Strands of the moon's glowing essence poured into a small one story house through a small window, illuminating some of the darkness that lived there. The house that was in previous hours filled with childish screams and fits of laughter had fallen quiet to a serene enviornment. Two young children, a young boy and a young girl; almost equal in age slept soundly in their shared room, but off on the other side of a room a dark purple imp digimon stirred with sadness painted on his face.
The small rookie digimon tossed and turned, plagued with the start of a horrible nightmare. Sweet dreams of his two tamers and the digital world were torn to mere shreds before his very eyes and were replaced with three red eyes glaring back at him. A cry of alarm came from Impmon's sleeping form as he turned over.
In his mind his digivoled self, Beelzemon was towering over a broken all too familar Kyubimon, poised to strike the final blow.
"Any last words, chatty?"
"Pl-please don't do this.."Replied Kyubimon weakly as she struggled to look up at the demon lord. In a flash the scene had changed to Leomon grabbing a hold of Beelzemon's arm.
"Do you really think hurting these children makes you stronger?" The taller lion digimon asked and went to continue to speak but was only interrupted when Beelzemon's claws buried themselves deep within his gut. The unbearable pain caused Leomon to recoil and fall back onto the ground, as his body slowly started to turn to data. A scream of horror and the faint clatter of a digivice hitting the ground were the only things that echoed in his mind as it went blank.
Impmon cringed, breaking out into a sweat as the nightmare faded, and became a cruel reality that immortalized itself into his memory. Hearing another cry for the fallen digimon, Impmon shot up and looked around with wide eyes. His chest heaved rapidly as if he had ran a mile with cinderblocks as shoes.
"I..I need ta learn not ta eat so much candy before bed.."He mumbled to himself as he hid his face within his red gloved hands. Of course Impmon had learned over time, candy was not the cause of this repeating nightmare. It was his own guilt filled concious.
Even though it had been a couple months since Leomon's death and the D-reapers attack he couldn't stop thinking about it. The way Jeri looked at him with those frightened eyes of hers as tears poured down her cheeks. It broke another new part of him he never realized he had before, a heart.
The small ten-year-old girl had told him that she had forgiven him, but for some reason he had a hard time believing her. Why would she just forgive him like that? He had deleted her partner before her very eyes and absorbed all his data. Didn't she know that there was no chance of the brave lion coming back for her? There would be no strong digimon keeping her protected, no Leomon to reassure her when she was afraid, and certainly no partner to create cheerful memories with.
A powerful shudder raked up Impmon's back. He needed to know why. Impmon needed to know how Jeri could just forgive him like that. Slowly Impmon looked around, noting that both his tamers were still sleeping and got down to the floor.
"I need ta know. Don't worry ya two. I'll be back before breakfast." He whispered softly to the unconcious duo before opening the door, and sneaking out.
Walking out into the hallway he froze hearing the floor squeak. A small curse slipped out and he glared at the floor. Why does it seem that anytime you're trying to be quiet everything you do sounds like a chorus is following you? Impmon thought this to himself as he carefully made his way out of the house, silently praying he didn't wake anyone up.
The cool night air rushed to greet his warmed fur, causing him to shiver slightly and cross his arms over his chest, rubbing his arms. Perhaps he could just wait till morning when it would be warmer out? No, quickly Impmon took off towards Jeri's house and in an instant he had become a much taller, more well built, leather clad dark angel.
Pulling his jacket a bit closer to himself he flicked his black feathered wings and flew up into the air. Beelzemon only flew up high enough to avoid all the people and annoying honking cars but close enough to see where the street signs were.
Following the streets the way he normally would on the ground he quickly found himself at the Katou family residence. Slowly he walked towards the traditional Japanese one story home and peered through each of the windows, trying to locate which one was Jeri's room.
He stopped at one window, staring into a room that had a small girl, sleeping in her bed with most of her short brown hair covering her face and the blanets nearly pulled up to her chin. Knowing it was Jeri he knocked on the window to try and wake her up.
The human girl only stirred a little and turned to the other side. So Beelzemon knocked louder than before, this managing to make the girl open her eyes.
"Huh? Whats..that noise?" She asked herself and sat up, looking around the room. Jeri looked around her room and saw nothing out of the ordinary and was about the rest her head back on her pillow when she heard the knock again.
It was then that she looked over at the window and spotted someone peering in at her. At first she was going to let out a scream but luckily she quickly recognized it as her friend Beelzemon.
"What are you doing here Beelzemon?" Questioned Jeri, talking to herself more than to the digimon that stood at her window. Slowly she stood up, her body cracking back into place as she stretched and walk over to the window.
"What is it Beelzemon? Is something wrong?"She asked with a yawn as she opened up the window.
"Jeri. I need ta talk ta ya about somethin'.."
"Alright but its really late Beelzemon. Can't it.." She was about to ask if it can wait but the look in his eyes told her he wouldn't be able to sleep right if he didn't talk to her.
"Okay. I'll be outside in a moment." She said quietly. Beelzemon nodded satisfyed that she would talk to him and walked away from the window, sitting down on the porch steps.
With a sigh Jeri lazily pulled on a light jacket over her pj top and headed towards the door. She slipped on her shoes and opened up the door as quietly as she could, seeing the dark digimon.
"Beelzemon? Whats the matter?"She asked as she walked out and stood beside him, pulling the jacket tightly around her small frame.
"Hm..Do ya mind if we walk towards the park? I don't wanna wake up your family."
Jeri nodded, understanding that it would turn out badly if her father or her little half brother would wake up. With that the pair started to head down the path that lead to the park not to far away. After a few moments of awkward silence Beelzemon was the first to speak.
"Jeri? Why did ya forgive me?" He suddenly asked in a somewhat sad tone.
"Huh what do you mean?"
"I killed your partner..I absorbed his data and I put ya through all that D-reaper stuff. How could ya possibly forgive me that easily?"
Jeri was taken back by this. Why had she forgiven him so easily? Why would he ask something like that. The 10 year old girl looked up at him and smiled.
"Why wouldn't I have forgiven you? You went through all that trouble just to save me. You even almost got deleted because of me.."She said whispering the last part with a sad sigh.
After a little while longer they both took a break of walking and sat down on one of the many benches that littered the park.
"But Jeri. I destroyed Leomon. If anyone had destroyed my partner I could never forgive them. No matter what they did..I couldn't." Responded Beelzemon as he looked down at his hands.
Jeri looked down and sighed.
"Its true. I was really upset that you killed him. When you did that. I hated you. But then I realized when the D-Reaper had me I couldn't hate you. Leomon wouldn't have wanted me to. Leomon would have wanted me to be happy even though he is gone. Maybe..Its because you reminded me of him." She said with a smile slowly appearing on her face.
"What do ya mean?"
"You were so determined to save me. You didn't care about what happened to yourself. Despite knowing that if you messed up you could be deleted you came to rescue me. Beelzemon you put your own life aside to save me. I guess what i'm trying to say is that maybe you too have a lion's heart." She said and looked up at him, starting to shake from a cold wind that began to blow and cut right through her jacket, straight to her core.
Noticing her shivering he slowly pulled off his jacket and laid it on her shoulders. She jumped a little and looked up at him with a bit of surprise.
"H-Here. I don't want ya catching a cold. I dragged ya all the way out here in the middle of the night.." He answered.
"Ya..really think I have a Lion's heart? I guess I do if ya put it that way. But I did that cause I wanted ta make it up ta ya."
"But you cared enough to do it." She countered
Beelzemon was at a loss of words. This girl forgave him because she saw good in him. She saw that deep down inside he wasn't a bad guy after all. Or perhaps she was only saying that to make him feel better. But somehow he knew she wasn't lying. It was deep in his gut. No a little higher, a feeling in his heart that reassured him that she was telling him the truth.
A small smile appeared on his face as he stared down at the little girl beside him.
"Thanks Jeri..I-" He was cut off when she suddenly leaned against him and was snoring quietly. Jeri had fallen asleep right there next to him.
Carefully Beelzemon picked her up, holding her close to him in his arms and stood up.
"Heh I guess its time I got ya home." He spoke softly to her sleeping form and flew up into the air.
As he flew up into the air he saw that just beyond the horizon the sun began to peak. Colors of bright orange and yellow washed over them, causing the girl in his arms to stir and hide her face in his chest.
"Beelzemon.." She mumbled softly and smiled in her sleep. A red tint covered his cheeks upon hearing this and looked back towards the sun.
"Jeri..I promise ya. I'll always keep ya safe from now on. I am no Leomon..But like him I will do my best ta protect ya. I'll do it cause Leomon would want that..and because like ya said..
..I have a Lion's heart too now."