And now for the story that won the Winter 09 Chip ‘n’ Dale Online Talent Contest:
Nuts About Winter
Winter morning, the sun slowly rising over the horizon, wisps of smoke fluttering from the houses in the neighborhood bringing with them the woody aroma familiar to the season. The crisp winter air would get your attention if not properly bundled up; an unfortunate fact soon realized by two chipmunks.
A draft blew in through the front hole in their tree and swirled about their home. Chip took little notice of it, merely burrowing further into his covers, but Dale, the one with the red nose, had tossed his aside in his sleep. His teeth buck teeth chattered involuntarily as he reached in vain for the missing covers. A second draft shook him from his slumber, bringing him instantly awake.
Cold air, it usually brought snow with it this time of year. Grinning ear to ear at this prospect, he leapt from bed and raced to the nearest window which, as it so happened, was just above Chip’s bed. There was snow! His tail twitched at the thought of it, still looking out the window. He was able to peer out of it with surprising ease, mostly due to the fact that he was standing on Chip’s head. Less than amused by his rude awakening, his head burrowed into his pillow, Chip drummed his fingers impatiently on his bedding as he waited for Dale to get down.
Eventually, it dawned upon Dale that he wasn’t normally able to look out this window so easily, nor did he recall the bed beneath his feet being so fuzzy and knotted. He looked down and saw his impatient roommate acting as his improvised step ladder. He jumped down to the floor and cast an apologetic look at Chip.
“What’s the matter with you?” Chip squeaked out, grabbing Dale by the chest and quickly slapping him across the face a few times. “Didn’t you see me sleeping down there?”
Dale shook his head, no, then pointed to the window he had just been gazing out of. Curious himself, he positioned Dale at the base of the window and stood on his head to get a boost up to see out. Snow: an endless three inch blanket of it covering everything in sight. Chip instantly forgot his frustration at being roused from his slumber and the duo darted to their door. They paused at the entrance leading to the branch outside, sitting up on their hind legs in perfect synchronization. They twitched their tails and smiled before scampering out into the fluffy white powder.
They played for a while, tumbling about, until Dale lost his footing and fell. He plummeted down a good ten feet before disappearing into the snow below. Chip shot down the trunk of the tree and arrived at the location where Dale disappeared. He searched for him fervently, but didn’t see any sign of him. Dale made his presence known though. He popped up behind Chip, wearing snow like a top hat, glasses, moustache and beard. He raised his hat to Chip in greeting. Chip knocked it out of his hand and shot him a glance to quit screwing around before he bowled Dale over running toward the birdbath on the lawn. Dale was in quick pursuit and the two scampered up the stand and stood on the edge of the bath. It was a solid sheet of ice. Skating was soon the order of the day as the two chipmunks slid across the gleaming surface.
Figure eights, axels, helixes, the two of them took delight at the sport. Both of them met at on edge of the bath to rest on the snowy edge, Chip signaled to Dale to stay where he was and pushed off, sliding his way across the bath with a single push. That progress was stopped though when he was hit in the back of his head with a snowball. It knocked him flat on the ice, burying him. Once he had collected himself, he stuck his head out of the snow, and stormed back up to Dale, “What’s the big idea of hitting me while my back was turned?” he squeaked, “That really hurt.”
Dale was completely confused by the berating, he hadn’t even seen the snowball that had taken Chip out until it happened. They soon found the source though. Both chipmunks were taken off their feet by another errant snowball. Cautiously, they brushed themselves off and peered over the edge of the birdbath, using the accumulated snow for cover. Across the yard, they saw two sides at war.
“Look! It’s that big baboon with the beak!” Chip cried out, pointing to the occupant peering out of a snow fort, flinging snowballs at the trio of smaller ducks, clad in red, blue, and green clothing respectively. A couple more snowballs flew at the chipmunks as they sailed past their intended targets, again sending Chip and Dale diving for cover. The kids were tired though, and went back inside to warm up for a bit. Donald was sure to hit them each with a parting shot as they left, sending them scurrying for the door. He laughed heartily at his success.
“Hey, did you see that?” Dale asked.
“Yeah, let’s show him how it’s done,” Chip replied. The two of them scurried down from the bath and set up in the recently abandoned fort. Donald continued laughing at his parting shots when a snowball lodged itself right in his mouth, shutting him up quickly. Two more followed suit, right into each of his eyes. He squawked in anger at the attempted assault on his person. The only culprits he found were two smiling chipmunks who waved back at him before diving back into their fort for cover.
“Oh, so they want to play games eh,” Donald asked himself, packing a snowball. “Let’s see how they like a bit of this,” he lobbed a snowball into the air, expecting it to fall right on top of the unsuspecting chipmunks. They were one step ahead of him though. Seeing the snowball arcing their way, Dale had procured a fallen branch from a nearby tree. Wielding it like a baseball bat, he hit the snowball squarely back at Donald.
“Oh oh,” he muttered, ducking the line drive. “So that’s the game is it?” He flung a snowball right at Dale. The chipmunk made contact and sent the ball flying far behind Donald’s fort. The duck began running backwards, attempting to catch the fly ball as though his life depended on it. He got under it, but it slipped through his hands and splattered on his face. He looked back at the Chipmunk’s fort. Dale had tossed a small snowball in the air and was running under it wildly, allowing it to hit him in the face. Both he and Chip broke into laughter. Being duped by a pair of rodents was back enough, but being mocked by them was worse. Donald’s face turned red with anger, quickly melting the snow. He dove back into his fort and began flinging snowball after snowball at the other fort. The chipmunks returned suit. Snowballs were exploding on impact left and right, reminiscent of a World War I artillery battle. Chip began to tire of the constant effort, and the seeming stalemate. While Dale continued to dutifully fire at Donald, Chip ran off and returned with a snow shovel, filled the blade with snow, and balanced the handle on a nearby scrap of firewood, with the handle in the air.
With Dale keeping Donald suppressed, Chip quickly scaled the chimney to the top of the roof, and kicked a small bit of snow from the peak. It rolled down the side, forming a larger ball as it went. Finally the heap of snow fell from the roof and landed on the shovel’s handle, catapulting several pounds of snow at the hapless duck. Pulling his head out of the mound of snow, Donald was not fit to be tied. He raced into his garage and returned with a snow blower, quickly cutting a path across the lawn toward Chip and Dale’s fort. They quickly abandoned it and fled for their lives with the blades of the snow blower churning rapidly at their heels. The blower left a remarkably green lawn in its wake as it went and soon the yard was scribbled with its freshly cleared path.
Thinking quickly, the chipmunks scampered back up the same birdbath they had left to begin the fight. Donald, in his rage, didn’t notice this sudden obstacle and plowed into it at full force. The blower destroyed the base, and the force of the collision sent the basin and its icy cargo, along with Chip and Dale, flying into the air. The basin came to rest on Donald’s head. It cracked down the center from the impact and slid off to either side, leaving the frozen contents resting in its place. The little water that had remained underneath the ice had since soaked him and his clothes. He shivered and patted himself down to remain warm. Looking around he saw no sign of Chip or Dale and, confident in his victory, he walked up the steps to his front door.
It was locked. He looked in the window just off to the side, where he saw his nephews sitting by a roaring fire, drinking cups of hot chocolate and nursing the wounds to their spirits from their uncle’s parting shots. They waved back at him from their places by the hearth. Enraged, Donald began beating on the door, and turning the knob for all it was worth. All it succeeded in doing was dislodging the snow from the roof. It cascaded down in an icy waterfall, cooling the duck’s mood, along with the rest of him. He would get back in, but not until he had properly cooled down.
Chip and Dale, meanwhile found themselves back on their branch. The collision had catapulted them back where they started. They watched the scene below unfold, the temper tantrum, and the resulting blast of snow. It looked like they had won the fight after all. They rolled on their backs, holding their sides with laughter.