Part One and Two
Jaclynn sat hunched over on her window seat, her little fingers wrapped around her knees. She watched a brown chunky carriage crawl towards the gates of the castle. Jaclynn sighed as she thought of what that carriage contained. Summer was about to start and the weather was already heating up. Sunlight streamed through the glazed glass window and sprinkles of light were scattered on the rainbow floor. Jaclynn groaned as she looked out at the carriage again and saw that it had paused at the gates.
Why does my summer have to be ruined? Jaclynn thought to herself. A servant scampered by her door and peeked her head inside.
“Your Highness, come along we're to meet Princess Emma at the gates. Do hurry, Princess!” The servant said and Jaclynn sighed and slunk towards the door. She followed the servant through the castle and out to the gates where her parents, the King and Queen of Donuts, stood waiting for her. They were dressed in their most regal attire. Long, orange and turquoise capes, dripping with glaze and sprinkles, were tied around their necks and large pastel donut crowns topped their heads. Jaclynn herself had her own donut dress, it had a yellow top with teal cuffs and the skirt was made of pink and blue sprinkles. She had on her light pink tights and black flats. And, like her mother and father, she had her own Donut crest hanging from a piece of gold string. No one thought anything of their outfits, for this was normal in Dack-A-Woodle-World.
They stood at attention as the cookie carriage rolled toward them. It stopped so close to them that Jaclynn could see the details of it. The walls were made out of hardened cookie crumbs, the trim was chocolate, and the top was a huge chocolate chip that curled at the top. The footmen, wearing chocolate colored suits, opened the doors and Jaclynn held her breath. The King and Queen were the first to come out of the carriage. They were followed by a girl who seemed to be twelve and she was trailed by a small girl only a couple years younger than Jaclynn herself. The royal Cookie family stood tall and a servant announced the Cookies to the Donuts.
“Their Highnesses, King and Queen of the Cookies, with their daughters Princess Pookie and Princess Emma.” The two families bowed to the other, then the adults joined together and spoke. Jaclynn slipped towards the two princesses and bobbed a curtsy.
“Hello,” Jaclynn greeted.
“Hello,” they echoed.
They waited in an awkward silence until Princess Emma said, “I like your hair.”
Jaclynn glanced up at her mop of fluffy brown curls, which had blue sprinkles scattered among them, and nodded her head.
“Thank you,” Jaclynn's eyes wandered to Princess Emma's own bright blonde hair and took in her humble dress. Jaclynn was surprised to see how simple it was. Emma's parents were dressed in their own fancy brown garb, varying in shades, even her sister had on a long, ornate purple dress with deep violet chocolate chips embedded in the skirt, but Emma only had a tan shift that came to her calves and a cookie pendant tied around her throat.
They fell back into their uncomfortable silence when the King of the Cookies came to the children with a smile on his face.
“It's all settled now! Emma is to stay here with the Donuts for the summer.”
Jaclynn deflated at his words. She knew it was going to happen, but she still had some hope. But no. Her summer was ruined.
There was a thickness in Emma's throat as her parents and sister came to say goodbye to her.
“Now, we'll be back at the end of summer. You'll be fine here with the donuts. This is only a demonstration of our trust to the Donut kingdom and Princess Jaclynn seems nice,” the Queen of Cookies explained, smiling. Emma nodded, then said her goodbyes to her family, tears forming in her eyes. She had never been away from her family for more than a couple days, and she hated the thought of being alone for a whole summer with only a girl who seemed stuck up as her company. She watched her family climbed back into the carriage. The cookie carriage rolled away and her throat burned with tears. Emma continued to watch until the carriage became a speck in the distance, then completely vanished from sight. The Donut King and Queen broke the silence.
“Come along, Princess Emma! We will show you to your room.” A servant with Emma's bags scurried after them as they began to walk into the immense Donut castle. Emma was struck speechless as she gazed at the splendor of the castle. She could barely make out the regal architecture with such bright, boisterous colors splashed on the walls, ceiling, and floor. Normally, it would have made Emma extremely happy to see such crazy colors, but her mood was darkened with loneliness. The Donuts stopped and turned to look at Princess Jaclynn.
“Jaclynn, please take Princess Emma to her room,” the Donut King said and Princess Jaclynn nodded her head and shuffled away. Emma followed her, as did the servant, and they twisted and turned through the colorful castle until Jaclynn stopped in front of two brightly painted doors.
“This is your room,” Princess Jaclynn pointed to the door on the right, “and this is my room right next to yours,” She gestured to the left door. Jaclynn reached up to the door knob, twisted, then pushed. The door creaked open and Emma walked into the room. The room was mostly bare, besides a tall dresser and a bed with sprinkles on the sheets. The servant placed her bags on the floor and, with a curtsy to the young princesses, rushed out of the room. Emma lowered her head and stared at her shoes.
“Do you want me to leave you to get unpacked?” Princess Jaclynn asked, stepping closer to the open door. Emma noticed her desire to leave, but she didn't want her to go so soon, even though she wasn't the biggest fan of her attitude. She would be all alone then.
“Um,” Emma began, trying to think of something to keep her here for, “would you like to do something?” She asked, not knowing what to suggest.
“Maybe later. You should get unpacked. I'll let you do that now,” Princess Jaclynn dashed out of the room and Emma heard Jaclynn's door open then shut.
Emma sighed and sat on the couch, feeling discouraged. How was she ever going to get through this summer?
Glazed Part Three
Jaclynn sat in her room, next to her dolls. She picked up one and cradled it in her arms.
“I don't know what to do!” said Jaclynn to her doll, “She seems boring and it's always awkward around her. I know I shouldn't write her off as boring just yet, but I can't help it. She's going to ruin my summer,” Jaclynn sighed, “if only there was a way to break the ice between us. But she seems so distant and reserved. I don't see us becoming friends-” She stopped mid-sentence, “Wait. Maybe I can break the ice with showing her my Donut powers!” Jaclynn stood up and placed her doll back onto the floor. Nodding her head, Jaclynn skipped back to Princess Emma's room and knocked on the door.
“I hope this will work!” Jaclynn murmured to herself. She heard the soft pattering of Emma's footsteps, then the door popped open and Emma's head poked out.
“Oh! Come in, Princess Jaclynn,” Emma opened the door wider and Jaclynn noticed that she had already begun unpacking. A couple dresses lay on the dresser and a doll stood up on the bed. Princess Emma stared down at her brown shoes and Jaclynn noticed that the rims of her eyes were red.
From crying? Jaclynn thought then shook away the thought.
“I have something to show you!” Jaclynn grinned widely and Princess Emma's eyes grew a little rounder.
“What?” Princess Emma questioned. Jaclynn sat on the rainbow rug and motioned for Emma to sit as well. Taking a deep breath, Jaclynn smiled and flexed her fingers. Three sprinkles flew from her palm and quickly disappeared. Jaclynn glanced at Princess Emma and saw her mouth hanging open.
“How?” She breathed. Jaclynn shook her head, grinning.
“I don't know! My parents think that because I'm a Donut, my donutness got caught up inside me and gives me the ability to make donut-themed things into existence. The side of Emma's mouth curved up in awe and she grabbed hold of Jaclynn's arm.
“Do it again! Do it again!” She chanted and Jaclynn brought her hand into the sky and glaze flew to the ceiling and fell to the ground. Touching the clear glaze, Emma giggled.
“That. Is. Amazing.”
Jaclynn grinned broadly. Ice broken.
Glazed Part Four
The days whizzed by and Princess Emma and Princess Jaclynn became fast friends. They spoke about everything with each other until they couldn't think of anything else to say. Then they babbled and made crazy things up. The days became weeks and summer was almost over. Only a week left.
“Jaclynn, summer is almost over!” Emma gasped. Jaclynn nodded her head sadly.
“I know. I thought that this summer was going to be terrible, but you turned out to be so much fun!” Jaclynn sighed and sat down on the floor. Emma mimicked her and fell to the floor, too.
“I hope I can come again next summer. And the next,” Emma said. Jaclynn nodded her head, smiling a little. They stayed in a sad silence for a few minutes until Jaclynn looked around them, scooted closer to her friend and whispered, “Can I tell you a secret?” Emma's eyes widened and she nodded solemnly.
“I think that you're my best friend,” Jaclynn leaned back, grinning.
“You're my best friend too!” Emma cried.
“Yay!” They both cheered, then hugged.
“We're best friends!” They cheered. Their giggling soon stopped and Emma frowned.
“If we're best friends, we should have nicknames for each other!” Emma suggested and Jaclynn nodded her head. They sat back and thought for what seemed like forever.
“What about Mushy for you!” Emma stood up excitedly and hopped up and down. Jaclynn wrinkled her nose and shook her head.
Emma sighed sadly and sat back down.
“When I first met you, I thought that you were boring,” Jaclynn admitted. Emma gasped and giggled at the thought of it.
“And then you learned that I was crazy!” Emma laughed with Jaclynn.
“You're definitely a kooky Cookie!” Jaclynn chuckled, then gasped.
“What?” Emma asked.
“Kooky Cookie! That should be your nickname!”
Emma thought for a second, then shook her head, “It's too long.”
“Then what about just Cookie?” Jaclynn suggested.
“Yes, simple and true to who I am!” Emma agreed, “if I am going to be named after a dessert that I am, then you should be the dessert that you are! Donut doesn't sound very cute, so, what about... Dee! It's short for Donut!”
“PERFECT!” Jaclynn shouted. The newly named princesses hopped up to their feet and danced around in celebration.
“I now dub us as Cookie and Dee! Best friends forever!” Emma said and they laughed together.
Glazed Part Five and Six
The last week of summer shot by until there was only one more day until the Cookies picked up Emma. 'Cookie' and 'Dee' played all day outside until the sun began to set.
“Princess Emma and Jaclynn! It's almost dark! Come in and get ready for bed!” A servant called. The two girls ran to the servant, out of breath.
“We aren't called Emma and Jaclynn anymore! It's Cookie and Dee remember?” Jaclynn said once she caught her breath. Emma nodded in agreement and followed Jaclynn into the castle.
“Oh, this'll be mighty confusing for the Cookies having a Cookie daughter named Cookie!” The servant murmured to herself.
Emma brought her blankets and pillows to Jaclynn's room and let it all fall to the ground with a rustle of fabric.
“I'm so excited that tonight we are going out with a bang and having a sleepover for my last night with you, Dee!” Emma grinned and Jaclynn nodded. Emma left and walked back to her room to gather anything else she may have dropped. A servant packed all of Emma's things back into their bags and Emma felt a sudden ache in her chest. This place was becoming another home to her and she hated to think of leaving. She was excited to see her family again, but she was going to miss 'Dee'. Emma sighed and grabbed a fallen pillow and dragged it back to Jaclynn's room. The sun had set and the room was falling steadily into darkness. A breath of fear swept through Emma as Jaclynn blew out the candle that was for light.
“Oh,” Emma whispered as the room was cast into complete darkness. She heard 'Dee' crawl into bed and Emma felt her way to her bed and lay down, her heart beating wildly. She didn't want to seem like a baby and tell Jaclynn she was afraid of the dark, but she couldn't sleep like this! Her breath came hurriedly as the blackness encased her. Emma whimpered and curled up into a ball as anxiety filled her body, crippling her. She heard blankets rustle and she saw a light coming towards her.
“Cookie? What's wrong?” Jaclynn sat next to Emma's make-shift bed on the floor and frowned. Floating in her hand, she held a glowing donut with her powers. Emma glanced down at her blankets and sighed.
“I'm afraid of the dark,” Emma admitted. Jaclynn smiled understandingly and focused on the glowing donut in her hand. The donut grew and grew as she fed her powers to it until it was the size of a pillow. Jaclynn swiped away her hand. The donut, still glowing, fell to the floor.
“Here's your new pillow!” Jaclynn said and scooted the pillow to the spot that Emma's pillow used to be.
“Thanks, Dee,” Emma replied, her face and hair illuminated by the donut's light. The chocolate chips in her hair looked like black rocks in a bright white river. Emma saw Jaclynn crawl back into her bed and she heard her sigh as she fell asleep.
Emma shut her eyes and snuggled into her new donut pillow. The scent of the donut lulled her to a sweet sleep and she couldn't resist.
“Dee! Dee!” A heavy form moved on Jaclynn's body and she opened her eyes. Emma bounced on top of the bed and Jaclynn yawned.
“What are you doing up?” Jaclynn asked through another yawn.
“I'm not tired! I wanna play!” 'Cookie' hopped up and down until Jaclynn's teeth rattled.
“Go back to bed! We'll play in the morning!” Jaclynn said and shut her eyes.
“Dee. I leave in the morning,” Emma whispered sadly. Jaclynn opened her eyes and sat up.
“What do you want to do?”
The girls tip toed down the halls and carefully opened the ball room doors and let it shut silently. 'Cookie' pulled Jaclynn away from the door and giggled.
“Do it! Do it!” Emma urged and Jaclynn raised her hands into the air quickly and a shower of glaze and sprinkles rained down. Emma raised her own hands and hopped up and down as sprinkles landed in her hair.
“What else can you do?” She asked. Jaclynn bounced into the air and slammed both feet on the ground. Glaze spread onto the ball room floor and covered it entirely.
“More!” Emma laughed and Jaclynn flung her hands around and huge donuts popped up onto the floor.
“Let's make a Donut Man!” Emma cried and stacked a donut onto a bigger donut. Jaclynn bounded over to her and helped her finish the donut man. They added a head and they gazed at their Donut Man. Jaclynn frowned. He was awkward and looked weird. Jaclynn twirled her hands over him and his face grew two blue M&M eyes, sprinkles lined his mouth, and his torso grew two long donut arms.
“He's a proper Donut Man, Dee!” Emma gasped and flung her arms round him, “He needs a name! Let's name him Fred!” Jaclynn and Emma laughed.
"No, let's name him McGlaze!" Jaclynn offered and Emma grinned.
"I love it! It's perfect!"
“More glaze!” Emma giggled and Jaclynn threw her hands to the sky and more glaze and sprinkles shot up in the air.
“More!” Emma repeated and Jaclynn produced more.
“I never wanna leave!” Emma cried.
“Then don't! Stay with me!” Jaclynn replied. Emma stayed silent for a second, then stacked a donut onto another, and another, and another. She climbed up onto her stack and jumped up into the air.
Jaclynn, seeing what Emma wanted her to do, created another stack of donuts with her powers. Emma hopped onto another stack that Jaclynn created, then another. The game continued to go on around the ball room and Emma jumped faster each time.
“Cookie, don't jump so quickly!” Jaclynn shouted as her magic formed another stack. Emma jumped faster and Jaclynn struggled to keep up. Jaclynn took a step back and her foot got caught in a donut hole. Breaking her concentration to look down at her foot, Jaclynn's eyes shot back to Emma, mid-jump. Time slowed down and Jaclynn screamed, “Emma!” but it was too late. Jaclynn thrust a donut stack blindly and her magic hit Emma.
“No!” Jaclynn shouted and, pulling her foot out of the donut, ran to her friend. She grabbed Emma's shoulders and leaned her unconscious body to the side.
A chunk of her golden hair turned a sticky pink and Jaclynn gasped, her little body trembling in fright.
“Cookie,” Jaclynn breathed.“MOM! DAD!!!” Jaclynn screamed at the top of her lungs.
How did this happen?! Jaclynn thought as she shook Emma. She waited a few moments, then her parents came rushing into the ball room and gasped as they saw Princess Emma unconscious. They raced to them and scooped her up.
“I'm sorry!” Jaclynn cried.
“We need to get her to a doctor!” The queen said, who was holding Emma. The king gazed out into space as he thought of a plan.
“I know where we need to take her,” The king whispered.
Glazed Part Seven
They rode off on candy cane horses, towards the mysterious food people that her father was taking them to. They flew into the gloomy forest surrounding the fjord and wove through the dark trees. They slowed the candy horses at a stone circle and slid off of their horses. The family approached the stone circle, not noticing a curious small boy following them with his baby reindeer.
“Please, help!” The king shouted yet the stone circle seemed to be completely empty. Then the earth began to shake and they huddled close together. Round spots in the dirt began to rise slowly from the earth until the thin round spots were towering above the royal family. The tall tube-like people formed faces at the top of the tubes and arms and legs soon followed. Jaclynn gasped at the spindly figures and realized what this food was. These peculiar people were of the souffle kingdom!
The souffles whispered in shock and confusion.
The tallest souffle lumbered towards the family and called out, “Your Majesty,” he lowered himself in an awkward bow and his brown beady eyes gazed at Emma to Jaclynn, “born with the powers or cursed?”
“Born, and they're getting stronger,” he informed. The souffle held out his arms and the queen handed Emma to him.
“You should be very glad that the blast hit her head, not her heart. The heart is...Never mind. The head can be persuaded, luckily,” the souffle said as he touched his hand to her head.
“Do what you have to,” the king replied. The souffle nodded and brought his hand away from Emma's head. Sprinkles of magic drifted out of her head and hovered in front of the family.
“I recommend we remove all magic. Even memories of magic, just to be safe. But don't worry. I'll leave the fun, nothing will change besides that.” The magic in the air played memories of the two friends, slightly distorted so that Emma and Jaclynn had no donut magic fun. The souffle lowered the memories back to Emma's head and smiled, “she will be okay.” The pink streak in her hair faded back to blonde.
Jaclynn's eyes widened and she touched the souffle's arm.
“She won't remember I have donut powers?” Jaclynn asked.
“Listen to me, young donut,” The souffle waved his hand in the air and a scene played in the sky of a girl with donut powers, “Your powers will only grow. There is beauty in it,” the souffle paused and the scene shifted and became violent, “But also great danger. Fear will be your enemy,” the scene exploded and Jaclynn backed away to her family.
“We'll protect her!” The queen said.
“She can learn to control it, I'm positive,” the king added, “Until then, we'll lock the gates, we'll reduce the staff. We will limit her contact with people. Including Emma,” he continued, looking down at the two friends. They departed from the souffles hurriedly and rushed the two girls back to their castle. Fear grew rapidly in Jaclynn's heart as she glanced at Emma's still form. Once they returned to the castle, the sleepover was forgotten and the two girls were separated to their rooms. Jaclynn didn't sleep that night. Her powers had almost killed her best friend. She knew that her parents' plan was for the best, but she was still scared. Everything would change, unlike what the souffle had said. Worry planted itself into her mind and she couldn't go to bed. The night stretched on forever until the sun crawled from behind the far away mountains and shone on the rainbow floor. Jaclynn sprung out of bed and ran out to the hallway, desperate to see how her 'Cookie' was doing. Her parents were obviously as worried about Emma as she was and were already in her room asking her questions.
“I'm fine,” Emma said to her parents, who were hovering around her like bees, “the sleepover was fun, nothing happened.”
“Cookie!” Jaclynn shouted and Emma's eyes lit up as she jumped off of her bed. The queen was surprisingly fast and blocked the friends out of each others view.
“Just a second, Emma, we need to talk to Jaclynn for a second,” the queen said and scooted Jaclynn out of the room.
“You finish packing,” the king instructed and Emma nodded hesitantly.
The king and queen shut the door and looked at Jaclynn.
“We can't let your relationship go as it was. I'm sorry. It's for Emma's safety, you want to protect her don't you? If what happened last night happened again and she wasn't alright, then our kingdoms could go to war, the Cookies and the Donuts, they could,” The king said and touched Jaclynn's shoulder.
“Now we have some new rules to establish with you later, once Emma is gone home,” the queen added as she steered her away from Emma's door.
“Everything will be fine. We're hoping Emma won't even come back,” the king said and with that, pushed Jaclynn into her room and shut the door.
Glazed Part Eight
Emma placed her last doll into her bag and clasped the latch. She was so excited to see her family again! And she had an idea to share with them too. Emma sat on her bed and waited for someone to come and fetch her. Growing restless, Emma twisted around to the window and stared out. She thought she could see the faint speck of a carriage coming toward the castle, but it was just a smudge of dirt on the glazed window glass. Emma licked her thumb then rubbed it on the glass. The smudge came off but there really was a carriage much closer than that speck would have been.
Emma squealed in excitement and skipped out of her room and down to the court yard where the cookie carriage was coming straight to the gates. She hopped up and down excitedly and waited for the King and Queen of Donuts and 'Dee' to come to the court yard. Thinking of the king and queen, Emma remembered how weirdly they had acted when she woke up. They had asked her the same questions about how she had felt and what she remembered about last night over and over, it had made her laugh. The king and queen did appear from the castle and glided next to her. A servant with Emma's bags followed them.
“Where's Dee?” Emma questioned, glancing around.
They shared a look and, frowning, said that she was busy starting her first day of studying and classes.
Emma frowned and looked up to where Jaclynn's room's window was sealed tight. Through the glazed window panes she could make out Jaclynn's round face and bouncy hair. She wasn't doing her studies, so why wasn't she down here to say goodbye?
The carriage scampered through the gates, pulled by chocolate horses, and stopped in front of the trio. The king, queen, and princess exited from the doors.
Emma screamed with joy and flew to her family and embraced them, taking in their Cookie scent.
“How did you like it here? Did you have fun? Did you make friends with Jaclynn?” her mom asked Emma and Emma nodded vigorously.
“I call her Dee now and we are best friends! I wanted to see if I could come next year and make this a yearly thing,” Emma explained her idea to her family. They nodded and smiled.
“I think that could be arranged!” Her father said and went to go talk to the King and Queen of Donuts. She watched as they spoke. The King and Queen's eyes opened wide and their lips turned up in thin smiles, but their eyes were scared when her dad explained Emma's idea. Their eyes darted to each other and to Jaclynn's window and Emma's brow furrowed. They nodded their heads but it seemed like a forced movement. Soon, Emma's father came back with a smile on his face.
“They said that they would love to have you next year!” He cried and Emma clapped her hands in joy. She scurried to the King and Queen of Donuts and smiled warmly.
“Thank you for everything! 'Til next year, and the next, and the next!” Emma laughed and hopped joyfully to the carriage and followed her family into it. The coachman snapped the reins and the horses twisted back out of the gate and towards the Cookie Kingdom. Emma stuck her head out of the window and waved her hand to the castle.
And there was 'Dee' again, looking mournfully out the castle window.
Glazed Part Nine
The year flew by and soon it was summer again. The Cookies had waited in anticipation and the Donuts had waited in dread. Jaclynn still had little control over her power and fear had overwhelmed her heart. The moment Emma had left the castle grounds, the Donuts had explained the new rules for her new life. No longer was she to use her powers, she was to subdue them, to control them, and until she could do that, no powers. She was to wear gloves at all times to contain the out-of-control power. And her parent's favorite, new motto was “Conceal, Don't Feel,”. Her magic was now a curse, no longer a blessing.
And so the year went by and it was summer again in Dack-A-Woodle-World.
“Jaclynn! Come on! Don't dilly-dally we have Emma coming in only a couple moments! They're already at the gates!” Her only servant, Miriam, chided Jaclynn, who procrastinated in her room. Her heart was so worried that she felt she might be sick. Her parents had given her strict rules concerning socializing.
Gloves always on.
Be as far away as possible from her without being suspicious.
And so many more smaller rules within those rules.
Jaclynn hesitantly followed her maid out to the courtyard, how she had the year before.
The same cookie carriage stood out front on the courtyard and Emma was there with her family. Emma grinned broadly when she caught sight of Jaclynn and Jaclynn returned it with her own smile. Her stomach clenched as she walked towards the Cookies.
“Dee!” Emma screeched and careened to her, arms outstretched.
Coming in for a massive hug, Emma flung her arms around Jaclynn and held tightly to her rigid body.
“Aw! Why did you put your hair up in a bun, I love it down. And wow! It makes you look so much older!” Emma said and touched a ringlet that hung out of the immaculate bun. Jaclynn took a step away from Emma and swept the curl behind her ear with a gloved hand.
“Pretty gloves! I love the colors!” Emma grabbed her hand to see the glove better. Jaclynn gasped and ripped her hand away from her grasp. Emma looked at her with wide eyes and frowned.
“Is something wrong, Dee?”
“No, but excuse me. I need to get some air,” Jaclynn rushed back into the castle, her safe place, and stifled back tears. Why was everything so wrong?
Glazed Part Ten
Emma bit her lip as she watched her best friend retreat back to the castle. Shrugging, she turned back to her family and hugged them goodbye. She followed a servant to her room and hesitated when the servant guided her to turn left at the staircase and not to go up it.
“Uh, ma'am, I spent last year up there...” Emma trailed off as the maid continued to direct her down the foreign corridor.
“Well, I guess this is where I'm staying this year,” Emma muttered to herself when the servant dropped her off in an empty room and left without a word. Like the year before, she unpacked her things hurriedly and stormed out of the room to go find 'Dee.' She climbed the stairs and traveled through the halls until she found Jaclynn's room. Emma knocked enthusiastically onto the hard wood door. The door creaked open and Jaclynn appeared.
“Dee!” Emma cried and pushed her way into the room with her.
“Emma!” She shouted and pulled away, “You need to leave!” She thrust a pointed finger out the door and her lip quivered, “You're not supposed to be in here!”
“Oh. I-I'm sorry,” Emma whispered and stepped out of the room, shocked by the use of her first name. They had agreed that the first name usage was only for arguments, “Is something wrong, Dee?”
“No. I just-” Jaclynn pushed the door shut until only a sliver of her face could be seen, “nothing's wrong.” Jaclynn clicked the door shut and Emma stood, staring.
Something was wrong. Something was definitely wrong.
The day passed uneventfully and Emma mainly spent the hours sitting in her room with her dolls. She wanted a play partner, but the Queen of Donuts had said that Jaclynn had studies to attend to and wouldn't be able to spend much time with her through out the summer.
So Emma waited.
And she waited.
Until she could bear it no more. She wanted to spend time with her best friend and 'Dee' must feel the same way. Emma flew to Jaclynn's room and was about to knock again, when she heard the soft murmur of conversation. Holding her breath, Emma placed her ear against the door. She was shocked at her own violation of privacy, but something told her that it was important.
“I'm scared! It's getting stronger!” Came a shout from the other side of the door.
“Calm down. Getting upset only makes things worse. Just, don't worry,” A voice said, presumably the queen.
“NO!” Shouted Jaclynn, “Don't touch me. I don't want to hurt you.”
There was silence from the other side and Emma scrambled down the hallway and to her room.
She lay on her bed and stared up at the pink ceiling.
What is she keeping from me?
Glazed Part Eleven
The months crept by, and Emma's hope for friendship seemed to fade from her grasp. Whatever secret Jaclynn was keeping, she was keeping it silent. She didn't seem to be the carefree girl that she had became friends with the year before. She seemed scared now. Scared of what, Emma didn't know. But she didn't want to admit that they weren't friends anymore. On rare occasions, Jaclynn would come out from her room and join dinner or breakfast and the two girls would talk like nothing had ever happened. Those were the moments Emma lived for. But they were rare and always too short. Jaclynn had the new, weird habit of not wanting to be touched and she always stayed far away from her. But the months were gone and fall drew closer as did the day that Emma was to leave.
“I just have such a good time with her when I can see her, and it looks like she has a good time, too, but why can't she see me more often, why?” Emma asked her doll as she stroked its silky hair. She had began speaking to her dolls not long after the first few weeks of summer.
Loneliness did strange things to people.
“Maybe I can demand to see her more often, but that's not very much like me, now is it?” She continued. The doll stared out into empty space. Sighing deeply, Emma placed the doll to the side and flopped onto the bed. There was only one more week to summer.
Glazed Part Twelve
Jaclynn sat crouched at her bed door. The gloves did seem to help, but they couldn't subdue her emotions. Every kind of worry pushed and pulled her at every moment. She laid her head on her knees and cried. She cried for her powers, for her fear, for her frustration. But she cried especially for her 'Cookie.' She didn't want to lose the friend she had just gained, yet she didn't want to hurt her either. How could she balance everything with her powers out of control?
Jaclynn brought her head up. Whenever she spent time with her, she felt so relaxed, even with the threat of her powers. But she couldn't breach her safety so that she could feel better. Emma was her first priority. And that's how it had to be.
Jaclynn spent the rest of the day in her room and the next day, conscious of Emma leaving at the end of the week.
“Then she'll be safer when she leaves,” Jaclynn said to herself.
The week passed and Jaclynn got ready to escort Emma to the courtyard. She walked out to the hall solemnly and to her room where she was waiting.
“Emma,” Jaclynn said in front of her door, her fingers curled into fists to stop any magic that might leak out, “time to go.” Emma staggered out of the room with bags piled in her arms.
“I thought you had servants who did this, Dee!” Emma wheezed.
“Uh, they were let go. Here, let me help you,” Jaclynn grabbed a couple of bags from the top and looped them around her arms.
“Thanks,” Emma breathed and managed to get the remaining bags under control. They walked slowly and silently to the court yard, Emma just a step behind Jaclynn, until Emma said, “Dee, why aren't you calling me Cookie anymore? Why didn't you spend any time with me this summer?” Emma paused, “Did I do something wrong?”
Jaclynn stopped, her eyes wide. Suddenly, her hands turned cold and she sensed glaze creeping from the glove seams. Panicking, Jaclynn began to run from Emma with the bags in her hands to the court yard.
“Dee!” Emma shouted and ran after her. Jaclynn continued to race to the courtyard then dropped the bags to the ground. Glaze goo stuck to the bottom of a bag where Jaclynn's gloved hand had touched it. Wiping it off, Jaclynn turned to see Emma struggling to her.
“What was that?” Emma asked, irritation flashing in her eyes.
“Sorry,” Jaclynn murmured, “We are still friends, Cookie,” Jaclynn said with a sad smile, “We'll always be friends. No matter what. This summer was just especially busy, but I'm hoping next year...everything will be...under control.”
A look of relief swept over Emma's face and her body lost some tension.
“I am so glad! I was worried with how you've been acting. I thought that maybe I had made you mad!” Emma sighed.
“Good,” Emma grabbed the bags Jaclynn had dropped and added them to the pile already in her arms. The carriage was already inside the gates and Emma went immediately to it and threw her bags into it. She waved to Jaclynn, grinning ear to ear, the horses neighed, turned around, and dashed back to the road. Jaclynn shuffled to her parents and gazed up into their worried faces.
“What's wrong?” She asked. They looked down at her.
“She's coming again next year.”
The years continued to go by in repetition. Emma went to the Donuts every summer and every summer Jaclynn's power grew stronger as well as her fear. Jaclynn spent more time within the confines of her room fretting over her magic, and Emma spent more time talking to her dolls. Why she continued to come every summer, she wasn't exactly sure, but she had the feeling that she needed to. That Jaclynn needed her in some way. Also, to show friendship and trust between the two kingdoms, the Cookies demanded that Emma go to the Donuts every summer, if she liked it or not. Which, to a degree, she did like, but she still felt like she was doing something wrong with Jaclynn. But yet they still felt like friends. Confused by her emotions, Emma continued to go to the Donuts until she was nineteen and Jaclynn twenty-one.
Emma's carriage jostled to the castle's massive, pink gates. They were only ever opened when Emma was coming. The gates creaked open and Emma couldn't avoid staring at the rusted hinges as the carriage pulled them through.
“Hello!” Emma said as she stepped out of the carriage and straightened her dress. A servant, straight as a toothpick, stood waiting for her. Emma was used to this kind of welcome, but 'Dee's' parent's were usually there to meet her, too.
“Hello,” She replied as Emma came up to her.
“Where are the King and Queen?” Emma looked around. The servant glanced down to her black dress and her face softened. Gazing at the black dress, Emma's eyes grew wide.
“What happened?” Emma whispered.
“Their ship was drowned while they were traveling, Your Highness,” The servant replied, her eyes glistening.
“Oh,” was all Emma said. They stayed in respectable silence until the servant gestured for them to go.
“How is Jaclynn taking it?” Emma asked as she looked down at the servant.
“We don't know, Your Highness.”
“What does that mean?” Emma questioned, her brow furrowing.
“She hasn't left her room ever since the King and Queen left on their trip,” the servant explained as she walked to Emma's guest room.
“I am so sorry for your loss. I truly feel terrible. They were somewhat like second parents to me,” Emma sighed and lowered her head solemnly. The servant nodded her head and stopped at a familiar door. Opening the door, Emma slid into the room and dropped her bags.
“Thank you,” she said.
“You're welcome, Princess,” the servant began to leave when she scooted back, “Oh! Highness, there is to be a coronation for Princess Jaclynn, since she is to be queen. It's to be on the last day of the week.”
“Thank you!” Emma dismissed the maid and she scampered away. Emma stepped away from the open door and touched her chin thoughtfully.
A coronation for 'Dee'?
Emma grinned. This would be a perfect time to talk with her friend! She could finally speak to her about their relationship, share her concerns and problems, her hopes for it to become better. They were supposed to be best friends, but she hadn't even seen her the past two years. Emma sighed as she thought of the two friends finally reconnecting and being like how they were meant to be.
Maybe that's it, Emma thought, Maybe this is why I come back every summer. Because I know what we are meant to be. What we could be. I'll never stop trying to fix us, because those glimmers of our friendship are what we can be. And she's worth it.
Emma unpacked her things giddily, feeling that her feelings were set straight.
The week slid by as slowly as a snail. Having nothing to do, Emma stayed in her room mostly and occasionally knocked on Jaclynn's door, which always went unanswered. She began talking to portraits since she was too old for dolls. She spilled her excitement and nervousness about the coronation to random pictures that she found around the massive castle, knowing she looked crazy but grateful that no one could actually see her. She explored the grounds and hoped to find a secret passage way, to no avail. Finally, the week had passed. It was the night before the coronation and Emma felt that her insides might explode with anticipation. Emma went to bed that night filled with so much anxious energy she could barely fall asleep. But around midnight, she drifted into a sleep filled with donuts and cookies hugging.
Light filled Emma's room and a firm knock sounded on her door. Dazed, Emma's eyelids opened halfway and she burrowed her face into her pillow.
“What?” Emma asked, her voice contorted and muffled by the pillow that smelled like warm glaze.
“Princess Emma!” Miriam, the maid, shouted.
Taking a huge breath, Emma pulled her head out of the pillow and shouted back, “WHAT?!”
The maids never woke her up, something must be different. Still in a sleep stupor, Emma sat up on the bed.
“Sorry to wake you, Princess-” the servant started. Emma gazed at the sun and noticed it was probably around eleven.
“No! I've been up for hours,” Emma stated as she briskly shoved her covers off and cleared her head.
There was something she was supposed to do today...
“What is it?” Emma asked, her legs dangling from the bed.
“I'm here to remind you about the coronation,” the servant replied.
“The coronation!” Emma gasped and leaped to her feet. She rustled through her dresses and picked out her fanciest one. It was perfect for the occasion, with varying shades of brown to display her Cookie-ness. She changed dresses, brushed her hair, and curled it with her fingers and a sticky substance of glaze that could keep curls from falling out. Then she added the finishing touches. She placed her chocolate chips into her hair, fidgeting with them until she declared them perfect, then clipped back a curl with a cookie clip. She wrapped her Cookie pendant around her neck and stared into the mirror. She saw her beyond excited expression and took a breath. Today was the day.
She raced out of her room and down the colorful halls, she kicked up sprinkles that covered the blue floor and spun around a passing maid who was carrying a tray.
“It's coronation day!!!” Emma squealed and continued on her gleeful rampage throughout the castle. She would finally be seeing her best friend.
Jaclynn stood shakily in her room, dreading the day ahead. This day was of massive importance. The gates would be opened. Desserts of all kingdoms would be flooding through those gates and she would have to repress her powers in front of everyone. Her hands shook as she practiced taking the donut ball and the pink scepter from the priest. She held the two props up and icing began to tingle from her fingers. It soon enveloped the two objects and she hurriedly threw them back onto the table.
“Conceal, don't feel,” Jaclynn whispered to herself, tears beginning to run down her cheeks as she said her father and mother's saying. She missed them almost more than anything and a tremor ran down her spine as she held back tears.
“It's only for today,” Jaclynn reminded herself as she slipped her gloves back on. She opened her doors and addressed the servants waiting for her.
“Tell the guards...” Jaclynn suddenly felt a stab of anxiety that cut deep into her core. She couldn't do this, she wanted to call the whole coronation off, yet she knew she couldn't, “to open the gates.”
The gates were opened and people began to walk inside the courtyard and mill about. Emma's heart filled with joy at the sight of all of the people. It was about time that the gates were opened, and she noticed the sparkling hinges with a happy laugh. Emma pushed against the flow of the crowd and flung herself onto a little wall to see the stream of people coming in. She continued skipping through the road and down a flight of stairs. Seeing all of these people was making Emma energized. She raced down a set of stairs and twirled at the edge of the dock. She bounced farther down the road and twirled again with her eyes shut, feeling a giddy laugh bubble up inside of her, when something slammed into her side, sending her tumbling into a docked boat.
“HEY! Watch where you're going!” Emma shouted. A huge horse face moved closer to her and she batted her arms in annoyance.
“I'm so sorry, are you hurt?” A handsome man with red hair jumped off of the horse and stepped carefully into the boat. He reached out a hand and Emma looked up at him in shock.
Who is he? Emma thought, her mind spinning.
“Uh, no, I'm okay... thanks,” Emma smiled at him and took his hand, wondering why she had said thanks to someone who had thrown her into a boat.
“Oh, thank goodness... I am Prince Cedric of the Pastry Isles,” he introduced himself with a little bow.
“Princess Emma, of Cookie Doodle Land,” Emma greeted.
“Princess?” The prince's face turned to confusion, then shock as he bent to the floor of the boat in a dramatic bow, “Your Highness!”
Emma's face turned pink as even the horse bowed. Emma drew a quick breath as she realized that the horse was the one keeping the boat from toppling out to the fjord. The horse lifted its foot as he bowed his head, and the boat tipped to the water and Emma flailed her arms as she lost her balance. Cedric toppled too and landed on top of her. The horse stomped its foot on the boat and it lurched, sending the duo sprawling to the other end of the boat.
“Oh, um, sorry,” Emma murmured and they got up.
“I'd like to formally apologize for hitting a princess with my horse, it was an honest mistake.” Emma scooted to the dock ground.
“I'm fine, really, I'm not anyone special or anything, no one will send guards to arrest you!” Emma chuckled at the thought, “It was only an accident!” Emma stepped out of the boat. “So, lucky you, it's just me!”
“Just you?” He questioned.
The two stood staring at each other with smiles on their faces. Faint bells dinged in the castle and Emma snapped out of her trance.
“Bells. The coronation! Oh, no, I have to leave!” Emma looked back to the castle earnestly, “I need to get there! Bye!” Emma sprinted to the castle and ran towards the coronation.
The room was filled with silent people and the priest and soon-to-be queen stood at the end of it. Jaclynn faced the priest, her heart hammering inside her chest. The priest held the crown in his hands and Jaclynn bent from her waist down for him to place it on her head. Little donuts dangled from the twists and spires of the tiara. Next, the priest offered her the donut and the scepter and Jaclynn's face turned pale. She reached out for the objects when the priest cleared his throat.
“Your Donutness, the gloves.”
Jaclynn glanced at the gloves and she clenched her teeth.
Of course! She slipped them off and shakily took the donut and scepter.
The priest began a chant in the native Donut language and Jaclynn faced the benches of people, including Emma. Jaclynn's eyes darted to the donut and scepter and a creeping glaze inched around the items slowly. Jaclynn set her eyes to the back of the room and prayed that the chant would be over soon. And for what felt like years, but was only a few seconds, the chant ended and the priest finished.
“Queen Jaclynn of Diddle Pop Land.”
Jaclynn twisted back to the priest and tossed the semi-glazed items onto the cushion and shoved her gloves back onto her hands.
“Queen Jaclynn of Diddle Pop Land,” the room chorused and they filtered out to the ball room.
Music blared from a lively orchestra at the edge of the room and dancing couples swung and skipped to it. Everyone laughed and smiled at the joyous occasion. The dance finished and one of the servants announced the two princesses together. Emma was to stay with Jaclynn for the night, to show the alliances between the two kingdoms.
“Queen Jaclynn of Diddle Pop Land. Princess Emma of Cookie Doodle Land.”
The crowd bowed to the two royals and Emma positioned herself next to Jaclynn.
Emma looked at her 'Dee' and opened her mouth to say something. She wanted to talk to her, ask her her questions, tell her how she felt, after all, this was what she had been waiting for, yet every word escaped her.
She shut her mouth and looked out to the ball room, feeling defeated.
Emma's head snapped to Jaclynn.
“Hi?” She questioned. She hadn't spoken to Jaclynn in at least two years, and now she was saying hi? How do you respond to that?
“Um, hi...” Emma whispered, stunned.
“You look very nice,” She continued. Emma smiled and she felt like a sudden weight was inching its way off her shoulders.
“Thank you! You look so pretty! I like your hairstyle, Dee,” Emma replied.
“Thanks, Cookie,” Jaclynn grinned. Emma felt ecstatic and her smile made her cheeks ache, they were still calling each other by their nicknames! They looked out at the boisterous people and Jaclynn took a breath, “So this is what a party is like?”
Emma nodded her head, “Yes! It's so fun seeing the different dessert people-”
Emma noticed Jaclynn's nose taking deep, long breaths.
“- and smelling them too!” Emma and Jaclynn giggled at the joke. Jaclynn opened her mouth to say something else when a short older man swaggered to the girls. He bowed to them and smiled cockily.
“Greetings, Your Highnesses, I am the Duke of Ice Creamtown, as your second closest partner in trade, it seems only fitting that I offer you your first dance as Queen, Your Majesty!” Emma glanced at Jaclynn's face and noticed her face turn a shade paler.
“I-I don't dance,” She muttered and flicked her gaze to Emma, “-but Princess Emma does!”
“Oh!” Emma cried out in surprise. “No, really, I don't think-”
“Lucky yooou!” The Duke hooked his arm around hers and pulled her through the crowd of people, not listening to her attempts to tell him no. They began to dance and Emma tried not to look at him too closely. He had snow white hair with yellow highlights and wore a white suit with golden accents. From his appearance, it wasn't hard to guess that he was Vanilla Ice Cream. The Duke hopped up and down next to Emma and one of his cream colored boots slammed onto her toe.
“Ow!” Emma clenched her teeth. Good thing he was so small and didn't weigh much.
“Speaking of, so nice to have the gates open! Do you know why they were shut in the first place?” The Duke drew nearer on tiptoes, “Hmmmmmmm?”
Emma leaned away from him, “Um. No.”
The Duke seemed disappointed momentarily and then smiled again.
“Oh, well,” he said abruptly and looked at the ballroom with a scrutinizing glare, as if he could learn the answer if he focused enough. The dance ended a few minutes later and Emma staggered back to her friend, her toes throbbing from the duke's constant stomping.
“Well! He was...” Jaclynn trailed off, thinking, “enthusiastic.”
Emma and Jaclynn laughed until Jaclynn said, “Are you okay?”
“Yeah, I'm fine! I'm better than fine really. This is so nice. I'm talking to you...” Emma smiled hopefully, “I want it to be like this all of the time.”
“Yeah, I'm fine! I'm better than fine really. This is so nice. I'm talking to you...” Emma smiled hopefully, “I want it to be like this all of the time.”
Jaclynn nodded her head and smiled back, “Me too,” Jaclynn's smile slowly vanished and she looked away, “But it can't."
“Why not? This-”
“It just can't!” Jaclynn snapped. Emma's eyes widened and she took a breath.
“Excuse me,” Emma whispered and she stepped away, leaving Jaclynn looking sadly at her.
How dare she talk to me like that? I was just offering my opinion! She makes me so frustrated! One minute we're best friends, the next she's biting off my head! A sudden feeling worked its way into her chest and she felt like she was going to cry, but I'm mad! She was so preoccupied with her thoughts that she didn't notice a large servant hurry past her, bumping into Emma and making her trip on her dress. She cried out as she fell to the floor when a hand grabbed hers and pulled her up.
“I was just looking for you,” he said with a grin.
“Cedric!” Emma breathed out in relief. The music started up with another song and Cedric bowed.
“May I have this dance, Your Highness?”
Emma blushed and stammered out, “you may!”
Cedric straightened and began to dance with her. They floated across the dance floor for a few minutes, then Cedric guided her away from the ball room. They walked down some hallways and he asked Emma what things she does for her spare time. She dove into the story of her coming here and what she would do when she was bored and Cedric listened to it all. It felt so good to be able to talk to someone, since Jaclynn had shut her out again. Of course she could talk to people when she went home to Cookie Doodle Land, but talking to someone in Jaclynn's castle felt satisfying, like she was doing something she always wanted to do. They continued meandering through the halls, chatting and making connections when they came to a balcony. They walked out to it and sat down on a bench.
“So how many brothers did you say you have?” Emma asked.
“Twelve older brothers! Three of them pretended I was invisible. Literally! For two years!” Cedric chuckled and Emma frowned.
“Gosh, that's terrible!”
He shrugged, “It's what brothers do. And the others weren't much better either.”
“I guess it's the same thing with friends, I think. Jaclynn and I were really close, then she just shut me out and...I don't know why. I feel like that's not right, but I don't really know. She's the only friend I've ever had,” Emma sighed and looked down at the colored glass bench.
“I would never shut you out. You're an amazing person,” Cedric touched her hand and Emma gazed into his brown eyes. He seemed to want to say more, but he stayed quiet.
“Can I say something crazy?” Emma blurted.
“Can I say something crazy?” Emma blurted.
“I love crazy!”
“Whenever I am here, I never get to see anyone, talk to anyone, but now I've met you and I just feel like something has changed, that things are going to turn out right!” Emma smiled and hoped she didn't sound weird or cheesy.
“I was thinking the same thing! I've always been trying to find my place with my brothers, but with you I feel like I've already found it!” Cedric beamed. Emma gasped- he felt the same way!
“I can't believe it! We're so alike!” Emma cried.
“I can't believe it! We're so alike!” Emma cried.
“Do you want to go for a walk? I want to ask you something,” Cedric replied, slightly nervous, and Emma nodded eagerly. They walked out of the castle, to the royal garden.
“So, you said your crazy thing, now it's turn for my crazy thing,” Cedric bit his lip as he smiled. He fell to one knee and took one of Emma's hands.
“Will you marry me?”
Emma gasped. She didn't know what possessed her, but she believed she was in love with him, “Yes!”
Jaclynn greeted a man and a woman as they came near to her.
“Congratulations, Your Majesty!” the woman said.
“Thank you,” Jaclynn replied stiffly. A fast movement in the corner of her eye got her attention, and she turned to see Emma and a man wearing a red, white, and tan suit approach her.
“Dee! Uh, I mean Queen. Me again. May I present to you- Prince Cedric of the Pastry Isles.”
“Your Majesty,” he greeted with a bow.
“I would like to introduce you to my fiance! We are going to get married!” Jaclynn took a step back.
“Marriage? Fiance?” she asked incredulously.
“Yes!” Emma giggled.
“Um, I'm sorry. I'm confused. How do you know Prince Cedric?”
“We met today and we fell in love and he just proposed, well, we haven't worked out all of the details yet, of course- Oh, wait. Would we live at my castle?”
“Woah, woah, Emma!” Jaclynn exclaimed, waving her hands.
“Oh! We can invite all twelve of your brothers to come to my castle! Of course I have the room!”
“Wait. Slow down! You really shouldn't-” Jaclynn's eyes flicked to Cedric and she took a breath.
“Can I please talk to you? Alone.”
“No, anything you have to say to me, you can say to the both of us,” Emma frowned as she hooked her arm around Cedric's.
“Fine,” Jaclynn took a deep breath, “You can't marry a man you just met.”
“You can if it's true love!” Emma justified.
“What do you know about this man, what do you even know about true love?” Jaclynn asked.
“More than you! All you know is how to shut people out, and not just strangers but your best friend!” Emma scowled. Jaclynn sucked in a breath. Tears formed in the corner of her eyes and she gritted her teeth.
“You can't marry him, you don't even know him. It's not wise, that is all I'm saying. Now if you will excuse me,” Jaclynn began to walk away.
“You aren't the boss of me! You may be the queen, but you can't make me not marry him! I can marry him, and I will!”
Jaclynn scowled, “I'm not saying you can't. I'm saying that you are being immature with this permanent decision that will affect not just your life, but the lives of your people!”
“Your Majesty, if I may-” Cedric started but Jaclynn cut him off.
“No, you may not. And I think that the party is over. Tell everyone to leave, then close the gates,” Jaclynn told a servant. He nodded and walked away.
“What? Dee, no! No, wait!” Emma grabbed her wrist but Jaclynn yanked away, and her glove was torn off. She snatched at the glove but Emma held it firmly.
“Give me my glove!” she demanded.
“Dee, please listen! I don't want to see you live like this anymore!” Emma pleaded.
“Then don't come back next year!” she snapped. Jaclynn turned back to the door and Emma stood in shock.
“What did I ever do to you?” Emma questioned, stepping towards her. People began to notice the escalating argument and within moments, they had an audience.
“No! Why? Why do you shut me out? Why do you shut everyone out? What are you so afraid of?” Emma yelled. Jaclynn squeezed her fists shut and clenched her jaw.
“I SAID ENOUGH!” Jaclynn screamed and whizzed to face her. She swiped her bare hand out and a spray of wild, spiked sprinkles grew from the floor toward the people who watched. Everyone gasped and took a step back, clutching the people around them, afraid. Emma heard the Duke murmur something about sorcery.
“Jaclynn?” Emma whispered, her eyes wide in fear. Panicked, Jaclynn pressed herself against the door, her hand feeling for the donut knobs. Her fingers grasped the knob and she burst through the halls, her shoes clinking on the floor. She had to get out of there. She had to escape. She raced to the courtyard, her mind spinning. She thrust the doors opened and a huge crowd of dessert people greeted her there. Hearing guards yelling behind her, she ran out into the courtyard, trying to find a way through the cheering crowd, then bumped into a peasant woman.
“Your Majesty? Are you alright?” she asked, concerned. Jaclynn shook her head and stepped away from her.
“No,” she muttered as she continued to back away. Her back hit the fountain wall and she threw her hands behind her to steady herself. Her hand hit the wall and hard, cold glaze shot out over the fountain, hardening the water and giving it a milky fog inside the jagged spikes. Everyone gasped and scrambled away from her, just like how they did in the ball room.
“There she is! Get her!” The Duke screeched as he appeared in the entrance of the door accompanied by fierce looking soldiers. Jaclynn's heart pounded uncontrollably as fear, dread, and stress grabbed hold of her.
“Please, just stay away from me, stay away!” Jaclynn lifted her hands in defense and spikes of glaze tore out of her hands and towards the Duke and the guards. The Duke slipped on the glaze and fell onto his back.
“Monster! MONSTER!” he bellowed. Jaclynn gazed down at her trembling hands and she felt her stomach weave itself into knots.
She really was a monster.
Jaclynn squeezed her eyes shut and shook her head, then sprinted out of the courtyard, through the gates, and down to the fjord in a desperate escape from the kingdom.
Emma pushed past the guards and ran after her, her hair flying in the night wind.
“Dee! Dee! Wait! Stop! Please, Jaclynn! Stop!” She shouted after her, but she didn't even know if she could hear her. Jaclynn came to the edge of the fjord and her foot touched the very edge of the water, turning it into hard milky glaze. Jaclynn's eyes grew wide but she heard the shouts of her friend drawing closer. She knew she had to leave if she ever was to have freedom. She touched the fjord with her shoe and it hardened instantly. She faced the forest of trees ahead of her and sighed. She began to run on the water, glaze hardening it each step she took. The glaze spread across the whole fjord until it was completely hardened. Jaclynn struggled through the forest and out of sight from the castle.
Emma and Cedric hurried back to the castle courtyard in a daze. Emma walked with her head down and Cedric followed her trail. As they entered the courtyard, the villagers were staring at the sky in awe and horror. They held out their hands to the air and Emma noticed for the first time that little rainbow specks were falling from the clouds.
“Sprinkles?” A woman shouted.
“Yes, sprinkles!” Another replied. Emma raised her hand and a pink sprinkle fell onto it.
“Did you know?” Cedric asked her. Staring at her hand, Emma shook her head.
|(ugh, big hand.XD)|
“No.” Emma couldn't believe it. Jaclynn had donut powers. And they just had a terrible fight. Emma had to go after her. Her pride was bruised, but she had to talk to her and fix it.
“Look! IT'S SNOWING! It's snowing with her evil power! The Queen has cursed this land!” The Duke of Ice Creamtown shouted, then turned to one of his cream colored body guards, “She must be stopped, you have to go stop her!”
“Wait! No!” Emma exclaimed. The duke gasped as he whizzed around, a blur of white against the dark courtyard.
“YOU!” He screamed, pointing at her, “Did she cast her witchcraft power onto you, you have always been here every summer....learning witchcraft, are you her apprentice?”
“No!” Emma shook her head, “I'm just a normal Cookie.”
The duke looked skeptical.
“Besides, Jaclynn's not a monster-”
“She practically killed me!” The duke cut in. Cedric raised a finger.
“Uh, you only slipped,” He justified. The duke crossed his arms and scowled.
“This is all a misunderstanding!” Emma stated, trying to calm down the two irritated men, “I started the fight, so I am going to go after her and set things right.”
Cedric's eyes widened and he touched her shoulder, “What?”
“Bring me a horse!” She ordered to a fretful servant. The servant raced away to the stables.
“Emma, you can't! It's too dangerous!”
“She's not dangerous. I'll bring her back and everything will turn out just fine.”
“I'm coming with you,” He remarked.
“No,” Emma replied, she didn't know why she didn't want him coming, but she didn't, “Uh, I need you to stay here and watch over her kingdom for me and keep an eye on the duke.”
“On my honor,” He said, bowing his head, but he remained frowning at the thought of letting her go alone. The servant came back with a chestnut colored horse that had white hair and Emma hopped up onto the pink and cream saddle and clasped a cloak around her neck.
“I leave Prince Cedric in charge. I will be back,” Emma gazed down at Cedric, “I promise.” He nodded and Emma felt her heart flutter. He was so handsome. She smiled down at him, then kicked her horse into a gallop out of the royal courtyard.
Jaclynn took another step up the mountain. She was lost, she was cold, and her feet were killing her. Turning to look at how far away she had ran, Jaclynn gazed out at the view. The far away castle did nothing but glisten in the moonlight. She turned back to the mountain and couldn't help to feel anything other than sad. But the night was growing colder and she would be needing a place to stay. She sat down and buried her face in her hands, when she felt the warmth of her glove against her freezing cheeks. She stared at her gloved hand and sighed.
How long would she continue to hide from everyone? How long would it take for someone to find her? What would they do if she did find her?
Jaclynn's eyes widened as she thought of the gruesome possibilities. She continued thinking about what could happen until she couldn't take it anymore.
“Stop this right now,” She whispered to herself, “I need to stop worrying about people finding out about this. I need to let go of my fear-”
Jaclynn gazed at her hands and stood up, smiling, “-and embrace my power as a gift. Like when I was a child.” Jaclynn ripped her glove off and flung it into the sky. She unfastened the clasp on her cape and let the heavy cloak fall to the ground. She walked away from the cape and she felt her spirit lighten as the weight of her fear slowly slid away.
She walked farther up the mountain, then imagined a glaze staircase, and she pushed the magic surging inside her out of her hands. The staircase appeared just as she imagined it and she raced up it. Grinning, she scanned the area at the top of the staircase and an idea formed in her head. Jaclynn brought her hands up and let her powers do the rest. A castle made of hardened, icy glaze twisted up the side of the mountain and Jaclynn wove her hand through the air, guiding its walls and ceiling into place. This was to be her new home, where she could stay and be safe from the others. As the castle finished its last touches, she thought about her old home and Emma.
She choked back a sob and shook her head. She reached up to her tiara and fingered the donut charms that hung from the gold crown. She squeezed her eyes shut, then thrust it away.
She wasn't going back. They had nothing to offer her.
Pushing away her past felt freeing and she continued remaking her new self, spirit soaring. She grabbed the donut pin that kept her hair in a tight bun and ripped it out, letting her curls fall around her shoulders as the headache embedded in her skull finally relented after so many years of the same painful hairdo. She flicked her hands around her dress and a colorful new dress began to grow from the bottom of the skirt until it reached her throat. The magic swirled around her head and the dull blue sprinkles in her hair changed into a rainbow of colored sprinkles.
Jaclynn walked out to the terrace, eyes blazing with power as she felt her magic forging inside of her, setting her free. And Emma was safe, she thought with satisfaction and a tiny shard of pain. The sun rose from behind the hills and Jaclynn grinned. Now she was how she was meant to be.
Emma's horse pushed through the sprinkles that covered the ground. Emma was a little unnerved by the sprinkles everywhere, but she tried not to think about it. What did they mean? It wasn't a normal thing that happened in nature, it must be connected to Jaclynn's magic, but why would she make the weather do this? She shook her head, trying to clear away the peculiar thoughts and focused on finding Jaclynn.
“JACLYNN!” Emma shouted to the forest, “Jaclynn, it's me, Emma, your best friend. Or at least, I think we're still best friends. I mean, you just kind of kept the biggest secret of your life away from me and I don't know how we stand...” Emma trailed off, “This is all my fault,” She whispered to herself. Jaclynn wasn't out there. She wouldn't be able to hear her. She wandered hopelessly deeper into the forest, where the trees were thickly coated with sprinkles. The horse brushed up against a tree subconsciously and the sprinkles hanging precariously on the branches came crashing down on the horse's rear. Spooked, the horse bucked and threw Emma into a pile of sprinkles that were unnaturally cold. And sticky. The horse bolted up the trail and was gone within seconds.
“WAIT!” Emma screamed, but the horse had disappeared. Emma glanced down at the gooey mess she was in. The sprinkles were covered in a web-like material and Emma stared at it, her brows furrowing as she gazed at the webs. She felt an itch on her shin that was deep inside whatever she was in and she raised her eyebrows.
What had she fallen into?
She struggled to get out of the hole, when hundreds of little brown spiders scurried from the depths of the nest she had been dropped into.
“AHHHHH!!!” Emma shrieked and she pushed herself out of the hole, but she still felt the spiders crawling on her. Screaming, she batted frantically at herself and shook her head as she tried desperately to get the insects off of her. She swiped her arms to get rid of any that were crawling on her and she rustled her dress. Once she had gotten rid of all the bugs she could find, she stared curiously at the nest, from a safe distance away. She didn't know that spiders stayed in nests. But these were chocolate spiders, different from the regular spiders that often roam the earth. Chocolate spiders stayed together always and had large holes in the earth where they all lived.
Emma walked away, still feeling like they were on her. She sighed as she looked at her dress, it was sticky and had the stains of crushed chocolate spiders stuck on it. Shivering, she drew her cloak around her bare shoulders and staggered away.
Emma had walked for hours in the cold sprinkles when she spotted smoke coming from a clearing in the trees. Emma gasped and stopped her shivering.
“Fire!” Emma cried and she stepped toward the clearing, then slid down a sprinkle covered hill surprisingly elegantly for someone so gangly. She hurried to the shack that came into view as she made her way to it.
Emma stood in front of the hut and she cocked her head to the side. Hopefully they were open. She opened the door and a blast of warm air washed over her. She shivered and stepped to the register.
“Hello, do you have any winter dresses and boots?” Emma asked, pointing to the window. Icy cold sprinkles tumbled to the already sprinkle covered ground.
“It's over there,” the man at the register, who seemed to be a churro, said and he gestured his hand to the far corner. Emma shuffled to the back of the little store.
“Uh, I was just wondering, has anyone else come by here? More specifically the new Donut queen?” Emma questioned as she looked through the scarce choices of apparel. She saw a dark brown dress with a tan cape and cap and grabbed it, along with a pair of boots that looked like they would end up being too big.
“No, sorry. The only one crazy enough to be out right now in this weather is you,” Emma frowned and placed her outfit on the table. The door behind her creaked open then slammed shut.
“You and him,” the man added. Emma twisted around to see a man in a thick, brown and tan sweater and pants dusting sprinkles off from his clothes. The pattern on his sprinkle-stained shirt was swirled together and Emma guessed he was a coffee cake. He was tall and muscular but other than that, Emma couldn't tell much about his appearance. A cap covered his head and a piece of brown cloth covered his nose and mouth.
He walked over to the two and he glared at Emma.
“Move,” he said through his mask. Emma grimaced.
“Excuse me?” she remarked, but she scooted to the side. The man rolled his brown eyes and pointed at the shelf that was lodged in the desk.
“I needed something in here,” he explained. Emma crossed her arms and muttered something under her breath.
“A real wacky storm don't'cha think? What could be causing it? Where could it be coming from?” the man at the desk asked, obviously more enthusiastic to talk to a man. The man put a throng of carrots on the desk and grabbed supplies from the winter department as he processed the question.
“The North Mountain,” he replied as he walked back to the desk. Emma contemplated his answer. Where was that? Was that where she should look for Jaclynn?
The cashier counted all of the prices of the items from the sprinkle covered man and he said, “That is forty.”
The man scrunched his face together. “What? No, make it ten!” he demanded.
The cashier snorted and looked at the things the man had gotten. “I'm sorry, but that's just not going to work. We have a supply and demand problem going on because of these being from the winter supply...”
“You want to talk about supply and demand issues, I sell ice for a living!” the man exclaimed.
“Oh gosh! That's-” Emma cut in, listening to the conversation. She looked at the man who gave her a bitter glare, “-that's too bad..”
The cashier shrugged, “Still forty.”
“I only have ten, come on. Help me out,” he pleaded. The cashier stared at the supplies and he shoved the carrots to him.
“Ten will pay for that only. There,” The cashier said.
“Hey, could you tell me just one thing. What was happening on the North Mountain? Would you say it was-” Emma fluttered her fingers, “-magical?”
The man rolled his eyes and pulled down his face mask.
“Yes, now would you stop cutting in, I need to deal with this crook!” he replied. The cashier's eyes widened and he stood up from his chair.
“What....did you call me?” he asked in a dangerously slow and quiet tone. The man said nothing, but looked helplessly at the cashier's size.
“If I am such a crook, then get out of my shop and don't buy anything!” the cashier shouted. He grabbed the man and burst through the door and chucked him outside.
“DON'T COME BACK!” he finished and strode back into the shop.
“Sorry,” he grumbled and set aside the carrots and supplies.
“You just want these two things?” he asked and gestured to the dress and boots.
“Um...” Emma's eyes darted from the supplies to the window where she could spot the man getting up and brushing himself off. She knew that the man knew more than she did about navigating and that he could get her to the North Mountain. She bit her lip and stared at the supplies. She knew what she had to do.
Emma changed quickly into her new dress and discarded her old, sticky one. She placed the cap on her head and fastened the cape around her shoulders with a cookie clasp. She grabbed the bags of supplies she had bought from the cashier and she walked out to the frigid forest. She heard faint music playing from a barn that was right beside the shack. Emma walked to it and she heard the man humming a tune softly along with the accompaniment of a lute. She rested her head up against the door of the barn and heard the song end. She pushed through the door and smiled.
“Nice song,” Emma said. The man and his reindeer, which was covered in a crumbled topping, jumped at the sound of someone.
“Oh,” The man relaxed, “It's just you. What do you want?”
Emma took a breath. “I want you to take me to the North Mountain.”
The man stared at her suspiciously. “Yeah.. no. I don't do that sort of thing.” He settled back down on the floor as if the conversation was over.
Emma frowned and gripped the sack in her hand, “Here. I bought you your supplies for your payment.” Emma tossed it to him. He opened the sack and stared at its contents. He didn't say anything for the longest time, so Emma added, “Please.” He still didn't reply.
“Come on. I know how to stop this weather,” Emma gestured to the open door and the sprinkles and glaze that fell from the sky. The man sighed.
“Ugh, fine. We'll leave in the morning.”
“No,” Emma replied, “We need to leave now. Right now.” Before he could say anything else, she walked out as he glared at her.
She paused once she slid behind the door and waited to see if he would follow.
The man appeared with his reindeer and Emma smiled. They went to his sleigh and he began to load it.
“I'm Emma,” she said with a smile as he finished tying the harness onto his reindeer.
Without looking up, he said, “I'm Wes. And this-” he patted the reindeer, “-is Crumbles.”
The reindeer snorted as if he was agreeing to the fact.
“Nice to meet you both,” Emma replied. Wes glanced at her while he tightened the straps. He huffed and shook his head with a tiny smile.
“Well, okay, then,” Emma whispered to herself and pulled herself into the sleigh.
They whizzed through the mountains and Emma could barely catch her breath.
“Hang on, we go fast!” Wes cried. Emma gripped the sleigh in front of her and gulped in a breath as the air burned her cheeks.
“That's okay, the faster we go the faster we get to Jaclynn,” Emma replied, but her voice was carried away by the wind.
“So, what made the queen go all magic crazy?” he questioned as he steered Crumbles through the maze of sprinkles and glaze.
“Oh, well, it was my fault, I guess,” Emma sighed and grabbed her cap from falling off, “I got engaged and then she was worried for me and freaked out since I had just met him that day, and she said she didn't think I should marry him but I disagreed and we-” Emma was cut off.
“Wait. You got engaged to someone you had just met... that day?” Wes asked, gazing at her like she was insane.
“Yep, so, she got upset and I got upset then she tried to walk away and it was just so frustrating that she kept leaving me and so I grabbed her hand to try to stop her from leaving again, but I ended up just ripping her glove off-”
“WAIT. You got...engaged... to someone you had just met that day?” Wes exclaimed, gawking.
“Yes!” Emma cried, exasperated, “Stop interrupting, please! As I was saying, she wore the gloves all the time, so I didn't even know why she wore them, except for some crazy fantasies I imagined up-”
“But how could you even think about marrying a stranger?” Wes cut in again.
“Wes, oh my gosh, stop interrupting me! But, if you have to know so badly, Cedric is no stranger. We are in love,” Emma crossed her arms.
“Really? How can you know who he truly is if you've only met him the day of? Do you even know his last name?”
Emma grimaced, “Fine, I'll amuse you, but you are acting just like Jaclynn! His last name is...of the Pastry Isles...”
“Favorite food?” he interrogated.
“Pastries,” Emma fibbed.
“Best Friend's name?”
“Brown!” Emma exclaimed. Something she actually remembered.
“How in the world would I know that?!” Emma shouted.
“Have you even had a meal with him yet?” Wes asked, looking at her, “What if you don't like the way he eats, what if he eats with his mouth open?”
“Ew!” she screeched, “He is a PRINCE!”
Wes raised an eyebrow.
“Those things don't matter! If it's true love, which it is, you can look past all that stuff!” Emma said.
“You mean their personality, their character, who they are inside?”
“No! Would you stop questioning my choices? It's true love and that's that!”
“I don't think so,” Wes disagreed.
“It doesn't matter what you think. Are you an expert?” Emma snapped.
“No,” Wes replied and looked down at his reins and out into the forest, “but I have friends who are.”
Emma bit back mean remarks, but her eyes rolled, “You have friends who are love experts? I'm surprised you even have friends.”
He frowned, having heard something. Wes' eyes searched around him and Crumbles slowed his pace, his ears twitching.
“What? What's wrong?” Emma asked, her heart beating faster. Wes didn't reply. He sniffed the air. “What?” she shouted.
“Shhhhh!” he hushed her. Emma gazed around at the forest. She didn't see anything.
“Crumbles, go!” Wes snapped his reins and Crumbles bolted.
“What's going on, Wes? What is it?” she shouted, her hair flying as they tore through the forest.
“Spoiled whipped cream wolves.”
“What?” Emma cried, straining her eyes to see through the filmy fog for whipped cream wolves as Wes had said. Spoiled? Emma shuddered. Becoming a spoiled food was a nightmare of all of the dessert people. She had never seen a spoiled food and she didn't want to. They were said to have lost their minds and became crazed.
“Go, Crumbles, go!” they both urged. Flashes of green, brown, and white whizzed by them and Emma could smell the stench.
“Ugh! Is that what they smell like?” Emma gasped, gagging. Wes nodded and bent over the back of the sleigh, where the supplies were. He fumbled with a torch and light until the torch lit up. He handed the torch to Emma and she grabbed it with gloved hands. She could smell the spoiled wolves gaining on them. She twisted to face the wolves and waved the torch.
That's when a wolf came into view.
Mostly gray with black spots and green streaks, the wolf was horrid. With a foaming mouth and scraggly fur, it looked just as insane as Emma had been told. And there were more with it. She couldn't hold back her shudder as she inched as far away from the edge of the sled as possible. A wolf lunged for the sleigh and Wes grabbed an unlit torch and whacked it in the jaw. Emma grimaced when she noticed several teeth fall out of the beast's mouth.
“Don't get bitten! Their bites are poisonous!” Wes advised as he hit another on the head. It's spotted body fell off the sleigh and Emma kicked a wolf which was climbing up the side. She knew that if one of them bit her or Wes, then they themselves would become spoiled, too. Her heart sped up. Her wolf fell off the sleigh, unconscious. The wolves began to fall behind inch by inch, but a new problem was arising. Emma glanced at where they were heading and she gasped.
“WES!” warned Emma, grabbing hold of his sleeve. Ahead of them was a gorge and Crumbles was racing there, the wolves still in pursuit. Wes whizzed around and his eyes widened.
“Jump, Crumbles!” he ordered. He grabbed Emma and threw her onto Crumbles sugar coated back. Emma clutched his harness, biting back a scream.
Wes cut the rope tying the sleigh and Crumbles and Emma gasped.
Was he going to fall into the gorge?
But her thoughts were cut short as Crumbles pushed off from the edge of the gorge and sailed to the other side. Emma's heart caught in her throat and her insides felt like they had left her body. Crumbles landed and she was almost thrown off balance from the impact. He ran a couple more steps farther for safety then looked back to see where Wes was.
But her thoughts were cut short as Crumbles pushed off from the edge of the gorge and sailed to the other side. Emma's heart caught in her throat and her insides felt like they had left her body. Crumbles landed and she was almost thrown off balance from the impact. He ran a couple more steps farther for safety then looked back to see where Wes was.
The sleigh had lost its momentum and only got a couple feet out when it began to plummet into the gorge. Wes threw himself out of the sleigh, his arms outstretched. He managed to grasp the edge of the cliff and pull himself up with the help of Crumbles and Emma.
“Are you okay?” Emma asked. He gazed down to the gorge where the sled had crashed.
“Yeah.” He groaned, burying his face in his hands.
Feeling guilty, she looked down the cliff spotting the remains of the crushed sleigh.
“I'm sorry about that.” Emma hesitated. “I'll go now, and you don't have to help me. You've already helped me get this far. When I get back to my castle after this I will send you a new sleigh and all of the things inside of it, I promise.” She took a deep breath. “Bye.”
Emma turned to the forest and continued hiking when Wes sighed and yelled, “Wait. We're coming.”
“Oh!” Emma turned around. “Thank you! I really am sorry about your sled, but I'm glad you decided to come.”
Wes trudged to her and lifted a pack he had grabbed from the sled before it had fallen.
“I'm only coming so I can guarantee a new sled. ”
Crumbles pushed in between them and Emma draped her arm across the reindeer's back, ignoring Wes' remark.
“This may be the start of a beautiful friendship!”
Emma, Wes, and Crumbles pushed on through the mountains to where Wes said the North Mountain lay. At one point, Emma looked back from where they had begun and she spotted Jaclynn's castle, nestled deep down below the mountains. It seemed to be completely covered in hardened glaze and Emma shivered.
“Dee's kingdom.” She sighed. Wes noticed her absence and walked back to her.
“Wow. It's completely glazed,” he breathed.
Emma thought for a moment. She couldn't bare to see it like that, and what if Jaclynn wouldn't fix everything? She stared at the sprinkles on the ground that she knew was caused by Jaclynn's magic. Emma turned back to the path and shook her head. She couldn't doubt Jaclynn, but the worry continued to gnaw at her.
Emma and Wes could finally see the North Mountain in the distance. At least, they should have been able to. Thick caramel colored clouds blocked the view from where they were and Emma couldn't make anything other than a vague silhouette of the mountain. They hiked through the mountains, Emma's legs killing her, when they came across a lake that had hardened from the unnatural cold, but it wasn't clear. It had a beige tint to the water and pink, blue, and orange sprinkles were frozen in the lake. Trees were covered in sprinkles and Emma gasped. She could smell the donut smell beckoning her and she took a deep breath of the delicious air. Crumbles constantly licked the ground, tasting the sweet toppings that covered the ground. Now he was licking the trees, where sappy glaze had stuck to the trunks and branches.
“This is beautiful,” Emma noted, and Wes nodded his head. She heard a sigh.
“It really is beautiful.”
Emma whirled around and stared at Wes. He looked at her with the same look.
“Hello?” Emma asked, searching the scene around her, “Is anyone here?”
“Well, yeah,” the goofy voice said.
“Then show yourself!” Wes demanded.
“Uh, I am! Look down!”
Emma's eyes immediately shot to to the ground and she jumped. There in front of her was a Donut Man, the kind she and Jaclynn would make out of the snow. Or was it snow? She felt like she should remember, but there was nothing in her mind except a tiny itch, as if something was supposed to be there.
“Hi, I'm McGlaze!”
Emma took a step back and raised her hand to her mouth. “McGlaze? As in, the Donut Man we had made when Jaclynn and I were kids?” She dipped down and sat next to him.
“Mhm!” He nodded his head. Emma gazed at him. He had a yellowish orange complexion, the color of glaze, three jagged sprinkles coming out from his head, one yellow, one red, and the other pink, blue eyes, a silly grin, and a donut as his body. Emma smiled. He looked just how they had created him. Back when they were best friends. Tears burned in her eyes but she shook her head to clear her vision.
“But how are you alive?” Emma questioned, scrutinizing him.
“Dee made me! That's all I know,” he replied, “Why are you so curious?”
“Because...It's not everyday that you get to meet a Donut man,” Emma laughed.
“And, she needs to find Jaclynn. Can you help at all?” Wes asked. Emma thought on what he said. He excluded himself from the journey. Would he decide to leave her at some point in the trip?
“Of course! I know exactly where Dee is! Come on everyone!” McGlaze shouted and he waddled off, Emma, Wes, and Crumbles on his heels.
TO BE CONTINUED...