Author's Notes: Hello, and thank you for reading and enjoying my story. There are so many I would like to thank, though putting them all on this chapter is kind of ridiculous. But to those who have supported me the most, I will personally thank you. Because of your encouragement, I was able to create this story and treasured the memories over the past five years. Again, thank you and enjoy the ending.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything from the Digimon Frontier series or any of the characters.
So, without further ado, here's the final chapter!
An Endless Tale
"It has been four months since the monsters known as 'Digimon' had left their dimension and began their invasion in our world. Thousands of soldiers gave up their lives to protect their country. But what's even more surprising is that some of the Digimon were actually on our side, stopping the invaders from terrorizing the planet. By forming an alliance with us humans, they were able to stop the invaders and save our world. We go live to Shibuya, where World News reporter, Michelle Ishige is on the scene. Michelle?"
In the background, there are what appears to be hundreds of citizens working together to reconstruct the city of Shibuya. Compared to four months ago, Shibuya is in much better shape. All of the billboards were fixed. The television screens that were broken were also replaced with new ones. There was not a single overturned vehicle on the road. Cars were parallel parked around the curb, giving the people all the room they need to reconstruct Shibuya.
A majority of the debris and trash has been cleaned up, leaving the grounds nearly spotless. There was not a single broken glass, piece of metal or garbage lying around. The volunteers did a really good job in cleaning up the city. Citizens are also decorating their beloved town by planting more trees and flowers in the area. Even the crowded city of Shibuya can enjoy the sights and smells of the luscious plants.
Of course, there is still a long way to go. During the battle against the evil Digimon, a few buildings were completely destroyed or had collapsed. As of right now, the infrastructure is about seventy-five percent completed in most of the buildings. However, it is going to take much more time to rebuild these ginormous structures and get the entire city back to its feet.
A woman in her forties appeared on the screen holding a microphone. She was standing in the middle of Shibuya Station, where the Digimon first appeared. This was the place where many brave soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice. This is where the final battle against the evil Digimon took place. And of course, this was the place where all of the Digimon had disappeared and returned back to the Digital World.
"Thank you, Michael! I'm in Shibuya right now! As you can see behind me, there are many volunteers who are helping the city flourish again. That's right. Thousands of people have come together to reconstruct one of the most decorative and busiest places in all of Japan. Four months ago, a bunch of monsters, known as Digimon, have entered our world and began wreaking havoc in the city. Many people still have nightmares of that horrific event."
Four people shared their thoughts about the attacks.
"It was surreal. I have never seen anything like it." ||| "To this day, I have to check under my bed and out the door for any of those monsters." ||| "My children were terrified. Some nights, they cannot sleep." ||| "Are we safe? Will they ever come back again?"
The camera then cut back to some more people cleaning up the streets of Shibuya and doing everything in their power to rebuild the city. The female reporter continued to share her story.
"Our entire planet would've been slaves of the terrorizing Digimon for a long time, if it weren't for our heroes. Some of the thanks goes to the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, who put themselves in harm's way for our freedom."
One person in particular is truly thankful for the military's defense.
"If it wasn't for the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, I wouldn't be standing here, nor see my family again."
This time, the camera shows some children coloring pictures of their saviors.
"But if you ask many, their thanks are reserved specifically for a group of children and their partners, who are powerful Digimon called the Legendary Warriors. They were able to convince the people to join forces with the good Digimon, using their combined energies for power. By working together, the evil Digimon were defeated. The young generation are eternally grateful for their services."
The kids who were drawing pictures of the Legendary Warriors and their human partners left a comment about their heroes.
"They're totally awesome, standing up to the bad guys." ||| "They're like super heroes." ||| "I'll forever remember them and what they did."
The camera then refocused on an entire class of elementary school. Together, they worked on a banner in honor of the Digimon who saved them.
"For privacy and confidentiality purposes, we keep the children and the Legendary Warriors' names off of our records and off film. As of right now, their whereabouts are unknown. However, on behalf of everyone from World News, we would like to extend our gratitude toward the kids and their Digimon allies. Our world is safe and better off because of them."
The next shot was the same class showing the banner to the camera and the world, which says 'DENSETSU NO EIYŪ O ARIGATŌGOZAIMASU!' Every boy and girl smiled and waved to the camera.
"THANK YOU SO MUCH!"
The report has ended and the broadcast has returned back to headquarters.
"So many lives touched. Thank you, Michelle. But not everyone is rejoicing. The former general of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces won't be smiling for a long time. He was put on trial for his crimes against humanity. Kirai Nikushimi was put on trial and was found guilty on multiple counts of abuse of authority, abuse of power, aggravated assault, attempted genocide, terrorism and weapons violation. He has been given multiple life sentences without parole. However, even to this day, Kirai Nikushimi still claims his innocence, warning us about what is to come."
The camera then cuts to a couple of troops escorting the deranged man out of the courthouse.
"LET ME GO, YOU MISERABLE MAGGOTS! ARGH! UNHAND ME AT ONCE! THE MONSTERS ARE STILL AT LARGE! THEY'RE HERE IN OUR CITY! THEY COULD BE STANDING RIGHT NEXT TO YOU! LISTEN TO ME, YOU FOOLS! THESE HIDEOUS CREATURES WILL BE BACK WITH A VENGANCE! WE MUST PROTECT OURSELVES! I CAN GUARANTEE YOU THAT THEY ARE PLOTTING FOR REVENGE ON US! WE MUST ERADICATE ALL OF THEM BEFORE THEY..."
The broadcast station quickly refocused back toward headquarters to conclude the report.
"With Kirai Nikushimi behind bars, there was a vacancy for the position of General of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces. Today, that position is filled by..."
Suddenly, the television was turned off.
"Hey!" Teruo gasped.
"We were watching that!" Teppei hollered.
"You guys watch the news? Who does that?" Katsuharu eyed his friends while holding the remote.
Moments later, Chiaki appeared behind the former Bearer of Steel.
"Come on, boys. Enough sitting around. We could use a little help setting up the party."
Teppei and Teruo finally sighed and got off of the couch. He and the others walked out of the family room and headed outside.
After saving the Digital World and the Human World from the evil Digimon, the entire group agreed to have a ginormous party to celebrate. But with school starting and the entire press hounding them to get their story, it was difficult for the kids to come together. And when they did come up with a date, almost everyone was busy doing other things. However, the whole group felt that everyone should be there if this celebration were to happen.
After letting the madness settle for a few months, the gang finally decided to have the party sometime this month. It took almost a week of planning. But everyone decided that the party was going to be held at Takuya's house. The backyard was filled with balloons, streamers and lights. There were three tables set up alongside the grass, with chairs neatly lined up. White table clothes covered the tables to prevent messes.
Besides Katsuharu and his friends, most of the guests were getting settled in the Kanbara household. Takuya's, Koji's, Koichi's and Tommy's family were helping each other prep the food. There is a wide assortment of tasty dishes for the party. There are sushi trays, ramen bowls, steamed vegetables and roasted poultry. And for desert, there are a variety of cookies, cakes and tarts.
As for Koji and Koichi, they were helping out in their own way. The two of them invited their bandmates over for the party. Once the drummer, bassist and keyboardist had arrived, the group of five helped each other set up the instruments somewhere along the backyard, away from the tables. They figured that bringing some music would lighten up the party. And instead of paying for a DJ, Koji and Koichi can have his band play some music for everyone.
Tommy was in kitchen, making his own special dish. The former Bearer of Ice went back to his famous recipe, The Little Tommy, which was the burger he created when he and his friends rescued a family of Burgermon. He combined chopped onions with a special salad dressing that Zoe taught him how to make a year ago. Tommy made sure that he makes enough for everyone. Even though his parents were a little disgusted with their son's creation, the boy claims that they will like it.
Meanwhile, some of the kids were busy setting up the tables. Chiaki took care of the napkins, while Teruo was responsible for the plates. Katsuharu placed chopsticks and silverware next to each plate. Teppei puts a glass for each guest. While the four were setting up outside, J.P. was helping Takuya throw away the garbage and recyclables. Afterwards, the two boys were washing the dishes.
The stacks of bowls, plates, trays and silverware were getting higher by the minute, mostly thanks to the eleven year old boy.
"Hey, Tommy. Where's your brother? We could use his help." J.P. asked.
"He's probably still in the family room. Last time I checked, he was on the phone, talking to someone. Hang on. I'll get him." replied the eleven year old boy.
After drying his hands, Tommy left the kitchen to search for Yutaka. The former Bearer of Ice navigated through the crowd of people and made his way into the family room. Not surprisingly, he found a young man sitting on a couch, talking on his cell phone. Yutaka rested his foot against the coffee table, laughing and giving whoever was on the other line directions to the appointed location.
"Ahem!" Tommy cleared his throat to get his brother's attention.
Yutaka glanced toward the side and noticed his sibling standing in the hallway with his arms crossed.
"I gotta go. I'll see you in a few."
The young man finally put his phone away and got up from the sofa.
"Come on, Yutaka. We need your help." Tommy requested.
"Fine." The eldest spoke with little enthusiasm.
But before letting his brother pass, the eleven year old boy was curious about something.
"Who was that you were just talking to?"
Yutaka froze and shrugged.
Of course, Tommy was surprised with this answer.
"Wait! You have a girlfriend? Since when?"
"Let's go, Squirt. The party isn't going to set up by itself, right?" Yutaka dodged the question.
"What are you talking about? You're the one who's laying around, talking on the phone with your..."
"I'll get it!"
Takuya rushed past Tommy and his brother. There were a few more guests that haven't arrived yet. And one of them would his girlfriend. He reached for the front door and opened it. However, Takuya's enthusiasm dropped slightly when he noticed that the girl standing at the entrance to his house wasn't his best friend.
"Oh. Hi, Nanami." The goggle-head said.
"Hello. Is J.P. here?" The fifteen year old brunette asked.
"Uh-huh. He's in the kitchen washing the dishes. Anyway, please come in."
"Thank you." Nanami Kanao said as she removed her shoes and walked inside. "I'll go find J.P. and help him."
Takuya then noticed the girl was carrying a bento box. He smiled, knowing very well who she made it for. The former Bearer of Flame is happy at how close she and J.P. had become ever since the war against the evil Digimon has ended. Then again, even though Nanami said she was going to help J.P., Takuya had a feeling that she will 'help' him with the contents inside her bento box.
After setting her specially prepared dish on one of the tables outside, she went back into the kitchen to help J.P. wash and dry some of the dishes. Apparently, the former Bearer of Thunder noticed the bento box his girlfriend has prepared for him. J.P. bombarded his best friend with questions about the contents inside the box. But all the fifteen year old boy got from Nanami was a soft giggle. Obviously, she didn't want to spoil the surprise. But Nanami promised J.P. that this is her best dish yet.
Meanwhile, Takuya gazed at the couple doing the dishes. J.P. and Nanami looked so cute when they are together. Their love for each other is almost the same as him and Zoe. He hopes that these two will stay with each other for many years to come. It's like they are meant for each other.
Unfortunately, the fourteen year old boy failed to notice that more guest was coming up behind him.
"Excuse me. Are you Takuya Kanbara?" A voice of man spoke to the unsuspecting boy.
"Yes, that is me." The boy turned around to the person standing outside his door.
Before Takuya could react, he felt something sharping pointing at his stomach. The former Bearer of Flame looked down and that someone gently pressing the tip of a twenty-six inch katana on top of his midsection. Of course, it's not enough to penetrate through the skin or caused him to bleed. But even so, Takuya did not move an inch, thinking that the slightest twitch would make the person in front of him add more pressure to the sword.
The former Bearer of Flame looked up and recognized the man standing before him.
"Mr. Orimoto." Takuya said with his voice filled confusion and uneasiness.
"Hello, young man. First of all, I would like to thank you for inviting me and my family to this party of yours. We've been looking forward to this day, especially Zoe."
"Well, I'm glad you're able to make it, sir. But would you care to explain why you are pressing your sword against my body?"
"Oh, pardon my manners. This is just a fatherly warning, that's all. According to my daughter, the two of you are 'going out', am I correct?"
"Y... Yes, sir." replied the boy, showing small signs of intimidation.
"I see." Mr. Orimoto nodded.
"So... Do all 'fatherly warnings' come with a sword pointed at my chest?"
"Only the special ones do. It helps to get the message across clear. Plus, it also makes any points I give very memorable."
"I hope you're not threatening me, sir. I haven't done anything wrong to your daughter. I would never."
"I never was threatening, young man. I'm just offering some words of wisdom. Zoe is really important to me. She may be strong and independent, but I will do everything to protect my daughter. Will you do the same?" asked Mr. Orimoto.
"Yes, sir." Takuya replied with more confidence. "I have nearly given up my life several times to protect Zoe, especially when we were in the Digital World. Yes, she is really strong when we fought together on the same side. But I will protect Zoe whenever she's in danger."
"I will never hurt Zoe, nor do anything to her that she doesn't want me to. She is my best friend, Mr. Orimoto. I love her."
"Good." The man finally cracked a smile.
But then he applied a small amount of pressure on the tip of his sword. It wasn't enough to cut through the skin. However, one more ounce of pressure would cause some penetration.
"I'll have my eyes on you, Takuya Kanbara. Because if you do anything horrible to my daughter... I'll make you regret it. Do you get my point?"
"In more ways than one, sir." nodded the boy, not showing any signs of fear.
"HAYATE! I THOUGHT I TOLD YOU NOT TO BRING THE FAMILY'S SWORD!"
Takuya breathed a sigh of relief when Mrs. Orimoto's voice made the man back off. Mr. Orimoto put his sword back in his sheath and made his way into the Kanbara residence. As the boy checked his midsection for any cuts, Zoe's mother placed a hand on Takuya's shoulder and smiled.
"Don't be afraid, young man. My husband can be... overprotective at times."
"Oh, you think?"
"Please be patient. He's still trying to get used to the fact that you and Zoe are dating. As for me, you have my blessing. I am glad that my daughter has found a kind, energetic, hot-headed, strong, young man like you."
After patting Takuya's head, Mrs. Orimoto walked inside and joined her husband. Just to be on the safe side, she confiscated Mr. Orimoto's sword and stashed it in the corners of the family room. The former Bearer of Flame had to wipe the sweat off of his forehead. He's glad that Zoe's parents are able to accept their relationship. Then again, it'll probably take a few years for Takuya to gain Mr. Orimoto's trust.
"Sorry about that." The voice of a certain blonde beauty entered the boy's ear.
"You sure got an interesting family, Z. I have no idea how you... you... Whoa."
Standing in front of the doorway is the most beautiful girl Takuya has ever seen. Zoe Orimoto waved toward her best friend coyly with a hint of makeup on her face, small traces of mascara on her eyes and light amounts of lipstick covering her mouth. She wore plum-colored flower earrings and a silver necklace with a butterfly pendant acting as the centerpiece.
The young woman didn't wear her purple beanie, since today was a casual event. But her outfit did not disappoint the fourteen year old boy. She had a lavender sundress. It had white and pink cherry blossom patterns all over. Zoe's dress was barely able to reach the young woman's knees, giving Takuya a good view of his beloved's legs. And finally, the blonde black, casual heels to make her just a bit taller than her best friend.
"Do you like it?" Zoe twirled once and posed in front of Takuya.
"So beautiful." The former Bearer of Flame spoke.
"Teehee. And you don't look so bad yourself."
Zoe had to admit that Takuya does look handsome in casual attire. His hair was gelled nicely with a spiky look in the front. He wore a bright-red polo with the letter 'D' over his left side. Takuya also had a pair of khakis, held together by a black belt that has a white stripe running across the middle. At the bottom were black socks. Last of all, his footwear black and red footwear can be easily mistake for bowling shoes.
The only thing missing was his signature goggles, which his mother forbids him to wear for tonight.
"But I feel like such a twerp." Takuya criticized.
"Don't say that. You look amazing." Zoe said, buttoning up her boyfriend's shirt.
"By the way, did you see the way your dad threatened me with a sword? Really? Who brings a sword to a party? What does your dad think I was going to do to you, Zoe? I swear, I bet he's going to stalk me throughout the entire party until you leave. I mean, seriously. Your dad's weird."
But Zoe gave her best friend an innocent smile.
"He likes you."
Her response stunned the boy.
"That was 'like'? Jeez, your dad has a strange way of showing how much he likes others. If that was 'like', then I hate to see how he treats someone he despises..."
"Takuya..." Zoe's soft voice settled her beloved's worries. As she wraps her arms around Takuya, she inched closer towards him.
"Don't worry about my dad. He's just looking out for me. But in reality, he really thinks you're special. And he's really glad that I was able to find someone like you... someone who is brave, strong, not afraid to stand up for what he believes in and willing to give up their life for me. One day, you two will become great friends. I'm sure about it."
"I guess so." Takuya chuckled, feeling himself draw toward his best friend. "Still, I get this strange feeling that your dad is watching us right now."
"Teehee. I don't care. And I said not to worry about him, remember?"
"Hmm... I'm getting a 'Shut up and kiss me' vibe from you."
"Mmm... You are smart."
Takuya and Zoe finally closed the distance. It has been such a long time since they tasted each other's lips. But the sweet sensation of kissing their best friend remained. A small smile formed on the couple's lips. They wish they could be in this position forever, safe in each other's arms. Nothing beats the tender touch of each other's skin. The kiss, however, is the best of all. There is something about the warmth of each other's lips. Takuya and Zoe couldn't get enough of it. Nothing could ever separate these two.
*knock, knock, knock*
Well, almost nothing. The couple regrettably parted lips and sighed.
"Are you gonna get the door?" reminded the blonde beauty.
"Do I have to?"
"Fine..." The young man groaned.
And so, Takuya slowly dragged his feet toward the door. As he approached the entrance to his house, he pondered to who might be on the other side. The former Bearer of Flame quickly down the list of who is accounted for. So far, every one of Takuya's friends is here, including their families. There is also Koji's and Koichi's bandmates and J.P.'s girlfriend. Takuya has no idea who could be standing in front of his house.
With that, the former Bearer of Flame opened the door.
"Hello. Sorry I'm late." A twenty-four year old woman smiled at the boy.
"No way! I don't believe it!" gasped Takuya.
"Who is it?" Zoe wondered.
Once when her best friend opened the door all the way, Zoe's eyes widened.
The female officer giggled.
"That's former Lieutenant Chisaki." corrected the young woman. "I was recently promoted to General of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, now that Kirai Nikushimi has been locked up."
"General Chisaki." Takuya repeated. However, he lets out a subtle chuckle. "I'm sorry. It'll take a while for me to get used to."
"It's fine, young man. In fact, call me Hitomi. Today, I'm not a soldier or a general. Today, I'm just a friend who has come to enjoy herself."
"Really? But I didn't send you an invitation." recalled the fourteen year old boy. "How did you know I was hosting a party with my friends..."
"Hitomi. There you are. Glad you made it."
Behind Takuya and Zoe, the person who invited the young woman appeared out of the hallways and waved.
The twenty-four year old passed the couple and ran into the arms of the young man. After exchanging smiles and laughter, Yutaka and Hitomi planted a soft kiss on each other's lips. Takuya watched with his eyes wide open in shock, while Zoe stifled a giggle at how cute the two of them look together. Tommy Himi was left with his mouth hung open.
After a while, the young adults parted and glanced at the others.
"Yutaka? What's going on here?" The younger brother asked.
"Yeah, um... She and I, uh... We started back in, um... You know what? Just go with it."
With that as his best explanation, the couple made their way toward the kitchen. Yutaka reintroduced his girlfriend to the rest of the guests. Unlike the kids, the adults were more accepting. They greeted the officer with handshakes and hugs. Not surprisingly, they didn't treat Hitomi Chisaki as an important officer. They see the young woman as a good friend, who helped their children in their biggest time of need.
"So, uh... Tommy? Since when did your older brother started dating the highest ranked officer of our country?" Takuya eyed the former Bearer of Ice.
"Don't look at me. I just found out today." Tommy replied.
"Come on, boys. Let's just enjoy ourselves." suggested Zoe.
Now that the guests have arrived, the food has been prepared and everything else has been set up, everyone can now relax and have a good time.
"Let's get this party started!" Takuya exclaimed.
The adults sat on one table, while the kids sat on another. The parents talked about what life's been like for them and the family ever since the battle with the evil Digimon has ended. Sometimes, it was a nightmare being hounded by the media. For weeks, they had been hounded by journalists and reporters who were trying to get the big scoop on the entire monster story. It was a huge headache for the family.
But reporters weren't the only thing that the war with the Digimon brought. After avoiding a massive apocalypse, the families were even closer than ever before.
The Kanbara family talked about how much hours Takuya and Shinya spent playing soccer with each other. They were even surprised that there were times when their eldest son offered the family to cook, which was strange because he didn't know how to cook at first. Perhaps all that time spent in the Digital World has changed him. And it turns out that most of the dishes Takuya has prepared weren't that bad. Of course, he had Zoe's guidance and recipes.
Speaking of which, the Orimoto family wanted to hear all about Zoe's adventures in the Digital World. And so, their daughter told her parents everything about the excitement and fun she had while she was in the Digital World. She talked about most of the Digimon she had encountered and how some of them became her friends. Zoe also shared the many battles she fought with the forces of evil. And while it was an exciting story, Mr. and Mrs. Orimoto almost passed out at the fact that their daughter was in all of those fights.
Mr. and Mrs. Minamoto had also seen a change in Koji as well. Compared to last time, their son was a lot more open. Despite spending most of his time with his brother, Koji comes home and shares with his parents everything they did together. As for Koichi, he's been showing more support to his mother. He didn't have to be told to wash the dishes, clean his room, or finish his homework. Ms. Kimura is glad that Koichi has become more responsible since the Digimon incident.
Tommy's parents have been treating their youngest son more like an adult. Perhaps, the time spent in the Digital World and fighting the evil Digimon have brought out good changes to their eleven year old child. He's doing homework without being told, taking care of the house and even helping out his parents with the cooking. Mr. and Mrs. Himi smiled at their son. Spending time in the Digital World not only made him stronger, but has taught him a lot of life lessons as well.
Finally, Yutaka sat next to Hitomi Chisaki and talked about how the two of them got together. Even the kids on the other table were listening. Yutaka explained that the female officer visited the houses of the Chosen Children and personally thanked them for their services to the country and the world. But his younger brother was out with their parents. So, while waiting for Tommy to return, Yutaka invited her into his house and began talking. And from there, they started dating each other.
"Hey, watch it. I'm a much better person than what I was two years ago."
The children's table was much livelier than the adults. The food was delicious, which got the whole party going. But there was more laughter and noise coming from that area. Some of the kids just enjoyed their meal, while listening to their friends talk and brag about their accomplishments and lives. However, the most important thing is that everyone enjoyed each other's company.
Despite being away for four months, Teppei and Teruo still miss their Digimon partners. They had a blast fighting alongside them and using the Spirits to become Legendary Warriors. This would've turned depressing, if conversation of who could eat the most hadn't been brought up. Teruo and Teppei argued constantly whether Arbormon or Grumblemon could eat the most burgers.
Chiaki was the quietest of the group. The teenage girl just listened to her friends talked, while she ate her food. She lets out a soft giggle every time Katsuharu makes a joke or a comment about the evil Digimon. Meanwhile, most of the group noticed how Chiaki was staring at her friend awfully strangely; sometimes with a hint of red on her face. The only one who failed to notice was the former Bearer of Steel.
On the left side of the table, J.P. was being fed by his girlfriend, Nanami Kanao. She promised him one of her famous bento boxes when the war was over. However, she had to wait this long to share it with him because she wanted it to be perfect. So, she made him Chicken Karaage with some ginger, soy sauce, garlic and pepper for seasoning. And with grated daikon for finishers, this was the best dish J.P. has ever tasted. His mouth felt like it's in heaven.
Meanwhile, Tommy was getting bombarded with questions of how life is like with the country's most powerful officer as his brother's girlfriend. He replied that he had just found out today. While the eleven year old boy recalled that Hitomi Chisaki came to his house to personally thank him, he had no idea that Yutaka and the general were dating, nor what kind of stuff they did with each other.
Koji and Koichi conversed with their bandmates. So far, neither of them told their friends that they were Legendary Warriors who fought the bad guys to save the world. However, they did say that they were at Shibuya when the war began. The bandmates couldn't help but consider Koji and Koichi lucky for being so close to the action. But the twins grinned, since their friends don't even know half of it.
But it was Takuya and Zoe who did the most talking. They shared about their adventure on their second trip back to the Digital World. It was full of action, excitement, suspense and drama. Takuya talked about the Digimon Battlefront, while Zoe shared bits of information about her greatest nemesis, Beautymon. The whole group was engaged during the story. However, most of them were jealous that Takuya and Zoe got to go to the Digital World for a second time.
Once when almost everyone had finished the food, the twins and their bandmates returned to the instruments. There were two microphone stands in front of them, seemingly look like they were going to play some songs for the group.
Everyone had stopped what they were doing so they could give their attention to the former Bearers of Light and Darkness.
"What's up, everyone?"
Koji waited for the guests to settle down so that he can make his announcement.
"Alright! At this point, the band and I will play some songs for all of you! But before we get to that..."
The former Bearer of Light smirked at the leader of this whole group.
"... Takuya has some words he would like to share with you!"
"HUH?" The boy gasped.
"Ooh!" ||| "That's awesome!" ||| "This is going to be good!"
Zoe then grabbed her best friend by the hand and dragged him toward the front. Obviously, Takuya did not want to be part of this, nor had any idea he was going to make a speech. But everyone else seemed so insistent and wanting to hear what he has to say. Takuya grumbled to himself. He had a feeling that this was going to end up in disaster.
The boy stood before his guests, looking quite pale. Beads of sweat trickled down his face. He had no idea public speaking would be this difficult. He has fought countless of terrifying monsters and has faced the most ruthless Digimon of all time. However, he's having trouble coming up with the words to say to his friends and family.
At last, the boy approached the microphone.
"I, uh..." gulped Takuya. "Um... well, uh... Thanks for coming, hope you enjoyed the food and have a nice day! Okay, bye!"
Takuya would've escaped. But J.P. and Katsuharu blocked his path and escorted their leader back to the front of the stage. As Takuya trembled in on the spot, the others gave him some encouragement.
"Yeah!" ||| "Go for it, Takuya!" ||| "Make it good!" ||| "Do you best!" ||| "Don't be scared, honey!"
But he was still nervous. The fourteen year old boy thought that he was going to pass out in front of everyone. That's when he felt someone grabbing his hand. He gazed at the blonde beauty next to him, who gave him a soft smile.
"You can do it, Takuya."
It turns out that her support was enough to give him confidence. Takuya took a deep breath and spoke.
"To be honest, there was a point when I thought that we will never defeat Malestromon."
The whole backyard was now silent. They gave the boy their undivided attention, interested on what he has to say. This speech may be impromptu, but his words have an impact to the group before him.
"After all, Malestromon was unlike anyone my friends and I had faced. His maliciousness and power made him very tough to beat. His ruthlessness had no bounds. Everywhere Malestromon went, chaos and destruction were to follow. Most of the city was almost wiped out. Hundreds of people were annihilated. Thousands of innocent Digimon were destroyed because of him."
As Takuya said, the sights of the devastation caused by Malestromon still remained in the adults' minds. The hundreds of crushed vehicles, and destroyed buildings still haunt them to this day. There were so many casualties in the disastrous war. The group could only feel for those who gave up their lives during the fight.
"For a moment, victory seemed impossible. But... it wasn't. There is a reason why we were able to beat Malestromon. And that's because everyone was united with their desire to win. The power humans and Digimon bring from each other is amazing. I believe that we were able to use that power to its fullest."
Hitomi Chisaki smiled. Takuya is right, after all. The Japanese Self-Defense Forces couldn't defeat Malestromon by themselves. And she assumed that the Legendary Warriors couldn't do it alone as well. She's happy to do the right thing and join forces with the good Digimon. When humans and Digimon came together, the results speak for themselves. It was a spectacular sight.
"It wasn't easy. That's for sure."
Teppei could attest to that. In the beginning, he and Grumblemon didn't really get along. He had trouble connecting with the Digimon of Earth. But as time passed, Grumblemon earned Teppei's respect. They were able to create a powerful bond, which allowed them to Fusion Evolve and kick a ton of butt. Teppei took off his glasses and wiped his eyes, already missing his partner.
"There were trials and tribulations."
That's true for Teruo. He had trouble gaining Arbormon's trust. All the Digimon of Wood wanted was to gobble down burgers and get as far away from Teruo as possible. Later, it turns out that the two of them needed each other in order to save both worlds. And one thing both Teruo and Arbormon shared was the exhilarating feeling they had experienced when they Fusion Evolved.
"There were points where we wanted to give up."
Katsuharu never admitted it out loud, but it was difficult working with Mercurymon. The two just couldn't connect with one another. Mercurymon had trouble accepting humans as allies, especially Katsuharu. But when they were able to put their differences aside, they obtained a power that's greater than either of them. And because of that unity of human and Legendary Warrior, Chromiomon was born.
"But we all stayed together, no matter what the circumstances."
A small tear trickled down Chiaki's face. She had to put up with Ranamon's constant bickering and disrespect. But Chiaki knew it was all worth it. She was rewarded by helping her partner achieve Fusion Evolution. At the end of the day, Ranamon couldn't really express her gratitude to Chiaki. However, the smile on the young woman's face told her partner that she has no regrets.
"We won because we had important people to protect."
J.P. recalled him saving someone truly important to him as well. He glanced toward the brunette sitting next to him. Nanami wouldn't forget that day as well. In a sense, her knight in shining armor came to her rescue. Of course, it was the form of a gigantic beetle. But she had never seen J.P. so brave. From there, their friendship went to the next level. Nanami held on to J.P.'s hand, feeling safe next to her beloved.
"We had to fight to protect our families and friends."
Yutaka glanced toward his younger brother. He has come a long way since being a crybaby two years ago. Yutaka cannot describe how proud he was of his brother. As for Tommy, he reflected on how much he has grown up. Being a Legendary Warrior brought out the best of him. The eleven year old boy smiled to himself, recalling the way he transformed into Megatheriumon to save his entire family.
"If any one of us had been absent, we would've lost for sure."
Koji and Koichi grinned and nodded toward each other. Takuya is absolutely right. Individually, they can achieve so much. But as a team, there is no limit to what they can do. When BeoWolfmon and Rhihimon fought alongside each other, both Digimon were almost unstoppable. Being a twin does have its benefits. When they work as a team, they can accomplish anything.
"As long as we stick together, there is nothing we can't accomplish."
Zoe smiled widely with her beloved's proclamation. He cannot be more right. She wouldn't be standing here if it weren't for Takuya. Since the beginning, they had fought alongside each other and overcame any challenge. Together, they had restored the Digital World. Together, they had defeated Beautymon. Together, they stopped Malestromon from conquering their world. Zoe couldn't be happier, having someone like Takuya Kanbara in her life.
"And so, I just want to say one thing. Thank you, everyone. You all played a huge role in the battle against Malestromon and his army of evil Digimon. Remember, we were all united for a common purpose. As long as we fight as one and believe in each other, we will keep on winning. Humans and Digimon. Together."
Takuya raised a fist to the sky to bring home his point. One by one, the guests also raised their arms up to symbolize their teamwork and unity.
The former Bearer of Flame was showered with a huge ovation. One by one, the guests stood up and clapped their hands toward Takuya. The applause made the teenage boy scratch the back of his head in slight embarrassment. It wasn't the best speech he had given. But the young man was pretty satisfied with the words that came out of his mouth. It wasn't too bad, for an impromptu speech.
Moments later, Zoe approached her best friend.
"Well, how was I?"
"You were amazing." beamed the blonde beauty, placing a hand on his shoulder. "It could use a bit of polishing. But pretty good overall."
"Thanks, Z." The fourteen year old boy stuck his tongue out. "Now, come on. Let's get out of here before Koji and Koichi make me do something even more embarrassing."
"Oh, Takuya. What can be worse than you giving a speech to all of your guests?"
But it turns out that the twins have something especially planned for the couple, unbeknownst to the former Bearers of Flame and Wind.
"Alright, everyone! And now, a very special treat for all of you, courtesy of Takuya and Zoe!"
"HUH?" The couple gasped. They glowered at Koji and Koichi for pulling something off like this without their approval.
But obviously, the twins didn't care. They wanted to give the audience a good show. Sometimes, they have to improvise and put their best friends in situations such as this in order to entertain the guests. Takuya and Zoe are going to hate both of them for doing such a thing. However, the twins are confident that they will find it in their hearts to forgive them after seeing what they have in store for them.
"For our first performance, Takuya and Zoe are going to take the stage and perform to each and every one of you their 'favorite song!'"
The crowd went nuts after hearing that announcement.
"OOH!" ||| "REALLY?" ||| "OH, WOW!" ||| "INTERESTING!" ||| "THIS WILL BE GOOD!"
Meanwhile, Takuya and Zoe felt extremely embarrassed. The young man was pacing back and forth on the stage, trying to come up with some lame excuse to get out of here. As for Zoe, her face was as red as a tomato. It was taking every ounce of energy in her not to pass out. The couple looked at each other. They had a pretty good idea what song Koji and Koichi were talking about. Then again, singing it in front of the guests was a whole different story.
"And so, ladies and gentlemen, I give you Takuya and Zoe with their favorite song, 'An Endless Tale.'"
As if on cue, Shinya Kanbara dimmed the lights in the backyard for a more romantic kind of feel. A pair of lights highlighted the former Bearers of Flame and Wind. They stood in front of the audience, frozen on the spot. Singing 'their song' to each other was one thing. But now, they are being forced to sing it in front of the whole crowd. This is going to scar them for life, if something goes wrong.
*Insert Song: An Endless Tale (Karaoke Version)*
The keyboardist started with a chord of notes. With each measure, the music crescendos from soft to moderately loud. Meanwhile, the drummer, bassist and the twins eagerly waited for the keyboard player to give them the signal. Koji and Koichi could see the nervous look on Takuya's and Zoe's faces. They knew they were ready, even though they haven't realized it yet.
Slow and steady was the tempo provided by the drums. Koji and Koichi strummed their guitars to create a soothing, F Major tune. As the five instruments played, all of the attention shifted toward the couple. The guests waited anxiously for the two of them to sing, not caring how good or bad it might sound.
Realizing that they have no other option, the two performers stepped in front of the microphones and let everything out. Zoe sang the melody, while Takuya provided the harmony.
"Because of destiny;
It's difficult to see;
But we are meant to be."
It wasn't a bad start. If anything, that settled Takuya's and Zoe's nerves. Their introduction even earned a few 'Woos' from the crowd. Now that the couple felt comfortable with what they are doing, they continued singing with huge smiles on their faces.
"Overtime, I've kept these feelings deep within my heart;
I've loved you from the start;
Still I hold it to this day;
The promise that we made;
To see each other through."
Takuya diverted his attention to the lovely girl standing next to him. He has heard her sing a number of times. But this was special. Takuya could've sworn that he is standing beside an angel, who has the most beautiful voice of all. The way her hair dances with the wind and the way the light bounced off skin made Zoe more attractive than ever before.
On the other side, Zoe also glanced toward her best friend. At first, she thought that Takuya might be too embarrassed so sing in front of his friends and family, let along with her. But after singing the beginning portion of their favorite song, Zoe now sees her boyfriend in a new light. She had no idea she could sing this well, especially in such a situation.
The two smiled as each other as they took turns singing their solos.
"Though it's sad that we've gone our separate ways;" ||| "Why can't you stay;"
Once they were back together, Zoe took care of the melody while Takuya complimented her soothing voice.
"I believe that we will meet again someday."
Then came the chorus. The two finally met at the center of the stage. They had their microphones in one hand. And they also held each other's hand with the other. Their smiles grew as they sang their favorite part of the song.
"So hold onto me close and say we will be;
Forever bonded by the red threads of destiny;
Together we will share An Endless Tale about our love;"
"From 'Once upon a time;'" ||| "From 'Once upon a time;'"
"And to 'The End.'"
From there, the band moved on to the bridge of the song. The audience was captivated at such a lovely sight. Two close friends are singing with one another, expressing their true feelings to each other. Some of the parents cried tears of happiness for the couple. Others smiled at how cute Takuya and Zoe looks when they're together. As for Mr. Orimoto, he was thinking about going back into the Kanbara residence to retrieve his family sword. However, Mrs. Orimoto squeezed her husband's wrist really hard, wordlessly telling him not to.
As the twins and their bandmates continued playing, Takuya and Zoe removed their microphones off of the stands and met in the center of the stage. The young man pulled his best friend close to him. He put his right hand on the small of her back, while delicately wrapping his left hand around her right. Zoe held Takuya's back for support, feeling safe and secure. The couple danced with the music, like it's the Autumn Leaf Festival all over again.
The two then began to recall the events that brought them together. It all started with Takuya's informal confession in Ophanimon's Castle a couple of years ago. Then there was time when Zoe sang for her best friend in front of the whole school. The night when Takuya and Zoe danced behind the school made the two of the blush. Even the small picnic they had in Yoyogi Park was a small step in their relationship.
When they got back to the Digital World, that's where things started to pick up. Takuya and Zoe began seeing each other in a new light as they battled the evil Digimon and raced against the malicious emperor to collect the Legendary Spirits. Whether it was in the Flame Terminal, Breezy Village, Terra Hills, Toucanmon Paradise, Forbidden Forest, or the Icicle Mountains, they fought as a team. And the more battles they won, the closer they grew.
Of course, there were a few bumps along the way. There were times where they had heated arguments and fights, which almost ended their friendship. For example, the two of them had a few altercations when retrieving the Legendary Spirits of Wood. Takuya also remembered being under IceLadyDevimon's control, who used him to almost destroy his best friend. Then again, Zoe also recalled being under the malignant emperor's control, forcing her to annihilate her best friend.
There were times when the couple had almost lost one another. A prime example of this was when the ruthless ruler kidnapped Zoe, forced her to fight his minions and use her as a bargaining chip to make Takuya forfeit all of the Legendary Spirits. The former Bearer of Flame had no idea what he would've done if he never saw his beloved alive ever again. But despite the hardships they had faced, it made them that much stronger and that much closer.
A huge testament of their relationship was the wild love triangle they had with Beautymon. She pulled every trick in the book to get with Takuya, while getting rid of Zoe at the same time. Beautymon did everything she could to get what she wanted, even spellbind her 'Cutie' to get him in her quarters and have fun with her. Thankfully, Zoe was there to stop the olive haired Digimon and put her behind bars for the time being.
Things got intense when Beautymon betrayed her comrades and put everything on the line to make Takuya hers. This was the fight of her life in Zoe's opinion. She will never forget how she had invited Takuya to her house and tried to force him to make love to her. And when the fight got underway, Takuya thought he was going to be sick after seeing the things Beautymon had did to his best friend.
But she not only survived the onslaught of attacks from her opponent, but she also endured an enormous and excruciating amount of pain to show her love for Takuya. It didn't matter what happened to her. As long as her best friend was safe, that's all she cared about. As for Takuya, he will never forget the way Zoe finally Fusion Evolved to JetSilphymon for the first time and finished off the traitor once and for all, which was the ultimate confirmation that she is strong enough to protect Takuya. Thanks to her determination and love for her best friend, Zoe proved that she's the one for him.
However, it wasn't just the fights that brought them together. Takuya and Zoe will never forget that night when they finally confessed their feelings to each other. They first played a little 'Truth or Dare Soccer' to get to know each other. One thing lead to another. And before Takuya and Zoe knew it, they were in each other's arms, sharing their very first kiss with each other.
And who could forget the Autumn Leaf Festival? The lights, noise and carnival games they played were unforgettable. The fun they had during the Scavenger Hunt was one of their best moments. The Festival Dance was unforgettable. But the best way to cap off such a magical and unforgettable night was when they watched the fireworks together while sitting atop of the Ferris Wheel.
Each memory brought the couple smiles and tears. All of the hardships they had endured and the happy times they had shared has made them what they are today. And as the two of them danced to the music, a faint image of Agunimon and Kazemon appeared in the back of the party. They gazed at their partners, while sharing a loving embrace. They are perfect for each other, just like them.
Finally, the dancing had stopped and the couple continued with their song. However, they remained in each other's arms, staring into their mesmerizing eyes.
"There are times when we don't know where we will go from here;
The future's never clear;
But no matter what's in store;
We will be forevermore;
Together till the end."
Takuya brushed a lock of hair from the blonde beauty so that he could see her face.
"There were ups and downs, but we fought through;" ||| "That's what we do;"
Zoe melted in her beloved's embrace. This was a dream come true, singing her favorite song and dancing with her best friend.
"I believe that is why I'm here with you."
The second chorus is about to get underway. Takuya wiped the tears off of his best friend's cheek and held her chin with his finger.
"Wrapped tightly in your arms it's hard not to cry;
The tears roll down my cheeks as you are waving goodbye;
Your presence in my life has made me who I am today;"
"No matter where we go;" ||| "No matter where we go;"
"I'm not alone."
The song is almost over. Takuya and Zoe finally parted. However, their hands still held one another. The couple faced the stage and finished the song with every ounce of emotion and soul poured out to it.
"So hold onto me close and say we will be;
Forever bonded by the red threads of destiny;
Together we will share An Endless Tale about our love;"
At last, the former Bearers of Flame and Wind gazed into each other's eyes and drew close to one another.
"From 'Once upon a time;'" ||| "From 'Once upon a time;'"
"And to 'The End.'"
Koji and Koichi nodded to their bandmates to wrap it up. As the instruments played the finale of the performance, Takuya and Zoe closed their eyes and tilted their heads to the side. They could hear the keyboards finishing up with a few more high notes and soothing chords. The song began to slow down. But instead of ending the song right away, the band waited for Takuya and Zoe to make their move.
Finally, the couple pressed lips.
The band held the last note to conclude the performance. As Takuya and Zoe kissed, the crowd was going berserk. Katsuharu and his friends stood up and cheered. Tommy whistled loudly to show his support. J.P. and Nanami also applauded. They shared a quick glance, wondering if that will be them someday. Yutaka grinned, which was the only emotion he showcased. But that didn't mean he enjoyed the performance. As for Hitomi Chisaki, she used a handkerchief to wiped the wet streams off of her face. Even for a high ranking officer, she has no trouble showing her feelings on something she absolutely adores.
Hiroaki and Yuriko Kanbara are so proud of their son. They are glad that he has found someone who has make him so happy. The two of them are made for each other. Even Shinya is happy for Takuya. His older brother had made the right choice in having Zoe as his girlfriend. She's just awesome. Shinya couldn't wait tell Zoe embarrassing tales and memories about his brother.
Meanwhile, Mrs. Orimoto is very happy for her daughter. Ever since Zoe and her boyfriend had been dating, she has been blooming with confidence. Takuya has brought out a special change out of her. As for Mr. Orimoto, he kept his eye on the young man. It'll take some time for him to fully trust Takuya. But as long as he protects his daughter, perhaps he could warm up to him.
Finally, there is the faint image of Agunimon and Kazemon that only remained in the background for a few moments. Despite being dimensions apart, they still feel the strong bond with their partners and the closeness they have with one another. The Digimon of Flame and Wind are confident that they will be just fine on their own. Agunimon smiled at the lavender haired beauty, held her arm and turned around. As the Warriors of Flame and Wind exchanged a loving kiss, they turned around and faded back to the Digital World.
The bond of human and Digimon can never be severed, like the bonds of love.
After a while, Takuya and Zoe parted. They gave each other soft smiles as if they are living in a dream come true. They held each other tight, never wanting to let go of each other's arms. So much has happened ever since the two of them became a couple. Who would've thought that saving two worlds and stopping a malevolent ruler from would bring Takuya and Zoe closer than ever before? Even though both of them have no idea what the future has in store for them, they will stand by each other's side and face whatever may come to them.
"I love you, Takuya."
"I love you too, Zoe."
This unforgettable story is An Endless Tale that encompasses centralized themes about the power of determination, unity, friendship and love. When one never quits, he/she can do anything. By working together as a team, like humans and Digimon for example, they can accomplish much more than doing it alone. That's where the power of friendship comes in. Having friends can give someone strength to overcome any obstacle. But in the case of Takuya Kanbara and Zoe Orimoto, their friendship turned into something so much more. Their adventures in the Digital World is an attestation of how love conquers all. And through these many lessons, a special message is conveyed to those who wish to dive into this story.
If we're all for one world, there is a world for us all.
Author's Notes: So, that's the story.
I want to thank everyone who has reviewed, favorited or followed my story. I am eternally grateful for all of your support for five years. Seeing all of the reviews come in and the people adding my story to their Favorites/Follows list makes me very happy. I had fun answering all of your questions and reading your feedback. Whether it was positive, negative or constructive, it has made me a better writer than ever before. Never in my life I had ever thought that my story would have this many reviews, this many Favorites, this many Follows or this much attention. Your support and encouragement has helped me on this five year journey. What a ride it has been.
Thank you all for reading my story: Digimon Frontier: Chaos Rising.
*Don't forget to review!*