Yeah, yeah, I know it's not the final chapter of Fortune's Fool, but that's almost finished, I swear. Just needs the right touches and it'll be good to go.

Anyway, this is something that has been gathering dust for a while. I took it, gave it a quick polish and rebuild and voila! Another story!

Yes, I am purposly trying to write in the style of A.A, Milne. I find that Winnie-the-Pooh's stories in this way works well, but you be the judge. Right now, I'm off to catch some zz's.

Enjoy the first (and admittedly short) chapter of Life Never Dies.


Chapter One: In Which Emily Gets An Early Birthday Present

A funeral for her dad was not Emily Milne's idea of a way to start her summer.

He had been sick for a while. From what, she wasn't sure. Her dad didn't really want her to be so worried. He thought that she would understand. She did… just not in the way he wanted.

Emily sat back on her quilted comforter on her bed, sighing. My thirteenth birthday is soon and Dad won't be here to see it. It was true. He'd miss the laughing and playing of games. The joy on her face as she opened presents. Her look of wishing as she blew out her candles. The-.

"Emily?" She sat up to see her Mom.

"Yeah?"

"I have something for you." Her mom walked in with a huge box. "I don't know if it's the right time, but your Dad wanted you to have these. As a birthday present." She placed the box on her bed. "I think they'll be great company for you." She walked out, not saying much more.

At first, Emily didn't want to open the box. She was afraid whatever it was would make her think of him and make her cry. No. She wouldn't cry. She had cried enough tears last week during the funeral. But she'd take a look.

Emily slowly opened the box. Inside was a set of stuffed animals.

Stuffed animals? But I'm almost thirteen! Aren't I a little old for stuffed animals?

She pulled them all out, one-by-one. There was a yellow rabbit with perfectly combed fur. A tiger with a springy tail. A donkey with a pink-bowed tail. A pig, which was the smallest of the bunch. And a soft golden bear in a red cotton shirt.

The bear's eyes twinkled at Emily. It was as if it was actually seeing her.

She gently placed the bear down and walked to her easel. On it was a black-and-white painting of a wilting rose. She felt it matched her feelings for loss. To her, it wasn't just the loss of a parent. It was the loss of color in her life. Dad….

"Why, hello, Christopher Robin!" Emily froze and turned. The golden bear was standing up on its hind legs...and was talking to her. "Christopher Robin?"

THUMP!