A/N: The story's title as I had it on Livejournal is "(I've Been Having These) Weird Thoughts Lately," but as I've learned before, it doesn't work as well on fanfiction.
This story was written for my contribution for the LJ comm, help_haiti, and was written for the winning bidder. It's set after KH2, it's Roxas/Sora, and her prompt was "peace, finally."
And my first Roxas/Sora, so be gentle? Spoilers for 358/2 Days!
:D I hope you enjoy it!
Sora wakes up in a white room. He tries to sit up, but his hands are tied to the bed. Scowling, he lifts his head to see what is going on, and from maybe a few feet away, a familiar blond watches curiously.
"Who are you?" Sora asks, tugging against the restraints. "Whoever you are, let me go!"
The blond, with really familiar blue eyes, stands and walks up to the bed. Or gurney? Sora had no idea where he is. "I'm trying to protect you," the blond says softly, threading a hand through Sora's hair. Sora yanks out of his grasp and the blond lets him. "That's all."
"From what?!" Sora shouts. The blond looks like he is about to respond, but then everything goes black.
Sora jerks awake in what looks like his own room, his eyes wide as he fumbles for the light. The light floods the room and burns his eyes, and when he finally grabs his cell phone, he can only glare at it. The blond - whoever he is - was obviously about to tell him something important, and his phone had waken him up.
He doesn't even know how to use it -- "1 txt." What in the world is a "txt", and why would he care about it? Frustrated, he throws the phone across the room, falling back onto the pillows.
After twisting and turning for over a half hour, Sora gives up on the pretense of sleep, and rolls out of bed, stepping into his shoes. He quickly walks out of his room, bypassing his phone without glance, and leaves his room. Even without his phone, his parents will know where he is. It's where he always goes.
Besides, even if he's sleepy and cranky, no one else deserves to be woken up at one on a Friday morning.
As quietly as he can - though with his shoes, it's not that quiet - his grabs a pair of fingerless gloves off the kitchen counter and slips out the door, heading towards to the docks.
Maybe an hour passes, but Sora doesn't notice, his Keyblade slashing at invisible enemies. He stops, huffing a bit (he's gotten out of shape in the last few months) and he hears it -- the parting of water, a skilled swimmer approaching Paopu Island, trying to be as quiet as he can be.
Sora rolls his eyes and gives a small smile, crouching by the stairs and holding his Keyblade at the ready. "You're not that sneaky, Riku."
The person currently climbing the ladder pauses, laughs, and accepts the hand Sora is holding out. "No, I am," Riku says, shaking his head. "You've gotten observant recently."
Sora laughs and pulls Riku up, lowering his Keyblade in his other hand. He approaches the Paopu tree silently, knowing that Riku is just behind him. "I'm not losing my mind," he says softly, clenching the Keyblade in his hand tightly. "I just…"
Riku jumps onto the tree's leaning branch, glancing back to Sora. "You saved the worlds twice over, Sora. You need to relax."
Sora leans over the branch, scowling. "I can't relax. As long as I have this –" he doesn't raise his Keyblade, but Riku has to know by now what Sora is talking about, "—I have to keep fighting. Keep in shape. In case someone needs my help."
"Sora…" Riku sighs and shakes his head. "You know that if you need to talk to someone or, heck, spar with someone, I'll be here." He smirks and adds, "I can still kick your ass any day of the week."
Sora sends his Keyblade away, forcing himself to smile to Riku. He knows that Riku's just being nice – he's been too busy recently with arguing with his parents that he, in fact, is not crazy and didn't run away from home to deal with Sora's problems. So Sora keeps the smile on his face and vows to not tell his best friend about the dreams.
He'll find out about the blond-haired blue-eyed boy himself.
When Sora opens his eyes, he's in the same room as before, but this time he's in a chair. He leaps up, expecting to be bound to the chair by some restraints, and when he's not, he tries to summon his Keyblade. Nothing happens, and he's suddenly nervous. "Who are you?" he shouts to the empty room. "I know you're in here!"
The room seems to chuckle and Sora knows he's losing his mind. There's a movement in the corner of his eye and he spins around just in time to see the blond approach him from the side. He stops him and stumbles, almost tripping over his feet.
The blond smiles and steps back, offering him a hand. Normally, Sora would take it, but he hasn't been feeling all too nice lately. "Who are you?" he asks again, hopping to his feet by his own accord.
The blond frowns and steps away. "Sora, listen. You gave me what I wanted and now I'm trying to do the same. You should want to be normal, to be with your friends…"
"Of course I do!" Sora exclaims, about a second away from throttling the boy. If he doesn't say who he is right now…
"No." The blond shakes his head. "No, you should want that, but you want adventure. You're…" He laughs, running a hand through his hair. Sora notes that the blond's unruly spikes are similar to his. "You're craving it. You're desperate for it."
"There's nothing wrong with wanting adventure," Sora counters, ignoring the fact that he does want it. That the thrill for another chance to save the world makes him shaky at times.
"Sure, if you hadn't gone through two intense years." The blond approaches him almost cautiously. Sora stumbles, trips back into the chair he jumped out before hand. The boy kneels down and cups Sora's face in his hand. Sora freezes and the boy smiles slightly. "You need to rest, Sora," the boy says, his voice near a whisper. "You think that everyone needs you to save them, but the worlds are alright. We're not trying to destroy the worlds anymore. The Heartless aren't trying to either. You need to be a kid again."
Sora wants to pull out of the blond's grasp, but something about the boy, maybe his voice or maybe his eyes, are so familiar. "What do you know about me?" Sora settles for asking, his voice low.
The boy chuckles and releases Sora's face, almost fading away. "Everything, Sora," he says with a smile. "I'm your Nobody."
"Nobod--?" he asks, but the room disappears again.
When something is thrown at his window at about three in the afternoon, Sora tucks the book he'd been reading under his pillow and opens the window. Riku raises his eyebrow and tumbles into his room. "You skipped school today."
"Stayed out late," Sora says with a wide smile plastered on his face. "I didn't feel so well after last night."
Riku narrows his eyes. "Don't lie to me." When Sora's smile falters, Riku throws his hands up in the air. "What's gotten into you? You've been zoning out for the past couple of weeks. And your late night adventures…? Sora, you've gotten farther and farther from Kairi, me… everyone!"
Sora turns away, guilty. "No one said anything to me."
"That's because they can't find you to say anything!" Riku exclaims, knocking Sora's pillow off the bed, as though he was restraining himself from actually hitting Sora. His pillow tumbles away and Sora dives for what was under it; Riku is faster. "What's this?" he asks, thumbing through the pages. "Jiminy's Journal?"
Sora makes a grab for the book, but Riku holds it over his head. "And you've been looking up Roxas, I see," he says, leaning out of Sora's reach. "You've even highlighted parts of it."
"He's my Nobody!" Sora says, trying to reach Riku's arms. "And I know nothing about him!"
Riku snorts and drops the book for Sora, who barely catches it. "Good. He was a grade A jerk."
With the book securely in his arms, Sora holds it close. "Axel didn't think so. He said something like..."
"'He made me feel like I had a heart,' we know Sora," Riku says, exhausted. "You've told the story before. And just because a thing without a heart feels like he does doesn't make Roxas any kinder."
"How would you know?!" Sora asks, thumbing through the book. "You've…"
Riku almost rips the book out of Sora's hand. Sora glances up, ready to counter with a really pissed off diatribe, but when he sees Riku's eyes almost flashing in anger, he tries not to shrink away. "I've fought him. I know a lot about him." He tosses the book onto the bed and walks toward the window. "I know a lot about you."
"I'm not arguing about that—" Sora tries, but Riku shakes his head.
"That's not what I mean. I mean…" Riku inhales, exhales, and slumps over. "Ask Roxas if he remembers Xion. Ask him if the name triggers anything."
"Xion?" Sora repeats, grabbing Riku's arm. "Who is he? And Roxas hasn't done anything to me. He gave up himself, his friends, to let me become myself again! What's wrong with that?"
"What's he asking you for Sora?" Riku asks softly, sounding defeated. "Is he asking for a run of your body? Is he convincing you to let him see the outside world before he "disappears for good"?"
Sora is quiet for a moment and Riku snorts. "I figured as much," he says, about to climb out of the window.
Sora grabs his arm before Riku's completely leaves. "He wants me to rest," Sora says softly, gently tugging on Riku's arm. He knows it's not enough to make Riku stay, but he's still going to try. "He says I'm trying to hard to stay the hero, when I should rest."
Riku goes quiet, climbing back into the room. "He did?" he asks, his voice no louder than a whisper. Sora nods and Riku falls to his knees, hugging Sora around the middle.
Sora flushes, his face turning a bright red as he tries to pry Riku off. "What the heck, Riku!" He hears something that sounds like laughing and when he glances down, he realizes Riku's crying all over him. Sora's slightly embarrassed, but Riku is his best friend and he's not going to just shove Riku away.
"All of us at school, your family, Kairi, me," Riku starts, his voice cracking. Normally Sora would crack a joke (no pun intended), but he doesn't. "If that jerk of a Nobody is actually making you realize that you deserve peace, then…" He glances up to Sora, and Sora almost wants to look away. Raw emotion is all but pouring from Riku and the look makes him feel uncomfortable.
He suddenly remembers Roxas's hands on his face.
Dropping to his knees, Sora hugs his best friend close. "Yeah, maybe I just wanted to be a hero a little longer," Sora admits, smiling slightly. Riku gives a watery laugh and Sora jostles him. "At least I'm admitting it. So please shut up."
"You better start leaving your house again," Riku scolds. "And not just to train to fight monsters you don't have to fight ever again."
"I will," Sora promises, rubbing soothing circles on Riku's back. He wonders if his realization that he has been an idiot will stop the dreams, but at the moment, he can't bring himself to care. He pulls Riku closer and smiles into his shoulder. "I promise."
The dreams don't stop.
His eyes flicker open and Kairi is staring at him. His eyes widen and the blur of his sight disappears, revealing that either Kairi has cut her hair and dyed it… or that's not Kairi. He quickly thinks back to what Riku was saying yesterday (before all his babbling set in, that is), and offered up a quiet, "Xion?"
When the girl nods, he grimaces. Well, Xion didn't really sound like a boy's name. Or a girl's name. "Who are you?"
"Your… I'm your…" She frowns, threading her fingers together. He stands up from the chair he was sitting in and takes a step to approach her. She steps back in response. "Oh no no no. I… I don't… I don't want to touch you."
Sora blinks and she smiles. "I… this is Roxas's area in your heart. I'm just visiting. And I don't want to mess it up."
"Okaaay," Sora says, stepping back. He'll play by her rules. "So… what are you?" His eyes screw up in confusion. "An Organization member? You have an x in your name…"
She frowns. "Um. I am you."
Sora blinks. "What?"
Xion crosses her arms, drumming her fingers on her sleeve. "I guess I could show you. Roxas said it might freak you out, but…"
A moment later, the white room has been replaced by the clock tower in Twilight Town. Sora gasps, and holds onto a ledge, glad he was not closer to an edge when the room changed. "This is what I look like when I'm not under Roxas's influence."
Sora blinks, glances around for the dark haired Kairi, and instead sees himself approaching, almost cautiously. "…What?" is all Sora can muster, and the version of himself – Xion will work, he supposes – wrings his (her?) fingers and grimaces.
"I've… obviously, since I am you, I've learned so much about you," Xion says, brushing a lock of hair from her face. But because it's his hair and his face, his eyes only widen. "And … you're so strong. Strong in ways I couldn't be. And I just wish that I could be like that." She approaches the edge of the clock tower, leaning over. "You have so many strong people behind you. You are…" She blinks and glances up to him. Sora is slightly creeped out by having himself staring up at… well, him. "You are really brave."
"Roxas has to remember you," Sora says, still standing by the corner of the clock tower. She emphasized that he shouldn't be near her before, and he's not going to argue now. "And if Roxas did, obviously Axel has to as well—" He cuts off. Axel isn't really… in the position to remember anymore.
She smiles, walking towards him. He stays smooshed at the corner, hoping she doesn't get closer. "Roxas doesn't care about me – he cares about you. It's because I am you that he cares anything about me." She reaches her hands up, about to cup his face, and he squeezes his eyes shut. "Sora, it's alright. It's just you."
He opens his eye. She smiles and gently pushes him over the edge of the clock tower.
As he falls, he vaguely remembers not being anywhere near the edge, but he simply closes his eyes.
"She's really cryptic, isn't she?"
Sora blinks his eyes open, yawning wide. The birds are chirping, the sun is bright in the sky… and Roxas is sitting in his room. His room, not that white place of creepiness that had been haunting his dreams of late. Sora shoots up in bed and Roxas shakes his head.
"I didn't think she'd pop up, but," he stands, moving away from the chair across the room from Sora. "Riku mentioned her and I remember her and well, you've met her. She's not so bad."
Sora moves to get out of bed and Roxas freezes. "Everyone has said you've tried to protect me. Is that true?"
Roxas looks torn, like he wants to roll his eyes or leave. Sora grins and approaches him. Roxas shrugs helplessly. "I'm a part of you," he says softly, as Sora steps in his personal space. "If you're not happy, then no part of you is."
Sora nods as though he understands this – he doesn't – and raises an eyebrow. "Why was your room all white then?" He asks.
Roxas shakes his head, trying not to smile. "Because my whole focus is to make you happy. I didn't have time to think of other things."
Moving even closer – close enough that they're basically on top of each other – Sora grins as well. "You should," he says, leaning over that last quarter of a centimeter and pressing his lips to Roxas's.
Neither of them moves for a long moment, but then Roxas gives a contented sort of sigh, threads his hands through Sora's hair, and kisses him back intensely. Almost too intensely, Sora thinks, as Roxas maneuvers him back to the bed and, once they're on it, kisses his way down Sora's neck.
This can't be real, Sora thinks, and Roxas pauses, before leaning up to kiss Sora's forehead and pulls back. He climbs off the bed and presses a hand to Sora's shoulder when he tries to move.
"It's not," he says, and suddenly Sora opens his eyes to an empty room.
The dreams stop.
Sora never hears from Roxas again. Kairi mentions that any trace of Naminé – such as her newly acquired art skills – has vanished. Riku only glances over at Sora, and he shrugs before closing his eyes.
He may never talk to Roxas again, but he's not going to forget his message. Not for a good long while.
When Riku mentions offhandly that a group of friends are getting together to hang out over the weekend, Sora glances at his keyblade's keychain, smiles, and takes him up on the offer.