Jack and Pitch lunged at each other. Jack formed an ice blade in his right hand and Pitch sent a stream of sand to counter. Pitch shoved Jack, which bought him some time to form a blade of his own. A sleek black dagger just like the one he had threatened EJ with. They both lunged, ice and onyx clashed. The Guardians snapped out of their reverie and went to help Jack. A deep rumble came from the Pitch's lair. Nightmares busted through the windows and sprung over the roof, heading straight for the others. A few jumped over Jack and Pitch as they fought.

"Having fun, Guardians? I know I am." Pitch shouted happily over the roar of hooves hitting the ground. A Nightmare rushed past Jack by an inch and hesitated. It turned on Jack, its red eyes glowing, and lunged. It dug its teeth into Jack's left shoulder. Jack screamed in pain as the dull teeth cut through his hoodie and skin. Jack swiftly shoved the knife into the Nightmare's stomach. It exploded in a puff of black sand. Jack gritted his teeth and gripped his shoulder, glaring at Pitch.

"You look horrible, Jack." Pitch sneered. He faked a jab and hooked a toe around the back of Jack's ankle. He pulled swiftly and Jack fell onto his back. The air rushed out of his lungs and stars danced across his vision. Pitch looked down at him and smirked.

"Are you finally scared, Jack?" Pitch asked, sounding bored. This was getting old fast. Jack tried to glare through the haze but it didn't work.

"Never." Jack choked out. Pitch smirked even more and trailed his blade across Jack's cheek. Jack's eyes flared with pain as the blood came to the surface. He sucked in a deep breath and tried to shut out the roaring inferno that was pain.

"Jack!" Jamie screamed from somewhere around him. Jack turned his head towards the sound and smiled. At least he's still alive. Jack thought happily. Jamie would be okay after all this, right? Jack looked back up at Pitch.

"If I stop fighting would you let them all live?" Jack asked. Pitch looked down at him in pity and grinned.

"Of course, Jack. Even little Jamie will be left alone." Pitch promised. Jack's body visibly relaxed and Pitch raised his weapon.

"Darkness can't win, not if you have others who actually care about you." Jack said, sounding as if he had been saying it over and over in his head and accidentally said it out loud. Jack's eyes suddenly focused on Pitch. "You must have been a sad soul before you became the Boogeyman." Pitch growled and fixed his grip on his blade.

"Jack!" Jamie yelled again. Jack kept staring at the weapon hovering over him. A small smile crept onto his face, as if content of these events.

"Don't worry, Jamie. Someday you'll understand." Jack said quietly. Jack, what are you doing? EJ asked worriedly. Pitch growled and the blade found its target. Jack's heart. No one made a sound, not even the Nightmares. The Guardians looked on in horror at the dying Jack, a fatal amount of blood soaking his once blue hoodie. Jack coughed and blood trickles out of the corner of his mouth. Pitch twists the blade in the wound but Jack barely feels it. He feels so numb, not even the coldest snow makes him feel this way.

"Jack, oh God, Jack!" Jamie and EJ yelled at the same time. Tooth is crying while hugging Jamie, Bunny and North are silent. But Sandy looks calm as can be, as if he knows an inside secret.

Come on, Jack. Don't die on me. EJ whispered with a sob, he's crying. Jack tries to hold onto that voice but it slips from his mind, like sand through his fingers. He faintly remembers Sandy and his pretty golden sand, uncorrupted, unlike Pitch's. Images fly by at a frightful speed and he tries to grasp all of them but it's impossible. They whizz by like bullets from a gun. Then one stopped before him and two hands shot out of it. At first he resisted but the hands are warm and firm and determined. Then they pulled him into a warm embrace and he let everything go.

-o-

Jack looked around at the white room he had grown used to. Only this time a large black mass was in the corner. He drew in a deep breath and a spasm of pain hit his chest. He gripped his chest and nearly fell over.

"Oh god, are you okay?" EJ asked as he helped steady Jack. Jack pushed him away and glared.

"Why didn't you just let me die? Why is it so important that I live?" Jack was hysteric from all the blood loss. EJ looked at him for a long moment then a tear slid down his cheek. Jack looked at him and the fog lifted from his mind and he realized what he had said.

"I'm sorry, EJ." Jack whispered. The black mass in the corner stirred and formed into an actual figure. He looked just like Jack only he had red eyes. Jack was confused. Who was this?

"Hey Jack. It's so nice to actually meet you." He sneered. Jack noticed he kind of talked like Pitch.

"Who are you?" Jack asked as he gritted his teeth against a small wave of pain. Red-eyed Jack gave a toothy grin and waved his hand, shaking off the question. EJ gripped Jack's arm even tighter.

"Please," EJ pleaded to the red-eyed foe, "Can you help him?" Red-eyed Jack whipped his head towards EJ. Anger rose up in his blood red eyes.

"Why should I? What has he ever done for me?" Red-eyed Jack nearly shouted as his rage took control. He stepped forward to hit EJ but Jack leapt in front of him and took the hit. Normally, Jack wouldn't fall when he got slapped but it was a strong hit and he was weak with pain. He collapsed into a heap on the floor, gripping his shirt like his heart was exploding. EJ glared at the truly evil side of Jack and knelt beside the real Jack. Through all the pain Jack glared at red-eyed Jack.

"I don't want your help anyway." Jack spit out as EJ helped him up. Red-eyed Jack raised an eyebrow and grinned evilly. He walked towards Jack until he was right in front of him, he waved EJ away. Jack winced and, even though he didn't want to, grabbed onto red-eyed Jack's arm. Then Jack's legs gave out and he sank to his knees, still glaring at his other personality. Red-eyed Jack used a thumb and index finger on Jack's chin to keep his head in place.

"Do you wish to die so badly?" Red-eyed Jack asked quietly. Jack's look softened and he shook his head. "I thought so. You wouldn't leave Jamie all alone with Pitch roaming around. Heck, even I wouldn't do that to the poor boy. But no, you just had to give up your life, you didn't even fight to the end, you just laid there. If you die, who will bring snow to the world?" Jack's eyes widened at the last sentence. They were so similar to the ones Bunny had said the night he had come back...home. Jack's eyesight fogged up, he hadn't realized he had started to cry until a small sob escaped his throat.

"Please, I just want to protect everybody." Jack pleaded. Red-eyed Jack nodded and leaned in close to Jack's face.

"I'm gonna have to use you for awhile." He whispered in Jack's ear.

-o-

Pitch laughed, his voice rough and harsh, and pulled the blade out of Jack's dead body. He turned towards the others and savored the looks of disgust and horror on their faces. Then he looked at the blade for a second or two before it melted away into thin air.

"And thus the era of Jack Frost ends." Pitch said audaciously. He turned to the Guardians. Now that he had gotten rid of Jack he could do whatever he wanted, right? He eyed the young boy, the youth stared at him with big brown eyes. He looked for any sign of fear in them, like any normal boy would have. But all he saw was anger, a burning hatred that a young boy of his age shouldn't have. Pitch grinned and stepped towards Jamie, then he felt something on his ankle that stopped him in his tracks. He looked down and saw a white hand clutching his ankle in a death grip. Jack's arm was the source but he still looked like he was dead.

"Got something to say, Jackie-boy?" Pitch looked at Jack's face, looking for any movement, there was none. He stepped back towards Jack and took a better look at the wound in Jack's chest. There was none. Pitch did a double take just as Jack's eyes shot open, blood red and really angry. He sat up and gripped Pitch's face, fingers splayed widely. Ice formed on Pitch's face and froze his features, almost to his eyes. Pitch let out a startled growl and pushed him away. Then nightmare sand hit Jack in the side and he went flying. Right when he was about to hit the ground gold sand cushioned his fall. He looked around and realized the others were surrounding him. They were so excited that he wasn't dead. Jack stood up and brushed himself off. He looked down at Jamie and smiled.

"Don't remember him like this Jamie, okay?" Jack asked. Jamie looked at him through watery eyes. Then Jamie hugged him, hard. It took the wind out of him and he felt Jamie nod against his stomach. Jamie pulled back and wiped his eyes. Red-eyed Jack shook it off and looked for Sandy. The golden guardian floated up to him and formed a picture above his head. It was a head with a finger pointing towards its temple, a knowing gesture. Jack nodded and leaned in to whisper in Sandy's ear. After a few seconds Jack pulled away and Sandy nodded.

"Picking on kids now are we?" Jack asked Pitch. Pitch was shaking with rage.

"How are you not dead? You were dead! I killed you!" Pitch screamed in rage. His nightmare sand rose up behind him and shot forward. Jack ran at Pitch and the nightmare sand swooped down. Jack created a blade and sliced through the corrupted sand. The sand started to form on the blade and it dissolved into nothing. The sand split open and Pitch reached out and grabbed Jack's throat. He pulled Jack close. Jack hit Pitch's hand with one of his own, making Pitch let go. Then he punched Pitch in the face. Jack grabbed Pitch's arms, making sure he didn't get away. Jack snarled at him.

"Let's go out the same way we came. The light." Jack said playfully. He looked in Sandy's direction and gave a nod, Sandy returned it. Sandy raised his arms as he lifted into the air. Golden sand shot out from behind him and headed in Jack and Pitch's direction. Pitch followed his gaze and his eyes widened. He understood what was going on and he was now struggling against Jack's grip. It didn't even falter, he was content with what was going to happen. Pitch's eyes were filled with fear as Jack smiled cruelly at him. In a matter of seconds they were both enveloped in a sphere of gold sand, nightmare sand shrank away from its glow.

"Don't be stupid, Jack." Pitch's voice was disbelieving, "Doing this will kill you too." Jack smiled and shook his head slowly. He looked Pitch straight in the eye.

"I'm not Jack, I'm my own person. I can make my own decisions." He said as the sand attached to their skin and clothes. Pitch grunted as the light sand sank into the skin on his hand. It slowly dissolved the skin and all that was left was the skeleton underneath. Pitch's eyes widened and he gasped loudly. Jack shook him and grunted as the sand landed in his eyes, they flickered blue.

"And unlike you, I care about others." Jack hissed and the sand shot at them, collapsing over them, suffocating them. The sand flowed through their minds, cleansing them of darkness. Soon they were doused in the light and the ball of sand exploded. Jack's body fell to the ground, limp. Pitch was nowhere to be found, nothing was left of him.

Jamie ran to Jack. "Jack! Please be okay!" Jamie shook Jack's shoulder roughly. Jamie was scared that Jack was gone for good this time. Then Jack's eyes fluttered open and Jamie trapped him in an unbreakable hug. Jack gasped and wrapped an arm around Jamie's back. Jamie pulled back a little.

"What's wrong?" Jamie asked curiously. Jack smiled a little but he looked confused.

"I have an ache in my chest. Why is that?" Jack asked. Jamie helped Jack to his feet and the others gathered around.

"You don't remember what happened?" Tooth asked with a sniffle. She had been crying the entire time. Jack looked at her and stepped forward. He smiled and hugged her.

Welcome back, Jack. EJ said softly. Jack smiled even bigger. He wasn't sad that the red-eyed personality of his was gone but he felt a tiny hole in his heart. He pushed that from his mind and focussed on the people he cared about. He pulled away from Tooth and picked up Jamie, setting him on his hip.

"So how are you? School going good?" Jack asked playfully to Jamie. Jamie smiled and punched him lightly in the shoulder. Then he hugged Jack for the umpteenth time that day.

"Is Pitch really gone?" Jamie asked, looking at all of them. North stepped forward and put a hand on Jamie's shoulder. He smiled a goofy smile but his eyes were a tad bit serious.

"For now, yes. But he could be back in any way, shape, or form." North said. Jamie hugged Jack tighter and then everyone came in to hug Jack.

"Glad you're back to normal, Frostbite." Bunny teased. Jack glared at this.

"Me too, Kangaroo." Jack teased then stuck out his tongue childishly. Bunny balled up his fists and scowled.

"Why I oughta!" Bunny said. They glared at each other for awhile then they burst out laughing. Bunny put a paw on Jack's shoulder and smiled.

"Why did you bring Jamie here? He could have gotten hurt!" Jack nearly yelled at Bunny. Bunny held up his paws in defense. "So why did you bring him?"

"I thought that if you saw him when you were in...that state...you would return to normal. It didn't necessarily work but that doesn't matter. He's safe now." Jack glared for a couple of seconds then it drained from his face. He smiled and rubbed his chest. When he looked at his hand it was covered in blood, he looked at his chest but there was nothing. The blood had come from his hoodie.

"Come on! I loved this hoodie." He said absentmindedly. North let out a bellowing laugh and they all joined in. Jack looked at Jamie. Jack had that spark of fun and happiness in his eye that Jamie always looked forward to during the winter. Jack noticed him staring and gave Jamie a small smile. He turned to everyone else.

"So, who's up for a snow day?" Jack asked happily. All Bunny could do was moan dramatically and pull his ears down while Jamie cheered. Tooth patted Bunny on the back in a comforting way. Sandy and North stood silently, staying away from the so-called 'drama'. I think I'm gonna like this family. EJ said, sounding just as happy as Jack. You have no idea what you're getting yourself into. Jack replied in his head but he wasn't objecting.

Hope you guys enjoyed the story. I'm so sad now that it's over! I hope you guys like the ending, I worked for a long time on it but no ideas would come! Agh! And I left you with a cliffhanger last chapter but finally it's finished.

Review please, you know I love it *wink* :) I think I'm gonna go crash on my couch now and watch movies until an idea strikes me. See ya guys later!