Kingdom Hearts is a fantasy video game RPG series created by Square Enix and Disney. It combines original elements and characters with ones from various Disney films, including Mulan, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Frozen, just to name a few. Many Final Fantasy characters also appear as cameos, although they largely don't seem to be the actual canon versions.
The setting is a fantastical but bizarre original creation, which infamously grows more intricate and complex with each new title. The first series of titles, collectively referred to as the "Dark Seeker Saga," involves a villain, Xehanort, dead-set on recreating an ancient war out of the misplaced belief that it would wipe out evil in the long run. The protagonist is Sora, a happy-go-lucky teenager with an unusually strong sense of empathy, making him perfect for protecting others and rescuing those who get lost along the way.
The Kingdom Hearts universe is divided into three realms: those of light, darkness, and in-between. The Realm of Light is the largest of the three, and contains all of the Disney-based worlds (aka planets), as well as most of the setting’s original locations. These worlds used to be connected to each other in ancient times, but are now separated by gulfs of space to an ancient war that split everything up. Travel between them can be achieved by piloting spacecraft made of Gummi blocks from one world to another, opening a direct pathway with a keyblade, or creating a corridor of darkness, although the latter is unhealthy for one’s heart when used repeatedly.
The Realm of Darkness is more or less a single conglomerate world, growing larger as more worlds are added to it when their hearts are destroyed. Time moves more slowly here than in the Realm of Light, and a person that spends too much time here will eventually become corrupted by the darkness. The Realm of In-Between contains very few worlds, which tend to get less sunlight than those in the Realm of Light. Their proximity to the Realm of Darkness make them frequent safe havens for people who lose their worlds to darkness, particularly Traverse Town.
There is also a Realm of Sleep, this canon’s resident dream world. Although physical travel between the waking world and the Realm of Sleep is difficult, those who figure out the secret can abuse it to manipulate the time stream and therby time travel.
This article contains one or more spoilers. This is a potentially bad thing. Be careful reading on if you are not well-versed in the continuum or not caught up!
Hearts and Keyblades
Unsurprisingly given the series title, hearts are rather important in this canon. Everyone has a heart, with an inherent balance between light and darkness. Special Princesses of Heart have hearts of pure light, as does the character Ventus, through outside manipulation to remove the dark parts of his heart. If a character allows darkness to corrupt too much of their decision-making, or has their heart stolen by a Heartless, they risk becoming a Heartless themselves. Worlds also have hearts, which the Heartless seek to attack. If a world’s heart is destroyed, it is drawn away to the Realm of Darkness. The titular Kingdom Hearts itself is a collective heart of the universe, something that oversees all worlds, but that can also be corrupted itself, endangering all of reality.
Keyblades are magical, key-shaped swords. They, too, can be light or dark. Keyblades can open or close any lock, including the keyholes that lead to each world’s heart, as well as metaphorical ones, like the hearts of people. Keyblades can only be wielded by chosen few; if someone else picks one up, that keyblade’s chosen can teleport it back to their own hand at will.
Being a video game series, Kingdom Hearts contains numerous different enemies for players to battle. These creatures are related to game lore in various ways.
Heartless: The Heartless are the most common type of enemy in the series, and by and large the focal antagonists. All Heartless are drawn to hearts, particularly hearts of light, and most particularly the hearts of keyblade wielders. They are animalistic and mindless, and can be controlled by any powerful dark heart that exerts willpower over them. Pureblood Heartless are creatures of pure darkness, and seem to appear naturally in the Realm of Darkness. Emblem Heartless are the result of someone being turned into a Heartless, and actually contain that heart trapped within. The heart can be freed and returned to Kingdom Hearts if the Heartless is defeated by a keyblade. Emblem Heartless tend to have characteristics based on their previous self that help them blend in in the world they’re besieging. (For example, many Heartless in Neverland and the Caribbean are dressed as pirates.) They all tend to have fairly simplistic facial features and cartoonish bodies, and are overall surprisingly cute considering their origin. But mileage may vary on that . . .
Nobodies: While a stolen heart goes on to become a Heartless, the body left behind can potentially form a Nobody, though they aren’t as common as Heartless and don’t seem to be a guaranteed part of the process. Without a heart, Nobodies are neither dark nor light; they appear in the Realm of In-Between when forming, and are stated in-game to technically not exist at all . . . although their ability to interact with other solid matter seems to contradict that. They seem to have some form of hierarchy, with more powerful Nobodies controlling weaker ones. If both the Heartless and the Nobody of a person who lost their heart are destroyed (by a keyblade, in the Heartless’s case), then that original person will restored. Nobodies are more spooky and otherworldly than Heartless. Their bodies tend to appear like loose-fitting clothing with little or no visible limbs inside, in washed-out grey colors. They can twist and contort themselves into odd shapes. In rare cases, if the person whose heart was lost had incredibly strong willpower, they retain their original shape as a Nobody. Nobodies can also develop new hearts of their own over time, by forming emotional connections with others.
Unversed: Unversed are tied to a particular villain, Vanitas, who is the dark portions of Ventus’s heart removed from him experimentally, as mentioned earlier. Without any light to balance his nature, Vanitas is filled with constant out-of-control negative emotions, which he can release from his body as separate entities: the Unversed. They obey only Vanitas, and are more angular and streamlined than Heartless, with symbols on their faces mimicking smiles, sad frowns, and angry grimaces. Like Heartless, they seem to disguise themselves to some extent, to blend in on each world. Upon defeat, they return to Vanitas’s body, making him stronger than before from the pain they experienced.
Nightmares: Nightmares are natural inhabitants of the Realm of Sleep, where they cause . . . nightmares. While that’s annoying to those in the waking world, they pose an actual physical threat to any who enter the Realm of Sleep. Fortunately, the realm also contains counterpart Dream Eaters, who fight against Nightmares to allow better sleep. Nearly all Nightmares and Dream Eaters are based on animals, and sport bright, garish colors.
Kingdom Hearts in Badfic
The Kingdom Hearts canon is practically designed to appeal to a teenage demographic, and it definitely delivers in that aspect. The fanon that has arisen around the series is one of the fastest-growing and most intense out there, as well as one of the most inundated by fans of yaoi and slashfic. Agents working in Kingdom Hearts need to have extensive knowledge of the inherent canon along with peripheral knowledge of all the canons attached to it. Due to the games encompassing both a great deal of Disney as well as some portions of Final Fantasy canon, only the most knowledgeable agents usually end up working in Kingdom Hearts missions.
With such a massive cast of characters, shipping abounds, with just about every pairing imaginable probably being out there somewhere. The presence of Disney properties, as well as a lot of characters who are just "nice," attracts dark fics where those nice people get corrupted by various levels of evil. These can be trollfics, but the presence of dark forces in the canon means that these aren't necessarily breaks from canon. With lots of convoluted mysteries about the nature of the universe, and the long periods of time between some of the games, a lot of speculative fics explore aspects that hadn't been fleshed out at the time of writing. Make sure to check the fic's publishing date against those of the games, to make sure you're not charging for something that wasn't contradictory at the time!
The sheer amount of badfic combined with a dearth of experienced agents has led to a sizable amount of canon damage, particularly in regards to the characterization of Organization XIII (or as some slash writers might say, Orgy XIII).
Kingdom Hearts and the PPC
Agent Lunac keeps a supply of false keyblades confiscated from Sues in a chest in his RC, and a team of agents used them in large numbers to remove the influence of the Suvian Robecca from the hearts of Narnia's natives.
Agents Native to Kingdom Hearts
Missions in this Continuum
All reports are listed alphabetically by agent name, in the case of agents with multiple missions, or by mission name.
Agents Specialized in this Continuum
Agents are considered specialized in a continuum when they have handled at least three missions in the canon. Most of these agents are also active/specialized in other continua. It is often not the agents who decide where their specialty lies, but the Flowers that keep assigning missions to them.
- Agents Laura Dukes and Danny Richardson (DMS - Video Games)
Agents Not Yet Specialized in this Continuum
Agents with fewer than three missions in this continuum are not specialized, yet. They probably soon will be.
- Agents Florestan and Eusabius (DIC)
- "Attack of the Trans-Dimensional Idiots," Agents Caitlyn and Kimmie (DF)
- "The Naga Eyes Mission" (NSFW, NSFB), Agents Caroline Asleif (DMS - Freelance) and Tadkeeta (DOGA)