They swam swiftly from the depths of the deepest oceans, from cities lost and waters unknown. They swam through waste, through oil spills, through seas that once thrived with colour and life but were now laid barren. Death littered the seabed, floated around them. The sea itself felt heavy and claustrophobic; it made breathing hard.

This angered them.

They’d remained dormant too long. Left it to humans too long, hoping they’d change their ways and choose life – not just for themselves, but for their planet. For their lands and their seas, their skies and the beautiful and wonderful creatures that inhabited them.

They’d given them far too much credit. Humans always were, and remain, self indulgent, spoiled babes. No respect for the life of anything around them. Living short lives driven by vain impulses and the desire to be on top no matter the cost.


Now the people of the sea – merpeople, the humans called them – were intervening. But they weren’t like those in storybooks.

They were far less human. Some of them were pale, so pale their skin and eyes and hair were near translucent. These were the guardians, the ones who patrolled the waters, kept an eye on things above. These were the ones who alerted their people, their armies, further below that it was time. And so the others came, driven by an unrelenting desire to avenge their world. Angels of the ocean.

They were the stuff of nightmares.

Shades of red so dark they were nearly black, eyes like the very pits of hell. Teeth as sharp as jagged glass and claws to match, more than capable of tearing flesh from bones.

Ryn was one such “mermaid”, a Queen beneath the sea. She sent groups of her people to travel the oceans. They were to attack, commandeer and secure any ship, boat and sea vessel they found. To stir fear, and swear their oath.

Earth was dying, and they were done sitting idly by. Their message was clear:
“The choice is yours. Change your ways, take care of the problem… or we will.”

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    1 year ago

    Good description of the guardians and their swim from the sea’s floor to its surface. Wonderful juxtaposition of angels and nightmares. 


    Lotchie Carmelo
    Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
    1 year ago

    Wow. A very beautiful fairytale, Emily. And I love the beautiful message of the queen of the sea, “The choice is yours. Change your ways, take care of the problem… or we will “. But I don’t know what they will do if the people don’t do the right thing. It’s also worrying because that message might include a warning for the people. So, it’s necessary to let us be responsible for… Read more »

    1 year ago

    A very powerful story, Emily. I’m surprised the merpeople haven’t come for us before now.

    Carrie OLeary
    Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
    1 year ago

    An excellent melding of fact and fiction in this story Emily. Thoroughly enjoyed reading it, and would love to see it extended even further. I’ll be very interested in reading the consequences if we humans don’t start to look after our little world. Very nicely done.

    Julie Harris
    Julie Harris(@julie-harris)
    1 year ago

    Whew! I wouldn’t advise messing with Ryn and her people. This story carries quite a punch, Emily, well-written and hard-hitting. I just wish it were true! In a way, it is, isn’t it?

    Marianna Pieterse
    Marianna Pieterse(@marianna-pieterse)
    1 year ago

    Emily, your story has a very powerful message. I can imagine that the merpeople had enough of what was going on above them. Not to mention the way humans pollute the oceans. I agree with Carrie, I would like to read more!

    6 months ago

    Emily, I loved this story when it was first published, and it is wonderful to see it featured again as part of this year’s Earth Day observance. Although we might feel helpless against such massive challenges, as writers we can continue to bring awareness that might shake people out of complacency. Your story does just that. Thanks again for sharing your talents with all of us.

    Margarida Brei
    Margarida Brei(@margarida-brei)
    5 months ago

    Emily, a must read about avenging merpeople. Your dramatic opening had me hooked from the first paragraph. If only there were a safety net available to fix our climate errors.

    Lotchie Carmelo
    Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
    5 months ago

    Emily, I am pleased to re-read after a year. Congratulations that it was featured again. I do really love this piece of yours. And I love to read more about the merpeople. That was very interesting and intriguing.

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