What the Water Gave Me (Rose Swan and Taiylor Wallace)
Legends are told of an ancient and mysterious island of Atlant. Many brave sailors and adventurers have gone looking for it and the treasures within, but they came home empty handed, if they came home at all. Rumors circulated of a "mermaid's call" that entrapped them in Atlant forever. Others say that the call could summon a powerful storm and bring the wrath of Hell down upon them. Others say that it was the legendary permission given to enter Atlant from mermaids, or the god Leviathan himself, and those who entered never wanted to go back.
Around Atlant lived these mermaids. One of them was swimming close to the shore, watching the children play. Atlant's tarnished silver spires were in ruins at the shore, showing just how Atlant was no longer as great as it had been once before, and reflecting in the sunlight and in the clear blue water.
"Rialta! Rialta!" a child's cry sounded, and the blonde mermaid looked over.
"What is it, love?" she asked with a grin.
"Come play with us!"
Rialta dove beneath the water, her emerald tail trailing behind her. It was the kind of emerald that if you looked at it in the right light, it made rainbows.
Everything about Rialta shimmered. From the coral jewelry she wore to the gold of her hair to the watery blue of her eyes, the kind of blue that everyone imagined the sea should look like. The kind of blue that was almost nonexistent in humans. It was this shimmering that gave away her element of surprise to the children, but she still swam up from beneath them and scooped them up, tickling a little girl. For a while she splashed and played with them, until she had to go. Where she was going, she didn't say. But they knew she always disappeared around this time of day.
She swam out of the borders of Atlant's invisible bubble and out into the open sea. She had found a hole in it once, 100ft beneath the surface, and she loved slipping into it and out to go look at the humans, the common people. Rialta was swimming for miles until she got as close to the shore as she dared. They always said that close to shore were fishing nets, lots of them. If she got caught in one, the secret would get out, and she would be killed. That always held her back, but she always enjoyed simply watching.