By Megan Auffart
This story contains lots and lots of violence, rape, child-death, cannibalism, and other such fucked up actions. If you're grossed out by the end of it, it's your own damn fault for reading it despite my warning, so don't blame me. Review! Review review review! If it sucks, say why. If it's good, tell me so I'll be tempted to write some more. Thank you.
I'd been with Greg for twelve years and he still hadn't given me back my skin. The fucker.
It wasn't like he was displeased with my services. I kept the house clean, I cooked the meals every single day, I allowed him to fuck me at his pleasure. I bore his children, a boy first, then a girl. I raised them, despite lacking any natural maternal instinct, while he was out boating on the Atlantic. I wasn't permitted to touch the sea, or even to leave the confines of his property. And he still wouldn't release me.
"Just one more year," he'd say on every midsummer's eve when I approached him. It was always twilight when I asked. That was the way these things were done. And, as he was the one who had possession of my skin, my beautiful silver scales, I had to accept that. He was probably never going to give it back. I'd never see my sisters again.
It was my own fault, really. Every sea nymph knew that to take off the stretchy covering of our skin and to release our legs was a risk, that if anyone took our scales, we would be enslaved. But oh no, I had to show off for my sisters. Prove how brave I was.
I was an idiot. I deserved to be caught by an ignorant fisherman raised on superstition and legend that the rest of the modern world had conveniently forgotten about. But Greg was like that. He didn't have a television, but he had his beliefs, and those had served him well. And I was stuck as his perpetual bitch.
A door slammed and I looked up from where I stood in the kitchen. The children were still in school. Len was in sixth grade, the smartest in his class, and Margaret was in second, bumbling along in a disturbingly mortal way. Eight and twelve years of age. They were nothing but constant reminders of how low I'd been brought.
Their father loved them, though. The other day, he had brought home a small dove he had captured by the cliffs for Margaret to play with, while Len had received a homemade wooden whistle so that he wouldn't feel neglected. It was perfectly clear to anyone who cared to notice that Margaret was his favorite, the blond little grub. I, myself, didn't care much for either of them.
Footsteps echoed heavily along the hallway as I heard Greg walk in, his thick shoes tracking salt-water mud across the floor I had just cleaned the day before. He didn't care about the extra work I'd have to do, though. The sacred magicks that bound me to him though his ownership of the skin would not allow me to complain.
"Hello, Mer," he greeted me and I nodded in response. Mer, short for mermaid. His oh-so-clever name for me, since the magicks that bound me to him did not make me compelled to always answer his questions. I could not lie, but I was allowed to maintain my silence, even with facts as simple as my name.
The ancient gods, long vanished, who had cast that damned spell upon us in the first place for reasons unknown, would probably have been amused by my plight. Throughout the ocean, prior to my capture, I had been known for my pride, my vanity. I had been the most beautiful of all my sisters. And, apparently, the most careless.
Greg kicked off his shoes in the kitchen, after leaving a dirty trail halfway through the house, and the stench that rose from his disgusting mortal feet made me nearly gag. The body odor, the dirt that covered his clothes, face, hands, the pimples on his face, the tangled and oily beard... Greg was everything that I hated compressed into a single person.
If the gods were still around, I hoped that they were choking on their laughter.
"The school called. The buses were delayed so the children will return from school by 4," I said, my face turned away, my voice monotonous. "Dinner will be ready by 7." Die, you fucker. You thief. You bastard. "We're having liver and onions. Your favorite."
I concentrated on the kitchen wall, hoping frantically that today would be different from every other day. That the pattern would change. That Greg would not be interested.
The sound of his fly unzipping was the loudest noise in the room.
"Come on, Mer. We have an hour before the kids get back. Let's make the most of it, hmm?"
It was only the spell that made me to turn around, because no other force on earth would have convinced me to. How I hated every aspect of my existence.
When I had been in the sea, I had earned the reputation of being haughty and vain, a reputation that was greatly deserved. Of all my father's daughters, I was truly the most lovely. I had seduced the greatest number of mortal sailors. A mere glimpse of my breasts, a mere look upon my face, and they would throw themselves into the ocean. For my pleasure, I would watch them be eaten by sharks, or land in schools of jellyfish, or drown slowly with their unspent erections for their only companions as they sank down to the bottom, staring at me with dead eyes.
That had been better than any sex that Greg could ever hope to share with me. The cold shivers that coursed through my body, the absolute thrill of watching the idiot men sacrifice their worthless lives for me... There was nothing on land that could compare to that sensation.
But I stupidly had decided to impress my sisters with my courage. To take off my scales and to dance on land with human feet, to foolishly leave my skin where any half-assed mortal could get his greedy hands on it.... Part of me knew that I deserved the trials I've had to go through with Greg. It was my own stupidity that had gotten me here in the first place.
Even as a human, I was still beautiful. And I was his to do with as he pleased.
Feeling numb, I let Greg lead me into the living room where he would make me lay on the ratty, patched-up couch where he had fucked me so many times before. I knew the shitty paint job of the ceiling by heart, for all the times I'd stared at it, waiting for the moment to end.
I closed my eyes and let him take off my dress. One day I'd make him suffer for this dishonor. Oh, the damage I would do to him.
I concentrated upon that thought as I felt his hand slide up my thigh and tug at my underwear. One day.
Just wait, you fucker. Just wait.