“Don’t close with Xemnas.”
Vincent shut up. That was serious.
“Don’t. Ever. You got lucky this time. You got in, you got out, he didn’t see you coming. Next time, he will. You were close enough. He knows what your mind feels like.”
Even under Chaos’ mask, Vincent felt his hair prickle. “He senses minds?”
“Reads ‘em, too. If he’s close enough. Hit him from a distance. Hit him hard. And then run.” Axel drew in a sharp breath, hissed. “Even a demon doesn’t want to see what life’s like on my side of the street.”
That made even Chaos uneasy. “Xemnas can create Nobodies?” Vincent asked sharply.
“Ooo yeah. Easy.” Axel’s voice was half a laugh, half a breath from sobbing. “His element’s Void. Nothing. I’ve seen him backhand a guy right into a Dusk. Just like that.” Footsteps stopped, and there was a whisper of leather; Vincent could all but see Axel leaning against stone. “Might be more decent to just kill the guys, you know? No Heart. No memories. Just knowing you’re not you anymore. And you’d do anything just to feel again. If that means feeling people’s blood over your claws….” Axel snarled under his breath; words Vincent recognized with a shock as straight from Agrabah’s back alleys. “I’m not going out that way.”
Pain. And the determination to fight on past the pain. “There are potion sellers near the spaceport,” Vincent offered. “I’ve heard some of them don’t ask questions.”
Hope. A chill of anticipated betrayal. Desperation. “Why?”
“You remind me of someone I knew,” Vincent stated. “An anthropologist. From a place called Stargate Command.”
“Poor bastard,” Axel said wryly. “What world’s that?”
Fanged jaw dropped, Vincent shook his head. No reaction. No emotion, outside of a faint curiosity. Something is wrong here.