This Strange New World Above (1/?)
AKA a b99 au of the Little Mermaid! I’ve been so excited about this concept because I love writing fantasy stuff like this! This story is going to take elements of the original fairy tale, the Disney version and I’m adding some of my own stuff in too - hope you like this first chapter. Also, if you were wondering, the title is from a song in the Broadway musical.
The ocean is blue. Sure, that might seem like an obvious statement, but this ocean is a deep sapphire set against golden sand. Jake feels the waves crashing around his legs. He swears somewhere, he sees a flash of a tail and hears a siren’s song.
Then the scene slowly fades and he’s in a hospital room.
It all comes flooding back, slowly and then all at once. The cold dark and damp alley. The gunshots. The hands on him as he was rushed to the ambulance. He wants to get up, to move, to do anything, but he’s stuck, trapped under thin bedsheets and under harsh lights.
Even when he finally can move, he still feels stuck as the Doctor tells him every gory detail of the damage done to his leg. All he can think is “this isn’t fair”. It’s not fair when he has to see all his friends go on with work while he’s forced to retire from the force. It’s not fair that they all get to roll on with their lives whilst he comes to a stop, stricken with grief over all that he’s lost. He sits in his apartment all day, not moving, not thinking. Until he decides that this awful new normal isn’t enough.
When he tells the rest of the squad that he’s moving away, they look devastated but they understand. Even Charles tells him that it’s the right decision whilst openly sobbing. So he moves to a beach house, in a tiny town called Westport Landing. His life is a lot quieter than his days as a cop, but it’s peaceful. He sails, he walks across the beach, he goes to nearby amusement parks, he levels up on his guitar skills. Pre-injury Jake would’ve been bored stiff, but after everything he’s lost, he’s happy to have a calm and peaceful life. Sometimes he still thinks he sees flashes of tails in vibrant colours, but then he brushes it off. He’s pretty lonely, but overall he’s happy.