MANDATORY AUTHOR'S NOTE: I AM MORE SORRY THAN I HAVE EVER BEEN FOR THE RIDICULOUSLY LATE UPDATE OMGGGGGGG. It's just that I got wrapped up in my life and work and stuff, and getting ready for an anime convention, and BLAH. But the chapter is HERE, it is finally HERE. Please enjoy.
To theyoungflute13: I am so sorry this wasn't out by your birthday. I tried. I really did. –cries- Please accept it as a late birthday present! Happy birthday! My b-day is actually on October 30. I'll be 22 years old, holy poopoli! –dies- Anyway, please enjoy the chapter!
DISCLAIMER: This disclaimer applies to the entire story. Kingdom Hearts and any and all things having to do with it do not belong to me. However, the plot and plot events are entirely MINE, along with the band Destiny's Embrace, the use of the word Hikari as a name, and the characters' personalities. I See Stars is not my band, and I use the lyrics from one of the songs on their brand new album in this chapter. The song is called Murder Mitten, and it is so good, you HAVE to listen to it while reading this chapter!
NOTES: This story is rated M. This chapter has a bit of violence and other things in it. Please prepare your mind and heart for what is going to occur.
"I'm so bored . . . What should we do?"
"As our first official game of the Summer? Beats me, Kai. You're always the one with the bright ideas."
"Yeah, Sora, but you're older than me. This is our last Summer before middle school, so I think you should be the one to pick the game."
The light was failing on Destiny Islands, setting everything ablaze in a warm, orange glow. The two teenagers, Sora and Kairi, were ambling down the street to their homes after a long day at the beach. Technically, they were both supposed to be heading home by now, but knowing how rebellious Kairi could be, Sora was prepared to stay out as late as she wanted. After all, it was the first official day of the Summer.
Now, about Sora being the older one, that was true. He was the eldest by six months out of the pair of friends, but he was by no means a "leader." Kairi usually was the one to come up with ideas for fun things to do, and now that she wanted him to do it, he was feeling a bit anxious. What if the game he picked was stupid? What if she thought he was stupid? He'd had a crush on her all school year, and it would be a nightmare for her to think badly of him.
"Well . . ." The brunette scratched the back of his spiky-haired head and grinned at his friend. "We could play one last game of Hot Lava Monster at the playground?"
"But . . . That's all the way back at school," Kairi protested, though the gleam in her eyes showed Sora that she was liking the thought. "We'll miss curfew!"
"Oh, please, Kai," Sora chuckled, taking a few steps backward. "You know as well as I do that you don't care about curfew. Let's go!"
The two preteens made it back to their now-empty school in record time, dashing across the rocks on the playground, laughing merrily. This was to be their last time setting foot upon the elementary school grounds, and while they felt sad, they felt free. Childhood was almost behind them, and this one last game was going to be a memory to hold on to.
"Okay, so all of the rocks on the ground are lava," Sora explained, gesturing with his hands. "All of the play structures are safe."
"All right," Kairi said, panting slightly from running. She played with a lock of her chin-length crimson hair. "And how long can I be on the lava at one time if I fall?"
"Ten seconds, or else you'll burn up," the twelve-year-old boy replied. "And if you burn up, you become the new lava monster."
"Okay!" Kairi chirped. "So who's gonna be the monster first?"
The wicked grin that spread across the brunette boy's face was all the answer Kairi needed. Sora started counting obnoxiously, and she booked it for the slide nearest her, screaming and laughing girlishly. The best friends chased each other around and around the playground for what felt like hours, until the sunlight had faded and the stars lit their activities with twinkling jollity. It wasn't until Kairi tripped on her own two feet and went sprawling onto the gravel that their game slowed to a halt.
"Kairi!" Sora cried worriedly. "Are you okay?!"
The redhead's answer was to start up a wail so fierce and so loud that Sora nearly had to clap his hands over his eardrums. She rolled onto her back and cried and cried and cried, tears and snot mingling, dripping off of her cherubic face.
Sora fell to his knees beside her, looking distraught. "Don't cry, Kai! It's just a scrape . . ."
"It hurts," she wailed. "Sora, it hurts."
"Come on," Sora insisted. "I'll carry you home."
"Huh?" Kairi sniffled.
Sora smiled encouragingly and stood up, turning his back to her. He pointed at his shoulders. "Hop onto my back. I'll carry you home. Your parents are probably worried, anyway."
"B-But what about our game?" Kairi whimpered.
"I don't care about the game anymore, Kai," Sora said sincerely, no trace of falsehood in his eyes. "Now, come on. I'll give you a piggyback ride, and then your mom can get you a Band-Aid."
Kairi frowned and then smiled. "Okay . . . But you'd better not drop me!"
Sora shot her a look. "Don't even say that. I would never hurt you."
"Yeah?" Kairi challenged as she clambered onto the boy's back. "What about the time you threw that plastic cup at me at my birthday party?"
"That doesn't count," Sora said, hooking his arms underneath her legs and heading off the playground, toward home. "I wasn't looking, and I was aiming for the trash can."
"Yes, it does too count!" Kairi cried. "You bopped me right on the nose, and I had a nosebleed for a whole hour!"
"That's a lie! It was only for ten minutes!"
"If you don't admit that I'm right all the time, and you're always wrong, then I'm going to pull your hair!"
"Go ahead," Sora sniffed. "You can hurt me all you want."
"Fine." Kairi set about pulling on his spikes as hard as she could, but all Sora did was laugh. Getting frustrated, Kairi smacked him on the side of the head playfully. "I give up! Why are you laughing at me?"
"Beacause, Kai," Sora said. "You're funny."
"Fine ,if I'm so funny, then you can put me down."
"No way! Your leg is hurt, you said so!"
"Nope, it's all better. Put me down!"
"Never!" Sora set off at a run, so that Kairi nearly fell off of his back and was forced to throw her arms around his neck from behind. She squealed with delight until finally, he slowed his pace and let her get down onto her feet. Still giggling, she dusted herself off and smiled up at him.
"Just kidding, Sora," Kairi said. "Pick me back up."
Sora's jaw dropped and he shook his head. "No way. Let's just get home!" He grabbed tight hold of her hand and started dragging her down the streetlit road, ignoring her pleas for him to carry "the queen of being right" home. Eventually, Kairi gave up and walked alongside him quietly. After a short time, she cleared her throat.
"What, Your Majesty?" he teased.
"You're . . . You're still holding my hand . . ."
Sora blushed so hard that he began to sweat a little bit. Being the stubborn boy he was, he only picked up his walking pace and tightened is grip on her fingers.
"Of course I am," he said firmly. "It's for your own protection. Without me, you'd be tripping and falling all over the place."
"Oh, I would be, would I?"
"Yes," Sora replied. "You would. Now, be quiet, and just let me protect you."
At that, Kairi shut her mouth, and Sora continued to blush. They walked on in silence, and soon, the gates to Kairi's adoptive family's estate came into view. As they did, the twelve-year-old boy slowed his steps.
"Is something wrong, Sora?" his eleven-year-old female friend queried.
"Kai . . . I'm really sorry," he said guiltily, gazing at the sidewalk somberly.
"The cup . . . At your birthday party . . . I didn't mean to hit you with it."
"Oh, gosh, Sora," Kairi tittered nervously. "I'm not actually mad about that. I was just joking with you."
Sora nodded, and then said, "I'll always protect you, Kairi. You know that, right?"
Kairi looked him up and down in bewilderment. "Jeez, Sora . . . Did you fall down and hit your head? You're being weird."
"I am not!" Sora cried, and thus the playfully arguing began again, ending with Sora chasing Kairi all the way up to her front door.
Kairi gazed up at Sora with trepidation, fearing for not only her life, but Sora's sanity. She didn't want to believe that Sora would carry out Xemnas's instructions, but honestly? Kairi didn't know Sora as well as she had thought she did. She gulped, feeling Roxas's arms tighten around her, and she closed her eyes. Would the next sound she heard be a gunshot?
A gunshot was indeed the next sound to be heard, but the path of the bullet was what was unexpected. When Kairi didn't feel any sort of pain, her eyes snapped open in time to see Sora whirling around to shoot Xemnas's second-in-command, and then there was silence.
Xemnas was lying prone in front of Kairi's lame leg, the blood from her wound soaking the side of his face. His eyes stared unblinking up at her, and she quickly turned away, burying her face in Roxas's shirt. They were safe. They were going to be okay.
Sora quickly set the gun on the floor next to the bodies of the men he had just killed and knelt beside Kairi's leg. His facial expression was hard and determined, but in his eyes, Kairi could see a thousand emotions whirling. The boy was tortured by all the things he had done, and Kairi could tell.
"Sora, you've got to leave that blade in her leg," Roxas cried when Sora reached fro the knife handle.
Sora gulped, looking pale, and then nodded. When he pulled his hand back, Kairi could see that it was shaking.
"Right," he said breathlessly. "Then . . . Let's get her up, and get out to my car. Then we can drive her to the hospital. How hurt are you? Can you walk?"
"Well, aren't you guys a sight for sore eyes? I expected people to die tonight, but I didn't expect it would be my hitmen. Tsk, tsk. Last time I hire anyone to do my job for me."
Kairi felt tears fill her eyes and dismay darken her heart. How could she have been so blind and stupid? How could she have forgotten who the real enemy was?
"Riku," Sora growled darkly, scrabbling to his feet. He moved in front of Roxas and Kairi, who were struggling upward as well.
"The one and only," the silver-haired muscular man said, throwing his arms wide and grinning. "Feels like it's been forever, huh?"
"Can't say it's a welcome reunion," Roxas muttered, keeping his arms around Kairi to support her.
Kairi kept her eyes lowered, feeling simultaneously agonized and overwhelmed. She was terrified. Not only was Riku here, but behind him stood her other enemies Zexion, Axel, and Demyx—and all three of them were aiming weapons directly at her.
Kairi, Roxas, and Sora weren't out of the woods yet.
"What should I do with you, Kairi?" Riku said thoughtfully, crossing his arms over his chest. "You've really cost me a lot of time and money."
"Don't even bother speaking to her," Sora snarled, throwing one arm out to the side. "Just leave her alone for once, you sick bastard."
Riku's eyebrows shot up and without a word, he jerked his head in the direction of Demyx. Demyx pulled the trigger on his weapon and the gunshot rang out. Kairi screamed bloody murder, sure as Hell that she was going to die, and then the worst happened.
Roxas's arms went slack and he crumpled to the ground. Subsequently, Kairi staggered as agony shot up the leg that had Xemnas's knife sticking out of it, but none of it mattered. She was still screaming, and not because of physical pain.
"Roxas!" Kairi wailed, tears pouring out of her eyes like twin waterfalls. Sora was at her side, the two of them falling to their knees beside the coughing, gurgling Roxas.
Roxas's cerulean eyes rolled about in his head, and he reached both of his hands out. Kairi and Sora each gripped one, gazing down at the gaping wound in the center of the blonde's chest.
"This isn't fucking happening," Sora choked out painfully, his teeth clenched. "You're not gonna leave me, man. You aren't doing this to me, bro."
Roxas tried again and again to speak, tears leaking out of the corners of his rapidly-darkening eyes, and Kairi nearly lost it. She'd thought he was going to be okay. She'd thought that with the Organization gone, they were all going to be okay. Why the fuck was this happening to them?
"Oh, this is fuckin' ridiculous," Axel said. "Can't we just kill them all and go do something else? This is boring me."
"That would be too easy, Axel," Demyx snickered.
"You're only sayin' that because you got to kill someone already," Axel protested.
"Shut up," Riku snapped. "You'll get your chance to have some fun later. Right now, I'm hungry, and the sight of this is making me nauseous. So, Zexion, you come with me to the kitchen. Axel, you get rid of the body. Demyx, you lock those two idiots in a room somewhere upstairs, and we'll deal with them later."
Kairi latched on as tight as she could to Roxas's cold body, her body trembling with sorrow. He hadn't even gotten a chance to speak-hadn't even had the ability to do so. His eyes were gaping wide open, staring at nothing any longer. Kairi hoped that on the other side, those eyes were looking into Namine's.
Sora growled at Demyx like a lion protecting its kin, practically hovering over Roxas and Kairi simultaneously. Every vein on his corded arm muscles was sticking up from the strength it was taking to hold himself back. If it weren't for the fact that Demyx was armed, Kairi knew that Sora would probably launch himself across the room in a heartbeat at him.
"Stay the fuck away from my cousin," Sora threatened, his voice sounding laced with agony. "You stay the fuck away."
"See, that would be a valid threat if I wasn't armed, jackass," Demyx snapped before rearing his gun hand back and striking Sora across the face with a forceful blow. The sound of the pistol connecting with the side of Sora's skull made Kairi jump and scream as she watched Sora collapse like a broken doll. He was unconscious.
Kairi watched as Demyx grabbed Sora under the arms and started dragging him up the stairs (and none too gently, mind). Feeling dismayed that the knife in her calf put her out of commission, she turned her attentions back to Roxas. Dear, sweet Roxas . . . He hadn't deserved what had happened to him. The beating, the death . . . Namine . . . God, why did she have to be at the base of everyone's demise? Tears cascaded down her cheeks and she choked on her own sobs. Brushing the bangs away from his handsome face, she closed Roxas's eyes and bit her lower lip.
Why was this happening? Why was this all happening? The Organization was defeated, so why couldn't it all just be over? Why couldn't Roxas have made it out alive? And how were Sora and she going to make it out alive themselves? With her leg, and Sora being unarmed, how much of a chance did they really stand?
In the next room, Zexion and Riku were being obnoxiously loud about God-knows-what, and beside her, Axel was watching her cry with a mixed expression upon his face. It was as if he were trying to give her a moment with Roxas one last time, but he really didn't want to.
"All right, Red," he muttered after a while, grabbign her shoulder roughly and starting to drag her away.
Panicking, Kairi held tighter to Roxas's stiff body. She didn't want to let him go. She hadn't been the closest with him, but Sora had. Sora had loved his cousin with all of his heart, and when he came back from unconsciousness and remembered that Roxas had been shot, he was going to be devastated. Not only that, but Roxas dying was further proving the fact that Kairi was nothing more than a problem-a bothersome problem that only brought more harm than good. She hoped Riku killed her tonight. She hoped to God he gave her what she rightly deserved for letting so many people die.
"Let go of him, or I'll pull that knife out of your leg," Axel warned lowly in her ear, tightening his grip on her shoulder. "And if I do that, you don't need me to explain to you what could happen."
"I don't care," Kairi whispered, tears clinging to her lashes like jewels. "Do whatever you want."
"Axel," Riku trilled from the kitchen. "I hope you're doing what I asked you to do."
Axel rolled his eyes and dragged Kairi forcibly away from Roxas, handing her over to Demyx so he could take Roxas. She didn't even bother to struggle. Not that she really could, anyway; the knife that was stuck hilt-deep into her leg was not only going numb at the toes, but it was covered in blood and aching in pain. Gritting her teeth against said pain, Kairi allowed herself to be dragged up the stairs at a pace much too quick for her wounded state.
In any case, she deserved it.
Demyx tossed her into the dark room that was the master bedroom, and when she landed on her hurt leg, she cried out in agony. Rolling onto her back, she watched the redheaded man throw her a wicked smirk before shutting the door. Looking to her left, she saw that Sora had been laid out on the king-size bed on his back, still unconscious. There was a loud pounding sound against the door a few times, and then darkness and silence swallowed her whole.
Kairi felt an overwhelming sense of loss and sadness and dissolved into a wave of tears that she didn't even bother to quiet. She couldn't believe that Roxas was gone. She couldn't believe that he was actually gone. Did life have no merit or standing to these people? That people like Riku and Xemnas and all of them even existed was an awful thought.
And Sora . . . Poor Sora . . . After everything he'd done for her, this was his reward.
Just . . . Fuck it.
Under your feet is the ground to break
You only get what you take
So don't just sit and watch the atrophy of it
Hours passed, the only sounds coming from the ticking on the clock by the bed. It was nearing midnight now, and Kairi was still lying on the floor. She had been staring up at the dark ceiling, mourning Roxas's death and crying until she had no more energy to do so. Her throat ached, her head was pounding, and her heart felt like it had been dipped in acid. She had been going over the events of her life in her head, trying to pinpoint the exact reason why her existence caused the deaths and pain of so many people, and she was only serving to make herself more and more upset.
At exactly 12:00 am, the weeping started. It was quiet, it was gut-wrenching, and it was Sora. Kairi's hand flew to her mouth and she bit down on her knuckle while she listened to his cries grow deeper and louder, signifying his increasing despondency. Kairi wanted to go to him, but at the same time, this was her fault and she knew it was probably best if she left him be.
But the longer her cried, the harder his sobs became, and she couldn't take it anymore.
I have stood back for way too long
You are broken, you are so broken
Kairi rolled onto her stomach and began an awkward crawl over to the bed, mustering up all of her strength to pull herself up onto the mattress. Sora was lying curled up on his side and as she clambered over to him, he turned to face her, burrowing into her chest and continuing his inconsolable weeping. Kairi combed her fingers through his hair, her skin brushing against the wetness of his tears, and her heart shattered. She'd never seen Sora cry like this before, even when they were children. This was beyond anything she thought she'd ever have to experience.
"Shh," Kairi soothed him. "Shh . . ."
"He's gone," he whispered. "Gone."
"I know, baby," Kairi said, her voice cracking with emotion. "I'm so, so sorry."
Suddenly, Sora seemed to jump away from her. He rolled off of the bed and practically lunged across the room. The first thing to go was the lamp (which wasn't even turned on), flying across the room and crashing against the wall. Sora's rage was evident as he blew across the room like a living tornado. He destroyed not only the lamp, but also the bedside table, the dresser, its drawers, and all its contents, and a vase. He threw clothes everywhere, screaming and roaring curse words at the top of his lungs.
Kairi watched all of this ensue from her place on the bed with her hands covering her mouth. She'd seen Sora angry before, but never this angry. The look on his face was terrifying—she could see in his eyes that his mind was nowhere near all there. Sora was beyond upset at this point.
Eventually, after the entire room had been destroyed, Sora began to punch the wall. He punched it over and over and over, until it was smeared with his blood and a small hole had opened up. He cursed again, shaking his hand out and wincing. His tear-stained face was stained red with his anger and then—after wiping his nose with the back of his hurt hand—with blood. It was at this time that Kairi couldn't take it anymore. She couldn't watch him self-destruct.
"Sora, stop!" she shrieked when he moved to punch a clean section of wall again.
"Fuckin' horse shit!" Sora snarled, whirling on her as if she were his worst enemy. "What the fuck do you want? Just leave me alone!"
Kairi lowered her gaze. She deserved that. She was the cause of all this, after all.
"I'm . . . I'm sorry—"
"Do you even realize what's going on here?" Sora hissed, looking out of his mind with ire. His knuckles were busted open from hitting the wall so many times, slicking his fingers with blood—the fingers he was angrily pointing at her.
"I . . . I do r-realize," Kairi stammered, feeling her guilt wash over her.
"This . . . This is all happening because of you. People are dead because of you." He started to pace. "I can't even go to school or to work or play with my band or do anything, because so many people want to kill you. And now my cousin—my best friend, practically my brother—is fucking dead. He is fucking dead. All because I chose to protect you."
Kairi erupted into tears and screamed back at him, "I didn't ask you to do that, Sora! I didn't ask you to go through all this shit for me! You're the one who decided to do that!"
Sora's eyes blazed. "I am not taking the blame for this. All I've ever done is sacrifice for you, and protect you, and whatever I fucking could do to make you happy." He ticked them off on his fingers, sounding almost manic.
Kairi gritted her teeth as the pain in her leg suddenly increased tenfold. She pulled her knee to her chest and wept bitterly, staring down at the hilt of the knife. If she looked closely enough, she could just barely see the tip of the blade on the other side of her calf. Xemnas's knife had completely skewered her muscle, and the only thing keeping it from bleeding uncontrollably was the weapon itself.
"I didn't say this was your fault, Sora," Kairi sobbed miserably. "It's my fault, okay? Isn't that what you want to hear? It's my fault. All of it. Everything. The abuse, the rapes, my parents abandoning me, my selfishness . . . That's why I tried to kill myself, remember? I nearly succeeded, too." Her sobs intensified and she buried her face in her hands. "Oh, God . . . Why didn't I just die back then? Why didn't I just try again when I failed? They'd both still be alive if I . . . If I had just . . ."
"S-Stop that . . ." Sora's voice was a choked whisper. "Don't . . . Don't you fucking say that. Don't you ever fucking say that about yourself ever again."
Kairi looked up, still weeping as Sora came to sit beside her on the bed. He held her face tenderly in his hands and searched her eyes. The look of pure, unadulterated wrath had faded from his face, and now Kairi wasn't the only one crying.
"You're not leaving me, too, you hear me?" Sora murmured, pressing a gentle kiss to her lips once, twice, thrice. "Never. I'm sorry all right? I'm so sorry. I shouldn't have said those things. I shouldn't have."
"But you're right!" Kairi wailed, placing her hands on his wrists and squeezing them. "Roxas and Namine were killed in Riku's attempts to get to me. They would be alive if I—"
"Stop. It," Sora pleaded desperately. "I take back everything I said, all right? I wasn't the only one sacrificing myself for you. We all did. Vani, Rox, me . . . All of us knew what was going on, and that's why we were in the gang. We wanted to protect you."
"But why?" Kairi asked. "I'm not worth all that. I'm not! All I ever do is make people angry. Something about me makes people want to hurt me, and . . . Maybe I should just die . . ."
"Knock it the fuck off, Kai, okay? I'm starting to get pissed off again." His tone was a warning. "Roxas and Namine didn't deserve to die, and neither do you. You're good. You're the most wonderful thing in my life, and I won't have anything or anyone taking you away from me. I haven't fought this hard and this long to keep you safe, only to have you off yourself and slip right through my fingers. I love you, Kairi. I fucking love you, and I won't let you go. Not for a second."
I can see that we may be running out of time
The curtain's falling in slow motion
I can feel that the sense has left your mind
The curtain's falling in slow motion
Kairi's sobs were muffled by his lips as he kissed her repeatedly. She was extremely overwhelmed right now. With everything going on, with Roxas, with Sora . . . It was all nearly too much for her to take. And now they had been locked in Roxas's parents' old bedroom, and whenever Riku and his minions decided to come for her, they were probably going to die. And now, even though she had been the cause of Roxas's death, Sora was kissing her and crying and telling her how much he loved her.
She didn't deserve him.
She didn't deserve him at all.
But when she finally dragged her lashes up to look into his eyes through the darkness, she didn't want to believe that it was true. Because God damn, she deserved to be happy, didn't she? She deserved to finally be the one who was chosen. She deserved for someone to look at her and for once, just fucking once, think she was too beautiful and too precious to hurt.
"All anyone's ever done is hurt me," Kairi murmured, leaning forward to rest her forehead on his bony shoulder. "You're the only one who hasn't."
"What about this past year?" Sora responded. "I treated you like shit."
"And I forgave you. You did what you had to do to protect me."
"But that doesn't excuse the things I said to you. The things I did . . . My involvement in this caused Axel, Demyx, and Zexion to kidnap you and . . . And to r-rape you . . ."
"And I never blamed you for that."
"You should have."
Kairi sat up. "Well, I'm not blaming you, Sora. I couldn't. Not after the loss I've caused you, and not after the things you've given up for me."
Sora heaved a great sigh and looked down at his lap.
"Kairi . . . There's . . . You . . ." He sighed again. "You would blame me . . . If you knew the whole truth."
Confused, Kairi frowned and wiped stray tears away from her eyes. "The truth? What truth? What do you mean?"
"About me. About Riku. About . . . About the real reason why I had to protect you."
Kairi's eyebrows shot up. What could he be talking about? How could there be more to the story? Hadn't Sora had to join the gang because he'd known that Riku was abusing her, and Riku had threatened to kill her if Sora didn't isolate her? Unless there really was more . . . She kept her mouth shut, fearing that if she spoke, he might not tell her whatever it was he was hiding.
Before anything could be said, however, the door to the bedroom slowly creaked open. In the doorframe stood Riku, Axel, Demyx, and Zexion, and they all looked pretty smug with themselves. Riku crossed his arms over his chest and shook his head slowly.
"How about you leave the honors to me, Sora?" the silverette chuckled. "After all, I'm the one who did the honors back then. So it's only right that I should be the one to tell her just how much I really took away from her . . . Isn't it?"
What . . . Was going on?
Why did you go, I can't watch
So quiet and peaceful
Where did I go wrong
Say you can stay, I can't look away
A/N: All right, so the plot thickens even MORE. What the heck, man? Why do I keep doing this to you guys? Well, because I'm evil. And I truly am sorry about Roxas, but . . . It had to be done. I know it probably doesn't make sense, but to me it does. It had to be done as the final tip of the mountain to show just how much Sora was sacrificing for her. Because if you think about it, he's given up everything he has for the girl he's loved since seventh grade, and has been best friends with since third grade. Yes, he treated her like dirt for the better part of a year and a half, but he didn't WANT to do that to her. It KILLED him to do that to her. Kairi really didn't have tangible grasp of his sacrifice, and now she does. She finally sees just how much Sora loves her, and how much she CAN be loved. It's all very sad, though. I cried a little bit while writing it, waaah.
Anyway! I'll see you guys for the next chapter! Which will have mature content in it, so beware.