Notes: I seem to have lost my mojo on this one. Hopefully it will come back to me eventually.
Riku was fascinated by college. He'd always loved learning although Sora had little patience for it. But even Sora was enjoying himself. They'd registered early enough that they were able to take the same few basic classes together, although Kairi had opted to take a dance class for her PE requirement, while the boys had signed up for something called “Tae Kwon Do,” which was a fighting style they'd never heard of before. And, while they hoped the peace they'd restored would be a lasting one, they had no illusions. As long as there was darkness in men's hearts, there lived the possibility that somebody could try to conquer the universe again.
Sora and Riku were at their first Tae Kwon Do class. They'd had to buy special uniforms for the class, and were being shown by the instructor the proper way to tie the special belts.
“Do you think it'll be hard to learn?” Sora asked Riku as they waited for the class to begin.
“No harder than any other training we've gone through,” Riku said. “No harder than the training Philoctetes put you through in the Colosseum.”
The instructor put them in even lines, and showed them proper stances. They were shown the basic straight punch, and instructed to yell loudly during each thrust. Both Sora and Riku thought that this might be their easiest class, and before long they were done for the day.
“So, do you have any more classes today?” Sora asked Riku.
“Nope,” Riku answered with a smile. “Let's go get some food.”
The two boys made their way to the cafeteria and met up with Kairi on the way there. They looked at the people around them. Both Riku and Sora found their eyes drawn to a small blonde girl, who moved with real grace.
“I think that girl is a warrior,” Riku said. “She has grace and strength in her movements, and she looks around surreptitiously like she's on guard for trouble. The way she moves reminds me of Aerith.”
“Yeah,” Sora agreed, “I can see that. Maybe we should introduce ourselves to her and her friends. Part of the reason we went away to college was to make new friends.”
“Definitely,” Kairi agreed. “Besides, they look nice, and I think the redhead with her is a witch. I can see magic around her, like with my roommate Tara.”
“Just remember, keep our secret identities secret,” Riku warned Sora.
“I know, I know.”
“There is definitely something strange about them,” Riku murmured as they approached the other three students. “They all have strange power about them, but I don't think they're bad.”
Kairi knew enough to trust Riku's judgment of character. Riku's eyes couldn't lie.
“Do you know them?” Oz asked Buffy and Willow, pointing at the three people who were watching them: a tall boy with silvery blonde hair, a shorter boy with spiky brown hair and a waifish redhead.
“No,” Willow said, “but there's something about them.”
“Yeah,” Buffy agreed. “I don't think they're evil, but I think they have power.”
“They smell strange,” Oz said, “Even from over here. They smell almost like lightening, or one of those meteor rocks at the museum. They smell like they've been through the atmosphere.”
“It looks like they're coming over here,” Willow said, as the other three students approached their table. “Remember, Buffy, secret identity.”
“I know,” Buffy said.
“Hello, may we join you?” the taller boy asked.
“Sure,” Buffy said. “It's college, time to make new friends, right?”
“Exactly,” the little redheaded girl said. She was several inches shorter than Willow. “I'm Kairi, this is Sora and Riku.”
“I'm Willow, this is Buffy, and Oz,” she introduced, making sure to hold Oz's hand in her own, a silent claim of territory.
“Are you freshmen too?” Buffy asked.
“Yeah,” Sora said.
“So, where are you from?” Willow asked as the group sat down at the table with their food trays.
“We're from a tiny place,” Riku said. “An island chain known as the Destiny Islands. You won't have heard of them.”
“Nope,” Willow said. “We're local, but decided to move into the dorms anyway. Except Oz, he lives in a house with the rest of his band.”
“You're in a band?” Sora asked.
“Yep,” Oz nodded.
“You pick your majors yet?” Willow asked. The three new kids shook their heads.
“As yet undeclared,” Kairi said.
“Hey, are you guys in Psych 101 with us?” Buffy asked finally. She'd been trying to place these guys since she saw them in the dining hall.
“Yeah,” Sora said. “I think so.”
They made small talk for a while. Kari thought Willow was a really interesting person, and Buffy thought Sora was kind of cute. He reminded her of Xander, but less Xander-like. Neither Riku nor Oz spoke much, but nobody seemed to mind. Eventually the group split up and went their separate ways. Buffy spotted a boy she'd met earlier and got into a conversation, and he walked her home. Sora and Riku walked Kairi back to her dorm.
“I'm all twitchy,” Sora said. “I'm bored.”
“Want to go for a run?” Riku suggested.
“Sure,” Sora agreed.
The two started running down a bike and jogging path that led off the campus and into a park. The sun was setting while they ran, and the stars were starting to come out. They ran several miles, trying to burn off the excess energy they often felt. Being here made them restless. They managed to run to the nearest beach, and rested when got to the beach, sitting back on the sand and watching the stars.
“I wonder which one is home,” Sora asked, looking up at the sky.
“I can never tell,” Riku said. “You know, this place reminds me a lot of Twilight Town.”
“I was thinking that myself,” Sora smiled.
“I don't know what I'd do without you, Sora,” Riku said. “During that dark time, when my body was rebelling against me, and my thoughts were dark, keeping you in my heart kept me going.”
“Searching for you was what kept me going,” Sora said. “I knew that Kairi was okay, because of the time our hearts were one, but I didn't know where you were. Looking for you was what let me focus on my mission. Every world I landed on, I hoped I would find you.”
“Our hearts found each other again,” Riku said. He turned to look at Sora's face, and smiled.
“Let's start running back again,” Sora said. “I have some homework to do.”
“Me too,” Riku said. As they ran through the park, they noticed creatures that reminded them of nobodies. They had bodies, and still looked mostly human, but there was an emptiness in their hearts, a darkness. Their faces were deformed and they were attacking a teenage girl who was walking her dog in the park. The boys didn't even think about it; in seconds their keyblades were in their hands. They fought their enemies.
“Stabbing them doesn't seem to have any effect,” Sora said.
“Aha,” Riku said, “Try decapitating them.”
The two boys fought together with lightning reflexes, comfortable in each others' presence. They fought better as a team than they did individually. Eventually all the creatures were piles of dust. Riku and Sora offered to walk the girl and her dog home, and then made it back to their dorm room. They had an odd feeling they were being watched, but they didn't see anyone following them.