Okay, another product of super random inspiration...but mostly the result of me getting fed up with the endless Sora bashing that seems to happen, i.e. Sora's too cheerful, he's too stupid! *GAH! It pisses me off to no end* This is really my opinion on it, so uh, feel free to let me know what you think of it.

Also, consider this disclaimed and whatnot.

ALSO ALSO I still don't have a beta, I HAVE read this through several times, but if you see any glaring errors, as always, let me know ;)

Three companions sat around a campfire, barely moving as the flames crackled and hissed into the night sky. The clearing they were inhabiting echoed with the chirps of crickets, and the rustling movement of swaying trees in the breeze. Sparks flew from the blaze, tickling the grass they landed on, but snuffing out moments later, not strong enough to actually trigger a new fire. The embers cast the shadows of the companions in strange ways, contorting the shapes of their owners, making them near unrecognizable.

One with almost cartoonish hair, that spiked up in ways that most often could not be accomplished without a vast amount of effort, and product. Another, with doglike features, taller than the others, but willowy in build. The last, for lack of other words, was a duck.

They spoke in rushed whispers, not wanting to alert anything to their presence. A shield lay discarded next to a staff of a sort, forgotten in the heat of the conversation taking place. The murmurs carried softly, and the three inhabitants of the clearing strained to hear each other.

This was a normal night for Sora, Donald and Goofy. Sleeping in the wilderness, with no comforts to speak of. They had only each other for company, which, if you knew the three of them, got very tiresome, very quickly. Very often they couldn't speak above a whisper, lest they should alert Heartless or Nobodies to their presence.

Tonight was no different, and the strain of this lifestyle was very clearly showing in Donald and Goofy. They were tired, exhausted even, and it was difficult to remain alert. Donald was irate; more so than usual, and he was almost unbearable to be around… more so than usual. Goofy, the quieter of the two, showed symptoms of mental and physical weakness in different ways. He only spoke when spoken to, and even then, he said as little as it took to get the point across.

Sora was the only one who showed no signs of their rough living conditions. He consistently strolled along with a grin on his face, or an angry pout, if battle called for it. Even then though, it wasn't long before that cheery smile took over his composure again. He always took that extra watch shift, or made that extra trip for firewood. His young age spoke for his vast amounts of energy, but the one thing that Donald and Goofy could not figure out, was how he managed to stay so positive, so naïve but so effective at the same time. It was almost infuriating to them, seasoned warriors, that this boy (Keyblade Master be damned) could outlast them, and come out looking better than them. This was the topic of tonight's conversation.

"Sora?" Donald's scratchy quack broke the fragile silence over the clearing, and the aforementioned teen looked up to gaze questioningly at his friend.

"What's up Donald?" He asked, his mouth quickly forming a crooked smile, his blue eyes half-hidden by bangs that had gone too long without being cut.

Donald opened his beak to answer, but was quickly cut off by the previously stoic Goofy.

"How do you do it Sora?" No Hyucks, or gosh's; the knight was serious, lifting his head only slightly from his slumped posture.

Sora of course, was understandably confused.

"Do what?" He asked, chuckling in obliviousness, leaning back to adopt his usual hands behind head relaxing position.

"That!" Donald pointed out in exasperation.

Sora's confused expression drove Goofy to lean forward and rest his shaking head in his hands, sighing heavily in frustration. Sora quirked his head to the side, trying to figure out just what was plaguing his friends. The tense silence remained for a few deafening moments, and then was broken just as quickly.

"How do you, be like that, all the time Sora? How? It just doesn't seem possible." Goofy elaborated, sitting up abruptly and gesturing with his hands, suddenly invigorated. The aforementioned teen just continued to look at Goofy in confusion, his lips parted slightly with an unasked question.

"Be like what? Happy?" Sora asked, to clarify. At the immediate nods of assent from both Donald and Goofy, Sora adopted his cheesiest smile and laughed loudly, the echoes of his amusement bouncing between the trees on the borders of the clearing.

Donald quacked his disapproval.

"We face horrible, sad situations all the time! It's so depressing! How you always come out with a smile, Sora?"

"I dunno." Sora answered, shrugging, trying not to notice when both of his companion's shoulders slumped. "I can't really help it. I guess I'm just a happy person by nature." He tried to feebly explain, laughing embarrassedly because he knew his answer was in no way satisfying for either Donald or Goofy.

The silence that followed this time was one of finality. The conversation was over, at least for tonight. With few words, the three warriors separated and went into their separate tents; a necessity since the Gummi ship could no longer accommodate Donald, Goofy, and a growing Sora.

Later in the night, when the sound of easy, paced breathing floated through the clearing, Sora lay awake. Tossing and turning, he could not bring himself to close his eyes and drift into sleep. Goofy and Donald's questions from earlier kept replaying through his head.

"How do you do it Sora?"

"How do you, be like that, all the time?"

"It doesn't seem possible."

"How you always come out with a smile, Sora?"

Lying in his sleeping bag, it was easy for Sora to curl up on his side, facing away from his two companions. How do I do it? He asked himself. Maybe it's not so much the how, as the why. Sora reasoned with himself, thinking.

So, why do I do it?

Maybe it's because, when I'm happy, it's easy to pretend that I haven't been looking for you since I defeated Ansem, and haven't found a single trace. It's easy to pretend that the King honestly has no idea where you are, and is telling me everything he knows.

It's easy to pretend that you haven't been kidnapped by a rogue member of Organization XIII, and that I don't miss you every single second of every single day.

Sighing heavily, Sora stretched himself out fully in the sleeping bag, grimacing when his toes hit the seam. He was sick of having to buy new ones to accommodate his rapid growth spurt.

Maybe, I like to pretend to be naïve because that means I don't really have to think about what I'm doing. I don't have to realize that I'm killing countless creatures that really just want to be whole. I don't have to come to the conclusion that maybe I'm just a mass murderer being controlled by people that think they know what's best.

Perhaps, it's easier to act the way I do, because the obliviousness that I feign allows me to live my life without the burdens of my past weighing down every step I take. Pretending I don't realize what's going on around me is just another way for me to cope with the fact my life sucks right now.

Pretty much, one best friend is missing, and possibly doesn't want to be found. Another has been kidnapped by a bunch of crazy unwhole people that want revenge on me for killing more than half of their numbers. I've been killing creatures that really truly I don't understand. I follow the orders of people that appear to be legitimate, but really I haven't even looked into the situation myself to form my own opinions and decide what side I should be fighting for. And to be frank, I've been living and fighting with a dog and a duck.

I understand that we do what we have to, but seriously, what the hell?

Lying back and gazing at the stars, Sora picked out the brightest ones, the ones that he had travelled to, and 'helped'. He knew Riku and Kairi were on one of them. He just had to find them. He just had to work faster, fight harder, look in all the dark corners…

Thinking about it, it was understandable that Donald and Goofy were confounded by Sora's ability to be so happy and naïve all the time. Given the situation, it would be expected that the hero and champion of the universe would be a little hardened, and would act a little bit less rash, and more intelligently.

It's a good question, how. Sora thought to himself. How can I act this way when I am surrounded by worlds where everything is falling to pieces?

And as soon as he had asked himself the question, Sora came up with an answer, a revelation of sorts.

Maybe I act this way because it's the only way I can live.

So, let me know what you thought. Any and all feedback is appreciated. Thanks for reading!