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Authors: Gillian Shields

Scarlett's New Friend

BOOK: Scarlett's New Friend
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Searlett's New Friend

Gillian shields

illustrated by Helen turner

Contents

Cover

Title Page

Dedication

Epigraph

Map of Oceania

Prologue

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Mermaid Sisters of the Sea

Imprint

For Lois

This book is for my big sisters
Kathleen and Angela, who are
the inspiration for so many
characters yet to be drawn!

Map of Oceania

Prologue

Meet Misty, Ellie, Sophie, Holly,
Lucy, and Scarlett. They are Mermaid
Sisters of the Sea, who live in the
magical underwater world of Coral
Kingdom. The Merfolk and their
wise ruler, Queen Neptuna, look
after the sea and all its creatures.

Coral Kingdom is protected by six

powerful magic crystals, which give

life and strength to the Merfolk.

Without the crystals, Coral

Kingdom would not survive.

Every year, the old crystals fade

and have to be replaced. Queen

Neptuna sends Misty and her

friends—six special mermaids who

are pure of heart—to collect the new

ones from the secret Crystal Cave.

But as they are bringing the crystals

home, a storm blows the mermaids

completely off course.

This is no ordinary storm! It is

created by Mantora, Queen

Neptuna's jealous sister. Mantora

wanted to rule Coral Kingdom,

and now she is bitter and full of

hatred. She is determined to stop

the mermaids from returning

home, so that she can overthrow

Queen Neptuna and set up her

evil Storm Kingdom instead.

Luckily, the young mermaids

have courage and friendship on

their side. But that's not all; their

S.O.S. Kits will help them as they

race to get the crystals back

safely. And they never forget

their Mermaid Pledge:

We promise that we'll take good care

   Of all sea creatures everywhere.

We'll never hurt and never break,

 We'll always give and never take.

And as we fight Mantora's threat,

 This saying we must not forget:

“I'll help you and you'll help me,

 For we are Sisters of the Sea!”

Scarlett and her friends are

eager to prove that Queen Neptuna

was right to trust them with the

precious crystals. They are going

to do everything it takes to get

them home and safeguard Coral

Kingdom for another year.

Will Mantora win? Or can the

mermaids get the new crystals back

in time to stop the light fading

forever from Coral Kingdom?

Chapter One

Scarlett sped tirelessly through the deep blue water, rippling her spangled crimson tail like a length of red silk. Her long hair streamed out behind her as she dashed along. She and the other mermaids—Misty, Ellie, Sophie, Holly, and Lucy—had been swimming in the fast currents under the sea since the break of day. Every hour that passed brought them closer to home.

“Scarlett,” called her friend Sophie, who was just behind her, “could you please swim up to the surface? Have a good look around and see if you recognize where we are.”

“All right,” replied Scarlett. She was pleased to be asked. At the start of the mermaids' adventures, Scarlett had been a little bit bossy. Now she was learning to work as a team with her Sisters of the Sea.

“Why don't you all rest here for a moment?” she said to the others. “I'll come back right away and tell you what I can see.”

The brave young Crystal Keepers had spent the day before searching for long-lost treasure on an ancient shipwreck. Since then, apart from a few hours' rest in the
night, the mermaids had been racing against time to take the magic crystals back to Coral Kingdom.

“We've still got today and until sunset tomorrow to reach home,” thought Scarlett, as she surged upward to the sunlit surface. “We might just make it—unless Mantora is planning another nasty surprise to stop us from getting there.”

The determined young mermaid cautiously peeped over the waves and looked around carefully. It was a nice, breezy morning.

“I think I've seen that island over there before,” she thought to herself. “Perhaps that means we're not too far from Coral Kingdom.”

Scarlett shaded her eyes and looked across the dancing waves. A large, green island rose ahead of her. She could make out rocky coves and cliffs and beaches. Human houses clustered round a little harbor. Brightly colored boats were dotted on the sea around the island. A few other smaller islands lay to the North.

“Of course!” she exclaimed to herself. “Wait until I tell the others!”

She leaped for joy above the sparkling sea, her tail glinting like a red flame in the sunlight. Then she plunged beneath the water, to where her friends were waiting just under the waves.

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