Tooth, as the Guardian of Memories, remembered
every child that had ever believed in her, and the teeth she had collected from
She knew Casey had most of her baby teeth lost in playground brawls, and
Bee’s first had been forcibly knocked out a little earlier than planned.
had lost the first few in martial arts tournaments, and Faye knocked her own
out while skateboarding or climbing trees.
Rocky lost hers from falling a lot
as a child-though that did nothing to slow her down-, and Ally had…lost
most of hers before she was eight.
Ma had always been so good about brushing
and flossing, and lost all of her baby teeth naturally, each like a sharp
While no mortal could have teeth as white as Jack’s, Ma had been
the closest, and so Tooth found herself immediately taking a liking to the
And if she found herself harboring a little crush, well…
It certainly wouldn’t be the first time.
Within a couple hours of breakfast, Ma was
fairly certain she had met all of the mini-fairies that collected the Eastern
Biyomon seemed to like them, flying around with the swarm
in whatever games they managed to think up.
One of the fairies, smaller than
her sisters, had taken to following Ma around instead.
The teenager found she
hardly minded, and listened to the little fairy chirp away, pink eyes bright
with joy. Ma recognized the behavior for what it was-as Ally had been-,
and found herself offering friendship.
“Do you mind if I call you Sweet Tooth?”
The fairy was surprised by the offer, overwhelmed into tears.
They were so often lumped together, always ‘the fairies’, so to have a name, your very own name, like Jack Frost had given Baby Tooth…
It was an amazing gift.
sputtered and giggled as the newly-dubbed ‘Sweet Tooth’ nuzzled her face,
squeaking happily in acceptance as the girl‘s hands cupped her small body.
“I’ll take that as a ‘yes’.”
Tooth was so busy directing her fairies that
she hardly noticed that most of them were chatting amongst themselves about
When she did listen in-during a lull in the loss of teeth-,
the female spirit was curious.
Someone was reading the fairies a
Intrigued, Tooth flew over to one of the many sitting rooms in Santoff
Claussen, peeking through the open doorway.
Ma was sitting in an armchair by
the fireplace, legs crossed and Biyomon sitting comfortably on her lap, and
holding a book open near her shins.
The mini-fairies fluttered quietly in front
of her even as they rotated out, shushing the elves when their belled hats
“Will watched, horrified. A thought was forming, an idea was
lurking somewhere at the edge of his mind. He looked to one side, saw the
flickering torch that Baron Arald had discarded. Fire. The one weapon that
could defeat the Kalkara. But he was forty meters away...He whipped an arrow
from his quiver, slipping from the saddle and running lightly to the flickering
There was an animation to her face and a subtle draw in her
voice that enraptured the female spirit, and she softly ordered her entourage
to take care of the teeth for a while.
Fluttering silently to the back of the
room, she smiled at the happy little squeaks of her fairies as they listened
intently to the story as the boy defeated the evil Kalkara and earned the
praise of his fellows for his bravery.
“Will sat quietly for some
minutes. Almost unthinkingly, his hand went to touch the bronze oak leaf symbol
hanging at his throat. Faintly, the evening breeze carried the sounds of the
Battleschool drill yard to him, and the nonstop hammering and clanking from the
armory that had been going on, night and day, for the past week. They were the
sounds of Castle Redmont preparing for the coming war. Yet strangely, for the
first time in his life, he felt at peace.”
Ma closed the paperback
novel with a snap, smiling at her audience.
“And that’s the end.”
A chorus of unhappy squeaks rose up from the
fairies, and even Biyomon whined.
“But that can’t be the end!” The pink bird
Digimon insisted, big blue eyes pleading. “What about Morgarath? And the
Wargals? Are Alice and Will going to end up together?”
Petting her Digimon’s
head comfortingly, Ma laughed.
“I can’t just tell you! But the fairies have
work to do, and I can’t keep them here any longer, can I?”
The fairies, while
equally impatient for more of the story, sheepishly agreed.
nodding, and Ma nuzzled her head comfortingly.
“But I’ll read the next one
after we get settled in, okay?”
“Okay!” The Digimon approved, giggling.
Tooth zipped up, nodding quickly, and Ma smiled.
“Good! Now that that’s
settled, you should all be heading out.”
As she gently shooed them out, careful
of their delicate wings and mindful of the elves underfoot, Tooth fluttered up
with a smile.
“That was a wonderful story.”
The teenager blushed as red as her
dyed bangs, avoiding direct eye contact as her hand carded through the soft
feathers on Biyomon’s head.
“Oh, well…Thanks. I didn’t write the book or
anything, but they seemed to enjoy it…”
“Would you mind if I sat in next time?”
Tooth wondered, somewhat shy.
Warm brown eyes met vibrant purple, and the
fairy’s heart went all aflutter as Ma smiled.
“I’d…really like that.”
The kitchen was bustling with yeti baking
cookies and mixing hot chocolate, fruitcakes sitting on the counters to cool
while being firmly defended from greedy elfin fingers.
Ma watched them with
interest, petting Biyomon’s head as the Digimon happily munched on cookies, a
mug of cream-laden coffee cooling on the table next to her.
“Oh, you should have
seen it! Bunny was all sorts of colors-Bei Jing, twenty-three lateral
incisors and nine bicuspids-and Jack couldn’t fly straight he was laughing
so hard! I felt bad, but-Denver, fourteen premolars and eleven canines-he
was bright pink and I couldn’t help myself!” Tooth chattered, wings buzzing
though she was sitting down.
Giggling at the image of a bright pink Easter
Bunny, the teenager smiled.
Faye had much worse habits-changing topics in
the middle of sentences, forgetting the point of the conversation, getting
distracted by shiny objects-, so Ma found herself adjusting easily.
were so many stories to share; of failed pranks and creative retribution, of
trials and victories, that she had no idea where to start.
So Ma let Tooth go
on, recounting whatever stories came to mind amidst her work, and relaxed as
Biyomon finished her cookies to snuggle up like a large feathered cat.
was how things would be from now on…
Ma didn’t mind so much, in that case.
Ma was very much used to being the adult in
Faye, the oldest, was also the most immature, and while Casey
had good intentions, she often let her emotions get the best of her.
the most serious and no-nonsense of the group, but she only interfered in the
most serious cases, leaving everything else for Ma to handle.
‘snowball/elf wars’ fell under Ma’s jurisdiction.
Faced with the war zone-melting
snow on the furniture, dizzy elves stumbling across the wet floor, icy patches
tripping the little creatures-and two suddenly sheepish teenagers, she let
out an exasperated breath as Tooth giggled.
I should be paid for this.
Biyomon had never felt such warmth in her
entire existence, like being comfortably wrapped up in a fluffy blanket with
some yummy hot chocolate all the time.
Her life Before-before Ma, before the
Guardians-was a vacuum in comparison.
While the Digimon had been together
since they hatched-had looked out for each other, had saved each other-,
there was no denying the emptiness they had all felt.
How could any Digimon
live without a partner for longer than they had?
While most seemed to live
rather happily until they reached the Champion level, Biyomon doubted she could
Ma is such a wonderful partner, reading her stories and letting
her eat sweets and watching her play with the fairies, that Biyomon could not
ever imagine finding the will to Digivolve without her.
Even now, settled in
the nest of blankets Ma had created, the little bird Digimon felt whole and
happy like she never had before.
Resting her head on the teenager’s hip, listening
to the even, soft breaths of sleep, Biyomon smiled.
There was no way she could ever repay her.
Ma was exhausted.
Packing away Ally and Faye’s
things were difficult tasks in and of themselves, but together, they were massive.
It took hours to gather all of Ally’s shirts, blouses, pants, shorts, skirts,
jackets, purses and shoes, even with the help of Tooth and her mini-fairies,
not to mention the large collection of guitars that were apparently paramount
for the girl’s continued existence.
Faye had an impressive assortment of books,
from thick tomes to comics and graphic novels, and Ma carefully packed them
away in cardboard boxes for safe travel.
Tooth was glad for the three Snow
Globes given to her by North, which made sending the bags and boxes back to
Santoff Claussen much easier than if they had to carry them.
Night was falling
by the time they were done, and Tooth was growing busier as the Western
Hemisphere went to sleep with teeth under their pillows.
Holding Biyomon to her
chest like one would a sleepy toddler, Ma led the rambling fairy through
deserted back streets towards her home across town.
Sweet Tooth flitted around
the teenager’s head, chirping as she pointed out different things to the
curious Digimon, only half-listening to her sisters.
The brunette slowed as
they began to pass the local kindergarten, all bright colors and jungle gyms
even in the growing dark, and it brought a smile to her face.
from good memories, the girl blinked up at Tooth in mild confusion.
hadn’t realized she had stopped walking until then.
“Sorry, I was
Curious, the fairy flitted closer, her little helpers quieting.
Ma hesitated, but only for a moment.
What was the harm?
“This is where me, Kim and Casey met.” She explained, a smile blooming across
her face. “Casey was so eager to make friends, and Kim was always smiling…We
became really close.”
A giggle escaped her, and Tooth almost burst at the good
memories she could see in the girl’s eyes.
“I remember showing them how to change diapers, and how to potty train…We made such a mess! And watching all five little ones…Oh, it was chaos!”
“Five?” Tooth voiced, momentarily confused.
have triplet brothers: Tab, Tob and Tib.” Ma explained, smile soft with
motherly affection. “The boys are only a little younger than Rocky, actually.
Little troublemakers, always into one thing or another…”
Tooth hovered for a moment,
putting the pieces together in her mind.
“But you were so young…Where were your
Suddenly, the warm spark of good memories dimmed, something sad
darkening her expression.
“They’re…busy. Casey’s dad is gone for months at a
time, and so is Kim’s. Sometimes Casey’s aunt has time to watch them, but not
The fairy frowned, not liking the sound of that at all, and Sweet Tooth
chirped in agreement, feathers puffed up in agitation.
But she was not ready to
drop her guard-maybe she never would be-, so Ma diverted the
conversation smoothly despite the flash of upset she felt from Biyomon.
getting late. We should keep going.”
Though Tooth wanted to know, to
understand, she let the conversation fall away for the moment.
up at her partner with big worried eyes, sensing the anger and guilt and
sadness flaring through the Bond, but found nothing to say.
Sweet Tooth twittered softly, landing on the teenager’s shoulder and nuzzling into her neck.
Tooth hovered in place for a moment, conflicted, before she realized
something was wrong.
Ma barely paused, half-turning to the female
spirit in confusion, and the fairy gasped as shadows reared up behind the girl
The shadows came down, and-
Flinching back as the green flames exploded against dark sand, Ma stumbled as
Sweet Tooth squeaked in fright.
Biyomon landed on the ground, standing
protectively in front of her partner while scanning the darkness for danger.
“You should be more careful.”
The bird Digimon jumped into the air, turning to
face the man standing off to their right, half-hidden by shadows and showing a
dangerous shark’s grin.
“You never know what sorts of monsters are going bump
in the night.”
“Pitch!” Tooth growled, flying in-between them and bristling in
protective fury. “What are you doing here?”
“Getting rid of a threat.” He
replied easily, circling them like prey. “Why would I let you and the Guardians
keep such weapons when they can be used against me? Best to strike now, while
they’re still vulnerable.”
Placing a hand on Sweet Tooth to soothe the little
fairy, Ma’s heart squeeze in dread.
Pitch’s smile was all sharp
edges and dark secrets.
The implication alone-no, they can’t be gone, not Casey and Kim, not them-was enough to trigger the brunette’s maternal instincts for the others.
Casey and Kim might have been trained, might
have more experience, but she would be damned if he won now and went after
“You won’t have time to regret hurting my friends.” Ma
growled, sounding very much like the mother bear her friends nicknamed her
Pitch was not at all threatened, not like he had been with the others,
who visibly had the skills and strength to back up their claims.
should have known better.
His nightmare-sand rose up as Nightmares, pawing
the ground and ready to charge-
Evading the green
spiral of flames as one of the mares disintegrated, the Nightmare King was
rather startled by the killer intent radiating from the little pink bird.
would not stand to have anyone hurt her partner.
“Spiral Twister! Spiral
Tooth flew through the air like a bullet, her wings slicing
through the threat like tissue paper, as her mini-fairies flew up out of harm’s
All but Sweet Tooth.
The little fairy hid in the shadow of Ma’s hair as
the brunette leapt into action, years of gymnastics and Kim’s instruction
coming into play.
Building up momentum, she kicked a Nightmare’s head into
dust, spinning into a crouch to avoid another biting her arm off before
thrusting up with both legs.
With a whinny, it was gone, and Ma twisted into a
standing position as Biyomon circled her protectively.
But Pitch had learned
his lesson twice before, and he wasted no time.
The three girls were
stunned as a large, humanoid ball of fire dropped out of the sky.
have got to be kidding me…”
Apparently not, since Meramon was still
there when she blinked.
Ma yelped as she dove
out of the way, shielding Sweet Tooth with both hands as a fiery fist broke
through the concrete she had been standing on only moments before.
alone!” Biyomon shouted. “Spiral Twister!”
The green spiral dissipated
on contact, and Tooth gasped as Meramon only grew larger as a result.
Twister! Spiral Twister! Spiral Twister!”
The bird Digimon stopped her assault, finally
realizing the effects of her flames, and wilted sheepishly.
laugh, Meramon swung his arm and smacked Biyomon into a brick wall with barely
a passing glance.
It felt like being punched in the heart, and Ma gasped at the
shock of it as Meramon turned to her with a smirk.
Sweet Tooth flew up in front
of the teenager as if she could somehow fend the large Digimon off, puffed up
and chirping loudly.
Laughing at the rather pathetic attempt, Meramon raised
his foot as if to just stomp them into the ground.
Tooth, cut off from them by
Nightmares, cried out in despair.
Then Biyomon was there, shielding them from the coming attack, and Ma could feel her through Bond, all of the worry and protectiveness and no, I won’t let you hurt her, not if I have a say in it…
And realized that there was no giving up, not now.
everyone she cared about was in danger.
Pitch cursed at the light that
“Biyomon, Digivolve to…Birdramon!”
Meramon was tossed
back by the sudden size-change, and Birdramon spread her wings with an eagle’s
shriek, flaming feathers lighting up the gloom.
The wind sang, mussing Ma’s
hair as it circled her in a miniature tornado, sharpening into blades that cut
through any Nightmares that tried to get close.
Honestly, Pitch was starting
to feel like this was just not his day.
Sweet Tooth squeaked, hiding
in Ma’s hair as the teenager regained her equilibrium, red shining through the
chocolate of her eyes.
With a wave of her arm, the wind flew out and struck the
surrounding Nightmares like a freight train as Birdramon took to the sky.
The projectile missed by scant inches, and the large phoenix Digimon took the
Meramon cried out as the multitude of fireballs
struck him in the chest, sending the humanoid Digimon flying back.
Herding her mini-fairies away from the battle, Tooth watched in awe as the brunette tore through the nightmare-sand constructs like tissue paper.
Swiftly dodging another attempt to ground her,
Birdramon dove, slamming into Meramon with such force that their combined force
created a false earthquake.
Before Ma could jump to her Digimon’s aid,
nightmare-sand wrapped around her legs and snapped back like a whip, flinging
the girl high into the air with a cry.
“MA!” Birdramon shrieked, sensing
her partner’s panic but unable to break free from the tussle with Meramon to
Everything blurred as she twisted and flipped, lights and stars blending in a dizzy display, so Ma closed her eyes and reached inside for the Bond, where the power had come from, and-
Having been rushing up to catch the girl
before she fell, Tooth gasped as the wind wrapped around her in a cyclone,
practically slingshotting her back.
And right at Pitch.
King had only a few moments to realize this before she pounced, knocking them
head-over-heels before slamming him into the ground.
Freeing her wings,
Birdramon reared back.
Meramon’s death scream
echoed off the bricks as he disintegrated into nothing, following in the path
his predecessors had traveled only hours before.
Honestly, Pitch would have
taken more notice if he was not being pinned by a very angry she-bear at
“If you ever come near my family again, I’ll personally rip
your throat out.” Ma promised, such steel in her voice that there was no doubt
at all that she would do just that when the time came.
Escaping through his
shadows, the shade attempted to look unruffled, cursing his own unease.
was it about these girls that was so hard to destroy?
“It’s time I left,
anyway.” He voiced, hiding his quick retreat with a casual air as he
disappeared into the gloom.
Birdramon landed behind her partner, her fiery
feathers lighting up the dark before the light flashed and they returned to
Dizzy from the sudden energy flux, Ma fell to her knees with a groan,
blinking slowly as a little feathered form buzzed up to her face.
Tooth?” She slurred, smiling weakly when the little fairy nuzzled up to her
face with a happy chirp in response.
Tooth was a whirlwind of motion,
beside herself with worry as she zipped between a bewildered Ma and exhausted
Biyomon in search of injuries.
“Are you alright? Did Pitch hurt you? Or
Meramon? What’s wrong?”
Bleary-eyed and horribly tired, it took a moment for
her to catch up with the fairy’s rapid speech.
“I’m okay…Just really tired…”
Holding up the last Snow Globe, Tooth gathered girl and Digimon into
her arms, coddling the teenager when she yelped at the sudden location change.
“We need to go back to Santoff Claussen! I’ll pick up your stuff later!”
having the energy to argue, Ma nodded, nuzzling her face into the soft feathers
of Tooth’s shoulder with a sigh as Biyomon curled into her side.
Just a little nap couldn’t hurt…
Once again, Courage, Friendship and Love had thwarted
Everything was as it should be.