Based on Hans Christian Anderson's The Snow Queen.
The years had melted away, since the summer had come. Time is a deceptive thing, trickling past first like a gently burbling stream; then suddenly, a roaring to batter down dams. One moment everything in perfect, crystalline clarity - the next, eternity gone to meltwater.
Kay had grown strong and tall and beautiful alongside her, his smile melting the edges of their home even in the winter months. Not a single snowflake left in him, not anymore. Gerda had melted him to the core. He dotes on her now, treats her more preciously than any queen. And she is happy. Surely, this is happiness.
"Don't you think, little one, that you might have been wrong?"
She has but to close her eyes, and there it is, like a whistle of wind through the snow-muffled silence of her mind.
Perhaps, she posits in her most secret thoughts, perhaps it is the smallest of shards of ice - not more than the smallest splinter. Perhaps in all the swirl of their dancing on that day, all those years ago, this splinter had drifted down right into her ear. Not enough to freeze her soul, not really; but enough that she could never shake off the chill. She cannot get warm, since that day. She cannot be satisfied. And the whispering voice of winter follows her where ever she goes.
"You could have had eternity."
"Liar," Gerda whispers back. "Your eternity is a lie."
"You could have stayed. You could have frozen to eternal perfection with your little Kay, and worn dresses sewn from spun diamonds, with crystal flowers for your hair, and had iced sugar candies to melt sweet on your tongue."
"Those are ridiculous things," says Gerda. "I don't want them. I am not a child anymore."
"Oh?" Pale pink lips curl into a smile behind her eyes, on that perfect white face carved from ice. "And yet here you are, the dutiful daughter, the good wife, docile as any child. You came such a long way, just a little girl, all on her own; with such strength you could have had anything..." There is a cold brush of snow against Gerda's skin; the caress of icy fingers along her jaw; the kiss of petal-soft lips against her cheek. Chill breath trickles in her ear, and she shudders. "Anything in the whole world. And all you took for yourself was one sweet little boy, one little boy to be your master in all things."
"That's not..." says Gerda, stricken. "That's not how it is!"
"Poor, foolish little Gerda. You could have had me."
"I don't want you!" Gerda cries.
But now there is a long and elegant hand slipping between her legs, and her thighs are falling open, even as she denies it; cold, cold fingers are pressing into her flesh, burning as only ice can burn. She jerks up into the touch with a gasp.
Laughter, sweet and silvery as breaking glass: "Liar."
And she wakes, shivering, tears drying on her cheeks, her desire damp on her thighs. She presses her legs tightly together against the ache, clutching at herself, muffling her face with her pillow to stifle her sobs.