A/N: What can I say? I was bored, and in a realistic mood for once (my head's usually in the clouds), and I ended up writing this; so here it is.


The Truth About Hearts


Hearts are really quite overrated. In romance novels, they've been over glorified again and again as a symbol of caring and love. People associate sensation and feeling with the heart. When one hears the word "heart" that brings to mind the image of the smooth red heart-shaped boxes that lovers often exchange, when the reality is much different.

Hearts are grotesque to look at almost: reddish, bluish blobs of vein and tissue that act as the epicenter of the human body. Their job is to keep the blood pumping and to keep us alive and breathing, and nothing more. The reason we feel has nothing to do with our hearts; it's all in our heads. Touch, taste, hearing, sight, smell…it's all linked to the brain, not the heart. And anyways, if we supposedly can't feel, how in the world would we know?

Is non-feeling the cold I feel when the wind ruffles the leaves of the trees?

Is the flutter in my chest whenever I've done something particularly clever a sign that I am unfeeling?

No; at least, I don't think so.

Whenever one of the other Organization members shivers, I always chuckle, and make some snarky comment on how "unfeeling people could feel the cold"

The retort was always the same. "It's all in our heads, Axel," they'd insist, glaring daggers, "We know it's cold, even if we can't feel it, and so we shiver."

They don't even seem to realize that that's really all feeling is: It's knowing, seeing, hearing, smelling, touching, tasting, and responding accordingly. When you touch something sharp, you know it hurts, as your hand and mind know it hurts, and so you respond for that reason. You know, and you feel it hurts because of the nerves in your skin, and because of your brain; the heart's got nothing to do with it.

When I chased after Roxas, they all laughed at me, and taunted me. "Trying to play make-believe Axel?" Larxene asked cruelly, her lips curved in a wicked smirk, "Pretending you feel? That you can care?? We can't feel Axel! We're nothing but empty containers; Heartless, and without souls!"

"That," I told her, "Is all in your head."

It's true that the Organization can't feel though; it's true, not because we don't have hearts, but because we've convinced ourselves we can't feel, and because we let ourselves pretend that the heart is the reason people feel, even though it isn't. We are immoral because we've persuaded ourselves that we can't be any better. We are as we are, because we've talked ourselves into believing every word that Xemnas spoon fed us about what it means to be a Nobody.

Even I got caught up in it all once, and I don't' think I'll ever completely escape it. After all, if someone drills something into you often enough, it will never leave you. Even though I know feeling isn't in the heart, but in our heads, the idea that we're Nobodies without the ability to feel will always haunt me; because they'd all told me it was truth again and again, it will always be there as a little voice that will whisper: "But what if they were right? What if they are right?" Like the old religion that you can never quite let go of, a shadow of doubt will cling to me until the day I die.

I know I shiver because I'm cold, and that I sweat when I'm hot; I know that my gut twists uncomfortably when I'm anxious, and that the swelling in my chest is happiness, and that I don't smile without having reason to.

Maybe, if they are right in the end—I'm the one that's delusional. Maybe the idea that I can feel is all in my head, and they're the ones being realistic, but still…

I like to think that the friendship I had with Roxas was real; that the joy we brought each other by merely spending time in each others company was real, and not feigned or a lie. I like to think that his smiles were as sincere as I think mine were.

The reason Roxas left was because of all this, and because he too was filled with doubt. Doubt about his reason for existence, about whether or not he could feel… doubts that I could understand and had too. So I'll chase him, and bring him back, because even if it's all in my head… I feel as if that's the right thing to do. Because I think…together, we might be able to figure out answers to all the questions we have, and that we may be able to get the others to realize the truth—or perhaps the delusion—that yes, we can feel.

I want to bring Roxas back because delusion or not, I feel emptier because of his absence, and I'm sure not making up this feeling of despair for kicks.