Chapter 1- Chosen
“Jack!” North’s irritated voice sounded, echoing loudly through the Pole. The white-haired spirit bounded through the workshop playfully, freezing anything he came across. Toys, elves; you name it, he froze it.
He raced into yet another room, only to be grabbed by his hood and lifted off the ground by a yeti. He struggled but couldn’t get free. He waved his staff blindly behind him, making contact with something. Given the small screech and what happened next, Jack assumed he must have hit the yeti’s face. He felt something furry grip his ankle tightly. Next thing he knew, he was hanging upside-down.
He saw North walk into the room towards him. His arms were folded across his chest; his facial expression clearly showing that he was not impressed. Jack smiled innocently.
“Uh, hi North” he greeted him, as if nothing were wrong. North didn’t respond. Instead, he continued to stare down at him.
“What’s up?” Jack asked, despite his awkward position. He shifted somewhat uncomfortably. North couldn’t help but smile. He adored the boy, regardless of the trouble he caused. It was one of the reasons he had offered to Jack to stay at the Pole, seeing as though he had nowhere else to go. Jack definitely appreciated having a home, even if it was only temporary.
North gestured his hands, indicating to the yeti to release him. The yeti dropped him instantly. Jack didn’t have time to catch himself and landed, what looked to be harshly, headfirst. He pulled himself up though, casting a glare in the direction of his captor. He kicked up his staff from the floor to his hand, holding it in the direction of the yeti, who in returned, loomed over him. North intervened before anything further happened.
“Enough” he said, pushing them away from each other. He turned to Jack.
“Jack, the others are waiting.” Jack didn’t seem too interested at all in hearing this. He walked away, his staff over his shoulder.
“Yeah, yeah; I know.” North took a large stride forward, grabbing the boy’s shoulder firmly.
“Now, Jack.” Jack sighed, rolling his eyes. But he didn’t argue.
“What’s this about anyway? Not like it’s a big deal” Jack remarked as he followed North to where the others were waiting for them on the other side of the Globe. North looked at him in surprise.
“Big deal? Jack, this is big deal! Man in Moon is choosing new guardian.” Jack’s attitude towards the situation didn’t shift.
“So? It’s a big deal for whoever he chooses then, not for us.” North sighed deeply. He knew Jack still had much to learn about being a guardian.
Their conversation was cut short when they reached the others. Bunny hoped over to them. He looked to North, not even greeting Jack.
“Bout time mate” he said, not even trying to hide the annoyance in his voice. North’s eyes flickered between him and the young guardian that stood beside him. Bunny understood, giving North an ’I told you so’ look.
Despite the two of them having made a truce, Bunny still didn’t trust Jack completely. Jack didn’t exactly help by continuing his share of taunting in their petty quarrel. Sandy glided over, breaking the tension and reminding them of the situation, by forming a moon crescent above his head in Dreamsand.
North nodded. “Good point, Sandy. Man in Moon is waiting.” They four of them walked over to Tooth, who was already waiting above the guardian tile on the floor.
Baby Tooth flew over to Jack from where she was beside Tooth. Jack greeted her warmly, smiling and touching her cheek with his finger.
The other guardians waited in silence as the moonlight shone down onto the tile, waiting anxiously as the crystal rose from the ground. The blue light released by the gemstone started to cloud together, forming the shape of the new guardian.
Finally, the image was complete. A smile graced Bunny’s lips when he saw it; North looked taken aback. Tooth seemed nervous at Man in Moon’s choice, while Sandy’s expression remained unreadable. Jack, on the other hand, was outraged.
“What?!” he shouted. “You’ve gotta be kidding me!” His reaction made Bunny’s smile grow larger. Tooth flew over to Jack’s side, trying to calm him.
“Jack, calm down” she murmured in a gentle voice. Jack clenched his teeth together but let his fists loosen.
“I don’t care if Pitch has returned. I am not working with her” he snarled.
“Oh good. Now you know how I felt when you were chosen” Bunny retorted. Jack glared at him but his gaze moved onto that of the Moon’s choice. His blue eyes were filled with a hatred that none of the guardians had ever seen before. Sandy tapped on North’s leg, gaining his attention. Multiple images appeared above his head, of the moon, a snowflake, and what looked to be fireworks but with a massive explosion. North understood the message. He stepped forward, facing Bunny.
“Bunny, you will go collect her” he decided. Bunny nodded, still smiling. Jack stepped forward, much to everyone’s surprise.
“No.” He spoke fiercely. “I’ll get her.” Unsure glances were exchanged throughout the room.
“Jack, I don’t think that’s such a good idea” Tooth said uneasily.
“If she’s going to be a guardian, she’ll have to accept the fact that I’m one too.”
Whilst they were still uncertain, the guardians knew that Jack did make a good point. This new guardian would have to make their peace with Jack sooner or later, and due to the lack of time they had before Pitch’s strength was fully recovered, sooner was the ideal choice.
“Alright” North decided. “Jack, you will bring her here. I’ll send some yetis to assist you.” Jack nodded. Although he looked less tense, there was still a certain ferocity being reflected in his eyes. The rest of the guardians all felt it; one way or another, something was going to go wrong.
Once Jack was gone, Bunny looked up at the moonlight image being projected. A young girl with unkempt hair, standing defensively with one hand shoved in the pocket of her torn pants, the other holding a dagger.
He wasn’t glad she had been chosen; he was overjoyed.