The Mermaid and the Centaur
It was a warm and sunny afternoon, when Shaira was happily splashing her tail in the ocean waters with her best friends, Aisha and Kasia. For hours they would play their favorite game where the mermaid leaping the highest over the other would become 'Sea Princess of the Day.'
Giggling and laughing so hard that her tummy hurt, Shaira decided to let Aisha win today as she always felt that it was more fun to see her friends win.
Shaira's smile was wider than the horizon in the sky and her heart was bigger than the towering mountains above which seemed to touch the very sky. Her eyes were brighter than the bluest of waters she knew as her home. Her golden hair cascaded like a fresh waterfall down her back to her waist. From here on, Shaira had the slender tail of a fish which helped her swim faster and jump higher than any other human fish in the sea.
Her voice sang enchanting melodies that blew with the gentle sea breezes and stormy winds for miles and miles to lands faraway.
When Shaira was sad, she sang and hoped a special someone would hear her song.
There was someone she missed more than anything, - Shanan, the love of her many lives. Oh how she wondered where and who he was this time.....
Shaira first met Shanan many years ago when the heavens burst and created the stars and planets of our universe.
Shaira and Shanan shone side by side, brighter than the two stars of Gemini, lighting up the night sky with the brightness of the Moon.
Long ago, Sol and Luna were taking turns watching over the stars and decided to entertain themselves by playing a game of dice. Proud Sol said, " Let us make the game more fun by placing a little bet! " Luna enthusiastically asked, "Yes, what shall we bet?" Sol replied, "Every one hundred earth years, whoever wins, shall be given for one brief moment, the power of all the planets above to grant a wish to any stars that the winner chooses!"
Luna liked the idea and it was not very long before she won this game of dice. Luna immediately knew who the lucky star children would be - the two brightest in the heavens, Shaira and Shanan.
Chosen for their pure hearts and love for each other, sentimental Luna could not help but feel somewhat sad for them.
On the night of an eclipse, when Luna was at her most powerful, she appeared to Shaira and Shanan and asked; "Make a wish, children of the night sky, for I will make it come true!" "Oh Luna, we want to be closer to each other than stars in the sky!" cried Shaira and Shanan.
Luna began speaking the words of power and when the eclipse passed, Shaira and Shanan were reborn as two red roses, the most beautiful of flowers.
In a spectacular floral garden, they lived side by side once again, but this time, able to enjoy each other's company and sweet fragrance.
One hundred years passed and on this starry night, it was Luna's turn again to grant Shaira and Shanan yet another wish. With the help of Sol, Luna magically transformed herself into a butterfly of the brightest and prettiest of colors. She flew to the rose bush home of Shaira and Shanan and spoke, " My old friends, there is nothing more I would like to do, than to grant another wish for the two of you!"
The two red roses pleaded, "Oh, if only you will, what we want most it to be closer still!" The butterfly smiled, winked an eye at them and gracefully flew and disappeared into the baby blue sky.
Then out of a giant cloud, flew two lovely white-winged doves.
Shaira and Shanan were together again, but this time, traveling through the sky as symbols of universal peace.
Meanwhile, Shaira and Shanan's hearts were content but something they felt, was still missing. Luna sensed this sadness and could not wait to be able to grant them another wish.
The time eventually came and Luna transformed herself into a magnificent palm tree and planted herself near the old rose garden home of Shaira and Shanan.
One very hot summer day, the doves flew to this special palm tree to find a little bit of shade. Suddenly, the palm tree spoke, "Again a hundred years have come and gone, tell me what it is that you wish upon?" Shaira and Shanan cried out " By all your powers from above, what we have together is true love, if only we could now hold hands, and walk side by side through distant lands!"
Luna wanted to add some excitement and replied, "This will be done, but let's make it more fun, to make your wish come true for you, there is one thing you both must agree to do."
"What is it?" asked the doves. "You must wait longer if this is your will, but only to be re-born closer still.
A thousand nights spent apart, will bring more strength to each other's heart." Said Luna.
Shaira and Shanan answered, "Yes, to be closer than ever before is surely worth waiting for."
Content with this reply, Luna vanished into the rich earth.
And so they waited.....
Two hundred years passed and Shaira's sea-mates knew that she was sad as she often thought of Shanan, hoping the day would soon come when they would be together again
Shaira felt a bit tired today and gracefully swam to the sandy shore for a little afternoon nap. As she fell asleep under the warmth of the sun, she dreamt of Shanan. In her dream, a seahorse spoke, "The one you wait for is nearby, this I promise you is no lie. "
Shanan had been roaming the lands all this time searching for his beloved Shaira. He looked for her in all forms of life on earth. But today, he too grew most tired and discouraged. As he lay down to rest, he quickly fell asleep. In his dream, a seahorse also appeared and said, "Wait no more for her my friend, this is the beginning and not the end." Shanan instantly awoke determined now, more than ever, to keep looking even harder for Shaira.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the bushes, Shaira was awakened by the sounds of distant galloping. "Am I still dreaming?" she asked herself. Her eyes opened wide when she saw the handsome centaur who had stopped to drink some water from a nearby pond. Shaira's heart began to pound so loud that she could hear it!
She immediately recognized Shanan's soul. Feeling her presence, Shanan looked up only to find himself gazing into Shaira's crystal blue eyes and said, "I knew you were near because your song led me here!" Shaira replied, "I sang to you from my heart, each day that we have been apart."
From the distant waters you could hear Aisha and Kasia singing and rejoicing at the sight of them holding hands for the very first time.
Then suddenly, from the bushes appeared a unicorn of a lavender color who galloped proudly up to Shaira and Shanan. Like a warm spring shower, a golden ray of light shone from its horn bathing Shaira from head to tail and Shanan from head to hooves.
The unicorn's work was done as she galloped away into the bushes whereshe came from. Shaira and Shanan looked at each other and saw that she was no longer a mermaid and he was no longer a centaur. Now they were people just like you and me!
As they gazed down and started jumping and skipping about getting used to their brand new legs and feet, they suddenly realized that the magical unicorn had been their old friend, Luna who made true the best wish of all.
Together, Shaira and Shanan continued to live happily as Children of the Moon, King and Queen of the Kingdom of Lunaria, named in honor of their old friend, Luna.
© 2003 Ana Ruiz