Pascal woke with a start as Rapunzel bounced out of the bed.
"Come on Pascal! Time to get up! It's the first day of spring!" Pascal grunted and rolled over. Rapunzel groaned. "Oh come on Pascal, you promised to get me some flowers!" Pascal opened one eye ruefully and sniffed before opening both eyes and walking into Rapunzel's hands. "Oh, thank you!" She rushed to the window, chatting excitedly the whole way. "OK, I'll lower you down and I'll do some chores while you gather the flowers. Think you'll need fifteen minutes?" Pascal shook his head. "Alright, sweeping and mopping?" Pascal nodded. "Great! I'll get a vase set up before I get you." Rapunzel flung open the window and gasped. "Snow! Snow on the first day of spring?" It was true, there was a fine powder coating the ground below. Rapunzel moaned. "I wanted some flowers!" She sighed and backed away from the window. "Well Pascal, I guess you can head back into bed if you want." Pascal squeaked and patted her shoulder reassurringly. Rapunzel chuckled. "Thanks Pascal. Well, there's always tomorrow."
"Aw, come on, snow isn't that bad." Rapunzel and Pascal froze and looked at each other in shock. Who was that talking? Rapunzel glanced around for some kind of weapon and saw a frying pan. She picked it up and tiptoed back to the window.
"Who, who said that?"
"Huh?" She couldn't see anyone at the window and she knew someone wasn't down on the ground. So where was he?
"You, I'm talking to you. Who are you?"
"Wait, me? You can hear me?" A face popped down into the window, a boy around Rapunzel's age was hanging upside down from her roof. A blue cape fell over his head of white hair. Rapunzel screamed and hit him with the pan. "Ow!" He fell off the roof, but didn't fall to the ground below. Rapunzel screamed again and hid behind her mannequin. He came into the room with a staff, his feet not even touching the floor.
Rapunzel watched, mesmerized. "How, how are you doing that?"
He glanced down at his feet before floating down to the ground. He looked at her and grinned. "Oh, I can use the winds to get around." The grin vanished and he touched his nose gingerly. "But why'd you go and do that for? I have a perfectly good nose, thank you very much."
"Oh, oh I'm so sorry. It's just . . . no one ever comes here besides Mother."
He blinked at her. "Wait, am I the first person you've ever met besides your mother?" She bit her lip and nodded, holding the pan to her chest. "Why's that . . . whoa, that's a lot of hair."
Rapunzel gasped and leveled her pan at the boy. "What, what do you want with my hair?"
"What do I want with your hair? What do you want with your hair? I've never seen that much hair in my life, and I've traveled the world!" He moved some of it aside with his staff. "No wonder why you don't leave this tower! You have all this hair to take care of. Why don't you cut it?"
"What? How could you even suggest that? I can't cut my hair!"
He put up his hands. "Alright, alright, forget I even mentioned it." He glanced around the room. "So, this is where you live. With your mother, right?"
Rapunzel began to lower the pan. "Um, yeah. You're not, you're not going to cut my hair or want to use it?"
The boy looked at her, confused. "What? It's your hair, you do with it what you want. I'm just not used to seeing so much hair." He smiled softly. "Or a cute girl like you cooped up in this tower." His eyebrows furrowed. "Who, by the way, can see and hear me? How?"
She blinked. "Wait, no one can see or hear you but me?" She glanced at Pascal. He shrugged, he seemed to be able to see the boy.
"Well, yeah, your lizard could already see me, but most humans can't."
Rapunzel took a step forward. "Who are you?"
The boy took a bow. "I'm Jack Frost."
Rapunzel curtsied. "I'm Rapunzel. But what makes you special?"
"I'm the spirit of winter."
"The spirit . . . of winter?" Rapunzel gasped. "Oh so you're the one who made it snow out there!"
Jack winked. "Bingo."
Rapunzel crossed her arms and huffed. "Well you do realize it's the first day of spring, right? I'm supposed to have flowers, not snow!"
"Oh, well, sorry, miss Rapunzel, but I didn't realize having snow today would vex you all that much. I was just trying to vex the Easter Bunny."
Rapunzel blinked. "The Easter Bunny? But, Easter's not for another two weeks!"
Jack grinned. "I know, but Bunny's coming up today, and it really gets under his skin." He bowed again. "But I promise I won't bring snow next year, if it pleases you."
"Oh, um, alright. But, why do you like getting under the Easter Bunny's skin?"
"Jack Frost!" Rapunzel yelped at the yell and ducked behind the mannequin again. Jack just grinned even wider and stepped to the window.
"Aw, what's wrong, don't like a little late snow?"
"It's spring, you bloody showpony! Now get down here and clean this up!" Rapunzel inched towards the window and peeked out. A large rabbit stood below, thumping his right foot as he glared at Jack Frost.
Jack sat on the window ledge. "What? You expect me to melt the snow? You know I can't do that, Bunny. That's your job."
Bunny huffed. "You have a point, but you have to stop making it snow! It's spring now, stay in your season!"
"Where's the fun in that?" Bunny glared at him. Jack just grinned impishly back.
Bunny threw up his paws. "Fine! But you'd better not make it snow any later in spring ever again!" He tapped the ground, and he jumped into the hole that opened up under his paw. The hole closed and a little flower popped up on top.
"He looked really mad," said Rapunzel as Jack burst out laughing.
"Aw, come on, just a little harmless fun."
"Well I think you should leave him alone."
Jack thought for a moment. "Nah, I'm going to make it snow really hard one Easter. That's going to be loads of fun."
"Why do you like making him angry?"
Jack shrugged. "He makes it way too easy. I'm just trying to get him to loosen up and have a little fun." He looked at Rapunzel. "Just like you."
Rapunzel took a step back. "Me?"
"Oh yes, you, you sound like you need to get out and have a little fun yourself."
Rapunzel took a couple more steps back, shaking her head. "Oh no, Mother forbade me from leaving the tower. There are so many people who want to use my hair for bad things."
Jack raised an eyebrow. "Really? I don't think they even know about your hair! If they did, they'd be talking about it a lot." He kicked some of it again.
Rapunzel picked it up and brought it closer to her. "Well, that's why I stay here, so no one can find me and my hair."
He shrugged. "Uh, alright, whatever you say." He pointed at her. "But you still need to get out and have some fun. I mean, haven't you ever wanted to get out and just do something?"
Rapunzel chuckled nervously. "Well, there is one thing . . ."
"Well, it happens on my birthday, which is in the summer, but, um, every year, there are these lanterns that float in the sky and I would so like to see where they start rising into the sky."
"Ah, that does sound pretty cool," said Jack with a big grin. "But, why haven't you gone to see it?"
"Because someone will see me and want to use my hair." She clasped her hands. "But, maybe, when I'm older, Mother will take me to see them herself!"
Jack tilted his head. "How old are you, Rapunzel?"
Rapunzel crossed her arms and smirked. "I'm going to be eighteen this summer."
"Really? Wow, you're practically an adult!"
Rapunzel gasped and pressed the pan close to her chest. "Really? Oh, then maybe Mother will let me go this year!" She bounced and squealed.
Jack smiled softly as he ran his fingers through his hair. "Well, I certainly hope you will, you really should get out more." He tapped his fingers on his chin. "And as a matter of fact, since I really can't come out in the summer . . ." His face broke into a huge grin. "Oh, I could do that . . ."
"Um, do what?"
He winked. "Just you wait and see."
"Wait!" But he had already flown out the window. By the time Rapunzel got to the window, he was a speck in the morning sky. She let out a huff. "My first friend since you, Pascal, and he's left me hanging!" She burst out laughing before jumping with joy. "I have a new friend!" She stopped and clapped her hands over her mouth. "Oh, but I can't tell Mother about this, she's going to freak out." She let out a breath. "Keep it cool, I've got to keep it cool Pascal." Pascal squeaked and pointed with his tail. "Oh yes, I could do my chores while I wait." She grabbed the duster. "Though, I do hope Jack doesn't come back when Mother does, or that she gets here when he's here. That would be awkward." Pascal nodded in understanding. "Well, let's get to work then." She did her usual routine, Gothel came by for lunch and left after dinner. But there was no sign of Jack. Rapunzel began to wonder if he would be coming back at all when a soft wind pushed a few snowflakes into the tower. Pascal noticed them and pointed them out to Rapunzel.
She gasped. "Jack! Jack, are you back?" There was no answer. She put her head out the window, looking around for him. She heard a snicker. She glanced up, and Jack kissed her nose. She giggled. "What was that for?"
"I'm Jack Frost, I nip at your nose," he replied with a huge grin on his face.
Rapunzel covered her nose and giggled. "It's cold!"
Jack chuckled. "Precisely."
"So, why did you have to leave?" asked Rapunzel as she stepped away from the window. Jack flew in, his hand behind his back.
Rapunzel eyed the hidden arm. "Do you, do you have scissors?"
"Well, I did use scissors on these." He pulled his arm from behind his back to reveal a large bouquet of flowers. Rapunzel's hands flew to her face as she let out squeals of delight.
"That's, there's . . . I've never seen so many different kinds of flowers before!"
"An appropriate apology for covering all your flowers in snow, I hope."
Rapunzel took the bouquet. "Oh Jack, they're lovely!"
"So, you forgive me?"
Rapunzel hugged him. "Of course!" SHe gasped and backed away quickly. "Oh, I'm sorry, I should have asked first if . . ."
"Oh no, it's fine. I'm more worried about you. I am cold, after all, I'm the spirit of winter."
Rapunzel giggled. "Oh no, I'm fine. I didn't feel cold at all, in fact . . ." she took a step closer, "may I hug you again?"
Jack opened his arms wide, his smile nearly as wide. "Sure!" Rapunzel nearly toppled him over with the force of her hug. But she couldn't help it, she was so happy to have made a new friend, and she would never complain about seeing snow in spring every again.