In which Keith is much much younger and was adopted by Shadam some time before Kerberos.
Everyone else is exactly the same, Keith is just 6 years old.
So Shiro happens to do alot of garrison speeches and charity event as the poster boy.
It is during one such charity event where Shiro is bringing publicity to an orphanage to raise donations for Christmas presents for the kids that Shiro meets Keith.
A quiet little kid off to the side avoiding everything and everyone.
Shiro plans to go over and speak to him but is distracted by the event and looks away to help with the fundraiser.
When Shiro remembers the kid he is no where to be seen.
It's later when the event is winding down and everyone is packing up that he sees Keith again.
Getting bullied by some older kids.
Shiro of course comes and intervenes.
The kids scatter, Keith included and Shiro goes to talk to the group home supervisor.
They are dismissive, saying they can only do so much and so on.
After that day Shiro visits regularly and gets to know Keith.
It leads to a discussion with Adam about fostering.
Adam doesn't want kids though, but eventually he gives in and they make the arrangements.
Keith of course is over the moon.
This will be Keith's first foster home, in this particular story he hasn't bounced around in care but stayed in the group home waiting, he is happy to get away from the other kids that are mean to him.
So Keith moves in with Adam and Shiro in their off campus home.
They both have rooms at the garrison, but they also share a home away from the garrison they don't usually stay at due to working at the garrison.
Adam doesn't really warm up to Keith the same way Shiro does, but he isn't mean.
Adam makes sure both Shiro and Keith are taken care of, he is just more openly caring to Shiro.
Shiro on the other hand is completely endeared, he really really wanted to be a father, but with his illness didn't think he ever would.
Shiro and Adam have had disagreements before Keith came to be fostered by them, but have come to the decision not to argue around Keith.
Shiro's illness though is something they can't hide from Keith seeing as he lives with them.
The subject is tip toes around, sometimes Shiro is sick, sometimes Shiro is hurting, sometimes Shiro needs rest.
Keith becomes determined to be of help, refusing to let Shiro do work or leave bed when he is sick.
Adam is smug about this, seeing as he knows Shiro can't refuse Keith.
It's in the next year they decide to move forward with the adoption, Adam having dragged the process out with his disagreement.
Adam doesn't explicitly hate kids, but he does know Shiro isn't gonna live long and wants to spend what little time they have left together.
When that time comes, Adam will be left with Keith, a constant reminder of Shiro.
Adam doesn't know if he can raise Keith when Shiro is gone.
It's after the paperwork is filed that the news comes.
The garrison is looking for pilots for a new mission, a mission to the edge of the solar system that will be a year long round trip.
Shiro is on the list of potential pilots.
Adam finds out not through Shiro, but through the garrison and he isn't pleased.
Nothing is set in stone yet, but if Shiro leaves he might not make it back.
Adam is against it, he feels Shiro is trying to throw his life away.
The ensuing arguement escalates and Keith witnesses the break up.
Keith sees Adam leave and hears the news Shiro is leaving and starts crying.
He doesn't want to go back to the group home, he wants to stay with Shiro and Adam.
But Adam says he isn't coming back.
Eventually Shiro calms Keith down, promising him he will be coming back if he goes to Kerberos, that he wouldn't leave him alone.
Tells him Adam just needs time and it will be okay.
With Adam gone the paperwork stalls, the agency not willing to continue with the news Shiro is leaving the planet and Adam and Shiro aren't in a relationship anymore.
Keith starts hanging around with Shiro when he goes to work.
Shiro had been accepted as the pilot for Kerberos, so he has permission work and team building.
Keith gets to know Sam and Matt Holt, as well as Katie Holt who comes to the premission tests and training as well.
Neither Keith or Katie are allowed to be around the equipment or close to the training fields (as much as pidge tries) but they find ways to stay entertained.
Katie was apprehensive about hanging out with a little kid, but she warmed up to the idea when he showed interest in mechanics and flight.
Keith was still to young to completely understand it, but he went along with Katie in the hopes he could fly like Shiro one day.
An agreement was made at some point, Colleen became Keith's secondary gaurdian while Shiro went on his mission.
Whenever Keith couldn't go to the garrison with Shiro, he stayed at the Holt's home.
When the time came Keith begrudgingly packed him things to go-to the Holts.
Keith, Katie and Colleen all went to the launch to watch the crew leave for Kerberos.
In their goodbyes Shiro mad certain to remind Keith he was coming back in a year and that patience yields focus.
Keith was sad to see Adam didn't show, although Adam hadn't warmed up to him, he still saw Adam as part of the little family that was growing together.
Keith was downcast as he went back to the Holts.
It's six months later that the Kerberos crew is announced dead, the mission lost due to pilot error.
Keith doesn't believe the news, he doesn't listen to anyone who tries to tell him.
Not the news, not the kids at school, not the teachers, no one.
With the news of Shiro's death and Adam still not returning to claim Keith, the agency comes to the decision to take custody of Keith.
This leads to Colleen fighting for Keith's custody.
Colleen eventually succeedful in becoming Keith's new foster mother.
Keith is less excited about being Colleen's foster then he was being Adam's and Shiro's.
Katie meanwhile has gotten herself banned from garrison property permanently.
Keith watches her storm to there room and lock herself inside.
It's a week later when she finally leaves her room with a new hair cut and Matt's glasses on her face.
She announces she will be called Pidge Gunderson and enrolling in the garrison.
It's soon after Pidge, Keith is having trouble remebering the name change, packs up and leaves for the garrison.
At this point Keith is beginning to resent the place, he feels he is getting left behind.
Its exactly a years after the news of Kerberos' loss that new news comes, this time over the phone, Pidge was lost during a drill.
She isn't coming back either.
It's after that that Keith begins to lose all hope that anything will get better, Shiro's isn't coming home, Pidge isn't coming home, Adam isn't coming home, nor Matt, nor Sam.
He can see the hope fading from Colleen's eyes as well as the garrison refuses time and time again to give her any information on anyone.
It's the day Keith turns thirteen when ships begin entering the atmosphere.
Keith and Colleen have been staying at the garrison since Sam miraculously returned and informed everyone that Shiro and the missing cadets all live.
But from where Keith stands as he watches earth slowly lose what little rebellion they had struck up against these aliens, he can't say he is feeling anything close to hope.
Behind the barrier where the garrison still stands is one of the only Haven's left on earth.
It is in this building he finally saw Adam again, the Adam who abandoned him and Shiro, who refuses to acknowledge either of them even existed.
It hurt, but Keith had long decided to stop putting faith in others.
There was little he could do to help, running supplies around base was the most he was allowed, in his free time he snuck into the simulators.
Technically he wasn't allowed to, but he did regardless.
If he could not rely on others, he would rely on himself.
Keith felt Shiro would rather be in space then come home, he didn't understand anything about Voltron or the war or why they had to stay away.
He understood less so with the galra at their doorstep and Voltron missing in action.
Keith had no idea what to do, and even less of what was going on.
No one tells children anything.
So when Voltron comes to earth he is the last to know.
It's when Keith is bringing a hover cart of supplies to the hanger that he realizes something was happening.
By then everyone had moved to discuss elsewhere.
But the giant color coded Lion ships weren't hard to miss.
He was quickly shooed from the hanger much to his protest to find out what is going on.
Keith books it to the war room instead and is denied entry there as well.
Inside Shiro is completely clueless that Keith is in the garrison.
So when the meeting ends and someone opens one of the doors and a scrawny teenager busts in, everyone is surprised.
Keith is yolked up by the gaurds the moment Shiro recognizes him and calls out, Keith...?
Shiro falls to his knees as Keith breaks out of the gaurds hold and barrels into him and starts bawling.
As some of the higher ups begin to protest the paladins get in their way.
Shiro told them all stories about Keith, his soon to be adopted son he was extremely worried about.
Shiro had feared Keith would get lost in the system while he was gone and he'd never see him again.
So the paladins are gonna of course defend the reunion with their lives.
Both Shiro and Keith are openly crying their eyes out, it has been years, so many long years.
Keith cries, you said you would come home in a year!
Shiro responded, I'm sorry I'm so sorry, I know I know.
And after that Keith refuses to let Shiro leave his side.
Unfortunately Shiro has to lead Voltron to save earth one last time, as Keith watches from the ground with apprehension.
The battle is won though not without injuries and casualties.
Keith doesn't learn until after shiro recovers that Adam did not survive.
Keith and Shiro both stand before the memorial wall, and stare at Adams name with grief.
Each feeling their own regrets of what they could have said or done before his loss.
It would take time.
Time to accept Adam's death.
Time to accept Shiro is very different from when he left earth, his scars and prosthetic speak volumes of traumas.
Time for Shiro to realize how much of Keith's life he missed and how much Keith has grown.
Time to rebuild earth, Time to end the war, Time to heal the wounds the war left behind.
As Keith watches the paladins take flight into space to stop the destruction of the multiverse, he can only hope they are granted time.