We See England, We See Xanth, We See Mels's Underpanth In fact, Gwenny Goblin, Che Centaur and Jenny Elf are just about the only creatures on Xanth who have been spared the sight of Mela Merwoman's undergarment -- preoccupied as they are with helping Gwenny beat out her awful half-brother Gobble for chiefship of the goblin horde. But first they must master space and thyme . . . and find the fabulous egg that sits between the Roc and the hard place. While Mela -- who would gladly relinquish her oft-viewed undies for a new husband -- joins the Adult Conspiracy . . . and quickly discovers the power of a perfect pair of panties!
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September 01, 1992
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Excerpt from Xanth 15: The Color of Her Panties by Piers Anthony
Chapter One: Mela
Mela Merwoman swam restlessly around her sea cave garden, brushing the treelike seaweeds that formed the walls and canopy. Her hair swirled greenly behind her, and her flukes caused little eddies that toyed with whatever strands of hair they could catch.
She swooped down near the glowing colored stones of her floor, so that her breasts almost brushed them. . Then she halted at her central fireplace and stoked up the watedogs so that her fire blazed more brightly. "Oh, brimstone!- she swore, severely out of sorts. "I need a husband!"
She brought out her mirror and stretched the glass out to full length so she could see all of herself. it merely reflected what she already knew: she was a splendiferous creature, with fuller breasts than any mere mermaid and a flashier tail than any fish could boast. About her neck she wore a necklace supporting two precious glowing firewater opals , surely sufficient to attract the best quality husband.
So why wasn't she married? It wasn't as if she were choosy. All she wanted was the nicest, handsomest, most manly and intelligent unmarried prince in Xanth, who would be pleased to let her do anything she wanted. Such as swimming in the salt sea for hours and eating raw fish, and who would love to brush out her hair for her. Once she had captured Prince Dolph, but he had been a trifle young at the time, nine years old.. She had traded him off for her opals, and later he had grown up and married a girt of his own species whose endowments weren't nearly as impressive as Mela's own. Human men just didn't have much sense.
The problem was that there weren't many males who met her modest standards, and most of those were already married. She had scoured the seas and found nothing worth her while. So what was she to do?
She sighed, and the effort sent ripples down through her fabulous flesh. There was no help for it: she would have to go ask the Good Magician. That meant doing him a year's service, which would surely be a colossal bore, but if he landed her a. suitable husband it just might be worth it.
No time like the present. Mela gathered together the few useful spells she had collected during her explorations of the bypaths of the sea and tucked them into her invisible purse. Then she swam out of her cave and up toward the surface of the sea. She didn't worry about the fire spreading during her absence, because fire could not burn under water without the magic presence of the merfolk. Only if another merwoman or merman came would it flare up, and no one would intrude on her private premises.
Mela's undersea cave was near the Isle of Illusion, by sheerest coincidence, so she came up in sight of the isle which had once appeared to be the most illustrious of regions. Her hair yellowed as it broke the surface. She remembered again how she had captured Prince Dolph here, despite the objection of his skeletal companions Marrow Bones and Grace'l Ossein. They had in the end turned out to be decent folk despite their gauntness; indeed, they had helped her get her opals. She wondered how they were doing; they had made a nice if somewhat emaciated couple.