Into Darkness Shall I Fall
Part 4 - Requiem for the Gods
Standard disclaimers apply.
SPOILER WARNING: Spoilers for 02 (that's season 2 for the
uninitiated) up to and including the episodes involving the first
appearance of the Crest of Kindness.
SHONEN AI WARNING: This is a shonen ai fic and contains within it
romantic themes and hints of an intimate relationship between two
male characters. If this disturbs you in any way PLEASE do not
continue reading. And yes, I am sick and twisted, thanks for asking.
The Digital World: a wild, primitive world made entirely out of code.
But wasn't all reality based upon one code or another, be it genetic,
molecular or digital? There really was no difference, a fact he
should have seen sooner. It would have been his vast Empire of Folly
and he, its Kaiser of Death... or at least, that had been the plan.
Events had just simply transpired against him, something he was quite
thankful for now.
He had wanted, no, had needed to own it completely. And once he had
had it, he would have held it all in the palm of his hand and wrung
out every single drop of blood that he knew lurked just beneath the
sand, within the ground and the water and even the very air itself.
He could smell the stomach churning odor of it even now, could taste
the faint metallic tang in the back of his throat.
He had wanted this corrupt world, the product of a freak twist in
reality that had been born from that creation of humankind known as
the computer. How could it not be corrupt? Everything humans touched
was corrupted in one manner or another.
Then again, maybe he was just too cynical and twisted for his own
good, or anyone else's for that matter. Well, either that or he
really was psychotic, and wouldn't that be fun.
Didn't he have these very same thoughts recently though? Perhaps not
with the exact same wording, but with the same intent. It was the
same bitter regard that had sent him into madness in the first place.
So why did he keep coming back to this point? He knew better, yet
inevitably he would return nonetheless. When had his life becomes
such an inescapable circle of despair? He just didn't know.
He was in that place again, dreaming again. That was assuming it
was just a dream. It could be something else, though he had no clue
what. Everything had always been strange since he had received the
digivice, he could never quite figure out what was real and what
wasn't until it was usually too late.
This felt real, but that didn't tell him much. Many things had felt
real before and had turned out to be mere illusions. It was hot,
sweltering. He could feel the sun beating down on him, as if it were
a living thing bent on burning everything to ash. A breeze brushed
against his cheek, but did nothing to relieve him from the heat. He
could smell the dead, cracked earth below and the dust that arose
It was the desert again, he knew without even having to open his
eyes. He had known even before he could identify the sensations he
felt. He knew it was the same desert from before and that's why he
didn't want to look. He knew someone else was waiting for him. All he
had to do was open his eyes and then he would see who it was. And it
scared him, because he knew it was someone who shouldn't be there. It
was someone who was dead.
"Don't you hate it here sometimes?"
The voice sent a shiver up his spine. It was one he hadn't heard in a
long time, but one he had missed terribly all the same, even if he
hadn't remembered who it belonged to at times. The tone was casual,
making the question seem as if it wasn't quite so bitter. Ken knew
better than that though, he had always had a way of making deadly
serious situations seem like a walk in the park. He had always
hated it when Ken worried.
Ken opened his eyes slowly, feeling a little thrill of happiness as
he focused on the teenage boy sitting at the edge of the cliff with
his back to him. Ryo. It had been so long since Ken had seen him, but
yet at the same time it felt as if time hadn't passed at all. Or
perhaps, it had simply passed him by without his noticing. It still
felt... good to see him.
Ryo looked the same as he always had. Though that was no surprise,
Kageko had looked the same too. He knew they were both dead, but his
mind refused to acknowledge it. He wanted the illusion, or whatever
it was, for the little time he could have it. It was worth it just to
see Ryo wearing that silly looking military style shirt and those old
cargo pants again. His hair was just as messy as it had always been,
though it had never been as wild as- ... well, it had always been
more contained than certain others'.
Ryo shifted as Ken watched, drawing his right leg up and resting his
chin on his knee. He didn't turn to look back at Ken, didn't give any
indication that he knew he was there other than the question from
before. Then, Ryo asked again, "Don't you?"
"Sometimes, though it's more me than it," Ken answered finally as he
mulled over the significance of the subject. The Digital World had
been one of the very few things they had had in common, but sometimes
it hadn't been a fun place to be. At times, it had been far more
dangerous than he had wanted to admit. Ryo and Kageko had been there
for him though, so it hadn't been too bad. It had been very different
afterwards... very lonely.
"Everything about yourself that you hate the Digital World did to
you," Ryo said blandly as he picked a rock up off of the ground and
tossed it out to fall to the ground far below.
Ken frowned and walked over to his old friend, settling himself
gingerly down on the edge of the cliff. If he ever wanted to try
flying, or dying, this would be the perfect place to do it. The empty
desert stretched to the horizon, a vast expanse of familiar nothing.
"Not everything," he said at last, wincing at the memories of the
vicious jealousy that had burned within him whenever his parents had
ignored him in favor of Osamu.
Ryo simply grunted in response and tossed another rock out, watching
it fall for the scant few seconds before it faded from view. "I hate
it here," he said rather forcefully after a moment's pause. He
flicked his gaze over at Ken for a second before looking back out at
the desert of nothing below.
Ken blinked in surprise at that. Ryo had always seemed to like the
Digital World. Whenever he was here-... there, he had always been
less concerned about appearing to be a dork to other people, his own
words, and had just enjoyed being himself for a change. It had seemed
so much better there than it had been for them in the real world. It
was a freedom, of sorts, that they couldn't find anywhere else. So
what had happened to alter that? What had changed? "Why?" Ken asked
Ryo answered him with a defeated sigh, "There's no choice left. It
takes everything away and gives you nothing in return."
"Oh, I don't know," Ken murmured as he drew his right leg up and rest
his chin upon his knee, unconsciously mimicking Ryo's position. He
squinted his eyes as he gazed out across the barren desert and
towards the horizon. Back then he used to wonder what lay beyond it
and all the things that he would see if he just journeyed far enough.
In that not so distant past, the Ken who had existed hadn't been
ruled by fear, had in fact been curious about the wonderful new world
they had been brought to. Funny how things can change, how people can
change so swiftly. That Ken was long gone, gone to dust, with only a
fool of a monster to take his place.
"You don't know?" Ryo looked at Ken as if he had gone mad, an apt
word to describe his actions since they had last parted. Well, the
ones that he could remember at the very least. "What's there not to
"Is the Digital World really the sole thing responsible from our
'fall from grace'?" Ken asked conversationally as he flicked his gaze
from his friend to the desert and back again. "Isn't it what we
wanted really? To escape from the misery that was our lives back home
even if for just a little while?"
Ryo snorted derisively. "That's your idea of an escape? Two of us
dead here, another casualty in the real world, and then, of course,
there was you, Ken." Ryo eyes turned cold and dead as he continued,
"You went insane from what Millenniumon did to you. You lost yourself
thanks to this damned place. And you're even more lost now than you
Ken frowned as he tried to figure out what Ryo meant in regards to
what Millenniumon had done to him. There had been the many, many
battles and the fear that they might not survive through to the next,
but that didn't seem to be dire enough to drive him to 'insanity'.
Actually, now that he thought about it, nothing he could remember
seemed to fit into an equation involving Millenniumon and his own
insanity. "What do you mean when you say what Millenniumon did to me?
What did he do to me?" Ken asked suspiciously.
"You don't remember," Ryo said evenly, making it sound more like a
fact that he already had knowledge of than a possible question. "Hmm,
maybe that's for the best then."
"There are a lot of things that I don't remember," Ken ground out. He
certainly liked seeing Ryo again, but he did not like having his
chain yanked yet again over these ever elusive memories that he had
no recollection of. "And you know what? I'm starting to get the
impression that not remembering at this point is a bad thing."
Ryo laughed outright at Ken's change of mood. "You sound just like
Osamu now. He always hated it when people hedged around things that
he really wanted to know. He was very impatient in that regard."
Blinking in surprised at Ryo's comment on his behavior, Ken searched
quickly for a response that he didn't consider loaded, "Yes... yes,
he was. Though, it wasn't just people that annoyed him as far as that
was concerned. He was just as annoyed when my digivice showed up as
when you two first tried to discuss the Digital World without getting
into another hours long argument. Which you failed to avoid, I might
"We were always arguing about one thing or another," Ryo smiled sadly
as he spoke of what they both considered happier memories. "If we
weren't arguing about something, we were getting ready to argue. I
think the only times we actively avoided trying to set each other off
was whenever Kageko was around. There are only so many times the male
ego can stand being called a complete and utter idiot by the same
"She never called me an idiot," Ken sniffed haughtily as he attempted
to push the nastier emotions from before into the background. This
brief moment wouldn't last forever. He knew that. He shouldn't spoil
what little time they had left together.
"That's because you were a cute, little kid who could do no wrong in
her eyes," Ryo said teasingly as he nudged playfully at Ken with his
elbow. "And don't tell me you didn't use that to your advantage. I
was there. I saw it all."
"Now now, you weren't there for everything," Ken blurted out before
his mind caught up with his tongue. He winced at the shadows of pain
his words caused to appear in the depths of Ryo's eyes. Ryo always
did have this effect on him, causing him to forget to think carefully
before opening his mouth. He had forgotten. "I'm sorry, that didn't
come out the way I meant it to."
"No need to apologize. It is the truth after all." Ryo turned his
gaze back out to the wastelands below, as if by doing so he could
distance himself from all the past mistakes and hurt feelings that
still weighed heavily on both of their souls. "I wasn't always there
for you or Kageko or even Osamu. And we all died because of it."
"Not all of us," Ken said quietly in rebuttal, "I'm still here."
"Why is that?" Ryo asked as he climbed to his feet, uncaring of how
precarious his perch had been. He scowled slightly down at his pants
as he attempted to brush off some of the dusty dirt that had
accumulated on them during their conversation. It was obviously a
question he didn't expect Ken to have the answer to as he asked
another more specific one a moment later, "Do you really want to stay
However, Ken found both questions to be equally baffling. "I don't
understand," he muttered, feeling almost as if he were a little kid
again who just couldn't understand the big people no matter how hard
he tried. "What are you trying to get at?"
"You don't have to stay here Ken," Ryo explained as he offered his
hand to the best friend he had unwittingly left behind years ago.
"You don't have to be alone anymore. You can come join us."
Ken's eyes widened in shocked horror as it all clicked into place and
he truly understood what Ryo was offering him. It was the same as it
had been with Kageko, and yet somehow completely different. He
supposed it was because they had never gone about doing things the
same way. "I-I can't," he said, grasping for the words even as he
tried his best not to stumble over them as he spoke, "I have
"So did I," Ryo smiled kindly as he took his hand back, physically
retracting his offer as he spoke, "You'd be surprised at how
insignificant those supposed responsibilities become when it's time
to go." Turning slightly, he lost his smile as he looked out across
the land below. "It's like nothing you've ever experienced before.
It's a freeing of everything, a freedom we could never find in this
life and one this world would never let us have."
"I don't want that," Ken murmured, shying his emotions away as best
he could from the actual subject they were discussing. "I don't
deserve it either."
"Don't be ridiculous. You deserve a lot more than you'll give
yourself credit for," Ryo argued, waving his left hand in the air as
if to brush the thought of what Ken did and did not deserve out of
existence. "And I know you're lying about not wanting it. You've
Ken scowled, it was true in a sense but he doubted it had been that
simple. "I don't even remember the majority of that, much less
anything else from around that time. I don't even have scars to show
that it did happen. But that's beside the point, you and I both know
that it had to be something much more serious than just me wanting to
die to get to that point."
"All right, you win on that point." Ryo chuckled and smiled again as
he looked back down at Ken. "I'm afraid it's almost time to go now.
Since you don't want to come with me I guess all I can do is give you
this," Ryo said sadly as he searched around in the many pockets of
his cargo pants. After a few moments of fishing, he pulled a violet
tinged crystal out of one of the bigger pockets. "Here we go. This is
yours. You should have it back now." With that, Ryo reached over and
deposited the crystal into Ken's right hand before he could come up
with a suitable argument.
They had only just returned from their search for the pieces of the
Digimental of Kindness when Gennai had pulled Kageko off to the side
and started discussing something with her in a hushed tone. Ken
would have been hurt by getting left out in the lurch yet again had
Kageko not insisted on stopping by Nanomon's Server to see if any
digimon of note had shown up before heading back to Gennai's house.
Strangely enough, Nanomon had been more than agreeable to foisting a
Tokomon off on them. Ken certainly wasn't going to look a gift horse
in the mouth since Kageko had handed it to him with the excuse that
she and vaccines just didn't get along all that well.
He knew that her real reasons were more along the lines of wanting
him to have better protection than just Wormmon, but he was too
thrilled by her giving him a digimon to tame to be concerned by
them. Wormmon didn't seem to be bothered by it too much, he was Ken's
real partner after all. Besides, the Tokomon had already given him
something of an acknowledging sniff already and was now happily
trundling around Ken's feet in what seemed to be contentment.
"All right, it shouldn't be too hard to do."
Ken perked up as Kageko's voice finally broke over the hushed
conversation. They had apparently come to some sort of agreement
because Gennai shuffled off muttering about needing to get some
supplies from the shops in town. Kageko shook her head in bemusement
at him before joining Ken.
"Gennai want me to help him build something he's calling a Reload
Machine," she explained as she knelt down and scratched his new
Tokomon behind the ears. "We should be able to use it to get in
contact with Ryo, but it's going to take most of the night to build.
Will you be okay on your own for that long?"
"Sure," Ken chirped, pleased that Kageko's thoughts on his ability to
take care of himself seemed to be shifting. "You don't need any help
"Nah, I'm sure it'll be fine. Though, I'll probably end up getting a
massive headache from the wiring," she admitted ruefully. "I'd much
rather deal with the prissiness of a rose bush than the asinine way
most computers around here are wired."
"Oh, okay," Ken blinked in curiosity at her words. Sometimes Kageko
used the strangest terms to describe stuff. "We'll be fine."
"Well," Kageko began as Libra popped out from behind her and strolled
over towards the living room couch, "Libra's tired so she's going
take a nap in here. Just wake her up and tell her to sniff me out if
you need anything."
"Are you sure that's a good idea?" Ken asked warily, not sounding too
thrilled at the possibility of waking up a sleeping adult digimon who
had just a week ago smacked Ryo but good for blocking the sunlight in
her favorite snooze spot. Ryo really should have known better than to
put yet another piece of old computer hardware that he planned to
tinker with in that particular spot.
"She won't take your head off. Promise. Right dear?" Libra's only
reply was an almost inaudible grumble as she curled up on the couch.
Kageko chuckled, and said reassuringly as she stood up, "Don't worry
Ken, she wouldn't hurt you. You're not anywhere near as annoying as
she thinks Ryo is."
"Gennai said Nanimon will bring dinner by for us later, so you don't
need to worry about that either," Kageko informed him as she
stretched. Her muscles would be stiff enough soon from having to
hunch over while putting together Gennai's machine. She didn't need
to start off the project with any kinks.
"'kay." Ken smiled cheerfully as Kageko reached over and ruffled his
hair before heading off into one of the back rooms. He waited several
minutes to make sure she wouldn't come back before he looked over at
the couch and asked, "Libra, are you still awake?"
Not even twitching a whisker in acknowledgment, she answered simply,
"Is it true Kageko doesn't really get along well with vaccines?" Ken
asked carefully, hoping Libra wouldn't take any offense at his
questioning of Kageko's reason for not wanting to take care of the
"She already told you that, but yes, she would much rather prefer to
tame a virus or a data," Libra grumbled, one golden eye opening to a
mere slit to glare balefully at him.
"Why doesn't she like them?" Ken asked curiously as he bent down and
scratched his Tokomon behind the ear in the same place Kageko had.
"It's not a question of whether she likes them personally or not.
It's rather their basic nature that annoys her," Libra explained as
her eyelid slid closed once again. "They share the same nature as
viruses. They're just named differently and have a different stated
purpose. It really is much the same though and so it's more like a
half-truth than anything else and you know how she gets about the
"Oh." That made sense, sort of. He knew that in the real world
vaccines were simply made from the viruses they were meant to
prevent, so it was probably the same way with computer viruses, or
something similar at least. And Kageko tended to like stating things
the way they really were instead of hiding behind silly pretenses, as
she had put it on several occasions. Thus, she'd most likely prefer
actual viruses to something that was pretty much the same thing with
just a different name tagged onto it.
The trek through Millenniumon's floating continent had seemed like an
unending battle. Every time they thought they'd have a chance to rest
there would be yet another group of enemy digimon right around the
corner to fight. It was almost over now, though. The path through the
last server had spiraled ever inward as they had fought their way
through until there was only one possible place left to go: the
There was a door barring their path, just one single metal door, dark
and forbidding. Once he might have found it frightening, but that was
before Millenniumon's war against the Digital World had bled the fear
out of him until all that was left was pure exhaustion. He was so
tired. All that he wanted to do was go back to Gennai's house and
collapse for a week or two, but he couldn't. There was still one
battle left to fight.
Kageko leaned tiredly against her Devidramon, Loki, one of the twin
Pagumon she had rescued from Millenniumon's army. They had hooked
their D-3s together to scan the door for any possible booby traps.
The process took some time, but it had to be done. They couldn't
afford any more injuries before the final battle. As it was, Libra
and Wormmon were the only digimon that didn't sport any injuries. Ken
hadn't allowed Wormmon to even fight because he still couldn't
evolve. Libra, on the other hand, had avoided injury because her
speed was phenomenal in her Valkyramon evolution.
Ken's Holy Angemon and Angewomon had specifically been targeted by a
Piemon and a Vamdemon respectively once they had reached the final
server. They hadn't come out of that unscathed, but at least they had
made it through the fights without getting deleted. Loki and Savali,
Kageko's Devidramon and Tekkamon, had suffered a similar type of
attack when they had come up against a Metal Seadramon and a
Pinocchimon, but they had managed to survive as well. They were tired
and injured, but they knew that none of them could stop just yet.
Deciding that that train of thought needed to be derailed, Ken
fought back a yawn and asked, "Do you think he's here?"
Kageko didn't even open her eyes as she answered, "It doesn't really
matter, either he's in here in our half of the Digital World or he's
in Ryo's. And where ever he is, we still have to fight the master of
this continent to free our half."
"I guess," Ken muttered, more to himself than anybody else. He smiled
when his Angewomon reached down and gave him a reassuring pat on the
shoulder. She and his Holy Angemon cared about him, he knew, even if
they weren't his permanent partner like Wormmon. Before he had ever
come to the Digital World, no one had really cared much about how he
felt, but since then he had found Kageko, Ryo and their digimon and
even his own. They all cared a great deal about him, and as horrible
as the fight against Millenniumon had gotten, part of him wished it
didn't have to end. Once it was over, he'd have to go home and leave
his digimon behind and that was just something he wasn't sure he
I really need to think about something else, Ken thought as he shook
his head. "Do you think Ryo's okay?" he asked, once again trying to
derail his thought processes.
"I'm sure he's fine. He's probably made it to the same place by now.
There's certainly been enough time for him to fight his way through,"
Kageko said through a yawn as she reached up to scratched Loki on the
snout. During their last talk with Ryo through the Reload Machine
they had decided that twin assaults on the floating continent in both
halves of the Digital World would be best. If Millenniumon could
shift himself between both halves then at least there would be
someone in both places to fight him. It wasn't the greatest plan they
had ever come up with, but it had seemed like the best course of
action at the time. They were all more than tired of beating back
Millenniumon's army again and again.
It was time to finish it.
It had not in fact been Millenniumon who had waited for them behind
the great metal door, it had been a Mugen Dramon and an Apocalymon.
Neither had felt the need to waste their breath on their foes and had
simply attacked. All of their digimon had been hard pressed to keep
from getting deleted. Angewomon had actually suffered what should
have been a deathblow from Apocalymon when the battlefield became
awash with the light of two evolution. When the light died down, a
Freymon and Holy Dramon hovered where Libra and Angewomon had been.
It had still been an unfair fight, but an unfair fight they had
somehow weathered. Apocalymon had eventually fallen to the combined
efforts of Libra, Holy Angemon and Holy Dramon before they had turned
their ire to Mugen Dramon. With all of their digimon attacking Mugen
Dramon at the same time, Ken had thought it would be over quickly. It
should have been.
Mugen Dramon had laughed as he carelessly swatted Loki away, sending
the Devidramon tumbling back into Holy Dramon. "Do you really think
you can win?"
"You understand nothing," he hissed then, backing away from the
advancing Holy Angemon. "Breaking the Digital World in half separates
everything into twos. Everything." Backing away even further, he
dropped his metal jaw in what must have been his form of a grin as he
continued, "It has been amusing watching you act in my grand play.
And I must admit, you surpassed my wildest expectations getting here,
both you and Ryo. Oh yes, Ryo, even now he battles against my other
self. He would win, and so would you, if I were not who I am."
Ken could only stare in confusion as Kageko spat venomously, "You
split yourself in half again, didn't you, you son of a bitch?"
"You always did catch on quick, my dear," Mugen Dramon laughed, "But
yes, you are correct. Chimeramon in one half of the Digital World and
Mugen Dramon in the other, both halves of the same whole. It was
rather poetic, if I do say so myself."
"Get ready Ken," Kageko murmured. But get ready for what? Ken really
wasn't sure what was going to happen now. He knew that Millenniumon
was actually a jogress of a Chimeramon and Mugen Dramon, this one
apparently. Were they going to join back together? How were they
going to do that if they were in separate worlds?
"Yes, it's time to bring it all back together," Mugen Dramon said
quietly as he began to glow with an unearthly light. "And how fitting
to bring it all crashing down onto the desert of our beginning."
Ken covered his eyes as the light grew brighter and brighter until it
was blinding, and still it continued to grow. And then, the floor
began to shake and a deafening roar filled the air. He thought he
could hear the walls cracking around them and the horrible rending
sound of metal being torn apart, but he couldn't be sure as the roar
grew louder and louder.
Arms wrapped around him then, pulling him up off of the quaking
floor. A cool breath against his ear and Holy Angemon's voice brought
an explanation of sorts. "We must fly. He is bringing the entire
There were many horrific things Ken had witnessed in the few times he
had been to the Digital World, but they all seemed to pale in that
instant. Nothing could quite compare in his mind to the awful sight
of watching an entire continent shatter and fall and knowing that
even with such devastation it was not over.
Maybe... it never would be over.
Well, that took, oh, almost a year to write. *facepalms* Okay, I will
admit to being a lazy bitch at times, but I suppose nearly a year is
a bit much. Apologies all around. I didn't mean for this particular
plotbunny to languish so, but those were the results either way.
Okay, what else... Oh! Ken's Holy Angemon and Angewomon are not
Takeru and Hikari's. They're just a random Tokomon and Nyaromon that
popped up for Ken to tame. Also, it's been asked before, but Libra,
obviously at this point, is not the present Lady Devimon. Though,
Koimon is a child and her adult form has not made an appearance yet.
Valkyramon and Freymon, Libra's perfect and ultimate forms, are
actually original evolutions of my own making. I didn't get into
describing either at this point as there will be other, better
opportunities to do so later on in this particular fic universe.
Assuming I can get off my ass to write the rest... *sighs*
I should also state that Vain is mostly to blame (again) for this
part actually getting done. Though, *cough* I think she did mention
the vampire fic first, but I didn't feel like writing vamp!Daisuke
and *cough* certain other things from that fic. Maybe next time.