The children often spent long summer days on this lagoon, swimming or floating most of the time, playing the mermaid games in the water, and so forth.
You must not think from this that the mermaids were on friendly terms with them: on the contrary, it was among Wendy’s lasting regrets that all the times she was on the island she never had a civil word from one of them.
When she stole softly to the edge of the lagoon she might see them by the score, especially on Marooners’ Rock, where they loved to bask, combing out their hair in a lazy way that quite irritated her; or she might even swim, on tiptoe as it were, to within a yard of them, but then they saw her and dived, probably splashing her with their tails, not by accident, but intentionally.
- Peter & Wendy, by J.M. Barrie