Introduced by the author, explaining the inspiration for the story and its ending note.

Essarala learned of the traders from her cousins' gossip, and she lingered near the interpreters, watching and wishing. She longed to explore their ship and ask them to take her with them to the stars. But the more she listened, the more she learned, and one thing became obvious: their ship might carry water for its crew to drink, but it didn't contain water for a mer to live in.

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Read “The Mermaid Astronaut” by Yoon Ha Lee, in Issue #298 – Science-Fantasy Month 5

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