“The Calling” Scene 29: “The Calling”

Kemena hadn’t been too worried about Penny silence on the trip back to the hotel–nor was she that surprised when Penny suggested they pack and leave for Portland. She wasn’t suggesting they fly back to Albuquerque that night, but rather they get a hotel room and spend the evening in the city, then take a 6 AM flight out of Portland International which would take them home with a one hour layover in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Kemena didn’t see this is a problem, and she thought that having an evening together in the city, with good restaurants in a nice, large hotel room, would be a good way of lifting Penny’s spirits. Since they hadn’t unpacked much since arriving at Tillamook, they were loaded up and back on the road to Portland less than half an hour after returning from Cape Lookout.

They settled on staying at the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront, which gave them access to the riverfront and a number of restaurants. From the hotel they were only twenty minutes from the airport, so Penny left a 4 AM wake up so they could clean up, gather the things, and leave to catch the flight.

As Kemena hoped, by the end of the day Penny seemed almost back to her normal self. She knew her friend would be upset about her mother going away, but she reminded her that her mother and went to the same sort of sadness when she left twelve years ago.

When they returned to the hotel about 8 PM Kemena was told to use the bathtub first, and she knew why. After she cleaned up and dressed in her robe, she was drying her hair when Penny walked in, ran the tub full of hot water, and slipped out of her robe and into the tub without saying a word. Moments later she gave a satisfactory sigh and Kemena turned around to see Penny’s tail rise up out of the water, unfurl, and lay down on the end of the tub. Kemena went back to wrapping her hair in a towel. “I figured that’s why you wanted me to bathed first.”

“Yeah, I needed a Daryl Hannah moment.” Penny chuckled as she referred to the scene in the movie Splash where Daryl Hannah reverted back to her mermaid form and relaxed while taking a bath. “I’ve gotten to where I don’t even like taking showers anymore; I’d much rather just lay here, soak, and then clean off.”

“I can’t blame you.” Since the bathroom is large enough to have a chair were one could sit while changing, Kemena pulled up next to the tub so she could sit while speaking to her friend. “So, how long do you think your mom’s going to be gone?”

Kemena splashed a few bubbles on her tail before looking up at Kemena. “We’re not going to see her for a while.”

“You think she’ll be down for five or six years before she comes back, like you did?”

“Kemena—” Penny let out a soft sigh. “Mama’s not coming back. Maybe she’ll come back for a few weeks every so often, but she’s never coming back to stay.”

Though she wanted to ask if Penny was serious, Kemena could tell by the girls expression she was. “She’s gone back for good?”

“She’s wanted to go back for some time.” Penny lay back stared up at the ceiling. “She’s been hearing The Calling for years.”

This was an expression Kemena had never heard. “The Calling? What’s that?”

“It’s an urge one feels to return to the ocean.” Penny kept a slight smile on her face as she looked at Kemena, but there was little humor in her voice. “Mermaids are creatures of the sea and though we can come on land for extended periods of time, eventually there’s a feeling telling the mermaid she should head back to the ocean and returned to her pod.

“There are things mermaids can do to anchor themselves to land, and Mama’s been doing it most of her life. First she started the business and worked hard to build it up, and then—” Penny shrugged. “She had me. These things kept her anchored to land—and she did that because she liked living here.

But she told me that a few years after I went to the pod she started feeling The Calling again and she said if it hadn’t been for you, she’d have been tempted to join me.” The right corner of Penny’s mouth curled upwards. “You remember last few years I was away, mama seem to want to spend more time with you so she could talk about me?”

Kemena nodded slowly. “I figured she was doing it because she was lonely.”

She did it because she needed an anchor. Otherwise she’d been tempted to sell the business and take off. And another reason she didn’t do that was she wanted me to be able to come home—and if she was in the pod, I’d never be able to do that.

“Mama and I knew a couple years ago that when she went back to the pod that was pretty much it; she might return home once in a while for a few weeks here and there, but she was going to spend the rest of her life under the waves.” Penny closed her eyes as a few tears trickled out. “I told her this morning at come back next summer and visit the pod for about a month. I figured you could let me get away for that much time.”

“I don’t see that being a problem.” A fear clutched at Kemena’s heart, one that made her hesitant to ask the next question. “What about mermaids born on land? Do they hear this Calling, too?”

Penny spent nearly five seconds looking everywhere except at Kemena, but she finally locked her gaze with her. “I don’t hear it now, but I figure and about twenty years—yeah, I’ll probably hear it. And it likely won’t be long after that go back to the pod.”

“What—” Penny’s voice caught in her throat. “What about the business? What about what were trying to do for us?”

Penny snorted and shook her head. “I didn’t make you my partner to do this for us: I did all this for you. I figured when it was time to go back I’d sign over the business so you’d have something after I’m gone.”

Kemena was almost shaking on her chair. “No.”

“I’m not worried about myself. I can get money: there is an underground on land of mermaids dealing in precious gems. If I wanted to—”


“—I could get access to a couple of million in no time. I—”

NO.” Kemena jumped to her feet, knocking the chair back. “No, you can’t.”

“I can’t what?” Penny was somewhat puzzled by Kemena’s actions, she figured she’d be somewhat upset, but not like this.

“You can’t just leave like that.” Kemena stomped around the bathroom for close to thirty seconds, looking down as she paced the same figure-eight over and over. She finally stopped and turned toward the tub, thrusting and accusing finger at Penny. “I didn’t join you because I wanted something I wanted something from this business. I joined because I wanted something for us, together.”

Penny set up slightly. “Kemena, what do you mean?”

Kemena shook her head as she stared up at the ceiling, mumbling in her voice just loud enough to be heard. “I thought when you said your pod was a matriartical society that—” When she turned to Penny there wasn’t anger in her eyes: there was sadness. “Don’t you understand? Do I have to spell it out for you, you stupid mermaid?”

And in that second Penny did get what her friend was trying to tell her—while at the same time she realized that it’d been ridiculous for her to conceal some of the things that she should have said during the last five years.

She patted the side of the tub. “Kemena, please sit by me.” Reluctantly her friend did his asked, sitting crosslegged on the floor. “There is an anchor that mermaid speak of, almost with reverence. It’s called the Grand Adventure.”

Kemena’s words stammered out between her tears. “And what’s that?”

“That’s when one mermaid falls in love with another and the love between them is so powerful that neither of them want to be with anyone else. No other binding partners, no other binding partners with whom they want to make a child: they stay together for life.

“It’s considered mythical because mermaids aren’t exactly monogamous creatures: I think I’ve made that pretty clear.” She chuckled at her own lame joke. “It not only happens with one mermaid to another, but it also happens with one mermaid to human, and that kind of pairing is even more mythical, because the mermaid is essentially renouncing the sea’s hold over her.”

Penny drew a deep breath before reaching over the tub edge and taking Kemena’s hand. “There’s a lot of things I should have told you in the last five years. I should have told you about The Calling, but there’s something else I should have told you as well—something I was afraid to tell because I didn’t know how you’d react.”

Kemena’s face brightened as a soft smile formed through the tears. “What are you trying to tell me?”

“Do I have to spell it out for you, you stupid human?” Penny chuckled as she brought Kemena’s hand to her lips and kissed it. “Do you want to go on a Grand Adventure with me?”

“The Calling” Scene 28: “The Goodbye”

It was just after 9 AM when Penny, Kemena, and Leigh finally reached the beach at the south end of Cape Lookout. The surf was still a bit rough from the storm that had come through last night, guaranteeing that there would be few people in the trail head parking lot above and even fewer who might be slightly interested in whatever they were doing.

The reason for starting out early was simple: Penny wanted to leave a cash of items for her mother—which included clothes, cell phone and battery, and money—about two thirds of the way down the trail. She also wanted to find a good location on the beach itself where they could hide her mother’s clothing so that when she returned she wouldn’t have to spend too much time walking around naked. Finding places and setting them up took about forty-five minutes, but once they were finished they were convinced that someone simply passing by would not find the items.

Once they were finished there was little else to do except to prepare for Leigh’s departure–and there was little that needed to be prepared. The trio had already spent two days in the Portland area and had spent the night before in a hotel in Tillamook. All the things that Penny and her mother were going to say have been said during the last month, and during their last night together as a trio they discovered there was nothing left to say—

Except goodbye.

Leigh scanned the surf while Penny and Kemena flanked her. Penny waved out toward the onrushing waves. “You gonna have any trouble getting through that?”

“No.” Leigh shrugged before smiling at her daughter. “I’ll transition here in shallows and pushed through at no time. At worst I might catch a hard downwash and scrape along the bottom a little. Not a big deal for me.”

“We could have picked a better day for you to leave.” Kemena looked up at the sky which still seems somewhat threatening. “At least the sun could have been shining for you.”

“The sun is shining for me, Kemena.” She turned and faced both girls. “I’m proud of you both. You said you’re going to take over the business in five years and you did. I have nothing to worry about while I’m gone.”

Penny took her mother’s hand. “Not a thing, Mama. It’ll still be here when you come back.”

“Yeah, well…” Leigh sighed and grabbed the bottom of her long sleeved tunic. “No point in dragging this out.” It took her less than a minute to strip completely out of her clothes and hand them over to Penny and Kemena, who proceeded to stuff them in a large, waterproof bag that they would hide in the cash at beach level. She swung her arms a couple of times against the chill of the beach air. “I better get moving before I catch cold.”

Kemena felt tears welling up in her eyes. “Goodbye, Leigh. I hope you have fun in the pod.”

Leigh wrapped her arms around the lovely Mexican girl. “I’m going to miss you, girl.” She pulled back and there was tiny streams of tears running down her cheeks. “You take care of Penny, now. See to it nothing happens to her.”

It was all Kemena could do to speak. “I will: don’t worry.”

Penny took her mother’s hand. “I’ll walk you down to the surf.” She looked back at Kemena. “I’ll be right back.”

Kemena saw Penny and her mother walked down to the very edge of the surf and even stand in it so that water was lapping up to their ankles and lower thighs. They stood close for about a minute not saying much, just touching and keeping their heads bowed. Finally they embraced and after a long hug they kissed each other on the cheek. Kemena took three steps back up on to the beach as Leigh turned and ran into the surf. She dove into a wave stayed submerged for about fifteen seconds; when she popped up she gave the girls a wave before turning and flipping her tail high in the air. She vanished from sight but a minute later she leapt high into the air and flipped over in a somersault, much as Penny had done twelve years earlier.

And then she was gone.

Penny walked back up the beach and joined Kemena. She stood by her side for about twenty seconds before she began sobbing. Kemena took her in her arms and held her for close to a minute, letting her best friend cried herself out.

When she was done Penny gave Kemena a hug and then motioned with her head for the trail. “Let’s go.” Without another word the two girls left the wave crashed beach behind.

“Sense8”, Season 2, Episode 7, “I Have No Room In My Heart For Hate”

So many secrets, a few answers, and one big surprise…

The Snarking Dead TV Recaps

[Image via Netflix] We’re finally getting closer to the end of Sense8 and In several things that have been set in motion in the earlier episodes are starting to come to fruition. Is this going to be good or bad for our sensates? Only one way to find out…

I Have No Room In My Heart For Hate

Written by Lana Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski
Directed by James McTeigue

Transition Moment, plane to Chicago:

Riley (Tuppence Middleton) is somewhere in the air on her way to Chicago and Will (Brian J. Smith) is freaking the fuck out. He’s pacing in London; he’s pacing up and down the aisle of the plane; and he’s pacing at the cabin in Northern California where Nomi (Jamie Clayton) and Amanita (Amanita) are trying to comfort the sensate couple. Nomi tells Will to chill, the ID she fabricated for Riley was good enough for…

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Time to Throw Down: Bringing People Together

Here it is, Memorial Day, and in The Burg it’s rainy as hell.  While people were likely still sleeping, or at Lee staying comfortable under the sheets, I headed out for breakfast, something I do on a regular basis whenever there’s a holiday.


Yes, we have a Denny’s in the area, and starting out the morning with steak and eggs and coffee is not a bad way to go.  After I’m done with this post I’ll start on my Sense8 recap, and when I’m finished with that I’ll head over and get some ribs over at the Artfest a few blocks away.  This was dinner yesterday:

When I return I get out the first of two mermaid excerpts I need to write, maybe watch a little Mr. Robot, then work on the novel before finishing off the evening with the last mermaid scene of the evening, which will get me all caught up on that story.

In other words, no big cookouts for me: it’s going to be another day of massive writing.

The scene I’m working on, the first part of which I’m excerpting today, has been going rather well. Last night it did well over eight hundred words, and when I have worked on this scene the fewest words I’ve written were right around seven hundred.  I don’t know that things are going easier, but it does appear that I’m making my way to the scene rather effortlessly.  As always, the biggest obstacle I have is simply getting started, but it seems that as of late I’ve been more eager to start writing, and get into writing, and get it done.

So maybe this is a turning point: maybe I’m getting back into the swing of things.  We’ll see, ’cause I’ve said this before and I’ll probably say it again–and just because instead doesn’t make it true.

In the meantime, it’s time to get Kerry and Franky on the mat.  But before that happens, there’s all the preliminary stuff:


(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)


As seem to be the case whenever word got out that either Annie, or Kerry, or both, were about to engage in combat at Gwydion Manor, a sizable number of students appeared so they could watch the action. By the time Annie and Kerry arrived, they estimated at least seventy students were present, which was nearly half the enrollment of Salem. Annie, however, did not see this is a good sign. “I can’t believe this many people are showing up to watch you go up against Franky.”

Kerry didn’t take Annie statement as a slight against his ability. On their walk to the Tesla Science Center for their Practical Super Science class, they continued to express disbelief that Franky believed he could go up against Kerry and win his judgment trial. “Not only that, but who is spreading around word that we’re going to do this?”

“That answer is easy.” She spied Franky and Lisa standing on the far side of the combat mat. “He tells Lisa, Lisa tells her friends, her friends spread the word to their friends. Before you know it half the school knows what’s going on.”

Kerry glanced about the room. “Literally.”

Annie turned to face Kerry, coming as close as necessary so as to not be heard by anyone else. “You need to be careful. There’s a lot about this I don’t like.”

He nodded. “Don’t worry; I’m good.”

She cast her eyes downward for just a second. “Do you need to take another dose?” Annie referred to the gel caps Coraline gave him after their visit to the hospital and his examination. She told him they would help with the raging flux of hormones with which he was currently dealing and to take two more in the evening, as well as tomorrow morning, if he continued feeling stressed out. She was quite aware that what Coraline had given Kerry was nothing more than a light dose of the same hormonal medication Coraline gave to girls suffering from PMS. As she didn’t know how Kerry would react to that news, Annie felt it best not to mention anything.

He shook his head. “No, I feel good.” He reached into his jacket pocket and gave her the tin with the six remaining pills. “I think it’s best if you hold on to this, though.”

Annie took the tin just as Professor Chai walked into the Manor. “It’s like you’re about to start.”

He removed his backpack and slipped out of his jacket. “Better get this over with.” He wrapped his left arm around Annie’s shoulders and gave her a warm, slow kiss. “Wish me luck.”

“You’re not going to need it.” She nodded toward the mat. “Go on.”


In case anyone was wondering you now know: Kerry is being given PMS medication to keep his hormones balanced.  Because why not?  One hopes Coraline tells him what she’s giving him after he becomes a she, because by then who will care if she freaks out?  Actually, she should be on medication so she probably won’t be able to freak out, so that’s good.  Though after she transitions back to Male Kerry, there will be that hint of understanding that he was getting PMS medication so he could chill.

Yeah, this kid is getting his mind messed with in a big way.

Since the festivities are about to begin that means the magic is about the fly.  Still thing Frankie’s up the something?

Maybe you’ll find out tomorrow.