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Kaitei Niou 1

A young man who gave up swimming has met a merman.

~Ten Years Ago~

A young boy and his family were taking a break at the beach during their summer holiday. Even though it was the morning, the sun made the sand very hot, so its grit would burn your feet.

The kind mother, with her long brown hair, was watching the two little girls as they played in the shallows.

Farther off at the rocks was the tall father, his black hair wet from water-fighting with his two sons.

The father was talking with the oldest son, short black hair like his father, about how great school will be for him once it starts. The other son, with short brown hair, had wandered to the rocks farther away.

That son stopped, noticing something shining in the water. It seemed to be caught. Interested, the son climbed his way over to the small pool where the shiny object was. The glare of the sun made it impossible to see it, so he just reached down into the water and pulled out the object.

“What’s that you have?” called the father, coming over with the other son.

The brunette handed it to his father.

A golden mirror with a mermaid on the back. It was small and round, fitting in the palm well. Down from a ring was a red tassel. The man looked it over with interest. On the mirror’s surface was an engraved magical circle.

“Wow, very pretty,” the father said, handing it back to his son.

“Can I keep it, Papa?”

“I don’t see why not.” He smiled, his son smiling with him.

That night in the cabin, all were asleep in their beds but for the brunette son. He was holding the mirror in his hand, staring at the reflection. Like magic, the mirror would give off a faint silver glow as if from a candle.

As the son stared into the reflection, it shifted and changed to a young boy at his age with cyan blue hair and matching eyes, and fine white skin.

The son smiled, reading one of the words in the engraving. It was a language he couldn’t read, but the symbols looked like letters.

“Araiso,” he said with a smile.

The reflection seemed to smile back to him, just as softly.

~Present Day~

“Kasei!” called a girl’s voice. “Wake up! You forgot to do the chores again!”

A brunette teenager up in his bedroom shifted awake with a yawn. He rolled over, pushing his face into his pillow. A moment to relax and then he shifted his hand about searching for something in the covers by his head.

He lifted his head up, looking into the mirror’s reflection, now in his hand. He yawned and groaned to it, “You kept me up last night with your stupid glow…”

“Ka-sei!” the girl called again.

“I’m up!”

He got up with another yawn, pulling on some jeans and then a dress shirt. He ruffled his hair into place lazily, picked up the mirror and dropped it into his pocket, then headed out of his messy bedroom.

“You’re gonna be late for school, Aranie,” he said as he entered the kitchen.

His younger sister with black hair glared at him. “Oh please, I’m always on time.”

He covered his mouth with a yawn, “That’d be Su, who’s already left.”

“Fine, just don’t forget to do your chores.” She waved to him then ran to the door.

“Your braids aren’t even.”

“I’ll fix them when I get there!”

He watched after his sister sleepily for a moment, then shrugged and went to cook himself some eggs. After eating, he looked up when he heard someone come home.

“Kasei, you up?” called an adult man.

“In the kitchen.”

The man came in, his black hair gelled back, and sighed at the look of his son. “Why can’t you try to look productive? It’s only been one week since you graduated.”

“Yeah yeah,” he nodded mockingly as he pulled out a pack of cigarettes and then started looking around for his lighter.

“It’s on the microwave,” his father said, going to make himself some eggs.

“Why are you home early?” Kasei asked, lighting up his cigarette and taking a soft drag off of it.

“I actually have to shop for your mother’s birthday present,” his father said with a chuckle, scrambling the eggs about in the pan. “What are you going to get her?”

“A golden dipped rose.”

“… That was my idea.”

“Find another,” Kasei chuckled, heading out of the room.

“Ah, Kasei! Do your chores!” his father called after him.

“Sure thing.”

His father just sighed, knowing it wouldn’t be done.

And he was right.

This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than storiesspace.com with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © 2011, 2020 to Steffi Thomas. These characters are fictional; any relations to persons living or dead is coincidental.

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