There was a real bite in the air, but Will Riker liked watching his exhalations waft through the mostly still air. He and his father had been up before the sun, hiking at least five kilometers to get to this particular spot. The night before, his father, Kyle, had told him they would have to get up that early to stake out the spot for themselves ahead of the competition. It never occurred to the fifteen-year-old that people competed for coveted spots, but it made sense.
His father had rustled him awake and shoved a mug of hot cocoa into his hand. It felt good cupped in both hands, but he couldn't savor it very long...