What exactly happened when Sora used Riku's key?



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Veevee

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I am wondering about this for a while now. In Kingdom Hearts 1, Sora uses Riku's key to release the hearts within him - namely Kairi, the hearts of the princesses and the sleeping heart of Ventus. In the process his body fades and he becomes a heartless, additionally forming Roxas. What I am wondering about is what exactly happened to Sora's body. The series teaches that a body with a strong will devoid of a heart becomes a nobody because the nobody is formed from the remaining will and possesses the body. The heart becomes a heartless or takes shelter somewhere until it can return to the body (as with Ven). Does this mean that Roxas didn't only take a part of Sora's memories, but also his body - which would mean that Sora is just a walking heart up to the point he merges with Roxas in KH2. Taking Ansem SoD in consideration it is very well possible to survive for quite a time without a body and just a heart (even with a very dark one) since Ansem SoD was able to survive for about 10 years in that state. This would give an additional explanation why Sora needed Roxas so much - he needed his body back before he would degenerate.

The other possibility is that Kairi restored Sora's body from scratch. This would mean that we have two copies of Sora's body - the restored one and the one Roxas possesses and whose shape is altered due to Ven's sleeping heart that took shelter in it. When they fused, one of the bodies dissolved because only one was needed.

There might be another possibility I can't think of, so I'd like to hear your opinion. If you find mistakes in my assumptions, feel free to point them out. I tried to recreate the stuff as far as I understood it.
 

Lonbilly

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You pretty much summed it up. From Sora's restoration at the hand of Kairi up to his "reunion" with Rucksack after the prologue, he's pretty much a walking heart similar to Ansem SoD but, ya know, without actually being a Heartless. When Roxas was formed, he took Sora's body (and soul) along with Ven's heart.

This is why I'm still partially convinced Sora, Riku and Kairi will actually be the keys to restoring everyone in KH3. Riku has shown he can awaken hearts, Sora has connections to everyone and has freed hearts in the past, and Kairi has created a "body" for someone who was just a heart. But, uh, that's a different discussion for a different topic.
 

DarkGrey Heroine

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I used to think Sora's heart has proved itself strong enough at that point in the story for it to be able to maintain a physical form (the body) when Kairi brought it back. However, Kairi was the key factor bringing Sora's heart back together with a physical form, so Kairi's influence must be there. Maybe Kairi doesn't necessarily have the power to create bodies from scratch, but rather to reach the hearts and awaken a power inside them, which is a power of creation, in general. So from that point, after Kairi calling it out, Sora's heart created a body for him anew. Ven's heart, even in a dormant state, also basically "created" his original physical appearance back, so it had a power to create shapes and thus shaped Sora's body into a Ventus body in the end. Just for the sake of imagining the logic let's say, had Roxas had a heart of his own and stronger than a dormant heart, the greater power would have had the greater influence and the body would have looked differently.
But if a heart can recreate the original body and probably live like this as well, then there must be other reasons why reuniting with the Nobody is crucial.
 

Sephiroth0812

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But if a heart can recreate the original body and probably live like this as well, then there must be other reasons why reuniting with the Nobody is crucial.
I would assume that the crux of the matter here is that the heart in question cannot do this alone on its own.
There has always to be a second force in play with which the heart can work.
In Sora's case, this force was Kairi and her powers which stabilized the whole construct.
In Ventus'/Roxas' case Sora's actual physical body was there and available for Ventus' dormant heart to "imprint" on.

Furthermore, depending on what you mean by "reuniting with the Nobody is crucial", in Sora's and Roxas' case it was primarily because Roxas held some of Sora's loose memories within himself.
Naminé directly speaks about this in Days and while there exists a different solution that wouldn't require Sora and Roxas to merge, it would take several years, something DiZ isn't willing to tolerate and due to the Organisation still following their plans also unfeasible to do time-wise.
In Naminé's and Kairi's case however I dare to assume that it is not exactly something that Kairi herself is missing and needs back, but rather a way for Naminé, who according to both dialogue and reports in the games, is even less than a shadow with no parts a Nobody normally has, to endure and not face total erasure.

As for "normal" Nobodies I'd say it comes down to the fact that all parts that belong to the original being have to be put back into one place.
In the cases of Roxas and Naminé (and possibly Xemnas) there were always more than one heart involved and while they originate from their original being, there was developed something more, a surplus so to say that does have the basics to become an independent being of its own.
 

DarkGrey Heroine

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Furthermore, depending on what you mean by "reuniting with the Nobody is crucial", in Sora's and Roxas' case it was primarily because Roxas held some of Sora's loose memories within himself.
Naminé directly speaks about this in Days and while there exists a different solution that wouldn't require Sora and Roxas to merge, it would take several years, something DiZ isn't willing to tolerate and due to the Organisation still following their plans also unfeasible to do time-wise.
It seems messed-up memories cause greater problems than one may think at first, in the end. Since memories are key components of someone's individuality or... stability as an individual being. The fact that there was indeed a solution that didn't require Sora and Roxas to reunite as they did makes Roxas's situation all the more tragic. Roxas's "I hate you so much" line towards DiZ also becomes more justified in this light.
 

DarkosOverlord

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*comes in*
*reads question*
*reads answers*

So, sticky thread for the next time anyone says Kairi is a useless character with zero redeeming features?
 

Muke

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*comes in*
*reads question*
*reads answers*

So, sticky thread for the next time anyone says Kairi is a useless character with zero redeeming features?
She's still useless in all of the following games though. Actively doing something in one out of eight games (ten if we count the x's) isn't exactly that much different from doing nothing at all in the grand scheme of things. Sure, it's thanks to her that Sora is even who he is right now, but honestly? I just can't really say that that one time she was useful totally makes her not-useless.

Of course it'd be different if they actually MADE HER USE HER POWERS, but for me the train has left the station already. I can only hope she'll do stuff in KH3, which isn't guaranteed just because she has a Keyblade and is training now.

She's just a plot device these days
 

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It seems messed-up memories cause greater problems than one may think at first, in the end. Since memories are key components of someone's individuality or... stability as an individual being. The fact that there was indeed a solution that didn't require Sora and Roxas to reunite as they did makes Roxas's situation all the more tragic. Roxas's "I hate you so much" line towards DiZ also becomes more justified in this light.
Correct, memories are an integral part of a heart and thus of a persons very own existence. It's also why you can never have an exactly identical clone of a being. Some experiences, some situations etc. will always differ and thus create different memories, shaping/nurturing the heart in question differently.

I've looked up the exact wording of the scene actually:
358/2 Days said:
Naminé: I wasn't sure I'd see you again.

Riku: You made me a promise.

Naminé: To look after Sora. I remember. I'm sorry... I'm not sure I've
kept that promise very well.

Riku: What happened?

Naminé: Some of Sora's memories are missing.

Riku: How can that be?

Naminé: They're escaping through Sora's Nobody into a third person--
and now they're starting to become a part of her.


Riku: You can't get the memories back out.

Naminé: If they're still separate...then yes, I think so.

(She looks at the sketchbook on the table of the picture of Axel, Roxas,
and Xion)

Naminé: But if they join with her memories, things get a lot more complicated.
I would need to untangle her memory before I could finish Sora's... What was
supposed to take months might take years. DiZ would be furious.


Riku: So what's the solution?

Naminé: If I try to just jump in and rearrange her memory...then I risk Sora
waking up to find out that nobody remembers him anymore. I can't do that to
him. It's too late either way. His awakening will have to be delayed. I never
imagined Sora's Nobody and the other one would fight so hard to be their own
people. Unfortunately, the only real solution...is for them both to go away.


Naminé: Did you know her face was blank at first? Only now can you see
someone. That proves some of Sora's memories are inside her. Some inside
her, some inside Sora...others inside Sora's Nobody... I can't sort it out
anymore. All I can do is pick up the pieces once what has to be done, is done.


Riku: All right, then.
So, strictly spoken, the memory mess Naminé created in CoM is the root cause of all this suffering around, with Xion's ability to "siphon" loose memories being the main culprit of taking advantage of Sora's untangled memories.
By the time the above conversation between her and Riku takes place, it has become already so bad that no other solutions remain feasible.

This means that people jumping to conclusions could identify both Naminé and Xion as the ones "guilty" of Roxas' unpleasant fate to lose his individual existence, because their actions created the situation in which it became necessary to do it.
With Sora's loose memories practically scattered across three different individuals, mixed up with their own new memories (hence why Roxas starts to have dreams of Sora), it becomes close to impossible for Naminé to continue her work.

Nonetheless though, the true culprit and instigator of the whole mess is, as so often in this series, Xehanort.
Through Xemnas, it was Xehanort who formulated the plan to mess up Sora's memories and use them to create a puppet "Keyblade Wielder" for use within the Organisation.
In another scene in Days when Xemnas and Saix are speaking about Roxas' coma they do mention that "stripping the Keyblade Hero of his memories" is part of their overall plan and that "Naminé has begun her work".

As such, messing up Sora's memories was always part of the official plans of the Organisation.
In CoM, Marluxia just hijacked these parts of the plan and tried to use them for his own goals to overthrow Xemnas.
 

DarkosOverlord

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She's still useless in all of the following games though. Actively doing something in one out of eight games (ten if we count the x's) isn't exactly that much different from doing nothing at all in the grand scheme of things.
Beg to differ, it meant a lot to me.
It meant there's at least one game when I can love the supposedly female main character.
Don't really care about the following games, she had her blaze of glory. She's not a useless character with zero redeeming features is what I'm getting at.
Many fans are stuck with KH II's image of Kairi and apply it to EVERY iteration of Kairi.

And honestly, she did more the two times she brought Sora back than what many recurring characters have, too. I'll take the uber-powerful, heartless-restoring Princess of Heart over... four out of Ansem's six apprentices, Pete, Master Eraqus.
 

Elfdemon

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Kairi is a Princess of Heart, so she has no darkness in her heart, so she can't form a Heartless. If her heart is lost, it doesn't become a Heartless. And therefore, she doesn't form a Nobody. In order for a Nobody to be created, a Heartless needs to be created. Instead, her body just lays comatose with no heart.

Kairi's heart was within Sora. When Sora stabbed himself with the Keyblade of Heart, his heart and Kairi's hearts were released. In order for a Nobody to be created, a heart needs to be released from a body and a Heartless needs to form. Sora's heart was released from his body, which turned into a Shadow Heartless. Which also created Sora's Nobody, Roxas. Kairi's heart was released from a body, Sora's body, so a Nobody was created, which is Namine. Since it was Kairi's heart that was released from a body, then it's Kairi's Nobody. Sora's Heartless acted as the Heartless needed to form a Nobody for both Sora's Nobody, Roxas, and Kairi's Nobody, Namine. Roxas is made out of Sora's body and soul, and Namine is made out of Sora's body and soul, even though she's Kairi's Nobody.

Since Kairi's heart can't become a Heartless, it returned to her body when it was released from Sora's heart. Thus, recompleting Kairi. Namine didn't need to be destroyed for Kairi to return because she's not made out of Kairi's body and soul. She's made out of Sora's body and soul.

Ventus' heart stayed behind in Sora's body/Nobody, Roxas, instead of being released like the other hearts. This is why Roxas looks like Ventus. He is Sora's Nobody, but has the appearance of Ventus due to Ventus' heart being within him. If he didn't have Ventus' heart within him, he would've looked like Sora.

Kairi "purified" Sora's Heartless, most likely using powers she has as a Princess of Heart, which caused him to turn back into himself.

Sora's body was in possession of Roxas and Namine at the time, as they are made out of Sora's body and soul. So, it's possible that Kairi purifying him gave him a new/temporary body essentially, it's possible that Kairi purifying him caused some of his body and soul to return to him, or it's possible that his heart was just putting on the appearance of a body, and in reality, he was just a walking, talking heart. Any of those three possibilities are likely.
 
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