Disclaimer: I do not own H2O:Just Add Water, it's characters, or any of the songs mentioned.
I brushed off the sand as I got up from Mako's beach. The mermaid part was awesome, don't get me wrong, but changing back was always annoying, for one reason or the other. But, you know, tonight I didn't mind so much. I smiled, thinking back. Of course, being a mermaid on a full moon was always interesting. I glanced up at the starry night sky, wearing my favorite red tank with my hair in a bun. Tonight wasn't a full moon, but almost, it looked full if you didn't look carefully. Emma and Cleo weren't so sure about me coming out here so close to one, in just two days, but I'm tired of being afraid of it and I wouldn't, shouldn't at least, be alone.
If he stands me up, I'll slap him. I shook my head smiling. No, I wouldn't be afraid of the moon anymore and that was part of why I was here. Tonight was perfect. I wonder what Zane thinks I'm up to. I don't think he'll guess, after I refused anything majorly special today, despite his protests. It's sweet that he wants to make today special, and so do I. I just want to do it my way. He seemed to be alright with that, or maybe it was his gift to me. For, it's Valentine's Day, well, night now. Valentine's Night on a nearly full moon, it was about as perfect a chance I would get.
I walked forward into the jungle a little ways and then, concentrating, let my hand brush over some of the trees and bushes as I got closer, further in. I looked back at my path, now ablaze, and smiled, nodding. Of course, I still don't remember exactly what happened that night and so much has happened since then, but I've pieced enough of it together to get it pretty close. I kept my hand brushing along my path, lifting it now and then. I didn't want to set the whole island on fire. There it is. I pause a moment, trying to remember, and smile. So much has changed since the first time Zane met me here. He knows our secret now and he's kept it.
Not too far away is the moon pool entrance and I walk past the clearing towards it. Hopefully Lewis wasn't too preoccupied with his dinner date with Cleo tonight to forget. I smiled as I came upon the entrance. I guess not, good, there was a boom box, cards, a few other things, and…sparkling cider. Ergh, Lewis. I'd asked him for liquor, but of course he's to goody-good boy for that. I sighed. Oh well, it would do. I picked them up and carried them back to the clearing, hiding them behind a bush just outside it. I looked around, the path was lit along with a few other trees…but, I think it needs a little more. I held out my hand to some patches of ground nearby and watched them light up with satisfaction. That seemed right. All that's left is to wait.
Knowing me when I get frustrated, I tend to just run away and curl up, make myself as small and invisible as possible, so I make a guess on where I'd have ended up that night, keeping in mind I wasn't entirely myself. In the middle of the dirt clearing, a few leaves on the ground, I sit down, bringing my knees up to my chest and wrapping my arms around. Yes, this felt right. I look up at the sky, at the moon, thinking back to earlier in the day.
I was at the Juice Net when Cleo came in and it had happened that we had come in at the same time as Emma had break, so she came over and joined us, "Hey girls."
"Hey Em, too bad you're on break, I was going to tell you to get me a cranberry smoothie," I smiled.
Emma shrugged and smiled, "Sorry, you'll have to wait. Cleo, what about you? Is there an order you want me to fill in half an hour, too?"
Cleo smiled, a little absent, "Maybe. I'll have to see what Lewis wants to do. All I know is he said to meet him here about this time."
I rolled my eyes, "You two lovebirds going out to dinner or something?"
"Just because you hate Valentine's Day, doesn't mean everyone has to," Emma retorted as Cleo blushed.
"We're going to the Marina Bell, but I don't know what we're doing till then."
I unsuccessfully tried to hide my grimace, but did manage, "Well, if you like that."
She had just shrugged, while Emma mentioned, "Byron and I are heading down by the beach when I get off."
I threw up my hands, "You guys are hopeless."
"Oh, come on, Rikki," Cleo had said, "You're with Zane now. It's Valentine's Day, you have to do something."
"No," I'd said, exasperated, "we don't," and then lowered my voice, "Alright, well not anything major. I'm just going to tell him to meet me at Mako tonight. I want to go there with him, without having to worry about any mermaid problems for once."
Emma had nodded, but seemed to think about something and Cleo had frowned, "It's a full moon in two days. Do you think you might be pushing it a bit being at Mako?"
"Being at Mako at night two days before a full moon will be no different than being at a restaurant," I'd argued.
Emma answered, "And Mrs. Chatum did say that Mako was actually the safest, but the moon shouldn't be a problem just yet. Cleo, you know that or you wouldn't be going out."
"Well, I'll be with Lewis, anyway."
"Whatever, it won't matter tonight," I tried to end and then Cleo apparently remembered something.
"Though, she didn't say Mako Island was the safest, Emma. She specified only the moon pool."
Emma seemed to think about for a moment and then shrugged, probably not wanting to worry about it too much when it didn't really matter, especially today. It was then that we heard the jangle of beads announcing someone's entrance and we all looked over. Emma put her hand to her mouth while Cleo just started laughing and I just stared at him. Did he not know me at all?
Zane had just walked in carrying roses and a chocolate box, looking around, smiling when he spotted us, "There were a couple spots I figured you might be. Figured I'd try here first. Happy Val-"
He didn't get any farther than that as he started to hand over his gifts to me, when I stood up, "Zane…just," then I sighed, it was sorta sweet, if not entirely cheesy. So, I continued, quieter and quickly "Bring those with you tonight when you meet me at Mako where you first found me there, on the full moon," I blushed. Apparently, that had been the first time I'd kissed him.
His face scrunched with confusion, "What? I thought we would,"
I cut him off again, with a quick kiss on the cheek, "And I say you're going to meet me at the clearing on Mako tonight at 8:30," and teased, "and if daddy has a problem with it, sneak out. Em, Cleo, have a great day. Never mind the smoothie. Zane, see you tonight. Bye!"
I laughed quietly, remembering, and then grew solemn, looking up for a moment when I heard the distant hum of a motorboat top and then footsteps. I leaned my head to the side, wanting to make sure. Yep, it was, but he wasn't quite here yet. I leaned my head down to my knees, smiling. What would he make of this? I wish I could see his face, but I need time to get mine under control.
"Rikki? Are you okay?"
I glanced up, fighting a smile for about half a second, "I'm fine."
He sat down next to me, shaking his head, "Am I allowed to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day now?" he asked with a slight laugh to his voice as he again held out the roses and chocolate. I smiled, accepting them and nodded.
Zane began to say something when I silenced him with a kiss, but a short one and then, "Wait right here for a second."
He was too surprised to do anything else as I dashed behind the bush to turn on the boom box to play "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" and walked back.
He was laughing now, looking at me with a gentle smile and offering me his hand. I took it and let him lead the dance, at times spinning me around, other times the both of us, and sometimes just swaying back and forth to the music with my head resting on his shoulders. When the song ended I pulled him down and brought my hand in a circle, ending in a fist and encircling us in a ring a fire.
Zane was smiling, but didn't quite know what to say, "So I think I have an idea of what you're up to, but did you want to destroy the place again?"
I smiled, "It's not destroyed. Only a few things are on fire, and I think they're the same ones. You could still sort of see the burn marks."
He laughed, "So they'll never grow back now."
I smiled, "Some flowers only bloom out of fire. Besides, I didn't think you were such an environmentalist."
He laughed, "I'm not. I guess I'm just surprised. This isn't quite what I thought you'd want to do today."
I laughed, "Zane, don't you know by now? I'm not like most girls?"
He smiled, voice gentle, "No, that you're not."
"Hazards of dating a rebellious teenage mermaid," I teased.
"Hazards indeed," he agreed, "but you know that doesn't really matter to me now."
I looked at him a moment, before saying, "I know," and leaned in to kiss him.
He started to meet me, but stopped me, suddenly suspicious. I looked at him, harshly curious and he asked, "You're not going to knock me out again are you?"
I felt myself blush as I laughed, "I guess you're going to have to trust me."
"You're cute when you blush," he said, which didn't help, but he leaned in again and didn't hesitate this time. I felt the heat of the fire around us as my lips met his, my hand in his hair, just the two of us here.
Zane looked at the ring of fire when we pulled back, "So, what made you decide here?"
I looked at him, blushing, "Well, I didn't have the best night that night," Zane laughed, "and since it was the first time we kissed, I figured I should change that, especially know that you know the truth."
He replied simply, "You always surprise me."
I smiled, "Good. You hungry?"
He looked confused again, and apologetic, "Well, I didn't quite know what you were up to and you told me to bring the chocolate and roses, so that's really all I brought."
I smiled, "Why do you look so worried? I know. After all, this was my idea."
I flattened my hand and pushed it down to the ground, putting out the circle of fire and walked back over to the bush, bringing out a basket as "Always" by Blink 182 started playing.
"Don't think I made this myself," I warned, "It should be good, though. I ordered it from the Marina Bell and got your favorite."
Probably wondering at the slight tease at the end, he opened the lid and laughed, "Sloppy Joes. Sounds good."
"Good," I said brightly, "Because the drinks I had planned…well I needed some help getting them here, and the nerd changed out alcohol for sparkling cider."
Zane laughed and I joined in.
"It's fine, Rikki," he said, taking a bite and then adding earnestly, "Really."
I took a bite and had to agree, "Definitely."
Afterwards, I ran over again, asking, "Cards?". "Bring Me to Life" had just ended and "How to Save a Life" came on.
Zane agreed, "Sure. War?"
I smiled, "You're on," and came to lie down, dealing out the cards and then eyeing the chocolate.
Zane noticed, "They're for you. You can open them or not whenever you want."
"I know," I said as I reached for them, but he beat me to it, opening the lid for me.
"No problem," then he commented, "it's starting to get a little chilly."
"What?" I teased, "You didn't bring a jacket?" I made a fist, sparking up a fire inside a natural small set of stones, "Too bad you're dating me."
He laughed, but glanced at the sky and frowned, "Clouds are coming in."
My eyes flicked from my cards to him, up to the sky, "What? It's probably nothing. It's not supposed to rain tonight."
Zane nodded, "Alright then," and when we laid down the next set of cards, "War."