A Rise of the Guardians Fanfiction
You took a deep breath of sharp, fresh air as you continued, only half-energetically, to hike up the snow-covered hill. You supposed you couldn’t quite call it a mountain, as it wasn’t even 100 feet tall; but it was dangerously steep, and the gravelly paths were ice-crusted at the edges. Even for a hill, it was exciting enough to count as one during the winter—each moment guaranteed danger, thrill, and the bitter taste of the cold on your tongue.
Hiking on a winter’s day like this—your parents thought you must have been going insane, but of course they didn’t understand. They weren’t quite so fond of the winter as you were: for them, winter meant having to shovel out the driveway, more accidents and tripping in the ice, and more trouble and stress. That’s how adults were.
But for you, winter meant snow.
Snow. It was such a beautiful thing, to wake up one morning and find that the first snow of winter had arrived—to watch the lovely flakes falling past the window, to press your nose against the glass so that it might have seemed that you were able to touch the finely pointed edges of the snowflakes with the very tip of your nose.
And then there was going outside; although you were likely to get frostbite if you went outside without dressing appropriately, you didn’t want to dress up into all those thick layers and stiff, woolen mittens. With those coarse mittens on, you could never feel the snow naturally in your hands.
No—you liked it when you were allowed to run outside in your pajamas, and you didn’t even care if the neighbors spotted you in even the most absurd set of clothes you had (for example, that pink and black polka-dotted set of silk pajamas you had in the back of your closet).
It was all for the better; scooping up the wet, white snow in your hands and feeling the cold of it between your fingers was almost sublime, almost magical in a way you couldn’t describe.
To lie in the snow was better than inside the house, where it was overly dry and heated. You liked it where you could feel the wetness of the substance against your back and head, to lie in the midst of the falling snow and feel the small, solid drops caress your face as they fell.
You loved winter more than anything else—oh well, summer wouldn’t kill you, even in the immense heat, and spring brought Easter… that was true. Fall was cool enough for your liking, of course. Each season had an incredible element of its own, sometimes hidden somewhere you couldn’t find it easily (you swore that during the Easter egg hunt, you’d seen an egg try to walk off deeper into the bushes of its own accord), but it was always there, somewhere.
But winter meant snow, and snow meant more fun, and so you had long ago deemed winter as your favourite season.
There was much more to do during winter than anytime else—you could have snowball fights, make snow angels, and snowmen. Best of all was hiking up the hill in your area; it was an activity that kept you warm enough so that your parents would allow you to pursue it without wearing all the ludicrous layers of sweaters that your mother forced your dad into.
It seemed that there was nothing better to do, anyways. Your friends had all gone off to the movies, where it was ridiculously warm and toasty, and playing in the snow by yourself had bored you after a while. As you took another exhausting step up towards the top of the hill, you gave a dull sigh, wondering what you were thinking, going up on a day like this.
“Damn… it’s too hot…” The climb was excessively tiring, and usually you hiked on the colder winter days, but today, more than half the snow in your area had melted, which made the ascent more slippery. The heat had also decided to hit you suddenly—the sun was shining, and the sky was less grey than usual.
As you grabbed onto a piece of rock on the wall of the side of the hill you were climbing for support, you decided that you couldn’t go on much longer.
“I-I need a break…” And gasping with exhaustion, you went right to the side of the path and sat right down in the melted snow.
Almost immediately you regretted your decision—the snow had undergone a great change between solid and liquid, and water had seeped right through your pants. Gritting your teeth in frustration, you gave a last groan of surrender.
“Damn it—I give up!” Your voice resounded through the air, bouncing off of the sides of the hill and echoing in your ears, giving you more of a headache than before. Panting, you wiped the sweat off of your eyebrows.
Now was the time to vent out your anger in regards to the heat—but to what? The snow? No, you couldn’t blame the snow… who else was there to blame? The hill? Your mum and dad? No… but there had to be someone else besides yourself to go all-out on…
Thinking as you walked along towards the foot of the hill, you rifled through your mind, trying to stumble across a name that would pop into your head and present itself to you as an opportunity for potential target practice.
And suddenly, you found your foot slipping under you, the weight of your body falling through the air—and then you had fallen onto the hard and rocky path, the momentum of your fall making your back and buttocks ache.
As the gravel skidded away from beneath you, your mind aching, you felt a surge of frustration bursting into your mind, and without any moment to waste, you shouted curses at the first name that stood out in your mind…
“Damn you, Jack Frost!”
Whoa. That was definitely going overboard—screaming at a person that you weren’t even sure really existed. But the moment you screamed out your anger at him, you were immediately aware of a lot of reasons you could rant at this so-called Jack Frost for…
... For instance, how you were nearly buried by an immense pile of snow that had apparently fallen on you from the branches of a tree while you sat beneath it, reading a book… how your window had become nearly opaque because of the overwhelming amount of frost that had frozen across its glass surface…
“Damn you, Jack! Making all these things happen!” You could swear that your neighbors, fifty feet below and five blocks away from you, were slamming their shutters closed. “F-For making me fall on my”—for lack of a better word—“buttocks, for nearly burying me under a pile of snow, for all this crap that’s been happening to me! It’s not very nice either, making all the snow melt even before mid-Janua—”
But at that moment, your world was flopped inside-out and upside-down; for before you, as you were halfway through the word “January”, a boy had appeared before you completely out of thin air (although you could’ve sworn that you’d seen a swirl of bright snow where he stood a moment before).
He was dressed in a dark navy blue hoodie, which was sprinkled across with patterns and streaks that resembled the colour and look that matched exactly that of the frost’s, and brown pants that hardly reached halfway down his shins—he was about your age, a very handsome boy indeed.
His stark white, silvery hair seemed almost to glow with an ethereal light, and his smooth skin was nearly as pale as his hair. Clutched in his right hand was a tall, gnarled wooden staff that was curved and hooked at the top end and looked as if the boy had snapped it right off a tree—and that was probably what he had done, you admitted as you observed the deep swirls and curves of the branch.
After a moment more of examining the stick, you could see that it too appeared to be sprinkled with frost.
In the boy’s presence, you suddenly felt slightly chilled, as if the temperature had gone down several degrees at his materialization. The sun immediately dipped below cool, grey clouds again, and the snow seemed to grow more solid and cold.
Not to mention that the water against your buttocks suddenly seemed to freeze the backside of your pants along with your skin.
But what really made your eyes widen and caused you to stare in disbelief was not the other kid’s outfit, his staff, or his mischievous, smirking face—nor was it the fact that everything, including your soaked pants, seemed to grow more cold and frozen at his appearance.
It was the fact that he was standing in midair, only feet away from you, looking as if he was held up by nothingness. Such a thing, of course, was scientifically impossible; you were more likely to find out that the cooties did, in fact, exist before scientists could find out how to make strange-looking boys appear out of the air and float two feet above the ground.
And yet he was standing right there, floating before you, looking as if this was something done every day.
“That isn’t very nice now,” said the boy, who, far from looking offended, looked amused. “Shouting at me like that? Right after I melted all the snow a bit so that you wouldn’t have such a hard time climbing up while slipping on the ice.”
There was something about that statement that felt perfectly normal, and yet there was something strange and unnatural in its words. After a moment of sifting through his sentences, you came to the realization that he had said that he had melted the snow.
“M-Melted the snow?” you repeated incredulously. “With what? A hairdryer?” you asked, not able to think up of anything more intelligent to say—before you realised that half the snow in your town had melted in the course of less than thirty minutes. And where was the science in that?
There was no way anyone could have melted all that snow in such a short time… with a hairdryer, of all things.
The boy, whom you realised was a complete stranger to you, gave a startling laugh that further chilled you, and the wind picked up instantaneously, whistling in your ear as the white-haired boy threw his head back, laughing bemusedly. The moment he stopped chuckling, however, the air became frighteningly still, as if it was his laugh that had started up the wind.
“With a hairdryer? (Name), do you really think that anyone could clean out half the city’s snow with a hairdryer? Or that anyone alone could melt all that ice and snow?”
He grinned slyly, as if he had a secret to hide that you couldn’t find—and he was very correct. You had no idea what he was thinking. But rather than assuming this unknown boy to be dangerous or strange (most people would have labeled him delusional), you felt curious. Emanating from him was a feeling, an aura of a whisper of the past, something mythical and amazing… you wanted to know what that feeling was, the feeling that made your spine tingle with thrilling excitement.
“W-Well, no,” you stammered, somewhat at a loss for words. This child struck you in an odd way—there was something going on here, something not normal, yet magical. “B-But didn’t you say… th-that you melted all the snow?”
“Heh…” Much to your amazement, the boy chuckled, and without a warning, did a flip in midair, his staff still clutched in his hand, looking as if he was being blown about by the wind. When he had come eye-to-eye with you again, he was so close to you that your noses could have touched; he winked at you and grinned. “You’re a sharp one, huh?”
Quickly, you backed away a couple of steps, nearly slipping in the snow again. Whatever that aura was, it had gotten stronger the moment he had come face-to-face with you… and you were filled with a strong desire to know this boy’s name, as if that knowledge would explain everything about him—his strange clothing, his laugh, how he floated in the air so easily.
And as if he had read your mind, the boy smirked widely again, his stormy grey eyes glinting, and said: “My name is Jack. You know—damned Jack Frost. The one who’s been ‘making all these things happen’ and… let me think, what else… made you ‘fall on’ your ‘buttocks’. That ring a bell?”
For a moment, you stood, staring at Jack with wide eyes, not even registering that he had unnecessarily quoted one of your most unintelligent lines. So... so this, as you had thought, explained it all… the white hair, the streaks of white across his sweatshirt and the knees of his pants… the aura that ebbed off of him… and his floating…
It was too much to take in all at once, and for a moment, you didn’t dare believe it—but when you glanced at his feet, which were levitated two feet off of the ground now, you felt like fainting. And when it registered that his feet were bare, completely bare, and that he wasn’t even wearing any shoes in this awful weather, you were sure that the sun was fading before your eyes.
“O-Oh God…” You mumbled, your hand flying up to clap over your mouth as you tried to digest the fact that this boy was supposedly but definitely Jack Frost. “Y-You’re saying… that you’re J-Jack Frost? That he’s real?”
Another smile and a laugh, and his reply was: “Of course! You’ve probably heard of me before; but you’ve never seen me. Only those children who believe can see and hear me.”
At this, you pretended to have a coughing spasm just so you could turn to the side and look away from him, giving yourself some time to think. So this boy was the living legend of Jack Frost. It was hard to believe, really, but once the fact had sunk in, it seemed so much easier to just believe… to believe that Jack really was real, that he was here before you, of all people…
And then something else popped into your head, something that alarmed you.
“B-But how do you know my name?”
“Haha! You really want to know that, of all the things you could ask me? Yeah, okay, I’ll tell you—I’ve been watching you.” At seeing your partly horrified expression, he went on to say, casually, “Don’t freak out now, though, it’s not like I’ve been stalking you—”
You glared at Jack, and after a second’s worth of seeing this, he paused and reconsidered his words.
“Um… well, not exactly stalking, but—well, never mind that. I’ve just been watching you, because…” He stopped again, trying to think out how he could express his thoughts in a way that wouldn’t scare you off. “Well… because… I’ve seen you playing in the snow,” he finished blankly, with a look of such innocence and cluelessness that you had to laugh.
“Yeah? And what does that have to do with you watching me?” you demanded. “Why did you choose to sta—um, I mean, watch over me—and not another kid? Anyone can have some fun in the snow; why me?”
“Bu-But, well… I-I mean, it’s not like that!” protested Jack, and, out of anxiety, he was grasping his staff so tightly in his fists that you were almost afraid he would snap it right in half. His knuckles were whitening even more than they were to start out with from the force that he was gripping the wood. “It’s just… y-you see, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen… since I’ve seen someone who actually appreciates my work as much as you do. Usually… usually kids don’t take my work seriously… they think that all that ice and snow is just there, and they never take a moment to even notice me. That’s why no one’s seen me for ages… they didn’t believe.”
Well… maybe I’ve been a bit too harsh with him… asking all these questions… and all those years of not being seen by children… that must have been horribly lonely.
“Yeah, yeah…” you muttered under your breath before gaining the courage to actually speak more loudly. “Yeah, I… I really do appreciate it.”
Jack’s face seemed to brighten as he said, “Really? Huh… well, I guess you do have a lot of fun, so… My job as a Guardian would be done there…” You must have looked a bit confused, because he quickly explained, “You see… I’m the Guardian of Fun. You see, Guardians… we protect children—not just those who believe in us, but all those who have joy, hope, and happiness in their hearts. Depends on what you’re the Guardian of. You know, like… North—well, you don’t know that term—Santa, he’s the Guardian of Wonder… there’s also Sandman, Bunnymund… the Tooth Fairy, yeah… all of us are Guardians…”
“Wh-What?” You stared at him incredulously. “Santa? He’s real? The Sandman and the Tooth Fairy too? A-and who… who’s Bunnymund?”
“Oh, Bunnymund. That’s the Easter Bunny. They’re all real, of course.”
“B-But they’re just… just stories… made up t-to make kids happy… no?” You faltered at the bemused expression on Jack’s face.
“Well, obviously, you believe in me, otherwise you wouldn’t be able to see me,” he said.
That thought blasted you full in the face like a gust of wind. “E-Er… I-I don’t… Well,” you stated, trying to deny the obvious, “I-If you’re really d-damn Jack Frost… th-then why don’t you m-make all this damned snow come back then? It’s too hot to go h-hiking today, and in case you didn’t notice, m-my pants are wet because you decided t-to let all the snow melt!”
Jack shrugged. “Well, I thought it’d be better for you than slipping on all the ice on the mountain. Trust me, if I didn’t melt it all, you’d still be at the foot of the hill, trying to get up here without sliding back down.”
“Whatever! Just—just please make all this water freeze up so I don’t have to fall down on it…!”
“Hey—I’ve got a better idea to get you to the top of the hill—and prove my existence to you. C’mon!”
You let out something that was a tad bit like a screech as Jack grabbed your hand, and you felt an almost stinging cold enclosed around your fingers. With his other hand, he directed his staff directly onto the path before him, leading up the mountain.
Suddenly, as if by magic, there was a blue, glowing spark at the tip of the gnarled stick—and then a jet of frost and ice shot from the end of the branch, paving a thick layer of ice that was just wide enough for you to stand on the end of. Without thinking, you followed Jack as he moved forward a bit, still floating, and stepped so that both your feet rested on the surface of the icy path…
You had to congratulate yourself for suppressing the high-pitched, intense screaming that would have pierced the air if you hadn’t shut your mouth as Jack immediately shot forward, pulling you along as you stood with both feet still on the ice—you were sliding, actually gliding on the soles of your boots as Jack plunged forward and up the path, his hand tightly squeezing yours so that cold rippled through every vein in your body.
Higher and faster you went, gripping onto Jack’s hand as if it were a lifeline; you were sure you were going at almost 50 miles per hour, and once or twice you slipped a bit, nearly careening off the edge of the path and straight off the mountain, but with Jack holding onto you, you never fell.
The wind bit into your face, pulling every strand of hair loose from your face so that your hair flew behind you.
The ice continued to stream and shoot from the end of Jack’s staff, carving a never-ending road of ice into the hill’s trail.
The cold from Jack’s hand was turning your flesh red and making it throb; the cold was almost too much.
But you didn’t care.
As Jack began to slow, you realized that the two of you had reached the top of the hill at last, and you gazed down at the miniature houses and trees that was your town.
“Wow,” you breathed, not believing what had just happened. “That… that was fun…”
“Just like I expected it to be,” grinned Jack, his smile lighting up his pale and handsome face. “You believe in me now, don’t you?”
“… Y-Yeah…” You were gasping and panting from the exhilarating trip, but you didn’t care. “O-Of course I do… Hey... Jack.”
"Wh-Why'd you play all those tricks on me, anyways? You know... covering up my window in frost... dumping snow on my head..."
"Having a bit of fun, that's all." Jack grinned.
"... thank you." You sighed, a smile finally gracing your lips for the first time that day since leaving the house. "Thank you, Jack. For making me believe."
“Then…” Jack gave a small smirk now, his eyes instantly gleaming mischievously once more as he said: “So, why don’t I give you a parting gift? To congratulate you for truly believing?”
A parting gift? you wondered, finding these words strange and uncomforting. But whatever the gift was made you curious.
“Close your eyes,” ordered Jack, and you complied obediently, curious as to what Jack wanted to give you.
Suddenly, his lips were clamped upon yours. Jack smiled against your warm flesh as he gripped your shoulder with his free hand, his staff hand reaching around your waist to pull you closer to him.
It was like a wall of ice had suddenly pushed against your lips. It was cold, but in a sense, so hot and fiery that it was burning into you, delving deep into you and leaving imprints of its essence.
You squinted against the cold and hot sensation, and you would’ve resolved to open your eyes, but you found that you couldn’t—the feeling of it was dazzling, so amazing that you were content to shut your eyes and savour the moment.
But the kiss had a short duration; in the next second, Jack had pulled away, and you were left stunned and befuddled. His cold hand caressed your now swollen lips and brushed across your now white and cold face. Brushing a lock of hair behind your ear, he leaned in and murmured his last words to you…
And where Jack Frost once stood, there was nothing but a swirl of snowflakes and frost.
It was completely irrational—the idea of a boy, of a Jack Frost who controlled the snow and ice, was crazy. But you believed it, and deep inside, you were hoping that you would someday see him again.
“Believe…” You murmured to yourself, your finger running lightly across your lips, which felt as if they were burning now. “Believe.”
Then, directing your gaze to where the boy called Jack Frost once was, you said quietly: “I’ll always believe, Jack. Just promise me one thing… Don’t give me a reason not to believe. Help me know that you’re always there, okay? I mean… after all, it’s your fault that I’ve got frostbite now.”
All those memories of a boy when I was little. A boy in a blue sweatshirt, covered in frost. They weren’t dreams after all…?
And as you thought this, you felt a sudden coldness against your skin, as if an icy hand was tickling against your cheek. Assuring you that he was always there.
With only the mythical Guardian Jack Frost on your mind, you made your way home--you swore you could hear the faint echo of a boyish laugh resounding in the air as you walked home stiffly, cold, shivering, and… oh, yes.