" The arms of the ocean are carrying me. And all this devotion came rushing out of me. And the crashes are heaven for a sinner released." - Florence + The Machine, Never Let Me Go
Moonlight danced on the dark ocean water, giving it an aura of silvery light. A flash of lavender emerged from the water. The tail of a siren. Pale skin was illuminated and a glimmer of silvery blonde hair trailed behind her. A sailing ship filled with men from the British shores cleared through a haze of mist up ahead. The siren let a song pass her lips.
"Hoist the sail Matt." Matt's father was one of the best sailors in the land; he was training his son to follow in his footsteps. Matt grabbed the rope and gave it hasty tug, watching as their sail ascended. The mast seemed to scrape the star filled sky. He maneuvered past a cluster of jagged stones, green eyes intent on the ocean in front of him. But sound filled the salty air, echoing off of the still water.
It was song, but like nothing he'd ever heard before. It was beautiful and haunting, each note a masterpiece. By now he was lost in a haze of melody and mystery. Sweet harmonies completely entranced him, caught him in a web of sound. He was too trapped in the sweet song to notice his father's ship hitting a rock and capsizing.
The siren had been successful. She trapped the sailors with her sultry song, making them oblivious to their sinking ship. She put a small hand over a complacent man's mouth. He didn't even struggle as she pulled him down into the great depth of cold ocean water. She then moved to the next sailor, slipping a hand over his mouth. She looked him at more closely. He was young, no more than twenty five human years. Brown hair framed an angular face. But his eyes were what haunted the siren. A bright emerald green that seemed imprinted in her mind. She just couldn't bring herself to end the young sailor.
Gliding through the calm water, the siren placed the mysterious human on the rocky shore. She'd have to get back to her group quickly, as human and siren interaction outside of drowning was strictly forbidden. Humans had a history of wishing wrath and pain on sirens and vice versa.
Matt awoke on the stone shore of his village. Hazy memories came in a rush. A sweet melody. A sinking ship. Helpless drowning. A flash of lavender. Salvation.
With the presumed death of his father, Matt became hell bent on finding the thing that saved him. A pastime that kept his sense of loss and mourning away. Ravaging his way through every book and scroll he could get his hands on. But he had found nothing. The thick book created a cloud of dust as it hit his stone floor in exasperation. Leather slapped the hard floor again. Book after book, Matt read on until his eyes crossed and his legs went numb. He was suddenly filled with a strange sense of excitement. He had found what he was looking for.
"The Siren: a creature of the sea with the tail of a fish and body of a maiden. They thrive and rest under a full moon. With their seductive and alluring song, they've been known to make even the best of sailors sink their ships. They can be summoned when the moon is full with a pearl and the eye of a fish."
Matt scoured markets and traded. Begged until he had what he needed. Matt broke into a sprint, dashing for the stony shore. The light of a full moon shone down upon him. He placed the pearl and fish eye in the salty water that pooled around his knees. He waited yet nothing happened. The breeze of the ocean made him shiver. Matt thought he had done something wrong until he heard a faint splash in the distance.
The siren had been summoned. She felt the familiar pull as she glided through the dark water. Recognition hit her like a brick. It was the green eyed sailor she had saved. She watched as his face lit up with wonder.
Matt laid his eyes on the most beautiful maiden he'd ever seen. Long silvery hair cascaded down her pale back. Her eyes were a mixture of blue and purple that bore into his own. But it was her tail that left him awestruck. It was almost as if each scale held the light of the stars above them. Silver and wisteria swirled together in perfect harmony. He stood stunned.
The siren looked in amusement at the dumbfounded human. She giggled, "you're probably wondering why you aren't a carpet on the ocean floor. Believe me, I'm wondering too. There's just something about you. I couldn't bring myself to be the end of it."
He looked at her, unsure of what to say. "uh... thanks' he said sheepishly at a loss for words. "I'm Matt by the way." he held out a shaky hand. The siren grasped it, water soaked skin cold against his. "Luna" she smiled. "Meet me here every time the moon is full. But you mustn't be caught, for our interaction is forbidden."
With that she slipped soundlessly into the black mass of water. Matt fell asleep with a smile on his face and Luna on his mind.
As many moons came and went, the young sailor and the siren grew closer, bonding in secrecy. Each of them learned many things about the other. Matt never took sugar in his tea and loved looking at the stars. Luna had a fascination with the nature on land, she really loved bluebells. Matt would always bring her one just to see the petals match her curious eyes and watch her face blight up.
Luna would always press her lips to his and thank her sailor. They'd sit in each other's embrace looking up at the bright stars that lined the sky above them, both of them wondering how they'd been lucky enough to find the other. Then Luna would slip back into the water, never failing to catch his large hands in her own. They hopelessly and utterly loved each other. Every farewell after the moon disappeared into the pink horizon was harder than the next.
But Luna's fellow sirens had become suspicious. She silently swam through the water, trying not to wake the others in the group. Sirens only rested on nights of a full moon. She felt a sudden pain in the back of her head and the world around her spun into darkness.
Luna awoke bound to a rock, a dull ache pounded in the back of her head. She then saw her leader Malo. Her cold grey eyes carried the weight of a boulder in their intense gaze. "How's your little sailor boy?" Malo said with a sneer. "You know starfish are very obedient, great little spies too." Luna cursed her own stupidity. She was too caught up in her love struck stupor too check for any dangers.
"JUST DON'T HURT HIM, TAKE ME!" Luna wailed. She tried to keep the urgent emotion out of her voice but failed. Malo gave a sick laugh. "I won't have to after he sees what you've become.' A sadistic grin twisted her blood red lips as she began to chant "I velintaerumnas et dolores." Luna bit her lip to keep from crying out as white hot pain ran through her body. ' PoteniamMoti, feirimortale, feirimortale, feirimortale."
Luna shrieked, agony blurring out her surroundings. Where her tail used to be, were now two milky white legs. Gone with her tail was her ability to breathe underwater. She squirmed and thrashed, spastically trying to fill her lungs with oxygen but instead feeling the burn of salt water. She watched the moon shine through the haze of water above and watched it fade away. She became still limp. The siren was gone.
Matt became worried when Luna didn't arrive at their little spot along the shore. Panic filled him as he frantically scanned the water ahead. He caught a glimpse of something silver among the great expanse of the coast. "LUNA!" he screamed, running faster than he ever had before towards her. He splashed and pushed through the water.
He found her limp and lifeless, two legs replacing her once powerful tail. He cried out in anguish as the salt water dripping down his face joined the unforgiving ocean. It was a sick sense of irony, the one he loved most ended by the very thing that used to bring life to her.
In a haze of grief, he ran back to shore. He kicked his door open and flipped over two chairs frantically looking for any spell that could save the very person he lived for. The water in his eyes blurred the text of the old book, but he eventually found something nonetheless.
He ran back to her, splashing frantically through the water. He began to chant. "I pronostra uita mortali immortalis. I ultimam sacrificum." I give my mortal life for one of an immortal. I make the final sacrifice." His own life for hers. The world began to fade away. She'd be alright soon he thought with a teary smile. With his last breath he grabbed her cold hand. Into it, he pressed one final bluebell.