"Better An Egg Than An Eggshell"
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"I can't believe it. We're actually here." Takuya sighed.
"My legs can believe it." JP groaned.
The group had finally made it to the Forest Terminal, though the area was covered in fog, making it difficult to see anything other than the tracks.
"There's the sign. Forest Terminal." Takuya pointed it out.
"Um, but shouldn't there be a Trailmon here?" Koji asked.
"Yeah, really." Zoe said.
"Huh? Well, maybe the Trailmon are on their way back right now or, uh, you know, they, uh, could be…Oh, man." Takuya sighed.
"I don't see a Trailmon station here either. All I see is fog, trees and more fog." Dai said.
"Hey, who cares about the Trailmon? There's a restaurant here." JP exclaimed happily as everyone turned to see him and Veemon smiling big with drool dripping from their mouths.
There was indeed a small restaurant behind them and they walked over curiously as they saw a Deramon was at the doorway to greet them.
"Welcome weary travelers." He greeted.
"What do you have to eat?" Tommy asked.
"Ask instead what I don't have to eat. Step right up, friends, and don't worry about money. For you, the first meal is free." Deramon said cheerfully.
"Hey!" JP and Veemon laughed as they ran inside while Zoe, Tommy and Dai chuckled at this.
"Well, there is a man and mon who know what they like or don't care what they eat." Deramon muttered.
Everyone walked inside of the restaurant and sat down at the booth as they watched Deramon prepare them noodles and then held up nine eggs.
"Yolk surprise coming up!" he said as he used his beak to crack them and the yolks fell down onto the noodles.
"Dig on in." the bird smiled at them.
"Hail to the chef." The group laughed as they broke their chopsticks and then began eating.
As they slurped up the noodles, everyone then blanched in disgust at the taste and spat them out.
Their voices overlapped as they pushed the bowls back and folded their hands on their laps or crossed them in Koji's case.
"We must respectfully decline your kind offer of food." Bokomon said.
"I can't feel my tongue anymore." Neemon whined.
"All right, all right. What's the big idea? I just can't believe all of you are going to turn down free food." Deramon frowned.
"That was food?" Zoe asked.
"I'm insulted." Deramon said.
"I'm gonna be sick." Takuya retorted.
"Fine, get out of here, kids, you're bugging me. Go on to the Forest Terminal. They say no one's ever returned from there." Deramon glared.
"Yeah, well, we'll just take our chances. I doubt the forest Terminal can be any worse than this food. Honestly, who would even eat this food?" Takuya asked.
"More please!" Dai and Veemon cheerfully held out their bowls.
"What?" everyone turned to them in shock.
"You actually ate that stuff?" JP asked.
"Yeah, what's wrong with that?" Veemon asked.
"How can you eat that without getting sick?" Zoe asked.
"If you tried my parents' cooking, you'd understand. Compared to that, this is a five star meal." Dai said.
Deramon was beaming happily as he poured more noodles into the duo of Miracles' bowls.
"It's nice to see some of you have manners." He said.
The others all stared in disgust as Veemon and Dai both slurped up the food and Takuya then realized that the girl's parents must have been terrible cooks if she thought this garbage tasted good.
"Come back anytime!" Deramon shook hands with Veemon and Dai as the others stood outside waiting on them.
"Sure, thanks for the meal." The dragon nodded.
"We'll see ya around, Deramon." Dai waved as they walked off.
"Let's go." Koji said as he began leading the group through the fog.
"Okay." Takuya sighed.
"Yeah." Zoe said softly.
"Do you really think it's dangerous?" JP asked.
"I don't know. We've come this far, we can't turn back." Tommy frowned as he started walking.
"Hey, don't leave me! I mean, wait up." JP called.
As they walked, the fog got thicker and it was hard to see, so they made sure they stayed close, Veemon and Takuya holding hands with Dai while Tommy grabbed onto the girl's sweater.
They finally found the Trailmon station and looked around curiously.
"It looks like this place is empty too." Koji remarked.
"Yeah and maybe just a little bit creepy." Zoe quipped.
"Keep your eyes peeled, guys." Takuya said.
"For what? All we can see is fog." JP commented.
They found a giant tree and there was a doorway and they started walking inside, then went up the winding staircase.
"Well, there have to be some people here." Takuya said.
"But what if they're all," JP gulped fearfully.
"Ghosts?" he finished.
Everyone whimpered at that.
"You mean like Phantomon and Bakemon?" Dai asked.
"There are ghost digimon?" Zoe whimpered.
"Of course there are. There are all types of digimon. Angels, demons, sea monsters, you name it." Veemon smiled.
This made the group uneasy while Dai just chuckled softly as she felt Zoe cling to her sweater as they continued walking up the stairs.
Making it to the top, they walked out onto the tree branch that was made as a road to see that there were different paths and fog all around.
"I guess we have no choice but to keep walking." Takuya said.
"Man, this world sure loves it's walking." JP sighed.
"Great, now what?" Takuya asked when they came up to the two different paths.
Tommy's D-Tector then started to beep making him pull it out curiously and saw that a 3-D map appeared and it pointed to the right.
"It's that way." The boy pointed.
Nodding in agreement, the group followed the goggle head as he walked onto the tree branch, going up the stairs.
They soon came to see there were overlapping branches on the path, blocking them off.
"Tommy, it's a dead end." Takuya turned to the boy.
"Yeah, are you sure it wasn't the other way?" Zoe asked.
JP's D-Tector then started to glow as he pulled it out and as he held it up, the branches moved, revealing the rest of the path to the group.
"Nice." Dai commented.
"And for my next trick…" JP grinned.
"Man, I can't see anything in this fog." Takuya growled as they started walking again.
"I know, we could be attacked." Koji frowned.
"Hey, maybe my D-Tector's good for something too." Zoe said as she pulled out her own device.
A bright pink light shone from the D-Tector and it filled the area making the fog fade away, revealing what appeared to be the castle of the Forest Kingdom.
Everyone exclaimed it awe at the crystal castle that reflected rainbow colors off of the towers.
"I hate it when I'm right." Zoe blinked.
"This place is beautiful." Tommy said.
"Doesn't mean it's not dangerous." Koji said, always the careful one.
"What if this is where the person from my D-Tector lives? We did get a message to come here." Tommy reminded as they walked up to the front gates.
"Well, this is where the person from my D-Tector lives. We did get a message to come here." Tommy spoke.
"Well, should I knock?" JP asked as he held a fist up to the door.
"I still don't think it's safe." Koji said.
"You're being paranoid." Veemon commented.
Koji's D-Tector then glowed making him pull it out and the gates opened up, revealing the courtyard made of rainbow colored crystal.
"Well, at least they're polite I guess." Takuya commented.
"Yeah, that or eager to lure us in there." JP frowned.
"I say we go inside. How bad could it be? Sleeping Beauty used to live in a castle in the forest." Zoe held her hand son her hips.
"Yeah, well, so did the Wicked Witch." Koji quipped.
"We'll never find out what's in there if we don't go in." Tommy said as they walked up to the castle doors.
"Yeah, says the kid at the back of the line." JP chuckled dryly.
Takuya used the doorknocker to bang on the door."
"Maybe no one lives here." Tommy looked around.
"Maybe you should open up a wishful thinking store, Tommy." Takuya quipped.
His D-Tector then gave off a red light that opened up the door for the group who all looked inside.
"Get back, Cherubimon scum!" a digimon pointed his staff at the group.
This digimon looked far too much like a Wizardmon, only he wore white while his hair was blonde and his eyes were a brighter shade of blue.
The wand he held was also silver and had a blue snowflake on top.
"Uh, isn't that Wizardmon?" Takuya asked.
"He's a different color." Tommy said.
"And meaner." JP blinked.
"We can take him. Just like we beat Gigasmon." Takuya stared at the digimo determined.
"Gigasmon? But he's one of Cherubimon's goons. So, you're allies with Cherubimon?" the digimon asked.
"Are you kidding?" Zoe sniped.
"Look, why don't you put that wand down, okay? We're all on the same side. Isn't that obvious?" Koji stepped up beside Takuya.
"This is what comes of fighting too much. Everyone seems to be an enemy. I apologize, friends. How did you find this place?" the digimon asked as he dropped his arm to his side.
"We got a message that told us all to come to the Forest Terminal. But there was no one there and when we kept walking, we came up here on your doorstep." Takuya explained.
"Huh. A message? Could it be? My solitude has driven common courtesy from me. I apologize. My name is Sorcerymon. Please, come in. I have something important to show you." he bowed and then walked inside.
Takuya and Koji shared a look before they nodded and the group all followed the sorcerer inside of the castle.
"Where are you taking us anyway?" Koji asked as they walked down the crystal hallways.
"To meet someone." Sorcerymon told him.
"I bet it's a trap." Koji said.
"You think everything's a trap." Tommy told him.
"Caution is wise, friends, but only within reason. This is no trap. This is a prophecy." Sorcerymon stopped in front of a door.
He then pushed them open to reveal a large throne room that revealed an angelic digimon trapped in crystal on the ceiling.
"So where is he?" Takuya asked.
"Up there." Sorcerymon pointed.
"Allow me to introduce our salvation; Seraphimon." He said.
"Um, are we supposed to know who that is?" Zoe asked.
"Seraphimon was one of the three Celestial digimon chosen to rule this world." Sorcerymon explained.
"So, what are we supposed to do? He's all frozen up." Takuya stated.
"Perhaps not for long. There is a prophecy." Sorcerymon reminded.
"Let your light shine as one." Came the woman's voice.
"That was Lady Ophanimon! She's the one who asked me to watch over Seraphimon." Sorcerymon said.
"Ophanimon? She must be the one who asked us to come here." Takuya realized.
"It's all falling into place. I brought you here because the prophecy says that one day a group of wayward humans would free Seraphimon." Sorcerymon told them.
"Typical. Humans get to do everything. When is my turn?" Bokomon crossed his arms and pouted.
"How about next week?" Neemon chirped.
"Be quiet." Bokomon pouted.
"So what did she mean?" Koji asked.
"Hey, I bet it has something to do with our D-Tectors." Zoe said.
"Yeah, that must be it. The digivices always hold the power of light inside of them. They expel darkness." Dai explained.
Beams of light shot out in pillars around the room making the group stare in awe.
"Hey, guys, focus them up there." Takuya said as he moved his D-Tetcor to Seraphimon.
Everyone moved the beams of light to the crystal that trapped the angel and the crystal burst, allowing the golden winged angel to fall down from his prison.
"The prophecy." Sorcerymon gasped as Seraphimon landed on his feet in front of the group.
"Welcome back, Lord Seraphimon." Sorcerymon greeted the armour clad angel.
"It's good to be back my faithful servant. You have done well." Seraphimon praised.
"Sorcerymon, tell me, there's so little I remember." The angel said.
"My Lord, when your defeat seemed imminent, Ophanimon was able to get you to safety. She sealed you away from danger so you could be revived after the trouble had passed." Sorcerymon informed.
"Ophanimon! That's right! Has she been harmed? Why isn't she here?" Seraphimon asked.
"Truth us often unpleasant I'm afraid. No one knows where she is. But these humans have been in contact with her, so all is not lost." Sorcerymon pointed at the six humans.
"These humans? But they're only children." Seraphimon observed.
"Hey!" Dai and Veemon complained.
"Yes, but they're also Legendary Warriors and the child of Miracles. And if not for them, you'd still be stuck to the ceiling." Bokomon defended the humans.
"Legendary Warriors and the child of Miracles? Impressive." Seraphimon mused.
"Hey, listen, just what is going on here? We've been led all over getting our snot kicked out and we don't even know why we were brought into this crazy world!" Takuya glared.
"Yeah, someone owes us some answers." Zoe spoke up.
"And I think you're that someone. So, tell us what's going on." Koji demanded.
"Uh, please?" Tommy asked.
"Very well, brave ones. I shall tell you. If you want answers, you will have them. The story begins long ago when human digimon and beast digimon warred against each other. Their battle laid waste to the Digital World, befouling what was once beautiful. But Lucemon appeared and brought an end to the fighting. For a time he ruled in peace, but soon he was corrupted by his own power." Seraphimon explained.
"My, this story sure sounds familiar." Bokomon said sarcastically.
"Bokomon!" the humans scolded quietly as they hushed him.
"What?" he asked.
"The 10 Legendary Warriors arose to free the oppressed and abused digimon. They battled valiantly and after a fierce struggle, they were able to defeat the tyrannical Lucemon! After peace was restored to the Digital World, champions were chosen to protect that peace. Cherubimon, Ophanimon and myself. But as before, our time of harmony was short lived. Cherubimon wanted to control the Digital World by himself, and so attacked me. You know the rest of the story thanks to Sorcerymon. Ophanimon rescued me and brought me to safety here where I have slumbered and regained my strength until I was awakened by you Legendary Warriors." Seraphimon said.
"Luckily, you came when we needed Seraphimon most. The Digital World is in a crisis as you can see." Sorcerymon lifted his wand.
It glowed as an image of the Digital World appeared and it looked like the planet Earth, only large blackened parts were shown where places had been destroyed.
"Man, the Digital World looks like Swiss cheese." Takuya commented.
"And the future looks even more bleak. You see, Cherubimon has sent his minions to destroy it." Sorcerymon informed.
"This is more serious than I imagined. We must find Ophanimon at once!" Seraphimon declared as the image faded.
"Yes, my Lord. Your combined might could surely defeat Cherubimon. And of course, you'll have my help. While you slept, I felt that I have too and I have dreamt only of fighting at your side against that evil creature." Sorcerymon said.
"Dear, brave Sorcerymon. You are a true friend. Thank you. Your courage gives me strength." Seraphimon nodded.
"I am as you taught me." Sorcerymon said.
"And I must thank you for your courage. All would be lost if not for you." Seraphimon turned to the smiling humans.
"But now that I ask that you do one more favour for me. Before the fighting begins, you must go back to your own world." He told them making the humans gasp.
"What? Have you lost every little iota you have from being frozen?" Dai demanded with her hands on her hips.
The fact that this Mega thought he could just send the Digidestineds away from their duty infuriated her.
"Your task is done and it's too dangerous for you to stay." Seraphimon told them.
"But we're Legendary Warriors." Takuya said.
"Yeah, we can't just walk away now." Zoe told him.
"And we're Digidestineds! It's our job to save the world! Ophanimon called us here for a reason!" Dai stepped up to the Mega.
Looking down into her chocolate eyes, Seraphimon could tell that this was the child of Miracles and saw that she was a very stubborn person.
Her Veemon also seemed set on staying as he crossed his arms as he glared up at the angel, determined.
Just then, one of the walls was shattered by a hammer making everyone turn to see Grumblemon had arrived with three other digimon.
"Good, whole brat brigade here." Grumblemon smirked.
"And ready to fight." Takuya glared.
"You better be 'cause me introduce other digimon who defeat you. Ranamon," Grumblemon spoke.
"Charmed I'm sure." A green skinned water nymph spoke with a southern accent.
"Arbourmon." Grumblemon said.
"You're in for it now, right?" the robotic digimon spoke with a strange accent.
"And lastly, Mercurymon." Grumblemon said.
"So, these be the whelps that's given thee so much trouble. Pathetic." The green metal man with mirrors on his body spoke as though he were stuck in a Shakespeare play.
"They be tougher than look." Grumblemon interjected.
"Therely. It'll be an utter delight to defeat thee and to hand Seraphimon another dropping in Cherubimon's name." Mercurymon smirked.
"With so many options, I don't know where to start." Ranamon waved her hand.
"Enough of your meaningless taunts. Tell me where Ophanimon is NOW!" Seraphimon demanded.
"Me no care about her. Me just want Beast Spirit back. So give it!" Grumblemon yelled.
"Come get it, buddy." Takuya stepped up.
"Yeah!" JP stood beside him.
"Yeah!" Tommy and Koji said.
"Execute: Spirit Evolution!"
"The Legendary Warriors have returned." Sorcerymon said as Zoe backed up beside him.
"If that big doofus hadn't stolen my Spirit, I'd show him a thing or two." Zoe frowned.
"Yeah, well, did and now show you thing or three." Grumblemon said.
"You sure you don't wanna get warmed up first?" Agunimon taunted as he used his Pyro Darts making the Evil Warriors jump away.
"Ooh, he's feisty." Ranamon smirked.
Lobomon then used Howling Laser and shot it at the Warrior of Water.
"You might as well shoot at the floor, sugar." She giggled as she jumped away.
Beetlemon swung his Thunder Fist at Arbourmon, but the Warrior of Wood jumped away laughing.
Kumamon then used Crystal Freeze on Grumblemon who jumped away.
"Thanks for the overwhelmingly, underwhelming lesson on combat. Let me show ya how it's done." Ranamon giggled as she clapped her hand above her head.
A storm cloud appeared and rained down acid water on the five Warriors making them cry out in pain as they fell to the their knees.
Arbourmon then used Roundhouse Punt, kicking Lobomon and then Beetlemon, Kumamon and finally Agunimon, all five being slammed into the wall.
"That was too easy." Ranamon said.
"Right." Arbourmon drawled.
"Go get your Beast Spirit, rock head. Fetch." Ranamon folded her arms behind her back.
"Be careful or you get smashed next Ranamon." Grumblemon lifted his hammer.
"Grumblemon, no! You cannot do this!" Sorcerymon called.
"I beg your pardon?" the Warrior of Metal turned to the sorcerer.
"You cannot lead us down the path of ruin. I have waited a lifetime to see peace restored to the Digital World and you're not going to stop it from returning!" Sorcerymon yelled as he sued his Crystal Barrage.
"Thou art a fool." Mercurymon said as he absorbed the attack into his mirror and shot the attack back at Sorcerymon, destroying his wand as he was hit.
"Sorcerymon!" Seraphimon held his friend.
"Worry not, my Lord." He groaned.
"Have at you!" Mercurymon charged at the duo, but Seraphimon flew them away from the attacking Warrior.
Seraphimon then landed in front of the good Warriros and set Sorcerymon down as he turned to Ranamon, Grumblemon and Arbourmon who looked worried.
The angel then used Strike of the Seven Stars on the three, sending them back.
"Please, I ask again that you return to your world and leave this to me." Seraphimon turned to the Warriors.
"There's no way we'll leave." Kumamon said.
"Yeah. Even if we wanted to, we don't know how." Beetlemon told him.
"I can't fight them and keep you safe. You must go!" Seraphimon shouted.
"Are you kidding? You can't fight all those guys by yourself. I mean, come on, you just woke up." Agunimon stood.
"You need us." Lobomon said.
"Dai, the D-Arc! Let's try it out!" Veemon announced making the girl look at him.
Pulling her new digivice out of her pocket, she looked it over as she pulled out a card from her pouch and found a card that was labelled Aura Barrier.
It also had a picture of Magnamon on it which made her wonder if this was a power that the Golden Knight had.
"We should be fighting them." Sorcerymon said as he saw the Evil Warriors get ready to attack.
"Fine 'cause we fight you good." Grumblemon said.
"Veemon, hurry!" Dai called.
Nodding, the dragon ran over and stood in front of the group as the three evil Warriors blasted out their attacks which stunned Seraphimon, Socerymon and the others as they watched.
Spinning the card, Dai then held it between her middle and index fingers as she moved her arms in a counter clockwise motion and then pulled her arms in front of her chest as she slashed the card in the slot in her D-Arc.
"Digi Modify: Aura Barrier Activate!" she called.
Around Veemon, a golden shield of light appeared and blocked the attacks, blasting them back at the three Evil Warriors making them cry out as they were sent flying back.
"Wow!" Neemon said as Bokomon gasped.
"Hey, it worked." Veemon smiled.
Just then, Mercurymon appeared in front of Veemon and was about to attack him, but Seraphimon moved the drgaon behind him as he used his Strike of the Seven Stars on the Warrior of Metal.
Jumping back, Mercurymon used his Dark Reflection to absorb the attack and the blasted it back at Seraphimon making the angel cry out in pain from the attack.
"No, Seraphimon!" Dai cried out.
"So the victor goes the spoils." Mercurymon smirked as he downloaded the Fractal Code from the angel.
"NO!" Sorcerymon yelled as the angel became a blue digi egg.
"Seraphimon turned into a digi egg!" Agunimon gasped.
"How ironic. Seraphimon sought to defeat Cherubimon, but now his Fractal Code shall be used for our end." Mercurymon smirked.
"No, it can't be. The hope of the Digital World is gone." Sorcerymon looked down sadly.
"No, it's not!" Zoe ran over and grabbed the egg, holding it to her chest protectively.
"Maybe we can bring him back if we have his egg, right Sorcerymon?" Zoe asked as she ran over to the group.
"Yes, we must protect that egg at all costs." Sorcerymon declared.
"Oh, thou shan't get far, trust me." Mercurymon said as he and the others chased after Zoe.
Reaching into her deck, Dai found a new card and nodded as she decided to use it.
"Digi Modify: Hyper Speed Activate!" she slashed the card.
Veemon then ran at top speed as he grabbed the blonde girl and sped over to where his human was standing, Bokomon and Neemon clinging to the mahogany haired girl's legs as they hid behind the Warriors.
"Thanks." Zoe panted as she held the egg closely.
"If we can get that egg to Ophanimon, she may be able to revive Seraphimon." Sorcerymon said.
"All right, come and get it." Beetlemon said as he, Lobomon and Agunimon blocked the girls.
"How stupid." Mercurymon said.
"Are you chicken?" Beetlemon taunted.
"Yeah, you big metal head." Zoe glared.
"Very well. Thy fate is sealed." Mercurymon declared.
"We shall take it by unpleasant, agonizing force." He said as Sorcerymon placed his hand on the wall, a prism shape glowing rainbow colors as it revealed a button.
"Your arrogance will be your downfall." Sorcerymon said pushing the button as the wall behind him shattered to reveal a stone wall and a door.
As the shards shattered down, the group reverted to their human forms and quickly ran for the door and escaped.
"Quick, this way!" Sorcerymon yelled as he led the group down the stone hallway.
"Well, duh!" JP gasped as everyone panted as they ran.
"We coming get you!" Grumblemon called as the door was blasted.
Stopping in front of a wall, Sorcerymon pushed another button that made the door rise up.
"You can escape through here." He said as everyone gasped at the sight of the Trailmon hidden in the escape tunnel that was under water.
"Wow, a getaway Trailmon!" JP gasped.
"Come on, let's go!" Takuya announced as everyone ran for the duck Trailmon and boarded.
"Sorcerymon, hurry up!" Zoe called.
"I'm not coming." He told them.
"What?" the blonde gasped.
"What do you mean?" Dai asked.
"The egg is all that matters now. I must ensure its safety. Now go! There isn't much time!" Sorcerymon called as the Evil Warriors drew nearer to him.
"You don't stand a chance!" Takuya called.
"Protect Seraphimon! It's our last hope." Sorcerymon said as the door closed on him.
"No, we won't leave you!" Tommy yelled, but the Trailmon was already moving.
"SORCERYMON!" Tommy screamed as tears streamed down his face.
"Tommy, that isn't helping anyone." Zoe scolded.
"I can't believe that this is all that's left of Seraphimon. I'm never gonna let this go." Zoe held the egg.
"That egg may be the important thing in the Digital World right now. It's its last hope so all of Cherubimon's forces are gonna be gunning for it. But no matter what happens, we gotta protect it. We can't let Sorcerymon's sacrifice be in vain. I hate to say this, but it's up to us now guys." Takuya declared.
Everyone had a determined look on their face as they held onto the doors or different parts of the Trailmon as they escaped down the tunnel.
To be continued…