Title: Of the Sea
Genre: fantasy, multipart
Archive: same old.. anybody has my other fics can take this one too. anybody else, just ask ^.^
Pairings: if you *really* wanna look hard, you might see some 2+1 in this part. maybe. i dont even remember...
Rating: pg for this part
Warnings: shounen ai (maybe not now, but in the future) AU, original characters. this part does have some death in it... but its *very* minor characters. they dont even have names... heck, only one of them even says something, but still. the warning is there.
Disclaimers: im sure you could have guessed, but in case not, i dont own gundam wing. and sadly, i dont own andersen's 'the little mermaid' either. woe is me...
Notes: its late. forgive mistakes, because i dont have a beta. other than that.. well, thank you for reading, and enjoy!
//blah// indicates thoughts
Of the Sea part 1
Duo sat impatiently at the head table in the hall, beside his father, the king. Lylie sat on his other side, eating her fill, just like everyone else in the hall; everyone except for Duo. As part of the ritual, Duo was forbidden to eat anything that day. But all that food looked so tempting, so tempting... Duo muffled a grunt as Lylie elbowed him in the side. "Stop trying to sneak the food, you know it's not allowed!" Lylie told him for the umpteenth time that night.
A merman came in to the hall then, and bowing to the king, addressed him. "Your highness, the ceremony will begin soon, is your son ready?"
"He is," the king replied, "but I would have him do one thing before he departs." Then, turning to Duo, he asked, "Son, will you sing for us? I want to hear your voice one more time before you leave your childhood." The noise in the hall quieted and was replaced by a silent, expectant air. It was the first time duo had been asked to sing in public, and everyone was eager to hear it.
"Uh, sure Dad." Duo flashed the king a grin and then got up. He went to the center of the hall, and then he sang. He sang a song of how the land was first created and the wonders the merfolk saw on it from afar, and of the humans that dwelt there. It was a beautiful song, and his youthful voice echoed throughout the hall. All of the merfolk sat still, spellbound, and outside the reeds seemed to lean closer as if to hear the sweet melody better. It was well known that Duo had the most beautiful voice of all the merfolk. Only his sister, Lylie, was close to his talent, and even she could not match him.
When the song was over, the king got up and hugged his son, then shooed Duo out towards the door where the messenger was waiting. The messenger turned and swam out of the hall. Duo followed after him, and turned to wave to Lylie. She smiled back and he hurried to catch up to the merman. Duo looked around as he swam. They passed out of the palace grounds, through a kelp forest and to the mouth of a tunnel. They entered it and as he swam, the tunnel turned upwards and his head broke the surface of the water.
They were in a large cavern, and the only opening was the tunnel they had come through. The messenger ushered him over to a rock ledge, and Duo hauled himself out of the water to sit on it. Taking a close look, Duo saw that within the dark stone were encased small gems sparkling in the dim light... dim light? There were no glowing fish like the ones that lit up the ocean depths at night, so what could it be? Duo couldn't figure out the source of light, but was distracted when a mermaid emerged in the cavern.
She swam over to Duo and placed some things on the rock ledge beside him. "Duo, the ceremony will now begin. You must be silent until it is over. Do you understand?" Duo nodded in answer. She pulled herself out of the water and sat behind him. He felt the crown he had made being lifted from his head, and then an icy cold trickle of water as she poured it over him.
"You are washed clean of your childhood," the mermaid said. Another flask of water was emptied onto his head. He noticed, as some made it into his mouth, that it tasted.. different. More like an absence of taste. Duo had never known that freshwater, without salt, existed.
"You are washed clean with the water from the rivers on the land. No longer are you a child, but an adult."
Then Duo felt his hair being unbraided. "A merman is not obliged to wear his hair braided as all children are. You may wear your hair down," the mermaid intoned as his hair fell loose about his shoulders, wavy from the braid and wet from the sea. She reached around his neck and looped a braided seaweed necklace around it. Duo looked down and saw a purple-blue shell that hung from it. He had only ever seen one of them in his life.
"This precious cosal shell signifies that you are heir to the Throne of the Sea. Wear it well." The one he had seen was the one that hung from his father's neck.
The mermaid replaced the crown on his head and slipped into the water. Looking up into his face, she said, "You are now permitted to swim to the surface. Once I leave, you may go where you wish." Then, all formality forgotten, she smiled at him. "And if you hurry, you might even see the sunset." With that, she dove down into the tunnel and disappeared. Then, with a second splash and without a second though, Duo swam after her and out of the cavern.
Duo was so excited he was practically shaking. He swam as quickly as he could up to the surface. When his head emerged, he was dazzled by the spectacular show of colors on the western horizon. He watched them as they changed from bright yellow and orange to pink and purple, ad then finally went out. Then he looked up. The first stars were just coming out, and he gazed at them, spellbound, as more and more appeared. They were beautiful beyond anything he had ever imagined, even more so than he had dreamed they would be.
Spinning about, he continued watching the stars. Then he saw a crescent shaped light in the sky. //I wonder what that is, it's not a star// he thought. //Oh! It must be the moon. How pretty.. what??// There was a small.. something... floating on the waves in the distance. As Duo swam closer, he heard music, singing and laughter that became louder and louder until he came even with the floating thing. //Is this a boat, like the things that Nana used to tell us about?//
"Prince Heero, come sit here so you can watch the fireworks!!" one of the humans called to another. The man that looked up and started walking towards the caller had brown hair, all in disarray as if it hadn't been brushed for days, and dark blue eyes, the same color as the sea at night. His statement was.. well, Duo couldn't really tell. It was more like a lack of statement than anything else.
Duo jumped at the loud sound, and looked up to see where it had come from. Hundreds of tiny lights, just like stars, were blossoming like a flower in the night sky. Duo heard a series of "ooh"s from the boat. Then there was another bang and more lights were exploding in the sky. The beautiful display took his breath away. Nana had never told him about anything like this, and it was a very welcome surprise.
A cry was heard from above the deck of the boat. Duo squinted up at the top of the mast and saw a man waving down at the other people. "Storm approaching from the starboard side!! All hands on deck!!" (1) Duo heard bare feet thumping on the wet planks as the humans ran to and fro carrying ropes, tying knots, and doing all manner of things as a man at the center stood shouting orders.
"Prince Heero, go below where it's safe!" called one of them. Duo caught a last glimpse of the prince before he disappeared below the deck.
Duo watched the other men curiously until he heard another loud boom. He looked up, but there were no lights in the sky beside the starts and the moon this time. Then he heard another one, slightly closer. He looked around and noticed big, dark grey masses on the horizon. They were getting closer, and he noticed that they were covering up the stars. Then he saw a bright flash of light. The boat was outlined vividly against the sea, which was becoming choppy as the wind picked up. He heard another large bang. The clouds were getting closer and closer, and the wind howled, bringing waves crashing down upon the surface of the water.
Duo was starting to get a little scared, but he wanted to figure out what was happening. He looked up again. Almost he entire sky was covered by dark, roiling clouds, blocking the small amount of light offered by the stars and moon. There was another flash, and Duo saw a thin, forked white light reach down from above. The boom followed almost immediately.
Glancing back at the boat, he saw it tip slightly as a giant wave hit it from the side. There was a collective yell and Duo saw all the men sliding across the deck. He felt himself rising up and being carried away from the boat on the top of a wave. Frantically, he dove back under and came up near it. Another flash. Duo saw the bright light strike the mast as a deafening boom drowned out the screams of the men and the boat pitched back and forth in the choppy sea.
Duo had never seen fire before, being a creature of the sea. He watched as it quickly ate the sails and ran down the mast and rigging towards the deck. Another wave hit the boat and Duo gasped as it amazingly righted itself from a perfectly horizontal position. The rain was coming in sheets and energy crackled in the clouds, just waiting for another unsuspecting mast to strike. Swimming closer, he realized that the people on deck were no longer being directed by anybody, but were instead clinging to ropes, rails, and anything else they could grab onto. Screams issued from each of their mouths as the boat pitched and swayed in the none too calm water.
The fire, Duo noticed, had spread along the mast and many of the ropes were burning as well. Some of the men opted to brave the angry seas rather than the burning ship, and others were thrown screaming into the water with each gigantic wave that dared the boat to stay upright. A deafening boom filled Duo's ears once again, and he screamed in surprise. A wave the size of a whale came crashing over his head and he was swept down unexpectedly. Breaking the surface once more, he watched awestruck as the ship was struck by another crashing wave.
The boat's valiant efforts to stay afloat were squandered as a second wave slammed into the hull. This time, the boat did not right itself. Swept about on its side for a matter of seconds, it was smashed to bits by the furious and roiling water. Duo's eyes widened in shock. People couldn't survive under water! //They're all going to drown.. I have to do something!// His heart racing, Duo swam as fast as he could towards the wreckage.
//No, they won't die. They don't deserve to die. Not like this. No human deserves such a horrid fate as this.// Pushing aside splintered pieces of wood, Duo searched frantically for someone. Anyone. He had to save at least one of them. A wave crashed overhead and he was swept under. As he fought his way upwards, he glimpsed an all too human form sinking to the depths. Whirling around, he swam to the man and hauled him towards the air as fast as his tail could flip.
Keeping the man's head above the water, however, proved more difficult than he would have thought. It rolled from side to side of its own accord and the waves threw the two about relentlessly. Duo was soon beginning to tire and he wondered how much more of this he could take. He fought on, though. Daring the waves to do their worst, he kicked his tail with renewed strength. His entire being was focused on one thing: keeping this man alive. He didn't care who the guys was, didn't care how much his tired muscles hurt from the effort. All he knew was that this guy didn't deserve to die.
Duo never saw the broken board coming. How could he, when the waves acted perfectly as walls to block his sight? How could he, when he was barely conscious from exhaustion? All he felt was something hard striking him in the back of the skull before the world went black.
(1) starboard is the right side of the ship.. heh, gotta love all those nautical terms...
cliffhangers.. evil, i know, but it was the best place to stop, honest!! ::ducks random chairs and books being thrown her way::
eheheh... well, you guys like?? i hope so. i said above that im pretty proud of this part.. and i am. so please, be kind, and send some comments my way, ne?? in any case, thanks for reading!!
i am going to be gone this weekend, so keep in mind that the next part wont be coming out until monday at the earliest. well, thats all for now, till next time!!