Episode 14: Jiangmon Makes Three

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At first she had felt a sense of relief at finding more people in the foreign land. Very foreign land where she had been attacked, tricked, bruised, cut, chased and left dazed and confused more than she dared to count but now... Hannah wasn’t so sure.

It wasn’t that the group she had stumbled upon weren’t welcoming. They were welcoming, friendly, open. They made her feel less lost, and it was nice knowing others were experiencing the same thing she was; that she had been transported to the Digital World suddenly, and others had gone through the same thing. But this group were just that. A group. They had a dynamic; they had obviously been together for some time. When they bickered it was always good natured, and things were easily resolved. And while they included her in conversations and activities; she still felt as though she was an outsider looking in on them.

An intruder.

Auramon had said she was over thinking, imagining things. That she should just enjoy being surrounded by others and not being chased down by Digimon every five minutes and Hannah was inclined to agree, it was part of her personality to over think things. But she felt as if she had been dropped into the middle of something and was being expected to deal with it.

It was early morning, and only she was up. Except Ryudamon, who she could see on the outside of the house practicing some kind of martial art she didn’t recognize. Hannah was sitting on the landing that ran outside of the house, shuffling her tarot card pack. This was her morning ritual, to shuffle them, pick one and read it as a sign of how her day would go. She had not demonstrated this hobby to her new companions yet, nor did she think she would. She found that very few really understood it, and she had been made fun of for it before.

Placing the pack face down on the wood, she picked up about half the deck and took the top card from the remaining cards on the wood. She looked at the card. The card showed a tall, stone built tower on a rocky out crop. The sky was lined with a bolt of lightning and there were two figures falling from the tower itself into a rough sea that decorated the bottom of the card. Hannah took a sharp intake of breath and quickly replaced the card into the pack and pocketed them.

The Tower card was one that most tarot readers feared and Hannah was no different. It would have been nice to have had a less ominous and foreboding card... but the card had been drawn so now she had to make it through the day. Getting to her feet, Hannah wrung her hands together and quickly ran them over her hair. Maybe she was over thinking the card she had picked. Yes, primarily it was seen as a bad card with edifices and walls breaking down or weakening, but on the flipside it also meant things being built up and strengthened. Who was to say that her drawing the card didn’t hold the good meaning?


Hannah sighed and descended down the stairs. Auramon was in the main room, it appeared while she had been out on the landing many of the others had woken up. Piper was in the kitchen with Eva, getting things together for breakfast for everyone. While Tom, Reyez and Frankie were all in the main room with the Digimon, starting on the morning chores they did before eating – which consisted of sweeping and cleaning the outside landing where Hannah had been sitting before.

“Morning,” Hannah greeted, she picked up a broom from the corner where Ryudamon left them.

“Good morning!” Frankie replied, chipper as always. “You were up early.” Hannah had started sharing a room with Frankie and Piper when she had first arrived, almost two weeks ago. Hannah had only been in the Digital World a few weeks. After talking to the group, it turned out they had been there for almost six weeks. Now it was coming up to two months.

“Oh...” Hannah struggled a little, “I hope I didn’t wake you guys.”

“Not me.” Frankie smiled, “And it’s impossible to wake Piper unless you leap on her.”

“Or buzz in her ear!” Caesarmon added from the kitchen. He was promptly given a sharp nudge with Piper’s foot. “Ow!”

Hannah smiled, “Well, that’s good.” She started sweeping. Well accustomed to chores and doing housework at home she had never complained when Ryudamon asked her to join in with the others. Though she had also never asked why everyone did the chores together and why the Digimon were taken into a separate room two or three times a day for an hour at a time. She had reasoned it was none of her business and therefore had never pried.

“So what’s on the agenda today?” Hannah asked. Eva and Piper were starting to move to-and-fro from the main room to the kitchen carrying plates, bowls and steaming mugs. They had become quite apt at feeding the large group using what they could, considering there were no breakfast cereals, no fry ups and no ready-made pancakes around.

“Same as ever.” Tom commented. He was helping Hannah now sweep the main room; Reyez and Frankie had moved upstairs to do the work where James also was. “Chores, the Digimon do their meditation thing and more training.” He shrugged.

Hannah hesitated for a moment. Auramon caught her eye and nodded encouragingly. Hannah shrugged to herself, “What are you training for?” she asked.

Tom lifted his eyes from the floor and leaned on the broom, “I guess we didn’t ever mention, huh?”

“No.” Hannah shook her head, “Then again, I never asked!”

Tom laughed, “Uhm, Ryudamon transported us all here when we were about to be obliterated by some other Digimon in the real world. It’s for safety, but he’s also helping us and the Digimon work more as a group.”

“I see...” Hannah murmured. She actually didn’t, but didn’t want to ask further questions. Not when food was being laid on the table and her stomach was growling, reminding her just how hungry she was. Auramon too, though Auramon for now was trying to help Poemon sweep up dust and dirt into piles. Poemon with her wings and Auramon with her long veil. Neither was having much luck, but they were having fun regardless.

The main room was swept quickly and left as clean as could be expected, considering the doors were left open for the entire day until nightfall it was normally covered with leaves again within a few hours, but at least they tried. Upstairs was the same, and once Frankie and Reyez came downstairs and the brooms were put away there was very little left to do until the rest of the food prepared by Eva and Piper was laid out for eating.

As soon as it was, it was something of a frenzy, Digimon first.

“That was mine!”

“Well – its mine now!”

“Give me that!”

“No! I got it first- don’t lick it!”

“Why are you giving it to me?!”

“I don’t want his germs!”

“What are you doing?! That’s my tail! Don’t wipe your mouth on my tail!”

Ryudamon stood back with the humans watching the group of Digimon squabble and fight over the food laid out. Irbimon and Caesarmon’s voices were loudest over the others, and Ailurmon only when something was stolen from her.

“Every morning...” Piper sighed, rubbing her hair with one hand while holding a mug of tea in the other. “This is why we make extras for us.”

“It’s like watching vultures pick a corpse.” Reyez commented.


“Yet strangely, you can’t look away.” Tom added, his head was tilted. Even Poemon got in on the fights when there was food concerned. She and Auramon made quite a team at protecting their food once they had got it.

“No Odocomon, or James this morning?” Ryudamon asked, noticing the lack of the only rookie who didn’t partake in the feeding craziness. Reyez shook his head.

“Said he wasn’t feelin’ right, so left him to it.”

Ryudamon nodded slowly, “I see. I’ll check on him a little later then.” He paused, the squabbling had stopped and for now, most of the Digimon were quietly eating what they had grabbed from the table or stolen from the others. Again, Piper, Eva and this time Tom disappeared into the kitchen and appeared with plates of more food. They handed them out to the humans and Ryudamon and sat down around the large table. They, at least, could eat in a civilized fashion.

-----------------------------

The problem with doors that slid was that they did not work as a sound barrier, so James could hear every word being said in the main room while he sat outside on the stair, his hands clasped together, knuckles turning white and his head almost between his knees.

He had come downstairs worked up, and frustrated, he had worked himself up enough to demand that Ryudamon let them go home. That he was sick of being here, that he wanted to be home to be with his family and keep things normal and in line like he was used to. As far as he could see there was no more training to be done on the Digimon.

They worked much better now together, as a group they were closer and in any fights – of which there had been many – where they had to work together, they had proven themselves beyond any measure. They were better; they had vastly improved on when they had first come here. Surely this was enough. That they were good enough to go home now. Get back to normality.

“How am I the only one not okay with still being here?” James growled to himself. Odocomon had been silent beside him, standing with her head perched on James’ leg. She had been the only one in the know regarding his anxiety and his worries about going home. She knew he had more to lose and more to worry about than the others. And it was also more of James’ personality to worry. He had been keeping his concerns inside, bottled up and away for some time now, nearly since they had first arrived.

It had been fine for the first few weeks. But once Hannah had worked out they had been here for nearly two months that’s when James really realized just how long it had been.

“You should say something.” Odocomon told him, “Ryudamon is reasonable – he will understand.”

“It’s not just Ryudamon.” James muttered. “But I can’t just stay here. He said time moves differently here. What if it’s been a year back home?”

“It hasn‘t.”

“You don’t know that!” James countered harshly. Odocomon stared at him and blinked slowly. She knew James was only irritated at the situation and not actually with her. She never really took any of his snaps or lash outs personally. He moved his hands up and they held the back of his head, which was still dangling almost between his knees. “My dad could be dead... I could have no job...”

“Say something.” Odocomon urged, “Listen, if you’re worried then the likelihood is that everyone else is worried about it too. They just haven’t or won’t say anything.”

“Why should it be down to me?!” James growled, getting to his feet.

Odocomon followed after him. “Because you’re the one with the most to lose.” Turning on the spot James stared down at his partner. She was right and he knew it. He also knew that she was just saying what he knew was true deep down, but did not want to say for fear of causing issues with the others.
He inhaled.

Through the door he could hear laughing, Piper, Frankie and it sounded like Hannah, who James hadn’t really bothered to get to know. He felt rude for it, but he had bigger things on his mind and making another friend didn’t happen to be one of them. In a way he felt like her arrival had meant he and the others had stayed longer than necessary. That now because she was here, they had to help her get home before they could all go. And that Ryudamon was just now using them as a personal house cleaning service.

More laughter. James’ hands clenched into fists at his sides. Just the sounds of them enjoying themselves made him un-necessarily angry. How could they be laughing and enjoying themselves?! They had lives didn’t they, lives that were disrupted completely and utterly by being here? And they were still somehow finding the time to enjoy themselves. To... make it work somehow.

“I just can’t do that.” James said to himself. He was resolved. He quickly cleared his throat and pushed the door open walking through. Immediately all the eyes in the room turned to him.

“Hey, you’re up!” Frankie greeted him. “Rey said you weren’t feeling too good, you feel better?” James nodded stoically.

Frankie frowned a little. “Are you... sure?”

“I somehow don’t think he is.” Ryudamon murmured, leaving the table and facing James straight on. “You’re vexed?”

James’s brain blanked. He had so much he wanted say before he walked in, all ready, waiting in his head. Stuff that was just waiting to be shouted or said – loudly. But now, with all the eyes in the room staring at him and Ryudamon actually asking him to say something, James’ mind went blank as a sheet of paper. He couldn’t think for the life of him what he wanted to say, or how to make it coherent.

“James?” behind him Odocomon prompted.

“I...” James struggled. He opened and closed his mouth a few times, he was completely ridged.

“Some time this century.” Reyez crowed.

“Cat got your tongue?” Irbimon added, holding his tongue with two claws for effect. Several around the table laughed out loud at the visual joke and James snapped.


“How can you guys be laughing, at a time like this?!” Eyes turned towards him, and ordinarily James would have said ‘forget it’ and walked away. Not right now though, he couldn’t stand to. “We’re still here, in case you didn’t notice! In this goddamn jungle! I don’t know about you guys but I am sick of it here and I want to go home!”

“Ryuda-“

“I know what Ryudamon said!” James cut Piper off quickly, “But I’m pretty sure all the training is done. And now we’re just his personal house maids! I don’t want to go home because I hate the weather, or because I hate the thin mattress or because I hate sharing a room with Reyez and his fucking snoring. I want to go home because I have a life!”

“…I snore?” Rey said quietly. Frankie and Ailurmon nodded, the only two to acknowledge his petty question.

“We all have lives back home, James.” Eva said softly, trying not to make matters worse.

“Yet none of you seem eager to get back!”

“Are you forgetting the two psychos who tried to kill us?” Tom asked sarcastically. “You might be willing to hand yourself to them on a gold platter, but I sure as hell am not.”

“I haven’t forgotten! But I have more to deal with at home that just that! For all I know my dad could have killed himself by now. The only reason he was taking his meds is because I was making him take them! My sister and my brothers could have been taken away. My house could be knocked down. My family could be out on the streets. Without me, there’s no money coming in! And without money my family can’t damn well live!”

Reyez shrugged, “What do you want? An award? Your home life sucks, boohoo. Join the club.”

James quickly ran his hand through his hair, “Sorry, Rey, if my life crisis doesn’t ring as high on your list of importance as getting high and getting laid, but it’s a pretty big deal to me. I doubt you’ve got anything pressing to get back to, seeing as you only give a crap about yourself.” Reyez and Ailurmon both looked as if they were going to interject, but James was on a roll and didn’t give them a chance, “Some of us actually have people depending on us and need to get home. But I figure I’m wasting my breath. We’re not going to leave any time soon, until we figure out a way to get the new girl home. And then what, we’ll stick around here until Ryudamon deems us ready? Who the fuck died and made him King?”

James was quick to turn and stalk out of the room, out of the house, leaving the others in a speechless stupor. Hannah thought back to the tarot card she had drawn that morning and how James’ outburst then easily signified the collapse of a tower. He had been the most stoic and quietest since her arrival, and now it seemed everyone knew why.

“I’ll...” Frankie got to her feet and Siberimon followed her out.

“That was unexpected.” Eva murmured. “I’m sure he didn’t mean those things...”

“Oh, he did.” Ryudamon replied. “I am worried about him... very worried.”

“Do you blame him?” Odocomon asked, walking a few more feet into the room. “He’s been taken away and kept from his family. The one thing that keeps him sane. He misses them, and has been sick with worry for them more times than I would dare disclose. He has wanted to talk to you about returning home for weeks... he has seen no more need for the training, and frankly neither have I.” She too now walked out of the room, and left the house following James.

-----------------------------

“Will you just stop, James? Talk to me, please!” Frankie shouted, grabbing James’ arm. He had stormed outside and made a bee line for the forest surrounding the house and the clearing it sat in. Siberimon stayed at her side, and James had ignored her while he had charged through the undergrowth, trying to calm the rage that was still wrestling inside him. James yanked his arm out of Frankie’s grip, but stopped and turned regardless. She was panting. “What was that about?”

“I thought it was pretty clear.” James replied, shrugging. “I know you and the others are having the time of your lives, but I have responsibilities.”

Frankie scoffed, “And... what you think we don’t?”

“Guess not ones that any of you give a crap about.”

“Oh please. Me? I have classes I have missed. Not such a big deal. Eva has a job. Piper has missed finals cause she’s been here. She’s been in tears so many times because she scared when she gets back she’s not going to have a course to go back to. But y’know what – we are all trying to make the best of it!”

James huffed, “Well I’m sorry I can’t be as resilient as the rest of you.”

“It’s not about being resilient. The only reason we’re managing is because we’ve been helping each other. You going berserk on us all like that, not great. I know you’re stressed and that you’ve got stuff at home you want to get back to, but you’re in the same boat as the rest of us.”

“You just...” James rubbed an eyebrow, “You just don’t get it.” James snapped.

“Get what?” Eva’s voice came through the trees, and several bushes disappeared under one of Skadimon’s massive paws. “What don’t we get, James, come on. We’re all friends, trying to make the best of a bad situation.”

“Getting super worked up about it, exploding like you did, that’s not going to help anyone. Least of all, you.” Piper added, she had come up behind on Vespasmon, she, Hannah and Auramon all slipped off his back onto the ground. Reyez was there too with Bambusmon, and Tom on the back of Skadimon with Eva while Valramon was hovering above where they had stopped.

“If you’d just swallowed your pride and talked to us, we would have understood.” Frankie explained.

“What’s the good in understanding?” Odocomon asked coming to James’ side. “Understanding is one thing, but it’s not like it would have changed anything. I’m sure your sympathy is wonderful, but it’s not what he wants.”


“I doubt your comments help much.” Siberimon muttered, folding his arms and giving Odocomon a superior gaze. She rolled her eyes.

“I’ve been there listening to him, caring about him. Not running off and spending illicit nights in caves with those who are supposed to be ex-partners.” Odocomon replied waspishly.

“Oh, here we go.” Frankie huffed, throwing her arms up in dismay. “I was wondering when this was going to come up.”

“Out with it then.” Bambusmon challenged the small Digimon.

“Oh, gladly. The only reason I have not said anything yet was because James asked me not to.”

Reyez took a long drag in on smoke. “Well doesn’t look like he’s going to hold you back now. Let rip, Bambi.”

Odocomon rolled her eyes again; she was familiar with the cartoon deer due to Marie. She did not appreciate the nickname or the similarity.

“It is rather... convenient, is it not? You two argue, bicker, challenge one another consistently. And one day things get so heated that you leave the safety of the house. Together. You wind up away from the house for an entire night. You spend that night, together. Apparently you’re working out your differences – but no one could blame you if those past passions come up somehow. After all... you’ve both proven you can’t really be trusted and are guilty of infidelity in one way or another.”

Siberimon snarled.

“Too wordy.” Reyez sneered, “Just say what you mean.”

“Fine.” Odocomon retorted, “I don’t believe for one minute that nothing happened as you both claim. I do not think Frankie is good enough for James, nor will I ever think that. And Reyez, I still wonder why you spend any time with us as you obviously have no fondness for any of us, except Frankie. And one can only wonder how deep your fondness for her goes.”

“Guys-“

“What the hell?!” Reyez was laughing. “You’re totally off the mark.”

“Truly?” Odocomon responded briskly, “Funny how you’re the only one making denials.”

Frankie sighed, “Nothing happened. Nothing! James believes me, why can’t you?”

“He believes you because he does not have the strength or patience to question you and your fluttering eyelashes!”

“Guys-“

“Argh! You’re impossible.” Frankie snapped, “He doesn’t question me because he trusts me! Surely that’s enough for you too!”

“GUYS!”

“WHAT?!” Frankie, Reyez, Odocomon and Siberimon all turned to see Tom, Eva, Piper, James, Bambusmon, Hannah, Vespasmon and Auramon about ten feet away from them and backing away slowly. The quartet turned their faces upward to see what it was that was scaring their companions.

Somehow, without their notice and between their squabbling through the forest a trio of Digimon had made their way and now stood directly over Frankie, Odocomon, Reyez and Siberimon growling and snarling. At the head of the group was a large tyrannosaur looking Digimon, though some parts of his grey skin were covered with metal. Both feet, its lower jaw and instead of hands, it had giant metal claws, with wires running around and over its entire body. Flanking it were two more tyrannosaur like Digimon, both black in color with red stripes decorating their skin. Like the leader, their claws were huge, but not metal.

Piper’s D-Touch bleeped, bringing into view holograms of both the dinosaur Digimon. “DarkTyrannomon... and MetalTyrannomon.” She murmured shaking against Vespasmon’s bulk. “MetalTyrannomon’s armor is so strong it can deflect almost any ground based attack. DarkTyrannomon is a Digimon of pure evil. Its tail and claws are strong enough to snap trees.”

“Uh...uh... what do you guys think we should do?” Hannah asked, clutching Auramon to her chest.

“Run.” Vespasmon grunted. “Run. We’ll keep them busy. You all need to run.”

“R-Right…” Hannah nodded.

“Well, shit” Reyez blinked. He began patting his pockets. “I left my smokes back at the--”

“NOT NOW!” Frankie shouted, pulling Reyez out of the way from MetalTyrannomon’s massive claw.

Bambusmon leaped forward, followed by Vespasmon and Skadimon rushing towards the trio of massive Digimon.

“Frozen Grip!” Skadimon slashed his claws at the metal leader, who quickly blocked and repelled with a single swing. Skadimon leaped back, ducking down.

“Pain Geyser!” Vespasmon’s attack shot instantly.


MetalTyrannomon growled, stepping back from the hot water pressure.

“Where are you going big boy?” Bambusmon said from behind him, she jumped into the air, “Great Cannon!”

“Fire Blast!”

Bambusmon yelped as she was hit by one of the DarkTyrannomon’s attack; sending her crashing into a nearby tree.

Siberimon and Odocomon charged towards the battle, engulfed in light and bursting into their champion forms.

Skadimon launched towards MetalTyrannomon, “Hungering Cold!” He bit down on his arm.

MetalTyrannomon swung his arm wildly as it was being overtaken by ice. Skadimon, however, did not release his grip.

Vespasmon charged, throwing his bulk against MetalTyrannomon in an attempt to knock him down.

“Nuclear Laser!” MetalTyrannomon shouted, releasing an energy beam from his left, free, arm.

Vespasmon growled as he was thrown by the attack a few feet away, knocking over a group of trees in the process.

Hurakamon leaped over him, “If we take out the DarkTyrannomon first, then we can all concentrate on the leader”

Rusdramon nodded, “Agreed.”

Vespasmon slowly stood back up to his feet, “Me and Skadimon will continue to keep him distracted then, the rest of you take out the lackeys.”

With a single nod, Rusdramon and Hurakamon made their way past MetalTyrannomon and towards the other two ultimate levels.

“Duskbane!” Valramon shouted from above, dodging the long claw swipes of one of the DarkTyrannomon. The small murder of shadow birds overtook the Digimon’s sight, causing it to swing frantically in place.

“Wind Wrecker!” Hurakamon spun into a horizontal tornado, throwing himself against the occupied Digimon.

“Night strike!” Valramon attacked before the massive Digimon could hit the ground.

“Fire--”

“Wind Wrecker!” Hurakamon had now split himself into five wind clones. The clones attacked before DarkTyrannomon could get himself together to complete the attack, at the same time Valramon’s Night Strike hit. The impact alone caused the Digimon to burst into data.

Hurakamon and Valramon wasted no time making their way to help the others.

-----------------------------

“Iron Tail!”

Rusdramon leaped back, barely dodging the attack. “Grand Cross!” She countered.

DarkTyrannomon slashed through the attack, running over and grabbing her by her long neck.

“Unhand me!” She shouted, using all four of her legs and kick the prehistoric Digimon in the muzzle.

Bambusmon leaped onto his claw, throwing her right leg around for a tornado kick to the face. DarkTyrannomon staggered to the side trying to regain his composure. Rusdramon charged, hitting his stomach head on with her antlers. A bright light formed between them.

“Grand Cross!”

“Great Cannon!” Bambusmon leaped into the air.

Both attacks hit dead on; Rusdramon leaped back, landing on all four hooves gracefully.  

DarkTyrannomon hit the ground, disintegrating into data. Before the two champions could relish in their victory, a scream caught their attention.

Hurakamon, Skadimon and Vespasmon struggled to get to their feet, growling to the point of baring fangs. Valramon kept a safe distance in the air but her attacks weren’t doing anything to stop the raging MetalTyrannomon stomping towards the group.

“Auramon wait-…!” Hannah shouted out, but Auramon jumped in front of the group. Eva placed a hand on Hannah’s shoulder as a sign of reassurance.

“Incoming!” Tom shouted.

“Giga Destroyer!” MetalTyrannomon launched a missile from his right arm. The group scattered quickly but was caught by the blast, sending them flying in different directions across the battlefield. Bambusmon and Rusdramon launched attacks from behind, but seemed to deal no damage to the metal tyrant. He was entirely on guard. 

“Oracle Aura!” Auramon brought her wingtips together in a prayer position, her eyes began glowing. A force field surrounded MetalTyrannomon and the force pulled him into the air. Surprisingly strong for a rookie.

“Impressive.” Ryudamon stood in a tree not too far.

MetalTyrannomon flailed his legs into the air, trying to break the force field. 

“Duskbane!” Valramon attacked.

“Nuclear Laser!” The attacks hit dead on, with MetalTyrannomon’s beam dominating the raven cloud. Valramon shrieked as she was hit with the attack, knocking her from the sky.

MetalTyrannomon dropped back to the ground, landing on his feet. The stomp created a fissure and minor earthquake causing everyone to lose their footing. Bambusmon and Rusdramon leaped in to attack.

Auramon landed on the ground, she narrowed her eyes and launched towards the tyrant.

“AURAMON! You can’t possibly beat him!” Hannah ran behind her.

“Can somebody at least try to grab the crazy chick from running TOWARDS the enemy!” Reyez shouted, but Hannah was too far away from them and running towards Auramon.

Auramon turned to Hannah, “You have to believe! That’s what we’ve been training for!”

Hannah sighed, “I know, I know but…”

“No buts, Hannah! If you don’t believe in me then I can’t believe in myself and we won’t win!”

Hannah took in the words carefully. She had never really been in this type of predicament before and the cards earlier were really starting to get to her, losing Auramon would be devastating at this point. She shook her head and smiled, “Okay… Show’em how it’s done!”

Auramon nodded, a purple light enveloped her.

MetalTyrannomon swung Rusdramon and Bambusmon into the air, aiming his right arm towards the bird and her partner. “Nuclear Laser!”

Auramon turned quickly, “Get back!” The light that surrounded her engulfed her form, repelling the laser attack back at MetalTyrannomon, who barely dodged. The light was warm to the other Digimon, giving them a sudden boost of energy and strength.

“Auramon Digivolve to…”

Her form took a dramatic change, growing close to eight feet tall. Everything became larger, more noticeably her long wings that now developed claws underneath. Her eyes changed to black and yellow and a paper talisman formed on her forehead. Her vibrant body colors de-saturated into paler tones, while her tail feathers became darker. Pounding her fist into the ground, and swinging her legs into the air, the champion Digimon broke feet of the light that engulfed her.

“Jiangmon!” She shouted proudly.

Jiangmon left no time for her form to be admired. She propelled herself into the air, over MetalTyrannomon.


“Cyclone Claw!” Her claws extended into a flurry of punches, followed by strong gusts of wind.

“Pain Geyser!” Vespasmon attacked from behind. MetalTyrannomon stumbled forward, almost losing his footing. 

“Amethyst Chains!”

“Foliage Domination!”

The tyrant soon found himself tied up by two sets of strong bindings, both pulling from two different directions. The chains made of light had a tight grip on his neck, wrists and torso while the strong vines took over his upper arms, wrists as well and bottom half. 

The two female champions pulled harder until MetalTyrannomon was roaring, being stretched in half.

Skadimon and Hurakamon smirked at each other, one stood in front of the ultimate while the other stood behind. The two narrowed their eyes at each other as if they were timing each others’ action. 

In a single charge and at incredible speed, Hurakamon and Skadimon attacked MetalTyrannomon simultaneously. Their speed made it hard for them to see but the results were showing as MetalTyrannomon’s armor was losing sheen and falling apart.

“Hungering Cold!”

“Gale Meditation!”

“Cursed Talisman!”

The attacks exploded on impact. MetalTyrannomon shook, defeated. He tried to pull himself free from his bindings once again, attempting to charge his next attack which was a horrible struggle.

Valramon flew higher, circling around the area like a buzzard or some kind of deadly hawk. “Night Strike!” She shouted, shooting down to the ground at a top speed. Her figure was blurred by the wind but the impact was noticeable.

MetalTyrannomon’s blood curdling roar was high pitched, causing the onlookers to cover their ears. Valramon shot from MetalTyrannomon’s back, spinning into the air before stopping and spreading her wings. The data of the ultimate level dispersed, spreading throughout the battlefield.

-----------------------------

The battle over, the forest smoldered in places where flames had been put out by Vespasmon. Where the fight had taken place almost all of the trees and bushes had been flattened.

Rusdramon kneeled on the floor and James slid off her back. He had disappeared with her quickly after the fight as everyone else recovered. He felt like a jackass. He had put everyone in danger and needed to apologize. He had also asked Rusdramon to apologize to Frankie and Reyez for the things she had said as Odocomon. Though head strong, she had agreed to his bequest.

Even from the stairs that ran up to the landing and led inside James could hear noise and talking from his friends and their Digimon. Everyone seemed to be in good spirits... despite everything. He had to admit, they were a hardy and tough group. It seemed no matter what was thrown at them they somehow managed to come through it and make the best of things.

“You ready to apologize?” he asked rubbing Rusdramon’s nose.

Rusdramon snorted indignantly, “I still don’t see why-“

“We’ve been through this.” James said softly, “Please.”

“I know.” Rusdramon sighed, “Very well.”

Rusdramon huffed quietly and pawed the ground. She glowed a lilac purple and shrunk down to Odocomon’s size. She stepped up on the step in front of James. “Come on then.” James followed her up the stairs. Odocomon strode purposefully into the main room into the noise that faltered a little on her entrance. James breathed in deeply and decided to brace himself for any comments he knew he admitted he probably deserved. After steeling himself he walked in the door and closed it behind him.

He turned to face his friends, suddenly feeling as though he was in front of a jury on trial for something. Odocomon stood at his side.

“So uh...”

“You going to explode at us again?” Tom asked, “Just so we can brace ourselves.”

“No.” James shook his head, “Actually I thought you’d all... yell at me.” He commented, “I wouldn’t blame you. I’d deserve it.”

“I’ll jump in if no one else wants to!” Ailurmon yelped from where she sat. Irbimon kicked her promptly and then ran away before she could retaliate.

“I think everyone has to apologize.” Piper said slowly, “You for... exploding and not telling us how worried you were – we’re not mind readers, James.”

“And us,” Eva added, “For not checking how you were. Despite knowing the situation with your family.”

James stood as if he had been petrified for a few moments, not quite sure how to react or respond to what his friends were saying. He was... touched... in a way. That they were apologizing to him even though he had lost his temper with them. It was his fault they had attracted the trio of Tyrannomon, because he had walked straight out into the forest.

“Thanks... you guys.” James muttered finally, he rubbed his hand through his hair feeling awkward. “I uh... Odocomon?” He eyed his Digimon who had remained silent. She cast him a sidelong look and stepped forward, clearing her throat.

“I apologize too. I said some... cruel things that were unnecessary and unfounded. I apologize to those concerned.”

“Odocomon...” James warned.

Odocomon grimaced before correcting herself, “I apologize to Frankie and Reyez for the things I said.”

“Apology accepted.” Frankie smiled. Siberimon’s face was disgruntled and he was obviously in a mood, thinking Odocomon had been let off much too easily – but he said nothing to make this known. Knowing it would only make things worse.


Reyez simply shrugged and nodded his head slightly, which Odocomon assumed meant he accepted her apology too. She was glad, for now she wanted to turn and go upstairs with the remainder of her pride intact.

“I’m glad to see you’re all friends again.” Ryudamon said from behind James, coming from the small room away from the main area, where everyone assumed Ryudamon slept. He had never mentioned where his own private quarters were. “I have something to announce.”

James sat down beside Frankie; and Odocomon beside him while Ryudamon addressed the group as a whole. “Following your display earlier today... I think it is about time you all went home. Seeing you all work together... I feel there is nothing else for me to teach you that would be useful at this time. You worked together to defeat three very formidable foes. You joined forces to save Hannah and allow Auramon to evolve.” Hannah gave her Digimon an approving pat on the head. “So, tomorrow morning I will be sending you all home.”

“How much time will have passed?” Tom asked.

“Hard to say.” Ryudamon replied, “I have been trying to work it out. Before you arrived here it was estimated one thousand Digital World years were equal to twenty human world years. But when Tsukuyomon and Terasumon attacked you the tear in the connection was so vast it corrupted the time delay. So now the time change is much less.”

“How much less?” pried Tom, curious and also concerned. He, and the others, were all hoping that when they went back their families wouldn’t have aged thirty years.

“I imagine it’s about one month here to a week there... I would guess that.” Ryudamon nodded slowly. “Yes; that is what I have calculated.”

“That’s not too bad then.” Piper breathed, “I’ll be able to sign up for retakes!”

“You’re so boring.” Caesarmon yawned from her lap.

-----------------------------

The following morning there was a quiet hum of excitement. Though everything started as it had done since their arrival, everyone was more cheerful than they had been. Even the Digimon were unable to deny the ripple of excitement that was infecting everyone at the prospect of returning home.

The prior evening, before everyone had retired for bed, had been spent with everyone talking about how they were looking forward to having their own beds to sleep in. That Frankie was going to have a day of shopping to get her fix. Eva was slightly worried about any food that might have gone sour while they were away, but for the most part all comments were positive and everyone went to bed late.

Breakfast was made and eaten quickly, and Ryudamon had given Piper some more scrolls for study as she had become quite engrossed in the history the Digital World had written down. After eating and their typical morning chores, Ryudamon assembled everyone outside.

“I’ll transport Hannah back first, as she has come from a different place as the rest of you.”

“Aw... it’s been nice having you around!” Eva commented, giving the other girl a quick hug. “Nice to know there are more people about with Digimon.”

“Don’t be a stranger, okay honey?” Frankie told her, “And if you’re ever in town, give us a call!”

“I’ll do that.” Hannah nodded, smiling. She gave her goodbyes to the others, hugging Piper and the Digimon, while Auramon did the same.

On the ground outside Ryudamon had drawn out a large glyph with chalk. As soon as Hannah stepped into the centre of it, it alighted in a solid gold color and the symbol of the glyph rose up around her and Auramon. She waved at the others, while marvelling at what was taking place. Ryudamon summoned a ball of gold energy in his paws which grew as he expanded his arms. He leapt from his place releasing the energy above Hannah and Auramon. There was a flash of shimmering gold light and they had disappeared.

“They’ll be okay, right?” Tom asked, “I mean, you haven’t transported them to the middle the freeway.”

Ryudamon did not look amused, “No, but I’m sure I could do that for you if you want.”

“No; back where you found us is perfect.” Eva said quickly. Ryudamon quickly redrew the symbol on the ground and ushered the group onto it. They fit easily enough with everyone holding their Digimon to themselves. Ryudamon was already summoning the gold ball of energy.

“Wait!” He stopped, rotating the sphere. “Will we see you again?” Piper asked, she hesitated to step out of the glowing glyph.

“Undoubtedly.” Ryudamon told her with a small grin, “I’ll always be around.” Piper smiled and backed into her place where she had stood before. The sphere of energy expanded and Ryudamon did as he had done before, leaped above the group and released the energy to surround them.

They were enveloped in a shining gold aura, warm and pleasant, not like when they had been transported the first time. The sphere seemed to encase them like a semi-see through egg shell. Outside of the shining case, the Digital World was disappearing with Ryudamon watching them, and being replaced by the docks and warehouses where the fight had taken place. Wood was forming under their feet. The massive trees and the wooden house they had become accustomed to became buildings and crates; sky scrapers sprouted up in the distance. Through the shell they could hear the sounds of machinery and water. Cars and talking.

The ground firm beneath them, the sphere of energy dissipated, disappearing in a puff like someone had spilled a tube of glitter around them. No one spoke, taking in their surroundings, getting the feeling of familiarity all over again.

There was no doubting it, they were home.


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