Dante's Little Apple Surprise

by Tatsurou

Shut Up!

Dante made his way further up the Tower, clearing puzzles and slaying monsters as he went. Much to his frustration, Agni and Rudra insisted on giving Applejack a continuous commentary regarding their journey, including the names of various monsters Dante fought, items he collected, and the chambers they went through, until he felt like he was going to scream in frustration. What made it worse, though, was how much Applejack was enjoying their commentary. Every time he tried to tell the swords to stop talking, AJ would punch him in the back of the head, or bite his ear, or swing Cerberus threateningly as he shouted the target he would be aimed at. While he could take those blows, if he tried to push on the subject, AJ would start to cry...and then Agni, Rudra, Cerberus, and - seemingly - even the monsters of the Tower would frown judgmentally at him for making her cry until he relented. As a result, he was stuck with a constant stream of endless narration.

This was not to say their commentary was entirely useless. In the Trial of Technique, they provided cues as to the passage of the spikes erupting in waves from the walls so Dante could more easily time his movements past them. Not that Dante would admit he needed the assistance.

After also clearing the Trial of the Warrior - which was more tedious than difficult, having to constantly pause to reactivate the sigils that disabled the monsters protective auras - he returned to the Mute Goddess's Chamber and placed the three stones he had acquired from the trials in the statue. The first two resulted in the statue firing a beam of energy that cleared the path forward, while the third caused the statue's inner mechanisms to fold it inward, lowering the beam emission point into reach, revealing it to be a demonic gun. Taking it from the statue, Dante examined it for a time.

"This is Artemis!" Agni informed him. "It is a gun of the demon world!"

"It discharges arrows concentrated with demonic energy!" Rudra added.

Dante continued to turn the weapon over in his hands. "Interesting grip," he commented at last. On an impulse, he handed it up to Applejack. "Think you can use it?" he asked jokingly.

Curious, Applejack reached over with her hoof, slipping it into the gun's grip. It promptly molded to fit her hoof. Smiling, Applejack pointed off towards a wall, and Artemis launched a highly charged arrow.

"Impressive," Dante commented dryly.

"That was not just demonic energy!" Agni announced in amazement.

"Indeed!" Rudra agreed. "While Artemis' demonic nature made it shape itself to Applejack's hoof, the mystic uplink to allow shots to be fired based on thought impulse caused its demonic energy to join with her innate mystical energy."

"Is that a good or a bad thing?" Dante asked.

"For fighting demons? Very good!" Agni announced. "Few will have a defense for the mix of energies!"

"For other targets? Unknown!" Rudra added. "We are unable to fully analyze Applejack's mystical nature.

Applejack, for her part, gurgled happily and started firing off more arrows.

"Well, any advantage is a good one," Dante decided. "At least it doesn't shout something every time she pulls the trigger."

"Pshew! Pshew!" Applejack announced as she fired more arrows.

Groaning, Dante continued along the path.

As Dante stepped outside, he sensed something unexpected. Reaching out an arm, he caught the motorcycle Lady from the bottom of the tower by her booted foot as she fell head first towards the ground. She promptly pointed a pair of revolvers at his chin. "Well, well," he said in amusement. "This is my kind of rain. No wonder the sky looks so funny today," he joked.

"Very unusual!" Agni agreed. "Is not the song, It's Raining Men?"

"She is Man!" Rudra pointed out. "She is merely a female of the species."

"But the song refers specifically to the masculine gender!" Agni argued. "She is Woman!"

"No balls!" Cerberus agreed.

Dante groaned, putting his hand to his face. Applejack giggled, sticking her head over Dante's shoulder to wave at the Lady.

The Lady, for her part, lowered her guns. "You can put me down now," she grimaced.

Smiling, Dante set her down on the platform, letting her get to her own feet. "At your service," he said jokingly.

Stretching out of her carry straps, Applejack reached out and booped the Lady's nose with her hoof. The Lady, for her part, momentarily smiled softly before returning the favor, making AJ giggle happily.

Dante managed a smirk. "Like her?" he asked. "Maybe you might want to take care of-YOWCH!"

Applejack, recognizing what Dante had been about to suggest, had promptly seized his earlobe with her teeth and yanked hard.

The Lady chuckled. "Seems to me she's already pretty attached to you," she joked, turning to leave.

"Now now, what's your rush?" Dante asked, dancing around into her path. "I did just save you from a grisly fate, after all."

"I had it under control," she countered.

"I'm sure you did," Dante teased.

"Brother!" Agni spoke up. "The young Master's pheromones indicate he wishes to mate with the female!"

"You are correct!" Rudra agreed as Dante groaned. "As good hosts, we must facilitate his amorous endeavors! The Old Master would wish that of us!"

"Indeed!" Agni concurred. Privately, Dante agreed that his old man would want them embarrassing him as he tried to get anywhere with a pretty girl. "How shall we facilitate?"

"Perhaps some appropriate music?" Rudra suggested.

"Capitol idea!" Agni concurred. "Have you a song in mind?"

"Indeed I do!" Rudra proclaimed. "Cerberus! You shall accompany us musically!"

Agni, Rudra, and Cerberus then began to perform an acapella of Kiss the Girl. Dante groaned, burying his face in his hands as Applejack bobbed her head back and forth to the tune of the music, clapping out the beat.

The Lady chuckled again. Leaning in, she gave Applejack a kiss on the forehead that made her giggle. "Sorry, my life's crazy enough as is without joining this crazy train," she said, turning to leave. Dante just groaned again in despair.

As Lady left, Agni spoke up. "Do you think we succeeded, brother?"

"I do not know!" Rudra proclaimed. "Applejack, what are your thoughts?"

"Bye Mama!" she called, waving to the door Lady had already left through.

"Success!" Agni proclaimed.

"Indeed!" Rudra agreed. "...young Master? Why are you banging your head against the wall? Ours make much more effective hammers!"

Dante merely groaned in response.

"...Balls..." Cerberus appropriately commented.