Sora felt FURIOUS. This king, someone for once in his life felt like he could trust, was friends with the boy who had plunged his life into darkness. Friends?! With that monster?! He thought, seething with rage.

He burst into his room, grabbing anything that was his and haphazardly packing them.

"I am not staying with anyone who feels any sympathy for him!" He hissed under his breath. He felt numb with anger, numb with hatred. Kairi had tried calming him down earlier, but he didn't want to calm down.

He wanted revenge.

He was going to get the location for him from that stupid little king and when he found him... Images of gruesome, slow, yet extremely satisfying and ironic deaths filled Sora's mind. He had a feeling if he went through with it his ghosts of past and hurt would finally leave him alone-

"Where do you think you're going?" Sora knew it was Riku. He rounded up the last of his things and pushed past his friend "I'm leaving!"

"Just because he was friends with Ven-"

"He doesn't have a name!" Sora yelled, marching down the empty and vast halls.

"He does, Sora, you can't deny it for long-"

Sora whirled around "Someone who kills others just for the sheer hell of it does not have a name or a right to exist in my book! Names bring sympathy, and the last thing I'll have is sympathy for a devil like him!"

Riku blinked at his friend's harsh response. He looked sad moments later "Sora do you realize what you're saying..." He trailed off when he realized Sora wasn't listening to him anymore. The boy paused, then said coldly

"... If you're gonna take his side, I guess I won't see you around anymore." Sora resumed walking.

Riku blinked, feeling his legs starting to turn to jelly "W-what?!"

Sora stopped and turned around again, glaring at Riku "If you're taking his side then I'm leaving." Sora seemed to have trouble saying the words, but continued "Every time I've tried to do something you've stopped me, and now you're taking the side of the monster that took our parents and lives from us. I. Am. THROUGH with this shit. Goodbye, Riku."

Riku's knees finally gave out. He had never really been bothered by anything that had happened to them until now. The thought of Sora leaving him seemed incomprehensible. Riku realized his true fear was of being alone, with no family or friends.

He watched Sora walk down the hall, memories flashing through his particular moment stood out: Sora's first attempted suicide.


Riku was only eleven years old, Sora was only ten. They had been living on the streets for a long time, but they had finally had a steady shelter for a year now. The apartment was eerily silent.

"Sora? Sora answer me, this isn't funny!"

Riku then, to his horror, heard a quiet choking noise coming from their bedroom. He dropped everything and flew to their bedroom to find Sora hanging from the ceiling fan by his belt. From the way his body twitched and that he was still involuntarily gasping for breath, he was still alive.


After only staring for seconds that felt like hours, Riku quickly scrambled to reset their stepladder and undo the knot. He caught Sora, set him down, and loosened the belt around his neck.

"Sora that is NOT funny!" The panicked boy yelled. He paused when the belt was thrown aside, Sora only shallowly breathing. He tried a weak attempt at CPR "Sora come on, wake up! You can't leave me!" Riku felt tears unwillingly overflow.

Sora coughed, taking large gasps of air. Riku, too overjoyed to let his friend have any room, held Sora close and tight.

"...Riku...?... Why... did you-"

"Don't leave me. Please, just don't EVER do that again!" Riku cried, clutching his friend and trying to comprehend what had led him to this. "NEVER do that again!"

Sora gently patted Riku's back, halfheartedly saying "...okay..."


Riku let his head hang low, letting a few tears find their way down his cheeks. "Sora, we're all we've got! Please just think about what you're doing!"

There wasn't any response except his footsteps.

Kairi was running, trying to keep Sora from doing something stupid. She now knew the cause of his suffering, she understood at least part of it. Maybe there was hope to see the light in his heart come to fruition.

But there was the matter of his darkness. Kairi wasn't sure if she was the only person to see the darkness that poured from his skin in waves like smoke when he was accusing her father's friend, but she knew what she had seen.

She knew he needed far more help then she had anticipated.

Kairi found Sora and Riku's bedroom slightly ransacked, neither boy there.

"Where would he go-" she stopped herself, then resumed running, this time her location was the Gummiship Hangar.

On the way she found Riku. He sitting in the middle of the hallway, crying and blankly muttering

"He's leaving..."

Kairi decided to let Sora do what he wanted for now, and she helped Riku back to his room.

"He's not leaving, not on my watch." Riku collapsed onto a small chair, still in shock. Kairi wrapped a blanket around his shoulders and said firmly "I'm bringing him back, okay?"

Riku nodded, but his blank expression told that it hadn't registered.

Sora was just about to enter the Highwind when he heard Kairi say

"You really are leaving..."

He didn't turn, but said "I'm not siding with someone who supports my parent's murderer." He lingered in the door, unsure of whether or not to continue.

"My dad just said Ventus was an old friend of his-"

"Doesn't matter. Having a past friendship warps the true perception of someone.-"

Kairi muttered under her breath "You're the one with the warped perception."

"-He remorselessly killed my dad in front of me when I was only four years old and destroyed my home." he took another step towards the ship "I have no respect for anyone who thinks he is anything else-"

"Oh, so you don't respect me?" Kairi asked, still sounding quiet. Sora turned his head, not saying anything.

"I mean, I know you're not lying... but I don't think Ventus was always like that. My dad has always said he was a bright, happy boy."

Sora thought for the first time since storming off. "Maybe he was... but that doesn't excuse his actions." he then resumed getting into the Highwind "I'm going to find him and make sure justice is served-"

"I think what you really mean is revenge, Sora." he didn't stop, and Kairi played her trump card "We're going to be in other worlds starting tomorrow anyways. It's easier to find someone when you're in a group, and easier to keep them from running..." She really didn't want to spur on Sora's thirst for 'justice', but she didn't know any other way to grab his attention.

Sora stopped, then backed away from the Highwind.
"Yeah, I suppose." he said grudgingly. He then walked past her

"Just keep in mind the only reason I'm tagging along is going to be to find Vanitas or whatever his name is."

Kairi tilted her head, a grin beginning to form "You really his name Vanitas?"

Sora shrugged "It was the first thing that popped in my head, so sue me."

"Still, that's a long way off from Ventus!" Kairi caught up to Sora. He rolled his eyes "Do you really think I care?" She grabbed his hand saying "I think deep down somewhere you do."

Remarkably, Kairi found that Sora didn't openly protest. She smiled, knowing she was definitely doing something right.

Sorry about not uploading yesterday, I was at a high school football game!(gah, marching band, why you no let me have an illusion of a social life? XD) blah blah, lazy chapter, blah angst blah, review.

Yes, that mention of Vanitas was intentional.