A Bigger Threat:
Episode 14:
"A Future Wide Open"

By: Shmeilia Rockie

*A/N Okay, here's the last chapter. But don't be sad, my friends, I am attempting another 'Season' of my 'show'! It's going extremely slow, though, so it might be a while. Tankies to all that have read this far, for keeping an open mind. Especially thanks to Ken's Luver, (my biggest fan, who's been anxiously awaiting this chapter for a very long time) and Falconess, (my bestest, best friend in the whole wide world) for reviewing my every chapter. Maybe soon I'll post that first episode of the next season. I dunno. I'm not satisfied with it. Anyway, enjoy the last episode of 'A Bigger Threat'.*



The gentle breeze blew softly over the newly restored Digital World, whispering a pleasant babble to the Freedom Spirits as a reassurance of the perfect future. Still, something lingered in the air, building tension. The others couldn't sense it. Their eyes half-closed in united laziness. Willis looked at Michael questioningly, wondering if he felt it too, but the other remained silent. His cold eyes stared in the direction of the ruins of the Dark Castle with appearant disgust.

"At least THEY won't be coming back," Michael muttered.

"The Dark Digidestined?" Willis couldn't help whispering, the air felt so heavy. Sleepy, even.

"Filthy demons." He gripped his staff tighter, regretting not being able to do more.

The wind blew with unexpected force and a hot white light burst from a spot directly in front of them. POP! The Megadigidestined appeared out of thin air and landed with a hard thud.

The tension shattered, Michael let out a very uncharacteristic yelp and flew sideways into Willis who also screamed like a little kid.

Then they noticed Ken staring angrly and sweatdropped. They quickly regained their composure before any of the Megadigidestined noticed.

Ken-the-Key/Freedom Spirit was not amused. "How dare you let your gaurds fall asleep."

With a weary glance, they discovered the others had indeed fallen asleep with wings folded around them like blankets.

"Up!" The Key clapped his hands once and the Freedom Spirits snorted awake. He turned his furious gaze back to Michael and Willis. "You do NOT deserve this position."

Realizing where this was going, Cody chose that time to pose the question everyone was dying to ask, but didn't dare: "So is it over?"

The Key sighed reluctantly, "No, I'm afraid it's only just begun. Much more must happen before we can acheive Paradise."

His eyes fell to Davis, who looked horribly sick in the arms of Kindness. A shadow had fallen over his green face; he looked quite dead, spare his weak, shallow breathing. "Poor Friend, they cursed him before I could stop them. He'll suffer for the rest of his life."

Yolei stood up and touched Davis's cold forehead. "Isn't there anything we can do?"

The Key shook his head and laid Davis gently on the ground. "No, he must remain this way. It's necessary for future events. He must suffer. He must." It seemed he was trying to reassure himself as much as everyone else. "I would...But this is just how it must be."

"We didn't expect to see you again, Megadigidestined," Willis said in Kari's direction. She smiled. "See, we don't know everything."

"Hey, I hate to interrupt," Matt interrupted. He shook Lust so she yelped in fear, "but should we do with her?"

Michael almost spit out a nasty comment, but the Key spoke first, "Let her go. She too has a part in the future."

Matt shrugged and relased her. She scampered like a frightened rabbit into the woods.

They watched her flight until the darkness of the forest consumed her completely. Then the Key turned to Matt, Tai, Sora, Izzy, and Joe. Their Digimon sat panting at their feet. He motioned to them and spoke, "The time of parting has come, my friends. Say your good-byes; you won't see them again until the very end."

They took a private moment with their Digimon, then reluctantly stood up. Matt preoccupied himself with brushing some dirt off his cape, Tai suddenly decided he needed to smooth out his hair, Sora pushed some dirt around with the toe of her boot. Izzy, Mimi and Joe waited quietly for orders.

"Hold your Digivices over the Digimon." They did exactly that. The Key waved his staff and the Digimon broke into a million pieces and became absorbed by the Digidestined. Just like that, they were gone. "Now we can go home, but keep an eye out for Keesma's demons. They've invaded the Real World too."

"Wait," Cody frowned. "I thought you already destroyed her demon army."

The Key shook his head distractedly, then turned to Micheal and Willis and dropped his staff at their feet. They looked questioningly at him. "I'm afraid I must give up the Power Orb. It gives too much power for one person to handle. It's corrupting me. Would you take care of it for me until the time has come for me to..." He trailed off, looking apologeticalliy at them.

They glanced nervously at each other, communicating telepathically.

"Sure," Willis finally said, smiling. "We understand. And we will protect it with our souls."

The Key held out his hands and the Power Orb materialized in a burst of dazzling white light that made everyone gasp. His armor turned back into regular Megadigidestined gear. His wings faded away, and he landed gently on his feet. Painfully, he shut his eyes and pulled his hands away. The Orb floated to the two Freedom Spirits, who made it disappear between them. After a moment of complete silence, he fell to one knee and let out a choking sob. He'd given up something very dear to him.

The sickle on the grass disappeared in a puff of glitter.

"May the Powers be with you, always," Micheal told them. With a wave of their staffs, the Megadigidestined teleported to the Real World.

* * * *

June answered the door and was greeted by a gigantic mound of roses. She stepped back starlted, sweatdropping. "C-Can I help you?"

A pair of blue eyes popped over the top of the bouquet. "Hello June!"

"Matt? Is that you?"

"Yeah. June, I just-"

She didn't even let him finish thinking, before yanking him inside. "Oh, I was so worried when you disappeared! Are you okay?"

Matt lowered the bouquet so she could see the rest of his face. "I just wanted to appologize for doing that. The Digital World needed me."

She looked at her socks and wiggled her toes self-consiously. "Oh, I-I wondered about that. Have you seen my brother lately? Was he there too?"

Davis stumbled in the door looking quite literaly half-dead. He raised his hand and croaked, "Yeah, here I am." Then fell flat on the carpet.

June yelped and quickly helped him to his feet. "Oh, my goodness, Davis! What happened to you?"

"I don't wanna talk about it," Davis slurred. "I just want to go to bed."

He shook her off and found his way to his room. After smacking into the doorframe, he slammed the door shut and collapsed on his bed. He sighed heavily and lost conciousness.

June stared in a terrified silence at his door. Was that the same perky brother who asked her to pass the jelly at breakfast? This boy seemed more like a zombie.

"He's had it rough," Matt whispered, his voice soft with compasion. That one weak moment would cost Davis for the rest of his life. She turned abruptly and stared at him demandingly. How did he get the job of telling June the brother she knew was dead? He fidgeted with the bouquet before asking, "Could I get a vase for these?"

She ran into the kitchen and chucked a large glass at him impatiently. "Now talk!"

* * * *

The state Davis lay in was not sleep. He left his body behind and crossed over into the shadow-realm that was his mind. It always existed as a theoretically physical place, but he'd never been there. He'd never been so in tune with himself before.

Fog surrounded him completely, pressing in on him. He felt small and alone, not to mention completely frightened out of his wit. Things unseen frolicked in the darkness beyond the fog, laughing not so innocently. Davis did the only thing he could think of; he called out for help. "Raidramon, I need you!"

His voice echoed in the vast space and died to silence. He whimpered hopelessly.

Then just as he sat down hard on a near-by rock, he heard a gruff voice that made him cry with relief, "Don't worry, Davis, I'm here! I'm just a little preoccupied at the moment." Several loud thumps resounded through the thick air and the familiar form of his Digimon partner trotted up to him, an affectionate but enormously overgrown puppy. He smiled, "I've been fighting them off, sorry it took so long."

Davis rubbed Raidramon's muzzle. "Fighting what off?"

"The Dark Digidestined: Fear, Chaos and Apathy. At least, their essences. Their...They're demons, you know. They wish to possess you, but they're only recordings of the demons, not actually the real things. They can only influence you, not take over, thanks to those chains around your neck."

"And you're stuck fighting them off for me until I die?"

Raidramon shook his head, a longing look twinkling in his eyes. "Until the coming of Paradise, which might actually be...a little while after you die."

Davis's eyes glazed over, "I'm not going to live very long this way, am I? I can feel my strength ebbing away as we speak."

"You'll only live half as long as you would have with both crests. You probably won't servive to your fortith birthday."

That was considerabley longer than he expected, but still managed to frighten him to the core. He swallowed hard, "Y-you mean I'll be this way for twenty-six more years?"

"More or less, yes. But it will only get worse, I'm sorry to tell you. My strength will deminish as yours does, and it will become harder for me to fight them."

What could he say to that?

Raidramon continued, "And no amount of medicine or scientific...stuff...will be able to put you out of your misery, either. Although you'll probably see enough doctors for five people, they won't be able to cure you because you're not really sick. You're just incomplete. It's a spiritual problem...You should probably go to church more often, you know, give yourself something to hang onto. Just don't become obsessed with it, that's a common symptom of sch-Nevermind."

At that moment something slimey flew out of the fog onto Davis's head, digging claws into his eyes and ears. Before he had time to respond in any way, he snapped awake.

* * * *

Halloween Special Commercial Break!

It's Halloween and Matt's handing out candy. The doorbell rings and he opens the door. Fourteen hotdogs (really the Digimon and Garz and Zarg) hold out bags and yell "Trick-or-Treat!" Matt screams and quickly slams the door shut.

Matt (looks nervously around the room): I did NOT just see that!

He opens the door and they repeat "Trick-or-Treat!" He drops the bowl of candy and starts digging in his pockets.
Matt: Gum, gum! I NEED the GUM!

Gabumon: Woah, chill, Matt, it's just us!

Agumon: Yeah, lighten up!

Matt (With scary cat eyes and steam coming out of his ears): Okay, who put you up to this!? Was it Tai?!

Garz and Zarg raise their hands.
Garz: Actually, it was our idea.
Zarg: Yeah, nice joke, huh? We sure got you good!

Matt: That does it! I can't take anymore of these STUPID HOT DOG JOKES!
(Matt chases Garz and Zarg down the hallway and out of sight, screaming a war-cry. The Digimon stare after them with wide eyes. They blink in unison)

Gomamon: Wow! Hey, guys, look at all this candy Matt dropped!

They shovel candy in their bags and skip away happily, humming the Digimon theme song.

* * * *

Little blue balls of light hovered in front of Davis's eyes, spinning wildly, shooting off sparks. He rubbed his eyes madly, but they didn't go away for a few minutes. "What was that?" he croaked.

Surprisingly, a voice answered back. "It was me, you blue dog, you. Welcome to the world of 'You're Mentally Insane'. I'll be your tourguide for today..."

"Who are you?" He demanded in a whisper.

"Your great-aunt, thirice removed. Duh, who do you think?"

"Well, I don't know, that's why I-"

"CHAOS!" the voice boomed, filling his mind, interrupting all intelligent thoughts. He flinched and threw up his arms in defense against this invisible thing.

Then, silence. He could feel it there still, sitting on his head. It said no more to him, so he got up and wobbled into the bathroom.

When he looked into the mirror, he could barely belive that poor person was actually himself. He'd changed as much on the outside as on the inside; the emptiness screamed in his eyes, the pain etched on his face in an almost permentant grimace. He looked so thin, so pale. How could he explain to anyone the loss of twenty pounds in two days? He had school the next day, didn't he? What day was it? He seemed to have lost all track of time.

Suddenly, he realized he'd stared at himself for over an hour, lost in whirling, unconnected thoughts. He shuddered and dared to venture out into the living room. June was on the phone, his parents nowhere in sight. He lingered in the doorway, confused. He searched hard for his voice before asking, "W-what time is it?"

His sister quickly ended her conversation and smiled fakely, "It's about time you got up, you've slept all day."

He bit his lip and gripped the doorframe, panic overwhelming him. "I missed school?!"

Upon seeing her little brother about to have a panic attack, June swooped him in a bear-hug. "It's okay, I told Mom and Dad you weren't feeling well and they called you in sick!" She released him but forced him to look into her eyes. "Matt told me what happened."

He winced and tried to shrink away, but her hand firmly gripped his shoulder. He couldn't tell by her tone what she thought of his actions, but he felt as though she'd hit him. He looked down and away, whimpering, "I'm so sorry."

She gently fluffed his untamed hair. Tears glittered in her eyes as she whispered, "There's nothing you could have done."

"I could have let her kill me!" He exploded, breaking free of her grasp. "That would have been the honorable thing to do. But NO! I am a coward. I sold part of my soul so I could exist just that much longer. But what kind of existance is this? I'm only half a person!"

June hesitated, "Wether you realize it or not, a lot of people care about you. They would be very sad if you died, especially all alone in the Digital World."

His eyes glazed over again in the effort of recalling the moment, "But I hurt my friends. They'll never forgive me."

"They already have, Davis."

He slowly shook his head. "TK and Kari never will."

"Yeah, well that's their loss, then. You are a wonderful person. Even though sometimes (and I say this lovingly) you were a jerk, you understand now. You've come so far in this short amount of time, and...I'm proud. I'm sorry it cost you so much to grow up, but...Isn't this better? You know the world. Your illusion is gone, this is who you really are. You can see things clearly, can't you?"

That sounded unbelievingly cold. She didn't understand either. After a long akward pause, he grabbed a jacket and slung it over his shoulder. "Yeah, all too clearly. I'm going out for a walk. I need some fresh air to fill my empty head."

She didn't object as he slammed the door in her face. She stared at it for a soild minute, then swiftly hit redial. "Matt? He's worse than I thought."

* * * *

Davis was still in his dirty clothes from the day before. If he had been in pajamas, he wouldn't have cared less. He picked a random direction. Where he was going, he didn't really care.

He found himself at a playground. He stared unthinkingly at it for a while before collapsing in a swing. There were no children; the place looked abandoned and forgotten. The setting sun turned the sky orange, and purple was decending rapidly. A cool wind brushed the hair away from his face and his eyes filled with tears. It seemed so peaceful, so nice. He wrapped his arms around himself and sobbed.

"So I'm not the only one who comes here to think," a voice from behind him called softly.

Davis's eyes snapped open. "Ken?"

Ken sat down next to him, but didn't say anything.

"Nice hair," Davis said as lightly as he could given he felt like crap.

Ken's hand went to the tangled mess atop his head. "Thanks, I call it the Digimon Emperor look. Doesn't really suit me anymore, but I couldn't comb it out. It'll go away after a while, I hope."

Davis snorted and hastily whipped the tears from his eyes. "You sound like how I feel."

"Weak? Tired? Frustrated?"

"That would be choice D, all of the above."

"Uh-huh."

There was a long, akward pause.

"So, uh," Davis started, "What brings you here?"

"I come here to think sometimes, and you?"

"I don't know. I needed to get out, and ended up here."

"Ah, I know how that goes." Another pause. Ken looked up into the rapidly darkening sky and sighed. "I never thought I could become corrupted by the forces of good. That's something that never happens on TV."

"You didn't-"

"Oh, but I came close. I had the power to do anything I wanted! You can't imagine how tempting that was. I felt like a god, or something dangerous like that. Now I've swung both directions. It basically comes down to how the power is handled that separates the evil from the holy. I could have become so much worse than when I was the Emperor. I could have been worse than Keesma." He shuttered at the thought. "I'm glad I gave it up, but it wasn't easy. It's the hardest thing I've ever done, hands down."

Davis looked at him with nothing but total respect. "I couldn't have done it."

"YOU don't give yourself enough credit."

"But...I couldn't even die honorably when I had the chance. I took the coward's way out."

"You can't dwell on one bad moment for the rest of your life. You can make things better."

Davis opened his mouth to say something else, but he never got it out because suddenly...

*Flash*

"Oh no!"

"What?" Then Ken felt the flash too. He put a hand to the side of his head. "Demons?...And they're not far away."

They tore out of there, guided by their new demon-finding instinct. Davis felt a sicking chill come over him. "I think we're headed towards my home!"

And to his dread, they were. He threw open the unlocked door, prepared to find the nasty demons murdering his sister. However, the apartment was calm and quiet.

It was also empty. "June?"

Nothing.

Ken looked inside. "Where are your parents?"

"They have social lives, Ken. I'm sorry if that shocks you." Then he winced, "Sorry."

*Flash*

They stared at each other.

"Let's go."

"Right."

Back out into the street. "Do you think your sister went on a walk?"

"At night? By herself? It must have been pretty important."

* * * *

Matt ran a hand nervously through his hair and checked his watch. "How long does it take for her to get over here? I knew I should have picked her up."

He paused and laughed at himself. "How long have I felt this way? What? Two days? This is insane! It feels so normal."

*Flash*

He gasped, somehow knowing exactly what had happened. "I definately should have picked her up."

He didn't even bother scribbling a note for his dad (who was working late, of course). Matt knew he would understand.

* * * *

June nervously wrapped her arms around herself and shuddered. She shouldn't have panicked like that. But she worried about her brother. Now a dense fog surrounded her, confusing her sense of direction. It gave her the creeps.

"Well, well, well," an inhuman voice called, making her jump. A tough-looking group of teenagers emerged from the mist. Their eyes glowed red. "Look, it's a girl. And it appears she's all alone!"

"How unfortunate! What should we do with her?"

"Isn't it obvious? Get her!"

As they backed her into the wall, a figure leapt out of the fog to protect her. "Oh no you don't!"

"Matt?"

"Stay back!" Matt warned.

"What are you going to do to us, pretty-boy?"

He blasted the leader with an icy blast, freezing him to the spot. The others looked outraged, but not at all surprised. "He's one of them! He's a Protector!"

Suddenly, twelve hideous monsters erupted from the teenagers.

June screamed. Not far off Davis and Ken heard her.

"Morph Digivolve!" Matt transformed into Garurumon and growled a warning.

"Charge!"

Matt fought with all his might, but there were just too many of them.

Ken and Davis rounded the corner to find him beatten. "Protect June!" He huffed.

"I'll carry her to saftey. You help fight them off. Morph Digivolve!" Ken transformed into Stingmon and scooped up June. She fainted as he flew away.

One of the demons spotted Davis watching Ken fly off. "He's the weak one. Let's take him out!"

They rushed at him. He opened his mouth to Morph Digivolve, but the thing in his head yelled, "Oh, no you don't!"

He blinked, and found himself at school. He looked around and spotted himself at a locker. This was an healthier, happier Davis. He looked to be about 18, a Senior. Obviously, judging by the jersey, he was on the soccer team, about to play a game. Everyone who walked by wished him luck, and he thanked every person with a charming smile. After about twelve seconds of watching this bizare scene, a girl trotted up behind him and gave him a surprise hug. This girl wasn't Kari, but she looked familiar. In fact, he realized, she was Chaos. Hoping they couldn't see him, he got closer. Closer than he wanted, because Chaos kissed the other Davis. He felt empty inside watching them, longing to be that happy.

He turned to leave, and found himself in a church. The pews were full of family and friends. White candles and flowers decorated everything, light organ music played. With a wave of sickening dread, he realized he was watching his own wedding. To her. Oh, she looked beautiful coming down the isle...So much more beautiful than Kari could ever be. He groaned and hid his eyes in shame. Chaos, the REAL Chaos, laughed inside his head. "This is what you would have had if things had played out differently, Friend. She was your soul-mate!"

With a jerk, he woke up.

"What? What's wrong?" Amy asked.

He stared at his wife for a moment and laughed as the truth dawned on him. "A dream. I had a nightmare!"

"What happened in it? The way you screamed, I thought the house was on fire, or...something."

He took a deep breath and released it with relief. He felt as if a giant weight had been lifted from him. "You were in it."

"Yeah?"

"Yeah. You were possessed by the embodiment of Ch-"

*Snap* Davis blinked and found himself in cold reality.

"Stop!" Matt growled, "The battle's over."

Though he had no memory of it, he'd Morph Digivolved. Twelve teens lay fallen and beatten around him. He tasted blood.

He hung his great wolf's head, greif once again gripping his heart. He had truely felt free for one glorious moment. The memory of it taunted him. "What happened?"

"You don't remember?"

"Ugh...no." He couldn't explain. He could barely talk.

"You went crazy. Took 'em all out practically single-handedly. Ken came back at the last minute and drove the demons out of them. I'm surprised you didn't kill them."

He looked from Matt to Ken. Neither one had de-Digivolved, probably to keep him in check. "Where's June?"

"Here I am!" June ran out of the shadows and flung her arms around his neck, not caring he was still a giant wolf. "I was so worried!"

Davis de-Digivolved, fell to his knees and broke down in tears. "I'm sorry I worried you! I wasn't thinking."

She cried too. "I wasn't either!"

"I'm just glad you're okay!"

Matt de-Digivolved and sighed, brushing the dirt off his pants. "I have a feeling this sorta thing will be common-place from now on."

June gasped. "Are you still thinking about going to go to America now that all this has happened?"

He winced, "I think they need me more than anything. All the American Digidestined are in the Digital World; the country is helpless. There's Mimi, but she's in New York. I would secure the other coast. I-I have a feeling it's the will of the Powers for me to be there."

Ken shook his head as he also de-Digivolved. "Oh, boy. Won't this just be fun? I'm personally longing for Paradise, how 'bout you guys?"




*End of Season 1*