Ursula explains what really happened between her and Ariel.
If there is one thing I despise in this world is pretty little girls with pretty little voices. Always floating about, flaunting their beauty like it’s the world’s privilege to bestow their eyes upon them. It just isn’t fair. Not everyone was born as pretty little mermaids who swim around half naked and spend their time singing on rocks and making goo goo eyes at half dead sailors – which I am pretty sure is borderline necrophilia – no, some of us were born ugly.
I’ll admit, I am not the most beautiful sea creature in the whole ocean, but I have grown to love my own skin and tentacles. I was not always this confident though; there was a time at which I would have given anything to be beautiful. Then one day my mother told me to get off my butt and do something about it.
I did as I was told and soon after I found I had a gift. Magic. A real talent for it too, I could do most anything I liked; except make myself beautiful.
Don’t get me wrong, I was more than capable of making myself physically attractive, but something was missing to make me truly beautiful. A voice. A voice that sweetly caresses whoever hears and sounds like the waves upon sand and not rocks turning into sand. Without the voice I could only be half satisfied.
That is why I chose to use this marvelous gift I just happened to have been born with to help other poor unfortunate souls with low self-esteem and big dreams. Maybe if I couldn’t accomplish my goal, I could help others accomplish theirs, for a price of course.
Then one day she came in. Flowing hair, pretty face, and a voice. The voice. The one thing I lacked was owned by none other than the seventh daughter of Poseidon, Ariel.
“What can I help you with child?” I asked in my most welcoming voice. They poor child looked like she was frightened out of her mind.
“I – well – there’s this man,” she broke off staring at the floor, her cheeks a deep crimson.
“Ah, and you hope to make this young fellow fall in love with you?”
The child nodded.
“Say no more, I’ve got just what you need.” I dug through my potions cabinet eagerly, ready to make the trade. I knew what the bill would be, and I was ready to be paid. “This should do the trick; this love potion will make any little merman your little aquatic heart desires.”
“Does this work on humans too?”
“Humans? This man you love is a human?”
The girl nodded.
“Then this won’t do at all,” I threw the vile over my shoulder and went back to digging through my potions cabinet. “My dear if your lovely is a human than you must be human too.”
“Because dear, once humans get in the water they either sink or swim, not live.”
“Can’t we make him a merman?”
“And how do you suppose we go about that? Are you going to flop to his house, kidnap him and drag him down here to where I can make him a merman without him drowning on the way. No you have to change.”
“I guess I have no choice then.” The girl had a certain determination about her, a certain spunk that made me hate her more than I already did because she was everything I wanted to be. But then again, all I had ever wanted would be mine in a matter of minutes.
“Fabulous, now there is a matter of payment we must discuss before any transactions are made.”
The girl looked puzzled. “Payment?”
“Of course; maybe the daughter of Poseidon is living large but some of us have bills to pay and groceries to buy. But don’t worry, I don’t want much; just your voice.”
“My voice? But how will I speak to him?’
“Oh you’ll find other ways to communicate; you don’t need your silly old voice. Besides body language is about the only language human men speak.”
“Oh yes dearie, humans are completely different creatures than your kind. They’re purely physical beings who don’t value intelligent women or conversation. Trust me, as long as you keep that pretty little figure and bat those big green eyes, you’ll have him eating out of the palm of your hand. Oh and the spell will only last a human month, unless you can get him to fall in love with you.”
“Will that be enough time?”
“Of course, of course, have a little faith in your man.”
“What will happen if he doesn’t fall in love with me?”
“Well I haven’t really seen the side effects before but I do remember something about either just changing back into a mermaid or dissolving into sea foam; but I’m sure that won’t be the case dear. This is true love we’re talking about here, isn’t it worth the risk?”
At first I wasn’t sure if I had convinced her, but after a moment’s pondering she came around.
I won’t go into detail about how it all went down – just know I got the voice and she got the legs.
Now everyone knows the end of that story, but they don’t know the end of mine.
I successfully turned myself into a truly beautiful woman, I had thought I would get my happily ever after.
Every creature I came into contact with followed me blindly, hopelessly attracted by my good looks and beautiful voice like I had always wanted. But it was only my voice and looks they were interested in. No one cared for my thoughts and opinions, I was just a pretty music box to be shown and put on display.
It turns out being a lonely old sea witch is better than being a beautiful mermaid with a man.
My name is Ursula, and I was tragically misunderstood.