She glided effortlessly high above the vast blue ocean. Looking below her she could see her sister teasing the flying fish as they leapt out of the water in a vain attempt to catch her. Her sister would never let them get close enough. She laughed when her sisters wings were drenched by the sea water because she flew too close to the crest of a wave.
Teeka and her sister are mischievous sea nymphs who have been sailing the sea air for over three hundred years. Although Teeka was the oldest by a century and never let her sister, Tico forget that fact. Teeka was the wisest of the nymphs in this part of the vast Pacific Ocean.
There were only fifty sea nymphs remaining alive in all the world in 1942 and Teeka and Tico had more than ten thousand square miles of ocean to observe. It was their duty to observe the ocean for sailors in distress or sea creatures that might need them. And only the creatures that live in the ocean knew of the nymphs existence. Humans did not believe that sea nymphs were real.
However, there have been mariners tales of creatures that flew who have saved stranded sailors and helped rescuers locate them. Although none have ever been seen. Only the stories of the seafarers remain the living record of them.
The last time a sailor had the aid of a sea nymph was at the turn of the nineteenth century, it was in 1832 that a small fishing boat capsized and a sea nymph alerted rescuers for the drowning sailor. In fact, it was Teeka herself who was that nymph. She never forgot the sailor she rescued. She was almost seen by him. Her swift departing flight was the only thing that saved her being discovered.
On this day, Teeka and Tico were watching a new form of water travel. Teeka had never seen such a craft. And the size of it made her and her sister want to investigate further. Teeka reminded her sister to stay close to her as they flew swiftly above the vessel.
Teeka could see that it was not made of wood or straw and it was dark in color. Almost the color of a rain filled cloud. She saw that the vessel had strange winged creatures on top of the flat surface of the craft. And she saw humans moving on top of the vessel. And smoke rising from somewhere within.
Tico wanted to fly closer to take a better look. But Teeka told her that it would be unwise to venture closer. It would be dangerous.
Suddenly, Teeka heard a strange sound that she has never heard before. She looked toward the sound and saw that it was a flying thing. It was loud but did not look like the winged things that were on top of the large vessel. She looked closer and saw that it was flying very fast and was headed for the large vessel. She saw flashes from the wings and saw sparks on the vessel. Then in an instant, the loud flying thing exploded in a bright flash. She saw that the large vessel had a way of defending itself.
Teeka and her sister watched the vessel for some time before Teeka said that it was time to leave and return to the upper skies. “We need to get back to our father, Strato will be worried. And we need to tell him about this large vessel. He will tell us what to do.”
Teeka and Tico flew high into the sky, and vanished into the stratosphere.
Below aboard the aircraft carrier, the men of the ship repaired the damage done to the ship by the guns of the enemy plane. They gathered the ones wounded in the brief battle. Reloaded the deck guns and returned to normal duties.
The ship was about to enter into a larger battle and one pilot will be the first human in this century that the nymphs would meet. And, talk to.
A few days later, Teeka and Tico again were flying high above their ocean when they saw in the distance, the large vessel that they saw before. It looked the same and they saw that the winged things that were on top of the vessel were flying around it. And there were other flying things flying around them. Teeka could see flashes from the wings of some of the things and she could see some of the other things exploding and crashing into the ocean.
Some of the flying things returned to the large vessel. Teeka could see the humans taking care of them after they returned. Tico saw something more, “sister! Look! There is another flying thing going away and it looks like it is chasing one of the other things! We need to follow them and watch them!”
“Tico, we can’t. We have to observe the large vessel here.” Teeka felt that was their duty.
“Well, you stay here then. I’m going to follow them. We have to know what they are doing. I will observe only okay? I’ll be back.” Tico was curious about them all.
“Okay, observe only and let me know what they do. Be careful.”
Tico smiled and flew off toward the flying things that had flown farther away. She being a nymph was of course faster than any aircraft. She was catching up to the flying things. She looked back and saw that she was far from Teeka and the vessel. Then she heard an explosion, then another. both of the flying things had exploded. Only, she saw something that she could not understand. From the flying thing from the vessel, a large cocoon was floating toward the ocean and on one end of the web was a human. Tico hovered high above the parachute as it carried it’s pilot safely to the waters below.
“Son of a……carrier will never spot me out here! Damn!” said the pilot. The pilot was young Ensign Tim Stevens. He had been a pilot for only a year when the war broke out. After his flight training, he was sent to the Pacific and reported aboard his carrier only two weeks ago. And this was his first combat action. And, he hated the water.
Tico watched as she could see the human get untangled from the web that dropped him into the ocean. Then she watched as he just floated in the water, she thought that he looked like he needed help. And she thought he was a fine looking human. She was very curious to get closer.
Ensign Stevens searched his flight suit for his rescue gear. He found his mirror and his strobe. He also had a small pouch that contained a few ocean survival articles. Tim thought that they were useless without something to keep him afloat.
Tico flew in closer. She remained behind the human and out of his sight. She did not want him to see her. But then a strange sensation overcame her. She wanted to be seen. She wanted to let the human know that he is not alone. And that she had the power to save him.
Ensign Stevens found a tube of medical cream and he opened it then applied some of the cream to his face to prevent his skin from burning from the sun. “Survival people could have at least packed a beer in this bag! That would be a rescue, not this tiny bottle of one sip of water.”
He started hearing something that sounded like a hummingbird. But he knew that was impossible, there are no hummingbirds this far out into the ocean. The sound became a little more clear. Then he turned his head and saw it. “Holy cow!” was all that he could get out.
Tico was hovering just about his head. She looked into his eyes to read his mind. A nymph had the power to look into the eyes of humans and see inside their heart and soul. They could tell a good human from a bad one.
Tico saw a good human in his eyes. His heart told her that he was a gentle person and loved life. Tico spoke.
“Hello human. Please do not be afraid. My name is Tico. I saw you float into the water hanging from your cocoon. I am here to rescue you. I am a sea nymph. I see that you are worried that your vessel will not find you. It will find you. Now, sleep.” With that, Tico hovered over Ensign Stevens head and let her gossamer wings brush across his hair. In an instant, he was asleep.
With the magic and power of the nymphs from the ancients, Tico transported Ensign Stevens to within sight of the large carrier. A lookout on board the ship suddenly spotted someone floating in the water in front of the ship.
Tico softly kissed the human on his forehead then quickly flew into the clouds where Teeka was waiting. “It’s about time you came back. I saw. It is a good thing you did. This human would not have been found if you had not convinced me to let you follow the flying things.”
“We must go report to our father, Strato, now Tico. He will love what you did.”
With that, the two nymphs flew into the stratosphere and were out of sight.
In the medical bay aboard the carrier, a tired young Ensign laid on a bunk and told the corpsman what happened and how he was rescued.
“Yeah, right sir, nymphs and flying things. I believe you Ensign Stevens. I’ll get the chaplain down here to talk to you. Goodnight sir.” The corpsman humored the Ensign then departed.
The story of the sea nymph rescuing a downed pilot would be repeated all during the war. And will be forgotten in 1946.
Teeka and Tico remain to this day observing the ocean for sailors in distress.
The little Mystic they called Lightfire was enjoying his solitary think walk through the forest. His thoughts were of his friend Hightoe. Hightoe had upset one of the elders by arguing with him that he thought the grassflies should be herded over the grasses and not flutter around the huts in the...