Notes: Okay, this is my third Kingdom Hearts fic, and I've decided to try a pairing type that I don't think anyone's ever tried to pull off with Riku. The girl's personality is going to be one that I don't think anyone's ever tried with Riku, so their relationship may be a bit more romantic and a bit less funny than some more flamboyant OCs that good old Riku's been paired up with!

On with the disclaimer, and THEN on with the story!

Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts but I do own my own characters, so no stealing!

"Kairi…" Sora moaned as the auburn haired princess of heart dragged both him and Riku through the various clothing stores of the town on the Destiny Islands, or "Destiny Town", as the three liked to call it. They were currently in the unofficial market district; it was where most of the stores and peddlers were. Because of the tropical temperatures on the chain of islands, building ANYTHING was an arduous task, so it was actually a common practice for people to use carts to show off their good to potential buyers. . Kairi had been like this ever since they had gotten back home after defeating Xemnas, she'd adamantly refused to let either of the boys out of her sight…especially Sora! "Do we really have to do this?"

She abruptly spun around in the middle of the dirt road that ran through the small town, completely ignoring the fact that she nearly hit several innocent bystanders in the process. "Yes we really have to do this, you two have been away for two years, and none of your clothes fit you!" Kairi put her hands on her hips as Sora quailed before her. While Kairi could be quite formidable when she was worked up over something, everything she did seemed to impact Sora more than it did anyone else. "Besides," she continued as a slight grin crept across her face. "I thought you guys enjoyed hanging out with me!"

"We do…," Riku gruffly replied matter of factly. "But this isn't "hanging out", this is shopping for clothes, there's a big difference!" Riku crossed his arms as a hint of a scowl etched itself across his lips. They had been putting up with people being over-protective of him and Sora for the past three weeks now! Their own parents had nearly forced all three teenagers into having therapy after they explained just where they had been all this time. It was only when they showed them their keyblades that their parents called off the appointment and instead resorted to keeping an eye on their children almost twenty four seven!

The trio's parents had only now stopped trying to ruthlessly keep track of them, and now, Kairi was doing the exact same thing to Sora and Riku! "You've been hounding us for the past few days; you really should lighten up, right, Sora?" The brunette took a subconscious step back as his two best friends turned their attention to him, both somehow expecting him to chose their side in the matter. While he was more inclined to agree with Kairi for…personal reasons (if you can call having a crush the size of the death star on her "personal reasons"), Kairi's constant vigilance was getting on his nerves, even considering how much he enjoyed her company!

"Er, well…" Sora was desperately trying to delay having to answer and choose a side as long as he could. He wanted to make both of his friends happy, not just start a fight between them. "You have been a little harsh on us, Kairi…" Sora looked down and began to stir up the dirt on the ground with his foot. He couldn't even look at Kairi as he said this; he could practically feel her eyes boring into him!

Suddenly, Kairi, out of all the things Sora had expected her to do, started giggling. "I…guess you're right…" she admitted after she had calmed down. "I'm sorry…I've just been worried about you two…" Riku grunted as he uncrossed his arms.

"Yeah, we know," He said, answering for both him and Sora, who still seemed to be in disbelief that Kairi hadn't reacted in a more negative fashion. "But don't worry, we're not leaving any time soon!"

"Yeah!" Sora added cheerfully as he put on one of his infamous "Sora smiles" and placed his hands behind his head. "We promised that we'd be together, and I'm gonna' stick with you to the end, Kairi!" The princess of heart smiled and nodded at Sora, some of his optimism having brushed off him and onto her. It was amazing how Sora could have that kind of effect on her, changing her from worried to cheerful and optimistic in mere seconds.

"You're right, nothing's going to separate us ever again!" she said as she held up her fist in a determined manner. "…But, you guys are still going to have to get some new clothes unless you intend to wear those for the rest of your lives…" Both boys groaned out loud when Kairi said this, they had both been hoping that their friendship speech would make her forget about dragging them around town in search of clothes. "Hey, c'mon, I'll make it up to you! We can go to the recreation island after we're through!"

"Then what are we waiting for?!" Sora abruptly exclaimed as he seized Kairi's hand in his and ran towards the closest store he could see. The keyblade master could act truly childish at time…but that was what had endeared him so much to his friends! That and his borderline mindless optimism.

"Sora!" Kairi exclaimed as she was practically dragged along. Her voice betrayed her true feelings, though; it was full of cheer and not the slightest hint of rebuke. "Calm down!" As quickly as he had grabbed her and run off, the keyblade master stopped, released her hand, and turned around to face Kairi, his facial expression was similar to the one a puppy give its owner when it knows that it's in trouble.

"Kairi, I'm-," Sora was interrupted when the princess of heart burst out laughing.

"S-sora, your face!" Kairi was barely able to stand as Sora looked at her with confusion before a smile crept out across his face. Just seeing Kairi laugh made him happy! After a few seconds of laughing, Kairi quieted down. "Wait…where's Riku?!" Sora suddenly jerked up and looked around behind him. While he was running pretty fast, there was no way that Riku could have possibly lost sight of he and Kairi unless he wasn't trying to catch up with them…

"I can't believe him!" Kairi pouted as she angrily put her hands on her hips. "He just ditched us!"

"Well…I'm still here!" Sora put on another goofy smile as he placed his hands behind his head. Kairi smiled as he did this, Sora really was one of a kind. Under almost all circumstances he was able to be optimistic, even cheerful. His antics simply caused his cheer to rub off on others and make everyone around him share in his optimism, even Riku was no exception to that!

"Yeah, well, I guess we'll just have to get back at Riku later…" a smirk crept across Kairi's face as some plot of some sort began to take shape in her mind.

"W-wait, you mean that we're going shopping…alone…together?!" Sora asked flabbergasted as a blush became visible across his face. A year ago he probably wouldn't have given spending time alone with Kairi a second thought, but now…

He had seen that Kairi had finished his drawing of him and her sharing a paopu in the secret place. When he first saw it, he was just barely able to stop himself from doing back flips, handstands, and God knows what other kinds of ways of showing his joy, but now, he couldn't help but feel incredibly nervous around Kairi, especially if he was alone with her.

"Sora, are you feeling well?" Kairi asked concernedly, completely ignoring Sora's question. "Your face is red…," at this, she placed her hand on his forehead in an attempt to gauge his temperature. Sora could feel even more heat rise to his cheeks as she did this. The fact that "butterflies" were rising up in his stomach did little to help him as he struggled to not do something that would make him look like an idiot.

"Er, I-I'm fine!" Sora exclaimed in a way that didn't exactly put Kairi at ease. Why did God just HAVE to make Kairi so angelic? He couldn't even stand having her touch his forehead to make sure that he was alright without internally falling apart. Sora really needed to work on that…sure; he could act "normally" around Kairi if they were on some kind of adventure or in a life or death situation, but the odds of something like that happening were one in a million!

The letter they had gotten from the king strengthened Sora's belief in that.


Riku and Kairi both flanked Sora as they began to gaze down at the letter the king had sent them. To say they were curious about its contents would be a candidate for understatement of the century!

Dear Sora, Kairi, and Riku

I hope you fellas get this, sending notes in between worlds like this is tricky business! Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you for all that you guys have done and gone through, but I also want to warn you guys to stay on guard. I don't know if Maleficent and Pete survived when those heartless started swarming them, but if they did, they could both cause a lot of trouble!

Maleficent did promise that she would try to get revenge on you after organization thirteen was defeated, and I wouldn't put it past her to try and use the people you care about to get at you, she knows that she can't beat any of you in a direct fight!

Sora grinned a bit as he read this. During the week that the letter had taken to arrive on the Destiny Islands. Kairi had convinced both Sora and Riku to help train her in using her own keyblade, which she had yet to name. The princess of heart had been making rapid progress too, between Sora and Riku being good teachers and her ability to learn quickly, she was quickly rivaling them in terms of swordsmanship, even if she was somewhat lacking in the experience department. Still, if everything was quieting down, she wouldn't need the combat and magic lessons that Sora and Riku had given her, though only Sora was able to show her how to use magic since Riku relied on dark aura attacks rather than any kind of spell.

I don't want to worry any of you, but please be careful. The darkness may not be inherently evil, but there are plenty of people who would be more than happy to manipulate the heartless's instincts for their own gain…

Anyway, I'm taking Donald and Goofy with me to see if Maleficent and Pete survived, so don't worry about being dragged off anywhere. Just enjoy the time you have now, but remember to watch your backs!

From, Mickey

P.S. Minnie says hi!

"Well that's just great!" Riku muttered, clearly upset. "It hasn't been one month since we beat Xemnas, and some out there still wants to kill us!"

"Hey, the letter said that Pete and Maleficent probably didn't survive!" Sora chipped in optimistically as he folded up the letter and put it into one of the pockets of the magic clothes the three fairies had given him, the ones that he still wore everyday since he had gotten back from his last adventure. Obviously, he had to wash them A LOT more often than any other set of clothes that he ever had had….

"Sora's right, you shouldn't be so negative, Riku!" a certain princess of heart commented as she took several steps back so that she wasn't uncomfortably close to either of her to friends. Riku simply grunted in reply as he began to stalk off the islet that was his favorite training spot on the island.

"Figures that you'd take his side…"

"What'd you just say?!" Kairi demanded as she summoned her keyblade. She hadn't been able to hear Riku's accusation since he'd muttered it underneath his breath. Riku rolled his eyes and yelled "Nothing!" back to Kairi as he began to think come up with a list of places that he could brood without someone calling him an "emo boy". If Sora and Kairi wouldn't take any possible threats seriously, he would!

"You really shouldn't use it like that…" Sora stated in a careful manner, not wanting to get on Kairi's bad side. She just shrugged in reply as her keyblade vanished.

"Well it's not like I'm going to be able to use it for anything else anytime soon!"

"If you say so…" Kairi's words snapped Sora out of his little trip down memory lane. "But if you start to feel bad or anything, just tell me, okay…I don't want anything bad to happen to you because of me…" Kairi's view shifted form Sora to the ground, her choice of words was…embarrassing!

"Oh…uh…hey, c'mon!" Sora beamed happily as his blush began to fade away. He put his hands on Kairi shoulders, causing her head to jerk up in surprise so that she was looking straight into his face. "I'm fine, alright; nothing bad's going to happen!"

"Um, Sora…" Kairi shifted somewhat uncomfortably once Sora's proximity to her face became clear…not to mention that his hands were on her bare shoulders! The brunnetee tilted his head sideways in confusion before Kairi could literally see his eyes widen in a span of several seconds. He immediately detached his hands from her shoulders jumped back.

"AH! Kairi I…uh…I um…you…er…well…GAH!" to say that the keyblade master was freaking out would be an understatement. "…I'm sorry…" Sora finally seemed to have calmed down after almost ten seconds of his panicked expressions. To his immense surprise, he heard Kairi, of all things, giggling. Confused, Sora looked up at her.

"I-it's alright Sora…" Kairi said as the last of her giggles worked their way out of her system. "Don't worry about it!" Sora nodded and gave a shaky smile in response, there was something haunting him in the back of his head: was Kairi blushing? Her face did look just tiny bit flushed…though, that could have easily been the work of both the sun and her laughter. "So, are you ready?"

"Yeah, let's go!" as the two rushed off to get Kairi's shopping done, in Sora's case so that he and her could go to the recreation island after the trip was over, neither were aware that they were being watched by a certain smirking, silver haired friend of theirs, who was hiding in the shadows of one of the nearby buildings.

"Have fun you two…"

Riku was barely able to fight off the urge to scowl as he walked through the unofficial market district of Destiny Town. His improvised plan to get Sora and Kairi to spend some time alone with each other had gone along perfectly…except for one small detail…

He was bored out of his mind about now.

It was too easy to simply duck into a crowd of shoppers every time he had seen the pair during their trip, and even that mild source of excitement had been taken away from Riku. Sora and Kairi's little shopping trip was over, they had already left to drop off some of the bags that Sora had volunteered to carry for Kairi (and Riku knew exactly why Sora always acted so gentlemanly around her…) before they presumably ran off to go on their little island trip.

'Damn it Sora…you better tell her how you feel soon…' While Riku didn't consider himself to really be a matchmaker, Sora and Kairi weren't about to get anywhere with each other unless he took some kind of action. Neither seemed to be able to summon the will to actually confess their feelings, it was almost as frustrating to Riku as it must have been to them, possibly even more so! He seriously wouldn't be able to live with himself unless he tried to get them to fess up to the best of his ability.

How could he call himself Sora and Kairi's friend if he just stood on the side lines while they tried to sort out their emotions! Still, that didn't change the fact that Riku had absolutely nothing to do now that they had run off. He couldn't go to the recreation island without the risk of spoiling Sora and Kairi's time together, and he couldn't just go back to his house and lay around all day, it was against his principles and it would be even more boring that blindly wondering the market district like he was now!

Out of boredom, Riku began kicking a small pebble that happened to be on the ground in front of him. The silver haired teenager wasn't really paying attention to where he was walking as he glumly trudged along, kicking the said pebble as he went. It wasn't until someone bumped into him, knocking both him and the said person right onto the ground.

"Oh, I'm so sorry!" the girl, for the voice was feminine, cried out as two, fairly large brown paper bags fell to the ground along with Riku and her. The keyblade master grunted as he shifted his weight and twisted in such a way that he was able to stop himself from hitting the ground, and was able to regain his footing almost instantly.

As he stood up straight, he looked at the girl he had accidentally run into, mildly surprised at her appearance even though she had yet to look up or recover from her fall. She was dressed in a plain purple T-shirt, some non-descript shorts, and a pair of sneaker. Riku would have dismissed her as just a random person from the town, but for one reason.

She had white hair that reached past her shoulder by only an inch. While Riku didn't associate himself with every girl on the island, regardless of how many of them harbored crushes of varying degrees of secrecy on him, he was fairly certain that there were no white-haired girls on this world, especially considering that she looked to be his age. While he had been gone for a year, just like Sora, the odds of an exchange student coming during that time seemed to be quite remote…

Riku extended his hand towards her for her to take so that eh could help her up. As much as he hated to admit it, he was the one who had run into her because of his boredom, her apology and overall demeanor of politeness stirred up a pang of guilt in his chest.

"Hm? Oh, thank you, sir," The white haired teenager took his hand and got to her feet as he pulled her up off the ground, only to suddenly freeze when she saw Riku's face. He could almost see her blue eyes widen as an expression that Riku couldn't quite place made itself visible across her face. It seemed to be surprise mixed with…something else.

"Are you alright?" Riku asked, both concerned and a little disturbed by her reaction to him.

"Uh, y-yes!" the girl exclaimed nervously as she bent down and quickly picked up the tow bags that she had dropped in a hasty manner. "I have to go now, I'm in a hurry!" and without any further warning, she sprinted past Riku, nearly running into him a second time. The keyblade master stood there, confused for several seconds before he turned around, mentally shrugging. He would never understand girls…

Just as he was about to forget that the incident ever happened, his foot came down on something, causing a loud "crunch" sound to be made. Out of curiosity, he looked down to see that he had stepped onto a pack of boilable noodles. He reached down and picked it up, along with several more near it. The girl who he ran into must have accidentally dropped them when she fell.

"Hey, wait!" Riku called out in the direction that she had run off in. He then dashed off, intending to find her so that he could return the food she had bought, Riku was no gentleman, but he did have a set of unshakable morals! Still, he ran all the way out of town, and didn't see the slightest hint of the strange girl. "Damn…" he muttered to himself as he glanced down at the noodles. From the looks of things, he'd have to wait until later to find the strange teenage girl.

"Great, I've gone from hero to errand boy in just two weeks!" Riku moaned to himself as he put the noodles in his pocket for the sake on convenience. "…Well, at least it'll give me something to do…,"

While the keyblade masters were all occupied with their own problems, a certain white-haired sixteen year old was walking through the woods of one of the smaller and uninhabited islands among the chain that formed The Destiny Islands. She continued walking for about a minute before she came to a medium sized clearing.

In it, was a ship that was clearly meant for traveling between worlds. It was fairly generic, a rectangular shape with a cockpit at the front and four engines to propel it through space. The ship was fairly large, though not big enough to be spotted by anyone who happened to be passing by.

The girl wore a slight smile as she walked up a loading ramp and up to a metal door on the side of the ship. Placing one of the two grocery bags down on the ground, she reached out with her free hand and placed it against a small metal panel that was right next to the door. A few seconds later, an audible click rang out as the door swished open. The white-haired teenager picked up the bag that she had placed on the ground and entered the ship.

"Brother, I'm back!" The interior of the room was she was in was plain and metallic, only a few pieces of furniture, a table and four chairs, decorated it. Almost as soon as she had called, the girl's brother, who actually looked to be sixteen, the same age as his sister and Riku, appeared through one of the doors that led deeper into the ship.

He wore a black cap on his head that failed to conceal the silver hair that seemed to stream from it, testifying to his laziness. His hair was actually darker than Riku's though, it was almost gray! He wore a black jacket that was tattered around the edges as though someone had tried to trim them with a pair of scissors only to fail miserably and had sleeves that only reached down to his elbows. Underneath that, a white T-shirt was visible, for the jacket itself was unbuttoned. A pair of blue jeans and a pair of black, fingerless gloves completed the teenager's image of some kind of laid-back slacker…who happened to posses a keen sense of humor!

"Oh, hey, Maria!" he greeted with a casual wave as the white haired girl placed her groceries on the table. "Just out of curiosity, why do you have to call me "brother"? Can't you just call me "Dingo"? That's kinda my name y'know!" Maria smiled a bit as she looked up from the table and at her brother.

"I'm the one who bought the food we needed, so I think that means I can call you what I want…brother," Dingo held his hands up in mock defeat as he walked up to the table an began to casually inspect the contents of the two brown grocery bags.

"So, anything of interest happen in that town?" Maria was visibly caught off guard, though only for a second. Her ability to maintain her composure under nearly all circumstances was something that she took pride in.

"…No…nothing at all…" Dingo looked up from the groceries with a grin.

"The noodles you always get aren't here…something happened…" Maria mentally cursed herself. Dingo was a hell of a lot more intelligent than most people gave him credit for…that is, until it was too late for them to do anything about it!

"Um, well…brother, there's something I need to talk to you about, there was this boy in town…" Dingo's gave way to a round of laughs as he held his stomach whilehe slapped his knee.

"Oh my God! You, talking about a guy?! Ahahaha, that's the funniest thing ever, next to your choice of clothes for today, you really should hurry up and wash your normal outfit! He must be a heck of a dude to make you forget to buy the noodles…" Maria would have blushed if it wasn't for the fact that she had better control over herself than most…and if the situation wasn't as serious.

"I must have dropped them when he ran into me…brother, the "dude", as you called him, looked almost exactly like…like…you-know-who…," Instantly Dingo's laughter ceased as he stared at his sister in disbelief. "Yes…I was wondering if, well…maybe…," Dingo silenced her with a casual wave of his hand.

"No worries, sis! I've got plenty of time left!" Maria eyed him with suspicion, despite his cheerfulness. "Oh…you want proof?" When his sister nodded, Dingo sighed and took off the fingerless glove on his right hand, exposing a marking on his palm. It was the symbol of the nobodies, except that it was split down the middle and half of it was black while the other half was gold. It looked almost like a tattoo, and yet, it was clearly etched into his skin. Dingo seemed to concentrate and small sentence made of red letters hovered forth from the symbol on his hand.

'You will die in seven days!' was what the almost holographic sentence said.

"Very funny, Dingo…," Maria said, almost in a hostile tone despite her customary politeness. "Now, how much time do you REALLY have left?" Dingo grinned sheepishly as he shrugged and waved away his prank-message. This time, an almost holographic timer counting down from thirty days, down to the last second, materialized, hovering above the symbol on his hand.

"See, plenty of time!" Maria, however, seemed less optimistic.

"Brother, it's your choice…you're the one who'll die if that timer runs out…well, you and Ale-," She was again silenced by a wave of Dingo's hand, though he was more violent this time. "…I'm sorry…I shouldn't have brought what happened up…"

"It's alright…" Dingo grinned weakly in an attempt to put on his façade of being an unconcerned jester once more. "I won't let either of us die…she'll be fine, just like I promised after I…got this thing…," he raised his right hand to show the symbol on it in order to illustrate his point. "Now, you can go back to town tomorrow to see that boy of yours…just make sure you don't forget to bring back the noodles!"

"Brother…." Maria was clearly touched, and yet regretful that she had talked Dingo into letting her go back in an attempt to see Riku just once more before they had to leave. "He only looks like…you-know-who…he isn't actually him…"

"Well then, you're still going to have to go back and get those noodles, because I won't be driving the ship until I get my ramen! Besides, all I have to do to get some more time is kill some nobodies! I mean, what's the worst that can happen? The whole town getting attacked by the wicked witch of the west?!"

Maria allowed herself to chuckle at her brother's joke. While she couldn't quite understand her need to see that boy that looked almost exactly like…him..., Ding seemed to understand it perfectly. Still, that was the least of her worries, she couldn't shake the feeling that something terrible was going to happen because of her and Dingo's decision…and her hunches were usually correct, for better or for worse!

Okay, sorry about the lack of action, but I hope the fluff kept you satisfied! Anyway, please tell me what you think about this story so far. I'm not quite sure if it's on par with my other story, but the reviews will be appreciated all the same!

Just tell me what you think about it so far, from how I've been handling Sora and Kairi's relationship, to the personalities of my two OCs!