Suddenly, Mermaid.

The white porcelain shone in the yellow-bulb light. Mark looked down at his hands, they hung over the edge of the tub – the tips of his fingers were white and bloodless. He slapped his hands against the sides, trying to awaken his flesh.

Mark didn’t know where he was. The tub was an older style, all white and round — but the room appeared to be a middle-range motel of some sort. The tub was full of ice, a brittle square line right below his nipples.

He felt his stomach turn. He’d heard the stories. Mark forced his hands down below the ice, feeling glacially for the fresh stitch marks, the gaping bloody hole.

There was no hole. Also, there were no legs.

Unbroken blue scales, starting from below his ribs running down into a  trim point — three massive flapping fins at the end.

Mark screamed, hurling grocery-store ice all over the floor. His new tail spasmed, making even more of the cubes fly through the air.

He rocked back and forth in the tub, and finally managed to flip himself out onto the cold terra cotta floor. He could just spy his laptop bag through the cracked doorway, and he wriggled toward it. His new tail was difficult to control — he finally realized that the tail bent the opposite way of his old human knees, and then he was able to scooch more ably.

Mark clawed at the bag, blood and pain returning to his fingertips – and he fished out his cell. With the screen an inch from his face, he updated his status.

Mark Cotton – Best birthday ever!

Mark sighed happily, and pulled the tin of sardines he’d prepared from the side pocket.

[Story on Demand for Jason.  As old comedian’s say — ‘It can’t be Christmas every day.’ Sorry that this was the best by beleaguered brain could manage.]

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