“We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day”.
With all the beauty overwhelming my senses, my eyes had deceived me. For there in the middle of the pond poked two big curious grey eyes. We both stared at each other with curiosity and fear. I dared not blink, for my eyes have already deceived me. But the tension was too much and the urge too strong, when my eyes opened the eyes were gone.
I decided not to think of the what was but, rather of what the fate is awaiting me. I laid myself next to the edge and soon fell peacefully to sleep, such a slumber that I soon lost myself within the darkness. I was only awoken by splashes and screams. The screams were so piercing that it made me wish I was with the old man snoring in my cot. I shot up into a sitting position with such veracity that my brain was still grudgingly following until it smashed against my skull and I was left with a faint feeling. When I could gain enough consciousness, I began to look for the source of the screaming. What I found was not something that I would ever have imagined. A liquid ball of water levitating above the water as though it was meant to. When I focused, I could see something or someone within it. But before I could figure out the object, I was put into utter silence when mysterious figures began to ascend from the depths and floated upon the surface of the water. Interesting creatures they were, for they had no feet, nor even legs, just a solid mass. Baffled I decided this was a dangerous place and should leave, but curiosity struck me and I stayed hidden behind the stones. The figures began to circle around the floating ball and started to chant in a language that eluded me, yet, filled me with such emotion that tears descended my cheeks. So, fluid and relaxing. Then something started to happen to the water mass, for it began to glow with a white light that stung my vision. Then a splash came as though the object was expelled from the water mass.
When the chanting and glow subsided, I regained my vision and saw the most beautiful creature. A tail of a fish long and strong with colors of every shade I had ever seen within my short life, from blues to greens, purples to yellows, and even reds to orange. Then my eyes locked eyes with the beauty. The same curious greys as before. Its gaze glowed with emotion, and I realized then that I was in the presence of a siren.
Her beauty was impeccable and indescribable. Her skin had no scars, nor wrinkles, she was so pale as though the sun never graced her presence. Her lips as red as cherries, that matched hair which was orange red in color as though burning like fire. Within that instance I fell in love, like any other man would. Her beauty was unmatched to any maiden I had ever laid eyes upon. When the floating figures began their descent into the blue water, I quickly got to my feet and trudged my way into the water to meet this maiden. But when I got to the edge she was slowly descending. Until she saw me, she noticed me the moment my foot touched the shoreline. She had fear now in her eyes, for she was alone. Before she could elude my life forever, I called to her.
“Be still young maiden, for I shall not hurt you. I only wish to meet you”.
Startled by my request she dared not to move. Before her thoughts could control her, I treaded through the water in haste. For curiosity, had captured her too. As we drew closer, I began to speak once more with a tremor of fear lingering off every word. “Morning milady, I am known as Jeremy. May I be graced with your name”?
She stared at me for a moment. I saw the fear receding behind her eyes. “Lilian”, she whispered with such softness that one’s heart could melt. I expected more to be said, but knew there was still fear within her. When we were finally close enough to feel each other’s heat, I began to speak once more.
“Milady your name is as beautiful as you are. I am so blessed to be in the presence of someone so beautiful, for if my eyes were to burn away I will never regret my last site”.
Hesitantly again she began to speak, with such a melodic and soft voice that could only sooth one’s heart. “My dear sir, you shan’t be in such a place, there are dangers here and no one will help you. Please leave before you are taken”. Shocked I began to ask, “why would I wish to leave your side? I have only found you. Do you not wish for my presence? I only wish to know you.”
With fear pulses through her eyes and panic in her soft voice, “No, you must go! You cannot stay here for it is dangerous and deceiving. You are the first human I have ever seen crossing my path here and if father found you, he would have you skinned and left to bleed out. You seem sweet but our kind can never be friends.”
I retorted with such a mocking sense I never knew. “I shan’t not leave, milady. For I have only found you, your beauty is intoxicating and I wish never to part from you.”
“Why me? Good sir, you are sweet and kind but also foolish. Look at yourself then to me, we are of two very different worlds, there will never be a place for the both of us together, so leave and never come back, forget me for I am evil.”
She departed into the darkness of liquid. I wished that it wasn’t true, but as everything that comes to past… It was.
I stayed there for what felt like hours, until my feet longed to stretch out and rest. As I walked back I kept repeating our encounter playing again and again. I began to pray to god that he would grant me this one thing, which was to meet with this beautiful maiden once more. When I got back to camp the old man was still sleeping in his cot snoring away, but with what I encountered just moments before his snoring would not be a bother especially with my happiness I have. Once I laid myself to rest my eyes began to close, in hopes of catching a glimpse of her beauty once more.
That was the best slumber I had ever encountered in all my years of life.
It was all too quick, her sight, my slumber, and now the day has arrived and the old man viciously tried to stir me of my slumber. Groggy and crusty eyed, I awoke. Clearly upset, the man began to whisper, “Quite lad, be soft with your sound. Something is wrong. Everything is quite outside. No one is stirring no one is speaking.”
Confused and clearly out of his mind, I ignored his assumption and brushed his warning aside. When I poked my head out of the tent. Everything was destroyed, nothing left alive, blackened by ash, the smell was piercing my nose, then stinging in my eyes. How was everything destroyed? I heard nothing nor seen. Everything was gone, soldiers, horses, knights, father and my brothers. “My brothers!” I stumbled on air like I usually do when panicked, chasing the path that once led to my father and brothers, even if for a night. When I found, what was left of father’s tent with my brothers besides his, I noticed their bones, charred and blackened. They didn’t even fight, they didn’t even know. They were swallowed in flame in their slumber like everyone else. Why not I? Before I could feel sadness, the man was behind me, “we must flee, lad. It is not safe here, it never was. The sirens have been angered by our prolonged presence”. Angered at his voice, bothering my grief that never game, disturbed by words. Wait, what did he say about sirens?
“How could sirens…? Why would they, how do you know of their presence. Why are we not at the same faith as those around us, why are we to breathe”?
“Because I was once a friend”.
“How could you be a friend”?
“Because I was smart. I honored their wishes and shared in their respect. As did you boy, that is why we stay, allowed to breathe in this life, although I wish they have taken us, we are the only who live, we are now fugitives. No one will believe us; they will think we killed them. We must disappear, come now do not wallow, we must leave before someone sees us here with breath”.
As he spoke, I didn’t change my sight. I prayed again for my father and brothers, yes they were mean, but they were of my kin. I could never hate them, not truly hate them. More of envy them.
When I finally looked up and looked the man in his eyes, a single tear dropped from my eye and I began to sprint, back to the woods, back to the pond, and back to that girl.