The Sea King's Daughter
by Daniel Lizzama
A poor but gifted musician draws the attention of the King of the Sea, who invites him to visit his palace under the sea. The ruler then becomes so taken with the young man's music that he insists Sadko stay and marry one of his daughters. The Sea Queen, however, whispers to Sadko that if he kisses or embraces his sea-wife, he will never be able to return home again. That evening he lies next to his bride, the Princess Volkhova, but never touches her. The next morning he awakes beside the River Volkhov in his beloved city of Novgorod. He becomes a rich merchant, marries, and raises a family, but whenever he plays his music near the river, he thinks he sees the Princess Volkhova raising her head out of the water to listen.