That evening, Chris had a breathing problem. He was released from the hospital with a prescription of an inhaler and some medicine. The doctors took a blood test and found scarlet fever AND tuberculosis in his system.
Martin said, "I am so glad we didn't totally neglect you, Chris."
Chris choked before he could say anything. Aviva had to shush him so he could stop coughing, "Maybe you should get some sleep... Oh, you are staying out here."
Chris lay on the hammock and fell right asleep. Aviva lay the inhaler on her desk to remind her to give it to Chris in the morning. She checked on him a few times before falling asleep to make sure no blood poured from his mouth. Instead of his thumb getting in the way, it was just saliva. Aviva rubbed the brother's shoulder a little bit to let him know she was there. Chris responded with a little moan and fell asleep.
"He's getting better, already."
The next morning Chris woke up coughing normally. Aviva snuck the inhaler in his mouth and forced the air. Chris coughed and fought the air, "I know you don't like it, but you need it!"
After a few seconds, Chris cried, "Why can't they just put it in a bottle that I can drink from?"
Aviva's smiled went from ear-to-ear, "Oh, CK!"
Chris swayed in the hammock, "uh... Aviva... This isn't too - Whoa! Aviva!"
Both of them ended up on the floor. Aviva was laughing. Chirs was on top of her. Just force against his chest made him cough.
"Hey, cover your mouth!"
Chris gagged, "How can I?! I'm on top of you with all this force!"
Aviva pulled up and pushed Chris off of her. Chris coughed and coughed.
Aviva kicked his chest with her feet. Chris instantly stopped coughing... "How did you do that?"
Aviva sat up, "I don't know. But it looks fun."
Chris froze, "Uh, oh."
Aviva laughed as Chris jerked up and ran for cover. His hammock was overturned so he retreated to his bedroom.
"Hey, Chris. I am justing fixing up your bed."
Chris stared at his bed, "It looks like you prepared my death bed!"
Laura frowned, "How?"
"I am a guy and I don't sleep in a comforter with FLOWERS on it!"
Laura laughed, "Silly! It's got green!"
"On the stems and leaves."
"Aw... Chris' bed is decorated."
Chris froze again, "Two girls against one poor innocent but sick man... MARTIN!"
Aviva smiled, "He's better."
Laura smiled, "You think?"
"You thinking what I'm thinking sis?"
"Are you thinking what I am thinking?"
Chris ran to Martin, coughing. "Laura over decorated!"
Martin finished securing something on the ceiling, "Really? What now?"
"My bed... She made my death bed."
Martin laughed, "Seriously?"
"What are you doing?"
"Oh, removing this mistle toes so you don't go nasty like yesterday."
Chris felt horrible. Why was he thinking this? "Uh... I can avoid them, somehow... I know I can... Aren't you and Laura the lvoe birds in this Tortuga?"
Martin's eyes lightened, "What has gotten into you?!"
Chris smiled, "Oh, don't be a 'I don't know what you are talking about' mood. I saw you, Martin."
"You were the ghost of Christmas Present."
Martin stared as Prideful Chris. He snorted, "What? I was asleep with Laura at midnight... Mr. Scrooge."
Chris frowned, "Then, who was you?"
"I don't know. Seriously? The Present Ghost is the eat-so-much and fat dude... Are you telling me I am fat?!"
Chris backed away, "No! You were the same size as this... Only with a huge robe!"
Martin laughed, "I have no idea what you are talking about!"
Chris thought for a second, "Okay... then, explain the zapping like the time machine. And Aviva was the ghost of Christmas Past. I felt so embarrased."
"I was what?"
Chris realized he was under a mistle toe... "Thanks Martin."
Martin laughed and pointed at Chris, "This is so funny!"
Laura said, "What?"
Chris hope no one but he or Martin knew about the mistle toe. Chris said, "Aviva, you were the ghost of Christmas Past. it was you, I know it!"
Aviva shook her head, "No way. I couldn't have! I was asleep, right Koki?"
Chris gulped, "Then, who was the creepy guy?"
"What creepy guy, bro?"
"The Christmas Ghost of the Future guy."
Aviva smiled as she soared through a book. Chris frowned, "Cheater! You were in it all along."
"No silly. I am looking for your answer. Uh, it was the death angel."
Chris froze and fell to the floor.
Martin said, "I think the Faint Angel got him."
Aviva smiled, "What's the point? Fainting under a mistle toe?"
Chris jerked, "I'm not fainted!"
Martin laughed, "Faker!"
"I am not faking!"
Aviva said, "Come on, you guys. We have a Christmas Party."
Chris groaned, "But I ruined... Like I wanted in the first place."
Aviva snorted, "Who cares that! We still have some gifts left! For you!"
Chris looked up, "But... Martin... I mean, the Present said you hated me."
Aviva couldn't help but smile a laugh.
"What's with the face, Aviva?"
Aviva laughed, "Oh, CK! How can you so foolish?! Of course, I was your Christmas Past."
Chris' jaw dropped, "Seriously!"
"Seriously. I actually invented a book machine. You insert a book and it plays out the events all the way through! But I added a few links and touches so we can go in the story."
Chris stared at Martin. Martin said, "What?"
Aviva smiled, "Jimmy was your warner. I was the Christmas Past. Martin... Martin was the Present... and uh... the Future was basically the ghost itself. No one had the guts to push you in an open grave."
Chris blushed, "So you saw it all?"
The gang stared at Chris and smiled, "Oh, we saw it all."
Chris leaned against the wall, "I made a fool of myself. But my coughing!"
"That was a quear coincidence Chris!" Exclaimed Aviva.
Chris frowned, "I am so going to get you."
Aviva smiled, "Well, I guess then you boys can't get a chance to know how it works so you can jump in books yourself."
Chris' attitude did not change, "I am not going in a book. No way, no how!"
Aviva smiled, "Explain the mistle toe."
Chris looked up. Martin exclaimed, "Got you looking!"
Chris blinked, "Darn, this isn't one." His face was upset of the trick.
The gang smiled, "But we still see it."
Martin had a huge smile, "I see it, you can't see it."
Chris froze and blushed, "What?"
Martin took a mirror and reflected Chris.
Chris gripped his head, "You sneaker!"
Martin laughed as Chris tried to yank the pole from off his shirt. but Aviva neared to kiss him. Chris was frightened so bad. Finally the pole was tossed aside but Aviva was still interested in that kiss.
"It's still on your head."
Chris gave up, "I give up! Get over with it!"
He shut his eyes, but nothing happened. Aviva murmured as she walked away, "I guess you are very get-over-with-it."
Chris sighed, "Finally... No more kisses!"
That evening, Chris felt half asleep on the ramp of the Tortuga. It stopped snowing, but he was still sleeping. Aviva saw him lay quiet and still and quickly checked on him.
Chris woke up when she reached for his pulse, "What are you doing?"
"You were lying still, Chris. Need to make sure you are okay."
Chris groaned as he sat up. Aviva was upset by her disturbance in Chris' presence.
"I am sleeping in my own bed, tonight. I can take my own med- Aviva..."
Aviva ignored Chris, "Go ahead. You claim to take care of yourself."
Chris went into the Tortuga half happy, but half concerned why Aviva ignored him. He decided to spy on her. She was bundling herself with her body. He heard muffled cries.
"Aviva... Why are you crying?"
Aviva wiped her tears quickly, "I am not crying."
"Yes, you are."
"*Sighs* I just want to be happy with you... But you rather be alone."
Chris sat down next to the girl. He smiled, "Well, really if it weren't for your invention... I would be still Mr. Scrooge and snuck in my room."
Aviva sighed, "I know."
"I am surprised. How did you manage to fix it to my past, present, and future."
"Well, the weird thing is, I didn't. It just came up. I wasn't expecting to see... us as babies."
Chris smiled at the shy girl, "You were kinda... no! Beautiful as a baby."
"Why think? I saw you."
Aviva smiled, "Oh, Chris..."
Chris continued, "What about the fight at Chrsitmas?"
"That wasn't mine either. It's like all about Scrooge was you. His past, and stuff were erased to your past and stuff. This was totally unexpected."
Chris answered, "So the present and the future weren't your doing?"
"It wasn't, Chris. I was surprised myself, believe it or not. I felt sorry that I invented it when you 'died'."
Chris scooted over closer to Aviva. Soon they were side by side. Chris said, "I guess..."
Aviva looked up at him, "Guess what?"
"I was saying about your invention... Say, isn't it getting colder?"
"it is. Let's get inside and shut the ship down for the night."
Chris followed the girl around until the Tortuga was finally shut down. At bedtime, Aviva handed him the inhaler and she retired quietly.
Chris looked at the inhaler. He smiled before he put the thing to his mouth, "Aviva," The forced air choked him as he tried to hold his breath.
"You can do it all by yourself?"
Chris gasped, "I guess I do... need a little more help."
Aviva took the inhaler and put it on her desk, "One tonight. Here's your liquid medicine."
Chris took the spoon and sucked the medicine in... "Wait! it's honey."
"Shhh... I know. The doctor recommended it."
Chris licked his lips, "That stuff is good!"
Aviva washed the spoon. She chuckled as Chris enjoyed the after taste, "Go get some sleep, Chris."
Chris blinked, "Where?"
Aviva smirked, "In your 'death bed'."
Chris' face dropped, "Seriously? Those flowers make me sick."
Aviva dried her hands and said, "Listen, uh-" She noticed that Martin had hid another mistle toe. She said to herself, 'This boy cannot escape them!'
"Oh, uh... I don't know. But that comforter might be heavy enough to keep you warm."
When the girl turned away to get a drink, Chris looked up and frowned and the second or third mistle toe. He shrugged his shoudlers, the girl needed some cheering up.
Aviva drinked her milk, "Well?"
She stared at Chris, "You are supposed to be in bed?"
"I'm not tired."
Aviva sighed as she put her cup in the sink, "You are not going to stay up all night, Chris."
Chris wished for the time, "I know..."
Aviva looked at Chris. The corner of her eye saw the mistle toe. She turned her head away and washed her cup, "Go to bed, Chris."
Chris took a deep breath, "I know you saw it."
Aviva looked up, "What?"
Chris raised an eyebrow, "You know. That up above me."
"Liar. I saw it when you went to get a drink."
Aviva dried her hands again, "But you'll fight me."
"That was hours ago... This is... the present."
Aviva smiled, "I think you changed too sudden."
"Hey, you want me to go to bed... How can I, if this thing is over me?"
Aviva smiled as she walked nearer, "Are you sure?"
Chris couldn't help but smile, "Hey, you need some cheering up."
Aviva rested her hand on his shoulder. She shook her head, "You'll going to fight..."
Chris took her chin and kissed her lips. Aviva was surprised but shut her eyes and sucked in his kiss.
"What on earth are you two doing?"
Chris jumped back, "Martin!"
Aviva blushed as she scratched her neck, "It's your stupid mistle toes, Martin."
Martin laughed, "I forgot that one! Even I forgive where I hide stuff! Feel better, Chris?"
Chris was red as an apple, "I guess..."
Aviva scolded the boys, "You two get off to bed before I turn on the Christmas Carol again!"
Martin laughed as he and Chris scattered to Chris' room, "You kissed her?
"What do you think?"
"Duh. Aviva has been the one to kiss you. Did you kiss her?"
Chris blushed, "Let's just get to bed before the Ghost of Love's Past come."
Martin laughed, "Scaredy Kratt!"
"Chris and Martin Kratt."
Both brothers stood, shocked. A ghost came out, "I am come to warn you of love!"