Disclaimer- here you go guys! As always I don't own the Little Mermaid that is the talent of Hans Christian Anderson but Arianna and Phillip are my creations..Enjoy them!!
Ch 12- Two Princes
Arianna never thought she would be happy to see Ursula's Lair again. All this swimming was making her super tired, yet giving her a workout, but she actually couldn't wait to be able to walk again. And she see Phillip! She wondered how he was holding up. He's probably fine, he should figure out where I am, at least Ariel's help.
"Finally." Cephan said.
Arianna laughed. She turned to face him. "Thanks for everything, Cephan. I don't know what I'd have done without you! I guess I would belong to Ursula, or be banished to God-knows-where for attempting to steal the actual shell."
"No problem, Arianna. Wait, I do have one problem though." he said, taking a hold of her hand.
"What's that?" she asked.
"How…" Cephan started.
"…much longer until you give me that shell and end this love fest?" Ursula said, coming out of the shadows of the tent flap.
"This isn't a…"
"Enough!" Ursula said. Arianna removed the shell from her neck and handed it to Ursula.
Ursula took it and swam back into the tent. Arianna followed her.
"Um, excuse me. What about your part of the bargain?"
Ursula turned around. "My part? Oh right." She snapped her fingers.
Arianna felt as if her tail was being ripped in two! Which it was since Ursula changed back into a human. Her breath was ripped out of her and she could no longer breathe underwater. She flailed about and Cephan regaining whatever consciousness he had lost, grabbed her and quickly swam her to the surface as fast as his tail could carry the both of them. Cephan prayed she wouldn't lose consciousness before they reached the surface.
Arianna's head broke the surface and Cephan swam her to the shore. She clung to him, as weak as she normally was, as she was trying to catch her breath as well as her bearings.
"Cephan." she whispered, though it hurt to say because of all the salt water she had swallowed.
"Shhh." he said. "We'll talk later."
She nodded and drifted into sleep.
Ariel came running up just as Cephan laid Arianna on the shore.
"Cephan!" Ariel said. "Oh thank God you found her! Eric came running up right after Ariel.
"Cephan." Arianna whispered.
He shushed her and she fell asleep.
"What happened to her?" Eric asked.
"Ursula turned her back into a human while she was still underwater, a good hundred miles under." he replied, touching her cheek,
"Eric, could you please go get Phillip. Let him know we found her." Eric nodded and ran back to the castle.
"Cephan, what happened down there?" Ariel asked.
"Ursula turned her…"
"No, I mean between you and Arianna. I know you, you have feeling for her I can tell. But you can't, Cephan! She's engaged."
"Ariel I know. You know I know that and I couldn't help it. I mean, we did kiss and…"
"You kissed her?!"
Cephan nodded. "All feelings, she returned."
"No, Cephan. " she shook her head. "I highly doubt that, It was probably one of those in the moment feelings. She's engages and you can't break that. She belongs with Phillip on land!"
"But what about you? You were turned into a human and as soon as Eric kisses you today, you'll remain one. I'll be alone and what about your father, Ariel? He is having the entire kingdom searching for you. He's worried sick!"
"Is that what you're worried about, you'll be alone? Cephan, you're a super sweet guy. You'll find a girl, trust me."
Cephan sighed. "Here comes her 'lord' now." he said, looking over Ariel's shoulder.
"Arianna!" Phillip called.
Arianna had heard the entire conversation between Ariel and Cephan. I knew he had feelings for me and of course I had to go and lead him on when we kissed at Devin's house. Any other time, I would have returned them instantly, but unfortunately I already gave my heart to Phillip. WAIT! What am I saying/thinking, I met Phillip first and he is truly the one for me…right? I mean Cephan lives under the sea and I am a human..again. It be a very long distance relationship. Ok Arianna stop this nonsense. You are engaged to Phillip. Enough about Cephan. Next time I keep my desires to myself and not show them to the Evil Sea Witch.
"Arianna!" Phillip called. She opened her eyes to see him running towards her. She smiled at him as he arrived.
"Phillip." she said.
"Hi." he said, helping her sit up. She hugged him as tightly as she could. She was so happy to see him.
"Hi." she replied back, her throat still sore.
"I've been worried sick about you." he said.
"I know and I'll tell you all about it. I promise.."
"..once she gets back to the castle and gets something warm to drink." Cephan answered for her.
Phillip looked at Cephan, at his fin, and back at him. "You're a mermaid too?"
"Merman." Cephan corrected. He was not very happy to see Cephan. "But yes."
"Did Arianna finish her quest?" Ariel asked, breaking up the awkward silence.
"Yes, her quest was to acquire your mother's shell."
Ariel gasped. "She stole the shell from my father?"
"No, we went to Devin's and he made us a replica."
"You took her to Devin's?!"
"Yes. What other choice did we have."
"Plenty! Anything but Devin's! Well at least Ursula has the fake and she was never good at spotting fakes from real anyway."
"Phillip, let's take Arianna back to the castle. Though we have to avoid your family."
"Cephan, I'll talk to you later. I'll send a shell message when she wakes up."
Phillip carried Arianna to her bedroom where she woke up a few hours later.
Phillip had hot chocolate for her and she happily accepted it and her throat instantly felt better.
"I'm sorry for scaring you." she said.
"What happened to you?" he asked.
Arianna took a deep breath and began. "I was standing next to Ariel and in the next minute I blinked and was 200 miles under the sea."
"Ursula somehow found out about me being Ariel's human friend and found our my desire to be a mermaid and she made it come true. For a price of course. In return, she made me look for a one-of-a-kind shell that just so happened to belong to Ariel's father. Since King Triton always wore it, there was no way to get it away from him. So Cephan's friend, who had made the original one, made us a replicate one and Ursula bought that it was the actual shell. Then I went to ask her to keep her part of the bargain, she changed me back into a human yet while I was still 200 miles under. Thank God Cephan was there or I'd be dead now." she finished.
Phillip sat there for a minute. "Do you have feelings for Cephan?" he asked, tensing for her reply.
She shook her head and took his hand. "No, the entire time I was down there I kept thinking how you were and how you were holding up. Though I did suppose you were fine and should have figured out where I was…but I guess you didn't.
"No, I could barely sleep at night knowing that I had no idea you were."
"I'm really sorry. Come here." she said. He slipped his shoes off and climbed into the bed. He held her while she drifted off to asleep in his arms. All was alright for now she thought before nestling closer to his chest and finally falling asleep.