Couple of days after the "Hangman Incident."
It was a dark and cold night in North workshop. Everyone had gone to sleep and Evy was safely tucked into her own cosy and warm bed, Evy thumped her chest with a fist and coughed up a little cloud of dream sand from her last meal.
Surrounding with her dear stuffed animals and bears, knowing all was right in the world, Evy's sleepy head suddenly jerked up as something gave a hard kick to her back under the mattress. Evy blinked her blurry eyes at the space in front of her, first she seen nothing except for darkness. Shaking her head to clear of Sandys dream sand, she looked around again and then quickly sat up, finding Pitch Black stand at the foot of her bed with crossed arms.
Her yellow eyes widened, she stared up at him. For a moment it was silence, but then Evy spoke with a low, soft voice. "Why are you wearing a dress?" and pointed with her finger at Pitch's dark robe.
"It is not a dress, it is a robe," he scowled, taking a half step to put some distance back between them. "and you should learn how to hold you tongue."
"Oh like this," Evy said, stuck her tongue out and then took a grip of it with her fingers. "Thheee, Ai thill tftahlk mith mou mouth."
Not bemused by the situation, Pitch was more baffled by the impudence of the girl`s act.
Placing her tongue back into her mouth, Evy smiled sweetly up at him.
"I know who you are."
"And I definitely know who you are." Pitch snarls, baring his teeth in false bravado. The shadows swarm around him agitatedly. "You're the little devil who dropped that uninvited guest into my lair wasn't?"
"You're welcome. Hoped he liked it," Evy grinned at him and quickly stood up on the bed with only her light blue nightgown on.
"I`m Evy Grey. Pleasure to meet you." she announces and showed her hand up to him. Pitch made no reply in reaching his hand to greet hers.
"We have met before I`m afraid when you were a little baby," he grunted.
"Oh. I don't remember. I must have been very small. Was I sweet?"
"Do you know any bed-time stories?"
"Not any good one, unfortunately."
Evy looked confused at it, but continued anyway. "Well, if you don't any good, scary story then...do you want to see my snail collection?" Jumping down from the bed, she rushed towards an old drawer and opened up one of the cases. Inside were small glass jars and boxes made of wood and inside it contained all sorts of bugs, ants, maggots, snails, beetles, etc.
"No, thank you," Pitch made a small grimace over it.
"My beetle collection?"
"How about my worms?" Evy wondered as she grabbed a bunch of wriggling worms out from a jar with her hand and showed it right to Pitch`s face, together with bit of earth in it. "Aren't they preeeeettyy."
Pitch`s nose wrinkled as he saw those wriggling icky creatures in her dirty palm. "Not at ALL! Who on earth gave you this obsession on filthy insects?"
"No one, except when Jack gave me this apple and there was a green worm in it and then there was these yellow small ones inside that mans-"
"I know, I know," Pitch growled "Don't need to know the details."
"Don't you think bugs are fascinating?"
"Never been in my category if people aren't afraid of them like spiders."
"I like spiders, they are cute." Evy grinned up at him. "Most people would hate them, but I think they are cute and so good."
"Their legs taste funny."
Pitch's eyes widened at what came out of Evy`s grinning mouth.
"So what you're saying is that your loves in the whole world is 1.Dream sand, 2. Bugs and 3. Candy?!" he said slowly.
"Yup," Evy nodded cheerily.
"And they say that they are the guardians of childhood," Pitch groaned and placed his hand over his eyes.
Evy`s head cocked adorably on one side as she looked up at him. "Most people would hate them, but I think they`re both cute and very practical. They help to break down dead meat and old leaves and turn it to earth again. North told me and-"
"Which for me don't want to hear thank you very much," Pitch said, ending the conversation before Evy could add any more interesting information about the food-chain. Then he kneeled down after a moment, looking Evy deep in her eyes before put a hand on her shoulder.
"Can I ask you something, and can you keep it as a secret?"
His tone was now almost fatherly, almost a little playful, as though the being in front of Evy was an actual human and not a monster playing pretend.
"And this is a big secret, only you and I shall ever know," he whispered.
Evy giggled and made a zipping motion over her lips, "Your secret's safe with me."
"I want to know what the guardians are talking about," he said, trying to show his "fatherly" and "nice" side as much as possible.
"Oh," Evy looked a little bit disappointed, but then she made a small shrug with her shoulders, turned towards the drawer, and placed the jars back in their places.
"The children of the world and how to protect them. I don't know because I haven't seen so many when Jack and I are out."
"And why is that?"
"I don't know. We have been only in the forests, not in the villages, but Jack promised to take me there one day."
"Would you like to see how a child looks?" Pitch wondered. Smiling down at Evy and reaching his hand towards her, signaling to grasp it.
And that did the trick.
The little boy, no older than seven years old, was lying in a thick layer of hay under a thick blanket over his thin body. His sister lied beside him, snoring loudly while her head was on his chest for comfort.
The room was small, grey, old and dirty and Evy and Pitch were standing in front of the bed, looking down at them.
"Is this what a child looks like?" Evy asked as she watched what the boy and his sister dreamt. It was almost the same dream. A golden world, where the children were a handsome prince and a beautiful princess. Dressing in fine clothes and being served on golden plates the most delicious meals they ever seen before.
"What a strange dream," Evy said. "They dream only of food."
"That's because they are hungry," Pitch spoke back.
"You're hungry sometimes after dream sand right?"
"Well, think of your stomach have been empty for many days."
"Well North tried with the diet of-"
"Not that kind of starving!" Pitch snapped, "When despise your effort in hard working for many hours, you don't get enough or any food at all and you go to sleep hungry and the worst part is you don't know if you get any food, nor even a piece of dry bread tomorrow either. That is what it means to starve."
"They are afraid to...starve to death?"
"Exactly," Pitch gave her a large smirk and then he touched the children's dreams with his finger and turned them into a dark blue nightmare. The plates of food disappeared, and the children's beautiful clothes disappeared, and turned into a scene where the boy and the girl sat in front of a wooden bench with nothing, but plenty of bowls of hard and cold rocks. They looked so thin and miserable that they were almost ready to reach out for one of the stones and take a bite. Not so far away, a small nightmare horse was ready to have his first meal of fear.
"Hey, stop that!" Evy shouted and to stop Pitch to completely turn their dreams into a frightening nightmare, she kicked him hard in his leg and then grabbed the newborn nightmare by the tail and disappeared in the shadows.
"Come back here you little rascal!" Pitch shouted and started running, or rather hopping with one leg after Evy.
Fortunately for the children, hearing his loud voice, they woke quickly up from the beginning nightmare, looking around the empty room with confusion and bewilderment in their eyes, but there was no sign of Boogeyman for this night. So they drifted off to sleep and dreamed of food and candy again.
Now, it was another thing to chase and find Pitch's own nightmares in the shadows. Either it was in the deepest corner in the cave or a simple bedroom he had no problem to communicate with them, but finding a six year old brat with the same abilities and having no intention to let him catch her was very, very difficult Pitch soon discovered.
He could easily imagine when Evy told the guardians what she had been up to and with whom, Pitch would soon have his head on a golden plate made by Sandy's dream sand of course and some silly Christmas ornaments by North. Jack Frost would probably give some nice "frosting" and as a final toss, his head into Bunny`s purple, sparkling lake, or that would be a sight for Manny to see, smiling down over this lovely scenery as that brat would probably sprinkling him with ants or maggots.
"Oh, what are they doing? PITCH!"
Pitch took a deep and heavy sigh. Evy hadn't rushed back to the North Pole as he expected so no worries to have his black hair turned into purple. Evy had just moved to the other part of the house to the grownups small bedroom.
Finding her in the room, Evy was still holding the nightmare with a tight grip, but was stared wide-eyed at the strange heap of blankets and furs moving up and down in the bed.
Pitch's heart almost stopped.
"Pitch? Is he hurting her?" Evy asked curiously, moving forward and took a grip on the blanket for closer inspection.
"Absolutely not!" Quickly Pitch grabbed her arms before she could take a peek.
"But what is he doing with her?"
"This is not for children to see,"' He said with a hissed voice as he tried to drag her away. The muffled voices under the blanket grew louder and the movements faster.
"Are they having nightmares?"
"NO! Definitely not."
"But they are-"
Pitch blushed a deep crimson red tone on his pale cheeks and before she could escape from his grip, Pitch grabbed tight by the collar of Evy`s nightgown, fled back under the bed, and traveled quickly back to the North Pole, and this time it wasn't funny to travel under a bed, especially hearing the couple great "finale" when they or rather Pitch fled away.
Luckily for Pitch, it was still dark outside and everyone was still asleep when they came back to Evy`s bedroom again.
Still holding in Evy in his arms, Pitch took a deep breath and sighed. "Of all these silly guardians, why me?! Next time you do a thing like that I swear-"
Noticing she was still playing with the small horse, Pitch pulled her ear. Wincing in pain, she screamed so high it made him wince in pain. Slipping out of his slim arms, Evy landed on the floor with her butt first.
Lying there, she stared angrily up at him."Why did you do that for? I just wanted to see what they were doing?"
"This is something you should ask your guardians about," Pitch muttered furiously as he took the nightmare from her and turned it back to black sand again.
"But you told me that this shall be a secret. I can't ask them. Why did the man hurt her?"
"He didn't hurt her for the man on the moon sake! It was something different."
"Very different and very inappropriate for naughty children to see, even they have seen it on the fields or in the barns, he muttered and shot a venomous look at his offspring. "Now it's time to go to bed and have your beauty sleep. I myself have other business to attend to."
"You say it's very inappropriate for children. It is the same level like telling scary stories?
"If it is not, then I`m not afraid to hear it."
"BEDTIME!" Pitch shouted and grabbed Evy under her arms, dumped her back into the bed, and quickly put the blanket over her body and her rambling mouth.
"You don't know so much being the Bo-Ho man," Evy pouted as she moved the blanket away from her face. "You should know it because you have your home under people`s beds. You should hear it because I heard it miiiiles away."
"I know perfectly well what they were doing, but this is somethi-. What did you call me?" Pitch stopped and turned around, looked at Evy who stared at him with her innocent golden eyes.
"Bo-Ho-man," she said and stuck her tongue out at him, again.
With fury, shadows started to surround Pitch as his form grew taller and more menacing. His golden eyes burned like white flames as a shark-like grin spread across his face.
"You think you`re so funny and witty. You don't know who you're mocking at," he hissed as he slowly moved closer to her. "I am the Nightmare King, the Boogeyman, and I have lived far longer than you or your lousy guardians have. I am going to show you what true horror, fear, fright, and misery really is."
Instead of hiding under the blankets, shivering in fright, Evys eyes was bright and showed her big, white teeth at him excitably. "Oh yes, please show me! Every night, please!"
"Oh yes, every night, and you can say good bye to your guardians, your brother, and your little friends," he said and took one of Evy`s jars and tossed it into one of the shadows.
"Hey, wait a minute-" Evy said as her grin turned into a frown.
Pitch`s lips curved into a smirk and finally he added, "And by the way, your snack stashes, the one you think your grandpa or Jack doesn't know about you're hiding in your closet, the cookies and chips and candy, I ate them all."
And then he disappeared into the dark, leaving Evy wide eyed, gaping after him.