For Namilaa's Christmas Challenge.
Seriously, though. I think I'm incapable of fluff. My God. I cannot write anything without having some touch of sadness in it. So, yeah. I don't think there's enough romance here for an amoeba to choke on, if an amoeba could even choke, per say. Err, yeah...
But, well, I hope you like it, anyhow. I tried to make the concept original. Dunno if I did.
Disclaimer: I do not own Kingdom Hearts, nor do I own Christmas.
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Music was falling outside her window.
Pulling the covers tighter around her form, she watched the weather dance and spiral through the darkness of the night. Snowflakes, all said to be unique and separately beautiful, entertained her vision as they were strewn different ways by winter's breath; she found a certain beauty in it, too, and even more so felt a sense of calm. A weak smile lighted on her lips, and she curled her legs beneath her body, red hair slipping off her shoulder to brush against her neck and fall into her eyes.
Momentarily distracted, she lifted one arm slowly, wincing at the sight of the IV even if such was so common to her eyes by now. A shuddering breath passed her lips, and she pushed away the strands of red bangs that were distracting her. Then, resting her back again on the multiple pillows behind her, she tilted her head and turned her eyes back to the gentle snowfall, defying time as it danced towards the ground outside her hospital room.
Her fingers curled again around the crisp sheets tightly, and she fumbled with the sheets for some time before she just moved her hands to her lap, smoothing the wrinkles there as her gaze trained to the side in an attempt to ignore the cold and empty room she sat in. The flimsy, artificial tree sat in a corner, a gift from Selphie, and cast splashes of different colors onto the few gifts beneath it and then the floor tiles, but it didn't ignite that holiday spirit in her heart.
It merely reminded her that she was alone on Christmas.
A sigh whispered past her lips. She wanted to be well again. She wanted her frail body to have that strength it had had just a year ago, so that she could be clad from head to toe in a new jacket and old boots, hat pressed down to reach her ears and then covering her eyes as her gloved hands held it situated against the cold. She wanted to slip and stumble and fall into a bed of snow as it washed icy cold down her neck, and she wanted to have snowball fights, being as always the first target because they loved to gang up on her.
Another sigh fled her body. They treated her as nothing but fragile, broken glass now.
Her lip quivered, but she knew better than to cry. It was Christmas Eve, and she'd been given her first white Christmas. That was a gift, wasn't it?
She lowered her eyes. No. Not enough to chase away drowning in sterile bed sheets, dizzy spells, and a frail body.
There was a knock to her door, rather hesitant, and she turned her attention towards the entryway, waiting to tell the nurse or doctor to just leave her be for the moment; she wasn't hungry, after all. But then a shock coursed through her and she was scrambling to sit up as he smiled from beneath a snow-covered hat and long brown bangs.
"Sora!" Her exclamation was soft, but nothing could diminish the brilliance of her smile. She tried to kick away her blankets, hoping that maybe her strength would flood back and she could run into his arms, but he was at her side before she had the chance, hushing her before she even started crying at her failure.
He smelled of fresh air and winter cold and snowfall, and she clung to him tight as she tried not to ruin the joy just his presence had brought to the room.
Her weakness was just so frustrating.
Pulling back as soon as she'd successfully reined her sobs, she wiped her eyes free of the tears that had fallen so suddenly at her anger. Still unable to smile, she merely stared hesitantly into his blue eyes as he offered her a tentative grin of his own, hand reaching up to pull off his hat. Clutching the fabric, he ripped it off of his head, and then shook his hair vigorously, bits of snow flickering to the sides and then onto the ground.
The sight was enough of a familiarity to cheer her up again, and she covered her mouth at her giggle as he finally ran a hand fluidly through his hair and blinked at her. A blink or two more and then he grinned easily back, ruffling her hair as she touched his arm and laughed again.
"Merry Christmas!" he beamed, leaning down and tapping her on the nose. She blushed in response, murmuring a reply back, and as he pulled away, launching into a hurried, tripping explanation as to why he was late – adding every so often how sorry he was – she watched him through half-lidded eyes, content as she settled back against her bed pillows.
He made her feel well again, just by being himself, and she was thankful to have him in her life.
Turning back around, as his back had been to her when he'd gone to retrieve by the door whatever it was that he had previously dropped, he rubbed the back of his neck and laughed. "Ah, but why bore you with my story? What's going on with you, Kairi?"
Light smile still dancing on her lips, she shrugged. "Nothing really."
"Come on," he prodded eagerly, walking back to her side. He took it upon himself to sit on her bed, close to her side, and she immediately moved closer so that she was pressing gently into his chest. His arm clasped at her waist, keeping his hold loose (but he'd always been gentle and cautious with her, so she didn't mind), and he lowered his head to give her an easy smile. "Any good news?"
She felt her smile strain on her lips momentarily, because she knew what it was that he was really asking. "Just that the hospital staff is throwing a Christmas party later. That's all, though."
"I see." He moved his gaze to the floor, hold on her tightening for the briefest of seconds, and then he forced a laugh. "That should be fun, though!" The cheer was also forced.
Sighing, she rested her head right on his chest, listening to his heartbeat. It fluttered quickly, and she wondered if it was from fear of losing her or because she was so close to him. Either thought made her cheeks flush with color, though.
"I missed you," she murmured gently, lifting her eyes to try to attract the attentions of her longtime friend back to her. She didn't want him dwelling on her dim future. He should be happy about the occasion, laughing his warm, gentle laugh as he talked about his life, about their friends, and maybe even about a…a girlfriend he might've had recently.
She buried her head back into his chest. She didn't want to think about that. She wanted Sora all to herself. She'd loved him first, after all.
But even as her arms encircled his waist, she knew that wasn't fair. She was dying, after all.
"Affectionate much?" he laughed gently, hand smoothing her hair as he held her closer. She felt a smile pull at her lips, and she lifted her gaze back to him, bangs back in her vision. They didn't stay there long, however, for he was pushing them away, whispering about how they weren't letting him see her beautiful eyes.
She blushed, eyes wide as his hand slipped down to her cheek, but he glanced at her hesitantly and then suddenly stood, rubbing hurriedly at the back of his hair in embarrassment as she caught herself from falling by grabbing the mattress.
Sora fell to one knee, digging through some bag on the floor as she sighed and grinned nonetheless.
"You're always so unpredictable," she said with a light laugh, and as he stood, gift in his hands, he paused to blink at her. Slowly he began to smile, and then was grinning as he thrust the present into her possession, standing off to the side still and shifting weight awkwardly as he waited for her to open it.
She stared at the crudely-wrapped gift, and then lifted her gaze back to Sora, who was by now bouncing on his feet, bright eyes eager for her just get on with it and open the thing. She giggled – he always wanted to get her the best presents – and gestured for him to sit beside her, which he did as she tore at the wrapping covering the present. The present now revealed as it was situated in her lap, she clasped her hands, giving a little cry of bliss.
It wasn't jewelry, or a new coat, or even boots which she would never be able to wear out into the snow. It was merely a hot chocolate set, complete with a mug, quite the common gift; but, still, it had her smiling nonetheless. The last time she'd had hot cocoa was last Christmas, sitting with her friends around a fire and laughing over nothing. So, as she laughed into her hand over the silly little thing, she leaned into her best friend, happy that with just a poorly-wrapped present he'd given her a whole mess of old memories. Her left hand fingered the card, too, reading the casual Merry Christmas that was in his own scrawl, and as she flipped it open fully she felt her smile lessen as she concentrated on the words.
'I know you're probably not going to get what you really want for Christmas, Kairi. I could never give you that, could I? But make one wish, any wish at all, and I promise to make it come true. You're my best girl, and I'm gonna make this count, you know. Sora.'
"Oh," he said, flustered, and she lifted her head. "I actually gave you that." He was blushing as he scratched his head, laughing weakly. "Didn't think I had the guts to."
"Why?" she asked, smoothing the paper as she smiled down at it. "It's sweet."
He shifted uncomfortably, and she giggled, leaning comfortably back into his chest. And he ruffled her hair, exhaling softly as he turned his head to glance at the flickering tree, commenting about how it was rather pathetic and that Selphie had apparently failed in her mission to buy a cheerful-looking fake tree. Kairi giggled, assuring him that it was the thought that counted and she didn't really mind.
He shrugged, toying with her hair gently as Kairi watched two nurses pass by, chatting excitedly to one another about plans they had outside of the binding walls which imprisoned her. Lowering her eyes, she pursed her lips, slightly irritable at the fact that they were allowed to leave. If only she had the freedom to do such.
She was tired of pale-white walls and sickly florescent lights.
"Sora?" she murmured gently, after time had passed and she'd dissolved into thought for quite some time. Making sure he'd heard her, she tilted her head and lifted her eyes to gaze at him, immediately drowning in his blue orbs.
"Hmm?" he asked, shifting slightly and loosening his hold, obviously thinking he was bothering her.
He wasn't, though. "I thought of a wish."
He blinked in surprise, caught off guard by her suddenness, but then he laughed. "Kairi, don't you think you should put a little thought into it? It's a once in a lifetime chance to make me do whatever you want."
She was tempted to point out the fact that some lifetimes were shorter than others, but she knew he'd get mad and so she just shook her head stubbornly. "No. My mind's made up."
He sighed, placing his hand on her forehead. "You're unbelievably difficult."
"You love that about me," she said with a grin.
He merely smiled gently. "You were saying?"
Moving his gift from her lap to the bed, she placed her hands on either side of her, gripping the mattress as she let her dangling legs ease down to touch the floor. He made to protest, trying to pull her back, but she shot him a look just as the icy touch of the ground brushed against her bare feet. Looking back down to concentrate, she swallowed, arms shaking as she began to push herself up. Her legs shook, and she was becoming dizzy, but she managed to stand straight finally, unstable but out of bed.
But it only lasted seconds, because her knees gave way and he had to scramble to catch her.
"You're being ridiculous," he hissed into her ear, anger in his voice laced with fear.
She smiled gently, turning her head to meet his expression with her own pleased one. "Could you help me to the window?" she murmured softly.
His expression looked torn. "No, Kairi. Come on, this isn't right. You need rest. You know how---"
"I want to see the snow up close," she insisted, begging him with her eyes.
He averted his gaze. "Kairi…"
At her words he let out a sigh of frustration, but nodded anyway, arm grasping her around the waist as he pulled her up so that she was standing with his help. Then, careful of her IV, he guided her around the bed and grasped the stand, leading her towards the window at the far end of the room as she limped along with him, cold seeping into her feet and up into her legs.
She felt unbelievably weak, but she was almost standing on her own, and it was such a great feeling.
Lifting her head as he stopped, she gasped at the sight up close and reached out, moving out of his grip and catching herself on the windowsill. He protested loudly and in anger as he grabbed her around the waist again, but she was too caught up in the beauty of the outside to give his pains a second thought. Brushing her fingertips against the glass chilled by the winter wind, she allowed her eyes to fall on the field coated in a silver garland of snowfall, the bed of white the resting place of clouds and dreams and hope and brilliance. She'd missed it, missed this time of year, and missed this kind of feeling, because with it the pain was fading slightly to let in a gracious kind of cheer.
Her hand dropped to her waist, and her fingers linked with his as she stared softly out onto the fields and beyond, where the trees were brushing the black of the sky and the moon was glowing palely. It was Christmas again, another holiday she'd been able to see, and she realized she wanted to see a lot more of them, especially with her blue-eyed snow angel at her side.
Lifting her head, she grinned playfully at him, replying that she very much appreciated his help. And he blushed and coughed and lowered his head, chin resting on her hair as she spread her hands against the windowsill and murmured that she loved him, that she really, really did.
His arms came to wrap around her stomach, and his head came to nuzzle next to hers, and he whispered that that was good, because he really, really loved her, too.
Jingle bells, Christmas tunes, sleigh rides, and silver garlands were in his voice, the promise of a worthwhile holiday and gingerbread memories making her smile and feel light on her feet. Sora was Christmas, her Christmas, and as long as he was there, holding her close enough so that she could touch the hope resting beyond her barriers, everything would be all right. Even now, she could almost feel that new day resting on the horizon.
And she couldn't wait to share it with him.
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If you ask me, it wasn't anything too astounding, but I tried. Hope it's liked! Please review.
And an (almost) Merry Christmas.