Prologue: Meet Jackie Frost
“Jack Frost nipping at your nose,” I lightly sang walking down the sidewalk. The wind picked up and I zipped my jacket up until it reached my neck. Winter was turning out to be brutal with all of the wind lately. The past few days the temperature had fluctuated between people being able to wear shorts to days where it felt like it was the tundra. Today was one of those days. Unfortunately, even with all the wind there still wasn’t any snow. The weather had only produced rain which collected in puddles on the uneven parts of the sidewalk. Mud was everywhere you went. I’d rather have some of the nice fluffy stuff. Unlike most people I enjoyed winter in all its glory.
Cold temperatures never seemed to really bother me. I would be perfectly fine without my coat but I would’ve been yelled at by Mema for not wearing one. Snow made everything look pretty and peaceful. People around here always complained about how they had to shovel snow and how it messed up the roads. Those same people were now the ones bitching about all this rain. Will they make up their minds already?
“Where’s Jack Frost when you need him?” A small chuckle escaped my lips as I thought back to the movie I’d went and seen recently with Mema, Rise of the Guardians. Just thinking about it gave me a warm fuzzy feeling and I’m sure a tiny smile was on my normally neutral face. That movie had rocked and I couldn’t wait for it to come out on DVD. I would’ve asked for it for Christmas but since it was still in theaters I didn’t see it happening. Then again, I could ask for it on my birthday which wasn’t too far away.
I took a left and headed down the road for the tracks. It wasn’t the fastest route home but I did like the scenery. Even with the trees bare the countryside was a pleasant contrast to my busy school and town. Besides, with no leaves to block the view I could see for miles.
As I kept walking I thought back to the overall plot. I felt horrible for Jack when he wasn’t believed in, as well as the other guardians. My favorite being Bunnymund. It made me remember my own childhood and the happy memories I had of waiting up trying to hear Santa or catch the Toothfairy. Seeing as I was currently eighteen, soon to be nineteen, my days of believing were over.
My smile disappeared as I felt my heart sink a bit. Although I had believed in Santa and the Easter Bunny long after my peers had written them off the magic was over. What upset me the most was all of my classmates, at the time, weren’t sad in the slightest when they learned the truth. I was heartbroken when I was told. The only conciliation I got was from Mema. She had been horrified when my mom told me they didn’t exist. Mema said I was too young for the magic to be gone.
Guess that’s why I’m so much closer to her than anyone else. She enjoyed the wonder and splendor as much as I had. Even though she’s older she never did lose her ‘young at heart’ attitude. That’s why she went and saw the movie with me. My so called ‘friends’ wouldn’t be caught dead seeing a ‘kid movie’ as they put it. And even if they had the time my folks never seemed into what I liked. I remember when I was younger they didn’t really sit down and watch my movies with me. But Mema never missed one.
At that moment a gust of wind caught my hood and blew it up over my head. I would’ve left it there but sometimes it’s hard to see past it. The wind didn’t bother me too much but I picked up the pace because I knew it would be getting dark soon. I nearly giggled thinking about the Man in the Moon and how, ironically, it was supposed to be a full moon tonight. A small frightened voice pulled me out of my thoughts. “Emily!”
Strangely, I felt weightless and there was some sort of light trying to come through my eyelids. With some effort I slowly opened them and noticed I was gazing up into the night sky. The moon illuminated the entire sky and stars twinkled all around it. It seemed a little off because I never remembered the moon being that close or nearly bright before. Something cold touched my check and I was startled to realize it was snowing. Why am I lying down? What happened?
I sat up and was surprised to find I had been lying in a mound full of snow. How did it snow so much? Wasn’t it getting dark a second ago? At the realization it was already dark made I began to panic. Mema was going to be so worried. As I sprung up I found I no longer felt the weight of my backpack. Oh crap. Frantically I looked around. My whole life, including my wallet, was in that thing. My fear ebbed when I spotted it a few feet away. When I picked it up I noticed it was considerably lighter but when I checked everything was in it. Nothing was missing. Oh well. I didn’t have time to worry about this, I had to get home.
However, when I peered in the moonlight for the tracks they were nowhere to be found. Could this night get any weirder? With a heavy sigh I decided to try and make a circular pattern figuring the tracks couldn’t be too far away. This continued for twenty minutes and I was becoming beyond freaked. First, I woke up after what must’ve been hours for it to be this dark out. How the hell did that happen? Last thing I remember I was walking in daylight. Second, where was I exactly? I’d been right next to the railroad tracks not ten minutes from my own house. Third, was the least worrying and more an observation. How long had it been snowing? A decent amount blanketed everything and it was continuing to flutter down. It kind of confirmed my suspicion I had been out of it for a couple hours. Guess I should be more upset by how cold it had gotten out. But it wasn’t as freezing as one would think it to be. Maybe my coat was better than I gave it credit. If anything all of the falling snow was helping to calm my nerves.
It was amazingly peaceful listening to the crunching sound as I trudged on. The moonlight glinted off the freshly falling flakes and made them nearly sparkle in the darkness. If this entire situation wasn’t something out of the Twilight Zone I probably would’ve been able to properly appreciate the moment. The moonlight actually seemed to light the way and I noticed a clearing. “Nothing else is working right now,” I admitted following the illuminated path. The clearing turned out to be a frozen pond. What the? There are no ponds in my town or around it. We have a couple streams but that’s it. I’m not sure how but I’m not in Kansas anymore.
Movement caught my eye and I saw a figure at the opposite side of the pond. Whoever it was had their back to me. All I could tell from this distance was they were wearing blue and pants which did not look appropriate enough for this type of weather. Were they holding a stick? My feeling of relief over having found another person completely overrode the fact it was odd someone was out in the middle of what appeared to be a forest playing around with a giant stick. Seeing as I was meandering about at whatever time this is I was in no position to judge.
“Hello!” I called out. The figure turned around and I nearly whizzed in my own pants. Pale, white skin and hair, no shoes, a blue hoody, a tall wooden staff, and the brightest and bluest eyes I had ever seen. Either I was looking at the greatest cosplayer in the history of the world… Or I was staring at the one and only Jack Frost.
He hadn’t been planning on someone being at the pond besides himself. During the day only a handful of seniors or kids ever hung about. But no one ever stuck around past sunset. So it was surprising when he heard a voice call out at this time of night. He turned to see a lone figure across the pond. Even from where he stood he could clearly see the outline was female. She was about five three with ling brown hair that fell out from under her hood. Her clothes consisted of ripped jeans, black converse, and a green camouflage jacket with fake grey fur trimming the edges. Her clothes conveyed she may have been a little pudgy but it seemed to make her appear ‘cute’, not a term he used often, instead of unattractive like most people these days seemed to think they were if they weren’t as skinny as sticks. She also wore a matching shoulder bag. It was a little odd her eyes almost appeared to glow a mice aquamarine contrasting her chibi, as he had heard described before, face and the white snow fluttering past her. It almost appeared as though she had one of those faces where you could only guess her age. For all he knew she could have been fifteen or twenty years old.
If he didn’t know better he could have sworn she was looking right at him. But he wasn’t going to get his hopes up so soon. She could easily been peering through him, it wouldn’t have been the first time something like that had happened. Plus, someone her age wouldn’t believe in the main players, let alone him. But something about her eyes had him almost on edge. They seemed to be boring right into him.
What is going on? That is definitely Jack Frost. Or maybe I’m insane. I don’t know. Did I hit my head and now I’m hallucinating a fictional character from a movie I’ve seen recently? But then what explains the pond and everything else?
He was staring back at me and I felt a little flustered. What do you say in this type of situation? ‘Hi are you a figment of my imagination or are you real?’ That would be so rude. Rather awkwardly I raised my hand and waved at him. I put on the friendliest smile I could create and said, “Hi there.”
Did she just say hi to him? He glanced behind him to check if someone was there but there was no one in sight. Could this mean?
He looked behind himself and I realized he must’ve thought I couldn’t see him and was talking to someone else. Wait… That’s right. No one had been able to see him in over three hundred years in the movie. Either this hallucination was extremely detailed or it was actually happening. Whatever the case I had to let him know I could see him. “You with the staff!” I called. “Hello!”
Like a bullet he shot across the frozen pond and stopped a couple feet in front of me. It startled me a bit but I kept my smile on as I greeted him.
“Are you talking to me?” he incredulously asked. Poor kid.
“Why not?” I replied.
“Are you saying you can actually see me?”
“No duh. Did you think I was talking to myself?” I tried to joke.
“B-but no one has… And you…” He stammered floating right in front of me. I figured he must be happy he met someone who can finally interact with him. More importantly, believed in him.
“I can’t believe how lucky I am,” I beamed. “You’re Jack Frost!” I was ecstatic being able to meet one of my favorite characters in real life.
“You said my name,” he stated. A smile formed on his own face and he got exceedingly close, invading my personal bubble. Considering he had been alone for so long I gave him a break and fought the urge to punch him in the face. “You believe in me,” he nearly whispered after a few seconds.
“I sure do, and it’s a pleasure meeting you, Jack Frost,” I purposefully said his name again as I held out my hand.
“It’s a pleasure meeting you,” he slowly took my hand and gripped it. It was like he was afraid after everything he would still phase through me or I’d vanish and leave him alone again. We shook hands and I noticed how cold his skin temperature was. “Sorry but who are you exactly?” He hadn’t let go of my hand yet but seeing as I was the only human contact he’d had in so long I let him be and ignored my hand tingling as it started going numb.
“Jackie,” I answered. “Jackie Frost.”