A/N: I’m playing KHII for what might just be the 20th time and this just popped into my head. I missed writing Sora and Riku. Also, I ship them. Really hard. But look, no slash here! Well, unless you want to see it that way. Takes place during KHII in the World That Never Was, after Riku joins the party. Now part of a drabble series ~ Natural Progression. Let’s see how this all works out.
Disclaimer: I don't own Kingdom Hearts, but I do get a kick out of writing for the fandom.
Summary: Sora and Riku have a discussion and come to a compromise. [drabble, no pairing]
Part I: Compromise
Riku’s presence was something Sora really had to get used to again. No matter how happy or relieved he’d been upon reuniting with Riku after so long he couldn’t help the awkward feeling after he joined their party, especially since his best friend has at one point seen his newer companions as cheap replacements. Donald and Goofy didn’t seem to notice or care, but Sora still felt a little ungainly – like he’d suddenly developed a new limb that wasn’t sure how to sync with the others.
He was fast and powerful though, a welcome addition against the Nobodies in the Organization’s castle, and willing to initiate cooperative attacks Sora had never gotten the chance to try. Sora had also noticed very quickly that Riku was intensely focused on his health and well-being in battle, often jumping in to shield him against the Sorcerer’s magic attacks or the Assassin’s stealth strikes and healing Sora as if it came as a second nature. This behavior had thrown Sora in a complete loop; Donald and Goofy were a big help in a fight to be sure, but neither of them acted like a bodyguard when Heartless or Nobodies attacked. However more than once Sora had been just about to administer a hi-potion for the wounds he was sustaining when Riku called his name and healed him completely; the hi-potion, drunk before he could even realize what had happened, had no effect.
The third time it happened, Sora decided it was time for he and Riku to have a little chat. He sent Donald and Goofy off to go look for items around the Castle That Never Was, then turned to his best friend, who was leaning against a railing idly spinning his new keyblade in his hand.
“So what’s up?” Riku asked casually, allowing the keyblade to disappear.
“Look man, can you give me a heads-up before you do that?”
Riku raised a silver eyebrow at him. “Didn’t think you’d protest getting healed when you’re in a tight spot, Sora.”
Sora huffed. “I already had a hi-potion out.”
“You were too slow. That Berserker was going to beat you upside the head, so I healed you before it could do massive damage. You’re welcome, by the way.”
“Thank you,” Sora muttered impatiently. “I can take care of myself, you know.”
Riku nodded. “I know,” he answered quietly. “You’ve made it this far without totally getting your ass kicked, so I guess I can give you that,” he said with a small smile.
Sora shot him a withering glance. “I’ve fought plenty of times without Donald or Goofy’s help, too. I’m not completely helpless or anything. So you don’t have to always look out for me.”
“I know,” Riku sighed, his gloved hand clapping against Sora’s shoulder. “You’re a big boy now. But I will keep an eye out and heal you when you need it.”
“Ok, ok,” Sora snorted at the ‘big boy’ comment. “I’m just kinda used to taking care of myself now, so I have to get used to it.”
“Alright then. But you can trust me to heal you when you need it the most – I promise you that,” the taller boy said, determination reverberating in his voice. “I’m not about to let you die this close to the finish line.”
“Just – give me a heads-up, yeah? If you keep healing me when I’m in the middle of a hi-potion we’re going to have a problem. I’m not made of hi-potions, you know,” Sora said mock-sternly with his hands on his hips.
“Hm,” Riku smirked. Then he pulled Sora into a loose chokehold and rubbed his knuckles into the brunet’s thick hair, saying, “That’s what I’m here for, doofus.”
“Oh really?” Sora grunted, tugging himself out of Riku’s grasp.
“That and to make sure you don’t hog all the credit,” Riku said offhandedly, still smirking. “After all, I was the one keeping things in check while you, lazy bum, were taking a glorified nap.”
“Yeah, you’ll have to tell me all about that some day. Specifically about the part where Roxas kicked the crap out of you.”
“I didn’t think he’d be that strong,” Riku admitted with a shrug. “Although, now that I’m thinking about it, I might’ve caught him on a really bad day. A lot of weird stuff was going on around then, it probably had something to do with him and the Organization.”
“Well, I guess we should get going,” Sora sighed after a few moments of silence. “Xemnas can’t be too far ahead.”
Riku nodded and pushed himself off his perch. “Actually Sora, there was something I wanted to ask.”
Riku dropped his voice low and leaned in slightly. “So, um, what was with the tears?”
Sora started at the question and the mention of his emotional display during their reunion, turning his head to the side, blocking his darkening blush from Riku’s sight, and scratching nervously at the back of his head. “Um. Yeah. Well . . .”
“Something you want to say?” Riku said, completely teasing now.
Sora looked back up at him, grinning broadly after a moment of recovery from his embarrassment. “Yeah, actually. It’s good to have you back, man,” he said, giving Riku’s bicep a friendly punch. The words I missed you caught in his throat and died, because he really didn’t need Riku to remind him how much of a sap he was. “Now let’s go take out some Nobodies!” he shouted spiritedly, sprinting off towards the exit.
Riku chuckled as he watched him go; before he started jogging after the keyblade master he thought warmly, You, too.
Reposting some of these as a drabble series, because now there are plans to expand this little universe – not sure how far yet, we’ll see where this takes me.