Set in the Keyblade Graveyard and the Realm of Darkness.

The reason I asked before posting this is because in this Epilogue, Vanitas is...
Well, it focuses almost entirely on his final and most powerful emotion.
This was spurred by pure wishful thinking.


DISCLAIMER [I do not own Kingdom Hearts] DISCLAIMER


A way to break free from destiny…

He hacked at the dry earth with his Keyblade, simply because there was nothing else on this barren, forsaken land that he could hurt. He created hundreds of new craters and scattered so much dust in the wind that it seemed almost as though a sandstorm had hit. What else was he supposed to do? There was no one here. There was nowhere to go.

And when he was tired of disfiguring the land and aggravating the air, he sat on a cliff top, his legs dangling over the edge. Absentmindedly, he scratched at the white veins that snaked around his suit. It annoyed him, but he was not sure exactly why. He was not sure of anything, as if there was something missing, something he was forgetting.

Softly, he began to hum, his voice a haunted echo across the empty landscape. What song was it that he was singing? He could not recall the words, and the tune seemed a little off, but what did it matter? It was just another of the thousand questions that he had no answer to.

The most important of which: Why am I here?

Digging his fingers into the earth, he loosened up bits of dry soil and rock. Lazily, he flung them into the wind, watching as they circled for a moment before scattering. He was missing something, he could tell, because there was a strength in him that…yearned? Would that be the right word?

He stood up and leaned over the edge of the cliff, looking down at the ground so far below him, wanting to leap down just because. And, for one second, he saw a flash of blue. He blinked, holding his breath, but it had gone. He had imagined it. There was nothing blue down there. The only blue to be seen in this entire world belonged to the sky, and so he looked up.

His eyes narrowed. Something was flipping about in the wind, getting closer and closer. He stepped back from the edge of the cliff as it drew near, though not from fear of course. And just when the object was fluttering mere feet from him, the wind died down. It soared slowly, gently, in his direction until it finally landed facedown at his feet.

He nudged it with his boot, flipping it over, and that strange, strong feeling in his chest suddenly burst into a volume that should be impossible to contain. He picked it up, brushing the dust off its surface. It was a photograph, torn heavily around the edges, and blurred by scratches and dirt. He studied it; studied her… And a flood of memories, a tidal wave of feelings, overwhelmed him.

"Aqua," he heard his own voice say.

He realized what was missing. He realized why he was here. He remembered everything, down to that final moment. He felt that strange yearning again, but now it was perfectly familiar. His memories had given him the answer to the thousand questions.

If I could promise, Aqua, I would…

And he could fulfill that unspoken promise.

"How long have you been down here?" he asked her softly as she slept, very softly so she would not wake. He was seated beside her sleeping form, just reveling in her presence. He was brushing her hair with his fingers, but carefully so he would not disturb her slumber. Sleep was rare for her in this Realm and so he was afraid to take this moment of peace away from her.

Nearby, he felt a vibration, a disturbance, and he turned to see a Shadow slinking towards them. He glared at it, looking straight into the yellow orbs that glowed on its face. And at the closeness of the monster, he could feel hatred and fury set his own golden eyes aflame. In one swift shift of his Keyblade, he stopped it in its tracks with a Blizzard spell and obliterated it with Fire.

Aqua stirred a little, as if sensing the intrusion of the Heartless, and he tensed; ready to leap away in case she opened her eyes. But she did not, and he relaxed again.

"Idiots," he mumbled, glancing angrily for a second at the spot where the Heartless had stood only moments earlier. It could have woken her.

He slipped off his helmet and ruffled his black hair. "Don't worry," he whispered, smirking at Aqua, though she would not see. His expression was strangely arrogant and reassuring at the same time. "I will never let them hurt you. Sleep as long as you want…"

And that is all he would do, because that is all he could do for her. He was not real, he was merely a fragment of what he used to be. And what he used to be was already just a fragment. So what did that make him now? A fragment of a fragment…

He could not be with her any other way. She deserved someone complete, perfect; like she was. And it would only hurt her if she knew of him. If she ever found out that such a broken, incomplete part of him still existed, it would tear her apart. His feelings for her would not allow that to happen. It was best that she did not know.

But he would protect her at least, guarding her light from the shadows that threatened to extinguish it. At her most vulnerable, he would keep her safe. And he would let her sleep, and he would speak to her while she does. And maybe, the sound of his voice would comfort her and she would dream of him.

He heard her murmur something in her sleep, and it was so easy to imagine that she had said his name. "I hope the light is bright, where your dreams are taking you," he whispered.

And when she was calm and silent again, and only the sound of her rhythmic breathing could be heard, he touched her face tenderly. "I love you, Aqua."

The slightest yet sincerest of smiles touched her lips as she sighed, and he felt a strong sense of belonging, of fulfillment. This was why he still existed. This was his new purpose.

He would love her, until she finds a way to escape.

Thank You
It has been a pleasure writing for you.
And an honor having you read my work.

Special Thanks
Aqua Fan / auara351 / Cori Shadowfang
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