~ Rabbits are always quick, but slow ~
Jack was in figurative emotional 'shambles'. A living, breathing, train-wreck that walked around his forest home near Burgess, completely confused. He was just so unsure. It didn't help that he had an extreme bias on the situation, now that he had sampled something like that. A simple kiss filled to bursting with soft passion, after all, was hard to ignore and even harder to deny. It proved to be so in Jack's case anyway. He hadn't been remotely attracted to anyone in the past three hundred years. Now, he felt a deep desire to return to someone he just learned had feelings for him, but that was it. Bunny had just developed these feelings, and so had Jack, yet the want was so deeply ingrained, that Jack couldn't even think straight. It was impossible to tell all clear thought from the incoherent ramblings of the heart, one almost completely overlapping the other.
He was constantly reminded that there was something there for him, a promise to be treated well. A promise to be respected, to be noticed, to be seen, to be acknowledged, to be touched, to be interacted with, and to be loved. It promised so much, all of the things that he wanted, yet Jack was uneasy to accept for only a handful of reasons. The pro's outweigh the con's, but still he hesitated.
"What am I going to do…" Jack said aloud, sure that he was alone and that he could have this conversation… with himself. "I like him, I might even be in love, but I don't know why he picked me?!" It truly was a stumping query. Jack was unsure of what made him stand out to the lagomorphic Guardian. He was just a kid that made it snow too much, playing one too many pranks, and always taking things too far. He was a stubborn, immortal teenager. By all merits he was still a child and Bunny was just so grown up. He was mature, and Jack was not. Bunny was strong and independent, Jack was weak, and he needed others. Bunny protected an important part of the world, Hope; and all Jack did was bring Fun. Bunny hated cold, and that was all Jack was, ice, snow and an aura made of frost he doubted Bunny wouldn't approve of. There were so many conflictions. Why did Bunny set aside such an expansive amount of differences and pick Jack? "It doesn't make sense!"
"He seemed so… straight!" Why Bunny's previously perceived sexuality was a point for contemplation, even Jack didn't know, but he was sure it added to the level of confusion… and maybe voiced another concern- It did present the other half of the question, "Why Jack". He knew many female spirits, and most of them were far better suited for Bunny than Jack was. Plenty of the ones he could list were spring related, Bunny's favorite season. No male spirit Jack knew of would ever seem to get to Bunny, except Jack himself and that was perplexing. "Then suddenly, I figure out he's not straight at all, then I'm not, and it's all so confusing." Jack cried out, the building confusion and anxiety reaching a climax that made him barely able to suppress the urge to cry. The overwhelming surge of negative emotions alone, dragging him to his knees.
"But it doesn't have to be that way, Jack." said a definitely female voice. Jack looked up, opening eyes he didn't even realize he had closed and he saw the Tooth Fairy. "You can forget him and the torment he puts you through. I would never do something like that to you." she said, holding out her hand.
But Jack was wary. The woman hovering in front of him was off. She wasn't her usual vibrant self, she seemed muted. Her voice wasn't changing, a constant monotone that didn't match her usual bubbly personality full of voice cracks due to excessive rise in pitch. Then there was that soft smile, it was meant to be reassuring, but Jack saw through it. It was all fake, a lie, and a sham.
"You can come with me and you won't have to bother with that rabbit. All he does is make you unsure, he makes you feel like nothing and he knows it. He revels in the confusion he causes, and he doesn't care that it hurts you. He only wants you because he thinks he's better than you. He doesn't love you and he never will, but I wouldn't ever do that to you. I care about your feelings, Jack. I know what it's like to be looked down on. I was the weakest link in our ragtag group of Guardians. I know what it was like, and I can make that pain go away." the Tooth fairy insisted, inching her hand closer to Jack.
"You're lying." Jack said, bitter that Tooth, one of his best friends, had said something like that, spilling out his fears for the world to see. "You're working with Pitch. You can't help me."
"Don't be so scathing, you don't even know the beginning of the pain I told you about. I'm trying to save you from a terrible burden. Who cares about sides?" she said trying to convince him with her twisted logic.
"I do, and you're on the wrong one." Jack said.
"Jack, you disappoint me." she said, flitting backwards. "I thought you liked me."
And as soon as she arrived, she was gone, her comment hanging heavily in the air as she left. As her form vanished into them, the shadows undulated from their usual positions in the forest, and they came and wrapped Jack in their chilly embrace, in a cold too cold for even Jack Frost. Then his vision faded, and Jack frost was out like a light.
~ The Nightmare ~
All he saw were his friends staring down at him, and he was stuck in some kind of pit. It was full, with from what he could tell, of shadows. His fellow Guardians glared down at him. He pleaded with his eyes and yanked an arm free of the inky substance he was trapped in. The free arm extended towards his friends. But no one, not North, not Sandy, not Tooth, not even Bunny moved to take Jack's hand.
"Help me, guys!"
They stood there longer, unforgiving in their indifference. Jack began sinking farther and farther, hand reaching with a greater intensity to his supposed friends, his muscles straining to continue. Then Bunny stepped forward, and in a smooth gesture, grabbed the pale hand reaching for help.
"Sorry Jack, but you're not good enough for us." Bunny said in a low and uncaring tone, then, to Jack's dismay, Bunny pulled him in, causing his body to sway in the dark pool. But he didn't pull Jack out and instead he moved his arm, using his grip on the cold hand to somehow pull Jack into a swing. The pale teen was swung farther away from the group and at the last moment, when he reached the top of his arc, he was unceremoniously tossed farther into the darkness. Bunny stepped back to rejoin the Guardians.
Feeling completely and utterly betrayed, Jack sank, giving into the unyielding black as his head went beneath the surface, his eyes not leaving his friends until the bitter end. At this point he was too far gone, his mind too blank to even allow him to feel the fear enveloping his body on all sides. He just sunk into the cold and endless abyss. And when he thought he was done, he gasped, unable to breath and the inky substance began to fill his lungs, flooding in through his nose and mouth. He even exhaled sharply to try and stop the progression of the tasteless fluid, but it persisted and soon, Jack could feel the cold completely filling his lungs. He had drowned once again.
~ Bunny - looking for Jack - also being a horrible eavesdropper ~
As it turned out, to Bunny's extreme amazement, Jack was fine and currently not kidnapped. Just as Bunny hadn't expected. He was relieved, don't get him wrong, but how was this possible? He was sure Pitch's next move would be to capture Jack.
"What am I going to do…" Jack said to himself, Bunny unintentionally listening in due to his super-sensitive hearing. "I like him, I might even be in love, but I don't know why he picked me?!... It doesn't make sense, he seemed so… straight! Then suddenly, I figure out he's not straight at all, then I'm not, and it's all so confusing." he added with sob, falling to his knees.
Bunny wanted to do something besides just sit there, but intervention would mean very bad things. He couldn't do anything except but listen and watch as the one he desperately wanted to soothe, drove himself over the edge.
Then things, by all means, went crazy.
Jack started talking to himself again, but his voice was muted and Bunny couldn't make out any of the words. Then the shadows themselves convulsed and covered the young frost spirit, encasing him in the inky black, and before Bunny could move to help, the shadows fled. Jack was still there, to Bunny's great relief, but was now laying face down in the snow, body deathly still and unmoving, not even to rise and fall in the natural flow required of breathing.
"Jack!" Bunny called out to his prone comrade. He sped to the seemingly lifeless form of Jack, scooping up the teen's body and cradling it close to his chest. He reached a hand up to Jack's neck for a pulse. He was once again grateful, Jack still was alive, but just barely and he wasn't breathing. That or Jack's chest wasn't moving for another reason entirely.
The minutes ticked by as Bunny waited for Jack to take a breath that would set his pulse back to normal pace. Eventually he laid the body back on the ground, performing CPR so as to speed up the revival process. It was all for naught. Jack lay, still not moving, but the weak beating of his heart continued. Bunny couldn't explain it. He had to get Jack to North, maybe somehow the old Russian would be able to find a cure, or at least consult Manny for one.
The tunnel was open in a heartbeat, pun not intended, and Bunny was once again holding the younger spirits body, carting him off to the far reaches of the North Pole. And maybe to answers and miracles.
~ Ending here because I can ~
A/N: I know, I know. I'm really just dragging things along, and the chapter isn't even long this time! Yeah, all I can say is sorry. The next chapter will probably be a little more exciting, fulfilling to your wishes, and overall a much more pleasing and stimulating chapter, and it will more than likely be built with my utmost care, attention, and skill. So I suppose you guys have something to look forward to. (Again?)
And remember, i'm still doing prompt requests. I just kind of did another one this chapter! Just leave a review of what you may or may not want, and if I can, I'll contact you and tell you what's going to happen to your idea. Thanks to Kayla(guest), for the basis of the idea I used in this chapter. Your idea was truly amazing and well thought out, but I couldn't use all of it, for personal reasons. I'm sorry if I botched anything(I doubt you posted your review as an idea/request, it was probably meant as advice… that I took), but honestly what you shared with me was too good to pass up. Thanks for sharing ;).