Once Upon a Time: The Little Mermaid – Toshiro's Journey

Requested By: Kazeek

Genre: Alternate Universe, Fantasy, Shojo, Adventure
Anime/Manga: Bleach
Characters: Toshiro Hitsugaya, Momo Hinamori, Rangiku Matsumoto
Summary: Life without legs takes some time getting used to, but time becomes precious when Momo is snatched away by an immortal intent on reigning over the seven seas. As Toshiro rushes to her rescue, he is quick to discover that not all merpeople advocate a love – or even a liking – for humans. His own tail cannot erase the legs he was brought up upon. And the tragic tales of a human-mermaid relationship runs thick amongst the merpeople. Will he succumb to the signs of an impossible love?

Important: This is a sequel to my fanfiction entitled: Once Upon a Time: The Little Mermaid. HOWEVER, you do not need to read it to be able to follow this fanfiction (and it is better if you do not, for my writing back then was…ahem…not the best I'm afraid). If you know the Anderson and Disney's The Little Mermaid, and are able to merge them together, you've got the basic plotline of my first. I'll brief you on the important points below.

Rundown of Important Points in Once Upon a Time: The Little Mermaid:

- Momo Hinamori is a mermaid, and the youngest of seven daughters to the ruler of the underwater kingdom.
- All mermaids have an animal familiar. The zanpakutous are the familiars of any Bleach characters.
- Certain mermaids have the ability to use magic, in which the user chants the spell and their familiar releases the magic.
- Toshiro is a human and a prince of a country on the land, however near the end of the first fanfiction, he gains the ability to transform into a merman.
- Likewise Momo can switch between forms as well, due to the terms of the contract she signed with the sea witch (deceased).
- Hitsuhina completed in my first, so they are together as of the beginning of this sequel.

If at any point during the storyline you are confused, don't hesitate to drop questions at me. I'll place a list of familiars in the A/N of my next chapter.


Prologue

The night was clear and the moon was perched on the pinnacle of its arc. Stars shone like the twinkle of a knowing goddess's eyes and the cool gust of wind lifted up the water as it passed by, leaving the blue sheets to bow as gravity pushed on their descent. Spindrift was alive in the air, dancing and swirling along the gentle caresses of the air.

The brilliance of the night covered all, unbiased in where it chose to reveal its beauty. It reached even the black of the waters that submerged a cavern many leagues over - its depth was near unfathomable.

All manner of sea life gave this place a wide berth, for its inky waters reeked of evil and death. Large stone spires pierced the surface of the ocean, as if trying to tear their way through the heavens. They formed no discernable pattern, but their mere presence fed the tiny waves until they grew into heavy swells that tossed and crashed like a cauldron bubbling over. Sometimes the sea was calm, but its anger was always waiting to snare an ignorant vessel who was captivated by the glimmers set on the stone. Once caught, you were either smashed against the rocks or thrown into the hungry sea.

Either way there was only death at the end.

And it was always waiting, there at the Siren's Claw.

From afar it promised salvation for the weary, a point of reference for the lost, a light of hope for those clinging onto life – it was beautiful deceit. The Siren's Claw was not meant for the living, yet deep below on that night, something stirred within the folded arms of its depths.

The waters stayed ever still as a trail of small bubbles rose and broke at the first contact with the salty air. They continued their ascent towards the surface, growing larger and larger until the waters abandoned their calm and ripples marred the surface. The sea was foaming; large bubbles exploded, hurtling pellets of droplets in a wide circumference.

It was deep, deep below that the source of the tumult was found – the twisted cavern at the base of a ravine. The mouth bared a dangerous set of fangs: misshapen stalagmite and stalactite that were provided with time and isolation to mutate.

The ground began to quake and the cavern let out a deafening roar, like a hungry bear awakening from its long hibernation. Its den was no longer a sanctuary from the elements, but the walls of a prison it was all too eager to escape from. The tremors magnified, sending its strength tearing through the cavern, ripping off its rocky spirals. The chaos escalated and when it reached the climax, the point where the bear would break from its cave in an intimidating state of raw power, nothing emerged. Everything – the shaking, the bubbling – everything receded and the sea was calm once again.

And only when it was safe to assume that it was gone did it truly expose itself.

At the end of the cavern where a stretch of marbled, rocky wall should have been, there was instead a wall of jagged purple crystal. With the waters quiet and settled, a small crack tore from the base, the sound of it splitting through the crystal amplified in the silence.

Another crack appeared, larger, deeper and sounding more akin to a cleaver making a clean chop through the bones of the slaughtered. And another and another, making tortuous journies through the crystal until the wall burst open in a violent shower of jagged purple shards.

A figure enshrouded in darkness broke free from the falling debris. He was so dark that the waters paled in comparison. Twin tails propelled him upwards in a single, fluid motion, as if even the water parted ways for him. It was not his head that broke the surface, but his arm, arched back with taloned fingers trying to rip at the moon. The laugh that escaped from his twisted lips promised more evil than that of the Siren's Claw.

His fingers – unnaturally long and webbed to the first joint – swept across the four tallest spires of the Claw. The rock began breaking and crumbling away, boulders dropping into the sea, until it was revealed that they were more than rock. They were a place of confinement.

Four pairs of eyes opened, blinking their vertigo away. Pulling their bodies away from the weakened pillars, they dove into the water and converged on their master. He grinned – a maniacal display of teeth and gum – and let his laughter infect the night sky.

"At last, I am free once again!"