Fiction Friendship Kids

Franny loved Forest School with every bit of her three and a half year-old heart. It’s the place where she first learned that she’s strong, kind, brave, special, and can do hard things. The morning affirmations that her teacher, Ms. Violet, recited with the class, daily, reinforced Franny‘s belief in herself.

At Forest School there were no buildings. Franny got to be outside the whole time, no matter the weather. If it was hot, she and her classmates played by the beach. When it was windy, they got to fly kites on the hill. Rainy days meant they could splash in puddles and squish through mud. Any day that she could be outside was a good day for Franny, but snowy ones were her favorite by far. Winter meant that they could go sledding, make snow angels, have a snowball fight, search for animal tracks, shovel, build snow forts, or snow people, and catch snowflakes on their tongues, all while wearing their coziest gear.

Spending so much time outside meant that Franny owned a LOT of different gear. Most of her stuff was handed down to her from her older cousin. Franny didn’t mind wearing the faded and worn items, but it did make her feel a little dull sometimes. Her snow gear was special, because it was all completely brand new, and so toasty warm. She felt fancy and important in her pink snow pants that swished as she walked.

Franny and her best friend Alice were busy rolling a giant snowball. It was their last day of school before winter break. Their ball was so big that it took both girls pushing together to move it. Franny stopped suddenly when she noticed that a perfect snowflake had landed on her snow pants.

“Franny! Help me!” Alice scolded her.

“Alice, look!” Franny gasped, pointing to the snowflake that was slowly melting on her pants.

“Is it snowing again?!” Alice asked, gazing up to the sky.

All at once, thousands of tiny, perfect snowflakes began to fall. Franny and Alice stood with their faces up, mouths open, and tongues out.

“I just caught one!” Franny giggled.

“So did I!” Alice added.

The two friends celebrated the falling snow by spinning in circles. They twirled so fast that they both toppled over. They were laughing so hard that they couldn’t get up. Franny wished that she could stay there, happy in the snow with Alice, forever.

They always had the best time playing together. It didn’t matter that Alice was a whole year older. Everything was better when they had each other at school. Franny was the bravest person that Alice knew, and Alice was the kindest person that Franny knew. Combined, they made an unstoppable pair.

“Tea time! Tea time! Spend some time with me time!” Ms. Violet’s enchanting singing voice echoed through the woods.

“Tea time! It’s tea time!” Franny gasped.

She popped up, brushed off her snow pants, and took Alice’s hand. It took more than one try, but eventually, Franny helped Alice get back up on her feet.

“I know what kind of tea we’re having today. It’s hot chocolate!” Alice exclaimed.

The two girls held hands and ran as fast as they could through shin deep snow. It wasn’t an easy task, given that they were wearing big, clunky boots. They were both out of breath when they finally reached the gathering tarp. The teacher and the rest of their classmates were waiting patiently. Franny and Alice sat down next to each other at the edge of the tarp.

“Today is a special day. It’s the last time we’ll see each other until after our two week break. So, we have a special treat for tea time. Hot chocolate!” Ms. Violet announced.

Franny grinned at Alice. Ms. Violet took out the thermos and began to sing the name song as she poured and passed out mugs of hot chocolate. Franny peeled off her mittens, preferring bare hands for holding her mug. The stainless steel handle felt cold, but the walls of the mug were warm. She held her cup up to her nose and sniffed the sweet drink. She knew she couldn’t take a sip until everyone had theirs, but it was hard to wait.

“Okay, everyone who wants some, has some now. Cheers!” Ms. Violet said, holding her mug out.

A few of the children sitting within reach clinked their mugs with hers. Alice held her mug out to Franny, who tapped it with her cup. Then Alice brought her mug up to her mouth. She went to take a sip, but her mittens made it hard to hold on. Franny  watched her friend’s mug slip from her hands. Hot chocolate poured out onto the ground next to the tarp. The fresh, white snow absorbed the liquid. It turned a light brown color.

“Oh no!” Alice cried.

Tears slide down her rosy cheeks. Ms. Violet jumped up to help.

“I’m so sorry Alice, I don’t have any more hot chocolate to give you,” she said, patting her back.

This made Alice cry harder. All around her, classmates were slurping up the last drops of their special treat. Most of them didn’t even realize what had happened.

“You can have some of mine, Alice. I didn’t drink any yet, so we won’t share germs,” Franny offered.

Alice took off her mittens. She wiped her eyes, and picked up her mug. After checking to make sure it wasn’t filled with snow, she held it out.

“Thanks, Franny,” she whispered.

Franny did her best to dump half of her hot chocolate into Alice’s cup. She managed to do it without spilling a single drop.

“That’s what best friends do. They share with each other, and they take care of each other, and they cheer each other up,” Franny smiled.

Alice and Franny gulped down the chocolate drink, which had already begun to turn cold. It didn’t matter though, because the love they had for one another was enough to warm both of their hearts.

December 02, 2023 03:43

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