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The three stared at that man-ball thing.

It seemed to take no notice of it, but just continued smiling that eerie grin of his. Allen could feel the shivers going down the two eels' spines from the position the three of them were entangled in. He was pretty sure they could feel his too.

The thing chuckled happily. "You should not quarrel amongst yourselves, my dears. It spoils relationships between people. Hush," he simpered as the twins opened their mouths to protest. "Now, what can I do for you? Allen Walker~"

Allen noticed that the two eels were moving their mouths desperately, trying to say something, yet no sound came out. That had been enough to terrify him and hold him in his tracks already. But the thing had to go on further to call his full name in that creepy-to-the-bottom-of-the-ocean way of his. Allen felt like someone had dumped him in the waters at Antarctica and left him to freeze to death there.

He opened his mouth with much difficulty, finally forcing the words out of his mouth. "N-Nothing. I think I s-should just go now..."

The glasses glinted under the dim light.

"No, no. All who come here have one strong burning desire deep in their hearts. Tell me Allen, what is it that you really want?"

Allen remained where he was standing.

What I really want.

It echoed in him, searching out his deepest desire.

What do I really want?

To explore the world above, to see what is it like. To explore the wonders of the land above and seek out treasures never known to mermaids.

But what he really wanted was to show that peace can exist between the humans and the mermaids. To show that not all humans were evil. He believed that there was at least one human out there who would not want to eliminate the mermaids if their existence was known. Even though he had never met a human up close (except for that one time), he just knew. He could not explain it. It was just some instinct that told him so. That's why he wanted to be a human.

"What is it that you truly desire?"

To become a human. Allen thought forlornly, knowing that was impossible, not realizing he had voiced his thoughts out loud.

"Is that all?" The Earl grinned even wider. "No problem! Consider it done~"

Faster than Allen would have thought possible, the Earl whipped out a small bottle within his coat.

The tiny bottle was diamond-shaped and transparent, revealing a mauve liquid within. The liquid swirled in its confinement, captivating Allen.

Huh.

So this bottle changes my fate once and for all is it?

Allen looked up at the extremely pleased-looking Earl.

"Are you kidding me?"

...

"Allen~"

"..."

"This liquid can change you into a human~ Just one gulp and that's all it takes."

He was ignored.

"What harm could there be anyway?"

He received a pointed look that clearly said I should be the one asking you.

The Earl felt slightly insulted.

"Well... If you don't want it, I guess I'll just give it to someone else who wants it~"

The Earl did not miss the gaze of the aristocrat follow the motion of the potion as he made the move to pocket the bottle. He grinned widely.

The brown-haired mermaid did not know what to do.

Maybe he should give it a chance.

But what if it ended up turning him into seaweed or floating plankton?

He could just imagine it. The headlines on the Mermaids Daily:

Young prince turns into a vegetable after drinking purple juice

It was not really the fact that he doubted the Earl's skills that he did not want to drink it. The whole time Allen had felt like something was missing. Like there was a very important detail that the grinning psycho had left out. But what was it?

To drink or not to drink?

Allen wished for a moment that life was a gamble. Then he could cheat his way through.

The bottle was set on the table, right in front of Allen's grasp.

The message was clear.

Allen was being offered the chance of a lifetime now. All he had to do was to decide whether to take it or not. If he missed it, game over.

His hand reached out hesitantly towards the bottle.

The cork was unscrewed and the liquid spilled down the mermaid's throat, down the esophagus, and into the black vacuum of a stomach.

The grin stretched.

"Now Allen dear~"

The hair on said mermaid's neck rose.

"You have only one month for someone to see past your deformities and yet love you for who you are. Otherwise you'll turn back to mermaid and under my power."

What?

WHAT?!

Allen blinked slowly. Once. Twice.

"What?"

Suddenly, the creepy grin that was always present somehow seemed to turn evil. And that's when the poor, gullible mermaid realized that he might have made a tremendous mistake. He really should not have trusted people acquainted with eels in the first place.

"Did I forget to mention?" the Earl asked Allen, glasses glinting. "The potion, although it changes you into a human, it will deform part of you as well."

As the information oiled the gears in Allen's brain, they slowly clicked into place, and the machine started to whir. Suddenly, Allen felt a strange feeling rise up within him. He never felt anything like it before. As he looked at the Earl's face, it seemed to become stronger and stronger. After a while, he realized what it was. He wanted to kill the flipping psycho in front of him.

"The potion wears off after one month!~ You'll then change back into a mermaid under my control unless someone loves you for who you are!"

Just when Allen was about to get blood on his hands, it hit him.

Agony clutched him tightly in its grip, causing him to bend over in pain.

What...what is this?

Millions of needles were piercing him, all over his body. Burning hot pain enveloped him and he gritted his teeth, accidentally biting his lip and drawing blood. It was as if someone had taken a knife and drove it through his tail.

A mist surrounded Allen's consciousness. He couldn't think straight. He fought hard to get out of the haze but to no avail. The darkness was coming towards him.

Just before the darkness consumed him utterly, the Earl's voice travelled from somewhere far in the distance.

"Remember~ One month."

...

The dark-skinned Portuguese looked down on the white-haired boy lying on the beach.

He sighed and took another long drag of his cigarette.

Once more, he cursed himself for ever knowing the Earl. He never gave him anything but trouble. This time it came in the package of a mermaid-turned-human. He contemplated ditching the boy but the Earl would really kill him then and as much as he hated to admit it, the part of his conscience that remained- yes; he still had a conscience despite popular belief- felt bad leaving the poor kid to fend for himself in a world he did not understand.

The kid was what? Only fifteen according to that grinning psychopath.

The figure on the sand stirred slightly

Ah. He was awake now.

One grey eye blinked open.

...

There was a giant migraine in Allen's head. Unconsciously, he lifted one hand and rubbed his forehead, trying to ease the pain.

Strangely, his surroundings were warm, unlike the cool waters he was used to. And there were these really uncomfortable tiny particles digging into his skin.

Wait a second.

Allen's eye shot open in horror.

There was a tall figure standing in front of him but he took no notice of it right then. He was too occupied trying to figure out what the hell had the Earl done to him.

Was this heaven?

After all, there was a bright yellow speck above him, surrounded by white fluffy clouds, complete with an azure blue background. Around Allen were blindingly white sand, and a few palm trees swayed in the breeze. Allen was pretty sure this was where God resided.

Shit. The Earl had sent him away from his much beloved mortal life. He couldn't die yet. He still had a lot of things to do in his life!

Allen quickly moved his legs in an attempt to stand up and promptly fell down again.

His legs.

His legs.

Allen couldn't comprehend what was going on. His mind was in a complete state of shock. Almost in wonderment, Allen moved his hands down his legs, seeing if they were real. His legs. It still felt strange, as if everything was a dream. The silver tail he was used to was gone, now replaced by new limbs. The Earl had actually succeeded in turning him into a human.

Then he realized something else.

His arm.

More accurately, his left arm.

The fair skin free of blemishes was now black and scaly.

His eyes widened as he took in the painful truth. His arm, was disfigured.

Before he could hyperventilate, something soft was thrown at him.

Puzzled, he looked up at the man he had ignored previously and held the long white object in one hand.

The dark-skinned man sighed.

"Use the towel to cover yourself up."

Towel probably meant the thing that was thrown to him. Allen looked down on his body and pondered if the strange man was referring to his deformed arm, about to feel hurt before he realized that he was possibly referring to...

Turning a bright pink, the former mermaid quickly wrapped the towel around his waist.

Looking up at his newfound savior, there was something akin to trust and worship in the boy's eyes as he waited for the man to tell him what to do next.

...

Tyki mentally smacked himself on the forehead.

Now what was he suppose to do?

From the look in the boy's eyes, he could tell that he had just acquired a puppy.

Life was going on just fantastic.

Snubbing the cigarette out, Tyki bent down, offering one hand to the boy, Allen was it?

...

Slightly confused, Allen grabbed onto the older man's hand nonetheless, pulling himself up.

Allen wiggled his toe, still amazed by the fact that he had actually acquired legs.

"Do you know how to walk?"

A blank look was his answer.

Sighing, the Portuguese spent over an hour under the beautiful weather teaching a fifteen year old boy how to walk as the coconut trees swayed in the distance.

"Ok, now you try."

Allowing a confident smile to blossom on his face, Allen took a step forward.

And another.

And another.

And ano-

-ther second he fell down, flat on his face.

His (lousy) teacher ran forward to check if he had sustained any injuries. Even though he refuses to admit it, he actually develops motherly feelings towards young people after spending some time with them, for example, his niece. (But most people regard him as a pedophile)

When Allen lifted his face up, it was entirely covered with sand. His mouth in particular. Wrinkling his face in disgust, he spat out the grainy particles out. And then, there was a growl.

"Please, tell me this is not what you humans eat."

Tyki face-palmed.

A/N: I apologise. For taking so long to update and coming up with something so crappy. I had my exams and then I'm away in Taiwan now for an immersion programme. Which means a LOT of homework and I don't have that funny feeling in my stomach that propels me to writeD: BUT, reviews are still much appreciated. Just one can make me happy for a whole day:)))

Btw, any errors please point out to me, I was too lazy to check it through.