Disclaimer: I do not own Kingdom Hearts, nor do I really own the title. Haha, not that original, sorry.
The title I used because I was listening to a song on the Silent Hill 3 Soundtrack and it went well with what I was writing at the time. I used the name of the song as a title in thanks.
---cLoCkWoRk LiTtLe HaPpInEsS---
There was always something missing.
But a little kid shouldn't know that.
A little boy shouldn't have to run to his mother grasping at his chest saying it hurts him. A mother shouldn't have to tell her baby boy why.
"Your heart hurts. It's because you're sad, sweetie," she tells her son. The little blond boy watches her with his big, blue eyes.
"Don't cry, mommy," he says, reaching up to catch the tear rolling down her cheek. His mother scoops him up into her arms, holding him tightly.
Somehow, she knows. She is his mother, after all. And she knows this is the same thing that happened with her son's first word, with her son's first nightmare, her son's random mentioning of another being.
His first word was "Axel". His first nightmare he came running into her bedroom screaming, "Axel died, Axel died! Mommy, where is Axel?!" Or that time when he fell and scraped his knee. He picked himself up, saying, "I have to be strong to see Axel."
Axel isn't an imaginary friend.
He is a memory.
"Aros, who is Axel?" Riaki asks. Her little blond boy stares into her eyes for a long time. Riaki doesn't understand why he looks so mature, so grown up. She's scared, so she holds Aros tighter.
"Don't be ascared, mommy," says Aros. Riaki is afraid. Her little boy is digging through her heart when he looks into her eyes, and she doesn't understand why. "I don't know who Axel is."
Somewhere, far away, a thirteen year old suddenly falls to his knees.
On Aros's sixth birthday, he doesn't want to blow out the candles.
Riaki doesn't make him.
They sit there for a long time, watching the candles burn. Riaki falls asleep.
Aros doesn't breathe. He doesn't want the candles to go out. He watches the six tiny flames. He smiles. When the candles go out, he lets his mother sleep and curls up on her lap.
Riaki wakes up with a soundly sleeping boy in her arms. He whispers something; she can't understand it at first, but he repeats it over and over, louder each time.
"I know he has a heart."
Riaki holds him close to her. Riaki cries. "Yes, sweetie," she whispers, rocking back and forth, "you both do."
Then that day comes. It's a warm day, and Aros is anxious to go outside. He's overly eager to go to the park; he tugs on his mother's dress as she paces the house in search of her anklet. He follows her around as she frantically searches for her charm; it's very important to her, but Aros wants to go to the park.
"No, sweetie," Riaki says hurriedly. "Not until I find that charm your father gave me." Aros waits for awhile, then jumps up to grab his mother's wrist. She stares down at him; he's looking through her eyes again.
"Mommy," Aros says suddenly, "you left it by the sink."
Riaki leans down to kiss him on the forehead, smiling at him lovingly. She doesn't ask any questions. She just finds her anklet, puts it on, and tells Aros to get his shoes on.
"I already put them on, mommy," Aros says, smiling at her. She smiles again, although it's wistful this time. She tucks a strand of hair behind her ear and chuckles.
"Of course you did. Let's go."
When they arrive at the park, Riaki sits in the car for a time, staring through the windshield. Aros has already jumped out of the car, and is ecstatically running towards the other small children.
Riaki examines each of them. None of the little tykes are familiar. She's a little sad, for Aros, but she feels a sort of relief. But it's a false relief. She still feels like Aros is falling away from her.
Her chest begins to ache. Her heart flutters in anxiety. She isn't sure if she's losing Aros. She isn't sure if she ever had him.
He'll always be her little boy. She knew that the moment he was born.
But she also knew…
He wasn't born for her.
She doesn't know whether to be jealous or happy for her baby boy.
He's still her baby boy, right? No matter what?
She slowly climbs out of the car, but she stops by the closest tree, silently watching over Aros.
A boy stands across the playground from her. He's young; maybe fourteen or so. His hair is bright red; even though it's short, in the sun's glare, it burns. His eyes glitter aqua, and they see nothing but Aros.
Aros stops playing. He looks at the young man.
Riaki breathes in deeply, placing a hand over her heart. Her heartbeat races faster than it's ever gone before. She cries, just a little, as Aros cautiously approaches the redhead.
She can hear them speak.
"Hey," says the redhead. He smiles; it's a gloriously cheerful smile. It's so full of happiness that it glows. Riaki smiles sadly. "Do you remember me?"
Aros shakes his head. Then he reaches up towards the redhead, jumping up and down eagerly. The redhead scoops him up; he's still smiling. Aros looks awkward.
"My name is Lea. What's your name?"
"Aros!" the tiny blond boy proclaims proudly. The redhead chuckles.
"Want some sea-salt ice cream, Aros?"
The redhead looks up at Riaki. He's asking permission.
Riaki's lip quivers, and she nods. The boy tilts his head to the side and smiles. Somehow, it's comforting. Riaki know he'll take care of Aros.
She didn't need to the smile to know that. She already did.
Aros will be back. She knows she gets him for twelve more years,
But she still feels like he's lost forever.
She clutches the car keys tightly. She looks down at the ground, then back up at the boy carrying her son away.
She remembers something.
"That's all I've ever been able to do," she whispers. "And I always will. I'll always watch over you."
Lea looks down at the little kid in his arms, grinning. Aros is staring up at him, watching Lea's eyes intently.
A tear falls down his pale cheek; Lea hurries to wipe it away with his finger.
"Don't cry, Roxy," he says. Aros buries his face in the older boy's shoulder.
Lea smiles again, but this time it's sad, wistful even. He takes a deep breath.
"You kept me waiting too long."
Aros looks up at him again, staring blankly. They stare at each other for a very long time.
Lea's mouth falls open. Aros laughs at his appalled expression. "Pervert, pervert!" he sings.
Lea smirks. He ruffles the younger boy's hair. "Oh yeah?"
Lea shakes his head.
"It's your fault. You were born late." Beyond his control, he cries. Aros, with his tiny hands, tries to wipe the tears away but smears them instead. Lea laughs, even though the tears are still falling.
"I'm sowy, Axel."
Lea shakes his head again.
He hugs the six-year-old tightly. He looks into those big, deep blue eyes. He takes Aros's hand and places it on his chest. Aros understands when he feels the light thumping against his hand.
"…it was worth it."
Clockwork Little Happiness – End