The two dragons swoop low over the small village, mechanical hands firing salvo after salvo into the village. Their laughter is cold and cruel, echoing in the spaces between each new explosion. A small figure catches one of the dragon’s attention, standing still in the midst of those running and buildings exploding. He swoops low, preparing to fire. Instead, he skims the buildings, arcing back up into the air.
“It’s a human!” He calls to the other dragon, almost his twin. The grey and blue dragon swoops down to look at the figure standing in the sand.
“It is a human, brother.” He hisses back, metal wings barely flapping to keep himself aloft.
“Master will want to hear about this.” The orange dragon starts to rise higher in the air. The other pauses, firing a final salvo into the village before following his brother. The human stays standing in the middle of the destruction, her heart hammering in her chest. She had found herself unable to move when the dragons had buzzed her head.
“Seline!” The call of her name finally breaks her mental grip on the image of the dragons flying away. She hurries along, picking up a couple small creatures that she can manage.
“I’m coming!” Strands of hair stick to her sweaty face. She chases after a humanoid creature, continuing to carry the smaller creatures. As she catches up, she can see the frown in the humanoid creature’s eyes.
“You’re lucky Megadramon or Gigadramon didn’t kill you.” Seline hangs her head, face burning in embarrassment.
“I’m sorry.” Her voice is quiet as she speaks. A few other creatures catch up to them, one being a very large red dinosaur, the second being an insect-like green and black humanoid creature. Both are carrying various other creatures, neither as few as she’s carrying. It makes her feel embarrassed even more so for being of much less use than they are. The insect looks to her, no expression to be read on its face. Seline gulps internally, offering a nervous smile to the creature. Its head tilts very slightly before it nods in response, turning its attention back towards their leader.
Her mind drifts over the time she’s already been trapped here. It had started innocently enough, seeing something glittering, and deciding that she was interested in it. The glittering thing in the air swirled unnaturally. She couldn’t stop herself from touching it, like something had pulled her mentally to do it. She had woken up with a mouthful of sand and a group of strange creatures circled around her. Sorcermon, the one currently leading them, had helped her adjust as best as he could. However, there’s only so much one could do in a few weeks.
As it was, she’s still trying to find a way home, despite Sorcermon stating that she had been technically digitized and transported to a different world.
“Seline.” She jumps, hurrying to catch up to Sorcermon, having fallen behind. She can see the frown in his eyes again as he looks at her. She’s certainly not what he hoped for in terms of a ‘Chosen One’ based on how he’s looking at her.
“I’m sorry…” Seline stares at the sand, keeping herself focused on keeping up with the group instead of the past.
“It’s all right.” The buzzing voice makes her look up at the insect-humanoid beside her. Her throat dries out, noticing that he’s simply looking forward, not even looking at her. She forces herself to nod, continuing to walk along with them as she returns to staring at her feet dragging through the loose sand on top of the hard-packed layer.
“Master Sytrimon, we bring you news from the village.” Gigadramon growls out, sliding into the darkened room. Black flames lick at the air from shelled sconces, the center of each flame a dark shade of purple.
“Is that so Gigadramon?” The fallen angel digimon turns, black armor reflecting any of the light in the room, his eight golden wings unfurling to their full size. Glowing purple eyes show in a slit in the helmet, looking from Gigadramon to Megadramon. “What sort of news from such a tiny place?” His voice rolls, swirling through the air like siren song.
“There was a human in the village, Master,” Megadramon reports. “We destroyed it as asked however.”
“It looked like a female. She will likely be fleeing with any remaining survivors.” Gigadramon adds, bowing his head to the fallen angel digimon.
“Are you certain it was a human?” Sytrimon questions, a hand on the whip of black energy at his side. Megadramon shudders at the sight. Gigadramon draws back very slightly.
“Yes sir.” Both large dragons reply at the same time.
“Hm.” His armored hand drops away from the whip.
“We brought you the information as fast as we could, Master.” Megadramon bows his head, large yellow eyes staying fixed on Sytrimon however.
“Didn’t even finish destroying the village.” Gigadramon winces at the statement as Sytrimon’s eyes snap to him. “We feared it might kill the human, and as you asked us to report any human sightings to you, we did not wish to take actions without your permission.”
“A valid fear and logical reasoning.” Sytrimon’s gaze travels away, allowing Gigadramon to relax, a sigh almost escaping him.
“Thank you Master.” Gigadramon keeps his voice quiet.
“Bring me the human.” Sytrimon looks between the two dragon digimon. “Mostly unharmed. A few scratches will not matter in the long run, but she must be alive.”
“Yes Master,” Megadramon responds.
“And if you cannot capture her easily to bring her to me, I will simply come to you.”
“Yes Master.” Gigadramon bows to the fallen angel. The two dragons slither back out of the giant room, taking to the sky shortly afterward. Sytrimon steps out of the hall to watch them fly away, giving a low chuckle.
“Your last mission.” He turns on his heel, heading back inside the dark hall.
Seline sits on a large rock, worrying her lip between her teeth. She’s lost in thought, watching the small digimon bounce and play with one another, barely a syllable heard among the group of them. Sorcermon sits nearby, the group resting to gather their strength in the cave system. The large dinosaur is sleeping further away, in a larger section of the caves. The insect digimon had left the caves to find supplies for the group, food and water.
“Seline,” Sorcermon speaks quietly, drawing Seline’s attention, “do you realize why I’m difficult with you?”
“You think I’m one of those Chosen.” Seline’s eyes move down to her sneakered feet.
“You’re a human, here for the first time in years. I’m certain you’re a Chosen One that will fight against and destroy the evil in the digital world.” Sorcermon speaks with more certainty than Seline feels. “Even if you arrived here angry at the world.” She bites her lip deep enough to draw blood, licking at it.
“I still haven’t gotten a digivice.” There’s a short pause, Sorcermon nodding very slowly.
“I am aware of that Seline. You haven’t found your correct partner or proven yourself yet. That’s why you haven’t been gifted one.”
“You told me they were young. I’m much older than then.” Seline frowns, lacing her fingers together. She drags the toe of her shoe through the sand that’s blown into the cavern. “I’m not a child, you keep calling them children. I’m seventeen. Almost an adult in my world.”
“I don’t believe that your age truly matters, Seline.” Sorcermon gives a small chuckle. “I’m sure that the original Chosen were among digimon for many years after they became adults.” Seline purses her lips, attempting to think of a response, continuing to stare down at the floor as she listens to the small digimon play.
“I—I suppose that could be true but they still received their digivice and partner young.” Seline shakes her head softly. “I just don’t—” The world feels like it shakes, startling Seline and shaking some dirt loose from the ceiling.
“Everyone! Get up! Gigadramon and Megadramon are coming!” The Stingmon shouts as it zips through the room, starting to gather up the younger digimon. A Gatomon that had been unconscious originally helps as well.
“This is bad, they’re actually chasing us.” Sorcermon gets to his feet. Seline and Sorcermon start to help before the ground tremors. Everyone freezes, Seline’s heart pounding in her chest, holding a small Botamon to her chest.
“Send the human out!” The booming roar makes Seline’s blood turn to ice in her veins. All attention is suddenly focused on her. After long enough of a silence, an explosion rocks Seline hard enough that she hits the ground, managing to protect the Botamon. She lets it go, hearing the cry of the Tyrannomon from where it had been. She wonders if the ceiling had caved in on the large creature.
“Send it out or we’ll drop the ceiling on you!” The roar shakes the cavern. Seline pulls herself to her feet, trembling softly. Her eyes fix on the opening to the cave. It’s shadowed, like something is leaning over the entrance.
“You cannot.” Sorcermon’s voice draws her attention. He looks stern, but alarmed and frightened at the same time. Seline holds his gaze for only a short time before looking away. The ground shudders again, a chunk of ceiling falling down. Seline’s mind whirls quickly, if she ran out, she would draw their attention away from the others in the cave.
“I’m sorry. I’m not letting them bring the cave down on you.” Seline takes off at a run for the exit, lips set in a grim line. She jumps a larger rock, continuing to push herself hard as she runs as fast as she can.
“Seline!” Sorcermon calls after her. She shuts her eyes as shadows turn into sunlight, blinding her for a second. She blinks rapidly to get her eyes to adjust, continuing to run hard and as fast as she can. Air whips the sand up around her, sand sucking at her feet. She’s thankful for the hardened sand layer below the upper loose sand, at least it gives her decent traction.
“Come on, come on…” She begs under her breath between gasps of air.
“Ooh, a chase!” One dragon hisses, the sound of wings flapping on the air coming to her. A small smile appears on Seline’s lips. She’d lead them away and lose them somewhere, it’s the best plan she has at the moment. The creatures are large enough that they wouldn’t be able to chase her into some of the smaller caverns.
“Come here little human.” The second dragon speaks, sending a shiver through Seline. She keeps running however, legs starting to burn. She skids through the sand, dodging amongst the rocks, starting to look for an exit. All the rocks are solid however, an oncoming rock wall her best hope of escape. She dodges to the side at the sound of something coming in close, purple feathers tickling her head.
“Fuck,” Seline curses, yanking herself back up to her feet. Her feet dig through the sand, searching for purchase. She finds it in the hardened layer of sand, running directly at the rock wall, searching desperately for a hole in it to escape into. One of the dragons drops in front of her, chuckling lowly. Seline turns to head in the other direction, finding her way blocked by the other dragon. Her body tenses, eyes glancing between the two of them as she starts to put her back against a standing pillar not far from the wall.
“While that was a lovely chase,” Megadramon starts, wings flapping slowly.
“We have orders to take you to our Master,” Gigadramon finishes the sentence. Seline stays silent, looking between the two of them. Gigadramon draws closer, giving a low chuckle. Seline’s eyes scan over the dragon, the sense of awe that had frozen her in the town coming over her again. She holds her breath, heart hammering harder against her rib cage. “Why don’t you make this easy?”
“We don’t mind hurting you if you’d be difficult.” Megadramon draws closer. Seline presses her back harder into the stone pillar, lip lifting into a feral snarl. At this distance, they’d have her if she took off running again, especially with the lack of places to go. Her body shakes, adrenaline still pumping through her veins. Then she falls still, staring at a spot not far behind the two. Golden wings surround a black armored figure appearing from a black area coming into existence in the air.
“Gatomon got your tongue, human?” Megadramon chuckles at Gigadramon’s question, starting to wind his tail around to grab Seline. Sytrimon slowly comes into existence behind the pair of dragons. Seline jams her back into the rock despite chunks digging painfully into her back. Sytrimon draws the giant sword from his back in a slow motion, hovering not that far behind the two.
“L—L…” Her throat closes on the warning. Gigadramon’s head tilts, seeming to be trying to figure out the half statement. He’s turning to look behind him when the purple sword, glowing with energy slashes across the two dragons. Both scream, white energy appearing around them. They shrink down, two small dark colored creatures dropping from the spaces where the two large dragons had been. Seline instinctively lunges forward, catching both of them before they can hit the ground. One of the two gives a small noise, the one with orange markings.
“I suppose it didn’t come up before.” Sytrimon chuckles, sheathing the sword. “You would just be in my way, since you’ve served your purpose.”
“M—Master…” The blue-marked one manages out. Sytrimon ignores them, eyes fixing on Seline, causing a shiver to run up her spine.
“What a lovely human.” With one hand on the whip of energy at his side, he stretches a clawed hand out for hers. She can imagine the smile on the lips underneath the armor helmet, just based on the glowing purple eyes she can see. “Come with me.” Seline stares at the hand, eyes traveling down to the two small creatures in her arms. “Drop them and I’ll get rid of them. They’re useless after locating you, my dark Tamer.” Big yellow eyes look up at her, the expression unreadable. An image of one of the small digimon from the village comes to mind, replacing the image of the former dragons in her arms.
“N—No.” Her voice trembles, eyes slowly traveling back up to the fallen angel digimon.
“No?” There’s a short pause.
“No.” Seline starts to shift to the side, around the rock pillar. She keeps the two small digimon tight to her body. Sytrimon’s eyes narrow, the whip coming up. Seline jerks backwards as she attempts to dodge away, stumbling over her own feet. The whip snaps around her neck, pulling taut. The energy whip cuts into her skin at the same time it starts to choke her.
“I see. You’re a Chosen. I’ll simply have to do away with three of you.” Sytrimon pulls the whip even tighter, Seline shutting her eyes against the pain. “It’s a shame. I lost my generals for nothing.” Holding the two small digimon with one arm, she reaches up, grabbing the whip and attempting to get herself free. The whip cuts hard into her hand, drawing blood that drips into the sand. Blood runs from her neck down to soak into her shirt collar. Her vision darkens as her breath is cut off, pain radiating from the wounds.
“Let her go!” A burst of light breaks into her vision. She drops to the ground, coughing.
“Meddling angels.” Seline drags herself back up to her feet, holding the former dragons to her with both arms again. A MagnaAngemon stands between her and Sytrimon, lips set in a grim line with his weapons at the ready. Sytrimon's whip slips up to become an energy blade from one arm, his arms crossing and it spreading to become a second blade on his other arm.
“Run, human.” The angel speaks with urgency. Seline stays for a second as Sytrimon takes a fighting position. Something tugs at her to stay. A glance down at the small digimon in her arms, reminds her of her situation. She stumbles as she turns to run away. The clash of battle comes immediately afterward, light flashing over her back as she continues to run away. Something burns across her back, Seline giving a gurgling noise in pain from the burn.
She runs as hard as she can, gasping for breath, choking on blood occasionally. Keeping the two former dragons pressed against her, despite the blood making holding onto them hard. The sound of the battle is far, far behind her as exhaustion takes hold. She stumbles finally, landing hard in the sand, still protecting the two small digimon. She lays still, letting them both go as she gasps for breath, hearing a wheezing noise from her throat.
“You saved us. Why?” The orange-marked digimon questions. Seline tiredly looks towards the two small creatures. They’re a small distance away, both looking at her with yellow eyes.
Seline starts to drag herself up, attempting to respond. Instead, a gurgling noise comes out along with a whistling noise. She feels up to her throat, blood coating her hand as she feels out the wound, a hole through the front of her throat. In her adrenaline rush, she feels the pain but not nearly as much as the damage to her throat would make her think. More blood drips into the sand.
“Home is nearby Mega. We could help her.” The blue-marked digimon looks to the other, seeming to be considering things. There’s a short pause. Seline closes her eyes, the sun and sand feeling warm on her skin. The amount of blood coming from her neck is frightening, her hand holding onto the spot as if to stem the flow.
“She’s going to die if we leave her.” The first speaks from a much closer distance. “Go home and get help, Giga.” Seline opens her eyes, reaching out with one bloodied hand to shove the closer one after the other. The blue-marked creature is running away, bounding across the sands. The orange looks surprised at the movement. “Stay still, conserve your energy.”
Seline shoves at him weakly again, eyes traveling to where they had come from. Far away, one can barely make out at this distance dark and light shooting up into the sky. The two digimon are still fighting, but the dark is starting to overwhelm the light. Closing her eyes, she shoves harder at the former Megadramon.
“You saved us, we’re going to save you.” She feels him shove back at her hand. She’s too exhausted to open her eyes however, letting her arm go limp. The warmth of the sand envelopes her arm, sticking to the blood on it. “Hey, hey, stay awake.” He bumps her head.
With a gurgle, Seline tries to reopen her eyes, barely managing to force them open. A pair of bright yellow eyes are looking into hers. She blinks very slowly. It feels like the life is being pulled out of her body. She wonders if the blood trail would lead Sytrimon right to her.
“There we go, stay here.” He stays quiet for a second. “My brother and I are Hopmon currently. We used to be Megadramon and Gigadramon. You can call us Mega and Giga.” Seline forces a small smile to her face, eyes closing again. “Hey, stay awake.” He bumps her again, his voice sounding surprisingly far away.
Her consciousness starts to fade despite the small digimon attempting to keep her awake, her other hand falling away from her throat. The sand is warm underneath her, Mega’s bumping only a small annoyance. Even that starts to fade away, her mind drifting to hopes about the two small digimon escaping still from the fallen angel digimon coming after them. Her breath grows shallow, thoughts of seeing the two home drifting in and out of her mind.
There’s a flash of light in her vision, a warmth spreading up her arm, across her chest and throughout her body. Her mind continues to drift, going to Sorcermon and the others hiding in the cave, hoping that they’re all right. Cold creeps into her senses, slowly taking over. Then there’s nothing.