Not mine, don't own. I wish I had a Saïx plushie to huggle though.

Saïx wasn't sure if he liked the way that Xemnas looked at him sometimes, and at first, he thought it was because the Superior had figured out his and Axel's little plan to overthrow the Organization, but if that was the case, nothing ever came of it. Xemnas just watched him, and Saïx felt an echo of fear shiver across his skin whenever that orange eyed gaze landed on him. Why was the man staring at him?

The blue haired Nobody tried to ignore the stares as he plotted with Axel to become Xemnas' second -

(All the better to stab you in the back with, my dear.)

- and when the opportunity came to eliminate Zexion, his closest competitor for the role, he had seized it with both hands, sending the Schemer to Castle Oblivion, along with Vexen, and Lexaeus. It would be easy to have them eliminated there along with Marluxia and Larxene and claim that they were traitors as well.

Saïx was broken from his thoughts when he heard the door to his small office open, and he turned around to tear strips off of whomever had come in but was brought up short when he saw Xemnas standing behind him.

"Superior," he said respectfully, even as he repressed a shudder at the man's gaze.

"VII," Xemnas said flatly as he approached the desk. Saïx stood up, and Xemnas lightly reached up and gripped Saïx's chin with one hand and traced the jagged lines of the x shaped scar across his face with the other. Saïx was unable to prevent himself from shivering at the touch; he remembered well the day he had received the scar, and it wasn't something he liked to think about. The rest of the Organization, including Axel, believed that he had received it during Radiant Garden's fall, but that couldn't be further from the truth.

Isa lay gasping on the grass covered ground, and he clutched frantically at his chest, expecting to find a gaping hold where one of Lord Ansem's apprentices had stabbed him with a weird looking weapon. There was nothing there however, and part of him wondered why he didn't feel surprised at that knowledge.

Beside him was Lea, and his best friend wasn't moving, but Isa couldn't find the ability to fear for his friend's life. What had happened to them? To their home? Their families? Why was he not frightened by thoughts that had him screaming in terror in what seemed like a lifetime ago?

Footsteps crunching on the grass nearby broke him from his thoughts, and he tilted his head back to see a figure wearing a long black hooded coat approaching him. He couldn't see the person's face through the shadows of the hood, and the figure walked right up to him in stopped. Isa stared up at the person. Was this person going to help them? Finish them off? Haul them off into the dilapidated mansion that he could see nearby and do terrible, terrible things to them?

"Isa," said a voice from within the hood, and the sound of it sent a shiver up Isa's spine, like someone with cold hands had just run a finger from his waist to his neck "Yes, you will do."

(My, what big teeth you have.)

Isa closed his eyes and felt himself somehow floating off the ground to stand in front of the person. Pain erupted across his face as two intersecting lines were gashed into his skin, crossing just at the bridge of his nose. He felt the burning from the fresh wound and felt blood running down his face to drip off of his chin.

"You belong to me." said the voice "And from hence forth, you shall be know as... Number VII, Saïx. Come, let us collect Number VIII -"

Lea, he means Lea, Isa realized through the burning pain on his face, though again, he felt no fear for his friend, or for himself for that matter.

"- and return to your new home."

I don't want to go anywhere with you. He tried to say, but the fire had spread throughout his entire head, and he found it difficult to form a coherent thought, much less speak a sentence out loud. He collapsed bonelessly to the ground in a bloodied heap as the hooded figure walked away from him, towards Lea, whereupon he promptly passed out.

"VII," Xemnas said evenly, breaking Saïx from his thoughts. "It has come to my attention that you are not as... attentive to our goal as you should be."

"I am, Superior." he replied, finding it a bit difficult to speak with Xemnas' grip on his chin. "I am loyal to our cause."

"Are you? Or are you only loyal to your." His grip on Saïx's chin tightened with every word, which forced the Luna Diviner to bite back a yelp of pain. "and VIII's. Little. Plot."

"I am loyal, Xemnas. Have I not served you well?"

"Yes," Xemnas replied, his finger still lightly tracing the scar that he had inflicted years ago "You have, but it is not enough."

"What more can I do?"

"You will understand," Xemnas dropped his hand from the scar to Saïx's chest, where his physical heart was beating steadily in the absence of his spiritual heart. "when the time comes."

(All the better to consume you with.)

"I do not understand, Superior."

"No, you don't, but you will." Xemnas dropped his hands, and Saïx resisted the urge to work his chin to get the soreness out of it. "Return to your duties, VII. There is still much to be done."

With that, Xemnas turned around and walked out of the room, leaving Saïx staring after him in the silent room, the empty place where his heart used to be burning like his face had done all those years ago.