Skylar Hollingberry

I had never thought that keeping my identity hidden would be this difficult. The founder of the adventure club, Sam, actually called me a mermaid yesterday. Luckily for me, it’d seemed like he was joking. Okay, maybe I shouldn’t have made fried seaweed salad this morning and tell him it was a mermaid dish, but he doesn’t seem to see through me. Not yet anyway. Oh dear Poseidon, why does this have to be so hard?

We both ate our breakfast in silence while glaring at each other - like I could actually burn down the house, like I had already pointed out to him, I can control water - when we heard a knock on the door. Weird, I thought, since this place was kind of in the middle of nowhere. Sam thought it strange too. He pressed a finger to his lips, signalling for me to be quiet. No problem, I didn’t want my seaweed to cool off anyway. Yes, I might have a slight obsession with anything seaweed. Especially fried. Fried seaweed salad, fried seaweed sandwich, but I also enjoyed the occasional seaweed smoothie.
You might wonder how the hydra we can fry seaweed under water. Well, we don’t. I might have never been on the actual shore, but I have been on some rocks on the water, where we eat our meals. That was the closest thing to freedom I had those days.

I watched as Sam made his way to the window and peaked out of the curtains. He kept looking at whoever was at our door, but nothing in his body language gave away what he was looking at.

I jumped as something crashed onto the floor. It was most likely the door, since it wasn’t very stable. Let’s just hope that was an accident and the mysterious person wasn’t trying to break in and, well, try to kill us or something. My parents would kill me if that happened.

I got up quickly and went to meet our visitor. She was half-human/half-dragon which took me by surprise. I knew there were strange creatures on this earth, though I was mostly familiar with sea creatures, obviously. Oddly enough, she was a lot less frightening than the cyclops had been. Then again, her dragon form kind of reminded me of the sea serpent that protected our castle walls.
The girl had light brown skin that in some places was still covered in armour like scales and there were white feathers on her chest. Her hair was black and curly and two jet-black horns stuck out of it.

‘’So, tell me, what are you?’’

The girl looked hurt at my words. Crap. Had I done it again?

‘’I’m sorry,’’ I quickly apologised, realising that this wasn’t the Pacific Ocean Palace and that people really weren’t going to put up with me being rude since I wasn’t their princess. ‘’I didn’t mean it like that. It’s just…’’

The girl shook her head.

‘’It’s okay. I understand,’’ she fully changed back in her human form. ‘’I can’t control it that well yet. I didn’t mean to frighten you,’’ she glanced at the fallen door on the floor. ‘’or break down your door.’’

Sam shook his head. Apparently he had followed me to the door.

‘’Don’t worry about it. Broke it down myself quite a few times too.’’

There was an awkward silence. I really despised those. They always happened at home as well. My parents didn’t really know me that well and never knew what to say after they told me of my obligations. The servants didn’t really dare talk to me, since my father had forbidden it. My whole life had been surrounded by awkward silences.

‘’So… I’m Skylar, but you can call my Sky.’’

‘’Aasimah Khan.’’ the girl said, after which Sam introduced himself.

‘’So how did you find us?’’ he asked. I thought he still sounded a bit suspicious, but I couldn’t really blame him. After all, the girldragon- I still didn’t know what she was, which kind of bugged me, but then again, I wasn’t really planning on telling anyone I was a mermaid either - had showed up out of nowhere and it’s not like you could find our HQ that easily.

Aasimah Khan shrugged.

‘’I was just taking a walk and happened to stumble upon your building. I saw the sign and well, an adventure club sounds like my thing.’’

Sam grinned. He was clearly happy to have another member for his club. I myself was quite relieved as well. Two people going on quests together? We’d probably get under each other’s skin a lot.  

‘’So, what kind of skills do you have?’’ Sam asked.

Aasimah told us how she could speak Chinese, Hindi and then some languages that I can’t spell. She could repair anything - we’ll see - cook, sow, swim and ride a horse. Oh, and she could fly of course, since she was a were dragon and all. That also came with some strengths, she supposed. Well duh, Miss Obvious.

Sam let her join, obviously. He’d be crazy if he didn’t. I showed her around a bit and she was pretty cool. Until the dreaded question came from her mouth.

‘’So… What are you?’’ she jokingly said it at the same tone as I did.

No, no, no. What can control water and talk to sea creatures that isn’t a mermaid? Dear Poseidon, let her not notice that I’m sweating. A lot. Wait… I’m actually sweating? Wow, I didn’t know I could- Oh for the love of Poseidon.

‘’If you’d excuse me, I really need to use the bathroom.’’

Before she could even reply, I had already ran inside. Just in time, because before I could say ‘squidcrap’ I was l lying flat down on my face. I sighed and looked around me. Sure enough, my legs had changed back to my tail. I seriously needed to control this. 

The End

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