Return to Final Fantasy X-3 Chapter Forty-Three

Final Fantaxy X-3

Author: Stormforce
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: Don't own either series.

Once Buffy had set the ship's defense system, she and Willow stared at the world for another moment before turning. Not knowing what to expect, both girls walked past the others and opened a storage closet they'd been using to store their weapons and items. It had been her and Willow's idea to keep their weapons and items within reach, but out of site, and the closet had been the perfect size.

Buffy glanced around at the small bottles, and began taking as many mixes, Potions, Antidotes, Ethers, and Phoenix Downs as she could carry in her pouch. Turning she handed Willow just as many as would fit in her pouch, and hoped that they would be enough. Buffy was going to make damn sure they were ready for what was coming their way.

Willow took the items from Buffy, and placed them into her pouch, before grabbing the sword Xander had given her. The redhead then strapped the sheath for the sword around her waist, and sheathed the sword. Reaching up, she pulled down a pair of leg sheaths and handed them to Buffy, and watched as the Al Bhed strapped them on each leg. Reaching up once again, Willow took the small sharpe daggers from their hooks, and gave them to Buffy.

As Buffy sheathed her daggers; Willow looked around the small space, and picked up two diamond shape arm shields. She handed one to Buffy and strapped the other on her left wrist, Willow knew if things got bad they both could use the extra weapons, and a shield. Picking up two star shaped arm shields the redhead turned and tossed each to Tara and Faith, before turning away.

Tara could feel tears stinging her eyes as she caught the shield, and swallowed the lump that had formed in her throat, as she strapped the shield on her left wrist. After everything they'd been through, how could Willow keep something life threatening from her? The ex-summoner knew Willow loved her, and that was the only thing she could think of.

Willow's love for her, kept her from telling what was going to happen. But why couldn't Willow see that keeping something like that a secret, could very well be dangerous to her? Tara shook her head, when this was over, and the Heartless were gone, she was going to have a very long talk with her wife.

Faith had caught the shield, and sighed as she hung her head and was fighting off the tears that were threatening to fall, as she strapped the shield on. How could Buffy do this? Hell, how could Willow? Weren't they both to share everything with their lovers?

Didn't Buffy love her enough to trust her with this secret? A secret that could very well leave them dead, or dying on the floor. Faith knew she'd want to keep her lover safe, but she'd also tell her and the others if they were about to face what could be their doom.

Donald and Goofy had the feeling that something was wrong, but try as they might, neither could figure out what it was. The guys wathed Willow and Buffy load up on everything they could think of, but looked and acted as if they were in another world. Goofy tapped Donald's shoulder and nodded toward Tara and Faith. Their feeling of wrongness grew stronger, as they saw the girls fighting their tears back, they knew something was wrong, but somehow the guys knew Tara and Faith didn't know what it was.

The duck cast his worried gaze at Goofy -who met it with one of his own- and sighed. If the lovers didn't know what was going on, then they figured something bad was coming their way. And that thought worried them both.

"It's time." Buffy's emotionless voice startled the others out of their thoughts.

"Let's go." Willow's equally emotionless voice spoke as she approached the teleporter with Buffy by her side.

When everyone appeared they found themselves on a twenty-foot round section of frozen rock, and could see at least another six ahead of them. Two more smaller sections of frozen rock were moving up and down close to a large platform that very easily looked like it was fifty-foot round. They could also see to white stone pillars close to the far edge of the platform, leading into nothingness. And beyond that a large castle loomed in the distance.

The castle's towers were bigger and rounder than Bevelle's main temple, and the group could feel the darkness pouring from the towers in waves. A pitch-black swirling mist circled above the castle like a giant open maw ready to swallow everything whole. Black, red, and green lightning shot out of the swirling mist, and crackled in mid-air before hitting the towers, causing an extremly loud boom to echo across the area.

"Gawrsh," Goofy said in awe, "Look at that."

Buffy shivered, "I feel like I know this place."

"Same here," Willow said staring at the castle, "I feel a warmth inside...right here." she pointed to her chest.

"Hmm..." Goofy turned toward the two girls, and cocked his head, "That's strange."

Buffy and Willow had a very good reason as to why they felt the way they did. The castle the group was currently staring at had been Princess Tara, and Princess Faith's castle, but was different now that the Heartless had taken over. The warmth they would have felt if they'd ever visited before the princesses world was destroyed, was now replaced with only darkness. But there was something there calling to Willow and Buffy, something inside, and they truly wanted to answer.

Buffy felt like her heart was being pulled forward by something promising safety, and...truth? But what could that be? She only felt truly safe with Faith and the others, what could possibly be stronger than her love for her cousin; a woman that was more like a sister than a friend, and her lover? If Buffy would admit it, she'd say it felt good, and that was scaring her. And badly at that.

Willow felt like she was being pulled into two seperate directions at the same time. Like Buffy, she too, felt the promise of safety, and the truth of something she didn't know. But she could also feel the darkness' sweet siren-like song calling to her stronger than before.

The gray mage also felt something else overshadowing the call, and couldn't tell what exactly it was. But she was greatful it was there, she had no way of knowing how strong the darkness really was... Or if she could resist it long enough to get their job done.

What was in that castle that could make Willow feel even more loved than what Tara already did? Willow didn't think that was possible, whatever it was, it was screwing with her feelings, and that pissed her off. But not knowing also caused a chill to run up her spine. Whatever was calling to her was scaring her to death.

Faith was staring at her lover, and wondering just what in the hell was making her shake. It was warm enough, so it couldn't be the cold. The only thing she could think of was what she and Willow were keeping hiden.

Could whatever the secret was be that bad? She knew the darkness was stronger, but didn't think Buffy could feel it too bad, certainly not like Willow, or even Tara. Like she, Buffy had only just began casting real magic, could she feel how stronger it was? Faith felt the chill creep over her body. The darkness was worse than what it was on the ship.

Tara was no better than the rest, she actually was worse. The darkness was making her whole body ache, an ache that hurt right down to her bones. Being a white mage, and being in a place like this just did not mesh, and she was feeling a very powerful backlash of dark energy. But there was one thing that worried her more than her aching body, and that was the fact about her white magic.

Tara didn't know how well her magic would work in a place like this, hell, she didn't even know if it would work at all. And that small, but true fact worried her to no end. If one of them, or even herself were badly injured, how was she suppose to heal them? Tara hated that. If her magic just barely worked, or if it was blocked, how would it help save any one of them if they needed it? What if it was a critical hit? A life threatening injury? How would she help without her magic?

She had watched as Buffy and Willow took everything from Potions to Phoenix Downs, but was still worried. Those had to be swallowed, or poured directly on the wound to work, and during a heated battle they didn't have that much time. Her magic was quicker, all she had to do was cast it, and in healed as soon as it hit the injured party member.

"Aw, you're just hungry." Donald waved his hand in the air, and shaking his head at what Willow and Buffy had said. How did they know this place, especially when none of them had ever seen it before?

"Hey!" Buffy shouted, "I was serious!"

"Damn duck, you don't know what you're talking about." Willow glared, and jerked her head up when a growl echo. "Come on!" she shouted, and began jumping across the frozen rocks toward the large platform. She knew that was where the growl had come from, but how she knew, that Willow didn't know. It was a feeling; a feeling of pure darkness.

Up on the platform a large beast was kneeling on the ground, and above him stood the dark twins. "No vessel, and no help from the Heartless." Buffy's twin said staring down at the Beast, "Wow, you're a fool."

"Tell me," Willow's twin stepped back, "How'd you get here?"

The Beast looked up, "I simply believed. Nothing more to it." He growled in his deep voice, "When our world fell into darkness, Belle was taken from me. I vowed I would find her again no matter what the cost. I believed I would find her. So, here I am. She must be here. I will have her back!"

The twins smirked, "Take her if you can." Willow's twin said holding out a long dark sword.

Beast jumped forward knocking Buffy's twin to the ground as he swiped at Willow's twin, and fell back for the force of the blow when her sword connected with his chest.

"Stop!" Tara shouted as she and the others landed on the platform.

Buffy's twin stood brushing the dirt from her dark blue body suit, and smirked, "So, you finally made it, huh?"

"And about damn time, too!" Willow's twin grinned, and sheathed her weapon, "We've been waiting for you."

"We've pushed you to help us get our girls' hearts back, but you didn't want to." Buffy's twin stepped beside Willow's. "But it all ends here."

"Yes, there can't be two Keyblade masters with the same Keyblades, now can there?"

"What in hellfire are you talking about?!" Buffy growled, and felt something stir within her body, making her stronger.

Tara watched Willow as she began glowing, and could feel her fighting the darkness as she began to sweat, "We are the Keyblade masters!" Willow growled, her voice deeper than any of the others had ever heard.

"Well, then," Willow's twin smirk grew into an evil smile, "Let the Keyblades choose..."

"Their true masters!" Buffy's twin shouted, as she and Willow's twin thrust their right hands out.

Willow and Buffy stumbled as their Keyblades disappeared from their side, and into their twins' hands.

"Huh?" Donald quickly glanced from the twins to his friends.

"What?!" Goofy couldn't believe it, the Keyblades had switched masters?

"Maleficent was right," Buffy's twin said as she turned the blade over, "You don't have what it takes to help us save our girls."

Willow's twin nodded, "It's up to us. Only the Keyblade masters can open the secret door... and change the world."

"But that's impossible!" Willow shouted, "How could this have happened?!"

"We're the one's who fought our way here with the Keyblades!" Buffy stood glaring at her and Willow's twins.

"You were just the delivery girls."

"Sorry, but your part's over now." Willow's twin turned, and left with Buffy's twin at her side.

Donald grabbed Goofy's arm and tugged him toward the twins, "Come on, Goofy, let's go. We have to remember our mission."

"Oh! Well, I know the king told us to follow the key and all... But..."

"Sorry, girls..."

"Sorry?! What the fuck are you talking about?!" Faith screamed, "You're gonna leave us here to follow those bitches!? You've got to be kidding me!"

"You can't be serious." Tara shook her head, "After all they've done, you're just going to follow them?"

Willow looked at Buffy when she felt the darkness' pull on her weaken, and break when she fought back, they remembered, Let Donald and Goofy do what they want. "Let them go." Buffy kneeled next to Beast.

"It's their choice." Willow shrugged, as the guys hurriedly left to catch up with the twins.

"Don't move, you're hurt." Buffy said handing the Beast a potion.

"Why... Why did you-you come here?" Beast asked as he sat up, downing the potion at once, "I came to fight for Belle. And though I am on my own, I will fight. I won't leave without her. That's why I'm here."

"We're here to stop the Heartless." Faith had calmed down, and was now helping Beast to stand.

Tara nodded, "We're also here to help save the Princesses."

"And we aren't gonna leave until we do."

Willow turned toward the castle, "No, we're going to kill every Heartless in the way, and stop Maleficent."

Continue to Final Fantasy X-3 Chapter Forty-Five

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