Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts.
WARNING!: Fic under construction!
I suppose I'm whole, now; I've integrated into Kairi. But really, it's more like the fact that she's whole, not me. She's in command most of the time, and the body that we both share doesn't look like me. It looks like her. Or, more accurately, it looks more like her. Our faces do look pretty similar, after all. Change a few things about Kairi's facial structure, make her hair longer and blonder, and you'd have something that would look like me. Really, it's not like we look completely different. It's just… well… it's odd. Becoming whole (terms that I'm starting to question more and more) was something that I guess I looked forward to. I just assumed that I'd be assimilated into Kairi's mind until I'm a Kairi with a Namine's memories, and our personalities blend. Only that hasn't been happening, and, consciously, I'm still completely separate from Kairi.
I really shouldn't be feeling sad about that. I mean, if I blend into Kairi's mind, I'll be destroyed. Still. I'm not sure if I care about that – I haven't been in the outside world for months! I still have her whole mindscape to explore, but I miss actually touching something that's actually real. Not that Kairi's mindscape is bad, or boring. Unconsciously, she repeatedly changes the setting of where I stay. When she's sleeping, there's a nice bed for me too. At mealtimes, or, actually, right before, there's food, of all kinds actually, mostly the things she likes to eat, which, ever so coincidentally, are things I like too. And then, when she's just imagining, there are all these gardens and castles. One remarkable one is a landscape made of crystal and ice, clear and glittering. Very nice.
And well, when she's stuck reading textbooks and writing reports, I get to look through memories. They really are quite fascinating. It's true what Sora said: the memories might be forgotten, but never lost. Right now, I'm in a very interesting memory of Kairi's first birthday party. It's cute. Especially when the cake lands on her head, and all she's doing is looking around and smiling, while everyone else is turning red. Ah, I see; they're rather angry at the boy who ruined the party. He wanted the cake a little early, and – hmmm, that's interesting.
I don't think Roxas has the chance to do this. It's really too bad. There are all these things he doesn't know about that I'm pretty sure he would find, at least, kind of interesting. Like… well… I can't think of anything right now, but there's gotta be something, right? Maybe Castle Oblivion. I know he's been curious about that. He would have really wanted to know what happened to all of those Organization members. So would Sora, now that I think about it. Especially since Sora can't remember anything about it. Including me, which I think is a bit sad. Not a lot of people remember me, actually. Sure, there was the Organization, but they all faded away, except for Roxas. Riku, I'm sure, remembers me, at least a little bit, but it's not like he can talk to me. Kairi is…um… I'm not so sure she remembers I'm there half the time…
But that's okay. I guess. She's busy. They're all busy. I'm… just a bit lonely. That's all. That's all right.
There's… something I do care about, though. It's... well... still possible to get bored. So, I've taken up a project. I've found that, even from inside Kairi's mind, I can still access Sora's memories. It's strange, I guess. But, then again, I was a witch. Correction: I'm still a witch. I can still control the memories from anyone even vaguely connected to Sora. So why does this matter? Well, I've got an incomplete memory. Thanks to Sora, since he became whole (sort of- he wasn't really whole with Roxas missing, right?), and Kairi, because she didn't turn Heartless like she was supposed to. Of course not, she's a Princess of Heart – I wonder what that makes me by default - I don't blame them. But this project here, that I'm working on? I'm going to try and fill in all the blank spots in my memory. Yes, that's right. I'm going to search my own mind and everyone else's to see what really happened. After all, it's not like the memories are lost. Just forgotten for a little while.
Or a long while. Whatever works.
She blinked, and looked again at the little bits of pink and white swirling around in the air, falling from an old, gnarled tree. They looked out of place on the beach, surrounded by sand and waves. Sure, they were pretty, but she didn't understand why they would even be there. The Islands didn't have any plants like that. No big trees, no really leafy ones like the one in front of her. There were mango trees. Guava trees. Coconut trees. But no trees that would grow that big or scatter so many petals. She didn't even know those trees existed.
A birthday party – there was a leafy tree with bright red flowers, and she was smiling –
Hey Kairi, do you remember where you used to live?
Stop asking me that. You know I don't.
Really? Are you sure?
I'm sure. Guys, stop asking me.
Why? Come on! We'll trigger your memory somehow!
I don't want my memory triggered.
Aw, come on -
Leave me alone!
Falling. She was falling.
How – how had that happened? That couldn't have happened this wasn't real she wasn't stupid enough to walk off a cliff or anything–
Get down from there!
I can't! I'm scared!
What, you're afraid of heights?
No, I'm afraid of the ground!
And there it was, looming up at her. She was going to crash, and be a bloody splash on the flower petal strewn ground. Instinctively, she put out her hand – no don't do that, you'll break your arm, you stupid girl – but it's better than breaking my whole body! She needed to break her fall, but crashing into a tree would do as much damage as crashing into the ground –
The ground dissolved beneath her and she was falling, falling, again. Only this time, she wasn't falling face first. She was falling backwards, looking at the sky.
Dazed. Stunned. That was what she was. For a moment, she couldn't do anything but just watch the orange and red of the sky. "Kairi!" Riku. Sora. They were yelling. Screaming her name. That brought her back, and she reached out. Riku and Sora seemed so close she could almost touch them. And then, somehow, she was holding on, barely. Then fingers slipped, and she was falling again.
"Kairi? Are you okay? Sweetie, can you hear me?"
Into the water. Into the salt and brine. Straight down into the coral and cliffs. And slowly, she was being carried away, like she was nothing at all. She was kicking out, as hard as she could. But it made no difference. The current was having no trouble at all, carrying her away. Then something snagged her foot, and started to slow her down. She kicked again, but it didn't want to let go. Before she knew it, she was dragged under.
The hand that had a hold of her foot was black, little wisps of darkness coming off of it. Looking further down revealed beady yellow eyes that stared straight ahead. Bright and unblinking. She squinted. Sora? The thing was shaped a lot like him, from the spiky hair to the crown-shaped necklace that was now radiating darkness. But it couldn't be.
But still… Sora. Whatever it was, the thing put what must have been a finger to where its mouth should have been.
And then something solid hit her feet, and she knew it had to be the seafloor, but she didn't care. Her lungs were bursting, and she was getting a little light-headed, and she needed to breathe, but there was nothing here but water, and if she tried to breathe that in, she would be dead, and –
Who cares anymore?
She gave in, and took a deep breath. No water came rushing into her lungs. It was air, really. It was damp and heavy and smelled of salt, but it was definitely air.
And then the Sora look-a-like stood up, and summoned a giant key – Keyblade – and started to come closer. She took a step backwards, and as she did so, a blinding light came up from below her. She saw white for a few seconds - then the light subsided. The look-alike had gone. Shaking her head (she was hallucinating, she knew it), she looked down. She wasn't standing on the seafloor, like she thought, but a circular platform, floating in the darkness. She restrained an urge to look over the edge and see how far the darkness went…
She took a closer look at the platform. It was a picture, of a red-haired girl – that's me – which seemed to be the main focus. Kairi. Right next to her were four smaller pictures. Three boys; one of them was Sora, another one had to be Riku, and that last one – that last one, she didn't know at all. He kind of looked like Sora, but that couldn't be it. There was something off about it, but she couldn't figure out what. She gave up and looked at the last picture.
It was a girl, with blonde hair. It looked a little like herself, but with blond hair instead of red.
She examined the entire platform closely. What was strange was that everyone seemed to be sleeping, their eyes closed. The only ones that seemed to be awake were the unknown boy and girl. Odd…
And then she heard a voice. It came from everywhere, and it seemed to come from nowhere. The voice was strange, to say the least. In fact, she wasn't even sure it was even speaking. It wasn't loud, it wasn't quiet – it was both, in a manner of speaking.
So much to do… So little time… Take your time…
Hold the door open. Can you do it?
She snorted. This was the strangest dream she'd ever had. It felt so real, too. She could still feel the water, she could still feel pain. She still couldn't wake up. And anyway, what door? There wasn't a door anywhere. What was she supposed to hold open, if there wasn't even a door?
She stepped forward. It was all a dream anyway. No reason why should listen to the voice. No reason at all. Holding open a door wasn't what she wanted to do. What she wanted to take a closer look at the pictures, before it was all lost. And there they were. Spiky brown hair, bright blue eyes. Dull purple and aquamarine. And there was the picture of herself. Red hair, and the same bright blue eyes as –
There was something off. Their eyes had been closed. Now they were open? She bent down. Glass. The platform was made of cold, unmoving glass. Maybe she saw it wrong before? No, she was sure they were closed a minute ago…
Power sleeps within you. If you give it form…
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw a flash of light. She turned around.
…It will give you strength.
Three stone tablets. One bearing a staff, another with a shield, and the last one with a sword.
…This had to be the strangest dream she'd ever had. But somehow, she couldn't stop herself from moving, from obeying the voice, from stepping toward the tablet with tablet with the sword. Her mind seemed detached from her body, and she could only watch as she stretched a hand toward it.
The voice spoke again. The power of the warrior. Invincible courage. A sword of terrible destruction… Is this the power you seek?
She gritted her teeth. She was starting to sink into the dream. She was starting to go into that state where everything said in a dream was taken for truth. Could she fight it? No, but couldn't she try –
She shuddered. No. Most definitely, no. She was no warrior, she didn't want that. Even if it did help her, it wasn't what she wanted. The sword felt heavy and uncomfortable in her hands, and she gladly dropped it back onto the tablet, where it floated gently.
She walked toward the tablet with the staff.
The power of the mystic. Inner strength. A staff of wonder and ruin… Is this the power you seek?
She hesitated. She hadn't looked at the shield yet. But the staff was nice, just the right size for her, and she felt like she could conquer the world with it. After a moment of thought, she nodded. "Yes." The word slipped out, quietly, unobtrusively, almost invisibly.
And with that confirmation, the staff started fading away, breaking into shards of light.
What? No, she couldn't have broken it. She had held it, and it had been sturdy and strong, but – she didn't know about this kind of stuff, it was some weird magical mumbo-jumbo, maybe it had been spelled to look sturdy but actually wasn't. But then, that really would've meant that she broke it, right?
Alarmed, she reached for shards of light – for what, she didn't know – and then stopped.
The light was vanishing into her hands.
Your path is set for you.
The other two weapons broke away, fading quickly in a burst of light
Value your prized possessions.
You must be strong.
You cannot be indecisive.
Your journey begins now.
The platform broke, and she was falling, falling…
And she landed on another platform. But she had barely taken note of her surroundings before the platform broke, again, and she kept on falling. Kept on landing, platform kept on breaking, kept on falling.
And here you are, endlessly falling.
And she fell again.
Won't anyone find you?
Suddenly, a beam of light shone through, and she landed. Not gently this time, but with a hard thump that knocked the breath out of her. With a moan, she shook her head and pushed herself back up. The platform she landed on didn't break this time. It had a girl on it, like before, but it wasn't Kairi; it was that blonde-haired girl she had seen before. There were no surrounding pictures, like before. It was entirely empty.
…Why did that feel so wrong?
You shall be alone. Is that a surprise, to you? Of course, everything will be a surprise. Memory will mean everything and nothing.
There will be times where you must use your power. It will mean everything and nothing. Use it well.
Dark spots began to appear on the platform. They rose up, two dimensional shifting into three dimensional, forming spindly legs and arms. Soon, the picture of the girl was hidden by the black shadow-like creatures. She took a step back, and began to sink.
Darkness. That's what it was. She was sinking into the darkness.
No, no nonononono –
Cold dark tainted she could feel it slippery slimy dark consuming -
Gotta get up gottago gottagetup-
Push yourselfout push, go run stayaway
Hands can't touch solid, just go into colddark taintedconsuming -
NO way out no way out no way out-
Nothingleft no thing how no –
Can't breathe, can't bre…
Then she woke up.
Yes, this was my first memory. Odd, isn't it? I still thought I was Kairi then. It made sense. In this, I still looked like Kairi. Just exactly like her, and my memories matched up with hers perfectly – except for this one little thing…
What's that? No, this isn't an Awakening. Similar, but it wasn't. Really.
If I had been someone else, I might have gotten the entire process; the part where I had to fight against all of the Heartless. A proof of existence, I guess. Then it would have been a waiting game. You either fought off all of the Heartless, or you sunk in the dark and was forgotten and never remembered. Why was I any different? I was the Nobody of a Princess of Heart. And the Princesses were never warriors. There were healers, singers, magicians (how else did they get all those birds and animals to go around them? They had a sort of magical…aura, so to put it. It was possible to expand this to actual magical prowess, with intentional offensive spells, but happened rarely), yes, maybe. But warriors? It was doubtful to find one with fighting ability. Why do you think they were so easily captured?
A Princess of Heart, being made of light, would easily survive the darkness. That all but guaranteed my…somewhat debatable… success.
Success of what, you ask? Nothing really. This whole thing determined whether I would awake as a human-like Nobody or not.
Like I said before. If I was somebody else, it would have been a waiting game. How many waves of Heartless you could defeat, how long you fought before you started sinking, and how long you held out before losing your sense of self.
All those determined whether you could be a Nobody at all. After all, it all determined your strength of will. Even if you had no heart, your will had to be strong enough to even move your body. Your soul didn't need a strong will when you were whole. The heart handled that, back then.
I don't know the specific times, really. But if you lasted a long enough time…
Well. Assuming you were deemed strong enough to be a Nobody in the first place, the length of time you struggled would determine how strong you actually were as a Nobody. And then, there's the most vital difference of it all, the losing of your sense of self. Some did, and those became the Nobodies who had no memory, the lesser ones, the inhuman-looking ones. The ones who did, well, were… how would you say… ah. Those would be the ones that had won the privilege of identity and memory.
It's obvious enough to figure out on your own.
Obvious to me.
If I had been anybody else.
Not everybody's lucky enough to be the Nobody of a Princess of Heart. After all, as far as I know, I'm the only one. Only one with enough light to make it through the darkness that I was sinking in.
As far as I know, I was the only one who made it through the trial by doing nothing. By relying on the power of a non-existent heart to guide me through.
If I had been anybody else…
I barely had any fighting ability. My instinct was to dodge rather than to attack. I wouldn't have lasted long. I would have been overwhelmed, just like what already happened. Only, because I wouldn't be special, I wouldn't succeed the trial. I couldn't struggle, so that automatically gave me nothingness. True nonexistence, not even the fake existence given to Nobodies. And, if by some chance, I stayed conscious long enough to be a Nobody, I wouldn't have woken up.
If I hadn't been me, I would have never woken up.
I would have never been Naminé.
-No sense of self.
I would have been nothing.
I would be nobody.
-No existence at all.
Which is strange, really. After all, I am a Nobody.