Hello, readers! I'm Toa Aerrow, and this time I'm presenting a story idea from someone else!

Okay, so The Terribles wasn't totally my idea either, but this time I've actually collaborated (shocking, I know) with Hanaekaptr on DeviantArt to produce a story idea she invented.

It started with me searching for pictures on DVA of Hiro Hamada from Disney's Big Hero 6, and Vanellope Von Schweetz from Disney's Wreck-it Ralph. I figured they'd make a cute couple. Then I found Hanaekaptr's images, and she took it even further.

She created a dancer AU for Van, and drew images of the two of them as children and young adults. Then I started a comment conversation on her image 'Sugar Rush', which led to us exchanging notes and planning an entire story of turning a shady dancer into a teleporting superheroine with a connection to Hiro and the Big Hero 6. That is this.

And that is what will begin here, in this prologue.

Now, if you head over to Hanaekaptr's DVA page, you'll find she has uploaded a cover for the story, a larger version of the one in the upper left corner of the screen. You'll also find a preview image for a scene in this chapter. Previews will be uploaded by her roughly a week before a chapter is uploaded, so stay tuned to Hanaekaptr to get a warning for a chapter update!

Now get ready! It's gonna be epic! It's gonna be amazing! It's gonna be…


Prologue: When Can I See You Again?

Tadashi Hamada took a deep breath, breathing in the fresh park air.

The ten-year-old boy allowed himself to smile for the first time in weeks. He was surprised it had really been that long since the crash, since his mom and dad…

He and his toddler of a brother, Hiro, now lived with their aunt Cassandra, in the shining and high-tech city of San Fransokyo.

The smile got wiped from his face as something big and round hit him in the back of the head, sending him sprawling to the ground. His face hit the grass, and he spluttered a bit as he pushed himself up. He glared back in the direction the ball had come from only to see his little brother and their aunt running towards him.

"Sorry, 'Dashi!" the messy-haired little boy in an orange shirt apologised, laughing as he stopped a few feet away.

"Tadashi, are you alright?" Cass asked him as she reached Hiro.

Tadashi frowned and glared at his little brother as he stood up, smoothing out his yellow shirt as he did so.

"What where you're throwing that thing, knucklehead!" he growled.

Hiro frowned back at him.

"I told you to catch!" he rebutted.

"I was enjoying the air!"

"But we were playing catch!"

"That's enough, you two!" Aunt Cass scolded them. "Hiro, apologise to Tadashi for hitting him. Tadashi, apologise for yelling."

Hiro looked down, ashamed, and shyly looked up to his big brother.

"Sorry, nii-chan." The little boy said.

Tadashi tried his hardest to stay mad, but the frowny, sorry look Hiro was giving him made him cave in. He sighed.

"It's okay, otouto." He replied. "And… I'm sorry for yelling."

Hiro looked up at Tadashi again, and immediately brightened.

"Now come on!" the younger boy ran forward and grabbed his brother's arm and pulled him back towards the middle of the park. "Let's go play!"

Hiro Hamada laughed with joy, and Tadashi couldn't help but join in. Cass sighed and picked up the ball, and walked after them into the park.

Hiro dragged his big brother along until they reached the centre of the park, where he stopped and turned to him.

"So, otouto," Tadashi spoke, leaning down to his pint-sized brother. "What'd'ya wanna play?"

Hiro thought for a moment, before an excited smile came over him.

"Hide-And-Seek!" he shouted.

"Okay, Hide-And-Seek it is!" Tadashi agreed.


"You run off and hide," Tadashi told him. ", and I'll count to a hundred!"

"You can count that high!?" Hiro asked.

"I thought your highest was a thousand?" Tadashi replied.

"Yeah, but I'm the smart one!"

"Ju-hust go!" Tadashi shouted, laughing.

Hiro ran off into the trees at one side of the park, and Tadashi held an arm over his eyes and began counting.

Hiro ran around tree after tree, dodging roots and weeds and low-hanging branches.

[0:16] Owl City – When Can I See You Again

~ Switch on the sky, and the stars glow for you.

~ Go see the world, 'cause it's all so brand new.

~ Don't close your eyes, 'cause your future's ready to shine.

~ It's just a matter of time before we learn how to FLY!

Stepping on top of a small log, he leaped, flying out through the air, laughing all the way. He imagined he was a bird, or a plane, flying through the skies above the city.

And, very briefly, he imagined he was a superhero. Flying on the back of his own red flight robot and wearing a purple suit, fleeing awesome the whole way.

~ Welcome to the rhythm of the NIGHT!

He landed on the leafy ground ahead of him, and stumbled slightly, but kept running and kept laughing as he ran across the ground.

~ There's something in the air you can't DENY!

Finding the perfect hiding spot, the back of a large tree, he dodged behind it and pressed his back to it. He giggled as he looked back around the trunk, watching out for his big brother.

Then he heard something. A voice. A high-pitched voice was talking to someone. He turned his head back to the area in front of him, frowning, and saw something behind the bushes.

A little, rainbow-coloured toy rocket was held aloft above and behind the bushes. A little arm held it, running around the back of the bush, coming back towards the edge. The voice of a little girl emanated from below the toy.

"Come on, Baymax!" the little girl was saying. "We've got to get to the launch site!"

The girl then made zooming noises, and ran around the side of the bush and into the line of sight of Hiro.

She had a pudgy, round face, complete with a button nose, and large, hazel-brown eyes. Her head was topped with messy black hair that was covered in bits of sweets and was tied back in a ponytail with a red bow. She wore a little aqua-green hoodie, a double-pleated short brown skirt, and mismatched stripped leggings that covered her otherwise bare feet. In one hand she held the rainbow rocket high, while the other she dangled beside her, holding a white push doll with stumpy legs and arms, and a simplistic face.

"We're almost there, Bay-"

The girl looked forwards and noticed Hiro, still pressing his back against the tree trunk. She stopped running, her mouth falling open with wonder and a little surprise. Then she smiled again.

"Hello!" she greeted, waving the rocket in the air.

She skipped over to him and held out her right hand, still holding the plush toy.

"I'm Vanellope!" she said loudly, and excitedly for meeting someone new.

Hiro stared at the girl, sceptically. Naturally, he was unused to random strangers coming up to him and greeting him. Especially ones as young as this girl obviously was.

Besides, what kind of a name was 'Vanellope'?


"What's YOUR name?" she asked, holding her hand out a bit further.

"Um," he shook his head slightly. "H-Hiro." He answered, but still didn't grab her hand.

"Hiro?" she giggled. "What kind of a name is that?"

"The normal kind." He answered, a bit insulted. 'Vanellope' couldn't talk, having such a ridiculous name herself.

"Come on! Ya gonna shake?"

To emphasise, she wiggled the fingers that weren't holding the plush toy.

Hiro remained still a moment, then, grudgingly, released his hand from grasping the tree trunk and grabbed her hand and shook. Vanellope giggled, then, much to his surprise, began shaking his hand wildly back and forth, sending him nearly flying off if he hadn't been holding the trunk with his other hand.

He ripped his hand from hers and immediately returned it to the tree, while Vanellope held hers together in front of her with both toys still grasped.

"Hey, ya wanna play?" she asked excitedly.

Hiro said nothing, just inched back into the tree.

"I-I'm not supposed to talk to strangers." he muttered.

"Oh, come on, Toothgap!" she beckoned, still smiling. "It'll be fun!"

Hiro felt his tongue to the mentioned gap in his teeth, and frowned again at the nickname. He was intent on saying 'no' again to this weird girl, only he was stopped when he heard his older brother calling him.

"Hiro!" Tadashi called. "Otouto! Come out, come out, wherever you are!"

The game of Hide-And-Seek was on, and Tadashi walked through the trees, noticing his every move shadowed by his aunt.

He looked around, searching for signs of his brother. Looking ahead, he saw an indent in the ground ahead of a log, probably where someone had leapt. It looked fresh, so someone had done it recently. Following its path, he saw it leading behind the trunk of a large tree.

He smiled. The perfect hiding place. Therefore the worst if you're playing with a genius.

"I can hear you!" he teased, stepping towards the tree. "I know you're there!"

He stepped closer, walking to the side of the trunk.

"I can…"

He jumped out from behind the trunk.


What he saw surprised him.

Number one, his brother was backed up against the tree trunk, clinging to it as if he would fall up and out into space if he let go.

And secondly, he saw the three-year-old girl standing in front of him, smiling like it was her birthday, clutching her two toys in her hands.

"Hello!" she greeted enthusiastically.

Tadashi couldn't help but notice as his brother winced slightly.

"Hey!" Tadashi greeted back.

He stepped towards them, and the little girl stepped backwards a bit to give them some room.

"What's your name?" Tadashi asked.

"I'm Vanellope!" she yelled. Hiro winced again.

"Tadashi." he replied, holding out a hand.

The girl held out the hand holding the plush toy and shook Tadashi's. The older boy noticed his brother shaking his head from his position, still clinging to the tree trunk.

"Are you his brother?" the girl asked.


"Well, can you convince him to play with me?" Vanellope asked. "He's being no fun!"

Tadashi chuckled.

"Well, I can't speak for him," he said. ", But I suppose I'd like to play."

"YAY!" the girl yelled, dancing on the spot.

Hiro managed to inch forward from the tree and grab onto Tadashi's leg, still shaking his head. Vanellope, meanwhile, composed herself and looked up at the taller Hamada.

"Come on! The sugar monsters are invading!" she said. She held up the plush toy. "I'm taking Baymax to their home to stop them!"

"Then let's go!" Tadashi played along.

The girl turned around and held the rocket in the air, running towards the edge of the trees to the rest of the park.

"To the peppermint moon!" she shouted, leading the way. [1]

Tadashi chuckled and began to follow, only to find he couldn't move his leg. He looked down to see his little brother tightening his arms around his leg, frowning after the girl.

"Don't go near her, 'Dashi." He pleaded. "She's weird."

Tadashi chuckled at his brother's clear dislike of the girl. He kneeled down in front of him.

"Oh, come on, otouto! It'll be fun!" he told him.

"We WERE having fun!" Hiro argued. "We were playing Hide-And-Seek, not imaginary land with stranger weird girl!"

"Well," Tadashi replied, ", you can go back to Aunt Cass, while I'LL go play with 'Stranger Weird Girl'."

And with that, Tadashi took advantage of the fact that Hiro had let go of his leg, and ran after Vanellope.

"'Dashi, wait!" Hiro wailed, then ran right after him.

"Hold on, you two!" Cass, who'd been watching, followed.

Tadashi quickly caught up with Vanellope, who'd slowed down when he hadn't followed. Upon seeing him running after her, Vanellope smiled and continued running herself, keeping herself within playing range of Tadashi.

"We've reached space, and are on course for the peppermint moon!" she shouted. "What's that, Baymax? The sugar monsters are following us!? Oh no!"

She turned and smiled at Tadashi, which he took to mean HE was the sugar monster.

"Raaaar!" he play-growled, clawing his hands and holding them up above his head.

"Hold tight Baymax!" Vanellope instructed her toy. "This is gonna be rough!"

~ Till then…

~ When can we do this again!?

~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

~ When can I see you again!?

~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

Then she ran as fast as she could through the park, followed swiftly with 'sugar monster' Tadashi, the complaining Hiro, and a bemused Aunt Cass. They left the trees and returned to the grassy park area. Vanellope slowed as they neared the climbing frame at the centre, continually chatting to Baymax and looked back towards her new friend.

~ When can we do this again!?

~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

"Almost there, Baymax!" she said. "We just need to land, and then-"

"Vivian!" Someone suddenly called from the car park. "Time to go!"

For the first time since they'd met, both Tadashi and Hiro, who'd just caught up with the girl, saw her loose her smile. She slumped and moaned, turning towards the source.

Said source was a woman in her early-thirties, walking towards Vanellope, or 'Vivian' rather. She had a very similar look to Vanellope, although her raven hair hung loose down past her shoulders. She wore a simple green polo shirt, as well as faded blue jeans and white sneakers.

"Do we have to?" Vanellope asked her mother. "I just made some new friends!"

She gestured to the Hamada brothers, the smiling Tadashi, and the frowning and panting Hiro.

"New friends?"

The woman turned to see the two boys.

"Oh! Hello!" she greeted as she reached her daughter. "Who are you?"

"I'm Tadashi." The older brother replied, walking towards them, pulling along his frowning brother. "This is my brother, Hiro."

"HE's my friend." Vanellope clarified, pointing to Tadashi. Then she pointed at Hiro. "HE didn't want to play with me!"

"Aww! It's fine, Hiro." Her mother spoke to the boy. "She not bad! She just wants to play!"

Hiro glared down at the ground with a mix expression of annoyance and a little bit of shame. Coming from his brother something like that was just something to shrug off. Coming from a parent, though? That was big.

At that moment, Cass finally spotted the group, and ran over with relief.

"Oh, there you are!" she shouted to the brothers, causing all four people to turn to look at her.

Noticing the woman, Cass slowed down to a walk and calmly went over.

"Hi!" she greeted. "I'm Cass."

"Melanie." Vanellope's mother replied. "Are you their mother?"

"No, no I'm their aunt." Cass answered. "Their parents are… well…"

She stopped herself from saying the word when she saw Tadashi's grieving frown return. She cleared her throat.

"And she's yours?" she asked back.

"Yeah, she is." Melanie responded. "My Vivian, though she likes to be called 'Vanellope'."

The girl in question giggled at this, clearly about some inside joke.

"Hey, I own a café down in the mid-city!" Cass told Melanie. "You know, the Lucky Cat Café? Perhaps you and your daughter could come on down there sometime?"

Melanie smiled, and answered. "Sure! I'll be free Wednesday next week!"


"Yay!" Vanellope exclaimed, bouncing on the spot and turning to the boys. "Maybe we can play again!"

"Okay!" Tadashi said.

"Oh, boy!" Hiro groaned.

"Okay!" Cass said. "Well, I'll see you there Mrs…?"

"Von Schweetz." Melanie finished for her. "And you're…?"


"Right! Well, looking forward to it!" Melanie said. "See you there!"

And she reached to grab her daughter's hand (Baymax toy included) and began leading her back towards the car park.

"Bya 'Dashi! Bye Ms Hamada!" Vanellope said as they walked away. "Bye Toothgap!"

Hiro frowned in annoyance at the nickname one more as the three Hamada's watched the two Von Schweetzs walk off.

~ When can I see you again!?

The next Thursday, the bell ringing at Cass's café door signalled to arrival of a customer, and the waitress/shop keeper smiled when she saw the two arrivals.

"Hey!" she called.

"Hey!" Was the near-identical reply from Melanie Von Schweetz.

The other woman walked into the café, her daughter hanging off her arm clutching the plush toy. The girl wore the same clothes she did before, though now also wearing small black boots with salmon pink soles.

"Sorry I couldn't come here yesterday." Melanie apologised as she reached the counter. "Something came up at work. I had to… fill in."

"That's okay!" Cass said. "Any day's fine! So, what would you like?"



The two woman started in surprise, Melanie startled as Vanellope's hand left hers, to see the girl running over to a table by the window of the café. Sitting there were Tadashi and Hiro, the elder tapping away at a video game, the younger trying a go at a puzzle. Hiro's head bobbed up at the familiar voice, and he groaned and hit his head on the table as Vanellope reached them.

"Heya, Toothgap!" she shouted. "Heya, 'Dashi!"

"Vanellope!" Tadashi said. "What're you doing here?"

"Breakfast!" was her reply.

In a few moments, Melanie and her daughter were settled at the same table the boys were at, much to Hiro's irritation. Cass came up to them with a digital menu on a tablet.

"So, what would you two like?" their aunt repeated to the guests.

Vanellope answered first.

"ICE CREAM!" She shouted. "With LOTS of vanilla!"

Melanie giggled before answering Cass.

"Just two peanut-butter-jelly sandwiches, please." She said. "And, maybe a SMALL ice cream. Vanilla."

Cass nodded and started walking back to the counter. Tadashi, meanwhile, turned to Vanellope.

"So, THAT's why you have that nickname?" he asked her.

Vanellope turned to him, giggling again.

"Why vanilla?" Hiro asked. He couldn't help but be intrigued. "Chocolate's always the best."

"No it's not!" Vanellope shot back, though she was still smiling. "Vanilla's AWESOME!"

"No no no. Aunt Cass's chocolate is the best."

"Nope! Never!"

"Stop fighting, you two!" Melanie forced buck a giggle at the two adorable kids fighting over ice cream flavours.

Then Aunt Cass returned with Melanie's order, plus breakfasts for her nephews.

"Here you go!"

She placed them in front of their respective persons. Vanellope immediately dove into her small bowl of ice cream, despite her mother telling her to start with the sandwich.

As the morning wore on, the two Von Schweetz stayed at the café, Melanie chatting with Cass as she worked, while Vanellope played with Tadashi and the plush toy on the table.

"…and the Sugar Monsters fought back, but Baymax STOPPED them!" Vanellope squeaked as she played her game, Tadashi making noises to go along with it.

Hiro rolled his eyes in frustration as he lost his concentration on his Sudoku puzzle AGAIN. He groaned and slammed his head on the table. Vanellope and Tadashi turned to him.

"Aww! Itty bitty Toothgap is tired!" Tadashi joked.

Hiro looked up and did his best death glare at his older brother.

"Oh, come on, Toothgap, it's just a joke!" Vanellope defended Tadashi.

"Can't you do something else!?" Hiro complained. "Something that DOESN'T distract me!?"

"Come on! You wanna be annoying when you grow up!?"

"YOU'RE the annoying one!"

"No no no, I'm not gonna be annoying." Vanellope rebutted. "When I grow up, I'll build a race car out of candy and pastry! It'll run on vanilla ice cream, and will shower the WORLD in sweetness!"

Hiro almost laughed at the silliness of this, before remembering he was annoyed at her. So he decided to try and beat her at this 'game'.

"Well I'M gonna make a super big flying gummy bear!" he all but shouted. "One that grows again when it's eaten, so I can eat it every day and fly around the city!"

Now it was Vanellope's turn to burst out laughing.

"That's silly!" she exclaimed.

"Says pastry car driver!"

"But a flying gummy bear!?" Vanellope laughed again.

"A car that runs on ice cream!?" Hiro shot back.

"'Oh, I'll fly around the city on my magic GUMMY BEAR!'" Vanellope mocked.

"'I'll shower the WORLD in SWEETNESS!'" Hiro returned.

Together, the three and four-year-olds burst out laughing at each other's fantasies, joking about them both, even their own ones. Heads in the café turned, and some of them smiled at the two loudly-laughing kids.

When everything calmed down, Hiro looked at Vanellope, who was still smiling widely. She turned and looked at him, short of breath from laughing so much. Then she smiled wider. Not her usual, mocking smile. Nor the smile before, right after laughing so much. This was a friendly smile, one usually shared by two friends having fun.

Hiro smiled back.

A friendship made, Vanellope turned to Tadashi.

"What about ya', 'Dashi!?" she asked him.

"I think…"

Tadashi looked up and thought for a moment. Then he smiled.

"I want to be an inventor." He said simply, looking back at the girl. "I wanna build robots, like those cool things that run around the city."

"Hey, you could make Baymax!" Vanellope exclaimed.


Vanellope held up her plush toy, which she still held in her hand, up to the older Hamada.

"You could make a BIG balloon robot with stubby legs and feet and call him Baymax!" She suggested, gesturing to the toy. "Like him!"

Tadashi smiled at the toy, but couldn't really think of how he could build such a thing.

'What could be the use of a bot like that anyway?' He thought.

He shrugged to the girl.

"I dunno." He answered. "Maybe."

"Well if you don't make him, I will!"

"Before or after the candy car?" Hiro jokingly asked her.


If one looked for Hiro any time after that, they'd almost NEVER find him apart from Vanellope.

~ Joined at the hip, yeah your sidekick needs you!

Melanie and her daughter visited the Lucky Cat Café often, staying for breakfast, sometimes leaving Vanellope there while she went off to work. Vanellope, or 'Van' as Hiro called her, would sit and chat with the two Hamadas, when they weren't at school or kindergarten, sometimes playing with her plush toy or her rocket. Mostly the plush toy. Hiro wouldn't always join in on her games, but did so often. He did, however, eventually warm up to the affectionate name of 'Toothgap'.

~ Life is a trip down the road that leads you!

When the Hamada brothers weren't there, Van would do well to stay near Cass, the only other person there she knew. Cass was kind, gentle, and loving, and often gave her ice cream when she asked for it. She'd also introduced her to the family cat, a tiny, ginger-and-white kitten named Mochi. It was a bit of a sluggish hairball, and often quite hungry as Vanellope had noticed.

~ Look all around at the mountains you haven't climbed!

Months went by. The year clicked over, and Tadashi moved up a grade, while Hiro jumped straight up from kindergarten to first grade. The jump surprised pretty much everyone except the Hamadas and Vanellope, who'd seen well enough that Hiro was smarter than most people. Vanellope herself had also started kindergarten, and Melanie had made sure to put her in the same school as Hiro, even though they were in completely different parts of the school. [2]

~ It's just a matter of time before we learn how to FLY!

Hiro often came home with homework, mostly stuff that he'd chosen to do himself, and, seeing as her parents had to work long hours, Vanellope followed. At one point, Hiro sat himself and tied himself down in the work, only for Van to continually distract him with gummy bears. In the end he'd forgotten about the work and just ended up playing with his friend, eating a lot of gummy bears at the same time.

~ Welcome to the rhythm of the NIGHT!

Hiro's birthday came along, and, coincidentally, Van's came a week later. That gave both Cass and Melanie the idea to close the café early on a day in the week between and have a combined birthday party for the two of them. Not many people were invited, as neither Hiro nor Van had many friends, shortening the list down to the birthday kids, Tadashi, Cass, Melanie, Vanellope's dad Vincent, her uncles Ralph and Felix, who was with her Aunt Tamora, as well as Stan Lieber, a friend of her parents.

~ There's something in the air you can't DENY!

Ralph was a mountain of a man, nearly as tall as the Hulk. He had auburn hair, brown eyes and massive fists the size of dinner plates. He had a bit of a temper on him, especially towards Vincent, though he seemed to have a soft spot for Vanellope. The little three (now four) year-old looked up to the gentle giant, and indeed he was the first guest she introduced Hiro too, even before introducing him and his brother to her father.

~ It's been fun but now I've got to go!

That evening there were lots of jokes, chatter, and just noise, not to mention bowls and bowls of ice cream of both Cass' famous chocolate and Van's favourite flavour. Cass made her chicken wings, with hot sauce that made everyone's faces numb, and Melanie had insisted that she'd be the one to bring the birthday cake.

~ Life is way too short to take it slow!

It was enormous. Three, gradually shrinking layers, made of cocoa with a vanilla filling and icing, and topped with candles of the kids made by Felix. The teal-coloured sides were decorated with various confectionary, some of which were gummy bears that mysteriously disappeared partway through the evening. Vanellope joked around by putting some of sweets in her hair, prompting her father to swiftly pull them out again. Overall, it was a good evening.

~ But before I go and hit the roooooaaaooohd,

Which the uncles and friends left around 9:00, Vanellope insisted that she stay over to play with Hiro and Tadashi. They introduced her to their bedroom, which, at this time, was filled with bits and pieces of a project the older brother was working on. Hiro showed Van a toy racecar he had, which the two of them began to pepper with stickers to make it look like it was made of candy. Tadashi played along with the duo, though he wasn't having nearly as much fun.

~ I gotta know, till then,

~ When can we do this again!?

A few hours down the line, even AFTER Cass had called for them all to go to bed, Tadashi crept down the stairs to the café, leaving the playing kids alone in the room. He snuck down, making sure not to wake Cass, making it to the fridge to grab some leftover cookies.

~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

~ When can I see you again!?

As he carefully returned from his 5 minute snack-shopping, carefully stepping toward the stairs to main house, Tadashi immediately realised something was wrong. There was no noise coming from upstairs. Hiro and Vanellope weren't making a sound. That meant they were up to something, and if the last few months had taught him anything, it was that no noise from his brother and friend could only mean one thing:


~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

~ When can we do this again!?

The eleven-year-old scanned the café, looking for something that was out of place. Nothing, everything was left as Cass had left it, having cleaned up earlier. Getting doubly suspicious, he cautiously crept up the stairs to the private kitchen. He began to fret over what the two had been doing.

'Oh, the living room must be a mess!' he thought. 'Wait, forget the living room, who knows what happened in the kitchen!'

~ AH-OH-OH-oh!

~ I gotta know!

"I should not have left them alone," he told himself as he neared the top. ", not even for two minutes. What does the bedroom look like now? What will Aunt Cass say? Gosh, this is a huge mistake, a really-"

He reached the top and immediately stopped his muttering.

~ When can I see you again!?

The upstairs was just… fine. The kitchen was clear and clean, just as Cass had left it earlier. He stepped into the living room, finding that clean too. Just some bits of toys and robot parts here and there, but those were HIS fault, and other than that, nothing.

"Everything's fine?"

As he stepped up the stairs to their joint bedroom, he heard a soft, childlike sigh. He quietly opened the door and took in the sight in front of him, right on Hiro's bed.

"Well, would you look at that…" he said as quietly as he could.

~ Don't close your eyes, 'cause your future's ready to shine.

Lying on top of the bed were the two rascals, Hiro's head on a pillow, with Vanellope sprawled over him. One of their hands each was lying over the side, to where her Baymax toy and his race car were lying on the floor, dropped.

To Tadashi, the sight was absolutely adorable. Only Cass would find it cuter.

'Where's the camera?' he thought. 'This would be a great photo for the wedding album.' [3]

~ It's just a matter of time before we learn how to FLY!

The three friends, especially the two little kids, remained the best together, laughing and playing when they could. At lunch times the duo would run around, often with Baymax in one of their hands, having the time of their lives. Tadashi joined them after school, and Van often visited the café, and sometimes even the two visited her home.

~ Welcome to the rhythm of the NIGHT!

~ There's something in the air you can't DENY!

One day, the two families visited a park, and Hiro and Vanellope were handed a lollipop each. They ran around, playing, hand in hand, having the time of their lives. They were together, and best of friends for all time. And for that one moment, everything was perfect. [4]

~ So let me know before I wave goodbye!


And then that moment ended.

Rain fell from a dark and dreary sky. And it wasn't the only water that fell that day. Tears dripped from a four-year-old girl's eyes and she stared down at the grass of the cemetery. Hiro gripped her hand tight, unable to say a thing, but wallow in the sadness of the moment.

There'd been an accident. Apparently someone had gotten caught at an intersection. A traffic jam had followed. And in the chaos, the little blue minivan driven by Vincent Von Schweetz had crashed. Vanellope, strapped safely to the back seat, had survived. She was the only one to do so.

The funeral was a week later. Everyone was there. Van's uncles and aunt was there, as was Stan. Some of Tadashi's friends had shown up, giving their support to the girl. The Hamadas were there, and Hiro had never left her side throughout the proceedings.

As they stood in the graveyard, lifting black umbrellas over their heads, Ralph and Cass watched from not far behind the two kids. As the closest family either of them had left, they were now responsible for them. Ralph turned slightly to the woman.

"I need to take her." Was all he said.

Cass nodded, and the big man stepped forward wordlessly, and reached down to grab his niece's arm to gently pull her away from the grave and from Hiro.

The afternoon wore on, and everyone met at the reception in the café. Hiro noticed Van was missing. After some looking, he found her standing in the living room, in front of Ralph, who knelt down to talk to her. She was looking downward, downcast, and clutching the little plush toy the boy'd come to know as Baymax tightly. She nodded carefully as Ralph finished speaking, then walked over to where Hiro was watching.

She opened her mouth to speak, then choked up and sobbed.

"It's okay, Vanellope." Ralph said, standing behind her. "Take your time."

Hiro had no idea what to do. His best, and only friend, usually so happy and bouncing off the walls, was now a shivering wreck. With nothing else he could think of, he settled on wrapping his arms around her, holding her tight, patting her back until she stopped.

He let go and stood back, and, finally, she spoke.

"Uncle Ralph is taking me away." She said.

Hiro's mouth dropped in horror. Away? AWAY away?

"Why?" he asked her.

Vanellope wiped away a tear.

"He says it's not safe for me." She answered. "But I'll be okay where we're going."

"Where?" he continued. "How long?"

She did nothing but shake her head to indicate she either didn't know or couldn't tell him. The two looked down to the floorboards, immensely saddened. They said nothing, just stood in the silence, watched by Ralph, Tadashi and Cass from the sides.

Finally, after a long while, Vanellope reached out a hand and grabbed Hiro's, and into it she placed her prised plush toy.

"Take good care of him." She said, looking up at her friend.

Hiro was surprised by this gesture, and once again asked, "Why?"

"So you can remember me," She answered. ", Hiro."

Her saying his name for the first time ever was the last thing she said to him. Nothing more was said that night, and the next day Ralph and Vanellope boarded a plane to Sacroshima, far south in the state from San Fransokyo. The Hamada's saw them off, but nothing was said, the sadness from the last few days still ever-present. One year after they had met, Vanellope Von Schweetz and Hiro Hamada parted ways.

But as the plane drove away, and Hiro looked up to the window, he locked eyes with his best friend in the world, and in those eyes was a promise.

'I WILL come back. I WILL return. I WILL see you again.'

[Downbeat/Sad music]

~ It's been fun but now I've got to go.

~ Life is way too short to take it slow.

~ But before I go and hit the road,

~ I gotta know…

~ When can I see you again?

[1] As you might have noticed, this scene is based on Hanaekaptr's 'First Impression' image.

[2] By the way, Wikipedia is my only source of knowledge on the US education system. I don't even know/remember whether first years are even given homework. I just wanted to picture a scene similar to Hanaekaptr's 'Disturbance' image.

[3] This scene, as you also may have noticed, is Hanaekaptr's 'Tired Rascals'!

[4] Hanaekaptr's latest image, 'Innocent Days'. Also, I figured that Tangled reference would be perfect for this part.

Trivia: I didn't actually know how to write the younger versions of Hiro, Van and 'Dashi at first, but I figured it out in the end. For Van I took inspiration from Bonnie from Toy Story 3, the enthusiastic story role-playing. For Tadashi, the eldest of the three, who's just lost his parents, I expected him to be moody at first and just warming up to things again. I like to think Van really helped with that. And Hiro, I kinda thought a bit back to little Anna from Frozen. Plus his reaction to Van in Hanaekaptr's pic is completely see-through.

Aww! So sad! I nearly brought myself to tears writing that last part! But, it's for the story, and it's necessary. Besides, now Hiro and Vanellope have something in common: They both live with a parent's sibling given that their parents' are dead!

Okay, that was a bit dark.

Anyway, will their joint question be answered? Will they see each other again?

Next Time: Chapter 1: What You Did in the Dark