AUTHOR'S NOTE: Just an idea I had a few days ago when replaying Chain of Memories. Hope you enjoy! Please review to let me know what you think!
DISCLAIMER: Kingdom Hearts is owned by Square Enix.
Naminé finished up her drawing and sat back in her chair, letting out a quiet sigh. As a general rule, whatever she drew ended up happening in real life. But this one? No chance. She could never let Marluxia see this drawing; he would get so angry knowing that she had even thought about this.
She looked around her small room deep within Castle Oblivion. It was bare other than the chair she was sitting in and a plain bed in the corner, white just like the walls, floor and ceiling. She didn't even have a table to keep her drawing pad on when she wasn't using it; it stayed on her bed unless she was sleeping, and if she was it rested on her chair. The pencils stayed with it. Marluxia said that someone like her didn't deserve to have any possessions. He said that she was lucky to have her drawing pad, even though Naminé was very aware that she was only allowed it so she could carry out the Organization's plans.
She flicked back through her other drawings, remembering how she had slowly but surely changed Sora's memories, and subsequently those of Donald and Goofy. It started out with her inserting herself into his memories of him and his friends - Riku and Kairi - back on his island home. Then, on Marluxia's command, she slowly started to replace Sora's memories of Kairi with false memories of herself, until Sora now thought that Naminé was his childhood friend rather than the girl who really was.
Naminé sighed again as she shut the book over. She did feel bad about what she was doing. From everything she knew, Kairi was lovely. Sora clearly cared about her a lot. Everything that he had been through up to this point had been for her.
But now, Sora cared about her instead. Naminé knew it wasn't real. She knew that the only reason he thought he liked her was because she had been messing with his memories.
But part of her didn't care.
She had never had anybody care about her. From ever since she could remember it had always been Marluxia, Larxene and the others just telling her what to do. She was invaluable to their plan, but nobody actually cared about her as a person. She had never experienced friendship.
But with Sora, she had a chance to feel wanted. A chance for somebody to care for her and about her. And that was all that Naminé really wanted. She knew she was somewhat protected in Castle Oblivion, but not in the same way as a friend would protect her. Larxene was known to have hit her before when she was in one of her moods, and it wasn't unusual for Vexen to forget to bring her her food because he was too busy working on his Replica Program. She was just a tool to them. But with Sora, she could feel like a real person. She could feel whole...
Naimné shook her head at these thoughts before standing up. She placed her notebook and pencils down on the chair, walked over to her bed and let herself fall on top of it. She remained there, lost in thought for a few minutes, until there was a sharp knock on her door.
There were two doors leading into her room. One was a door which lead from one of the rooms the Orgainzation were using to plan Sora's demise. The other was a secret door which could be accessed from one of the main halls of the castle. Naminé had only recently discovered it. It looked like it was just part of the wall, unless you looked at it from an angle. If you did you could see that a section of the wall was a few millimetres off of the ground. Naminé had discovered that this led out into a corridor of the castle.
When she had first discovered it, she was elated, thinking she could escape. But just as she was considering it, Axel had walked into her room.
Axel was the only a Organization member who was ever remotely kind to her. Whenever Vexen did forget to bring her her food, Axel would always sneak into her room later on to give it to her. If he was there when Larxene hit her, or Marluxia said something particularly unkind, he would tell them to stop, and manage to distract them away from the small girl, and he'd give her a sympathetic smile when nobody else was looking.
When Axel had seen the hidden door, he'd smiled, but told Naminé not to leave just yet. He'd said that she should keep this a secret from Marluxia and the others, and when the right time came, then she could use it as an escape route. Naminé had been all for running away right there and then, but she was very perceptive for a young girl. She could tell that Axel had alternative motives from those of the other Organization members at Castle Oblivion, and although she wasn't sure what they were, she was fairly certain that they didn't involve hurting her. Because of this she decided to do what Axel said, and had remained in Castle Oblivion, keeping the door a secret from Marluxia.
It was the graceful assassin who now entered her room, using the one door he knew about. Naminé quickly stood up of her bed, her eyes down, knowing that Marluxia liked to be shown respect as Lord of Castle Oblivion, even though he tended not to get any from the likes of Axel or Vexen.
Marluxia regarded Naminé before looking over at the chair where she had left her drawing pad. Naminé bit her lip. It was closed over, but if he decided for whatever reason to have a look through it, he would see the picture she had just drawn. Then she would be scolded, possibly by Larxene as well as Marluxia. And Larxene's scoldings always involved taunting and violence.
Thankfully, he turned his attention back to her. "What were you doing?" he asked.
"...Nothing Sir," she replied in a quiet voice.
"You must have been doing something," Marluxia pressed.
Naminé didn't say anything. She just kept her eyes on the floor and hoped that maybe she could blend into the wall with her white dress, fair hair and pale skin.
Suddenly there was the whirl of a dark corridor opening in her room. She didn't look up to see who emerged from it, but she knew the voice.
"Marluxia, I was looking for you. Zexion wants to speak to you. He found something interesting out about our...test subject."
Marluxia nodded. "Thank you, Axel."
Naminé glanced up to see that Axel was looking directly at her. He flashed her a smile as he left the room, which she just about managed to return. Marluxia followed him out, only turning to face Naminé when he was half way out the door.
"You've been doing a good job Naminé," he praised. "When we told Sora we had you captive here, he was very upset. It really is like he's known you forever."
Naminé dropped her gaze again, the guilt of what she had done washing over her. Marluxia saw this and smiled cruelly.
"And that little trick with changing the good-luck charm that that Kairi girl gave to him? Very nice," he smirked before he exited the room, closing the door behind him.
Naminé let herself fall back onto her bed and she buried her face in her flat pillow. How could she have done this? More to the point, how could she have convinced herself that this was okay?
She rolled herself over onto her side and stared that the hidden door. She could do it. She could run away. She could get out of this place and not have to do what Marluxia said ever again. But...
Everything came back down to him. He was, essentially, her reason for existing. She had wronged him. She had messed up his memories; taken apart the connections and rearranged them. To him, she was now Kairi. She was the one who he had found washed up on the beach with no recollection of her home. She was the one who he'd comforted when there had been scary storms on the islands. She had been the one with whom he had scribbled on the walls with at their secret place.
Only Naminé hadn't done any of those things. Kairi had. And Naminé didn't have any right to know about those things. They were private between Sora and Kairi. Naminé know knew about things that even Riku probably didn't know about.
And that wasn't right.
Naminé sat up, a new determination burning bright within her. She was going to do this. She would run away from here and find a away to help Sora. She would restore his memories to him. She would right these wrongs. She would put these chains of memories back together the way they were supposed to be.
Before she talked herself out of it she quickly walked over to the hidden door and pushed it open. Taking one last look back at the other door to her room, she stepped out into the corridor and closed the door behind her.
She took deep breaths as she looked around at the corridor. To her left there was a large door which would lead to stairs going further down the castle. To her right there was a flight of stairs leading up to another floor.
The hallways between rooms in the castle were huge, and this one was no exception. Naminé could practically hear her pulse racing with adrenaline. She just stood still, leaning against the hidden door. She had no idea what to do.
That's when she heard it.
Behind the door to her left.
Naminé froze in terror. If it was Marluxia or Larxene she would be beaten for trying to escape. She knew she should run back into her room, but she was so scared that she couldn't move.
The door opened.
Her breath hitched.
Sora entered the hallway.
Naminé could have sworn that her heart stopped in shock. She honestly hadn't expected to see Sora. She could have sworn that he was a lot further down the castle than here. Sora clearly hadn't expected to see her either.
"N...Naminé?" he choked out, his voice hoarse.
Naminé herself still couldn't move. Sora began to slowly walk over to her.
"Naminé, is...is that really you?" he murmured as if he could barely believe it.
When he eventually got to her he reached out and cupped his hand against her cheek. Without even thinking about it, Naminé brought her hand up and laid it over his. Sora's eyes, still wide with shock, now filled with tears and he pulled Naminé into a hug.
Sora was slightly taller than she was, so he was sobbing into Naminé's hair. She just stood there at first, unsure of how to react, but slowly she wrapped her arms around Sora just as he had done to her.
"I was so worried about you," Sora mumbled as he pulled back to look at Naimné properly. "When that guy told me that they had you captured...I was so scared."
"Don't worry, I'm fine!" Naminé found herself answering, again without even thinking about it.
She looked back at the door he'd come through, frowning in confusions. "Um...where are Donald and Goofy?" she asked.
Sora grumbled something under his breath before he answered. "We...fell out. I think they're trying to find their way out now."
"Oh..." Naminé said quietly, unsure of how to respond to that.
Something on Naminé's arm caught Sora's eye. He grabbed her arm and his eyes widened again.
"Is this...a bruise?" he asked, before looking back up into Naminé's blue eyes. "Did they do this? Did they hurt you?"
Naminé looked down at the ground, but nodded slowly.
Sora growled under his breath. "I won't let them get away with that," he promised, wrapping his arms around her again. Naminé's arms did the same automatically.
"I was so worried about you..." Sora murmured, moving one hand up to stroke her hair.
Naminé allowed herself to relax in Sora's arms, and she rested her forehead on his shoulder. She had never been held before. She had never had anybody worry about her before.
Naminé felt Sora take a deep breath and let it out slowly before he pulled back to look into her eyes. Naminé's arms dropped back down to her sides. Sora brought his hand down from her head to cup her cheek again. He gently stroked her cheek with his thumb.
Naminé was confused. The look in his eyes had changed. He now looked thoughtful, but determined. But as he started to lean in towards her, she understood.
Was he going to...?
Sora gently but firmly pressed his lips to hers.
Naminé's brain shorted out. Sora was kissing her...and before she knew it she was resting her hands on his chest and kissing him back.
Sora began to walk her backwards until she was pressed up against the wall. He ran one of his hands through her hair as he continued to kiss her, while she was now holding onto his shirt. Her eyes started to close over, but suddenly something shot through her head.
It shouldn't be her.
Deep down, Naminé knew that these feeling that Sora had weren't really for her. They were for Kairi. She wanted this so baldy; to love and be loved in return...but she had to stop this.
She ducked her head away from Sora and pushed him away, keeping her eyes down. Sora frowned.
"Naminé...what is it? What's wrong?" he asked, taking her hands in his.
Naminé swallowed before slowly pulling her hands away from his.
"I...I can't do this..." she murmured.
Sora's face changed to a guilty expression. "I...I'm really sorry. That was really sudden; I shouldn't have done that."
Naminé started to shake her head, realising that Sora didn't understand what she meant, but Sora didn't notice. He grabbed hold of one of her hands, smiling encouragingly.
"C'mon, let's get out of here," he said. "We can find a way back to the islands, find a way to get to Riku."
Before Naminé could say anything he reached into his pocket and pulled out the fake good-luck charm.
"When you gave me this, I promised to protect you," Sora 'remembered.' "So that's what I'm gonna do."
Sora started to walk towards the door he'd entered the room through, expecting Naminé to follow after him.
But she didn't. She stayed where she was and once again slipped her hand out of Sora's grasp.
Sora turned around, looking exasperated. "What're you doing Naminé? Come on!"
Naminé shook her head, still looking down. "I can't..."
"What do you mean you can't?" Sora cried.
Naminé couldn't hold it in anymore. Her head snapped up and she looked Sora straight in the eye.
"Because I'm not the one you want to protect! It's not really me; it's Kairi!" she burst out.
Sora frowned, stepping back slightly. "K...Kairi?"
Naminé now knew what she was going to do, and she walked up to Sora with a new found confidence.
"I want to be with you Sora," she told him. "Truly, I do. But it isn't my place. Kairi's the one who should be with you, not me."
Sora was still frowning, but he didn't say anything. Naminé reached out and placed her hands on either side of his head.
"I care about you Sora," she continued. "I've done things that I shouldn't have done to you. I've made you forget about one of your best friends. But I promise, I'm going to fix that. I'll fix everything, I swear."
Before Sora could say anything, Naminé send a powerful spell through his head from both her palms. He groaned slightly before he passed out and crumpled to the floor. Naminé held onto him and laid him down gently. She knelt next to him and brushed some hair off of his forehead.
The spell Naminé cast would wipe Sora's memories of the past few minutes. He wouldn't remember their conversation, or even seeing Naminé as he walked through that door. Naminé sighed softly. She so wished that she didn't have to do this...but she did. She cared about Sora so much that she knew she couldn't be selfish. He was meant to be with Kairi, not with her.
Naminé looked away from Sora back to the hidden door that led to her room. She took a deep breath before kissing Sora gently on the forehead, standing up and slipping back over to the door. She stepped back into her room and closed the door before her, but pressed her ear to it, knowing that the spell wouldn't knock Sora out for long and that he'd be awake again soon.
True enough, after only a few moments she heard Sora groaning.
"What...happened?" he muttered, his voice muffled through the thick door.
After another few minutes (where Naminé presumed Sora was trying to orientate himself) she heard footsteps, and then nothing. Taking a risk, Naminé pushed the door open again and looked out into the corridor. Sora was nowhere to be seen.
Naminé re-closed the door and leaned against it, before sinking to the floor. Resting her head on her knees she made a promise, to herself and to Sora.
"I will fix this," she murmured to herself. "I swear I'll fix you Sora. I'll make things right."
With new-found purpose, Naminé stood up and walked over to her chair, picking up her pad and pencils and turning to the back page. Sitting down, she began to draw three figures: Sora, Riku and Kairi, sitting together on the paopu fruit tree back on their island home.
Once she'd finished, she turned back to the picture she had drawn earlier. The picture of Sora kissing her. She smiled slightly before ripping the page out. She crumbled it up in her hand and muttered a charm under her breath. Opening her hand up, a small flame danced in her palm, turning the picture to ash.
The small smile stayed on Naminé's face as she watched the embers. She didn't need to dwell on the past. She knew what to do know.
She would play her part, but no longer in the Organization's plans; in Marluxia's plans.
But she knew that that kiss would stay with her forever. She laughed lightly.
"I hope Kairi won't be too angry..."
"Why would Kairi be angry?"
Naminé head jerked up and she quickly extinguished the flame as Axel walked in. She said nothing as Axel sat down on her bed.
He frowned. "You seem...different," he mused.
When Naminé still didn't say anything, Axel smiled. "You have a plan don't you?"
Naminé looked at him in confusion for a few moments before she nodded slowly. Axel stood up again, clapping her on the shoulder.
"Good luck," he said, before walking out of the room.
Naminé turned her head to watch him leave. He shot her a genuine smile and she smiled back.
She hoped she would be smiling a lot more often now.