Category Archives: mermaids

New Book Announcement

Happy New Year! I hope 2014 was a blast for everyone but that 2015 will prove to be better. I want to start 2015 with an exciting announcement – the third and final book of The Painted Maidens Trilogy titled ‘The Taking’ is nearing completion! We are working on the cover art now as the book is in the first stages of editing. I’m aiming for a release on or before Valentine’s Day.

For those of you who are anxiously awaiting the release, it will be here soon – I promise! In the meantime, I plan to tease you with excerpts from the book (see the first one below).

For those who haven’t had a chance to read the first or second books, now is your chance to catch up as the first book ‘The Rising’ is still listed as free across all e-platforms!

THE RISING-final cover

The Rising

Get it now, FREE at:

Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Smashwords | Kobo

Summary:

Seventeen-year-old Serena is the youngest member of a dying race. The increasing acidity of the ocean is destroying her home, slowly eating away at the once thriving underwater landscape. But since the night of Serena’s birth, it is an outside force that most threatens their dwindling population. Werewolves, who once served as protectors for mermaids in the Kingdom of the Undine, now seek to eliminate all who dwell in the ocean—and Serena is about to find herself right in the middle of the deadly conflict.

Given the title of Werewolf Liaison, Serena is determined to make things right for her people. When she ventures to The Dry, she meets Liam, the werewolf with hazel eyes, and her whole world gets turned upside down. As Serena discovers the real history between werewolves and mermaids, she is left wondering who her true enemies are.

The Betrayed MOCK UP 2

The Betrayed

Purchase it now:

Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Smashwords | Kobo

Summary:

Two separate worlds; the Undine of The Deep and the Wolves of The Dry. A history muddled in war but thick with family bonds blur the lines of right and wrong. The youngest members of each race unite, trying to steer their people away from the brink of disaster. Serena and Liam must work together to resolve the problems of their people before the pressure tears these twin siblings apart. But the betrayed are angry, and are out for revenge.

Over the next month, there will be several fun events as we ramp up to the release of ‘The Taking’, including more excerpts, a playlist (I cannot wait for this one), announcements for my next projects, giveaways, and the cover reveal!

For now I leave you with an excerpt (unedited) from ‘The Taking’. Enjoy!

‘The Taking, Book Three of the Painted Maidens Trilogy’ Excerpt: 

male and female mermaidThe waves grow rough as the wind picks up.

“Come on,” says Kai. “I have an idea.” He takes Serena by the hand and swims them both into rougher surf.

“Kai, what are you—” Serena is cut off by the next wave that crashes over both of their heads.

Tossed and turned, colliding into each other and pulled apart just as quickly, they flounder like guppies in the water. Serena straightens herself out, finding the surface and popping above just to be pushed below again by the next wave. Kai rolls by in front of her sticking out his tongue while his tail is tangled in kelp.

Serena laughs as she breaks it apart for him. As soon as he is free, he pulls her up. Picking up speed, the pair glide along the surface, angling in to join another wave. This time, they slide in front of it just as the crest folds forward, wrapping them in a secluded tunnel of brackish blue. Kai continues to jut forward, but turns on his back and dips below the surface. He pulls Serena on top of him so her chest rests on his stomach. She rides the wave just as she has seen the Ungainly surfers do, laying down on their boards.

Kai pushes her hands up and out, then releases them. Spreading her arms like wings, Serena’s fingertips skim the watery tunnel on each side. Here in the ocean’s breakers, between The Deep and The Dry, Serena is finally afforded a little privacy from both worlds and her title as queen.

A wide grin spreads across her face as she looks down at Kai in gratitude. She pulls him up just as the tunnel condenses, then collapses in on itself. They endure the chaotic aftermath, tickling each other as they roll into calmer surf.

Catching their breath as their heads bob above water, pure delight dancing across their faces with the last light of the sun, and Serena looks at Kai. “I want to pair with you,” she says. The words are out of her mouth as the thought enters her head. Her eyes go wide—she can’t believe she said that out loud. She looks at Kai, who looks just as stunned.

“Are you sure?” he asks, giving her a chance to retract her statement.

Serena bites her lip, her eyes falling to the frothy water surrounding them. The time between waves lengthens, as if the ocean herself awaits Serena’s answer. Finally, she looks up to Kai. “No more waiting, Kai. I’m ready, and I wish to pair with you—if you’ll have me.”

His eyes light up and he squeezes her face in between his hands, drawing her lips into his. A breath she doesn’t know he was holding escapes as his lips relax open. He tastes of salt. Another wave finally breaks, taking them both by surprise. He wraps his tail around hers as their arms snake around each other.

The wave pushes them under in a tumultuous celebration, and they hold on tight as the world spins around them. Hitting the sandy sea floor, they break apart. Serena’s hair has escaped her braid and black tendrils reach out, brushing Kai’s cheek.

Right here, right now, there are no worries in the world. There is nothing but Kai and all the fun, the security, and the affection he brings. Serena can’t pretend the moment will last forever, but she knows if Kai is by her side she can face anything.

* * *

Hope you enjoyed the excerpt! Let me know what you think in the comments below and please be sure to like me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter to keep updated on my progress!

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New Release: The Betrayed

Happy Release Day to my Painted Maidens!

The Betrayed MOCK UP 2I am so excited to reveal ‘The Betrayed, Book Two of the Painted Maidens Trilogy’! It has been a looooong time coming. I won’t bore you with a long post, but I will give you what you need – the links!

Amazon Smashwords | Goodreads | B&N | iTunesKobo

Please help spread the word!

Synopsis:

Two separate worlds; the Undine of The Deep and the Wolves of The Dry. A history muddled in war but thick with family bonds blur the lines of right and wrong. The youngest members of each race unite, trying to steer their people away from the brink of disaster. Serena and Liam must work together to resolve the problems of their people before the pressure tears these twin siblings apart. But the betrayed are angry, and are out for revenge.

 

Sex in Young Adult Books

THE RISING-final coverI am currently writing my third and final novel for ‘The Painted Maidens Trilogy’. The first book ‘The Rising’ is available now on Amazon, Smashwords, B&N, and iTunes. The second book ‘The Betrayed’ will be available this fall.

Without giving too much away, in the third book (tentatively named ‘The Taking’) the main character, Serena – who is 18 – makes the decision to share herself with her boyfriend. This is not within the confines of marriage because well, they are mermaids and they don’t get married.

I’ve done my fair share of research on sex in young adult books and am admittedly nervous to include it. I want to do it right. The best article I found so far is by ‘Writing Teen Novels‘. Advice in writing sex in young adult novels includes “how important it is to be honest, to be sober and to be in a committed respectful and loving relationship before you take the leap” and “girls should decide that they are in control of their bodies and of their decision-making”.

Another great article I found is by Amber Skye Forbes. Here the author says “Sexual experiences vary widely among teenagers, which is what is so great about YA literature. It encompasses experiences from a myriad of teenagers from all different walks of life” (like mermaids – LOL) and “sex between two teenagers doesn’t always have negative consequences”.

These are exactly the points that I want to portray in my book. My work up to the scene does include a lot of soul-searching for the main character as mermaid 2to why she is choosing to do this.

My next conundrum is how graphic should I get? I have to keep it PG-13 but I don’t want to completely gloss over the event.

One big benefit I have to this is my oldest son just turned 15 – and he reads this series. I can keep myself in check knowing he will be reading the book, but I can also include everything I want him to know about it wrapped into an entertaining fantasy story.

I would love to hear your advice on the subject – especially coming from avid readers, other YA authors, parents, and even teens. What lessons should I preach (without sounding too preachy, of course)? How graphic can I get? What were some of your favorite YA books that touched this subject?

World-Building with Werewolves

werewolf skullFollowing my World Building with Mermaids Blog Post about nine months ago, I thought I’d give the wolves their fair share of the spotlight.  I’m currently writing the second book in ‘The Painted Maidens Trilogy’. In this book, tentatively titled ‘The Betrayed’, we rise up from The Deep and explore the world of The Dry a little more. I have to admit, I’ve not done a lot of research on werewolves, possibly because I don’t want my ‘wolf world’ to turn out too cliché.  So here is what I’ve come up with so far, comparing commonly accepted facts about werewolves to the wolf clan in ‘The Betrayed’:

  1. A person becomes a werewolf by being bitten or scratched by another werewolf. Not true in ‘The Betrayed’.  I definitely don’t want to give anything away for those that haven’t read ‘The Rising’, but werewolves come from somewhere else entirely.
  2. Silver will kill or slow down a werewolf. Haven’t touched on the subject in ‘The Betrayed’, and I’m not sure if I will. They are, however, extremely afraid of wolfsbane, a small, yellow and poisonous flower.
  3. Werewolves communicate through a form of telepathy. Absolutely not true in ‘The Betrayed’.  I didn’t play that card with mermaids and I certainly won’t do it with the wolves!  Good old fashioned growls, scents, and body gestures will have to work.
  4. Werewolves in the same pack or clan have a link that binds them together. True in ‘The Betrayed’. This is why Liam, the good Werewolf, can’t part from the pack no matter how hard he tries.
  5. Werewolves are afraid of the water. True in ‘The Betrayed’. However, they feel bonded to it, unable to go far from the shores just as they can’t part from the pack.
  6. Werewolves only transform with the full moon. Nope! But their transformation in ‘The Betrayed’ is not always under their control, and it does occur as a response to the energy around them (again – don’t want to give too much away).

So what are some of your favorite werewolf myths or facts? What are some of your favorite werewolf books?  Comment below and help an author with her research!

‘The Rising’ Now Available

Finally available across all channels for purchase! ‘The Rising, Book One of the Painted Maidens Trilogy’ has been described as a wonderfully unique story. I guarantee this young adult series sets apart from any mermaid story you’ve read, or what you might come to expect.

The ebook is $4.99 on Amazon, Smashwords, B&N, and iTunes. For the rest of November, I’m willing to send out a free copy of ‘The Rising’ for anyone who agrees to post a review on either Amazon or Goodreads, or both. Send me an email at terra.harmony11@gmail.com or comment below. And don’t forget to add it to your Goodreads TBR List. I encourage you to take the plunge – you might just love what you discover down in the deep!

THE RISING-final cover“It was a great ride. I devoured every page and loved the whole thing through.” by Ariel Avalon, Book Blogger

“This is a wonderfully unique story.” and “I recommend this if you enjoy mermaids or werewolves with some great action, mystery and a bit of romance.” by Darker Passions Book Blog

The book is fast paced filled with action that keeps you on the edge of your seat till the very end, add in a little romance and mystery for the perfect balance. The author has written a beautiful story that sparks the imagination. I loved everything about the story and can’t wait for the next one to see what happens to both Serena and Liam as their stories unfold.” by The Reading Diaries Book Blog 

Amazon Smashwords  |  B&N  |  iTunes  |  Goodreads

Official Cover Reveal

I’ve kept this jewel under wraps long enough. You have no idea how much I wanted to just put it out there. Without further ado – the official cover to ‘The Rising, Book One of the Painted Maidens Trilogy’:

THE RISING-final cover

Fifteen-year-old Serena is the youngest member of a dying race. The increasing acidity of the ocean is destroying her home, slowly eating away at the once thriving underwater landscape. But since the night of Serena’s birth, it is an outside force that most threatens their dwindling population. Werewolves, who once served as protectors for mermaids in the Kingdom of the Undine, now seek to eliminate all who dwell in the ocean—and Serena is about to find herself right in the middle of the deadly conflict.

Given the title of Werewolf Liaison, Serena is determined to make things right for her people. When she ventures to The Dry, she meets Liam, the werewolf with hazel eyes, and her whole world gets turned upside down.  As Serena discovers the real history between werewolves and mermaids, she is left wondering who her true enemies are.

Add ‘The Rising’ to your Goodreads TBR list now.

 

My Cover’s Story

Beyond a good story, nothing is more important than the book’s cover (other than maybe the blurb, but that is a post for another time).  Creating the book cover is an exciting, gut-wrenching process for an author.  It is trying to convey the greatness of your masterpiece into one simple but striking visual image. And we usually don’t get it right the first time around. Case in point; the before and after pictures of my first novel, ‘Water, Book One of the Akasha Series’:

BEFORE

BEFORE

AFTER

AFTER

The difference: the first cover is a product of my imagination. The second cover is a product of the artist’s imagination.

In creating the first cover, I just kept thinking of more stuff the cover should have and telling the artist to revise, revise, revise.  She did everything I asked her to do; her mistake.  After seeing the final product I sat back, looked at it, and thought, “What in the hell was I thinking?”  I paid the artist then hired another.  My decision was validated by a friend’s opinion, “It looks like a vagina.”

The second cover is a product of the artist’s imagination.  I gave her all the same instructions I gave the first artist, and she plain out said, “no.”

I tried again, giving her the simple instruction of, “Water.  Fantasy.  Go.”  And….voila.  A vagina-free masterpiece.  She came up with an attractive cover that pops against the black background.  The design was easily mimicked for all books in the series; Air, Fire and Earth, and even the boxed set. Branding at its best.

Air Cover ImageFire V2earth cover hand biggerAkasha Cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She even did my vampire anthology cover:

 The Kindred Curse Cover

Love it!

Now that I am ready to publish a brand new series, I thought I knew enough about the business to take a crack at creating my own cover.  For ‘The Rising’, a mermaid, young adult fantasy trilogy, I came up with several versions:

The RisingThe Rising with tailThe Rising tail only

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I sent it around.  My husband and mom loved it. No shocker there – they are biased.  But a few problems were quickly pointed out by the lovely ladies of Patchwork Press (my new partners in crime).  In the first version, there isn’t a real ‘mermaid’ element, all of them look too similar to my New Adult series (branding across genres isn’t always the best idea), and they are not very typical of young adult covers – which may or may not be a good thing.

I searched the internet for images, and came across this one on Deviant Art (you’ve seen it in my previous blog posts):

mermaid faceSadly, it has already been claimed as a book cover.

Grr! (If you are interested, click on the book cover image to purchase and read and let me know what you think!)

zerrin

Finally, I went back to the same amazing cover artist that did the Akasha Series covers, Keary Taylor. Turns out, she basically lives where the story takes place, and she was super excited to do a mermaid cover.  I turned her loose on my mermaid pinterest page for inspiration, and I am so excited to do the final cover reveal.  It turned out great!  Here is a sneak peak:

terra-cover-reveal-682x1024

Boo!  I know – you don’t get to see the whole thing yet! Stay tuned for a reveal in mid-September. Book Review Bloggers can sign up here to do a cover reveal on their own blog, plus sign up for the book tour and an ARC.  And be sure to add it to your Goodreads TBR list!

The Rising

mermaid face

Digital art by Renu Sharma

There will be some very exciting posts to come out in the next few weeks; all centered around my next series.  I’ll have a cover reveal soon, and maybe even a book trailer.  For now, I’ll have to tease you with the title and blurb:

The Rising
Book One of the Painted Maidens Trilogy

             Sixteen-year-old Serena is the youngest member of a dying race. Increasing acidity in the ocean is destroying their environment, but there are other threats to her species. During the full moon, when the mermaids of the Undine Kingdom surface onto The Dry to breed, werewolves chase them off. The key to the survival of the Undine race lies with Serena, who has just been given the title of Werewolf Liaison. Serena believes it may be a punishment for her secret excursions to The Dry, but then the king himself brings her to trial for meddling, and  for risking the exposure of her entire species. The penalty, should she be found guilty, is death. If the changing environment or the pack of werewolves doesn’t kill her, her own king certainly will.

Sound enticing?  Add it to your Goodreads TBR pile now!

It seems not too long ago I was just beginning the writing process on this book (May 8 to be exact – I went through my old posts), and now the novel is becoming a reality.  The book is with my editor now.  Then it goes out to beta readers.  Barring any major setbacks, the tentative release date is September 19th, 2013.  If you missed previous posts, click here for the first chapter and here for world-building with mermaids.

Stay tuned for the cover reveal – you aren’t going to want to miss this one!

World-Building with Mermaids

Yesterday, I hit the 30,000 word mark with my first mermaid book. WOO-HOO!!! The average length of my books is 80,000, though I shoot for 90,000 words to allow for cuts during the editing process.  This means I am about 1/3 of the way there.  WOO-HOO!!!

My goal is to finish writing by the end of July. Then it goes out to my editors and beta-readers (speaking of, my list of beta-readers is growing, but if you are interested, see my post here). Final release date (crossing fingers until they turn white) is September 2013.

So, at the 30,000 mark, I’m done setting up most of my undersea world, introduced in bits and pieces throughout so it doesn’t come off as one big info-dump. I have to admit, this is the slowest I’ve ever written a book because I have to stop every few sentences to research something. Seriously – by the time I’m done with the series, I might just have to apply my research toward a Marine Biologist degree! I’ve even emailed a professor at Stanford specializing in ocean acidification with questions Google can’t answer, and I get a quick response! Note to self: include him in my acknowledgments.

World building is a difficult thing, and so you may ask, what does my mermaid world like? Below are some answers (just some – can’t give away all my hard work, yet), followed by a short excerpt.  Let me know what you think!

mermaid 2

Want to see some more awesome mermaid pics? Check out my Pinterest page: http://pinterest.com/terraharmony/mermaids/ and be sure to follow it!

What do mermaids call themselves, their kingdom, humans, the earth above, etc.? In my story, they call themselves ‘undine’ which means ‘water fairy’. Humans are ‘ungainly’ (meaning clumsy or awkward), and the human world above seas is called ‘The Dry’ (this one seems a little cheesy, so I may change it – feel free to offer ideas). The undine community is ‘Society’.

How is the ruling party structured? There is a king advised by his second-in-command and his council. The council is selected by the king himself and consists of the most powerful members of Society (head of the guard, head caste or ‘school’ master, etc.). All male undine join the king’s guard, simply because there are so few males left. There are about a dozen of them compared to maybe 300 females.

What is their schooling like? All undine attend school until they are 16 years of age. Each year is a different ‘caste’ (thus, caste master (school teacher), caste mates, etc.) At graduation, they enter The Choosing. They select three potential jobs they would like to spend the rest of their life doing, then during a ceremony are told what they are given. Most (and that is the key word – MOST) are given one of their three choices.

What do they eat? I just got done writing this part, and learned some very interesting facts myself! I found a very interesting article to help. Basically, the sea is an especially potent source of minerals. Whereas terrestrial vegetables are limited to what they can obtain from the soil, sea vegetables spend their entire lives luxuriating in the world’s largest, oldest, most complete mineral bath. They soak it up and are among the richest sources of iodine, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, potassium, manganese, and all other (56 of ‘em in total) minerals essential to the human body.

Basically, undine eat the dozens upon dozens of edible seaweed, plus fish and crustaceans. Our main character is a vegetarian, though. 😉


Where do they live?
The setting is in the waters of British Columbia, the northern pacific ocean. Browning Pass, to be specific, between the mainland and Vancouver Island. The undine live in underwater caverns, some which become flooded during high tide, and empty during low tide. For the most part, undine are protected from curious humans by dangerously quick currents running through the pass.

How do they have sex and give birth? Like fish or mammals? (I promise, this is a YA book – but this question is always on the tip of my tongue when I think about mermaids.) The undine in my series transform into their human forms to mate and give birth. Although they can transform at will (and it is painful for them), they only consummate and give birth during the full moon.

Where do the werewolves come in? Here is the exciting part! A while back, werewolves were actually created by undine to protect them on land while they mate and give birth – which is why werewolves only change during the full moon.

What is the conflict? Werewolves viewed their status almost as ‘slaves’ to the undine, so they revolted. It was a one-night blood bath, during the full moon, when several undine were giving birth, including the queen herself. The queen, the newborn prince, and several others were killed. In fact, the only one to come out alive was our main character, Serena. She grew up as an orphan, and because of the werewolf uprising, is one of the last undine to be born. The species as a whole is on the decline because of 1) ocean acidification and 2) they are unable to procreate.

 

So there is the start of my world! It isn’t everything, and though I may reveal more later, you’ll just have to read the book to get all of it. Below is a short excerpt, you can read the first chapter here (after the call for beta readers).

 

When Serena reaches the surface, bobbing between Vancouver Island and the mainland, the sun is already sinking into the ocean. Already, she can spot the outline of the moon behind her. It is waning, and though it may look the part of a full moon there will be no werewolves tonight.

Normally, she can swim in the shadows cast by seagulls skimming the waves for their dinner, moving in closer to shore undetected. This evening the skies are as deserted as is the thin strip of beach. A light rain begins to fall and thunder cracks in the distance.

Serena disappears below the water, resurfacing down the stream. Her eyes scan the shoreline for signs of life; ungainly or otherwise. Werewolves aren’t the only animal to inhabit these forests. Grizzly bears, coyotes, and the most concentrated population of cougars in North America all patrol the borders where Serena’s world ends.

She appears further up the coast. The rain is falling harder now, and lightning flashes in the distance as though the sky goddess herself is giving her the all clear.

One powerful push and Serena is caught up in the breakers. She swims just below the whitecaps, a mirror image of a surfer gliding on a wave. One of her fins slice up, catching a taste of briny air.

All too soon, the earth below angles up to meet the sky above, and the ocean disappears in a squeeze between them. Serena’s smile grows wider, as it always does when she flirts with the edge of the world.

She somersaults with the dying wave, fins brushing sand, air, sand, air. On the next flip, a cold wind scrapes against the bottom of her feet, freshly formed, still raw from scales retracting in. Tucking her legs for one more roll, she straightens them to stand. She sinks into wet sand as the remnants of a once powerful wave lick at her ankles; a desperate attempt to call her back into its clutches.

Serena moves forward, toward the moon. It is another force, almost as powerful as the ocean, calling to the undine maiden.

Beta Readers Apply Here

Just kidding, there is no application.  But I do need beta readers! I’m almost 1/3 of the way into the first book of my next series, and I’m looking for volunteers to read an advanced copy (e-book only). I’d love to have a group of readers to provide comments on grammar, spelling, format and accuracy of text, and another group to provide comments on actual content, dialogue, plot, etc.  My plan is to have it ready for you in August or September; but there will be a working deadline of about 3 weeks.  If you are interested, please send me an e-mail at terra.harmony11@gmail.com, and I’ll put you on the list.  When the manuscript is ready, I’ll send out e-mails double checking your availability.  Unfortunately, there won’t be any monetary compensation, but I’ll of course send you a final e-book in the format of your choice, and if you run a blog I can sponsor an e-book giveaway.

The series is a young adult eco-fantasy.  Here is the first chapter, just to give you a taste (posted before, but have since made a few changes):

Chapter 1

mermaidSerena turns the corner of the thin, rocky path. Her shoes slide along the pebbles, almost sending her head first into the trees. “Damn things!”

She looks behind her. There is time; the beast isn’t yet in her sight. She slows down enough to slip off the shoes. The beast takes the corner too fast as well. When Serena hears the skidding, she turns and throws one of her shoes. A miss. The beast scrambles to get his legs under him and lunges for her. She throws the other shoe, nailing him in the nose. Serena laughs out loud, then resumes her steady running pace.

“I thought werewolves were faster than this!” she yells over her shoulder.

She doesn’t know if he can understand speech in his animal form, but he is angry. His growls tell her so. Her legs brush past the sharp, thick shrubbery outlining the path. Shallow cuts crisscross over her otherwise smooth, white skin.

Next to come off is her shirt. She throws it behind her, only stopping to watch the beast tear madly at his own face, where the shirt lands. unclasps the button on her skirt, but has to throw it backwards over her head as she runs. The beast is on the move again. He dodges the clothing, finally learning what to expect.

Serena breaks through the tree line at her fastest pace yet, feet sinking into soft sand and slowing her down. The wolf is close; she can smell his foul breath. The thing snaps at her, almost reaching the tresses of her black, curly hair. Werewolf spit flings forward onto her shoulder. “Gross!”

The beast is faster on the sand. Serena does not expect that. The greedy thing doesn’t even wait until he has a sure kill. He swipes at her when the long reach of his paw is close enough. The gash causes Serena to falter, and she stumbles in the sand. Trying to avoid the yellow razor-like gnashing teeth, Serena rolls. The beast rolls with her, unwilling to let go of his prey. In the split second he is on top, Serena pushes up and out with her powerful legs. The werewolf yelps as he spins, head over tail, into the water.

Rough waves topple over the beast as he struggles to get on his feet. The ocean pushes and pulls, becoming stronger and stronger, as if it is working against the werewolf. Serena laughs again, delighted to see the mighty creature out of his element, and into hers. He drags himself out of the water, weighed down by his thick, matted fur and gasping for breath. Serena passes him, keeping a wary eye out. Welcoming waves reach out to her, drawing her into their frothy grip.

Once he is ankle deep, the werewolf shakes his fur, ridding himself of the salty sea water. He looks out into the ocean, and spots his prey bobbing up and down with the waves, well beyond his reach. He turns his head toward the full moon and howls.

It is an ear-piercing noise that makes Serena cringe. She flicks her freshly formed fins, spraying water onto the hound. His howl ends with a sharp yelp.

Serena turns, flinging her body up then down again, diving into the cold, dark water.

* * *

Thanks for reading and let me know what you think!

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