“So, was I right? Was something blocking up the trout net?” Hank said as I resurfaced near the boat. “Yep,” I replied. “A bunch of trout. Don’t worry, though, I got them all out.”
I looked down and noticed the rope wrapped around my leg. “No wait!” I shouted out, but it was too late. Hank threw the anchor overboard, and a moment later I was in the water and sinking fast. As I opened my mouth to scream for help, saltwater rushed in and I began to choke. And even as I became overwhelmed with fear and pain, I had to admit – that was a pretty good prank Hank had just pulled.
When I awoke, I could see a beautiful woman looking down on me. My head filled with a million questions. Was she an angel? Did that mean I was dead? Why was she so beautiful? Was that rigor mortis in my pants, or something else?
The Colossus Lobster snapped me up and threw me into a giant tank with her other human captors. I pounded on the glass and begged to be let out, but the beast showed no mercy. Then, just as I was about to give up, the two lobsters I’d saved from the shark earlier came in and bought my freedom. “Thank you!” I called out to them as the Colossus Lobster pulled me from the tank. “Let me pay you back. How much did my freedom cost you?” “Market price,” I think I heard one call out as they scuttled over to a table for two, but what with all the creamy “freedom” sauce filling my ears, it was hard to tell.
“Well done, human,” Aquaria’s father said as he gazed upon the corpse of the Colossus Lobster. “Finally, my kingdom is at peace again. As promised, we will return you to the surface.” “Um, actually sir, there was something I was going to ask you,” I said as I gazed into Aquaria’s eyes. “I know our agreement was for me to get sent back to the surface, but, well, do you also think I could have that big pile of treasure, too?”
“Now we can be together forever!” Aquaria said with excitement. “Uh, maybe this wasn’t such a good idea,” I said as I watched her flop around on the beach like a fish out of water.
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