So it was true that humans and his people had a different language…how unlucky could he be? He looked down to her dumbly, grinning uneasily. It took a few more tries before he realized that 'Diana' was her name. His heart bounced as he lifted his own hand to press it against his tinted chest.