Hope in Despair (aka Hope gets some KFC)
Part 2 - Problems of the Heart and Soul
by Ashna

Thank you all for reviewing the first part!!! People like my stuff! Sniff *is so happy!* It took me a week to figure out what to put in the second chapter. Now there will be three! I wouldn't be surprised if I added a fourth. Sigh, so complicated. Sorry for the wait but this chapter was really hard to write. I'm just beginning as a writer it's hard!!!! Trying to write Daisuke as less then completely clueless but still ditzy took some doing! Now for you Takeru fans I'm sorry but this chapter focuses mostly on Daiken/Kensuke. There's not much you can do with him right now. What can I say but that he remains almost completely static for the chapter.

Wondering what happened to Sora and Yamato as a couple? How did Taichi get into all of this? That will not be explained here! Haha that will be for another time another fic. I'd love to dedicate this fic to two of my friends. Leth that's her saiyan slash name and Miyama who loves angst, lemon and Yaoi just as much as me! You guys are great keep the perversions coming! And Leth you know you're a good writer so stop dissing your stuff! Anyhoo enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~Part 2, Recovery~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Yama-koi it's going to be all right. He's gonna be fine." Taichi was saying rubbing Yamato's back as he retched uncontrollably.

They'd gotten to the ER in record time and had been told to clean up and wait. Yamato had been so worried about his brother he hadn't noticed the blood that was on him and Taichi.

They'd gone to the bathroom while they waited for his parents to show up but Yamato had broken down again at the sight of so much of his own brother's blood. He kept on seeing the image of Takeru sprawled across the kitchen floor lying in a growing puddle of red. It had been everywhere. In Takeru's blonde hair, soaked into his clothes, across the floor.

Now he was holding on to the ceramic bowel as the contents of his stomach emptied themselves. Taichi was still holding him making soothing sounds and brushing his hair away from his face. He'd never known the guy had such a gentle side but then Taichi always managed to surprise him.

He managed to stop after about ten minutes and sit up properly his stomach now too empty to bring up anymore. Taichi slowly helped him up and lead him back to the waiting room. He sat him down on a chair and sat next to him one arm around Yamato's waist the other holding one of his shaking hands.

"Arigato Taichi for coming." Yamato said quietly.

Taichi gave Yamato's hand a squeeze and shook his head with a weak smile.

"You need me, there's no reason to thank me. Any of the others would have too." he replied.

"Why did he do this Tai? He seemed to be fine, perfectly happy." Yamato whispered tears once again forming at the corners of his eyes.

He didn't reply but merely held Yamato to him as he began to cry soundlessly. The blonde buried his face into Taichi's jacket letting himself cry. Taichi rubbed his back and rocked him back and forth trying to soothe him.

Taichi pushed him back suddenly and Yamato looked up with blurry eyes to see his Mother running frantically over to where the two boys sat. She looked absolutely stricken and gasped as she saw the blood on her son's shirt.

"Oh my God. Yamato what happened? Where's Takeru is he okay? No one told me what happened just that he had to be taken to the hospital." She said quickly tears forming in her eyes.

Yamato couldn't speak at first fresh tears running down his face. He swallowed and managed to choke out an explanation.

"He was... when I got there he was... In the kitchen and... oh Mom he tried to... he slit his wrists." He bowed his head his body shaking as he tried not to sob hysterically.

Arms wrapped around him as his Mom sat down beside him. She was crying too with great gasping breaths. He hugged her back trying to give her support knowing how much she had always feared losing Takeru. "Takeru, my poor little Takeru. My baby..." She whispered raggedly clutching her eldest son to her as if he too would try and leave her.

Taichi looked up as Mr. Ishida came into the room tears already streaking his face. He paused as his ex-wife and son cried together. He sat down beside her and placed a hand on her shaking shoulders. She looked up with blotchy cheeks at her former husband.

"Dad..." Yamato choked out from a throat closed with tears.

"It'll be all right. Takeru is going to be just fine you'll see." He said thickly tears rimming his tired bloodshot eyes.

~~~~~~~~~~ Oh about a week later.

Takeru woke up quickly but didn't move. He'd been let out of the hospital the next day with orders to rest and instructions to his family not to be left alone. His Mom had stayed home from work as long as she could but had to start working again. Being a reporter she held unusual hours and had asked Yamato if he'd mind watching his brother when she had to leave. His response? He'd moved in temporarily.

A sleepy sigh sounded from the makeshift bed Yamato had constructed in Takeru's bedroom on the floor. Takeru stared at the ceiling still not moving as Yamato yawned punching the off button on the alarm clock. He glanced over and noticed Takeru was awake.

"Hey little bro time to get up. You're going back to school today remember?" He said with false cheer.

No answer. Takeru didn't feel much like talking lately and only would if absolutely necessary. Ever since he'd woken up in the hospital finding himself to be alive he felt cold. Sure he'd felt cold before but this was different. It was more like a wall around him. The darkness was still there of course but it was just a part of life now. The cold was the problem, the cold was... something. Takeru could no longer place a label on his own feelings. He was adrift on an ocean of darkness and he floated on an ice flow.

He blinked as a hot hand grabbed his upper arm and dragged him out of bed. Yamato had to do this every morning now. Takeru didn't see much point in getting out of bed anymore.

"Up we get, come on. You have to get back into school. A week is too much to miss and your teachers said term finals are coming and it'll be too hard to catch up so get up." Yamato said more to himself then Takeru.

He'd been as protective and as concerned for Takeru as he had back in the digiworld when Takeru had only been eight. The younger boy would often catch his cool collected brother trying to hide tears whenever he'd refused to eat or get up like now.

Finally he moved, tired of having his arm pulled. He swung his legs over the side of the bed and stood up walking to his closet for his uniform. Yamato sighed and left the room to help with breakfast.

Takeru changed into his uniform taking care not to pull the material against his wrists. They were sore beneath the thick bandages and the doctor said they would take some time to heal. He finished changing and walked out to see Sora already there and his Mother rushing to leave for work.

"Bye bye honey take care all right? I love you." She said giving Takeru a tear-filled hug then left.

"Hey Takeru how are you?" Sora asked looking a bit nervous about asking.

He ignored her and sat down at the table to eat his breakfast. She looked hurt but Yamato placed a hand on her arm and shook his head.

"Don't mind it Sora he doesn't speak to anyone anymore. Not really." he said sadly.

The door bell rang several times and someone knocked on the door loudly. Yamato smiled slightly as Sora jumped.

"That would be Daisuke and Ken. They're walking Takeru to school." He said.

"Hey Yamato! We're here to pick up Takeru." Daisuke's cheerful voice sounded as Yamato opened the door.

Takeru finished his breakfast and grabbed his bag. He slung it over his shoulder and walked out the door past his brother and the two other boys.

"Hey Takeru wait up buddy." Daisuke said hurrying to catch up.

Ken bowed a farewell to Yamato and caught up as well. Takeru didn't talk to the other two just like he hadn't talked to his parents or Yamato or Sora. Just kept on walking adrift on his ocean.

~~~~~~~~~~~ Daisuke

*Geez this is like being between two storms. One blonde the other dark. Hey that sounded kinda poetic... Ken must be rubbing off on me.*

Daisuke sighed. Neither Takeru or Ken had talked since leaving the apartment. Ken wasn't talking because of how worried he was. The auburn haired goggle boy had had his hands full trying to calm down his boyfriend when Ken had been told of what Takeru tried to do. Only once before had Daisuke seen Ken so upset and that had been when Wormmon had sacrificed himself.

His Mom had phoned Daisuke to come and calm him down she never having dealt with a Ken quite so depressed before. He'd rushed over of course and held Ken virtually all night while he cried.

*It was kinda freaky.*

To be honest Daisuke had been a little scared by Ken's behavior. Not because he was upset but because of how upset he was. Daisuke had known that Ken had had a crush on Takeru when they first met but he'd fallen in love with him.

He looked at Ken who was walking beside him, both behind Takeru. His amethyst eyes were downcast and cloudy which was how they looked when he was brooding about something.

*Wonder what he's thinking about.*

Daisuke sighed and looked at the back of Takeru's head. He was completely unsociable and even Daisuke forgot his jealousy for a moment as he worried for his digidestined friend.

*Didn't Hikari say that the opposite of hope is despair? Looks like Takeru followed her prediction.*

A hand took his and Daisuke squeezed it gently in comfort, his only concern now to protect his friend from himself. Ken squeezed back as Daisuke turned his head to look at the raven haired boy beside him. Ken gave him a half smile and they continued onward to school.

~~~~~~~~~~~ Takeru at school

The blonde teenager sat through all his classes that day uncaring and talking to no one. At lunch he sat with the others as was normal but didn't say a word. Miyako and Hikari with her boyfriend didn't know what to say though Hikari kept giving him worried glances. The bond between them seemed to have weakened enough that Takeru didn't even register its existence. Nothing of light could reach where he was. It's was too far and dark for Hikari to help him.

His other friends from his classes tried talking to him but he didn't respond staring ahead or at his books. Eventually they gave up casting strange looks in his direction. They didn't know what he'd done nor were they to find out. They just thought he'd been sick for the last week.

Classes ended and Ken was outside his room without Daisuke. The hyperactive goggle boy had soccer practice so Ken was to walk him home alone. Without a word Takeru repeated the scene from before. Walking past Ken and starting on his way neither stopping or waiting.

~~~~~~~~~~ Kenny baby

Takeru walked beside Ken the entire way home without pause. Or that is Ken walked beside Takeru. The blonde didn't seem to care if anyone was around he just walked home. Ken couldn't find anything to say though he completely understood what his friend was going through. He too had been lost within the darkness though his reaction had not been passive to say the least. Ken hadn't been helped with his journey back but had been helped by Daisuke and the other digidestined to stay.

*It was Wormmon who brought me out who showed me the way to my heart again but what can we, I do for Takeru?*

The gray eyes that had replaced the sunny blue of Takeru's former self had gone completely dull. Before it had been a slow drain of life but Takeru had still been whole. Now Ken feared he was gone, damaged beyond repair.

Another problem weighed heavily on Ken's heart. When he'd gotten the phone call from Taichi about Takeru he'd almost felt his heart break in two. He'd been too upset at the time to question what he'd felt but now he did. He'd gone and fallen in love with Takeru. He felt horrible, he was in love with Daisuke and had been for years. Ken honestly couldn't picture his life without his cheerful goggle head in it.

*But now... now I love Takeru too. Way to go Ken. Just can't make anything simple for yourself can you?*

Ken started as he realized they'd reached Takeru's apartment building. Yamato was already outside waiting for them, Sora beside him holding his arm. The cool blonde who normally looked completely put together was disheveled and tired. He smiled weakly and waved.

*Yamato's really taking this hard.*

"Hey little bro. Thanks Ken for lookin' after him and all. I have to head home for a bit to pack up some things so we're heading out that way." Yamato said.

Ken smiled and bowed taking his leave as the three others moved towards Yamato's car where it was parked near the curb. He caught the bus home and tried not to cry in public as he thought of his betrayal to his Dai-koi and his fear of losing someone he loved.

~~~~~~~~~ Daisuke

"Then you take the X value and place it...."

Daisuke was sprawled across his bed beside Ken who was sitting next to the bed the textbook in his lap. He hadn't been listening at all to Ken's tutoring at all. He'd simply been admiring the way Ken's hair fell across his face when he read a page and the curve of his neck as it was exposed.

*I have one hot boyfriend.*

He grinned to himself and sat up moving closer to the edge behind Ken. He wrapped his arms around Ken's neck trailing his hands down the ebony haired digidestined's chest. Daisuke kissed the side of Ken's neck hoping to distract him from the lesson.

"Daisuke please pay attention." Ken sighed not rising to the bait.

"Aw, Ken come on it's not like I'm gonna remember this stuff anyway." he complained.

"You never will if you don't try Daisuke." Ken replied flatly without his usual amusement.

Normally Ken would at this point tease the brunette about his lack of concern over his education. Daisuke sighed as he realized Ken was in another of his down and out moods. He wouldn't smile, wouldn't joke around and most important in Daisuke's mind, wouldn't make out. He leaned over resting his weight on Ken's shoulders and hugged him close, a stern frown on his face.

"Oh no you don't... no being Mr. Lonely around me remember?" he said cheerfully.

"How can I forget you keep reminding me." Ken said closing the textbook.

The goggle head boy frowned and hugged Ken tighter sensing something truly was wrong with his guy.

"Come on Ken something's bothering you so tell me what it is."

The uniform clad shoulders he hugged just shrugged away the question. Daisuke poked him in the side.

"Not getting away that easily, time to spill."

"Daisuke I don't feel like talking about it okay." he sighed.

"Ah ha! So something is bothering you."

"Brilliant deduction Sherlock."

"Please tell me Ken... pleeeaaaase? With sugar on top?" Daisuke whined in a childish voice.

Ken's lips twitched as he tried not to smile. Daisuke grinned and hugged Ken around his neck tight.

"Pleease please pleeeeeeeeeeeeease?"

He grinned even more as Ken started chuckling. He turned around removing Daisuke's arms from around his neck. He smiled at Daisuke and gave him a light kiss on the lips.

"You're weird and no." He said as he pulled away.

The keeper of courage and friendship flopped over backwards onto the bed and flung his arms over his head sighing loudly.

"And people say I'M impossible." He grumbled as Ken stood up stretching.

Ken looked back at Daisuke still smiling and shook his head. He sat down on the bed leaning forward on his knees.

"Don't take it personally. I just don't want to say anything yet okay Daisuke?" He said his voice now sounding a little strained.

Daisuke sat up again and looked at Ken a very serious expression on his face making the other boy glance at him.

"Ken that is the stupidest thing I've heard you say in a long time." Daisuke began moving closer to Ken and wrapping his arms about his waist.

"Of course I'm going to take this personally. I'm your boyfriend, I love you and I'm concerned. I don't like it when you drift off into your own world and don't talk to me."

"I don't know..." he said hesitantly leaning back into Daisuke's embrace.

Daisuke tightened his grip around the other boy's waist resting his chin on Ken's shoulder. He waited patiently for Ken to talk knowing he would eventually speak up.

*He's so tense. What could be bugging him so much? I know he's been depressed about Takeru but this feels different.*

He was jolted out of his own thoughts by Ken whispering something so quietly he thought the other boy hadn't spoken at all.

"What?" He asked.

"I... I've... fallen in love with someone else." Ken said the last coming out in a rush.

Daisuke blinked in shock. There was no way he'd just heard what Ken had said. He released the other boy from his embrace and leaned back to stare at Ken in complete and utter surprise.

"What?" he asked for the second time.

Ken didn't turn around but wilted under Daisuke's gaze. His hands clutched the edge of the bed tightly and gazed at a spot on the carpet his hair falling into his eyes. Daisuke just sat waiting for Ken to speak ignoring his first urge to hug and comfort the digidestined of kindness.

"I didn't mean to Daisuke... I just... did." Ken said quietly from behind the curtain of his hair.

The goggled digidestined shook his head in confusion. He didn't understand what Ken was trying to tell him. This was much more than he'd bargained for when he'd pressured Ken into confiding in him.

"Who?" It was a lame question but the only thing Daisuke could think of to ask.

Ken seemed to shrink even more into him self and whispered the name quietly as if he hoped Daisuke wouldn't hear and there for not ask again.


Silence fell as Daisuke tried to absorb this information. It was hard to believe that his beautiful Ken had fallen for someone else. It hurt to think about it. He loved Ken and Ken had always said he loved him back so why was this happening? He looked away as he saw a tear fall from Ken's chin hitting the dark blue fabric of his uniform. He was too confused and hurt himself to help Ken with his feelings. The silence grew longer as neither of them spoke.

They both jumped as Daisuke's mother knocked on the door and opened it slightly sticking her head within.

"Sorry to bother you two but Ken's mother just phoned. She wants him to come home now..." she drifted off as Ken stood up quickly, grabbing his bag and walked out of the room head down.

She looked back at Daisuke who had flopped down onto the rest of the bed lying spread eagled to stare at the ceiling.

"Daisuke honey is everything okay? Did you two have a fight?" She asked in motherly concern.

"It's okay Mom. Everything's fine." He said hoping she'd leave it alone.

She nodded shutting the door. He sighed in relief. He wasn't really the type to talk to his parents about anything but Ken was one subject he never approached. They didn't know about their relationship and that was fine with him. They didn't need to know and probably wouldn't want to know either. Not that they were homophobic but who wants to know their kid is gay, it wasn't something even the most supportive parent would be happy about hearing so Daisuke hadn't told them.

He sighed and climbed beneath the blankets of his bed. He reached over and turned off the lamp. He felt suddenly tired and wanted to think about things but his mind couldn't think about anything coherently. All he could do was feel. Hurt and confusion where twin demons within his head. He gave up trying to think and just let himself fall asleep.

*I'll deal with this in the morning.*

~~~~~~~~~ Poor Kenny baby!

Ken grabbed his bag and fled Daisuke's room gladly not able to stand the silence any longer. Daisuke's reaction had been better then he'd thought it would have been but much worse, much worse then he'd hoped. He walked home ignoring the bus and the falling snow wanting time to think.

*Why did I tell him that? He didn't need to know it wasn't necessary. You know how worried he used to get about me finding someone else. Why did I have to go and tell him that?*

He sniffed as he tried not to cry. His hands where shaking and he clasped them tightly together on the handle of his book bag. He walked his thoughts circling around the same few thoughts. That Daisuke hated him now, he wouldn't be forgiven and he deserved to be rejected.

A block away from his house he paused and looked up at the lights of his apartment. He turned away and wandered into the park that was across the street from his home. He found a bench and sat down tired.

*He must hate me. Why did I say anything at all? Why?*

He drew up his legs and rested his head on his knees arms wrapped about his legs. He let himself cry now the tears running down his face in twin rivers of misery.

*Why did I have to go and fall in love with my best friend? Why did I fall in love? Why did I have to tell the only person who's ever loved me back that I'd betrayed him? Why?*

~~~~~~~~~~~ Next day

Hikari frowned and tried to figure out what Daisuke was mumbling between his sobs. She'd been teasing him in a friendly manner in their gym class and suddenly he'd gotten this weird look on his face and had fled from the gym. She'd chased after him and had found him in the guys locker room crying in one of the change room stalls.

"Daisuke slow down and breath properly." She said sitting down beside him and putting an arm around his shoulders.

She turned him around so that he was crying onto her shoulder instead of at the wall. She'd never seen the hyper active digidestined of courage this upset before and couldn't for the life of her figure out a why.

He mumbled something again and this time she made out a few words. It had something to do with Ken and something he'd said. Hikari frowned again this time in confusion. Ken would never intentionally hurt Daisuke in any way. The two never fought they were incapable of inflicting harm on each other.

*So what happened here?*

"Daisuke-kun I can't help you if you don't calm down and tell me clearly what's wrong." She said gently to the sobbing boy.

He sniffed trying to calm himself down and Hikari smiled encouragingly as he sat up rubbing at his eyes. He looked terrible eyes all puffy and he had the most miserable expression on his face.

"Now tell me again what's wrong just slower and clearly this time."

It took a while but finally she was able to pull the full tale of what had happened the previous night out of a reluctant Daisuke. She was surprised to say the least. While she was good at reading the feelings and personalities of others this development came as a complete surprise. She'd never expected Ken to have feelings for Takeru before.

*But that's not the problem Hikari. Daisuke is really upset and I better calm him down.*

"Daisuke I think your looking at this all wrong and so is Ken from what you've told me." she started slowly picking her words carefully.

Daisuke just frowned still rubbing at his eyes and trying to stop the still steady flow of tears. He hadn't been able to stop them even though he'd stopped sobbing uncontrollably.

"Listen to me and try to understand okay?" she said taking one of his hands and rubbing it softly trying to keep him calm.

"I know from experience that you don't pick the people you love Daisuke. Just look at me and Takeru. Everyone thought we'd end up together but we never fell in love. I know Ken didn't plan on this Daisuke."

"I guess...." Daisuke said looking a bit more confused and equally upset.

"You said he had a small crush on Takeru from the beginning right?"

A nod.

"Well I bet he never really got over it but just forgot about it when he found you."

"I guess."

"So with what happened to Takeru he probably just realized he still cares about Takeru. No don't go all sad on me." She said as Daisuke started looking more depressed.

"I'm not done yet. Daisuke listen to me I'm trying to explain this. Now answer me this did he ever say he didn't love you still?"

Daisuke shook his head.

"Then what's the problem? If he still loves you and you him what's it matter if he also loves someone else?"

Daisuke just looked confused. Hikari sighed. This was like talking to a wall. When it came to situations of the heart Daisuke needed the idea pounded into his brain several times over until he understood.

"People can fall in love or be in love with more than one person. It doesn't have to be a bad thing. It all depends on what the person does about it."

Daisuke still looked confused and Hikari resisted the urge to physically knock the concept into his head.

"Lets put it this way... if Ken still loves you and wants to stay with you then what is the problem? Daisuke I know you two love each other and I don't think Ken would ever hurt you. He's upset I'm sure because he feels like he's betrayed you but doesn't that show he still loves you and wants to be with you?" She cheered mentally as the light of understanding crossed Daisuke's muddled features.

She got up and glanced at her watch. Daisuke stood up with her and grinned as he realized she was in the boys change room.

"Better get going Hikari before you get in trouble." he said, his humor returning to him.

Hikari laughed and walked out. She paused at the door and looked back at Daisuke who was standing in the middle of the room apparently thinking.


He looked up and smiled a little.

"Yeah Hikari?"

"You'll be okay now right?"

He grinned and shook his head. She smiled back and left hoping everything would work out between them. They had enough problems and strain trying to bring Takeru out of his depression, they didn't need an equally depressed Ken and upset Daisuke added to the list.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Daisuke. Again. Next day.

Daisuke sighed as he waited outside the Takaishi's apartment complex. He was waiting for Ken to show up for the customary walk with Takeru to school to keep him from jumping into traffic or going off alone just to slit his wrists again duty. The steadily falling snow was starting to find it's way down his collar to melt and dribble down his neck.

He was still upset over what Ken had told him but understood what Hikari had told him. What should it matter if Ken loved the blonde digidestined of hope as well as him? As long as Daisuke could still be with Ken and Ken wanted to be with him he shouldn't care.

He looked up as Ken's figure huddled against the cold appeared into view. Daisuke cursed himself an idiot for being so cold to his dark haired koibito and stepped into Ken's path as it became apparent he wasn't concentrating on his surroundings. Ken stopped walking and looked up blinking in confusion. His features froze as he saw who was blocking his path.

"Daisuke..." He stuttered half with cold, half with surprise.

Daisuke interrupted him trying to look cheerful but knew it was a strained expression.

"Ken I though about what you said. Well more like Hikari thought for me and I tried to understand but I have one question for you."

Ken nodded slightly looking worried and trying to hide it. Daisuke swallowed and looking into Ken incredibly sexy deep amethyst eyes and spoke.

"Do you still love me? Do you still want to be with me?" he asked quietly half afraid the answer would be no.

Ken's eyes widened and he shook his head in an affirmative. His eyes were filled with tears and his lips trembled slightly.

"Of course... I love you Daisuke and I never want to be apart from you ever!" He whispered his voice shaking slightly.

Daisuke smiled then a bright happy smile and stepped forward taking Ken into his arms and kissing him soundly on the lips. Ken raised trembling arms to hold onto the sleeves of Daisuke's jacket as he opened his mouth to Daisuke's kiss. They stopped the kiss and Ken rested his forehead against his looking into Daisuke's rich brown eyes.

"I thought you wouldn't want to ever see me again." Ken said quietly.

Daisuke smiled hugging Ken to him tighter. He realized Hikari was right... again and that Ken had been beating himself up over this. Not that he was surprised because if left alone to brood that's generally what Ken did.

"Of course not. I was more worried that you wouldn't want to be with me anymore... or something like that." he said confusing himself as he thought about it too much.

Ken started crying then and Daisuke frowned raising one hand to wipe them away gently.

"Now what's wrong Koibito?" he asked quietly.

"I don't deserve you.." he started.

"Okay stop I don't want to hear anymore. I love you and I want to be around you so I must think you deserve me... or something like that."

His last comment made Ken smile and laugh a little. Daisuke grinned and titled his head a bit to kiss Ken again. Ken smiled against his lips and put one arm around Daisuke's neck pulling himself closer to his love.

~~~~~~~~~~~ Look up... waaaay up... Takeru!

Takeru watched the two below talking, kissing, talking then kissing again this time for much longer. They seemed oblivious to the heavy snow falling around them or the strange looks they got from passing pedestrians and students on their way to school.

*They're happy...*

His Mom came into the room and paused hesitating before she spoke. She'd been very uneasy around Takeru since he'd slit his wrists and had been relying entirely on Yamato to deal with him. Takeru didn't mind, not because of any particular reason he just didn't care about anything. He wasn't quite numb like before to anything but more like when he'd walked to much through the snow and couldn't feel his feet anymore. He just couldn't feel anymore. There was nothing to feel he held absolutely nothing within his heart. Not even a desire to end his life drifted with him through the ice.

"Baby your friends will be here soon. You should get your shoes and coat on." She said interrupting Takeru's blank stare at his friends.

He turned away and went to put his winter stuff on. His mom watched him warily as he walked past. Normally he'd have been hurt by this distant behavior but he wasn't. After all that's all anyone had been treating him with. It wasn't their fault he was the one set adrift and far away. They just couldn't reach him.

The doorbell rang and he put on his hat. His mom answered the door dressed in her winter trench coat.

"Thank goodness your finally here. I have to get going Takeru is putting on his stuff and should be out shortly. You'll have to lock up Takeru's got a key bye." her rushed voice sounded from the door before fading.

He stood up and walked to the door to put on his shoes. Daisuke and Ken stood in the doorway slightly flushed from more than just the cold and waited for him to finish putting on his shoes. Ken had the same sad expression on his face that he always had around Takeru these days while Daisuke merely looked thoughtful and worried. Which were strange expressions to be seen on Daisuke's face at one time.

He stood up and walked out the door past the two. They followed and waited while he locked up. They continued on to walk to school in silence, the softly falling snow masking all sounds except for the crunch of their feet.

~~~~~~~~~ Daisuke

Eventually they'd realized that they had to get to school and had stepped apart slightly flushed but smiling. They'd gone upstairs to pick up Takeru. As usual Ken had become silent with a slightly distressed look in his eyes as they waited for Takeru to finish lacing up his boots. Strangely enough Daisuke felt no jealousy towards him only a sense of protectiveness. He knew now how Ken felt about the blonde and he knew that Ken would probably never be very happy again until Takeru recovered from his depression.

They walked behind Takeru through the snow and once again Daisuke had the feeling of being caught between two rain storms. Though when he thought about it Takeru's mood was more like the snow falling around them than rain. Silent, sterile and cold.

Daisuke glanced at Ken and took his gloved hand in his own hoping to cheer him up if only just a little. Ken looked up and smiled slightly his eyes softening. He moved closer to Daisuke and removed his hand only to wrap it around his waist. Daisuke smiled and put his arm across his back holding onto Ken's shoulder.

*Well I might have cheered him up a little but... yup there he goes off into his own little world.*

Daisuke looked up at Takeru who was fairly far ahead of them now and decided something had to be done. This whole thing was starting to wear down on Ken and would probably eat away at him until Takeru was better. But the problem was he didn't know what. Everyone had been walking on eggshells around Takeru ever since he cut his wrists and while that might have been a good idea for someone else Takeru wasn't getting better. He never talked to anyone anymore, the blonde never teased Daisuke, didn't smile, didn't laugh, and was only getting worse as each day passed.

"Ken what are we going to do with Takeru? Everyday he just drifts further off and I think we're going to lose him soon." Daisuke said quietly to Ken as they walked.

Ken looked at him with an equally worried expression. He shook his head looking down at the footsteps in the snow.

"I don't know to be honest. I've talked to Yamato a few times and everyone's been keeping an eye on him, trying to get him to interact with them, that's what the doctor said to do. Get him involved..." Ken said quietly as if he doubted the advice.

"Ken that won't work anymore. He's getting worse! He never laughs or smiles or-" Ken cut him off.

"He's depressed, of course he doesn't laugh."

"Yeah but he doesn't frown, he doesn't get mad, he doesn't even cry. There isn't anything there anymore surely you can see that Ken. You were acting the same way from what you've told me. After what happened with Wormmon." Daisuke seemed to have gotten through to Ken as the dark haired boy frowned looking at Takeru who had paused a few feet ahead when they'd stopped walking.

"I think you're right Daisuke. I feel like a royal idiot for not seeing this sooner... but something's different about that and what's happened to Takeru. I thought of this before but had forgotten..." Ken drifted off looking extremely worried.

"Care to share? I only have flashes of brilliance every so often ya know." Daisuke said after awhile when Ken didn't continue.

Ken blinked, looked up and frowned. He had a strange look in his eyes. They were sick and dark as if he was realizing something he hoped wasn't true.

"Takeru isn't acting like I was, at least not anymore. He was before but more like the reverse. I was trying to find myself I believe Takeru was losing himself." He said quietly.

Daisuke frowned not liking where this was going. It sounded too much like what Hikari had told him before Takeru had slit his wrists. Ken continued quietly his arm holding even tighter to Daisuke's waist.

"I think... from what Hikari said to you and from experience he's completely lost himself." He finished like he hadn't wanted to say so out loud for fear of making his suspicions real.

"So Takeru's what? He's not acting anything like you were as the Digimon Kaiser..." Daisuke said slightly confused.

"No of course he wouldn't. Like Hikari said it's like a reversal of our crests. My kindness was turned to cruelty while Takeru's hope has turned to..."

"Despair. Yeah, Hikari said that before. So what do we do about it?" Daisuke asked feeling like they were talking in circles.

"I don't know. I barely know how I came out of my own problems in the first place." Ken shrugged looking more depressed than before.

Daisuke hugged his shoulders a little hoping to cheer up Ken a little. They'd come to another deadend and had only made themselves depressed.

*But what can we do? I don't know, Ken doesn't know, no one does or we'd have done something before this.*

He stared mournfully at the blonde figure walking a fair distance ahead of them and sighed. His mind searching in vain for a solution to Takeru's problem.

~~~~~~~~~~~ Ken a week later

The snow was still falling six days later and now coated everything in four and a half feet of white. School had been canceled for the afternoon and Ken was still in his pajamas. Daisuke had promised to come over if he could get through the snow okay and his parents gave him the go ahead. Ken was waiting for him to phone and confirm when the phone rang. He snatched it up quickly smiling a little.

"Moshi moshi Daisuke?"

"Hello Ken it's Takeru's mother."

"Oh hello. What is it?"

"I have to go to work again today and I was wondering if you'd look after Takeru again. Yamato would but he's completely snowed in."

"Of course Ms. Takaishi. I'll be right over."

"Thank you so much Ken. Goodbye dear."

"Bye and you're welcome."

He hung up the phone and called Daisuke's. His sister Jun picked up the phone and he managed to get a message through to meet him on the way to Takeru's. Apparently he was in the shower.

Ken pulled on his jacket, a scarf and his winter shoes and proceeded into the wintery silence of the snow fall. According to the news report this was all part of a large system of mini storms all coming one after another. The sky was clear at night but by midmorning the snow was falling again.

He trudged through the snow and wished it was a little less deep. It came to about mid thigh and was a bitch to walk through. Daisuke wasn't at their normal meeting spot but Ken wasn't surprised his house was farther but Daisuke wasn't known for his ability to move quickly. He continued onwards to Takeru's knowing his mother was most likely wanting to get on her way.

*Though how she can get to work in this stuff I don't know.*

He got to the door and knocked politely. The door opened almost immediately and Takeru's mother rushed up pulling him with her. She shut the door and locked it giving Ken an apologetic smile.

"I hate to make you walk back so soon in the cold but I'm going to be gone for most of the day and there isn't a scrap of food inside. You don't mind having Takeru over do you?" She asked hurriedly.

Ken shook his head and she left without waiting for a verbal agreement. He blinked and shrugged figuring her work was putting pressure on her to show up. He turned to Takeru who wasn't paying attention to anything just staring at the snow with a blank expression.

*Daisuke was right there isn't anything there. Before in the trees at school there was a presence looking out from behind, now there's nothing.*

Ken tried to keep back tears and tugged on Takeru's sleeve to get him moving. Each time Ken saw the nothingness behind the blonde's eyes he felt like crying. It hurt to see someone he loved so far away. So distant and cold you couldn't see them anymore.

They struggled through the snow and it began to snow harder in big fat flakes. It obscured all vision to less then six feet away.

*Dang and now we're going to get lost in a snowstorm great.*

He thought just as he heard a soft flop from behind him. He turned around feeling a bit numb from the cold to see Takeru had fallen. He was covered in snow and the situation might have been comical if he hadn't looked so completely uncaring. He pushed himself up a little then paused as if he didn't see the use of moving anymore. Ken pushed through the snow and pulled him up by the arm. Takeru moved slowly and almost reluctantly.

"Takeru, what are we going to do with you." Ken muttered sadly as he helped the uncaring boy through the snow.

His limbs moved slowly and woodenly. Ken started to become worried. The cold was starting to get to him and they still had quite a ways to go and with Takeru moving as slowly as he was that was going to take some time.

*And here I thought canceling school was being a bit drastic for a few feet of snow.*

A hand grabbed his arm and Ken looked up into Daisuke's smiling face. He blinked confused and Daisuke pulled him along a little still smiling.

"Hey I figured you'd already went ahead and decided to catch up. You two look cold. It's only four more blocks to your place right Ken?" He said cheerfully.

"Y..y..yeah t..t..that's right..." Ken stuttered teeth chattering.

Daisuke put an arm through Ken's and helped then through the snow. He was grinning having always liked snow being a bit of a snowboarder. Ken on the other hand was feeling pretty low still. He felt even worse as he tripped sending them all into the snow. Daisuke cursed loudly and Ken pulled himself out of the snow drift he'd fallen face first into. He struggled to sit up and he could hear the brunette floundering around laughing a bit. He managed to get up and looked for Takeru. Once again he was just sitting there not even noticing how much snow had gotten on him or he was shoulder deep in the fluffy wet stuff.

*Why does he act like everything isn't even to be attempted. I don't understand this and I don't know how to help!*

Ken felt tears spring to his eyes and he tried to wipe them away before Daisuke saw and once again helped their silent companion to his feet.

~~~~~~~~~~~ Daisuke's a little bit more IC this time

Daisuke brushed snow out of his hair wishing once again he'd brought a tuque. Or ear muff as stupid as they looked. Then his ears wouldn't be numb. He looked over at the other two as Ken virtually had to lift Takeru out of the snow. Daisuke immediately felt angry. Ken had tears in his eyes again over Takeru. All week and probably before that Ken had been getting upset over his friend's lack of response to anything. But this was the first time he'd actually started crying about it.

*Dammit can't Takeru see what he's doing to everyone? Yamato's a wreck he hates not being able to help his 'little bro' when he needs it. His Mom is completely frazzled and I'm ready to punch a brick wall I'm so sick and tired of watching him drift farther away. Hikari is starting to think this is all her fault for breaking up with him though that's not true, not at all. Then there's Ken... Ken is about to fret himself to pieces if Takeru doesn't do something!*

He frowned and decided to do something about all this. He managed to wade through the snow to the other two. Ken was blinking away tears as he looked at Daisuke in confusion. He grabbed the apathetic Takeru's shoulders and shook him violently.

"What the hell is wrong with you!" He shouted while Takeru just blinked at him owlishly barely focusing on his face.

"Don't you see, don't you care what's happening to you? You just sat in a five foot snow drift and didn't move!" he shouted into his face shaking him again.

"Don't you give a damn anymore about anything?"

Takeru just stared blankly at him nothing behind his icy gray eyes. Daisuke frantically searched through his mind trying to find something that would knock his friend out of his self-imposed apathy.

"Everyone's so worried about you and you don't even try. Your own brother Mr. Cool and Tough has been reduced to a wreck, he doesn't even smile much anymore. Your Mom has been crying everytime I see her. Don't you care about that?" He said again shaking Takeru again though less violently.

There was still no response behind those cold eyes and Daisuke became desperate. He couldn't stand by and let his friend fade away beneath his cold isolation hurting everyone especially Ken. He knew how much Ken cared for Takeru and he wouldn't let Takeru hurt him by drifting away from the world. He stepped back and suddenly Takeru was back in the snow his hand on his red check where Daisuke had punched him. Hard.

~~~~~~~~~~~~ Takeru

He'd gone through the walk in his normal state of uncaring ignoring the frantic worrying of his mother as she prepared for work. They'd once again threatened her with a pink slip if she didn't show. He'd ignored Ken's obvious stress over him and had walked along through the snow uncaring. The snow fitted his thoughts cold, remote and desolate.

He hadn't cared much about falling in the snow. Not the first time nor the second. He was already wet and cold, why did it matter if he got up or not. Ken was persistent pulling him up forcing him to keep going.

When Daisuke had charged forward and started shaking him he hadn't reacted. So what if the outgoing brunette was mad why should he care? Then Daisuke had stepped back, an enraged expression on his face as he pulled back his fist and swung. It had hurt and he hadn't expected it. He fell backwards into a snow drift landing hard on his back. He sat up one hand to his cheek.

Was that surprise? It couldn't be he didn't, couldn't feel anything.

Daisuke stood there and had tears of his own in his eyes. Though his where more out of frustration than worry as Ken's were. He had his fists clutched at his sides and was breathing hard.

*He's really mad...*

The thought flitted briefly across his mind as Daisuke began to shout again.

"Damn it Takeru when are you going to snap out of this? You're going to drag everyone who cares about you down as you go." He paused rubbing at his eyes in annoyance.

"You're hurting everyone who loves you and I won't let you anymore!" He yelled flinging an arm out at Ken who was watching the whole thing with wide eyes crying silently.

Takeru stared in total shock at the emotion in Daisuke's voice. His voice cracked as he continued quieter this time.

"Don't you care?" He said again less angry and more dejected, "Don't you care about what happens to any of us if you completely give up hope? How can we if you of all people don't?"

He sat in the snow his body growing as chill as his soul as Daisuke and Ken slightly behind him stared at him quietly.

"We care about you Takeru and we are not going to let you drift away from us."

He felt the ice, the cold that was surrounding him, felt how the rain had numbed his soul then started to freeze until he felt nothing. Now he knew, beyond the numbness it hurt. It hurt more than anything he'd ever felt before. The two before him began to blur and waiver. He blinked away the distortion and raised a shocked hand to his face. He was crying. For the first time in months he felt something. And he broke down into hysterical sobs as he felt the hurt inside him.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Part Two is OVER!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Okay I wrote this particular author's note in the middle of Ken's confession. Oh geez I hate making my Kenny baby and his Dai-koi fight. Sniff... sniff... I hate doing that! *Steels herself to write the rest* I can do this. I can write them having a fight. This is an angst filled fic... I must write the rest or else the story cannot continue! But poor Kenny baby... aren't I pathetic freaking out over my own story. Sigh, oh well... I shall continue onward! Whining worse than Daisuke all the way...

And now I am done! I was going to write more of this and let my friends edit buuuut I'm too lazy. Besides then the handful of you who like my story would have to wait longer and we can't have that now can we! No we cannot. Besides this was a good place to end no? Oh remember that surprise I mentioned? Well here it comes! *Laughs evilly* Wahahahahahahahahahahaaa... in part three. Kathrine's a smidge mad at me for doing this to Takeru but hey I can't control my sick mind now can I? Do I even want to? Want to know what the hell I'm talking about? Read on my friends read on and find out how truly twisted I am... Though I can, will and have done, so much, that's worse.


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