Summary: This is, in all seriousness, a direct novel adaptation of the game Kingdom Hearts. "The Destiny Islands are a beautiful paradise where children's laughter abounds. Day after day, Sora, Riku, and Kairi talk and dream of new places, new worlds beyond their islands... Little do they know a great destiny awaits them..."
Disclaimer: I do not own Kingdom Hearts at all. This entire fan fic is really just the game in novel format, so credit for the existence of all of this goes to all the hard workers at Disney andSquare-Enix (most especially Tetsuya Nomura). I must also thank the creators of the KH manga (from which I borrowed some dialogue).
Author's Note: As I said earlier, this is a novel adaptation. There are few people who are as crazy and obssessed as I clearly am. For those of you who have played the game, next to none of what happens will surprise you (because hey, you've already done it), but for those of you who haven't (if you actually stumbled across this), then I hope you enjoy it all the same.And note - there will be a lot of little insider jokes. Players of the involved Final Fantasy games and/or watchers of the involved Disney films may get a bit giddy at those moments. Without further ado, I give you...Kingdom Hearts.
"I've been having... these weird thoughts lately... Like... is any of this... for real? Or not?"
He had this strange sensation of falling into an abyss. It was cold. It was dark. It felt kind of like... like he was falling into the depths of the ocean. He leaned back, letting go, allowing himself to continue to drift away. He was falling faster and faster now. The sensation was incredible. The air that rushed over his skin was ice cold and somehow smooth. It felt something like water, but at the same time like cold air. And the freedom that went with that feeling was amazing. The boy found himself loving the feeling he was experiencing, when suddenly, it stopped. Just like that, it stopped.
The boy's blue eyes snapped open, and there was suddenly a flash of brilliant light. There before him was an expanse of ocean. His sneakers were digging into the beach sand as the waves withdrew from the shore just inches in front of his toes. He was on his island... His home. But hadn't he just been falling deeper into what seemed like the ocean? The boy had to shield his eyes from the bright midday sunlight, though it didn't take long for his eyes to adjust to the sudden change of setting.
There was somebody standing in the water. The boy squinted at the figure. Shoulder length silver hair, somewhat pale skin. He was strong; the muscles on his arms proved it. The boy recognized him. Wasn't that... Riku? The boy grinned mischievously. It was the perfect opportunity to play a trick on him. He took a step forward, ready to charge at his friend. But when he took his step into the water, there was no water beneath his sneaker. He hadn't heard the splash of water underneath his foot, nor had he felt it. The boy checked to see if he was simply imagining things. No... It seemed like the water was receding away... From him!
Just then, his eyes caught on something. It was... a tidal wave! Going straight for Riku! Riku could see it clear as day; it was barely twenty yards in front of him, huge, and coming fast. Yet, he paid no mind to it. And then, as if someone had called his name, Riku turned around to face the boy standing on the beach and stared at him with knowing green eyes. He looked as though he was smiling as he extended his right hand to his friend.
The boy charged into the water, one hand extended to grab his companion to save him from the tidal wave, which was now just a few feet behind him. The tip of the wave began to curl into itself as it hit the shore. He was knocked back by the powerful wave, and found himself pushed under the waters, despite how shallow it had been earlier. It had swallowed both the boy and Riku, but Riku looked as though the water hadn't touched him. He was still standing, in exactly the same position as before the wave had hit. He opened his hand even more, extending it to his friend. Didn't he want Riku's help?
He struggled against the water current, still trying desperately to grab Riku's open hand, when the current suddenly grew stronger and he was thrown backwards, flipping and spinning. He attempted to yell out, but only ended up with a mouth full of salt water. His eyes were forced shut and his lungs began to burn with the need for air. When he managed to open his eyes, the midday sun had been replaced by the orange sunset. He thrust his head up out of the water, gasping for air, shaking the water from his spiky hair. After a brief moment, the boy came to his senses and tried to gain his bearings. He was still at the island.
"Sora! Sora!! Over here, Sora!"
Sora turned in the direction of the voice that was calling him. There on the beach was a girl with red hair and deep sea-colored eyes, waving and calling his name with a beautiful wide smile across her face. She was completely bathed in the orange tint of the setting sun. She wouldn't stop screaming his name. Sora grinned and waved back at her just as happily.
He hurried toward her, pulling himself through the orange gleaming waves to reach her. Kairi only continued to giggle and smile. As he reached the shoreline, Sora looked up at her, somewhat breathless, yet managing to give her his best grin. Kairi couldn't help but laugh at the goofy smile on his face, throwing her head back slightly. Kairi's smile suddenly faded as she blinked in confusion, her attention shifting skyward. There was something in the sky. And no, she wasn't being a ditz upon seeing her first cloud. There was something in the sky. The expression on her face caught Sora by surprise and he looked up into the sky to see what Kairi was looking at.
Early shooting stars glimmered against the fiery sky, making shadows and highlights on something that was falling. Kairi gasped at the sight, as Sora blinked in disbelief. What in the world was falling? Sora squinted to make out the features of the object. Was it... Yes, it was a person! Sora looked even harder at it. It was... It was him.
Sora's blue eyes widened in alarm at the sudden realization, and he suddenly had the sensation of falling, as though the ground beneath his feet had simply given way. Kairi turned to look at him, gasping. He... He was falling! But how could that be? He had been standing on the beach, next to Kairi, and she wasn't falling. Sora looked up, or rather, down, trying to see where he would land, but there was no ground in sight. He then turned to Kairi, extending a hand, pleading for her help. But she could do nothing more than reach for him. It was as though she was standing on some invisible platform that had her nailed down. Sora opened his mouth and began to shout her name, but nothing escaped from his throat. And suddenly, to Sora's shock, the image of Kairi vanished, broken by a ripple as though she had been nothing more than a reflection on the surface of the water.
He leaned back. He knew at this point that it was no use to cry for help. Nothing could reach him out here, falling into the sunset. And suddenly, in a flash of light, Sora found himself surrounded by a great blue, as though he was right back where he'd started, falling into what seemed like the ocean. He spun and twirled through the water-like atmosphere, falling headfirst until his legs grew heavy, and as Sora opened his eyes (with some effort) he found himself flipping right-side up. His feet touched ground.
Sora looked around. Nothing but darkness, and not a soul in sight. Not Riku. Not Kairi. Sora took a brave step forward, and as he did so, a blinding light came up from below him. He had to shield his eyes as the darkness he was standing on broke away and flew off. Sora looked at the pieces of blackness that were flying away, and realized that those creatures were not dark fragments. They were birds. They were doves, to be more exact. Sora gaped at them, their white feathers drifting downward all around him. Until finally, all of them had flown away, deeper into the blackness that surrounded him.
He turned his head slightly to the right, so he was looking over his shoulder, then looked straight ahead of him once again. He was truly all by himself. He was on a small circular platform that seemed to be floating in the darkness. There was a picture of a girl with short black hair in a yellow and blue dress holding an apple spread across it, and all around her were the faces of seven little men, each of which seemed to express a different emotion or trait.
But Sora wasn't interested in the giant picture. He wanted to know where he was - and he wanted to know right there and then. He ran one hand through his spiky light brown hair. What to do...? Suddenly, Sora heard a voice - it seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere all at once... Perhaps it came from within him. Wherever it had come from, it had caused Sora to look back over his right shoulder. He tried to follow the voice, slowly moving his head from the right side to the left in an attempt to pinpoint the voice's source...
So much to do... So little time... Take your time...
Sora was at a loss. Take his time? But there was only "so little time", wasn't there? He found himself confused and almost frightened by this series of events. What in the world was happening?!
But don't be afraid. The door is still shut.
The door? What door?
Now, step forward. Can you do it?
For a moment, he wasn't sure if he could. His feet suddenly felt extremely heavy, as if he had grown roots and was suddenly stuck to the spot. Sora looked around for a while, wondering if he ought to obey the strange voice. Then, swallowing hard, Sora lifted his great yellow sneaker up off the ground and took a step forward. Then another. And another. The chain that dangled at his side jingled as he moved, and his necklace, with the silver crown, rocked back and forth with his movement. He managed to cross over to the center of the platform and then stood still, as though awaiting further instructions from the strange voice.
Power sleeps within you.
Suddenly, a beam of light appeared to his right. Sora turned his head to look at it, and saw that a stone tablet bearing a red shield had risen up from the part of the floor that the light had touched.
If you give it form...
Sora spun around in time to see another beam of light fall upon the surface of the platform to his left, and saw that another stone tablet had appeared, this time bearing a green wand with a blue symbol on its top. Three circles; one big and two smaller ones attached to it. It reminded Sora of pictures he had seen of water molecules in those textbooks. He then noted that the shield bore the same symbol.
... It will give you strength.
Yet another beam of light had appeared and summoned yet another stone tablet from the depths of the flooring. Sora turned his head. This one had appeared right in front of him. This stone tablet held a broad sword with a gold and blue hilt. All three objects spun in place just above the stones. Sora looked at each item in turn, baffled, when the voice came once more.
After a moment's hesitation and thought, Sora stepped toward the platform that held the sword. He pulled himself up onto the platform and took the sword into his gloved hands. Upon further inspection, Sora saw a small red circle on the hilt, and inside it was the symbol of the three circles that he'd seen on the other two items. He stared at the sword in awe, his blue eyes wide in wonder. It felt good in his hands. Like he was born to wield it.
The power of the warrior. Invincible courage. A sword of terrible destruction... Is this the power you seek?
Sora looked up into the blackness, still hoping that the owner of the voice would reveal himself. After a moment of empty silence and darkness, he looked back at the sword in his hands and nodded "yes" in reply. The sword instantly vanished from his hand, breaking up into light as though it had been made of fireflies. He was alarmed to feel strength flow into him; his body was absorbing the light of the sword.
Your path is set. Now... what will you give up in exchange?
He slowly turned around to look at the remaining two items; the shield and the wand. "Give up"...? He had to give one of those up in exchange for his newfound power? Sora jumped down from the platform that had once held the sword and looked at each of the items. Whatto give up? He started for the shield, but then stopped when he reached the center of the platform. No. Who wanted to be strong and weak all at the same time? His eyes drifted from the shield to the wand. He swallowed hard and walked toward it. He pulled himself onto the platform and, looking sadly at the item before him, gently took the wand into his hands.
The power of the mystic. Inner strength. A staff of wonder and ruin. You give up this power?
The wand seemed to be nothing short of amazing in itself. It had a very simple design, which would probably make it not only useful for magic, but for bashing things with as well. His fingers fiddled with the blue spheres at the top as he tore his eyes away from the wand and looked back into the darkness. Once again, Sora nodded. And, similarly to the sword, the wand broke into light, and the boy watched silently as the lights winked out one by one - he was not absorbing them this time around.
You have chosen the power of the warrior. You've given up the power of the mystic. Is this the form you choose?
He had to wonder why the strange voice kept saying aloud what his choice had been. But once again, he nodded his approval. Yeah. That sounded pretty good. Sora turned on his heel, awaiting further orders from the voice. Yet as he waited for the voice to return, there was a large jolt that almost knocked him off the gray platform. He looked down at his feet and realized that the platform was sinking into the stained glass image.
There was another jolt, and Sora tumbled from the stone tablet onto the colored glass. He stood up quickly, realizing that the glass, too, was shattering. The pieces flew up around him and vanished into the darkness. Sora hoped briefly that he wouldn't fall, but when the glass broke beneath him, he was disappointed to find his hopes false.
He ended up falling with quite an impressive speed. There was no light around; he was engulfed in the darkness. Where had he been taken? Sora didn't think he'd ever find out. Was he dreaming? But this felt so real... And it was lasting longer than any dream he'd ever had before. So... what was happening to him?
His hair was fluttering about wildly into his mischievous blue eyes as he plummeted further into the dark. Sora strained to catch a glimmer of light, even though he knew somewhere deep down that it wasn't going to come for a while. The darkness seemed to last forever - which was bad news for him. Most kids his age probably didn't agree, but he thought that darkness - whether it be just the dark of night or the deeper darkness of, well, this place, for example - just seemed to hold some kind of evil.
Suddenly, like a ray of hope, Sora's eyes managed to catch onto something that glowed a brilliant blue. He gazed at it intently, as though it was his savior. He eventually realized that it was another platform, just like the one before it. It, too, had a girl printed upon it like the stained glass windows of the churches he'd seen in books. But this girl was blonde, and wore a long blue dress. And in place of the faces of the seven men, he saw pictures that seemed to tell some kind of story - it had something to do with a prince and some special kind of shoe.
After a moment, Sora's feet touched the smooth surface, and everything that he'd noticed was forgotten. A sword had appeared in Sora's hand, almost instantaneously. He examined it carefully, and discovered that it was the very sword he'd chosen on the other platform. He checked it again. Yes, it had those three circles on it.
You've gained the power to fight. Take a swing.
Sora had almost completely forgotten about the voice. It had surprised him and he jumped back a little bit, but once the surprise had faded away, he did as he was told. He took the sword in both hands and swung it around, just like the wooden one he used on the island, at home.
Use this power to protect yourself and others.
As if he couldn't have figured that out for himself. Sora almost laughed aloud. His cheery grin, however, was wiped away when a dark spot appeared on the platform. He spun around in place to face it and leaned forward, examining it, watching a strange black shadow-like creature take shape with curious blue eyes. What was it? Was it dangerous? Would it hurt him?
There will be times you have to fight.
As Sora watched, another spot emerged, and even more amazing was that the creature had risen out of its two dimensional form and stood before him. By this he was taken aback and unwittingly took a small step backward. Looked like this was one of those times. Sora clenched the sword in both hands and watched, his blue eyes wide in shock.
Keep your light burning strong.
Suddenly, the thing jumped at him in an attempt to attack. Sora leapt back, then ran around to the side so he was directly behind it, then took three good swings at the creature. The creature exploded into black mist with his third swing. The other, similar creatures flattened themselves into the floor and vanished. Sora spun around several times, checking, making sure there were no more shadow creatures.
The voice had caught him completely off guard again. Sora spun around so quickly to face the shadow that approached him that he almost slipped. He swung the sword wildly before him, and to his great luck, the blade struck the shadow in what appeared to be its chest, making the creature vanish with an explosion of darkness. Only one was left now. Sora struggled to regain his footing, turning around fiercely and glaring at the monster. He was about ready to attack it when the creature flattened itself into the floor, vanishing into a dark blotch that had formed beneath it.
Sora was taken aback by the black patch's sudden appearance. A rumbling noise. Sora's head snapped in the direction it had come from. His eyes went wide as he saw more of the dark blotches. They were spreading across the platform. Within moments, more of the large dark blotches began to appear on the blue glass-like surface. First near the circular rim, and then everywhere. Spreading, like a disease. Sora looked down near his feet. These dark patches... they were everywhere! All around him! For the first time, a sad expression appeared across Sora's face as he realized with dismay that he couldn't move. Not because his body wouldn't obey him, but because that if he did, he would simply step into the darkness... And there was no telling what would happen if he did that.
Either way it didn't matter; the dark void appeared right under his feet. Sora immediately sank into the darkness, and he gasped in shock as he did so. That's when everything seemed to move in slow motion. This stuff... This black stuff... It was like quicksand, except for the texture... It felt like ice cold air pulling at his skin, pulling him into some cold, dark void. It felt… it felt… evil.
Sora couldn't stand it. While the stuff was still up to his waist, he tried to lift himself out of it, tried to pull himself toward what was left of the glowing blue platform, tried to grab hold of something - anything - that could help him.
The darkness was up to his neck now. Sora threw up a hand, hoping that somebody would grab him and pull him back where it was safe...
Swallowing his face. Sora's blue eyes went wide in terror as the last of him vanished.
He struggled as though his life depended on escaping that darkness, his eyes shut tight and his breath held as though that would help repel the evil that the darkness held. But after a moment, Sora gasped for air, his eyes opening wide and his hands grabbing the nearest object in his reach. He was grateful to find his hands press against a smooth, glass-like surface, and to see a soft pink glow out of the corner of his eyes. Sora glanced around cautiously, and then slowly rolled onto his stomach, gladder than ever to find that he'd ended up on another platform.
This one, however, did not have a distinct image of a girl on it. This platform had three pink hearts on it, each of which showed a white silhouette of a girl, the same girl in all three hearts. Who she was and what her story was, Sora would probably never know. There was nothing else on this stained glass platform, save a beam of light coming out of the seemingly endless darkness, coming out at an angle. Sora followed the light with his eyes and saw what it was pointing at. There, jutting out of the surface of the platform, just in front of his eyes, was a large arched door.
Sora stood up and walked around the door, examining it, and then stopped right in front of it. It had a beautiful ornate pattern all over it; around the handles, on the edges, where the double doors met... It seemed to be somehow important, though Sora couldn't exactly pinpoint how so. It didn't seem to lead anywhere - just to the other side of itself. It was slightly transparent, but it was definitely standing there. He placed both hands on the door's surface and pushed.
'I can't open it...'
He folded his arms and placed one hand thoughtfully under his chin. Now what? There was nothing else there, right? Sora turned himself around, and noticed that another beam of light had appeared. He followed the light column down to where it met the platform, and saw a peculiar red chest that had appeared. Baffled, he walked toward the chest and knelt next to it. Sora opened the chest, only to find that whatever had been inside vanished. It left only a few twinkles of light behind in the chest. He sighed and closed it again, then stood and looked at the door. And when he did so, he gasped in surprise.
It was no longer transparent. Sora blinked in confusion. But... how...? He walked back to it, but before he could lay his gloved hands on the door, he heard a strange noise coming from within. He took a few steps back. If anything was coming out of there, he didn't want to get in its way. As soon as he was a good distance away, it fell silent once more. Sora looked at the door again, starting from the bottom to the top. What was happening? Then suddenly the double doors began to part, ever so slowly.
A bright white light was emitted from within, so powerful that Sora had to shield his eyes from it. The door opened itself wide, inviting Sora to enter. He looked down at the floor, and then slowly raised his eyes upward into the light, allowing his eyes to adjust to the brightness of it. He then began to step toward it. Sora leaned forward as he walked, curious now as to what was creating the light, or what the light was hiding. But the light grew stronger and stronger, until it finally swallowed him up within.
After a moment, Sora could hear the sound of water rushing up onto the shore. When the bright light dimmed, he found himself back on his island, up on one of the wooden platforms that had been built in the trees. He looked around in confusion. What was he doing back here? Had he woken up from this dream? If so, why did he find himself still standing? Was it possible to fall asleep standing up? Sora found himself hoping beyond hope that he'd finally managed to wake up.
Hold on. The door won't open just yet. First, tell me more about yourself.
Nope. Sora sighed in dismay. The presence of that voice... It meant that he was still in this... in this bizarre dream world. Sora looked up from the floor, and gasped when he saw the girl sitting on the wooden railing. She was stretching her limbs and yawning as though she had just woken up from a good nap and swinging her legs playfully back and forth. He knew her. He recognized the way her auburn hair swung outward, and her green eyes, and her yellow dress. Yes, Sora knew her. He smiled and stepped forward to greet her, when she suddenly turned to look at him. Sora was shocked at the hardness and the wisdom he saw in her young green eyes.
"What's most important to you?" she asked, her voice crystal clear.
Sora stared back at her, hoping to see her break. But it never happened. Sora sighed, surrendering. He didn't even have to think about the answer to that question. "Friendship."
"Is friendship such a big deal?" The girl's expression didn't change as she looked away.
A strange sense of panic washed over Sora. He began to back up quickly, but in doing so almost flipped over the edge of the platform and nearly fell into the water. Sora grabbed onto the edge of the platform and pulled himself back up onto it. As he tried to catch his breath, he saw a pair of sandals just inches away from his nose. Sora raised his head up to find another one of the kids he recognized from the island. The boy had spiky dirty blonde hair, wearing a short yellow and white jacket and blue shorts that were longer on one leg than the other. He had the same hardness and wisdom in his face as the girl.
"What are you so afraid of?" he asked, his voice also ringing out as clear as day.
He looked at the boy before him as though he was crazy. Sora had to wonder if these were really the kids he knew, or just images of them that the strange voice had pulled from his memory. It didn't matter. The voice had said to tell him more about himself. Sora sighed in defeat, but he had to think about this question.
"Being... Being indecisive."
"Being indecisive? Is that really so scary?" He looked away after that, just like the girl had.
It was as if Sora held nothing of interest to them, or as if they didn't want anyone to see them talking to him. And it was scaring Sora beyond belief. Sora hesitantly moved backward. He had this place memorized. He knew all the pathways, the trees, docks, and the plants... the whole island by heart. So he headed straight for the way off of that platform, but instead bumped into yet another one of the kids from the island.
This one was pretty tall, with hair that seemed loaded with gel to keep it vertical. He was fiddling around with something similar to a volleyball, spinning it around on one finger and watching its movement intently. But when Sora bumped into him, the boy's attention turned from his ball to Sora's nervous figure. As Sora was about to apologize for bumping into him, the boy spoke, his voice just as loud and clear as the two kids before him.
"What do you want outta life?" he asked, somewhat casually.
By now, Sora had decided it was best not to argue with the voice's will. The quickest way out of this dream, this nightmare, this premonition, was probably to answer all the questions. Sora straightened so he was looking straight into this kid's eyes, and tried to think without flinching. It took him a while, but he finally came up with an answer.
"To see rare sights."
"To see rare sights, huh?" It looked like the kid was going to laugh at his answer, and to Sora's extreme surprise, the boy didn't look away as though he'd lost interest. This kid's eyes lingered amusedly on Sora's face, until finally turning away as though he had to go off and laugh by himself. Sora almost grew angry, and was about to step forward to smack him one, when he found that his feet were glued to the floor.
Your adventure begins at midday.
Keep a steady pace and you'll come through fine.
Sora was confused. What was that supposed to mean? Midday? His adventure?
The day you will open the door is both far off and very near.
The door? Did it mean the door that he'd seen on the other platform? The one that he wasn't allowed to enter? Sora was suddenly blinded by a great white light, and stumbled forward as he waited for it to dim. When it did, Sora found himself somewhere else, on another one of those stained glass platforms that floated in the darkness. Sora's footfalls became steady as he crossed the platform. He examined the image on the surface.
Another girl. Long blonde hair, wearing a blue dress. She seemed to be asleep, but was surrounded by thorny vines. Sora moved across, still examining the picture, when a beam of light shot down onto the girl's face. Sora looked up to where the light seemed to be coming from, then walked over to where it seemed to be pointing. Yet as he reached it, he found himself surrounded by the little black creatures from before. The sword appeared suddenly in his hand as Sora ran toward the first one in his reach and slashed at it ferociously until it disappeared into a burst of black fire. The rest of the shadow creatures huddled together as they began what seemed to be some kind of group charge. Sora could hardly help but smirk as three wide swings of his sword defeated the entire group at once.
He straightened, confident now that all the little shadows were gone. Sora turned his attention back to the beam of light, but this time it had moved. It was no longer on the girl's face. It had moved downward, and then created a circle imprint on the floor. The outline looked like white fire, ever burning and seeming to grow stronger all the time. Sora ran toward it, dropping to his knees as he reached it. He stretched one hand into the circle, and, feeling nothing out of the ordinary, stepped inside it. He was starting to think that he was on some kind of training mission. Either that or a wild goose chase.
As he stood there, waiting for the voice to speak up again before he forgot about it, the beam of light moved again. This time it went all the way over the edge, and as soon as it did so, a series of square stained-glass platforms appeared, making a sort of stairway up to another place. Sora was pretty sure that it was another stained-glass image platform. He looked around, and seeing that there was nothing more to do on that platform, he ran toward the stairway and hurried up it, careful not to slip and fall into the pit of darkness that surrounded him on all sides.
The brilliant yellow glow of this particular platform was the first thing that Sora saw. And there, right in the middle, just like all the other platforms before it, was a girl. A brunette this time, wearing a beautiful, expensive looking yellow dress. She was quite the beauty, but just behind her was the face of a horrible beast. Yet, both of them looked quite peaceful - neither of them seemed afraid or angry. Forming a circle around them were the silhouettes of various household items; candelabrums, clocks, and even several items from a tea set.
Sora pushed the thoughts out of his mind and looked for that beam of light. He found it just above the center of the platform. He smiled slightly as he stepped toward it, curious now, as it wasn't running away. He stopped right underneath the light and gazed up at where it seemed to come from. And then the voice that he'd been waiting for made its presence known.
The closer you get to light, the greater your shadow becomes.
He was no longer sure if the voice was being cryptic or literal. Though confusion reigned over him, Sora slowly turned around to look at his shadow. Sure enough, there it was. Darker than he'd ever seen it before, and reaching all the way from the center of the circular platform to the very edge. His shadow turned slightly to face him, adjusting itself so that it looked like it was lying down on the floor, so it was looking Sora straight in the eye.
Sora's heart stopped for a second. He hadn't done that.
Then suddenly, the shadow began to pull itself up out of the floor. Sora stepped back in alarm, staring as it began to change its shape. It had at first looked just like him, but now its hair stretched out to look like black tentacles reaching out from its scalp, some of which chose to wrap themselves around the creature's head. Two eyes began to glow yellow from deep within the mask of dark tentacles. Its fingers stretched and sharpened into sharp black claws. Its feet became smaller, curving inward as you followed it to the toe. Sora stepped slowly backwards.
But don't be afraid.
A giant heart-shaped hole had appeared in his chest area. Sora could see right through the creature. The shadow had grown to immense proportions. It loomed over Sora, dark and menacing, staring down at him with glowing yellow eyes. Sora took small steps backward, one hand held slightly upward, hoping that it would see that he didn't want to fight it. But somehow, Sora felt that he was about to.
And don't forget..
Sora's eyes widened in fear as the creature completed itself. He stumbled backwards, gasping in terror, trying to escape. He ran, still staring over his shoulder at the giant shadow creature. It was just standing there, as if it were waiting. Sora continued to run, but nearly slipped over the edge. He'd forgotten. There was no way out. He was on a large circular platform floating in blackness. Where could he possibly run? He began to teeter on the edge of the platform, but thankfully managed to shift his weight back onto the platform. A look of despair appeared on his face. Sora swallowed hard and spun around to face the creature. He had no choice but to fight it. He stared up at the monster as it straightened itself to its full height.
It... was... huge.
He gripped the sword tight in his hands, then ran toward the shadow. Its gigantic frame grew as he came closer, becoming more and more frightening as he approached. But Sora had learned a long time ago how to swallow his fear. Sora ran at the nearest available limb of the creature - its right hand. Unfortunately for Sora, the hand seemed to be creating a purple energy sphere. Its first attack, evidently. Sora didn't care. Sora followed the hand at all costs, even when the creature raised it into the air and then slammed it onto the platform. The purple energy disappeared as a black patch formed underneath its palm.
The hand was resting on the ground. An opening! Sora leapt into the air, sword raised, and began to swing wildly at it. His swings didn't seem to do anything to the creature, but Sora had to keep trying. He slashed the fingers and the palm furiously, and followed that hand everywhere it went. He wouldn't let it get away from him.
Suddenly, Sora felt a sharp pain at his back. He spun around and saw some of the little creatures from before surrounding him. So that's what the giant had been doing; pulling little helpers out of the platform. Sora slashed at them too, pushing them further away from him, then returned to the Black Hand. Sora leapt at it when it was high above his head, and swung his sword at it with all his strength when it was level with him. He didn't think about the little black creatures, though they were attacking him from behind and weakening the ferocity of his attacks on the giant hand. It seemed to be luck that they moved themselves in the way of his sword and were attacked as well. And every time they disappeared, Sora felt his energy return.
Eventually, all the small shadows had vanished, but the giant had other means of attack. From the heart-shaped hole in the being's chest appeared a huge glowing sphere of purple energy. Even through his alarm, Sora didn't stop attacking the beast. Even when the energy sphere shattered into pieces and all those pieces came after him, Sora did not hesitate in his blitz. Even though every muscle in his body had told him to run, he had merely jumped into the air in order to keep his attacks rolling.
He was starting to think that this battle was getting to be hopeless. He switched his focus from hand to foot and back to the hand. Nothing seemed to be working. The giant continued slamming his fist into the floor, making it rumble to the point where Sora would almost lose his footing. The giant didn't even seem to notice that it was being attacked at all. And that's when Sora remembered. The creature's face! He'd heard something before about how the face would always be the weakest point on a fighter's body, since the muscles in the face couldn't be built no matter what kind of training was endured. Sora jumped up onto the creature's arm and began to run up toward the monster's face, clutching the sword tightly in his grip.
"Hey, ugly!" he yelled furiously as he reached the monster's head. "Your face is wide open!!"
He screeched to a halt in front of the monster's face. The head began to move slightly, acknowledging Sora's presence. He raised his sword high into the air and then swung the sword swiftly downwards, the blade slicing across the giant's face, right between the eyes. The creature roared in fury; Sora had won.
Sora slid down the monster's arm, planted his feet firmly on the stain glass platform and then spun around to face it. He moved quickly backward, away from the creature for the first time. He had won, but the giant hadn't disappeared yet. It was still standing there, still looming over him. Sora clutched the sword tighter in his hands, waiting for something to happen, when the sword suddenly vanished with a white light. He gasped in shock - he was weaponless! And the monster was still alive! Sora wanted to run, but he remembered where he was - a circular platform. Even so, he had to get away from the giant shadow monster. Even just being out of its reach would be enough.
He leapt backward again when the creature lashed out at him, swinging one mighty hand in an attempt to knock him off the platform. The shadow slammed his other hand down onto the platform as well, causing a great rumble in the ground beneath Sora's feet. The creature had fallen to its knees, and was glaring at Sora with those glowing yellow eyes.
Sora's knees suddenly gave way, and he tumbled and fell onto the ground. Sora felt all his fear return. He was powerless. He couldn't swallow the fear anymore. It felt like he was going to throw all of his terror up. He stared up at the creature, terrified, still trying to get away even though he was sitting on the ground. Sora kicked his feet, pushing at the ground to help him get away, when suddenly he felt a familiar texture on his hands and legs. He risked taking a glance at the floor and was horrified by what he saw. It was one of those dark patches from the blue platform! One had formed underneath him! His heart began to race, feeling like it was going to burst from his chest.
The monster stared down at Sora, its yellow eyes gleaming as though everything had gone according to its plan. He squirmed under the giant's gaze. Those horrible glowing yellow eyes…
-- But don't be afraid.
Sora tried to escape from the dark blotch that was below him, but this patch was different. Instead of slowly pulling him under like quicksand, it was reaching up to him with dark tentacle like things and holding him down. Along with its black tendrils was something that resembled black fire and smoke, curling around his limbs and holding Sora down just as firmly as the tendrils. The smoke and tendrils first began to wrap around Sora's legs, engulfing them in darkness. They seemed to hold him tightly; it felt like a series of cold, soft hands had taken hold of him. Sora struggled under the feeling of it. He clenched his teeth, holding back a yell of frustration and terror.
The monster was still there, still glaring at him, but doing nothing more than that. Its malicious glowing eyes burned holes into Sora. Sora's mind raced. He could do nothing more than to stare back at the monster, but… that malicious stare…
Suddenly, the creature raised itself so it was standing almost upright. As though it was planning to do something. Like delivering a final blow.
You hold the mightiest weapon of all.
The voice seemed to be trembling.
Sora had finally managed to roll onto his stomach, even though those dark tendrils had wrapped around his entire torso. He tried to crawl over and grab the edge of the platform, but it wasn't working. He could barely gain more than a few inches. He stretched his arm out, but his hand couldn't reach the edge. Then the dark tentacles and the black fire began to grab hold of that hand. Now all of Sora's limbs had been caught by that dark stuff. There was nothing more he could do.
So don't forget:...
The voice was definitely shaking.
He found himself slowly starting to sink into the dark patch as the tentacles began to engulf him. Sora turned around, checking to see if the giant shadow beast was still there. His blue eyes widened and his jaw dropped when he saw it there, still looming over him. It was leaning downward as though it was going to crush Sora with its body. Sora's eyes were wide in terror, begging for mercy. No. He didn't want to die here. Not here. Not in this bizarre place. No. Never here. Anywhere but here.
Black tendrils of fire and smoke reached up and began to wrap around Sora's face.
'Cold… and dark… so dark…'
You are the one... who will open the door.
The sound of water crashing on the beach shore had slowly filled his senses. He opened his eyes and stared up at the blue sky. The large white clouds rolled lazily across the wide blue expanse. He shielded his eyes from the sun as he stared up. It looked like it was midday, but he couldn't really tell.
'The sky's so blue today...'
He switched his attention from the sky to whatever was lying in front of him. He pushed himself up into a sitting position and propped himself up with his hands. It was the ocean. A great expanse of beautiful blue ocean lying out before him. No mainland in sight. He smiled sleepily and yawned, then laid himself back down to get some more sleep. He lay down, finding himself suddenly lying in some shade. He lazily opened his eyes and looked up. His view of the sky was obstructed by a girl.
He sat straight up, all his chains jingling at the sudden movement. Still on his knees, he turned himself around to face his friend, his exposed knees rubbing against the beach sand. Both friends began to laugh at each other.
"Gimme a break Kairi."
Kairi giggled, tucking a loose tuft of her short crimson hair behind her ear, and then stared straight into her companion's face, still grinning as though she knew that he'd done something wrong. Her ocean-colored eyes were still laughing as she spoke to him in a tone that sounded just like a mother's.
"Sora, you lazy bum. I knew that I'd find you snoozing down here."
Then she turned away, as if she were shunning him for his wrong doing, her nose lifted snobbishly in the air. She looked back at Sora out of the corner of her eye, waiting for him to laugh at her imitation.
"No! This huge, black thing swallowed me up!" Sora began to explain. The adrenaline had suddenly begun to run through his body, just like it had at the end of his dream. He tried his best to recall everything he'd seen, every detail, his blue eyes burning through the ground as he struggled to find words to explain. "I couldn't breathe, I couldn't --"
A hand dropped onto the top of his head. "Ow!" Sora raised one hand and rubbed his new bruise.
"Are you still dreaming?" Kairi laughed, dropping the false mom act. She leaned forward and stared straight into Sora's face.
"It wasn't a dream!" Sora protested. But his words caught in his throat. "Or... was it? I don't know..." Sora looked down at the sand, suddenly confused. Had it really been just a dream? But it had all felt so real… He then looked over his shoulder, toward the ocean, as though its deep depths held the answer to all his questions.
"What was that place?" he murmured, mostly to himself. "So bizarre..."
"Yeah sure." Sora looked up at Kairi in surprise and slight dismay. She didn't believe him...?
Kairi had given up making fun of Sora - for now. She walked casually toward the shoreline, and stopped just a few inches from where the water receded from the shore. Kairi looked up at the sky at first, gazing at the white clouds as they rolled by. And then she turned to stare out to the horizon, as though she also believed that there was some big secret out there that she just had to know about.
Sora turned his attention toward her. "Say, Kairi. What was your hometown like? You know, where you grew up."
He shifted his position so he was no longer kneeling in the sand (the texture was starting to hurt his knees) and turned slightly so that he was still facing Kairi. He propped himself up with his arms, his gaze never drifting far from her.
She smiled at the question. "I've told you before, I don't remember."
"Nothing at all?" Sora sounded suspicious, and almost doubtful of her answer.
"Nothing." Kairi had answered as if it didn't bother her one bit.
"You ever wanna go back?"
"Mmm... Well, I'm happy here." Kairi's smile deepened as the words came out.
"Really..." He was still doubtful. Sora finally looked away from Kairi and stared out over the horizon, just like she was.
"But you know," Kairi continued with a small giggle, "I wouldn't mind going to see it." She smiled at the thought.
"I'd like to see it too," Sora replied, fixing his gaze back on Kairi and resting one arm on his knee. He grinned at his thoughts. "Along with any other worlds out there. I wanna see 'em all!"
Kairi giggled as she turned to face her friend with a nod. "So what're we waiting for?"
"Hey, aren't you guys forgetting about me?"
Both Sora and Kairi turned around. There, standing with a log tucked under one arm, was another boy. He was taller than both Sora and Kairi. He had shoulder length silver hair, that stuck out just about everywhere (but in the most stylish manner) and green eyes that were almost neon in color. He was well built for a fifteen-year-old, and held the thick log as though it were nothing. Sora grinned. He'd known this guy since... well, as far back as he could remember. He and Riku had grown up together.
"So," Riku continued with a shake of his head, "I guess I'm the only one working on the raft."
Riku glanced at Sora with a slight smile, and tossed the log to him as he walked over to Kairi. Sora yelled in surprise as he tried to catch it... and failed miserably. Riku laughed slightly then looked right at Kairi, straight into her innocent blue-green eyes.
"And you're just as lazy as he is," Riku finished, accusing Kairi as he motioned toward Sora.
Sora made a face at Riku as he pulled the log closer to him.
Kairi giggled. She put one hand behind her head in an embarrassed gesture, and feigned a wince as Riku spoke. "So you noticed," she laughed, a sheepish grin spreading across her face. "Okay, we'll finish it together! I'll race you!"
Sora had seated himself on top of Riku's log, and looked up at Kairi as though she were the craziest person he'd ever met in his entire life. There was no way he was going to race both Riku and Kairi after he'd just woken up.
Riku had also seated himself down in the sand next to Sora. And then, as though Riku had read Sora's thoughts, he yelled out, exhausted from the work that he'd been doing all day - alone, as it turned out. He rolled his green eyes so he was looking up at Kairi, the only one still standing.
"What, are you kidding?"
Kairi paid no attention to their protests, and merely laughed at their expense. She then cupped her hands around her mouth like a megaphone. "Ready, go!"
The two boys exchanged glances, then suddenly leapt to their feet and began to run along the shoreline as fast as they could. Riku looked over at Sora, his face filled with laughter. Sora, on the other hand, looked absolutely determined to beat Riku at this race. Riku almost laughed at Sora's seriousness, and finally looked straight ahead. If Sora was going to try to win, then so was he. Kairi laughed the entire run across the beach, bringing up the rear of the so-called "race". She couldn't stop laughing at them as she made her way toward the "boat ruins" on the other side of the island. Both Riku and Sora were way ahead of her, the two of them being neck in neck.
Sora finally looked over at Riku. The two boys looked at each other as they ran for a moment, and then suddenly, both grinned at each other, as though there was some kind of joke just the two of them shared, and then continued their race. Sora's grin grew even bigger, the mysterious dream pushed out of his thoughts. Then both boys looked back at Kairi, both of them grinning, and began to call out her name and urge her to run faster.
There was only this moment. This eternal summer that had been granted to the three of them in the form of an island paradise. There was only now. There was no door. No darkness. No mysterious voice. This place...
These were the Destiny Islands.
The passage to Kingdom Hearts.
Author's Note: I wrote and described everything under the assumption that nobody knows who these characters are, so please do your best to forgive any poor descriptions. I have this policy that, when I write, when a character is introduced, the characters' names are not to be revealed until somebody in the story says it. So for example, even if you know that the small mouse with the perfectly round ears wearing the red shorts and big yellow shoes is Mickey Mouse, I won't say his name until somebody says, "Mickey!" or if he introduces himself.
Um... yeah. Just so that nobody gets annoyed when I ramble about what a character looks like and you're just like, "I KNOW! IT'S DONALD DUCK!" :P
So how's that for a prologue? Originally, this is all I had written. But I was prompted by a friend to continue, and I subsequently began to write... the whole thing. Like I said... there are few as crazy as I am. Still a work in progress. :) Please review and comment! And look forward to the next installments! Please?