Username   Password  
Remember   Register   |   Forgot your password?

Chapter 18 - The Fight of Flames

Trapped in an unknown world swallowed in ultimate darkness, Sora and Riku must escape anyway possible! But someone lurks in the shadows ...

Its not the end of the world ... Its the end of the Universe!

Chapter 18 - The Fight of Flames

Chapter 18 - The Fight of Flames
Roxas stood staring fearfully towards the idle Axel, who in turn just stood there aimlessly, no reaction showing in the slightest. Riku, on the other hand, was still running around the fire-based arena as he tried his best not to burn his feet. Oblivious, he suddenly tripped up, and fell face first onto the fiery floor. He sat up hastily.
“Oh wait … this isn’t hot at all!” He finally realized, scratching his head with embarrassment.
But Riku noticed that Roxas wasn’t paying attention, instead had been frozen in place. Roxas was shaking; he never even considered the fact that he would be facing his best friend. It was only now that he realized: Axel had been the next member to be erased! He had been fighting side by side with Sora and fell protecting him from the Dusk Nobodies. Only to be cut down by Xaphire himself. But something wasn’t right; Demyx and Xaldin had greeted him with open arms … well, in their own way. But Axel wasn’t saying a thing, as though he was just like some sort of puppet. Roxas didn’t know what to do in this situation.
Just at that moment, Axel swiftly leapt backwards and disappeared from sight. Roxas jumped up by the sudden surprise. He searched about hastily to spot Axel within the flames, but he was nowhere in sight. Riku was soothing his feet, but then heard a wisp of flame sizzle above him. He instantly raised his head up.
“Roxas, above you!!!” He bellowed out.
Roxas hastily switched to Riku’s direction, but was too late to react. All he could was watch as Axel flew towards him at full speed. Axel launched his Chakrams with all his might and Roxas retaliated swiftly as he tried his best to parry the incoming weapons. Instantly bringing out his two Keyblades, Roxas had been able to parry the right Chakram just in time. But he did not watch where the other Chakram had been attacking from. Suddenly, Roxas was caught out from behind by the rogue Chakram and thrown heavily towards the edge of the arena. He struggled to his feet as he began to regain his perspectives, but unexpectedly felt Axel kick him powerfully in the ribs. On the floor, Roxas felt Axel’s boot pinning him down. He couldn’t think of anything to brush Axel away, he was still refusing to fight Axel and so attacking him now was out of the question. He could see Axel in the corner of his eye readying to finish the job at hand. Axel tensed his body and raised his right Chakram above, prepared to strike the finishing blow. Just then, something unexpectedly struck Axel, causing him to skid across the fiery floor to a halt. Roxas switched his sight to see Riku standing tall, pointing at Axel with a tense expression on his face.
“You have some nerve attacking your opponent while he’s unprepared!” Riku roared angrily, his teeth clenched together. He then switched to Roxas and helped him up to his feet. “I don’t know who this guy is but I could tell that you two used to be good friends. It reminds me … of something from my past. Don’t forget, he probably isn’t the same person as you remember him to be.” Riku told him wisely, a hint of his broken memories returning.
Roxas nodded in a reassured manner. But he felt that it wasn’t right to fight Axel, even if Roxas has fought him in the past. This whole scenario just didn’t sit right with him.
They both prepared themselves for Axel to strike for another conflict, but caught sight of something affecting Axel, showing something was wrong with him. Axel had a hand clutching his head tightly and was shaking slightly. Roxas tilted his head in curiosity, but this had only been short-lived. Axel unexpectedly reacted and launched his Chakrams once again, but this time they instantly burst into flame-wheels. Both Roxas and Riku retaliated swiftly and both successfully parried the incoming weapons. But they were not finished yet; the Chakrams span round like boomerangs and sliced in abruptly for another strike. Riku and Roxas kept on parrying the attacks and dodging them non-stop. But the flamed Chakrams continued on flying back to attack them, like they were somehow remote controlled. Roxas now had to think of a way to stop this from continuing; he couldn’t continue dodging and parrying like this forever. He knew already that he and Riku started to feel the fatigue; it was only a matter to time till they slip up fatally. Then, an idea came to mind, but … this had been where Roxas must now turn his body to the offense. He clutched his Keyblades as tight as he could; and as the Chakrams closed in on them, he stabbed through the open gaps of the weapons. This caused the two Chakrams to spin uncontrollably around the blades. Roxas took the opportunity and, without thinking, threw them back towards Axel. Axel had been unprepared for this and took the incoming weapons with full force, sending him flying nearly out of the ring of fire. He then stomped his feet against the floor and took back the control of his balance. Roxas regretted the idea straight away the moment he thought about it, but he now knew he had no choice in the matter. He watched Axel as he clutched his Chakrams heavily; he looked like he was in agony. But this had only gotten worse, Axel dropped to his knees with shrieks of pain echoing around the arena. Roxas began to shake in sorrow as the cries of despair continued to echo. And then the whispers began.
“Roxas … finish me … stop … Xaphire!” The whispers screamed in agony.
“Axel … is that actually you!?” Roxas jumped suddenly, gazing at the kneeling Axel.
“Xaphire … took my … memories … all of our memories … to fight against you … to erase you … to use you!” Axel’s whispery voice echoed. “Quickly … finish me!”
“B-But …!” Roxas tried to refuse, but had instantly been interrupted.
“Just do it ... I’d rather be dead … than to be … controlled by Xaphire!” Axel bellowed, the agony getting to him.
“I … I will.” Roxas finally agreed, although reluctantly. He then turned to Riku, “Thank you for the help, Riku. But now … this is a fight between olds friends.”
Riku didn’t argue back, he nodded as though he knew what was going on. Roxas smiled, and then turned back to Axel’s direction. He then steadied himself ready for Axel to attack. But Axel’s body began shaking violently.
“No … no … no … NOOOOOOO!!!” Axel’s whispers roared, deafening screams filled the room like nightmares.
Roxas covered his ears hastily by the deafening, horrible screeches, but continued to glare towards Axel as his body drastically lit up in flames. Seconds past, and Axel’s whole appearance and Chakrams revealed to gain extreme changes. His cloak was burning red, flames blazing from the fabric. His eyes were even on fire. His Chakrams had also lit up in continuous burning flames but unlike before it had grown basically 10x its normal size, and calmly began to float either side of Axel with ease. Axel had begun to, in turn, defy gravity himself.
This was Axel’s Final Form.
The fact that he had a Final Form had been unbelievable! Roxas was amazed by the sight of this change, gazing at the ferocity of Axel’s appearance. But swiftly snapped out of the trance and instantly turned serious. He had to keep himself engaged in the battle, because this was the fight to the death between the two of them. One mistake and this would be all over for him. Roxas felt that this conflict would be more of a fair fight if he entered his Final Form as well. But as he began to attempt the transformation, he suddenly realised he was still recovering from the battle with Xaldin. Meaning it was impossible to transform at this point in time. This was bad, as Axel took this advantage and went in for the attack. He flung the large, furious right Chakram straight towards Roxas with full force, the explosive power of the weapon made the whole arena shake like an earthquake. The other soon followed. Roxas hastily reacted, bracing himself for the impact. He guarded himself with the Keylades, hoping it would hold of the Chakram’s might. But it didn’t. The Chakrams both collided into Roxas unexpectedly at the same time, causing an enormous explosion that filled the whole arena. Riku gazed in horror as smoke instantly filled the room. Coughing and spluttering, he squinted as hard as he could to find out what was happening with the battle. Roxas had been hurtled against the fire-wall, catching his cloak alight. He had the wind completely knocked out of him, gasping to get his breath back in his lungs. Feeling the heat from the cloak, he kicked and stamped as fast as he could to put out the flame. Finally, not only did the fire go out, but he had caught his breath back. He took in as much oxygen as he could, and steadily got to his feet. Just at that moment, Axel appeared from nowhere and struck upwards with the Chakrams, catching Roxas out by surprise. Roxas had not been prepared for it at all and took the full blow, sending him sky-high. Axel leapt towards him for another strike, but Roxas recovered just in time to stop the incoming attack. He braced with the Keyblades, causing the weapons to collide explosively, and counter-attacked with as much might as he could wield. The Keyblades struck Axel in the chest, causing him to fall backwards. Roxas then landed back to the floor on his feet, panting and wheezing by the sheer amount of pain he was in. Axel took no time at all to recover from the attack and continued to throw the Chakrams towards Roxas’ direction. Roxas couldn’t continue to fight in the state he had been in now; he had to turn into his Final Form as soon as possible. He swiftly braced against the incoming attack and parried as best as he could. He then leaped in for another counter-attack, charging towards to patient Axel. Roxas smoothly leapt into the air, and struck a flurry of blows against Axel during consecutive flips in mid-air. Axel caught his Chakrams and swung him arms in order to direct the floating Chakrams towards Roxas’ direction. Roxas swiftly sprung back and landed farther away from Axel, ready for the next move. But then it finally hit him; Roxas had enough power recovered in him to transform into Final Form. This was now his chance to turn the tables around. He swiftly leapt into the air, grasping his Keyblades tight, and tensed all of his muscles. The white aura hastily surrounded his body, causing white, blinding light to form. Within seconds, his cloak turned from jet black to white with black, sharp patterns. His Keyblades were now floating by his sides, ready for action and battle. Roxas was reluctant on having to go all out on fighting Axel, but he knew now that Axel needed to be set free from Xaphires control. After learning the truth of Axel’s death from the last conversation he had with him, Roxas had to do this. Roxas prepared himself to clash with Axel, Axel also did the same. Both in Final Form, both ready to finish the conflict.
“Axel, you better not let me down!” Roxas called out, showing off a cheeky smile.
Axel didn’t say a word, but Roxas spotted him giving out a slight nod.
Roxas pushed against the floor with all his might and flew swiftly towards Axel, closing in to begin his strike. Axel, in turn, threw his Chakrams into the air and prepared to clash weapons. Roxas just began to swipe his arms to navigate the Keyblades when Axel unexpectedly began his ultimate attack. Instead of the Chakrams falling back down, a rain of fire and magma fell towards Roxas, catching him off guard completely. Roxas was thrown back, screaming in agony as his whole body continued to burn from the rain. Axel then clenched his fist in front towards Roxas, causing the Chakrams to fly in the demanded direction at a staggering speed. Upon impact with Roxas, an explosion erupted around the whole arena that was strong enough to cause a massacre. Riku hastily braced as the power from the explosion came into contact with his body. As the smoke finally cleared, both Axel and Riku realized that Roxas was nowhere in sight. He had completely disappeared.
Was the Explosion powerful enough to turn him into ash!? Riku’s thoughts wondered, terrified by the results of the battle.
But the battle wasn’t over yet.
“Hey! Axel!” A voice bellowed out from above.
Axel instantly gazed upwards; suddenly, Roxas’ Keyblades appeared from the darkness flying fast towards him. Axel tried to parry them as best as he could but they instantly began a flurry of strikes from every direction possible, making them impossible to stop. Axel didn’t know what to do; the Keyblades were attacking at an impossible speed and they were heading from all random directions. Just then, they suddenly shot up into the sky. This was followed by Roxas appearing from the darkness above and dropping towards the dazed Axel, executing the final attack. Using his Keyblades by his side, he swiftly swung them round opposite directions and caused them both to collide into Axel from both sides, finishing him off instantly.
Axel fell down to his knees, weakly dipping his head. His appearance quickly turned back to normal, with his Final Form showing no more. The fire-arena disappeared slowly and the light in the room began to lift up high. It was revealed that the room they were in was in fact an exact replica of the Basement Hall from Twilight Town’s Mansion. Roxas then reverted his own appearance back to normal and gazed sorrowfully towards the fallen Axel. Axel’s body began being engulfed in darkness, but his body was somehow trying to resist it.
“No … not yet … I need to … do one more thing.” Axel’s voice whispered, refusing to be erased.
“Axel …” Roxas felt pain lurch in his chest, wishing there was something he could do to help Axel.
“Roxas … is that … you?” Axel called out in a dying tone, his head lifted slightly.
Roxas then ran to his side, feeling he should be there for him.
“Yeah, I’m here.” He answered lightly and softly, kneeling by his side.
“Roxas … remember our … conversation?” Axel tried to ask, wheezing in agony.
“Yeah, but we didn’t finish it.” Roxas nodded truthfully. “What were you going to say to me?”
“There is … one way to … kill him.” Axel wheezed in pain. “But you need … Sora.”
“Sora?” Roxas echoed. “But at the moment he’s … a Heartless!”
“I know … his heart is shattered … but not gone.” Axel tried his best in his state to explain. “… Never gone.”
“Really!? So we can get him back!?” Roxas hastily asked out, hopes began to lift inside him.
“Heh … yeah, but it … will be difficult.” Axel chuckled weakly. He then lifted he head up to see Roxas, showing that his black eyes had completely disappeared. He then pointed to his chest, “Just remember … you do … have half of his heart.”
“I do!? But Naminé told me I had … someone else’s heart.” Roxas answered with surprise and confusion.
“She never did … get to tell you … everything. It seems that … you have a heart of your own but … it seems that … you carry half of … Sora’s as well.” Axel struggled to explain. Lightly, he put a hand on Roxas’ shoulder, “Please, Roxas … can you do me a favour?”
“Anything …” Roxas replied with a nod, feeling pain welling up inside him.
“Whatever … you do … do not get … erased …” Axel struggled to say the last words. “I’m thankful … I got to … see my best friend … one last time.”
Just before his body disappeared, he showed off a slight but truthful smile. He was finally happy.
The darkness overwhelmed Axel, leaving no trace of him left. Roxas just knelt there, gazing towards where Axel used to be. He felt Axel’s hand slip away from his shoulder. Axel was gone. Roxas didn’t move. He refused to move for a moment. After a while, Riku slowly stepped forward to his side, feeling sorry for him.
“Roxas … are you okay?” He asked cautiously.
Roxas took in a deep, meaningful breath and got to his feet carefully and shakily.
“Yeah … we best move on.” He nodded, but hid his eyes from Riku’s view.
Riku just about saw a tear drop from his face, falling to the floor. Riku sighed, wishing he had his memory back so that he had a better understanding on how Roxas was feeling.
But just as when they began to head towards the next door, the room suddenly shook like an earthquake, rumbling violently. Both Roxas and Riku tried their best to keep their own balance, but it was close to impossible. Just at that moment, black smoke began to circle around them like a tornado.
“W-What’s going on!?” Riku called out in terror, squinting his eyes in the oncoming darkness.
“I don’t know, just be careful!” Roxas answered loudly, shielding his eyes from the smoke.
Suddenly, both of them flew up into the air, disappearing from sight into the darkness above.
Next thing they knew, they had returned to the Dome room, right in front of the 4 doors. The door with the chain symbol suddenly began to chain itself up tight. Large chains crossing over to door, refusing to allow any access into the rooms both Roxas and Riku had just been in.
“Wha..?” Roxas slurred, struggling shakily to his feet, gazing towards the locked up door. “What about Xigbar, Luxoid, Sïax, and Xemnas? Weren’t we meant to fight them too?”
“Well, best be thankful we’re not going to.” Riku answered, shaking his head to gain his sight back. “What do we do now?”
Roxas stood there, completely confused by what just happened to them. He then turned to the next door: The Sword. What challenge would await them this time?
“This should be the next door we go through.” Roxas confirmed, studying it carefully. “I think.”
“Well, we wouldn’t know until we try.” Riku commented with a light shrug.
Roxas grasped hold of the door with the sword symbol, but hesitated for a moment.
“Is something wrong?” Riku curiously asked him, wondering why he halted.
“It’s just … what both Naminé and Axel told me.” Roxas answered lowly, feeling the heart beat inside his chest. “Whose heart is it that I carry?”
Riku shrugged, “I don’t know, this whole thing is just gibberish to me.”
“Heh … thanks for the input, Riku.” Roxas chuckled, having his spirits lift slightly.
He then pushed open the doors, and headed in, Riku followed from behind.
Then suddenly, as the doors slammed shut, the room lit up in a flash. Both Roxas and Riku’s jaws dropped when they caught sight of what they had now entered in. It was no arena. It had been the remains of a battlefield! There was no ceiling, but a golden yellow sky. Roxas and Riku began to examine the plain wasteland; thousands of Keyblades were wedged in the dusty ground, battered and broken. The whole area was haunting; it felt as though ghosts were ready to jump out at you. Roxas took one step further, but then swiftly turned around. The door had disappeared! They were trapped in the dead battlefield.
“How do we get out?” Riku asked cautiously, gazing towards where the door used to be.
“I’m sure there must be a way to get back. The symbol of the door showed a Blade of a Sword, while the phrase connected to it stated, ‘The Blade has been shattered’.” Roxas recited, recapping from when he read the poem from behind Xaphire’s Throne.
Roxas continued to examine the battlefield. Was this what it meant by the Blade shattering? Was it the remains of a forgotten War? But what was it they had to do to continue on further? The questions kept on popping up in Roxas’ mind, refusing to disappear.
Roxas then sighed, feeling that this whole situation they were in was nuisance. But then, as Roxas began to explore the place, flashes of images appeared clearly in his head. The Images showed the battlefield, same as it stood now. But he saw images of various warriors fighting: Xigbar was there fighting against someone, but in different garments and a slightly younger, healthier look. There had been a boy in black, dark, gloomy garments and a round helmet, battling directly against Roxas. And then, there had been a strong, brown-haired young man and a beautiful, blue-haired youthful girl standing tall right by his side, protecting him in some way. Roxas clutched his head tightly, not knowing how or why these images were suddenly appearing. The last image he caught sight of had been a horrid-looking, eerie, bald man reaching for a heart-shaped blue moon high above in the sky. After that, the images disappeared from his mind. Roxas steadily opened his eyes, catching sight of the battlefield he was now standing in.
“That was … random.” Roxas stated cautiously, breathing heavily.
Somehow, part of him felt like he knew those warriors very well, as though they were a family to him. The events that took place in the images also seemed to feel as if they happened sometime within Roxas’ past. But Roxas knew that those events were not from his own past! So, had the event in those images originate from the original bearer of the heart inside of Roxas?
All that Roxas could do though was just shake his head with confusion.
“Roxas! Come over here and check this out!” Riku suddenly called out to him from afar.
Roxas noticed Riku kneeling down, examining an object of some sort. He began to rush over towards Riku, dropping to his knees to check out what Riku found once he arrived. He had then been surprised to see a unique-looking amulet of some kind, buried slightly in the dust. It seemed to have the shape of a star, shaded green and with a metal plating round the edges. The Amulet also had a heart-shaped metal in the middle, gleaming of the reflected light rays from the sky. Roxas picked it up from the ground and took a good look at it.
“What do you think it could be?” Riku asked him curiously, gazing upon the Amulet with wonder.
“I think this is … a Wayfinder Amulet.” Roxas answered back in a wondrous tone.
Roxas didn’t know where the name of the Amulet came from, but it just seemed to have appeared from the back of his mind.
Just as Roxas answered, the sky unexpectedly turned as dark as night. Roxas and Riku looked at each other in shock and confusion and then turned back to gaze towards the sky. Then both their eyes suddenly widened with horror and jaws dropped once again in realisation. The WHOLE sky had filled up with countless of Heartless falling towards their position! From the simple Shadows to Great Behemoths; all of these Heartless were the opponents Roxas and Riku had to defeat! Thousands upon thousands of enemy Heartless dropped to the ground around Roxas and Riku, eyes locked onto them as targets from every direction possible. Roxas and Riku cautiously rose up to their feet with disbelief showing across their faces.
“This is just … INSANE!!!” Roxas bellowed out in horror, grasping tightly onto the Wayfinder Amulet.
There had been no way out of this situation, they had to fight these Heartless! Roxas and Riku hastily summoned out their Keyblades, preparing to attack the surrounding Heartless. Roxas and Riku then nodded to each other with confidence, knowing this had to be done. Knowing they were ready, Roxas and Riku both leaped swiftly towards the Army of Heartless, grasping tightly on their Keyblades, unleashing the first moves.


Comments (0)

You are not authorized to comment here. Your must be registered and logged in to comment