Chapter 24: The Destined Mission
*1st January 2003*
"Damn it! He got away!" A blond kid exclaimed kneeling to the ground in pain.
Two Digimon, Gargomon and Cherubimon jumped to their partner's side in an instant.
"Are you alright, Wallace? Your head is bleeding." Gargomon (Terriermon) asked.
"This is nothing. Let's go." Wallace assured the twin Digimon.
"But you can't even stand properly." Cherubimon commented in concern.
"We need to stop him from getting to the Chosen Children with prototype Digivices. Daisuke and the rest didn't know the current situation!" Wallace explained urgently. He could not let this lying down. He had to prevent darkness from expanding. With that Cherubimon took off carrying Wallace along with Gargomon following behind.
*24th December 2006*
Yagami Hikari, aged 15, was now a senior year student of Odaiba Middle School. She was humming "Christmas melody" while washing off her plates from her breakfast.
Returning back to her room, she headed to her desk where she saw a calendar with marking stating "Chirstmas Gathering", she was reminded that she had an annual gathering tonight.
"Time flies." She thought. "Tailmon should be arriving anytime."
"Hikari." Tailmon emerged from the computer from the Digital World.
"Tailmon, it's been a while. " Hikari greeted. Tailmon nodded. Hikari before her had grown taller with longer hair now even though her hairstyle did not change since three years ago. They had not met for three months since Hikari's last holidays.
Since the Digital World achieved its peace four years ago, there were not too many incidents involving dark Digimon like the Dark Masters or BelialVamdemon thanks for to the hardwork of certain selected chosen children on their separate mission. The rest of them were assigned with various areas to take care of. Due to the peace, without the need to, Digimon Partners did not usually stay with the Chosen Children unless it was a holiday season like Christmas.
"What's your schedule for the day? Can I join you?" Tailmon asked.
"I'm going to Sora-san studio to help her prepare her portfolio for her upcoming interview with the University of her choice." Hikari just packed her DSLR and was ready to leave home."Also to add in my collection for the year as usual. Of course, Tailmon can tag along." Hikari smiled. Tailmon smiled back looking forward to it.
The streets during Christmas holidays are busy. People were shopping for gifts, having gathering etc, chatting, and taking photos here and there.
"Sorry for interrupting." Hikari's voice ranged in the Takenouchi's Studio.
"Hikari-chan, you're here. Sorry for troubling you for my project." Sora's said poking her head out from under the table. Sora was 18 years old, in her senior year of High School.
"This is so amazing. I'll like to wear these flowery kimonos." Hikari said admiring Sora's design.
"I'm glad that you like them. Maybe you can come by next week with Miyako-chan. It's New Year after all, and she said she'll like to wear something feminine." Sora put her index finger on her chin deep in thought.
"She has a date with Ichijouji-kun." Hikari said sighing. She could not understand what her jogress partner saw in him. She herself on the other hand, disliked him with a passion. Tailmon was confused about the conversation.
"Miyako-chan had confessed her feeling to the whole school during our school Summer Festival. Everyone was shocked back then because she practically screamed in the PA system because she forgot to switch it off. I heard that she was actually rehearsing. Ichijouji-kun became the attention of the whole school back then even though he was just a guest." Sora explained. Miyako was a freshman in her High School.
"Confession is actually quite hard I have to admit. It took me quite a lot of courage to confess to Yamato back then." Sora confided.
"It was Taichi who gave me the confidence to go for it. I can't imagine if I didn't tell him about my feeling back then. Perhaps, we won't even be an item and we're going to regret it."
Four years ago, on 24th December, Sora stood outside the practice room where Yamato was having his practice for his competition that night. She had baked cookies and had wanted to give them to him.
"Come on, Sora, why are you stopping here?" Piyomon asked. Piyomon noticed her unusualness. Sora was trembling.
"Because…" Sora did not know how to put it actually. She was interrupted by Taichi and Agumon who happened to pass by. Taichi was planning to see how Yamato was doing for his practice and to give him some moral support.
"Sora-chan, what are you doing?" Taichi was surprised to see his foster sister standing out here.
"Taichi…" Sora noticed his arrival. Noticing the cookies she had on hand, she looked away and blushed. She did not want Taichi to use this to tease her. Just then, Gabumon opened the door because he smelt something nice.
"What is it?" Agumon did not realise until Gabumon mentioned it. Agumon started to sniff around.
"Is that for Yamato-kun?" Taichi asked glancing at the present she was holding.
"Well, yeah." Sora did not intend to admit it actually.
"What is it, something homemade?" Taichi asked feeling even more curious.
"Does that really matter?" She felt awkward.
"Aren't you coming in?" Gabumon asked the both of them.
"Sora has been hesitating for a while out there." Piyomon highlighted.
"Hey! Piyomon!" Sora wished she could dig a hole now.
"Hurry up and give it to him. They are about to start." Taichi understood what was going on. His foster sister was already at this stage, having a crush and all. She just needed a push. He would do it as an elder brother would.
"Y…Yeah…" Sora replied blushing madly. She started to suspect what Koushirou had been telling Taichi about her lately. Technically, Taichi was trying to get to know them better as a new friend. Taichi walked towards her and placed his hands over her shoulder to offer her some support.
"Hurry up!" He started pushing her to the door.
"But…" Sora was really afraid that she would be rejected.
"If you don't want it, we'll eat it." Agumon added teasingly.
"Okay… I'll be right back." Sora turned to the door and headed in.
"Good luck, Sora-chan." Taichi said quietly.
"Speaking of which, today is our anniversary." Sora smiled fondly wondering what kind of surprises Yamato had for her today.
"Hikari-chan, remember Jou's brother, Kido Shu? He came by to my mother's florist earlier before I came here. I think you should be hearing some good news from Daisuke-kun soon." Sora said giggling. "They are of the age after all."
"Really? That's fast. Looks like Jun-san's initiative had paid off too." Hikari commented while looking around her personal gallery in Sora's studio.
Hikari added a few photos of her, Daisuke and Takeru on her personal corner in Sora's personal studio.
"These are what we have taken for the past few months." Hikari showed Tailmon the photo of Daisuke sleeping under the tree, Takeru receiving a writing award and a photo of her locking her arms with the two boys smiling happily in it. The trio had the most normal year this year.
"It's all thanks to you all, we can have another peaceful year." Hikari was grateful to her Partner Digimon. Hikari looked back at the very first photos she had added towards the end of 2002. There was one with Tailmon posing happily with her Holy Ring back on her tail.
According to Gennai, the Holy Ring was used to control the power of darkness in Digimon Kaiser's base. It was left behind so Gennai used it for Jogress Evolution. With BelialVamdemon defeated, Jogress was not needed anymore. Nevertheless, Daisuke's V-mon and Ken's Wormmon could still jogress benefitted from the power of Qinglongmon.
There were photos of the six of them gathering in Ichijouji Ken's house having a Christmas Party, beside that, there were photos of the elder group of Chosen Children reuniting with their Partner Digimon because Daisuke wanted to give them all Christmas presents. They even opened a gate over at America for Palmon to give Mimi a surprise.
The days after 24th December had been crazy. The Digimon had appeared in the Real World from the rogue gate opened all over the world. In order to take care of these confused Digimon, Gennai had received some powers from Qinglongmon to assist the elder Chosen Children as well as Daisuke and Ken to allow the Partner Digimon of the original Chosen Children except Taichi who used his Crest of Courage, to evolve to their Perfect Form and Paildramon to evolve into his Ultimate form, Imperialdramon respectively.
Using the transport capability of Imperialdramon, eleven Chosen Children in Japan set off to all over the world to assist the Chosen Children all over the world to send the lost Digimon back to the Digital World using the power of D3 only Daisuke and the rest possessed. All of them manage to complete their mission except Sora and Miyako who had some problem due to the extremely cold weather they were facing in Moscow.
Sora smiled at the photos she had taken with Miyako and the Chosen Children of Moscow.
"Come to think of it, I heard that Ichijouji-kun had travelled to the Moscow equivalent of the Digital World last week. He's now at somewhere Hong Kong." Sora commented.
Digital World was just like the Real World, they overlapped with one another. In order to help them understand better, Koushirou had came up with a list of locations in the Digital World and lined them up against the countries of their World after cross referencing with the map on D-Terminal Miyako and her team had. For some reason, Hikari did not want to talk about Ichijouji Ken. She changed the subject instead.
"Hong Kong was where I had gone to with Koushirou-san. I wonder how the Three Hoi Brothers are doing right now?" Hikari had wanted to join Taichi in Paris actually but Koushirou-san requested her to join him instead. Koushirou wanted to talk to Hikari about Taichi's well-being after he had moved back to Odaiba just for the winter holidays and he wanted to hear Hikari on her observation.
*24th December 2002, Hong Kong*
"Oniichan had a nightmare last night claiming that someone wants to choke him to death." Hikari narrated while they were riding on a city bus in Hong Kong. Koushirou pinched his chin deep in thought.
"This is just as what I had expected. That fits the information Jou-san had given to me from his brother, Kido Shin-san yesterday. I'm trying to understand how Taichi-san returned to the Real World after being deleted and I had cross referenced with what Ichijouji-kun had told me about the Vault which stores the Legacy of the Chosen Children, Taichi-san shouldn't have lost all of his memories after his deletion in the Digtial World. At most, he'll only lose those in the Digital World but losing all is not possible." Koushirou shared the information with Hikari to her horror.
"His report showed that he was found unconscious three years ago near the campground the seven of us were in three years ago. There were markings found around his neck and that deprived his brain of oxygen landing him in coma for a period of eight months and resulted in his amnesia. We're careless. We should have looked around the campground after returning through the portal in Odaiba." Koushirou berated himself. He was too focused in blaming Yamato, Jou and Mimi for what had happened. It had never occurred to them to investigate the areas around the campground after their mission. They would have found Taichi way before this if we were united enough.
Nevertheless, he needed her help to watch out for Taichi in case he recalled anything which might lead them to the real evil Qinglongmon might be referring to. It was also likely that they might be after his life should they realized he had survived.
*24th December 2006, Odaiba*
Yamato visited the florist to place his order of flowers for Sora. He had prepared a series of programmes tonight for their anniversary. Takeru was looking bored following his brother around. Yamato had grown taller over the years, other than that there was not much change in his hairstyle and his style of dressing. Similar to Yamato, Takeru had grown taller except that he no longer wore his hat around.
"I can't believe you failed to win Hikari-chan's heart."Yamato muttered. He did not know how to advise Takeru actually when he came to him as Sora was the one who took the initiative in their relationship.
"Daisuke-kun can't believe it either. He actually assisted me in my confession but we failed anyway." Takeru confessed.
"Daisuke-kun huh? He has matured, isn't it?" Yamato asked as he had not seen his successor for months as they were all busy with their own lives. "I know he has a crush with Hikari-chan and I even have to give him tips in order to get him to help me back then. I seriously thought you had lost out to him because of me but it seems like she isn't ready."
"Hikari-chan like her life this way. She didn't want to commit." Yamato placed his hands on Takeru's shoulder. "I can't say anything else other than to give her time and don't give up. She didn't reject you directly which means you may still have a chance with her. For Daisuke's case, he told me he was rejected directly."
"Yes, Oniichan. Thank you for the encouragement. I'll not give up on Hikari-chan. I got to go now. Patamon must be waiting for me by now." Takeru looked at his watch.
"It's the day of your gathering, right? Get going. Send my regards to everyone." Yamato said. Yamato watched his dejected younger brother left. He felt sorry for Takeru but he understood Hikari's standpoint. It would take time.
"It's about time." Yamato realized he had to pick Sora up and rushed off.
"Time really flies. Jou-senpai had managed to get into the medical school and he is on his way of fulfilling his dream to become a doctor while Koushirou is helping my dad on his research of the Digital World while still in the High School. I'm quite sure he's applying to the University of Kyoto so that he can work closely with my dad." Sora commented reminiscing at a photo of Jou messing up Koushirou's hair while posing in Hikari's camera.
"As for Mimi, I'm just surprised that Mimi is still unattached. Miyako-chan told me she was waiting for her ideal boyfriend and she knows how he's like and she calls herself a prophet." Sora added when her eyes fell on a photo of Mimi who practically jumped on Taichi from his back startling him. She gave a gentle smile as her finger traced over the photo of Taichi.
"Hikari-chan, it's about time for the gathering. Daisuke and the rest are waiting. Ichijouji will be meeting us today too." Tailmon reminded noting her disgusted expression for a moment upon hearing Ken's name. Hikari jumped up in surprise after looking at her watch.
"It's this late already." She cried. "Sora-san, I'll send you the photos tomorrow." Hikari said while heading to the door hurriedly.
"Don't worry about it. Miyako-chan says she will get the photos from you as she is helping me to compile into a portfolio." Sora replied standing at the door.
"Give my regards to them, to your parents and to Taichi." Hikari nodded.
Daisuke was sitting outside the railway station glancing his surrounding impatiently. Like Takeru, he still looked similar as when he was four years ago except that he was taller. Iori on the other hand, had changed his hairstyle to something similar to Takeru.
"Will you stop that, Daisuke-san." Iori sighed hugging Upamon on his lap. "Ichijouji-san will be here today. He said it in his e-mail right?"
"I know but I can't help feeling annoyed that he always leaves me out in his mission in the Digital World for the past four years. We are jogress partner, isn't it?" Daisuke complained with V-mon shaking his head.
"Daisuke-kun can't help him. Your D3 is unlike his. The first of a batch created." V-mon explained.
"V-mon, can't you console me a bit." Daisuke shook his partner who was sitting on the bench vigorously and dropped his head in defeat. "Both you and Wormmon can achieve Ultimate form together, remember."
"Daisuke, don't worry, he's attending an important annual meeting with you in March, right? It's something he can't leave you out from, as you are the leader of the Chosen Children in this dimension." Iori reminded him. "And you mentioned the meeting this year is critical."
"Yeah, I also need to find something to impress Akashi-san." Daisuke switched the subject. "Don't you think he's similar to me?" Iori sighed in defeat.
*Area equivalent to Hong Kong of the Digital World*
A dragon warrior Digimon was engaging in a battle with a Digimon lurking in the darkness.
"Dramon killer!" The warrior Digimon finished off the dark Digimon which reverted into a Digiegg. A human and another Digimon arrived. The boy raised his D3 at the Digiegg and chanted something. The Digiegg disappeared after his chant.
"Sealing completed." He said in relief. With that the two Digimon reverted to their Child form.
"Good job, Wormmon. Good job Agumon." The boy removed his hood and a blue-haired boy was revealed as Ichijouji Ken.
"Ichijouji!" A voice was heard across a distance when another boy of his age came running towards him with his twin Digimon.
"I'm done here." Ken reported. Looking at the other boy, he knew he was done with his as well. The boy removed his hood as well revealing himself as Wallace.
"Wallace, I'm starving." Lopmon complained.
"I guess evolving into Ultimate will take a lot more energy." Wallace remarked at Lopmon who ate a lot more than Terriermon.
"Ichijouji, you had done a good job today. I guess darkness is no longer as scary to you as before." Wallace looked at Ken but frowned when his gaze fell on an angry looking orange lizard.
"Are you always this angry?" Wallace asked.
"It had been four years, and we have yet to locate Digiegg." The Digimon replied defiantly.
"Wallace." Ken shook his head reminding him not to provoke him. Both Ken and Wallace did not have much change like the rest. They grew taller and became much more charming.
"It's because of that, we unveiled our new mission to prevent darkness from evolving. If we don't do it, they will become stronger and eventually overpower us. Even though we have many Chosen Children all over the world, those who can really fight against the darkness are only us who are involved and were affected by the power of darkness before." Wallace narrated. "I wouldn't have a chance to step into the Digital World to have a look of Chocomon and Gumimon's homeland."
"It's only our Digivice which has the power to seal the Digieggs infected by darkness." Ken added glancing at his D3.
The two of them would continue the battle to prevent the birth of Digiegg which came from darkness to seek vengeance.
"Alright, time to go. It's Christmas Eve and you have a meeting with them right?" Wallace reminded Ken as he placed both his arms behind his own neck.
"Miyako must have become prettier now?" Wallace commented. Ken could not help but to feel a little jealous. Daisuke had warned him about this guy who was really good at flirting with girls.
"I know Miyako is your girlfriend now. I won't take her away from you unless you mistreat her." Wallace replied in response of his reaction. "I wonder if Hikari is taken by the way." Wallace changed his target. Ken looked a little crestfallen upon hearing her name which did not escape Wallace's eyes.
"See you again soon." Wallace changed the subject heading to a portal in the opposite direction. Ken was about to follow him when he recalled something.
"Oh yeah, you can open a portal with your Digivice too." Ken realised. Wallace smiled at Ken's words.
"You are too kind."
"Wallace, time to go home before your mother start to scream." Terriermon tugged on his pants. Wallace had grown tall enough that Terriermon could no longer reach for his hands.
Wallace blushed and reminded his Digimon to not tease him in front of others. Ken and Wormmon smiled at their interaction. With that the two boys headed separate ways.
On their way back, Ken patted the orange lizard Digimon, Agumon's head reassuring that everything was going to be alright.
"We'll find that Digiegg and seal it, I assure you of that." Ken said reassuringly. Agumon nodded with a fierce determination in his eyes.
Agumon swore he would defend the Digital World and the World Taichi was residing in.