Maugrim had woken, again. This time further and further from where he had began years ago. He had lost his dark tail, reborn anew with that blue one he was familiar with for decades. The Tideborn carried his memories always, to learn from his past so that he could help shoals who needed him. Once a guardian of Shoals, until he found waters of his own to rule, he returned once more. He held out his hand and closed his eyes, focusing his energy. In the distances, bubbles began to build and rush in a trail, an object moving at the speed of lightning, and right into his hand. He held his trident one more, and moved to sling it over his shoulder. He'd then began to explore the waters, leaving the deeper currents towards a riverway., where he began to go further inland, before breaking the surface for the first time since his arrival. He saw a fin in the water and it was one of the soonest he's seen another of his kind. He'd swim slowlty up next to it, letting out a echo-location trill as bubbles expelled from his gills. He wanted to alert the mer to his arrival at her flank before he broke the surface. The triton greeted her in their native tongue "Tala, sestra." he trilled to her.
Sirenia turns to stare at the new mermaid and waves shyly to him "greetings" she smiled. She looked around her and wondered where he came from. Her eyes flashed curiously as she tilted her head watching him with wonder. " I havn't seen you around here... Are you new as well?" she asked.
Maugrim treads the water casually as he began to push hair from his face "I've just awoken, yes.. Its common occurence for the tides to pull me to waters that need be." he says "Are you okay, are the waters?" he says. He had a gift to sense Leviathans preying on shoals, and he would most definitely sense one if it were near "I do not sense anything endangering the waters here." he says. "Are you a member of the shoal?" he asks her with a stoic, but gentle tone.
Sirenia tilted her head and nods and smiles "I am princess Sirenia of the Oceania kingdom. i have traveled a long ways to here.. " she paused to look him over... She hadn't sensed much wrong here cept the weird vines and the crystal that changed her bright colors to her new-self "The waters are perfect here cept the strange vines that are growing everywhere and a weird crystal that shocked me and changed me... " She didn't want to give to much away and pressed her lips into a thin line..
Maugrim nodded to her some "I am Maugrim. I am a Guardian of the Tides and the waters." he says. "I was the King of a shoal in waters Far away from here." he says to her. "It is a pleasure to meet you Serenia." he nods to her. "Can you show me these vines?" he asks "And if you have any magic, that would lend aide if we require to dispel them." he says to her. "As far as crystals go, the presence of them in the water often seeks to keep magic of our people stable and pure, and touching them diretly without understanding of their magic... Well it could cause unpredictable effects like that..." he says "I would avoid touching it again until further investigation can be done." he encourages her. "To ensure dark magic isnt afoot." Maugrim explains. "How are you feeling, since the change?" he asks her
Sirenia tears began to form around her eyes and she shook them off " Very different.. But my power to speak to fish has not been effected luckly. I can show you the vines but its a couple days swim and on land.. " She paused for a second to look at him " The ones i have seen are on shore.. I have had one attacked me when I was on land investigating them. And with another mermaid Asherah have been trying to figure out the vines..." nodding to him "Your a king... ? Have you come to rule dire waters? I was going to rule if no one else of royalty was around.. But i havn't seen any?" Her eyes sparked in anger for a split second before composed herself
Maugrim listened to her and offered his hand "I can get us there faster" he says. "But yes, we will have to walk on land. I can only move us as far as the water stretches." he explains. He'd keep his hand proffered to her and a comforting smile swept his face "I'll need to to imagine the waters near where we are to go and then I will be able to move us there in almost an instant." he says to her. "From there we can go ashore to investigate as well." he smiles. "As far as tjhe differences that the crystal made, can you explain on the way there?
Sirenia nods to him. "The crystals.. I dont rememeber the way to them im sorry. " she said quietly as she played with a strand of her hair that was in her eyes. "The vines yes i know where they are.. You can see them for miles.. But we dare to not get to close as they been very grabby torwards magical beings. But of course I will show you" she slowly put her hand in his..
Maugrim took her hand gently and soon as she began to think about the water close to where she had seen them, a bunch of bubbles began to surround them and soon, like a deep sea current ripped them away and they reappeared in another location, where Maugrim let his hand slip from hers and then he broke the surface of water, looking at the beach where he saw the vine growths. "Very out of place indeed. He'd step onto the dry land and it wasnt long before he shed his tail, leaving it there on the beach head. He'd have a pair of muscular legs and the triton stepped practiced onto the sand of the beach. He'd wave his hand and a pair of black pants appeared on him, and he stepped closer onto the beach. He stretched out his hand and soon water came up and formed a spherical barrier around him. He move slowly close to one as it seemed to be drawn to his presence "Very curious.." he said. "And you say they grow in the water too, or just the land?" he asks
Sirenia as she broke the surface and walked onto the land her tail slowly disappeared and legs appeared in its place.. "Yes just dont get to close to them. please " she whispered afraid the vines would hear her.. "They attacked me the last time i was around them with Asherah." her eyes watched him approach the vines and she shook her head and stayed a distance back just in case. Her staff ready just in case she needed to defend herself
Maugrim nodded to her "This isnt my first encounter with unusual growth." he says "Back in my Kingdom, some fungal growth grew underneath the tides and made my shoal very sick, and even had effects on our own magical crystals. I had to enlist the help of a transforming phoenix to help mend the waters and dispel the growth" he says "Attacking them directly is unwise, not knowing what causes their growth he says. "Whatever, or whoever placed them here really doesn't want them being disturbed, with the brambling thorns on them.." he says "I am going to try and trace their origins with the water that nourishes them." he says. He'd then hover his hand outwards and began to focus, following the root system by sensing the water in hopes to link the origin point.
Sirenia nods as she watches the vines wriggle slowly around and she hissed under her breathe " Whatever your doing they dont like it.. " taking a few steps more out of reach of the vines. Her eyes watching there every move like a cat waiting to pounce. "They sprouted not long after I arrived here I noticed that as well" she nodded her head to him as she spoke.
Ayane Arai Was just walking among the beach after a nice swim as she hummed a little tune while kicking up some sand once in a while but would shake her head when she spotted random vines on the beach " tsk, tsk, tsk.. such a mess " as she placed a hand on her hip while walking till she came to a halt as she spotted two figures on the beach too. Raising a brow and a low hum she would take a few more steps closer but then decided to wait and observe them for now.
Maugrim kept silent for a moment as she was talking "Yes, yes." he says. "I can feel them unsettled. I cannot see how far the roots stretch... But I can feel around their magic and try to discover a weakness in their growth. Maybe we can slow their growth, or even dispel them with the right practices..." he says to her. He heard the approach of another behind them, but did not turn to look as he focused on the bramble. The water sphere that swirled around him, came out in a tight rope shape and began to snake outward in the bramble, causing it to writhe even more violently as he worked against hit. There was some strain on his face as he kept looking further into the growth.
Sirenia heard someone approach behind them but she didn't wanna turn around and lose her focus on the vines just in case they attacked. Her thoughts began to think as well to what about the crown and who was gonna rule. But she shook that thought out of her head to focus more on the task at hand. "Oh." was all she whispered out and just watched him with curious eyes. Something felt weird in the air as well she could sense. She began to get angry and with the angrier she got she could feel the water slowly rising around her.
Ayane Arai took note they where somewhat busy and just observed for a bit longer, pondering as of what they where doing but if it where some kind of magic she could sense it slightly and frowned. After she had 'entertained' the fae folks for that hookah party a couple days back she had learned some information about the vines and magic issues but didn't wanted to stick her nose into it but got annoyed by the mess it surely made.
Maugrim could sense distress from other of his kind and he could sense her anger as the water began to rise, especially around his feet. "Sirenia, be calm" his voice would seem to echo in her mind, and if she wasn't prepared, the command that it brought to his people for a long time would be hard to resist. The water he wielded dropped into the sand, soaking it and darkening it underneath the days sun. He'd then turn towards his kin and move to place his hand on his shoulder as he met her with the Triton's gaze, a very hypnotic ability. Almost as hypnotic as a siren's song. His duties ever since his creation was to bring comfort to his people, something he carried into his reign back home "I am here, you are here, and we are safe." he says to the mermaid. He then looked at the jubilant greeting of a centaur and his hairs stuck up "Tala, land walker." he says. He then looked towards Ayane, regarding her as well with his cerulean gaze.
Sirenia remained angry and the water began to swirl around her more but she listened to his voice and snorted as he tried to use his ability on her, her own siren's call was strong as well. "no one is safe with magic changing and the vines destroying homes." her eyes flashed and she hissed. But she took a huge breathe and calmed down.. sighing she turned to the newcomer and glazed over her. Half fish half human she wondered?
Ayane Arai as she was observing the two she would litterly jump a bit when a centaur barged by making her blink a few times before shaking her head " equines.." she let out a snort and glanced back to the other two, Taking note she was spotted and would make an approach " Tala no shinzoku " she would speak out in both mermish and her other tongue being japanese as she gave the two a gentle smile " dealing with the vines? " she would ask in common tongue and glanced at some of them for a moment before making eye contact again with both again but specially the woman who seemed to have a fit " ochitsuite " she would say with a echo in her voice while waved her hand in a manner to well calm down too. " the land is already tense as it is"
Maugrim looked her over, concern for her apparent on his expression. He'd regard her with a softer voice "We will get to the bottom of this, Princess." he says. "I promise." he says "I will need to reflect on this for some time but if I uncover anything, you will be one of the first to know." he says. She likely would be the very first, having met her first, and the fact that her concern mirrored his. Normally, he only cared so much for the waters being safe, but as far as corrupting growth went, it effected all parts of the land, and its waters surrounding. His attention drew towards Ayane, and he nod "Trying to learn more about the vines, and where they originated from." he says "I could not see that deep into the roots, or they are scattered and form no network with each other." he says. "I am Maugrim." he says. He'd not state his title, as it held no meaning to this place. And noone respected a wandering King from a distant land.
Sirenia nodded softly, she was concerned for everyone's care being. she was always liked that. Her mother raised her to be kind even when something was wrong.. but the anger that rose inside her was not herself. " Forgive me.. I think the crystal that i had touched changed me more then I thought.. I am not normally angry like this. " she wept softly as her eyes glazed over the 2 hovering protectively around her and she smiled. "such kindness from 2 random people I just met.. Makes me wonder if I would be good enough to be a ruler if i cannot control myself anymore?" Her eyes softly looked to the man while she spoke.
Ayane Arai tilted her head to a side as she listened to the male figure speak before listening to the woman " do not fret, whatever is going on the land is driving some people just.. well different in emotions or looks i even heard" she would say with a shrug " the moment i came over here from my long travels i sensed something was wrong so no magic for me for a while" as she folded her arms together infront of her before she would glance back at the man as he introduced himself " Ayane " she would say introducing herself before looking once more at the woman " rule you say? Well that would be about time someone ruled the waters here, trust me im just a performer but what you can pick up on many taverns and feasts.. i was kind of surprised the waters did not have a ruler as of yet.. but then again they are also very still "
Maugrim let his gaze drift over the Princess' features as she wept and he thinned the pillowed flesh of his mouth and shook his head "You may be unfit to lead a shoal, Princess, but it does not mean you are unfit to inspire." he says "Even just meeting, I see your empathy towards others." he says. "But you can not let empathy alone be the force that drives you." he says "Sometimes, sacrifices must be made to protect our people, and ensure the sanctity of our waters." he says. "We will see what help we can offer the people of this land" he says "But what is equally important is to uncover what's happened to you, Princess." he patted her cheek softly "I am going to take up the mantle of Warden, and hold the seat of the throne until we figure out what has happened to you, and you are fit to rule." he says "Are we in agreement." he'd extend his hand to her, and the blue trails of magic that revolved around his arms came down to his wrist, forming a blue droplet of pure energy in his hand. Then it turned solid and glowed with the vibrance of the seas "Swallow this and it will bind us together, Princess, and if there comes a time where the changes are causing you to lose yourself, I will be able to guide you back." he offers her "As a last resort." he affirms. He then looked towards Ayane and nodded to her. "Pleasure, Ayane." he offered to her. "Ruling is no easy thing, even claiming a throne has a conquest of its own." he explains "Still waters are more dangerous than rapid currents, in my experience." it most often meant in his lifetimes that stagnant waters were abandoned by the former inhabitants "Together, we can bring about a stable shoal, where we care for another.
Sirenia took what he offered and swallowed she felt weak after being so angry. Her powers being unstable wasn't enough for her. "I will help in anyways I can when I can. I have a story to be told and I am not ready for it to end just yet. I will get to tell my side and for all to hear one day." She nodded in agreement to maugrim. "Together?" She asked hopeful with glee in her eyes now. "I agree then" She held out her hand and slowly made water swirl around them as to make a pact with the man.
Ayane Arai just watched the two for a while not really adding anything else but that's just how she was most of the time too. She was always observed and sometimes chatty but really you could compare her to the ocean, sometimes still sometimes expressive. She would rub her chin with a smirk as she watched the two form a pact " ara ara.. " she muttered to herself with a low chuckle as her eyes glowed for a short note.
Maugrim nodded to her "I know you will." he says "It may be a very long road ahead for yoiu, but I will offer you what strength you need in the coming days." he says to her. As she swirled the water around them both he'd keep his gaze locked on hers "I expect you to follow when required, so that you may lead effectively when you ascend." he kept an eyes on the water, making sure the magi she wielded was stable with the hold she had on the water. He then looked towards Ayane and spoke out to her "Are you looking to be part of the shoal, Ayane." he asks her.
Sirenia slowly nodded listening to him "I Princess Sirenia of dire waters promise to listen when its required of me" then turned to ayane to see if she wished to be apart as well. Her eyes seemed to beg but she knew if someone wished to not join you could not force them. Instead she smiled at Ayane. "Would love to have you but I understand as well if you wish to not." She said with a nod
Ayane Arai looked at them both as they also asked her to be part of it, she would stay silenced for a while unless a short hum escaped her lips whilst rubbing her chin in thought. " sure.. why not " as she smirked at them both " though do know i do travel from time to time, perks of how i was raised plus i love learning things to bring back to others " as she let out a low chuckle and lowered her arms down again.
Maugrim nodded to her and accepting the promise, and her loyalty "Very good, Princess." he said to her "We will build a strong shoal." he then turned to Ayane and listened to her words "I understand that more than anyone. The Dire Waters will welcome you to have it as a home, for when you are not traveling." he says. "Welcome." he nodded his head to her. The shoal has increased by two today and he was appreciative of that. He'd look out towards the water "I am going to return to the water and go hunt us some dinner," he says "I will come find you upon my return." he says. Even as a leader, he took great honor in caring for the shoal, and led by example.
Sirenia "I will be around when needed just call " she looked towards the water and thought about going home herself. "Take care of yourselves till then" With a wave she bounded back towards the waters.. soon as her legs hit the water her tail slowly began to appear again. As she waded in further she leaped up and waved her tail in goodbye and drove back into the waters
Ayane Arai watched Maugrim head to the water as she waved him off " good hunting " she'd say with a smile before raising her arms up giving herself a good stretch " oh! shit that reminds me i need to drop by the city for a bit cause word caught me about this local tavern that's kinda been renewed and took interest in some entertainment or such or dunno, my lucky guess" she says with a toothy grin " so imma go check that out for a bit and come back later here" she would say to the woman before turning around and heading off, again humming one of her many tunes cause hey she loved to dance but singing was something too.
continued with just Maugrim and Sirenia a few hours later:
Maugrim had finished the hunt he was on and unfortunately he returned empty handed with game but he did find a few interesting shinies he had found. he was admiring them in his hand while two bracers were fitted on his wrist even. He was settling into these waters nicely and a school of fish rotated around his body. a few baby sea turtles nestled onto his shoulders as he floated in place, admiring the trinkets in his palms
Sirenia was settling into the kelp nicely around the throne.. sighing deeply she called for some fish to nuzzle her while she tried to process what had come over her earlier.. she had never gotten that angry before.. nor had she been able to control the water like that. She plucked shells off the bottom of the sea floor while she pondered not knowing someone was lurking around her as well.
Maugrim must have been too distracted with himself that he didnt notice someone lurking in the kelp bed. He blinked some when he saw movement and then he eyed closer, narrowing them. "Sirenia?" he called out, his gills expelling bubbles. "Is everything okay over there?" his voiced chimed out towards her with a trill. The triton remained where he was, and clutched the trinkets he held in his palm and placed the closed hand behind his back
Sirenia heard a voice call for her and she poked her head above the kelp. She noticed it was Maugrim and her eyes teared up but she held back from crying. "Yes i am fine. thank you." she said with a wave of her hand dismissing him. She played with the fish that swam about her torso and she giggled when they brushed against her. She noticed him holding something behind his back but shrugged it off.
Maugrim could not notice her tears even if he searched for them as they were underwater now but he folded his arms across his chest, not convinced by her dismissal "Sirenia..." he said, his voice more stern, though caring. He swam closer towards the kelp, seeing her distracted by the fish that swam near her. He looked towards her expectantly, just watching, and waiting
Sirenia looked up at him as he was watching her with caring eyes and had to look away. He seemed like a father almost to care about her.. she thought back to her own father the king not knowing she was his daughter. She never had someone to completely care for her besides her mother. "Im scared.... " her eyes closed as she whispered.
Maugrim swam closer to the Princess and listened to her meek tone when she mentioned being scared. "Hmm." he thinks for a moment "A head full of fears, has no space for dreams" he says "What are you scared of?" he says "The change you've gone through." he asks her. His hand gently came to her arm and gave a soft squeeze. "I cant begin to help you, unless you are open and honest about your hardships." he says to her. "Lets start at the beginning... With the crystal." he says as he settled down and curled his tail around himself and began to preen any loose scales from it. "What happened when you touched it, did you feel anything?" he asks.
Sirenia settled down and curled her tail around herself. Her mind wandered back to that night she found the crystals. Gasping she reached into a pouch she always carries and pulled out the now dulled crystals.. that once were bright in colors. She flinched as she remembered they shocked her in her chest. "They shocked me. and when i came to My lovely bright green tail gone.... my lovely green hair... " she flicked her tail in angry sending bubbles around her. "I found one the day before and gave to a lady on land to examine but I didn't stop myself when i saw the lovely crystals.. I didn't even notice what was wrong with them till i picked them up.. I cant help that im drawn to pretties" She chuckled.
Maugrim finally drew his hand forward at her words and he nodded softly. "I will male an exchange with you. Your crystals, for my gems that I've found in the river." he had two sapphires, an emerald, and a topaz he proffered in one hand, his empty hand held out expectantly for the crystals she held. "Deal?" he asks her. He wasnt one to take, even as King. He'd always exchange something he had for what he wanted in return. "What color were they before? Maugrim assumed they looked much different when she was drawn to them.
Sirenia eyed the emerald in his palm and resisted the urge to grab and make a run for it, for now she stopped herself and put the crystals in front of him on the floor. "No need to trade.. Its ok.. these crystals were brightly colored in greens and blues. I couldn't help but be drawn to them. " She said with a shrug.
Maugrim took her hand as she set the crystals down into it and handed her the gems he had offered "Never, ever give away something for nothing, Sirenia" he affirmed with a stern voice. "I won't see you make any exceptions, not even for me." he says "Charity is not of our nature, it never has been." he explains "Now." he had hovered his hand there and a bunh of bubbles and tiny currents lifted the dulled crystals from their resting place and into his hand. They'd form a circle and he appraised them some, but not of their worth, more of their use. He stared at them for a long moment "How would you say your emotional state has been since your change?" he asks inquisitively
Sirenia let him take her hand and dropped the crystals into her hands. Twisting them around curiously she put them in her pouch of other goodies she had found as well. "well" she put her long tipped fingernails on her chin as she pondered his questions humming as she thought about it. "nothing till today when i got more angry then normal.. I am usually a very quiet person. Till the change i guess?" She shrugged and dropped her hand ever so slightly and started to spin bubbles out of no where and plopped the fish in them and swirled the bubbles around her playfully.
Maugrim listened to her explanation as he examined the crystals and thought for a moment. He'd then begin to spin the quickly and soon they were spinning very quickly that they became a blur. Soon others came in to a tighter axis as they spin and the outer rings began to shatter in the water and he then the ones on the inside began to glow their original colors. They floated there, glowing and emanating that energy. and he drew them closer to him. "Thank you, Sirenia." he says to her. And soon he clutched them both and he felt the shock in his chest. But he withstood the energy, and his eyes began to darken. "Ahh...." he says with a wider grin "I see.." he looked around as he began to draw the energy from the crystals as his fingers wrapped tightly over them.
Sirenia tilted her head as she played with the bubbles spinning around her she didn't even notice what he did but she felt the stir in the water near him. "Hum?" she said in a distracted tone. Looking up at him she pondered what he said for a moment. "Oh... yes no worries. " when she spoke all the bubbles around popped suddenly and the fish swam off in scurry. "Wait" her arms reached for the fish now gone. Sighing she crossed her arms in front of her. "Well darn...." She pouted.
Maugrim had drained the magic of the crystals and his scales began to darken themselves, and soon all the blue was gone and he smiled. The red remained, and even the cerulean color magic on his arms and in his eyes began to turn to a blood red color and he felt the magic coursing through him "Hmmm. if only you knew how to properly channel the crystals." his fangs poked through his teeth as his magic was being restored from his last home, with his dragon mistress. "I did not think it'd be so easy to have my old powers restored." he says. "If you find more crystals, you are to tell me immediately." he says to her.
Sirenia swam back away from him scared at his transformation. "What the heck just happened?" she asked trying to not swim away. "Drain what? " she questioned if he was evil. She held her staff protectedly in front of her.
Maugrim lifted a hand to her "Well, if you weren't distracted you may have seen what exactly happened." he explains to her "Back at my last home, I served among demons and a Reaper dragoness, she was my mistress. I met her when I was King and she summoned me to a place of nightmares and she changed my life." he says. "If I have my own way, she will return to me." he says. He looked to her as she held the trident defensively "Do not worry, Sirenia." he says "I am still very much me, and I will teach you how to harness your new abilities in ways you can control them." he says. "But you need not fear them, for they are now a part of you." he says. "This is a lot for you to process, but we are going to build a very strong shoal together, you and I." he says. "For now, I must go prepare a ritual so I may communicate with the bearer of my soul." he explains.
Sirenia she watched him go his own way and shook her head at what had just happened. Spinning around to head home herself she pondered what he ment.. Return to him? I hope I did not just make a pact with someone evil. But he promised he would help her. Staring off into the distance from her shell home she wondered what tomorrow would bring in this magic filled world. She set her trident next to her bed and she curled up and wrapped her tail around her. Closing her eyes to dream of dreams of her old life.