On an unknown world in an unknown circuit, an unknown boy with an unknown name and unknown origins washed up on an unknown shore. A young girl, around five, found him. "Who… are you?" she asked.

"K-Kuri," came the faint reply…

Somewhere, elsewhere, a restless spirit held by the darkness half-woke, and half-forgotten incidents, things past, lost memories, woke with it. Who am I..., it's thoughts began. I do not recall.

In a place where light is held in the center of darkness, a presence of light is said to reside. This presence stirred, beginning to listen for the first time in five years. Sora, it thought. What went wrong?

Away from the bustling streets of Radiant Garden, a pretty young girl was sleeping on a tiny island, just big enough for two sleepers, in a place where a strange twist of gravity created many rising waterfalls all around the viewer. The strange water was pulled in such a way that it could be walked on. With a great yawn, the girl woke up to someone standing over her. "Whoa!" she shouted, snapping to attention. The boy who had been standing there laughed. "Give me a rest, Kuri!" she complained. Kuri had brown hair, carefully spiked. His clothes were careless, loose. He wore a short-sleeved hooded jacket, a blue shirt, and black pants. His eyes were a soft blue. The girl had short red hair and wore nearly the same outfit, but in black and silver.

"Lara, you lazy bum!" Kuri said. "I thought I'd find you crashing down here."

"You got it wrong! There was this voice, and then this huge THING swallowed me! I couldn't breathe, I couldn't-" Kuri conked her on the head. "You still dreaming?" he asked.

"It wasn't a dream! Or was it? I dunno… What was that place? So bizarre…"

"Yeah, whatever."

"Kuri, what was your hometown like? You know, where you grew up?"

"I've told you before, I don't remember."

"Nothing at all?"


"You ever want to return?"

"Well… I'm happy here. But you know, I wouldn't mind going to see it."

"I want to see it too! I want to see all the worlds."

"So what are we staying around here for?"

"Aren't you forgetting someone?" a female voice said from behind them. Lara turned to see a tall girl, older than them, carrying something made of metal. Her hair was the color of polished silver, her eyes like ice. "I guess I'm the only one working on the ship." She tossed the part at Lara. "And you're as lazy as she is, Kuri."

"Glad you noticed. Alright, we'll finish it together! I have the parts from Lara's dad. You've got the engine? Riika, you're a lifesaver!"

"That means it's finished!" She seemed excited, as well she should. They were going to sail their new ship under the Rising Falls and the rock cliff that marked the edge of their ruler's territory. They hoped that they would reach a new world. They all ran off to install the final components.

Watching the sunset from the highest floating rock (another weird twist of gravity in the Rising Falls area), they discussed their plans for the next day.

"Kuri's home is out there somewhere, right?" Lara asked, gesturing at the cliff.

"Could be," replied Riika. "We'll never know by staying here."

"How far can the ship take us, after we go under the cliff?"

"Who knows? If we have to, we'll think of something else."

"Suppose you get to another world?" Kuri asked, then laughed. "What would you do there?"

"Well, I… haven't really thought about it," Riika replied. "I've always wondered why we're here, in this town. If there are other worlds out there, why did we end up on this one? And suppose there are other worlds," she continued, "then ours is just a little piece of something much greater. We could just as easily have ended up somewhere else, right?"

"I dunno," Lara replied, swinging up to laze contentedly on the island.

"Exactly," was Riika's reply. "That's why we need to go out there and find out. Just sitting here won't change a thing. It's the same old stuff. So let's go."

Kuri just shook his head, then said, "You've really been thinking a lot lately, haven't you?"

"Thanks to you. If you'd never washed up here, I never would have thought of any of this. Kuri, thanks." Hesitantly, Kuri said, "You're welcome." They all headed across the grounds of the castle toward the town. The castle wasn't a huge, looming fortress, watched by a cruel king, but an open, inviting place, welcoming visitors.

That night, Lara had a dream. She was wandering through the castle and came upon a door. It was always locked. When she went up to it to try it, it had been left open. She walked into a room she had never seen before. Inside was another door. It had no handle, and no keyhole, yet it looked like just another door in the castle. Suddenly, an ominous voice, female, rang out. "I have come to see the door to this world."

"What?" Lara asked, turning around. She saw no one.

"This world has been connected. Tied to the darkness. Soon to be completely eclipsed."

"Well, whoever you are, stop psyching me out like this! Huh?" Standing in a shadowed alcove near the door was a female figure in a black hooded cloak. "You understand so little."

"You'll see! I'm gonna go out and learn what's out there."

"A meaningless effort. One who knows nothing can understand nothing, and you do not yet know what lies beyond the door." Lara took one last look at the door, and turned back to the cloaked figure. But where she had been only darkness remained. Lara walked out of the castle, and back to her home. Then, she woke up, and it was morning. When she looked at her hands, however, they were dark, as though she had touched walls that had not been cleaned for ages, which, in her dream, she had.