Re:Connect – Kiera Dreamseeker {Part 3} – Chapter XVI

The Forbidden Mountain

Dark clouds loomed overhead and the sky rumbled with thunder. The dark, decrypted castle loomed overhead. Kiera, Ventus, and the three fairies advanced up the hill until they found a secret entrance into the Forbidden Mountain and stepped inside. Inside were sleeping guards, half pig and half human, snoring and snorting, with saliva hanging out of their mouths like the animals they were. Ventus was about to summon his keyblade, but Kiera raised her hand in opposition. 

“These guys will be a waste of time,” she whispered, “Let’s sneak through as much as we can.”

Ventus opened his mouth to argue. Then, he nodded in agreement. 

“Good idea” he whispered.

Kiera turned to the good fairies.

“Do you have any idea where Aurora’s heart may be?” she asked.

“Yes, we know where she is. We can feel her heart is close” Merryweather replied, “Near the top of the castle.”

“Come on dears, swiftly and silently now” Flora instructed.

*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*

For the most part, they managed to sneak through the castle with little to no incident. They did come across a maze that was rather puzzling to solve. Guards crawled throughout its crevices, and Kiera and Ventus had to take down a few. Ventus was more ambitious at stepping into what Kiera referred to as “portal puddles” to navigate the maze. Any moment Kiera feared the next one they walked into would be a trap. Finally, they made it through and Kiera, Ventus, and the three fairies were able to continue on their way. 

*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*

At last, the team entered a large room, stone and covered with moss. In the center was a podium, surrounded by a barrier produced by powerful green flames. Kiera suddenly shook Ventus’ arm. 

“Look!” She cried.

Ventus looked and peered hard to be able to see. Then, he saw amongst the fire a floating orb composed of pure, golden light. 

“Yeah, I see it!” Ventus exclaimed

“Aurora’s heart!” Flora announced, “It’s got to be!”

“So, that’s what a heart looks like…” Ventus mumbled. 

Kiera stared in awe. The two of them had never seen a heart from the outside of their bodies. A part of them never really wanted to, especially Kiera. The thought of a heart, the very soul of a person, violently ripped from them, leaving nothing but a husk was terrifying to her.

“No one should have that kind of power” Kiera mumbled, her fists tightening, “No one has the right to remove someone’s heart. It’s immoral…” 

Ventus ran up the podium.

“How do you suppose we get her out?” He asked.

The Good Fairies pulled out their wands. 

“All together now girls” Flora instructed. 

They raised their wants high into the air. A flash of sparkled came from the tips and flew into the barrier. However, nothing happened. They attempted their spell again. No result. The fairies grew discouraged.

“What? What’s wrong?” Kiera inquired.

“Maleficent” Merryweather groaned, “She’s put a very powerful lock on Aurora’s heart. Our magic isn’t powerful enough to break it!”

“So what do we do?” Ventus asked.

“I don’t know, but if Aurora’s heart cannot be returned for her, she will never wake from her slumber!” Flora wailed.

Ventus folded his arms and groaned, trying to think of a solution. The Fairies congregated in a circle to discuss their predicament. Kiera thought too, long and hard. 

Suddenly Kiera heard a heartbeat. It rang in her ears, and shook the insides of her head. She slowly turned her heel, and drew her attention to the heart floating atop the podium. She took a step forward, entranced, like a moth to a flame, the whispering of the Fairies falling away. Ventus noticed.

“Kiera?” He asked, concerned. 

Kiera raised her hands to her heart. Her eyelids felt heavy. Without hesitation, she closed them.

She collapsed to the floor in front of the barrier.

“Kiera!” Ventus cried.

The fairies heard and were alarmed. Ventus ran to her side and fell to his knees. He shook her. 

“Kiera? Kiera, wake up!” He exclaimed. He put his hands under her and lifted her head to his lap. He shook her again, more violently.

“Kiera! What’s wrong with you!?”

The fairies floated hastily over. Fauna knelt down to examine her. She was perplexed.

“Please, tell me what’s wrong!” Ventus demanded.

Fauna didn’t answer at first. She was uncertain. Then, she assured Ventus:

“There’s nothing to worry about dear, she’s only sleeping.”

“Sleeping? How? What happened?” 

“I’m…not sure.”

Something must have happened! Maybe Maleficent’s sneaking about and put a sleeping spell on her too!” exclaimed Merryweather.

“I don’t believe that’s the case…” Fauna rebuttled.

Flora examined Kiera as well, before responding.

“I don’t sense any evil magic. I think we should wait. Perhaps in a few minutes, Kiera will wake, and she can tell us what happened.”

Ventus glanced back down at Kiera. She seemed to be sleeping peacefully. Gently, he moved the hair out of her face.

“Come on Kiera. Please wake up quickly” he urged.

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