His control was slipping. His hunger was unsatiable. Sora couldn't hold back anymore. His friend came to ask for help, covered in his own blood and all Sora could think about was how life would taste.
His appetite changed. Of course, nothing replaced his real hunger, but he would ask for his meat to be almost rare. It didn't taste the same. Everything he eat tasted disgusting and inedible. But, sitting at the kitchen table with his parents, he forced the food down and stared at their exposed throats, lusting for the life that one vein possessed.
It was becoming too much to bear.
Riku sat on a tree, Kairi sitting at his feet. They frowned out at the beautiful ocean as it shone in the morning sun.
"Where's Sora?" Kairi asked no one in particular. Riku knew it wasn't directed towards him, but rather to herself.
The silver-haired bow answered anyway. "Dunno. I went to his house last night and his mom said he was tired. The last two years really wore him out."
"I suppose it would." Kairi sighed, looking at her pink sneakers.
Riku looked up and stared at the yellow fruit that hung above him. The Paopu fruit. He once thought about sharing it with Kairi. He adored her. But found himself thinking Sora was better suited for her. After all, she was the Princess of Heart and he was a Warrior of the Light. Sora would be happy with Kairi and vise versa.
Riku didn't resent that. In fact, he didn't care so much anymore about his old crush. She was one of his best friends and they would stay that way. He would support them.
And now, Sora was too tired to leave the house. Had he fallen ill? Had he gained some psychological problem from saving so many worlds... twice? Something was different about the brunette.
Opening the door for the older teen, Sora winced at the sunlight. He gave a hard swallow and greeted Riku with a cheerful grin. When Riku saw him, he was pale and his eyes were dark. He looked horrible and Riku laughed as he told him so. Sora laughed, saying he wasn't feeling well.
But the last time he was at Sora's house, his mother wouldn't let him see his friend. She looked incredibly worried herself and tired, as if she was up all night, worrying over her son.
Riku told her he'd come back later. Well, it was later.
"Let's go see him." Riku suggested, jumping off of the tree. Kairi was on her feet in a second, a bright smile gracing those full lips.
Grabbing his hand, Kairi practically dragged Riku to the brunette's house. She chattered happily and Riku was only half listening. Knocking on the door, they waited a while until the door opened.
It was just like the last time. Sora winced in the sunlight, as if it were too bright and too painful, and gave a fake cheery greeting.
"Hey, Sora." Kairi smiled back, Riku noticed, almost forced. "Can we come in?"
Sora seemed to struggle for an answer before he nodded and openned the door wide to let them in. He stepped back into the artificial light and Riku saw the boy's paper-white skin and dark, threatening eyes. It was as if something possessed Sora.
"You look aweful...." Kairi said as Riku closed the door behind him.
"Yeah." was his answer as he lead them through the house up to his bedroom. It was as messy as ever. Sora let them in and closed the door behind him, leaving the lights off and the curtains drawn, he crossed over to the window seat and sat with one leg propped up on the cushion. He stared at them, as if waiting for them to say something.
Yes, something was very wrong with Sora.
"How about we turn on the lights--" Riku mumbled as he moved towards the light switch.
"Please don't." Sora said curtly, making Riku look at him. "It hurts my eyes...." He repaired.
Kairi crossed to Sora by the window seat and sat on the ground in front of him, looking him over carefully. Riku sat on the bed casually, watching Kairi watching Sora. The uncomfortable silence was unbearable.
"What's wrong, Sora?" Kairi asked.
Sora looked towards the window that was covered by drapes. His lips formed a light frown and his eyes were searching for something. Riku wondered what.
"I wish I could tell you."
"But you can." Riku stated, as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. "We're your best friends. Why would you keep something from us."
"Because, if I tell you, you'll hate me... fear me..." Sora explained, leaning against the wall and staring at the ceiling.
"We could never hate you!" Kairi cried.
A half-smile crossed Sora's lips. Riku had to admit, the boy looked terrifying. He didn't understand why. Swallowing, Riku tried to get comfortable on the bed once more, but it was damn near impossible.
"You'd be surprised," Sora said in a dark voice, "who and what you can despise."
"But you're Sora. The only people who hate you are evil."
"Should I take that as a compliment, Riku?"
Riku's frown deepened. "That doesn't sound like you."
"Things changed that I wish hadn't." Sora whispered, but it sounded more like shouting.
"Can we help?" Kairi asked.
"No," he shook his spiky head. "You can't."
Riku got to his feet and stood before Sora, looming over him. This wasn't what Sora sounded like. Riku had half a mind to slap him across the face, to snap him back to reality, to bring back the old Sora. The boy looked up at him, curiosity read across his pale face. Those dark eyes bore into his light teal ones. Those once bright blue eyes had become darker, looking more like sapphire than aquamarine. Black circled those blue irises, making them even more terrifying. It was very hard to intimidate him with that gaze.
"Sora, you've saved us more times then we can count. There has to be something we can do. We owe you." Riku said as he gruffly grabbed a hold of Sora's wrist. As soon as he touched the skin, he released it, backing away in shock. His wrist was hard, like marble and his skin was cold like ice.
A rueful smile came to Sora's face. His eyes told Riku he was sorry.
"What... what the hell?"
"Unless you can reverse death, I wouldn't try helping me."
Riku glanced at Kairi who looked confused from himself to Sora. Sora continued smiling the same way and Riku felt the sudden urge to bolt. Run far away from Sora. Sora was his enemy. Sora was evil. Sora was a monster. Sora was going to kill him.
No, he told himself. Sora was Sora. Sora was his best friend. He was the same cheerful person he's always been. He was just sick. Maybe he had some rare disease where your skin gets cold instead of hot and maybe he felt so sick, he wasn't acting like himself.
Riku realised he wasn't breathing and had to catch his breath. Kairi grabbed a hold of Sora's hand, openning her mouth to talk, and withdrew it immediately. She looked up at Sora, shocked. But that didn't stop her like it stopped Riku. She slowly ran her hand over Sora's before linking their fingers.
"Please tell us." she begged.
Sora didn't look at her. His face didn't flush like it normally would have.
"I don't even know what exactly is wrong with me." he said quietly. "Maybe an infection of some sort."
"And infection? From what?"
"A bite." the brunette looked at Kairi. "I don't know why, but someone bit me and now I'm different."
"Different? How so?" Riku asked, sitting on the floor where he was.
"First," Sora started, "It was the sun. Suddenly, it was too bright and it hurt to look any light. Then, I was getting cold and then I didn't even feel it anymore. And my appetite changed. I threw up anything I ate and now it all just tastes disgusting. I keep thinking about... I hunger for something else. It's gross, but, I need it. Now, my senses are heightened and I don't sleep and I don't want to sleep. When I try to, I can't.
"I can hear you heartbeats. And I smell you. You each have your own scents." At this point, Sora looked at Kairi with longing. "Kairi, you have no idea how sweet you smell. It's so wonderful and del--" he stopped himself. Riku found himself unable to keep his eyes off of Sora, although the boy was scaring him. Those haunting eyes found his. "Riku. You smell... indescribable. It isn't good, but it isn't bad." He looked away from them, rather, he found something interesting on the ceiling. "I taste the air. I feel every thread on this cushion. I can see every texture, every dust mote, every pollen particle.
"I'm scared of myself and my own desires. And I'm positive you two can't help me."
"What kind of desires?" Kairi asked, folding her hands on her lap.
Sora frowned and turned back to the curtained window. His mouth moved but didn't make any sounds. Riku read those familiar lips and felt his jaw drop.
It sounded crazy, but it sounded so true. Riku found himself not breathing again, and he couldn't. His chest hurt from the lack of oxygen and his head spun.
"Sora... are you trying to tell us... you're a vampire?"
Sora looked directly at Riku with those scary eyes and got to his feet. He crossed over to his friend and knelt before him, taking Riku's hand and placing it over his chest. The boy's chest was unmoving in every way. He wasn't breathing. There was no heartbeat. And frozen hands held one of his against this and he couldn't pull away. He tried, but they were like a statue's.
"What do you think?" he asked rhetorically.
Riku tugged at his hand and Sora released it and the boy was on his feet in a moment, running from the house. Running from his friends. Running from the dark look in Sora's eyes that terrified him.