The Trouble With Rain
One Tuesday afternoon, the clouds rumbled mightily, and it began to rain. Princess Ariel didn’t mind the rain as much as the others who lived in the palace seemed to. Ariel had only been human for about a year, now, and found the soft, pattering sound of the rain on the palace roof to be quite comforting. Sometimes, when it rained, she liked to stroll along the beach to skip and dance in the wet sand. Then, she would return to the palace dripping wet, while the staff looked at her as if she had just sprouted a second head.
By Wednesday night it was still pouring, and the steady pounding of the rain sounded overhead while she sat with her husband in the palace library. Eric was busily attending to paperwork that he said was important. He would be crowned King soon, and the monarchy’s affairs absolutely had to be in order. While he signed document after document, Ariel continued her studies. There was still much to learn about being human. History. Economics. Literature. This night, Ariel was reading up on theology. She had converted to Eric’s religion when they first wed, and she found the Bible incredibly interesting. There was the story of Noah and his ark, for instance. Ariel gazed out the window, and wondered if it was possible to continuously rain for forty days and nights.
The dawn of light, on Thursday, only brought more rain. Feeling rather stir crazy by this time, Ariel ventured out to the beach. As she walked along the shore, she noted how much smaller the beach seemed. The water level was encroaching on the sand; it was almost as if the sea wanted to swallow the Earth whole. The rain was falling heavier, now, and again Ariel thought of Noah’s ark. Would the rain ever cease?
Friday’s forecast was more rain, again. By noon, Ariel’s stomach started to feel queasy; Carlotta sent the princess to bed immediately and called for the doctor. After she had been examined, Eric sat with her at the edge of their bed while the doctor delivered some news. Ariel was with child. They were going to be parents in about eight months time. Eric was over the moon at the revelation. Ariel was so nervous that she fell asleep for almost three days.
When the princess awoke on Monday, she found it was still raining. The ground floor of the palace was beginning to show signs of flooding. Eric appeared ill at ease. Apparently, the ongoing rain was ruining the kingdom’s crops. Several farmers were angry, and they expected Eric to find some solution to the problem. Did they honestly expect him to control the weather?
Today was Tuesday. Exactly one year earlier, the clouds rumbled mightily, and it began to rain. The rain hadn’t stopped since, not even for a minute. Ariel had an infant, now, a little girl. Her child had never known a world that wasn’t cold and wet, with rain stinging their faces. Months ago, the kingdom fled to higher ground. Not everyone survived the trek up the mountain, and the water level was increasing everyday. Tomorrow, Eric decided they would launch the ships, attempting to fit everyone they possibly could on Eric’s fleet of massive navy ships. Ariel wasn’t sure if an indefinite life on the sea was sustainable. Humans were not designed for such living. The princess resolved to contact her father, King Triton. Perhaps he’d be willing to turn anyone, who wished to be, into merfolk. They could find refuge in Atlantica. She didn’t know how Eric would receive her idea, but she had to try. After all, she had a daughter to think about. With or without her husband’s support, she would return to Atlantica. Ariel was ready to go back home.