He was falling.
She watched him tumble down the cliff side with fear in her wide eyes. A loud crack echoed throughout the newly created ravine and she shuddered as she saw the tip of his keyblade break off from its hilt. Sure, the keyblade could be mended or replaced, but it wouldn't be the same. Even with his unusual way of wielding it, it was like an extension of his arm; a part of him. She knew because she felt the same way about her own keyblade, and she knew he would be devastated.
He continued to plummet down to the earth, utterly helpless in his current state. She watched him fall and couldn't help but feel as if she were falling too.
Anyone but him.
Terra's antagonized yells snapped Aqua out of her daze.
It suddenly clicked in her head that if she didn't do something, he would crash into the landscape and shatter.
He was going to die.
Without thinking. Aqua launched herself forward, toward Ventus. She caught him in mid-air, with the aid of a reflect spell, only a few feet away from the ground, but was propelled backward by the immense momentum that he gained from his fall.
When he two finally skidded to a halt she held head and chest wrapped protectively in her arms. Aqua glanced at him, for a second fearing the worst, but squeaked in relief when she saw his eyes darting back and forth across her beautiful face.
A small tear escaped her azure eye and he wished nothing more to wipe it away; to comfort her; to hold her. But being as frozen as he was, all he could do was stare at her. However, he didn't mind, as this was his favorite pass time while he thought she was not looking.
The young keyblade bearer had always been rather taken with his blue haired companion ever since they had met to train under Master Eraqus all those years ago. This quickly turned to infatuation as the years rolled by, then to blatant love. At first, he had been scared, because he could not help but feel inferior to Terra in most cases, but his hopes soared whenever his two older friends would argue or wage war in the form of sparing matches and often try very hard to cause the other physical harm. Not that he liked seeing his friends hurt, but it helped his ego to know that Aqua never liked Terra that way. So, he would marvel at how graceful she always seemed to be and loved it when she was especially kind to him. He never really appreciated the sparse, yet present babying that he received, as he was only year or so younger than the others, but he knew she meant well. It didn't help that Terra constantly goaded him for being a mama's boy when she would stick up for him, as if he didn't know how, but he could live with it if it meant she became closer to him.
And now, he was in her arms.
Aqua didn't miss a second of it. She would see how he looked at her with those bright blue eyes. He would help her practice, overseeing her sessions from a vantage point on a boulder. She would preform various flips and maneuvers and he would stare at her in awe, not at how agile she was as she had thought (tough he would never deny that she was indeed agile), but rather at her beauty, and noticing how she would do a cute little hop-skip before thrusting herself forward and doing a couple cartwheels, then landing gracefully on her feet. Or he would help her study her spellwork, even if the boy, however skilled, was not at the same level of prowess as she and could not hope to pull off the complicated spells depicted. When Aqua brought this to his attention, he simply said that he would always be there for her, no matter how grueling it was to pour over books which contained words he did not even know. He obviously thought that his words were insignificant, but she practically melted inside at how sweet and considerate he could be.
Despite what she thought, or however much she told herself that she wasn't falling for the boy with gravity defying blond hair, she was in love with him. She loved how he would stare at her lovingly, however self concious she may have felt at the time. She loved how he seemed to make it his life's goal to make her smile every minute of the day. She loved how sweet and selfless he could be, and how protective he was over her. She loved how he would still blush deeply whenever their skin made contact, despite a good six or seven years of living together. She chuckled as she remembered a time not too long ago when he had walked in on her getting dressed and had stammered about a hundred apologies before stumbling out of the room. Granted, she had been furious at the time, but now she had the strange desire to do it over again with her pulling him deeper into the room.
More tears cascaded down her deeply blushing cheeks as she cupped a hand around his still frozen face, curiously warm to her touch. She smiled a little at his questioning eyes and knew, had his cheeks not been covered in ice, he would be blushing too.
Aqua leaned into Ventus and placed her cheek to his, still warm despite his being frozen, and whimpered, "Never scare me like that ever again."
He tried to speak; to say he was fine; to comfort her in any way he could, but to no avail. She, however, didn't seem to mind as she bent closer to his frost caked ear and whispered, "I don't think I could live without you Ven."
She raised herself back up only to lower herself to his face and press her lips to his. Yes, she knew he couldn't move and that he wouldn't accept it if he were able to, but she needed this. She needed to be sure he was okay.
She closed her eyes and deepened the kiss, taking all of the time she could, as she was sure he would defrost sooner or later and the moment would never last.
When she broke apart from his lips, she saw his eyes were wide. She knew it. He had never wanted it to happen and would probably yell at her the moment he was free from his icy prison.
He lay there, overcome with shock. He couldn't believe it. She had done it. She had kissed him.
Ven felt a wave of heat and slowly but surely started to feel the ice turn to water as the realization hit him.
She loved him back.
He felt his fingers prune and some shards slip off of his body and shatter on the ground. Aqua was astounded by the speed of his recovery, yet a little afraid. Yes, she was happy he would be well again supernaturally faster than she expected, but it also meant she would have to take responsibility much earlier than she would have liked.
He sat up, breaking the remaining ice, and looked at the ground in between his legs. Aqua watched him touch his lips with trepidation.
This was it. This was when he would shout at her for taking advantage of him, and she hung her head in shame.
"Wh-where did th-that come f-from?" Ven managed, shivering. That was an odd way to tell someone off, she mused. Then again, everything about him was different from the way he held his keyblade right down to the way he respected her privacy, while any other boy would have either blatantly ignored it or burst with curiosity after so many years of living with a rather pretty girl. She thought it was cute, and she sometimes went out of her way to make him uncomfortable just to see him blush and stutter. Yes, it was selfish, but he was hers; no ifs, ands, or buts.
Aqua let the tears roll down her face and hugged him tight. Anything for just another second of him.
"I-I'm so sorry Ventus." she wailed. "I just couldn't bear the thought of loosing you without telling h-how I feel."
There was a small pause and she feared his reaction, playing hundreds of different scenarios in her head.
She let out a small squeak of surprise as he cupped his shaking hand on her cheek, and she flushed a bright pink.
"How do you feel?" he asked, regaining control of his speech, determined to confirm his suspicions. Or wishes, rather. But hey, who was counting?
She stared at him for a moment, shocked that he hadn't even gotten angry with her yet. The shock quickly turned to frustration at his obliviousness. She had been sending him signals for months, not to mention just kissing him a few moments ago, and he still didn't know how she felt. All of the times she would linger with her hugs, or brush her hand against his while they looked at the stars, and he still had no clue. Still, no one could be that tactless.
"Ven... I think you kn... know...-"
She trailed off as he pushed a strand of silky blue hair out of her eyes and tilted her chin up to make her look at him. She shuddered as he bored his cerulean eyes into her azure ones and felt as if she would drown in them.
He leaned in and let his lips lightly brush her ear as he whispered, "Aqua, I need to hear you say it."
She stared past him, not even taking in the scenery she was looking at as she breathed, "I love you."
He lingered a second before starting to pull back, but she wrapped her arms around his still armored neck, muttering a small 'no' and forcing him back to her. She didn't care if he wanted to leave her there, sitting on the ground. She reveled in their close proximity, addicted to his scent, but he grabbed her hands softly, abandoning his gloves, and peeled them away from each other, joining them again in front of him instead.
Aqua looked up and stared into his eyes helplessly, expecting him to get up and rush to help Terra. She thought he abandon her, but instead felt his hand find the back of her neck and gently guide her head toward his. Her eyes widened as he pushed his lips into hers and she felt his tongue probe the inside of her mouth as she had dreamed so many times before, effectively melting in his arms.
She subconsciously snaked her arms around his neck and he pulled the small of her back closer to him. They deepened the kiss before pulling apart and she gasped from air. His forehead met hers and he whispered, "You don't know how long I've been waiting to hear that."
She wrapped her arms around his stomach, burying her head into his chest, before saying, "Yeah, I do."
They sat there, comfortable with their positions, for all of ten seconds before the plateau turned valley glowed an ominous purple. The couple looked up and saw Xehanort shoot a sphere of clouded violet electricity into the sky, a triumphant grin stretched across his face. They watched in horror as the clouds spiraled and the sky lit up, the light of the moon shifting to from a blue bordered yellow heart.
He had done it. He had awoken Kingdom Hearts.
Ven leaped up with a growl and made to run off in the direction of the perfectly straight cliff side, but Aqua caught his wrist and wheeled him around. She wrapped her arms around his midsection again and leaned into him. Yes, she was taller, but only by an inch or so, and she didn't want to hurt his pride, so she leaned.
"I still need to hear it." she said into his shoulder.
He looked confused for a second before wrapping his arms around her waist and kissing her cheek lightly, sending shivers sown her spine.
"Aqua, I love you."
They exchanged a parting kiss before he grabbed a nearby keyblade that was somewhat similar to his own and rushed off to help his friend. Ven launched himself at the cliff side and used his unnatural speed to fly up the perpendicular rock, keyblade in hand.
And Aqua couldn't help but feel, as she summoned her own keyblade while lightly touching her lips, that she was flying too.
(AN: yes, it was all corny and mushy and shit, but c'mon, this couple deserves mush.)