"He's just so… Argh! I can't stand it!" Nicky vented to Jack as she tried to get an art project for school done. Jack just chuckles. Nicky has a group of close friends in school who found her enthusiasm in the mythical and the odd. She also has a foe so to speak.
None other than the descendent of his former employer Alexandra Montagu. Though his name was Charles Blanc. He and his family lived in the mansion the men in his village had helped built.
"He can't help it if he's raised that way." Jack was trying his hand at peacekeeping.
His own experience with the Montagus taught him that sometimes what looked like a stuck up princess was actually a girl under a lot of pressure. Maybe this judgmental idiot was a boy afraid to take risks. He remembers that Charles grew up really fast. Dropping 'childish' things much earlier than most.
He wasn't going to tell that to Nicky though. That would most certainly be an invasion of the teenage boys privacy.
"Are you actually defending him? He's the least fun person in the world!" she argues.
"Which is exactly why I exist if you think about it. To bring fun to those who live without? Look at cupcake." Nicky frowns. It's true that Cupcake went from the loneliest girl in the entire town to a social butterfly.
"I suppose… But then what about him? He's sixteen and still like that."
Jack sighed. "Burges isn't the only town I bring snow to," he told her.
"Oh…" Nicky thought about that for a moment. Jack wasn't always here to bring fun to lonely children. Maybe he just hadn't been there when there would have been chances for Charles to join them when they were little.
Just bad luck.
"Nicky! Dinner!" her mother called from downstairs.
"Coming!" Nicky called back.
"Looks like I better get going," Jack concluded as he jumped out the window.
He hovered for a moment to shoot Nicky a parting smirk.
"Listen to your parents and eat your vegetables alright?" he winks.
Nicky snickers and waves him off as she closes the window and heads downstairs.
Jack dives in the first tree stump he sees. It was about time he paid Gale another visit, they had a game of battleship to finish.
When he came out he looked around.
"Up here!" Gale's voice came from the higher branches of the root tree. Jack looked up and saw his friend leaning against the trunk from one of his own personal favorite sitting branches.
"Hey, there you are. Really giving this, different point of view thing a try huh?"
Since spring started Gale has been more mobile than ever, though he still kept physical contact with the tree. Still it was an improvement. Jack glances at the spot where Gale's body had actually made a permanent dent in the trunk's structure.
Yes, definitely an improvement. Especially since this was the first time Gale had decided to climb and see the forest from up high.
"Are you stalling?" Gale mused. Jack chuckled and flew up to sit with him.
"I belief it was your move," Jack informs Gale.
"Don't you dare lose Jack, Wes and I have a bet going and I'll never hear the end of it if he beats me," Safia told Jack as she appeared, hovering by his side.
"Safia! Get back up here, no influencing the competitors!" Wes, now also having found a solid form as a young man, with Arabic features as opposed to Safia's rather Scandinavian appearance, appeared at Gale's side.
Safia rolled her eyes and vanished along with Wes.
"Do you think Ethan and Nora are going to bond with a seasonal too at some point?" Gale wondered aloud, trying not to think too much about the fact that both winds were apparently rooting for their respective friends from the sidelines.
"I don't know… I am kind of curious who they'd chose to bond with… E4?"
"Mis," Gale smirked.
Suddenly a shiver went through the tree.
"Something is wrong!" Gale exclaimed as he laid both his hands on the bark and listened closely.
"Something is attacking one of the trees arteries, Windspring island…"
"Yes," Jack agreed as he gently stroked the ancient creatures branch.
"It's going to be okay girl. I'll deal with it," He promised.
"But Jack! Don't you know what day it is?" Gale protests. Jack nodded. Of course he did. Jane had been dreading today for weeks. That's why she was at her castle instead of here to hang with them.
Today at noon the shadows worldwide would be at their smallest, and on the equator they would be totally gone. Which meant that today Jane's connection to her realm was at it's weakest.
That along with the fact that mother nature had warned him that today would be the hottest day of this year worldwide, meaning his powers would be weakened as well on top of the fact that his powers were already at a disadvantage in the tropical climate of the equator.
"Whatever it is, you'll be on your own."
"I can't come with you Jack!" Safia interrupted.
"None of the winds can. Wind spring island is where we were born. We started from one spot and raced to the four directions you now know us by. But our first start has created a windless island surrounded by an impenetrable barrier. No one can physically break through it, not even us. And we can't travel with the root tree. You'll be without even my currents to guide you," Safia explains.
Jack shrugs and looks to his shadow. If he was right, it would be almost noon on Windspring island. The other guardians each had a busy day today. North had an elf problem to deal with, Bunny had to deal with adolescent chicks around this time of year, which apparently was a big pain, Sandy and Tooth were always busy.
And most of his other friends weren't really fight oriented spirits.
He knew why Gale, Safia and even Wes were looking so worried. This smelled like a trap.
But another shiver went through the tree and he turned to the tree stump he'd entered trough.
"Jack please!" Gale objected, but it was too late. Jack was already shooting trough the stump, ready to start blasting the second he popped out. He had a fair idea who had chosen today of all days to attack on that place of all places.
He filled himself with good memories and positive thoughts.
His sister's bright smile in his minds eye he jumped out on the virtually empty island he immediately caught sight of the nightmare and with one gentle stroke the nightmare turned into a giggling replica of Emma and danced away to rejoin Sandy.
"Hahaha, that was my last one, but worth it," a sleazy but fragile voice came from behind him. He turned around with a defiant frown. He can feel that he isn't at full strength, and he can feel that the currents that had almost become part of him is absent. It's a disturbing feeling, as is the near absence of his shadow, his unwavering connection to Jane. He could only hope that he wouldn't need it. He takes in his opponent an relaxes. Pitch has barely recovered from their last fight. Which already gives Jack the advantage. Because while he doesn't have back up from his friends, the strength he draws from his believers doesn't depend on the weather. It is there no matter what.
He gets in battle position. If pitch wanted a rematch, that's exactly what he'd get.
Movies » Rise of the Guardians Rated: T, English, Jack Frost, Wind, Words: 107k+, Favs: 98, Follows: 107, Published: 5/13/2015 Updated: 9/18/2019}
57 Chapter 29: 28) At high noon