FG: CC2 is finally out! 11 days has seemed like forever to me...anyway, I think I should be doing a disclaimer before every chapter now…I don't own anyone except Emma, Dia, Jake, Taylor, Alissa, and Robin.
Emma: Just so you know, we visit a mall in this chapter, and it really exists!
Dia: Yeah, if you live in the Chicago area, you should really visit Lincolnwood Town Mall in, well, Lincolnwood!
Kairi: It's da bomb, yo!
Everyone else: (sweatdrop)
Sora: Don't…don't say that. Ever again.
FG: Here's Chapter 1!
… … … … … … … … …
"I can't believe it's finally summer vacation!" Jake squealed. "We can go to a water park!"
Emma laughed as she and Jake walked to the Quinn Residence from the elementary school that they now shared. "Hold on, Mom and Taylor are getting married tomorrow. They'll go on a…honeymoon."
Jake was now nine, barely old enough to know why Emma cringed. "Yuck. I wonder who'll baby-sit us?"
"Dia, I guess. She's eighteen." They turned the corner. "Oh, great. That girl."
An Asian-looking girl was talking to Dia. "The other members of the Alpha Wolf Gang and I have decided ta stop beatin' on ya under one condition."
"SIS!" Jake yelled, ignoring the tall girl and running to his sister. "Sis, what's wrong?"
"Nothing," Dia replied.
"You have a bruise on your cheek…" Jake stood on tip-toe to see Dia's face.
The other girl growled. "Go away, munchkins. Quinn an' I are settlin' a big-kid matter. Go find a sandbox."
Jake looked her in the eye. "Yeah? Well, I'm a Quinn too!"
"Jake!" Emma pulled him back. "Um…he doesn't mean it. We, uh, really have to get home…"
"I'm not done wit' Quinn. If ya want her, ya hafta fight me."
"Cut it out, Robin!" Dia pushed her back.
Emma sighed and glanced eerily at her. "You don't want to mess with me."
"Oh, really? I'm shakin' in my boots!" Robin smirked. "Whatcha gonna do, bite my ankles?"
Jake smiled. "No, sticks work better."
Robin raised an eyebrow. "What?"
"HYAH!" Emma held up a stick and aimed for Robin's head.
"Not so fast, munchkin!" A red streak sent Emma flying back before she could even touch the teenager. Robin glared at them. "Quinn, next time ya sic yer munchkin army on me, you'll get a visit from the whole Alpha Wolf Gang." She strode away.
Emma got up and dusted herself off. "I'm sorry, Dia…thanks to us, it's two strikes, the three of us are out."
"No, it's my fault…I've been annoying that biker fanatic too much."
"About what?" Jake asked.
Dia remained silent and walked in the direction of home. When they were almost there, she said, "Guys…tomorrow's the day."
Jake nodded. "Yeah, the wedding! It's so exciting! Us and Emma will be step-siblings!" Though he still referred to Dia as 'Sis', he had left his stage of referring to Emma as 'Emmie'.
"That's not it. Do you remember what else tomorrow is?"
The other two thought carefully. "June 21st…" Emma murmured. "June 21st…" Her eyes shot open. "Oh! The two years! They're up!"
"That's what I've been annoying her about," Dia explained. "The red flash was a large gun. Its bullets…they're like energy, not real bullets. Like a video game weapon. I was asking her if she played Kingdom Hearts, but she said it was for babies…then she made me her gang's target. She seems to tough. And she is. But…maybe she's the ninth member of our Kingdom Hearts team."
… … …
The next day, Emma, Dia, and Jake were dressed up nice and put by Taylor and Alissa during the wedding. "1:58," Dia whispered. "We locked Kingdom Hearts around 2:00."
"What's our decision?" Jake sighed. "I don't want to ruin Dad and Alissa's big day…but I want to see the guys again."
"I even miss that Mary-Sue, Kairi…" Emma whined. "And that's saying something."
"I say we let the Heartless in," Dia decided.
Emma nodded. "Haiiro says only the U.S. will have Heartless. In Kingdom Hearts, we weren't going everywhere in the universe…just a few places. We can take care of the U.S., right?" More nods. "Let's do it."
A couple minutes later, Taylor and Alissa were saying the vows. "It's almost time." Dia checked her watch. "So we're letting them in?"
"We're letting them in." Jake reached out for the hands of his sister and his friend.
Dia and Emma both grabbed a hand. "Emma, in the game, you were in charge of worlds and people. Keep on thinking, 'let the Heartless in'." Dia started the countdown. "Ten…nine…eight…seven…six…five…four…three…two…one…" She looked around. "Everything's….normal."
"Did it work?" Jake leaned forward to examine the churchyard. "Hey, a black claw!"
"What?" Emma squinted. "It's a Shadow!"
Shadows and Soldiers appeared, attacking the wedding guests. "Great! Seriously, this is great!" Dia unbuttoned her skirt and slipped it off. She rolled her eyes when she noticed Emma and Jake were staring blankly at her. "Don't worry, I'm wearing pants under this. Did you really think that someone like me would willingly wear a skirt? Come on, we need to go to one of our houses."
Emma turned. "Mine's closer. Let's go get the guys out of the game!"
… … …
"Pass the blitzball, Wakka!" Sora yelled. "I want to kick it!"
Wakka laughed. "Are you crazy, brudda? Last time I checked, you couldn't blitz."
"Try me!" Sora challenged.
"All right…" Wakka threw the blitzball. Sora jumped high and kicked the ball into a palm tree. It bounced off the tree and into the docks, then into Wakka's hand.
"You're really gettin' good, Sora!" Sora smiled. "If we ever get enough people for a team, you're so on mine!"
A green light shone through the doors of the shack by the water. Sora's smile got even bigger. "I'll be right back, Wakka."
He opened the door. "It's you three!"
Jake ran forward to hug Sora. "I missed you!"
Sora laughed. "Jake, you're getting pretty big!" He looked at Dia. "And you're getting even bigger than before! I can't believe it's been two years real-world time! And Emma…your haircut's pretty good."
Emma stared in disbelief. "My hair? That's all you have to say?"
"Yeah. So, we're needed in the real world, right?" Emma nodded. "I'll go get Riku and Kairi." He ran up the stairs and opened the door. "Kairi! Tell Riku to get his butt off the log! It's his little girlfriend!"
"Little? I'm your age, fourteen!"
"Guess again!" Sora looked, for some reason, proud. "My birthday was last week! I'm fifteen now!"
Dia rolled her eyes. "Yeah, that's nice." She cleared her throat. "RIIIIIIIKUUUUUU! KAIIIIIIIIIIIIRIIIIIIII! IT'S UUUUUUUUUUUUUUS!"
Kairi poked her head in. "Hey, guys! It's been two weeks…whoa! You guys got bigger!"
"WE'VE aged two years," Emma reminded her. Even though she had claimed to miss Kairi, she didn't seem to back that up.
Riku ran down, almost tripping on his feet. "Emma?" He pushed Kairi to the side to see Emma, Dia, and Jake, but mostly Emma. "Emma! You're here! And you're, what fourteen now? You've all gotten a lot taller."
Emma grinned at Sora. "Riku and Kairi noticed that I'm tall. How come you didn't?"
Sora pretended not to hear her. "You're in luck, Riku! Now that she's only a year younger than you, you can date her!"
"Shut. Up. Now," Riku instructed through clenched teeth. "The Heartless have probably wrecked the area around Emma's house already. Let's go!"
… … …
Jake picked up one of Emma's many Disney-themed pillows, one with a Bambi design. "Everything looks okay down here…"
Kairi stared at the PS2 in amazement. "Wow! All this time, we've been living in this…thing?"
Dia nodded. "I have one too. This is how we get into the game."
Nobody answered, because Sora, Kairi, and Riku were staring at Emma. "You're wearing glasses," Riku stated.
"Um, yeah. I need them in the real world." Emma walked over to the stairs. "There's a nearby city called Lincolnwood. Mom and I always stop at Lincolnwood Town Mall. If we take you three, you can get used to the real world before we go to O'Hare Airport. And-"
"Before we do that…" Dia interrupted. "We should check the damage. Hopefully, only the Chicago area got busted up." Everyone ran upstairs.
… … …
"I think Wizard Heartless have been here." Riku looked around the neighborhood. "Everything's all burnt up. They're the only types who can cast spells."
Jake shrugged. "Can't Defenders shoot fireballs?"
"I don't remember," Emma replied. "It's been two years since I've played...too many memories."
"If we take my car, we can get to Lincolnwood quicker." Dia stepped through the ashes towards her house, a few blocks away. The others followed.
Sora poked Emma's shoulder. "Are Donald and Goofy already here?"
Emma slapped her head. "I forgot about them! Kairi, I nominate you to go get them."
"I don't know how that machine works!"
"I'll go with her," Jake volunteered.
Dia turned around. "I think I can trust you two. I'll drive Emma, Sora, and Riku to the mall."
… … …
Luckily, Lincolnwood hadn't suffered from Heartless yet. Everyone got out. "Ah, the mall. I love this place." Emma walked towards the doors. "Come on. This place has everything. Suncoast, Waldenbooks, Fluky's, Electronic Boutique, KB Toys…"
"Why are you talking about it?" Riku complained. "Let's see it!"
People of all ages crowded Lincolnwood Town Mall. It was a bit hard to move around, but possible. "Where do we go first?" Dia wondered.
"We can split up. Dia, you take-"
"Sora," Dia finished. "You two lovebirds can go together."
Emma hit Dia's head lightly. "They sell knives here," she warned. "You've never seen an escalator, have you, Riku?" Riku shook his head. "They're moving stairs. On the way down, we can ride that see-through elevator." She grabbed his wrist and dragged him to the escalator.
"I just…step on?" Riku asked.
"Yup." Riku nodded and stepped on. He kept on walking up. Emma tapped him lightly. "You don't have to walk."
Riku obediently stopped. "It's moving!"
"That's what I said." Emma smiled. "I've been on these for a while. I haven't been amazed by them until, what, last week?" Riku looked oddly at her. "Walk down."
"Just do it."
He started walking down the up escalator. "I'm…not going anywhere…Emma…"
"That's the point. You get all dizzy."
"Um…I don't think it's…you know…boring."
Emma shrugged. "Random, meaningless activities are acquired tastes."
"Can I see the Kingdom Hearts case here?" Riku asked. "Would that Electronic Boutique place have it?"
"I think. It's mostly those new DS and PSP games." Riku looked confused. "Nevermind. We'll check."
Emma and Riku walked into the store, and Emma ran straight for the back. "The old games are back here. I'll get Kingdom Hearts."
"Hey!" The man at the desk stared. "I know who you are!"
Emma turned and stared. 'Uh, oh…'
He grinned. "You're that kid who shows up every year at the Wizard World convention, dressed as Riku from Kingdom Hearts!"
Riku sighed, relieved. "Um, yeah. Every year, that's me."
"Can I have an autograph?"
"Um…" Riku looked at Emma, who was mouthing, 'Not your real name!' He looked back at the man. "…sure." He took a piece of paper and a pen that the man shoved at him. An odd grin spread across his face. He wrote down a name, then ran over to Emma before the man could react. "Lemme see the cover."
"Here." Emma handed him the case.
Riku smiled. "This looks pretty cool. I'm on the cover!" He turned. "Um…run."
Riku ran out of the Electronic Boutique with Emma, the man following. "Why is he chasing us? What name did you put?"
"Well…" Riku smiled. "…I said my name was Seymour Butts."
Emma laughed. "You're scaring me." Suddenly, Riku skidded to a stop, and stared straight ahead. "What are you looking at?"
"Heartless," he hissed. A few Soldiers wobbled past. "We'll have to clear the area first. Where would Dia and Sora be?"
Emma put a finger on her chin. "Either Claire's, looking at all that spiked jewelry, or the food court."
"Hey, guys!" Dia was waving frantically from across the mall's bridge. "Over here! Jake and Kairi got Donald and Goofy!"
"Great!" Emma and Riku ran over. "Hey, guys! We have to clear out the mall, then we can show these five around."
Goofy shook his head. "We already know about this stuff."
Jake scratched his head. "You do?"
"King Mickey told us about it. He's been to a bunch of different worlds," Donald explained.
"Disney World, I guess…" Dia whispered to Emma. "Must've gotten a shock. All that merchandise with his face on it."
Sora took out the Ultima Weapon. "Less talking, more fighting!"
Emma peered over her glasses at the twenty-foot drop from the bridge. "I hope gravity changed…CANNONBALL!" She climbed onto the gold railing and jumped off.
"Emma!" Jake yelled.
"Don't worry." Emma waved from the floor. "Just like in the game, you have good footing when you fall."
Dia groaned. "You could've broke your head open, stupid!"
"We have Curaga again. Who cares?" She held out her hand. "Metal pole!" Nothing. "Um…Crystal Shurikens?"
"They're still in the game!" Kairi yelled down.
Emma shrugged. "I'll get some knives from that one store. We'll go in the same groups; Dia, take Sora. Jake, you go with Kairi. I'll go with you, Riku."
"What about us?" Donald asked, irritated.
"You two know enough about the real world to go on your own." Jake jumped off. "C'mon, Kairi!"
Kairi took a deep breath and stepped back. "Can I take those moving stairs?" Jake shook his head. "Coming…" she whined, then stood on the railing. "Twenty feet…twenty feet…" With a shiver and a shriek, she toppled off. "EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"
"Get used to it, valley girl," Dia grunted, leaning over the ledge. "You're a part of the ten fighters now."
Sora, being the weirdo he was, wondered, "Should we give ourselves a group name? Ten Fighters is weird.
"In English, yes." Dia grinned. "Nothing is weird in Japanese. I mean, there's a JPOP song about a grunge hamster becoming more mature, and being accompanied by a lobster of revenge."
"Huh?" Sora looked quizzically at her.
Dia concentrated. "That's…uh…Juu Senshi! Kairi, you're a Senshi now. You can't be afraid of heights!" she called over the railing, then jumped. Just like lemmings, the others followed. "Group up!" They ran in different directions.
… … …
"Oriental Express." Emma ran into a now-empty shop. "I can't believe I jumped off and had to come back up."
Riku sifted through merchandise. "It's okay, I got to ride an elevator! That was really cool."
"It's even better if you sit on the banister, but we don't have time to do that right now." Emma walked over to a wall. "You have the Soul Eater, right?" Riku waved his sword around. "Good. I found some fake swords. Let's go!"
… … …
"Let us through, Fuudo!" Dia tried to push her way past Robin, who was blocking the entrance to a restaurant called Ruby Tuesday. "We need steak knives!"
Robin ignored her, but spoke to Sora. "You're Sora, aren'tcha?"
Sora glanced at Dia for an answer. "Yes," he said slowly. "Why?"
"Why're the Heartless here?" Robin demanded.
"You DO play Kingdom Hearts! I let them in. With the two kids you call my Munchkin Army."
"Stupid!" Robin hit Dia. "Why'dja let 'em in?"
"Sora and the guys are our friends. If we let them in and destroy them, we can go through the other games."
Robin crossed her arms. "Ya may be more selfish than me."
"We need your help, Fuudo. I know you have a Senshi weapon."
Dia shrugged. "A Kingdom Hearts weapon. Our group name is Juu Senshi now, and I know you're the ninth Senshi. I-" Robin pushed to the ground. "WHAT WAS THAT FOR?"
"Shinku Cannon!" The red flash came again, and Robin was holding a large, shoulder-mounted gun. "Haiiro says that unless he gives ya a weapon in the real world, yer unarmed. Ya were in the way."
Practically legions of Darkball Heartless came at Robin, Dia, and Sora. "You know Haiiro?" Dia gasped.
"Yeah. He said I'm the ninth fighter, but I just wanna blow stuff up." An energy bullet came out of the Shinku Cannon. The Darkballs blew up, as well as a Defender behind them.
"You have to help!" Dia stood up. "You get to travel the U.S., and…and…just help us, Fuudo!"
Robin turned. "I only have summer school ahead 'a me this summer," she muttered. "An' I really dun wanna go there." She sighed. "Fer now. FER NOW. I guess…I'm a Senshi. If Haiiro wants me ta join…I guess I gotta. I owe 'im somethin'."
Dia smiled. "We have to show these guys the real world. Even though I said otherwise, I don't completely trust Donald and Goofy by themselves. Can you take them?"
"Hmph." Robin growled. "I dun like them. I wanna go with…someone who's not them."
"Fine, ya brat. You can switch with Jake, so you get…Kairi."
Robin's eyes went wide. "WHAT? HER? GIMME THOSE OLD MEN BACK!"
Dia and Sora laughed. "You don't know what you have until it's gone," he announced.
… … … … … … … … …
Robin: I dun like Kairi…
Emma: I feel your pain.
Kairi: Um…I can still hear you.
Robin: DIE, VALLEY GIRL! (shoots Shinku Cannon)
Kairi: EEEEEEEEEEEEEEK! (runs away like the baby she is)
Sora: Kairi! I'll save you! (runs after her)
Riku: (cower) Um…Miss FG? Why did you make us weird?
FG: Because it's cool. (resumes typing)
Emma: Can we force her to watch Teletubbies or something?
Dia: Can I still have evil, possession-related powers?
Dia: I SAY THE AUTHORESS ROCKS!
FG: Thank you. That was weird, even for me. Just ask my school pal, Colin!
Colin: (shudder) Too…many…pictures of me…in…bikinis… (sucks thumb)
Jake: You drew your friend in a bikini? Your MALE friend?
FG: Uh… (shifty eyes) FG out, yo. (runs off to draw more)