Caution: Quills may be sharp Circulation: 184,867,923 Issue: 477 | 14th day of Sleeping, Y13
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First Snowfall

by randomettee


I was wild and free. My spirit entangled with the land around me, nature and myself we were at one.

     Hot sun blazed down, as I stretched my long delicate legs, increasing my stride form a steady canter to and exhilarating gallop. Palm trees grew in abundance, reaching towards the light blue sky. Orchids bloomed delicately swaying softly in the warm summer breeze. Sand engulfed my hooves as I sped down the beach. The mixture of sea spray and salt sprayed my face. I smiled as I lengthened my stride further. Mane flowing behind me, a high pitched whinny escaped my throat echoing in my ears. Bliss.

     Suddenly, the sand became soft and fluffy. Strange. No longer could I run, this was impossible, what was happening? The wind disappeared and instead of a blazing summer sun I felt a cold chill. Wind no longer carried the smell of orchids and summer but the smell of wood burning and hot chocolate. Shivering, I slowly opened my eyes. Sigh. It was a dream. If only it were true.

     "Ankwi! Ankwi! I hope you're awake; we have a lot to do today."

     I snorted, burying myself deeper into my blanket. Cas, my owner, would never find me, I mused. As I began to drift back into sleep, I felt the soft woolen comfort disappear.

     "Come on, Ankwi, it's snowing! Hurry!"

     Well, I thought, what's snow? I raised my head slowly, curious but cautious also, blinking as a dazzling sun stared back at me. Unfolding my legs, I forced my heavy body up and stumbled to the window. Cas, clearly ecstatic with my movements, ran off to grab something called gloves. I released another sigh.

     What the...? Well, this should be interesting, I thought as I stared out at the white alien world which lay out in front of me. What I once knew was gone, now replaced with a mysterious place with which I was unfamiliar. What was going on?

     "Ankwi! Come on!" I heard the impatience in her voice. I hurried to brush my coat and mane. Once done, I threw a worried glance back towards the window to see the outside world which awaited me. Well, better get on with it. With that, I walked slowly to the door. Cas sprinted downstairs, smiling, and threw the door open, I couldn't help but whicker; she looked like she had been in the lab ray and somehow been zapped into a large marshmallow.

     "It's not funny." She frowned as she turned to run eagerly out the door. I tried to muffle yet another whicker as she bounded out in her sweet-resembling outfit. As I stood watching my owner, I was hit by the sheer power of the "snow". I gasped. It was cold. No, in fact, it was freezing! I began to back away.

     I was an island Uni and I most definitely was not cut out for the cold. I stood frozen. Literally. Fovella ran by me eagerly. I watched astounded as she practically threw herself into the "snow". She bound through the "snow" with ease, wind blowing through her mane and eyes wide with excitement as she ran after Cas.

     It looked such fun, I stepped forward, greeting the cold outdoors. I put my hoof in cautiously. It's not so bad. Like frozen sand, I suppose you could say. I heard a whinny and glanced up quickly to see the encouragement my family were giving me. With that I knew I could do it, and without a second thought I flew through the door heading straight for Cas.

     Oddly, I was enjoying myself. It resembled my dream apart from everything having a unique beauty. A white glaze that hung on every surface, bedazzling the world with a diamond shine. Within minutes I had caught up with her. I threw my delicate muzzle into her chest and neighed. I was safe.

     It truly was beautiful. Pine trees surrounding our home hung with snow as think as my hooves. A delicate mist hung about the air making Neopia seem magical and enchanting. The sun shone through palely, allowing the snow surrounding us to glisten under its rays. Tiny flakes twirled and spiraled like tiny dances, until they finally rested silently on the ground.

     Cas and I stood in our embrace for what felt like moments. I was finally at a place where I belonged and where I was needed.

     Fovella raced towards us, skidding into my side so as to stop. I glanced up, turned towards her, lowering my head ready for my instincts to lead to a chase. Fove caught on to my plans and sped quickly off in the opposite direction. I followed close on her heels. I was close now. Unexpectedly, Fove stumbled and fell. Unfortunately, due to the fact I was so close, I fell over her agile body. We both lay in an entangled help, giggling uncontrollably.

     A short time after, I freed myself, shook my mane, trying to rid it of the snow which clung firmly. I nudged Fove to rise to her feet. She smiled at me.

     "Let's make a snow Uni!" she suggested excitedly.She hurriedly began to gather snow. Confused but convinced, I began to mirror her actions, first using my tail to gather a ball, then using my nose to nudge it delicately across the powdery surface. Cas skipped over, realizing what we were attempting. She began to pat and shape our creation and soon the form of a Uni took place. Then I had an idea, running over to the vegetable patch I pulled up eight plump carrots. Dangling from my mouth the carrots hung and so I rode back.

     Cas gently retrieved them from my mouth and began to place them at the tip of the snow Uni's wings. Black stones provided our Uni with sight and one proud particularly large carrot stood proudly in the midst of the Uni's forehead. As I admired the Uni, I noticed a lone carrot lying dejected on the floor. Seeing as it served no particular purpose for the snow Uni, I quickly snuffled the carrot up. Yum.

     It took a few hours before the cold truly set in, cold droplets of moisture penetrating through my warm coat. I began to shiver and I felt Fovella's body tremble also. Cas noticed.

     "Come on," she said lovingly, "let's go home."

     With that we returned, content with our day and the memories we had created. That evening I lay by the fire, warm, happy, Fovella to my right and Cas cuddling close to my left. I had never felt so fulfilled, so at home. This was my life now and I was part of a whole. It was the first time I had seen snow, but equally it was the first close moment I had had with my owner. Because of this I have come to treasure my memory of the first snowfall.

     So I sighed happily, no longer was I afraid of the cold. In fact, I embraced it. And so I lay my head down, drifting slowly into sleep and returned to how this story began. A dream where wishes can come true and nothing is impossible.

The End

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