In the Belly of the Whale
“So, Cinderella didn’t fall to darkness. That’s good. Very good.”
Kiera was quiet. She was greatly discouraged. She had returned to Traverse Town to report to the Fairy Godmother and Merlin. Sora, Donald, and Goofy had left a long time ago to lock other worlds. Kiera was disappointed.
Somehow, she was hoping he would find her.
Then, she said, “Riku said ‘The Door awaits’. What did he mean by that?”
The two masters of magic frowned, the Fairy Godmother most of all.
“Then it is as we feared,” Merlin declared, “The Princesses of Heart are being gathered.”
“The Princesses of Heart? Who’re they?”
“Young women who are the purest of heart,” Merlin explained, “There are seven of them, and every time the princesses have fulfilled their roles, a new seven will be chosen.”
“-And Cinderella was one of those seven” the Fairy Godmother added, “I tasked myself with protecting her, so that she wouldn’t be used by the wrong people to unlock the keyhole to Kingdom Hearts. I failed.”
“A mysterious, and ultimate source of power.”
“Nobody really knows. The true meaning of Kingdom Hearts was lost to time. Only an elite few are aware of its existence, even fewer know the methods of opening it.”
“Except the Princesses” said Kiera.
“Yes dear. That is only well–known method for sure.”
Just then, Kiera thought of something terrible.
“So you’re saying…Riku’s trying to unlock Kingdom Hearts using the Princesses!?” She cried.
“We can’t say for sure” said Merlin, “It could be possible that he’s working with someone; perhaps he is being used to gather the Princesses.”
“Then I’ve gotta warm him!” Kiera exclaimed with determination, “And Sora too!”
“Woah, slow down there, little one!” said Merlin, “Whoever these people are, are most likely extremely dangerous! You won’t be able to fight them alone!”
“I’m not looking for a fight” said Kiera, “I only wanna save Riku! I’m not losing him like-!”
Kiera stopped. She was about to say someone’s names, but she couldn’t remember who they were… She was bothered. Why did she keep doing this? Why could she remember things, and yet not remember at all?
“All of these fuzzy memories, they’re all from my past. I know it!” Kiera thought, “I had some friends very close to me, one of them being this boy Ventus. So why can’t I remember how, or why?”
She took a deep breath, and sighed.
“I’ll be careful Merlin. I promise” said Kiera, “I’m going to bring Riku back here. Then, after Sora restores the worlds, we’re going home. Me, Sora, Riku…”
She paused for a moment.
“Very well then. Do be careful little one. Don’t lose yourself to the darkness.”
“I won’t. I promise.”
A whale. A giant, gray sperm whale, swimming across the galaxy of worlds.
“What the-?” Kiera started.
Then, the whale spotted Kiera on her space-travel vehicle. It growled, then roared, then started swimming towards her.
“Holy crap!!!” Kiera exclaimed.
She turned her ship around and slammed the accelerator. The ship’s engines roared to life, and sped off into the opposite direction of the whale. After a while, Kiera thought she maybe an gotten away. However, when she turned around, she could see the teeth of a great mammal, ready to swallow her whole! She screamed.
“VENTUS! HELP ME!”
And then, there was darkness.
“Kiera? Kiera! Kiera, wake up!”
She felt an aggressive shake. Kiera twitched her fingers. She groaned, and pulled her eyes open. She saw familiar, spiky brown-hair, and bright blue eyes.
“S-Sora?” She asked.
When her vision became clearer, she realized Sora had a pained, sorrowful, fearful expression. She pulled herself up.
“What…? What happened?” She asked.
She could see the outline of a mouth and two giant rows of teeth. She could see the throat of the giant whale on the other side of the chamber. They were inside the mouth of the whale. Not just that, but also inside a shipwreck. Sora suddenly embraced her, and squeezed her tightly. She was surprised.
“I was so worried about you!” Sora cried, “Merlin told me you left Traverse Town. You didn’t even say goodbye! Even Riku didn’t know where you were!”
“Riku…” Kiera thought.
Sora looked at her. “I can’t lose you again like I lost Kairi.”
Kiera said nothing. She slowly wrapped her arms around him.
“What have you got there, Pinocchio?”
“With this, we can get out of here, Father!”
“Really, with this big block. You think so?”
In came a little puppet boy, with black hair, blue eyes, and a cylinder nose. He was carrying a giant green block in his hand, which looked to be a Gummi block. He placed it at the side of an older man with gray hair and glasses.
“It’s true” said Sora.
“My name is Geppetto. I’m Pinocchio’s father” said the man to Kiera, “when we got separated, I traveled all over, looking for him. Thank goodness we’re together again.”
Kiera gripped her hand on her heart as she thought about Riku. How she missed him!
“So, I see you know Pinocchio quite well. I hope he was a good boy in my absence” said Geppetto, “Well, we’ve all had quite a journey. Right, Pinocchio?”
There was no response. He turned around to see that Pinocchio had disappeared.
“Pinocchio!” called Geppetto, “oh now where did he go!?”
“I’ll go find him” said Sora, “come on Kiera.”
Kiera stood up and nodded, following Sora, Donald, and goofy through a tunnel.