In our innocence we are blind to see
To things we don't expect to see
Then opens wide an unknown door
A door to eternity
~Clara M. Miller-Echoes of A Haunting
Air or water? What was he floating through exactly? Ten year old Aryon had no idea how long he had been floating about through the thick, heavy blanket of darkness that surrounded him from every angle. A strange, bizarre world where time seemed to have frozen.
His feet soon settled on the ground. Chestnut brown eyes wide with immense curiosity. A gasp soon escapes his lips as he glances down at the platform he’s on now: A stained glass image of a woman with long blond hair, wearing a pink dress and quite a beauty. Sharp-looking thorns decorated around the glass.
She looked to be in a deep slumber as he walked along. Head tilted to the side in case he missed anything.
Shortly after did three grey pedestals appear before him. In the middle one held a long, sharp looking sword. Power just radiating off of it. On his left was a mage staff filled with strong magical power giving one all the wisdom you can imagine. And last on his left was a shield that seemed to fit him just right to aid him in battle.
A certain power sleeps within you. If you give it form, it will give you strength.
Aryon nodded slowly in understanding at the voice that echoed in his head.
With a small breath he walked up to the mage staff. A voice whispered. The power of the mystic-Inner strength. A staff of wonder and ruin. Is this the power you seek?
Aryon nodded mouthing ‘Yes’. The staff then disappears into a ball of light going into his body.
Your path has been set. Now what will you give up in exchange?
Aryon walked up to the shield picking it up. The power of the guardian. Kindness to aid friends. A shield who repels all. You give up this power?
Aryon nodded once more. The shield vanished into the same ball of light. Each of the grey pedestals began to fall apart causing the boy to panic. What the hell was going on? With fear clearly seen on his features, beginning to wonder if he made the right decisions when he then begins to fall into oblivion.
A ball of light appeared in his hand after he landed on another stained glass platform, looking down to see it was in the image of pink hearts.
That’s when the strange bug like creatures appeared. Aryon took a defensive stance, swiping at one with his staff that dared to strike him doing the same to another shortly after picking up a yellow and green ball that healed his wounded knee.
Darkness spread across the platform. The next thing Aryon knew he was back again on his island. The skies a crystal clear, ocean blue. Vast and calm. On one part of the island he recognized a girl he and his friends knew: Selphie. Then Waka another young man and Tidus.
He walked up to Selphie first. Her eyes strangely blank.
“What’s most important to you?”
“To become strong and protect others.” Aryon replied.
“Is strength really all that important?”
He walked over to Tidus and Waka. They wore the same, vacant expressions.
“What are you afraid of?” Tidus asked.
“Is growing old really so scary?”
Aryon looked at Waka next. “What do you want ‘outta life?”
“To actually be somebody important.”
“Somebody important eh?”
Aryon struggled greatly against the large, dark creature he had just run into. His blue hair matted against his forehead panting heavily trying to duck and dodge each of its attacks. “Now to end you!” He shouted, bashing away at the creature’s hand when it slammed its fist down only to have him land on his back upon impact.
Chestnut colored eyes soon flutter open squinting at the rays of sunlight. A figure loomed over him causing panic to course through his body, believing it to be one of those shadow creatures. He let out a rather un-boyish shriek for someone his age holding a hand to his chest.
“Sora!” The blue haired boy hisses out. “You know I hate it when people scare me like this. Damn….”
A snicker escaped Sora’s lips. “Sorry. Just thought I’d check up on you: Are you alright? Looked like you were having a bad dream.”
Aryon had thought about telling Sora what he had dreamt about ultimately deciding to keep it to himself. In truth this was not the first time the dream came to him. Call him crazy but he felt it was almost a warning of something to come eventually. “I’m fine, Sora,” he finally said. “Just had a really bizarre dream.”
Sora put his hands on his hips. “Oh here we go. Let me guess: You were dreaming that you killed the Happy Mask Salesman didn’t you?”
“No! Well….not this time anyway,” Aryon admitted. Like many Zelda fans the Happy Mask Salesman of Majora’s Mask just really gave him horrible creeps. He hasn’t been able to play the game completely since knowing he’d eventually have to see him again. “It just. It wasn’t normal. Not like my usual dreams.”
Sora’s blue eyes widened letting his arms fall to his side. “You to?! I thought I was the only one on this island having them.”
“Do you think they mean anything?” Aryon pondered.
“Dunno. I do know one thing though,” Sora began looking out into the ocean. Its waves gently lapping to the shoreline. “If you had it and I had it then something’s up. Two people having the same dream? What are the odds?”
“You lazy bums. I thought we’d find you here.”
Whirling around, Aryon grinned at the sight of their other friends Kairi and Syao. Syao was a boy a little older than they were but liked hanging around them. He was Kairi’s first friend when she washed up on the beach one day.
“Give us a break Kairi,” Sora sighed. “I just thought I’d check up on Aryon.”
“Suuuuure.” Syao responded smiling. Not at all convinced.
Kairi turned to look at him. “Syao do you have the list?’
“List? Oh!” The maroon hair colored boy quickly shifted through his shorts pocket sighing with relief when he fished it out. “Yup still got it Kairi.”
Soon after they sat around on the shoreline together with Riku and their other companion Levi joining them. When Sora asked Kairi if she remembers what her home was like she shook her head. “No,” she began softly. “I don’t remember. I would like to though…and see other worlds someday.”
Aryon nodded in agreement. “So would I. Like Hyrule, NiGHTs, the Zora Domain in Hyrule…”
“Oh here we go.” Levi laughed, brushing a strand of green hair out of his face. “You’re such a nerd Aryon.”
“Hey aren’t I entitled to my own dreams?!” Aryon retorted with a laugh of his own.
“Sure everyone is. Yours are just lam-wha-!” Levi was soon covered in water from a smirking Aryon sticking his tongue out in a playful manner. “Oh aren’t you funny?” He rolls his sea green eyes.
“Alright where’s the mushroom?” Aryon grumbled. After he had finished the race with Riku and Sora (coming in last of course), he began helping them find the list of things Kairi wrote down. All that was needed was one more mushroom for the food. Wandering inside the cave he tilted his head finding Sora inside. “Eh? Sora? What’s up?’
Now it was his turn to jump, whirling around shaking his head at the sight of Aryon. “Oh c’mon,” he complained. “Did you have to sneak up on me like that dude?’
A playful grin etched across his face walking up beside his friend. “Consider it payback for yesterday.” Looking down, he smiled faintly seeing a drawing of him and Sora sharing a paoupu fruit together. And…there was one of Syao with Kairi. He already knew which of the two had done so and it clearly wasn’t Kairi.
“I remember this,” he began. “We drew it when we were five didn’t we?”
Sora nodded. Greatly pleased Aryon remembered. “Yeah. We promised one day we’d share a paoupu fruit with one another.”
Aryon places his hand on the drawing when he jumps back with Sora out of fright at a strange, hooded figure.
"This world has been connected.”
“Who’re you?” Aryon demands boldly. Clenching his fist tight at his side.
"Tied to the darkness..." said the figure. “Soon to be completely eclipsed.”
Sora gave a narrow of his eyes making sure Aryon didn’t get hurt. “Where did you come from? Stop freaking us out will ya?”
“You do not know what lies beyond this door.”
Aryon tilted his head. Eyes slightly wide. “Wait. Are…You from another world then?”
“There is so much to learn. You both understand little.”
“Oh yeah? Well you’ll see! We’re going to get out and learn what’s really out there!” Sora exclaimed as Aryon nodded in agreement getting into a kung-fu pose.
The figure all but shakes their head. “A foolish effort. One who knows nothing can understand nothing.”
When they turned to retort.
He was already gone.
Kairi had been making something as Sora and Aryon walked up to her and Syao. “That was really weird wasn’t it?” Aryon whispered. “I mean that guy just completely vanished into thin air.”
Sora nodded in agreement. He as well was slightly disturbed by what they were just told. “You’re telling me. What was that all about any way?” He makes his voice deeper repeating what the man had told them. “’ You do not know what lies beyond this door’. Really what could that mean?” But Aryon hushed the minute they walked up to their friends clearing his throat. “We got the stuff.”
“What’re you making Kairi?” Aryon questioned kneeling down beside her.
"This? I'm making a necklace out of Thalassa shells. In the old days, sailors always wore Thalassa shells. They were supposed to ensure a safe voyage." She held them up for them to see. "See this? It's a charm to help us find each other if we ever got separated, the six of us will always be together.”
Syao smiled lightly patting her on the shoulder. “We should go home and rest up. Got a big day ahead of us tomorrow.”
Some hours had passed that same day. The evening sun glistened in the almost darkening skies, twilight making its decent of the last hours of the day. "You know, Riku has changed." Kairi spoke a loud.
Aryon nodded in agreement. “You got that right,” he muttered. “He seems so distant from us, anymore."
Kairi gave a sad nod before she soon smiled. "Guys, let's take our raft and go, just the four of us!”
They looked at her as if she weren’t human. Syao’s eyes widened. “Kairi. What’s gotten into you?” He asked in bewilderment. A giggle soon sounded from the girl, a pale hand reaching up to flick his nose that he rubs soon after.
"What's gotten into you? You're the one that's changed, Kairi." Sora said only to be nudged by Aryon.
“Not cool bro.” Aryon chastised him.
Kairi shrugged. "Maybe..." She said but just kept looking at the sunset. "You know...I was a little afraid at first, but now I'm ready! No matter where I go or what I see, I know I can always come back here, right?"
“Of course you can!” The three stated in unison looking at one another with slightly shocked expressions. Soon they have a good hearted laugh about it.
"Guys, don't ever change." She brushes a stray strand of reddish hair behind her ear. "I just can't wait. Once we set sail, it'll be great."
Night of Fate
Sora and Aryon came upon an odd sight of their friend’s boats out in the water. After taking out some of the many odd bug like creatures from their dream Aryon spotted Riku and Levi on another island. Everything was pitch black and the wind began to violently pick up.
“Riku!" Sora hollered out. “Where’s Kairi and Syao? We thought they were with you!”
“What are you blabbering about?” Aryon snapped. Struggling not to be blown away literally off of his feet. “Where’s Kairi and Syao?”
“Kairi and Syao are coming with all of us,” Riku stated looking at a strange orb. “Once we go through…we may not be able to come back. We won’t be able to see our parents again. There’s no turning back. This is our only chance…we can’t let fear stop us. I’M NOT AFRAID OF THE DARKNESS!”
“Riku don’t!” Sora tried grabbing ahold of the other’s arm only to be swiped away. Like he was nothing but a rag doll.
The duo struggle to get to Riku before darkness swallows them completely. Sora curses, grabbing hold of Aryon’s hand dragging them out as fast as his legs can carry him. Riku was gone just as Aryon tried to grab him.
Quickly do they make a mad dash for the Secret Place. “Syao! Kairi!” Sora called out.
“?!” Lifting his head up Syao sighs with relief after having made a failed attempt to snap Kairi out of the zombie like state she was in. “Thank goodness you guys are safe! Kairi…She…I-I don’t know what happened to her.”
When Kairi looks at her friends her pretty blue eyes are dull. No life in them what so ever. “So-ra….Ary…on.”
“Kairi.” Aryon whispered. With a trembling hand he moves it forward only to be blown on his back by a large gust of wind that shot out from the door pulling a struggling Syao in along with Kairi.