You bounced eagerly in your seat as you watched large clumps of snow drift past the carriage window. You had your face so close to the window that your breath began to fog up the glass, which you frequently reached up with a gloved hand to wipe the fog away. Antonio chuckled as he watched you from the other side of the carriage.
"You wouldn't happen to be excited about going to visit Chibitalia would you ___?" he asked grinning widely.
You glanced at your caretaker and rolled your eyes dramatically, "Toniiii-"
He held up his hands laughing, "Just checking mi flor."
You returned to watching the snow drift by and trying to keep yourself from exploding with happiness.
The carriage wasn't even stopped when you flung the door open. Antonio lunged forward from his seat and grabbed onto the back of your white fuzzy cloak, keeping you from being thrown from the doorway.
"___! Are you trying to get yourself killed?" he asked turning you to look at him, his green eyes flashing.
Your eyes began to water at the edges, "I-I'm sorry Toni!"
His green eyes softened, and he hugged you, "I know you are, I just worry about you that's all."
You sniffled and kissed him quickly on the cheek before you squirmed your way of his grasp and out of the carriage. The snow crunched under your small feet as you skittered out into the untouched snow. You spread your arms wide and began to spin with your face to the sky, your cloak and dress swirling around you. Snowflakes ghosted across your skin and stuck themselves into your [h/c} hair and eye lashes. Cautiously, you stuck your tongue out and a few flakes landed on it. You giggled and stopped your spinning when you heard the creak of the carriage as Antonio got out of it.
"____, are you going to stay out here all day?" Antonio called to you as he started to walk to the front door of the mansion.
You giggled and rushed after him, but just as you were about to reach him your foot slipped on a patch of ice that was hidden beneath the snow. You felt backwards onto your back and whacking your head onto the snow cover ground. Luckily, your hair and thick cloak hood had spared you from breaking your skull open. You laid stunned on the ground looking upwards before the pain and the tears set it. You stared to bawl loudly and you sat up clutching the back of your head, Antonio turned to look and see why you were crying. His tanned face paled when he saw you on the ground, and he rushed to console you.
"Mi flor, what happened?" he asked as he stood you up and brushed the snow from you.
"I-I slipped! A-And then- then I fell and hit my h-head!" you wrapped your arms around his neck and buried your face into the crook of his neck sobbing.
Antonio chuckled knowingly and patted your back as he picked you up and walked back to the door with you in his arms still crying. Using his foot, he kicked on the door a few times hoping that someone had heard it. A half a minute later, the clacks of the door being unlocked could be hear and then it creaked open to reveal Ms. Elizabeta.
She looked at Antonio and then you and gasped, "What happened? Oh never mind that, come in!" She stepped aside and you both entered the warm mansion, the door shutting behind you sealing off the cold air.
"Now," Ms. Elizabeta stepped in front of Antonio to look at you. "What happened here?"
"___ had a little mishap on some ice and fell."
You hiccupped and whimpered at the mention of the evil solid that had hurt you. They laughed quietly at your reaction, and Ms. Elizabeta gently took you from your care taker.
"Thanks Eliza, I'm sorry I had to leave her here again." Antonio said as he rubbed the back of his neck.
She laughed and waved him off to go with her free hand and you looked at him with teary eyes. He patted the top of your head and kissed it.
"Don't forget what you were so excited to see when you got here." he whispered before stepping back out into the winter.
You stopped your sniffling once you fully realized what he was saying, which was soon followed by you hopping out of Ms. Elizabeta's grasp and running further into the mansion.
You giggled as you skittered across the marble floored hallway as you rounded the corner. Your boots clacked as continued running down the hallway looking at each door as you past by hoping to see your little Italian friend. Eventually you can to the end of the hall that turned right. Without slowing down you rounded the corner and tripped over something. You fell with a loud thump and smack. Groaning, as you sat up you heard soft laughing. You turned around and saw a young boy dressed entirely in black with blonde hair with cerulean eyes, who was blushing but laughing all the while. You glared at him and stood up with a huff and took off running with your dignity.
'Such a mean boy.'
The sound of singing drifted to your ears and you paused from your running to listen, your breath coming out in low gasps. It was coming from an open door up the hall. Quietly you crept up the hall, only making small taps as you walked across the marble floor and got closer to the door. You leaned over to peer into the room, your winter cape shifting on your shoulders and drooping into the doorway. Your face brightened as you saw the familiar green dress and auburn hair with a curl sticking out.
"CHIBITALIA!" you chirped as you stepped fully into the door way.
Feli turned with a confused expression which turned to joy when he saw you. He dropped his push broom and you ran over to tackle him into a hug.
"Oh, ____, I've missed you soooo much!" he sang as you both danced around hugging each other.
You grinned cheekily and kissed him on both cheeks, "I've missed you more!"
You both let go of each other and took a step back when Chibitalia, saw your outfit. "____! You're still in your outside clothes!"
You looked down and laughed, "I was too excited about seeing you that I forgot to take them off!" Quickly you untied the ribbon which kept your cloak on, and discarded it onto a nearby couch arm. There was a cough from the doorway and the two of you turned to look. Ms. Elizabeta was standing at the door looking very amused.
"Chibitalia, are you done with your chores?" she asked grinning, which he nodded eagerly in response.
"Then how about a snack?"
You looked over at Feli and he looked at you and then together you looked back at Ms. Elizabeta, "Yes please!"
She laughed and motioned for you to follow her, which you both did.
After heading back to the main hall, Ms. Elizabeta led you into the dining room that was off to the side of it. She opened the doors and you froze. The little boy from earlier was sitting on one of the many chairs, swinging his feet but stopped when the door opened. He froze when his eyes settled on you.
"IT'S YOU!" you shouted at each other in unison.
"You know Mr. Emmanuel ___?" Ms. Elizabeta asked looking shocked.
"No, but he tripped me and then laughed at me earlier!" you said pointing to him in a dramatic fashion.
"I did not trip you! That's what you get for running in the halls!" Emmanuel shouted back at you, blushing slightly.
"Now, now children. Let's not argue before snack." Ms. Elizabeta sighed as she picked you up and placed you on the other side of the table. Directly across from Emmanuel. You glared daggers at him until you heard the ruffle of more clothes and the sound of struggle. You looked down and saw Chibitalia trying his hardest to climb into the chair next to you. He finally got up and sighed contentedly, Ms. Elizabeta went over to a small cart and pulled a few plates and a jar off of it.
"Hey! I wanted to sit by Chibitalia!" Emmanuel whined as she set a plate in front of him.
"____ is a guest and we want her to be comfortable don't we?"
He grumbled his response, and Ms. Elizabeta grinned as she placed the plates in front of you and Chibitalia. She set down the jar and opened it, and pour out some of its contents onto your plate. They were tiny cookies in the shape of a star. You grabbed on and slowly took a bite. Your eyes widened as your mouth tasted the sweetness of the cookie. You hummed in delight and began to eat the rest of your cookies.
"Ms. Elizabeta, I need milk." Emmanuel grumbled from his seat.
"Oh yes! Let me go get some! I'll be right back, don't get into any trouble!" she said as she left the room.
You swallowed dryly as you realized that you had finished your share of cookies. you looked over at Chibitalia, who was nibbling on his last cookie as well. You eyes then drifted over to Emmanuel's cookies. He hadn't touched a single one yet, and a devilish grin bloomed upon your lips. Emmanuel was watching the door like a hawk, leaving his cookies unguarded. You stood up quietly and leaned across the table, slowly reached for a few of his cookies. You felt the crumbs brush your finger tips and then they were in your grasp. You gave a small hum of victory as you started to retreat from his side of the table.
"HEY! THOSE ARE MY COOKIES!" you froze and looked up at the angered boy across from you.
"Not anymore, you owe me!" and you licked the one you had and sat back down again.
Emmanuel fumed at you from across the table and you giggled as you munched on his- er your cookies. The door opened again, and Ms. Elizabeta appeared with a large white pitcher. Walking slowly, she placed the pitcher on the table and walked back over to the cart.
"Ms. Elizabeta! ___ stole some of my cookies!" Emmanuel huffed and crossed his small arms over his chest.
Ms. Elizabeta turned around with three small teacups in her hand, and chuckled, "Oh did she now?"
"Yes! Make her pay me back!"
She looked at your plate and you shoved the last cookie you had into your cheeks that were overly filled with cookies and grinned. She chuckled and opened the cookie jar again, reaching in and grabbing two more and gave them to Emmanuel. He glared over at you with a triumphant grin, which faded when she reached back into the jar to give you and Chibitalia more cookies.
Emmanuel gaped at her as she lifted the pitcher and began to fill the cups with milk. His eyes then settled on you, glaring intensely. You giggled and bit into one of the cookies and winked at him. His glare dissipated and he sputtered, his face bright red.
"Mr. Emmanuel? Are you alright?" asked Chibitalia as he bit into a cookie.
Emmanuel didn't answer as he grabbed his plate and cup and hopped down from his chair. He walked to the door and Ms. Elizabeta opened it for him with a confused expression. You stared at him as the door shut behind him and shrugged eating your cookies noisily.
You flopped onto the couch next to Chibitalia and sighed contentedly as you patted your fully tummy.
"____? What do you want to do now?" Chibitalia asked cheerfully, glancing over at you with closed eyes.
You hummed as you thought, "We could play a game."
"What kind of game?"
"How about... Hide 'n seek?" you suggested.
"No, Mr. Roderich might get mad if we accidentally break something or go into his piano rooms." he sighed.
"Well, how about we go outside and play in the snow?"
"That's a great idea! Let's go!" You sat up and grabbed his hand, dragging him to locate your outside weather gear.
"Yay, it's still snowing!" You cheered as you ran outside with Chibitalia right behind you. You spun around with your arms outstretched and laughed. Chibitalia took a few steps away from you, which sparked a great idea in your mind. Quickly you bent down and scooped up some snow and flung it at him. He squealed as it connected with the backside of his head which caused you to laugh. He looked back at you with teary eyes before he knelt and scooped up his own ammunition and flung it at you while you were still laughing. It landed in your face which effectively silenced you from your laughing.
"Hehe, I got ___!" he giggled.
With a fluffy mitten you wiped your face and smirked, "It's on now!"
Thus your snowball fight began, and you both ran for cover. You ran to the side of the mansion and hid behind a snow covered tree. Chibitalia ran after you but ran past you without seeing you in your hiding spot. You grinned as you watched him continue running away. You stepped out and were about to chase after him when there was a knock from behind you. You spun around and looked for the sound. When you found it, you glared at it. Emmanuel was standing at the window his hand in mid tap, and he was blushing. You sniffed and stuck your tongue out at him before you ran after Chibitalia leaving an flustered Emmanuel behind.
Soon all of the familiar sights of the snow covered garden began to fade away as you ran in the direction you though your friend had ran off in. The further you went, the more you began to worry. Soon your running slowed to a staggered walk and you looked around yourself. Nothing looked familiar.
Your breathing hitched and you spun around trying to find your way back. Trees were all around but you were in a fairly open area.
"Hello?" you called out, hoping for somebody to answer, only for your voice to reply back to you.
Suddenly you felt as if your small body was made of ice and you shivered, hugging yourself tightly as you continued to spin around looking for something familiar.
Time dragged on as you sat half buried in the snow in the unfamiliar clearing shuddering from the cold. You looked up to the sky which was beginning to darken at a rapid pace. You felt your bottom lip begin to quiver and soon hot tears began to stream from your eyes. You buried your head into your arms.
"Find me... Please-" you whispered through your tears.
A far off noise caused you to stop and look up. You wiped your eyes and stood up, "H-Hey! I'm o-o-over h-here!" you called to it hoping it was somebody looking for you. The sound got louder and clearer and it sounded like a dog barking with someone yelling at it. Soon enough a large golden retriever burst through a small snow dune and bounded over to you and knocking you over into the snow.
"Hey! Aster wait up!" called a voice rather breathlessly.
You sat up and looked at the dune from which the dog had come, you gaped at who was climbing through it. Emmanuel trotted over to where you stood and patted the dog.
"You got lost didn't you?" he asked looking you in the eye.
You puffed out your cheeks, "I did not! Well- maybe... Ok yes."
He nodded and turned around and started to walk away, before he stopped and looked back at you, "You coming?"
Quickly you started to walk after him. You walked in silence trailing after Aster who led the way, until you broke it.
"How?" you asked quietly and Emmanuel looked back at you.
"Chibitalia came into the mansion after ten minutes crying about how you were missing and Ms. Elizabeta and I started to look for you around the mansion. Eventually, I let Aster out and he led me to you."
"I-I see... But why?"
He stopped shakily, "Because I-I-" he never finished his sentence as he fell sideways into the snow. You rushed over to him and dropped into the snow beside him.
"E-Emmanuel? H-Hey, this isn't any time for a nap!" you said as you shook his shoulder, but he didn't respond. You sat back, "Well isn't this just great? You fainted!"
Groaning you rolled Emmanuel over and tried your best to pick him up. After several tries, you gave up on trying to pick him up and gently leaned backwards over him while grabbing his hands and pulling them over your shoulders. With a shove, you managed to stand up with him draped over your back. You adjusted him so you could wrap your arms around his legs, and started to trudge through the snow. Aster padded beside you looking up at you with a doggy grin.
"You know the way back right?" you asked the dog, who barked at you and bounded a few yards in front of you. "I really hope you do."
Step. Step. Step. Step. Step. Step.
That was the only thought that went through your head as you followed the barely visiable figure of Aster through the dark night. Occasionally, Aster would bark and ran a bit further a head of you but he always came back. But this time when he bark and ran, he didn't come back.
"Stupid dog," you muttered breathlessly.
Your eyelids were starting to hang loosely over your eyes and you were starting to lose your grip on Emmanuel. You looked up quickly and saw the bright lights of the mansion shining on the snow and Aster bounding straight for it. You grinned tiredly and stumbled your way to the door, holding on tightly to Emmanuel. You tripped as you almost made it to the door and lost your grip on Emmanuel who rolled off of you and into the snow. You fell to your knees and then onto the ground.
Your eyes began to slip shut as you heard Aster bark and a door open along with a chorus of gasps. Your eyes then slipped shut.
'We made it.'
Warmth. That was all that you felt as you started to become conscious. There was quiet crying from nearby. You struggled with your eyelids to get them to open. After a little effort, you finally got them to crack. Looking towards the sound you spotted a familiar head with auburn hair sitting beside the bed you were laid in.
"Ch-chibitalia."you whispered hoarsely.
Chibitalia's face lit up when he saw that you were awake.
"Oh, _-___! You're awake!" he hiccupped quietly.
You nodded slightly, "I-I was so worried about y-you!" He said as he climbed onto the bed.
He leaned down and held your face in his hands and lightly kissed both of your cheeks, "Don't ever do that again, ok?"
You smiled weakly, "Of course I won't."
His face lit up with the most adorable smile, "Are you tired?"
"Do you want me to leave you alone then?"
You shook your head, "Stay with me."
He smiled, "Of course!" He then laid down next to you on top of the covers and cuddled up next to you. Your eyes then drifted closed before they shot open again.
"E-Emmanuel. Is he ok?" you looked over to the small Italian for your answer.
Chibitalia was about to say something when there was a knock at the door. The door then opened to reveal a very pale looking Emmanuel.
"Is _-__ awake yet?" he asked quietly.
"Yeah, I'm awake."
He shuffled close to the bed and looked at the comforter you were under, "I-I wanted to thank you... For saving me, as well as... er- I just, kind of wanted to say... That I'm sorry." he finished his little speech and there was a small trace of blush upon his pale cheeks.
You opened your mouth, but he cut you off again, "W-Well, now that I've said that... I'll be going."
He was already to the door when you finally said something.
"Emmanuel," he turned slowly to look at you. "I'm sorry as well."
He nodded and turned to leave before you stopped him again, "You wanna sleep in here with me and Chibitalia tonight?"
He flushed and looked at the both of you, before sighing, "I don't see why I can't"
Chibitalia cooed out a ve, and you smiled as Emmanuel shut the door and climbed into bed beside you. Chibitalia shuffled around and wriggled his way under the covers as well.
"G'night," you said as your eyes began to drift shut again.
"Good night." they chimed back before you fell asleep.
Emmanuel flushed as the one thought struck him as he looked at the two girls in bed with him.
'If I'm sleeping with both of them... who am I supposed to marry?!?!
Needless to say, he wasn't able to sleep with that thought drifting around in his mind.