Dante's Little Apple Surprise

by Tatsurou

Chapter 50: Big Boss Battle

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Arius smirked as he stared up at where his magic held Lucia captive. "Kill me!" she demanded of him, making him smirk.

"That man and his pony are going to bring me the Arcanas," he gloated. "And you will live to-" He stopped talking as a loud revving filled the air. "What is-"

A motorcycle with side car burst in through the window, flattening Arius as it landed atop him. "We're here!" Applejack shouted happily. She then glanced around. "Uh...where's the big bad?"

Staring dumbly, Lucia glanced down to under the motorcycle.

Dante looked down at the undercarriage. "We...landed on him?" He turned to Applejack. "I told you we should have used the front door. Now we don't have a boss to fight!"

"Well how was I supposed ta know he'd be so squishy?" Applejack demanded. "He seemed a lot tougher when he was summoning demons! Yer the one who landed on him! I just said take the chopper through the window!"

As Dante and Applejack continued to argue about whose fault it was that Arius went squish, the villain they were discussing used his magic to warp out from under the motorcycle, filch the Arcana, and blast the pair - and Lucia - out of the tower. In reaction to the blast, Dante jerked the chopper up to take the majority of the blast for them, while Applejack summoned Griffon to carry them a safe distance away to plan the next assault. Neither stopped arguing the entire way, leaving Lucia somewhat stupefied.

"W...what is with you two?" Lucia demanded. "Why would you risk everything to save me?"

"Ya mean why would we go so far to save someone from being destroyed by the maker they were defying?" Applejack asked, causing Lucia to gasp. "Yeah, not that big a surprise. I read the artificial Devil Trigger in your aura, and we keep finding Devil Trigger related runes in Arius' facilities, and he's the one tryin ta raise a demon. Ain't the first time that's been done."

"The last two times we encountered that were my resurrected brother and sister-in-law, respectively," Dante added.

Lucia stared back and forth between the pair of them as they turned to head back towards the tower. "Is this how Sparda saved us? By breaking everyone's brains with illogical behavior?"

"Quite possibly," Applejack joked.

As Arius' ritual was beginning and the sun was being eclipsed, the human world and demon world were slowly blurring together on the island. Thankfully, the strength of the occult energies of the island kept the effect from spreading beyond it at this point, but it was only a matter of time before that failed. As such, Dante and Applejack acted to speed things up so they could get into the demon world to fight the demon Arius was summoning before the occult strength of the land failed.

Upon successfully opening the gate, however, they came under attack by Phantom. "I may have lost to you before!" he proclaimed. "But there are only two of you now, and-" His words, and his life, were cut off rather abruptly.

"Griffon!" Applejack complained. "We were gonna fight him!"

"But...but lava spiders taste so good!" the thunderbird whimpered. "And I haven't eaten since the demon helicopter!"

Groaning, Applejack unsummoned him. "Welp, so much for that."

"On the bright side, the portal's open," Dante pointed out.

On the other side of the portal, the pair climbed up the demonic tower to the sky, making their way towards the focus of the eldritch energies. Though monsters faced them at every turn, none were able to prove a real challenge.

"You know," Dante pointed out, "maybe it's time to retire."

"Why do ya say that?" Applejack asked as she casually bucked a demon out a window to plunge to its death, screaming in agonized terror.

"Without any challenge...demon hunting isn't fun anymore," Dante explained as he spun another demon over his head, trying something different to desperately spice things up.

"Know what ya mean," Applejack replied. "This ain't an adventure...it's a grind. We need somethin' new."

Dante paused, releasing the demon he was swinging and sending it flying out the window. "Did you just get the feeling of incredible foreboding? Or was that just me?"

Shrugging, Applejack led the way up.

As they approached the top of the tower, a reality distortion flung them into an arena with a large demon that appeared to be a large, shrunken head made of gold with too many eyes and mouths.

"The granddaughter of Sparda," the creature began.

"Wait!" Dante interrupted. "Since when did I get second billing?"

"Since I came of age?" Applejack suggested playfully.

Dante glowered. "...just kill it," he growled, making her giggle.

The creature attacked them with fire, ice, and lightning...all of which they deflected with their Devil Arms of the same element, amplifying the blast as it returned. The battle didn't last long.

Back in the demonic tower, they found themselves in an echo of Arius' office, where they'd rescued Lucia from. As a portal opened to take them further, they charged in.

Reaching the top of the tower, they saw the eclipse about to become total as Arius completed the ritual, drawing the energy from the four Arcana to open the gateway. He cackled madly. "Now, I'll absorb his power! I...will become an all powerful immortal!"

However, the ritual began to go wrong...because Dante had switched his double headed coin for the Medaglia, the coin shaped Arcana. "A false coin," he called out, flipping the Arcana in his hands, "for a false god."

As the coin was reclaimed, Dante and Applejack prepared to fight. "Showtime!" they proclaimed together.

Next Chapter: Final Destination Estimated time remaining: 12 Minutes
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