...I hope you guys enjoy this chapter.
Disclaimer: Silly authors! Digimon is owned by... someone else. Bandai, maybe?
Chapter 10: Origins and Explanations
Kazu sat up straight, sputtering and wiping excess water from his face. Looking up, he saw Takato shaking a bucket on top of him. Noticing Kazu now awake, Takato looked at the offending item, then at Kazu, before throwing the bucket to the side and smiling apologetically. When Kazu still persisted in his look of disbelief, Takato scratched the back of his head.
"Sorry, he needed you awake too."
Kazu took off his visor and wiped his forehead.
"Who needed me awake again?"
The visor wearing teenager froze as he slowly turned his head toward the voice. Purple colored robe with pink trim? Check. Dog tags? Check. Disposition of a disappointed parent? Check. Conclusion? Assume recovery mode of situation.
"Gennai! I'm so sorry! I got chopped to the back. Please, sir! I was taking this seriously."
Kazu felt a poke to the back of his skull, and he lifted his sight to see Kenta with an irked expression.
"You mean we, Kazu."
Kazu blushed as he rubbed the back of his head sheepishly.
"Yeah, that's what I mean. Hehe…"
"Sh, Guardromon! Kenta doesn't need to know."
Gennai didn't choose to comment as he turned to the rest of the group.
"Now that Kazu and Kenta are awake, we can begin this meeting."
Takato raised a hand.
"Um…Gennai? Why isn't anyone else here? I mean, it's just us seven."
"That is because there is something you need to know and something I need to entrust you all with."
At this point, Ryo spoke.
"So you're saying we're going to learn just how this rabbit hole goes?"
Gennai paused a moment.
"In a manner of speaking… yes. Yes you are. Now come, we have much to discuss."
With that, Ryo, Henry, Kenta, and Rika all took out sleeping pills and after swallowing them, went to make their bodies comfortable as the pills took their effect. Kazu tossed Takato and Jeri two extra pills. He smiled as he swallowed his own.
"Thank me later."
With that, Kazu sat down against the wall, and closed his eyes. Jeri turned to Takato, shrugged, and then swallowed hers. Waiting a few moments, twiddling the pill between his fingers, Takato quickly swallowed it and let his body fall gently to the ground.
Waking up, he was greeted by Guilmon's large innocent eyes and the earthen ceiling of Guilmon's shed. Guilmon stood to the side as Takato sat up and shook his head for any imaginary dust that had settled into his hair. Once that was finished, Takato dusted his pants and looked at Guilmon. Without any communication, they both nodded and exited the shed.
As Takato and Guilmon walked towards the center, Rika soon met up with them on a separate road leading from a section of forest. Next to her, an athromorphic yellow fox was standing next to her, wearing purple gloves covering her forearms. Nearly everything about the fox screamed 'I can break you in ten different places, and that's just with my fist.'
"Ruki, your partner… she looks tough."
Rika looked back at Renamon with something akin to pride in her eyes. However, she could only raise an eyebrow at the red dinosaur.
"Well, Gogglehead, your partner…seems to be a perfect match for you."
Takato grinned brightly.
"Well, I do think we get around pretty nicely."
With that, Takato walked on, leaving Rika to talk to Renamon.
"Renamon, are you sure that is the powerful rookie? He's just so…"
Rika actually had to pause a while to think of how to describe Guilmon.
Renamon stared at the two and shook her head.
"Rika, I believe that there is a human expression for that. 'It is always the quiet ones.' Am I right?"
Rika nodded before frowning.
"It's like Kami decided to give most of the power to the idiotic, huh?"
"In the case of Guilmon, I'd believe so."
Takato, Rika, Guilmon, and Renamon soon met the others in the middle of the combined masses. Henry and Terriermon came out of an apartment building. Ryo and a short purple amphibian dragon had come out of a cave. Kazu and what looked to be a round mobile kiln with eyes came out of a mechanic shop. Kenta and what could be compared to a sock puppet with wings came out of a meadow. Jeri and a man lion cross with brown pants and a broadsword held vertically on the back of his hips came out of a small dojo.
Once everyone was in the small clearing, Takato looked around. The others watched in confusion as the google clad teenager scanned all over the spot. Then looking like he had a sudden burst of inspiration, he looked up. He promptly dropped his jaw while the rest looked impassively.
Above them, was a blue serpentine dragon whose body was made up of lightning occupied the space above. Chains adorned and wrapped themselves around the body, while five pairs of wings, each smaller than the last, had attached themselves to the spine. Its front and back pairs of legs had three blue orbs attached to the ankles while two orbs made for a pair of middle legs. Finally the mask was blue with yellow streaks all around it, with a blue horn made out of crystal and a huge mustache and beard that Takato couldn't help but find a little funny.
Yet he didn't give voice to his laughter as the bows from the other teenagers told him that this digimon probably didn't take too kindly to ridicule. But as he bowed, he looked up and saw Gennai on the dragon's head. This obviously meant that this dragon was Azulongmon, former sovereign of the eastern quadrant of the digital world and current partner to one Gennai Hiraga.
However, staying true to his character, Guilmon just looked up and pointed.
"Oh… Who is he?"
Several pairs of eyeballs looked at him strangely. Azulongmon decided to give the red saurian an answer.
"You may call me Azulongmon, young one."
Once everyone finished and stood back up, Takato scratched his head.
"So…why exactly have you called us?"
Another voice interrupted the conversation. Everyone turned around to see Natsu wearing a white sundress with a neutral expression. However, everyone was drawn to what was chained to her wrist. Everyone paused for a minute to look, until Rika spoke up.
"Okay, what is that?"
The thing in question looked like a plushie. Its compound black eyes shined with an innocence that rivaled Guilmon's while its mouth could make a cartoon character green with envy. Six flaps decorated the top and bottom of its head while a tail of sort protruded from the back of the head and twisted up. Its arms looked like tattered shirt sleeves with three fingers, while its body and feet looked like a penguin. To finish the look, in the middle of its face and body were five purple dots, while on its ribs were curved Vs.
While everyone was satisfied to just look at the strange creature, Guilmon wanted to look at it more a little closely. Taking a few tentative steps towards the plushie, he raised his nose and began to sniff at the creature. It began to giggle as the current of air that Guilmon's nose was creating made it feel all ticklish. Still giggling, it playfully pushed Guilmon away as it flew away. The Saurian simply stared until he got a big grin on his face as he began to chase the strange creature in an impromptu game of tag.
Azulongmon watched in amusement as the others watched with raised eyebrows. Then he cleared his throat to gain the attention of the remaining people.
"That," he pointed to the creature, "is what the kidnappers were after."
Question marks littered the area until Henry decided to speak up.
"So… why would they want to risk their lives? What exactly can that… whatever it is do?"
Azulongmon sighed before deciding to expand on the subject.
"That thing is called a digignome. And what it can do is the power of wish fulfillment."
Nearly everyone looked with disbelief written on their eyes. However, Takato, Natsu, Jeri, Kazu, Kenta and their partners suddenly had thoughtful looks on their eyes. Guilmon, on the other hand, looked at the digignome strangely, and then a metaphorical light bulb went off in his head.
Guilmon mentioned for the digignome to come close and whispered something into its ear. Smiling and nodding, it began to fly around in the sky, spreading sparkles that floated down. Eventually the clear blue sky overhead turned into ominous black clouds and something began to fall from the clouds.
Takato held out his hands and caught something. Bringing up to his face, his eyes widened.
Ryo had actually taken a bite out of the bread. He was now mentioning to Guilmon.
"Don't know what you used, but this is pretty good."
Stuffing the piece of bread into Ryo's mouth, making him gag, Rika looked up at Azulongmon.
"So that is what they wanted? What for?"
Azulongmon looked like he wanted to stroke his beard though due to his short arms.
"We are not exactly sure, we can be sure that whatever they have planned could not be good, especially considering those people had made an attempt to kidnap instead of trying for a compromise."
Kazu then waved his hands around and shaking his head in an incredulous manner.
"Wait a minute, when you say they, are you saying there is more people like those guys?"
Azulongmon gravely nodded.
"I fear that this was done with some others…I feel they wouldn't feel that comfortable trying to sneak into a city filled with possibly hostile locals…Even more so, this sort of knowledge isn't privy to the typical partner so that they have some superiors that know about them."
Everyone had to nod at that sort of logic. Kenta then summoned up his nearly non-existent courage to ask Azulongmon.
"So I'm guessing you called us because of her and…" Kenta looked at the Digignome, who noticed him and waved back. Kenta breathed. "…him? Is that right, Natsu?"
The digignome floated next to Natsu's ear and spoke. After a while, Natsu nodded and the digignome went back to playing with Guilmon. Natsu turned to Kenta.
"He said that if that's the way you wish to look at it."
Kenta nodded, then turned a little red at the implications. Azulongmon sensed that Kenta was done and gave his answer.
"Yes, I fear that soon they will target who else they feel have a digignome for a partner. And if they were this brave in trying to kidnap Natsu, then they would endanger the secrecy of our population, and the consequences would far outweigh the rewards these people are striving for. I have called all sectors to look out for anything that could reveal the presence of a digignome. This is why I have called you here. Natsu will need an escort to accompany her to an area we believe has a digignome. We have called on you because our resources are very stretched and that you were all we could spare."
Renamon looked away with a frown in her eye.
"Good to see we are the last resort."
Azulongmon ignored the critical statement and continued on.
"Due to your performance, we trust that Natsu shall be in good during her trip. In two days, you shall leave on your quest. Good luck."
Azulongmon turned to look at Henry, who had his hand raised.
"Are you essentially saying there are more digignomes?"
Azulongmon looked down at the chinese teenager.
"Yes, there are more, and what I truly fear is that the more digignomes are used in unison, the greater the magnitude of wishes could be made."
Everyone gulped just thinking about the implications, when the clearing disappeared and everyone was back in the room. Silence reigned over the group until Henry spoke up.
"Is that all?"
Gennai frowned at Henry's near apathetic attitude, but still nodded in comfirmation. Henry nodded in response and exited the building. One by one, the group left to reflect on this news. Soon only Takato and Jeri were left. Before they left, though, Takato looked back at Gennai. Gennai stared back at Takato. The stare lasted for a few seconds before Jeri shook Takato's arm. The teenager looked back at Gennai, then smiled. Both he and Jeri then walked out.
Gennai sat there for a while, until a click could be heard. Turning around, he saw a blond haired man with a pressed black suit and black sunglasses flipping open and close a lighter. Gennai sighed.
"Yamaki, what a pleasant surprise. Tell me, what is the meaning of this visit?"
Yamaki silently closed the lighter and sat down next to Gennai.
"Are you sure?"
Gennai established eye contact with Yamaki and raised a gray eyebrow.
"Am I sure about what?"
Yamaki took off his sunglasses, which by then Gennai began to sigh. Yamaki rarely takes off his sunglasses. When he takes them off, it can be assured that whatever Yamaki does, he means it.
"Are you and Azulongmon sure about also sending him along too?"
Gennai then had to repress a sigh.
"Yamaki, you and Zhuqiaomon have too little faith."
Yamaki glared at Gennai.
"If that is so, then you and Azulongmon have too much."
The blond haired man began to flick the lid off and on.
"I mean, do you know just who that boy has for a partner? Do you remember what happened two years ago…"
"Yamaki, please remind yourself and Zhuqiaomon that he and him are two completely different people. And furthermore we cannot hold the sins of the past over his head."
Yamaki stared blankly at Gennai before sighing and getting up. He then gave a level gaze at Gennai.
"Alright, for now, me and Zhuqiaomon trust you, but let me remind you, I have forgiven that boy and his partner. What I can forgive is that they gave us the situation that we managed to cover up just by the skin of our teeth. Call it cynicism, or pessimism, but that boy and his partner is a walking liability."
With that, Yamaki himself left, leaving Gennai sitting alone.
A purple haired man wearing glasses in his mid 20s finished tying a bandage around Ken's forehead. He sighed, before leaning back and reaching a hand behind him.
"Sora, hand a flashlight, please."
"Here you go, Joe."
"Thank you, Sora."
Once Joe felt the familiar weight of a flashlight, he then flicked it on and looked at Ken's eye with it.
"So… just how bad is it Joe?"
Joe looked at the much more noticeably purple haired 19 year old girl with huge lensed glasses. He then sat down and pinched the bridge of his nose. Glancing down, he saw the worried look on Ken's eye.
"Well, that last attack gave you a bit of a concussion. Had it been a little a little lower, it would broken your nose."
Yolei officially went into over protective girlfriend mode.
"When I get my hands on that punk, I'm busting his face in!"
"Get in line, I got dibs on breaking his nose." Davis dryly remarked carrying Kari in with a blond haired blue eyed 19 year old guy. Yolei turned around and promptly raised an eyebrow.
"That's why it took you guys so long?"
Davis smiled and T.K. shrugged.
"Well, first number one had to ask how the mission went, and then we had to spend some time trying to get Kari comfortable."
"I'm serious, guys! I'm fine!"
Both Davis and T.K. took on hurt looks.
"Come Kari, can't I be the concerned surrogate brother, and T.K. the overly concerned boyfriend."
T.K. raised an eyebrow.
"Overly concerned? You're the one who was insisting on carrying her."
Davis stuck out his tongue.
"You're just jealous that you can't express your concern this well."
Everyone in the room could only sigh at Daisuke's antics. However, it all stopped when there was a noticeable clearing of the throat. Looking towards the doorway, there stood a hooded man, hands in his pockets. His demeanor obviously gave away his impatience and reluctance for being here.
"We have been called to assemble in the meeting room. All fourteen members are required to meet in ten minutes…That is all."
With that, he walked away. The other people looked at each other, before Davis spoke up.
"…Think it's something important?"
The person sitting above the rest looked down at every last seat. Seeing that they were all seated, he cleared his throat.
"Now that everyone is here, I'd like you know about the recent attempt to rescue one of the avatars from a stronghold. As the conditions of the two chosen have shown as well as a missing avatar, the mission could be chalked up as a failure."
Two specific members squirmed under this apparent criticism.
"I, however, personally choose to see it as an opportunity."
Most of those present let out a breath they had subconsciously been holding.
"And so I offer you this warning, if anyone sees a boy of 15 with goggles that look remarkably like Davis' old ones, use lethal force."
The room had gone deadly silent, and he let this information sink in, before he explained.
"If my suspicions are correct, then that boy has a power that could threaten the safety of the world, so we cannot afford to take chances. Do I make myself clear?"
Silence reigned until most of the members bowed their heads in agreement. The man on top nodded his head.
Author's note: Most is in the context.