'Tis the Season...

Disclaimers: I do not own Van Helsing or any of the characters concerning said movie. I do own my imagination, my plot, and the rights to my own characters... *shifty eyes*

Anna takes Van Helsing and Carl ice skating. Sort of a pointless, cheery one-shot, set as if Dracula is vanquished BUT Anna is still around. Merry Christmas, everyone!

"I'm not so sure about this..."

"Oh, come on, Carl," said Anna, grinning mischieviously. "It's not that hard."

"Easy for you to say!" said the friar, miffed. "You've been skating for how long?"

"Longer than you have, for sure," said Anna. "Van Helsing, don't even think about sneaking away. I've got a pair of skates for you, too." She held up the black ice skates. "Come here."

Van Helsing sighed and joined her on the bench beside the lake's edge. "And why, may I ask, are we doing this?"

"Because it is fun. Not because we're going to kill each other." Anna already had her own white skates on and laced, and waited patiently as he tried to figure out the lacing. Finally she asked, "Have you ever been skating before, Van Helsing?"

"Not that I can remember." He stood shakily, testing his balance. "How in hell do these things work?"

Anna led him out onto the ice, and showed him. "Like this. Push, and glide. Push, and glide. Yes, that's it... Carl, open your eyes."

Carl muttered rudely under his breath and opened his eyes, skating carefully along the edge. That way, if he fell, he'd land in the snowbank and not on the ice.

Speaking of falling...

Van Helsing missed a step and slipped, falling flat on his back.

"Are you all right?" asked Anna, holding out a hand.

He took it, and she pulled him up. "Oh, yes, I'm fine. Sore, but fine." The hunter brushed himself off, keeping on hand on Anna's arm for balance.

"Are you sure?"

"Yes, Anna." He tried again, this time managing to keep his balance. Anna stayed next to him for a few minutes, making sure he was all right, before skating off to persuade Carl to move away from the snowbank.

Van Helsing watched her teach Carl how to balance, wishing he could stay. But the Order would be expecting them back soon...

"Van Helsing, why are you so sad?" asked Anna, skating up before him.

The hunter sighed. "Because we have to leave."

"Why? Why must you leave? Do you not like it here?"

"Anna, I would stay anywhere if I could stay with you..." Van Helsing looked away, feeling ashamed. "The Order wants us back."

"Oh, Van Helsing..." Anna gave him a tentative hug, careful not to knock him over. "The Order does not live your life for you. It is your life. Not theirs, not anyone else's. Yours. Do you understand me?"

"I most certainly do," said Van Helsing, then he kissed her.

Carl sighed loudly, and when they didn't seem to notice, he skated wobblingly across to the bench and sat down, stretching out his legs. "Life just got a whole lot less interesting," he said mournfully.

"Why is that?" said a familiar voice behind him.

The friar spun around. "Oh!"

"Hi," said the barmaid, smiling prettily. "Remember me?"

"Only every other minute," said Carl.

Well, use your imagination. You know what happens next; the whole wedding business... The Order was not happy when they got the telegram about the double wedding. Not in the least.

But all's well that ends well.

Usually.