Not only were we up against a hobogoblin army, now we had giants and trolls and even werewolves to take care of. Jack and I turned to the students of the school. They looked at us expectantly. I grabbed Merida’s hand.
“What do we do here, General?” I asked.
“Nay, I’m not the General. The two o’ you are our Generals.” She shook her head with a smile.
“But I don’t know what to do!”
“Just have fun with it.” Jack said, hand on my shoulder. I gulped and looked over the enemy army. “You’ll take the ones on the left; I’ll take the ones on the right?”
“Same with the troops?”
“Done.” Then we turned back to the kids. “Thank you for agreeing to fight this war with us. We know many of you will be doing this at the risk of your own lives. We fight anyways! We will be brave, courageous, determined…” Merida cut him off.
“Will ya just do the war cry already? We dunna have time for a monologue.”
“To battle!” Then we all screamed. Maybe the fact that really high pitched screams were being aimed at them would scare the enemy away. Nope, that didn’t work.
So we started with our war. I wasn’t sure what to do, actually. I just ran in like everyone else. Jack went in a completely separate direction than me, so I just flew up above the field and decided just to lend a hand where it was most necessary. Of course, Giselle was holding a little dagger, shaking with fear with her eyes closed, completely surrounded by hobogoblins. I guess the worse monsters decided to take on a more worthy opponent. I swooped down and froze a dozen of them, but I needed her help.
“Giselle, open your eyes.” I said. She opened them, still shaking.
“Vanessa, I’m scared.” Giselle said in a voice completely unlike her own.
“No, no. Um, none of that. Just calm down. You’re not gonna die.” I took out at least two dozen more hobogoblins. I then got an idea. “We’re gonna have a little fun instead.”
“How are we going to have fun? We’re surrounded, and killing is not one of the things I’m good at.” In answer, I made a snowball appear in my hand. I closed one eye, aimed, and whipped it right at a hobogoblin. Jack had told me that hobogoblins can’t be hit with snowballs and live. Snow hurts them in the first place, but snowballs? It’s like you’re shooting them.
“Here, just keep throwing!” I said as I flew away, leaving enough snow to come up to her knees.
Nobody else really needed help at that point. Except Charlotte, but she was beyond any help. Our first casualty. I found out that werewolves can only be defeated with silver the hard way. There I was, completely surrounded with werewolves, my snow powers useless, unable to fly away because they were too tall and I wasn’t fast enough. They were just about to pounce when they were all hit with a volley of arrows. They fell down dead. I looked around for Merida, but it wasn’t her. It was Mulan.
“Silver tips. I’m always prepared.” She went over to the bodies and collected her arrows, running back into the fight faster than I could say “Thank you.”
Next issue; Rapunzel. She was doing great, but there was a giant right behind her, about to pick her up and undoubtedly eat her. She was too engrossed with her fight with a troll to notice it. I flew over and pushed her out of the way just as the hand made a grab. It picked me up instead. When my head was inches away from its teeth, I heard the loudest meow in the history of the world. The giant lowered me down to stare in shock at the giant cat leaping straight for him, Alice riding on its back. I’m pretty sure she said “Go Dinah!” So it had to be the cat we threw down the well. I didn’t have time to ask questions. He dropped me. It was quite a distance, so if I hadn’t landed on Maximus’ saddle, I would have died.
“You are the best horse in the history of the world. I owe you a great debt, Hero.” I said, hugging his neck. There was a bow in one of his saddlebags. I had dropped my sword somewhere, so I grabbed it. I couldn’t see any arrows around, so I just made some out of ice. Then I was unstoppable, sending arrow after arrow. I think at one point I actually laughed. That scared me almost as much as the war itself and the thought that my friends were in danger.
Speaking of in danger, I was riding Maximus around, shooting arrows when I heard Jack scream. I whipped around, looking for him. Then I saw him. A troll had each of his appendages, and I could tell they were pulling. I panicked and jumped from Maximus as he was galloping. I hit the ground hard, but I barely felt it. I stood and ran toward him. I shot one troll with an arrow. The trolls dropped him. He just laid there moaning. They tried to grab him again, I stood over him, bow at the ready.
“Get back!” I yelled. But it was all just bravado. I was panicking. Luckily, Tiana and Ariel took care of the trolls. Jack was in no shape to fight. I called for Pocahontas and she and John Smith carried him back into the dorm on a stretcher. I wanted to go with them, to make sure he was okay, but something really strange held me back.
Snow White was standing at the edge of the woods, a little blue bird on her fingers. She appeared to be singing to it.
“Aaah ah, aaah ah.” she sang. The bird replied with the exact same song. She did it three times. On the last ‘ah’ she held the note for a long time before yelling at the top of her lungs “TTACK!” You get it, attack? But anyways, deer and birds and rabbits and skunks and squirrels and chipmunks and raccoons all came running out of the woods and actually attacked the enemy fearlessly and ferociously. Several eyeballs hit the dirt, and many a face was scratched to the point of nothingness. Once, I saw five deer take out a giant.
The shock of that was nothing compared to the shock of seeing what Snow White had managed to do to herself in less than ten seconds. Her hair was a mess, her bow was gone. Her skirt was shorter and torn at the sides she was barefoot and the puff sleeves of her dress were gone. She had also managed to get hold of two double-bladed war axes. I stood staring in shock until she came over to me.
“What happened to you?” I asked with shock and concern.
“I’ve been waiting for a war like this. I just needed to go and get my reinforcements.” she said, not sounding a thing like what she usually sounded like. “And what about you? You have any reinforcements coming?”
“Jack called some in while he was on guard duty last night. He said he called in the other Guardians.”
“What?! Why would he call in those flower-pickers?! Santa Claus? The Tooth Fairy? The Sandman? The Easter Bunny? What are they gonna do? Kill them with over-excessive friendliness?”
“Ten minutes ago you were a literal flower-picker. Seriously, you were picking flowers and then you ran off into the woods.” I looked up and saw a little hummingbird person over Snow’s head. It gave me a note and then flew away. It said that none of the Guardians would be able to make it. I groaned and grabbed another arrow out of thin air. “Well, there goes that plan. We have to do this.”
I was about to throw myself back into the thick of the fight when Pocahontas ran out and grabbed my arm.
“Jack wishes to speak with you.”
“Now? But we’re in the middle of a war right now!”
“He insisted. He says it is important.”
I dropped my bow and ice arrows and ran for the building. The only thing he’d ever insisted on was going out with me, so if it was that important, I had to hear it. I went to where they were tending to the wounded and closed my eyes. These people were my friends, and now they were so injured. Naveen looked terrible. I didn’t think he was going to make it.
“Where’s Jack? I don’t see him.” I didn’t.
“He’s over here.” She moved a curtain out of the way and there he was.
“Why’s he here?”
“So that we remember that he doesn’t need as much attention as the others do. He’ll heal on his own, quickly too, but I don’t know how quickly. Probably not for a couple of days.”
I went in and she moved the curtain back in place. Jack appeared to be asleep. When I touched his cheek, he opened his eyes and smiled at me.
“How’re you feeling?”
“Awful. I’d be feeling a lot worse if you hadn’t stepped in. You were amazing.”
“Not that amazing. Did you see that giant cat?”
“Yeah! Isn’t that crazy?” he said with a laugh. Then he groaned. “Laughing hurts. But if I don’t laugh, I’ll cry.”
“Crying’s overrated.” It was my turn to laugh.
“Yeah, you should know. It’s amazing that you haven’t cried about this whole thing yet.”
“I might give out without any warning.” I chuckled, and then figured I’d tell him a little bit of a story. “Snow White’s out there kicking some major ass. She’s using the woodland creatures that she usually hangs out with. She told me she’d been waiting for a war. Not expecting it, just waiting for it.”
“And how are the other Guardians doing?”
“Oh, um… Tooth sent me a note. None of them can come.”
“What? What did they say?”
“They said they protect children who believe, they don’t fight in battles just because another Guardian feels obliged.”
“I don’t feel obliged, I want to!”
“Jack, just calm down.” He lay back down and sighed. “How about you tell me what you wanted to tell me.”
“Oh, okay.” He sounded surprised. Then he seemed to be at a loss for words. What he said sounded made up and not actually what he wanted to say. “Tomorrow’s Christmas, so we shouldn’t go fight. We should all stay inside.”
“That’s a good idea. But what did you really want to tell me?”
“You insisted I come to talk to you in the middle of a war, it’s clearly something.”
“I was going to tell you to go back to the academy. I was going to say it was too dangerous and that you should leave, but I know you’ll be fine.”
I smirked. That was true. I was holding us together. Then I asked him what time it was. “Nearly dinner. Why?”
“We’re all going to go down to the cellar and eat something for Christmas Eve.”
“Even the injured people?”
“Everyone, Jack. I gotta go round them up.”
I ran back outside and wondered how I was going to get their attention. I grabbed Tiana and told her to round up the troops.
“How am I supposed to round all of them up?” she asked.
“The same way you round up the troops at the dorm. Tell them to come in for dinner.”
She seemed to get it. She whistled and all the kids and even most of the enemy turned and looked at her. “We’re going to eat now. RUN FOR IT!!!!!”
All the campers ran for the cabin. Once everyone was inside the cabin, we shut the door and we barricaded it. We all ran down into the cellar and shut the hatch above us.
Tiana went into the little kitchen down there and started to cook a chicken (one that I kicked once) and I offered to help. It turns out that I couldn’t cook. I cut my fingers to crap. By the time Tiana told me to just go check on Jack, I was amazed that I still had fingers. My hands were bleeding from multiple spots.
“Oh, no! Multiple stab wounds!” I yelled when I was in the den. Jack and I laughed, but nobody else seemed to get it.
Half an hour later, we all ate a great big home-cooked dinner. Naveen died, and we all cried and stuffed him in a hole until we could bury him. Then we all fell asleep to the sound of Tiana bawling her eyes out.
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