~Answering the Call~

A/N: Er, ok, It's 1 am right now and I'm bored, tiredish, and in need of a distraction. Anyway, here's to friends who stay up late talking to you and Christmas in all its glory!

Plot: Akari Kinamoto is 17 and not fond of Christmas. Sure, she'll put on a happy face and look giddy, but she despised the holiday as much as cat's despised water. She finds out, though, that Christmas wasn't what it was made out to be and that, with some help, she too can hear the bells, because the bell still rings for those who truly believe.


Akari yawned and checked the time again. It was roughly 10 O'clock and the last of her family members had yet to leave. You see, it was Christmas Eve and her family had, as usual, held their annual family Christmas Party. Sure her younger sister and brother had been allowed to go to bed, but, since she was 17, she had to stay up with all the other adults.

She looked around the room again from her position by the wall in a corner. As usual, most of her family ignored her and talked amongst themselves. Besides being known for not liking Christmas, she was known for pushing people away, even if she didn't mean to. She just accepted the fact and let everyone alone, not trying to convince them for the umpteenth time that she was safe to talk to.

What seemed like hours later (it was only about half an hour later really), the last of the family left and Akari went up to her room to get ready for bed. She was exhausted seeing as she was dragged out of the house to go Christmas shopping with her family and then her cousins. Then, the next day, she had to wrap presents for everyone else, seeing as she was the only one capable of doing so without messing up the wrapping paper or tearing the scissors in two. (how that happened is beyond me.)

She sighed in relief as she slipped into her bed. She hopped she would be able to sleep in, like usual. She was rudely awoken though at 11:55 by the sounds of rumbling. She recognized it as the noise a train made, but what a train was doing near her neighborhood baffled her. She threw on a sweater and walked over to the front door, opening it just as a very loud horn sounded, waking her up fully. She gaped at the train in the street in front of her. It had its name, 'The Polar Express,' printed along its side. She was startled out of her thoughts by someone calling very loudly, "All aboard!" while looking at her from the doorway into the train.

She quickly inspected the train again, blinking. It seemed a majority of the heads peeking out of the train were those of kids much younger than her. Most likely at least middle school kids.

That's when she saw it. The most beautiful face she had ever seen before. It was the only face she had seen that matched hers in age….

~To Be Continued!~

Hope you liked this chapter! Oh, and I don't own the Polar Express or any of its characters. Reviews are appreciated.