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Apparently, Haley had said something really funny, because for the first time, Rick seemed to be genuinely enjoying himself. Well, that was a small improvement, she thought.
"Well, seems that at least I can tell funny stuff. Aren't you fortunate of having my company." Of course, that comment was meant as a joke rather than a show of ego, just to add a little bit to the fun.
Even thought it wasn't fun to everyone, apparently. Aegiomon seemed to not to be okay with what Rick had just said, and instead of being laughing like she expected. Instead, he exited the place, going who knows where. So, a big ego that was just as fragile, huh? What an interesting individual that digimon was.
"What a brittle ego, huh?" She remarked, almost to herself rather than as a question. "I can't believe that someone who played the tough guy role got so easily offended... but whatever. He kinda had it coming his way for being mostly a jerk, don't you think?"
That question was probably too direct, but at the moment, Haley didn't mind.
"So... what are you going to do about Aegiomon? Are you going to eventually search for him again, or just wait until he returns? Both seem to be equally likely to succeed."
Rick definitely didn't feel like chasing after Aegiomon. Haley was right, you know? The faun was being a total jerk this whole time, and one little poke made him explode.
"I don't know if I'm even going to try and meet up with him, honestly. After that little episode..."
Ricky trailed off as a particularly painful synapses fired and a memory bubbled to the surface of his mind. He was back in the States, fist bleeding and blood boiling after a rather heated moment before. One of his classmates had made fun of Rick's family, talking about their poor situation and the 'rumours' that they were on drugs (Rick had absolutely no idea how that had got spread around, but it did). One second, he was sitting across from Matthew Lode, and the next Rick was flying across the desk and wailing into him, doing more damage to his hands than he probably did to Matt. He remembered the tears streaming and how cold they were against his hot face, like they would evaporate into nothing if he were just one degree more angry. He also remembered being in the office, the nurse recounting this (of many an) 'episode', as he or any other medical official Rick had encountered would put it.
And he was just going to disregard Aegiomon, after having experienced that kind of humiliation and shame.
Rick was disgusted with himself. Quickly throwing some Bits down (he guessed that it was enough, but he honestly wasn't sure), he rushed out of the restaurant. He broke through the doorway and his eyes were stung by sunlight, but they worked to his demands anyway. Adrenaline began to pump into his body as the stormclouds of worry that had formed before began to swell, ready to burst at any moment. It's not like he really even was pleasured with Aegiomon's company, but more upset at himself for not getting a chance to understand the Digimon. He couldn't let something like that slip by him, because honestly, Haley was right. He was given this rare chance, and it was dumb for him to waste it in some safe city when there was a world of adventure right outside of his doorstep. Rick wanted to LIVE, damnit!
He heard Aegiomon's cry off to the right, seemingly still in the square, just obstructed by the jutting buildings and their irregular shapes. He wasn't sure how he knew it was Aegiomon, but he knew. Ricky ran as fast as his pudgy form would take him. He arrived to find that his assumption was correct.
Aegiomon was squared off to a large, knight-looking digimon, and around him was...
The stormclouds burst, and rain fell in the form of tears.
Aegiomon was surrounded by the remnants of code, like something had been deleted moments before. Judging by the gaping hole in Aegiomon's left side, the Digimon had lost an arm and part of his torso.
"For disturbing the peace, Aegiomon, you are sentenced to death. I, Knightmon, have served as your arbiter, and for resisting arrest, I shall be your executioner!"
Knightmon lifted the gargantuan weapon above his head, ready to bring it downwards. Rick was so doped up on adrenaline, time slowed down as the world went black-and-white.
Aegiomon's breaths were really labored, and it didn't look like he had the energy to move. Rick was so afraid. He needed to call out to Haley, or someone else that could help. Maybe reason with the digimon. He needed to find someone-
His legs began to move on their own. When he realized, he couldn't even stop them. His body was under the control of someone else, not Rick (at least, that's what it felt like). He watched himself go faster than he ever had before, catching Aegiomon by surprise when Rick essentially clotheslined-then-grabbed him. A second later. the sword hit the concrete, crushing it to dust. The swing was so powerful that it emitted a shockwave that almost knocked Rick off of his feet, but he didn't break stride. Although he was kind of slow, his upper body strength was actually kind of impressive. He had lifted Aegiomon's light body with ease and ran away.
"What am I doing?? Why can't I stop moving?" Rick half-said, half-shouted this as he continued to run, getting a small head-start as Knightmon dug his sword out from under the Earth. Soon, the alarms would sound, and it would be all over. He needed to get to the ferry. He ran past the Italian restaurant they were just eating at, though he had been so focused on Aegiomon that Rick had completely forgotten about Haley.
Aegiomon's voice broke his concentration. "You're moving because you've got the stones of a hero..." For once, Aegiomon sounded a little awestruck. It didn't shut him up, though, much to Rick's dismay. "Now LET ME DOWN, I can run you bastard!"
Gio kicked free and began to run alongside Rick, who was already slowing down. The chubby teenager had never been much of a long distance runner, and he hadn't exactly been keeping to his wrestling regimen since coming to the digital world. Still, he kept going. Aegiomon's paced matched Rick's, even though he could probably run much faster.
Rick prayed they would make it in time, before Knightmon caught up to him. Already he could hear the iron-clad behemoth's obnoxious clanking and the bass-filled tremors of the ground. They kept running, both totally unsure how far or exactly where the ferry was. They dipped into a nearby alley to take a breather, and to get monster of their tails.
The small enclave was filled with heavy breathing.
Haley had to wonder when, and why suddenly everything went to hell. One moment after after another, she observed how Rick abandoned the Restaurant, how he ran towards the Aegiomon, who now seemed to be critically injured by a Knightmon, and how the pair began to run as fast as they could, trying to run away from that hulking, metal-clad knight.
What she could do about it? She was defenseless, unlike Rick who at least had an unruly Aegiomon at his back; she had nothing, just three eggs that didn't look like they were ready to hatch. But... she wanted to help them in some way. In any way.
Quick on her feet, she tried to follow after the pair, making sure of not being too suspicious about or as a fast track to them; it'd be hard, but she guessed that the pair's greatest chance of surviving was behind them not being found again or escaping this place before they were found.
She had to think about something, but the imminent danger she could face, coupled with the sense of impending dread that she felt about this. She just hoped they'd be able to pull this out unscathed... or, mostly unscathed, at least.
They didn't talk during the short reprieve; they were too focused on saving their strength. An unspoken understanding radiated in the stuffy atmosphere of the alley. They wouldn't stop again until they were safe; they simply didn't have enough time. Once the Law was on you in Luminas City, it's rest was found at your eternal peace.
After a few moments, they started again. After they exited the crevice, Rick made eye contact with Haley. Had she been following them? He shot her a panicked look, but gave no words. If she followed him further, that was her prerogative (but why she would was lost to Rick).
This time, Rick was more sure about the location of the ferry. Him and Aegiomon ran relentlessly, weaving through the backroads of the city for what felt like an eternity under the weight of time and it's pressures.
Eventually, though, there was revelation.
The ferry was as dull and lifeless as it always was - a few trips a day, at most. Piximon sat lazily by the vessel, reading a paperback book of what appeared to be horror-fiction. The out-of-breath duo ran towards his workspace, Rick placing down the rest of his Bits (just a little more or less than what the ferry cost). The small fairy digimon picked it up and began what appeared to be deep thought, as if weighing the bag to assure it's legitimacy. Shrugging, he pulled a lever that opened up the ferry's chassey, and they scrambled inside. Rick had his hands on his knees while he was breathing heavily, so he wondered if Haley followed.
There would be time enough for her to enter, but no more. The ferry doors would close and those aboard would descend onto the Hell of the Digital World.
They seemed to be escaping! That was good. Haley's eyes crossed with Rick's and right afterwards, she dashed just behind them, trying to close the distance between her and the pair as fast as she could. No time to lose, unless they felt to try their luck working as living sharpening stones for that digimon's swords.
Well, the journey was quite fast, or so the girl thought, at least. Soon enough, she finally found herself catching up with the duo inside the ferry's chasey. Well, after paying the pixiemon hurriedly, that is. How such a small digimon could glare so sternly escaped the redhead, but that wasn't the moment for questions like those.
"Phew. That was really close." Haley sighed with relief as her body slumped into the nearest surface she found, searching for support; she felt so tired right now. "Gotta admit that you got a lot more fight inside you that I had believed you had. That was really bold on your part. Or stupid, depending on who sees it."
A tiny giggle erupted from her mouth between exhausted breaths.
"So, what're you gonna do now? It seems that living in this place won't be a thing anymore. At least for you."