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Sword art online Hollow Heart: Chain of Memories Chapter 1 Castle Oblivion My name is Kazuto Kirigaya. My friends call me Kirito. I'm currently laying down in a field of grass staring up at the night sky while my fiancé, Asuna Yuuki, is quietly snoozing next to me. Why am I in a grassy plain in the middle of nowhere you ask? Well that's because I went on this crazy world hopping quest with this spiky haired kid named Sora, along with a talking duck and dog named Donald and Goofy. See, Sora was chosen by this mystical weapon called a keyblade. A magical key shaped sword with the ability to lock or unlock any lock in existence. The keyblade chooses its wielders based on the strength in their heart. I guess that means I have a strong heart as well since I was able to call upon one of my own. The duty of a keyblade wielder is to protect the worlds from these creatures of darkness called Heartless. The Heartless are spawned whenever a person succumbs to the darkness in their heart. The heartless Posses the ability to steal their victims hearts. So when one spawns, more of them follow. The end goal of the heartless is to enter a world's keyhole so that they can enter the world's core and steal the heart of that world, thus dragging it into darkness. That's where Sora, and now I come in. The keyblade can lock these keyholes and prevent the heartless from destroying that world. Unfortunately, neither, Sora or I were in possession of the keyblade until after the heartless destroyed our worlds. So, Sora and I journeyed across space to various worlds in order to seal these keyholes while looking for our friends and a way back home. Eventually we found the mastermind behind the heartless. A man by the name of Ansem. His goal was to gather the hearts of people and various worlds in one place in order to force open the door to darkness and locate Kingdom Hearts. The fabled birthplace of all hearts. Ansem believed that all hearts were born in darkness and that Kingdom hearts was darkness in its purest form. And though Ansem did succeed in opening the door to darkness, he quickly discovered that Kingdom Hearts was actually the purest form of light. The light of Kingdom Hearts destroyed Ansem. And we sealed the door to darkness away. After Ansem and the heartless were defeated, the hearts of the worlds they stole were returned to their place in the stars. So now we're looking for Sora's friend, Riku, along with Donald and Goofy's King, Mickey Mouse. The door to darkness could only be closed and locked when there were people closing and locking it on both sides. So Riku and King Mickey stayed in the realm of darkness in order to lock the door while Sora locked it from our side. After we find them we can focus on Reuniting with Yui. The daughter of Asuna and I, Then we can finally go home. After this journey was over I planned to marry Asuna and settle down with her so that we could Raise Yui and our other Daughter Strea, together. Then I was going to create a vrmmorpg based on our adventures and cash in on the royalties. Sounds easy right? Wrong. You see, we're kind of lost right now. We have no idea where in the universe we are. And without a gummi ship, we couldn't leave. And even if we did have one, the walls separating the worlds were restored. So we wouldn't be able to leave whatever world we were currently on anyway. Anyone else would say that we're in a hopeless situation. Although anyone who says that clearly hasn't met Sora. That kid makes the impossible, possible. With Sora at our side there is no doubt in my mind that we will accomplish all of our goals. Speaking of Sora, Kirito noticed that Sora was walking off without them. So Kirito decided to follow him. Sora and Kirito walked until they reached a four way intersection in the road. It was the first one they had seen since arriving in this strangely empty world. "Along the road ahead lies something you need." A voice said from behind us. The voice in question belonged to a man in a hooded black coat. Startle by the sudden appearance of the stranger we turned around to see who it was. Only to find no one there. We knew that the man wouldn't have gone very far since he had taken the trouble of speaking with us. And when we turned around again, we saw the cloaked individual standing before us. However—in order to claim it, you must lose something that is dear to you." He said. Kirito summoned his keyblade and let loose a battle cry as he attempted to run the man through, but the stranger vanished just before the blade connected. "What was that about?" Sora asked. "I don't know, but I've got a bad feeling about this." Kirito replied. Meanwhile, a blonde haired girl with blue eyes was drawing a picture of the castle she was currently at in crayon on her sketch pad. The girl was wearing a white sundress and sky blue sandles. The room she was in was entirely alabaster white. Her room didn't have much. Just a stool and a bird cage holding a tiny stuffed doll in her likeness. The doll was practically a symbol of her current imprisonment. But if what her captors said was true, she knew that there would soon be visitors. She only prayed that Sora and his friends would be able to escape the trap that was waiting for them. A trap that she herself was a part of. And was helpless to stop. Our heroes stood before a strange looking castle. The castle itself was a golden color and had blueish triangular roofs on each of its spires. The spires themselves jutted out every which way and some of the rooms appeared to be tilted. Near the upper most level was a demonic gargoyle and above it was a stain glass window depicting a bright yellow star. The land and air around the castle was similar to the heartless world they had previously been to. When they looked at the castle they felt a strange feeling. As if everything they were searching for was in the castle's depths. Kirito in particular felt a strange sense of familiarity. As if he had seen this castle before. He also felt a sense of foreboding like going into this castle would be dangerous. However the castle was the only place of shelter, and perhaps people, they had seen so far. With no other options, the seven of them entered the strange castle. The castle's interior was completely white. Except for the pale yellow doors at the entrance and back of the large foyer. The walls were lined marble columns. Between those columns were alabaster crests. And below those crests were white ceramic podiums topped with white ceramic flowers. The floor had diamond shaped patterns on either side of the center. "Hey, ya think it's okay to barge in?" Goofy asked. "But we've gotta do it. If we're gonna find the king." Donald replied. "The King! King Mickey's here?!" Goofy gasped while frantically looking around the foyer. "What makes you think that your king is here?" Asuna asked. "Something just told me he'd be here, okay?" Donald said. "Really? Cause now that ya mention it, I was kinda thinkin' the same thing. A-hyuck." Goofy replied. "Seriously? Me too! One look at this castle, and I just knew. Our very best friends—they're here." Sora said. "A-hyuck. Guess great minds think alike." Goofy said. "Wait, hey, hold on! It can't be just a coincidence!" Jiminy cricket said while hopping out of Sora's hood. "You don't mean that-" Kirito said before being cut off. "Yep, I had it too, mm-hmm! I had the exact same feeling." Jiminy said. "Maybe it's contagious." Yuuki said. "You have to admit that something strange is going on." Strea said. "We've gotta take a look around." Asuna said. "Right." Sora replied. He then turned around and was about to walk towards the door at the end of the room when he was stopped by Donald who asked where he thought he was going. "That way. To the door." Sora pointed out. "Are ya scared?" Sora asked while grinning cockily at Donald. "Aw, don't be ridiculous! Come on, let's go Goofy!" Donald ranted and then stomped towards the door. "Hey, fellahs, shouldn't we shut the door behind us before we go?" Goofy asked. However when he turned towards the entrance door, his eyes widened in shock when he saw a man in a black coat standing at the entrance. The door behind him creaked as it slowly closed. "That's it! Who are you?" Sora asked while calling out his keyblade and getting into a fighting stance. The rest of us drew our weapons and did the same. The stranger seemed totally unfazed as he slowly walked towards us. "Wak! Heartless! Oh yeah? I'll try some magic!" Donald said while hopping on one of his webbed feet and waving his staff to call out a spell. "THUNDER!" He shouted. Normally this would be the part where a bolt of electricity would strike the intended target, but for some reason nothing happened. "Come on. THUNDER! THUNDER!" Donald shouted to no avail. What was going on? Donald is an expert wizard. A simple thunder spell should have been no issue for him. "Come on… Blizzard? FIRE!" Donald futilely tried. "Why isn't it working?" Donald asked. "I should think it's obvious. The moment you set foot in the castle, you forgot every spell and every ability that you ever knew." The stranger said. 'Every spell and ability? Then that means…'everyone felt as if their reality was shattered like a baseball flying into a window 'OUR PROGRESS HAS BEEN RESET!' "In this place, to find is to lose, and to lose is to find. That is the way in Castle Oblivion." The stranger said. "Castle Oblivion?" Kirito parroted. The stranger was then enveloped by a dark portal and vanished before us. Then another portal opened and he reappeared behind us. "Here you will meet people that you have known in the past. And you will meet people you miss." The stranger said. "I miss?" sora wondered aloud before an epiphany struck. "Riku! You mean Riku's here!?" Sora asked. "If what you want… is to find him…" the stranger trailed off as he raised his hand toward Sora. A gust of wind and cherry blossoms blew from his palm. The wind was as strong as a spring gale and sora was barely able to keep his footing. While the wind blew, the stranger ode with the wind he created and phased through Sora's body. When the wind stopped, Sora jumped in the air and swung his keyblade down towards the stranger's head in an overhead strike. However the man simply vanished and left cherry blossoms in his place. The man then reappeared in front of the door at the back of the foyer. "What'd you do?" Sora asked. "I merely sampled your memories. And from them, I made this." The man said while holding out a card of some sort. The card had crown shaped points at the top. The frame of it was a sky blue color. And the artwork of the card depicted Traverse Towne. Although part of the picture was covered by mouse logo with a crown in the bottom left corner. And on the back of the card was a heart shaped logo with a crown inside it. "To reunite with those you hold dear-"he then tossed the card like a throwing knife towards Sora who promptly caught it. "What's this, a card?" Sora asked. "It is a promise for the reunion you seek. Hold the card to open the door. And beyond it, a new world." He then gestured to the pale yellow doors behind him. "Proceed, Sora. To lose and claim anew, or to claim anew only to lose…" the stranger said before vanishing once more in a dark portal. Ever since the stranger mentioned the name of Castle Oblivion Kirito's head began to throb. As time went on, the pain in his head increased further and further. Like a knife that was slowly being twisted and driven into his skull. This castle was starting to overwhelm him and when the stranger disappeared, he collapsed. His vision was getting hazy. He knew at some point he heard Sora and Asuna rush to his aid. He saw Asuna, but instead of Sora, he saw a boy with spiky blonde hair, blue eyes and a black and white jacket that was pleaded red on the inside. The boy's facial features bore a resemblance to Sora though. Kirito had no idea who this boy was, but for some reason he felt a sense of remorse towards him? As if he had done something terrible to him. As his consciousness slowly faded he uttered one last word. "Ventus…"