Chapter 6: An Expanding Conflict
Jack came out of the light corridor and found himself in Olympus Coliseum. To be precise, he was in the Town Near Thebes. All seemed quiet, but then heartless started popping out one by one. Pretty soon, it became a situation like the 1000 heartless battle in KH2. The difference was, it was 100 heartless, not 1000 so this was not as bad. However, there were neoshadows, large bodies, shadows, rhapsodies, and even invisibles. This was not going to be easy so Jack immediately got ready with keyblade in hand. Then, he heard someone run up to his side and see it's Hercules.
"Hey! You're Hercules!" Jack says to him.
"That's right. You must be Aiton, one of the Supreme Elite," he replied. "Phil is always using you guys as an example of heroes whenever he harps on me about something."
"Don't worry, I've seen you're journey to herohood," Jack replied. "I think you have proved you are one. Right now, we'll need to put that into defeating these things."
"Right behind you," Hercules said. Then both of them charged toward the horde of heartless and started fighting them. Jack (or Aiton as Hercules knows him for he basically goes by two names as do the other three elites) began hacking away at the neoshadows and rhapsodies. The invisibles stayed back and fired their own dark magic to get Jack and Hercules distracted so everyone else can swarm them. Instead, Jack and Hercules either hit the spells toward other enemies, back at them, or use other enemies as shields and have the magic hit them. Rhapsodies were treated the same way, but Jack and Hercules countered the spells those heartless fired and went after them. After a while, it seems as though little progress has been made and so Jack ran out of patience.
"Alright, I've ran out of patience," he said and he began to charge up an immense amount of power. He then was floating in mid air and began rushing and sweeping through the heartless destroying one after another. The invisibles put up a fight some, but it did not last long for them. Jack rose high above the horde and Hercules was stunned at seeing the power Jack was showing. Jack then had a mass of light energy come down from above him and explode in a big storm sending light energy everywhere. Once it all clears, all heartless are gone. Hercules looks around in shock and then turns his shocked face toward Jack who floats down after release a light storm.
"Wow! You're really strong!" Hercules said "I'd bet you'd make a great hero Aiton!"
"You can call me Jack too," Jack replied. "I was a hero a long time ago." Hercules then had confusion on his face. Jack then had disappointment in his expression as he told the tale of his ancestor Aiton, whom he now also goes by that name along with his own.
"Long before you existed," Jack began "I was a hero fighting dark keyblade warriors and protecting my friends. More like, my ancestor was that hero. My friends and I were beloved by people from our own unions. We protected everyone including Ven's, Terra's, and Aqua's predecessors even though they never asked for it. Then, a great war broke out and their bodies were destroyed. Their hearts made their way to my world and were put to sleep hidden away for thousands of years. When my friends and I came by and unlocked the chamber those hearts resided in, they entered us and became a part of us. Aiton is me and I am him. As for being a hero, heh, I doubt sometimes whether I can match up to Aiton at all."
"Don't say that. You already are like him," Hercules said. "I know the legends because my father Zeus told me them before. I watched you show amazing strength and after watching you show that power, I believe you can become a hero. You can go even farther than your ancestor ever did." Jack smirked a little and nodded.
"He's right you know," a voice said. Jack looked up and found Aiton walking toward him smiling. "He called you Aiton because he recognized you and who you are. You proved you can be a hero by defeating your dark brother. Your friends have proven too that they can surpass my friends. You have gone farther than I ever have. You all have gone farther than any of us; don't ever doubt that." Jack smiled and nodded at Aiton and he then in turn returned back to Jack. Jack then noticed someone walking toward them from Mt. Olympus and it was Phil, Hercules's trainer.
"Oi! If you didn't show up, we would have been minced meat," he said. "Jack right? You also go by Aiton too? Well, I'll call you Jack since that's what you asked Herc to call you. Great to see you come along and clean up the mess with Herc otherwise, this place will be turned into heap of garbage."
"This is Phil, my trainer," Hercules said. "He's helped me become a hero and actually has been getting people to sign up for the games coming up."
"That's right, there's one more space left for you," Phil said. "I'll sign you up if you want."
"Wait a minute Phil!" Hercules responded shocked "You said that spot was mine! What happened to signing me up?!"
"Two words: OUT...OF...YOUR...LEAGUE!" Phil said. "This kid here is so strong, he's out of your league. Plus, it would be a waste to not give it to a legend, am I right? Jack here can blow the competition out of the water. Besides, we already have someone in the games who just turned the latest schlemiel face into a raving yahoo, so Jack here can make gyros out of 'em when they go at it."
"Yeah, I guess," Hercules said disappointed and resigned.
"So whaddya think? You in?" Phil asked Jack.
"Alright, sign me up," Jack said.
"You're in? Ho oh that's great!" Phil replied gleefully "I'll be in the vestibule. Just holler when you ready to go." Phil walked back to the coliseum to sign Jack up for the games.
"Hey, good luck in the games," Hercules said.
"Thanks. I'll need it," Jack replied.
"There's a guy in there who's really strong so be aware of him," Hercules warned. "You'll most likely face him, but I think you can win."
"Got it," Jack said and he and Hercules grabbed hands like Sora and Mickey did in Re:coded when Mickey was leaving the journal of Jiminy's. Jack and Herc head toward the coliseum. Unlike in the games, there were no heartless or any enemies just outside the doors to the coliseum, which was nice because that was not what Jack needed.
When Jack entered the vestibule, he checked in with Phil and so his participation in the games was underway. The games were divided into rounds. The first round was defeating the heartless present in a little time as possible. Once the whistle blew, Jack charged toward the heartless pact containing shadow balls and rhapsodies. Jack first destroyed the rhapsodies and then moved onto the shadow balls. All were defeated in about 20 seconds, setting a new record from it previously being 32 seconds. The next round was destroy as many urns as possible in two minutes and get more points than the opponent that went just before him. Jack had to beat 123 points that his opponent put up. When the whistle blew, he began hacking away and firing powerful spells that would destroy multiple urns at once. After all was said and done in this round, Jack tallied up an Olympic games record 316 points. The third round was defeat as many heartless as possible in one minute. What made this challenging was these heartless were bigger and it did not take one hit to defeat them and so it was going to be challenging. The average number was about 21 heartless destroyed, but Jack's opponent defeated a surprising 32 heartless. Jack charged at the whistle and hacked away at the heartless. It took two to three hits most of the time to defeat one heartless. Once the round was over, Jack set another Olympic games record defeating 46 heartless.
Jack walked into the vestibule and found Hercules there waiting for him. Herc was smiling and amazed at Jack's record-setting performance.
"Wow! You have been amazing!" Herc complemented "You have been setting records left and right! I'm sure glad it's you not me in there. I could never set those records."
"Hey, never doubt your ability," Jack said. "You are Hercules, the strongest person that ever lived. You're half god and half human, you can break these records of mine one day. You have defeated four titans in one battle. I know you can do it." Herc nodded and smiled.
"Well, now it seems you are going to fight that opponent I warned you about," Herc said. "Good luck and stay on your toes." Jack nodded and checked in with Phil again. He then walked into the coliseum and stood in his place waiting for his opponent to show up. When he does, his mouth opens in shock and his face fills with shock.
"Prince Noctis," Jack said. It was none other than Noctis Lucis Caelum from Final Fantasy 15 in the flesh walking toward Jack. Jack has seen footage of Noctis fight and now he faces the very same prince from within the games. Seeing him is almost like he was taken straight from the game and put right in front of Jack as all features of him were exactly the same as shown in Final Fantasy 15. Noctis had a determined expression that was not changing when he saw Jack.
"Yes, you must be Aiton, one of the four legendary Supreme Elite," he said. "One of the greatest keyblade warriors to ever live." Noctis smiled a little, but not much. Jack went down on one knee and gave the keyblade warrior salute while bowing since Noctis was royalty, but Noctis quickly spoke up.
"No! Please stand! It shall be the other way around," he said. Jack stood up and it was now Noctis who went on one knee and bowed his head. He then stood back up and had his sword at the ready.
"I have heard your power is legendary," Noctis said. "I have longed to see what you can do."
"Same with you," Jack replied. "You can also call me Jack. I go by both of those names."
"Very well," Noct replied. He then took stance with his sword. "Let us begin!" Jack took stance with his keyblade and the two clashed. Now Jack has never fought any non keyblade wielder as strong as Noct before. Noct was as strong as he has been depicted teleported around and striking. He has done his signature warp strike. It was difficult to keep track of where he was going and planned to go because there was no pattern to his direction so Jack could only dodge out of the way. However, Noct used it and Jack dodged, but then he used Strike Raid Splicer, a move seen in KHX where he performs strike raid, teleports to where the keyblade will be, throws again, and repeats the process a couple times before giving a final blow. It actually worked on Noctis and it damaged him some. Noct was on his feet panting a little with Jack in stance still also catching his breath.
"Very good," Noct said "but I still have much left. Show me your strength!" Noct then charged right after Jack and quickly like Ventus speed, but Jack was ready and the two fought hand on hand. Noctis was changing his weapons up with his magic just like he did in Final Fantasy 15. It caught Jack off guard a little and so went defensive a little. Jack eventually got physical while fighting and so when Noct went to swing at his head, Jack parried the swing turned around and hit Noct with the hilt of his keyblade. Noct was not knocked off balance, but came back all the more. Jack had to fight now more physically, but as he did so, Noct started doing so a bit as well and struck Jack a few times across the face. Jack took it like a man and kept going.
Eventually, Jack struck Noct across his chest and spun around to take out Noctis's leg. He did so causing Noctis to slip up and begin to fall on his back, but he froze in midair for a second. Noctis teleported behind Jack and hit him in the back causing Jack to tumble forwards. He somersaulted into a kneeling position like the Black Widow did in Iron Man 2. Jack got up, took stance again and charged up light energy. Instead of charging at Noctis, he performed the attack Ben did when he escaped his dark fate during the Keyblade War in the Magic Kingdom. Jack became part of the light and it blasted upwards high into the sky. Jack then came out of the energy taking form, looked down for a second, and then charged down like a meteor toward Noctis. Noctis was going to counter by charging toward the attack, but Jack made an X with his keyblade, sent it toward Noct, and canceled all abilities Noct had. He became a sitting duck allowing Jack to strike in the middle of that X and create a large explosion sending Noct crashing toward the ground. He got up slowly and was panting heavily from the fighting while Jack floated down moderately.
"I concede defeat," Noct acknowledged. "You have truly shown your strength Aiton. I am honored to have the privilege to fight and learn from one of the greatest keyblade warriors ever."
"I am glad I have fought you too and learned from you as well," Jack replied. He then went up to Noctis and held his hand out to be shaken. Noctis smiled, chuckled a little, and shook Jack's hand.
"I wish you luck for the final round," Noct said. Suddenly, a popping sound was heard next to them and Jack saw none other than Hades standing nearby.
"Really? You want him to be lucky?" Hades asked "Kid here already has enough luck on his side as it seems. Now, I thought it would have been a big, burly guy and holy hydras it's just a little goofball!" Jack remained unflinched at Hades's presence.
"So Hades, decide to crash the party?" Jack asked.
"Heh, I wish..." Hades replied. "Not much of a party with you, a goofball here and his royal highness making everything boring and so proper and upright. It would have been a better party if you princey would have followed through on our deal." Noctis looked down in shame; Jack was confused at the statement.
"What deal Noct? What's going on?" Jack asked him. Noct did not answer at first, but then he finally spoke up.
"I had a deal with Hades here," he said. "It was I would be granted my freedom if I defeated you. I had to accept the darkness as well and make it a part of my heart should I defeat you."
"Noctis, why didn't you tell me?" Jack asked.
"I was too ashamed," Noctis replied. "How could I tell the greatest keyblade warrior that I am a pawn in a sick game? I couldn't do it. I gave everything I had in order to force you to give everything you had. Should you do that, I would have been freed."
"Oh boy..." Hades said and coughed some "you both are making me sick to my stomach with this sentimentality. I might have even upchucked a musaka that's still in my throat. Your deal wouldn't contain your true freedom your highness." Noctis looked at Hades with surprise.
"You would have been free," Hades said "but that darkness in your heart would have allowed me to say... keep you on course. It would have helped take over that Magic Kingdom that seems to constantly FIGHT BACK!" Hades said the last statement with anger and his flaming hair turned yellow and larger, his face red.
"Wait a minute, Magic Kingdom?" Jack asked putting the dots together "You mean to tell me that the attraction Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom was really you behind it all?"
"Of course it was!" Hades replied "My good friend Maleficent wanted me to help spread darkness around so we can take over a few worlds. That kingdom would have been perfect for us, but then that old coot Merlin got involved and started recruiting pesky humans, and taught them how to fight!" Hades got angry once again at the statement. "If you were out of the way, it would have made this effort of mine a walk in the park, so instead, how about you come over to us and start making the right choices?" He walked up to Jack holding out his hand in offering like he did with Aqua in BbS. Jack was appalled at the offer.
"Get lost! I've already had enough with darkness!" Jack shouted in anger. Hades stepped back and dropped his hand.
"Well that wasn't nice," he said. "A 'no thank you your godliness' would have sufficed, but I can still, let's see, destroy you. For the last round, I'm your opponent, and I have more darkness for you than what you get at Christmas." He then disappeared leaving Noctis and Jack to themselves.
"That Hades used me as a tool for his own purposes," Noctis said in frustration. He then looked at Jack. "Aiton, please give Hades his due payment. I am no puppet nor to be used as one. I was going to obtain my freedom even if it meant darkness had to reside there, but it was not to be a doorway for Hades to enter and control me like Pinocchio. He has lied to me and now he must pay, so I wish for you to do just that." Jack nodded understanding what must be done. Noctis was an honorable young man. He had to do what he did not want to in order to be freed from his chains only to be lied to. Now, Jack must finish it all in the final round of the games.
Jack checked in one last time with Phil after resting up and then proceeded to enter into the coliseum. Hades appeared again, but was all alone. Jack had his keyblade summoned already when he entered.
"So, it's just you," Jack asked Hades.
"Just a minute, I have a guest coming to the party," Hades said and he looked into space as if he knew something was imminent. Suddenly, the ground began to shake and Jack was able to hear big booms like footsteps. Hades nodded and looked at his wrist pretending there was a watch on it and nodded some more.
"Right on schedule!" Hades said. The booms became louder and more thunderous and soon behind Hades, Jack saw a giant appear and it climbed and stepped over the wall. Jack was shocked to see this titan because it wasn't one of Hades's titans Sora or Hercules has fought, it was him! Jack pretended to be Jackzilla when he hung out with Ben one day before all these events transpired. Now, Jack is looking at himself in that form: light navy blue sweatpants, barefoot, and shirtless.
"What?!" Jack said stunned. Hades was smirking the whole time at Jack.
"You know, I noticed what happened to you in that kingdom I talked about," Hades said. "I saw what happened to you during that war. It was beautiful because I saw what a real titan looks like. You almost did what my titans should have done, but fell short. You inspired me to do something devilish. I even ironed out the mistakes you made when you were a titan. Now, this one is even stronger and the perfect titan that neither the snow cone, dirt pile, or any of those could ever be." Jackzilla roared and pounded its chest after Hades finished speaking. Jack growled a little at the sight of all of this. Hades basically used darkness to create a brand new titan for himself. This time, it was Jackzilla that Hades used as a model. Jack is looking at himself in giant titan form.
"Oh, did I mention the second rule says 'combatants can call for back up'?" Hades asked "Better find yours pally." Noctis stepped forward from behind Jack.
"I will be his back up," Noctis said. Jack raised his hand to stop Noctis.
"No Noctis," Jack said.
"You wish to do this alone?" Noctis asked.
"Yes, I must do it alone," Jack responded. "You asked me to set you free and now I will. Also, the Supreme Elite have been in situations like this before." When Jack said this, Noctis stood up straight and bowed to Jack.
"Very well Aiton," he said. "I shall leave it to you." Jack nodded and turned back to the god and giant.
"All yours tubby," Hades said to Jackzilla. Jack realized that this is just like in BbS when Hades let Aqua fight the Ice Titan. Jack thought alright, I guess I get to see what it was like for when Shane and Ben had to fight me when I was like this. The giant took a few steps toward Jack, roared and began to attack Jack. It made a fist and swung down to crush Jack, but Jack moved out of the way and started hitting its hand with his keyblade. He had to also go for the ankles and feet along with the other hand. Sometimes, if it was possible, Jack went for the head. The stomach he avoided since it was too thick and the giant was too big and so it wouldn't do any damage. The giant titan kept on swinging at Jack, but Jack kept moving out of the way. However, there were some close calls. When Jack was attacking the feet and ankles once, Jackzilla rose his foot up high over Jack's head and then went to stomp on Jack. Luckily, Jack got out of the way just in time or he would have been crushed. In return for the stomp, Jack used mine spells. Jack got out from underneath the titan and started firing fire and ice spells at the titan.
He then threw his keyblade at the beast's head. That turned out to be a mistake as Jackzilla swiped away the keyblade thrown and in a fast moment, reached down and grabbed Jack in a tight grip. Jack couldn't do much as the titan brought Jack up to its face while growling. Jack resummoned his keyblade, but did not strike the fist that held him or it would grasp him tighter. The giant looked Jack over still growling and then roared loudly. It then began to open its mouth and bring Jack to it. Basically, it was going to eat Jack! Jack had to think of something fast and then it hit him. He created a large fireball at the end of his keyblade and pointed it toward the giant's face, particularly the mouth.
"If I'm your meal," Jack said "then you'll need some spice to go along with it." He then fired the fireball and it hit the titan's open mouth and exploded. The beast roared and let go of Jack immediately who floated down modestly to the ground. The giant covered its face in pain and Jack noticed darkness seeping out from within its hands. Immediately, Jack realized something about this.
"So this is how they managed to beat the darkness of mine," Jack said to himself. Hades once again lied. He directly copied what Jack did as a giant in the Magic Kingdom against Ben and Shane. He did not iron out the so-called mistakes, they are ingrained in the replica he sees before him. Light surrounded Jack and he immediately started slashing Jackzilla with great power. He did so four times and then charged all of that light power into his keyblade, fired it at the giant, and watched as it hit the titan in a large explosion. The explosion created a huge flash and once it disappeared, the giant turned into a mass of black darkness and disappeared into the air.
"Alright, that's it. Coming through!" Hades said. Now, Jack is onto part 2 of this final round of the games. It was just like when Aqua fought Hades. It was challenging since Hades was a god, but Jack kept his momentum going. In a matter of time, Jack fired a large beam of light and it enveloped Hades. He was sent backwards and hit the wall of the coliseum hard. He was bent over and panting as he slowly walked to Jack in the middle of the coliseum. He then stops, catches his breath, and then stood up.
"Figures that faux pas was a mistake," Hades said "I should have done my own thing than listen to him. Stay tuned for the bonus round!!" Hades then disappeared. Jack was confused for a moment when a dark corridor opens up and a dark keyblade warrior comes out of it. This one was wearing brown and some light blue and black clothes. He was Jack's height and size. He didn't have the same body composition as Jack though. He did look to be younger than Jack by a year or two.
"Man, even you fighting your own devil wasn't enough," he said.
"So you're the one who used darkness to great the titan version of me," Jack claimed.
"That's right," the warrior replied. "I figured that I could make a better version of what darkness did to you and that would destroy you. Instead, it turned out I couldn't iron out the mistakes. So, if that doesn't kill you then I will in the bonus round!" The warrior summoned his keyblade and took stance. Jack had his already so he just took stance. Then, they both clashed and fought each other. Jack wasn't really intimidated because this enemy was not that tough actually. He wasn't a pushover, but he seemed to be like any other dark keyblade warrior. Jack parried a strike and back kicked the kid and sent him backwards. He was sent flying backwards and the kid was on the ground. Something was rather interesting about this kid, for this darkness wasn't exactly out of pure evil. It is more like the true person this kid possibly could be is imprisoned in a dark cage. Jack actually walked toward the kid a little as he laid on the ground. Is this kid...weeping?
"Hey kid," Jack called "are you an enemy or friend?" The kid got up and it looked like some light was seeping out of him and his face showed sadness and pain.
"Return everything I had," the kid said in sorrow. Then, darkness took a hold of him and he once again was the dark enemy Jack first saw. Jack fought him again and stabbed the kid's chest where his heart is. The darkness came out of him and disappeared into the air. The kid's clothes turned from black, light blue, and brown to a red and white color.
"Oh my! What happened?" the kid asked. Jack understood now; this kid was under darkness's grasp. All freedom and free will was taken away from him and apparently more was also taken.
"Who are you?" Jack asked.
"I'm Verum," he replied.
"What happened to you that darkness overtook you?" Jack asked.
"Dark warriors came to my world and caused chaos and ruin," he said "it was a bloody battle that I along with other keyblade bearers of light fought. It was a massacre to watch. My friends were all killed by those demons. I felt my world shatter and revenge became my only desire. Anger also filled the void in my heart and what I hated the most enveloped my heart and I became part of the darkness. I was tasked by the Dark Elite to seek you out and destroy you."
"When and where did this happen?" Jack asked.
"It happened in Disneyland in Paris just a month ago," Verum said. Jack had chills up and down his back at the statement. This conflict has now expanded to more than just Walt Disney World. It has gone on to the other Disney resorts like Disneyland, Disney Paris, basically just about all resorts. Thank goodness it has only been restricted to just those areas, or at least he hoped it did. A dark corridor opened up and a person in a black coat came out of it smiling. Only his mouth was visible while the rest was covered in shadow.
"I did indeed," he said. "I wanted to see if you could recreate the darkness that transformed Jack into the monster he was in the Magic Kingdom and should he be defeated, you bring him to me or if you killed him, even better."
"So you must also be the one responsible for the chaos that killed his friends," Jack accused him.
"Ah! Correct again!" the mysterious figure said jubilantly. Verum took a step forward to attack, but Jack put his arm in front of him stopping him. "Boy, you are a smart one. Then I guess you know why I'm here. Your world cannot go on the way it is where free will runs rampant. Know what happens when it does? Chaos so order needs to be established. The more you protect your world, the more you allow the chaos to run free. I am here to tell you to stop such craziness. You wouldn't want your people to destroy your world would you?" Jack was not buying the explanation. It sounded like a good one, but this was manipulation.
"You really think I will buy that?" Jack asked "I know darkness and I know you are trying to manipulate me. I'm not that stupid."
"My oh my you are sharp!" the figure said. "Well, then I will tell you this straight up then. We, the Dark Elite will explain to you why you should stop. That will happen when the time is right." A dark corridor opened up and the figure was about to walk through, but Jack called to him one last time.
"Hold it! Aren't you going to reveal yourselves to us?" Jack asked. The figure stopped and looked back at Jack.
"When you have gathered together, then you'll see the truth," he replied and then he walked through the corridor and disappeared along with the corridor. Jack now realized that he had to find a way to get together with his friends in order to find out who these Dark Elite are. Maybe then it will help defeat them. Right now, as time ticks on, the conflict is expanding more and more.
Edited by KingdomHearts3, 04 June 2016 - 04:29 PM.