As Seen In Part 4...
“So much thinking to do,” Xemnas mumbled, with one hand on his forehead, “Hmm.” He turned and strode down the stairs, unobtrusively. As he turned the corner, there was another flight of stairs that led to a bigger chamber. There, illuminated in the moonlight, was his answer.
He gazed in awe and wonder at a majestic machine, "How could I have not thought of this before?" He questioned himself. It was a perfectly designed machine, majestic and powerful. Built with a chamber as if to hold something, it was yellow and purple, with a tip that looked as deadly as ever it could look. Axel returned from where he had left the Queen and appeared in the doorway. Shocked, he asked, "What is that?"
"It's the Reclaimer, built by Ansem the Wise himself."
Axel gaped, "You don't mean that's the machine he tried to destroy Kingdom Hearts with, do you? I thought it had exploded along with its creator. How did you manage to reassemble it?"
"You recall, months back when I did not allow anyone to enter my chamber? That was when I was reassembling the pieces that I had found. Now that it is fully rebuilt, what do you think I will do with this contraption?"
"I haven't got a clue," Axel said with impatience.
"The reclaimer was built to capture hearts and hold them in this lower chamber, here," he indicated with his long arms. "It was originally meant to take hearts from the kingdom itself, but, obviously, Ansem did not understand the full cabability of what this machine can do. It was called the Reclaimer because it was reclaiming lost hearts held inside the kingdom. Now, if this machine can take hearts away from Kingdom Hearts, we should be able to use it on certain... Individuals...."
The side of Axel's mouth twitched into a crooked smile for a brief instant.
The King's eyes flickered open, closed again, and then completely opened to asess his new surroundings. He was lying under the shelter of some buildings. It was completely dark, but he heard low voices somewhere off in the distance. His head was pounding like a jackhammer, but that faded away after a while.
"Sora I still think that you shouldn't have done that," Donald persisted.
"Look, Donald, I regret it, I wish I hadn't done it, and I'll never do it again, okay?"
"Sora, don't be to hard on yourself. Our job is to protect him, even from himself at times. Man oh man, is he gonna be mad when he wakes up," Goofy shuddered.
"Wait," Donald whispered, "I think he IS awake."
Goofy and Donald ran over and knelt beside the King, while Sora hesitantly walked behind.
"Your Majesty! You're awake," Goofy cried.
They both hugged him simultaneously, and then leaned back to give him space. Mickey looked at them both, shaking his head, "What happened? I can't remember a thing," and then Mickey saw Sora poke his head above Donald's and Goofy's with a sheepish and apologetic grin on his face,"Hehe... Hi, your Majesty," he gulped, "how're you doing?"
Mickey quickly recalled what had happened and tried to leap up on his feet. Donald and Goofy gasped and leaned forward to pin him down, while Mickey gave in and let them. He looked at both of them, "Thanks, fellas, but I'm okay now." They both nodded and let him up. Mickey walked over to Sora, nonchalantly, arms crossed, "Sora... I'm going to ask this as clearly as possi-"
"I'm sorry I did that to you!" Sora ejaculated in a babble of words, "You're our leader and I was only thinking of what was best for you. If I had let you in there, I wasn't sure if you'd come back and we need to think things through before we leap into action and... and..."
"Sora! I am not mad at you. You are absolutely right. I made a massive mistake and I shouldn't have acted the way I did. You must understand that the thought of my wife in danger made me react in such a way. Kings make mistakes too and sometimes they need a friend to set them straight. You would do me a great favor if you would accept my apology."
"Of course, your Majesty, you're a good friend that I'd never want to lose. I hope I didn't hurt you."
"No, I'm alright, but we need to formulate a rescue mission for my wife immediately."
"We're all for it! Whatever it takes to get her back here safely!" Sora agreed.
"Yeah! For Queen Minnie!" Goofy and Donald cried.
Axel stepped closer to take a better look at the Reclaimer, "So, this is our ticket to Kingdom Hearts huh?"
"It's our ticket to victory, Axel. How are we doing on numbers?"
Axel pretended to count invisible numbers on his fingers, "Well, we still have Xaldin, Demyx, Luxord, Xigbar, Larxene, you, and myself. Out there is Sora, Donald, Goofy, and... the King. That counts as four, and we have seven. So the odds are 7 to 4. We probably have an immense chance of winning, along with this big hunk of metal right here."
"Good...," Xemnas whispered, "There is not one possible chance that we could lose, but didn't Luxord and Xigbar die by the King's keyblade not to long ago?"
"They didn't die," Axel corrected, "they just faked it. That is an advantage for us, because they won't be expecting it."
"All the more promising..."
Axel was about to leave when Xemnas turned towards the door, "Axel," he called.
Axel reluctantly turned once again, "Yes?"
Xemnas ordered, "Tell everyone to prepare for battle. I sense the time will soon be upon us."
"Sure thing," Axel said, and then disappeared like a shadow down the stairs.
In complete silence, the four friends stood around in a circle, racking their brains for a tactical plan. Sora looked about and then broke the silence, "This shouldn't be too difficult. They have five and we are four so they have an advantage of one. One doesn't really make much of a difference does it?"
"Maybe, but also maybe not. If they were to attack one by one, sure we could take them, but... If they were to attack in a group... That's going to cause problems," The King caculated. Sora, Donald, and Goofy continued to talk strategy, when suddenly the King, unobtrusively, sat down and started writing on a parchment of paper.
"Your Majesty? What are you doing?" Donald asked.
"I am writing a letter for you to deliver, if you please."
"Sure, but what for?"
"I want you to deliver this same letter to some close friends, including, Riku, the Beast, Hercules, Simba, Jack Skellington, and Jack Sparrow. The numbers are to close for me to call 'safe'. One of us would almost definitely be hurt if we tried, right now, in our condition."
"That's pretty smart," Sora added, "but how are they going to find Riku?"
"I understand that he is staying in Hollow Bastion right now."
"Cool, so that's where you guys will go okay?"
"You can count on us, Your Highness," Donald stated. Goofy saluted, "We won't let you down, Your Excellency." And with that, they marched off.
"Come Sora, we shall survey the perimeter of the castle and see if there is any less suspicious way in."
Axel approached the members of the Organization, looking tired and completely uninterested. They all stood around, chatting and laughing about malice. He stood against the wall, looking bored, where Larxene talked with Luxord and Xigbar, the two that had previously fought with the King, "So... You two fought the mouse?"
Xigbar looked at her with smug bravado, "Yeah, and he's not as tough as everyone says he is. I was all 'Hey mousey, you ready to be trampled?' and he was all, 'Oh please, Mister Xigbar, don't hurt me. I'm just a poor little mouse with a key,' and I was all-"
Larxene cut him off, "YOU LIE! I can tell when someone is lying and you are a terrible liar. That mouse has got stuff and I wouldn't want to be the one to get in his way, ESPECIALLY because we have his little Queen captive, HAH!" She snorted.
"Yes you are quite correct in your analysis," Luxord interceded, "he was like an arrow from a bow, that one. My cards of gamble could not even touch him."
"Oh yes, I cannot even comprehend how your little papercut-giving pieces of paper could lose to HIM," she said incredulously.
"You might not be so smug if you battled him yourself, Larxene. Your long nails of doom would not even make so much as a small scratch against him."
Axel had waited for some while and then decided to intercede, "Ladies and gentlemen, our leader has just proposed that we all prepare for battle."
Demyx grimaced, "Battle? Are you sure?"
"Yes, I'm completely sure, my dull witted friend."
"Uugh! Do we have to?" Larxene whined.
"Yes, whether you'd like to or not, after all, Xemnas is our boss."
"Hmph..." Demyx huffed, "Well, I'm just going to stay out of it, kay?" and he tried to slink away.
"Ohhhh, no you don't!" Larxene yelled and grabbed the hood of his cloak.
"Ouch! That hurt! You nearly cut off my circulation!"
"You're such a whiner! Grow up will ya?" Larxene taunted.
Axel laughed and turned to stride away from it all.
Donald and Goofy opened the door to the Gummi ship and leapt inside.
"All systems check," Goofy cried.
"Ready for take off, in 5...4...3...2...," Donald yelled and the Gummi ship blasted into a worm hole without a sound. Donald checked the gauges and shouted, "First stop, Hollow Bastion!"
LOOK FOR PART 6 COMING SOON...
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