Hey, guys! I'm not dead!

So, yeah. I'm back, and yet I'm not - It's inspiration, not time, with which I'm struggling. And I've got to say; it's putting up a hell of a fight. As much as I would love to be back and writing, too, I'm having a real hard time doing so, so I hope you'll all bear with me. Besides that, I've been horrendously lazy and unmotivated - that'll explain why I haven't replied to any of your wonderful reviews, contest entries, or PMs. (I am SO sorry for being such an ass, by the way). Hopefully, though, as school draws nearer to a close, I'll upload more stories; but there are no guarantees.

Anyway, the reason this oneshot was written at all is due to two lines from Last Winter's song, A Pacific Romance; and they are: "Just remember, your hand was meant for mine"; "And I called your name through sunsets but you never noticed/Your eyes were always closed." I thought they were absolutely beautiful, and so I wanted to incorporate them into a story of mine. Here's hoping the end result isn't too terrible. :D

Disclaimer: I own neither Kingdom Hearts nor any of Last Winter's ideas/creations.

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The nights were the hardest.

With the setting of the sun, all glimmers of hope in his body faded, dying on the quiet sea like the sparks of golden light washing into black. In the sand he stood alone, shoes abandoned numerous footprints back, toes digging deeper as he tried to stay put and never again have to move forward. His eyes, meanwhile, searched out the horizon that the stars were slowly swallowing up, hoping to find the line where his voyage ended and his life as a normal boy began. Each time, however, the waves sloshed and swelled and joined the settling night sky, and his gaze instead focused on all the worlds waiting for freedom, so near to his fingertips that he was already almost there.

But with every star his stare cradled, Destiny Islands fell further and further behind.

Now, as his slow and careful stroll brought him closer to the shoreline, his palms bare of weapons and upturned towards the waning light, he watched the sea stretch an infinite distance away, linking his world with hers. It was the same sky they shared, the same sun, the same salt-laden air that filled their lungs and dried their tears. He was almost staring into her eyes as his skin met the ocean waves, almost touching her hair and taking her hands as he mouthed her name to the pale sunset. It had been so long since their footsteps had mingled and crossed on the same sand, but he could feel her.

She was watching the same day close, he knew, never hearing his voice that fell to the waves but always waiting for him to return – always waiting for him to fulfill his promise.

He remembered those days that he wanted to go back to, the ones that had come before scavenging, before scars, before battles between right and wrong had blurred into confusion and enemies didn't seem so much like enemies any longer. He remembered when being the hero was a game of collecting seashells and fighting against ocean waves, and when failure only hurt for a small fraction of time. Most of all, he remembered when being himself was enough, and when his friends by his side was something he never had to fear he'd lose.

Swinging from palm trees and crawling in caves had been the only adventure he had ever known, and he regretted ever wanting something more.

With a sigh whispering past his lips and fingers running tiredly through brown locks, he watched the undulating waters, the light of the sky softening into a dusty blue. He missed home. The shores just weren't as beautiful on this side of the universe.

Taking a step further into the breaking surf, he stood quietly, waves lapping at his shins as the wind carried across it swirled around his form and fluttered his black jacket gently. The back of his hand brushing at his cheeks, sweeping away the salt water that had collected there, he smiled reminiscently ahead. He wanted so much to say that tomorrow he'd be walking through the world gates of Destiny Islands, feeling the cool granules of his sand beneath the soles of his feet, feeling the tropical water pull at his soaked and heavy shorts the way the waves here did. But no amount of wishing on the stars could usher him back – not yet, not when lives were still broken and darkness was still pulsing with greed. So he'd fight – it was inevitably what he ended up doing.

And he would get back to her.

He'd spent too many nights losing sight of her against the backdrop of stars, of having his pleas of her name claimed by the darkness, stolen from him like so much already had been. He'd lost too many smiles to hours spent screaming for her, the tears slipping insistently down his cheeks as waves slammed against his torso, the spray erupting around his form as he shouted on even against the breaking of his voice. He wanted his nights to be peaceful again, back to the times where he could fall asleep from trying to count the endless number of stars scattered above his head. And one of these days he would go home – he had that promise to keep.

However, here, on the other side of the universe and waist-deep in water, his arms remained stretched out, in a futile attempt to reach beyond worlds of distance. He stood resolutely, as if she could still take his hands and hold him close, the echo of their heartbeats keeping time with the crashing sea; and if he closed his eyes to the cooling breeze, he could almost feel that fantasy become a reality. Sometimes he was sure that her fingertips ghosted against his, but he never dared to open his eyes to check, his own hands twitching in earnestness as the waves swelled around his form. With every beat of his heart he could feel her, practically standing in front of him as he kept his breaths even and slow. It was enough to keep him going – as long as she was still waiting for him, he had all the strength he would ever need.

One day soon he would crash through his home island's waves again, he knew, the spray catching the sunlight as he struggled towards shore. And there, waiting for him as loyally as always, Kairi would wait, her eyes catching his as her arm stretched out in welcome.

And after miles of space and so much sea, their palms would finally meet.

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Ah, man. I hope it's not too boring, guys. Please review.