Two girls skipped stones along the beach one dusky afternoon.
They had spent the entire morning there, playing from the break of sunrise until the sky was doused in the golden haze of twilight. They spent most of their summer days here—not finding anything more enjoyable than the warm sand sliding between their toes, only to be cooled by the gentle caress of the ocean tide. Not many people came to this beach, so it remained mostly deserted, it's natural beauty unaltered by the hands of man, it's water clear of all trash and debris. The only sounds heard were the light swishing of the waves, and one of the girl's exhilerated cry.
"Race you!" the black haired one shrilled, then darted off across the sand , leaving her friend to stare after her.
"No fair!" the other girl protested, her small lips formed a pout as her curly hair curled in the wind.
"Fair is for wusses!" the black haired girl teased over her shoulder. And just as the words left her mouth her foot snagged a stray rock, making her tumble head-first into the water with a resounding 'splash!'
"Kerrie!" her friend shrieked in alarm. She waded over to the injured girl, worry evident in her large hazel eyes.
"Laney!" Kerrie exclaimed hysterically ,"My arm, it's stuck!"
Both girls tugged with all their might, but to no avail. Their hands were rendered useless, sliding right off the surface of the slippery rocks. Their frustration was rising in sync with evergrowing tide . What should they do?
"What do we do?" Kerrie shouted, voicing both girls' concerns.
Laney avoided her gaze, she knew her friend wasn't going to like what she was going to say next, but it had to be done.
"I'm going to go get Erin."
" No, I rather drown then have her help me."
Laney sighed exasperatedly. Her friend could be so difficult sometimes. "She's your sister Kerr, no matter how much of a meanie she is. Plus your parents aren't home."
"Are they ever ?" Kerrie bit bitterly, " And I still say no."
"If the water rises you will drown," her friend pointed out—as water was currently at the girls' chest.
Kerrie was about to protest again, but Laney silenced her with a glare.
"I'm going and that's that," she replied standing and ringing out her drenched t-shirt, "Wait here."
"Like I have a choice," Kerrie mumbled under her breath.
It had been a couple of minutes since Laney's leave and Kerrie was starting to get worried. The sky had darkened to a coal grey and the wind began to pick up, whipping her sopping hair into her eyes repeatedly. The tide had risen to her neck by now and she struggled to keep her head above water. A lone tear escaped her eye and she hastily swiped at it before anyone could see….not that there was anyone around to see in the first place.
Or so she thought.
"Hey, are you crying?" a soft voice implored.
Her head snapped up to see the most magnificent pair of eyes she'd ever seen in her entire ten years of life. They were the perfect combination of sky blue and forest green, the exact shade of the sea.
Kerrie's cheeks flushed bright red, no one was supposed to see her cry, especially not cute strangers.
"No." she lied.
The boy's brow furrowed in confusion. He was almsot sure he had detected moisture in the girl's eyes only moments before, maybe it was just the water?
"Why are you just sitting here?" he inquired, "There's going to be a storm soon, it's dangerous."
Kerrie bit her lip in embarrassment, cheeks blushing brighter.
"I'm stuck ," she admitted, "My arm is caught between two rocks."
The boy smiled, revealing an adorable dimple in his left cheek.
"Is that all?" he breathed, seemingly relieved, " I'll have you out in no time."
Before Kerrie could respond his head had disappeared beneath the water with the rest of his body. She felt slender fingers encircle her wrist as he grasped her with both hands and tugged rigorously. Within seconds her arms were released from the rocks, the force of the pull flinging her backwards into the water.
The boy laughed at her stunned expression, but Kerrie merely stared at her arm in wonder.
" How'd you do that?" she demanded.
The boy shrugged, running a hand through his short, sandy hair, "Lots of practice I guess."
The yell startled both children as they turned to regard Laney advancing across the sand with blinding speed, her sister a few meters behind.
The boy minutely held her gaze, shortening her breaths when he delivered an apologetic grin.
"That's my cue." he announced and Kerrie couldn't prevent the overwelming flood of disapointment that filled her being.
Who was that boy? Would she ever see him again?
Kerrie's eyes nearly popped out their sockets when the boy abruptly dove into the water, scaly green tail trailing behind.
"Ker- Kerrie w-was that?," Laney whispered, and Kerrie gave a swift nod.
"Yeah he was." she whispered back.
"What are you two idiots gawking at ?" Erin demanded upon reaching the girls.
She had stopped a few feet shy of the duo to brace her hands against her knees in an attempt to catch her breath, nearly weazing as the air was forcibly returned to her burning lungs. The girls didn't seem to notice her distress, reamaining motionless as they continued to stare out into the rolling waves.
"Merboy.." both girls breathed in usion.
And as soon as he had come, he was gone.
Rewritten August 24, 20ll Copywrite Live and learn