Kingdom Hearts: Distant Worlds



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maryadavies

She Shoots for the Stars
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Introduction

I keep looking at the threads about FF charas that might be in KH3 and thinking, “Why no FFXI?”. Seriously. This has got to stop and right now. FFXI is just as much a FF game..and a possible place to pull a few charas from..as any other FF game. Is it that it is a messy MMORPG and no one but me has played the thing? Or that you're like MonCapitan2002 from RPGamer and swore you wouldn't touch that “bloody MMO” until it went free to play? (which I doubt it ever will unless the new director goes nuts and some new mounts/stuff that could be put in a cash shop go into the game, tho there will be a phone version that might make the MonCappies out there happy, but I bet he'll be a sourpuss and say “I hate phone games, grrr!”) Or if you did, bet you never got though Valkurm Dunes, geez..

And yes, an explanation as it pertains to me is in order. Back when I got out of college, I played the last few days of the PC/PS2 US/English beta of FFXI and enjoyed it.(Shadowneko, my brother had gotten into both betas somehow, forget how he managed it.) A few months later, since PS2 beta players got this, a free PS2 HDD ended up on our doorstep. (PC beta players were pretty hot under the collar about that, as I recall. They wanted a free copy of the game too.)

Me and Neko (mostly me near the end..) played FFXI off and on for 10-11 years, buying every expansion that came out and beating it. With me, it got me though some really rough times; me having trouble finding work even tho I was putting in application after application, ending up in a situation I'm still in and still am not happy with (don't ask) Dad dying of a really stupid accident, Mom dying of chemo complications (Really nasty way to die)..you get the idea. Me and the friends mentioned in this fic, even tho Kadian is the only one that's playing FFXI now (I did reactivate for a month to get an updated copy of the game for various reasons; I went ahead and beat Rhapsodies of Vana'diel with the help of some old friends since that's the end of the story pretty much. Have seen the end though a Youtube video beforehand, made me cry.) basically stuck together for a very long time; CurseTheYagudo was my second linkshell ever and I met most of them there.

After Seekers, me and most of the crew retired and went to XIV; Only Cydori's playing XIV now. But we still keep in touch. That's the power of a MMO, I guess. ^^

Just so you know, I think the “companion” charas of FFXI have the most chance of showing up in KH3/future KH games, with Shantotto being the exception since she is considered the “first lady” of FFXI. What I mean: with every expansion, there was a girl/lady that was your companion/helper though the story. (Wierd, I know.) I wrote a little page on what I thought of them, ya can find that here.

If once I finish this fic, this gets you intrigued; FAIR WARNING. Server populations on all servers are extremely low now. You might be better off waiting for the phone version. Also (and I know this won't make the German people on here happy) they pulled German support about 3-4 months before I hung up my whm hat, so you'd have to play in English. Sorry. Since the phone version will only be going to the second expansion at first(Chains of Promithia, which many consider the best story in all the FFXI expansions), you'd have to get the PC version if you want to go though the whole story NOW. (the console versions were dropped not too long ago); I'd suggest checking Amazon since the Steam version has been known to have bugs. Also, before you dip your toe in, I suggest you see if you can scare up 3-5 friends to come with you to the same server. I ain't kidding about the server populations. You may need those friends to get anywhere. Also be aware, this game was based on Everquest originally, which means it's pretty darned grindy, so make sure you got plenty of time to grind for exp/gear/etc. You'll thank me later for the warning. ^^

Anyway, the way I understand it; Without Final Fantasy XI, there would not be a FFXV or a KH3 waiting for us in the future; very likely to the mismanagement/crud over FFXIV and other things. The way I understand it, if FFXI hadn't existed, those misturns could of killed Square Enix all together. That 12.95 a month fee that was paid by thousands of players, along with some mobile games, kept Square afloat and their doors open. (FFXI is the most profitable FF ever made, after all.) Well, the way I understand it anyway. That's why I hope it gets honored in KH3, for heaven's sake. That wasn't the only thing it did; it had the first vocal song in a MMORPG that I know of (this story's namesake), was the first to have simultaneous releases in all regions (Mind, it started with patches all going though the same day, and then went to expansions later; It actually took about 1-2 years for the main game to show up in the US originally, so didn't start that way), the only MMO to have the same servers for all regions..the list goes on. Oh and would you believe I've only seen two really really obvious translation/localization flubs in the whole game? Bet you wish KH got that kinda love. All this..with a development staff that has always been shrinking.

Anyway enough with the ranty ranty. To be honest, this didn't start because I was getting annoyed that FFXI has been ignored so badly. This started because I saw the Re: Coded movie, then played Dream Drop Distance, then thought; “Why the flippin' fudge didn't they tell him what was up?” Well, maybe they didn't know everything, but if they forget AGAIN to tell the real Sora what to do about the pain/hurt..Why not have a new friend explain/help, since I'm sure that'd cause a LOT less trouble than yet another heart inside him or somethin'? Prishe is kinda the Queen of Hurt in a way and would know how to handle it, you'll see why in this story. Data-Sora couldn't, he no longer remembers, sad to say...Also this is a little side story to KH3, something that'd fit in game. I don't feel comfortable trying to tell my own version, I don't have all the pieces yet (Heck, the English version of Chi: Unchained isn't that far into the story yet!) so to quote Rita Repulsa: “This whole thing is giving me a HEADACHE!”. Also I'm actually bringing the FFXI charas to the KHverse with a little..FFXI lore trick, so you'll be seeing pretty much their original versions here, even tho I will have a teensy bit of my own spin on them, but not enough to matter. I'm aware this is usually Not Done with KH, but since FFXI seems to be the blackest sheep of the FF family, I felt this was the best way to introduce 'em and let people see the original versions.

On cussing; if I didn't see a chara cuss in the game(s), he/she won't cuss here. But that doesn't mean say, Sora won't know what dirty words mean. You can't go to normal school and not learn what dirty words mean, even if you choose not to use them; so he won't bat an eye at any cussing. Prishe will be pretty much uncensored tho (she's got a mild potty mouth) tho if she shows up in KH3 for reals, they will very likely cut out her damns and hells.

Also; in these introductions, I will try to explain any FFXI/MMORPG related stuff that pops up that people might go HUH? at. I've been trying to write this to avoid that, even tho this is tech a KH/FFXI crossover (tho not calling it that; KH is already a crossover) but the occasional one will slip though, I just know it. Excuuuuse me, Princess, in advance! And don't be afraid to ask if I do have a Freudian slip there!

Also just so you know; FFXI has enough time travel hokey pokey to give ANYONE a headache. I'm ignoring the heck out of that for the most part (there may be a mention late in the story tho); but it also has some dimensional shenanigans. I'm sticking to the dimensional shenanigans for this story, since that isn't quite as headache-y, especially the way I'm planning to use them.

Also reference before I start introducing characters you don't know: Someone on BlueGartr has made a thread that compiles all the cutscenes from the whole game that are on Youtube. If you don't care to pay for a few months to get though the game, and still want to know what the fudge FFXI is about, here's the thread: https://www.bluegartr.com/threads/50364-Complete-Mission-Cutscenes . I highly recommend that instead of buying the game. Be aware, FFXI is massive.

Also if you STILL want to play, PM me and let me know. I can get you in touch with Kadian and some friends that I know that still play who can help. The server is Quetzalcoatl btw.

Anyway here's the chara list of people you haven't met yet:

NPCs:

Gilgamesh-- No, this isn't the one you're thinking of. This Gilgy isn't even REMOTELY funny or silly; he's the head of the Tenshido, a pirate, and Lion's adopted father.

Lion(Thief)– I really can't say much about her (and she only has a bit part in this story because of this) other than she is brave, a little spunky, very nice, and speaks her mind. Not to mention she sacrifices her existence for the player chara a while in game. Unfortunately she's a pretty flat/fanservice-y chara. Nomura reportedly WANTED to put her in Dissidia btw (Saw that on the FF Wiki, so take that with a heavy grain of salt), so I think she has a decent chance for KH3 if Nomura really loves her.

Prishe -- (Monk/White Mage)Hoo boy. I can tell you a lot of NA players love her, and it's not hard to see why. She's spunky, cheerful, a little reckless, and a little badass brawler at first glance. But..her chara goes deeper than that. She's actually a lot older than she appears and has quite a bit of pain in her past..Well, you'll see. Anyway she's known to have a dirty mouth and will really speak her mind when she needs to, which if you don't know her past can make her a tad annoying at first. She's also known as “that detestable child”, “The Abhorrent One”, “a demon child” and some think her to be wild and uncontrollable. Oh and this version has the Dissidia moves for the most part, but is closer to FFXI than Dissidia, personality wise. This version won't mention food unless someone's obviously hungry (Food is a part of FFXI, but at least for mages, it isn't as important anymore. If what I read on wiki is right, she REALLY went overboard with talking about food in Dissidia), something sounds like food (Like in Rhapsodies she asks if you can eat an Astral Candescence, lol! All I'll say is that is not food) or she's in the mood for a snack, and I've expanded her mental powers a touch. It's known she can hear thoughts, but as you'll see; it goes a little further than that...at least in this story.

Ulmia(Bard)– If there's such a thing as a girl-bromance, Prishe and Ulmia have it. Ulmia is Prishe's best friend and caretaker; she's polite and not as loud/obnoxious as Prishe. Oh and don't make fun of Prishe around her. She'll defend her friend pretty fiercely, and she defied her parents/grandfather to follow Prishe around; they are rarely apart. As for how she fights, I'm taking a cue from her Trust magic, with a few song additions to be more useful. The odd thing about her is she never uses a weapon other than a harp, I've taken care of that in fic as she never learned to use a dagger (a FFXI bard's traditional weapon when they're alone)..which is going to cause a problem or two...I don't think she'll show up in KH3, but I couldn't resist because of her status. Anyway she's known as a very good singer, and if you didn't guess; her trust magic is a bard, so she's one.

Shantotto– (Black Mage) Hoo. This tarutaru is selfish, thinks she's superior to everyone else, and is also a genius black mage. Not to mention she has a horrible temper. Talk about a recipe for ticking Sora off. Anyway, the good thing about her is if she finds out she's on the wrong side, she'll cut and run, also if she's sure she's on the right side, she stays loyal. Curiosity can either bring out the best or the worst in her, depending on the situation (In Rhapsodies she wanted to dissect a certain character, UGH!); not to mention she's an incredible staff wielder and researcher. Now that I've read a bit more about her, I find I like the voice actor in Dissidia doing a British accent for her more and more. (In America, if you're not british and do a british accent, you are considered a snob.) Also thanks to a localization decision that makes her talk in rhyme, she's not only a Pain in the Ass to write, but I missed the fact she's a terrible snob for a very long time. (I only thought she was a major major pain in the can for quite a while, tho in Rhapsodies she shows a bit more of an asshole side. I mean, dissect a person, REALLY?!) Oh and in the newest Dissidia; I noticed that staff! For those not in the know, I can tell you what it is. It's called a Chatoyant Staff; and the devs are just being smartlazy here. That staff is all the High Quality elemental staves fused into one (The normal quality would be called a Iridal Staff, but no black mage would be caught DEAD without the high quality version; it's just that much better)...I could go on and on about mechanics, but sufficeth to say they were trying to avoid making any animation of equip swaps, thereby saving money and dev time, at least that's what I think. In this fic, I'm going to have her use that simply speaking because I avoid equip swaps in any FFXI related fic because it's really hard to explain/describe and make it believable! Not to mention I think they will keep the chatoyant staff if Shantotto shows up in KH3 just to save time and money.Anyway, she's much beloved by the JP playerbase, so if there's anything FFXI related, she kinda HAS to show her face since she's become THE voice of FFXI. It's kinda unavoidable. Not to mention, in my case; She's the reason this mess starts...

The Star Sybil-- The religious and secular lead of Windhurst. She once had the ability to see the future; she'll be mentioned later.

Esha'ntarl/Cardinal Mildaurion – Prishe's mentor and teacher, and the last of the Zilart. Long story. Again, she won't actually show up but you'll see Prishe thinking that Mildaurion will kill her at certain points if she does some naughty stuff. This lady will stop at NOTHING to keep the status quo, by the way. She even fixed a way so she could read/change Prishe's thoughts though a brooch Prishe wears (which Mildaurion gave Prishe “to protect her”) at one point, prolly because she was afraid Prishe would turn into a villain..but her worries were obviously unfounded there.

Nag'molada – Again mentioned in fic but never seen, he was a fairly sneaky-ish villain in Chains of Promithia – and a Kuluu. Let's just say some…..mmm...bad guys...will remind Prishe of him…

Player Charas:



(Pic by the lovely DarkGreyHeroine, by the way. THANKS!)

Elizara – (White Mage/Black Mage/Thief/Summoner/Beastmaster/Geomancer) If someone's in pain, or hurting, or needs help, I'll be there! A short little mithra with a big heart. Tends to speak her mind and be as blunt as a board, sadly. Not to mention she has a bad tendency to put her foot in things sometimes. Is also a very high level Culinarian AKA. cook. Actually-- this is my chara, so you prolly know her already since your real self comes though in this kinda situation! Anyway she'll show up again later on; you'll see how. ^^

Cydori – (Dragoon) Went the wrong way again, why is this not a surprise? Decently skilled human dragoon who has a rather snarky sense of humor. She also is the kind that could get lost in her mog house, which is a joke among Elizara and her friends that she laughs along with. Elizara likes to feed Cydori's wyerven, Hien “dragon treats” also known as meat scraps from whatever meat dish she was cooking recently. As for the person behind it; Cy's actually married to a “humeboy” who never really played FFXI and has never lost that sense of humor, even out of the game. Case in point: she pulled a minor prank on me recently when she heard I was playing FF13 and my brother was teasing me about it; she made me some beeswax in FFXIV that was none of 'Neko's with a laugh before she logged off. If that gives you an idea of her sense of humor. Haha. And that's the power of a true friend. Even if you've never seen said friend in the flesh, which I haven't. ^^ Oh and I know Cydori's a KH fan as well; she hasn't finished DDD yet, but I hope she does before KH3 since she is pretty interested in the game because of Big Hero 6. ^^

Demandred – (Warrior/Black Mage/Blue Mage/Summoner/Monk/White Mage) Let's get going and get this done! Yeah! A human male friend who always has a smile, not to mention fights very hard and knows his jobs. Has a great sense of humor, too. He's a high level woodworker, crafter wise. Oh and with the real person; this is funny. He is actually a she in real life! This is common in mmos because some girls who play these games do not want to be hit on under any circumstances by stupid, horny teenagers who can't tell pixels from reality. (And even those like me who don't want to hide our sex have ways of dealing with said idiots.) She's married to Klaital in real life.

Klaital – (Samurai/Paladin/Black Mage/White Mage/Blue Mage/Thief) Let's go. A quiet, determined human girl who is very loyal to Demandred; you usually don't see one without the other. She also has a good sense of humor. Not surprising on the loyalty to Dem here tho; in RL, she is really a he and is married to Dem. Oh and I remember mentioning a certain..village idiot who liked to hit on anything with a tail or was female to that couple (at the time I couldn't tell which) and Dem actually said that if said donk hit on Klai, she'd give a blow by blow (lol). I gather Klai would of trotted out what I'd like to call “The Lecture” which would have been quite amusing, I bet. ^^ Anyway, me and Klaital keep in touch though Steam now a days when he's not busy/at work.

Kadian – (Dark Knight) Hey pretty kitty, trouble brewing? Time to deal with it! A human Dark Knight who is enthusiastic, prefers greatswords over scythes, and knows her stuff. Not to mention really likes Elizara. Some find her just a taaad annoying, but she's a good person to have by your side when the chips are down. As for the real person: Kad is Canadian and has had a few RL jobs, some of them odd jobs; I have no idea what she does now a days though. I usually talk to her a lot over IM. Other than that, she's a major Gargoyles fan! (she was bummed when the news about why it's not in KH showed up)

Jahn – Demandred's mentor and a killer human monk. Actually..he's Scandiavian, known for multiboxing charas (that's when you run multiple characters at once; Doing it RIGHT takes third party tools and a LOT of skill if you don't want it to look really stupid/cause some major accidents that annoy other players) and is the reason Elizara finds out about what's going on..well, you'll see. You won't actually see him in the story, but because of an errand, his presence is felt!

Nimbex – A certain pointy headed tarutaru (and yes, his head is very pointy) white mage that was Elizara's mentor for white mage. Um, again this is one you won't see in the story, but he is mentioned because of a certain injoke. In real life, he works in IT btw.

Okay. Now for the wierdo terms/stuff I use in fic:

Booyah Tree – Um, this is a slangy term in FFXI for “The Boyhada Tree”; don't ask me how this started; people have been calling it that since English support began as far as I know. I think it's a pun/sounds cool?

Pie joke/tease – Hoo. This is a mother of one, and you'd better sit down. To explain this, this is a twisted-to-fit-FFXI-lore CurseTheYagudo injoke. The original was “putting pies in the car”; I think I'd better tell you the story of how it started.

My brother, Shadowneko was in a static experience points party with Nimbex (he was the white mage) and some members of CTY that have long since vanished. (He was a thief.) It was around Thanksgiving. Our mother always made homemade pies around thanksgiving. The trouble was..We had german cockroaches (We didn't get rid of them until a year or two ago, finally.) and mom didn't want them crawling on the pies. So, and also because she didn't believe FFXI can't be paused, grabbed Neko by the ear and had him haul pies out to the car, not even letting him say he was going away from the keyboard for a bits. She also asked me to do it, but I managed to get away for three seconds, long enough to get at the keyboard and type, “AFK! We gotta put pies in the car!”

….I've never ever lived that down since. Bet you haven't heard a weirder away from keyboard story, lol.

And yes, there's a few more linkshell injokes, they would have been easier to use, but they were a bit..erm, dirtier. Not to mention they're not as fun without the people that started'em..If you're curious, PM me and I'll explain. XD.

D2 – This is one that ALWAYS slips out no matter how hard I try. It's an accepted shorthand for a Black Mage spell called Warp 2; in Japanese it's Dejyon 2/Degeon 2 ( デゲオン2 if you can read Japanese); basically it's to send other people home. So it got shortened to D2 long before us English players got there.

And don't get me started on the OTHER warp spells, including deathwarping/bloodwarping (means you die, then go to your home point on purpose)...Lol. All of them are currently shortened this way. And since a certain warp spell that carries you to the past came into being, it's gotten to be confusing..Is deathwarp D3, or is it D4 and Retrace is D3? Argh :)

Asking the moogle for information – Actually this a ficcy way of explaining these two wikis: https://www.bg-wiki.com/ and FFXIclopedia - Wikia , unlike the wikis we all malign, these are kept dead. accurate. since they are actually quest/story walkthroughs and since there's no help in game for figuring out quests and stuff, they are a necessity. So they are VERY heavily policed by the community and by the mods to make sure no one edits anything in that is not accurate. This is also why I was shocked when I found out the KH wikis are not that accurate!

Friend pearl – This is basically an in universe fic friend list, ha. If you remember link pearls in FFXIV, I think this needs no more explanation than that. I'm actually having linkshells be on the right ear and friend pearl be on the left as a nod to FFXIV; I figure since the idea of linkshells came from FFXI, that it should not matter which game the linkshell is from, and if I remember right, the linkshell in the FFXIV story is on the right ear. ^^ They don't show a NPC run linkshell in FFXI unlike XIV, so I'm just using that for a reference.

“No matter how tough you get, there's always a rarab that'll kick your ass” – This is kinda a cliché that every FFXI player will warn you about. Every newbie finds out why firsthand; In all the newbie areas, there's a bunny type monster called a rarab. UNLESS you are leveled enough, it WILL tear you to shreds. There are tougher ones found in certain areas, and YES they will tear higher level players a new one if you are not careful. Heck, there even exists a rarab named monster that'll rip level 75 players a new one! (I've tried it, it's mean enough that it might even kick level 99 players's asses unless they're really well geared!) So yeah, this is basically a way of saying, “don't be cocky, if you're not careful something stupid will kick your ass”; maybe Sora needs to hear this XD.

Anyway enough of that. Just so you know, this DOES start in Vana'diel but doesn't stay there...you'll see. Also this is a version of Vana'diel that's compatible with the KHverse in the first place; easier to match'em that way; this means there will be some very minor lore changes, I'll point them out as they come up. :) Also one more thing; there be spoilers to FFXI afoot here up to Rhapsodies of Vana'diel. Of course, there will be spoilers from KH DDD onward too but I assume for most of us, that isn't as big a deal.

Anyway, shall we see what's down this rabbit hole? Here we go!
 
Last edited:

maryadavies

She Shoots for the Stars
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Messages
1,449
Awards
25
Age
45
Location
Somewhere east of Atlanta, GA
Website
maryadavies.vze.com
  • Keyblade Champion
  • Taciturn Stalwart
  • Moana
  • Final Fantasy XV
  • Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy
  • 15th Anniversary
Prologue: The Crystal's Light Shines…

It all began with a stone, or so the legend says...
In ages past, this sentient jewel, enormous and beautiful, banished the darkness.
Its many colored light filled the world with life, and brought forth mighty gods.
Bathed in that light, the world entered an age of bliss, until after a time, the gods fell into slumber.
That world was called, Vana'diel…

It was the twilight of the age of adventurers. The world was entering an era of peace...or so everyone thought. And so it seemed.

But the crystal has many facets, and with one facet, an unknown trouble was lurking without...and trouble does not have to come from within one facet of the world to be a threat…

A rather annoyed mithra tramped her way though the Sea Serpent Grotto, which was rather damp. (Not surprising since it held several underground rivers.) Her tail was lashing the air, which betrayed how she was feeling. Anyone who looked at her would of thought, “Hmm. White mage. And a powerful one.”, for she wore a white hood with red triangles on the edges of it, as well as a thick red stripe down the top of it; her white robe, which looked like a closed jacket with a red and white patterned placket down the middle, also had the same red triangles on the edges of the collar. There were also two huge gold buttons on it; one in the middle, one at her throat, near a gold collar. Her pants were oddly striped in red and white with some gold accents, not to mention tan leather at some spots, including the knees; her shoes were brown and plain. She was wearing white mitts as well, not to mention the shield that looked like it was made from plates from a giant turtle's back, or the bleached club that seemed to be cut into dizzying spirals with a wide, flat business end that almost looked like the top of a very small table.

Darn that Jahn!, she thought. She flipped a bit of brown hair out of her eyes. Why did he have to want red curry buns when most of the Tenshido shops are closed?! I'm going to sell a few for sure this time for an annoyance fee... She came to what seemed to be a dead end; she reached out and touched a hidden switch in a crack that ran the height of the wall. The wall slid away to reveal a passage with an arch. She stamped down this path, ignoring the crabs, walking skeletons, and huge leeches that slithered away, for this was the way to the true Tenshido headquarters: Norg. It didn't take her long once she walked into town to find the merch she was seeking. He was still open for business.

“Thank goodness~!” the mithra said with a sigh. “Ah...would you have any coriander and curry powder?”

“Yes, I do, my lady. Just got a new shipment in. How much do you need?”
“Couple dozen measures of each, thank you.”

The mithra reached for her wallet to pay for the spices. Just then, a guard ran out of the area up the stairs.

“Lady Elizara! Lady Elizara! Been wondering when ye'd turn up. Boss wants ta see ye.”

Now what? “Be but a moment, need to pay for this first.” She paid for the spices (kinda pricy, especially for the coriander but worth it), carefully stowed the precious packets in her gobbiebag, and headed for the stairs. It didn't take her long to get to the right office and walk in. There, sitting at a desk, was the head of the Tenshido; Gilgamesh. He was a human with white hair, a grey and white vest, and a red headband and a red eyepatch on the left eye.
“Ah!” he said, “Welcome 't Norg. Didn't know if ye'd be nosing around these parts any time soon..”
Elizara laughed. “When you got a friend who likes red curry buns and you're a high level cook, you end up coming here sooner or later, especially if merchants close too soon on you. What seems to be the trouble, sir?”
Gilgamesh nodded. “Aye. It's me daughter...Poor Lion's havin' bad nightmares again, the poor lass..”
Oh no..”What is it this time?”
“She's havin' one right now. Ye'll have 't wake 'er up, but she won't tell me...”
Elizara perked up her ears, which were inside her hood. She could hear a familiar voice calling out in her sleep, “No! No! No! Not that!” She sighed. “Lead me to her bedroom. I'll deal with this nonsense right now.”
Gilgamesh nodded grimly, got up and led her away from the offices. He unlocked a door and they both went though it, as the sleep-talking got louder. It didn't take them long to get to the right room. Elizara turned to Gilgamesh.

“You'd better get back to the office. I might have to get a little ugly here and I'd rather not pull at your heartstrings too badly.”

“Arr, gotcha lassie. I'll get outta here for now. Don't hurt 'er too bad, okay? I won't report ye for nuffin', so do what ye must.” Gilgamesh left. Elizara went in the room. There, on the bed, was Lion, tossing and turning and twitching in what was obviously a pretty bad nightmare. Elizara reached out and tried shaking her first; that didn't work. Elizara sighed in exasperation. Guess I have to get ugly…

Every person who fought or cast magic around here knew a little minor, but powerful, trick that allowed one to draw on the power of two jobs, not just one. Unfortunately, you could only use a much weakened version of the spells or abilities from the additional job, with a few exceptions, and the additional job itself was a lot weaker than the one you were actually using as your main job when you used it that way.

In this case, the additional job that Elizara was relying on was black mage. So (being quite annoyed, and since she had permission!) she cast an Ice spell on Lion. Lion yelled because that was cold; then turned over and woke up. She turned her blue eyes toward Elizara. Elizara sighed.

“Sorry about that...”

“It's okay, it's okay. Guessing you were just tryin' to wake me up..”

Elizara nodded. “Your dad's worried about you and these nightmares...”

Lion flicked some red hair out of her face. “I really didn't want to tell him because what I've been dreaming about makes my hair stand on end.”

“Could you tell me? I won't tell on you.”

Lion sighed. “I don't know if there's anything you can do about it, but anyway...It starts with Diablos. He said: “There is trouble brewing outside of our fair world, trouble caused by a man who would not give up on finding out about a disaster and did not care who he hurt to find out the answer.” Then I see two scenes; one where our world is okay, the other in which the crystals shatter and our world falls to the darkness...Then Diablos says, “There is a human boy with sapphire eyes, who unknowingly, has the ability to stop it and save more than he knows he will. If he succeeds in stopping that man and finishing his quest, our world will be safe. If he fails and the evil one gets his way, our world will be caught in the resulting chain reaction and be destroyed...But there is a way. If the girl who could have been the Keeper of The Apocalypse lends him her wings and shows him the way to deal with pain of the heart..he will succeed for sure. Their meeting is fated...and I can't tell if she'll live though the adventure and make it home...” It scares me to death to think about...”

By the Goddess! Prishe! Elizara's tail puffed up like a bottlebrush. And..could all me and my friends went though to keep Vana'diel from falling into the darkness and getting devoured be in vain!? I hope not. Wait...maybe I can stack the deck? I do have those Destroyers that I haven't pitched into the junk pile yet, and since I can't use them, they're not bonded to me. If Prishe can use them..it'll allow her to fight a lot harder, and maybe keep herself alive. Only trouble is that bleeping latent curse on them, but that's easy to deal with if not time-consuming.

Elizara stood up. “Don't worry too much, Lion. I may not be able to do much...this time. But sometimes the smallest thing can tip the balance and make the future that much brighter. So don't lose hope, okay?”

Lion nodded. “Do what you can then, I'll just pray that we survive.”

Elizara then said her goodbyes, went and told Gilgamesh she was going to see what she could do to ease Lion's heart, and then warped home. She then asked a taru in Port Windhurst to teleport her to Tavnazia. It didn't take her long to get to the Safehold, then head to the top floor in the tunnels. Going to a certain huge set of doors, she knocked. “Prishe! Are you home?”

“Yeah, what's it to ya?”

“There's trouble brewing...again...but this time I may not be around when it hits...”

There was some bangs, then a loud thump as the door opened. There stood Prishe, with her light lavender hair, the headpiece she wore as a nun of the church here, her blue eyes, and the black and purple clothes she always wore. Since she was still..well, a kid even tho she wasn't, she was shorter than Elizara and only came up to her shoulder. (Elizara wasn't a tall mithra, and she always thought that if Prishe ever grew up, she was going to be pretty tall.)

Prishe rubbed one finger under her nose. “Heh, if there's trouble, it ain't nuffin' that a few shakes of my fist won't solve...”

“Haven't I told you a thousand times, that sometimes things aren't that simple? And I think I mentioned the old saw a few times, “No matter how tough you get, there's always a rarab that'll kick your ass”. Anyway, you may have to face it alone this time if what Diablos told Lion is right, and it might be really risky...So I thought I'd see if I could help you out.” Elizara withdrew the Destroyers from her bag.

Prishe stared at the Destroyers for a moment, then asked, “What the hell did he tell Lion?”

Elizara sighed, then went into the story of what had happened in Norg. Prishe tapped her head. “A human boy with sapphire eyes..not much ta go on..”

Elizara shook her head. “I know...” Elizara suddenly got an idea, but she wanted to deal with the Destroyers first if Prishe'd take them.

Prishe gave Elizara a funny look. “Ya just got an idea, didn't ya?”

“Can't fool you, can I?”

Prishe shook her head. “Nope. What's the plan?”

“First off, these are yours. I'll call some friends and we'll break the darned latent curse on them so they're useable; otherwise it'd take a freakin' month for you to break it on your own.”

“Tell me about it. Took me forever ta break the damn curse on the training knucks so I could learn Asuran Fists. But..there's a faster way? With friends, I guess?” Prishe took the Destroyers and put them on her belt, under her blouse.

Elizara nodded. “Yep. Easily dealt with, I'll explain on the way, but if all goes well, we'll be done in an hour. Besides, I just consider it rude to give someone a gift like those knucks and not help break the curse. Anyway after that, we'll head to Carbuncle's circle; I'm sure he can give us a good explanation, and since I'm in no mood for a fight, he's our best choice since he's actually approachable, unlike most of the other prime avatars. Forewarned is forearmed, and the more you know, the more you can be prepared for.”

She reached for her left ear, and her friend pearl. She smiled when checking it, then said, “Hey, Demandred, I think we got a latent to break, you up for that?”

She could almost see that warrior smiling. “Sure! Oh and Klaital overheard me, she's up for it too. She'll go get her samurai on.”

“See ya at the Booyah Tree fast as ya can get there? Oh and it's not me, it's Prishe. I'll make sure she knows what's up.”

“You bet, and thanks. I know she can get distracted sometimes.”

Elizara also noticed that Cydori was around. It was tradition among her and her friends, that if there was a breaking-latent-curse party that anyone that could help do it..or had a weapon they were training...was welcome. Within limits of course, too many helping to break the curse and it got a little too crazy. In this case, Elizara wasn't sure if Cydori could help but she'd been training a very non-traditional weapon for a Dragoon...that is a staff...so she'd be glad to come along. It didn't take Elizara long to let Cydori know what was up, and to meet them at the Tree as soon as possible.

Elizara then turned to Prishe. “Let's head downstairs. I need to talk to the nomad moogles; don't laugh. Since like most white mages, I rarely get into the melee, I never can remember skillchains..”

“...Skillchains? What does that have ta do with anythin'?”

“Ah, but that's the secret to breaking a latent curse fast, Prishe. You have to do some skillchains, and light and dark skillchains break it faster. It's less stressful to do that with friends as it is. Anyway, we had also better look for Ulmia; I don't want her freaking out when we leave.”

“Heh heh, she's been a bit nervy since that mess a few months back...”

“Well, I know she's your best friend, and since she watches out for you, I guess she doesn't want you hurting yourself. Anyway let's get moving.”

They headed down the ramp toward the nomad moogles. Just as Elizara was brushing by a few people to get there, a familiar voice cried out, “Hey pretty kitty, what'cha up to with Prishe?”

Elizara jumped six fulms. “Yikes, Kadian! Don't scare me like that; did you just wake up or something?”

Kadian stepped forward where they could both see her better (blond hair that was a bit spikey, spikey looking armor, and that fancy greatsword of hers) and then nodded. “Just warped here too, and guess I slept a little late..”

“Guess that's why I didn't see you on the friend pearl. Anyway, Prishe here has some Destroyers with an unbroken latent curse that needs breaking.”

“I guess you missed me, so I wasn't gonna hear about that? Count me in!”

“Okay, the more the merrier! I gotta go ask a moogle for a skillchain chart, but meet me at the Booyah Tree okay? I shouldn't be long after I find Ulmia.”

“You crazy kitten! You're an experienced thief as well as white mage, and you still don't remember?”

Elizara laughed. “I'm usually farming solo when I use thief, you should know that. Also other than latent-curse-breaking, the art of skillchaining is pretty much dead; well, unless you are a samurai or a blue mage, since those two jobs are the experts in it.”

Kadian then saluted her friend, then ran off. It didn't take Elizara long to get to the moogles and ask one of them for the chart, since she knew even though maybe Klaital might remember what weaponskills chained with what, she sure didn't. After she put the precious chart into her bag, she turned to Prishe.

“Do you have any idea where Ulmia might be this time of day? I don't want to just teleport-mea off with you without telling her...”

“Yeah, she's prolly by the cliff again. And don't worry, I got the key-crystals for Dem, Mea, and Holla; got them while I was being really damn stupid when we had ta worry about Promithia.”

Elizara nodded and smiled; she'd guessed Prishe had them, but hadn't been all the way sure; that would save them hours of travel time. “Lead on, Prishe. Best to make sure she knows where you're going.”

It didn't take the pair too long to go outside. There at the usual spot on the cliff by the ocean, practicing her harp, was Ulmia.

Elizara stepped up. “Excuse me, Ulmia?”

Ulmia looked up. “Oh! Everything all right?”
Elizara nodded. “Thought you might wanna know that I'm borrowing Prishe for a little while.”

Prishe cocked her head. “Just going ta smash some crabs, I'll be back in a few hours. How the hell could I get in trouble with Elizara around, anyway?”

Ulmia laughed. “After what you did, Elizara, I'm not going to worry too much if Prishe wants to do something with you. Just..get back safe.”

Prishe smiled and rubbed that finger under her nose again. “Ha, should be no damn problem, Ulmia!”

Elizara smiled as well, then said, “We'd better back up, Prishe. Sorry Ulmia, I don't want to catch you in my teleport spell.”

Ulmia nodded and went back to practicing. The pair backed up a good six yalms, then Elizara cast her spell. The world faded to white, then they were at the Mea crystal.

Elizara turned to Prishe. “You'd better hold this. Peace offering!” and she brought a carrot out of her bag.

“Hey, is that a snack?”

Elizara shook her head. “Not for you. It's a vomp carrot; they taste absolutely disgusting to people. But I was about to whistle for my chocobo, Stardust Angel; she loves'em.”

“Oh, I get it. This is a chocobo bribe?” Prishe took the carrot, but didn't try to take a bite out of it. (Elizara knew Prishe trusted her when it came to food; they'd been good friends for quite a while.)

Elizara smiled and nodded. “I wouldn't try to ride double with you on any other bird; I raised that chocobo from a chick and trained it, before I gave her over to the Windhurst chocobo stables so that they could take care of her for me. I don't think it'll be a problem though; you're pretty small, skinny, and light, so you prolly won't be much of an extra burden on her.”

Elizara took her chocobo whistle out of her shirt, then blew. Nothing happened for a moment, then there was the sound of feet, and a “Kweeeeeeh!” A blue chocobo ran out of a dust cloud. It had a bare hint of purple in its feathers and was slender, with three toes on each foot; its tail was rather bushy, and the ends of the tailfeathers faded from blue-purple to brownish, then white at the tips. There was also white feathers on the edge of its head-ruff, and where the feathers met the upper legs, as well as the edges of the wings. It, of course, had a saddle and bridle.

The chocobo stopped cold right in front of Elizara. Prishe offered the carrot; the chocobo grabbed it and chomped it up happily, then Prishe gave the chocobo a scritch on the head.

Elizara carefully mounted, then held out a hand so Prishe could mount behind her. “Hold on to my belt!” she cried, then once Prishe was mounted and behind her snugly, she said to the chocobo: “Giddyap, Stardust!”

“Kweh!” the chocobo said, and then off they went. Since Elizara had memorized the way a long time ago, she didn't reach into her bag for her map book; they went a bit kitty corner from the telepoint to the entrance to Meriphataud Mountains. Once they got into there and into the path (if you got off it, Elizara knew, it could get extremely hard to travel in this area), Elizara said:

“Okay, let me explain how this is going to work while we're traveling; we still got a ways to go. First off, I'll check that skillchain chart if I'm going to be swinging my club at all; Not kidding on how I always forget, even tho I've broken about five or six latent curses in my day. You don't use it everyday, you lose it.”

“Bah, I know. But what's goin' on?”

“We'll talk about it first, figure out who does what. Anyway the thing is with this; you have to basically do the second weaponskill in the chain to make this work. Basically, you wait for the first person to do their weaponskill, count to five, then let yours loose. Then you'll see an explosion, which means you got a big chunk off that curse, then we do it again when people are ready, again and again until the curse breaks and the weapons show their true power. Easy-peasy, but you can miss if you're not paying attention. Then it won't count for much, yes solo weaponskills help kill it too, but nowhere near as fast. Got that?”

“Yep. Sounds pretty damn simple, why don't more people do it?”

Elizara chuckled. “Because it is more efficient not to bother most of the time, and just unleash when anyone bloody feels like it. Sad, that for skillchaining takes a little thinking and teamwork; not to mention that a black mage or a blue mage could do double damage on the chain explosion if he or she is fast. I never got very good at it on black mage though, the art sorta died out before I really started training the job.”

She shook her head a little bit, then said, “Just make sure you pay attention, Prishe. This can get a little dull; but it's the joking around when we're doing this chore that actually makes it fun.”

“Ack, breaking a latent curse solo is like watchin' the damn grass grow; borr-ring!” Elizara wasn't looking that general direction, but she could almost hear Prishe smile.

Just then they went right past Castle Oztroja. Since Elizara was in a hurry, she turned her face that general direction and blew a rather loud raspberry at the place. Prishe was a little startled.

“What did ya do that for?”

“Because if I wasn't in such in a flaming hurry because I don't want to have my friends cooling their heels too long, I'd go over there and bash a few birdbrains. Curse those yagudo! I wish I hadn't brought them any food, you know?”

Prishe laughed. “Wish we had time ta stop, it'd be nice ta bash a few skulls in. Damn them!”, she said, then she turned her head back a little bit and blew her own raspberry at the castle.

After that little incident, it didn't take them more than five minutes to get to The Sanctuary of Zi'tah, which was quite a beautiful place. The old trees towered over them as Elizara bore right, and it didn't take them very long to get to the entrance to the Tree.

After getting off the bird (and Stardust vanished afterward in a cloud of dust; Elizara didn't know how the chocobo stables managed to do that. Maybe they used some kind of teleport spell) they headed into the entrance, since chocobos didn't like going into places like the Tree.

Prishe ran ahead a little bit, then turned around pretty suddenly. “Aw, I see some mush up ahead..”

“Hm?” Elizara nosed her way over there. There was Demandred and Klaital, with Demandred up against one wall, his brown hair fluttering in the breeze. Klaital said, “You hot hunk, you're really looking good today..” She batted her eyes a bit at Demandred, too.

Elizara then rolled her eyes. “I've caught them at that in the mog house complex once or twice. Don't say anything, Prishe; I'll handle this...Prolly going to get ribbed for it but they're asking for it..”

She then walked right near the pair. “Excuse me, but do I smell a little too much maple suuuugarrr around here?” She fanned her nose.

Demandred looked up, then he stared at Elizara with a naughty look in his eyes. “Oh? At least I didn't drop a pumpkin pie in the airship for a certain pointy headed taru to step in...”

Elizara grabbed her head with both hands and shook it. “MRRRRAW! Am I ever going to live that one down?”

There was a laugh from somewhere around the corner. “I'm afraid not!”, Cydori said as she stepped into view. Hien was flapping over her head, as usual.

Elizara laughed. “Hey there Cydori! You didn't get lost on the way, did you?” She tossed Hien a dragon treat, who promptly gobbled it down. Cydori was dressed the way she usually was; nasty looking spear on her back, brown cloth like armor, and that blue helmet that looked like it had wings..or dragon ears..on either side of it. Demandred was in blue and tan stuff that was a little stronger, with that white nasty looking greataxe on his back; his helmet more like framed his face rather than covered most of it. Klaital..well, Klaital was in that red samarai-specific armor, with a crescent moon on the top; the helm covered most of her face except for the eyes.

Cydori shook her head. “Nope, not really; just teleported here.” Elizara then heard Kadian chime in with a “Silly kitty!” They all laughed, including Prishe.

Elizara grinned at her friends. “Okay, 'nuf clowning around. Shall we? Oh and Prishe, hold still for a little bit; I know we're after crabs, but I don't want them taking chunks out of our legs until we're in the right spot and good and ready, since we're heading for where the steelshells are.”

Prishe then said, “Bashin' our way though isn't an option?”

“Um, it kinda is but it gets wearing to kill monster after monster, not to mention it can be rude if other people are trying to train weapons. Rather not borrow trouble, okay?”
Prishe then nodded, understanding at last. Elizara then cast the Sneak spell on Prishe, then on herself. What that spell was for was for getting past creatures that would attack if they heard footsteps, so it made those footsteps silent for a little while.

The others applied some silent oil (They knew how Elizara felt about having to cast that spell on more than one or two people unless she was relying on Scholar for her secondary job; that potion did the same thing as the spell) and they went deeper into the Tree.

On the way, Cydori winked at the group, then went and used Jump on a crab to be silly; then she put some silent oil back on. They all laughed. It didn't take them long to get down to the level where Ramuh lived; not that they were going to be crazy enough to ring a tuning fork by his crystal today. (There were times when they'd do that, but that was why Elizara didn't want to try to talk to him; if you did that, you'd wake him up, and he always got up on the wrong side of the bed, which meant a fight.)

“Okay then.” Elizara said, then checked the skillchain chart after they got their backs to Ramuh's lair.

Kadian then turned. “I'll just stick to great sword. Shame I forgot my Mercurial Sword though..”

Demandred smiled. “You can borrow mine; I'll just stick to great axe. Good thing I'm using samurai for my extra job though right now...” He reached into his bag (Elizara didn't know how the goblins managed to fix it so this could be done) and pulled out that greatsword, then handed it to Kadian, who put the fancy one she was wearing away and swapped it with that one.

“Mmm, then.”, Elizara said. “Dem, you could do either Full Break or Steel Cyclone, and Prishe, you'd finish it with Asuran Fists. Kadian, with you it'd be Ground Strike, then Prishe, you'd finish it with Asuran Fists, again.” She looked a little closer, but then Klaital chimed in.

“I could either do Tachi:Kasha and you do Dragon Kick, Prishe, or I do Tachi:Gekko and you Asuran Fists, okay?”

Prishe then said, “Hell, I'll stick ta Dragon Kick with you, Klaital.”

Cydori then swapped her spear for her favorite staff; they finished working on who was going to do what, Elizara cast Protectra 5 and Shellra 5 on the party as she usually did (She'd decided to bow out and stick to curing/buffing folks; three helping someone was enough, four would be way too hard to keep up with). It ended up taking an hour and a half to bust that curse, but then it took Prishe a few times to get the hang of the timing, and she did accidentally miss a few times. (She wasn't letting herself get distracted this time.) Cydori politely asked Hien to go sit in a tree so the crabs didn't die too fast (he whined). They all had a good time, however.

Once the curse on the knucks was busted and they were doing full damage, there was a little joking around (Kadian also returned the greatsword to Demandred), then Elizara asked, “Okay, D2's anyone? This was kinda unplanned..” Dem and Klaital had a ring, Cydori accepted the spell since her warp cudgel was dead, so did Kadian with a “Be careful, kitten!”

Elizara then turned to Prishe.

“Okay, let's head to Carbuncle's circle. I don't want to worry my friends about this mess anyhoo if there's nothing, really that can be done at all.”

Prishe nodded. “Be simpler if I could just bash the damn rotter and be done with it..”

“I know, Prishe. But we don't even know who the rotter is. He may be tougher than anyone knows, too. Anyway we'd better get out of here before a crab or two finds us interesting.” Prishe nodded, then Elizara cast the Teleport-Holla spell. Once they appeared at the telepoint, Elizara whistled up Stardust Angel again, and off they went. It didn't take long for them to get near the spot where all summoners of this world knew about; the circle of vertical stones where Carbuncle often appeared. Elizara then let Stardust go and looked at the rocks with a determined look in her eyes.

Prishe looked a little nervous, and asked, “Y y you aren't gonna summon Carbuncle, are you?”

Elizara shook her head. “Naw. You know I have the power of the summoner, but that's summoning a shadow of the avatar, which isn't so hazardous to your life. But...I'm not going to try a full summoning. What I'm about to do is more like an invitation to dinner; I hope he'll come, but I am not forcing him to come. It's his choice. That isn't dangerous at all, just so you know. It'd only be dangerous if I forced him.”

Prishe calmed down, then nodded, since she knew Elizara wasn't going to do something unbelievably stupid.

Elizara went to the center of the circle, then called out, “Carbuncle, Carbuncle, I beseech; Could you please come and explain to me the answers beyond my reach?”

Nothing happened for a moment, then Carbuncle appeared at Elizara's feet. He looked kind of like a cross between a squirrel and a rabbit, and had three tails; he was glowing a light blue.
He looked up, then said, “What is the problem?”

“I think you know. It's the disturbance beyond this world. Would you know any more than Diablos did?”

Carbuncle made a funny little hop, then floated in the air right in front of Elizara's face. “Not much, I'm afraid. It's hard to read the winds between dimensions. But that boy...a brown haired boy with blue eyes, who holds a key...may yet be able to stop that horrible man that serves the darkness, even tho it started with said man's own curiosity and a little knowledge, knowledge that eventually caused him to crush his own conscience...”

“And as I know from Schultz, who was the founder of the Scholars, a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.”

Carbuncle nodded; sparks flew off his tail. “The trouble is, as that boy is he cannot face that horrible villain now; he does not understand this yet but he will soon. Part of the problem is some of his friends knew something, and committed a sin of omission and neglected to tell him everything. This will bite him in the rear pretty soon.”

Prishe, who wasn't far away, cried out, “Goddess damn it! Forgot ta tell him? Someone needs their ass kicked...”

Carbuncle turned in the air to face Prishe, and smiled. “It isn't that simple, but he'll learn from the failure caused by that omission. The trouble is, part of what he needed to be told is..he's going to have to face a lot of pain of the heart to help some that otherwise would be gone for good. He needs to learn a better way to deal with it. You, little Elvaan who was once immortal, and have known pain beyond anyone your apparent age, can explain and help him. That is, if once you meet, if you follow your conscience and your heart. Lend him your wings, and show him the way, and it'll work out.”

Carbuncle turned away from the stunned Prishe and back to Elizara. “As you guessed, if that man completely wins, letting Darkness have its way and he becomes like a god, the aftershock will shatter the crystals and destroy us. If Light wins in any fashion, nothing will happen.”

“Is there...anything at all I can do? At least help when there is no other way?”

“I hear the feelings in your heart, little Mithra. You wish to try to stand and help, tho you know that may not be possible...”

Just then, one by one, the other avatars appeared. Odin and Alexander appeared as their symbols; (a dark horseshoe like thing closed at the top with a face in the center for Odin, Alexander as a miniature version of himself) Phoenix appeared as the bird that had shown itself..recently...during the latest clash. Bahamut was missing for the moment, however. “We all wish to protect this world, we will help you. Come with us.”

Carbuncle bobbed his head. “I don't think this will happen again in anyone's lifetime; very well.”

Elizara quickly turned to Prishe. “I'll be right back, don't go anywhere.”

Prishe found her voice again and said, “Don't get yourself killed, or I'll find you and kick the holy hell out of your lifeless body!”

Elizara smiled. “I don't think I will, so hang tight.” The avatars all joined their powers for a moment, and then they appeared in the Emperyal Paradox. This is the place closest to the gods...Elizara thought. It was crystalline and awesome, with a darker crystal in the center. Just then, Bahamut swooped down out of nowhere.

“We all know. This could be quite serious.” Bahamut said. He nodded, and then a ghostly Selh'teus stepped into the area, with his shadowed skin and dark eyes, and dark clothes. He nodded to Elizara.

“I was the one that found out about the problem. Now that I became what I became...I can hear the dimensional winds fairly clearly. But..there's not much anyone can do..”

“Maybe, maybe not. I just want to protect Prishe when all is near lost. Maybe there's also a hint we can give that boy? If there's any information that can be discovered? Knowledge can be a weapon too, you know.”

Selh'teus raised his head. “That hadn't occurred to me. You are right, and if you search, there is a little information on a key..a key to return hearts..and keyblade wielders..that could be passed to him...I might be able to hear something as well that could help.”

Bahamut then added, “You cannot as you are...”

Elizara bowed her head. “I know. White mages are not good fighters for the most part.”

Bahamut then chuckled. “True. But in another dimension, there's another “you” that could join you and help. A heartsister, as it were. Cait Sith, will you assist me?”
Cait looked up. “Ah yes, done it shall be.” They joined paw and claw, and then a ball of light fell from the heavens and formed into another…well, she kind of looked like a Mithra, but no Mithra had a tail that was brown, and with longer fur on it. The stranger had green eyes to Elizara's brown, brown ears, and that tail had a black tip. She was also dressed in silver, light blue, and white, with an odd looking staff that had a star on top, with an egg like crystal set in the center that glowed. She also wore an odd looking headpiece that looked a little like a horn straight up in the air.

The stranger spoke. “I heard...what is the trouble?”

It didn't take long to explain, and learn that they shared the same name, so the second Elizara said, “I'll just think of you as a sister. Anyway, if it be Hydaelyn or Altana, it's the same to me. This must be done to keep hope alive..I'll need some warning since I'd rather bring my summoner for this; do not worry though. If what I was told before I accepted this was correct, what I do on that job is a lot different than what you'd do; I don't even summon full primals, only a portion of their power from the aether. But it should work.”

The first Elizara nodded. “Two white mages is always one white mage too many, most times.”

Bahamut then said, “Warning you shall have. Since the call will come though the bonds of friendship and trust you have with Prishe, is there an object we can use that will carry our power? We'll need one.”

The first Elizara thought a second, then dug in her bag a bit. “Where did I put that old thing?” she muttered, then she found what she was looking for. “Will this work?” she said more loudly, waving a gold hairpin in the air. “A friend gave this to me before he vanished forever. I hope the symbolism will help..”

Bahamut nodded. “Even better, that it was given to you as a goodbye present. Now, join hands you two, and let us begin...”

The pair did so. The avatars then all called up a bit of their power, in multicolored balls, which all joined together and wrapped around the hairpin as if someone was reciting a poem…

After all the hurly-burly, Elizara reappeared at Carbuncle's circle, with Carbuncle and no one else. “Thank you.” she said to Carbuncle.

“You're welcome.” Carbuncle said, then curled up in a ball and vanished. Elizara then turned to Prishe. She drew the hairpin out of her bag once again; it was no longer precisely a gold hairpin anymore. It now seemed to be made of some kind of crystal that glowed in every color of the rainbow.

“Prishe; this is for you. I won't tell you precisely what this will do, I don't want the enemy to be able to force the secret out of you. But..it will protect you when all hope is gone. Don't lose it.”

Prishe nodded solemnly, took the hairpin, and put it in her hair. “I hope ta hell it won't be needed, tho. Geez, this seems like a really huge deal...”

“When worlds are in danger, it usually is. Anyway, time for you to go home.” She fished out the chocobo whistle once again; a new ring on her right hand winked in the daylight. It didn't take them both long to mount the chocobo and head to Valkurm Dunes, where the entrance to Tavnazia lay. It didn't take them long to find the right coastline and the right seaside cave, and find the black and green portal that would take them there; and use it. As they walked their way to the safehold (since chocobos wouldn't come to Tavnazia), Elizara then said, “I'll see you next week for sure at the Moonreading Ceremony?”

“Yeah, yeah. Going ta be bored out of my skull; but when the Star Sybil asked Ulmia ta sing and she said yes, I just couldn't not come along..”

Elizara smiled. “Well, I'll make sure to have a chocolate cake waiting in my mog house for after; if you're flying all the way to Windhurst, you might as well have a treat before you scat.”

“Hell yah! That's somethin' ta look forward ta~!”

It didn't take much longer for them to get there; as they parted ways, Elizara thought; Now the hard part begins; what I was told was there is information on a Keyblade War and a Key to Return Hearts here somewhere, which is what he will need to understand. I just have to find it; guess I'll have to start by having a longer talk with Cait Sith. If what I understand is right, this is stuff he wouldn't find out until a little later, but the earlier the better so he can focus his search. I'll find it, then go talk to Diablos, he gave me the means to without him being grumpy for once; rather not get anyone else involved...
-----------------

I'll be releasing a chapter every week or two, should have the first true chapter ready by next week. I hope you liked the setup tho!
 
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KingdomKey

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This was an exciting and magnificent prologue. I felt like I could see through Elizara's eyes as she set off to help Prishe with her quest. Of course, it's really awesome with what she can do as a white mage summoner. Talk about powerful. Mm, it was cool seeing her use brief black mage powers to help Lion out too. I'm curious what the hair pin does, but in the meantime, I'm eager to see what Elizara will find to help Sora out. Furthermore, I really like Prishe a lot. And the cameos of your friends in this story was really neat to. Can't wait for more. :)
 

maryadavies

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Okay. Sorry about the wait!

Anyway forgot to mention this last time; Prishe going “goddess damn it” is actually a localization correction. In the first part of Chains of Promithia, Prishe goes, “yadda yadda yadda huge goddamn dragon”...Um. Check here if you don’t believe me.

That was the first big localization/translation flub I ever noticed in FFXI (and I think it’s pretty darned glaring). Why? YOU AREN’T SUPPOSED TO KNOW ABOUT PROMITHIA AT THAT PART OF THE STORY! So, what god? It kinda ruins the immersion if you know the lore even a little bit.

Also, you’ll notice Prishe says she’s eighty-ish years old late in this chapter; this is an estimate from the official timeline. Square has not out and said this. But that’s a pretty good educated guess, I think.

Anyway enough of that. Let me go into charas you don’t know and “what the FRICK did you say?” then we’ll get to the meat of this chapter.

New charas:


Celes – I really don’t think Terra Branford is going to make it into KH3; not without calling her Tina or something (which would really look weird); I just prefer to duck it all together and have Terra missing. If you forgot there were TWO charas that are considered the head charas of FF6/FF3US. I chose Celes over Terra; you’ll notice my Celes is nice and warmer, like after she met Locke. (tho Locke isn’t anywhere to be seen) Watch out for her magic, and well..yeah she has her FF6 tricks, you’ll see later. Since I’m having her be a Radiant Garden native, her background is majorly changed, and her class is now Mage Knight.

Relm – This again, is not the exact same Relm ya remember. I have her wearing a cat ear hood...because KH needs more cat ears...not to mention it helps tell you right away that this is the Radiant Garden version. Oh and Prishe will want to slap her later..you’ll see.

Quistis Trepe – Again, this is not the same Quistie you saw in FF8, tho she looks like it. Another Radiant Garden native, this one is also OVER Leon (I don’t think highly of any love triangles) but is still a teacher. (You’ll see why)

Cecil – Again, changed background, but same old paladin you know and love if you played FF4/FF2 US.

Rosa – Changed background again. Oh and this Rosa is NOT a kidnap target. There’s enough kidnap targets in KH already. So don’t underestimate her. She’s Cecil’s girlfriend in this one, and I’m leaving their relationship the same as in FF4/FF2 US (erm, they’re lovers..).

Oliver(kitty) – From Oliver and Company, which seems to be a forgotten Disney; came out before The Little Mermaid. Anyway he’s a brave little kitten..Also I kept one thing from the movie. He can’t talk to people...well, unless your name is Prishe, since Prishe can sense thoughts.

Monterey Jack – From the Disney Afternoon show that originally came with Duck Tales, Chip and Dale’s Rescue Rangers. Tough rat that kinda has a fake Aussie accent; oh and don’t put any cheese by him. Also there’s a minor change; Since Chip and Dale can talk to people, he can. (I figure that works)

Gadget – Again, from Chip and Dale’s Rescue Rangers. She’s an inventor; I’ve changed her background a little bit as in she helped design the first gummi ships in the first place. Same deal with the talking, too. Oh and canon is blond hair. I checked. And yes, that’s the correct spelling of her name; I swore for a while when I saw it (not long after my brothers got the original Kingdom Hearts, as a matter of fact) that her name was “Gigit”..Must of been Monterey’s way of saying it, lol.

Zipper – Brave, tough fly who’s really loyal to Monterey. I’m keeping the fact that he doesn’t really talk; of course Gadget and Monterey can translate..and someone else..don’t make me spoil it..

Okay, now for stuff you wouldn’t know..

Tarutaru abuse/tarutaru punting – This is actually a injoke Square is aware of! I understand a character threatened to punt Shantotto in Dissidia. Just so you know; this can either be a tease or serious. It all depends on the context. Let me explain real fast.

Teasing: I’ll explain the way to tease by relating a CurseTheYagudo story. So okay, there was this Galka called Zaalus in the shell. Thing is, that Galka kinda liked to pick on Nimbex (maybe it was his pointy head? I’ll post a screen later, but his FFXIV chara still is a pointyhead. His XIV chara is about the same acutally, except his XI chara had grey hair) and call him football, and go *Zaalus punts Nimbex over the moon* or *Zaalus dribbles and punts Nimbex* on the shell and in person at every opportunity. If you see something like that, they’re just teasing.

Person FURIOUS at taru aka. serious: If you see someone say something about “I’m going to punt that damn/>>insert favorite cusswords here<< taru”, then it’s serious. Translation; the speaker is PISSED at that specific taru.

By the way, for the curious; there’s other ways tarutarus get abused. I’ve seen everything from stuffing’em in sacks and throwing them in the river/moat, to some folks in MithraPride eating tarus..Uh. I think eating them for lunch is too far. I’d rather pouncetacklecuddle’em, most cases. ^_^

Black ink being expensive – I thought I’d better explain this. Black ink is actually used in a ninja tool called shihei, which is used for a spell called Utsusemi. This is a spell that Ninjas in FFXI use to actually stop themselves from getting hit, since even tho the devs didn’t intend this, Ninja is used as a tank in FFXI. Since ninjas cast that spell A. LOT. black ink is very valuable. There are universal ninja tools now, just so you know, but last I knew, shihei still sell well.

Also there’s a few things not in game that I mentioned were made by this or that. I figure, there would proly be ways to say, make a shell comb, a fountain pen, or handkerchiefs, realistically speaking, tho the crafting system is more geared toward furniture and gear in game. (Obviously, I think.) So anything I mention that if you checked FFXI Wiki, that isn’t really in the game, proly just takes materials that ARE in the game and is for realism in the fic only.

Also I highly recommend that you watch the CS’s for A Shantotto Ascension if you want to know what Shantotto did now: A Shantotto Ascension Playlist. If you don’t care to, well, all I’ll say is: BAD TARU! No pie for you!


So, enough beatin’ around the bush. Here we go!


Chapter 1
A Rather Bad Day


It had just been another day at school. Hayner, Pence and Olette came out, chattering and joking about what they were going to do after they got their homework done. They decided to cut around back on their way to the usual spot.

Just as they got near the cafeteria dumpster, they heard a loud “BANG! BANG! BANG!” and it rattled a bit. Pence jumped 6 feet.

“Don't tell me there's a dog in there...” he said. There was more loud bangs, and a voice said, “Yuuuck, when I get outta here and catch that goddess-damned taru, I'm gonna punt her ta the moon...”

“Wait!” Hayner said. “Did the cafeteria just get a ghost?” There was more banging and the dumpster shook, along with some muttered cussing neither of the three caught very clearly.

“Silly guys.” Olette cried. “It's a girl stuck in there, I think..”

“What stuuuupid bully did that?” Hayner growled.

“Hang on, let's see what I can do. We can find out after.” Olette said, then went up by the dumpster (of course it stunk). She then knocked on it, and cried out: “You in there, need some help?”

“If ya know an easy way ta get out of this damn thing, yeah...”

“Yeah I do. Hang on, this thing has a door..” Olette quickly found it, and pulled it open (it didn't come open easily but that was the way with most dumpsters). She then reached her hands down, and pulled out...a rather odd looking girl. First thing, she had a banana peel on her head in a pretty silly looking fashion. (Probably from the garbage) She wore something that kind of looked like a blue and gold tiara with a flat top on her head as well; her eyes were light blue, and her long hair was am odd lavender color, tho in the sun it glowed like a pearl. She wore some odd clothes which were purple and black with gold accents, with black leggings that went to the knee and had lace on the cuffs; she also wore a brooch with a dark stone in the middle of a red bow. But the oddest thing of all was her ears. They were long, thin and pointed and stuck out a few inches from her head.

She stood up once her feet were on the ground, hands on her hips. “Hey thanks. Damn thing...” She picked the banana peel off her head and threw it back into the dumpster.

“How did you get in there?!” Pence asked.

“Uh, long damn story. All I'll say is not on purpose and I got a score ta settle when I catch 'er..”

“Um..” Hayner said.

Olette guessed what would come next and made her decision. “Guys, excuse me. I think we got a girl problem here to begin with.” She looked at the girl, “Would you mind coming with me? I think my mom wouldn't mind you getting a bath and getting cleaned up.”

“Hey, thanks again.” the girl said, moving a bag from her back to one shoulder that Olette didn't notice at first. “Got a spare set of clothes, but...”

Olette nodded. “Yeah, yeah. I can guess.” She called to her other two friends, “I'll meet you guys at the usual spot in an hour or so, this prolly won't take that long; then we'll get our homework done.” The boys nodded, and then they ran off.

Olette nodded to the girl, and then said, “Let's go. What's your name, by the way?”

“I'm Prishe. An' you are?”

“Olette. It's a shame that you ended up in that thing...”

“Phaugh, I know. Can't stand my own damn stink at the moment..”

They walked a little bit, then Olette decided to ask the question she was sure the boys would want to know later. “Um, who's “she” by the way?”

“Doctor Shantotto. She's 'bout as tall as a four year old kid, and has blond hair and brown eyes. You guys'd better leave her alone if ya find her; she ain't someone ya wanna tangle with. She's got a hell of a bad temper!”

“I'm guessing she's trouble?” Olette, of course, hadn't heard of anyone by that name. She guessed Prishe had come from...elsewhere, like Sora and Kairi, and it sounded like Prishe wasn't the only one who was from elsewhere this time.

Prishe nodded. “Believe me, she can be. Just tell your friends ta not pick a damn fight with her; They'll wish they hadn't.”

It wasn't long after that that they ended up at Olette's house. As they came in, Olette heard her mom yell from the kitchen; “What's that horrible smell?”

“It's okay, Mom. Some bully pushed a poor girl into a dumpster; brought her here so she can get cleaned up.” Olette didn't feel like explaining more than that, especially since she didn't know the full story.

“Oh, okay. I'll ignore it then.”

It didn't take them long to get upstairs; it turned out Olette had to show Prishe how to work the bathtub, but Prishe was still glad for the bath.

Just my damn rotten luck, Prishe thought as she scrubbed herself. Why the hell was Shantotto messin’ with that damn spell at the end of the Moonreading Ceremony? Not sure where I am, either, but this sure ain't Windhurst. Luckily Olette's got a kind heart, I can sense it. Don't think she would of helped if she knew about my damn secrets, but for now, I'm just glad I found someone friendly.

It didn't take long for Prishe to finish scrubbing herself and washing her hair (that had a lot of trash-ick in it) and drain the tub, but then she grabbed a couple towels, made sure her front was covered (she didn’t want to explain the scars she had on her chest and stomach) and headed to Olette's room.

Olette had found some leather cleaner and was cleaning Prishe’s shoes. “Ugh!” she said. “Man, you sure got that stuff on you..”

“Nothin’ a good scrub won’t fix.” Prishe said, then carefully reached for her bag. She took out her spare outfit. (which of course, wasn’t messed up at all. Thank heaven for goblin-made bags)

Olette was surprised but Prishe guessed she’d never seen goblins or the bags they liked to make for people. “Everything in there’s okay?”

Prishe nodded. “Tough bag. Nothin’ gets in there unless I put it in there.” She noticed it’d been wiped off, and said, “Thanks for cleanin’ it..”

“No problem.” Olette had finished with the shoes; Prishe got dressed with her back to Olette. Good thing I came prepared for trouble., she thought. There’s always that damn idiot that tries ta smuggle crap they shouldn’t onto the airship, and sometimes those things break down. So I had a spare set of clothes in case I got delayed.

She reached back into her bag for her comb, since of course now her hair was tangled. Soon as she got it out, Olette noticed..

“Hey, that’s pretty. Where did you get that?” What Olette didn’t know, Prishe guessed, was shell combs like hers were common as dirt on Vana’diel. It was made out of a couple seashells. Any apprentice boneworker could synth one, and a good one. But Prishe had a good answer to that question that she was sure no one would get nosy about…

“Ah, my best friend, Ulmia, got it for me a while back. Damn, I hope she’s okay..”

“Your friend’s missing?!”

Prishe hung her head. “Yeah, I don’t know where she landed...” She remembered…

Whoosh. Though the darkness of whatever damn spell Dr. Shantotto had cast (Shantotto had come with them, but Prishe didn’t see where that damn taru was), they fell, clinging to each other. Just as they both saw a light, Prishe realized her grip on Ulmia’s hand was starting to slip...Too late.

ULMIAAAAA~!” Prishe screamed as her friend was torn away from her…

“I really gotta find her. How hard could it be ta find a tall chick with auburn hair?”

“Prolly not too hard, I don’t think.” Olette said. “Auburn hair isn’t that common.”

It didn’t take long for Prishe to get her hair straightened out (Olette got her brush and helped out) and a fresh hair-tie in it, then go rinse off the..well, crystal hairpin (Prishe still didn’t know what it was made out of, but she considered it a good luck charm) and her headpiece, made sure her brooch was clean and pinned it back on, then straightened up.

“That’s a lot better. Thanks, Olette.”
“You’re welcome.” Olette picked up her bookbag, and passed Prishe a plastic bag with the garbage-smudged clothes in it.

“If you can’t find a place to get those washed, I’m sure my mom will let you.”

“Thanks, I’ll remember that.” Prishe carefully slipped the plastic bag with her clothes in it into her bag, picked it up, then stood up. Olette nodded, told her mom where they were going, and headed to the usual spot. Prishe warned the other two about Shantotto (“She may not look like anythin’ but she’s dangerous! Don’t even think about yellin’ at her!”) then said, “I’d better go on the prowl. Ain’t worried ‘bout Shantotto if she runs inta trouble, but I’m worried about Ulmia. Got ta find her before somethin’ gets her..”

Olette nodded and handed Prishe a map of this town...Which turned out to be called Twilight Town. “Thanks for the help, Olette.”

“No problem!”

Hayner chimed in, “If ya can’t find a place to sleep, come back here and you can crash on the couch. And watch where you go, there are places in town that people go in...and never come out of.”

Prishe promised to be careful, then went to look around. She didn’t find anything at first, then started to get a little hungry. Finding a nearby bench, she reached into her bag to get her lunch out.

Where is she?!, Prishe thought. I ain’t stupid enough ta yell unless I see her. But...if she’s here she couldn’t of gone far, right? She unwrapped her lunch; it was a coeurl sub sandwich. She took a bite with a sigh, knowing she didn’t have any more; she hadn’t expected much of a delay even if there was some trouble on the airship. No more than a day, anyway, and there was always the auction house in Jueno if she needed some food. Just as she did, something rubbed against her ankles and went “Mew? Mew?”

Prishe looked down to see...a orange kitten with big, brown eyes and three stripes on its back. “Now, where did ya come from?” she said. It seemed like the poor thing was wrought up somehow, for she started hearing its (his actually) thoughts: :Hey, could ya take me home with you? I hate this…:

Prishe thought a second. She knew strong emotions tended to make thoughts a lot more audible (and negative ones tended to make things worse); she could also sense the poor kitten was scared and alone, not to mention smarter than she expected. I don’t mind hearin’ an animal’s thoughts, so I’ll just listen so I can figure out what it wants to say; I ain’t heartless after all. Maybe the kitten knows somethin’ too. People however, hell..I hate finding out people’s secrets when their hearts are shoutin’ them to the world…even tho I know they don’t mean ta; damnit, it’s something no one can help...She took a quick breath.

“Kitty, I’m sorry. I’m a very long way from home, damn it...an’ I can’t keep ya anyway.”

:Aww, that’s kinda sad.:, it thought. :Hey, that smells good…:

Poor thing’s prolly hungry too, Prishe thought. She patted the bench next to her. “I don’t have much, kitty, but I can give ya a little of the meat n’ onions on this ta quiet yer tummy for a while.”

The kitten jumped up next to her. :Hey thanks!:, it thought. :How come ya can understand me tho? Most people can’t…:

Prishe leaned over close to the kitten, and whispered; “I can hear thoughts and know what people are feelin’; I don’t like that, it can get damn annoyin’ since people’s thoughts tend ta get loud when they get upset or mad. And don’t worry ‘bout it, I don’t like pryin’ too far and hearin’ stuff that I shouldn’t...so I’m just listenin’ for the echo of what yer trying ta say.”

:Wow!: the kitten thought. :Can ya hear...any person’s or being’s thoughts?:

Prishe winked, then whispered, “I can hear ‘em from almost anythin’ with a heart, tho I have some trouble with bugs; but bugs ain’t interestin’ anyway.” She took some of the meat and onions off the sandwich, put it on some of the waxed parchment the sandwich was wrapped in, then put it by the kitten. Prishe didn’t mind sharing a bit; things had been tough for a while back home, so any food people got was shared, else people would of gone hungry. She then said quietly, “Don’t tell anyone, okay? I don’t like talkin’ about it much..”

The kitten nibbled at the food, and thought: :I gotcha. Some of the dogs around here are scary, and some are just terrible at keepin’ secrets…:

What Prishe didn’t know at the time was someone was watching her from a nearby roof. Braig had noticed Prishe when she left from the usual spot, thought she was unusual, and then noticed her seemingly one sided conversation with the kitten. He stroked his face. “Huh...The old coot might want to know bout this. That girl probably won’t make a good vessel, but maybe she could help us, if I can find out how to talk her into it...” He decided to keep following her a while to see what she could do, besides talk to kittens.

Braig also was a bit miffed as it was. That..boy! The nerve, even tho they had him right where they wanted him earlier! It was a shame they’d failed; he would of made a decent vessel. The strange thing is, neither he nor the rest of the Org knew where Sora was right now. They did know he’d somehow woken up out of that; how, no one was sure. However, Xehanort had said that Sora was awake; no one knew what would happen next, but it was likely to be very difficult, if not impossible, to catch him that way again. Braig wanted a little revenge anyway after what had happened.

I dunno if we can get him now, he thought. We’ll be really lucky if we get the chance, but messin’ him up will do.

Back at the bench, both the kitten and Prishe finished their food. The kitten looked up as Prishe picked up the waxed parchment. (She didn’t want to be a litterbug) :Um...You might not be able to go home right now, but think we could stick together a while? There’s some dangerous things out here…:

“I believe it, some folks warned me ta be careful ‘bout which way I go...I’m guessin’ you’d really like ta find a home tho, right?”

The kitten nodded. Prishe then said, “Don’t lose that dream, kitty. A dream like that can be a light when things get a bit dark, okay?” She gave the kitten a scritch on the ears.

:Okay, I gotcha.:

“Anyway, I see no reason not ta stick together as temporary partners. We’re both strays, after all.” Prishe put a thumb into her chest. “I’m huntin’ for a friend that seems ta have gotten lost. Have you seen a tall, auburn haired chick with a leather harp-case on her back anywhere?”

The kitten shook its head. :No, sorry. I’ll tell ya if I smell something like you though; I assume she’s the same kinda person you are? Ya kinda smell different than most.:

Prishe nodded. The kitten continued, :Anyway, let’s go. I’ll let ya know if the area’s dangerous.: He jumped off the bench, and the kitten and Prishe walked off.

Up on the roof, Braig smiled. He had his angle now to try to get the girl on their side. Or so he thought. He followed, carefully not letting the girl see him, and hoped the kitten wouldn’t smell him.

As for Prishe and the kitten, they didn’t notice anything and kept looking around. Just as they went near a certain alley, the kitten started to shiver, then said/thought: :This isn’t a good place to be. Ya go in this alley and ya never come out of it…:

“I wonder why, kitty?” Prishe said. Just then a guy blundered in. A shadow like thing with glowing yellow eyes pounced on him. There was a scream, and a glowing heart popped out; the person disappeared. The shadow snatched the heart, then disappeared. More of them appeared...

Ugh, Prishe thought. Shadows that steal hearts? Time ta deliver a few knuckle sandwiches; I hope they can be killed… To the kitten, she said, “Get down. I can handle this..I think.” The kitten listened and hid; Prishe took out the knucks (figuring this was why Elizara had given her the Destroyers, even tho she was sure that cat hadn’t known exactly what was coming) and glared at the shadows, which took a few steps back.

“Ya damn creepy heart thieves! I’ll make ya eat knuckle sandwich instead!” she cried, then went in swinging. Her first punch connected solidly. It turned out they could be killed; when one died, it disappeared in a puff of darkness.

Braig’s eye widened as he watched the fight. It was really one sided; the girl was tearing up the Heartless left and right. At one point she even yelled, “Eat this!” and not only did the one she punched get destroyed, but five more in front of it got knocked down and stunned. When she got hurt, she cast Cure on herself; Braig didn’t expect that either. It didn’t take her long to destroy the Heartless.

That girl’s stronger than she looks, he thought. The old coot doesn’t want any girls as vessels or I’d suggest that. It was painfully obvious the girl was new in town, or she would of known about the Heartless.

It didn’t take Prishe too long to pounce on the last one and get rid of it. The kitten gladly came out of his hiding place. :Wow, you’re strong!: Just then, Prishe heard someone clapping. A guy came out with black and silver hair, pointed ears that were close to his head, and one visible golden eye (The other was covered by a eyepatch). The stranger wore a black cloak with a hood. The kitten started hissing.

“Good fight, if I do say so myself..”

Prishe glared. “Just who the hell are you?”

“Just a passerby. Maybe I can help you with your...problem...As if you could find your friend yourself...”

Prishe could really feel her hackles coming up. And as always happened when she was riled, she began noticing his heart…
UGH! It’s not only dark as pitch with not much light in it, but somethin’s eating it from within the darkness! This guy reminds me of Nag'molada; sneaky, smooth talker, but he wants somethin’ that’ll cause a hell of a lot of trouble! I don’t want his help, I have a feelin’ that the price would be too high ta pay, goddess damn it!
She did feel a little ashamed that that ability had gotten a bit out of control; usually she didn’t glance that deeply into a person’s heart. This was no time to show it, however; she had to get rid of this annoying idiot first and she knew it. She put her hands on her hips, backed up a bit, and said, “I don’t need yer help, One-Eye. I didn’t ask ya! Get out of my damn face!”

“..As if!”

Just then the kitten thought/said: :I’ll help!: and with a loud REOWWW! jumped right onto the guy’s face, clawing. Prishe did the only thing she dared do; run for it. I don’t like killin’ people, she thought. I’ll do it if there’s no other way, but this guy is just annoyin’. He ain’t given me a reason ta dish out a knuckle sandwich, so I won’t. Tho, no denyin’ from his heart, I know he’s a nasty guy.

She heard footsteps behind her; she guessed the guy had gotten the kitten off his face and was chasing. I’d better find a place ta go where I’d be hard ta pry loose! she thought. Sometimes it pays bein’ stuck as a twelve year old kid for this damn long… She saw a restaurant called “The Sunset Cafe”, ran in, and squoze herself between the wall and a bench near a table. The guy tried to coax her out first, then grabbed her arm and tried to yank her out, with Prishe protesting and trying to make sure he couldn’t do it.. Prishe heard the owner muttering something she didn’t catch, then..she saw two employees pick up this huge mop bucket (it had wheels) and dump it over the guy’s head. The water got on her shoes and knees a little, but that was it.

Prishe then heard the owner holler, “GET OUT OF MY RESTAURANT! I’ve warned you black cloaked people before, and I don’t want you here, so don’t come back!”

The guy went “tch!” then left. The manager then said, “It’s okay, little girl. You’re safe now.” Prishe crawled out and stood up. The owner was a pretty big, burly guy, but he had kind eyes. (She hadn’t gotten a good look, of course, when she’d ran in.)

The guy continued, “That guy was trying to do something funny, wasn’t he?”

I’ll go along with that...Prishe nodded. The manager then said, “Isn’t the first time they’ve caused trouble in here. They’re really horrible customers. Last time, they were really rude to the servers, and they never leave a tip. I swore if they ever caused any kinda trouble again, they wouldn’t be welcome in here, ever. You all right?”

“Yeah, I’m okay. Geez, what was his damn problem?!”

“Some stick up his rear, I guess. Anyway..” the manager whispered to a person behind the counter, then turned back, “I’ll get ya a drink, on me.”

“Hey thanks!” It didn’t take long for the lady to come back with with turned out to be a cherry limeade, which was new to Prishe (she had to ask what it was) since there were no limes back home. She’d never seen ice in a drink either; said ice was in pellets, with red specks from the cherries in the drink. It tasted delicious, though. Wow, nice guy and this is great, Prishe thought. She noticed that other people paid with money that was a lot different than good, old fashioned, Jueno gil; that told her she really was a long way from home. The workers that had dumped the bucket (of course) worked on cleaning up the water on the floor.

Ha on that guy tho, she thought. He ought’a known better than ta cause trouble in here when the owner was pissed. I know that damn rule; don’t tick off restaurant owners. They can have the culinarian do awful things ta yer food; I heard’a one back home that when anyone ticked him off, he had the culinarian put poison potion in their food. That don’t change between worlds, I don’t think. Well, not the potion, but they can still mess up yer food and make ya sick. Or..other things..ta make someone not wanna come back.

She finished the drink, gave the glass back and thanked the owner, then went outside. She found the kitten outside, licking a paw. “You okay?” she asked.

:I think so, he was pretty mean though.: Prishe decided to play it safe, and cast Cure on the kitten. “If he hurt ‘cha, that ought ta fix that. Anyway shall we keep lookin’?”

:I don’t see why not. Your friend has to be around here somewhere, right?:

The pair hunted around for several hours. There was no sign, not even a hint, of Ulmia. Neither did Prishe even see Shantotto’s pigtails; just a lot of humans and those dark shadow-things. Shantotto could squeeze inta some really small spots; tarus are small and short. But..I don’t think Ulmia could hide that easy; she’s a tall Elvaan…

The kitten looked up just then. :It’s getting late. Ya got a place to stay?:

Prishe shook her head. “I wouldn’t be a stray if I did...Well, got a place ta crash, but that’s no home really...”

:I got an idea. There’s a place not far from here which once was empty, but last week some folks moved in. They don’t seem to like four legged folk; I got shooed off with a broom. But..maybe they’d welcome a two-legged stray?:

“That’s a thought, and at worse I can go and crash.”

The kitten led Prishe to a street called Cherry Tree Lane; she could see the sign. It didn’t take them long to get to the place. It seemed to be a smaller sized house with a big yard; the street number was 1313. There was a little kid sitting in the yard. She was wearing a white hood that had cat ears on it; she was sketching something on a drawing pad. She had blond hair and blue eyes, and looked kind of cute.

:I’ll be hiding nearby.: the kitten said. :Good luck; I don’t want to be shooed away with a broom again…:

“Don’t blame you.” Prishe said quietly. She then squared her shoulders, and went to the gate. Just as she moved to open it, the girl looked up.

“Who are you?”

“Just a poor gal with nowhere ta go. Is there any grown ups I can talk ta?”

The girl looked like she was both annoyed and suspicious. “Hey, could I paint your portrait?”

That didn’t seem like anything dangerous, so Prishe said, “Well..okay.”

The little girl pulled a brush off her belt. Said brush had golden bristles, and a mostly white handle except for the far end, which was also gold. The girl actually started painting in the air with no paint, which surprised Prishe. Even then, she managed to make an incredible image of Prishe. The image reached out and punched Prishe hard, sending her flying and making her see stars.

A voice yelled out of the house. “RELM! Don’t tell me you’re painting the portraits of people who are just passing by again...” A lady ran out of the house. She had blond hair and blue eyes; her hair was pinned up, tho there were two long fringes by either side of her face. She was wearing a salmon vest, a skirt with pants under it, black boots, and glasses; she also carried a whip. (The “portrait” vanished at the holler, Prishe noticed)

The lady ran up, opened the gate, and ran over to Prishe, who was getting up. The lady smiled and held out a hand. “Are you okay?”

Prishe took the lady’s hand, used it to help finish getting back on her feet, then rubbed her chin a bit. “Yeah..Man, what the hell was that?”

“You couldn’t of known. Relm there has a very special gift; she can create portraits of people that she can control to fight for her as long as she uses that brush and doesn’t do it on paper.” The lady shook her head. “Pardon her; all of us are quite a bit hairtrigger after our journey.”

“Um..you ain’t from here either?”

The lady’s eyes widened. “Goodness..did you lose your world too?”

“Um..sort of. I think it’s still there, but I ain’t where I’m supposed ta be. Got caught in a damn spell...”

The lady slapped her head with the heel of one hand. “That sure sounds like a mess. What brings you to this part of town?”

“Looking for a lost friend. We got separated just as we fell into the world; me, I landed in a garbage bin..”

It didn’t take long after that for the lady to learn Prishe’s story. “I’ll have to ask Celes when she gets back to see if we can figure out what happened; she’s the best out of all of us at magic and might be able to figure out what that was.” The lady then cocked her head. “I’m Quistis Trepe, by the way. Call me Quistie. Luckily for you when that happened, I’d just finished tutoring the last kid for the day; been doing that to earn some munny. Don’t worry about the kid I was tutoring, he left out the back, and told me there was some funny business going on in the front yard.”

Quistie turned out to be a rather nice person (Prishe didn’t blame her for glaring at Relm). They went in, had some tea, and waited for the others. It didn’t take them long to get back. There was Celes, who dressed in yellow, wore armor, and bore a sword; Cecil, a paladin with white hair, blue green eyes, and with a tinge of purple in his lips for some reason, and Rosa, who was a white mage that, surprisingly to Prishe (since white mages didn’t do this back home) wielded a bow and arrows.

Celes politely asked for the garbage stained clothes; she cast a quick spell, then said, “Oooh, I’ve never seen the remnants of a spell like this before. It’s...a dimensional transport spell, I didn’t think that was even possible in theory!”

“Dimensional transport spell? What the freakin’ hell was Shantotto thinking?!”

“I don’t know, but I’d say she’s a little nuts and a genius at the same time! I think I can use the remnants to find out if the other people that came though it are alive. Shame the spell residue will wear off in a week, so let’s hope we can find them before then.”

“Can’t you locate ‘em exactly?”

Celes shook her head. “The problem with that spell is I have to know the person I want to find first. I don’t know either Shantotto or Ulmia, so I can only give a general direction, sadly.” She sighed. “The problem is, if you want to get home, they will have to be found. The thing is, to go home, since you went in together, even tho it was an accident, you’ll have to go back together and be close by each other when the reverse spell is cast, or it’ll fizzle. That Shantotto is probably ticked because she can’t go back right now because of that.”

Prishe’s eyes widened; she knew a ticked off Shantotto was not something you would want around. “I hope she don’t go slingin’ Flare, Freeze and Burst spells around. An angry Shantotto is a really scary Shantotto.”

Celes nodded. “Another reason to find her fast, before someone gets hurt, then.” She cast her spell; it turned out they were both alive and whole at the moment; as well as somewhere in town. Celes promised she’d recast that every morning, which was reassuring.

It turned out Celes was also trained in magic by someone called Merlin; she’d been involved in a mess that a guy named Ansem the Wise had had to squash 20 years ago. Someone was trying to do a rotten experiment to artificially enhance people’s magical power; some of the kids the guy had kidnapped had died. Celes(she’d been five at the time) one more who was still missing, and Relm’s mother(who was the only teenager in the bunch) were the survivors. Unfortunately, Relm’s mom had died birthing her eleven years later, but Relm had inherited her mom’s magical power, as well as got that painting ability. Celes and the other girl had shown up with incredible magical powers a couple years after the mess, so they’d been trained how to use them.

Both Celes and the other girl were not only good at magic, but also with blades; they became the only Mage Knights in a world called Radiant Garden. They became two of the castle guards. Quistie was a teacher in the college there before the crap hit the fan; Cecil and Rosa were also guards (Cecil used to be a Dark Knight then, but he overcame his darkness along the way here) so Prishe guessed it was better not to underestimate Rosa, tho she didn’t look like much of a fighter. (White mages, in Prishe’s experience, were not very good fighters. Elizara wasn’t bad with a club, but even then she couldn’t hold her own on the toughest monsters back home, for example.)

As for why they were here; three years ago, something had happened. Their world had nearly fallen to darkness; these five had just been flung away though instead of..well, something terrible, and had managed to find their way here though a dark realm and a corridor of darkness. Luckily Celes had a way to contact a guy called Scrooge McDuck, who had told them he’d had a townhouse that they could use as long as when they left, they’d leave it as it was before they came. (The guy was rich, Celes had said, and had a soft spot for her. Scrooge had also helped Celes find a supplier for Rosa’s arrows as well.)

Along the way, they’d found the means to build a gummi ship, which would allow them to go home. Celes hinted that they hoped their world was okay; they’d heard rumors that it had recovered somehow, due to some boy who wielded something called a keyblade. Right now though, they were working on the ship and resting, since they’d had a harrowing journey. They were kind enough to let Prishe stay with them, since they didn’t want a lost kid getting even more lost.

Quistie took the dirty clothes to wash them after the spell, which Prishe was grateful for, since she knew she’d have to wear them again. Celes told her not to worry, since the residue was on Prishe and everything she’d brought with her as well, so there would be no problem keying to that.

It didn’t take Rosa long to make dinner (Prishe gathered the girls took turns cooking; that was strange, since Prishe was used to crystal synthesis, not using pots and pans!) and they talked a bit. Then Prishe decided she had to reveal part of her secrets, since she felt they really needed to know what had come under their borrowed roof…

She bowed her head, then said, “I think ya guys outta know this. I may look twelve, but I ain’t.”

Cecil looked surprised. “What do you mean?”

Prishe shook her head. “I’m actually ‘bout eighty-ish. Long story; there was a really damn nasty accident, which gave me immortality and stopped me from aging for quite a while. Don’t ask, please. I don’t like remembering that damn mess...but it’s been reversed. So I’m prolly gonna finally grow up, which believe me, is a damn relief.”

Rosa spoke up. “Not too long ago, I take it?”

Prishe nodded. “’Bout three or four months ago. That’s another damn long story I’d rather not talk about, k?”

“We understand.” Quistie chimed in. “Even tho there’s stories about never growing up, I guess it wasn’t all sugar and sweets?”

“You bet it wasn’t, dammit.” If they only knew...Prishe thought. If they only knew...but that’s something that I hate talking about too… Aloud, she said, “Don’t ask tho; it’s really dammed painful for me. An’ please don’t tell anyone, I don’t want the world ta know about any of my damn dirty laundry.”

Everyone promised to keep it a secret, though Relm muttered something about “fuddy-duddy” which got her cuffed for being rude. Prishe was glad for that; she’d been sure she could trust these people.

Quistie was glad to loan Prishe a book so she could get up to speed on the world. Even though Prishe didn’t really like studying (Bleh, she thought. Tho now I wish I’d studied a bit harder; if I want ta be the Cardinal when I finally do grow up, I’m gonna have ta.) she figured it was a good idea and started reading.

The others also warned her about a couple rules, which were: don’t say you’re from another world unless you find out someone was a world traveler too, and try not to interfere in a world’s affairs unless it was your world. Prishe was glad that she hadn’t slipped up and mentioned she wasn’t from this world at all. She’d been lucky.

The book was more interesting than she’d thought. Just as she got to the third chapter, she noticed she had an annoying fly buzzing around her head. Naturally, she tried to swat it. Twice. The second time she nearly managed to get it, but before she was able to try again, she heard a funny squeak and a buzz, and then she was socked. Hard. She fell off the couch she was sitting on onto her backside, and dropped the book. The fly flew in front of her face. It was blue, with big yellow eyes, and had a red shirt on. It buzzed at her angrily.

Rosa looked up. “Oops. That’s Zipper...”

“’Scuze me?”

“That’s no ordinary fly. He’s pretty smart, actually..He and two of his friends have been helping us build the gummi ship. He can’t talk to people, though he can understand us.” The fly buzzed a bit and made a rather squeaky kind of “uh-huh” noise.

“Oh, sorry Zipper.” Thinking a minute, she dug in her bag. She fished out some parchment, a fountain pen, and some black ink. “Hey, Zipper; can ya write?”

The fly nodded and made that uh-huh noise again. Prishe carefully opened the black ink (she knew that was really valuable back home) and filled the pen, then put the cork back in the black ink bottle. She spread the parchment on the floor, then offered Zipper the pen.

“Careful with that, okay? I don’t have a lotta ink..”

Zipper nodded, then wrote on the parchment: “Apology accepted for the swatting; I know most people don’t look. Could someone please get Monterey Jack’s and Gadget’s supper?”

Rosa then said, “Sorry again, Zipper. I’ll go get the basket..”

“Mind if I run it over? If I know where, I can get it over ta them..” Prishe felt that since they’d said she could stay here, she ought to help out a little bit.

“Nah, it’ll save some time anyway. That’s a chore we all take turns on, and I think with all the crazy today, we all forgot.”

It didn’t take her long to go get the little basket they used to bring those two (Rosa said that Monterey was a rat, and Gadget a mouse) their supper. She warned Prishe not to open the dessert right away (cheesecake bites); “Monterey goes absolutely nuts if he smells any kind of cheese. Just make sure he doesn’t hog it all, and that Gadget gets some too.” She showed Prishe where on the map to find the warehouse (that belonged, again, to Scrooge) that was the hangar where they were building the gummi ship. (Scrooge had set that up last time he was here, before the crap hit the fan, so he’d have a safe place to land his ship.) It wasn’t far away, really.

It didn’t take Prishe long to get there, with Zipper leading the way. As she opened the door, she heard a voice say, “Eh there, is that a new gal I see?”

“Who’s there?”

A rat with a flight cap, a red mustache, green eyes, a blue sweater, and a tan jacket popped up on a nearby table. “I’m Monterey Jack. Is that supper?”

A mouse with blond hair (Prishe stared a little because she’d never seen anything like that), blue eyes, dark purple goggles on top of her head, and lavender mechanic coveralls looked up from a control panel to a crane...thing. “Aww Monty. And hey there.” She jumped down onto a ramp to join Monterey.

Prishe put the basket down and got out the main dish. “Hey. I’m Prishe; met up with the others earlier. I might volunteer ta do this most of the time...”

“That’d be quite all right.”, the mouse said. “I’m Gadget, by the way.”

When Prishe did get out the cheesecake bites, Monterey did go a bit nuts, but he understood that it was for both of them. Prishe learned that Gadget had been one of the inventors that had made the first gummi ships, tho she did have a thing to say about this one; “I’m not doing anything new, here. Interspace travel can be kinda dangerous if one little thing is off, so this is no time to invent a new way to do it. I did invent the cranes and the lifters we’re using though.” Prishe noticed that even tho they were well made, they did look like they were put together from pieces of junk.

Monterey then smiled and said, “Awww Gadget-love, you know what yer doing. How did ya show up on this ‘ere world, anyway, Prishe?”

Prishe then went ahead and told them her story, including what Celes had told her. Gadget started thinking a little, then said, “Brother. I don’t really like hocus-pocus like that, but I haven’t heard your friend while I was working…”

Prishe nodded. “If Ulmia was upset, yeah, you’d hear her. She tends ta play her harp when somethin’s buggin’ her.”

Gadget shook her head sadly. “I wish I could help ya, but I can’t be two places at the same time...”

Just then, Zipper started buzzing frantically. Monterey looked up and said, “Zipper ol’ pal, what are you so worked up about?” Zipper then made some more buzzing noises and a few squeaks; Monterey then explained; “’E says that he thinks he can try to help find those two. Just needs to get an idea on what they look like..”

Gadget brightened at that. “I’m not bad at drawing; maybe I can do a mug shot type one. I admit, I’m more used to drafting, but this isn’t that much different..” She pulled over a piece of paper and some kinda writing stick; Prishe carefully described both Ulmia and Shantotto. It turned out Gadget was decent at drawing things other than designs; they came out fairly close. Zipper took a good look and started buzzing and squeaking again; Monterey translated, “’E says that ‘e’d know them now. Not tonight, it’s just a mite too late, but in the mornin’ ‘e’ll go flyin’ around and see what ‘e can see.”

Prishe smiled at Zipper. “If you see either of ‘em and start buzzin’ around my head again Zipper, I’ll just tell ya ta get in front of my face so I can see ya. I’ll hold off on the swattin’ tho that’s force of habit; most flies don’t know the meanin’ of “stop that!”, but ya know that, right?” Zipper nodded. Prishe continued, “I’ll ask Quistie if there’s some paper and something to write with that’s a little less..er, sloppy.”

“Sloppy? What?” Gadget asked. Prishe showed Gadget the fountain pen. “Oh. You might want to ask for a pencil, that won’t make a mess. If you didn’t know, that’s what I was using.” She smiled.

Prishe nodded back. “Thanks Gadget. I’d better be gettin’ back..they might wonder what’s takin’ so long.”

“No problem!”


Prishe then went back to the house. They set up a cot for her in a side room. Just as Prishe put her head down, a bell in the back yard (at least that’s where the sound was coming from) started ringing like crazy. Prishe grabbed her shoes, and ran outside. It was that guy with the eyepatch, again.

“Hey, I see you found some friends...”

“What’s it to ya, One-Eye?”

“Well, I still don’t think you’ll find your friend so easily. Can’t we team up?”

Before Prishe could say anything, an arrow stuck itself into the ground right by the guy’s feet. There was a growl that sounded like Rosa. “You got five minutes to get your ugly butt out of here, or next one will be somewhere painful!”

Prishe looked up to see the sparkle of an arrowhead out of an upstairs window. I don’t think I want ta stand near that.. Prishe had been with rangers in Vana’diel before; they usually were pretty accurate as long as they trained well and had good gear. Not sure how it works here, but I don’t want to risk her missing. She backed to the side, away from the window, then put her hands on her hips. “No. I said, I don’t need yer damn help. Would ya rather eat knuckle sammwich instead?” She then made a show of cracking her knuckles.

The guy backed up. “As if! You’ll regret this...” He turned around as Prishe rubbed a finger under her nose, then said, “Heh, not damn likely..” Just as he waved his hand and opened a dark portal, Rosa shot him in the..well, ass..from the window. There was a yell, and he went though.

Once Prishe was back in the house, she found out that the reason that bell had started ringing was a spell from Celes. She’d basically developed some wards that kept Heartless and some white..things..away. However, that part didn’t work with anything intelligent enough to plan, so there was a second part of the spell. As Celes put it, “I kinda added a..suggestion..that makes people suddenly remember they forgot something important so they’ll just run off. That doesn’t always work with people with strong wills, so if they get past that, that bell rings. I enchanted it so even if people are fast asleep, it’ll wake everyone in the house. Rosa, naturally, is our first line of defense then since she doesn’t need to put her full gear on to fight, and can from the window.”

“Ha, try to scare them off by shootin’ at them, eh?”

Rosa nodded. “And if that doesn’t work, it buys a little time for everyone to get dressed and geared up.”

The spell also recognized anyone already in the house when people went to bed, as belonging there. Prishe resolved never to speak of it outside of the house, since you never knew who might be listening.

Not been my day., Prishe thought. Hopefully tomorrow will be better...
 
Last edited:

KingdomKey

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From start to finish, this was a fantastic chapter and well worth the wait. <3 I feel greatly amused at Braig for being shot in the rear end after poking into places he doesn't belong. That's twice he's tried to persuade Prishe into joining up with him. Hopefully he doesn't try to do it a third time. Although, they do say the third time is the charm. Hopefully Ulmia and Shantotto will be alright because, it'd be awful if either of them were taken hostage as a bargaining chip to get Prishe to go along with what he wants. Otherwise, it wasn't entirely a bad day for her because, she did make some new friends. xD All in all, I really enjoyed reading this chapter a lot.
 

maryadavies

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Sorry about the delay. I got distracted by a huge gaming backlog (Including Digimon Story Cyber Sleuth) and..does anyone know how to deal with a sister who likes to play a certain song over and over who doesn't own headphones?! Argh. Hopefully I can get her to stop that for my sanity.

Anyway DarkGreyHeroine finally finished a pic I wanted for this (was a commission; and I was planning on using that for this anyway; my friends are getting copies of their own for presents as a thank you for all the good times in FFXI), I added the group pic to the intro. Give her a hug guys.

Anyway hopefully I'll finish that chapter in a few days.
 

KingdomKey

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The picture DarkGreyHeroine is quite outstanding and lovely. C: I really can't wait to see what your next chapter will be like. And it's understandable if you're delayed by life, video games and more. So take your time. There's no pressure and it'll be well worth the wait to read your next chapter soon! I think my favorite character in the picture provided in the opening is Elizara. Or perhaps Cydori. I like Dragoons. <3
 

maryadavies

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Okay here we go! Sorry about the long wait.

I don't think I need to introduce anyone here but there's a few things I have to mention.

Sweets and mages -- You'll see Prishe thinking something about this. This has to do with a little FFXI headcanon I have. Most of the good mage foods other than one that's a fruit parfait in FFXI are sweets, like gelato, cream puffs, pie, etc., I always thought black mages craved sweets b/c magic takes a LOT of energy, so the mage tends to crave sweets pretty badly, and doesn't tend to get fat b/c of all the energy they're burning. Considering that Aqua <3s sweets and that I know our fine director did some chara design on FFXI, maybe a bit of THAT ended up in KH. I fixed it so it'd work with the "even if they don't like them" comment, because we all know Terra doesn't particularly care for sweets..right?

Eating in general -- I think I need to mention this. I know a lot of it has been batted back and forth a bit, and yar we haven't seen Sora eat more than ice cream (lol.). I have another little headcanon here; he's been eating offcamera now and then when he needs to. Why? For one thing, SINCE WHEN have you seen Disney charas eat much? I think I've seen Goofy and Donald eat a bit in one short involving a trailer/camper, and a few charas have eaten a bit on camera. Not much though..Also I think the tech wasn't completely there yet. Also there's the silverware vs. chopsticks thing; the devs are prolly lazy. They don't want to animate a meal scene twice. I do hope they have a reason for Sora to be eating lunch or something in KH3, though.

As for the ice cream; I think if you look at what the Japanese do, that's not a meal, that's a snack. So we really haven't seen Sora or any of the main charas eat something meal-ish yet. Also I didn't have Sora pick stuff off his burger; he's supposed to be the opposite of Noctis, which makes me think Sora's not that picky a eater, other than possibly a common thing I see in anime about bell pepper. That is, a lot of Japanese kids think bell pepper sucks, like kids in the West think broccoli sucks. I've seen that bit in Sailor Moon, a new show you can find on Crunchyroll called Sweetness and Lightening (or Amaama to Inzauma, if you want the japanese name.), and in the Pokemon anime, and it is so prevalent that bell pepper's disgusting to kids in Japan that they changed the broccoli in Inside Out to bell peppers for the JP audience. So there's a pretty good chance that if you offered Sora something with bell peppers, he'd go "Yuck!" (I can see Riku daring Sora to eat some bell pepper. Yes, that'd be funny if he doesn't like said bell pepper) No it's not canon..yet. But it's more "sorta likely". I just prefer to just mention that, tho I'm not going to have that in fic even tho I find it really interesting.

Oh and according to this, burgers and fries are really darned common in Japan, and Mickey D's in Japan was even a teenage hangout at one point.

Grouchy Old Woman thing -- Yet another that isn't canon but I think it's likely. I think every little town has a grouchy old woman somewhere. ^^

Donald's elf comment -- So okay. I figured that with Prishe's pointed ears, there had to be a rotten comment somewhere about it, since most of the people Sora's seen with pointed ears up until now have been Org members (bad guys). I chose Donald to make the rotten comments since 1. He's been known to be a little greedy and 2. He's known to be a asshole at times. Oh and there exists a live action Disney movie called Darby O'Gill and the Little People, which is why he makes the pot of gold comment. I figure that movie is pretty blasted obscure (Heck, I only knew about it since my dad bought it as a videotape! You should see our movie collection, tho we don't have a lot of the newer Disneys) so I have to mention that. And yes, yes Elvaan are sometimes called elves. No lie.

Okay enough beatin' around the bush again. Here we go.


Chapter 2: Worlds Meet


No one seemed to notice that Prishe was on the prowl, tho Prishe had to deal with Seifer. (he’d called her “pointy ears” which infuriated her; she had to remind herself that no one around here had seen a Elvaan before) Other than that, it had been a fine morning, tho there was no sign of either that one eyed guy, or either Shantotto or Ulmia. Prishe knew that looks could be deceiving, however, especially since that guy seemed to be good at hiding.


I hope that guy doesn’t find Shantotto and make the mistake of ticking her off. , Prishe thought. Little does he know; that’s rule 1 of dealing with Shantotto. Do not annoy or tick her off or ya’ll end up fried or worse. At least he only thinks it’s only one friend; I only know Shantotto, I’m not really that good a friends with her. But I don’t want him and any friends he’s got messin’ with that taru, so I hope we find her soon.


Prishe also admitted that, even tho she had made some friends (who were also looking, tho she didn’t know if they were having any luck, either), no one really knew her well enough to be close. There was an aching spot in her heart that meant she was lonely…


Blah, I’ve been alone before...last time I was bein’ a bit stupid an’ not realizin’ how bad the damn trouble was, or I would’ve not gone ta the trouble ta try ta find an airship to get home, and all that. I can take it, tho damn..Wish Elizara was here. She’d know what ta do. And I’ll feel better once I find Ulmia...


Just as she turned a corner, she saw a big old Heartless. Hoo boy., she thought. This one’s gonna be a mess...She took her knuckles out and charged….
========================
Sora, Donald and Goofy had just showed up in Twilight Town. Sora then decided to talk to the crew before he went about his business.


Hayner said, “There’s this weird girl running around with pointed ears...”


Donald went, “Wak? She got a black cloak?” (He knew they didn’t know about the org, so there was no use saying anything about it.)


Olette shook her head. “I don’t think she’s one of them. Her ears stick out a mile as it is. Anyway she gets a bit grouchy if you mention the ears..Not sure why. There’s been some folks with black cloaks wandering around, not even Seifer will mess with those guys. I’m afraid they might try something funny with that poor girl. Sora, could you keep an eye out for her?”


Sora smiled and nodded. “Sure. Don’t worry about it.” He put his hands behind his head, tho to be honest, hearing the Org was prowling the town worried him a little. Not again...I’d better be careful. I don’t know what will happen if they catch me again, and I don’t want that. Not ever.


After a few more minutes, the trio went looking around. They ran into a few groups of Heartless, but nothing that major.


Just as they turned a corner, there was a cry of, “Aw, hell!” and a girl rolled over and over to stop at Sora’s feet. Sora jumped back, a little startled. The girl jumped to her feet...She had thin, pointed ears, long lavender hair that shone like a pearl for some reason, odd looking clothes, and wore a flat tiara-thing. She glared in the direction she’d been flung from, then glanced back as if realizing there were people behind her.


“You’d better run. There’s some really damn bad trouble comin’..”


Just then, the “trouble” showed up. It was a Heartless that walked on four legs, like some kind of robot, with three claws on the end of each leg. It also seemed to have one evil red eye, and had four horns that faced backward. The Heartless symbol was on the thing’s back. The girl raised her fists (in which she was holding some metal...things..that covered her knuckles) in what was unmistakeably a fighting stance.


Goofy hollered, “A Heartless! And a big one!” and pulled out his shield. Donald also got ready. Sora summoned his keyblade, and the fight began.


Sora pushed off and slashed; the thing shot missiles, tried to step on people, would jump up and stomp..basically, this thing was mean. The girl noticed that Sora and his friends were trying to help, and not only bashed, but would toss cure spells out when needed. They whittled away at it by bashing and with spells, with the girl helping. Suddenly, it cast Reflect...they couldn’t scratch it for a moment, until the girl went, “Hell. I know what ta do..” She went into a backwards cartwheel, then yelled: “You can’t stop this!” and went into a drop kick with her face facing away from the monster. A wave shone around her feet; the spell just..shattered as her feet connected. The girl landed on her face after that, but rolled over and jumped up.


Unfortunately, right after that, the thing jumped up and stomped..when everyone was on the ground. Everyone got knocked down, but the girl came to the rescue again. She got up, cried out “Curaga 2” and cast a healing spell that hit everyone. Sora said “Thanks!”; the girl nodded back, then opened up with an attack that was eight hits, while she yelled, “Nighty-night!”


Goofy threw his shield at its back at the same time; the thing flinched. Sora and the girl’s eyes met a moment; it was like that moment they knew what the other was going to do. The girl raised her fist, her whole body shone, and then she gave the thing an uppercut while yelling, “Open your eyes!”. This flipped it over, with its legs waving in the air in a fairly silly fashion. After a few more spells and smacking it around a bit more, the girl did the eight hit attack again...Just as Sora gave it a good wack with his keyblade. The thing released a huge heart, and disappeared.


The girl looked a little startled, but turned their way after she put her weapons away. “Thanks. After that damn thing kicked me, I didn’t know if I’d be able ta get rid of it..”


Sora smiled and nodded. “You’re welcome.”


Donald then looked up, glared at the girl, then asked, “Wak! What’s with those EARS? Stickin’ out like that?”


The girl’s face screwed into an expression of extreme annoyance. “Geez, that’s none of your business!” She stamped off.


Sora cried out, “DONALD!”, for he was a little annoyed.
Donald hung his head. “Those ears are weird...and I don’t know about that girl, wak..”
Sora then realized something..”You were just trying to protect me, right?”
Donald nodded.
Goofy then said, “Gwosh, there could be a trap..”


Sora nodded. “I don’t think anyone could trick Olette, though..But we’d better be careful.”


There were nods all around, and then they went tromping off in the general direction of where the girl went. They didn’t go far until Sora heard the racket…


“One-Eye, I said, NO! I ain’t helping ya. Go bug someone else!”


A familiar voice that sent a chill up Sora’s back then said, “As if you couldn’t without my help. Why not? It won’t take long..”


“NO! And ya get your damn grubby hands off my hair!”


There was a smack, and then something fell at the three’s feet. It was a rather interesting crystal hairpin. Donald looked at it greedily; Sora nailed him with a glance, then picked it up. He said quietly, “This is proly hers...so I’ll give it back. Geez, though..”


He heard the girl yell, “What kinda crap are ya tryin’ ta pull?! Get away from me, dammit!”


Sora noticed his stomach was starting to bug him (it’d been a long time since breakfast; felt like it’d been weeks since he’d last eaten anything) but this had gone far enough. He could tell that Donald and Goofy were annoyed too about this; that girl hadn’t really done anything wrong, far as anyone could tell. It really looked like she could use some help, and his friends knew that this was something he couldn’t walk away from. So he walked over there, his friends in tow.


“Hey! She said ‘no’; can’t you take a hint?”


Braig raised an eyebrow. “So, the old coot was right. Didn’t think you’d wake out of that, but you did..”


Neither of them noticed that the girl..Prishe..was actually stunned when Sora had spoken. What the..that boy? He has such a bright, pure heart, tho it has quite the nasty dark shadow on it..I’ve never sensed the like! It’s kinda like a little kid’s... She was ashamed again, since she didn’t mean to do that, but she took care not to show it. It took her a second to shake herself out of it, but she could see the boy was fairly annoyed and was glaring at One-Eye. The boy growled; One-Eye then said, “You’re got more lives than a cat..I don’t know how you got another chance, but you aren’t getting anywhere..”


Oh yeah? Prishe thought. That boy’s innocent, far as I can tell. Why are ya picking on him, buster? Time ta remind One-Eye that I ain’t been called ‘The Abhorrent One’ for nuffin’, tho I really hate that damned nickname.. She picked up a garbage can lid, tossed it into the air, then punched it hard so that it slammed into the wall right by that guy’s head. He jumped, then she advanced a bit on the black cloaked guy, cracking her knuckles.


“Haven’t ya caused enough damn trouble for one day? Get the hell out of here or I’ll break your ugly face!” Prishe growled; she was actually faking being in a fury (she was only seriously annoyed); but she knew most folks, unless they knew her very well, couldn’t tell when she was faking it, and she wasn’t afraid to use that as a weapon if the situation called for it. She felt this was one of those times.


The guy backed up. “You’ll regret it..” and he ran off. Prishe stuck her tongue out at his back and said quietly, “No I won’t, idiot.” She took a couple deep breaths (for appearance’s sake; she didn’t want that boy and his friends to think she was still mad), then turned around. Ain’t going ta blow him off this time if I can avoid it., she thought. With a heart like that, he proly wasn’t happy about it. Not to mention considering, I think he might appreciate honesty; deep down, even if his head knows that life ain’t fair, his heart prolly isn’t happy when things aren’t; little kids believe in ‘fair’ most of the time. Lucky it also means that he’s a good guy, so I don’t have nuffin’ ta fear. So I ain’t gonna tell no lies. Not ta mention...is he the boy Carbuncle talked about? Blue eyes, all right. Blue as the best sapphires from the Goldsmith’s Guild in Bastok. So..I’d better be careful anyway. Don’t wanna blow it..


“Heh heh.” she said, “Hey, thanks for at least tryin’ ta get that ass ta leave..He’s been driving me nuts.”


“No problem. Hey, is this yours?” The boy handed her the crystal hairpin.


“Thanks. That damn idiot snatched it out of my hair; I swatted it out of his hand before he could do anythin’ but I didn’t see where it landed.” She put it back in her hair where it belonged.


The duck-guy then said, “Why was that guy after you, wak?”


Prishe shook her head. “Dunno. All I know is he creeps me the hell out. Feels like someone cast an Ice spell up my back.” Don’t wanna reveal that I can sense hearts. It’s bad enough when people figure out I can hear their thoughts; that creeps ‘em out bad; at least I don’t have to mention that…or the fact I can sense people’s feelings… “He kinda reminds me of a certain...person..back home; real nasty guy, tho I didn’t know it at first.” Damn you Nag'molada! I still don’t like what he did, and I know he’s dead now, but.. Prishe shivered. “Anyway, he won’t leave me alone. I don’t want a thing ta do with him, but he really wants somethin’ out of me, and I have a feelin’ it ain’t gonna be nice...”


The duck-guy nodded and relaxed just a little bit; the guy with the dog-face shook his head then muttered, “Gowsh, that’s sure a mess...” I ain’t going ta do my usual and give any of these guys a nickname to call ‘em by., Prishe thought. Rather not step on anyone’s toes, and I get the impression these guys are wary, like something rotten happened recently and they are trying to cover their asses a bit. One-Eye’s one thing, but that’s him. I know full well words can hurt; dammit, one has ta choose them wisely so they won’t..


Prishe smiled, then said, “Enough with the beatin’ around the damn bush. I’m Prishe, who are you guys?”


The boy smiled, then said, “Sora.”
Duck-guy went, “Donald.”
The last guy answered, “Goofy.”


Prishe shook hands around. “Pleased to meetcha!”


Sora smiled. “Just curious; why do you have ears like that?”


Prishe was annoyed, again but she could sense the question was just innocent curiosity. That’s the fourth time today someone’s made a comment about the ears, but hopefully I won’t have to total blow him off again or evade it.. She raised an eyebrow, then said, “That’s kinda a tricky question...”


“Why’s that?”


“Well...this may sound weird but..do you guys know of other worlds?” Prishe guessed that was the truth, but better to be sure.


Sora and his friends looked startled, and Prishe could sense some confusion (of course, that didn’t seem to have anything to do with it), but she saw them all nod. Prishe then continued. “Phew, then I don’t have ta hide the truth. To be honest, these”, she pointed at one of her ears, “just mark me as someone who don’t belong here ‘cuz I came from another world; hell, I’m not human, even.”


She could sense Sora’s surprise. He asked, “Then what are you?”


Prishe gently smiled back, then explained, “I’m what’s called an Elvaan on my world; some folks call us elves...”


She saw Donald rub his hands together (Or was it wings?) then he asked, “You wouldn’t have a pot of gold around here anywhere, would ya?”


Sora turned to Donald, glared, then cried out “Donald!!” However, Prishe laughed. “Silly. I can’t make gold or nuffin’ like that appear out of air. Not ta mention my hometown’s recoverin’ from a damn huge mess; we’re still kinda poor. Prolly gonna be years before it gets back ta how it was...”


Donald then went, “Awwwh!” while he got elbowed by both Goofy and Sora. Prishe knew the signs; these guys were really good friends and had prolly been though a lot together.


Sora then asked, “How did you get here, anyway?” but his stomach growled at the same time. Oops!, Prishe thought. Thought I saw him cast a few Fire spells in that fight earlier; I swear, anyone who does black magic has a horrible craving for sweets, even if they don’t like’em. But..he’s fifteen? Sixteen maybe? Prolly still growing if I know humans...and that’d make things worse! If he was hungry before, he’s prolly starvin’ now...


As Prishe was thinking about that, Goofy scolded, “Sora! Why didn’t you say you were hungry earlier?!”


Prishe decided that this wasn’t a time to tease too much, and said, “Hmm, someone forgot the grub? When did ya last get somethin’ ta eat?”


Sora blushed (Prishe could sense he was a little embarrassed); but before he could say anything, his stomach growled again.


Prishe shook her head gently, not wanting to make this worse. “Nevermind, I know a good cafe not too far from here.”


Goofy looked at her cautiously. “There..isn’t gonna be trouble over there, right?”


“Dun worry, I don’t think anythin’ bad’ll happen. Besides, if you’re worried about One-Eye, the owner of the place hates that idiot’s guts. The owner had a couple workers dump a bucket of mop-water on him and tossed him out on his ear when I was there yesterday.”


Prishe sensed that Sora was trying not to laugh. “You..serious?”, he said.


Prishe then nodded and said, “Shame I didn’t see too much, I had squoze under a table ta try ta get my ass away from him.”


That did it; first Donald started laughing, then the other two joined in. Prishe couldn’t help herself, she laughed along with them, then she said, “Wasn’t funny then, is now tho..”


Sora smiled. “I can imagine.”


“’Tanyway, I wouldn’t wanna go somewhere myself ta get some lunch where I’d be lookin’ over my shoulder for trouble. That ruins yer appetite. Let’s go. I’ll tell ya guys the whole story after we get some grub.”


It didn’t take them long to get to the Sunset Cafe. As they walked there, Sora thought..This girl seems nice., he thought. But I remember what happened last time someone near that age seemed nice. Hopefully she’s telling the truth, and odd thing here. I keep thinking about that old woman that chased me and Riku out of her yard at home that one time..I wonder why? Not that I’d tell Donald and Goofy about that one; that’s just too embarrassing..And Riku would be really mad anyway if I said anything about it...


Sora shook his head at the memory; they’d just been trying to get a ball back, and that lady had been really grumpy; she’d swatted Riku with the handle end of the broom. Maybe it was because that lady had a really dirty mouth, but Sora wasn’t too sure. But..it didn’t matter, he thought.


His stomach growled again; that was getting annoying. Just then they got to the cafe; he smelled it long before they got here, but that prolly showed how hungry he was. They followed Prishe inside; the owner nodded and smiled at her. “Brought some friends this time, girl?” he said.


Prishe nodded. “No trouble tho this time, sir. Just lookin’ for lunch; would ya have a back table open?”


The guy nodded and motioned over to the back. It didn’t take them long to go over there. She then turned to Sora and his friends.


“Noticed when I was here before that I couldn’t hear anyone talkin’ back here. As long as we keep our voices down and keep an ear out for the server, we can say what we like.”


They sat down and there were nods all around. Sora looked around fast; there was no sign of Braig. After that, Prishe could sense Sora’s heart relaxing a bit, and could see the rest of him was, too. It’s okay., Prishe thought. Sora seems a little nervous, like One-Eye bit him in the ass not too long ago. But I doubt One-Eye’ll come in here again; he’ll only end up soaked again or worse, I think..that owner meant business.


A server showed up not long after they sat down to take their order. (they ordered cheeseburgers and fries with lemonade to drink; Prishe asked for hers to be on her own bill, she’d gotten a bit of money from Quistie for lunch and wasn’t going to make anyone else pay her way, and she meant to find some odd jobs later so she wouldn’t need someone to give her some money). While they were waiting, Prishe dug in her bag as she explained:


“Well, for starters, my world wasn’t destroyed; something else happened. And when I find that damn taru, I’m gonna punt her but good.”


Sora looked puzzled. “Kick who?”


Oops., Prishe thought. Forgot that nobody here knows that old cliché.. “The one who started this whole mess for me at least; Dr. Shantotto. Just so ya know, she’s a member of another race from there, called a tarutaru; she’s about as big as a four year old kid and kinda plump. But thing is, back home, saying you are gonna punt a taru can either be a joke or serious. I ain’t joking tho; I’m actually pretty mad at her. Don’t mean I’ll actually kick her if I find her tho; I’m prolly gonna chew her out for what she did.”


Goofy then asked, “What happened anyway?”


“Hang on, was lookin’ for somethin’..Aha.” Prishe pulled out her map book, which was made fairly cleverly out of sheep leather, with a steel clamp on the spine so one could add more pages if need be. She opened it to the front page, which was a Vana’diel world map, and turned it toward the others.


“Had to get this out since you guys haven’t been there; easier ta explain with the maps. It all started yesterday mornin’. Me and Ulmia flew from the Tavnazian Safehold, ta Jueno here, ta Windhurst, since the Star Sybil had asked Ulmia ta sing for the Moonreading Ceremony.”


“Um..flew?” Donald asked.


Whoops again.,Prishe thought. “There’s airships that run all over this continent here.”, she tapped the map in the right spot, “I flew on a couple ‘a those. They look like a big sailing ship, but with huge propellers where the sails would be, and propellers on the back, an’ they can only land in water; so where there’s an airship dock, there’s always a big lake.”


She heard Goofy say something quietly about “Sounds almost like a gummi ship..”


Just then, she heard someone coming, and shut the map book, hissing “Moment, I think that’s our lunch.”


Prishe was right, the server had brought their food. The burgers were actually cut in half already to make them easier to eat. Sora picked up his knife and cut off about a bite, but didn’t eat it. Prishe noticed and thought: Wonder why he’s doing that?, she thought. He whispered over his shoulder, “Psst! Jiminy?”


There was a little movement from within the hood of Sora’s shirt, then a little head with a top hat poked out of the top. It didn’t take long for what turned out to be a cricket in a tuxedo to climb up onto Sora’s shoulder. “Thanks, Sora!” he said, took the bit of burger from Sora and started chomping on it. Prishe was a little startled by that.


“Hey there, little guy. Who are you?”


It swallowed, then said, “Sorry I didn’t say anything earlier. Jiminy Cricket’s the name.”
Shame I didn’t sense him., Prishe thought, but I’m terrible with bugs cuz at home, there aren’t any worth talking ta.


“Pleased ta meetcha!”


Sora smiled and picked up the half of his burger that he’d cut a bit off of. “He’s usually back there unless he’s waiting on our ship, right Jiminy?” He took a bite just after that.


Jiminy nodded. “I might have to; sometimes things just get a tad too rough.”


Prishe smiled, understanding. “Anyway, where was I?” Prishe thought a minute, ate a fry, opened the map book to the right page, then continued while people ate:


“We headed from Port here ta Windhurst Walls (the town has four districts)ta get ta the ceremony. Ya don’t need ta know too much about it; was boring as hell, tho Ulmia sang her best; she’s a damn good singer, if I do say so myself. After that was when the trouble started.” She tapped the map. “We went this way since an adventurer friend of mine, Elizara, had said she had a chocolate cake in her apartment ta share.”


Goofy swallowed. “A..cake?”


Prishe chuckled. “’Ol Elizara’s good at makin’ things like that. ‘Tanyway we went right by Shantotto’s house right here. Unfortunately I noticed a pretty nasty smell around the place, which I complained about to Ulmia. We decided ta check it out; Shantotto was standing on the rail over a big old kettle. Just as we got close and I started ta ask about the damn stink, she wove her hands and said somethin’ about setting herself free. A dark portal opened, she jumped in, but me and Ulmia got pulled in. We got separated; I don’t know where either Ulmia or Shantotto landed or are now. But anyway I landed in a garbage bin where Olette and her friends found me; I later found out from a gang of refugees from somewhere called Radiant Garden that it was a dimensional transport spell that Shantotto was playin’ with.”


“Yikes! How did she come up with that?” Donald asked.


Prishe shook her head. “I dunno, really. But thing is, I have ta find both Shantotto and Ulmia before we can go home; was an accident how all three of us ended up here, but Shantotto can’t reverse the spell without all three of us together, Celes said. Shantotto’s prolly pretty pissed; that could be dangerous since she’s known for havin’ a bad temper. And by that, I mean she tends ta throw spells around at anyone who annoys her when she’s in a bad mood. I haven’t heard of anyone who got a Fire or Lightening spell on their asses, so hopefully no one’s pissed her off.”


Sora swallowed. “Ew, it’s lucky I guess. But isn’t Shantotto going to get in trouble?” He took another bite, but Prishe could tell he was listening.


Prishe shook her head again. “Don’t think so. She was once the Minster of Magic in Windhurst; no one gets that position unless they’re a powerful mage. If she finds any Heartless, they’ll be ash, and I ain’t kidding. I’m more worried about Ulmia; Ulmia can’t really fight...”


Goofy’s eyes widened. “..Can’t fight?”


Prishe nodded. “I know you don’t know how things work on my world, but Ulmia’s a bard. That might not sound like nuffin’ but it means she can play or sing songs that can affect the world more than just makin’ people happy. But...none of those can do what say, a Thunder spell can do; she can’t kill anything. She can do a sort of poison or make somethin’ take a nap, but that’s about it. Most of what she can do is ta help those that can fight, like speeding up time for someone so they can hit faster, or sing somethin’ that’d help one’s mana regenerate faster. Damn, I wish she’d learned how ta use a dagger...then I wouldn’t be so worried!”


“Gowsh, she could end up in trouble really fast...” Goofy said, shaking his head.


Sora swallowed what was in his mouth. “We’ll help. She’s in town, right?”


Prishe nodded. “And still alive, far as I know.” She remembered her burger (luckily it hadn’t gotten cold yet) and took a few bites.


Donald said, “We’d better finish our lunch first, wak. Better not to run off with Braig running around...”


Prishe guessed “Braig” was the guy she had been calling “One-Eye”, so she swallowed, then said, “Maybe we can think about it first while we finish eatin’ and pay for this. I can tell ya what I know about her, and we can use that ta figure out where she prolly is. I sure haven’t had any luck findin’ her by prowling around. Oh and One-Eye knows, he’s been tryin’ ta bribe me with help ta find her, even tho he don’t know her name. I won’t help him tho and ya guys know why.”


There were nods all around. Prishe took a few more bites, then said, “First thing, she’s a tall, redheaded Elvaan chick; by now she’s prolly really dammed upset. That’s proly why he knows; he has been pretty good at hidin’ so he proly overheard me askin’ someone about her.”


Sora swallowed first, then said, “Makes sense.”


Prishe then continued, “Back home when she was upset, she’d go ta this cliff by the sea near the Safehold, play her harp and maybe sing a little. I haven’t seen any sea around here tho...”


“Wait..I think I know where. There’s a second district where there’s a big hill..maybe she’s there?”


“Crap, I guess I didn’t read my map too good...that’s a good place ta look at least...”


Little did they know that outside, perched on a nearby roof, was Braig. He hadn’t wanted more trouble (besides it wasn’t a good idea to pick on business owners, especially ones that didn’t want him around) so he just watched as Sora, Donald, Goofy, and Prishe went into the restaurant.


Damn, he thought. If she’d only listened, I might have been able to get some revenge on Sora now. But..I didn’t expect her to be that stubborn. Thought her situation would be irresistible, not to mention I think she’s the kind of person Sora’d like. Though..there is something a little uncanny about her..


Just then he realized that if Sora and Prishe stuck together a while, he might find an opportunity to get back at him. So he waited until they came out, then carefully followed. Hopefully, he’d get his chance, or so he hoped.

------------------

Okay! Next time; we find Ulmia and there's going to be a scuffle. Hopefully I can get that one done faster..
 
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Bufferino

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Okay, so I (finally) read the first three chapters of this! Looking great so far.
 

KingdomKey

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Sora is so adorable. I want to hug him because, I feel a bit bad for him having to deal with the aftermath of being used by the Organization like that. I'm glad Prishe is giving him a chance and being gentle with him thus far. You really nailed Sora, Donald, and Goofy as characters too. Braig, you just can't leave them be, can you? I like how all of them fought together against the heartless too. And Donald, you greedy duck, you. In a way, it's kind of cute that he's greedy, but I'm glad Sora and Goofy can keep him in line. C: I really look forward to the next chapter. And I'm happy they got to finally eat some tasty cheese burgers too. Great chapter as always!
 

maryadavies

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Cinder; I think how I felt about Sora after I found out what happened in DDD kinda bled though. (I was spoiled on that game long before I played it) I wanted to hug him and let him know, it's okay...you'll get another chance...

Also Donald was a greedy little duck in KH2 for a bit in Agrabah, I really thought that since fairies/elves in some stories are known for pots of gold that have to do with rainbows, including in that movie I mentioned (Not FFXI Elvaan tho) that that was a good way to have a amusing little "You dumb duck!" moment. XD It also makes sense to me that after that incident in KH2 and the trouble it could of caused, that Goofy and Sora'd be watching out for repeats and let him have it if they knew, say, that hairpin wasn't just there for the taking/it belonged to someone. Sora strikes me as a fairly honest guy after all.^^

And yeah, I do assume Sora's going to be a little...jumpy...for a while..until he figures a few things out. At least here; I figure that's natural reaction to a close shave like that. Mind, pertaining to KH3, I could be dead wrong, but we'll see; it works for the fic though.

I'll see if I can get the next chapter done soon; this one I won't have to do much research and hopefully RL won't bite me in the butt.
 
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maryadavies

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Man I'm slow. Anyway, finally.

Oh and I thought I'd mention. There's a little bit of threats of spanking in this one. Before you ask, spanking in FFXI is totally a thing!
[video=youtube;9dScU_S52h4]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dScU_S52h4[/video]
That video is not from the main storyline, but a quest..and most people laughed at that poor mithra kitten getting spanked for stealing/a prank. I assume it's not just in the past/Wings of the Goddess where kids get spanked for being bad, though. I have a vid of the full cs if people want to see but I chose that one b/c they have the sound effects up higher in that one.

Oh and I figure by now that Sora hasn't just been thinking about Roxas's situation too. You'll see what I mean.

Anyway, here we go.

Chapter 3; A Bad Song and An Uncovered Secret


It didn’t take them long after they finished eating to take care of things, make sure they didn’t leave a mess (Prishe approved; she knew her restaurant manners after traveling to all four towns on the main continent of Vana’diel; the Safehold was more of a village now sadly), paid for their meals, and left a tip.


There wasn’t any trouble on the way to the station; once they went aboard the tram to Sunset Terrace, everyone relaxed a bit. They talked about this and that along the way; Prishe found she was liking Sora and his friends more and more.


I guess I’m not quite so alone anymore., she thought. But..I don’t know what Sora and his friends would think if they knew what I’ve been keepin’ some damn nasty secrets...I’ve had too many folks just turn tail when they get even a hint of those damned secrets...I’ll enjoy it while I can tho.


They came to the right stop, and then they got off. It was pretty obvious Sora’s idea was right; someone was playing a harp, but it was a song Prishe hoped she’d never hear again...“I think we found her; but why did it have ta be that damn song she decided ta play?”


“It’s pretty, what’s wrong with it?” Sora asked.


Prishe tapped a foot. “It’s trouble, that’s what. That’s Lay of the Immortals; that song tends ta bring trouble like honey brings bees. We’d better find out where she is fast before she decides ta sing it..that’d really be trouble..”


Goofy moaned, “Oh boy..” and started running; the rest of them followed. It didn’t take them long to get to the hill and climb it. There, by the benches, was Ulmia, with her red (well, more carrot-orange than red) hair, and honey brown eyes. Her eyes were half shut as she played her harp. She’d also been crying; there were tears running down her face.


Prishe yelled, “ULMIA! Ulmia, there ya are!” and ran up to her friend.


Ulmia gasped, then looked up. “Prishe! Where have you been?!”


“Lookin’ all over for ya. I thought ya were a goner there for a while!”


Ulmia fastened her harp on her back. “I thought the same...”


Prishe winked. “You think anythin’ud get me? Naaaaah...”


“Anyway, who are these folks?”


“Oh sorry! These are Sora, Donald and Goofy, they’ve been helpin’ out..”


Ulmia carefully bent her head down so Sora could look her in the eyes (Ulmia was pretty tall, after all) and said, “Pleased to meet you guys!”


Prishe noticed Sora was a bit surprised at the fact that Ulmia was a grown up, but Prishe wasn’t going to explain that. It’s a damn mess either way. I’ve known Ulmia ever since she was eleven, but I know they don’t know that... She was really glad Ulmia was okay; it had been scary considering the Heartless out there. They shook hands all around.


Ulmia nodded to Prishe. “You haven’t been getting in really big trouble, have you?”


Prishe shook her head. “Nope; tho there’s some really damn nasty dark shadows called Heartless that are runnin’ aroun’ here. They’re no problem, most of the time; Met Sora and his friends here when I was dealin’ with a nasty one..”


Ulmia made a face. “I’ve seen them, and ran away from them...”


Goofy shook his head. “Gowsh, you’re lucky you didn’t get too mixed up with ‘em...you could of ended up worse than dead..”


Ulmia shook her head. “That bad..oh my. I’m glad I got away from them then.”


Prishe cocked her head. “Well, all’s well that ends well, I guess. Let’s get ta where I’ve been stayin’..you’ll be safer there, Ulmia.”


There were nods all around, and they headed back to the train station. They were halfway there when a black cloaked arm reached out and grabbed Ulmia. It was Braig again.


“Ha hah, you ought to respect your elders more.” he said, tho Ulmia was trying to get away.


Sora growled. “Let her go!”


Prishe chimed in, “Let Ulmia go, dammit!”


“Make me!” Braig drew out one of his arrowguns (Prishe thought it was a crossbow, but then that’s kind of what it looked like) and shot wildly. Sora blocked with his keyblade, but he had to deflect it toward the sea because there was a chance the reflected shots would hit Ulmia by accident. This gave Prishe an idea.


“Psst, Sora?” she said quietly. I wish there was a way ta do this silently, but oh well..


“Hm?”


“Can you keep him busy for a bit? I got an idea..”


“You got it~!”. Sora did his best to draw Braig’s fire while Prishe snuck around back, then gave Braig a rather vicious kick in the ass, right where he’d been shot last night. As she’d hoped (since that arrow had gone pretty far in, and Prishe guessed that even with cure spells he was having a bit of trouble sitting down today) Braig yelled..Which gave Ulmia a chance.


Using the self defense skills she had learned from her friend (because of some grabby guys a while back), Ulmia smashed her elbow into Braig’s chin, then stomped on one of Braig’s feet with her heavy boots. This made him let go; Ulmia then flipped her harp out, then growled; “You shouldn’t be grabbing people like that, mister!” then started playing a sleepyish tune with a flourish.


“Well, you should..uh..” he said, then he fell down asleep.


“Ha, ha!” Prishe laughed. “Got him with Horde Lullaby, didn’t ‘cha?”


Ulmia grinned. “It won’t last too long though; we’d better get away from here fast.” She raised the harp again, and played something that kinda went like this: “De da da da da da de da da” Prishe could feel it, and could tell the others felt it too; she’d explain when they got there, but that was Chocobo Mazurka. Good for you, Ulmia! Better that way; we don’t need to play any damn games here.


She could tell Sora was pretty surprised, since that made them go four steps for every one they took; it didn’t take them long to get to the train station, just as it wore off.


“What was that?” Sora asked.


Ulmia smiled. “Chocobo Mazurka; I’ve been using that a lot lately.”


“Gowsh!”, Goofy said. “I can see how that’d be useful to get away from something. Or someone.”


Prishe nodded. “Hopefully that train’ll get here tho before that guy wakes up. That’ll buy us some time at least; crap. What a damn mean idiot...”


A minute later, and the train got there, they boarded, and headed to the main district, talking all the way. Prishe did mention why she’d kicked Braig where she did, that prompted a round of laughter; it was kinda silly that he’d been shot..there..after all. Sora said he hoped Braig had learned his lesson this time, Prishe wasn’t so sure.


When they were almost to the house, Prishe warned;


“There’s prolly a little girl in the yard. That’s Relm. Just so ya know, you DON’T want her ta paint or draw yer portrait unless it’s on paper.”


“Wak! Why’s that?” Donald asked.


“Because she has a special brush that lets her do it in the air..and that duplicate can and will kick your ass. I should know, she did it ta me when I first showed up. So if she asks, the answer is no.”


They walked up to the house and Prishe opened the gate. Relm looked up.


“Who are you guys?”


Sora smiled at Relm gently. “I’m Sora; me and Donald and Goofy here are helping Prishe out. You okay?”


Realm nodded. “And you are?” She nodded at Ulmia.


Ulmia introduced herself; it seemed Relm didn’t think these guys were too dangerous, for she didn’t draw that brush this time. She did follow them into the house, however.


Luckily Quistie wasn’t tutoring at the moment; she was pleased to meet Sora and the gang. Unfortunately, Relm seemed to think she was being ignored (not to mention, there’d been a dustup that morning because Prishe had caught Relm playing with Prishe’s fire-starter) so she puffed out her cheeks, glared at Prishe and said in a sing-song:


“Fuddy-duddy! Old lady that looks too young!”


Prishe glared back and growled. “Ya shouldn’t be blabbin’ people’s damn secrets! Get over here...”


Relm stuck out her tongue and ran; Prishe gave chase, while Sora stayed behind. He was pretty confused. Ulmia noticed, and asked, “Sora, what’s wrong?”


“Um..what was that about “old lady that looks too young”?!”


Ulmia sighed. “I think she was trying to keep that a secret but, since someone told, I think it’s safe to explain...To be brutally honest, Prishe is a lot older than she seems to be. If I’m not mistaken, she’s old enough to be your grandmother...”


The trio’s eyes widened, and Goofy asked, “How can that be? She’s still a kid..”


“Well, I know the story; tho if you want the details, you’ll have to ask her. I hope you understand. There was a horrible accident that had to do with the church in Tavnazia; short version is that accident stopped her from aging and made her pretty much immortal for a while. It was only reversed three months ago...”


“Wak!” Donald said. “Would be great if anyone could have that happen..”


Ulmia shook her head. “Better not wish that. I understand it was quite painful and a lot of people, including my family, thought she was a demon-child or something like that; she was shunned and called names for a long time. She’s been though the fire, I think when we became friends was a bright spot for her.” Ulmia sighed again, then went on, “I never understood all that. It’s not her fault! She’s special as it is...”


Quistie shook her head, then chimed in. “Just so you know, I think Relm blabbed because Prishe caught Relm playing with her things...Relm had found Prishe’s fire-starter and was playing with it.”


Ulmia rolled her eyes. “Oh no..Any kid playing with a fire-starter back home would get their hide tanned. That’s for lighting fires and candles only...”


“As Prishe explained. I told her that if Relm did it again, she could spank her. Hand on butt only though.”


Sora was pretty quiet, thinking this over.


Accident? Yeah, not her fault. But having that problem..wait. If someone was immortal..wouldn’t you keep seeing your friends die, since they probably wouldn’t be? That idea made Sora shiver; immortality didn’t seem so appealing when you looked at it that way.


Just then, Prishe got back. “Did you catch that girl?” Ulmia asked.


Prishe shook her head. “Nope. Damn it..”


Sora reached out and patted her arm. “That was mean. People shouldn’t be blabbing like that..” I know, I tried to get a bit more out of Mickey that one time, but I know I shouldn’t of now. I let my heart get ahead of my head, there. And I won’t let that happen again.


Prishe looked a little surprised, but then said, “Yah, they shouldn’t.”


Quistie then declared, “She’ll get a good spanking if I catch her, don’t worry. Secrets should remain secrets, for crying out loud!”


Hopefully that’s the worst that happens., Prishe thought. Now the only one that’s missin’ is hoo..Shantotto. I hope she isn’t causing trouble..
 
Last edited:

KingdomKey

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  • Retired Staff
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We finally get to meet Ulmia! I really like her a lot, cause she seems sweet on Prishe. Sora seems to take Prishe secret rather well. I'm glad it made him reflect on things that he's done in the past with Mickey. Although, I wanna say he gets a pass because, he was traveling the worlds in search of Riku after all. Anyways, I like how Ulmia was able to help out against Braig and hold her own some. Prishe hitting Braig in the ass was really funny. I almost feel a bit bad for him. In the meantime, I hope Prishe is able to find Shantotto soon. Overall, I greatly enjoyed this chapter. And Relm sure is a troublemaker for a little girl. xD
 

maryadavies

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  • Keyblade Champion
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  • Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy
  • 15th Anniversary
Finally! Sorry about that. RL interviened, and also..Shantotto's a pain and a half to write because of her rhyming verbal tic. Bleeh!

Oh and for a introduction to her: Here's her WoFF summon. I think you can see why I think that voice actor fits her after this, tho I have a very mild nitpick; Wrong laugh, sweetie, but I think "Oh ho ho ho ho ho!" might be hard for a voice actor to pull off and still have it sound right. As I said, minor nitpick.
[video=youtube;L9t4PmZ3elk]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9t4PmZ3elk[/video]

Also if you played WoFF, some tidbits; Shantotto actually NEVER casts a curse on you in FFXI. She's more of a experimenter. She invents at least 2 spells you use in the game. Oh she does cast a curse on someone alright. But it's someone she thought was a peeping tom (Nope. Reporter snooping around) and the Player has to help her undo it since she overdid it (aka. was a death curse when she says she meant to do a get them sick curse). I do assume she'd be disgusted with Xenohort, since yes, she wanted to dissect someone but I've never seen her experiment on anyone but herself.

Also Manafont is a black mage's special ability, otherwise known in FFXI as a "Two Hour" since up until a couple years ago, it took two hours to cool down so you could use it again. It basically gives the mage unlimited mana for 30 seconds real time and makes it so you CAN'T interrupt their spells for that time (spells can be interrupted by smacking them). In this case, it means You know Who really pissed her off.

Oh and I forgot to mention this. The reason Prishe mentions "watch out for Ice and Thunder spells with her" is (this is prolly something you wouldn't know unless you played the game) up until they reworked the spell formulas a bit not too long ago, meriting ice and thunder was pretty darned common (yes you can merit specific elements to be stronger. And what I mean by that, was once you hit 75, you could get something called Merit Points instead of experience points, which you could use to strengthen your chara further, break the limits a bit more in other words. They are not obsolete since the cap was broken even more) since they tended to kick some major tail. So it wouldn't be much of a surprise to me if I could see Shantotto's merits, if she had merited those. She's a old skool black mage far as I know, after all.

Oh and you'll see a Black Coaty in the story. Um..this is a copout. I don't know who the full Org is yet (none of us do) so basically that's a org member that has yet to be revealed. So basically it's just a member that we aren't sure about yet.

I think you'll understand after this why I didn't catch she was a snob until later in FFXI's story though.

Oh and I found out from some translations of Side:Sora that Sora actually thought the MoM was going to be a pop quiz at first (hahaha!) Makes me wonder if he was having some trouble in school when he got back; that's feasible since he was gone a year.

Okay. Enough with this. Here we go!

Chapter 4: How Not To Treat a Retired Minster of Magic


Everyone talked and laughed a little while, catching up on the news. Sora accidentally let slip that he’d been having some trouble in school; Quistie then said, “Hey, if you can come to Radiant Garden a while after ….whatever… is over, I’ll be glad to tutor you for free.”


Sora protested a little bit since he was embarrassed. Quistie then insisted: “Sheesh, you saved Radiant Garden; you ought to know by now; sometimes when you do a favor, you’ll get someone who’ll want to pay it back. I know no one keeps score, but I think I owe you one. We’ll worry about the details after; the Heartless are getting quite a bit worse, as you know, right?”


The three nodded, with Sora getting the elbowing this time since he hasn’t said a word about it to Donald and Goofy.


Quistie then continued, “I don’t think that Squall..well, okay Leon...would object either. I didn’t think he’d go change his name like that though, but it sounds like him to beat himself up because he couldn’t protect his friends and his world. Hopefully when I get back he’ll stop that.”


Goofy then asked, “He isn’t..your boyfriend is he?”


Quistie laughed and shook her head. “No, he already found one before I could get serious about chasing him; Riona. I admit I had a crush on him, but I’m over it and just consider him a really good friend. Tho I hope Riona’s okay...I don’t know what happened to her.”


Just then, a fly started buzzing around their heads. Both Sora and Donald tried to swat at it; Prishe shook her head, then said, “ZIPPER! If that’s you, get the hell in front of my face where I can see ya before ya get swatted!”


The fly made a startled buzz, then flew right in front of Prishe, hovering there. It was Zipper, all right. Goofy stared, startled.


“Gowsh! I thought after that dark portal opened in Disney Town a while back, that you were gone for good!”


Sora blinked, then said, “Whaaat?”


Goofy turned to Sora. “Well, it happened the day before the King left. There was this dark portal that swallowed a few of the townsfolk; the town’s down the lane from the castle. The king sealed it but it did cause some damage...”


Sora shook his head sadly while Prishe dug in her bag. “Just a sec Zip..I figure ya had a reason for buzzin’ aroun’ our heads, I’ll get ya somethin’ ta write on..”


Just then, Jiminy Cricket poked his head out while Zipper was buzzing. “Um, he’s saying he’s sorry, and he doesn’t blame anyone for swatting at him.” He climbed up on Sora’s shoulder; Sora turned his head to look at him with one eye.


“You can understand him?”


Jiminy nodded. “Well uh..I can understand most bugs, but most of ‘em don’t have much to say. This one does though.”


Prishe quit digging in her bag. “That works for me. Thought I’d have ta find some paper; and don’t worry, he can understan’ us, we just can’t understan’ him. Anyway Zip; what’s all the fuss about?”


Zipper did a little dance with a lot of buzzing and some squeaks. Jiminy then said, “He thinks he found Shantotto..”


Prishe winced inwardly; she knew Shantotto, and knew what kind of trouble she could cause. “She wasn’t really pissed off, was she?”


Zipper shook his head.


“A pissed off Shantotto is not somethin’ that I’d like ta deal with, so that helps..”


Sora looked over at Prishe curiously. “Um, you’ve been saying she’s got a bad temper, but what’s up with Shantotto?”


Prishe shook her head, but she wasn’t mad. They’ve never met her before, and hell, they haven’t heard half the crap I’ve heard.. “Well, ta be honest, she don’t have a lotta friends back home; there’s a damn good reason for that. To be mild about it, she’s been called a pain in the ass...tho from what I hear, she’s eccentric, has that rotten temper I warned ya about, quite a bit selfish, and is also really stuck up too. I’ve only really crossed paths with her once, and she saved my ass from a..bit of a mess (Prishe didn’t want to go into that at the moment), so she ain’t all bad...”


Prishe then caught a thought off Sora, who she could tell was a little annoyed; I don’t think I’m going to like this.. She ignored it (she usually did when that happened), and went on; “I could go though the rumors I’ve heard if you wanna hear’em..”


Donald nodded. “Wakwak, I think we’d better..”


“Okay. Mind, this is pretty much just the worst I’ve heard. Anyway I heard when she went ta another continent called Aht Urhgan for a while, she kept casting spells on her companion when he annoyed her at all. Not funny. I also heard she tried ta snuck inta a place she shouldn’t of back in Windhurst; she tends ta be curious as all hell about anything magical.”


Sora shook his head. “That doesn’t sound very nice...”


“Sorry, that’s not the worst of it. There’s a sorta odd kinda summon spell called Trust Magic back home; it was just created not too long ago. It’s supposed ta work by creating some kinda copy of one person from the bonds of friendship and trust two people have that the other can call at will. Well, Shantotto heard about it, she got upset because no one had asked her; she got an adventurer friend of mine ta come in and managed ta create a Trust spell of Shantotto via scaring my poor friend half out of her skin...”


That really got a reaction out of Sora; she sensed a flare of anger/annoyance, and the thought: Argh, I really don’t like that..I guess that’s not how it’s supposed to work!


Prishe ignored that, yet again, then said; “The worst thing I’ve heard was during somethin’ I was hip-deep in a month ago. There was trouble brewin’..I know, there’s always trouble somewhere...the world could of fallen ta darkness, you guys can prolly guess the drill..but there was this girl who warned us of the danger. Her name was Iroha; she had come from the future..the only problem is, she had the power of the Phoenix, which kept causing her ta be reborn, rather painfully and in fire. Had ta send my adventurer friend ta go talk ta some folks in Windhurst, including Shantotto; turned out we were right ta not send Iroha too; Shantotto would of wanted ta cut her ta pieces ta find out why she kept getting reborn like that..and my adventurer friend confirmed Shantotto wanted ta do that awful thing..”


That really got Sora mad; she could sense it, and he was tapping one foot now. That also made Donald and Goofy a little mad, as well..they didn’t like the idea of a person getting dissected.


Ulmia then said, “Do you mind if I butt in?” Prishe shook her head. Ulmia nodded, then went; “I don’t think you have to worry about anything like that. If anything, she’ll probably try to take that interesting disappearing blade of yours...Just the way she is. Anything magical, and she’ll be curious, and want to study it.”


Prishe noticed Sora smiled just a little; he was still annoyed enough that she heard: Ah, that isn’t the first time, I can handle that… She ignored it again, and said, “’Tanyway, you ought ta be aware of how ta treat her; ya do NOT want an Ice spell or a very nasty Thunder spell cast on yer asses. And if ya get on her nerves even a little, she’ll do it too; she doesn’t tend ta show she’s mad until she’s nuking whomever’s ass.” She shook her head, then went on, “Rule one; don’t yell at her no matter how much she ticks ya off.”
Goofy scratched his head then said, “Why’s that?”
Prishe winked, then said, “Tell me this, how does a fight get started, most times?”
The three exchanged a glance, then Sora went, “Oh...”
Prishe nodded, guessing what’d been going on. “Exactly. Rule two; show some respect and mind yer manners. She may be retired, but the Minister of Magic in Windhurst is high up in the government there, so watch that. Rule three; Try not ta tick her off; better ta agree with her quick and get outta there; not to mention if she ticks you off, try ta hold your tempers; I swear, losin’ yer temper is catchin’. Oh and…” She turned to Zipper and then asked, “Zip, d’ya know where Celes is?” Zipper nodded. “Good. Celes has a trick that can stop Shantotto from castin’ spells; only problem is it’ll mess with us too.”
Donald shook his head, “Wak!! What can she do?!”
“It’s her Runic Blade. Basically, it attracts all spells used in the area ta her blade and absorbs it as mana for her..only trouble it hits everyone in the general area, so make sure you got enough medicine, since we can’t use Cure magic..Hopefully she won’t have ta use it though, but if she does, only thing ya gotta worry about if it comes ta a fight is Shantotto’s really damn nasty with her staff; she’s the head of a staff-wielding team back home, so she proly knows a few tricks ya don’t, Donald.”


They all nodded, then Prishe turned to Zipper again.


“I’ll write ya a note when we get there; buzzin’ around folks’s heads doesn’t work that good when you’re tryin’ ta get someone’s attention, and we don’t have time ta waste. Better ta dump a note on Celes’s head instead.”


Zipper nodded. Prishe removed a hair-tie from her bag and handed it to Zipper. “That’ll make it easier for us ta see ya; don’t drop it. I don’t wanna lose it..”


Zip nodded, then Prishe called out; “We’ll be right back. I’ll get Celes, don’t worry..hopefully Shantotto’s in a good mood tho..” Since she sensed Sora trusted her and wanted to help, she knew he’d have her back. She continued, “Ulmia, you’d better stay here for now. That idiot grabbed ya once, I don’t want him grabbin’ ya again...and I betcha he has friends...”


Ulmia nodded. “I understand; you come back safe, okay?” She gave Prishe a quick hug. Prishe hugged back. I really don’t want ta lose Ulmia, she thought. She’s the best friend I got…


They went outside, Zipper leading the way. It didn’t take them long to find where..There was Shantotto, all right, with the ebony wood staff with a ball on the end that had every color of the rainbow swirling in it. But something was funny…and there was another of those black cloaked people walking with her.


“Looks like she’s acting like a zombie from here..” Sora whispered.


“Not like her at all..we’ll have ta find out what’s up, I guess.” Prishe whispered back. She dug in her bag and got the notepad and pencil out that Quistie had slipped her that morning. She wrote a note:

Celes,
This ain’t a joke. Found Shantotto; gonna need your help. Follow Zipper; he knows the way.
~~Prishe


She folded up the paper and handed it to Zipper, who made sure not to drop the hair tie for now. He nodded, took the paper, and flew off.


Sora started to move like he wanted to run out there (Prishe could tell he just wanted to help); Prishe shook her head. “Wait for Celes unless you want a fireball on yer ass; I don’t know what’s goin’ on here, better safe than sorry..” I know what Ulmia would say; “When did you get cautious like that? You’d normally be the reckless one!” Well, there’s reckless and there’s stupid-reckless. I know what Shantotto can do and I ain’t playin’ games with her around.


They didn’t have to wait long. Three or four minutes later, Celes ran up, following Zipper. Zipper dropped the hair-tie into Prishe’s hand.


“That’s Shantotto?” Celes said as she looked the way the gang was looking. They nodded. “Okay, I can understand from what you told me earlier, Prishe. Just so you know, if I have to use Runic, it’ll keep up until I either give up or I get hit, so be ready for that.”


Everyone nodded, and they double checked their meds. Prishe heard this thought off Sora; Just want this nonsense over with..this isn’t going to be fun.. She ignored it but thought; I don’t think this is going to be fun either. She motioned to the others and they carefully stepped up.


Prishe cleared her throat when they got close; she knew since Shantotto knew her, she was probably the best contact person. “Um...Doc?”


The black cloaked figure laughed, and they saw Braig walk up. “She won’t answer you...Get them!”


Celes immediately raised her blade; it glimmered along its edge. She just stood there after that; Shantotto tried to cast a spell but it fizzled, and was sucked into Celes’s blade. She then started trying to wack people with that staff, but naturally since everyone already knew, they dodged..and they all did their best to keep Shantotto away from Celes. They all used potions occasionally..there was always that moment where you couldn’t dodge quite fast enough. However, Shantotto’s movements were quite a bit stiff, so it wasn’t hard to get out of the way, which was odd.


Just then Prishe noticed another thing that was off. Shantotto was wearing a weird crown; she normally didn’t wear any crowns. She turned to Sora quickly. “Hey Sora..I don’t remember Shantotto wearing any crown..”


He dodged, then smacked, then said; “You mean that’s not hers?”


Prishe nodded. “Yep. I’m going ta try ta get it off of her. Ya smack it good once I throw it in the air, k? And be ready ta duck; if it’s controllin’ her she’s prolly going ta be really pissed..”


Prishe then jumped over her, grabbing it. Shantotto fell down onto her bottom; Prishe threw the thing into the air; Sora smashed it with his keyblade. It fell to the ground. Celes lowered her blade, since hopefully they could talk Shantotto out of fighting now.


The first guy in the black coat (That Prishe didn’t know) yelled: “Drat! That was the only one we had!”

Shantotto stood up and shook her head. She turned to Braig and his friend. “You and your ideas of mind blanking! You deserve a major spanking!”She raised her arms in the air; a black portal formed between them which swirled open, then disappeared. Prishe’s eyes went wide, she knew what that meant. She yelled, “MANAFONT! GET DOWN!” She ducked behind some barrels; the gang joined her.


Prishe peeped out to see two glowing circles around those guys’s feet. Oh boy, she cast the Bind spell on those two; I guess we’re going ta see her favorite trick, if Elizara’s right.. Shantotto then cast Flare and Burst; Prishe noticed both Sora’s and Donald’s eyes widened at the second one, for it was one nasty spell. While that was going on, Shantotto laughed: “Oh ho ho ho ho ho! Oh ho ho ho ho ho!” The victims managed to get out of the Bind after the second spell and ran, Braig muttering, “Should of realized that lady was too dangerous...”


Prishe then whispered, “Now’s our chance..be careful guys.” and carefully climbed out from behind the barrels. She then carefully said, “Hey, Doc..”


Shantotto turned around. “Now, what do we have here? People who have nothing to fear?”


Prishe put her hands on her hips, then calmly said, “Why were you playing with that spell back in Windhurst? It’s gotten us in quite a fix, here..”


“Thought I’d take a little furlong, but seems that you managed to come along. And who pray tell, are these people as well?”


Prishe introduced the gang; Shantotto cocked her head. “A interesting supposition, and I guess you people have some ambition?”


Sora carefully explained what was going on and who the black cloaked people were (Organization 13), and that they were bad news.
Shantotto countered at that, “I should say so. I got into quite the pickle with them, you know. Was minding my own business on the track, and then they stuffed me in a smelly sack. Next thing I remember true, I was sitting on the ground in front of you. Those total losers need some lessons in manners. But I do have my standards. For if I ever be so bold, revenge is a dish best served cold.”


No wonder she nuked those guys, Prishe thought. She noticed Sora got it too; he knew not to tick Shantotto off.


Shantotto cocked her head. “Tell me child; what is that blade you wield?” she asked Sora,


Sora quietly said, “It’s a keyblade.”


“Would you mind if I had a look?”


Sora shook his head, called it, and laid it on a box, taking his hand away. Shantotto walked up to it, walked around it, then tried to pick it up. It disappeared and reappeared in Sora’s hand.


Shantotto was surprised; it came out that keyblades were picky about their owners, so no wonder Sora wasn’t worried. It didn’t take them long after that to convince Shantotto to come with them to the house; she really wanted revenge on the Org, but she wasn’t stupid either.


This could’ve been so much worse, Prishe thought. Shantotto’s not someone you want to fool with..
 
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KingdomKey

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I finally get to meet the infamous Shantotto! I like her way of thinking about wanting revenge on the Org for putting her in a sack. It's good that Sora, Donald, and Goofy were warned about what she was like beforehand. The binding spell she did seemed awfully powerful. Too bad Braig and his companion in crime got away. I also got a small laugh out of Jiminy for being able to talk to Zipper. It's not everyday you hear somebody can understand a fly. Overall, I'm glad Prishe is reunited with her friends from back home. I'm curious to see what they'll do next. If they have a way back home, or if they'll stick around to help Sora out against Organization thirteen? It was a great chapter and well worth the wait. <3
 

maryadavies

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Gomenasi about the wait! This is becoming a habit, but this time it's game distractions. FFXV, 2.8, you get the idea. TOO many good games all at once! I'll have it done soon, don't worry guys.

Speaking of KH 2.8, I'm going to make a early change since /embarrassed I mis-guessed what world would be first. It's because there's going to be a flashback in the next chapter about Sora in Olympus ^^. THIS IS THE ONLY TIME I'M GOING TO BOTHER CHANGING STUFF TO FIT new info. Finally managed to fix it with Mite's help (Thanks!) but anyway if you don't care to read back, the changed bits are, Sora's nervous about Prishe at first b/c Prishe seems to be a kid and instead of a long time since that cake, it's going to be a long time since breakfast (I'll explain why when I put up the chapter; hint hint, it's something about how they used to eat in ancient Greece!)

Oh and in that flashback, expect a bit with gyros, lol. I can't avoid that; my middle brother actually tried to make homemade gyros when he got back from his mission in Greece (you know I'm Mormon by now, right? We're fourth gen Mormons) when he wasn't feeling too blue (Poor boy has a anxiety/depression problem); man. I really need to find a good gyro shop in Atlanta sometime..But yeah, it's something I remember. ^^
 
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maryadavies

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Sorry again guys. Things got nuts again. I should be able to put up the next chapter soon I hope.

BTW, didn't say this..again..just to say it. I'm currently HTML'ing the fic since in a interlude after the current chapter I'm working on, I'm planning on erm, borrowing Calcula from the LevelUP! webcomic for a cameo. We actually played on the same server, but since the GUY (yes Calclula was actually played by a guy!; guy based the comic on some charas in FFXI he knew) wants to see it, I'm doing that. I'll post that up when I put up the next chapter if people are just plain INTIMIDATED by all the intro texts, since yes I know it's long and erm, kinda O_O, and can make folks go a little cross-eyed. ^^ (Just so you know, it's with permission, I never knew Calcula very well, but common courtesy is to ask if you can use that imo if you don't know that the person'd say yes right away.) But yar, this is one time where I feel a little go over and suggestions is a good idea! I caught him in FFXIV; also btw, both Calcula and Mycheal(Mych is a friend of mine, and also played FFXI) are in Florida, so pray for them if you're so inclined that they come out of the hurricane safe!

Anyway hopefully won't be much longer.
 

maryadavies

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So okay. Man, this took way longer than I wanted. But I wanted to get this chapter out at least before the big news hoo-doo; hopefully I can finish the story before KH3 actually comes out! I think it'll last three more chapters, and then that's it.

Anyway, a few things before we get to the story. I do think in a way Sora's a dandelion. WAIT! Don't run away from me. I don't mean a member OF the Dandelions; I mean he's like one. ..Ever tried to pull one out of the garden or yard? You kind of have to dig those suckers out of there. If you miss any of the taproot, it'll grow back. What's happened to Sora, THREE times now? Yep.

As for the spells Shantotto uses; Actually the -ja series were designed in FFXI to be groupcast (cast in tandem by more than one black mage) and are not as strong as they sound without having more than one black mage (If you want a AOE spell that is pretty strong, stick to the -ga 2 series if you ever play FFXI), but I wanted to use them here b/c most of you guys that only played KH are really going to wince at that. This was on purpose and to give you guys a idea on how teed off Shantotto is at the moment. (Not to mention how strong she is. Those are rather disappointing high level BLM spells in FFXI.)

I'd also like to thank Milch from the Alla forums; I'd forgotten what Chi Blast on a Elvaan female looks like! (Not suprising since I only saw it once; Linmayu used it in front of me once, never saw her do it again) I asked on the Monk forums over there; he answered and helped me out. Thank you very much! I'd rather have any abilities be exactly as they are in the game. Just so you know, Prishe uses Boost first in this, then Chi Blast..

Also that candy Sora tosses is actually (I'm expecting some groaning here) Saltwater Taffy. (I can hear it now about the salt part) If you didn't know, that's a USA-born candy; I first had it in Florida when we went to Disney World when I was a little kid. It's usually found in coastal regions, tho you can order it online if you look. I've seen it on Amazon. I figured considering where Sora came from, it's realistic; might even be found on Destiny Islands if our fine director has heard of it/eaten it. Oh and before you ask, unlike sea-salt ice cream, it isn't salty at all!

Besides, I figure with nasty medicine, Sora WOULD get it. I don't know any kid who's escaped the pink stuff (Amoxcillin) growing up; not to mention, I doubt that potions and ethers taste very good. ^^

Also, willowbark tea is not in FFXI. It's a stretch, but if you didn't know, all cooking recipes are based on RL in FFXI. I should know since I do some home cooking in RL as well as I was a top level culinarian in FFXI. And the headache part isn't really canon, but I wanted Prishe to have a bit of a weakness with her mental powers. (Neither is her sensing hearts, btw.) Considering I've read Anne McCaffrey's Talent series and also Mercedes Lackey's Herald books, a common one to such things is a headache. Since there is the ingredients..kind of..in FFXI (Willow logs = willow bark too) I figured a headache works. I used the teapot since I googled it and found out the dose is usually three cups of the stuff.(Originally, most teas in FFXI came in a teapot; they changed that later to a cup. Don't ask me why.) And if you didn't know, willowbark tea is the predecessor of aspirin; people used it before there was aspirin, and that fits in FFXI like a glove. Besides, I'd rather have a problem that isn't in the normal status ailments you get from FF games/KH with this.

Also, the title of this chapter is actually from a song I heard ONCE at a Youth Conference. "Light a single candle, or sit and curse the dark.."..I don't remember more than that. I wish I could find it again; they had tapes of it there, but I didn't have the money for one. But anyway I think it fits, even if I don't remember the rest of the song.

Enough beating around the stupid bush, I'm rattling on too long. Here we go!




Chapter 5: Light a Single Candle In The Darkness



It didn’t take them long to get back to the house and leave Shantotto there; Prishe hoped that she wouldn’t cause trouble to anyone but the Org. (Shantotto did hold grudges, Prishe knew, and the Org had majorly insulted Shantotto with the way she’d been treated)


Just as Shantotto settled down, Zipper (who had come back with them) started bobbing around and squeaking again.


Jimney poked his head out, then translated, “He’s thinkin’ he ought’a go check on Monterey and Gadget..it’s getting late too..”


Goofy’s eyes widened. “They survived too?! Gowsh..I know Chip and Dale have been missin’ ‘em..”


Prishe nodded at Zipper. “It’s about suppertime, ain’t it?” Zipper nodded. “I’ll ask Rosa about the basket an’ go get their dinner..”


Sora then asked, “Mind if I come along?”


Prishe said, “Nah, ‘sokay.”


It didn’t take long for Prishe to get the basket; Sora said he’d get his dinner elsewhere with his friends. (Prishe guessed he didn’t want to impose here.) Since Donald and Goofy were curious, Rosa explained that it was a little difficult for Monterey and Gadget to go get their own since not many people really liked mice. “We don’t mind them, but other people do around here, sadly.” she said. She also told Sora he could come back after if he wanted a place to sleep, since it wasn’t likely there would be trouble. “Should be quiet, and it should be pretty safe. I don’t think anyone will come here to bother us tonight.”


There were no problems getting to the warehouse; this time Gadget poked her head up from what she was working on.


“Hey there Prishe! Who’s your friends ‘ere?”


Prishe introduced the gang, then got out the dinner. Monterey dug into the main dish a bit, then said, “’Ey now, are Chip and Dale okay? Was gettin’ kinda worried...”


Donald then reassured Monterey, “They’re okay; they’re workin’ on something in the castle right now, wak.”


“Crikey! That’s good to know..”


Goofy took one look at what was being built, and asked: “Is that a gummi ship?”


“Well, yeah.” Gadget said. “Since we’re worlds away from home, and since Celes and her friends found us and enough gummi blocks to do it, we’re workin’ on it. Hopefully that can get us home, too...”
Sora thought a second, then asked, “Hang on...if I remember right, Disney Castle’s a ways away from Radiant Garden; don’t think you’ll be able to get home with them..”


Gadget looked embarrassed. “I didn’t think about that...”


“Well, maybe there’s a way. If I know when you’re done..I can come here and get you guys. We’ll be going there ‘ventually, right guys?”


Donald and Goofy nodded.


Monterey then said, “We’ll try not ta make trouble for you guys; besides, Gadget-luv, couldn’t ya do a few things to their ship? Might as well be useful..”


Gadget winked. “Sure can if you guys need it.”


They talked a bit more while Monterey and Gadget ate, then they went on their way. Just as they rounded a corner, the kitten from yesterday jumped up on a trash can. :Hey there, what’s going on?:, he thought/said. Prishe discreetly brought one finger to her lips. :Oh, these guys don’t know? Well, I know what to do in case they saw that..: The kitten walked up and rubbed up against one of Sora’s legs. Sora looked down; the kitten went, “Mew?”


“Awww!” Sora said. “Where did you come from?”


Goofy looked down. “Awww, a kitten..”


Sora knelt down, then petted the kitten and gave it a scritch behind the ears. The kitten then headbutted Sora’s hand.“Shame it can’t come with us; my mom would be mad if I took it home..and I don’t think you could either..”


Donald then said, “I know, wak. She won’t let you have a cat...and besides, that’d be major meddling, wak. You know the rules..”


Sora nodded, then gave the kitten another scritch. The kitten then jumped back behind the trash can, with a :We’ll talk later, Prishe. I’d rather not give your secret away..:


Once they got close to the house, Sora and crew went off a little while; prolly to look for their dinner, Prishe thought.


They worked on making dinner and cleaning up after; Sora and his friends showed up a bit after they were done. People chatted some more; Sora talked at length with Cecil (seems Sora had been having some problems with darkness). Then they all went to bed (Sora and his friends had the living room). It was quiet for a good hour after that, but then that bell started ringing like crazy again..


Ulmia jumped up and yelled; Prishe calmed her down and told her, “Damnit. We got a snooper that needs chasin’ out. I hope Celes’s spell isn’t seein’ a damn cat or somethin’...”


It didn’t take long for them to throw some clothes on and run out. It’d take longer for Shantotto (who Prishe guessed would be especially grumpy, being woken up like that) but hopefully they wouldn’t need her.


Sora and his friends had run out too; it was Braig and a few of his friends who were the intruders, it seemed. (The others all had black cloaks with hoods on.)


Prishe glared, then said: “You again. Can’t people get any damn sleep around here?”


Sora looked like he was going to say something, and then three or four arrows stuck themselves in the ground at the black cloaked group’s feet. “You got five minutes to get the heck out of here, or the next ones will be somewhere painful!”, she heard Rosa snarl.


Prishe quickly motioned toward Rosa’s window and said softly, “Uh..don’t stand under that..she might miss..”


Sora, Donald, Goofy, and Ulmia nodded, and they all backed away from the window. Sora then yelled, “What’s your problem?”


Braig then went into a tirade, something about Sora failing some trial, along with some other things, including about saving someone and taunting them that he couldn’t do it. Whatever it was, Prishe could tell it really made Sora upset, which only infuriated her. She wasn’t sure why she wanted to protect Sora..after all, they’d only just met that afternoon and it was obvious he could defend himself..but this kinda stuff made her want to punch something.


Growling a bit, she snarled; “Ya frickin’ get the hell out of here, ya Goddess-forsaken idiots! You’ve caused enough damn trouble!” She brought her arms down to her sides while she said that; red sparks danced over her while some rocks lifted themselves up, jiggled a little bit, then fell down again. She then quickly brought her arms down again with her hands out; a glowing white sphere appeared in her hands, and then flung itself at the dark cloaked folks. It knocked over one of the guys with his hood up. She then yelled, “I’ll take ya all on!”


Just then, Shantotto poked her head out a window. “You total losers ought to know this and weep. Some people are trying to sleep!” She then cast what Prishe recognized as Fireja, Thundaja then Blizzaja; there was a lot of yelling. Serves ‘em right for that, Prishe thought. They turned, made dark portals and ran, tho Rosa managed to shoot Braig in the back of a leg.


Prishe heard Shantotto yell: “If those guys weren’t caught up in dread, I would of dropped some rocks on their heads!” The window slammed shut. I hope those buttheads get comin’ around a third time would be a damned bad idea. Shantotto don’t mess around when she’s pissed, and she’s REALLY damned pissed now.


They all went back in the house, and Prishe went back to the room where her and Ulmia were sharing (they’d found another cot). Just as Prishe reached down to take off her boots, she started hearing Sora’s thoughts, and he sounded really miserable. :I can’t..is there any other way? It just seems impossible..I don’t know if I’ll ever catch up to Riku..:


Ulmia saw Prishe’s spine stiffen. “What’s the matter?”


Prishe pointed down the stairs. “Sora. Man, he’s damned loud..”


Ulmia rolled her eyes. Prishe sensed Ulmia knew what she meant; they’d been friends for many years by now, after all. “Ugh. You’re prolly not going to be able to sleep while he’s that upset, right?”


Prishe shook her head. “Not while he’s beating himself up, I’m not. Ya know how I feel about that..”


Ulmia nodded. “Yeah, I do. Remember when we first met?”


Prishe nodded back. “Hell yeah..ya got upset over freezin’ up over the audition for the Children’s Choir, didn’t ya? And I kinda was an answer to a prayer..” She smiled, and remembered;


It had been a hot day in Tavnazia, really hot. Then Prishe heard it; someone’s heart was full of angst, and whoever it was, was really, really depressed too? Yeah, that was it. It didn’t take long for Prishe to evade her keepers and sneak out of the cathedral, following all the mental noise.


It didn’t take long for Prishe to find the source. A little auburn-haired Elvaan girl was standing by the sea, crying and praying, with the kerchief on her head flapping in the breeze. She looked to be about ten or eleven..


Prishe really hated hearing people beat themselves up like that girl was doing inside, so she decided that even tho people got creeped out about her reading minds, that had to stop. Now.


She stepped up to the girl. “What’s the matter with you? What are you so worked up about? You’re so full of angst, I could hear your thoughts from malms away!”


The girl’s mouth dropped wide open with surprise, and let out a funny squeak. But Prishe wasn’t done. “You don’t have to say a thing. Let’s see now...” She reached out to brush the girl’s mind; it wasn’t long before she found out what was wrong..not to mention she found out the girl’s name was Ulmia..


Prishe brought one hand to her chin and focused, then said, “Huh? You didn’t make it into the choir? You were too nervous to sing in front of everyone? Unbelievable.”


Prishe then put one hand on her hip, and gestured with the other one. “I guess I can understand why you’d want to join the cathedral choir. You get to wear those pretty clothes, and every meal is a feast!”


She brought the other arm down. “But it’s not the end of the world, you know!” The girl squeaked again. Prishe marched forward, stopping right by the cliff. “Listen to me. You might be too young to realize, but this world is a damn big place!”


She then put both hands on her hips. “Lemme put it this way.”


Prishe ran right next to the girl, swinging her arms while she was doing so. “The world that stretches way to the right..” She ran to the other side. “And the world that stretches way to the left.. Combined with the world above and the world below...There’s a whole lotta world around you!” Prishe raised her arms while she said the last part.


She lowered them again, then said, “Do you get it? This marquisate you live in is just one part of the Tavnazian Archipelago, which is just one part of the world of Vana’diel...”


She walked back to the girl. “The world of Ulmia is just a tiny corner of that! But I guess your dream of singing in the choir is over.”


She put her left hand on her hip, gesturing with the other hand, then went on, “And so is your parents’s dream that you enter that world..But the world where you sing can still exist in Vana’diel!” She turned toward the sea, put both hands on her hips, and continued: “Do you see?! C’mon! Let’s hear you sing! Let’s make that world right here!”


Ulmia smiled, then said, “And I remember..after you chewed me out over what I was thinking, I found the courage to sing a little bit, tho I know it wasn’t my best; I was still a little shook up. Then the Cardinal showed up with a couple priests and got you to go with them..Later we met up at the cathedral, we talked a bit, I realized that even with your ability to hear thoughts, you’re still someone worth knowing, and I managed to sing for you. Cardinal Mildaurion heard me singing, then got the leader of the Choir by the ear; he was surprised. That..got me in the choir as the soloist, tho I didn’t sing there for months, while he helped me overcome my stage fright.”


Prishe nodded back, then covered her ears, even tho that didn’t help. “Man, he’s really upset..beating himself up bad...He’s loud enough that I think that he’s got one damn strong heart, there.”


Ulmia looked at her friend curiously. “Why don’t you go tell him off like you did me? Sounds like he needs it. This isn’t like you; I’ve seen you tell people off for less..”


“Part of me wants ta slap him, the other wants ta hold off, I’m afraid I’ll hurt him more...I get the feelin’ he’s been through some hell lately..”


Ulmia put her hands on her hips and shook her head. “Remember what Carbuncle told you?” Prishe nodded; she had told Ulmia what had happened in private after all. Ulmia then continued, “Then, what does your heart say?”


Prishe bowed her head for a second, trying her best to listen, then said; “That..if somethin’ isn’t done it could get even worse...I need ta go talk ta him..oh dammit.” She threw her hands down, defeated.


Ulmia then reassured her; “Sora strikes me as a nice boy, maybe he is open minded enough to not shove you away when he finds out what you can do besides send monsters flying. But just in case, and if it helps; I’ll keep myself awake until you get back so you can cry on my shoulder if you need to, okay?”


Prishe nodded; then Ulmia pulled a book out of her bag. “Handy, those lights on the ceiling.”, she said, and curled up with the book. Prishe herself had been surprised that there were lights you could turn off and on with a switch, instead of looking for a wick somewhere. Celes had understood, however and had gotten them a candle in a holder since looking for the switch wasn’t automatic to either Ulmia or Prishe. It was this candle, which was on a small table by the door, that Prishe lit now, with the firestarter that had caused the dustup that morning. She promised Ulmia she’d kill the light when she got back if she didn’t need a cryfest and a cuddle, and headed down the stairs, carrying the candle.


I know what my heart’s screaming right now; Not again. No more! Can’t let him go down the path I went down! That only ends up dark and ugly; I’m sure that Mildaurion, Elizara and Ulmia saved me from something unthinkable...Hell, though. I hope I can do this without hurting him more..he’s prolly had enough..But the usual creep out or not, I gotta do something...Or I won’t be able ta look at myself in the damn mirror in the morning…


She didn’t completely block out the mental noise; from experience, she knew that what was being blasted would help her know what to tell him. From what she could tell, it had to do with a test and a mess that had happened recently, and Sora felt a little worthless at the moment, which Prishe could relate to.


It didn’t take her long to get to where Sora was; Donald and Goofy were fast asleep. Waking them up would be a bad idea, Prishe thought. I’d prolly get my ass kicked; they are kinda protective of their friend, and I can understand why…


She stepped right up, holding the candle. Sora sat up and looked at her; she heard what he wanted to say as loud as a shout: I’m not good company, can’t you leave me alone? Prishe shook her head. “No. No, I ain’t gonna.” she said quietly, and placed the candle on a small table nearby where it wouldn’t get kicked over, and so that it was well away from Sora’s clothes (Prishe guessed he was sleeping in his underwear, which wasn’t a bad thing. She could see the undershirt he was wearing, at least.) which were draped over a nearby chair. (Being careful with candles and oil lamps had been drilled into her head from a young age.) She sensed Sora was a little confused now; that was no surprise. Sorry, Sora. This is about ta get worse.


She put her hands on her hips. “What’s the matter? Why are ya so upset? Geez loize, you’re so fulla angst, I could hear your thoughts all the way from the sandlot!” Prishe knew by now that mentioning malms and yalms and all that would only get a “What huh now?” since the measurements were different here.


That got a reaction though, as Prishe expected it would. Nobody liked the idea that someone could just browse though their heads. Sora winced and covered his face, like he was ducking. Like that’s going ta help., Prishe thought. She could sense he was thinking furiously. Prolly trying ta figure out what ta do, I guess.


She shook her head. “Ya don’t have ta say a thing….Let’s see now.” Focusing (it was a little harder than it was when she was still immortal; heck for a few weeks after she got mortality back she thought she’d lost the ability to read minds), she very gently brushed his mind. It only took a moment to find out what was truly wrong. ...Didn’t pass a test called the Mark of Mastery and got caught and worse? Nearly what could of happened to me, but turned out to be false? That Xenohort...I think I know what ta do now.. And with that test, it sounds almost like he lost a Maat fight. Prishe put her hands on her hips, still making sure she spoke quietly. “Messed up, didn’t pass that test of yours, an’ almost became that Xenohort fellow’s toy? What a damn mess. Yeah, you didn’t want that Mark at first but you tried an’ put your heart inta it...And then Xemnas went and really ruined your day after dinner today by saying that you had ta do something you really don’t want ta do ta save that Roxas guy...Those guys in black cloaks. I wanna feed them a damn knuckle sammwich.” She shook her head while clenching her fists for a moment.


“Ya know tho, since they tricked ya during that test, that they’re prolly really damn good liars, and know how ta twist the truth ta make sorta-lies? I remember a friend of mine back home sayin’ that sometimes what’s the truth depends on one’s damn point of view, so ya gotta watch out for that.” Yeah, good old Elizara. I know what she’d be saying now, dancing around while she was sayin’ it if she were here: “Liarrr, Liarrr, Pants on firrre, quit sticking yourrr tail in the kiitchen-firrre!”; her Mithran accent really shows when she’s taunting someone or mad or somethin’ like that…Even tho it hardly shows any other time...That reminds me, something she said might help too. “But if I were ya, I’d be really careful; I’d trust that Yen Sid fellow over those morons if I were you. But other than that..Dammit, you may of not made Master, but that doesn’t mean you can’t! Just means ya weren’t ready at that damn moment. Just keep workin’ at it; as that friend of mine would say, “If you fall down ten times, get up eleven!”


She motioned toward the window. “I don’t know what that Yen Sid’s plannin’ any more than you do, but there’s worlds out there with who the hell knows how many possibilities. I bet he sent ya out after ya got your power back so ya could find the answer ta this damned riddle. And don’t lose hope, who knows if Yen Sid meant ta give you a second chance with this. If I were him, if it was meant as a second chance, I wouldn’t tell ya, just spring the title on ya later when ya succeed just so Xenohort couldn’t mess up any damn test again. That‘s if he feels yer ready, of course. Just tell those black cloaks to stick it in If..err..a volcano (Prishe realized she’d almost said Ifrit’s Cauldron; she knew Sora didn’t know what THAT was) and keep tryin’, do what Yen Sid told ya. And yeah, just face this mess head on and give it a good knuckle sammwich. Don’t be afraid ta tell Donald and Goofy later too if it gets ta be too damn much; I’d be blind as a bat if I didn’t realize you guys are really close. Don’t know why ya didn’t but by Altana’s shining wings! Didn’t you realize that when ya feel like yer going ta explode because you’re hurtin’ inside too much, ya should ask a friend for help, the closer ta your heart the better?! Even if it’s just askin’ ‘em ta let ya cry on their shoulder for a bit?” Yeah, Ulmia taught me that one, the sweetie. How many times has it been now, that she caught me kickin’ things in the broom closet or in my room back home because someone or something made me howl inside? Ten? Twenty? Two hundred? I lost count, damnit.


Sora peeped out from between his fingers with one eye; Prishe could sense that he was thinking about it, yet he was also pretty darned creeped out. She then caught the thought, :Yikes, she can read minds? What if..?: She then thought a moment, figuring she ought to explain what was going on before he really freaked out, and then said; “Just so you know, usually I don’t wanna read people’s minds without a good reason; it’s kinda like catchin’ someone in their birthday suit and vulnerable as a baby, an’ I usually learn more than I wanna. You’re so upset right now that I heard a lot of stuff without tryin’ ta begin with, damnit. But yeah, I did read your mind a bit a minute ago; yer upset ‘nuf that I figure it’s hard ta talk right now.”


She then heard the thought; :What does that have to do with it?: She sighed. “When people are upset or mad, they may not realize it but they’re hollerin’ inside. That means your thoughts get really loud when that happens; the stronger the heart, the worse it gets. And when someone gets like that, I usually hear what’s on their mind loud and clear.” She sensed Sora was starting to feel guilty and embarrassed about it, and then hissed; “Oh don’t feel bad about it. I don’t blame ya one damn bit. It’s annoyin’ but I think of this kinda thing like someone blew some black pepper in your face and ya started sneezin’; not completely your fault then, is it?”​

Sora shook his head slowly and saw him lower his hands. She sensed him thinking a bit, then came a thought with a little will behind it instead of just feelings; :D’ya mean like sneezing and forgetting to cover your mouth?:

Man, he’s quick. Bit dense, since I had to spell the whole beezwax out before he caught on, but well, it took Ulmia a month to figure out that if you put a little will behind a thought, I can hear it clear as day. And when someone does that, it’s more comfortable for me. Aloud, she said; “Yep, just like that. Shame I don’t know anyone ‘cept Cardinal Mildaurion who knows how ta “cover their mouth”...”​

She then heard the thought: :Who’s that?:

“That’s one of my teachers; I had more than one. She helped me learn to control that, among..other things. Mostly book learnin’.” Yeah, I know. This ain’t home where everyone believes in the Goddess Altana. Rather not shove that down his throat; “book learnin’” I think covers anythin’ I was studyin’.

Sora then nodded, and then she heard him trying to quietly clear his throat. “Shh, it’s okay. I get it; get ahold of yourself tho.” Prishe reached into her bag and pulled out a handkerchief, and pressed it into Sora’s hand. He’s calmin’ down now but yeah..I figure he’ll want ta wipe away the last of them tears. And he’s a big boy, he can do it himself and I don’t wanna try ta do it for him; he proly wouldn’t appreciate it. She could also feel a nasty headache coming on; she figured she’d better take care of it. When my head hurts, I get really damn grumpy; I don’t want ta be biting his head off for no good reason.

She carefully dug in her bag and backed away; she heard Sora quietly clear his throat, then he asked; “You aren’t leaving, are you?”​

Prishe shook her head. “Naw. Give me a minute tho; have ta get some medicine out ta deal with a damn headache..” She sensed Sora guessed the reason, then she said, “I meant it when I said I ain’t blaming ya. Yeah, it was the loud thoughts; yellin’ in my ear, basically. But ya were just real upset and I don’t blame anyone for that. You’ve just been though some major hell as it is, so I ain’t blamin’ ya at all. Didn’t see everythin’ when I read your mind, but I saw enough ta know that. I just gotta synth it, and if I mess up..I don’t think you want your blanket wet..”​

Prishe sensed Sora was curious and just a little confused. “What do you mean?”​

“Lemme get this done before my head really starts hurtin’ and then I’ll explain, ok?”​

Sora nodded. Prishe then got out the materials for what she wanted; a small bag full of shredded willowbark (it was a onze of the stuff), a bottle of distilled water, and a fire crystal. Holding the first two items in one hand, she focused on the fire crystal..while the pain wasn’t so bad that she couldn’t. To Sora, it seemed to be that she was holding a flame between her hands for a moment. The synthesis succeeded and a small patterned china (or it seemed to be) teapot appeared in her hands. It was only big enough to hold about three cups of the stuff; not that Prishe wanted any more than that. Yuk, I hate willowbark tea, but it’s better than the damned headache.

She dug a teacup wrapped in rags out of her bag as she walked back to Sora. She poured herself a cup of the tea and then explained: “That trick with a crystal like that don’t always work right, that’s the problem.” She pulled another fire crystal out of her bag, then continued, “These things can be used ta make things, like that tea, as ya saw. But if the crafter either slips up or the crystal has a flaw in it, the crystal breaks; half the time, one of the materials gets splattered along with it. With me and that tea, it’s almost always the damn water...ya can guess what happens then.”​

Sora winced, so Prishe figured he got it. Prishe then nodded and went on, “That’s why it’s considered good manners ta back up before someone does that; no one wants crap on their shoes or pants if it fails.” Prishe didn’t mention something else she knew; some merchants back home that stocked flour always kept a waxed tarp around since some people had a habit of crystal-synthing right by them because bags of flour were incredibly heavy. Since Sora wasn’t from Vana’diel, she was sure he couldn’t crystal-synth anyway, so there was no need.​

She put the crystal away, then took a sip of her tea, and made a face.​

Sora inclined his head a bit. “Let me guess, yuck?”​

Prishe nodded. “Only recipe I can do right now; I could make some with cinnamon and honey in it too, but I don’t got any of that on me. It’s just..bitter without it, but that’s better than the damn headache. And I don’t dare go ta the kitchen for sugar, I’d prolly make too much damn noise right now.”​

Sora nodded, understanding. Prishe could sense his curiosity building a bit; he asked, “Ulmia said that you’d been in some accident...what happened?”​

Prishe considered this; it really was an innocent question, one that she could sense that had been bothering him since Prishe had gone to chase Relm. This ain’t something I really want ta talk about but I get it. I’m new around here, and it’s obvious you don’t get powers like I got without somethin’ happening. She bowed her head, then carefully said, “I get’cha, and I think it’s better somebody knew. Don’t want everyone ta know tho; it’s not somethin’ I like talkin’ about, so only gonna tell this story once.”​

Sora nodded. Prishe took another gulp of the awful tea, then begain: “It all started years ago, when Tavnazia was a big city on a hill instead of the Safehold, which it is now.” She sensed the question coming, smiled, then explained: “I’ll get ta how that damn mess happened, so hold tight. ‘Tanyway my parents thought I was somethin’ special, and I thought it was a good idea at the time, so they gave me up ta be a nun at the Cathedral of the Goddess Altana there. Well, what I didn’t know is the baptismal container that they had was not what it seemed ta be, dammit; It was a very ancient artifact that shouldn’t of been there. And when it was used for me in the ceremony..well. It didn’t like me and went off like a bomb.”​

“Yikes..”​

Prishe nodded. “Anyway, when I came ta my senses, I found I had some dark crystal embedded in my stomach and my chest; before ya ask, I still got the scars. The nuns around me had also been knocked out, but they woke up pretty much insane, and muttering something about the dark god, Promithia. That really scared folks and for years, I was locked up in a tower, lost track on how long. It also became clear that I’d somehow become immortal; hell, it’s kinda obvious when I didn’t grow even a little. But then Cardinal Mildaurion found out. She also found out ‘bout the fact I could read minds an’ feelings, which was why for a while, I welcomed that room alone..”​

“Wow, that must have been awful..”​

“Yeah it was. Was pretty down by the time Mildaurion found me; wanted ta die, really. I had those powers, with no control; and you’d better believe that made a bad situation really damned worse. Mildauron said it was a miracle that I hadn’t just gone crazy. She helped me learn ta control ‘em, and gave me this for protection..” She tapped her brooch. “Once she figured I had control, I was allowed down from the tower. But it still was hell; a lot of folks gave me the cold shoulder, an’..called me names...” Prishe felt a tear trickle down her left cheek. Damn!, she thought. Since...THAT Business where I first met Elizara..happened, I’ve been able ta cry again, an’ not just cry inside and have ta hide and scream. Hard ta get used ta, damnit…

Just then, Sora reached over and pressed the handkerchief into one of Prishe’s hands. “Why?” he hissed. “You did nothing wrong..”​

Prishe was startled by that reaction; few had shown much sympathy to her situation when they found out. She hadn’t even had a lot of friends until recently, she was first to admit it. If it wasn’t for Mildaurion and Ulmia, I really wouldn’t ‘a known what a friend was..Anyway I’d better try ta explain..

She took a couple deep breaths to calm down a little, wiped her face, then said quietly: “They thought..I was the vessel for Promithia. Which meant..I would destroy the world later, and not by my own will. If ya didn’t guess; Promithia was a bad guy, wanted the whole world ta die and him along with it. “They” were dead wrong ‘a ‘course, but no one knew that fer sure at the time. Mildaurion figured because of what happened, I wasn’t so she stuck by me, and made sure no one who thought that was near me for the most part. She didn’t always succeed tho; I almost always felt worthless, like the dirt on the bottom of yer shoes...” She felt yet another tear creep down her left cheek, then the other one. Damn again! Can’t control it..and I’m rusty on havin’ ta deal with tears. This is the reason why I don’t like talkin’ about this..even after all this time, it still hurts like hell…

Just then, Sora clamped one hand over the hand with the handkerchief. “That’s so stupid...Why didn’t they realize that there’s nothing really wrong with you?” Prishe felt really shocked by that; it almost sounded like something Ulmia would say. But then she heard the thought; :Reading minds is really creepy, but really; she hasn’t hurt anyone, she could of used that to hurt people earlier, but she didn’t.:

What the hell?!, Prishe thought. Most people would be more upset than this about knowing I can read minds. Wait..could it be that because he has such a childlike heart, he’s seeing the good before the bad? Has to be it! She carefully reached out and took a better look at Sora’s heart. There’s something even more unusual about that heart, but I can’t put my finger on what right now. But wow, it’s so warm..No wonder he’s like this. He can’t help it; he wants ta help but can’t see a way ta at the moment..

She drank the last of that cup of tea, put it by the teapot, then put her hand on Sora’s. “Not much ya can do now; it’s long over. Just..those memories hurt..so ya can say I hurt myself. No use runnin’ from the past tho, so I ain’t.”​

Sora met her eyes, then smiled a little. He didn’t say anything, he didn’t have to; Prishe realized in that moment that he’d accepted her as she was, which was incredible. Few had; tho now a days, she had a lot more friends than she once had...Tenzen, Selh’teus and all the rest back home...Looks like I found a new friend. She also sensed that Sora respected her for that.

She sniffled a bit, raised her free hand and wiped one eye, then said, “ Dddamnit Sora, you’re almost too much..” Sora smiled a little wider, gave that hand a squeeze, then let go.​

Prishe then took a shakey breath, poured another cup of that tea, and went on. “After a while, I met Ulmia, who was an 11 year old kid at the time..Won’t go inta details now, it’s late and we’re both tired. But I did end up telling her off for bein’ upset; she’d frozen up at the audition for the Children’s Choir. Managed to cheer her up and later, when she sang for me, she actually got into the Choir after all. Her parents didn’t like that she kept hanging out with me, but Ulmia didn’t care. And then all hell broke loose; there’d been a damn war going on and something happened at the border that literally ripped Tavnazia from the rest of Vana’diel and destroyed the city. Mildaurion was smart tho and led most of the people though the aqueducts into a big tunnel under the city. Once we got there, she sealed it with a rather powerful spell that kept some nasty monsters away from us, and also weakened them. Soon after that she left and for a long time, she didn’t come back.” Prishe shook her head. “I ended up being their leader, even with folks calling me names behind my back. I still felt I wasn’t worth nuffin’ though. People sometimes washed up on our shores; the guards often helped them join the community, tho yeah, we didn’t have much. And yeah, Ulmia grew up, but she stuck by me. Then one day while me and Ulmia were going on a trainin’ and ‘splorin’ trip, a little brown haired mithra and her friends washed up on the shore.”​

“Hm, a what?”​

Oops, I didn’t really explain that, did I?, Prishe thought. “Oops. There are five main races on Vana’diel, if you don’t count the beastmen, and most don’t. Ya got Elvaan like me, humans like you (of course), tarutarus like Shantotto, galka (I think they look a little bear like but they got long, thick tails) and then we got the Mithra. With them, ya only see the girls out adventuring. Dunno why, so don’t ask. They’re pretty much cats who walk on two legs complete with ears and a tail. And they always seem ta talk with a purr, tho that Mithra..as I found out later..mostly had it trained outta her from an early age.”​

“Why did she agree to that?”​

Prishe smiled. “It’s ‘cuz she has a real gift for magic; ya proly know, even if you cast spells silently, ya kinda have ta know how ta speak clearly because casting involves a few words with a lot of imagination and will behind ‘em. If ya don’t, they backfire.” Sora nodded. Prishe continued, “Well, there was a trio of tarutarus called the Chebukki siblings; I was always having to yell at them for slackin’ and doin’ things they shouldn’t...They stole an amulet just like mine from that Mithra, who’s name turned out ta be Elizara..” Prishe then went on into what had happened; how Elizara and her friends had killed a rather nasty Minotaur; what Nag’molada had done, Bahamut...her wandering though the main continent, trying to find a way home...how Elizara and her friends had saved her from an eternal sleep caused by Diablos (which really shocked Sora). Sora also was surprised to find out that Shantotto had managed to save Prishe from the Sin Hunters. (“Didn’t think she had it in her!”, he said. Prishe answered, “Oh, if she’s on your side, she’s tolerable. Make no mistake about it tho; she can be a real pain in the ass, so better ta be careful.”) She went on with the story; how she’d gotten the Star of Tavnazia back, Mildarion revealing herself as Esha'ntarl and her plan to finally destroy Promithia; their journey to Al'Taieu; what Nag’molada did then, and how Promithia had finally been destroyed with Selh’teus’s help, as well as the Goddess. (Prishe finished the second and almost finished the third cup during this time. As always, when the poured the third, the teapot disintegrated into dust after she put it down.)​

“That incident gave me back my mortality, which I’m glad for. And even now, I know Ulmia will die before I do, damnit.” She shook her head. “All I can do is treasure the time I have with her, really, so don’t worry ‘bout it.”​

Just then a familiar head poked itself up from a matchbox over Sora’s head. “Wow, that’s quite a story..and you’d better be careful, little lady. If the Org finds out about this, you’re finished.” Jiminy then jumped down onto Sora’s head.​

Damn, didn’t realize he was there. Prishe’s eyes widened. “Are they still tryin’ ta find the last member?!”​

Sora nodded. “I betcha they’d do more than bother you if they knew what you can do..”​

“Gah! Well, I’ll be no one’s damn toy, thanks. As long as not many ‘round here know I can read minds’n stuff, I think I’m safe.” Both Jiminy and Sora nodded; she then said, “Don’t worry, serious readin’ minds takes quite a bit of effort. If it helps, I usually listen in on people’s feelin’s ta make sure I ain’t steppin’ on any toes. I don’t wanna hurt anyone that doesn’t deserve it unless I got no choice. Besides, I’d rather get ta know folks the hard way; what’s the use of that damn ability when I can’t turn it around and let people know as much about me as the other way ‘round?”​

Sora smiled. “That’s a relief, at least.” He yawned; Prishe finished the tea, yawned herself, then stood up. “I’d better get back ta bed; damn it’s late.” She wrapped the cup back up, then put it away.​

“Don’t remind me.” Sora groaned, but then he reached over to his pants and pulled something out of a pocket. He tossed it at Prishe, who caught it. It was a piece of soft candy that was white and red striped. “Better get that nasty taste out of your mouth first.”​

Prishe nodded and picked up the candle.“Ya got my permission to tell Donald and Goofy when they wake up. Just make sure no one else can hear and that they know I don’t want the world ta know, ‘kay?”​

“’Kay.” Sora smiled as Prishe left the room. She unwrapped the candy and ate it; it was pretty good, tho she’d never had that kind before. It also helped get rid of the nasty taste of that tea. I get it, and I think Sora got it too; Everyone who gets their ass in the fire and who has ta fight has ta deal with potions and ethers at least; those tend ta taste funny at best, awful at worst. So I don’t blame him for having something on him ta get rid of any ick.

She went back to the room where her and Ulmia were. Ulmia looked up. “Everything okay?”​

Prishe nodded. “That..went better than I thought. I think I made a friend..”​

Ulmia grinned. “Didn’t think he had it in him to tell you to scram. You know me; I don’t have your abilities, but I do know people. My guess is he went though a lot..”​

“Yeah he did Ulmia; but don’t tempt me. You know my personal rule for what I find out readin’ minds..”​

Ulmia nodded. “Yeah. What someone’s thinking is their own business, and you’ll only talk about it with the person who thought that, and only if they know you can hear what they’re thinking.”​

Prishe then blew out the candle, then hit the light switch while Ulmia put a ribbon in the book she was reading to mark her place. As she yanked her boots off, Prishe thought; I bet Sora’s asleep now. Dunno if those bozos are going ta pick on him more but it’s possible, but everybody gotta sleep sometime..

Back downstairs, Jiminy hopped off Sora’s head and onto his shoulder. “I didn’t know what happened during the trial was still bothering you..”​

Sora sighed. “Didn’t want to talk about it. It’s kinda a confused mess at the moment anyway. But I guess I can’t really hide it, right?”​
Jiminy smiled. “Nope. Don’t forget tho, we’re here for you as friends.” He cuddled up against Sora’s cheek; Sora carefully put his hand up against Jiminy. If Jiminy hadn’t been a little cricket, this would have been a hug.​

As Sora let go, he said, “It’s been quite a mess so far tho, right Jiminy?” He saw Jiminy nod out of the corner of his eye. It had been quite an adventure on Olympus. I still wish that Hades hadn’t made a pass at that box. But I’m glad Herc was able to help, not to mention Megara and Phil. Boy, Phil was upset when he found out! I was hungry when I first showed up too; Meg helped by getting some gyros, was nice of her. Tho yeah, what they usually have for breakfast over there just doesn’t stick with me very long; yogurt and bread..

Jiminy then said, “It’ll work out. It always does.”​

“Yeah..Say, would ya like some help to get back up there?”​

“I can myself, but thank you.” He jumped to Sora’s outstretched hand; Sora carefully got Jiminy up to the matchbox. Jiminy hopped back in and snuggled back down. “Night!” he said.​

Sora laid back down. “Night!” He soon fell asleep; he had a fairly weird dream though that night, of him chasing a black haired girl around who wouldn’t talk to him…​

Back upstairs, it didn’t take long for Prishe to lay down and fall asleep. She started to dream..​

She found herself on La Theine Plateau, by Carbuncle’s circle. Carbuncle appeared and stood before her. “I thought you might want a few answers, so I asked Diablos to reach out to you.”

Prishe stepped back a bit. “Don’t tell me I did the wrong thing..”

Carbuncle shook his head. “You didn’t. You did the right thing; it’s a shame that fate will tear you two apart, but this will make a difference. He’s still regaining his wings though.”

That made Prishe’s head spin. “What do you mean?”

“Do you see that caterpillar over there?” Carbuncle motioned with a paw. Prishe looked over that way; on one of the huge flowers, was a little caterpillar.

Carbuncle nodded. “Sora’s kinda like that. Three times, he’s been forced back to that. Just a caterpillar of a keyblade wielder. But this time, he has the potential to become a butterfly, which will mean the Org should tremble in their shoes. That is, if he finds what he is looking for.”

Prishe’s eyes widened. “You mean, he could bust his limits and really fly this time?”

Carbuncle nodded. “They should not of messed with him in the first place. Chosen by the worlds and that keyblade, tho he does not know the first; do not tell him, for he has to figure that out on his own. But he is kind of like a dandelion; he’s really hard to get rid of, and he keeps coming back.”

Prishe smiled and nodded, then turned toward the caterpillar. “Fly, Sora. Fly, damnit, and find your answer before it’s too late!”

It was a strange dream, but she slept soundly for the rest of the night.
-------------

Next chapter preview; Back to Vana'diel with us! We're going to find out what Elizara's been up to and what her friends are worrying about. (Yes, there's going to be some of that, too.)
 
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KingdomKey

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Prishe is an awesome friend to have. I'm glad she could help lift Sora's spirits up, and told him the truth about her mind reading abilities too. Furthermore, I really enjoyed the part where Prishe warned Sora, Donald, Goofy, and Ulmia out of the way in case a loose arrow went the wrong way. And it was fun seeing Shantotto get in on some action after some interrupted sleep from Braig and co.

Also, Sora is looking for Xion? She's the only dark haired girl I can think of. xD

Overall, this was a really great chapter! I feel kind of sad at the idea of Prishe and Sora going their separate ways soon. But I can't wait to see how Elizara is doing too! :D
 

maryadavies

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Yes, the dark haired girl is Xion. I meant that as a aftereffect of what happened in DDD; he doesn't know who she is. Also, unconsciously, he wants to know who she is, if you get my meaning, hence why the dream-chasing! Of course he isn't going to find out who she is right away lol, but I figure it makes a good little..side effect..of what happened. ^^
 
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