No one quite knows when he appeared, and most will never lay eyes on him, but all refer to him as the Winter Jackal. Why? Because once he's had his fun with victims, he leaves their corpses behind to be buried under a blanket of freshly fallen snow. He calls upon the snow and ice to aid him in his dark endeavors. Children are his favorite prey, for they are the only ones who can see him. He leads them astray from home and work, promising them a game. Hopscotch is his favorite, when played on frozen lakes or ponds. He shows children how to play and invites them to join in, waiting for the perfect moment to raise his gnarled, blackened shepard's crook and let its tip shatter the icy surface beneath the little ones' feet. Other times the Jackal will gather a child up in his arms and take to the sky with the help of northern winter winds, showing the youngster the joys of flight, before simply letting go. Some have said that the spirit (and they swear the Jackal must be one, for what else can control winter itself?) grants his victims one mercy. No matter what he has in store for those who fall into his traps, he makes sure to get as many laughs and smiles as possible from them before bringing about their end. Indeed, many a broken child has been found in the snow days after going missing, the ghost of a grin wreathing his or her small face. The rare survivor of his games will tell of a tall boy with dark hair and tattered clothes who wanders the woods in search of a playmate, a crooked staff held loosely in frostbitten hands and shoes absent from frostbitten feet. Rarer still are those who have seen him smile wide enough to reveal his jagged, snow-white teeth. And all will swear that his voice sounds far too kind and happy to be bad when he introduces himself, saying, "Hi! My name's Jack. You wanna have a little fun?"
So, having drawn a Nightmare!Tooth/Fang, I thought I'd try my hand at making a Nightmare!Jack (wearing an outfit mostly influenced by his human/colonial garb). Like Fang, Jackal exists in an AU where his powers are the same as our Jack's, but are corrupted. Jackal still brings fun, but only because he can feed off both happiness AND fear, which is why he ensures his victims experience both before their end.
(I almost promised myself I wasn't ever going to do a Nightmare!Jack when I first started making RotG fanart and now look where I am
Asdfghjkl trying to think up a title for this picture was way more difficult than it should have been. ALSO, I cannot tell you how close this came to being called "Jack the Knife" or "Jackknife"
I blame Ella Fitzgerald, as I was listening to her rendition of "Mack the Knife" while drawing this.)