A/N: Heyy guys so here's the next chapter! This kind of explains somewhat of how Ciera came into Narissa's clutches, but more will be explained later on when Melody learns the truth. This was rather hard to write because I had to conjure up a story line instead of just throwing stuff out. Well I hope you guys like it anyway!
Days passed and there had still been no sign of Eric, or the witches. After Melody had explained what happened on the boat, Ariel had ordered search parties, both on land and sea, for her lost husband. The kingdom had been hectic ever since.
Melody had felt somewhat responsible for her father's disappearance. She knew deep down that she should have stayed with him instead of trying to run away like a scared little girl. Melody you're such an idiot. She said to herself while sitting outside on her balcony.
But, in all honesty, Melody was scared. She had been scared to death and still was at that very moment. Her mother hadn't yet confronted her about the story of Ciera, which frightened her even more. Melody wanted to be furious with her parents for keeping this from her, but knowing what could happen to her father overpowered her anger.
Melody also knew how distraught and worried her mother was. She saw the hurt and terror in Ariel's eyes when she explained the heartbreaking scene. Once the search parties began, Ariel had been out of sight. She was either out at sea with her father, or on land with a parade of the kingdom's best soldiers.
But when Ariel did come home, Melody would walk past her room to check on her mother, only to hear distant sobs on the other side of the closed door. It broke Melody's heart at the current condition of her mother.
Staring out at the open water, Melody began to feel a certain courage and strength that she hadn't felt in quite awhile. She needed to go after them. She owed it not only to her parents, but to herself as well. No matter what it took, she was going to find Ciera.
Melody rose from her chair and walked to her bedroom door. She opened it slowly and peeked her head out before tiptoeing quietly out of the room. When she approached her parents' room, she walked in as slow as she possibly could until she reached a sleeping Ariel.
Melody held in tears when she saw the destroyed face of her mother. Even in sleep Melody could tell that her father's absence was taking its toll on her mom. "I love you mom," She whispered before walking out of the room.
"Momma! Can I please go swimming with Daddy and Max?" A six-year-old Ciera begged her mother, looking up at the Queen with pleading blue eyes.
Ariel sighed while she struggled to slip a purple gown over her wiggling daughter's head, a task she had been trying to accomplish for several minutes. "Ciera hold still. We don't have time for swimming right now. We need to get you ready for the dinner party,"
Ciera grabbed the dress and stopped her mother from pulling it the rest of the way. "I don't want to go to a stupid dinner!" She pouted. "Can't we all just go swimming for a little bit? Please! I want to see Flounder," She pondered. "Maybe Grandpa and Sebastian too!" She continued, the idea getting more and more exciting.
Ariel pursed her lips and gazed out the window to the open sea. The mention of her best friend and her father tugged at her heart. It had been months since she had seen any of her friends or her family. She looked down at the small girl who had placed her delicate hand on Ariel's cheek. "Please momma?" She whispered, her eyes shining with hope.
Ariel couldn't help but smile. She ran her fingers through Ciera's long red curls that were identical to her own. "Alright sweetie, we'll go for a quick swim," She chuckled at Ciera's excited squeals and pulled the dress off of her shoulders then put it away. "Now go put something on and I'll find your father," She stood up, watched her daughter skip happily into her closet, and then left the room.
Half an hour later, Ariel and Eric walked hand in hand as they watched Ciera and Max run through the waves along the shore line. Happiness filled their hearts at the site of their gorgeous daughter playing in the sand.
Ariel leaned against Eric and lovingly squeezed his hand. No words could describe the amount of joy she was feeling. Her life couldn't have turned out more perfectly. She lived in a beautiful home with the man of her dreams and now they had a wonderful daughter as a result of their love.
Ariel felt her feet suddenly stop and tugged on Eric's arm to bring him back to her. He looked at her, confusion drawn on his face. "What is it? Something wrong?" He asked quickly.
Ariel shrugged and gave him a glowing smile. "I love you," She said, threading her arms around his neck.
Eric chuckled lightly and wrapped his arms around her waist. "And I love you," He leaned his forehead against hers before they both moved in for a kiss.
"Eww! Mommy and Daddy are kissing!" Ciera's giggling voice finally broke the couple apart. Ariel and Eric laughed at their daughter's completely grossed out face.
"And now I think it's Ciera's turn for a kiss!" Eric said slyly and released Ariel to chase after the little girl. Ciera squealed with laughter and bolted away from him. He followed her into the shallows and scooped her up in his arms, ignoring her giggling protests.
"No daddy no!" Ciera laughed as he smothered her tiny face with kisses. Max pranced around their feet, barking happily. Eric finally set his daughter down, only to have her grab his hand and pull him down into the water.
They fell together laughing and began to splash one another. Ariel watched with a warm smile on her face. Her gaze then shifted to the open water, a silent sigh leaving her lips. Oh how she missed being in the sea. "I miss you daddy," She whispered, a small tear sliding down her cheek.
"Momma! Come play with us!" Ariel turned her head when she heard Ciera call out to her. Ariel was about to slip her shoes off when a giant wave suddenly came crashing down on Eric, Ciera, and Max. Ariel watched in horror as her family disappeared from her sight.
"Eric!" She called and broke into a run towards the churning water. She was stopped when the sky suddenly turned black and an evil cackle echoed in the distance, followed by booming thunder. A shiver split down Ariel's spine; that laugh sounded way too familiar.
Searching frantically for any sign of her husband and child, she saw Max pop out of the rolling waves. "Max! Come here boy," She called frantically to the panicking dog. She rushed over to him and wrapped her arms around his soaking fur. "Where are they boy?" She asked him desperately.
Just as the words left her mouth, a swirling pool of water formed in front of them. Max and Ariel backed away until they were in the sand as a huge looming figure burst out of the sea. Ariel's eyes widened in horror at the terrifying sight. Holding in its black tentacles was a crying Ciera who was soaked to the bone. "Ciera!" She screamed.
Shock was followed by recognition as Ariel examined the creature. It couldn't be. "Ursula!" She growled.
The sea witch threw her head back with a laugh. "Guess again sweetheart," She looked at the young woman with glaring yellow eyes. "Ursula is only my pin head sister," She lowered herself until she was at eye level with Ariel. "I am Narissa," She said proudly.
Ariel looked at her daughter who was looking back at her with fear. "Let her go," She demanded, her eyes turning back to Narissa. Max stood at her side, growling.
The sea-witch just smiled at her. She brought the tentacle holding the child to her chest and planted a wet kiss on her cheek. "Oh don't cry sweetheart, everything will be alright," She cooed, stroking Ciera's tangled hair. Ciera closed her eyes, trembling in her bounds as her face paled.
Tears rimmed Ariel's eyes. "Please, let her go," She begged.
Narissa laughed again. "You mer-folk are so emotional," She said, rolling her eyes. "No wonder dear Ursula turned you all into weeds," She sneered.
Ariel felt anger rise in her chest. "What do you want?" She asked, eyeing the sea-witch with suspicion.
Narissa pulled herself onto a nearby rock, cradling Ciera back and forth with her tentacles. Ciera continued to cry silently, her arms outstretched to her mother. "What do I want?" She asked absentmindedly. "Well dear, there are a lot of things that I want. But I guess you are wondering what my purpose is here,"
Ariel didn't say a word. She kept her eyes locked on her daughter. She pleaded silently that Eric was alright.
"Well I was swimming about, traveling the seas when I heard that my sister Ursula had conjured up a new idea to ruin King Triton," Narissa continued. "By the time I returned to this neck of the woods, Ursula was gone and some smelly little mermaid had turned human," She said, glaring at Ariel.
The queen held her head high, returning the glare. "What does it matter to you?" She questioned.
Narissa smirked at her. "Oh my dear," She said sweetly, and then her voice turned into a snarl. "It means everything to me!" Before Ariel could respond, she moved away from the rock and back into the water. "See the difference between Ursula and I is that while she wanted to control the mer-people, I want them to see themselves as they truly are,"
Ariel's eyebrows furrowed in confusion. "What are you talking about?"
Narissa chuckled. "Ariel, come now. You couldn't possibly think that you were just meant to be a pretty face," She said as if it were simple logic. When Ariel didn't respond, Narissa threw her arms in the air. "You're a mermaid for crying out loud! You have powers," She hissed.
"Powers?" Ariel said.
Narissa shook her head. "Oh Ariel. Did you really think that you have that gorgeous voice just to impress the boys" She moved closer to the woman. "You're a siren,"
Taken aback, Ariel's eyes widened. "I'm a what?" She stammered.
"A siren dear. A beautiful creature of the sea, meant to lure sailors to their death with their enchanting voices," Narissa replied. "Which is more or the less the reason that stupid prince fell in love with you. However, your idiot Triton has brainwashed everyone in Atlantic into straying away from their powers,"
Ariel stared at her in shock. "You're insane," She said, shaking her head, refusing to believe what she just heard.
Narissa chuckled. "Slightly crazed, but never insane," She said with amusement. "Well back to important matters. While bringing you back to the sea is hopeless, I figured that retrieving a much more younger soul would be bettering suiting for me," She pulled a trembling Ceira closer to her as she spoke.
Ariel gasped. "No!" She said instantly, making a grab for her daughter.
Narissa shook her head and pulled Ciera back. "This child here has such a darling voice, just like her mother, and still has so much to learn about the undersea world. I thought that I would take it upon myself to teach her," She said with a laugh.
"No!" Ariel cried again and plunged into the water. "Please!" She trudged through the waves as fast as she could, only to have Narissa moving farther and farther away from her. She stopped when the water reached her waist.
Narissa looked at her with pity before turning to Ciera. "Say goodbye to your mummy sweetheart," She sneered.
"Momma!" Ciera screamed at the top of her lungs, squirming in the sea-witch's grasp.
Tears streaming down her face, Ariel struggled to move, but the waves smashed against her body, pushing her back to shore. "Ciera!" She cried out to her daughter. She could hear Max's bark behind her as he ran around the beach helplessly.
Narissa's laughs drowned out the girls' cries. Water started to swirl around her, sucking them into the sea. "Oh, before I forget. I can't leave you alone dear. Here's your useless prince," With a snap of her fingers, Eric's body floated to the surface.
"Eric!" Ariel shrieked and bolted towards him. She pulled him into a tight grip and hulled him to the shore. When his body hit the sand, Ariel barreled back into the ocean. "No!" She screamed just as Narissa disappeared with her daughter into the watery depths.
"Ciera!" Ariel yelped, waking up from her nightmare. Heavy breaths escaped her lips as she took in her surroundings. She was alone in her giant bedroom. Dry tears stained her face and a cold sweat beat across her forehead. Hard shivers filtered through her body and she rubbed her arms frantically to erase the goose bumps.
Fresh tears threatened to expose themselves from her eyes. "Eric," She whispered. Ariel missed him so much that it hurt. When Ciera had first been taken from them, Ariel had constant nightmares for months and Eric had always been there to comfort her. He'd take her in his arms, whispering soothing words, and would hold her until she fell back asleep. Even when Morgana had threatened Melody's life, Eric had been there to reassure her that their daughter was safe. But now that he was gone, her heart ached painfully for him.
Melody. Ariel had hardly seen her daughter in the last few days, due to her frantic searches for her husband. She felt awful for the terrible secret that she had kept from her daughter, but Ariel saw how worried Melody was about her father and knew it didn't concern her; for now.
Even though it was at a very late hour, Ariel needed the company of her daughter. If there was another soul besides Eric that could keep Ariel at ease, it was Melody. Throwing her blankets aside, Ariel rose from the bed and padded out of the room, her bare feet shivering with each step against the cold floor.
When she reached Melody's room, she hesitated before walking inside. She walked with a tired slowness until she approached the large bed. She stared at the bundle of blankets before gently rubbing what she thought was Melody's back. Confusion flooded her brain when the mob was too soft to be the body of her daughter. She pulled the blankets away to see a pile of pillows instead of a sleeping girl. "Melody!" Ariel cried in agony before burying her face in her hands and breaking out into painful sobs.
So what did you guys think of it? Poor Ariel! I really made her suffer in this one:/ I feel like this was one of my better ones. While it was difficult to write, I still enjoyed it nevertheless and I hope you did too let me know how you guys like it! I love hearing from you all!