Panda wandered through the trees, her blue eyes taking in the lush landscape around her. It wasn't anything compared to the cool blue waters of the Pacific, but it seemed to have a hidden, almost magical, quality to it. It was a place separate from society and the pressure that came with being human, er-half human at least. Panda liked to come here every once in a while, when she needed to escape reality for a little while. It was nice to be able to come here and just lose herself in nature and its pleasant beauty. And since she couldn't go to the sea as often because of the stupid Thera kingdom banning them from living their lives in the water where they belonged, this was the second best place. Her foot steps echoed through the forest, the place coming alive with sound. She could hear the cries of the birds up in the trees over her head and the scamper of wild rabbits hopping on the forests mossy ground. She breathed in the wet air, sweet with the scent of hundred year old trees and bushes. Her feet lead her across an old train track, abandoned in the forest with moss grown over it.Panda's heart thumped as she remembered the first time she had ever visited this forest. It had been nearly 60 years since then, but some things would never change. It was her father who had first taken her here, shown her the wonder that came with being so secluded in such a magical place. He would take her here, just the two of them, and they would sing together in the forest, with only the woodland creatures to hear them. Her father was one of the best sirens in the kingdom, a trait he had handed down to his daughter. Only, when Panda's father died, so did her will to sing. Why should she still be able to sing when he could not? It wasn't fair, but that was a lesson she had learned from a very young age. Life was not fair, it was simply life.Panda could feel her throat ache to release the song that was building up inside of her. It ached to release those notes she had been avoiding ever since her fathers tragic death. The woods around her almost begged for her to serenade them again, like she had done when she was little and still held the innocence of one who had not witnessed death yet. Only, Panda wasn't that same naive little girl, she knew the hardships that came with living on this earth, she understood that everything was tainted with poison, nothing could ever truly be good and free.And for the first time in nearly 60 years, Panda sang. At first, the notes were wobbly from being so unused, but they slowly grew stronger until she was belting out the cords. Her voice crescendoed into a high note before lowering an octave. She sang to the trees and the birds surrounding her, her fiery red hair glowing in the light that filtered through the trees. She sang and sang and sang. Her heart filled with memories of her dead father and brother, and she sang to them too. Her song charged with grief and guilt, that they were now dead while her mother and her still walked the earth. Panda was oblivious to her surroundings, lost in her own voice.
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