Chapter 11: The Last Evolution
From the other side of the light, an Eosmon in a new form had appeared.
It was so big that its two wings were touching the ground.
It was so huge that even Omegamon had to look up at it. Its limbs were long and thin, and it had sharp, pointed claws, and yet its gold armor was beautiful, causing it to resemble something like a human.
Yamato, staring at Eosmon with wide eyes, looked at the crystal on Eosmon’s chest, and yelled.
“Did it evolve? No…Menoa’s been absorbed into Eosmon!”
They could see Menoa within the crystal on its chest. Her eyes were closed, as if she were sleeping.
While Taichi was anxiously looking up, a light shone from Eosmon’s forehead.
By the time he’d noticed the light, Eosmon had already shot a beam at them.
The beam barely missed Omegamon, and headed for Taichi and Yamato.
It was so powerful that it instantly melted the crystal trolley, and blew up a huge portion of the ground under them.
When Omegamon turned to see if the two of them were safe, he exposed his back to Eosmon for a moment.
During that moment, Eosmon took no time in aiming at him.
The crystal glowed, and by the time Omegamon realized that it was firing a beam, it was already in front of him.
The resulting explosion shook the island, knocking Taichi over.
Slowly getting himself back up, he wiped his forehead, which was throbbing with pain, with the back of his hand.
Once he’d pulled down his hand, he saw red blood plastered on it.
Taichi was filled with fear as he looked around.
“…Yeah, I’m okay!”
Yamato, who had been pulled elsewhere, stood up, and looked for their partners in the smoke.
“What about Omegamon?”
Weaving through the air filled with cloud-like smoke, Omegamon came flying out with a bang!
Having descended, Omegamon glided on the ground like he was ice skating, barely grazing it, and headed towards Eosmon.
Omegamon increased his speed, planning to remove himself from Eosmon’s line of sight.
He moved behind Eosmon, who stood completely still, at a speed that the eye couldn’t follow.
“We can do this!”
Having left Eosmon’s field of vision, he readied his Grey Sword.
He continued to accelerate, and flew in front of Eosmon’s face. He aimed for the crystal, and pushed out his sword…
But the Grey Sword was stopped by a shield that Eosmon had put out.
Omegamon tried to follow up by preparing the Garuru Cannon, and fired a close-range shot.
The fumes from the explosion spread around, and once it cleared, Eosmon emerged without a single scratch.
Eosmon fired another beam from its forehead.
Omegamon was hit directly in the right shoulder. The beam smashed through his armor and went straight into the island’s ground, with so much force that flames and dirt shot up from it.
Eosmon flew higher into the air in order to follow Omegamon, firing a dozen or so beams at him in succession.
As if each beam had its own will, they chased after the increasingly desperate Omegamon.
Omegamon managed to deflect two of the beams with his sword…but three more of them headed for him from behind.
Above Taichi and Yamato’s heads, Omegamon was engulfed in flames.
The two of them called out to the falling Omegamon…but he did not get up.
When the smoke around where Omegamon had fallen cleared up, on the ground were the wounded Agumon and Gabumon.
They hadn’t been able to take Eosmon’s attack, and their fusion had split apart.
Taichi called out to his partner.
But then, someone grabbed onto his left arm. It was the younger Hikari, who was clutching his arm tightly. Her eyes were glowing with an ominous red.
Right after that, his right arm was also grabbed by none other than the younger Koushirou, looking at Taichi with red eyes.
Taichi looked around for Yamato, hoping he could help him.
“Let me go! Takeru! Jou, Mimi, stop it!”
But Yamato was also having his arms pulled back by the younger versions of their friends, preventing him from moving.
“Let me go, Hikari! You too, Koushirou! I have to save Agumon and the others!”
Taichi desperately tried to appeal to them, but the younger Hikari and Koushirou made no response except to hold Taichi back.
“Takeru, you have to let me go! I’m gonna save you guys, I promise!”
But Yamato’s voice wouldn’t reach the friends he currently knew.
Taichi looked straight at the children with red eyes, and said, firmly, “Hikari, you should understand, right? You know you can’t just hide away in a world of your own memories!”
“We have to keep going forward…M-Mgh!”
Yamato’s voice was suddenly cut off. Patamon had flown into his face, as if to muffle his words.
Yamato could no longer stand, and fell over on his back.
Tentomon had tackled Taichi straight in the stomach.
Pushed back into the ground, Taichi looked around. The kids and their Digimon were all glaring at him with ominous eyes.
As Taichi grit his teeth, all of the Digimon attacked him at once.
Taichi could not run from the crowd of Digimon pinning him down. Taichi and Yamato were overwhelmed by a mob, while the children simply listlessly looked on.
From up in the air, Eosmon stared down at them.
The Eosmon that had been dispatched all over the Real World brought in more “Chosen Children” and their Digimon partners.
One by one, the consciousness of the children and their Digimon were carried towards more floating islands out of crystal. Once they arrived, each “island of memory” turned into a place with their memories.
Neverland began to spread out once more, as Eosmon looked on.
Agumon and Gabumon were still thoroughly beaten up.
Taichi and Yamato still couldn’t budge.
There was no one left who could stand up against Eosmon…
A voice rang out.
Eosmon looked back at the central island.
Taichi reached his hand out from the pile of Digimon. Even though he couldn’t see anything, he had no fear, and pushed out his arm.
“We…have to keep going forward…”
He put all of his strength into resisting the Digimon pinning him down. But the Digimon only struggled harder to prevent Taichi from advancing.
But Taichi had already made up his mind to keep going forward.
Tachi let out a “gh!”, and, once again, pushed aside the Digimon.
“We have to face the future!”
Taichi’s hand reached Hikari.
He grabbed the whistle Hikari had on her neck.
Taichi opened his mouth wide, and took a deep breath.
The sound of the whistle rang through the Digital World, long and firm.
In a memory from a long, long time ago, when Taichi was still in grade school, Taichi had connected his heart with a Digimon for the first time. To protect his sister, and to protect his town, he’d blown that whistle.
That whistle was the sound of his beginnings, the exact reason why Taichi would come to live alongside Digimon.
Agumon, who had fallen on the ground, opened his eyes upon hearing the sound of the whistle.
Gabumon also picked himself up and looked for his partner.
And their friends, who hadn’t been responding to them at all up to that point, started to move…little by little.
Taichi finally reached his limit in blowing the whistle, and was left coughing.
Just then, a gentle voice called out to Taichi.
Taichi jerked his head upwards.
His friends had awoken and returned to their usual selves, and were smiling cheerfully at Taichi.
The sound of Taichi’s whistle had leapt through time and stirred the hearts of his friends.
As Taichi looked around, his friends’ Digimon partners had also returned to their senses.
“See, this is how we are!”
Free from the Digimon’s grasp, Yamato smiled lightly.
“Taichi-san, where’s Eosmon…?”
Hearing Koushirou, Taichi got up and turned around.
Up in the sky, Eosmon, still with Menoa trapped inside her, was staring right back at Taichi and his friends. Around it, the Eosmon that had returned to the Digital World were also standing in their way.
Taichi looked up sharply at Eosmon, and said, in a firm voice, “Guys! Let’s fight it together!”
Believing in Taichi’s words, his friends all got up, one after another.
“Let’s go, Gomamon! We’re gonna protect everyone!”
“Yeah! I got it, Jou!”
Jou was clenching his fist, and at his feet was Gomamon, looking very proud of himself.
“Palmon! We’re going in, too!”
“Yes! I’ll get to break out the prickle for once, after all this time!”
Palmon nodded at Mimi’s unyielding spirit, and gave her a high-five.
“Let’s go, Patamon. Let’s help out Yamato and the others!”
“I’ll do my best, Takeru!”
Patamon jumped onto Takeru’s head, and everyone looked up at Eosmon together.
“Let’s go, Tailmon.”
“Don’t let your guard down, Hikari.”
Hikari and Tailmon had few words for each other, but they were staring straight at their opponent.
“So that’s Eosmon’s evolved form…”
“Koushirou-han, I’m thinkin’ this ain’t the time to be doin’ analysis.”
Tentomon scolded Koushirou, who had been deep in thought with a hand to his mouth.
“Yes, you’re right. Let’s go, Tentomon.”
Taichi’s friends all set off to face Eosmon.
Taichi had yet another friend who felt the same way as them.
Sora was sitting in her room, looking out the window. Although she had decided not to participate in the fighting, her feelings were still the same as theirs.
Even though she was not with them, even though she couldn’t be with them, Sora was fighting alongside her friends.
“I…believe in all of you!”
Jou and Mimi’s partners started off heading the front lines.
Jou was calling out to a four-legged Digimon clothed in white fur. Ikkakumon, who had evolved from Gomamon, was walking along the ground as it shook.
“Bring it down, Togemon!”
Mimi was cheering on a cactus Digimon wearing boxing gloves. Togemon, who had evolved from Palmon, jumped high in the air.
Ikkakumon raised his head, and fired the horn on his head.
At the same time, Togemon, spinning round and round at a rapid speed, scattered thorns from her body.
“Prickle-Prickle Bang Bang!”
But neither the exploding horn nor the sharp thorns could break Eosmon’s shield.
Yet none of that was enough to make any of their friends give up. Angemon and Angewomon, Kabuterimon, and all of the others were there too, and were also fighting against Eosmon.
Taichi and Yamato continued to look on as their friends fought.
In their hands were their Digivices. The rings of light were still disappearing even now.
The time of their separation would come for them very, very soon.
“Agumon. I want to save everyone.”
Agumon was beaten up, but his words to Taichi were firm.
“I know, Taichi.”
Agumon put his own hand over Taichi’s, as it clutched onto the Digivice.
Yamato also gazed firmly at the wounded Gabumon next to him.
“Gabumon…Even if this ends up being our last, please fight with me.”
“Let’s go, Yamato.”
Gabumon took Yamato’s hand as well.
The voices of Taichi and Agumon, and Yamato and Gabumon, all rang out as one.
“…our last evolution!”
Their two Digivices were dyed in gold, dazzling and bright.
The light was so strong that it forced them to open their hands, and the shining Digivices cracked loudly. But the light did not settle down, and instead shot into the sky as a single beam of light.
The two lines rapidly shot into the sky, and disappeared.
A huge flower opened in the sky, as if it were covering all of Neverland. Within the raining petals of light, Taichi and Agumon, along with Yamato and Gabumon, were floating lightly.
As they floated through the sky, Taichi and Yamato were holding hands with their partners. They were looking straight into each other’s eyes, and were brought into the shining flower.
The light that had swallowed the four of them up gradually began to disappear.
From there, two large silhouettes emerged.
The first was fully covered in a color as orange as burning flames.
The other had a body as deep blue as the sea, with long fur that fluttered.
The two of them had bodies similar to that of humans, and on each of their shoulders stood Taichi and Yamato.
“This is…a new evolution…!”
Taichi and Yamato’s determination had achieved Agumon and Gabumon’s final evolution. They had an aura of divinity that entranced even all of their friends.
The unevolved Eosmon around them tried to swarm on the two of them.
Gabumon fired a number of missiles from his back.
Gohhhhh…! They chased after and struck down the flying Eosmon, knocking them down, one after another.
Agumon held out both of his arms towards the remaining Eosmon. After doing so, he fired pure red beams from the backs of his hands.
The laser beams overtook the Eosmon, and they were gone in an instant.
The Eosmon that had proven to be such a challenge for Omegamon were taken down in a single moment.
This was the power of the final evolution that Agumon and Gabumon had accomplished.
The only Eosmon left in Neverland was the giant one with Menoa in it.
Eosmon faced the two of them, and slowly spread its arms.
Before Taichi had even finished speaking, Agumon and Gabumon lunged at Eosmon.
Within only seconds, a shield had appeared where Taichi and the others were.
Agumon and Gabumon appeared right in front of Eosmon’s face, as if they had appeared there in only a single instant. Eosmon had deflected all of their attacks thus far, but they lifted their arms.
Their punches hit Eosmon directly, and Eosmon started to fall on its back towards the central island of Neverland.
Not letting up on their attacks, Agumon fired his laser beams and Gabumon the projectiles from his arms.
The beams and the projectiles rained down on Eosmon.
Eosmon, now caught completely off guard, was starting to become desperate as it fell, and was starting to fire off beams and set up shields wildly.
The beams and the shields started to destroy the crystal in Neverland. Seeing that it was now attacking indiscriminately, Taichi and Yamato realized that this was the perfect chance.
“Let’s go, Yamato!”
Agumon and Gabumon dove down towards Eosmon, their speed pressing down on it as weight, and they swung their fists downward at it.
Eosmon, feeling the impact of their attacks, started flailing its long arms around and setting up shields. It set up many of these around it, turning it completely into a defense mechanism.
Taichi and Yamato yelled out their battle cry together as Agumon and Gabumon punched through the shields with all of their might.
Their two fists snapped through layers and layers of shields…! and shattered them.
That force had even reached the crystal ground. A crack appeared through the island, and finally…
Neverland’s largest central island broke into pieces.
The crystals were scattered on one side, and their friends, who had lost their foothold, were being held up by their Digimon.
After checking to see that his friends were safe, Taichi stared, wide-eyed, at the crystals around him.
“There are images in the crystals…?”
Taichi and his friends could see images playing on the floating crystals around them, like they were being projected on them.
“Hahaha! We’ll always be together, Morphomon!“
“Hey, Morphomon, everyone’s avoiding me.”
“I can’t wait to be an adult…If I were, people wouldn’t look at me so weird, right?”
All of the images had a girl with a peculiarly sharp look in her eyes, and a butterfly-like Digimon with wings.
Quietly looking at the images on the crystals, Yamato muttered, “These are…Menoa’s memories…”
All of the children had their very own “island of memory”, made just for them.
Menoa was no exception.
The central island was the personal “island of memory” for Neverland’s own creator, Menoa.
“Morphomon, I’ve made up my mind! I’m going to New York!”
“I’m gonna live out the rest of my life with my own abilities!”
“I’ll be fine on my own from here…”
Through each memory, Menoa was becoming more and more of an adult.
And then, Agumon spoke a single sentence.
“I can hear her voice.”
Gabumon gave a small nod.
“She wants someone to help her…!”
Finally, even Taichi and the others could hear Menoa’s voice.
“Why did you leave me?”
“You’re my best friend…”
Within the crystal, Menoa was crying.
There was one image that had always been playing in her head, with her fourteen-year-old self, smiling like she was about to burst and calling out to her partner.
“I did it! I’m gonna be skipping grades into college! I’m gonna get through life with my own abilities! And I’m gonna do the research I love and do something for the world!”
Waiting in front of the swing at her family’s home, where they’d always played together when Menoa was a child, was her beloved friend.
Lately, she’d been studying so much that they hadn’t been talking to each other at all, so she wanted Morphomon to lavish her with praise. She wanted her to say, “Menoa, you’re amazing!”
But Morphomon turned around and looked at her with a very lonely-looking face.
…Suddenly, Morphomon’s body started to turn into beads of light, and disappeared into the sky.
As Menoa fell into a panic, her Digivice fell out of her pocket. The ring of light floating above its screen blew away and vanished.
“Why is this happening? I don’t know anything about this!”
Menoa was still panicking, but Morphomon took her hand and squeezed it.
Morphomon’s mouth moved. But Menoa couldn’t hear her voice.
Menoa tried her best to listen, but after that, Morphomon had dissolved into beads of light, and disappeared into the sky.
There was nobody there at the swing anymore, and Menoa broke down wailing.
“Was this…because I made that choice?”
Within the crystal, Menoa had her face in both of her hands.
“Did Morphomon leave because I tried to become an adult? Then…what should I have done?”
She had decided on her own path.
She should have been happy about her own growth, but then Morphomon had suddenly parted from her.
No matter how much research she did, her partner would not return to her.
“I don’t understand anymore…”
Neither fate nor destiny could be changed.
Menoa was sinking into her own memories.
— A light pierced through Menoa’s field of vision.
“Menoa! We’re coming to save you now!”
Taichi’s voice reached Menoa at the same time a light appeared.
Agumon and Gabumon punched into the final shield.
As they stood on each of their partners’ shoulders, Yamato called out to Menoa.
“It wasn’t a mistake for you to make that choice!”
Taichi, wanting to get his own feelings through to her as well, put everything he had into his words.
“But whenever you do make a choice, then no matter what lies ahead of it…!”
Yamato picked up on Taichi’s words, and continued.
“We have to live with what lies ahead of what we’ve chosen!”
Hearing Yamato’s words, Menoa gasped.
The shield was starting to screech. Before long, they would reach Eosmon.
Leaning forward, Taichi tossed his words out at Menoa.
“It’s true that we may not be able to change our fate…but!”
Yamato took a deep breath, and shouted, “We can change our destiny!”1
Hearing their words, Menoa snapped her head upwards.
The final shield shattered into tiny pieces.
Taichi and Yamato flew towards Eosmon, who was now left completely defenseless.
“That’s why we won’t give up!”
The two of them slammed their Digivices onto the crystal on Eosmon’s chest. Their Digivices came into contact with the crystal, and in that moment —
Their vision was blinded by a pure white light that spread out all over Neverland.
Taichi and Yamato continued to hold out their hands.
So that they could reach Menoa within the crystal.
And Menoa, looking out at the light from within the crystal, could see a butterfly-shaped hairpin.
The hairpin started to change in shape, into the form of Eosmon, right after its birth.
The Eosmon continued to change…and took the form of Morphomon.
Morphomon took Menoa’s hand, and smiled gently at her.
Perhaps it was an illusion. But Menoa could hear Morphomon’s voice.
She could hear those last words that failed to reach her when they had parted.
“We’ll always be together.”
She could see Morphomon’s form layered on top of Eosmon.
Eosmon was smiling at Menoa, too.
I’m sorry. I’m sorry I didn’t realize.
You’ve been here with me this entire time, haven’t you?
Menoa’s tears were swallowed by the light, and disappeared.
- The original Japanese words for what’s translated as “fate” and “destiny” are “shukumei” (宿命) and “unmei” (運命). (I chose to have the translations here match up with the official translation of “To Sora” and onkei’s translation of the Dash X Bunko version, as I felt that such a plot-important concept should be handled with consistency when possible.) “Shukumei“, which Menoa is a believer in, involves one’s preordained fate determined prior to their birth, such as that from a previous life — something that is absolutely unchangeable, no matter what one does. Taichi and Yamato, on the other hand, are believers in “unmei“, referring to destiny determined after birth, which cannot always be predicted and can still be overturned by luck or effort — thus, they believe in the ability to change or subvert a supposedly inevitable future.