Illustration: Maya E Shakur for FREDERICK & SOPHIE
Location: Up in the Snowy Skies
If there’s anyone who loved a full moon on a snowy evening, it was Sophie’s Fairy-Manny, George. He loved building a snowbuddy or two (or three, or seven) on the Residence’s roofterrace, and the moon’s light was the ingredient needed to wake them up from their snow slumber.
That’s why, Frederick and Sophie were up on their apartments’ shared terrace building a little snowdog as Wally helped George rolling snowballs for a snowbuddy with a large carrot nose and two thick branches as arms. George used little black stones as eyes and a jolly smile. Now he just needed a scarf and a hat to keep his snowbuddy warm (It’s a human misunderstanding that snowbuddies want to stay cold at all times). With a wink, and a swoosh, and a blink of his i-Wand 340, something soft and woolly appeared, but it wasn’t a scarf or a hat. It was Mr. Tubby, the pet-mammoth who lived in George’s wardrobe.
“Whoopsiedaisies!” George said, looking very red in the face. Mr. Tubby didn’t mind the fresh, cold air. He sat down and nibbled on a snow-covered rose branch.
Frederick and Sophie weren’t really surprised by the magical mess. Most of George’s spells went wrong twice before they went right. At least Mr. Tubby hadn’t appeared hanging in the hallway’s chandelier, like last time. You see, George was an Extremely Responsible Fairy-Manny, but he wasn’t very good at magic.
“Maybe you need to give it a twirl instead of a swoosh,” Sophie said, petting Mr. Tubby.
“Or a gurgle instead of a wink,” Frederick said, observing George holding his i-Wand in different positions as if trying to get a better signal.
“I think I just need to un-muddle the words on my Spell App. I got them all squiggly.” George said. He quickly scrolled through the Spell App on his i-Wand 340, then stopped and shouted, “Got it, all fine, nothing to worry about!” Frederick closed his eyes, and Sophie held her hands in front of her ears.
George gave his i-Wand a twirl and a twiddle, and the next minute, Mr. Tubby was dressed in a pink tutu and humongous ballet shoes on all four of his feet. It didn’t stop the mammoth from chewing on his branch. “Balderdash!” George shouted. “Sorry about that! Let me try again.” The Fairy-Manny typed another word in his Spell App and said, “Stop-A-Chute.” With one POOF! and one SIZZLE! Mr. Tubby was gone.
“Well, that’s settled then,” George said triumphantly. “Now I just need one hat and one scarf, thank you very much!” He pressed a very long word into his Spell App.
“What did you type?” Sophie asked, wiping snowflakes off her nose.
“Whippersnappersherbetsnuggle,” George answered. (Try to say that one three times fast).
As soon as he said the word out loud, a beam of light shot out of George’s i-Wand 340. Frederick and Sophie followed it to the little snowman. A scarf appeared around his neck and a colorful woolen hat covered his head. The snow dog next to him moved his tail, startling Wally who let out a short, deep bark.
“Well, hullooo, dear friends,” a voice boomed from the snowman’s mouth.
“Phew,” George said, “the spell worked. Welcome back, Hank!”
“You two know each other?” Frederick asked surprised.
“Oh, most absolutely,” Hank answered, holding out one of his branches to shake Frederick’s hand. “Hank Van der Frost, nice to meet you, Sir.” Nobody had ever called Frederick, “Sir,” and it made Frederick stand a little bit straighter.
“Hank and I go way back,” George said. “At least five hundred winters.”
“How old ARE you, George?” Sophie whispered.
“It’s not very polite to ask for someone’s age now, is it?” George replied, raising one eyebrow.
Hank walked to the edge of the terrace. “Shall we go then?” he asked excitedly. Before George could answer, Hank took some snow from his belly and blew on it, making snowflakes appear in the air. As they caught the moonlight, the flakes twinkled brightly. Some of them fell on Frederick and Sophie making their toes tinkle and their cheeks burn. As a cold breeze blew across their faces, they floated up, up, up into the moonlit sky, their mouths open with astonishment. George followed, carefully wiping some snow off his jacket’s shoulders. With his legs crossed, he appeared to be sitting on the air. Wally stayed behind to play with his new snowdog-buddy. They happily ran around the terrace chasing snowflakes.
The Park beneath looked like a wintry wonderland. Hank flew up front, enjoying all the city lights. Frederick and Sophie pointed at the lake and the buildings surrounding the park until their eyes caught the sight of a large floating object.
“Is that a pirate ship?” Sophie shouted in amazement.
George looked up and clapped his hands. “Ah yes, right in time for evening tea!”
The pirate ship floated towards them until it was so close, Frederick and Sophie could see pirates waving from its deck and masts. “Ahoy!” They shouted. “Anyone interested in a cup of pirate tea and shark cakes?” A plank appeared out of nowhere, and Frederick, Sophie, Wally, George, and Hank walked onto the ship. Here, they saw a large wooden table with a big pot of evening tea.
A pile of chocolate and strawberry shark cakes as high as George’s nose stood in the center.
One of the pirates handed Sophie a large pirate mug and said, “Go on then, miss matey! Fill ‘er up!”
Sophie, happily surprised, filled her cup and grabbed a shark cake. “These aren’t real sharks, right?” she asked.
The pirates roared with laughter, and sang, “Hey Ho, please no! It’s no real sharks for us!”
Say no more. Frederick, Sophie, Hank, and George ate as many cakes as their stomachs could handle, and drank mugs filled with tea that smelled like cinnamon and apples. They talked and laughed and talked some more. After that they got up and brushed the crumbs off.
“Always a pleasure, George,” the pirate captain said, slapping the fairy-manny on his shoulder.
Frederick and Sophie looked at each other. George seemed to go way back with lots of interesting people, pirates, and snowmen. It was the best evening ever.
But also best evenings ever come to an end. Especially when yawns start to happen.
“IT’S TIME TO GO HOME!” George shouted.
Sophie quickly put two shark cookies in her coat’s pockets. One for Wally and one for the snow-pup.
And back up in the air they went.
When they landed back on the roof terrace, it was exactly the right time for bed and a story. Wally and his new frosty friend welcomed them with wagging tails. Hank placed himself in the same spot as where George had built him. He stretched himself and yawned.
“Will you be here tomorrow?” Frederick asked the snowman.
“That’s a question only tomorrow can answer,” Hank smiled.
The snow dog happily jumped next to Hank. Both froze into their positions. George straightened Hank’s hat and walked back inside. Frederick walked back to his apartment’s entrance on his half of the roof terrace. He couldn’t wait to tell his mom all about his adventure. Not that she would believe him. Sophie followed George.
“Goodnight, Hank!” Frederick and Sophie shouted. “There’s snowbuddy like you!”