That night it seemed like Misty's mood had finally been made better. Ash was extremely happy to see her sitting relaxed next to the fire, holding a steaming cup of cocoa. She was laughing at Brock's story about his last encounter with a Nurse Joy, which he had botched, as usual. Ash smiled at his friends and sat down next to Misty.

"Hey, so I see you're feeling better."

"Yeah," Misty replied in a contented tone, "I guess the Christmas spirit is getting to me." Surrounded by his friends and family on Christmas Eve, Ash felt as if everything was perfect. He put his arm behind Misty on the fireplace, aching to move it closer, around her shoulders, but too afraid of making his... crush too obvious.

Misty smiled and scooted over closer to Ash, glad to have him near her. If she couldn't be with her sisters, at least she got to be with him. And anyway, what girl doesn't want to spend Christmas with the guy she likes? She should be ecstatic. Unfortunately, she had never decided what to give him as a present. She had thought about it all day and hadn't been able to come up with anything.

The group sat by the fire for many hours, singing Christmas carols, exchanging gifts, and playing games. At midnight they decided it was time they get to bed, and everyone went upstairs and headed towards their respective bedrooms. As Ash walked down the hall towards his room, he passed by Misty's door. He looked inside to see her getting ready for bed.

"Pikachu!" (Stop spying!) yelled Pikachu. Misty heard this and turned around, blushing as she realized that Ash had been watching her.

"Ash!" she shrieked, "I could have been changing!"

"Well then maybe you should have closed the door!" he said stubbornly. Misty glared at him, then walked over and shut the door in his face.

"Merry Christmas!" she said angrily. Ash sighed at his predicament. This was not a good way to end the night. Hopefully she would like his Christmas present to her. Or, what would be his present to her if he could ever figure out how to get to Cerulean City. He would stay up all night if he had to! He would figure this out!

Jessie, James, and Meowth all leaned back against the wall inside the Pokemon Center.

"Wow," said Meowth, "I never knowed snow could be so tasty!"

"Well, it is my mother's recipe!" Jessie declared proudly.

Team Rocket had just spent the last three hours stuffing themselves with Jessie's favorite meal - Snowgasbord. It had consisted of snow onigiri with snow sauce, sushi-snow rolls, snow potatoes with sour cream and soy sauce, and snow pudding for dessert.

"It was so nice to have a nice, cold, home cooked meal." James said as he yawned. "All that food's making me sleepy."

"Snowgasbord can do that to you." Jessie said tiredly. She leaned her head onto James's shoulder, and began to snore.

"Goodnight, Jessica."

"Goodnight yous two." Meowth purred as he curled up on the ground.

The next morning Ash awoke in a great mood, albeit extremely exhausted. At about 3 o'clock last night, after much thinking, help from Pikachu, and lots of cookies (to help him stay awake, of course) Ash had finally come up with a solution. He got up and changed into his normal clothing, then he and Pikachu went downstairs to the kitchen, where Misty, Brock, and Delia were eating breakfast.

"Hey sleeping beauty." Misty taunted. "Someone must've been up late last night." Ash rubbed his eyes and sat down, ignoring her comment.

"I saw that your light was still on last night at 1." his mother added. "What were you doing?"

"I was just working on something." Ash replied slyly. Then he stuffed some food in his mouth to avoid any further questions.

After breakfast, Ash decided it was time to give Misty her present. "Hey, Mist. Come with me real fast." He grabbed her hand and ran up the stairs with her. When they reached the window at the end of the hall, he stopped and opened it.

"Ash, what are we doing?" Misty asked, very confused at this point.

"Look outside." Misty looked and saw that the snow was up to the window where they were standing.

"Okay... What am I looking at?"

"Well, the snow is piled up all the way to the window. And with the amount we got, it should be pretty hard packed." Ash climbed out the window and onto the giant snow drift. And he was right! The snow was packed down enough that he could stand on top of it! "Come on out, Misty!" Misty gingerly climbed through the window and walked to where Ash was standing.

"What are we doing out here?"

Instead of answering her, he yelled "Go, Lapras!" and threw a Pokeball.

"Ash, I don't understand what we're doing."

"Remember when we were on Mikan Island, and I had to do those contests with Cissy? Well, I figured if I could ride Lapras's ice beam on the water, we could do the same thing again now on the snow, all the way to Cerulean City! It would probably be even faster than walking!" Ash explained, then looked over at Misty. She had teared up and was currently beaming at Ash.

"You did this for me?"

"Yeah, of course. I know how much it meant to you to see your sisters today, so I figured it out."

"Man, that must have been really hard for you. All that thinking!"

"Hey! You have to be nice to me! Or you're staying here!"

"You could never leave me behind." Misty declared flirtaciously.

Ash blushed, and unable to think of anything else to say, just agreed with her. "You're right. Let's go!"

They climbed on Lapras's back, and prepared for the ride. "Lapras! Ice beam!" he yelled. Lapras opened her mouth, where a spinning blue ball appeared. She shot it out in front of them, and a path of ice appeared across the snow. Lapras jumped up onto it and pushed herself along with her flippers. As they slid across the ice they began to pick up speed, eventually going faster than a car! They sped towards Cerulean City, laughing and talking as they went.

When team Rocket awoke from their naps, they decided they had to get out of the Pokemon Center. They were all starving (because, believe it or not, Snowgasbord doesn't really fill you up all that well), cold, and sick of being stuck in the same building. They climbed up to the second story, opened up a window, and looked out. On the outskirts of the town they saw a small restaurant on a hill that was open!

"James! We're saved!" cried Jessie happily. All three Rocket members began to push and shove trying to get out of the open first. They all managed to push themselves through at the same time, but because were so tangled up, they feel onto the ground in a heap. Meowth was the first to get up, and immediately started running towards the restaurant. He looked behind him at Jessie and James, and a little ways behind them saw ASh and Misty sitting on Lapras's back, about to leave the town.

"Hey! It's two of the twoips!" he yelled, pointing. Jessie and James jumped up and spun around to see Lapras take off down her ice road. "Get em!"

"No, Meowth!" James said, grabbing him before he could get any closer to Ash and Misty. "Just look at the two of them. They're adorable. And we've been waiting for the to get together for years!"

"It's so obvious that they love each other. Maybe this will be their chance. I mean, just look at them." Jessie gestured to Misty's arms, which were fastened tightly around Ash's middle.

"You're right..." admitted Meowth. Then he scratched James's face and jumped down into the snow. "But I'm gonna be the first one to that restaurant!"

After about an hour of sledding along the ice, Misty realized they had almost reached their destination. At this point Lapras was going quite fast, and it was hard for Ash and Misty to talk over the wind.

"We're getting close to Cerulean!" Misty yelled to Ash, as she held on to him tightly around his stomach. "We need to slow down."

Lapras wasn't pushing anymore, but they had picked up so much speed on their journey that they were going much too fast. Lapras put her fins down onto the ice to try and stop them, but they weren't slowing down quickly enough. Cerulean got closer and closer, and lapras was hardly slowing down at all. They rode over edge of the city limits, passing by the roofs of houses, and getting closer and closer to the gym.

"This isn't working!" Ash yelled frantically. "Lapras! Jump off the ice!" The Pokemon leaped off the track she had been making, and fell headfirst into the snow. Because Ash and Misty hadn't been holding onto anything, they both flew off of Lapras's back and crashed into a snowdrift 10 feet away. Ash landed first, but Misty landed soon after, right on top of him.

"Owwwwwwwww." Ash moaned, body aching from the impact and Misty hitting him.

"Oh my god, Ash, are you okay?" She scrambled off of him and pulled him up out of the snow. "I'm so, so sorry. I couldn't control where I landed, I swear!"

"It's okay Misty, I'm fine." ASh assured her. He stood up, holding his back, and then stretched. Misty heard a loud pop coming from his spine, which couldn't be good, but Ash didn't seem to notice. He ran over to Lapras and hugged her neck. "Thank you so much for your help." He looked her over, and nothing seemed to be wrong, so he pulled out a Pokeball. "You did great. Have a nice rest. Return!" Then he turned to Misty. "Ready?" She nodded, and they walked up to the gym. The first floor was completely hidden, but the living room was on the second floor. They walked over to that window, and could see Lily, Daisy, and Violet sitting inside. Misty smiled and knocked on the glass separating them. All three of her sisters spun around in their seats, and immediately broke into grins. Violet ran up to the window and threw it open as fast as she could, then swooped her younger sister into a hug.

"Misty!" the other two squealed and ran over to see her. They helped her and Ash in the window, and then sat both of them down in front of the fire to warm up.

"So, Daisy asked, "like, how did you and your boyfriend, like, get here?"

"For the last time, he's not my boyfriend!" Misty yelled.

"For the last time?" Lisy teased, "Does that mean next time we see you-?"

"No!" Misty face was red with embarrassment and anger at this point, and Lily went quiet.

"Sorry sis." Violet said. "We're just kidding. But like, really, how did you get here?"

"We rode here on Ash's Lapras." Misty explained. "It was genius!" Ash blushed at her remark, and looked away from her sisters' smirking faces.

"Well, Runt, we're like, so glad you're here." Lily said, as sweetly as she could manage.

"Sorry to interrupt," Ash started, "but I'm actually gonna head home. I really want to spend today with my mom." and then as an afterthought, "And Brock, of course." Misty wasn't happy to see him go, but she understood how he felt.

"You know what? You two say goodbye. We three," Daisy said, gesturing to Lily, Violet, "have to go downstairs for a minute to like... check on the Pokemon. Yeah."

"What do you mean? We don't have t-" Lily started, until she was elbowed in the ribs by Violet, who shot her a look saying 'Just go with it!'

"Ohhhhh. Right. Pokemon." Lily said. "Let's go." The three older sisters giggled as they walked

out of the room and towards the stairs leading down to the main area of the gym.

"Well, uh, I guess I'll just-" Ash started, but was cut off by Misty.

"Wait! Thank you so much for helping me get home. It means so much to me. And... I still have a present for you." Ash brightened up at this.

"Really? What is it?" Misty just blushed and moved closer to him. "Mist? What are you-" He didn't get to finish his question, because at that moment Misty leaned forward and pressed her lips against his. It only lasted a second, but Ash decided it was one of the best things that had ever happened to him. As soon as Misty pulled away, a blush prominent on her cheeks, Ash grabbed her hand and pulled her back towards him. "I liked your present." he said nervously, but in a way that you could tell he was barely containing his excitement. And then he kissed her again.

Misty put her arms around his neck, and he wrapped his around her waist. They stayed like that for a while, until Ash finally pulled away and smiled at his best friend.

"I have to go now. But as soon as the snow goes back down, Brock and I will head straight here. And then, if you want... we could make this a more common occurrence?" he asked nervously.

Misty kissed him one last time, then replied "Yes, please!" They moved away from each other, both sporting huge smiles on their faces, extremely pleased at what had just happened. Ash went to the window, opened it and climbed out.

"Bye, Ash! See you soon."

"Bye, Misty." he said and started to close the window. He got it halfway down and then stopped, and popped his head back inside.

"Hey Mist?"

"Yes, Ash?"

"I love you."