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Chapter III: An Omen

King Mickey rose abruptly and violently from his workroom desk. I fell asleep? How? He rubbed his eyes and hopped off his oversized chair and ambled out of the royal bedroom. He was weary, as he just awoke from a troubling dream. Was it a dream? Even if it was?I take it as a bad warning… Mickey passed by and petted his dog, Pluto, as he made his way down a long flight of stairs, through the colonnade, and out into the courtyard. He was feeling strangely uncomfortable as he gazed into the starry night sky.

Mickey, following his gut feelings, rushed for the Gummi Ship hangar under the courtyard. The launch crew, the chipmunks Chip and Dale, were busily maintaining and modifying a new Gummi Ship. The king was pleased to see the two little critters working hard on the new, sleeker Gummi Ship model. Mickey, reluctant to disturb the chipmunks’ work, still finally made his way into the hangar and signaled for the chipmunks to initiate a test launch for the new ship. Confused, Chip was the first to speak in a panicked tone.

“But, your Majesty! I can say we’re only halfway, maybe three-quarters done! Who knows what glitches or mishaps this model may cause!”

“Gee, fellas, I appreciate the work that you’re doin’, but I really got to check something out. I have this feelin’ that something’s gone wrong…” Mickey explained.

“But what about the Queen!” Dale spurted. “And the castle!”

“Minnie will be in good hands. I trust that Donald an Goofy will be able to manage things while I’m gone,” Mickey thought for a quick moment. “Anyway, I don’t think I’ll be gone for too long.”

Without any further protests, the two chipmunks nodded their heads at the same time and proceeded to the control room. Mickey boarded the new Gummi Ship (a prototype) and awaited the launch. No doubt something is definitely up, he thought. I could use some help. First stop, Destiny Islands.

Chip and Dale watched the flare from the prototype Gummi Ship dim as the ship slowly disappeared from sight. With one quick glance at each other and another synchronized nod, the mini-launch crew scampered their way out of the hangar, through the courtyard, and into the castle to notify the royal court magician and the royal head guard.

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Despite the fact that he was sound asleep, Sora twitched in uneasiness, an unknown dream cursing his mind…

They’re back.

They’re all back.

Nothing can get rid of them for good.

There is no good, no light, no hope for a still end.

The Keyblade is useless.

What can you do? What can friends do? Nothing.

Sora gasped as he abruptly sat up on his bed. He was furiously perspiring, though no fever plagued him. He glanced out his bedroom window?seeing only the dim moonlight, realized that he was awoken unfortunately in the middle of the night. A long period of celebration kept Sora’s mind keen and on edge; sleep was not on his agenda. He looked out of his bedroom window once more and scanned the houses towards the right shore. Kairi’s home was pitch black and seemed serenely quiet. Sora, scanning the houses on the left shore, found Riku’s home lighted in some parts, yet with the same peaceful silence. Giving up, Sora slumped back into his bed and drifted off into sleep after a prolonged while.

The following morning, Sora rolled off his bed with a grumble. The lack of sleep and the preceding nightmare left him with a splitting headache. Nonetheless, Sora slowly put on his attire and made his way out to the beach.

Riku and Kairi were waiting for an hour (it was late morning) before Sora finally emerged on the shorelines. Kairi immediately noticed Sora’s lethargic and agonizing appearance and rushed by his side to support him. Riku, while also noticing, squinted his eyes and entered deep thoughts. Sora, unable to continue walking due to the severe headache, slouched and lost his balance. Kairi, unable to hold up Sora, fell with him onto the sand. Riku broke his trance and sprinted to aid his friends.

A look of predicament was fixed on Sora’s face. Riku, still thinking and wondering, was the first to question.

“Sora, what’s going on?”

Sora groaned and rubbed his head. “Ugh, no sleep and a bad dream. It’s a bad combo.”

Kairi was still concerned, What dream can keep him up all night? She sat up straight and asked, “Was it really that bad of a dream?”

Sora nodded and Riku assumed the worst. “Oh no,” Riku mumbled. Sora, confused, gave Riku a dazed and lost look of inquiry. Riku continued, “Sora, did your dream… say anything to you in particular?”

Straining to think clearly, Sora suddenly realized the depth and abstraction of his nightmare. “The darkness has returned. They’re back,” groaned Sora. He made an attempt to get back on his feet, slightly staggering. Kairi and Riku both lent him their hands for assistance. “Thanks,” Sora replied.

“That’s no ordinary dream,” Riku stated. “It’s more like an omen. We should be on a lookout for trouble.”

Kairi, somewhat in awe, looked at her two friends for answers. Sora responded, “It’s the Heartless. They’ll never be gone for good. That’s what my dream said.” Kairi covered her mouth in alarm and Sora feebly sighed.

“We’ll think of something if anything comes up,” said Riku.

Sora winced; still under the duress of his headache?though his condition was improving?rubbed his head once again and tried to stand as vertical as possible. Kairi patted his shoulder.

“Get some more rest, Sora. We’ll be here when you wake up.”

A bit unwillingly, Sora nodded and turned to make his way back into his home. He smiled though at the thought of his friends’ generosity and support. We’ll all go through with this together, he can hear them all say.

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