The Night Before Christmas

Christmas Eve. The night North shined. This was the night were all the children sat up in their beds waiting for a sign that Santa was near. While his all his hard work goes unnoticed outside. Jack Frost, ex-guardian, sat on the sidewalk of New York City. He sat with his shoulders slummed and hood drawn over his head.

Ex-guardian because there was there was no reason to be a guardian anymore. Nobody believed in him and the others didn't get it. North would always have kids that would believe in him – he had the most! Bunny, Tooth and Sandy would have believers too. Kids usually grew up with legends of them along with North.

But never Jack Frost. There was never a story of him shared around the fireplace.

Jack leaned against the railing, eyes glued to the globe. He sighed. What was he even doing? Lights were going out faster than Sandy could put him to sleep – Lights for him. Of course, he saw this coming. Nobody believed in Jack Frost.

There was only a handful left of lights left. He loved them dearly, his last believers, but it was no use. They would go out like the rest of them.

He lowered his head as the tears began. He could feel the other guardian's eyes on them. He wish they'd all leave him alone. One by one, more lights went out. What was the point of this?

Shakily, he reached out and grabbed his staff as he raised his head. Just a couple more left and they went out as quickly as the rest. Four…three…two…

"I quit," Jack said out loud, turning away as the last one went out.

Everyone came out of their hiding spots. Tooth was the first to speak, "Jack…"

"No," He shook his head. "Don't try to stop me. There's no point anymore. You'd feel the same way if nobody believed in you."

Jack walked out with no real plan of where he was going. Where could he go? Somewhere quiet so he wouldn't be bothered by all the people he's invisible too.

As the door slammed shut, Sandy looked up at the globe again. His eyes went wide as he saw a light appear on the globe. It wasn't just any light through, it was a light for none other but Jack Frost. He wasn't the only one who saw that. Tooth was calling out Jack's name in hopes he'll come back to see.

He never did.

Jack shook the memory out of his head. It wasn't something he wanted to remember. Soundlessly he walked the streets of New York, what he was doing here he couldn't could tell you. He kind of just…landed here. Of course, one of the most populated area in the world to make him miserable.

He turned a corner and laid eyes on a tall tower that was lit up like a Christmas tree. A mischievous smile crosses his face as he took off on his staff. People on the streets grimaced as a cold wind hit their faces. No one looked for the cause of course.

"Oof," Jack grunted as he landed face down on the snowy concrete roof of the building. He wasn't sure what building it was; it just had a big 'A' on the front of it. But boy did he have a great view of the city! Perhaps there were still some things this world could offer him.

Tony Stark sat out on the roof of Avengers Tower. The rest of the Avengers were inside celebrating Christmas with gifts and hot chocolate. Don't worry, he'll go unmissed and his presence unnoticed surely.

The more he spent with the Avengers, the less he thought of himself. The team didn't need him – they needed his tech. 'Iron Man, yes. Tony Stark, not recommended,' after all. He was pretty damn sure Cap hated him. Banner and Barton tolerated him. Natasha…he's never bother to figure out how she thought of him. He knew she didn't like him.

A thump startled him. At first he thought it was one of the other Avengers but quickly dismissed that notion. They were having such a great time when he left. Why go looking for him now?

Knowing that, Tony slowly stood up and walked to the source of the sound. He was shocked to find a boy with snow white hair and a blue sweatshirt lying in the snow.

"How…How did you get up here?" Surely someone must have seen him. The kid jumped at the sound of his voice and reached for a stick, a stick just about the size of him with a curved top. The look on his face was utter confusion maybe a little bit of joy mixed it. "You going talk? Or do I have to drag security all the way up here? They won't be happy about doing that…"

"Uh…" the kid began. A million questions were going through the boy's head. But the only words he could form were "I'm Jack?"

A small smile crossed his face, "Tony. And…I wasn't going to call security by the way. They don't listen to me. But…how did you get all the way to the top without getting noticed?"


He laughed, "I don't believe in that, kid."

"I have a question," Jack stood up, grabbing his staff. "It's Christmas Eve, why aren't with your family instead of freezing on top of a building?" Tony scoffed. "Alright…friends?" A shallow look appeared in the man's eyes. "You too, huh? I got abandoned as well." Which was more or less the truth. He abandoned the guardians but everyone else abandoned him.

Tony sat down with his hands resting on his knees. "At least you had people that actually cared about you…"

"Oh I bet they do," Jack said, sitting on top of the railing. "You just haven't given them the full chance to show it. Sometimes it takes time for people to show it."

Tony laughed, "Look at me now, getting therapy from a sixteen year old."

"Hey!" Jack exclaimed. "I'm eighteen."

He waved a hand dismissively, "Same difference."

"So…" He got off the railing and walked around with his staff resting against his shoulder. "What's this building even for? What kind of boring business takes place here?" He tapped his staff against the wall. A steel echoing reached his ears.

Tony just stared at him. "What you've never heard of the Avengers?" Jack looked at him, lost. "Band of misfit superheroes going around saving the world? What hole did you fall down?"

"A cold one?" Jack joked. Of course he's heard of the Avengers! He's listened to the news casts from open windows, quite an interesting story.

A smile crossed the man's face. Their talk couldn't continue sadly because in that moment none other but Bruce Banner walked onto the roof. "Tony? What are you doing out here?" He wrapped his arms around his chest, mentally scolding himself for forgetting a jacket.

Tony looked at the doctor, then back at Jack. Banner looked at him like he was crazy. He looked right through Jack, like he wasn't there. Was…he going crazy?

"You sure you're okay?" Banner asked, voice laden with concern. "Why don't you come down? The cold must be getting to you."

Tony nodded, "I'll be down in a minute." Banner nodded and left, closing the door before him. Tony stood up and pointed at the door, "Why couldn't he see you."

Jack just winked, "Later Tony." He tapped his staff on the ground. The concrete became a frozen drawing ground. Before Tony could move, the kid was jumping off the building and flying away on his staff.

Jack smiled as he flew away. Having a believer was thrilling and, ironically, warmed his heart. He thought he watched all his lights go out, guess he missed one. Even though he might have not known who he was talking to, he still saw him.

A wide smile appeared on Tony's face as he watched Jack fly away. "Jack Frost…!" He couldn't believe his luck. He's believed in the wintery spirit since he was a child and stole that book of fairy tales out of the living room. "I can't believe this…"

A/N: Okay…not sure where this came from. But a plot bunny hit me and I just started writing and came out…with this! I have this small head canon that Tony thought of the guardians as his own personal family and friends when he was growing up, considering he didn't have much of a real one.

Please review?