Where I come from I am quite ordinary. I'm barely given a second glance, really. I'm not popular, extraordinarily beautiful or even very smart.
But to someone like you, I would be very different. You might think of me as magical or maybe a freak of nature. Usually, I find that no matter what someone thinks of me they will all find me very odd.
From my waist up I may be similar to you, seeming like any other human girl. That, however, is where the similarity ends
You see, where you have two legs, I have a long scaly fish tail that sprouts a fin where my toes should be.
You know my kind by many names such as Sea Nymphs, Water Sprites, Sirens, Merfolk and many others. Personally, I prefer the term Mermaids though. It seems like the most fitting name of all of them. Afterall, we are mer-people in a literal sense.
Nevertheless, no matter what names you call me, I am sure many of you have heard the legends.
Beautiful maidens; half fish, half human luring sailors to their doom with their beautiful voices. This is one of many myths that are absolutely not true.
Mermaids very rarely care enough about humans to lure them anywhere. We connect on a spiritual level to the environment, while humans destroy it. We feel that we should have nothing to do with these destructive creatures. We are smart enough to realize that if humans caught sight of us then we'd become hunted.
We have seen the way humans slaughter our fellow sea dwellers with no mercy. Yes, we realise that humans hunt for survival. But we too hunt fish for our survival and we manage to only take as much as we need.
Humans, however, take far too many fish. It is more than they could possibly need even taking into account the huge population. If humans continue like this we will soon have very little food supply left.
Long ago humans, mermaids and all the other creatures on earth lived in peace. Hunting only what they needed, cutting down trees only for small houses and not poisoning the world with greenhouse gases.
That all changed when humans started thinking they were the most superior of creatures. Getting greedy and power hungry and in result destroying the earth slowly. We can sense the world dying, feel the ocean temperature rising. But even with our spiritual connection to the world cannot help, the damage is too great.
There aren't very many mermaids left in the ocean. Many of my kind have died due to oil spills, fishing accidents and being overcome by predators such as sharks. Those of us who are left, live in small groups scattered across the ocean. . The group I live in is nicknamed 'the Cove'. Our homes are situated far in the deep depths of the sea so we don't draw attention to ourselves in case of suspicious humans. The wealthier mermaids live in sunken ships that have been furnished to become almost good as new. Most of the other mermaids live in a labyrinth of underwater caves, similar to what you humans call an apartment building.
My mother and I live alone in a small cave in one of these labyrinths. The closest land to us is a thirty minute swim by mermaid speed, which is faster than any other underwater creatures thanks to our flexible fins and strong tail muscles. But we're forbidden to get too close so I've never seen it for myself.
My mother is a simple woman. She is quite happy to live her days selling her home-made jewellery and spending her free time as a mother. I was happy with this arrangement because I could spend lots of time with her. We were very close and I felt as if I could talk to her about anything.
My life was pretty normal for a teenage mermaid; Other than a few rules broken here and there, I'd never been one to stick to the rules. I spend my days mostly with my friends exploring the nearby reefs or playing with the other marine life.
I never expected much from my life. I thought I'd eventually take over my mother's jewellery business, find my own cave and maybe marry a nice mer-man oneday.
I never realised how much my life could change in such a short amount of time. Well, I guess that just goes to show that life never really turns out how you expect.
My story begins with my friend Cordelia and I swimming around the reefs just beyond The Cove