Aquata Cove

Chapter 56: Starting Back On

As the men mumbled incoherent lyrics after God knows how long they've been singing, the water began to stir lazily around the three smaller boats. One of the men, skinny with wiry hair breaks his tired gaze from the boat's creaky floor to see the glimmer of a pearly sheen. A shorter, less groomed man also spots the graceful loom of low light below the surface. As the flow of water channels slowly around the boat, they hurriedly moved to the side of the boat to see the faint shimmer just as it sinks into the dark sea below. The less-groomed man and skinny gentleman look behind them out of a casual turn, to see quite a surprise hanging onto the rim of their small boat.

A maiden from the water. Her golden hair is soaked, but shines in the yellow beam of the lighthouse shining directly above her like an angel of heaven. Her lips as red as a rose, her eyes looking upon the boat of dirty, lost men with intriguing curiosity, unafraid of any one of them. "Lord, save me..." Said the less-groomed man in complete amazement.

"Hey, look," The skinny man pats another one of the men, "Look there." The alerted men turn around to see the beautiful female looking at them. An older man with a filthy, grey, scraggly beard stood right up, and savagely drew his dagger right out of his sheath.

"Y-You scare her off!!" The less-groomed man quickly seized the older man's arm to stop him from attacking the maiden.

"Rrrgghh! And good riddance!" The old man growled. The less-groomed man pushed him down, and looked once more to the beautiful woman, who swam away a few feet from he sight of the dagger. The maiden bobs slowly in the water as she looks at the men.

"... Can you talk?" The less-groomed man asked the girl as she slowly swam back to the little boat.

"Yes..." The maiden calmly puts her arms back onto the edge of the boat, and hangs on casually as the less-groomed man came up to her.

"You're beautiful." He said with a dumb smile as he crawls to her.

"Are you the one who sings?" She asked as her brilliant, beautiful tail waves slowly under the water, stirring tiny bubbles around the frilly membranes of her fish-like lower body.


"Are You My Jolly Sailor Bold?" The mermaid asks with a bemused smile.

"... Heh heh~" The less-groomed man nods with a modest expression on his face, "Aye that'll be me~" He answers bashfully.

"Scrum, compose yourself!" A couple of the other men yanked the less-groomed man away from the maiden.

"Oy!" Scrum struggled with resistance against his fellow men, "The right match has been given to me in my brief, miserable life. There's a truth in it," He explained, "But by God, I'll have it said that Scrum had himself a kiss from a PROPER mermaid!" He yanked his arms away from the others.

"~My heart is pierced by Cupid~" The mermaid began to sing, "~I disdain all glittering gold~" Scrum gradually made his way back to the beautiful siren, his lips mouthing the lyrics, as if he is being hypnotized by the maiden, "~There is nothing can console me ~But my jolly sailor bold~"

The mermaid's voice seems to echo as her melody plays upon the desires and lower the guards of the men.

"~Come all you pretty fair maids ~Whoever you may be~" Under the boat, a handful of other mermaids gracefully loomed upwards toward the surface. "~Who love a jolly sailor bold~" The men look upon the dark waters of the ocean, seeing several sea maidens ascending and slowly breaking the surface, "~That ploughs the raging sea~"

"~Myyy heart is pierced by Cupid~" The first mermaid hymned as the other mermaids slowly closed in on the boat, "~I disdain all glittering gold~" The mermaids rest their arms upon the ridge of the boat, gazing up at each man all around.

"~There is nothing can console me ~But my jolly sailor bold~" Even the old man with the rusty dagger was soon slowly unarmed by the glowing charm of the mermaids, and the singular symphony of the first singing mermaid.

"~Myyy heart is pierced by Cupid~" The mermaid continued with the same lyric as the boat is now surrounded by slow, wavering, pearly-orange fish tails that slowly wave in the sea. "~I disdain all glittering gold~"

"~There is nothing can console me~" The singing mermaid caresses Scrum as he leans in for her, his lips puckered as she slowly, and deliberately guides his face towards the water "~But my jolly sailor boooolllld~" The mermaid's eyes gazes longing into Scrums face even as her face sinks below the surface, without even breaking eye contact.

Scrum foolishly lets the mermaid pull his face into the water with her before he opens his eyes.

The mermaid's eyes lighten in color to emphasize her pupils, her skin breaks out in shimmering scales, and four sharp fangs grow from her upper and lower jaws as she hisses like a dangerous predator!

"AANNNNGGGGHHHH!" Scrum screams underwater right before the mermaid lunges at him!


"WHOA!" Merrick jumped as the old man jabs the mermaid with the boat's oar. The other mermaids flip into the water and swam in a fast, rabid raid, "Those are some fucked-up Pisciens!"

Adam laughed as he and Merrick watch Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, "Yeah, this kinda freaked me out when I first saw it too." Merrick is only wearing some snug briefs, while Adam is good on wearing some comfortable cotton boxers.

"I mean, look at them!" Merrick held his hands out as they watched, "They're blood-thirsty savages! One minute they're coherent, and the next, they turn into monsters!"

"I know, I don't really like how they portrayed them in this movie either."

"Which sucks," Merrick said, "Because they look a lot like me - their tails look exactly like mine, and the scales of their upper bodies are just like me. Appearance wise, these mermaids are pretty accurate, except for the hair, not all mermaids have long-flowing hair like that, if any at all. And from the looks of it, none of them have any webbed hands."

"And they kinda look like you too, right?"

"Yeah. Half Arctic Veil, like my Mother, and half Navyn Tail, like my Father. Though there are some species of merfolk that are just like these - One kind I know of is called Wave Streak merfolk. They're identified by their frilly bodies."

"Wow, really? So would you say these ones are just like them?"

"Close. As I said, the hair and webbed hands are a few points off. Besides that, these are supposed to be mermaids, but the way they're swarming those humans is actually a lot more related to a Siren frenzy. That's what else is kind of off about them too."

"You mean no other merfolk hunt their prey like that?"

"Nohhht like any kind of merfolk I'VE known!" Merrick scoffed, "Sirens rarely bother with weapons or tools because their two-tails provides them with overwhelming speed and agility, as opposed to us other merfolk, who prefer to use our tools, weapons, and strategy. Though there are some merfolk that are somewhat savage. Belinda's kind for one."

"Hey now!" Adam lightly swatted Merrick, "Would you ease up on her already?"

"No, really. Some merfolk have a higher or lower level of intelligence or sophistication. Belinda's species is in the lower margin - I've met her kind of Holsien, it's hard to communicate with them."

"Are you serious?"

"Yes. Frankly, I'm surprised that her speech is as understandable as it is now." After a while of watching the movie, Merrick tilted his head, "Something else I noticed."

"What, babe?" Adam asked.

"They're all females." He commented, "They keep talking about mermaids, mermaids, mermaids, but not one mention of any mermen. What's with that?"

"Well, all throughout the ages, the word 'Mermaid' tends to be more appealing and popular than 'Merman', so they just stick with it."

"But if they're all females, how do they even reproduce? At least in this movie."

"One of the pirates explained it before this scene," Adam replied, "Mermaids are all female, but when they need to make a baby, they go on land to have sex with a man, and once they get pregnant, they either just leave, or eat the man right after. Eventually, they give birth to a mermaid in the ocean."

"Ulgh!" Merrick slugged his tongue out in disgust, "That's so morbid and barbaric! It's like a Black Widow's method of breeding!"

"Hahaha, yeah! I can't imagine such a thing either."

"So, like, in the Pirates Of The Caribbean, are all mermaids this vicious and ravenous?"

"No. I never read the books, but I did a little research once. And from how it seems, the mermaids in that particular island, are man-eaters. Else where, in some other location in the sea, there's a whole other hierarchy of mermaids that are a lot more civilized than these ones."

"Still kind of disturbing to see these mermaids in such a demonic rage. Especially when they look so authentic."

"You're actually taking this a lot better than I thought you would," Adam said, "I was afraid you'd freak out from seeing this."

"No, not at all." Merrick dismissed, "A little irked, but I know this is just human illusion, as realistic as it may seem."

The two watched the movie all the way through, and ended with Jack and Gibbs walking along the beach with a huge sack full of bottled ships. Merrick smiles as he rolled over onto Adam, and crawled on the seductively over to Adam.

"So do you remember what you were dreaming about~?" He asked.

"About what, babe~?" Adam grins as Merrick sits softly on his lap.

"You know, when we first met? When that Siren entranced you with her song."

"Oh that," Adam breathed deeply as he stretched on the bed, "I dunno, that was years ago, sweetie. Back when I was a horny teenager."

"I know. That's why I'm asking, Fuzzbutt." Merrick nipped his nose.

"Gheh. Ok, I guess I remember bits of pieces of when I was under."

"Mmm~" Merrick deftly kisses Adam's cheek, rubbing his lips on his face, "Go ohn..." He slurs as he nuzzled him.

"As I recall... I had a big room made of satin." Adam smiles as he leans back, and lets Merrick nibble and lap his face, onto his chin, "And there was a bunch of sexy, naked men, only wearing thin loincloths that barely did anything to cover their junk.

"Mmmmhh~" Merrick pushes his smooth body onto Adam's form, a bulge already forming in Merrick's tighty-whities, "Tell me more..." He kisses along Adam's neck, and starts to nuzzle and rub Adam's hairy chest.

"Mmmmm..." Adam places a hand onto Merrick's flawless back, "My two exboyfriends were there... They were a just another couple of sex slaves who were all to eager to suck my cock, eat my ass, and they all begged me to fuck them senseless."

"Mmggaaahh..." Merrick huffs as he pushes his hard bulge against Adam's lap as he kissed his chest, "Did you...?"

"Oh yeah~" Adam smiles as his lover worshiped him sensually, "One by one, I fucked their asses nice and hard. And they loved it..." Adam closes his eyes as he felt Merrick's hand grab hold of his growing tent, "The way they begged me to cum inside them... My dick was so huge in the dream... Like, at least a foot long, and twice as thick..."

He moans lowly as Merrick's tender hand slips through the slit of his boxers, and began to massage and rub Adam's rock-hard member, "They squealed like deprived pigs..." Adam continued, making Merrick moan a little, "They couldn't stop begging me to fuck them with my enormous rod..." He moans as the fist shape in Adam's shorts moved up and down. "And God they were thirsty..."

"Nnhhhaaahh... Thirsty...?" Merrick murmured as he licked one of Adam's nipples.

"They wanted me... They needed to suck my cock... They all craved my cum... Every sex slave in the room wanted to drink my spunk. And I gave it to them..." Adam moaned as his chest fills up, and he grooves his hips in slow thrusts as Merrick stroked him, "I came again and again and again... I gave my cum all to them..."

"Was I one of your sex slaves...?" Merrick asks as he squeezed Adam's oozing member, "Did I get to swallow your hot, thick cum like all the rest of your slaves~?" Merrick's arm moved up and down as he masturbated his boyfriend.

"No..." Adam answered. Merrick stopped jerking him off, and looked up from kissing his chest.

"... I wasn't?" He asked in a moment's hesitation.

"No, you weren't..." Adam said, "After I fucked every slave boy in my harem, I wanted them to fuck me back. I wanted them to plow my ass one my one..." He shook his head, "But they wouldn't do it... They didn't feel up for railing me against the wall..."

"And..." Merrick said.

"When they said no... That they didn't wanna fuck me..." Adam pushed his moistened tent onto Merrick's abs, "You came in..." He added, "You came in, shining like the sun..." Adam slowly slipped his legs around Merrick's hips, and out his hands onto his back, below his shoulders. "I kissed you..." Adam keeps his eyes closed, "You kissed me... Then you took off my robe..." His legs brought Merrick's body closer into him.

"And you threw me on the floor... In front of all of my sex slaves..." Merrick moans longingly as he pushes his tight brief-clad erection against Adam's tent, "You pinned me down... I was helpless as you forced me on the floor, and you made me want you so much..."

Merrick's hand interlaced with Adam's, "Then you fucked me..." Adam's ankles hooked as Merrick began to dry-hump him, "Oh God, you fucked me like a wild animal..." Both dicks throbbed as Adam's low, guttural voice drove them insane, "Fffffghod, you fucked me hard, you shoved your raging cock into my ass..." Adam moans as they both felt like getting wild and randy, "You made me scream for more... The more you ran you dick in my ass... The more I needed you to stay inside of me..." He began to whisper as Merrick could barely contain himself. Both of them were bursting at the seams.

"Fuckme...!" Merrick hissed in a fit of intensity. Adam shoved Merrick away, and forced him down onto the bed, before yanking Merrick's sweaty undies down below his jiggly bubble butt.

Adam grabs the bottle of lube, and just poured it onto the crack of Merrick's ass. He gasped as the cold gel seeped into his crevice, but moaned out as Adam's hand dove in to rub and molest his slippery crack. "Awwl~ Ooohh~" Merrick moans and shudders as he feels Adam's hand glide in and around his boyfriend's vulnerable parts. Merrick's back curved and gasped as Adam fumbles with his oh-so-soft ballsack, before diving up into his crevice. Adam moans as he rubs the access lube all over Merrick's very smooth butt, almost polishing it to a high sheen as he digs his fingers into that crack or rubbing and groping around both cheeks. Adam pulls his boxers off, and aims his throbbing cock directly for Merrick's shiny, pink hole.

"I wanna be your slave..." Merrick moaned, his own penis oozing underneath him, "I wanna be your slave..." He whimpers, "I wanna be your fucking-" He eyes clench shut as he felt a thick force push into his anus, "UHHHH!"

"Nnh! Aww yeah~!" Adam grunted as his cock slips into the very tight tunnel. He slides his dick backward, and pushed back into him.

"OOoohhhh!" Merrick's upper body arches like a howling wolf as he feels every throbbing inch bury deep inside his rectum. He pushes his bottom back to grind against Adam's wiry patch. Adam bites his lip as he lays himself on top of Merrick's flawless body.

With his cock still lodged inside of Merrick's very hot ass, he digs his arms underneath Merrick's chest, and bends his knees to nestle himself upon Merrick's back. His hips slowly start to move back and forth as he feeds his thick, hard tool into Merrick's well-oiled entrance.

Adam moans as he rocks his hips as he rolls his tongue onto Merrick's neck, licking along his tender flesh, tasting the small droplets of sweat on Merrick's skin. Merrick closes his eyes as he pushes his butt against Adam's pelvic region, feeling strangely relaxed and aroused from his lover licking him slowly. He moans as light drip slides from his golden hair, down his forehead, and off his nose.

Each entry into his mount forces a moan out of Merrick's throat. His own dick throbs against the bed as he feels his man push and pull into his rear. His hands grip the sheets, feeling as if his body can be flown into a whirlwind at any moment, more so because of Adam's strong arms clinging onto him as he pushes back and forth into him.

Merrick's toes curled as his balls tingled a little, pinching back an early orgasm from all of the heat and passion being injected into him with every dive Adam's member implants from his movements.

"O-Oh gohhd..." Merrick's muscles weaken as Adam slowly elevated in sliding his dick back and forth into his hot, slick hole.

"Aw yeah, you're so getting it, babe~" Adam murred as he humped into his horny boyfriend. Merrick's cock throbs and oozes like a faucet as Adam's wood pushes deep into his starving tunnel.


"Ugh..." Syrinx holds a cold pack to her forehead as she sits back on a chair. She feels very hot and tired today, "We've looked all over this freakin ship, and not one single trace of him." A sheen glints off of the black windows of her sunglasses.

"He's probably packing up his luggage in his cabin, babe." Kevin replied, "We make port in about 10 minutes, we're leaving any minute now."

"Typical that when avoiding him, he finds me around the corner. Now when I look for him, he's nowhere on the damn ship." She complained, "Gah... I feel like I'm gonna melt flat on the deck any second."

"Why can't merfolk sweat again?" Kevin asked.

"Because our bodies ARE the water," Syrinx moaned as the sun blazes down, "If we start sweating, it's a sign of us getting in very in health. And that's bad; it's almost like cancer or leprosy for us... Only a LOT less contagious and LOT more curable."

"You're not sweating now... Are you?" Kevin turned on his seat, and felt along Syrinx's arm.

"No, I'm fine... It's just so freakin hot today!" She whimpers, "The more I can't find that damn merman, the more annoying he seems to be. I almost wish I COULD sweat, because it feels like a freakin oven out here!"

"Trust me, no you don't, it's gross sometimes. And uncomfortable."

"Why? You sweat all the time, and you're only half as disgusting for the most part."

"Ugh, c'monnn, babe." Kevin rumbles, "It's too hot for your bitch-banter."

"And for that..." Syrinx groaned as she turned around on the seat, slowly getting up, "No sex for a... Week."

"Ughh... Fiiiiinnnneee. It's too hot to fuck anything anyway."


"Ohhh! Ahhh! AHH! OHHH!" Merrick whines and moans as Adam's hips pummel into his tight asshole. With one hand clutching to the sheets, his other hand is tucked under his body, masturbating as he feels his man fuck him hard and fast.

"Say you want it." Adam grunted as his lower body ricocheted back and forth on top of his moaning lover, "Fffff! Say you want it!"

"I want it! I want it!" Merrick moaned out as he can barely focus on rubbing his dick, only managing to absent-mindedly squeeze his hand around it.

"Fu... Ahh! Ohh yeah!" Adam huffs as he thrusts his manhood into Merrick like a jackhammer, "What do you want, babe?? Tell me what you want!"

"I wanna be your cockslave~!" Merrick whined out as he can only take the crucial pounding from behind while he stroked himself off.

"No, babe!" Adam swiped his hand to deliver a quick spank to Merrick's bouncing bottom, making him gasp and whimper, "Try again..." Adam moaned as he continued to rail erratically into Merrick's hole.

"I want you to fuck me," Merrick answered weakly as he rubbed and squeezed his member, "I want you to fuck me everyday until I pass out~!"

"Fuck, nnno!" Adam growled as he spanked Merrick's other lubed buttcheek.

"AHHHhhhoooohhh~!" Merrick moaned as his body trembled from Adam's overpowering force.

"Alright..." Adam huffed as he stooped down a little, and began to give slow, deep thrusts into Merrick, "Tell me what you need~"

"Your cooooooocccckk," Merrick moaned in a hesitant push inside his anus, as if he was waiting for a chance to think clearly. Adam pulls back, and slowly impales him again with his hard dick, "I need iiiiitt~!" Merrick added from another slow thrust.

"U-UHHH yeah..." Adam moved his lower body back and forth, forcing Merrick to be pushed forward along with him, even backing up as Adam pulled his dick to the edge og his sphincter before shoving it back in.

"Ghhh! Ahhh~!" Merrick's arm jacked quickly as his prostate was probed once again. His eyes clench shut, his mouth gapped the squelching sound of his pre-soaked hand squished around his dick, "AWW! OHHH!" Merrick's buttcheeks clamped around Adam's rock-hard dong as Merrick's own rod convulsed in his hand, and felt a gush of wet heat spill onto his palm and in between his fingers.

"God, you feel so amazing when you cum..." Adam moaned as he still humps into his blonde boyfriend. Something about release somehow loosens Merrick's ass in a way just feels so warm and comforting.

Merrick moans as he lays down, spent, and awaiting for Adam's hot, melting load to erupt inside of him. Though really, he also likes Adam being inside him - the closeness it creates as Adam shares his body with him, somehow welcoming each other in a very intimate, personal way.

"Mmmm... Hoohhhh yeah..." Adam thrusts slowly and deliberately into Merrick, just loving the relaxed muscles surrounding his member. A couple of minutes later, Adam pushes his thick, hairy crotch into Merrick's bottom, and paused as his whole body tenses up. He grunts, and moans wantonly as his balls tightened, and flooded his penis with hot, thick love, and poured it into the hungry ass of the merman.

"Ooohhhhhhhhhhhhh" Merrick whines with pleasure and exhaustion as he feels Adam fill him up with his gooey seed. Adam groans as he slowly pulls his tired penis out from Merrick's well-used asshole. They pant and quietly murr as Adam lays his hairy, moist body lazily on Merrick's sweaty frame. Both of them close their eyes peacefully as their hearts softly beat inside them, full of contentment and satisfaction as they slowly enter into the coma of the afterglow.



Both men jump from the sudden roar of the foghorn.


Adam and Merrick huffed with an annoyed groan from the realization that they now have to get up instead of cuddling.

"Dammit..." Adam took a deep breath, and crawled to the edge of the mattress. He groans as he lazily moves his legs over the bed, "Alright... Lets get going." He stood up as Merrick rolled onto his back.

"Can't we stay a little longer? She said we had two hours." Merrick complained.

"Naw, we better get going." Adam replied as he squat down to stash a few discarded items and clothes into one of the suitcases.

Merrick puts a hand on his chest, and realized that he's... Wet? He brought his hands up to his face to see, and saw a thin layer of moisture on his skin. He sat up, and felt his smooth abs a little, realizing that he's slightly wet around his body as well.

"... Adam?"

"Yeah, babe?" Adam idly asked as he packed up their items, carefully wrapping up his Golden Lover award, and placing it in the velvet box he was given to store it.

"... Did you put any water on me earlier?" Merrick asked, starting to see his whole body feels a little greasy and stuffy, even feeling his hair, he sees that it is half soaked in liquid.

"No. Why?"

"Because I'm kinda wet... But I'm not transforming." He noted that he's not wearing his scale necklace. Adam turned to look, and felt and rubbed Merrick's shoulder.

"Ah, you're just sweaty, that's all." Adam dismissed.


"Yeah. See, when people exert energy, the skin starts to make its own water in order to cool itself off. You've seen me sweat all the time, right?"

"Yeah... Sort of..." Merrick felt around himself, feeling this new sensation around his. He doesn't like it.

Merrick stood up, and walked to the bathroom sink. He held his hand under the faucet water, immediately transforming his hand into blue and silver webbed flesh. "... Still a fish..." He muttered before he picked up his necklace, and put it around his neck. Adam came up behind him, and kissed his cheek.

"C'mon babe. Lets take a shower." He gave a playful pat on Merrick's bottom before going into the cramped cubicle, and turned on the showerhead. Merrick shook his head and just placed it out of his mind, and turned to follow Adam into the shower...


"Ah! Hey!" Syrinx and Kevin slowly make their way in the crowd, still on deck as everyone edged to the exit-docks of the ship, "God, why are gay events so damn crowded??"

"Then why did we go to a gay cruise in a first place?" Kevin asked, "We're not even bi, and we're pretty much strictly monogamous."

"Not the point!" Syrinx dismissed. Kevin rolled his eyes as they went, turning his head, and seeing a familiar shiny blonde head along with a dark-haired guy, a black man, and a shorter, slender Mexican dude are greeted by a young Asian woman and man, along with a young Asian teenager as well. They hug each other as everyone else filed in their own directions.

"Hey! There he is!" Kevin slapped Syrinx's shoulder, and pointed to the land. She turned, and spotted them. No doubt about it, that blonde twink getting hug-tackled by the Japanese teenager is the same merman that's been on this cruise!

"Hey! Hey you!" Syrinx shouted, but to absolutely no avail, as they are surrounded by chatty people, "HEEEEEY! BLONDIE!" She yelled as the merman began to leave with his friends, "WAAAAIIIT! HEEEEEEEEEEEY!" People began to turn as she shouted louder, "STOOOP! HEEEEEY, FISHBOY!!!"


"Hm?" Adam turned around, "Captain?" He looked, but couldn't find the fat old boss of his anywhere.

"What's wrong, Adam?" Yuri asked.

"You see the Captain anywhere?" Adam replied as he looked all around, "I thought I heard someone say, 'Fishboy'."

"I think you just wanna get back to work." Jamal said, "It's been like, what, a month and two weeks since you actually got in, right?"

"Yeah..." Adam groaned as they went, "I'll be surprised if he actually keeps me after all this time away from my job."

"He gave you the time off himself, didn't he?" Yuri said, "It's not like you skipped on purpose. The police already reported to him that you were abducted for the month that you were gone."

"Yeah, and then I go away for ANOTHER two weeks for a cruise."

"That was on your Vacation Days." Yuri said, "According to him, you had a slew of vacation time that you never really bother to touch. He was at least reasonable enough to pardon the previous month anyway."

"Yeah, but I need to get back to work yesterday." Adam said, "That whole month, I went without working, and I only got paid for half of it."

"Sadly, yes. We're doing fine right now, Adam," Yuri reported, "But yeah, things are going to be a little tight right now financially."

"Wow, you really on top of stuff, gurl." Jamal admired.

"We all need to be on top of things, Jamal," Yuri said with a snide leer, "I just happen to do it clothed and sober."

"Aw snap!" Jamal snickered.

"Nnnhhh..." Merrick winces as he tries to avoid Fumiko, Ryo's little sister as they went to the parking lot. After a whole month missing, and then another two weeks at sea, Fumiko INSISTED that she come with Yuri and Ryo to welcome them home.

Nothing's changed at all with this girl, she's still Merrick's stalker. Even as he walks around the group, pretending to take in the sights of the port, Fumiko keeps trying to hold his hand. Merrick winces as he can sense her coming with his Triton intuition, and move away from her just before she can get him.

Ryojin snickers as he notices his sister still trying to get Merrick to like her. He hasn't even bothered to tell her that Merrick is gay, let alone what homosexual really means.

"Rrrggh" Merrick grimaced, "Ryojin, could you please tell your sister to stop it, please??"

Ryo chuckled as he nodded to the young school girl, "Fumiko, kocchi no ki te kudasai."

Fumiko pouted as she looked at Merrick, and went away from him. He grumped as he then went back to Adam, who then took his hand into his.

Fumiko frowns and fumes, 'Why does he get to hold his hand, but not me?! His true love?!'


"HEEEEEEEYYYYY!!!" Syrinx called, but it was no use. "Dammit."

"Well fuck." Kevin said as his shoulders slumped. "I don't suppose you caught his name, did you?"

"No, I didn't." Syrinx said as she scowled, "I THINK I know is boyfriend's name though. I think it was... Adam? Adam Brian, I think? Adam Bright?" She pondered, "Adam B-Something..."

As they made their way through the crowd, Syrinx groans silently as a dizzy spell started to waver inside of her skull. Her skin feels a flash of mild heat, despite the warm weather. She coughs a little before bringing her water bottle up to sate the dryness in her mouth.

The dehydration is getting worse and more frequent. She's almost at her limit. Her hazel eyes looked toward the direction of where the blonde merman disappeared.

That's just one more reason why she's starting to think she should have talked to him sooner.

---The Next Day---

"You're actually writing a lot better than I thought you would," Yuri said as Merrick writes his home address on a sheet of paper, "You really taught yourself to write only a few days ago?"

"I wouldn't say that," Merrick said just as Adam came in, pulling on his leather jacket, "It just sort of... Came to me when I signed up for a contest. Like I already knew how to write."

"Morning, babe." Adam said as he came over and kissed his ear and feeling through his golden hair.

"Morning, Adam." Merrick replied. Adam looked over the few pages of paper laid out before him - it appears to be some official-looking documents.

"What's that you got there?"

"It's a job application." Merrick said. Adam's eyes brightened from that.

"An application? To where?"

"Lovers - that sex shop Nick works for. Yuri's helping me fill it out and... Creating something called a resume, was it?" He asked as he turned. Adam shifted his eyes to Yuri's laptop, and saw a Word Document open with Merrick's name, address, the Social Security Number Erin arranged for him, along with a number from a cell phone Jamal purchased for Merrick 3 months ago, but has never used.

"He's actually doing better than I expected," Yuri said, "He's only written one other time on the cruise, but his penmanship is already as good as mine."

"Wow, that's great, honey!" Adam bent over and gave Merrick a hug, "I'm so proud of you, sweetie!"

Merrick smiled happily as those strong arms pressed around him. "I have heard that money is going to be a problem around here..." Adam blinked and looked down, "I want to do something other than doing chores and waiting for you to come home."

"Aw sweetie..." Adam kissed his head affectionately, "You don't need to wor-"

"Yes, we do, Adam." Yuri said, "I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but I've been counting the numbers for our finances, and things are going to be tough around her for a while - this month, maybe even two if we're unlucky. Jamal's already picked up some extra shifts at the Dream Waltz, and I've been moonlighting at the local clinic for some extra scratch."

"I want to contribute, Adam." Merrick said as moved his head back to look up at his lover, "I can do so much more than just vacuuming and washing dishes. Besides, I want to go to the Lovers store a lot often to see what they got."

"I suppose you're right, baby." Adam said as he kissed him again, "Speaking of which, I have to get to work. First time in a month and a half." He kissed Merrick's lips one more time, before picking up his helmet, "Good luck, babe. See you later, Yuri."

"Bye, babe!"

"Later, Adam." Yuri said. Soon, the rumbling of Adam's motorcycle roared to life, and rippled away to the distance. "Ok, now for references..."


Kevin slips on his uniform polo shirt, sporting the colors of red and white in a checker pattern, getting ready to head for his job as the Assistant Manager at the Checkeroni Pizzeria of Italian food and classic board and arcade games.

"Off to work, Pizza Boy~?" Syrinx asked with a teasing smirk.

"Why do you gotta be such a ball buster?" Kevin asked as he sees his girlfriend lounging around on the couch.

"How else can I make sure you worship me~?" She said with a devious smile, "And besides it's fun."

"And don't you have to go to work too?" Kevin flopped one of the throw pillows onto the mermaid's face.

"*Pffffhh* No," She tugged the pillow off from her face, "I still have until tomorrow before I go back to the coffee shop." Syrinx yawned for a few seconds, before shaking her head. Kevin notices that she's looking a little more... Pale than usual, not to mention that she looks tired, even after sleeping for half of the day.

"You ok, sweetie? You're looking a little down there."

"I'm fine..." She groaned as she lay back, "Just tired, that's all."

"You just woke up a couple of hours ago," Kevin said, "Maybe I should stay home and make sure-"

"I'm fine, Skull-Face." Syrinx groaned, "I think I might be catching something..."

"I thought merfolk don't catch colds." Kevin said with a quirked brow.

"That's just something I say to poke fun at humans." She dismissed.

"Ok, but... You sure you'll be-"

"Yes, Kev! I'm fine already," Syrinx persisted, though her dizziness is suggesting otherwise.

"Ok, ok, take it easy, Breezy." He replied, "I just worry about you..." He looked down on his girlfriend with a calmed look, "From the looks of you, I think it's about that time again..."

"... Probably..." Syrinx responded, "I'm not at my limit yet though. I'll be ok for a while longer."

"Ok, baby..." Kevin leaned down, and kissed her lips a few times, "I love you."

"I love you too, Beanstalk."

Kevin snorted as he stood up, and grabbed his keys, "Take it easy, baby. I'll see you tonight."

"Thanks for the warning." She replied flatly as her mate walked out the door, and left for work.


"Wait, Captain!" Adam said as he followed the old, pirate-like man.

"Can it, Fishboy," Captain dismissed as they went, "That's the way things have to be for now."

"But I'm supposed to be full-time!" Adam said, "Why am I only working 25 hours this week??"

"Look!" Captain snarled as he turned around, "I've run the numbers by several times. The prices of everything have gone up, and it's just one huge bitch of a fuckin net! If Damien was still here, he coulda been able to step around. As you might know." He gave Adam a quick leer, reminding him why he had to fire a highly efficient but homophobic bookkeeper.

Adam grimaced, but persisted, "Look, but since that whole month fiasco of mine, me and my roommates are having some financial troubles. I need to work more hours!"

"Then git another freaking job!" Captain loudly answered, "I been hearin nonstop bitchin since this whole hour-cut thing started!" Captain sighed, and shook his head, "Look, fishboy, I'm havin to cut everyone's hours - hell, I even thought about layin off a few of the other fishboys, but I ain't got the patience to think about hiring and trainin new fishboys in the future."

Adam sighed, "... Fine, sir..."

"I can work with yer schedule if ye git a second job, but I can't give ya any more hours." He pat Adam's shoulder, "I'm sorry, Adam. It's outta my hands right now, and this is the best I can do without kickin anyone out." Adam begrudgingly nodded, "Now git to work."

"Yes, Captain..." Adam muttered as he turned and went to load up the first tank-cart while Captain went to tend to a few things in the office.

~~~Hours Later~~~

"Hello, I'd like to turn in a job application?" Merrick said, dressed up in somewhat casual/formal clothing - Yuri said most places might feel better about hiring him when he looks presentable to begin with.

"Alright." Sasha said. The British chick peered at Merrick a little closer, "Hold a moment, do I know you?"

"Yeah. A long time ago, I did some modeling for you in a bunch of sexy thongs."

"Aw yeeaaahh!" Sasha beamed and nodded, "I rememba you!" She glanced at Merrick's application and freshly resume, "Aw yes, you're Merrick, aren't you?"

"Yes," Merrick nodded, "I was hoping I can have a job here? This is... Sort of my first time having any kind of job."

"I see..." Sasha said, "Well, I believe we arh hiring at the moment, if you'd like, I may spot you for an interview right now with the managah."

"A-Ah, yes, that'd be great!" Merrick agreed with zeal.

"Right then," Sasha got up, taking Merrick's forms with her, "This way, and I'll tell the managah you're waiting for him when he's done with his break."

"Thank you so much!" Merrick quickly followed her to the backroom. This is going a LOT better than he previously thought.


"Mmnnnhhhh..." Syrinx whines as her hand rests on her forehead, "Why won't the room stop spinning... Don't tell me those Pixies at the cruise have delayed backlash..." The mermaid pulls herself off the couch, and walks slowly to the kitchen.

The more steps she walked, the more her surroundings blurred all around her. She grimaces as she tries to push every effort just to feel her feet press on the tiles of the kitchen floor. Syrinx feels herself sway before her hands clapped onto the nearest surface, trying sorely to stay balanced.

"God... Feels like gravity went right out the window..." She whimpers as her vision begins to fail. A wave of heat surrounds her skin as her heart pounds in her chest. Her whole body shakes terribly as she edges along the kitchen counter towards the refrigerator, virtually blind, just two breaths from fainting.

She finally gets to the fridge, her eyes still spinning as she pulls at the handle, and opens the cold door. Syrinx gasps as she falls to her knees, unable to keep herself up from just opening the door. It barely occurs to her that she forgot to grab a glass to have some filtered water, but that doesn't seem to matter at all as she fumbles on the floor.

"Nnnhh... HhhHhhHhhHhh..." The poor girl starts to wheeze as her fingers swipe at the plastic tub of cold, clean water, just a button-press away from her.

Her arms shake as she quickly loses strength, and finally collapses on the kitchen floor. She heaves pitifully as she is unable to move anymore, paralyzed with weakness. Her eyes close as everything fades away from her.


"Aw man," Jamal says with his cellphone to his ear, "That really sucks." He's currently on lunch, and he is talking to Adam in regards of his hours getting cut in half.

"I know," Adam said on the other side. "Yuri says that we can barely scrape by this month, but we're not going to have much money for groceries."

"Hmm... I think I got an idea."

"Ok, shoot. Wait, are you going to suggest I apply to be a stripper at the Dream Waltz? Because I'm not down for that."

"Psh, no man!" Jamal said, "But we are always lookin for performers to do fill in spots. I saw you on the cruise when you and Merrick got back together, you good."

"Oh- Wha- Come on, Jamal, I'm no performer. I was just trying to make things right."

"I'm telling ya man, you're a hella lot better than some of the people we got goin here."

"I don't know..."

"Look, it's a good deal," Jamal said, "For free-lancers, management pay after the performance, not a lot though, maybe like, $100 for one night. But if they like what they see, they might ask you to apply for a regular part-time job."

"What, no one works full-time there?"

"Not the performers. They come and go, that's why it's only part-time fo dat."


"C'mon, man. It's good money worth makin, and we don't got a lot of good performers lately."

"... Ok... I guess I can give it a shot." Adam conceded.

"Bitchin!" Jamal said with grin.

"So how soon can I apply to sign up?"

"I can prolly get one-a the bosses to have a phone-interview today. What time you get off?"

"Around 5 O'clock today - in about an hour."

"I thought you said yo hours were cut in half?"

"This is the last 8-hour shift I'm going to have until further noice." Adam said gloomily.

"Ah, aight. I'll let'em know you interested, see what we can do."

"Ok, sounds good."

"Aight, later man."


Jamal hung up, and pocketed his phone. "YO!" He howled, "JER-RY!!!"


Merrick waits patiently in a small, secluded room, sitting at a round table, with one other singular seat for the manager to come and interview him. He feels totally nervous about this whole thing, one might say that he's reluctant. He brings his arm up, and wipes off a dab of sweat from the side of his head with his sleeve.

All this time, he's avoided looking into finding employment because it would mean giving up his former life as a merman, and giving into a foreign existence as a human. Honestly, he still feels disdain for even doing this. He'd rather go to Atarah for visit, maybe swim in the river with Oyana the bunyip.

As much as he wants to hold on to what's left of his identity, now is no longer the time to indulge in waning pride. It's time to grow up, and let go to the idea of returning to the sea. He must let go of Merrick the Piscien Triton, and enter the new way of Merrick Piscien the workingman.

He grimaces as he dabs off another blotch of sweat from his head, "Ugh..." He wiped it his palm on the side of his shirt, "Disgusting..." He remarked on the sweat.

The door opened, and Nick walks in, stopping as he sees the merman, "Oh hey, man!" Nick said as he pumped his fist with Merrick.

"Nick, hi!" Merrick greeted back.

"What's up, man?"

"I decided to apply for a job here. I'm waiting for someone called the 'Manager' now."

"Ah, no kiddin man!" Nick said with a bright smile, "That sounds awesome! This is a great place to work, trust me."

"Yeah... Yuri says we're on something called a 'Low Budget'. I'm still not so sure what that means exactly, but it's bad. So I want to try and help."

"Muy bien!" Nick nodded, "Good luck, man, I hope you get hired!" He clapped onto Merrick's hand, holding it for a tight grip.

"Me too. Yuri says it's hard to land a job at all, especially with someone like me."

"Aight man." Nick said with a confident nod. He then pulled the other chair back, and say in it, "Ok now-"

"Wait," Merrick said, "Isn't the manager supposed to sit there?"

"Kinda, yeah." Nick said with a grin. "Take a look, man." Nick tapped on the shiny gold-colored tag on his uniform shirt. Merrick squinted as he recognized the name 'Nick Rodriguez'. Merrick slowly sounds out the word above.

"Ma... Na... Ger??" He looked up at Nick in bewildered awe.

"Aight, first question," Nick says with a grin, "What can you tell me about yourself?"


Kevin pulls into the drive-way of his house - his darn boss INSISTED that he'd go all the way back to his house just to retrieve an old Pacman trophy from back in his childhood days, she said she'll make up for his break.

"Nicole REALLY couldn't wait till tomorrow? She has to have me get the freakin trophy now?" Frankly, he doesn't even think it's the trophy she wants. His boss just likes to jerk the employees around once in a while, not that big a deal. As if he doesn't get enough of that from Syrinx already.

He grumbled as he stepped out of his car, and threw the door closed. He entered the house and strode though, "I'm back, honey!" He called out, "Just for a sec though, I just have to pick something up."

There was no response. Kevin went into the bedroom, and stepped into the closet for a moment. "Think it's in one of these... Ah, here we go." Kevin took the old, pixel-stylized goblet with Pacman mounted at the rim on top.

"Ok, gotta go." Kevin said as he walked out of the bedroom, "Can I get a kiss before I take off?" He asked. Still no response, "... Babe?" He called. Kevin looked around, trying to find his girlfriend with just a glance here and there, "Syrinx?"

He wandered for a few more seconds, before spotting her in the kitchen, "Syrinx??" He strode, and gasped as he saw his girl in front of the open fridge door, motionless, "Oh my God!!!" He scrambled in there, and ducked down, "SYRINX!" Kevin felt along her skin, and checked her neck. She's still breathing.

"Fuck, not again! Not now!" He groaned with worry as he tucked his arms in and around her, and carefully picked up his unconscious mermaid, closing the fridge door behind him.

He knows what to do; it just scares him senseless every time he sees this happen.


"Hello?" Adam answered his phone, shortly after punching out for the day.

"Hi, this is Jerry from the Dream Waltz. Can I speak to Adam, please?"


"Excellent. So you're Jamal's roommate, right? He said you were interested in applying to be a performer?"

"Yeah, that's me."

"Alright. So first things first - are you currently employed?"

"Yes. I'm a cart-driver for the Fish House on the Kele-Kolika Pier."

"Alright. So in terms of performance, what can you do?"

"Nothing that special," Adam shrugged, "Just sing, mostly."

"Yes, Jamal showed me a video on his phone of when you sang on stage on a cruise - he said you were performing for your boyfriend after a fight, is that correct?"

"Yeah. To be honest, that was the first time I ever performed in front of an audience."

"How did it feel? Were you nervous, stage fright?"

"A little, but I got with it good enough."

"That's good to hear," Jerry said, as if he was taking a note, "So why do you want to work at the Dream Waltz?"

"My hours got cut in half at my current occupation. I need the work, so my boss advised me to get a second job, and Jamal thinks I've got a good voice."

"Well, for what it's worth, I think you do too." Adam chuckled at that, "Now, are you willing to work holidays and overtime if needed?"


"Alright... Do you have a resume I can take a look at sometime this week?"

"Yes, I can drop it off tomorrow you like."

"That would be great." Jerry said, "Do you have reliable transportation?"

"Yes, I have a motorcycle."

"Very well. Which would you prefer to work - Morning, Noon, or Evenings?"

"I'm pretty flexible with my schedule, but it really depends on my current job."

"Ok, I can work with that..." Jerry made a few side notes, "Alright, now I'm sure Jamal told you we don't normally hire anyone permanently for a part-time position, we mostly hire a certain act or routine for a while then onward, and so forth."

"Yeah, I know."

"So you're more than welcome to sign up for a paid night, but if we like the way you perform, and if we like you, we can set up an official space for you as a Dream member here at the Waltz. Sound good?"

"Sure, that'd be nice." Adam smiled.

"Alright Adam. We have an empty spot on Saturday at 4PM for a three-hour shift. You can see if there's any other kind of performance you might want to try besides singing f you want. Are you ok with that?"

"Yeah, I'll be there!"

"Sounds great, I'll pencil you in then. See you then, and bring your voice."

"Haha, sure thing, and thanks a lot."

"You're welcome, and I hope you have a nice day."

"You too." Adam hung up, smiling as he felt a little more optimistic.


"Thank you so much, Nick," Merrick endearingly said as Merrick and Nick walked out of the EMPLOYEES ONLY door in the shop, holding a large novelty Lovers gift bag, containing Merrick's new uniform, nametag, and employee handbook.

"Hey, no problem man, I got yo back." He said, "Best practice yo reading a lil bit, but you gonna do just great!"

"I will, and thanks again! I'll be here first thing Monday!" Merrick dutifully replied before saying his goodbyes, and taking off.

Moments later, Merrick is trotting over to the Fish House, smiling with glee as he sees Adam with his motorcycle, his arms crossed and his leather jacket on, smiling right back at him, waiting for him to come, just like every Wednesday.

"Hi Adam!" The merman ran up to him, and hugged him tightly. Adam huffed as he squeezed his beloved boyfriend just as tight.

"Mmm!" They kissed each other for sweetly, tenderly lapping their lips for just a moment before parting, "So how'd it go?"

"I got the job!" Merrick reported eagerly, "I'm start work on Monday as a Sales Associate at Lovers!"

"Oh my God, that's great, honey!" Adam said with wonder as he kissed Merrick again. The merman placed his items into the leather carrier of Adam's motorcycle, and they left for the beach.

Once they made it to the sand, Merrick sits sidesaddle on the seat of the motorbike while Adam pushes it. The sun is half-submerged into the ocean, giving the sky its usual orange twilight. Adam ducks down, and digs his hand into the carrier of his motorcycle.

"Babe?" Adam nudged Merrick's arm a little.

"Hm?" Merrick turned, and chuckled as he sees the Ocalen he made for Adam.

"How about we have our first duet to celebrate, huh?" Adam asked with his charming smile. Merrick blushes sheepishly.

"You're always so romantic, Adam~" Merrick took the instrument, and cleared his throat, "What song?"

"How bout Dark Horse?"

"Mhm..." Merrick swiped his tongue onto his lips, took a breath, and blew deftly into the shell. One hand turns the side of the shell, while the fingertips of his other hand tapped and played a flute-like melody from the shell.

"~Hmhmhmhmmmhmmm~" Adam hummed a little with the tune as he pushed the motorcycle along the sand, "~Make me your one and oooonnlyy ~Hmhmhmmmm~ Hmhmhmmhmhmhm ~Hmhmhm ~Hmhmmmhmmhmmm~"

"~So you wanna play with magic~" Adam sang as Merrick played the shell, "~Boy, you should know what you're faaalling fooorrr ~Baby do you dare to do this? ~Cause I'm coming at you like a daaarrk hooorrrse~"

Merrick matches the sound of the Ocalen in perfect sync with Adam's voice, "~Are you ready for, ready for ~A perfect storm, perfect storm~" The shore washes continuously on the sand, the low squealing of gulls call out in the darkening sky, "~Cause once you're mine, once you're mine~"

"~There's no going back~"

Merrick blew into the shell in a short sequence of notes and tunes, remembering how the song goes in his head.

"~Mark my woooorrds~" Adam lazily continues, imitating Katy Perry's tone as he remembers it, "~This love will make you levitate ~Like a biiirrrd ~Like a bird without a ca-"

Suddenly, Merrick stopped playing his Ocalen. "Merrick?" He looked to his boyfriend, and then looked to where Merrick was starring.

In front of them, a fair distance away, is a dark-skinned man. He walks deliberately on the sand towards them, looking straight at them with a look so solemn on his face as he approaches Adam and Merrick.

He wears very little on his wide-set frame, looking firm and muscular. Around his bald head are rather large shark teeth tied in a tight binding of seaweed. Both bulging biceps and mighty thighs are wrapped with a tight tether adorned with many welded sea glass beads. A somewhat unusual addition is a skimpy cloth strung up around his waist by fishing line that just barely covers his free-hanging manhood, as well as drafting his thick behind.

"Merrick..." Adam mumbled as they looked at this strange, ocean-clad stranger, approaching them slowly on his own time as the sun continued to gradually disappear under the horizon, "Is he..."

"Yes, he is... No doubt about it... But how is he walking..." Merrick muttered as he watched him.

The man stopped walking when he reached almost 10 feet away from the couple. He looks at them with deep green eyes, a trait that stands out from the dark color of his skin, his thick lips showing neither frown nor smile.

"I bid you greetings." He finally spoke onto them in a deep, purposeful voice, "Do not start a conflict - though I am unarmed, I will still defend myself if I must."

Merrick dismounted the motorcycle as he kept a very sharp and close eye on the newcomer. He can't seem to make a judgment on him, but...

"We won't hurt you," Adam spoke up, "What do you want?"

"I am here..." The man answered, "For the Coshiton."



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