• Published 30th Nov 2016
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Equestria Girls: Digital Destiny - EquestrianTwist



When the girls of Canterlot High are pulled into a strange new world, what awaits them on the other side? Are these new children the heroes this world seeks? Do they have what its takes to save the Digital World?

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The Hunter

She didn’t want to admit it, but the Demidevimons she was chasing were a lot faster then she first expected. She could have placed blame on the fact that they could fly while she was forced to travel by tree, but she knew that was no excuse. Her pride came from a proud lineage, and none of her ancestors ever let the advantages of other digimon get in the way of their quests. If she wanted to prove herself at all worthy of her family’s name, then she couldn’t afford to be anything less than the noble lioness she was born to be.

Even though she was a tiny thing, no bigger than the smallest cub as her father put it, she knew she was nothing less than the fastest beast on island, even being able to outrun the ferocious Lynxmon on occasion without her father’s assistance. That still didn’t mean she wasn’t immune to surprises however.

A large beast leaped from the branches directly in her path forcing her to skid to a stop as beast landed in front of her. Her golden coat and the red tuft of hair on her head stood on end as she crashed into the beast’s leg. She screamed and jumped back in surprise, only to look up and see a digimon she know far better than anyone else.

“Liollmon, your late for training.” The large digimon was a humanoid creature with a similar coat and color to Liollmon’s own. A flowing mane of blond hair circled around the digimon’s head, and framed his appropriately as it directed all focus to his piercing blue eyes. “These were the eyes of a warrior”, she remembered him saying a long time ago. “The eyes of a mon who had seen too many battles to ever care about being part of one again.” It definitely showed, his body was covered in scars, and the sword hilted on the back of his black pants showed ware in even in the hilt from previous use.

“Apologizes father, but there was an innocent in danger that drew away my focus.” The lion digimon turned to see where his daughter was looking. When he saw the Demidevimon his lips pursed in thought. “Hmm… based on the distance of your query, you seem to have been following them steadily, but are focusing too much on stealth. If you had ran at full speed they would have noticed you, but you would have been able to catch them before they could escape.”

“I’m sorry father.” Liollmon relented.

“Do not apologize, learn. Be better, and be ready for when similar situations arise. As for the situation now.” He grabbed Liollmon by the scruff of her neck, then turned back towards the Demidevimon. Reeling back, her father launched her forward like a pitched baseball. But before she passed by the side of his head, he spoke to her. “You made the choice to save that innocent, Follow through with it.”

Liollmon flew through the air like a javelin, her front and back legs pointed out in front and behind her like her father had taught when pouncing an enemy. She landed on the demidevimon grasping Applejack’s left arm. “What the…” the Demidevimon screamed. “GET IT OFF! GET IT OFF!” He released Applejack as he tried to get free from Liollmon. Seeing her chance Liollmon leapt onto Applejack, causing the one holding her right arm to let go due to the added weight. “Seriously!?” the second Demidevimon shouted at the first. “I was being attacked.” The first one whined.

“No, this is an attack.” The two heard a roar from the trees below.

They both screamed in terror. “LEOMON!”

“FIST OF THE BEAST KING!”

A ball of orange energy shaped-like a lion’s head shot out of the beast man’s fist and flew through the air right into frightened Demidevimons’ faces. What resulted was an explosion that sent the digimon flying like cannonballs into the depths of the forest.

Leomon folded his arms in front of his chest as he watched the demon digimon soar away. “Never did care for those black birds.” He searched the sky for Liollmon. When he found her, she was attached to the humon’s back and was spreading out the girl’s limbs with her own as they both back first towards the ground. They weren’t falling any slower, but thanks to their positioning, they weren’t falling any quicker with air catching on their bodies. The faintest hint of a smile appeared on Leomon’s face. “That’s my girl.”

Leomon leapt underneath where Liollmon would have landed, and caught her and the unconscious humon in his arms. Liollmon let go of the humon’s back and landed on the branch below her.

“So how’d I do, father?” She asked, a faint hint of pride present in her voice.

The corner of Leomon’s mouth turned upwards. “Your form needs some work.” He did however pat Liollmon on her head, which brought ot a smile and a laugh from the younger digimon.

******
Applejack awoke to the smell of a smoldering campfire. She groaned, “My head hurts.” She then started to stretch her arm, “Make that my everything.”

“Take it easy, you fell from a sky based portal from the Human world to the Digital world, landed in a tree,and almost got kidnapped by a pair of Demidevimons before falling into my father’s arms.” Liollmon explained as Applejack’s vision came through. She stared in confusion at digimon upon catching sight of her. “I’m sorry that my have been a little fast, I am Liollmon and what is your name, human.”

“Um… Applejack.” Applejack said as she nervously lifted her hand towards the lioness in front of her.

Liollmon could tell that Applejack was nervous, so in an attempt to comfort her, she laid upon the ground and rolled onto her back. “See I trust.” she explained.

Applejack was a bit baffled by the gesture, but she had seen her dog Winona do the thing same many time before. She wondered if Liollmon was expecting the same sort of response. Hesitantly, Applejack moved her hand and began scratching Liollmon’s belly.

Liollmon was shocked by the action. “What are you..?” She suddenly began to purr as the scratching began to feel rather nice.

Applejack couldn’t keep herself from giggling. “You like that don’t you. Who’s a good kitty? Who is? Who is?” She joked.

“I’m not interrupting anything, am I.” A stoic, yet forceful voice came from behind Applejack. She turned to see the larger lion digimon staring down at her with a steely-eyed gaze. Applejack felt like she was just caught fooling around before her prom night.

“Dadd-Father!” Liollmon corrected herself. She turned herself over in embarrassment. “I didn’t expect you back so soon. This is Applejack.”

Applejack nervously waved at the lion man. “H-Howdy, sir.”

Leomon didn’t answer, instead throwing the firewood he was carrying on to the campfire making it burn brighter. It was at this point, Applejack noticed the kettle of soup simmering over the fire. It must have been stewing for awhile because he was already spooning some into three clay bowls he had hiding by the fire. “You have been through quite the ordeal. Your body is bruised and beaten, you need to regain your strength. Eat this, Applejack.”

Applejack took the bowl as Leomon handed the second to Liollmon, who began to slurp it up readily. Applejack glanced down at the creamy broth before bring up to her mouth. She found it hard to swallow, but forced herself to do so nevertheless.

“Gee, that’s some… real tasty stew ya got there.” Leomon glared at her. She could tell he knew she was lying. She realized she couldn’t keep her opinions quite, so she decided to instead ask the question that was on her mind. “What’s in it?”

“Hunting was poor today. So we had to settle for some Kunemon and couple root vegetables we found around the forest.” Leomon explained as he guzzled his own soup.

“And a Kunemon is?” Applejack asked, afraid to hear the answer.

“A larva digimon known to electrocute or poison their prey.” Liollmon explained. “They however are incredible source of protein when other food sources are scarce. Do not be afraid to eat it. Father has mastered the art of removing the non-edible parts of the digimon.”

Applejack felt her stomach do a flip as she looked again at her soup. As politely as she could manage, she placed the bowl down beside her and away from the two digimon’s sight. “Where am I?”

“The Digital World, File Island.” Liollmon said as she got to her feet. “You fell from a portal from your world to ours.”

“Ah got that part when you said it the first time.” Applejack attempted to raise to her feet, but back onto her bum when her legs proved too weak to stand. “Ah thank ya for savin’ me. But Ah have to get movin’. My friends fell through the same portal as Ah did, and Ah don’t want to risk them runnin’ into any danger without me bein’ there to help ‘em out.”

Liollomon narrowed her brow and began to contemplate the farm girl’s words. “So your arrival does coincide with the ancient legends. This could be more serious than we thought, father.” Leomon nodded. “How many humans would you say came through the portal to the digital world with you?”

Applejack shook her head in confusion. “Uh… at most eight, Ah think? But why are you asking? Why’s us bein’ here so serious?”

Liollmon turned to Leomon, as if asking him for permission to tell Applejack their story. Leomon said nothing and rolled his wrist in response, urging Liollmon to continue. She turned back to Applejack.

“As you know me now, most would call me a common Liollmon. But centuries ago in a past life, I was known throughout the digital world as Leopardmon, the Strategist of Truth. I was one of King Drasil’s Royal Knights, and it was my job to protect the digital world, alongside my brothers in arms, from evil digimon who seeked to upturn it’s balance. A thousand years ago, the digital world was thrown into the thralls of a terrible war, that pit against each other the harmonious forces of Yggdrasil and the wicked might of Seven Great Demon Lords and their armies. The war lasted for what seemed as long as its title described. It wasn’t until humans were introduced to the fight, and offered their aid in the form of digivolving our younger troops, that my brothers and I were able to make headway towards victory.”

A forlorned sigh escaped from her lips before she continued. “I was slain in a sneak attack by a Diaboromon before I could see the end of the war. But thankfully he had missed my digicore, allowing me to recycle my data over time, until the day father discovered my digiegg resting upon the shore.”

“A channel within the net sea must have pushed her off course instead of towards the Village of Beginnings. I was reluctant, but she would not have survived if I didn’t place her under my care.” Leomon proaded the fire with a stick to move the wood around and keep it from going out.

Applejack was taken back by the story. “Your story sounds an awful lot like another story this digimon called Dorumon told me.”

Leomon barely batted an eye, while Liollmon was completely aghast. “So you’ve met a Dorumon, did you?” Leomon continued in his calm tone.

“Yeah, but he didn’t remember nearly as much as Liollmon does. All this happenin’ at the same time is a pretty rare coincidence, huh?” Applejack asked.

“There is no such thing as coincidences.” Leomon threw away his stick into the brush. He turned to Liollmon. “It would seem the day you have foretold me about has finally come true.” He raised to his feet. “Go into the forest and collect me some medical herbs, what ever verity you can find. I’ll look after our guest.”

Liollmon nodded. “Yes father.” Before rushing off.

Leomon kicked some sand onto the fire before turning towards Applejack when it was extinguished. He walked over towards Applejack. “Strip.” He commanded.

“E-Excuse me?” Normally Applejack would raise a fit if anyone told her to do that, but the way the lion man was staring at her told her if she raised her voice even the slightest pitch higher, there would be major repercussions. She decided to remain at her current tone to avoid angering him.

“You were hurt after your fall, and your ordeal with the Demidevimon did you no additional favors.” He kneeled down to look her in the eye. “I need to check your body for injuries to see what medicines I’ll need to create.”

“Ah-Ah can d-do it my-myself, you know.” Applejack explained.

Leomon pulled out his sword from the back of his belt. Applejack gulped. “Time is of the essence. If the Demidevimon know you’re here, then it’s likely powerful digimon know you are here a well. We need to seek out your friends and find shelter before we are spotted.” His eyes narrowed as he pointed the tip of the blade at her chest. “Now take off your clothes quickly. Or are you gonna force me to peel you out of them myself.”

Applejack shook her head in fear. “No sir.”

“Good answer.”

******
“Invisible Snake-eyes.”

A large digimon sitting on a throne of sharpened rock and fossilized bones uttered an attack name that caused his right eye to glow a menacing red. His voice had an eerily calm tone to it, even despite the powerfully low rumble that underlined a sense of foreboding to anyone who heard it. He was not pleased with fact that Devimon had been defeated, but it intrigued him that through his actions, humans had once again been pulled into the digital world.

The Hippogriffmon who had given him the information, suddenly changed shape until a new bipedal digimon was standing in its place. The new digimon’s words sounded meek and eager to please. Even despite being one of his top generals, the digimon was never known to start a task without being given a command. He had no ambition, but he was fiercely loyal, and that only aided in his effectiveness in performing his master’s bidding.

“It gives me no pleasure in telling you that the human and the knight have likely already left the Village of Beginnings by the time I would have arrived here.” The shape-shifting digimon spoke. “I’d hazard a guess they could be almost anywhere on the island by now, given the Radiance’s speed.”

“Ugh, whatever…” A third voice spoke, this one female. The shape-shifter digimon turned his head towards the sounds of clicking heels as they sauntered out from between the stone columns surrounding them. “It doesn’t matter where they run or hide, let’s just torch the place. It’s not like we aren’t going to have free reign to do that anyways when we’re ruling the world.”

“My, my, someone’s acting a bit hhhot-under the collar today. What’s the matter, dearie? Skip breakfast again?” A cheerful new voice came from above them. The two digimon turned their heads upwards, while the third remained transfixed in his own visions. A smiling digimon was floating upside down just above them. The female digimon growled in disdain.

“YOU WANT TO FUCKING GO CLOWN?!” She shouted at the air. “Cause I’m about three seconds away from ripping off your frickin’ face off and makin’ pizza topping!”

“Enough, both of you. Can’t you see that-”

“You shut up too, yes-mon!” She turned her rage towards the meeker digimon. “I swear to the fucking Server Tree, everytime you open your mouth the scent of boot polish on your breath just gets stronger.”

“You swear… to the Server Tree?” The smiling digimon gasped in disbelief. “Our mortal enemy?” He began to chuckle. “My word, blasphemy! And you honestly call yourself a demon lord.”

The female demon lord pulled a pair of pistols out from the holsters in her coat. “THAT’S IT!”

Before she could fire however, the first digimon spoke. “I see a pair of Demidevimon flying out of the forest. They’re on the northeast side of the island. One of you is going to go down there and search for humans. If we’re lucky, the rookie knight will be there as well.”

They turned to see the glow in his eye had faded, and that he was now staring back at them. The floating digimon chuckled again. “Well... since I’m currently not wanted, I’ll go take a look. Besides, I’ve always wondered what color humans bleed. I’ve been told it’s red in color, but you know me, can’t sate my curiosity until I see it for myself. Ta~ta! Try not to get too bored while I’m gone.” He floated upwards into the darkness above until his face vanished completely into the shade. The female digimon growled before reholstering her guns.

“I fucking hate that guy.”

******
Magnamon flew slower then his usual mock speed with Fluttershy and Rarity, as well as their digimon partners, cradled in his arms. He was flying at this slower speed to avoid dropping his new changes, but also because they seemed to have picked up a pursuant.

“Is he still following us?” Magnamon asked.

Kudamon scrambled out of Fluttershy’s arms and up to Magnamon”s back. Some distance behind them, a Demidevimon was struggling to keep up with the golden digimon’s speed. Kudamon shook his head in disapproval. “He is, and he’s not even trying to hide it anymore.”

Rarity leaned out of Magnamon’s arms to glance at their unwanted pursuer. “What even is that ghastly thing? It’s been following us since we left the Hagurumons’ castle. I can’t imagine he has good intentions for us.”

Before Magnamon could answer, something large and red leaped out of the forest canopy and snapped the Demidevimon out of the sky, like a shark catching a bird. Rarity and Kudamon blinked in surprise.

“What was that?” Rarity asked.

Magnamon halted and turned around just in time to see the blur of red fall back through the foliage below. Magnamon too blinked. “Hold on, we’re gonna go check this out.” He began to descend towards where the red creature exited the forest.

Back on the ground, Guilmon landed on his feet and shook it off as if he hadn’t just been thrown dozens of feet in the air. He spat the Demidevimon onto the ground before turning to Veemon. “That was fun, Veemon! Can we do it again?!”
“Maybe later,” Rainbow interrupted. She turned her gaze towards the dazed Demidevimon laying at their feet. “Right now we’ve more important things to take care of.” Veemon cracked his knuckles as he stepped up next to her.

Candlemon grabbed onto the Demidevimon’s head and winded back his arm as he aimed for the branches of a tree.

“Melt Wax!”

The Demidevimon awoke as he realized he was flying upwards. He screamed, just before colliding his face with the bottom portion of a thick bough. The wax thrown with him from Candlemon’s arm wrapped around the bough as he hit, and as he feel back downwards the wax stretched and slow put end to his fall. Before long, the Demidevimon found himself dangling from the top of the tall tree. The humans and their digimon were now staring at eye-level with him as he hung upside down. “Do your worst. You can’t make me talk!” the Demidevimon protested.

Rainbow smirked as she turned her gaze to Pinkie, “Hey remember that time we had Tirek cornered and Sunset insisted we get the bonus objective by making Tirek help us?”

Pinkie’s smile grew impossibly wide. The three digimon looked to Twilight with question marks over their heads. “It’s from a video game.” Twilight explained.

Pinkie pulled a comically large feather out from the depths of her hair, but before she had the chance to use it, the wind began to pick up as if a helicopter was landing nearby. They all turned to see Magnamon land and lower himself to let Rarity, Fluttershy, a gear with a face and weasel on to the ground. “RARITY! FLUTTERSHY!” Pinkie shouted as he jumped tackled the two to the ground.

“Hey Kudamon, I see you finally decided to leave the Village of Beginnings.” Veemon commented as he spotted the pipe fox, “How’s Tinkermon doing?”

“Just fine, considering you’re not there to ogle her anymore.” The weasel chuckled. “I swear you were the most leacherious baby she ever had to take care of. The only mon who was possibly more a handful than you was-”

“Kudamon!” Guilmon shouted as he rushed over.

“Oh no.” Kudamon muttered as he tried to get away. However the red raptor picked up the pipe fox and hugged him tightly. “I missed you so much.” Guilmon said as if he was reunited with a long lost friend.

“Can’t…. Breath… air… Guilmon!” Kudamon strained as he tapped on Guilmon’s arm as if trying to tap out of wrestling.

“Fascinating, five humo… sorry humans, and they each seemed to have paired with five child stage digimon.” Candlemon mused as he watched the groups introductions play on. He turned towards Twilight. “It's almost as if were seeing the fairytales play out before our very eyes.”

Just then there was a sudden silence following two very distinct groans, one from Veemon, the other from Magnamon as both shared a glance.“Oh great, it’s you.” They said in unison.

Rainbow Dash looked between the two glaring digimon, and cocked a brow in confusion. “Uh… you guys know each other or something?”

“By reputation.” Veemon explained. “I don’t know what it is, but I can tell I don’t like the guy.”

“I knew him in a past life.” Magnamon gave his own explanation. “We used to work together a thousand years ago, and even then he was still the same selfish, self-absorbed, at times lewd, braggart that he clearly is now.”

Rainbow suddenly broke out laughing, having known Veemon the longest. “Damn, do you got this guy pegged!”

Veemon growled. “Shut up!” He shouted. “I’ll show you how great I am, the future is mine, Old Mon!” Veemon challenged the Royal Knight.

“Not this again.” Magnamon groaned. All the while Rainbow was snickering at her partner’s situation.

“Gee Dashie, I kinda thought he was talking about you when he started talking about being self-absorbed and braggy.” Pinkie added.

Rainbow suddenly grew silent as Veemon began to laugh. “Shut up!” She shouted.

Magnamon folded his arms before continuing his story. “His name was Ulforceveedramon, the Herald of Fidelity, and he was one the seven Royal Knights lost in the war with the Seven Great Demon Lords.”

Candlemon narrowed his eyes in confusion. “So you’re saying that our Veemon is the reincarnated child form of a one great Royal Knight? Forgive me for saying so, but that seems highly unlikely. After all, there are far more than just one Veemon living in the Digital World. You yourself are a testament to that.”

Magnamon nodded. “That is true, but I can’t fight this feeling in my gut that whatever is going on in digital world currently has something to do with my fallen brethren. Call it a hunch, but I don’t believe of seven humans falling into our world, five of them would just so happenly come across five digimon within the evolutionary lines of the six dead Royal Knights, with another seemingly having a bond with a Dorumon. The evidence is just to strong to simply write this off as a coincidence.”

“The girls have also helped start our digivolutions too.” Guilmon said, “Pinkie-chan was in danger because of a Shellmon, and I was able to save her by digivolving.”

Pinkie then gave her dinosaur a hug, “You’re such a good boy, Guilly.”

“Kudamon evolved to save me from whatever Devimon became,” Fluttershy pointed out. Kudamon tried to dismiss it but he couldn’t help but blush.

“And Harguramon became a truly noble knight when Snimon was attempting to dispatch of me.” Rarity said as she gave the gear a kiss on his forehead which cause him to blush and twiddle his gear-hands.

Rainbow sighed. “Yeah, even Veemon saved my keister from one pissed off Tortomon.” She began to whisper so only Veemon could hear. “Though it was his fault he was pissed at us in the first place!” Veemon scratched the back of his head in embarrassment.

“But Candlemon was a Wizardmon when we first met.” Twilight made clear.

“Well you’ve always been a bit of a unique case in our friendship, Darling.” Rarity pointed out. She then held her chin in thought. “That would leave Applejack and Sunset, and since Sunset was there when Dorumon hatched, they have likely already formed a bond.”

“Which means Leopardmon’s rookie state has likely been found by your remaining friend.” Magnamon mused out loud, as the six other serendipitous meetings made the pattern unmistakable.

“HEY!” The Demidevimon shouted. “WHAT ABOUT ME?! GET ME DOWN FROM HERE! THE GREAT DEMON LORDS WILL NOT LET THIS STAND!”

“Are all of those wretched things like that?”

“Demidevimons are among the lowest level of demon type digimon. They have to have a big bark in order to survive until they mature into their adult forms.” Candlemon pointed out.

“Hold on, Child, Rookie, Adult, what’s with all these titles? Rainbow asked.

“You see Rookie and Child are alternative titles for the same stage, while Adult and Champion are the alternative titles for the next stage which comes about either by age, experience in battle, and such.” Candlemon started. “Most mons uses the terms Rookie and Champion because of the constant conflicts we digimon engage in to survive after we leave the Village of Beginnings. Child and Adult are more archaic terms.”

“YOU’LL BE AN ARCHAIC TERM SOON, WHEN I MAKE YOU HISTORY!” The Demidevimon continued to shout.

Magnamon sighed. “Cut him down. These digimon are usually sent out as scouts and spies, but given how poor he was at hiding from us, I can only assume he’s neither.” Hagurumon nodded before turning towards the wax.

“Darkness Gear!”

A cog shot from the machine digimon’s mouth slicing through the wax and sending the Demidevimon plummeting to the ground. After picking his face up off the ground he began to shake off the wax. “It’s about time!” He complained. “I swear that stuff was starting to get in my nose. You guys could have had your conversation faster, ya know!”

“Watch it.” Rainbow Dash warned. “I play soccer professionally at my school. I know how to use these feet.”

“And I’ve been practicing my head spike.” Veemon added. The two fist bumped upon realizing they were on the same wavelength.

“Just leave us.” Magnamon demanded. “And if you know the Demon Lords, keep this meeting quite. I doubt they be very pleased in knowing you we’re unable to get any prudent information while following us.”

The Demidevimon scrubbed off the rest of the wax. “Yeah, yeah, whatever… I’m going, okay.”

“Before you do, could you maybe tell us a little something about this?” Candlemon reached into his satchel and pulled out the now wrapped piece of corrupt digimetal. Magnamon’s eyes widened in shock.

“Where did you get that?” He questioned, but was unable to be heard with the Demidevimon shouting over him.

“LIKE I’M TELLING YOU SPIT!” He barked. The Demidevimon began to flap his wings, raising himself into the air. “Besides, I have better places to be...” A small smirk spread across his lips. He suddenly swooped down and grabbed Fluttershy by her wrist. “...AND GIFTS TO DELIVER!”

Before anyone could properly react, the Demidevimon lifted Fluttershy a short distance off the ground and began carrying her into the forest. The shy girl screamed.

“FLUTTERSHY!” Kudamon shouted, before quickly sprinting off after his partner. The others were quick to follow, Rainbow even being kind enough to scoop him off the ground without slowing her speed.

The extra weight and additional struggle to keep aloft did not do any favors for the Demidevimon’s speed. Within seconds the group of humans and digimon were already right on his tail, and would likely face the full brunt of their anger if he didn’t think of something fast. That was when he noticed the steep incline right in front of him.

The Demidevimon smirked. He lifted Fluttershy up higher off the ground over the edge of the incline, then let her go. “Watch yourself, that first step is a doozy!” Fluttershy landed on her feet and began rolling down the steep hill.

The Demidevimon took off into the canopy of the trees as Rainbow Dash stopped at the edge of the incline. Kudamon dove off her shoulder and after his human companion. “Fluttershy!”

Veemon soon appeared at her side. “What’s the call, boss lady?” Rainbow only shook her in response.

“You only live once.” She commented, then jumped and began sliding down the hill.

Veemon smiled like a maniac. “Yggdrasil help me. I think I love that woman.” He dove after his friend.

Pinkie grabbed onto Rarity’s wrist. “Come on Rarity, this looks like fun!”

“Pinkie, wait!” Before she could get out another word in edgewise, Pinkie pulled both of them down, causing both to bounce and collide together in large ball of tangled limbs and messy hair.

“Wait for us, Pinkie-chan!”

“I’m coming Ms. Rarity!” Both digimon leaped over the lip of the incline and crashed in dirt. They both began to roll as gravity pulled them down.

Twilight, Candlemon, and Magnamon stopped at the edge of the incline. “There are too many trees in the way, I won’t make it through.” Magnamon explained. “Follow them, I’ll find another way around.” Twilight and Candlemon nodded before jumping down the incline. Magnamon meanwhile took to the air.

******
It wasn’t long before Liollmon returned with the herbs and Leomon was able to grind them into a fine powder for use on Applejack. The girl he was planning to heal meanwhile was curled up against herself to preserve her modesty because she now was only clothed in her underwear and beloved stetson. Leomon poured some excess water he had leftover from making the stew into the powder, before using a stick to mix it into a form of sticky paste.

He got up from where he was seated and walked over towards Applejack, and motioned for her to move her arms and legs aside. Though hesitant, Applejack complied.

“This salve is made of herbs that I've learned can clear up your skin and remove minor injuries. By applying this, we should learn how battered your body has become. If you feel anything worse than the aching you feel currently after applying this salve, it is likely you are suffering from a possible internal injury, which will require a much more drastic form of healing.”

Leomon’s statement made Applejack feel uneasy. “That’s... good to hear.”

Using two fingers, Leomon scooped a small bit of the paste from the bowl it was being held in and slathered it over the bruises covering Applejack’s body. To her surprise, his touch was actually far more gentle then she was first expecting.

Applejack whistled in amazement. “My word, you could lull lambs to sleep with hands like that.”

Despite aiming the comment towards Leomon, Liollmon was the one who replied. “A warrior’s hands have more purpose then just holding a sword.”

Applejack chuckled. “You come up with that yourself?”

“It was a lesson from father. He worded it differently, but I find it easily to remember in this turn of phrase.” Applejack turned to Leomon as if silently asking for confirmation. An affirming nod was all that she received in reply.

Applejack couldn’t help but start chuckling again, and it wasn’t just because Leomon was starting to tickle her while applying the salve. She found it funny how stoic Leomon was, and how eager Liollmon was to please him. It reminded her of Apple Bloom when she was little, and how she would always attempt to help Big Mac with his chores despite being far to small for his work load. Thinking of that reminded her of herself when she was a youngin’, and eager she was to… help her dad.

It had been years since she last thought about him… no, that wasn’t entirely true. Not a day had gone by where her parents weren’t far from her mind. She loved them both dearly when they were alive. Her father strict but fair when it came to running the farm and dealing out punishment. Her mother the opposite, always kind and loving, and always wanting to hear your side of the story. Granny Smith may have been her legal guardian, and she had done a damn good job raising both her and her two siblings, but it was Applejack’s mom and dad who taught her to be the girl she was today through their sayings and beliefs. Funnily enough, she believed their deaths was what actually cemented their lessons into her mind. In respect to them, she had to… wouldn’t be, anything less than the strong, hardy, family-loving girl they expected to be, and whom she was certain they could be proud of, wherever they may be.

It wasn’t until she instinctively sniffled that Applejack realized her eyes were starting to water. Both Leomon and Liollmon noticed this.

“Are you feeling any additional pain?" Leomon asked. His gruff tone never left his voice, but Applejack could tell he was concerned nevertheless.

Applejack shook her head. “No… No… I was just reminded of someone. That’s all.” She wiped her eyes, earning a sympathetic look from Liollmon as she turned towards her father. He glanced back towards her, and with a wordless stare told her not to pry. Liollmon complied.

Silence filled the area as Leomon applied more of the salve, it wasn’t till a sudden burst of screaming hit all three’s ears that they shot to their feet breaking the silence.

“Fluttershy?” Applejack asked. She rushed over towards her clothes and began rapidly dressing. Leomon and Liollmon were quick to follow when Applejack started running towards the source of the screaming.

“Care to fill us in?” Leomon questioned. “Your behavior suddenly seems much more erratic.”

“I know that voice.” Applejack explained. “It belongs to one of my friends. Her name’s Fluttershy and she’s a timid thing, but she hardly screams at anythin’ unless she’s spooked or in real danger.”

The trio reached a small clearing surrounded where the screams sounded like they were coming from. The three turned towards a raised ledge roughly standing a foot taller than Leomon’s head and was connected to the bottom of a steep incline. Without warning, a yellow-skinned girl with pink hair flew off the ledge and landed upon the unsuspecting cowgirl. Both were promptly then dog-piled on by a menagerie of other colorfully skinned girls as they flew off the ledge behind her.

Liollmon was almost to rush over and help the human she had just met, when a group of five unexpected digimon shot off the cliff as well and landed on her in much the same way. Leomon stood in stoic confusion as he upturned an eyebrow at the strange occurrence.

“Huh.” He stated flatly.

The girls were quick to pick themselves up and almost immediately recognized their dazed friend as they got off the ground. “APPLEJACK!” They all shouted, before pulling her up and forcing her into a bone-crushing group hug.

The digimon meanwhile were picking themselves up as well, but were being nowhere near as affectionate. Some of them were apologizing for landing on Liollmon while others groaning after taking their fall. Veemon was to only one left to get off the ground as he was the first to land on Liollmon, making him and her the bottom of the pile.

He placed his hands on the cub digimon’s shoulders as he lifted himself up, giving the two digimon their first good look at each other. Liollmon was blushing due to the close proximity they were sharing, but Veemon, though embarrassed at first, quickly adapted his trademarked flirtatious expression.

“Hey~” He expressed, his voice growing a pitches lower as if to sound more suave then he actually was. Liollmon was having none of it.

She placed her back legs on Veemon’s stomach and pushed upwards and sent him flying into the air, before coming back down and crashing on his head. Liollmon rolled onto her feet and stuck her nose upwards in a high-and-mighty expression, “Hmmph.” Before sauntering over toward Leomon.

Guilmon was quick to rush over and help Veemon to his feet. “I think she likes you, Big Bro.”
He stated with confidence.

Veemon only grumbled in reply. “Thank’s Guilmon, I never would have figured that out on my own.” Veemon muttered sarcastically. Guilmon had a closed-eye smile and gave himself an applause, Veemon could only shake his head.

Rarity was the last to release Applejack from their group’s embrace. “Applejack, I cannot tell you how relieving it is to have found you. We were all beginning to fear the worst.”

“Tweren’t no issue.” Applejack explained, trying her best to relieve her friends of their worry. “The moment the I landed, these two found me and patched me right up.” She motioned her hand towards the two lions. “This here is Leomon and his daughter Liollmon.”

Veemon and Guilmon lead the digimon over towards the rest of the group. Veemon mumbled under his breath. “She’s that mon’s kid.” He rubbed some sweat off the back of his neck. “Sure dodged a bullet with her not liking me.”

Applejack turned her gaze towards group of digimon who were separating and finding a place right next to each of her friends. “Looks like you girls found some new friends as well. Ah’ve gonna guess you all got some pretty crazy stories to tell.”

“...And them some.” Rainbow Dash replied.

“They’re the Royal Knights, I’m sure of it.” Liollmon strode up next to Applejack before taking a seat. She bowed her head. “Greetings Dynasmon, Craniamon, Gallantmon, Kentaurosmon…” Her brows began to furrow as she glared at Veemon. “...Ulforceveedramon.” She addressed him with disdain like she was speaking to a common delinquent.

However as Veemon dipped his head, Applejack noticed something on Liollmon’s face, a slight smile. Applejack had seen that same smile before on Apple Bloom, Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle’s faces when they got into talks about a boy or two, namely that Rumble kid.

“Okay, now Ah’m really confused.” Applejack stated. “These guys can’t be the Royal Knights you told me about, Liollmon. They look nothin’ like knights, especially ones that could help win a thousand year war.” The few annoyed glares she got from her friends’ digimon made Applejack smile apologetically. “No offence.”

“I can give her the rundown if you think we have the time.” Candlemon asked to Twilight. “I am the one most educated in this field of study after all.” Twilight smiled and gave him a nod.

“Alright. But make it quick.” Candlemon nodded back at her in reply before flying over towards Applejack. He raised his hand to offer her a handshake, which Applejack took without hesitation.

“Greetings Applejack. My name is Candlemon, I am apparently the reincarnated child-form of the great Wyvern of Witchelny, or as you may already know him, the Royal Knight Dynasmon.”

Applejack’s eyes became half-lidded as she fixed the waxy digimon with a contemplative expression. “You like to talk a lot, don’t you?” She asked while placing her hands on her hips.

“It’s getting him to shut up that’s the real trick!” Veemon mocked. A quick slap to the back of his head from Rainbow Dash however shut him up before could start laughing.

To Candlemon’s credit, he was able to ignore Veemon’s jeering and kept his focus on the Applejack the entire time. “Miss, I would like to give a brief history of the Digital World to help get you get up to speed with the rest of our cavalcade. If that would be alright, of course.”

Seeing she had no other alternative, Applejack sat down on the ground and prepared herself for what she assumed would be a “Twilight-Sparkle-Length” lecture. “Lay it on me.”

Candlemon clapped joyously. “Excellent! Then let us begin. It all started more than a thousand years ago, when the Digital World was still very young…”

******
The shriek of a giant bird with body made of black fire cried out towards the shores of File Island as the creature made its final approach. Perched on its head, a digimon with a long black cape like a pair of leathery bat wings stood casually with his hands rested on the butts of his hilted swords. He couldn’t help but laugh at how quickly the trip the been since he left the Realm of Demons. The island and it’s much larger continental neighbor weren’t that far in terms distance, roughly only one or two days travel by boat, and even faster if you could fly. Not that he tended to do his own flying in most cases, he was a cut above the average Demon Man digimon after all.

The bird began to sag in the air as they both grew closer towards beach. It was about to land in the surf, when digimon on its head began to speak. “It’s only fair to warn you, if my feet get even a little bit wet, I will not hesitate to eviscerate you.”

The flaming digimon’s eyes grew wide as it flew away from the water without hesitation. It promptly soared towards the beach and landed on the sand, far away from the receding tide. As it lowered its head the digimon perched there chuckled. “Good Saberdramon, and who says dumb animals can’t be taught.”

He hopped off the Saberdramon’s head and began to search his surroundings. “Now if I was a powerless non-digital, where would I hide?” He turned towards his Saberdramon. “Keep your nose clean, I may need you to sniff them out.” Despite his command, the Saberdramon had no experience sniffing out anything, and assumed its master just wanted to see it stick its nose in the soil to fruitlessly look for smells it didn’t recognize. This gave him reason to mock and punish the bird for its failures, so it greatly hoped they find a clue leading to the humans relatively quickly.

No sooner was its request sent, did its prayers get answered. The two heard a fight coming from the brush nearby. Judging by sounds of sniveling and complaining, the digimon that were speaking were ones the leader had an extensive amount of experience working with. Though simply having to state that fact did not brighten the head digimon’s mood, despite him being of a naturally chipper disposition.

The sword-wielding digimon motion for the Saberdramon to follow as he walked towards the brush. As they got closer they soon were able to make out what was being said between the quarreling digimon.

“I can’t believe you two lost her!” The unmistakable of voice of a Demidevimon shouted. “If you idiots could have just managed to hold on to her until you reached the Realm of Demons, we would have been swimming in anything we wanted!” There was a distinct tone of deep disappointment on his voice. “Money, womon, food, any vice we could have imagined, and you two screwed it up it up!”

“Oh like you can complain!” Another Demidevimon shot back. “We were the ones who were attacked while doing our part. You at least got to run away when the going got tough. We got Beast-King Fisted right in the face!”

“I WAS OUTNUMBERED! MAGNAMON WAS THERE!”

“WE WERE ATTACKED BY A PAIR OF LIONS!”

“AND I DON’T KNOW WHAT WE’RE ALL YELLING ABOUT!” The Demidevimon grew silent as a new voice joined their conversation. They turned to look up at the new digimon and shrunk back upon figuring out who was speaking.

The digimon they saw was tall and dressed in an outfit that resembled a clown from a gypsy festival. He wore a metal mask over his face that connected to a cowl the closed his outfit completely up, hiding away every inch of his body save for his eyes and chin. Two elongated skeletal arms stuck out the shoulder blades of his back, and hoisted the cloth of his cape upwards like a pair of demonic wings, which only scared the Demidevimon further.

“D-De-Demon L-Lord Boltboutamon.” The first Demidevimon shuttered.

“In the code and flouncy outfit...” The Demon Lord replied with a sinister smirk. He drew his sword and pointed it at the Demidevimon. “...But I don’t believe that answers my question.”

******
Magnamon hated File Island, even though he did see it as a necessary evil. The trees, among other things, made it an excellent shelter for young digimon as they journeyed out of the Village of Beginnings. Over time, they would eventually reach their champion forms and make their way towards the mainland to begin new adult lives, but the limited space always made things difficult for some mon like him… in other words, he was just too big to live here.

However, he did sometimes miss the early years in his life when he was there as a fresh digimon. The day he hatch he could never forget, Tickermon’s breasts were so…

“No! I’m not Ulforceveedramon.” He shouted, slapping himself for even thinking such a thing. Though in truth, he knew there was more to it. He was a lot more like Veemon then he would ever want to admit. He was only separated from the rookie-stage of his life by the fact that he came across the Digimetal of Miracles as in-training mon, from then on he was trained by the already existing Knights in the arts of etiquette and chivalry. That being said, he was still a digimon in the Veemon evolutionary line, and as such was still prone to behaviors common of his species. It still confused him to this day why the ancient creators would make such a brash, hard-headed race of creatures, that would more likely headbutt another digimon in greeting rather then just shake their hand. He didn’t hate where he came from, he just hated what they were known for.

However, he always did see something more in Ulforceveedramon. When he first met him he was only a Veemon with same kind of temper, but always had this fire in his stomach that no other digimon in his line could ever meet. At the time, Magnamon even imagined that he could have been the digimon who would replace the late Imperialdramon, the founder of the Royal Knights and ender of the dispute between the Five Sovereigns, the Three Great Celestials, and Shakamon over how King Drasil’s will was to be acted on and understood, among other feats.

But as he watched the Veemon grow up, those dreams were shattered, first when Ulforceveedramon didn’t evolve into a Exveemon, second when he refuse to de-digivolve, and third when he never made an attempt to bond with a Stingmon. But even then Magnamon still saw only potential, even though Ulforceveedramon never tried to reach it. He wasn’t the only one either. Back in the day, Leopardmon used to force Ulforceveedramon into training sessions no matter what he was doing, and often at random times of the day too. It made him chuckle how much of a drill sergeant she used to be, but that thought then made him wonder how much she could have changed over the last millennium.

Magnamon sighed, he couldn’t dwell on it that much longer he had to get through the canopy and double back towards the others. Oh, and lest he forgot he still needed to find Dorumon and Sunset and get them all back to the castle. And on top of that, there was the piece of corrupted courage digimetal that Candlemon still had in his bag. Its presence on caused him to ponder. “How did Black Digitron get on File Island? Let alone inside a deposit of courage digimetal.”

Magnamon searched the canopy from above until he saw an opening in the branches he believed was large enough for him to descend through. He paused upon hearing a couple voices through the vegetation. He slowed his engines to a low hum, allowing himself to keep aloft, but would require no further sudden movement to avoid the reving up the noise in his engines again.

“I swear I just one down a hill and rest of them went after her, that all I know!” It sounded like the Demidevimon he had met early was being interrogated.

“How interesting… you forgot to add the part about directions.” He knew that voice, and if his memory served him correctly, his snowballing situation was going to become much worse.

“I flew south immediately after I dropped her. I promise you, I didn’t turn once.”

Judging by the mirth present in the other digimon’s voice he was happy to receive the news. “Excellent, you boys did a fine job scouting out the humans for us. I will see you get handsomely rewarded for this.”

Demidevimons’ voices grew more hopefully. “Really? W-What do we get?”

“A promotion of course. You three are now officially the new caterers to the Demon Lords’ army, and lucky you I’ve got your first hungry patron right here. Poor Saberdramon has eaten since this morning.”

Magnamon could only imagine the scene that unfolded as the screams of the terrified Demidevimon hit his ears. Within seconds their voices went silent as a sickening crunch of bones and flesh arose from the forest. Magnamon heard all he needed to, and shot off in the direction of where he knew the humans would be.

A thin smirk spread across Boltboutamon’s face. “I hope your tummy’s full now, Saberdramon, because it seems a new player has just joined the game.”

******
“And then during the Battle of Recycle Valley…” Candlemon continued to speak as he drew some more diagrams on the chalkboard Pinkie Pie had provided him. It was then that he heard the one sound he hated more than anything, snores of boredom. He looked away from the chalkboard to see that the only one still awake was Leomon. “Every time I try to teach.” Candlemon grumbles.

“Well, Wizardmon you elected to go this route.” Leomon said as he patted Liollmon, who was fast asleep in his lap. He didn’t pat her hard enough to wake her, but it did cause her to stir slightly. Before Candlemon could ask how Leomon was able to so quickly identify him, the lion digimon beat him to the punch. “You’re the only mon on the island who would use Dynasmon’s title.”

Candlemon sighed, “How do you do it?” He asked.

“Simple, I don’t.” Leomon state bluntly which caused Candlemon to sigh again. Leomon then looked down to Liollmon. “Liollmon seems to remember her last cycle through and she’s the only one I ever tried to teach.” He began to pet her, gaining a low purr from his adopted daughter. “It’s hard to believe all those dreams she had of knighthood are all becoming true. To think, I played surrogate father to a Royal Knight. If I told anyone about this now, they’d probably scoff at me.”

Candlemon chuckled. “Well if it's any consolation, I never once thought I’d ever become a Royal Knight myself, and yet here we both are. What we thought impossible is becoming fact, and all because these humans fell into our lives.”

Leomon turn his disinterested gaze towards the snoozing cowgirl laying next him. A low grumble came out from his throat as he stared at her. He knew the legends well. He knew what powers the humans could give the digimon around him. He couldn’t help but be worried. With ability to digivolve came the possibility of stronger opponents to fight. Liollmon would no doubt be thrust into such situations, especially since she’d be traveling with a assembly of Royal Knights in-training. It made him wonder if she was ready for this? If he had trained her enough to be prepared for this journey? He began to ponder if it wouldn’t be better for him to tag along. After all nothing was stopping him.

He would have continued this thought, but it was then that Magnamon saw it fit to burst from the treetops and land powerfully against soil. Everyone who had been sleeping suddenly jumped up in shock and alarm.

“We need to find Dorumon and Sunset and evacuate the island, NOW!” Magnamon ordered. “Leomon get to the Village of Beginnings, and tell Petermon Magnamon said ‘2319’!”

“Why?” Candlemon asked. “What’s going on Magnamon?” Before he could receive an answer, an explosion erupted some distance away in another part of the forest. The cry of a digimon’s attack boomed from of the sky.

“Meteor Wing!”

More explosions were heard from random areas around the island as giant blazing balls of black fire streaked across the sky like flaming artillery being launched from a catapult. Another digimon could be heard shouting over the barrage of flames as they flew towards the ground.

“OH MAGNAMON! COME OUT AND PLAAAYYYY!”

Magnamon turned his gaze towards the sky and sneered under his helmet. “That maniac is willing to decimate the entire island just to goad me out.” He turned his gaze towards the girls. “He must have realized I was planning to move the girls before he could have a chance of finding them. With my luck, he’s probably planning to ransom the island in order to make me hand them over.”

His eyes turned towards Leomon. “Leomon, forget those orders. Grab everyone here and lead them towards the-”

Another explosion erupted, far closer this time causing several of the girls to scream in fear. Leomon grit his teeth and turned towards the where the explosion collided. “You don’t even need to say it.” Without a second thought, he turned to face the group of humans and their digimon and motioned for them to follow. Magnamon released a sigh of relief as they bolted into the forest. He turned back around to face the sky, and muttered under his breath as he shot into the air. “This is not going to be fun.”

In the sky, Boltboutamon stood atop the head of his fire bird mount with his main set of arms folded. He began to smirk as he saw the glint of golden armor as his enemy rose into the stratosphere to meet him.

“So the literal golden boy finally decides to present himself.” The mad demon gave the knight a mock bow in greeting as he continued his spiel. “Saluti, my garish adversary. It’s been far to long.”

“In my opinion, it’ll never be long enough before meet another Demon Lord wannabe.”

“Now, now, ‘Wrath’ is my vice.” The clown-like digimon mocked, disarming the Knight with a sinister smile.

“You think because you managed to fuse a Myotismon with yourself, that makes you anything like Daemon... the Hellfire of Chaos himself? That’s unsurprisingly presumptuous of you Piedmon.” Magnamon stated calmly, as if he was fully bathed in patience. This caused Boltboutamon to growl at the challenge, and that Magnamon didn’t call him by his appropriate name.

Boltboutamon lift his skeletal arms and leaped off Saberdramons head. He began to float as he drew his swords from their hilts. “Never underestimate me, you golden goon. Others have lost their lives for far less.” His eye shifted down towards the forest, before shooting back up to meet the knight’s. His malicious smile returned before he decided to speak. “You obviously know what I’m after. Why don’t we cut this little charade short, and you hand over the humans. I’ll leave and even take Saberdramon with me. File Island will never have to lay eyes on my flashy self ever again. Well… if and when the Lord of Pride tells me to come back, of course.”

“And that is why you will never exceed Daemon.” Magnamon replied calmly as if he was commenting on the shapes of clouds. “You take orders. Daemon was independent even when he was allied with the other Demon Lords. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I actually prefer fighting him. At least he had backbone. He didn’t need the help of any other digimon to become a threat, he did it all himself.”

Boltboutamon couldn’t tell what irked him more, what Magnamon was saying or the calmness in which he said it. It didn’t matter, Magnamon was going to pay.

Magnamon turned his gaze towards the clown digimon as if noticing he was there for the first time. “What’s the matter? Am I making you mad?”

That was the straw that broke the camel's back. Boltboutamon glared at the Royal Knight with more hatred then Magnamon had ever seen on any other digimon’s face before. “I am going to peel you out of that armor like fish from a sardine can, AND SKEWER YOUR BLOODY CHUCKS ON MY SWORDS LIKE SHISH KEBABS!”

“Good luck with that.” Missiles started to pop out of holes in his armor as if he were battleship getting ready to decimate an enemy vessel.

“Plasma Shoot!”

The barrage of explosives shot in all directions before circling back in on Boltboutamon and Saberdramon. Boltboutamon’s arms dropped to his sides for a second in disbelief before a playful smirk suddenly spread across his face. “Hmm… pretty.”

The missles collided with both digimon, blanketing them in a fog of black smoke and fire. Magnamon relaxed for a second as he eyed the scene. He was certain he had garnered the Demon Lord’s attention, and with luck he would keep it long enough for Leomon to evacuate the humans and young knights at the Village of Beginnings. He broke back into a battle ready stance when he thought he saw something move within the cloud of black ash.

Surprisingly, something shot out of the bottom of the cloud and flew towards the forest below. Saberdramon released a monsterous cry as it dived towards the canopy. There was no doubt in Magnamon’s mind that Boltboutamon sent him to retrieve the humans. Despite knowing there was a much stronger opponent hiding somewhere nearby, Magnamon could help but dive at the giant bird.

“Your not getting away!” He shouted, before feeling a long serpentine-like tail with sickle blade at its tip wrapping around his neck. Two feet collided with his back, sending the Royal Knight careening through the sky as the tail holding him in place released its grasp. Magnamon righted himself, before turning to look back into the sky to see Boltboutamon flying above him.

“You’re focusing on the wrong bird you know?!” The Demon Lord raised his arm and turn his blade horizontal as his middle finger suddenly shot up. “You’re flocked now, golden boy! "Welcome to Hell!”

Magnamon glowered. “You know nothing of Hell.”

******
Leomon lead the others as they all charged through the forest towards Village of Beginnings. He turned his head to look over his shoulder to make sure everyone was still together before turning back to face the path ahead. “Once we reach the Village of Beginnings, everyone will need to do their part to make sure the infant digimon get off the island safely! They may cry, they may scream, they may attack you, but do not let that hinder your efforts to get them all off the island! At this point their comfort doesn’t matter, all that is important is evacuating all innocents immediately! Is that understood?!”

“WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!” Rainbow Dash shouted. “Why are we all running?!”

Before Leomon could give an answer a giant, black firebird crashed down in front of them and cried into the sky.

“Ah think that answers yer question, Dash.” Applejack trembled as the Saberdramon glared down at them. Leomon stepped out in front of the group and brandished his sword.

“Everyone behind me. Now!”

Saberdramon lashed forwarded trying to snap Leomon up in its powerful jaws, only for the lion digimon to knock its head back by parrying his sword against firebird’s tooth. It screeched and dove in for another attack, but was faced with the same result as Leomon effortlessly knocked it back again.

“Do any of you know how to get to the Village of Beginnings?” Leomon barked as he stood his ground against the attacking bird.

“Fluttershy and Kudamon do. They told us they came from the part of the island.” Hagurumon replied.

“Then they’ll lead the way, I’ll keep Saberdramon occupied while you all run for safety.”

“I’m not leaving you to fight alone!” Liollmon protested.

Saberdramon lunged forward and bit down on the blade of Leomon’s sword. He began to push the lion digimon, only for Leomon to push back with equal force leaving them at a stalemate.

“I can handle this!” He grunted in exertion. “Right now the humans need your help far more than I do! Protect them as would a Knight for their kingdom, I promise we’ll see each other soon.”

Father…” Liollmon whispered.

Saberdramon’s eyes shifted upon hearing the cub’s admittance. Without a second thought it shifted its neck and tossed Leomon to the side, before shooting its sharp talons at Liollmon.

“Black Saber!”

“Liollmon!” Applejack shouted. Leomon had already made it back to his feet. In a move almost too quick for the eye, he appeared in front of his daughter and swung his sword deflecting the blow.

“No!” He shouted, only to start screaming in pain as Saberdramon’s head sudden shot outwards and wrapped its jaws around Leomon’s torso.

Liollmon’s eyes widened. “FATHER!” The firebird began to rise into the air carrying it’s captured prey, extremely pleased with itself that its ruse worked out so perfectly. Liollmon wasn’t about to let the beast get away however, and bolted towards Saberdramon’s leg before it had completely left the ground. She latched onto its scaley shin just as Saberdramon left the ground, Applejack gasped as she started to climb up the bird.

“Liollmon! Come back!” Applejack charged the bird and did much the same as the lion cub currently clinging to the giant bird. Her shouted her name and tried to follow, but Saberdramon had already flow to high for them to reach and was already starting to leave the canopy. Once the giant bird had broken through the foliage and left the groups area of vision, everyone began to worry.

“We’ll never be able to see happening to them from here.” Rarity commented. Kudamon then suddenly spoke up.

“The Village of Beginnings isn’t far from here and it’s mostly open fields. We should be able to see what’s going on from there.” The others nodded, accepting that at the plan before all racing towards the Village with Fluttershy and Kudamon in the lead.

******
Saberdramon shot high into the air as Leomon struggled to break free from its jaws. His arms were pinned, and the its maw proved to be long enough that kicking the beast would not be an option. He refrained from turning his head. He had seen Liollmon and Applejack jump onto Saberdramon’s legs as it was taking off, was thankful to find that bird hadn’t noticed them yet.

He was sure they were climbing upwards in an attempt to rescue him, but he dare give them the satisfaction of acknowledging their efforts for fear Saberdramon would see them and begin trying to throw them off. His only hope now was to wait and believe his daughter could manage the rescue attempt without his assistance. He felt himself grow calmer, but continued to struggle to keep up appearances. He knew Liollmon could manage this. She had allows shown potential, promise, and determination to achieve her goals. He knew she loved him dearly, and that nothing would get in her way should she ever needed to save him. Leomon couldn’t help but feel a warm sense of pride welling in his chest. Suddenly all those worries he was having in the past were starting to leave him. They didn’t seem as world-ending as the once were.

Below, Liollmon was climbing up Saberdramon’s leg like exhaustion and overexertion weren’t words in her vocabulary. The stratosphere's high winds were pushing at her, but she refused to be blown off. She had a mission to complete, a digimon to save… the most important digimon in her life right now. Assuming that…

Her eyes immediately shot open when she realized Applejack was desperately clinging to Saberdramon’s opposite leg. “What are you doing up here?!” Liollmon questioned. She wanted to shout at the foolhardy human, but at the same time didn’t want to goad Saberdramon’s attention.

“Ah’m not lettin’ you fight this blazin’ turkey alone!” She quietly shouted back. “This thin’ nearly squashed you back on the ground. You stand even less of a chance up here in its element.”

Liollmon felt her brows furrow at the very idea of being challenge. “Saberdramon is holding my father captive. He is my family. My responsibility! MY DIGIMON TO FIGHT FOR! Following me into battle isn’t only foolish, it is an insult to my pride that you think I couldn’t save the most important mon in the world to me!”

Applejack’s brows suddenly began to furrow. Liollmon’s expression began softened. “Don’t you dare start talkin’ about bein’ stubborn and frame it like a badge of pride!” Applejack shouted back. “Ah am stubborn. Ah often go off on my own because Ah don’t think anyone is better suited for a job than me, and more often than not, Ah regret it. You may talk all high-and-mighty, but we both know you’re just chargin’ at a ragin’ bull to prove you’re not scared.” Liollmon blinked in surprise, she somehow got that analogy. “You go up there alone, you’re goin’ to die. Let me have your back, so we can at least have twice the chance of gettin’ back to the ground safely again.”

Liollmon’s ears laid flat on her head as she contemplated Applejack’s words. She couldn’t tell why but tears were starting to form in the corners of her eyes. “Why are you helping me?”

“Because I know what it’s like to lose someone important too.” Applejack replied. Liollmon looked at her utterly dumbfounded. “Mah pa died in a farming accident when Ah was little, there was nothing Ah could do. But this time there is something Ah can do.” Applejack tapped on her gem and with all her might tried to twist the bird’s leg so that it would break, forcing it to let go of Leomon and fall. But it did nothing. “What?!” She shouted in surprise, causing the giant black bird to stop and look down at its legs. “Well buck my apple tree.” Applejack groaned as she saw that the jig was up.

The bird digimon tried to shake Applejack off, failing to see Liollmon was on the other talon. Liollmon’s eyes froze, her mind then started to turn several miles a minute. She pictured several scenarios, none would have save both Applejack and her father. If only she was… Suddenly she felt something like a tingle in her spine, but it didn’t originate in her. No, the feeling wasn’t coming from her body, it was coming from Applejack as the farm girl refused to let go. Suddenly the tingle felt like the unlocking of a door. She was…

“Liollmon digivolve to…”

The area was soon filled with light, causing Saberdramon to turn its head to avoid the glare.

“Liamon!”

Liollmon was now about the size of a tiger, the tuff on her head became a mane, and she had grown a second tail.

“THUNDER OF THE KING!”

Liamon roared as her mane began to glow, an arc of electricity then shooting outwards from her hair, shocking the bird. Saberdramon screamed in pain and opened its mouth, releasing Leomon from its hold before finally kicking off Applejack before the electricity could reach her.

Leomon dove for the farm girl upon feeling the open air, and upon catching, bound her tightly to his chest as they both fell into the foliage below. Once she saw that her father and friend had landed safely in the treetops, Liamon reached out and flexed her claws.

“CRITICAL STRIKE!”

She roarded and slit the underbelly of the giant bird open. Saberdramon’s screams grew silent as it eyes rolled back into it head. Both digimon began to fall as Saberdramon dissolved into data. Liamon leaped onto the canopy, and watched as the firebird came crashing to the ground.

Liamon snarled. The battle was over, but she still felt tense thanks to the adrenaline pumping through her veins. This was her first taste actual battle since her last cycle as Leopardmon. She could tell she didn’t enjoy it. It made her feel anxious and paranoid, but she assumed it would get easier the more she became accustomed to it.

She jumped a little bit upon feeling a hand slap down on her shoulder. Liamon turned to see Leomon standing beside her. Liamon’s eyes started to water as she saw all the open wounds now on his body. If he was feeling them he chose not to show it, but despite the intense pain he might have been feeling, she saw something on his face she never expected, a full and honest, unmistakable smile. No words were spoken, she knew what that smile meant. Her father couldn’t not have been prouder of her in this moment. She never wanted to see that smile go away, and was intent on seeing it grow wider if it were even possible.

“I now know what you have to do, and you are ready, Liamon.” Leomon stated. “You will make a truly righteous knight someday, and an even better warrior.”

Liamon couldn’t hold in her emotions any longer and tackled her father like a partially tamed lion would it’s trainer. Tears welled from her eyes as she nuzzled him. “I love you daddy.”

“I can’t recall the last time you called me that.” Leomon chuckled as he returned the embrace. The two soon parted and returned to their feet, before turning back towards Applejack. Liamon smiled wide and run towards the cowgirl, nuzzling her upon reaching her much like her father.

“Thank you.” She expressed. “None of this would have been possible if you hadn’t come to our aid.”

Applejack returned the embrace. “You don’t need to take things on alone. Remember that. Ah’ll be there for you and Ah’m certain the others will be too. That’s what friends are for.”

Leomon shook his head in amusement. “Truer words could not be said. Now come along the others are no doubt wait for us. Hopefully with Magnamon amongst their numbers.”

The other two nodded as Applejack climbed onto Liamon’s back. The two lions and human girl then broke through the branches of the canopy and charged for the Village of Beginnings.

Author's Note:

For those of you who don't know, the colors that highlight the Demon Lords' text in this chapter represent the different sins the old Demon Lords used to embody. In order, our current New Demon Lords represent Pride, Lust, Gluttony, and Wrath.

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