I’ve some entries for Arlo’s Journal from “Mermaid Rising” that set up “The Mermaid’s Apprentice.” Here’s the 5th entry following those from Section 2 of “Mermaid Rising.”
July 17th – The Lazy Cloud
I’ve been driven down to The Lazy Cloud and given a clean bill of health, the university gets the real bill. I finally get to open up the yacht and see for myself what the girl did to my things, and what she poked her nose into. It is with surprise that I see that everything is as I remember it, except for a few items – she’d picked up the medical kit I’d left sprawled about.
The yacht needs some fuel, so I purchase some from the Syreni folks who are more than willing to help. Surprisingly the folks had plugged in the yacht, so my refrigerated goods were still intact. I could have gone without paying for it, since I never requested it, but friendly ports were already hard to come by. No sense aggravating the locals for no reason.
The smell of the sea is wonderful, I find it difficult to not set sail immediately. I wasn’t in any real hurry anyway, I haven’t heard back from Jeb, though I’m pretty sure he’ll come. He’s never not come at my request, and Melanie was out of school for the summer. I put in an order for supplies with the locals willing to stock me up with their produce. Then I put out to get the water all around me and to test the yacht. Everything is in good working order, just as I’d left it. There may be a new scratch of the anchor chain on the front deck, but considering the condition of the yacht, it is hard to tell and no reason to get upset about.
The girl probably didn’t know how to store an anchor and the port authority probably did that for her. I drop anchor out around the point, pull out a fishing pole and relax on the sea. How strange it feels to just sit there. I never sit idle, but this feels pretty good and I grab for a fresh mango and suck on its peppery juice and throw the pit overboard when I finished. The fish would love the fruit I left on it.