- by Abigail Shannon Chua
Wesley Methodist School Melaka

I flew over the water, my hand skimming the water's surface. I loved the water - it was so much better than our cities up in the sky. The water's surface shone in the sunlight, its cool touch greeting my hand. I sighed as I rose up high and plunged, stopping just before I hit the water surface. Actually we were prohibited from going anywhere near the water. People claimed to have seen the merpeople, the race that supposedly inhabited this watery realm. But to me that was just nonsense, since I frequented here and I had never seen one.

Just as I flew over the water, a shimmery torpedo shape appeared below the surface. All of a sudden, a mermaid burst out of the water, laughing as she was greeted by the water as she plunged back in. I could hardly believe my eyes. She was the most beautiful creature I had ever seen.

"Come and play with me!" she said in a rich melodious voice and giggled. I floated above her as she swam in circles around me. Her blonde hair cascaded over her shoulders in thick waves and her grin made me shudder a little.

"I can't. I've got to go," I said as I prepared to take off.

"Don't be a wimp," she giggled and splashed some water onto me. Some fell on my wings, making them heavy. I struggled to stay in the air. "Come here," she said in a hypnotic voice and motioned to me with a wicked expression on her face. I started to fly towards the water involuntarily. My mind screamed in vain at my body to stop.

"Yes, that's right. Come here," she smiled and I realised that other mermaids and mermen had started to group around us.

Suddenly, a merman threw a circle of rope around me and caught me, dragging me downwards. The rest followed suit and they cooperated to drag me down, letting out high-pitched laughs.

"Stop!" I cried out as I flapped my wings hard to escape. Suddenly, I felt a sharp pain in my left wing as one of them had speared it. Blood oozed from the wound and dripped into the water, turning it into blood red. I tried to ignore the pain and flapped harder just as they speared my other wing. I fell like a stone into the water, the cold water engulfing me. I struggled to keep afloat but my wings dragged me down. The merpeople circled around me menacingly. One of them took out a knife and sliced off one of my wings. I howled in agony as I watched the wing sink to the bottom of the ocean. The water around us had turned into a bloody red. I was weakened by the loss of blood.

"Help me," I implored as they started to pull me downwards. Unable to breathe, I started to drown. My mind was screaming for air but I was far from the water surface. As I was dying, I witnessed the watery realm of the merpeople - a beautiful city made out of shells and glass. As I watched the amazing spectacle, I closed my eyes and slowly drifted away into an eternal slumber.