From a Correspondence Between Someone Whose Name it is Better not to Mention and Myself

Three-coins-in-the-fountain

(Credit: Three Coins in the Fountain, Jean Negulesco, 1954)

My dearest [Erased],

How have you been since our last meeting?

I have had a bit of a cold, but I assure you that I regret nothing. In fact, it would bring me great pleasure to see you under similar circumstances in the future.

I heard they fished a jacket out of the fountain. It is probably yours, but I think it would be best if you do not claim it. The buttons are ruined anyway. I recommend that you find one with larger buttonholes, to make it easier to disrobe in the future.

Speaking of the future, will you meet me on the little stone bridge on Wednesday evening at eleven o’clock?

I will bring your cane.

– Your Mermaid

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26 Tears

The tears shine in her eyes, form as they leave the corners and when they strike the pile below her with a small click, they are pearls. They lie in waves around her, and she sits at her fountain which she cannot leave and adds to their number.

A man who has been hiding in the bushes watching her crawls out from his cover. He straightens himself and takes a step into the pearls assuming he will be the one to save the maiden from her misery. Some pearls roll away some crunch under his foot, and the girl looks at him, a flicker of hope in her heart.

He freezes, crumbles, scatters into a thousand shiny white pearls and becomes part of the sea around her.

And the pearls continue to fall.

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