Home » Fantasy » “Beyond the Wave and Foam”, Part 26

“Beyond the Wave and Foam”, Part 26

Part 26

 

“Are you sure you’re gonna be able to drink this?” Izzy brought the bottle of champagne and two glass out to the patio where Calista sat on the edge overlooking the lagoon. “After months of being limited to cider, won’t this do a number on you?”

Calista chuckled but didn’t turn around. Instead, she kept her eyes fixed on the nighttime horizon on the other side of the lagoon. “I cleared it with both Harmony and the lab.” She looked to her right as Izzy sat on the patio edge as well, letting her legs dangle over the side. “I’m allowed two glasses, no more.”

“I’ll make sure they’re full glasses.” Izzy uncorked the bottle and filled both glassed almost to the brim. “Here you go.”

“Isn’t this a little… full?” Calista eyed the glass carefully. “Aren’t the bubbles supposed to mix with the air to bring out the flavor?”

Izzy shrugged. “I have no idea. I just drink this stuff.” She held her glass out for a toast. “Happy graduation, and to your new life.”

“To my new life.” She took a good sip and set the glass aside, thinking about the events of the day—

After the lab exams the lab told Calista that they saw no reason for her to move into Down Below Town and proceed to the next part of her training, which consisted of adapting to living underwater twenty-four/seven. As she’d told Izzy when she returned for lunch, while she could sleep here at the bungalow, AFI now expected her to spend the majority of her time at the mermaid enclave, which meant her time above water was mostly coming to and end…

Just as Izzy said, it was a graduation of sorts. Calista had passed all her testing up to this point, that above and below the waves. For the next three months, however, all of Calista’s testing and living would occur underwater. Even if she remained at the bungalow, she was expected to sleep there only and to spend the rest of her time at Down Below Town.

Which meant her human life was, more or less, coming to an end.

Izzy swung her right leg forward and back. “Anything in particular you’re going to miss once you move out to Mermaid Town?”

Calista snorted. “Silly.” She lowered her head slightly as she glanced at her friend through her through her thick, ginger hair. “I’m going to miss you. The rest of my life—” She making a piffting sound as she waved her right hand through the air. “I don’t care about at all. But you…” She reached over and took Izzy’s left hand in her right. “Not seeing you on a regular basis is going to hurt.”

“Yeah.” Izzy squeezed Calista’s hand. “You’re the one thing I’m going to miss a whole lot.” She turned her gaze across the lagoon without releasing her friend’s hand. “I hope they’ll at least let me call once in a while.”

“From what I understand that’s not all that difficult.” She released Izzy’s hand. “Can I ask a question?”

Izzy didn’t look away from the ocean beyond their bungalow. “Sure.”

“Before I left, were you ever going to tell me you loved me?”

What?” Izzy’s head whipped around, locking upon Calista’s smiling face. “How did—?’

“Oh, please.” Calista chuckled lightly as she folded her hands together under her naked breasts. “I’ve suspected it for at least a couple of years. I mean, you’re far too protective of me to be just a friend.” She looked down at her tail. “Plus the way you’ve acted these last few weeks…”

Though Izzy knew she was about to have her heart-broken, she had to hear. “Yes?”

“I’ve gotten a lot better at reading body language that Harmony suspects.” When Calista turned her head towards her friend, her eyes were misty with tears. “Every move you made said, ‘I’m losing my love’.”

Izzy had absolutely no idea how to respond to Calista’s observations. “I should have left when you were away for training.”

“Why? So you wouldn’t have to hear me say that?” Calista shook her head. “Wouldn’t you rather know that I knew, instead of wondering the rest of your life?”

“Well, you know, that’s one of those damned if you do, damned if you don’t situations.” Izzy wiped a few tears away from her eyes. “So what does it mean?”

“I means I know you love me—and I’ll carry that with me for the rest of my life.” Calista drank half her glass in a couple of gulps before moving closer to her friend. “And wouldn’t you prefer to spend a last night with the person you love instead of with your closest friend?”

Izzy reached out this time and took Calista’s hand in hers. “I don’t know what I ever did to deserve having you in my life.”

Calista leaned her head against Izzy’s shoulder. “You know what you did.”

Izzy glanced over at the thick tangle of hair resting against her. “What did I do?”

“You helped make my life worth living.” Calista tilted her head back and looked up into Izzy’s eyes. “And my dreams worth sharing.”

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