Today was not a good day.
Elsa had woken up with an ache in her stomach. Not one of bad food or illness but instead the pangs of her elemental friends. Gale rushed in only seconds later, confirming her feelings.
They rushed her out to the edge of the stream that lead to the Dark Sea. Nokk and one of the Earth Giants- one Olaf had affectionately named Brock- were standing off like two knights before a duel whilst Bruni watched on in awe.
"At least one of you is sensible," she muttered to the air elemental. Gale simply fluttered through Elsa's hair- their way of laughter she had learned.
Elsa gave her siren's call, getting Brock and Nokk's attention. There was irritation in both of their faces, but Elsa was not attuned enough yet to understand their conflict without words or contact. Before she knew it, the elementals were fiercely fighting one another. Nokk threw streams of water whilst Brock retaliated shaking the Earth below.
Elsa ran out in between the spirits, holding her hands up. "That's enough!" she shouted, walls of ice building on both sides of her, but it wasn't enough. Brock smashed through the ice, tossing more at Nokk. Desperate times called for desperate measures. "Gale? A hand here?"
Gale lifted her up on top of the Brock, giving her the vantage point she needed. Elsa stood atop him, touching his head. Magic surged through her body into his, feeling all of Brock's emotions. He was angry, upset with how his stones were being eroded by water. He wanted revenge with Nokk.
Elsa spread a thin layer of frost, hoping to cool the giant down both physically and metaphorically. It wasn't much, but there wasn't much Elsa could do. Even still it appeared she made the wrong decision.
Brock bucked her off, sending her flying. She had shot off multiple rays of ice, desperate to save herself from the fall. While she was successful in that task, it couldn't prepare her for what was to come.
A child's cry.
Elsa ran towards it only to discover a small child, no more than five years old, a familiar snowflake pattern seared on her face.
Hours later, the child was back in her mother's hut. She was wrapped in warm blankets and receiving plenty of love and attention. Elsa had been able to dissipate the ice quickly, and had thankfully not gone beyond the surface. The only lasting injury would be some light bruising to her face that would be gone in a few days time. Her mother reassured her that it was not her fault, accidents happened, but that didn't stop the guilt from wracking her whole body.
She rested on the cot in her own hut worrying. All she could see when she found the young girl was Anna. She had hurt someone with her magic. Again. It may have been an accident, but so was that fateful night.
She held Sir Jrogenbjorgen tight in her grasp. It felt silly, an adult woman clutching her childhood toy, but he gave her comfort. Anna brought him for her to comfort her when Anna could not. Deep breaths lead to shaky tears when she caught sight of Jrogenbjorgen's cape: two little gloves.
It had been so long since she had worn them. Anna was there. She was there to keep her level, keep her calm. It was easier to control with her support. But Anna wasn't here and it was hard to breathe and she was a danger to everyone.
The gloves kept the monster contained. She couldn't risk it again. Even if her magic was a gift, it was a gift that could not be controlled. Her heart throbbed as the satin covered her palms and fingers. It felt so wrong, but it would be best for everyone.
A familiar mantra whispered in her ears, soothing her in spite of everything: conceal, don't feel; conceal, don't-
Elsa felt the lump in her throat nearly jump out at the familiar voice. Her ice mirrored the action, spreading out in small spikes below her. She couldn’t- she couldn’t control. It was hard to breathe, hard to think.
“Maren, you- you can’t be here,” she said in gasping breaths. Her ice whirled inside her. No, she couldn’t risk it. Maren would get hurt if she stayed, her storm growing more and more powerful.
Honeymaren shook her head, carefully entering the hut. “I’m not leaving you like this. Not now or ever. We made that promise remember?” Honeymaren touched her arm, gently playing with the band on Elsa’s wrist: the symbol of their betrothal.
Elsa tried to settle her breathing, let Honeymaren help. “I don’t wanna hurt you.”
Honeymaren shook her head, giving a small squeeze. “You’re not going to hurt me. We’re going to take care of you, get you through this no matter what it takes.” A twinge of sadness crossed her face. “Even if that means wearing your gloves.”
Elsa cried, tears freezing as her magic seeped out. Soon, Honeymaren’s arms were wrapped around her, warm and safe. “It was an accident,” she sobbed, clinging to Honeymaren for dear life. “It was an accident and she could have died and Anna did die from it once and I- I can’t let that happen again. I can’t be a monster.”
“Snowflake,” Honeymaren said simply, her voice thick with her own tears. “You aren’t a monster. Not to me. Not to Anna. Not to your people’s. Please believe me when I say that.”
Elsa gulped, tears still falling. “I don’t want to hurt anyone, but I couldn’t see her and it’s my fau-”
Honeymaren stroked her hair in an attempt to soothe her. “No one thinks it’s your fault. I promise you, this was not your fault.”
“My ice,” she murmured.
“Your ice, yes. But you didn’t know there was anyone there. You acted as though you were alone like you thought you were. You can’t be on guard all the time. It’s okay not to be.”
They laid there for a long while. Elsa slowly began to settle while Honeymaren played with her hair, little melodies parting from her mouth every so often. The ice in her hut slowly disappeared, magic retracting inside herself. The monster was gone, replaced by her knight in shining armor. As sleep tugged at her eyes, she only wanted one thing.
“Will you take off my gloves?”