date a selkie, but don’t hide her cloak. let her go home and visit her family now and then, knowing that she’ll come back and hang her seal cloak in the closet like she always does. trust is important.

The first time she lets the redhead take her home, she’s diligent about hiding her cloak. She folds it carefully against tears and rips and abrasions, and hides it in a sea cave whose entrance is concealed by the tide.

She does the same, the second and third and fourth times, careful, wary, mindful of her mother’s lessons. Remembers the way her mother’s hands had chafed on her soft cheeks, rough with cooking and cleaning for her fisherman husband, the way her mother’s peat-dark eyes had been tense and harsh with the lesson.

“Mind me, Niahm. Never let them find your cloak.”

The way her mother’s mouth had curved, a sickle of dissatisfaction and relief and envy, as she had escaped into the waves.

So she minds her mother’s lesson, and she takes care with her cloak.

Would that she had taken as much care with her heart.

The fifth time, she wears the cloak to the girl’s door, clutched about her throat, dripping along the darkened lanes.

She enters the home, welcomed with soft kisses and gentle touches and kindling passion. She drapes the cloak, artful in her carelessness, across an old wooden chair, the one that creaks and tilts slightly if you don’t sit just right.

When she wakes, in the wee hours of the morning, even before her lover, the cloak still rests, supple and dappled by the sea, on the back of the chair.

She frowns into the softening dawn, dons the cloak, and returns to the sea.

And again, the sixth time. And the seventh.

The eighth time, she finally breaks, prickling and hurt with longing, gripping a handful of russet hair in her hand, firm with emphasis.

“Surely you know what I am,” she says to her lover, the cool froth of sea foam and the call of gulls curling around her voice.

“Of course,” her lover responds, soft and tender in the dawnlight, throat arched willingly, pale as the inner whorls of a shell. “You taste of the sea,” the girl whispers, reverently.

She shakes her lover’s head gently, fingers tangled still in russet locks. “Why?” she demands. “Why won’t you keep me?”

A long silence that waits and fills, like a tidepool, stretches between them. Cool as a current. Deep as the Channel.

Her lover’s eyes are dark and tender. “Must I trap you to keep you, my heart? Is that the shape of love that you desire?”

She sinks into the thought, struck and stymied, remembering her mother’s harsh hands, her cold eyes. Her hand eases into russet waves, caresses where her grip had punished. Her lips press cool and damp as the sea against the arching curve of her lover’s shoulder. “What shape of love will you give to me?”

The answer is easy, quick, certain. “Myself. Only myself, whenever you should wish it. Your cloak by the door, your body in my bed, and the freedom to go, whenever you must. As long as you wish.”

It’s not an answer a fisherman could ever give, nor would think to.

The ninth time, she hangs her cloak by the door, draped in careful dappled folds next to a drying oilskin jacket.

i say this every time it crosses my dash but i’m so freaking happy someone liked my submission and Wrote Stuff and it’s so good!!! i love these girls so so so so much

This post is like the only Worthy Thing i have ever done on this website and you made that possible, you rock <3