A/N: I didn't expect to begin working on Into the Darkness so quickly, but I've had these ideas for some time, which made finishing Swiftly Burning Ice very difficult for me. Things may not make sense at the moment, but they will, given time. And the rest of the Tamers will appear in the next chapter, so don't worry. I hope you enjoy this (short) chapter.

Disclaimer: Digimon is the property of Toei Animation and of Bandai.

Into the Darkness-The Demon Saga Part I

By Frozen Phoenix

In a separate world made of dreams and data, they gathered. The blue dragon, whose massive form filled the sky, the flaming Phoenix, with wings that, scorched the lands below it. Drops of rain fell from the warm breath of the iron-helmed tiger and plants seemed to bloom beneath the body of the two-headed turtle.

They bore many names, Eastern, Southern, Western and Northern Sovereign, Holy Beasts. But their true names were Qinglongmon, Zhuqiaomon, Baihumon and Xuanwumon. They were Digimon, the rulers and protectors of the Digital World.

The Digital World had been created by humanity and nearly destroyed as such. It had only been through the Holy Beasts efforts, combined with those of humans who were partnered with Digimon that had saved the Digital World and the Real World from certain ruination.

And now, months after that historic battle, both worlds were facing a threat more precarious than ever imagined.

"So, it's actually happening." Zhuqiaomon spoke fiercely. "After all of this time, he has returned."

"And bringing his sadistic lieutenants with him." Baihumon replied. "Destroying two of them in the last battle was one of the most satisfying events I've ever been a part of."

One of Xuanwumon's heads snorted. "And to think, when a Digimon is deleted, it's supposed to be forever." The other head nodded. "And yet they've returned to plague the Digital World with their evil."

With a rattle of chains, Qinglongmon shifted. "And sealing away their master wasn't enough. Even the four of us didn't have the power to defeat him, not completely."

"I wonder if even those humans would stand a chance against him." Xuanwumon's left head mused.

At the mention of the word, Zhuqiaomon's eyes narrowed and flames seem to leap from his body.

"Those humans." He hissed, with loathing thick in his voice. "Would be useless against him. If even we failed to destroy Demon, why would they make any difference?"

"The strength that they possess is incredible." Qinglongmon argued. "We could not have eliminated the D-Reaper without their aide, perhaps requesting their assistance would not be such a terrible act."

"It would be foolish at best!" Zhuqiaomon roared. "How quickly you forget, Qinglongmon, the damage done to our world by these humans. They stripped me of my most worthy servants and massacred hundreds of Digimon in an instant. Surely you remember hearing the screams of the innocent as their bodies were torn into shreds of data!"

"I have forgotten nothing!" Bellowed Qinglongmon, his patience beginning to dissipate.

"But it is you who is allowing your hatred to cloud your judgment!"

Baihumon snarled loudly, capturing the attention of the two feuding Beasts.

"This arguing amongst ourselves only wastes time! And with so much at stake, the Second and the First are still missing; two of Demon's enforcers entering the world of humans and the home of the Third, time is truly of the essence! Or perhaps you, Zhuqiaomon, would enjoy being set aflame and then torn to pieces, as so many Digimon have suffered at the hands of our enemies."

"Baihumon is right." Xuanwumon's second head added. "If we don't find the First and Second, and make sure that the Third is protected, all our efforts will be for nothing."

"Getting help from the humans will be the least of our worries," The first head continued. "Especially if we're all dead before we can agree on it."

Heaving a great sight, Qinglongmon finally nodded. "You're both correct. We can put the matter of the humans aside, for now," He gave a Zhuqiaomon a cold glare. "And focus upon locating the Second and the First. For it is through their power that the darkness will be vanquished, by the rays of holiest light."

"And if we fail," Baihumon uttered stoically, "Then it will not be only the our world that faces a horrific fate, but all of them."