A/N: Sora visits The World That Never Was, part 06 (or 09?), if I remember correctly. Or you can search "Roxas' Sadness." The former is from KH13, and the latter is on youtube. Youtube is the one with the subtitles if you leave the annotations on.

Anyway, spoilers for Dream Drop Distance, although I did add my own things to it because this is fanfiction and I do ship SoRoku. X3


He spies another cloaked figure waiting for him.

(He doesn't want to face another enemy. Why. Why are they after him. He just wants to sleep. He's so tired. So… tired…)

"Who are you?" he calls out, and the black cloak is undeniably Organization XIII, but the figure is small. Too small to be anyone overtly threatening. They are… Sora's height, actually. It reminds him of the girl he saw, the girl with the short raven hair and blue eyes. The girl who he thought was Naminé, but wasn't Naminé. This figure, too, is small, like she had been.

The figure turns. They remove their hood. They are smiling sadly.

It's not the girl with the short raven hair.

"You are…" Sora swallows. He blinks; his eyes sting. "Roxas."

Blond. Face to match Sora's. Solemn. This is Roxas. He remembers him. He met him not too long ago; first he fought him – but was that an illusion? – then discovered he was his Nobody. (Riku had pointed it out. Sora had replied, "I wish I could meet him, too.") Then, before the end battle, Roxas and Naminé appeared to Sora and Kairi. They spoke. Sora remembers.

"If you're here, does that mean I'm dreaming?" Because Last time, Roxas was see-through. He isn't transparent now; he's solid and real and Sora could reach out and touch him, and he bets Roxas would feel warm, not cold. But he must be dreaming again, then, because Nobodies aren't alive the same way Somebodies are. And yet… Roxas looks so alive, burdened by sorrow…

Roxas shakes his head. Not a dream, then, he confirms. He steps forward. He looks defeated. He's tired, too. His face is so gentle. So wise, yet so lost. He makes Sora want to cry just looking at him. Makes Sora want to comfort him.

"Please! Won't you give me a straight answer?"

Roxas pauses. He seems to consider it. He opens his mouth, says something: "I thought I'd be okay, being you."

"Huh?"

"But is has to be you."

"What? What are you saying?"

"There are so many hearts connected to yours…" His hand covers his chest. Sora frowns. He doesn't understand. He had friends. He knows that. But Roxas doesn't seem to be speaking about that. He goes on, "You are me; you have my thoughts and feelings."

Oh.

Sora blinks again. His eyes sting so much. Is he too tired? Is he about to cry? He isn't sure. A tear slipped out when he saw that raven-haired girl. He didn't know why, but the sight of her triggered something within him. Something. Something Roxas must have felt. Roxas. He's been there, in Sora's heart, for a while now. Is that why Sora shed a tear when he left Twilight Town the first time, a place he never knew, with people he didn't know for very long? Is Roxas why?

No. "No…" That's wrong. He sighs, shakes his head. That hurts. "Roxas is Roxas, okay? You're not me." Oh, he might cry now. He really might. This isn't fair. This is wrong. "I wanted to tell you this: You should be able to exist as yourself."

Roxas is taken aback. He gasps. He blinks. Then, slowly, he smiles and his eyes grow soft and he's looking at Sora in a way Sora has never had anyone look at him before, and it aches but it also makes him feel special.

"Sora…" Roxas says, smile lingering. It fades as he leans in, gesturing, telling Sora, "That's why it has to be you." He's serious. But Sora doesn't know what he means. He's so confused. Roxas, please. Roxas, explain.

Roxas walks forward, closing the distance between them. Sora leans backward, unsure, but doesn't resist.

Roxas takes Sora's wrists, holding them out, sliding his gloved hands into Sora's. He is warm, even through his gloves. Sora stares at him in wonder. Why does it feel so right to have Roxas' hands in his? Like they fit.

Roxas holds his gaze. There's that smile again, that sad, but confident smile, like he knows everything will be all right because Sora knows what he's doing, and even though Roxas knows he won't – shouldn't – exist, it's okay, because Sora is the better one between them.

That's wrong. No. It shouldn't be that way. Roxas is good, too. Roxas is, in some ways, a better person that Sora is, he thinks. Roxas deserves to have an existence of his own. Roxas –

Whoa. Oh. Dizzy, so dizzy. Painful! Very painful! Like a headache, it hurts, it hurts, oh…

Roxas is transferring memories to Sora. All of them. All of them. From the moment Roxas was created, a blank creature that could only absorb things and couldn't respond, gaining a name, all the way until he joined Sora after a time spent in the fake Twilight Town. All of it is there; Axel, the raven-haired girl, the Organization, Roxas' thoughts and feelings at the time, Hayner, Pence, Olette, how he wanted to be their friend, how he did get to be their friend in that separate, virtual world, and then Axel trying to get him back, and then Roxas remembering Axel, and all the pain, everything, the raven-haired girl dying in his arms, all of it –

Sora trembles from the onslaught of memories. And then, when it's over, the rush and headache fading, he looks at Roxas, really looks at him, and he finally understands. He knows everything Roxas knows, now. He understands so much more. Roxas' words make sense, now. It's been explained through memories.

And then Sora breaks down crying.

He grips Roxas' hands tightly and he struggles not to, but in the end, the hot tears well up and overflow, and he chokes on sobs. He lowers his head, hiding himself, and Roxas steps closer again until Sora's head is resting against the cool zipper on Roxas' cloak and the warm firmness of Roxas' chest. He heaves sobs into Roxas' clothes and Roxas slides his arms around Sora's back. Comforts him. Doesn't say a word.

When Sora is done crying, he clenches his hands into fists, wipes the tears from his face. Roxas is gone. Sora feels younger again, smaller. He scowls. He's determined, now. More so than ever.

He can't let Roxas down. He can't let any of the people in his heart, connected to his heart, down. They are his friends, too.

And they are counting on him.