“It’s you!”, he exclaimed, “You’re the temple maiden!”
The princess blushed and nodded. “I can’t believe we’re together again,” she cried happily.
Even the now-human mermaid couldn’t deny that this princess was beauty and charm incarnate; long flowing blond hair and light green eyes, with fair skin.
The marriage was immediately announced.
As news of the upcoming wedding spread throughout the area, the prince told his companion “You must celebrate this joyous occasion, for your dedication to me means more than you can imagine.”
The mermaid merely kissed his hand in respect. Her heart was shattered.
Not only was her beloved marrying another, but when the sun began to rise the morning after his wedding she would die and turn into seafoam.
Finally, the wedding ceremony took place in a huge cathedral. The mermaid walked down the aisle behind the bride, holding her train.
She did not hear the blessings given to the couple or the exchange of vows or smell the incense and fragrant oil burning near the altar.
All the poor mermaid could think about was all that she had given up and all the suffering she endured for the prince, and her impending death the next morning.
That night the reception was held on the ship. The prince and his bride danced together happily; he kissed her lips and she stroked his black hair with her delicate fingers.
Soon there were others who joined in on the festivities. The mermaid sighed sadly and danced for everyone, adoring eyes watching her every graceful move.
Like always it felt like she was walking and dancing on daggers, but it didn’t bother her anymore. An even bigger pain struck her in the heart and mind.
The music, dancing, and feasting continued well into the night after the ship set sail back for the prince’s kingdom.
At last, the royal bride and groom retreated into the purple tent set up on the deck. Soon the entire ship was silent. Only the mermaid and the helmsman were still awake.
The helmsman concentrated on his job of steering the ship on the higher deck. So the mermaid stood alone on the lower deck, staring at the sea and awaiting her demise.
All of a sudden, her sisters appeared in the waves.
The mermaid gawked in shock, their beautiful flowing hair had been chopped short! “Dear sister!
”, the eldest mermaid princess called, “We gave our hair to the sea witch in return for this magic dagger!” Then she tossed it up on deck, and her youngest now-human sister picked it up.
The oldest sister continued “Stab the prince in the heart with this dagger. When his blood splatters on your feet, you’ll become a mermaid again and return to your home in the sea.
Please hurry, the sun will rise soon!” Then all her sisters disappeared beneath the waves.
The mermaid tiptoed to the tent where her prince and his bride were resting. She pulled back the curtain and saw how peaceful and happy they looked together.
Despite her broken heart, the mermaid couldn’t bring herself to slay the prince even if it meant saving herself.
She rushed back to the side of the deck and threw the dagger as far as she could back into the sea. Then she began to climb over the railing.
But before the mermaid could jump overboard, she suddenly fell to the floor of the deck.
The poor mermaid was experiencing a new discomfort! Her abdominal muscles were contracting tightly, and she could also feel the skin stretching between her legs, followed by fluid coming out!
The mermaid gritted her teeth in agony as the sensitive skin continued to stretch and her muscles continued to contract and push downward.
If she still had her voice, she would’ve been screaming at the top of her lungs!
Before the mermaid knew it, she felt something slide out from inside of her, which was followed by the sound of what sounded like crying!
She began to pass out; before falling into another deep sleep the mermaid heard footsteps hurrying on to the deck.
Hours passed, and the young mermaid awoke in the same bed she was laid in upon her arrival at the prince’s castle.
Wait a minute…she was supposed to dead! The mermaid glanced around the room in shock and confusion. Sunlight was shining through the windows, so it was well past sunrise.
Yet somehow here she was, alive and well.
Then she realized something else; the mermaid felt something sucking on her breast! She sat up, and to her surprise she was cradling a human infant in her arms!
The infant, wrapped in a pink blanket, went on drinking milk from her enlarged delicate breast. The mermaid gently stroked the baby’s hair with her fingertips.
She noticed that although the hair was short, it was silky and light brown in color, just like hers!
After a couple more minutes of nursing, the baby looked up at the mermaid and gave her a bright happy smile.
It was then, she saw that the infant’s eyes were bright blue, just like hers! The mermaid smiled warmly at the baby and continued caressing its hair.
Just then, a pair of footsteps entered the room, followed by a familiar voice exclaiming “You’re finally awake; you had us scared sick!
” The mermaid turned her head, and saw the prince’s bride standing there. The human princess sat next to her on the bed, and glanced at the baby.
She smiled at her groom’s companion and said “It’s your baby girl! You gave birth to her on the lower deck of the ship a short time before sunrise.
It was quite a surprise to everybody, but we’re so glad you and the baby are alright!” Then she gave the mermaid a kiss on the cheek before going to find her new husband.
The new mother gazed lovingly at the infant in her arms. She kissed her new daughter’s forehead, and the baby giggled and smiled at her.
As they gazed into each other’s sapphire-colored eyes, the mermaid couldn’t help but worry a little bit. She was supposed to die and turn into seafoam earlier that very morning.
What changed that, and was it good or bad? Was she going to die the next morning instead? If so, what would happen to her newborn infant?
At last, the lovely bride returned with her groom. They smiled affectionately at the mute waif and her baby. Then the prince spoke to her.
“Two joyous occasions at once! The birth of your daughter was certainly unexpected, but the surprise is more than happy and welcome, especially at this already wonderful time.”
Then he asked his new wife if he could have some alone time with his mute friend. “Of course, dear.” She smiled warmly at the mermaid before granting her husband’s request.
After she closed the door, the prince took the young waif’s hand in his.
Then he whispered softly “Can I make a confession to you?
” After she nodded, the prince cleared his throat and continued whispering, “Last night, my wedding night, was without a doubt the happiest event in my life, aside from the time I found you.
Even though I finally took a wife last night,” he paused before continuing “I wasn’t a virgin. Before I even married her, I already lost my virginity. Or more like, gave away my virginity.
” He paused and his silent friend could feel his hand quivering. She looked into his dark brown eyes, as if to say, ‘it is okay, you can tell me anything.’
So then the prince went on with his confession. “When I found you on the beach, you were completely nude and unconscious. After a mental struggle, I…”, he trailed off.
The mermaid squeezed his hand and nodded her head. He gulped, then whispered “I couldn’t resist your beauty.
I took advantage of the situation, and…had intercourse with you while you were in that deep sleep. Believe me, I’m so sorry!”
The mermaid stared at him, wide-eyed and her mouth agape. But then she smiled and nodded, squeezing his hand again.
Her dear prince continued, “Time passed, and you became more precious to me every day, and don’t worry, you still are! I swore I would never harm you in any way again.
Early this morning when you delivered your daughter on the ship, a small part of me panicked. I thought maybe the baby was mine, and everyone would suspect something, including my bride.
Luckily the baby looks exactly like you, so far as anyone is concerned the father could be anyone.
We all know of the circumstances of your arrival, so another thing as far as anyone is concerned is that you were forced upon by another man,
either before I found you while you were still comatose or before you even lost consciousness. You were out cold for quite a while too, so everyone leans toward the latter possibility.
But I had to tell you the truth after you delivered the baby! Like I said, I’m terribly sorry for forcing myself on you when you couldn’t consent! Can you ever forgive me?”
She looked into his eyes, and could only see remorse along with all the affection he showed her since that first day. The mermaid smiled, then kissed his lips and his cheek.
“I take that as a ‘yes’”?, he asked, caressing her hand. She nodded, and the prince breathed a sigh of relief.
Then he asked “So this will stay strictly between the two of us, correct?” Again, his companion smiled and nodded, caressing his hand back.
The prince kissed her forehead and said “Thank you so much, you truly are pure of heart.”