((A/N: I don't think Pitch quite realizes yet exactly what he's getting into. Poor thing. Thanks for the wonderful reception! This is already more popular than any of my other fics this month - hence my trying to get another chapter up pretty soon. I'm hoping the next one will be done sometime tomorrow. Enjoy~))
There was a strange feeling in the air in the days following Jack's death, and tonight – the night of the full moon – it was so strong that Pitch couldn't even focus on his duties of scaring children. He'd been on his way to torment little Emma – a task that had become almost too easy, but her fear was quite intense and rejuvenated him in ways he hadn't been used to for quite some time – when he was suddenly overcome with the strong urge to visit the lake that boy had drowned in only days ago. Rather than approach right away – the man on the moon was at his strongest on full moon nights and Pitch rather liked to avoid direct contact with him – he slunk about amongst the shadows of the trees and watched the moonbeams glint off the frozen surface of the lake. The hole in which Jack fell in the ice had frozen over after a blizzard hit the town a few hours after he fell in. They weren't able to recover his body in time. It was somewhere down there still and would likely remain there until the spring.
As Pitch watched though, something curious happened. Seemingly by itself, the ice coating on the lake appeared to melt in the spot where the moonlight was most concentrated. What was the man on the moon up to? Leaning against a tree trunk as he fiddled with his black sand and sent it swirling around his palm, Pitch decided to stick around to find out what was happening and see if he could thwart whatever plans the man on the moon had. It turned out he didn't need to wait long. As he watched the hole in the ice covered lake, a head bobbed above the surface and rose out of the water. His hair was as white as the fallen snow around him and his eyes were an icy blue-grey rather than the brown they were previously, but the kid was most certainly the one that died only a few days ago. Jack.
Darkness, that's all there was. Where on earth was he? The better question was – who was he? What on earth was he doing floating up from the depths of a deep lake? Surely that wasn't normal. The boy gasped in a deep breath once his head broke the surface of the water and the first thing he noticed once he caught his breath was the moon shining brightly on him. Your name is Jack Frost were the words that appeared inside his head, and despite not knowing the origin for sure, he had the suspicion that it was the moon itself speaking to him. "Well if I have a name that must mean I matter! W-what am I supposed to do here? Where is here? Please just . . . send me a sign or something," he begged the moon, but it merely hung in the air – silent. It was as though it was mocking him. Why tell him his name but nothing else!? When he fell to his knees and placed his face in the palms of his hands, he felt a presence behind him. Jack jerked his head up and whirled around, grasping his staff in his hands. "Who are you!?"
Pitch's eyes traveled over the boy appraisingly. If the man on the moon wanted him, he must be important – especially to the Guardians he'd been trying to defeat for years. It seemed it was time to take advantage of the boy's vulnerability. "A friend," he answered simply.
Jack's eyes narrowed slightly in suspicion before he remembered he'd just asked the moon for a sign and immediately after this mysterious, dark figure appeared. Perhaps he needed to talk to him? It wasn't in Jack's nature to so easily believe people though. "Oh yeah? Who said I needed a friend?" He challenged the man. Pitch let out a loud laugh. He hadn't been expecting that answer. This kid sure had spunk.
"Did I ever say I was yours?" He replied mysteriously. Oh that should make him fall into his hands. The boy would likely assume he meant he was friends with the moon, and then he was free to corrupt him without interference. Jack's eyes widened. This had to be the moon's sign! He was meant to interact with whoever this man was. He made him feel a little uneasy and he seemed familiar – although he shouldn't considering Jack had only been alive for a few minutes now.
"Well . . . no. I guess you didn't . . . I'm Jack!" He greeted the man and stuck out his hand for a shake. Pitch glanced down at the offered hand for a few seconds before sticking out his as well and returning the shake. An odd feeling spread through each of them that made both of them widen their eyes in shock. Jack felt the darkness of the man combine with his cold and it felt . . . right? Pitch noted the same feeling, but it unnerved him slightly. He'd been alone for so long – why was this boy any different from all the others he'd used and abused throughout the years? The Tooth Fairy had been among his previous victims he'd tried turning to his side, but he'd come far too late and she had no intention of leaving horrible things under the children's pillows rather than coins. It was sad really.
"Hello, Jack," he greeted and smiled at the irony. Perhaps he should have said hello again Jack. "You may call me Pitch," he continued and let his hand fall from the handshake that had lasted far too long as a mere greeting. When Pitch said his name, Jack's eyebrows furrowed slightly. Why was he so familiar? There was just something about him. Jack felt like he knew him from somewhere. He shook his head slightly to clear the thought from his mind and glanced up at the man that was staring at him curiously.
"A-are you here to help me or something, Pitch?" He asked curiously. Pitch merely turned and gestured for Jack to follow him. With a shrug, Jack picked up his staff and followed after him.
"In a way. You'll see," Pitch commented vaguely as he led Jack away from the lake and towards the town. He could feel the moon's disapproving gaze practically burning a hole in him. You don't want this, Pitch. He ground to a halt, causing Jack to stumble into him and complain. Pitch gained back his composure rather quickly, but the fact the man on the moon was speaking to him unnerved him. Ha! Unnerved me? I'm the King of Nightmares – he holds no sway over me. Pitch directed his thoughts towards the moon – he knew he'd hear him. And when did you ever care about what I want? After this thought, he cut himself off and focused on the present surroundings. Jack was running and flying on ahead – apparently in that short span of time he realized he could, so Pitch dematerialized into shadows and drifted up and alongside Jack who yelped when he noticed.
"You can do amazing things too?" Jack asked in glee. He was utterly thrilled with his newfound abilities, but skidded to a stop when he discovered there were people still out and about. "Hello!" He greeted a woman, but she ignored him. He frowned slightly. Well that was rude he thought in irritation and turned towards Pitch who was now reforming into his body again. Jack heard a bark and whipped around to see a boy chasing a dog. "Hey! I like your dog!" He yelled. The boy kept coming towards him. At this rate he was going to plow him down! Jack winced when it looked like he was going to get knocked over, but rather than falling, he felt the kid go right through him. "What? Am – am I a ghost?" He cried in dismay, but Pitch placed a comforting hand on his shoulder.
"Of course not. They merely don't believe in you," when Jack looked confused, Pitch continued, "Jack – you are a spirit of sorts yes, but not in the way you think. You are a winter spirit. It seems you can control ice and cold – it's much like how I can control darkness, fear, and shadows. When the man on the moon brought you here – oh don't act so shocked, I'm just like you, of course I know who he is - he intended for me to teach you and bring your powers to their full potential. Tell me, Jack Frost, will you accept my guidance?" He asked with a hopeful gleam in his eyes. This was the moment that would determine which side Jack would choose, and he didn't even realize it. This was all a game to him for now. It was all exciting and new. He didn't realize that if he agreed to go with Pitch that it would set off a flurry of events that would change his life forever. Pitch was practically giddy. Cold and dark! They went together perfectly. There were so many ways him and Jack could cause destruction and terror. He finally would have somebody to fill his endless days with companionship rather than loneliness.
"I – I guess. I don't really have anywhere else to go . . . especially if nobody believes in me," he sighed in dejection before he noticed something; none of the few people that were still out seemed to notice Pitch either. "Wait – these people don't see you either. Do they not believe in you too?" How was it he could have so much in common with this man he'd known for so little time. Perhaps the moon came through for him after all. He had Pitch now to show him about his abilities and maybe he'd even help him figure out what he was before this. Surely people weren't just born this way. Maybe he'd been an entirely different person before.
"A rare few believe in me now; only a handful of children really. My life is a rather lonely one," Pitch replied sadly and hoped that this antic would work. Yes, he was lonely, but he was used to the solitude by now. It wasn't that bad – really.
"Well Pitch – I believe in you. It looks like your life just got a little less lonely," Jack replied with a large grin. "Where do you live anyways?" He probably lived in some fantastic castle or something.
"Come – I will show you," Pitch replied and was unable to hide a victorious grin. He'd finally done it. He'd taken something the man on the moon wanted beneath his very nose. That was a figure of speech of course. It looked as though Pitch had one more tool in his arsenal against the Guardians. It would be quite some time before he was powerful enough to face them, but by the time he was, he would have a powerful ally on his side that would be nearly as bad as himself. It was merely time to be patient now. Pitch had lived for centuries; he knew how to be patient. All would work in his favor eventually, and hopefully the boy would cooperate.