A/N: Hey guys. I know I've been on a streak of oneshots lately, but my life has been pretty hectic for the past quite a while. I also haven't written a good author's note in a while. Sadly, that's not what this is, really.

This is a dedication. This is dedicated to my boyfriend of several months, the person who taught me how to love and care truly for someone… also the person who taught me to trust people again after a lot happened in my life.

Before I met you, I used to think of my first (and hopefully only) love as 'the real Riku' since my only comparison was what I felt for my game characters but… I was wrong. It's not like that at all. It's more like… Riku is the fake you, no substitute for the real thing, like a cheap glass imitation of a flawlessly cut diamond. This story is for you.

Oh, yes – the song used is "Broken" by Seether feat. Amy Lee. I don't own it or KH.


Broken

{I wanted you to know that I love the way you laugh
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain away}

The silver-haired man looked down at his hands, the training room too empty, the halls too quiet. A voice echoed in his mind, laughing, joking… without them, it wasn't right on the ship coming back home, and it hadn't been right since then, on the ship, in his house… it just wasn't the same. That laugh that he'd loved was gone forever, the beauty of her smile, the life living behind her eyes. It was unbearable… just once, he wanted to hold her in his arms, just one last time, as she let out the fear and sadness she all too often kept inside.

{And I keep your photograph, I know it serves me well
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain}

A black-haired girl stared down at a picture of all six of them, staring in particular at one figure. He was smiling so tenderly in that picture you might believe it was a different person, but she knew it was him. She traced his face, stared into those enigmatic blue-green eyes… it helped with the heartache, a little, but not nearly enough. She'd give anything to hug him again, to make sure, with her own two eyes and own two hands, that it wasn't all just a wonderful dream, lift him out of that dark cloud that hung over him and watch him smile that tentative, tender smile that every so often crept out of hiding.

{Because I'm broken when I'm lonesome
And I don't feel right when you've gone away}

He set down his weapon and picked up his towel, feeling more lonely than he'd felt in… a long time. His friends had returned from the end of his last journey with him, and then there was the new journey, and… her… and now all of a sudden friends just didn't seem like enough. He felt empty without her presence, her ever-present laughter, the joy and pain she carried, all of it had become so familiar and so dear that having it taken away felt like having a piece of his heart torn out. He didn't even have the refuge of darkness anymore – if he faded, she wouldn't be able to deal with it. He laughed sadly, shaking his head… even in his emptiness, he'd rather suffer an eternity of pain than let her down even once.

Far away, she put his picture face-down on a table and tried to go to sleep, but she couldn't. She was too hollow without him, too scared of how strongly she felt. It was like she just couldn't be herself when he wasn't there. Vainly, she reached for his presence, but he was literally worlds away… she wondered to herself if, without hers, he'd find someone else, someone… better. He'd left to go home… what if 'home' was better than her? She tossed and turned throughout the night.

{You've gone away, you don't feel me here anymore}


A year passes. Many battles are won and lost, many lives are snuffed and rekindled…


{The worst is over now and we can breathe again
I wanna hold you high, you steal my pain away}

Two figures stood in the aftermath of a battle being repaired, smiling. He lifted her into the air and twirled her around, letting her come back down into his embrace, and she felt all the troubles of the War melt away. They were finally free.

Still, the ship waiting behind him was an ominous déjà vu, and she held his jacket tightly as if to keep him from leaving.

"I'm sad…" she began, looking away.

"Sad?" he asked, confused. "Why?"

She still didn't meet his eyes, knowing he probably guessed. "Because… you have to go…" She sighed, then yelled. "Why does this always have to happen? I… I wanna be with you, and this time, I'm not sure if you'll ever be coming back… what if I never see you again? Life isn't fair, why do we always have to be apart…!?" Tears leaked down her face as she gripped what she held of his jacket in clenched fists, burying her face in his chest. He held her through the tirade, the smiled down at her, that tender, sweet smile of his that so rarely came out.

"Hon… I'm not leaving this time," he told her softly.

She looked up at him with a sniffle. "Huh?"

He lifted her face in one hand. "I told you… I'm not leaving."

"B-but… why? Don't you want to go back to the islands? Your friends?"

{There's so much left to learn and no one left to fight
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain}

He shook his head. "I want to get to know your world, your home. I've only ever seen it during war, during missions… I want to know what it's like to live life the way you do. There's so much here to learn, now that the fighting is over; I want to be here to live that with you. Also… I kind of found out last time that I can't live without you. You're a vital part of me now, for better or worse."

She looked up at him, tears flowing freely. She whispered his name and he held her tighter.

"I want to be there when times are rough, to help you through those days where you just can't make it on your own. I want to experince joy with you, and sadness… and take that sadness away, so you can feel the joy that much more."

She smiled up at him and nodded.

{Because I'm broken when I'm open
And I don't feel I'm strong enough}

"Also… without you, I'm just not me. I want you here for myself… since I've opened my heart up to you, I'm more vulnerable, but it's a good thing, in some ways… I'm more open, but at the same time, more dependant. And… I'm just not strong enough to handle leaving you again… I…"

She placed a finger to his lips.

"I know… exactly what you mean."

She looked away. "I was… so lonely when you left, I couldn't breathe. I felt lost without you, unable to be who or what I was. Yeah, I got over it… but at the same time, do you ever really get over that? I knew that the answer was 'no' when I saw you again. At that moment, I realized everything that had been missing from my life without you there. It was as though you'd taken a part of me with you when you left… so I'm glad you're staying. There's no need to justify yourself."

{Because I'm broken when I'm lonesome
And I don't feel right when you've gone away}

She looked up into his eyes. All the things that had passed between them, from meeting, to the first journey, to parting, to meeting again, and the War, and losing her memory… all of it flashed through her mind, reflected in those deep, ice-blue pools.

{Because I'm broken when I'm open
And I don't feel like I am strong enough
'Cause I'm broken when I'm lonesome
And I don't feel right when you're gone away}

She set aside the fear, and pain, and sadness, and knew she saw the future there as well. There was no need for words as she reached up, took his head in her hands, and kissed him.

-Fin-