Author's Note: This is based off of Raining Moon Song's fanfic called Pieces. So check it out, it's one of the most well-written Xemnas stories I've ever seen.
Disclaimer: I do not own Kingdom Hearts, it belongs to Disney and the folks over at Square Enix. Raining Moon Song owns everything else because it is her idea.
Home At Last
He couldn't quite remember how he had gotten here but he remembered enough to realize that this was not home or anything that really resembled home. He didn't really have a home. He really didn't know what the word "home" meant but understood enough to link it to where a person's life began, recognizing it as a safe haven, and a place to return to. By that definition, he had no place to call his home. Maybe he never would.
He dragged an arm across his eyes and shook his head, feeling tiny bumps crawl up his arms like a series of tiny invisible legs. A memory danced like a flame behind his lidded eyes, these bumps were "goosebumps", people got them when they were cold. He was cold. The ice had used his skin as a canvas and painted his body in a light coating of silver dust, his arms trembled in a foolish attempt to generate heat and break the mould keeping him locked on the swing. True, he made no real attempt to leave the spot, choosing the watch the snow angel that signalled his arrival into this world fill with snow. Soon, it would disappear completely like some unknown soldier without a name or grave marker. With that in mind, he hoped his blood would freeze over, that the frost would stifle his heart and he could finally fall into Death's embrace.
He stared down at his feet, watching his toes dig trenches into the snow and listening to it crackle beneath him. He exhaled deeply, not bothering to open his eyes and watch his breath linger in the air like a silvery afterimage although he did think of a dragon who couldn't breathe fire, only cough up smoke. He chuckled weakly at the image, reaching up to grab the chains that hung on either side of him; they were coated in a thin layer of ice so the tips of his fingers stuck to the chains, what little heat he had melted the ice and left tiny fingerprints on the twisted metal. He was thankful for the gloves even if they didn't protect his hands completely, he only wished his magic was strong enough to cast warmth over his body or form some sort of jacket but the more he thought about it, the more he didn't care.
He felt snow piling up on his head and shoulders but didn't bother brushing it off, his hair fell into sharp points around his neck like a crown of icicles and each snowflake whispered the command to sit still and freeze - he imagined tiny soldiers wrapping beams of ice around his ankles and sticking into the ground so he couldn't move. He shivered again, teeth chattering quietly behind his lips and he was slightly horrified to find that his mouth wouldn't open quite right. Time had passed since he last opened his mouth and he forced his tongue through the frozen flesh barrier and sobbed. Why was this happening to him? Was this the chilly academic's revenge from beyond the grave? Was that damn scientist tormenting him in a world he had no knowledge of? Did he fail his "great purpose"?
He didn't bother wiping his tears because they felt so warm in comparison to everything else but halfway down his cheeks, he felt the streams of tears freeze into cold tattoos that almost seemed to burn because they were so cold. He lowered his head. Let him freeze to death then, it's not as if anyone would care if he just faded away. He was nothing but a hollow puppet whose strings had been cut. He had no drive, no motivation, no one to protect, nothing to distinguish himself from the original...
And so, the shadow fades into nothingness…
He raised his head, a chilling wind blew through his hair and he shifted his gaze to stare at his visitor. She was looking at him concernedly, all big brown eyes and rosy cheeks. She pressed her lips together as if worried that she had said something wrong. He felt snow travel down his back as he moved his head to look at her, he returned his gaze to the ground with a controlled shiver. Sure, he was freezing but his pride refused to let her know that.
"Sorry…but no. You've got the wrong guy." He felt this heart sink when she said nothing but her heavy boots continued to move and she was now in front of him, sinking to his level with her gloved hands poised on her knees. He still didn't look up; she was clearly looking for the other guy.
"Suna, then." He felt her fingers dust the snow from his head and shoulders and looked up fast, eyes widening as she smiled softly at him. Something in her smile disarmed him, he felt utterly unprepared when she leaned forward and wrapped her arms around him. The tears stuck on his face started to run again and he lurched into her embrace, seeking the warmth her body was offering.
"…Suna?" he mumbled, confusion lacing his tone as he grabbed the sides of her jacket, pulling himself closer to her and hesitantly placing his forehead on her shoulder with a shiver. He wondered if he was dreaming, if he was still lying on the floor in Castle Oblivion after Larxene had tossed him aside like a ragdoll. But she had to be real…She smelled so nice.
"It means sand. Riku means land." She explained. "Is it okay, if I call you that?" She pulled away and he let go, still processing the new name and watching as the girl pulled off her jacket and took one of his hands, helping him to his feet and giving him a funny look. She was taller than he was. He hadn't expected that and judging by the stunned look on her face, she wasn't expecting it either. The girl pulled one of his arms through a sleeve and did the same to his other arm.
"I…Yeah…but – "he frowned, trying to find a flaw in what she just said.
"You don't have to be Riku. You don't have to be his shadow anymore." She zipped up the jacket and Suna watched as she pulled off the outer layer of her gloves and took his wrist, slipping his hands inside. He wondered briefly if this was what it was like to have a mother take care of him.
"Why are you doing this?" his voice cracked and she pulled him into another hug, Suna mentally reminded himself to start growing again because his cheek was up against her arm. He felt one of her hands leave his back to pull the hood up over his head, his was struck suddenly by the sheer coldness of his hair.
"Because it wasn't fair." Did she know what happened to him? She sounded like she actually like she did but how?
She was rubbing his back now, alternating between his shoulders and arms to get his blood flowing again and circulate heat. Her eyes looked distant for a split second and Suna felt her shiver. "And I can't leave you out here to freeze…"
"Who are you?" There was something uncanny about her, something so familiar in how she talked to him. Had they met before? No, there were…others. Others who had shown him kindness. His "twin", despite everything. That boy with the keyblade. Even her. He made a vow to protect her based on memories that weren't his or the original's, a promise that had been drawn out on paper and inserted into his consciousness. But they were still his; everything that had ever happened to him was his. This right here, this girl, this was his to remember and cherish. Something he hoped the original never had.
"Tory." She replied. "I know it's weird...but can you trust me?"
"…I think so." He murmured after a moment, still cautious and unsure but she was just so warm.
"Then come on. I don't live far from here." She let him go and weaved her arm around his. Suna latched onto her like a lost child and the two of them walked away from the playground. She was smiling faintly and every now and then she'd look down to see if he was still OK, he would be.
"Let's go home, Suna."
Later that night when everyone was asleep, Suna carefully moved off the cot and quietly searched the room he shared with Xemnas – being extra careful not to wake him up because he was sure the older man wouldn't appreciate it– for paper and a pen. Finding both tucked in a corner, he tiptoed into the hallway and crept into the bathroom, turning the light on and sitting against the door.
He started writing.
"Home". Definition: A safe place, a roof over my head, warm, a place to return to, a place to stay. Hot chocolate. Lots of smiles and hugs…Lots of...love too.
He thought he heard footsteps out in the hall so he climbed onto his knees and stretched his arm out to flush the toilet. He then stood up and turned to the sink, letting the water run for a few seconds as he finished his thought.
My name is Suna. I have a home. I have people who care about me.
He turned off the water and stared at the bottom of the page.
He frowned. There was still something missing. Biting the end of the pencil, he drummed his fingers along the sink top and narrowed his eyes as if that might help him think better. And it did. His lips felt the dryness of the pink eraser and he immediately felt the sensation of Tory's lips on his forehead, just after she had told him that she was going to give him space to settle down. She had leaned in so fast and kissed him before disappearing into the kitchen. Her mouth puckered softly against his skin, not a romantic kiss but the kind that meant a variation of familial love and assurance and comfort and a whole lot of other words like that. Things he was now beginning to attribute to his new home.
Smiling, he pressed the lead into the paper.
Thank you, Tory.