Aug 20, 2014

Mermaid Excerpt

“Why do you want to be human so badly, little drone? Your people must have told you that it isn’t exactly a safe goal.”

“There was this man I met. He was…special, different.” She trailed off, frustrated by her inability to explain.

“Are you in love, then?” His smile twisted coldly.

“Love?” Coral asked, confused by the derision in his tone. Love was the bond that kept the pod together. Her feelings about Rob were different. “No. I don’t think so. It’s just…I want to be more than salt and water. I want to matter.”

“Perhaps you should tell me the whole story. I want the exact details. Your processor should be good enough for perfect recall unless WFSI has changed the design since I was there.”

“No. I remember.” Coral began her story with finding the boat. When she reached the conversation between her rescuer and his companions, the man stopped her.

“They said the drones belonged to his father’s company?” His nearly colorless eyes stared intently into hers. “What was his name again?”

“Rob. And yes, that is what they said,” Coral answered, puzzled at his shift from bored indifference to intense fascination.

“Continue,” he told her sternly. “And don’t leave anything out.”

Coral did as she was told. When she was finished, he stared out toward the wall of mist and the jagged reefs for a long time. “I’ll help you. What I have in mind is risky for you in more ways than one. I can mold a human body out of the one you have and teach you to act like us. I might even be able to put you in the path of this man who fascinates you so much.”

He held up a hand to forestall her immediate agreement.  “It might work and it might not. You might die or be left only partially functional. There is certainly no going back to being a drone once the procedure is complete. Also, you will owe me. And when I call in my favor, I will expect you to do anything I ask without hesitation. If you don’t agree to that, I won’t help you.”

“I’ll do it.” Coral looked up into his hard face in amazement. A human body—no one would ever think to find her on land. She could learn to be as human as she wanted. “If you can do that for me, I will do whatever you want.”

“Good.” He smiled and this time it lit up his face. “Then let’s get started. We have a lot of work to do.”