I haven't been around for too long, but that's just for the immortal; I'm barely 100 years old. My name is Holly and this is my story. Surely you have heard of Santa Clause, but in only some versions of the legend has my mother, Mrs. Clause been mentioned. I guess the only way to tell my story is to start with hers. My mother and father met initially when she was only five. My father had been placing presents under my mother's tree in Germany when she was attacked by Pitch Black. He defended her and saved her from Pitch, but she had seen him. Since he had no idea what to do in this situation he picked her up and talked to her until she fell asleep. He tucked her in and thought that was the end of it. However, next Christmas came and he wound up meeting my mother who was waiting with cookies. This tradition continued for years despite for the disapproval from the other Guardians.
Before either of my parents knew what was happening years passed and they fell in love. The Guardians found out that if children see them during their childhood they will remember them into adulthood so they had to hide from the children, all the while taking care of them. When my mother turned 25 Santa brought her to the North Pole and he married her in the moonlight with his fellow Guardians present. I was born and I remained a single child because my parents loved to spoil me, or at the very least give me all of their attention. I have to be honest, growing up at the North Pole is probably one of the coolest things ever; All of the toys, all of the time, along with my loving mother and father. However, I found that I would trade all of the toys in my father's workshop for a few friends my age. I mean there were plenty of yetis and elves for me to play with, but there was always something missing from my life. So I found myself making friends with my father's fellow guardians.
Sandman was pretty much my best friend aside from a female yeti named Kanuk. Sandy would always take me out to see the world on his rounds to deliver dreams. He would always listen to my ramblings about whatever and made me feel better when I was sad. Since Sandy is immune to those kinds of problems I just made sure to let him know that I was listening to him at the Guardian meetings even when my father didn't. Tooth was fun…for a little while. She was so busy with giving directions to the Baby Teeth, which for some reason she didn't think could manage for ten second without her. Tooth quickly lost interest in me or anything I had to say; it was trumped by her own needs to be busy. Bunny and I got along well enough except for the fact that he and my father didn't get along. I remember all of my trips to the Warren being bring and beautiful. The woods and lush green made me feel free, but the best part of all was coloring the eggs with Bunny before Easter. I actually haven't been to the Warren in decades. It ended when my father and Bunny got into a major fight. It eventually was settled, but for some reason I didn't see Bunny or the Warren again.
I eventually grew out of the depression of not having friends "my age" and made the best of my time with Sandman and the Yetis. They are my friends now and I love hanging out with them. At one point I met this boy named Jack Frost, whom Phil had caught trying to break into the North Pole. I tried to help him out, but he just gave a coy smile and left. He was probably just as sad and alone as I had felt, but he wouldn't accept it. I had asked my father about Jack and he told me that he was a loner and that no children believed in him. I felt my heart go out to him.
Early in my childhood my father was told by the Man in the Moon that I was gifted with the same immortality as my father had. Though my parents tried to hide it from me I knew that I would out live my mother. We were so close especially around Christmas time when my father can't be home. When my mother finally did pass away, I was heartbroken and felt more alone than I ever. The Guardians came to give my father their condolences, but I was locked in my room…talking with Jack, who I had let in through my window and cried to him about it. I was happily surprised when he took it seriously and let me cry to him. Afterward, Jack took me to his hometown where we went ice skating and he took me flying along the wind. Since that day I have considered Jack my friend and I also became my father's confidant. My mother had always been the one my father leaned on for anything and I can't even begin to imagine the connection they shared. After her death my father took to relying on me.
Now I work for my father. The elves play, the yetis work, the female yetis are in the kitchen making food for the entire Pole. What does that leave for me? I guess if I had a category that would be Intel. In a way, I scan the world and help my father keep track of who has been good, who has been bad, and what the children want. Using this information it allows my father's imagination to run wild with creativity. I collect information this with the dreams Sandman creates. I'm now out every night with Sandman using a hover board my father created. He also created my Berry Bombs (made of Holly Berries) and the ornament earrings I wear act as smoke bombs. The twin swords I wear on my back are something I fashioned myself once I got older (70 years old), but my father helped me to perfect my swordsmanship. There is a lot of busy work and responsibilities. However, it's not as bad as it sounds, or I guess I should say as Jack makes it sound.
Time as an immortal is very strange, so I will explain. Though I am slightly over 100 years old I appear about twenty years old in human years. I was not assigned a role by the Man in the Moon as the Guardians were, so my appearance is also very human (these changes refer to Bunny and Tooth). I have long brown hair that I usually keep up in a bun and eyes as blue as my father's. My parents both told me I look like the other, but I like to think I look like the both of them. I am 5' 8" and have a relatively average build. Sandy has tried to tell me that I look absolutely beautiful, but I don't believe him. I wear a green long sleeve shirt that is lined with red silk along with some brown riding pants lined with fur. This is the outfit I wear when I am out patrolling and the rest of the time I have a red dress I wear at the Pole. I usually find myself wearing boots, but I do have other shoes.
This introduction was meant for you to know me a little better. Now let us begin the story…
I have been out patrolling with Sandy's dream sand for a while now and was recording the dreams of children with a dream catcher my father developed; it's like a camera for dreams. Eventually I made my way to Burgess, hoping to catch a glimpse of my friend Jack. I surf alongside the tendrils of dream sand and follow it from house to house until I reach a house near the center of town. I see some movement in the shadows. Hoping that it's Jack, I follow into the alley. Upon entering I don't see my frosty friend, but there is still movement in the shadows.
"Jack? Is that you?" I ask. Just in case, I remain near the small lamp post to one side of the alley.
All of the shadow's movement becomes rapid for a moment before falling completely still. I keep looking out into the darkness hoping that Jack is just playing another game where I will end up with a snowball in my face. It was only when the shadows became darker did I finally lose all hope that it could possibly be Jack. Instead, an eerie voice wavered in the air between the shadows and my spot in the light.
"Why, hello there. You must be little Holly, North's daughter I believe."
His voice put me on edge, but I was most certainly wasn't afraid. At first I couldn't tell where it was coming from; like the voice belonged to the entirety of darkness. However, when a pale gray face stuck itself into the light and startled.
"Ooh, poor little thing. Did I scare you?"
I remain silent and watch him through narrowed eyes. He has dark hair, but golden eyes making only his brow stand out in the darkness. His garb blends into the shadows like it goes in and out of the shadows with only one color – pitch black. This was Pitch Black, the Boogieman. I didn't need to know his name my father's description of him was a perfect picture. He looked over me like a vulture circling his prey as he actually began to circle me in the pattern of the light enveloping me. I know the Boogieman could move in light, this was meant to give me a false sense of security while he intimidated me.
"I have already sent your father a message so I will be brief. You are not a Guardian and this is not your fight. You stay out of my way or I will destroy you like the rest of them," he sneers.
"North is my father. What makes you think I will let you destroy him?" I ask firmly.
He continues his movement around you, but begins to laugh. His laughter is different. Before, his laughter bordered on a cackle, but now it rolls in his throat like thunder. His eyes never leave the prey and I begin to feel his tactics working.
"Quite frankly, it doesn't matter. I just thought you would like to live your immortal life a little longer. Unless you would like to join your mother," he whispers softly.
This man has just managed something Jack could have never done in a million years. He has just frozen my heart. My awareness of self has just gone numb and my eyes have been still as ice. I barely see him, but I can feel the flick of my wrist as I grab a batch of Berry Bombs from my pouch. He continues to smile unaware of my own movements and he stares on.
"Would you like that?"
I throw the berries without a second thought. Both he and his sinister smile vanish in seconds. I get the feeling that I must have at least scared him if I didn't manage to actually land a blow. I hear his cackling laughter once more.
"I didn't see that one coming. I'm looking forward to our next meeting, dear Holly. See you and the others soon."
With that the shadows returned to normal and any sign of his presence is gone. It is now that he has left I can feel the fear within me. I am worried about my father and the other Guardians. I jump back onto my hover board and take off for the Pole.