“Oh yeah! I forgot! Since Kiera, Terra, and I have Mark of Mastery exams tomorrow-“ Aqua reached into her pocket and pulled out four star-shaped charms, all different, gleaming colors, “-I made us good luck charms!”
“Woah! Aqua, they’re beautiful!” Kiera gasped.
Aqua tossed one to each of her friends. Ventus received a lime green one, Terra was tossed the orange one, Aqua kept the blue charm, and lastly, Kiera caught the red one.
“Yay! My favorite color! Thanks Aqua!” Kiera exclaimed.
Aqua grinned. She glanced back up at the sky.
“Somewhere out there, there’s this tree with star-shaped fruit,” Aqua explained, “and the fruit represents an unbreakable connection. So as long as you and your friends carry good luck charms shaped like it, nothing can ever drive you apart. You’ll always find your way back to each other. Technically, I think you’re supposed to make them with seashells, but I did the best with what I had.”
“You mean, these aren’t real good luck charms?” Ventus asked.
Kiera elbowed him.
“Ow!” said Ventus, glaring at her.
“Well, that’s yet to be seen. But I did work a little magic on it” Aqua responded.
“Really? What kind?” Kiera asked.
Aqua glanced at her and smiled mischievously.
“An unbreakable connection.”
“Well, I’ve got presents for everyone too!” Kiera announced, “But everyone’s gonna have to wait until after the exam. It’s a surprise!”
“Ooh, I wonder what it could be…” Terra wondered.
“Was that sarcasm?” Kiera accused.
“Come on Kiera, not even a hint?” said Ventus.
Kiera shook her head.
Ventus pouted. Kiera rolled her eyes, and pretended to give in.
“Okay, fine. I’ll give you one!” She decided.
“What?” asked Aqua.
“That you are going to absolutely and completely love it!”
“Huh? That’s not a hint!” Ventus objected.
“Well, since we’re up, anybody wanna spare?” said Terra.
“I do!” said Kiera raising her hand enthusiastically.
Kiera walked toward him, summoning her keyblade, Dreamseeker, a blade with a carmine red, heart shaped hilt and a silver wrapped blade, ending with a half moon and star. Terra’s keyblade was called Earth Shaker, a sturdy keyblade with a teal blue hilt and gold and brown colors. They spared for about five minutes. It seemed Terra was going to quickly overtake Kiera, but Kiera took the lead and soon overtook him. Soon, Terra was bending over, panting hard, supporting himself with his keyblade.
“Had enough?” asked Kiera, resting her keyblade on her shoulders.
Terra stood up.
“Not bad…not bad at all” said Terra breathlessly.
Kiera grinned. She ran up to him and raised her hand for a high-five. Terra glanced at her with an eyebrow raised, then chuckled, and gave her a high five.
After everyone had a turn sparing each other, Ventus said proudly:
“Trust me, you three are ready! You’re gonna clean up at the exam tomorrow!”
“Well of course, we’ve got you as our coach!” said Kiera.
Ventus blushed a little, putting his arms behind his head.
“Hope it’s that easy” said Terra.
“It’s like what the Master said: power is born within the heart. When the time right, you just need to look inside yourself and you’ll find it there” said Aqua.
“Spoken like a true master” said Kiera.
Then, she frowned.
“I hope I can pass. Master Eraques never ceases to remind me how rare it is a kid my age to take the exam.”
“You will” Terra stated, assuringly.
Kiera glanced up at him.
“And what if I don’t? What do I do then?”
“You’ll just have to practice harder until you get another chance.”
Terra looked up at Ventus.
“Although, you will be stuck with Ven.”
“Well, that won’t be so bad. He is my best friend after all.”
Ventus noticed Kiera and Terra looking at him and whispering.
“Hey, what’re you talking about!?” He called.
“Nothing!” She called back.
Terra and Aqua had decided to go back inside and get some sleep. Kiera stayed outside with Ventus a little bit longer and continued to watch the stars. Eventually, even Kiera was growing eager to go inside.
“Hey, I’m going to head back to bed. You okay?” She asked.
Ventus didn’t answer. He seemed lost in thought, with a worried expression on his face.
“Hey, you okay?” She asked again.
“Oh, yeah!” He responded, “I’ll catch up. Sorry, I was just thinking.”
“What happens when you three pass the exam?” He wondered, “I’m going to be the only student left. You and Terra have been especially itching to see other worlds.”
He looked up at Kiera.
“Will you come back?”
“Of course I will!” Kiera exclaimed, “I think I’d go insane without my dose of Ventus every once in a while!”
She sat close beside him.
“Hey, maybe Eraques will let me take you somewhere. When I find where I came from, I want you to see it too!”
Ventus scoffed. “You sure he’d let you do it?”
Kiera grinned. “As long as I bring you back by curfew.”
The two chuckled.
“I promise, I’ll always come back for you, okay?” Kiera vowed.
Ventus looked at her and smiled.