5. part 5
Hiking up a snowy slope, I haul my rucksack higher onto my shoulder and break into a run to catch up with Elsa and Jack. "So.." I wheeze, slowing down. "Who is this girl were picking up?" "When did I say it was a girl?" Jack said, spinning his stick across his fingers so that splashes of ice leaped out and frosted the sides of the trees around us. "Stop it, Jack." Elsa laughed- pushing the stick away as he pointed it at her jokily. "Back at the castle." I continued, hastily. "You said 'she'. Who is she?" Jack stopped and sucked in his breath; Elsa paused a few paces after him. "That's the thing..." He started- shoving his hands into his pockets. "The king won't tell me unless I bring Elsa to him... And you, of course." Jack turns his head to me, and shrugs apologetically. "So basically... We don't know what we're looking for." Elsa said, her hand on her hip. Jack shot a flow of ice to the ground, and flew up into standing position where he made gestures with his hands that resembled the ones he made back at the castle. "NO! no, it's not like that. I take you to the king and he'll tell us where she is..""but if you don't know who she is, then how do you know she's a girl?" Elsa added, flashing me a suspicious smile. "Um.... Well, I wasn't meant to.... He wouldn't.... Oh...." Jack stuttered- not looking Elsa in the eye. "Lets just say unauthorised personal research." I expected Elsa to intervene further, but instead she laughed and placed her hand on Jack's shoulder before continuing up the slope with me running after them once again.
We walked through the woods until around seven o'clock, and at which time Elsa fell against a tree and sighed- out of breath. "Ja..Jack.... Please... Can we stop?" She whispered as I slumped to the ground next to her- leaning my head on Elsa's arm. "Yeah. Jack? Come on..." I moaned- watching Jack as he stopped and turned around. "Come on ladies, I thought you were meant to be tough?" He laughed. Both me and Elsa scowled at him furiously, and Jack was soon sitting down next to us on the hard ground. +++ As darkness fell over the forest, all three of us sat against a huddle of trees and watched as the stars gradually swam into the sky. The weather was freezing cold- and i rubbed my hands together in an attempt to keep warm. "E... Elsa?" I stuttered- my teeth chattering violently. Elsa was laughing hysterically at something Jack had just told her, and seemed to have not heard me; I suppose I already knew it would be like this- I'm classified as the irritating one who needs help and is just tagging along; as soon as someone better comes along its bye- bye Anna. Maybe that's why Kristoff left. I felt like I had been punched in the chest- tears welling in my eyes. I fought them back, and cleared my throat. Don't be pessimistic, Anna. It's one time they didn't hear you. Try again. "Elsa? Elsa, can we light a fire? It's freezing." I said, tugging my cloak around me to cling to the small amount of warmth it gave me. Elsa stopped laughing and turned to me- her hair enriched with icy blue in the moonlight. "The cold doesn't bother us, Anna. You light a fire." She said, before turning to Jack and causing both of them to collapse into laughter. "The cold never bothered us anyway...." She sung under her breath- causing more laughter to erupt. "But.... I thought.... I thought you knew how to light a fire? Elsa? How do you do it?" I hoped Elsa would jolt out of the conversation again and come and help me- but this time she couldn't be diverted. I grumbled at them under my breath before collapsing onto my side in the snow and curling up for what could only be an uncomfortable sleep.
I awoke at sunrise to Jack shaking my shoulder. "Anna? Hey, Anna? Wake up!" I opened my eyes wearily to see Jack and Elsa standing over me- their faces blurred. "Come on, Anna. We're almost at the river- remember? We're almost there!" He said, holding out his hand in assistance to me. I shook my head and stumbled to my feet- my head feeling as heavy as a rock. Elsa leapt to my side and supported my arm. "Are you okay, Anna?" Elsa asked, straightening the braid on her shoulder. +++ "Yes..... Just... Just tired." I said, sleepily. A shiver ran down my spine- and I added: "and cold." Elsa shot Jack a guilty look, but it was soon forgotten as She tugged off her own cloak and slung it over into my arms. "Wear that, Anna. We've gotta get going." She smiled, before walking over to Jack and shoving him so he stumbled backwards- her eyes enriched with her playful mood. I hadn't seen her like this since we were little- since the day when we were playing in the great hall back at home and.... The thing happened that Elsa will never talk about. I sighed at the memory of the one time I asked her about what happened- Elsa burst into tears and scrambled up into her bedroom- before taking a deep breath and setting off after Elsa and Jack, who were play fighting and laughing up ahead.
Walking closely behind the pair- and After a few minutes- I caught on to their conversation and listened intently while I trudged through the thick snow. "So, how long do you think it will take to arrive at your city?" Elsa asked, blowing out a long plume of white as she breathed into the frosty air. "Uh... A couple of days at the most." Jack said, smiling down on Elsa. She gazed back up at him, and he suddenly laughed and turned his head away- straightening his tousled white fringe with his fingers. "What's the matter?" Elsa asked- pulling him to face her by his faded blue jumper. The pair paused and I jerked backwards so as to not ruin the moment. Jack turned around and looked into Elsa's icy blue eyes. "Nothing, Elsa. You just...." He paused- gently tugging her braid. "You look so pretty." Jack blurted hurriedly, before his Snow- white cheeks flushed pink and he strode off ahead in a brisk walk. Elsa hung back- her own cheeks pink. "Okay..." I giggled- and Soon Elsa was laughing too, leaning against me and wrapping her arm around my shoulders. "Come on- little princess. Don't be mean to Jack." Elsa said, ruffling my hair so my braids rumpled up into odd knots and hung heavily on my shoulders. "Come on then. We'll be there soon, and maybe.... Maybe we can visit mum and dad one last time."