Episode 26:

"Beauty and the Beastmon"


Sara Gibson

* * *

~~~ Jennifer's P.O.V. ~~~

Hello again. Well, looks like we got ourselves another bad guy to face. As if Marajamon wasn't bad enough. While we were having some quiet time in forest, Duodramon comes at us out of nowhere! When he set his sights on Lexxy Cunomon let him have it! This soon led to the appearence of his Ultimate form, DracoSartomon. Duodramom may have been huge but he wasn't exactly brightest crayon in the box, which I'm sure will can work to out advantage. DracoSartomon sent the big baby home crying to his Digi-mommy. I have a feeling we'll be seeing Duodramon again real soon but for now the Digiworld is safe for another day!

* * *

Jenn reached the top of the hill they had been climbing for several minutes and paused, staring off into the trees around them and waiting for the others to catch up. As she paused Lexxy, who was beside her with her laptop, stopped as well, looking up for a moment to see where they were. She saw a road sign posted in the center of an area marked with yellow paint and went back to studying the map, checking to see if it was listed anywhere.

As she looked up Jenn peaked over her shoulder and studied the map for a few moments as the rest of the group came up to them. "This way guys," she said, waving her hand and starting past the sign that read 'Numemon Crossing.'

As the group followed a loud rumbling began, causing the Digimon and their partners to look up in time to see a stampede of Numemon run across the marked area and sweep Alex and Nerimon off their feet. As the Numemon cleared the boys reappeared and the group laughed loudly as they continued walking. "GUYS!" Alex called as they scrambled up. "Wait up!" he hollered after them, chasing as fast as he could.

As they scrambled to catch up Alex paused for a moment, turning to look behind them. "Hello?" he asked the trees he saw.

"Alex!" Nerimon yelled as he caught up with the others, "Let's go!"

"Coming!" Alex replied as he ran toward them.

When he turned around a Sukamon and Chuumon poked their heads out of the tree they had been hiding in while Alex was looking back. They looked at one another and half-jumped half-fell out of the tree, following the Digidestined.

After a few moments of walking Cheekomon spoke, "Hey Erica?"

"Hmm?" Erica asked, turning toward her partner.

"You should sing!" Cheekomon said with a smile. "You sounded really good back at the saloon and it's soooooo depressing just walking. . . ."

Erica turned red. "No . . . I mean, I'm not that good. . . ." She stared at the ground as the other people egged her on.

"Come on, Erica!" Alex said over the urges. "You can do it!" He flashed a smile and a thumbs up.

"Well . . . I guess I could sing something. . . ." She thought for a moment.

"I know!" she said with a snap of her fingers. She started very softly, gradually getting louder:

I woke up today with this feeling, better things are coming my way, I know the sunshine has a meaning, and nothing left can get in my way, when the rainy days are dying, gotta keep on, keep on trying, all the bees and birds are flying. Ahhh…. Never let go gotta hold on and, nonstop 'til the break of dawn and, keep on moving , don't stop rocking Ahhh…."

As she started the next chorus everyone except the Digimon began to sing with her:

"Get on up when you're down baby, take a good look around, I know it's not much but it's ok, we'll keep on movin' on anyway…"

The entire group sang along as they walked.

Completely unnoticed behind them, Sukamon and Chuumon danced to the song, the two Digimon seeming to be in a daze as they followed along, dancing as they went.

* * *

That night the group gathered around a camp fire, talking and laughing as they told stories about how they created their Digimon, how they got to the digital world, and how their feet hurt. They ate as they talked, finishing the food from lunch and packing the rest away for future use.

Alex and Erica sat next to each other with either Digimon on either side, neither looking directly at the other one when they spoke. Ever since he had saved her things had been changing between them. Alex was ever the hopeless romantic and, although she would never admit it, Erica was a little bit of one too. The too Digimon finished their food and looked up at their partners, giggling at the tension between them.

Alex stared at the extra piece of steak he had gotten for the sole purpose of asking Erica if she wanted it and took a deep breath. "Uh . . . you, want the last of my steak?" he asked, trying to hide the redness in his cheeks.

Erica looked over in surprise at the food. "Oh, no thanks. I'm stuffed," she said, shaking her head. "But thanks." Erica watched as Cheekomon yawned and said, "I guess it's time for bed." She stood and walked toward her 'bed.' "See ya tomorrow guys," she said, stretching as she walked toward the makeshift bed.

Alex watched her, not even aware he was gawking until something splashed all over him. "COLD!" he said loudly, jumping up off the log he and Erica had been sitting on.

He looked wildly around and saw Samee standing with a dripping palm leaf in her hands and a large smile on her face. "You looked like you needed a cold shower," she said as nonchalantly as she could before she walked away.

Alex forced a smirk as the others laughed. He looked over and saw Erica sleeping, a fact he was very happy about. He turned away from the others and looked around for something to hang his shirt over. "Hey Nerimon, can I get a little blow dry?" he asked as he threw the dripping shirt over a tree branch. The Digimon obliged, nearly catching his shirt on fire. "Watch it!" Alex said, grabbing his shirt and looking at the bottom which was slightly singed.

"Sorry. . . ." Nerimon said apologetically.

"It's not your fault," Alex said, putting the still warm shirt back on. "It's nice and warm," he added with a smile to make sure Nerimon knew he wasn't upset. "Let's go to bed." They walked toward the area they were sleeping in, Alex's shoes leaving wet tracks behind them.

"I could dry your shoes off. . . ." Nerimon began.

"They're fine," Alex replied quickly to the laughter from the others as they set up their beds.

* * *

Erica looked around slowly. She was standing on the edge of a very large room covered in gold and beautiful paintings of angels and clouds. She turned and heard a strange whooshing, looking down and finding she was wearing a long, very expensive looking blue dress. The lights made everything glow, even the dress, and she smiled at the walls. As she watched the paintings seemed to be moving. . . . As she looked around she realized she was the only person in the room.

"Excuse me. . . ."

She turned and saw Alex standing at the top of a staircase, his hands holding the collar of the tuxedo he was wearing. She stared at him for a moment as he walked down the stairs. What the heck is going on. . . ? she thought as he reached the bottom of the staircase.

Alex took her hand, kissing the back of it as he bowed in front of her. "May I have this dance?" he asked, waving a hand out toward the middle of the dance floor.

After a moment Erica nodded, turning slightly red as he held her hand and led her out to the dance floor. She heard music as they went, glancing around to try and find the source. When she couldn't, she turned back to him and they started to dance.

After a few spins and twirls she locked eyes with him and they both started to lean in for a kiss. . . .

Erica opened her eyes as she felt her lips on something and came, very literally, face to face with a Sukamon. "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!"

* * *

Duodramon lifted his head and blinked in the direction of the sound, back to his smaller size. He had been about to take a nap. He stared in the direction of the sound for a moment and licked his lips. "Ah. A midnight snack!" He stood quickly and raced off in the direction of the scream, peaking through the branches of a bush at the fire in the middle of the Digidestined camp. "Aw," he whispered dejectedly, "It's just those stupid Digidestined. . . ." He paused as a thought crossed his mind, a smile appearing on his face. "As long as I'm here. . . ."

* * *

Erica shoved Sukamon away and spit a mouthful of saliva out. "OH GROSS!" she said loudly as she wiped her lips.

Sukamon's face was bright red as he batted his eyes. "Would you possibly be free for a date?" he asked innocently.

"Me too!" Chuumon inserted, smiling at her.

"Heck no!" she said loudly, standing up and wiping her mouth off again. "Ugh, disgusting! Get away from me!"

The two Digimon hopped away and glanced over their shoulders at her, shrugging. "Oh well, her loss," Chuumon said as they continued on their way.

Erica realized how loud she had been screaming when she heard the roar of laughter from the others who had been watching her. "That was great!" Samee said between giggles.

"Very nice!" Lexxy said with a laugh as the Digimon tried, and failed, to hide their laughter.

* * *

Sukamon looked around as he and Chuumon made their way across a clearing. "I don't like this Chuumon. . . ." he said. "It's too quiet. . . ."

"Actually, it's perfect," a voice said as a pair of eyes loomed out of the darkness around them, catching them both by surprise.

"AHHHH!" Sukamon screamed as he and Chuumon dove away from Duodramon. "RUN!" He managed to escape the first grab and was almost half way across the clearing when he felt something hit his back and he fell. He never got up.

Duodramon picked a small piece of something from between his teeth and burped. "That last one didn't taste so good," he muttered, patting his stomach. "But a filling meal nonetheless."

He headed back toward the camp, watching as the Digidestined settled back down to sleep. He smiled as he watched them fall asleep one at a time, plotting. "This should be fun," he said quietly.

Foximon lifted her head and raised an ear, pointing it toward the bushes on one side of them. "S'up Foxi?" Jenn asked sleepily, looking around as she heard her Digimon stirring.

"Nothing. . . ." Foximon replied after a moment's thought, lowering her head again. "Must have been those two Digimon. . . ."

Jenn grinned at the thought as she lay back down as well, closing her eyes and falling asleep.

* * *

Foximon threw open her eyes as she felt something grab her and cover her mouth, pulling her away from Jenn with almost no effort. She struggled but found that she couldn't escape the grasp.

"Calm down, I'm just having a bit of fun," Duodramon said, wrapping a gag around her mouth and tying it behind her head. He picked up a vine to tie her paws together, which he had been using to bind several of the other Digimon that were now staring at her. He looked at them and felt a stream of drool coming from the corners of his mouth. "It's too bad I can't eat you too," he said quietly, smiling a crooked smile. "Now, you stay here like good little Digimon and let me have my fun."

As he walked silently toward the humans the Digimon squirmed around, trying desperately to get free.

* * *

Duodramon grinned as he reached out toward Jenn, grabbing her roughly by the ankles and lifting her straight up until her ponytail was the only thing touching the ground. "BOO!"

Jenn screamed at the top of her lungs at this rude awakening. As soon as she realized what was happening she began to struggle. "SOMEBODY HELP ME!" she yelled, trying to wake the others who had begun to stir.

"What's going on!?" Emily said as she sat up, realizing that she was alone. "Huntermon?"

"Where's Nerimon!?" Alex asked as he woke up and looked around, turning on Duodramon angrily. "Where are our Digimon!?"

Duodramon dropped Jenn roughly to the ground and turned to face the others. "Well," he said slowly. "I ate them."

"Yeah right!" Skye said loudly, "Where are they!?"

Duodramon opened his mouth to answer and let out a disgusting belch that reeked of fresh meat. "Oh. . . ." He covered his mouth to hide the grin that was forming. "I'm sorry, where are my manners? Excuse me."

Skye, who had been almost in his face before, stared in shock, taking a few steps back and sitting on the ground. "Magimon. . . ." she said quietly. "You ATE Magimon. . . ."

"That's it!" Tania yelled, throwing herself at the Digimon and hitting him in the back. "HOW COULD YOU!?" she hollered as she pounded her fists on him, pulling out wads of hair.

The Digimon threw her off him with a quick twitch, sending her flying. "Now that was rude," he said as he watched her shake her head and stand back up.

"Shut up!" Alex said, picking up a stick and leading the charge on the Digimon.

"Oh please," The much larger Digimon said with a laugh. "You're not even worth my time."

* * *

Huntermon and Jaymon took deep breaths as they managed to chew through their gags. "Ememuph!" Foximon said as Huntermon pulled her gag off from behind.

"What?" she asked, struggling as much as she could to loosen the vines.

"Help!" Foximon repeated as she spit out the gag, squirming against the vines. "So tired. . . ." she said quietly, her ears perking up at the sound of a distant scream. "Jenn!" She squirmed faster, the other Digimon followed suite.

* * *

Duodramon lifted Erica off her feet as she tried to get up, a cut on her cheek bleeding onto the ground as she swung up into the air. "Look at you, you're all pathetic!"

Alex found his way to his feet. Seeing Erica, he found himself running toward the Digimon. He jumped onto Duodramon's back and grabbed handfuls of his mane, pulling and tearing out several chunks.

"AHHHHHH!" The Digimon bucked wildly, throwing himself into the air again and again in an attempt to dislodge the human. Suddenly Alex flew off of his back, slamming loudly into a nearby rock and crumpling into a pile at the base.

"Alex!" Erica called, trying to run to him.

"No you don't!" Duodramon said loudly, blocking her way and trapping her between a rock and himself. "I'm angry now!" He lowered himself into a crouch and prepared to throw himself at the human.

Erica screamed as the digivice she carried surrounded her in bright white light.

* * *

Cheekomon froze in her bonds and felt something happening as a bright white light illuminated the trees around her. "Cheekomon digivolve to . . . Cheetormon!" The Champion flexed her muscles and the ropes snapped.

"Thanks!" the other Digimon said as she slashed the vines that bound them, jumping into the sky and disappearing into the dark in the direction of the camp.

* * *

Erica opened her eyes when the Digimon didn't hit her, smiling widely as Cheetormon threw Duodramon away with a shoulder, the sound of her crashing threw the woods just catching up as she hit the Digimon, sending him flying several feet back. "Cheetormon!" Erica cried happily as she saw the Digimon. Cheetormon winked at her before she followed Duodramon, slashing into his flesh with her claws, leaving large gouges in his skin, some even showing bone.

The other Digimon bounded through the trees and stopped between their respective Digidestined and their enemy. "Here goes nothing," Foximon said. "Let's help guys!"

The other Digimon followed suite, the group of Champions jumping the Digimon and sinking teeth, talons, and claws into the adversary.

"They can't keep going like this!" Lexxy yelled as Skylamon and Sartomon fell to the ground, de-digivolving as they hit the dirt.

"Come on, Cheetormon. . . ." Erica said, watching with wide eyes as Duodramon pinned the tired Champion down, her breathing labored as she struggled to get free.

"You know," Duodramon said, leaning down to speak to Cheetormon only. "You're kind of cute." He grinned evilly, about to destroy her.

"CHEETORMON!" Erica screamed, falling to her knees as her digivice went off again, the crest she carried glowing brightly.

"Bite me," Cheetormon said as she disappeared in a flash of white light. "Cheetormon digivolve to. . . ." Her hair grew shorter and darker, her vest tattered and a black bandana appeared around her left bicep. "WereCheetormon!"

Duodramon's smile turned to a frown as he looked at her. "I take that back. . . ."

WereCheetormon grinned. "I might not be as pretty, but I'll still kick your-" The word was drowned out by the sound of the kick she had just landed that threw Duodramon from on top of her.

"Guys. . . ." Yazumon began, staring at the Ultimate creature as it tore into Duodramon with its claws.

"Run!" Foximon said shortly to Jenn, who took her advice and led the others away.

"I hope this isn't like Skullgreymon. . . ." Kritsina said as they hid behind the nearby trees that Cheetormon hadn't destroyed on her arrival. "They can't stop her if it is. Look at them." The Digimon, half of them in their Rookie forms, still stood between the evil Digimon and their partners.

"ALEX!" Nerimon said loudly, shaking his partner roughly in an attempt to wake him up.

"Huh?" Alex said as he continued to bob up and down. "Ah, my head. . . ." He opened his eyes and saw Erica watching her beast-like Digimon tearing into Duodramon as if he were a rag doll. "What is that thing? Erica?" He jumped to his feet, Nerimon stumbling backward as he rose. "ERICA! LOOK OUT!" He grabbed her as he raced past, throwing her over his shoulder and running away from the battle toward the others.

"No, it's ok-" she started. Then again, this world was different then their stories. Just because the WereCheetormon she had made wouldn't hurt her didn't mean this one wouldn't. "AH!" Erica said as Alex stumbled a few steps from the trees, scrambling into the cover and dragging her along.

"AHHHHHHHHH!" Duodramon screamed out, throwing himself against the animalistic Digimon and forcing her back as he ran into the woods, a small trail of blood following behind him.

WereCheetormon watched the spot he had disappeared into with a confused look, her head tilted to the side. After a moment she turned toward Erica who had come out from behind the trees. "WereCheetormon?" she said quietly, not sure what to expect.

WereCheetormon smiled widely and picked Erica up, licking her several times while the girl laughed.

"Thanks, Cheemon," Erica said after WereCheetormon had de-digivolved. "You really saved our butts."

"Of course!" Cheemon responded with a smile as the girl hugged her.

"I'm so glad you didn't get eaten," she said, giving the Digimon another squeeze before she let her go.

"Me too," the others responded.

* * *

The rest of the group discussed what to do as Erica walked over to sit next to Alex, who was still holding the back of his head. "Thanks," she said quietly.

"No prob. . . ." He paused as she gave him a quick kiss on the cheek, turning and walking back to the group.

"Wow. . . ." Alex said quietly, staring off into space.

"Alex! THEY'RE LEAVING!" Nerimon called as Alex snapped out of his half daze.

"Guys! WAIT UP!" he called, chasing after them.