18 comments

 Meg curiously looked down at the fish, struggling to hold a straight face. This was the animal who had been perfect. She laughed at the thought. The young fish pleaded with Meg. "All I want is the prophecy, before I get a hold of my fate." Meg glanced around her shack, no better than the standard witches' nook, or perhaps, an evil sorceress. A small cauldron, books of magic, and the ball of prophecies. Every other animal wasn't good enough, except for the fish. This fish, she thought to herself, was just right. Swimming in his tiny bowl, the fish looked her way. 

    "What are you hiding Meg? What do you want to prove, so badly that you take me from my home?" Meg placed her hands against the window pane and sighed, heart filled with regret.

      "Oh fish, I don't want you! My life is on the line because of myself, and I have to do this! I know this doesn't make any sense, but being nice won't get you anywhere." She brought the ball of prophecies and spoke once more. "Your fate is to become re-born, to suffer, and the more you suffer-the more my power grows. And I will be accepted again-you see fish, you have everything I need. Strong will, strong heart-everything I want to be." The fish rolled his eyes, wondering how he got himself into this situation. 

       "Strong heart? Literally or metaphorically?" With that, Meg sighed, and everything went dark. 

   "Alice, come here! Your father awaits your arrival!" The fish woke to a bowl, but not of his own. Everything was white. He was in a laboratory. Alice's father, the head scientist, tapped on the glass. 

         "A fine specimen, isn't this little one!"Alice rolled her eyes having recently entered the room. 

         "Don't put the fish in misery dad." So this was the fishy's fate. He swiveled around in the water to see a mirror. The fish had turned into someone different, or rather someTHING different. Claws protruded out of its face making it egg-shaped. He suddenly felt the urge to gasp for air, and came up, finding a slit under his lower lip opening and closing. 

      "No more gills I see. But how can it hold its breath underwater for so long. It looks like a fish, doesn't it Alice?" The head scientist tapped on the glass once again while Alice tapped her finger to her chin. 

        "I guess I should name you little fella. How about Mr. Pointyfins?" And so the fish accepted a new life, a new look, and a new name, by gasping for air. 

        Meg skipped down the road and into a forest hidden from the naked eye to the sorcerer school for young sorcerers. A nearly shredded sign hung before it read evil, but it was so scratched up and flakes of paint were peeling off, that one could assume a good sorcerer went there. Meg could never understand why they put sorcerer instead of sorceress, but today she had bigger things to ponder. She, Meg Marshall, had put something in misery, completing her first assignment at the Evil Sorcerer School for Young Sorcerers. Surely she wouldn't be considered a disgrace by Teacher Mary or her family. A tiny bit of her kind of felt bad for the fish and her favorite quote came to mind. "If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."-Albert Einstein. Sometimes, Meg wondered if she was that fish, being judged for being nice instead of evil, but was really meant to be good. But those rebel moments only lasted a few seconds. Now it was too late to turn back. Now she would be praised by everyone. 

     Mr. Pointyfins was viewed by a lot of scientists, and every afternoon, Alice told him her deepest, darkest secrets. They were quite disturbing, but Alice stated, "As you can't talk, I can relay a lot of information that you'll never remember. It's science you know!" That was why he never talked openly to humans. The fish still preferred being nameless, but nobody called him Mr. Pointyfins except Alice. The head scientist often called him "experiment", or "test subject" Meg had turned the fish's life into a miserable nightmare, and all he longed for was to be normal, and live with his family, but to do that, he had to find Meg. A small fish like himself would confront the sorceress, and make her pay. 

       Just then, Alice bounded into the lab.

       "I'll miss you Mr. Pointyfins. You're being released into the wild because my father has better things to do than study a regular crab. He says that it's a disorder, but even a regular kid like me knows you're a fish. I think he just wants to give up on you. Maybe you are special, but people are ignoring you. Don't tell daddy!" The fish jumped in and out of the bowl, heart soaring. He would get revenge soon enough. 

     Class started with Meg daydreaming about her new class status, friends, and a new wand from her parents. Perhaps her older sister might even take her out to dinner once in a while. Suddenly, teacher Mary brought a ruler down on Meg's desk. 

     "You! Time for your presentation" Finally, her time had come. Teacher Mary grunted under her breath, a big frown pasted on her face as Meg made her way to the front of the room. 

     "Hello fellow-" 

     "No formality!!!" Teacher Mary spat. "What did you put in MISERY!" Her yells were so loud that the walls of the room shook. 

     "Umm, a fish- I turned it into an ugly-" Teacher Mary cut Meg off and laughed hysterically. 

     "You put a tiny FISH in misery! Hah, your parents will be so disappointed in you Meg. They'll never accept you as a sorceress. You're just too nice." Meg burst out of the school, anger consuming her. She didn't know where to go. 

      Apparently, setting a fish into the wild meant flushing it down the toilet. The head scientist waved goodbye as the fish was let into the sewer system. Mr. Pointyfins was barely able to gasp for air in the pipes, and his claws kept getting in the way. When he fell into more water, everything suddenly calmed. Maybe he was in a river, or stream, somewhere peaceful, but no. The fish had fallen into murky sewage, which didn't look too promising. He was able to get a good look around to see a girl running through the forest, half invisible. Meg. So, could a fish like him live on land?

      All she was was a sorceress who took everything in a nice way. She was too naive to realize that putting a fish in misery wasn't good enough. Meg tried to run out of the forest, but as she was running, tripped over a peculiar looking crab-fish. Oh no. The prophecy was made up after all. Meg was kicked out of her only home, stole their prophecy ball, and was trying to make a living. Who knew she would actually need it one day? The fish used its claws to pinch Meg on her calf, and getting very angry, reached for Meg's wand. She thrashed, failing to capture the creature, until her wand zapped the fish, making it as big as a crab. 

      The fish was about to get its revenge. The girl stole everything from him, but instead of focusing, he saw a tree. Meg had climbed up the tree, but fish couldn't climb trees. Could they? 

    Meg stared in bewilderment as the crab-fish-thing began to climb the tree. She had been right all along. She wasn't meant for this life. Soon, when the fish was level with Meg, he stared into her eyes with empathy. "Can you send me home?" Meg again curiously eyed the fish. This was a fish in a tree. She brought out her wand, and before sending him off, inquired, "Do you like Albert Einstein?"

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.

18 comments

Zilla Babbitt
18:44 May 19, 2020

You asked me to read, so here I am. Crazy interesting! Good twist on the prompt and I like the way you portray the characters of Meg and Teacher Mary. A few things: putting extra space between the jumps from Meg to Alice would be less confusing. And in the beginning it was rather confusing-- in didn't understand why she had to hurt the fish at first, and she displayed remarkable lack of reluctance about misery than her character suggests. Other than that, great story. Nice twist and the right amounts of quirkiness. Keep it up!

Reply

Johanna J
19:15 May 19, 2020

Thank you for the feedback!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
18:34 May 26, 2020

I really loved this magical land I was transported into. Your story was really nice and I enjoyed it! About the confusing dialogue, I think I was able to navigate myself around it, though I had to read it countless times. Also, in your bio, you said you consider yourself a kid. May I ask how old you are?

Reply

Johanna J
18:54 May 26, 2020

I'm 12 years old:) Thanks for reading!

Reply

19:03 May 26, 2020

Wow! And you write really well- that's good. I'm still in my teens, though, but you could check out my stories. Also, you're welcome. Happy writing :)

Reply

Johanna J
19:35 May 26, 2020

I'll definitely check your stories out!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
11:39 May 26, 2020

Thanks so much! He will really appreciate that! Stay safe.-Avery :)

Reply

Show 0 replies
Tim Law
07:35 May 24, 2020

I love how much goes wrong in this story, for the fish, the sorceress, the scientist... Great twists, great story!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Hailey S.
14:39 May 22, 2020

Very interesting story! Great job! I agree with the points made in most of the other comments (about clarity and such) so I won't repeat them in my own words here, but otherwise I really enjoyed this. Keep writing!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Khadija S.
02:41 May 21, 2020

Here for the critique circle- Nice story! I like the name of the fish, and the crab/fish part. I would just suggest making the beginning a little clearer, as it is a bit confusing.

Reply

Show 0 replies
17:57 May 20, 2020

Hi Johanna, this story was very interesting, and it kept me very engaged!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Tvisha Yerra
15:29 May 20, 2020

Love the story! But, I got a bit confused with the dialogue, I didn't understand who was speaking. Take this for example: "I guess I should name you little fella. How about Mr. Pointyfins?" And so the fish accepted a new life, a new look, and a new name, by gasping for air. I didn't know that Alice was speaking until I almost finished the story. Yes, having a little variety in your sentences is fine, but they need to make sense. Otherwise, great story!

Reply

Johanna J
15:32 May 20, 2020

Thank you so much!

Reply

Tvisha Yerra
15:48 May 20, 2020

Do you watch the reedsy live events? Sorry for the randomness...

Reply

Johanna J
17:14 May 20, 2020

Yes, sometimes.

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
Show 1 reply
08:29 May 17, 2020

A tremendously engaging story. Although I would point out that the dialogues started confusing me a tad as I wasn't sure who was speaking them. But overall, loved the story.

Reply

Show 0 replies
A. y. R
10:11 May 16, 2020

The story is full of weird twists and turns, had no idea what to expect on the next paragraph as I was reading - really kept me engaged!

Reply

Johanna J
10:33 May 16, 2020

Thank you!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply