The Wish Trade: The Mermaid’s Voice (Part 1)


A blue diamond as big as a man’s fist rolled onto the square wooden table.

“Hope Diamond, they call it,” its owner, a huge dark-skinned man, explained as he clasped his sausage-like hands about his round belly. “Got a kingdom in exchange for getting it off their hands. Cursed, you know.”

“A kingdom?” The young woman on his right laughed. “Jabiri, I can sell your diamond for two!”

“Well, it’s yours if you win, girl.”

Twirling the edges if her long black curls, the woman raised a brow at Jabiri. “Given my age, I’m hardly what you’d call a ‘girl.’”

“You should take it az a compliment, Brey,” the small man across Jabiri said with a smile. “You don’t look your four hundred sirty yearz.”

“Thank you, Viggo, for announcing my age for all the universes to hear.” She crossed her legs, her thigh-high leather boots squeaking her displeasure.

Viggo inclined his head in a gracious gesture. “You are velcome.”


Jabiri called one of the maids working in the small dimly-lit tavern to wait on them.

“Ready to order?” A thin girl with a low-cut blouse asked as she approached their table.

“Yes, I’ll have a pint of beer, lass,” Jabiri told her.

The maid took a small notebook from her faded billowing skirt. “Aye, sir,” she said as she scribbled. “And you, sir?”

Viggo shook his head. “Nossing for me.”

“Sherry,” the tall man in a black suit on Jabiri’s left said.

“Sherry, got that.” Then she turned to the young woman. “And what are you having, Miss Brey?”

“My usual brew, thank you.”


When the maid left, the tall man in black turned to Brey. “You know the girl?”

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