This is crazy, I know. 2 years late for a short epilogue? There's totally a reason for it. I did finish this two years ago, but… See notes after the chapter.
Odaiba, One Year Later
It was crowded. God, was it crowded. People everywhere. Dignitaries, heads of state, presidents, monarchs, influential celebrities, and their protection staffs all squeezed into this one room. Granted, it was a massive ballroom, and normally would have been more than accommodating. But still this was a lot of people. A lot of important people. Damn near every person that played a crucial role in preserving the safety of the digital world. They were taking an incredibly stupid risk, gathering in one place like this.
"Honey, calm down. It's okay." Tai felt a hand on his shoulder and a tender kiss on his cheek. He turned to face Jun, and she gave him a smile made all the more radiant by a brilliant wedding gown that glowed with the scattered light of the many crystal chandeliers overhead. Sora's design hugged her form perfectly and the material felt like some exquisite combination of silk and velvet, which Tai couldn't help but absentmindedly rub as he placed a hand at the small of her back and leaned towards her.
"Just all these people in one place. It's dangerous. What if the Evolvers or CoDiT decided to hit this place?"
Jun laughed and shook her head. "Digital terrorists? Honestly honey, this is the last place in the world any of them would be."
Tai looked around the room, at the hundreds of digital knights, digimon, and cadets, most of them in same state of alert as he. "I guess you're right."
"See? I told you-" Jun paused, a contemplative scowl crossing her countenance. "Of course, it would be an excellent opportunity for them to strike elsewhere…"
Tai groaned. "She giveth and she taketh away."
"Oh, hush." Jun tapped him on the chest with a light chuckle. "We're supposed to be paying attention to Clara, anyway."
Tai nodded at her mention of the Protective Knight and turned his attention back to the ornate performance stage at the end of the hall where the girl in question was belting out a beautiful tribute to them, as usual her voice touching on every note in the song perfectly.
"Speaking of which," whispered Tai, "Why is she singing Moon River? What kind of wedding song is that?" His gaze narrowed. "What did you tell her?"
A small, mischievous grin crossed Jun's face before she chided him with finger to his lips. "Hush."
The groom shook his head and gave in with a shrug. If Jun was going to betray his secret to anyone, of course it would be to her best friend. And, he had to admit as Clara crooned and navigated the notes with expert skill, he'd never heard it performed better. When the song finished the room filled with applause, particularly raucous shouts and cheers coming from all the Knights in attendance
Terence, seated immediately to Tai's left, cupped a hand to his mouth and stood up. "Clara Sanchez everybody!" he shouted over the din. "Give it up! Remember, her debut album releases next month, so cop it on our website or at your local music stores! And if I hear about any of you downloading it off torrents-"
"Terence-" Curtis grumbled.
"No, seriously. I lost money on my last album from those damn sites. You know they can rip the audio from Youtube? It's ridiculous." He turned back to the others. "I'm serious people! If I catch any of you-"
Rosa interrupted him by slamming a fist on the table. "Terence, if you don't shut it right now, I'm going to come across this table and strangle you."
Terence looked down the bridesmaids side of the table, where Kuri, Sora and Kari were also seated, all of them glaring at him. Even the digimon seated between them looked angry.
"Come on guys," said Tai, barely restraining his laughter. "Leave my Best Man alone."
"Yeah, ya'll didn't even let me get to me and Matt's mash-up album that drops next month."
Matt, seated at the end of the table across form Sora, raised his hands defensively. "Hey leave me out of this."
"Well Terence," said Jun, with an sardonic smile as she looked at him over the top of her champagne glass. "I can't say that any of that was any less appropriate than the toast you gave. You do remember that there are children attending our wedding?"
"What? That was practical advice! You'll be thanking me on your honeymoon when-" Terrence stopped and stood, beaming proudly as Clara arrived back at the table. She blushed and accepted another round of applause from the group, a hug from Tai, and a kiss on the cheek from Jun before taking her seat.
"I'm glad you liked it." she said to Tai. "Jun said that song was one you used to s-" She paused when she noticed the bride making a neck-slicing gesture. "Nevermind."
Clara was barely able to return to her seat before a virtual army of tuxedoed men, all bearing musical instruments, swarmed around their table, on their way to the stage. Many of them gawked at the Knights seated at the table as they passed, their amazement at being in the presence of the "Eight Chosen Saviors" evident on their faces
"Would you look at all those people," said Rosa. "They can barely fit on the stage."
"Who are they?" Davis asked, frowning in disapproval at the spectacle
Tai gave a shrug. "I dunno, some country's philharmonic or something."
"Wow," said Matt, watching as the seemingly endless line of musicians filed onto the platform. "And I thought our wedding was insane."
"It was," said Tai, remembering the surprise mutant attack that had interrupted the couple's outdoor reception and the exhilarating battle that ensued. "But at least you were able to invite who you wanted. If we left some ambassador or dignitary off the list it could start an international incident."
"Ugh," Jun shook her head. "My fingers still hurt from all that hand shaking we did."
"That's what you get for being superheroes," said Marta. "Comes with the territory."
"Which is exactly why our wedding will be held at a secret time and location that no one knows," said Terrence. "You'll get you invites by armed courier." He gave a confident smile and winked across the table at Clara, who grinned back at him.
Tai leaned towards him. "This wouldn't happen to be the same private island you're letting me and Jun borrow for our honeymoon, would it?"
"Ok, so you know," Terence whispered. "Don't blab it."
"Honestly," said Kuri. "All this effort and ceremony. No offense, but I don't see the point. Davis and I practically share a brain. How much more together can you be?"
Tai didn't fall for the aspiring actress's façade for one second, not when her hands were always somehow in position to prominently show off her recently acquired engagement ring.
"Oh, please Kuri," he said. "Just stop. You can't fool us with that routine."
A brief smirk crossed her face, confirming his suspicions, before she said, "Tai, look at me." She gestured to her bridesmaid dress with a scowl. "This ceremony is the only time in my entire life where I'll be required to wear a bright orange outfit and not be in prison or on a roadwork crew. I look like a giant creamsicle."
"A stylish giant creamsicle." Terence gave a mocking thumbs-up, which earned him a glare from the Compassionate Knight. "What? It's not like I made the dresses."
Sora shrugged. "Don't blame me. I had a more…reserved style picked out, but Jun changed her mind."
Kuri turned her attention to the bride. "Jun, what the hell?"
Jun bit her lip and pretended not to hear.
"It was too stylish." Said Sparks with a laugh. "Even Jun isn't above wanting her bridesmaids to look like dogs compared to her on her wedding day."
Now Rosa turned to look at the bride. "Jun?"
"Clara convinced me to do it."
Clara's eyes went wide and she put a hand to her chest. "You just put me out there like that?"
"Well, it's my wedding day…" Jun gave an exaggerated pout.
"Fine." Clara sighed, shook her head, and raised a hand. "It's all my fault then."
"Everyone shut up and clap," hissed Agumon. "The guys that we have no idea who they are just finished."
As one, the group looked up to the stage and gave broad smiles and applause. Terence, of course, took it overboard, whistling and banging the table. The band took this as encouragement and immediately began playing another selection.
"Oops." Terence shrugged. "Sorry."
Tai grinned. "Way to go. Some Best Man you are."
"That's not what you were saying the other night in Vegas when I threw you the most awesome bachelor party ever."
Clara cleared her throat and looked pointedly between the two. "Speaking of which-"
"Oh damn," Terence muttered. "Sorry again." Every male at the table suddenly looked down, finding the embroidered tablecloth intensely interesting.
"Yeah." said Kuri. "Exactly what went down there? I saw on the news they had to contain several fires and they're talking about enacting a 'no drinking and digivolving' law."
Kari nodded. "And there was that ridiculous picture of Imperialdramon posing on top of the MGM Grand."
"What?" exclaimed Gatomon. She glared over at Veemon. "I thought you said you guys didn't go to the party?"
Veemon cleared his throat with a nervous guffaw. "D-did I say that?"
"Pretty sure you did." Sparks offered with an amused smirk.
Marta glared at her boyfriend, as well. "So did you."
The Elecmon chafed under the withering stare. "Well, I -uh, chalk it up to a learning experience. Besides, Patamon was there too."
"What?" Exclaimed Peko. "You were?"
"You know," Patamon scratched his head. "I honestly don't remember."
"See?" Said Sparks to Marta. "One thing I learned was that Patamon are terrible at holding their liquor."
"Now I'm curious." Kari leaned forward and looked down the male side of the table suspiciously. "What exactly went down at this party?"
"We'll tell you," said Terence, "just as soon as you fill us in on the bachelorette party."
Now it was the girls turns to share anxious glances.
"Alright, time for a change of subject!" Said Sora, clapping her hands together, and prompting a curious look from Matt.
Tai smiled and gave in to the suggestion "So," He said, glancing between Curtis and Rosa. "Mr. and Mrs. Academy prefects, how are things going with your new position?"
"Ugh." Curtis put a hand to his forehead. "You had to bring that up."
"Not the reaction I was expecting."
"We have to do night patrols," explained Rosa. "It kinda sucks."
Jun chuckled. "So you guys are the new Sensei Enn, huh?"
Curtis gave a nod. "It was one thing when the Academy was just a three story mansion, but now that it's a 30 floor complex…" He shook his head. "Damn near impossible."
"Oh, cry me a river," said Kuri. "Only the first ten floors are the actual academy. You don't have to patrol dispatch or the med center."
"What?" The Meditative Knight scowled. "You think the little bastards don't sneak up there? They're devil-spawn, I tell you."
Terence snickered. "What goes around. Karma's a bitch ain't it?"
"Well I love it," said Rosa, beaming. "It's like a new challenge every night, finding whatever new make-out spot they're using, busting them trying to sneak down to the lake. And this is just summer training. Can you imagine how crazy it will be when the new semester starts?"
"Yeah," chimed in Kari, "I'm pretty excited. Especially since Gennai's giving my Early Start sessions a try and will bring in a couple 10 and under classes for me to tutor."
Curtis groaned and let his head drop to the table.
"Oh, don't sweat it," encouraged Davis. "Jiro, Kin, and Kentaro are entering this year, so that's three new informants for you. Plus, we'll all be back to help you out by then."
At that moment, Joe, Mimi and Izzy came by the table and greeted the newlyweds with warm hugs and congratulations.
"Oh Jun," cooed Mimi to the bride, bubbling with excitement as she took her hands. "You look beautiful."
"Thank-you." Jun blushed at the compliment, as she had continuously done all day. Tai still found it adorable.
"Also," Davis cut in, giving Mimi a bright grin. "Congrats to you on this great food!"
"Well thank-you Davis, and before you ask it, no, my ramen recipes are not for sale."
"Mimi, come on!" the Miraculous Knight pleaded, "I'm trying to get a franchise going here!"
"You have what, five carts so far?"
"So, you giving me a part ownership stake?"
Davis sighed, grumbled something to himself, and looked away.
Mimi giggled. "You big grump. We'll negotiate it. I'll be catering for Digitamamon at academy events this next semester too, so I should see you plenty."
"I'll be there too." said Izzy, "now that I'm running Tech Ops with Willis."
Mimi reached out and took his hand at this and the two shared a smile. It was more than evident to anyone that cared to look that she was particularly proud of Izzy's renewed involvement in the cutting edge technology of the Digital World. It made him happy, and he'd finally realized that was all she ever wanted for him. The two had already set up their in-semester residence in the Realm; lavishly plush, of course, to suit Mimi's tastes.
"And I've decided to set up a permanent practice in the Med center instead of shuttling back and forth all the time," added Joe. "Serving both humans and digimon. So I'll be around." Joe said this in the offhanded and humble way in which he did everything, but Tai saw right past it, knowing that the Digidesined of Reliability was incredibly proud of participating just as much as anyone in the never-ending fight to protect the Digital and Real worlds, all without having to throw a single punch.
"Good to know." Said Terence. "Because those kids are gonna need you after I get done putting them through their paces."
"Yeah, right." said Clara. "You'll just be the combat assistant. Like a glorified TA. Ms. Lee would break you in half before she let you harm a student."
"A guy can dream."
Tai chuckled at his wistful tone and looked up just in time to see another group approaching the table. A broad grin crossed his face. "Well, look who it is."
He stood, along with Jun, and both shook hands and shared hugs with Ken, Yolei, Cody, and Noriko. "So glad to see that Odaiba's finest detective could make it today."
Ken grinned. "Wouldn't miss it for the world. By the way, I'm just Odaiba's finest sergeant. Still have to complete my exams."
"What?" said Davis. "Helping to save the world didn't put you on the fast track?"
"Would've," answered Yolei. "But he insisted on doing it 'the right way.'" She said the words as if annoyed, but a constant grin betrayed her true pride.
Jun turned to Cody. "And I hear you're going to law school soon?"
He nodded and Davis gave him a pat on the shoulder. "Cool, so now we'll have someone to make sure the guys we catch get put behind bars."
"Actually, I'm planning on becoming a defense attorney," said Cody. "I'd like to do my best to make sure what happened to Sato Kobe isn't repeated."
"Well, that's a very honorable thing to do," said Tai. "Of course," he looked between Cody and Noriko, "you'll also have to deal with this rash of vigilantism going around lately."
"Yeah," added Kuri, "for instance, word on the street is there's this armor plated mutant and gun wielding ninja chick going around town, bashing criminals' heads at night."
"Really?" Noriko gave her a perfectly innocent stare. "Imagine that. Weird."
Cody gave a shrug. "You never know with these kids today."
"Uh-huh." Kuri crossed her arms and chuckled. "Well, I guess you could look into it, being an armor plated mutant yourself. It's interesting that particular detail about you was left out of T.K.'s Chronicles II."
As TK fidgeted uncomfortably, Kari had to laugh, and added, "I've also noticed that these vigilantes always seem to catch criminals from cases that Ken's precinct happens to be working."
"Alright guys," Ken raised his hands, smiling. "Let's leave the rumors out of-" He paused and pulled a vibrating cell phone out of his jacket pocket. "Hang on." Ken scrutinized the screen for a moment and his expression dropped.
"What's up?" asked Tai.
"Nothing we can't handle, but it looks like I may have to go."
Tai held out a hand. "Let me see."
"No, it's okay. We-"
"Fine." Ken handed over the phone with a pensive frown and Tai read the message on the screen. A smile gradually crossed his face and he looked at the other Knights around the table. This was perfect.
Jun leaned towards him. "What is it?"
He held up the phone for her to see and her expression brightened, as well.
"You up for it?" he asked.
"You know it."
Tai handed the phone back to Ken and gave him a nod. "We got this one."
"But guys," he protested with a huff, "this is your wedding day."
"And you just gave us the perfect wedding gift. Thanks."
The aspiring detective was about to argue further, but paused, looked at the couple, and shook his head, realizing then that they really did consider this the perfect wedding gift.
"Alright," He gave in. "Have fun, I guess."
"Planning on it."
"And please don't leave me with a ton of paperwork."
"We make no such promise," said Jun, grinning when Ken shook his head and sighed.
The bride then turned back to the rest of the table. "Well, guys, I just want to thank you all so much for being here for us and with us today, but by the anxious looks I'm getting from our wedding planner across the room, I do think that it's time for the bride and groom to make their grand departure."
"Sure," said Matt, raising a brow suggestively. "Can't wait to get to the honeymoon, eh? I've been there."
"Yeah…" said Sora wistfully, a flirtatious smile playing across her face as she looked at her husband. She shook her head to break the reverie, then gave the groom a pointed stare. "Tai, you be careful with that dress. It's ridiculously expensive and a one of a kind Takenouchi original design. Don't go ripping it off at the first-"
"Ugh," interrupted Agumon, dropping a piece of chicken back onto the plate before him. "Do you mind? Some of us were trying to eat."
"Thank-you," added Pings.
Jun laughed. She looked over at the one-time holder of Tai's affections, now one of her best friends, and gave her a wink. "Don't worry Sora, we'll be careful."
"Alright then," said Terence. "You two get out of here."
The couple rose from their seats and quickly went about greeting anyone they'd missed, making one last lap around the cavernous room, exchanging pleasantries with hundreds of their fellow Knights, along with countless dignitaries they'd never seen before, before finally being escorted out to their waiting limo amid a cacophony of loud cheers and raining rice. As the two piled in, Tai furtively pulled out his digivice and sent out a mass message.
"Well," sad Tai, looking out of the back window of the luxurious car as they pulled away. He ran a hand through his hair and let out a deep breath. "That was fun."
Jun leaned in towards him, a sensual look in her eyes, and wrapped her arms around his neck. "It certainly was," She pulled him to her, closing her eyes with an anticipatory sigh, but stopped with their lips just an inch apart. "Husband."
The sound of her calling him that exhilarated Tai in a way nothing ever had and he pushed forward to complete the kiss, partly motivated just to erase the goofy grin he knew was plastered across his face. Jun responded with more fervor, curling a leg around his waist and forcing him down to the seat on top of her
"Jun," Tai gasped between kisses. "We have to-" She pulled him to her again and he abandoned all pretense of expressing a rational thought, emitting only a droning "Mmmmm..."
After another minute had passed, Jun broke off and pushed them apart, giggling as she used a thumb to remove her lipstick from his face. Tai groaned at the loss.
"Your plan, silly." She said, sitting up.
"Damn the plan." He pushed towards her again and she held up a hand to stall him before pointing out of the window.
"Looks like we're here."
Tai turned and silently cursed when he saw that she was right. Out of the window was the familiar facade of Highton View Terrace staring back at him. Jun began easing out of her wedding dress and Tai called out to the driver, "Hey, this is our stop!"
The older gentleman lowered the limo's partition and looked back at the couple through the rear-view mirror. "I'm sorry sir? I thought we were heading to your home, then the airport?"
"Yeah, change of plans, actually." Tai removed his tux jacket. "We have something to take care of first. Just wait here for us. I promise we won't be long." The driver sighed, grumbling something about "kids today" and raised the partition again. Tai helped Jun carefully slip out of her dress, making sure not to rip any of the frilled edges or crease the satin fabric like Sora had warned, and the two then stepped out of the car, Jun wearing only a knee-length gown.
"I can't believe I'm standing in the middle of town in this," she muttered, giving him an accusatory glance.
"Well, let's do something about it then." Tai produced his digivice from his pocket and Jun followed his lead. With twin flashes, both were quickly cloaked in their Knights uniforms and shields.
"So," said Jun, "When are the others-"
A concussive boom and blast of wind interrupted her words, forcing the newlyweds to duck down and shield themselves. Tai looked up and found the source of the disturbance, an amused Kuri and Peko in her Prariemon form.
"So," said Kuri, wearing a smirk that gave away her enjoyment at surprising them. "What was so big that you guys couldn't even make it out of town before calling us?"
Tai ignored the question, instead giving the Compassionate Knight a nonplussed stare. "You got here fast. You changed that quick?"
Now it was Kuri's turn to give a look of confusion. "Changed?"
"Oh no." Jun put a hand to her chest. "Kuri, you didn't!"
"What? Oh, the dress? Jun, I told you guys I hated that thing."
"Sora's going to kill you." Tai said with a shake of his head
A shadow fell over the group and they all looked up to see a fully uniformed Davis descending towards them alongside ExVeemon, who held Sparks and Agumon in his arms.
"Hey slowpokes," greeted Peko.
As they landed, Davis looked over at his fiancée with the hints of a smile. "Sora's going to kill you, you know."
"That seems to be the consensus," she shrugged. "Still totally worth it."
"Alright, remember you said that." Davis turned his attention to the married couple as Exveemon released their partners. "And just what is this about? I've got a patrol in Moscow in like half an hour, and don't you two have a flight to catch?"
Tai raised a finger. "Tell you in a sec. Here come the others."
The sound of tires squealing against pavement brought the group's attention to a black sports-car careening through a nearby intersection. The car sped towards them, ran up on the curb, and stopped just a few feet short of an amused Kuri.
She shook her head. "Typical."
The doors of the vehicle opened, rotating up instead of outwards and an ecstatic Rosa spilled out of the driver's side. "Butterfly doors!" She beamed as the car's other uniformed occupants exited warily. Gotsumon fell to his knees and looked ready to hurl.
"Spared no expense, huh?" Tai said to Terence, who was patting himself down to ensure he was still in one piece.
"He has no one to blame but himself for this," said Clara, shooting an irritated glare in the Inspirational Knight's direction. "First he bought her the damned thing, then he taught her how to drive it like a maniac."
"I think she drives okay," said Curtis, shortly before stumbling into the side of the car and leaning against it to regain his equilibrium.
"My brother, the diplomat..." Terence looked over to Tai. "So, what is this all about, anyway?"
"Figured since we're all in the same place for the first time in quite a while, we might as well have a little non-wedding related fun." He pulled out his phone. "Check out this intel we got from Ken."
Tai tossed the device to Terence, who scrutinized the screen for a moment, then released a sigh. "You two don't even understand the meaning of the word "honeymoon" do you?"
Tai grinned and Jun gave a shrug.
"Let me see," said Curtis as he took the phone from his brother. Rosa and Clara peered over his shoulder.
"Hmm, weapons trafficking," muttered the younger Dumars, "and organized too." He passed the phone to Davis and Kuri.
"Damn mutants are really expanding their horizons, aren't they?" remarked the latter.
"We've been seeing a lot of this lately, haven't we?" asked Clara. "They're moving a lot of weapons, but not actually using them?"
Tai nodded. "Looks like."
"For what?" Curtis scratched his temple as he pondered. "And where are they getting the money? Last I knew, they were surrendering in droves just to get three hots and a cot in prison, now they're doing this? They haven't been this organized since Hitachi was around. Are they preparing for something? Who's leading them?"
Kuri shrugged. "I think those are the questions we're hoping to get answered here."
"And this is all going down at the docks, right here in town, right now?" Asked Davis, looking over the info on the phone one last time before handing it back to Tai. A grin gradually overtook him. "Interesting. Stupid, but interesting."
"Sure is," replied his sister. "Apparently, they thought they could catch us napping during the wedding and would pull this off right under our noses."
"It'll be just like old times," said Rosa, pounding her fist into an open palm. "You see the list of names? We even got a few blacklisted mercs on this thing that we had run-ins with last year, not to mention all those mutants. Ken's informant was awesome, because we are about to go bash some heads."
"Alright, alright," Tai raised a hand to calm her, himself struggling to keep from giving in to her infectious enthusiasm. "We're not going in without a plan."
"We already have one," said Sparks, "or did you not hear the whole head-bashing proposal?"
"Dude's got a point," said Kuri, "Guy like Hitachi needed a plan. These guys? Head bashing."
"Okay, okay." Tai rolled his eyes. "How about this? Me, Jun, Curtis, and Rosa take the front. Davis, Kuri, Terrence, and Clara take the back."
"Wait, what?" protested Taps, looking absolutely scandalized. "We digimon are just supposed to sit this one out? That's some bull."
Tai closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose. True, it had been a while since the sixteen of them had all worked together, but this was ridiculous. Their independence earned by routinely policing completely separate hemispheres of the planet while the Digital Knights built their ranks had caused his leadership to become the burden it was always cracked up to be. He took a breath. "No, you'll be with your partners. I thought that was implied."
"Could have at least told us directly," said Marta. "Don't see why we gotta be the only ones whose roles are 'implied.' That's messed up."
"I-" Tai turned and gave an exasperated look to Jun, as if to ask, Was it always this hard?
And she just smiled back at him, in her spectacularly encouraging way, wordlessly telling him, Of course it was. That's why you have to do it.
Tai nodded to the others apologetically. "Okay, sorry to leave out you digimon. My bad. You'll all be with your partners on this one, okay? Now, are we ready to do this?"
"Hell yeah!" Agumon yelled, throwing a clawed fist into the air.
Peko whooped and kicked up a gust of wind as she ran a few supersonic circles around the group. The rest exchanged shouts of encouragement and fist bumps as Davis evolved ExVeemon to his Imperialdramon Paladin mode and his group piled aboard. Jun and Tai evolved their partners to their respective forms of SaberLeomon and Greymon. Curtis and Rosa then leapt upon the back of the former while Gotsumon and Taps climbed onto the latter's shoulders. With everyone situated and ready to go, Tai surprised Jun by walking up behind her and neatly scooping her into his arms. She gasped at first, then laughed as they quickly lifted off of the ground.
"This will never get old," she said, eyes sparkling with mirth as she looked up at her grinning husband.
"Hey!" Terrence shouted to them from Imperialdramon's back, "Ya'll do know that's not how the whole 'carrying over the threshold' thing works, right?"
"Works fine for me!" Jun shouted back. She pulled in tighter against Tai's chest to buffer against the winds whipping around them as they ascended and watched as a magnificent menagerie of orange streaking across the cityscape, broken here and there by the elongated shadows of its many buildings, gradually came into view. The setting sun was slowly sinking into the horizon, still providing enough light for the two to watch their friends and partners heading off in the direction of the Odaiba waterfront.
"Um, Tai," Jun turned to look up at him quizzically. "Shouldn't we be going with them?"
"In a minute." He leaned down and effortlessly captured her lips with his, meeting not the slightest bit of protest as she instinctively wrapped her arms around him and met his passion with her own, their dancing tongues and caressing bodies further driven and exhilarated by the prospect that they were hundreds of feet in the air. Tai ran a hand through her hair, firmly holding her against him as he lost himself in her, and vice-versa, neither of them fully cognizant of the fact that anyone with a half-decent pair of binoculars could see everything they were doing. Still, the both of them could not forget what they were there for and what they had evolved to do, so the kiss eventually broke with mutual agreement, though not without matching looks of longing in the couple's eyes.
"This is the most perfect day ever." Tai said, planting another gentle kiss on her forehead. "I got to marry the most beautiful, incredible, woman in the world, and we're about to go off fighting the forces of evil with our best friends, just like old times. I can't imagine anything better."
"I can, but I don't think we can exactly do that in mid-air," A pensive look crossed Jun's face. "Though I have no idea why we haven't tried yet."
Tai smiled. She had a point.
"We'll have to file that one for later though," she said. "Right now, we need to catch up with the others, Tai." She made a show of cracking her knuckles. "We wait any longer and there might not be much left for us."
"Yes ma'am." Tai grinned and held her tighter as her rolled them into a dive to gain speed. The buildings below them gradually became larger, then turned into blurs as his trajectory flattened out. Before them he could see where the skyline abruptly ended and the waters of the sea began, and somewhere in there was the warehouse that was their target. Tai put on a burst of speed, shooting forward like a bullet.
He felt the woman he loved in his arms as she clutched him, holding on and trusting him with all of her heart and soul. And even then, he still felt that he trusted her with so much more. She was his future, his motivation, his purpose. She was that one that allowed him to love this expanse of infrastructure and urban sprawl below him in ways he never thought he would again. She was the reason that it, and the rest of the world, hadn't been swallowed into another dimension over a year ago. Tai watched the buildings and the people of the city, his city, his home, speed by, all knowing they would be safe as long as he and the Digital Knights were around to defend them. And they were right. His smile never wavered as they streaked through the air and he allowed one last thought enter his mind before his focus would turn to the fight to come.
Odaiba never looked so beautiful.
So that's it. The Final Chapter, with a corny little mirror device between the first and last sentences of this story that I just couldn't resist using. Thanks to everyone that read this entire epic beast of a story throughout its twists and turns. It was fun getting lost in this world of Mercenaries, Mutants, corrupt officials, digimon and Knights for months, even years at a time. Wouldn't mind doing it again.
So, the explanation:
First of all, shout out to Anthony1 for making me aware of this. Okay, so here's what happened. I finished the last Tennozan chapter and this shortly after, added them both to my copy of the story on my computer, got started on some other projects (lots of editing, new job, and a comic I'm working on), and whenever I got the urge to read any of this fic or to show it to someone, I looked at the copy saved on my laptop.
I HAD NO FREAKIN IDEA I HAD NEVER POSTED THIS ONLINE. Holy crap, two whole years. All I can do is laugh and apologize for trolling you guys so hard with my epic brainfart. When I got the message in my email from Anthony1 asking when there would ever be an epilogue posted I was like, "What is he talking about? I put that up forever ago." Then I pulled up the story on here, saw the final chapter, and just said, "Well… f-ck." Went and tracked this down on my old laptop, and came straight here to post it
So, anyway, this was just a wrap up type thing that I'm sure is a bit of a letdown now with such a long wait behind it rather than just the couple days it was meant to take. I did leave more of an obvious hint of a sequel in here that I had pretty much planned out (there are hints throughout the story actually, but they're super hidden and would only be recognized in hindsight), but now I'm not sure I could find the time to write it. Haven't given up on it yet, just got a lot on my plate right now. Let me know in reviews and messages if that's something you'd like to see/read (also, you have free license to call me a brain-dead moron for forgetting to post this in your reviews).
(Post Final Edit AN (2012) Would still love to write that sequel, but it could definitely be a while, especially if my comic takes off like I hope. In addition to being a decent writer, I'm a pretty good artist, so I'm finally attempting to combine both talents into one project. Working myself ragged at it too. Once again, thanks for Reading and Reviewing all these years. Trust me, I would have abandoned this thing back in 2005 if it weren't for the reviews encouraging me to continue. Very much appreciated.)