A LIGHT CAROL: A KIM POSSIBLE WINTER'S TALE

PART ONE

CHAPTER ONE
"PROLOGUE—A NIGHT VISITOR"

Kim woke suddenly, her heart pounding and hair standing on end. Ordinarily, outfighting half a dozen henchmen gave her an adrenaline rush, but being caught off her guard in the privacy of her own bedroom was a very different thing. A shadow seemed to float across the room towards her. As she tensed and then relaxed her muscles, calculating the best angle of attack, she heard her name spoken softly, "Possible San, it is me, Yori."

"Yori!" Kim fell back on her pillow, both relieved and peeved. She turned on her lamp. "Couldn't this wait until Ron arrives in the morning? And please call me Kim."

"I am sorry to have startled you, Kim, but what I must say is for you alone." Yori knelt beside the nightstand; she stared intently at the prom picture of Kim in her burned dress, holding hands with Ron in his powder blue tuxedo.

"OK, Yori, spill," said Kim.

"Sensei senses great trials awaiting you and Stoppable San."

"So not the drama," said Kim, still miffed. "That's pretty much what we do on a weekly basis, remember?"

"Your paths," Yori continued undeterred, "will part from each other. Yours will lead you to confront fears that blind your inner sight. You must conquer them in order to bring your path back into harmony with Stoppable San's."

"What are you talking about?" asked Kim.

"I can only say that you must trust yourself and Stoppable San," said Yori.

This made no sense to Kim. "What about Ron?" She wanted to know why Yori didn't visit Ron as well, but then decided this strikingly beautiful ninja shouldn't drop in on her boyfriend unannounced.

"Stoppable San must also confront and conquer fears that blind him from understanding the full potential of his inner strength."

"Just what exactly is it that you and your Sensei see in Ron?" Kim asked.

"You must ask this of me, Possible San?"

Kim heard an edge of criticism in Yori's voice. "Ron has been my best friend since we were little kids—I know underneath he's brave and loyal. He's also funny and creative, and…I think I love him."

"We honor our ancestors. I am descended from a great sorceress and shaman named Himiko, as is Hannah," Yori began to explain.

"OK. So how does Ron fit in with your, uh, thing with the ancestors?" Kim wondered.

"Stoppable San's ancestors are very important; they are part of who he is. Do you know the story of the Maccabees, who are honored in the winter festival Stoppable San calls Hanukkah? About twenty-two centuries ago, about the same time in history as Himiko, an evil king threatened to destroy the Jewish people in Palestine. A family of great warriors led by a priest named Mattathias and his son, Judah Maccabee, revolted and saved their people. Their blood runs in the family of Stoppable San. He will defend those he loves with courage, strength, and ingenuity. The Mystical Monkey Spirit recognizes that which is already in him and complements it, like a sword and sheath."

Kim was stunned. "Ron? My Ron?"

"Yes, Possible San, your Ron is also a great warrior, just like his best friend, as you say in your American style understatement."

The alarm buzzed. Kim reached to turn it off; when she turned around again, Yori had disappeared. How does she do that? It'd be nice if Ron could master that particular ninja skill on their missions.