Entitled: Sea Breeze Lipstick
Fandom: Kingdom Hearts
Length: 2,000 words
Disclaimer: I do not own Kingdom Hearts and etc.
Summary: A teeny-bopper romance that's been a decade in the making. And all he had to do was flip his hair. — RikuKairi
Notes: Happy Birthday, Ali! Sorry I wasn't there for it. And also that this is like two weeks late. You are allowed to be late for my birthday present. Did I mention my birthday's tomorrow? Okay. Just wanted to be sure. And back up my 2,000 word claim. You know how it is.
He gets Sora in a headlock before Kairi marches over to their squabble and shoves—really slams—him over. He eats sand. He coughs it up and leaps to his feet and puffs out his chest and is all ready to take on this new adversary, except then she turns out to be this tiny, midget red head, scolding him as ferociously as eight-year-olds can.
He blanches. She takes his horrified silence to mean, Yes, Miss Kairi, I respect your authority, instead of, This is so embarrassing, or, I hate my life, or even just, Why am I such a masochist?
In fourth grade he closes his eyes, sticks his hand in the hat, and pulls out her name. His secret valentine. He does not freak out. He does not forcibly monitor his own breathing. He does not spend the next two weeks carefully checking every vending machine change slot so he'll be able to buy her chocolates. He does not have a panic attack on the night of the thirteenth and wind up stuffing the chocolates into the mess beneath his bed like they were incriminating evidence in a murder case.
No, Riku does not do any of those things. That would not be cool.
He digs into his backpack, pulls out the first piece of paper he finds, and in a feverish haze writes, 'Happy Valentines day. Hope it was good. Sincerely, Your Secret Valentine."
After much deliberation and considerable agony, he draws a tiny heart. The longer he stares at it, the more he squirms. The teacher asks him if he needs to use the restroom. He says something like, No Ms. Smeltzer, but really means, You despicable cow, I attempt to confess my innermost feelings and you act like I'm constipated. He scribbles out the heart so violently, the desk bangs on and off its awkward, too-short leg. When he attempts to erase the entire thing, the paper rips, and he is forced to make a noise somewhere between Why does the universe hate me? and Oh God, it's all over.
And then his attempted valentine is snatched away and delivered, and he sits on the edge of his seat whilst Kairi slowly, slowly peels the page open. When she frowns, his heart just about stops. And then she looks over at him and says indignantly, "Riku! You wrote this on the back of your math homework!"
When they're all graduating from elementary school, Kairi hands something suspiciously star-shaped to Sora, and Riku's reaction falls very, very near, Mr. President, congress has just given us the go-ahead on nuclear warfare.
However, being the mature and reasonable young adult that he is, he confronts Sora in a subtle and discreet manner. It goes something like, Hey, Sora, what the hell did Kairi just give to you?
Unfortunately for both of them, Sora shows signs of resistance. Say what?
And so Riku is forced to take an appropriate course of action, You know what I'm talking about. Don't make me hit you with this stick.
It was at this point that Sora begins reevaluating his priorities, as is wont to happen when a person is faced with the threat of physical violence. He replies with something like, I really don't know what you mean, which is actually just, You hit me with that stick and I'm telling Kairi, but in more manly terms.
On his thirteenth birthday, Riku sits up very late, staring at the ocean and brooding. Or lusting. The two are often synonymous. So he sits up counting waves and wondering if maybe Kairi's ever kissed anyone. Of course a more accurate way of saying this would be more like—if he could maybe somehow convince her to kiss him. You know. Purely in the name of science. It's not like he's an expert or anything—I mean, he totally is, because guys like Riku were born with a perfect and totally complete sexual knowledge and—he's a virgin.
But anyway, the pizzazz. He can't get it out of his head. Like, okay, the fireworks are a load or crap. He doesn't honestly expect the stars to implode should he ever get lucky enough to—anyway. Metaphorical fireworks aside, there's this girl and her name is Kairi and once upon a time she floated up like a message in a bottle, but the kind that he can't break open. That's the thing. He has no idea how to go about it—not the kissing part, because he totally—didn't know about that either but obviously that was the sort of thing one improvised on and it wasn't like she'd kissed anyone before either but—but. But what if she had?
Riku's brain threw out helpful bits of advice, things like, Please, she's twelve, and, Yeah, but she's hot, to Whatever, I probably have better hair than him anyways, and finally, Oh my god that is the gayest thing I have ever thought in my life.
Just a couple weeks before creepy bug-things infest the island, Riku wakes screaming unintelligibly. This roughly translates, Damn it! I'm stuck in the 'best friend' role!
Only a couple weeks later he's lugging around a comatose Kairi and suddenly, Would you kiss me? doesn't seem as important as, What do I have to do so that you'll wake up?
He folds her up and keeps her pressed tightly against him, reassured by the dull, struggling thud of her heartbeat. If he tucks her head a certain way, her slackened muscles make it seem like she's sleeping. He holds her there and thinks, and thinks, although the decision has already been made. It sits heavily within him, insistent. Light and dark, good and evil. Power. That's all it really is, just power. And the light isn't offering.
When The Witch glides into the room, she studies him with cold eyes and says, She will be your downfall, when what she really means is, I know how to push you.
So yeah, there's a little part of him that's banging its head against the wall and yelling, Do you never pay attention to the moral of the story? and This is the most obvious, blatant, neon-signs-and-flashing-lights trap in the history of ever and you are walking straight into it.
But the thing is, he isn't using The Darkness out of greed or spite or malice. He's using it because he is human and selfish and fifteen and he doesn't want to loose the girl he never got. So maybe this is why he doesn't look back.
It figures that Sora would get the girl and he'd be stuck with a mouse on helium. A mouse who insists Riku should address him as, Your Majesty, or King Mickey, and starts hitting him when he doesn't.
Riku plods along the darkened city, attempting to drone out the high-pitched squealing, and thinks stuff like, Did Sora and Kairi make out? and Damn it, I want a lucky charm too, and finally dwindles down to, At least it wasn't the stupid duck.
After a couple days of frenzied battles, (Mickey directed, Riku hacked) Riku abruptly realizes that the passed the exit a few days ago, and is just about to tell the mouse this, when he realizes that Mickey's gone, and now some creepy castle beckons. Even more strangely, it's a castle he doesn't recognize, and considering the number of princesses he'd abducted recently, that was saying something.
He says something like, Great, another pain in the ass, when what he's thinking is, God, I hope they'll feed me.
Having dealt with bucket loads of his own angst, Riku then sets off on a quest of self discovery, one which he dearly hopes is not disguised as a midlife crisis. He wears all black, trudges through rain, and at one point meets up with this anal blondie who kicks him to the curb before they've had adequate time to exchange badass banter.
It is at this point that Riku begins feeling rather homesick. Even more so when he wakes up looking like he'd gone swimming in tanning lotion and grown two feet.
Of course by that point, Kairi had once again managed to play the damsel card, and so he had more important things to take care of. Sort of like how he was going to explain looking like a super villain. Maybe like, It's all the rage in Paris, or, Riku? Who's Riku? or just Yeah, well, since when are you into dresses with the zipper in the front? except he couldn't say that, because then she might stop.
The solution, of course, was to should himself in a cloak of mystery and limit all communication to obscure hand gestures. Which she followed diligently, because girls like Kairi all know to listen to shady, mute men.
The weirdest thing is that he'd spent all this time being the bad, dangerous kind of bored. He knew Destiny Islands well enough to know that nothing ever happened on them. But now that everything was over, he'd be lying to say the wonder lust was totally gone, but just as importantly, he'd realized something. Destiny Islands was where Kairi was, whatever her place of origin, it was her home.
Sitting with her and Sora, he looks at the sun and thinks, Okay, be cool Riku, and, Karma dictates that I should get a girlfriend, right? and Sora, is it really necessary for you to keep the stupid duck around?
He watches the trinity yelp and splash through the surf, while Kairi leans against him, laughing. When she catches him looking at her he very, very resolutely does not look away. Because he is manly and cool and he dragged her unconscious body around for like a month, and that had better count for something.
She says, "I'm glad you're back, Riku." but means, Wow, you've gotten tall.
And his very carefully planned, date-getting coercion abruptly lodges somewhere in his throat. He hacks for a moment. "Yeah," he says, but means, Damn it Kairi, stop cheating!