When brother's Miles and Jimmy awake to discover a labyrinth of snowmen stretching into the horizon, slowly, things start to melt.
It was the usual reponse from little Jimmy when he awoke to the miracle of discovering a thick blanket of snow hugging the expanse of his back garden.
“Snow!” He yelled running down the stairs. “Snow! And good snow, too!” it was thanks to some restraint from his mother that Jimmy didn’t run out in his pyjamas. But, soon enough, Jimmy had pulled on his clothes, buttoned up his jacket, strapped on his shoes and was in the back garden.
“Miles!” He called to his elder brother. “Get out here, there’s snow!”
The tired looking figure of Miles appeared at the back window looking out into the garden. “I know there’s snow, Jim.” He rubbed his eyes. “The whole street knows there’s snow thanks to you waking them all up.”
Jimmy giggled. His brother was twelve – that’s two years older than him- and slightly less enthusiastic when it came to snow.
“You’re giving me time to make a fort, Miles.” He grinned and swiftly dropped to his knees to scrape the snow together.
Before the fort resembled anything more than a mere mound, Miles had slid open the back door and trudged outside.
He stopped a few feet away.
“Oh, it’s not a fort” Jimmy scrambled to his feet. “It’s umm.. It’s a…”
And before Miles had time to challenge something along the lines of “You just wait until I build mine” Jimmy had clasped a chunk of –what was almost fort- and hurled it at his brother before watching the white boulder skim Miles’ shoulder.
“Oh,” Growled Miles. “It’s on!” He challenged as his face split into a grin.
Suddenly, the back garden had erupted with firing snowballs. Jimmy jumped behind the garden bench and started pelting ball after ball after ball. He even foiled Miles’ attempt to gather an enormous ball by sending it soaring out of his hand with a surprisingly accurate hit.
Pleased with himself, but knowing Miles was about to increase the load of fire, he thought it best to retreat. So, as fast as he could, Jimmy scuttled to the side of the house, swung open the wooden gate, and ran into the front garden.
Laughing, and clasping a dozen snowballs to his chest, Miles ran after him. It was when he saw the solitary figure of his brother standing dead-still, looking out into the street that a chill ran down his spine and he started to feel the cold.