scuba gooding
Like this place wasn't enough of a zoo? - Chapter 3 - Forestwater - Camp Camp (Web Series) [Archive of Our Own]
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

Chapter 3: Headbutts & Catnaps

Camper-counselor bonding happens in some pretty unique ways.

CW: use of the r-word in the beginning of the second section

“Sorry, nerd! Actually, I’m not sorry, and my sarcastic apology is meant to further annoy you. It’s a quick and effective way to get attention.”

Gwen sighed. “Nurf, get over here. And run.”

She’d discovered after a few weeks that their resident bully tended to keep to himself when he had something to do. It was a combination of lack of attention, boredom, and pent-up aggression that seemed to cause the most trouble, and while David wasn’t a huge fan of the solution she’d come up with —

The boy broke into a trot, lowering his head as he thundered past the other campers. Gwen crouched down and braced herself, closing her eyes.

“Grahh!” He collided into her with enough force to send her back a few feet, their heels kicking up a massive cloud of dust. She tossed her head, shaking him off, and they backed up without taking their eyes off each other.

— he had to admit it worked.

Keep reading

[dream catcher, pt.3]

PT. 1 | PT. 2 | PT. 3 | PT. 4 | PT. 5 | PT. 6

words: 4.1k 

genre: hmm tbh its a bit of a mystery, there will deff be some fluff and angst, and im thinking about adding some light smut along the way..

synopsis: a dream catcher; someone who captures their dreams by placing a memory inside an object that fits the setting. they are able to revisit their dreams by touching said object before they go to sleep, and can bring others into their dream by having them touch the same object as well.

the guidelines seem confusing to you when you accidentally stumble into your friends dream and meet an oddly charming yet sweet individual named joshua. while the experience leaves you feeling a bit shaken, you can’t deny the fact you want to see him again, and again… and again.

Maury’s jaw fell slack when she noticed you lifelessly stalk into the kitchen, your hair all smothered to one side of your head while your eyes were quite puffy from just awakening. She mustered a giggle and continued to drag the egg yolk around the frying pan, obviously your first night of being a dream catcher didn’t go too smoothly. You collapsed at the table and let your arms hang limply by your sides, the hard surface of your forehead soon slamming against the stained wood. Dragging yourself around a desert rippling with heat proved to be an exhausting experience, and you were feeling the fictional ache in your bones seep into your real ones.

After turning off the burner, Maury brought you breakfast, the heavenly warmth of your food radiating from the plate. When you didn’t lift your head, Maury leaned forwards and knocked next to you on the table, a fork full of fluffy scrambled eggs hanging from her mouth.

“Someone had a rough night.” She said in sympathy, though when you finally met the soft glow of her eyes, she was impishly grinning at you. Your hollow glare didn’t cease even when you began shovelling down your breakfast, the venom in your stare causing Maury to roll her eyes in retaliation.

“Okay, I guess I should have told you the first few dreams are usually a kick in the ass.” She said while pouring herself a glass of orange juice. You almost choked on the hunk of bagel you were chewing, your hand coming to massage your neck as you gruesomely swallowed the lump sitting in your throat.

“You knew my dream would be shit and you didn’t think that would be useful information to tell me?” You whined while gulping down a swig of water. Maury delayed her response by taking an unusually long sip of orange juice, the glass half empty when she placed it back on her coaster. She thought it would be humorous to have you experience your first dream without too much information learned prior, especially since she shared a similar adventure.

“Okay, I admit, I admit.” Maury chuckled, her eyes continuously flickering away from you. “You admit what?” You said back, your voice creeping lower. “I should have said something about your first few dreams being kinda hectic.”

You leaned back in your chair and poked your fork into the light yellow mountain of eggs, all the while biting into the right side of your cheek.

“Yeah, it was kinda hectic when I woke up in the middle of a desert on some train tracks and almost got completely trampled by a goddamn train.” The words dripped from your mouth like syrup as you leaned forwards over the table, your fingers harshly pressing into the grain of the wood. Maury could only stifle a breathy chuckle at the displeasure painted across your face, a heavy feeling sitting in the pit of her stomach. She felt regret over not telling you about the chaos of your first dream, especially since it almost involved you turning as flat as a pancake. A deep sigh fell past her lips and for the first time since breakfast started, she fully met your gaze.

“Okay, you’re right. I’m really sorry that I didn’t warn you, especially when I wish that someone would have warned me.” After hearing the tenderness to her voice and seeing the glint of regret in her eyes, you fell back into your chair and let your lips pull into a timid grin.

“Don’t worry about it, I’m just being bitter because of all the sand I tripped over.” Maury giggled and the atmosphere quickly turned brighter, literally brighter, because a golden ray of sunshine splashed through the tall window pane behind you, the puffy blue birds soon commencing in their melodic chirping. You turned around from admiring the scenery outside the glass and dove into the food left on your plate, a low growl still gurgling from the pit of your empty stomach.

“So what was your first dream catcher experience, apart from meeting Joshua.” You mumbled around the last bite of your bagel. Maury suddenly drew in a large breath through her clenched teeth and raised her eyebrows, a laugh spilling from her lips before any actual words.

“I woke up in a tigers cage.”

You didn’t really feel like that needed any further explanation. Quickly you changed the subject, even though your couldn’t hide the shock mixed with amusement nipping at your features. “So, how was Joshua-, I mean how was playing with Joshua?” You stumbled, an undeniable embarrassment marking the flesh of your cheeks. Maury payed no mind to your giddiness and instead finished off her breakfast, a glimpse of her teeth flashing as she smiled. The subject of Joshua always made her flush with happiness, and you couldn’t help but wonder if Maury was crushing on him.

“Everything went as planned. Just a nice, relaxed session like always.” You nodded at her and forged a grin, watching as she took away your plates to rinse in the sink. “We both picked up the song really well, it was fun.”

Your eyes bored into her back, the sound of running water filling your ears and reminding you to take your glass to wash. “That’s cool.” You said while standing next to her, a weight forming in your chest. There was one question you really wanted to ask, but you felt out of place mentioning it, especially if Maury really did having feelings for Joshua. Just the thought of asking it made you grind your teeth, you only met the boy once and already you were wondering silly little heart fluttering things. You couldn’t tear your pupils away from the bubblegum pink blush on her cheeks, or the way her eyes shimmered like glitter under the sunlight. However it was just as equally chipping away at you for not asking it, so swallowing the lump in your throat you stuttered out your question.

“D-Did he ask about me?” You were cringing as the words left your lips, and you couldn’t miss the way Maury quickly pressed her lips together. She shut off the water and grabbed hold of the green dish soap, the pleasant smell of green apples tinging the air. You tugged at the bottom of your sweater when she didn’t reply, her eyes focused on squeezing a bubbly sponge.

“He did actually.” Maury suddenly said, her head angling towards you so you could see her smile. It felt like a bath bomb went off in your stomach and tingled its stream of colour throughout your every limb, your teeth sinking into the flesh of your lower lip to suppress the wide smile that threatened to show. The fabric caught between your fingers only bunched up tighter when you harshly gripped it, the sporadic fizziness inside you slowly beginning to simmer. Joshua had asked about you, and that made you feel less bitter towards being stranded in a desert. Maury continued to place the dishes in the drying rack, so you grabbed a towel to help clear the clutter for the other dishes soon to come. As you rubbed the cloth around the plate, you perked up when Maury spoke once more.

“He was curious about how you took in being a dream catcher, and if you were still mad at him for not answering your questions.” The chuckle that rose from your throat made Maury quickly spare a glance towards you, the blush that tinted her cheeks long gone. Your backside dug into the edge of the counter as you dried the last glass, sunshine still spilling in through the windows and creating a liquid sheen in your eyes. You seemed to be fading off into your own little world, because you hardly recognized Maury’s voice as she told you the cup in your hands had seen enough drying.

You looked down at the sparkling glass between your dish cloth and grinned sheepishly. “Oh, right… So are you gonna meet up again tonight?” Maury disappeared into the living room after resting the rubber gloves back underneath the sink, her voice bouncing off the walls. “Not until Thursday! I’m going scuba diving tonight.”

“Good luck!” You shouted back while prancing up the staircase, your light footsteps hardly cracking against the wood. The experience you fell into last night was definitely not one you wanted to have again, and again, for however many nights the chaotic dreams unfolded until the more cheery ones took place. Your mattress creaked when you flopped onto it, your cheek mushed against the plush fabric of your pillow as a sneaky little plan formulated inside your brain. Maybe tonight you would pay Joshua another visit, just to fully clarify that you were indeed not still mad and that you were ready to embrace the blissfulness of capturing your own dreams.

It was 11:00 when Maury finally heaved herself up from your bedroom floor and gave you a hug, “I’m going to bed now, goodnight Y/N.” She hummed. You patted her shoulder and wished her likewise, making sure to crack a joke about the scuba diving adventure she was soon to embark on. You didn’t burst into action as soon as she crawled underneath her covers, you would have to wait about an hour or so until Maury was completely submerged in her fictional world, until she was not even capable of hearing a sound.

The time passed fairly quickly as you were browsing on your phone throughout the hour, your body now resembling a wooden board from how stiff you’d grown. After stretching all the little cracks and pops out of your bones, you slithered like a snake towards the bottom level of the house and towards the hall that led to Maury’s bedroom. There was nothing but crisp blackness surrounding you, the sheen of moonlight no longer reaching this far down the hall. Before entering your best friends room, you inhaled a deep breath through your lungs and tried to steady the frantic beat of your heart. You hadn’t really done anything this sneaky before, and the thought of getting caught kept your pulse thundering at an uneasy pace. Your fingers curled around the cool brass of the door handle and little by little you twisted it until there was a gap large enough for you to soundlessly slip through.

The darkness that swallowed every inch of the room made it impossible for you to see, and your dumb self grimaced for forgetting the device you’d been holding for the past hour. But not all hope was lost, a soft glow flitted in the corner, and after many slow and long steps you were at Maury’s bedside table. You bit roughly into your lip as you disconnected her phone from the charger, flinching at the little noise it decided to make at the loss of connection. It took you about 3 minutes to find the little tray of necklaces Maury kept, and if you had to take a guess, the necklace would be the one with a tiny silver dragonfly on it. You held the jewelry between your palm and lightly squeezed it for 30 seconds or so, the glow of the phone eventually dying away until you were standing in a coat of blackness.

Suddenly a creaky noise split through the air, a lump forming in your throat as pure panic jolted into your bones. Maury seemed to shift positions on her bed, though she never woke up. The minute you carefully lowered her phone back to the bedside table you were gone, but of course you had to bang your toe on the frame of the doorway before you left. Scuba diving must have been pretty enticing because Maury didn’t move a muscle as you painfully dragged yourself down the hallway.

When you reached the comfort of your own room, you released a long sigh of satisfaction, your eyelids fluttering shut for a few seconds at the thought of what you just did.

Just for tonight, you told yourself, tonight you see Joshua and then that’s it.

Falling asleep was a painstakingly long process, but when you fell into the gaping abyss of the dream world, you knew you were in for a solid night. Like the time when you first awoke in Maury’s dream, moonlight pooled in from behind the thin curtains, it’s watery sheen bathing over the wooden floor. You shot awake in bed, a large smile plastered on your face as your limbs itched with excitement. Should you have been this eager to see Joshua’s silky pink hair and perfectly carved features again? Probably not, but maybe it was the fact that this was suppose to be a secret, it was something you needed to do without Maury knowing. You didn’t hesitate to whip off the blankets that covered your lap and wander to the main floor, your ears fully expecting to hear the alluring melody of guitar chords.

When you heard nothing but the ticking of a clock that only stayed on 12am, and the shallow noise of your own breathing did you nervously lick your lips. It was quite a possibility that Joshua never returned to this house unless he was playing guitar with Maury, and that made you feel like a complete fool. Sure enough the living room was lacking the warmth of his presence and the kitchen was empty as well. Just to make sure you weren’t crazy you checked Maury’s bedroom and breathed a sigh of relief to see that the sheets were bare. You glumly scratched your forehead at your misfortune. Of course this would happen to you, you never thought things through.

I’m going back to bed.

You were only a few stairs up the staircase when you froze in your tracks, the noise of something fiddling with the door handle causing your heart to hammer. Casting a wary look over your shoulder, you almost lost your grip on the wooden railing at seeing a nicely dressed Joshua slip through into view, his guitar case slung over his shoulder. After being so expectant of Joshua’s presence, you weren’t sure what to feel when he glanced up at you, his soft brown eyes sending pleasant shivers to prick at your flesh.

“Joshua? Where were you, I was thinking you were off in another dream.” You mumbled while remaining on the last stair from the floor. The electric nerves that bubbled in your stomach had you keeping a distance between each other, you didn’t want him to see how easily you grew flustered under his actions, though he seemed to already have a good idea.

“I don’t usually come here unless it’s with Maury, but I knew it wasn’t her who touched the necklace. It was you.” His cursed velvet smooth voice had a deep scarlet washing over your cheeks, his plump lips smirking at you from his position near the entryway. You never imagined yourself getting so flustered over a guy like this, but here you were, already fumbling in your place.

“Yeah, yeah, about that. She said you asked about me?” Your voice only grew quieter as it bounced off the walls, shyness covering your face like a blanket. Joshua didn’t say anything, he only shifted the large case off his shoulders and unzipped the black fabric, the glossy and stained spruce surface of his guitar reflecting the light. He then wandered into the living room while delicately strumming a few chords, and like a lost puppy, you followed him. Joshua took his usual spot on the couch and propped his guitar onto his lap, his fingers still picking at the strings to create a soothing melody. You awkwardly stood on the other of the coffee table and watched him, every single one his actions so graceful and gentle. It was hard to keep your eyes focused on Joshua’s guitar, especially when his cotton pink hair was now swiftly styled to show his forehead, his long sleeved button up exposing the milky skin above his collarbones. And why did his black jeans have to have rips on them, your glazed eyes didn’t know where to focus.

The trance you spiralled into shattered like glass when Joshua suddenly patted the cushion next to him, his voice as smooth as honey, “Y/N, come here.” You felt nailed to the spot at his words, the closest you’d gotten to Joshua was when you reached for his shoulder, but that didn’t go as planned. Swallowing thickly, you edged around the coffee table and sunk into the couch cushions, your whole body sizzling with white heat at the proximity to the boy. Taking in a deep breath was a mistake, the aroma of his cologne tickled your nose and had your nipping onto your lower lip. As expected, he was like a crisp breath of a shimmering ocean, your fingers harshly squeezing the flesh of your thighs to stop yourself from melting back against the couch.

“I did ask about you,” he said while running his fingers along the chords, “Maury filled me in and I can’t say I was surprised.” You glanced at him, “What did she say?”

Joshua didn’t answer right away, he continued to softly prick at his guitars chords while letting his warm gaze flicker over your features, your body shifting under the heat you felt from his stare. Why did he always feel the need to do that? You had no idea. He angled his head away from you, and very discreetly you released the breath you trapped in your lungs.

“She said you understood a lot better than the first time she explained dream catching, and that you were excited to try it out.” You kept your lips sealed as Joshua looked around the room, his fingers never shying away from the strings on his guitar.

“She also said,” you flinched when he struck a rather loud array of chords, his eyes clicking with yours, “that you think I’m charming.” If someone compared your eyes to two movie disks, that was how large they would be after hearing the words drip from Joshua’s mouth. You broke away from his gaze and looked at the imprints that your fingernails left on the flesh of your thighs, of course Maury told him I said that, I bet that makes him think he’s got even more power over me, you grumbled inside your head, well he doesn’t, he has no power.

However you couldn’t convince yourself that was true, Joshua had quite an impact over you, so much that a blind man could see it. When you had no reply, one of his pure chuckles rang through the air, his melody continuing.

“So what if I think you’re charming, Maury thinks you’re sweet. Did she ever tell you that?” You quipped while standing up from the couch, Joshua’s brown eyes following your every movement. When being put on the spot, you never reacted well, and as you felt the backs of your knees dig into the coffee table you knew you’d proved even more that Joshua had an impact over you. The boy strummed his instrument once before placing it behind the arm of the couch, his elbows coming to rest on his knees.

“Maury thinks a lot of things, Y/N.” You crinkled your nose.

“What’s that suppose to mean?” Joshua didn’t respond, he only set his chin on top of his palm and stared up at you, the glossy twinkle in his eyes giving him the most innocent look, though you were starting to develop a sense that Joshua wasn’t that innocent at all. You set a hand on your hip and glared at him, his inability at answering questions he brought you to ask in the first place setting a blaze in your chest.

“Oh my god just answer the question.” You snapped, the words flowing from your mouth like a river. Joshua suddenly looped his fingers around your wrist and pulled you down to sit beside him, a tiny squeal escaping through your parted lips. Unlike moments ago when there was an obvious gap between you, that gap had now vanished as your thighs were pressed against each other, his grip on your wrist turning tender at the thought of potentially hurting you. Blood was pumping through your veins at an inhuman pace, the only thought clouding your mind being how close you were to Joshua.

“If you want to know, then you only have to keep seeing me,” his voice had dropped so low, the warmth that usually settled in Joshua’s eyes now flickering to something you couldn’t read. You said what you shouldn’t have said, and there was an undeniable bite that came along with it.

“I can’t see you unless I touch Maury’s necklace.” You whispered, your foreheads so close they were almost touching. Another moment passed that you got the chance to study the depth of Joshua’s eyes and the smoothness to his skin, how plump and pink his lips were and how his voice sent shudders tingling down your spine. He seemed to be doing the same to you, and it took every ounce of your willpower to not pounce on him. You hated the disappointment that sunk like a rock in your stomach when Joshua pulled away and fished around in his pocket, the sight of his milky thighs calling out to you past the rips in his jeans.

“Here,” Joshua said, a guitar pick in his palm, “if you want to see me, then use this.” You felt hesitant about taking the pick from Joshua, especially if it meant going behind Maury’s back. If she did have feelings for the boy you were with now, then it would be incredibly low for you to see him while she was unaware.

Biting the inside of your cheek, you squeezed your thighs together, “I don’t think I can, I- I just think that it’s wrong to go against Maury like this.”

Joshua’s face momentarily scrunched up, his free hand balling into a fist to rest under his chin. “Why? You think it’s wrong because she likes me?” You cast a hollow look towards the pink haired boy, “You know that Maury likes you?”

“She already told me.” Joshua mumbled like it was something you should already know. When you placed your hands at your sides, you forgot how close you were to him and accidentally gripped his thigh, words stuttering off your tongue like a broken record.

“And from the way you act, I think you like me too.” Now you were choking on your own spit, and in no time flat you scrambled away from Joshua, a crackling fire forcing your fingers to shake and your knees to wobble. You crossed your arms over your chest and wasted very little time in defending yourself, though he only gained amusement from your act.

“That’s a little self absorbed of you to assume that, you know you have one girl who likes you and suddenly you think everyone likes you. I’m not going behind Maury’s back, and you shouldn’t either.” Joshua only mustered a sigh and stood from the couch, his fingers carding through the silk strands of pink on his head. You weren’t expecting him to approach you so boldly, your feet automatically shifting backwards the closer he got. His warm fingers latched onto your wrist, his hold being so gentle and soft that your words only got stuck in your throat. Joshua’s lips were next to your ear as you stared over his shoulder and along his smooth collarbones, your heart hammering inside your chest.

“Think what you want, but I’m still giving you this.” You refused to even breath when Joshua delicately unfolded your fingers and placed the guitar pick in your palm, “You won’t call it ‘going behind her back’ soon enough.”

Joshua pulled away from your ear to take in your presence one last time, his thumb running along your wrist as his glossy brown orbs traced over every feature of your face. You couldn’t look into his eyes, not when you were only proving his earlier statement by blushing a dark scarlet, your fingers shaking like a brittle leaf.

“I’m going, see you later, Y/N.” His touch still lingered on your wrist when he moved away from you, the sudden heat that was radiating from his body now replaced with a cool breeze that had you feeling bitter. You stood stark as Joshua packed away his guitar and left quietly, the door clicking shut the only reminder that you were now alone. The guitar pick was still lodged between your fingers, the eerily silenced world around you causing you to hold the little chip tighter in your grasp.

You couldn’t deny the fact you wanted to see Joshua again, but then there was Maury. Helpless confusion was swallowing you whole, it was making your head spin and your heart race. No matter what else you tried to cloud your mind with, you felt like you were about to be the centre of a possible storm.

A/N: i got a lot of asks about maury being kinda fishy and tbh im laughing cause do i have shit planned boi;) ALSO ONE OF U ASKED IF THERE WOULD BE A FIST FIGHT BETWEEN Y/N AND MAURY IM CACKLINGG

anonymous asked:

How did you get into the mermaid business? Was it easy ? (Cuz that seems like the most amazing job ever)

First I got a tail and a shell bra - pretty basic mermaid starting kit stuff. I then needed to get a license (because you can’t just go out and do mermaid birthday parties, that’s illegal in the U.S.A.) In my state, New York, you can either get a performer’s license or a DBA (doing business as) - I have a DBA. Not every state in the U.S.A. has a DBA. (You need to look at your states government website.) Then you need an insurance because if a client doesn’t have a pool at their home and needs to book a place, the place doesn’t want to be responsible if something bad happens to you or children - you need liability insurance (LIFE INSURANCE DOES NOT COUNT). I think getting the DBA was the easiest part.

Being professional can be very, very difficult. Once you get a tail and get a website and you make business/post cards that doesn’t mean everyone is knocking on your door booking you for parties. You’re going to put in A LOT more money going into this than you will be making out of it in the first few years. I know mermaids with full silicone tails, going in the ocean and taking stunning underwater pictures, doing photoshoots with other mermaids and have never been hired for any type of event where they are getting paid. I feel very lucky because in my state, there’s another professional mermaid but she is very far from me so we aren’t competition to each other and some clients that want to book her are a lot more closer to me than they are to her so she sends them over to me and that’s how I’ve gotten some of my gigs. I also have a background in child education which is very good to have (people in high school - if your school does a BOCES program with child education or a child education program in high school and are strongly considering becoming a professional mermaid - TAKE THIS CLASS!), I got to learn what goes into educating a child and I actually got to work with children and I actually had to do “classes” and teach them. I wasn’t really the best with children and taking this class was very helpful for me. You’ll also be in a tail for an hour, maybe more, so make sure you’re fit, my tail weighs about 20lbs in the water, I do float up but I’m constantly moving around so I want to be able to swim around for a few hours without my legs hurting and me feeling exhausted. There’s also potiental “mermaid rides” where kids hold onto your shoulders and you swim on the surface and swim from one side of the pool to the other. Mermaid rides can be very tiring, I think I did 50 in a row with no break to 20 kids - I was so exhausted. There’s also tail maintence, just because you buy a tail doesn’t mean it’s going to be perfect forever. I’m very rough in my tail and I shouldn’t be, but the heels on my tail and the backside the paint has come off, I got advice from another mermaid to buy silicone and eyeshadow the color of my tail and mix it together and paint it on the spots the paint is gone - very helpful. You also have to wash your tail, it can smell very bad sometimes after using it - I use vinegar to wash my tail, and you should hang your tail upside down (fluke up) so the water drips out of the tail and dries it, or you can use a blow dryer (use cold air), I’ve seen mermaids use pull up bars you can in your house to hold their tail upside down or putting up coat hooks.

Promotion - Business cards and post cards are very good to hand out, I definitely spent over $100 on cards. I put my cards all over the place, mostly food stores like Stop & Shop, A&P, Hannafords (i think those are all mostly New England food stores). I did a free meet & greet in Newburgh, New York for the Art About Water event, I handed out booklets about pollution in the water and how to prevent pollution, along with the booklets I also had my post cards in the booklets and I handed everyone a shell. My Uncle also owns a company so he gives my cards to his clients. I’ve also met the Mayor of Bedford Hills (I think it was the mayor or someone who worked with him) at a restaurant because I have family in Bedford Hills so I talked to him about my mermaid job, gave him my card, and we talked about local parks and celebrations there and I said I’d be open to doing a meet & greet or something there. There’s also mermaid meet up, most of the meet ups are in Coney Island so I go there a lot and hand out cards and take pictures with people. There’s also tumblr, facebook, instagram, youtube, those are very good sites for social media to get your name out.

There’s also things you need to consider. Do you have a mertender/merwrangler? That is someone who is with you at events, they are there to help you. You want to keep the magic alive so you can’t show up at a party or event and put your tail on infront of your little clients so you put your tail on somewhere hidden and you have your mertender/merwrangler pick you up and carry you (I’ve recently aqcuired a wheelchair so no one has to carry me anymore). It’s best to have someone you know with you because you can trust them, having a stranger off Craigslist you never know what you’re going to get. You don’t need to have the same mertender/merwrangler at every event, I don’t. You can ask your client that you may need additional help because you don’t have a mertender/merwrangler, I, personally, don’t feel like that’s professional, that’s just me, I know other mermaids have done it and that’s their business so I don’t get to have an opinion on them. Do you have transportation? People that live in cities, for example, New York City or Brooklyn, mermaids are able to take trains and subways or taxis to get around. I live in the suburbs so I have my own car. Just make sure you have a way of getting to your event. Do you know what to do? Do you know what to bring when doing an event? Do you kinda have ideas what to do at an event? I suggest watching videos of professional mermaids on youtube and see what they do. Mernetwork is also a forum site for mermaids with tons of answers to any question you may have. Do you have tattoos or piercings? Some clients may not want their mermaid to have tattoos or piercings. I have 5 tattoos, one is on my leg so my tail covers it, I have one my waist and luckily my tail covers it, I have 2 behind my ear my hair covers it but one time while I was in water giving mermaid rides a child called me out on it and I giggled and talked about something else, I have a tattoo on my wrist, I have a big shell bracelet to cover it up, I do have back up stories if someone does ask about how mermaids have tattoos. I also have a hell of a lot of piercings, mostly on my face. I have a dermal anchor implant for an anti-eyebrow, I cannot take that out unless it’s surgically removed, my implant is a clear gem so it looks like I stuck a gem under my eye so I’m good there, I have a lip piercing and 2 nose studs on my left nostril - I do take those out at parties, I also have clear jewelry that I may or may not put in depending on how I feel. You may have a client who doesn’t want a mermaid with tattoos or piercings (I don’t know what people’s problems are with it, I can see how it doesn’t look very magical but I mostly take out my nose studs and cover my wrist tattoo but I have done gigs where I didn’t take anything out or cover anything and have never gotten a complaint.) I know a lot of people with tattoos and piercings that keep everything in and don’t cover any and they still get TONS of gigs. So you can do whatever you feel most comfortable with.

If you want to go for aquarium jobs (which I’ve never done but have put in research into it because I want to do aquariums in the future when I feel ready), the best things to put on your resume is that you have done dance lessons (preferably ballet), CPR classes (which is good to have anyways whether you’re an aquarium mermaid or a birthday party mermaid), scuba diving lessons, a good breath hold, and knowing how to swim in a tail already (having your own tail can be a plus - you don’t have to have your own tail, some places will give you tails that they already have but if they don’t have your size they may not consider you because they either don’t want to spend the money or a tail can take 2 - 3 months to create just for you and they want someone now). I know someone who got interviewed for an aquarium job, she had a tattoo on her upper body, very visible, she did not get the job. Unfortunately, that’s a reality at some places. Disney won’t hire people with visible tattoos and some aquariums won’t hire you with visible tattoos. It really sucks but it happens. There is very strong waterproof makeup and tattoo cover up, I’ve never used it but when I do plan to try out for an aquarium job I plan to cover myself during my interview and during my performances.

Professional mermaiding is hard work, it isn’t “I got a tail now I’m going to go play mermaid”. You need to be professional with your persona, with your clients, at your events. You need to be fit for your tail, you’re tail is going to weigh a lot in water and it’s bound on your legs for a few hours - you’re going to need to be able to hold that tail up, constantly swimming, with a smile on your face and not a yawn from being tired or a tear from your legs hurting. You may not be getting gigs your first year of being licensed or not even your second year, getting gigs will be a lot of work, you may even need to do free gigs to get a clientelle worked up. You may be putting in a lot more money going into it than you will be getting your money back from it. You may struggle a lot and feel “I can’t do this” but I’ll let you know now, once you get your first gig, you will feel so great about yourself, you did it, you got your first gig, you did it.

It’s been a difficult journey, all my hard work, it’s been worth it.

The human body needs about 25 milliliters of pure oxygen with each breath, which you can get from 1.5 gallons of sea water. Now, a typical human takes about 15 breaths per minute, meaning that the teeny-weeny Triton would have to suck in and process 24 gallons of water per minute, assuming 100 percent efficiency. That’s like asking you to drain a large aquarium by drinking all of its water through a straw. You have one minute.

Do we have pumps that can do that? Sure, but they’re enormous and require a huge power supply, which altogether would make a Triton kit a hell of a lot bigger than a standard scuba kit.

Plus any good set of gills would also need a nitrogen tank, because pure oxygen will just kill you. To be fair, pulling air out of water is definitely possible, but there is currently no evidence that the Triton can do that. Even its producers agree, having recently announced that the whole “filtering water to get oxygen” thing isn’t possible yet, and that the Triton will simply house small, finite canisters of liquid oxygen. Not coincidentally, they also ended up refunding all of their backers’ money, after basically pulling the biggest bait-and-switch since the so-called “Hoverboard.”

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