I was walking in the first snow of the season when she found me.
At first, it was her blazing red hair, shining brilliantly against the white landscape, topped with a dusting of snow like a crown. But once our paths crossed, it was her eyes.
“Good morning,” she said. Her voice was cool and flat. Her eyes bore straight into me, as cold and grey as the sky above us.
For a moment, I forgot to reply. “G-good morning,” I stammered. “I… uh… looks like winter came early this year, huh?”
“Yes. Winter is here,” she said. Her eyes still did not leave mine. “I have been waiting.”
“Yeah, it seems like we kinda skipped fall. I… uh…” I desparately reached around my brain for small talk, but it was as if the cogs in my head were struggling to move. That didn’t seem to matter to her, though. She continued to gaze at me with her wide, pale eyes.
“Winter is ever so peaceful,” she said, stepping closer. “Winter allows us to stop what we are doing for a little while.”
“I’ve always… Thanksgiving… and…” The cogs in my head froze. Words wouldn’t come out.
And that’s when she finally smiled. “Come with Winter,” she said, resting her hand behind my head and petting me gently. Her fingers felt cool and soothing as they eased me closer, until our foreheads met and all I could see were her eyes. “Stop what you are doing and come with me. For a few months, come with Winter.”
She kept a close eye on me as she led me away.