"Well...I'll help out" The words left my mouth before I had even realised I had said them. Everyone looks at me in shock. "What? I am not some kind of senseless animal you all seem to be. Aya seems to be like me. Doesn't want to be a mermaid. Why shouldn't she stay with me?" I then say defensively, unable to stop my cheeks from shining red.
"Thank you." Aya says, she looks like she is about to say more but Cindy interrupts.
"Yes, thanks Marina. Are you sure about this? What will your mum think? Remember that time you brought that homeless dog back?" She asks me. I narrow my eyes but smile, my mums reaction was hysterical. She had run around the house screaming that there's a rat in her room and asking for someone to kill it. It took me and Cindy a good hour and a half to calm her down enough to explain it is a dog. Not a large rat. I start to laugh, first a giggle, then hysterics as I remember my mums face when I asked her to keep it.
"Care to share the joke?" Denver asks me. I take in a large breath, attempting to hold the giggles, but I make a mistake. I look at cindys face. Flushed red with trying not to laugh herself. I collapse on the ground where I stood, literally rolling around laughing.
After what seems like an age and my sides are screaming at me to stop, I take in a breath to see the others cracking laughs as well.
"Okay then. One, Aya is not a dog. She can not be mistaken for a rat," I deliberately do not look at Marina, "two, mum knows about us, she is always insisting their is more, I can explain to her what has happened and three, we have that spare room that has nether been used" I somehow manage to get out.
"Good. That seems okay. What do you think Aya?" Fern asks her curiously.
"Are you sure? I am very grateful to you for doing this." She says quietly.
"I think we should get back to class." Owen says to us.
"What about Aya? She isn't in this school?" Fern asks us.
"I could take her home now. Introduce her to my mum. My mum can tell the school she is a cousin and her parents died. We can tell the school she is staying with us now." I tell them. < p>"Thank you. I am so greatful of this."Aya tells me, I just smile at her. "Cindy? could you tell our Mathis teacher that I went home Ill? Will we meet at the cove after school? Around five so we can get tea?" I conclude. Their are several nods as they all turn to leave. Cindy murders her thanks to the air around us.
"You going to come or sit hear bear feet all day?" I ask Aya.
I'll come, again, thank you!" She tells me after a seconds hesitation.
"No need to thank. I think you would have done the same if the situatioin was switched." I tell her as we turn to leave the school grounds.
I choose the longer route home so she doesn't have to walk over the stony pavements. We take the grassy hills instead as I explain to her about windows.
We arrive at my house vea the back garden. My mother is busy hanging the washing out.
"Hi Marina. Why aren't you in school? Who is your friend?" She asks, putting her empty basket on the ground.
"I am Aya. marina volunteered to let me stay here." Aya tells my mother.
"She is a mermaid. She's been living in the sea all her life. She ran away and doesn't have. Place to stay. I thought you would be ok with this. You are always complaining that the spare room is never used." I explain in more detail to my perplexed mother.
"Ok. That's fine. Come in girl, you look half starved" My mum says, switching automatically into motherly mode.
I smile encouragement at Aya as we walk into my house.