cyberiad_queen: (Default)
[personal profile] cyberiad_queen posting in [community profile] adventdrabbles
Title: 'Cookies and Cocoa'
Fandom: Original Fiction
Characters: Original Characters
Rating: G

The sudden arrival of the snowstorm caught me by surprise, and swiftly left me disoriented. All I could do was keep walking, trying to ignore the way that the bitter winds seemed to cut through all the way to my bones.

I should never have come out here alone--especially on a winter evening. But the weather forecast hadn't predicted these frigid flurries that now obscured the trees and any semblance of a path. Foolishly, I'd expected Nature to be more cooperative than this.

When my snow-blinded eyes first began to make out the faint glimmerings of light that seemed to be piercing the darkness, I dared to hope that maybe I'd managed to make my way back home. Deep down, however, common sense warned me that it wasn't likely. Still, I kept hoping.

Instead of my own home, I was surprised to find a cabin in a clearing. It was lit up brightly, driving away the dim, and giving the impression of warmth and comfort that I desperately needed now.

Before I could stumble up to the porch, the door was thrown open, more welcoming light spilling out. A woman, plump and elderly and wrapped in a knitted shawl, stood there staring at me, worry in her eyes.

"For heaven's sake, get inside," she anxiously insisted, guiding me into the cabin and closing the door firmly against the elements.

"Thank you," I mumbled, gratefully falling into the chair she offered me. Removing her shawl, she wrapped it around my own shoulders, and I huddled, shivering.

My hostess turned to a nearby fireplace, stoking it until flames roared and crackled. Soon, I could feel its heat seeping into me.

"Whatever in the world were you doing out in this weather," she asked me, pushing a mug into my shaking hands. "Drink up, dear; it'll do you good."

I sipped what turned out to be hot cocoa, with a hint of peppermint. "I..." Still shivering, I took another, larger gulp of the soothing, chocolatey fluid. "I was just out for a walk; I like to go for walks in the woods this time of year."

She made a soft, scolding sound. "Best to do it in the daylight," she gently chided.

"I suppose so." I smiled a little. "Thank you for letting me impose on you like this."

Turning to a comfortable-looking kitchen, my hostess soon brought out a plate of cookies. "It's no imposition," she assured me. "On the contrary; I'm glad to be of help to anyone who'd be out on a night like this!"

"You've been an enormous help to me." I nibbled at one of the cookies, tasting hints of various spices. "I hate to think what would've happened to me if I hadn't come by this way."

Sitting in another chair close by, she smiled warmly and patted my arm. "Then let's discuss more pleasant things. It'll while away the time until the storm blows over."

So the two of us sat over cookies and cocoa, chatting about anything and everything that either of us happened to think of. We laughed at silly nothings, and became friends over reminiscences of my childhood. She had little to say about herself, but I felt strangely comfortable talking about myself with a stranger.

Before I knew it, at least three hours had passed. Outside, the winds and flurries had faded, and the moon and stars shone over the snow in the clearing. It sparkled and glittered, looking not nearly so threatening as when I'd gotten lost earlier tonight.

"I guess I'd better be going," I sighed, reluctantly leaving the cozy chair.

My hostess--my rescuer, more like--quickly bustled about in the kitchen, pouring the last of the cocoa into a thermos. She pressed it and a bag of the cookies into my hand.

"For the walk back home," she smiled. "It'll keep you warm."

"Thank you for everything," I grinned back. In just a matter of hours, I'd come to see her as more of a friend than anything else. Luck, both bad and good, had conspired to bring me to this woman's door in a time of need, and I was beyond grateful. "I'll pay you back for your kindness. I think you saved my life tonight!"

Shaking her head, she guided me outside. "No; I won't accept repayment. I won't hear of it, dear. Now, go on home, and don't go wandering at all hours when the weather is so unpredictable."

Just the same, I made careful mental notes of any landmarks I passed on my way back home. I was determined to show my gratitude, and pay her another visit as soon as I could. The least I could do, I figured, was return her thermos. She'd surely be wanting that back, and I didn't want to seem like an ingrate by keeping it.

As it happened, a few days later, the weather was clear and bright; though snow still covered the ground, there was no chance that I'd be caught up in another storm. So I went for my intended visit, smiling at the thought of renewing an unexpected friendship.

But, when I reached the clearing, I was met with the surprise of my life. There was no cabin--nor was there any sign that a cabin had ever stood anywhere within the clearing.

Perplexed, and even a bit spooked, I went home again. I wondered if, in some kind of icy delirium, I had somehow dreamed the whole encounter.

But the thermos, which I'd been carrying the whole time, gave me solid proof that it had all been true.

Date: 2018-12-05 04:16 pm (UTC)
goddess47: Emu! (Default)
From: [personal profile] goddess47
Ah! Snow!magic is a powerful thing!

Lovely!

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