Lilithmon's Epic Chapter 21
Forest Surrounding Lachesis HQ
It felt like it had been ages since any of us had been back at Lachesis, and no matter how many times I walked through the forest surrounding the fort, it always seemed to take forever to find it. Maybe it was because all of the trees looked exactly the same, although I suspect it had something to do with the fact that Statuedramon kept on tripping over the trees’ roots.
“I see...so that’s how Garret died,” Irene said, somberly walking between Zelda and me. “I always knew he was…different than everyone else at Lachesis, but I never thought he would do something so horrible to MetalEtemon…” Zelda gently placed her hand on the younger girl’s shoulder.
“Personally, I’m just amazed he died in combat,” Statuedramon said. “I always figured he’d end up in a ditch somewhere and soaked in rum…Damn it, why’d we have to pick a forest fortress to live in?!”
“I have a feeling everyone else did, too,” Irene said, failing to notice that Statch had tripped once again. “…After those two large trees up ahead, we should reach the clearing where Lachesis is.”
“I’m glad you’re with us, Irene; I’d have gotten us lost if I were leading,” Statuedramon said. As we passed the trees, we did indeed find the clearing; however, what little grass there was in the clearing was all black, as if it had been burnt, as were a few of the surrounding trees.
“What the hell…what the hell happened here?!” Statuedramon yelled. As we approached our fort, Statch looked up, then dropped his shield; his face was angrier than I ever remembered it being. My heart sank when I saw what Statuedramon was yelling at; the fortress that served as Lachesis’s HQ — the place all members of Lachesis had called home — had been burned completely to the ground, leaving nothing but a large pile of charred rubble and debris.
“Who…did this?” Irene asked tearfully, looking away from the sight as Zelda pulled her into a hug.
“Who else would’ve done it?! It had to have been the knights!” Statuedramon said.
“It could have been Flamedramon,” I suggested. “He destroyed the knights’ armory by fire, remember?”
“No…it was the knights,” Statuedramon said through his teeth. “The knights think we were the ones who set their armory on fire; of course they would want to get revenge! Also, the knights are the only ones who know where this fort was; it was them, damn it!” Statch clenched his fists so tightly, his sharp claws dug into the palms of his hands and they began to bleed. “It…it had to have been them…” Statuedramon fell to his hands and knees, sobbing. “Right…?”
“No need to be sad; it’s not like any of us were killed when it happened,” a voice from above us said.
“SlashAngemon!” Statuedramon leapt to his feet and ran up to the Mega Digimon as he flew down behind us.
“Are you sure? Nobody was hurt or anything?” Zelda asked.
“Yeah, and everyone’s present and accounted for,” SlashAngemon said. “Well…Pheragas told us about what happened to Garret and MetalEtemon…”
“Pheragas made it back okay?” I asked.
“Well, he made it back, but he and BlackGaomon are both kind of beat up.” SlashAngemon turned and looked at the destroyed fortress, sighing. “Well, why don’t I take you all to our temporary HQ? You lot and Apollomon can exchange information.”
“Wait; what happened here?” I asked.
“It was just as you said, Thomas,” SlashAngemon said. “Flamedramon did it.”
“That bastard! I knew it had to have been him!” Statch yelled.
“Of course you did,” SlashAngemon shook his head. “Well, come on; everyone’s waiting for us.”
“This is where we’re staying?!” Statuedramon asked.
“True, it’s not much to look at, but this way, the knights won’t know where we are,” SlashAngemon said, opening the door of a small, worn-down, and rather old-looking brick house.
The door had windows on its upper half, but several of them were broken. “On the plus side, there is a basement, giving us a little more room. Also, from what we’ve been told, nobody’s lived here for a while, so we may not have to worry about paying rent or anything.” SlashAngemon led us inside to a small, dusty room with a wood plank floor. In the room was a small couch, along with two small wood tables surround by chairs.
“Welcome back,” Luna said, sitting at one of the tables next to Chrysania. “Pheragas and BlackGaomon are still in the basement with the others.”
“I see.” SlashAngemon sighed wearily, and then pointed toward a hallway with one of his arms. “The basement door is straight ahead; you should all speak with Apollomon now.” Zelda, Irene, Statuedramon, and I went in the direction SlashAngemon pointed, through the door he mentioned and down the stairs into the basement. Pheragas and BlackGaomon were lying on their backs, and both were covered in bandages and minor burns. Apollomon and Dianamon sat on the basement’s floor, looking up at us as we came in.
“Mission accomplished, I presume?” Apollomon asked wearily.
“Yeah, we got Ienzo to Paeonia Town; Saias and Lector should be there by now,” I said.
“Forgive me…” Pheragas said weakly.
“Don’t talk; you need to save your energy,” Dianamon said.
“It’s our fault…the fort was destroyed…” BlackGaomon said as he and Pheragas sat up with an effort.
“If ve ‘ad finished off Flamedramon vhen ve ‘ad de chance, ‘e vould not ‘ave followed us back to Lachesis,” Pheragas said.
“Nobody blames either of you for what happened, Pheragas, BlackGaomon,” Dianamon said. “We’re just glad the two of you are still alive after fighting a Digimon that could have easily killed me or SlashAngemon…or even Apollomon…”
“We also heard…about what happened to Garret and MetalEtemon,” Apollomon was looking down at the ground steadily.
“How much have you heard?” I asked.
“What do you mean?” Apollomon looked up at me.
“Apollomon, Garret murdered MetalEtemon,” I said. Apollomon and Dianamon stared at me. “That man that was with Saias and Lector, he was somehow able to convince Garret to murder MetalEtemon; he then gathered up his data and injected it into Garret’s blood!”
“…What?!” Apollomon stood up and walked over to me. “You…you must be joking! Garret might have been a lot of things, but he would never murder—”
“After he was injected with MetalEtemon’s data, he was given something called a ‘Bio Link Digivice’ that he used to turn himself into MetalEtemon.” After I spoke, there was silence for a few minutes.
“Garret…really did something like that?” Irene asked. I nodded.
“He thought he would be strong enough to fight Flamedramon, but he was killed in a single attack,” Statuedramon said.
“And you say that strange man that was with Saias and Lector was the one who did it?” Apollomon asked. “He turned Garret into a…a monster?!”
“That’s what Garret said, but for all we know, he could have been lying,” Zelda said.
“Yeah, Garret does tend to do that,” Statch said. “But one look into that old man’s eyes and I knew immediately that he was trouble.”
“Saias did say he was Ienzo’s replacement,” Apollomon mused. “It’s highly likely that Garret was telling the truth.” Apollomon sighed.
“What should we do, boss?” I asked.
“I’m not sure…we’ll have to stay here for a while; we can’t go back to where the fort used to be if Flamedramon knows where it is; not to mention, it’s been completely destroyed,” Apollomon said. “We’ll just have to stay here for a while…”