As she had hoped, the soldiers followed the stream she had sniffed out. Apparently, they were following the trail TOOO's friends had taken towards the mountains. Now, she just had to find some way to warn them, too. The stream was just deep enough to swim through, if she could get to it.
The two soldiers carrying her laid down the blanket she rode in, battling the motion sickness that went with their makeshift transport. They had intentionally set her down on the side of their camp away from the stream.
As the sun began to set, one of the four brought her food on whatever passed for a plate among them. "What's this?" she asked.
"It's your supper!" he growled. "The Captain doesn't want you to starve before we reach home."
She looked down at the offering. "I can't eat that!"
"Why not? Our food not good enough for you?"
"Look at me!" the mermaid told him. "I'm a creature of the sea, in case you hadn't noticed! What do you think I eat?!"
He threw up his hands. "Fine! I'll go and see if I can catch you a fish."
"Huh!" she muttered. "I'll probably starve before you catch anything."
"You think you can do better?"
"Of course I can! I live in the sea!"
"That's it!" he announced, wrapping the blanket around her tail and dragging her through the grasses. Then, he whipped out the blanket from under her, causing her to tumble into the stream. "Go catch your own dinner, then!" He stormed back to the others.
Ten minutes later…
The Captain saw the empty blanket. "Where's the girl? Where's the mermaid?"
The soldier looked up from his own meal. "She told me she couldn't eat our rations, so I got fed up with her insults and threw her in the stream, and told her to catch her own dinner."