A Mermaid's Lair

Palm Tree Island - Mermaid's Bedchamber

While nobody truly lives here within this tiny cavern, still the way the rocks have been worn by the tide and time seem to almost lend the illusion of a woman's chamber, one that might only be reached by a determined swimmer, or by a woman with the tail of a fish. A pool of seawater dominates the center part of this cave — narrow rocky outcroppings against the walls don't provide much respite for anyone to perch or cling to, merely lending ambiance and the semblance of a bedchamber to the room by the way they have been shaped and carved by natural means. A long narrow ledge is piled with seagrass and kelp washed in by the waters, looking almost like a neatly made bed, while another outcrop of rock has little shells and stones arrayed on it the way a fine lady might array her makeup on a vanity — it even has reflective flecks of shiny mica and quartz embedded in the rock behind it, almost like a mirror.


Midday has settled on the island and most of the candidates have wandered off on various tasks - whatever those may be. Some go to explore, some build or make nets, some simply sit and whine while grudgingly helping (or not) and then there's those who have figured out how to hunt for food. A small group have wandered to the lagoon and begun the attempt to fish, with varying success. However, one in particular seemed to grow restless and when they all took a break, quietly slipped away to wander the sandy shore. It doesn't take long, however, before Kelthero has found something of interest and being one of the stronger swimmers he goes into the water to investigate. He's gone but for a short moment before returning to the surface, excitement quite evident as he calls out to the others. News of the discovery goes out - an underwater cave! The former guard doesn't wait to see who would follow though. Once he's shared the find, he's back under the water and then resurfacing within the chamber, gasping for air and immediately reaching out for the nearest rock to anchor himself with. As he catches his breath, his gaze wanders slowly around the cavern, as dimly lit as it is.

Kershaw joins Kelthero in the cave, he looks around the dimly lit cavern and smiles, "Quite the find you have there Kelthero it's quite impressive bit of a swim to get here but well worth the effort. Wonder if this was a hideout for bandits or smugglers you know a place to keep their valuables and such." Kershaw carries a closer inspection of the cavern wanting to see if there is a treasure somewhere inside the place.

Jey is one of the fishing group. Not that she'd be with any other group considering she's a dolphineer and all. When there's news of the underwater cave, Jey is more than excited and quick to join the little group. Strong swimmer? Maaaybeeee. It isn't long before the dolphineer surfaces in the small area and she lets out a low whistle after looking around. "It's really nice down here." Or so /she/ thinks at least.

Amongst those fishing is Kiley, quietly taking a break to fix some of the vine nets when the call of underwater cave is heralded. Curiosity piqued, she follows the rest out into the water and down into the depths of the ocean in which they came across the cave. Once she finally surfaces into a spacious place to breathe, a deep breath is taken and the hair is pushed from her face to give her a better view of their surrounds. "Wow! This is amazing." The computer crafter is certainly awestruck from the tone of her voice as she makes her way to join Kelthero and Jeyinshi. But, her path is turning and exploring begins rather than standing around.

Fortunately, Keelyra did remember to pack a swimsuit. She may have had inklings of the cave from her previous explorations — under the guise of hunting — of the island. Good to know your limits and all. Still, a group going out to one of the more secretive spots is always a good time and she's soon following after in a one-piece deal colored in greens with various shaded sworls. Her hair has been put into a rough braid and sticks out at strange angles as she surfaces.

Kelthero's observations will have to wait it seems as Kershaw suddenly joins him. "I just hope if anyone follows they can swim." He then grimaces at the thought of one of them getting caught and drowning, but worry of that will have to wait. Shrugging his shoulders a little, he pushes off from the rock and begins to slowly move across the pool, narrowly missing colliding with Jeyinshi when she arrives. Suddenly, the whole chamber seems to be erupting in candidates. "Shells, news traveled fast." He mutters, before glancing back to Kershaw. "No idea what this is. Guess we'll find out?" There's a broad grin given to Jeyinshi and Kiley, which then includes Keelyra when she joins them. "Not much room in here though. Doubtful if it was actually used or just… happens to be here." Eventually, Kelthero comes to settle again by another out cropping of rock that he can use to anchor himself. As good as he is with swimming, he has to take a break at some point. He frowns a little. "Doesn't look like there's anywhere to really sit."

Kershaw nods his head, "You could well be right, though am sure we might be able to find a use for it if we really tried to think about it. I've heard of caves formed by wave action some of them quite large too." Kershaw moves out of the others that are emerging into the cavern, careful not to accidentally step on anyone "Doesn't surprise me Kelthero look how fast news can travel at the Weyr, this place is a lot smaller so it takes even less time for things to spread." He smiles as more candidates join them "wonder how many more this place can hold?"

Jeyinshi grins at the arriving candidates and catches the last bit of the conversation as she joins in. "Well. I /am/ trained in search and rescue. Should there be any candidates ready to drown I'll consider saving them." She chuckles softly at her 'joke' before also peering around the cavern. "Maybe it was some sort of storage thing. I've seen a few underwater caves before that were used for that. This one's different though. More like a room that people would actually use…like a bedroom or something?"

Keelyra flashes a grin back at kelthero, flicking legs back and forth under the water to keep self afloat. She grabs on to an outcropping to hold onto a bit. "Looks a bit too small to be a proper bedroom," she says, glancing around. "I like the spot behind th'waterfall better, I think. This is… well, I could get tired quickly."

Kiley grins widely in response to Kelthero. "This was a good find.. We could probably just hag onto the outcroppings over there," point, "and there." Another point. And Keely is already doing so. The computer crafter comes on over and clings on as well. "There's something behind the waterfall? I'd like to check that out after we finish preparing the fish for dinner." Lingering there on the outcrop, she smiles and then peers back at Jeyinshi for her joke. Mouth opens and then close and she chuckles softly. "I don't think anyone could use this as a proper bedroom. If you roll off the bed you'll fall into the water."

Apparently, Kelthero knows little to nothing about caves or how they're created, so Kershaw gets a curious, but puzzled glance. "I didn't know that." He admits. Eventually, the candidate's expression just goes blank, no doubt giving up trying to wrap his head around that thought. "But I should have known it would spread. Forgot we're all condensed on this island." He then shrugs his shoulders, uncertain. It would seem even with all of them here now there's still enough room to move about comfortably - for now. Then he's side glancing to Jeyinshi and a smirk works its way slowly onto his features. "You'd… /consider/ rescuing us?" he teases her, before giving her a level look. "Don't even think about sleeping in here, Jey." Right. Stick to the trees. At the mention of the waterfall, Kelthero frowns a little when he glances over to Keelyra. "Oh? There's another location?" he asks, even as he begins to investigate the narrow ledge. As Kiley points out possible anchor points to hang on, the former guard grins a little. "They'll do for now, but it'd be nice if you could actually get /out/ of the water."

Kershaw nods in agreement with Kelthero, "You'd get quite the wake up once you hit the water that's certain and not sure what the tides might do to the water levels in here either. Waking up with water up to your chin would probably be a little uncomfortable and sleep probably unlikely." Kershaw moves around the cave using the ledges to help propel him from place to place as he looks for signs of anyone else having used this cave for anything at all but has had no luck in discovering signs or treasure for that matter.

"Yeh," Keelyra says with a brief grin. "I decided t'wander 'round and see what the rest of th'island was like." She at least brought back some fruits for her efforts, to not be seen as /too/ lazy. Now that she's explored the plate, though, she'll be more diligent about things. "It's a better place fer hangin' out." She glances to where her hand clutches barely at an outcropping. "instead of just hangin' on."

Jeyinshi continues her hold on one of the outcrops and grins at Kiley. "That's the best part….Heyyyy. It'd be kind of nice to sleep in here Kelth!" Shards, plans foiled /already/? Then the dolphineer smirks a bit and lets go of her rock. "You'd be the last one I rescue of course." And then there's more comments about sleeping and Jey just sort of raises an eyebrow. "Meh. I'm a dolphineer. Sleeping in water is no biggie. And Sungie would come to help me if I really were in trouble. Then again…..I'm obviously a mermaid though so this won't be any problem." Woohoo! Some signature Jey-deadpan right there.

"It would be. But, I suppose we're not in luck for that." Kiley notes softly to Kelthero. "I suppose we could go back and check out the other cave. We'll dry off on the way over, I imagine." The computer crafter grins and then slowly releases the outcropping so that she may tread the water. As Jeyinshi takes off, her gaze follows and then she's nodding to the rest. "I think I'm going to head back and help with the fish so that I can go check out the other cave."

Keltherostarts to laugh, pausing in his investigation of the ledge to glance over his shoulder at Jeyinshi. "Sorry to disappoint again, Jey!" he muses, before snorting slightly. "Ha! I figured you would. Thankfully I can actually swim." Then he frowns a little in thought. "Uh, what's a mermaid?" he asks, fumbling a little with the unfamiliar term before turning his attention back to Keelyra. "I don't think I got that far." He says with a slight shrug of his shoulders and a bit of a lopsided smile. "I mean I found the stone monument with the face. Where's the waterfall?" Even as he asks, his attention seems to have refocused on the ledge. Gripping it as best he can, he attempts to haul himself up onto it, but the slick stone causes his hold to slip and he's promptly back in and under the water. Smooth, real smooth - he resurfaces, coughing slightly as he pushes back his hair from his face. "So much for that idea." He mutters, resorting to using it solely hang on to as he floats in the water, using his free hand to wave a little as both Kiley and Jeyinshi return to drier land.

Kershaw quirks an eyebrow at Kelthero's question, "You mean to tell me you've not heard tell of mermaids? I thought everyone knew of them, they're said to be half human and half fish, the top half being human the rest fish. Many a sailor has been rescued from drowning by what they describe as a mermaid, they say they are very beautiful and a man might be tempted to follow them into the sea." Stops exploring the cave for the moment and just holds onto one of the ledges "Who knows you might meet up with the mermaid that lives here Kelthero, maybe she'll invite you to stay with her?"

Keelyra giggles at Kelthero's splashing about, glancing to the 'bedroom' area. "I think th'mermaid tales came b'fore we knew about th'dolphins," Keelyra says. "Since folks had t'explain somehow th'talkin' an intelligence… No one wanted t'believe th'shipfish were doin' it." She gives a little shrug and starts paddling for the exit herself. "I'mma go dry off. Th'waterfall is round the beach, from that other path. Y'follow it into a gully an' then there's a waterfall. There's some neat caverns in there. One even echoes!"

Kelthero can only stare at Kershaw in plainly visible confusion when the other candidate explains the mystery of the word 'mermaid'. He then shakes his head, exhaling slowly as he smiles crookedly. "Can't say I've ever heard of anything like it. Sounds… like something from Earth, though?" Realization dawns then and he tilts his head, confusing changing to curiosity as he glances between Kershaw and Keelyra now for confirmation. "Is it another one of their stories? Like the ghosts?" He then grimaces at the idea of staying here, mermaids or not. "I hope not. As fascinating as this cave is, it's not exactly good long term living conditions." As Keelyra shares the directions, Kelthero grins. "Thanks! Maybe I'll go seek it out later. We probably should all get back to the lagoon. They're probably getting ready to start up again." Finally pushing away from the ledge and giving up the hopes of finding a suitable place to sit. Seems like he's considering returning too, but not before one last pass.

Kershaw smiles, "Stories originated on earth but I've heard tell of them during my time aboard the Leaping Packtail and at different ports so I don't know if they came with us or if it's just something that is another tale from our earth history." Kershaw looks around and sighs, "I think I'll head out and see if I can be of anymore help with gathering food or what ever else is needed, have to say this was a lot of fun and I might make a trip back here from time to time." With that Kershaw heads out of the cavern and back to the rest of the island

"I guess so." Kelthero reluctantly admits to Kershaw's reasoning, though he seems to grow silent and brooding. Most likely, having been from a fishing family, he's beginning to wonder just how secluded his family truly was. Eventually though, he's forced to return as both Keelyra and Kershaw head back under the water. Kelthero lingers only long enough to give one last passing glance, gaze lingering on the small, neatly arranged stones and shells that look oddly out of place enough to hint a mirror. He frowns then, wondering and then shakes his head. Nah, it's all just simple Earth tales. With a shake of his head, he too then dives back under the water and leaves the cave behind.

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