This is the final chapter.

Kingdom Hearts: For True Story's true ending.

Enjoy...and thank you all for reading. (I actually thought you'd HATE the ending to the last chapter, so it was a relief to wake up to all those nice reviews. Thanks! I should've aimed for 175 to add more suspense, but...HERE IT IS!)

Chapter Twenty-Three: Hearts In Waiting

How long had he been waiting? Who knows? To him, he had all the time he'd ever need. It's not like he'd care how long he'd have to wait anymore. It was already over for him from the start. He'd been tricked his whole life, or rather, half-life. Now all he needed was to make sure the Keyblade's Chosen was all he was cracked up to be. The last thing he wanted was to see Organization XIII win, but he knew he couldn't face them alone. If he could lose to Riku-Ansem, then there would be no doubt Organization XIII would finish him off, even with the loss of the Castle Oblivion team, along with the recent losses of Demyx, Xaldin, and Axel.

Axel.

His best friend.

A man in a black cloak stood atop the Memory's Skyscraper, clenching Oblivion and Oathkeeper together tightly. The sky, as it was always, was raining and thundering, lightning flashing within the dark clouds, barely illuminating their outlines. The man just looked to the sky, wondering if there really was a blue sky behind the black clouds.

Or maybe it was just space.

Maybe it just darkness.

Who knows? Probably the Organization, but like they'd ever tell him.

He was just a Nobody.

Lucky Number XIII, Marluxia called him. The man just gripped both blades tighter as he remembered his first couple of missions with the Organization.

"13 is no lucky number," the man spat out. "You should know that by now, Xemnas."

Continuing to look down upon the Dark City, the man saw a figure run across the base of the Memory's Skyscraper at high speeds. The man recognized him as the King, except he had on red-and-yellow clothing. The King was dashing past the Skyscraper, heading towards the Organization's Castle That Never Was. The man just looked away in disgust whenever the Castle got into his field of vision.

He never knew he could despise the color white so much.

Then again, it wasn't the paintjob of that dreary castle that mocked him. It was the inhabitants. Prefarably Xemnas and Sai"X.

The man flipped his hood back, revealing Roxas's face. Roxas just looked forwards at the dark horizon, taking the moment to think about something he had never thought about before. The stability of The World That Never Was.

"Is this world just doomed to fade like all Nobodies?" Roxas wondered out loud. He knew no one could hear him, so why bother thinking? "What's out there...beyond this city? Just more empty dark houses? Or maybe some fields? Are those fields storm-ravaged and water-logged like the rest of the city?"

Roxas just continued to stare off into the dark horizon, not even seeing a glimmer of light. "Or do Heartless not even we know about roam those plains?" Roxas wondered. Roxas looked downwards at the pavement below the Memory's Skyscraper, and he saw three beings walking across the pavement slowly. Roxas knew all three of them, although none of them knew him. Roxas did see walking behind the leader Donald and Goofy, but he didn't care. Those two were not his target. It was the leader itself he was after.

Sora, the Keyblade's Chosen. Roxas took note that instead of the usual red clothes he'd found him in at Twilight Town's mansion, this time he was wearing black clothing with yellow straps.

How Roxas loathed the color black as well.

Roxas took obvious note that Sora had become much more powerful; the whispering rumors he heard mere Dusks exchange with each other here in the Dark City must be true. Sora stopped and looked up at the large skyscraper, obviously sensing Roxas.

Or maybe it was just because the storm had let up and Kingdom Hearts was visible now.

Either way, it was time to figure out the last piece of information Roxas needed to know. Roxas flipped back up his hood and dismissed his Keyblades, before opening a dark portal behind him. It was time to finally test this so-called Keyblade Master's worth.


Sora, Donald, and Goofy all stood on the concrete ground, looking up past the leaving storm clouds to see Kingdom Hearts's glow for the first time. However, to them, Kingdom Hearts was just a moon to them; after all, they had no idea what it was...yet. Sora took a couple steps forward, ready to follow the King and end the threat of Organization XIII forever, when a shout from Donald behind him made him stop.

"SORA!" Donald shouted. Sora turned around immdiately, and he saw two Samurai Nobodies standing in front of Donald and Goofy, with their swords blocking their path.

"Donald! Goofy!" Sora shouted. Sora tried to run to them, but the all-too-familiar sound of a dark portal appearing stopped him. Sora turned around, and saw (unbeknowst to him) Roxas walk out of the dark portal.

(Cue The Other Promise.)

Without so much as a cocky fighting line, Roxas summoned his Oblivion Keyblade, having it form in his right hand out of darkness instantly. Sora was suprised as he saw this, his jaw gaping.

"A...Keyblade!?" Sora shouted, amazed. Roxas took no time in charging towards Sora, about to slash downwards to strike him down. Sora got his own Keyblade up, and he blocked against the sudden attack. Roxas stared down at Sora, both of them now losing any ground, whenever a short flash of light appeared around the two fighters. Roxas jumped backwards as both he and Sora materialized within Sora's Station of Awakening. Sora was shocked at the sudden change in scenery; now he was standing on mere glass, surrounded by an endless dark abyss, with an Organization member standing in his way to destroy him.

What Roxas saw was just a test trial to see if Sora was all he was cracked up to be. Sora got his Keyblade ready, but Roxas made the first move by spinning his blades. Sora stood ready for combat, whenever Roxas threw out his two Keyblades in a spinning motion going around him that knocked Sora backwards.

"TAKE THAT!" Roxas shouted. Sora then tried to slice at Roxas, but Roxas merely turned into an illusion and moved out of the way. Sora went to his current position and tried to attack again, but Roxas jumped into the air. Sora looked up, only to see Roxas come down at him from directly above, spinning his Keyblades as he did so. Sora was blasted backwards, but he spun in mid-air and regained balance. Sora, damaged from the attack, cast a Cure spell on himself as Roxas became a mirage; Roxas flew right behind Sora and tried to do his first, spinning circle blade attack. Sora, however, countered and began unleashing his own combination attack on Roxas, sending him into the air. Sora continued with his combo attacks, hitting Roxas mercilessly, until he countered with his charging aerial spin blade attack. Sora dodged the attack, but was lightly damaged from getting sliced a tiny bit on the left side of his body. Sora spun back upwards and tried to attack Roxas, but Roxas turned into another illusion, came behind Sora, jumped upwards, and dashed downwards with his spinning blade attack.

"Who is this guy!?" Sora mentally shouted, as he ran backwards to get some distance. Roxas charged at him in his illusion form again, but this time Sora turned around and tried to slice at him.

Both could feel their hearts beating as they got closer to each other.

Their Keyblades were about to clash.

Roxas made the wrong move, however, as he attacked too early; Sora beat him into the air with a single swipe, and then he stuck his hand into the air.

"GIVE ME STRENGTH!" Sora shouted. Immdiately, Roxas saw both his Oblivion and Oathkeeper Keyblades fly down to Sora, forming a sort of combination sword with Oblivion facing one way and Oathkeeper facing the other. Roxas landed on the ground, and Sora unleashed his own standard striking attacks, with Roxas's own Keyblades flying at Roxas at lightspeed. Roxas was mercilessly bashed around like a rag doll. Roxas made several columns of light appear around him, before launching them at Sora to try and push him back. This manuever worked, as Sora was blasted backwards by the multiple columns of light. Sora cast a second Cure spell on himself to keep in the game, but now the columns of light appeared to be trapping him, preventing him from a straight direct attack to Roxas. Roxas turned illusory again and appeared behind Sora, before using the columns of light to repel Sora. However, Sora took his chances and broke through the columns sucessfully, before unleashing another three-Keyblade combination attack on Roxas, launching him into the air again. Sora tried to do a second combo in mid-air, but Roxas quickly landed and sent his columns of light flying in all directions. Sora was blasted back into the ground, still wielding Roxas's own Keyblades.

"Man, this guy is tough!" Sora angrily noted, as Roxas continued to shoot columns of light at Sora from his position. Sora dodged this attack, but now more columns of light began appearing around Sora, trying to entrap him. Sora ran out of the way as fast as he could, while Roxas turned into an illusion and tried to attack Roxas from behind while Sora was distracted with the columns of light.

"It's over!" Sora shouted, as he turned around, and began attacking Roxas with the three Keyblades. Roxas tried to move back, but he was caught in the frenzy of Keyblades and was slashed at repeatedly with all three Keyblades at once.

Strike after strike.

Blow after blow.

Enduring the pain as if it was nothing.

"I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!" Roxas mentally shouted. Roxas kicked Sora away before reclaiming both of his Keyblades again. Roxas and Sora landed on seperate sides of the battlefield on the station, before they both charged at each other. Their Keyblades clashed in the center of the station, with neither one of them giving in.

"Who...who are you!?" Sora desperately asked. Roxas just continued to push back, before responding in a dark tone.

"Someone from the dark," Roxas answered. Both Roxas and Sora jumped back, as their current stalemate proved to be indecisive for the both of them. Roxas slowly stood up as a thought crossed Sora's mind at that moment.

A Keyblade wielder?

Someone from the dark...?

"You can't be...Riku?" Sora asked, hoping he was everything but that. Roxas, unknown to Sora, smirked within his dark hood, before looking slightly downwards at his Oathkeeper Keyblade.

"Riku? I defeated a Riku once..." Roxas revealed. That was definitely NOT what Sora wanted to hear at all, due to Sora's fist clenching up at that moment.

"What?" Sora asked, more suprised than scared. Sora should be scared however; if it took him that long to beat down Roxas, he would have no chance against Xemnas! Roxas just got his Keyblades into a battle stance, before speaking again, his voice slightly laced with curiosity.

"Tell me...tell me why he picked you!" Roxas demanded, before charging at Sora. Roxas's Keyblades dragged across the glass of the station, creating sparks at the tips clashed with the glass. Sora jumped backwards as he missed one slice from Roxas, before he used his own Keyblade to defend against another attack. Roxas tried to slash downwards at Sora with his Oblivion Keyblade, but Sora slammed his own Keyblade downwards into the Oblivion Keyblade, getting it stuck in the ground. Roxas tried to pull it free, but Sora kept his grip on his own Keyblade firm, keeping Oblivion stuck in the ground as it did so. Roxas then jumped into the air, with both his Keyblades, and fell behind Sora, who was trying to figure out how Roxas did that so effortlessly. While Sora was stunned, Roxas tried to cut at him, but Sora jumped into the air like Roxas.

"HA!" Sora grunted, getting ready to attack Roxas again. Roxas defended himself by blocking Sora's attack and sending him into the air, before he jumped into the air as well. Sora ended up upside-down as he saw Roxas charge at him again. Time seemed to slow down as the two got close to clashing. Whenever their Keyblades clashed, not one of them gave up an inch of their ground, despite them being in mid-air, and despite Roxas having the advantage of velocity from his jump. Roxas then pushed Sora to the ground, but Sora got his footing quickly, with no scratches on him. Roxas floated in the air effortlessly, looking down upon Sora on his own heart's station.

It was then he realized he just found the answer to his own question.

Where Sora was standing was between four light blue circle of his four closest friends.

The top left one was Goofy.

The top right contained Donald.

The bottom left had the smirking, but confident face of Riku.

And the bottom right one contained an image of Xion.

"No...not Xion..." Roxas thought. "...the other girl...Kairi..."

"I see. That's why," Roxas uttered. Sora just assumed Roxas was about to strike again, and he gripped his own Keyblade in a defensive stance, ready to counterattack, should Roxas strike inevitably again. Roxas dropped down quickly and slashed at Sora, but Sora jumped backwards, making the attack null and void. Roxas flew forwards, spinning his Keyblades like saws, making Sora continue to spin and fall back.

Perfect.

Roxas then managed to catch Sora off-guard, and he began clashing his Keyblades down upon Sora. Sora stuck up his lone Keyblade to defend against the onslaught of attacks. Roxas continued bringing down the stream of strikes, constantly hacking and slashing. Sora didn't give up his guard...but soon enough, he fell to one knee in exhaustion. Roxas then sliced his Oathkeeper Keyblade to the left, throwing Sora's own Keyblade out of his hands. Sora's Keyblade skittered across the ground of the station, landing somewhere in the middle. Sora, gawking, scrambled to his feet and charged for the blade, but Roxas stuck down Oathkeeper right inside the handle of Sora's Keyblade, making Sora skid to a halt on his own knees. Roxas pointed Oblivion at the unarmed Sora, the blade pointing directly at Sora's face. Sora looked on at him in disdain.

This man couldn't win!

Not when Riku, Kairi, and the worlds were on the line!

Sora looked down in semi-defeat, which was enough for Roxas. Roxas smirked under his hood, as he saw Sora helplessly reach for his Keyblade. Instantly, Sora's Keyblade disappeared. Roxas looked down, gawking himself.

"What!?" Roxas shouted. That lapse of concentration made it all for Sora, as he resummoned his own Keyblade in hand and sliced downwards, effectly slashing Roxas right down the left shoulderblade directly down to his left thigh. That large gash wasn't evident to Sora, thanks to his black cloak, but Roxas could feel the pain from the hit. Roxas stood there, as he dropped both his Keyblades in that instant; both of them disappeared as they hit the ground.

Sora...had won.

But, suprisingly, Roxas wasn't mad. In fact, he even smiled a bit as he staggered forwards, past Sora. As Roxas fell forwards past Sora, a bright flash overcame itself in Roxas's eyes. Even though the vision he saw was only for a split second, he would remember it for the rest of his existance...which probably wouldn't be pretty long anyway.


Roxas first found himself standing outside the mansion in Twilight Town. He was wearing his street clothes, and he recognized this scene in time instantly. This was his first memory. The time has was "born." In front of him, a dark portal opened, with a figure walking out to him. The figure looked down at Roxas, before giving off something that felt close to a smile.

"You seek answers...I can give you purpose..." the man chuckled, waving his hand in front of Roxas. Several, see-through ethereal letters appeared, spelling out the word "SORA." The man waved his hand again, and the words began spinning in a bright blue halo around Roxas. Before long, the figure stuck his hand out, and a golden ethereal see-through "X" appeared in the scrambling of words, forming out the words "ROXAS." Roxas looked up, before recognizing his new name. Or rather, since this was his memory, his old name.

"Roxas..." Roxas uttered. Looking up, Roxas saw the grinning face and tiger-orange eyes of Xemnas.

"That is right. The new you," Xemnas answered.


Roxas then found himself sitting on the side of the clock tower in Twilight Town, apparently deep in thought.

"So...this is how it ends for me...fitting..." Roxas thought. However, a voice spoke to him that snapped him out of his trance.

"Finally woke up?" Axel sarcastically asked. Roxas, gasping out of suprise, looked to his right and saw Axel standing erect on the edge of the station tower.

"Axel!" Roxas shouted. Both he and Roxas kept silent, as Axel watched the sunset in the horizon of Twilight Town. Roxas turned to see the sunset as well, continuing to go back into his train of thought.

"Nope...maybe you're going back to sleep..." Axel sighed, realizing Roxas was fading away in the real world. "Soon I won't even be able to talk to your consciousness like this."

Roxas looked down at his two feet, sad...yet strangely happy and accepting of his fate. "I...I'm going back to how I was," Roxas realized. Axel then sat down next to Roxas, listening intently.

"I've thought about it a lot. Namine said the same thing," Roxas mentioned.

"Roxas," Axel spoke up. "You have a heart, don't you? While Namine and I...we don't really have hearts, do we?"

Roxas looked back down at his feet, unsure. "I...I don't know either," Roxas answered. Axel looked back to his feet, a bit disappointed.

"I guess not..." Axel sighed.

"But," Roxas continued. "...the heart's not something you can see. I've started wondering whether it's something you can't feel either...if so, then...nah, never mind."

"Hm? What're you getting at?" Axel chuckled, a small smirk coming across his face. Roxas lifted his head slowly, smiling a bit as he did so as he looked to the sunsetting horizon, feeling...happiness, even in his final hour existing as something else.

"I'm sure Sora'll find the answer," Roxas pointed out. "Because he's me."

Axel released a small, yet audible, chuckle, as his head turned away from Roxas and back to the sunset. "Yep, that's true," Axel agreed. Roxas looked back down at his feet again, until something caught his eye. Looking back up, Roxas saw Axel holding two ice cream bars in both of his hands. Axel handed one over to Roxas, whom smiled and took it from him. Both of them began eating the ice cream one last time.

"Hehe...to think something so insignificant...could mean so much...even to a Nobody like myself," Roxas thought. "Strange...I have this feeling that we used to do this with someone else...no. We did. Xion...does Axel remember her? ...probably, but it'd be rude to ask. After all, it wouldn't matter at this point anyway..."

"This really takes me back," Axel started up again. "Do you remember? We first met the day you got your new name. And then we watched the sunset from up here."

"Yeah," Roxas answered. "This is where I came from. Everyone...Hayner, Pence, Olette...I hope they're okay."

"You should go and see them again, looking for your answer," Axel suggested. Roxas chuckled.

"Yeah...so, I have to go," Roxas mentioned, now with confidence and...pride? "Sora's waiting for me."

Axel sighed. "Yeah, I guess he is..." Axel took a bite of his ice cream as he did so, trying to change the subject. "Woah, this ice-cream really IS salty!"

Roxas and Axel sat there, taking in the last view of the sunset together. "So...he can't remember Xion...ah, well. She's still our friend. And she DID say she was going to return to Sora...who knows? Maybe I'll meet her there. And then I can introduce her to Namine!" Roxas happily thought. Roxas, now seeing a bright light appear around him and Axel, turned to Axel, smiling.

"See you, Axel," Roxas chuckled, as the light began to grow brighter.

"See ya, partner," Axel sadly, yet surely, mentioned. As the light grew brighter, a single tear dropped to the concrete of the station's ledge, but its previous host tearduct would forever go unknown.


Roxas staggered past Sora in his mind station, his hood flipping backwards as it did so. Sora turned around to face the man in the cloak, as Roxas regained his balance and stood erect. The light began to shine around the station, signaling Sora would awaken soon. Sora never did get a clear look at Roxas's face, but Roxas knew all too well Sora shouldn't have to care. He'll probably think this battle was some sort of dream in a moment anyway, since Sora was close to returning back to the Memory's Skyscraper in a few seconds. Roxas turned his head slowly to Sora, revealing half of his face to Sora. Sora stood there, confused, as Roxas smiled.

"I know you're in there somewhere Xion. Someday we'll meet. Hopefully," Roxas mentally chuckled. "But for now, have a good time. Be sure to give Sai"X a hard smack in the face for me."

As Sora and Roxas made eye contact for the brief amount of time they had, Roxas just smiled and uttered his last few words to Sora before he disappeared forever.

"You make a good other."


Sora was let out back at the Memory's Skyscraper again, staring straight in the direction he was facing before Roxas appeared to battle him.

"You make a good other...?" Sora asked himself, curious. Donald and Goofy, unharmed, walked up to Sora from behind.

"Are you okay?" Donald asked.

"What...just happened?" Sora asked, wondering himself if he was okay or not.

"Gawrsh, I dunno," Goofy answered. "You just disappeared. Then me and Donald had to fight some Nobodies."

"Oh," Sora sighed. "He said...he defeated Riku..."

"Who said that?" Donald questioned, not beleiving it for a minute.

"That guy. In the black coat," Sora answered, turning back to his friends.

"But nobody can defeat Riku," Donald reminded Sora.

"Y-yeah, you're right," Sora agreed, a bit unsure of what Roxas had meant. Sora then turned to face both Goofy and Donald, instead of just keeping his head twisted to them like an owl.

"The black coat meant Organization XIII," Goofy pointed out. "He must've been trying to trick ya!"

"Yeah, that must be why we didn't see him!" Donald agreed. This stunned Sora with confusion.

"Didn't...see him?" Sora wondered. "Huh?"

"You must be tired, Sora," Donald deducted.

"Come on. Let's just find a way to get into that castle!" Goofy reminded Sora. Donald and Goofy then passed up Sora and began walking towards the pathway the King had previously been on, to head towards the Castle That Never Was. Sora turned and walked with them, but halfway there he stopped. Turning around and looking back at the area he was just at, he tried to see if Roxas was still there.

But, like usual, nothing was there to greet him.

Sora shrugged and turned back, walking with Donald and Goofy to the Castle That Never Was. The storm clouds above the Dark City continued to rumble, but for the first time in their existance, they didn't drop rain.


Inside the Castle That Never Was, several tombstones were seen in the area. All sans for Xemnas's, but he didn't have one.

Xigbar's, Sai"X's, and Luxord's gravestones remained light blue, signaling their continued existance.

Xaldin's, Vexen's, Lexaeus's, Zexion's, Axel's, Demyx's, Marluxia's, and Larxene's gravestones were all a bloody red, signaling their already faded existance.

Yet despite the oddity of what had happened at the Memory's Skyscraper just moments ago, Roxas's tombstone remained blue and bright.

Probably because Roxas and Sora were one and the same, and Sora was still walking.

Or maybe it was because Roxas never really faded at all...maybe he still lives somewhere, planning to go to the beach with Hayner, Pence, and Olette; maybe he still is bullied by Seifer, Fuu, Rai, and Vivi at the Sandlot; maybe he still exists somewhere, deep inside Sora's heart, in a place not even Sora could reach.

But who knows?

After all, who truly cares for a Nobody?

WARNING: RELATIVELY LONG AUTHOR'S NOTE AHEAD

I know its cheating, using a cutscene as a chapter (as well as the battle itself), but I thought THAT'D be the perfect ending for Kingdom Hearts: For True Story.

I hope you all enjoyed this what-if fic. If you want to see more What-If's, check out Sonic X: For True Story, also by me. Thanks to all of you guys, I've grown confident in the fanfiction world, along with these what-if fics.

However, I must give special thanks to several people.

1) First off, special thanks to Tetsuya Nomura and all the people at Square Enix and Disney, for coming up with such a genius RPG that mixed together characters, old and new, quite effortlessly. All I did was make my own story out of the story elements given to me, and it was all thanks to your awesome minds that this was possible.

2) Secondly, I want to give special thanks to the people and staff of itself. I never would've been able to find a way to vent all my anger from the sad ending of Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days if it wasn't for you guys! You all really live up to your motto of "Unleash Your Imagination!" Thank you!

3) Third, I want to give thanks to the musical masterpieces of Yoko Shimomura and the band of Crush 40 for both of your great tunes! The fanfic wouldn't have been half as memorable without lyrics from "Fight The Knight" and "What I'm Made Of," and the classic, lyricless tunes of you, Yoko, helped make this fic even better (even if the reader DIDN'T open a second tab, but whatever. XD)

4) Finally, I want to give a big shout out to all those who reviewed this story, anonymous or not. From the VERY first reviewer (kittie reviewer) to all you constant reviewers (khfangirl, Riku Uzumaki, Slop Doggy, BornFromDarkness, Furryfur, and all others!) out there. You have all given me MAJOR inspiration for the series in more ways than one! I would also like to thank the reviews from a critical eye, such as Abe95's recent review. No matter if the review sounded positive, negative, or (as NinjaSheik always says "COOL~!"), it all helped contribute to the end of Kingdom Hearts: For True Story!

5) DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN, IN ANY WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM, ANY OR ALL MUSICS USED IN THIS FANFICTION, BE THEY WITH OR WITHOUT LYRICS. I DO NOT OWN ROXAS, ORGANIZATION XIII, THE HEARTLESS, THE NOBODIES, THE UNIVERSED, OR ANYTHING ELSE RELATED TO THE KINGDOM HEARTS FRANCHISE IN ANY WAY POSSIBLE. The only things I do own were the OC Replica Nobodies introduced in Chapter Four. Also, I don't own Abinixia. She's khfangirl's property...and apparently Zexion's property too. XD

Well...I don't beleive it. It's finally over. All of it. And to think, the original plot had Ansem as the final villain...amazing how things can change quickly and unexpectedly.

Anyways, tell me your favorite moments! Your best jokes (they're there, they're just subtle)! Your favorite villains! Favorite moves! Anything you beleived worth mentioning in the review!

As of right now, this story has reached over 12,000 HITS. OH EM GEE. This is officially my best story ever written. I just hope you all, whenever you're on the FF site years from now, you come back and find this and read it again, just to reminisce.

Because stuff like this, no matter HOW memorable, can fade from memory as simple as that.

And now...the final time I will ask you this...(takes in deep breath)...

REVIEW! And thank you for reading Kingdom Hearts: For True Story!

(you get 10,000 munny XD)