Jane Hulstrunk and Irene Plax

Jane Hulstrunk


Response Piece

Irene Plax


Inspiration Piece

Water rippled outward and the mermaid’s face came to the surface first. Next her arms, long and graceful and pale green. She pushed herself onto a rock, reclined, admired the sun twinkling on her scales.

Her land-hearing was poor. She felt the vibrations when it was already too late, and turned just as the human man appeared. He snatched a handful of her hair and yanked it. Mostly it was too slick for him, but the mermaid felt a few follicles twist out. She whapped at him with her caudal fin. He staggered back, but before she could dip into the water he lunged forward and scraped at her breast with his dry, calloused hand.

She rolled toward him and hugged his legs.

Together they fell in the water. She was much stronger there, and his thrashing was no worse than the fish she ate for breakfast. When the bubbles from his face stopped, she let go of him and swam away. She didn’t bother to watch him sink.