Disclaimer in Chapter 1
Hello, friends. It's my turn now to continue this saga of dreams, dragons, and whatever the heck you want out of a Square Enix based story. Did anyone see the PlayStation 1 CG openings of the first six FF games? So gothic and weird, but so cool. Anyway, Kingdom Hearts 3 came out. Yay! Now, let's see how long it takes to make Kingdom Hearts 4. Well, enough of being the middle-aged bachelor neighbour to Dustin Hoffman, I want to say thank you to my co-author. She did a wonderful job on the last chapter. Clara was so cool.
"I never loved my brothers. A sad thing for a man to admit, but it's true. You were the brother I chose."
-King Robert Baratheon I
Chapter 5 – Broken Teeth
While Kyra dealt with the strange Clara in her 'home world', Dragon and Albus were continuing their venture throughout the Yorkshire-like meadows.
Dragon wiped his brow, staring at the fields before turning back to the road in front of them.
At first, he'd enjoyed the sight of the beautiful scenery. Now, if he saw another patch of gravel or grass, he'd pull his hair out from the boredom and frustration.
"AAGH! JUST CHANGE ALREADY!" He screamed, stirring up a dirt cloud with a kick.
Albus rolled his eyes at the older boy's outburst. "Dude, aren't you meant to be the calm and patient one?"
Dragon groaned loudly, his shoulders slouching. "Albus, we've been on this road for hours. We haven't seen any signs, pit stops, or even any Dream Eaters. Can't believe I'm saying this, but I would love to fight a Dream Even right now. At least it would be a change from this road."
Albus clapped his hands sarcastically. "Congrats. You're no longer the shy, bookworm guy. You're the hyperactive, early 2000's anime guy who screams at every little thing."
Dragon sighed, scratching behind his ear. "Sorry, Albus. I didn't mean to lose it. It's just every minute we waste, Kyra is getting pulled down deeper by the Nightmare." Dragon clenched his fists. "For all I know, we could only have one more second. It could even be too late." Just thinking that made his stomach churned.
Albus moved closer to the older boy. "This Kyra gal really must be important to you." A mischievous smile grew on his face. "Is she your girlfriend?" He asked innocently, batting his eyelashes like a butterfly.
"What!?" Dragon screeched, causing his dimples to glow red and his voice to go up an octave. "Don't be stupid."
Albus laughed at him. "The look on your face! You do like her!"
Dragon tucked his hands into his pockets, avoiding eye contact. "Look, she's just a friend who got me through a ton of difficult stuff. I like her as a 'friend'. I only like her as a 'friend'. Do you understand me, you strange little child?"
Albus scoffed. "You really are a stick in the mud, aren't ya?" The young archer crossed his arms. "I wish my aunt was here. She was way cooler."
"Aunt?" Dragon questioned. "I thought you didn't know who your family was? How do you know you have an aunt?"
Albus was about to answer him, but paused as confusion shadowed his features. He scratched his head. "Huh. Honestly, I don't know. One moment, I knew I had an aunt. Now, I can't remember. It's like my brain flickered or something."
Dragon rubbed his eyes, slightly frustrated. He knew Albus was a young boy and, as the older one of the two, he needed to be patient. However, with the constant teasing, it was giving him a headache.
"Albus, maybe it would be better if you went home?" Dragon suggested.
"WHAT!" Albus screamed, causing the young samurai's eyes to widen from the shock. Both stopped in their tracks and stood still in the middle of the road.
"I offer to help you find your girlfriend, save you from a nightmare tree, and in return you want me to leave?!" Albus huffed with his cheeks bright red from the rage.
"Look, Albus. I really have to find Kyra and I can't be babysitting and rescuing at the same time," Dragon explained. He didn't wish to be cruel to the young child, especially after his own experience with Golbez. At the same time, he couldn't add on more problems on top of the ones he already has.
Albus's expression changed from anger to sad desperation. "But Dragon, I don't want to go back! I want to go on an adventure and go outside that stupid forest. If I go back, my life might as well be over."
"It's not like your real," Dragon replied without a second thought.
Albus gasped, taking a step back.
Dragon's eyes widened from the realization of what he had said. Immediately, the guilt gripped his heart.
"Albus, I didn't mean...OUCH!" Dragon screamed as Albus kicked his leg.
"YOU'RE A BIG JERK, YOU KNOW THAT!" Albus shouted, tears stinging his eyes. "You know what, forget you! I don't need you!" Albus began marching down the road.
Dragon's stomach sank. What right did he have to say that to a young kid? Despite all his stupid jokes about Kyra, he was, for all his best intentions, trying to help him.
"Albus, wait!" Dragon shouted as he ran after the young archer.
Albus shot him a glare over his shoulder. "Too late, Dragon. Just leave me alo-" Albus didn't have a moment to finish his sentence as a giant shadow knocked him out.
"Albus!" Dragon screeched. He was about to take out his sword to save the young archer. However, a giant blue and black panda in a cape with rainbow like paws and feet appeared right in front of him.
"A Dream Eater!" Dragon gasped, recognizing the symbol on the Kooma Panda Dream Eater.
Before Dragon could even touched the hilt of his sword, the panda whacked Dragon and his world went dark.
Groaning, Dragon regained consciousness as he struggled to open his eyes. At first, his vision was blurry, but soon, his surroundings slowly took shape. The buzz ringing in his eardrums cleared as his mind focused.
Dragon got up, rubbing his sore head. He and Albus were in a cage and outside of that said cage look like a bandit camp. A couple of tents, some stolen goods, and a fire pit burning.
What caught Dragon's eye was the centre of the camp. It was a normal metallic blue circle; nothing important didn't really stand out. Yet he found it strange that it was so randomly placed. Why not in a tent or with the other stolen goods?
Speaking of stolen, he looked at his belt and then at Albus's sleeping form. Whoever kidnapped them had really thought their kidnapping through as their weapons were confiscated.
Dragon bent down to wake up the young kid. "Albus? Albus, wake up, kid." Dragon gently poked the young archer.
Albus yawned. "Dragon? Can you tell me the story about the rabbits again?"
Dragon rolled his eyes. "Ugh, wake up."
Albus slowly got up and, like Dragon, examined the area. "Where are we?"
"You, my little cosplay friend, are in the Doofenshmirtz's Blitzball Incorporated Arena of Death!"
Dragon and Albus turned to find where the whiny, German-like voice came from.
Four nightmare Kooma Pandas were carrying a giant chair on their shoulders. On it was a very skinny man with a strange jawline, a slight hunchback, a long nose, incredibly short brown hair, and finally, eyes that looked like they had not slept in ages. He was wearing a green shirt, a white furry coat, brown trousers, and black boots.
"So, you petty wanderers dare to stumble onto the great Tri Blitzball Champion, Doofenshmirtz!" He said with an added threatening tone.
He then looked unsure and scratched his neck. "Well, I wouldn't call myself a champion. I mean, I never played the game, but it's kind of worked with the gimmick I'm trying to do here, but you know it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter! YOU'RE MY PRISONERS!" He screeched manically.
"Why have you kidnapped us?!" Dragon demanded from the strange bandit.
In fact, it did feel strange. He had never met this Doofenshmirtz guy, but he remembered Kyra mentioning this strange scientist once who was obsessed with a pet of two brothers she knew who pretty much was like the man he saw in front of him. Yet that one was a scientist, not some sport bandit.
He then remembered what Merlin told him before he left. He could meet people he never met before in this world, but what if that meant meeting alternative versions of them that were integrated into this created dream world.
"Now that you two are my prisoners, you will play Blitzball until you die!" Doofenshmirtz crackled insanely.
Dragon scratched his head. "What the heck is Blitzball?"
Doofenshmirtz sighed and proceeded in a bored tone. "It's basically basketball in a bubble swimming pool."
Dragon and Albus nodded in understanding. "Oh yeah."
"Makes total sense," responded Albus.
"Why the obsession?" Dragon asked.
Doofenshmirtz's eyes become teary. "My obsession with Blitzball stems from my traumatic childhood."
Both captives could have sworn they heard a sad violin playing somewhere.
"You see, when I was a little boy my mother-AHHH" Doofenshmirtz screamed as a ball hit him directly in the face.
"You're not going to tell them more of your whiny stories."
Doofenshmirtz regained himself, now having a black eye. "Curse you, Jecht the Blitzball player! I was telling the prisoners my traumatic childhood story and you ruined it with your jock attitude. Why must you kill my dramatic Oscar winning performances?"
Jecht, who appeared to be a young fifteen-year-old with short but wild black hair and tanned skin. He wore only a sleeveless, short, leather jacket; leather black, long shorts; and had a blue bandana on his head.
He rolled his eyes. "I was trying to save my ears. What's your excuse?"
Doofenshmirtz gritted his teeth at the sports jock. Why the heck did he recruit him, a giant cockroach would be a better hench... eh he meant to think blitzball player. Whatever the case, he had to make do with the worst he had.
Doofenshmirtz got to the point. "As my helpless damsels in distress, you will be having a Blitzball match against this sloth."
Jecht glared at Doofenshmirtz with an evil eye, causing the insecure bandit to shift.
"Eh, as I was saying, you will go against my, eh, star player," Doofenshmirtz continued with an dried up, miserable tone causing Jecht to grin cockily. "You two, plus three dream eaters, vs him and four dream eaters. Five vs five. See, I'm not such a nasty guy. I believe in all that stuff. You know equal rights, political correctness, and getting offended by every bad tweet that disagrees with someone's life choices."
Jecht sighed with boredom. "Dude, you really, really try too hard."
Doofenshmirtz jumped out of his chair. "Hey, I..eh, I...eh."
Jecht raised a brow at him, unimpressed.
He huffed and re-seated himself before motioning for the Nightmares to take him back to his tent. "We will see who will have the final say, Jecht the Blitzball player. Get ready for the match of your lifetime, boys." The strange man laughed maniacally.
Dragon scratched his head. "Well...that happened, I guess."
He turned to look at Jecht. "Look, um, we really don't have time for this. I have some money on me, could we...?"
"Nuh-uh. Sorry dude, but that never works for me." Jecht shrugged off.
"But you and the weirdo, don't you hate each other?" Albus questioned.
"Yeah...downside is I got an idiot for a boss, upside is I play all the Blitzball I want. So why would I want to lose out on that."
Dragon sighed. "Look, we have a mission we need to-"
"Again, not my problem, dude," Jecht interrupted. "See you at midnight, boys. Look forward to some bone breaking." Jecht, finished with the conversation, made his way to his own tent.
Dragon leaned his head against the bars, groaning. Merlin did say this world would create obstacles between him and reaching Kyra. It was more than obvious these Blitzball bandits were created by this world to do so. He straighten up.
"Albus, we need to think of a plan. They haven't told us a thing about the game, so we need to learn as we play and... Albus?" He saw the young archer was slumped down on the floor of the cage trying to get to sleep.
"Albus?" Dragon questioned again.
"So, I exist now?" He rebuffed sarcastically.
Dragon bit his lip, remembering their little fight. "Okay, you're right. I was a jerk. Can we try and move on, so we don't end up being Dream Eater food?"
"They'll probably complain about how you would taste like. My money is on trash," Albus shot back at Dragon.
The young samurai clenched his fists, having enough of this dispute. Granted, he was the one who started it and he was sorry, but he did not have to play lightning rod to this brat.
"Just go to sleep," he answered more harshly than he had intended it to be. He slumped down on the cage floor and let sleep take over him.
"Jerk," Albus bit back.
The sound of clanging broke through the night's silence. Both Dragon and Albus were fluttering their eyes weakly from their abrupt awakening.
Jecht was banging a wooden stick on the cage's bars until he had their full attention. Then he threw it aside. "The idiot wants to play the killing game."
The boys turned to look at each other with tired, red eyes. While no words were said, their eyes and facial expressions were all the mutual feelings both needed to exchange with one another.
They did not like each other.
The camp had been lit up with four bonfires outside the camp, each guarded by a Kooma Panda nightmare. Doofenshmirtz was sitting in a royal box, quite like the one the Red Queen had for Alice's trial in Wonderland, only recoloured sky and navy blue with a Blitzball symbol in the middle column.
Jecht led the two young companions into the centre blue, metal circle. Dragon and Albus stood on the right side while Jecht stood on the left.
Doofenshmirtz stood up from the seat in his box, waving his hand around like the man was a president in a parade. "Ladies and gentlemen!" He announced proudly, voice booming in the mostly empty area.
"There's no one here idiot," Jecht answered with all the sarcasm he could muster.
"There are the Dream Eaters!" Doofenshmirtz rebuked.
Jecht looked at the four nightmares, raising an eyebrow "Seriously?"
Doofenshmirtz slouched down back to his seat. "Okay, so here are the rules. First player who has the highest points within the time limit wins. It's five vs five, yada, yada, swimming pool quidditch," Doofenshmirtz summarized with the most pathetic and bored voice anyone could make.
Doofenshmirtz snarled at Jecht. "You happy now? You happy for killing the one thing I look forward to in my life, you miserable jock?"
Jecht stroked his chin. "Yeah, feels pretty good."
Doofenshmirtz whined in his chair, banging his fists against the armrests like a little boy. After his tantrum, he clapped his hands which caused the blue circle to light up.
Dragon looked down at his feet, shocked to see water engulfing them. It didn't take long for the three to be trapped in a giant bubble full of water inside. Dragon tried to hold his breath, terrified of suffocating from the water.
Yet he found no reason to. Despite the circumstances, he found that he could breath perfectly fine. The bubble's maximum size was equal to that of a football stadium. Two golden circles appeared from each side, indicating they were goals.
Next to Dragon and Albus three blue skinned, yellow-greenish, bellied sea horses appeared with long blue fins with longish dragon-like tails and the spirit symbol on their chest.
Jecht had four nightmare Tatsu Steeds appear on his side of the bubble, except they had a darker navy-blue colour then their spirit counterparts and purple stomachs with the nightmare symbol on their stomachs.
A red and black Dream Eater appeared in the middle of the two teams. Dragon and Jecht swam towards it and get ready for the call.
Dragon felt the intensity of the ball. He couldn't understand why, but he felt a surge of energy just by looking at this small kid's toy. It reminded him of the struggle matches back at Twilight Town. This adrenaline rush flowing through his bloodstream. The feeling that his brain was going to turn off and become a complete slave to his bones.
The silence was murder. He felt like a gun was at the back of his head, the urge to grab the ball was so intense. He had no idea why. It was just a ball and this whole match was simply filler to keep them from reaching Kyra. Yet the idea of grabbing that ball and making Jecht swim for his life to get it gave Dragon an incredible sensation of exhilaration.
Is this why people went so crazy for football?
"PLAY BALL!" Doofenshmirtz screamed at the top of his lungs.
Dragon was about to take the ball, but Jecht punched the young samurai in the face and took it. The Blitz jock swam a few meters away from him and threw it to a nightmare Tatsu Steed. That said Tatsu Steed aired the ball into its airhole and blew it straight into a goal.
Albus grunted as he took the ball into his arms. He tried to swim towards the enemy's goal, but he felt one of the nightmare Tatsu Steeds casted blind on the archer. This had caused Albus to let go to tend to his eyes.
A spirit Tatsu Steed came from behind Albus and headbutted the ball towards another spirit Tatsu Steed, who blew it towards Dragon who swam at the opposite side of the goal. The young samurai caught it and kicked it to the goal.
Jecht grunted. He took the ball and flat out punched a spirit Tatsu Steed then he used his legs to put it in a head lock and catapult the spirit into another one of its kind.
The third spirit Tatsu Steed shot a dozen of blizzard attacks at Jecht causing the jock to let go of the ball and float upside down like a dead fish.
Albus was about to get the ball, but Jecht got his second wind and twisted his body like a tornado and shot the ball directly into the goal.
One of the spirits Tatsu Seed shot a blizzard attack at the ball, allowing Albus to catch it in his arms. He started to swim as fast as he could towards the goal. He felt the nightmare Tatsu Seeds closing in on him like a pack of prison dogs.
Luckily for him, his spirits counterparts were able to intercept the nightmare counterparts and gave way to a skirmish. Albus was able to use this to his advantage to get to the goal! All he had to do was shoot like hell and-oh no.
Jecht already had made it to that goal, taking the role of goalie. His arms crossed and a smug smile decorated his face with arrogance.
Albus gulped. That lunatic would beat the crap out him. He quickly thought of any scenario of not ending up as a watery, bloody pulp. After some quick thinking, all scenarios said he would end up as a watery, bloody pulp.
He was screwed.
Jecht positioned his arms, ready to grab the young tike and break him in half. He attempted to make his strike, but Dragon came from behind. He slid his arms behind Jecht and put him in a headlock.
While Dragon was focusing on his battle with Jecht, he motioned for Albus to take the strike.
Albus nodded in response. He swam as fast as he could to the top of the bubble. He used his energy to kick the ball into the air outside the bubble's barrier. He used the pressure of the water to push himself outside of the barrier as well.
The laws of gravity took their course, causing the archer to fall back into the bubble but he did in the split second he had no matter how short his move. He could see clearly the ball in front of him and, with all his might, he smashed it back into the bubble, breaking the barrier with a thunderous echo.
Dragon gulped with surprise. How did the kid do that? With his small size and small skill of swimming, he should have never made such an incredible move.
It reminded Dragon of how Albus saved him from the nightmare tree. It took the kid only one shot from his arrows to take down the monster.
It's strange. This kid could be hopeless and a pain in the butt, but when Dragon needed him, he just turned into this pro. As if nothing could take him down.
Why did this kid have such the ability? Who exactly was he?
Doofenshmirtz yawned, this match was so dull. The kid got a signature move, big whoop. When had Jecht not done that?
It was like a soap opera, just seeing the replayed predictable storyline. Where was the surprise? The effort? He couldn't feel the excitement in his heart, just the growing tiredness.
If only there was a way to make this match more entertaining.
Doofenshmirtz moved to get his goblet of wine. Instead, surprisingly he had reached a new item that had not been there originally. "Huh?"
Confused, he examined the new item. Some kind of small glass bottle. Inside, there appeared to be a small shrimp-like dream eater violently attacking the insides.
Doofenshmirtz found a letter stuck onto the bottle. He unclipped it and started to read.
'Feeling bored? Getting tired of looking at the stupid bubble?
Then throw this in and have the match of a lifetime!
From your biggest fan.'
"Biggest fan!" Doofenshmirtz exclaimed. "I've always wanted a biggest fan to acknowledge my greatness from afar. And if this is from my biggest fan, then it must be real, right? Ah, who cares? I have a biggest fan, that's all that matters."
Without further ado, he edged toward the bubble from his box. A quick swing of his arm and he threw the vial into the bubble.
Dragon looked down to see his acorn necklace glowing purple, beeping with quick pace.
"Wait, this is like what happened with the tree!" He realized.
The vial smashed through the barrier into the bubble. It exploded with a fury, causing all the Dream Eaters to explode, the tents flying off the ground and into the sky. Even Doofenshmirtz's box crumpled from the explosion, leading to the bandit getting trapped inside the rubble.
Dragon, Albus, and Jecht covered their eyes from the intense light. Without realising it, the bubble was transforming into a completely new challenge all together.
Abyss of the Otherworld
The light finally died down.
The three players unshield their eyes.
Still inside the magical, breathable water but not in the bubble. Not even in the same world.
At the bottom of this new ocean, the earth's core was beating its mighty lava, stars were shining in the sky like candlelights. Random ruins from various world's popped out from the watery soil.
Dragon wondered if it was possible to swim to the surface. The idea faded quickly. Like the forest, the dream environment would make sure he would always be swimming to the top without end.
A crackle shook the still waters.
The three players turned to see the new challenge in front of them.
A giant, crimson shelled, dark green skinned shrimp came into view. The monster had a nightmare symbol plainly on its forehead. Three giant circles on its back using electricity to power themselves up like canons.
Dragon gulped as the nightmare darted forward in his direction. The water gave the beast speed that could rival a bull.
Dragon moved out of the way in time, but not enough for his arm got hit by the shell. He grabbed it in pain.
Albus took out a potion for Dragon.
The young samurai felt the pain being silenced in his arm. He gave a swift nod to his comrade.
The shrimp's electric circles began to power up. Like a chain, the energy in the circles surged through a makeshift tunnel, creating a highly powerful blast.
Jecht made haste and tackled Dragon and Albus into the deep. They had missed the attack, but were no closer to beating the monster.
Jecht examined the beast. He had no idea what got them into this mess, but he would be cursed if he was killed by a shrimp.
He looked closer at the circles. He could have sworn he saw a second light inside a circle, one in each of the flash circles.
He paused to think back to the attack. When the shrimp shot it, the circles had taken the time to enlarge themselves to reach the flesh allowing the attack to be charged.
That was it! The light circles. In order to beat the creature they had to destroy the three recharge circles.
But how? The two punks didn't have their weapons on them and judging from their actions they didn't know a thing about magic either.
From the corner of his eye, Jecht could make out the ball the three had played with. It must have been transported with them.
Was that the answer?
Jecht growled, bubbles bursting from his mouth as he banged his chest
He motioned the two to look at the ball then at the monster's weakness. The boys got it, confused why Jecht would help them but they supposed he was as much in the ditch as they were.
The three swam as fast as they could. The nightmare tried to tackle and eat the three. It wasn't easy, but the three players were able to dodge the monster's assaults.
The ball was in Dragon's grip. The three nodded as they reached higher altitude, reaching the monster's eye view.
Dragon fisted the ball with a surge of might into the first circle, breaking the recharge. The flesh circle was fried, and the monster screamed with agony.
Albus caught the ball. With strong coordination he had gained from his archery, he swam directly in front of the circle and headbutted the ball straight into the middle of it.
Jecht finally got the ball. He swam higher behind the monster. Slowly, he circled into his position. After a few seconds, he had built up the momentum and was spinning like a hurricane.
He stopped like a rock and kicked the ball like his leg was Thor's hammer. The power, the strength, the rush.
Dragon could have sworn he felt the water quiver from the shock.
The ball smashed the last circle then right through the Nightmare's hard-shell, right through its flesh and out of it. It was as if Jecht was a human shotgun.
The monster screamed in pain as electricity was coating the foul creature.
Light embodied the creature whole as light once again engulfed the three players.
As the light died down, the three players could feel their feet make contact with the ground. It was strange to feel gravity take its hold of them once again compared to the flowing motion they had felt mere seconds before.
The camp (well, if you could call it that now) was nothing more than a pile of ruins. Tents had been burnt down and broke, any treasures that were stored had been stolen, and there was not a Dream Eater in sight.
Dragon sighed with relief. He wasn't happy with the destruction before him nor would he ever condone such a sight. Though in his heart he could not help but feel he and Albus had checked one problem off from their list.
Jecht examined the destruction before his eyes. He ruffled his shaggy hair with a chuckle. "Well, I guess this dump turned into, well, a dump."
"What are you going to do?" Albus asked him.
"Word of advice, kid; never waste your time in a deadend hack like this place. Your heart will stop beating before you even know the dumb thing did," Jecht berated casually.
"I'm not done!"
The three turned to the rubble of Doofenshmirtz's box to see the man himself come out of it. He looked terrible. Clothes torn, face dirty, and his hair had burned off. Even some teeth were missing from the lunatic.
"I will get my revenge against you two." He pointed at Dragon and Albus angrily. "I don't know how, I don't know when, but I will reek a terrible vengeance throughout your lives. You will need one eye open when you sleep, check if your food is not poisoned, see if your loved ones aren't booby trapped..." He trailed off as a very ticked off Jecht approached him.
Jecht seriously had enough of dealing with this idiot. Jecht crossed his arms and said one. Simple word. "Mommy."
Doofenshmirtz's threats came to a full stop. It wasn't long before tears swelled up in his eye, causing him to break down like a little school boy. With the amount of water coming out of him, he could have built his own water park.
Jecht just laughed at the idiot's expense. "Well, I just got you two off the hook."
"Why?" asked Dragon crossly. "When we were captured, you were acting like such a sadist."
"That's who I am, kid," Jecht answered honestly. "Problem with you is that you're too stuck up to accept jerks like me exist."
"Trust me, Jecht. If I wanted to tolerate a guy like you, I would have hang out around a certain blond in Twilight Town."
Jecht scoffed. "Stop with the honorable, secluded from the world act. Dude, I get it. You're shy and you got high standards for yourself. That act would have only worked four years ago but now the whole humble good guy look just gets on people's nerves and makes you look more like a conservative tool than a kid who wants to grow.
"Problem is, kid, you're not willing to get angry. I get that you're worried that one outburst will get you dumped by your new buddies. Get angry when you need to be to show some backbone, but overdo it like you did with the kid then you'll just be a weirdo that guys and gals will want to keep away from you. It's not a crime to get peeved. Just control it when you need to."
Dragon looked down, not out of pity but to look at Albus. Dragon couldn't remembered the last time he gotten so peeved like he did with Albus.
The last guy to do that to him was, well, Seifer. The clashes he and him had as kids were the most aggravating moments of his life. He was a kid and he did have the odd moment where he would scream and shout, but he could never properly put it into words how he felt.
Sometimes the mental processing would go frizzy which would lead him to say something out of line that would make easily the bad guy.
It just reminded him of how socially awkward he was.
"And you runt." Jecht pointed to Albus who gulped.
"You got a sense of humor. Problem is you got no clue how to be funny. Yeah, we all did the tree joke, but after a while it just gets boring. That ain't funny, kid. That's just a friend repellent. No wonder the shy nerd lost it."
Albus twitched his fingers. "You're right."
Dragon raised an eyebrow at his young companion.
"I get my jokes are at my friends' expense and I get that I can over do it. Problem is, I'm lonely. Dragon is the first real friend I ever had. He actually is the first closet thing I had to a friend I ever had."
Albus twiddled his fingers. "I guess the reason I made those stupid jokes about him and Kyra was because people want to be friends with the positive guy. I guess I overdid it with the jokes. I was worried about losing my friend I went a little overboard to keep him."
"But..." Jecht added.
Albus breathed in. "It's not right to see my friends as my property. Dragon didn't need to be teased so much, especially when he was worried for his friend and I didn't make matters any better for him. I guess I was being a insecure twit when I really should have been more gentle and say what Dragon needed to hear to feel calmer, not more agitated. "
Albus heard Dragon say his apology, the whisper soft as if he was a ghost.
"I'm the older one, I should have been more gentle to you. Shouldn't have lost it like that or say those things to you. It wasn't right and it was stupid. I let my worrying get to me and I took it out on you."
"No." Albus walked up to Dragon and stood in front of him. "I didn't understand how worried you were. I should have been more thoughtful or at least think about the situation more."
"No, I'm sorry," Dragon answered back.
"No, I am."
"I am times ten." Albus quipped.
"Okay, enough!" Jecht growled. "Tch, I am tired of you losers."
He whistled through his fingers and in a puff of smoke, a rhino-like spirit dream eater appeared before them with sky blue and yellow colours. Steel Slayer and Albus's bow and arrow were attached to it sides.
"Drill Sye will take you two where you want to go." Jecht smiled as he patted his Dream Eater on the back.
"How do you know where we want to go?" Questioned Albus.
"Drayage, right? That's an island. Where there is an island that means water. So in order to find water, you need to get to the beach. To get to the beach, you need a dream eater to take you there because you have no chance of finding it yourself."
Dragon and Albus put two and two together and nodded. In a strange way it made too much sense and going back on the yorkshire roads would just put them back into a never ending circle. Might as well take the chance.
Dragon helped Albus onto Drill Sye, but before he went on himself he turned to Jecht.
"Why are you helping us?"
Jecht shrugged. "Eh, I don't know. I guess I felt bad for you dummies. That, and the boss screwed me over."
"How did you know we wanted to go to Drayage?" He surmised.
"Well, I guess I have a soft spot for sleeping beauties who are being devoured by Nightmares."
Dragon's eyes widened. "You? You know? How?"
"When you and the kid came something in me just jump started. I don't know how, but I just knew what I was and what this world really was and what's causing it to exist." Jecht explained.
"Don't be a cry baby, kid," Jecht shot down. "I'm still me whatever happens."
"You do know what will happen to you when Kyra wakes up?" Dragon had to ask, he wish he didn't have to but he felt like he owed this teen some kind of thank you even if it was a cruel one.
"Yeah, I do," Jecht answered back as if it was the most normal question you could ask another person.
"And you are fine with that?"
"Kid, we're all fleeting dreams. I am a dream, so what? Doesn't mean I have to be sad about it. Got way, way better things to do than to be a crybaby about it."
He grabbed Dragon and forced him on the Dream Eater. "Get going. You're wasting time." Once Dragon was mounted on the spirit, Jecht slapped its hindquarters for it to go.
Dragon didn't have a moment to answer back to Jecht as the spirit took off, leaving the Blitzball player behind until the samurai couldn't see him anymore.
Dragon turned his attention to Albus, who sat up in the front. "So, we good?" Dragon asked.
Albus smiled. "Of course we're good." He offered Dragon a fistbump.
Dragon smiled as he returned it.
The happiness was short lived as he saw his acorn necklace glowing purple. "Wait, this happened before."
A shadow of a bird sweeped over them.
"ALBUS, WE'RE IN DANGER!"
It was too late. From the ground, thorns jumped out and trapped the three inside. Their spirit panicked but Albus was able to calm the rhino down.
A raven flew out of nowhere and landed on one of the cage's branches.
"YOU!" Dragon accused, pointing. "You're the bird who ambushed me."
The raven just chuckled evilly at the samurai's expense.
Dragon looked at the raven's appearance more closely than he did the first time. It reminded him of some things Kyra told him about her past, more specifically about a certain evil witch.
"You're her pet, aren't you? Maleficent's pet, Diablo?!" Dragon accused.
The raven just nodded cheekily.
"She did this, didn't she? She was the one who put Kyra into this mess. Let her go! She doesn't deserve this, you monster."
Diablo eyed the three closely than he had done before. His horrible smile sent chills down the three as if he was planning to peck their souls. Just seeing his strange eyes up close was horrifying enough.
"Now, why on earth would I do that?" Diablo asked.
To Be continued