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Curly stiffened momentarily as she was nudged, and turned, though it was incredibly obvious it must be the ghost. Even dimmed, you could use his head as a nightlight. "Just... Remembering some unfinished business" she replied.
The events unfolding at the tooth fairy's palace were certainly interesting, seeing the guardians rushing to her aid though the fact the nightmares were stealing teeth of all things was frankly baffling. Though, she was the tooth fairy. ...Why was there a fairy for teeth in the first place...?
The answer soon came as the fairy explained things to film-Jack. Prompting Curly to give a brief "Huh" at her answers. That didn't really make any sense to her, who'd ever heard of memories being in teeth? But she seemed to be serious, and Jack wasn't offering much in the way of commentary beyond snarking back at Pitch.
Curly found the whole tooth collecting scene quite amusing, and was thoroughly enjoying it. She was even able to ignore the foreshadowing of the sand-sandman being crushed as the Guardians continued their work. Until Jack finally started muttering as his film self did battle with a nightmare. If anything, Jack's reactions to the following events on film were almost more unnerving than the actual events.
She could only stare at the door as he bolted. It wasn't hard to understand why, though she'd hoped the fact he knew how things turned out would have prevented that intense of a reaction. Miss Tairee's manipulation of the movie and comment about snack and bathroom break brought her attention back to the theater. "Right, probably a good idea" Curly said as she stood, and left to visit the snack machines.
By the time Jack returned, Curly was seated again with a large lidded paper cup full of apple soda (It seemed like a good compromise between trying apple juice and trying a soda). She watched as Sophie and Miss Tairee expressed their concern and condolences, but out of a desire not to overwhelm the being she was still getting used to not thinking of as a teenage boy, she kept quiet for the moment.
Karkat - Rick's Party
Once again, Karkat had been momentarily disconnected from his surroundings, but he managed to realize that Plague Knight gave something to Seiga to help her...go to sleep? That probably wasn't the intended effect, but he didn't know any better at this point. All he knew was that this dude in a bird mask just ruined his chances.
WHAT THE FUCK, MAN? Karkat pointed a finger at PK, not realizing he did this like five seconds ago. I WAS ALL ABOUT TO GET WITH HER AND YOU GO AND PUT HER TO SLEEP. THE FUCK?
Hearing Cole's comment about the time, Sans pulled out his phone while still lying on the sand and checked the time, much to his surprise it was already pretty close to midnight.
"actually you're kinda right, cole, it's almost midnight now so the city could start changing again any minute," he said, then sitting back up, "we didn't get much of a break today but at least we had fun with what little time we had left." He shrugged.
Ara Haan (Cinema) - Intermission
The following events flowed very quickly, and Ara was unable to take her eyes off the screen for several minutes. The growing conflict almost literally kept her on the edge of her seat, gripping the armrests with force. It went on until the fight between the tall shadow man who was clearly the main antagonist, and the short golden guardian who was clearly the more benevolent one. Naturally, she rooted for the latter to win, but unfortunately she could do nothing but watch in horror as the small Guardian was slain with an arrow formed by dark sand.
The sudden movement to her side and the movie being interrupted managed to bring her out of her stupor, only to realize that Jack had not only left, but also frozen his seat on the way out. The only thing that stopped her from going after him was the librarian's commentary. It seemed the only option was to wait.
And while she did so, she silently prayed that the golden man's soul remained forever peaceful in the afterlife.
Jack returned shortly after, but while he did attempt to not draw too much concern from his companions, his efforts were clearly not enough.
"Are you sure you're okay, Mister Jack?" Ara asked, clearly worried about the not-so-young boy. "I mean, we don't need to continue this if it brings back painful memories for you."
Lune took the compliment in stride and smiled back at Rex.
“Thanks, Rex... Where I'm from, we accept people from all walks of life. I'm pretty sure a few Steel Dragons defected from their respective enemy factions.”
And then Rex gave her a walkie-talkie. Rex said that it could be used to contact people throughout the city. However, they didn't set up a proper channel yet.
“I see. Well, I have a cellphone already. I think I got it from a mall a few days ago.”
After hearing from both Cole and Sans that it was already pretty close to the end of the day, Caro said, " Yeah, things were still tough, but we did get to have some fun and good times together in the end. And well, I guess it would be better to get going to the library soon then. I mean, in addition to whatever dangerous things that may be suddenly outside, we're currently technically beyond where the balconies usually are, so it would be best to not be here to find out what will happen with this beach when things change."
She got up and dusted off as much sand off herself as she could and then added, "I just need to find somewhere to change into my regular clothes and maybe to take a quick shower if there's still time for that and then we should be ready to really leave this place," She paused to look around if there were any changing rooms around, but it was too dark to see from far away enough for that. "Well, let's get going then," she finally added before starting moving back to the balconies, with Fried following her and hopefully her two other friends as well.
edited 9th Aug '16 9:14:49 PM by JamesShields
Cole carefully got to his feet, taking a moment to get himself steady, wincing a little. "...do what you need to do. I...I have to go. I'm...I'm glad to have spent time with you both. You've both been very kind to me when not a lot of people are and...and...a-and thank you. Whatever the next day brings, please be careful..."
He turned at that, adjusting his hat a moment, eyes going green only an instant before his image misted out of sight, though it wouldn't be hard to see faint footprints leading away from them, off the beach and back towards the city proper.
She slowly stirred, stretching her arms out and groaning, feeling like she had slept remarkably peacefully...in sand? Seiga strained to open her eyes and noticed, yes, she must've fallen asleep in sand. How exactly did this come to be? Standing above her was Karkat, Plague Knight and Viola, and she was resting her head on the latter's lap. All she could remember is coming back from poisoning the alien bull, and then here she was...and for some reason, she remembered the odd taste of Karkat.
Seiga couldn't make sense of that last bit. She withheld judgement on this matter for the moment, lest she jump to conclusions and murder Karkat.
Looking around alertly, she said to those gathered around her, "...What happened to me?"
The sound of the falling glass made quite the commotion as she pulled herself up, and ran right to the center desk. She slammed down on the wood with all of her body, not stopping to pretend to pant as she screamed at the disembodied voice of Miss Tairee, "MY MASTER IS DYING BECAUSE SHE ATE GLOWING POISON DRUGS, PLEASE HELP"
edited 9th Aug '16 10:06:39 PM by wikkit
Sans got up, following everybody's lead. He dusted off some of the sand on his shorts and was about to begin following Caro back to the balconies considering he was kinda carrying her clothes with him, but then Cole decided to go back into the city by himself to do god knows what. He turned invisible too, but thankfully being on the sand meant that walking on it left a trail and through that Sans could properly localize the spirit and with that he basically pulled his soul (and the rest of him) back.
"cole, now is not the time to be wandering the city by yourself, c'mon," said Sans, starting to look a bit tired both out of fatigue and also from Cole's shenanigans.
"Possibly infinite power of some kind? Or it might be a dud; I really don't know" Sir Redring said with a shrug. "But the dungeon is definitely there for some reason, even if it is only a home for dangerous monsters. Empty handed or not, I'm sure he'll manage to accomplish something worthwhile" the octopode added. He seemed like he might continue, but then the screaming approached and one of the revolving doors shattered, thankfully not harming the girl who came in due to the day's rules.
After she slammed her hands on the center desk, there was a bit of a pause, and Sir Redring gave an awkward cough. "... Um, the librarian is absent. As the sign says. I do believe everyone is incapable of being harmed today so, perhaps you are mistaken?" Sir Redring asked Yoshika.
"Why aren't you a bold one, to say all that in front us," I said to the troll. "Though I'm not so sure if she shares the same sentiment as you, Karkat. Perhaps we could ask her once she wakes up,"
It was around this point that the necromancer begun to rouse from consciousness. Asking about what'd happened to her, while she's under the effects of the drug.
"Good to have you back, Seiga," I spoke to her and smiled, surprised that she was able to wake up at all from the doctor's tonic. I guess he really is what he claims himself to be. "You were accidentally drugged after we did our little stunt, remember? Honestly, you were quite a handful to handle that even your servant was worried sick," I sighed. "She's off to go the library to beg for Miss Tairee's help even as we speak, but I suppose that no longer matters. You were lucky that we have a doctor nearby, but...," I intentionally trailed off before my gaze slowly fell onto the troll.
"Now then, Karkat," I began, with a smile. "Would you care to explain about what you would do to her again?"
edited 9th Aug '16 10:00:13 PM by JustSomeGuy732
Karkat turned to Viola, then back to Seiga, trying to remember what he just said. OH, YEAH...SO, LIKE, I KINDA NEED A KISMESISSITUDE, AND I KINDA NEED ONE TO FILL MY QUADRANTS AND SHIT, BUT THERE'S NOBODY HERE EXCEPT YOU, Y'KNOW? I THINK IT'S A MOTHERFUCKING MIRACLE THAT YOU'RE EVEN HERE, SO, LIKE...YOU WANNA DO IT, OR NAH? BECAUSE I'M TOTALLY COOL IF YOU DON'T WANT TO, I JUST NEED TO REALLY FILL MY FUCKING QUADRANTS, CUZ THAT'S IMPORTANT. REALLY IMPORTANT.
Ben shrugged. "It sounds like a trap to me. A place that dangerous with a really sketchy 'magic' orb just sounds like an excuse for adventurers to get themselves killed so some villain can take over," Ben muttered. At that moment, Yoshika entered the scene freaking out about her boss. Sir Redring raised a very valid point.
"Yeah, what he said," Ben told her, nonetheless sounding concerned. He was somewhat grateful that his Omnitrix was still cooling down after he had turned into Cybersaur, because otherwise he might force himself to go XLR8 and go check up on Seiga. She was probably fine. He didn't have any aliens that could heal anyway, nor did he have any knowledge on medicine, drugs, or anything of that sort.
"I'm the last person you'd wanna ask on that sorta thing anyway. Maybe Rick or Plague Knight'd know more about how to cure drugs," he suggested, his voice sounding a bit disgusted that he had actually recommended she see those two.
The Beach — Remember the C-bomb?
Lune explained that back in her home anyone was accepted no matter their background. Even some guys called Steel Dragons.
"You are not talking about actual dragons, are you? Because we fought one almost a week ago and..." he remembered flying one moment with Cole and the other he was burning alive and falling hundreds of feet in the air. That sure could take a toll on someone as reckless as Rex "Well, we made a lot of mistakes"
His flashback was luckily cut when Lune mentioned she already had a cellphone with her. With that they could easily stay in contact and he could even try to make her cellphone receive the walkie-talkies' signal.
"That's great. Give it to me. I'm gonna try something"
Cole definitely wasn't expecting the downright disorienting feeling of being pulled along by Sans's powers, and his invisibility vanished instantly with a frightened yelp before he realized it was the skeleton's doing. "Sans...I..." He winced some, looking to the ground. "B-Brother Marcus was...going to use my powers to find the demon...and what people said of those people s-sacrificing souls to resurrect it..."
He wrung at his hands in that anxious way he had. "I have the amulet to hide me from the demon's powers, and I...I can hide. By myself, where they can't find me, whatever the day brings. I can, but...but if anyone comes for me then people could get hurt...l-like you were before. I don't want anyone to get hurt. It's...it's safer if I leave and stay alone, for everyone around...I-I can take care of myself..."
To the Library
Reluctantly, Twilight let Cole go.
She then wandered the streets for a while, eventually making her way to the library.
She arrived in time to see Yoshika freaking out and smashing her way in. Very concerned, Twilight followed Yoshika in.
She was freaking out over her boss, but others pointed out the rather obvious problem: nobody could get hurt on this day.
Ben suggested the best choices for help otherwise (since Miss Tairee wasn't around) were Rick and Plague Knight.
"I'd go with Plague Knight. From what I've seen of Rick, he's... Not right in the head. Plague's got issues too, but not as much."
Curly responded that she had been merely thinking of some matters that she hadn't dealt with. Lewis had to sympathize with that sentiment, given he had matters of his own he couldn't possibly address in this place. What if something happened? He wouldn't have borne the idea of returning to Vivi being hurt further if not for the fact that there was nothing he could do about it.
"What kind of unfinished business?" he questioned.
On the screen he observed Past Jack and co. going on North's sleigh ride from hell. Would make a great amusement park ride, he mused. Though perhaps minus the "people falling off and showing up again just fine" part. That'd be a bit much.
The following scenes of stolen teeth and lost memories passed, toward which he didn't have much comment. He'd already seen the whole thing before, though it was charming to observe Present Jack's expressions shift in response to the passage of scenes.
Well, okay. The tooth-collecting competition was still a bit funny, and just plain fun.
Of course, this fun did not persist, and was soon interrupted by the entrance of tensions, culminating in the apparent death of the beloved Sandy by way of a black arrow to the back.
Present Jack then froze his seat and fled the room in a rush, seemingly in some sort of panic attack. Maybe the librarian was right about him not being equipped for this.
Nervously, he commented. "Maybe this wasn't such a good idea after all. Though, I thought knowing the ending would take away some of the punch."
Speaking of the librarian, she paused the movie and suggested everyone feel free to take a break. He took the opportunity to leave the room until Jack's return at latest, though it wasn't as if there was much to do out there, apart from letting certain blobby pink familiars quench their appetites to ward off potential incidents with the rest of the group's snacks and catching a brief glimpse of an overexcited girl crashing comically into a golem-looking creature to ask for directions.
The result was that he ended up returning just in time for Jack to also return and reassure everyone that hey don't worry everything's fine guys seriously. Whether the others believed him was to be seen, since they didn't have the luxury of already knowing how this ends, raising further questions about whether this was really such a good choice of movie.
"Man, this is intense for a kid's movie, huh."
"You may want to watch more kid's movies if you think that."
"Do what to me?!" She said to Viola as she stared at Karkat, her face betraying her shock.
Karkat certainly took his time explaining, and though it contained quite a lot of gibberish as his rants often do, the core message was still plainly obvious: He wanted to do her. To have sex with her.
She felt like her cheeks were on fire, so much blood flowed into them that they were beet-red. Her expression slowly, but surely, crumpled into something half-resembling her usual polite smile, and half-resembling utter disgust, barely contained. Having only met him for just a few minutes earlier that day, and the complete shock of what he was saying overriding her better judgement, she couldn't see that he was drugged. To her, he was seriously soliciting her in polite company like she was a common whore.
Her words came out very slowly, like each one took a great deal of effort to keep from flowing into a litany of anger. "Karkat, it's not important. No."
"I-I need, I need something..." she sputtered, once again trying her best to keep calm under these circumstances. There was something that Seiga did sometimes that certainly helped her concentrate in these kinds of times, and she put it to the test. Yoshika slapped herself across the face, the usual force even lighter on her face than when Seiga did it. It wasn't like it ever hurt to get slapped in the first place, but sometimes it was just calming.
She looked at them, pacing her breaths and trying to think less. Even if it lacked the usual punch, just the notion behind her action was enough to get her more stable. "...O-Okay, where's Rick or Plague Knight right now? What do they look like?"
Hearing Cole's reasons for leaving didn't make Sans feel any better about what was going on and in fact even seemed to make him more annoyed.
"are you for real? do you really think you can take care of a group of people all by yourself? you said yourself you literally got carried from point a to b by one guy and could do nothing about it all the way, what if those people do find you, cole? what are you gonna do? let yourself be used like some sort of tracking tool or whatever?" He sighed in frustration. "stop, just stop. going off by yourself in this place is asking for trouble, if you've been captured once with me there to back you up, how can you even think it's going to go any better if you go by yourself? it's not. stop trying to distance yourself from everyone because you think you're doing us a favor by directing all the trouble towards you and you alone, because guess what, getting yourself in trouble like that is not helping anyone.
He sighed again, he didn't sound angry, instead he just seemed frustrated and tired.
"i don't care if i die in this place, it doesn't matter anyway. i just want you people to stop making decisions like that, trying to magically solve other's problems alone even though you're dealing with people and problems far beyond anything you might be familiar with and ending up hurting yourself for nothing. twice today you've gone off on your own and twice today you've gotten yourself in trouble because of it and i'm not about to let you do that a third time. let other people help you, cole, i'm your friend that's what i'm here for."
edited 9th Aug '16 11:51:02 PM by FullMoon
Before Sandy's Death
Jack's face scrunched up in confusion and a bit of disbelief. "Wait, so your boss won't let you talk about yourself? At all? Why?" The spirit had known the one doing all this was twisted and weird, but didn't Tairee work for him? Why would he be giving her stupid rules like that?
The movie went on, and when Pitch was part-way through his speech, Tairee spoke again. This time about Pitch's age. "Yeah. All the Guardians are as well. But Pitch, he was around before any of them. No clue how long, though."
After Sandy's Death
Jack gave a non-committal grunt when Tairee spoke up again, too drained at the time to really argue with her point. She had warned him, he couldn't deny that. "Yeah, I know. Kind of forgot about that, really. And didn't really think they'd show it, you know. And thanks." Jack gave her a small lopsided smile.
Jack scratched his head at the librarian's question, about how the arrow had killed Sandy for a bit. He didn't really know fully, but he had an idea. "Uh, I couldn't tell you for sure. I'd have to ask Sandy that. I think it was more," Jack seemed to think it over, his face twisting in thought., "ok, so Sandy is made out of his sand pretty much... which is kind of weird now that I think about it..., anyway. Pitch somehow managed to figure out how to turn Sandy's dream sand into that... nightmare sand. So when... when the arrow hit Sandy, it turned his body into nightmare sand and... well, it took Sandy with it." Jack looked like he'd swallowed something sour by the end of his description. After a moment, he seemed to think of something else. "Though... I'm not sure... if we can't be, you know, killed that way. The only time I'd ever fought was against Pitch, and I can still feel pain, trust me on that one."
A touch on his arm drew his attention to Sophie, who was looking up at him with concern. He smiled at her, touched and faintly amused at her now comforting him. "Hey Soph. Nah, I'm ok. Just took me by surprise is all, got a little mad. Are you ok? Sorry if I scared you."
Hearing Ara address him, Jack felt his face heating slightly. Even her calling him 'Mister Jack' didn't bother him. Turning to look at her, he again found himself finding it both equally difficult and easy to focus on her face; And he fought to keep his eyes centered on hers. His stomach fluttered strangely, and he shoved it to the side as some effect of finding her attractive. Though, he had no clue why. "Yeah, I'm, uh, I'm fine. No point in hiding from things that already happened. That one had just slipped my mind. Don't really like thinking about it." His grin was a little bigger and brighter than usual, flashing perfectly straight, white teeth. "Thanks though, Ara."
He blinked, looking around at the variety of faces watching him with varying degrees of sympathy, and it clicked. "Oh. Oh!" He waved his hands in front of himself. "Right, sorry. Sandy's fine. He comes back fine. Just watching it again took me by surprise."
Jack glanced at Lewis. "Really? This is normal?" He ran a hand through his hair. "Geez, movies have changed since I last saw one, then."
edited 10th Aug '16 12:50:11 AM by Alleydodger
"There's something I'm meant to destroy. It's a long story" Curly said simply, the last part perhaps emphasized by her focusing on the movie before it could get too far ahead of her.
Curly gave a small sigh of relief at the news that Sandy, despite the most recent scene depicted by the move, came through all right after all. Maybe it had something to do with that belief that Jack and Miss Tairee were talking about. "Well that's a relief!" Curly said cheerfully at the news. "You had me worried for a while there"
"I have confidence in Bluring. We are rivals for a reason, after all" Sir Redring said to Ben with a quick shrug of sorts, then added confidently, "besides, if he does meet some terrible fate in there, then I could just go in after him!"
When Yoshika spoke up, Sir Redring rubbed one of his tentacles on the side of his head. "Hmm. That sounds like some kind of intoxication; in any case, I think the worst injury that could come to her today would be to her pride, if such a state were to lead her to embarrassing acts. I'd think the best place for you now would be at her side to keep an eye on her" Sir Redring suggested to Yoshika. "Also I... Don't really know either of the people you're talking about" he admitted.
"Hmm, that still seems... Strange" Miss Tairee said after Jack's explanation, thinking for a bit. "If the Boogeyman did something like corrupting the Sandman's essence, I would've expected that to result in an evil Sandman. Unless the Boogeyman just absorbed the essence, which makes me think that perhaps for a while he technically was the Sandman as well as the Boogeyman..." she seemed to be more quietly rambling to herself at this point.
Then the exchange about children's movies got her attention. "Well it depends on the universe, but generally the key to a children's movie is that it never gets too overtly graphic, and has a happy ending. Dark themes and things that are especially horrifying if you actually stop to think about them are fair game" Miss Tairee added into the conversation. "... Unless it's meant to be a cautionary tale, like the classic style of fairy tales; those can get especially dark, and can have rather bleak endings" she added after a bit more thought.
Gon waited patiently to see if Rick was available.
But he decided to ask Morty. "Not to be rude, I believe I haven't introduced myself yet."
He extended his hand out to him.
"My name is Gon. Don't mind the slight Korean accent. I was raised in Minnesota."
Ben raised an eyebrow as Yoshika proceeded to slap herself in the face. It seemed to calm her down so Ben didn't comment on it. "Rick is this really tall old guy in a labcoat with spiky blueish-grey hair like this," Ben explained, making a gesture around his head to show Rick's signature spiky hair. "Plague Knight is a short guy in a black hood and a green.... bird.... mask.... thing. Yeah, I think Plague Knight'd know more about it than Rick would," he stated, agreeing with Twilight.
His eyes raised. "Hey, uh, Twilight. I don't know how heroism works where you come from, but I'm trying to put together a hero group to protect people in the City. I've already asked the.... person keeping us here, to put a jail in the city for the bad guys. I need some help to fight crime in this City. You in?"
edited 10th Aug '16 7:14:38 AM by AllHailThrall
Cinema - Memories
Jack chuckled at Curly. "Sorry about that."
The Winter spirit blinked in surprise and Tairee's theory. "That... that makes a scary amount of sense. Especially with how much sand he had in the end." Then another thought hit Jack. "Wait a minute... Pitch looks like he's made out of shadows, or nightmare sand, like Sandy is. Do you- do you think there's a connection?"
His only reaction to her talk about cartoons was a mildly confused and interested 'Huh'.
On-screen, once Miss Tairee started the movie again, the scene changed from Jack and the remaining Guardians, to a high angle shot of Pitch in a snow clearing; laughing cruelly. As he watched the Guardians leave through one of North's portals, he grinned wickedly.
"Finally! Someone who knows how to have a little fun."
The scene changed again, to a sorrowful scene of the remaining Guardians, the yetis and the elves all holding a memorial for the Sandman. Jack watched quietly and respectfully, with a twinge in his chest. He hadn't been there, feeling like he'd failed Sandy and the others and wasn't one of them. He felt like being there would have been disrespectful, and he wasn't worthy of it.
And sure enough, the scene changed to show Jack when he had been sitting and looking out one of the workshop's windows. Movie Jack touched his finger gently to the glass, forming a small image of Sandy from frost. That little trick had taken him years to figure out and perfect. North came up behind him, and Jack spoke.
"I wish I could've done something."
He still did. Even, though he had made peace with what had happened and moved past it for the most part, a part of him still felt that he'd been too slow, too weak. Not good enough. Like the Jack on screen was feeling.
Which is why he couldn't help but smile, as North spoke. Somehow, the massive Russian knew how to get to the heart of things, and help Jack, with only a handful of words.
As the scene ended, and changed to show the lights on North's globe going out and showing that children no longer believed, Jack took a deep breath. Sandy's 'death' had reminded him of the next bad things that were going to happen, including Jack's big mistake. He wasn't going to be caught by surprise this time.
The movie continued on, with Bunny suggesting putting all their effort into Easter, to try and keep the belief strong. It had been a great plan, and would have worked. If not for Jack.
"As much as it pains me to say, old friend, this time, Easter is more important than Christmas."
The spirit chuckled at Bunny's reaction to those words. The look on his face, it had looked like he could have cried with joy at how happy he looked to have heard that. Quickly, things moved on and the rabbit opened up a hole to his Warren beneath everyone. Sliding down that had been a ton of fun, and as enclosed as it was it was still pretty fun. Nothing close to flying, though.
The Guardians on-screen were dumped out into the open, and the Easter Bunny's Warren was revealed to those watching. It was cave-like, and covered in moss, grass and flowers. Old, ruin-like structures could be seen, and two of the rabbit's Egg Golems stood nearby. They were strange-looking things, egg-shaped with strange faces that could rotate and little legs.
His introduction was interrupted, as he caught the sound of something coming from a tunnel. The Guardians stood ready to fight, only for it to be revealed to be the young girl, Sophie, who had gotten hold of North's snow globe earlier. She was carrying a bunch of little white eggs, their little legs scurrying in mid-air.
Jack watched in amusement as the on-screen him backed away from helping deal with the young girl, humorously saying, "I'm invisible, remember."
Then came Tooth's attempt. Showing the young girl teeth with blood and gum on them. Understandably, Sophie ran off crying. Chuckling, Jack shook his head. "They really had no clue what to do. They spent so long away from kids, they'd forgotten just how to be around them."
North said it perfectly a moment later. "We are very busy bringing joy to children. We don't have time... for children."
Their expressions said everything about what saying that out-loud made them realize. So, of course Jack had to intercede. Just to make sure things worked out. All it had taken, was a little bit of magic.
On-screen, the movie Jack formed a delicate snowflake and sent it drifting towards Bunny. Those watching would notice that, when it touched his face, it disappeared into a sparkle of blue magic which covered his nose and eyes. A grin formed on the rabbit's face, and the next scene he was happily showing Sophie around. Jack shrugged, with a crooked grin. "He was too serious. So, I gave him a... little nudge."
The next few scenes would probably be surreal to those who had never actually seen the movie. Little eggs with legs being born from flowers. Thousands of the little things pitter-pattering around, running through flowers that painted them, jumping into a river that dyed their shells bright colours, sliding down branches that covered them in patterns. It was a strange sight, to be sure.
The painting went fine, and soon the eggs were heading towards the tunnels that lead to the surface. Jack smiled sorrowfully, as he watched the quiet moment he and Bunny had shared. He sighed. "Here we go again."
Jack was quick to volunteer to take Sophie home. It had been a smart idea, since he could defend himself best against Pitch compared to the others. And he would have been fine, if he hadn't underestimated Pitch. All it had taken was one angry comment about teeth, and he had figured it out. Used Jack's memories as a lure, and a way to twist things to his advantage. Funny then, that they were also what lead to his failure.
"Jack!" A voice rose on-screen, distant and echoey.
"That voice, I know that voice."
The voice came again, and Jack took flight; heedless of Baby Tooth's worry. He followed it, almost desperate to find the source. Soon, he came to a broken, rotting bed frame over a deep hole. "Of all the places to have his entrance, it was under a bed. For a guy who complained about hiding under beds, kind of a weird choice, huh."
Jumping down, the Winter Spirit found himself within a dark cavern, Pitch's lair. The voice called over and over, and once again he ignored Baby Tooth's worry, pursuing it. Just like Pitch had wanted. He'd been stupid, to think that he could have gotten in their without Pitch knowing. It had been too good a thing, but he'd been blinded. Desperate to find the answers. And it had almost cost him his friendship with the Guardians, and Baby Tooth. He'd promised never to do something like that again. To put himself so thoughtlessly before others, not thinking of the consequences.
On-screen, Jack scrabbled desperately through the pile of teeth containers, looking for the one he just knew had to be there.
"Looking for something?"
Angry and desperate, he attacked Pitch without a second thought; even when it was just a shadow. Of course, Pitch had wanted that.
"Don’t be afraid, Jack."
"Afraid? I’m not afraid of you."
"Maybe not, but you are afraid of something."
"You think so, huh?"
"I know so. It’s the one thing I always know. People’s greatest fears."
And he had. Jack had gotten cocky, forgotten exactly why he was the Boogeyman. Like he'd said to Tairee. He wasn't that scary, but he didn't have to be to be the Boogeyman.
"Yours is that no one will ever believe in you."
Pitch taunted Jack, confusing him, pricking at him. Chipping away at his confidence, little by little. Pitch's greatest power hadn't been his Nightmares, or his sand. Those were new. It was his words. He always knew. The right word to say, the right action. Everything that made that fear grow.
"Do you want them, Jack. Your memories." He had spoken it softly, almost kindly. The temptation had been strong, and for a moment Jack had almost taken it. And Pitch just laughed. He'd pushed Jack to the breaking point, then dropped that last piece.
"You don’t know who I am!" He had meant it as a threat, but watching it now from the outside, the spirit could see how weak it had been.
"Of course I do! You're Jack Frost! You make a mess wherever you go, why you're doing it right now."
A flicker of a smirk danced across Jack's face as he watched Pitch toss the him on screen his teeth. That gesture had been what led the Guardians to lose trust in him. But it had also been what gave him his memories, that let him beat Pitch.
The Jack on screen was understandably worried. "What did you do?"
He’d known right away that something was up when Pitch actually gave him the teeth. He just didn't know what.
"More to the point, Jack. What did you do?" And with a mocking laugh, the Boogeyman disappeared into the shadows.
"Happy Easter, Jack."
And Jack was left alone, in a tunnel of smashed eggs and broken golems.
When the scene changed to Bunny, Jack clenched his eyes shut for a second, then opened them. Again, Jack was silent for the next part; A tightness around his face, but otherwise blank. The looks of betrayal, North's disbelief, Bunny's anger. All of it felt like a stab wound in his chest, but he kept watching.
"We should never have trusted you!"
The movie moved back to Jamie, and Jack grinned at the young boy's belief. The last light. He’d refused to stop believing, even when facing Pitch.
Then came Antarctica. That had been Pitch's biggest mistake. He'd pushed Jack into a corner, and give him the push needed to learn who he was. To stand his ground and know what he stood for. He was surprised, though, by the sheer anger on his cartoon counterpart's face as Pitch spoke. He'd felt it, but to see it was different.
He lashed out in anger, and black met blue as their magics clashed. And as they fought, they spoke. Jack had come to understand Pitch a little more than, even sympathize to a point. But he thought power, and fear, would give him what he longed for. He couldn't see that it would never help, never fill that hole.
"All those years in the shadows, I thought, no one else know what this feels like. And know I see I was wrong."
And then, the... thing that they had made, that Pitch had been so proud of. That was what made him realize. What Pitch was offering, was empty.
"No, they'll fear both of us. And that's not what I want."
And then, for the first time, Jack saw what his rejection did to Pitch. Even the cruel, heartless person that the Boogeyman was, the sorrow and hurt on his face pained Jack. They were alike, like Pitch said, and given enough time and without luck, Jack could have ended up just like him. He sighed. "Maybe one day, you’ll realise that you don’t need fear."
Pitch, holding Baby Tooth with the threat of crushing her, got Jack to give up his staff. Then, Pitch had turned back on his word. The spirit snorted. He wasn't ever going to fall for that again.
Baby Tooth, showing her fierce spirit once again, stabbed Pitch with her nose. Pitch threw her, and broke Twinetender. And then came the most important moment of Jack's second life.
Left trapped, with only the shattered remnants of his staff, he was saved by Baby Tooth. And Jack got his memories back. Glimpses of his childhood, playing and joking. And then, that day on the lake. When the ice was thin. He gave his life to save his sister, and the Moon chose him.
When the ice broke, and the Jack on screen fell, Jack sucked in a sudden breath and twitched. His breath hissed out from between his teeth, and his hands clutched the seat, and the water filled the screen. He still remembered it. The water, so cold it burned, had sapped the energy from his limbs so quickly. All he could do was watch as the surface, barely an arm-length away, grew more and more distant. His limbs had stopped working, and every breath filled his lungs with water; Water that just weighed him down even more. And in that dark and cold, he had died.
He didn't regret it. Not to save his sister, as little as he remembered of her still. But, he had been terrified of water ever since. He could go near it just fine. Even walk on it, thanks to his ice. But going in it? He shuddered at the thought.
The moment he came out of the memories, he scooped up Baby Tooth. He'd been the happiest he could remember. He knew who he was. Why he was there.
"I had a family! I had a sister! I saved her!"
"That’s why you chose me."
And that was why Jack, for all that he had put him through, couldn't hate the Man in the Moon. He'd given the Guardian a second chance, to protect and bring fun and joy to other children, just like he had his sister; Even if it cost him his life.
"I’m- I’m a Guardian."
All it had taken was a bit of thought, and some magic, and Twinetender was fixed. Free to leave, the Jack on-screen rocketed into the air; Ready to take the fight to Pitch. What he found, was Pitch's globe. He'd watched in silent horror, as they went out one by one. But, just as it seemed lost. One stayed alight.
The last light.
Jamie's speech to his toy bunny, seeing it now as a cartoon, was incredibly adorable. Jack couldn't help but smile and chuckle.
On-screen, Jack used his powers to draw images on the window. An egg, a rabbit. His power brought it to life, an ethereal rabbit that dashed around the room before exploding into snow. He hadn’t even known he could do that till he tried. And then, it happened.
"Did he just say?"
"He said it again. He said- you said…"
Jack hadn't believed it at first. That Jamie could see him. After so long, it had become nothing but a faint hope. And when it did… Jack couldn't fight the massive grin spreading across his face as he watched the screen. This was something he would never forget.
"Wait. Can you hear me?"
"Can you… can you see me?"
"He sees me! He sees me!"
And Jamie was someone he would never forget. For what he gave Jack that night.
edited 10th Aug '16 7:35:36 AM by Alleydodger
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