The Name Game

Pairing: Slight RikuKairi. SoraKairi if you squint.

"I miss him." She choked into his shoulder, wine hair matted and limp, violet eyes swollen and bloodshot. Her head throbbed painfully, like her heart. Like his didn't. Not anymore. Not ever.

Riku could do nothing but clumsily embrace the girl. He wasn't good at this sort of thing, and he prayed he would never have enough experience to perfect the art. He did what he could. He held on. His own eyes dry as his shirt grew increasingly more saturated with salty droplets.

Cry your heart out. Cry enough for the both of us.

His arm moved mechanically, rubbing strained circles into her spine. She didn't seem to notice. Kairi never seemed to notice anything anymore. Her sunshine and saccharine smiles had vanished. Her eyes rarely pierced through the sedatives and anti-depressants. And when they did, it was somehow worse. The drug-induced hollowness replaced by a sharp, stabbing pain that ate away at her. Little by little.

There wasn't much left to take. And Kairi wasn't Kairi anymore. She was broken, and torn, and crumbling. But Riku was too, and that made it a little better, in a twisted sort of way.

It had been months and the hurt was still as deep as ever, scabbing over but still raw and bleeding.

"I miss him." She repeated, voice a little thicker now that the sedatives were spreading their numbing spell, making her mind sleepy and detached. Careless. Life was so much easier when you didn't care.

She pressed her body closer to his, desperate for the closeness and warmth that had been denied her since the world came crashing down about their heads. The closeness that he once provided. The closeness that was so painful now she couldn't even bare to think his name, let alone speak it. She could only think "I miss him", repeating it like a mantra because it was so much easier than "He's never coming back" or "He's dead".

So, so much easier.

Riku didn't reply. He never did, because if he admitted the truth—that he too missed him—he couldn't be strong anymore. He had to be strong. Just like Kairi had to cry.

"I miss him." The words tortured his ears as they slipped and slurred clumsily from lifeless lips, but she didn't cry this time. The drugs had her mind in a vice. She was as dead to the world as Sora was, mindlessly repeating words like a parrot.

She pulled herself closer still, whispering a dead name into his neck. A name she wouldn't have said otherwise. A name that made his hair stand on end, but didn't register in her numbed mind.

The message behind the word was apparent. He was just a replacement for Sora, but so was she, and that made it a little better, in a twisted sort of way.

I don't own any of the aforementioned characters.

I'm mildly pleased with this. Tell me what you think.