|Posted by Hinata-Snow on August 21, 2013 at 9:55 PM|
The countdown to destruction has begun. Will Jason conquer the final foe?
A/N: This is the second to last chapter. The reason I say this is the Finale is because this is the last chapter to take place in Castle Oblivion. Enjoy, Serenna!
First floor: The entirety of the Organzation realized they had been duped. Again. When Sora first came bursting through the doors of the Castle, Zexion cast an emergency Illusion spell on the entire floor. Sora and his friends looked around briefly, then dashed down into the first basement floor. The Schemer let down the illusion, then they all sat back and watched the fireworks. So everyone was paying attention when Xemnas revealed that was just going to throw them all away when he was done using them. Demyx looked around worriedly at Nobody/people in the room, begging for an answer. "Can't anyone do something about this?" A tense pause filled the room, and then—"I'm going to try something," Xigbar muttered. He walked into the center of the room and sat in a meditative position. Everyone in room seem confused, but whatever Xigbar was doing Luxord caught on, and he did the same thing.
Being the intellectual scientist of Organization, Vexen caught on third and shouted, "Everyone! Transfer your magic into Luxord and Xigbar!" The rest of the Organization, Jason's family, and Serenna got on both sides of the two Nobodies. They lay their hands on the men, and suddenly the air rippled with power…
Second basement floor: Naminé and Roxas looked around as the air became heavy. "What's everyone doing up there?" Roxas asked. Naminé smiled. "Everyone is pitching in to end Xemnas—once and for all."
Fourth basement floor: Meanwhile in Agrabah, Axel lay in an improvised emergency room, wrapped in equally improvised bandages that bound random parts of his body. When the wave of collective energy hit, it caused massive pain to wash over the wounded pyro. Nevertheless, Axel chuckled to himself. "Heh…well Xemnas, it appears the Organization has finally united—against you. But what will we do about the Keybladers?" A brief pause. "And will someone please get me out of here?"
First basement floor: But the very first group of people to feel that raw power were Jason, his group, and of course Xemnas. Jason shivered. "So this is the power of Darkness…I am thankful that I'm on their side." Xemnas raised a disbelieving eyebrow. "You are not even a member of the Organization…no matter. Kingdom Hearts needs me." The Superior raised his arms…and nothing happened. He frowned as he pushed against the wall of power that would not let him leave the Castle. Meanwhile, Jason spared another glance at the timer-clock. "24hrs10mins" it read. The redhead realized that while it still wasn't at the normal flow, it was certainly moving a lot slower than before. «Thanks everyone! I swear I'll pay you all back someday! I won't squander this chance!"» he trumpeted in his head. The chance being: While Xigbar manipulated the space in the Castle so that Xemnas couldn't leave, Luxord manipulated time in the Castle so that it would pass slower. Of course, feats of this scale were not possible without everyone else on the first floor donating power to the two Nobodies.
Once again Xemnas proved why he was the Superior. He switched plans in a split second without even moving a muscle. With his arms still in air Xemnas used his powers to strip Jason of his Organization cloak, leaving him in his regular clothes. These consisted of a light t-shirt and leather pants. As an afterthought he did the same with Itzal and Selene. Selene sported a bright sundress and Itzal was for some reason wearing the same thing as Jason, just darker. "Don't ask," the boy muttered, feeling embarrassed at all the eyes trained on him. "Suffice to say this is not my regular outfit."
Xemnas cleared his throat to bring the attention back on himself. He juggled the three confiscated Organization cloaks in midair, using this display to emphasize his speech. "It occurs to me that though neither of you three are Organization members, that can be arranged." Sora opened his mouth to object but Larxene shushed him. "Now that my old Organization has left me, I will need a new one to serve alongside me as I rule the worlds. Jason, I will offer you second-in-command. Itzal, Selene, you two may become Numbers III and IV. Anyone who wants to remain in my Organization, say so now." Every member of the first and so far only generation of Organization XIII made their decision known by increasing the power restricting Xemnas. This included Larxene, Xion, Naminé, and Axel, none of who were a part of the first floor initiative. "That disappoints me…what of you, Jason, Itzal, Selene? Will you join me in efforts to rule the worlds?" Jason watched his cloak dancing in Xemnas's grasp.
Jason turned around to see Sora wielding his Keyblade in an odd fashion: the brunet was gripping the spine of the key in one hand, and he held the guard out as if offering it to Jason. It took a while for the redhead to realize that's exactly what Sora was doing. "All of you. Don't listen to Xemnas!" Selene shook her head. "I never was. I'd never join him." Itzal nodded to show he agreed with his childhood friend. Sora locked eyes with Jason. "You want to marry Larxene? I'll wed you two myself. Just…Don't go to Xemnas." Larxene's expression told Sora that he was going to pay for speaking those words later.
Jason pursed his lips, worried. He had picked Light earlier, against Marluxia. But this decision seemed more real, with a Keyblade being offered to him on one side and his Organization cloak on the other. «Can a man of Light really live with a woman of Darkness? Well…there's only one way to find out.» Jason turned around and gripped the handle of the Keyblade. The minute he made contact with the Keyblade, a mysterious voice filled his head:
In a few years time, two who are one will enter your life.
They will herald the arrival of a woman with a heart of stone
And soul stained black. She will try to drown the worlds in Dark.
You are not ready to face her. Your heart is not strong enough.
In order to beat her, your heart needs to always echo true.
When that time comes, a Keyblade will be yours. Be safe…
Two words snapped Jason back to reality. Xemnas lowered his arms, and Etheral Blades slid out of the sleeves of his cloak. "That it would come to this…the time has come for Interdiction." Everyone drew their weapons and rushed at him, but before they could reach him Xemnas he crashed his blades together and a blinding light filled the room.
When the light faded, Jason opened his eyes and looked around. Everyone seemed to be accounted for. His gaze hit the center of the room, where there was now a giant throne. Sitting in this throne was an imposing figure entirely covered in armor. On the brow of the armor-clad man rested a crown.
"That's Xemnas!" Jason looked behind him to see Sora already wielding his Oathkeeper Keyblade. "I have fought him in this form before," the brunet continued. "He can't move so he's a sitting duck but he's able to use all the elements!" Jason considered this for a moment. There were times when one had to swallow their pride, and he realized this was one of them. "I'm the one Xemnas wants, but…I need your help, Sora. You're the only one who's fought against him." Sora recongnized that Jason was humbling himself and accepted his help. "Forgetting someone?" Both boys turned around to see an amused Riku standing behind them. "Of course I wouldn't forget you, Riku!" huffed an indignant Sora. "You fought alongside me!" The silver-haired teen summoned Way to Dawn. "That's all I needed to hear." Xemnas on his throne summoned a giant blade. Without hesitation the three boys dashed at the King of Nothingness.
When Sora said that Xemnas could use all the elements, he was serious. Nothing, Space, Wind, Ice, Earth, Illusion, Moon, Fire, Water, Time, Flower, Lightning, and Light. All at his disposal. Currently the Nothing and Illusion powers were being used to fuel the armor, the Space and Time powers were tied up isolating Castle. This left 9 elements for seven warriors to defeat. The most powerful element was Light, represented by an orb the size of a beach-ball. The rest of the elements were represented by the weapon that wielded them.
"Woah!" Ventus exclaimed as he narrowly dodged Frozen Pride, the Ice elemental. The Light ball continued to bounced around, damaging almost everything it touched. Almost. "Xion!" The replica looked to see who called her. It was Kairi. "Could you find some way to hold the Light ball?" Xion thought on it. "I'll try." Xion aimed her Keyblade and fired a tractor beam at the Light ball. Kairi approached the rouge energy and laid her hands on it. The Light ball started to become smaller, until Kairi managed to completely absorb it. Eight elements to go.
This gave Larxene an idea and she looked for her own element. She found the a Lightning cloud made of Fourde knives harassing Aqua. Selene, picking up on her mom's vibe, distracted the Lightning cloud by way of spells. "Thanks!" Aqua called. "Blizzaga!" the blunette froze the Earth Skysplitter before grabbing it and smashing it against the ground. Meanwhile, Larxene absorbed the Fourde cloud and unleashed the new power against the Lindworm Wind, obliterating it. Five elements to go: Flower, Ice, Fire, Moon, and Water.
Itzal studied the Eternal Flames with a critical eye. «Those Elements…they are sentient but they don't seem that smart. Maybe they can be fooled.» He removed a rainbow-colored pen form his pen pouch and began to draw on himself. He made sure to not make any mistakes, to not blur any lines. When Itzal was finished he was the splitting image of Axel. Right away the Arpeggio sitar made a beeline to Itzal. «This I did not see coming. At least I know my Shapeshift Pen works.» He unsheathed his Bo staff, hoping it wouldn't hurt too much—and Aqua threw herself in front of him, taking full brunt of the Water Arpeggio. The element became absorbed into Aqua and she collapsed from pain.
Meanwhile, Larxene, Kairi, and Xion had their hands full with the Lunatic claymore while Selene and Ventus fought against the Graceful Dahlia sycthe. No one knew where Frozen Pride went. Currently the Lunatic seemed to hold a grudge against Xion as it kept trying to grind her to dust. "Ahh…Darkly! Bring that claymore towards us!" Selene called to Xion. Larxene giggled and the replica scowled but obeyed. Xion back-tracked towards the Mother/Daughter team, Lunatic continuing to chase her. When she got past them, the two blondes began to charge up power, and at the same shouted: "Sky Claw!" Larxene and Selene fired off two giant claws made of Lightning, which collided with Lunatic before completely destroying it. The Savage Nymph turned to her unrecognized progeny. "How do you know that technique?" Selene paled as she realized she was very close to being busted. "Uh, a little help over here?!" Ventus called as he tried to keep the Dahlia scythe from decapitating him with its Flowerly-evil.
During this interlude Ax-Itzal managed to absorb the Eternal Flame chakras, leaving only Frozen Pride and Graceful Dahlia left. Next, he ran over to the still-unconscious Aqua. «She absorbed her element but it hurt her. This means I can't drop my shapeshift until I expunge the Fire element.» Ax-Itzal removed Aqua's halter top, but only up to the bottom of her breasts. Remember…You're of no use to anyone if you can't see past your own desires. With his father's words in his mind, Ax-Itzal kept his focus on the blunette's bare torso, searching for the wound. When he found it—a series of deep lacerations localized above the left side of her hips—Itzal grabbed the green Curaga pen from his belt and jabbed it into the damaged area. «That probably hurt. But sometimes you need to take these measures.» These words became justified as the lacerations quickly ceased to exist. "Ow…What happened?" Aqua awoke to find Itzal with his hands on her halter top. "You're that blue-haired kid Itzal. Thank you for healing my wounds, but aren't you a little young to have your hands there?" Her statement was met with a shocked, red-faced Itzal: He had yet to drop the Axel shapeshift and Aqua had a point. The incredibly akward moment was delayed by Frozen Pride and Graceful Dahlia flying towards the pair.
Ax-Itzal dodged in time to save his right arm from the Flowery scythe. He spent all of three seconds trying to decide which technique he needed. "Firetooth," he growled. Giant balls of Fire shot out of his hands, all aiming towards Graceful Dahlia. The sycthe managed to slice a couple of the flame balls before it was destroyed under the deluge. With the Fire finally out of his system, Itzal dropped his Axel shapeshift and searched for Aqua—who was single-handedly taking on the Ice elemental, the Frozen Pride shield. She seamlessly weaved through the waves of Ice the shield was sending her, using her Master Keeper Keyblade to inflict damage. "Ha…tough guy, huh?" Aqua panted as she failed to dent Frozen Pride. "Ghost Drive." Itzal blinked, and the next thing he knew there were 6 different Aquas, all hacking and weaving. As he watched her destroy Frozen Pride, the teenaged boy became aware of the fact that his face was turning red again. «Note to self: As I have yet to meet this "Aqua" in my time, I should probably avoid her once I do return. Otherwise, I may do something stupid.» Itzal's hormonal problem grew worse as Aqua looked at him and smiled endearingly.
With all the Elements defeated, the seven warriors turned to see how the battle against Xemnas was going. Only to find nothing there. No Jason, Sora, Riku, Xemnas, not even the throne. Nothing.
Final interlude into the future: At twenty-two years old, Itzal and Ventus were friends again, all past animosity forgotten. Mostly because after they were released from the hospital, Selene sent them back in, making sure the boys knew how pissed she was at them both. Itzal recognized that his childhood friend needed time to cool down. But…now what? Could everyone truly recover from the scars caused by the war? Itzal was sitting on the edge of his home's roof, a bar of sea salt ice cream neglected in his hand. His shaggy, slate-blue hair covered a lot of his face. But the tears running down his face could still be seen…
He looked down to see Aqua looking up up at him, concern lining her face and showing in her deep blue eyes. "You don't have to punish yourself anymore," she said. "I admit I was really angry when I first heard what was happening between you and Ventus. But you both honestly tried to stop, I realize that now." Itzal nodded. It was ironically the reason everything spiraled out of control: he felt that the fastest way to end the conflict was to shut Ventus down A.S.A.P. And Ventus tried to do the same thing. Neither of the boys wanted to admit defeat, so…
Oddly enough, hearing this from Aqua made him feel a lot better. Which made Itzal realize that if he wanted complete closure, he may as well tell her. "Aqua…" the blunette Master jumped onto the rooftop and sat next to him. "Yes?" she asked, her ocean-blue eyes glittering with curiosity. Itzal's voice almost died but he was determined to see it through. "I had the biggest crush on you when I was a teen. I'm not talking about Castle Oblivion. I'm talking about our first meeting, my parents hired you to keep an eye on me. You treated me so well…you have such a beautiful smile…I thought you were an angel." Having ended, Itzal fell silent. Aqua was a lot older than him—married with children, to boot. But the Heart never listened. Eventually the crush did fade, but the experience made Itzal take a critical look at his own Heart. "How sweet." Aqua planted a kiss on the boy's cheek. "Terra and I are happy to have Ventus back. Thank you for not hurting him." It was true. Between the two boys Itzal ended up hurt a lot worse, because near the end of the battle, Itzal had held back. In his mind was Selene, Aqua, Terra, River and her siblings. How they would react if Ventus never came back. Aqua ruffled Itzal's head. "We've missed you at our house, Itzal." She jumped down from the roof to the ground and began to walk home. Suddenly, she stopped. "And…River's missed you." As Zexion's son watched Aqua walk away again, he realized everything would be fine.
First floor: The group dashed upstairs, hoping to find the warriors missing in action: Jason, Riku, and Sora. As they entered the floor they passed a timer-clock: 6hrs12mins. "Where is my son?" Nicole shouted. Kairi shook her head sadly. "We don't know. Both my best friends are missing as well." In the room was now: Organization XIII plus Axel, Roxas, Naminé, and Serenna; Jason's family with Eileen reassuring her parents; and of course the Basement group which consisted of Kairi, Aqua, Ventus, Selene, Itzal, Xion and Larxene. Xion ran into the waiting arms of her best friends Roxas and Axel. "Watch the ribs, Xion." Axel groaned. "They still feel broken." Selene whistled innocently. None of the room's inhabitants wanted to say it: That if Xemnas was missing, along with Jason, Riku, and Sora—maybe they were gone forever.
The Dark Realm: Deep in the gloom that pervaded the Realm, there was a plateau. On this plateau Jason stood alone, watching the occasional Heartless amble by on the plains below. The redhead wasn't alone for long, however. Out of thin air he appeared: Amber eyes, mocha skin, a head as smooth as can be. Xehanort. "Young boy, I am impressed that you have become such a pain in my neck," he rasped. "But unless you want Terra to die, you will do as I say." Jason didn't answer, just grinned. "Oh, you mean this guy?" Xehanort looked behind him to find Riku and Sora, with Terra over the latter's shoulder. It was then that Xehanort realized that the black Organization cloaks that he(as Xemnas) had confiscated earlier had somehow fallen into the hands of the three boys, as they were now wearing them. "H-how?" Riku opened a Dark Corridor, an ability he had since his own trip through the basement levels of Castle Oblivion. Then, he expanded the Dark Corridor so that it showed Castle Oblivion's first floor. "Heave Ho!" Sora exclaimed cheerly as he tossed the unconscious Terra into the Castle. "What are you doing?" Kairi asked from the C.O. side. "Take Terra and get out!" Jason shouted from the D.R. side. "All of you! Get out of Castle Oblivion and back to the Castle that Never Was." Of course everyone on the C.O. side was shocked. But Larxene was staring at Jason with an unreadable expression. He knew what she was worried about: There was a very healthy chance that none of them would be seen again. "As long as Riku's with us we'll be able to return," Jason said, "And I'm determined to meet you at the altar!" Sora stepped forward so Kairi could see him before saying, "Kairi! I love you, you know that?" she nodded tearfully. "I'm going to come back to you!" Riku was the last to deliver a message. "Xion!" she gasped, unsure what he wanted. "I'm going get out of here. Then I'm going to find a way to let you live your own life." His hand trembled. Riku knew time was running out. "You're no longer going to be a replica, or just someone's puppet. You'll be your own person!" Finally, Riku was forced to let the Dark Corridor go. It snapped shut, separating Castle Oblivion from the Dark Realm.
First Floor: Aqua slung the still-unconscious Terra over her shoulder. The rest of the people were still in a state of shell-shock, unable to process what just happened. Oddly enough, Luxord snapped out of it first. "The flow of Time here is muddled…" His eyes widened in horror. "We need to get out of here. The Castle's about to collapse!!" Everyone else woke up in a hurry. Lexaeus approached the expansive doors leading outside. "Hmmm…Ayer's Rock!" A glow surrounded the Silent Hero, and and he kicked the doors.
The doors exploded outwards, becoming completely separated from their hinges. "One at a time, everyone," Lexaeus drawled, gesturing stiffly to the giant hole where the doors used to be. Castle Oblivion chose now to begin shake. So everyone obeyed the giant's directive, albeit in a hurried fashion. Once outside, all of them gathered as one, cohesive group: Keybladers, Organization XIII, time travelers, and just regular humans. And as a cohesive group, they watched as Castle Oblivion crumbled, and fall into the abyss. "Our home…"Aqua whimpered to herself. Larxene stood silently, trembling. She opened a Dark Corridor and said, "Oh, don't just stand there. Get in already!"
The Dark Realm: "Very wise, brats." Xehanort stared hatefully at the three warriors. Riku stepped forward. "What I want to know is why you gave up Terra's body so willingly." The ancient Keyblader smiled wickedly. "When three new bodies give themselves so easily, why not? But you, child–" Xehanort pointed at Riku. "Are filled with the Darkness I need, so I'll take you before disposing of the spares." Riku went into Dark mode, Way to Dawn appearing in his hand. "Guess again, creep!" he spat out. Sora went into Final Form, Oathkeeper and Oblivion twirling in his hands. "I won't let you lay a hand on Riku!" he declared. Xehanort looked at Jason, who appeared to be doing nothing. "As I thought, you have nothing." he sneered. Jason lifted his head. An aura began to envelop him, his hair turned golden, his green eyes turned deep blue. "No, I'm ready." Larx-Jason stated simply.
Xehanort kept sneering as he summoned his Keyblade. a tense aura draped over the plateau—until at an unseen signal, the three warriors of Light attacked the Master of Dark.
As the Light warriors ducked and weave and struck, they only had a single thought: They needed to get back to the people that loved them.
Categories: Chains of Affection