Kingdom Hearts: Chronicles Throughout Equestria and Beyond

by snivygamer97

First published

The Mane 6 and Spike help Sora, Kairi, and friends save the worlds from darkness.

Things have gone strangely for our heroes to be. Not only has Nightmare Moon returned, but the land of Equestria has been corrupted by some dark creatures by the Heartless. Working together with Sora, Kairi, Donald, and Goofy, hopefully the worlds can all be saved before it is too late.

The End of the World

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“Oh no... Nightmare Moon!” Much to Twilight’s horror as her brother Spike fainted, Nightmare Moon had returned. She had hoped that, like Celestia said, it was nothing more than an old pony’s tale. However, here she was. As real as could be, and there was no telling what she was going to do now.

“Oh, my beloved subjects. It's been so long since I've seen your precious little sun-loving faces,” Nightmare Moon greeted the ponies of Ponyville spitefully, who were all confused and scared.

“What did you do with our Princess?!” Rainbow Dash demanded as she was about to rush the ancient alicorn, only for Applejack to grab her by the tail.

“Whoa there, Nelly…,” Applejack said, muffled.

Nightmare Moon proceeded to chuckle evilly, “Why, am I not royal enough for you? Don't you know who I am?”

“Ooh, ooh, more guessing games! Um, Hokey Smokes! How about... Queen Meanie! No! Black Snooty, Black Snooty—,” Pinkie Pie guessed before Applejack put a snack into Pinkie’s mouth to silence her and avoid enraging the threatening alicorn.

“Does my crown no longer count now that I have been imprisoned for a thousand years?” Nightmare Moon questioned in annoyance as she got close to the terrified Fluttershy. Almost as quickly, Nightmare Moon changed gears and went over to Rarity. “Did you not recall the legend? Did you not see the signs?”

“I did. And I know who you are. You're the Mare in the Moon – Nightmare Moon!” Twilight revealed her knowledge of the threat, causing the ponies present to gasp as they realized who she was.

“You mean to tell me that this is that same jerk that Nightmare Night is centered around?” Rainbow Dash was confused.

“Apparently,” Applejack noted, muffled.

“Well well well, somepony who remembers me. Then you also know why I'm here,” Nightmare Moon responded to Twilight’s apparent knowledge.

“You're here to... to…,” Twilight gulped as she lost her nerve, remembering that Nightmare Moon was overpowering compared to her.

“Remember this day, little ponies, for it was your last. From this moment forth, the night will last forever!” Nightmare Moon confidently laughed evilly as she summoned a bunch of thunder. Suddenly, before Nightmare Moon could continue, a bunch of strange shadow creatures suddenly appeared on the scene. “Wait a second. What are these strange creatures?”

“You’re telling me you don’t know? Aren’t they part of your evil army or something?” Rainbow Dash questioned.

“It looks like things may be getting worse, Spike,” Twilight nervously whispered.

“Why, of course they’re mine,” Nightmare Moon lied.

“Really? For a moment I believed you were a solo act,” Rainbow Dash taunted.

“Don’t get on her bad side!” Applejack muffled.

“Grr! Why I’ll get you for that, you fool!” Nightmare Moon cried out. In an instant, the shadow beings began to rush at Rainbow Dash, who proceeded to break free from Applejack’s hold and punched some of them. It took a few hits, but some of them were able to be destroyed.

“Ha! Take that you evil shadow thingies!” Rainbow yelled out, not realizing that some more had popped up behind her. Before they could attack Rainbow, Applejack got in some kicks that destroyed them.

“First of all, thingies is kinda a weak term for these monsters. Second, I’d rather we save every innocent pony before they get killed or eaten or whatever is these creature’s deal.” At this, Applejack kicked another creature.

As Rainbow Dash punched and destroyed another of the creatures, Pinkie Pie suddenly noted, “Whoa! These mean old guests of Nightmare Moon’s just keep coming, don’t they?”

“You know, helping us fight them would be nice!” Rainbow yelled out in annoyance as she created a mini tornado around a few of the creatures.

“Oh, I got it! Party cannon, fire!” Pinkie cried out as she shot a bunch of high pressure confetti at some of the creatures, causing them to disappear… only for more to replace them immediately.

“Hmm… Just what are these creatures anyway?” Nightmare Moon wondered.

“You mean the Heartless, my dear little girl’s toy?” A strange sickly green pony asked as they appeared from darkness.

“So, you are the one who summoned these new minions for me to control. Also, I’d suggest you pick your next words carefully unless you wanna end up a black mark on the floor,” Nightmare Moon warned the pony with a murderous glare.

“Oh, I’m sorry my dear princess. I didn’t realize that I was dealing with the Princess of the new world,” The pony apologizes.

“Hmm… So, I have to ask, who are you and what are you doing here? I can deal with these pathetic ponies on my own,” Nightmare Moon boasted.

“The name’s Maleficent. And I’m here to make you an offer you can’t refuse.”

“Go on.”

“Why rule just this pathetic world when you can rule over multiple kingdoms with me and my council. We plan on ruling over this and many other worlds once we locate the ultimate power. Kingdom Hearts! All I need is your help and we can make that dream a reality.”

Nightmare Moon looked interested for a moment before her eyes glared as sharp as knives. “I don’t like working with others. But, the idea of ruling over more than just Equestria does interest me. And I can make my glorious night last forever everywhere. I’m in. Where do we start?”

At this point Maleficent smiled. “Perfect! You don’t know this yet, but this world’s heart has been found by the Heartless and is currently being devoured. We only have a few minutes left before all is lost. Come. We have much to do and to discuss.” At this point, she opened up another Corridor of Darkness. Maleficent walked in, with Nightmare Moon following shortly after. She was somewhat disappointed that Equestria had to fall so soon, but the thought of all the other worlds she could conquer made her smile.

Meanwhile, Twilight was stuck in a state of shock and fear over Nightmare Moon’s return. “She came back. And she won already. If only I found out about the Elements of Harmony. Maybe I could have stopped her.”

Rarity had just gotten back down to the ground floor and was ready to join the fight. She quickly noticed that Twilight was looking scared. She wanted to believe the best in Twilight. After all, she seemed to be a very nice pony. But she also seemed to know more than anyone else present. She was about to ask Twilight why and hopefully help her out as well when suddenly, a dark tornado formed and started to suck in everyone and everything.

Twilight tried to form a small barrier around herself only to be sucked in almost immediately.

Rainbow Dash found herself to be the last remaining pony, having used her speed to try and get away from the tornado. Eventually, however, her speed failed her and she was absorbed like everyone and everything else.
______________________________________________________________________________

On a bright sandy beach, the sun shines warmly on the same spiky-haired boy, who opens his sleepy eyes and sits up. He yawns, starting to lay back down again, when suddenly a girl’s face appears in his line of sight.

“Whoa!” The boy jumps back up and turns around, kneeling in the sand. The girl giggles, hovering over him. “Gimme a break, Kairi.”

“Sora, you lazy bum. I knew that I'd find you snoozing down here,” Kairi teasingly commented.

“No! This huge, black THING swallowed me up! I couldn't breathe! I couldn't--,” Before Sora could continue, Kairi proceeded to smack him. “Ow!”

“Are you still dreaming?” Kairi jokingly asked.

“It wasn't a dream! Or was it? I don't know,” Sora was uncertainly pondering. He looks off toward the ocean, seeing the clouds billow in the sky. “What was that place? So bizarre…”

“Yeah, sure,” Kairi sarcastically jokes as she walks past him toward the water.

“Say, Kairi, what was your hometown like? You know, where you grew up,” Sora asked out of curiosity as Kairi stared out into the sea.

“I've told you before, I don't remember.”

“Nothing at all?”

“Nothing.”

“You ever want to go back?”

Kairi thinks for a second before responding, “Hmm. Well, I'm happy here.”

“Really…”

“But you know... I wouldn't mind going to see it.”

“I'd like to see it too. Along with any other worlds out there. I wanna see 'em all!”

Kairi faces Sora as she asks, “So what're we waiting for?”

“Hey!” They turn to see a silver-haired boy wearing a blue and yellow outfit named Riku, carrying a log. “Aren't you guys forgetting about me? So, I guess I'm the only one working on the raft.” He tosses the log to Sora, who falls over with a yelp, and walks over to Kairi. “And you're just as lazy as he is!”

“So you noticed. Okay, we'll finish it together,” Kairi decides with a giggle. She jumps up and down as Riku sits down next to Sora. “I'll race you!”

“Huh?” Sora is confused.

Riku replies, “What, are you kidding?” Riku knows that his friend Kairi isn’t the fastest. After all, she hasn’t spent time trying to get stronger like Sora and especially himself. However, he does like proving his strength to Sora, so he decided to agree to race.

Kairi giggles, “Ready? Go!”

Sora and Riku glance at each other before leaping up and racing across the beach. They smile at each other as Kairi follows them, still giggling, even as she is a fair distance behind the two.

And so, the trio began to look for pieces to build their raft. Kairi began by looking for logs on the smaller island that could be accessed by a wooden bridge. She found a few logs, but she also saw a strange blue pony with wings and and a rainbow lightning bolt mark on her flank as well as a purple unicorn with several stars on her flank. Concerned for the strange creatures, Kairi shook the blue pony to try and wake her up. After a minute of shaking, she heard the pony mutter, “Five more minutes.” Kairi was surprised to hear the pony talk, but she didn’t have time to think about that as the pony woke up. “Man. I just had the strangest and craziest dream. Some dark creatures showed up with that Nightmare Moon and attacked me, my friends, and some other innocent ponies before a dark tornado sucked us all up.” The pony then turned her head and noticed Kairi and was left surprised to see her, but also fearful though she hid it well. “Who in the world are you?”

“My name is Kairi,” Kairi responded. “I must say, I haven’t seen anything like you before. Are you a horse?”

Rainbow grew a little irritated at this remark. “Hey! I’m not a horse! I’m a pony! A pegasus to be specific!”

“Oh, sorry. I’ve read about some strange creatures before but I haven’t seen everything yet. So, what kind of world did you come from?” Kairi asked curiously.

“What world? There is more than just Equestria? Well, I come from the land of Equestria. There are many different creatures that live where I am from, but the main species of where I come from are ponies like me. But that’s not important right now,” Rainbow Dash explained.

It was at this point that Twilight was starting to wake up as well. “Spike? I just had the worst nightmare. Nightmare Moon turned out to be real and destroyed everything with these dark creatures and…,” Twilight said as she opened her eyes and saw Kairi, much to her shock. “Aaaaah! What are you supposed to be?! Well, no offense,” Twilight apologized.

“Uh…I’m a human being named Kairi,” Kairi answered.

“Okay? Never heard of a human before. I mean, I’ve read many books about countless different creatures but never did I see anything like you,” Twilight was amazed before she went back to looking stressed. “Listen, what do you know about Nightmare Moon? How did she not manage to get rid of the sun here while she did so back in Equestria?”

“I don’t know who this Nightmare Moon is, but I have a feeling she is bad news,” Kairi admitted.

“She is! She did something to our princess and said she was going to make the night last forever! If she doesn’t get stopped, who knows what will happen?!” Rainbow Dash said. “But, tell me this, Miss Sparkle. Why should we trust you? I mean, I thought you were cool at first, but you also knew more than you were letting on and was the only one to recognize Nightmare Moon on sight! What are you?! A spy sent by Nightmare Moon to stop us from defeating her?!” Rainbow demanded before Kairi pushed her aside.

“Listen, Rainbow Dash, I know you are concerned. But I believe that Twilight is innocent. Am I right?” Kairi asked Twilight.

“Yes. Honestly, I was planning to look for a way to put a stop to Nightmare Moon. There’s a book back at my home in Canterlot that said that she was defeated once before by Princess Celestia. However, she had to use something called the Elements of Harmony to do it. But… I don’t know what they are or where to find them,” Twilight admitted.

“Oh…sorry to misjudge you, Twi. So, Elements of Harmony, huh? You think this place has any of that egghead knowhow so you can tell us what to do?” Rainbow Dash wondered.

“Again, the book on it is back in Equestria, and I don’t know if there even is an Equestria after what happened with those shadow creatures,” Twilight responded, a bit snippy.

“Well, looks like there is a lot going on. I’m sorry for all that happened to you. Is there anything I can do to help you?” Kairi asked politely.

“I don’t think so. But, thanks anyway. Maybe there is a way to get back to Equestria, though,” Twilight said.

“So, anyway, since we haven’t asked yet, where did we end up? Like, what is this place?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“You’re in the Destiny Islands. It’s a pretty nice place to live. However, me and my friends are trying to find a way to visit new worlds like the world I came from. Anyway, I have to get going. I have to help finish our raft,” Kairi said as she turned to leave.

“Wait! Will this raft be able to help me get back to Equestria?” Twilight asked.

“Maybe?” Kairi asked a bit confused.

“Why? So, are you planning on going back to Equestria too then?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“I guess. I need to save Spike, the Princess, and everyone else from that tyrant Nightmare Moon!” Twilight answered. “Wait, too?”

“Listen here, Twilight, it’s like I said before. I’d never leave Ponyville or any part of Equestria hanging! Especially in such a bad time as this. You don’t have to do this alone. Let me help you,” Rainbow asked as she held out her hoof.

Twilight stood there for a good while, not sure what to think of Rainbow’s drive and courage. On the one hand, she wasn’t keen on making any new friends like Celestia and Spike seemed to think she should. Besides, she also didn’t want to endanger anyone else on what was clearly her journey. However, she may be in need of all the help she could get in order to stop Nightmare Moon and get back home. So, it was with these conflicted feelings that Twilight decided to bump Rainbow’s hoof. “Okay. You can help. But just until we get back to Equestria.”

“Perfect! So, Kairi, can we ride on your guys’s raft and find our way home?” Rainbow Dash casually asked.

“Well…Sure! I just need to tell Riku and Sora that we’ll have some additional pe-er-ponies on our trip. I’m pretty sure that when I tell them you come from another world they’ll be ecstatic and lert you come with us,” Kairi said as she picked back up her logs and started to walk off the platform and find her friends. “Let’s get going, girls.”
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As it turned out, both Riku and Sora were indeed happy to meet Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle. They weren’t able to do much talking at first because everyone was busy working on the raft. However, soon when everyone was able to get more work done on the raft to the point that it was pretty much finished apart from obtaining the food and water for the trip, everyone met up on the small island across the bridge and stared at the ocean. Sora, Twilight, and Kairi sit on the paopu tree as Riku leans against it, his arms folded. Rainbow, meanwhile, flew in the air right across from them.

“Whoa! So you’re really from another world?” Riku asked Rainbow, amazed upon seeing the foreign creature. “So, Rainbow Dash was it? How are things like…”

“What types of creatures are there in your world?” Sora bluntly asked Rainbow.

“Sora…,” Riku scolded, wanting to have asked his question.

“Um…so…what are these other creatures? I know we have other animals like dogs, cats, bunnies, fish…,” Rainbow Dash said as she struggled to come up with the names of creatures.

“I’ve read about many creatures. Apparently, Equestria and beyond are rich with life, from ponies of all types to majestic dragons and the rare zebra,” Twilight explained.

“Hey! I could have given an answer!” Rainbow yelled out, annoyed.

“No offense, but you were a bit slow on the answering,” Twilight said, much to Rainbow’s annoyance.

“Interesting. Maybe we can visit your world on our raft,” Riku said.

“Maybe. We need to get back soon. When we left, our world was under attack by some strange dark creatures. I can’t just abandon my home. Equestria needs me!” Rainbow Dash explained.

“You mean us, right?” Twilight reminded Rainbow.

“Right…us,” Rainbow awkwardly accepted.

“Are you a hero where you two come from?” Kairi and Sora curiously asked.

“To be perfectly honest…,” Rainbow began.

“Not really. We are just ordinary ponies where we come from. But hopefully we can still do something to save Equestria and these other worlds. I just hope everyone else is okay,” Twilight wished, worriedly.

“Hopefully, they are. So, Kairi's home is out there somewhere, right? Just like Rainbow’s and Twilight’s?” Sora asked as looks over at Riku. Kairi places her hands on her knees.

“Could be. We'll never know by staying here,” Riku answered.

“But how far could a raft take us?” Sora wondered.

“I don’t know. Hopefully it will take us back to Equestria somehow,” Rainbow Dash hoped.

“Or at least somewhere near Equestria. Still, I am confused how the sun is about to set. Back at home, the princess controls the sun and moon. Yet, here we are with the sun setting,” Twilight noted.

“You think that means the princess is alright and Nightmare Moon is sent back into the moon where she belongs?” Rainbow asked, pumped up.

“I don’t think so. Where we come from, the sun and moon aren’t controlled by magic. Though, I have to admit that sounds cool,” Sora admitted.

“Agreed! It’s like a fairytale,” Kairi agreed.

“Maybe. However, even if we don’t find Equestria or other worlds on the raft, we'll think of something else if we have to,” Riku said.

“So, suppose we get to another world,” Kairi began to ask as she giggled. “What would you do there?”
“Well, I haven't really thought about it,” Riku admitted. Sora rocks back and forth on the trunk of the tree.

“Wait, you haven’t? And you’re still trying to head off to other worlds? That sounds very reckless, even careless,” Twilight pointed out.

“I know. I know. Maybe I am being reckless. It's just... I've always wondered why we're here on this island. If there are any other worlds out there, which I guess is the case considering Rainbow Dash and Twilight are here, why did we end up on this one? And suppose there are other worlds... Then ours is just a little piece of something much greater. So we could've just as easily ended up somewhere else, right?” Riku revealed his reasoning to the trio.

“I don't know,” Sora said.

“Exactly. That's why we need to go out there and find out. Just sitting here won't change a thing. It's the same old stuff. So let's go,” Riku told his friends.

“So that is why you are wanting to go to another world. Well, one way or another you’ll be sure to find your answer while we’re on the open sea,” Rainbow Dash said supportively.

“Maybe we should plan things out a bit more first…,” Twilight warned.

“What? And allow Nightmare Moon to do more damage?” Rainbow argued, which silenced Twilight.

“Thanks,” Riku accepted the thumbs up from Rainbow Dash.

“You've been thinking a lot lately, haven't you?” Kairi asked Riku.

“Thanks to you. If you hadn't come here, I probably would've never thought of any of this. Kairi, thanks,” Riku thanked Kairi.

“You're welcome,” Kairi accepted the thanks.

“Wait. Kairi is from another world too? That sounds awesome,” Rainbow was amazed.

“Well, it’s getting late. We should head on back home. Twilight, Rainbow Dash, you can sleep somewhere here on this island, right?” Kairi asked. “I’d like to invite you back home, but I’d rather not risk any big trouble happening if everyone back home reacts poorly to you both.”

“Hey, I can sleep like a filly just about anywhere. I can get a good night’s sleep with ease,” Rainbow said, proving herself right away by landing on the paopu fruit tree and falling asleep on the tree.

“I guess I can try managing sleeping somewhere on this island…,” Twilight awkwardly accepted as she left to find a place to sleep.

“Well, see you guys later,” Sora said goodbye. The trio starts walking back to the dock. Kairi leads the way.

“Sora,” Riku called to his friend. Sora turns around and catches a star-shaped fruit that Riku threw to him. “You wanted one, didn't you?”

“A paopu fruit…,” Sora realized.

“If two people share one, their destinies become intertwined. They'll
remain a part of each other's lives no matter what,” Riku reminded Sora of the legend as he walks past Sora. “C'mon, I know you want to try it.”

“What are you talking--,” Sora asked as Riku laughs and Sora tosses the fruit away. They all run back to the dock and head for home.
______________________________________________________________________________

Meanwhile, in another world known as Disney Castle, Donald Duck the court wizard walks proudly through the Colonnade of Disney Castle, looking for the king’s throne room and passing a group of brooms carrying buckets. Donald stops in front of two enormous double doors that lead to the throne room. He clears his throat and knocks on the doors three times. A smaller door just his size opens and he walks through. “Good morning, Your Majesty,” Donald greets King Mickey. He walks down the long red carpet of the Audience Chamber toward a golden throne. “It's nice to see you this morn--.” Finally, Donald sees that the throne is empty. “What!”

All of a sudden, Pluto walks out from behind the throne, carrying an envelope in his mouth. Donald opens it and reads the letter. He blinks for a second, then suddenly speeds back out into the Colonnade. He races across the courtyard to where Goofy, Captain of the Royal Knights, is sleeping.

“Wake up, Goofy, wake up! This is serious!!” Donald yells, only for Goofy to not respond. Goofy continues to snore and Donald’s temper gets the better of him. He points his finger into the air, yelling, and summons a lightning bolt, which swoops down and strikes Goofy in the side, jolting him awake. He sits up sleepily and looks around.

“Hey there, Donald. G'morning,” Goofy goodnaturedly greets his friend.

“We've got a problem, Goofy! But don't tell anyone…,” Donald warned.

“Queen Minnie?” Goofy asked, seemingly in response to Donald.

“Not even the queen,” Donald confirmed.

“Daisy?” Goofy asked, once again seemingly in response to Donald.

“No, it's top secret!” Donald yelled, shaking his head furiously.

“G'morning, ladies,” Goofy called over Donald’s shoulder.

“What?” Donald turns to see a cross Daisy, hands on her hips, and Queen Minnie. Daisy clears her throat and Donald laughs sheepishly.

“We were just looking for you two. We found a purple dragon unconscious just outside the castle,” Queen Minnie explained as she moved a little to show that Spike was with the duo. “He doesn’t know how he got here, but from what he could remember it seems like he went through a lot.”

“Trust me, I did. I don’t know where Twilight or the others ended up. I just hope that they are all okay. And Equestria as well,” Spike said.

“Anyways, what is it that you wanted us to be left in the dark about, Donald?” Daisy demanded from her special someone.

“Um, well…” Donald began.
______________________________________________________________________________

Rainbow Dash was sleeping like a filly on the paopu tree when suddenly she heard a voice.

“Well, well, well. What have we here? Looks like we’ve gotten one of the heroes to be of Equestria sleeping soundly on a tree on a foreign little island,” The cheerful voice said, making his appearance unknown to the pegasus.

“Huh? Who are you and what do you want?” Rainbow asked as she opened her eyes, annoyed at having been woken up. However, for some reason that she couldn’t explain, the area around here was muted gray with no color in anything around her. “Wait! Why is everything gray?! How do you know about Equestria?!”

“First off, I’d rather stay in the dark right now, so I’ll leave who I am up to your imagination. Second, it’s very simple, Skittles. With me, just about everything is common knowledge. As for the greyness, I can only appear in someone’s dreams like that Luna princess used to do. So, how else to show that you aren’t awake?” The voice explained.

“I’m… asleep still? Wait, Skittles? And who is Luna?”

“Correctamundo, Rainbow Dash. It’s a nickname for someone as awesome as you.”

“Um, thanks? Hold on a second. What are you doing here, and what do you want with me?”

“Isn’t it obvious, Skittles? I want to help you get back home and protect your home. How’s about you let me help you, huh? I only ask for a small favor in return,” The voice offered, his voice darkening and deepening for a brief moment as he said favor.

“You’d really be able to do that?” Rainbow Dash asked the voice.

“Sure! And, as a show of good faith I’ll even give you a gift. Here, have some fish scales.” In an instant, some scales were plucked off of the fish swimming in the water and placed in Rainbow Dash’s hoof.

“What the?! What is wrong with you?!” Rainbow Dash demanded the voice.

“Isn’t that the question of this century,” The voice responded. “So, go ahead and tell me yes already. I have things to do and people to see.”

“Look, I appreciate the offer, but I’d rather go and find help with Kairi, Sora, Twilight, and Riku. Together, we’ll find our way to Equestria,” Rainbow said.

“You really are loyal, aren’t you?”

“To the bitter end.”

“Well, fine. Have it your way. However, if you ever change your mind or want help with something else I’ll be here for you, Skittles,” The voice said before the grayness disappeared and the color returned to the island. It was now daytime and Rainbow could see Sora, Riku, and Kairi rowing over to the island. She considered telling them about her strange dream, but decided against it. After all, it wasn’t that important to let them in on this encounter, at least not yet.

The Adventure Begins and Traverse Town

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“Good morning you guys! So, how’s it hanging?” Rainbow Dash asked the trio as they walked back to the back of the island to head to the raft.

“We’re doing great, Rainbow!” Sora exclaimed. “What about you? Did you have a good night’s sleep?”

“Of course! Like there was ever any doubt!” Rainbow Dash answered.

“What about Twilight? Did she sleep well last night or…?” Kairi asked the pegasus.

“I don’t really know. To be honest, I pretty much stayed asleep until morning after I dropped off last evening. Should one of us go check on her?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“I can go look for her while I get my portion of the provisions for our trip,” Riku suggested as he was about to walk to the back half of the island. Before Riku could get there, however, Twilight walked up to the group, looking as though she had a poor night’s sleep. “Man, are you doing okay, Twilight? You look like you had a terrible night of sleep.”

“It’s fine. I’m just more used to having a good bed to sleep in. Roughing it out wasn’t as good as I’ve heard in books,” Twilight explained.

“Just give it some time and you’ll get used to sleeping out under the stars,” Rainbow suggested.

“Yeah! You’ll feel better about this as soon as you get more used to it. Heck, I’ve taken naps on the sand before,” Sora agreed.

“Yeah, and made building the rat take longer than it should have,” Riku teased.

“Hey!” Sora good-naturedly protested.

“So, what else do we need before we can take the raft and go?” Twilight asked.

“We’re almost ready. We just need to gather up provisions for the trip, which if we get done today means we can sail off tomorrow,” Riku answered.

“Awesome! With all of us working together we should have it done in no time flat!” Rainbow Dash exclaimed as the group arrived at the raft.

“Perfect! Rainbow Dash, you can help Sora with gathering his provisions. Let’s see. Sora and Rainbow, you’re looking for... Five Seagull Eggs, Twelve Mushrooms, Eight Coconuts, Nine Fish, and fill this up with Drinking Water. But not from the ocean!” Kairi reminded the duo as Kairi handed Sora the canteen. “Bring everything back here. If you need help, just ask.”

“Will do! So, obviously she was reminding us about getting fresh water because of you, right?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“How do you know it wasn’t you she was reminding? After all, brains haven’t been exactly your strongest trait so far,” Sora teased.

“What?! But I-,” Rainbow Dash cried out, only to begin chuckling after a good few seconds. “Nice one, Sora. Anyways, we should gather up everything and report back to Kairi.”

“You have a deal there, Rainbow,” Sora agreed as he shook her hoof.

And so, the duo went off to find the provisions they would need for their trip.

“Well, I guess I should go off and collect my provisions. Just tell me what I should get and I’ll…,” Twilight said as she began to walk off only for Riku to stop her.

“Look, Twilight, I can tell you’re pretty capable. But you obviously don’t know this island as well as we do, seeing as how you just got here yesterday,” Riku pointed out.

“Hey! That’s…true. So, what do you suggest?” Twilight asked.

“Come with me and I’ll get you your provisions. I’m mostly done with my own to be honest,” Riku said.

“Thanks, but no thanks. I can take care of myself,” Twilight denied the help only for Riku to step in front of her.

“Okay! But when you fail and need some help, don’t come crying to me,” Riku teased as he began to walk away, giving Twilight her list before he left.

Twilight looked away from Riku, ready to look for her own provisions without help. She started by going to a nearby coconut tree and wondered what she should do. She quickly decided to use her magic telekinesis to grab the coconuts. She had some trouble getting the coconuts down from the tree at first as she either underestimated the magic she needed and had trouble getting it down or used too much power and broke them. Eventually, however, she got enough power to get a coconut down safely. “Finally! Twilight one, tree zero!”

At this point, Riku, who was watching the scene from afar, finally decided to talk to Twilight. “You know, Twilight, that coconut you have there isn’t going to be good to eat,” Riku pointed out with a chuckle.

Twilight’s joy quickly turned to irritation.” Aw, come on! This is going to take forever!”

“Not if you accept my help,” Riku suggested.

“What happened to the “don’t come crying to me” bit?” Twilight asked.

“To be honest, I was joking. You’re starting to become my friend, and I would still give you my help. Besides, you kinda need it,” Riku said.

Twilight thought things over for a moment. To be honest, Twilight knew she needed help if she was to get the food she needed for the trip. However, she wasn’t entirely comfortable with the idea of becoming friends with Riku. After all, she didn’t need friends to help her out before and she didn’t need it now. But, she was desperate to get her provisions so she decided to accept the help she needed. “Okay. We’ll work together. But that means I’m gonna help too, understand?” Twilight agreed as she held out her hoof.

“Understood,” Riku said as he shook her hoof.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It took Rainbow and Sora about an hour, but they were able to find most of what they needed.

The duo brought most of the starting provisions back to Kairi, who was impressed with how quickly they were able to bring together all their provisions. “Great job you guys! Now all we need is another mushroom and we’ll be ready for our trip tomorrow! You even got fresh water instead of sea water!” Kairi teased.

“Thanks, Kairi. Anyways, I’ve looked over the entire island and I haven’t been able to find any more mushrooms,” Rainbow Dash explained.

“Well, to be fair, Twilight also needed some of the mushrooms seeing as how she is a vegetarian like you, Rainbow,” Kairi reminded.

“Fair enough. But this bites! Where are we gonna come up with another mushroom at?!” Rainbow demanded.

“Well, maybe we can do fine with what we have,” Kairi said.

“Hold on, Kairi! I don’t want my friend going hungry. Rainbow, there is the Secret Spot. We can always look there. I remember seeing signs of a mushroom growing a little while ago,” Sora pointed out.

“Perfect! You guys go look there!” Kairi said as she went back to a personal project.

Just as the two were about to head back to the Secret Spot, they ran into Riku and Twilight. “Hey, Sora, Rainbow Dash. How are you two doing with this whole provision collecting thing?” Riku asked.

“We’re almost done! We just need to find one more mushroom and we’ll be all good,” Sora answered.

“What about you guys? How are the both of you doing with collecting pro- food?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“It took the princess a while to accept help, but I think that we managed to get everything we needed,” Riku answered.

“Yeah, yeah. I’m sorry I didn’t accept the help earlier. But, just because I’m new to this place and a bunch of other stuff doesn’t mean I’m incapable. I’ve taken care of myself on my own mostly for years now,” Twilight said.

“Well, anyway, our raft still needs a name. Let's see... How about Highwind? What would you guys call it?”

“Me? Well...hm... Excalibur!” Sora exclaimed as he came up with a name.

“Yeah! I agree with Sora! We should call it Excalibur!” Rainbow Dash agreed.

“Well, Kairi was fine with the name I picked out, so I’d say we have a tie. We just need a tie breaker for the ship’s name. So, Twilight, what do you think?” Riku asked, much to the unicorn’s shock.

“Me? Well…to be perfectly honest, I don’t know what the name should be. You figure it out on your own,” Twilight decided.

“Okay then… Hey, how about…” Riku said.

“The usual?” Sora asked, realizing what Riku was thinking.

“Let's do it!”

Meanwhile, Kairi appears on the wooden bridge nearby. “You guys at it again? All right, I'll be the judge. The usual rules apply. Take any route you want... First one to tag that tree and make it back here wins,” Kairi reminded the duo of their race.

“Oh, a race?! Can I race too?” Rainbow Dash asked the pair.

“Sure thing! So, if I win, I'm captain! And if you win Riku…” Sora was deciding.

“I get to share the paopu with Kairi,” Riku suddenly said.

“Huh?” Sora was confused.

“Deal? The winner gets to share a paopu with Kairi,” Riku explained.

“Wha... Wait a minute…,” Sora was caught off guard.

“Hold on. What is the paopu fruit anyway?” Twilight asked curiously on the sidelines.

“I have no idea to be honest. Kairi?” Rainbow asked the red-head.

“It’s a special fruit that can bind the hearts of others if they share it. Okay, now! On my count!” Riku, Rainbow Dash, and Sora were ready to race “Three! Two! One! Go!” She slices through the air with her hand and both Sora and Riku race across the bridge. The two are neck and neck until one of the boards on the bridge collapses, sending Riku into the water. Sora takes this chance to run past the lookout tower and across the bridge. He runs up the hill towards the star tree, seeing Riku catching up to him, by jumping across the tops of the palm trees nearby. Sora quickly tags the tree and races back to the starting line. Sora throws a fist into the air in success.

“Now the score’s 1 to 1!” Sora cheered until he noticed that Rainbow Dash was already there before him. “Wait. How did…”

“Simple. I can fly really fast. In fact, there isn’t really many if any ponies or any other creatures that can outspeed me!” Rainbow Dash explained.

“Well, I still won against Riku, so yeah!” Sora was happy at the results in spite of being in second.

“Man, lighten up. It’s just a name, after all.” Riku teased, much to Sora’s frustration.

“Hey, Sora, if you don’t mind I would like to go with Rainbow Dash instead if you don’t mind,” Kairi decided, having changed her mind.

“Really? Well, okay. I’ll meet you guys back at the raft,” Sora agreed as he headed for the raft.

“Any particular reason you want to do that, Kairi?” Twilight politely asked.

“I just want to have the chance to talk to one of my new friends about stuff, that’s all. Besides, I’m pretty much done with getting my provisions and another project of mine, so why not?” Kairi answered.

“Okay…so what is this other project?” Twilight questioned.

“Well, I guess it wouldn’t hurt. See this? I’m making a necklace of thalassa shells. In the old days, sailors always wore thalassa shells. They were supposed to ensure a safe voyage,” Kairi answered as she holds the finished star-shaped charm out to the duo. I made one for our journey so that regardless of what happens, we’ll always find our way back to each other.”

“Well…That sounds pretty interesting. If we had more time I’d definitely like to learn more about the traditions of this island. But, for now I’ll settle for just this little bit,” Twilight said. “Good luck on finding your last mushroom!” Twilight then walked away back to the raft for the time being.

“So, Rainbow, how are things going with you?” Kairi curiously asked the blue pegasus as she began to lead them both to the Secret Spot.

“Things are going fine, I guess. I just want to find my friends and the other ponies of Ponyville is all. I’m kinda worried. I know they can take care of themselves, but these shadow creatures are something else. I don’t know if they’ll be okay or not when we find them,” Rainbow admitted.

“I wouldn’t worry. After all, between the five of us, we’ll find them and they’ll be fine,” Kairi comforted.

“Thanks, Kairi. I can’t believe we’re about to set sail out on the open sea. I hope you three will find it to your liking,” Rainbow Dash said.

“Don’t worry. We will.”

“So, are you just friends with Sora and Riku, or do you have feelings for one of them?” Rainbow bluntly asked.

At this, Kairi stopped before saying with a blush on her face. “Well… Both Sora and Riku are my best friends, but I’ve always had a bit of a crush on Sora for as long as I can remember. He can be a bit of a hassle and I do like to mess with him at times, but I do love him. I just don’t know if he returns these feelings. What about you? Do you have any crushes back at home?

“Well, don’t tell her I said so, but I do have a crush on Applejack from back at home. I don’t know when I started to feel this way, but I do,” Rainbow Dash answered.

“So we both have a crush, huh? Well, I wish you luck for it working out,” Kairi said.

“Thanks, you too,” Rainbow Dash said.

Kairi and Rainbow Dash enter the Secret Place and walk through an underground tunnel, with roots lining the walls. They two girls reached a room made of walled boulders with chalk drawings scrawled on them. The only light is from a small hole in the ceiling. Kairi sees the last mushroom Sora commented on near a wooden board in the wall and plucks it from the ground. Behind the mushroom is an old drawing of Kairi and Sora that brings memories flooding back to her. She kneels on the ground, placing a hand on the drawing of Sora with a soft smile. Her mind flashes back to the two of them as 5 year olds when they drew each other on the walls. Kairi sits, picking up a rock and begins carving. She stops and stares at her work. She is giving Sora a paopu fruit. Suddenly, she hears a noise behind her and stands up swiftly.

“Wh-who’s there?” Rainbow Dash demands.

“Yeah, and if you don’t mind, why are you here?” Kairi asked.

A mysterious figure in a brown cloak answers, “I’ve come to see the door to this world.”

“Huh?” Kairi and Rainbow were confused, both by what was said and who was saying it as they haven’t noticed the figure yet..
“This world has been connected,” The figure vaguely explains.

“Wh-What are you talking about?” Kairi asks, confused.

“Tied to the darkness... Soon to be completely eclipsed,” The figure refuses to answer clearly.

“Well, whoever you are, stop freaking me out like this!” Rainbow shoots back.

“Yeah! Who are you anyway? You don’t sound like anyone I’ve met on the islands,” Kairi wonders as she turns and sees where the voice came from.She notices a hooded figure standing in the shadows. An X is emblazoned upon its chest.

“Wh-Where did you come from? If you aren’t from the islands like Kairi said, then where did you come from?” Rainbow Dash demanded.

“You do not yet know what lies beyond the door,” The figure says, still refusing to answer.

“Wait, if you aren’t from the islands, then you must be from another world, just like Rainbow Dash! Am I right?” Kairi asks.

“There is so very much to learn. You understand so little,” The figure mocks coolly.

“Can you stop with the cryptic talk and just talk to us like people?!” Rainbow Dash demands as the figure remains quiet.”Oh, yeah? Well, you’ll see. We’re gonna get out and learn what’s out there!”

“A meaningless effort. One who knows nothing can understand nothing,” The figure says before disappearing.

“Well, yeah! Fine! We didn’t wanna know who you were anyway!” Rainbow yells as she sticks out her tongue.

“Um, Rainbow Dash? Maybe we shouldn’t be so mean. I know he wasn’t the nicest, but it isn’t like he was trying to hurt anyone,” Kairi warned.

“I know. But what do you think he meant by what he was saying?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“I’m not sure. I doubt the others will believe us if we told them. Maybe we should just remain quiet for the time being. After all, if that man wanted to harm us, he would have done so already. So I doubt anything bad will happen if we keep things a secret,” Kairi suggested.

“Um, okay. But if that guy comes back and proves to be trouble, then I’ll clobber him!” Rainbow Dash said, much to Kairi’s discomfort.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Later during the sunset, Sora and Kairi sit at the edge of the dock.

“You know, Riku has changed,” Kairi pointed out.

“What do you mean?” Sora asked.

“Well…,” Kairi begins before she grows silent.

“You okay?” Sora asks in concern.

“Sora, let’s take the raft and go—just the two of us!” Kairi jokingly suggests.

“Huh?” Sora asks, confused at the request.

“Just kidding,” Kairi says.

“What’s gotten into you? You’re the one that’s changed, Kairi,” Sora points out.

“Maybe... You know, I was a little afraid at first, but now I’m ready. No matter where I go or what I see, I know I can always come back here,” Kairi says as she turns to face Sora. “Right?”

“Yeah, of course!” Sora reassures.

“That’s good,” Kairi sighs in relief. She pauses for a moment, considering revealing her feelings to Sora. However, she changes her mind and instead says, “Sora, don’t ever change.”

“Huh?” Sora is confused.

Kairi stands up and takes a final look over the ocean. Sora stares up at her as she ends their conversation by saying, “I just can’t wait. Once we set sail, it’ll be great.”

Sora follows her gaze as the sun sets, with Rainbow finding the scene to be fairly sweet, even though she doesn’t want to admit it. Before she could leave, Twilight turned out to have been watching as well.

“That was such a sweet display of love. You know, I thought that outside of my brother and Cadence, this type of love would only ever appear in fairy tales,” Twilight sweetly commented.

“Oh, really?” Rainbow asked, not wanting to show any softness.

“And from the look on your face, I’d say you found it sweet too,” Twilight noted with a smile.

“W-What?! No way!” Rainbow yelled out with a blush.

“That’s a bit rude, don’t you think?” Twilight commented, though she quickly realized Rainbow was lying but decided not to do anything further as she went back to watching the sunset.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meanwhile in the Library of Disney Castle, Donald reads the letter aloud to Daisy and Queen Minnie as well as to Spike and Goofy.

“Donald, Sorry to rush off without sayin’ goodbye, but there’s big trouble brewin’. Not sure why, but the stars have been blinkin’ out, one by one. And that means disaster can’t be far behind. I hate to leave you all but I’ve gotta go check into it. There’s someone with a “key”—the Kingdom Key Keyblade to our survival. So I need you and Goofy to find him, and stick with him. Got it? We need that key or we’re doomed! So go to Traverse Town and find Leon. He’ll point you in the right direction.

P.S. Would ya apologize to Minnie for me? Thanks, pal.”

The letter is signed with the King’s seal. Pluto sleeps in his bed as the group muses over the King’s words.

“Oh, dear! What could this mean?” Daisy asks in concern.

“It means we’ll just have to trust the king,” Minnie calmly decides.

“Gawrsh, I sure hope he’s all right,” Goofy is worried.

“I know. If he’s anything like Twilight then hopefully he’ll be fine. I do wonder, though. If the stars are worlds… Do you think those shadow creatures are responsible for the worlds vanishing?” Spike wondered.

“It could be. This isn’t the only tale I’ve heard like that. But regardless, I’d be careful out there,” Queen Minnie said to Donald and Goofy.

“Your Highness. Don’t worry. We’ll find the king and this “key,”” Donald reassured.

“Thank you, both of you,” Minnie was grateful for the assistance.

“Daisy, can you take care of the—” Donald began to ask.

“Of course. You be careful, now, both of you,” Daisy wished them well.

“Wait! I know it may be a lot to ask, but can I come with you? I have a very powerful fire breath and can be of much help on your journey. Please! I want to find Twilight. She’s my family,” Spike pleaded, his voice hitching as he said the last part.

Donald thought for a moment before deciding. “Fine. You can come. But don’t get in the way,” Donald decided, not wanting to see the kid hurt on his watch.

“That’s very nice of you, Donald. Oh, and to chronicle your travels, he will accompany you,” Minnie says as she points toward the desk. Donald peers closer, seeing a small bug jumping on the table.

“Over here!” The bug yells out. The cricket stops jumping once he has Donald’s attention. “Cricket’s the name. Jiminy Cricket, at your service.” He bows with his top hat in his hand.

“We hope for your safe return. Please help the king,” Minnie gratefully says.
Donald stands at attention. Joining Minnie and Daisy, Goofy salutes him, before Donald yanks him out the door, with Donald yelling, “You’re coming, too!”
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

They walk down the stairs under the courtyard to the Gummi Ship Control Room. The mouse-eared lights on the wall are dim in the dark hallway. Donald walks ahead as Jiminy hangs on to Goofy’s helmet.

“Gawrsh, Jiminy, your world disappeared, too?” Goofy asked Jiminy.

“It was terrible. We were scattered. And as far as I can see, I’m the only one who made it to this castle,” Jiminy revealed.

“So, I’m really not the only one to have to deal with these shadows,” Spike realized.

“Goofy?” Donald remarks sternly.

“Oh, right… I gotcha. Ya mean, while we’re in other worlds, we can’t let on where we’re from. We’ve gotta protect the world border,” Goofy explains.

““Order.”” Donald corrects.

“Right. World order,” Goofy laughs as Donald sighs.

“So, is there any reason we can’t break the world order? After all, it would probably do more harm than good to keep it a secret,” Spike suggested.

“Look, the last thing we want is for the residents of other worlds to panic or for threats exclusive to that world to become bigger threats. So, for those reasons we need to keep the worlds a secret,” Donald explained.

“Okay then. You do make a good point. Let’s just hope that we can find everyone with that restriction,” Spike said as the group walked through a crown shaped door.

“I guess we’ll need new duds when we get there,” Goofy said.

“So, where is the portal to get us to the other worlds?” Spike asked.

“Where we’re going, we won’t need a portal!” Donald said. They enter the Gummi Ship Control Room, walking across the tiled floor. The whirring of machines fills the air as giant gears spin along the walls. Mechanical arms hang down from the ceiling around a small orange spaceship. The dome of the cockpit reveals three seats. Donald walks toward a large golden tube and puts a hand to his mouth. “Hello up there? Donald Duck to launch crew! Anytime you’re ready.”

In a hanging control booth, Donald’s voice echoes out of the other end of the tube into the ears of a black-nosed chipmunk wearing an apron. Chip salutes and a second chipmunk, this time with a red nose, runs toward a control panel. Dale jumps up to turn a blue lever. Steam billows out of pipes in the ceiling as more gears spin on the walls. Dale leaps to the window and the two chipmunks watch a mechanical hand move across the room. The hand picks up Goofy, carrying him upside down with his arms outstretched. Donald, at his annoyance of being lifted the same way, crosses his arms and frowns. Spike tries to jump into the ship only to be lifted upside down just like Donald and Goofy. As the cockpit opens, Pluto runs into the room and jumps into the Gummi Ship. A light spins on the wall as an interstellar runway opens, lights blinking along the path. A lift moves the rocket ship, aiming it at the tunnel, as Daisy and Queen Minnie enter the room to see their departure. Donald gives Daisy a thumbs-up and a wink as the rockets engines start up with a shower of flames. Donald points forward to the tunnel. “Blast off!!”

In the tunnel, a large neon arrow blinks on, pointing downward. The shaft below the Gummi Ship opens, and the ship falls through it, Donald, Spike, and Goofy all screaming in fear at the sudden dive. The ship drops out of the world and the engine bursts on, sending them into space.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As Rainbow Dash was snoozing on the ship near the port of the island, she dreamed of the shadow creatures that she and the others encountered. Freaked out by her dream, she woke up to the sight of a storm raging, one not to dissimilar to the one she recalls that endangered her world.

“Oh no! It can’t be happening again! Sora, Twilight, and the others might be in trouble! I gotta find them! Quickly!” Just before she could fly off to the other island, Rainbow was stopped by a large number of the shadow creatures that swarmed her and tried to grab and slash at her. “Hey! Knock it off! Why are you attacking other worlds, anyway?!” Rainbow Dash was able to, with some difficulty, shake them off and hit a number of the shadow creatures, making them disappear in a puff of smoke. With the creature’s numbers lessened for now, Rainbow tried to look for the trio only to not see them anywhere. Just as she was about to give up, she heard a yell come from the docks. Upon getting there, she found Kairi being surrounded by numerous shadows, helpless in terms of dealing with the creatures. “Kairi!” Rainbow proceeded to generate a whirlwind that proceeded to send the shadow creatures flying before they could hurt Kairi. “Come on! This way!” Rainbow yelled as she led Kairi to the Secret Spot. “Are you okay?”

“I-I think so. Man, that was close. So, were those the same creatures that separated you from your friends?” Kairi curiously asked the pegasus.

“Yeah, they are! What are these creatures’ deal anyway?!” Rainbow groaned.

“I don’t know. We have got to do something! We can’t just let these dangerous creatures hurt the people of the Destiny Islands! Especially not Riku and Sora!” Kairi yelled in worry.

“I know! But I don’t think we can! These creatures just kept coming and coming back home! I know this isn’t something I’m used to, but we’re gonna need a plan!” Rainbow Dash decided.

“Well, lucky for you two, coming up with plans is my specialty,” Twilight said as she walked up to them, looking a bit frazzled over having fought the shadow creatures to get here.

“You made it here?? Thank goodness! But how? I mean, no offense, but fighting doesn’t seem to be your strong suit,” Rainbow bluntly pointed out, much to Twilight’s annoyance.

“Well… magic happens to be my specialty back at home. The Princess always said that I was destined for great things with my level of power. But… she’s probably just being nice. I’m sure there are other unicorns that can do what I can do,” Twilight humbly said with a blush.

“Okay? So, about that plan…,” Rainbow Dash began.

“Well, we might have to wait on that because while we were talking, the creatures surrounded us,” Kairi pointed out as Rainbow and Twilight turned to see that the teen was right.

Rainbow might not have liked to admit it, but she was scared. However, she wasn’t one to keep her friends hanging, and she wasn’t going to start now. So, she decided to try and fight to the end, and hopefully give Kairi and Twilight a chance to escape. As she punched a shadow, she cried out, “Kairi, Twilight, run while still can! I’ll hold them off!”

Instead of trying to escape, Kairi joined Rainbow Dash and picked up a nearby stick to try and fight with her. “I appreciate you trying to help me, but I’m not going to let you fight alone! Besides, maybe if I help we can beat them this time.”

“But-,” Rainbow started to interrupt only for Twilight to blast two of the shadow creatures.

“Look, I can handle myself. I mean, dangerous situations are new to me, but I’m not helpless. Kairi is right. If we fight together, we may stand a chance,” Twilight suggested.

Rainbow stood there for a moment before smiling. “Thanks. Alright, let’s take down these shadow creatures right now!” Rainbow cried out as she prepared to rush the creatures. However, before she made contact, the duo were suddenly surrounded by an orb of light. When the orb vanished, both Rainbow and Kairi were holding strange, massive keys in their hands/hooves (Rainbow’s was colored red, blue, and yellow while the handle was cloud-like and Kairi’s was pink and covered with flowers). Not only that, but the shadow creatures had apparently disappeared for the time being. “What was that?”

“I’m not sure, but it looks like we somehow found a way to fight off the shadow creatures!” Kairi cheered.

“Maybe. What are these things that you are holding, anyway? They look like fancy giant keys,” Twilight wondered.

“I have no idea. But Kairi has a point. Maybe with these keys and your magic we may be able to stop these creatures this time!” Rainbow cried out hopefully.

“Well…I suppose that may be possible. Let’s go!” Twilight decided confidently.

“Now, let’s go find the others!” Kairi said as she prepared to leave the Secret Spot. However, before the duo could leave, Sora came rushing into the cave, also holding a massive silver key with a golden handle.

“Kairi! Rainbow Dash! Twilight! You guys are okay!” Sora cried out in relief as he rushed to the duo and gave them a hug.

“Sora! You’re okay! Wait. Where’s Riku?” Kairi questioned her friend/crush.

“He was on the smaller island, but he disappeared in a bunch of darkness. He was also talking all strange about some door being open and that the five of us would be able to visit other worlds. Then after Riku disappeared, this strange key appeared in my hands and I heard some voice call it a Keyblade,” Sora explained as Rainbow, Twilight, and Kairi looked confused, glad to see Sora was fine and that they had a weapon to fight the shadows, but also sad that Riku apparently vanished and could potentially be in trouble.

“So Riku is in danger. Do you think he managed to find a way to a different world?” Twilight wondered.

“Maybe…But hopefully we can save him, wherever he ended up! So, these things we have are called Keyblades, huh?” Kairi guessed.

“I…suppose…so. I don’t know why I don’t have one,” Twilight said looking a bit disappointed.

Sora was quick to notice this and tried to comfort the mare. “Well, you still have your own type of magic, right?”

“Well…I guess so. Still, these keys are very strange. When we get the time I’d really like to look into them,” Twilight said, feeling conflicted.

“Well, at least we have these Keyblades to fight off the darkness now! Though one question remains; who is responsible for all this?” Rainbow asked.

“I’m not sure about that. Hopefully it’s not too late to put a stop to the shadows,” Sora said.

“I know! We should get going and stop them before it’s too late!” Kairi exclaimed as the trio began to rush over to leave this place only to feel intense wind come from behind them. Upon turning, they saw that the door inside the Secret Spot was open with an intense dark wind rushing in, blowing the group out of the Secret Spot and into the air.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When Sora woke up, he saw that he, Kairi, Twilight, and Rainbow Dash were on a floating island in the darkened sky, energy flowing from an orb as black as night.

“Kairi! Twilight! Rainbow Dash! Are you two okay?!” Sora cried out in concern for his friends. Thankfully, all three of them woke up and got back on their feet, and Rainbow returning to the air after getting up.

“I think so. Man, things up here are looking bad! Do you think we can save everyone else you guys?” Kairi nervously commented upon seeing that there were dark beings covering the near entirety of the two islands below.

“I’d rather not say this, but we may not even be able to save ourselves at this point, you guys,” Rainbow Dash admitted to the two teens. “Still, I’d rather go down trying to save this world than let the dark creatures take over! So, who’s with me?”

“But…this situation looks hopeless at this point!” Twilight argued, starting to lose hope.

“Maybe, but I’d rather know I gave it my all rather than sit back and do nothing!” Rainbow yelled out as she lifted her Keyblade.

“Well… alright. I’d rather not have others suffer if we can help it. Let’s go!” Twilight agreed as she lit up her horn.

“I’m game to help fight! What about you, Kairi?” Sora asked his friend.

“Um, sure! But we may be in trouble ourselves,” Kairi commented.

“Why is that?” Sora asked, confused.

“Because we are not alone up here,” Kairi said as she pointed to a large humanoid shadow creature that was ready to fight the group for who knows what purpose.

“Well, we can’t just give up! Let’s try and fight him off!” Sora said as he summoned his Keyblade.

“Good to see that you agree with me, Sora! Let’s beat this chump!” Rainbow yelled out as she, Sora, and Kairi rushed at the shadow monster. Twilight, meanwhile, decided to stay afar and shot magic at the monster.

Rainbow flew into the sky and used her Keyblade to hit the creature in the head, with Twilight shooting at his head as well. While it did knock him back, the shadow recovered quickly and punched the ground with his right fist. Sora and Kairi dodged the fist, only to notice that he left his fist on the ground, creating a shadow pool around the fist. Seeing an opportunity, Sora and Kairi constantly hit his hand, causing much damage to the creature.

However, while they were distracted attacking the fist, Rainbow noticed that the smaller creatures were forming and ready to attack the distracted teens. Rainbow quickly descended and sliced at and destroyed the shadow creatures and Twilight blasted the few that remained with magic, receiving a thank you from the teens. The larger creature, meanwhile, having sustained a large amount of damage from Sora and Kairi’s attacks, lifted his fist up away from them.

Running out of steam, the larger creature proceeded to launch many energy attacks from his opened chest, trying to hit the group. Twilight created a barrier around herself and deflected some attacks with her magical blasts, with Kairi and Rainbow using their Keyblades to deflect the remaining attacks while Sora got in one last blow to the larger creature’s head. The creature looks ready to fall. However, the creature suddenly rises once more before disappearing, the dark orb above turning into a tornado that proceeds to suck in the group as the world around them starts to vanish.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meanwhile in a quiet village, Goofy, Donald, Spike, and Pluto walk through town. Something in the sky catches Goofy’s attention and he stops, gazing upward. Donald turns around as Goofy points upward. Donald follows his gaze and gasps.

“Wait. What is going on you gu- oh no!” Spike yells worriedly as he looks up into the sky.

“Look, a star’s goin’ out!” Goofy cries out in shock.A bright star in the night sky twinkles and blinks out of existence.

“That means another world has vanished! If this keeps up, there may not be any more worlds to save! We gotta do something and fast!” Spike decides.

Donald’s face turns serious as he nods in agreement. “You’re right, Spike! Come on. Let’s hurry.” Goofy nods and they walk through the center of the main district toward a flight of steps. The neon letters of the various shops blink in the night air while a few townsfolk inhabit the picturesque town square. Pluto runs ahead of the two. “Where’s that key…”

“Hey, ya know, maybe we ought to go find Leon,” Goofy suggests. They reach the top of the steps in front of an accessory shop. Pluto sniffs around a dark alleyway, while Donald walks off to the right on his own course. Goofy notices Pluto and stops, with Spike also stopping right behind him. “Uh, Donald. Ya know, I betcha that…”

“Aw, what do you know, you big palooka?” Donald rudely responds as he continues walking by.

“What do I know? Hmm…,” Goofy ponders for a second before following Donald. He calls out, “Come on, Pluto.”

“Do you think it’s best we just go on?” Spike asks, though realizing he isn’t getting an answer, Spike just follows the duo, shaking his head as he does so.

Pluto continues his search down the alley, turning a corner at a pile of wooden crates. He comes across a sleeping Sora, Rainbow, Twilight, and Kairi. Pluto is quick to lick Sora’s face. Sora’s eyes blink open slowly and he peers around sleepily, seeing the dog, who happily wags his tail at the sight of him.

“What a dream…,” Sora mutters as he starts nodding off again and Pluto pounces on him. He gives off a startled yell in response. “This isn’t a dream!”

He squints at the dog, his eyes focusing for a moment, before standing up. He searches his surroundings. Several notices are pinned up on a wall nearby, but even in the dimness of the alleyway, what he sees is not familiar. “Where are we?” Sora questions as he sees Kairi, Twilight, and Rainbow Dash are still asleep. “Hey, wake up you guys!” Sora says as he shakes the both of them.

“Give me a few more minutes, mom,” Rainbow Dash mutters to herself as she wakes up.

“Sora…? Sora! Did we… end up in another world after all?” Kairi asks as she gets up with Sora’s help, amazed but confused by the surrounding alley.

“I guess so. I know that there aren’t places like this back at home,” Sora answers.

“You mean you guys don’t have alleys? Curious,” Twilight noted.

“ Man, you really need to spend more time in other worlds, you guys,” Rainbow comments as she is now fully awake and has gotten back into the air.

“Well, we do. Just not one that looks like this. What happened? Where do you think we ended up, Sora?” Kairi asks, feeling excited and nervous all at once.

“I don’t know, you guys,” Sora responds uncertainly.

“I don’t know either. But, at least this place doesn't seem to be covered in dark creatures. That means the people of this world are currently safe,” Twilight sighed in relief.

“Maybe” Remembering Pluto, Sora turns to him and bends down to address Pluto. “Do you know where we are?” Pluto, however, hears a voice calling him and runs back the way he came.

“Hey! Get on back here little buddy!” Kairi calls out to the adorable dog as she, Twilight, Rainbow, and Sora follow the dog to the main part of town, where they can finally see in the brightness of the streetlights.

“Looks like we’ve ended up in another world after all, huh you guys?” Rainbow asked upon seeing the small town.

“I guess we really have. But the question is where are we? And where is Riku and everyone else from the islands?” Sora asked, concerned.

“I don’t know. But look! There is a shop nearby. We should head on in to see if anyone has seen our friends,” Kairi suggested.

“And maybe we’ll learn more about those monsters and the Keyblade,” Twilight agreed.

“Great idea! And while we’re in there maybe we can find something to help us on our quest!” Rainbow Dash cried out.

“Maybe… But, okay! Let's go on in!” Sora finally agreed.

And so, the trio entered the Accessory Shop, with a blond man standing behind the
counter who turns to face them. “Hey there, how can I... Aw, it’s only two kids and their pets,” The man states in disappointment.

“We’re not kids! And the name’s Sora!” Sora complains.

“Yeah! And I’m nobody’s pet! I’m a soon to be member of the Wonderbolts from the land of Equestria!” Rainbow stated with pride.

“Yeah! I’m not a pet either! I’m a respectful Equestrian denizen like anypony else!” Twilight argued.

“Can’t quite understand that, but yeah!” Rainbow agreed.

Suddenly, Kairi interrupted the trio by saying, “Okay, let’s all just calm down and talk like reasonable people here.”

“Okay, okay, I get it. The girl is right. Let’s just simmer down. So why the long face, Sora? You all lost or somethin’?” The man asked Sora.

“No! Well, maybe. Where are we?” Sora questions the older man.

“Huh? So, you three don’t know where you are then, do ya?” The man asks.

“Not really sir, we don’t. Maybe you can tell us where we’ve ended up,” Kairi asks politely.

“I guess I can. But first, maybe you all should explain what brought you here to begin with. I may be able to help you three more with some perspective,” The man offered.

“Well, okay then. I guess we can do that. You see, it all started when…,” Rainbow Dash began to explain everything, with Sora and Kairi filling in the blanks.

“Traverse Town... So, that is where we’ve all ended up,” Kairi thought things over.

“I know. This strange place is another world. Do you think Riku or anyone else we know is here?” Twilight wondered.

“Maybe…,” Rainbow said uncertainly.

“So, gramps, is this really another world?” Sora asks the man curiously.

“And where do you think we are relative to Equestria?” Rainbow Dash asked as well.

“Hey, don’t call me gramps! The name’s Cid!” The man yells annoyed as he grits his teeth, nearly breaking the piece of straw in his mouth.

“Sorry about that, sir! We just wanted to know where we are,” Kairi apologized with a bow.

“I apologize too. We didn’t mean to be disrespectful to you,” Twilight bowed as well.

“That’s okay, little ladies. Just please don’t call me that again. Anyway... Not sure what you’re talkin’ about, but this sure ain’t your island or your kingdom,” Cid explained sadly.

“Hold on! Did you happen to see any other ponies or a dragon by any chance, Cid?” Rainbow Dash asked Cid.

“I’m afraid not. I also haven’t seen your silver haired pal either,” Cid answered.

“Hmm... Guess we’d better start looking for Riku and Rainbow and Twilight’s friends then,” Sora decided as the trio began to leave the store.

“Technically, they aren’t my friends,” Twilight admitted.

“Hey, you may be friends with them soon,” Rainbow reminded.

“Maybe…,” Twilight considered.

“Well, good luck with whatever it is you’re doing. If you ever run into trouble, you come to me,” Cid said as the trio left.

“We’ll be sure to do that, Cid!” Kairi said before leaving, bowing as she did so.

As the trio left the store, they were all unsure of where to begin looking for their friends. However, after going up the steps and seeing a large door, the trio decided to leave the First District and go to the Second District.

Upon getting there, the group saw a man running while being surrounded by darkness. He fell right in front of them and what appeared to be his heart left him and formed a slightly larger armored version of one of those shadows.

“Oh no! That poor man!” Kairi was worried.

“I know! But… why did he become one of those creatures?” Sora wondered.

“Maybe it was… because of his heart?” Twilight considered.

“Um, not to interrupt, but looks like we have trouble!” Rainbow Dash said as many shadow creatures surrounded the group.

“Not them again!” Sora yelled out.

“Why do these creatures keep on hurting people?” Kairi questioned.

“I don’t know. But we can’t just let others lose their hearts to these creatures! Let’s stop them!” Twilight said with determination in spite of her fear.

“Then what are we waiting for? Let’s beat some dark monsters!” Rainbow Dash cried out.

And so, the group fought off the shadow creatures until they were all gone for the time being. Wanting to warn everyone else about the creatures, Twilight and Kairi decided to head on back to the Accessory Shop, with Sora and Rainbow following after.

“Still haven’t found ‘em? Keep your chin up. Take another look around town,” Cid suggested as soon as the group made it back into the shop.

“But…what about the shadow creatures?! We need to stop them!” Sora yelled out.

“Yeah! The citizens are in trouble!” Rainbow agreed.

“Guys…,” Kairi and Twilight warned.

“Look, I have friends that are more than capable of helping take on the creatures. If you’re worried, you can look for them while you search for your friends,” Cid suggested.

“Well…okay. I just hope no one gets hurt,” Kairi wished.

“Me too, Kairi,” Sora agreed.

“I wonder how cool these guys will be?” Rainbow wondered.

“Let’s just focus on finding them for now,” Twilight said as she dragged Rainbow out of the store with her telekinesis.

Just as the group had made it back onto the streets, they heard a voice say, “They’ll come at you out of nowhere.”

“Who are you?” Sora was confused.

“Are you here to help us?” Kairi wondered.

“Or are you an enemy?” Rainbow demanded as she looked around for the source of the voice..

The man didn’t answer, and instead continued, :And they’ll keep on coming at you, as long as you three continue to wield the Keyblade.” They all found the source of the voice; A tall man in a leather outfit, with a lion necklace swinging against his chest. He raises a gloved hand and points at the Keyblade, his blue eyes gazing at Sora through his long dark hair. There is a large scar above his nose. “But why? Why would it choose a bunch of kids like you?” He places a hand to his forehead.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Sora demanded.

“Yeah! Are you hear to help us?” Twilight asked.

“Never mind. I’ll explain later. Now, let’s see that Keyblade, boy,” The man says as he walks slowly towards Sora, his arm reaching out. Sora takes a defensive stance.

“What? There’s no way you’re getting this!” Sora refused.

“Yeah! These Keyblades are going to help us fight those monsters!” Rainbow yelled out.

“Um, maybe we shouldn’t pick a fight with him,” Kairi warned.

“ All right, then have it your way,” The man said as he prepared a sword with a gun barrel on it.

“Well… looks like we have no choice but to fight,” Twilight gulped.

“Perfect! Let’s go!” Rainbow yelled as she rushed to hit Leon with her Keyblade. However, he quickly countered with a slash of his sword. “What the…?”

“Listen her, young lady, I’m not so easily bested,” the man warned.

“Well, neither am I!” Rainbow countered as she sliced at him multiple times, only for him to block each one.

Kairi snuck up behind the man and tried to hit him without causing too much pain. The blow hit, but didn’t do much. “Sorry!” Kairi apologized.

Sora was quick to land a combo on the distracted man, stunning him long enough for Rainbow and Kairi to land another hit each and for Twilight to hit him with a magic blast.

“Nice hit there, Kairi!” Rainbow congratulated the new Keyblade wielder.

“Um, thanks?” Kairi awkwardly accepted the praise.

“Hold on! We’re not done yet!” Twilight warned as the man hit Sora and Kairi, knocking them both out.

“So, still wanna fight me?” The man questioned.

Rainbow looked on in shock at how the man defeated them so easily. However, she decided not to give up and to continue fighting. “Of course!” Rainbow was quick to rush from a distance at the man, who shot multiple fireballs from a distance. Twilight used her magic to freeze the man in place, hoping to stop the man. However, he fought it enough to fire a fireball at Twilight, knocking her out as well. “Twilight! You’re gonna pay now!” Rainbow rushed and hit the man, only to be hit by a sword slash herself. The man, however, was looking exhausted and like he was about to lose. “N-now y-you’re g-gonna-,” Rainbow muttered as she too finally fell unconscious.

“Hey, you found it. Nice going, Leon. Aw! And it looks like you’re slipping too!” A girl in a ninja outfit and black hair teased.

“I took it easy on them, Yuffie. Still... It looks like things are worse than we thought. A lot worse,” The man, named Leon, noted to his friend as he looks toward the Keyblade in Sora’s hands, along with the ones Kairi and Rainbow Dash have.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meanwhile in another world,

Riku awakes on a cold stone platform. His fingers twitch and he opens his eyes, seeing a large waterfall and crystalline rock platforms floating in the air. The sounds of the Rising Falls fill his ears, and he slowly gets to his feet. “Where...am I?” He looks around at the area. The waterfalls flow upwards rather than downwards, filling his vision on nearly every side. He sees no one else around. Riku calls out, “Sora! Kairi! Rainbow Dash! Twilight!” Getting no response, he stares at the tiled ground. Unbeknownst to him, his arrival is noticed by a tall figure in a black cloak, who walks toward him on a much higher platform. The figure’s greenish-gray hand and long violet fingernails are revealed. Next to her, invisible to Riku, is a strange yellow and black triangle figure with a single eye.

The Guard Armor and New Friends

View Online

“Gawrsh, there’s nobody here. Sure is spooky!” Goofy nervously brought up his worries as he, Spike, and Donald were walking through the Alleyway of the Second District.
“Yeah. But I’m not scared!” Spike lied, trying to be brave.
“Really? That’s great!” Goofy said cheerfully.
“W-Well actually, I’m really scared. But if we are to find our loved ones and save the worlds, we can’t afford to be scared! We gotta keep moving!” Spike admitted.
“That’s pretty mature of ya!” Goofy complimented.
“Really? Thank you!” Spike said with a blush.
“Aw, phooey. Unlike you two, I’m not scared,” Donald said only to be proven wrong as he felt a tap on his shoulder. He screamed and leaped into the air, landing and hanging onto Goofy’s bac, shivering as he did so.
“Yeah. Totally not scared,” Spike rolled his eyes sarcastically.
“Excuse me. Did the king send you?” The trio heard a female voice say.
“Wait. The king?!” Donald was surprised as he calmed down and turned around, with Goofy and Spike turning with him. They saw a young woman with flowing brown hair tied in a bow. She wears a long pink dress and brown boots. She smiles at the trio.
“Oh, hello there, young lady! Do you know where we can find Leon?” Goofy asked.
“It’s very important that we find him and this Keybl-,” Spike said only for Donald to jump down from Goofy’s back and cover his mouth.
“Remember, world order!” Donald reminded Spike.
“Sorry!” Spike mumbled as Donald finally uncovered his mouth. “So, if you can point us in the right direction we’ll be able to get going Miss…”
“Aerith. And don’t worry. I can lead you to Leon. But first, we should get inside and away from the Heartless before we continue talking,” The woman said as she led them into the hotel.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Soon after, Sora is starting to wake up…
“Ow, my head! That was really rough. You all okay?” Sora asked the group only to see that the others were indeed conscious, but still aching from the earlier fight.
“Well, we’re alive and I don’t think this pain will be permanent, so I think we’ll be fine,” Kairi said.
“Yeah. Because having a splitting headache is definitely making us all peachy,” Twilight snarked.
“Agreed, Twilight. Man, I just wish I coulda won that fight with the swordsman guy!” Rainbow Dash said annoyed.
“Because winning a fight is very important right now!” Twilight grumbled.
“You’re looking kinda irritable right now, Twilight. You okay?” Kairi asked in concern.
“Yeah, I’m fine. Sorry. It’s just that I’m aching really bad right now,” Twilight apologized. “Also, where did all your Keyblades go?”
“What are you talking about? Mine’s right… Oh no! They’re gone!” Rainbow Dash cried out in worry.
“This is bad! Where did they go?!” Sora worried.
“I don’t know. But hopefully we can find them inside of this…hotel room?” Kairi said, confused.
“I think you’re right, Kairi. Luckily, aside from our Keyblades being gone, I guess we’ll be fine. But still…my head is aching. Also, which of you brought us all here?” Sora asked.
“We did,” Yuffie answered as the group turned to her as she was entering the room, with the man, Leon, from earlier following. “Well, looks like you’re all awake. Sorry for the headaches, though. I think you might’ve overdone it, Squall.”
The tall man from before walks into the green room. “That’s Leon,” The man said as it turned out he was holding the three Keyblades and he put them down, leaning against the wall.
“Ah, so there’s our Keyblades! I thought for a moment we lost them,” Rainbow sighed in relief.
“But…why did you take them away from us?” Kairi asked.
“Yeah, sorry about that, too. We had to get it away from you to shake off those creatures. It turns out that’s how they were tracking you,” Yuffie revealed.
“Wait. How does that work?” Twilight asked, confused.
Leon answered, crossing his arms, “The Keyblade has massive magical power, connected to the strength of the user’s heart. Taking them away from you was the only way to conceal your heart from them. But it won’t work for long.” Sora sits on the bed, staring down at the floor. “Still hard to believe that you of all people are the chosen one. Or that we’d be in the presence of three Keyblade wielders.” Leon picks up the Kingdom Key Keyblade and swings it in the air. It flashes out of his hand and back into Sora’s, with the other two Keyblades returning to Kairi and Rainbow a moment later. Leon walks over to him. “Well, I suppose beggars can’t be choosers.”
“Why don’t you start making sense! What’s going on here?” Sora demanded.
“I agree! Give us answers as to what is going on!” Twilight agreed.
“Especially if you want us to trust you,” Rainbow yelled out.
“Pardon if we’re being rude, but can you please tell us what is going on here?” Kairi pleaded.

At this point in time, Aerith has led Donald, Spike and Goofy to the adjacent red room.
“Okay, you know there are many other worlds out there besides your castle and this town, right?” Aerith asked the trio.
“Yeah,” Donald answered.
“I suppose that Equestria is another one of these worlds then, right?” Spike asked curiously.
“That’s right,” Aerith confirmed.
“But they’re supposed to be a secret,” Goofy responds as he covers his mouth.
“Yeah! That’s what I’ve been told at least,” Spike said.
“They’ve been secret because they’ve never been connected. Until now. There haven’t been many ways to enter different worlds before, but now the walls between worlds have weakened,” Aerith confirmed as her thoughts drift to nearly a decade earlier. “When the Heartless came, everything changed.”

Back with Sora and the others…
“The Heartless?” Sora asked.
“The ones who attacked you guys, you remember?” Yuffie confirmed.
“So, those are what those shadow monsters are called,” Kairi said.
“Sounds like a pretty cool name, though. I wonder what their deal is, though,” Rainbow Dash noted.
“Yeah, What exactly are these Heartless, anyways?” Twilight asked.
“That’s simple. Those without hearts,” Leon answered.
“But…hearts pump blood throughout someone’s body!” Kairi yelled out.
“Yeah! How could they function without blood?” Rainbow Dash demanded.
“Are they zombies?!” Sora was getting nervous.
“The hearts they lack are different. Hearts are the core that make up a person. What allows them to feel and truly exist as an individual,” Leon explained.
“Oh,” Sora said as Rainbow and him blushed in embarrassment.
“The darkness in people’s hearts—that’s what attracts them,” Yuffie said.
“And there is darkness within every heart,” Leon said.
“Well…that sounds depressing,” Sora noted.
“Maybe…does that mean any one of us could become a Heartless then?” Twilight nervously asked.
“It’s possible,” Yuffie confirmed. “But, you’d have to fall to your darkness or be attacked by the Heartless and lose for that to happen.”
“Well, on the bright side, we can avoid falling to darkness if we’re careful,” Kairi said.
“Yeah! Bring on these Heartless! We can take them on!” Rainbow flew up and sliced the air with her Keyblade, only for Twilight to grab her with her telekinesis.
“We can’t just charge in recklessly! We need to come up with a plan!” Twilight yelled out.
Yuffie looks toward Sora and the others before aksing, “Hey, have you heard of someone named Ansem?”

“Ansem?” Goofy asks as he places a hand to his chin.
“He was studying the Heartless. He recorded all of his findings in a very detailed report,” Aerith explained.
“Well, that sounds pretty handy! Maybe with it we can understand what these Heartless are doing! And why!” Spike started to feel hopeful. Donald crosses his arms and taps his foot on the wood floor.
“Gawrsh, uh, can we see it?” Goofy asked politely.
“Please! We need it to stop the Heartless!” Spike asked.
Aerith shook her head, however. “It’s pages are scattered everywhere.”
Donald asked, confused, “Scattered?” Donald stops tapping.
“To many worlds,” Aerith continued.
“Oh, then maybe the king went to find ‘em,” Goofy guessed. He slams a fist down into his hand and Donald nods.
“Yes, those were my thoughts exactly,” Aerith agreed.
“Sounds a bit reckless, though. He could have brought someone with him at least,” Spike said, shocking Donald and Goofy. “Sorry! Just… thinking aloud. I’m sure he’s fine wherever he ended up.”
“It’s okay, Spike. But regardless, we’ve gotta find him quick!” Goofy said.
“Wait! Not yet, you two!” Donald yelled. “First, we need that “key”! The Kingdom Key!”
“That’s right. The Keyblade,” Aerith confirmed.

“So...this is the key? The one that will save us all?” Sora asked as he holds up the Keyblade.
Yuffie nods in confirmation, “Exactly!”
“Sounds like a lot of responsibility, though,” Kairi noted.
“I think it’s kinda cool. We’re heroes!” Rainbow Dash cheered.
“But…why are the Heartless after us so much? Are we really that susceptible to darkness?” Twilight asked, wanting answers.
“It’s simple, Twilight. The Heartless have great fear of the Keyblade,” Leon answers. He walks over to the door.
“So, why do they fear the Keyblade?” Kairi asked.
“I was just about to ask the same thing,” Twilight said.
“Simple. If a Heartless is slain by the Keyblade, or by any weapon within close proximity to the Keyblade, that Heartless will never reform. Their heart will be free and the individual may eventually return to being whole again,” Yuffie answered.
“That’s why they’ll keep coming after you no matter what,” Leon finished.
“Sounds kinda cool to have the constant action, though I could still use breaks from fighting, so I’m a little mixed on this magic destiny,” Rainbow admitted.
“I agree with Rainbow Dash. I didn’t ask for this,” Sora said.
“Yeah, we’re just kids. As much as I’d like to play a part in saving the worlds, I’m not sure how we’d do. So, is it possible to give the Keyblade to someone else?” Kairi asked.
“I’m afraid not. Once you get a Keyblade, the power to use one remains with you for life. A specific Keyblade can be destroyed or lost, but you can obtain a new one,” Yuffie explained.
“But…what causes one to gain a Keyblade to begin with?” Twilight asked.
“Either you have it passed down from someone else or, quite simply, the Keyblade chooses its master. And it chose you, Sora,” Yuffie answered.
“So tough luck,” Leon stated as he leans against the door.
“How did all this happen? I remember being in my room…,” Sora tried to retrace his steps. He suddenly gasps sharply, standing up and looking at them frantically. “Wait a minute! What happened to my home? My island? Riku! He may have fallen to darkness! And what about my other friends and family?!”
“Yeah! And my brother and assistant Spike? Or Princess Celestia?!” Twilight agreed.
“Not that I’m worried, but Fluttershy and Applejack and everyone else in Ponyville could also be in trouble,” Rainbow Dash said, lying to the others and herself.
“Yeah…it looks like many innocents may have fallen with their worlds. What do we do?” Kairi asked in concern.
“You know what? I really don’t know,” Leon sadly, but sternly admitted.
Sora and the others all look down sadly. Yuffie tries to change the subject. “Hey, cheer up! I’ve heard that the Keyblade can open all sorts of locks. Give it a try the next time you find a treasure chest or door lock!”
“Heh. I guess the Keyblade can be used for more than fighting then,” Kairi said with a smile, her mood lifting a bit.
“Hey, look! There’s a treasure chest right there!” Rainbow Dash noticed a chest on the table. “Here, I’ll open it!” Rainbow said as she tried to use her hooves to open it, only for it to remain shut.
“Um, Rainbow Dash? Maybe the Keyblade should be used to open it?” Twilight suggested.
“Hey! I just found out about them. Don’t judge me!” Rainbow protested.
“Here, let me try,” Kairi said as she tapped the chest with a Keyblade, it opening and revealing an Elixir inside.
“Wow, we got ourselves an Elixir!” Sora cheered.
“Cool! What’s an Elixir?” Rainbow asked, Twilight.
“I have no idea, to be honest,” Twilight admitted.
“Wow! And here I thought you were a genius that knew a lot,” Rainbow teased.
“Just because I know a lot doesn’t mean I know everything, Rainbow. This type of stuff is new to me as much as it is to you,” Twilight pointed out.
“An Elixir is a special, but rare drink that fully restores the drinker to their full power and energy. Could come in handy for the journey ahead,” Kairi explained.
“Yes, and you’d best get yourselves prepared, seeing as how sooner or later, the Heartless will find you guys,” Leon warned.
“Prepare myself?” Sora asked.
“To fight for your life. Are you all ready?” Leon asked.
“Wait. Wait. Wait. We just found out all this dangerous destiny stuff and you’re expecting us to fight for our lives?” Twilight protested.
“I don’t think we have a choice, Twilight. We’re going to have to fight one way or another. I do wish things could have been differently, though,” Kairi admitted.
“Fine. But, I just hope things don’t go wrong,” Twilight reluctantly agreed.
“I’m in! This fighting stuff is pretty cool and could be fun. What about you, Sora? Are you ready?” Rainbow asked Sora.
Sora sat on the bed for a good minute, thinking things over. He agreed with Twilight that he wasn’t exactly keen on endangering himself and the others fighting these Heartless. However, like Kairi said, they didn’t have many options seeing as how the Keyblade was stuck with them, and Sora’s being the one that would apparently stop the Heartless for good. So, he finally decided, “I’m ready!”
“Okay then. Yuffie, let’s go join Aerith. She should be there now with the other visitors,” Leon said.
“Wait. Other visitors?” Twilight was confused.
“There are others here in Traverse Town searching for a way to stop the destruction of our worlds,” Leon answered.
“Maybe this means that we can have help fighting the Heartless,” Kairi said, her mood lifting.
“And maybe Riku and the others are okay!” Sora agreed.
“You think Spike is among them?” Twilight asked.
“Could be, but we won’t know if we don’t check on the- Wait! Leon!” Yuffie points to the other end of the room as a Soldier Heartless appears, clattering awkwardly. Leon runs forward with his Gunblade out once more.
“Yuffie, go!” Leon commands his friend. Yuffie runs into the Red Room, squashing Donald behind it with a squawk. Aerith’s face turns serious.
“Yuffie?” Aerith was initially confused as she followed after her friend.
“Everyone, let’s go!” Leon commands as he slams the Heartless through the window of the room and it flies over the balcony and down to the Alleyway below. Leon runs after it, Sora and the others following.The Red Room door closes and Goofy and Spike stare at Donald flattened
against the wall.
“So, what do you think just happened?” Goofy wondered.
“Seems like trouble! Maybe those Heartless that we were told about!” Spike said, trying to ignore his growing fear. “Let’s go!” Spike yelled as he and Goofy picked up Donald and ran to look for a way out.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Down in the Alleyway, more Heartless have appeared around the group. Twilight was able to stop ten of the Soldiers with her telekinesis, but she was straining to do so. “Hurry up and do something! Please!” Twilight cried out.
“Got it!” Rainbow yelled as she hit four of the Soldiers with combos, eventually slaying the Heartless. “Anyone else want some?” Suddenly, one Soldier jumped up and hit Rainbow Dash from behind. Just as the six Heartless were about to all attack the dazed Keyblade wielder, Sora and Kairi attacked and slayed the six remaining Heartless with Keyblade slashes.
“Phew! That was a close call!” Sora sighed in relief.
“Are you okay, Rainbow Dash? That was a bit of a close call,” Kairi asked as she helped Rainbow get back up.
“You know, I could have handled that on my own,” Rainbow claimed, trying to save face.
“Sure you could,” Kairi said in a good natured joking way, annoying Rainbow a bit.
“Well, I’d say we probably reduced the Heartless’s numbers by quite a bit, right?” Sora guessed.
“Compared to the number there are out in the worlds, I’d say we’re not even close to winning at this point,” Leon bluntly put it.
“Really?! Aw man!” Sora wasn’t happy.
“So, what do we do? If the Heartless will just keep coming, how can we stop them?” Twilight asked, worry present in her voice.
“Simple. We don’t bother with the small fry if we can help it. Find the leader! Let’s go!” Leon yelled as he went back into the Second District through the nearby door.
“Which Heartless do you think is the leader, you guys?” Sora asked.
“I don’t know. Maybe we should fight each one until we find him or her!” Rainbow suggested as she held out her Keyblade.
“But Leon said not to bother with the smaller ones’ though. Maybe the leader is a much bigger Heartless,” Kairi suggested.
“Yeah! I agree with Kairi! Let’s get out of this alley and start looking for a giant Heartless!” Twilight cried out.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
As Sora and his friends fight Heartless, they looked around for any signs of a bigger Heartless that could be the leader. At first, they had no luck as they only ran into Shadows and Soldiers. Eventually, however, the group found their way to the Third District.
Sora and the others run down the stairs into the square as Goofy watches from a high balcony. Goofy turns around as Heartless appears around him, Spike, and Donald. He takes out his shield. “Gawrsh, are these the Heartless guys?” Goofy wondered.
“Well, seeing as how they’re scary looking monsters that could potentially eat dragons, I’d say yes!” Spike nervously said as he tried to regain his courage.
Donald swings his wand in front of him “Don’t be afraid, Spike! You’re with us! Now, let’s go get ‘em, Goofy and Spike!”
Sadly, in spite of their best efforts, the trio, with a loud crash, were blasted off the balcony, though not without defeating a few Heartless first. The group turns, hearing the commotion, and everyone tries to run as Donald, Spike, and Goofy fall on top of them. Stars appear around their heads before they see the Keyblade.
“The key!” Donald and Goofy smile as they see the Keyblade Aerith showed them a picture of earlier.
“I know! Looks like we managed to find the Kingdom Key! First step accomplished!” Spike cheered.
“Wait a second. Was that…,” Twilight muttered as she got out of the pile and saw Spike.
“Tw-Twilight? Is that you?” Spike asked as he looked overwhelmed by emotion, tears in his eyes.
Tears also entered Twilight’s eyes as she rushed to hug, tackling him to the ground. “Spike! Thank goodness! After all that happened, I was afraid you fell to darkness like Equestria and that I’d never see you again!”
“I know! I know it’s only been a few days, but I missed you so much!” Spike hugged Twilight back.
“Aw, this is so sweet!” Kairi found the sight cute.
“I know, right? Two friends, reunited. Well, family in this case,” Sora agreed.
“Well…I guess this is cute. I can’t believe I said that,” Rainbow was a bit annoyed of herself.
“Well, Donald, looks like Spike found his older sister already! Isn’t that great?” Goofy asked his friend.
“Maybe. But…can everyone please get off me?!” Donald freaked out.
Just as everyone was getting back up, however, the District starts to rumble and they look
around. Large blocks appear from the ground and cover the exits. Several Soldier Heartless surround them as they stand up, ready to fight.
“Ha! Only a few Heartless? These guys underestimate us! We can take them down one each with ease!” Rainbow boasted.
“Um, you do know that these guys are tough, right? I mean, we did just get defeated by a bunch of them a few minutes back,” Spike reluctantly admitted.
“Yeah, but they didn’t have this!” Sora cried out as he brought out his Keyblade.
“Don’t forget. You’re not the only one with a Keyblade, Sora! We can help you!” Kairi reminded Sora as she summoned her Keyblade as well.
“Whoa! Donald, looks like there are multiple Keyblades! And here I thought the king was the only other one still out there with a Keyblade!” Goofy was amazed.
“Not now, Goofy! We need to fight the Heartless! And this time we get serious!” Donald yelled out as he shot out a few Fire spells, destroying the three Heartless he fired at. Goofy, meanwhile, rushed towards a few Heartless, ramming them into one of the walls.
Twilight was surprised and amazed to see the strange form of magic be used. She wanted to ask about it, but realized that now wasn’t the time for that.
“Um, right!” Spike agreed as he shot out a small flame at one Soldier. Thankfully for him, the Heartless was slain. Happy to see this, Spike gained a bit of confidence and went after another Heartless.
Twilight, meanwhile, was blasting several Heartless with her magic, dispelling them one by one. Just as one was about to hit her from behind, Rainbow Dash sliced one that tried to scratch Twilight from behind. “Need some help?” Rainbow asked.
“Wha?!” Twilight was a bit freaked out by the sudden voice, only to look a bit annoyed at Rainbow upon seeing her. “You know, you didn’t have to risk giving me a heart attack!”
“I know, but you almost got hurt by one of the Heartless while you were busy using your fancy magic. Still, you did a great job at defeating them, though. But I bet that we’d do even better working together,” Rainbow said as she held out her hoof. Twilight looked at her hoof for a while before grabbing it and returning to the battle, with Rainbow slicing Heartless with her Keyblade and Twilight covering her with her magic, making some easier to hit with telekinesis and blasting those that got close to Rainbow Dash.
Kairi, meanwhile, was having a bit of trouble fighting the Heartless as she wasn’t as used to fighting as Sora and Riku were. She missed a few blows and even got hit a few times. However, she did manage to defeat a few Heartless with her Keyblade. She turned to see that Sora, in contrast, was like a natural fighting Heartless, slaying them one by one with his Keyblade. Kairi looked at Sora in admiration, hoping that one day she would be as skilled fighting Heartless as he was.
It took a few short minutes, but eventually all of the Soldier Heartless were defeated by the group.
“Aw yeah! They’re all down! Heroes one, Heartless zero!” Rainbow cheered.
“Well, now that we have a chance to talk, it’s nice to finally meet you,” Donald greeted Sora.
“Yeah! We’ve been looking for you for some time, Mr. Kingdom Key wielder!” Goofy greeted as well.
“Um, his name’s Sora. And I’m Kairi. Strange to see a talking duck here, but seeing as how we’re friends with talking ponies, we shouldn’t be rude,” Kairi said.
“So, first question. Who are you and why are you helping us?!” Twilight asked nervously.
“Well you see…,” Goofy began.
“Maybe we should wait on the pleasantries, you guys,” Spike said.
“Why’s that, Spike was it?” Rainbow asked.
“Because the Heartless sent out one more big guy to fight us,” Spike answered with fear in his voice as he pointed to behind the group.
Spike was right, as a massive armed Heartless was forming behind him. Strangely enough, the massive Heartless consisted of only a pair of legs, hands, a body, and a head. However, the Heartless was still dangerous looking and much bigger than any of the Heartless they had faced so far.
“Whoa! We now have to face that?!” Sora was shocked.
“I know, right?!” Spike nervously agreed.
“Do we even have enough in us to face this thing?” Donald wondered.
“I don’t know…,' Twilight said with uncertainty as she looked around the area.
“We can’t just give up now! Everything and everyone is at stake right now! If we don’t stop this thing, then who will?!” Rainbow Dash asked.
Twilight stood there for a moment, not sure how to feel. However, after thinking about what was at stake, namely the fate of many innocents, she decided, “Rainbow is right! We have to stop this guy. Remember, we outnumber him greatly!”
“Uh huh! Plus, it may be easier if we each focus on one part at a time,” Kairi suggested.
“Good idea, Kairi!” Sora cheered.
“I agree! Donald, what do you think?” Goofy asked his friend.
Donald started to walk forward as he lifted his staff and shot a fireball at the Heartless’s left leg. “Let’s get him!” Donald cried out.
And so, the group combined their power and worked to fight off the massive Guard Armor. Sora and Kairi sliced at the legs of the Heartless while Rainbow sliced at the head. Spike burned the legs along with Sora and Kairi’s slices as Goofy rushed at the legs as well. As for Donald and Twilight, they used their respective magics to attack the body and arms.
The Guard Armor, however, was still fighting back. He stomped at the heroes with his feet and sliced at them with his hands. They were able to dodge most of the Heartless’s attacks, but they did get hit by a few attacks.
Eventually, the Heartless’s hands and feet were destroyed, leaving just his body and head. However, that didn’t mean the fight was easier. The Guard Armor spun his body around the small field into the heroes and also created energy blasts and lasers from the bottom of his body. By this point, both the Heartless and the heroes were both running out of steam. However, Sora and Kairi managed to jump up and hit the Heartless in the head, defeating him and releasing his heart as he collapsed and vanished.
A few minutes later, Leon and Yuffie joined the group.
“Phew! That was one intense fight!” Rainbow said as she was panting.
“I know! For a moment there, I doubted we had it in us,” Spike sighed in relief.
“But we did! And we won!” Sora cheered.
“Yeah! Maybe now there will be less Heartless around Traverse Town now,” Kairi agreed.
“Hopefully you’re right, Kairi,” Twilight said.
“Um, fellas? Is it okay if we finish talkin’ to ya now?” Goofy asked them.
“I guess so. Sora?” Kairi asked her friend, who agreed to talk with the duo.
“So, you were looking for me?” Sora asked Donald and Goofy.
Donald & Goofy nod and confirm, “Uh-huh!”
Leon, with arms crossed, says, “They, too, have been seeking the wielder of the Kingdom Key Keyblade.”
Yuffie nods, before saying, “They’re out there trying to save the worlds just like you.”
“Yuffie is right! Maybe we can all work together,” Spike suggested.
“Maybe. I don’t know, though…,” Twilight was reluctant to accept the help and endanger others.
“Aw, don’t worry! We don’t bite!” Goofy tries to console before suggesting, “Hey, why don’t you come with us? We can go to other worlds on our vessel.”
Sora is sad and facing downward as he says, “I wonder if I could find Riku.” Leon closes his eyes, understanding what Sora is feeling.
“Of course,” Donald says. At this, Sora looks up at them with hope in his eyes.
“You see, Sora? Maybe we can find Riku along with Rainbow and Twilight’s friends.
“Uh…I don’t really do friends. But…I guess I could use some help looking for the princess,” Twilight admitted.
Goofy asks Donald, “Are you sure?”
Donald whispers to Goofy, “Who knows? But we need him and his pals to come with us to help us find the king.”
“Wait! What did you say?!” Rainbow demanded only for her to get interrupted by Leon.
Leon steps forward and says, “Sora, Kairi, go with them. Especially if you want to find your friends.”

Sora halfheartedly mumbled, “Yeah, I guess.”
Kairi noticed that Sora was miserable and put a hand on his shoulder. “Sora?”
“But you can’t come along looking like that. Understand?” Donald asks in genuine concern as he wags a finger. “No frowning. No sad face. Okay?”
Goofy interjects, “Yeah, ya gotta look funny, like us!”
Donald pushes him away, saying, “This boat runs on happy faces.”
“Um, is that figurative or literal?” Rainbow asks.
“Believe it or not, it’s literal,” Spike confirms.
“What?! But that makes no sense!” Twilight complained.
“We have magic and we’re ponies! I don’t think you should complain!” Rainbow pointed out.
“So, Sora? You think you can be at least a little happy for now?” Kairi gently asked.
“Happy?” Sora asks as Donald and Goofy smile. Sora bends down and reveals a huge cheesy grin. Getting no response from them, he stops awkwardly. Donald and Goofy burst out laughing.
Goofy points at Sora, saying, “That’s one funny face!”
Sora stands up tall, saying, “Okay, why not? I’ll go with you guys.”
“Um what about us?” Rainbow asked Sora, reminding him of the others.
“Oh, right! What do you guys think?” Sora asked the others.
“They seem pretty nice and they can help us find Riku. So, why not go with them?” Kairi agreed.
“I can feel something a bit off, Kairi. But…okay. If it’ll help us find anypony else,” Rainbow answered.
“I’ve already gone with them this far. Why not continue going with them? Twilight?” Spike agreed as well as he asked his older sister.
“Sorry, but Spike and I can find the princess on our own,” Twilight apologized.
“But…these two are offering to help us find the others! Why don’t we just stick with them for now?” Spike asked pleadingly.
Twilight stood there for a moment, not sure if she wanted to go along for this trip. After all, she still wasn’t on the best terms with these people yet. However, realizing that this may be the only way to return home and find the princess, she reluctantly agreed, “Fine. The name’s Twilight.” said as she held out her hoof.
“Kairi’s my name,” Kairi introduced herself as she held out her hand.
“Name’s Rainbow Dash! Got it memorized?” Rainbow introduced herself while holding out her hoof.
Donald held out a hand, saying, “Donald Duck.”
Goofy did the same, “Name’s Goofy.”
Sora did the same, “I’m Sora.”
“All for one, one for all,” Goofy said cheerfully as everyone placed their hands and hooves together.
—-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Meanwhile, in a room full of darkness, a group with equally dark intentions gaze at an image of the trio on a round table.
“That little squirt and his pals took down that Heartless! Who’d have thought it?” Hades grumbled in shock. The fiery man looks over to a thin man with a staff.
The man with the staff, Jafar, replies, “Such is the power of the Keyblade. The child’s strength is not his own.”
The large woman next to him gazes down cunningly at the image, water dripping off her many appendages. The woman, named Ursula offers, “Why don’t we turn him into a Heartless?” She cackles loudly. “That’ll settle things quick enough.”
“Maybe. I’d rather deal with those ponies personally. After all, they dared to try and oppose my rule in Equestria. Best to get rid of any threats before they can threaten us,” Nightmare Moon suggested.
A man, Captain Hook, standing next to her pipes up, “And the brat’s friends are the king’s lackeys. Swoggle me eyes, they’re all bilge rats by the look of them.”
“You’re no prize yourself, Hook. Maybe you’re right, ladies. Why don’t we stop them now?” Oogie Boogie agrees as the ghostly figure beside the man laughs loudly and the man brandishes a silver hook as his left hand.
“Shut up!” Hook protested.
“Enough,” a woman, Maleficent, says.The villains look over to the tall woman in a black cloak. She gazes through narrow eyes at the image on the table, her green skin echoing its pale light. Her long fingers curve around the staff in her hand. “The Keyblade has chosen him and a few of his little friends. Will it be them who conquers the darkness? Or will the darkness swallow him? Either way, he could be quite useful.” She smiles darkly as the others disappear in Corridors of Darkness. Suddenly, the area around her turns gray.
“Spoken like a true villain, Malef! So, what’s the plan, eh? Do what your underlings suggested and kill the kids now?” A yellow triangle with one eye and black limbs and a hat said.
“The name’s Maleficent. And this is not your place, Bill! You, along with Xehanort, may have laid the groundwork for our future plans, but that doesn’t mean you can barge in on my meetings or other plans!” Maleficent complained.
“Haha! Making you mad is just too easy! But, do you really believe doing nothing about those kids won't bite you in the butt later? The Keyblade’s strength does grow stronger as time goes on and the wielder grows as well, after all,” Bill Cipher pointed out.
“If they do start becoming a problem then we’ll find a way to kill them when the time comes. For now, so long as they don’t hurt our plans we should leave them be,” Maleficent decided.
“Aw, does Malef have a soft spot after all?” Bill teased.
“No, I do not! I merely don’t believe they can do much. Especially once we find the remaining princesses,” Maleficent reminded coldly.
“Right, right. The plan to make Kingdom Hearts ours! Just remember to free me once we find the last of them, right Malef?” Bill reminded Maleficent.
“Oh, don’t worry, Bill! You’ll get what you deserve when the time is right,” Maleficent said with a malicious grin as both figures laughed wickedly.