The Keyholder

a/n greetings everyone, this here is my first foray into posting on fanfiction, so I humbly introduce myself as TheTwinPhoenixes. The story you are about to read takes place a few years after command. Or does it? The piece will cover multiple endings and involves time travel. Have fun!

Also Star Fox and all respective characters belong to their respective owners and all that legal jazz. Also Sonata Arctica owns Sonata Arctica and the song Victoria's Secret.

Chapter 1: From Now on Every Day

Three days had passed since the accident. Fox McCloud, former leader of the Star Fox mercenary unit, had lost everything in the world he held close to his heart. A simple assassination meant for him went horribly wrong, and it took out his wife Krystal and their unborn son who was to be named Marcus. Fox hadn't slept for the last 72 hours, and it was beginning to take its toll.

"God damn it! Why must everything I love be ripped from me?! First my mother, then my father, now my wife and unborn child are taken." Fox thought, in utter mental agony. He stood in the kitchen of the house he and Krystal shared, alone and with tears streaming down his face. A knock came from the front door.

"Fox, I know you're in there, please just open up the door!" A familiar voice called.

Fox slowly walked up to the door and peered out the peephole. It was none other than his longtime friend, Falco Lombardi and his fiancé Katt Monroe. Fox let out a deep and heavy hearted sigh and turned the deadbolt and unlocked the door.

"Come in." Fox muttered almost inaudibly.

Falco pushed his way through the door and embraced his friend.

"Fox, words can't describe how sorry we are for your loss. She was a great friend and a wonderful wife; she would have been a fantastic mother" Said Falco trying to console the grieving vulpine.

Fox was at a loss for words; he returned the embrace and held Falco tightly. While fighting back the tears he said, "She was my everything. I feel so lost right now. I left the mercenary life behind and we all agreed, disbanding Star Fox was the best decision. Why do I have to be the target for everyone in the damned Lylat!"

Falco exchanged a glance with Katt and she nodded. Fox let go of Falco and then Katt pulled out a small box.

"Look Fox, I know the last thing you want to even think about is what would have been. Perhaps if you took a visit to the memorial site and her grave you might find something." The feline said.

Fox simply nodded in agreement. "Come on buddy, we'll drive you there." Falco said putting a comforting hand on the vulpine's shoulder.

As the three drove throughout the Cornerian countryside, Fox started to wander into the recesses of his mind. He remembered the day seven months ago when he first heard that he was going to be a father.

"Fox! What are you doing home so early? Aren't you supposed to be at the Academy until four?" Krystal asked.

"Peppy decided to stop in and take over my classes for the rest of the day. It's not every day you get the General of the Cornerian Defense Force walking into the academy to teach piloting skills." Fox replied with a smile.

"Actually I'm quite glad that you're home so early then. Come on and have a seat, we have to pick out some new furniture!" the cerulean furred vixen cheered.

Fox at the time had no idea what was going on and he just followed along to make his beautiful wife happy. Krystal pulled out a data pad and the two foxes began scrolling through small dressers and then Fox noticed something strange. "Why are we shopping for children's dressers and a crib? Are you trying to send me a message of some things that need to happen?" Fox chuckled and gave Krystal a fanged grin.

Krystal laughed and grabbed Fox's hand and placed it upon her belly. The vixen smiled softly and her eyes glimmered. "The thing is, some things have already happened."

Fox's jaw dropped. He sat there wondering about all of the things he was going to need to prepare for. Krystal leaned over and embraced him in a loving hug and whispered in his ear, "Don't worry about a thing."

Fox came to and snapped back into the harsh reality where he lost his beloved family. "I am so sorry." He thought as a tear rolled down his muzzle.

Falco decided he was going to try to kill the silence with a little music. He turned the dial and the song Victoria's Secret by Sonata Arctica came on. The chorus played and it struck a chord with Fox.

'Dancing on the path and singing

Now you got away

You can reach the goals that you have set

From now on every day

There is now way you would go back now

Oh no those days are past

Life is waiting for the one who loves to live

And it's not a secret'

This was one of Krystal's favorite songs. As the song concluded the car had arrived at the Cornerian Military Cemetery. Fox, Katt, and Falco stepped out of the car and were greeted by Peppy who was in his dress uniform for the military. Slippy was standing with him dabbing his eyes with a handkerchief. "Fox, I know what you're going through son. It's not easy to move on but time heals all wounds." The old hare stated.

"Thanks Peppy. I just wish it would have been me in that car instead of her. Now I understand what Dad felt." Fox somberly replied.

Slippy began to cry and walked over to Katt and Falco. The hare and the vulpine began to walk down the path that led to the McCloud family mausoleum. It was here where Fox's mother and father were laid to rest, even if their bodies weren't physically there. Fox put a hand on the headstone belonging to his parents. "Hey Mom, Dad, please watch over Krystal and the baby for me. Take care of them until we meet again." Fox thought.

Peppy put a hand on Fox's back and gently patted him. "Fox, I know I shouldn't be contemplating what I'm about to tell you." Peppy began.

Fox's ears perked up and he stared at his old mentor and father figure with quite a look of curiosity.

"What are you talking about?" Fox asked.

"After we led the assault on the Anglar Emperor in the Venom Sea, I managed to extract a small chest from the ruins of the underwater palace after it surfaced. Within that chest, was this." Peppy pulled out a small key, shining gold and adorned with jewels.

"This is known as the Key of Destiny Fox. This artifact will allow the user to go back into the past and relive events. Think about that. I'm not sayin you should rewrite history to benefit yourself entirely, because I know that's not your style. What I do know is that if you were given such an opportunity to rewrite the past week, I know you'd do what's right. Krys was taken from us too soon as was your unborn kid. After all you've done for this system, this government, you deserve to be happy. The key is simple in design, it fits any lock, but when the door opens, a portal is created and time freezes. Once this happens, there is no turning back. This timeline will double back on itself and move on starting from whenever the bearer thinks of." The hare concluded his explanation.

"Wait a minute, wouldn't this be something the government would be keeping a secret? How the hell did you manage to keep it in your possession?" Fox inquired.

"The less the government knows the better. I brought it back concealed and kept it in a private vault of mine while I did some research. Once I found out everything I needed to know and confirmed it was the Key, I did plan on revealing it to the other heads of the CDF, but I felt this was a more worthwhile cause." Peppy said patting Fox on the shoulder.

Fox gave Peppy a long hug and thanked him profusely. "Peppy, if this works I swear I'll make it up to you on the other side." Fox said with a new found sense of direction.

"Just make this situation right Fox." Fox's mentor said.

Fox departed the mausoleum and came across his friends waiting at the car. Katt spoke up first. "Fox, just make sure that when you go back, no one but you knows about the key. If anyone gets their hands on that relic, there's no telling what would happen to the Lylat system." Slippy spoke up next, "Just make sure you protect your family Fox." Falco walked up and extended his hand towards Fox. "I guess this is goodbye for now eh Foxie?" the avian said with a smug look on his face.

"That it is Falco, but don't worry, we'll be seeing each other real soon." The vulpine replied.

Fox got into the car and sped off back towards his house. The chorus from the Sonata Arctica song still resonating through his mind as he looked towards Solar setting over the horizon. Fox sang, "You can reach the goals that you have set from now on every day."

A/N: I'm going to try to update this weekly or bi-weekly. But depending on real life situations with my degree, that could be shortened or lengthened. I hope you enjoy, this is my first fanfiction in well over three years so yea, go me. Feel free to leave a review or some constructive criticism, just don't leave angered bashing of my writing, that'll probably get ignored. Final shoutout to Phantomfoxx , K.S. Reynard, Ray85, and general whitefur for the inspiration to begin creative writing again. You folks are awesome. (EDIT, went back and fixed some spacing issues with block text and also gave a bit more insight into why Peppy had the key to begin with. Special thanks to K.S. Reynard's review. Thank you for the help!)