The real me

It was an unusually quiet evening. The stars were shining brightly on the night sky, and the moon was slowly growing up.

She was walking on the beach, her feet kicking the still warm sand, and her blue orbits fixed beyond the black waters of the ocean.

Rikki sighed, reaching up with her hands to fix her messy bun.

She had wandered around for what were a good two and a half hours now, but she still didn't feel like going home or anywhere else for that matter.

Her eyes found Mako Island and fixed on it.

It was her only home. Her real home.

Not that the trailer she lived with her dad wasn't home for her too. The island was just different.

She was a strong, independent woman, and being the loner she was, this place, Mako Island, was everything she needed.

The walks beneath the trees, the swims to the moon pool, the fact this place wasn't from the Earth, but was made of a moon rock...all of that was reflecting her real identity.

Identity of something not quite human, identity of something...magical.

Thinking about that and most of all about her future made her wonder what laid ahead for her. Because she herself wasn't sure what she was going to do with her life from now on.

Bella had said more than once that she's really enjoying singing with the band and was happy to do that for a long, long time. She was planning on becoming a professional singer, and later when she feels ready for it, she mentioned about marriage. Whether or not with Will - only time would tell.

Cleo was more than satisfied with her job as an assistant dolphin trainer at the marine park. The payment was more than good, the people were really nice and she absolutely loved spending time with Ronnie. As for the future, she hoped that when Lewis finished studying in America, they'd move in together (regardless of her father's constant objections) and would eventually get married and start a family with two beautiful children.

Even Emma, who had come back at the Gold Coast from travelling around the world, had said more than once how happy she was to be reunited with everybody, including Ash. She had recently got back with him, and they were really happy together. She was more than glad Ash had agreed for them to take it slowly, and he was glad to have her back in his life. She was studying in the local university, and was working on shifts at the "Rikki's" cafe. In her future she was seeing herself as a successful woman, probably married to Ash and having a beautiful daughter.

All of them had a plan and knew where they were headed to. Only Rikki was drifting on the surface and was happy to just enjoy the moment.

Still, there were times, like this one for instance, when she was trying to imagine her future.

She could never see herself as a business woman or wife or a mother. She hated, absolutely loathed the thought of being married, of being committed to someone.

Not that she was planning to live alone 'till the end of her days. If she meets, no, when she meets someone who was handsome and open-minded and adventurous, someone who would understand her the way she needed and would love her the way she was, she would be more than happy to move in with him. She wouldn't marry him, she would just move in with him. Because in her eyes marriage was simply overrated.

For Zane, Rikki just concluded that they were too different and weren't meant to be.

"And as for kids", She thought, "If it happens, it happens." She wasn't planning of having any, but this was only for destiny to tell.

Reaching the end of the beach where there were some high cliffs, she stopped for a moment and turned towards the water.

"Tempting, isn't it?!" A voice behind her playfully said.

She spun around in a heartbeat.

"Zane?!" She breathed. "What are you doing here? Are you stalking me?!"

She frowned a bit, crossing her hands in front of her chest.

He only smirked at her direction, slowly walking towards her. His hair was being playfully blown by the wind. He was wearing her favourite black, leather jacket of his, black t-shirt and black jeans. There was some strange sparkle in his dreamy brown eyes, and Rikki couldn't decide if it was only the reflection of the stars or something else. Either way, despite herself, she found that amusingly attractive.

"What are you doing here? Out for a night walk?!"

" 'Could say that, yeah. I just needed to think."

Rikki turned around to look at the ocean again. She felt Zane reaching her and standing next to her.

The moon was still a small shape, but was making a golden sparkle on the dark surface of the water. The stars were shining brightly, bathing both of them in a dim light.

"It's beautiful." Zane said, staring at the water too.

Rikki only nodded.

"So what is it you're doing here?"

They both move their heads and their eyes locked into each other's.

"I needed to think." He answered simply.

She felt a sudden urge to kiss him, but move her head away, staring out beyond the horizon again.

She heard him sigh.

"If you want to go out for a swim, go ahead and do it."

He said it as if it wasn't a big deal, but for the first time ever she sensed a hidden trace of warmth in his words. He didn't mind her go for a swim, he was suggesting it himself. She couldn't put her finger to it, but somehow he had finally began to actually accept her mermaid identity.

Rikki shooted what was supposed to be a hidden smile at his direction.

"I don't feel like a swim right now."

"Will you walk with me then?"

"Sure." She shrugged. "I don't see why not."

They started slowly walking back to the other side of the beach. At first they were silent, and only the soft sound of the waves washing the sand could be heard.

"What was it?" He suddenly asked out of the blue.

"What was what?!" Rikki asked confused.

"What was it that split up your parents?"

Rikki sighed and rolled her eyes. "You already know."

"I don't believe arguing over money was the only reason for your mother to just leave you two."

Rikki turned to look at him. "Why do you ask me that?"

He shrugged. "I just want to know."

Rikki shook her head. "Like I'd already told you, they were always arguing about money. One day when I woke up my mother was gone. That's all. Now can we just change the topic?!"

"Yeah, sorry."

They continued walking in silence.

"I'm sorry."

"What?!"

"I'm sorry. It was Sophie who kissed me on that boat. I never meant to hurt you. I'd never do such thing."

She felt strange warmth filling her heart.

"And I'm sorry for that stupid threat. You should know I'd never tell your secret, because I would never risk your freedom or your life."

He was looking her straight in the eyes, them standing on the beach, their hairs blown by the wind. It was like he was John Smith and she was Pocahontas, except he was brunette and she was blond, and they were both standing on the beach, not on two rocks situated at the different parts of the river.

He hesitated, then reached with his hand and pulled a piece of her beautiful curly hair behind her ear. He then rubbed her cheek gently with his thumb. Her face was shunned by the moon and her eyes were glowing, reflecting the stars on the night sky above them.

"You're so beautiful."

"Whatever you're trying to achieve, it's not working."

"It's the truth." He smiled softly at her.

A barely visible smile ran through her lips and for a moment he thought she was going to kiss him, but then she moved to look at the water again.

"You're right, you know?! It is tempting!"

"What are you afraid of?"

A smile ran through her lips.

"You still remember?!"

"I will never forget!" And he smiled to her. "You know up there what helped me calm down...was you."

"Yes, I told to you to imagine I was a painting or a speed boat or some stupid car, anything that makes you happy."

"But I didn't."

"What?!" Rikki raised her eyebrows, her blue orbits fixed on his dark ones. "But after I told to you to imagine those stuff you calmed down."

"Like I said, it was you who helped me calm down. You sparkling eyes, you're beautiful smile, the way you were looking at me and you are looking at me right now. You were and are the thing that makes me happy! And I'll never forgive myself for letting you go."

He turned to look at the water, breaking their eye contact.

"I feel like I'm that stupid jolly sailor bold from the song and you're the siren that seduced him, capturing his heart and then left him to his misery."

Rikki's heart suddenly ached.

"I'm so not like her, though. I have a heart."

"Sometimes I begin to doubt that." He said with a trace of bitterness in his voice.

She crossed her arms in front of her chest.

"What the hell is that supposed to mean?!"

"Nothing. It's just...you..you turn people down too easy, ok?! You always say and do what you think is right and you don't care about the others' feelings or opinion."

"So not true!"

"It is."

Rikki started to get angry. "I'm sorry that me being honest and doing what I think is right bothers you so much!"

Zane turned to look at her. "And I'm sorry for doing what I think is right."

She raised her eyebrows. "What do you-"

But before she could even finish, he took her face in his hands, pressing his lips against hers.

They felt lost in the moment and into their passionate kiss.

She realized she had missed his lips almost as much as he had missed hers. After staying like that for a couple of seconds they reluctantly pulled away.

"Wow." Rikki breathed. "That was-"

"Totally and absolutely awesome!"

That made the curly blond let out a chuckle. "Yeah. Right."

He smiled. "Glad you like it."

Suddenly looking at her smile, her image on that balcony popped up in his mind again. He turned to look towards the water again.

"So...what are you scared of?"

She turned around too, staring beyond the horizon deep in thoughts.

"Losing myself."

And before Zane could say another word Rikki ran towards the water, dove in and swam away.

"Funny." He thought, staring at the small circles left by her doving in. "You already have."


a/n: This is a small Rikki/Zane oneshot. It's not romantic or anything, I just tried to describe best their personalities and I hope I've succeeded. If not..oh well, I will handle it. :D Anyway, enjoy! Dedicated to my bestie WannaBeeAussie ! Hope you'll like it hun! :*