Finally an epilogue for what happened after the duo's journey in Gran Pulse. Once again thanks for everyone who have read, followed, favorited, and reviewed this story.
So here's the epilogue, enjoy.
Somewhere unknown and dark…
"You failed AGAIN?!" Maleficent's angry voice echoed through the room. She was standing before the now stuttered not so mighty Captain Pete with trembling hands and legs and sweating a lot, fear to face the wrath of the witch "You imbecile! How many times did you fail in your task, you incompetent fool? Even a chimpanzee could do this simple job!"
Pete was too intimidated with her glare and her glowing magic staff, he knew that one wrong step, and he would end up in the same prison or worse. Sweating and trying to be reasonable, Pete raised his finger "B-but Maleficent, I was able to uhhh…" he thought for an excuse as he scratched his head.
"You didn't accomplish anything, you fool!" Maleficent then aimed her staff and fired a green flame which was barely hit the ex-steamboat captain and hit the wall instead, leaving a huge hole on the wall along with the terrified big cat. "Now thanks to you, Sora had sealed another keyhole of the world!"
"M-Maleficent, p-please give me another chance." Pete groveled before the horned witch, begging for a mercy "I'll do everything for you. I will clean your room… nonono! All the rooms including the windows, and I'll even clean your shoes, and feed Diablo."
"Silence!" Maleficent shouted making Pete talked no more. As she looked at the round magical table, an imaginary view of Sora who was controlling the Gummi ship while Cloud stood beside him, crossing his arms appeared from it. Maleficent then looked at the two while rubbing her chin, thinking for another plan in her head. 'This is very serious. If Sora locks more worlds even the undiscovered ones, slowly but sure Xehanort's plans will be foiled.'
"Very well then…" She said as she turned back to face the still frightened cat "I'll give you another chance. But this time don't fail me!"
Hearing her forgiveness was just like hearing a boss who gives his employees one week day off for Pete. His terrified face quickly turned into happy and he stood up then saluted her just like a soldier does to his superior "Your orders ma'am!"
"Humph. Well then, here's your new task…"
"I'm listening madam!"
Castle That Never Was – The Altar of Naught
Master Xehanort was standing in the middle of the open area, looking at the night sky which seemed would never turn into morning sunshine. Two portal of darkness then appeared behind him, revealing none other than Xemnas, and Young Xehanort.
"So… How it is going?" The bald goateed man asked as he turned to face the two with a disappointed face "I assume that both of you failed, right? I don't see either of you with Sora here."
Xemnas looked down in embarrassment while clenching his fists. If it wasn't because of Riku, he would've succeeded in bringing a compensation for their master. On the other hand, Young Xehanort kept a straight face while looking at his older self "Our apologies Xehanort, but we found some useful information for you."
Hearing his reply, he old man's face turned back into his usual evil smile "That's good, just after Ansem told me interesting information, now you have the same thing for me too." Master Xehanort replied as he rubbed his goatee "So… what do you have to tell me about hmmm?"
"Well… when Vanitas took over my body for a while, we've found that Sora could transform into a darkness being, similar just like a heartless. Also… it seems that this happens only when Sora was overwhelmed by his negative emotion, thus feeding his inner darkness and let it consumes him."
Master Xehanort's eyes widened in excitement upon hearing his explanation, after the information about Cloud who couldn't accept his own darkness manifestation, now he knew that Sora would involuntary let himself to be consumed by his own darkness as long he experienced painful things and Xehanort knew very well how to do that. "Interesting indeed… Perhaps we can't let him away with it… yet." He finished with a smirk formed on his lips.
Confused with what their master had said, Xehanort stepped forward "Then what should we do now, Master Xehanort?"
The bald man simply summoned a portal of darkness and walked inside before glancing at the two "We will wait. Wait until the fruit is ripe enough to be harvested." With that he disappeared inside the portal, leaving the two in confusion.
"There's nothing to do here anymore…" Young Xehanort said as he snapped his finger, summoning the portal of darkness right behind him. As he turned back to enter the portal, he glanced at the Superior in Between "I'll be in library if you need me."
Now Xemnas was the only one left, stood in the middle of the Altar of Naught. He looked at the night sky with crossed arms, but then suddenly an image of someone flashed inside his head. The person was a short blue haired woman with blue eyes who wore a black and blue, high-collared halter top with two pink, intersecting belts over her chest, and black shorts and white bell-sleeves and tan fingerless gloves and black stockings. She also wore blue cloth that covered her sides and a pair of armored heels. The woman was smiling at him from his point of view and showed three star shaped trinkets which came in blue, green, and orange color.
"…you and I have our Mark of Mastery exams tomorrow. I made us good luck charms. Here!" She said as she handed the Wayfinder to one of her friends or Xemnas from what he was seeing.
"Hrrrrrrnnggh!" Clutching his head from the pain of the sudden memories, Xemnas fell on his knee. Somehow he didn't understand how he saw things like this. Who was this woman? Had he ever met her from somewhere? And why were the place and the scene that he saw so familiar for him?
'What… what was that?' He thought as he tried to stand again and walked down the ladders 'Those aren't my memories… Could it be his? But no way…' Couldn't think for any possible answers, Xemnas decided to let it slide for now as he summoned a portal of darkness and went inside.
Inside the Shera
Riku was leaning against the wall while Cid kept steering the control of the ship. He was glad that he managed to keep a low profile while keeping an eye on Sora. Bored with the silence along their trip, Cid decided to break the ice.
"So where are goin next, eh?"
Riku then thought for a moment, deciding where to go next until he turned at the blond pilot "Well Cid. If you don't mind, I'd like to drop by Twilight Town then."
"Twilight Town you say?" Cid eyes then blinked in confusion "Never heard that before, kid. Care to tell me how it looks?"
Hearing his reply, Riku slapped his temple. So Cid never knew where the Twilight Town located before? Sighing, he walked toward the device that looked like a digital map or something and pointed a world that shaped like a giant clock tower with a bell on the each side and a running tram below it. "This is the Twilight Town Cid."
"So that's the Twilight Town eh? Okay then… uploading the coordinates and… done!"
ENTERING THE HYPERSPACE WITHIN THIRTY SECONDS. NOW ACTIVATING THE GUMMI GRAVIMETRIC WARP DRIVE…
As the loudspeaker spoke, Cid walked away from his control deck and sat in his pilot seat then tightened his safety belts. "Better do the same as me kid, unless you want to vomit when we arrive."
Riku then did the same as he told to and sat on his own seat then fasten his belts. As the digital counter on the monitor reached zero, suddenly Riku felt a massive turbulence inside the whole ship that made him shocked, however Cid didn't look shocked at all as this wasn't something big. Noticing the uneasiness of the silver haired teen, the blond pilot turned his head toward him "Relax kid, you will get used with this."
"Ah… okay then." Riku nodded as he closed his eyes to make himself relaxed. At the same time, the ship suddenly moved in a lightning speed that made it looked like disappeared from the space, jumping through the hyperspace warp drive to reach their destination: Twilight Town.
Inside Sora's Gummi Ship
"That was very awesome thing that we ever saw, right Cloud?" Sora asked while steering the Gummi ship. Ever since leaving the Gran Pulse, along with the crystallized Cocoon, he couldn't help but think about how awesome it was when he saw Fang and Vanille turned into a massive beast Ragnarok and stopped the falling giant sphere by encased it inside a giant crystal pillar. On the other hand though, Cloud didn't seem paid attention at his story as he was leaning against the wall while closing in eyes in deep thought.
'Don't you think it's already over Cloud. As long as you can't accept your darkness, I'll always come back.'
Sephiroth's last words still echoed inside his mind which made him a bit troubled. Was that meaning he would come again? Waiting for him in somewhere while brought another disaster to the innocent people?
"Hello? Earth to Cloud! Are you there?"
Realizing that Sora was calling him, Cloud opened his eyes and looked at the spiky brunette who was snickering after he called him with a pun about earth and heaven.
"What are you laughing at?"
"Whops, nothing really. Sorry Cloud." Sora replied, scratching his head before he looked the blond SOLDIER with a naughty grin on his face which earned him a glare from Cloud.
"Now what's with that face?"
"Nothing." He replied while turning his seat to face him "I was thinking that you had a thing for Aerith, Cloud. But looks like I was wrong about that."
"What do you mean?"
"Oh come on Cloud. You have to admit that your princess is Lightning, right?" Now Cloud was taken aback with his answer as Sora tried to remember anything that could be counted as romantic for them. He then raised his finger after finally found the answer "For example like… how you carried her after you rescued her from the Dark Thorn heartless."
Cloud only huffed and crossed his arms at his words "Whatever you want to say Sora."
"Still shy as ever…" Sora said as he turned his pilot seat back. He then noticed the familiar world nearby or the world where he learnt about the existence of Gran Pulse in the first place "Hey, that's Radiant Garden." He then turned his head at Cloud again "Want me to drop you there, Cloud?"
Cloud then walked beside him while examining the possible landing places, he then pointed at one image that showed a place filled with crystal walls and cliffs everywhere "The Crystal Fissure. I have the unfinished business there."
"Aye-aye sir." With one button pushed by his finger, a column of light surrounded Cloud's body as he began to dissipate, ready to be teleported to Crystal Fissure. But what was his purpose of going there? Did he want to go to the Dark Depths where he had his fight with Sephiroth before?
"Hey. If you meet Leon and the others, tell them I said hi, okay?"
The blond SOLDIER only nodded while smiling a bit before he completely vanished from the ship's interior. Now finally alone, Sora couldn't help but think how he was still weak and unable to resist his own darkness. Letting himself to be transformed into Anti Form was a prime example and that was the main reason why he failed in his Mark of Mastery exam. As Sora pulled the lever switch that changed the ship into Auto-Pilot mode, he rose up from his seat and crossed his arms, entering the serious thinking mode.
"I still can't hold off my own darkness." He said before sighing in defeat "At this rate, there's no way I would be able to face Xehanort. What should I do now?"
As he questioned himself, the world map indicator lamp blinked, notifying the nearby world on the sight.
"Another world? What could it be…" Before Sora could finish his words, his eyes widened in disbelieve. The world that he saw on the monitor was a total wasteland with nothing but dirt and sands. However the most noticeable feature from the world was the countless Keyblades in many shapes that planted on the ground like the post war swords left from the fallen soldiers and knights. Rubbing his eyes to make sure whether he was hallucinating or not, the spiky brunette opened his eyes and found that world was real. The Keyblade Graveyard
"What's this? I've never seen this world before…" Sweating from the terrifying sight of the world, Sora embraced himself and activated landing teleportation beam to set a foot there. "But still… I better take a look at this." 'And why does this place somehow seem familiar to me? Have I ever been here before?' He thought as his body began to dematerialize inside the teleportation beam.
Gran Pulse – Vallis Media
"Strange kupo…" The merchant Moogle, Mog who had set his synthesize shop wondered. Ever since he met Lightning, Hope, Vanille, Fang, Snow, and Sazh he hadn't seen his top customers aka Sora, Donald, and Goofy yet, instead he could only feel the soft blow of the wind and a dried bush that blown over by the wind in front of him. Sweatdropping since nobody came to buy or even to take a look at his stuff, Mog finally made a decision.
"Ah well, maybe I should back to Traverse Town, kupo. At least Neku and his friends could make a good deal for me, kupo." The Moogle said as he packed his things back.
Poor Mog at the end. So did enjoy the whole story? I hope so.
See ya in my next story when I have the new ideas.
Again, thanks for everyone who have read, reviewed, followed, and favorited this story. You guys are rock and have my deepest gratitude :)