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Chapter Four: The Keyblade

Teyla and Jaden were 'found' wandering in the Dark Realm together with their packs over their shoulders by Jadis and Parin. Teyla was looking at the table in front of her in a large Ice Palace on the middle of a lake. Jaden was looking out of one of the wide windows with blank eyes. Teyla and Jaden gratefully accepted her help, what they didn't realize was the price that one of them would have to pay.

Teyla was starting to worry about Jaden because he wasn't acting right and it concerned her enough to ask Jadis. The two of them were waiting for Jadis to show up in the room. She shivered, not because of the cold, but because of this feeling of her sister being in danger and it was her fault. She did reach for her, but Syra didn't reach back until she fell into the darkness herself. And what was that strange thing that had appeared in her hands as Syra fell? She asked Jaden if he had seen it but he had shaken his head. Teyla decided that if she could find out what it was maybe, just maybe, she could use it for herself.

"Jaden, are you sure you didn't see anything as Syra fell?" Teyla finally broke the silence, feeling like she was being watched.

"I didn't see anything, Teyla. I'm sorry, but I didn't see anything. All I saw was her fall into the hole then it closed up.” Jaden turned his blank stare away from the window. "I've got a bad feeling like something’s gonna happen to Syra if we don't do something."

"Same here, though we both know she can take care of herself. After all, we tried to get her to come with us, but did she? No. It was her own fault for not coming with us." Teyla crossed her arms over her chest and anger spread across her face. "We BOTH reached out to her but she stopped inches from us and watched the darkness spread around our feet as it swallowed her."

Jaden watched her silently then looked over at the door as Jadis walked in. He stood up and bowed his head slightly; to him it felt like the right thing to do. "Thank you for taking us in."

Teyla looked at him funnily. Did he just bow to her? What is wrong with him? She turned her head back to Jadis and smiled as politely as she could.

Jadis smiled back at Teyla then sat down in a high-backed chair lined with wolf pelts. "You asked to see me?"

Teyla nodded. "I've been noticing that something odd has happened to Jaden since the Heartless came to our world, he hasn't been himself. I was wondering if you had any ideas as to why he has been acting like this, Your Majesty."

"No, I'm afraid I do not. It may be a temporary thing, he could have absorbed some of the darkness around him and that might have taken thin feeble roots that could break quickly. Though if that is correct or not I cannot say." Jadis smiled once more and Teyla felt a chill run up her spine. She resisted the urge to shudder. "I hope you both like your rooms and you find my palace to your liking."

Teyla and Jaden smiled and they both nodded. Teyla answered first. "I love my room. Thank you for letting us stay here, Your Majesty. And I love the view of the forest from my balcony. It is very beautiful."

"I appreciate everything you have given us; I like my room very much, thank you, and the pass you gave me to read in your library." Jaden was still standing and he bowed his head once more.

"You are both welcome. Was there anything else you needed, children?" They both shook their heads and she smiled. "You may leave if you wish, for I have matters to attend to elsewhere." She stood swiftly and walked past the table and through the large ice covered double doors. Teyla watched her retreating figure before standing up and grabbing Jaden’s wrist. She pulled him out the side door and down the hall to their rooms.

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Misty stood in the entryway of Khryistal's home with Max and Dewey, looking at the people staring at them. She asked a question to which she hoped for a good answer. "Are any of you from Destiny Islands?"

Syra was watching the little mouse, the tall dog, and the short duck with amusement on her face until the mouse spoke. The amusement disappeared instantly. "I am, my name is Syra. Who are you?"

Misty’s gaze snapped onto Syra. "My name is Misty Mouse. This is Dewey and Max, we were on our way to see some family friends who lived on the Destiny Islands but when we reached them there was nothing there but empty space."

"Who were you looking for?” Syra was still watching them warily.

"We were supposed to meet people named Sora, Riku and Kairi with their children. Also we were supposed to pass on my father's greetings to them."

Syra looked down with tears starting to well up. "Sora and Kairi are my parents. I can't believe the islands are gone." She dropped to her knees, with her face in her hands crying.

No one moved closer to her as the air started to feel hot and stuffy in the room. Olette was starting to move over to the window when a shadow lunged forward and slammed into the glass on the outside. She jumped back as they jumped against the window again.

Misty looked over at Syra who was still sobbing then up at Hayner and Khryistal. "Come on, Max, Dewey. We better go stop those Heartless from getting inside." Misty went to the door and walked out into the middle of the street. Immediately the shadows ceased their assault on the house and turned to steal Misty, Max and Dewey's hearts. They fought.

Inside the house Syra was still crying and memories were flashing through her head. Teyla and Jaden sitting next to her on the paopu tree; her dad helping her up when she fell off of her bike when she was six; Riku playing with her and Jaden on the beach; her mother and herself pinning Teyla onto the floor to shove her into a dress. All of the people she cared about, all of the people she loved, gone. Syra stood up with tears still streaming from her eyes, willing herself to fight to get them all back. Khryistal was shaking, watching Misty, Max and Dewey take a beating. I want to protect them, all of them, including the people I don't know. I need the power to protect them. Something I don't have and I need. Someone, anyone, please give me the power and strength to do what is right.

Two things happened in that second. Two Keyblades finally took their rightful places in their owner’s hands and both Syra and Khryistal ran out the door destroying the heartless as they swarmed around them. Misty looked over her shoulder briefly and gasped as she saw the two of them bowling their way to Misty, Max and Dewey, Keyblades in hand.

Syra was slashing and thrusting away with her Keyblade in her hands, feeling energy flow through her body. She called out in her head to whoever gave her the blade, Thank you. She continued her way through the heartless and stood next to Misty and Khryistal and she smiled through her tears.

"Now there are three Keyblade mistresses. At least we may be able to drop the population down." Misty lunged forward and slashed her Keyblade through several shadows that rose up from the ground. "Max, Dewey, go help Hayner and Olette. Keep the Heartless away from them! Hurry."

Max and Dewey nodded and bowled their way through to the door that Hayner had slammed shut after a Heartless tried to get in. Dewey fired off several spells into the crowd of Heartless while Max threw his shield around like a boomerang.

Syra and Khryistal were back-to-back moving in a small circle and twirling their blades around; they were making a dent in the population. Misty was pouncing from one area in the road to another, destroying every Heartless in her path.

All five of them had been battling the Heartless for several minutes when they stopped appearing. Syra and Khryistal continued their windmill and Misty joined them, finishing the job in about five minutes. They all stood there breathing hard with their weapons ready, Misty sat down breathing heavily.

"That was the hardest I’ve fought since I received this." Misty lifted up her right hand as Syra and Khryistal turned around to help her into the house. "Thanks, Syra. Khryistal. You saved me big time. I think I'm gonna get some sleep now."

Syra picked her up and watched her Keyblade disappear in a shower of sparks. Thank you, my Keyblade. You may leave if you wish. It vanished in a burst of purple, orange, yellow, red, pink, and blue sparks. Khryistal's disappeared in a bright blue light and she helped Syra carry Misty into the house with a slight smile on her face.

"Man, she must have used up a lot of energy to pass out like that. Think she'll be all right?" Khryistal giggled nervously, still shocked over what had happened to the three of them, and having a Keyblade.

"Yeah, she will. They were fighting for some time before we showed up here, so just let her get some rest then she'll be fine. Come on, we'd better get her inside quickly." Dewey moved aside from the door and it opened. Syra and Khryistal brought Misty in and laid her on the arm chair in the living room. Olette opened a closet and brought out a couple of blankets and a few extra pillows for Syra, Max, Dewey and Misty.

Syra had thanked her as she went to the stairs and lay down on the floor by the fireplace and curled up thinking about how she received the Keyblade. Every one went to bed and soon only Syra was awake. After a while she rolled over to face Misty on the chair. She watched Misty sleep for a while, waiting for sleep to take her. Above her head a muffled thump hit the floor and her head snapped as she zeroed in on the location of the thump. Syra kicked her blanket off away from the dying fire and walked towards the stairs.

"Who's there?” Syra moved slowly up the stairs and called her Keyblade. With it in hand she continued up the stairs and reached the landing. She started to feel uneasy as she approached Khryistal's room and she slowly opened the door. Syra sighed with relief, it was just Khryistal. She had fallen out of her bed and was laying sound asleep with one of her legs still on the bed. Smiling she released her Keyblade, backed out of the room and slowly closed the door. Still smiling and shaking her head she turned and a black gloved hand clamped down over her mouth as another arm pulled her backwards out the window at the other end of the hallway.

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"Sora... Are you sure one of the kids is here?" Riku was leaning against one of the buildings next to the train station. The two of them had appeared on the small amount of land that the wizard Yen Sid lived on and asked him if he knew where any of the others were. Yen Sid had told them to take the train to Sunset Terrace and wait for another train to take them to the main part of the town. "What I mean is, Sora, we also have to search for Kairi, too. Sora, are you even listening?"

Sora was looking out over the buildings towards the coast and he swore he saw a flicker of movement on the beach. "Yeah, I heard you, Riku. I know we do. But we also need to find the kids. I hope the one that showed up here is alright." Sora started to rub his forehead.

Riku watched his best friend. I can't believe the door unlocked, and our kids were there on the island with it. Damn it! Riku hit his head on the wall behind him, sighed, and looked up at the sky. As he looked a chill spread through the air. He sniffed the air, smelling the familiar tang of darkness. He continued breathing steadily. “Sora, I think we would be better off running than waiting for a train."

"Why?" Sora looked over his shoulder at Riku and saw the urgency in his eyes. "Oh great. Let’s go then." Sora took off running down the steps towards the underground passage with Riku by his side.

"Sora, there's something here. I can't tell what it is but it's dark. I can smell it and it stinks almost as bad as Xehanort and Xemnas. We'd better hurry." Riku was breathing heavily as they tore through the underground and out next to the train station and clock tower.

"Great, just great. We need to find them quickly then." Sora started to run forward again when Riku grabbed his wrist and pulled him back against the wall. Riku put a finger to his lips and pointed to the street entrance as two figures approached. The shorter one was struggling and thrashing against the arm that held her. The taller one slapped the smaller one across the face. The girl cried out and Sora and Riku gasped. "Syra!"

"Let me go! Please, let me go!" Syra tried to pull away from the black cloaked figure. The taller figure twisted her arm and she cried out again in pain. Syra swung her other fist around trying to hit the person. The figure caught her hand, spun her entirely around so both of her arms were pinned to her back and a portal opened in front of them.

"NO! SYRA!" Sora roared out and ran at the figure, summoning his Keyblades and swinging Oblivion and Oathkeeper at the figure's back. But he stopped short as the being twisted around and placed Syra in between them with a look of fear on her face.

"Daddy..." she whispered and tried to pull herself away again, but the grips on her wrists were like iron.

The figure didn't sense Riku lunge at him from the shadows in time to spin Syra around. The figure let go of her and spun around to face the three of them. Then the woman spoke. "Hmm. I underestimated you three."

Syra moved so that she was next to her father and summoned her Keyblade to their astonishment. "Who are you and why did you kidnap me?" Syra gripped her Keyblade and stood braced for whatever was coming.

"Hahaha. Who am I? That is none of your business yet. As to why I kidnapped you, that was my mission. I admit, I did not expect your father to arrive so quickly nor to have your uncle interfere, but still...” The figure laughed again and turned her head towards Riku and watched him tense up. "You once were a part of the Darkness, weren't you, Riku?"

"Yes, I was. But I was young and I didn't understand anything until Sora saved me from myself and Xehanort." Riku was holding the Road to the Dawn tightly in his right hand, so hard it was shaking violently.

Syra stood stock still, shivering as the air became colder and colder. Their breath became visible in a matter of seconds and ice started to form along the ground around the woman. "Hmm. Too bad I didn't get my hands on you; I know someone who would be overjoyed to see you, Syra." At that moment the woman stepped back into a dark portal that erupted behind her and vanished.

"Who is it? Tell me!" Syra lunged towards the portal and hit the ground as it disappeared. "Shit!"

Sora looked at his daughter sitting on the ground with the Keyblade in her right hand, trembling with anger. He let go of his Keyblades and walked over to her. He kneeled down beside her and hugged her. "Syra, are you okay?"

Syra was trembling from the cold and rage that was building up in her. When her father hugged her the rage simmered down and she sobbed with relief. She had found two of the people she cared about. "I am n-now. Th-thanks dad, you s-s-saved me."

Riku was on her other side looking at the Keyblade in her hands. It was a varying colored blade like twilight; with half of a yellow sun and streams of orange were coming off of it at a part near the top. The grip was in the shape of a grey moon. Her keychain was both half-moon and half-sun. "Syra, how did you get this, and when?" Riku looked up when it vanished into purple, orange, yellow, red, pink and blue sparks.

"I got i-it today w-when I had t-to help Misty pr-protect Hayner, and O-Olette along w-with Khryistal, M-Max, and Dewey. Kh-khryistal has one, too, o-only hers is d-different than mine. Hers looks l-like Misty's." Sobs were still racking her body as her dad hugged her.

Sora and Riku looked at each other. Sora picked Syra up and started to walk back through town with Riku next to him. "Come on. Let’s go there then and let you get some rest."

Syra nodded, leaned against her father’s chest and dozed off. A strand of her long hair fell onto her face and Riku reached out to it, pulled it back and tucked it behind her left ear.

Riku was breathing through his nose, waiting for the tang of darkness to return to the air the entire way through the streets. Nothing had shown up by the time they reached the door to Hayner and Olettes’ home. He knocked on the door loudly. He looked back at Sora holding Syra in his arms and turned back to the door as Khryistal opened the door sleepily.

"What the...?!" she looked at Syra then at Sora and Riku and pulled back, letting them in. "What happened to her? How did you find her? What the hell?!"

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