I apologize for being a little late. I hope you don't hate this chapter. I might need a beta to proofread once I am done uploading this chapter.

Chapter 4

Roxas seemed to be taking in the scenery quite well. When exiting the world, Axel thought Roxas would freak, boy was he wrong. Roxas was like a toddler. He kept kicking up sand with his boots, trying to make a big sand pile. Axel couldn't help but chuckle a bit. However, he soon remembered the mission that Saix had handed him.

The mission for the day was to find a chest. Axel rolled his eyes at the description and flipped the small beige paper over then his brows furrowed. Roxas was still kicking up dirt, his pile a little bit bigger. Axel thought to himself, "What is Saix thinking? He can't really be serious about him using the keyblade now especially on that type of Heartless!" The wild haired man crinkled the paper and shoved it into his pocket.

Roxas stopped kicking up sand once Axel placed a hand on his shoulder. The boy looked up at him with his usual empty aqua blue orbs and his lips pouting. "Don't look at me like that! You've got a job to do," Axel said straightforwardly.

Roxas pulled away and gave Axel a different expression this time. The twenty something redhead felt frustrated. This boy had been a nuisance ever since he arrived. Axel wanted to shake this kid because if he didn't get this job done then Saix will do him in. The redhead held his forehead between his fingers, strategizing how he would handle the zombie. Roxas slowly wandered away.

"Hey, let's just find that treasure chest and RTC'd!" Axel said.

Roxas looked at him grumpily and then started with making another sand pile.

"You really love doing that, don't you?" Axel asked, kneeling to Roxas's level.

Roxas nodded and Axel couldn't help but to feel embarrassed. He couldn't help but to compare how he and the others first came into this world. Were they really this infantile? Roxas glared at his sand pile and kicked it in frustration. That caught Axel off his guard.

"Why did you do that?" Axel asked.

Roxas tried to mouth something but he stopped himself. He just looked at Axel again with the same old grumpy and frustrated glare. Axel could relate, he had seen that same expression numerous times on Saix's face. Saix was always annoyed, especially on that day and afterwards. The redhead shook off that image and placed a hand onto the sandy blonde haired boy's head, "I'll show you how to do something with this stuff."

Roxas blinked but watched solemnly as Axel wrote something in the sand. Axel wrote four letters in the sand with one finger and held a small amount of it in his hand. "S-A-N-D," Axel said as he pointed to each letter and making an odd noise from his lips.

Roxas looked confused but he was slowly getting when Axel placed his hand with the sand next to the letters and sounded them out. Roxas continued to stare but Axel wasn't giving up. He then had an idea and scattered the sand to form a new word. Roxas's eyes lit up a bit at the word. Axel looked at Roxas expectantly this time, "Can you summon it?"

Axel wanted to prove to himself that this boy was really as special as his coworkers and even Xemnas himself had suggested. He watched eagerly as the boy put forth his hand, silver sparks lit up but as Axel expected nothing came. A deep exasperated sigh escaped the man's mouth. The redheaded man stalked off frustrated, Roxas followed behind.

"Why don't you quit acting like a zombie?" Axel demanded, looking back at Roxas.

Roxas backed away little, sensing the tension in Axel's voice. Axel scratched the back of his head. "At least, you tried. I am not sure how the boss is going to handle my report and you once he finds out."

Roxas tried to mouth something out but Axel just shook his head. He walked off, the boy still following close behind. Axel looked back at Roxas, trying to separate himself from the boy. However, each time was fruitless. The redheaded man decided to summon a dark corridor, maybe then this zombie would get the hint.

Axel called forth a dark corridor. Roxas practically screamed once he saw the dark purples, blues and blacks surround the older man. Axel rescinded the spirals once he heard that not so common voice shriek. The assassin just couldn't do that even if the boy's life depended on it. Abandoning Roxas just didn't look good even if Axel thought it was for the best.

Roxas rushed to Axel's side. His face lit up with relief. Axel scratched the back of his head. Roxas inched forward, pressing himself against the older and taller man. Axel pushed the boy away, knocking him over into the sand. Roxas looked up at him questioningly. Axel raised an eye brow at the boy.

"Jesus, I need to teach you some boundaries. You're so clingy!" Axel exclaimed as he knelt down, offering a hand.

Roxas uttered a "huh".

Axel sighed as he took one of Roxas's hands and put him back on his feet, "Let's just get this mission over and done with!"

Roxas looked away, not paying attention to Axel. Something caught his eye and with a mind of his own, the boy fled. The gingered haired man followed, Roxas seemed faster than usual. Axel was having a hard time keeping up this time, which was odd. Things were usually the reverse, especially since Roxas was always stumbling.

Roxas stopped like a freight train, causing Axel to trip. He fell face first into the sand. The sandy haired boy turned to him and did as Axel had done before, offered a hand. Axel took it and helped himself back up on his feet. The two turned to what had drawn Roxas's attention.

It was a chest, but not some ordinary chest. Axel took out the crumpled paper from his pocket and looked at it. He went pale as the chest in the small beige paper matched the one that Saix had given him. Axel looked at Roxas and recalled that the boy couldn't summon the keyblade. Well, he almost could. That wasn't good enough, especially not for Xemnas!

Axel would have to find some way to open the chest without the keyblade. There was still another problem though, the chest wasn't the typical steel rectangle with the circular lid and decorated with elaborate colors and designs. Axel knew the contents of the chest and perturbed about opening it. Something caught Axel by surprise and that was Roxas's glassy stare, the same sparks from before formed in his hand and something formed from those sparks. It looked like any basic skeletal key but just bigger, the blade and the teeth were the typical gray. The teeth reminded Axel a bit of a crown. There was a silver chain hanging from the faded golden guard, three silver circles formed at the edge; one in the middle while the two above it were smaller.

The keyblade didn't seem all that glamorous like Axel expected. Roxas pointed the end of the blade at the chest and a bright white light shot out of it. A large creature appeared out of the chest. Its amber yellow eyes looked at them hungrily at first but then noticed the keyblade wielded by Roxas; it hissed and lunged its disembodied four fingered claws at Roxas. Axel pushed the surprised Nobody out of the way and brought out of his chakrams; they were circular wheel-like weapons with a black cross-like handle, red on the main wheel and smaller white wheels and spikes. The chakrams shielded him and orange flames shot out, attacking the Heartless's hands. The Heartless recoiled in pain.

Roxas got back up, keyblade still in hand. He jumped in front of Axel and destroyed the returning disembodied hands. The Heartless hissed loudly as it lunged its skeletal, shark like mouth at them. Roxas or rather whatever was possessing slammed the hilt into the creature's face. The Heartless pulled back. The sandy haired boy landed on the sandy ground slamming the teeth of the blade straight into the back of the creature's face.

Axel watched in astonishment as the creature exploded, smoky dark purple darkness blanketing its large body. Something popped out of the creature, it was light pink and heart shaped. Was that the heart Xemnas was talking about? Axel couldn't tell but what Roxas just accomplished was spectacular. Roxas ran to Axel's side, wondering if the redhead was okay. Axel just laughed it off, thinking of how relieved he was that he wouldn't have to lie and that he was wrong about Roxas just being a random special Nobody.

Axel and Roxas left that world and bright blue skies behind. Returning to that dreary world that they called home, Axel placed the boy to bed. Roxas had been worn out after finishing that Heartless and the funny thing that Number VIII couldn't figure out was that the keyblade wielder was clueless of what he had just did. Axel handed the beige paper to Saix. Annoyance written all over his face. Saix said nothing and just ripped the paper too shreds. That all happened on the eighth day.

Meanwhile Max had teleported to the top of a shingled rooftop, watching the strangers below. Max's eyes narrowed at the sight of a particular pooch or rather anthropomorphic floppy eared and dark furred dog man in green. The other two Max didn't care about. He wanted to jump in but something kept him back. Max pulled something out of his pocket and narrowed his eyes at it.

"Why do I still have this damn thing?" Max asked himself.

Max put the thing back into one of his pockets, his attention back on the three. The dog boy thought back to a certain girl. Her smile lit up his thoughts as did her auburn orange hair. What Max had perceived of as happiness dissipated as soon as another memory came up, this one not so joyful. He remembered Cid and the others. Cid had his suspicions about the castle. Something was up with those scientists and the scientist king hadn't been seen recently.

The blonde haired man with goggles adorning his forehead had taken the initiative to observe the castle. The six apprentices were acting just as suspicious as normal. He had assigned Max himself and his three friends: PJ, Bobby and Roxanne to monitor the castle for the night. The four adorned themselves in brown shabby robes.

They exited the back door. PJ and Bobby going ahead of them. Max and Roxanne's hands met. The orange haired dog girl smiled and Max uttered a little, "Ay-huck!"

The two held hands, talking. Their hands swinging back and forth. Crickets chirped and numerous pools and fountains of the Fountain Court sprayed around them. Max picked a daffodil and placed it in Roxanne's hair. Roxanne blushed.

"So, how did you get to Radiant Gardens?" Max asked.

"Oh, I came here the same way a lot of people arrived," Roxanne answered with a bit sadness in her voice.

"Oh," Max looked away.

"It's not like it matters since I'll see my dad again," Roxanne smiled looking up at the starry night sky.

"Yeah, I hope you see him again," Max replied.

"What about your dad, Max?" Roxanne asked inquisitively.

Max took a deep breath and pulled his hand slightly from Roxanne. "I don't miss that guy," he replied.

"Why?" Roxanne asked.

"I don't like talking about him," Max answered abruptly.

"Okay, I understand," Roxanne said innocently.

"We best check up on the guys," Max replied.

Roxanne nodded.

Max and Roxanne were unprepared for the sight that greeted them. They had been jumped by several Heartless. Max fought them off with Excalibur, a sword given to him by Merlin who said the sword was enchanted and belonged to some wise king from another world. Max swung it back and forth, piercing into the bodies of those forsaken souls. Roxanne pulled out a large hammer and smashed Heartless needlessly.

The Heartless outmatched them; Roxanne and Max were back to back. Hordes of Heartless crept closer and closer, their angry yellow eyes pleading for release. The couple didn't give up and smashed and slashed their way through the horde. The two met up with a panicked PJ and Bobby. PJ kept spouting out nonsense about Pistol, Cid and the others.

Max wanted to ask but the horde of Heartless behind them became more numerous. Their numerous dark bodies covered the bright and vibrant cobblestone court, small shops and fountain of the marketplace. The four pulled out their weapons. PJ was the first to go, ax bludgeoning into each creatures' head. The last three pursued.

Max shook the memory off and now stood before the trio. Sora glared at him with keyblade in hand along with a prepared Donald and Goofy. Max pulled out Excalibur. Three against one wasn't a fair fight. Max though had something up his sleeve.