A/N: Whoops, that took a bit longer than I expected, due to some stuff happening. Any rate. Still going to attempt to get two more chapters out this month, and the next one will be on-time! Next Monday. Aw yeah.
"We're cutting this one short," Xander said, returning his microphone to the stand. "I got a thing I need to do today."
The time: Sunday, 3 PM. The place: a busted, broken garage. The reason: a busted, broken garage band.
Around him, the other members of the band mumbled their 'sure, alright's. It was around this time that their Sunday band practices usually devolved into unabashed screwing around, so it wasn't as though they were really missing out on any valuable rehearsal time. They had a gig coming up in a few weeks, but they'd handle that like they always handled their gigs: preparing frantically at the last second. (Hey, it worked so far.)
Desmon was sitting over on the beat-up couch, helping herself to a bag of cheese balls. The band members were more than used to their furry companion; they viewed her as something of a mascot. A mascot that they couldn't show to anyone outside of the band, but a mascot nonetheless.
"Hey, Desmon, are there any of those left?" Paul asked, playing a few odd notes on his guitar before he began the process of unplugging his amp.
"Juuuust a minute," the bat chirped, tipping the bag backwards to snag one last mouthful before tossing the bag over.
"Thanks, my wingy-flingy friend," the blonde guitarist said, popping one of the salty snacks into his mouth. "So what is it you're doing, Xander?"
"I have to go save the president of Nicaragua, thanks for asking," Xander said dryly, holding out his arm like a falconer. Desmon knew her cue, and hopped into the air, flapping over and perching on her friend's upper arm and shoulder.
"You got a date or somethin'?" Eric said, wiggling his eyebrows in the least subtle of suggestive ways, idly twirling his drumsticks. This being his garage, and his house, he wasn't so concerned with putting his stuff away in a rush.
"Yes," Xander deadpanned, his eyelids drooping. "I have a hot date, at 3 PM on a Sunday, and have absolutely neglected to tell you about it." The sarcasm was so thick, you could cut it with a knife. "Bite me."
No, he had agreed to meet up with Natalie- or rather, had said "meet me at the Lotus Café tomorrow", and expected them to show up. After all, standing on a rooftop and a fire escape at 11 PM did not make for the greatest circumstances. (Moreover, Xander got the distinct impression that the people who lived in the building whose fire escape he was using were starting to get pissed. Not that he particularly cared, but he didn't want to try and explain Desmon away.)
And he definitely didn't want to explain this to his bandmates. Yeah, they were familiar with Desmon, but this was information that was filed solidly under the heading of need to know.
"Well, don't get yourself killed. We need you for the gig, wait until after that," Will said, packing his bass away.
Xander replied only by flipping their bassist off; Will smirked in reply.
Xander and Desmon had been following Yasyamon the previous night- a pursuit that led them, instead, to Natalie and Raumon. They had simply seen something leaping from rooftop to rooftop while Xander been on Will's balcony. He had come over to try and hammer out a song, but instead found themselves standing outside, trying to get away from the sound of the upstairs neighbors holding a party- the kind populated primarily by drunken frat boys. Desmon had insisted on following the sword-wielding digimon, acting on a whim and a hunch.
Really, if not for Xander's desire to get away from the upstairs neighbors, he might not have obliged. They had taken off on foot in pursuit; it moved too erratically for them to be able to reliably follow it by car, and so they chose to take the slower, finer-tipped (so to speak) approach.
On their way there, they might not have noticed the sudden gust of wind that blew through the streets- but they definitely noticed the blue light that accompanied the arrival of the little blue-and-black gadget that now rested, not mentioned to anyone since last night, in Xander's pocket.
Though he had no way to prove it, he had the distinct feeling that he and Natalie weren't the only ones who had been visited by the mysterious gizmo fairy. He was right, of course, but right now, Natalie was his only lead.
In a few moments, Xander had bid goodbye to his bandmates, and he and Desmon had settled into his beat-up car.
"It's unreal, don't you think?" Desmon said cheerfully as Xander put the key in the ignition. "Finding another digimon!"
"I'm assuming you didn't mean the one with swords," the human said, glancing sidelong at the bat. No, that one had been a rogue; if there was someone else with the little device, that... that may have meant something. Maybe.
"Welllll... that was pretty wild too. But no, yeah, I meant the bird," Desmon confirmed, twitching her ears. "He seemed familiar somehow."
Xander made a small noncommittal noise, a low, short hum.
"You're going to wait in the car for now," Xander said as they pulled into the parking lot (or really, parking strip) behind the Café.
"Aww, what?" Desmon exclaimed, indignant. "Why?"
"Well, for one, we're in a public place," Xander replied, putting the car into park (with a haphazard, somewhat-askew parking job- but hey, he was inside the lines, it counted).
"Why couldn't we have met somewhere where there won't be other people?" the bat mumbled.
"Because I don't want her to think I'm going to chloroform her and have her wake up in my nonexistent basement."
Desmon paused. "Point."
"Second, because it's a long drive back to the apartment and I'm lazy." Desmon snickered at that; Xander smirked, and continued. "I'll leave my iPod and my keys. Try not to get anyone's attention," he said, getting out and leaning his head in to talk to talk to Desmon. (His car windows were tinted, which helped keep Desmon low-key, but still.)
"Roger-dodger," the digimon replied, giving a thumbs-up as she picked up her friend's Mp3 player, albeit a bit clumsily, with the hands atop her wings. Xander nodded once, locked the doors, and made his way towards the front door of the Café. He scanned the tables inside as he passed by the front window. It was almost entirely empty; that tended to be the case. The Lotus Café was either completely packed, or almost entirely empty. There was no middle ground.
But still, he caught sight of one occupied table in the back corner; a familiar red-headed girl, tapping at her phone and looking guarded, with a ceramic mug of tea seat to cool.
The tinkling of the bell attached to the door as Xander entered caught her attention; she looked up, and raised a hand in greeting, but said nothing.
"Hey," he said simply, inviting himself to sit down across from her.
"So," Natalie said, sitting forward a bit more. Looking at him up close, he noticed a couple things she hadn't seen last night- namely, the multitude of piercings. He had no less than five pierces of silver jewelry in his face, and between them and his disconcertingly yellowish brown eyes (were those contacts?), he had a very harsh look to him.
Not lying: it made her a bit uncomfortable.
"You've got a digimon too," Xander said, ever one to skip right to the point. He spoke quietly, so as not to give their conversation away to prying ears of the barista slacking off, reading, behind the counter, but he had no interest in beating around the bush.
"Yes," Natalie said, staying guarded, both in terms of how much she spoke, and physically- she sat back and folded her arms when she spoke.
"Hm." Xander frowned slightly. "Had you ever seen another digimon before last night?"
Natalie shook her head. "No. Not as far as I know, at any rate."
Xander ran a hand backwards through his hair, sighing through his nose. "Then you're just as much in the dark as I am. Fantastic."
"I'm sorry?" Natalie tried, quirking an eyebrow. "This is as new to me as it is to you, you know. I just spent fifteen years thinking my best friend was the only thing like him in the city - heck, the world, far as I knew!"
She stopped and took a sip of her tea; she was getting a bit too animated, she knew. "But then in one night, I get one making threats on my life, some mysterious force gives me a gadget that made my friend do a form-change thing, and then another shows up that he thinks he knows from somewhere. And then her friend grills me in a coffee shop."
Natalie paused again. Xander's eyebrows had both shot up.
"... I've had a really weird day, is what I'm saying," Natalie summarized, calmly taking another sip of tea.
"Well, that gives me something to work with," Xander admitted, smirking a bit. Mostly, it was a confirmation of experiences - primarily that she had been with her digimon for fifteen years - the same as him - and that the same experience had granted them the little device, at the same time.
But it also gave him a bit of insight into what the device did. He had poked at it all of last night, and still had no clue what to make of any of it.
... kind of.
Whatever. Progress was progress.
"So what happened last night?" Xander asked, kicking his chair back and balancing it on the back two legs, ignoring the barista's disengaged mumble of four on the floor, please.
Natalie thought for a moment, and thought back. She told of the noise on top of their apartment, then finding Yasyamon; she recounted the fight, though not blow-for-blow, and when the little device had appeared in her hands, and when it made Raumon turn into Doctorimon- or maybe let him turn into Doctorimon was a better phrase. She retold the entire experience up until Xander and Desmon had shown up, and felt safe in assuming she could stop there. She spoke quietly, casting looks over to the barista occasionally; luckily, he was thoroughly zoned out, or at least seemed to be.
"Hm. That's it, then?" Xander asked.
Natalie nodded into her tea.
She deliberately chose not to mention the incident by the river; she didn't care to bring it up, as she wasn't wholly sure it had anything to do with anything. Regardless, she made a mental note to delve into that on her own time. Raumon's gut feelings, and her own as well, were usually good.
She just wasn't sure how much she could trust this new guy.
And such as it was, Xander wasn't so certain of how much to trust this new girl, either.
"Give me your phone number," he said without preamble. When Natalie yet again raised an eyebrow, he shrugged one shoulder. "If we find anything out, it'd be useful. Or if another digimon like Yasyamon shows up."
He expected they would; call it a hunch.
Yeah- that was just his razor-sharp lightning brain at work, putting the pieces together.
Please, hold your applause.
"I suppose I can't argue with that," Natalie said after a minute, nodding her head. She rattled off her cell phone number; Xander thumbed it into his phone in one go. He gave his in return, and within moments, their contact information had been shared.
"What I think," Natalie said, pocketing her phone, "is that there's a connection."
"Mm," Xander said, closing his eyes and leaning back.
Natalie's eyebrow twitched a bit. "The thing made Raumon stronger. We wouldn't have gotten them if we didn't need them."
"And we wouldn't need them," Xander said, cutting her off and cracking one eye open, "if there weren't more freaks of the week like Yasyamon. Am I right?"
Oh boy was Nat getting tired of this guy's attitude in record time. "That was the point I was getting to, yes," she said, calming herself afterwards with a long sip of tea.
Xander nodded, letting his chair legs clatter to the floor. He paused, sighed, and rubbed his chin in thought. There was a lot he could say, but right now, nothing was certain. A rogue digimon had appeared; it had been 'looking' for Raumon, at the least; more might appear, or they might not.
Plans are impossible to make, after all, when the future that affects those plans is a big, resounding question mark, and he wasn't about to exhaust energy worrying about things he had no way of preparing for.
"Well, this has been enlightening," Xander said; his tone made it hard to tell how sarcastic he was being. Behind them, the bell on the door rang gently; a party of teenagers, about five strong, was entering.
That was their cue to leave.
"It was good meeting you in a place that wasn't on a fire escape," Natalie said, finishing her drink and standing up; Xander smirked. "We'll see each other again, I'm sure."
"Probably," Xander confirmed, nodding. They didn't part ways just yet; they had both parked behind the Café, and had to loop around to the back.
Desmon rolled down the window of Xander's car half-way when he and the girl approached. "Hi!" she chirped over the sudden blast of funk-rock she was pumping over the car stereo. Natalie smiled and lifted a hand in greeting. "If Xandie's been rude, don't mind it. He's just like that," the bat said, her ears twitching as she beamed.
"I'll keep it in mind," Natalie said; Xander rolled his eyes. She continued her way down the row of cars; Xander did not wait and watch, instead climbing into his driver's seat.
"So how'd it go?" Desmon said, looking over at her friend as the car rumbled to life.
Xander shrugged one shoulder, pulling out of his parking space.
"I just really hope we don't get stuck playing crisis reaction squad together," he said, and left it at that, and set his mind to mentally charting the route for his apartment.
Neither Xander nor Natalie had noticed the subtle, knowing expression that the barista cast to the pair as they left, nor the small, secret, almost hopeful smile that pulled one corner of his mouth up.
Desmon went on at great length the entire drive back. Oh, she talked about nothing in particular; just whatever ideas sprang to her mind, non-stop.
"So all I'm saying is that you totally should have got me a muffin or something. The muffins they make there are the best."
Xander had long ago learned that there were times when Desmon had anything useful to say, and that there were times he could safely tune out. This was one of the latter times. (In full fairness, though, Desmon was perfectly aware that her friend was disengaged, and began saying things simply to see the non-reaction she would get.)
This is how, as Xander pulled into his parking space, Desmon was in the middle of saying: "... so, the point is that I stole like all your boxers and shot them at passing children, and that's why the elastic might be a bit worn out."
"I'm sure I would have asked," Xander deadpanned, casting a sidelong look and a smirk at the bat. She grinned. Xander gathered his belongings, then crossed over to the other side to let Desmon out.
The bat looked around. Nobody was watching; she couldn't hear anyone in the vicinity (and if those ears couldn't hear anything, there was nothing to be heard). Great.
She hopped out of the car and spread her wings before she even hit the ground. A bit of frantic flapping later, she had risen up and landed deftly on the metal railing outside their apartment on the second floor. She looked down expectantly; even at distance, she could see Xander roll his eyes. He began climbing the stairs two at a time, and in moments was unlocking the door.
Their apartment was, in a word, tiny. In two words: tiny, and messy. It consisted of two rooms- the main room, and the bathroom. The kitchen was relegated to one corner of the main room; in the exact opposite corner, above the window, Xander had rigged up a bit of mesh net, with no small amount of tacks and nails ("I'm not getting the deposit back on this fuckin' dump, anyway," he had reasoned). The net was padded by a pair of small blankets and a handful of small pillows.
No prizes for guessing who this setup was for; the moment the door was opened, Desmon hopped her way over and flew the short distance up into the suspended bed.
"So what do we do now?" Desmon asked, kicking back in her little nest, as Xander face-planted into the futon couch in the middle of the room (one of the few proper pieces of furniture in the apartment, and Xander's bed of choice).
"Nothing," Xander said, his voice muffled by the throw pillow his face was currently buried in. He was in no mood to spend his night doing much of anything; tomorrow he had to go back into work, and he had enough to think about as it was. After a moment, though, he did stand up- though just for long enough to retrieve a soda from the fridge and turn the TV on, after which he promptly face-planted into the couch again.
"So you're sure," Xander said, "about the freaky crow?"
Desmon almost didn't hear him, between the fact that he was speaking into a pillow and the fact that the TV's volume was cranked up high. Still, though- bat ears.
Xander paused, as though to think. "So. Chinese sound good for tonight?"
"So how'd it go?" Raumon asked, looking up from Alice in Wonderland as Natalie walked into their room.
Natalie breathed out through her teeth and flopped onto her bed, staring up at the ceiling.
"That good?" the bird said, closing his book and setting it on the floor before clambering up onto his friend's bed.
"It's like talking to a brick wall," she said. "You're sure about the bat?"
Raumon nodded in response. "I don't know why, but I do know that it's something."
It was the Thursday after Xander had met up with Natalie, and since then, very little of consequence had happened. No more digimon had shown up- at least, as far as the mohawked boy or red-headed girl knew. Neither had made any attempt to contact each other in the interim, and both were just fine with that turn of events.
Xander had spent his night as he always had- rehearsing to the point of exhaustion for the gig that the band had tomorrow night. The Rock Star, the place was called- a dive of a music club on the other side of the city. Kind of a dump, being honest, but a gig was a gig.
It was almost midnight by the time they got done, and by the time they had packed up their gear, the clock had already rolled over. Paul and Will had already cleared out,while Eric waited patiently (but not too patiently) for Xander and Desmon to scram.
"Hey, Desmon," Xander said as he opened the door that'd lead out to the driveway (and thus, to his car), preparing to ask the bat to get her ass in gear, but he didn't get to finish saying it. It was at this moment that, in his pocket, his phone began to buzz- a text message alert. He frowned, pulling out out with an under-his-breath hiss of who the hell as he unlocked his phone. He heard sirens in the distance- probably just some prime example of human life crashing his car into a light post.
From: Natalie - 00:08
Check out the sky looking towards downtown. Digimon, maybe.
Well, that was one way to break the ice, wasn't it? He hissed through his teeth.
that's nice. but i'm busy. get back to me when something actually happens.
He tapped back the message rapid-fire. Desmon gave him a quizzical look from the ratty couch.
"Are we going, or what?" the bat asked, her ears twitching.
"Yes. I've been waiting on you, pudding for brains," Xander mumbled, cocking an eyebrow.
"Who was it?" Desmon chirped, flitting out of her bed and to the floor, walking over alongside Xander.
"I'm leavin' you in the dark, bro," Eric said.
"Fine by me," Xander said, watching as Eric flicked the light off and retreated into his home. Light from street-lamps outside bled through the windows, meaning that he could still see his way well enough to get over to the door. Xander paused, then, considering whether or not he should let Desmon in on the knowledge. If he didn't, he knew that she - with no sense of privacy - would probably just go through his phone the moment he fell asleep, so, whatever. "Bird girl."
The bat's face lit up and her ears perked up. "What's she say?" Desmon said, tilting her head.
"Nothing of impor-"
At that moment, as if on cue, Xander's phone went off again.
"You should call her," Desmon chirped, knowing without being told who the message was from, before Xander even opened it.
"Yes, thank you for your insight. I don't care," the human snapped back, rolling his eyes and opening the text message.
From: Natalie - 00:10
Don't shoot the messenger. Figured you might be closer to downtown than us.
He was, of course, but that didn't mean he wanted to be the one running around on whims and hunches at midnight.
Xander moved to tuck his phone back into his pocket, but Desmon looked up at him, one eyebrow quirked, a smarmy expression on her face that he could see even in the dark. "What?" he muttered, but Desmon said nothing, merely continued fixing him with the same look.
She did not change expression until Xander groaned loudly and began flicking through his phone to call Natalie as he swung open the door. Desmon went out first, flitting over to his car.
"Hey," Natalie's voice came over the phone within two rings.
"What's going on that's so important it's got you talking to me," Xander said, rolling his eyes. This had better be good.
"Look towards downtown, and tell me if you're seeing what I was seeing. Sorry, a bit busy right now." By the sound of things, she was running down a flight of stairs.
"I'm not seeing jack," Xander said dismissively, even though he was still inside. He sighed, stepped outside and looked off his porch, towards downtown.
The moment he looked, he saw it, even though it was hard to make out clearly. From where he stood, he had a good enough, if somewhat obscured, view of the sky over downtown (they were pretty darn close to it, after all), and he could definitely see a shape. Desmon, for her part, was perched on top of his car, looking pointedly at it. It was...
A gigantic freaking bird, silhouetted against the halo of light surrounding the buildings. There was no reason for him to be able to spot a bird from this distance, no matter how fast it was approaching, unless the bird was the size of a Buick. It moved slow, barely beating its wings; it didn't seem to be causing any damage, but it didn't take much imagination to think that it might be what caused the sirens just moments before- if some excellent example of human intelligence had been craning his neck to look up at the bird from hell, he might have not been looking where he was going and caused an accident.
Filed under not surprising. (The idea that some genius might have caused an accident due to a giant bird, not the giant bird itself. That was plenty surprising.)
Desmon flew up to land on Xander's shoulder, and was about to exclaim, but he deftly reached up and held her snout shut with one hand.
"Yeah, see?" Natalie said; her phone picked up the sound as she opened her passenger side car door for Raumon, then circled around and climbed into the driver's seat herself. "You guys are welcome to check it out, but we're on the way."
"Riiight. Well. We'll see what happens." For a moment, Xander was tempted to tell her you're on your own, but some prideful part of him refused to take this lying down. With that, his finger tapped down on the touch-screen and ended the call.
"We gonna?" Desmon said once Xander freed her mouth. Though she tried to stay calm, she couldn't hide the excitement in her voice. Something was happening. The young man sighed, closing his eyes and thinking for a moment. Desmon waited, expectant, with bated breath.
If Xander had checked the little device in his pocket, he would have seen a blinking dot, like a radar, flickering away on the black screen.
Xander wondered to himself why he apparently kept forgetting that he had a car, but really, the reason was that it would be impossible to track the thing in the sky except by foot, but still.
Desmon had kicked off of Xander's shoulder and flew high above, taking care to hide behind trees, buildings, the like, even though it was dark. Occasionally, Xander would lose sight of the bat, but he didn't worry overmuch. She was trying to avoid being seen, and that was a goal he could get behind. The city was remarkably quiet (who went out on a Thursday night, really?), though far from dead.
"You're way too low down there on the ground," Desmon remarked quietly from up above; her friend cast her a slightly dirty look.
"Then stop moving," he said, maybe too quiet for her to hear- as he passed by a small group of clearly-drunk twenty-somethings hailing a cab. Well. More bulldozed through, but not the point. Desmon heard him, though, and paused, glancing down. Xander ignored the nasty looks they shot his back as he ducked into an alley, and for the second time, he found himself leaping onto a fire escape that wasn't his. He really hoped that nobody was inside to hear him taking the stairs two at a time and clomping across the landings.
Within a minutes' time, Desmon had landed on top of the building, and Xander heaved himself like a vaulter up onto the roof.
"Nice time, but technique needs work," the bat said, smirking. Xander flipped her off as she jumped up onto his shoulder. Both turned their attention upwards.
"That a digimon?" Xander asked, furrowing his brow. It was close- it was very close. It was indeed a bird, if there had been any doubt before; giant, blue-black, and apparently, completely oblivious to the pair.
"Remember what I told you about the last one?" The crack about pudding. "The same applies here."
The corner of the young man's mouth twitched downwards. "Somehow I'm not surprised," he said. At that moment, from within his pocket, the little mysterious device began to emit a high-pitched, shrill beeping noise. Xander hissed, not wanting to take his eye off of his friend, but regardless, he dug into his pocket and fished the gizmo out. Lit up on its black screen were exactly two words:
"And what the hell is that supposed to mean!?" he yelled as though someone would answer him. Above him, though, he heard the sound of flapping wings, and it drew his attention back up. The dark shape was getting ever closer, about to pass over them, but it still didn't seem to notice Desmon or Xander yet.
Key word: yet.
Before Xander could stop her, Desmon leapt off his shoulder, her tattered wings catching the air with little difficulty to speak of.
"Come on, you giant turkey! Black Static!" Desmon yelled, opening her mouth wide. Like she was releasing a shock wave, a series of - indeed - staticky black concentric rings were emitted from her mouth, flickering and crackling with energy.
"Get down here, you idiot!" Xander barked, but Desmon paid him no mind. The rings of energy flew at high speed, and those, if nothing else, got the giant flyer's attention, as they hit - harmlessly - its breast.
It turned its head down, and for the first time, both boy and bat got a clear look at it as it righted itself, flapping its wings to stay in position instead of gliding further.
It was, indeed, a tremendous bird- its body was covered in inky, blue-black feathers, but its wings and tail seemed to crackle with fire- it was impossible to tell where the feathers ended and the black flames began. Silver talons glinted, reflecting the light around them. Its beak was blunt and rounded, but it made up for it with - bizarrely - a plethora of sharp teeth poking out over its... could a bird, even a bird like this, really be said to have lips?
Not the point.
The giant bird glared down at Desmon, metallic-gold eyes glinting nastily. It offered no rebuttal, but spread its wings wide. "Night Roar!" it cawed, releasing a flurry of razor-sharp feathers from its wings. They burned like purple embers, silhouetted in the air like shooting stars for just a moment before they began to rain down on Desmon. They pelted away at the walls of the building, burning at concrete and brick like acid.
Judging entirely by how Desmon's attack did a fat resounding nothing, Saberdramon (as Xander assumed it was) had a clear advantage. The feathers were enough to knock Desmon almost out of the sky; she grit her teeth and stayed in the air, flapping frantically.
"That all you got?" she said with a cheeky grin. "Come on, birdy boy, we've got band practice to get back to."
"Black Saber!" Saberdramon called, swooping down lightning-quick, its claws pulsing with the same sort of energy that had engulfed the feathers of its previous attack. Desmon yelped, and was only narrowly able to avoid the grip of the bird's talons with a sudden, startled backwards motion.
Saberdramon swooped around in an arc, the air its wings beat back gusting over Xander- and the (thankfully scarce) people on the street below the building they were using as a battle platform, staring up and exclaiming.
Xander heard a car slam on the breaks to avoid another accident but still get a look up.
The young man hissed, trying to comb his mind for ideas. This one seemed more feral, instinctive than the one Natalie had described, that he and Desmon had chased last weekend. He looked at the little black and blue device; it yielded no answers aside from giving him a name for the big bird.
Saberdramon looped around, and once more spread its wings to fire dagger-like feathers. "Night Roar!"
This time, it did knock Desmon out of the air- and Xander's mind shut off, out of strategist mode as he leapt forward and into action. Luckily, Desmon wasn't far away; Xander was able to get underneath the bat and catch her. His arms, after all, was a much softer landing than the roof.
"God damn, you are an idiot," Xander muttered; Desmon chuckled, eyes still squeezed shut. He looked up, glaring at Saberdramon.
Okay. So the bird had come; it had a 'tude. It didn't seem to have an agenda, like Yasyamon, or if it did, it sucked at it. It was causing property damage. It had hurt Desmon. And it had put a damper in Xander's plans for the night.
(Okay, it was the penultimate of these things that was the most important, but much like bird lips, that was also not the point.)
"You feel up to trash this thing?" Desmon said, peering up at him with one cracked-open eye.
"I'm not feeling terribly charitable, no," Xander replied flatly, but he looked down and smirked.
Still clutched in one hand, even as he held Desmon in his arms, the little device began to glow.
It swirled with blue energy as one segment of the orange meter below the screen faded out. The screen began to display plenty of information- of course, now that Xander couldn't look at it, and too fast to make heads or tails of it. What was important was that Desmon began to glow, too; Xander let go of her, and she was actually suspended in the air instead of her dropping like a stone, as she too became surrounded by the blue energy.
"Desmon, drive evolve to..."
Desmon began to grow so rapidly that Xander had to step backwards, lest he be physically pushed away by her growing size. Her fur darkened by a full shade, as the webbing in her wings turned black. She kept the same general form, powerful large legs and huge wings, but she hunched forward more. Her ears grew longer and swept back, with silver rings hanging from both; from between them, a mane sprouted forth, running down to her neck, where it met up with a fluffy collar of white fur that had grown from the fluff on her chest. A silver metal collar was almost buried in the long fur there, and further down, a length of bandage settled around her waist
A long tail grew forth, covered in neither skin nor scale, a light blue shade it writhed and grew until it was as long as her body, and the tip erupted into a stinger like a scorpion's. This new tail swayed and moved almost like it had a mind of its own.
She looked almost draconic, a wyvern mixed with a bat, as she rose into the air.
"Hell yes!" Xander exclaimed, pumping his fist with a wolfish grin on his face.
Saberdramon's eyes narrowed. "Hmph. Finally," it murmured- the first words they had heard it say that weren't it calling an attack. "A digimon that is not so weak."
Corymon said nothing, but quickly, she glanced downward. They had an audience
Corymon was very thankful that she was not the one flapping her wings right over the street; she at least had a bit of the building to hide her from onlookers below. ... she'd have to make this quick.
"Where do you think you are, bub? I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you're messing with my plans for the night," Coryon rumbled after a moment; the flaming black bird only snorted.
"Night Roar!" Saberdramon, indeed, roared, spreading its wings to release a rain of flaming feathers.
Corymon snorted, shaking her head. So be it, then. "Black Stinger!" she roared right back, flapping up a bit higher. Her tail curled below her, and began to glow with a black aura, much like the static rings she had released as Desmon. Within a second's downtime, the energy was released- as a short blasts, each shaped roughly like the stinger itself.
They smashed into Saberdramon, five in all, and unlike Desmon's Black Static, Saberdramon could not shake these off like they were nothing. It keened loudly, glaring daggers at Corymon.
She responded by grinning, showing off rows of sharp teeth.
"Pick up the pace," Xander said, but not too loud. He had thought fast. He knew, though he could not see it, that what people were on the street would be getting out their cameras and doing as people in the modern age were wont to do whenever anything dangerous was happening. That is: want to be the first to document it.
And he sure as hell didn't want his voice picked up.
"Black Saber!" Saberdramon flapped once to lift higher into the air. Its talons began to glow again, and it prepared to swoop.
Well, pick up the pace; Corymon had heard her partner- and she had no intention of drawing this out longer than she had to. "Hurricane Rush!"
As though summoned by her words, the wind began to whip viciously around her. Xander swore he could see it, streams of airs tinted with a faint glow, swirling up around her- and he was confirmed when it grew stronger, both the wind and the glow.
Moving as though she weren't the size of a truck, Corymon surged forward, like she was going to headbutt Saberdramon in the gut. The sphere of wind surrounding her seemed to be a shield, smashing into the bird before Corymon would have actually connected. It burst like a bomb, throwing Saberdramon backwards. The black phoenix let loose a loud, ear-shredding keen as its body began to shift and distort, pixellating and- really, freaking the onlookers on the street right the heck out.
Saberdramon's loud cry only quieted down as it, like Yasyamon the weekend before, burst apart into glowing motes of light.
The data swirled around itself, and when a low beep sounded from Xander's little device, the pixel-like light focused like a beam and shot into the device. Just like Natalie's, the power meter restored to full, and the words Drive Charge: Full flashed on screen.
Corymon did not yet dare to land on the building- she wasn't sure it could support her weight, and didn't have any particular desire to deal with angry building owners and property damage charges. She frowned, thought hard for a second- just for a second. While she thought, though, her larger body began to swirl with blue light.
Before she even realized it, lost so in thought, Corymon was once again Desmon.
"Get down here, you idiot," Xander said quietly, smirking up at the bat. She blinked, then did a double-take, looking down at herself. She was still flapping to stay aloft quite a ways above her partner, and now that she could land safely, she took that chance, dropping out of the air like a stone.
Xander instinctively caught her; she grinned. He rolled his eyes, smirked, and bumped her in the forehead with his knuckles. "I can't carry you down the fire escape, you know," he said. She'd have to be very careful getting away- the both of them would, to avoid suspicion.
"I can dream."
A few minutes later, Desmon was flitting above, taking care to avoid being seen; Xander had descended the fire escape and looped around through a few back alleys to avoid any connection to the scene that had just occurred.
While he was less urgent, it was getting closer to 1 AM, and he still had work in the morning, and still had to drive back to his own apartment from Eric's place.
But even these concerns couldn't stop him from ringing up Natalie.
"We took care of it."