Dressed in snow, the sloping hill at the far end of the cul-de-sac becomes a mountain to climb and conquer. For the children who waddle like red and blue marshmallows towards its base, this is their day’s greatest mission. There is no time to lose. There are no guarantees tomorrow will offer them the extra hours of freedom if the buses can drive their streets without slipping and sliding on black ice.
Charge!!! They shout, dragging their shiny armor on the ground, as they push legs fattened by layers of fabric through the snow. A dozen footprints rip holes into its deep crystalline floor, vandalizing the serene beauty which frosty winters will bring.
Up their mountain they clamber, huffing and puffing, steps slowing midway to their post on the top. But they persevere like good little troops. One, two. One, two. They trudge the rest of the way, arms tensed from pulling the round shields which bump and slide across the icy ground.
At last these puffy soldiers reach the plateau and turn to survey their kingdom. It glitters with white gold – precious gems they will compact into crystal balls, then toss and hurl through the air; pristine satin on which they’ll rest their weary backs and swing arms and legs to mimic angels; a shimmering slope to carry them home in one exhilarating swoop.
In unison they position their discs on the ground. While some drop their padded bums onto metal shields in slow, careful manners, others plop abruptly onto red plastic sheets, and with a push, they are all slipping and flying down the hill like an alien saucer invasion. To the old neighbor peering out his window, it would seem the cul-de-sac is being overrun by foreign species, if the screams, shrieks, and squeals didn’t give away their childish nature.
Within seconds the marshmallow army is down the hill. Their little bodies strewn about the ground in a scattered row. One listens for the sound of frightened tears, but there are none. Laughter echoes off the frozen trees.
That was fun!
Let’s do it again.
Charge!!! With super-human resilience, they scramble to their feet, collect their shields, and begin the arduous task of marching up their mountain once again.
– Written by Miss A