AN: Dai: sister?! Kouji is like an only child! How can he have a sister?
Crazi: Rider is liked! YEAH! Shippou smiles over her shoulder
Shippou: Crazi-sama said that Rider is not THAT closely related to Kouji.
Pietro: and she hasn't seen a good chunk of 04 since she's doing this volunteer project that her mom set up so she's going to be a little lost. Anyone know where she can find summaries?
Joey: Umm actually… she knows something about Kouji that Dai has neglected to you know, remember…
Crazi: Chapter two!
"Higher, Kouji." Rider instructed. Kouji kicked the dummy again, higher this time. "Don't forget your teachings."
"I'm not!" he said continuing to practice. Everyone else was still asleep. It was after all near dawn. Kouji couldn't sleep because he was restless so Rider decided to help him practice his martial arts.
"Yes you are, for a certain brunette if I am correct," she told him with a smirk as she leaned against the side of the cavern room. Kouji stopped mid-kick and turned to her.
"What do you mean Ro?" he asked.
"Come on. Who knows you the best? Me, right? Well, if I didn't see that you liked him, I'd have to be blind. You stare at him, you get soft around him, you're so in love it's sweet enough to make sugar cane!"
"Ground into pure white sugar sweetie, enough to rot your teeth for years," Rider answered. "You gonna practice or stare at me?" Kouji scowled and went back to attacking the dummy. "Kouji, there is nothing wrong with it."
"There is if he doesn't feel the same."
Rider shrugged. "Whatever, kid."
"Kouji?" a soft voice echoed down the hall from where the others were.
"Takuya?" Kouji asked, right before he could make out the boy on crutches.
"You weren't there when I woke up and I guess I got a little worried," the brunette said when he was closer.
"Sorry I couldn't sleep," Kouji answered him. "Rider was helping me with my martial arts."
"Can I watch?" Takuya asked hopefully. Rider smiled and nodded to Kouji that it was okay with her.
"Here Takuya, sit over here so your ankle and arm can rest," Rider told him motioning to a low natural shelf. Takuya nodded and sat to watch Kouji work, smiling as he seemed so intense while training. Rider smiled and was very quietly humming something, though neither boy heard her. She had a wonderful idea for when she got back to the real world.
Later that morning, Kouji was helping Takuya work on using his arm more since it had been broken, Rider thought it was a good idea to use impromptu physical therapy. Rider was talking to JP, Zoé, and Tommy about what they should do when they left. She was giving them some information on Ranamon when suddenly the whole cave began to shake.
"Is it an earthquake?" Tommy asked.
"Not in this region…. At least it's not supposed to be…" Bokomon said looking in his book.
"Everyone, we need to get out of the cave.. NOW!" Rider said. The kids began to run towards the exit Kouji and Takuya were going fairly slow since Takuya's ankle was hurting him a bit. Garurumon came up beside Rider and she whistled to Kouji and Takuya who turned to look at her. She and Kouji helped Takuya up and then climbed up themselves and left the cave. Rider jumped down and looked around trying to figure out who was trying to invade her home. On top of the cave entrance stood Ranamon and Arbormon. "I should have guessed it was you…" Rider spat at them.
"Youse should have but youse guys didn't!" Arbormon said.
"Y'all ready to go down?" Ranamon asked. Rider arched an eyebrow as she pulled out her D-Tector and spirit evolved to Lunartigiramon and began to fight them both.
"I have to help her," Kouji said jumping down. Takuya nodded and made to get down and help as well before Garurumon spoke to him as Kouji Spirit evolved into Lobomon.
"Takuya, you are not well enough to fight right now," he said in a gravely voice.
"But I can't let them get hurt! I have to help them!"
"You help them and get hurt worse it will take longer to heal. The longer it takes to heal the longer it is before you can truly help them.." Takuya nodded and held on to Garurumon as the others spirit evolved and joined the fight as well. Deep in the heat of the battle between Lobomon, Ranamon, and Lunartigiramon Kouji read the look on his friend's face and backed up.
"BINDS OF STARLIGHT!" Lunartigiramon cried just before Ranamon could slide evolve.
"You're going down, Ranamon," Lobomon said to the other warrior.
"NEVER! I'm too beautiful to be defeated so easily! Y'all'll pay!" she yelled back.
"Judgment-" Lunartigiramon began the attack.
"Goodbye, you are the weakest link…" Kouji muttered to the southern talking digimon.
"ECLIPSE!" Lunartigiramon's attack clouded over the sun and a bright ray came from the center and shot straight at Ranamon.
"NO! YOU CANNOT DO THIS TO ME!" she cried before she was turned into an egg and the ray deleted it. Arbormon froze in his place in his fight with the others to see Lunartigiramon turn towards him with a look in her eyes that said 'that's what going to happen to you'.
"Youse guys'll be sorry!" he told them before disappearing. The others de-evolved and Rider sank to her knees in her place breathing hard.
"Ro.. you okay?" Kouji whispered to her. She nodded.
"We should….get… in-inside now…" she said as she tried to stay awake it seemed. "Judgment takes it out of me sometimes…" she explained as Kouji helped her down and they all trooped back inside to rest.
"That was one powerful attack!" Tommy said to her eyes shinning. "I bet it took a long time to learn!"
"A long time to control, to learn? I always knew it in my heart. Like you knew of yours," she told the child as he smiled. Zoé looked at Rider and saw that she was, like an older sister with the responsibility of a family on her hands.
"What happened to Ranamon?" JP asked.
"She was judged and found guilty. End of discussion."
"What do you mean judged and found guilty?"
"The stars and elders of the digital world said she should be punished and the attack did such. I'm a vessel in which the judgment rests. I am to cast the eclipse and see where it leads from there…"
"She was deleted?" Neemon asked.
"That may be a possibility. I do not know what actually happens to them. I only send them to trial. You can say I am a police officer of sorts…" Rider explained.
"Cool! That means you could help us when we get lost!" Tommy said.
"I already do! How do you think that Whamon took you to the correct island that Zoé's beast spirit was? Or that you were the one to happen upon your beast spirit Tommy? Or that anything is really ever a coincidence when it comes to your achievements? I've been guiding you the whole way. No I'm not the voice in your D-Tector. I am only a guiding light, you could say…" she smiled. "how can you explain me being there when Takuya got his beast spirit? That is, if I haven't be helping you.."
"I don't remember that," Takuya said looking confused.
"She was, don't stress about it…" Kouji said to him with a small smile. Takuya shrugged and let it slide.
Two days later Rider was waving off the children as Garurumon howled a farewell. Kouji and Takuya smiled and waved back to them.
After watching the defeat of Arbormon and fighting with Duskmon and defeating Mercurymon the group of course split up, Kouji chasing after Velgemon and Takuya of course chasing Kouji while JP, Zoé, and Tommy left to scout the area.
Garurumon sped with Rider on his back. "Are you sure," Garurumon paused with a pant, "That you saw what you think you saw in the crystal?"
"Positive.." Rider told him. They caught sight of Kouji and Takuya. "GUYS!" she called out to them jumping down and running over to them. "Kouji are you okay?" she asked almost fussing over him.
"IT LOOKED LIKE HE CRACKED YOUR RIBS! You expect me not to worry?!" she asked shocked. She turned to Takuya. "And how are you pulling through?"
"Fine!" he exclaimed with a smile.
"Good. Now, for you two to find the others, and me to find Velgemon," she said standing and beginning to walk in the direction that he had disappeared when Kouji grabbed her arm.
"He has answers for me and I'm going to get them!" Kouji declared, rebellion flashing in his eyes like fire.
"You sure you're ready for it Kouji?"
"It's hard for me not to…" she responded. "It's my job to watch over you….and that comes with knowing.. but I have to find Velgemon before he does something stupid. I can't let something happen to him again," Rider said slipping from Kouji's grasp and evolving to Artinimon. She took to the air and followed quickly after Velgemon.
"It is not your fault Kouji… Come, I'll take you to your friends," Garurumon said as the two boys climbed on. He was about to head in the way they had come before Kouji spoke up.
"What? Kouji, she wants us safe! Come on she's really trying to look out for you," Takuya said.
"Takuya… I have to follow her… I can't explain why but I have to."
"Kouji… You can't go by yourself!" Takuya said to him trying to look in his friend's eyes.
"I have to. Velgemon has the answers I came here for.. and I have to find them out… Or they'll haunt me.. I have to do this Takuya.. Please understand."
Takuya placed a hand on Kouji's causing the other boy to look at him. "I don't understand why you always want to do things on your own… I'm your best friend Kouji and I want to go with you."
Kouji stared at his friend a moment before smiling radiantly and nodding to him. "Let's get going then Garurumon."
"You will tell her that this isn't my fault, correct Kouji?"
"Of course!" he said as they sped along after the girl.
"VELGEMON!" Artinimon said harshly causing the other digimon to stop and face her.
"What do you want, priestess?" he asked with an icy edge.
"Don't do this to Kouji…" she said simply. It looked like he was about to fly off again she called out, "Don't do this to me either.."
"I can't seem to fight it on my own…" he got out.
"Let me help you!" It seemed the beast was taking over him again. "I'm giving you a chance. Let the monster win, I die and Kouji goes back to getting hurt. You win, I live, you live, and Kouji lives. And we live together and be happy like we all deserved to be!"
"Ro! Don't do what I think you're going to do!" he called out.
"It's up to you Kouichi…" she said un-evolving and beginning to fall down to the ground awaiting impact.
"NO!" Takuya and Kouji yelled watching her fall. But they were all shocked to see Velgemon catch her and set her down gently just far enough that if anything was said they wouldn't be able to hear it.
"Kouichi?" Rider asked as the other de-evolved to his human form. A version of Kouji except with shorter hair stood before them, looking at Rider.
"Rosali Sakura Minamoto, if you ever, even think about pulling a stunt like that again I will personally- ACK!" He was cut off as the girl pounced on him in a hug, tears streaming down her face. "What now?"
"I thought we were gonna lose you again!" she said looking down at the other teen with a smile on her face as he hugged her back.
"I guess, you and Kouji are what it took…" Kouichi said with a small smile.
"And I know that Kouji and Takuya are right over there. And Kouji and I can cleanse your D-Tector so that things are the way they should be," Rosali explained. "Oh, and around the other digidestined, I'm Rider."
"Got it.. I hope."
"Understood," Kouichi said with a sigh as they came up beside Garurumon and the two boys leapt down staring at Kouichi wearily. "Hello Kouji."
The younger boy turned pale as his eyes widened. "It can't be… No!" Kouji said shaking his head in disbelief.
"Kouji what's wrong?" Takuya asked, ready to defend his friend if needed.
"Why?!" Kouji demanded.
"It was Cherubimon. I tried to follow you here from the real world, but missed the elevator you and your friend got on… I tried to take the stairs but I ended up falling.. Next thing I know, Cherubimon had me under his power. Rider's been trying to help for awhile now… But we both knew that all help should go to you first," Kouichi explained.
"You're the one I saw on the train then! When I tried to go back but I wasn't… I returned as a digimon… If you waited a second longer I'd have been able to get you down to where Kouji and the human form of me was… This probably could have been avoided," Takuya said, looking semi-guilty.
"No. Cherubimon had the spirits and his d-Tector. There was nothing any of us could have done to completely avoid this," Rider explained.
"But why did he have you fighting me?" Kouji asked.
"You are light and I am Dark. Really Kouji, it's simply when you look at it in black in white."
"Haha.. Puns as bad as ever…"
"I'm sorry, Kouji…" the other boy said.
Kouji nodded. "I'm sorry too Kouichi…" he said giving the other a slight smile. Then the two hugged. Takuya nudged Rider's side.
"Explain…" he said giving her a look that said 'do I have competition?'
"Twins." That kept the boy quiet for a moment trying to compute it correctly.
"Thanks, Rider… Without you… I don't think I'd have made it to be with Kouji," Kouichi said with a wink to the girl.
"All in a days work. Now let's get back and find those other three warriors that are on our side and get to Rose morning star. That way we can you know, beat Cherubimon's ass seventy ways to Sunday, and get back to the real world where all belong…." She ushered the boys onto Garurumon who caught up easily to the Trailmon and stayed steadily by while the passengers talked of what their plan was to be.
"But this is getting really confusing," Zoé said looking at the two brothers who were seated by Rider and realized they all held that family like resemblance. 'Weird…' she thought but let it drop.
"You're telling me," the three Minamotos said together. Takuya, Tommy, and Garurumon snickered at the three for being so alike with out even trying.
"Is anyone else worried about what we're going to do when we get to the Rose Morning Star?" JP asked.
"JP, we have no choice but to face him. I mean, if we just allow Cherubimon to take over we won't get back home ever," Kouichi said.
"Man, that was kinda harsh," the large brunette said.
"That was the pretty way," Rider said to the boy as they continued on.
"This is it guys… Our biggest battle ever… The fight for the digital world," Takuya told them.
"THE FIGHT FOR US!" Neemon, Patamon, and Bokomon chorused as a friendly Birdramon dropped them off.
"Thanks again!" Rider called to the digimon as she flew off again. "The fight for us all…."
"That's right… It is the fight for us all," Kouichi said giving her a hug. 'Never knew she'd become so wonderful in all these years. She's really grown up…' Kouichi thought about his female cousin who smiled over her shoulder to him and then to the others.
"The big battle for truth!" Zoé said.
"Justice!" Rider said with a smile winking at Zoé.
"Friendship," Kouji said squeezing Takuya's left hand slightly.
"Hope!" Tommy smiled brightly.
"Honor!" JP said.
"Family," Kouichi said smiling to his brother who smiled back.
Takuya smiled as it came his turn to voice a virtue. "The battle for love and peace," he finished for them.
"Here, here!" Rosali and Kouichi cheered.
"That is what it is…" Kouji said quietly.
"The very heart and soul of the reason we're doing this…" Zoé said.
"It sure took you all long enough to understand it!" Bokomon said.
"But you did and that's great!" Patamon said with his special charm. They all smiled and watched as their destination got closer.
Artinimon glanced around the area from the skies. The rest of the group was much more tired than she was. Fighting the fake Cherubimon had taken it out of them.
"See anything?" Takuya asked her as she came back down.
"Just tracks. That's it… Just train tracks and the star ahead… A bit of a building…" she answered de-digivolving. "I'm really sorry that I can't tell you more…"
"As long as you're willing to help us, we're happy," Kouichi said. Rider smiled and blushed a bit.
"So what's the plan, Taki? Angler can't go any further… the track ripped up!" JP complained; Rider looked at the track and then looked behind the train and got an idea. She leaned up on her tiptoes and talked to Angler and Garurumon. As they listened and nodded, the others looked a bit confused. Takuya started to bicker with Kouji about a plan, while Tommy and Kouichi tried to get them to stop. Zoé sighed and waited. In just moments, Garurumon was tearing up part of the track and placing it before Angler and nudging it into place.
"All board who's getting aboard!" Rider yelled jumping atop Garurumon. "We've got an evil to defeat! No time to dilly-dally!"
After questions were answered about what Rider was thinking, everyone was piled into Angler and they were once again on their way.
"SO they think they can defeat me do they?"
"I know that they can Cherubimon!" Ophanimon told him, head held high as she was in her prison of light.
"We shall see…" he said as he disappeared into the darkness.
(AN: Dai: THAT SUCKED! What kinda scene is that?! Crazi: That's the scene you're helping me write you wanker! Spike: I taught her well, eh mate?)
Kouichi fidgeted as they neared the star. Kouji placed a reassuring hand on his shoulder and smiled. Everyone pulled out their D-Tectors as Angler stopped.
"I'm sorry, my schnitzel, but I can't go any further…" he cried tears in his eyes.
"Don't worry, Angler, we can take it from here," Zoé soothed him as they began to walk. "We'll see you soon!" The children waved to him as they kept walking away towards the red glow.
"Is it just me, or is the whole place like, really boring?"
"It's not just you," Rider said kneeling down and feeling the ground. "Odd, it's like it's dead…"
"There's a castle!" Tommy called out pointing and tapping on Rider's shoulder.
"That's where we're heading…" Kouichi said softly. "That's Cherubimon's castle."
"Here we go!" Takuya said before Phantomon began to surround them.
"HELP!" Zoe cried out as she dropped her D-Tector and was held by one of the chains.
"HOWLING BLASTER!" Garurumon yelled hitting the Phantomon.
"EXICUTE- SPIRIT EVOLUTION!" the children cried out.
"All right, guys! Get em!" Agunimon yelled out as they attacked the Phantomon.