For six years, Kingdom Hearts fans have been waiting for the third game in the series. And now with six games in total, the plot is a near labyrinthine mess of connections and revelations. It's with that in mind that I have decided to unravel the plot of the entire series for those who may have missed the opportunity to play some of the spin-offs and those who just want a refresher before diving into the new game. Today we explore Part 10 of our ongoing feature.
With Sora, Donald, and Goofy asleep, Riku joining Mickey and DiZ, and all the Organization XIII members at Castle Oblivion dead save for Axel, the story returns to Roxas. While Axel and the others were gone, he was sent out on missions with Xion, who still insists on staying hidden beneath the Organization's cloak. Number 14 also stays silent, never once saying a word to Roxas. He still goes to the clock tower every day to eat ice cream while waiting for Axel's return. As he and Xion work together, his partner begins to open up by saying Roxas’s name. It’s a start, but Xion has still yet to remove the hood.
However, on their third day working together, Xion finally lowers her hood and reveals that she is a girl. They set out on their mission to defeat a large Heartless, but Roxas is disarmed during the fight. His Keyblade slides over to Xion who picks it up and uses it to defeat the Heartless. To celebrate their victory, Roxas brings her to the clock tower, and they share sea-salt ice cream together. Roxas and Xion have their first full conversation, and they promise to have ice cream with Axel as well when he returns. When that happens then all three of them can be friends.
Roxas arrives in the briefing room the next day to find Xigbar and Demyx talking. Xigbar tells him that at least one of the Organization members sent to Castle Oblivion was killed. He tries to get more information out of Saïx to see if Axel was one of the members lost but is instead sent to Agrabah with Xigbar. Worried about Axel, Roxas has trouble concentrating on the task at hand. But Xigbar expresses no remorse at the thought of his comrades dead and makes light of it. Still, they work together to complete their reconnaissance mission and discover that the city has been hit by several strong sandstorms recently. Much of Agrabah has been damaged though the city has been working hard to keep things from falling apart. Confirming their theory, they discover Aladdin and Jasmine discussing the recovery effort and the fact that Genie has been gone for some time.
As they go to leave Agrabah, Roxas collapses and sees a vision of Naminé. He’s brought back to his room where he lies comatose. Xemnas and Saïx visit him, knowing that Naminé has begun her work of messing with Sora’s memories while he travels through Castle Oblivion. Once she strips all of his memories, Roxas will finally reawaken. In the meantime, they plan to continue collecting hearts with Xion’s Keyblade. They reveal that they had always intended for the girl to gain control over it. Xemnas also asks Saïx if the Chamber of Waking (which contains the sleeping Ventus) has been found yet, but no progress has been made. Before leaving, he comments that Roxas has once again been taken away by sleep.
Three weeks pass and Roxas is still asleep, but Xion has been visiting him every day. She talks to him at his bedside, telling him about the new worlds that she has visited and leaving behind a seashell for each day that he’s been asleep. But the next day, Roxas finally awakens with a vision of Sora entering the pod in Castle Oblivion and the voice of Kairi ringing in his ears. He goes to the briefing room to find it empty and decides to spend the rest of the day at Twilight Town’s clock tower. He’s discovered there by Xion, who’s shocked to see him awake. She sits down with him and gives him another seashell, telling him to hold it to his ear. He does so, hearing the ocean but also seeing a scene of Sora and Kairi watching the sunset on Destiny Islands. It’s a familiar feeling, but he doesn’t understand where these memories are coming from.
Roxas’s missions begin again the next day though the first thing he asks is the fate of those who went to Castle Oblivion. Saïx informs him that every member who went to the Castle was wiped out. Roxas tries to find out more details, but Saïx just tells him to get to work. He arrives in Agrabah to find Aladdin and Jasmine discussing a pattern they have been noticing. Right before a sandstorm hits, the Heartless always appear. They’re worried, but there’s little they can do about it at the moment. As Roxas watches them, he gets a strange feeling that he’s seen them before. He goes to his clock tower after his mission in the vain hope that Axel will be there, but there’s no sign of his friend.
Weeks pass with no sign of Axel. Roxas has been forced to take on missions alone due to the loss of half of the Organization’s manpower. He’s barely said anything to anyone, instead feeling a strange lump in his throat. But Xigbar is still giving him a hard time for even caring. It’s with his hope almost fully gone that Axel suddenly appears, still very much alive. Roxas is absolutely surprised, but Axel brushes it off that only the weak ones were killed. He tells Axel how worried he’s been though that should be impossible since they’re Nobodies. In the end, the two have ice cream together just like the old days.
While they eat, Axel tells him he was gone for so long because he had to sort out his thoughts. Roxas nods at this and tells him that he started bringing Xion to their spot since he had left. Axel is surprised to see that Xion’s opened up so much while he’s been gone and that she and Roxas have become friends. When Axel returns to the base, he’s immediately confronted by Saïx. He asks how Naminé got free, but Axel plays it off like he doesn't know. Saïx asks after Ventus’s chamber, but it still hasn't been found. Axel then commends Saïx for rooting out all the traitors before the mission though he reveals that he was the one who took care of Zexion. Saïx isn’t surprised since he’s the one who ordered him killed.
The next day finds Roxas and Axel paired up for a mission once again. They arrive in Agrabah and spot Pete, former resident of Disney Town, looking around for something. It appears he’s searching for a magic lamp in the hope of getting his wishes granted. Axel immediately wants to start following Pete instead of doing the mission. Roxas tries to protest but gives in when Axel mentions that following suspicious characters is also part of the job. They tail him until he arrives at the Cave of Wonders but lose track of him inside. Axel suggests they give up on following him for now and finish their mission.
At their usual spot, Axel mentions that Roxas is far more outgoing now. Roxas thinks Axel is different too, and his friend mentions that it’s because he met someone. Roxas has no idea that Axel is referring to his meeting with Sora, but shrugs it off. He keeps an eye out for Xion to arrive, but there’s no sign of her. She’s still missing the next day, and no one has seen any sign of her in ten days. Axel offers to ask Saïx about her and see if he knows where she has disappeared to.
While Axel looks into that, Roxas is sent to Beast’s Castle (land of Beauty and the Beast) for his next mission. Upon entering the world, Roxas immediately hears the roar of the Beast and decides to investigate. He finds a secret entrance into the castle entryway where he’s confronted by his target Heartless. Thinking that the roar he heard before came from the Heartless, Roxas goes to leave before hearing it again. Rather than exploring further, he decides to go meet up with Axel at the clock tower. But there’s no sign either Axel or Xion there.
He runs into Axel the next morning and is informed that Xion was sent out on a mission but never returned. Roxas is worried about why her mission is taking so long but is thrilled when Axel reveals that today their mission is to track her down. While investigating around Twilight Town, they overhear Hayner and Olette, two of the local kids, talking about strange occurrences within the town. It turns out that it was just a list of local mysteries that were being compiled by Pence, Hayner and Olette's friend. All of them sound spooky but are easily explained away except one. Axel and Roxas decide to check out this last one that is located in the forest outside of town. There they discover a large Heartless camouflaging itself amongst the trees. During the battle, Xion appears and is surprised to see Roxas suddenly there but is struck by the Heartless because of the distraction.
Axel and Roxas finish off the Heartless, and Roxas rushes to Xion’s side. She’s fine, if a little dazed. They all decide to return to the clock tower in order to recuperate and hear why Xion’s been gone for so long. Strangely, Xion’s hood appears to be on while Axel looks at her but is off when Roxas sees her. The two don’t notice this though as Xion explains that she cannot summon her Keyblade anymore. That’s why she couldn’t defeat the Heartless in the forest. The situation makes her worry about her position within the Organization since, without her Keyblade, she is essentially useless to them. To save her, they decide that she and Roxas should always go on missions together so Roxas can pull double duty with his Keyblade. Roxas is all for this plan, and Xion hesitantly agrees to it.
Axel’s help prompts Xion to ask if they’re friends now as well. He says they are which causes Xion’s hood to now be lowered in his eyes. He’s surprised to see her similarity to Naminé. He doesn't say anything though and joins in with Roxas’s and Xion’s laughter. The next day the two of them are able to convince Saïx to let them do missions together despite the fact that the Organization is shorthanded. Their first mission together is further exploring the Cave of Wonders. During their search, they’re found by Pete who accuses them of trying to find the magic lamp. Roxas tries to explain that they don’t know what he’s talking about, but Pete attacks them anyway. They defeat him but the battle causes a cave-in, forcing all three of them to escape the cave.
Roxas and Xion end up lost in the middle of the desert but are found by Genie and the Magic Carpet. A memory of Sora meeting the two flashes through Roxas’s mind though he ignores it for now. Genie explains that he was on his way back to Agrabah when the Magic Carpet suddenly raced off, saying it saw a friend. It had mistaken Roxas for Sora though Roxas doesn't know why. Genie has no idea who Roxas is but doesn't concern himself about it. Instead, he explains that he’s off to see his friend Aladdin after being away for so long. The two tell Genie about the sandstorms hitting Agrabah and how Aladdin says the city shouldn't rely on Genie’s magic. Genie decides to adhere to Aladdin’s wishes but still gets rid of an incoming sandstorm. While he is distracted, Roxas and Xion sneak away.
At the clock tower, Axel asks the two how their mission went. They tell him about all the people they met in Agrabah and discuss what it means for friends to be inseparable. Axel explains that even if friends are apart they are still friends because of the bond they made. It’s difficult for him to put into words since he has no heart. The next mission brings Roxas and Xion back to Beast’s Castle. Roxas tells her about the roar he heard before, and they wonder if they’ll find out what was making the sound. While exploring, they hear the voices of Lumiere and Cogsworth talking about how their master didn't want to leave his room. The two don’t understand how a candle and a clock can talk but are curious as to who they mean by Master.
They sneak past Lumiere and Cogsworth and find themselves at a large door. Just as they wonder if is is the Master’s room, a loud roar erupts from behind it. Roxas sneaks a peek inside the room and finds it in complete disarray. Standing in the center is the Beast, who is staring at a rose under a glass case. He is furious that Belle has refused to join him for dinner, but Roxas is just confused that this beast is the master of the castle. They decide to take all this information back to Saïx. Days pass without incident until Xemnas summons all of the Organization members to a great balcony. He reveals to them a heart-shaped moon hanging in the sky. All of their hard work has finally made Kingdom Hearts appear. Though it is not yet complete, Kingdom Hearts will eventually grant them power over the human heart rather than being subservient to it like the humans.
The thought sticks with Roxas as he and Xion go to their next mission. It brings them back to Beast’s Castle where Lumiere is still fretting over the Beast and Belle forgiving one another. He decides to go see Belle hoping that she’ll be the one to take the first step. Roxas and Xion are curious as to what is going on but decide to continue with their mission instead. They find the Heartless they’re after, but it’s suddenly dispatched by the Beast. Roxas is impressed by his strength but notes the oddity of the master of the castle fighting the Heartless since the Organization’s master, Xemnas, only issues orders. Xion wonders if it’s because the Beast has something he wants to protect. The two decide to call it a day and head off to meet with Axel.
They talk about Kingdom Hearts and the possibilities it may bring. But Roxas isn't so sure about it. He doesn't understand why having a heart is important at all or whether it’s worth fighting all of the Heartless. Axel explains that they’re fighting to find out exactly why it’s so important. Roxas is still unsure but agrees with Axel anyway. As time passes, Xion begins to worry about how much longer they can keep fooling everyone else about her lack of a Keyblade. Roxas isn’t too worried, but Axel knows it’s only a matter of time before someone finds out.
There’s nothing they can do about it at the moment though so they continue talking about other things. It’s then that Axel says that he can still remember things from before he was a Nobody. This is disheartening to Roxas and Xion since neither of them can remember their lives as humans. Roxas asks Axel what he was like as a human, but Axel just shrugs it off and says he was pretty much the same. Roxas then says that he can’t even remember anything from his first week as a Nobody. Xion admits that she’s the same, and the two of them wonder what kind of people they were like before. Axel, knowing the answer, says nothing. At the same time, unknown to everyone within the Organization, Naminé and DiZ have left Castle Oblivion and brought Sora, Donald, and Goofy's pods inside the abandoned mansion in Twilight Town.
The next day, Roxas and Xion are met with bad news as Saïx informs them that they’ll have to separate in order to take down two major Heartless monsters that appeared in two different worlds. They try to argue, but it’s the interruption by Axel that allows them to stick together. He explains that one of the monsters is way too tough for Roxas and that he’ll soften it up so they can finish it off another day. Saïx relents but states that starting tomorrow, they’ll be working solo again. As Numbers 13 and 14 leave, Saïx turns to Axel and tells him that he knows he’s hiding something. Axel plays stupid and rushes off to Agrabah.
Xion is immediately worried about what she’ll do starting tomorrow. She desperately tries to summon her Keyblade, but it refuses to materialize. Roxas decides to lend her his Keyblade which she can fortunately still control. It’s Roxas’s hope that using it for the day will allow her to remember how to summon her own Keyblade. Their mission brings them to Beast’s Castle again where they come across Cogsworth. He’s fretting to himself that because of the constant Heartless attacks on the castle, that the Beast has been unable to talk to Belle for days. Roxas and Xion wonder why all the servants are in such a rush for Belle and the Beast to make up but continue on their mission without dwelling on it.
After defeating a particularly large Heartless, Xion returns Roxas’s Keyblade. She attempts to summon her own and is delighted to see it manifest in her hands. They rush off to Twilight Town to inform Axel. Xion thanks the both of them for all their help, but Axel doesn't want to take any of the credit. They continue to pour praise on him, and he finally says he’ll take a sea-salt ice cream as reward. As they eat together, Roxas and Xion hope that they can make these days last forever. Axel says that probably isn’t possible, but they’ll still have each other even if things change.
The story continues Monday as Roxas learns more about the worlds and the friendship between Roxas, Axel, and Xion strenghtens. Be sure to keep up by reading Parts 1-9 of the Timeline:
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