Welcome to Kingdom Hearts: World Destiny! We are an AU Kingdom Hearts RP with no word count. World Destiny's story takes place post Dream Drop Distance, at which point we make considerable steps in our own story direction. Feel free to check out the Plot link to find out more!
All guests are welcome to drop in and say hi!
Nightfall: Chapter 2
Two years after the events of Dream Drop Distance, the Darkness became so great that it swallowed the worlds, locking them away within its merciless abyss.
Twilight Town, now covered in eternal night, stands as one of last Sanctuaries of Light. It is where players begin their journey.
Ever resourceful, the Moogles have created a safe place for refugees. They have charged the Denizens of Light with finding Castle Oblivion: it holds a key to the puzzle of the lost worlds.
But within the dark shadows of the sanctuary world a powerful dark force still looms, waiting to strike. Each survivor must choose whether to go to Castle Oblivion or stay behind to protect the world from the dragon that lurks in the shadows.
Traverse Town was a singular place, filled with castoffs from other Worlds. Buildings twisted every which way, with technologies both advanced and antique. There was an odd charm to the town along side a whisper of the ominous, for no matter how cheerful its inhabitants, no matter how steadfast and strong of heart they were, the very existence of Traverse Town implied the death and destruction of other Worlds.
In the middle of the square, one day, there dropped a mirror, or rather...the remains of a mirror. It was only a large, tall frame now, with the a gaping, black center, the entire glass sheet missing. It spanned about four feet in height and two and half in width. The frame was of solid gold, the metalwork twisting upon itself like a snake or the symbol of infinity. A small red gem glimmered on either side and upon closer inspection, it looked as though the glass must have broken into three parts and were now lost or scattered. Yet, it seemed to have some sort of life about it. One could almost hear the sound of something or someone rustling behind the frame, trying to break free and be heard.
Once more wandering the streets of Traverse Town, Zephyr found herself in an unfamiliar local. After working with the moogles nonstop for the past few days, they had dismissed her with the intent of giving her a day of rest, refusing to let her work and shooing her away when she declined and took up the anvil. As such, she was feeling restless and agitated. Blacksmithing was all she knew, and it distracted her from the missing lights of her Guardians that had always dwelt inside her heart.
She huffed, her breathe expelling in front of her in a frosty mist. Her hands sat in the pockets of her bomber jacket as she wandered aimlessly and without purpose. Still, heading back to Leo's apartment seemed like a poor idea, the small confines making her feel cramped and vulnerable, while the openness of the city streets were relaxing if not entirely safe. She felt it here, at once passing through the unmarked doors that led her to this strange new part of the city. Buildings were sparse, instead being replaced by tall trees that reminded Zephyr of the forest floor that she would often hunt for Guardians. The chill that settled over her did not seem to come from the wintry elements alone. There was something about this district, the silence and sparse lighting that seemed to set her nerves on edge. It was an odd feeling, to be at once comforted by nature and still feel the ominous chill that was so lacking in the First District. She had known its ilk in the Second and Third District, the danger that seemed to lurk around every corner, but here, in this new place, it was different. It was more raw.
Every once in a while she would catch movement out of the corner of her eye. Flashes of darkness, blurs of silver that dispersed when she turned her head. She hoped it was just her imagination, but the farther she traversed in this hostile territory the less at ease she felt. She wished Jispo were here. He would know if there was something to worry about. He was always more in tune to their surroundings than she was, serving as her eyes and providing that innate animal instinct that told one was in imminent danger. But then, she'd probably tell him to settle down and ignore it. Being amongst trees and nature for the first time in over a week was too exciting for her, when all she had known of this land were stones and snow.
Lost in her thoughts, the girl startled at the sudden clearing that lay before her. Streetlights were more numerous here, with tall opaque figures that littered the expansive courtyard. Approaching one, Zephyr put her hand at its base, squinting her eyes to get a good look at the glass statue. Her hand drew back, cold. Not glass then, but ice. How … fitting, she thought, her mouth curling into a frown. Standing on her toes, she peered up at the figure's face. A man wearing a scowl, with an open vest that betrayed his strong chest and chiseled abs. Zephyr drew her hand across the work of art, putting a damp finger in her mouth and contemplating its beauty. His hands were accented in icy flames, reminding her of the Fire Race back home. Settling back down on her heels, she turned and made her way to another figure.
She hesitated as her foot trod on some foreign object, then hissed a curse as she heard a crack. Stooping low, she gazed at what she had encountered. A large frame of some sort, with gilded edges and of an intricate design. Her hands brushed over the center, wondering what it might have held, or if it was instead meant for something, when her fingers encountered the indentation of a thin line. She traced it, finding it split at some point into two more lines. No matter which line she traced, from their central point they all led her to the gilded edge. How odd.
A wolf's howl split the air, causing Zephyr to pause long enough to lift her head and look about herself. Her feathers rustled in a nervous twitch, expecting something … an attack, or a feral canine presence … but when nothing more came she forced herself to ignore it, turning her attention back to the gilded frame. There was something more to this strange object, something faint, like a whisper of a forgotten memory. She had felt it when she had traced her fingers over the broken lines. Being in tune to her Guardians, Zephyr was familiar with the magic of alternate realms. There was something … or someone … residing here. There was no Gateway symbol, no way to center her thoughts, but despite it all she placed her left hand at the center of the split, closed her eyes, and focused.
Amelia kneeled down, picking up the tiny spur gear between her thumb and index finger and holding it close to her face. There were marks on the ground—paw prints, claws, things left behind in a vicious scuffle. The wolves, she guessed. And the only thing left behind by their prey was the gear and a spirit shard. They had done her job for her.
Served that stupid kleptomaniac Heartless right. It was the second time in the last two weeks that a Heartless had broken into the Gizmo Shop and made off with one of the gears. Not a vital part of the clock tower, mind you—all this one did was trigger one of the rising platforms, not the clock hands or the bell that announced the coming of every hour—but something as small as that would have been enough to drive her up the wall. It was enough to make her chase down the stupid Soldier all the way from the Second District to Zero.
Mia pocketed the gear and reached into her bag for her gem case. She had been running low on the gems: all she had was a bright shard and a power crystal, not that much in the long-run if she was ever in danger and needed to summon help. One shard didn't make much of a difference, but she supposed it made her feel a little safer. Especially here.
Out in the cold, surrounded by trees and flickering lamps that smelled faintly of gasoline, everything looked the same. Maybe it was just because she had always lived surrounded by buildings and roads, both of which were rather lacking in this part of town, but the Zero District felt alien. Out of place.
A wolf howled somewhere in the distance, the sound sending a shiver down her spine. Definitely not an area that she would go around summoning willy-nilly. The wolves hunted and destroyed any Heartless they found, and Mia was sure that they wouldn't hesitate to do the same with her look-alike summons. Something in her gut told her that she should leave.
She was about to turn around and head back when something in the distance caught her eye. It looked like a person at first. She changed course and started to make her way towards the figure, her footsteps light, her quarterstaff gripped in her hand. It was only when she was twenty feet away that she realized the trees gave way to a courtyard, and that the supposed person was just one of many statues that populated the clearing like gargoyles. There wasn't any particular consistency in the style of the statues; their appearances were varied, some tall, some short, some lean, some strong.
She looked around at the statues, wondering what they were doing there. It was only after a minute passed that she caught a glimpse of dark hair and white feathers between the statues and realized she wasn't alone.
Wolves had hearts too. And while Akela and Raksha had fought bravely against the darkness that came from the Man Village, in the end, their World was swallowed in darkness and they found themselves roaming the outskirts of an even stranger place where man's Red Flower did not flicker, but shone steady and yellow inside hollow moons. At the very least, they had ended up together. Now they howled in sorrow at a moonless, starless sky, mourning the ones they could not find and the bitter cold that gripped their hearts.
As for the mirror...physically, it did nothing. The object in itself was inanimate, broken, and dull. However, Zephyr was not wrong in her conjecture that there may be an alternate plane of reality connected to it. Indeed, she must have sensed it easily when she focused her mind to this purpose. Another realm, yes, but just as complex and rich as the one she stood in and every bit as difficult to navigate. There was life there, both evil and good, great and small, and one particular soul or spirit bound to the mirror frame, unable to break free from its sordid prison.
Zephyr opened her eyes, her breath frosting in thick mists that dispersed before her eyes. Her hand withdrew, a frown creasing her brow. Nothing had happened. But then, what had she expected? The indentations to glow a bright white like her Guardians' Gateway symbols? Some sensation of forging a link between realms, of bridging a gap to another world? She supposed that was foolish, tracing her fingers once more over the lines. Still, something had happened. She had felt … something … but what, she couldn't say. There was something there, she knew it. She felt like it was trying to communicate with her, trying to tell her some forbidden secret, but she had lost it as easily as trying to grasp smoke with her hands.
The statues lay forgotten in the courtyard, the wolves a distant thought that resided in the far reaches of her mind. The effort had been taxing, but she had to try again. Something was there. Settling on her haunches, Zephyr kneeled before the inanimate frame, ignoring the iciness of the snow that dampened her pants. With a deep breath, she placed both hands on the central point of the broken lines. Closing her eyes once more, Zephyr relaxed. Traverse Town was a distant place in her thoughts, far off and detached from her being.
This secret in the frame, she wanted to be a part of it. Reaching through her heart, Zephyr focused, putting forth far more effort than the tentative step she had made before. A light flickered and Zephyr grasped at it, using it as a beacon to hone her thoughts, to light this arcane object and open up whatever lay beyond the frame.
Mia froze for just a moment before she took control of her body back from her instincts. She slowly walked around the nearest icy statue, her footsteps soft—nearly silent in the snow. She watched the stranger crouch to the ground out of the corner of her eye but kept her distance. Twenty feet of space between them, maybe more. Something she learned from living in this world: you didn't want to startle anyone. There was no telling what kind of weapons or magic a seemingly harmless person (or not-person, as a matter of fact) could be hiding. Much less a person with... wings?
These things barely surprised her anymore, and there were better questions to ask than how or why. She supposed that there were many reasons why someone would be in this part of town—Mia herself was here, wasn't she?—and it really shouldn't have been cause for alarm. What people did was their own business, no need to ask for trouble. Spying could be as bad as startling. She should just go back to the Shop and replace that gear. Curl up under a blanket. Get a coffee or something.
She saw what the stranger was crouched over—something shiny and gold—and faltered, tilting her head and peering around a statue to get a better view.
Her legs were beginning to ache in the cold, but she told herself she just wanted to stay a few more seconds. For now, she didn't move. What is that?
His endless wandering through the snow filled wonderland had taken him across the many rooftops and alleyways, through crowds, past odd fountains, and now this. Blue hues scanned the area from the top of another roof, noting this area to be rather different from the one’s he’s encountered thus far. Something felt off, something that gripped the blonde’s mind in a vice-grip. There were statues of varying sizes and shapes here, which did not add up in the male’s mind. Statues were made to be openly displayed and viewed by the public, but here, while the area wasn’t closed off to the general public, this place was empty. Devoid of the huge throngs of people who’ve lost their world.
It’s been quite some time since the bandit’s world was swallowed alive by heartless, as Sora put it. Having been dumped unwillingly in this town had allowed the blonde to survey what’s now been his temporary home with a careful, yet curious eye. This place, while it seemed normal and cozy to some, and while it bore some relation to a certain aristocratic town called Treno in his world, there were a number of things here that stirred the unsettling feelings that swam through his head. Walking across the plated rooftops, Zidane kept his eyes and ears peeled, though honestly, the creepy serenity that this district possessed served to hinder his focus.
It didn’t take long for his traipsing to come to an end, for his cerulean hues fell upon someone, or something. While he could barely make out more a shadow from his vantage point, he knew that curiosity would get the better of him, despite the ominous thoughts that floated about. Steeling his body, he thought about it no further and after mentally ticking off the count of three, he planted his calves into the slanted rooftop and shoved off into the cold airs that comprised this world.
Despite what some may call to be an ‘suicidal leap’, Zidane found himself oddly at peace as gravity claimed his athletic frame. Stretching his hand out, gloved fingers wrapped themselves around a slippery wire that coursed from one side of the district to the other. From there, he simply swung himself to another wire that was strung on a lower altitude. Rinsing and repeating this simple method, he found himself landing at the top of one of many trees around the area. He could now make out the different figures on these statues, as well as the person who was practically on the ground. The genome tilted his head as he grasped a nearby branch to lean in closer at the other, and noticed a pair of wings that easily matched the whites of the snow that lay at her feet. And it was then that Zidane realized that it was a girl. A rather cute girl, he had to add. Most people and all the members of Zidane’s old entourage would instantly recognize the lecherous smirk that came to play across the corners of his lips.
His intentions were never evil, maybe they were ‘out there’ compared to others, but never evil. Cute girls deserved attention, and that was what Zidane was going to deliver. Besides…like this district in general, something…was off. She was alive, that much he could discern offhandedly, but also, from the teen’s perspective, she appeared to be clinging to something like her life depended on it. She didn’t appear to be a crazed tree-hugger, at least…and if she was, her she looked far more suited to be one than others.
Taking a deep breath, he cleared his head off all the strange thoughts about this area, and tightened his hold on the branch as he leaped off, landing right beside the downed birdie. He lowered his form, a single knee falling into the snow as a shade of concern crossed his features for a brief moment before shifting back into his flirty smile. “Hey, what’s a cutie like you doing here? Someone as pretty as yourself shouldn’t be out here alone.” The last word came from his lips with added emphasis, simply because he was aware of a third party here, someone who appeared to be spying on the birdie. Intending to call this person out of his/her hiding spot, his kept his body tensed and ready to react should someone or something try to create danger in an already insecure environment.
With all her focus on the frame in front of her, Zephyr was oblivious to everything else going on around her. Sneaky people spying, extroverts trying to make contact, wolves that sought an answer to their troubles, all of it was as distant to the winged girl as summer in snow-frosted Traverse Town. She strained in her effort, her arms tense and finger tips white as they pressed hard into the frame. Despite the chill, beads of sweat were beginning to collect on her brow.
It wasn't until her center became off balance and Zephyr felt herself falling when she lost focus, her eyes opening wide in a panic. Her hands detached from the frame and the bridge she held with the arcane object snapped, crumbling into an icy river that swept the remains downstream and far out of her reach. She sat there, trying to hold onto something, anything, until the light that shown in her heart flickered out and Zephyr was left feeling cold and alone.
She shivered, the feathers of her good wing rustling as her broken one rattled in a dull ache. Despite losing the connection, the Aeristocrat was pleased. She had sensed something in the frame. What, she couldn't tell, another world, maybe, perhaps an alternate realm, but whatever it was it was there. The frame wasn't just some discarded object that sought a lark with her feelings and emotions. It was alive, or something. Or something was alive in it. That much Zephyr was sure.
Movement caught the corner of her eye and the winged girl turned her head, oddly calm and not at all surprised. Spoken words had floated around her subconscious but they were too far off, vague and distant and she could not grab them from where they were held suspended in her head. She leaned in and narrowed her eyes. The boy's pretty face came into focus.
Under normal circumstances, a boy falling—from a tree, from the sky, Mia hadn't seen which—would have been startling, even from so far away. All she really felt was a pang of surprise that made her eyes widen a fraction of an inch, but not much else.
For a moment, Mia wondered if the boy and the winged girl knew each other. The girl didn't seem to notice him—not at first, anyway. But by the question she asked when she did, she didn't. It was more the way that the boy let the word "alone" slip into the still air that made her a little uneasy. So many ways to interpret that word.
Mia touched the silver chain that hung around her neck, her heart skipping a beat. Leave, that's what she should do. But, damn her inborn concern, she couldn't just walk away without knowing if either of the people in front of her had ill intentions. She took a step back, her boots crunching quietly in the snow.
It occured to her if she were caught, they might think that she was the one with ill intentions. Her grip on her quarterstaff loosened just a bit, but she prepared to call out Shadow as a distraction if need be.
The blonde merely watched as the birdie stirred from out of her odd trance. She looked as if she were waking from a nap, for her face carried with it a spell that wasn’t commonly seen out in public, in the middle of the cold. His tail curled slightly at its tip, gliding across the slush snow as he briefly assessed this girl. She had the sense to wear a jacket, she had wings…which was unique. However, cerulean eyes narrowed for only a few seconds at the wing that was wrapped in white bandages. While the apparent injury didn’t appear to be fatal or life threatening by any means, this third party presence could have been more than enough to change that in a blink of an eye.
When the girl finally came to, his gaze shifted to her face, a lopsided grin broke through all of the screaming thoughts ranging in his head, through the danger the nearby area posed to both persons. He answered the proposed question seemingly without a care in the world. “Who am I? I’m your knight in shining armor. Zidane Tribal’s the name, protecting cuties like you is my game.” Tensing his bent knee he raised up to stand on both legs, holding out a single gloved hand to help her up like the chivalrous flirt he always aimed to be.
The carefree thief however, could not dispel the aura that permeated through this place. He didn’t belong here...or did he? With his hand out, he stole a second to look around the area again, this time with placing more priority in his surroundings. A sudden howl in the distance brought with it goosebumps as well as that sinking feeling in his stomach. Slowly, he placed his free hand on the sheath at his side, already anticipating the worst. Something, or someone was watching them, and apparently didn’t budge despite openly referring to said person. Whatever the case, these foreboding feelings had him on edge, and he didn’t want to look bad in front of this cute girl.
"Is that right?" Zephyr asked, the left side of her mouth curling in a flirtatious grin. He thought her cute. That was exciting. "Tell me, gallant Zidane," she said, taking his hand and rising to her feet, "do I look like a girl in need of protection?" Though she was playing with him, part of her was curious to know if she seemed like the sort that would find themselves in trouble when left to their own devices in the shadier parts of Traverse Town. Zephyr was by no means a delicate girl, but others didn't know that, and she had already noticed a change in attitude around her now that she had a proper jacket and pants to wear. People were more inclined to treat her with respect.
It must have been either brilliant timing or terrible luck that a wolf's howl answered her question before Zidane had a chance. The Aeristocrat shivered, the hairs on the nape of her neck rising in discomfort and dread. She turned her head, trying to seek out the source of the howl. She did not look with her eyes, blind and useless as they were, but listened instead with her ears, her head cocked and held askew as she sought to decipher meaning out of the wolf's call. It had not sounded threatening, but there was a certain pitch to it that spoke of terrible loss and anguish. There was no answer, and for some reason it only managed to put Zephyr more on edge than before.
Her wings fidgeted in a nervous twitch. Part of her wanted to leave, but there was another part--the part that held an affinity for animals, grown out of ostracism from her peers and acceptance from the forest below--that desired to seek out this wolf and provide comfort and solace to the poor soul. Not all hearts that survived belonged to people.
There was tension in the air, brought by this unease and apprehension. Turning back to Zidane, Zephyr narrowed her eyes, noticing his rigid body and the way his hand hovered at his side. The Aeristocrat did not think they were in any danger, but then, wolves could be volatile creatures. Still, if they happened to come across this wolf, she did not want violence to be their first course of action.
"I'm Zephyr. Zephyr Arci," she said, attempting to dispel the tension.
Zephyr. A cute and relevant name. Acknowledging her question, he maintained his silly smile, “You prolly don’t need help from this gallant guy,” he said, pointing to his chest, the reference clear, “but it couldn’t hurt to keep you company! ‘Side’s…it’s pretty lonely out here…” Zidane kept his eyes on the other the entire while, noting the flirtatious smirk that spread across her lips. She seemed slightly preoccupied with something, and Zidane already had a hunch as to what. This area brought more questions than answers…along with a danger that was both thrilling and chilling at the same time.
Cerulean hues averted themselves from her notably pretty eyes as they finally took in the very structure situated that the birdy clung to. Its style was intricate and old fashioned; Zidane would reason this thing to have been worth a hefty penny…if its glass was more intact. Clearly, this thing wasn’t what set the blonde, (and Zephyr, he noted) to be on edge and while some curiosity arise from this random object in an random courtyard, for the time being he cast the thought to the wayside, in order to place an easygoing hand on Zephyr’s shoulder.
It was a risky move, he knew, but if something was unsettling her, easing her was only the right thing to do. The wind chose this opportune moment to pick up in slight intensity, causing some snow flurries to scatter around, bits and pieces of snow wound up all over them both. Withdrawing his hand from atop his sheath he chose to wipe his face and bangs to rid some of the annoying cold stuff, a gentle smile replacing the former playful one. “Hey, I don’t know what’s on your mind, but I promise I’ll make everything okay, alright?” Considering he was still pretty new in town compared to some people, while the other likely possessed more knowledge about this place, he didn’t want to pry…yet. Times like this called for a caring/leadership role, simply because they wasn’t alone now, and statues/broken mirrors didn’t exactly count as people.
Mia went over her choices in her head. Run and potentially get caught—and potentially meaning probably, as she didn't quite have the grace of a ninja—or stay put and don't move and hope no one notices. The choices...
Something in the back of her mind told her she was being overly cautious. She'd escaped enough trouble in her time. Plus they looked pretty preoccupied talking with each other.
There was always a third choice, she suppposed. Mia didn't talk to people much, and meeting some new people could go her good. Who knows, one of them might know something helpful that she didn't. But what would she do—saunter up to them and introduce herself with a hello, ask them what they were doing in this lonely part of town?
She gave a none too silent snort at the idea, but quickly clapped her hand over her mouth. Did she just do that? Did she really just do that? She more annoyed with herself than panicked. Did they hear me? She didn't wait to see before making a split-second decision, casually propping her quarterstaff on her shoulder and putting on her most innocently curious face. She turned so that she wasn't directly facing the two, but instead focusing her attention on one of the nearby statues, trying to make it seem like she was just some wanderer who had stumbled upon the courtyard and was preoccupied by these stunning works of art. If they saw her, hopefully that's all they would think of her. It was, after all, sort of true.
Last Edit: Apr 11, 2013 17:24:01 GMT -4 by Deleted
Being raised as a thief for well over ten consecutive years, Zidane’s level of perception tends to be superior to the average person. It was this attribute that allowed him to pick up on things that others would take longer to comprehend. So it came as little surprise that the blonde lifted his hand from the bird’s shoulder, whipping around quickly towards the source of the disturbance. He walked around a few of the archaic statues, each step lacking his bandit stealth, and it was then that he spotted a red head staring oddly at one of the carvings.
Zidane at the moment could care less about the details, considering it was another cute female. She did not project any danger unlike the previous resounding howling, and that alone gave himself the right to approach her with little tact. He came rather close, in fact he was side by side with the other, with one hand cupping his chin in mock thought, mouth curving into the smirk that Zephyr seemed to already be acquainted with. His eyes were on the statue, but based on his previous checkout of the girl, Zidane knew enough. She was cute, and therefore, “You know, I like this statue too. It’s cut pretty well, but, not as well as the lady next to me.”
Based on appearance alone, she clearly wasn’t as boisterous as the genome beside him, but that left him to finally dwell on the reason for her sudden “arrival”. She wasn’t making an entrance, in fact no one can make a better entrance than the tailed blonde, but she looked to be here with reason. If this district didn’t create such ominous feelings, Zidane would have just written it off. The broken down mirror, the statues, the wary expression on Zephyr’s cute face—there had to be something here that the bandit did not comprehend. His mind worked to wrap his head around the situation, but the lecherous smirk remained.
Last Edit: Apr 12, 2013 21:53:06 GMT -4 by Deleted